New on NewsReal – "WikiLeaks: The Movie(s)," Coming Soon to a Theater Near You

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

The enemies of liberty may be gaining steam in Egypt right now, but Hollywood doesn’t seem to notice. No, to them we’re still our own worst enemy. Mike Fleming at Deadline reports that no less than seven potential film projects based on cyber-anarchist Julian Assange and his whistle-blowing organization WikiLeaks are under consideration:

The Hurt Locker screenwriter Mark Boal and Management 360 have partnered with financier/producer Megan Ellison to option The Boy Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, an article about WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange in The New York Times Magazine written by the newspaper’s executive editor Bill Keller. Ellison, an exec producer of True Grit, will finance development through her Annapurna Pictures and she, Boal and Management 360 will produce. Boal might write the film, but that will depend on if he has time […]


His is just the latest in a growing number of Julian Assange/WikiLeaks movies that should continue to swell as more books about the controversial figure get published. I’ve heard DreamWorks is circling Inside WikiLeaks, a book that will be released February 15. It is written by Daniel Domscheit-Berg, Assange’s number 2 at WikiLeaks who defected because he wanted WikiLeaks to apply journalistic discretion in the dispersal of secret government documents while Assange wanted to release as many as he could get his hands on.

There is also the $1.5 million memoir by Assange. Movie/TV rights will be handled by CAA for lit agency Peters Fraser & Dunlop, and rumors are that The Bourne Ultimatum director Paul Greengrass might come attached (insiders said that’s not definitive). Among the other Assange movies that have already mobilized, Universal  Pictures will finance and distribute an Alex Gibney-directed documentary on Assange and WikiLeaks that will be produced by Gibney and former Universal Pictures chairman Marc Shmuger, and HBO is in talks with BBC to collaborate on a pic that would be based partly on  Raffi Khatchadourian’s New Yorker article No Secrets: Julian Assange’s Mission for Total Transparency. Another documentary, WikiLeaks: War, Lies and Videotape has been picked up to be distributed by Zodiak. There are two more books available for movies: WME is handling Megaleaks by Andy Greenberg, and there is also WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War On Secrecy is coming from David Leigh and Luke Harding, two reporters from UK’s The Guardian who were the first to receive leaks from Assange and then shared them with Der Spiegel and The New York Times.

All of this is to be expected, of course—Hollywood has a track record of presenting the United States government as the bad guy in our conflicts abroad, from Vietnam onward. They pretty consistently bomb at the box office, but Hollywood keeps churning them out anyway, their left-wing ideology drowning out whatever good business sense or understanding of what the audience wants they may have.

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

Around the Web

Happy New Year, everyone!

Kirsten Powers gets thrown off balance by a nasty run-in with the truth.

I admire those who join armies, whether America’s or the Taliban’s.” Just don’t question their patriotism.

RedState has a troubling rundown of the problems with Michael Steele’s would-be RNC successors.

Some pinhead named Tad Lumpkin shills for Julian Assange on Big Government. Andrew Breitbart, call your office; this guy’s gotta go.

Another day, another debate about social issues on NewsReal. Do you think there’s a “true” definition of conservatism?

The internet is abuzz with acclaim for Red Letter Media’s third and final takedown of the Star Wars prequel trilogy. These reviews have been amusing (if extremely off-color), and made some fair points, but they’re drastically overrated, and seem to mostly coast on people’s raw, blind hatred of the prequels. (More here.)

New on NewsReal – What Motivates Radical Libertarians’ Blind Allegiance to Anti-Government Thugs Like Julian Assange

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

The outpouring of support WikiLeaks and Julian Assange have received from the usual paleo-libertarian suspects is as illuminating as it is predictable. Take, for example, Ron Paul’s latest attempt at LewRockwell.com to make excuses for the leaking of highly sensitive government data because—as always—the real villain we should be worried about is Uncle Sam:

[S]tate secrecy is anathema to a free society. Why exactly should Americans be prevented from knowing what their government is doing in their name?

In a free society, we are supposed to know the truth. In a society where truth becomes treason, however, we are in big trouble. The truth is that our foreign spying, meddling, and outright military intervention in the post–World War II era has made us less secure, not more […]

The neoconservative ethos, steeped in the teaching of Leo Strauss, cannot abide an America where individuals simply pursue their own happy, peaceful, prosperous lives. It cannot abide an America where society centers around family, religion, or civic and social institutions rather than an all-powerful central state. There is always an enemy to slay, whether communist or terrorist. In the neoconservative vision, a constant state of alarm must be fostered among the people to keep them focused on something greater than themselves – namely their great protector, the state. This is why the neoconservative reaction to the WikiLeaks revelations is so predictable: “See, we told you the world was a dangerous place,” goes the story. They claim we must prosecute – or even assassinate – those responsible for publishing the leaks. And we must redouble our efforts to police the world by spying and meddling better, with no more leaks.

