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Censorship United States Your Rights Online

White House Pressuring Registrars To Block Sites 569

An anonymous reader writes "While the Senate is still debating a bill that would force registrars and ISPs to block access to sites deemed 'infringing,' it appears that the White House's IP Czar is already holding meetings with ISPs, registrars and payment processors to start voluntarily blocking access to sites it doesn't like. Initially, they're focused on online pharmacies, but does anyone think it will only be limited to such sites? ICANN apparently has refused to attend the meetings, pointing out that they're 'inappropriate.' Doesn't it seem wrong for the US government to be pushing private companies to censor the Internet without due process?"
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White House Pressuring Registrars To Block Sites

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:42PM (#33751566)

    Meet the new boss, same (worse?) as the old boss.
    Goddamn idealogues seeing everything in black/white terms. This is your fault.

    • by Infonaut ( 96956 ) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:57PM (#33751798) Homepage Journal

      Meet the new boss, same (worse?) as the old boss.

      I voted for Obama based on my belief that he would make better decisions than McCain. We tend to forget that the election was not a yea or nay vote for Obama. It was a contest between two contenders.

      Has Obama done everything I want him to do? No. Has he made decisions (like this one) that I disagree with? Yes. Am I still happy that I voted for him rather than McCain, the guy who wanted to put the freak from Alaska a heartbeat away from the Presidency? Abso-freakin-lutely.

      As for being worse than the old boss, your memory must be failing. Bush was the most corporate-friendly President we've seen. Undoing the damage he did to civil liberties and the environment alone will take years.

      • by electron sponge ( 1758814 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:05PM (#33751938)

        Undoing the damage he did to civil liberties and the environment alone will take years.

        I see President Obama is making great headway in undoing the damage President Bush did. Policies like this are sure-fire ways to improve the status of civil liberties in this country. Or not.

        At least with Bush we could fall back on, "hey, the guy's a stooge for corporate interests, what did we expect?" Obama on the other hand is doing pretty much exactly what he promised not to do regarding liberties, transparency, and many other areas that made people want to vote for him.

        Somehow we need to put a stop to this practice of appointing "Czars". Anyone who can't pass muster with the Senate shouldn't be calling shots in the Executive Branch.

        • by commodore64_love ( 1445365 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:57PM (#33752718) Journal

          >>>Somehow we need to put a stop to this practice of appointing "Czars". Anyone who can't pass muster with the Senate shouldn't be calling shots in the Executive Branch.

          Remember when I said Executive Orders should be unconstitutional? That includes executive orders from czars. It is Congresses' job to make laws, not the executive branch (which merely executes laws). Furthermore the whole of the US government, which includes all three branches, is forbidden from exercising powers never granted to it per the 10th Amendment. That is not just an optional piece of wording - it's the Law - ruling above even the president.

          You want to put a stop to "czars"? Make the 10th Amendment supreme. Make "the appointing of czars" a reserved power of the States, never granted to the US. While Congress was given the power to regulate products on the internet (interstate commerce), nobody in the executive branch ever was.

          • So is there any question left that we need someone that will stand up for the right to exchange information even if it means such freedom could potentially be abused? (tpb, anyone?)
        • by youngone ( 975102 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @05:03PM (#33752796)
          So really it just comes down to Politicians lying to get into power, then doing whatever their corporate masters tell them to do once they get there. Bush is an idiot, and transparently a corporate shill. Obama is just a slicker, more authoritative one.
      • by kalirion ( 728907 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:05PM (#33751946)

        Undoing the damage he did to civil liberties and the environment alone will take years.

        Dunno about the environment, but the current administration is taking quite the opposite approach to undoing damage to civil liberties.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by bonch ( 38532 )

          Hey, voting for the big-government guy to protect civil liberties sure makes sense to me!

          It looks like Americans are finally realizing that big government is damaging to civil liberty and that lawmakers are above the law.

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by ArsonSmith ( 13997 )

            No! no! we need a really big government to protect those civil liberties for us from being infringed upon by big govern.....ohh now I get it.

      • by biryokumaru ( 822262 ) <biryokumaru@gmail.com> on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:06PM (#33751950)

        Oh my fucking god. I am throwing away 5 mod points posted elsewhere for this. You, sir, are the problem.

