Monday, February 28, 2005
Every constitutional scholar recognizes that the Framers composed the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution as a reaction to the tyranny imposed on their longstanding fundamental inalienable rights, both as individual persons and as states. Much of the contemporaneous commentary regarding the second amendment involves the Framers' contention that the rights of the individual were above those of the State or of the United States.
Opponents of gun ownership would have us believe that the second amendment refers not to individual citizens, but to a militia, which, in present context, means each State's National Guard. Note, however, that Madison's original draft of the second amendment states "The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well-armed and well-regulated militia being the best security of a free country." Both the original and final texts of the second amendment are conspicuous in their lack of use of the word “state” when indicating who has the right to keep and bear those arms. In the order of rights, the Framers were clear: individual rights are primary, state’s rights are secondary, and the group of states (aka the United States) come last. Everything is permissible for individuals, as long as they don’t infringe on the rights of other individuals. Everything is permissible for the State, as long as it doesn’t infringe upon the rights of individuals or other states, singly or as the United States.
Here are a few key quotes:
"What is the militia? It is the whole people . . ." "To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them." George Mason, "Father of the Bill of Rights"
"Laws that forbid the carrying of arms . . . disarm those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes . . . Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man." - Thomas Jefferson's Commonplace Book, 1774-1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment (1764) by criminologist Cesare Beccaria
"The right of a citizen to keep and bear arms has justly been considered the palladium of the liberties of the republic, since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary powers of rulers, and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them." - Joseph Story, 1833 - U.S. Supreme Court Justice
So let's put this in contemporary context. I'm quite sure that my local police will not be able to protect me in the most likely scenario that would threaten the lives of me and my family - an armed intruder. Therefore, I arm myself. As a law-abiding citizen, is it the state or federal government's role to determine how I should protect myself and my family? The State of Oregon has determined, thus far, that I am not permitted to own a fully-automatic firearm. I comply with that, not only because I am not a criminal, but also for practical reasons: full-auto wastes ammunition and limits accuracy.
But what are the other scenarios where I might need to protect the lives of me and my family? Maybe a group of armed intruders will break in to my home. Maybe several representatives of a governmental entity will want to unlawfully enter my home. Maybe a pack of wild dogs will invade the neighborhood. Who can tell, really? Deadly threats wouldn’t be so deadly if we could predict exactly what they were going to be. Any person that has been attacked by an armed assailant, or any person that was watching TV on September 11, 2001, should be aware of that. If, during an invasion of my home, I’m not that good of a shot (which is pretty likely in the middle of the night), I’ll go through a 10 shot magazine pretty quickly. And as I take 5 seconds to put in another magazine, or 1 minute to reload a magazine, three innocent people end up dead.
Such rhetoric might sound paranoid and unrealistic to some. However, there are certain givens about being human. Bad things happen. Bad people will do bad things, and it is incumbent upon good people to sometimes do bad things to bad people in order to prevent those bad people from doing bad things. I am absolutely convinced that criminals will find a way to acquire the most deadly weapons they can get. This goes for the local gang-banger as much as it goes for the local al Qaeda cell. Tyranny can happen on any level, from a single individual to an entire society.
We urban-dwellers have become too detached from the essence of our existence – self-determination. People live in groups because we provide mutual assistance and benefits to each other in many ways. But at our most basic level, as individuals, we have inalienable rights, including the right to exist, and live according to our own choosing. People living “in the middle of nowhere” typically own guns, and for a very good reason – they have an intimate understanding of the value of self-determination, self-reliance, and self-protection. Must those values lose relevance in the big city?
I guess it’s time for me to send in that NRA membership application. And begrudgingly obtain my concealed handgun permit.
It is also worthy to note that, as a citizen of Oregon, I feel it is my duty to make my feelings on this issue known to my State representatives. However, the current Leftist-ruled political and social climate causes me to think twice about making my real identity known. No matter how whacky it is, there are those around me that would suddenly think me to be some kind of "gun nut" for desiring to preserve my right to own a semi-automatic rifle. To those people, I pose this question: what stops a criminal from using, or continuing to use, a semi-automatic rifle? Answer: a law-abiding citizen with a semi-automatic rifle that knows how to use it well.
UPDATE:02.27.05:15:45 - Mr.Atos
This is a Comprehensive Weapons Ban for the State of Oregon. It includes a massive list of banned guns. It also outlaws magazines larger than ten rounds and requires a police issued "permit" to continue to possess the semi-auto rifles and shot guns you already own and bans "transfer" of the listed firearms even to your children. Others new anti- gun bills are listed below:
The Bill is designated SB 927 and includes the comprehensive list of all items to be banned, listed by make and model in its text.
The Bill’s Sponsor is State Senator Ginny Burdick (D-Portland)
Phone: 503-986-1718 Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE., S-317, Salem, OR, 97301 Email
For more Information, contact
Oregon Firearms Federation P.O. Box 556 Canby, OR 97013 Voice: (503) 263-5830
Or read their latest Alert.
