Without the government protecting us from industry....

The largest online protest in the history of the Internet may have derailed SOPA and PIPA earlier this year – but major entertainment corporations like the Recording Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America are still coming after you. With the help of Internet Service Providers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T – tabs are being kept right now on people who are sharing copyrighted material online.

And on July 12th, Internet providers will begin putting in a place a new anti-piracy plan – warning internet users that they could face penalties of up to $150,000 if they continue to file-share. Providers will begin cutting down – or eliminating altogether – bandwidth for so-called offenders – until said offender agree to take an education course on piracy. Providers may also restrict access to only major websites like Google and Facebook. And most disturbingly – providers may share your information with other Internet providers to effectively create a blacklist of people who won’t be allowed to sign online.

This is the corporate lock-down of the Internet that we’ve feared – and it’s the reason why Libertarians and Free Marketeers are wrong. Without the government protecting us from industry – be it Wall Street, dangers in the workplace, or the Internet – corporate power always creeps in to strangle consumers.

Comments

Sedwin's picture
Sedwin 10 years 46 weeks ago
#1

Thom: I know this is off topic but with regard to UPS I use them from time to time as well as I live out in the middle of nowhere and I think it is interesting to note that, UPS was one of the mian donors who convinced Tom DeLay to pass the poison pill legislation against the post office. They did so with an eye on taking over their business but they do not have near the infrastructure to do so. As soon as the post office started to get into trouble last October UPS actually started to cut back drivers where I live forcing the existing drivers to work exceptionally long hours and they refused to pay them overtime in violation of their contracts. The drivers complained but the company held out until the holiday season started at which point the company could work the drivers for longer hours and no overtime as per the contract but as soon as the holiday season ended they went right back to the long hours and no overtime practice in violation of their contract. So as you can see the owners/executives are playing this "You're lucky to have a job" game as well as the "Look there are so many postal workers getting fired I'm sure they'll take you're job" cards against the UPS drivers. I've now had 4 drivers quit my route since October because of long hours (8am to as long as 11:30pm) and contract violations /no overtime since October.

Mark Ropel's picture
Mark Ropel 10 years 46 weeks ago
#2

Thom, the 150K fine seems too steep, but, it is copyright protection for the artists ( unless I missed something) as well as their publishers. I guess I'll ask you, what about someone going to Kinkos and knocking off a few copies of your books?How would you feel? Maybe, one would be OK, right? But files, nah, just pay the artists,songwriters and Co.s that publish the music you like. Part of me sees this in the same light I see those guys who ripped off the old Blues musicians, just thieves.

TruthAddict's picture
TruthAddict 10 years 46 weeks ago
#3

Libertarians do have it wrong.

They want to blame government about the sorry state of our nation. They fail to realize that our government has been co-opted by corporate power and that the blame belongs to the corporate elite.

When was the last time that our legislature written laws in the people’s interest? It is always the people rising up to stop pro-corporate legislation from taking effect. SOPA and PIPA being fine examples.

klentz's picture
klentz 10 years 46 weeks ago
#4

Threaten to change internet providers and keep doing it until a few providers see the light and promise not to screen your emails for content. If the demand is large enough, ethical providers will appear and the bad guys will be forced to capitulate. For those of us who are bundled - phone, inet, and cable tv - check out the alternatives. Chances are you are getting overcharged. Comcast (my provider) would roll in a second if enough people threatened to go to Dish or DirectTV. Why? Because the biggest ripoff business in the country are cable providers.

Clarissa Smith's picture
Clarissa Smith 10 years 46 weeks ago
#5

What average users hardly understand: If composer C composes a melody, adds chords and his friend poet P writes lyrics for that tune, all this is copyrighted. If ten years later arranger A writes a piano arrangement for that same tune, he owns the rights for his arrangement and for his probably partly differing chords.

If C dies very young, but P gets pretty old, the melody will be copyright-free one day -- but look out : P's lyrics might still be copyrighted and A's piano arrangement even longer!

