Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for the ‘truthiness’ Category

Is the U.K. Independent on the reservation?

Posted by Charles II on August 23, 2013

(crossposted with minor revisions at DK)

It’s an odd question, to be sure, but one in response to a very odd event. The Independent is a newspaper that I have traditionally regarded as off the reservation in the very best sense of the term. That is, I have always regarded them as a left-wing newspaper refusing to be marginalized and demanding that issues of importance to the left receive the same attention as those of interest to the rest of the corporate media.

But Glenn Greenwald has published a piece in The Guardian in which he says (to distill it down) that the Independent has published an article which could, perhaps, endanger lives based, according to The Independent, on “documents obtained from the NSA by Edward Snowden” but which, according to Greenwald “clearly did not come from Snowden or any of the journalists with whom he has directly worked.”

For both of those statements to be true, the documents would have to have come from the government based on a list of the documents that Snowden obtained but has not published. They could, for example, have been based on documents supplied from the government based on the (apparently ineffectual) audit of Snowden’s actions or based on decrypts of the materials obtained from Miranda. Once in the public domain, the government could easily use them against Miranda to allege that the materials he has are being used to aid the enemies of Britain.

Greenwald quotes Snowden as saying that:

“It appears that the UK government is now seeking to create an appearance that the Guardian and Washington Post’s disclosures are harmful, and they are doing so by intentionally leaking harmful information to The Independent and attributing it to others.

The Independent’s Oliver Wright has said,

“For the record: The Independent was not leaked or ‘duped’ into publishing today’s front page story by the Government.”

He is receiving a torrent of well-deserved abuse for publishing dodgy material from dodgy sources for dodgy purposes.

______
The relevant phrases from the Independent are these. They either could serve to identify the site and therefore endanger the lives of personnel or provide information about sourcing for the article:

Britain runs a secret internet-monitoring station in the Middle East to intercept and process vast quantities of emails, telephone calls and web traffic on behalf of Western intelligence agencies, The Independent has learnt.

The Independent is not revealing the precise location of the station but information on its activities was contained in the leaked documents obtained from the NSA by Edward Snowden.

installation is regarded as particularly valuable by the British and Americans because it can access submarine cables passing through the region

Many of them came from an internal Wikipedia-style information site called GC-Wiki

The Independent understands that The Guardian agreed to the Government’s request not to publish any material contained in the Snowden documents that could damage national security.

A senior Whitehall source said: “We agreed with The Guardian that our discussions with them would remain confidential”.

It [the intercept station] is part of the surveillance and monitoring system, code-named “Tempora”,

Across three sites, communications – including telephone calls – are tracked both by satellite dishes and by tapping into underwater fibre-optic cables.

The Middle East station was set up under a warrant signed by the then Foreign Secretary David Miliband

Posted in government malfeasance, media, NSA eavesdropping, secrecy, truthiness, wiretapping | 1 Comment »

A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats Out of Context

Posted by MEC on April 6, 2009

Certain “fiscal conservatives” are fond of claiming that President Kennedy would support their obsession with cutting taxes, because President Kennedy after all said that “a rising tide lifts all boats” and that rising tide, as they all know, is the wealth of wealthy people.

There’s a slight problem with that claim. Professor Emeritus Donald Lazere has been looking for an original source for the quotation that supports this interpretation, and can’t find one. The people who are so fond of quoting it, such as President Reagan’s economic guru Arthur Laffer, can’t provide a source.

President Kennedy did actually say, more than once, that “A rising tide lifts all [the] boats.” In the actual documented instances, however, he wasn’t talking about letting the rich get as rich as they can.

“After an extensive library and Internet search (including the data bases of the Kennedy Library and the University of Santa Barbara’s American Presidency Project)”, Professor Lazare cites three speeches:

September 1960, in Cheyenne, Wyoming:

I think that there is a direct relationship between the policy of no new starts in developing our water and power resources, and irrigation and reclamation and conservation, and the fact that our agricultural income has dropped so sharply in the United States in recent years, and the fact that we are using our steel capacity 50 per cent of capacity. Pittsburgh, Wyoming, Montana, Wisconsin are all tied together. A rising tide lifts all the boats. If we are moving ahead here in the West, if we are moving ahead in agriculture, if we are moving ahead in industry, if we have an administration that looks ahead, then the country prospers. But if one section of the country is strangled, if one section of the country is standing still, then sooner or later a dropping tide drops all the boats, whether the boats are in Boston or whether they are in this community.

August 1962, in Pueblo, Colorado:

What I preach is the interdependence of the United States. We are not 50 countries—we are one country of 50 states and one people. And I believe that those programs which make life better for some of our people will make life better for all of our people. A rising tide lifts all the boats. And as Colorado moves ahead, as your steel mill produces, it is benefiting all the people, as they are benefiting you.

October 1963, in Heber Springs, Arkansas:

These projects produce wealth, they bring industry, they bring jobs, and the wealth they bring brings wealth to other sections of the United States. This State had about 200,000 cars in 1929. It has a million cars now. They weren’t built in this State. They were built in Detroit. As this State’s income rises, so does the income of Michigan. As the income of Michigan rises, so does the income of the United States. A rising tide lifts all the boats and as Arkansas becomes more prosperous so does the United States and as this section declines so does the United States. So I regard this as an investment by the people of the United States in the United States.

In those speeches, Kennedy was talking not about individual wealthy but about public policy and government projects. He was, in fact, speaking in praise of the government spending that rightwingers misuse the quotation to oppose.

Do you think The Usual Suspects will stop using that quotation now that we know their meaning is not what President Kennedy meant at all?

…Neither do I.

Posted in Republicans acting badly, truthiness | 1 Comment »

 
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