The tyrannical nature of fear is the objective of Minority rule. And despite what the Libs think, they are the popular minority in this State... yet with Majority power in government. They have no misgivings about using that power to implement their will and their agenda over the wishes of the population. That is the definition of despotism in my book. Is it any wonder that they want to disarm the electorate?!... and at a time when home invasion and burglary crimes are reaching epidemic proportions in Oregon's urban areas like Portland.
Saturday, February 26, 2005
As Senator Specter is set to make good on his promise to move President Bush's judicial nominees out of Committee and onto the floor for a confirmation vote, he acknowledges that the Democrats, even in the aftermath of popular rejection, clearly intend to return to the racket of filibuster in order to block those nominees from coming before the full Senate for approval (or rejection). Republicans are seriously considering the 'nuclear option' in response to further obstinance. By resorting to the extreme solution of actually changing Senate rules, Republican Senators hope to overcome the procedural tyranny of a political minority. But, this option proves to escalate division and conflict in the Legislative Branch, as Specter acknowledged and The New York Times reiterated:
"The Democratic leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, has said that if the Republicans made good on their threat and ruled filibusters out of order, he would see to it that Senate business came to a halt."Hugh Hewitt has a very comprehensive analysis of the situation at his site. It is likely what brought readers here in the first place. But for others, I strongly encourage review. In the course of the discussion Hugh acknowledges the Minority Leader's intent to go "Gingrich," similar to Newt Gingrich shutting down The House over a budgetary stalemate with Democrats. The challenge for Senate Republicans, as Hugh acknowledges, is how do they react in the face of such threats: "Does the Senate GOP go McClellan or Grant?" Do they back off in cautious retreat from threat, or do they press forward agressively in face of a strong resistance from a full Left onslaught on both political and popular fronts?
Clearly, the options at hand are far from ideal. The responsibilities of statesmanship would tend toward the traditional rules of discourse and debate; confirmation or rejection. Sometimes you get the bear... sometimes the bear gets you, as it were. It is the nature of the game. But no longer in the favor of the bear, the Democrats have resorted to the guerilla tactics of a fringe minority determined to press their will and their agenda in defiance of the principles of Constitutional Democracy. The President is elected by the nation. The President selects judicial nominees per vacancy. The Senate acts in accordance with advise and consent authority, and votes on confirmation. Filtering candidates based on their religious or philosophical principles is well beyond the mandate of Committee members and far exceeds the minority authority. The impasse has been tolerated long enough.
Democrat Senators, personified by Schumer's own words, seek to disqualify from the federal bench, any candidate with "deeply held beliefs." Only in accordance with the warped sensibilities of the Left, would an argument against ideological foundations be worthy of consideration when debating the qualification of individuals. It is an anathema to American tradition in any situation (See Article VI, Section III), and is especially ludicrous when qualifying the competency of those asked to rule on the fundamental manifest of Constitutional authority intersecting the nature of Man. On what basis does one make such decisions of interpretation and intent if not according to the fundamentals of philosophy? - be they religious, secular, scientific, or otherwise ideological . The prerequisite should be a conviction held in favor of something... rather than the rejection of everything. True objectivity begins with acknowledgement of truth.
In the contemporary era, the Left has discarded truth in favor dogmatic consensus. Principles are established on the basis of pragmatic convenience and political advantage. Concepts are rendered by situational imperatives, contradictions are ignored, and precepts never existed. The Left has established its own religion - a doctrine of moral relativism. The Democrat party has embraced a position that is so far Left that anyone that does not adhere religiously to their agendas, is unworthy of consideration bordering on criminality in their eyes if not yet their words (Ward Churchill's rhetoric, notwithstanding). Is it any wonder that a candidate right of center would render the label of 'ideological extremist' from those shamans of secular humanism like Ralph Neas, Erwin Chemerinsky or Noam Chomsky who themselves reside on the plutonian fringe of Western sensibility. Schumer, Leahy, Kennedy, Boxer, Clinton and Reid aspire to a similar orbit, hoping the Nation will continue in its naive tolerance of bad ideas to accept their version of progressive relativism imposed and maintained by judicial tyranny.
Reid wants to exercise his own nuclear option by bringing the Senate to a halt if Republicans neutralize his racket. He must be confident in the Democrat's ability to win a propaganda campaign waged among the popular perception. Indeed, Democrats still maintain the arsenal of MSM daggers, Hollywood brothels, University towers, Union thugs, and NeoRadical rage. But, they unleashed all of that before and were vanquished. What drives them now if not fear? The vale of determination conceals a visage of desperation on the face of the Democrat leadership and their Leftist zealots. They sit besieged together in their river fortress eating sawdust sandwiches and rat fillet on the verge of unconditional subduction while their expeditionary forces linger on the frontier of chaos primed for debased aggression. It is time to finish this struggle - eliminate the radicals (from the political field) and finally rebuild friend from foe on the ground of common principle of a Nation of Men devoted to objective truth over pragmatic dogma.