If 70 years later a corporation will produce a CD with "Golden Evergreens" and we find our same title on it : look out again : Whose chords did they use? Are the lyrics meanwhile copyright-free (possibly depending on the country)? Did they use A's chords?! The CD producers probably pepped up the sound with a new arrangement! Whatever, the new recording (the sound, not the old melody) will be copyrighted anyway. Every single musician has a right too. So if there is also a saxophon improvisation to hear, the saxophon player owns the right for the notes he played and for the sound of his solo.

If you live in that future now and have that brand-new CD and you want to use the title copyright free.... what now? Well, you better try to look in an archive for the original sheets. You actually need scientific knowledge about music and history to find those 70/80/90 whatsoever years old sheets. You copy them and give those copies to your band-fellows. Or you write an arrangement for your band, using these copies.

Just a little insight by a jazz musician who at times also composed. For common users and consumers this is an awful swamp.

MediaAbuse's picture
MediaAbuse 10 years 46 weeks ago
#6

We've worked in the anti-piracy business for close to five years now. This is how we see it:

The current U.S. DMCA (piracy) regulations need to be strengthened. We need to require file-sharing providers (i.e., Rapidshare, Megaupload) to take down or remove access to reported files (pirated video, movie or song) immediately upon receipt of a DMCA takedown notice. They would still have 10 days to investigate the validity of the notice. But after a file is reported, some file-sharing websites still take their time to remove access to pirated files and in the meantime, hundreds or perhaps thousands or more still have access to it.

That been said, getting countries all over the world to agree to some type of international piracy law would be a good place to start. We don't see that happening. The taking down of Megaupload put some fear into a lot of people, but there are some who still ignore our regulations completely.

J DAILEY's picture
J DAILEY 10 years 46 weeks ago
#7

with a wifi routers and the right software a peer to peer internet is posible without ISP's. of course EVERYONE with wifi would have to participate. microsoft devolped such a software, but has since shelved it.

howardb4 10 years 46 weeks ago
#8

Saying we need Government to protect us from industry is such a flight of fancy. Government and industry have become synonymous. And in which reality does the United States Government in actuality protect American citizens. Americans need the ability to protect themselves from their Government!!

Right now the President of these United States has given himself, with the approval of Congress, the legal right to murder American citizens anywhere on this planet, with no due process. The American Military can now arrest American citizens in America.

What the answer to Obama out Bushing Bush and turning this country into a modern day fascist country, escapes me.

arky12's picture
arky12 10 years 46 weeks ago
#9

I thought UPS was union? If so, they should call a general strike. if they all went out at the same time, I doubt UPS could replace them with anyone who could handle the routes of the experienced drivers. Having worked in the trucking industry for 20 years from terminal level (as a Teamster member) to the general office, I know how this stuff works. In addition to a probable violation of contract, They would be in violation of Federal labor laws.

I am so frustrated with our government reps lately. I call, e-mail them, write letters and go into great details about the Post Office and other issues, and I get nothing but the same old BS. And My Congressman and one of my Senators are so called Democrats, but they act more Republican at times, even voting with the Republicans on issues such as the balanced budget and XL Pipeline. They just go on and on like I'm stupid and just don't get it. I beg to differ with them. I've got a degree from Thom Hartmann University. :) I've also got news from the Democrats in my state, I am a committeeman for the Democratic Party and who does Thom always say has the most power? You got it, the party committeemen/women.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#10

Copyright Trolls

http://torrentfreak.com/anti-piracy-lawyers-sued-for-fraud-abuse-and-ext...

Here's a piece on "Copyright Trolls". Copyright Trolls are the "new ambulance chasers?" They usually work independently of RIAA and MPAA and send you letters demanding from $1000 to $3000 as a settlement (to keep from going to trial) for what they claim is your piracy of downloaded material. I've heard they love going after people who download porn, especially, because of the stigma attached and the probable desire of most people to keep this quiet. These CT lawyers don't really want you to go to trial..they want a quick settlement. There was one CT outfit, Righthaven, that bought up the rights of various newspaper and blog sites and sent out demands for settlements trapping tens of thousands of people...who copied and used that information in other blogs. The courts threw out the cases.

