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Author Topic: CIA vs Bush Administration
JoshCrow
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Fenring - are you suggesting the average individual is incapable of rejecting or criticizing a event they witness passively, but somehow gain this ability when actively participating? Is it your contention that things learned through societal transmission of knowledge are of less value than those experienced directly?

A case in point - I know that snakes can be dangerous because of societal knowledge, not because I experienced a poisoning.

I would suggest that in fact the ONLY way to learn about another person's experiences is through the mechanism of storytelling. There is quite literally no other way.

[ June 11, 2015, 08:00 AM: Message edited by: JoshCrow ]

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by JoshCrow:
Fenring - are you suggesting the average individual is incapable of rejecting or criticizing a event they witness passively, but somehow gain this ability when actively participating? Is it your contention that things learned through societal transmission of knowledge are of less value than those experienced directly?

It is possible to watch entertainment material passively and just take in what they say, and it is also possible to actively listen and to think while it's going on. Most programming is designed for passive viewing, and most information given to people in America (in schools, in the news, etc) is also learned passively, without critical thinking. Believe me when I say that whenever I watch a comedy or a typical film with people and mention parts that appear to others as normal TV but to me reflect repugnant tropes or metaphysical filth, I get sighs and "ughs" when they realize I'm taking their entertainment show and making the experience into some kind of assessment. They don't like when I do it and it's very clear to see that they have been trained to watch it passively and actually get annoyed when someone tries to take it apart and examine the fundaments.

As for 'societal transmission' vs. 'experienced directly', I'm not really sure what that means. Anyone can turn their brain on or off any time, and in certain scenarios have it off as the standard setting.

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
Not to mention, what you suggest would be criminal so we'd see trial after trial...
No, sadly. It's not at all illegal to infiltrate an organization, or even necessarily to provoke that organization into crime.
It is in fact illegal to provoke an organization into a crime. It's illegal to commit the crime even as an officer. And it's entrapment to be the cause of the criminal act.

I already mentioned though that infiltration and investigation is something different. It, by the way, likely requires a probable cause showing before you can authorize it, but I'd have to check that. Certainly, you can insert plain clothes officers into a crowd protesting in a public space on a lower threshold. But I'm not seeing why a sensible technique for controlling a crowd and being on hand in case of illegal activity should be rewritten into proof of black hatted illegal agent provocateur activity.

Like I said, you're using evidence of a legitimate thing as proof of an illegal thing without showing the facts.
quote:
You remember very recently, during the Oakland protests, when two undercover cops were outed when one of them pulled a gun on the crowd after that crowd, becoming suspicious after one of them exhorted them to crime too eagerly, accused them of being police?
No I didn't remember. Never followed anything about Occupy Oakland. And now that I've done some of your research for you and went to see what the heck you're talking about I see that you're not making credible arguments. You're relying on interpretation from websites run by the protesters themselves for color that you're passing on as fact.

Show the news source for your claims. What I found is the San Francisco Chronicle include 3 pictures with captions about how undercover cops drew their guns to hold off the crowd during an arrest of a protestor that they assert hit them. Those same pictures appear on protest sites with increasingly extreme stories attached to them.
quote:
Neither officer in that scenario was ever disciplined.
Why would they be? You have to assume the truthfulness of the claim that they were there to provoke, notwithstanding there were under cops being used over multiple days of the protest to control the crowd. Where's the evidence?
quote:
When asked at the time, California CHP admitted that they had been regularly stationing police in "observation" roles for at least a month prior to the discovery in Oakland.
Again, citing as "proof" a legitimate police response. I like how "observation" is in quotes to imply that its not a kosher reason for them to be there.
quote:
quote:
you're going to assert that almost "every large" protest, out of how many in the last 20 years? 4 or 5 thousand?
*laugh* I would say that there have been about thirty large American protests in the last 20 years, and probably only ten or twelve notable ones.
That's more manageable. Name the 10-12 and we'll see if there's any actual evidence of your claim (something you should have done before making it).

quote:
You really should do research on this. I'm serious. Counterintelligence is very much a thing, and I suspect that it's responsible for a great deal of evil.
quote:
Then provide the literal textbook that shows that law enforcement should infiltrate protests and start the violence themselves.
*sigh* You know I don't do links. Google "FBI COINTELPRO methods" if you want the most obvious stuff.
So to prove it, you site to a program that was active from the 50's and ended in 1971 that has been widely acknowledged as conducting illegal activities? Seriously? If anything this ought to stand for how bankrupt your argument is. It's clear proof that your claims have been tried before and FOUND TO BE ILLEGAL.

I don't think its acceptable to make an extraordinary claim and then hide behind "not doing links" when its disputed and challenged.
quote:
quote:
Maybe next time don't start out with a claim that politic disagreement and solutions you don't approve of to ACTUAL problems are rape and I won't react as harshly.
No, see, we're talking actual rape.
We're not talking actual rape. And I'd ask you again to not be offensive.
quote:
All the money "saved" by robbing K-12 teachers, unionized employees,
Who got robbed? You mean the money recovered that was allocated to union employees as part of the bribe for votes scandal that is the Democratic parties strategy for every local election, whereby they loot the public coffers to payback their allies.
quote:
and colleges has already been spent by a) long-term debt, renegotiated to make it appear that short-term deficits have been reduced;
That would not surprise me, neither party acts well when they have the keys to the financial playground. Of course, again it would be helpful to know what you're looking at that you think proves this.
quote:
and b) literal gifts to donating corporations, including sports teams, major Walker donors, and out-of-state companies (who are also Walker donors).
Which if true is just as abusive as the Democratic payola that was unwound to fund them. If true.
quote:
Walker has not saved the state money; he has cost it money,
Opinion. Would be nice to see the figures you must have reviewed (right? you didn't just rely on opinion pieces here) to reach those conclusions.
quote:
I think the term "rape" is pretty accurate.
And I think you're doubling down on being inappropriately and unnecessarily offensive.
quote:
quote:
Why? The common core in the protests that turned into riots appears to be persons motivated to use violence to call attention to the issues....
This is, indeed, one of the prejudices revealed by your choice of terms.
Lol, I think more was revealed by my research into your claims above about what your biases are, than you got out of the conclusions I reached and asserted in making those statements.
quote:
quote:
I'm talking about the rallies where the charge was "I heard someone in the crowd (unidentified) using a racial slur."
I can't find a complaint of that type being repeated by any national media. I did find complaints about speakers and posters, and blogs in which people described the tenor of the crowd as overwhelmingly white and hostile to minorities, but no scenario in which the national media said anything like "the Tea Party is racist in intent because this member of the crowd used a racial slur."
No, why would you find a stupid statement like that? No my recollection was of a rally where politicians who had to cross by asserted there was blatant racism, and the end of day break down was to an alleged anonymous utterance in the crowd. Will have to track some of it down later.

