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  • Brown Shirts

    Posted by Ginny on September 15th, 2012 (All posts by )

    Reynolds’ tone is usually light, a bit ironic; this entry has trouble reaching that objectivity – but I assume someone whose day job is explicating the Constitution (or who knows history) may have trouble achieving distance. Hell, I teach a couple of the Federalist Papers and do. Of course, spending the summer acccidentally watching a lot of WWII propaganda movies hasn’t helped. (Last night was The White Cliffs of Dover.) Or maybe it has. History repeats and repeats – and it only takes a generation or two to educate Airheads who don’t know the history of their grandparents, let alone any farther back.

    Anyway, if we re-elect this guy, we have proven that we don’t know our history, we don’t know history, and we don’t know ourselves. That is clearly true of the execrable journalists. The Boomers are getting old; we remain divided. But do any of us think that this is the way a great country acts? Do any of us think the obsession not with what Romney said nor with what Obama did and did not say but rather with the gotcha questions appropriately represented this country’s values?

    (I don’t know what the “Just Unbelievable” category is really supposed to be – if it doesn’t fit, Jonathan, change it and take out this line. On the other hand, what better sums it up? Don’t talk to me about Japanese internment. I don’t want to defend it, but I can – that was human nature. This is the nature of a police state.)
    Steyn Barone

     

    94 Responses to “Brown Shirts”

    1. Jonathan Says:

      Alas, “just unbelievable” fits exactly.

    2. Sgt, Mom Says:

      I am mad enough to spit nails over this – our media, political and military elite caving in, when it comes to the First Amendment? So, all those pious lectures about freedom of speech and freedom of thought have to take a back-seat if it means offending the Muzzies and their precious prophet?
      Interesting that all the officers around the apprehended gentleman are in tan-colored shirts. I guess that’s just a couple of shades off from brown.

    3. The Sanity Inspector Says:

      This is no longer proggy self-censorship in the face of angry Third World mobs. This is the government actively enforcing sharia blasphemy laws in gee-dee blinker-blankin’ California!

    4. David Foster Says:

      For two decades now, universities have been imposing “speech codes” which restrict the intellectual freedom of their students. It was inevitable that this attitude would seep out into the wider society, and now it has happened.

      If an individual spends 4 or 6 or 8 years in an environment where conformity of opinion is required, then actions to suppress dissenting views will not trigger the kind of negative reaction that one would normally have expected in America.

    5. Geek, Esq. Says:

      The guy violated his probation (federal fraud conviction). That has consequences.

      But, I guess holding a felon accountable for the terms of his probation means the end of the Republic or something.

      By all means goad Mitt Romney into demanding that this guy not be punished for violating his probation.

    6. Joe Citizen Says:

      With each passing day, the meltdown of the “conservative” mind reaches ever more unbelievable depths. Reynolds has been slowly sliding into lunacy for some time now, but I guess he retains enough credibility to drag down many others who have, until now, tried to cling to some measure of stability.

      Are y’all trying to scare us with the vision that if Obama is reelected we will lose the rightward 20% of our population in some spasm of spontaneous combustion?

      Do you think we would really mind?

    7. Bill Brandt Says:

      Some of the most fanatical German soldiers towards the close of WW2 (last 2 months or so) were the children – armed with the Panzerfauste – anti tank bazookas – GIs had to kill them in droves – they grew up with Hitler

    8. John Deerborn Says:

      “Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, a Coptic Christian, was voluntarily interviewed by federal probation officers at a sheriff’s station in the Los Angeles suburb of Cerritos and left about 30 minutes later” [and he went voluntarily and wasn’t handcuffed]

      OMG — it’s fascism! Obama should resign for this terrible abuse of liberties! Conservatives NEVER support the police picking up somebody (like a former meth cook) and questioning him! They hate that! Except EVERY OTHER TIME IT HAS EVER HAPPENED.

    9. Angie Schultz Says:

      The guy violated his probation (federal fraud conviction). That has consequences.

      Oh, horseshit.

      People violate probation all the time — for far more serious crimes in far more serious ways — and the cops don’t bother unless they can’t avoid it. He would have violated his probation by posting lolcat pics, too. Do you imagine for one minute that officers would have been sent to his door in the middle of the night for that?

    10. Jonathan Says:

      -If he violated his probation, why wasn’t he arrested?

      -What do you think would have happened if he had refused to go with the cops?

      -You geniuses do realize that some of the contributors to this blog, including the admin, don’t think meth cooks should be prosecuted at all, don’t you?

      -Does the fact that this guy is in the news only because a federal official leaked his name bother you just a little bit?

      -Why do you smart fellows think he is covering his face?

      Let’s have some serious responses now.

    11. Scotus Says:

      To Geek, Esq.; Joe Citizen; John Deerborn; and all the other up-BO’s-a_s-trolls out there: To quote Bill Clinton, “Give me a break.” Snarky comments do not rebut visual truth. BTW, in celebration of free speech, I hope you will continue to display your idiocy/madness.

      Ginny says if we reelect BO we don’t know our history. At this point, a review of the Alien and Sedetion Acts is in order. BTW, the Alien Enemies Act is still on the books. Perhaps BO will use it to deport Nakoula to Egypt and his death, since BO is not sure whether Egypt is an ally or an enemy.

    12. Jim Miller Says:

      Glenn Reynolds is a libertarian, not a conservative, as he tells everyone from time to time.

      (An attentive reader could figure that out rather quickly from reading his posts. But the reader would have to think about what Reynolds had written.)

    13. Geek, Esq. Says:

      So, an arrest that didn’t happen that Obama had nothing to do with (probation violators are part of judicial branch’s jurisdiction, not DOJ) is proof Obama is a dictator.

      To repeat: y’all are demanding a Presidential resignation because a felon was voluntarily interviewed after violating his probation but never taken into custody.

      Man, the Bush Derangement Syndrome on the left was never this bad. Reynolds mooches off the state dime to share this kind of paranoia?

    14. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Geekhead, How exactly did he violate his probation ? By saying something as stupid as you do ?

      Those who do not know history are condemned to live stupid lives, as long as the state allows anyway.

    15. Geek, Esq. Says:

      He’s not allowed to access the Internet, use a computer, or use false aliases. So, when he used a false name to upload this to YouTube, that’s multiple violations.

      And, of course, the ODS’ers like Reynolds fail to note that the federal probaction service IS NOT PART OF THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH.

    16. Thers Says:

      I love this site! Nobody here has any clue how comical you are.

      “Don’t talk to me about Japanese internment. I don’t want to defend it, but I can – that was human nature.”

      Shazam!

    17. T.K. Tortch Says:

      Geek. Dear. If the spectacle of what happened to Nakoula doesn’t look a bit sketchy to you in the wake of events and the Administration & various Executive Branch statements, then you really ought to hand in your “critic of power” decoder ring.

      I hope that “Esq.” doesn’t mean you’re a lawyer, not after posting that he was “voluntarily interviewed after violating his probation but never taken into custody”. Heh!! So trusting, you, of the Man. Any criminal defendant you might have represented was cooked.