If you ever get a "settlement letter" for an alleged copyright-infringement accusation from a troll, keep in mind that it is "not a lawsuit, and you will face no legal repercussions if you ignore it." However, lawyers recommend that you don't ignore it. "If you receive a settlement letter through your ISP, your name has not yet been revealed to the group that is trying to get your money. Keep it that way. Maintain your privacy at all costs...and contact the plantiff's attorney only through your own attorney or anonymously." ie: "through an email that won't identify you personally".

http://www.pcworld.com/article/230515/so_youre_being_sued_for_piracy.html

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#11

You know one way to put a hurt on these people (although I'm sure it would put a hurt on us too) is to boycott the internet. We are so worried about SOPA or PIPA or any other powerful monied interest or spy agency suing us or spying on us that it would be ironic if we all just quit the internet.

Just cancel your ISP and don't use the internet for..say a month. Blackout the Internet. Read real books for a change. That means no Twitter, or Facebook, or any other social media. If the ISPs see a boycott they may put up a bigger fight against these scam artists and spy agencies.

Read real books for a change. It would take me decades to read all the books I've amassed and probably never will...I've only read some of them, unfortunately.

I keep thinking about that one Twilight Zone show where this man, who worked as a teller in a bank and loved to read, never had the time or solace necessary to read as much as he wanted. Then one day he goes to the vault and the door closed after which the world was destroyed by an atomic war. He survived, got out of the vault to find he was the only person to survive. Now he had all the time in the world, no one to bother him, all the books he could ever want. He was ecstatic, but then....his glasses fell off and broke on the concrete steps of the library leaving him nearly blind. Ironic...

But then, I suppose, if I loaned a book to a friend...they would try to sue me for copyright infringement if they found out...huh?

nonclassical's picture
nonclassical 10 years 45 weeks ago
#12

Thom,
..the only "way" forward is truth. You havn't steadily provided it, though you make mention now and again. Here it is: The U.S. $6.5 trillion, world $16.5 trillion per year economies have been destroyed for over 3 years already, on the way to 10-20 more. Noone has followed the $$$$ to SHOW how much it actually takes to perpetrate this level of economic destruction, nor where that $$$$ is.
Yet it is impossible to keep such a secret. It is 95% owned by 6 U.S. "investment banks" in derivatives market, which went from $880 billion value, 2001, to over $600 trillion by 2007. Forecasts are for another 15 QUARTERS of bankruptcies and foreclosures..we know these banks are holding back for 80%, what would be only worth 35% if market flooded, dribbling bad securities onto market. We know the difference between "securitized mortgages", and "mortgage backed securities", and how each was used by Wall $treet; that difference involves the original move to "securitize" mortgages. We know what "securities" are used for, and the link with Treasury Sec. Paulson who went to SEC to deregulate "leverage"=collateral, 2003. We know Lehman Bros was Goldman-Sachs major competitor; was "leveraged" at 100-1, which caused demise. Challenge people daily to FOLLOW THE $$$$..because noone has-will EVER be able to contradict the numbers, or lie forth an equivalency...lastly, Wall $treet="financial sector" 2001, controlled 19% of U.S. economy-by 2007, that number was 41%...banks trading paper debt. What did people think when bushcheney allowed credit card industry lobbyists to re-write bankruptcy law? I thought one whole helluva lot of people were going to go bankrupt..here's documentation FBI knew, 2004, Wall $treet was criminally corrupting mortgages-securities-but bushcheney shut down investigation-reassigned FBI to homeland security:

http://www.alternet.org/economy/153997/why_do_dangerous_financial_crimin...

Derivatives sources:

http://harpers.org/archive/2009/10/hbc-90006000

http://www.newdeal20.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/raj-revised-testimon...

Clarissa Smith's picture
Clarissa Smith 10 years 45 weeks ago
#13
Quote howardb4:Saying we need Government to protect us from industry is such a flight of fancy.
You are the fancy flier and mighty spinning. Because that's what we're most certainly going to do from 2013 on. We want the free market, but on the market are criminal subjects as well and that's why we need:

Checks & balances, howardb4!!!

