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   PastimesClown-Free Zone... sorry, no clowns allowed


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From: Broken_Clock7/15/2021 2:12:27 PM
   of 435945
 
On the Difference Between Smearing and ArguingIn response to "Spying and Smearing are Un-American, Not Tucker Carlson"



In response to the predictably voluminous criticisms of yesterday’s article, “ Spying and Smearing is ‘Un-American,’ not Tucker Carlson”:

I disagree with Tucker Carlson on a variety of issues. I’m not saying this to “distance myself,” but rather to make a point that imagine he’d agree with, also the point of the article: there’s a difference between disagreeing, and what we’ve begun to do in media since Trump’s arrival.

Take one of Carlson’s most-criticized recent statements:


Tucker Carlson @TuckerCarlson
#Tucker: Why does America benefit from having tons of people from failing countries come here? @FoxNews
June 30th 2017

2,127 Retweets6,450 Likes

I disagree with the assumption that people who come to America from countries more dysfunctional than ours will bring the problems of their home countries with them. It’s an oft-cited statistic, but Nigerian immigrants are the most educated people in America, with 61% holding at least a Bachelor’s degree, nearly twice the rate of both native-born Americans and immigrants overall. There are similar numbers involving immigrants from South Asia, Korea, China, and other parts of the world.

Were this a debate with Carlson, I’d argue that conservatives are the ones who should be howling for more immigration, as three out of four naturalized immigrants say they are “very proud” of being Americans. This is a much higher number than native-born Americans, 69% of whom say they are “ashamed” of some parts of our culture (just 39% of immigrants agree). Immigrants work at a higher rate than native-born Americans, their children are educated at higher rates, and maybe the most patriotic.

He’d counter, and I can imagine what some of those arguments would be. But he’d be happy to have the debate. He might change my mind about some things, perhaps I’d change his about others. The other day, he described looking on Twitter after the Cuba situation blew up. “Three separate prominent conservative figures were against American intervention,” he said. “That’s change.”

The perception that conservatives don’t change their minds is as stupid as my belief that liberals would never cozy up to the CIA and NSA turned out to be. Conservative attitudes toward war, gay rights, surveillance and a host of other issues have shifted radically in recent years. Also, people don’t act and think solely as groups, as there’s enormous variance within every demographic. Pretending otherwise is a pernicious media myth. But I’m getting off track.

Here’s what we do now, instead of arguing: we fling terms like “white supremacist,” “transphobe,” “conspiracy theorist,” and “fascist” around, knowing that if the words stick, they lead to outcomes: boycotts, firings, removal from Internet platforms, etc. When Brian Stelter and Oliver Darcy compare Carlson to Alex Jones, they do this knowing Jones was booted off the Internet, so it’s a not-so-subtle way of voting for that same outcome.

Fine, many of you will say; I want Tucker Carlson booted off the air, and the Internet. I’d argue there are a lot of problems with thinking that way (this is exactly what censorship proponents said they wouldn’t do three years ago when the Jones situation happened, i.e. start arguing for removal of more mainstream conservatives), but beyond that, the technique isn’t limited just to Carlson.

When Ezra Klein proposed an open borders policy to Bernie Sanders years ago, Sanders balked, saying it was a Koch Brothers idea designed to provide big companies with cheap labor. Pundits were apoplectic. “Bernie Sanders's fear of immigrant labor is ugly — and wrongheaded,” decried Vox. The Guardian said he’d fueled “domestic, nativist sentiments,” while Jacobin said he’d “played into a right-wing nativist trap.” Buzzfeed later compared his stance to that of Trump advisor Stephen Miller, “known for his anti-immigrant, white nationalist rhetoric.”

Sanders spent much of his five years as a presidential contender fending off such not-so-subtle accusations of racism, nativism, misogyny, “toxicity,” being “alt-right” and “alt-left,” being a “white savior figure,” being a useful idiot for Russia, even anti-Semitism. When he criticized the press, or talked about “elites,” he was accused of being Trump. There was very little direct engagement with him on his policy beliefs, and a lot more rhetoric aimed at him as a person, most of which was unanswerable.

