You’re Not Paranoid If They Really Are Out To Get You

I thought this was already widely known:

The FBI improperly opened and extended investigations of some U.S. activist groups and put members of an environmental advocacy organization on a terrorist watch list, even though they were planning nonviolent civil disobedience, the Justice Department said Monday.

A report by Inspector General Glenn A. Fine absolved the FBI of the most serious allegation against it: that agents targeted domestic groups based on their exercise of First Amendment rights. Civil liberties groups and congressional Democrats had suggested that the FBI employed such tactics during the George W. Bush administration, which triggered Fine’s review.

But the report cited what it called other “troubling” FBI practices in its monitoring of domestic groups in the years between the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and 2006. In some cases, Fine said, agents began investigations of people affiliated with activist groups for “factually weak” reasons.

This isn’t news, so I’m assuming this is the “mistakes were made” announcement for closure where they admit to some minor wrongdoing, drop the case without prosecuting anyone, and then we are expected to pretend this never happened and go back to calling the DFH crowd paranoid stoners. Because it would be unseemly to look backwards, and the FBI is “KEEPING ‘MURRIKA SAFE!” How can we hold them accountable for breaking the law? 9/11 DONCHA KNOW!

36 replies
  1. 1
    Walker says:

    “Put on the sunglasses.”

  2. 2
    John S. says:

    That movie is awesome. I mean Rowdy Roddy Piper? Come on!

  3. 3
    KG says:

    pretty much the best terrible movie of all time… though the Evil Dead trilogy is in the discussion.

  4. 4
    WereBear says:

    At this point, no revelation about the Bush White House would surprise me. Dancing naked in the moonlight? Hookers & blow? Investigations based on the ten commandments?

    My astonishment bulb burned out in 2004.

  5. 5
    J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford says:

    I’m sure Darrell Issa will investigate this when Republicans are in control, amirite?

  6. 6
    Bullsmith says:

    To be fair, since Obama came into office, the FBI has devoted itself to zealously, even over-zealously, investigating all the anger and potential violence on the right.

    Hahahahahahaha. I made a funny.

  7. 7
    Citizen Alan says:

    This isn’t news, so I’m assuming this is the “mistakes were made” announcement for closure before we pretend this never happened and go back to calling the DFH crowd paranoid stoners. Because it would be unseemly to look backwards.

    Careful, Cole. You might Dem depress voter turnout with that last paragraph.

    I’ve been thinking constantly about “They Live” for the past several years. The Teatards are strong where I live, and whenever I interact with them socially, I feel like Roddy Piper, aware that I am surrounded by alien monsters just barely disguised by a thin veneer of humanity but powerless to do anything about it.

    Oh, and off topic, but that ad for “The Middle” on ABC is really annoying. Aside from the fact that it sounds like the worst sitcom in history, the last time I refreshed, it loaded twice with the two versions slightly out of sync. It sounded like an ABC promo coming up from the bowels of Hell.

  8. 8
    jrg says:

    And yet, here we are 4-5 years later with rabid teabaggers showing up at rallies with loaded assault rifles, bitching about their “freedoms”.

    This country has gone completely bug-fuck insane.

  9. 9
    quaint irene says:

    Geez, four, five seriously depressing posts all on a Monday morning. I think we need a good pet story.Or a pic of John’s late summer garden.

  10. 10
    russell says:

    I’m assuming this is the “mistakes were made” announcement for closure

    Correct. So let’s just move along, OK?

  11. 11
    jake the snake says:

    I will defend “The Middle” a little bit. It is not the best sitcom ever, but it does take on a lot of working class concerns without being unbearably condescending.

    Those concerns being layoffs; worries about how your children fit in at school, and what their talents are, etc.;
    asshole bosses; and paying bills among others.

  12. 12
    Ash Can says:

    @quaint irene: I’m suspecting that Cole’s going into the moonshine business and is priming us as his test market with these posts. If he puts up a post later this afternoon that says, “Oh by the way, here’s what my new project is; it’s really good stuff and here’s how to order some,” it won’t surprise me. I mean, why should Glenn Beck get all the dough?

    Just kidding, John. I think.

  13. 13
    Citizen Alan says:

    I have never even heard of “The Middle” and assumed from the commercial that it was a new show. Regardless, the “Heck family” commercial makes it sound so stupid that it might as well be “Petticoat Junction: The Next Generation.” Even better, I keep hearing the “Heck family” commercial, but the only video I see is for “The Chase” which just adds another level of surrealism to it.

  14. 14
    commish says:

    I’m probably not paying close enough attention but I thought the bit about adding treehuggers to a terror watch list was new. Especially if they wound up on the no fly list. I’d heard of FBI and more often local LE surveilling DFHs but not going on national watchlists.