        It was a contest between two contenders.

        No it fucking was not. There were 5, count them, 5 candidates who were registered on sufficient ballots to win the presidency. The fact that you are too fucking ignorant to be even dimly aware of what they show outside of CNN is utterly pathetic.

        Stop being part of the problem.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          Lemme know when one of the others gets more than about 1% of the vote. Until we get rank order voting or instant runoffs or something it's just not going to change.
          • by FoolishOwl ( 1698506 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:25PM (#33752256) Journal

            Voting for third-party candidates is actually a viable strategy.

            The Democrats and Republicans usually craft their campaigns to differ from each other by the minimum possible for there to be a discernible difference. Presidential elections are frequently decided on the basis of a few percentage points.

            This means a candidate that has little chance of being elected can actually have a significant influence on the election, if they can attract a few percentage points of votes -- that means one or the other major party candidates will have to adjust their platform to try to draw those voters, or lose the election. Ross Perot (not someone I admire, by the way) had this sort of influence on the Republicans, after he won 8% of the vote in 1996.

            • by Hatta ( 162192 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:56PM (#33752708) Journal

              If that actually worked the Democrats would have taken a turn to the left after Nader cost them the election in 2000. But they decided to try to win over Bush voters instead of Nader voters.

            • by Xylantiel ( 177496 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @05:06PM (#33752844)

              Stop playing games. Your argument is one for why third-party candidates should RUN, not for us to vote for them. You are simply claiming that it defines a voter group that can be addressed in campaigns.

              Until there is a rank-order voting system in place (which is what your arguments really point toward), sensible voters will continue to vote strategically. One of the problems of a winner-takes all system is that a third party candidate will always hurt the majority of his supporters more by taking relatively more away from their second choice candidate.

              I suspect your whole line of reasoning as being disingenuous. The original point is that the general republican stance on this kind of speech issue is blatantly worse than that of the general democratic stance. So reacting to this with "nothing's changed" is disconnected from reality. The presence of third party candidates does not change this.

          • by a whoabot ( 706122 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:38PM (#33752438)

            I'm fairly sure that if people started voting for those candidates, those votes would probably be counted, instant run-off or not. In Canada there are usually more than two candidates in any riding and no instant run-off voting. In my riding it was a close race between three different candidates -- Liberal, Conservative and NDP -- the NDP won.

            I think I agree with the grandparent more -- as it relates to politics, the majority of people consume mainstream media almost exclusively (read: Viacom, National Amusements, Time Warner, Disney, News Corp.) and so, lo and behold, they vote for mainstream candidates (read: Democrats, Republicans).

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              But in Canada we have a system where each riding you win is worth a seat for your party and the PM is the leader of whichever party gets the most seats. In the states it's a winner take all deal. Whichever party has the MOST votes gets their guy in charge. Independents and third parties make sense for American Congress and Senate races, but for the presidential race you're just going to hurt whatever major party your policies are closest to (ie, if a third party liberal candidate gets 10% of the US vote h

          • by ElectricTurtle ( 1171201 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:40PM (#33752460)
            And that's self defeating, a self-fulfilling prophecy, like all the other people who say 'I'm not wasting my vote on somebody who can't win!' And then they don't win... surprise... because people didn't vote for them.

            I for one can say fuck em both, I voted for Barr.
            • by im_thatoneguy ( 819432 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @05:14PM (#33752962)

              Here's the trouble though:

              Liberals are a bunch of disorganized, self defeating, introspective idealists. That means presented with 30 different ideas you'll get 30 different candidates who all divide the vote.

              Conservatives are structured, team oriented cheerleaders. They stay on message. They circle the wagons. They read the talking points (which are actually catchy) and STICK to them.

              Just based on personality the Conservatives would win just about every time. If you just took environmental protection you would end up with:
              1) The Cap and Trade candidate
              2) The Carbon Tax candidate
              3) The nuclear subsidy candidate
              4) The green tech tax credit candidate.