The fundamental definitions of the relationship between Men and their government is at stake for the future of this free Republic... right here and now. What's Right commands the field for the moment, but history is repleat with moments of change and tragic reversals. Popular achievements and legislative victories are rendered irrelevent by judicial milestones of precedent. Democrats know what is at stake, and mean to hold their last piece of ground along the Left edge of their flat Earth. By all means, do let's grant the Left the fight they have been picking and finish this struggle with irrational lunacy once and for all.
O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth,
That I am meek and gentle with these butchers!
Thou art the ruins of the noblest man
That ever lived in the tide of times.
Woe to the hand that shed this costly blood!
Over thy wounds now do I prophesy,--
Which, like dumb mouths, do ope their ruby lips,
To beg the voice and utterance of my tongue--
A curse shall light upon the limbs of men;
Domestic fury and fierce civil strife
Shall cumber all the parts of Italy;
Blood and destruction shall be so in use
And dreadful objects so familiar
That mothers shall but smile when they behold
Their infants quarter'd with the hands of war;
All pity choked with custom of fell deeds:
And Caesar's spirit, ranging for revenge,
With Ate by his side come hot from hell,
Shall in these confines with a monarch's voice
Cry 'Havoc,' and let slip the dogs of war;
That this foul deed shall smell above the earth
With carrion men, groaning for burial.
(Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, Act iii, Scene i)
In other words.. Bring It On!
Symposium attendees... MoltenThought, SmoothingPlane, TheBlueStateConservatives, MrFrugal, SonsoftheRepublic, AceofTrump, NewFederalistPapers, Lincoln's Boys, TexasTommy, TheMeltingPot, TheManifesto, OkieOnTheLaminLA, CakeorDeath, Blogotional, TeacherJoeinLA, RandomRantsandReferences, EverydayPeople, HardStarboard, Roughstock, Brainpost, CheatSeekingMissiles, YesBlog, Blogodocio, BlogofAllegiance, PubliusForum, ConservativeThoughtsFromBunny'sMindsEye, ResidualForce, OneClearCall, Americanian, XBIP, SpinningClay, BirdofParadise, TaxableTalk, AtTheHundredthMeridian, LittleRedBlog, SplendorofTruth, RightMom, Lenderama, MythusmageOpines, MatthewMaynard, OpaqueLucidity, DailyKos, Kyzylkum, BunkerBustingBunnies, Carreterus Linnaeas, ViewFromAHeight, BrownFamilyZoo, GoodandEvilNews, MyDogsAreSmarter, CriWulf, MountVirtus, WagonBoysGarage, SociallyConservative, KickingOverMyTraces, SonsOfTheRepublic, NotesInSamsara, PoorCountryBoy, RedfordOutpost, TheRegulator, TheLarsonian, TheNewFederalistPapers, CaliforniaMafia, Egintyrell, DaytonKennedy, ScreamingDiatribe, HolyCoast, MDVOutlook, GrabAByte, MarkA.Kilner, BrokenGString, FromLAToElDorado, TheBantyRooster, LexELibertas, PoliticalFan, Slublog, GregsTruth, RedStateRant, AsTheTopoftheWorldTurns, Pekin Prattles, and of course, our host... Hugh Hewitt.
Great job everyone! Tremendous kudos to Teflon at MoltenThought for essentially acting as moderator for the discussion. Welcome all newcomers visiting with MySandmen. Have a look around, and please sample the archives. We've been up for six months, but we're just getting started here.
Monday, February 14, 2005
“We are at the dawn of a new age...”
“We are breaking up the vicious tyranny of economic power. We will set men free of the rule of the dollar. We will release our spiritual aims from dependence on the owners of material means. We will liberate our culture from the stranglehold of the profit-chasers. We will build a society dedicated to higher ideals, and we will replace the aristocracy of money by—” ...
“—the aristocracy of pull,” said a voice beyond the group - Ayn Rand
Welcome Hugh Hewitt listeners/readers. Blogging has been rather light as late for a variety of reasons. Home for two weeks with the boys, I have been concentrating on the duties of Mr. Mom. Teaching one to coo and roll, while experiencing the genesis of conversation with another and the challenges of potty training proves to be much more of an endeavor than tracking the foolishness of a Network News Executive and his enablers. It is certainly more endearing as well. In addition, time has come for me to complete the rigors of the NCARB to transcend the final obstacle to professional licensing. Its going to be an interesting year. Between Dueler88 and other Sandmen recruits, we'll try to keep things here interesting. Dueler is a profound analyst and thinker while Badger is a poet cloaked in warrior's prose.