      And, having practiced a lot of criminal defense law, I’m absolutely thrilled with the relish shown in the available justification of a probation violation as an excuse. Not that it’s necessarily a very good one. But if you’re eager to swallow the McGuffin, choke it down, by all means.

    18. Scotus Says:

      Yes, the up-BO’s-a_s trolls are VERY funny. Please continue with your hilarious idiocy/madness. I suppose this week it’s the Chicagoboyz turn for you to visit and spread your sunshine. Thanks so very much for your kind consideration.

    19. Ginny Says:

      So, this action is not likely to influence others’ actions, has no relation to the riots across the Middle East? Much as the riots have no relation to 9/11? And “hurt feelings” – the very words send a shiver – of the “other” should be a government’s consideration in categorizing (and dealing with) speech. These positions would appear parodies.

    20. David Foster Says:

      The “it was just because he was violating probation” argument and the “probation service is not part of the executive branch” arguments ignore the fact that (a)the police action against this individual was only part of the disrespect for free speech demonstrated by the Administration in this and related cases, including the original embassy tweet and the admin request to Google to suppress the video and the phone call to another filmmaker by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and (b)the fact that the positions taken by a powerful figure in an organization can have a strong influence on people in that organization, even those who are not under his direct authority.

    21. Percy Dovetonsils Says:

      I do hope the Catholics and Southern Baptists are paying attention. Apparently religiously-inspired group violence is government protected now.

    22. Percy Dovetonsils Says:

      Any word from the ACLU on this? Any?

    23. DocAmazing Says:

      Apparently religiously-inspired group violence is government protected now.

      Previously religiously-inspired group violence had to rely on the private sector: cf Rudolph, Eric; also Operation Rescue

    24. Geek, Esq. Says:

      Yeah, how dare people point pit stuff like facts and law. I mean OBAMA IS TEH HITLER!!!

      To those who don’t appreciate the significance of FPS being in the judicial branch–it means they don’t answer to Barack Obama. Their ultimate boss is John Roberts.

      Rick Santorum really nailed it yesterday.

    25. Sgt, Mom Says:

      Goodie, we have more chew-toys … Pengun was getting kind of stale and predictable.

    26. Scotus Says:

      Oh, really, Geek, Esq, wounded outrage is boring. Can’t you at least muster up some clever sarcasm?

    27. Joe Citizen Says:

      “…the disrespect for free speech demonstrated by the Administration in this and related cases, including the original embassy tweet and the admin request to Google to suppress the video and the phone call to another filmmaker by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs,”

      Wow. You really have no clue what the First Amendment is all about do you? Here is a hint: it does not say “…the President shall express no opinion on any matter that in any way refers to the speech of any citizen”.

      The Amendment precludes the Congress from passing any law restricting the right of free speech. Since there was absolutely nothing in the original embassy tweet that could possibly be interpreted as an attempt by the Government to forcibly repress free speech, and since the administration REQUEST to Google came with absolutely no compulsion or attempt at compulsion (witness the fact that Google refused, and they still enjoy their freedom and prosperity – and that these types of requests happen all the time), and since the phone call by the Chairman also constituted a polite request with no compulsion….given all that, you ain’t got nothin’.

      “…the fact that the positions taken by a powerful figure in an organization can have a strong influence on people in that organization”

      First off, neither the embassy tweet, nor the request to Google, nor the phone call to Mr. Jones, nor the questioning of the filmmaker represented a statement by a powerful figure (I assume you mean Obama) to other people in his organization.

      Further, I find it hard to conclude otherwise than that your standard here would prevent the President, any President from ever saying anything critical of any citizen.

      its yet more derangement syndrome. Take a step back and try to connect with some principles that you would be willing to apply to some future President – one who might be far closer to your own ideal.

    28. Tim Says:

      Geek,

      Isn’t a false alias his real name?

    29. David Foster Says:

      Joe Citizen: In 1934, a rally against Nazi persecution of Jews was planned for Madison Square Garden. The German government demanded that the Roosevelt administration do something to stop it, which of course that administration declined to do.

      Suppose that an administration official had telephoned the manager of Madison Square Garden and “requested” that the rally be cancelled. Would that have been okay, from a free speech standpoint, by your standards?

      You might say, of course, that the cases are not parallel since the film in question at present is (supposedly–I haven’t seen it) tacky and offensive, but the rally, presumably, was not.

      So change the historical situation. Imagine that the rally was not only a denunciation of Naziism, but of Germany and German culture in general….ie, Germans are beer-swilling buffoons, Goethe was really nothing more than a lackey of his Duke, Heine was a drunken opium-user, etc.

      In that situation, would there be anything repugnant to your ideas of free speech if a Roosevelt operative had tried to get the rally cancelled?

    30. Dan from Madison Says:

      Sgt. Mom – ha!

    31. T.K. Tortch Says:

      Joe C.:

      “Wow. You really have no clue what the First Amendment is all about do you? Here is a hint: it does not say “…the President shall express no opinion on any matter that in any way refers to the speech of any citizen”.”

      Oh great. Nice. Narrow the substance of the issue out of existence by creating a absurd exaggeration of what nobody here has actually said or.

      So let me exaggerate a little!!

      Sure, the First Amendment doesn’t say a president can’t mouth off about this or that video or this or that individual citizen of the United States and his or her unseemly exercise of free speech rights. So long as he doesn’t suggest a law infringing on their rights. So I guess we shouldn’t complain – or even worry!! – if a president, or say Sec. of State, or maybe Attorney General, singles out citizens and their speech that goes over the line and offends the wrong people. No problem. No risk of “chilling speech” when the Chief Executive of the most powerful and media saturated country in the world singles out individual citizens for their transgressive expressions. Browbeat away, Mr. President!!

      Sure. Technically it’s not out of line so nothing we’ve seen the last couple of days has any impact on the vigor and endurance of our speech rights.

      Oh and when this or that excitable portion of the world’s population gets bent out of shape by a Youtube video made by a U.S. Citizen and runs off burning stuff and killing people it’s okay to make sure everybody knows his name, where he lives, and how awful and wrong he is because he’s a criminal. And show that he’s so ashamed it made him turn himself in so he could be questioned about his awful wrongness. Which is appropriate when you abuse your speech rights.

      And it’s okay to ensure the the whole world sees him turning himself in so the whole world knows how awful, wrong and criminal he is. And though he voluntarily turned himself in, it’s okay that the spectacle looks like a full-press arrest dispatch with a squad of Deputies, or at the very least a perp walk. Because it’s okay for the World to believe that this is how we treat citizens who abuse their speech rights.

      Joe, I don’t care whether all these things were stage-managed or just bungled in sequence. Either way they do implicate speech rights. The First Amendment isn’t just a legal nicety, a technical quirk. Free speech rights are not something that are supposed to be tolerated by government, grudgingly, and no farther than the boundary of the text and as narrowly construed as possible. We ought to expect the posture and bias of government to orient towards maximum respect and consideration of speech rights, even where the content of the speech may be abhorrent. What we have just seen was the reverse.

      If you can’t see that I can’t do anything about it; if you think this is right wingnut fretting well I think you are too comfortable with state power. Heck I’m not even “right wing”. Look around; I’m sure you can find some left wingnut fretting about this, and for the same reasons, so you can safely ignore that too.

