#occupy homeland security

What’s Really Behind the Nationwide Raids Against #OWS

Mr. Toad's Wild Anti-Corporate-Warfare/Welfare RideFor a decade now, the Department of Homeland Security has coordinated the law enforcement efforts of America’s major cities, both through the U.S. Conference of Mayors and through a direct network of the nation’s big city police chiefs. And yet, there was widespread “mainstream media” suspicion when reports surfaced of coordinated national assaults against the economic-justice protests. Why would a public so used to illegal federal wiretapping and constant physical surveillance of U.S. Muslim communities and infiltration of anti-war groups in America be surprised by the fact that federal law enforcement agencies were working to stop nationwide protests against the political/economic regime? Isn’t that their job, to stop their corrupt regime from being toppled?

Naomi Wolf looks into this, for The Guardian, because of course American papers aren’t going to touch this:

In other words, for the DHS to be on a call with mayors, the logic of its chain of command and accountability implies that congressional overseers, with the blessing of the White House, told the DHS to authorise mayors to order their police forces – pumped up with millions of dollars of hardware and training from the DHS – to make war on peaceful citizens.

But wait: why on earth would Congress advise violent militarised reactions against its own peaceful constituents? The answer is straightforward: in recent years, members of Congress have started entering the system as members of the middle class (or upper middle class) – but they are leaving DC privy to vast personal wealth, as we see from the “scandal” of presidential contender Newt Gingrich’s having been paid $1.8m for a few hours’ “consulting” to special interests. The inflated fees to lawmakers who turn lobbyists are common knowledge, but the notion that congressmen and women are legislating their own companies’ profits is less widely known – and if the books were to be opened, they would surely reveal corruption on a Wall Street spectrum. Indeed, we do already know that congresspeople are massively profiting from trading on non-public information they have on companies about which they are legislating – a form of insider trading that sent Martha Stewart to jail.

So, the fascist insect Peter King is launching DHS against #OWS because King and the rest of his crooked scum buddies in Congress will ultimately pay for their crimes, if the protests aren’t crushed now. Is that the theory? Sounds sane to us, although we don’t remember the part where Martha Stewart was guillotined. [The Guardian]

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148 comments

  1. memzilla

    The best way to find out what's going on in America is to rely on non-American, non-Murdoch media. [Wonkette's servers are located in a secure non-disclosed location, possibly Uzbeki-beki-beki-etc.]

  2. Barb

    Yes, Martha Stewart was such a bad ass. I remember the day that she went to prison the terror threat level went from orange to pesto.

    1. memzilla

      Some years ago, outside of Penn Station, a CNN crew made the mistake of asking if I thought Martha was guilty. "She used to be a stockbroker, right?" I asked with an evil grin. "One of the Series 7 questions, you have to define 'material non-public information.' She knew exactly what she was doing. Guilty, guilty, guilty!"

      The CNN intern thanked me with a half-fearful smile ("Can we air this?"), and Martha went to jail shortly thereafter.

      1. Tundra Grifter

        memzilla:

        WADR, I'm not convinced Ms. Stewart was really guilty. I think she was a very public example – but, like Leona Helmsley, there are lingering questions about her actual guilt.

        Mrs. Helmsley, of course, went to prison for being perceived as being a bitch. Unpleasant, perhaps, but hardly illegal.

        1. swordfis

          Martha Stewart was a major contributor to the Democratic Party. Her mistake was not to get elected to Congress so she could do the same crap that she was accused of but on an infinitely grander scale. And then prosecute small fry.

        2. tessiee

          "Mrs. Helmsley, of course, went to prison for being perceived as being a bitch. Unpleasant, perhaps, but hardly illegal."

          As I write this, there are at least one hundred white male upper-class CEOs who are bigger bitches than Leona Helmsley and Martha Stewart put together who will not only never spend one minute in jail (irrespective of any crimes they may or may not have committed), but will earn near-worship for being "ambitious", "go-getters", and all the other words that the top 1% and their stockholm syndrome fans use to describe sociopaths.

        1. OneDollarJuana

          Martha Stewart went to prison not just because she lied. She was lying liberal. An unpardonable sin.

