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What Does The “Israel Lobby” Have To Do With The Discovery Channel Hostage Taking?

What Does The “Israel Lobby” Have To Do With The Discovery Channel Hostage Taking?

I knew groups like Think Progress would be out there trying to paint the mentally deranged environmental activist who took hostages as a right-winger (because all extreme environmentalists are right -wingers, after all), and it did.

But not even Think Progress sunk to the level of PhilipWeiss, who used the incident to continue his anti-“Israel Lobby” jihad, The Israel lobby will be televised

How could Weiss possibly drag the evil Israel Lobby into this?  Well, when you are used to putting two and two together and getting five, anything is possible:

For the better part of an hour this afternoon, during the hostage crisis at the Discovery channel HQ in Silver Spring, MD, CNN featured commentary by Aaron Cohen, who was described as a trainer of Israeli commandoes.  Cohen repeatedly explained how Israel handles such situations. When the anchor asked whether the police could just wait till the guy wears down, Cohen said that in “terrorist” situations people don’t just wear down. So an advocate for one side in a terrible cycle of violence is given a platform on American television.

A nut takes people hostage, and all Weiss can think to do is use it for Israel and Israel-supporter bashing just because an Israeli appeared on television? Max Fisher very charitably called Weiss “work[ing] hard for this.”

I have to admit, I never saw the Israel Lobby angle to the story.  What exactly would have been the opposing viewpoint to the Israeli anti-terrorism expert?

Now I get it.  CNN should have had a terrorist on the show to balance the Israeli anti-terrorist expert.

Or maybe Philip Weiss could have filled in until a terrorist could be found and brought to the studio, with live field reports from Walt and Mearsheimer.

Oh, by the way, the answer to the headline question is “nothing.”

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Related Posts:
Israel-Firsters Unite
The “Israel-Firsters” Slur Rears Its Ugly Head

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Comments

You're over-complicating things. Weiss saw "parasitic humans" and his mind made the quick jump to "da joos".

There are no maps in Weiss World. They just decide where they want to end up, grab a bumper car and start crashing into everything and everybody. "If all those stupid people would just get out of my way…"

Interesting,

I don't accuse anyone of being mentally deranged, irrespective of whether they are left or right, pink or green, gunlover or pacifist, (personally I don't subscribe to the left/right paradigm, at all), unless I have personally sat down with them and heard their side of the story and made an impartial enquiry into their motives. I think thats what you call practicing what you preach when it comes to the principle of innocent until proven guilty.

How can anyone who considers themselves a person of reason, and impartial and a supporter of the rule of law, who knows the media are anything but impartial, and are always sensationalist, decide that the media are suddenly the paragon of virtue and disclosing all facts, and not playing 'If it bleads it leads', when it comes to someone whose views we may disagree with?

I don't know what you people in America consider the word 'honour' to mean, but for me it consists of practicing what I preach, in terms of the rule of law, and making impartial enquiries and considering people innocent — including of insanity — until proven guilty.

If James Jay Lee is the standard by which we measure insanity, then bombing Iraq and Afghanistan without any impartial 9/11 Enquiry, is way way more insane, is it not?

There are standards by which we measure insanity, and if we are to apply those of Thomass Szazz it would be the culture taht is insane, that encourages slave and cannon fodder breeding, on a finite planet with finite resources, and people who call themselves 'leaders' who think the earth is flat and resources infinite.

Your country used to be the voice of reason… give up this pathetic left-right behaiviour of teenagers who are not Americans, but members of your left/right political parties, both intent on destroying your nation asap!

I stood up for justice for Timothy McVeigh who had valid gripes, and did not get heard, and I will stand up for James Jay Lee.

‘As long as there is some possibility of getting results by political means, the chances that any political group or individual will turn violent are truly radically small, or maybe vanishingly small’ (Clark McCauley, Ph.D, Prof. of Psychology at Bryn Mawr College, in When Does Political Anger Turn to Violence?, by Benedict Carey, New York Times, March 26, 2010)

Wake up!

On the basis of that comment, I declare Andrea Muhrrteyn to be insane…or at the very least severely lacking in reasoning ability.

Interesting Vina,

And whose psychological theories shall you be applying, or you just another Stalinist, who knows absolutely zilch about psychology and prefers to label those you disagree with, with insanity labels?

When are you people going to grow some intellectual backbone and address someone's argument, instead of resorting to 'racist', or 'insane' labeling?

Next thing Gina will be informing us America was founded by a bunch of insane madmen, because she read one comment by John Adams about his defence for those others hated, because he practiced what he preached about innocence until proven guilty and making impartial enquiries?

We Americans have protocol regarding the protection and safety of it's citizens. And Laws regarding Freedom of Speech.