Sanders, who was popular in the same media spaces I worked in, where being labeled a bigot is the worst thing imaginable, never quite figured out how to deal with these criticisms. He tried to change his message downplaying “identity politics,” proposed a near-total moratorium on deportations, and repeatedly made the mistake of validating bogus or bad-faith criticisms of him, for instance agreeing that online “Bernie Bros” were “ disgusting” and pledging to do something about “that crap.

None of it worked, and criticisms only intensified. He should have called out the tactic. Regarding Bernie Bros: all candidate bases have vicious online communities, and some are filled with clearly paid instigators, who even win praise in other outlets writing about other candidates. The Los Angeles Times saluted Kamala Harris for nurturing an effective “modern political army” in the “K-Hive,” which had trolls writing all sorts of racist and lurid things, like “ Gotta kill, very violently.” As Matt Orfalea in Grayzone pointed out, the hypocrisy in the treatments of the two movements was transparent, as seen in this pair of Daily Beast headlines:


This has become our whole style of political argument: hit someone with an unanswerable accusation and then, as Lyndon Johnson would say, make the sonofabitch deny it.

It’s why so much effort was spent denouncing “economic anxiety” as code for racism, why Hillary Clinton accused both Jill Stein and Tulsi Gabbard of being foreign assets, why the New Yorker ran a story arguing Glenn Greenwald’s criticism of Russiagate was rooted in his disdain for “the ascendance of women and people of color in the [Democratic] Party,” why Cenk Uygur is accusing “alt left” enemies of being “ paid by the Russians,” why Current Affairs went after impossibly congenial podcast host Krystal Ball by accusing cohort Saagar Enjeti of being a human gateway drug to Hitler, why critics went after Substack by claiming it was racist and transphobic (or, most amusingly lately, “ bad for democracy”), why former New York Times editorial page editor James Bennet was ousted for putting the lives of black staff “ in danger” by running a Tom Cotton editorial, and, yes, why Andrew Weissman went after Carlson by saying sowing distrust in the NSA is “un-American.”

These are all debate-pre-emptive strategies. When Clinton went after Gabbard, we stopped talking about whether or not military intervention in Syria was a good idea, and moved to debating whether Gabbard was an accomplice to genocide. Critics of Russiagate from the start had to calculate their appetites for being accused of supporting Putin or Trump. Anyone even considering going on Fox now can expect to spend years answering questions about abetting fascism and white supremacy. Argument goes out the door: the discourse becomes entirely about courage and career risk. How much flak are you willing to take? How much can you afford to take?

This is why people who probably have very different or even opposite politics on the policy level, like Greenwald and Carlson, are suddenly in a broadcast partnership. They’re part of a dwindling club left in major media who are defying these tactics. In a hypothetical universe where this moral panic era subsides, one could envision them going back to violently arguing with one another over immigration, spending, policing, etc. But for now they’re on the same side, not on issues, but against a tactic.

It’s become fashionable especially in Democratic Party politics (but more lately on the Republican side, too) to embrace this maximalist form of debate on the grounds that it works. De-platforming works, boycotts work, shaming works, they say; shaming is how we effect change. These people like to point to the fact that Alex Jones is effectively a non-factor in public life now, and Milo Yiannopoulos has vanished, even Donald Trump is a sideshow, and so on.

Two things about this. One, just because you can’t see someone anymore, doesn’t mean they’re not there. Donald Trump’s 74 million supporters haven’t disappeared just because Trump’s off Twitter. They’re now listening in the tens of millions to shows like Steve Bannon’s War Room. True, advertisers are mass-boycotting Carlson, but if they succeed in getting his show pulled, that audience won’t go to CNN, they’ll find some other haven. Maybe their next broadcast guru will be someone who doesn’t ask Sidney Powell for evidence of election fraud, doesn’t warn about Covid-19 early, doesn’t argue against war in Iran or Syria. If you’re going to try to eliminate this or that voice, be aware there’s a downstream calculation involved that may not turn out the way you think.

