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A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+6 # Guest 2010-07-04 00:34
I have this sick feeling that Rahm Emanuel is calling the shots, just like Cheney did with Bush. I think that Obama is too overwhelmed to deal with him.
+6 # Guest 2010-07-04 01:11
"We are not the enemy here." Uh, yes you are! You can expose incompetence and that would be "bad". You could identify failures of those in charge and that would be "very bad". This administration says one thing and does quite the opposite. Preach transparency but allow none to be had. Our government does not want anyone to see how inept they really are. The people in charge will crow endlessly about all the great things they did. But these same people refuse to own their mistakes. The only way to hide mistakes is to forbid any scrutiny. Mistakes carry future punitive damages. If mistakes cannot be documented they did not happen. That is why BP is trying harder to sink the oil slick than to remove it. If it cannot be seen it does not exist. After this catastrophe is over, there will be a modern Bermuda Triangle in which travel into and exploration of, is forbidden. There is no constitutional right that guarantees your access to the truth if your government does not want you to know the truth.
+18 # Guest 2010-07-04 07:15
"We are not the enemy" This would be true if America were still America--that is, the land of freedom, responsibility, and transparency envisioned by Thomas Paine and other true patriots.

But that America died on December 12, 2000--the day that the Supreme Court coup d'etat implanted an unelected Oil Industry-sponso red Fascist regime in power for eight years. The Gulf catastrophe is the direct consequence of Cheney's secret deal with his oil-baron cronies to let them "regulate" themselves. And now we reap the bitter fruits of corporate fascism: a devastated ecosystem, a silenced and cowed media, and corporate thugs charged with preventing all the rest of us from seeing the horrific truth.
+4 # Guest 2010-07-04 11:36
In one matter after another, the US shows itself to be no more transparent than China: voter fraud in 2000 and 2004; unlimited spying on citizens in the name of national security; lack of access to Katrina and now BP's oil disaster. We need a citizen revolution. Today's government is owned by the corporations lock, stock and barrel.
+4 # Guest 2010-07-04 11:51
Remember when the Beatles sang "back in the US, back in the US, back in the USSR", implying that in the end there was not as much difference between the two superpowers as we assume?

If the Beatles were writing today they would not need to be as subtle as they were in 1969. Unlimited spying on citizens, "free speech zones" during supposedly democratic political conventions, trillions of public dollars given to unidentified banks with no accountability, right wing propaganda machines like Fox News who have 100 times the media firepower as struggling outlets like Reader Supported News, corporate-funde d fake grass roots headed by psychopaths like Dick (!) Armey whose sole purpose is to frighten and confuse the public into voting against its own interests (Medicare for everybody, unemployment benefits extension).

The US government and the corporations that own it have a record of information transparency that is on par with China.
-6 # Guest 2010-07-04 07:33
This is a difficult situation. I do believe that there is an honest concern for safety of untrained personnel as well as a concern of dangerous interference with the crucial work going on. Reporters can view a lot simply by going over these areas via helicopter. Regarding visiting treatment centers, as a patient, I would not want a reporter invading my privacy. If a patient wants to speak to a reporter, he can easily arrange to do so after he leaves the facility - saying whatever he desires - without violating the right to privacy of other patients.
+3 # Guest 2010-07-04 08:42
Obama needs to get control of our government and do what he promised about transparency. Apparently, he's been unable to shrug off the Bush era philosophy of deceit and dishonesty.
-6 # Guest 2010-07-04 09:43
"we are not the enemy here" because you cannot stick your nose any closer than 65 feet from an operation? What is wrong with using your high tech stuff, lens and audio recorders to record? Sounds like a whine to me.
Constructive reporting and criticism please.
+8 # Guest 2010-07-04 10:15
folks... the corporations took over US when rehnquist decided not to count the votes in 2000. that was the end of democracy in the US ! this is the entropy of the fossil fuel era -- BP which is apparently more powerful than the US government - the president's lack of leadership in this situation is appalling ! this is like setting off a 50 kiloton hydrogen bomb on the gulf and it will kill millions before its over. the next katrina will make sherman's march look like a girl scout picnic; imagine all the people on the gulf covered with chemicals, oil & sea like a flock of seagulls... and imagine all the land that this hard rain's gonna fall on, lying wasted for decades... this is pearl harbor and 9/11 put together america... wake up & smell the bP !!!!!
+2 # Guest 2010-07-04 11:14
They (BP & gov.) have done a crappy job of booming, so blatantly ineffective as to make it obvious the whole effort is just for show in BP's calculation.