So you wanna join those idiots who dream about anarchy. You love chaos, to live the heel, is that so? Anarchy doesn't work and this goes for the free market as well! Libertarians are idiots, PERIOD. We're not going back to stone age. Government was invented to end boundless killing, robbing, frauding, raping, preying, exploiting among humans.

Democratic institutions base on checks & balances and government is part of it in Democracy. Our government is checked & balanced and therefore the only institution to trust! Libertarians want to destroy that trust. Government is not perfect, but it is necessary to keep human rights, order and justice. Do you also have a problem with discipline howardb4? Are you a messy man who cannot accept order?

Clarissa Smith's picture
Clarissa Smith 10 years 45 weeks ago
#14

I was never well enough informed about SOPA and PIPA, to see the extend of a threat. I just joined the SOPA protest in January with my blog sweet&hot. I'm already too much in politics and my field is not so much media issues. But I am a pretty experienced singer and musician and feel like making one more point on copyright........

___________________

Reproducing Gershwin Shellac

If a producer uses a 1920 shellac, with Fred Astaire singing Gershwin, to make a DC on which the sound is very much better than on the original shellac, the improved sound is copyrighted. I guess, if you use that original shellac yourself and burn its sound on CD, you have no copyright problems if you use that in public. But the sound of that producer's tracks sounds very much better and you probably would love to play rather that. But this is not free.

So there you are : What Gershwin composed is copyright-free, the 1920s shellacs on which you can hear Fred Astaire singing Gershwin's songs should be as well. But if you buy a CD with original recordings, this is not the original shellac sound, and this is a copyright issue.

___________________

A Point in Which Government Should 'Break' Copyright

Much more obvious it is with 1930s movies. The pictures bleach out, you hardly understand what they talked and the music sounds hollow and not clear at all. Warner Bros. actually makes reproductions which pretty much have the best quality on the market. The pictures are clear again, the sound is okay. But these reproductions are long-winded and expensive. We have to consider that. If classic movie lovers break the copyright and share these films on the internet, this strangles those reproductions. So if they want corporations like Warner Bros. to re-release more classics in good quality, they better be honest and buy.

I actually think, government should go into this classic movie re-release business too. Because this stuff is all about American culture and history. In Archives there are many films from the 20s and 30s -- partly even older -- that haven't been digitalized yet. These films bleach and bleach and bleach, so it's actually urgent. This is where our government could really create jobs. There are many films, corporations are not re-releasing, because they think they wouldn't sell well enough.

In order to start such a government project, to save valuable old films and create jobs, Congress has to roll back copyright protection -- of course only in this point: If a corporation owns the copyrights for an old movie, but they're not ready to digitalize it in decent quality, our government should have a right to use this movie copyright-free for government reproduction. Because this film doesn't just belong to this corporation, it's also part of American culture and American history.

I assure you, there's lots of work to do.......

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#15

"Here's looking at you kid"

Just yesterday, I saw a preview of the re-released, digitally remastered version of Casablanca on the big screen. Looks and sounds fantastic! It is to be shown for one day only on theaters across the nation next week, Wednesday March 21st. And the DVDs and Blu-Rays will be out on the 27th.

Clarissa Smith's picture
Clarissa Smith 10 years 45 weeks ago
#16

Oh, they digitalized Casablanca again!* I actually have a really decent DVD, but if they did it again it must be really brilliant now. That's fascinating, THANKS! You can't say anything against Casablanca, this is really great art! I'm very much into those 30s movies with Jean Arthur which are pretty sociocritical, as those Busby Berkely musical films from 1933, which addressed the Great Depression.

____________________________

* I bought my version pretty cheap in a shopping mall. Maybe they threw them out, because they already knew they would bring a better one on the market. ;o)

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#17

I forgot to give the source of my reference to the Casablanca film. The Wizard of Oz is also supposed to be remastered and release for it's 75th year annivesary in 2014. I think it would be a lot better to see these on the big screen.

http://www.digitalspy.com/movies/news/a369741/casablanca-for-70th-annive...

