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Obama's Close Friend & Appointee Proposed Government Infiltration of Forums


Guest Tom Scully
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Guest Tom Scully

Doesn't it seem that Obama has been all about no change and about no new emphasis on investigating or instituting individual accountability for the illegal acts practiced by the elite, the exact same rotted conditions he campaigned (promised) to try to change, but has actually instead endorsed and actually further strengthened?

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123138051682263203.html

* JANUARY 8, 2009

Obama's Regulatory Czar Likely to Set a New Tone

By JONATHAN WEISMAN and JESS BRAVIN

WASHINGTON -- Cass Sunstein, a Harvard Law School professor who pioneered efforts to design regulation around the ways people behave, will be named the Obama administration's regulatory czar, a transition official said Wednesday.

Mr. Sunstein, a friend of President-elect Barack Obama from their faculty days at the University of Chicago law school, will mark a sharp departure for the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. Although obscure, the post wields outsize power. It oversees regulations throughout the government, from the Environmental Protection Agency to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Obama aides have said the job will be crucial as the new administration overhauls financial-services regulations, attempts to pass universal health care and tries to forge a new approach to controlling emissions of greenhouse gases.

Under President George W. Bush, the office has been dominated by administrators with a strong deregulatory bent. Activists saw it as the place where environmental, workplace safety, consumer products and other areas of regulation often stalled or died.

http://rawstory.com/2010/01/obama-staffer-...ion-911-groups/

Obama staffer wants ‘cognitive infiltration’ of 9/11 conspiracy groups

By Daniel Tencer

Wednesday, January 13th, 2010 -- 10:48 pm

In a 2008 academic paper, President Barack Obama's appointee to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs advocated "cognitive infiltration" of groups that advocate "conspiracy theories" like the ones surrounding 9/11.

Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled "Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures," in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via "chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine" those groups.

As head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Sunstein is in charge of "overseeing policies relating to privacy, information quality, and statistical programs," according to the White House Web site.

Sunstein's article, published in the Journal of Political Philosphy in 2008 and recently uncovered by blogger Marc Estrin, states that "our primary claim is that conspiracy theories typically stem not from irrationality or mental illness of any kind but from a 'crippled epistemology,' in the form of a sharply limited number of (relevant) informational sources."

By "crippled epistemology" Sunstein means that people who believe in conspiracy theories have a limited number of sources of information that they trust. Therefore, Sunstein argued in the article, it would not work to simply refute the conspiracy theories in public -- the very sources that conspiracy theorists believe would have to be infiltrated.

Sunstein, whose article focuses largely on the 9/11 conspiracy theories, suggests that the government "enlist nongovernmental officials in the effort to rebut the theories. It might ensure that credible independent experts offer the rebuttal, rather than government officials themselves. There is a tradeoff between credibility and control, however. The price of credibility is that government cannot be seen to control the independent experts."

Download a PDF of the article here:

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1084585

Sunstein argued that "government might undertake (legal) tactics for breaking up the tight cognitive clusters of extremist theories." He suggested that "government agents (and their allies) might enter chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine percolating conspiracy theories by raising doubts about their factual premises, causal logic or implications for political action."

"We expect such tactics from undercover cops, or FBI," Estrin writes at the Rag Blog, expressing surprise that "a high-level presidential advisor" would support such a strategy.

Estrin notes that Sunstein advocates in his article for the infiltration of "extremist" groups so that it undermines the groups' confidence to the extent that "new recruits will be suspect and participants in the group’s virtual networks will doubt each other’s bona fides."...

http://www.democracynow.org/2008/7/22/obam...n_debates_glenn

July 22, 2008

Obama Adviser Cass Sunstein Debates Glenn Greenwald on FISA Vote, Executive Power and Prosecuting White House Officials for War Crimes

....AMY GOODMAN: I recently spoke to Democratic Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, who’s been a leading congressional voice against the Bush spy program. This is some of what he had to say.

SEN. RUSS FEINGOLD: The President takes the position that under Article II of the Constitution he can ignore the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. We believe that that’s absolutely wrong. I have pointed out that I think it is not only against the law, but I think it’s a pretty plain impeachable offense that the President created this program, and yet this immunity provision may have the effect not only of giving immunity to the telephone companies, but it may also allow the administration to block legal accountability for this crime, which I believe it is.

AMY GOODMAN: Cass Sunstein?