              On the conservative side you would get:
              1) The 'Global Warming is a con to steal your freedom.' candidate

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by jimrthy ( 893116 )
          Depends on what state you were in. Here, it's almost impossible for a 3rd party candidate to make it onto the ballot. And they don't allow write-ins.
      • by pete-classic ( 75983 ) <hutnick@gmail.com> on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:08PM (#33751986) Homepage Journal

        It's too bad you don't have the courage to vote your conscience. If you did, we might get a candidate that you actually want, instead of the second-most-objectionable candidate.

        To quote Penn Jillette, "Keep voting for the lesser of two evils and things will just keep getting more evil." [hutnick.com]


        • by Znork ( 31774 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:34PM (#33752364)

          I used to vote along the 'realistic' least evil lines, but over the last decade I've come to regard voters in democracies as complicit in, and responsible for the policies of the ones we vote for. And so I cannot vote for any party whose actions I find unconscionable; I'd carry the stain of responsibility, no matter how small a part, for their actions on my conscience.

          I might not get a candidate that wins these days, but at least I'm not getting betrayed by mine or made part of their crimes.

        • by CynicTheHedgehog ( 261139 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @05:11PM (#33752918) Homepage

          Write to your state legislature and request preferential voting ballots. The plurality system we have today causes people to vote for one of two candidates that is most likely to win and offends them the least. With preferential voting you can truly vote your conscience without "robbing" your second- or third-ranked candidate of a vote. Some states already have this; see:

          http://instantrunoff.com/ [instantrunoff.com]
          http://www.fairvote.org/ [fairvote.org]

      • by Concerned Onlooker ( 473481 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:09PM (#33752002) Homepage Journal

        "Undoing the damage he did to civil liberties and the environment alone will take years."

        Especially at the rate Obama is going.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Coren22 ( 1625475 )
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by bonch ( 38532 )

        I voted for Obama based on my belief that he would make better decisions than McCain.

        Which were based on vague promises and TV speeches. Unlike Obama, McCain had a public promise to shrink the government and a record showing his history of reaching across the political aisle to work with Democrats. He even bashed the Republican Party at the Republican convention. But people got caught up in the culture of personality around Obama, acting on their emotions and the glowing media coverage where he made tons of

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by GooberToo ( 74388 )

        I voted for Obama based on my belief that he would make better decisions than McCain.

        And that's why the majority made such a clearly bad decision. Anyone who took a step back from all the talking points could clearly see they had exactly one path available; regardless of who you voted for. There was McCain who told people the truth - which wasn't what they wanted to hear. Then there was Obama who lied, lied, and lied some more and only told people what they wanted to hear. Exact opposites. Once he was in office, Obama very closely followed the plans cleanly laid out by McCain (and other Rep

  • by WillAffleckUW ( 858324 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:42PM (#33751568) Homepage Journal

    I wonder how many WH officials worked for or intend to work for Big Pharma companies that don't want Americans to pay the same CHEAP prices for medications that the REST OF THE WORLD pays?

    I'm guessing most of them.

    Single payer - what we should have done.

    • The solution to fight big pharma is reducing patent monopolies to the point they are really maximizing innovation, and easing access of generics on the market.
      Chinese online stores that sell counterfeit Viagra are not part of the solution.

    • Big Pharma saw the pot at the end of the Rainbow with the Health Care Bill. So they made a deal, this is simply part of the payoff. Of course they will be paying those who pushed the law onto the land with nice contributions to their political campaigns.

  • by Androclese ( 627848 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:42PM (#33751576)

    Doesn't it seem wrong for the US gov't to be pushing private companies to censor the internet without due process?"

    Does it seem wrong? Yes.

    Is it surprising with this Administration, coming from a made-up post that was not vetted by Congress and is not supposed to have any operational power? Not in the least.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      > Doesn't it seem wrong for the US gov't to be pushing private companies to censor the internet without due process?"

      No--it seems wrong for the US gov't to be pushing private companies to censor the internet *with or without* due process.

      Censorship is only legal in relatively narrow situations. Commercial speech that is not truthful, for example. (e.g. "100s of television stations for free" scams.)

      Our argument about blocking prescription sites is basically a slippery slope argument--they'll block other

  • Due Process? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Akido37 ( 1473009 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:43PM (#33751600)
    When the Obama Administration claims the right to ASSASSINATE CITIZENS [salon.com] without due process, I'm not surprised that a little thing like blocking websites doesn't merit due process either.
    • When the Obama Administration claims the right to ASSASSINATE CITIZENS [salon.com] without due process, I'm not surprised that a little thing like blocking websites doesn't merit due process either.