In any event, it's a false and overblown claim, that the Tea Party is racist. Any more than Occupy Wall Street was racist (since there were in fact several people with offensive and racist signs there from beginning to end (off camera of course)). These are very much what you choose to see type assertions.
quote:
Heh. Okay, so I'm intrigued: how do you get from the article, then, to an attack on those positions?
Because the articles is about being on the right side, not just making good arguments.
quote:
quote:
You're not entitled to pretend you're on the side that is anti-racist when BOTH sides are in truth anti-racist
Bull. ****. Both sides?
Both sides. In fact, the levels of actual racists are pretty even between the two parties. It's just a lie liberals tell themselves that they are not racist.

The fact is the right has more people who believe in blind justice (ie true equality of all) and the left who believes that justice needs to peak to ensure that the disadvantaged get made equal. That's difference in philosophy of implementation, not in philosophy of end goal. The converse is that to the left the right looks like its willfully blind to injustice, if not intentionally seeking it under false pretenses and to the right the left looks it's deliberately seeking to codify and endorse injustice, racism and division either because its naïve or deliberately benefits from oppressing people.
quote:
Seriati, you need to actually open your eyes, man.
My eyes are open, drop your talking points and think for a change.
quote:
At best, at best, you might argue that both sides contained people who were equally prejudiced, but that one side was defending the institutional racism pervasive in the status quo and the other side was protesting it. There is no possible construction any intellectually honest person can put on the Ferguson situation in which both sides are "anti-racist."
Lol. What are the "sides" in the Ferguson situation? Be specific, cause frankly asserting that there are "sides" that are responsive to what I said is nonsensical. There are sides on policy issues, the only "sides" in Ferguson were the protestors and the police - which oddly enough is almost certainly two left contingencies opposing each other (ie minority versus union). How you tieing my "side" into this at all?

No, you keep trying to narrow the scope to the "Ferguson situation" to keep it out of the realm of rationale argument. Cause end of day, rather than discuss arguments over the issues, causes and solutions where your logic is broken, you want to dismiss the other side's claims as "racist" and not have to refute them.

[ June 11, 2015, 12:55 PM: Message edited by: Seriati ]

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TomDavidson
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quote:
It is in fact illegal to provoke an organization into a crime. It's illegal to commit the crime even as an officer. And it's entrapment to be the cause of the criminal act.
I think it's charming that you believe this sort of thing is enforced. People have indeed gotten off due to suggestions of entrapment -- although not so much in recent years, since Homeland Security policy makes this rather difficult (and it should be noted that every single domestic arrest on charges of terrorism in the last ten years that has been cited by the FBI has been due to undercover agents offering to sponsor someone in an act of terror). But when you so blithely argue that encitement is illegal, should you first try to find a single case of an agent of the government being actually arrested or punished in any way for entrapping someone else.

quote:
So to prove it, you site to a program that was active from the 50's and ended in 1971 that has been widely acknowledged as conducting illegal activities?
Widely acknowledged? Who involved in COINTELPRO was convicted? I also find it interesting that you're so willing to take the government's word on this sort of thing. COINTELPRO was exposed, and apparently you genuinely believe the government when it says they stopped. In the case of the Oakland scenario, you are willing to believe the single police account -- which happens to contradict the very consistent eyewitness accounts -- and apparently expect them to tell the whole truth about their program. (Note, for example, that the police in question were wearing bandannas over their lower face and carrying baseball bats to "observe" the crowd.)

quote:
We're not talking actual rape.
Yes, we are. The word "rape" does not purely apply to sexual assault; it also describes the plunder of ongoing riches. But if you're oversensitive about the topic and would rather work with words like "plunder" or "pillage," I'm okay with substituting those.

quote:
In any event, it's a false and overblown claim, that the Tea Party is racist.
Hee. Overblown, perhaps. False, manifestly not.

quote:
In fact, the levels of actual racists are pretty even between the two parties.
Even granting your definition of "racism," which I don't, I should observe that you said both positions were anti-racist. I can think of absolutely no construction under which those counter-protesting might be considered primarily opposed to racism.

quote:
What are the "sides" in the Ferguson situation?
As far as I can tell, you had one side attempting to bring attention to systemic and institutionalized racism on the part of the government of Ferguson, ranging from inconsistent application of law to disproportionate use of force; and the other side, whose position was far less consistent but largely appeared to be "How dare you say that we should care about these thugs, by which we mean pot-smoking niggers who probably deserve everything that's done to them, when we white people aren't getting any positive attention at all?"

If there was another "side" in Ferguson, I missed it.

