Tags: Bradley Manning

Official Rules for Success in John Boehner’s Office: “Don’t Talk to the Press” and “Always Say Yes”

Think you’ve got what it takes to successfully suck up to John Boehner as a summer intern? Don’t worry it isn’t too difficult. In fact, some drunk intern accidentally left the Congressman’s “2013 Intern Manual” at a house party in Washington D.C. Fortunately, the folks at Gawker got a hold of it.

The most telling part of it for me is the page that outlines the “Rules for Internship Success.” They include meaningful skills such as:

  • Do what you are told.
  • Dont’t talk to the press.
  • Always say yes.
  • You are not here to change the world.

If only Bradley Manning had access to a copy of this manual, he would have clearly understood that the values rewarded within the highest echelons of America today do not consist of courage, morality and honor, but rather ass kissing, robotic compliance and a slavish adherence to authority. If he only knew that, he might not be sitting in a jail cell for 35 years.

More from Gawker’s article, How to Be John Boehner’s Bitch:

Washington, D.C. interns — in particular, congressional interns — tend to be embryonic versions of the monsters they serve: rich, white, and drunk on even the tiniest modicum of actual power. How do they get that way? In part by carefully attending to the advice contained in the “2013 Intern Manual” distributed to the unpaid peons of House Speaker John Boehner, the 12-term Republican who superintends the lower chamber’s extreme right wing. Left behind at a recent D.C. house party by a sauced Hill staffer, the manual shows how even the lowest employees lubricate the capital’s gilded political machine.

Later on, interns are apprised of precisely which media organs they should keeps tabs on, and why. Fox News Channel: “A lot of our phone callers react to what is on FOX, so stay updated with current events.” Politico’s PLAYBOOK: “It give [sic] the best rundown of day’s [sic] driving issues.” CNN: “Good site to read throughout the day.”

The manual’s “RULES FOR INTERN SUCCESS” includes helpful pointers like “Don’t talk to the press” and “You are not here to change the world”:

Screen Shot 2013-08-21 at 7.11.32 PM

So just in case you were wondering what it takes to succeed in America’s crony, decrepit culture in 2013…there you have it.

Go to Gawker for a copy of the entire manual here.

In Liberty,
Mike

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Julian Assange Discusses Mainstream Media, the “Wikileaks Party” and our Global Awakening

Readers by definition are ignorant. We read to quench our ignorance. Readers, in effect, are easy prey for newspapers and the people that own them. Newspapers have a knowledge advantage, an information asymmetry. They know what readers don’t know yet, but want to know. And so they can distort the news or even invent it.

- Julian Assange

Julian Assange’s character has been so dragged through the mud throughout the Western world, most people just assume they don’t like him or he is a “bad guy” simply as a result of this intense propaganda. Most people that claim to have an opinion on Assange, like so many other topics, haven’t actually done five minutes of work looking into it. My own opinion on Assange was really formulated after reading the 20,000 word interview conducted by Google’s Eric Schmidt of Julian in 2011. If you haven’t read it yet and don’t have time to go through the whole thing, I suggest checking out my summary of it here.

However, the primary purpose of this post is to highlight this 10 minute video in which Julian intelligently articulates the changing state of media and journalism, the early success of his Wikileaks political party, and the massive global awakening currently sweeping across the planet. Enjoy!

Interview with Dr. Dave Janda – July 2013: Why Aren’t There More Wall Street Whistleblowers?

This past Sunday, I sat down with the always excellent Dr. Dave Janda for the first time since April. As usual, we had a lively, intellectually stimulating conversation on a wide variety of topics. From why there aren’t more Wall Street whistleblowers, to Bradley Manning, Edward Snowden as a “second generation whistleblower,” whether or not Chief Justice John Roberts has been compromised through black mail, and much, much more.  Enjoy!

Click play below to listen.

The 3 Key Takeaways from the Ridiculous “Insider Threat Program”

McClatchy’s recent report covering the government’s expansive employee snitch policy, aka the Insider Threat Program, has gotten a great deal of attention in the alternative media, and rightfully so. I finally took the time to read it and quickly realized that I need to offer my own take since it encapsulates so much of the severe mental illness, delusion and sociopathy rampant within the so-called American “elite” class.

