WikiLeaks subpoenas spill out into public realm

Jan 08, 2011 By RAPHAEL G. SATTER and PETE YOST , Associated Press
This undated file photo obtained by The Associated Press shows Bradley Manning, the U.S. Army private suspected of being the source of some of the unauthorized classified information disclosed on the WikiLeaks website. In a statement Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011, WikiLeaks said U.S. investigators had gone to the San Francisco-based Twitter Inc. to demand the private messages, contact information and other personal details of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, Manning and other supporters. (AP Photo, File)

(AP) -- Investigative documents in the WikiLeaks probe spilled out into the public domain Saturday for the first time, pointing to the Obama administration's determination to assemble a criminal case no matter how long it takes and how far afield authorities have to go.

Backed by a magistrate judge's court order from Dec. 14, the newly disclosed documents sent to Twitter Inc. by the U.S. attorney's office in Alexandria, Va., demand details about the accounts of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and Pfc. Bradley Manning, the Army intelligence analyst who's in custody and suspected of supplying WikiLeaks with classified information.

The others whose Twitter accounts are targeted in the prosecutors' demand are Birgitta Jonsdottir, an Icelandic parliamentarian and one-time WikiLeaks collaborator; Dutch hacker Rop Gonggrijp; and U.S. programmer Jacob Appelbaum. Gonggrijp and Appelbaum have worked with WikiLeaks in the past.

Justice Department spokesman Matt Miller declined comment on the disclosure in the case, which intensified following WikiLeaks' latest round of revelations with the posting of classified State Department diplomatic cables. The next day, Nov. 29, Attorney General Eric Holder vowed that anyone found to have violated U.S. law in the leaks would be prosecuted.

Assange said the U.S. move amounted to harassment, and he pledged to fight it.

"If the Iranian government was to attempt to coercively obtain this information from journalists and activists of foreign nations, human rights groups around the world would speak out," he told The Associated Press in an e-mail.

Legal experts have said one possible avenue for federal prosecutors would be to establish a conspiracy to steal classified information.

"They are trying to show that Manning was more than a source of the information to a reporter and rather that Assange and Manning were trying to jointly steal information from the U.S. government," said Mark Rasch, a former prosecutor on computer crime and espionage cases in the Justice Department.

The problem is distinguishing between WikiLeaks as a news organization and those who re-published the same classified information, like The New York Times, said Rasch, director of cybersecurity and privacy consulting at CSC, a Falls Church, Va., technology company.

"How do they prosecute?" asked Rasch. "The answer is by establishing a unity of interest between Manning and Assange. Make it a theft case and not just a journalist publishing information case."

The demand by prosecutors sought information dating to Nov. 1, 2009, several months before an earlier WikiLeaks release.

Manning is in a maximum-security military brig at Quantico, Va., charged with leaking video of a 2007 U.S. Apache helicopter attack in Baghdad that killed a Reuters news photographer and his driver. WikiLeaks posted the video on its website in April of last year. Three months later, WikiLeaks posted some 90,000 leaked U.S. military records on the war in Afghanistan, including unreported incidents of Afghan civilian killings as well as covert operations against Taliban figures.

The main target of the prosecutors' document demands is most likely the IP addresses of the Twitter users, said Stanford University law professor Larry Lessig, founder of the Center for Internet & Society, Stanford.

Getting a list of IP addresses - specific numerical address that can identify individual computers as they interact over the Internet - could help prosecutors an effort to draw specific connections between individuals, their computers, and the information they share.

"It's not very hard for an investigator to put these things together and come back and identify a specific individual," Lessig said.

In a statement about the demand to Twitter for information, WikiLeaks said it has reason to believe Facebook and Google, among other organizations, have received similar court orders. WikiLeaks called on them to unseal any subpoenas they have received.

The document demand ordered Twitter to hand over private messages, billing information, telephone numbers, connection records and other information about accounts run by Assange and the others.

A copy of the demand, sent to the AP by Jonsdottir, said the information sought was "relevant to an ongoing criminal investigation" and ordered Twitter not to disclose its existence to any of the targets.

But a second document, dated Jan. 5, unsealed the court order. Although the reason wasn't made explicit in the document, WikiLeaks said it had been unsealed "thanks to legal action by Twitter."

Twitter declined comment on the matter, saying only that its policy is to notify its users, where possible, of government requests for information.

Neither Facebook Inc. nor Google Inc. immediately returned messages Saturday.

The Obama administration volunteered little new information about its criminal investigation against Assange and WikiLeaks after news of its subpoena leaked. Under rules governing grand jury investigations - in which U.S. prosecutors present evidence and testimony to selected private citizens behind closed doors to seek their approval to formally file charges - government lawyers are not allowed to discuss the case until charges are announced publicly.

It was not immediately clear how the data being requested would be useful to investigators. Twitter's logs could reveal the Internet addresses that Assange and WikiLeaks supporters have used, which could help track their locations as they traveled around the world. The information also might identify others with official access to WikiLeaks' account on Twitter who so far have escaped scrutiny.

Assange's lawyer, Mark Stephens, said targeting Twitter showed how desperate U.S. officials were to pin a crime on the WikiLeaks founder.

Stephens told the BBC it was an attempt to "shake the electronic tree in the hope some kind of criminal charge drops out the bottom of it."

Jonsdottir said in a Twitter message that she had "no intention to hand my information over willingly." Appelbaum, whose Twitter feed suggested he was traveling in Iceland, said he was apprehensive about returning to the U.S.

"Time to try to enjoy the last of my vacation, I suppose," he tweeted.

Gonggrijp praised Twitter for notifying him.

"It appears that Twitter, as a matter of policy, does the right thing in wanting to inform their users when one of these comes in," Gonggrijp said. "Heaven knows how many places have received similar subpoenas and just quietly submitted all they had on me."

The news of the subpoena follows months of angry back and forth between U.S. officials and WikiLeaks, which has released reams of secret U.S. military documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and more recently, thousands of classified U.S. diplomatic cables.

U.S. officials say posting the military documents put informers' lives at risk, and that revealing diplomatic cables has made other countries reluctant to deal with American officials.

WikiLeaks denies that its postings put any lives at risk and says Washington merely is acting out of embarrassment over the revelations contained in the cables.

WikiLeaks and its tech-savvy staff have relied on American Internet and finance companies to raise funds, disseminate material and get their message out.

WikiLeaks' frequently updated Facebook page, for example, counts 1.5 million fans and its Twitter account has a following of more than 600,000. Until recently, the group raised donations via U.S. companies PayPal Inc., MasterCard Inc., and Visa Inc., and hosted material on Amazon.com's servers.

But the group's use of American companies has come under increasing pressure as it continues to reveal U.S. secrets. PayPal and the credit card companies severed their links with site and Amazon.com booted WikiLeaks from its servers last month.

The actions sparked a cyberfight with WikiLeaks sympathizers, who attacked the company's sites for days.

Assange is currently out on bail in Britain, where he is fighting extradition to Sweden on sex crimes allegations. His next hearing is scheduled for Tuesday.

Explore further: Vatican's manuscripts digital archive now available online

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User comments : 330

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dogbert
1.6 / 5 (20) Jan 08, 2011
It is a study of hypocrisy to see how profligate Julian Assange is with others' information and how bitterly he decries the release of his personal information.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.3 / 5 (17) Jan 08, 2011
It is a study of hypocrisy to see how profligate Julian Assange is with others' information and how bitterly he decries the release of his personal information.

When he does it the the government, it is journalism. When the government does it to him, it is illegal search and seizure.
dogbert
1.8 / 5 (25) Jan 08, 2011
When he does it the the government, it is journalism. When the government does it to him, it is illegal search and seizure.


When he does it to the government, it is espionage. When the government does it to him, it is due process.

There, I fixed it.

(His behavior remains hypocrisy, regardless of your viewpoint on the activities of the participants).
mondoblu
4.5 / 5 (22) Jan 08, 2011
U.S. government is hypocrite, in fact they call themself 'democratic' but U.S. government is responsible for the Guantanamo prison, an illegal concentration camp that it's a crime against humanity!

U.S. government is hypocrite because it is responsible for the killing of several thousands innocent people in Afghanistan and Iraq by U.S. Army in the name of "peace"!
dogbert
1.2 / 5 (23) Jan 08, 2011
I notice you only target the U.S. government. Strangely, Julian Assange also seems to direct his espionage against the U.S. government preferentially.

Incidentally, a human being can be a hypocrite. A government is not an entity and cannot be a hypocrite.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (20) Jan 08, 2011
Dogbert: ...seems to direct his espionage against the U.S. government preferentially"

What espionage?

Espionage means spying. What spying was done?
Skeptic_Heretic
4.8 / 5 (22) Jan 08, 2011
When he does it the the government, it is journalism. When the government does it to him, it is illegal search and seizure.


When he does it to the government, it is espionage.
And what did he "do" to the government?
When the government does it to him, it is due process.
For what crime, and more importantly, what part of due process involves exposing someone's life to the general public?

(His behavior remains hypocrisy, regardless of your viewpoint on the activities of the participants).
His behavior is in response to a retaliation by an entire corporate and political machine against a single individual because he holds them accountable for their actions. The government is not your friend it is your tool. You can use it to impose liberty and freedom, or you can use it to create a police state. Make your choice.
dogbert
1.2 / 5 (20) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

You should look up the word "espionage". What Julian Assange did precisely fits the meaning of the word.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (20) Jan 08, 2011
Dogbert:

es·pi·o·nage (sp--näzh, -nj)
n.
The act or practice of spying or of using spies to obtain secret information, as about another government or a business competitor.

There you go, definition supplied.

So, without getting knickers in a knot, what espionage did Julian Assange actually do?
dogbert
1.2 / 5 (23) Jan 08, 2011
So, without getting knickers in a knot, what espionage did Julian Assange actually do?


The act or practice of spying or of using spies to obtain secret information, as about another government or a business competitor.

AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (21) Jan 08, 2011
So .....

Where's the espionage?

Julian Assange didn't spy on anybody?

He's a web-publishers from a Queensland, Australia.

You know, of wikileaks fame.

Are you sure you are not mixing him up with someone else?
Quantum_Conundrum
1 / 5 (19) Jan 08, 2011
You can use it to impose liberty and freedom, or you can use it to create a police state. Make your choice.


"Liberty" and "freedom" are impossible without police enforcement.

If there weren't so many government law enforcement agencies, you would never be safe at anything. The murderers, thieves, rapists, and terrorists would do whatever the heck they cared to do, and you wouldn't have any defense.

Some guy just might decide to come kill you and rape your wife. Or make you watch first, then kill you. Which they damn near do now anyway even with the police and other law enforcement.

The guy who leaked this info to Assange meets the defintion of a traitor and of treason.
dogbert
1.2 / 5 (18) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

Read the definition again. No one claims that Julian Assange was involved in personally spying. He used information obtained by others. The definition of espionage includes the act of "using spies to obtain secret information".

Read the definition again and try to understand it.
dogbert
1 / 5 (15) Jan 08, 2011
Quantum Conundrum,

The guy who leaked this info to Assange meets the defintion of a traitor and of treason.


Indeed.
nada
4.8 / 5 (11) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

Read the definition again. No one claims that Julian Assange was involved in personally spying. He used information obtained by others. The definition of espionage includes the act of "using spies to obtain secret information".

Read the definition again and try to understand it.


Sorry, the definition is wrong - but we won't let that get in the way of giving up the democracy to police-state CPC wannabees.

If you want to know who the true criminals are, simply look at the individuals who are upset the most by wikileaks JOURNALISM.

The ones screaming about this are the ones that have corrupt political histories and liking have skeletons that could land them in prison. Hillary Clinton, Joe Libermann - does anyone doubt their ability to do evil?

The screaming rats.

Anyone who thinks for a second that any person who brings criminal behavior to light should be prosecuted under some police state law is NOT an American.
dogbert
1 / 5 (13) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

Sorry, the definition is wrong - but we won't let that get in the way of giving up the democracy to police-state CPC wannabees.


It is not wrong -- and you supplied the definition that you now find wanting.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (17) Jan 08, 2011
Dogbert:

The whole definition applies - you can't just omit parts you don't like.

Either way, when did he use spies?

He's actually on record as stating he did not request or ask for or in anyway solicit the information. In fact, the information came unbidden.

So, like I already asked - where's the espionage performed by Julian Assange?
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (7) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

Sorry, the definition is wrong - but we won't let that get in the way of giving up the democracy to police-state CPC wannabees.


It is not wrong -- and you supplied the definition that you now find wanting.


I never said the definition was wrong - you need to slow down a little.

Wasn't me.

I'm happy with the definition.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.7 / 5 (13) Jan 08, 2011
So QC and dogbert are too young to know who Daniel Elllsburg is.
nada
4.8 / 5 (16) Jan 08, 2011
dogbert:

Your definition is WRONG because it is generic and mixes FEDERAL espioage law with CORPORATE espioage law. The laws are also country specific.

Here's a different definition (pertaining to the U.S federal espioage):

"Espionage is the crime of spying on the federal government and/or transferring state secrets on behalf of a foreign country. If the other country is an enemy, espionage may be treason, which involves aiding an enemy. The term applies particularly to the act of collecting military, industrial, and political data about one nation for the benefit of another."

So again Assange broke NO LAW.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (12) Jan 08, 2011
By either definition (online dictionary or the one from nada), Julian Assange has not committed espionage in any form, at all.

Dogbert: your accusation of espionage is fallacious.
dogbert
1 / 5 (13) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,

I never said the definition was wrong - you need to slow down a little.


Sorry, I misread. It was Nada who had problems with the definition of espionage.

But now you claim that Julian Assange's espionage is not espionage. It is. It fits the definition of espionage. He also fits the profile of an individual engaged in espionage.
dogbert
1.3 / 5 (16) Jan 08, 2011
nada,

So again Assange broke NO LAW.


When did I claim he broke a law? He is not an American citizen and is not subject to U.S. law. He is guilty of espionage, but unless he freely enters the U.S. or he is extradited to the U.S., he will never be punished for his espionage.

My comments started with noting his hypocrisy in that he decries exposure of his secrets but sees no problem with divulging others' secrets.

He is a hypocrite and he is engaging in espionage.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (11) Jan 08, 2011
Dogbert:

Be honest, you've simply used the wrong word and instead of just saying "I’ve used the wrong word, I actually meant ..." and correct yourself, you doggedly sticking to something that we all see is wrong.

Assange didn't spy on anyone, nor did he cause anyone to spy for him - I know this, you know this, the US Government knows this.

Receiving unsolicited information, and publishing it, is not espionage.

By no definition is there any espionage occurring.

Finally, it’s true that your comments were originally about what you call Assange's hypocrisy - but I challenged you on the point of espionage - because you’re simply wrong about it.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (3) Jan 08, 2011
Dogbert:

Be honest, you've simply used the wrong word and instead of just saying "I’ve used the wrong word, I actually meant ..." and correct yourself, you doggedly sticking to something that we all see is wrong.

Assange didn't spy on anyone, nor did he cause anyone to spy.

Receiving unsolicited information, and publishing it, is not espionage.

By no definition is there any espionage occurring.

Finally, it’s true that your comments were originally about what you call Assange's hypocrisy - but I only challenged you on the point you made about espionage - because you’re simply wrong about that. That’s simply not correct.
finitesolutions
4.9 / 5 (7) Jan 08, 2011
Doing business with americans is a big mistake. They will always betray you no matter what. Stay away from dollars, McDonalds, Coke, Ford and other american crap.
AngrySparrow
4.9 / 5 (10) Jan 08, 2011
Doing business with americans is a big mistake. They will always betray you no matter what. Stay away from dollars, McDonalds, Coke, Ford and other american crap.


It's ironic really, being able to simply get secure data about people and their activities is the very thing the US Government is squealing and whining about.

If they actually succeed in extracting this info from twitter, I doubt anyone will trust US based social networks going forward

It is very worrying for potential new industries like "cloud computing" – especially since international businesses and countries are already having trust issues with American companies potentially giving advantageous trade information away to the US Government.

As it is, many countries and businesses are quietly disengaging from the USA - because they're simply too hard to deal with.
dogbert
1.4 / 5 (18) Jan 08, 2011
Angry Sparrow,
I only challenged you on the point you made about espionage - because you�re simply wrong about that. That�s simply not correct.


I made no mistake. Assange fits the definition of espionage which you supplied:
The act or practice of spying or of using spies to obtain secret information, as about another government or a business competitor.


You state that "Assange didn't spy on anyone, nor did he cause anyone to spy." No one disputes that. No one has claimed that he caused anyone else to spy.
The definition of espionage which you supplied calls espionage the act of "using spies to obtain secret information". No one accuses Assagne of personally spying, no one accuses him of hiring a spy or spies, what he has done, however, is use a spy or spies to obtain secret information.
jamesrm
4.7 / 5 (12) Jan 08, 2011
Wikipedia
"Espionage or spying involves an individual obtaining information that is considered secret or confidential without the permission of the holder of the information. Espionage is inherently clandestine, lest the legitimate holder of the information change plans or take other countermeasures once it is known that the information is in unauthorized hands."

"inherently clandestine" is important, as he is publishing it, its not espionage.

"as about >another government< or a >business competitor<

neither of these are applicable in this acount either.

What is your reading comprehension level 3rd grade?

rgds
jms
dogbert
1.3 / 5 (15) Jan 08, 2011
jamesrn,

Pulling in a wikipedia opening statement doesn't change the definition of espionage.

You want to dissemble by inserting the word clandestine as if it changes anything:


clandestine

characterized by, done in, or executed with secrecy or concealment, esp. for purposes of subversion or deception; private or surreptitious


Obviously, the espionage Assagne committed was committed clandistinely.
maxcypher
5 / 5 (3) Jan 09, 2011
If one isn't open to an alternate point of view, then no discussion is possible.
Doug_Huffman
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 09, 2011
To those that will follow Assange, I recommend TOR Net.

To the arrogantly ignorant (or is it ignorantly arrogant) governments, I recommend PGP.
bluehigh
1 / 5 (1) Jan 09, 2011
When every communication becomes public there is no privacy and its likely that this form of openness will negatively impact on many forms of relationship. I'm not sure thats all good.
insignificant_fish
4.6 / 5 (12) Jan 09, 2011
I enjoy arguing semantics as much as the next guy...

but how about the unsung innocent dead in the middle east that would be alive if not for our actions? How else would we ever know the truth? When it is declassified in 30 years?

This government has done damage to it's own people and the world that it cant reconcile by a police action. In fact, they look more guilty for doing so!

It took one criminal to out a government of criminals, and so what if he did? Does anyone think this is the whole story? Does anyone think this totals all the naughty things the US has done to date? for god sake this is just what a few people managed to leak out! Where is the investigation into the US? Where is the global judge and jury to try the nation?

the truth is in your faces and you are arguing about how it got there. what a waste of time.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (11) Jan 09, 2011
the truth is in your faces and you are arguing about how it got there. what a waste of time.
Quoted for ultimate truth.
Rhythmic
4.6 / 5 (9) Jan 09, 2011
the truth is in your faces and you are arguing about how it got there. what a waste of time.

It was high time word got out.

Not that it wasn't clear long ago, but now we've got some evidence.
Grallen
5 / 5 (9) Jan 09, 2011

"Liberty" and "freedom" are impossible without police enforcement.

If there weren't so many government law enforcement agencies, you would never be safe at anything. The murderers, thieves, rapists, and terrorists would do whatever the heck they cared to do, and you wouldn't have any defense.

Some guy just might decide to come kill you and rape your wife. Or make you watch first, then kill you. Which they damn near do now anyway even with the police and other law enforcement.

The guy who leaked this info to Assange meets the defintion of a traitor and of treason.


I'm not sure if people realize that it's not all black and white. Liberty and Freedom = Anarchy, Police State = Order. In their extremes, both are horrible options.

The American Dream is about two parts anarchy one part order.

People need to stop trying to support one side or the other and start trying to decide where the middle should be.

Oh. And stop fear mongering.
knikiy
4.7 / 5 (12) Jan 09, 2011
The US gov is going to spend a lot of $$ to try & drum up a case against whoever they say spilled the beans. Meanwhile Dick Cheney outs a CIA agent, we go to war over imaginary WMD and it gets swept under the rug. Something doesn't add up. Is this a government by and for the people? This is more like a hijacking of the Constitution.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2 / 5 (50) Jan 09, 2011
The US gov is going to spend a lot of $$ to try & drum up a case against whoever they say spilled the beans. Meanwhile Dick Cheney outs a CIA agent, we go to war over imaginary WMD
For the record the WMDs we ended up neutralizing werent NBC- they were the Iraqi armed forces, a very potent WMD with a heinous track record.
and it gets swept under the rug.
You seem to know enough about it to draw conclusions.
Something doesn't add up. Is this a government by and for the people? This is more like a hijacking of the Constitution.
What makes you think you need to know everything the govt does or needs to do? Do you believe in enemies? If the govt tells you everything you may want to know, then our enemies will also know and they will use the info to destroy us, including you and the people you care about. Do you want that? Perhaps you dont care about anybody but yourself and what YOU want. Perhaps YOU are an enemy of a free and independent society.
DKoncewicz
3.2 / 5 (9) Jan 09, 2011
Can we at least agree that not telling everyone about troop deployments might save soldiers' lives, but not telling anyone about killing civilians is heinous and should be criminally punishable?

I don't agree with all the leaks they did, they should have looked over them and made a judgment call, but, the government does need a lot more whistleblowing than it currently has. The government is after all there to serve the people, not to operate on its own and be unaccountable for its actions.
dieseltaylor
4.6 / 5 (11) Jan 09, 2011
I find it strange that the US government, which eavesdrops on millions of private messages each day - inside and outside of the US, is in some way free to do this without hindrance.

Despite that it still manages to invade Iraq unjustly, and variously prolong the war between Iran-Iraq, and other non-US insurrections. So at the end of day - who kills more.

Incidentally most writers seem not to know Wikileaks has stuff for many countries and is not just interested in the US - hard though some seem to find it.

# Big Pharma caught spying on the WHO
# Toll Collect Vertraege, 2002
# Egads! Confidential 9/11 Pager Messages Disclosed
# Ratiopharm: Geld und Geschenke für Ärzte
# Guardian still under secret toxic waste gag
# Ivory Coast toxic dumping report behind secret Guardian gag
# Verfassungsschutz soll zur Polizei werden
# Gmail may hand over IP addresses of journalists
# Turks and Caicos former PM to fight British rule
# Transparency after the Turks and Caicos Islands scandal
etc
dieseltaylor
4 / 5 (9) Jan 09, 2011
try looking at the Wikileaks site. You may see it is revealing the dirt on a lot of companies and countries and has been for some time. It seems peculiar that the US is painting it as anti-American. Could it just be that the people deserve to know what is being done behind closed doors in their name.

