NSA

Better To Not Protest the NSA Than To Hold Hands With Libertarians, Says Progressive Scribbler

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Edward Snowden
The Guardian

Writing at Salon, "New York based journalist and consultant to progressive causes" Tom Watson objects to the anti-surveillance Stop Watching Us rally, scheduled for October 26 in Washington, D.C., because it commits the unforgivable sin of reaching across partisan lines. The fatal flaw of this gathering, says this breathless correspondent, is that it includes (gasp) libertarians! Much better to keep objections to the NSA and intrusive snoopiness as a private club for those who, he insists, really care about privacy. "The path to NSA reform so clearly lies inside the Democrats' big tent," he writes, "and runs through its liberal wing."

Stop giggling. That's so not polite.

Writes Watson:

This is a vital cause, and I agree with it.

Yet I cannot support this coalition or the rally. It is fatally compromised by the prominent leadership and participation of the Libertarian Party and other libertarian student groups; their hard-core ideology stands in direct opposition to almost everything I believe in as a social democrat.

The Libertarian Party itself – inaccurately described by Stop Watching Us as a "public advocacy organization" – is a right-wing political party that opposes all gun control laws and public healthcare, supported the government shutdown, dismisses public education, opposes organized labor, favors the end of Social Security as we know it, and argues in its formal political manifesto that "we should eliminate the entire social welfare system" while supporting "unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types."

Yet my progressive friends would take the stage with the representatives of this political movement? Why? The loss is much greater than the gain. Organizers trade their own good names and reputations to stand alongside – and convey legitimacy to – a party that opposes communitarian participation in liberal society, and rejects the very role of government itself. And their own argument for privacy is weakened by the pollution of an ideology that uses its few positive civil liberties positions as a predator uses candy with a child.

Later, Watson goes on to describe libertarians as really authoritarian because "it's always about the man on the balcony" whatever the fuck that means. Cuz progressives don't really mean it when they go all control-y, but libertarians secretly do because Hayek hearted Pinochet. But we already got that Watson doesn't like us from the whole child-predator thing.

The true larf riot comes with this tidbit, apparently written after Watson awoke from a stroke that erased the last decade. Or three.

Going "all in" with the libertarian purists is a fatal and unnecessary compromise; reform is clearly needed, but the presence of anti-government laissez-faire wingers at the beating heart of the privacy movement will surely sour the very political actors that movement desperately needs to make actual – and not symbolic, link bait – progress in its fight.

I speak of the progressive movement and the Democratic Party, of course.

For those whose feet still touch the ground, the path to NSA reform so clearly lies inside the Democrats' big tent – and runs through its liberal wing. And because we are a liberal republic, whose central government is not leaving the landscape anytime soon (the libertarians' fondest goal), change must also run through an elected Congress.

Democrats? Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Your Cell Phone) took to the pages of USA Today to defend NSA surveillance as recently as yesterday. Sen. Harry Reid (D-Your Email In Box) called Edward Snowden a "traitor" for revealing the NSA's excesses. And President Obama, who is, in fact, a Democrat, loves him some NSA surveillance.

Statler and Waldorf
The Muppets

So, of course do Republicans. Rep. John Boehner (R-Orange) shares Reid's sentiments about Snowden. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-The Inquisition) digs the NSA, and so does Sen. John McCain (R-Get Off My Lawn).

The whole establishment, Democrat and Republican, favors an intrusive surveillance states. It's left to mavericks like Sen. Ron Wyden and Sen. Rand Paul to provide opposition to the NSA that's affiliated with either major party. That's why a coalition reaching across partisan lines, and certainly not restricting itself to one or the other compromised and deeply authoritarian major party, is necessary to press for change. And libertarians, with our inherent suspicion of the state, are a natural part of such a coalition.

That inherent suspicion may explain why Edward Snowden, before revealing the NSA's shenanigans, contributed money to libertarian-Republican Ron Paul's political efforts. He was also called "a libertarian hero"—at Salon.

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  1. …their hard-core ideology stands in direct opposition to almost everything I believe in as a social democrat.

    Oh, it so does.

    1. I’m not altogether sure he is using “social democrat” right either. Do you think he is aware that Stalin did not like them very much?

      1. He and his ilk were the useful idiots Stalin used to further tighten his dictatorship, before killing them.

      2. He don’t know no Stalin. You made that up!

    2. Yes, and one of the things he believes in as a “social democrat” is that the NSA’s syping isn’t really all that important, or all that bad. It only has to be protested to keep the useful idiots happy, or as a handy club to bash those evil rightwingers.

      The left, for all the ‘libertarialian’ noises they make, are far too willing to split the civil liberties baby in half. Which suggests that it never really was their baby in the first place.

    3. Democrats always want to cast Libertarians as right-wing, because they think it will fool some Republicans into voting for Libertarians.

      The Republicans apparently aren’t smart enough to play the same game.

      1. I always figured that was more to make sure Democrats don’t consider voting for Libertarians. But no reason it can’t be both.

  2. You just don’t get it, Tuccille. Liberty is actually slavery. Only by giving up our liberty to a powerful central government can we ever be truly free.

    1. This guy’s piece reminds me of my favorite Orwell quote:

      “The real division is not between conservatives and revolutionaries but between authoritarians and libertarians”

      http://www.goodreads.com/quote…..naries-but

      Tom Watson ain’t no revolutionary, and if he’d see federal surveillance of all our communications rather than make common cause with libertarians, then I guess he’s, at least, objectively authoritarian.

      I’m trying to imagine how things work in his world. How do you oppose the surveillance state–but only in a way that doesn’t make common cause with libertarians?

      I guess he says he wants to do it within the Democratic Party, but I don’t think he’s been paying attention, lately, if he thinks there’s anyone in the Democratic Party that cares about an individual’s rights (to privacy, for instance) against the interests of the state.

      1. Just go along with the Democratic Party in establishing a total state, then We can scale back the surveillance.

        Soon enough, the unmutual will learn to monitor themselves, and We won’t have to monitor them anymore.

        1. We should start asking some of these Democrats who we should vote for on some of these issues they claim to care about.

          You want me to vote for Democrats to stop the NSA from violating our Fourth Amendment rights?

          Okay! So, which Democrat–precisely–should I be supporting? Are there any in California, New York or Massachusetts like that? Is Nancy Pelosi a big defender of the Fourth Amendment–so that if she becomes Speaker, we can expect her to do something about it?

          Is Hillary gonna bring the NSA to heel if she’s elected president?

          Who the hell can I vote for–in the Democratic Party–that gives a damn about my Fourth Amendment rights?

          This Watson guy is a blind man in a dark room looking for a black cat that isn’t there.

          1. You missed Feinstein. I think we can trust her…

          2. +1 Stand and deliver..

        2. Serious communists understand the socialist state will ultimately wither away. The need for total surveillance will wither with it.

          But before this stage, good communists know that total information awareness is necessary for the security and proper functioning of a totalitarian socialist state.

          Total surveillance is necessary to bring actually achieve rights to privacy.

          1. Those who won’t go for security will always go for proper functioning. The terms on the Ocare page inform us that our info will be checked against existing dbs and they better jive up under penalty of perjury. Of course it is necessary to the proper functioning of…. something, I guess, that is otherwise functioning properly. Forward.

      2. In Orwell’s day weren’t the “libertarians” anarcho-communists?

        1. If I remember correctly, he wrote that while he was fighting with an Anarchist brigade in the Spanish Civil War.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barcelona_May_Days

          I believe he was talking about the Stalinists at the time–it isn’t about revolutionaries…it’s about authoritarians!

          I suppose this goes to show how much better I am at this sort of thing than our friend Tom Watson. I can make common cause with an Anarchist/Socialist like Orwell–even seeing some ideological similarities.

          I suspect Tom Watson might have faulted Orwell for making common cause with Fascism’s enemies.

          1. Orwell was one of those leftists who really did take all that stuff about civil liberties seriously. This is an attitude that doesn’t appear to be very prevalent among the Modern American Left today.

            1. Yeah, that’s almost completely disappeared from the left today. There used to be more honest to God liberals dedicated to civil rights out there.

              1. I suppose once the USSR collapsed there was no need to try act like their socialism was different from the USSR’s and you can’t allow Republican wreckers to defeat the Socialist Utopia.

                1. I think the honest liberals also won most of the legitimate legal battles.

                  Jim Crow is gone. Gay marriage is pretty much gone as an issue. Blatant discrimination against women is illegal. Once you’ve got all those discriminatory laws knocked down, what’s left to do?

                  We’re still not seeing equality of outcome, so if they want the government to do even more, they have to go beyond that stuff, and that’s when they become authoritarian.