Point two is related: rhetorical coercion tends to backfire. For all the relentless messaging about how Trump’s racism left nonwhite voters with only one choice last fall — an idea symbolized by Joe Biden’s off-the-cuff “ You ain’t black” comment — Trump gained with every nonwhite demographic last fall. This was an eyebrow-raising political story, but an absolutely extraordinary media story, one that spoke to the fact that even mass quantities of certain types of messaging can be counterproductive.

Remember how Republicans in the Bush era talked about blue-state enemies? Their conventional wisdom was that liberals equated with terrorists, liberalism was a “ mental disorder,” liberalism was “ treason.” Their rhetoric did not include a vision for the other half of America outside of conversion or expulsion. Plenty of this is still going on, but the updated version is prevalent now among Democrats, who are trying to make a strategy of absolute non-engagement stick with additional tools like platform censorship and domestic surveillance.

As any married person knows, there are certain words you never say in a fight, because you’ll still be living together when it’s over. Americans, like it or not, are married to one another. That’s not accommodationist talk, it’s just fact. The people we disagree with aren’t going anywhere, and it makes more sense to talk to them than not.

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From: Broken_Clock7/17/2021 2:10:16 PM
2 Recommendations   of 435945
 
It only took 7 months for the fascists to fully remove their masks.

White House Admits To Flagging Posts To Be Censored By Facebook

by Tyler Durden

Friday, Jul 16, 2021 - 11:00 PM
Authored by Jonathan Turley,

We have previously discussed the extensive censorship programs maintained by Big Tech, including companies like Twitter and Facebook taking sides in major controversies from gender identification to election fraud to Covid-19. The rise of corporate censors has combined with a heavily pro-Biden media to create the fear of a de facto state media that controls information due to a shared ideology rather than state coercion. That concern has been magnified by demands from Democratic leaders for increased censorship, including censoring political speech, and now word that the Biden Administration has routinely been flagging material to be censored by Facebook.

[url=][/url]

White House press secretary Jen Psaki admitted that the Biden administration is working with Facebook to flag “problematic” posts that “spread disinformation” on COVID-19. She explained that the Administration has created “aggressive” policing systems to spot “misinformation” to be “flagged” for the social media companies.

The concern is obvious that this allows for a direct role of the government in a massive censorship program run by private companies. There have been repeated examples of the censoring of stories that were embarrassing or problematic for the Biden Administration. Even when Twitter expressed regret for the censoring of the Hunter Biden laptop story before the election, there was an immediate push back for greater censorship from Democrats.

The concern is that these companies are taking to heart calls from Democratic members for increased censorship on the platform. CEO Jack Dorsey previously apologized for censoring the Hunter Biden story before the election. However, rather than addressing the dangers of such censoring of news accounts, Senator Chris Coons pressed Dorsey to expand the categories of censored material to prevent people from sharing any views that he considers “climate denialism.” Likewise, Senator Richard Blumenthal seemed to take the opposite meaning from Twitter, admitting that it was wrong to censor the Biden story. Blumenthal said that he was “concerned that both of your companies are, in fact, backsliding or retrenching, that you are failing to take action against dangerous disinformation.” Accordingly, he demanded an answer to this question:

“Will you commit to the same kind of robust content modification playbook in this coming election, including fact checking, labeling, reducing the spread of misinformation, and other steps, even for politicians in the runoff elections ahead?”

“Robust content modification” seems the new Orwellian rallying cry in our society.

The same problems have arisen on Covid stories. For a year, Big Tech has been censoring those who wanted to discuss the origins of pandemic. It was not until Biden admitted that the virus may have originated in the Wuhan lab that social media suddenly changed its position. Facebook only recently announced that people on its platform will be able to discuss the origins of Covid-19 after censoring any such discussion.

