Quirks and Comments

Well, I'm kind of sad to see the permalinks to individual comments are gone in this new system. Alas.

I'll try to make quick posts throughout the day referencing some of the individual comments and themes that ran through the thread. Thanks for a really lively and interesting discussion so far.

One comment that made my jaw drop came from Debater Emilio:

What if those "confidential sources" are in fact agents of terrorist organizations that use the free American press to (mis|dis)inform the average American?

That is highly unlikely, mi casi-tocayo. Any organization that takes its journalism seriously also thoroughly checks out its sources. Particularly for the most consequential stories, they're not going to trust the word of just anyone; it's got to be someone who's really, verifiably in a position to know that key information. If U.S. intelligence agencies have agents of a terrorist organization working at such high levels, I daresay espionage would be a far more serious concern than press leaks.

By Emily Messner |  May 19, 2006; 10:01 AM ET  | Category:  Your Take
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"That is highly unlikely, mi casi-tocayo. Any organization that takes its journalism seriously also thoroughly checks out its sources...it's got to be someone who's really, verifiably in a position to know that key information."
That response did not answer the original question. In fact, journalists, or anyone else not having access to intelligence information, could never hope to "verify" any one beyond what a well financed organization could portray them as.

"If U.S. intelligence agencies have agents of a terrorist organization working at such high levels, I daresay espionage would be a far more serious concern than press leaks."
Well, there are a couple of unsubstantiated assumptions posed as an answer that do nothing more than show a sad level of ignorance of the subject.

Posted by: Mike M | May 22, 2006 05:56 PM

What about the recent case in England where London's Metropolitan Police have raided a house in a Muslim area of the city, shot one inhabitant, detained his brother "for questioning" and assaulted the neighbors, all on the say-so of one informant (who is probably an Al-Quaida plant wishing to undermine any remaining confidence the law abiding element of Britain's Muslim population may still have in the police?)

Posted by: Laurence Hallewell | June 6, 2006 12:25 AM

Would the discussion about "gay MARRIAGE"be simplified if the expression civil union would be adopted? because that is what it really is. I think that the word "marriage" mixes with the religious aspect of the ceremony itself.

Posted by: Liliana R. S. Goldberger | June 7, 2006 02:09 PM

It is a sad time in our history when an activity of total disrespect for the country can include burning the flag, and that activity can be classified as an act of free speech. I dare say that the framers would have personally jailed such a person for flag desecration. or worse.

Nobody would argue that a person may speak his or her mind, but burning the flag or urinating on the flag is heinous.

If someone chose to burn a cross in the front yard of a black family, could that also be construed as an act of free speech? If that same person chose to throw a bottle of urine through the window of the same family, could that be construed as free speech and be protected by the First Amendment?

Posted by: rmherzberg | July 4, 2006 08:30 PM

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