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Dear Bob, I'm glad you're not in charge.
June 20, 2005 9:08 AM   Subscribe

GoDaddy.com condones torture. One of the most important assets we are using to protect Americans both at home and abroad is our military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba -- “Gitmo.” (Blog posting from founder Bob Parson's highlighted on the front page of GoDaddy.com) [update: recanted]
posted by mr.curmudgeon (154 comments total)

 
"If I get enough requests, I'll post the video.
After writing this article, I’ve once again watched a video showing people jumping to their deaths, one after another, from the World Trade Center. I’ve thought about making this video available for those reading this blog to see. The video can be found by searching on line, but finding it takes a little effort. If I get enough requests, I’ll make it available. I find that watching it every now and then helps me keep things in perspective."


Awesome! 9-11 Porn!!!!! I love arguments based on the logical fallacy of emotional appeal alone.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 9:12 AM on June 20, 2005


I might not agree with his opinion, and some of it is demonstrably wrong, but I don't see how this is a useful post. Guess what, there's a weblog out their named after an off-coloured type of ball used in a popular American sport full of much more heinous commentary. That'd be a crappy post too.
posted by substrate at 9:16 AM on June 20, 2005


Is this a proposition to boycott?
posted by glider at 9:18 AM on June 20, 2005


that is incredibly irritating. i'm speechless.
posted by glenwood at 9:18 AM on June 20, 2005


Godaddy does? Or one guy who founded the company does?
posted by dial-tone at 9:19 AM on June 20, 2005


Guess I'll be moving my 2-3 godaddy domains to dotster the next time an update comes around.
posted by mathowie at 9:21 AM on June 20, 2005


I stand corrected.
posted by dial-tone at 9:22 AM on June 20, 2005


I find that watching it every now and then helps me keep things in perspective.

His other favorite snuff films include, The Hindenburg Disaster, The Passion of Christ and the unforgettable R. Budd Dwyer press conference.
posted by Mr_Zero at 9:24 AM on June 20, 2005


To me Saudia Arabian soil is sacred.
I believe that there is nothing more sacred than Saudi Arabian soil and that it deserves to be protected at all costs. If there is another country or a group who would do us harm, then we must be both smart and tough enough to first destroy them.

posted by mr.marx at 9:25 AM on June 20, 2005


Is this a proposition to boycott?

Obviously. Very much so "Best of the Web."
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 9:25 AM on June 20, 2005


Godaddy does? Or one guy who founded the company does?

When the founder and president of said private company decides to very publicly display such a controversial view on the front page of the company website, I'd say it's safe to say he's representing the company with said view.

So, yes, GoDaddy does.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 9:25 AM on June 20, 2005


I might not agree with his opinion, and some of it is demonstrably wrong, but I don't see how this is a useful post.

I'd say that's for those who are hosted/registered with GoDaddy.com to decide.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 9:32 AM on June 20, 2005


The real question is:

What is GoDaddy.com's position on Peak Oil?
posted by I EAT TAPES at 9:35 AM on June 20, 2005


Wow. Another wacko found on the net. Stop the presses.
posted by Doohickie at 9:36 AM on June 20, 2005


I noticed this a while ago when I was last registering some domains. I went with RegisterFly instead.
posted by silence at 9:37 AM on June 20, 2005


Wow, so even CEO's who write blogs can look like utterly ignorant fools too? Good to know.

He's actually calling for more strenuous torture of the tougher prisoners at Gitmo? And its extremely arguable that US foreign policy against the Middle East made the US a legitimate target for retaliation in the form of the 9/11 attacks. His saying they were unwarranted overlooks a long history of pretty horrible policies resulting in untold death and suffering in addition to supporting a pretty nasty douchebag in power until it didn't suit our needs anymore.

I am damned glad I've never bought a domain from them and will happily pay a few bucks more to get one somewhere else that isn't led by a fucking nutter like Bob Parsons.
posted by fenriq at 9:39 AM on June 20, 2005


I was actually in the middle of registering a domain last night when I saw that. There's just no money in defending torture.
posted by paul_smatatoes at 9:39 AM on June 20, 2005


Good thing I'm not paying that wacko. :)
For those domain-shopping, joker is nice.
posted by dabitch at 9:40 AM on June 20, 2005


Thanks for the heads-up. This matters. I got a bunch of domains I'm gonna have to move now.
posted by muckster at 9:41 AM on June 20, 2005


Yeah...I'm all for people having their own opinions. In fact, I do lots of business with people whose political views are contrary to mine...but we all keep politcs and religion out of our business space, which is how it should be. However, when those opinions are made part of the company credo, then I as a consumer have a choice not to do business with companies who espouse and promote ideas that I consider contrary. As such, my godaddy domains will be moved.

By the same token, there are loads of people who agree with him and may switch over to the "Torture, it's what's good for America" domain registrar.
posted by dejah420 at 9:41 AM on June 20, 2005


No, the real question is:

What is GoDaddy.com's position on Kirk versus Picard?
posted by keswick at 9:43 AM on June 20, 2005


No, the real question is:

How much snark can any one Mefite deliver?

I mean, you are absolutely allowed not to care, but to feel the need to express that desire - let alone revel in it - seems a little, I don't know, pathetic?
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 9:50 AM on June 20, 2005


Namecheap is a good registrar too.. they're an ENom reseller, but they have an excellent website that's extremely easy to use and navigate. About as straightforward as I could imagine... very clean, intelligent design.

I like their WhoisGuard name/address obfuscation... people can still reach you via email, but it's via an anonymized remail address that you can change whenever you like. And they can't see your real name or address at all, just 'WhoisGuard Protected' and the address of the registrar.

So it's both spam- and casual-snoop proof.... not everyone in the world can see who you are and where you live, but they can still reach you if there's a problem with the domain. I'm sure law enforcement has access to the full info, but I'm not too worried about them... it's identity thieves that concern me.

I bet the bloggers with more extreme viewpoints would like this too.... fewer bricks through the windows.
posted by Malor at 9:51 AM on June 20, 2005


It's just another douchebag posting his hyper-nationalistic point of view on his blog (one of 2 million+). Just because this douchebag happened to found a fairly well-known company doesn't really make this at all remarkable. Different strokes...
posted by Malachi Constant at 9:53 AM on June 20, 2005


I was going to buy a .com domain soon, and GoDaddy likely would have been my registrar. Not anymore.

This guy was abducted, imprisoned, interrogated and tortured for 3 years at Guantanamo, without any credible evidence that he did anything wrong. I've been wondering why the US public are allowing this place to exist. I guess this piece does shed some light on that.

I mean, I would truly like to see someone defend the existence of Guantanamo with factual and relevant arguments. This blog post right here however only makes me certain that the author is indeed a fucker, a fucker I will not be supporting with my money.
posted by cheerleaders_to_your_funeral at 9:54 AM on June 20, 2005


GoGitmo.com just lost my business.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 9:55 AM on June 20, 2005


Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I'm through.
posted by gwint at 9:59 AM on June 20, 2005


Definitely worth drawing attention to this. It's useful to those people who actually try not to give business to obvious scumbags. We do exist. To those who are withdrawing or withholding their business because of this: be sure to write to this war-crime-defending shitehawk and let him know why.
posted by Decani at 10:00 AM on June 20, 2005


You know, I just got a renewal notification from GoDaddy.com this morning and went to renew. I found this and decided that I needed to move my domains elsewhere. I'm bummed about this because they really have been a good fit for me. Grumble, grumble.
posted by FlamingBore at 10:01 AM on June 20, 2005


Goodbye, GoDaddy.
posted by rafter at 10:02 AM on June 20, 2005



I mean, you are absolutely allowed not to care, but to feel the need to express that desire - let alone revel in it - seems a little, I don't know, pathetic?


