U.S. GOVERNMENT DEMANDS DETAILS ON ALL VISITORS TO ANTI-TRUMP PROTEST SITE (occupy.com)

WED, 8/16/2017 – BY JULIA CARRIE WONG AND OLIVIA SOLON

THIS ARTICLE ORIGINALLY APPEARED ON THE GUARDIAN

The US government is seeking to unmask every person who visited an anti-Trump website in what privacy advocates say is an unconstitutional “fishing expedition” for political dissidents.

The warrant appears to be an escalation of the Department of Justice’s (DoJ) campaign against anti-Trump activities, including the harsh prosecution of inauguration day protesters.

On July 17, the DoJ served a website-hosting company, DreamHost, with a search warrant for every piece of information it possessed that was related to a website that was used to coordinate protests during Donald Trump’s inauguration. The warrant covers the people who own and operate the site, but also seeks to get the IP addresses of 1.3 million people who visited it, as well as the date and time of their visit and information about what browser or operating system they used.

The website, www.disruptj20.org, was used to coordinate protests and civil disobedience on 20 January, when Trump was inaugurated.

“This specific case and this specific warrant are pure prosecutorial overreach by a highly politicized department of justice under [Attorney General Jeff] Sessions,” said Chris Ghazarian, general counsel for DreamHost. “You should be concerned that anyone should be targeted simply for visiting a website.”

The warrant was made public Monday, when DreamHost announced its plans to challenge the government in court. The DoJ declined to comment. A hearing is scheduled for Friday.

The government has aggressively prosecuted activists arrested during the January 20 protests in Washington DC. In April, the US attorney’s office in Washington DC filed a single indictment charging more than 217 people with identical crimes, including felony rioting.

Ghazarian said that DreamHost provided the government with “limited customer information about the owner of the website” when it first received a grand jury subpoena a week after the protests occurred. But the government came back in July with the much broader search warrant.

“We’re a gatekeeper between the government and tens of thousands of people who visited the website,” said Ghazarian. “We want to keep them protected.”

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, which has been advising DreamHost, characterized the warrant as “unconstitutional” and “a fishing expedition”.

“I can’t conceive of a legitimate justification other than casting your net as broadly as possible to justify millions of user logs,” senior staff attorney Mark Rumold told the Guardian.

Logs of IP addresses don’t uniquely identify users, but they link back to specific physical addresses if no digital tools are used to mask it.

“What they would be getting is a list of everyone who has ever been interested in attending these protests or seeing what was going on at the protests and that’s the troubling aspect. It’s a short step after you have the list to connect the IP address to someone’s identity,” he said.

Wide-reaching warrants for user data are sometimes issued when the content of a site is illegal such as pirated movies or child sexual abuse imagery, but speech is rarely prohibited.

“This [the website] is pure first amendment advocacy – the type of advocacy the first amendment was designed to protect and promote,” Rumold added. “Frankly I’m glad DreamHost is pushing back on it.”

It’s not the first time that the US government has sought to unmask people protesting against Trump or his policies.

In March this year, Customs and Border Protection (CBP), a division of the Homeland Security Department, ordered Twitter to hand over the phone number, mailing addresses and IP addresses associated with @ALT_USCIS, an account that purported to convey the views of dissenters within the government.

The account, whose username is a reference to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services, is one of dozens of alternative Twitter accounts established after Trump was inaugurated. The unverified accounts claimed to provide an uncensored view of civil servants who disagreed with Trump’s policies.

To protect the identity of the person running the account, Twitter launched a lawsuit against the Trump administration, arguing that it would have “a grave chilling effect on the speech of that account in particular and the many other ‘alternative agency’ accounts that have been created to voice dissent to government policies”.

After public outcry over the administration’s overreach, CBP dropped the request.

Originally published by The Guardian

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Alt-Right protests Lenin statue in Seattle — 7 people show up!


Published on Aug 17, 2017

The alt-right summoned almost 10 people to protest this Lenin statue. Cenk Uygur, the host of The Young Turks, breaks it down. Tell us what you think in the comment section below. https://tytnetwork.com/join/

“Far-right “Pizzagate” conspiracy theorist Jack Posobiec tweeted videos and photos Wednesday showing him leading a group of people protesting a Vladimir Lenin statue in Seattle.

Video shows Posobiec leading the group in a chant of “tear it down, tear it down” as the protesters — wearing “Make America Great Again” caps and holding placards bearing phrases like “Lenin is Hitler” and “Alt Left Hate” — marched around the statue.

It appears that about 7 people, including Posobiec, attended the demonstration.

Some alt-right websites lauded the protest, with political blog Gateway Pundit calling it “amazing.”