    32. Joe Citizen Says:

      “Would that have been okay, from a free speech standpoint, by your standards?”

      Sure. I would have disagreed with the request, since I would have supported the rally, but I assume you are asking a deeper question – one on the level of principles. There is nothing wrong with the administration expressing its opinion on such matters. If there is any hint of compulsion (not in the fevered mind of a conspiracy nut, but a real hint of real negative consequences), then I would stand with you in opposition.

      But to oppose the government when absolutely no compulsion is present or hinted at is to be utterly ridiculous. I do not believe for one second that you would hold an administration you supported to such a standard.

      “You might say, of course, that the cases are not parallel since the film in question at present is (supposedly–I haven’t seen it) tacky and offensive, but the rally, presumably, was not”

      No I wouldn’t say such a thing. These issues are not to be decided on the basis of aesthetics. Is that the only principles you imagine are relevant?

      “In that situation, would there be anything repugnant to your ideas of free speech if a Roosevelt operative had tried to get the rally cancelled?”

      If it had gone beyond a mere request – something fully respectful of the status of the government and the private actors in our political system. If they had tried to actually coerce compliance.
      None of that happened here, not even a hint of it.

    33. Joe Citizen Says:

      TK writes,

      “No risk of “chilling speech” when the Chief Executive of the most powerful and media saturated country in the world singles out individual citizens for their transgressive expression”

      Is this your first few months watching the political world? Seriously.

      American elected officials, including Presidents, have been lambasting private citizens with whom they disagreed since approximately eighteen minutes after George Washington lowered his hand after being sworn in for his first term. That is what happens in a free society. There is contentious politic discourse on a constant basis.

      And no, I don’t think anyone should expect the Chief Executive, of all people, to abstain from the debate for fear of “chilling” other people’s speech. What kind of a world do you live in?

      “…it’s okay to make sure everybody knows his name, where he lives, and how awful and wrong he is because he’s a criminal.”

      If this is bothering you, you have a very very long list of people to criticize before you get to the President. It is the media, both left and right, who have tracked this guy down and exposed him to the world. And it is many people, from every place on the political spectrum, that have denounced him.

      ” We ought to expect the posture and bias of government to orient towards maximum respect and consideration of speech rights, even where the content of the speech may be abhorrent”

      Yes, I agree. Maximum respect and consideration for speech RIGHTS. I.e. do not even hint at using the government to in any way repress free speech.
      Nothing that has happened here has done so.

      I would disagree if your statement was meant to go further and to imply “maximum respect and consideration of speech CONTENT”. No. Elected officials have every right, and at times even a responsibility, to express their opinions, even if very negative, toward the CONTENT of certain speech. Just so long as they do not hint that the right of the person to say such things is in question.

      I think the administration has handled this balance just right.

    34. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Jonathan, I’d be curious if all these new friends of ours have the same IP address.

      “I find it hard to conclude otherwise than that your standard here would prevent the President”

      How about those guys in brown shirts holding the culprits arms as they “voluntarily” escort him to a squad car ? Is that expressing an opinion ?

    35. Jonathan Says:

      I think they are separate people. One or two of them may have commented here before. Whatever. They are welcome as long as they are civil. Of course they will have to deal with the horror of rational argument…

      BTW, earlier today I inadvertently deleted at least one legitimate comment, containing a URL, that was flagged incorrectly as spam. The commenter is welcome to post his comment again if he wants to.

    36. Geek, Esq. Says:

      Well, we’ve been exposed to the horror of irrational, deranged arguments courtesy of the Professor. Should someone from the right advance a non-crazy, actually rational argument as to why:

      the non-arrest of a felon for a blatant violation of his probation by officers of the federal court system who are not under the authority of the President–

      why this means Obama is a Nazi and should resign.

      the reality-based community will be all ears.

      Hatred and paranoia directed at the President are not evidence. They are emotions.

    37. Michael Kennedy Says:

      It’s always king of amusing to see the lefties come out of the woodwork to defend their champion. We should feel honord by the attention.

    38. Ginny Says:

      I don’t remember anyone saying Obama was a Nazi. Pressures to limit and even punish free speech are characteristic of both, of course.
      It is Obama’s spokespeople who are arguing that the sole motivating force for the deaths in the Middle East this week – including the rather horrific one of the Ambassador to Libya – was the film. Whoever thought a lot of cameras at a man’s house was the appropriate way to call attention to the creator of that film might be seen as endangering him. I’m not so willing to grant that the film was the only motivating factor, but that it was for some of the violence is certainly true. Endangering a citizen by such attention is likely to chill free speech – if not to permanently chill the man in the video.
      But that all thisi happens in the real world, the one with which Geek is apparently unacquainted.

    39. Sgt, Mom Says:

      They’re kind of sweet, actually – but if Glenn Reynolds is irrational and deranged by their standards, I guess they’ve never run across some of the real, hard-core uncompromising far-right sites. Hey, Geek, and Joe and all, if you really want to get your minds blown … check out Rantburg, or Ace of Spades, or even Jeff Goldstein!

      (heh, heh, heh … the regulars there will eat them alive.)

    40. Joe Citizen Says:

      “…but if Glenn Reynolds is irrational and deranged by their standards, I guess they’ve never run across some of the real, hard-core uncompromising far-right sites.”

      I don’t quite understand this. “Irrational” and “deranged” are far from the most extreme charges that one can lodge against someone.

      “… if you really want to get your minds blown …”

      I can assure you that we, like everyone else who is involved with the political blogosphere enough to be writing comments in places like this, are fully aware of the range of sites that are out there.

      “(heh, heh, heh … the regulars there will eat them alive.)”

      Once again this is quite odd. Do you consider these people to be your personal heroes or something? I have always found that “hard-core, uncompromising” extremists are the easiest people to deal with, and the least interesting.
      You sound as if you are almost proud that you have such morons on your side. So much for any affection for “rational argumentation”.

    41. Sgt, Mom Says:

      Now, Joe, it’s not odd at all – I just find it amusing that you are hanging around here … and are huffing and puffing about some of the most rational, reasonable, and rather erudite bloggers of the libertarian-fiscally conservative faction as if they are Teh Most Rabidest Far Rightest Crazy EVAH!!!

      It’s kind of innocently funny; and suggest to me that you really haven’t been out that much in this part of the the political blogosphere at all. But do stick around – it might be good for your development, or something.

    42. Joe Citizen Says:

      Wow mom, you have swung and missed on this one. I actually have spent almost all of my online life arguing with people on the right. I happen to have the personality type that gets really bored speaking with people I agree with, and am endlessly fascinated by how some of my fellow citizens can possibly believe the strange things that they do.

      I don’t think it fair to characterize anything I have said here as “huffing and puffing”, nor have I said anything about the people here being the craziest ever. Nor, by the way, have I shown any inclination to purposely misspell words for effect.

      I see you have a high opinion of yourself and your friends – and you may be right, given the constraints of your faction. I merely addressed the absurdity of Glenn Reynolds and his argument. In fact, I payed y’all a bit of a backhanded compliment by grousing about how Reynolds is dragging down other, more stable people, people who seem to feel obliged to defend him.