                  1. Part of it seems to be a realization that, even when they’ve given these shining examples of what the virtuous state can do, others just won’t come to the State. Finally wind up hating the other for not coming around.

                    If the other wants less than a total state? Well, then we need a total state to punish them.

                    1. My problems with the Vituous State is the same problems I have with ghosts, vampires and teenage virgins.
                      I have little reason to believe in their existence.
                      Whatever minor referents they might have in realty are certainly fleeting.
                      And I find nothing convincing in their reputed virtuosity.

                  2. Instead of Jim Crow, it’s now about “proving” discrimination with statistics, “racist” sports team names, and the “racism” of all jokes at the expense of black Democrats. It’ll also be about transexual rights, attacking Christians and others who think homosexuality is immoral, and importance of teaching gay sexual practices to kindergartners to fight “homophobia.”

                    It will never end.

                    1. It used to be that the government could and would arrest a restaurant owner for serving black people at the counter. Jim Crow was something the government imposed on people–and the liberals were fighting to stop that government imposition.

                      A lot of the anti-discrimination stuff they’re doing now has to do with using the government to impose its will on people–and the liberals are all about trying to justify that government imposition.

                      They got to a certain point on the freedom curve, and then they switched sides.

                    2. Trannies Rights is a curious development. By precedent set in Cali, it seems that not only sex-changes are a legitimate medical procedure chargeable to the state (for prisoners), also are sex-changes BACK. And why wouldn’t they be? If someone can think they were born in the ‘wrong body’, surely their first experience with that new body could legitimately prove the whole thing was in error. The precedent awaits to justify three or more operations but I don’t think it is a stretch at all. If I can get Ocare coverage I will petition to have my own sex change but not just to the opposite… how boring! I’m working on a brand new gender identity that will have elements of male and female but also a few things from the animal kingdom and I’m reading up on energetic chemistry! Forward.

                  3. Blatant discrimination against women is illegal.

                    How can you say that when there are still stand-up urinals in segregated restrooms?

                    You misogynist.

                    1. Nobody said women aren’t allowed to use those stand-up urinals, if they so desire.

                    2. All they have to do is face the other way. I’ve never understood the hesitance. They mostly don’t sit down on public commodes anyhow.

                  4. “I think the honest liberals also won most of the legitimate legal battles.”

                    Conservatives and traditional religious orders spearheaded those. So not “liberal” in any meaningful sense of the term. “Liberty-loving” maybe.

                    “Jim Crow is gone. Gay marriage is pretty much gone as an issue. Blatant discrimination against women is illegal. Once you’ve got all those discriminatory laws knocked down, what’s left to do?”

                    What’s next is they pass a whole new set of discriminatory laws. Because their problem isn’t with discrimination, it’s with discriminating against the wrong people. They’re going exactly where they always intended to go.

              2. Yeah, that’s almost completely disappeared from the left today. There used to be more honest to God liberals dedicated to civil rights out there.

                One of the (several) big turning points to that was in the 1960s. The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee began going out and helping black people learn their rights and register to vote. They were all about getting rid of racially discriminating laws and such.

                Then the Soviets discovered them and civil rights went to the back burner.

            2. Winston|10.21.13 @ 9:59PM|#
              “Orwell was one of those leftists who really did take all that stuff about civil liberties seriously.”
              Which is the reason he turned on the commies while the remaining lefties just made excuses.
              I think Sarte had to die to quit apologizing.

            3. Yes, he was. And it’s ultimately why Orwell’s political thinking was incoherent. The moderns get their understanding of socialism much more thoroughly than Orwell did. He was essentially trying to square the circle.

        2. In Orwell’s day weren’t the “libertarians” anarcho-communists?

          The word originates in such fashion, but that was a century before Orwell, and by his time it had gained its current meaning.

    2. And this is what gives the little statist cock sucker away. What he REALLY means is that he doesn’t what the state soying on him and his “good” buddies, but that it is totally important that the government keep tabs on those terrorist libertarian types. Just ask about his views on the IRS targeting the Tea Party, and I’m sure it will become quite clear…

      1. “want the state spying”, is what I should have said, but alcohol will inhibit one’s typing skills

    3. He found this profound enough to quote, to support the ‘libertarians are the real authoritarians’ claim:

      “As paradoxical as it may seem, rightwing libertarianism has always been a deeply authoritarian political philosophy. It claims to value liberty in some general and all-encompassing sense above all other principles, but the particular types of freedom libertarianism seeks to defend and extend are always, tacitly and implicitly, forms of liberty for the few at the expense of the many. Thus libertarianism stands for the unfreedom of the majority.”

      ‘Forms of liberty for the few at the expense of the many’ is just a stupider way of saying FREEDOM IS SLAVERY. And that ‘thus’ is just delicious.

  3. “Yet I cannot support this coalition or the rally. It is fatally compromised by the prominent leadership and participation of the Libertarian Party and other libertarian student groups”.

    I wonder how far he’s willing to take that. Would he rather live in an oppressive society than shake hands with a libertarian?

    “Yet my progressive friends would take the stage with the representatives of this political movement? Why?”

    If he’s feeling defensive because his friends are willing to make common cause, then I guess that’s a good sign.

    1. The takeaway from all this is the confession that Democrats are more about show than substance.

      Not that it has been in doubt. But now they’ve made a show about the confession.

      1. “The takeaway from all this is the confession that Democrats are more about show than substance.”

        No, the take away is that Democrats care more about taking peoples’ money than they do about civil liberties.

    2. Would he rather live in an oppressive society than shake hands with a libertarian?

      Not that I’d want to shake the greasy little bootlicker’s hand…

      -jcr

    3. I’m tempted to tell him that, 13th amendment notwithstanding, this libertarian is more than willing to see his ass enslaved. I have no truck with people who wear their shackles as badges of honor and wear them willingly.

  4. For those whose feet still touch the ground, the path to NSA reform so clearly lies inside the Democrats’ big tent ? and runs through its liberal wing. And because we are a liberal republic, whose central government is not leaving the landscape anytime soon (the libertarians’ fondest goal), change must also run through an elected Congress.

    Yes, when have progressives ever used dangerous, state run propaganda or abuse of civil liberties in order to get what they want?

  5. Due to high taxes, 25% of French university students want to leave the country. The number is 80% for people with ‘marketable degrees.’

    The French may finally realize the grand left-wing goal of having a society that consists entirely of poor people, politicians and gender studies majors.

    1. Gender studies is way to generic to be marketable. Something like Goth Canadian Lesbian Studies, otoh, is a degree worth pursuing.

    2. Well, a society that consists of those groups, briefly, before it collapses into a society of a few warlords and the people who work for them.

    3. Quoted you on my fb page. Have a feeling they’re going to ask who you are. You shall be shrouded in mystery to all except the NSA.

    4. Wait, 80% of people with marketable degrees make up less than 25% of their university students? Geez, they’re even more screwed than I thought.

      1. Who is admitting that their degrees are not marketable? Did their guidance counselors tell them that? Maybe ten years ago but hope sprang eternal, once.

  6. “The path to NSA reform so clearly lies inside the Democrats’ big tent,” he writes, “and runs through its liberal wing.”

    It’s a testament to the hardiness of the modern semiconductor that Watson was able to publish that sentence without his computer exploding due to a fatal logic error.

    1. Also a testimony to the “Team Blue Uber Alles” mindset.

      (Yes, the use of German is malice aforethought.)

      1. The French have a phrase for that mentality, pas d’ennemis ? gauche.

        No enemies to the left.

    2. Modern day EDAC is indeed a wonder to behold. But remember that Shannon taught us that there are still absolute limits…

  7. …”For those whose feet still touch the ground, the path to NSA reform so clearly lies inside the Democrats’ big tent ? and runs through its liberal wing”…
    ^?
    I’m sure you can find a proggy who is not happy with the NSA, but the proggies in general have been notably silent about this, the IRS scandal, Benghazi, and the several wars that Obo has entered.

    1. Nah, perfectly reasonable. The Proggies don’t set up the tent unless the opposition party is in charge.

      1. Proggies are about power for Proggies.

  8. Because I’m bored and angry about other things, I’m having a twitter conversation with this guy. I’m convinced he gets everything he knows about libertarianism from other “progressive liberals” on twitter and Facebook and Salon. Because he doesn’t seem to have the slightest clue what he’s talking about.

    1. …”Because he doesn’t seem to have the slightest clue what he’s talking about.”

