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Thread: Michael Savage banned from UK: vows lawsuit and boycott

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    Friend of Gossip Rocks! buttmunch's Avatar
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    Default Michael Savage banned from UK: vows lawsuit and boycott

    San Francisco-based conservative talk show host Michael Savage -- whose sharp-tongued right-wing commentary has earned him headlines across the U.S. -- is making news again: He's been banned in Britain.

    Savage told The Chronicle in an exclusive interview this morning that he was shocked to learn the news that he was included in the British government's first-ever list of nearly two dozen people from across the globe who are banned from entering the nation for allegedly fostering extremism or hatred.

    "When I woke up and saw this this morning ... my first thought was, damn, there goes the summer trip where I planned to have my dental work done," the "Savage Nation" host joked. "My second thought was, darn ... there goes my visit to the restaurants of England for their great cuisine."

    But, he added, the issue is no laughing matter -- and represents a serious threat to free speech.

    "Today it's me. Tomorrow it's someone else," he said. "My first reaction is, this can't be happening ... that the land of the Magna Carta has now become the land of the mini-Carta."

    The list of high-profile banned visitors was released by Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, who published 16 of the 22 names of people banned from the country since October. They include Muslim extremists, jailed Russian gang members and an Israeli settler.

    Smith cited "public interest" reasons for not disclosing the other six names, but said that the country wanted to establish what kind of standards it would set in allowing in foreign visitors.

    "I think it's important that people understand the sorts of values and sorts of standards that we have here, the fact that it's a privilege to come and the sort of things that mean you won't be welcome in this country," Smith told Britain's GMTV.

    Savage, who broadcasts from San Francisco on KNEW -- and reaches an estimated 8 to 10 million listeners on more than 350 stations nationwide, according to industry publications -- has made news for calling the Quran, the Muslim holy book, a "book of hate."

    And he has earned the wrath of parents of autistic children, saying that many times it's "a brat who hasn't been told to cut the act out."

    His companions on the British list include Stephen "Don" Black, who founded a white supremacist Web site in Florida, and preacher Fred Phelps, who leads an anti-gay church in Topeka, Kan., and who has been to San Francisco numerous times to mount anti-gay protests.

    Others on the list: Yunis Al-Astal, a Hamas lawmaker in Gaza, Egyptian cleric Safwat Hijazi, Israeli settler Mike Guzovsky, who has been accused by British authorities of being linked to military training camps.

    Two leaders of a Russian gang, Artur Ryno and Pavel Skachevsky, were also barred; they served more than a decade in Russian prisons for racially based murders of 19 people, according to the Associated Press.

    Savage told The Chronicle that being included in such a crowd is no laughing matter -- and he is now preparing legal action against Smith, he said.

    "This lunatic ... is linking me up with Nazi skinheads who are killing people in Russia, she's putting me in a league with Hamas murderers who kill Jews on busses," he said. "I have never advocated violence ... I've been on the air 15 years. My views may be inflammatory, but they're not violent in any way."

    He said he has been defamed and endangered by the British government action. "She has painted a target on my back, linking me with people who are in prison for killing people," he said. "Does she not think people might hunt me down?"

    Savage said he has had no contact with the British government or with Smith's office and has no idea how he ended up on the British Home secretary's list.

    And he said he is working with attorneys and supporters who have called from around the world in an effort to find out.

    "Is it the government's investigation? Who did this? If she didn't draw it up, who did?" he said.

    But he said that even liberals should be disturbed at the move by the British government taken this week because they should wonder "who's next?"

    "All I've done is expressing strong political opinions that happen to be quite patriotic to a large generation of Americans. They're not really out of the mainstream with most of America. Yeah, they're out of the mainstream with San Francisco and Los Angeles," he said.