After all it is the US gvernment which has the largest spying effort in the world with the majority of the worlds electronic messages being monitored by the US. And this includes private and commercial messages.

"The European Parliament is suggesting that individuals and business routinely encrypt all emails to help protect them from eavesdropping by Echelon, the communications spy network. In its draft report into Echelon, the European Parliament says that member states should "above all to support projects aimed at developing user-friendly open-source encryption software."
dieseltaylor
3 / 5 (2) Jan 09, 2011
Try looking at the Wikileaks site. You may see it is revealing the dirt on a lot of companies and countries and has been for some time. It seems peculiar that the US is painting it as anti-American. Could it just be that the people deserve to know what is being done behind closed doors in their name.

After all it is the US gvernment which has the largest spying effort in the world with the majority of the worlds electronic messages being monitored by the US. And this includes private and commercial messages.

:The European Parliament is suggesting that individuals and business routinely encrypt all emails to help protect them from eavesdropping by Echelon, ...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (50) Jan 09, 2011
I don't agree with all the leaks they did, they should have looked over them and made a judgment call
'They' are obviously not qualified to do that. And they are certainly not to be trusted to have knowledge of some of that info.
dieseltaylor
not rated yet Jan 10, 2011
Apologies for the multiple posts. It was not clear over several attempts whether they were being accepted.
dtxx
4 / 5 (7) Jan 10, 2011
Doing business with americans is a big mistake. They will always betray you no matter what. Stay away from dollars, McDonalds, Coke, Ford and other american crap.


That's a very bigoted statement, don't you think? But I guess all 300+ million of us are tyrranical oppressors, junk food tycoons, or just can't wait to always stab you in the back no matter what.

What country do you hail from, enlightened sir?

frajo
3 / 5 (2) Jan 10, 2011
Can we at least agree that not telling everyone about troop deployments might save soldiers' lives
Saving a soldier's life abroad might equate to killing several civilians.
Arkaleus
3 / 5 (12) Jan 10, 2011
Pvt Manning sacrificed his life to reveal truth. It was an act of bravery and fortitude worthy of remembrance.

We should always remember his face and his acts, so after the years of life are taken by the evils in power, he can be freed and pardoned by a more rational and peaceful generation.

He loves his country more than the ones willing to kill without thinking, and much more than the senseless and illiterate "consumers" who cheer an imperial America and limitless State power.

Pvt. Manning represents the values of self-sacrifice when confronted with a monster that has already murdered so many and destroyed so much. Who else has lifted a finger to slow down the rampaging beast as it casts fire and chaos throughout the world?

Very damn few men will move a muscle to accomplish anything good, especially when it costs them anything. Even worse are those captivated by the illusions of power, having lost the ability to distinguish good from evil.
LuckyBrandon
5 / 5 (3) Jan 10, 2011
@QC-""Liberty" and "freedom" are impossible without police enforcement"

thats not true, the definition of law contradicts the definition of freedom. they are exact opposites.
LAW:
1a (1) : a binding custom or practice of a community : a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding or enforced by a controlling authority (2) : the whole body of such customs, practices, or rules (3) : common law b (1) : the control brought about by the existence or enforcement of such law (2) : the action of laws considered as a means of redressing wrongs; also : litigation (3) : the agency of or an agent of established law c : a rule or order that it is advisable or obligatory to observe d : something compatible with or enforceable by established law

FREEDOM:
1: the quality or state of being free: as a : the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action b : liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another : independence c : the quali
Arkaleus
3 / 5 (11) Jan 10, 2011
Don't waste your time on refuting QC's statist authoritarianism, he's locked in a loop with no break statement, forever helping to overthrow the free west and rational liberty. Que Mal.

What's fundamental to the understanding of the wikileaks phenomenon is acknowledging the will and acts of the state are not good. While the state may claim its acts are lawful, what it considers lawful is not good.

This crucial bit of reasoning is what needs to occur in the minds of the people if the people desire good. If they desire evil, then they cease to reason and submit to the will of the state.

It's mostly malformed psychology; many citizens of the USA are unable to mentally acknowledge that the state has done evil, and that its continuation of evil is wrong, therefore they deny the identity of evil and choose an irrational response that reinforces their denial.

The objective mind identifies a thing and does not fear the deceivers who insist reality is conjecture.
dogbert
2.1 / 5 (11) Jan 10, 2011

Arkaleus,
Pvt Manning sacrificed his life to reveal truth. It was an act of bravery and fortitude worthy of remembrance.


No, he is a traitor, plain and simple.

Calling him courageous does not negate his acts of treason.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (51) Jan 10, 2011
Pvt Manning sacrificed his life to reveal truth. It was an act of bravery and fortitude worthy of remembrance.
Brave... Indications are that this was just one more disgruntled, self-loathing individual who decided to commit figurative suicide by trashing his own life and a great many others.

Manning "felt isolated and ignored at work...no-one took any notice of me...i joined the army ... and that's proven to be a disaster now" and began his work in the context of some spat with an ex-boyfriend.
Very damn few men will move a muscle to accomplish anything good, especially when it costs them anything. Even worse are those captivated by the illusions of power, having lost the ability to distinguish good from evil.
Nice blahblah rhetoric. It obviously does not apply to manning or to what he did, which was selfish and criminal and had little to do with making things any better for anyone. At least he didnt shoot anybody in the face.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (46) Jan 10, 2011
Doing business with americans is a big mistake. They will always betray you no matter what. Stay away from dollars, McDonalds, Coke, Ford and other american crap.
Let us not forget perfidious Albion.
Tesla444
5 / 5 (1) Jan 11, 2011
LuckyBrandon: @QC "Liberty" and "freedom" are impossible without police enforcement"
"Thats not true, the definition of law contradicts the definition of freedom. they are exact opposites."

True they are seemingly opposites, but I think every 'Free' society makes an effort to balance the two. If we want a peaceful society that allows us to pursue our lives in relative calm, we accept some limits to our Freedom and hope our gov't manages the compromise in our best interests. Many US citizens have a innate fear that their Gov't does NOT act on their behalf, hence the reliance on the 2nd Amendment which they think will protect them from the Gov't that is 'out to get them'. Apparently they have forgotten that their Gov't is 'by the people, for the people', actually a shining example to the World. If you don't like them, Vote them out, Don't shoot them. It seems the phrase 'The British are Coming' still inspires nightmares in the minds of 2nd Amendment fanatics.
Tesla444
3 / 5 (2) Jan 12, 2011
PS: The British aren't coming! That was over 200 years ago! They don't run the country anymore, but maybe if they did there wouldn't be so many guns in the US now.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (5) Jan 12, 2011
dogbert


... is use a spy or spies to obtain secret information.


Now you’re splitting hairs.

Before 911, daily the NSA intercepted and interrogated literally billions of telephone calls, personal and business messages and financial transactions through automated means.

The level of processing and statistical analysis was mind-boggling!

Even though the majority of these messages probably have absolutely nothing to do with the USA – in ANY way - even in the most benign or wildest stretch of the imagination – a just-in-case attitude has caused the USA government to spy on it’s allies - for it’s own “national security” grounds.

…. And you’re complaining about Julian Assange printing something that was given him.

Dogbert, I don’t know you personally, and I don’t mean to be rude to you, but you need to get a grip.

The USA is pissing-off ALL it’s allies at a time when it needs them and threatening a foreign-national isn’t going win any friends.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jan 12, 2011
Governments naturally and compulsively lie to gain advantage both politically at home, and politically/economically/militarily on the world stage. At the same time, they wish to be perceived as virtuous and benevolent (also, to gain advantage.)

Well, sorry. You're either virtuous and benevolent, or you're a Machiavellian sociopath. You can't be both. And it's quite clear which of the two alternatives is the case for any self-interested organization, particularly for any government.

So, why should anyone be surprised to find out their government is a fundamentally malevolent entity? The only real variable, is the degree of malevolence -- not presence or lack thereof.

And so, how does one interpret the "patriots" who choose to pretend their government is fundamentally virtuous? Stooges? Lackeys? Co-conspirators? Naive rubes? None is particularly flattering, nor especially appealing.

One can choose to engage in gang warfare. Or one can choose to reject the omerta.
Modernmystic
2.1 / 5 (7) Jan 12, 2011
So again Assange broke NO LAW.


WOW, the US has now laws against foreign nationals obtaining and disclosing its classified information...

*cough*BULLSHIT*cough*
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 12, 2011
WOW, the US has now laws against foreign nationals obtaining and disclosing its classified information...

*cough*BULLSHIT*cough*
Assange is a journalist. he's exempt for the law you're thinking of.
dogbert
1 / 5 (9) Jan 12, 2011
Assange is a journalist. he's exempt for the law you're thinking of.


Assange is not a journalist. A journalist reports news, he does not create it. Assange is engaged in espionage. Espionage [and conspiracy to commit espionage] is not a facet of journalism.

He is a criminal who is also charged with sexual misconduct.

There is little if anything to recommend Assange.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (4) Jan 12, 2011
Define journalist for us dogbert, in terms of federal law if you would please..
Caliban
5 / 5 (4) Jan 12, 2011
Truly revealing here is the obvious ignorance regarding both US Law and the ongoing activitities -past and present- of the Wikileaks organization.

Most damning of all is the knowing refusal of so many here to address the larger picture, which is that many of you are reacting to the twitches of the "strings" designed to provoke your reactions.

In former times, "Journalism" implied a dogged pursuit of the truth. Sadly, this whole wikidebacle, and the response to it, only too clearly reveals the overwhelming ignorance of the fact that both "Government by, of, and for the People" and "Objective Journalism" have, for the most part, been suborned by powerful interests that don't give a fuck about truth, freedom, nationalism, justice, equality, fairness, transparency, or the health of human or earth.

Assuring that people continuously argue about minor(!) details like this is one of the main objectives of those interests, so we don't demand truth or take more direct control.

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (6) Jan 12, 2011
@dogbert,

When inconvenient information and evidence of crimes ends up classified by those it inconveniences, then revealing it to the world would indeed constitute a crime by definition. Problem is, the illegal and immoral conduct the documents reveal, also constitutes crimes. So does concealment of such information: as it constitutes aiding and abetting of crimes.

When criminals are free to designate, with impunity, as criminals those who would expose them, we shall finally have your notion of law and order. It's what places like China and Cuba have today in spades. I hope I never have to live under such a regime.

Under your definition, every whistle-blower is a spy. You obviously value darkness and secrecy more than you do sunshine and transparency. Loyalty over morality. You'd make a perfect employee for your friendly neighborhood mafia Don.
dogbert
1 / 5 (6) Jan 12, 2011
PinkElephant,
Under your definition, every whistle-blower is a spy. You obviously value darkness and secrecy more than you do sunshine and transparency. Loyalty over morality.


Strange that you would use the word "morality" in reference to betrayal. It is never moral to betray a trust. It is never moral to lie and steal. It is never moral seek to harm others.

Bradley Manning betrayed the trust placed in him. He betrayed his his fellow soldiers, the army and the United States. He lied and stole. He engaged in a conspiracy with Julian Assange to commit espionage. Manning was a traitor and Assange conspired with him in his treason.

Neither of these individuals has any claim to morality.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (6) Jan 12, 2011
It is never moral to betray a trust.
Even if the trust is bestowed by a criminal, relying upon you to hush up the crime?
It is never moral to lie and steal.
Then why should it be immoral to publicly unmask and expose lies and theft?
He betrayed his his fellow soldiers
How, exactly?
He lied and stole.
So do his superiors. Routinely. With impunity. But they are team players: so much better than trouble-makers.
He engaged in a conspiracy with Julian Assange to commit espionage.
Who died and made you judge, jury, and the supreme authority on 'what really happened'?
Assange conspired with him in his treason.
Assange isn't a U.S. citizen; consequently he can't be accused of treason against U.S. Nor do you have any evidence of conspiracy.
Neither of these individuals has any claim to morality.
With your reasoning and interpretation of facts, I'd say you have no claim on sound judgment; never mind morality...
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Bradley Manning betrayed the trust placed in him. He betrayed his his fellow soldiers, the army and the United States. He lied and stole. He engaged in a conspiracy with Julian Assange to commit espionage. Manning was a traitor and Assange conspired with him in his treason.
Bradley Manning has one overriding trust, his oath to protect and defend the Constitution. If he feels that the Constitution has been subverted by these covert acts (which it has) then he has fulfilled his oath.

In short, you're wrong.
dogbert
1.4 / 5 (9) Jan 13, 2011
Can't reason with people who say immorality is moral, lies are truth, theft is not a betrayal, conspiracy is a null concept and espionage is OK if it is directed against the United States.

Hate, apparently, covers all sins ...
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Ok, so if you want to make the accusation you can now point out where I said
immorality is moral, lies are truth, theft is not a betrayal, conspiracy is a null concept and espionage is OK if it is directed against the United States.

Then you can explain what you mean by
Hate, apparently, covers all sins ...
Because the concept of sin against a government is alien to me in all manners. As for hate, the only hate I see is the vitriol you're spewing against Julian Assange and Bradley Manning, the latter of which is being tortured and held without a prompt trial, actions which are considered "sinful" in regards to the laws of the Republic of the United States.
Arkaleus
2.6 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Skeptic Heretic,

(Hands you the silver star)

Thank you for defending the Republic of these United States against the invasion of this forum by foreign invaders and their strange tyrannical ideology. They speak our language, but it's obviously a trick designed to fool the unwary.

I hope they return to whatever primitive eastern nation they launched their attacks from.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
WOW, the US has now laws against foreign nationals obtaining and disclosing its classified information...

*cough*BULLSHIT*cough*
Assange is a journalist. he's exempt for the law you're thinking of.


No he isn't, otherwise all foreign spy agencies would need to do is give their agents press credentials....

Sorry SH that's a ludicrous statement.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
No he isn't, otherwise all foreign spy agencies would need to do is give their agents press credentials....

Sorry SH that's a ludicrous statement.
Then I challenge you to define journalist under US Federal law as I did dogbert.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 13, 2011
Bradley Manning betrayed the trust placed in him. He betrayed his his fellow soldiers, the army and the United States. He lied and stole. He engaged in a conspiracy with Julian Assange to commit espionage. Manning was a traitor and Assange conspired with him in his treason.
Bradley Manning has one overriding trust, his oath to protect and defend the Constitution....

In short, you're wrong.
He wasnt in a position to make that judgement. He didnt single out one incident but chose to release tons of unrelated documents, apparently out of spite. He is not a hero but a criminal because he was not trying to right a particular wrong, he was simply attacking 'authority' wholesale.

This was not the guys who outed Wm Calley and My Lai or the Mahmudiyah killings and to compare manning to people like that does them an injustice. He wasnt trying to right a wrong, he was committing treason for purely selfish reasons.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
He wasnt in a position to make that judgement. He didnt single out one incident but chose to release tons of unrelated documents, apparently out of spite. He is not a hero but a criminal because he was not trying to right a particular wrong, he was simply attacking 'authority' wholesale.
And what was Mark Felt doing? He released information carte blanche about the administration of the US at the time. He's heralded as a hero in whistleblowing.

If this isn't the mind of a whistle blower...

He said Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and several thousand diplomats were "going to have a heart attack" when they discovered that an "entire repository of classified foreign policy is available, in searchable format to the public ... everywhere there's a US post ... there's a diplomatic scandal that will be revealed."
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
No he isn't, otherwise all foreign spy agencies would need to do is give their agents press credentials....

Sorry SH that's a ludicrous statement.
Then I challenge you to define journalist under US Federal law as I did dogbert.


I don't have to define journalist. What he did is obviously a crime journalist or not.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011
I don't have to define journalist. What he did is obviously a crime journalist or not.
Except if a journalist does it, it isn't a crime. If you're saying he isn't a journalist, you have to define what a journalist is and why Assange isn't one.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
I don't have to define journalist. What he did is obviously a crime journalist or not.
Except if a journalist does it, it isn't a crime. If you're saying he isn't a journalist, you have to define what a journalist is and why Assange isn't one.


I'm saying it doesn't matter, again, otherwise all enemy agents would have to do is claim press status. You're making no sense. Were this the case then you could prosecute NO ONE for espionage.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (47) Jan 13, 2011
If he feels that the Constitution has been subverted by these covert acts (which it has) How was the constitution subverted? Secrets are absolutely essential when any govt needs to defend itself against its enemies. Calley thought that one animal was suffering so he attempted to unlock the entire zoo.

And the documents he released have resulted in no formal inquiries into the govt or the military, nor any actions whatsoever against them. Manning is a vandal and a traitor.
Thank you for defending the Republic of these United States against the invasion of this forum by foreign invaders and their strange tyrannical ideology. They speak our language, but it's obviously a trick designed to fool the unwary.
You sure you want to side with people who think and talk like this SH?
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011
You sure you want to side with people who think and talk like this SH?
Who says I'm on anyone's side?
And the documents he released have resulted in no formal inquiries into the govt or the military, nor any actions whatsoever against them.
Gee I wonder why the government didn't punish itself for being bad.
I'm saying it doesn't matter, again, otherwise all enemy agents would have to do is claim press status. You're making no sense. Were this the case then you could prosecute NO ONE for espionage.
It obviously does matter. If I know something that the government is doing, let's say putting pharmaceuticals in the water supply (jsut to pick something fully hypothetical) and that information is classified, should I leak it to the public?

You're saying I shouldn't because it's illegal. I'm telling you that seomtimes the people who pick their own secrets aren't telling you the truth of what they do in your name. The law says it matters. We need a definitio
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
It obviously does matter. If I know something that the government is doing, let's say putting pharmaceuticals in the water supply (jsut to pick something fully hypothetical) and that information is classified, should I leak it to the public?


Sure, but don't claim it's legal. If it's classified then by DEFINITION it's illegal to disclose. I think you're confusing what's moral with what's legal in this case.

You're saying I shouldn't because it's illegal.


No I'm saying it's illegal period. You're kind of putting words in my mouth.

As to Assange's should or should nots that's a matter of opinion. I think he had a political agenda against the United States and it's as simple as that. Nothing he leaked was on the level of putting pharmaceuticals in the water.

All he did was vindictive and put people's lives in danger. He is, in my opinion, a slime bucket and deserves a firing squad, just as that traitor Manning does...
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011
Sure, but don't claim it's legal. If it's classified then by DEFINITION it's illegal to disclose. I think you're confusing what's moral with what's legal in this case.
No, there's a protection specifically for journalists who are engaging in the very same acts that Assange is. prior to leaking anything about the US government Assange and wikileaks have been part of the journalism establishment, constantly used as a source and referred to as a journalism outfit by the news media.
No I'm saying it's illegal period.
But it isn't if he is considered a journalist. To remove that consideration you must establish that he is not a journalist. In the case of espionage that is easily done by determining where the information went and what was proffered in exchange. There has been no exchange for the information. This is not espionage by definition.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
This is a slippery slope you're on here too SH. When you make a statement of general principle that the government shouldn't be allowed to decide what it keeps secret and what it doesn't.

I see your point, I completely agree with you in some instances. However I KNOW you're intelligent enough to see mine too...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (49) Jan 13, 2011
Gee I wonder why the government didn't punish itself for being bad.
Like it routinely punishes people like Nixon and Clinton and Rangel no matter how embarrassing? The US is better at this than perhaps any other country in the world.

"On 29 July 2010, WikiLeaks added a 1.4 GB "Insurance File" to the Afghan War Diary page...the US television broadcaster CBS predicted that "If anything happens to Assange or the website, a key will go out to unlock the files."

-Apparently the secrets in this insurance file are not as vital to justice and human rights as they are to the continued freedom of our hero assange. If he were a true humanitarian he would have released them already.

Sounds to me like hes more of a posturing narcissist who likes to impress women and get laid rather than a selfless do-gooder eh? And he looks to exploit weak minds like manning to do so. Assange started out as a hacker vandal didnt he? tThe kind who gets thrills from screwing up our computers for us-
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011
I see your point, I completely agree with you in some instances. However I KNOW you're intelligent enough to see mine too...
But in this instance you're operating on opinion. If we don't look at the law itself and make sure we define the characters involved in the situation, then we're going to be going on opinion. I will never want someone put to death for my opinion of them. That is antithetical to what America stands for.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
So then SH, let's say the NY Times got hold of specifications on the F-22. It's legit to publish that? What about our missile codes? Military frequencies? Troop deployment plans? Secret service itineraries on the President's movements.

Hey they're journalists...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 13, 2011
No, there's a protection specifically for journalists who are engaging in the very same acts that Assange is.
Youre acting on opinion too. We'll have to wait and see if the govt can successfully prosecute him on espionage or trafficing in stolen govt property. Or whether he can be extradited or sent to guantanamo.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
I see your point, I completely agree with you in some instances. However I KNOW you're intelligent enough to see mine too...
But in this instance you're operating on opinion. If we don't look at the law itself and make sure we define the characters involved in the situation, then we're going to be going on opinion. I will never want someone put to death for my opinion of them. That is antithetical to what America stands for.


Yeah but in this case it's my opinion he committed a crime that put American's lives at risk or even is possibly responsible for deaths. At the least he hurt American interests.

The fact is that he did leak this information. I wouldn't want opinions of him to let him off the hook either.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
So then SH, let's say the NY Times got hold of specifications on the F-22. It's legit to publish that? What about our missile codes? Military frequencies? Troop deployment plans? Secret service itineraries on the President's movements.

Hey they're journalists...
That's quite a different situation and I think you're aware of that.
Youre acting on opinion too.
I'm going by the definitions as I understand them. If oyu have a different definition please produce it. Thus far no one has willingly done so.
Yeah but in this case it's my opinion he committed a crime that put American's lives at risk or even is possibly responsible for deaths.
So are you going to prosecute him for a crime or a potential crime?
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
So then SH, let's say the NY Times got hold of specifications on the F-22. It's legit to publish that? What about our missile codes? Military frequencies? Troop deployment plans? Secret service itineraries on the President's movements.

Hey they're journalists...
That's quite a different situation and I think you're aware of that.


Well that's my opinion, and your opinion, but what about a "journalist" from North Korea, or Iran?
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Well that's my opinion, and your opinion, but what about a "journalist" from North Korea, or Iran?
We're talking about a journalist from Australia right now. Which means he isn't an agent of the state of Australia. In DPKR and Iran the press is a derivitive power of the state. That would be selling state secrets and thus be espionage.

If you want to apply that to Assange, you would have to show intent. State sponsored journalists are not considered journalists in US Fed law. Now if it was Al Jazeera, that would be a journalist.
Arkaleus
1 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
The path the information took to you is irrelevant.

