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Sunday, August 23, 2009

An email from the White House - and a lie.

August 13, 2009 was an interesting morning.
It’s the first time I have ever received a direct e-mail from the White House.

The interesting thing is that it came only days after we here in the Jolly Rogers news-room, used the White House’s new “snitch” line to inform on the questionable activities of Mickey Mouse.

You see, we were concerned for Mickey because he began to display some non-citizen attributes. We felt that he had moved from “thoughts to words and from words to actions,” and therefore should be brought to the attention of the White House (or the Ministry of Love).

Or maybe we informed on Ben – of Ben and Jerry’s. I must confess, all the informing at has left me a bit confused. Like poor Winston in George Orwell’s masterpiece, 1984, I just can’t keep it all straight.

Anyway, after that awkward confrontation between Major Garrett and the Whitehouse Spokesman Robert Gibbs, in which Gibbs danced around the question as to what the origin of the e-mails were, the official take on the whole situation the next day was that OTHERS had placed the e-mail lists in the Ministry of Love’s system. A kind of internet sabotage which THE PARTY had no knowledge of.

But like the long, torturous interrogation and reeducation of Winston by O’Brien, we are slowly arriving at the truth.

According to the White House, my e-mail address was just one of many which were provided to a private communications company in Minnesota, named GovDelivery, which calls itself the leading provider of “government-to-citizen” communication.

So, the previous claims by the White House Spokesman, that the mass-email of which I was a part, was really just the work of “Outside Groups,” was totally false. In fact, you might say it was a lie.

However, if it was GovDelivery who was provided my e-mail, why, when and how? And maybe a better question is – are they sure that’s where it came from? Because in reviewing a list of Federal GovDelivery clients, the White House is oddly absent. Here are the GovDelivery clients actually on the list:

Dept. of Homeland Security
Dept. of Health and Human Services
Dept. of Labor
Dept. of Transportation
Dept. of Justice
Dept. of Treasury
Dept. of Defense
Dept. of State
Dept. of Agriculture
Dept. of Commerce
Independent Agencies
Dept. of Energy
Dept. of Veterans Affairs
U.S. Courts
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Federal Reserve System
Major Federal Portals.

Nope. No White House – not even a listing for the Ministry of Love. So, if they’re not on the list of GovDelivery’s clients, then are they doing business through another name – an alias, perhaps? Or maybe, the White House is not quite as important as DOA or DOE or the Office of Radiation (underneath Independent Agencies), and thus don’t need to be listed. And if they are a client - how much are they spending to distribute emails from Axelrod to people like me?

Or maybe there’s another explanation entirely.

Is it possible that by informing on Mickey Mouse, we inadvertently placed ourselves on a list of “helpful citizens” which the White House was cultivating for use in a computer network scheme to help push their dying health care reform and other projects through the legislative process and onto the backs of the citizens?

Or is it possible that we are now on a different kind of list – maybe the kind of list Winston found himself on after the “single involuntary thought.” Perhaps by informing on a cartoon character – or the ice cream man, we have indelibly been marked as troublemakers who need watching – who need re-education. Perhaps the Jolly Rogers at is now on the list of Proles who have been judged to be “capable of becoming dangerous.”

Remember from your George Orwell, dear reader that it “was not desirable that the proles should have strong political feelings. All that was required of them was a primitive patriotism which could be appealed to whenever it was necessary to make them accept longer working-hours or shorter rations. And even when they became discontented, as they sometimes did, their discontent led nowhere, because being without general ideas, they could only focus it on petty specific grievances.”

Perhaps GovDelivery never sent that e-mail at all – and it instead came directly from the White House’s own list, gathered the weeks previously, using the data collected from the now infamous “Flag” address – the snitch-line which allowed regular citizens to inform the Ministry of Love about any “fishy” information.

Perhaps GovDelivery is just another group to blame for the White House’s collection and use of personal data.

Rep. Darrell Issa, (R-Calif.) has dispatched a letter to the White House asking for “truth.” I don’t think the current administration is capable of delivering on that particular request.

Rep. Thaddeus McCotter of Michigan reportedly called this “another ominous chapter in the administration’s rabid campaign...” And perhaps it is.

But there’s one thing for certain. I feel a little like Winston in this – when O’Brien walks up on him from behind that first time, and begins to speak to him of inconsequential things.

“Even while he was speaking to O’Brien, when the meaning of the words had sunk in,” wrote Orwell, “a chilly shuddering feeling had taken possession of his body. He had the sensation of stepping into the dampness of a grave, and it was not much better because he had always known that the grave was there and waiting for him.”


All you Proles want to feel better about things - watch this...

A town-hall video

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