    But now "who else will be banned -- all the people who listen to my show, 10 million people? Should they also not go to Britian?"http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/nov05election/detail?entry_id=39618
    Just one more reason why I love the UK. Ban his sorry ass and make it perfectly clear he's right up there with muslim hate-mongeres. Dickhead. Stop whining.
    'Those who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.' Ben Franklin

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross."
    --Sinclair Lewis

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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Good. Just like Limbaugh, his show makes my blood pressure spike if I ever make the mistake of listening to the horrid bullshit he spews.

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    Elite Member katerpillar's Avatar
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    Hahaha fantastic!

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    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Wednesday May 6, 2009 06:50 EDT
    The faux defense of Western liberties from the anti-Muslim, Mark Steyn Right

    (updated below)

    One of the tactics endlessly used by America's right-wing warriors in their crusade against Islamic radicalism is the pretense that they are motivated by a defense of core Western freedoms, particularly free speech rights. Even the most cynical observer has to be impressed by how much martyrdom-mileage they've been able to squeeze out of Canada's petty and dangerous (though ultimately dismissed) formal proceedings brought against Mark Steyn and Ezra Levant for that duo's publication of anti-Islamic screeds. Levant managed to write a whole self-glorifying book about his plight and continues to this day to relentlessly depict himself as a modern-day Thomas Paine battling against Muslim censors and their leftist, free-speech-hating Western allies. Nobody trumps up self-pitying, self-centered persecutions as well as the tough-guy warriors of the neoconservative Right.

    That said, concerns about the erosion of free speech rights in the Western world -- as part of a misguided attempt to suppress "hate speech" and other forms of religious and racial bigotry and as a way of accommodating the growing Muslim populations of Europe -- are both legitimate and warranted. I vehemently condemned Canada's investigations of Steyn and Levant despite finding them and their "ideas" noxious in the extreme, and I oppose with equal fervor use of "hate speech" laws in Europe and Canada to punish those who express bigoted views. No matter the motive, attempts by the state to circumscribe certain ideas as off-limits, prohibited, and sanctionable are always wrong and dangerous -- period.

    But the anti-Muslim Right's parading around under the free speech banner (just like their pretense of safeguarding the rights of gay people from oppressive Muslim societies) is so blatantly insincere, nothing more than a means of opportunistically elevating and justifying their anti-Islamic animus. That fact is conclusively demonstrated by how selectively self-interested is the application of their free speech "principles."

    The latest controversy seized on by these faux free speech warriors is the gratuitous disclosure yesterday of a list of 16 individuals banned by the British government from entering the U.K. on the ground that the banned individuals fail to adhere to that nation's "values and standards." One of the individuals on the list is right-wing talk radio host Michael Savage, a fact that is causing all sorts of righteous anger from the neoconservative Right. That movement's leading political philosopher and intellectual historian -- Jonah Goldberg -- cried out: "it's idiotic and shameful for Britain to ban Michael Savage from her shores." Mark Steyn also wrote a long, impassioned protest against Britain's exclusion of Savage, based on this claimed principle:
    The British Home Secretary thinks that by making public the ban on Michael Savage she's "naming and shaming" him. But she's shaming only herself and her country. . . . The idea of ideological enforcement at the border is repugnant to a free society.
    That's such a moving defense of free expression. And the principle Steyn espouses -- "the idea of ideological enforcement at the border is repugnant to a free society" -- is one with which I wholeheartedly agree. Why, then, didn't Steyn and his allies criticize this:
    Norman Finkelstein, the controversial Jewish American academic and fierce critic of Israel, has been deported from the country and banned from the Jewish state for 10 years . . .

    Finkelstein is one of several scholars rejected by Israel in the increasingly bitter divide in academic circles, between those who support and those who criticise its treatment of Palestinians. . . . The Association for Civil Rights in Israel said the deportation of Finkelstein was an assault on free speech.