      Of course, you did more than just defend him. With your crack about brown shirts, you are going full Godwin on us. Nothing quite like the instant characterization of our local sheriffs as Nazis to demonstrate to the world your exquisite erudition and reasonableness.

    43. Michael Kennedy Says:

      “Nothing quite like the instant characterization of our local sheriffs as Nazis to demonstrate to the world your exquisite erudition and reasonableness.”

      Odd symbolism, though. The photo of Clinton’s care of Elian Gonzales is a better image, however.

      “I see you have a high opinion of yourself and your friends – and you may be right, given the constraints of your faction.”

      Trollish behavior is rarely welcome. Given that, I will leave you alone. Maybe you will get the hint.

    44. Jonathan Says:

      What’s oddest is how some people won’t acknowledge the obvious. Before the police visited this poor fellow in the middle of the night, 1) someone in the federal govt released his name to the media and 2) someone who either works for the federal govt, or who works for a state or local govt that takes its cues from the federal govt, used govt resources to investigate him and determined that he is on probation.

      Steve H. makes the point well:

      Here’s an important fact no one seems to be talking about: the federal government made a deliberate effort to determine Mr. Bacile’s name and look for leverage to persecute him. How do I know this? Common sense. In the beginning, no one knew who he was. In order for his identity to be determined, an investigation had to occur. That proves he was investigated deliberately. How do I know they looked for leverage? Again, common sense. When you learn a person’s name, you don’t automatically know the details of that person’s criminal record. Barack Obama has not memorized the names of all criminals in the United States. Someone in the government had to run a check on him. How do I know it was to gain leverage? Because there is no other explanation. If I do something to upset Barack Obama, but I do not commit a crime in the process, he will have no reason to check for a criminal record. If he does so, there has to be a reason. In the Bacile case, no reason other than leverage has come to light.
       
      What does it add up to? If you bother Barack Obama enough, he is going to have a government smear squad look you up, dig up dirt on you, expose you publicly, and make you sorry you were ever born. He will choose not to take steps to conceal you from people who want to murder you and your family. That is not just bad policy. That is EXTREME CORRUPTION. If it’s allowed to happen in the future, on an ongoing basis, it will be the end of free speech and freedom of religion.

    45. Michael Kennedy Says:

      “If you bother Barack Obama enough, he is going to have a government smear squad look you up, dig up dirt on you, expose you publicly, and make you sorry you were ever born.”

      Joe the Plumber learned that and Obama was just a candidate. There are fanatics on the left that will do anything to punish enemies as they perceive them. There are a few on the right but they are not tolerated. Bush punished the folks in the archives who checked to see if Clinton renounced his citizenship as a college student.

    46. Joe Citizen Says:

      Jonathan,

      You really think that is a “well-made point”?

      “How do I know this? Commmon sense.”

      I.e. I need not support this point because every reasonable person can see it – I know this because I asked myself.

      ” How do I know it was to gain leverage? Because there is no other explanation. ”

      I.e. I want to make a certain point, so this has to be the right interpretation.

      “If you bother Barack Obama enough…”

      I.e. Its all Obama, sitting in the Oval, coordinating multiple levels of investigation and police actions. I know this because it is common sense and there is no other explanation.

      Hey, I’m still looking for all that high-minded rational discussion I was promised here….

    47. Joe Citizen Says:

      “The photo of Clinton’s care of Elian Gonzales is a better image, however.”

      Interesting…so you were one of those who wanted to use the power of government to separate a child, who just lost his mother, from his, apparently decent and loving father because you disagreed with the father’s politics?

      And they tolerate you on a libertarian site???

    48. Joe Citizen Says:

      “Joe the Plumber learned that…”

      Ah yes, poor Joe. He really regrets he was born. Is he still down in Gitmo, or what?

      Of course it was the media that made Joe a household name, the conservative media no less. But don’t let facts get in your way…

    49. Sgt, Mom Says:

      Joe the Plumber, these days? Running for Congress, actually. Do try to keep up.

      http://www.joeforcongress2012.org/

    50. Geek, Esq. Says:

      Ah, yes, Jonathan reverts to a classic tactic–make stuff up out of whole cloth and treat assertion as evidence?

      Someone in the federal government revealed his location/identity?

      Actually, no.

      The AP tracked him down via investigative reporting:

      http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5ifWYKzUPaqJJsJ5aj-58K0JCL1Fg?docId=91c9d18979f24144ba8ea358237f046f

      But, he is right that the FPS did determine, after reading news reports that this guy used false names to raise funds over the Internet for this film, that he just might have violated the terms of probation forbidding him from doing that.

      The problem, once again, is that the wingnutosphere combined outright falsehoods with a complete lack of critical thinking, and threw in their emotional hysteria regarding the President, and convinced themselves that a guy meeting with his probation officer was proof that Obama was acting like a dictator, and smeared California law enforcement officers as Nazis to boot.

      This is all encouraging, because this kind of insanity does not flare up when people expect to withe election.

    51. Jonathan Says:

      http://news.yahoo.com/feds-id-california-mans-role-anti-islam-film-164554115.html

      Somebody in the govt had to have investigated him after he was publicly ID’d.

      Is that what govt officials should do — investigate people named in news stories, in order to learn if they have any outstanding warrants, or are violating probation, or have unpaid parking tickets? That’s a rhetorical question, BTW.

    52. Michael Kennedy Says:

      “The problem, once again, is that the wingnutosphere combined outright falsehoods with a complete lack of critical thinking,”

      Trolls always out themselves eventually. I don’t engage them and they eventually go away. It’s a bit like barking dogs. My dog doesn’t bark unless another dog barks at him.

    53. Jonathan Says:

      Interesting…so you were one of those who wanted to use the power of government to separate a child, who just lost his mother, from his, apparently decent and loving father because you disagreed with the father’s politics?

      Your mind works in interesting ways. He lost his mother because she drowned while escaping, probably with the father’s consent, from Cuba. The father’s “politics” were irrelevant, because as a captive serf of the Castro dictatorship it was inconceivable that he could freely express his opinions on any topic of interest to his rulers. The humane way to treat the kid would have been to respect his late mother’s wishes and allow him to stay in the USA.

    54. Joe Citizen Says:

      “Running for Congress, actually. Do try to keep up.”

      Thanks Mom. I guess I need to do the “/sarcasm” thing at the end of some of my comments…

    55. Joe Citizen Says:

      “The humane way to treat the kid would have been to respect his late mother’s wishes and allow him to stay in the USA.”

      No Jonathen, the humane thing to do was to return him to his father. I don’t think there is a more basic human value than that – or a more outrageous abuse of power by a tyrannical government, than to take a child away from its parent, unless, of course, that parent were some pervert or criminal.

      That you imagine you can substitute your opinion for this most basic human value speaks volumes about the type of person you are. How you can square your attitude with libertarian principles is beyond me.

      But perhaps I assume too much. I know this is a libertarian site, but maybe you are not one yourself. Well, obviously you are not one….

    56. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Jonathan, it’s hopeless. They don’t debate; they spout.

    57. Joe Citizen Says:

      C’mon Michael. If all you are going to do is make little speeches to the ether, why bother? Either engage in the conversation, or give it a rest.

