First World Problems: “My latte is too hot, the DVR Didn’t Record ‘Dexter’ and the NSA Has My Metadata”

spilled coffee

By David Harada Stone

The steady drip, drip, drip of recent revelations about the National Security Agency has some liberals in a panic. The Republic is in peril, they warn. The faux progressive occupying the White House is a “snake” says Oliver Stone. “Worse than Bush,” insist Glenn Greenwald and his worshippers followers. The United States no longer has a functioning democracy, declares Jimmy Carter. Human sacrifice. Dogs and cats living together … Mass hysteria.

Yawn. To paraphrase Jay Z, I’ve got 99 problems, but the NSA ain’t one. Well, not a very big one, anyway. But it is a distraction, and a troubling one. For two and a half months now, it seems the Left has been talking about little other than Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald (okay, some of it is Glenn Greenwald talking about Glen Greenwald, but still …).

Last I checked, the official unemployment rate was still 7.4%, with 11.5 million Americans out of work and another 8.2 million underemployed, forced to work part-time for economic reasons. Republicans have refused to even allow a vote on most of President’s Obama’s jobs initiatives. They’ve also ignored the president’s pitch for an increase in the federal minimum wage, which at $7.25 an hour is worth 20 percent less, adjusted for inflation, than it was forty years ago.

The GOP’s war on women continues unabated, as Republican legislators and governors elected on promises of more jobs devote their energies instead to shutting down women’s clinics and relegating abortions to the back alley.

Lest we forget, it was just two months ago that the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act, freeing Texas, North Carolina and other states to erect new barriers to minority voting. Add to that the Trayvon Martin tragedy, racial profiling and stop and frisk, and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dream is still unfulfilled 50 years after the March on Washington.

Immigration reform is stalled in the House. Millions of undocumented workers live in fear of deportation. “Dreamers” still worry that the reprieve provided by Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals will end if and when Republicans take back the White House.

Senate Republicans gave Sandy Hook parents the finger and sided with gun manufacturers and mass murderers by blocking universal background checks, leaving the rest of us to wonder when – not if – another madman will gun down dozens of innocents again.

As if all this weren’t enough, Republicans in the House and Senate remain determined to defund implementation of the Affordable Care Act, even if it means a government shutdown or debt default. Republican governors and state lawmakers have decided they would rather see some of their own residents die for want of health care than hand Obama a “victory” by agreeing to a federally-funded Medicaid expansion.

I’m sorry, but compared to these issues – each of which directly affects the lives of millions or tens of millions of Americans – the NSA “scandal” tastes a little like “white whine” to me.

Call me cavalier. Or callous. Or worse. Maybe. But from what I gather from reading the Guardian and other papers, the worst of the NSA “scandal” involves the daily collection and storage of “metadata” about Americans’ phone calls. Metadata. Phone numbers. Call durations. IMEI numbers. But no names or, according to officials, location information. The NSA can’t actually tap an American’s phone without an individualized warrant. NSA analysts don’t even ever look at more than a tiny fraction of the metadata records the agency collects. They couldn’t if they wanted to. With billions of such records, It’s just mathematically impossible.

The agency also isn’t allowed to deliberately target an American for internet or email surveillance without a warrant. But the NSA can and does sometimes “inadvertently” or “incidentally” collect Americans’ communications as a byproduct of surveillance directed at foreigners (not unlike the way local police or the DEA might record your call to the drug dealer they’re wiretapping when you’re trying to score a quarter of weed). Minimization rules require that the identities of U.S. persons be masked in such data and/or that it be destroyed, unless the information is necessary to understand some foreign intel (such as an American’s identity as a target of or participant in an act of terror), is evidence of a crime, or fits some other exception.

Sometimes the NSA screws up. According to a report by the NSA’s Inspector General, there were 2,776 “violations” of rules and statutory requirements intended to protect Americans’ privacy. The vast majority of these incidents involved “roamers,” foreign surveillance targets who brought their phones into the U.S. A recently declassified opinion by the Federal Intelligence Surveillance Court shows that in 2011 the court reined in an NSA foreign intel effort that had scooped up as many as 56,000 domestic emails between Americans a year (though it is unclear how may of these, if any, were actually read by the NSA) and failed to promptly destroy or minimize these records.  Fifty-six thousand is a lot. Except when expressed as a percentage of the 90 trillion emails sent ever year. Then it’s a little, as in a number with a lot of zeroes in front of it: 0.00000006222222222222222%.

