Category: First Amendment

Big Brother is Watching..New Bill to Give Obama Control over Internet

Just when you thought it wouldn’t get worse, it does.  A pair of bills (Sen 773 & 778) have been introduced by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (W-WV) that would be a part what’s being called the “Cybersecurity Act of 2009”.  These bills would grant the White House sweeping new powers to access private data online, regulate the cybersecurity industry, and shut down portions of internet traffic if it deems there is an “emergency”.  A new office called the Office of the National Cybersecurity Advisor would be created and would report directly to the President.  Hmmm….wonder how I apply for that position.  Do I have to pay taxes to be considered?

For your enjoyment, here is a working draft of the bill:

This new Act raises …

Stimulating Religious Repression

For many of us, any number of things were expected as part of the new President’s first month in office, including the first five Executive Orders, some of which impacted protections of the unborn and the public at large.  And Democrats increased control of Congress will doubtfully lead to more and more spending that will help maintain the poverty status quo.

But many would never have expected to see a new effort on the part of Democrats to work their way around the First Amendment, which states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to

The View From Here Is Dreadful

I watched Friday’s John and Cindy McCain interview on The View.  Below is part 1; parts 2 and 3 should be accessible from the video.

I see several posts refering to this interview as “McCain Grilled On The View”, for instance this story at Huffpo, and this one at Century Of The Common Iowan.

A stretch to say the least.

First of all, the ladies of The View basically threw the same lame questions at McCain that have been circulating the Liberal Media and Blog Sites for the past few weeks. It was clear that they did little in the way of real research, and set themselves up to look foolish.  Later in the show, Cindy was brought out, and from there on …

Swamp Stomper Alert: Fairness Doctrine not just for talk radio

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From the Business and Media institute:

There’s a huge concern among conservative talk radio hosts that reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine would all-but destroy the industry due to equal time constraints. But speech limits might not stop at radio. They could even be extended to include the Internet and “government dictating content policy.”

FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell raised that as a possibility after talking with bloggers at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C. McDowell spoke about a recent FCC vote to bar Comcast from engaging in certain Internet practices – expanding the

Newspaper Web Sites and Anonymous Comments

Des Moines Register columnist Rekha Basu wrote an interesting piece for today’s paper on the foibles of unrestrained and anonymous commenting on newspaper web sites, such as that hosted by the Des Moines Register.

It was a very informative piece and I think can help give some people perspective into the issue of unmoderated and anonymous commenting, the impacts it can have on people when those who abuse the forum attack others, and the opinions of those that in particular are vitriolic in their content.  The piece touches briefly on some of the driving issues behind how a newspaper determines its approach to filtering content.  It was very effective in providing significant information, an excellent job of reporting from the various stakeholders.

The piece fails, …

Online Rules Of Discourse: Could We?

About four months ago (I know, I’m a little behind catching up with some general topics), DavidL at BitsBlog shared an item from Edward Wasserman at the Miami Herald.  Wasserman’s thought was that there is a need for rules to constrain course, offensive, and threatening language on the internet, or at least the news and blogosphere.

David’s response to Ed’s commentary was not unexpected, nor inappropriate.  I agree that those who wish to maintain open content and uncensored invectives is a right that should be available to those who wish to interact in that manner.  And David is correct, if you don’t like it, don’t read it.

That doesn’t change the fact that some of us see a need for rules that exist within a …

Lieberman and YouTube

Wow!  I totally missed the Lieberman confrontation with YouTube (owned by Google) until it was mentioned in an email exchange I had today.

From CNN:

In a Monday [May 19, 2008] letter to Eric Schmidt, chief executive officer of Google, Lieberman asked that YouTube “implement its own policy against this offensive material,” by removing the videos. Lieberman, the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, also wants YouTube staffers to have a system that will prevent the video from reappearing.

I am a bit amazed, as I did not think he would advocate this kind of censorship.  If I understand his position, I think he’s wrong.  I like Lieberman mostly because of his willingness to stand up to his party and

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