When last I posted, the Eason Jordan issue was poised at the end of one week of deliberate ignorance on the part of Old Busted Media, beginning another. Hugh introduced the story to Chris Matthews and the panel on his Sunday show - the previous Sunday. Howard Kurtz finally broke his silence in the Washington post. Larry Kudlow flirted with the issue on his show and his blog. But, several bloggers and a few Freepers continued a relentless pursuit of the story's details last week, verifying its accuracy and qualifying its implications. Senators Frank and Dodd expressed tardy outrage. If the story had been a test of their political reflexes, they'd be rejected 4F. The story became as much a tale of selective discretion as irrational lunacy. Bravo to Hugh Hewitt, Captain's Quarters, Powerline, Instapundit, Michelle Malkin, the team at Easongate, JayRosen, Jim Geraghty, RogerLSimon, LaShawn Barber, SisypheanMusings, AustinBay, LittleGreenFootballs, and BlankNoOne for his follow-up on the postings at Resonant Information.
Here, over a week later, and Jordan's quiet resignation announcement released in the veritable dead of a Friday evening news cycle preceeding Fat Tuesday, has finally sparked the beginning of a firestorm... with the blogosphere the target of collective indignation on the part of the aristocracy of the annointed: here, here, here, and here (HT's to Hewitt, Easongate, and MichelleM.). Sadly, many see this scandal as a free speech issue with Eason Jordan as the victim of a neo-macarthyan witch hunt, on the part of Conservative bloggers eager to silence dissent. Curiously ignored in that bit of absurdity is the fact that it was bloggers who have for over two weeks been calling for full public disclosure of Eason Jourdan's exchange at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Not only have traditional fingers of the Old Media remained clasped in their collective silence, but even the folks at Davos have refused to release the audio or video recordings of the panel proceedings. Furthermore, few outside the New Media even seem to be curious about the actually statement much less interested in allowing Jordan his moment of free and open disclosure and dissent, by demanding public broadcast. Silence has been imposed by those who wish to shove this issue down the Memory Hole.
In my last post, I made the point that was reiterated on Hugh's show today, that the silence regarding Eason Jordan's statements accusing U.S. soldiers of targeting and torturing journalists in Iraq was, in itself, a conspiracy of sorts. Conspiracy?! Clearly, it is not a concerted effort on the part of diverse members of Western media and the folks at Davos to hide Jordan's scandalous remarks. Rather, their silence is the product of a collective sensibility that simply rejects scrutiny of their credibility. Journalism, like education, bureaucracy, the Arts, environmental and social sciences, ostensibly transcend qualification. That is why I liken them to an aristocracy of sorts. Ayn Rand once described this growing regime of influence as an Aristocracy of Pull whereby achievement, effort and integrity is ultimately replaced by an integrated caste of patronage, dependency, and influence.
In his discussion in Ideas on Liberty, Thomas M. Wilson sums it up this way...
Rather himself hit the tip of an iceberg; and an unavoidably titanic one at that. The shock of witnessing the deposing of one of Media's titans, may have been far too real and intimidating even for folks at the Wall Street Journal. Nevermind the acts of malfeasance that earned Dan the professional guillotine or that Jordan threaded the noose for himself back when he operated as Saddam's personal CNN press agent; concealing atrocities from the world. The annointed should remain beyond reproach and the discrimination of rational judgement, it would seem. But, separating the act of conveying a concept from the public's responsibility to evaluate its precepts undermines the value of discourse itself. The defenders of free speech, on the one hand, desire the right to express themselves without consequence, or question, and without corresponding judgment on the part of the audience, while demanding that audience. On the other hand, those engaged in exercising their fundamental inalienable right, trade in the free market of ideas where desires for exposure and consumption depend on consistency, quality and integrity. Scrutiny and judgment are the mechanisms for success... or failure. Aristocracy was formally and violently deposed in America over 200 years ago. Free markets of speech, like capital, are built not on demands for respect, but on the consent of the genuinely respectful.
In any system that overemphasizes status, personal connections, in fact, become central to day-to-day life. Whom you know and how they regard you become the principal questions. Without other measures of achievement, manipulation is essential.
Public bureaucracies epitomize reliance on status considerations. How ironic it is to apply the term “merit system” to the bureaucracy, where one is seldom rewarded on the basis of merit, accomplishment, or achievement. Those in the “merit system” are those who are never fired, almost cannot be; who are never demoted (and rarely promoted); and are usually given raises on the basis of non-achievement criteria (longevity, seniority, position, and personal connections)...
The temptations of status are difficult to resist. Why struggle to achieve if I can be rewarded for who I am rather than what I do, especially if I can rig the system in my favor? There is no shortage of Americans who want more importance attached to status-based criteria for distributing rewards. Ironically, many of those we call liberals are constantly trying to strengthen status criteria, especially that of group membership. This is usually hidden in the rhetoric of affirmative action programs, “rights” talk, and the like. It finds its way into demands to abolish standardized testing for jobs and academic evaluations, and “gender norming.” Let us, they say, choose those we will reward on the basis of their officially approved status as a member of some group.