      Almost universal.
      We get fed statist opinions on a constant basis; TV, radio, print, the web, etc. There is no lack of information on what statists think.
      OTOH, if you want honest info on libertarian thought, you gotta go looking for it.
      Instead, we get folks who spent a drunken evening in their sophomore year listening to a buddy who skimmed three chapters of Atlas Shrugged, and they are going to lecture us re libertarian positions on issues.
      Pathetic.

      1. Maybe, but it’s pretty much how I became a libertarian twenty years ago. If you accept the basic concept, the education often follows. And, seriously, how hard is it to accept that big government sucks?

        1. Well, I have had “conversations” in the comments sections of “news” sites where the other guy is totally convinced that libertarians are weak people who are afraid that the government is no longer going to be on their side, but instead help the other guy. Any argument to the contrary, that libertarians want government to stay out of it, and that libertarians tend to be self-supporting types, is met with cries of “not true! you don’t know what these libertarians truly believe!”
          As I have said before, as long as the general population gets their education from the state, and their news from the state organs known as the “main stream media”, there is no hope.
          I respect you all for trying to fight the good fight, but I have come to the conclusion that the Republic is doomed, and the only hope lies in a technological rebellion that can keep one step ahead of the Stasi.

    2. Gotta great link that spells it out, but I went to it to grab the address and the site is temporarily down.

      Here it is anyway, you might use it later. A real good libertarianism 101.

      http://www.libertarianism.org/introduction

  9. …an ideology that uses its few positive civil liberties positions as a predator uses candy with a child.

    Tom Watson is afraid some of the progressives at the rally might be tempted to get into the van.

    1. THIS, THIS, THIS!!!!!!1111

      Both Teams really fear us.

    2. THIS, THIS, THIS!!!!!!1111

      Both Teams really fear us.

      1. I guess they fear us twice as much as I thought.

    3. I am very late to the party, but yeah, it is that. Guys like this moron are scared shitless that some of their minions and useful idiots might actually talk to a real life libertarian and find out what that is really all about, as opposed to the outright lies that they hear from guys like this and the MSM.

      In order to keep useful idiots in the progressive camp, they can only be allowed to hear the right propaganda. Otherwise, some of them just might snap out of it.

      1. I missed it too. Best thread of the day and just as I start to read it, my dad called.

      2. I don’t believe it is outright lies that they base their assessment of us on, it is their ignorance of the fundamental nature of the state that persuades them that those who oppose it, or merely want it greatly restrained, are nihilistic evil doers who if we get our way will bring the end of civilization. They live in fear, like animals.

    4. I snorted when I read that line. What ridiculous imagery. He needs medication.

  10. Progressives are NOT opposed to the surveillance state. They just want to regulate it and put top men and women consisting of a proper quota of minorities in charge.

    1. For a lot of hippie era people, the idea that the Democratic Party somehow doesn’t represent protecting our civil rights makes their heads explode.

      1. I’m sure the following statement would be extremely controversial on a lefty site, but…

        I sometimes wonder if certain people on the left aren’t indulging a certain form of racism–when they assume that Barack Obama supports civil rights just because he’s black.

    2. Sure. What good progressive hasn’t read Discipline and Punish with its paen to power and the Surveillance State? I’m pretty sure that Foucault would be described as one of the underlying philosophical pillars of current progressive thought.

  11. I believe sarcasmic has a very relevant quote for this involving principals and principles.

    1. “Snort my taint”?

      No, wait, that’s Popehat. But it’s relevant here too.

      1. No. Fuck you, cut spending.

  12. The feeling is mutual.

    I’m thinking of going to the rally but just the thought of visiting the Imperial City sickens me.

  13. Watson goes on to describe libertarians as really authoritarian because “it’s always about the man on the balcony” whatever the fuck that means.

    The Man on the Balcony is the third novel in the detective series revolving around Swedish police detective Martin Beck, and was written by Sj?wall and Wahl?? and originally published as Mannen p? balkongen in 1967.

    Sheesh, J.D., must I explain *everything*?

    1. Yes please. If that’s the origin, what does the phrase actually mean?

      1. Rich is being funny. I’m sure the author of the piece is referring to Mussolini. You know, because libertarians love dictators.

      2. a pedosexual murderer may have been seen by an unidentified serial robber who was watching for prey in the area

        Um, what J.D. said.

        *** kicks pebble ***

        1. What’s a pedosexual, Walter?

          1. I’m guessin’ it’s a foot fetich thing, like a shoe sniffer?

            What a man does in the privacy of his own home with a woman’s shoe is nobody’s business except his, God’s, the woman the shoe belongs to, and the NSA’s.

            1. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDRENS??!!!??

              1. They can get their own shoe.

  14. Mr. Watson

    If you are for all gun control laws, public healthcare, infinite debt, public education, organized labor, Social Security, the social welfare system, and hyper-control of the market:

    Why stop there, the NSA should be cool with you.

    1. WHOA WHOA WHOA! Let’s not go crazy there.

      Watson, like all right thinking individuals, thinks that the IRS should be allowed to look into all your personal info in order to save people from poverty. This is completely different than those gap toothed, hillbilly conservatives who think the NSA should be allowed to look into all your personal info in order to save people from terrorism.

      There is no comparison between those two positions.

  15. I’ve had this conversation with progressive friends. The best they can do is harp about how gay marriage and abortion are civil rights and therefore they must vote Team Blue.

    Needless to say they aren’t amused when I point out that marriage equality has been in the LP platform since 1976.

    1. Libertarians support “Civil Liberties” but not “Civil Rights” since the former protects us from government abuse and the latter is used as an excuse to trample over property rights and freedom of association.

    2. I really don’t get the mindset of people like that. If you have a better job and get to keep more of your money, you can go somewhere and get a damn abortion. And as a civil rights issue, gay marriage is just trivial. Just live together. Who cares about the official paperwork? But people would rather have a sucky economy as long as they have “abortion rights” and “gay rights.”

    3. Mine just yell and scream about “THEY’RE ANARCHISTS AND THEY AREN’T SERIOUS! THE REAL WORLD NEEDS GOVERNMENT!”

      What’s the threshold for out-and-out-fascist?

      Is anyone running a pool yet for when they cross that?

      1. I once asked my brother if he thinks there should be any limits at all to government.

        He couldn’t name one.

        That’s as good of a definition of a fascist as any IMO.

        Oh, and he’s a congressional staffer now.

        1. How many leftists will say that there is a limit on how much governments should spend?

      2. What’s the threshold for out-and-out-fascist?

        Is anyone running a pool yet for when they cross that?

        If they haven’t already, they’re damn close.

        The Dems are moving to the bottom of the Nolan chart and the Reps are moving to the top. We got us a no shit, good vs evil, conflict brewing.

        1. The Dems are moving to the bottom of the Nolan chart and the Reps are moving to the top. We got us a no shit, good vs evil, conflict brewing.

          Uh…like 5 Republicans have moved to the top. I’ll have a bit more faith when they stop electing John Boehner Speaker of the House.

          1. Patience grasshopper. It may not be happening as quickly as most of us would like, but there is no doubt it’s happening.

            I’d say there’s a 40% chance of seeing a libertarian president in 2016.

  16. At around the turn of the millennium, I was libertarian, because I thought conservatives were good on economics, but bad on civil liberties, while liberals were good on civil liberties, but bad on economics.

    Now I’m libertarian because conservatives don’t give a shit about economics and liberals/progressives don’t give a shit about civil liberties.

    1. This is pretty accurate. I used to think I had common ground with liberals on some issues, but then I realized they don’t actually care about any of those issues and are just desperate, unthinking powermongers.

      There are exceptions, but most progressives would rather see a Democrat in the White House than have anything get done about civil liberties.

      1. Not only “civil liberties”, liberals actively support the military-prison-industrial complex.

        I put civil liberties in quotes because the notion is absurd. So is “economic liberty”. There is just liberty.

        1. I agree, I am no longer to compartmentalize economic and civil liberties. If you are against one you are against liberty.

          1. This! Freedom is freedom.

            Liberals tie themselves in knots trying to push some liberties while stripping others. It doesn’t work.

            1. As do the conservatives, but to a slightly lesser degree.

              1. Some – I can talk conservatives out of it, the Leftists don’t want to hear it.

                1. There’s a reason for this.

                  If a conservative decides “…and I really mean it”, the only logical conclusion is libertarianism.

                  If a progressive decides “…and I really mean it”, the only logical conclusion is totalitarianism.

        2. I put civil liberties in quotes because the notion is absurd. So is “economic liberty”. There is just liberty.

          Agreed. When I consider what narrow sliver of rights and liberties democrats are defending when we say they’re “good on civil liberties,” it’s glaringly pathetic: abortion, gay marriage, and, perhaps, a little drug reform? Out of everything in life, just that? If that truly is all there is to liberty, then freedom is just a special pleading fallacy, nothing more.