      You raised the Elian issue. A bit of spouting,,,hardly much of an argument. So defend your position.

      I am seriously curious about how a libertarian type can justify using the power of government to take a child away from a decent and loving parent. And I ain’t the only one – the polling was about 2:1 agreeing with me at the time, and remains so.

      I fully understand why the Republican politicians in Florida took the contra position – obviously political pandering to their base. But how can anyone who may claim to act on principle support such tyranny?

      There is nothing more basic to our society than the relationship between a parent and their child. To assert that the government can intervene in this relationship and enforce a separation between the two, for political reasons is the greatest outrage imaginable.

    58. Michael Kennedy Says:

      I don’t encourage trolls.

    59. Joe Citizen Says:

      You may be a regular here Michael, but your behavior is far more trollish than mine. You make provocative assertions, then run away and hide. I am trying to seriously engage the issues that are raised here, offering my best thoughts on the matters. I am giving you arguments, and you just return insults and a refusal to engage.

      Whats up with this? You are going to seriously disappoint Mom, who is so sure that this site is an oasis of rationality and reasonableness. Be reasonable.

    60. Sgt, Mom Says:

      Ah – the gentle searching intellect and honest non-confrontational wisdom-seeking of Joe Citizen, Thers and Geek Esq:

      …Reynolds has been slowly sliding into lunacy …
      …Bush Derangement Syndrome on the left was never this bad. Reynolds mooches off the state dime to share this kind of paranoia…
      …its yet more derangement syndrome.
      … we’ve been exposed to the horror of irrational, deranged arguments courtesy of the Professor.

      Hatred and paranoia directed at the President are not evidence. They are emotions…

      With your crack about brown shirts, you are going full Godwin on us…

      We the people of the United States currently approve of the President’s performance (slightly), like the President considerably more that his opponent, and are, by a significant amount, inclined to reelect him, if the election were held today.

      … Jonathan reverts to a classic tactic–make stuff up out of whole cloth and treat assertion as evidence…

      And they tolerate you on a libertarian site???

      You sound as if you are almost proud that you have such morons on your side.

      Is this your first few months watching the political world? Seriously.

      I am giving you arguments, and you just return insults and a refusal to engage.

      Wow. You really have no clue what the First Amendment is all about do you?

      And so you finished todays Chicagoboyz comment entertainment segment by saying,“Whats up with this? You are going to seriously disappoint Mom, who is so sure that this site is an oasis of rationality and reasonableness. Be reasonable.”

      I would assign you to go read Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People, and polish up your skills on … er, how to win friends and influence people. You’re doing fine as your basic internet s**tstirrer, so you got that advantage going for you, but not being able to tell the diff between me and Ginny, is points against. Ta, now. Best luck in your future endeavors.

    61. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Celia, you are far more patient with these trolls than I am.

      “Of course it was the media that made Joe a household name, the conservative media no less. But don’t let facts get in your way…”

      Yes, those reasonable debates we are used to here. It was the “conservative media” that caused Joe to be playing football on his lawn with his son when Obama came by. It was the “conservative media” that looked up his court records and discovered he had tax debts.

      Yes, you are absolutely right. Now, will you leave us alone?

      You have proven that no circle of agreeable people is safe from an invasion of trolls on the internet. You might look at the archives of this site to see what you have slimed. Then you can leave and bother someone else. Or not and be ignored.

    62. T.K. Tortch Says:

      Tsk. Where is PenGun? That’s a troll who knows how it’s done.

      Anyway. Joe. You are comfortable with how the administration has handles this because you are comfortable with state power, and admire it, and desire it to increase (in you and yours hands) because you need it and desire it to model society Just So. And naturally you think you and yours are capable of safely wielding that ever increasing power.

      And blow me down!! There are historical examples of Executives mouthing off at citizens. You’re right within limits but you are also blowing smoke. Again, you are context-deaf. Power doesn’t offend you – not a critic; a connoisseur.

    63. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Eh, MK – it was a rainy Sunday afternoon, and they all afforded me some amusement … collecting up all their assorted insulting comments and then seeing them whine over how no one wanted to engage with their best thoughts. I guess that Sunday was Chicagoboyz Day for them. Wonder where they will show up next. They might be working through the Instapundit blogroll – if so, be fun to watch when they get to Rantburg!

    64. Joe Citizen Says:

      “I would assign you to go read Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People”

      Gee thanks again Mom.
      Maybe we could read it together.

      It was you, after all, who wrote – well before I chimed in – about the tan shirts. Referring to our law enforcement officers.
      And no, I did not mistake you for Ginny (although I accept your implication that she is guilty of Godwinism with her title). I was specifically referring to your first comment.

      You don’t think it lunacy to call for the President’s resignation over this filmmaker’s visit with the sheriff? Hey, check out Memorandum – the little Saturday buzz is long gone – not even the most extreme members of the GOP establishment have picked up on this idea? Why is that? What is your objection to calling it lunacy? Was it instead just a joke? Did I miss something?

      Do you seriously think that hatred of the President IS evidence? Are they not emotions? What is your objection here?

      Is not a mention of brownshirts a reference to Nazis? Is not the Godwinism thesis that “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1”?
      What is your objection here?

      The polls really really do show that the President’s approval rating is positive, that his favorables are much higher than Romney’s, and that he has a lead in the election – a very strong lead in the electoral college. Go check out RealClearPolitic’s polls of polls on this subject. Its a good Republican site.
      Granted these are polls of the real world….

      Using government power to break up a family – to keep a child away from his one surviving parent strikes me as both a profound outrage against human values and the worst possible violation of libertarian principles. But what do I know? So I ask – politely – how can Michael justify that? Can you answer?

      Yes, I called some bloggers morons. The same people who you called “hard-core and uncompromising”. I thought we had a semblance of an agreement there. What is your objection anyway?

      Anyway, this is getting tiring. I think I have tried harder than any of you to share a sense of why I think the things I do, and to ask y’all to explain in more detail your own opinions.

      Sorry to give you contrary feedback, but this site does not strike me as a place populated by people who are interested in rational discourse. Unless it is within the narrow confines of agreement on the underlying ideology. And that is no big deal – on any site on the web you can find people being polite, erudite, and reasonable when they talk to people they agree with. The challenge is with people who disagree, and on that score, y’all seem remarkably incapable of conversation.

    65. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Toodleoo, then. As you swan about the internet dispensing your wisdom, try not to trip over your preconceptions. If you want to have meaningful discussions with people whose opinions differ from yours, do you best to not be so insulting right off the bat. For a single day, you really have set a record.

    66. tyouth Says:

      President Obama said “That it’s important for you to make sure that the statements you make are backed up by the facts, and that you’ve thought through the ramifications before you make them.”

      He made this criticism of some one expressing an opinion (in film) BEFORE condemning the embassy attackers and he made it with about about equal vehemence.

      I suppose this was BEFORE the administration disavowed the embassy’s statement since Obama’s statement does seem to follow the same line of near-rationalization of the riot.

      Technically, and in this case, it is none of the POTUS’ business what is said by someone in this country. It shouldn’t have been recognized, IMO. In the heat of the moment the instincts, the real beliefs of this administration come through. While surely not an impeachable offense it is another brush stroke in the portrait of what appears to me to be a crypto-American trying to institute a Brave New America.