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
It is in fact illegal to provoke an organization into a crime. It's illegal to commit the crime even as an officer. And it's entrapment to be the cause of the criminal act.
I think it's charming that you believe this sort of thing is enforced. People have indeed gotten off due to suggestions of entrapment -- although not so much in recent years, since Homeland Security policy makes this rather difficult (and it should be noted that every single domestic arrest on charges of terrorism in the last ten years that has been cited by the FBI has been due to undercover agents offering to sponsor someone in an act of terror). But when you so blithely argue that encitement is illegal, should you first try to find a single case of an agent of the government being actually arrested or punished in any way for entrapping someone else.

Tom is right about this. I recently read about a case where the FBI not only sponsored the people to conduct terrorism, but in fact recruited and radicalized them as well, just to them arrest them. The people had had no interest in terrorism prior to that, and after the bust didn't even quite know why they'd gone along with it. We can file scenarios like this along with the FBI's admission that it has never, not once, prevented a terror attack in America using metadata (this last point is off-topic but I had to mention it).
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TomDavidson
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(I'd just like to add that, yes, two people (including Mark Felt, the Deep Throat of Watergate fame) were convicted -- although they were later pardoned by Ronald Reagan -- for COINTELPRO activities. Those specific activites, though, were warrantless break-ins involving property damage and seizure, not incitement.)
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The Drake
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quote:
Originally posted by Fenring:
I agree with you that internationally no one is strong enough to force the U.S. to do anything, so then we're back to local laws. I find it hard to believe that effectively acting as a monarch, e.g. deciding to conduct a personal war and then telling lies to trick the Congress into agreeing to it, isn't some kind of crime. My main question was "what kind of crime", and if we're going to dispense with the "international" element to my OP, which I agree in hindsight is a non-starter, then I'll restrict my question to "what kind of crime within the U.S."

Sorry it took a minute to get back to this, I'm in semi-permanent vacation and get to avoid always staring at glowing rectangles.

The first thing is, did they actually tell an untrue statement? If so, this could be an issue. Except lying to Congress has rarely been enforced. Ever.

quote:
"Almost no one is prosecuted for lying to Congress," lawyer P.J. Meitl asserted in a 2007 Quinnipiac Law Review article. Meitl, who wrote the article while in private practice, is now an assistant U.S. attorney in Dallas. He found only six people who had been convicted of perjury or related charges in relation to Congress, going back to the 1940s.
So even if administration officials lied to Congress, and I would stipulate that they used very careful language to hint and suggest but never went so far as to lie blatantly. That's assuming that they themselves were not convinced that Iraq had no WMD, and I'm also not certain about that.

So then, there's the question of lying to the press or the people. There are generally some mechanisms. Calls for resignation, protests, etc. But not usually legal. Luckily, all of us are able to lie as long as it is not under oath or considered libel.

Then there's the fact that a whole bunch of wars have been predicated on lies. The Gulf of Tonkin resolution that led to Vietnam War escalation is an example. Much of the account has been discredited.

quote:
The second attack on the Maddox has long been disputed, with Johnson saying to then press secretary, Bill Moyers, a year after the attacks, "For all I know, our Navy was shooting at whales out there."
Nobody got prosecuted there either.

Our real recourse to such acts in a representative democracy would be to remove everyone from office who participated, including the Congress and the Senate members who voted for the resolution without enough proof. Surely they were clever enough to see what was going on, but felt that it was still a good idea to curb or remove Saddam, plant boots in the middle east, liberate some oil, etc.

Sadly, part of polarized politics is the idea that any member of your preferred party is better than any member of your vilified party. So no matter how big a tool your dude is, you'll take em. That's how we get indicted guys getting re-elected. This emboldens politicians to favor results, either altruistic or self-serving, over process and integrity.

Until we, the electorate, hold officials accountable for their actions we will continue to have controversial politicians, at best.

Consider if we were to apply the lying standard to other political events. Did Obama intentionally mislead the Congress and the people into thinking they would be able to unconditionally keep their health plans when promoting Obamacare? If so, how could an Attorney General or Special Prosecutor be viewed as anything but a political flunky? Even if such a thing happened, would we wind up with anything but the political theatre that was the Clinton impeachment, knowing full well that there were not the votes to convict in the Senate?

The people must decide to value integrity above all else, including ideology, or we'll always have these problems.

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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by The Drake:
The first thing is, did they actually tell an untrue statement? If so, this could be an issue. Except lying to Congress has rarely been enforced. Ever.

The purpose of the link in my OP was to show evidence that they did lie, both to Congress and to the people. The difference between this link and countless others is this one wasn't partisan, it was coming from their own CIA briefer.

Personally I'm not sure I'd assert much of a difference between lying to the Congress and lying directly to the people, since the Congress are simply the representatives for the people. They're not office workers or autonomous government employees, they theoretically speak directly for the people by proxy and when they are addressed I could suggest that this is the same as the people being addressed through them.

quote:

So then, there's the question of lying to the press or the people. There are generally some mechanisms. Calls for resignation, protests, etc. But not usually legal. Luckily, all of us are able to lie as long as it is not under oath or considered libel.

Yes, this is the general point that "you can't touch them once they're out of office", which makes the operational principle not to tell the truth or to even avoid being caught, but just to avoid being caught while still in office. Given the powers of obfuscation currently available and accepted this isn't hard to do.

quote:
Then there's the fact that a whole bunch of wars have been predicated on lies. The Gulf of Tonkin resolution that led to Vietnam War escalation is an example. Much of the account has been discredited.
I would think this would be an argument for finally putting a stop to it! Or perhaps that's what you meant. But many people would likewise be prone to think that because the problem isn't a new one it's 'too late' to suddenly start cracking down on it now. This type of argument can go right up there with the other ones in the Cracked article.