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#18

If anyone saw Billl Maher show last week, and this week, they have seen snippets of Alexandra Palosi's documentary films which are ticking off both Republican and Democrats.

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/alexandra-pelosi-debuts-new-video-on-real-tim...

I hope both Palosi and Maher keep up their good work to expose these people and corrupt institutions.

But as Palosi said in her interview by Maher...that even though you may look at this guy (the black guy waiting in line for food stamps who said something like..."I want a career...not just a job!") as typical of many who are milking the system because their egos are too big to take "just a job" (oh, but they don't mind a handout from the government) you have to compare the cost of these programs to the cost of the military spending(which is 10 times greater). The reality is that those rip-off artists in the military industrial complex are really no better than this guy receiving government handouts....they are just as, or even way more disgusting and pathetic than this guy. These MIC "corporate welfare queens" should be equated to lazy connivers bilking the system. They are no better than these guys standing in line for food stamps and if you handed these poor people all that money that the MIC receives...you'd have the same kind of people who currently managed to rip us all off. Just as selfish and smug. How many Wall Street big shots would turn their noses up to "just a job" and say they are too good not to have "a career"...and a well-paid career? These A-holes in these high level positions who call their clients muppets should all be forced into prison-camps and forced to do an honest day's work at hard labor. Then we could all call them someones bitch. Hey, Blankenfein..(rhymes with Frankenstein)..wanna be some jailbird's muppet bitch?

Of course, the fact is that not everyone on food stamps are as smug and conceited as the guy in the film...most would starve...and their families would starve. Most really don't have any choice because they can't find jobs...because even the lowly jobs are not available to anyone but illegal aliens...who don't pay taxes and earn slave wages (which may be sufficient for the Mexican economy but not for ours). Or our jobs are shipped over to China...and they are just not available to those who would work these jobs...if they were only available.

The wealthy, the ones who have unpatriotically and greedily shipped our jobs overseas, and who trapped people into buying "the American Dream" create and control the propaganda that makes the people in the bread lines out to be lazy and undeserving while the wealthy laugh all the way to their offshore banks. They think we are all muppets. 300 million muppets, all armed with scissors, would scare the bejesus out of these future prison butt-buddies, eh? Scissors, to start, may be to cut up all credit cards, voting ballots, or any other symbol of corrupt America. Then, what they do with their scissors would have to be totally up to them. I'm not gonna tell people what to do with their scissors. But, a scissors brigade may be long overdue. Snip, snip here and snip, stab (I mean snip) there. Here a snip, there a snip.....or, we can just go out an vote, again, and again and hope, and then hope again. The definition of insanity, I've heard, is the repetition of the same old thing, expecting change for the better, despite never seeing any positive results.

Sorry, I saw the movie "Spider" with Ralph Fienes last night and I'm off my meds.

Recovering conservative2's picture
Recovering cons... 10 years 45 weeks ago
#19

I think it time for folks to read Lewis Sinclair's "The Jungle" to see how the meat industry handled being under no regulations and completely free market conditions.

Actually if you read about the development of food law, it is usually in response to people taking advantage of free markets without regulations and selling for example colored water as beer so Food regulations were developed.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#20

This just in...scissors banned by HomeLand Security...seig heil..and Mother Mary full of grace! Just kidding! We got regulators alright...and they want to regulate the 99% into being placid and gullible dummies that will swill down their pink slime, risk our money in the casino slot machine that is Wall Street...and keep it there for the long term.

Yes, Lewis Sinclair's "The Jungle" woke up a lot of people about the excesses of capitalism including selling us sewage as food. And they didn't even have Mad Cow Disease (aka: BSE Bovine Spongiform Encephalitis disease when it is in cows and CJD Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease when it is in people) back then...or did they?

You can't kill the infected prion protein that causes Mad Cow Disease because it is not really "alive" to begin with. You can't really destroy it no matter how well you cook it...unlike some of the other dreaded sicknesses caused by bacteria...which can also kill you. But at least if you cook bacteria-laden meat well enough you can kill the bacteria. The CDC says that the "incubation period may be as long as 50 years".