Update from dueler88, 16:30 Lima:
You are too kind, Atos. From my point of view, thoughtful analysis is critical in maintaining the "high road" when discussing issues with Leftists. I just call 'em as I see 'em.
The Thomas Wilson quote is good stuff. Too many examples of irony in a "merit system" exist all through society, so many that it has become a sad prerequisite of becoming "successful." One hates to play the game, but must in order to maintain an upward career path. One can only hope that enough genuine relationships based upon true merit and respect start cropping up along the way that one's day-to-day activities maintain a basis in what one does rather than who one knows.
Regarding Mr. Jordan. He can say whatever he wants - as a private citizen. What is at the center of the issue here, though, is denial of any existence of bias. Is it so difficult to understand that EVERYBODY runs information through a personal filter? Surely it must be incumbent upon a journalist to understand that the filter exists in everyone. It is also, then, incumbent upon a journalist to endeaver to overcome this filter, IF one is to maintain objectivity. Most media consumers understand this - the media purveyors are only just coming around to the realization.
The first step to overcoming a problem is recognizing it. That's it, isn't it? The MSM are so addicted to information-based power that they are in denial that biased dissemination of it is a major problem.
Saturday, February 05, 2005
Eason Jordan's inane musings in Davos caused a flurry that has since deteriorated to a full-blown scandal by a conspiracy of silence on this issue (see previous post). Old Busted Media outlets, Two Democrat Senators, Barney Frank and Chris Dodd, and a current professor of public service at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government and director of its Center for Public Leadership, David Gergen, could shed light on this issue. The Senators owe it to the nation that they represent to bring clarity to this matter. Gergen himself, former advisor to President Clinton, moderated the particular discussion at the World Economic Forum. Richard Sambrook, the worldwide director of BBC radio, and a number of other journalists were in attendance from various agencies. And yet, as Hugh Hewitt has pointed out, typing in "Mattis" on any search engine will get one an endless array of links from worldwide media on the United States Marine Corp's General James Mattis' remarks this past week. Likewise, typing in "Eason Jordan"will get nothing concerning Jordan's scandalous accusation. Certainly if CNN shared a more 'fair and balance' approach at objective reporting, they would be eager to resolve this issue with facts rather than spin and obfuscation concerning the comments of a Chief Executive at that news agency. Clearly, the network's evolving reaction to this building story - from emails blaming disenfranchised context to a their weak defense of invective conjecture - makes it clear that they realize a major problem is unfolding for them. Bill Roggio takes CNN to task both in his direct response to their form letter, and on his website, The Fourth Rail. (Excerpt below)
I have suspended citing CNN as a source of material in my weblog, which is viewed by over 1,500 people a day, until I am convinced CNN is honest in getting to the bottom of this story. My readers typically follow the links through on my posts to read my sources. I have copied other bloggers in an attempt to convince them to do the same. Hopefully this will create a noticeable impact on your site hits and give your advertisers pause.Indeed. Perhaps it is time to re-tag the decrepit network with a more appropriate moniker... CNNTN and bring back Rich Hall and Melanie Chartoff to anchor.
Hugh Hewitt has been breaking new ground on this story. His recent email exchange with Rony Abovitz provides interesting clarification and damning confirmation of what Abovitz originally reported from his first-hand account of the WEF Panel discussion. In Hugh's weekly conversation with Chris Wallace, there seemed to be strong interest on the part of the Fox News journalist to bring Jordan's remarks before the panel at Fox News Sunday. Additionally, Hugh plans to alert the panel to the Jordan story during his Sunday appearance on The Chris Matthews Show. Hugh will be interesting. Chris however, is an imbecile... the Betram Scudder of contemporary journalism, to be sure.
Do let's see that video! Over at Sisyphean Musings, Sisyphus has been in contact with Mark Adams, Head of media at the World Economic Forum(Hat Tip: Hewitt and Capt Ed). Mr. Adams has agreed to release a copy of the video of the WEF proceedings and Jordan's comments to him by midweek. We wait to see. Nice work with that boulder, Sir. But, do remember what happens when it gets near the top. One would think any of the major networks could have made a similar request, or that video copies would have been made available for distribution in various formats, else why film it at all. The delay would seem deliberate. Nevertheless, suspicion does not detract from the tremendous effort to further this story and thread clarity through the fog of evasion.
As usual, Ed over at Captain's Quarter's has been plowing a highway through the barb-wire surrounding what he has come to call Eason's Fables. He previews a story from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and expresses growing disappointment with Howard Kurtz in addition to rolling updates.
LaShawnBarber is maintaining what she calls, The Eason Jordan Repository, with links, analysis and a chronology of how Jordan's career perished, taking his network with him. Nice work and definitely worth frequent visits.