The cogent issue is what do with the information now that you know it.
frajo
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
So are you going to prosecute him for a crime or a potential crime?
He and his ilk don't care for crimes, potential crimes, or non-crimes. They want to punish convictions which are contrary to their own exceptionality thinking which they project onto their government, be it right or wrong.
They'd never call Emile Zola's J'accuse if their own authorities have failed or committed crimes.
And they'd never care if a documentation of another government's crimes would be published.
It's a remnant of the 19th century illnesses of nationalism and chauvinism which drove Europe twice into chaos.
Again, it's a matter of paranoid replacement of a (missing) sound inner self-esteem by the projected esteem of the own nation's grandeur, or "deutschland, deutschland ueber alles".
GSwift7
1.3 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
U.S. government is hypocrite, in fact they call themself 'democratic' but U.S. government is responsible for the Guantanamo prison, an illegal concentration camp that it's a crime against humanity


Actually we call ourselves a republic. It's in our Pledge of Allegiance. Gitmo isn't illegal, it isn't a concentration camp it's a POW camp, and it wouldn't exist if those people weren't trying to kill Americans in foreign countries. Personally I think we should either do it the French way and cut their heads off, or do it the Italian way and feed them to lions. A prison for those people is just a waste.

@ Frajo:

What did you just say? I honestly can't figure that comment out. I know english isn't your primary language, so don't think I'm trying to insult you. I'm just letting you know that your last comment didn't come out well in english. Please try to rephrase it somehow.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
Actually we call ourselves a republic.
We're ruled by the policies of law, not by majority or edict.
Gitmo isn't illegal, it isn't a concentration camp it's a POW camp
Did all the prisoners in Gitmo come from Congressionally sanctioned wars?

If the answer is no, which it is, then Gitmo is not a POW camp. It may serve as one in part, which it does, but that is not the sole function of the base.

Is Gitmo an illegal internment camp? I don't know. I don't have enough information to make a judgement, but what I've seen so far tells me that further clarity and investigation should be done.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (1) Jan 13, 2011
He and his ilk don't care for crimes, potential crimes, or non-crimes. They want to punish convictions which are contrary to their own exceptionality[sic] thinking which they project onto their government, be it right or wrong.
They'd never call Emile Zola's J'accuse if their own authorities have failed or committed crimes.
And they'd never care if a documentation of another government's crimes would be published.
It's a remnant of the 19th century illnesses of nationalism and chauvinism which drove Europe twice into chaos.
Again, it's a matter of paranoid replacement of a (missing) sound inner self-esteem by the projected esteem of the own nation's grandeur, or "deutschland, deutschland ueber alles".


Bah, you're just pissed because I'm willing to call your heroes in China out for the evil bastards they are.

FTR everything you just said about me is 100% false. Thanks for playing the mind reading game fraj, you lose this round.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2011
Did all the prisoners in Gitmo come from Congressionally sanctioned wars


Yes, they are part of the ever expanding Korean war, in the Middle East theater of operations. In our efforts to thwart North Korean totalitarian agression, we've had to detain their foriegn operatives who cleverly disguised themselves as Muslim terrorists.
PinkElephant
4.2 / 5 (9) Jan 13, 2011
Do leaks damage the interests of the bureaucracy that tried to conceal the information? Every time. So what?

Do whistle-blowers break the trust and rules of the bureaucracy against which they release information? Of course. And the point is?

Do the motives or integrity of a leaker really matter in the final analysis? IMHO, they're utterly irrelevant. All that matters, is the final effect.

Is Assange anti-American? Hardly. He's anti-authoritarian, anti-statist, anti-corporatist, anti-crime and anti-concealment. Our government shows its true face and nature by going after Assange in the manner it has. It doesn't seem to matter much whether it's Obama or Nixon in charge; the core of the government remains as rotten as ever.

Some secrecy is always necessary, but we all know that even the American government -- as "liberal" as it pretends to be -- conceals far more than is strictly justifiable. Excessive secrecy is a signature of incompetence, criminality, and corruption.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Excessive secrecy is a signature of incompetence, criminality, and corruption


I agree. Those evil bastards at KFC should tell us what those secret herbs and spices are, and the nazis at Apple need to come clean on the new products they are hiding from us to conceal their incompetence, criminality and corruption.

sorry pink, I just wanted to point out how absurd your comment really was. Oh, and before you say it, my absurd comments above are supposed to be absurd. They are satyrical.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011

I agree. Those evil bastards at KFC should tell us what those secret herbs and spices are,
I just want to know that it isn't the Colonel's special recipe "from scratch".

If KFC had a salmonella outbreak and covered it up, would that be ok with you or would you want an employee to step out and say the meat was tainted before it was used?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (49) Jan 13, 2011
We're talking about a journalist from Australia right now. Which means he isn't an agent of the state of Australia.
Actually we dont know this. Journalists can make excellent spies. Many many examples. And you want to give them state secrets.
That's quite a different situation
There could have been F22 plans in the pile of docs manning stole. He probably wouldnt have known. Or cared.
Do leaks damage the interests of the bureaucracy that tried to conceal the information? Every time. So what?
They also can get innocent people killed. So what? They can also damage good governments and strengthen bad ones. So what? They can also get both you and me killed. So what? Freaking anarchists. Dont you realize that anarchy means that all the anarchists with tattoos and nose rings and mohawks and machetes get the opportunity to steal your women??
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
Actually we dont know this. Journalists can make excellent spies. Many many examples. And you want to give them state secrets.
So you're trying to say that the various intelligence agencies world wide have completely missed the fact that one of the most popular anti-governmental organizers and most prolific internet journalists was a spy against the US working as an Australian state agent....

How deep does this rabbit hole go?
frajo
5 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
I do like some healthy dispute. The higher the adversarie's level the more I have to gain.
But my time ressources are limited and I have to select.
Thus I usually don't respond to people who are unwilling to understand the other side, who change into mud-throwing mode after being defeated intellectually, who show a disgusting misanthropy, and who express a barbaric lack of sense of justice. There's nothing to gain here - not for me, not for them, not for silent observers.
Skeptic_Heretic
4.4 / 5 (7) Jan 13, 2011
There's nothing to gain here - not for me, not for them, not for silent observers.
Conversely, I get an obscene enjoyment out of intellectually slapping someone around for an audience. I really do need to stop doing it. It's so easy and fun but rude and ignorant at the same time.

I really should send Marjon a thank you card.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 13, 2011
So you're trying to say that the various intelligence agencies world wide have completely missed the fact that one of the most popular anti-governmental organizers and most prolific internet journalists was a spy against the US working as an Australian state agent....
The fact is, many famous and influential people have been implicated in passing secrets to enemies. Oppenheimer for one. Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Martin Bohrmann. Henry Hopkins. Niels Bohr.
Again many many examples.

If you think like me you might get the idea after awhile that these well-connected individuals were acting as liaisons or couriers in coordinating efforts by 'Opponents' in making sure that mutual efforts would produce a preplanned Outcome.

For what better way to share privileged information than through intelligence agencies, whose members are trained to keep and pass secrets?
PinkElephant
4.4 / 5 (7) Jan 13, 2011
@GSwift7,

I was talking about "EXCESSIVE secrecy". Trade secrets are not excessive or gratuitous in themselves. However, our government has a habit of classifying far more than it needs to. The "national security" blanket is too big and too versatile, and has been provably abused too often in the past. Or are you going to tell me that you trust your government to do the right thing when nobody's looking?

@otto,
They also can get innocent people killed. So what?
How many innocents would be alive, if our government couldn't conspire for mass-murder and illegal warfare in the dark of its secrecy?
They can also damage good governments and strengthen bad ones.
Don't know about you, but I rather enjoyed the public disclosure that the Saudis have been begging U.S. to attack Iran. One would expect hypocrisy to be even more prevalent among the "bad ones" -- so when hypocrisy in general is outed, the "bad ones" ought to be hurt comparatively more.

ctd.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
They can also get both you and me killed.
Don't know about you, but I'm still alive. A bit more honesty and integrity within both internal and international affairs isn't going to hurt anyone. Call me a naive idealist, but as far as your and my security goes, IMHO the intangible value of an incorruptible and wholesome reputation at least equals if not exceeds even a world-encompassing (and economy-bankrupting) military presence. Indeed, many lives might be SAVED, if only our government stopped bolstering "our monsters" and selling your soul on your behalf to "our devils."
Freaking anarchists.
Oh really? So now public disclosure and government transparency and accountability, are tantamount to anarchy? My, my. I don't throw the word around lightly, but it's quite a fascistic mindset you're developing there, otto.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
Oh really? So now public disclosure and government transparency and accountability, are tantamount to anarchy? My, my. I don't throw the word around lightly, but it's quite a fascistic mindset you're developing there, otto.
He does it on purpose. I'm starting to think his area of research has become an obsession.

That being said, only those who perform acts that are unfounded or evil require secrecy.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (47) Jan 13, 2011
How many innocents would be alive, if our government couldn't conspire for mass-murder and illegal warfare in the dark of its secrecy?
Yeah. Off the pigs. Comes the revolution. Let me rephrase your vitriol: How many innocents would be DEAD, if our govt couldnt ally with others to fight oppression by destroying fascist dictatorships by waging LEGAL warfare in the light of public scrutiny? And how many lives of honorable fighting men and women would be lost if the US didnt choose to wage war as it has always been waged, by not telling the enemy how they planned on destroying him??

This is how it is DONE. Since australopithecus tribesmen hunkered in the bush, waiting to ambush their unwitting enemies, this is how it has been DONE. This is the only reason why we are all here. We are the end result of millenia of tribes who were successful on the battlefield.

You dont want to do it this way? Then this is how it will be done to YOU and your family, your friends, your culture.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 13, 2011
Anarchists. Seriously, would you want your daughter carried off by one of THESE guys?
http
://anarchyofpunk.blogspot.com/2010/09/casualties.html

I always liked the music though...
http
://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxcnYFruM8M
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 13, 2011
That being said, only those who perform acts that are unfounded or evil require secrecy.
Now whos baiting whom? 'ALL of war is deception.' and since 'All of peace is only the preparation for war', unfortunately, then all of peace must necessarily be deception ALSO. :) This includes all of politics, all of economics, all of education, all of religion, etc.

Are you following me so far? OK. The good guys must necessarily do nasty things sometimes, because that is often the only way to win. And you can cry honor and morality all you want, but if your side loses you may not be around to feel smug about it.

Few people often come to grips with the awful potential of warfare to destroy EVERYTHING. There is so much that the human race possesses today that is irreplaceable. There is so much to lose and not enough time or resources to reconstruct it should we ever lose it again. Babel fell and we went on. The Great Library burned and we survived. We may not get another chance.
PinkElephant
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 13, 2011
How many innocents would be DEAD, if our govt couldnt ally with others to fight oppression by destroying fascist dictatorships by waging LEGAL warfare in the light of public scrutiny?
And when was the last time that happened? We'd have to go all the way back to the Korean war. Everything since then -- from Vietnam, through Iraq -- has been both illegal and done for the wrong reasons.
if the US didnt choose to wage war as it has always been waged, by not telling the enemy how they planned on destroying him
How about not getting in bed with the enemy -- while pretending otherwise -- to start with?
The good guys must necessarily do nasty things sometimes, because that is often the only way to win.
Those who choose to do evil, are by definition not "good guys". Good guys win wars by pointing out the evil done by the other side. Modern wars are won in the mind, every bit as much as (if not more so than) they are won on the battlefield.
Caliban
not rated yet Jan 13, 2011
contd
Caliban
4 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
Ok, so I've wasted an untold amount of time tring to post and repost a comment that contained a link to an article that detailed the content of several of the leaked cables, and explicated the context of the same, and expanded upon the lies and or cover up committed by our government in efforts to conceal wrongdoing/criminal activity.

Unfortunately, it won't post to physorg.

A number of you are missing out on any kind of overview of the significance of, or contents of these cables, and are leaping to conclusions about where the criminal onus lies.

It is illegal for you, as a citizen of the USA, to have knowledge of illegal activity, and fail to report it. In fact, it is your duty, and responsibility as a citizen, to do so. Even moreso when it involves misfeasance of taxpayer funds, or the endangerment of the lives of US service personnel, agency personnel, and citizens. This is why whistleblowing is protected by special, specific laws, and is not considered espionage.
Caliban
5 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
If you are interested(and you should be) in reading the article, go to Alternet.org(yes, yes, it is left), and search for the article ;"Wikileaks' most terrifying Revelation: just how much our government lies to us" after reading, you may feel compelled to adjust your opinions regarding this matter.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
According to TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 37 > § 798 of the US code there is no provision for the moral content of the information. Therefore, legally, it IS espionage.
PinkElephant
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 13, 2011
According to TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 37 > § 798
Ok, I've read it. I assume you have too, and understood what's written there. So now explain how ANY of it applies to either Wikileaks or Assange.
there is no provision for the moral content of the information. Therefore, legally, it IS espionage.
Yes. That's precisely the argument used by the likes of Iran and China, to protect their own "state secrets" from seeing the light of day. If you're saying that in this aspect we're no better than they are, I agree.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (47) Jan 13, 2011
It is illegal for you, as a citizen of the USA, to have knowledge of illegal activity, and fail to report it.
Well sure caliban, but I don't know if there was anything specifically illegal indicated in any of those docs. Like I say nobody that I know of has been indicted. There were 1000s of topics in them, most of which manning was almost certainly not aware of. He just grabbed a bunch of stuff and gave it to assange without regard to content. It doesn't appear as if he was interested in helping anyone.

@PE
Yes. That's precisely the argument used by the likes of Iran and China
That doesn't automatically make it wrong does it?
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) Jan 13, 2011
It is illegal[...]report it.
Well sure caliban, but I don't know if there was anything specifically illegal indicated in any of those docs. Like I say nobody that I know of has been indicted. There were 1000s of topics in them, most of which manning was almost certainly not aware of. He just grabbed a bunch of stuff and gave it to assange without regard to content. It doesn't appear as if he was interested in helping anyone.


Otto- you are right, but only to a point. Should we ignore the big fat baby that was thrown out with the bathwater?
Do we know how much time was available (to Manning) to select individual cables, as opposed to a mass, catchall grab?
All of these docs were classified no more secret than "No Foreign Nationals", and were virtually absent risk to life/limb of US nationals.

Have a look at the article I referenced. I think that you will be disturbed by what you read. You may see how it is the leaks can/should be justified.

TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 13, 2011
Caliban
Just read your article. Pretty incendiary stuff but also pretty familiar. One
"...after the United States has spent almost $300 billion on the war in Afghanistan, the Taliban are stronger than at any time since 2001 ..."
-This means that the Taliban can replace battle losses faster than they can be killed or captured. The real reason is not that we are creating more enemies by our actions, but that the explosive growth of pops in the region is creating gens of idle, underfed youth looking to blame their troubles on someone, anyone. Afghanistan has one of the highest growth rates in the world. That is why they have almost always been at war. The region has been stripped bare of forests, vegetation, topsoil.

This will not stop until the culture which creates the problem is destroyed. Vietnam is now quiet, peaceful, productive. I suppose Afghanistan will be one day too.
Caliban
not rated yet Jan 13, 2011
Caliban
Just read your article. Pretty incendiary stuff but also pretty familiar. One
"...after the United States has spent almost $300 billion on the war in Afghanistan, the Taliban are stronger than at any time since 2001 ..."
-This means that the Taliban can replace battle losses faster than they can be killed or captured. The real reason is not that we are creating more enemies by our actions, but that the explosive growth of pops in the region is creating gens of idle, underfed youth looking to blame their troubles on someone, anyone. Afghanistan has one of the highest growth rates in the world. That is why they have almost always been at war. The region has been stripped bare of forests, vegetation, topsoil.

This will not stop until the culture which creates the problem is destroyed. Vietnam is now quiet, peaceful, productive. I suppose Afghanistan will be one day too.

TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 13, 2011
I think that you will be disturbed by what you read.
Sure it's disturbing. This_is_War. It is disturbing to read an article by someone who is unfamiliar with it, or pretends to be. If he were more knowledgeable and more even-handed he wouldn't use the term murder quite so much, and might comment that the Taliban tends to fight while surrounding themselves with women and children. He might stress more the disregard for personal safety exhibited by many afghans who encourage their youth to expose themselves or disregard the instructions of checkpoint personnel, who were just trying not to get blown up. After removing accidents and incidents of collateral damage, the author would have some examples of true malice, many of which have been investigated and prosecuted. And many have not. But certainly far fewer I would think than when the soviets (2M? Afghans dead) or the Taliban were in charge. War is nasty, but it still needs to be waged.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 13, 2011
Picture what the region would look like if the allies weren't there. Hussein dead or deposed, the caliphate reestablished stretching from lebanon to Pakistan. A Moslem empire with nukes, unless another major world had started by then to secure Pakistani nukes or save Israel. World economies collapsed from lack of oil and millions of westerners starving as a result. And a possible nuclear winter to make things worse.

As it is, the west has compartmentalized the middle east, preventing any major consolidations and conjoined movements either east or west. For the moment. We continue to bleed off the most contentious and disaffected, as bin laden and the Taliban conveniently round them up for us and send them into our guns. Sounds kinda like a Plan doesn't it?
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
Sorry about the quoted post up there- physorg is doing some weird stuff.

There are, of course, legitimate reasons to be in Afghanistan, but lying about the real objectives, and real time frame necessary to accomplish those objectives doesn't in any way help. Military action on this scale is simply insupportable.

Outside of America becoming the Security Bureaucracy/Security Force of the much-phrophesied World Government, I really don't see how this benfits Americans, as America is currently constituted.

If you expect vast changes to take place to America in lockstep with this role as world police, then I can easily see how that could come about. But getting from here to there would be extremely painful, and what will be necessary won't be reconcilable with the principles enshrined by the Constititution, and will inevitably require a shift into Fascism.

And all for nothing, for as long as we keep drinking the Texas Tea. There's some goddam irony.

Howhot
3 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2011
As it is, the west has compartmentalized the middle east, preventing any major consolidations and conjoined movements either east or west.

Maybe we should debate consequences of the Cold War and what the aftermath has been. If one has to weigh that; and the policies of MAD. The current make of the mid-east is really a consequence of cold war. If not for leaks though, diplomacy and good analysis we could be dealing with a lot of 50mile wide radioactive holes in the ground.

Howhot
2.8 / 5 (4) Jan 13, 2011
After reading many comments both liberal and conservative, I'm siding with the liberals. Wikileaks is important as a backup plan for a free press. A government without criticism is nothing more than a tyrant, benevolent and oppressive or otherwise.
Ethelred
5 / 5 (3) Jan 14, 2011
Ok, so I've wasted an untold amount of time tring to post and repost a comment that contained a link to an article
Unfortunately, it won't post to physorg.
The link, ANY link, is being blocked. Just delete the H in HTTP. Then anyone interested can copy paste add the h back in and go to the site.

Example
ttp://www.physorg.com/news/2011-01-wikileaks-grand-jury-twitter.html

This appears a vain and worthless attempt to annoy the spammers. Nothing to do with politics.

Ethelred
Ethelred
5 / 5 (2) Jan 14, 2011
Trying a better way this time I am adding a SPACE, so copy paste delete the space or perhaps add DELETE ME would be even better.

Examples
http ://www.physorg.com/news/2011-01-wikileaks-grand-jury-twitter.html

httpDELETE ME://www.physorg.com/news/2011-01-wikileaks-grand-jury-twitter.html

Ethelred
GSwift7
2.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2011
was a spy against the US working as an Australian state agent


There's no reason to assume that he's working for the Australian govt. It could be any country in the world, or even a NGO like AlQida.

would you want an employee to step out and say the meat was tainted


Yes, but I wouldn't want the manager's private emails about company business, such as employee evaluations, printed in the local newspaper.
GSwift7
1.7 / 5 (3) Jan 14, 2011
@ Pink:

I know what you meant. I was exagerating to make the point that there are gray areas in terms of degrees of secrecy and the reasons for secrecy in various situations. In the case of the wiki leaks, he's exposed a lot of stuff that's not so much secret as much as simply being private. I feel the same way about it as I do about paperazzi invading the personal lives of famous people.

You are probably right when you suggest that people get away with corruption because they are able to hide behind the curtain of 'national security'. However, we have to ask ourselves what kind of government we want to have. It's a value judgement, and there's no correct answer. I personally think there's a need for balance between a government that's soft and cuddly and one that's a bit of a snake in the grass. When we deal with countries who don't play 'fair' we need people who are willing to fight back in kind. Sometimes that means bending the rules. Sometimes we may not WANT to know everythi
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.4 / 5 (46) Jan 14, 2011
I really don't see how this benfits Americans, as America is currently constituted.
You could surmise from one perspective that the west learned from ww2 that it is wiser to prevent empires from forming before having to fight them. A nuclear-armed Islamist empire which controls the worlds energy supply, and whose leaders have said they want to impose sharia upon the world, may be impossible to resist.

The alternative which we now see, which is to divide, contain, and disarm preemptively, may well have been seen as the only reasonable alternative. The threat will not subside until the religionist culture which causes the explosive population growth is gone.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 14, 2011
After reading many comments both liberal and conservative, I'm siding with the liberals. Wikileaks is important as a backup plan for a free press. A government without criticism is nothing more than a tyrant, benevolent and oppressive or otherwise.
And the governments that the west is forced to fight are extremely oppressive and tyrannical, and giving them state secrets is inviting defeat. In peacetime i might agree with you. But we are, after all, at war.
Modernmystic
1.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2011
Well Pink,

Since it's the portion of the US code which deals with the dissemination of classified information, and also the portion of the code used to prosecute espionage...and since that's what the whole thread has been about I just figured it was relevant.

Silly me...
Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2011
Since it's the portion of the US code which deals with the dissemination of classified information, and also the portion of the code used to prosecute espionage...and since that's what the whole thread has been about I just figured it was relevant.

Now include the revisions and case law with it and it would be a suitable legal reference. For comparison, The Constitution isn't the Constitution if you omit the amendments.
GSwift7
1.3 / 5 (4) Jan 14, 2011
Continued:

When I say 'snake in the grass' I'm talking about someone like Bill Clinton. I really think he was one of our best presidents in recent history because he was good at getting things done behind closed doors. He was mostly clean and open but had the 'get things done' attitude that makes a good leader. This is my opinion, but I honestly don't think the best leader is always the most honest leader. I actually think it's in my best interest to have top leaders who are willing to get their hands dirty for me. If they make a little money on the side, then that's part of the cost of success. Take a corporate exec for example. If my company has a cut-throat CEO who's willing to destroy the competition, then my job is safer. There's always a risk though. If that CEO gets caught doing something bad, the whole house of cards can come down (enron?). Like I said above, it's a balance between good and evil, so to speak. Right and wrong isn't always clear in good leadership.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 14, 2011
Now include the revisions and case law with it and it would be a suitable legal reference. For comparison, The Constitution isn't the Constitution if you omit the amendments.