Many of the headlines talk about the NSA “monitoring” or “spying” on Americans’ communications. But it appears what the agency is mostly doing is collecting and warehousing data. The NSA may be the biggest electronic hoarder in history. But the likelihood that an NSA analyst has actually listened to YOUR phone calls or read YOUR emails is infinitesimally small, unless you’ve been in contact with overseas militants on the agency’s watch list. The agency has neither the time nor any reason to peruse the mundane. Those cat pictures you posted on Facebook last week are safe. So is that email you sent to confirm your attendance at next Sunday’s Tea Party weenie roast.

It wasn’t always so. I’m old enough to remember the Church Committee hearings of the 1970s and the revelations they yielded about government spying on Americans. From 1956 to 1971, the FBI’s COINTELPRO projects targeted political dissidents, anti-war activists, civil rights leaders and others, including Martin Luther King, Jr. J. Edgar Hoover’s objectives included not only surveillance, but discrediting government critics, disrupting protests and spreading misinformation. Presidents Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson and Nixon all used the FBI and other government intelligence agencies to gather info on political rivals, government officials and even Supreme Court justices.

None of the recent stories about the NSA point to similar abuses by the Obama administration, or the kind of malicious intent and the targeting of political enemies that earned Nixon his notoriety. Indeed, the closest thing is a story on Bloomberg that revealed that individual NSA analysts had abused their power, e.g., spying on girlfriends and the like, “multiple times.” In turns out that “multiple times” means about a dozen times, over ten years. What’s more, the perpetrators were caught and disciplined. That’s actually a pretty good record for an organization with tens of thousands of employees. It certainly isn’t one that makes me fearful of government eavesdropping every time I send an email or dial a number on my cell phone.

By way of comparison, the N.Y.P.D. stopped and frisked 4.4 million people between January of 2002 and June of 2012, the overwhelming majority of them African-American or Hispanic, and innocent. While “stop and frisk” and other examples of racial profiling by local cops have generated headlines and condemnation in the liberal blogosphere, they haven’t garnered anywhere near the attention or outrage devoted to the NSA. Yet they represent a very real and tangible infringement of Americans’ rights.

That’s not to say NSA overreach doesn’t pose a potential threat to our constitutional rights. By all means, progressives should support reform. Let’s publish the opinions of the FISA courts. Let’s, as Obama has proposed, appoint an advocate to argue against NSA and FBI requests to the FISA courts for surveillance orders. Let’s make the NSA justify the bulk collection of telephone metadata and explain why limiting collection to the records of individuals tied to terror investigations won’t keep us safe. If it can’t, let’s impose those limits. Let’s strengthen the rules regarding the destruction or minimization of information about Americans collected during the collection of foreign intelligence.

But if you’re a progressive and you’re consumed by the NSA story, if it has become the only or even the primary issue holding your attention, or if Obama’s complicity in maintaining a surveillance network that he inherited and has taken small but meaningful steps to rein in makes you unwilling to support his efforts to create jobs, to protect women’s rights, to promote marriage equality, to reform health care, to control guns, or to protect voting rights, then guess what? You’re probably not really a progressive after all.

Progressives are not libertarians. We don’t fear or despise government. We see it as a tool for good, at least in the right hands. We should support intelligence reform, but leave the paranoia and obsessing to the Ron Paul crowd. We have too much work to do trying to improve people’s lives, or at least keeping them from getting worse, to get bogged down in this.

 

(Courtesy of TheBigSlice)

  • GeeOPee

    Thank you for restoring sanity to the NSA debate. There is nothing we can do about the NSA anyway until progressives get back control of the government. How do we do that with voter suppression? So what is more damaging to our democracy the NSA or voter suppression? It should be obvious to people who don’t buy into conspiracy theories about FEMA camps!

    • Daniel Wright

      “progressives get back control of the government.” ahahahahahaah

  • kfreed

    “the Left has been talking about little other than Edward Snowden and Glenn Greenwald”

    Libertarian Glenn Greenwald of Koch’s Cato Institute happens to be in business for one purpose and one purpose only: to undermine the democrat in the White House specifically and the democratic party in general. Distraction is his sole function.

    God forbid we should focus our collective energy on pushing back against the travesty unfolding in Tea Party controlled states across the country. If the left were to get it together, the Scott Walkers of the world wouldn’t stand a chance.