Thad Allen has been faithfully repeating BP's line five minutes after they say it. He's done this so often that it remains to be seen what kind of bogus high-paying job they give him when he retires from the USCG.

Restricting access will make Winston's Smith's job easier in future by keeping the record to a manageable size. "What oil spill? When? Oh no, you are mistaken. See, there is no mention of a major event during that period."

There is very little daylight between government and corporation here. This would be true regardless of which pro-business party were in power at the moment.

Independence Day celebrates a rebellion that in large part was against the abuses of the British East India Company, a soulless corporation. Party on.
+1 # Guest 2010-07-05 11:05
He retired last week, believe it or not. But he is still in charge. What in the world is going on. This is true.
Google it. Thad Allen retired. Yep!
Something seems mighty fishy about it.
+1 # Guest 2010-07-05 11:10
Updated: 4:09 PM Jun 30, 2010

Admiral Thad Allen retires from the Coast Guard
Gulf Coast - According to a press release from the Deepwater Horizon Incident Joint Information Center, Ad miral Thad Allen has officially retired from the U.S. Coast Guard.
Posted: 3:06 PM Jun 30, 2010
+1 # Guest 2010-07-04 13:52
Photojournalist Georgianne Nienaber has risked felony charges to bring us some pictures from the Gulf. You can see them here:
+2 # Guest 2010-07-04 14:32
Our democracy cannot survive, nor can a free press, when the military reigns supreme, be it Thad Allen of the Coast Guard or the U.S. Air Force flying Predator and Raptor drones over the U.S.; the Army patrolling our borders and our lands; or the Navy restricting our seas.
Governments always defend against charges of incompetency, corruption, cronyism, and the like by relying on eliminating transparency, censorship, obfuscation, confusion and lying.
With enough pressure will the Coast Guard offer to embed reporters, who will then be in bed with them?
Dwight Eisenhower warned against the corporate-milit ary alliance.
We are seeing the true Evil Empire and it is us.
Let us protest and inveigh against this travesty.
+1 # Guest 2010-07-04 17:09
Leo Ray Ingle is right: "We are seeing the true Evil Empire and it is us."

22 years ago, this German hoped to encounter a honest, decent, united, benevolent country. What I found is liars, corrupt politicians, an ignorant, non-participato ry, distracted, selfish populace, fraudulent businesses, a bloated military, imperial attitudes, hypocritical churches... - in one word, a hell of a country.
0 # Guest 2010-07-05 22:48
WHAT is coming out of that hole in the ocean? Oil? Methane? VOCs? Asphalt? Wax?
How much is coming out? 1,000 Barrels? A million gallons? All we know is that there has been a huge black plume on TV for TWO MONTHS!
If it is valuable oil, and oil has been sucked up in the past with supertankers, why has it taken 2 months to bring one of these to the gulf? After the BUILT it?
Why did BP ignore all the warnings? Why was there a massive sell-off by GS before the "accident"? Why did Haliburton buy B&C one week before?
If we can invade a country b/c it might have WMDs, and torture prisoners w/o trial, why can't the US government enforce its order not to use COREXIT?
The stories we are being told are not logically consistent.
And now Carbon Credit Traders have the toschlagargumen t for global warming: Look at the black plume in the gulf! How convenient for Goldman Sucks.
0 # Guest 2010-07-08 15:24
Shame on you ... let the journalists do their jobs. Where is the proof of accountability and trust with this kind of rule.. ?