GERMANY 1939 ALL OVER AGAIN FASCISM IS ALIVE AND WELL

GERMANY 1939 ALL OVER AGAIN FASCISM IS

 ALIVE AND WELL 

SEND THIS TO EVERYONE

Bill would give president emergency control of Internet

Original article

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-10320096-38.html

 

Internet companies and civil liberties groups were alarmed this spring when a U.S. Senate bill proposed handing the White House the power to disconnect private-sector computers from the Internet.

They’re not much happier about a revised version that aides to Sen. Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, have spent months drafting behind closed doors. CNET News has obtained a copy of the 55-page draft of S.773 (excerpt), which still appears to permit the president to seize temporary control of private-sector networks during a so-called cybersecurity emergency.

The new version would allow the president to “declare a cybersecurity emergency” relating to “non-governmental” computer networks and do what’s necessary to respond to the threat. Other sections of the proposal include a federal certification program for “cybersecurity professionals,” and a requirement that certain computer systems and networks in the private sector be managed by people who have been awarded that license.

“I think the redraft, while improved, remains troubling due to its vagueness,” said Larry Clinton, president of the Internet Security Alliance, which counts representatives of Verizon, Verisign, Nortel, and Carnegie Mellon University on its board. “It is unclear what authority Sen. Rockefeller thinks is necessary over the private sector. Unless this is clarified, we cannot properly analyze, let alone support the bill.”

Representatives of other large Internet and telecommunications companies expressed concerns about the bill in a teleconference with Rockefeller’s aides this week, but were not immediately available for interviews on Thursday.

A spokesman for Rockefeller also declined to comment on the record Thursday, saying that many people were unavailable because of the summer recess. A Senate source familiar with the bill compared the president’s power to take control of portions of the Internet to what President Bush did when grounding all aircraft on Sept. 11, 2001. The source said that one primary concern was the electrical grid, and what would happen if it were attacked from a broadband connection.

When Rockefeller, the chairman of the Senate Commerce committee, and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) introduced the original bill in April, they claimed it was vital to protect national cybersecurity. “We must protect our critical infrastructure at all costs–from our water to our electricity, to banking, traffic lights and electronic health records,” Rockefeller said.

The Rockefeller proposal plays out against a broader concern in Washington, D.C., about the government’s role in cybersecurity. In May, President Obama acknowledged that the government is “not as prepared” as it should be to respond to disruptions and announced that a new cybersecurity coordinator position would be created inside the White House staff. Three months later, that post remains empty, one top cybersecurity aide has quit, and some wags have begun to wonder why a government that receives failing marks on cybersecurity should be trusted to instruct the private sector what to do.

Rockefeller’s revised legislation seeks to reshuffle the way the federal government addresses the topic. It requires a “cybersecurity workforce plan” from every federal agency, a “dashboard” pilot project, measurements of hiring effectiveness, and the implementation of a “comprehensive national cybersecurity strategy” in six months–even though its mandatory legal review will take a year to complete.

The privacy implications of sweeping changes implemented before the legal review is finished worry Lee Tien, a senior staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation in San Francisco. “As soon as you’re saying that the federal government is going to be exercising this kind of power over private networks, it’s going to be a really big issue,” he says.

Probably the most controversial language begins in Section 201, which permits the president to “direct the national response to the cyber threat” if necessary for “the national defense and security.” The White House is supposed to engage in “periodic mapping” of private networks deemed to be critical, and those companies “shall share” requested information with the federal government. (“Cyber” is defined as anything having to do with the Internet, telecommunications, computers, or computer networks.)

“The language has changed but it doesn’t contain any real additional limits,” EFF’s Tien says. “It simply switches the more direct and obvious language they had originally to the more ambiguous (version)…The designation of what is a critical infrastructure system or network as far as I can tell has no specific process. There’s no provision for any administrative process or review. That’s where the problems seem to start. And then you have the amorphous powers that go along with it.”

Translation: If your company is deemed “critical,” a new set of regulations kick in involving who you can hire, what information you must disclose, and when the government would exercise control over your computers or network.

The Internet Security Alliance’s Clinton adds that his group is “supportive of increased federal involvement to enhance cyber security, but we believe that the wrong approach, as embodied in this bill as introduced, will be counterproductive both from an national economic and national secuity perspective.”