True to form, Paul doesn’t even try to address the evidence that WikiLeaks is a national-security threat operating against the law and beyond the First Amendment’s protection. As usual when it comes to foreign policy, the self-appointed spokesman of our forefathers is actually on the wrong side of the Founding regarding the necessity of maintaining a certain level of secrecy (see Federalist 64 and Federalist 70). And once again, the Paulite cult’s strange fixation on Leo Strauss pops up. (On that note, I have a suggestion for NRB’s Paulite readers: when you comment on this post—and I know you will—instead of regurgitating the same old complaints, how about explaining to me just what nefarious Straussian teachings we “neocons” are under the influence of?)

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

New at NewsReal – Are the Assange Rape Charges a Pretext to Bust Him for WikiLeaks? Maybe – and That’s Okay

My latest NewsRealBlog post:

This weekend at NewsRealBlog, we had quite the brawl over the sexual-assault charges against WikiLeaks’ anarchic head honcho, Julian Assange. Today, let’s look at the arrest at a different angle: regardless of whether or not he assaulted anyone, is it right to use these charges as an excuse to punish his cyber terrorism?

Child abuse and sex crime victims’ advocate Wendy Murphy isn’t so sure. At the Daily Beast, she says the charges, if true, would be worth pursuing, but the prosecutors’ motives don’t pass the smell test:

[I]f Assange were any other guy, he would not be sitting in a British jail and there would have been no international manhunt, no matter how may times his condom broke during sex.

Because the public understands this, they also understand that the timing of Assange’s arrest on sex charges is suspicious. The charges are either a substitute for a lack of evidence in conjuction with a WikiLeaks indictment, or they’re “holding charges” meant to keep the guy penned up while the world figures out where, if anywhere, Assange might actually be prosecutable for the release of government files.

Either way, when prosecutors use the public’s money to pursue a criminal case as a pretext for some other agenda, people become cynical and mistrustful of the rule of law. During impeachment proceedings against President Bill Clinton for his lie about Monica Lewinsky, the public was plenty offended by Clinton’s behavior, but the impeachment proceedings were so over the top, many came to believe the process was nothing but a contrived show trial, generated by people who couldn’t have cared less about presidential lying but who hoped to seize the moment for political gain.

Read the rest at NewsRealBlog.

WikiLeaks Scoop: Bush Was Right

Those of us who were paying attention already knew this, but it’s always good to have more voices and revelations corroborating the same thing. From Larry Elder:

Wired magazine’s contributing editor Noah Shachtman — a nonresident fellow at the liberal Brookings Institution — researched the 400,000 WikiLeaked documents released in October. Here’s what he found: “By late 2003, even the Bush White House’s staunchest defenders were starting to give up on the idea that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. But WikiLeaks’ newly-released Iraq war documents reveal that for years afterward, U.S. troops continued to find chemical weapons labs, encounter insurgent specialists in toxins and uncover weapons of mass destruction (emphasis added). … Chemical weapons, especially, did not vanish from the Iraqi battlefield. Remnants of Saddam’s toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents.”

In 2008, our military shipped out of Iraq — on 37 flights in 3,500 barrels — what even The Associated Press called “the last major remnant of Saddam Hussein’s nuclear program”: 550 metric tons of the supposedly nonexistent yellowcake. The New York Sun editorialized: “The uranium issue is not a trivial one, because Iraq, sitting on vast oil reserves, has no peaceful need for nuclear power. … To leave this nuclear material sitting around the Middle East in the hands of Saddam … would have been too big a risk.”

Now the mainscream media no longer deem yellowcake — the WMD Bush supposedly lied about — a WMD. It was, well, old. It was degraded. It was not what we think of when we think of WMD. Really? Square that with what former Democratic National Chairman Howard Dean said in April 2004: “There were no weapons of mass destruction.” MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow goes even further, insisting, against the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, that “Saddam Hussein was not pursuing weapons of mass destruction”!

Bush, hammered by the insidious “Bush Lied, People Died” mantra, endured one of the most vicious smears against any president in history. He is owed an apology.

When Hollywood makes “The Vindication of George W. Bush,” maybe Sean Penn can play the lead. 

Still doesn’t make Julian Assange any less of a cretinous wretch. Throw the book at him.

WikiLeaks and the Soul of the Libertarian Movement (UPDATED)

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This week, I’ve devoted several posts to libertarians shilling for Julian Assange, WikiLeaks, and Bradley Manning. But are these examples representative of the libertarian movement as a whole? Let’s take a look around the blogosphere:
So while, there are some voices of reason and conscience within the libertarian movement, there are lots of bad apples. I sympathize with those good-faith believers in individual liberty and limited government who’d genuinely like to see their house get back in order; it’s going to be a tough, messy battle, But it’s a battle they’ve got to undertake if libertarianism as a whole is going to deserve respect. The health & respectability of any movement can be judged by the degree to which it self-polices wrongdoing by its members. Chris Wysocki captures my thoughts perfectly:
Of course it’s all predicated on their belief that the public has a “right” to know everything which the government says or does; coupled with the assertion that no statement is exempt from the free speech protections embodied in the First Amendment. It’s about “trust”, as in the libertarians have absolutely no trust in the elected government.