But, if you want to get a gun and strap a bomb on, and attempt to exterminate innocent American lives for any reason, political or otherwise, the consequence for doing so may end in your death. If the shot could be taken, it will and in this case it did.

Thank God, noone was hurt. Mr. Lee, is gone and whatever he personally thought went with him. It mattered nothing at all when we walked into that building attempting to commit a horrible crime.

Andrea…

You wrote When are you people going to grow some intellectual backbone and address someone's argument, instead of resorting to 'racist', or 'insane' labeling? .

Fair enough. Why not address Mr. Jacobson's argument instead of picking on a few descriptors you take issue with? IOW, you haven't addressed his argument.

And you started both your comments with "intersting…" which, in my considerable experience, indicates what you're really thinking is "whatever…" and is simply used as a supposedly thoughtful prelude before you go off on some tangent unrelated to whatever you found 'interesting.

And of course you end with "wake up", implying that because others don't see things as you see them it must because they're semi-conscious.

Andrea, did you read Lee's "manifesto"? Do you consider his ravings the "valid gripes" of a reasonable person? Even if you do (which is totally nuts IMO), do you think taking innocent people hostage (or killing 167 of them while blowing up a building) is an appropriate way of airing those "gripes"?

We are nowhere near the point of population saturation that would cripple the earth's resources. However, I have faith that if we began to do so at some point, humanity would find ways to solve those problems. Remember: there were people who at one time believed the streets would eventually become chin deep with horse droppings and tobacco spittle!

K,

I agree with Mr. Jacobson's argument that the Israel lobby has absolutely nothing to do with the Discovery Channel hostage taking.

I took issue with Mr. Jacobson, who is as far as I am aware, a Professor of Law, and this is a somewhat legal blog; that I was dumbfounded about how he could allege someone is 'mentally deranged' and 'nut', simply from reading a few news reports.

I'd imagine — of course I could be wrong — that he would wish to teach people critical thinking and impartial enquiry, not mobjustice 'descriptor' name calling. I have the exact same issue with liberals whose favourite argument is 'racist', who profess tolerance, except for those who disagree with them.

As for my choice of 'interesting'… actually I do find many things interesting. And interesting, to me does not mean whatever. If i wanted to say whatever, I'd have said whatever. In my culture we do not use one word when we mean another, perhaps your considerable experience is related to your or other cultures?

I mentored for about 5 years fulltime, under two unbelievable psychologists. I have seen people being accused of being 'nuts' and 'mentally deranged' by others who hardly could be bothered to make an impartial enquiry. I listened to those peoples life stories, to their passions, their pains, their fears and while I may not have made the same decisions, or chosen teh same paths, there is no way you are going to get me to accuse them of being 'nuts' or 'deranged', simply because I might find myself a nice little mobjustice follower group of fans, frothing at the intellectual uncritical thinking mouth, like dogs on rabies.

In my culture, we are of the opinion, that when you are filled with anger or hate for someone, or you passionately don't like their ideas, then is is extremely plausible you are incapable of providing a fair and impartial opinion on their behaviour. To be 'awake', i.e. not to be running on automatic pilot, dominated by your emotional hatred, is to confront your anger, deal with it, and/or admit to yourself and others, that your opinion is not impartial but loaded with unresolved anger.

All of us do so, in my culture what we value, is someone else who interrupts us and says 'Whoaa! Mate' (or however it may be done)… take a step back, you are on emoto-auto-pilot, not fully — critical thinking –awake.

I appreciate many of Mr. Jacobson's posts, I wouldn't follow the blog if I didn't find value. I do, however think that lawyers and psychologists have a particular responsibility, to refrain from making allegatons about other people's alleged 'insanity', without evidentiary detailed enquiry or justifications therefore, and further more to challenge others who do make such allegations, to enquire what the foundation is for their allegations.

When we accuse someone of being a 'racist' or a 'nutjob', we lose the opportunity to talk about the the underlying issues. If I do, as I may, at some point, someone please give me a 'whoaa' reminder!

"I invite everyone to find discrepancies in my theories. It's an uncomfortable discussion, but to solve problems we have to first recognise them." — Thilo Sarrazin

Hope thats more clear. Thanks for your points.

ayrtahmbooks,

Yes, I did read Lee's manifesto.

I would not describe his manifesto as ravings, but if thats your interpretation, fair enough. I'd say he was angry and extrmely frustrated. But it depends on how you define 'ravings', so perhaps I'd agree, but not according to my defintion of 'ravings'.

Regarding 'reasonable person'; are you referring to the Man on the Clapham Omnibus reasonable person? Did you apply the Common Law Reasonable Man Test, and if so, using which qualifiers?

