Usually when I write “Grandmom’s guide to computer” series, I get a geek who corrects my ignorance.

That’s fine: I’m a doctor, not a geek, and the series is trying to explain basic computer stuff that I had to learn painfully on my own to others who might, like me, be from the stone ages of snailmail and dead wood news.

However, when an article about computer security and the danger of opening spam (using a WaPo article on Obama spam as an example) resulted in a personal attack by an Obama supporter, well, it got me wondering. Usually I just delete personal attacks and hate comments from my various blogs, but the attack got me angry.
So I tried googling about the problem.

Here in the Philippines, it is common to shut down political criticism by using the libel law (Bishop Cruz), finding you too have committed crimes of corruption (Lozada, arrested for corruption of several thousand dollars, after he accused a politician for taking a 40 million dollar bribe) or, if worse comes to worse, hiring retired NPA members to do a hit job on the reporter/politician.

In Canada, it seems that they can take you to court for hate speech.

But in the US?

Well, you just re resurrect the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy.  Ho hum, what else is new?

The Washington Post article “exposed” that the so called Obama libel spam was discussed on Free Republic. Well, duh. The Freepers have been a leader of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy for years. Nearly every rumor is discussed there, including W’s cocaine use, but the site is a center of the anti Clinton right. No big deal.

But Kristin (a lawyer associated with the site) reports that the WaPo reporter has exposed the identity of anonymous posters in the past, and the WaPo article also “exposed” ordinary people who dared to think the rumor was important, but who denied being involved in the spamming.

Kristin is quite paranoid about it:

The article Mosk wrote today purports to be about efforts to track down where the ‘Obama is a Muslim’ allegations began. However, it is actually a warning shot across the bow to opponents of Obama that they will be tracked down and exposed for speaking ill of the Obamessiah.

Shutting down free speech on the internet? Finding the name and address of people who post anonymously on websites and have reporters harass them and expose them to ridicule? Nonsense. You can only do that in places like…except that the Washington Post has done just that.

But things are worse than that.

Blogger has a small flag at the top of each blog, where readers can complain about the blog if it is spam or has objectionable content… No big deal. But apparently someone has been using this to shut down pro Hillary blogs.

Blogspasm Blog reports on a handful blogs that have been shut down by Google at “Blogger”. What they seem to have in common is that all of them are Pro Hillary Blogs that oppose Obama, and the suspicion is that Google is being manipulated by Obama operatives to shut down the opposition.

No proof, just a suspicion.

But the gals involved are angry…a lot of the blogs belong to the “just say no deal” blog .

And one result is that many are leaving Blogger.

Hillary Or Bust Blog has moved to a different server, explaining she doesn’t need the hassle, and explains what happens when a blog is shut down:

 I, along with many other anti-Obama blogs on Blogger, got flagged within the past 24 hours. Blogger has sent us automated emails telling us that are posting privileges are suspended because we are a suspected “spam blog.”

I had to enter in a code to request an editorial review from a live person, which make take up to four days. Had I missed the email, or had been on vacation, without my review request my blog would have been completely destroyed in 20 days.

No big deal for professionals, but a big deal to ordinary folks, who might be so humiliated that they might stop blogging altogether. Right now, the list is at seven, but now that it has had an “instalache”, undoubtedly more embarrassed folks will come to light.

Now, no body thinks that Obama himself is promoting such dastardly deeds, but one reason a lot of us don’t like him is because of the adoration in the media and true believer types who follow his campaign.

Since Free Republic hates both McCain almost as much as they hate Hillary, one doubts that they are doing McCain’s dirty work in pushing the Obama rumors. As I noted, they post lots of rumors.

But when Obama’s supporters verbally attack and try to shut down sites critical of their man, one has to worry.

As a Hillary supporter, I suppose that I will be in their sights. But presumably, my Blogger blog is safe and won’t be targeted….

Uh Oh….fascism alert!  Grandmom has a link to Free Republic on one of her blogs….

Inuit oral tradition sheds light on the Franklin expeditionFR has links for further info...(not work friendly)…

Yup.  Grandmom is a dangerous member of the Hillary Left AND the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy! Call the Messiah protection police! Close down that hateful website!

Just joking, but if the website is shut down, I’ll let you know.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. She posts on human rights at Makaipa blog.

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