Democratic ideas struggle to be heard by a very lazy media

The Today show had as its lead segment Thursday morning, the subject of the Iraq war, terrorism and the midterm elections and host Matt Lauer fired an opening question at Democratic pundit James Carville that was straight out of a Republican National Committee (RNC) sound-bites book.

After saying that "the Democrats can't get their act together," Lauer went on to say this to Carville: "On this issue of can we make you safer and win the war on terror, why haven't the Democrats come up with a better answer than 'that's not a fair comment'?"

Aside from how embarrassingly uninformed Lauer's question was, Carville bungled an opportunity he should have jumped on like a pit-bull on a poodle. Just the day before, S.Amdt. 4936, a comprehensive security bill by Senate Democrats, based on their "Real Security" plan for America, was killed by the GOP leadership by a 41-57 vote that went almost straight down party lines.

"Today is another example of Republicans talking tough about national security, but then failing to do what it takes to keep America safe," said Reid after Wednesday's vote on his Real Security Act of 2006. "Our country is not as safe as it can and should be five years after 9/11, and votes like this in the Republican Congress are a reason why."

Reid continued: "The Bush White House and its Do-Nothing Congress have left our ports, borders, chemical plants and mass transit systems vulnerable. It is time this Congress finally learn the lessons of 9/11. Politics won't protect the American people. Only a serious commitment and tough and smart strategies, like the Democrats Real Security Act, will."

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

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.

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