      I doubt Obama made any effort to detain or question the film maker but I wouldn’t put it past many people in, surrounding, or supporting his administration to have made an influential call or two.

      Joe, FWIW, I agree w you about Elian Gonzales.

    67. Joe Citizen Says:

      “You are comfortable with how the administration has handles this because you are comfortable with state power, and admire it, and desire it to increase”

      TK, You seem to be describing, in a very helpful manner, the type of opponent that you wish to argue against.
      Sorry, but I don’t recognize myself there.

      I know it can be annoying, but the world does not automatically generate opponents who hold the direct opposite positions from the one you espouse.

    68. Scotus Says:

      I’ve been busy all day; so, I haven’t had a chance to look in on this love fest until now. I’ve concluded there are four possibilities. To wit: Joe C. et al. are A.) Professional Left-Wing Trolls sent out to sow disheartenment and doubt. B.) Up-BO’s-a_s-True Believers who must rant to stave off their own disheartenment and doubt. C.) Leftie blowhards who must ventilate their moral flatuance at regular intervals D.) All of the above. My money is on D. The best I can say for them is what Dick Morris said of Bill Clinton’s Dem convention speech — good (fair) lawyers defending a client they know is guilty.

      Of course, their real problems is they, like the Pharisees of old, are “blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.” (Mt. 23:24) (Got to love Jesus’ rabinic imagery!) They simply refuse to connect the dots, for they are not dumb enough to be unable to do so. Have BO or his minions done anything (yet) that, technically, violates the First Amendment? Maybe not. Is what happened to Nakoula part of a clear pattern (suing Gallup, raiding Gibson Guitars, endorsing anti-blasphamy resolutions at the UN, the Cairo embassy tweet, limiting freedom of religion to freedom of worship, for everyone, of course, but Muslims) of trying to intimidate and silence those who disagree with them or whom they otherwise find inconvenient? For those who answer “no,” refer to options A-D inclusive.

      Ah well, I shall pray for Joe C. and his co-religionists, thankful, that, when the holy one of their faith (BO) is rightly lampooned, all they do, at lest for now, is fire off their big mouths, not their big guns. Finally, a friendly warning: Those who suffer others to pay the danegeld today will themselves pay it tomorrow, for it’s the gnat strainers who will be the first ones up against the wall, if, God forbid, we ever do lose the First Amendment.

    69. Joe Citizen Says:

      Well Scotus, a hearty good evening to you too.

      I guess this is just more of that rational argumentation and civility stuff. But fear not, Mom has a book that might help you reengage the world in a more constructive manner.

    70. Scotus Says:

      Joe C.:

      As I said to Geek, Esq, “Oh really, wounded outrage is boring. Can’t you at least muster up some CLEVER sarcasm?” Please pardon me for opining that your conception of both civility and rationality is about one milimeter deep. Go ahead, Joe, and have the last word, for this comment covers anything else you might say.

    71. Marty Says:

      Let’s contemplate, for a second, why all those reporters were there–one good image of this guy’s face and he’s a dead man.

    72. Dan from Madison Says:

      I wish I had time for this love fest as well but this sentence up in the thread a bit by Joe Citizen directed at Sgt. Mom was, I thought, extremely odd:

      “I see you have a high opinion of yourself and your friends – and you may be right, given the constraints of your faction.”

      Faction? Well then!

    73. Mike Doughty Says:

      This is all Chicago politics writ large…..nothing more (and nothing less). No surprises.

    74. Joe Citizen Says:

      Dan from Madison,

      Hi Dan. I guess you missed this comment from Mom – the one immediately preceding my comment, and the one I was responding to.

      She wrote (about my characterization of some of y’all) that I was criticizing “..some of the most rational, reasonable, and rather erudite bloggers of the libertarian-fiscally conservative faction as if they are…”.

      So you see, she is the one that characterized a “faction” – I was merely using her language to make clear that we were talking about the same group.

    75. Death 6 Says:

      I guess I have to say that a little passion in defense of the first amendment and suspicion of government power is rational given the pattern of events noted by Scotus. That should be sufficient to condemn the California scene that was videoed and broadcast to the world, especially the middle eastern world. Obama and the progressive left in control of the executive branch, the senate and a goodly part of the judicary don’t have to direct such incidents, they only have to incentivize them. Plausable deniability can be maintained so long as the incentives before, during and after are consistent. It may be more or less direct direction, but either way it amounts to the same thing. Impeach Obama? No, how about we fire him. Your poll references are suspect. Try Rasmussen (who is not only scientific, but has the right model parameters) and conclude he has any sort of substantial lead in the electoral college. There is no invention or desperation in the interpretation of these events. The causal operative factors (disengagement, weakening of will, lack of appropriate diplomatic facility and personel security, endorsement of Islamic hypersensibilities) and the subsequent reaction by Obama (personal disengagement, endorsement of Islamic hypersensbilities, fund raising focus, tepid condemnation of the violence, mild security increases) certainly place his reelection in further doubt.

      Is there a pattern here? Don’t want to surrender the relevant documents for public examination if you concealed and lied about the details of government promoted gun running that killed innocents on both sides of the border- contempt of what? Who will prosecute that? Don’t like the Hatch Act, no problem- no punishment. Into Panther voter intimidation, no problem- DOJ will drop the charges. Want to make a political statement by staging a dramatic midnight “voluntary” parole “questioning” custody meet and greet in front of the assembled media for a citizen who is likely under a death sentence from radical fanatics- go for it- John Roberts won’t stop you or fire you as he is too busy redefining two years of legal precedent to convert a fine/penalty into a tax for failure to act IAW the gold standard of progressive power overreach and divining other ways to extend government control (sorry, nudging) of individual choice. Like to use your military position as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to pressure citizens to use their first amendment freedom IAW your desires- Paneta is not going insist that generals stay out of the constitutional fray, apolitical what? The Chairman calls a citizen to advise him what he can or can not say? No intimidation intended, that.

      Yeah, it is irrational to view these events as any sort of pattern of centralization of power and limiting in any way individual freedom. Read Obama’s book (critically rather than admiringly), look for consistent patterns between what he and the progressives say and do and their tactics. That is very rational in a world of imperfect knowledge and a concerted effort to conceal illegal and immoral means as a general principle of action. Wink, wink, snooze- nothing happening here, move along, Monday night football, “I love you back!”, “We had a bad day.”
      Was that politically or national security wise?

      Mike

    76. Dan from Madison Says:

      Joe – it is an odd sentence (sorry you don’t understand that) and shows how you have absolutely no idea about the character/makeup of this group of bloggers or our standard group of intelligent commenters. But welcome anyway. Stick around – you may learn something.

    77. Joe Citizen Says:

      Dan,

      Could you clarify your last comment? I really don’t get your point.

      Mom characterized the people on this blog as a “faction”. I wished to make some reference to that same group, so I used the same word she did, so she would realize precisely to whom I was referring.

      If you have a problem with the word, take it up with her…

    78. Joe Citizen Says:

      “Your poll references are suspect. Try Rasmussen”

      Death,

      Oh c’mon. Ras has a very well known 5-6% GOP bias. Nobody takes them seriously as an objective polling firm. They are the house pollsters for the conservative movement.

