Category Archives: First Amendment

Congress Pushes Bill To Create Internet Kill Switch

lieberman
Joe Lieberman

ORWELL LIVES! EVEN AS EGYPT'S GOVERNMENT attempts to crackdown on street protests by shutting down internet and mobile phone services, the US is preparing to reintroduce a bill that could be used to shut down the Internet, a kill switch. The legislation, which would grant presidential powers to seize control of and even shut down the internet, would soon be reintroduced to a Senate committee, Wired.com reported. It was initially introduced last year but expired with a new Congress. The proposed legislation, introduced into the US Senate by independent senator Joe Lieberman, who is chairman of the US Homeland Security committee, seeks to grant the President broad emergency powers over the internet in times of national emergency.

Last year, Lieberman argued the bill was necessary to "preserve those networks and assets and our country and protect our people". He said that, for all its allure, the internet could also be a "dangerous place with electronic pipelines that run directly into everything from our personal bank accounts to key infrastructure to government and industrial secrets". US economic security, national security and public safety were now all at risk from new kinds of enemies, including "cyber warriors, cyber spies, cyber terrorists and cyber criminals". Although the bill was targetted at protecting the US, many have said it would also affect other nations.

According to Renesys, a US Internet monitoring company, Egypt's four main internet service providers cut off international access to their customers in a near simultaneous move at 2234 GMT on Thursday. Around 23 million Egyptians have either regular or occasional access to the internet, according to official figures, more than a quarter of the population.

One of Australia's top communications experts, University of Sydney associate professor Bjorn Landfeldt, had previously railed against the idea, saying shutting down the internet would "inflict an enormous damage on the entire world". He said it would be like giving a single country "the right to poison the atmosphere, or poison the ocean".

The scale of Egypt's crackdown on the internet and mobile phones amid deadly protests against the rule of President Hosni Mubarak is unprecedented in the history of the web, experts have said. US President Barack Obama, social networking sites and rights groups around the world all condemned the moves by Egyptian authorities to stop activists using mobile phones and cyber technology to organise rallies. "It's a first in the history of the internet," Rik Ferguson, an expert for Trend Micro, the world's third biggest computer security firm, said.

Julien Coulon, co-founder of Cedexis, a French internet performance monitoring and traffic management system, added: "In 24 hours we have lost 97 per cent of Egyptian internet traffic". Despite this, many Egyptians are finding ways to get access, some using international telephone numbers to gain access to dial-up internet. According to Renesys, a US Internet monitoring company, Egypt's four main internet service providers cut off international access to their customers in a near simultaneous move at 2234 GMT on Thursday. Around 23 million Egyptians have either regular or occasional access to the internet, according to official figures, more than a quarter of the population.

"In an action unprecedented in internet history, the Egyptian government appears to have ordered service providers to shut down all international connections to the internet," James Cowie of Renesys said in a blog post.

Read it all.

President Obama's New Best Friends

AS WE ABSORB THE SECRETS OF TREASON we continue to witness, some in this nation have begun to wonder how long until talk of impeachment moves from the shadows of a stunned but still alert public onto the floor of the newly invigorated House of Representatives now that Barack Obama has publically endorsed a role for the Muslim Brotherhood in a new, post-Mubarak government for Egypt.

Rumors, and rumors of those rumors can be found in the secondary media.

This should come as no surprise. Mr. Obama has behaved consistently all along, from his refusal to back the protesters in Iran, who were demonstrating against an oppressive Islamic Republic, to his backing of these protesters in Egypt, to whom he has just given a green light to establish a government that, given numerous historical precedents, will likely be the precursor to an Islamic Republic.

