Monday, February 15, 2010

JFK disinformationists gather on one site!

Wow. Even I didn't think they could be this dumb. The CIA's most friendly defenders on the JFK Assassination are now all together, in one site called "Washington Decoded."

I mean, how silly can they get? Consider the posters there:

1. Priscilla Johson McMillan. Her CIA file listed her at a "witting collaborator." And not only did she write a book about Marina Oswald and her husband Lee Harvey Oswald that Marina called a pack of lies, McMillan also claims to have slept with JFK. Yep. I saw that in a tabloid one day. Makes me wonder how many other of JFK's paramour's are also "witting collaborators" with the CIA.

2. Max Holland. Max Holland published his anti-New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison screed in the CIA's internal publication "Studies in Intelligence" after The Nation turned his piece down, despite the fact that he was a regular writer there.

3. John McAdams. Went to a JFK conference under an alias, lied about who he was and what he did in an interview with a reporter, and was liaison to an institute whose predecessor institute , according to Christopher Simpson, "functioned as a sort of outpost of the federal government." He is the Internet's most prolific disinformationist on the JFK case. And he's a flat out liar. He accused Dr. Gary Aguilar of being a drug user when nothing could be further from the truth. He accused another poster of being a pedophile simply to scare him out of the forum (it worked, despite McAdams never offering any evidence.) I had an argument with McAdams that was about a week long, by the end of which he had to concede my point. Then he dishonestly started the exact same disinformation I had just successfully rebutted in a different forum, as though our conversation had never taken place. I've never seen such a clear cut example of dishonesty in my life.

4. Mel Ayton. Mel Ayton is the British equivalent of the above. Mel couldn't recognize a cover-up if it fell on his car. His work on the RFK case in particular is ridiculous. He heavily sources a member of Sirhan's defense team as if he's a credible observer, when the guy he references was in such trouble with the law there could be only one reason he was on Sirhan's defense team: to inform on the defense to the police. That's a long story I have yet to write up, but will, because it's important. And it's not like this guy's background was hard to find. It's right there in the LAPD's files, which are well organized and easily cross-referenced.

Now that Gerald Posner was fired (he says he offered his resignation, but Jack Shafer, who broke the news of his plagiarism, says Posner was dismissed) for plagiarizing his articles, I wouldn't be surprised to see his work (or someone's, under his name) show up here, too. Then the circle would be complete.

Posner wrote Case Closed, a book which plagiarized the work of a law firm to attempt to make the case for Oswald being the lone assassin, a case the FBI disproved before the Warren Report was even published, although they wouldn't admit it.

What the FBI found was this: They could not fire Oswald's rifle and not get nitrate on their cheeks. But Oswald had no nitrate on his cheek. So one of their own went before the Warren Commission and made the spectacular evasion that, in his "opinion" the impossible was possible. Never mind that he had no facts to back that up. His "opinion" was then cited as "proof" that Oswald was simply exhibiting a 'false negative' - no nitrate even though he had fired that rifle. Yes, folks, that's really what happened. That wouldn't pass a fifth grade science course. But science and the needed version of history were incompatible, so guess which one was sacrificed?

By the way - the FBI actually traced the ammunition in the so-called murder weapon and found that it came from a large order placed by the Marines. The problem was, the bullets didn't fit any Marine weapons, and the FBI memo writer speculated this could have been a CIA order using military cover, a common practice. Pretty nice, eh? The FBI wasn't dumb. But J. Edgar Hoover was being blackmailed by James Angleton, the CIA's counterintelligence chief, and had no power to go up against the CIA. And so the false history was created, and continues to be reinforced by the above and others.

People who disseminate false history are chart switchers. Imagine you go to the hospital with cancer. But someone switches your chart, and you are suddenly being treated for diabetes, even though you don't have diabetes. And your cancer is not being treated, because the doctors are looking at the wrong chart.

You'd be so upset, wouldn't you?

