Variation on the Meaning of Life

Gibbs Gurns

You Wretched, Irrelevant, Drug-Addled Ingrates,You

A remarkable tantrum from White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, in which he blasts “the Professional Left” for criticizing Obama policies – a.k.a. being a bunch of stoned, unrealistic, un-American losers who want to reform health care, eliminate the Pentagon and elect President Kucinich, not to mention save jobs, curb Wall Street, end two pointless wars, honor habeas corpus and do other “crazy” things. Glenn Greenwald, fuming, responds.

“Perhaps one day the White House can work itself up to express this sort of sputtering rage against the Right, or the Wall Street thieves who destroyed the American economy, or the permanent factions that control Washington.” – Greenwald.

Keith Kicks

KEITH OLBERMANN’S SPECIAL COMMENT: The ‘Professional Right’ Goes Unchallenged by ‘Amateur Left’ in the White House Wednesday, August 11, 2010 by Countdown w/ Keith Olbermann. In a Special Comment, Countdown’s Keith Olbermann explains to White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs that while his frustration is understandable, it is more appropriately directed at the “professional right” and at the Obama administration itself for throwing out so many principles in an effort to compromise with an unwilling partner. VIDEO: http://www.commondreams.org/video/2010/08/11-0


See unemployment bloom across the country in this animated, county by county map. Scary. Updated Thursday, July 15, 2010 at 9:15 pm. Click here for YouTube version.

END OF THE INTERNET? Google-Verizon Pact: It Gets Worse by Craig Aaron Tuesday, August 10, 2010 CommonDreams.org

So Google and Verizon went public Monday with their “policy framework” — better known as the pact to end the Internet as we know it.

News of this deal broke this week, sparking a public outcry that’s seen hundreds of thousands of Internet users calling on Google to live up to its “Don’t Be Evil” pledge.

This deal is even worse than advertised.

The proposal is one massive loophole setting the stage for corporate takeover of the Internet.

Real Net Neutrality means that Internet service providers can’t discriminate between different kinds of online content and applications. It guarantees a level playing field for all Web sites and Internet technologies. It’s what makes sure the next Google, out there in a garage somewhere, has just as good a chance as any giant corporate behemoth to find its audience and thrive online.

What Google and Verizon propose is fake Net Neutrality. Read their framework here or go here to see Google twist itself in knots on this “thorny issue,” but here are the basics:

1.  Permits no Net Neutrality on wireless networks — anything goes, from blocking websites and applications to pay-for-priority treatment.

2.  Creates such a weak “non-discrimination” standard for wired networks that blocking of sites would be allowed.

3.  Allows ISPs like Verizon — instead of Internet users like you – to decide which applications deserve the best quality of service. The Internet has never worked that way, and the corporations threaten to close the door on tomorrow’s innovative applications.

4.  Allows ISPs to split the Internet into “two pipes” — one for “managed services,” a pay-for-play platform for content and applications (the proverbial toll road on the information superhighway).  The select are in the fast lane, the rest are on a dirt road.

5. Turns the Federal Communications Commission into a toothless watchdog, left fruitlessly chasing consumer complaints but unable to make rules of its own. Leaves up to unaccountable (and almost surely industry-controlled) third parties to decide what the rules should be.

If there’s a silver lining, it isn’t up to Google and Verizon to write the rules. That’s why we have Congress and the FCC. Certainly by now we should have learned – from AIG, Massey Energy, BP – what happens when big companies regulate themselves and don’t do the right thing. We need the FCC — with the backing of Congress and President Obama — to step up to the hard work of governing. That means restoring the FCC’s authority to protect Internet users and safeguarding real Net Neutrality once and for all.

Such a move will not be popular on Wall Street, but it’s the kind of leadership the American people need right now.

TELL THE FCC WHY WE NEED Net Neutrality, please do it now.

Craig Aaron is the managing director of Free Press, the national, nonpartisan, nonprofit media reform group, where he leads all program, public advocacy and communications work, including the SavetheInternet.com and SaveTheNews.org campaigns.  READ MORE: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/08/10-2


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