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The White House Crowd Control Manual

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the sliencing-free-speech-silently dept.

Censorship 162

quizzicus writes "The Washington Post writes today about a sensitive White House document detailing how to screen for, silence, and remove protesters who show up at the President's public appearances. Obtained by an ACLU subpoena in the Rank v. Jenkins case, the Presidential Advance Manual (PDF) is dated October 2002. It lays out strategies such as searching audience members at the door for hidden protest material, strategically placing 'rally squads' throughout the crowd to intercept and shout down hecklers, and forcefully removing dissenters who cannot be squelched. The manual advises, however, that staff should 'decide if the solution would cause more negative publicity than if the demonstrators were simply left alone.'"

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The Slashdot Crowd Control Manual: (3, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329001)

Nothing for you to see here. Please move along.

Re:The Slashdot Crowd Control Manual: (3, Funny)

splutty (43475) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329035)

I think you intended that as "-1 Troll", which would be the prefered CC method.

Re:The Slashdot Crowd Control Manual: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20329085)

That joke sucks every single time.

Re:The Slashdot Crowd Control Manual: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20329147)

Yeah, but at least our whining sucks more.

Out of sight == Out of mind (3, Insightful)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329051)

From TFA:

But that does not mean the White House is against dissent -- just so long as the president does not see it. In fact, the manual outlines a specific system for those who disagree with the president to voice their views. It directs the White House advance staff to ask local police "to designate a protest area where demonstrators can be placed, preferably not in the view of the event site or motorcade route."


Not only does Chimpy not see it, but no one else sees it, either, thanks to the complicit corporate media.

If this was a Peter Sellers movie, it would be hilarious. Unfortunately, it's not a movie. We're actually living this.

What's really entertaining (5, Interesting)

Moryath (553296) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329725)

is that while those who insist on hating Bush think this is news, this has been "crowd control" tactics for pretty much every political rally or protest that has ever existed.

Democrats regularly strip off shirts and try to confiscate signs that are critical of them at their rallies. Try bringing a counter-sign to one of the Muslim KKK / "Pro-Palestine" events sometime, and see what happens. If you're lucky, they'll just try to cover your sign with theirs or grab it from your hands and rip it up and stomp on it; if you're not, you'll be physically attacked for being a "Jew."

I took a sign asking Obama what he thinks of the racial supremacist [blogspot.com] views of his "church": when I held it up at his rally, it lasted about 30 seconds, then one of his "staffers" pointed at me and sent cronies into the crowd to take it from my hands and rip it up. Seems they don't want the truth about him pointed out.

Re:What's really entertaining (3, Funny)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329905)

void republician_retort(point accusation_of_fascism){

if(exists(democracts.spurious_similarity(accusatio n_of_fascism))){

    play_up(democracts.spurious_similarity(accusation_ of_fascism));

}
else{

    play_down(accusation_of_fascism);

}

if(exists(democrats.main_candidate.opportunity_to_ discredit(accusation_of_fascism))){

    democrats.main_candidate.discredit(accusation_of_f ascism)

}

    fox_news.discredit_democrats();

}

Re:What's really entertaining (3, Insightful)

baldass_newbie (136609) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330217)

Democrats regularly strip off shirts and try to confiscate signs that are critical of them at their rallies.

Or just beat the ever living crap out of them. [ijot.com]

Re:What's really entertaining (0, Offtopic)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332865)

If you read the link you pointed to, you'd see that the alleged assailants were members of a Teamster's local that supported Republicans:

Judge Meehan is the son of the man who headed the Republican Party in Philadelphia for at least the last 30 years until his death several years ago. Judge Meehan's brother now heads the party. Organized Labor has supported Meehan and the Republicans through campaign contributions and other donations and in return Meehan and the Republicans has supported organized labor. The strongest of all labor leaders in this city is, you guessed it, John Morris, President of Teamsters Local 115.

So taking their (alleged) actions as evidence that Democrats beat the crap out of people, is problematic.

But yes, there are nutjobs on all sides who have no respect for free speech.

Personally, I usually feel heartened by right-wing counterprotestors. As much as I appreciate the fact than an argument is not responsible for those who believe it, the frothing-at-the-mouth nutjobs who make up most of the turnout for pro-war counter-rallys at anti-war marches make a strong gut-check that I'm on the right side.

Re:What's really entertaining (2, Interesting)

plague3106 (71849) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330223)

Seems like a legal case to me. What legal right gives one citizen the ability to take property from another citizen, because they disagree with the view?

Re:What's really entertaining (2, Informative)

xappax (876447) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330723)

When the president does it, it's not illegal [landmarkcases.org] .

Re:What's really entertaining (1)

plague3106 (71849) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331195)

Hmm, doesn't really matter what the President (then or now) thinks its illegal or not, it is.