quote:
Our real recourse to such acts in a representative democracy would be to remove everyone from office who participated, including the Congress and the Senate members who voted for the resolution without enough proof. Surely they were clever enough to see what was going on, but felt that it was still a good idea to curb or remove Saddam, plant boots in the middle east, liberate some oil, etc.
I think this would be both impractical, as well as similar to cutting off heads from a Hydra. I agree with the sentiment but I think that one high-level prosecution to set an example (not just a token example, but as a warning) would be more effective than punishing a bunch of middle-managers and flunkeys. Some Congressmen may actually be involved in some very bad stuff; others are probably clueless, plain old partisan, or else corrupt in a very humdrum way that isn't the root of the problem.

quote:
Until we, the electorate, hold officials accountable for their actions we will continue to have controversial politicians, at best.
Agreed; this was more or less my point in starting the thread. My initial suggestion was "international war crimes tribunal", but after some feedback I think "local trial" would be the only feasible option. But I certainly would be interested to hear other options that would help to hold officials accountable in a serious way. I just sort of think that letting known offenders off the hook entirely sets a bad precedent, because then the game simply becomes to ride out the term(s) and become untouchable afterwards.
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The Drake
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I still contend that despite the Matthews interview you linked (which I didn't watch but found a transcript, I'm presuming there's only one)

"we believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons"

He didn't say, "I was briefed by the Deputy Director that the CIA consensus is thus and so". He didn't say "we have indisputable evidence", he said "we believe". Maybe he and administration leaders did believe that. Maybe its because they wanted to believe that. Maybe they ignored intelligence professionals and chose to believe the raw data coming from Chalabi. The neocons were in love with the guy. Were the neocons duped themselves or did they dupe us?

I understand your points. I don't have nearly the certainty in what constitutes a lie that one can be prosecuted for. We have perjury, the basis for Clinton's impeachment, but that involves being under oath.

Should a lie be punishable at all? Only lies that lead to wars? What about lies that lead to financial collapse? Or other injury? Certainly there are private suits that can cover this in civil cases, under fraud and other statutes.

Usually wars start for a variety of reasons. Iraq justified its invasion of Kuwait based partly on the refusal of Kuwait to provide them debt relief. No lying there, but the invasion was equally unjustified, at least by international consensus.

Is it really the initiation of force that we should be more concerned about, rather than which truths or half-truths were used to justify it?

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Fenring
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I guess the argument goes that Saddam didn't need to lie to go to war because as a dictator he didn't require consensus from his people. In terms of internal politics there is nothing "wrong" with a dictator declaring a war, there is merely the question of whether he can get away with it.

For America to just declare some war, the matter of the internal politics is very important indeed. If the will, consent, or understanding of the people is not required to conduct a war then the scenario reverts to that of a dictatorship. If the people do have a voice and that voice is nullified through lying to them we would think there would be consequences for that. The people either have the power to oversee and guide government or they don't, and if they don't the scenario shifts ever closer to dictatorship.

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The Drake
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The consent of the people is given by proxy by our elected representatives, who did indeed sign off on the war. I don't believe any of them has ever declared that they were lied to? They backpedaled after the whole thing went wrong, but even John Kerry never claimed that Cheney and Bush lied to Congress. Your quote was about nuclear weapons, but NIE stated a 90% confidence that Saddam had chemical WMD.

Then there's whether the people themselves believe they were lied to, and how many. We can dig up polls, but somewhere around 40-60% of our population believed invasion was right as late as 2008, regardless of WMD being well understood to not exist.

I believe everything that you are advocating would happen if there was smoking-gun evidence that someone lied by a legal definition (not misled or suggested), and if the majority of people thought that the war was a bad idea.

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Fenring
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You're saying that relative consensus is proof that people don't think they were lied to. As you might imagine I'm asserting that your argument is circular. Of course if people are lied to and they believe it they won't think they were lied to, and of course if they believe lies they are not going to object to the conclusions the lies lead to. Approval rating isn't the issue. The issue lives and dies on whether "lies" were told. I would say that claiming "we believe" something specific that intelligence did not tell them was the case is a bald-faced lie.
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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
It is in fact illegal to provoke an organization into a crime. It's illegal to commit the crime even as an officer. And it's entrapment to be the cause of the criminal act.
I think it's charming that you believe this sort of thing is enforced.
And it's your extensive reading of case law that leads you to your conclusion its not? Lol.

I'm already on record multiple times expressing that the current system has been broken by the abuse of plea bargains, whereby innocent people are railroaded into accepting convictions on lesser charges to avoid the risk of excessive punishments from the ridiculous charges prosecutors allege. There's no way ANY restrictions are enforceable in such a climate.

However, I think its ridiculous to move from that to a claim that such restrictions are not taken seriously. Procedures change all the time in response to decisions on these kinds of matters, and yes entrapment forced all levels of police and police like groups to change how they operate.
quote:
But when you so blithely argue that encitement is illegal, should you first try to find a single case of an agent of the government being actually arrested or punished in any way for entrapping someone else
Why? It's not a criminal act in its own right (though there may be criminal conduct engaged in). It mostly shows up in the failure to convict stats related to the entrapment. It may show up in the firing decisions of particular officers as well.
quote:
quote:
So to prove it, you site to a program that was active from the 50's and ended in 1971 that has been widely acknowledged as conducting illegal activities?
Widely acknowledged? Who involved in COINTELPRO was convicted? I also find it interesting that you're so willing to take the government's word on this sort of thing. COINTELPRO was exposed, and apparently you genuinely believe the government when it says they stopped.
Tom, when you make a claim that this is official policy, and then to prove it cite to a program that ended 40 years ago you should expect to be challenged. If you had a persuasive argument you'd cite to something current, not just innuendo that a program that was terminated 40 years ago for its abuses is still ongoing without any evidence.

Honestly, your argument hangs on us just deciding that the program kept going without evidence, because apparently people are not trustworthy (and therefore the opposite of their claim must be true)?
quote:
In the case of the Oakland scenario, you are willing to believe the single police account -- which happens to contradict the very consistent eyewitness accounts -- and apparently expect them to tell the whole truth about their program.
The account was from the only paper that apparently covered it. Why should I hold that less credible than the ramblings of self interested protesters on whose pages clear conspiracy theories abound? Seriously, self interest in the way on that.