    The moment Glenn Greenwald defended Citizens United and started shilling for Ron Paul, the left should have seen it as a wakeup call. The fact that the emo-stooges just keep on keepin’ on calls their intelligence into serious question.

  • Richard_thunderbay

    It’s possible that Manning’s wikileaks document dump might have had genuinely dire consequences, thanks to a shady friend of Assange’s. A story from last year from the New Statesman, a center-left magazine from the UK:

    http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/the-staggers/2012/03/belarus-assange-lukashenko

    In December 2010, Israel Shamir, a WikiLeaks associate and an intimate
    friend of Julian Assange — so close, in fact, that he outed the Swedish
    women who claim to be victims of rape and sexual assault by Assange —
    allegedly travelled to Belarus with a cache of unredacted American
    diplomatic cables
    concerning the country. He reportedly met Lukashenko’s
    chief of staff, Vladimir Makei, handed over the documents to the
    government, and stayed in the country to “observe” the presidential
    elections.

    When Lukashenko pronounced himself the winner on 19 December 2010
    with nearly 80 per cent of the vote, Belarusians reacted by staging a
    mass protest. Lukashenko dispatched the state militia. As their
    truncheons bloodied the squares and streets of the capital, Minsk,
    Shamir wrote a story in the American left-wing journal Counterpunch
    extolling Lukashenko (“The president of Belarus … walks freely among
    his people”), deriding the dictator’s opponents (“The pro-western
    ‘Gucci’ crowd”, Shamir called them), and crediting WikiLeaks with
    exposing America’s “agents” in Belarus (“WikiLeaks has now revealed
    how… undeclared cash flows from the U.S. coffers to the Belarus
    ‘opposition’ “).

    The following month, Soviet Belarus, a state-run newspaper, began serializing what it claimed to be extracts from the cables gifted to Lukashenko by WikiLeaks. Among the figures “exposed” as recipients of foreign cash were Andrei Sannikov, a defeated opposition presidential candidate presently serving a five-year prison sentence; Oleg Bebenin, Sannikov’s press secretary, who was found dead in suspicious circumstances months before the elections; and Vladimir Neklyayev, the writer and former president of Belarus PEN, who also ran against
    Lukashenko and is now under house arrest.

  • chilisize

    I wonder if there is anyone more “consumed by the NSA story” who isn’t Glenn Greenwald who isn’t Bob Cesca.

    • Schneibster

      Yep.

      They’re called emoprogs, and firebaggers. They’re like teatraitors and teabillies but on the left.

      • chilisize

        Spoken like a true authoritarian bootlick on the kiss-up side of he kiss-up/kick-down continuum, scare-quote “progressive” division…

        • missliberties

          Sweet.

        • Schneibster

          So how many sockpuppets you got, anyway?

          • chilisize

            You tell me, sport: So far, your recitation of all the things you “know” about me has been immensely amusing, and except for figuring out Arizona, it’s been wrong-fucking-wrong.

            I can’t doubt that some exposition from you on the number and nature of my “sockpuppets” would not disappoint.

    • missliberties

      It symbolizes a faction on the ‘left’ that would vote for Nader, Rand Paul, or vote Green rather than realize that when folks voted for Nader they were giving GWB, the power to appoint members to the Supreme Court. While Al Gore or Obama, or Clinton were not perfect and did not receive 100% ratings for the hard core ‘principled’ left, they would have been ten thousand miles better as far as environmental policy, war policy, Supreme Court appointees etc.

      The NSA purists on the left are a drag on progress for the rest of us, because like the headline screams politely, these are first world problems. My latte is too hot. The DVR didn’t record Dexter. And the NSA has my metadata.

      • chilisize

        Ah yes, who the president is, who voted for whom in the presidential election, the beginning and end of US politics.

        • missliberties

          I’m sorry. The President is Obama. There was an election and he won? So that’s the end of the beginning, or the beginning of the end.

          Ah yes. You are obviously so smart that no one can make sense of anything you say?

          • chilisize

            “The President is Obama.”

            Yes, I voted for him, twice. Pin a medal on all of us Obama voters, and please leave any messy ambivalence out of the discussion!

          • villemar

            Sure you did. Loud Noises! Hot Water Burn Baby!

          • chilisize

            The Daily Banter: Where the most important political issue that could ever be is who you voted for in the presidential election.