"The Muslim Brotherhood is a global movement whose members cooperate with each other throughout the world, based on the same religious worldview—the spread of Islam until it rules the world...an all-encompassing Islamic organization, calling for the adoption of the great religion that Allah gave in his mercy to humanity..all the members of the Muslim Brotherhood in the international arena operate according to the written charter that states that Jihad is the only way to achieve these goals...ours is the largest organization in the world."
—Muhammad Mahdi 'Akef
Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood Asharq Alawsat
London 11/11/05

(The United States is) "a satan that abuses the religion. I expect America to collapse soon. I have complete faith that Islam will invade Europe and America."
—Akef, Memri 2/4/2004

Allegory: the Cave of the Mama Grizzly

palin_fair1
Palin strikes perfect pitch in a crowd of Republican voters...

Into the midst of all this pent-up political need steps up the Mama Grizzly named Sarah Palin, and she hails from resource-rich hinterlands of Alaska. "I so admire Taranto," writes Clarice Feldman of the American Thinker, "and I think that of all the good explanations I read this week of the hatred directed at [Sarah] Palin and the derangement respecting her views and conduct, his comes the closest to the mark.

"Yes, many liberal women irrationally hate Palin, but I think they hate her because her very life is dragging them into the sunshine, where they have momentarily lost their way. Right now, Palin's very life is an affront to them—she's beautiful, powerful, and the center of a large family—and most of them are not.

"It will take these people some time to see that it is their own views and conduct, not Palin's, that is responsible for the distinction. Moreover, I think liberal women are not alone in this temporary mental disordering. I think others at first will hate Palin for taking them into the blinding light, but that with time and more media stunts like last week's, they and the Times and USA Today readers, the present consumers of the medias' distortions, will get some glimpses of life outside the cave and come to realize the distinction between truth and reality on one hand and projected lies and make-believe on the other."

As someone posted earlier on a different thread, (perhaps it was you, Clarice?), "my dad always said, dogs don't chase parked cars."

Meanwhile, Ed Koch, former mayor of New York City, an unrepentant liberal, this week has published an article defending Sarah Palin against the continued crriticism his own party levels at her:

In the 2008 presidential race when Sarah Palin's name was first offered to the public by John McCain as his running mate, I said at the time that she "scared the hell out of me." My reference was to the content of her remarks, not to her power to persuade voters.

It was McCain who lost the presidential election, not Palin. Since that time she has established that she has enormous power to persuade people. A self-made woman who rose from PTA mother to Governor of Alaska, she is one of the few speakers in public life who can fill a stadium. Her books are enormous successes. Her television program about Alaska has been a critical and economic success. When Sarah Palin addresses audiences, they rise to their feet in support and applause. She is without question a major leader of the far right faction in the Republican Party and its ally the Tea Party. She is Mama Grizzly writ large.

Ed Koch
Ed Koch, former NYC mayor

I repeat my earlier comment that she "scares the hell out of me." Nevertheless, she is entitled to fair and respectful treatment. The fools in politics today in both parties are those who think she is dumb. I've never met her, but I've always thought that she is highly intelligent but not knowledgeable in many areas and politically uninformed. I don't believe she will run for president in 2012 or that she would be elected if she did. But I do believe she is equal in ability to many of those in the Republican Party seeking that office.

Many women understand what she has done for their cause. She will not be silenced nor will she leave the heavy lifts to the men in her Party. She will not be falsely charged, remain silent, and look for others—men—to defend her. She is plucky and unafraid.

While I disagree with her and I am prepared to oppose her politically, in the spirit of longed-for civility I say, Ms. Palin you are in a certain sense an example of the American dream: You have the courage to stand up and present your vision of America to its people. Your strength and lack of fear make America stronger and are examples to be emulated by girls and boys, men and women who are themselves afraid to speak up. You provide the example that they need for self-assurance.

Sarah Palin is the right person, at the right time, in the right country. . . our country the great United States of America.

Sarah Palin's Buoyant March To Washington

A MUSICAL TRIBUTE TO former Republican Party VP candidate, Sarah Palin, is a recent YouTube sensation. The video went viral Monday, burning up Twitter and popping up on various news and entertainment websites.

The tribute song is set to the tune of the famous Civil War-era 'Battle Hymn of the Republic.' According to credits posted on YouTube, the song was written by Tom Dempsey and sung by Gary Mcvay.