Like I said, the police admitted to the infiltration you need to provide evidence of the extraordinary claim of incitement. The picture most often reference is of an arrest in progress and seems to have been selected simply because the undercover officer is pointing a gun.
quote:
(Note, for example, that the police in question were wearing bandannas over their lower face and carrying baseball bats to "observe" the crowd.)
Both could be reasonable as a disguise if you were trying to be present in groups that were engaging in violence. Please provide the pictures though of the undercover police carrying baseball bats, I'm not willing to accept your assertions on this on faith given the sources you seem to be relying on.
quote:
quote:
In any event, it's a false and overblown claim, that the Tea Party is racist.
Hee. Overblown, perhaps. False, manifestly not.
False and overblown. Or can you demonstrate it somewhere in their tenants or planks? If the only measure is having racists in your party, then the Democrats are clearly a racist organization as well.
quote:
quote:
In fact, the levels of actual racists are pretty even between the two parties.
Even granting your definition of "racism," which I don't, I should observe that you said both positions were anti-racist. I can think of absolutely no construction under which those counter-protesting might be considered primarily opposed to racism.
Lol, the vast majority of people in this country, including the vast majority of each political party is opposed to racism. I've never made any claims about any "counter-protestors" so quit with the strawmanning attempts. Most people on the opposing sides of the "Ferguson" issues have never stepped foot within 50 miles of Ferguson.
quote:
quote:
What are the "sides" in the Ferguson situation?
As far as I can tell, you had one side attempting to bring attention to systemic and institutionalized racism on the part of the government of Ferguson, ranging from inconsistent application of law to disproportionate use of force; and the other side, whose position was far less consistent but largely appeared to be "How dare you say that we should care about these thugs, by which we mean pot-smoking niggers who probably deserve everything that's done to them, when we white people aren't getting any positive attention at all?"
Lol, if you can't in good faith understand why reasonable people are on the other side of an issue, you don't understand the issue at all. From this its clear you only understand a caricature of the issues involved, refusing to address the "bigger" picture concerns that the two sides took up after the protestors in Ferguson highlighted the issues. I think you're deliberately not talking about the same thing that I've been responding to, which is why I'm saying you're strawmanning, but I guess you could just be confused.
quote:
If there was another "side" in Ferguson, I missed it.
Clearly, you missed the bigger picture in your search for "racists" to strawman into credibility for asserting an end goal without actually considering the issues involved.
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TomDavidson
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quote:
It's not a criminal act in its own right (though there may be criminal conduct engaged in).
So, to clarify, when you say that COINTELPRO was "widely recognized as conducting illegal activities," you are referring specifically to the pieces of COINTELPRO that aren't actually relevant to this conversation?

quote:
The account was from the only paper that apparently covered it.
If you do a little Googling, you'll find that while only one local newspaper had a photographer on the scene, many press agencies -- from Time to Mother Jones to Infowars -- actually followed up on the story. Eyewitnesses interviewed after the event have remarkably consistent stories, which of course differ from the single police account. While I can understand your desire to consider the police account authoritative, let's think for a moment what this tendency would mean for you in a scenario that, if valid, would require that the police dissemble: there is essentially no proof you would accept. Barring a policeman being killed by a mob with a Molotov in his hand, we will be left with civilian accounts opposed by a police account. And the police account is, to your mind, going to be the trustworthy one.

quote:
Or can you demonstrate it somewhere in their tenants or planks?
Tenets? Heh. Do you honestly think the Republicans funding the second wave of the Tea Party are that stupid? It's pretty obvious in a number of the planks, but that would also require that you admit to the use of "dog whistles" -- which I know you won't, because you couldn't be able to do that while even going this far with your ridiculously disingenuous position.

quote:
Most people on the opposing sides of the "Ferguson" issues have never stepped foot within 50 miles of Ferguson.
I would like you to lay out for me what you believe the two "sides" were. I think I've rather fairly detailed what one side was, and will freely admit that I don't perceive anything resembling logical, sensible argument from those opposed to that side -- other than a kneejerk fear and suspicion of the one reasonable side. But you're welcome to try to articulate a position held by those reactionaries that is not loathsomely
racist.

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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
It's not a criminal act in its own right (though there may be criminal conduct engaged in).
So, to clarify, when you say that COINTELPRO was "widely recognized as conducting illegal activities," you are referring specifically to the pieces of COINTELPRO that aren't actually relevant to this conversation?
That's not a clarification that's a misrepresentation. There are no criminal convictions because that's the wrong measure of how the conduct is restricted. You should just admit you made a claim you can't support and move on.
quote:
quote:
The account was from the only paper that apparently covered it.
If you do a little Googling,
I only did the "googling" I did because you refused to support your own claim. If you want to provide the actual evidence you used in reaching your conclusion, feel free to do so, but expecting me to parse through the accounts for the ones you think best match your case is absurd. And it's particularly absurd where anyone can look above and see you refer to blogs on this issue.
quote:
...there is essentially no proof you would accept. Barring a policeman being killed by a mob with a Molotov in his hand, we will be left with civilian accounts opposed by a police account. And the police account is, to your mind, going to be the trustworthy one.
In the age of camera phones, how about a picture, or a recording? It's too easy for protesters who's protest turned violent to claim it was the work of a government conspiracy.

And again, there is still very little logic in the idea that the government would want to turn a non-violent protest (which is almost always ignored by the media) into a violent one that is almost guaranteed to be covered.
quote:
quote:
Or can you demonstrate it somewhere in their tenants or planks?
Tenets? Heh. Do you honestly think the Republicans funding the second wave of the Tea Party are that stupid?
No. I think you're making claims that are untrue and unsupportable because you believe that they are the consensus opinion of the left and will therefore not be challenged.

