The blogs are a-buzzin' regarding the leaked DHS document on "Right-Wing Extremism" (#1 item on Memeorandum). A few highlights:
- Malkin contacted the press office of the DHS and has confirmed the FOUO document is not a hoax.
- One of my favorite political reporters, David Weigel, has a very dissapointing post where he condones this type of activity by the federal government (even though he once wrote for the libertarian Reason). His time at Washington Independent has mostly been spent criticizing far-right rhetoric as asinine, but it's a pretty big step to go from Stewart-style ridiculing to saying that his fellow countrymen need to be part of a federal dragnet. What a shame.
- Other progressive blogs like Think Progress, who get up in arms when 9/11 masterminds have their legal rights violated, see no problem with citizens in flyover land being the target of misleading characterizations as "domestic terrorists". I'm sure you all didn't see that hypocrisy coming.
This gets repeated over and over again during the report. They have no threat information. In fact, the report can’t even say definitively whether “extremists” are gaining “new recruits”. In order to find that, they’d have to identify the actual groups, note the recruiting patterns, and determine whether in fact they’re gaining recruits or losing members. Bottom line: DHS has no actual data. They’re pulling threats out of their collective arse and publishing them without any supporting research whatsoever.I have no idea why an intelligence assessment would be written if there was no data. I used to have the pleasure of writing documents like this in Iraq and anyone (military or civilian) would look at you like an asshole if you tried to pass off something that was based on hypothesis and no reliable sources of information/trends. It sounds more like left-wing jabber about Tea Parties being secret white supremacy gatherings than a useful assessment for intelligence officials. What an embarrassment. I feel bad for my Coastie friends who are part of this bungling bureaucracy.
Update: Famous DC Gaddabout TSO has the letter sent to the DHS by the American Legion.