Sunday, May 1, 2011

News of Osama's Death Explodes on Twitter; Check Out Osama's Diggs on Google Maps

At 10:25 p.m., Keith Urbahn, the chief of staff for former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld, tweeted “So I’m told by a reputable person they have killed Osama Bin Laden. Hot damn.”
That is all it took for the twitterverse to explode.

Different ways new media used in announcement of Osama's death:

Just an hour after President Obama address the nation, Osama's hiding place can be found on google maps.

Phillies fans reaction to Osama bin Laden's death uploaded to youtube

President Obama speech was streamed live on the White House website, while those on facebook could engage in a live discussion.

People shared their thoughts via facebook, including former president George W. Bush:
"Earlier this evening, President Obama called to inform me that American forces killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of the al Qaeda network that attacked America on September 11, 2001.  I congratulated him and the men and women of our military and intelligence communities who devoted their lives to this mission.  They have our everlasting gratitude.  This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001.  The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message:  No matter how long it takes, justice will be done."

Videos and photos of people celebrating at ground zero hit the web right after Obama's address.
                                              HuffPost's Rob Fishman has provided the following image from Ground Zero

Obama's entire speech, along with a full transcript, is already available for viewing.

Considering how quickly this story spread, I'm extremely surprised they were able to keep this thing from us for a week!


Steelers Running Back Defends Bin Laden via Twitter:

Rashard Mendenhall, the Steelers running back, sparked controversy when we expressed his frustration with celebratory behavior of Americans regarding Osama bin Ladens death.
1. "What kind of person celebrates death? It's amazing how people can HATE a man they have never even heard speak. We've only heard one side...
2. "@dkeller23 We'll never know what really happened. I just have a hard time believing a plane could take a skyscraper down demolition style
3. "We'll never know what really happened," Mendenhall wrote. "I just have a hard time believing a plane could take a skyscraper down demolition style."


Monday, April 4, 2011

First Barack Obama 2012 "Ad"

President Barack Obama officially announced his campaign for re-election.
"Today, we are filing papers to launch our 2012 campaign."

Just kidding. That was not the ad put out by the Obama campaign, but rather it was an ad created by the National Republican Senatorial Committee.  (Obama did officially announce his run for president in 2012 - check out his website).

If you were just listening to the ad, you would assume that you were listening to an ad by the Obama campaign.  However, if you watch it you will see just how clever the NRSC's ad is.

The ad starts with saying that Obama has brought Americans together, while video of tea party rallies play in the background.
It continues with saying that Obama is going to end our dependence on American energy - by pledging billions on Brazilian oil - showing Obama meeting with current Brazilian president, Dilma Rousseff, holding up a soccer shirt signed by the Brazilian soccer team with former President Lula,  and kicking around a soccer ball.
While discussing the "great challenges of our generation," pictures and videos of Obama golfing, hanging out with Paul McCartney and the Jonas Brothers, signing a bracket for the 2011 NCAA Tournament are shown.

In case you didn't catch that this was a spoof, the ad ends with Obama riding a flying unicorn leaving behind a rainbow trail.

I guess it's campaign season.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Facebook Finally Shuts Down Page Calling for Third Intifada

I'm sure many of you have heard of the Facebook page: Third Palestinian Intifada - الانتفاضة الفلسطينية الثالثة.

After pressure from pro-Israel groups and many different events and causes on facebook calling for founder Mark Zuckerberg to remove the page, Facebook finally took down the page early this morning.

The group calling for the Third Intifada, even picked a specific date in which they urged people to take to the streets and  begin an uprising.
As the page is written in Arabic, here is a translation of part of their message:
Countries neighboring Palestine will begin to march to Palestine on May 15, after the marches of neighboring states, soon after all Islamic countries will begin to march. Our time is close. Palestine will be liberated and we will liberate it. Our goal now is to reach millions of subscribers to this page before May. Arise, please publish the page in every place. Onward, Palestine.
The first Palestinian intifada was in the year 1987
The second Palestinian intifada was in the year 2000
And the third Palestinian intifada:
The group understanding the power of social media, perhaps in light of the revolution in Egypt, told followers to "Copy our link and put it in your profile, and publish it in every picture and video and pages and everywhere."

Some comments left by group members were hateful, and they incited violence.  One example: “The hour [of redemption] does not come until the Muslim fight the Jews and even the stones and trees say, ‘O Muslim, a Jew is behind me, so kill him.’”

Facebook had previously said that they were monitoring such comments, however, they did not agree to remove the page saying, "While some kinds of comments and content may be upsetting for someone – criticism of a certain culture, country, religion, lifestyle, or political ideology, for example – that alone is not a reason to remove the discussion. We strongly believe that Facebook users have the ability to express their opinions, and we don’t typically take down content, groups or Pages that speak out against countries, religions, political entities, or ideas.”

Last time I checked, a page inciting violence, calling for the death of Jews and a specific date to liberate Palestine would qualify the page for removal.

ADL National Director Abraham Foxman, quoted in, said "We should not be so naïve to believe that a campaign for a ‘Third Intifada’ does not portend renewed violence, especially in the current climate that has seen a dramatic increase in rocket attacks from Gaza, the brutal murder of the Fogel family in the West Bank, and a terrorist bombing in Jerusalem."

While I am glad Facebook has finally agreed to shut down the page, I am extremely disappointed it took this long.  The group managed to attract over 340,000 followers before its removal, and since then, another page has gone up in its place.  When I started this blog post, around 15 minutes ago, the new page had 318 followers.  As I conclude, it has 351.