The first line of the report pretty much summarizes what the Insider Threat Program intends to do:

“In an initiative aimed at rooting out future leakers and other security violators, President Barack Obama has ordered federal employees to report suspicious actions of their colleagues.”

There are three main takeaways from this revelation I think are crucial to be aware of.  I will cover each of them briefly.

1) This creates a horrible and counterproductive work environment where everyone distrusts everyone else.

So imagine working for the government and being fully aware that because you are going through a divorce or having some financial difficulties that you are now deemed “suspicious” to your superiors.  What about voicing a political view in a conversation at the water cooler? The mere fact that this program exists turns the work environment into a virtual prison where all normal human behavior is suspect and you are encouraged to become a government robot.  But it’s even worse than that.  This program guarantees that the nastiest and most immoral types will rise to the top. Someone with sociopathic tendencies will quickly realize that the “upside” is to always snitch on everyone. Is there someone right above you who’s position you covet?  Simply make consistent accusations against them and play the political game until you ruin that person. This works particularly well if your target is a decent person.

2) Solidifies the fact the government is not interested in solving problems, but rather is focused on continuing the cronyism and criminality and merely covering it up.

The above point basically summarizes everything that is wrong with all of our major institutions today, and why we have total political and economic disfunction. This is a topic I have covered for many, many years with regard to the financial system. The reason the economy has not really recovered and why it will not enter into a healthy recovery is that our “leaders” merely covered up all of the bubbles and crimes pre-2008.  Not only did no one go to jail, but those most responsible for the crisis were rewarded with high political positions (Larry Summers and Tim Geithner) and also monetarily through bailouts. The same thing is now happening with the NSA scandal. Rather than addressing this gross violation of the 4th Amendment as well as Clapper lying in front of Congress, the power structure is focused on making sure its crimes aren’t revealed going forward. Whistleblowers are prosecuted and jailed, while those in power destroying the Constitution are promoted. This guarantees future societal breakdown.

3) Exposes how completely hopeless and terminal the status quo is.

This is the silver lining to the entire thing. I have covered previously how the status quo has no philosophy the masses can believe in. Its position of power depends on its crimes being hidden in the shadows and enormous payoffs (or threats) for those at the top directly involved in the pillaging. Once the scam is exposed, the public will ultimately turn against the system. This is why Snowden’s leaks are so important and why the status quo is panicking. One of the things McClatchy notes is that one trend the government is looking out for is: “an increasingly disgruntled, post-Great Recession workforce and the entry of younger, ‘Gen Y’ employees who were ‘raised on the Internet.’”  Sorry, but a power structure this frightened of the younger generation cannot and will not survive. It is simply a matter of time.

Now here are some key excerpts from the McClatchy report:

WASHINGTON — In an initiative aimed at rooting out future leakers and other security violators, President Barack Obama has ordered federal employees to report suspicious actions of their colleagues based on behavioral profiling techniques that are not scientifically proven to work, according to experts and government documents.

The techniques are a key pillar of the Insider Threat Program, an unprecedented government-wide crackdown under which millions of federal bureaucrats and contractors must watch out for “high-risk persons or behaviors” among co-workers. Those who fail to report them could face penalties, including criminal charges.

The order covers virtually every federal department and agency, including the Peace Corps, the Department of Education and others not directly involved in national security.

Read the Full Article »

Julian Assange and Others Sue the U.S. Government Over Secret Courts

Many people exhibited extreme apathy with regard to the aggressive manner in which the U.S. government went after Julian Assange and Wikileaks for merely doing basic journalism.  Now, after the revelations of widespread spying on mainstream journalists in the AP case, and the criminalization of the profession itself in the case of Fox New’s James Rosen, many people are finally starting to wake up as the chickens come home to roost, as they always do eventually.

As such, I think this is a great moment to turn our attention to the Kafkaesque trial about to get underway right here in the “land of the free.”  In this case, I am referring to the trial of Bradley Manning.  If you are still unaware of this case, I suggest you watch this extremely powerful 5 minute micro-doc called Providence. 