Well since it was in response to someone who thinks it's legitimate for civilians to decide when they'll follow that law or not I figured it would be upon THEM to provide such references.

Specifically any US laws that state you're comiting a crime if you don't disclose classified information you find morally objectionable (that was the stupendously idiotic implication made which prompted me to look the law up), and/or any relevant law which allows for the legal dissemination of classified information and what standards are used other than "I think the public should know this even though elected officials don't".

I'm not saying classified information should NEVER be disclosed, I'm saying I don't see where you can claim it's legal.

Skeptic_Heretic
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2011
I'm not saying classified information should NEVER be disclosed, I'm saying I don't see where you can claim it's legal.
Well until you define the term 'journalist" for us we can't. This goes right back to my initial argument that started this entire conversation. There are provisions that depend entirely on the definition as it sits within the court and case law system today. If you don't want to define the terms, then there's no applicable law.

This is why the media doesn't have any real angle on the legality of this story, other than manufactured opinion pieces. They refuse to define their role, probably because it would lead to a massive overturn of the established media, making the majority of them exempt from the journalist moniker and subject to a lot of jail time and fines, plus civil lawsuits for defamation of character.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 14, 2011
Well until you define the term 'journalist" for us we can't.


Well then if no one can define journalist it's never legal I guess...
AngrySparrow
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 14, 2011


... benevolent and oppressive or otherwise.


And the governments that the west is forced to fight...


I don’t want to be rude, but that’s nearly sounding paranoid.

Your country was never "forced" to fight - your country "chose" to fight - for reasons given to you by politicians –

… Ultimately, YOU agreed to it … there was even a compliant media. (the political leanings of current, compliant media are irrelevant.)

This is not lefty or righty “stuff” – this is the way of history.

What we all have to realize is that our opinions have been "spun".

The wording used, has generated a compliant reaction in you and an anti-compliant in me – because of our individual histories.

… and whether we like it or not, the only person who is actually telling the truth and letting us (you and I) make our own minds up, is Julian Assange.

You may not like that Wikileaks exposed these secrets, but hey, that’s life.
PinkElephant
4.4 / 5 (7) Jan 14, 2011
@Modernmystic,
I just figured it was relevant. Silly me...
It's not relevant to either Assange or to Wikileaks, as that part of U.S. code can not be reasonably interpreted to apply to them. It's only relevant to Manning.

@GSwift7,
Right and wrong isn't always clear in good leadership.
You're arguing in favor of benevolent dictatorship. Sorry, but I strongly disagree. Benevolent dictatorships tend to be inevitably succeeded by malevolent dictatorships. The only long-term stable and democratic system is one where the government is fully accountable and transparent in all its actions.

You want information classified as secret? Fine: have a constitutionally mandated, independent and _adversarial_ judiciary body review the request and grant approval. The rule of thumb should be all information must be made public, unless an exception can be strongly justified. But it should by no means be up to the whims of the Executive.

That would be a system I could live with.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (6) Jan 14, 2011
@otto,
Picture what the region would look like if the allies weren't there. Hussein dead or deposed, the caliphate reestablished stretching from lebanon to Pakistan. A Moslem empire with nukes
Sorry, your picture doesn't jive with my understanding of the region. Hussein would never be deposed by radicals; he'd crush them as he's always done. Iran vs. Iraq vs. Turkey vs. Pakistan vs. Saudi Arabia: no way in hell would they ever unite into any sort of empire. They're all adversaries. And oh by the way, it was British and American meddling, respectively, that created the monsters that are modern Iran and Iraq. And incidentally, it was to no small extent American presence in Saudi Arabia and continued unconditional American boosterism of Israel, that feed the pipelines of Al Qaida and every other extremist Islamic group in the region and around the world. Oh, and shall we recall that the Afghani Taliban is blowback from American policy? We literally *invented* the Mujahideen.
Modernmystic
1.7 / 5 (6) Jan 14, 2011
It's not relevant to either Assange or to Wikileaks, as that part of U.S. code can not be reasonably interpreted to apply to them. It's only relevant to Manning.


Well that's one opinion, and a highly debatable one at that as this tread demonstrates.

As to the applicability of the cited code it's not as applicable to Manning as it is to Assange. Manning would fall more under chapter 115.
PinkElephant
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 14, 2011
Well that's one opinion, and a highly debatable one at that as this tread demonstrates.
Let me clarify.

Firstly, Assange in particular, and Wikileaks in general, owe no allegiance to the United States, are not subject to United States law, and are under no obligation to know, respect, or obey the laws or dictates of the United States -- or of any other nation or organization, except the nation(s) where they operate and/or where they claim citizenship.

Even ignoring that glaringly obvious fact, the paragraph you cited refers to communication intelligence and cryptography. To my knowledge, Wikileaks hasn't published any such information. They've published US' own war reports and diplomatic cables -- not any intelligence that US obtained by clandestinely intercepting secret communications of other countries. Literally NONE of the 4 subsections under section (a) of paragraph 798, apply in this case.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 14, 2011
Sorry, your picture doesn't jive with my understanding of the region. Hussein would never be deposed by radicals
Hussein was OLD; his days were numbered. It is doubtful whether the Sunni baathist minority could have withstood attack from Shiite Iran-backed fundamentalists. The ottoman caliph was a Shiite.
Iran vs. Iraq vs. Turkey vs. Pakistan vs. Saudi Arabia: no way in hell would they ever unite into any sort of empire
-And yet the ottoman, which had lasted 500-some years, ended only a few gens ago. Current artificial 'countries' were established by Brits and the French, and have changed many times.
American presence in Saudi Arabia and continued unconditional American boosterism of Israel, that feed the pipelines of Al Qaida and every other extremist Islamic group in the region
-And without them we'd have a much harder time seeking out radicals to everyones benefit, including the Saudis. Oh, and study a little more.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 14, 2011
We literally *invented* the Mujahideen.
Exactly. You're starting to understand now, a little bit, maybe yes? If Leaders didn't invent their own Enemies, which can be controlled, then they would have to contend with the spontaneous ones, which they can't.

Enemies are inevitable given that cultures such as these always grow past the point of stability. That's what they were designed to do, to replace battle losses faster than, for instance, the Mongols. They're doomsday machines.
Modernmystic
1.6 / 5 (8) Jan 14, 2011
Firstly, Assange in particular, and Wikileaks in general, owe no allegiance to the United States, are not subject to United States law,


Let me clarify, there is no need for any one to be a United States citizen in order to be prosecuted by the United States. It's no different than if a foreign national committed murder in the country. What? They're not "subject" to our laws so we don't prosecute them? Sorry, but there's no other way to say it...you're being an IDIOT, or purposefully dishonest one of the two. Were it otherwise we could prosecute NO foreign national for spying.

Anyone else disagree?

Lastly the section cited clearly refers to ANY classified information. Read it again.

"The term “classified information” means information which, at the time of a violation of this section, is, for reasons of national security, specifically designated by a United States Government Agency for limited or restricted dissemination or distribution;"

Nuff said.
Cave_Man
3 / 5 (2) Jan 15, 2011
I dont see how civilian deaths in afghanistan are considered important to national security except that it makes the united states look like a piece of shit murderer.

I for one see that as a higher crime than anything Assange did. Or Pvt manning for that matter.

And before sum1 quotes some crap about the united states not being a single person it IS a single entity comprised of single people and therefore should be held accountable in MORE ways than a single person.
Bog_Mire
not rated yet Jan 16, 2011
MM: Guantanamo. nuff said.
AngrySparrow
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 16, 2011
“Modernmystic”

“Blah, blah, blah

…..

Nuff said. Anyone else disagree?”

Yep, me!

Listen you belligerent blowhard, it doesn’t apply to Julian Assange because he’s an Australian citizen. He’s broken no law in Australia, so you can’t charge him with treason.

Yes “treason” – which is what this is all about.

“It's no different than if a foreign national committed murder in the country.”

Really?

He published information on the internet. That’s hardly murder.

“Blah, blah … risked soldiers lives .. etc.”

Yeah, yeah. Whatever …

You know what? … You don’t want US soldiers taking any risks? ….. then don’t send them into risky situations.

It’s that’s simple.

Don’t want your country being criticized? Then don’t let your government do bad things.

It’s called “maturity” – time to grow up.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 16, 2011
I dont see how civilian deaths in afghanistan are considered important to national security except that it makes the united states look like a piece of shit murderer.
I dont see how civilian deaths in NYC office buildings are considered important to al Quaida national security except that it makes them an enemy of the US as well as anybody willing to harbor them, who could both be considered piece of shit murderers and worth pursuing. So as to keep it from happening again, or something far worse.
I for one see that as a higher crime than anything Assange did. Or Pvt manning for that matter.
I for one see 9/11 as a higher crime than anything the US is doing right now to protect itself.

WE WERE INVITED, by both friends and enemies. The responsibility for death and destruction in afghanistan lies with the people who started the conflict, which was not the US.
He published information on the internet. That's hardly murder.
This will be decided in a court of law.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 16, 2011
Don't want your country being criticized? Then don't let your government do bad things.
-Like not defending its citizens until its too late and 10s of 1000s start to die? Or it finds itself embroiled in another world war, this time with nukes?
It's called "maturity" - time to grow up.
Thats right. Accepting the reality of enemies and the responsibility of defending against them. These are grown-up things- not for adolescent poop slingers like yourself.
AngrySparrow
5 / 5 (2) Jan 16, 2011
TheGhostofOtto1923

"... this time with nukes?"

Using extremes to justify bad-behavior?

No one is saying the USA can't defend itself, but overdoing the wounded-duck act, the woe-is-me chest-thumping routine and pseudo moral-outrage just doesn't cut it with anybody.

It looks and stinks like theatrics ... because it IS theatrics.

Instead of getting mad at Assange for this, you should be grateful that it's highlighted and exposed corruption.

No one is asking you to be happy about such exposure of criminality, but the mature response is to “fight the criminal”, not kill the messenger.

If Bradley Manning actually did do this, which is doubtful, he should be given a medal for exposing criminals, as uncomfortable as it is … not thrown in jail.

.. and you, TheGhostofOtto1923, are ultimately supporting criminality against your government and people by objecting to the truth coming out ...

... and that, whether you like it or not, is the real truth of it.
AngrySparrow
2.3 / 5 (9) Jan 16, 2011
TheGhostofOtto1923:

"Thats right. Accepting the reality of enemies and the responsibility of defending against them. These are grown-up things- not for adolescent poop slingers like yourself."

… and acknowledging that not everyone who disagrees is your enemy – is also a sign of maturity.

… and calling someone a “poop-slinger” ???

“Poop-slinger”? I’ll have to try and ignore that.

That’s just silly.

I don’t want to be insulting – I’m actually laughing too much, but please.

“Poop-slinger”?

Hah!

That’s something a child would say.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 16, 2011
I dont see how civilian deaths in afghanistan are considered important to national security except that it makes the united states look like a piece of shit murderer.


Like any country who fights a war looks like a piece of shit murderer? Name me a single country who hasn't killed civilians in a war. When you find out how to fight one without killing civilians let us know, until then kindly go fuck off, you ignorant "piece of shit" moron.

The astounding moral bankruptcy and stupendous level of concocted self righteousness from effete little pricks like Cave Man (apt. name that) will never cease to amaze me. I keep hoping someday it won't but obviously that day is long off.

I for one see that as a higher crime than anything Assange did. Or Pvt manning for that matter.


That's because it's painfully obvious you are an unqualified fucking halfwit.

Modernmystic
1 / 5 (5) Jan 16, 2011
Listen you belligerent blowhard, it doesn’t apply to Julian Assange because he’s an Australian citizen. He’s broken no law in Australia, so you can’t charge him with treason.


Can you read? Listen to me you illiterate fuckstick, I said he needs to be charged with espionage and YES he is subject to any laws US laws he's broken citizen or not. That's why we have extradition and treaties. Get over it pissant.

Yes “treason” – which is what this is all about.


No, espionage, that's what this is about. Try to keep up.

He published information on the internet. That’s hardly murder


Never said it was, any idiot could see that. I said the PRINCIPLE that we can charge foreign nationals with a crime is well established...and I'm 1000% right.

You know what? … You don’t want US soldiers taking any risks? ….. then don’t send them into risky situations.


Tell the other side to quit blowing up buildings and we'll oblige.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 16, 2011
Don’t want your country being criticized? Then don’t let your government do bad things.

It’s called “maturity” – time to grow up.


Why tell me? Tell the Afghan people if the don't want a shit storm in their backyard they shouldn't have let their government do bad things

"It's called maturity", all kinds of growing up needed here....
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 16, 2011
Don’t want your country being criticized? Then don’t let your government do bad things.


Well then I guess the Afghan people could take a lesson from that...if you don't want a shitstorm in your backyard then don't let your government blow up buildings and kill 3000 civilians belonging to the world's only superpower...
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 16, 2011
Sorry for the "double post", browser or physorg servers are wonky.
frajo
5 / 5 (1) Jan 17, 2011
Tell the [...] people if the don't want a shit storm in their backyard they shouldn't have let their government do bad things
Somehow I like that sentence.
Especially when referring to democracies as that implies more individual responsibility.
frajo
3 / 5 (2) Jan 17, 2011
if you don't want a shitstorm in your backyard then don't let your government blow up buildings and kill 3000 civilians
It wasn't a government.
belonging to the world's only superpower...
Double standards are ok for you.
MorituriMax
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 17, 2011
Even as prosecutors build a case against the Army private suspected of passing hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks, the State Department is promoting a documentary film that celebrates Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg.

Amid its struggle to contain damage from the WikiLeaks revelations, the State Department announced Saturday that "The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers" has been selected as one of 18 films that will tour the world this year as part of its "American Documentary Showcase" program.

Ellsberg, whom the film portrays as a whistle-blower of conscience...

Ellsberg spent months copying the top secret Pentagon Papers on a Xerox machine, and when the documentary was released in 2009 before WikiLeaks' earned notoriety, he recalled it took The New York Times three months to review the study and decide to publish it.
Modernmystic
1.7 / 5 (6) Jan 17, 2011
It wasn't a government.


Of course it was.

belonging to the world's only superpower...
Double standards are ok for you.


Not at all. That wasn't my implication. My implication is that if you kick a 2000 pound bull in the nuts and cry about the fact he proceeded to stomp a mudhole in your ass you're a complete idiot.

As to being "more responsible" for your governments actions if it's a democracy...

If you live in a democracy, specifically America you realistically only have one more bad choice on the ballot to make than someone who lives in a shithole dictatorship...say like China. Pick your poison. That doesn't absolve people for taking ultimate responsibility for the government they live under however. On that point at least we seem to agree.
Caliban
5 / 5 (5) Jan 17, 2011
Here's another reason why so much effort is being put into stirring anti-Assange/Manning/Wikileaks sentiments into a frothing, foaming, frenzy(besides the obvious one of helping people to forget the Rule of Law): anyone with half a brain (including most lawmakers and government functionaries -and, more importantly, those who issue them their marching orders) is well aware that -sooner or later- WikiLeaks is going to come into the possesssion of information of truly "bombshell" importance, of significance sufficient to irrevocably alter the political/social/economic Status Quo.

We may be on the verge of just such a revelation, if this story is at all accurate:

h(DELETEME)ttp://www.alternet.org/world/149559/swiss_banker_gave_wikileaks_information_revealing_crimes_by_world's_most_powerful_people,_as_attacks_on_wikileaks_continue/

Things like this make the existence of WikiLeaks very, very inconvenient for those who would prefer to keep their "doin's" in the dark.
Au-Pu
4 / 5 (4) Jan 17, 2011
Is "dogbert" a government stooge. He and others of his ilk sound like it.
If the US officials were not such a bunch of self opinionated dickheads they would not have put such derogatory comments in writing (electronic or otherwise) and if others were not such a shifty bunch of arseholes there would not be anything to expose.
The problem is to do with the class and integrity of Gov't officials.
In going after Assange et. al. the Government is simply trying to shoot the messenger because they don't like the message.
Wouldn't it be better to put a superior class of people in those jobs and rid the US of those problems?
Going after Assange is simply a cover up, leaving the idiot dickheads in place to continue their stupidities.
dogbert
1 / 5 (7) Jan 17, 2011
Au-Pu,
Is "dogbert" a government stooge. He and others of his ilk sound like it.


No, and making such claims is typical leftist agenda. That is, if you have no argument, attack someone.

Asssange has engaged in espionage. There is no argument you can present which will negate his activity. Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people laud it.
PinkElephant
4.4 / 5 (7) Jan 17, 2011
@Modernmystic,
there is no need for any one to be a United States citizen in order to be prosecuted by the United States. It's no different than if a foreign national committed murder in the country.
Key phrase being: "in the country". Assange and Wikileaks are NOT within U.S. jurisdiction.
Were it otherwise we could prosecute NO foreign national for spying.
Spying on our soil, or spying from half-way across the world? There's a major difference there. For instance, I can post right now that Islam is a load of BS, Mohammed was a loony, and drawings of him look funny. That does not mean that suddenly I am subject to extreme sanction under Pakistani blasphemy laws. I would be, if I actually resided in Pakistan... But I don't, so I'm not.
Lastly the section cited clearly refers to ANY classified information.
But not obtained through ANY method. Read items (a) through (d). The classified info is clearly related to or obtained through communications intelligence only.
MorituriMax
5 / 5 (6) Jan 17, 2011
dogbert opined
Asssange has engaged in espionage.

Evidence, please? Can you post the link to the evidence showing Assange approached Manning and had him steal the cables for wikileaks? Evidence would be nice, especially since you seem so committed to observing the legalities here. One doesn't convict someone of a crime without evidence.
Bog_Mire
5 / 5 (4) Jan 17, 2011
dogbert,s opinion - he likes to call it fact, alas it remains an opinion; one he is entitled to, and as he is unable to support his opinion with facts it shall remain an opinion. Just as the bush administration was of the opinion that Iraq had WMD's, justifying another cluster fuck invasion.... Subsequent supply of facts proved that particular opinion erroneous.
dogbert
1 / 5 (5) Jan 18, 2011
MorituriMax,

Why do you insist on returning to arguments already settled?

Mirriam-Webster
espionage: the practice of spying or using spies to obtain information about the plans and activities especially of a foreign government or a competing company


The whole purpuse of Wikileaks is espionage.

Can you post the link to the evidence showing Assange approached Manning and had him steal the cables for wikileaks?


Since espionage includes "using spies", not just spying, it is espionage if Assange uses information obtained by someone else's spying.

Again, espionage is the purpose of Wikileaks.

Continuing to argue that it is not espionage when it plainly fits the definition of espionage is foolish.
Bog_Mire
5 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert, be very clear on this: the only argument already settled regards Wikileaks' Assange being guilty of any crime has been in your mind. You have decided his guilt in your own mind. His actual guilt remains extremely questionable in legal and moral terms.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 18, 2011
Thats something a child would say.
No, see, you missed the sarcasm, it is something one would say when talking to an adolescent poop-slinger on their level.

You assume that, because something is there to be exposed, that this indicates the presence of criminality or corruption. No such things were uncovered or exposed.

The compulsion to expose secrets probably comes from children wanting to find out whats going on in their parents bedroom when they hear strange noises coming from there. You're not old enough yet to know, apparently, as you cannot appreciate the value of secrecy. By the way, what's your social security #? I'm just curious.
frajo
5 / 5 (3) Jan 18, 2011
Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people laud it.

Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people declare it secret.
Modernmystic
1.2 / 5 (5) Jan 18, 2011
Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people laud it.

Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people declare it secret.


The issue with this whole thread is what constitutes "bad behavior" or more specifically "bad enough behavior worth risking lives to expose".

Guess what :-) none of you, nor me either, have a sufficient definition. We just have opinions. THAT is the closest thing to truth you're going to hear about that.

ON EDIT: There also seems to be some kind of worry from the "other side" that if Assagne gets prosecuted (which despite all the name calling and angst in the world he did commit a prosecutable crime) that there will be a chilling effect on things like this in the future.

Well isn't that why he's a "hero"? He took a chance, he rolled the dice for what he thought was right (personally I just think he's a self righteous prick who hates the US...). You can't have your cake and eat it too (cont)
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (1) Jan 18, 2011
(cont) IOW we need laws against treason and espionage. Sometimes those laws will be applied in accordance with your opinions, sometimes they won't. That's just the way it is. Someone has a better way for it to work let me know.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (3) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert, the core problem here, whether you support Assange or think he's scum is the precedent being set.

PE touched upon it above.

If the US is allowed to dictate legal proceedings in other countries simply because we're the world superpower, would that make it acceptable for China to control legal proceedings over US citizens if the situation reverses?

I think I already know what your answer is.
dogbert
1.6 / 5 (7) Jan 18, 2011
bog_mire,
When you dispense with the meaning of words, you dispense all semblance of rationality. You cannot argue rationally if your words have no meaning.

Assange's activities fit the meaning of the word "espionage". Saying that espionage means whatever you want it to mean is irrational. You have lost the basis of argument by denying word meanings.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 18, 2011
@dogbert,

I suppose next you'll be trying to indict the FBI for espionage against organized crime syndicates...
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert, the core problem here, whether you support Assange or think he's scum is the precedent being set.

PE touched upon it above.

If the US is allowed to dictate legal proceedings in other countries simply because we're the world superpower, would that make it acceptable for China to control legal proceedings over US citizens if the situation reverses?

I think I already know what your answer is.


So if a United States citizen endangered the life of the English Prime Minister by publishing his movements to the IRA...there's no crime there? The English aren't going to want him extradited? He never left our "soil"....

I think you already know the answer to this.

on edit: And for the painfully idiotic people on this thread who insist on comparing my examples to wikileaks I'm NOT saying it's the same thing.

I'm trying to establish a PRINCIPLE of law here so we can get past this bullshit of "if a crime was committed" and move on to "when SHOULD this crime be committed".
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jan 18, 2011
MM, not an apt comparison. Again, goes allllll the way back to the definition of the law and the provisions of the case law.
Modernmystic
1.7 / 5 (6) Jan 18, 2011
MM, not an apt comparison. Again, goes allllll the way back to the definition of the law and the provisions of the case law.


Irrelevant, the point I was actually making stands. Someone was trying to say that you can't commit a crime against another nation as long as you're on your own soil.

I said bullshit, and I'm totally correct.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 18, 2011
Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people laud it.