The back channel coordination with Facebook further supports the view that this is a de facto state-supporting censorship program. That is the basis for the recent lawsuit by former President Donald Trump. As I have previously noted, there is ample basis for objection to this arrangement but the legal avenue for challenges is far from clear. The lawsuit will face difficult if not insurmountable problems under existing law and precedent. There is no question companies like Twitter are engaging in raw censorship. It is also true that these companies have censored material with a blatantly biased agenda, taking sides on scientific and social controversies. A strong case can be made for stripping these companies of legal protections since they are no longer neutral platforms. However, private businesses are allowed to regulate speech as a general matter. It will take considerable heavy lifting for a court to order this injunctive relief.

That is why we need legislative action. That includes removal immunity protections. However, the government should also consider the creation of an alternative to these companies which are now a threat to our political system. A few companies now control a huge amount of the political discourse in this country and have shown a clear bias in taking sides (even on issues later found to be wrong). Since litigation is likely to fail, legislation would seem an imperative. Congress has been spending hundreds of billions with utter abandon. Yet, there is little discussion over a government subsidized platform for social media or other measures to break up this unprecedented level of corporate control over our political discourse. I am no fan of government programs, particularly as it relates to media. However, Apple, Google, and these other companies are now operating like monopolies, including crushing competitors like Parlor. That is a direct and growing threat to our political process.

We need to consider a short-term investment in a social media platform that will focus any censorship on direct threats or criminal conduct. There is currently a lack of not only competition but any real opportunity for competition to challenge these companies. Either we have to redefine what we treat as monopolies or we need to invest in the establishment of competing platforms that are content neutral like telephone companies.

This is why I have described myself as an Internet Originalist:

The alternative is “internet originalism” — no censorship. If social media companies returned to their original roles, there would be no slippery slope of political bias or opportunism; they would assume the same status as telephone companies. We do not need companies to protect us from harmful or “misleading” thoughts. The solution to bad speech is more speech, not approved speech.

If Pelosi demanded that Verizon or Sprint interrupt calls to stop people saying false or misleading things, the public would be outraged. Twitter serves the same communicative function between consenting parties; it simply allows thousands of people to participate in such digital exchanges. Those people do not sign up to exchange thoughts only to have Dorsey or some other internet overlord monitor their conversations and “protect” them from errant or harmful thoughts.

The actions by Twitter and Facebook on Election Day were reprehensible and wrong. That should have been sufficient cause for action by Congress. It is now growing more precarious and chilling by the day.

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To: Terry Maloney who wrote (430468)7/22/2021 10:27:26 PM
From: Thomas M.
2 Recommendations   of 435945
 
Yet another reason Cheney should burn in hell ...
I agree, but here you are "recommending" a post which fawns over Liz Cheney:
true to her principles and has maintained her dignity. Gotta respect that.

Message 33407446
Liz Cheney and Dick Cheney have identical policy views and priorities. You can't rationally love one and hate the other.
  • the Neocons lay out a plan to overthrow every Middle Eastern government
  • Dick Cheney follows the plan, you hate him
  • Obama follows the plan, you like him
  • Trump trashes the plan, you hate him
  • Liz Cheney wants to restart the plan, you love her
I can't decide if you're an unprincipled partisan airhead or just an emotional basket case who's been rattled by Trump.

Tom

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To: Thomas M. who wrote (435901)7/23/2021 9:12:44 AM
From: Terry Maloney
   of 435945
 
>> I can't decide if you're an unprincipled partisan airhead or just an emotional basket case who's been rattled by Trump. <<

Take your pick, I couldn't care less.

As for the rest, you're no better at context than the clown who rec'd your post.

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To: Terry Maloney who wrote (435902)7/23/2021 12:52:07 PM
From: Broken_Clock
   of 435945
 
(CNSNews.com) - Since the start of the pandemic 18 months ago, in January 2020, a total of 335 children ages 17 and under have died of COVID-19, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In that same 18-month time period, a total of 49,725 children ages 0-17 have died from all causes. So COVID deaths account for 0.673 percent of all deaths among children under 17, based on death certificates submitted so far to the National Center for Health Statistics.