  15. 15
    Mark S. says:

    @quaint irene:

    No kidding. The stories about Wall Street titans telling us peons to suck it up enrage me so much I can barely read them, and John’s had like three posts with that theme this morning.

  16. 16
    Glenndacious Greenwaldian (formerly tim) says:

    So…I’ll give this a shot: seeing as how you, John, and most of the BJ regulars are generally pro-Obama-clap-louder-he’s-doing-the-best-that-he-can-because-of-those-mean-republicans supporters, how do you square your O-love with the fact that Barack himself is the biggest, most public promoter of the “looking forward not back/mistakes were made excuse for the Bushies?

  17. 17
    Brandon says:

    I love how they were absolved of the most serious and most obvious crimes. Because they weren’t doing what they obviously were doing.

  18. 18
    NobodySpecial says:

    This isn’t news, so I’m assuming this is the “mistakes were made” announcement for closure before we pretend this never happened and go back to calling the DFH crowd paranoid stoners.

    That was last thread, and I assume that since the Sybil effect of bashing and defending DFH’ers has started, I assume the next thread after the new one will be bashing someone.

  19. 19
    John Cole says:

    So…I’ll give this a shot: seeing as how you, John, and most of the BJ regulars are generally pro-Obama-clap-louder-he’s-doing-the-best-that-he-can-because-of-those-mean-republicans supporters, how do you square your O-love with the fact that Barack himself is the biggest, most public promoter of the “looking forward not back/mistakes were made excuse for the Bushies?

    I think Obama is wrong on any number of things. I understand why they would not want to look backwards (‘cept when they do), but I disagree and think it sucks.

    I also think Obama was the best candidate out of all the other Democrats, and think he is light-years better than anyone in the GOP.

    See! Two thoughts in your head simultaneously isn’t hard! You can do it too, Tim!

  20. 20
    jrg says:

    @Glenndacious Greenwaldian (formerly tim): That’s one thing I don’t like much about Obama (especially considering the fact that GOPers will whine about “politically motivated” allegations regardless of what Obama or the DOJ does).

    …but I’ll take what I can get, all things considered. We could do a lot worse than the MUP.

  21. 21
    Glenndacious Greenwaldian (formerly tim) says:

    Well, John, I’m all for holding a number of various thoughts and opinions in one’s head and selectively choosing which ones to give weight to and which to act on, etc. I do it all the time.

    For instance, I believe most republicans in office are pigs.

    I also believe that Obama, even if he is innately less piggish, for some reason chooses to enable the above referenced pigs and cede unnecessary power and influence to them.

    I furthermore, also believe that because of things like “look forward not back,” “enable the republican pigs,” “escalate in Afghanistan rather than withdraw,” “negotiate away the public option before the fight begins,” “coverup and continue Bush torture and security state policies,” etc, etc, etc, that Obama is not to be trusted and I don’t believe he is what he says he is, ie actions speak much louder than words.

    With the above three thoughts in mind, I choose to withhold my vote from all of the above pricks.

    You disagree with my conclusion. So what? It’s mine to make and my vote to withhold. Cue the BJ haters…

    I don’t see why you pretend it’s so hard to imagine that things perhaps need to get a lot worse, perhaps in the form of tea baggers and pukes taking power and passing anti masturbation laws, before someone on the left arises as a leader who will actually walk the walk of his talky-talk. Unlike Barack who walky-walks the opposite direction of his pretty talky-talk. :)

  22. 22
    Cliff says:

    rethuglican wet dreams:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_Uava9mGos

    Oh, wait that was in the USA and actually happened.

    along with beating reporters and other 3rd world shit.

    vs democrats:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BB9IXTcEh10

    etc etc. theres more…..

  23. 23
    kormgar says:

    I would feel vastly better about the state of America and the direction we were heading in if this fucking country would stop looking forward and start looking for some god damned accountability.

  24. 24
    Glenndacious Greenwaldian (formerly tim) says:

    And it really IS the anti-masturbation laws about which I’m most concerned, frankly.

  25. 25
    Arclite says:

    Because it would be unseemly to look backwards, and the FBI is “KEEPING ‘MURRIKA SAFE!” How can we hold them accountable for breaking the law? 9/11 DONCHA KNOW!

    Ex-fvcking-actly.

  26. 26
    SGEW says:

    Hey, this is a story about me, personally! I’m so proud.

    I’m a lucky, lucky dissident. If I was in some other country, I very well might have been permanently jailed or disappeared. Here, I get to read about the Dept. of Justice reprimanding the F.B.I. for improperly investigating me and my pacifist friends, and then crow about it on some blog’s comment section.

    U.S.A.! U.S.A.!

  27. 27
    Cliff says:

    @SGEW:

    good fer you, I signed Petitions! (you know how evil that is – esp when you call out the govt for being war crims) so for my signatures I got years of SSSS on all my boarding passes from the fascist pigs.

    thankfully with the war crims out of power I no longer get the SSSS’s when I travel.