      Don't know why the parent got modded troll. Guess putting your fingers in your ears and modding someone troll is an appropriate response to news you don't want to believe.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Maybe off-topic, or maybe not, but it's not trolling. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8606584.stm [bbc.co.uk] I'm fine with killing al-Awlaki, but targeted assassination, just on the say-so of the National Security Council, is open to abuse. There needs to be judicial review or congressional oversight. If the Whitehouse shuts down your website, at least you're still alive to take it to court.
  • So, something I've been thinking a bit about lately as I watch the last vestige of freedom get choke-slammed by our government. One they finally do take away our Internet (in form of access and concept), what's to prevent us from then just building a new one requiring more technical acumen to get to, putting them back at square one. It's a minor setback for us, but really, where is the horror?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Firemouth ( 1360899 )

      ...what's to prevent us from then just building a new one requiring more technical acumen to get to, putting them back at square one. It's a minor setback for us, but really, where is the horror?


    • by Amouth ( 879122 )

      I've always wondered why we don't just as a group - as a ant hill style mess - just create our own web on top of the existing - run everything through tunnel connections run our own fault tolerant internet on top of the existing.. sure its a fragmenting net but it would be a private and resilient net.

    • Can you afford to lay huge amounts of fiber all over the place? Can you get the easements and deals to allow you to string cables either along poles or underground? I thought not. The geek know-how is important, but unfortunately is not enough to build much more than a somewhat more sophisticated BBS.

      Remember who funded the original ArpaNet?

  • It often seems the US is trying to turn itself into a has-been ghetto on the world stage. Due process is one of those pillars of democracy that they fight so hard to bring the rest of the world.
  • In a word: Yes. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kheldan ( 1460303 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:51PM (#33751718) Journal
    Son, I am disappoint. Did I get magically transported to Iran during the night and not notice? If a site is doing something illegal, then by all means shut them down, but you do NOT get to arbitrarily censor things just because you don't like them.
  • by kaptink ( 699820 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:54PM (#33751758) Homepage

    Is ICANN tied to the UN or the USA?

    This all seems very bad and very wrong. Using online pharmacies as the primary reason just doesn’t wash with me. No one country should 'own' the internet. And without due process you have to really wonder what the hell is going on here. I thought the Australian government was going to far with mandatory censorship but this is pretty frightening.

    • It's tied to the US government, but not directly. It's not a federal agency, but a non-profit corp. with the blessing of the US gov. to do what it does.
  • by webdog314 ( 960286 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @03:55PM (#33751768)

    Screw the reason for the censoring. ISP's shouldn't be making decisions on content AT ALL. Today it's online pharmaceuticals. Tomorrow it'll be sites pertaining to Islam, or in opposition of the government. How long do you think it will take our leaders to demand a system by which THEY can add sites or domains to the blacklist directly?

  • These online pharmacies want to get paid right? So if you dont want them doing
    business in the US, yank or freeze their CC vendor accounts. Can't they do that?

  • Story summary bias (Score:4, Insightful)

    by slapout ( 93640 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:00PM (#33751854)

    "Doesn't it seem wrong for the US gov't to be pushing private companies to censor the internet without due process?"

    If Bush had been president, this headline would have read: "Doesn't it seem wrong for the Bush Whitehouse to be pushing private companies to censor the internet without due process?" But the Slashdot editors voted for Obama, so they can't make him look bad, even if they disagree with him

  • by overshoot ( 39700 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:02PM (#33751900)

    Doesn't it seem wrong for the US gov't to be pushing private companies to censor the internet without due process?

    Yes, it's wrong. Those powers should only be used to kidnap American citizens and ship them off to be tortured and killed in secret.

    Besides, why not just have Cyber Command hack their domain registration accounts? Much simpler.

  • The WTO will just give more free IP! pharmacies are much bigger then on line betting / poker.

    Any ways if we where to push it candida may just end with rights to us tv / other media for free.

    BIG drugs sucks and we pay more then any other place for meds!

