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EU orders global sweep of diplomatic missions after US spying reports

Posted on July 1st, 2013 at 22:43 by John Sinteur in category: News


The European Union has ordered a worldwide security sweep of all its premises following reports US intelligence has bugged its offices in Washington, Brussels and the United Nations.

Jose Manuel Barroso, president of the EU’s Executive Commission, “has instructed the competent commission services to proceed to a comprehensive ad hoc security sweep and check” in light of the most recent spying allegations leveled at the US, spokeswoman Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen told reporters.

The sweep follows a report by German weekly Der Spiegel, based on revelations by fugitive whistleblower Edward Snowden, that the National Security Agency [NSA] bugged EU offices and gained access to EU internal computer networks.

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It Only Took Rachel Maddow 48 Seconds To Tear Down An Anti-Gay Zealot’s Outdated Ideas On Marriage

Posted on July 1st, 2013 at 22:41 by Paul Jay in category: News


If you think that these overzealous gentlemen maybe should focus on talking about something that actually helps improve their country rather than minding other people’s business, you could share and tweet this. Totally up to you, though.

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  1. Dr. Johnson said that “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel”. It appears that the “Think of the children!” argument is right next door.

James Clapper is still lying to America – Salon.com

Posted on July 1st, 2013 at 22:30 by John Sinteur in category: News


“James Clapper Is Still Lying”: That would be a more honest headline for yesterday’s big Washington Post article about the director of national intelligence’s letter to the U.S. Senate.

Clapper, you may recall, unequivocally said “no, sir” in response to Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., asking him: “Does the NSA collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?” Clapper’s response was shown to be a lie by Snowden’s disclosures, as well as by reports from the Guardian, the Washington Post, the Associated Press and Bloomberg News (among others). This is particularly significant, considering lying before Congress prevents the legislative branch from performing oversight and is therefore a felony.

Upon Snowden’s disclosures, Clapper initially explained his lie by insisting that his answer was carefully and deliberately calculated to be the “least most untruthful” response to a question about classified information. Left unmentioned was the fact that he could have simply given the same truthful answer that Alberto Gonzales gave the committee in 2006.

Now, though, Clapper is wholly changing his story, insisting that his answer wasn’t a deliberate, carefully calibrated “least most untruthful” response; it was instead just a spur-of-the-moment accident based on an innocent misunderstanding. Indeed, as the Post reports, “Clapper sent a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee on June 21 saying that he had misunderstood the question he had been asked” and adding that “he thought Wyden was referring to NSA surveillance of e-mail traffic involving overseas targets, not the separate program in which the agency is authorized to collect records of Americans’ phone calls.” In his letter, Clapper says, “My response was clearly erroneous — for which I apologize,” and added that “mistakes will happen, and when I make one, I correct it.”

So Clapper first says it was a calculated move, and now he’s saying it was just an innocuous misunderstanding and an inadvertent error. With that, the public — and the Obama administration prosecutors who aggressively pursue perjurers — are all supposed to now breathe a sigh of relief and chalk it all up to a forgivable screw-up. It’s all just an innocent mistake, right?

Wrong, because in this crime, as Clapper’s changing story suggests, there remains a smoking gun.

Notice this statement from Sen. Wyden about Snowden’s disclosures — a statement, mind you, that the Post didn’t reference in its story yesterday (emphasis added):

“One of the most important responsibilities a Senator has is oversight of the intelligence community. This job cannot be done responsibly if Senators aren’t getting straight answers to direct questions. When NSA Director Alexander failed to clarify previous public statements about domestic surveillance, it was necessary to put the question to the Director of National Intelligence. So that he would be prepared to answer, I sent the question to Director Clapper’s office a day in advance. After the hearing was over my staff and I gave his office a chance to amend his answer.

So Clapper had a full day’s notice of the specific — and impossible to misunderstand — question Wyden asked, and is nonetheless now claiming that in the heat of the moment he spontaneously misunderstood the question. In other words, he’s not coming clean, as the Post story seems to imply. On the contrary, he’s lying about his deliberate lie, which should only make a perjury prosecution that much easier, for it shows intent.

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  1. Or in the immortal words of Lewis Carrol – “Off with his head!”…

  2. Ah yes, that old “economical with the truth” defense. Decapitation’s too good for him. I suggest that he be allowed to consider the error of his ways in a prison cell.

Collective History

Posted on July 1st, 2013 at 18:38 by John Sinteur in category: Great Picture



The smallest shop in London – a shoe salesman with a 1.2 square meter shoe store, 1900.

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  1. …and it appears that the important selling point of the (used) shoes are the good state of the soles and heels.


Posted on July 1st, 2013 at 16:18 by John Sinteur in category: Cartoon

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