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Patterico Cancels his Subscription to the LA Times

Updated

Patterico is so disgusted with the LA Times' irresponsible and unjustifiable behavior in publishing its story on the terrorist financial tracking program that he canceled his subscription.

...this has nothing to do with disagreeing with what I read in the newspaper. I disagree with the newspaper all the time. This is different. The newspaper made a deliberate choice to print classified details of an anti-terror operation that, by all accounts, was effective and legal. Key members of Congress had been briefed on it and had no problem with it. Strict controls were in place to prevent abuse, and those controls appear to have been effective.


Moreover, the program had been successful. The government had used it to capture the mastermind of the 2002 bombing of a Bali nightclub. That bombing killed 202 people, I said. I felt myself getting angry all over again as I continued the explanation. That's more people than died in the Oklahoma City bombing. It's the equivalent of catching Timothy McVeigh.

I hope other subscribers to the LA Times and the New York Times do the same so as to communicate to these organizations that their publishing of classified antiterror programs in an effort to undermine the Bush administration will cause them to take an even bigger hit in their subscription rates.

Update: Kathryn Jean Lopez at The Corner canceled her subscription to her weekend delivery of the New York Times.


Comments (37)

don't forget the wsj.... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

don't forget the wsj.

You chuckleheads actually b... (Below threshold)
Brian Doyle:

You chuckleheads actually believe that the revelation of this program is so dangerous that newspapers shouldn't report its existence?

How crap-your-pants scared are you guys that you'd rather live in ignorance of the Bush administration's questionable (Swift) to highly illegal (warrantless domestic wiretaps) secret programs?

Everyone wants comprehensive surveillance of suspected terrorists. That is a given.

But it cannot be conducted by the executive branch alone, with no oversight by Congress or the Judiciary.

We have had faced greater foes than Al-Qaeda without scrapping our founding principles of government, or a free and investigative press.

He should have gotten a med... (Below threshold)
Elmo:

He should have gotten a medal for reading it while tightly holding his nose, all this time. The oft quoted number for phone cancellations, the morning after the L.A. Daily Dog Trainer slimed Arnold. Just before the gubernatorial election, of ten thousand I believe is low. The fallout/decline continued long afterwards.

No one I know reads the L.A. Times anymore, let alone considers it a newspeaper. Once there was a time when they at least made an effort. Possibly even believed in what they were doing. The future belongs to the blogosphere.

Yes, we do indeed have the ... (Below threshold)
Chuckg:

Yes, we do indeed have the strange belief that publicly revealing an intelligence-gathering activity reduces said activity's usefulness to nil. That's why intelligence-gathering activities are classified.

As for all the bullshit about 'illegal' or 'possibly illegal' -- Swift had warrants, Swift had full Congressional review, Swift was as legal as school on Monday. Propagandist.

That, to me, is the crux of... (Below threshold)
Lee:

That, to me, is the crux of the matter. The "war on terror" is being led by those who are truly "terrified". They, at this point, are just playing into the terrorists plans. Cheney seems to be the most terrified of the group.

The invasion of Iraq being justified by lies to the American public, and the resulting harm that's done to our country internally and worldwide, is a good example of what you get when the war on terror is led by terrified people.

Now we're seeing new examples almost weekly; the revealing of yet another domestic spy program as being the most recent example, with the bogus "WMDs found" as being a close second, of just how damaging terrified people can be to our nation. Having our leaders lie to us routinely is taking a huge toll on our resolve to fight terrorism.

Who do you want leading the war effort -- people who are cool and calm and collected, or people scared sh*tless of an enemy they can't comprehend?

We currently have the latter.

"As for all the bullshit... (Below threshold)
Brian Doyle:

"As for all the bullshit about 'illegal' or 'possibly illegal' -- Swift had warrants, Swift had full Congressional review, Swift was as legal as school on Monday. Propagandist."

I characterized the Swift operation as "questionable" not illegal or even possibly illegal. Since it relies on data running through a little-known Belgian bank cooperative, there probably are not any laws on the books forbidding it. But as it includes government review of the financial records of American citizens, I think it falls within the purview of the American public and the legislative branch (the whole thing).