      Hey, you guys are free-market fans. What about Intrade? My, my, yes – y’all even run an Intrade widget in your left sidebar. What does the free market of people who put down their own money behind their opinions have to say about who is likely to win this election? 66% for Obama….

    79. TMLutas Says:

      Joe Citizen – Are you really trash talking election chances in a post talking about the descent of fascism? Really?

      I’ve largely stayed out of this one because if in 2012 you’re this ignorant of what the arab world is like, there is little hope for you to catch up in one thread. There is also little hope that the ignorance is benign even though it is often tactically useful to give the benefit of the doubt on that.

      We are still within Richard Fernandez’ golden hour, the one he first wrote about in his Three Conjectures post way back in the day and which he later turned into a book. What is still on the table is the elimination of all irrational actors who attain nukes and the reality where technical sophistication worldwide is growing while the complexity of making nuclear weapons remains the same. For those of us who care more about what this planet would be like in such a geostrategic world rather than in the latest intrade numbers, this incident looks rather alarming. It looks like the sort of thing that will make the arab radicals overplay their hand to devastating consequences and not necessarily from the US.

      But those sorts of discussions are for the adults. You know the guys who aren’t pretending that this was a spontaneous demonstration that has to do with the film this fellow made and posted back in June.

    80. Joe Citizen Says:

      Well TM, you needn’t be rude about it. We ended up talking about Intrade numbers because that is the direction that a long thread took. Thats what happens when people converse, one thought leads to another, and it can end up going all sorts of directions.

      The original idea behind this thread was not so much about the arab world or nuclear weapons or anything like that. The thread was about Glenn Reynolds rather foolish post about how Obama should resign because some local sheriff in California had a conversation with a filmmaker. Or did you miss that? Did you ever actually read Ginny’s post?

      So you want to talk about something else. Fine. You needn’t start off by insulting people or attributing malign intent to the fact that I simply responded to the actual post here, and to other commenters rather than guessing what the really serious people, like you, thought should be under discussion.

      You call me ignorant of the middle east – why exactly? Have I said something in this thread that led you to that conclusion? I seem to recall discussing the foolishness of Reynold’s post, the meaning of the First Amendment, the propriety of the President being critical of a citizen, Joe the Plumber, Elain Gonzales,and Intrade numbers. And probably some other trivialities as well. But not a word about nukes or the Arab world.

      So maybe you would like to start over TM? Set aside the instinct to find someone, like me, to use as a strawman, and just make an intelligent and insightful comment, and help to bring out the adult in all of us.

    81. Jonathan Says:

      Why are you assholes so rude to me? Let’s discuss this reasonably. But first answer these five off-topic questions to my satisfaction. If you aren’t willing to do that it proves you’re closed-minded and not intellectually serious. If you were arguing in good faith you would accept my opinions as facts.

    82. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Oh, snap!

    83. Joe Citizen Says:

      Jonathan.

      ????
      Did I ask TM to answer ANY off-topic questions?
      What on earth are you talking about?

    84. Joe Citizen Says:

      And when have I ever called anyone an asshole here?

      Really my friend, get a grip. You want to go to war against some caricature of a “librul”, well have at it, but kindly leave me out of it. I’ll provide you with my own brand of entertainment, thank you very much.

    85. Death 6 Says:

      Not “66% for Obama…”, 66% betting Obama will win. There are actually interesting discussions on this site that include Intrade numbers and factors that influence these and gambling odds as well as limit the conclusions that can be drawn from either of these as well as from polls. Start with “Why is the [this] election so close?” Something like that.

      Rasmussen has an actual track record of being much closer to predicting past election margins than any other easily accessed polling service, including Gallop. 2008 is the exception as the historical participation rates were hopefully (from my point of view) singular. Rasmussen actually has to be accurate to get paid. In order to do that he polls likely not registered voters and factors results with openly disclosed weighting for things like voter identification and ethnicity. Almost all the other polls use highly questionable sampling techniques, weighting factors based on democratically favorable assumptions that are never, except 2008, realized. These polls are conducted or commissioned primarily by news services that are more interested in news buzz than accuracy. Given that 90% of mainstream and cable newscasrters admit to being Democrats, I can see why such systemic bias is widespread and continuing. Taking an average of mostly democrat over-sampled polls yields a skewed average. Not a very surprising result. The issue is accuracy, not politics. I sincerely doubt Scott Rasmussen is a conservative, but even if he were, his polling seems more accurate than the competition.

      Intrade was on for Scott Walker but predicts no margin. The polls, except for Rasmussen, were proponderently way off on the margin as well as indeterminent on which way it would go, about your 6 points off as you claim is the Rasmussen bias. This holds for 2004 (Kerry would win. Really? How did Real Clear do for these two recent examples?) as well. How did Reagan stack up against Carter at this point in the cycle in the traditional or media sponsored polls including Gallop. Rasmussen was remarkably accurate in showing the Republican primary results this cycle. No one who is a conservative would consider Romney the conservative choice in that field. He only appears the conservative choice compared to Obama. So would Clinton.

      Mike

    86. TMLutas Says:

      Joe Citizen – I am being far more polite and civil than the facts warrant. Count yourself lucky and move on. You have shown little awareness of how offensive you come off.

      The local sheriff did not have a conversation with a federal parolee. The local sheriff in a bankrupt state who had outspoken testimony regarding muslim radicalization before the House Homeland Security committee went and paid several of his officers overtime to collect a non-violent federal parolee who is at serious risk for assassination for a midnight conversation after somebody tipped off the media. The fellows asking questions supposedly are under the direction of a Clinton appointee to the bench, Chief Judge Audrey B Collins though I understand he was also questioned by the FBI in the session. And the Obama cheer section supposes that this is all SOP and not coordinated by the Executive.

      Right.

      And still nobody knows who this fellow’s parole officer is or whether he’d given permission for him to take the actions that are supposedly in question. Nobody even seems to have bothered to get a “no comment”. That would run counter to the narrative. And what a narrative it is. We’re placating an arab muslim mob and announcing that certain speech is subject to special scrutiny by the government. This is beyond incompetence. This is Uriah the Hittite territory.

    87. Joe Citizen Says:

      TM

      It is never polite to presume to tell people what they can and cannot say. I will go with the assumption that you simply have no awareness of how insulting and condescending you sound. Nonetheless, you will not succeed in provoking me to actually articulate that which I asked you to imagine.

      If you want to try again later with me, then try a different approach.

    88. Scotus Says:

      I have refused to engage Joe C.’s “arguments,” not only because he doesn’t have any, but because it just gives him a chance to spin, distort, distract, and outright lie. My opinion of him and his ilk has been made abundantly clear in my previous comments. My money is still on Option D, but, I must say, Joe C. is relentless with the Option A aspect of things. When even Jonathan resorts (with total justification) to sarcasm, the time for useful discussion has long since passed. I suggest we let Joe C. fulfill his juvenile need to have the last word and then depart in silence, shaking our heads, resolving to work, hope and pray for better days, and leaving Joe C. alone to strain his gnats and swallow his camel (with a Kool-aid chaser).