          • villemar

            I’m sorry your guy Gary Johnson didn’t get in. That guy woulda taken on the Oligarchic Duoarchy, MAAAN!! Maybe Nader will run again in 2016. Because the fifth time’s the charm! Or write in Pigasus like they did in 1968. Take that, The Man!

          • chilisize

            I’m not even sure who Gary Johnson even is. But thanks for confirming my theory: It’s all who the president is, all the time, with middle of the road, authoritarian democratic bootlicks

  • http://www.facebook.com/felonious.grammar Felonious Grammar

    Oh, fuck you, Jimmy Carter! Obama doesn’t have raped and murdered nuns on his hands. I like him more than I liked you! PTTHHT!

    • Schneibster

      I think Jimmy was a better nuclear engineer than Obama.

      But I bet Obama is a better politician.

      • http://www.facebook.com/felonious.grammar Felonious Grammar

        I think he’s a better president.

        • Schneibster

          +1.

          But I think Jimmy was more underrated than Obama.

          • http://www.facebook.com/felonious.grammar Felonious Grammar

            Was he as vilified as Obama? Did he enter office with anything approaching the gravity of what Obama had to deal with?

            He should know better than to give the appearance that President Obama is a threat to democracy, and he should know enough not to join the fray without having been giving a whole lot of updates. That’s what pissed me off about Wyden and his grandstanding.

          • Schneibster

            I think Jimmy was less popular with Democrats. And still is.

            I wasn’t thinking of his latest highjinks which I agree are pretty bad.

    • Kerry Reid

      See also: Kwangju Massacre.

  • Diane M

    Amen

  • Victor_the_Crab

    What every sane person here says.

  • Schneibster

    And if there ain’t enough among protecting ACA, getting the Republican-Amurcn teatraitors to pay politically for shutting down the government, trying to fix the economy, and stopping rape wands and “stand your ground” in twenty state legislatures, how about if we discuss Syria, Egypt, and Iran.

    Seriously, these are all far more important than whether there is one fifty thousandth of a percent chance you been tapped by the NSA. If you get tapped, buy a lottery ticket immediately! Fer cryin’ out loud.

    Glenn Greenwald doesn’t care about rape wands.

  • Barbara Striden

    “Fifty-six thousand is a lot. Except when expressed as a percentage of the 90 trillion emails sent ever year. Then it’s a little, as in a number with a lot of zeroes in front of it: 0.00000006222222222222222%.

    Thank you for this; it seems like a lot of media folk fail in their jobs because they don’t know how to provide context for the information they’re presenting. Rachel Maddow was railing about these 56,000 e-mails the other night, and I immediately wondered “56,000 out of how many?” Although I suppose that facts have a way of spoiling the party, I guess,,,,,,,,,,

    • condew

      That’s sad, because Rachel Maddow usually does some of the best work putting stuff in context. I fear that when the dust clears, it will not be the NSA with egg on it’s face, it will be a lot of the leaders of much liberal and progressive thought who just threw away their claim to living in the reality-based community where meticulous winnowing of facts leads to the truth.

      • missliberties

        Well I haven’t heard Rachel mention it since. Because she was wrong!! That’s okay. No one is perfect. ;) I still think she’s great.

  • CL Nicholson

    This shows that the Anarchist Left and the Libertarian Right are mirror images of one another, the government and all forms of power and structures are to be mistrusted and ultimately dismantled. The Rand Paul disciples read way too much Ayn Rand as teenagers and the Greenwald/Salon adherents read way too much Alan Moore and Noam Chomsky. And neither side grew out it, hence why you have an irrational fear of the government spy agency spying on john Q public – even after said spies have shown you their own internal memos showing otherwise.

  • Schneibster

    Highly recommended. Great article. Thanks!

  • Patricia

    Thank you for your great article, which sums up all my thinking re: Greenwald and the NSA saga. Those obsessing about this issue are the same people who brought us Ralph Nader, which resulted in eight years of Bush and the Iraq war, for starters. We’re still digging out from that disaster. Obama is under siege, as is all that the left has fought for for 30 years (listen to Sen. Ted Cruz if you have any doubts); can we please start focusing on the critical issues that are effecting people in the real world, vs. the one in a million+ chance that someone somewhere might inadvertently read one of your emails?

  • sealiagh

    Excellent! And excellent suggestions for reforms to fix and limit NSA’s overreach in your 3rd paragraph from the bottom. Yeah, Snowden/Greenwald fans – those of us who are not consumed by the NSA story do pretty much happen to believe that reforms are called for. I know, confusing!