Re:What's really entertaining (1)

djasbestos (1035410) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332747)

Not to mention commit assault. Even touching someone is technically assault, and if they act forcibly and are not designated security personnel, I'd think they could be charged.

Re:What's really entertaining (2, Informative)

Anarke_Incarnate (733529) | more than 6 years ago | (#20333277)

No, touching someone is technically BATTERY not assault. Assault is the threat of an action. Battery is the unlawful touching of another person.

Re:What's really entertaining (2, Insightful)

morari (1080535) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330545)

I took a sign asking Obama what he thinks of the racial supremacist [blogspot.com] views of his "church">

From the link that you provided:

We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian . . . Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain "true to our native land," the mother continent, the cradle of civilization.

Now that is interesting. Unapologetically Christian blacks that remain true to their native land...

Re:What's really entertaining (4, Informative)

RevHawk (855772) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330665)

As a white member of the denomination Barack is part of, and someone who has attended many services, known many of it's clergy (including head pastor, and been friends with many members, I can say the church he belongs to is anything but racist. Yes, they are strongly afro-centric. But white people CAN attend (and are welcomed warmly), as well as join. So before going off, why don't you seek to understand WHAT they say and believe? Or is tossing out insults and soundbytes just too easy and convenient?

Re:What's really entertaining (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20332125)

*pulls the tinfoil hat down low and pokes out two eyeholes*

Go home. Christians are not welcome here.

Re:What's really entertaining (1)

Catmoves (1136147) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331343)

How very sad. Political opposition stopped by what can be described as "goon squads". I have the feeling that history is repeating itself again and again. I am aware that comparisons are, most times, odious but I can remember as a kid that we were taught about Herr Hitler's rise to power in the Nazi Party in Germany. Because freedom of speech and freedom of protest were only given lip service in 1930's Germany, the Nazi's were allowed to use whatever methods they chose, when silencing hecklers and protestors during Nazi Bund oratory. Once peaceful protest is silenced by force, a fearful quiet falls over those who have opposing views. The phrase "When I am the Boss..." comes into actual, real life play and humankind resorts to a "I'd better keep my mouth shut or I'll just disappear" fear of what can happen to the protester. It is something to dreaded. Not something one should simply bow his/her head to and say "everybody does it. We could not be heard if we allowed people to disagree verbally."

Re:What's really entertaining (4, Insightful)

posterlogo (943853) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332787)

lol. instead of acknowledging the merits of this particular topic, you try and make comparisons. the good old "democrats did it too!" whine. when it's a democrat president, we SHOULD hold them to the same standards. RIGHT NOW, however, the buck stops with Bush. This crowd control is a pathetic attempt to stifle alternative, constitutionally protected view points. clearly you're on the republican side. i'm on the american side.

Re:What's really entertaining (1)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332809)

Democrats regularly strip off shirts and try to confiscate signs that are critical of them at their rallies.

So some Democrats suck too. That's no defense of the Bush teams' tactics.

You do realize that being anti-Bush doesn't mean being a Democrat, right? (Indeed, given Congress's track record, it would seem that being a Democrat means being mildly pro-Bush.)

one of the Muslim KKK / "Pro-Palestine"

The Ku Klux Klan accepts Muslims now? You're not making sense.

I took a sign asking Obama what he thinks of the racial supremacist views of his "church"

Nothing at the link you provide [blogspot.com] supports the charge that the church is "racial supremacist". Please, explain.

That said, if your story about your sign being taken away and destroyed is true, that is unacceptable behavior whether engaged in by Democrats or Republicans. However, we don't know whether Obama backs such actions or whether it was a single overzealous staffer; in the case of the Bush plan, it's an official policy of the White House

Re:What's really entertaining (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20332943)

> So some Democrats suck too. That's no defense of the Bush teams' tactics.

For a republican, it always is a defense. Always.

Re:Out of sight == Out of mind (1)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329941)

Not only does Chimpy not see it, but no one else sees it, either, thanks to the complicit corporate media.
Remind me again, why is our media granted so much privilege?

After reading through the manual my opinion is: (5, Funny)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329089)

The manual is [redacted], otherwise [redacted].

[redacted]

I think I should finish this long post by summarizing my opinion about the [redacted] manual which is: [redacted].

Re:After reading through the manual my opinion is: (4, Insightful)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329193)

I thought you were making a clever, but nonspecific, joke. Then I actually looked through the PDF of the manual.

You gotta wonder...if an open admission that this administration is actively working to squelch the First Amendment rights of American citizens wasn't redacted, what was?

Re:After reading through the manual my opinion is: (2, Informative)

Dausha (546002) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332885)

"You gotta wonder...if an open admission that this administration is actively working to squelch the First Amendment rights of American citizens wasn't redacted, what was?"

What the Court said could be redacted, most likely to ensure operations of the Secret Service that safeguard the President are keep off /.