The illegal operation is the NSA wiretapping program. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act explicitly prohibits tapping the phones of American citizens without a warrant.

The only way to justify that program is to argue, as the Bush administration does, that the president's power is absolute in all matters he deems relevant to national security, and thus he is entitled to break the law as he sees fit.

This is also consistent with his signing statements, many of which assert his freedom to break the very law he is signing (see: the McCain torture ban).

Unfortunately they are inconsistent with the constitution, which gives Congress the war power and (believe it or not) requires the president to obey the law.

Propaganda? I thought investigative journalism was the problem when American lives are in danger. Propaganda seems to be your solution.

LeeI would think t... (Below threshold)
914:

Lee

I would think that Cheney is scared of another heart bypass operation? Not of terrorists or propagandists using the last 6 years of His life to make sure He never runs again!!

The recent broadcast on PBS... (Below threshold)
Lee:

The recent broadcast on PBS of Frontline's documentary titled "The Dark Side" illustrates the extent to which Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld have failed to "grok" the the enemy we're now fighting. It is available to view online in 10 minute "chapters" here. Bush/Cheney supporters would do well to view it, if no other reason than to be better prepared to argue against what the public is being told by Frontline.

Don't expect a "balanced, unbiased" approach to the subject by the Frontline producers. It's a documentary, not a news program, and documentaries take a viewpoint and "document" the arguments that support that viewpoint. This documentary illustrates the reasons why spy programs like the "money tracing" effort have been launched.

Half of Patterico's content... (Below threshold)
Ridolph:

Half of Patterico's content is criticism of the LA Times. What is he going to do, steal his neighbor's copy for column material?

What? For the 19th time?</p... (Below threshold)

What? For the 19th time?

Patterico only subscribes so he can cancel it

Lee:Cheney the most ... (Below threshold)
Charles Bannerman:

Lee:
Cheney the most terrified of all? This coming from a guy who couldn't hold Cheney's jock. Maybe we will get lucky and Cheney will shoot you face off. It wouldn't make much differenc though since you already shoot you mouth off like a Magpie.
Crawl back under your rock.
Chuck

Lee - lert get this straigh... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Lee - lert get this straight...you are citing a PBS Frontline propaganda piece as if that mans something? Is this the same
Frontline that back in the 80's dod three...three "documentary's"
on the "October Surprise". Lee you are aware that the "October
Surprise" never actually happen...but then PBS never lets something like the truth get in their way of bashing a Republican presisdent. Lee you really need to grow up...your becoming embarassing.

Chuck,Cheney lost ... (Below threshold)
Lee:

Chuck,

Cheney lost his own personal war with these terrorists within the first week following 9/11, and he has proceeded to lead the war effort in a manner which has placed the majority of Americans against the war.

He appears incapable of comprehending the enemy we're facing; an enemy who unfortunately clearly understands that a war on terror is not a war that is won by body counts.

Has it escaped everyone's n... (Below threshold)
Colt 45:

Has it escaped everyone's notice that the NY Times and the LA times not only published classified antiterror programs for all the world to see, but did so for profit? They have in effect sold military secrets to the enemy! Nice going Bill Keller, you should be prosecuted for treason!

another matter....

The New York Times publishing of the NSA secret classified antiterror programs substantially harms our counter terrorism activities and warrants prosecution under 1950 U.S. Criminal Code Section 798 of Title 18, the so-called Comint statute.

Here are the critical provisions of the Act:

§798. Disclosure of Classified Information.