Bad behavior remains bad behavior even when some people declare it secret.
Lets see... Using word math, we can expand the meaning of this restricted and rather myopic equation to our benefit:

'GOOD behavior remains GOOD behavior even when some people declare it secret.'

Lets try again:

'NECESSARY behavior remains NECESSARY behavior even when some people declare it secret.'

-There. Both equally as valid I would surmise. Also a lot more applicable in this instance; and less paranoid and misarchistic I might add.

-I would also just like to point out that many people are not qualified to judge behaviors of this type as to whether they are good, bad, necessary, or otherwise because they lack the backround, training, or experience or demeanor to do so; although convincing them of this may prove daunting. We should just be thankful that they are in a very small minority.
frajo
2.3 / 5 (3) Jan 18, 2011
IOW we need laws against treason and espionage. Sometimes those laws will be applied in accordance with your opinions, sometimes they won't. That's just the way it is.
IOW we need more brave people who don't help the reckless ones to cover up their reckless deeds. Sometimes those people will act in accordance with your opinion, sometimes they won't. That's just the way it is.

Some people will be held in high esteem for a long time after they've taken their hemlock cup and some people will be remembered for their heinous deeds only or will simply fade away in history.
Modernmystic
1.7 / 5 (6) Jan 18, 2011
IOW we need more brave people who don't help the reckless ones to cover up their reckless deeds. Sometimes those people will act in accordance with your opinion, sometimes they won't. That's just the way it is.


Again it's all a matter of opinion, I don't see anything terribly reckless the government was doing in this case. I see a lot of stupidity, and I see a lot of people's lives being destroyed for no reason other than this slime bucket Assange doesn't like American foreign policy.

Just my opinion.
MorituriMax
4 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert opined,
Why do you insist on returning to arguments already settled?

Mirriam-Webster
espionage: the practice of spying or using spies to obtain information.....


Settled? How do you say it is settled. You raised the point yourself above in the definition you yourself quoted: "the practice of spying or using spies to obtain information"

(1) WHERE is your EVIDENCE that Assange himself spied by hacking into the government computers to obtain the cables?
(2) WHERE is your EVIDENCE that Assange had Manning do it himself, then turn over the cables to Assange?

If you don't have that evidence your own definition defeats your point. I HARDLY consider this settled by the person who says it is when he refuses to address the question, where/evidence? Should be easy since you say it is settled. Links please.
dogbert
1.6 / 5 (8) Jan 18, 2011
MorituriMax ,

I can't help your inability to read and understand. The definition of espionage does not require that the person engaged in espionage either spy or hire spies. It only requires that the person engaging in espionage "use spies" to obtain information.

Assange used Manning to obtain his information -- hence he engaged in espionage.

Now stop talking. You embarrass us with your inability to understand coupled with your YELLING.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jan 18, 2011
@dogbert,
Assange used Manning to obtain his information -- hence he engaged in espionage.
No, he did not "use" Manning. If Manning -- on his own initiative -- printed out all the documents, put them in a box, and mailed them to your house address -- without your foreknowledge or even assent -- would that mean that you can be accused of USING Manning to commit espionage?

Wikileaks is little more than a glorified bulletin board. Its only difference from physorg is that on physorg users post commentary and questions, whereas on Wikileaks users post leaked information.

Neither Wikileaks nor Assange do in any way induce or coerce such contributions. All they do is provide a safe forum, where there is a promise that the identity of the posters will be protected, and their material made available to the general public. People send information to Wikileaks of their own accord, on their own initiative.

You're seriously twisting language and rationality, by calling Assange a spy.
dogbert
1.5 / 5 (8) Jan 18, 2011
PinkElephant,
You're seriously twisting language and rationality, by calling Assange a spy.


Are you having trouble reading and understanding too? I never said Assange was a spy. I said he engaged in espionage. He did and continues to engage in espionage.

Read the definition of espionage again and try to understand it. It does not require the person engaging in espionage to purchase, induce or coerce information. It only requires that the person engaging in espionage use spies to obtain information. That is what Wikileaks does. It was designed from the beginning to engage in espionage.

Bog_Mire
5 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert, by your own definition practically every media org world wide would also be guilty of espionage by propagating leaks PUBLISHED in wikileaks, would they not? As they also PUBLISHED said leaks, thus exponentially increasing their public exposure. Just my opinion....
PinkElephant
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 18, 2011
@dogbert,

A person who engages in espionage is by definition a spy. Before you accuse others of trouble reading and understanding, I suggest you look in the mirror.

Receiving unsolicited information from anonymous sources cannot be reasonably equated to using spies. Using spies entails an operation that actually manages and supports a spy network. Wikileaks does no such thing.
Caliban
5 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
Additionally, I have not heard a single word here in regards to any of the other articles about wikileaks, et al, about the slippery slope hypocrisy of accusing them of treason/espionage -what have you, when, in point of fact, employees of the federal government, on a more or less daily basis, leak confidential, classified, or otherwise sensitive information to the politicians, media and other agencies for the purpose of advancing policy, influencing votes, or to provide advance warning of changes to come. Not legal, but tolerated, encouraged, and indulged in without penalty, day in and day out.

Not trying to change the direction of the debate here, but thought it worthwhile to point it out, and provide some kind of context for all these goings-on.
dogbert
1 / 5 (6) Jan 18, 2011
Bog Mire,
dogbert, by your own definition ...

Not my definition. Mirriam-Websters.

PinkElephant,
A person who engages in espionage is by definition a spy.

You fail to understand the meaning of words again. A spy is engaging in espionage. Not all people who engage in espionage are spying.
MorituriMax
4 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
MorituriMax ,Now stop talking. You embarrass us with your inability to understand coupled with your YELLING.


Ahhh censorship, the final tool of those who have not met the burden of supplying facts to back up their position. And I wasn't YELLING, I was applying EMPHASIS to certain words, if I were YELLING, I WOULD BE WRITING LIKE THIS, YOU OVERBLOWN BUFFOON AND USING WORDS LIKE BUFFOON... but I wasn't. So THERE.
MorituriMax
4 / 5 (4) Jan 18, 2011
dogbert opined,
"Not my definition. Mirriam-Websters."
Not to put a fine point on it, but if you USE the definition, it's yours. You picked it, and you keep misusing it to characterize someone as doing it.
dogbert
1 / 5 (4) Jan 19, 2011
MorituriMax,

First, I don't claim to be the arbiter for the meaning of words. Dictionaries do that. The definition is not mine, it is, as I noted, Mirriam-Webster's definition.

I am not misusing the definition. I am only using the definition because we need to agree on terms if we intend to discuss issues. You choose to disregard definitions and meanings of words.

Espionage includes the use of spies -- that is the definition. I did not make the definition and you cannot make the definition go away because you don't like it.
Bog_Mire
4.3 / 5 (6) Jan 19, 2011
So dogbert, a spy volunteers information to wikileaks and foxnews, both of whom publish said information. (except foxnews profits from such a transaction) who is guilty of espionage?
dogbert
1 / 5 (6) Jan 19, 2011
Bog_Mire,

Read the definition. I have been discussing events. You now want to discuss hypotheticals. Read the definition. Discuss your own hypotheticals.
espionage:
the practice of spying or using spies to obtain information about the plans and activities especially of a foreign government or a competing company
Bog_Mire
5 / 5 (3) Jan 19, 2011
wellll foxnews has been publishing leaks, from many sources including wikileaks and governments for ages. Do ya wanna hang em as well? No more semantics about definitions, just give me an opinion.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 19, 2011
No, he did not "use" Manning. If Manning -- on his own initiative -- printed out all the documents, put them in a box, and mailed them to your house address -- without your foreknowledge or even assent -- would that mean that you can be accused of USING Manning to commit espionage?
Of course you all can yapyap all you want, but hopefully these things will be hashed out in a court of law. As I posted earlier the US is exploring ways of charging assange with complicity in espionage or stealing govt property- so at least it is possible.
soulman
3.3 / 5 (7) Jan 20, 2011
the US is exploring ways of charging assange with complicity in espionage or stealing govt property- so at least it is possible

The US needs to start behaving like a responsible citizen of the world, not as a A belligerent bully.
ubavontuba
2.2 / 5 (6) Jan 20, 2011
the US is exploring ways of charging assange with complicity in espionage or stealing govt property- so at least it is possible

The US needs to start behaving like a responsible citizen of the world, not as a A belligerent bully.
The US sets the standard for world citizenship.

That we wish to make an example of Assange in order to inhibit pillaging of state secrets is the height of responsibility. That we probably won't succeed demonstrates the strength of our core principles.
Caliban
not rated yet Jan 20, 2011
That we wish to make an example of Assange in order to inhibit pillaging of state secrets is the height of responsibility. That we probably won't succeed demonstrates the strength of our core principles.


The paradox at the heart of the issue, uvavontuba.
You've expressed it quite nicely. I only gave you 4, however, because I disagree with your (at least contextual) definition of "responsibility".
ubavontuba
2 / 5 (4) Jan 20, 2011
The paradox at the heart of the issue, uvavontuba.
You've expressed it quite nicely. I only gave you 4, however, because I disagree with your (at least contextual) definition of "responsibility".
I used "responsibility" in the context of "fiduciary duty" - meaning; the legal obligation to act in our own best interests.

I suppose I could have used, "is understandable." but it sounds wishy-washy.

Anyway, I'll gladly accept the 4.

Thank you.
Caliban
4.3 / 5 (3) Jan 20, 2011
The paradox at the heart of the issue, uvavontuba.
You've expressed it quite nicely. I only gave you 4, however, because I disagree with your (at least contextual) definition of "responsibility".

I used "responsibility" in the context of "fiduciary duty" - meaning; the legal obligation to act in our own best interests.

Understood. I would argue that definition should more rightly be based upon the notion of "principle" that you also mention, so that defense of the indefensible isn't a responsibility.

I suppose I could have used, "is understandable." but it sounds wishy-washy.

Anyway, I'll gladly accept the 4.

Thank you.


No problem.

I reckon it just goes to show that there's always hope of agreement about something, at least.

Like, if there were an italic function for these comments, I could probably reduce wording by 20 - 25%. And I'm certain everyone here -and I do mean everyone- would agree that would be a good thing.

Bog_Mire
1 / 5 (1) Jan 20, 2011
QC managed italics. Butt he has ties to a higher authority....
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 20, 2011
the US is exploring ways of charging assange with complicity in espionage or stealing govt property- so at least it is possible

The US needs to start behaving like a responsible citizen of the world, not as a A belligerent bully.


WOW this is the kind of shit that just kills me hehehehe. We get attacked and WE are the bully. WTF did they expect? Turn the other cheek and all that happy horseshit?

They're getting the shit kicked out of them, they DESERVE to get the shit kicked out of them. They BEGGED us to kick the shit out of them. The fact that they're CRYING about getting the shit kicked out of them now is totally irrelevant, totally expected, and funny as hell.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 20, 2011
Receiving unsolicited information from anonymous sources cannot be reasonably equated to using spies. Using spies entails an operation that actually manages and supports a spy network. Wikileaks does no such thing.


So does that mean a guy who gets reliable information that there is going to be a bank robbery and instead of calling the cops to stop it all, because he's a "journalist", instead decides to videotape the whole thing for more exciting copy and footage isn't committing a crime? In fact he jumps for glee when a bystander gets shot because he has it on film, and boy oh boy that's juicy shit...

I mean hey he's not supporting a "network" of bank robbers, he's just advancing his career by using the information he gets right?

That's not even an apt analogy because it doesn't go far enough. In order to be guilty of DISCLOSING classified information you don't have to have gathered it...you just have to DISCLOSE it...it's not fing rocket science.
frajo
3.7 / 5 (6) Jan 20, 2011
The fact that they're CRYING about getting the shit kicked out of them now is totally irrelevant, totally expected, and funny as hell.
The fact that you knowingly accept the killing of innocent civilians in order to feel something "funny as hell" is telling more than enough about your mental state. You are morally no bit better than those who attacked the WTC. You both enjoy killing innocent people.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (47) Jan 20, 2011
The fact that you knowingly accept the killing of innocent civilians in order to feel something "funny as hell" is telling more than enough about your mental state.
Frajo will never understand bitter sarcasm. But frajos own mental disconnect is displayed in a single sentence- frajo disregards the 5000+ innocent civilians killed on 9/11, or even one innocent journalist:
http
://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsgspDyTxDc

-In order to vent frajos rabid misarchy. In war civilian casualties are unavoidable.

One should place blame where it belongs- on those who made war necessary, on those who use their own families as human shields, on those who value death far more than life. Because their culture makes misery a way of life by their insistance that women do nothing else but make and raise children.

THIS is what makes war inevitable. THIS is what causes aggression against others, out of the desperate need to feed children.

Do you see anything wrong with this reasoning frajo?
Skeptic_Heretic
3.5 / 5 (4) Jan 20, 2011
WOW this is the kind of shit that just kills me hehehehe. We get attacked and WE are the bully. WTF did they expect? Turn the other cheek and all that happy horseshit?
If you look at it historically, we have been the bullies. We fought WW1 in their lands, destroying massive amounts of infrastructure. Then we did it again in WW2. Then we started messing around with their government structures so we could ensure who we would be trading with.

We're not blameless in this endeavor, we're not the clear cut aggressors, but we're certainly not blameless.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (2) Jan 20, 2011
SH, that's certainly one opinion, one I've heard before. I can't say I roundly reject it, but there's little there I agree with.

Frajo, weren't you the one saying how people are responsible for the actions of their governments? If you fall back on that idiotic "the Taliban wasn't a government", my obvious answer is they're responsible for THAT state of affairs as well, and for the same reasons.

What's "funny as hell" about the situation isn't the fact that any innocent people get killed anywhere. It's funny as hell that people have the nerve to be surprised by it, and/or bitch about it (like you) after doing what they did, or failing to do what they should have with respect to 9/11.

The fact that you don't see that if we'd done nothing after the WTC that innocent civilians would still be being killed says something unflattering about both YOUR moral state of mind and lack of mental acuity.

You should spend a little more time being critical of religious fascists than democracies.

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 20, 2011
I mean hey he's not supporting a "network" of bank robbers, he's just advancing his career by using the information he gets right?
That would be immoral, but not illegal. And at any rate, he can't be accused of robbing banks (the way you've been accusing Assange of espionage.)
In order to be guilty of DISCLOSING classified information you don't have to have gathered it...you just have to DISCLOSE it...
Now that's interesting, because DISCLOSURE in itself is not idempotent with espionage. Nor can you automatically call it treason: to begin with, the very term "treason" only has meaning in reference to people who are under sworn obligation to honor the very authority they've offended. Foreign nationals can't commit treason against a country of which they are not citizens or even residents. For instance, I can't commit treason against the King of Saudi Arabia, because I'm not his subject.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (3) Jan 20, 2011
Why the HELL are we still talking about treason?

That strawman has been shot, stabbed, burnt, hanged, run over, buried, dug up, sodomized, decapitated, and fed to wolves who were starved for six weeks...

DISCLOSING classified information is a CRIME. Try it sometime, PLEASE. See if you get arrested...lemme know how that works out for you.
MorituriMax
3.9 / 5 (7) Jan 20, 2011
Yep, with all the insults flying around, not a single link anywhere to evidence that Assange (1) told Manning to steal the secrets or (2) stole the secrets himself.

Not one. And not one criminal indictment of Assange by the big bad USA Justice Machine so far. And they are the ones who CAN charge him as a spy and/or terrorist. Hell, he hasn't even been abducted by the CIA and spirited away to one of those black houses all over the world.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.1 / 5 (46) Jan 20, 2011
Not one. And not one criminal indictment of Assange by the big bad USA Justice Machine so far. And they are the ones who CAN charge him as a spy and/or terrorist. Hell, he hasn't even been abducted by the CIA and spirited away to one of those black houses all over the world.
Not yet but they are just getting started. A fence who receives stolen goods from a thief is also committing a crime. Hopefully assange has much time in custody to think up more congenial ways of getting laid. He is a glorified hacker- a thief and vandal who is the reason you need to spend hundreds of euros on protection software.
PinkElephant
4.2 / 5 (5) Jan 20, 2011
DISCLOSING classified information is a CRIME.
By definition of the nation that claims to be injured. However, other countries aren't bound by the U.S. codex. So the real question is, does it rise to the level of extradition? I think to meet that threshold, the crime has to be very serious indeed, from a UNIVERSAL (i.e. nation-independent) point of view. Stuff like theft, murder, rape, etc.

Simply publishing something that another country didn't want published, isn't in and of itself enough of an offense in any reasonable polity. Otherwise, those Mohamed-caricaturing Danish newspaper cartoonists would've long-since been extradited to Yemen or some other hellhole, for public stoning or beheading or whatever. Not to mention, YOU would have to think twice before posting anything critical of the Chinese Communist Party (lest you be extradited to spend quality time in a Chinese gulag.)

BTW, Wikileaks does scrub the information that it publishes, to reduce potential for harm.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 20, 2011
BTW, Wikileaks does scrub the information that it publishes, to reduce potential for harm.
They DO do they? And how are they possibly qualified to know what can cause harm and what can't? They're releasing domestic corporate info that affects the lives of everyone in a corporation. They have no knowledge or understanding of what they're doing and who they're affecting. Will companies be forced out of business due to contracts rendered void? Will some vital program sink because they out some executive?How would they know?
Caliban
5 / 5 (2) Jan 20, 2011
BTW, Wikileaks does scrub the information that it publishes, to reduce potential for harm.

They DO do they? And how are they possibly qualified to know what can cause harm and what can't? They're releasing domestic corporate info that affects the lives of everyone in a corporation. They have no knowledge or understanding of what they're doing and who they're affecting. Will companies be forced out of business due to contracts rendered void?


Dirty business is dirty business, and inherently risky, over and above mere moral hazard.
Being able to cover up wrongdoings don't make them right, or defensible.
A real misfortune for any one who loses their job because of ownership's criminality, but it can and should happen, nevertheless.
Why don't we change the law so that former employees can sue for compensation out of the offenders' personal holdings? That would be fair.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (4) Jan 20, 2011
If you look at it historically, we have been the bullies. We fought WW1 in their lands, destroying massive amounts of infrastructure. Then we did it again in WW2. Then we started messing around with their government structures so we could ensure who we would be trading with.

We're not blameless in this endeavor, we're not the clear cut aggressors, but we're certainly not blameless.
Wow. You REALLY need to take a history class.
Skeptic_Heretic
3.7 / 5 (3) Jan 21, 2011
Wow. You REALLY need to take a history class.
You're really going to try to dispute this? Look in the mirror next time you say that.
Ethelred
4 / 5 (4) Jan 21, 2011
We fought WW1 in their lands, destroying massive amounts of infrastructure
No. We mostly fought over previously fought over land. Land in France taken by Germans and then churned for years. We were invited by France.
You're really going to try to dispute this?
I just did. You are wrong on WWI. WWII, yes we did destroy a lot of enemy infrastructure. Too effing bad. We interferred with the occupied countries new governments. GOOD the previous sucked and were guilty of crimes against humanity.

Otto
A fence who receives stolen goods from a thief is also committing a crime.
Assange didn't break any laws in the countries he living in. If he broke US laws that is for the courts to decide in the OTHER countries wether he can be sent to the US for trial. In which case Fox and ANYONE else that printed anything from Wikileaks should be tried.

I am ambivalent on this situation BUT I have a problem with some of the alleged logic on both sides of this discussion.

Ethelred
Bog_Mire
5 / 5 (3) Jan 21, 2011
This is the crux of the problem in USA charging Assande with anything. They would have to suspend belief and the definition of the most basic tenets of its legal system. But, I suppose that has been done before.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (2) Jan 22, 2011
Wow. You REALLY need to take a history class.
You're really going to try to dispute this? Look in the mirror next time you say that.
Yes, I'll dispute it. My Grampa was a WW1 Doughboy and my Dad was in the WW2 Army Air Corps, so it's a personal matter.

Ethelred is right.

The US joined WW1 quite late, breaking a long held stalemate. The infrastructure was already in ruins when we arrived.

We also joined WW2 quite late, after Germany had bombed, murdered, and pillaged most of Europe into ruins. And after an Axis Ally (Japan) brazenly attacked us. And after Germany itself, declared war on the United States (December 11, 1941).

So I'll say it again: Learn a little history before you spout off!
Caliban
5 / 5 (2) Jan 22, 2011
Yes, I'll dispute it. My Grampa was a WW1 Doughboy and my Dad was in the WW2 Army Air Corps, so it's a personal matter.

That's a nice pedigree for your fightin' forefathers, QC, but I can do better, and probably a few more people here could, as well.

To wit: Grandfather: Doughboy. Uncles: WWII Vets My father came home from WWWII(AAC), but then continued on active duty through Korea, Viet Nam, and all the other odds and ends in between, so it's a personal matter.

The actual truth of the matter is somewhere in between, and for every good thing done by the US or its representatives, there was an atrocity.

Sure there was massive infrastructure damage prior to aour arrival on the European scene, but we certainly finished -and utterly- the job, didn't we? And Let's not forget Japan, Okinawa, Guam, the Phillipines -and then merrily troop on to Korea, and then Viet Nam(we'll stick with the best-known).

It's a lie that we rode in with white hats and made everything right.
[/blockquote]
ubavontuba
1.7 / 5 (6) Jan 22, 2011
That's a nice pedigree for your fightin' forefathers, QC...
Who are you calling QC?
The actual truth of the matter is somewhere in between, and for every good thing done by the US or its representatives, there was an atrocity.
That's categorically not true. Clearly, the US and its allies saved the world from evil oppression.
Sure there was massive infrastructure damage prior to aour arrival on the European scene, but we certainly finished -and utterly- the job, didn't we?
Only to protect ourselves and others.
And Let's not forget Japan, Okinawa, Guam, the Phillipines
So what then? Would you have had us surrender with the first bomb dropped on Pearl Harbor?
It's a lie that we rode in with white hats and made everything right.
Nope. that's exactly what we did (although the hats were often green and made of metal).
frajo
5 / 5 (3) Jan 22, 2011
Clearly, the US and its allies saved the world from evil oppression.
In WW2, it was the Russians who contributed the most to defeat the Germans. Thus, "the Russians and its allies" is more precise from a historical perspective.
Besides, Germany never would have been able to rule the world. To suggest such a thing is unnecessarily enhancing the Germans' global importance.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jan 22, 2011
No. We mostly fought over previously fought over land. Land in France taken by Germans and then churned for years. We were invited by France.
You're really going to try to dispute this?
I just did. You are wrong on WWI. WWII, yes we did destroy a lot of enemy infrastructure. Too effing bad. We interferred with the occupied countries new governments. GOOD the previous sucked and were guilty of crimes against humanity.
You're wrong Ethel. Flat out wrong.
British India alone, which included Pakistan and Bangladesh fought for us, The Ottoman empire was devastated, the various Czech groups were involved, there were probably just as many muslims as catholics fighting in WW1 and within their territory at the behest of the west.