    "The decision to prevent someone from voicing their opinions by arresting and deporting them is typical of a totalitarian regime," said the association's lawyer, Oded Peler.
    Both the Haaretz editorial page and Alan Dershowitz (in an interview with me) denounced Finklestein's exclusion as obviously viewpoint-based -- but the ostensibly pro-free-expression Right was silent. Why wasn't Mark Steyn crying out then that "the idea of ideological enforcement at the border is repugnant to a free society"?

    Indeed, exactly this sort of free speech abridgment is routinely exercised by allies of the Right and against its enemies, and they either remain silent or actively supportive. Just two months ago, Canada's right-wing government barred British MP George Galloway from entering that country because of his views on the war in Afghanistan and claimed support for Hamas. Along with Savage, British officials also banned several Muslim preachers who are accused -- just like Savage -- of nothing more than expressing ideas incompatible with Britain's "values and standards." The Bush administration repeatedly detained and then barred what it perceived to be adversarial foreign journalists from entering the U.S. But the Free Expression warriors on the Right are silent about all of that because "free speech" is just another weapon used to demonize Muslims and justify their animus, not a genuinely held conviction.

    Even now, right here in the U.S., the Patriot Act explicitly allows the U.S. Government to ban individuals from entering the country on the ground that the individual "endorses or espouses" -- not engages in -- what government officials believe to be "terrorism." That provision is a purely ideological exclusion that the State Department insists allows it to ban anyone engaged in what it deems to be "irresponsible expression" of ideas.

    That provision has been used to bar numerous individuals (mostly Muslims) from entering the U.S. Most notably, it is being used still to ban a Swiss intellectual and leading scholar of the Muslim world, Tariq Ramadan, from assuming a tenured teaching position at the University of Notre Dame and from accepting invitations to address various audiences inside the United States -- even though Ramadan had entered the U.S. more than 20 times in the past without incident, is widely considered to be a moderate Muslim scholar, and has explicitly and repeatedly denounced terrorism. The Bush administration baldly acknowledged at first that it was banning him on ideological grounds, only thereafter changing its story by pointing to a $1,300 contribution Ramadan made to a Swiss charity that thereafter was placed on a U.S. government list of organizations that allegedly support Hamas. As Daphne Evitar documented, the ideology-based barring of Ramadan is consistent with a long line of similar exclusions by the U.S.:
    Such “ideological exclusion” dates back to the Cold War, the groups note, when the United States refused entry to leading scholars, writers and activists, including Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez, Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, Italian playwright Dario Fo, British novelist Doris Lessing and Canadian writer and environmentalist Farley Mowat.
    While numerous groups of American scholars have urged the Obama administration to lift the ban on Ramadan, and while the ACLU -- an organization actually devoted to a genuine belief in free expression -- continues to challenge the constitutionality of Ramadan's Patriot-Act-based exclusion from the U.S., the pretend Mark Steyn free speech movement either remains silent or, worse, explicitly endorses these viewpoint-based punishments. That's because they are perfectly content with liberty abridgments as long as they're directed at the right people.

    Proponents of speech-restrictive measures always justify themselves by claiming that their ideological opponents "incite" or support violence. One of the most important First Amendment cases in the U.S. -- Claiborne v. NAACP -- arose out of the State of Mississippi's attempts in the 1960s to impose civil liability on the local NAACP chapter and its leaders (including Medgar Evers' older brother, Charles) for allegedly "inciting" violence on the part of NAACP members through "fiery" speeches advocating boycotts of white only stores. Identically, left-wing advocates of hate speech laws claim that those who spout anti-gay, anti-Muslim or other bigoted ideas "incite" violence against minorities, while right-wing advocates of similar measures claim that people like George Galloway and Tariq Ramadan "incite" Islamic terrorism.

    The corrupt rationale for speech restrictions remains the same no matter who is advocating them. But as the Claiborne court explained in unanimously barring the imposition of liability on NAACP leaders for the violent acts of its members, to punish ideas based on the theory that those ideas "incite" violence is to strangle the concept of free expression.

