A new ACLU report, “Policing Free Speech: Police Surveillance and Obstruction of First Amendment-Protected Activity,” documents recent cases of politically motivated surveillance across America — cases in which people were put under surveillance “for doing little more than peacefully exercising their First Amendment rights.”
Nine of 10 Americans Have Cell Phones, but Talking Isn?t All That Matters; Internet, Email, Important Attributes
Source: National Retail Federation
Cell phones are necessary tools by which many Americans get information these days, with an increasing number of people looking for phones which offer access to email, the internet, picture-taking and even calendars. New research, conducted by BIGresearch® for the National Retail Federation?s Mobile Retail Initiative shows an increasing number of people want to be ?tuned in? more than ever before.
By Patricia H. Kushlis
Was the U.S. military really so hard up for experienced career public affairs advisers that General Stanley McChrystal had to turn to a civilian on contract with minimal public affairs experience, a possibly questionable employment record and, for that matter, no long term commitment to the U.S. government ? military or civilian ? as his chief public affairs adviser? Not only did it show terrible judgment on McChrystal?s part in selecting Duncan Boothby for the demanding position but also dereliction on the part of the US military and the Department of Defense for letting it happen at all.
Perceiving the Subtext and the Context
First, let?s begin with the video that the Pentagon might have wanted to make this past Wednesday, 23 June, 2010, regarding President Barack Obama replacing General Stanley McChrystal after the comments the latter made to Rolling Stone. This video reflects the preferred order of events among militarists, and among those who?not so quietly anymore?wish for a transfer of political power to the military. It is also a blunter statement of the nature of U.S. power around the world.
McChrystal’s gone: who’s next?
In his speech announcing the general’s departure, President Barack Obama also gave other senior colleagues a dressing-down:
“I’ve just told my national security team that now is the time for all of us to come together. Doing so is not an option, but an obligation.”
By Patricia Lee Sharpe
So Obama had the guts to do it. Good. It had to be done. How can the troops do their job wholeheartedly if their commanding general and his closest aides are bad mouthing the whole Obama administration? The not-so-good General McChrystal and his circle were a veritable fountain of contempt?does anyone believe the quotes in Rolling Stone were the only such utterances?? which means the he and his clique were continuously, brazenly, massively sowing disaffection among their subordinates. Let?s be really blunt here. McChrystal was sowing the seeds of mutiny. By so relentlessly challenging civilian authority, he was setting the stage for justifying a military take over.
It was a tricky moment but President Obama has got this one right.
Sacking McChrystal looked tough. But on its own it would have been a move fraught with danger.
from FP Passport by David Kenner