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Jen Sorensen | Fun With False Equivalence / CagleCartoons.com

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Glenn Beck Targets Frances Fox Piven

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  • In Beck's twisted telling, it is activists like Piven—not the militias of the right—who threaten Americans' safety.
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  • Frances Fox Piven Is Way Tougher Than Glenn Beck
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Editors, The Nation

On the afternoon of January 6, Frances Fox Piven, a distinguished professor, legendary activist, writer and longtime contributor to this magazine, received an e-mail from an unknown correspondent. There was no text, just a subject line that read: DIE YOU CUNT. It was not the first piece of hateful e-mail Piven had gotten, nor would it be the last. One writer told her to "go back to Canada you dumb bitch"; another ended with this wish: "may cancer find you soon."

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Piven was unnerved but not surprised. These are not pretty e-mails, but they appear positively decorous compared with what has been written about her by commentators on Glenn Beck's website, The Blaze, where she's been the target of a relentless campaign to demonize her—and worse. There, under cover of anonymous handles, scores of people have called for Piven's murder, even volunteering to do the job with their own hands. "Somebody tell Frances I have 5000 roundas [sic] ready and I'll give My life to take Our freedom back," wrote superwrench4. "ONE SHOT...ONE KILL!" proclaimed Jst1425. "The only redistribution I am interested in is that of a precious metal.... LEAD," declared Patriot1952. Posts like these are interwoven with ripples of misogyny, outbursts of bizarre anti-Semitism and crude insults about Piven's looks (she's actually a noted beauty) and age (she's 78).

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Sat, Jan. 22, 2011: Extreme right 3, American people 0

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  • “There ain't no clean way to make a hundred million bucks,” Ohls said. “Maybe the head man thinks his hands are clean but somewhere along the line guys got pushed to the wall, nice little businesses got the ground cut from under them and had to sell out for nickels, decent people lost their jobs, stocks got rigged on the market, proxies got bought up like a pennyweight of old gold, and the five percenters and the big law firms got paid hundred-grand fees for beating some law the people wanted but the rich guys didn't, on account of it cut into their profits. Big money is big power and big power gets used wrong. It's the system. Maybe it's the best we can get but it still ain't any Ivory Soap deal.” ....Raymond Chandler in "The Long Goodbye," published in 1953.
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  • Thank Olbermann
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  • The Disappearance of Keith Olbermann
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Jim Fuller, Things We're Not Supposed to Say

If you liked reading this article, consider contributing a cuppa jove to Evergreene Digest--using the donation button above—so we can bring you more just like it.

In one of those odd coincidences that we all walk into occasionally, I spent much of the afternoon of Jan. 21 going through notes, printouts and clippings with a view to writing something about the increasing and probably irreversible corruption of the corporate news media. Then I joined my wife for dinner and turned on “Countdown with Keith Olbermann,” who told us, without explanation, that it was his last show.

The strong but subtly phrased suggestion was that he had been forced out, given a buyout he didn't really want.

That was quickly confirmed by several reports on line, although details are still lacking.

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Thank Olbermann, Adam Green, BoldProgressives.org

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  • As you may have heard, last night (Friday, Jan 21) Keith Olbermann stunned viewers by announcing that it would be his last show on MSNBC.
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  • He thanked the 300,000 of us who successfully petitioned last November to get him back on the air. Details of the latest saga are still coming out, but one thing's for sure: Keith spoke truth to power and he deserves our immense thanks.
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  • Watch Keith's final sign off -- and then sign our "Thank you, Keith" statement today.
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The Disappearance of Keith Olbermann, Robert Parry, consortiumnews.com

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  • Keith Olbermann’s abrupt departure from MSNBC should be another wake-up call to American progressives about the fragile foothold that liberal-oriented fare now has for only a few hours on one corporate cable network.
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  • Keith Olbermann Issues Special Comment On Arizona Shooting: 'Violence Has No Place In Democracy'
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The Disappearance of Keith Olbermann

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  • Keith Olbermann’s abrupt departure from MSNBC should be another wake-up call to American progressives about the fragile foothold that liberal-oriented fare now has for only a few hours on one corporate cable network.
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  • Keith Olbermann Issues Special Comment On Arizona Shooting: 'Violence Has No Place In Democracy'
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Robert Parry,consortiumnews.com

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Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Thomas Sklarski

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Though Olbermann hosted MSNBC’s top-rated news show, “Countdown with Keith Olbermann,” he disappeared from the network with only the briefest of good-byes. Certainly, the callous treatment of Olbermann by the MSNBC brass would never be replicated by Rupert Murdoch’s right-wing Fox News toward its media stars.

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At Fox News, the likes of Bill O’Reilly, Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity have far greater leeway to pitch right-wing ideas and even to organize pro-Republican political events. Last November, Olbermann was suspended for two days for making donations to three Democratic candidates, including Arizona’s Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was wounded in the Jan. 8 shooting in Tucson.

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Keith Olbermann Issues Special Comment On Arizona Shooting: 'Violence Has No Place In Democracy', Keith Olbermann, Huffington Post

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  • Appearing on a special edition of "Countdown," Olbermann told his audience that "we need to put the guns down. Just as importantly we need to put the gun metaphors away and permanently."
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  • Giffords warned in March of ‘consequences’ to Palin’s violent rhetoric
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  • Psst: The death of public civility
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WikiLeaks Hasn't 'Leaked' Anything

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  • "If a single foreign national is rounded up and put in jail because of a leaked cable, this entire, anarchic exercise in "freedom" stands as a human disaster. Assange is a criminal. He's the one who should be in jail." --Joe Klein, Swampland (12/1/10)
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  • To treat Assange as a leaker when he is, in fact, a journalist is not only morally confusing, it's quite dangerous to journalists in general.
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Jim Naureckas, Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR)

Actually, Julian Assange didn't leak anything--he can't, because he didn't have access to classified documents. Someone (or someones) who did have such access leaked those documents to Assange's WikiLeaks, which, as a journalistic organization, made them available to the world, both directly and through other media partners.

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This distinction, which is widely ignored in commentary on WikiLeaks, is actually quite important, because the ethical obligations of a government official with a security clearance are quite different from those of a media outlet. An official makes a promise to protect classified information, and should break that promise only when the duty to keep one's promises is outweighed by the public interest in disclosing wrongdoing. Journalists, on the other hand, are not in the business of protecting secrets, and should have a general presumption in favor of informing the public unless disclosure would cause specific foreseeable harms. The two ethical situations are pretty much opposite.

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To treat Assange as a leaker when he is, in fact, a journalist is not only morally confusing, it's quite dangerous to journalists in general. If the government can declare Assange to be spy or a terrorist because he's published classified documents he's received, every investigative journalist who does the same thing is in deep trouble.

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