CASS SUNSTEIN: Well, there has been a big debate among law professors and within the Supreme Court about the President’s adherent authority to wiretap people. And while I agree with Senator Feingold that the President’s position is wrong and the Supreme Court has recently, indirectly at least, given a very strong signal that the Supreme Court itself has rejected the Bush position, the idea that it’s an impeachable offense to adopt an incorrect interpretation of the President’s power, that, I think, is too far-reaching. There are people in the Clinton administration who share Bush’s view with respect to foreign surveillance. There are past attorney generals who suggested that the Bush administration position is right. So, I do think the Bush administration is wrong—let’s be very clear on that—but the notion that it’s an impeachable offense seems to me to distort the notion of what an impeachable offense is. That’s high crimes and misdemeanors. And an incorrect, even a badly incorrect, interpretation of the law is not impeachable.

AMY GOODMAN: Glenn Greenwald?

GLENN GREENWALD: You know, I think this mentality that we’re hearing is really one of the principal reasons why our government has become so lawless and so distorted over the past thirty years. You know, if you go into any courtroom where there is a criminal on trial for any kind of a crime, they’ll have lawyers there who stand up and offer all sorts of legal and factual justifications or defenses for what they did. You know, going back all the way to the pardon of Nixon, you know, you have members of the political elite and law professors standing up and saying, “Oh, there’s good faith reasons not to impeach or to criminally prosecute.” And then you go to the Iran-Contra scandal, where the members of the Beltway class stood up and said the same things Professor Sunstein is saying: we need to look to the future, it’s important that we not criminalize policy debates. You know, you look at Lewis Libby being spared from prison.

And now you have an administration that—we have a law in this country that says it is a felony offense, punishable by up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine, to spy on Americans without the warrants required by law. We have a president who got caught doing that, who admits that he did that. And yet, you have people saying, “Well, there may be legal excuses as to why he did that.” Or you have a president who admits ordering, in the White House, planning with his top aides, interrogation policies that the International Red Cross says are categorically torture, which are also felony offenses in the United States. And you have people saying, “Well, we can’t criminalize policy disputes.”

And what this has really done is it’s created a two-tiered system of government, where government leaders know that they are free to break our laws, and they’ll have members of the pundit class and the political class and law professors standing up and saying, “Well, these are important intellectual issues that we need to grapple with, and it’s really not fair to put them inside of a courtroom or talk about prison.” And so, we’ve incentivized lawlessness in this country. I mean, the laws are clear that it’s criminal to do these things. The President has done them, and he—there’s no reason to treat him differently than any other citizen who breaks our laws. ...

http://pogoblog.typepad.com/pogo/2010/01/t...statements.html

Jan 12, 2010

The Good Old Days of Signing Statements?

The Obama administration apparently has a new policy on signing statements — opinions that the president attaches to bills he is signing into law — that could have us longing for the days when presidents would, to the outrage of lots of folks including POGO, simply declare that provisions of laws passed by Congress were not applicable to the executive branch.

Now, as reported late last week in the New York Times, the Obama administration is effectively taking its disagreements with Congress off the radar. The White House explained that if it has previously indicated in a signing statement that the president would ignore a provision in a bill, a signing statement on a new but similar bill would not be necessary. Here's an example of how it works: .......

....This new approach doesn't just ignore one of our recommendations to the Obama administration — it completely violates the spirit behind it. Signing statements were bad enough, but at least with them we knew when the executive branch was abusing its powers — now, with mute disagreements and internal memos, it's possible that the public will be left completely in the dark.

-- Bryan Rahija

http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles...ing_statements/

Examples of the president's signing statements

April 30, 2006

Since taking office in 2001, President Bush has issued signing statements on more than 750 new laws, declaring that he has the power to set aside the laws when they conflict with his legal interpretation of the Constitution. The federal government is instructed to follow the statements when it enforces the laws. Here are 10 examples and the dates Bush signed them:...

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Guest James H. Fetzer

Obama Confident's Spine-Chilling Proposal

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_gr.../01/15/sunstein

Roger Bruce Feinman, J.D.

http://rawstory.com/2010/01/obama-staffer-...ion-911-groups/

This week, my attention was called to an article published in 2008 by the Journal of Political Philosophy,

co-authored by Professor Cass Sunstein of the University of Chicago Law School, and entitled "Conspiracy

Theories: Causes and Cures," Obama appointed Sunstein to head his Office of Information and Regulatory

Affairs.