Welcome to the promise of a world governed by a cross between the pre-imperial Roman Senate and a typical New England town meeting. It’s one step above organized chaos, predicated on the notion that everyone is equally capable of governing himself.

And here I thought that only progressives dreamed of utopia […]

One could say the same about my libertarian interlocutors. They seek to destroy authority, and replace it with, well exactly what I’m not sure. It’s some sort of idealized leave-me-the-hell-alone universe where a subset of the Articles of Confederation are in effect and a never-ending supply of Founding Fathers (or a clone army comprised of Murray Rothbards and Friedrich Hayeks) stands at the ready to prevent deviation from The Path.

That in a nutshell is my beef with strong-form libertarianism. I believe in the Constitution, so much so that I an willing to work within its framework to effect the changes we so desparately need. The power of the ballot box should not be underestimated. In addition America has a long and noble history of peaceful protest, the massing of public opinion in a focused attempt to make our voices heard. We are America, hear us roar!
 UPDATE: The Classic Liberal responds in the comments:
The “prophetic” words were those of Russell Kirk, the undisputed godfather of the conservative movement who said “Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace comes to pass in an era of Righteousness — that is, national or ideological self-righteousness in which the public is persuaded that ‘God is on our side,’ and that those who disagree should be brought here before the bar as war criminals.”

The quote that followed about Assange was not written by Lew Rockwell, but by retired USAF lieutenant colonel Karen Kwiatkowski. 

I apologize for my mistake.

Young Americans "for" Liberty Disgraces Themselves, as Expected

We already knew YAL was worthless thanks to the intellectual & moral caliber of Wesley Messamore’s attacks on me. Now YAL is honoring Judge Andrew Napolitano as their “Rebel of the Week” for defending Julian Assange. (They don’t, however, mention that Napolitano is a 9/11 Truther.) Between this, and YAL’s cult icon shilling for Assange, I guess we have the answer to the question I posed on Tuesday. Libertarianism is failing another basic moral test.

Of Course: Traitor Ron Paul Shills for WikiLeaks Scumbag

Not that we need any more proof that Texas GOP Congressman Ron Paul is a lying degenerate whose love of America is a total sham, but today we’ve got more anyway. Not surprisingly, Paul is defending Julian Assange, the puffed-up pimp whose WikiLeaks outfit has been exposing sensitive classified information with reckless abandon for a while now:

“In a free society we’re supposed to know the truth,” Paul said. “In a society where truth becomes treason, then we’re in big trouble. And now, people who are revealing the truth are getting into trouble for it.”

Hot Air’s commenters have some simple-yet-effective takedowns of the stupidity:

Doughboy: “Well then hell, Ron, let’s just tell the world where we hide our nuclear weapons and what the arming codes are. You know, since we live in a free society and all.”

Good Solid B-Plus: “Well, Ron, since it’s a free society and all, can you e-mail me your bank account # and PIN? Thanks a bunch.”

But this goes well beyond stupid, and into disgraceful. First, “revealing the truth” isn’t what Assange does. Has Congressman Paul forgotten that this punk released edited footage that falsely made American soldiers look like reckless killers? Or does he just not care?

Second, Julian Assange has the blood of innocent people on his hands, as a direct result of his “truth-revealing”:

The Taliban has issued a warning to Afghans whose names might appear on the leaked Afghanistan war logs as informers for the Nato-led coalition. 
In an interview with Channel 4 News, Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said they were studying and investigating the report, adding “If they are US spies, then we know how to punish them.”
The warning came as the US military’s top officer, Admiral Mike Mullen said that Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, may already have blood on his hands following the leak of 92,000 classified documents relating to the war in Afghanistan by his website.

“Mr Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he and his source are doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family,” he said.

Information from the documents could reveal:

  • Names and addresses of Afghans cooperating with Nato forces
  • Precise GPS locations of Afghans
  • Sources and methods of gathering intelligence

Does Ron Paul remember that? Was he paying attention at the time?

Does Ron Paul even care?

We already know the answer.

Today’s Moral Test for Libertarians

So, apparently the verminous Julian Assange is telling people he considers himself a libertarian in some ways, and that he leaks classified government information to make free markets better informed and work better. I wonder how many libertarians will buy that line, and how many will have the decency to distance themselves from Assange.

Did the Commander-in-Chief Allow the Endangerment of Afghan Informants?

That’s what scumbag propagandist Julian Assange apparently alleges. If it’s true that Obama had the opportunity to redact the names and locations of “hundreds of Afghan civilians who worked as informants for the U.S. military,” it would sure strike me as impeachment-worthy. But this is Julian Assange we’re talking about; his word isn’t enough evidence to go after Obama on.