• Text smaller
  • Text bigger

Do you suppose that members of Congress are getting ready to act on information they have in the course of doing their jobs about the issuance of FaceBook’s initial public offering?

You know, an invitation to an initial public offering that you and I will never get, but our representatives in Congress might? Could it be that a lot of people on Capitol Hill are going to get invited to a seat at the table that could make them fabulously rich when FaceBook issues its IPO?

Maybe Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., can tell us. Or Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. How about former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi? Or Dennis Hastert?

In fact, these should be the standard questions asked by the media ficus plants to each and every member of Congress: “Have you received an invitation to the FaceBook initial public offering?” or “Will you have any involvement whatsoever in the FaceBook IPO?”

“Thanks to the solid new research and recent revelations in Peter Schweizer’s book ‘Throw Them All Out’ and the subsequent coverage on ’60 Minutes,’” said Sarah Palin, “we have concrete proof to explain how members of Congress accumulate wealth at a rate astonishingly faster than the rest of Americans and have stock portfolios that outperform even the best hedge-fund managers’. (Full disclosure: Schweizer is employed by my political action committee as a foreign policy adviser.)”

You might want to contact your member of Congress and ask them if they’ll enrich their stock portfolio with an invitation to FaceBook’s IPO. To make direct contact with your member, I suggest you use Gradegov.com, as it lists the personal email account of each member of Congress. Let me know if you get a response.

Intrade: Betting money on who’ll win the GOP nomination.

This is real money. People are putting their greenbacks on who they think the winner will be. In the race for the Iowa Caucus, if you were a betting person where would you put your money? This is the political stock market. If you want to see who’s going to finish in the money on Tuesday, click on Intrade to see where people are placing their money.

Bare Naked Islam shut down by CAIR, WordPress host

The Council on American Islamic Relations is taking credit for pressuring WordPress.com to evict one of its bloggers.

On Thanksgiving weekend, the Hamas-connected CAIR complained to WordPress.com about a comment left at the blogsite Bare Naked Islam they said violated WordPress.com’s Terms of Service. WordPress.com removed the blogsite.

Bare Naked Islam (BNI) blogger “Bonni” has been publishing reports about Islamic practices on the site for three years, collating content from internationally published, legitimate news reports about Islamic acts of aggression and atrocities and re-publishing them on her site with headlines and commentary. The blog has attracted more than 15 million hits and averages 35,000 daily readers, who have left more than 300,000 comments.

“I post stories of a lot of violence going on in the Muslim world and not even just the Muslim world but Europe, riots, church burnings. So people get angry and they react and say things that are controversial,” Bonni said. “So [CAIR] caught on to that and told WordPress I was advocating for violence, which I never was, and they took certain comments from different stories out of context and put them all together and made them sound terrible.”

WordPress.com agreed to reinstate the blog if they removed the “offending” comments. Bonni eventually decided to remove all 300,000 comments, and since then has been closely monitoring subsequent comments.

The matter was resolved until she blogged about the TLC network program “All American Muslim,” a controversial TV program about Muslim families living in Dearborn, Mich.

“I had done a story about the program and the Muslims’ campaign to stop Lowe’s [Home Improvement stores] from pulling their ad from the ‘All American Muslim’ program,” said Bonni. “I did the initial story about the program … and I listed their sponsors in case people wanted to contact them. And then the Florida Family Association sent out a lot of emails and petitions to get program sponsors to rethink their advertising on the show. Well, several sponsors dropped out after the first show … but Lowe’s made it public and sent a letter to the FFA telling them ‘we don’t agree with the content of the show and we’re pulling our ads.’ That became a big story in the news, and CAIR decided to demand that Lowe’s reinstate their ads because to not do so would be considered Islamophobic in their eyes.

“They staged boycotts of Lowe’s in every city. CAIR kept pushing this issue, and I kept pushing back the other way,” she continued. “Every week I would list the sponsors with links. My readers began contacting the sponsors, and in reaction to the boycotts, I called for a BUYcott and encouraged them to buy something at Lowe’s. Evidently a lot of them they did, because Lowe’s sales went way up and the ratings for ‘All American Muslim’ dropped like a stone. I think that’s what really infuriated CAIR, and that’s when they came after me.”

Last Friday Bonni’s blog went down. A message from WordPress.com appeared, informing her that BNI had been deactivated for yet another violation of TOS, but according to Bonni, refused to describe the nature of the violation.

Bonni tweeted that WordPress.com had again taken down BNI.

Almost immediately, Twitter users protested to WordPress.com. Soon after, Bonni received a press release from CAIR, claiming credit for the blog’s removal.

Bonni says WordPress.com has temporarily reactivated the blog until Jan. 6, giving her time to export its contents. She says she’s now in the process of moving Bare Naked Islam to a host that is “CAIR proof.” More details about the incident can be heard during my interview with Bonni on my radio program, “The Andrea Shea King Show.”

Pamela Geller, a columnist at WND who also has been a frequent target of death threats by Islamists for her anti-Jihad activism and news and opinion blog Atlas Shrugs, defended BNI: “The fundamental principle of free speech is the protection of all speech, not just speech we like. Because who decides what’s good and what’s forbidden? The Hamas-tied thugs and enemies of free speech at CAIR?”

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it” — Voltaire

“If it can happen to BNI, it can happen to any of us,” said Geller. “Contact support@wordpress.com.”

The New Media Index

A debate over the 2011 Lie of the Year; the week’s most popular news video on YouTube; the top five linked-to stories; and top stories on the blogs.

Bookmark and add this to your list of interesting and informative sites. It’s the Pew Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism weekly feature, The New Media Index. According to PEJ, this weekly report researches what news-making topics online sites are focusing on and how their narrative compares to those in the traditional press.

The New Media Index PEJ “captures the news agenda of social media, with a focus on blogs, Twitter and YouTube. These platforms are an important part of today’s news information narrative and shape the way Americans interact with the news. The expansion of blogs and other social media sites has allowed news-consumers and others outside the mainstream press to have more of a role in agenda setting, dissemination and interpretation.”

Check here for the week’s top Twitter topics. And bloggers recall the Year in Pictures.

The top stories of 2011

According to the Pew Research Center, the biggest story of the year was the economy. The second biggest story of the year was the unfolding uprisings in the Middle East, from the mass protests in Egypt in February to the hunt for Muammar Gaddafi in October. The third biggest story of the year was the race for U.S. president. Here are the rest of the top stories, determined by analysis of close to 46,000 stories produced from Jan. 1-Dec. 11, 2011, of content analysis in 52 different traditional news outlets from five main media sectors. The report also includes an analysis of the year in social media, based on the group’s weekly analysis of blogs and Twitter, the New Media Index.

Test your knowledge of the news and the media in 2010 with this quiz from the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. Note: This quizzes you on events of 2010, if you can remember that far back! Questions are based on PEJ research and general knowledge about the media. Confession: Of ten questions, I got seven correct answers. How many will you answer correctly?

  • Text smaller
  • Text bigger
Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.