For you to agree with uba and try to state this didn't happen is a complete ignorance of history.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 22, 2011
Yah. Let me spin this a little different.

The US had little to do with the course of either euro war. We were 'invited' to replace Russian forces after the revolution forced them to leave. Germany was in fact winning until forced to capitulate by communist insurrection back home.

Frajo for once states truthfulness; in ww2, 90% of Germans who died were killed by Russians. The Allies did modulate the progress of the eastern front by invading Italy and by bombing key industries at the proper time, in keeping with Trumans statement before our involvement that if one side was losing we should help the other. We only invaded Normandy after the conflagration had burned itself out, and this was to prevent the soviets from continuing to the coast.

The Germans stated goal was to save it's country from communism, and they did save fully half of it, as well as all of western Europe. Some would see this as a pyrrhic victory which enabled the eventual fall of the USSR.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 22, 2011
Crap. Truman wanted to ensure a thorough German/Russian depletion and so wanted to help whichever side was losing. He said:
"If we see that Germany is winning we ought to help Russia and if Russia is winning we ought to help Germany, and that way let them kill as many as possible, although I don't want to see Hitler victorious under any circumstances. Neither of them thinks anything of their pledged word.
As quoted in The New York Times (24 June 1941); also in TIME magazine (2 July 1951))

-A most apt expression of why these wars are Planned and the results Predetermined. The existing cultures could produce enough excess, hungry, angry young men to support and fight 2 horrible wars and 1 horrible revolution in only 2 generations. The same can be said of what happened in china and japan in the 1st part of the 20th century.
Cont
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (45) Jan 22, 2011
Those cultures were largely destroyed throughout Eurasia, courtesy of both conflict and communist martial law, and the abortion programs which they would have prevented have kept things peaceful and stable ever since, thus enabling incredible technological progress social consolidation.

This beneficial Outcome is ample evidence of Planning. But when one studies them in detail with the possibility in mind, it becomes obvious, as when one considers any of the various alternatives.

The same stage is being set in the middle east, and the next Show may be an even bigger blockbuster. I wouldn't want a front seat though; but we might not have a choice.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 22, 2011
One other point that needs to be made: one needs to accept the fact that the existence of these obsolete cultures has always made war INEVITABLE. They either developed to modulate reproduction rates in response to natural attrition pressures, or they were consciously designed to maximize the reproductive rate as a method of defensive aggression, of growing and replacing battle losses faster than the enemy. It is only now that the world has the option to adopt a culture which gives people meaningful alternatives to producing large families.

These kinds of virulent cultures still exist as we all know. And traditionally they have never yielded except by force, as the nature of their existence is as the result of force over others. They have survived because they were the better at conquest than others. This is why armed conflict, in one form or another, is still inevitable.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (3) Jan 22, 2011
Wow. So much revisionist history! Seriously, you guys need to take a class, or something.

For instance otto's Truman reference was something he said when he was a senator from Missouri. Whereas otto implies it was said by someone who had the power to plan the war out, ahead of time.

And, this was during the US', pre-entry into the war when American sentimnet ran strongly in favor of isolationism, particularly in the Midwest.

http:/en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opposition_to_World_War_II#Isolationism
Caliban
not rated yet Jan 23, 2011
That's a nice pedigree for your fightin' forefathers, QC...

Who are you calling QC?


Quite right. My apologies for mistakingly addressing you as QC, ubavontuba.

ubavontuba
1 / 5 (3) Jan 23, 2011
You're wrong Ethel.
No, you're wrong. You can't blame the US for starting a war that had been going on long before we joined and for a war fought in regions we didn't control or fight in.
...there were probably just as many muslims as catholics fighting in WW1 and within their territory at the behest of the west.
What do you think those people were? Remotely controlled automatons? Maybe you think they had no free will? They most certainly did.

There were Muslims who fought for the British Empire. Some deserted or mutinied though, when they thought they might have to fight other Muslims.

http:/www.bbc.co.uk/history/worldwars/wwone/india_wwone_01.shtml#four

For you to agree with uba and try to state this didn't happen is a complete ignorance of history.
Nope. It's become quite clear whom the ignorant ones are here ...quite clear indeed.

Why don't you try doing a little research before you spout off again.
Ethelred
4 / 5 (2) Jan 23, 2011
You're wrong Ethel. Flat out wrong.
Terribly sorry but NO. Or I wouldn't have brought it up. You are mixing up two separate wars.
British India alone, which included Pakistan and Bangladesh fought for us
No. Britain fought for Britain not us and not for the French either even though they did the vast majority of their bleeding on French soil. There was no Pakistan and Bangladesh didn't exist even when I was young. I remember it being called East Pakistan and then breaking away, aided by India. Both were carved out of India, during the Partitioning, with a massive spilling of blood mostly, but not entirely, due to Islamic fanaticism. The sort we still see today.
The Ottoman empire was devastated
Yes. Partly by pissing away money, British blockades, and of course Lawrence in Arabic lands but the Brits on Turkish soil mostly died. We had nothing to do with it except to trade with the Allies. From which we must have made a lot of money.

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Ethelred
4.3 / 5 (3) Jan 23, 2011
the various Czech groups were involved,
Oh they and the Serbs were always involved. They like killing each other. Again we had nothing to do with it.
there were probably just as many muslims as catholics fighting in WW1
And far more Protestants. Did that have a point?
and within their territory at the behest of the west.
Good. The Turks were pricks. There is a reason Lawrence was able to unite so many Arabs against them.
For you to agree with uba and try to state this didn't happen is a complete ignorance of history.
For you to claim I had anything wrong is ignorance. The US didn't enter the combat in the Middle East in The Great War. Our troops were only in France and maybe some German territory. Territory that had been fought over for three years already. Which made it very hard for us destroy infrastructure since there wasn't left. The area that the troops moved back and forth over was filled with dead bodies, rats, and big holes in blood fertilized soil.

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Ethelred
5 / 5 (2) Jan 23, 2011
We are NOT Britain. Tony Blair was NOT the Prime Minister. Bill Clinton was NOT the President. Neither was Bush. Heck even President Wilson wasn't the President much of the time. His wife was.

You seem to be mixing up WWI and WWII. I didn't. I had them separate. They are two different things and you seem to be attacking what I said as if it was WWII I had been talking about. In WWII the US devastated infrastructure. There simply wasn't anything to devastate in WWI by the time the US got involved.

Again WE ARE NOT BRITAIN. Britain fought for British reasons and considered us to be second class at best early in WWI. We did not become buddy buddy till shortly before WW TWO.

Ubavontuba

I am pretty sure that SH was blurring my remarks about WWI with those about WWII but I could be wrong.

Frankly you are both loosing track of what you were arguing about.

No I would never do that myself.

You two can go back ranting about things you and the US government have no control over.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (45) Jan 23, 2011
For instance otto's Truman reference was something he said when he was a senator from Missouri. Whereas otto implies it was said by someone who had the power to plan the war out, ahead of time.
No scoobydooba you've got to try to think bigger than presidents and smaller than holy godmen. There is Something in between that decides these things, Something wholly human-contrived. You can read all about it in your holy book, you know the one that is about nothing else but war and revolution?

Truman was a good Soldier who was very good at following Orders and saying the right thing at the right time.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (45) Jan 23, 2011
And, this was during the US', pre-entry into the war when American sentimnet ran strongly in favor of isolationism, particularly in the Midwest.
Indeed, before both the wars, and always a good way of diverting the publics attention, of lulling them into complacency, while preparations are being made to join it. 'Let the idiots kill each other off. We're above all that.'

And then along comes a Reason that makes involvement essential and unavoidable. Why is that? Just when you start to think that your generation is the one that is smart enough and good enough to avoid war, along comes an enemy that you absolutely have to fight.

'No matter what the public sentiment, it is quickly and thoroughly changed by Events of sufficient magnitude.' Events which are all too easy to stage when Leaders on both sides are actually members of the same Team. Empire.
ubavontuba
1.2 / 5 (5) Jan 24, 2011
And then along comes a Reason that makes involvement essential and unavoidable.
So what are you implying Would you have had us surrender with the first bomb dropped on Pearl harbor?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 24, 2011
So what are you implying Would you have had us surrender with the first bomb dropped on Pearl harbor?
Uh no, would you? Im implying that we had absolutely no choice but to enter the war after Pearl. And luckily, even though all the obsolete battleships were destroyed, giving us the opportunity to build new state of the art ones, all the valuable carriers were safely and conveniently at sea. And it turns out that carriers were essential to winning the Pacific war.

Pearl gave us an unequivocal reason to fight which immediately silenced all the isolationists. And we were able to construct superior weapons using the latest technologies expressly because we were told that we would never need to fight, thanks to isolationist sentiment. Pretty slick eh?

If war is Inevitable because of population overgrowth then it behooves one to decide where, when, and how it starts, and how it will turn out. This was originally called diplomacy long long ago; now it is called Management.
ubavontuba
2.3 / 5 (6) Jan 24, 2011
Pretty slick eh?
So you see conspiracies in every major historical event, rather than just history? It doesn't occur to you that sometimes, stuff just happens?

I mean seriously, just how much control over history do you think people really have? Do you have similar abilities to minutely predict and control your own future (much less everyone else's)? Did you know I was going to type these exact words and did you manipulate me into doing so? No? Do you know anyone with this capability? Who are these "special" people with these abilities, and why are they different than the rest of us? Doesn't it occur to you ...you're attributing these people with godlike abilities?

Are you looking for someone to worship, otto?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 24, 2011
So you see conspiracies in every major historical event, rather than just history? It doesn't occur to you that sometimes, stuff just happens?
Yabut, if the most perilous is also inevitable, then it makes sense to try to control it as much as possible. We build dams to prevent floods. Joseph and pharoah stored grain because they knew that famine usually follows feast. They didnt need a god to tell them this, except maybe metaphorically.
Do you have similar abilities to minutely predict and control your own future (much less everyone else's)? Did you know I was going to type these exact words and did you manipulate me into doing so?
You silly godder.
Who are these "special" people with these abilities, and why are they different than the rest of us?
Theyre Leaders. Leaders long ago would have found that they shared the same intractable problems caused by overpop. They would have begun dealing with them. They intermarried. They became a tribe unto themselves and moved to
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 24, 2011
Switzerland? Tibet? Vatican City? No matter- Theyre out there somewhere.
Doesn't it occur to you ...you're attributing these people with godlike abilities?
But your god created us in his own image so whats the problem? Diplomacy, collusion, planning, the mafia- these are all human things. The euro dynasties were all intermarried, all decended from charlemagne. It was like a single crime family had control over europe for centuries.

How hard would it have been to stage wars to manage the people? They often didnt speak the language of the people who fought and died for them. The delphic priesthood did it to greeks for 1000 yrs.
Are you looking for someone to worship, otto?
Why would any self-respecting god require any human to worship it? Who would want to worship such a pompous insecure fop? These People- the People who Run the World- They dont require worship. Only participation, which They can make mandatory. Like with Pearl and 9/11. Theyre very good at it.
ubavontuba
1.8 / 5 (5) Jan 24, 2011
otto, you're not wearing your foil hat today. I can tell you're not. I see your mind. I'm reading your mind right now. I will now make you type words onto the internet. You are under my control...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 24, 2011
otto, you're not wearing your foil hat today. I can tell you're not. I see your mind. I'm reading your mind right now. I will now make you type words onto the internet. You are under my control...
Jeez ubu, doesn't your god frown on mysticism (except for Kabbalah)? Aren't you afraid you'll lose your place in line? He might turn you into a pillar of mustard or some other condiment.
ubavontuba
2.3 / 5 (6) Jan 24, 2011
otto, you're not wearing your foil hat today. I can tell you're not. I see your mind. I'm reading your mind right now. I will now make you type words onto the internet. You are under my control...
Jeez ubu, doesn't your god frown on mysticism (except for Kabbalah)? Aren't you afraid you'll lose your place in line? He might turn you into a pillar of mustard or some other condiment.
Excellent ...EXCELLENT! (dry cackle) It is as I have foreseen! Every word in its place. Very good, otto. Very good.

Let's see... what next... ah, yes...
Ethelred
not rated yet Jan 25, 2011
I will now make you type words onto the internet.
Terribly sorry to disagree with you but that is simply wrong.

It is the Orbital Mind Control Lasers that are telling Otto what to do. Those Lasers are controlled by Intel Chips and programmed with Microsoft software. This is Otto's silly error. There is no Illuminati. There is no Secret Empire. The is only the Pentium Group. I proved this on the Comport Forum nearly a decade ago.

I would post a link to my stunning proof but Andy Grove and his Minions at the Delphi Forums have suppressed searches.

World Wide Conspiracy requires a World Wide Web. Thus Otto is very wrong. There could be no Vast Global Conspiracy until Darpanet was created.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 25, 2011
Ah you're just making fun of me. Refute something I've said in your slice and dice style. See if you can discount the Philosophy of inevitability and the desire to prepare for it. Or if you can't, bask in the wonderful mystery that is Empire.

We see preparation for the future at all levels of human endeavor. We expect it and are petulant when the leaders we can see do not do it for us. But you fail to accept that the most significant, and most ominous of Inevitabilities need to be prepared for as well? Noah built his ark because it looked like rain, yes?

Economic cycles, consisting of growth, decay, collapse, and rebirth, are and have always been unavoidable, then wars are and always have been unavoidable. The propensity of the species to repeatedly grow beyond it's means is the cause of this. This has been obvious to recordkeepers since the beginning of civilization. Yes or what?
Ethelred
5 / 5 (1) Jan 25, 2011
Ah you're just making fun of me
No. Nooo, no. YES.
Refute something I've said in your slice and dice style.
Well if you insist.
See if you can discount the Philosophy of inevitability
It is the sound of inevetatiblity Mr Anderson. It is invevitable that I will mispell inevitable.
and the desire to prepare for it.
Which will do you no good because it is inveitable.
Or if you can't, bask in the wonderful mystery that is Empire.
Rule Britannia Britannia waves the rule.
We see preparation for the future at all levels of human endeavor.
All the way out to the next fiscal quarter. With the occasional fantasy five year plan. Not to be confused with OMB ten year bullshit casting.
We expect it and are petulant
Well I see people getting petulant with my posting techniques. But I don't.
when the leaders we can see do not do it for us.
Why should they do all the work.

More bovine fecal matter to come
Ethelred
5 / 5 (2) Jan 25, 2011
But you fail to accept that the most significant, and most ominous of Inevitabilities
Red haired guys with cool sunglasses? I prefer this version.

httpEATME://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BlpyGhABXRA&fmt=34

Noah built his ark because it looked like rain, yes?
No. There was no Noah. Only Zuul.
Economic cycles, consisting of growth, decay, collapse, and rebirth,
Tell that to the Anasazi. But make sure they don't eat you or you won't be reborn.
are and have always been unavoidable
We did a good job of avoiding them since 1930 till the RightWingNuts got their way for too long.
then wars are and always have been unavoidable.
Nonsense. All wars are avoidable. Give the attackers what they want.
The propensity of the species to repeatedly grow beyond it's means is the cause of this.
Kevin and Mabarker will burn you at the stake for that.

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Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jan 25, 2011
Rule Britannia Britannia waves the rule.
I thought it was Hail Britannia Britannia rules the waves.
Ethelred
3 / 5 (2) Jan 25, 2011
This has been obvious to recordkeepers since the beginning of civilization.
No. There is not one sign of that in Cuneiform. I can assure you of this because have a LOT of clay tablets with funny looking divots in them. And if I don't have them I can always go over a couple of counties to where I can get clay and make some. Like the guys that saw Joseph Smith's bronze tablets you won't know the difference.
Yes or what?
In the word of the brilliant action comedy Into the Night. "Or what" is the operative phrase.

And that is a perfect example of a rebuttal fully in keeping with the research level of the original. Actually that isn't true. It has far more sources than the original.

Ethelred
Ethelred
not rated yet Jan 25, 2011
I thought it was Hail Britannia Britannia rules the waves.
I prefer my version. It fits the the post Wooden Ship and Iron Men era better. Vicky and Gladstone aren't around anymore.

Heck the Victoria Cup is called the America's Cup.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
Aah come on. You can do better than that.
Which will do you no good because it is inveitable.
See, here is where it gets interesting. Humans over time get to know their environment better and better. They can learn the best times for planting and harvesting for instance. They CAN record info for use from gen to gen, as they did on your clay tablets.

"A large body of hundreds of thousands of texts in the Sumerian language have survived, such as personal or business letters, receipts, lexical lists, laws, hymns, prayers, stories, daily records, and even libraries full of clay tablets."

Leaders were in charge of meting out the harvest from communal farming. They recorded what went into the graneries and who got what when it was doled out. And they were the first to lament the problem of overpopulation...

"... man multiplied at such a rate that the din he made kept Enlil sleepless."

-People can build dams and graneries and arks to prepare for the inevitable.
cont
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
-And leaders can look at their records over a few gens and discern the obvious. The populace grows faster than the food supply. THAT is the reason they are restless and THAT is why they blame the king. He took it upon himself to be in charge of the food, and now the food is running short. His records tell him its not his fault.

He laments the withered fields, saltified by irrigation. The forests gone, cut for fuel and grazing land. His people want him to attack neighboring tribes and take what they have, but the king knows that their kings are wrestling with exactly the same problems that he is.

What is the Solution? Think man, think!

His records tell him of past wars and the ruin they caused, and of how the Problem only returns time after time. And each time Progress is lost, Knowledge is lost, and the land becomes less able to recover. The Inevitable becomes obvious. Neither his tribe nor any tribe will survive this progression of cycles unless a Solution can be found.
==>
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (45) Jan 25, 2011
So, like leaders will tend to do, they get together and talk. They realize that they themselves are not enemies. They are bitter because of the peoples ingratitude. And after only a little while they realize that they have a lot more in common with each other than with the people of their tribes.

They realize that it is the people who are the source of their problems, and that they are in the very unique position of dealing with the source itself. All they have to do is maintain the appearance of loyalty to their constituents while acting as Leaders IN CONCERT to manage them. They can maintain the illusion of enemies while cooperating to mitigate the effects of overpopulation.

If there are too many people, then the number of people will be reduced one way or another. It will either happen as order collapses and they kill each other off as always; or organized conflict can be Planned, channeled, and the Outcome can be safely Predetermined.

Ergo, Empire. Questions, comments?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 25, 2011
Ergo, Empire. Questions, comments?
Write a fiction novel about it; make some money if you're any good.

But until you have some evidence of actual collusion (e.g. an authentic copy of the instruction manual passed on to incoming leaders), it's only a fantasy.

Here's an interesting thing: Japanese feudal wars. At the end of such conflicts, traditionally the warlord on the losing side either fell in battle, committed seppuku, or was executed by the winner (oh, and ditto for his samurai.) If I were a leader going into a conspiracy, I'd at least structure the deal so as to ensure my own survival. Otherwise, what's the point? (And never mind all the poisonings and assassinations among the ruling class, the ninjas, etc.)

Until quite recently in history, most wars never ended in a peace accord or a standstill. They went on until one side was utterly defeated and conquered. The conquered didn't tend to fair too well -- whether they be peasants, or kings.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jan 25, 2011
Basically, your idea collapses upon itself under game-theoretic analysis. It's an unstable equilibrium. You think a situation of colluding leaders is sustainable, when in fact it's not.

If you and I were both conspiring as kings to cull each other's people in a mutually-planned war, you have no guarantee that I wouldn't make a secret alliance with another leader behind your back, and actually conquer your land, chop off your head, and murder your family, then take your wealth and your land for myself and my barons. Nor do I have any guarantee that you won't do the same to me.

Thus the most glaring error in your thinking is that you presume trust between leaders. Whereas in fact nobody gets to be a leader without backstabbing competitors and stepping on corpses all the way to the top. The leader class tends to concentrate the choicest sociopaths. And amid sociopaths the key operative concept is not trust or even collusion: they're all about paranoia, betrayal, and megalomania.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
But until you have some evidence of actual collusion (e.g. an authentic copy of the instruction manual passed on to incoming leaders), it's only a fantasy.
Evidence would necessarily need to be forensic as such a govt would be actively ensuring its own secrecy.

Nevertheless, Ive offered alternate explanations here many times for events we're all familiar with, like Pearl, which make a LOT more sense than the official spin. Taken alone, one by one, they seem farfetched. Sure. But there are dozens of them, all conforming to the above philosophy... cooperation to resolve mutual problems. This behavior is the NORM in human society.

Tribes with greater internal cohesion, cooperation, trust, and honor are the ones which consistantly prevailed against their enemies. A tribe of Leaders sharing these qualities and united against the people, would be fearsome indeed.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
nobody gets to be a leader without backstabbing competitors and stepping on corpses all the way to the top. The leader class tends to concentrate the choicest sociopaths. And amid sociopaths the key operative concept is not trust or even collusion: they're all about paranoia, betrayal, and megalomania.
And how do know this is true? Have you ever known leaders personally, or are you just responding to everything youve ever been fed about leaders?

First off, insanity tends to be unreliable and inconsistant. Second, people who make it to the top, whether in business or politics, tend to be very good at what they do. They are good because they Enjoy what they do. They would rather be working than enjoying the money they make doing it.

The lie that power corrupts is a form of deception. Its a convenient excuse for blaming the lieutenants we can see, who are only playing the parts they are given, and ignoring the possibility that there may be a General Staff above them.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
Whereas in fact nobody gets to be a leader without backstabbing competitors and stepping on corpses all the way to the top.
Honestly, if this were true, the world would be a ruin, but its not. We have seen incredible strides in technology that will soon enable us to leave the planet and establish permanent footholds elsewhere. We will no longer be trapped and quite so vulnerable. The world was forceably pacified time and again to allow this to happen. Alexander, Caesar, Ghengis Kahn, Attila, Mohammad, Charlemagne, Napoleon, Hitler, Stalin, Mao et al all enacted extreme violence on the world and emptied it significantly. The result was ALWAYS, ultimately, a prolonged period of unequalled Stability and Progress and consolidation.

You think this was horrible and so do I. I see the cause of it as our tropical reproduction rate and the FACT that this level of destruction would have occured at any rate, along with any accumulated knowledge and any chance for survival as we now have.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 25, 2011
I THINK this is how the People who might be in charge of the world THINK. And I regret having to dump it on you like Marlon Brando did that boat pilots severed head in Martin Sheens lap. Metaphorically speaking.

You already think that leaders are ruthless cunning psychopaths. I am saying They may be having to do the Things they do in order to save the human race from itself.