 

4 Percent of Israelis Think Obama is Pro-Israel– I’m surprised it’s that high

4 Percent of Israelis Think Obama is Pro-Israel

Efforts to improve U.S.-Israeli ties have apparently not improved Obama’s reputation in Israel

FOXNews.com

Friday, August 28, 2009

 Only four percent of Jewish Israelis believe President Obama’s policies are pro-Israel while half oppose a temporary freeze of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, a poll released on Friday found.

The survey, conducted by the Jerusalem Post, found that more than half, 51 percent, considered Obama’s administration to be more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israeli, up slightly from 50 percent in June.

The percentage of Jewish Israelis who consider Obama to be pro-Israel was down from six percent in a much-cited June 19 poll. By comparison, 88 percent of those interviewed in the June survey thought former President George W. Bush was pro-Israel.

The new poll appears to show that U.S. efforts to improve American-Israeli ties have not improved Obama’s reputation among Israelis. 

However, the survey was taken prior to reports that the Obama administration is apparently backing down on its insistence that Israel halt all settlement activity as a condition for restarting peace talks with the Palestinians.

While U.S. officials insist their position on the matter has not changed, they are now hinting that a less blanket moratorium would be acceptable provided the Palestinians and Arab states agree.

The administration’s special Mideast envoy, George Mitchell, has been pressing Israel, the Palestinians and neighboring Arab nations to take specific confidence-building measures to lay the groundwork for a resumption in peace negotiations. The administration wants to have President Obama announce a breakthrough in the third week of September at or on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

Getting Arab buy-in on such a deal will be difficult, particularly since Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has refused to resume negotiations with Israel until there is a full freeze on settlements. U.S. officials said Thursday that they will continue to press Israel for as broad a suspension as possible.

The Smith Research poll for The Jerusalem Post was conducted August 24-25 among 500 Jewish Israelis and has a margin of error of 4.5 percent.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

The President and fellow Democrats seem to be switching their message on health care — pushing for reforming health insurance rather than overhauling the entire health care system.

The President and fellow Democrats seem to be switching their message on health care — pushing for reforming health insurance rather than overhauling the entire health care system.

The White House is proposing heavy new regulations on private health insurance market under the guise of so-called “consumer protections.” Many of the policies suggested by the Administration and Congress would result in sweeping, complex and highly discretionary new federal regulation of the health care system.

Consumers need protections not just from insurers but from the government as well. Americans should beware.

Here are few studies that shed some light on the real impact these proposals would have on the marketplace as well as a Heritage Foundation piece on better ways to help consumers:

Health Insurance Mandates in the States, 2009

The Effect of State Community Rating Regulations on Premiums and Coverage in the Individual Health Insurance

Individual Health Insurance 2006-2007: A Comprehensive Survey of Premiums, Availability, and Benefits

Health Care Reform: Design Principles for a Patient-Centered, Consumer-Based Market

>> For more information about health care, visit FixHealthCarePolicy.com.

Democratic congressmen letting the cat out of the Obamacare bag

Democratic congressmen letting the cat out of the

 Obamacare bag

Rick Moran
It appears that some Democratic congressmen care more about getting re-elected than lying for their Fearless Leader in the White House.

Obama has been running around the country telling everyone that his health care reform plan will not pay for abortions. He has also been reassuring seniors that they will not lose any benefits.

Both claims have been debunked by both opponents of reform and several mainstream media outlets. And now, two Congressmen have let the cat out of the bag and contradicted their leader by telling the truth about government-funded abortions and the elimination of the Medicare Advantage program.

First, John McCormack of the Weekly Standard blog has Bart Stupak’s (D-MI) confession about abortion:

“It would be a dramatic shift,” says Representative Bart Stupak, a Michigan Democrat who has vowed to oppose the bill because of how it would affect abortion. Stupak says dozens of House Democrats may join him in opposing a final health-care compromise unless the abortion language is changed, presenting a clear challenge to Democratic vote counters that could imperil a party-line vote. […] “We are going to do everything we can to stop the rule, or the bill, from coming to the floor,” [Democratic Congressman Bart] Stupak says, adding that as many as 39 Democratic members of Congress may join him in the effort. It remains unclear how the Senate will deal with the abortion issue. There is also no consensus within the Democratic Party about whether a public option should be included in final health-care-reform legislation.

