Liveblogging the War on Information
Some of us are nervously awaiting whether or not Obama will veto the National Defense Authorization Act, S.1867, the bill that turns the U.S. into a battlefield, where American citizens can be detained, tortured, and executed without trial. Some of us are confused about what S.1867 means. And many more of us are busy being vaguely threatened by Chaz Bono.
But while we wait, because politely waiting to see whether we’re all military targets is probably best, it’s worth connecting the fat dots between oppression and censorship.
Mubarak turned off the internets. The Bay Area Railroad Transit shut off mobile service when people protested against the murderous BART cops. When people have the capacity to openly express their views, thugs have a hard time.
Well, now the FCC has set the ill-defined rules, for shutting down wireless communications, and they’re siding with the heavy handed BART in tipping the balance from 1st Amendment rights to “ensuring public safety.” What won’t we do in the name of public safety?
This is all to the backdrop of the impending Senate vote on Protect IP, the internet censorship bill, which will give U.S. citizens the same dismal web experience as Iranians and the Chinese.
And in the latest front in the War on Information, an Oregon court has ruled that bloggers aren’t covered by journalist shield-laws. Even if this is the law:
No person connected with, employed by or engaged in any medium of communication to the public shall be required by … a judicial officer … to disclose, by subpoena or otherwise … [t]he source of any published or unpublished information obtained by the person in the course of gathering, receiving or processing information for any medium of communication to the public[.]
Yeah. This is of some concern to me — a “liberal blogger,” as David Gregory calls me, who was recently arrested for filming a cop while covering a story. But these things should concern us all. Citizen journalism is critically important in a country where its highest rated cable news outlet cites fabricated Constitution sections to further its depraved political ends.
And that’s just their latest untruth, of course. Fox News, and all “real” media by precedent, has long had the legal right to lie to its viewers.
There’s a terrifying dearth of s.1867 coverage by the MSM. And on the Web, the story is a confused one, with people wrongly believing and arguing that U.S. citizens cannot be detained — this from ostensibly reputable journals. We, too, had some concern trolling at The BEAST. Even a civil rights stalwart like Glenn Greenwald was mostly silent about this thing. He “couldn’t get [himself] worked up over a bill that, with some exceptions, does little more than formally recognize and codify what our Government is already doing.” Fair enough; it codifies. But call me worked up. A tad.
Most infuriating, for consumers of internet news, the S.1867 story is covered in the foul stench of Alex Jones. Google the issue, and you’ll see that guy’s dumb fucking face, which makes reasonable people think s.1867 critics are likely insane. Because:
So that’s the deal. In a short time, you may not be able to find The BEAST in search engines. Or you may not be able to find me because I’m in GITMO for writing “Fuck the Troops 2″. Or maybe you’ll be there, too, for simply exercising your 1st Amendment rights.
I guess all we can do is wait. Right?