      2. Agreed on that last point, and I think most conservatives would rather see a Republican in the White House that any real economic reform.

        1. I think most conservatives would rather see a Republican in the White House that any real economic reform.

          And that’s probably what we’re getting because Christy will be the next president. It won’t matter to most Republicans that Christy’s been poor to mediocre on economics and that financially Jersey’s a basket-case.

          1. I don’t see it. I don’t think Christy can get elected but we’ll see.

          2. NO fucking way.

            Fuck that fat fascist fuck.

          3. I think it’s just the opposite. Cristy’s not that bad on economics, Jersey was a worse financial basket-case before Cristy, but he’s an authoritarian, anti-second amendment smug bastard who has the typical politician’s contempt for the people he rules.

            1. It might be just who republicans are looking for. Someone who’s really not that different form McCain politically, but has a lot more fighting spirit, and a lot quicker on his feet politically.

              It wouldn’t shock me if that’s where the republican party lands: don’t change the message; change the age, poundage, and bass tones in the messenger.

            2. Christy’s main appeal to most Republicans is his standing up to the unions. On other issues, not so great.

            3. Dude. Anyone that imposes a price ceiling (on gasoline for instance) is an economics moron.

          4. Christie doesn’t survive the GOP primaries. Perry’s got a much better chance. Either would be a poor candidate, but for different reasons.

    2. +1 (Go Terps!)

      I think my being a libertarian (and a Libertarian) really cemented when I started to consider that Progs, Dems, and Reps all hold positions that boil down to their finding a certain amount of extortion, violence, and even murder perfectly acceptable as long as it compels me to behave in a way they find acceptable.

      I sort of went from “oh, no, there are liberal Republicans and SoCon Democrats and all sorts of things,” to “there are authoritarian thugs and their lackeys, and people who aren’t despicable or hopelessly idiotic.”

  17. TEAM GIMMEDAT values free shit over liberty? Like, wow man.

  18. Organizers trade their own good names and reputations to stand alongside ? and convey legitimacy to ? a party that opposes communitarian participation in liberal society, and rejects the very role of government itself.

    Wow, that right there is some classic prog Newspeak for “they reject the idea of putting peoples’ liberties and property up to a vote”.

    And their own argument for privacy is weakened by the pollution of an ideology that uses its few positive civil liberties positions as a predator uses candy with a child.

    PSST! Hey kid, I’ve got some civil liberties in my van. Would you like some due process and a glass of white wine?

    1. a party that opposes communitarian participation in liberal society

      That’s 100% false. We don’t oppose that at all. We simply don’t believe the government has a role in that, and in fact has displaced the organic communitarian systems that used to be there with technocratic imitations that are less effective.

      1. The bedrock of progressive ideology is that GOVERNMENT = SOCIETY.

        To attack government is no different than attacking the very idea of society. That’s why it’s so difficult to get through to the Tony’s of the world, you are challenging the cornerstone of their ideology by suggesting peaceful cooperation as an alternative to the force of government.

      2. and rejects the very role of government itself

        Also false. Libertarians aren’t anarchists.

        1. Exactly. The government would ideally be an excellent arbiter of disputes and enforce the NAP where the aggrieved party lacked sufficient force on their own and the aggressor refused redress.

          1. Although I am sympathetic to the anarchists’ arguments that eventually the state is worse than the non-state.

            1. It certainly is right now.

        2. Some are.

          1. That seems like the result of linguistic imprecision. The normal definitions are “minimal government” and “no government.” You can’t be in favor of both “some” and “none” at the same time.

            1. I don’t see how it’s linguistic imprecision, libertarianism includes both of those. The terms for those two are minarchism and anarchism, two flavors of libertarianism.

            2. Yeah, but libertarians are much scarier when they’re anarchists. So they default to that.

              I mean, my god: someone who doesn’t think we need any government? ANY? Why, think of the disobedience he must be capable of!

            3. What Apatheist ?_?? said. The etymology of the word ‘libertarian’ begins with an obscurant branch of communist anarchist. The communist association no longer exist, except in the concept of voluntary communes, actually popular with libertarians up to the seventies, but the anarchist tradition of libertarianism is still very much in play. A ‘libertarian’ is one from my 19th Century copy of the Oxford dictionary is ‘one who advocates liberty.’ This is still the most useful definition in my humble opinion. You see, there is no linguistic impression on my part. I spent perhaps a year of my life in various libraries and books stores in search of this knowledge so I could possess a high degree of certainty on this matter so, to be honest, I’m a bit offended you would believe my understanding of libertarianism as an anarchist comes from confusion.

              1. no linguistic impression on my part.

                Man plans, Cthulu laughs.

              2. I’m a bit offended you would believe my understanding of libertarianism as an anarchist comes from confusion.

                Not to the point that I wouldn’t call you a pal. Just a wee bit much that is nothing like butthurt at all. A tap that leaves no indention, maybe.

      3. Brett L|10.21.13 @ 9:43PM|#
        a party that opposes communitarian participation in liberal society

        That’s 100% false. We don’t oppose that at all. We simply don’t believe the government has a role in that, and in fact has displaced the organic communitarian systems that used to be there with technocratic imitations that are less effective.

        Don’t meet that shitcock “Watson” half way..

        “a party that opposes *imposed and involuntary* communitarian participation mandates through coercion in liberal a regressive authoritarian society”

        That’s much better…

    2. Wow, that right there is some classic prog Newspeak for “they reject the idea of putting peoples’ liberties and property up to a vote”.

      Two wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for dinner. Watson is just confident that he’s one of the wolves right now.

      That’s why we’re better than him. (Yeah, I went there). Because I’ll defend Watson’s rights even if he sells mine down the river.

      1. “Because I’ll defend Watson’s rights even if he sells mine down the river.”

        Yep, but I’d sell *HIM* down the river.

      2. Liberty is a well armed sheep disputing the vote.

      3. You’re better because if you win the argument you don’t force the loser to agree at gunpoint.

    3. communitarian is newspeak.

      It is not related to community, which is a voluntary association.

      Communitarians point guns at people to make they participate

  19. Saying you wish to “reform” the NSA means that you do not oppose its existence, you only wish to tinker at the edges.

    1. Welcome to progressiveland. The total state is a good thing. Sure it gets abused, but it’s not the power that invites abuse. It’s Bush, or something.

      1. Once the Right Top Men are in charge then we can have the worker’s paradise without the shortages, secret police or gulags.

  20. Any Progressive scribbler with a lick of sense would rather be cuddling with lovely sweater girl Barack Obama than be caught dead appearing to agree with a libertarian!

    1. Barack Obama as a sweater girl. No there is one disturbing image.

  21. Assuming the man on the balcony has something to do with a cult of personality or fascism, is there anything closer to that idea in recent memory than the iconic Hope poster?

    1. Yeah, those are vile. They remind me of something outta some third-world despot driven shithole from back on the late 60’s though the 70’s. “?VIVA El Presidente!” would of looked just as natural on that poster, plastered all over the walls of a war torn slum…

      1. This. I said so at the time, but I was thinking more Che’!

  22. OT: Oilers fans, get in line. Bud Adams has died. Looks like I’ll be road-tripping this weekend, with a big-gulp the last 100 miles.

    1. No need for a line. I think it’s ok to cross streams for this one.

  23. Any of you bitches who think we can make friends with these assholes, think again. Consider this a teachable moment.

    their hard-core ideology stands in direct opposition to almost everything I believe in as a social democrat.

    oh yes… oh yes, yes it does. Your ideology implicitly creates the total state. It’s either done to fight commies, fight terrorists or exact social justice or fight obesity. Pick your poison, Watson, you’re on the side of the devils on this one. Go pound sand.

    1. Really letting the mask slip isn’t he?

    2. Your ideology implicitly creates the total state.

      They’re weeks or maybe a couple of months away from making it explicit, I think.

    3. Any of you bitches who think we can make friends with these assholes, think again.

      Yeah, but there may be a few we can pick off that still possess old school liberal views on civil liberties.

      1. Those care called liberals, not progressives.

  24. FB friends are annoyed because I posted the Salon article with:

    This guy is absolutely right. Libertarians want to take over your government. And then stop letting it spy on you. Then we want to stop making you ask the government’s permission before you open a business, or sell raw goat milk from your farm or make your own spirits or sell them to your friends. We want the cops to have to prove that you are dangerous before kicking down your door with a SWAT team and stop shooting dogs just because they can get away with it. We really are monsters.