No more or less pathetic than to vociferously care while craning my head from side to make sure my peers are noticing how much I care.

Meanwhile, his blog's traffic goes through the roof, people are talking about GoDaddy, and he's probably picking up new right-wing customers like crazy.
posted by keswick at 10:04 AM on June 20, 2005


Oh, I missed this on preview... Joker is also good. Because they're priced in Euros, though, you have to pay for the currency conversion, which adds some cost. And because the dollar has dropped, they've gotten a bit more expensive over the last couple years.

As of about 18 months ago, their interface was functional but awkward... finding the configuration item you need can take awhile. It just didn't make logical sense to me, so every time I had to do something, I always spent a few minutes remembering how. I was still happy with them overall, but they didn't offer any method of anonymizing domains, so I switched over to Namecheap.

I much prefer Namecheap's website. It's easier to navigate and makes a lot more sense. It even comes with web demos on how to use their service and where to go to accomplish different tasks, a very nice feature.

Both registrars are good, and I don't think you'll be disappointed with either one. At the moment, for me, Namecheap has a definite edge, but Joker is very solid.

Probably the worst part about both registrars is that their names sound so unprofessional. Namecheap is barely acceptable, but JOKER? Sheesh.

Fortunately, they're much better than their name implies.
posted by Malor at 10:05 AM on June 20, 2005


Thanks for pointing this out. They'll get no business from me, either.
posted by Mayor Curley at 10:05 AM on June 20, 2005


Now I know where to spend all that money I saved boycotting the Dixie Chicks for their comments!
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 10:07 AM on June 20, 2005


Hmm,.. off to find a new domain registrar. Thinking about sending GoDaddy telling them why I'm leaving, but then I'd probably just get some bullshit about being a whiny commie pinko liberal baby or whatever the standard reply is for those with no real facts or foundations for their argument.
posted by SirOmega at 10:08 AM on June 20, 2005


Are you all going to write & tell them why you're leaving/not going with them? I think you should.
posted by jamesonandwater at 10:11 AM on June 20, 2005


I told them why I'm leaving in a comment to the post, though it hasn't made it past the mods yet.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 10:17 AM on June 20, 2005


Oh, and thanks, mr.curmudgeon.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 10:18 AM on June 20, 2005


Steve&L, you're comparing this freak's rantings to the comments made by the Dixie Chicks' singer expressing misgivings about the war in Iraq that's actually turned out to be correct?

Here's what she said, "I think people were misled and I think people are fighting a war that they didn't know they were going to be fighting," Maines said Friday on NBC's "Today" show. "And I think they were misled by people who should have been asking questions and weren't."

Sorry man, but that's a fucking trollish comment if I've ever seen one. And yes, I've seen one or two.
posted by fenriq at 10:21 AM on June 20, 2005


mr. curmudgeon: Thanks for the heads-up. Godaddy has just lost all my business, and I'll be steering everyone else away from them, too.
posted by Floach at 10:21 AM on June 20, 2005


I applaud those whose conscience requires they move their business. He's entitled to his opinion, but when he makes it a public face of his business, then those who disagree should resist complicity.

I'm not sure if I talked to Parsons or one of his minions, but as far back as 2000 I determined not to use GoDaddy for domain regs. I thought he was, how you say, "a piece of work" back then on far less grounds--this confirms it for me.
posted by beelzbubba at 10:27 AM on June 20, 2005


Presently there are over 500 prisoners there; once there were a few hundred more, but over 200 of them have been returned to their country of origin. Most of the prisoners there are “terrorists” and are, beyond any shadow of a doubt, enemies of the United States.

How can people say this? It's fucking absurd. It's a tagline for the mentally warped.

There were 700 at first, 200 were trivially rejected as innocent, but "beyond any shadow of a doubt" the other 500 are guilty as hell and deserve much torture.

I'm not old enough to remember real republicans, but has this blind faith in the government always been a characteristic?
posted by belling at 10:29 AM on June 20, 2005


Well, time to pull up stakes and find ourselves another domain registrar. Thanks for the post, 'Mudge.
posted by Triode at 10:33 AM on June 20, 2005


I was halfway through registering 3 SSL certs with them... whilst waiting for the next step to load up I checked Bloglines, read this post and stopped the transaction. Have emailed their cust service to tell them why and I entreat others to do the same.
posted by blag at 10:33 AM on June 20, 2005


Wow, fenriq.... if that was a troll you certainly took the bait.

I don't even know where to start. I idea that it is okay to boycott one person(s) for their statements but not another? Or the assertion that "misgivings about the war in Iraq that's actually turned out to be correct?"

For a member of the Reality-Based-Communtiy™ you sure are delusional.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 10:35 AM on June 20, 2005


dyndns also does domain names (yes, full service regular domain names, not just temporary redirects). I've been pleased.
posted by odinsdream at 10:44 AM on June 20, 2005


This is why you shouldn't tell anyone how you really feel about stuff.
posted by smackfu at 10:44 AM on June 20, 2005


Steve, Bob Parsons is advocating the increased torture of POWs at Gitmo. Natalie Maines was questioning the legitimacy of entering the war in Iraq. How you are equating the two is beyond me.

Maines believed that we were rushing to war based on not enough information (remember that little thing about WMDs presenting a clear and present danger to the continued existence of the USA?). Bob Parsons is saying that the tougher POWs need to be tortured more. And that there's no shadow of a doubt about their guilt, none at all. Which is, well, fucking ridiculous.

I'm delusional? Because I happen to agree with the assessment that we were led into a war on false pretenses? That BushCo wanted to wage war on Iraq and 9/11 provided them with a handy foil to whip the nation into a frenzy around even though Saddam had NOTHING to do with the 0/11 attacks? That's delusional? Then what in the fuck are you?
posted by fenriq at 10:46 AM on June 20, 2005


Whoops, 9/11 attacks, stupid speed commenting.
posted by fenriq at 10:47 AM on June 20, 2005


Um exactly what "torture" is going on there? I've seen plenty of knee-jerk reactions from people blinded by hatred of Bush (and not to mention those evil Republicans) but no proof or documentation of torture. There is a difference between harsh interrogation and torture. Acting sanctimonious over a bunch of terror suspects who are living with air conditioning, food, and more religious freedom than an the average prisoner in the US penal system gets is laughable. Last time I checked everyone of those dirtbags still had their heads attached to their bodies. The sad thing is that there are TRUE atrocities and torture happening in the world but nobody cares about them.
posted by TetrisKid at 10:48 AM on June 20, 2005


Mr. Curmudgeon: Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Although it makes no real difference to the bottom line, but I tend to avoid doing business with people/companies that support stuff I don't believe in. Parsons can believe whatever he wants and use his company's site to tell the world. I just don't have to buy his ideas or his products.
posted by birdherder at 10:49 AM on June 20, 2005


TetrisKid: If you don't believe that there's any torture going on then I'm sure you'd support the reclassification of these "Enemy Combatants" as "Prisoners of War" and therefore affording them the full rights that are provided under that treaty. Or, at least, putting video cameras into every interrogation room so that the world can verify that there's no torture going on.
posted by blag at 10:58 AM on June 20, 2005


dabitch: Nearly all of my domains are registered through joker and I've never once had a problem. Cheap as hell, too.
posted by wakko at 11:03 AM on June 20, 2005


This is why you shouldn't tell anyone how you really feel about stuff.

No, this is why you shouldn't mix your public business with your personal opinions. I have opinions, we all do. Strong ones.

But if I was running a general interest business selling say, refrigerator supplies for restaurants, I wouldn't add "End marijuana prohibition NOW!" to my business cards. It's just not the right avenue for that kind of thing and career suicide to mix politics with work and offend half your customers.