          1. AmericanBeauty

            Yes. Martha is an uppity, successful WOMAN, unconnected with Goldman Sachs and the rest of the vampire squid. She was expendable to make an example of to the plebes and to other uppity women.

          1. finallyhappy

            Oh, I agree but we used to use her story as an example to grantees about lying to us – it was my scientist/attorney colleague who would tell her story.

        2. Master Janitor V572

          There use to be thing called "the Fifth Amendment" that gave you the right to the "exculpatory lie," meaning that, if you're charged with murder, deny it on the stand, and then are convicted, they can't also charge you with perjury. Thank goodness we got rid of that inconvenience.

    2. tessiee

      "Yes, Martha Stewart was such a bad ass"

      Make fun if you will, but not everyone can make a shiv out of a melon baller.

      1. user-of-owls

        And seriously, who else but Martha would ever have thought to use a green tea infusion in their pruno recipe?

  3. CrunchyKnee

    I have no snark for this. Now the Obama "lib'rals" are jumping all over Wolf and Moore for these stories. Which to me makes them quite probable. Protest is okay in brown foreign countries, but not here.

    1. OneDollarJuana

      Obama-bots who actually believe the way he does are not liberals. At best, they are centrists, at worst , moderate right-wingers. So of course Obama "liberals" are criticizing Wolf and Moore for actually espousing leftist opinions.

      Once again, I will hold my nose and vote for Obama, trying to take the long view, and working for the day when sensibility and justice regain power.

      1. MissNancyPriss

        I for one, am happily voting for him again, if for only making Blue Cross eliminate the freaking "cap" I never knew I had. And for lots of other reasons.

      2. Redhead

        Wait whaaaaaaaaat? Obama's a centrist moderate right-winger?

        But I thought he was a facist-communist-socialist-nazi-atheist-muslin. You mean Faux News lied to me?

      3. vulpes82

        Why THANK YOU for revealing my right-winged-ness! I had totally thought I was a commie pinko Islamofascist all this time. In reality, I'm just a running dog of the capitalist pigs ruining America.

        1. DarwinianDemon

          Mark it down, the day journalistic integrity (like clicking the reference link supplied to see if it actually says what the headline claims it does) was classified as "right wing". Christ…I am too old for this shit.

      4. Golfing_OJ

        Sorry, but I refuse to waste my vote this time. Obama has done next to nothing. If the #OWS guys so much as put up a janitor in drag, he's my guy.

  4. Barrelhse

    You don't have to be an Arab to want Spring. Apparently these fascist motherfuckers think it can't happen here, but I think it can. People are tired of being abused to enrich the pigs.

    1. KeepFnThatChicken

      …and there's no shortage of lazy armchair pundits sitting at the infinite number of keyboards on fucking Facebook.

      (excluding myself, of course)

  5. OCcupied_Surf_Serf

    We live in a nation where law enforcement has become a profit golden cow. We bust poor people who smoke a little weed to get through their oppressed lives and jail them in private-run prisons geared towards a profit margin which is used to buy judges so they can fill the new jails.

    1. Tundra Grifter

      OCSS:

      And, unfortunately, more and more law enforcement is using the mililtary model. I don't think that is a healthy trend.

    1. BarackMyWorld

      That rebuttal's pretty weak, but when the media gets around to reporting it, they'll concentrate on the controversy (no matter how weak one side's evidence is) and not the underlying issue.

  6. Danzig!

    Meanwhile, Alternet points out that they never broke the story that Wolf claimed they did – http://joshholland.blogspot.com/2011/11/naomi-wol

    So it's a question of which explanation for the police backlash against OWS you prefer- (A) a complex mixture of free-floating cultural antipathy towards leftist activism / staunchly conservative siege mentality within all levels of law enforcement / self-critical, hothouse flower Centrism in the Jon Stewart mold / corporate control of 24-hour newsmedia / widespread conservative and libertarian support for the cavalier finance sector / citizen apathy, in other words, a vast structural problem, or (B) a Star Chamber Conspiracy within the government controlling everything from the shadows and acting in their own personal monetary interest over ideological, cultural or political concerns, in other words, the same people who staged 9/11.