Many on Twitter, however, had a field day commenting on the small turnout.”

Read more here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/s…

Hosts: Cenk Uygur

Cast: Cenk Uygur

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Revolution (1968 SF documentary)


Published on Mar 29, 2017

The hippie spirit of Haight-Ashbury is alive and well in this documentary, shot in the heart of San Francisco during the days when hair was long, love was free and acid abounded. Featuring concert footage of Country Joe and the Fish and other bands, director Jack O’Connell’s quirky film captures the counterculture’s scope, from impassioned leaders such as Rev. Cecil Williams down to ordinary freaks on the street.

The film was invited to the 1968 Cannes Film Festival, but because of student riots against capitalism in France, political leaders there feared civil war or revolution. The film was withdrawn from the Cannes Festival because it was too incendiary for that time.
http://www.jackoconnellfilms.com

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Book: “Romantic Violence: Memoirs of an American Skinhead”

Front Cover

Goldmill Group, 2015 – Biography & Autobiography –

At 14 years old, Christian Picciolini, a bright and well-loved child from a good family, had been targeted and trained to spread a violent racist agenda, quickly ascending to a highly visible leadership position in America’s first neo-Nazi skinhead gang. Just how did this young boy from the suburbs of Chicago, who had so much going for him, become so lost in extremist ideologies that would horrify any decent person? ‘Romantic Violence: Memoirs of an American Skinhead’ is a poignant and gripping cautionary tale that details Christian’s indoctrination when he was barely a teen, a lonely outsider who, more than anything, just wanted to belong. A fateful meeting with a charismatic man who recognized and took advantage of Christian’s deep need for connection sent the next decade of his life into a dangerous spiral. When his mentor went to prison for a vicious hate crime, Christian stepped forward, and at 18, he was overseeing the most brutal extremist skinhead cells across the country. From fierce street brawls to drunken white power rallies, recruitment by foreign terrorist dictators to riotous white power rock music, Picciolini immersed himself in racist skinhead culture, hateful propaganda, and violence. Ultimately Christian began to see that his hate-filled life was built on lies. After years of battling the monster he created, he was able to reinvent himself. Picciolini went on to become an advocate for peace, inclusion, and racial diversity, co-founding the nonprofit Life After Hate, which helps people disengage from hate groups and to love themselves and accept others, regardless of skin color, religious belief, or sexual preference.

(Google Books)

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WARNING: Too Big To Fail Banks Are Getting EVEN BIGGER Soon


Published on Aug 16, 2017

According to one expert there will soon be a rash of major bank mergers, buckle up. Aida Rodriguez, Joe Sanberg and Steve Oh discuss on Our America. Learn more about Aspiration Bank here:  https://www.aspiration.com/tyt?utm_source=tyt

Read more here: https://www.cnbc.com/2017/07/14/let-t…

“American banks are swimming in excess funds. They do not know what to do with this money so they are giving it away in the form of stock buybacks and dividends. At the same, time the irony is that the banks are just starting to report mediocre to disappointing second quarter earnings. So, on one hand, the resources necessary to support meaningful growth are being given away.

On the other hand, the need to use this money to stimulate growth has never been greater. Initial earnings reports for the second quarter suggest that the banks are not obtaining the hoped for margin increases and it is tougher to locate new loans.

The absurdity of this situation is not going to persist. The door to intra-industry acquisitions may be about to crack open. The first inkling of merger mania was seen recently when JPMorgan Chase was reported to be considering buying a payment systems company Worldpay Group in Great Britain.”*

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“Historians Question Trump’s Comments on Confederate Monuments” by Jennifer Schuessler

George Washington, Robert E. Lee and Thomas Jefferson. Credit from left: Gilbert Charles Stuart; via Library of Congress; via Getty Images

August 15, 2017 (nytimes.com)

President Trump is not generally known as a student of history. But on Tuesday, during a combative exchange with reporters at Trump Tower in New York, he unwittingly waded into a complex debate about history and memory that has roiled college campuses and numerous cities over the past several years.

Asked about the white nationalist rally that ended in violence last weekend in Charlottesville, Va., Mr. Trump defended some who had gathered to protect a statue of Robert E. Lee, and criticized the “alt-left” counterprotesters who had confronted them.

“Many of those people were there to protest the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee,” Mr. Trump said. “So this week, it is Robert E. Lee. I noticed that Stonewall Jackson is coming down.”

George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, the president noted, were also slave owners. “I wonder, is it George Washington next week?” Mr. Trump said. “And is it Thomas Jefferson the week after?”

“You know, you really do have to ask yourself, where does it stop?” he added, comparing the removal of statues to “changing history.”