    One either believes in free expression or one doesn't, and if one does, it means opposing efforts to circumscribe those ideas with which one vehemently disagrees. That's always the true test for the authenticity of one's claimed belief in these liberties. This alleged belief in free expression from the Mark Steyn Right magically extends only to those with whom they agree and is easily suspended for their ideological enemies, especially Muslims and those on the left. So transparently, it's just another club they cynically wield to glorify their bottomless animus towards Muslims and aggression in the Muslim world. Only when they begin waving the free expression flag on behalf of their ideological opponents will they deserve to have their claimed freedom "principles" taken seriously.

    UPDATE: Identically, most people seemed to be perfectly content with the draconian provisions of the Patriot Act until they start getting applied to the wrong people (which is always what happens when authoritarian government measures are instituted):
    [youtube]gFVQ0HZz2mc[/youtube]
    The faux defense of Western liberties from the anti-Muslim, Mark Steyn Right - Glenn Greenwald - Salon.com

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    That's nice. I like hate speech laws. Hate SHOULD be illegal. Demented people need leashes. Civilized ones don't.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    He is exercising his first ammendment rights like it or not
    My grace is sufficient for you, for my my strength is made perfect in weakness...I love you dad!
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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    Good. I'm glad he's banned.

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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cupcake View Post
    He is exercising his first ammendment rights like it or not
    The right to be our generation's Rumpelstiltskin.

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    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MohandasKGanja View Post
    The right to be our generation's Rumpelstiltskin.
    lol
    My grace is sufficient for you, for my my strength is made perfect in weakness...I love you dad!
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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    i always turn my radio to a different station when his show comes on.
    Basic rule of Gossip Rocks: Don't be a dick.Tati
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    Elite Member MontanaMama's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cupcake View Post
    He is exercising his first ammendment rights like it or not
    I know there was a lot of war in the last few years, but I truly do not remember invading the UK - that's about the only way that they would be subject to the US Constitution. He can exercise all the free spreech he wants, it ain't protected anywhere but in the US.

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    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    exactly!
    My grace is sufficient for you, for my my strength is made perfect in weakness...I love you dad!
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    Elite Member Cali's Avatar
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    I don't know- something about this law makes me twitchy. It can cut both ways. This argument can be extended to people of different races/ethnicities/religions/sexual orientations.... Who knows what kinds of people the UK will try to ban from entering because of this statement.

    I totally get banning the asshole who pickets military funerals, and the KKK Grand Wizard, etc. They have the potential to bring violence and commit crimes. But Michael Savage is just (far as I know) a loud-mouth hate-filled person. Its a slippery slope to start banning people just for that.

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    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    Here are thoughts from his side
    Who's hunting Savage?



    1072561532






    Who's hunting Savage?

    Posted: May 06, 2009
    1:00 am Eastern

    © 2009

    I don't believe for a minute that the United Kingdom decided to ban entry to U.S. talk-radio star Michael Savage on its own initiative.
    First of all, Savage was not asking to enter the U.K.
    Second of all, while Savage is a big fish in the U.S., his program is not widely known across the pond.
    What would possess ] Secretary Jacqui Smith to single out Savage on a short list of 16 people worldwide who would not be welcome?
    I think I know the answer.
    But first, you have to understand the backdrop to this]-controlled Congress are conducting a scorched-earth war on the First Amendment. The Federal Communications Commission will soon be headed and controlled by an appointee who thinks government, not the free market, should control broadcast programming. The appointee to be regulatory czar for the administration has flirted with ideas like a "Fairness Doctrine" for the ] and mandatory 24-hour, cooling-off periods before sending angry e-mails. As we speak, local "commissar commissions" are being established in every radio market to monitor programming and challenge broadcast licenses on the basis of content. Hate-crimes legislation has passed the House and is headed for the Senate – a bill that would punish thoughts and speech and provide, for the first time, special protections to a new "victim class" of pedophiles.
    There is little question for any serious and objective observer that the new Washington power structure is targeting the most significant voice of dissent left in America – talk radio.
    I believe with near 100 percent certainty, though I admit I can't prove it, that the initiative for this symbolic effort to ban Michael Savage from a country he had no intention of visiting came not from London, but from Washington.
    Savage commands the third-largest audience of all talk shows in the country. He is also the most critical of Obama and the Democrat-dominated Congress. He is the edgiest. He pushes the envelope. He has been falsely accused of being a "hater" and engaging in "hate speech" plenty of times.
    That's why he was the perfect target for a pre-emptive and insidious attack on his character. Here's the way I [] it going down.
    (Column continues below)