    1. flamingpdog

      I don't really care whether heads are getting busted because of local antipathy toward leftist activism or because of direction from the Obama Administration. Heads are getting busted, and the ones doing the busting need to be jailed.

      1. Danzig!

        You'll hear no argument from me! I'd rather people's focus be on exposing systemic police abuses than the Cigarette Smoking Man, that's all.

    2. snarkycomments

      What? I don't get to choose one from column A and one from column B? What kind of Chinese restaurant is this anyway?

  7. AlterNewt

    Law Enforcement can not stand idly by while these radicals engage in 'aggressive sitting' tactics, and who-knows-what-all.

    1. flamingpdog

      AMPHIBIAN LIBEL!!!1!

      OK, I didn't see the original post before it was deleted, so I'm kind of presuming.

  8. flamingpdog

    Darwin knows I'm no defender of Preznit Barry and our Clown Congress, but I'm a little leery of this one. I read Naomi Wolf's "The End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot" when it came out. It was an enjoyable read, but a little over the top, to me, anyway.

    1. Danzig!

      Far as I'm concerned she's just a notch or two above Camille Paglia on the list of people worth paying attention to (Camille Paglia is at the bottom of the list, btw). She's pretty well known for not being too rigorous in her reasoning or research.

  9. FatalServerErrorFace

    There's a moment, only a moment, in the cell phone video of grandpa, face down and bleeding into the mall floor, having been brutalized by three (?!) cops for "shoplifting" a video game – while his grandson was with him, where the citizens, who are starting to really yell at the cops, might actually have done something physical. I swear there was fear in their eyes – and not just fear of their corporate masters, but fear from personal danger. The moment passed, this time, but maybe next time the assault will be more egregious, maybe pepper spray grandson too. When that happens in the middle of the mall, and the cell phone video shows the beat down, not just the aftermath, maybe there will be a real reaction against these lickspittle bullying assholes.

    1. Negropolis

      I have found myself trying to muster sympathy for that particular case, but it's so incredibly hard. It's hard to have sympathy for folks that subject themselves (and in this case their children and grandchildren) to the cattle call that is Black Friday. I will not excuse police brutality, and I do hope he sues the fuck out of them, but I also hope he takes a bit more responsibility for himself in the future. The minute to line up for the cattle call you've already lost half your dignity.

      Two seperate issues, I know, but I thought I needed to say that. This Black Friday shit has finally really started to grate on me. I used to just shake my head; now, I'm just angry. The deeper to we fall into ruin, and the more this stuff happens, I just can't make any sense of it.

      1. tessiee

        "The deeper to we fall into ruin, and the more this stuff happens, I just can't make any sense of it."

        The idea of "bread and circuses" to distract the rabble goes back to the days of the Roman Empire, and the less there is of the former, the more we get of the latter.

  10. sati_demise

    Well, someone is just going to have to file a FOIA request in order to get the transcript of the "assistance" given by Homeland Security board & Perf and Chuck Wexler and all the FBI, et al on this board.
    Would like a transcript of that talk the Mayors had too.

    Just the transcripts, that is all.

  11. Extemporanus

    Keep ratfuckin' that chicken, Junior:

    Here are the two links she provides as evidence: One to Wonkette [?!!] ; the other to Washingtonsblog.com. Both articles point back to this absurd article on the Examiner.com site (a very, very right-wing Phil Anschutz, write-out-of-your-butt-with-no-evidence kind of site). Washingtonsblog goes one step further, updating with this:

    "(And for those who are understandably doubtful about Examiner.com as a news source,here’s an AP story from a couple hours ago that verifies everything except the specific mention of DHS coordination.)"

    Got that? The headlines on both of these stories (Wonkette and WashingtonsBlog) were splayed across the sites in very large heading fonts: “Homeland Security Coordinated….” and yet the AP confirms everything BUT DHS coordination. Still, that didn’t stop Wolf from ignoring the AP story entirely and writing a piece for the Guardian that included links to bolster her argument that clearly don’t.

