Partnership between Facebook and police could make planning protests impossible
A partnership between police departments and social media sites discussed at a convention in Philadelphia this week could allow law enforcement to keep anything deemed criminal off the Internet—and even stop people from organizing protests.
A high-ranking official from the Chicago Police Department told attendees at a law enforcement conference on Monday that his agency has been working with a security chief at Facebook to block certain users from the site “if it is determined they have posted what is deemed criminal content,” reports Kenneth Lipp, an independent journalist who attended the lecture.
Lipp reported throughout the week from the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference, and now says that a speaker during one of the presentations suggested that a relationship exists between law enforcement and social media that that could be considered a form of censorship.
I hope that headline gets the Times’ attention.
Anyone who’s interested in the Great Gray Lady’s failure to report the Nazi genocide should check out Buried by the Times: The Holocaust and America’s Most Important Newspaper, an exemplary history by Laurel Leff (Cambridge University Press, 2006).
As for the Times on Fukushima, note first that the paper’s coverage has been intermittent, slight and mostly buried, in articles that talk around the global consequences of this international disaster; then note David Ropeik’s sedative op ed—”Fear vs. Radiation: The Mismatch” —which ran on Oct. 21, claiming that “the radiation from Fukushima has been relatively harmless.”
It isn’t just the Times, of course, since Fukushima has been largely blacked out by the corporate press in general (although CBS News has done more than the Times).
So what’s the deal? Why the silence? It’s as if the mayor in Jaws were now in charge of our free press…
1) 28 Signs That The West Coast Is Being Absolutely Fried With Nuclear Radiation From Fukushima :: link ::
2) Fukushima Ho Hum :: link ::
3) Fuel Removal From Fukushima’s Reactor 4 Threatens ‘Apocalyptic’ Scenario :: link ::
… although it’s not just Alabama.
Where have Holder and Obama been throughout the Rove/GOP
reign of terror in the Cotton State?
October 26, 2013
Andrew Kreig: Alabama Journalist
Roger Shuler Beaten and Arrested
By Joan Brunwasser
Roger’s arrest stems from his reporting and commentary about political, government, legal, sexual, and financial intrigues normally kept out of the media that the public sees. He has made the courageous and public-spirited decision that the public deserves to know in keeping with our constitutional and other mantras about the right of free expression, and the need for it in a democracy.
My guest today is Justice Integrity Project’s Andrew Kreig. Welcome back to OpEdNews, Andrew.
JB: I just saw a headline that Alabama-based investigative journalist Legal Schnauzer, Roger Shuler was arrested. What can you tell us about this upsetting turn of events?
AK: Joan, thanks so much for having me back. This is a breaking news story that is both dramatic and important to every reader concerned about justice and the First Amendment.
Roger Shuler, the prominent progressive blogger whose columns frequently appear in OEN, was arrested and beaten by Shelby County sheriff’s deputies at his Alabama garage upon returning home about 6 p.m. Oct. 23 from the local library. Roger faces a resisting arrest charge stemming from his refusal to obey a judge’s order to stop writing about an affair he alleges involved Robert Riley Jr., a well-connected attorney who is part of Alabama’s most prominent political family.
Later, authorities were holding Shuler indefinitely on two contempt of court charges issued by a judge in what seems like a “kangaroo court.” There’s no bond available. Also, Roger must post a $1,000 bond on his charge of resisting arrest for a struggle that occurred in his garage, which is attached to his home in Birmingham.
But there are much larger free press issues at stake than simply his freedom, or that of his wife, Carol.
As Europe erupts over US spying, NSA chief says government must stop media
With General Alexander calling for NSA reporting to be halted, US and UK credibility as guardians of press freedom is crushed
theguardian.com, Friday 25 October 2013 15.22 EDT
The most under-discussed aspect of the NSA story has long been its international scope. That all changed this week as both Germany and France exploded with anger over new revelations about pervasive NSA surveillance on their population and democratically elected leaders.
As was true for Brazil previously, reports about surveillance aimed at leaders are receiving most of the media attention, but what really originally drove the story there were revelations that the NSA is bulk-spying on millions and millions of innocent citizens in all of those nations. The favorite cry of US government apologists -–everyone spies! – falls impotent in the face of this sort of ubiquitous, suspicionless spying that is the sole province of the US and its four English-speaking surveillance allies (the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand).
There are three points worth making about these latest developments.
Grassley on Boston Bombing
By David J. Krajicek on Oct 25, 2013
In case you missed it (as did most of the national media), here’s a link to U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley’s letter taking the FBI to task for its troubling lack of transparency in the Boston Bombing investigation.
Grassley, a senior Republican from Iowa and a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is peeved because the Bureau and Director James Comey have stonewalled him on a series a questions he asked in June about the bombing.
In his letter, Grassley hints that Cambridge, Mass., police believe the FBI had identified the Tsarnaev brothers as suspects and had a large team of agents on stakeout for them at Cambridge’s Central Square without sharing the information with local authorities.
An Injunction Against the Truth
by Walter Brasch
Monday morning, Oct. 21, 2013. Vera Scroggins, a retired real estate agent and nurse’s aide, was in Common Pleas Court for Susquehanna County, Pa., to explain why a temporary injunction should not be issued against her.
Before her were four lawyers and several employees of Cabot Gas and Oil, who accused her of trespassing and causing irreparable harm to the company that had almost $1 billion in revenue in 2012. They didn’t want her on their property they owned or leased in the Marcellus Shale.