You just did it on another thread, where you asserted freely that every President since Carter has ignored the prohibition on assasinations. Can you prove that assertion either?
quote:
It's pretty obvious in a number of the planks, but that would also require that you admit to the use of "dog whistles" -- which I know you won't, because you couldn't be able to do that while even going this far with your ridiculously disingenuous position.
Lol, in other words since they disagree on the best way to actually help minorities with you they must be racists. Talk about ridiculous bad faith assertions. If you're going to continue with this 'no linking, no supporting yourself,' policy you really need to limit your claims to true ones (and not just opinions you hold).
quote:
quote:
Most people on the opposing sides of the "Ferguson" issues have never stepped foot within 50 miles of Ferguson.
I would like you to lay out for me what you believe the two "sides" were. I think I've rather fairly detailed what one side was, and will freely admit that I don't perceive anything resembling logical, sensible argument from those opposed to that side -- other than a kneejerk fear and suspicion of the one reasonable side. But you're welcome to try to articulate a position held by those reactionaries that is not loathsomely
racist.

I already did so on this thread, you're free to go back and make an actual response instead of a strawman argument, or is reading thread too much like research for you?
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TomDavidson
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quote:
There are no criminal convictions because that's the wrong measure of how the conduct is restricted.
I am sure that those "guilty" parties in COINTELPRO were trembling at the thought of getting caught doing all that wrong, eh? [Smile]

Your argument is as follows: undercover incitement isn't a viable strategy because, in the rare chance it is exposed, it might result in someone getting off due to questions of entrapment. The people engaging in the entrapment will not be punished, but the fear that their target might not be successfully prosecuted is sufficient to prevent them from engaging in intentionally amoral or provacative undercover work even when the prosecution of a single individual is not in fact the goal of that investigation.

I hope you recognize how ludicrous that claim is. It applies when trying to catch an individual drug dealer, sure, but when you're trying to get at a larger target you don't even intend to prosecute the small fry anyway; you're just trying to flip them for evidence, and aren't really looking for arrests. If the goal is to discredit a movement, you're not worried about how many of them actually get off at trial. You worry -- if you worry at all -- about getting caught red-handed, thus discrediting your discredit. But as you can see from the modern media cycle, that's not a particular concern.

quote:
If you want to provide the actual evidence you used in reaching your conclusion, feel free to do so, but expecting me to parse through the accounts for the ones you think best match your case is absurd.
The only account that does not match is the official police account. Even the Chronicle article which cites the police account notes that other accounts exist. They are not hard to compare. [Smile]

quote:
I think you're making claims that are untrue and unsupportable because you believe that they are the consensus opinion of the left
Oh, don't be ridiculous. For one thing, believing that something is a lefty consensus would be a nonsensical motivation for me to make a claim; I'm sure that's not what you meant to say, but any literal interpretation of your words suggests a fundamental misunderstanding of how people traditionally justify their own actions to themselves.

Rather, I am claiming that the Tea Party is manifestly racist based on copious evidence of their racism at all levels of the organization, from deliberately xenophobic legislation to fear-mongering and dog whistles in speeches from those leaders and elected officials who self-identify as party members and are endorsed by the party.

quote:
since they disagree on the best way to actually help minorities with you they must be racists
I would like you to find one person in the Tea Party whose position on minority relations can be credibly traced back to a desire to actually help minorities (as opposed to, in the best case, ignoring them altogether until they make a sufficient amount of money.)

I'm sorry. I don't see an actual argument for "sides" from you. The ideas you suggest that one "side" was trying to get across -- that one should not break the justice system, that people should bear responsibility for their own actions, etc. -- were not arguments against anything the initial protesters in Ferguson were actually putting forward as reasons for their dissatisfaction. No one was calling for "breaking" the justice system; rather, they were asserting -- correctly and truthfully -- that the justice system in Ferguson was broken. No one was saying that someone killed for a bad reason was not responsible for his actions; rather, they were saying that person who choose to shoot him did not behave responsibly. You had one side making valid claims, and the other "side" arguing against imaginary bugbears and looking like total idiots.

[ June 17, 2015, 02:59 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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D.W.
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"dog whistles"
Had to look that one up on urban dictionary. Learn something every day...

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TomDavidson
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Some sample dog whistles:

"Pull your pants up over your underwear and get a job instead of stealing money from good, God-fearing Americans!"

"We know these people aren't decent, law-abiding citizens, because they had to break the law to get here in the first place!"

"Now, I ain't no fancy, latte-half-caf-half-skim-holdthewhatever professor type, but I know what it means to keep my word and get the job done."

In general, attempting to portray someone as "urban" or "ethnic," or referring to the ways things are done by "real Americans" versus some unidentified other Americans with whom the target presumably sympathizes more, are ways of communicating to racist members of the audience that the speaker is aware of the distinction they see between the intended target and "normal people," without actually having to openly voice the specific distinctions they see (and which, if they were actually elaborated upon, would be openly offensive.) When politicians are called on outrageous statements nowadays, it's often because an attempt at dog whistling wasn't quite subtle enough.

[ June 17, 2015, 05:45 PM: Message edited by: TomDavidson ]

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The Drake
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quote:
Originally posted by Fenring:
I would say that claiming "we believe" something specific that intelligence did not tell them was the case is a bald-faced lie.

And I believe that if Bush heard from Chalabi that there were WMD, and his intelligence director told him - no actually that is not our assessment, he can choose to believe Chalabi over his intelligence director and make those claims regardless. Especially in an environment where our intelligence services had messed up in historic fashion.

To be a bald-faced lie, he would have to say "George Tenet told me he was certain there were WMD", or something of the like.

I'm not trying to convince you otherwise, you clearly have strong feelings on the subject, but rather to explain why the vast majority of Americans are not joining you with their pitchforks in the town square.