The title of his post is at the top of the godaddy.com site. That's ridiculous and very harmful for the business.
posted by mathowie at 11:04 AM on June 20, 2005


I might not agree with his opinion, and some of it is demonstrably wrong, but I don't see how this is a useful post.

Has it recently become mandatory that someone point out on each and every FPP that the post a) isn't worthy of being posted or b) isn't worded correctly?

Sheesh.
posted by leftcoastbob at 11:04 AM on June 20, 2005


i can recommend dotster.com
posted by quonsar at 11:05 AM on June 20, 2005


I ? Gitmo ... Anti-prison or pro?

"Common sense" says it's a ridiculous opinion, but I'm not quite sure.

There is a difference between harsh interrogation and torture.

Well, if you're John Yoo, torture only means extreme organ failure or death, so I guess you're right, TetrisKid. Nothing to see here. We've only tortured a few people so far.

I've seen plenty of knee-jerk reactions from people blinded by hatred of Bush (and not to mention those evil Republicans) but no proof or documentation of torture.

Don't be a jackass. Prisoner testimony obviously shouldn't be blindly accepted as truth, but to say there's no proof is ridiculous.
posted by mrgrimm at 11:05 AM on June 20, 2005


"Acting sanctimonious over a bunch of terror suspects who are living with air conditioning, food, and more religious freedom than an the average prisoner in the US penal system gets is laughable." - ( tetris ) Don't get out much, eh ?

Meanwhile, I read, over at the DailyKos that Bob Parsons is not allowing contradictory opinions on his "Go Gitmo!" thread discussion. A Kos poster said he'd spent an hour responding to each of Parson's points and that Parsons deleted the comment.

Anyway, I'm taking my business elsewhere.
posted by troutfishing at 11:07 AM on June 20, 2005


TetrisKid: The problem with "atrocities and torture happening in the world" is that they don't offer the same opportunities for self-flagellation that Guantanamo does. I find myself more in the Mark Steyn camp:

The world divides into those who feel the atrocities at Gitmo “must have been done by Nazis, Soviets in their gulags, or some mad regime — Pol Pot or others” (in the widely quoted words of Senator Dick Durbin), and the rest of us, for whom the more we hear the specifics of the “atrocities” the funnier they are.
(Mark Steyn on Democratic complaints about Guantanamo)

Still, this post is good info; anybody advocating torture is a nutcase, and Parsons and GoDaddy won't be getting any of my business.
posted by JParker at 11:09 AM on June 20, 2005


TetrisKid this is from the link I posted above:
'The seemingly interminable questioning had already lasted for hours. 'I needed the toilet,' Mubanga said, 'and I asked the interrogator to let me go. But he just said, "you'll go when I say so". I told him he had five minutes to get me to the toilet or I was going to go on the floor. He left the room. Finally, I squirmed across the floor and did it in the corner, trying to minimise the mess. I suppose he was watching through a one-way mirror or the CCTV camera. He comes back with a mop and dips it in the pool of urine. Then he starts covering me with my own waste, like he's using a big paintbrush, working methodically, beginning with my feet and ankles and working his way up my legs. All the while he's racially abusing me, cussing me: "Oh, the poor little negro, the poor little nigger." He seemed to think it was funny.'

That's one released prisoners statement, take it for what it's worth. However, the Red Cross, who as far as I know is the only organization that has been allowed to observe what's going on there, agree that torture is in fact what is going on there. Towards prisoners who have never been proven guilty of anything.
posted by cheerleaders_to_your_funeral at 11:10 AM on June 20, 2005


America did not deserve 9-11.

God really fucked up, no?
posted by The Jesse Helms at 11:11 AM on June 20, 2005


"Meanwhile, his blog's traffic goes through the roof, people are talking about GoDaddy, and he's probably picking up new right-wing customers like crazy."

I don't see the problem, since I'm a "let the chips fall where they may" kinda' guy.

As a web developer and domain manager, I'm glad to have come across Mr. Parson's rant. As a conscientious consumer who supports the idea of making informed purchases, I'm happy to have passed it along.

For every whack-job that feels it's ok to flaunt one of Powerline's "I Heart Gitmo" Tees, or wear Rush Limbaugh's "Institutional Orange Club Gitmo" apparel (Now in XXXL & XXXXL!), I'd like to believe there are a dozen others who are absolutely turned off by the moral depravity inherent in the gleeful condoning of torture.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 11:11 AM on June 20, 2005


Fenriq : I think it's fair for anyone to boycott the Dixie Chicks, GoDaddy, or any other product or service because I disagree with the views expressed by the people who own or run it. Wether the Dixie Chicks are right or wrong doesn't enter into it, it's whether people take issue with what they say and/or how they say it.

Personally it seems fine to me for an artist, someone who makes a living to express themselves, to offer an opinion in public. But then, I don't stop buying artwork, music and the like because of what the creator thinks unless it's egregious; something along the lines of advocating genocide or slavery.

For a business to express any opinion though seems rather stupid and can only lead to tears. I don't tolerate any corporation that donates money to causes I dislike or spouts crap I disagree with. Parsons gets a high mark in stupidity for posting this on the front page where it does nothing but harm. I mean, who gives a damn about his views? He should be talking about new services and low prices, not the bloody war.
posted by Vaska at 11:11 AM on June 20, 2005


The man is not the corporation, jeez.

That's like saying Disney is a Nazi company because Mr. Disney is suspected of being a white supremicist.

What someone does with their OWN PERSONAL MONEY reflects on them. It doesn't reflect on anyone else.

Get over it. Good God.
posted by shepd at 11:11 AM on June 20, 2005


Godaddy won't suffer for this. For every leftie who leaves in a huff, there'll be plenty more righties who'll line up do to business with a "real patriotic American" who not only wants to see terrorists' nuts hooked up to car batteries in sunny Cuba, but also offends the pansy liberals.

Given how he's going to reap the benefits of the current political climate of discourse in the US, the man deserves an A in marketing 101.
posted by dr_dank at 11:12 AM on June 20, 2005


Probably the worst part about both registrars is that their names sound so unprofessional. Namecheap is barely acceptable, but JOKER? Sheesh.

The name "GoDaddy" is quite stupid as well.

I'm dissapointed to see this as well. After the superbowl ad, and the money they donate to runaway teenagers I felt kind of good about working with that company, but I will definetly not re-register with them. I own like 10 domains or somethin (and just transfered over one, and purchased two others earlier today!)

Their interface has always been super-busy and confusing, though.
posted by delmoi at 11:15 AM on June 20, 2005


The man is not the corporation, jeez.

Tell that to the Sarbanes & Oxley Act, shepd.

Everyone makes choices with their money. You might buy one brand of shoes over the other because they're more comfortable. You're shopping for comfort, because it's important to you. To some people, politics is important, and that's what they shop for.
posted by odinsdream at 11:19 AM on June 20, 2005


I like the way, in the comments section, he pulls the old "hey I'm just a private citizen whose blog you're reading" chestnut

I would point out that the "tirade" you read is my personal blog. Of course, since I own Go Daddy, I guess you could infer that the two are related -- but I will tell you that they're not.

As if any personal blogger gets this sort of exposure. As if this doesn't strongly imply the relationship.


posted by jessamyn at 11:20 AM on June 20, 2005


Vaska, you are right, to a point. What Maines said was expressing misgivings about the war and is her opinion. It happens that she was right.

Parsons is saying that the tougher prisoners at Gitmo (who are proven enemies of the US) should be tortured more to get them to break, regardless of the fact that torturing POWs is illegal.