You should remember that in cases like this, the Secret Service exerts a great deal of influence. Their job is to protect the President and First Family (and political candidates in the right context). They are zealous in that endeavor. How they operate should be protected as a national secret to protect the Office of the President (not necessarily the man himself).

What you should ask yourself is this: since this is an "open" President, what about other recent Presidents (e.g. Clinton, Reagan, etc.)? You assume malice, when you could just be reading the way things have been done for a generation. Presidents complain (after they leave office) that they are increasingly isolated from "the real world" by their security detail and staff. This isn't a Bush-only issue.

Re:After reading through the manual my opinion is: (4, Insightful)

Kymri (1093149) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329427)

That would be really funny if (literally!) nearly 90% of the document wasn't redacted.

Since it IS the cast that about 90% of the document is redacted, it is merely very, very sad.

Tagged Republican? (3, Insightful)

faloi (738831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329115)

Because Democrats [counterpunch.org] would never do that, amirite?

Re:Tagged Republican? (2, Insightful)

PJ1216 (1063738) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329277)

Pointing out one event doesn't carry the same weight as an administration that apparently does it at every speech and who wrote a manual on the subject...

Re:Tagged Republican? (5, Insightful)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329339)

So because one side did it, it justifies the other side doing it? Please.

Free speech zones, cant wear shirts, hire people to protect against the protesters, make people remove shirts to see if they have anything underneath someone might not like, etc. goes against what this country was founded on.

You can't be president and say you are protecting free speech at a rally, when at the rally you have people arrested for wearing a shirt with a red cross through your name.

And now I have to type this paragraph because of all the bush trolls. When kerry did the plus unbutton your shirt to make sure you don't have another bad shirt underneath disgusted me just as much.

Re:Tagged Republican? (1)

faloi (738831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329421)

Nah, I'm not saying that two wrongs make a right. Just that it happens on both sides, neither is free from blame. The whole political process right now is just...sickening.

Re:Tagged Republican? (1)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329471)

Can't argue with you at all. I was watching the south park episode last night when the kids have to decide between the giant douche and the turd sandwich. It's what it has all come down to now a days. You have to be super rich to run, and if you are super rich you can not possibly represent the middle class or poor.

Elections will now boil down to : which lobbying group behind the candidates do I like/hate the least. lol

Re:Tagged Republican? (2, Insightful)

Some_Llama (763766) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332949)

"Just that it happens on both sides, neither is free from blame."

Then instead of pointing the finger at the other side when it DOES happen.. you should be lining up with your fellow Americans and decry the practice in whole. Otherwise it just makes you look like you are defending the practice of one side because "the other side does it too".

Then when democrats do the same thing you can decry that as well and not look a hypocrite.

This goes for all partisan bickering.. we need to point out EVERY infraction no matter which "side" is perpetrating the offense and show both parties that we won't stand for it.. just because they can't work together on issues doesn't mean WE can't.

Re:Tagged Republican? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20329811)

Free speech zones, cant wear shirts, hire people to protect against the protesters, make people remove shirts to see if they have anything underneath someone might not like, etc. goes against what this country was founded on.
That's right. This country was founded on the right to wear shirts and bare arms.

Re:Tagged Republican? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20330105)

goes against what this country was founded on.

You have no idea what you're talking about. Please read a history book about the foundation of the United States. "Freedom of Speech" does not give you the right to say anything you want(aka defamation and direct threats). It does not grant you an audience and it does not grant you the right to interrupt, disrupt and disturb private events (even if said event is open to the public).

No one will throw you in jail for speaking against someone/thing else in a newspaper, in the streets, or in your own private event. No one will throw your ass in jail for wearing a T-shirt opposing something. They might kick you out of the building, but they're not going to lock you up, try you for treason, and then execute you on the public square. You know, the repression most of Western Europe had once upon a time and the U.S. WAS founded against! Or the repression you can still be seen in many parts of the world like China, N.Korea, Saddam's Iraq, Iran, etc. to various degrees.

Please, get a clue.

Re:Tagged Republican? (1)

pi_rules (123171) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330831)

When kerry did the plus unbutton your shirt to make sure you don't have another bad shirt underneath disgusted me just as much.
But... I bet you voted for one of them.

Re:Tagged Republican? (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329437)

Do you respond to attacks on Bush with "but Clinton"?

If you do, FOAD.

Re:Tagged Republican? (4, Informative)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330005)

Know who else put six million people in a permanent free speech zone?

The But But! corollary: In any discussion of traditional political malfeasance, someone will find a similar but much less egregious offense by someone slightly less conservative and claim equivalence, and therefore, that no offense has taken place at all.

Feel free to add "Democrats" to a gun-grab or MPAA pandering, but the Republicans own this kind of shit, and that ain't ever going to change.

nothing new here (2, Informative)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329135)

People have spoken of this issue since Bush was even campaigning. Are you surprised that they actually had a manual for it?