    Two with things along the lines of “sure, Brett, you’re okay, but so many other people who call themselves libertarians are racist bigots”. I keep asking them to name names, because all of the libertarians I know in town (maybe 4 of us) are well to the left of our “liberal” friends on things like drug legalization and policing. So far, no answers. Like the Yale professor, they “know” evil Libertarians are out there, they just don’t know any.

    1. Two with things along the lines of “sure, Brett, you’re okay, but so many other people who call themselves libertarians are racist bigots”.

      They’re correct. Budgets, individual choice and freedom are racist code words.

    2. Principled libertarians believe in freedom-of-association and property rights. They also oppose affirmative action in education and hiring on both principled and practical grounds.

      Anyway, that is how they will push the “libertarians are racist” meme. Hopefully the race card has been played out.

  25. I felt the same way about ANSWER.

    But at least Libertarians don’t have 100 million victims of progroms and gulags and manmade famines to answer for.

    1. That’s because we’re unserious.

    2. But of course, that’s only because society had been saved from libertarian leadership!
      Why, with libertarian leaders, women and minority bodies would be piled in the streets!

      1. I always tell people I would totally pay to keep my street clear of bodies, and the pigs and pig shit will be worth more than the cost of clearing the bodies, so it won’t take long before the pig farmers just come and take the bodies in Libertopia.

        1. Yeah, but who will pay for the street?

          tl;dr ROADZ

          1. Long live the provisional government!.. and may death come swiftly to its enemies.. Now, about those roadz.. grab shovels comrades!

    3. Yeah, but we have Somalia, apparently.

    4. But you’re forgetting 400 years of slavery, which was all Ayn Rand’s fault.

      1. She was white, wasn’t she?

      2. I forgot. Slavery is the result of too much liberty.

        1. I forgot. Slavery is the result of too much liberty.

          “Too much liberty” does allow those with the power to enslave those without it. Government is necessary to combat this (which I doubt any libertarian would contradict). Of course, government has been complicit in enslaving others, too. I guess that just means we need even more goverment.

  26. How does the LP oppose organized labor?

    1. We do oppose using the government to force people to join a union as a condition of working and we do oppose the NLRB as allowing the government to put its very massive thumb on the scales of collective bargaining (almost universally for labor thus far, but it could swing the other way and be just as wrong).

      1. I’m aware, and that’s the point. None of that is opposed to organized labor per se.

        Not that he cares and/or knows.

        1. Just clarifying in case a Salonista accidentally shows up with an open mind.

      2. I assume the real problem for the left is that most libertarians are against government unions, which seems pretty prescient now that they have bankrupted half the states.

    2. For him this; “…using the government to force people to join a union as a condition of working and we do oppose the NLRB as allowing the government to put its very massive thumb on the scales of collective bargaining..” is the definition of opposing organized labor.

      Remember, the left never argues in good faith.

    3. Well, if you’re not willing to put a gun to a worker’s head or beat him up for not joining the union, then you obviously hate the working man!

      -jcr

  27. “Much better to keep objections to the NSA and intrusive snoopiness as a private club for those who, he insists, really care about privacy.”

    Feinstein.

  28. K. Kaprow 38 minutes ago
    Prissy, nasty, frustrated and attention-starved libertarian bloggers are SO upset with you, Mr. Watson. Their obedient puppets reply, reliably, with impotent sarcasm:

    https://reason.com/blog/2013/10…..ho#comment

    Lol, most of the comments are pretty critical though.

    1. attention-starved

      Ahem.

    2. Lol, most of the comments are pretty critical though.

      It’s Salon. Much like Slate, its comments are 40% trolls at this point.

      I’ve read Slate articles without a single positive comment. I don’t know how it’s even possible to publish your own site and not have a single person agree with you.

      1. We are likely to see a lot more of them here in the future, as well.

      2. The Arizona Democrat Party stopped allowing comments on it’s blog because when they did 99% were critical. Now they just post the propaganda.

      3. This is fine in the short run, but in long run it doesn’t bode well.

    3. Kizone Kaprow! That’s the fuckwit that would post youtube videos on my blog all the time quoting H&R comments.

      Holy fuck, I’m pretty sure that’s Mary Stack you guys.

      1. HAHAHAHAHA! It is Mary! I saw her post on a Reason TV youtube video the other day. She was ranting about the evil of our libertarian ‘chat room.’

        She’s mentally unhinged.

        1. I bet she’s freakin’ hot.

          1. I don’t think so. There were some alleged photos posted. Not so much, provided they were actually her.

            1. Crazy like that though. Man. That would suck though… for her… to be that crazy and not be hot.

      2. What is the deal with Mary Stack? Is she some disgruntled libertarian with a vendetta against Reason or just some nutjob? Or both?

        1. I started posting here after her time, but apparently she’s the reason registration exists. She would single handedly drive random weekend threads into the thousands because she’d post hundreds of times.

          She also apparently ran multiple different fake personalities that would argue with each other.

          Apparently she used to drive John completely insane. I wish I’d been around to see that.

          1. She would single handedly drive random weekend threads into the thousands because she’d post hundreds of times.

            That was her as White Indian.

            A “Mary Stack” used to post here years ago and if they are the same person then I wonder what happened?

            1. White Indian in her native habitat:

              https://reason.com/blog/2011/11…..el#comment

              1. Now I remember why I used to stay away from the comments here

                1. Now I remember why I used to stay away from the comments here

                  Fortunately, we were sometimes given prior warning:

                  Proprietist|11.5.11 @ 7:53PM|#

                  AN URGENT WARNING TO ALL VISITORS

                  Reading beyond this point may be hazardous to your health and your brain cells. We highly recommend you very carefully click the Back button on your browser and pretend that this thread never happened. Do not be deluded by the quantity of comments. What little productive dialogue exists on the topic above has been drowned by malicious and insurmountable idiocy and by the tortured cries of desperate regulars trying quixotically to stop it.

                  Just walk away, and live in bliss. We beg you.

            2. She had a lot of different handles. It was never proven that she was White Indian, but she probably was. “Rather” was her default screen name I believe. I didn’t post here in those days, but I started reading threads a couple months before registration

          2. As much as we love to chide John, it really wasn’t pleasant to watch. Mary Stack is a crazy bitch.

            1. There’s no sugar coating it. She was not one of our better posters.

              1. +1 gambol

          3. She also internet stalked some people here, releasing personal information and going after people off site.

          4. I think she wanted John’s luv stick.

    4. If that’s Mary, I think it’s great that she goes around driving so much traffic here to Hit & Run.

      She’s like a reluctant evangelist.

  29. I’m just disappointed that he wasn’t able to fit CEI into his list of evil terrorist outfits.

  30. their hard-core ideology stands in direct opposition to almost everything I believe in as a social democrat.

    Pretty much the only true thing he wrote.

    communitarian participation in liberal society

    I liked this better when it was in German or Russian.

  31. It is continually fascinating to me that the people that demand the government act as our omnipresent mother in every facet of our lives get all outraged when the state actually starts playing the part. Yeah the anti-surveillance crowd is largely libertarian you twits. We actually have half a philosophical leg to stand on!

    1. Could it be that the vast majority of them aren’t upset but they are desperate to keep up the pretense because it serves the false left-right dichotomy?

      Never…

      1. Being seen as being on the socially acceptable side of things does seem to be a big priority for your average low info political philosopher. It’s not that surprising with your average dipshit, but with a dude that apparently gets paid to ponder this stuff all day it is a clear admission of their true colors.

  32. And gee, isn’t it great that Students for Liberty has distributed 150,000 copies of After the Welfare State on campuses around the country, a book that helpfully explains how social programs are “used as an immoral tool of state control and subjection.”

    Also available in free PDF.

    This year’s book is Why Liberty, also available in PDF (scroll down).

    1. If we asked this guy why not just give each person a check for X amount in lieu of welfare programs, how do you think he’d respond?

      1. Actually, I think he’d probably agree with that proposal but have no idea how its related to that quotation.

        To your point, once it’s explained to him he’d probably change his mind and be against it.

    2. Thanks for those. I really enjoyed Palmer’s “Realizing Freedom.”

    3. They sent me a copy, I’ve not gotten round to starting it.

  33. And this is YAL “open support for the ‘militia movement’ and other hard right activity:

    The Associated Press has confirmed a leaked document that describes “supporters of former Presidential Candidate: Ron Paul, Chuck Baldwin, and Bob Barr” as “militia members” and puts us on the same level as domestic terrorists. Very scary times we live in.

    That is literally the full text of the post; the rest is screengrabs of said documents.

    The SPLC being one “of the biggest enemies of our liberty” line is from the comments.