Reformulated in terms that are immediately relevant to our interests, Sunstein's thesis is that it is a

proper function of the United States Government to actively undermine the efficacy of those who propagate

the belief that President Kennedy was assassinated by a conspiracy within the government itself

(specifically the CIA, but presumably allowing for one or more conspiracies among other participants),

even by using covert means to disrupt their communications. There is nothing novel about this idea.

During 1966, the United States Information Agency secretly employed the English barrister, Arthur

Goodhart to rail against Mark Lane, and this propaganda effort "came home to roost" when Goodhart

lectured on the assassination controversy at the headquarters of The Association of the Bar of the City of

New York. In 1967, the CIA itself circulated a memo instructing its overseas attaches on arguments and

tactics that might be used to undermine critics of the Warren Commission. There is, in short, a long

history of official government initiatives to counteract the critics.

I need not underscore that Sunstein is one of the self-styled elite of the law profession who have

made it their mission to defend the integrity of the Warren Commission and it's lone assassin thesis.

What is new is that Sunstein, himself now an official of the Obama Administration, having been a close

friend of the President before his election, has openly and unashamedly endorsed the use of subversive

tactics against American citizens exercising their First Amendment rights of free speech, assembly, and

petitioning for the redress of a longstanding grievance: the government's refusal to disclose the truth

about the assassination.

Because Sunstein employs familiar socio-psychological babble to characterize those who believe one or more

conspiracy theories, I shall not deign to his mode of "analysis". His scheme of argument is simply abominable.

Of more particular concern is Sunstein's suggestion, using the Oklahoma City bombing as his prime example,

that if left unchecked, conspiracy theories inherently threaten the stability of government by posing the nascent

threat of violent action, either by individuals, small groups, or an aroused populace.

Sunstein admits that he can offer no evidence to support this theory. For him, the inchoate harm of conspiracy

theories in itself provides sufficient evidence of their danger, and the impetus to act accordingly. His

recommendations include that "government enlist independent groups" to rebut theories and employ "cognitive

inflitration designed to break up the crippled epistemology of conspiracy-minded groups." He speaks of "disabling"

the purveyors of conspiracy theories and "attempting to immunize third-party audiences from the theory's effects."

As I see it, Sunstein stops all too short of favoring physical coercion to eradicate the threat he perceives, albeit

that seems to be the logical extension of his views. Regardless, it is his open endorsement of active government involvement in suppressing communicative activities that should arouse the alarm and outrage of all who believe in democracy and self-determination.

We can all understand why this article has not attracted the attention of the mainstream press since it was published, nevertheless, I believe that Sunstein has given us adequate warrant to demand his resignation from the Obama administration and, in the absence of same, a congressional inquiry into whether, how, and to what extent he has

sought to implement his stated beliefs in his official capacity. Both Obama and Sunstein must be called to account

and made to defend this assault against civil liberties.

Roger Bruce Feinman, J.D.

http://rawstory.com/2010/01/obama-staffer-...ion-911-groups/

Edited by James H. Fetzer
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Mark Lane had to be discredited since he was on the right track from the very beginning. Killing Lane or Garrison would have been too obvious so unlimited resources were unleashed on discrediting the two. They were successful at this and it ramifications are felt even today.

Great article, Dr. Fetzer.

"This week, my attention was called to an article published in 2008 by the Journal of Political Philosophy,

co-authored by Professor Cass Sunstein of the University of Chicago Law School, and entitled "Conspiracy

Theories: Causes and Cures," Obama appointed Sunstein to head his Office of Information and Regulatory

Affairs.

Reformulated in terms that are immediately relevant to our interests, Sunstein's thesis is that it is a

proper function of the United States Government to actively undermine the efficacy of those who propagate

the belief that President Kennedy was assassinated by a conspiracy within the government itself

(specifically the CIA, but presumably allowing for one or more conspiracies among other participants),

even by using covert means to disrupt their communications. There is nothing novel about this idea.

During 1966, the United States Information Agency secretly employed the English barrister, Arthur

Goodhart to rail against Mark Lane, and this propaganda effort "came home to roost" when Goodhart

lectured on the assassination controversy at the headquarters of The Association of the Bar of the City of

New York. In 1967, the CIA itself circulated a memo instructing its overseas attaches on arguments and

tactics that might be used to undermine critics of the Warren Commission. There is, in short, a long

history of official government initiatives to counteract the critics."

