Thursday, May 18, 2006

Unwarranted warrantless totalitarian police state spying

The performance of the propaganda system in covering(up) the Bush/NSA totalitarian police state surveillance program is highly impressive. I just did two Google News searches, one using "warrantless surveillance" and the other "unwarranted surveillance."

1,690 hits for warrantless surveillance. 2 hits for unwarranted surveillance.

"Unwarranted" is a far more common word, as shown by 10 million hits, as opposed to 3.4 million for "warrantless" (a number that was probably much smaller before the propaganda system began evading the unwarranted nature of the current police state program.)

Using "unwarranted" makes clear from the get-go that the program was bogus. This however is not what the propaganda system is paid to do. Hence, "warrantless" is 845 times more likely.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Primum Non Nocere

Although not in the Hippocratic oath, the principle "first do no harm" does trace to Hippocrates.

The principle is not "first do no net harm."

Doing harm while not doing any net harm is a morally tenuous proposition routinely abused by for-profit medicine. Net harm cannot be honestly assessed by for-profit medicine, or by "non-profit" research funded by for-profit medicine.

For-profit medicine invariably stilts the terms of debate to favor for-profit harm.

This is how you get, for example, Vioxx. (See the VIGOR study.)

Monday, May 08, 2006

Amplified Noise Censorship

Everyone has the right to speak.

Only the rich have the right to be heard.

Information theory requires a signal-to-noise ratio of 1.0 or higher for signal to be detected. Thus any message signal can be effectively censored by amplifying the noise that surrounds it. Corporate media, i.e. the corporate propaganda system, functions to drown meaningful signals in meaningless for-profit noise.

I call this process “amplified noise censorship”.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Combating Poverty

In "Failed States", Chomsky notes the Bush administration reduced the projected budget for the Millenium Challenge Corporation "by billions of dollars." It had been set up to "combat poverty in the developing world."
(Chomsky, p.4)

What remarkable homonymy that "Millenium Challenge" refers also to the major U.S. war game preparatory to the invasion of Iraq, of which General William Wallace ("The enemy we're fighting is a bit different than the one we war-gamed against") apparently mis-spoke.

Not only that, but the war game was apparently rigged.

Combating poverty indeed.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Diebold: No Taxation without representation.

Although it’s convenient to be angry at Diebold for the Cleveland election disaster of May 2006, it is worth recalling, as the Plain Dealer points out, that “Tuesday's meltdown, which pushed the vote counting into today, was not the first, the second or even the worst in the board's history.” Beyond having polling places that opened as much as seven hours late, it was discovered on Wednesday, a day after the voting “5:30 p.m.: Fifty memory cards are missing, and elections workers begin considering going to the paper receipts inside the election machines to count votes in precincts covered by the missing cards."

Even "the CEO of the board of elections gave Tuesday's performance a failing grade."

A media interested in protecting the people's interests, and not those of "the opulent few" would give voice to a sensible remedy to a culture of contempt for democracy: no taxation without representation. Specifically, those denied the vote, since they are denied effective representation should be exempted from paying taxes. All taxes.

Then perhaps the power that be would take voting rights seriously.