  34. Sounds like some serious busines s to me dude.

    http://www.AnonWonders.tk

  35. BREAKING NEWS: New, Improved Obamacare Program Released on 35 Floppy Disks

    WASHINGTON?Responding to widespread criticism regarding its health care website, the federal government today unveiled its new, improved Obamacare program, which allows Americans to purchase health insurance after installing a software bundle contained on 35 floppy disks. “I have heard the complaints about the existing website, and I can assure you that with this revised system, finding the right health care option for you and your family is as easy as loading 35 floppy disks sequentially into your disk drive and following the onscreen prompts,” President Obama told reporters this morning, explaining that the nearly three dozen 3.5-inch diskettes contain all the data needed for individuals to enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace, while noting that the updated Obamacare software is mouse-compatible and requires a 386 Pentium processor with at least 8 MB of system RAM to function properly.
    […]
    Obama added that the federal government hopes to have a six?CD-ROM version of the program available by 2016.

    1. Haha that’s perfect. Good to see the onion not playing that retarded “Obamas just too darn smart for us Americans” bullshit they tend to.

      1. No, they’re playing this the way they always do: “follow the crowd”. Only now that public opinion is against the tech rollout, are they making jokes about it.

    2. Hey, I want mine on reel-to-reel!

    3. It’sa good thing they released it on the 3.5 format because my 5-1/4 doesn’t read sectors that well any more.

      1. “OPEN 1,8,15,”V0”: CLOSE 1″…

    4. Sounds like my first copy of OS/2. The difference being that OS/2 actually worked…

  36. Any sort of opposition to the Total State is anarchist nihilism. Why do you think they called Boehner, Romney and the Tea Party those names?

    Also this makes those who believe this stuff totalitarians.

    1. And the GLBT crowd was calling us teabaggers.

  37. Washington Post reports that nation appears to be more libertarian/conservative than ever, proceeds to show basic ignorance of historical facts.

    The first question, reported in the left panel of the figure below, asked whether the government in Washington should see to it that every person has a job and a good standard of living or whether the government should let each person get ahead on their own. The fact that the solid dots (2002) are to the right of the hollow dots (1964) supports the view that all regions of the country became more conservative. Interestingly, in 1964, the South appears to have been the most supportive of the liberal response (the government should ensure a job and a good standard of living). The second question, reported in the right panel, asked whether or not the government in Washington was getting too powerful. Across all regions, we again see opinion has shifted to the right.

    Really, WAPO? You mean the part of the country that was most heavily pro-Roosevelt, voted Democrat for over 100 years, and used the government to oppress racial minorities was in favor of a powerful government?

    No way.

  38. “opposes all gun control laws and public healthcare, supported the government shutdown, dismisses public education, opposes organized labor, favors the end of Social Security as we know it, and argues in its formal political manifesto that “we should eliminate the entire social welfare system” while supporting “unrestricted competition among banks and depository institutions of all types.”

    Heh! These are exactly the reasons why I’m a Libertarian! But the dupes are so far out in left field that Liberty looks “right-wing” to them.

  39. lol Vikings.

    1. I’m not going to sugarcoat it: the Vikings need to put own Browns uniforms so they can let Eli Manning down one more time by coming back and winning the game.

      1. I thought the Ravens were the Browns dressed in purple.

  40. BTW, just to parse the guy’s comment:
    ‘I value my liberties at such a low priority that I’ll let my mis-informed ideology trump them’.
    He deserves the lack of liberties he gets, I don’t.

  41. OT: Just read this comment at a nuclear blog site I frequent.

    seth
    October 21, 2013 at 5:42 PM
    Remember that the UK is run by a incompetent fascist government with home grown nuke power destroyed by successive Fascist governments starting with Thatcher.

    Swiss bankers are skittish about nukes after the Krauts condemned tens of thousands of citizens annually to horrible deaths replacing its nuke plants with coal without compensation for the nuke providers, solely to gain Green party political support.

    Note that Areva in the China will have finished next year the same first of kind EPR plants proposed for England at a a cost of $3B/GW, the same cost Areva quoted for Ontario in 2009, and a third the cost assumed for Hinkley. First of kind AP1000 nukes will be finished next year in China as well at the same cost which works out to 3 cents a kwh.

    In the US the VC Summer AP1000 nuke project is 50% complete, at cost of $4.5B /Gw 4 cents a kwh if built by public power operator TVA or 7 cents a kwh in the hands of its private operator with higher finance cost. That 7 cents is lower than the 8 cents gas costs despite its current price at less than half the cost of production.

    Continued..

  42. All 7 Candu’s built in the decade to 2007 were built at $2B/GW on time and on budget as where all Japanese ABWR’s in that timeframe.

    There are hundreds of nukes under construction and engineering stages at costs consistent with those above.

    A publicly owned and operated revival in England ? the pre Thatcher Central Generation utility like Hydro Quebec ? would build nuclear plants at a third the cost per KWh as the Fascist strike deal. Between idiotic austerian economics and third world industrial capabilty the UK voter is getting the well deserved shaft for its support of fascist governance.

    Western European nuke construction is an outlier.

    1. Wow. That’s some top notch crazy. It’s like Infowars.

    2. Wow. That comment is especially hilarious because the rest of that thread is lucid shop-talk about nuclear power. That insanity comes out of absolutely nowhere.

      1. I was reading through and came upon that. He really went on a rant rooted around Thatcher being a fascist that has caused the UK every problem ever. I wonder what his definition of fascist is if he believes that the current people running the country are less fascist than Thatcher?

  43. Sounds like a great vaudeville act. The kid could fill a whole 8 minutes pushing rope.

  44. OT: Former cop DOESN’T shoot dog, gets arrested and hauled into court for it

    Having worked in Carmel for a few years, it’s well known that the cops are asses about stupid stuff. You either need a big bank account or some pictures of the mayor in a compromising position to get in the good favor of a Carmel cop.

    1. We’re described as one of the more livable cities in the U.S. T

      That’s snow. On the ground. In October. There’s nothing livable about that. Case closed.

      The sergeant made out a summons and handed it to me. Then he snarled, “If I have any more trouble out of you, I’ll have your license to carry a handgun revoked and I’ll be back here to confiscate your guns.”

      How could ANY law enforcement agency employ a man like this? I was flabbergasted. His arrogance, his lack of good judgment, his contemptuous attitude were all intolerable in a professional lawman.

      Sound like pretty standard fare to me. Promotions all around.

      1. That’s snow. On the ground. In October. There’s nothing livable about that. Case closed.

        it’s gotta be an old pic. They haven’t even gotten a hard freeze yet this year.

        1. They haven’t even gotten a hard freeze yet this year.

          They have in the northern part of the state, but I don’t think they have had snow yet. Indiana has an extremely shitty climate in most of the state. Anything north of Indy is a bleak and barren tundra that is livened up only by green corn fields in the summer.

      2. That’s snow. On the ground. In October. There’s nothing livable about that. Case closed.

        Indy is in the warmer part of the state. Once you get north of Muncie, it’s a frozen waste land that gets a few warm days in the summer where you are at risk of getting blown off the face of the planet by a tornado if you are indoors, and will get eaten by bloodthirsty swarms of mosquitos if you dare go outside. It’s quite a lovely place.

      3. As a Canadian with no snow on the ground, I laugh at you.

    2. I retained an attorney. He listened to my tale of woe and was in no way surprised. He was well aware of the reputation of the Carmel Police Department and informed me that he had instructed his own children to avoid any contact with its officers. They were never to even approach them for help.

      White, middle class Americans telling their kids to stay the fuck away from the po-po. Awesome country we live in.

  45. The Path to NSA Reform, at 10:25 in this video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgBhaFeR2bE

  46. Salon is populated by people who can turn a phrase and have a surface and rigid ideology.
    I’d shoot this fuck.

    1. http://www.slate.com/articles/…..hing.html#

      Yes, phrases like “Canada has death panels, and that’s a good thing”

  47. Go home NBC, you’re drunk.

  48. Breast-feeding Missouri mother charged with contempt of court

    A breastfeeding Missouri mother has been charged with contempt of court after refusing to leave her son behind for jury duty.

    Laura Trickle, who says her 7-month-old son doesn’t take a bottle and has to be with her to eat, has a court hearing set for Thursday. If found in contempt, she could be ordered to pay a fine of up to $500 and even face arrest, The Kansas City Star reported ( http://bit.ly/1i4lamS ).

    Trickle, who lives in Lee’s Summit, a Kansas City suburb, first received a jury duty notice in January but received a postponement because she was pregnant. She informed court officials she was breastfeeding when she received another summons in August, though she was told she must report to court and find a caregiver for her son.

    But when she showed up in September, she brought along her son, Axel, hoping the judge would grant an exemption. Instead she received a court order saying she “willfully and contemptuously appeared for jury service with her child and no one to care for the child.”