As mentioned previously, over at a site called Resonant Information, there is posted a breakdown of some 12 reporters that are said to have been killed as a direct result of U.S. action, providing some verification of Jordan's claim, yet no justification of his charge. The list of some 46 reporters and assistants that have been killed in action in Iraq, is also maintained by Reporters without Borders. It can be viewed here as well with interactive links to each individual and the conditions surrounding there demise. No doubt this will factor to some extent into Mr. Jordan's defense when the swarm finally stings him out of his rabbit hole.
Additional discussions regarding the Jordan story can be linked at KerrySpot, Powerline, GlennReynolds , RogerLSimon, RConversation, RantingProfs, TheBlogFromTheCore, LittleGreenFootballs, TheSundriesShack, Blogotional, Cobb, MyDogsAreSmarter, TheTearsofThings, PekinPrattles, SisypheanMusings, AustinBay, Kausfiles, Solomonia, TigerHawk, OkieontheLam, The Blanket of Silence, Stones Cry Out, Dawn's Early Light, Free Republic, ...
(Thanks Hugh. I started my reading this morning with your listed and added additions)
Sunday will be the final opportunity for the Old Busted Media to set this right. The story of Eason Jordan's scandalous remarks in Davos is already a week old and there has been scant reporting regarding the matter. Another weeklong blackout from the purveyors of information will confirm the irrelevance of an institution that has abandoned its manifest. The OBM is eager to invent controversy where none exists replacing the market for truth with a brothel of rhetoric. The Congressman are no better. Democrat Senators have become expert at bloviating criticisms aimed at the administration, the military, and the Right. Frank's and Dodd's shilling for Jordan via their notable silence in this matter further underscores their own ignominy. Americans deserve better from their second and fourth estates. Jordan's public allegations charging the US Military with targeted assasination and torture of journalists is as absurd as it is unfuriating. But the scandal itself is quickly shifting from the remarks themselves to the silence in their aftermath. Conspiracies are born of concerted intent to conceal or deceive. In this case, it is clear that 'intent' is replaced with commonality of sensibility aimed at the preservation of an aristocracy whereby nobles are never denigrated before the peasantry of common folk. Hence the real problem is not merely the Left's disillusion with America's virtue, their distrust of her power, intolerance for dissent(of them) and disgust for the military, but that in a majority of their institutions, the truth is subordinated to image and agenda.
Wednesday, February 02, 2005
Recently, at the 2005 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, an astounding accusation was made by Eason Jordan, Chief News Executive of CNN. His claim is that the U.S. military is specifically targeting Journalists in the theater of Iraq. The claim was made during a discussion at the WEF titled, "Will Democracy Survive the Media?".
I encourage anyone to follow the link and read Rony Abovitz transcript posted on January 28th at The World Economic Forum Weblog
A few key excerpts are noted below.
The panel included Richard Sambrook, the worldwide director of BBC radio, U.S. Congressman Barney Frank, Abdullah Abdullah, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan, and Eason Jordan, Chief News Executive of CNN. The audience was a mix of journalists, WEF attendees (many from Arab countries), and a US Senator from Connecticut, Chris Dodd...Abovitz makes an important point...
During one of the discussions about the number of journalists killed in the Iraq War, Eason Jordan asserted that he knew of 12 journalists who had not only been killed by US troops in Iraq, but they had in fact been targeted. He repeated the assertion a few times, which seemed to win favor in parts of the audience (the anti-US crowd) and cause great strain on others...
What intensified the problem was the fact that the session was a public forum being taped on camera, in front of an international crowd...
To be fair (and balanced), Eason did backpedal and make a number of statements claiming that he really did not know if what he said was true, and that he did not himself believe it. But when pressed by others, he seemed to waver back and forth between what might have been his beliefs and the realization that he had created a kind of public mess. His statements, his reaction, and the reaction of all in attendance left me perplexed and confused...
I am not really sure what Eason really meant to communicate to us, but I do know that he was quite passionate about it. Members of the audience took away what they wanted to hear, and now they will use it in every vile and twisted way imaginable...
If what Eason originally said was true, exactly what happened and why needs to become known to the American public and world at large. If it is not, it is an example of how "news" is created by the heat of the moment, without any bearing to reality. If it is true, we need to know if it was official or if it was just some random disgruntled soldiers.One might keep in mind that as a Chief Executive of CNN speaking in a public forum regarding the concept of truth, fairness, and balance in the news as it is weighed against corporate profit interest, the need for ratings, and how the media can affect democracy(according to Abovitz), he is representing that News organization - its viewpoints, concerns, contributions, and interests. Is he not? Is CNN currently investigating this story?
Reporters without Borders maintains a list of 46 journalists and media assistants that have been killed since the start of fighting in Iraq in March 2003, while four still missing.