The song is an anthem to Sarah Palin in particular, and the Tea Party in general, although the song is not officially affiliated with Gov. Palin nor her organization in any way.

Sarah Palin's Hymn of the Republic Lyrics:

She’s a cold blast from Alaska,
Ingrained with common sense.
She’s not a Harvard lawyer,
but she knew what the Founders meant.
A cold blast from the North,
That freezes Congress in their tracks.
With God and the Tea party, she’s gonna take it back.
Sarah Palin, she won’t listen to their bunk.
Sarah Palin’s coming south to hunt some skunk.
Sarah Palin, she’ll throw them all in jail.
And when she gets to Washington, it’ll be cold as hell.
Sarah has the wisdom to walk through an open door.
She’s stomping out the wretches where the evil lies in store.
She will scrub the floors and sweep the riff-raff into cracks.
With God and the Tea party, she’s gonna take it back.
Sarah Palin, she won’t listen to their bunk.
Sarah Palin’s coming south to hunt some skunk.
Sarah Palin, she’ll throw them all in jail.
And when she gets to Washington, it’ll be cold as hell.

Spoken:
Congress pats themselves from some new bill they just passed.
I watch as my freedom slowly runs through an hourglass.
They think they spend our money better than we do.
But they can talk until they’re blue and old.
Cos if they ever gave us anything,
They always wanted something in return, Sarah knows.
Sarah's marching on on.

Closing dedication:
“I’d like to dedicate that to the Tea Party and all the patriots.”

Ilood libel speech? Who cares? Today has been a fabulous day for SP fans, and here's part two of that fabulous in an article posted by Adam Katz of the Generative Anthropology Summer Conference:

"I will lay down a marker right away—for me, the main criterion for supporting a Presidential candidate is that he or she knows what the left is; anyone who thinks that a Republican president will be able to settle into the White House in 2013, put on the green eyeshades, and start balancing the budget in a sober, bipartisan manner is criminally naïve, and I don’t want anyone like that anywhere near the Presidency."

spalin4
Sarah Palin

Normal America and free America are at war with the Left, and anyone one who is not ready to fire back when fired at need not apply. Sarah Palin seems to know what the Left is, and none of her potential contenders seems to have a clue. At this moment, the ability to create and run a political and economic media empire is more pertinent to presidential aspirations than the ability to balance a budget with your bare hands, which you can hire someone to do anyway.

But leaving that aside, Palin, and the Palin phenomenon are intrinsically interesting—there seems to be widespread agreement on that, at any rate. She, in her public persona, seems to me an almost perfect complement to Barack Obama, and the Obama phenomenon—she seems destined to be his nemesis, a role she seems to relish and which she plays very well. I think an Obama v. Palin race in 2012 would dramatize all the post-Bush, indeed, all the post-9/11 conflicts; even more, it would finally bring the entire Progressive Era in our politics, dating back to the turn of the 20th century, on the stage—and I think this would be both very healthy and incredibly exciting. We desperately need such a polarization now, and it would be nice to deal a blow to the illusions of the “fiscally conservative, socially liberal center” of the country. I don’t doubt that there are many Americans, maybe, depending upon definitions, a majority, who can be described as “fiscally conservative, socially liberal”; nor do I doubt that in a certain sense they are the “center,” picking and suturing together the least antagonistic items of both right and left.

It’s an empty center, though, and a campaign that showed as much by forcing the “centrists” to choose would be healthy as well—if you support the kind of judicially driven federal government needed to push through and sustain the “socially liberal” agenda, than you can forget about fiscal conservatism. Fiscal conservatism would mean federalism and expanded property rights, both of which, as the politically savvy know, mean death to “social liberalism,” i.e., abortion on demand, gay marriage and religion out of the public sphere. And I might as well also say that I can’t say the word “gravitas” without, at the very least, smiling. I think that things are going to get rough, especially if the prerogatives of those plugged into the victimary public arena are even mentioned, much less trespassed upon—we need someone whose first instinct isn’t to placate the New York Times.

Read it all. And here is another Katz exploration into the amazing Obama-Palin dichotomy.

Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill

We are fortunate to be able to peel back the layers of time to find that dual juggernauts Winston Churchill and George Orwell summed up so-called intellectuals so succinctly, how they are a weakening force because firstly everyone assumes what they say is right because they've got a reputation as intellectuals, even when they're wrong, and that believing these intellectuals can have such dire consequences. He said it about Britain but it could so easily be any Western country today. Here's what Winston Churchill said about them 78 years ago:

"Historians have noticed, all down the centuries, one peculiarity of the English people, which has cost them dear. We have always thrown away after a victory the greater part of the advantages we had gained in the struggle. The worst difficulties from which we suffer do not come from without. They come from within. They do not come from the cottages of the wage earners; they come from a peculiar type of brainy people, always found in our country, who, if they add something to its culture, take much from its strength. Our difficulties come from the mood of unwarrantable self-abasement, into which we have been cast, by a powerful section of our own intellectuals. They come from the acceptance of defeatist doctrines by a large proportion of our politicians. But what have they to offer, but a vague internationalism, a squalid materialism, and the promise of impossible utopias? Nothing can save England if she will not save herself. If we lose faith in ourselves, in our capacity to guide and govern, if we lose our will to live, then indeed our story is told." – Winston Churchill, 1933

Of course, words being words, and the bird's the word, George Orwell, Dwight D Eisenhower and Albert Camus summed up the so-called intellectual elite, a group of talkers and writers who often mistake their years of practice and subsequent compensation for a certain collegial profundity of thought whenever they open their mouths or commit their pens and keyboards with these jostling texts:

  • You must be an intellectual. Only an intellectual could say something so stupid. —George Orwell
  • An intellectual is someone whose mind watches itself. —Albert Camus
  • I heard a definition of an intellectual, that I thought was very interesting: a man who takes more words than are necessary to tell more than he knows. —Dwight D. Eisenhower

Congressman Allen West's Presidential Timbre

NOW THAT COLONEL ALLEN WEST has been elected to the US Congress from Florida, and today, being appointed to the House Armed Services Committee, we can look forward to progress on these important matters before us. Thank God for Colonel West, America now has an insider who KNOWS his stuff.

Why Islam Is Different

Islamic Protest
Typical Islamic Protest
"This is America. That means that if a religious organization legally sets up shop it must be accepted. Why the hate against Islam alone?"

Such is often the earnest query put to those who work in the American Resistance to stop the Islamization of our republic. The following is another excellent retort posted orginally at Jihad Watch by the eminently learned Hugh Fitzgerald:

OH, I CAN ANSWER THAT, as an atheist—just like Pat Condell, Oriana Fallaci, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and many others— just like you. Only, not like you, Pat Condell, and Oriana Fallaci, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, understand perfectly well that Islam is not only, and not even mainly, about providing an explanation for the creation of the universe and for describing a Creator and setting out some rituals for worship of that Creator.

No, Islam is a Total Belief-System. Islam provides a Total Regulation of Life, and a Complete Explanation of the Universe. Islam discourages free inquiry and encourages adherents—requires them rather—to be slaves of Allah. Islam sets out rules of conduct that are not based on morality, but are simply rules according to what Muhammad, a seventh-century Arab, is said to have transmitted from Allah, and those rules are not subject to questioning, moral or otherwise, or re-interpretation, but are simply divided as to What Is Commanded and What Is Prohibited. And among the many things Prohibited are most forms of artistic expression, including all paintings of people, statues, and music, so that if one finds Muslims practicing this, it is only because they choose to ignore Islam at the edges, and have no defense if other Muslims come along and insist that they halt that music or that painting. Prohibited too is the kind of skeptical inquiry that so threatens the brittle structure and hold of Islam over the minds of its adherents, and in discouraging that, Islam discourages mental freedom of all kinds.