Personally, I'd say an Ecolaw Bolam Test could be justified for his 'reasonableness', with Daniel Quinn and various Population Policy expert witnesses regarding his population concerns, etc. (Bolam v. Friern Hospital Management Committee [1957] 1 WLR 582; [1957] 2 All ER 118 [PDF: http://www.scribd.com/doc/33092633%5D)

Also, Mr. Lee was born on an island (Hawaii), and had cultural island perspectives, which are frequently more sensitive to finite resource management issues, than non-islanders. The common law reasonableness test has cultural applications, similar to that of a professional skill application, which could be considered for his reasonableness. Mr. Lee was also a member of the Ishmael Tribe. Where the ‘reasonableness’ of an act is questioned that involves the skills or common practices within a particular culture/tribe, then the skills and practices of that particular tribe needs to be applied to determine the cultural/tribal ‘reasonableness’ of the individual’s circumstances.

Such expert witnesses may indeed agree with you, that Mr. Lee was not acting reasonably, or they may allege that he was, and the culture he was in, who ignores his prophetic warnings are not activing reasonably. We wouldn't know unless we actually got them to testify. But one would hope they would do what professionals are required to do, make impartial enquiries and not simply rubber stamp 'non-reasonableness', because it would make those totally ignorant of what legal reasonableness means… happy to remain ignorant of the reality that their own concept of 'reasonableness' is not the one and only, i.e. hegemonically and culturally supreme and absolute.

I don't think Mr. Lee woke up one fine day, with those gripes, there was a long process of dialogue that he had with Discovery. I don't think the Founding Fathers woke up one morning and decided just for fun to dump English tea into Boston Harbour, did they?

Your views about population saturation are interesting, and I'd be willing to agree there are particular small areas on the planet that may not yet be saturated, but that there are others which are way over saturated. For example, do you think Arizona's immigration law hasn't got anything to do with carrying capacity population saturation?

Your faith is admirable. Faith is however not my preferential problem solving method. I prefer resolving problems scientifically, by confronting their root causes honestly and then finding ways to avoid or mitigate them, by addressing those root causes.

Straight faith as a problem solving method, is employed by those who so choose. That's protected under law.

Why get all touchy-feely, when a complete psych work up is NEVER gonna happen with this late, would be mass murderer.

The dumping of the Tea into Boston Haaba, didn't involve guns and strapped on bombs for the King. Not yet, anyways.

Addressing root causes would be the perfect solution, for all the time in the world. But here we had a situation of saving human lives the best way we knew how. And it worked out well.

So Andrea, (or would you prefer Ms Freud?) you are saying in your pseudo-intellectual way that Mr. Lee is a "victim of society"? That WE are at fault? The police should have shot us instead?

You've posted an awful lot of words on your several posts but the logic reflects a life immersed in detached "theory". Smart people don't need to use complicated and pretentious arguments to make simple points.

The world is populated by real people doing real things in real time. Those of us living in that world are not so pedantic about the finer points of what constitutes insanity when a nut starts taking hostages while threatening to kill them. When a homicidal "nut" like Mr. Lee is killed in "mid-nuttery", referring to him as being a "nut", is hardly debatable.

Life isn't a dress rehearsal. Mr. Lee at best miscalculated and suffered the dire consequences often arising when making one's point might get innocent people killed. Good riddens. Even his brother says that he was mentally disturbed and was capable of killing innocent people.

And by the way, Hitler's Nazi's liked to solve problems "scientifically" too.

Andrea:
" I stood up for Timothy McVey and he was nuts."

"I now stand up for James J. Lee and he too is nuts." (normal language cat.)

You want to start parsing 'labels' sweetheart?
You're nuts. Plus you missed "Crit. Thinking 101"

pasadenaphil

The Bolam test and other reasonableness tests applicatons I referred to were common law legal arguments, not psychological theories.

In my culture we are not obsessed with fault and blame, but with the root causes of our problems, so we can address those. That is one difference between my culture and yours. Your culture is concerned with fault, — for better or worse — which is what you use courts of law for, to determine the degree of fault/guilt. I simply applied laws and tests used by your culture's courts to determine the degree of fault, that may be applied to Mr. Lee. I have no idea what the final outcome of Ms. Lee's guilt would have been.

I don't think Mr. Lee thought of himself as a victim, I think he knew fully well he may die, and he was willing to pay the price therefore, to get his message heard. There may be other Lee's and if we don't attempt to understand what motivated Mr. Lee, but simply spit at his ideas, and opinions, we certainly should not be surprised if other Mr. Lee's also feel they are not heard.

The legal reasonableness test is not — as far as I am aware — complicated or pretentious, but a principle of common law. Millions of real people who are brought before real courts, and real magistrates in real time, have their actions tested in accordance to the common law reasonableness test every single day. Simply because most are ignorant a reasonableness test is being applied to their alleged criminal actions, to determine an aspect of their guilt or innocence, does not remove the reality of the common law reasonableness test being applied to their circumstances.