Re:nothing new here (1)

manowar821 (986185) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329341)

Am I surprised that they have a manual detailing how to put a muzzle on free speech? Yes, yes I am.

LOL JUST KIDDING

I'd have written the manual, too... (2, Insightful)

halivar (535827) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329153)

And I think a Democrat president, if he we smart, would have a manual on it, too. What is the big deal?

Just another inflammatory, irrelevant article from kdawson. This article belongs in politics, not YRO.

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (2, Insightful)

mroberts47 (1073802) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329323)

Exactly, I am sure presidents (not to mention other heads of state) have all had polices that dictate what do do on this subject. I would do it, you would do it, and I am sure most of the world would do it. Honestly, no story here.

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329385)

If this explanation eases the burden on your conscience, fine.

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (1)

mroberts47 (1073802) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329465)

A burden on my conscience? I don't have a burden on my conscience and I am unsure why you would think I do.

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (2, Insightful)

phoenixwade (997892) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329599)

And I think a Democrat president, if he we smart, would have a manual on it, too. What is the big deal?

Just another inflammatory, irrelevant article from kdawson. This article belongs in politics, not YRO.
You are right, he (or she) would. It would shock me to find out that every President since LBJ DIDN'T have a manual or an equivalent set of written orders. After the numerous sets of really negative (from the seated administrations point of view) protesters showing up in a crowd since the Vietnam era.

And you're right, it does belong in a different category that Your Rights ONLINE. It don't think it's inflammatory or irrelevant, though (except that it's not relevant to online rights).

As to what the big deal is; In the overall scheme of things, or looking back in history probably not much. But, the current administration has taken extraordinary measures to keep information out of the public eye. In that light, the release of the manual itself, rather than the details of it, was a fairly big deal.

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (1)

RevHawk (855772) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330697)

Umm. White House Crowd Control Manual. Nobody said Democrats don't do it, did they? Did they? No? Of course they do. It's still wrong and disgusting. We yell about Bush because he's there and doing it NOW. What, do you want us to preemptively bitch at Hillary for doing the same thing before she even does it? Jeeze...

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20331167)

That's just it. It simply doesn't happen when there's a Dem in the office. Whatever ills are occurring in the US Government they simply cannot get critized with alarmist propaganda about it UNTIL there's a Republican at the helm.

If you're critical about a Democratic president it's always an "attack" while if it were Republican president it's always "persuit of truth".

That said, there's nothing that will ever be done about it, I think. It's the kind of hyporacy that makes it hot for two girls to kiss and gross for two men. :)

Re:I'd have written the manual, too... (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331015)

I'm with you. I would wager that most security companies around the world have manuals on crowd/riot control.

Really, though, even within the politics section, I ought skip summaries altogether that have "Posted by kdawson " under the title. When we have a Democrat president, though, I may have to check them out anyway to see if we get the same kind of inflammatory articles about the Executive branch.

White House CC (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20329159)

OK. Sap "Circle". "Star" gets sheeped, "Square" gets banished, "Diamond" gets freeze trapped, and we all DPS down "Skull".

Got it?

Re:White House CC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20330273)

You've got it all wrong.

"Moon" gets sheeped, "Red X" gets sapped, "Blue Square" gets frost trapped, "Pink Diamond" gets banished.

Well, okay, Not all wrong - we do DPS down the skull.

Re:White House CC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20331327)

Come to think of it, I just realized this 5-man doesn't seem to have a healer or a tank. This could be a problem.

Re:White House CC (1)

zoward (188110) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330357)

Damn, where's my mod points when I really need them?

Re:White House CC (2, Funny)

batquux (323697) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331819)

You spent them in a different tree.

Re:White House CC (1)

d0rp (888607) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331251)

Thats exactly what I was thinking when I first read the headline.

Well done.

Re:White House CC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20331271)

Shouldn't we be fearing "Skull" as well? My 'lock doesn't like getting beat up, y'know.

Re:White House CC (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332159)

With that much CC, who is tanking?

Re:White House CC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20332337)

Whoever has aggro...
So, the mage, naturally.

Re:White House CC (1)

OiBoy (22100) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332801)

Pally AoE tanking...CC is for pansies

How low can you go? (2, Insightful)

crackerjack911 (49510) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329195)

The manual advises, however, that staff should 'decide if the solution would cause more negative publicity than if the demonstrators were simply left alone.
With the President's approval ratings in the 30% area, why would they even care about negative publicity? Might as well throw some of those pesky dissenters into Gitmo while you're at it. Hell, start sending kids to war. I'm pretty sure the last 30% of the nation is so brain dead they would probably be behind anything the president said.

Re:How low can you go? (2, Informative)

faloi (738831) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329259)

30% is still better than Congress [pollingreport.com] right now. There's room to slide.