Both are opinions, one is saying that hey, maybe we should gather more evidence before entering into a war. And the other is saying, get the car battery hooked up, we're gonna juice this fucker til he talks because we know he knows something. How do we know? Well, he was captured and that makes him a terrorist. Um, yeah, okay.

shepd, it does reflect on his company when he explicitly ties his opinions into the company's image. If GoDaddy were public and I were a shareholder, I'd be demanding his being fired. If he weren't cashing in on his name by being the GoDaddy ceo then it would be just another moron blogger ranting about hurting terrorists.
posted by fenriq at 11:22 AM on June 20, 2005


The immediate 9/11 connection really jumped out at me. "America did not deserve 9/11"
Uh, yeah.. I think the number of people in the US who disagree with your #1 statement is roughly equivalent to the world population of lifelong breatharians, Mr. Bob.
As I read further I almost started to pity him.
"holding a detainee in such cold temperatures that he actually shivered, another was held in heat passing 100 degrees, some were left in isolation so long they "fouled theirselves" -- and if this wasn't enough, he told about a prisoner that was actually forced to listen to rap music. I can't help but wonder how rappers like Snoop Dog would respond to the accusation that being forced to listen to their recordings, is an unacceptable form of torture."
Discuss torture methods - check. Fail to mention that said music was allegedly played at pain threshold volumes - check. Creat straw man joke - check. Dumbass.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 11:22 AM on June 20, 2005


Clearly, Parsons thinks here is torture going on, and approves of it. I'm sad, I like the name alot, and now I have to go to somewhere else. I only wish I had a bunch of domains instead of one.
posted by Goofyy at 11:25 AM on June 20, 2005


fenriq writes "Steve, Bob Parsons is advocating the increased torture of POWs at Gitmo. Natalie Maines was questioning the legitimacy of entering the war in Iraq. How you are equating the two is beyond me.

Much as it pains me to defend Steve_at_Linnwood, I think his point is that boycotting based on distaste for one's views is just as valid when it's neocons boycotting "The Dixie Chicks" as when it's neolibs boycotting GOPDaddy.

What Steve is equating boycotting a business based on its owner's publicly stated but not business related opinions with, wait for it, boycotting a business based on its owner's publicly stated but not business related opinions.

In this case, he's correctly pointed out a tautology.

(Of course, I agree with you and "The Dixie Chicks", and I find the GOPDaddy founder's views childish and repugnant. And I'll boycott his business and not "The Dixie Chicks". But boycotting a business because of it's owner's views is either right or wrong regardless of the opinion, or else we're hypocrites.)
posted by orthogonality at 11:29 AM on June 20, 2005


no torture? A Sean Baker, a US MP was beaten pretty severly at Guantanimo during a traning excersize where he was playing a detanee.
posted by delmoi at 11:30 AM on June 20, 2005


Fenriq : Oh I don't disagree Parsons is a complete fucking moron. He and the Dixie Chicks both offer opinions, it just happens his is amazingly dumb on lots of new and interesting levels.

Jessamyn : Thanks for putting that screenshot there. When I checked the GoDaddy page I just boggled at the placement. I mean, here's a site for purchasing domains and getting server space and there's a huge link at the top condoning torture? WTF doesn't even begin to cover it.
posted by Vaska at 11:35 AM on June 20, 2005


Oh, that's just great. Moving site and domain name shortly, then.
posted by jokeefe at 11:44 AM on June 20, 2005


Meanwhile, I read, over at the DailyKos that Bob Parsons is not allowing contradictory opinions on his "Go Gitmo!" thread discussion. A Kos poster said he'd spent an hour responding to each of Parson's points and that Parsons deleted the comment.

Well, there seems to be some negative commentary in the actual thread.
Bob, I'm not sure if you have any background of service, but I do. I served as a PSYOP specialist, and later PSYOP sergeant, in the US Army's 7th POG. Let me assure you that everything I learned in my time in the service suggests that, even were it morally justifiable, torture does not work. People will say anything just to make it stop. So let's first dispense with the notion that it's necessary to torture people to prevent future acts of terror.


Far more important, and what I think you miss utterly in your commentary, is that torture is a symptom of a government that has taken a terrible wrong turn somewhere. It is shocking to me that people who claim to love America would defend it by pointing out that the torture we practice is not as bad as the torture practiced by Soviet Russia or Nazi Germany. I thought conservatives were supposed to deplore moral relativism!
---

Anyway, Bob Parsons is not a very smart person, this is obvious if you've ever read his work. I thought GoDaddy was a company that was doing some good in the world, but this is beyond the pale for me personaly. I'll transfer all my domains in 60 days (I just transfered one over today, and I've got to wait 60 days before I can transfer again) Their interface sucks too.
posted by delmoi at 11:45 AM on June 20, 2005


Well, if posting political opinions in a manner that they reflect on your business is something one might be interested in doing, then I think one ought to make an economic calculation of the effects on the market. Given the result of the last election, I suspect it makes more economic sense to say what he said than what the Dixie Chicks said.

Personally, I think it is silly to associate your business with a political viewpoint because you are halving your potential market. Then again, this consumer choice based on politics trend is probably most stupid. Cripes, I have to consider the political ideology of my webname register now? I wonder which political party Charmin supports because its important that I don't wipe my ass with a product from a company that might have people with political opinions in it.
posted by dios at 11:45 AM on June 20, 2005


thanks for the alternative hosts, you guys. switching soon.
posted by eustatic at 11:45 AM on June 20, 2005


Last time I checked everyone of those dirtbags still had their heads attached to their bodies.

Since it's now three years later with nothing like due process, I guess the fact that they're all "dirtbags" is just another of those things you're going to take on faith, huh?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 11:46 AM on June 20, 2005


delmoi, in all sincerety, I am interested in the following two sentences. There seems to be a disconnect:

Bob Parsons is not a very smart person, this is obvious if you've ever read his work. I thought GoDaddy was a company that was doing some good in the world... Their interface sucks too
posted by dios at 11:47 AM on June 20, 2005


Shepd,
" The man is not the corporation, jeez."

Would to that it 'twere so. He made his bed.

Vaska,
"I mean, here's a site for purchasing domains and getting server space and there's a huge link at the top condoning torture? WTF doesn't even begin to cover it."

This is the only reason I felt compelled to make this a FPP. Had he not directly linked his opinion piece to the front page of his company's site, those stating it's a "personal opinion" (Parsons included), may have had an argument.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 11:49 AM on June 20, 2005


Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I'm through.
posted by gwint at 9:59 AM PST on June 20


Best use of Plath quote ever.
posted by jokeefe at 11:50 AM on June 20, 2005


I know that some here think that boycotting will not matter much to the company, that...

Godaddy won't suffer for this. For every leftie who leaves in a huff, there'll be plenty more righties who'll line up do to business with a "real patriotic American" who not only wants to see terrorists' nuts hooked up to car batteries in sunny Cuba, but also offends the pansy liberals.


I agree there will be some that may sign up especialy because of this, but I also think being on the "Right" doesn't immediately indicate support of torture, and believe there will be many more people leaving GoDaddy (Left, Right and center), then signing up specifically because of the publicly pro-torture stance taken by Parson.

And count me in the camp that considers a very public statement by the founder of a company, on the company's website as an indication of the nature of the company,
posted by edgeways at 11:50 AM on June 20, 2005


Great, now I need to find a good registrar to move my 40 domains to.

Nice work, Bob.
posted by mmoncur at 11:51 AM on June 20, 2005


Now that I know what an asshole he is, I plan to move all of my site registrations somewhere else.
posted by mike3k at 11:53 AM on June 20, 2005


Last time I checked everyone of those dirtbags still had their heads attached to their bodies.

So you vote "No" on the question, "Should Americans behave better than the terrorists?" It's not really clear in your post...

We're going to just skip past what Armitage says about "due process", I'd imagine you feel it's a silly little thing anyhow.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 11:57 AM on June 20, 2005


orthogonality, I get what Steve was saying but I do maintain that there's a difference in what they said and how they said it. Parsons is using his company to help get his word out, in effect, using his company to publish his own opinions. Maines said her statements during an interview where was asked her opinion on the subject.