    Why? I reiterate. No one has a source, no one has any evidence, and the originating story which Michael Moore and now Naomi Wolf breathlessly spread quotes an anonymous source with the promise of still more to come in the future. Well, it’s the future. It’s two weeks later and crickets from Mr. Ellis. Mission accomplished, though. Ask people who are paying attention to the OWS movement and they’ll swear up and down that yes, it was coordinated by DHS because MICHAEL MOORE and now NAOMI WOLF say so.

    1. sati_demise

      yea, I read crap like that. but they do not have any proof, either. So, lets have the phone transcripts.

      I do not know anyone who believes this because of MM or NW. We believe it because of our experiences with state & federal power and our knowledge of history.

      1. Extemporanus

        A discussion concerning the plausibility of these assertions is entirely valid, and — especially considering the closing sentiments of your comment — one that would likely find many among us in agreement.

        However, a discussion that starts from a place where such sentiments are assumed to supersede facts incomplete, contradictory, or — as is likely the case in this instance — not yet in evidence is, I would respectfully suggest, utterly self-destructive, and a disservice to the cause.

        We're better than that, you guys. Or at least we used to be…

          1. Negropolis

            You know what, buddy? You've got more than a few screws loose, I've noticed. This is the second time you've mentioned John Lennon in this thread, and all of your posts on OWS have been something a little more than strange. If you have an agenda, that's fine, but we can do without your crazy judgements.

            Most damning of all is that you seem to be without any kind of a snark on a site built around snark. If you're one of those Truthers, or related kin, well, you can peddle that bullshit, eslewhere.

          2. sati_demise

            Still mad that I snarked about Michelle, amirite?

            Guess John Lennon is another one on your own personal "do not snark' list.

            You know what my user name means, right?

          3. Beanball

            I followed your helpful hint and Google'd sati. Apparently it's actually "Sati," which had previously gone right over my head.

            With all due respect, might I suggest a more lighthearted moniker? This is allegedly a humor blog, after all.

    2. LiveToServeYa

      Yes. Wonkette isn't very critical about the shit it uses to stir up the readership. Needs more funny and buttsex.

    3. donner_froh

      That Naomi Wolf's article was garbage is unfortunate because it allows those who are interested in doing so the chance to attack her lack of sourcing and general hysteria without having to address the simultaneous crackdown on occupations throughout the country at about the same time.

      The overriding reality is that billy clubs were swung and pepper spray used from Portland to New York, not that Naomi Wolf (or Micheal Moore) wrote something stupid.

      1. tessiee

        It's kinda like when Dan Rather quoted from a memo that said Duhbya was a drunk, cokehead draft dodger, and the loyal opposition jumped all over his (Rather's) shit because the memo had the wrong kind of paper/type font/what the fuck ever, thereby proving to their "minds" that the *factual content* of the memo was incorrect, even though there was other documentation for said content. They'll pick any nit they can find to discredit our arguments, and while that would be equally true of a completely flawless assertion, why make their job easier for them?

    4. tessiee

      Yes, and also Doonesbury quoted an uncomplimentary remark from a book that hadn't been published, oh these liberals and their unverifiable statements, wah wah wah!

  12. succalina

    I'm not, for once, reading the comments. I dont care about Martha, or whatevs. All I can say is I can't wait (really) for my terminal illness to commence where I can go all f'ing post medieval on asses that pull this shit. I may only get one, but i will die happy.

  13. imissopus

    In other words, for the DHS to be on a call with mayors, the logic of its chain of command and accountability implies that congressional overseers, with the blessing of the White House, told the DHS to authorise mayors to order their police forces – pumped up with millions of dollars of hardware and training from the DHS – to make war on peaceful citizens.

    She forgot the reverse vampires.

  14. Arken

    People just are not getting into the police's new program to feed the homeless in the tent cities en masse with delicious pepper.

  15. donner_froh

    The bourgeoisie and their screeching, feces-flinging lackeys must be more concerned about OWS than they would like people to realize. They know one way to deal with dissent/rebellion/radical organizing: brute force, the policeman's truncheon or a face full of pepper spray.

    They don't realize–or do realize but can't do anything about–the fact that this isn't 1968: everyone with a smart phone has a video camera and a platform to upload the images; they no longer have a monopoly on rapid communication and a smaller percentage of the population support them.