    Also, I have been very disturbed by the anti-government rhetoric that I have seen at other progressive blogs. As a liberal I am pro-government. Government is and can be a force for good – programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to name just a few have improved life for millions.

  • Schneibster

    Typo, third paragraph: President’s Obama’s

  • formerlywhatithink

    But if you’re a progressive and you’re consumed by the NSA story, if it has become the only or even the primary issue holding your attention, or if Obama’s complicity in maintaining a surveillance network that he inherited and has taken small but meaningful steps to rein in makes you unwilling to support his efforts to create jobs, to protect women’s rights, to promote marriage equality, to reform health care, to control guns, or to protect voting rights, then guess what? You’re probably not really a progressive after all.

    No, they are not progressives. They’re a rabid cult obsessed with one issue and intent on pursuing a scorched earth policy of completely dismantling our intelligence capabilities. Ask any of them what they would replace the NSA with and all you get in reply is either crickets or even more hysterical accusations of being an Obamabot or traitor. Meanwhile Greenwald and the Guardian are cheer leading them along that destructive trail while the far left is cheer leading the Guardian and Greenwald for cheer leading them. It’s become an incestuous circle jerk where no dissent will be tolerated or allowed, no matter how mild. Hopefully, they’ll crash and burn before they can do any real damage, but with the hysteria being raised to new highs every time Greenwald writes something, I doubt this will be the case. At this point, Greenwald could write a bawdy limerick on a public restroom toilet stall and the far left would take it as gospel.

  • 624LC .

    Thank you for this, Bob! We are filled to the rim with faugressives and their paranoia over at Balloon Juice. But while they are busy nailing themselves to crosses in Greenwald’s name, the rest of us can focus on real issues and maybe find a workable solution to our privacy/security concerns. Playing “The borne identity” with them is beyond tiresome and their ideas are “throw out baby with bath water…get into truck…run over baby…pee on bathwater…set fire to home where baby and bathwater were…pout”

    • Benthedailybanter

      Good points, but the article was written by David Harada Stone!

      • 624LC .

        Whoops – then my thanks is to Daily Banter and David Stone! Can’t let my crush get all the credit! Thank you! :)

        • DHaradaStone

          No worries! I took it as a compliment.

  • WiscoJoe

    First they came for every oppressed group in human history and I said nothing because shit happens and I’m a rugged individualist. Then they came for my metadata and I freaked the F out because liberty and stuff that’s why shut up.

  • missliberties

    Excellent excellent piece. Great headline. I hope this gets lots of exposure.

    The hysteria by hard core progressive over NSA, seems directly proportional to their sense of self-importance, because the OWS movement and it’s powerful message of camping in parks so threatening to the powers that be, that the NSA obviously must be targeting their activities?

    There is a segment of ‘libertarian progressives’ who post at places like dKos and FDL and in my opinion a few are posers attacking liberals from the left.

    Assange and Greenwald are on the same page and the picture they are painting of their agenda isn’t rainbows and lollipops.

  • Christopher Foxx

    Last I checked, the official unemployment rate was still 7.4%, with 11.5 million Americans out of work and another 8.2 million underemployed, forced to work part-time for economic reasons. Republicans have refused to even allow a vote on most of President’s Obama’s jobs initiatives.

    The GOP’s war on women continues unabated, as Republican legislators and governors elected on promises of more jobs devote their energies instead to shutting down women’s clinics and relegating abortions to the back alley.

    Lest we forget, it was just two months ago that the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act, freeing Texas, North Carolina and other states to erect new barriers to minority voting.

    Senate Republicans gave Sandy Hook parents the finger and sided with gun manufacturers and mass murderers by blocking universal background checks, leaving the rest of us to wonder when – not if – another madman will gun down dozens of innocents again.

    As if all this weren’t enough, Republicans in the House and Senate remain determined to defund implementation of the Affordable Care Act, even if it means a government shutdown or debt default. Republican governors and state lawmakers have decided they would rather see some of their own residents die for want of health care than hand Obama a “victory”

    If only the President would actually say that, verbatim (yes, it’s time someone in a leadership position called the GOP’s “giving the finger” what it is) it could actually make a difference and get things moving.

    Oh, but that’s just not how it’s done.

    Grrrr.