Of course, the U.S. government argues that much of Mr. Manning’s trial must be kept secret due to “classified” information.  Sorry, but classified has become one of the most overused, bullshit term in America today.  Classified means nothing when the information is hiding criminal behavior or war crimes.  Believe me, Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot kept much of their information on concentration camps and gulags “classified” as well.  Now from the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) we find that:

May 22, 2013, New York –Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) filed a complaint and motion for preliminary injunction asking a federal district court in Baltimore to order the military judge in the court-martial of Bradley Manning to grant the public and press access to the government’s filings, the court’s own orders, and transcripts of the proceedings, none of which have been made public to date.  In addition, the lawsuit challenges the fact that substantive legal matters in the court martial – including a pretrial publicity order – have been argued and decided in secret.

The plaintiffs include CCR itself and journalists Amy Goodman, Jeremy Scahill, Kevin Gosztola, Glenn Greenwald, Julian Assange, and Chase Madar.

James Goodale: “Obama Worse than Nixon” on Press Freedom

For those of you unaware, James Goodale was chief counsel to the New York Times when they published the Pentagon Papers.  In this excellent interview with the Columbia Journalism Review, he warns all Americans, in particular journalists, about the significance of the U.S. government’s prosecution of Wikileaks.  He notes that what Wikileaks did was no different from what the New York Times did back in the 1970′s.  They broke news that the powerful didn’t want exposed.  That is the heart and soul of journalism, and if that is criminalized, so will be the profession of journalism itself.  It’s a full on attack against free speech.  From the CJR:

James Goodale has a message for journalists: Wake up. In his new book, Fighting for the Press (CUNY Journalism Press, 2013), Goodale, chief counsel to The New York Times when its editors published the Pentagon Papers in 1971, argues that President Obama is worse for press freedom than former President Richard Nixon was.

The Obama administration has prosecuted more alleged leakers of national security information under the 1917 Espionage Act than all previous administrations combined, a course critics say is overly aggressive. Former New York Times executive editor Bill Keller wrote in a March op-ed that the administration “has a particular, chilling intolerance” for those who leak. If the Obama administration indicts WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange for conspiracy to violate the Espionage Act, Goodale argues, the president will have succeeded where Nixon failed by using the act to “end-run” the First Amendment.

Could you talk a bit about President Obama’s approach to classified information and press freedom?

Antediluvian, conservative, backwards. Worse than Nixon. He thinks that anyone who leaks is a spy! I mean, it’s cuckoo.

Well, I think it’s very much the same thing. We have a leak of classified information. And by the way — you’ve got to remember [Bradley] Manning’s the leaker. Everyone says Assange is a leaker. He’s not a leaker. He’s the person who gets the information.

Read the Full Article »

Providence: An Incredible 5 Minute Film by Laura Poitras

I first became aware of Laura Poitras when I watched her eye-opening video about NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake.  I was so impressed by her interview that I wrote about it and posted it on my website in the article: The NSA is Completely and Totally Out of Control…Very Important Video.  Well Laura is back, and she absolutely knocks it out of the park with the video that provides clips of Bradley Manning in his own words from a leaked audio recording from his trial.

It has become completely clear to me that the biggest lesson the military-industrial complex learned from Vietnam is that journalists should never be allowed to report genuinely on war.  At the end of the day, that is why what Bradley Manning did was so important and why he is a hero for it.

Barrett Brown: A Jailed American Dissident

If you watched the excellent Anonymous documentary We are Legion, you will be familiar with Barrett Brown.  The interview below is from March 2011, but I found it really interesting since in it Barrett cryptically discusses his potential future arrest; an event that ultimately took place in September 2012.  When asked about him being targeted for arrest he states amusingly:

I mean Texans and indictments…it’s like a Texas Bar Mitzvah.  My dad was indicted, you know, I have friends that have been indicted, have gone to prison…it happens.

There is a Free Barrett Brown twitter account if you have any interest in following his story further.

In Liberty,
Mike