(a) Whoever knowingly and willfully communicates, furnishes, transmits, or otherwise makes available to an unauthorized person, or publishes, or uses in any manner prejudicial to the safety or interest of the United States or for the benefit of any foreign government to the detriment of the United States any classified information--

(1) concerning the nature, preparation, or use of any code, cipher, or cryptographic system of the United States or any foreign government; or

(2) concerning the design, construction, use, maintenance, or repair of any device, apparatus, or appliance used or prepared or planned for use by the United States or any foreign government for cryptographic or communication intelligence purposes; or

(3) concerning the communication intelligence activities of the United States or any foreign government; or

(4) obtained by the processes of communication intelligence from the communications of any foreign government, knowing the same to have been obtained by such processes--Shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

(b) As used in this subsection (a) of this section--

The term "classified information" means information which, at the time of a violation of this section, is, for reasons of national security, specifically designated by a United States Government Agency for limited or restricted dissemination or distribution;

Section 798 continues:

The term "communication intelligence" means all procedures and methods used in the interception of communications and the obtaining of information from such communications by other than the intended recipients;

The term "unauthorized person" means any person who, or agency which, is not authorized to receive information of the categories set forth in subsection (a) of this section, by the President, or by the head of a department or agency of the United States Government which is expressly designated by the President to engage in communication intelligence activities for the United States.

The Department of Justice needs to find out who leaked this information and hold Keller and the Times responsible for revealing classified information illegally. Until then, they will continue to be an ally of our enemy and none of our military secrets will remain secret.

It it just me or does lee l... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

It it just me or does lee lee (pucker puss) come across to you as the dumbest f*&k on the planet?

The schadenfreude of seeing... (Below threshold)
The Listkeeper:

The schadenfreude of seeing Lee, Brian Doyle, and their pals lose their families in terrorist attacks that could have been prevented by these programs that the press is rendering useless will be great.

jhow66:It it ju... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

jhow66:

It it just me or does lee lee (pucker puss) come across to you as the dumbest f*&k on the planet?

Oh no. You yourself are so much more ignorant and ill-spoken -- an illiterate pimple, a jackass studying to be an idiot, knuckle-dragging Bushite praying for one more war to root for -- not that you yourself would take up arms to defend anyone or anything.

No, you're definitely a lot further down on the food chain. Thanks for asking, though.

Lee and Brian Doyle appear ... (Below threshold)
RFA:

Lee and Brian Doyle appear to be the most paranoid weenors I've ever seen. What are you guys trying so hard to hide from the Govt. Are you afraid thay will find your Marijuana Farm?

Are you laundering money? Are you planning attacks? What illegal activity are you up to that you are trying so damn hard to protect?

You aganda is so friggin obvious that you are just plain old pathetic!

Has it escaped everyone'... (Below threshold)
astigafa:

Has it escaped everyone's notice that the NY Times and the LA times not only published classified antiterror programs for all the world to see, but did so for profit? They have in effect sold military secrets to the enemy! Nice going Bill Keller, you should be prosecuted for treason!

Why, a bigger dipshit than jhow66! Can this be? I would have bet against it, but here he (it?) is.

b.Doyle: "You chucklehea... (Below threshold)
F15C:

b.Doyle: "You chuckleheads actually believe that the revelation of this program is so dangerous that newspapers shouldn't report its existence?"

Yes. Absolutely. As a direct and calculated result of this story, there is a high probability that SWIFT will choose, or be forced by public or political pressure, to cease their cooperation with the US.

When that happens SWIFT becomes safe and secure for terrorists and their supporters to use for funds transfer. Furthermore, full and unequivocable responsibility lies on a small handful of highly partisan 'journalists' whose direct and calculated action made SWIFT safe for terrorist organizations. Those who support those 'journalists' share in some small part of the responsibility as well.

The only ones who can benefit from this story are the terrorists and (at least in their minds) the newspapers that published the story. There is no other value to the story. The authors even admit the usefullness of the program!

Certainly no one would argue that American citizens are better off, and that terrorists and their supporters have suffered a blow due to this story. Not even the papers who released the story make such a claim - nor could they.

The primary direct and easily predictable outcome of this story is that terrorists and their supporters who need to transfer large sums of money to support their operations will soon have a secure and efficient means for doing so if the SWIFT program is shut down. The leakers and 'journalists' responsible for this story knew that - and still they published the story.