BSE eats holes in your brain and there is nothing they can do about it once you become infected. You will start getting Parkinson's disease-like symptoms and then you will die. I stopped eating beef and "red meats" a long time ago because of the Mad Cow Diseases that were reported to have broken out in Britain. Now if chickens or fish ever start infecting us with Mad Chicken or Mad Fish disease then I will have to go strictly vegan, I suppose.

This is worse than any so-called "terrorist"... and Homeland Security is not even watching out for it. Our FDA has been just as emasculated as the other government watchdog that used to go after financial criminals. The CDC is studying it, I suppose, but one wonders just how muted the CDC might be by the meat industry and, perhaps, overly cautious about admitting the dangers of eating some meats..like beef..and some other red meats.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#21

"An Afghan parliamentary investigation team has implicated up to 20 US troops in the massacre of 16 civilians in Kandahar early on Sunday morning. It contradicts NATO's account that insists one rogue soldier was behind the slaughter.

­The team of Afghan lawmakers has spent two days collating reports from witnesses, survivors and inhabitants of the villages where the tragedy took place.

“We are convinced that one soldier cannot kill so many people in two villages within one hour at the same time, and the 16 civilians, most of them children and women, have been killed by the two groups,” investigator Hamizai Lali told Afghan News."

http://rt.com/news/massacre-kandahar-soldier-american-705/

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Scoundrel-Media-Afghan-Mas-by-Stephen-L...

This, of course, is not unusual....US has often used the "crazy lone gunman" as a patsy to take all the heat. Much easier for the public to shrug off, after a while, and much less complicated so that the truth can more easily be buried.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#22

Zangabad Village Massacres,
According to the investigative team who interviewed relatives and other citizens of the villages, were done in the middle of the night by two teams of US soldiers and lasted about an hour and females were sexually abused after which they tried to destroy evidence by burning the lower half of the bodies.

http://www.pajhwok.com/en/2012/03/15/20-us-troops-executed-panjwai-massa...

How is this for a scenario...
Robert Bales (38 with 11 years in the Army) was having a lot of financial problems..two houses that he was losing because they were having problems paying for them..thanks in large part because of the housing scam bursting the bubble and making mortgages much larger than the potential sales price.

One house was very run down, with no running water, and not lived in for several years, according to neighbors...and it had a sign on it saying "Do Not Occupy".

He had been on 3 previous deployments to Iraq, and wanted to be deployed again to Afghanistan (because he liked it? Friends and neighbors said that he liked the military and going to Iraq. Or, because of financial problems?). His wife seemed to be getting discouraged (understandably) with the financial problems and the many years of separation, even though she had work at a small (all-female, I've read) business communications company. I've heard sources say that they were having marital problems (again, if this is true, very understandable).

So, what if the massacres in Afghanistan were carried out by up to 20 US soldiers, females raped or sexually molested (as it has been reported) and this explosive situation needed to be covered up. But since it was unlikely that it could be covered up, they needed to find a patsy to take the heat away from what would otherwise be seen as an institutional problem.

We don't know what Robert Bales has said, or will say...and it is quite possible that he has agreed to take the heat in exchange for large sums of money. His family would be taken care of..and he may even get out of the brig one day to enjoy the money. Either way, if he is just a patsy, voluntarily or involuntarily, he could very well be in danger of some unfortunate accident or untraceable "natural" demise while in the brig. Those other guys who allegedly participated in the massacre may also be in danger...yet another helicopter accident? That's the way these criminal elite do things. They get rid of anyone who could talk.

The story we get from the military is that Robert Bales got drunk and went on a murdering rampage. As part of their propaganda, they claim that they found booz in his living quarters. So, if they didn't plant it...could the other soldiers have been partying..perhaps along with Bales...or maybe Bales was just part of the 20 soldiers that participated? Like a good soldier...and one who might have been bribed...he would take the fall for the massacres?

Robert Bales' attorney has said that Robert Bales didn't have a "drinking problem". Yeah, I know, whose going to believe a liar, I mean lawyer?

