S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Recommending Investigative Journalists

Portrait of Glenn Greenwald -creator of Unclai...Image via Wikipedia
TPMMuckraker is one of the features at Josh Marshall's Talking Points Memo. Here's an interesting example of the kind of good work Zachary Roth does: "In Testimony, Rove Hedged On Role in Siegelman Prosecution" (8/13/09).

Glenn Greenwald's "Unclaimed Territory" is at (Image at left) He was previously a constitutional lawyer and civil rights litigator in New York. On of a number of collaborators on big investigative stories, he is incredible bright and passionate and tells it like it is without blinking. Here's a recent good post: "John Brennan's dangerous national security advice" (8/14/09).

ACLU Blog of Rights - "Because Freedom Can't Blog Itself" is from the American Civil Liberties Union. Posts are about capital punishment, civil liberties, drug law reform, closing Guantanamo, free speech, government spying, human rights, immigrant rights, LGBT rights, racial justice, religion & belief, reproductive rights, torture and abuse, Supreme Court, voting rights and women's rights.

Secrecy News is a publication of the Federation of American Scientists. The FAS Project on Government Secrecy reports on new developments in government secrecy and provides public access to documentary resources on secrecy, intelligence and national security policy. It is written by Steven Aftergood. Here's a recent good story: "Information Sharing as a Form of Secrecy" (8/17/09).

Emptywheel (Marcy Wheeler) writes at Firedoglake. Marcy is the very best at investigative digging, and is a widely respected member of the collaborators that do the major investigative work in the blogosphere. Here is a typically good piece of work (this time on Dick Cheney): "The crazy man above the garage" (8/18/09).

Spy Talk at CQ Politics is a daily blog by Jeff Stein. His slogan is "Intelligence for Thinking People." His post, "Interrogator:'Intolerance' Led to Torture" (8/11/09) is an example of his investigative work using good contacts.

The Washington Independent's "National Security" section features Spencer Ackerman, one of the most respected sources contributing regularly to the collaborative efforts mentioned above. His story, "U.S. Prepares for Questions of Legitimacy in Afghan Election" (8/18/09) is subtitled, "United States May Push Winner To Incorporate Losing Factions Into Government."

Wired: Threat Level is about privacy, crime and security online. David Kravets often writes the posts. This one by Kim Zetter is titled "Outspoken Privacy Advocate Joins FTC" (8/17/09). It is about Christopher Soghoian, an outspoken privacy advocate.

Suburban Guerilla is by former journalist Susie Madrack. Her slogan is "Keeping a jaundiced eye on corporate media." Featured as a moderator at the recent Netroots Nation Convention, she also writes for Crooks and Liars. Her post on Matt Taibbi's searing article on progressives and health care reform (8/18/09) is worth the read.

Marc Ambinder at The Atlantic is a prolific contributor to Twitter. I follow him. To conclude this post, this is one of his recent important linked articles, from which I quote fairly extensively:
A federal judge dealt a setback yesterday to the administration's ability to use information collected by intelligence agencies in Guantanamo prosecutions. In doing so, Judge John Bates weighed in on one of the core controversies of the cases -- the tension between the protection of intelligence sources versus the ability to make cases in federal courts. Bates told the government that it could not introduce evidence derived from a source whose identity cannot be disclosed unless there's some corrobarating evidence. And even if there is corroborating evidence, it'll be treated with a bit of suspicion.

Still, in this particular case, Bates rejected the habeas petition of detainee Shawali Khan . . .

To understand the ruling, understand this about the process: the government faces the burden of providing sufficient evidence that its initial detention was within the proper sphere of the government's detention authority as defined by Congress and the Supreme Court. If the government meets the burden, then the detainee has to convince the judge that the government is wrong.

. . . The government introduced at least three pieces of classified evidence where the identity of the source was not disclosed. If the court can't assess the reliability of an intelligence report because the source is shadowy, the government can't use the information to justify a detention.

Bates threw out four pieces of evidence out of eight. But the remaining evidence was sufficient to meet the detention burden.
Today's post is a roundup of some of the best investigative resources on the Internet. The way I collected them was by noticing how the authors references each others' work as they posted their stories. There is no better recommendation.

[Post date - 8/21/09]

My all-in-one Home Page of websites where I post regularly: Carol Gee - Online Universe
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