    Jackson County Presiding Judge Marco Roldan declined to discuss Trickle’s case, but he said breastfeeding mothers can pump or nurse on breaks or bring someone along to care for their children when serving as jurors.

    Rulez are rulez!

    1. Charge this judge with Contempt of Public and get a rope.

  49. IT’S (probably not) TEBOW TIME!

    Tim Tebow to the Rams is a possibility after St. Louis starter Sam Bradford was injured Sunday.

    Tebow, the former Florida Gators star who led Denver to a playoff win but has struggled to prove he can lead a NFL offense, has been idle since he was cut by the Patriots during the preseason. Tebow’s best shot at returning to the NFL was always injuries depleting rosters during the season.

    The Rams were the first to suffer a major quarterback loss, reportedly putting the possibility of signing Tebow in play.

    Bradford suffered a season-ending torn ACL Sunday, according to a variety of media outlets. The Rams lost 30-15 to Panthers, dropping to 3-4 this season.

    The only other quarterback on the Rams’ roster is Kellen Clemens, a former Oregon signal caller who has started 12 games during his eight-year NFL career. His last start was in 2011.

    A Rams source told NFL media columnist Michael Silver Bradford’s injury triggered talk of adding Tebow to the St. Louis roster. However, Silver reported it is unlikely the Rams will ultimately sign Tebow.

    At this point what do the Jags, Browns, or Rams have to lose?

    1. also available: Vince Young

      1. So is Matt Flynn. He has the mobility of a three toed sloth.

    2. As as Rams fan, I say give Tebow a chance.

      Is he a good QB? Not really. But we know Kellen Clemens isn’t one.

      Tebow has thrown 17 TDs and 9 interceptions in his career.

      Clemens has thrown 7 TDs and 13 Ints in his career.

      Yet which one has a job for life with the Rams, apparently?

  50. Slate? Pravda?
    Slavda.
    Just a character and a letter from “slave.”
    Do dictatorships put out bids for Information Minister?
    Slate and MSNBC are going to do some cunt-scratching for bucks.

    1. Dunning-Kruger effect was ripe for just showing a picture of Obama.

      Lethologica could have had Obama giving a speech, any speech. Especially one of his paradigm-shifting speech, speeches.

  51. Talk about nut jobs, what do you call a person who claims to support 4th Amendment rights, does nothing to fight domestic spying, arrogantly criticizes those willing to fight, and then locks arms with Democrats who created, hid, and continue to lie about the surveillance state? How about a mainstream hypocrite who secretly supports the surveillance state, and every other form of government control and growth. This guy has never seen another person’s dollar he did not want to take and use to make government bigger and stronger, thumping his chest like a goon with each hellfire missile the President fires at Innocent people, every dollar he gives to his rich cronies, and every minimum wage part time job “created” by progressive policies. For Watson, high morality is taking what others have earned and giving it to his chosen causes. In fact he loves everything about using the threat of violence, or violence itself, to take from the productive. It is a sick thug mentality that gave GM, Banks, all the favored cronies record profits while the average person suffers. This is who Watson is. A supporter of the power establishment elite and the wealthy. In this context, his call to stunt the fight against his beloved government’s pervasive spying makes perfect sense.

    1. I think you nailed it nicely.

    2. Damn, that was a mallet to the spike. Nailed.

    3. What do i call him? I call him part of the problem.

      -jcr

  52. How’s that “liberaltarian fusion” thing workin’ for ya?

  53. Watson’s real objection to the rally is that he can’t stand anyone declining to worship the teleprompter-in-chief.

    -jcr

    1. The fa?ade is wearing thin with his kind, and middle America is getting a good glimpse of what lies beneath… Yes, my cup is half full.

  54. It’s a sad fact of human nature that all that is required for one group to hate a different group…is for that different group to exist. Over time, every member of both opposed groups comes to believe that the other side is consorting with demons, are the vilest of evil and like to torture fluffy bunnies to death.

    Any good ideas either side has are dismissed by the other side, and eventually declared to be examples of how evil the other side truly is. And so you have people who ought to be natural allies if placed in the same group consider each other’s ideals to be the deepest heresy.

    This is how you get two groups who both claim to want freedom waging war on each other, destroying the freedoms both support in the name of fighting ‘evil’.

  55. “Cuz progressives don’t really mean it when they go all control-y, but libertarians secretly do because Hayek hearted Pinochet. ”

    Cause it’s not like Progressives ever hearted any unsavory characters. Cough cough Pol Pot cough Lenin cough Mao COUGH Stalin.

  56. This seems to ‘bury the lede.’ Dozens of major liberal and progressive groups are joining with many libertarian groups to take a stand against the surveillance state, but the focus here is on one whiny ‘social democrat’ journalist who thinks this should not be a joint effort. The latter is focused on, while the far more important former is ignored, and is then taken by many commenters here as proof that liberals and libertarians can never really work together on anything, which, again, is ironic since what the journalist is whining about is the fact that major liberal and libertarian groups ARE working together on this.

    I hope that the rally is a huge success.

    1. Nobody questions that “liberals” and libertarians can make common cause on specific issues, just like libertarians and traditional conservatives have common positions on certain other issues.

      But I remember a lot of talk about “liberaltarians” during the George W. Bush days that ended very, very quickly once Team Blue took over. And liberals who once spoke favorably about libertarians now vilify libertarianism in Watson-like terms.

      Making common cause on specific issues should not be mistaken for lasting alliances.

      1. I agree on your last statement. Liberals are not libertarians. Neither are conservatives, for that matter. We should work with any group when it advances what we believe, without losing site that on the next issue we may not be able to find common ground with the same people. I do not think conservatives or even the Tea Party are libertarians, but if they are having an anti-spending rally I will be there if I can, and the same goes for liberals or even ‘progs’ in the (admittedly few and far between) events we might share.

        1. “I do not think conservatives or even the Tea Party are libertarians…and the same goes for liberals or even ‘progs’ in the (admittedly few and far between) events we might share.”

          Okay. So, how many people move from progressive to libertarian? Honestly, I just don’t see it happen much at all. Conservatives, on the other hand, I see migrate to libertarianism on a regular basis. If your equivalence were accurate, you’d expect to see it happen roughly equally on both sides. It just doesn’t seem to match reality, however.

      2. “liberals” and libertarians can make common cause on specific issues, just like libertarians and traditional conservatives have common positions on certain other issues.

        ..except for that nasty habit the left- and right-wingers have of betraying what they claim to care about, sure.

        -jcr

  57. an ideology that uses its few positive civil liberties positions as a predator uses candy with a child.

    What, no hat tip? Fucker.

  58. Weren’t the “social democrats” the same people who a week ago were demanding that Republicans put their “partisan” beliefs aside and “reach across the aisle” in a “bipartisan” fashion for the “common good?”

  59. Some of the biggest names in civil liberties and digital freedom of information will be there, including the ACLU, Electronic Frontier Foundation, FreePress and FreedomWorks.

    So the writer, who works for of all things Forbes*, goes off on libertarians and totally misses the “astroturfed-teabagger” element at the rally?

    We’ve been trolled

    *The motto of Forbes magazine is “The Capitalist Tool”.

  60. Given that the Obama administration has been responsible for NSA spying for half a dozen years now, despite campaign promises to end it, it isn’t clear to me why we should welcome Democrats at such a rally.

    Watson is right: the rally is “fatally infected”, namely by supporters of the guy responsible for the spying, president Obama.

  61. Later, Watson goes on to describe libertarians as really authoritarian because “it’s always about the man on the balcony” whatever the fuck that means.

    Because we’re trying to “impose” liberty on people. Freedom is slavery, afterall. /Tony

    Actually, I we may have finally discovered Tony’s true identity. It’s this douche.

  62. Salon is so swimming in progressive-lefty self-stroking moral-narcissism to begin with that Tom Watson’s libertarian-boogeyman fantasies are like a light side-order to the main course of screaming fucking stupid.

    A ‘slide show’ on the same page as the article features links to some REALLY insightful material to get your proggy-dander up. Examples =

    “The most racially tone-deaf casting decisions ever
    1 – “Black Hawk Down”

    The Somalia-set military thriller features no Somali actors — odd, given that it depicts a military action against the government of that nation. Two Somali characters were played by British performers, and a third was portrayed by a Nigerian actor.”