I have no problem with people boycotting the Dixie Chicks or GoDaddy. And I have no problem with the other Dixie Chicks being pissed off at Maines for her outspokeness just as I have no problem with people at GoDaddy quitting to find work at a less distasteful place. And boycotting them.

Nobody's asked Bob Parsons for his opinion. But he's published his opinions and is actually linking those opinions to his company's homepage so that every visitor to his corporate site will be exposed to his madness.

That said, I get the point. Both are expressing opinions and nobody is required to do business with either of them. But I do find it rather interesting that Maines turned out to be right and is still "wrong". Parsons is advocating breaking the law in the name of safety from terrorists based on his own conclusions founded on nothing more than a passing knowledge of the day's news. Its a very good thing he's not in charge. Just as its a good thing I'm not in charge either.
posted by fenriq at 11:57 AM on June 20, 2005


Dios: I don't belive that those statements contradict eachother.
posted by delmoi at 12:00 PM on June 20, 2005


dr_dank : "Given how he's going to reap the benefits of the current political climate of discourse in the US, the man deserves an A in marketing 101."

I dunno. Gain 1000 customers, lose 1000 customers...doesn't sound like bad marketing, but doesn't sound like good marketing either.

Thanks, Mr. Curmudgeon. 3 domain transfers in processing over at namecheap.
posted by Bugbread at 12:02 PM on June 20, 2005


Having his blog on the company homepage changes things a little.

In that case, he is speaking for the company. Bad Bob!
posted by shepd at 12:07 PM on June 20, 2005


I suspect it makes more economic sense to say what he said than what the Dixie Chicks said.

"At the first concert of their nation-wide tour [after Natalie Maines provoked controversy by saying, during a concert in London, that the band was 'ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas' on March 5, 2003] the Dixie Chicks received a very positive reception. The concert was held in Greenville, South Carolina on May 1 and was attended by a sell-out crowd..." [source].

"Despite (or perhaps because of) the negative publicity, [the Dixie Chick's new CD] 'Home' dominated the 2003 Grammy Awards, winning four of them, including Best Country Album. Tickets for the associated 'Top of the World' tour often sold out within hours." [source]

"This week, after all the attacks, their album is still at #1 on the Billboard country charts and, according to Entertainment Weekly, on the pop charts during all the brouhaha, they ROSE from #6 to #4. In the New York Times, Frank Rich reports that he tried to find a ticket to ANY of the Dixie Chicks' upcoming concerts but he couldn't because they were all sold out." [source]
posted by ericb at 12:13 PM on June 20, 2005


To put it simply, if he were just posting it on his own blog, it would be fine, but to link to it on the front page of Godaddy.com is dumb.
posted by drezdn at 12:14 PM on June 20, 2005


Notice that he also writes:

Senator McCain recently came out and requested that we put the detainees at Gitmo on trial. That way those that are not a threat to this country, or who may be there in error, can be returned home. I agree with Senator McCain's recommendation.

This is pretty much the view of the American center-left, isn't it? It certainly diverges strongly from the Bush administration's position.
posted by mr_roboto at 12:19 PM on June 20, 2005


mr_roboto : "This is pretty much the view of the American center-left, isn't it? It certainly diverges strongly from the Bush administration's position."

It is. The guy isn't wrong about everything (he probably has good taste in ice-cream as well), and this is one of the points that probably most folks here, on both sides, would agree with. It's one of the differences between real people and charicatures of evil. But, at least for me, it doesn't in any way make up for the rest.
posted by Bugbread at 12:24 PM on June 20, 2005


Solicited or not, the opinion or action IS the catalyst for the boycott. Regardless - I don't think the outrage began with the Dixie Chicks interview , I think it was a statement from the stage while on tour.

I think the interview quote fenriq posted earlier is more an analysis of events and motivations, and Mr. Parsons' post in an emotional gust of foul hot air, but until Bush is convicted, they are both just opinions.
posted by Jack Karaoke at 12:26 PM on June 20, 2005


Hostway is cheaper anyway, go there next time.
posted by banished at 12:27 PM on June 20, 2005


Solicited or not, the opinion or action IS the catalyst for the boycott. Regardless - I don't think the outrage began with the Dixie Chicks interview , I think it was a statement from the stage while on tour.

Thats right, one of them said "I just want ya'll to know I'm ashamed that George Bush is from Texas." Which is pretty harsh, but not "anti-american" in any way, just anti-bush.
posted by delmoi at 12:30 PM on June 20, 2005


Clearly we should just stop taking prisoners. It just makes us have to go to the trouble of switching domain registrars. Think globally, act locally and all that.
posted by BrandonAbell at 12:38 PM on June 20, 2005


Or stop torturing them. That would make all my domain registration and toilet paper purchases much simpler.
posted by Bugbread at 12:46 PM on June 20, 2005


" (all of them would love to gouge out your eyes --- and most certainly my eyes) ' Yes dear, the nasty guys are all out for you personally.
posted by arse_hat at 12:53 PM on June 20, 2005


What? GoDaddy's eyesore site, 3 pages of upsells during both registration and renewal processes (which includes at least one checked by default), and calculated-controversial Superbowl ad didn't already turn everybody off? When my domains were last up for renewal, I was already put off by the upsells, and stupid Superbowl ad. The tipping point that made me go to another registrar was the bobparsons.com post I noticed on the front page (not this particular one, as this was a month or two ago) and thought that tying in such a personal blog with the main corporate identity seemed a bit unprofessional, and that no good could come of it. Turns out I was right.
posted by zsazsa at 1:07 PM on June 20, 2005


I'd like to point out for those that considering dotster as an alternative, you will experience no customer support at all. As a customer I tried getting a response from them for months and got nothing. They have no phone support, it is all email or forum based. They would actually mark my questions as resolved and I would have to enter them again.

That said, I strongly urge anyone to make sure you can contact a live person for support at whatever company you choose to park your domains to avoid an extremely frustrating situation.
posted by john at 1:14 PM on June 20, 2005


Mr. GoDaddy would just love me ... my domain registrar is French!

€12 per year used to be really cheap, until the dollar went into the toilet ...
posted by chuq at 1:28 PM on June 20, 2005


I have 2 domains registered and hosted with GoDaddy, and after reading about this, I am now going to move my business elsewhere. I will also email them a scathing letter with the reasons why I'm leaving. Not that it will make a big difference, but I can't stay with a company that supports and advocates Gitmo, especially on their home page.

Someone should start a boycotting website, and host it with them just to be ironic.
posted by TreeHugger at 1:57 PM on June 20, 2005


4 domains registered and hosted with Bob that are in the process of moving elsewhere.

Thanks Bob, for giving me the opportunity to flex what little fucking power I enjoy these days. Your entitled to your wrong-headedness, but posting them as a heading on your corporate website that I regularly do business with crossed the fucking line.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:05 PM on June 20, 2005


Given the result of the last election, I suspect it makes more economic sense to say what he said than what the Dixie Chicks said

Well, given that Maines expressed displeasure with Bush being from her homestate, here are some current approval numbers for Mr Bush:

42% overall approval
37% approval on Iraq
39% approval on economy and foreign policy
25% on SS "reform"/"strengthening" whatever Orwellian word they chose for their fucked-up scheme

Bush is now recording all-time lows for a 2nd term president. Suck on that, admin apologists 'course, you fuckers do have control of everything for 2-3+ years still.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:21 PM on June 20, 2005


Apologies for the overuse of the f-word.
looks like this kid needs to go on a bikeride to clear the bad thoughts. C'ya!
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:25 PM on June 20, 2005


Thanks, Mr. Curmudgeon. 2 domain transfers in processing over at namecheap.
posted by darkmatter at 2:36 PM on June 20, 2005


Heywood, take a bike ride for me too. I can't get out from behind this accursed desk until 5. And I thought you needed to use the F word a few more times personally.
posted by fenriq at 2:52 PM on June 20, 2005


Delmoi mentioned Sean Baker, which I didn't know about. Here's the google news hive about it...it quite shocking.