They did not determine our reproductive rate but They could certainly see what it would ultimately do to the world, unless something was done. Something Drastic. World conquest is hell for millenia, but I suppose it beats complete extinction.

The hebrews were given a mission; the world would be theirs if they were willing to enact a thorough extirpation upon it, not merely killing the infidel but also his women and children, his animals, razing his cities and burning his orchards. We can read these words and not expect that Someone had actually meant for them to be carried out?

OF COURSE THEY DID.
ubavontuba
1.8 / 5 (5) Jan 25, 2011
What a sad little fantasy you live in otto. But it is interesting how it frees you from taking any personal responsibility for anything.

I wonder otto, do you vote? It seems unlikely, given your penchant for abdicating personal responsibility. So if you do vote, I would wonder, why?

Have you studied the personal history of great world leaders? Many, particularly from democracies had quite humble beginnings.

So just where is this ruling class of which you speak? Who are they? How do they communicate? Where and when do they meet?
Ethelred
not rated yet Jan 26, 2011
You can do better than that.
I find that over polishing turns funny to unfunny.
as they did on your clay tablets
I made those up. I don't actually have any. Sorry to get your hopes up. However RECORDING over years is different than planning over years. Look at the crap that gets built on the multidecade plans. Phyramids and cathedrals. Impressive but thats it. And those are mere engineering projects. Nothing like planning an economy
arks
How did not to notice that Kevin has a sock puppet named Otto
The populace grows faster than the food supply
Those were farming societies. The population and the food supply were equivalent as far they could see
THAT is why they blame the king
I think you will find that the Kings were getting blamed for the weather as climate change is what wiped out many civilizations
What is the Solution? Think man, think
I know. Tell Otto that he has conspiracy on the brain. Already did and he converted to Kevinism.

Ark Ark

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
I find that over polishing turns funny to unfunny.
I was lamenting your lack of effort in refutation. You compare otto to godders but you spend far more effort to refute them than me. Is it because ottos man-based theories are less obviously nonsense? That the possibility of their actually being true makes one a little uncomfortable?

I think my philosophy is impeccable. Overpop created tribal warfare and tribal warfare created the modern human being. The most successful tribes were the ones who could anticipate an enemys actions (while concealing ones own) and plan to attack when he was vulnerable. Cooperation, foresight, planning, and deception- hallmarks of success.

Who are they? Humans love the personality cult- gossip in the village, so-and-so did what? We care more about who does things than why they do them. I say the why is much more revealing.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
Evidence would necessarily need to be forensic
You make extraordinary (and implausible) claims, yet you don't have any extraordinary evidence to back them up.
But there are dozens of them, all conforming to the above philosophy...
That's called selection bias.
insanity tends to be unreliable and inconsistant.
Sociopaths are usually quite sane. They just have a malfunctioning emotional apparatus (severely deficient in empathy, and overly proficient in narcissism.)
And how do know this is true?
Simple: nice guys finish last.
They are good because they Enjoy what they do.
So do serial murderers. Many people who are actually decent in nature, reflexively shy away from leadership because the politics and machinations entailed disgust them.
The lie that power corrupts is a form of deception.
Lies are a form of deception? Well, I'd have never... But what makes you label an empirical finding a lie? History aside, remember the Stanford prison experiment?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
if this were true, the world would be a ruin, but its not.
But the world IS quite a ruin. 200,000 years of modern humans, and we've only just gotten this far?
We have seen incredible strides in technology that will soon enable us to leave the planet and establish permanent footholds elsewhere.
I suspect you'd focus on the technology of war, but it's the technologies of civil engineering, agriculture, industry -- peacetime, peaceful pursuits -- that have enabled today's high population density. And I believe that without the high population density, there would be no modern technology. In a lot of ways, necessity is the mother of invention, and necessity is most acute when resources are stretched to the limit.
Alexander, Caesar, Ghengis Kahn, Attila, Mohammad, Charlemagne, Napoleon, Hitler, Stalin, Mao
A fine list of eminent sociopaths.
The hebrews were given a mission
Who cares? They were 0.1% of the world's population. Mongols were far better at it, anyway.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
Sociopaths are usually quite sane. They just have a malfunctioning emotional apparatus (severely deficient in empathy, and overly proficient in narcissism.)
-And again, where do we learn this from? From direct experience, intensive study, or so many hours watching the news and the History channel?
So do serial murderers. Many people who are actually decent in nature, reflexively shy away from leadership because the politics and machinations entailed disgust them.
I would say that, by your own def of what constitutes a leader, you would be a leader. Why would you possibly think leaders would necessarily be bad? First off, they rarely get where they are by themselves. They make alliances, develop reputations, gain trust, demonstrate performance. I wouldn't say steve jobs is particularly evil.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
They were 0.1% of the world's population.
Bible stories are METAPHORS. The people who wrote the original exodus stories knew full well those people didn't exist, and certainly didn't conquer an egypt-controlled palestine. Did you know that the British aristocracy believes that they are the true heirs of the throne of king David?

The OT describes exactly how to wage a prolonged war of conquest. People think war was only a backdrop to describe faith. I say that faith was an essential part of maintaining cohesion and commitment in a conquering force, and of developing the resolve to slaughter the infidel. God says it is ok and necessary, and he should know because he is the source of all that is good and right, yes?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
where do we learn this from?
Sociopathy is a well-established medical diagnosis (notice I said medical, rather than psychoanalytical: these days, sociopathic traits are easily quantifiable, and even some neural correlates have been established.) The symptomology of sociopathy is quite uncontroversial.
Why would you possibly think leaders would necessarily be bad?
Selection of the fittest. Also read some Nietzsche and Machiavelli.
they rarely get where they are by themselves
True.
They make alliances, develop reputations, gain trust, demonstrate performance
True, to an extent. Sociopaths are not deficient in their ability to manipulate others. Indeed, many sociopaths are especially adept at manipulation: they derive a degree of pleasure from it. It ties in nicely with lack of empathy, narcissism, and megalomania.
I wouldn't say steve jobs is particularly evil.
An exception doesn't invalidate a rule.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
God says it is ok and necessary, and he should know because he is the source of all that is good and right, yes?
Your focus and perspective are too narrow. Not all the world (and ESPECIALLY not the ancient world) runs on some variation of Yahweh.

Those Mongols you mentioned previously, didn't know the first thing about any "God". They were pagans. Yet they waged massive, sustained wars; they pillaged and raped; they conquered and culled. They did all of that, quite successfully, without any need for any Bibles. Ditto for the Vikings. Ditto for the Qin dynasty in China. Ditto for the Japanese Daimyos. Etc., and so forth.

You give religion far too much credit. Humans are quite capable of initiating and sustaining large-scale warfare regardless of religion, and indeed even in absence of any.

The fundamental human proclivity toward kneeling before authority is far more of a factor, than any tale of fancy concocted or promulgated by any particular authority.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 26, 2011
Those Mongols you mentioned previously, didn't know the first thing about any "God".
I wish you guys would do a little research before you post. Mongols were indeed religious; shamanism:
"There is a total of 99 tngri or heavenly creatures of which Koke Mongke Tngri (Eternal Blue Heaven) is the chief"

-They worshipped the clear blue sky.
they pillaged and raped; they conquered and culled.
They also united and showed great mercy to cultures which accepted them. They spent much time collecting knowledge and developing culture. You should read about them rather than reciting old propaganda.
Selection of the fittest. Also read some Nietzsche and Machiavelli.
I have and I've quoted them extensively here.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 26, 2011
Why would you possibly think leaders would necessarily be bad?
To expand a bit more:

The best leaders are usually those who didn't seek the position of leadership to begin with, but were thrust into it by the force of circumstance. Unfortunately, they are a rarity; a product of chance. People who become leaders in such a fashion, tend to be a far better selection of human beings, than the vast majority of leaders who achieve their position through their own sustained and determined ambition.

It takes a particular kind of person to lust for power, and to visualize oneself as worthy of that power, and as being more competent to wield it than any other. To begin with, the pool of applicants for leadership-by-choice is already winnowed down to the ambitious, the narcissistic, and the sociopathic. Then, a sort of alchemical refinement takes place as these people struggle to ascend within the organization -- where the most noxious are the ones who rise the fastest and highest.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 26, 2011
I wish you guys would do a little research before you post.
Didn't I say they were pagans? They just weren't monotheists, and what religion(s) they did have, had very little in common with that of the Hebrews.
They also united and showed great mercy to cultures which accepted them.
So do most conquerors. They install their own regional governors and garrisons, to keep order and collect the tax. In the end, it's all about wealth and power. Of course, the Mongols also had no problem burning down and wholesale-butchering entire city-states, if/when they rebelled or offered resistance against the invaders. It's all quite typical, historically, quite logical, and quite par for the course.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
Sociopathy is a well-established medical diagnosis (notice I said medical, rather than psychoanalytical: these days, sociopathic traits are easily quantifiable
-Indeed, and I'm trying not to be rude, but this is done by professionals? What we most often hear are the pop propagandist versions.
Indeed, many sociopaths are especially adept at manipulation: they derive a degree of pleasure from it.
Where do you get this stuff from? Oprah? Dr Phil? People like Jobs are the rule. Leaders of that caliber do not get there alone. They construct alliances, build trust, develop reputations. Like I say, cooperation makes success, the ability to assemble teams.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 26, 2011
A bit more about sociopaths...

The emotional/empathic deficit manifests very early in life. It's already detectable in toddlers.

These unfortunate children feel the natural need to fit in and be accepted by their family and acquaintances, but find that their natural behavior only alienates those they want to attract.

They quickly learn to hide their less attractive impulses (e.g. toward cruelty and selfishness), to simulate the expected responses, and to emulate the "normal" behaviors they observe around them. Through necessity, they learn to be highly and deliberately observant of others (much more than is normal.) They learn to deceive and play-act very early in life, and they develop a two-faced personality: their public mask, vs. their true private self. To some extent this is true of all humans, but it is vastly amplified in sociopaths.

This sort of a natural background gives sociopaths a leg-up when it comes to any situation that rewards ability to manipulate others.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
To begin with, the pool of applicants for leadership-by-choice is already winnowed down to the ambitious, the narcissistic, and the sociopathic. Then, a sort of alchemical refinement takes place as these people struggle to ascend within the organization -- where the most noxious are the ones who rise the fastest and highest.
Dude, you watch way too much tv. What a load. Hey, lots of action over in egypt at the moment- the evil denizen mubarak is ripe for a fall. Call it a working vacation- see the pyramids and off the pigs.
Didn't I say they were pagans? They just weren't monotheists
My point was, their faith sustained them. Faith is an integral factor in maintaining order. Khan quickly created an empire which just as quickly disintegrated into warring factions, like Israel. Like Alexander, like Charlemagne, like Qin, etc. It's a Formula and well described in the bible.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
People like Jobs are the rule.
No, they are the exception. Which is what makes Apple so exceptional as a company. The instant Steve Jobs leaves (or retires due to health problems), Apple would start its descent back into mediocrity and obscurity. But that wouldn't be due to any lack of leadership: there will always be leaders to take Jobs' place. They just wouldn't be Jobs.
Where do you get this stuff from?
Well, actually back in the college days I did a second-major in Cognitive Science (for kicks and fun.) Anyway, here's a couple of starting-off pages for your research:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antisocial_personality_disorder

bjp.rcpsych.org/cgi/content/full/182/1/5
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
They quickly learn to hide their less attractive impulses (e.g. toward cruelty and selfishness), to simulate the expected responses, and to emulate the "normal"
Stop stop you're creepin me out. Think of how we evolved. The tribes with the greatest internal cohesion were the most successful. This cohesion depended on mutual trust and understanding.

This enabled people to depend on each other, which in turn enabled greater courage and more intricate performance on the battlefield. In short, people needed to have faith in their leaders, that they were acting in the tribes best interests and not their own. Tribes with these qualities were able to consistently annihilate their enemies and impregnate their women.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (4) Jan 26, 2011
Stop stop you're creepin me out.
I didn't realize it was possible to creep out a conspiracy theorist...
Think of how we evolved.
Evolution is messy, and we aren't done evolving.

And in any case, there is always game theory at play. If we were all perfectly well-adjusted, then a single sociopath mutant born into our midst would have a tremendous advantage: we would all implicitly trust him/her, because we'd all assume he/she were just like us. He/she would be able to play us all against each other with trivial ease.

Even in such a gregarious species as ours, there will always be some small yet persistent (over evolutionary time) percentage of sociopaths. Quite simply, as long as they remain within a certain optimal range of ratio to the rest of the population, they enjoy a selective advantage that balances out their other disadvantages.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 26, 2011
Well, actually back in the college days I did a second-major in Cognitive Science
Yeah all well and good but how do you apply that to an entire class of individuals? Is that the kind of misarchy they taught you at the Peoples university of Leningrad?

I say that if we consistently see evil in our leaders and CEOs, then it is because we are told we should expect this. I don't believe it is either normal or inevitable. I believe there can be extremely powerful and resourceful People who are nevertheless committed to nothing less than the survival of the human race. What, for instance, would a prince Charles need with more wealth? He already has 30 castles to live in.

I think there can be People who are born with unlimited wealth and power who can ascribe to accomplishing Good in the world, as Inheritors of an age-old Tradition.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (46) Jan 26, 2011
I didn't realize it was possible to creep out a conspiracy theorist...
Nah you're particular paranoia is the stuff of conspiracies.
And in any case, there is always game theory at play. If we were all perfectly well-adjusted, then a single sociopath mutant
-would have quickly been drummed out of the tribe, or would've gotten them all killed. Game theory does not describe the nature of tribal warfare and the development of the human intellect as a direct result. It doesn't apply. Trust, courage, honor, respect, these are what made us human.

You know, perhaps you instinctively distrust leaders because you see them as outside your tribe? You can't trust them because they're not YOUR leaders eh?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
how do you apply that to an entire class of individuals
I'm not speaking with mathematical precision; I'm using heuristics. We've already discussed that rules may have exceptions, but those exceptions don't disprove the rules.

All I'm saying is that a certain kind of environment and social dynamic, will tend to favor a certain kind of personality: just like for instance warm sea surface tends to foment storm systems, even if it doesn't necessarily do that 100% of the time.

When a system is biased to produce a certain kind of outcomes, then those outcomes will be more likely.
What, for instance, would a prince Charles need with more wealth?
He was born into it. I've already discussed the difference between leaders-by-choice vs. leaders-by-chance. Charles falls into the latter category.
can ascribe to accomplishing Good in the world
Yes, but they always have been, and always will be in the minority when you consider the general population of all leaders, as a whole.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 26, 2011
rules may have exceptions, but those exceptions don't disprove the rules.
-But the prevailing rules of this society are that we appoint leaders we can trust, and rid ourselves of those we cant. This would make your rules the exception and not the norm
All I'm saying is that a certain kind of environment and social dynamic, will tend to favor a certain kind of personality
Which, while it may be a popular opinion among certain social circles, is after all certainly not the prevailing one, is it?
Charles falls into the latter category.
And yet when the monarchies were in power people like you tended to believe they were just as corrupt and evil, yes? So muchso that they were finally brought down, with immense bloodshed.
PinkElephant
2.3 / 5 (3) Jan 26, 2011
would have quickly been drummed out of the tribe, or would've gotten them all killed
As soon as "the tribe" grew larger than a few family units, this would no longer apply. When you start talking about nations numbering in tens of thousands, there is suddenly plenty of room for sociopaths to maneuver and prey on the gullible.
tribal warfare and the development if the human intellect as a direct result
Many other social animals (e.g. wolves) engage in tribal warfare; somehow they've failed to evolve the human intellect.
Trust, courage, honor, respect, these are what made us human.
Do you realize that the earliest-known human cultures tended to be matriarchal rather than patriarchal? Why are you so certain that male aggression advanced human evolution any more than female bonding and socialization? (Did you obtain your degree in Scientific Chauvinism, back in the 19th century -- or is there still some backwater teaching it these days?)
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 26, 2011
we appoint leaders we can trust, and rid ourselves of those we cant
There's theory, and then there's practice. And then, there's the ugly reality.
people like you tended to believe they were just as corrupt and evil, yes
They believed it themselves. Otherwise, they wouldn't have royal tasters to make sure their breakfast Eggs Benedict weren't laced with poison. They wouldn't have elaborate spying networks in their own courts.

Back then, kings may have been born into power, but they had to fight for it. There were always contenders eager to seize it from them. It wasn't uncommon for rulers to refer to their barons/nobility and courts (not to mention their own relatives) as pits of vipers looking for a chance to strike.

Charles has the luxury of not having to worry about stuff like that. But you fail your history if you think the modern state of affairs in Britain is even remotely representative of past norms.
Ethelred
5 / 5 (3) Jan 27, 2011
I was lamenting your lack of effort in refutation.
I was pointing out that there isn't anything worth refuting. Typical conspiracy crap. Nothing testable. No evidence. Coincidence sited as planned actions and refusal to see the counterarguments.
You compare otto to godders
You brought up the Ark not me.
Is it because ottos man-based theories are less obviously nonsense?
See above. You just WRITE more crap than they do. Pretty difficult achievement. VERY dubious achievement.
I think my philosophy is impeccable
Its been pecked. Many times. Like Creationists you simply ignore it and go on.
I say the why is much more revealing.
Especially when you make up the why. It reveals a standard Crank behavior.

Ethelred
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
Its been pecked. Many times. Like Creationists you simply ignore it and go on.
No, it hasn't. You haven't mentioned the philosophy I laid out above, which by itself can explain why we should have expected leaders to begin colluding to manage their flock millennia ago. You don't want to, fine.

You keep harping evidence and I present alternate explanations for events which are consistent and make much more sense. Instead of complementing otto on his amazing insight you throw stones and say 'balderdash'. Lots of namecalling and dismissing. That's easy enough to do.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (43) Jan 27, 2011
Do you realize that the earliest-known human cultures tended to be matriarchal rather than patriarchal?
Another myth although immaterial. No ancient culture has been documented with female leadership. Lineage yes. Iroquois were led by men APPOINTED by the matriarchs of each family.
Do you realize that the earliest-known human cultures tended to be matriarchal rather than patriarchal? Why are you so certain that male aggression advanced human evolution
Who said that the qualities of trust, respect, loyalty, courage, or cooperation were exclusively male?
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
Do you realize that the earliest-known human cultures tended to be matriarchal rather than patriarchal? Why are you so certain that male aggression advanced human evolution any more than female bonding and socialization? (Did you obtain your degree in Scientific Chauvinism, back in the 19th century -- or is there still some backwater teaching it these days?)


It's a popular myth but completely false. Where did you obtain your degree in Scientific political correctness, a hippie commune in the 60s?

Besides how is acknowledging that FACT chauvinistic? I'd think it would be more politically correct to berate men since the beginning of time rather than from the 19th century on. Feminists would not be pleased with you, get your balls back in the purse...
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
It's a popular myth but completely false.
Actually it depends on the region of the world. The vast majority of smaller civilizations were matriarchial or shared leadership between the sexes. Once the need for large scale militaries became more common, male leadership tended to dominate.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
According to the latest stuff I've seen there has never been evidence of a matriarchal society anywhere.

Adovasio, J. M., Olga Soffer, & Jake Page, The Invisible Sex: Uncovering the True Roles of Women in Prehistory (Smithsonian Books & Collins (HarperCollinsPublishers), 1st Smithsonian Books ed. 2007 (ISBN 978-0-06-117091-1)), pp. 251–255, esp. p. 255.
Modernmystic
1 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
According to the latest stuff I've seen there has never been evidence of a TRUE matriarchal society anywhere.

Adovasio, J. M., Olga Soffer, & Jake Page, The Invisible Sex: Uncovering the True Roles of Women in Prehistory (Smithsonian Books & Collins (HarperCollinsPublishers), 1st Smithsonian Books ed. 2007 (ISBN 978-0-06-117091-1)), pp. 251-255, esp. p. 255.

Apologies for the double post, screwy with the editing...
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
You brought up the Ark not me.
The ark is a metaphor. As in an enochian priesthood preserving humanities treasure of irreplaceable Knowledge until such time as the floodwaters of human overgrowth and conflict have subsided. Enoch/Thoth, the first philosopher.

@Ethelred
They quickly learn to hide their less attractive impulses (e.g. toward cruelty and selfishness), to simulate the expected responses, and to emulate the "normal" behaviors they observe around them...They learn to deceive and play-act very early in life, and they develop a two-faced personality: their public mask, vs. their true private self. To some extent this is true of all humans, but it is vastly amplified in sociopaths.
-Doesn't this resemble classic conspiracy more? 'Evil sicko leaders are plotting against us because 10 houses and 2 yachts is just not enough'? What nonsense. And yet we all want to fall for it.
Cont
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.2 / 5 (45) Jan 27, 2011
I say there are far more important things that can motivate the most talented and resourceful. Giving their decendents a secure future for one, perhaps the most important one. For isn't this the primary function of tribes and the main reason for aggressive defense? To prepare for danger, eliminate enemies before they have the chance to attack you on their terms?

A tribe of Leaders with a sufficient worldview would have to conclude that the entire world would have to be subdued to ensure this. And I believe this explains what we see.
Actually it depends on the region of the world. The vast majority of smaller civilizations were matriarchal
MM is right SH. One of the reasons anthropology is no longer considered a science. PEs point does illuminate the extent of misinformation we are subject to in the name of politics, including the tripe that all leaders are evil. Many of them are only acting that way.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (43) Jan 27, 2011
The idea that women would somehow be less ruthless in protecting their families than men, and so would make more rational leaders. What nonsense. A female bear with cubs is the most dangerous animal in the woods. Women instinctively incite competition among males as a way of discerning quality, and we've all experienced this I bet, men and women both.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
PEs point does illuminate the extent of misinformation
I merely pointed out your outdated 19th-century style tilt regarding advancement through conflict. It stinks of the rotten old baloney about how the males of the species drive evolution because they are adventurers and explorers, whereas the females retard progress because all they're good for is reproduction and domestication.

In point of fact, I take neither side: as usual, the extremes are nothing but distortions at best, and fabrications at worst.

As for the earliest societies being most likely matriarchal, I do go by the prevalence of goddess worship as opposed to the modern prevalence of (male) god worship. This isn't to say that male gods didn't exist in prehistory, but it's obvious that the proportions of male-to-female deities have rather drastically changed in the last few millennia. That, to me, is indicative of patriarchal ascendancy.

Look at lions: the females keep the pride together, while the males roam.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
there are far more important things that can motivate the most talented and resourceful.
You've obviously never found yourself a cog in some large-scale corporate machine. If you had (and I have, in several distinct instances), you'd know how ugly the politics get even in a low-level managerial environment. The higher up the ladder you go, the more the politics is refined into a sort of sick art form, and the more are positions of power taken not by the most talented, not by the most well-meaning, but by the most manipulative, vindictive, self-centered, and well-connected.