 

In the meantime, Stupak says that Obama’s statements during recent public events signal one of two things: either he does not fully understand the current House bill, which Stupak maintains has the effect of publicly funding abortion, or “if he is aware of it, and he is making these statements, then he is misleading people.”

A Dem congressman accusing the president of lying? Perish the thought!

And then there’s Betsy Markey (D-CO) who puts the kibosh on Obama’s contention that seniors will see no benefit cuts under Obamacare. Mary Katherine Ham also writing at the WS Blog:

“There’s going to be some people who are going to have to give up some things, honestly, for all of this to work,” Markey said at a Congress on Your Corner event at CSU. “But we have to do this because we’re Americans.”

Nice try, Betsy. In fact, Obama has said he wants to eliminate “insurance subsidies” for Medicare which specifically targets all those supplemental plans. Getting rid of those will not bring down costs and will force seniors to pay more out of pocket for their health care.

In their eagerness to be truthful with their constituents, Democratic congressmen are making their president out to be a liar.

Hat Tip: Ed Lasky

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/08/democratic_congressmen_letting.html at August 28, 2009 – 11:13:54 AM EDT

Obama’s war on American sovereignty

Obama’s war on American sovereignty

Thomas Lifson
Andrew McCarthy explains on NRO what’s really going on with AG Holder’s investigation of the CIA over interrogation techniques. It’s what McCarthy delicately calls Obama’s “fondness for transnationalism,” or what I would call his war on American sovereignty.

In lucid terms, McCarthy examines the legal doctrines being pursued by Obama appointees, and explains what’s really going on. The article is a must-read, for all this information, but the conclusion is a stunner:
Transnationalists from outside and, now, inside our government have been ardent supporters of prosecutions against American officials who designed and carried out the Bush counterterrorism policies that kept this country safe after 9/11. The U.N.’s top torture monitor is demanding legal action, almost certainly as a prelude to calling for action by an international tribunal — such as the ICC — if the Justice Department fails to indict. Meantime, law-enforcement authorities in Spain and elsewhere are weighing charges against the same U.S. officials, spurred on by the CCR and human-rights groups that now have friends in high American places. In foreign and international courts, the terrorist-friendly legal standards preferred by Europe and the U.N. would make convictions easier to obtain and civil suits easier to win.

Page Printed from: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2009/08/obamas_war_on_american_soverei.html at August 28, 2009 – 11:11:24 AM EDT

Military chief seeks new plan to woo Muslims –Big Mistake–Allah Akbar Obama

Military chief seeks new plan to woo Muslims

Mullen says actions, not words, needed to erase ‘arrogant Americans’ label

  Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says American messages to counter information coming from extremists abroad “lack credibility.”

 

Brian Bohannon / AP  

WASHINGTON – The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has written a searing critique of government efforts at “strategic communication” with the Muslim world, saying that no amount of public relations will establish credibility if American behavior overseas is perceived as arrogant, uncaring or insulting.

The critique by the chairman, Adm. Mike Mullen, comes as the United States is widely believed to be losing ground in the war of ideas against extremist Islamist ideology. The issue is particularly relevant as the Obama administration orders fresh efforts to counter militant propaganda, part of its broader strategy to defeat the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

“To put it simply, we need to worry a lot less about how to communicate our actions and much more about what our actions communicate,” Admiral Mullen wrote in the critique, an essay to be published Friday by Joint Force Quarterly, an official military journal.

 “I would argue that most strategic communication problems are not communication problems at all,” he wrote. “They are policy and execution problems. Each time we fail to live up to our values or don’t follow up on a promise, we look more and more like the arrogant Americans the enemy claims we are.”

While President Obama has sought to differentiate himself from his predecessor, George W. Bush, in the eyes of the Muslim world — including through a widely praised speech in Egypt on June 4 — the perception of America as an arrogant oppressor has not changed noticeably, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan, where United States forces remain engaged in war, and in Pakistan, where American-launched missiles aimed at militants from the Taliban and Al Qaeda have killed civilians.