So, nice to know that Bob and GoDaddy recommend savaging beating Americans...oh wait, they thought he was a filthy Ayrab, so it was ok to smash his head into concrete to get him to "confess".

Jayzuz, I'm just sickened by the whole thing. Gitmo, the Gitmo-cheerleaders, the constant "Fear! Fear Now!" government...I'm just sick of all of it.
posted by dejah420 at 3:05 PM on June 20, 2005


Anybody checked out if GoParsons is hosting any pro-insurgency sites?

Really appreciate all the suggestions where to move my GoParsons registered sites. Now, if we could tell which, if any, were run by other than corporate-mush-for-brains like Parsons, we'd be that much richer for the effort.
posted by telstar at 3:41 PM on June 20, 2005


ARGH! I liked GoDaddy as a Registrar, too. My 40+ domains will be moving on within the week.

Almost worse than his original post are his dozens of responses to readers' often thoughtful comments. What a smug fuck. Meanwhile, as the CEO, should he be like, maybe, ummm, WORKING or something instead of all day Monday blabbing away on his moronic blogga-wogga-ding-dong?
posted by MaxVonCretin at 4:15 PM on June 20, 2005


Civil Disobedient: See how easy activism can be?
posted by five fresh fish at 4:32 PM on June 20, 2005


The post seems to have been HEAVILY edited since it first went up.

Among other things, the title is now: "Should we close Gitmo? No way!! Remembering 9-11."
posted by Caviar at 4:56 PM on June 20, 2005


May I also suggest register4less.com? I use them a lot. Free web hosting with the domain too. Not as cheap as GoDaddy but at least they're cool guys.
posted by caporal at 5:12 PM on June 20, 2005


And here I'd just gotten my 60-days-til-expiraiton reminder. Thanks, Bob! 2 domains to someone else...
posted by RakDaddy at 5:12 PM on June 20, 2005


Has anybody noticed that Bob keeps editing the entry? Anyone happen to have the original text? It would be interesting to compare it to the "final" text in a couple of weeks when the furor has died down and he's stopped changing it.
posted by dejah420 at 5:39 PM on June 20, 2005


Oops...Caviar already posted that bit of info. Sorry, had this tab open all day and didn't read up when previewed. My bad.
posted by dejah420 at 5:41 PM on June 20, 2005


mr_roboto said:
Notice that he also writes:
[quoting Bob] Senator McCain recently came out and requested that we put the detainees at Gitmo on trial....[end quote]
This is pretty much the view of the American center-left, isn't it?


The original posting did not mention McCain, or putting the "detainees" on trial; Bob edited his posting to make himself seem more reasonable.
Some pieces in his original posting, now gone:
"Among the most infamous torture devices in the Middle East is a Syrian invention—they call it Al-Abd Al-Aswad--The Black Slave. The victim is strapped to a chair with a hole in the center. A red hot poker then rises from the hole and goes into the victim’s rectum. It goes in and out and can go as deep as the intestines. I suspect that Syrian interrogators find out rather quickly whatever it is they want to learn..."
[after the phrase "because our interrogation methods are so weak"] - "perhaps too weak."
"As a matter of fact, because the techniques are so mild at Gitmo, Mohammed al-Qahtani still, after months of interrogation has yet to tell what he knows. The information Mohammed al-Qahtani knows would have been given up in short order had he been interrogated in a Middle Eastern country."
[after the phrase "the people in those cells are our sworn enemies"]"They are lucky to be alive."
The paragraphs towards the end starting with "Our military did not turn these prisoners over..." and "Let's put the detainees at Gitmo on trial. Senator McCain..." were not in the original posting.
posted by mistersix at 5:52 PM on June 20, 2005


Here's the original version. He's completely retracting.

His latest words about how he never condoned torture are pretty ridiculous, given that the original entry has the quote, "Key prisoners at Gitmo still have not talked -- because our interrogation methods are so weak."

Pretty fun when some weblog outcry creates a backdown.
posted by tunesmith at 6:04 PM on June 20, 2005


Coincidentally, my godaddy domain will need renewing next month. I'll let them know why they lost my business. Thanks for the heads-up, mr. curmudgeon.
posted by ryanrs at 6:53 PM on June 20, 2005


That's for the heads-up, Mr. Curmedgeon! We clearly need to extirpate these scumbags with opposing viewpoints.

(Note to self for new business plan: (1) form web registrar that panders to liberal social causes; (2) get front page post on mefi; (3) cash-in.)
posted by esquire at 7:44 PM on June 20, 2005


I've had e-mail exchange with John Aravosis at AMERICAblog and he has made a post on his blog. He's looking for recommendations for other hosting sites to which he can move his domains. Recommendations are most welcome!
posted by ericb at 7:46 PM on June 20, 2005


Count me as another moving my domains. Thanks for the heads up.
posted by Staggering Jack at 7:50 PM on June 20, 2005


I appreciated GoDaddy.com before -- for their low prices and great service. Now I appreciate GoDaddy.com even more -- for understanding what is at stake and supporting appropriate measures to protect America.
posted by davidmsc at 7:55 PM on June 20, 2005


Though my respect for the founder has taken a big hit, the company itself is still good, as it treats its employees very well and I know for a fact that his views are not shared by all the employees.
posted by omnithought at 8:00 PM on June 20, 2005


tunesmith : "Here's the original version."

That version has the bit about "putting them on trial", which I don't think is in the original. Does anyone have a copy of the original for posterity?

davidmsc : "for understanding what is at stake and supporting appropriate measures to protect America."

I think you're missing an "in" somewhere there.
posted by Bugbread at 8:06 PM on June 20, 2005


Actually, now that I RTFA, I find that the headline is very misleading. Though there are a couple fo things I disagree with completely in the blog, this stands out as quite reasonable, and does not seem to condone torture at all:
"I say, instead of closing the prison at Gitmo, let's fix it. Two things could be done that would fix much of the problem. First, we should completely change our interrogation techniques to be entirely psychological and avoid those that result in physical discomfort to the detainees. Second, we should follow through with Senator McCain's request that we put the detainees at Gitmo on trial. That way those that are not a threat to this country, or who may be there in error, can be returned home.
"

posted by omnithought at 8:10 PM on June 20, 2005


Er...the problem, omnithought, is that that isn't what the article originally said. It was probably changed as a result of a few hundred people transferring out of GoDaddy (though I can't be sure that that's the cause).
posted by Bugbread at 8:13 PM on June 20, 2005


If we fix all the things that are wrong with Gitmo, why would we need to place the PoWs there any longer? Might as well have the facility on "scared American soil".
posted by slf at 8:43 PM on June 20, 2005


There are times when I surprise myself with forethought. Here is the text that I copied and emailed to myself this morning:

May we never forget the day!
I still remember the day like it was yesterday. Planes, filled with
innocent people, brutally hijacked and exploded into buildings.
Countless people (some holding hands) decided to jump hundreds of feet
to their death, rather than being burned alive by the scorching flames.
And when they landed, they unfortunately killed other people who were on
the ground trying to help.

On that day 2,819 people died. The vast majority of them were Americans,
but the death toll included citizens from 115 other nations.

Of all those brutally and senselessly murdered, only 289 of them had
their bodies recovered intact. Those who had the grisly task of digging
through the carnage, found a total of 19,858 body parts.

It was indeed, a dark day for this country. As you might guess, I'm
talking about the tragedy that struck America on September 11, 2001.