The point of a debate is, as far as I am aware, the willingness to hear alternative points of view, and to draw a conclusion based upon the evidence of all perspectives. The only things that I consider absolutely true, i.e. non debatable are issues of indisputable fact. What you may read in a police report, the details of what occurred. Once we get to interpretations of those facts, why, what was his motivation, was he sane, etc.. it is my opinion we are now moving into very debatable territory. If not, why bother with courts of law, to determine the truth about the different interpretations for motivation, sanity, events with multiple intepretations, etc?

I don't think Mr. Lee miscalcualted at all, according to his sense of urgency and beliefs. I think its possible he knew what he was doing, and had he lived a forensic psychologist would have found him — mens rea/actus reus — sane enough to stand trial. Had he a gutsy defence attorney, who applied the political necessity defence, it would have been an extremely interesting trial.

Are you suggesting that because the Nazi's solved problems scientifically, anyone who does so, is a Nazi, or that scientific solving of problems should be discarded because the Nazis did so? Not sure how to interpret your statement.

Jdennyv,

By all means provide the psychological evidentiary theory for your allegation, if you wish me to take you serious. if not, feel free to enjoy your labeling. No offence, some of my most interesting friends are quity awesomely nutty! 😉

Tell me, do you think the guys who wrote the following are nuts too, or you just a bit clueless about the application of these principles?

"In all prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right toa speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state… and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation, to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have a compulsory process of obtaining witnesses in his favour and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence"

Andrea: so what is this coldly analytical and frighteningly non-judgmental culture you refer to? Is it governed by demi-gods like you?

And please drop the masturbatory pseudo-intellectual condescension. Big words and obscure concepts are no substitute for the common sense of the obvious.

Here in MY culture, personal accountability. In lieu of stifling constraints to our personal freedoms, we strive to establish an ethos, a consensus of what is "right" and "wrong". That is what keeps people in line. Being accountable means that someone is ALWAYS to blame when things like this happen. In MY culture, we are ALL responsible for our own actions. But in your culture, people are all victims of society?

Speak English. I have no respect for people who hide behind pseudo-intellectual baffle-gab. If you are so smart, you can find the words and simple sentence structures to explain things to us stupid people.

(How obnoxious can you get? Yeesh!)

Andrea, wow, way to get tl;dr when what you're basically on is that you'd prefer Mr. Jacobson and others to abide by some of the technical rather than colloquial definitions of "insane" and its synonyms.

That would be what some like to label "unrealistic expections" you nutty little defender of dead murderers you.

Pasadenaphil,

The biggest word in Andrea's response to you was 'reasonableness.' I also notice you didn't response to her ripping your 'Nazi' argument (another label) to shreds.

But, be that as it may, below you will find a 'simple sentence structure.' of Andrea's response to you (without the aforementioned Nazi accusation rebuttal):

One note before reading: I do believe Andrea babbled on a little too long before coming to her point (Prof's mislabeling of Lee), but I was willing to read her arguments, entertain her points, and come to my own decisions without attacking her for having a contrasting viewpoint. Imagine that? Anyway, the rebuttal, Phil:

The reasonableness tests I referred to were common law legal arguments, not theories.

In my culture we are not obsessed with fault and blame, but with the root causes of our problems, so we can address those. That is one difference between our cultures. Yours is concerned with who is wrong, which is what you use courts of law to decide. I used what your own courts’ might have used to evaluate Mr. Lee. Who knows the outcome?

I don't think Mr. Lee thought of himself as a victim. I think he knew he may die, and he was willing to do so, to get his message heard. There may be other Lee's and if we don't attempt to understand what happened, we run the risk of isolating others like him (with more bad results).

The legal reasonableness test is not — as far as I know — complicated or pretentious (YOUR WORD), but a principle of common law. Millions of real people who are brought before real courts, and real magistrates in real time, have their actions tested in accordance to the common law reasonableness test every day. Simply because most are ignorant a reasonableness test is being applied, doesn’t mean it isn’t still happening.

The point of a debate is, as far as I am aware, the willingness to hear different viewpoints, and form your own opinion based on the evidence of all sides. The only things that I consider true, i.e. non debatable are issues of absolute fact. What you may read in a police report, the details of what occurred. Once we get to analyzing those facts, why, what moved him, was he sane, etc.. it is my opinion we are now moving into what is debatable. If not, why bother with courts of law, to determine the truth about differing analysis for motive, sanity, events with multiple viewpoints, etc?

I don't think Mr. Lee miscalculated at all, according to his sense of urgency and beliefs. I think its possible he knew what he was doing, and had he lived a forensic psychologist would have found him — mens rea/actus reus — sane enough to stand trial. If he had a big-time lawyer, who applied the political necessity defence, it would have been an interesting trial.

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