If we were to impeach Presidents for lying, would any one of them finish their terms? Reagan for Iran-Contra, Nixon actually didn't due to Watergate, Johnson on Vietnam, Clinton on his intern, Obama on healthcare, I guess I'm having a hard time coming up with one for Carter.

Then there's this perspective. Can you be a good President if you do NOT lie?

quote:
...the notion that a good president doesn't lie to the American people -- that's an illusion as well. Historians say many of our greatest presidents were the biggest liars -- and duplicity was part of their greatness.

"Every president has not only lied at some time, but needs to lie to be effective," says Ed Uravic, a former Washington lobbyist, congressional chief of staff and author of "Lying Cheating Scum."

article

quote:
The ultimate test of whether the American public will accept a lie from a president is if the nation determines that the lie serves the national interests.
But, for your scenario to work legally, the definition cannot really be tied to the "rightness' of the lie, that is whether it is pardonable because people wound up liking the outcome or not caring.
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Seriati
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
There are no criminal convictions because that's the wrong measure of how the conduct is restricted.
Your argument is as follows: undercover incitement isn't a viable strategy because, in the rare chance it is exposed, it might result in someone getting off due to questions of entrapment.
No, the problem is you keep conflating things and expanding them to allow proof from one argument to serve as a proxy for having proven a different argument. Entrapment is a separate concept from the underlying activity that you are conducting. If the policy entrap you into entering into a "drug" deal with an officer you may get off or not but there is no possibility of charges to the officer because there is nothing illegal on in the underlying conduct. If on the other hand they entrap you into committing murder, they can and will be prosecuted as accomplices and possibly even murderers.

The fact that they run stings, or go under cover to be present where crimes are occurring, DOES NOT serve as proof that they are inciting crimes.

Your ONE ancient example, showed exactly that, where the underlying conduct was criminal they were shut down. That's starkly different than what occurs today, notwithstanding that they both involve undercover work.
quote:
The people engaging in the entrapment will not be punished, but the fear that their target might not be successfully prosecuted is sufficient to prevent them from engaging in intentionally amoral or provacative undercover work even when the prosecution of a single individual is not in fact the goal of that investigation.
See prior answer, you're mixing things up for no good reason. If they incite illegal behavior they can be prosecuted for the illegal behavior (which is why you claim that this is routine and in their manuals is nonsensical).
quote:
I hope you recognize how ludicrous that claim is.
Lol, you've backed yourself into a corner.
quote:
If the goal is to discredit a movement, you're not worried about how many of them actually get off at trial.
So every undercover officer is part of secret conspiracy, without any of them speaking about it for 40 years to make protestors appear to be more violent than they are, notwithstanding that violent protesters actually get more attention than peacefull ones. And the fact that there is no evidence, is just proof that its a conspiracy after all. Got it.
quote:
But as you can see from the modern media cycle, that's not a particular concern.
Lol, because the modern media isn't all sympathetic to protestors, what was that months and months of coverage of Occupy Wall Street about exactly (not to mention the favorable camera angles that made it appear to be a real protest long after no one was there).
quote:
quote:
If you want to provide the actual evidence you used in reaching your conclusion, feel free to do so, but expecting me to parse through the accounts for the ones you think best match your case is absurd.
The only account that does not match is the official police account. Even the Chronicle article which cites the police account notes that other accounts exist. They are not hard to compare. [Smile]
Then it isn't a problem for you to provide these objective sources that speak to the issue now is it.
quote:
quote:
I think you're making claims that are untrue and unsupportable because you believe that they are the consensus opinion of the left
Oh, don't be ridiculous. For one thing, believing that something is a lefty consensus would be a nonsensical motivation for me to make a claim; I'm sure that's not what you meant to say, but any literal interpretation of your words suggests a fundamental misunderstanding of how people traditionally justify their own actions to themselves.
It's not an explanation of how you justify your actions to yourself, it's an explanation of why you feel comfortable posting your opinion as if it were fact. Never said you even realize that's what you're doing, I don't doubt you've internalized it in such a way that you can't even question it. And for all your posting and complaining, you've grossly failed to actually demonstrate your case with evidence of any sort.

The charge I made against the left shows up on this site all the time, usually in throw away one liner drive bys or dog-piles.
quote:
Rather, I am claiming that the Tea Party is manifestly racist based on copious evidence of their racism at all levels of the organization,
Okay, lets see the evidence. I'm still calling nonsense on this one.
quote:
from deliberately xenophobic legislation to fear-mongering and dog whistles in speeches from those leaders and elected officials who self-identify as party members and are endorsed by the party.
Dog whistles, really? That's just a way to dismiss without refuting or considering other's arguments. It's a combination of strawmanning and pretending bad faith. Instead of addressing a legitimate concern you pretend racism, and well everyone knows racism is bad, ergo victory! Fallacy after fallacy, is it really true you don't even know you're doing it anymore?
quote:
I'm sorry. I don't see an actual argument for "sides" from you. The ideas you suggest that one "side" was trying to get across -- that one should not break the justice system, that people should bear responsibility for their own actions, etc. -- were not arguments against anything the initial protesters in Ferguson were actually putting forward as reasons for their dissatisfaction.
Nope they were directly in opposition to the solutions being proferred though. Which is exactly the point, the "side" you support seems to be composed of pretending to have the moral high ground, insisting that this justifies one sided unrelated modifications to life, law and liberty.
quote:
No one was calling for "breaking" the justice system; rather, they were asserting -- correctly and truthfully -- that the justice system in Ferguson was broken.
They asserted it was broken everywhere and that Ferguson was an example. And they wanted to break the system, like by for instance convening a show trial.
quote:
No one was saying that someone killed for a bad reason was not responsible for his actions; rather, they were saying that person who choose to shoot him did not behave responsibly.
Noone said that? Lie. And it's an interesting way you look at facts, where you can't find anyone of millions of tea partiers who could possible want to help minorities nor anyone who screamed about Ferguson who didn't think he wasn't responsible for his actions.
quote:
You had one side making valid claims, and the other "side" arguing against imaginary bugbears and looking like total idiots.
No, you had two sides making valid points, but one side pretending that it's moral outrage over an egregious situation gave it special priviledge to make changes to the bigger picture.

