Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Lieberman Resurrects McCarthyism???

WikiLeaks and Assange are currently the news of the day.  In fact the news today was overwhelming to digest. Especially in regards to freedom of speech, due process, and what actually would constitute a criminal offense.  TechDirt sample. And "Does Wikileaks Have a First Amendment Case Against Joe Lieberman?" by Ryan Radia and "Some thoughts on Cablegate" by Jerry Brito from the Technology Liberation Front.

What caught my attention today was a New York Times article where "In an interview with Fox News on Tuesday, Sen. Joe Lieberman suggested that the U.S. Department of Justice should charge Julian Assange with espionage and said that federal prosecutors should conduct a "very intensive inquiry" into the question of whether or not news organizations had committed a crime by publishing leaked documents obtained and distributed by WikiLeaks. ... According to a transcript of the interview, Mr. Lieberman, the chairman of the Senate's Homeland Security Committee, was asked by the Fox anchor Jenna Lee, "are other media outlets that have posted what WikiLeaks has put out there also culpable in this, and could be charged with something?"" (emphasis added).  Besides the strong suggestion for a criminal investigation, several companies such as Amazon.com and PayPal (a despicable company) have been strong armed into shunning WikiLeaks. Ryan Radia wrote: "Amazon’s decision to terminate Wikileaks came less than 24 hours after Amazon received a phone call from Senate Homeland Security Committee staff (at the behest of Sen. Joe Lieberman) inquiring about the firm’s relationship with Wikileaks." The Times even reports that "Columbia University warned students who hope to one day work as American diplomats to avoid posting any public comments about the recently leaked cables on the Web."

Like soap hurtful opera gossip, carefully constructed language is being created to intimidate the American people and to manipulate the truth.  Furthermore trumped up sex charges against on Assange are being manufactured.  Seems that Lieberman may be fanning the flames of false outrage to define Assange as an "enemy of the state" and  as a means of resurrecting McCarthyism. Wikipedia writes "McCarthyism is a term used to describe the making of accusations of disloyalty, subversion, or treason without proper regard for evidence.  ... During the post–World War II era of McCarthyism, many thousands of Americans were accused of being Communists or communist sympathizers and became the subject of aggressive investigations and questioning before government or private-industry panels, committees and agencies." If this crescendo continues we may soon see the reconstitution of the House Un-American Activities Committee as the Senate Un-American Activities Committee.

As an interesting aside, Glenn Beck in his show today expressed his belief that Assange is the victim of trumped-up charges.  Of course from Glenn Beck's perspective, Assange is actually a victim of some progressive left wing plot! Well at least Beck still has the capacity to understand a set-up.  A much better, no holds, case was made by Judge Napolitano who expressly stated that the Government is after Assange and that the US government, like the old USSR, is looking for evidence to persecute prosecute Assange. Judge Napolitano's presentation, I assume, will soon appear as a podcast.

To conclude, Ron Paul recently stated 'When Truth Becomes Treason We're In Big Trouble'.

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