Mirror, Mirror, On the Wall … Crooks & Liars Spots Himself in the Wa Monthly story about Kos …

Markos makes an interesting statement about “yours truly” in the piece and I’d like to share a quick thought:

“Crooks and Liars is like the second biggest liberal blog now, and it’s all video clips. And Friendster—I have a Friendster account, I understand in the abstract that people would like the web to connect it in a certain way, but I don’t get it, I don’t understand how it works.”

Since we live in such a visually stimulated culture, I understood how powerful it would be to bring that medium into your homes … Writing a paragraph about Tom Tancredo making a weird reference about blowing up Mecca isn’t as powerful as actually hearing him say the words. …. Read all

John Amato (C&L’s founder), you do have the video thing down great. But, you deserve more credit. Your blog is not just about video clips. You also provide commentary, and it’s often quite astute.

What’s In A Number? …

In Media Girl‘s new piece — “On readers, page views and Daily Kos: What’s in a number, anyway?” — she notes that the new article about Kos incorrectly says he has 3.7 million readers per week, when the figure 3.7 million actually refers to page views. … Read all

Froggy Ruminates, “Waiting for the ‘Civil Libertarians’ to shift fire onto Clinton” …

Froggy Ruminations and I are on opposite sides of the political fence but, last May, he wrote me a beautiful e-mail thanking me for my diary in which I stood up for the Navy SEALs who were wrongly prosecuted for the death of an Iraqi detainee actually killed by CIA “operatives.” Froggy was once a Navy SEAL, hence his nickname. (My May 2005 piece was “Bush Chortles While Navy SEAL Is Hung Out to Dry.”)

Froggy is mostly a fire-breathing ‘winger. I’m not sure what he’s writing about here, so I present it in the hopes you’ll comment:

With all the whining and bitching going on about President Bush’s use of NSA intercepts of communications between foreign terrorists and US persons, it is worth noting a very important parallel from the Clinton Administration. In the conduct of the FBI investigation into the espionage conducted by Aldrich Ames of the CIA, Clinton and AG Reno authorized a completely warrantless search of Ames’ Arlington, VA home. I have no idea why Clinton and Reno refused to seek court approval for the search of the home of a US Citizen and government employee located within the Continental US. … What is most amazing to me is that a search of this nature did not initiate the “fruit of a poison tree”argument by his legal team.

As a former federal agent, even one with border search authority, I would have been sued for a Constitutional tort if I entered the home a drug dealer without a search warrant. Not to mention the exclusion of any contraband seized from the raid….Read all

Note: Froggy writes more about his experiences as a customs officer.

Eating Words: Blackwater Threatens Defamation Suit Against A Journalist …

Writes Another Day in the Empire:

… Blackwater expects [journalist Mike] Whitney to contact all websites, blogs, and forums on the internet that reposted his article–or even made reference or linked to it—and ask them to remove the offending remark, a completely unreasonable request. Mike’s retraction runs as follows:

A few months ago I wrote an article “The Second American Revolution” that was published on a number of web sites. The article contained the following paragraph: “Blackwater’s record in Iraq is a grim testimonial of criminal excess. They have been directly connected to the abusive treatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib, the random killings and brutalizing of Iraqi civilians, and the extortion of information from resistance suspects.”

These claims cannot be substantiated and although other security firms have been accused of serious criminal conduct, Blackwater has not. Blackwater was not involved in the Abu Ghraib scandal at all and I seem to have completely muddled my facts. … Read all

Did he lick Blackwater’s boots too? Isn’t that a fine kettle of fish? I wonder what’s really up with that.

Quandaries …

From Our Beautiful Friend Diane, Seasons Greetings On Her Blog, Village Blue

… I have completely enjoyed this past year getting to know so many people from all over the world and now you have become part of my extended family. … Read all

And, as Maureen Dowd said sincerely to Andrea Mitchell today, “Merry Christmas!”

P.S. As former federal prosecutor Elizabeth de la Vega writes via TomDispatch, let’s all “Shoot the Moon and Forget about the Bell Curve.” Tom says, “It’s a way to think about 2006 with hope (of a sort) and even perhaps grace.” Good.

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