That's what's happening to our country. We're given all this false history, and then we're offered the "cure" which, as we've seen, is just a disaster. Every time the CIA is caught in a scandal, they plead ineptitude and say if they only had more money, they could do a better job. I guess they learned from all those small countries who only had to claim Communists were gaining strength there to (cha-ching!) get some immediate funding from the USA. I read recently that the CIA's black budget in 2004 was triple that of the Pentagon's! I also read that the Church Committee found out the CIA's media budget was greater than that of the AP and Reuters combined. And while it's illegal to directly propagandize the American public, they have provably done it. And no one has ever been held accountable.

Is it any wonder our country is swirling the drain? We citizens have been lousy parents. Remember - government employees answer to us, not the other way around. We've never stepped up to our responsibility to demand an appropriate level of accountability and transparency. And if you never discipline your children, they can easily become criminals. You disincentivize your child through "consequences." But we routinely give members of the intelligence community a free pass. How many of us even know where our money goes? How many of us realize how MANY intelligence agencies we have? Along with Homeland Security, the FBI, and the CIA, we also have the NSA, NRO, NGA, FBI, DIA, DEA, DARPA, and of course, all the military branches of intelligence. And that's just a few of the ones we're allowed to know about. There are still others.

And we're losing our ability to exercise any accountability. While you rail against Obama or Cheney, while you watch the Olympics, or play with your children, your vote is quietly going all-digital. That means there won't be any way to get a recount that is meaningful. Your vote will only ever say not what YOU said, but what the PROGRAMMER DECIDED YOU SAID. You really need to understand this because what may be the very last chance we'll ever have to fix this is slipping away and will be gone, perhaps forever, in a few months. And then we'll never know. We'll have the illusion, always, of free and fair elections. But those of us who have looked under the hood know that will be an unprovable illusion, if we move to voting over the Internet, voting by phone, voting on computers, or any other method where someone can intercede between you and your vote.

I also read recently that the largest part of the CIA's budget has historically gone to election manipulation operations (ostensibly abroad, but it's hard to believe that they didn't try that at home, as well).

A lot of people thought getting Obama into office would change the world. We all can see now that is not at all the case. It's going to take a lot more than Obama to change this country. It's going to take the active participation of many more of us. US. There is no one else. We have to be leaders. And we have to join groups, because we have more power collectively than separately. But similarly, we have to hold our group leaders accountable. When they run off a cliff, we must not follow them. Remember that, in the 1960s, the FBI and CIA ran operations that enabled them to not just infiltrate, but in some cases to lead so-called opposition groups. They led them in unproductive directions.

Are you in a group that is floundering in unproductive directions? Maybe it's time for a new group leader.

There is much to do. I hope you are still awake, still energized, still fighting. The notion of what America should be is so powerful. We all grew up with that myth. We have the power to make that myth a reality. All we need is the will, and commitment to make it happen.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The ACLU has NOT filed suit to have all military cross-shaped headstones removed!

I was forwarded this email today, causing me to shake my head at the ignorance of those who believe anything they read, no matter how ridiculous it is, if it conforms to their overall view of the world.

Here's the message with my commentary interspersed. I left out most of the images, but had to include the first and last ones for reasons that will become clear.

Did you know that the ACLU American Civil Liberties Union has filed a suit to have all military cross-shaped headstones removed

How could you? They didn't. The ACLU has never filed such a suit, says the ACLU. Says Snopes, if you don't believe the ACLU. In addition, Arlington doesn't even have cross-shaped headstones. They all bear the standard rectangular shape. Go there and see for yourself.

This picture does not show religious crosses at Arlington. Instead, it shows
NON-religious crosses at Arlington West, a project by Veterans for Peace, in which volunteers put markers on the beach in Santa Monica every Sunday to raise awareness of how many soldiers are dying in our current wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The goal of the project is to end the wars. Why the cross? "The cross was chosen for its simplicity, not for its religious connotation," says the Arlington West site.

and another suit to end prayer from the military completely. They're making great progress. The Navy Chaplains can no longer mention Jesus' name in prayer thanks to the wretched ACLU and our new administration.

Not true. There is no such ruling, and the ACLU has pressed for full religious freedom for all soldiers to practice their individual faiths without fear or favor.

I'm not breaking this one.