America did not deserve 9-11.
There are those that have since said we "deserved" this attack. They've
said we "had it coming". I could not disagree more. To me, saying that
we "had it coming" is the same as saying that someone deserved to be
raped - i.e., that they were "asking for it". No individual, of course,
ever deserved to be raped, and our country did not deserve to be
attacked on 9-11.

Since 9-11, we have been fortunate in that there's not been another
terrorist attack on United States soil. I think there are a number of
reasons for this. They are:

1. We've taken the fight to the terrorists in Afghanistan, Iraq and
other places.
2. The terrorists, as a result of our country's outrage and overwhelming
military response to the 9/11 attacks, are disorganized and off balance.
3. Our military and intelligence services are now proactive in hunting
down terrorist cells wherever they are and are destroying them.

To me United States' soil is sacred.
I believe that there is nothing more sacred than United States soil and
that it deserves to be protected at all costs. If there is another
country or a group who would do us harm, then we must be both smart and
tough enough to first destroy them.

Gitmo serves an important purpose in our fight against terror.
One of the most important assets we are using to protect Americans both
at home and abroad is our military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba --
"Gitmo."

The prisoners at Gitmo are America's sworn enemies.
Presently there are over 500 prisoners there; once there were a few
hundred more, but over 200 of them have been returned to their country
of origin. Most of the prisoners there are "terrorists" and are, beyond
any shadow of a doubt, enemies of the United States.

One of the Gitmo detainees is the so called "20th hijacker."
One of the detainees is Mohammed al-Qahtani, who is widely reputed to be
the 20th hijacker. However, because of an alert INS official, Mohammed
al-Qahtani was not allowed to enter our country. He did not participate
in the 9-11 massacre only because he was turned away by immigration.
Mohammed al-Qahtani was supposed to provide "muscle" for the team that
hijacked United flight number 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania. Because
of his absence, that plane was hijacked by a team of four -- not five --
terrorists. This lack of muscle may be why the hijackers on flight 93
were able to be overwhelmed by the passengers and prevented from
completing their deadly mission. The other three planes on 9-11 were
hijacked by cells of five terrorists, and each five man cell
accomplished what it set out to do. Mohammed al-Qahtani was captured by
our military in Afghanistan where he was fighting with the Taliban
against our forces.

Time Magazine's recent article.
Time Magazine recently ran a large article where it talks in detail
about the interrogation techniques our military is using to get Mohammed
al-Qahtani to talk. Some who read the article, like Dick Durbin, the
Senator from Illinois, were horrified that our military would use such
interrogation techniques.

Senator Durbin likened the actions of our military at Gitmo to those of
Nazis, Soviet gulags and the "mad regime" of dictator Pol Pot
.
I find this to be a ridiculous exaggeration and an inappropriate
comparison, as many millions perished under the crutely of each of the
regimes Senator Durbin compares us with. Fortunately, many others also
do not agree with Senator Durbin and resent his comments.

The interrogation techniques at Gitmo are very mild.
It's important to note that to date, there have been no fatalities among
the prisoners at Gitmo. Some of the "terrible" techniques we are being
decried for using in Gitmo are sleep deprivation, solitary confinement,
exposure to cold and heat (as in a cold room), mental games, constant
questioning, etc. All of it, when compared to what has been done in the
Middle East to extract information from prisoners is mild, indeed.

Interrogation techniques in the Middle East are incredibly brutal.
In the Middle East, it's not uncommon to use murder, rape, extreme
physical torture (like running a drill through a prisoner's head),
electrical shocks to the genitalia, pulling out fingernails, dripping
acid on victims, or burning victims with a hot iron or blow torch. Yes,
it's a brutal crowd that we're at war with over there.

Among the most infamous torture devices in the Middle East is a Syrian
invention-they call it Al-Abd Al-Aswad--The Black Slave. The victim is
strapped to a chair with a hole in the center. A red hot poker then
rises from the hole and goes into the victim's rectum. It goes in and
out and can go as deep as the intestines. I suspect that Syrian
interrogators find out rather quickly whatever it is they want to learn.

Senator Durbin strikes again!
In response to a hailstorm of criticism, Senator Durbin returned to the
Senate floor and re-read his earlier "Nazi" and "Soviet gulag" comments
verbatim. He then described
what he felt were
the alarming interrogation techniques being used on the detainees at
Gitmo. He mentioned holding a detainee in such cold temperatures that he
actually shivered, another was held in heat passing 100 degrees, some
were left in isolation so long they "fouled theirselves" -- and if this
wasn't enough, he told about a prisoner that was actually forced to
listen to rap music. I can't help but wonder how rappers like Snoop Dog
would respond to the accusation that being forced to listen to their
recordings, is an unacceptable form of torture.

Key prisoners at Gitmo still have not talked -- because our
interrogation methods are so weak -- perhaps too weak.
Given the type of individuals we have incarcerated at Gitmo (all of them
would love to gouge out your eyes --- and most certainly my eyes), the
interrogation techniques we are using there are incredibly mild. All of
the prisoners receive regular medical attention. In contrast, Americans
who are captured in the Middle East have their heads hacked off. The
point here is that there's just no comparison. As a matter of fact,
because the techniques are so mild at Gitmo, Mohammed al-Qahtani still,
after months of interrogation has yet to tell what he knows. The
information Mohammed al-Qahtani knows would have been given up in short
order had he been interrogated in a Middle Eastern country.

Nevertheless, vital information has been obtained from some of the Gitmo
detainees.
So even though our interrogation techniques are weak, and even laughable
by Middle Eastern standards, our military has nevertheless been able to
obtain vital information from the detainees at Gitmo. This information
has been used to save American lives both at home and abroad with
information.

Now there's a call to close Gitmo.
So it has come to light that our military has been unkind, and on
occasion, even mean to our sworn enemies being held at Gitmo. And of
course, as a result, there's now a call to shut the prison down. Of
course, those who would have us close the prison, as usual, have no
alternative suggestions. They just think it's terrible that our military
would deprive a prisoner of sleep, or allow him to get cold enough to
shiver, in order to protect our country -- so we should close the
prison.

Put cameras in their cells?
I was watching The Beltway Boys (a political talk show on Fox) this
evening. One commentator on the show even suggested that we install a
camera in each cell at Gitmo to make sure there are no abuses. Once
again, this man needs to remember that the people in those cells are our
sworn enemies. They are lucky to be alive. Instead of transferring them
to Gitmo, had we handed these detainees over to our Middle Eastern
allies, and allowed them to do the interrogation, we would have found
out whatever we wanted to know overnight. Then, of course, the
terrorists would now be a shadow of their formal selves -- assuming they
didn't die in the process. In fact, fearing this very thing (i.e., being
turned over to a Middle Eastern ally for interrogation) Khalid Shaikh
Mohammed, the terrorist who master minded the 9-11 attacks, immediately
confessed everything he knew.

Closing Gitmo would be a huge mistake.
It doesn't take a lot of thought to realize that it would be a huge
mistake if we closed Gitmo - most certainly if we did it just to be
politically correct with our sworn enemies. I, for one, support what our
military has done and is doing there. We can't lose sight of the fact
that we are indeed at war with very vicious people. We need to do
whatever it takes (within reason of course, because that's the American
way) to win this war.

What happened on 9-11 will always make me angry.
When I think about the 2,819 innocent people who were violently murdered
on 9-11, and that only 289 of them had their bodies found intact, and
that hundreds of them chose to jump to their death rather than being
absorbed by scorching flames, I'm willing to support our military in any
way I can.

If I get enough requests, I'll post the video.
After writing this article, I've once again watched a video showing
people jumping to their deaths, one after another, from the World Trade
Center. I've thought about making this video available for those reading
this blog to see. The video can be found by searching on line, but
finding it takes a little effort. If I get enough requests, I'll make it
available. I find that watching it every now and then helps me keep
things in perspective.

posted by FlamingBore at 10:27 PM on June 20, 2005


Of course I don't know if that's the original or if he'd already made changes to it.
posted by FlamingBore at 10:29 PM on June 20, 2005


LOL. Bob changed it the last line of the blurb on the godaddy homepage to "No way! Instead, let's fix it."