Hopefully Facebook will get it right this time, and shut down this page immediately.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

MSNBC, CBS, ABC, NBC and NPR Ignore Death Threats Made to Wisconsin Republicans

Continuing with my post from last week, and our class discussion from this week, many of the main media outlets in this country have yet again left out an important news story.

Everyone has heard of the protests/riots (I guess choosing one of these words presents a bias) that have broken out in Wisconsin. However, unless you watch Fox News you would have missed a major development in the story.

Wisconsin Republican lawmakers have received numerous death threats, yet no major news network has covered this story besides Fox.  You can check out the story here.
Even the Democratic lawmakers themselves have made threatening comments to Republican lawmakers.  Rep. Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) told Rep. Michelle Litjens (R-Winneconne) "You are f–ing dead."

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Veterans Shield Family From Westboro Protestors

After the Supreme Court's decision to allow Westboro Baptist Church members to protest at military funerals, a group called "The Patriot Guard Riders" has started forming a human barricade to shield mourning families from the protestors.

At military funerals, Westboro Baptist Church members hold up signs that read things like, "Thank God for 9/11" and "Pray for More Dead Soldiers."  At the funeral of Cpl. Richard Bennett, a 25 year old fallen soldier, a protestor was quoted saying, "They should have left his carcass right on the ground."

At the funeral, the Patriot Guard formed a human barricade with their bodies, bikes and American flags so mourning family members and friends would not have to see the protestors.  The sound of their bikes and the patriotic music they play drown out the Westboro members outrageous and hurtful chants.

While there has been a lot of media coverage of the Westboro Baptist Church protests and their cruel signs, the only mainstream news source I found this story on was FOX Nation.  Why haven't there been more stories about the Patriot Guard and other honorable attempts at counteracting these crazy protestors?

Friday, March 4, 2011

Huckabee vs. Portman

"Mike Huckabee SLAMS Natalie Portman For 'Child Out Of Wedlock'" - Huffington Post
"Mike Huckabee slams pregnant Natalie Portman as bad role model for having a baby 'out of wedlock'" - NY Daily News 
"Mike Huckabee Rips Natalie Portman Over Out-of-Wedlock Pregnancy - AOL News
"Huckabee Slams Natalie Portman For Out-of-Wedlock Pregnancy" - New York Times
"Mike Huckabee Slams Single Mothers, Especially Natalie Portman" - Forbes

These are just a couple of headlines regarding the comments Gov. Huckabee made about Natalie Portman having a child out of wedlock, while on The Michael Medved Show on February 28.

Just by reading these headlines (and lets face it, most people don't bother looking past this point), it would be safe to assume that Gov. Huckabee made some sort of nasty comment about Natalie Portman's pregnancy and lifestyle choices. However, what the Governor was actually commenting on was different than the headlines suggest.

Gov. Huckabee was asked what he thought on Portman's pregnancy.  He responded, 
You know Michael, one of the things that's troubling is that people see a Natalie Portman or some other Hollywood starlet who boasts of, 'Hey look, you know, we're having children, we're not married, but we're having these children, and they're doing just fine.' But there aren't really a lot of single moms out there who are making millions of dollars every year for being in a movie. And I think it gives a distorted image that yes, not everybody hires nannies, and caretakers, and nurses. Most single moms are very poor, uneducated, can't get a job, and if it weren't for government assistance, their kids would be starving to death and never have health care. And that's the story that we're not seeing, and it's unfortunate that we glorify and glamorize the idea of out of children wedlock.
You know, right now, 75 percent of black kids in this country are born out of wedlock. 61 percent of Hispanic kids -- across the board, 41 percent of all live births in America are out of wedlock births. And the cost of that is simply staggering.

Gov. Huckabee was trying to make a more general statement about the issue of single motherhood in this country. He was suggesting that while celebrities, like Natalie Portman, can afford to hire help and they have no financial worries, most single mothers do not have such a luxury. Gov. Huckabee's comments should have induced a much larger discussion on both single motherhood and teen pregnancy - both large issues today. In fact, according to a NY Daily News poll, so far 59% of voters believe that Portman "is sending the wrong message to young women who look up to her." Instead, the media, yet again, turned the story into a scandal and chose headlines that would sell.

Justin Bieber and Snooki Go GaGa over Politics

A couple of weeks ago, The Weekly Standard, published a piece called, "Is Justin Bieber a Conservative?" It seems as though in an issue of Rolling Stones magazine, Bieber shared more than just dating life.

Bieber talked about everything from abortion ("I really don't believe in abortion," Bieber says. "It's like killing a baby?" How about in cases of rape? "Um. Well, I think that's really sad, but everything happens for a reason. I guess I haven't been in that position, so I wouldn't be able to judge that.") to health care ("You guys are evil," he says with a laugh. "Canada's the best country in the world. We go to the doctor and we don't need to worry about paying him, but here, your whole life, you're broke because of medical bills.").

Another celebrity who had a few things to say about politics was none other than Snooki from the Jersey Shore.

John Mccain responded to Snooki via twitter saying : "@Sn00ki u r right, I would never tax your tanning bed! Pres Obama's tax/spend policy is quite The Situation. but I do rec wearing sunscreen!"

What about Lady Gaga's message to the Senate regarding DADT:

Why would Rolling Stones even bother asking Justin Bieber about his political views? How about Lady Gaga using her celebrity status to ask for the repeal of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy? What do you think about celebrities and sharing their political ideologies?