Scroggins is an anti-fracking activist, someone who not only knows what is happening in the gas fields of northeastern Pennsylvania, but willingly devotes much of her day to helping others to see and understand the damage fracking causes. Since 2010, she had led visitors, government officials, and journalists on tours of the gas fields, to rigs and well pads, pipelines, compressor stations, and roads damaged by the heavy volume of truck traffic necessary to build and support the wells. As part of her tours, she introduces the visitors to those affected by fracking, to the people of northeast Pennsylvania who have seen their air and water polluted, their health impacted. The visitors come from New York, which has a moratorium on fracking; from Pennsylvania, which doesn’t; from surrounding states and from foreign countries, who want to see what fracking is, and what it does.
Link to donate: “Shuler, shortly before his jailing, installed a Paypal button for donations on his website, Legal Schnauzer.”
Alabama Deputies Beat, Arrest Corruption-Fighting Reporter
Written by Andrew Kreig
Published on October 25, 2013
The prominent investigative blogger Roger Shuler was arrested and beaten by Shelby County sheriff’s deputies at his Alabama garage upon returning home Oct. 23.
Shuler faces a resisting arrest charge stemming from his refusal to obey a judge’s order to stop writing adversely about Robert Riley Jr., a well-connected attorney who is part of Alabama’s most prominent political family.
Shuler, shown in a jail photos with a swollen face from his beating, was being held on a $1,000 bond on his resisting charge. But the judge has declined to set bond on two contempt of court charges, thereby enabling authorities to hold Shuler for an undetermined period that could be many months at the judge’s discretion.
What would the museum’s founders say?
From the address by Joseph H. Choate, one of the Met’s first trustees, on the museum’s opening day, March 29, 1880:
The erection of this building, at the expense of the public treasury for the uses of an art-museum, was an act of signal forethought and wisdom on the part of the Legislature. A few reluctant taxpayers have grumbled at it as beyond the legitimate objects of government, and if art were still, as it once was, the mere plaything of courts and palaces, ministering to the pride and the luxury of the rich and the voluptuous, there might be some force in the objection.
“But now that art belongs to the people, and has become their best resource and most efficient educator, if it be within the real objects of government to promote the general welfare, to make education practical, to foster commerce, to instruct and encourage the trades, and to enable the industries of our people to keep pace with, instead of falling hopelessly behind, those of other States and other Nations, then no expenditure could be more wise, more profitable, more truly republican.
“It is this same old-fashioned and exploded idea, which regards all that relates to art as the idle pastime of the favored few, and not, as it really is, as the vital and practical interest of the working millions, that has so long retarded its progress among us.”
Mayor Bloomberg grants Metropolitan Museum of Art right to charge mandatory entrance fee
New York City’s outgoing mayor has entered the museum’s legal dispute and granted it the right to impose a mandatory entrance fee of $25 or more.
By Barbara Ross AND Jennifer Fermino / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Friday, October 25, 2013, 5:18 AM
The Metropolitan Museum of Art can now charge an entrance fee of $25 or more.
The Met has acquired a new masterpiece — a lease that allows it to charge museumgoers whatever it wants.
And the museum has a well-known and wealthy arts patron to thank: Mayor Bloomberg.
Hizzoner waded into the legal dispute over the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s admissions practices by granting it the right to impose a mandatory entrance fee of $25 or more.
NYC hurricane expert: “Sandy wasn’t the Big One”
By Greg Hanscom
One year ago today, Superstorm Sandy was just a twinkle in meteorologists’ eyes. The storm, which kicked up from a low-pressure area in the Caribbean Sea on Oct. 22, wouldn’t become an official hurricane for two days still. Even after it gained official hurricane status, raking across Jamaica and Cuba and soaking the Bahamas, U.S. weather models predicted that it would spin off into the North Atlantic and peter out, as most such storms do.
But Sandy did something different. After briefly losing steam, it rolled northward along the Eastern Seaboard and then veered left like a car that had just lost a wheel, barreling into the Jersey Shore and pushing storm tides through the streets of New York City. When the skies finally cleared and Wall Street opened back up, at least 159 people were dead, and the storm had caused $65 billion in damages and relocated the city’s rat population.
It was a shocking turn of events. Hurricane Irene had given New York a good scare (and New England a thorough drubbing) in August 2011, but the last time a major hurricane had hit the city was 1938. That storm killed 600 people, according to a New York Times report. But after decades of relative quiet, many New Yorkers doubted it would happen again. It’s easy, in those canyons of concrete and brick, to imagine that nothing will change.
Bulletin: Alabama Blogger Roger Shuler Arrested for “Contempt” of Kangaroo Court
by Peter B. Collins on October 24, 2013
Roger Shuler, the intrepid journalist who runs the Legal Schnauzer blog and a longtime contributor to this program, was arrested Wednesday evening and is jailed in Shelby County, Alabama–perhaps indefinitely. Shuler has been sued by prominent Alabama Republican Rob Riley for exposing Riley’s extramarital affair. As detailed in our recent podcast on October 8, a retired judge who has only heard Riley’s side of the story has issued an illegal injunction on the Shulers and their blog, which violates the First Amendment and court precedents on prior restraint.
Following a staged traffic stop, a deputy attempted to serve Shuler with papers; Shuler filed a motion to quash the injunction and contempt orders last week. Despite no hearing or other process, Shuler was arrested. In this update, Carol Shuler relates the arrest, injuries to her husband, and an urgent need for financial and legal support. Please help in any way that you can!
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