Tag Archives: email

FBI says Hillary Clinton was “careless” with classified secrets, not treasonous for evading public record.

Pundits are decrying the unfair scrutiny on the presumptive successor-in-chief, pointing out that Condoleeza Rice and Colin Powell were never called out for using private servers. Other miscreants too, who should have been hauled before the justice department, tarred and feathered and pilloried. Carl Rove and Dubya Bush purged email records. Are they the new role models for what behavior is acceptable?!
 
And all that is missing the point. Hillary’s use of a private server for state department emails was more than a security breach, it was an avoidance of keeping a public record. It was evasion of accountability. It was treasonable. Richard Nixon was in touble for erasing 18 minutes of taped conversation in the White House. Hillary has deleted millions of records in flagrant violation of rules of transparency meant to check government corruption. Fortunately Wikileaks snagged a bunch of them, and presumedly the NSA has archived them all, with the entirety of everyone’s public and private record. Funny no one is reopening that can of worms.

Dear President Obama, your email MailMerge function needs tweaking

When a Codepink blogger offered her public reply to President Obama’s “This Fourth of July” email, I thought I’d poke my own fun at passages like “as America comes ever closer to achieving the perfect Union our founders dreamed.” But when I examined the email Obama sent me, that laugh line had been scrubbed. Did you know our personal notes from the president were indeed personal?

It surprises no one I’m sure, to imagine that mass emails would be personalized to address the recipient. “Dear Eric, how’s the weather in Colorado, etc.” It’s no great leap then to customize each theme according to subjects of concern to me more than others.

Obama knows apparently that I’m not likely to buy “today is a day to reflect on our independence, and the sacrifice of our troops standing in harm’s way to preserve and protect it.” In fact I do not give a rat’s ass for a single one of our soldiers standing in harm’s way. Although we have only guesstimated body counts to go on, obviously 99% of that harm flows the other way.

Soldiers who resist orders to keep heaping harm on innocents is who I care about.

Fighting for America’s freedom begins at home. Let any citizen try to petition his government for redress and he’ll see exactly whose side the soldiers are on.

My personal 4th of July email from the president does mention our soldiers and their sacrifice, but adds another emphasis:

That sacrifice is shared with husbands and wives, with sons and daughters, with fathers and mothers, who are asked to wait at home as their loved ones protect our nation. Their heroism, too, has helped pave the path of our freedom.

Now where did the White House Mail Merge function get its wires crossed on that one? If there are Americans about whom I care less than the GIs, it’s the parents who couldn’t give them better advice. Theirs was no heroism at all, it was go with the flow. Stuck hoping their child escapes unscathed is their just due. Mothers who raised their boy to be a soldier, did it for Charles Darwin.

Neither do I care to honor those military wives furiously praying for stateside widowhood and a $100,000 insurance payoff.

Clearly my Obama message was intended to inspire a flag-drapper. How many variation of the Obama 4th of July email do you suppose went around?

I hesitate to wonder what my personal email from Obama would look like if indeed he had my number. I am hoping to avoid “I’m Gonna Git You Sucka!”

Wikileaks can archive the Palin emails so she doesn’t have to, by law

palin_tongueWikileaks is off-line again. (But try 88.80.13.160) The whistle-blower safe box had just posted fragments of communications hacked from Sarah Palin’s Yahoo email account. GOP campaign reps denounced the act as “a shocking invasion of the governor’s privacy and a violation of the law” Come again? Eavesdropping is illegal?

Hackers working under the venerable pseudonym “Anonymous” posted email from the Alaska Governor which appeared to violate government safeguards about official communications. Emails regarding state business are supposed to go through government mail systems and be archived accordingly. Personal email accounts are not to be used to circumvent government oversight. The hackers invite the public to decide for themselves whether communications at the addresses sarah.palin@yahoo.com and gov.sarah@yahoo.com violated these restrictions.

