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Archive for June 3rd, 2015

In an effort to counter violent extremism, the Justice Department will fund a study on the use of social media by “far-right” and Islamic groups.

The Justice Department’s National Institute of Justice (NIJ) plans to dole out $585,719 to Michigan State University to “collect posts made in … active forums … by members of the far-right and … the Islamic Extremist community, as well as posts made in Facebook, LiveJournal, Twitter, YouTube, and Pastebin accounts …. ”

NIJ will examine more social media forums used by “far-right” groups than forums used by Islamic extremist groups.

“[W]e will assess the value of these messages in the social status of the individual posting the message, and the function of radical messages in the larger on-line identity of participants in extremist communities generally,” the Justice Department said.

In April 2013 Army training materials listed evangelical Christians, orthodox Jews, and conservative Catholics in the same category as religious extremists who belong to the KKK, Hamas, and Al Qaeda.

Another report in April of 2013 found that DHS had provided materials for a training program hosted by the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) in which police officers, deputies, and CSP troopers were given instruction on the dangers of rightwing extremism and the violence that would be perpetrated by sovereign citizen groups and outlaw motorcycle gangs.

For more on this story, see Social Media Use by ‘Far-Right’ and Islamists Focus of Gov’t Study, Army training material lists evangelical Christians, Catholics as extremists, and Colorado State Police and Homeland Security Target Christians.

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Democrat Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (RI) has suggested applying RICO laws to global warming skeptics:

The coordinated tactics of the climate denial network, Brulle’s report states, “span a wide range of activities, including political lobbying, contributions to political candidates, and a large number of communication and media efforts that aim at undermining climate science.” Compare that again to the findings in the tobacco case.

The tobacco industry was proved to have conducted research that showed the direct opposite of what the industry stated publicly — namely, that tobacco use had serious health effects. Civil discovery would reveal whether and to what extent the fossil fuel industry has crossed this same line. We do know that it has funded research that — to its benefit — directly contradicts the vast majority of peer-reviewed climate science. One scientist who consistently published papers downplaying the role of carbon emissions in climate change, Willie Soon, reportedly received more than half of his funding from oil and electric utility interests: more than $1.2 million.

For more on the story, see Senator: Use RICO Laws to Prosecute Global Warming Skeptics.

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