    Yes. Because when we depict an incident in which Somalis mutilate American soldiers, then American soldiers get into a firefight with them and shoot like 1000 of them, who are all fucked up on Khat and using women as human shieds? YOU REALLY WANT TO ENSURE THEY GET A CHANCE TO DEPICT THEMSELVES FAIRLY. [Insert DERP here]

    sidebar! BTW – You Might Also Like

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  63. (SALON AWESOMENESS CONTINUES)

    – MORE RACISMS IN TEH FILMS

    “Cloud Atlas”

    …there was something extremely discomfiting about seeing white actors portray Korean characters (that picture’s of Jim Sturgess, a British actor), or Korean actors portray whites, or…

    OK we get the idea

    “Iron Man 3”

    Ben Kingsley, the British actor who once won an Oscar for playing Mahatma Gandhi (*NOTE = WHICH IS THE *GOOD* KIND OF PATRONIZING RACISM!), played the Mandarin, a supervillain who’s portrayed in the Iron Man comics as Chinese. The movie changed his origin around but didn’t change the Orientalist visual signifiers all over him.

    “Orientalist” Yuh Think? A guy called ‘The Mandarin’? Visual ‘signifiers’? You mean the FUCKING CHINESE COSTUME? The sophistimication of these illiterarii is astounderp.

    “The Lone Ranger”

    Johnny Depp, who has said that he believes he’s part-Native American, (*and sometimes believing is all we have) played the role of Tonto in this year’s “Lone Ranger” remake — a role played by a Native American actor on television (*OH SHIT ITS ON!!). Depp may be part-Native American, but he’s white, too, and…. (USE YOUR FUCKING IMAGINATION AT THIS POINT)

  64. (MORE = “WHITE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND RACISM IN FILM!”)

    “Memoirs of a Geisha”

    This film, depicting Japanese culture and tradition, starred two Chinese actresses and a Malaysian actress. Perhaps the differences between Asian cultures were lost on the director, *American* Rob Marshall

    I think this has to rival the “Why no Somalis in BHD”? for utterly contrived controversy. Perhaps the journo here forgets that ‘Memoirs’ was in fact written by an American male, and that the ()*@#$ Japanese press panned it as an ahistorical bullshit American fantasy novel Whoops.

    “Selena”

    This film engendered some protest early on for having cast Jennifer Lopez, a Puerto Rican actress, as one of the most iconic Mexican stars ever, though it ended up working out in some ways — she was nominated for a Golden Globe and was, for a time, the most prominent Latina actress out there

    BUT WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO BE MORALLY INDIGNANT ABOUT?! I IS CONFUSED. Is it good? Do I root for J-lo or call her race-traitor?

    and the winner… of The most racially tone-deaf casting decisions ever, IS

    “United 93”

    Omar Berdouni, who played one of the Saudi hijackers who presumably tried to destroy the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 11, 2001, is in fact a British-Moroccan actor

    That’s right people = there must have been *SAUDIS LINED UP AROUND THE CORNER BEGGING FOR *THAT ROLE*

    1. MORE AWESOME SALON TEASER-HEADLINES =

      “Right-wing pastor: Girl Scouts are wicked and their cookies promote lesbianism “

      “Googling “Feminists should” yields really scary search results ”

      “‘Keystone XL pipeline could land Koch brothers $100 billion in profits “”

      &@BILLIONS!!!! TEH KOCHS WHAT???)(!@#*$()!@$#*(

      Shit I actually want to read that. How is that even *possible*? The thing I find most hilarious about the idea….

      … is the fuckin’ thing really even THAT profitable?? if it is… then what the hell is anyone opposing it for!? I mean, what = $100bn?? BRING IT ON!

      Oh, the actual ‘article’ is just a link to a ‘blog post’ which links to a ‘study’.

      Oh, and the ‘study’ is a hoot. With charts showing relative Evil of the worlds Rich People.

      http://kochcash.org/wp-content…..Report.pdf

      Jesus, Salon puts up a gigantic headline? and the “article” is less substantive than…. Reason 24/7? (runs and hides)

      1. “Googling “Feminists should” yields really scary search results ”

        I’ll go with ‘double fist themselves out of human existence’ to add more scare to the search results.

    2. This film engendered some protest early on for having cast Jennifer Lopez, a Puerto Rican actress, as one of the most iconic Mexican stars ever, though it ended up working out in some ways — she was nominated for a Golden Globe and was, for a time, the most prominent Latina actress out there.

      Good lord, that is dumb, and insulting. It would be like bitching about Ryan Reynolds playing an American roll.

      1. It would be like bitching about Ryan Reynolds playing an American roll.

        Kaiser Roll, or Sourdough? POPPY SEEDS? There are a host of signifiers to take into consideration here, mr Anglocentrist-Baker

      2. …The winner for me is how Salon *expresses indignation* over the fact that “Saudis were not better encouraged to Depict Themselves as the 9/11 Terrorists in a film remake… because…. of fairness….or ethnocentrism… or something. Its ‘racially tone-deaf’, at least!

        I would love to have a counterpoint comment offered by a Saudi Wahabbist, to the tune of, “The Jews Who Run Salon Are Pigs And Donkeys and Drink the Blood of Children”

        Oh, and don’t forget = its the “*Alleged*” Saudi terrorists on flight 93! (I can’t believe they included that – because ‘hey, hijacking a plane on the *same day* as the other 9/11 terrorists? DONT JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS! could be complete coincidence…)

        Salon = the greatest Progressive Self-Parody experiment of ALL TIME

  65. I used to read Salon a long time ago, but idiots like him are the reason I stopped. It looks like the correct “progressive” stance is pants down and bent over in an inviting stance for your government rather than risk rubbing shoulders with someone you disagree with.

  66. There seems to be a concerted effort to drive wedges between libertarians and liberals, progressives, and those further left, when they share the same view on important issues, such as NSA surveillance. On leftie sites, hardly a week goes by without an attack like Watson’s. It is not hard to figure out whose interests the wedge-driving would serve. I am left wondering whether it is volunteered or paid for. Maybe someone should investigate.

    1. No offense, Anarcissie, but I genuinely believe you’re not thinking through your premises. If the government is okay to demand your compliance on “economic” issues, why can’t they use surveillance to ensure compliance. And if they’re okay to monitor you on economic issues, why would they be wrong to do so to catch people who might use violence to push society in the “wrong” direction?

      1. The Anti-Statist Left does not exist. A hologram was developed during the Bush years for a few public appearances but it has been lost to the tides of history.

  67. Actually, as offensive as Wastson’s comments sound, he’s actually more right than he realizes. If he believes in social democracy, well, on first premises, he’s got damned little to complain about with regard to surveillance. If he believes the individual exists at the service of the will of the majority (as a social democrat must), then the argument that the majority doesn’t have a right and even an obligation to monitor his or her behavior to ensure compliance doesn’t make much sense.

  68. Ah, Pinochet. He killed some commies but clearly not enough. I actually endorse this fellow’s Bill of Horribles, foremost its listing of opposition to so-called public education. Ahem…. they are graduating ILLITERATES and to an even greater degree, INNUMERATES! They even send these poor deprived teens to college where they must learn ten years of grammar school in ten weeks. Yeah, it’s those mean old you-know-whats messing up our Utopia.

  69. NSA propagandist Watson is the reincarnation of a Nazi death-camp guard who would rather watch millions die rather than question the motives of the Reich.

  70. Has anybody looked up his condemnation of the anti Iraq war protests because they were sponsored by International ANSWER? I’m sure it was riveting.

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  73. This is exactly the stance we on the Right must adopt – no collaboration with the stalinists.

  74. I consider myself a member of the opposition, and I believe left and right opposition factions must unite. As such, its fascinating to see rejections of this same article from both left and right. Here’s the rejection from the left to mirror the reasonable and logical rejection of this sort of thinking found here.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/20…..contagion/

    Remember, divided, we will fall and fail.

  75. Since I believe that we must form a broad coalition to defeat our powerful common foe, I am struck by the number of people on both sides of the left-right divide who seem to work very hard to make sure that never happens. Most I’m sure are just misguided, but with the way governments and PR firms openly say they aim to shape and guide opinion, I also wonder how much of this is deliberate and designed to make sure the opponents who want change never unite.

    Currently, I see a powerless left and a powerless libertarian movement. Neither is able to create change. Each seems to get about 1-2% of the vote in our winner-take-all elections. Both groups are opposed to exactly the same enemy and most of the same policies. But, most seem to want to attack each other rather than the common foe.

    Which of course is silly. If the people who want change spend their time and energy attacking each other, then of course no change will occur. Obama and Dubya I’m sure both laugh at this. It would make far more sense to spent our time attacking our common and powerful foe, and at least agree not to spend our energy shooting at the people who also want to defeat that foe.

    Of course, America is in the state its in today largely because the American citizenry hasn’t done anything that makes sense for a long, long, time.

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