Re:How low can you go? (2, Insightful)

DavidTC (10147) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329795)

Not really. The GOP have unwavering people supporting them, and it's unlikely, at this point, that anything would make them change their minds.

Whereas the low ratings of Congress are due entirely to the fact that Democratic voters do not view the Democrats in Congress anything but scorn, because said Democrats are apparently fucking morons who don't have the slightest idea how to end a war. (Hint: You all could literally stay at home 24 hours a day and the war would end because it would become unfunded. You don't even need to do any active work at all.)

The GOP supporters, however, have no such discernment WRT to the actions of their leadership, (The ones that do, duh, have left already.) and would continue to support their politicians no matter what they do, be it invade Iran, withdrawal all troops from Iraq, or nuke Canada. If some stuff shows up and personally affects enough people, like the upcoming collapse of the economy and all their houses being foreclosed on, maybe those people will change their minds, but it seems a long shot at this point. (Changing their minds does. A recession is almost inevitable.) The GOP approval ratings may slowly slide down a percentage point or two every year, but they are not going to go down much more than that.

Re:How low can you go? (1)

Pale-Horse-Rider (713087) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330211)

You have an interesting view of how to end a conflict. Let's put this in perspective: two people are engaged in a brawl with one another for quite some time. Your suggestion for ending the brawl is to have one of these people just stop fighting. Unfortunately, when that guy stops fighting, the other guy won't. Suddenly, the guy who turned pacifist is left wondering, "Where did I go wrong?" while his opponent beats the snot out of him for letting his guard down. Now, we can argue over the justifications or the fault in starting Iraq till the cows come home, but that has nothing to do with how a conflict should be ended. Whether or not the war was initially justifiable, we are now involved in a lasting conflict. On a different note, I also find it rather ironic that your suggestion for halting the war in Iraq is for everyone to just stop working, and yet you seem to be worried about an impending economic crash.

Re:How low can you go? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20330459)

Your analogy fails. Two people in fisticuffs are in close quarters. If the U.S. packs up and goes home, there's a major land mass and an ocean between the two combatants.

I don't know about you, but I'm not real scared of the 31st Amphibious Camel Brigade.

And if they start boarding planes to the U.S., kindly explain what about our presence in Iraq is preventing them from doing it now, short of the convenient presence of 160,000 targets (and, sorry, I don't support the use of the Zap Branigan handbook on combat technique when it comes to utilizing U.S. soldiers)?

Re:How low can you go? (1)

Pale-Horse-Rider (713087) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330727)

There's much more to a conflict than combat. If we simply pick up and leave, we allow economics to be rebuilt and alliances to be reformed. Pretty soon, instead of dealing with a battered opponent who just has a helluva lot of heart, we start dealing with a strong group of opponents that can choke us from overseas through economic sanctions and strategic alliances. Which is to say, pretty much what we did with Germany after World War I.

Re:How low can you go? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20330863)

Yea, you're going to have to provide some serious evidence that any major economic powerhouse could "choke us economically" if we left Iraq, otherwise I'm going to have to just dismiss that claim out of hand.

Re:How low can you go? (1)

Pale-Horse-Rider (713087) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332593)

Absolutely! Our occupying forces leave Iraq. Soon afterward, Iran takes advantage of the chaos and anarchy to ally with its neighbor, helping to rebuild Iraq right where we left off. These two powers quickly amass and send troops into Kuwait. Suddenly, Iran controls the vast majority of oil in the Middle East. After that, extreme sanctions on oil exports to the US and its staunchest allies causes economic havoc. Not only would the US be hit hard as a direct result of the sanctions, but indirectly as well, since the economic turmoil in our foreign business partners would be reflected back upon us.

Re:How low can you go? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20333293)

None of that is evidence, it's just speculation on your part, and it's poor speculation at that which flies in the face of established facts:

Iraq is a comparatively small source of our oil imports [doe.gov] . While losing all of the oil from Iraq would most likely have an impact, there is no reason to believe it would be anything even remotely close to catastrophic.

I reject your entire argument and retain my original position: there is no substantial or direct risk to the U.S. in withdrawing from Iraq.

Re:How low can you go? (1)

xappax (876447) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331013)

Let's put this in perspective:

Yes, let's. Two people are engaged in a debate on Slashdot. One of them points out reasons why we should withdraw from Iraq, but the other one disagrees and finds those facts unfavorable to his/her argument. So instead of legitimately countering the argument, he/she makes up a different story in which the facts solidly support continuing to fight. "See, since it would be bad to stop fighting in this case I made up, therefore it's bad to stop fighting in the completely different case of the Iraq War!".

Using metaphors to argue a complicated and nuanced issue is like using metaphors to argue a complicated and nuanced issue.