    1. ManchuCandidate

      Of course they are. They tried ignoring them. They tried mocking them. And what did it get them? More discussion on income equality. The realization by many of the 99% has been fucked up the ass. And it's getting worse. Now they've panicked and started beating them.

      1. tessiee

        Someone that I'm too lazy to attribute made the observation that every movement for social change — the abolition of slavery, the vote for women, anti-war, pro-environment, etc. — has started out as a "fringe" movement led by a "crackpot", and gone on to gain ground from there. Whether abolitionist John Brown was a "crackpot", or whether it served the interests of the powers that be at any given point in history to mock/minimize/demonize movements that advocated change (and therefore potentially threatened their power), or both, I think OWS could fairly be considered to fit within the pattern.

  16. El Pinche

    Just tell me when to set-up the guillotine. I don't need a strong case, and I have a list. eg #sambleedsalot

    1. El Pinche

      I'm beginning to doubt Wonkette's journalism. I'm disappointed there was no story here on Anthony Weiner's new creepy stach. Westbrook Pegler is rolling in his grave, I tell ya.

      1. tessiee

        People who live in a cave on a remote mountaintop, and are also deaf, dumb, blind, and leotarded, are more informed than people who get all their news from Fox.

  17. Negropolis

    Can I be honest? For as evil as Congress is, they are also a generally lazy and dumb body. To think that Congress is running this operation is silly. You might have a committee chair and another member he or she trusts privy to some info and approving for it, but generally, Congress (even the smaller committees) doesn't know what the fuck is going on outside of Washington, let alone enough to be painted as some collective evil genius. I think this is a bit too conspiracy theory theater, here. I'd be more willing to stick this on the executive branch before I even considered that Congress was leading this.

    BTW, did not know this:

    both through the U.S. Conference of Mayors…

    I'd always thought them a benign social organization. Looks like they finally got around to using it for something other than holding banal conference in Tampa or some shit.

    1. sati_demise

      And then the Perf call to police chiefs. And the 'retired' FBI heads (does anyone ever really retire from the FBI?)
      Sure it is all tangental at this point. Just like John Lennon being monitored by the FBI. Or the Quakers being infiltrated by same. We have a long history of FED involvement with DFHs.

    2. donner_froh

      The fucks in the House and Senate can't agree on a lunch order–no way they could do anything involving actual planning, keeping quiet about it and following through.

  18. BarackMyWorld

    Whether the simultaneous crackdown was planned or coincidence, the underlying points and issues in the piece are solid and (possibly for some) eye-opening.

    1. Danzig!

      Frankly I'd think it would be difficult for someone uninformed to focus on the meaty parts of the editorial, mixed in as it is with so much baseless horseshit.

  19. donner_froh

    Exactly right on plan vs. coincidence. It happened all across the country at about the same time and with more force than was necessary to carry out the putative mission. It isn't a choice between whether an evil cabal planned and executed the assaults or whether all the mayors and police chiefs got the same idea at the same time–the reality is that the assaults happened and that they were the response from the 1%.

    1. Negropolis

      I happen to think it was coordinated, but completely agree that the central point is what ended up happening and not how it happened. It'd really help, then, for folks like Naomi to not delve into the nebulous "how" as the central point in all of this. It's distracting unless there is some seriously sourced evidence for the premise.

  20. Chichikovovich

    Naomi Wolf is one of the rare artists of the written word who has the gift of making me less convinced of a position than I was when I started trudging along her Burma Railroad of reasoning. And so here. I found it pretty obvious that there was a some clear links among the different forces. The tactics were too similar, the timing of certain key raids to closely matched. (Even down to the fashion statements. Always good to know what's "in" these days in jackboot and faceshield wear.) So Bob's your uncle, thinks I. Clearly working from the same playbook, clearly some coordination. I'd guess FBI or DHS.

    [I personally thought it must be DHS, because now that I'm a citizen instead of a green card holder, it freed up the entire office of people that was (I am convinced) devoted to finding ways to harass me with further silly requirements and long forms to fill out, plus the usual losing forms by mailing them to the wrong city, failing to update websites, with the result that I bring the wrong form to the wrong office in the wrong city at the wrong time, etc. They had to find something new to fill that unit's time.]

