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Hillary Clinton Email Scandal Could Pose Major Impediment to her Presidential Campaign

Despite the recent rise of Bernie Sanders former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remains the front-runner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. Clinton who this year joined the race for the country’s highest political office has been dogged by an investigation into her email server she used while in her cabinet position. The inquiry to access the candidate’s emails arose from the continuing investigation into the terrorist attack at the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya. Read More…

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Should the Newtown 911 Tapes Have Been Released?

Sandy Hook RibbonIt has been almost one year since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary.  The events of that day will forever be ingrained into the psyche and memories of the American public.  The shooting sparked outrage over current, lax gun laws, pleas to finally tackle mental health issues, whether the school should be reopened (it has since been decided to be demolished) and now the latest battle is over the release of the harrowing 911 tapes.  Read More…

Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner Take on Paparazzi

Halle Berry and Jennifer GarnerOn Tuesday, celebrities Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner appeared at a legislative hearing in California to urge passage of a bill that would increase penalties against paparazzi that “harass” the children of celebrities.  They argue that the paparazzi can take as many pictures of them as they like, despite their chagrin, but when it comes to their children they should exhibit restraint in the best interest of the child.  Read More…

Stephen Colbert mocks cable news (07/31/2013)

Stephen ColbertRegular readers of Real Talk by now know that I am a fan of Stephen Colbert.  I think he is hilarious.  While I was watching yesterday’s episode of “The Colbert Report” I quickly realized that I had found my video of the week.  In the clip Colbert mocks cable news for their over-exuberance over a lunch between Former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and President Obama.

Hope you enjoy the video! Read More…

Stephen Colbert mocks Asiana Airlines and KTVU

Stephen Colbert in Iraq

Stephen Colbert in Iraq (Photo credit: The U.S. Army)

This week’s “viral video of the week” is brought to you by comedian Stephen Colbert.  Colbert is the host of a comedy show on Comedy Central.  For those who don’t know part of his comedic bit is that he pretends to be a conservative pundit.  Colbert has a great way of making his point while being funny.

In this video he mocks Asiana Airlines and KTVURead More…

Rolling Stone Magazine Cover of Suspect #2 Draws Backlash

Rolling Stone

The Rolling Stone magazine is under fire from irate readers after placing Suspect #2 on the cover of their August issue.  Suspect #2 is the lone survivor from the terrible Boston Marathon bombing this past April.  Along with a photo of the bomber the magazine posted a headline: “The Bomber.  How a popular, promising student was failed by his family, fell into radical Islam and became a monster.”

More than 6,000 people have left comments on the legendary magazine’s Facebook page; most of them denouncing the decision.  The hash tag #BoycottRollingStone is currently trending on Twitter.  The magazine prides itself as one that not only covers music and entertainment, but politics as well.  The feature story apparently provides “new” details on what went wrong in his life. Read More…

Is Edward Snowden a hero for leaking the “secret” NSA government program?

Edward SnowdenThe past couple of days I have been asked to convey my opinion on Edward Snowden.  Many would like to know my thoughts on his actions and his future.  By now most Americans know of the NSA scandal.  Snowden leaked to the British newspaper “The Guardian” that the American government was collecting phone records for millions of Verizon Wireless cell phone users.  From my understanding, and from what has been acknowledged by President Obama, the NSA has lists of phone calls and the duration of each call.

The government does not however state the user’s name next to the phone record.  If there are suspicious phone calls being placed with phone numbers from known terrorists to U.S. residents then a court order can provide more information as to whom the number belongs to; otherwise the identity of the user is protected.  The president and members of Congress (many who have known of the program) vehemently believe its constitutionality.  They do not believe that it infringes on a citizen’s right to privacy.  Read More…

NSA seizes phone records of millions of Verizon customers

NSA eagle comicYesterday, the English newspaper “The Guardian” broke the story that the National Security Agency (NSA) collects the phone records of millions of Verizon customers on a daily basis.  The U.S. government has not confirmed the report.  The practice of wire-tapping and intruding into a citizen’s right to privacy began with the Patriot Act issued under the Bush administration.  After the September 11th attacks, the government did what it deemed necessary to thwart terrorism.

The Bush administration was endlessly criticized by Democrats, including then-Senator Barack Obama in this intrusion of privacy.  Senator Obama promised during his first presidential campaign that he would not only put a stop to such practices, but his administration would be the “most transparent” in political history.  Someone online wondered if he meant that the American people were going to be “the most transparent” in American history. Read More…

Pentagon Papers Lawyer James Goodale: Attorney General Eric Holder should resign

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder listens to a question at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in WashingtonJames Goodale is an attorney with an extraordinary career.  Among his career achievements his most notable courtroom victory was before the United States Supreme Court when he defended a journalist’s First Amendment Right.  Goodale chronicles the exhilarating trial in his most recent book: “Fighting for the Press: The Inside Story of the Pentagon Papers and Other Battles.”   Early last month I posted my review of the book.  I was honored (and still I’m) to have received a copy of the book before it’s early May release.  I highly recommend reading the book.

Goodale recently posted an article on the Daily Beast in which he calls for U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to resign.  Goodale believes Holder should resign over the James Rosen case.  Holder signed off on a search warrant which in essence treated James Rosen, a FOX News reporter, as a criminal.  Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, a State Department adviser, leaked to Rosen information about North Korea’s nuclear plans.  Rosen is under investigation under the Espionage Act.  The government believes (at least they implied by investigating the reporter) that Rosen committed a crime of mal-intent.  However, the act should only be considered for the leaker and not the reporter who obtained the classified information. Read More…

What’s the deal with journalism? I don’t get it!

The other day, I woke to a CNN news alert on my phone that the Department of Justice had confiscated materials from the Associated Press. As a journalist, I was fuming. Such action contradicts our very constitution!! So how do these things happen?

As a philosophical matter–what gives the government the right to take into it’s possession the property of individual reporters or news outlets?–the answer has been clear: nothing. But these things happen, more often than we hear about them, everywhere in the world. Here it’s a matter of press and public outcry. We understand the importance of the so called “free press” (never mind how often the media is vilified in political discourse). Read More…