The 31 Journalists are listed as follows
27.05.2004 - Kotaro Ogawa, Nikkan Gendai
27.05.2004 - Shinsuke Hashida, Nikkan Gendai
07.05.2004 - Waldemar Milewicz, TVP
07.05.2004 - Mounir Bouamrane, TVP
19.04.2004 - Assad Kadhim, Al-Iraqiya TV
26.03.2004 - Bourhan Mohammad al-Louhaybi, ABC News
18.03.2004 - Ali Al-Khatib, Al-Arabiya
18.03.2004 - Ali Abdel Aziz, Al-Arabiya
18.03.2004 - Nadia Nasrat, Diyala Television
28.10.2003 - Ahmed Shawkat, Bila Ittijah
17.08.2003 - Mazen Dana, Reuters
02.07.2003 - Ahmad Karim, Kurdistan Satellite TV
08.04.2003 - José Couso, Tele 5
08.04.2003 - Taras Protsyuk, Reuters
08.04.2003 - Tarek Ayoub, Al Jazeera
07.04.2003 - Christian Liebig, Focus
07.04.2003 - Julio Anguita Parrado, El Mundo
04.04.2003 - Michael Kelly, Washington Post
02.04.2003 - Kaveh Golestan, BBC
23.03.2003 - Terry Lloyd, ITV News
22.03.2003 - Paul Moran, Australian Broadcasting Corporation
The Fifteen Assistant are listed as well,
25.08.2004 - Jamal Tawfiq Salmane, Gazeta Wyborcza
29.05.2004 - Mahmoud Ismael Daood, bodyguard, Al-Sabah al-Jadid
29.05.2004 - Samia Abdeljabar, driver, Al-Sabah al-Jadid
27.05.2004 - Unknown, translator
25.05.2004 - Unknown, translator
21.05.2004 - Rachid Hamid Wali, cameraman assistant, Al-Jazira
29.04.2004 - Hussein Saleh, driver, Al-Iraquiya TV
26.03.2004 - Omar Hashim Kamal, translator, Time
18.03.2004 - Majid Rachid, technician, Diyala Television
18.03.2004 - Mohamad Ahmad, security agent, Diyala Television
27.01.2004 - Duraid Isa Mohammed, producer and translator, CNN
27.01.2004 - Yasser Khatab, driver, CNN
07.07.2003 - Jeremy Little, sound engineer, NBC
06.04.2003 - Kamaran Abdurazaq Muhamed, translator, BBC
22.03.2003 - Hussein Othman, translator, ITV News
Currently, RWOB maintains that only two on their list were killed as a result of deliberate action on the part of the US Military and Coalition forces. That organization also maintains the claim that criminal negligence (note: not intent) was involved with the killing of the two journalists.
"Reporters Without Borders called today for the reopening of the enquiry into who was really responsible for the US Army's "criminal negligence" in shooting at the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad on 8 April 2003 and causing the death of two journalists - Ukrainian cameramen Taras Protsyuk (of Reuters news agency) and Spaniard José Couso (of the Spanish TV station Telecinco). "They reiterate their specific accusation with regard to this particular incident,
"The US shelling of the hotel was not a deliberate attack on journalists and the media. It was the result of criminal negligence. "Democracy Now in a story titled, "U.S. Accused of Lying About Its Troops Killing Journalists in Iraq," reports a similar claim regarding the Palestine Hotel.
The shelling of the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad by an American tank, which killed two journalists and injured two others, was an act of "criminal negligence", said a report by an international media watchdog.If the hint of an American atrocity exists, this marginal Anti-American/Anti-Capitalist media group would be charging it. One is left to wonder at the source of CNN's accusations. (edited 020205:08:27)
Captain's Quarters directs readers to a previous scandal surrounding Mr. Jordan's filtering of news out of Pre-War Iraq that hid the truth about Saddam Hussein's atrocities. Capt. Ed goes on to suggest that if Jordan cannot substantiate his claims (incidences that his own News agency has no record of), then this issue could prove worse than Memogate tremor that just rocked CBS.
Gay Patriot links to the Wall Street Journal's Political Diary confirming Abovitz reporting of Eason Jordan's claims.
See also, Powerline, Eutychus Fell, Roger L. Simon, Little Green Footballs, Hugh Hewitt, KerrySpot, OpaqueLucidity, ConservativeContrarian, WindsofChange, Sublog, LaShawnBarber , PrestoPundit , SlingsArrows , RopeJumper , HooDaThunk , RoboRant, WideAwakeCafe , Crosswalk , Blogotional , Larsonian , National Political Observer, Foreign News Observer, FreeRepublic, Resonant Information, Carol Platt-Liebau ...
My own pontifications are pending further consideration...
Do let us look a little more closely at what Mr. Jordan has alleged, when he claims to know (or even suspect) that U.S. troops are targeting and killing journalists in Iraq. Several scenarios can be interpolated:
1. Troops are randomly killing reporters on sight.
2. Troops are shooting specific reporters on sight.
3. Troops have been ordered to shoot specific reporters on sight.
4. Specific reporters are being singled out for termination by the U.S. Military chain of command in Iraq.
5. The U.S. Governmentis systematically assassinating reporters in Iraq.
Is it one (or perhaps several) of these actions to which Mr. Jordan is referring? Each of them has its particular set of dire implications. Any of them would represent an atrocity by which U.S. virtue would be rendered as sanctimony in the eyes of the world on the doorstep of abomination. The matter deserves, as Mr. Abovitz suggests, a complete investigation. But, first it must begin with Eason Jordan's sworn affidavit of testimony to his first-hand knowledge of these assassinations, accompanied by credible evidence of his public charge... Immediately!