Wikileaks is a repository of leaked information to which government or corporate whistle-blowers can post who want to bring evidence of wrong-doing to the public’s attention. Wired has an excellent profile of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. The site has been targeted by the courts and corporate hackers to prevent the disclosure of sensitive information. For example, Wikileaks leaked instruction manuals from the DoD’s secret prison system.

Why Wikileaks has become inaccessible this time is hopefully due simply to too much traffic. You can check Wikileak for access updates, if lame commentary. When Wikileaks published offshore banking records showing how US corporations are evading federal taxes, the Swiss bank Julius Baer prevailed upon a US court to revoke the wikileaks.org domain name.

Apparently the Secret Service has vowed to investigate who hacked into Sarah Palin’s account. This should be a revealing test of Wikileaks’ stealth measures. Wikileaks contributors use a FIREFOX pluggin called TOR to spread their online tracks over a distribution of participating TOR users. In addition communications are encrypted with PGP -Pretty Good Privacy. Unavoidably however, a not insignificant number of machines on the network are recognized to be intelligence agents.

(Scrubbing Bubbles said “We work hard so you don’t have to.”)

Bruce Vincent loves George is so 2004

Bruce Vincent receives a Preserve America Award in May 2004The Vincent email has come around again, like flu season, hoping to cast Stutterin’ George Dubya in a pious light. Though it reads like Reader’s Digest bad fiction, even urban myth, the author is authentic, the event is factual, but of course a private moment with George cannot be corroborated. Who knows, the devotional lingo may be the story Vincent had to tell his wife, to cover for a Jeff Guckert/Gannon blue dress affair, if we’ve learned anything about Republicans.

What utter tripe. We’ve all of us looked into Dubya’s eyes enough to know there’s no there there, nothing but air. What reason is there these days to be circulating such a fawning pre-election 2004 profile of Bush? I think folk are trying to rationalize their support of their previous election year candidate. History has already sized up George Bush. I doubt even Bush’s biographer will argue that this president is not the alcoholic, half-wit tool of thieving, war profiteering, war criminals.

About any notion of Bush’s depth or spirituality, I have to point to the interview he gave his friend and fellow reprobate Tucker Carlson for Talk Magazine in 1999 (now reprinted in the National Review) where he made fun of condemned killer Karla Faye Tucker. Declining to offer clemency to the reformed Tucker, Bush mocked her supposed plea by mimicking her voice and pursing his lips: “Please don’t kill me!”

The You Make My Day Award chain letter

You Make My Day AwardSo begins each post: “My friend so-and-so surprised me with a You Make My Day Award. Thank you! (You should really check out their wonderful blog!) I’m to post this with the following proviso,” etc, etc.

Nothing wrong with a little guerrilla marketing, in this case lighting a back fire up the social network where blogroll links and reciprocal courtesy comments were just not keeping everyone’s interest. Internet blogging has set into motion a real-time one hundred monkeys experiment, but of course someone has to address the task of monitoring the output. We won’t know if even a blogosphere of monkeys typing away can produce Shakespeare unless somebody is diligently evaluating the gibberish.

It didn’t take long tracing the roots of the You-Make-My-Day-Award givers to find someone who explained the rules as: “You have to pass this on to ten people” etc. And there it is. The YMMDA is a chain letter. And like so many viral emails, its driving force is a smile over coffee, pass it on.

Chain emails, whether they promise warm and fuzzies or anticipation that Bill Gates will personally pay you a quarter of a million dollars, are disseminated to chart social networks, yours. They plot connections between people, particularly the veracity of those connections measured by the speed and frequency with which you give your friends priority. Such information is valuable to anyone wanting a bead on you. Use your imagination.

So the You-Make-My-Day-Award is netting bloggers, internet users who may have moved on from circulating those clever email chain letters. I’m perhaps most disappointed that people using their blogs as creative outlets, can’t be creative enough to praise each other on their own initiative. They have to borrow a concept, a graphic and a blurb, and admonish each other to keep it up. These monkeys are getting tired.