Re:How low can you go? (1)

Pale-Horse-Rider (713087) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331205)

Firstly, your premise is faulty. No reasons were given for a withdrawal. The post to which I replied simply stated that Congress had failed to effect a withdrawal. Since there was no specific points of argument to counter, I was forced to counter the broad point of argument-- that being the necessity of a swift withdrawal from Iraq. Secondly, the case of the metaphor is no different than the situation in Iraq. Whenever opponents are engaged in a conflict, the cessation of aggression on the part of one participant does not magically cause the conflict to end. We can choose to pick up and stop fighting if we so desire, but that does not mean our enemy will follow suit.

and the pale horse you rode in on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20332793)

you are Pinyan's ghost

Re:How low can you go? (5, Insightful)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331775)

The problem isn't primarily a military issue. It's a technological and political one, and military actions will not solve the problem. The key problem is that our country is helplessly dependent on oil. If we were not critically dependent on the oil, we would not care what happened in the Middle East. (Consider - Darfour is at least as screwed up as the Persian Gulf area, but that's a humanitarian problem and not a political/military one - for us - because we are not critically dependent on any resources there.) But, because we have allowed ourselves to become dependent on the resources there... we meddle, supporting thugocracies so long as they keep the oil flowing, etc. This gives motivation to the Islamist fanatics there. (Note: motive is not the same thing as justification. Homicide investigators look for motive when solving a murder, they don't look for justification. The Islamist lunatics are not justified in attacking innocents by our actions, but they are in part motivated by them.)

Since the problem isn't a military one, a military solution alone will not work. Military action is certainly justified as part of the overall strategy (e.g. in Afghanistan, now sadly neglected) but can't be the only means we use. The ultimate solution is to greatly reduce our dependency on oil.

This doesn't have to involve austerity programs and such. We could go nuclear - not just nuclear power plants, but nuclear rockets - e.g. this one [nuclearspace.com] (the good tech stuff starts in section 7). With that, we can lift a thousand tons into orbit in a completely reusable and non-polluting craft that even eliminates not only its own nuclear waste but also waste generated on Earth. Using those, we can put up solar-power satellites that send their energy down to Earth in the form of microwaves. (If you've ever played Sim City... forget it. It doesn't work that way, it can be done very safely with large margins of safety. See here [wikipedia.org] especially the section on "Safety".) With the lower launch costs of nuclear rockets, we can make the U.S. a net energy exporter, in time. This has plenty of military applications, as well. Space is the ultimate "high ground" and a dominant U.S. presence in space should have obvious strategic benefits.

Of course, at the same time we can work on more efficient techniques for utilizing the oil we do need. Cars with better mileage (improving our overall fuel efficiency by less than 3mpg would eliminate our need to import oil from the Persian Gulf), more efficient means of generating and using fertilizers, a bit of thought about how we use plastics, etc. Even better, we can sell the technology we develop to other parts of the world - further reducing world demand for oil, driving the price down. The lower the price of oil, the less funds the Islamist fanatics have to work with, and the less of a threat they pose. (Reducing oil prices also impacts people like Hugo Chavez, as a bonus.)

(Not that, realistically, Islamist fanatics pose an existential threat to the United States. They can harm us, certainly, and even cause a relatively large amount of damage, sometimes. That's not the same thing as posing a threat to the existence of the United States. For perspective, more than 30 times as many American citizens have died in traffic accidents since 9/11 than have died in 9/11, Afghanistan, and Iraq combined.)

Re:How low can you go? (1)

Kelbear (870538) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332423)

While I like the idea of leaving Iraq, a "just go home" plan has a load of consequences unaccounted for. Just like the "kick out Saddam" plan didn't turn out so hot.

The devil's in the details, and we /are/ immersed in Iraq. It takes time and money to take everything back, and it has to be paced as such that critical functions remain in place until the last departure. We've still got a ton of private contractors, non-combatants, and unspent money tied up in government contracts that need to be extricated.

Some might also want to leave infrastructure accomplishments intact. The infrastructure was blown to hell, then partially rebuilt, it'll take time to make sure what's been rebuilt doesn't just fall apart once you're gone or the country will pretty much be ruined not once but twice. So the republicans screwed them, then democrats screw them too? It's a responsibility that most of the country didn't want, but it's one that we have nonetheless.

There are some who didn't want the war, and want it to end, but don't want to compound the mistakes that have already been made.

Re:How low can you go? (0, Troll)

Pale-Horse-Rider (713087) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329775)

...and I'm pretty sure 70% of the nation is so brain dead they would probably be against anything the President said.

Wow! Blanket generalizations are easy to make! Throw in a couple pop-culture references to Guantanamo and Iraq, and now you can justify any negative sentiment about the President without having to rely on any legitimate argument!

Re:How low can you go? (1)

rob1980 (941751) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329957)

Just make sure you throw in a "Chimpy McFlightsuit" for good measure.