    So then I read Ms. Wolf's firey screed and I think "man, this is the worst supported, least disciplined series of arguments for a fundamentally wacky position that I've ever read in the Guardian. (Citing Wonkette Free Nation as an authority on anything except the proper spelling of buttsechz is already a troubling sign.) "Is this really what I believe?" my inner voice asks me. "It seems kind of stupid when I look at it in this light."

    So now I think the coordination thesis is as likely as not. I hope Wolf never tries to convince me that 2+2=4.

    1. Beanball

      As you yourself pointed out in another thread, the police use of pepper spray (all their tactics, actually) are in line with "FBI guidelines." We don't have access to those guidelines, but at a guess I'd say that those guidelines go something like this:

      1) Wait until everybody is seated
      2) Announce dispersal order
      3) Without further ado, pepper spray/beat the fuck out of them with whatever weapons are at hand
      4) ???
      5) Profit !

      1. tessiee

        ""FBI guidelines." We don't have access to those guidelines, but at a guess I'd say that those guidelines go something like this:

        1) Wait until everybody is seated
        2) Announce dispersal order
        3) Without further ado, pepper spray/beat the fuck out of them with whatever weapons are at hand
        4) ???
        5) Profit ! "

        I forget — Is Step 4 "kill all the negroes" or "kill all the homos"?

    2. Chichikovovich

      I should have made the snark tags more explicit. As I said, I found it overwhelmingly plausible that there was some such coordination, just based on observed coincidences and previous behavior. Wolf's article didn't really cause me to doubt that, just as Wolf defending 2+2=4 wouldn't cause me to doubt that. But (no snark) Wolf's article is really, really bad.

    3. Chet Kincaid

      Assumptions and speculations: Don't local police forces belong to many of the same national associations and professional organizations, and have access to training in tactics from federal sources? If so, is it surprising that a bunch of cities all use the same tactics and equipment in clearing protestors?

  21. Beanball

    Correlation is not the same as causality. BUT. Something sure stinks about this whole affair.

    Of course, it could just have been a field test for the Industrial Pepper Spray R&D department that got out of hand..

  22. Antispandex

    "…because of course American papers aren’t going to touch this"

    Hell no! There is an old saying about knowing, and bread, and who butters it. Sorry. I was sounding like one of those "conspiracy nuts" there for a second. Let's just stop asking questioins about it. I'm sure it's fine.

  23. SarahsBush

    Okay, so…umm…I don't know if I have any responsibility in this, but I did tip this to Wonkette, so I don't really want to leave Jr. hanging out to dry here (though I will admit, a big reason why I tipped it is because I just thought it was KIND OF AWESOME that Wonkette was cited as a source). I was a little worked up about hearing about my local Occupy being dismantled when I read it, so perhaps my judgement wasn't entirely clear, and after giving it a re-read, yeah, it is a little more of a stretch than I first thought. But…

    First, for all of you people who are bashing the idea of Wonkette being a credible source, keep in mind that Wonkette does cite all of it's sources. Yes, there is a lot of opinion here, so it's not "water-tight" credibility by any means, but it's opinion based on a reference. Op-eds are referenced all the time (the media fucking loves pundits!). The ones that have an ounce of credibility are the ones that cite what their opinions are based on.

    Second, Naomi Wolf makes it pretty goddamn clear that she's speculating in this article. When you use the phrase "putting the puzzle pieces together" multiple times, you are making it clear that you are making assumptions. As far as I am concerned, she's raising questions that she thinks need to be asked. I don't have a problem with that.

    And finally, her main point is something that I don't think she is wrong about: the reason why there is so much hostility toward the Occupados from our cherished governments is because of what they stand for. They want the money out of politics, and they want the rich assholes who make that money to stop being dicks about how they do it. The politicians in power don't. They rely on that money, and they rely on doing favors for their rich donors to keep that money coming in. The Tea Party, for all their assholian bullshit, didn't threaten them as seriously as that. And because of that, it shouldn't surprise anyone their tactics are so extreme.