      P. S.: Given how this thread started, isn’t it great to live in a country in which, at least for now, Joe C. et al. are free to make themselves pains in the a_s.

    89. Joe Citizen Says:

      TM,

      Please accept my apologies for my last post. It was not meant for you and referred to an exchange with someone else.

    90. Joe Citizen Says:

      So, to your actual comment TM.

      Suddenly this is not about nuclear weapons all of a sudden? You came barging into this conversation in a rude and insulting manner, complaining about how unserious the discussion was because we were ignoring the great clash of civilizations or whatever, and now you take us back to whether or not this sheriff speaking to the filmmaker is an outrage or not?

      Earth to TM. Yeah, the cops pick up people for questioning all the time. Maybe the folks you hang out with don’t complain about that very much, since it doesn’t happen to them personally, but yeah – this is nothing unusual about this.

      So what happened to the guy? Was he sent to Gitmo?

      What on earth does the bankruptcy-status of California have to do with anything?

    91. Joe Citizen Says:

      And one last thing TM.

      Instead of just ranting against the government, why not try to extend yourself just a tad and seriously contemplate what you would do if you were actually someone with responsibilities.

      One day you wake up and there are widespread violent demonstrations against your country, and one of your ambassadors is murdered. How do you react? First thing – what the f is going on. Why are these people rioting? Oh, they say it is some film? What film? Who made it? What the hell is going on?

      Was it perhaps some al-Q plant pretending to be an American and trying to provoke an anti-American spasm? Oh its some Copt? Who is he – is there something larger going on? How are you going to answer these questions unless you investigate?

      How on earth can you criticize the government for investigating the situation? And yeah, that might mean taking someone in for a few hours.

      I asked you – what happened to the guy. I didn’t mean to be snarky. It is right to the point. Was he tortured? Waterboarded? Disappeared? Is this some great tyranny? Really?

      Or is it the basic things a government does to investigate the larger story around why one of our ambassadors ended up dead?

      You would not have done this if you had the responsibility?

    92. TMLutas Says:

      Joe Citizen – Apology accepted for past acts.

      No, it’s not about nuclear weapons all of a sudden. It’s been about them for the past decade or so since the first strategic thinker’s penny dropped and realized that the nightmare of non-state sponsored terror without limit and not under tight control could lead to a nuclear event and that all those previous theoretical conversations about it were no longer theoretical. The hypothesis was tested, found robust as a larger and larger group tried to defeat that idea and found, to their horror, that they couldn’t. That’s the lens that some of us adopt for all of it, Iraq, Iran, KSA, AQ, AfPak, the closing of the gates of ijtihad, muslim reformation, dhimmitude, and muslim millennialism in both Sunni and Shia variants. For years, long before this guy ever thought of making a movie that’s all its been about because we don’t want massive nuclear strikes and the worlds biggest genocide to happen even if we perhaps do not even like Islam. What it would do to the perpetrators is probably the least bad group outcome and that one’s bad enough to make a career out of avoiding as much of this decision tree as possible. It’s ugly, horrifying, and soul destroying for the *winners*. For everybody else, the outcomes just get worse.

      This particular sad little scenario with the film is all about dhimmitude and President Obama’s bid to negotiate a dhimmi agreement with a muslim mob that is incapable of honoring it as much as Obama’s incapable of honoring it. Negotiating a dhimmi agreement is necessarily a high crime against the Constitution because the two are fundamentally incompatible. But a wide majority of the US Congress does not want to be called racist so impeachment’s been off the table since the man’s been elected. As a consequence Obama’s been in a bubble more than most presidents. He almost made it through a term without it biting too hard but its biting now.

      The film is a cover, an excuse, the result of some muslim with good google skills sussing out the stupidest, most offensive anti-islam thing he could find on the net to set the kaffir to chasing their tails over. AQ has changed strategies and the next one’s going to be a bitch. And Obama does not have an answer for this new iteration of AQ action and has been demonstrating it. He’s got Libya’s president and Egypt’s president both testing him in different ways and he is failing both tests. Libya is asking if we’re a worthwhile friend to support and Egypt is asking if we’re a worthwhile enemy that must be hedged against and placated. In both cases Obama’s behavior reveals the answer is no. People will die over those nos. In fact, they already are as our friends in Libya with documentation in the Benghazi facility are hunted by AQ and co.

      The press notification of the midnight raid is a message to the muslim mob. It’s saying that the US is trying to implement blasphemy laws and protection of muslim sensitivities. The judiciary wouldn’t do this. Their instincts are not in this direction. It’s so transparently an involvement in the politics of foreign policy that even the wildest judge on the 9th circuit (the most reversed circuit in the country) wouldn’t touch this without executive direction.

      Mr. Nakoula is an idiot for attempting to do this while on parole. But he’s a brave idiot who believed that the law would stand and that America has no anti-blasphemy laws. In that belief he needs to be supported because to establish anti-blasphemy laws in the US is an invitation to civil unrest and low grade war throughout the country. We have enough leftovers from the last round of the US toying with that sort of thing (state constitution Blaine amendments).

    93. Joe Citizen Says:

      TM,

      Dhimmi agreements deserving impeachment???
      I honestly do not think that there is anything close to sufficient time for you and I to reconcile our worldviews, even give the best of intentions. From my perspective, you are way off the deep end.

      I think Obama is handling these situations just about right, encouraging the new leaders in Libya and Egypt when it is appropriate, rebuking them when necessary – basically guiding them on their path to learning about how to handle their new responsibilities – something neither they nor anyone around them have any experience at, nor probably ever seriously thought they would ever have a chance to exercise.

      But there really is no point in us trading opinions here – I am sure your mind is closed to anything I might say, and I must admit, I have no interest in following you down your deep hole.

      So lets just look to some basic empirical facts.

      2 points. I repeat my question to you – where is the filmmaker now? Is he still detained? Tortured? Or is he a free man.

      And please could you update us on the actual legislation that you imply just must be working its way through Congress, that would implement blasphemy laws?

      You see, I read you on this subject, and to be honest (sorry if this sounds harsh) it comes off as totally nutty paranoia. Now, if you could point to something real – Nakoula’s loss of liberty, or some actual legislation, then maybe I could have reason to reconsider.

    94. TMLutas Says:

      Joe Citizen – If I had a great deal of confidence you understood what dhimmitude was and how such agreements, by their nature, violate several articles of the US Constitution (mostly in the bill of rights), I’d call your position anti-american. But I don’t know you so I’ll just chalk it up to plain ignorance. We have for many years, decried the totalitarian/authoritarian habit of the midnight knock, of “voluntary” visits for interrogation that are in no reasonable sense voluntary. Were you aware of that? That is an empirical fact. But somehow it’s ok when we do it because… what? You are defining jackbooted thuggery down with your questions and it is, frankly, a bit nauseating. This is not prospective or speculative, merely examining the Nakoula case with how we judge other nations on these subjects.

      We currently have so many laws that some legal experts opine that we each commit on the order of three felonies a day. This isn’t right wing paranoia but opinion from experts that are both on the left and the right. In that environment there is no need for any legislation, merely for selective enforcement on the disfavored. That you think that we need legislation at this point is well behind the times.