Re:How low can you go? (1)

RevHawk (855772) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330731)

Umm, no. Actually, the President had an INCREDIBLE approval rating after Sept. 11 as our mighty cowboy led us in a war or terror.... What percentage of Americans supported the invasion of Iraq at first? A TON. I'd guess at least 75%, likely more. So...No, generalizations are not THAT easy.

Really? (1, Insightful)

Sunburnt (890890) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329237)

The manual advises, however, that staff should 'decide if the solution would cause more negative publicity than if the demonstrators were simply left alone.'

Yes.

Easy decision.

Slashdot = News for Political Activists (0, Offtopic)

Alexpkeaton1010 (1101915) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329345)

Where is the tech in this article? Are they zapping the protestors to the Alien mothership?

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (1)

manowar821 (986185) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329503)

This is a politically charged time we live in, this type of news and discussion gets EVERYWHERE.

In BF2 chat? Politics Diablo 2? Politics Gold Fish help Forums? POLITICS

Hell, I was watching some porn the other night, and the actor and actress started going at it. And by going at it, I mean arguing about whether or not the USA is a democratic republic or despotism. (I agree with the chick, because she said it was despotism. Also, she was friggin hot)

You see? You cannot get away from it, everyone wants to talk about it. I don't consider that a bad thing, either.

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (1)

russ1337 (938915) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329721)

If you don't mind my asking, and hypothetically speaking... where would one find pr0n with such content.....?

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (1)

pedestrian crossing (802349) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330497)

If you don't mind my asking, and hypothetically speaking... where would one find pr0n with such content.....?

Read just about anything by this [wikipedia.org] dude.

He would write pages and pages of awesome pr0n, and about the time that everyone had done about everything (and I mean everything) to everybody, they would take a break and talk heavy-duty politics and political philosophy. Then, after a few pages of that, back to it.

I think he just wrote the pr0n to get people to read his philosophy, but man he was one sick dude...

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (1)

russ1337 (938915) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330705)

yeah, i was kidding, but just goes to show... be careful what you wish for... and that there are some pretty weired fetishes out there....

I guess it just proves how much this comic strip [xkcd.com] rings totally true....

Bush Appologist Alert! (1)

FatSean (18753) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329505)

Will you next tell me that Democrats and Republicans are both corrupt and bad for our nation...which you recetnly determined in 2006?

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (3, Insightful)

DogDude (805747) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330303)

Slashdot is "news for nerds". There are a lot of other kinds of nerds and nerd interests than just tech stuff (which I happen find incredibly boring). There are biology nerds, mechanic nerds, plumbing nerds, etc.

Re:Slashdot = News for Political Activists (1)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332345)

I see this questions on every story that's NOT a techie story. I think it's even on the story about the release of D&D 4th Ed...

In Bushunist America (3, Funny)

Steeltalon (734391) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329373)

Crowd Controls you!

I've seen this before... (1)

sathran (1098719) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329433)

Same as the Warlock CC method: Kill the crowd!

tag: redacted (2, Informative)

Nimey (114278) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329479)

What's the point of releasing this document if half of it's been censored?

Re:tag: redacted (2, Informative)

Nimey (114278) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329557)

Make that rather more than half. Pages 36 to 66 have been censored.

Re:tag: redacted (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 6 years ago | (#20329595)

And 68 to 103.

I feel un-enlightened.

Why Blame Bush? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20330329)

Why are the trolls here blaming the current White House for this document? It was published in 2002. That means they started working on it long before. Remember who was president then?

The Secret Service are nonpartisan equal-opportunity thugs. They'll protect presidents of any ideology and round up and haul away protestors of any ideology.

Don't worry, they protected the last Clinton and will protect the next Clinton with equal zeal. Please remember to protest with equal zeal next time around, too.

Re:Why Blame Bush? (1)

The Wicked Priest (632846) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332847)

It doesn't mean any such thing, unless you have a better reason to assert that than "the gubberment is the slowz!!one!". If it came out in 2002, it certainly is a Bush administration document.

Only ~1% of manual released! (1)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330393)

Of 103 pages, there's only a little over a page of actual content that was not redacted.

Was this a /. test to see who would actually read the referenced document?

well duh... (2, Insightful)

band-aid-brand (1068196) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330615)

The last thing the secret service works is chaos while the president is vulnerable up on a stage. Our country allows you to protests pretty much any way you want to an time you want to as long as it doesn't endanger other people. I'd call a bunch of left wing crazies shouting about how the government caused 9/11 in a crowd of right wing war hawks is going to cause some issues.

When I visited ground zero earlier this year a group of conspiracy theorists showed up and started marching through the crowds of people with signs screaming about how 9/11 was an "Inside Job". Fortunately the police showed up and had them move to a designated area to protest. This isn't Big Brother censoring peoples dissenting views, is the police trying to prevent a massive street fight from breaking out between the people who feel that ground zero is a place to remember those lost and the people who are concerned with shouting their views at everyone within earshot.