Edited by Peter McGuire
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At a quick glance it appears that the article is simply an academic outline on how to combat conspiracy theories, in general, without a specific proposal to combat JFK conspiracy theories. For the most part, I found it harmless. It has several disturbing and short-sighted parts, however. At one point, Sunstein says "as a general rule, true accounts should not be undermined." Well, first of all, who is to decide which accounts are true and, second of all, who decides when it is permissible to counter accounts that ARE true, and which accounts are undermined?

I'd like to have a debate with this guy. Any way we can get him to join the Forum?

Edited by Pat Speer
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Guest Tom Scully

I guess the name, "Fetzer" can be used to eclipse any existing thread.

Let me know if the forum has become just another popularity contest, and I'll simply PM the professor when I see a subject interesting enough to start a new thread about.

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Guest Tom Scully
At a quick glance it appears that the article is simply an academic outline on how to combat conspiracy theories, in general, without a specific proposal to combat JFK conspiracy theories. For the most part, I found it harmless. It has several disturbing and short-sighted parts, however. At one point, Sunstein says "as a general rule, true accounts should not be undermined." Well, first of all, who is to decide which accounts are true and, second of all, who decides when it is permissible to counter accounts that ARE true, and which accounts are undermined?

I'd like to have a debate with this guy. Any way we can get him to join the Forum?

Pat, does Sunstein havr to name you before you accept that his extremism is a threat?

Is this not a description of what he is proposing vs. what we do, here?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=15260

...Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled "Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures," in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via "chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine" those groups....

If you keep finding all of the extreme right Obama bait and switch practices, "harmless", you risk experiencing the frog in the pan of heating water, surprise ending.

Obama has a friendship with extremist Cass Sunstein. After calling Hillary Clinton a "monster" during last years campaign, another Obama advisor was forced to resgin from the campaign, and then Sunstein married the woman.

It isn't one thing, Obama attrracted a majority who wanted change away from Bush/Cheney, secret government, unaccountable government, war escalation with no discernible national security benefit, away from bill of rights abuse, respect for the oath to preserve and protect the constitution, since that is the promise made by the incoming president, and his duty....first and foremost, to protect the constitution, it is wisely worded, not primarily a promise to protect the country.

Obama talked the talk, he appointed Dawn Johnsen to head the office of legal counsel. Obama's party held an historic senate majority. Dawn Johnsen was a fair and resaonable choice, unless you happen to think like a shrill, right wing partisan extemist who only votes know and can easily neuter a weak, right wing new president who postured a fake platform to get elected and then to bow down to the republican minority.

Now Obama's OLC, without Dawn Johnsen, who he made a show of apponting but noit supporting, has quietly made new rules that outdo the abuse and suppression of privacy rights to levels not taken by Bush. How many broken promises to preserve and protect the constitution before talk of impeachment is appropriate?

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/01/f...aws/#more-13023

FBI, Telecoms Teamed to Breach Wiretap Laws

* January 21, 2010

..The Obama administration retroactively legalized the entire fiasco via a secret ruling from the Office of Legal Counsel.

That’s the same office from which John Yoo blessed President George W. Bush’s Bush’s torture techniques and warrantless wiretapping of Americans’ communications that crossed the border.

In the report’s final and heavily censored section, it discloses that the Office of Legal Counsel issued an opinion almost two weeks ago that it was legal for the FBI to obtain Americans’ phone records in the same manner that was harshly criticized by the inspector general’s report.

The inspector general also warned that the Office of Legal Counsel’s ruling needs to be considered by Congress....

In the new term, Dawn Johnsen has been renominated, but there is no sign of commitment to fight for her appointment. This is a senate with the largest majority of any party in memory, and it is impotent by intent of that majority. They are losing by being irrelevant by design.

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2009/12/...ination-killed/

Why Did Obama Kill The Dawn Johnsen Nomination?

By: bmaz Friday December 25, 2009 8:24 pm

...Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel had 59 votes in favor of Dawn Johnsen’s nomination, a distinct possibility of picking up Collins, Snowe or both, and are more than aware Arlen Specter needs big help in his reelection campaign in Pennsylvania and that Ben Nelson can always be bought. And despite all of the above, the Obama White House did not ever request Harry Reid to call a vote. The only rational conclusion from this is the Obama White House did not want Dawn Johnsen, their own nominee, to be confirmed.