  • These "objectionable sites" may consider adding some political commentary (perhaps a policy statement on the topic of drig regulation) and then if the governement tries to shut them down, sue using the 1st amendment .

    The only solution for the government then perhaps becomes a much finer grained block list (specfiic pages) which the web sites can evade by moving stuff around, or, by having political speech on every page.

    The question would then be how the US Supreme court would view a "voluntary" block lis

  • It's His Fault (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dugn ( 890551 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:07PM (#33751974)
    Down with Bush Hitler! Wait...
  • How about if they pull whitehouse.gov on the grounds that they're promoting breaking the Internet.
  • by thestudio_bob ( 894258 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:13PM (#33752066)

    I've said this before and I'll keep saying it...

    If you are in the U.S. and you want change, and I really mean serious change, then you have the power to make a difference. All it takes is for you to do a little bit of research and maybe 30 minutes of your time to VOTE. The biggest problem is that we have these two parties who are totally out of touch and/or basically just don't give a rats ass, about the citizens.

    Make a change and do the following:

    • Don't just vote for the republicans and just don't vote for the democrats, this time try to find some independant candidates (Trust me, they are out there. Big media just doesn't want you to know about them)
    • Don't be fooled by the parties marketing. It's marketing, it's supposed to razzle-dazzle you, it's not real.
    • Find an independant candidate who you can relate with and vote for them.
    • Don't buy into the hype that a vote against the Republican/Democratic party is akin to throwing away your vote.
    • Research your candidates, if they have money, then ask where did they get that money from?
    • Try to persuade your friends and family to do the same.

    Sure, your guy might not make it in, but hopefully you can sleep better at night and send a message to these scummy politicians that we are fed up.

    • by wizkid ( 13692 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:22PM (#33752182) Homepage

      I've been voting for non-democrap/republishit candidates since the patriot act, which violates the constitution.

      If republican's are for a smaller government, why did the federal gov balloon during their era.

      If Democraps are for a socialist government, why do the give in to every corporate request that they make?

      Why are people so clueless that they can't figure out what these a$$holes are up to?

  • by Nom du Keyboard ( 633989 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:23PM (#33752218)
    This seems to be blocking by obscurity -- i.e. removing DNS listings, but IP addresses persist and would still reach the site if you knew which one to type in. How long before OpenDNS morphs into FreeDNS (or AltDNS) or some other service that you can apply to in order to be listed in a manner free of government interference? There is, to my belief, no technical reason why one can't subscribe to the DNS listing service of one's choice. We all use the standard DNS system at the moment just because it gets us to everywhere we want to go. When it stops doing that then an alternate DNS systems becomes viable and attractive. Can the government ban that?

    Can they ban a local to your machine (hey, hard drives are LARGE these days) DNS database that distributes listings by P2P for "banned sites"? I may be wrong, but it is a truism that the Internet routs around damage, including censorship.
  • by pavera ( 320634 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:24PM (#33752230) Homepage Journal

    Second verse same as the first, if this is the "Change" everyone wanted... wow... I'd rather have had bush for another 8 years, started 2 more wars (North Korea and Iran) than have a censored internet, be forced to buy something by the federal government (I have health insurance already, but being FORCED to pay money for something, anything besides taxes, by the government is a step WAY BEYOND the freedoms this country is supposed to stand for).

    And he hasn't even rolled back any of the Bush "secret" stuff, or closed Guantanamo. Instead as soon as he was in office he decided all that stuff was great!

    Never been a worse president than Obama.

  • 42, or is it 57? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Nom du Keyboard ( 633989 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:30PM (#33752304)
    Next time think before voting for a President who believes we have 57 states. Second grade kids know better than that.
  • by anorlunda ( 311253 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @04:34PM (#33752370) Homepage

    Does the Obama Administration Hate Free Speech?

    It started with a half-hearted campaign against Fox News. They couldn't censor them so they tried to discredit them. Next the White House called liberal commentary on MSNBC and invaluable public service.

    Then comes the Citizens United case. They hate the idea of first amendment rights being given to corporations, but they love it for non-profits and labor unions.