I'm getting depressed by how much nonsense you're pushing here just because you're not willing to admit you made an exaggerated claim you can't back.

[ June 17, 2015, 07:59 PM: Message edited by: Seriati ]

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TomDavidson
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Leaving aside the insults and empty "nuh-uh" dismissals for a moment, I'm genuinely interested in hearing any proposal submitted by a prominent politician associated with the Tea Party that has in their words the primary intention of helping a racial minority.
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scifibum
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Well, in all seriousness, a lot of people profess - and believe, I think - in lassez-faire equalitarianism. That the best way to help people is to not help them, so they'll help themselves. I think it's a completely wrong belief, but some people still believe it. So you won't find that "here are the ways we'll divert resources to help [racial minority]", but I think you'll find lots of "we have to stop [x] because it's ultimately harming [racial minority]". Of course, the unifying principle of the Tea Party means that there will also be a self serving component to that plan of action.
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KidTokyo
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quote:
And again, there is still very little logic in the idea that the government would want to turn a non-violent protest (which is almost always ignored by the media) into a violent one that is almost guaranteed to be covered.
The incentive -- rather obviously -- is to create media coverage that makes the protestors appear to be violent radicals. An added bonus is to create a justification for arresting a bunch of them en masse.
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Fenring
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quote:
Originally posted by KidTokyo:
quote:
And again, there is still very little logic in the idea that the government would want to turn a non-violent protest (which is almost always ignored by the media) into a violent one that is almost guaranteed to be covered.
The incentive -- rather obviously -- is to create media coverage that makes the protestors appear to be violent radicals. An added bonus is to create a justification for arresting a bunch of them en masse.
That, and a protest appearing to be violent tends to de-legitimize it right away. When the right to protest becomes a criminal riot the police can do what they wanted to do in the first place and clear it out.
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TomDavidson
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BTW, we're in the middle of moving at the moment, so my time is more limited than usual. I do intend to address the rest of your comments, Seriati, where I think they're relevant.

Taking them in order, in the time available:

quote:
Entrapment is a separate concept from the underlying activity that you are conducting.
What do you see as a distinction?

quote:
Your ONE ancient example, showed exactly that, where the underlying conduct was criminal they were shut down.
No. The whopping two convinctions associated with COINTELPRO did not happen (and I word it this way because the idea that the program was "shut down" is kind of laughable) because the undercover investigators criminally instigated criminal acts in which they participated -- although they did. Rather, the convictions happened because two of the undercover agents got tired of waiting around to observe a crime and burgled the homes of some of the individuals under investigation, without even trying to obtain warrants. So, yes, cops can still be found guilty of breaking and entering, but that's not the issue; you keep insisting that there's some price to the police for inciting crime while undercover, and there's just no evidence of that beyond the occasional difficulty in obtaining a conviction (which, again, in often not the point of such infiltration).

quote:
So every undercover officer is part of secret conspiracy...
No. Don't be stupid. At no point have I ever claimed that every undercover agent has been sent undercover to discredit an activist group. Rather, I have asserted that counterintelligence agents are regularly sent undercover to discredit activist groups, and you're finding that hard to believe. I will certainly not dispute that agents of the state are often sent undercover for other reasons as well.

As an example of the latter, BTW, it's worth noting that last month's Wired magazine describes an undercover agent who infiltrated the Silk Road to bring down DPR, partly by pretending to have a couple people assassinated for him. Because chat logs revealed that the agent was a bit too proactive in suggesting that course of action, and because the agent was not available to testify because he'd absconded with a good chunk of Bitcoin, they didn't push the murder stuff at trial -- but alluded to it enough that the judge, in sentencing, still took it into account. DPR got life in prison; the undercover cop suffered no consequences (but is currently under investigation for stealing Bitcoin while confiscating it).

quote:
the modern media isn't all sympathetic to protestors
You're speaking tongue-in-cheek, here, but this is true. Go look up some coverage of the Occupy protests in New York from, say, the New York Post. You've commented on the difficulty you've had finding any coverage at all of protests in Oakland, and are very fuzzy on the details of Ferguson protests. I've discussed here the inaccuracies in coverage of the recent Madison protests. The media doesn't do a very good job in general, and it's a mistake to trust them to do it.

quote:
Dog whistles, really? That's just a way to dismiss without refuting or considering other's arguments.
No, it's not. When you are discussing whether Republicans are playing the race card, you have to be able to point out that sneeringly saying, "Obama, that inveterate community organizer..." is a way of associating him with so-called "radical" activists without actually having to demonstrate anything radical about his positions or even coming out and saying that community organizers are radicals or, more crucially, figures in the black community often opposed to majority-supported power structures. Because it takes a special kind of stupid to just come out and SAY what the worst elements of your constituency are thinking, but you can certainly nod in that direction very, very hard, if you want to do more than just report on what "some people are saying."
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Fenring
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For anyone who was asking "what war crime" the Bush admin could be tried for in relation to Iraq 2.0, apparently some politicians in the UK don't think it's so hard to conceive of:

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/jeremy-corbyn-tony-blair-could-face-war-crimes-trial-over-illegal-iraq-invasion-10439020.html

The question, as the article put it, is whether Blair is guilty of war crimes, and if that accusation has enough merit maybe it really will come to a trial. But even if there isn't enough evidence or if the evidence points towards a trial not being warranted, that is quite a different matter from denying that the issue of possible war crimes isn't even worth talking about (or as some here opined, not politically convenient to prosecute).

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