It is so lame of some of yo... (Below threshold)
MItchell:

It is so lame of some of you to say the swift matter or NSA program was or might be illegal.

First off, you idiots wouldn't know a law book if it smacked you in the face. You're clueless in higher level thinking as we've seen from most of your posts on this site.

Second, the sheer numbers of lawyers and legal experts, as well as judges, who've examined and commented on the matter in support of the programs' legality is huge. The number contra is incredibly small.

Only a freaked-out paranoid like you guys would even attempt with a straight face to call it "illegal" like it's some sort of settled issue.

The converse is true. So just shut your pie hole if you can't discuss it intellectually--the law, not your little "feelings" about what the law "should" be.


By the way can ANY of you l... (Below threshold)
MItchell:

By the way can ANY of you libs tell us why it is that it was OK for the Clinton administration to undertake even more expansive NSA surveillance (this was documented years ago in a tv news program), but it is illegal and illegitimate when the Bush administration does it?

Do ANY of you have any freakin sense? Shame? Decency???

I will offer for the Trolls... (Below threshold)
914:

I will offer for the Trolls. CLITTON Never did anything illegal! He never asked anyone to lie! These allegations are false!..Now Im going to go back to the job the American people are paying Me for..huff huff huff lower Mony...

NYT 09/05 (last month for w... (Below threshold)
Len:

NYT 09/05 (last month for which I can find numbers) daily circulation was 1,126,190. Circulation on Sunday: 1,682,644. That's print circulation. Who knows how many are reading on the web.

I'm sure that Patterico and Kathryn Jean will be sorely missed.

Len. Yep, the NYT/LAT is go... (Below threshold)
F15C:

Len. Yep, the NYT/LAT is going gangbusters as businesses. Stock's up, circulation's up, everyone's happy with the performance of the companies and on top of that they are single handedly fighting off the Bushbeast to save America and the world. Yes indeed.

Oh, wait, that's the view in 'Lefty World'. Actually, the NYT/LAT suck as a businesses and aren't that good as newspapers anymore. They haven't done anything right business-wise for some time, revenues are down, they are cutting heads (no terrorist supporter pun intended), and struggling to justify their existence, and stay in business - hence such grasping antics as the story in question.

I'm sure you understand that Patterico and Ms. Jean are but the very tips of icebergs that have punctured the ships of fools that are the NYT/LAT.

I'm sorry, F15C. Did I step... (Below threshold)
Len:

I'm sorry, F15C. Did I step on a toe?

"The illegal operation is t... (Below threshold)
andrew:

"The illegal operation is the NSA wiretapping program."

Show us where the Supreme Court said what the Bush administration did was illegal.


Getting back to the original topic this shows why conservatives/Republicans make things ten times tougher than they have to be. Why does any non-Leftist read/watch the MSM? If they made an attempt to be fair/objective the political blogosphere would be one tenth of its current size; there would be no need for it. The MSM is a Left-wing political institution, nothing more, nothing less. They wants Democrats to get elected and move the country to the Left so we will be more like Western Europe. As soon as all conservatives boycott it the faster it will die and the better our country will be.

The pen is mightier than th... (Below threshold)

The pen is mightier than the sword... unless you're a journalist or newspaper, in which case the pen is nothing at all to worry about or be careful of because no matter what you do you can't *really* break anything. Nothing you *ever* do will have real world consequences.

Brian agrees: "You chuckleheads actually believe that the revelation of this program is so dangerous that newspapers shouldn't report its existence?"

Because it doesn't really matter what newspapers report.

Huffington, BTW, in my little "daily brief" e-mail clearly stated that SWIFT had no warrents or anything.

Because feelings define legality in lefty land, sorry folks but it's the truth, it really doesn't matter if this is entirely legal, people won't *like* it and that's more important.

People *should* be distrustful of the government, no matter who is in power, but that distrust needs to be *rational* rather than emotional.