Short of any of that, Jordan's outrageous accusation must be publicly redacted, and the Cable News Network held fully accountable for the statements made in a public and international forum by one of it's Chief Executives.
A spurious accusation of this sort can be devastating regardless of it accuracy. As Abovitz notes, once made in the manner it was, the charge could not be erased. Each participant in that forum - both those that cheered, and others that gasped - came away from the exchange with the story that they wanted to hear. And no doubt the legs of this particular tale travelled around the world and into the abatoires of Iraq and the planning rooms of Al Quaeda to the ears of butchers feeding their demonic sensibilities; and the souls of the hopeful seeding their doubt. The truth is still trapped under the bootheel of unsubstantiated allegation worn by a tiny little man with a history of questionable credibility and horrendous judgement regarding 'atrocity.'
Eason Jordan has levelled a very serious accusation of guilt. Now, let him prove it immediately, or forever be utterly discredited along with the Network that he represents. Reporters and executives of their respective 'News' agencies may deny specific geopolitical borders. But, one border surrounding them that they cannot deny is that of truth.
Over at Resonant Information, is posted a breakdown of some 12 reporters that have been seemingly killed as a direct result of U.S. action, providing some verification of Jordan's claim, and no justification of his charge. It is a fair enough analysis, albeit the remainder of conjecture hardly resonates the same quality of information.
Captain's Quarters continues to drive this story with new information. And Carol Platt-Liebau has made significant contributions toward unfolding the truth. (HT: Hugh Hewitt)
Tuesday, February 01, 2005
Matt Drudge is reporting a new tactic on the part of the terrorists in Iraq.
(not actual terrorist demand - image courtesy MySandmen)
He links to an accompanying CNN report.
In Baghdad, Staff Sgt. Nick Minecci of the U.S. military's press office in Baghdad said "no units have reported anyone missing."
The posting, on a Web site that frequently carries militants' statements, included a photo of what that statement said was an American soldier, wearing desert fatigues and seated on a concrete floor with his hands tied behind his back.
The figure in the photo appeared stiff and expressionless.
Liam Cusack, of the toy manufacturer Dragon Models USA, Inc., said the image of the soldier portrayed in the photo bore a striking resemblance to a military action figure made by the company.
In the photo, a gun barrel was pointed at the head of the man's figure, and behind him on the wall was a black banner emblazoned with the Islamic profession of faith, "There is no god but God and Muhammad is His prophet."
A statement posted with the picture suggested the group was holding other soldiers. "Our mujahedeen heroes of Iraq's Jihadi Battalion were able to capture American military man John Adam after killing a number of his comrades and capturing the rest," said the statement, signed by the "Mujahedeen Brigades."
No doubt Ted Kennedy and John Kerry are demanding full withdrawal... of all American toys now.
The humanity! What's next? Pies in their own face?
This situation has become very serious: Powerline, Ace of Spades HQ, Brain Shavings, The Indepundit, Rantburg, Instapundit, Little Green Footballs, RadioBlogger, Free Republic...
CHAPTER 1: WHAT HAPPENED
What happened indeed?! The internet was gradually transformed from a reference novelty to a medium of focused hyperdiscourse at the time that control of traditional avenues of information dissemination had become nearly complete in the hands of Progressive Signal cops. What it did for commercial enterprise in the 90's, the Web was about to do in the dawn of the third millenium for truth. A revolution was unleashed.
In the first Chapter of his latest book, 'Blog: Understanding The Information Reformation That's Changing Your World,' Hugh Hewitt provides a brief, but thorough analysis of the rise of internet blogging from the early sprinkling of virtual diaries to the current maelstrom of intractive neo-journalism. Providing an imperative overview of five key events in the information Reformation, Hugh has secured a milestone in the historic record. His is a first-hand anthropological account of an epic change that permanently transformed a people, their nation, its world, and the course of civilization in ways that can be only guessed at the moment, but will surely clarify in time with full vindication for its disciple of truth.
The significance of the book so far, for this lightweight blogger, is quite profound as the events recorded, formed the environment of inspiration for active participation. The contribution is often rarely apparent save for the occassional, comment, trackback, or even rarer mention. The steady trickle of the counter feeds aspiration, but the motives are bigger than aggrandizement. The desire to be part of history has become available to the bystander who has no excuse to stand by as the pickets file past toward the frontline of reason. A single report fired into the mayhem seems ineffective and unnoticed. But, as one particular shot directed in a volley, the impact can be devastating.
Do I get it? Yes, I think so.
Bravo, Hugh! On to Chapter2.