In the end, it is likely Barack Obama, Rahm Emanuel and the servants of the status quo simply did not really want a true advocate for governmental transparency, a critic who excoriated Bush/Cheney policies on warrantless wiretapping, torture, indefinite detention, ignoring international treaties and conventions, and concentration of power in a unitary executive; all policies the Obama Administration has substantially co-opted as its own. So Dawn Johnsen was a pawn, a shiny object, catnip for a desperate liberal base; but in the end, as always, Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel just didn’t really care about their liberal base who put them in office.

There is a lot of detritus in the wake of the Obama White House duplicity on the Dawn Johnsen nomination. They humiliated Dawn Johnsen by letting her twist in the wind, wasted a year of her life, disrupted the faculty and student body of the Indiana University School of Law and sold out a huge block of liberal and progressive voters who were the very voters and ground organizers carrying Obama to election in the first place. ...

Edited by Tom Scully
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At a quick glance it appears that the article is simply an academic outline on how to combat conspiracy theories, in general, without a specific proposal to combat JFK conspiracy theories. For the most part, I found it harmless. It has several disturbing and short-sighted parts, however. At one point, Sunstein says "as a general rule, true accounts should not be undermined." Well, first of all, who is to decide which accounts are true and, second of all, who decides when it is permissible to counter accounts that ARE true, and which accounts are undermined?

I'd like to have a debate with this guy. Any way we can get him to join the Forum?

Pat, does Sunstein havr to name you before you accept that his extremism is a threat?

Is this not a description of what he is proposing vs. what we do, here?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=15260

...Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled "Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures," in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via "chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine" those groups....

If you keep finding all of the extreme right Obama bait and switch practices, "harmless", you risk experiencing the frog in the pan of heating water, surprise ending.

Obama has a friendship with extremist Cass Sunstein. After calling Hillary Clinton a "monster" during last years campaign, another Obama advisor was forced to resgin from the campaign, and then Sunstein married the woman.

It isn't one thing, Obama attrracted a majority who wanted change away from Bush/Cheney, secret government, unaccountable government, war escalation with no discernible national security benefit, away from bill of rights abuse, respect for the oath to preserve and protect the constitution, since that is the promise made by the incoming president, and his duty....first and foremost, to protect the constitution, it is wisely worded, not primarily a promise to protect the country.

Obama talked the talk, he appointed Dawn Johnsen to head the office of legal counsel. Obama's party held an historic senate majority. Dawn Johnsen was a fair and resaonable choice, unless you happen to think like a shrill, right wing partisan extemist who only votes know and can easily neuter a weak, right wing new president who postured a fake platform to get elected and then to bow down to the republican minority.

Now Obama's OLC, without Dawn Johnsen, who he made a show of apponting but noit supporting, has quietly made new rules that outdo the abuse and suppression of privacy rights to levels not taken by Bush. How many broken promises to preserve and protect the constitution before talk of impeachment is appropriate?

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/01/f...aws/#more-13023

FBI, Telecoms Teamed to Breach Wiretap Laws

* January 21, 2010

..The Obama administration retroactively legalized the entire fiasco via a secret ruling from the Office of Legal Counsel.

That’s the same office from which John Yoo blessed President George W. Bush’s Bush’s torture techniques and warrantless wiretapping of Americans’ communications that crossed the border.

In the report’s final and heavily censored section, it discloses that the Office of Legal Counsel issued an opinion almost two weeks ago that it was legal for the FBI to obtain Americans’ phone records in the same manner that was harshly criticized by the inspector general’s report.

The inspector general also warned that the Office of Legal Counsel’s ruling needs to be considered by Congress....

In the new term, Dawn Johnsen has been renominated, but there is no sign of commitment to fight for her appointment. This is a senate with the largest majority of any party in memory, and it is impotent by intent of that majority. They are losing by being irrelevant by design.

http://emptywheel.firedoglake.com/2009/12/...ination-killed/

Why Did Obama Kill The Dawn Johnsen Nomination?

By: bmaz Friday December 25, 2009 8:24 pm

...Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel had 59 votes in favor of Dawn Johnsen’s nomination, a distinct possibility of picking up Collins, Snowe or both, and are more than aware Arlen Specter needs big help in his reelection campaign in Pennsylvania and that Ben Nelson can always be bought. And despite all of the above, the Obama White House did not ever request Harry Reid to call a vote. The only rational conclusion from this is the Obama White House did not want Dawn Johnsen, their own nominee, to be confirmed.