    As Beanball said, correlation is not the same as causality. But correlation is also not something to be ignored; in fact, it's plenty of reason to find out what the correlation is, if any. Sure, there's a bit of bullshit on Wolf's part, but as long as the authorities we elect and turn to for answers give us nothing but bullshit (and pepper spray and batons and tear gas and fake "health and safety"), well then, all you have is bullshit to work with.

    That's as eloquent as I can be at this hour. BULLSHIT.

    1. RadiosTyrone

      The teabggers were seamlessly integrated into the right Wing of the Repub party, under a pre-fab Capitalist method of moneyed infusion and a few "leader/middle management" types to get this sham through the 2010 elections.
      Occupy doesn't follow the rules, so they must be crushed by a Fatherland Security, Obama Administration sanctioned nonetheless.

    2. Negropolis

      I honestly, don't get what this is in reference to. Sounds to me like the responses to this here at Wonkette have been an argument over process rather than result. It seems to me that most people, at the very least, have a very strong suspicion that this was coordinated…but that Wolf took far too many liberties and took a few too many journalistic shortcuts for her particular piece to pass muster as a cogent argument about the "who" in this case or about the level of coordination. You can be wrong for the right reasons and right for the wrong reasons. At least, that's the only point I've ever tried to make.

      I happen to believe that it'd be naive to believe given the timing and tactics used that this wasn't coordinated on some level. I'm just not sure Ms. Wolf made the best argument you could have made, that's all.

      BTW, I totally think you missed the point about citing Wonkette. It's not whether we cite news or opinion; it's a question of how good the source is that we site to begin with, whether it be news or opinion. Not all citations are equally valid or credible given that not all sources are equally valid and credible. If I remember correctly, in the particular case we're talking about Naomi is citing a source that Wonkette cited, even after a later correcton by Wonkette pretty much admitting that they have a source for everything but the entire premise of the original thread (coordination by the DHS). You know, besides that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the show? So, from there on out we simply treated the thing as snark and speculation.

      So, if anyone was going to cite that Wonkette post, at all, after that fact, it probably should have been in the context that other liberals in the blogosphere has sneaking suspicions that this was federally coordinated, not that we had definitive proof, or even enough evidence that this was the case.

      1. Chichikovovich

        Agreed. I would just add that not only did Wonkette run the correction you mentioned, but in the comments to the article, many commenters remarked on the shakiness of the support for the core claim. (Which is not to say that the core claim isn't extremely plausible. Just that the sources cited did nothing to add to that antecedent plausibility.)

      2. DarwinianDemon

        It's like you scooped my brain goo out with a melon baller, dude. Thank you for putting it so eloquently.

  24. datateday

    Just the fact that it took a few weeks before the mayors started up against the protesters suggests that something's up here…

  25. swordfis

    O my god – we have to hide under our collective bed to escape the Obama police state, just like we did during the Red Scare. Certainly the attacks are coordinated by some Homeland Security apparatus, but Wolf's totalizing-and undocumented-claim strikes me as paranoid. (But as Oscar Levant said, even paranoids have enemies.) There's lots wrong with the US government at this point: but it's not a police state. China is a police state, rigidly and totally organized from the top down. (No Wonkette in China.) But there are certainly enough US fascists to keep everyone busy.

    America has been through worse before: the Civil War, the anti- immigrant/anarchist period, the McCarthy period, America Firsters, 10,000 lynchings between 1890-1910 – you can supply your own horror story. But there has always been a progressive movement that opposed and prevailed. Sorry for the sermon, but I think the paranoid style is a distraction and a discouragement and feeds into the right wing's paranoia and its propaganda machine.

  26. sati_demise

    Oh dear, yes, America has had some terrible times in history, but time is a river. If you soberly assess the problems now, they are not just in America, they are global.
    One of the founders of Occupy Wall Street:

    VLAD TEICHBERG: Well, my specific job was I was a derivatives trader. I was basically working for large banks, betting basically their money on these derivatives products. And my job was sort understanding how these products worked, really [inaudible] to the level of models, that used to price them, but also figuring out what models didn’t work and so on.