But you should. You have the power to break the chain of disinformation being propagated by this inaccurate, and therefore dishonest, email. You dishonor our troops by passing around such falsities when they fight for truth and justice. There is no truth or justice in circulating false claims. Stop dishonoring the troops with false claims.

The rest of the email asks for a prayer for the troops. That is always welcome, and necessary. But can we also pray for all the innocents caught in the crossfire, who have committed no crimes, who die every day simply by the misfortune of their location?

And please, read Mark Twain's war prayer before you make your own.

This, too, is Arlington West, a peace project by military veterans. The coffins represent those who died that week. The people who honor the military in this manner each week are primarily leftists.

I'll leave you with a quote from the bible. Proverbs 6:16-19, to be exact:

There are six things which the LORD hates, Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, And hands that shed innocent blood,
A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that run rapidly to evil,
A false witness who utters lies, And one who spreads strife among brothers.

Want to serve God? Then check out emails before forwarding. Otherwise, you are bearing false witness and spreading strife, and God would, per the bible, not approve.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Gerald Posner admits he's guilty of plagiarism - inadvertent plagiarism, that is

Did you catch this today?
Veteran journalist Gerald Posner acknowledged today that he copied five sentences from a Miami Herald article this week for a piece he wrote for the Daily Beast. The Daily Beast appended an editor's note to the beginning of Posner's piece today, explaining that the copying was "inadvertent" and that the Daily Beast has deleted the copied passages.
Posner admitted that he had plagiarized, but with a twist. He didn't remember doing it. He said he clearly must have copied the text, but doesn't remember seeing that article, much less copying from it.

There are only two ways that can be true: he doesn't write his own stuff, or he has some short-term memory issues.

I'm a writer. I know what it's like to read someone else's information and then try to make it your own. I often copy quotes out verbatim in my notes specifically so I can avoid rephrasing them from memory in a way that too closely matches the original.

But to claim you don't remember, when you're writing a current news story? I mean, this isn't something he copied out ten years ago - this is a current news story. I find it hard to believe that Posner just didn't remember copying this (unless he really didn't write the piece). It's much easier to believe he was in a hurry, grabbed something useful, did some minor edits, thought it was good enough, and sent it out, not realizing people would spot the similarities.

Then he makes this odd mea culpa - yes, I'm guilty - I just don't remember doing it. That's kind of like the thief saying yes, I admit your pearls are in my pocket, I just don't remember putting them there.

And in what I consider the strangest turn of all, in many of the comments, his supporters say oh, isn't that wonderful, the thief confessed. How lovely. That makes it all better, right? Not in my book. Most thieves confess when caught. That takes no act of courage at all. There is simply no other option when you are caught red-handed.

And he doesn't really confess. He simply states the obvious - it's clearly plagiarism.

What's really shocking is that this is a story that Posner had already written about, to a degree:
Posner is no stranger to the story he plagiarized, having covered elements of it for his 2009 book Miami Babylon: Crime Wealth and Power—A Dispatch From the Beach. He has continued to gather material on it for the book's upcoming paperback edition. Citing primary documents in his possession and his own original reporting, he said that he didn't have to plagiarize the Herald to write his Beast story.
So why did he copy someone else's words at all? Curioser and curioser.

Hey, Goldman Sachs: give half your bonuses this year to Haiti

From this article:
Haiti's disaster, on the front of every newspaper, has given Goldman Sachs an unequalled opportunity. A simple act of generosity could bring it front-page publicity, one that would do much to allay the controversy on everyone's lips. By donating just half of their bonuses to Haitian relief, they will outmatch the Haitian GDP, and improve not only their image but their tax liability. Church World Service, an efficient and experienced relief organization, for example, administering the Goldman Sachs billions, could ensure that reconstruction is not just a return to pre-earthquake squalor, but an enduring monument to the bankers' unprecedented liberality. In this simple way Goldman Sachs alone would surpass the $100 million that President Obama has pledged to Haiti, by a monumental factor of 100.
Please read the whole short article. This is a wonderful idea that should be widely circulated!! There's no starker contrast between greed and need than between Goldman Sachs and Haiti.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Michael Moore is running my Haiti pieces as "Must Read" items today!