In the end, it is likely Barack Obama, Rahm Emanuel and the servants of the status quo simply did not really want a true advocate for governmental transparency, a critic who excoriated Bush/Cheney policies on warrantless wiretapping, torture, indefinite detention, ignoring international treaties and conventions, and concentration of power in a unitary executive; all policies the Obama Administration has substantially co-opted as its own. So Dawn Johnsen was a pawn, a shiny object, catnip for a desperate liberal base; but in the end, as always, Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel just didn’t really care about their liberal base who put them in office.

There is a lot of detritus in the wake of the Obama White House duplicity on the Dawn Johnsen nomination. They humiliated Dawn Johnsen by letting her twist in the wind, wasted a year of her life, disrupted the faculty and student body of the Indiana University School of Law and sold out a huge block of liberal and progressive voters who were the very voters and ground organizers carrying Obama to election in the first place. ...

I think where we differ is in our assessment of the problem. You have a fear of Big Brother. I share this concern, but have an additional fear of Little Idiot Brother. The slaughter in Rwanda was fueled by talk radio hosts telling their listeners their fellow countrymen were their enemy because they belonged to a different ethnic group, and that this other group was evil and out to get them. The slaughter in the Balkans was fueled by a similar coalescence of the fearful and the vengeful. Much of the racial violence in this country, historically, was not performed by the rich and powerful, but by the poor, ignorant, and fearful. Even today, there is a very REAL possibility someone listening to the likes of Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity, and attending these "Tea Parties", will come to believe Obama is part of a long-dormant International Communist Conspiracy, and decide it is his patriotic duty to kill him. It is well within the purview of a government that it do its best to prevent the slaughter of its people, including its leaders. It is not unreasonable then to push that a government, should it isolate a mode of thinking based on a false history, that could potentially lead to violence, attempt to counter this misinformation. One question is how best to do it.

Another question--the one on which I would like to debate Sunstein--is WHO decides which false histories should be countered. It's a slippery slope, IMO, and I'm sure you agree.

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At a quick glance it appears that the article is simply an academic outline on how to combat conspiracy theories, in general, without a specific proposal to combat JFK conspiracy theories. For the most part, I found it harmless. It has several disturbing and short-sighted parts, however. At one point, Sunstein says "as a general rule, true accounts should not be undermined." Well, first of all, who is to decide which accounts are true and, second of all, who decides when it is permissible to counter accounts that ARE true, and which accounts are undermined?

I'd like to have a debate with this guy. Any way we can get him to join the Forum?

HARMLESS? We are beginning to get a good read on Speer's mission.

Jack

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Jack,

"Harmless," like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. To someone who knows snakes, a garter snake is considered harmless; to someone who trusts NO snakes, NO snakes are harmless.

Sunstein certainly is a snake, IMHO...but at this point, I'm not ready to concede tht he is of the "harmless" variety.

As far as Pat Speer's "mission," I believe that his "mission" is to view everything with an open mind before making a judgement call. And I believe it would behoove all of us to make that our "mission." My interpretation of Pat's motives may not be correct, but it is, after all, MY interpretation.

Edited by Mark Knight
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Jack,

"Harmless," like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. To someone who knows snakes, a garter snake is considered harmless; to someone who trusts NO snakes, NO snakes are harmless.

Sunstein certainly is a snake, IMHO...but at this point, I'm not ready to concede tht he is of the "harmless" variety.

As far as Pat Speer's "mission," I believe that his "mission" is to view everything with an open mind before making a judgement call. And I believe it would behoove all of us to make that our "mission." My interpretation of Pat's motives may not be correct, but it is, after all, MY interpretation.

I see ALL snakes of all kinds as dangerous. In the summertime I usually see at least a snake a day in my

yard. I steer clear of all except the green Neon tree snake, which clearly is a benign little critter. About two

feet long and the diameter of a pencil, he looks like a neon tube and rests on tree limbs. I trust him.

I used to trust all researchers, till Dave Perry and Gus Russo asked me to show them my four hour slide

show. I now trust researchers like I trust most snakes. All are suspicious until they show themselves to

be benign.

Many dangerous snakes dangle from forum trees, offering forbidden fruit. Adam and Eve found out snakes

are not trustworthy.

Thanks.