  28. 28
    Chris says:

    Is anyone keeping a file on these lawbreaking FBI agents?

  29. 29
    zuzu says:

    @jake the snake: It could be the greatest sitcom ever, but I refuse to watch anything advertised with that kind of loud, sudden sound that can’t be turned off.

    Of course, it can’t be the greatest sitcom about a working-class family, because it’ll take a lot to push Roseanne out of that spot.

  30. 30
    daryljfontaine says:

    “The Middle” was a lot funnier when it had “Malcolm in” in the title.

    D

  31. 31

    How can we hold them accountable for breaking the law? 9/11 DONCHA KNOW!

    Well it would seem to me that to that would require holding the Branch responsible for such accountability accountable for that – which would be the Executive Branch’s DOJ – and that would make you a manic progressive anti-Obot.

    I’d certainly agree that compared to the GOP Obama is more than light years superior and even that he was the best of the previous (D) bunch available. That he was and that this just slides by should tell you something about mocking the left along with the MSM and most of the commenters here. That also involves the fact that the Pres is about the best we could expect to get elected.

    There are reasons the dialogue has shifted so far right that today’s left would be yester-years’ middle of the road (D)s. Those who play along further the slide.

  32. 32
    Charles says:

    “how do you square your O-love with the fact that Barack himself is the biggest, most public promoter of the “looking forward not back/mistakes were made excuse for the Bushies?”

    Simple. We – Don’t – Have – Any – Fucking – Time.

    I would love to have the Obama administration to spend the the next four to eight years dragging every one of those war criminals to a hangman’s noose in a gymnasium in Nuremburg and having a vast de -neo-conization program.

    We – Don’t – Have – Any – Fucking – Time.

    There are so many fires burning here and abroad we can’t waste the time fighting over whether the criminals jerk and dance.

    Here is on our plate.
    (1) Extract ourselves from that tar baby known as Afghanistan.
    (2) Extract ourselves from that tar baby known as Iraq.
    (3) Deal with the energy issues like Peak Oil and the fact that our transportation system and economy is dependent on driving.
    (3A) Part of the reason for the massive trade deficits is the fact that our energy based ecomony is dependent on foreign oil for 2/3’s of our consumption.
    (3B) Part of the reason for overseas adventures is to maintain this supply.
    (4) Deal with the Wall Street Mess that is still hobbling our economy.
    (4a) Deal with the fact that the Republicans blocked any useful reform that would have prevented a re-occurence of such economic problems.
    (5) Deal with the 40 years of de-industrialization while simultaneously deal with Climate issues.
    (5A) Our last real export is food and the plains grain production are very susceptible to even mild fluctuations. It doesn’t take more than and increase of a few degrees temperature and a decline in a couple of cm’s of water to go from a grassland to a scrubland and from high agricultural exports to importing food.
    (5B) Part of the problem is that China’s currency is undervalued and therefore our industry can’t compete while simultaneously they are a major holder of American public and private debt.
    (6) Deal with the fact that the green revolution energy sources are now being made in China. Example. The windmill towers that could be made at Towertech in Manitowoc come from China.
    (7) Climate change is real and the next hundred years are going to be crucial. How we solve our energy issues will affect our climate.
    The point is that we have major fires burning that won’t going away by some free market fairy waving her capitalist wand. These require government focus and a battle royale over Bush isn’t worth it while the country and planet burns. Any of these issues would take an entire presidential administration, and we have dozens of them.

    We – Don’t – Have – Any – Fucking – Time.

  33. 33

    @Charles:

    We – Don’t – Have – Any – Fucking – Time.

    Oh, of course not – every one of those issues lands squarely on a desk in the DOJ. Nice try.

  34. 34
    Charles says:

    “Oh, of course not – every one of those issues lands squarely on a desk in the DOJ. Nice try.”

    To do a full investigation would require tie up the congress for years. The republicans spent 4 to 6 years on a blue dress. How long do you think it would take to really root out multiple real crimes where half the congress is fanatically resisting because many of them were actively involved? Decades, which we don’t have.

    I wish we could try.

    Nice try Chuck.

  35. 35

    @Charles:
    DOJ is Executive not Congress asshole and DOJ runs criminal investigations. Congress runs headlines if that in such an arena. Make all the fucking excuses you care to, lawlessness is that and nothing more and those who play along are a part of it.

  36. 36
    John Bird says:

    I agree that all Presidential administrations that promote illegal and unconstitutional methods of intelligence-gathering with the excuse of national security should be held accountable for their actions. Federal agencies that run flak for authoritarian practices should also be held accountable by citizens. We refuse to do this at the peril of our democracy; the White House rarely gives up powers it has acquired as an institution.

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