Mr. Trump’s comments drew strongly negative reactions on Twitter from many historians, who condemned his “false equivalence” between the white nationalists and the counterprotesters.

But “where does it stop?” — and what counts as erasing history — is a question scholars and others have asked, in much more nuanced ways, as calls have come to remove monuments not just to the Confederacy, but to erstwhile liberal heroes and pillars of the Democratic Party like Andrew Jackson (a slave owner who, as president, carried out Native American removal) and Woodrow Wilson (who as president oversaw the segregation of the federal bureaucracy).

Photo

A pedestal in Durham, N.C., that held a statue of a Confederate soldier before demonstrators pulled it down.CreditMadeline Gray for The New York Times

“The debates that started two or three years ago have saturated the culture so much that even the president is now talking about them,” said John Fabian Witt, a professor of history at Yale, which earlier this year announced that it would remove John C. Calhoun’s name from a residential college.

Mr. Witt called Mr. Trump’s warning of a slippery slope a “red herring.” There have been, after all, no calls to tear down the Washington Monument.

Annette Gordon-Reed, a professor of history and law at Harvard who is credited with breaking down the wall of resistance among historians to the idea that Jefferson had a sexual relationship with Sally Hemings, said that the answer to Mr. Trump’s hypothetical question about whether getting rid of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson also meant junking Washington and Jefferson was a simple “no.”

There is a crucial difference between leaders like Washington and Jefferson, imperfect men who helped create the United States, Ms. Gordon-Reed said, and Confederate generals like Jackson and Lee, whose main historical significance is that they took up arms against it. The comparison, she added, also “misapprehends the moral problem with the Confederacy.”

Photo

A statue of Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy, on Monument Avenue in Richmond, Va. CreditSteve Helber/Associated Press

“This is not about the personality of an individual and his or her flaws,” she said. “This is about men who organized a system of government to maintain a system of slavery and to destroy the American union.”

As for the idea of erasing history, it’s a possibility most scholars do not take lightly. But James Grossman, the executive director of the American Historical Association, said that Mr. Trump’s comments failed to recognize the difference between history and memory, which is always shifting.

When you alter monuments, “you’re not changing history,” he said. “You’re changing how we remember history.”

Some critics of Confederate monuments have called for them to be moved to museums, rather than destroyed, or even left in place and reinterpreted, to explain the context in which they were created. Mr. Grossman noted that most Confederate monuments were constructed in two periods: the 1890s, as Jim Crow was being established, and in the 1950s, during a period of mass Southern resistance to the civil rights movement.

Photo

The statue of the Confederate general Robert E. Lee in Emancipation Park in Charlottesville, Va.CreditJulia Rendleman/Associated Press

“We would not want to whitewash our history by pretending that Jim Crow and disenfranchisement or massive resistance to the civil rights movement never happened,” he said. “That is the part of our history that these monuments testify to.”

How the events in Charlottesville, and Mr. Trump’s comments, will affect the continuing debate over Confederate monuments remains to be seen. Mr. Witt, for one, suggested that white nationalist support might backfire.

He noted that it was the 2015 murder of nine African-American churchgoers in Charleston, S.C., by a white supremacist that led to the removal of the Confederate flag from statehouse grounds.

“The amazing thing is that the president is doing more to endanger historical monuments than most of the protesters,” he said. “The alt-right is producing a world where there is more pressure to remove monuments, rather than less.”

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Solzhenitsyn on good and evil

“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?”
― Aleksandr SolzhenitsynThe Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956

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What Is Trump’s Relationship With White Nationalism? (theonion.com)

Since the weekend’s violent protests in Charlottesville, VA, many have criticized President Trump for his failure to outright condemn the white supremacists involved. The Onion breaks down Trump’s relationship to this powerful hate group.

  • Q: What evidence is there that Trump has ties to white supremacy groups?
  • A: The president maintains a 36 percent approval rating.
  • Q: Why has Trump’s response to these demonstrations angered the public?
  • A: Americans demand much subtler displays of racism from their elected officials.
  • Q: What has the president done to distance himself from white nationalism?
  • A: Married a Slovenian woman, thereby diluting his pure Anglo-Aryan lineage with the blood of a lesser Slav.
  • Q: Doesn’t Trump appointee Jeff Sessions have ties to right-wing extremist groups?
  • A: You’re probably thinking of Steve Bannon, Stephen Miller, or Sebastian Gorka.
  • Q: What is his position on monuments memorializing Civil War veterans?
  • A: Trump has been consistently in favor of Confederate statues despite a historical antipathy toward losers.
  • Q: Were there any signs during his presidential campaign that Trump might embrace white nationalism?
  • A: None come to mind.
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