Irey's hysterical 'call to action' against Murtha

Although I spend the majority of my time covering the United States Senate, I'm not sure many of this year's 33 Senate races will achieve quite the same slime factor as we can expect out of the crew trying to upset Congressman John Murtha in Pennsylvania's 12th district.

And attempts to smear Murtha, distort his record and, amazingly, try to minimize the courage and guts of a highly-decorated Veteran, who served 37 years in the Marine Corps, have already begun.

His opponent is little-known Republican Diana Irey, a Washington County Commissioner who appears to now specialize in attacking Murtha's patriotism and Iraq-war stance despite -- and don't you just know this one is coming? -- having never served in the military herself.

Jason Davidek, a former staffer to Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) and now Irey's campaign manager, sent out a doozy of an e-mail to supporters yesterday bashing Murtha and begging for cash.

"Thanks to your support and the support of thousands of people like you, we've got Jack Murtha on the run," begins the oozy transmission.

"Jack Murtha has become the principal cheerleader for the Michael Moore/Cindy Sheehan crowd," Davidek's e-mail continues. "While other liberals are content to urge a policy of cut and run, Jack Murtha wants us to cut and sprint!"

He also takes time to brag that "Diana's been doing national television and radio all over the place" and boasts about three -- count 'em! -- appearances on the FOX News Channel and an intimate hour in the studio with Mike Gallagher, a right-wing radio host.

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Imagine you've forgotten once again the difference between a gorilla and a chimpanzee, so you do a quick Google image search of “gorilla." But instead of finding images of adorable animals, photos of a Black couple pop up.

Is this just a glitch in the algorithm? Or, is Google an ad company, not an information company, that's replicating the discrimination of the world it operates in? How can this discrimination be addressed and who is accountable for it?

“These platforms are encoded with racism," says UCLA professor and best-selling author of Algorithms of Oppression, Dr. Safiya Noble. “The logic is racist and sexist because it would allow for these kinds of false, misleading, kinds of results to come to the fore…There are unfortunately thousands of examples now of harm that comes from algorithmic discrimination."

On At Liberty this week, Dr. Noble joined us to discuss what she calls “algorithmic oppression," and what needs to be done to end this kind of bias and dismantle systemic racism in software, predictive analytics, search platforms, surveillance systems, and other technologies.

What you can do:
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