    For me, the philosophical transformation was the—basically the whole globalization philosophy that was being pushed in the early mid-'90s, that would ultimately be—ultimate equalizer of the world turned out to be faulty because of the effective Multinationals. Towards the late ’90s, I mean, I think a lot of people came to the same conclusion: globalization was actually doing more harm than good, and there was more inequality in the world. And by late—by late ’90s, it was very, very clear that that was the case. And that's pretty much when I started shifting out of being a supporter of this Ayn Rand approach to looking at the world.
    Watch the rest of the interview here:
    http://www.democracynow.org/2011/11/18/the_revolu

    So, thats the current challenge.

  27. ttommyunger

    As a former Federal Whistle-Blower ( I went directly to the FBI rather than move it up my chain of command) who survived the experience I can state that this is the only way to combat the type of institutionalized corruption endemic to our Government today. 'Course, it requires some integrity and guts at some levels, not an expanding commodity.

      1. ttommyunger

        A clear conscience, a bad rap with “The Company” and the potential for a shitload of personal and professional grief.

  28. lulzmonger

    Regimes gotta regime!

    Breathless abstruse narrative slop from starbursty/truthiness-enhanced media darlings notwithstanding, LE coordinates regionally or nationally (& internationally) as a matter of course.

    Pigs choreographing their latest festival of DFH-abuse doesn't peg my sinister-o-meter the way that all of the ruthlessly cracking down on whistleblowers does. Bush was brutally enthusiastic about it, & Obama is worse. Whistleblowers are essentially society's immune system, & once it atrophies far enough, that whole Eating Your Young While Worshipping Volcanoes millieux becomes hip & sexy.

    Women & children first … in line to be reclassified as chattel.

    1. sati_demise

      So true, and part of the whole.

      Face it, a few Multinational financial corporations have effectively shut down Wikileaks by cutting off 95% of their donations.

      Well said.

  29. tessiee

    "The US has only 1.3 parties because your votes tell the politicians that you will put up with 1.3 parties, one right wing and one very right wing"

    While I basically agree wtih you in principle, we've all seen how it worked in practice. The Nader crowd in 2000 said things like, "Americans shouldn't settle for voting for the lesser of two evils" and (this one's a real knee-slapper in retrospect), "There wouldn't be *that* much difference between Bush and Gore anyway".

    Again, I don't DIS-agree with you, I just think that holding my nose and voting for the lesser of two evils is the way to keep the greater of two evils out of office.

  30. Neilist_Returns

    The link was to the famous photo of General Jurgen Stroop supervising the "removal" of the "Occupy Warsaw" encampment.

    (I'm sure you all have copies in your scrapbooks. So I won't try to repair the link.)

    As of about 7:00 pm this evening, the media seemed to outnumber the cops. But the latter probably will stage from the LAPD Academy grounds up by Dodger Stadium, which is about 1750 meters from City Hall (and about 750 meters from me). So they should be able to flood the area with Los Angeles' answer to the Waffen SS without too much trouble.

    On the other hand, there was talk about having a rally or whatever in support. So with a little bit of luck, the whole thing could degenerate into a Truly Massive Sh&!T Show right around the time the Claudius' ghost usually shows up.

    "Speak to it, Horatio!"

  31. sati_demise

    Let me get this straight,
    first LA offers to find housing for all the homeless bastards that are being treated like human beings for the first time in ages at the OWS encampment,
    a promise of some land to replace the coop farm the city stole from the people to sell to a crooked developer who then refused to take 5 million bucks for it from the poors fund raising campaign so he could utterly destroy the garden for fun,
    and an indoor space for OWS next to city hall.

    Then OLA refused the offer that was rescinded by the city.
    And now there is gonna be some head busting tonight.

    Word is Philly is going down tonight too.

    W.N.vN.- your link is broken

  32. Neilist_Returns

    "Then OLA refused the offer that was rescinded by the city. "

    Update: His HIspanic Honorness is now disclaiming there was any such "offer."

    As if one could ever trust a 'Mexskin in the first place.

    So far, at 10:12 pm, there are some sirens, but no helicopter from the Air Support Division. I am waiting for the latter, as the "announcement" that the balloon is going up.

    I haven't been this excited since we invaded Polan . . . .::::Whoops::: . . . since those Evil Poles invaded the Reich!

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