Government by nature needs a tight and short leash, but if you think the Man in office is any more of a danger than any other Man... you're delusional. Christians freaked when Clinton was elected, but they were wrong because the complacency under Reagan was wrong. Clinton has a *terrible* record of defending privacy and constitutional protections. If you woke up the day Bush was "selected" and suddenly feared "The Handmaiden's Tale" or the coming theocracy or otherwise found yourself scared of the future, you weren't paying attention during the Clinton administration. If you think, now, that Bush is protecting you from encroaching government you're every bit as wrong as those beating the Nazi drum.

It's not the *man* it's the institution. And it should be watched because it creeps forward under its own weight.

Accept as a fact that we *need* spys and we *need* surveilance and *then* think about how that can be done. If it was your job to do, how would you do it?

Because, frankly, the snits people are having about these programs make them sound like un-serious and irrational children. How would you prefer terrorist funding be tracked?

Len - No sore toes here, bu... (Below threshold)
F15C:

Len - No sore toes here, but thanks for your concern. Just doing my good deed for the day - providing free clues to those without.

I guess I need to type slower... As individuals Patterico and Ms. Jean will not be missed. Duh. But as indicators of the trend killing the LAT and NYT (as leading examples) they are critical. The action taken by those two and the reasons for it exemplify the very problem that is at the core of the ongoing failure of our nations leading newspapers.

Their readers are leaving them because of the editorial philosophy, content, and direction of the paper - and those papers respond by doing more of what alienates their readers.

To Lee and the rest of his/... (Below threshold)
waldo:

To Lee and the rest of his/her ilk. How do you suggest this country handle the people that want to kill us? Tell them we understand them and give them a hug?

The schadenfreude of see... (Below threshold)
Brian Doyle:

The schadenfreude of seeing Lee, Brian Doyle, and their pals lose their families in terrorist attacks that could have been prevented by these programs that the press is rendering useless will be great.

Um, wow.

Brian Doyle" "Um, wow." Tho... (Below threshold)
F15C:

Brian Doyle" "Um, wow." Though I disagree with essentially everything you've written in this thread, I completely agree with your sentiment regarding that unnecessary comment. Wow indeed.

But F15C, does Brian Doyle ... (Below threshold)
MItchell:

But F15C, does Brian Doyle understand the position he advocates may end up doing just that--increasing the risk that he and his family are killed? Because if we don't or can't acknowledge the threat, then we can't get to the serious business of dealing with it.

I doubt, based on what he has written, Brian appreciates the risk to his family, as well as other citizens.

Lee, did you miss the infor... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

Lee, did you miss the information that 500 pieces of WMD were or have been found in Iraq and there is more to follow? So I say to you, what lie? I know, it is the ones you and those of your ilk have pervertedly told on this cite. Why they put up with you, Mak44, mantis and others is beyond me.

astigafaHere is my... (Below threshold)
Colt 45:

astigafa

Here is my response to you....

§798. Disclosure of Classified Information.

(a) Whoever knowingly and willfully communicates, furnishes, transmits, or otherwise makes available to an unauthorized person, or publishes, or uses in any manner prejudicial to the safety or interest of the United States or for the benefit of any foreign government to the detriment of the United States any classified information--Shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

Take heart astigafa, you and your friend bin-Laden can still visit Bill Keller in prison on Sundays

"Since it relies on data ru... (Below threshold)
mike:

"Since it relies on data running through a little-known Belgian bank cooperative",

What a naive comment, little known? you must have absolutely no clue about the banking industry. Ever wonder what those little numbers are at the bottom of your check, its called a SWIFT routing code or ABA number. The SWIFT protocol is ubiquitous in the banking industry. Do some more research before your post such ill informed comments.

SWIFT codes are used on int... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

SWIFT codes are used on international wire transfers. I know because I use them all the time. It shows several bank code numbers for routing the wire, and the sender's name and bank account, as well as the account name and number of the person receiving the wire.

It shows no other info--no bank record info or even a social security number.

So, acting like this information is some grave disclosure of all your banking information is clearly not rational. And, the info is not legally protected per statutory and constitutional law.

Keep trying, democraps. Even a broken clock is right twice a day.




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