People like you sing praises for the captains of industry while bashing government bureaucracies. Yet, you always fail to understand that all bureaucracies are alike: no matter whether they're governmental or private. And all bureaucracies tend to foist the worst kinds of people to the top.

My point? You're engaging in armchair philosophy, oblivious of reality surrounding you. You need to get out more.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 27, 2011
Who said that the qualities of trust, respect, loyalty, courage, or cooperation were exclusively male?
Not I. But you did say this:
tribal warfare and the development if(sic) the human intellect as a direct result
Development of human intellect as a direct result of tribal warfare? Bull.

But who tends to engage in tribal warfare among humans in the vast overwhelming majority of cases: males or females? Hmm, let me think... yeah, males sounds about right.

They're the ones running the street gangs even today -- the modern equivalent of "tribal warfare" in the developed world. (And there's clearly an overabundance of some truly highly-evolved minds to be found there, in that milieu. /sarcasm)

IN THAT CONTEXT, you talk of evolving "trust, respect, loyalty, courage, or cooperation". All singularly driven by symptoms of testosterone poisoning, apparently. Bull.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jan 27, 2011
MM is right SH. One of the reasons anthropology is no longer considered a science. PEs point does illuminate the extent of misinformation we are subject to in the name of politics, including the tripe that all leaders are evil. Many of them are only acting that way.
Except when he's wrong.

For example: Bribri, Filipinos, Garo, Hopi, Iban (to an extent), Iroquois, Jaintia, Karen, Khasi, Marshallese, Mosuo, Tlingit, Vanatinai, Minangkabau, E De, Mosuo, Tuareg, and Basques.
The Sardinians are arguably matriarchial, however, recent evidence has suggested they were patriarchial and matrilocal.

As I said above, larger civilizations were very much patriarchial.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
Except when he's wrong.

For example: Bribri, Filipinos, Garo, Hopi, Iban (to an extent), Iroquois, Jaintia, Karen, Khasi, Marshallese, Mosuo, Tlingit, Vanatinai, Minangkabau, E De, Mosuo, Tuareg, and Basques.
The Sardinians are arguably matriarchial, however, recent evidence has suggested they were patriarchial and matrilocal.

As I said above, larger civilizations were very much patriarchial.
Source bitte. In the meantime I give you your favorite ref, wiki:

"A matriarchy is a society in which females, and especially mothers, have the central roles of political leadership and moral authority. It also sometimes called a gynocratic or a gynocentric society.

There are no known societies that are unambiguously matriarchal, although there are a number of attested matrilinear, matrilocal, and avunculocal societies, especially among indigenous peoples of Asia and Africa, such as those of the Minangkabau, E De (Rhade), Mosuo, Berbers or Tuareg, and Basque."
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
Oh hey look the lists are about the same, except yours doesnt include 'There are no known societies that are unambiguously matriarchal', or how those on the list are all 'matrilinear, matrilocal, and avunculocal' instead of matriarchal. How about that.

The Iroquois, for one, were 'The clans were matrilineal, that is, clan ties were traced through the mother's line. If a couple separated, the woman kept the children.

The chief of a clan could be removed at any time by a council of the mothers of that clan, and the chief's sister was responsible for nominating his successor.' -The chief was invariably a man.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
I merely pointed out your outdated 19th-century style tilt regarding advancement through conflict.
No it wasnt
It stinks of the rotten old baloney
No it doesnt.
how the males of the species drive evolution because they are adventurers and explorers, whereas the females retard progress because all they're good for is reproduction and domestication.
Man you read ALL that into what I said. Honestly I often wonder if these Aristocrats might not be predominently women. For instance the high priestess of athena was the most important political position in athens.
http
://www.suite101.com/content/the-women-of-athena-s-cult-a7530

-As with the Iroquois, women choose their leaders. And they would be more effective throughout the ages doing this in secret. Biologically, women have far more invested in their offspring than men. A womans biological imperative is to choose the best possible mate for each individual pregnancy. This doesnt always lead to harmony in the tribe tho-
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (43) Jan 27, 2011
Development of human intellect as a direct result of tribal warfare? Bull.
Sad but true. One of my favorite sources on the matter:
http
://rechten.eldoc.ub.rug.nl/FILES/root/Algemeen/overigepublicaties/2005enouder/CAMBRID2/CAMBRID2.pdf

-The tribes who strategized and fought best were the ones who killed the opposing males and impregnated all the females. A sure formula for accelerated evolution of the intellect.
But who tends to engage in tribal warfare among humans in the vast overwhelming majority of cases: males or females? Hmm, let me think... yeah, males sounds about right.
So you think that males evolve separate from females or something? Your antiquated 60s blank slate mentality must yield to the rational approach of THIS century which accepts that males and females had different roles to play within the species and tribe. Males fought. Females made sure they fought well. Look at the iroquois... the women were very powerful indeed.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 27, 2011
How about that.
As missing the forest for the trees goes? Not to take away from your considerable effort, but I've still seen more impressive displays.
The chief was invariably a man.
And what power/responsibilities did the chief have, relative to the council of mothers? Who holds more power in U.S.: the Congress, or the President?

Let's not forget the demographics of prehistoric clans. Life expectancy was pathetic, all the more so for men: hunting is a hazardous sport, and so is fighting. The wise contingent with experience and perspective, in any small tribe would have always been predominantly female -- i.e. all those who survived their child-bearing years (as well as those who were infertile), were quite likely to live long into old age. Even today, with our sanitized and domesticated lifestyles, human females still outlive males by half a decade.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 27, 2011
And what power/responsibilities did the chief have, relative to the council of mothers?
I dont know, read a book. Your tangent is not germaine.
The wise contingent with experience and perspective, in any small tribe would have always been predominantly female
It would have been the elders of either sex I would assume. Older women would indeed know more about important social and reproductive affairs within the tribe, while older men would know more about hunting/fighting, strategy, weapons making and use. Both are equally important, obviously. Nobody said they werent. Isnt gloria steinem dead yet?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jan 27, 2011
The tribes who strategized and fought best were the ones who killed the opposing males and impregnated all the females. A sure formula for accelerated evolution of the intellect.
Bull. Until population densities escalated due to adoption of agriculture and domestication of lifestock, any two tribes would've been lucky to bump into each other about once in a lifetime.

By the time you get into sustained inter-tribal warfare, it's long since all the features of the modern human have emerged. Don't forget that Homo Sapiens Sapiens has existed for at least 200,000 years already (perhaps closer to 400,000 years), whereas your visibility into prehistory is limited largely to the last ~50,000 years of it, and strongly biased toward the last ~5,000 years at that.

And besides, fighting best isn't equivalent to having a towering intellect. Otherwise, Boxing would be dominated by members of Mensa (and vice versa.) In fact, we observe the exact opposite.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 28, 2011
Bull. Until population densities escalated due to adoption of agriculture and domestication of lifestock, any two tribes would've been lucky to bump into each other about once in a lifetime.
So you obviously did not visit the link, and value your opinion over fact. Chimps and gorillas wage tribal conflict in the same manner, and for the same reasons, as humans have done ever since the species diverged. This is well-known and accepted.

Your credibility has sunk precipitously. You always tend to make stuff up?

Strategy always tends to beat brute force. The ambush is the favored method of attack. A tribe whose members could outthink the enemy would consistently prevail. Obviously.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 28, 2011
Seriously. I am a little shocked and dismayed at how little you know about a subject you still feel comfortable offering opinions on. Including people who reward your behavior with 5/5s who seem to know as little as you do about it.

Tribal warfare shaped the human brain.
http
://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/22/science/22chimp.html
Modernmystic
3 / 5 (2) Jan 28, 2011
I merely pointed out your outdated 19th-century style tilt regarding advancement through conflict. It stinks of the rotten old baloney about how the males of the species drive evolution because they are adventurers and explorers, whereas the females retard progress because all they're good for is reproduction and domestication.


That's not what you said, nor what it sounded like you meant. As far as that goes I agree. In fact I think social cooperation has done as much for human technical development as conflict.

I still stand by my statement that the latest work in the field shows there have never been any true matriarchal societies (with the possible exception of the Amazon tribes). This does not mean in any way that women did not contribute to human social/technological development in ancient societies.

That said most modern technical advancement has been driven by tribal warfare IMO.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 28, 2011
That's not what you said, nor what it sounded like you meant. As far as that goes I agree. In fact I think social cooperation has done as much for human technical development as conflict.
Correct. Internal cohesion TOGETHER with external animosity. You didnt read my rechten link either did you MM?
http
://rechten.eldoc.ub.rug.nl/FILES/root/Algemeen/overigepublicaties/2005enouder/CAMBRID2/CAMBRID2.pdf
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 28, 2011
@otto,
Chimps and gorillas wage tribal conflict in the same manner, and for the same reasons, as humans have done
Which would explain, of course, why chimps and gorillas have evolved an intellect to rival that of humans. Alles klar.

BTW, among the great apes the conflicts are usually territorial in nature. It's not about killing and raping the other tribe. Territorial conflicts are possible only when there is already a sufficient population density achieved.

I'm not saying protohumans weren't aggressive. But it's foolish to credit aggression with human evolution. It's correlation, not causation.

@MM,
there have never been any true matriarchal societies
The correct statement is there is no evidence of such in recorded history. Which is not nearly as strong of a statement as the one you make.

Regardless, the emergence of prominent patriarchal order is quite clearly a modern development, and not a natural state in small, widely-scattered tribes.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 28, 2011
BTW, among the great apes the conflicts are usually territorial in nature. It's not about killing and raping the other tribe. Territorial conflicts are possible only when there is already a sufficient population density achieved.
You DO understand the difference between making something up to suit your own preconceived notions, and actually understanding something, dont you? No I didnt think so.

Apes DO invade other camps and carry off females, although the females tend to favor victors of either side. And pre-modern humans were intensely territorial.
I'm not saying protohumans weren't aggressive.
Honestly, you would have no idea either way because you know nothing of the subject, do you? Like QC in the other thread you think you can just make this stuff up and still be right, or better than right, yes? Like this:
Regardless, the emergence of prominent patriarchal order is quite clearly a modern development...
Pure, unabashed ignorance.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 28, 2011
You DO understand the difference between making something up to suit your own preconceived notions, and actually understanding something, dont you?
Do you? Like, for instance, pretending you actually understand what drove the evolution of human intellect, when experts on the matter have yet to reach even an inkling of consensus?
Apes DO invade other camps and carry off females
Your own link stated they tend to let females go, and only eat their infants. No mention of carrying anyone off.
And pre-modern humans were intensely territorial.
But was it the war-making that drove progress, or was it in fact peace-making? Which is the better indication, and more likely outcome, of advanced intelligence? I'd say the territorial instincts and male aggression are throwbacks to protohuman (un-intelligent) behavior, rather than harbingers of a blossoming intellect.
Pure, unabashed ignorance.
You know me better than that. Question is, can you recognize your own bias?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
And you still haven't read the rechten article which would answer all your questions and prove you all wrong and otto all right and vindicated.
You know me better than that. Question is, can you recognize your own bias?
Tribes were rarely isolated due to the nature of our repro rate coupled with our ability to counter agents of natural attrition. Tribes existed in competition with each other over resources. You seem to be the kind of person who would willfully ignore the obvious and opt to believe some 60s sociopolitical hype instead of using their common sense. Males and females are different. Primate females needed males for a number of reasons including protection, and would not be off living by themselves. Jane goodall would tell you this.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
Human babies are naturally born prematurely due to the unnatural size of their heads. Unlike most other animals, human babies need constant care. This further relegated women to birthing and rearing, and may even explain why post-menopausal females have been selected for; mothers needed assistance. Their hips widened to allow the passage of the baby's head. They became more sedentary.

Childbirth became an excruciating and perilous effort. Biblical authors could note how other animals dropped foals and cubs without blinking, but god seemed to be punishing women for something. This is an unnatural condition driven by unnatural evolution. Mans tools made him the masters of his environment and the only enemy left became the tribe next door. Our brains grew because conflict became a truly intellectual endeavor. Survival of the more clever.

And no I won't be politically correct and use him/her or somesuch. Adults today know one means the other. Get over it.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
our ability to counter agents of natural attrition
What magical ability are you referring to? Please recall that paleolithic tribes didn't have personal physicians and 911 emergency service. Female death rate due to birth complications was very high. Child death rate due to disease, predation, and starvation was exceedingly high. Male death rate from injuries and disease, was also far higher than modern rates. Today, we face a population explosion because our technology has allowed us to violate the balance between our birth rates and our death rates. But our natural birth rates are pretty much equilibrated to our natural death rates in absence of advanced civilization.
Primate females needed males for a number of reasons including protection, and would not be off living by themselves.
Nobody lived "by themselves". They lived in familial tribes. Females were always banded together, for child-rearing and the "gathering" portion of the hunder-gathrer repertoire.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
This further relegated women to birthing and rearing
I was right, after all. You really have bought into that horseshit, hook line and sinker.

If you'd recall, women spend only 9 months in pregnancy -- if they're lucky to even have that long. 90% of their time is spent rearing, not birthing.
They became more sedentary.
Horseshit. Women can walk quite well, and they tend to simply carry their infants (or sling them around the back), while they go about their business. Older children keep up on foot.
Mans tools made him the masters of his environment and the only enemy left became the tribe next door.
Bull. You're thinking well into the neolithic period. Modern humans had already emerged in their full genetic repertoire, hundreds of thousands of years earlier.
Our brains grew because conflict became a truly intellectual endeavor.
Bull. In paleolithic conflicts survival was still far more an athletic, rather than intellectual, endeavor.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
If you bothered to read up on modern thinking about how the human brain has evolved, you would discover that warfare doesn't even appear on the radar of actual experts in the field:

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_human_intelligence#Models

Yes sure, territoriality and aggression were always features of humans and protohumans. However, they cannot be attributed with selective pressure for intelligence, because they can't explain why only humans evolved such an expansive intellect, whereas literally hundreds (if not thousands) of other species on Earth can be described as social, territorial, and aggressive at the same time -- while sporting far less impressive intellectual capacities.

You're selecting a correlate of human evolution, and postulating it as causative. That is a classic mistake. Correlation does not entail causation.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
What magical ability are you referring to? Please recall that paleolithic tribes didn't have personal physicians and 911 emergency service.
Tool/weapons use. Fire. Clothes. Agriculture. Huts and tepees and yurts. Use your freaking head. ANY high school kid can tell you this. As soon as we became able to hunt and kill the animals which were doing this to us, our pops exploded and tribal warfare ensued. Apes make war and they have none of these things to keep their numbers in check.

Like I said you are willfully ignorant.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jan 29, 2011
If you bothered to read up on modern thinking about how the human brain has evolved, you would discover that warfare doesn't even appear on the radar of actual experts in the field:
I'm sorry. You're completely incorrect on this part.

Evolutionary sociology and primate behavioral sciences all work based on evolutionary models.

You're selecting a correlate of human evolution, and postulating it as causative. That is a classic mistake. Correlation does not entail causation.
This part is spot on. Otto, you are looking at it incorrectly.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
@otto,
Fire. Clothes. Agriculture. Huts and tepees and yurts.
No fire in paleolithic cultures. Only the crudest cloth (basically, just animal skins.) No huts, tepees or yurts. All of that came LONG AFTER the modern human emerged with its complete cognitive repertoire and anatomy.

To have ANY of those technologies, you must ALREADY HAVE, A PRIORI the complete, sophisticated human intellect. You're placing the existence of the chicken in front of the existence of the egg.

@SH,
You're completely incorrect on this part.
Read the Wikipedia link I provided; try to find any discussion of warfare as germane to the evolution of human intellect. You won't find it mentioned at all.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
This part is spot on.
And you know that I did not make this up. According to the rechten article which I cited and PE refuses to read, and many other sources, this all was first postulated by darwin and is considered true by many researchers today.
This part is spot on. Otto, you are looking at it incorrectly.
And youre bending over backward to be political. You did read the article and so you know that many researchers do believe that conflict produced the human brain. So PE is no where near spot on anything. How would PE even know? She is unaware of this line of reasoning because she refuses to explore it.

@PE
Bull. You're thinking well into the neolithic period. Modern humans had already emerged in their full genetic repertoire, hundreds of thousands of years earlier.
Again, you reveal you know squat. APES use tools. Tools have been with hominids from the beginning. They quickly and permanently shifted the odds in his favor.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
In paleolithic conflicts survival was still far more an athletic, rather than intellectual, endeavor.
And you know nothing about conflict either. Encounters were rarely evenly matched, by design. the preferred method was the AMBUSH, which required the aggressors to know where they could lie in wait for their foe. Goodall described this with gorillas.

The hominids who were consistantly able to anticipate the enemys movements, and to outthink and outstrategize him, would prevail. This is the basis of all modern theory of warfare, from Sun Tzu to Ludendorff; deception and planning bring victory. The ability to learn an enemys critical weakness while keeping your own hidden. If apes can be observed doing this then proto-humans certainly would have.

And those who were best at it, at making plans and coordinating efforts among ever larger raiding parties, who possessed the ability to remember and communicate and postulate and command, are our ancestors. The losers are not.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
Tool use. From the beginning. And before fashioned stone tools were sharpened spears with fire-hardened points, and unfashioned stone projectiles.
http
://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/evan.10094/abstract
No fire in paleolithic cultures. Only the crudest cloth (basically, just animal skins.) No huts, tepees or yurts.
Correct. Technology advanced instages, as it still does. Each stage gave hominids a greater advantage and increased the potential for conflict as a result.
All of that came LONG AFTER the modern human emerged with its complete cognitive repertoire and anatomy.
No, each stage produced additional conflict which in turn increased intellectual capacity. They proceeded in concert.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
Horseshit. Women can walk quite well, and they tend to simply carry their infants (or sling them around the back), while they go about their business. Older children keep up on foot.
-From your own article:

"A larger brain requires a larger skull, and thus requires the female to have a wider birth canal for the newborn's larger skull to pass through. But if the female's birth canal grew too wide, her pelvis would be so wide that she would lose the ability to run: still a necessary skill in the dangerous world of 2 million years ago... enabled the human brain to continue to grow, but it imposed a new discipline. The need to care for helpless infants for long periods of time forced humans to become less mobile...so that females could care for infants, while males hunted food and fought with other bands that competed for food sources. As a result, humans became even more dependent on tool-making to compete with other animals and EACH OTHER..." --Meaning tribal war.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
Again, from your own article:
"According to the model, human intelligence was able to evolve to significant levels due to human domination over its habitat. As a result its primary competition shifted from nature to members or groups of its own species."

-Meaning tribal war. Additional wiki stuff:

"Evolutionary psychology
-A distinct branch of the psychological theories of war are the arguments based on evolutionary psychology. This school tends to see war as an extension of animal behaviour, such as territoriality and competition. Animals are naturally aggressive, and in humans this aggression manifests itself as warfare."

"Biologists studying primate behavior have also added to the debate. Jane Goodall in 1974 documented what she called a war between groups of chimpanzees in the Gombe National Park of Tanzania"
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
this all was first postulated by darwin and is considered true by many researchers today
Well, in this area of science, Darwin didn't really know squat. He was hypothesizing, and in this case it wasn't a very good hypothesis. Science has moved on since then. Like I said a while back, this line of thought constitutes an outdated, 19th-century take. You need to catch up by a couple of centuries, otto.
Tools have been with hominids from the beginning. They quickly and permanently shifted the odds in his favor.
Nope. Until quite recently in history (the invention of fire, projectile weapons, cloth, artificial dwellings), the tools were merely a form of primitive equalizer. Where other animals utilized claws and teeth, humans utilized stone because they didn't possess adequate claws or teeth. For hundreds of thousands of years, the level of tool technology was not even remotely sufficient to make much of a difference in terms of violating the birth/death rate balance.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
If apes can be observed doing this then proto-humans certainly would have.
And it takes a mere ape to do it. There's no need for any further intellectual refinement.
making plans and coordinating efforts among ever larger raiding parties
Apes don't raid. They patrol territories. There is nothing TO raid. Early humans didn't have possessions to steal, or stores of grain to pillage. They lived hand-to-mouth.

And if aggression drove human evolution, it would very quickly become impossible to have large raiding parties. There would be too much infighting. Which leads us to cooperation and coordination -- in other words, social skills. Without those as a PREREQUISITE, there would be no effective large-scale raids. So how did that PREREQUISITE emerge, in the first place?
-From your own article: ... --Meaning tribal war.
Yea that's from the article, all right. From the preface. Not from the models of evolution section. But then, you knew that. Didn't you?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (1) Jan 29, 2011
Again, from your own article: ... -Meaning tribal war.
Except as mentioned in that very same section, the hypothesis fails because there was no early "domination over its habitat." That, by the way, is your (and Darwin's) hypothesis, being REJECTED. Of course, the point about competition WITHIN the tribe (rather than BETWEEN tribes) still carries a certain amount of plausibility.
war as an extension of animal behaviour
All fine and good, but animal behavior spans far more than just war. Disproportionately and narrowly focusing on war, you miss the vast majority of human cognitive repertoire, and the diverse potential pressures that could have shaped it.

Like I said a while back, there is actually no current consensus on what led to the emergence of human intellect. There isn't even an inkling of consensus. And certainly, your particular notions carry absolutely NO credibility, any longer. Welcome to the 21st century.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
All fine and good, but animal behavior spans far more than just war
Yah. Writing books and making trinkets does not compare to the Mechanism, repeated ad infinitum for a few million years, of the more talented and resourceful tribes overrunning the competition and impregnating all the women. this is forced evolution x10.
your particular notions carry absolutely NO credibility, any longer. Welcome to the 21st century
You havent heard of evolutionary psychology EITHER? See, there was this brief interlude while there was a very real need to foist the feminist/tabula rasa/we're all the same on the inside crap. It worked. We're all equal now. We can get back to looking at what really makes us work and where we come from. Hint: men and women ARE NOT the same on the inside.

I'll welcome you to the 21st century when you finally get here.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (44) Jan 29, 2011
Apes don't raid. They patrol territories. There is nothing TO raid.
Again you have this insane compulsion to make stuff up and state it like you know it's real. Goodall relates a story about some young male gorillas in a tribe, who were in conflict with the alpha male. They left and took a few females with them.

This didn't set well with the alpha male. After brooding for a few weeks he took a raiding party to the new camp, fought a fierce battle, killed the males and reclaimed the females who were only too happy to be with a Winner. Females and the improved chances to propagate are worth raiding for. Ever hear of helen of Troy? Probably not.