Muslims owe their entire allegiance to Islam, and to fellow members of the Umma (that loyalty is one that becomes real mainly when Infidels are involved, for as the behavior of the Arabs toward non-Arab Muslims makes clear, Islam is also a vehicle for Arab supremacism), and as the behavior of rich Muslim states toward poor Muslim states also makes clear, there is no real sharing or help among Muslims; the only help is that provided against Infidels.
And above all, what is so worrisome about Islam is that it lays claim to the whole world. There is not only a Dar al-Islam and a Dar al-Harb, but between the two, there must be a state of permanent warfare. It is the duty of all Muslims—a duty not tangential but central—to win ever-greater amounts of territory for Islam, for Dar al-Islam. And that must be done by removing all obstacles to the spread, and then the dominance, of Islam. This can be accomplished in a number of ways, but the struggle, or Jihad, to remove those obstacles must go on forever. It is not a case of recovering this or that sliver of territory once possessed by Muslims, though theoretically—and emotionally—priority in the To-Do List of Islam is given to such places that were once under Islam. These include not only Israel, whihch gets such exaggerated attention, but Spain and Portugal, Sicily, Greece, the Balkans (Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia), Rumania, Bulgaria, much of Hungary, most of Russia, almost all of India, and more besides. But if the Sudan, or Nigeria, or southern Thailand, or part of the Philippines, or countries or parts of countries in Western Europe, fall to Islam before some of the lands on the To-Do List, that is fine with Muslims.

The main point is that Islam uncompromisiingly divides the world between Believer and Unbeliever, Musliim and Infidel. And Muslims owe their entire allegiance to Islam, and to fellow members of the Umma (that loyalty is one that becomes real mainly when Infidels are involved, for as the behavior of the Arabs toward non-Arab Muslims makes clear, Islam is also a vehicle for Arab supremacism), and as the behavior of rich Muslim states toward poor Muslim states also makes clear, there is no real sharing or help among Muslims; the only help is that provided against Infidels.

I could go on, but why should I? Your question has been answered sufficiently.

There is no comparison between the Total Belief-System of Islam—called, faute de mieux, in modern times, a "religion," (earlier Western men called it not a "religion" but a "faith" or "a fanatical faith"—this "great religions of the world" business started mainly in the early 20th century, with American Protestant schoolbooks of the "Different Peoples of the World" type, with a unit on "The World's Great Religions."

Islam is a threat to me and to you. Christianity is not. Judaism is not. Hinduism is not. Buddhism is not. But Islam....Islam is quite different. And more and more people, despite the best efforts of those in authority to try to make us believe otherwise, are examining the evidence of their senses (including the daily Jihad news from around the world, but also books on Islam, and the Qur'an, Hadith, and Sira themselves) and discovering this, disturbing and unpleasant as it is, to be true.

And they will continue to do so, and the race is on: will enough people have grasped the meaning, and the menace, of Islam in time to take the measures necessary to adequately protect themelves, or will the crazed squandering of resources, including the transfer of vast sums from the Infidel peoples to Muslims—even beyond the fantastic sums, the trillions, that have gone to Muslim oil-rich states, battening on an accident of geology—stop, and reasonable, effective, and much less burdensome measures, be taken in time?

One hopes. One keeps on hoping.

—Hugh Fitzgerald

Considerations On Such Height

Snd then there were none. Well, there is still the dazed and confused Taliban-loving Patti Smith, strutting her prayer rug into the clouds of another piston in effort of the poor devils groveling at her feet. But after Ginsberg and Burroughs left the beat in the late 90s, andCorso ducked behind the curtain in 2001, Jim Carroll was damn near the final nail in the famous and infamous Beat Generation tool shed annex to fade to rust.

Carroll contributed an untitled poem to the pages of Rolling Stone at the height of his rock and roll stardom:

    It’s sad this vision required such height.
    I’d have preferred to be down with the others, in the stadium.
    They know the terror of birds.
    I am left, instead, with the deep drone...
    The urgency to deliver light, as if it
    were some news from the far galaxies.

From Issue 321 — July 10, 1980

Jim Carroll was 60. Actor and dancer Patrick Swayze also died this week of pancreatic cancer. He was 57.