  • That River Gal

    As someone who badly needs a job and hasn’t been able to see a doctor in over two years, I applaud you for this.

  • blackdaug

    What a concise, well written, even handed summary of the whole matter, from an actual progressive point of view.
    So why isn’t this kind of article front page on any other “progressive” sites?
    Oh. yeah..not enough side boob…

  • Lazarus Durden

    This article, besides Bob Cesca’s unceasing awesome work, has summed everything I find infuriating about a certain segment that obsesses over Snowden and the NSA. Bravo!

    • missliberties

      What I find verrrry interesting is that this segment of Snowden obsessers have been around for a long long time posing as liberals. They are the most insulting, self-centered people I have ever come across on the internets. And they are not freaking progressives. They would rather cut off their noses to spite their face than accept a modicum of progress.

      • http://www.facebook.com/felonious.grammar Felonious Grammar

        Yep. I was reading Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paolo Friere today. He described the demagogues of the left perfectly as “sectarians”. They think they’re revolutionary, but they yearn like hell to be the oppressor for our own good, of course, what poor sheep(le) we are.

        So many privileged white men are going nuts with a black man on top, their implicit racism is twisting their nuts.

        I would quote Freire, but I’m too busy— before I got home I was reading about the problems of how these faux revolutionaries do not consider the here and now. There is no where to go and nothing to do when you omit the here and now.

        I stopped visiting a feminist philosophy website for a while after a post asking what people thought of the Bradley Manning sentence. I and another commenter said that we thought it was fair. Someone commented about how disgusting “some of the responses were”. It was just the greatest injustice ever, the President should pardon him and pin a medal on him— her.

        There was a petulant demand made that denies the present reality as it is, and the insistence that anyone who does not agree is a bigot who hates transsexuals. What else could it mean? The comments were closed after a comment claiming that anyone who thinks that anything shy of the DOD providing Chelsea Manning with hormone treatments and the choice of a women’s prison can’t say anything.

        This is their fight?!

        The military that is just now being forced to deal with the endemic problem of sexual assault is supposed to suddenly give Bradley Manning everything he wants because he’s a WHITE MAN who feels like a woman? Is that it?

        I don’t care what he thinks he is, or what he wants to be, or who thinks the DOD should make his sexual identity a priority right now— I think he’s doing time for his crime. I’m quite concerned about people being able to live out the gender of their choice in peace, but it’s shouldn’t always be a priority for the government, ya know. I also think we should ask women what they think about being required to bunk with shes with penises in prisons before we conclude that it’s the best thing for all concerned and the purity of our slogans.

        Elizabeth Warren said she didn’t think that that would be a good use of taxpayers’ money, so she’s likely no good anymore.

        • missliberties

          That is the trick isn’t it.

          “…the demagogues of the left perfectly as “sectarians”. They think they’re revolutionary, but they yearn like hell to be the oppressor for our own good, of course, what poor sheep(le) we are.”

          Or which is better, dictatorship for your own good, or noisy messy democracy. It’s fascinating to me that Assange is promoting a fascist, dictatorish platform in his campaign to win a political position in Australia, for ‘the greater good’.

          If I may indulge: I do believe that the phenomon described in the quote above, is something that Obama understands well. That is why he is often seen as leading from behind. Ginsberg has said recently that Roe v Wade was too much too soon to be agreeable to the majority, and the backlash has never ended. We saw the opposite with gay rights, when the dam finally broke the people were more than ready for a change.

          We have seen how appalingly mean spirited and intolerant so many ‘progressives’ have become regarding the NSA. These type of intolerant liberals exemplify the reason that once liberal Breitbart fell off the wagon. You absolutely will never change anyone’s mind by screaming racist. The first rule of war is to empathize with the enemy. Many many good hearted people have good intentions and come to their views without malice. Even if liberals find these views abhorant, they need to understand that backing people in to a corner and calling them names will never work. In that regard Chelsea Manning is really pushing the envelope, expecting tax payers to pay for her hormone therapy. It’s galling to say the least and too much too soon.

          Thanks for sharing. I love stuff like this. Politics is essentially social psychology and a study of human nature. Stuff I have always found fascinating.

          • http://www.facebook.com/felonious.grammar Felonious Grammar

            They treat Obama like he’s not even human— they treat him like a “thing” that they “possess”. Clue-ue.

  • Badgerite

    Excellent article. Thank you for summing it up so well.