The Afghan investigative team said that they didn't believe that one man could do all of these massacres...and along with the eyewitness reports of up to 20 US soldiers, in two teams, raping, killing, and then even trying to destroy evidence by burning the victims...and why did they set the lower halfs of the bodies on fire? Maybe to destroy evidence of rape?

The "official" US story sounds very fishy and not very sound. But then again, so has it been for all of the other atrocities that the US has tried to get us to believe in. Pearl Harbor, Kennedy/Lee Harvey Oswald, OKC bombing, 911 and many others.

The 3 letter agencies have used the sucker/patsy routine many, many times. Like that Iranian car dealer in Texas that had massive financial problems...they tried to set him up to be the next terrorist-bust they like to pride themselves with.

joliver's picture
joliver 10 years 45 weeks ago
#23

Thom, your diagnose of the problem is impecable. However, your solution is dead wrong. How can more government generate more freedom? Libertarians are not wrong. They stand for the right of the individual to do as they wish. If you have a bunch of politicians under the pocket of the corporations deciding on our destiny, we are all doomed. You think washington can protect us from corporations. In reality, government collude with corporations and create a control grid that reduces individual freedoms. I like your honesty and style Thom, but I don't agree with some of your views about the benefits of big government.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 10 years 45 weeks ago
#24

I'd bet that Robert Bales won't go through the same kind of hell that they have put Bradley Manning through. After all,
7 years ago, 24 Iraqi civilians, in Haditha, were targeted and assassinated by 9 US servicemen and none of them have every been punished for their crimes. Oh, the leader got a slap on the wrist.

You can't call these massacres collateral damage but rather targeted assassinations of innocent civilians. And I believe that the authorities are trying to cover up by using Robert Bales as a patsy. Mind control? Manchurian candidate in so far as he was made to believe he did this all himself? Paid off to take the heat?

And now, the authorities are saying they have a video of Robert Bales turning himself in...taken from a spy balloon. Although, they haven't released that video...or if they even ever would (yeah, like the military has promised to release the Granai Massacre video, three years ago, when Julian Assange said he had the videos too and would release his as well...but he never has either...I suspect it is so horrible that it would create a lot of controversy and Assange is holding on to it as insurance).

And talking about spying....
Here's an article about CIA spying:
CIA Chief: We’ll Spy on You Through Your Dishwasher

By Spencer Ackerman
Email Author
March 15, 2012 |

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/03/petraeus-tv-remote/#more-76086

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 10 years 45 weeks ago
#25

What can be done to counter the current full blown republican fascism benefitting only the 1%? First we need a govt. willing and able to represent the vast majority, the 99%, of it's citizens. In a true democracy, corporate tyranny would dissipate with both lawful regulations and the unionization of most workplace settings. How do we do this?

Sadly, for now anyway, it may be as simple, yet difficult, as the 99% out spending anti-democracy pimps like the Kochs and replacing their Cantor/Ryan whores with true democracy reps like Senator Sanders......and occupy everything in sight!

Clarissa Smith's picture
Clarissa Smith 10 years 45 weeks ago
#26

Things partly still seem to go wrong 2950-10K. The other day Norman Goldman reported on his radio show, there was a new Democratic Congressman appointed : a blue-dog, obviously quite a bit GOP-friendly--bLaH. I forgot the state, it was somewhere in the west -- not the Middle West, not Pacific...... Whatever, we really need a decent majority in Senate and House, to change something over the comming four years. No progressive should waste their votes, otherwise we might get a Congress dominated by blue-dogs and teabaggers. With such Congress cast even Karl Marx couldn't govern any other way else but corporate right-wing policy. So please don't waste your votes, progressives!

We constantly have to remind fellow-progressives : voting for progressive parties on the left of President Obama mustn't necessarily be wrong, BUT : it MUST be a party that has a realistic chance to get into Congress! I certainly might vote for Bernie Sanders, if I lived in Vermont. I never heard him talk against the President -- he's actually Obama-friendly. So if some progressives like Senator Sanders, but dislike President Obama, something's not logical about this philosophy.....

Whatsoever, laws are being made in CONGRESS, the President just signs them. This is why I lately stress : let's talk about CONGRESS, folks!!

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