    500307187

    Someone in Washington with good connections to the socialist government in the U.K. made a call one day.
    "Listen, you could really help us out there," that someone likely said. "We've got this talk-show host who is really poisoning the minds of the American people – saying unspeakable things about our president and other officials in Washington. Next time you put out a list of people unwelcome in the U.K., why don't you include this guy? His name is Michael Savage."
    It was an easy favor for Jacqui Smith to fulfill.
    She has a long track record of hating free speech, embracing the fascist code of "political correctness" and promoting Big Brother ideas and regulations.
    How would this help Savage's foes in Washington?
    When they up the ante in their campaign against talk radio, it will be Savage they point to as an example of all that is dangerous and irresponsible on the broadcast airwaves.
    "Look," they'll say, "this guy spews so much hatred, the U.K. banned him from even visiting the country. Our greatest ally in Europe won't even allow him entry into the country. It is just plain wrong to allow people like this unfettered access to the public airwaves."
    That's the game plan.
    Mark my words.
    And this move will, once again, have a "chilling effect" on other hosts, on other radio programs, on syndicators, on radio stations that air controversial talk.
    Like Savage or hate him – and I like him – it's time for all people of conscience and goodwill to stand behind him and his right to air his views, views that represent many millions of Americans.
    If we don't all hang together, as they say, we'll all hang separately.
    Last edited by cupcake; May 6th, 2009 at 03:33 PM.
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    Elite Member Cali's Avatar
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    ETA: thanks for the edit cupcake!

    Quote Originally Posted by cupcake View Post
    But first, you have to understand the backdrop to this
    Barack Obama and the Democrat controlled Congress are conducting a scorched-earth war on the First Amendment. The Federal Communications Commission will soon be headed and controlled by an appointee who thinks government, not the free market, should control broadcast programming. The appointee to be regulatory czar for the administration has flirted with ideas like a "Fairness Doctrine" for the internet and mandatory 24-hour, cooling-off periods before sending angry e-mails. As we speak, local "commissar commissions" are being established in every radio market to monitor programming and challenge broadcast licenses on the basis of content. Hate-crimes legislation has passed the House and is headed for the Senate – a bill that would punish thoughts and speech and provide, for the first time, special protections to a new "victim class" of pedophiles.
    That theory sounds completely wacky....

    I guess this author is talking about the incoming Commissioner of the FCC, Mignon Clyburn. I don't know anything about her, but here's what a press release says about her:
    Mignon L. Clyburn, Nominee for Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
    Mignon Clyburn has been a member of the Public Service Commission of South Carolina since 1998. The Public Service Commission regulates South Carolina’s investor owned public utilities, including providers of telecommunications services. The South Carolina General Assembly elected Clyburn as a Commissioner representing the Sixth Congressional District in May of 1998, and she has been re-elected three times. She chaired the Commission from 2002 to 2004. Clyburn is a past chair of the Southeastern Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners. She is presently the chair of the Washington Action Committee of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). Clyburn also serves on NARUC’s Audit Committee and Utilities Market Access Partnership Board. Clyburn graduated from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science degree in Banking, Finance & Economics in 1984. Before her election to the Public Service Commission she spent fourteen years as the Publisher and General Manager of The Coastal Times, a weekly newspaper in Charleston, South Carolina.

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