--- yet Dems want to experiment with unproven "vaccines" on kids

who is the clown Terry?

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To: Broken_Clock who wrote (435903)7/23/2021 2:03:38 PM
From: Terry Maloney
   of 435945
 
That would be you.

Message 33408620

Message 33408787

Message 33408798

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To: Terry Maloney who wrote (435904)7/23/2021 8:35:43 PM
From: Broken_Clock
   of 435945
 
"Right....

because nancy isn't a sold out manipulating thieving bitch"

are you claiming she isn't?

You left out:
"Only Trump haters will be allowed on the commission." - Nancy

It's true. The only R on the commission when that was posted is the Neo-con Cheney.

"Nancy's just jealous Trump wouldn't give her his Nathan's Best and went for the hot young stuff....which is likely what her hubby is out doing as we write."

would you sleep with nancy?


Now, are you or are you not supportive of giving unproven "vaccines" to children under 18?


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From: Broken_Clock7/24/2021 12:58:27 PM
   of 435945
 
whether it's poor young Muslims or ignorant "white trash", the FBI is there to orchestrate the next "Plot" against the "Homeland" aka Motherland, Fatherland etc.

greenwald.substack.com

Indeed, the FBI has previously acknowledged that its own powers and budget depend on keeping Americans in fear of such attacks. Former FBI Assistant Director Thomas Fuentes, in a documentary called “The Newberg Sting” about a 2009 FBI arrest of four men on terrorism charges, uttered this extremely candid admission:

If you’re submitting budget proposals for a law enforcement agency, for an intelligence agency, you’re not going to submit the proposal that “We won the war on terror and everything’s great,” cuz the first thing that’s gonna happen is your budget’s gonna be cut in half. You know, it’s my opposite of Jesse Jackson’s ‘Keep Hope Alive’—it’s ‘Keep Fear Alive.’ Keep it alive.


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To: Terry Maloney who wrote (435904)7/26/2021 12:53:26 PM
From: Broken_Clock
1 Recommendation   of 435945
 
I have lots of "clown" friends


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From: Broken_Clock8/9/2021 10:42:41 PM
1 Recommendation   of 435945
 
JHK lives on!


Clusterfuck Nation – Blog August 2, 2021
When Things Don’t Add Up

Clusterfuck Nation
For your reading pleasure Mondays and Fridays

Support this blog by visiting Jim’s Patreon Page

And thanks to all my Patrons for your support

It was only a week ago that the American Medical Association (AMA) declared that the category formerly known as “sex” must be removed from US birth certificates — replaced, one supposes, by a tacit “to-be-determined” status in the great Progressive rush to extract the human race from the animal kingdom. Of course, that’s only one skirmish in the great Woke Jacobin war on the moiling masses who clutter up planet Earth, cramping the style of its transhuman-seeking ubermanagers, Bill Gates, Bezos, Daszak, Zuck, Jack, Elon, Klaus & Company, et al.

But this was the old redoubtable, white-coated AMA, you understand, not some claque of screeching, size-16, “body-positive,” gender-cryptic freshman hopping up and down outside the Yale faculty lounge to gurn at the sherry-sipping toffs within. Amateur diagnosticians out there might recognize it as another symptom of the hebephrenic toxicosis infecting America’s elites, especially those who work in realms supposedly based on facts, figures, and the general effort to make sense of life in our mysterious universe.

This national freak-show-of-the-mind might account for the many recent instances of science talking out of its booty-hole, led by its very personification, Dr. Anthony (“The Science”) Fauci, proud papa of SARS-CoV-2 (stage-name: Covid-19), with all its fabulous HIV and monkeypox gain-of-function bells and whistles. Dr. Fauci’s mighty, 20-year effort to bring forth this gift to mankind happens to coincide neatly with the collapse of advanced techno-industrial economies, a frightful condition that was already causing enough trouble in the world before Covid-19 marched in. Some suspect that Covid-19 is a contrived cover for all that, perhaps even an attempt to manage the journey down.