Jack

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At a quick glance it appears that the article is simply an academic outline on how to combat conspiracy theories, in general, without a specific proposal to combat JFK conspiracy theories. For the most part, I found it harmless. It has several disturbing and short-sighted parts, however. At one point, Sunstein says "as a general rule, true accounts should not be undermined." Well, first of all, who is to decide which accounts are true and, second of all, who decides when it is permissible to counter accounts that ARE true, and which accounts are undermined?

I'd like to have a debate with this guy. Any way we can get him to join the Forum?

HARMLESS? We are beginning to get a good read on Speer's mission.

Jack

Jack--what part of "for the most part" don't you understand? As far as 'mission", from my perspective there is no one on this forum whose "mission" is as questionable as your own.

Consider:

1. I recently posted a slide comparing the various back of the head photos, in which I pointed out what I believe to have been the bullet hole discovered at autopsy.

2. Dr. Fetzer actually looked at this slide, and, to my surprise, agreed with me that this was a bullet hole, and that this showed that the HSCA pathology panel had incorrectly ignored important evidence. On my webpage, I show both how the Ida Dox drawing of the back of the head misrepresented the appearance of this dark spot, and how the close up photo of the white material in the hair just below this dark spot was cropped to exclude this dark spot from the photo, thereby concealing from the autopsy doctors the possibility the entrance they observed at autopsy was just above the white material shown to them. This, in turn, suggests that Dr. Baden at the very least conspired to keep this dark spot hidden. Perhaps this was done to protect the reputation of his close colleague Dr. Fisher, the first to claim the photos failed to show a bullet hole in this location. In any event, my "discovery" of this bullet hole in the back of the head photo, if acknowledged by the bulk of the research community, would have to be considered a major find, and a major step forward for the research community.

3. Nevertheless, you, only days after announcing all the photos are fake and are of no value beyond that they are fake, decided to intervene and convince Fetzer that the back of the head photo in fact showed no hole. Hmm...while perhaps you really did not see this hole, it certainly seems possible you were concerned that my "discovery" of this hole would lead to further inspection of the evidence, and undermine your position that the only thing worth looking at are anomalies. (FWIW, Robert Groden, who rescued the color back of the head photo from the dungeon of the archives, has long held that the intact back of the head in this photo is a matte. The matte he sees, however, is above the hole I see. In November, while I was talking to someone on the grassy knoll, Robert Groden ran over and told me he really respects my research, and asked me to sign his copy of my DVD. I was quite flattered to do so. On this DVD, I point out the bullet hole in the back of the head photo. As a result, I suspect Groden also sees this hole, and is now of the opinion it was the bullet hole mentioned in the autopsy report.)

4. After your telling Fetzer there was no hole visible in the photo, I pointed out that you had acknowledged years ago that you saw a bullet hole on the cranium in the location directly underlying the hole I see in the back of the head photo. You then tried to deny ever having said you shared my assessment of F8, the photo showing the hole on the cranium. When you posted your assessment of F8, however, it showed that we do, in fact share assessments of the photo. Except that, for some strange reason, the area of the photo in your exhibit showing the bullet hole was extremely dark, and supposedly on the left side of the skull. As the close up of this area you provided acknowledged that the bullet hole was to the right of the EOP--which is in the middle of the back of the head, however, it was clear you were either somewhat confused when you created this exhibit, or were trying to confuse Fetzer so that he wouldn't realize you were basically confirming what I'd claimed.

5. So what am I to believe? That you are sincere but frequently mistaken? Or that you are so antagonistic to anyone's studying the evidence for any purpose other than to "prove" it is fake, that you will deliberately mislead others?

I choose to suspect the former. But if you were in my shoes, you would undoubtedly suspect the latter.

eyeof.jpg

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Edited by Pat Speer
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Guest Tom Scully

Pat,

With all due respect, I started a thread on this subject before Fetzer did here, and hours before Peter also did over on the Poli-Conspiracy section.

I linked to it in my last post. In the third quote box down at that link are excerpts from a debate with Cass Sunstein dated July 22, 2008.

Glenn Greenwald took on Sunstein and pointed this out about Sunstein's mindset, it is the establishment mindset....no accountability for the political

class, the exact opposite of what Obama was claiming to be committed to at that time, to get himself elected. Obama then appointed Sunstein to

be his regulatory agency "reformer" and top manager!

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=15260

Glenn Greenwald:....where the members of the Beltway class stood up and said the same things Professor Sunstein is saying: we need to look to the future, it’s important that we not criminalize policy debates. ...

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