Re:well duh... (2, Interesting)

Quila (201335) | more than 6 years ago | (#20330821)

This isn't Big Brother censoring peoples dissenting views, is the police trying to prevent a massive street fight from breaking
Valid general point, except that one of the explicit criteria for removing or minimizing the protesters is whether the media can see or hear them.

As far as protesters mixing with the loyal, their instructions are to send loyalists out to the protesters in order to drown them out. So this policy isn't about safety in a mixed environment. Plus, no matter how disruptive the protesters are, the orders are to leave them alone if confrontation would result in net negative publicity (where's the safety angle in that?).

Notice that within the document, security threats are handled differently -- the Secret Service handles those. These operatives deal with protesters who are, by their own definition, not a security threat, but "likely to cause only a political disruption."

This isn't about safety. This is about controlling what America sees on the news.

Re:well duh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20331231)

Smart thing to do is dress nice, sit in the crowd and say very nasty things about bush until you get pummeled by young RePubs. OK, not smart for you, but a riot/bashing by college student jack booters would do more harm than some someone wearing a "no bush" t-shirt who is only going to be described in the press as a loud mount radical.

And by the way zip tie your legs to the chair so they can't easily haul you away.

Re:well duh... (1)

Quila (201335) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332057)

Funny thing is that for the most part I am politically against what these protesters would be saying and the leftist ideology they represent.

But rights mean nothing unless you're willing to apply them equally to those with whom you disagree.

Re:well duh... (1)

band-aid-brand (1068196) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332851)

There is a time and place for protesting, and during a presidential speech is not it. Like it or not, he is in charge (more or less) for the next few years and deserves his chance to get his points across as do his opposition. Let them hold a press conference. Let them inform the media they are going to protest at X time on Y date on against Z subject. If the media wants to come they will, if not, then maybe opposition groups need to rethink their strategy. What would happen if they didn't do this? Speeches and rallies would dissolve to a shouting competition and nothing would get done.

I recall an incident where Harold Ford Jr. ambushed Bob Corker http://www.wmctv.com/Global/story.asp?S=5568809 [wmctv.com] and tried to derail his press conference. There are ways for people to get their point across and times when protesting is appropriate (demonstrations on public property etc.). Trying to out shout the president during a press conference or speech is not the way these things need to be done.

Lessons Learned (1)

AnotherHiggins (925608) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331661)

To any of you who may claim that this has been going on forever:

When I was in college, I went to a Bush (41) speech while he was campaigning for reelection.

A decent portion of the crowd - not a majority, mind you, but dozens of folks - were chanting "4 more months! 4 more months!"

A bunch of loyalists tried to shout down the protesters, but failed.

Whether you like the president or not, I like the idea that when he addresses a public crowd, it is an honest-to-goodness cross section of the population (minus any crazies with guns, obviously). These days anyone heckling the President would be forcibly removed from the venue.

If only Bush (43) could have learned from his father about Iraq.... But I digress.

best bit: USA! USA! (2, Interesting)

kisrael (134664) | more than 6 years ago | (#20331997)

From the PDF:

The rally squad's task is to use their signs and banners as shields between the demonstrators and the main press platform. If the demonstrators are yelling, rally squads can begin and lead supportive chants to drown out the protesters (USA! USA! USA!) As a last resort, security should remove the demonstrators from the event site. The rally squads can include, but are not limited to, college/young republican organizations, local athletic teams, and fraternities/sororities.

I'm not sure which part I find less wholesome, the almost self-parodying use of yelling "USA! USA! USA!" or the idea of importing the local football team and/or frat to act as rhetorical muscle.

Manuals are fine. (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332065)

I see nothing wrong with laying out official rules and guidelines to your staff on how to handle crowds especially hostile ones. You don't want people "improvising" and screwing up big time.

If the actual methods or rules are bad then sure, it's cause for concern.

So how about cut down the "oh noes they have a manual to tell them what to do!", and try to concentrate on what they are being told to do AND what they actually do?

What the First Amendment means to me (1)

merc (115854) | more than 6 years ago | (#20332895)

I say means to me because this is not a legal interpretation or viewpoint; simply my personal viewpoint.

To me, the right to freedom of speech also includes the freedom not to listen to speech. I don't believe others' rights should be impuned, and I'm happy if mine aren't as well. However I don't believe that it means I'm required to supply others with the platform by which they may express themselves. They have the right to talk, I feel that I have the right to listen or not listen.

We live in a country where we can pretty much say whatever we like about whomever we like (with reasonable boundaries and limitations of course), but nothing that I can imagine requires anyone to have to endure or listen to it (even Bush).
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