The Covid 19 panic, which has been driving formerly civilized societies crazy for eighteen months, prompted the bringing-forth of The Science’s follow-up project: vaccines to stop the spread of the virus. Enter the scene, these vaxes did, like, a day-and-a-half after Covid-19 pirouetted onstage. Hmmmm. Could someone have been working on those vaxes backstage before the dread virus even premiered? Were patents issued for them pre-dating January, 2020? Seems so. But never mind that for now. The vaxes were rolled out to fanfares over a year ago and those moiling masses of America, the superfluous holders of bachelor’s degrees in Oppression Studies — for whom, sadly, the world had run-out of paying positions — lined up like kids at Santa’s throne in Macy’s on Black Sunday for their Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson jabs. Whew…! That was a close call!

Or was it? Naw, not even close, actually. Since now it turns out that the jabs don’t seem to work that well. The official story got murkier last week when the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported internally to staff (it leaked) that “fully vaccinated people might spread the Delta variant at the same rate as unvaccinated people.” Whoopsie…. In a Delta variant outbreak on Cape Cod last month, three-quarters of the infected were fully vaxed-up patients. The story got darker because The New York Times, the usually-reliable mouthpiece for The Science and his allies in “Joe Biden’s” public health bureaucracy, let slip that, “The Delta variant is as contagious as chickenpox and may be spread by vaccinated people as easily as the unvaccinated.”

Wuh-oh…! A worm the size of an Amtrak Acela train has turned in the myocarditic heart of our nation’s capital. Things have changed overnight — didn’t they see it coming? — and now the government is freaking out as it appears to have some serious ‘splainin’ to do — and right on the heels, too, of an hysterical month-long campaign to persuade the remaining unvaxed millions to submit to the needle, climaxed by threatening the obdurate “hesitants” with taking away their employment and ability to participate in commerce and social life. All that sound-and-fury for what? For vaccines that don’t work… and which, quite possibly, could leave you seriously ill, even dead?

There’s one beguiling explanation I’ve heard — from Brandon Smith of Alt-Markets.us, and others — for that hysterical campaign of recent days to jab every last hold-out: the need to eliminate what’s called the “control group,” the bunch of people who, in any drug trial, are given no drug, or a fake shot (like saline), or a placebo (mindfuck agent) to see if the real thing actually works. The desperate effort couldn’t have been more idiotic, since there was no realistic hope of gulling the remaining unvaxed into getting a shot, and the effort only made the “Joe Biden” admin look even more dishonest and despotic.

This could be the beginning of the end for POTUS 46 and the Woke-Jacobin derangement he stole in on. The CDC numbers look so bad now, that Ol’ White “Joe” himself will have to step up to the mic and say something like: “We made a mistake with these vaccines. I hope you will forgive us.” Of course, he absolutely won’t rise to the occasion and say that, no way… and, anyway, the government (and POTUS 46) will not be forgiven because they’ve destroyed millions of livelihoods and tens of thousands of going businesses, and allowed a bunch of cities to get burned and trashed, and city-dwellers to be harassed and attacked by their Antifa/ BLM shock troops, and enabled roughly half the US population not-insane to be terrorized, mau-maued, and insulted by every Woke jape from the Drag Queen Reading Hour to Nancy Pelosi’s January 6 “insurrection” circus — with the janky 2020 election right in the middle.

Speaking of which election, evidence is likely to emerge soon that the numbers really don’t add up. And in a big way. The max-vax campaign may have been an attempted smoke screen for all that trouble coming down the line, but the max-vax move is obviously flopping now. And, by the way, do you suppose that the not-insane half of the nation has failed to notice that upward of half-a million people from other lands (all over the world!), many carrying Covid-19, have been jumping our border with Mexico… and that the US government has deliberately assisted them… and distributed them by bus, and even on airplanes, to distant points all over the USA… and now these government rogues have the nerve to put the squeeze on American citizens to vax up against a virus they are seeding around the country! Is it really too much to declare that this regime has got to go, and go as soon as possible?

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