    Next, Obama couldn't bring himself to criticize the backers of the ground zero mosque but he couldn't resist trying to prevent a preacher in Florida from exercising his first amendment rights.

    Now we come to web sites. Time to try to eliminate the ones we don't like.

    Never before have we had such a thin-skinned president, nor an administration so openly contemptuous of rights for those who disagree with them. I suppose tha't not really true, America once passed the Alien and Sedition Act.

    This hostility to free speech is a far greater threat to your and my civil rights than the Patriot Act ever was. The current White House threatens freedom more than Dick Cheney and Karl Rove ever imagined. Where is the outcry? Where are the demonstrators? Where are the media campaigns? WTF?

    Sure I'll blow all my mod points for daring to post anti-Obama stuff. So be it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Bob9113 ( 14996 )

      Sure I'll blow all my mod points for daring to post anti-Obama stuff. So be it.

      Ummmm, look back up through the thread. I just read everything modded at 5. There was one post that was favorable to Obama, one post that seemed to be favorable to the Republicans (yours), and all the rest that expressed an opinion said either Obama sucks, or both parties suck.

      If you're looking for partisans to rhetoric with, you're on the wrong site. The most powerful bias here is not left or right, but "judge them by their acti

  • by Coolhand2120 ( 1001761 ) on Thursday September 30, 2010 @06:18PM (#33753706)
    You always see people on the left trying to censor political opinions using laws with misleading fuzzy titles like "fairness doctrine". This is nothing more than a tool to silence the opinions of people the government does not agree with. It reminds me of a saying I once heard:

    Conservatives are afraid you don't understand what they're talking about, liberals are afraid you do.

    The 1st amendment was first for a reason, and when you start censoring anyone by fiat, and by an unelected political appointee no less, you've opened the flood gates for abuse of power. Why is it that the democrat party and the federal government no longer have a clearly defined line, but rather act in each others own best interest. For example the EPA: The EPA rules by fiat and is a political ally of the democrat party. The EPA does what it can do make sure democrats do well in the polls because the EPA - a branch of the government mind you - knows that when democrats are elected that more money and power will flow into the EPA apparatus. And that's just the EPA. All agencies in the government, unless specifically labeled 'conservative' are run by the democrat party. Many of the agencies are so large that they have taken on a life of their own and operate as a company that seeks power and glory rather than to serve the greater public good. And to that end they know that a vote for democrat is a vote to increase funding, scope and power of the federal government.

    The only problem is that the government does not produce anything. All the government can do is tax people who do produce something and spend it on something else, filtering through a never-ending maze of bureaucratic red tape, nepotism and corruption and when it finally reaches its destination, only a fraction of what was taken from the taxpayer actually goes towards the problem in the first place.

    No, really, I'm going somewhere with this.

    I'm sure there are tons of people who want to rip holes in my argument and tell me that the EPA and the federal government aren't part of the democrat party. Whatever, you have your right to be wrong. Others will say that there is a military industrial complex that is beholden to conservatives. That's wrong too. You have privately owned defense contracting companies that actually produce something. Even if what they produce rubs you the wrong way, they are a hell of a lot more productive than the EPA. They are also private citizens and corporations of the US that are totally within their rights to lobby congress to their own best interests as it is every citizen and corporations[group of citizens] right in this country. Besides all that, Boeing isn't run by the RNC and doesn't really care who is running the country so long as they keep buying death rays from them they are happy to do business with whatever party is in the WH. I'm sure they are very happy with Obama because Obama means more sales for them. And it's hardly controlled by conservatives.

    In the supreme court, the last bastion of conservatism. The two ideologies play out here with one side, the conservative side claiming to be strict constitutionalists. And the liberal side of the court is more happy to say the constitution is a living document [wikipedia.org] that can be reinterpreted from time to time as the language changes - in direct contradiction of the framers. I'm not saying that the court shouldn't revisit old decisions and undo precedent, Dred Scott v Sandford [wikipedia.org] for example. But we must adhere to some rule of law. Long ago liberals stopped adhering to the constitution and only bring it up as a weapon to strike out at their opponents with and is something to be ignored while it suits their agenda.

    How can you say that the changing meanings of words in a language changes the sprit of the contract that was written long ago? When you

What this country needs is a good five cent ANYTHING!