Last week, during a visit to Pakistan by Richard C. Holbrooke, Mr. Obama’s special envoy, Pakistanis told his entourage that America was widely despised in their country because, they said, it was obsessed with finding and killing Osama bin Laden to avenge the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

American messages ‘lack credibility’
Admiral Mullen expressed concern over a trend to create entirely new government and military organizations to manage a broad public relations effort to counter anti-Americanism, which he said had allowed strategic communication to become a series of bureaucracies rather than a way to combat extremist ideology.

He also challenged a popular perception that Al Qaeda operates from primitive hide-outs and still wins the propaganda war against the United States. “The problem isn’t that we are bad at communicating or being outdone by men in caves,” Admiral Mullen wrote. “Most of them aren’t even in caves. The Taliban and Al Qaeda live largely among the people. They intimidate and control and communicate from within, not from the sidelines.”

 

Amrrican messages to counter extremist information campaigns “lack credibility, because we haven’t invested enough in building trust and relationships, and we haven’t always delivered on promises,” he wrote.

As a guide, Admiral Mullen cited American efforts at rebuilding Europe after World War II and then containing communism as examples of successes that did not depend on opinion polls or strategic communication plans. He cited more recent military relief missions after natural disasters as continuing that style of successful American efforts overseas.

“That’s the essence of good communication: having the right intent up front and letting our actions speak for themselves,” Admiral Mullen wrote. “We shouldn’t care if people don’t like us. That isn’t the goal. The goal is credibility. And we earn that over time.”

Members of Congress also have expressed concern about the government’s programs for strategic communication, public diplomacy and public affairs. Both the Senate and House Armed Services Committees have raised questions about the Pentagon’s programs for strategic communication — and about how money is spent on them.

The Senate Armed Services Committee issued a budget report last month noting that while “strategic communications and public diplomacy programs are important activities,” it was unclear whether these efforts were integrated within the Pentagon or across other departments and agencies. “Nor is the committee able to oversee adequately the funding for the multitude of programs,” the Senate report stated.

‘Certain arrogance’
Admiral Mullen did not single out specific government communications programs for criticism, but wrote that “there has been a certain arrogance to our ‘strat comm’ efforts.” He wrote that “good communications runs both ways.”

“It’s not about telling our story,” he stated. “We must also be better listeners.”

 

The Muslim community “is a subtle world we don’t fully — and don’t always attempt to — understand,” he wrote. “Only through a shared appreciation of the people’s culture, needs and hopes for the future can we hope ourselves to supplant the extremist narrative.”

He acknowledged that the term strategic communication was “probably here to stay,” but argued that it should be limited to describing “the process by which we integrate and coordinate” government communications programs.

Coinciding with the publication of his essay, Admiral Mullen released a YouTube video inviting questions from members of the armed services and the public on a range of national security and military personnel issues for an online discussion.

“The chairman intends to use social media to expand the two-way conversation with service members and the public,” said a statement announcing the interactive video question-and-answer session.

This story, “Message to Muslim World Gets a Pentagon Critique,” originally appeared in The New York Times.

Some Surprised By ‘Clunker’ Tax

Some Surprised By ‘Clunker’ Tax

The Cash For Clunkers program is adding to the activity at treasurers’ offices all around South Dakota. First, people were asking for proof of ownership, so they could show they owned their vehicle for a full year, allowing them to cash it in. Now, they’ll be returning to register their new vehicle.  And when they do, new owners need to bring every bit of paperwork provided to them by their dealer.

“That means they need their title, their damage disclosure, their bill of sale and the dealers have 30 days to get that to them,” Minnehaha County Treasurer Pam Nelson said.

But many of those cashing in on the clunkers program are surprised when they get to the treasurer’s office windows. That’s because the government’s rebate of up to $4500 dollars for every clunker is taxable.

“They didn’t realize that would be taxable. A lot of people don’t realize that. So they’re not happy and kind of surprised when they find that out,” Nelson said.

For now, the biggest impact of the program hasn’t hit this office yet, as most of the paperwork is still in the hands of the dealers. But Nelson expects to see move activity in her office in the next month.

“I’m anxious to see what it’s going to be like. I have no idea how many people we’re going to see. Hopefully the dealers can process their paperwork in 30 days,” Nelson said. 

And that’s when the line at this office will give some indication of how many cars the government program moved off of local lots. 

Nelson adds that if you did recently purchase a vehicle, ensure your dealer gets you the paperwork in time because if they don’t you could pay extra interest and penalties.