Seems like the clue phone rang.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 11:25 PM on June 20, 2005


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posted by kirkaracha at 12:07 AM on June 21, 2005


Bob edits his blog posts extensively. I've seen him modify his posts as he gets comments from people and takes their perspectives into consideration. And they weren't necessarily even controversial opinions. I think he starts out with his rough opinion, which might not be as well-informed as some of his commenters, and then revises it as he's persuaded by some of their arguments. It's not my style, but I think he deserves kudos for not just sticking with his original opinion reflexively.

Personally, I agree with his original post. I would, however, like to see more openness about who's there and why they're there, but I understand that such openness could dry up any intelligence they obtain.

We should do what it takes to remove these guys as threats. If they are legitimate terrorists, then they should be tried and executed. If they aren't, then they should be freed. If they were members of a foreign army, then they should be afforded POW status. Most aren't, as I understand, and so they needed some new status--hence, the enemy combatant.
posted by bbrown at 2:05 AM on June 21, 2005


bbrown: yes, if due process is followed. What we have done is far from that. We went trawling in Afghanistan, and Bureaucrat Man took over. Just think if some random "haji" we caught & released after putting him through the Due Process Mill turned out to be the next Big Killer...that would be some pretty damaging ammo for the opposing side to play with in our shitty political system. Better safe than sorry, too bad for the hundreds of innocent people caught up in our net. Protecting our thousands of people is more important than your hundreds.

Excellent dynamic we're creating. Can't we figure out that everyone we fuck over is creating 10 guys wanting to return the favor?

I was shocked to see the main military spokesman General guy in Baghdad make that damn same point we Gandhi-esque pacifists and america-haters have been making these past 2+ years ... the more people we fuck over the more enemies we will have to deal with.

We should do what it takes to remove these guys as threats.

It's that kind of all-or-nothing thinking that got us into this current mess. This administration has been an excellent learning experience that actions have consequences, and sometimes you can't unfuck a fucked situation.

Way to go, Bushites.

Most aren't, as I understand, and so they needed some new status--hence, the enemy combatant.

Yeah, well, enjoy your jihad. Hope you don't have any kids of draft age. I'll be over here laughing my ass off and/or crying over how my country is filled with bloodthirsty idiots intent on making the situation worse.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 2:41 AM on June 21, 2005


Give me a break. It's not like the guy is shooting rabbits or anything.
posted by seanyboy at 4:22 AM on June 21, 2005


The man has retracted his statement, and publicly acknowledged that he was wrong. You got what you wanted. There was a dialogue, and at the end Mr Bob agreed that you were right.

And still the MeFites are on the attack.
You're a nasty bunch of wankers aren't you?
posted by seanyboy at 4:30 AM on June 21, 2005


seanyboy : "The man has retracted his statement, and publicly acknowledged that he was wrong. You got what you wanted. There was a dialogue, and at the end Mr Bob agreed that you were right.

"And still the MeFites are on the attack.
"You're a nasty bunch of wankers aren't you?"


Er...I don't ever recall wanting him to retract his statement, or to publicly acknowledge he was wrong (well, depends what he says he was wrong about. Wrong to post it? Nah, just not too good in a business sense. His opinions were wrong/evil? Yeah, I'd be happy if he stopped wanting people tortured, but I seriously doubt that any amount of bloglash has caused him to change his mind overnight (or over 2 nights)). So I didn't "get what I want" from Bob. What I wanted is not to give my money to psychos, and by transferring my money out of GoDaddy to another registrar, I've moved from definitely giving my money to a psycho to possibly giving it to a psycho (and will probably never find out, unless the new registrar also makes some odd business decisions).

I don't know that we're "on the attack", but I guess that varies from person to person. A lot of people still think Jeffrey Dahmer is a sick fuck, even though he apologized on the witness stand for murdering and eating folks. I don't think everyone is a nasty bunch of wankers for still finding him to be a sick fuck or doubting his sincerity.

(And, no, for the record, I'm not comparing Mr. Bob to Mr. Dahmer. It was just a simple example of a situation where an apology isn't really what's needed, the sincerity of the apology is in doubt, and people not shaking hands and making up doesn't indicate nasty bunch of wankerness)
posted by Bugbread at 6:46 AM on June 21, 2005


There was a dialogue, and at the end Mr Bob agreed that you were right.

Wrong. Last I checked, he learned that military people said torture doesn't work, not that torture isn't desirable for common-sense reasons like how lowering the bar presents risks for our own future POWs.

I'm not going to bother to check his ever-changing exposition ("More Torture! Oops, Less Torture!") , but, again, last I checked he still denied anything worse than bad music and uncomfortable temperatures were our interrogation techniques.

Just your average misinformed winger. Maybe he'll learn, maybe not. Feels good to have pullled my piddly $10/mo business from him though. First positive exercise of power since, shit, forever (the first election I voted in was 2000, and that didn't turn out so well -- even the Senate candidate I voted for lost (that bitch Feinstein won over the nice moderate republican dude)).
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 6:47 AM on June 21, 2005


Oh, he also blamed the bad Iraq intelligence from the CIA on the Church Commission... ~waay~ too much Rush listening apparently. You guys really crack me up.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 6:51 AM on June 21, 2005


Torture for all! Torture for none! No, I got it: Torture for some. Tiny american flags for others!
posted by arse_hat at 9:15 AM on June 21, 2005


Man, it takes a long time for a domain transfer to go through...
posted by Bugbread at 11:31 AM on June 21, 2005


seanyboy, how is this a retraction? A retraction is when you admit guilt and soften your words. You admit to what was originally there. Mr. Parsons has eliminated parts of what he posted, so some of the comments have lost context. This is more of a "stop the presses"-style recall. I applaud him for reevaluating his stance, but I don't think doing so by removing the context for others' posts is the right thing to do.

I found fault with his words not because of his stance, but because of his phrasing and justification. If he had said that Guantanamo is effective because there's a proven advantage (psychological or otherwise) to having it in Cuba, backed up his allegations that prisoner coercion is not torture with actual documentation, and argued for continued coercion because of the continued effectiveness of information gathering, I might have paid attention and had my mind changed. He didn't argue these points. He said "they" are so much worse than us, evoked the ghosts of 9/11, and made light of any coercive methods being used, despite a lack of credentials or study on his part. Oh yeah, and he mentioned a senator who's view is definitely an outlier. In my opinion, he was too busy throwing up strawmen to actually make a point. Does he want more (alleged) torture because we need the information?

I wonder if he'd walk by a department at his company and say that they "do good work" if that group hadn't shown any gains for a while, doesn't play well with the other departments, uses questionable business methods, and causes other allied companies to view your company with distaste.
posted by mikeh at 12:51 PM on June 21, 2005


The man has retracted his statement, and publicly acknowledged that he was wrong. You got what you wanted. There was a dialogue, and at the end Mr Bob agreed that you were right.

And still the MeFites are on the attack.
You're a nasty bunch of wankers aren't you?


And you are who? "Mr Chav Naive"?
Seriously, this is not a "bad MeFites"-fight you want to make.
posted by mr.marx at 4:22 PM on June 21, 2005


"What I wanted is not to give my money to psychos, and by transferring my money out of GoDaddy to another registrar, I've moved from definitely giving my money to a psycho to possibly giving it to a psycho..."

To be fair, a psycho wouldn't thoughtfully and honestly retract statements or admit they were wrong. I think the fact that he would do so puts him many levels above the usual blather that Gitmo supporters spew forth. Bob actually thinks and reads and accepts facts that disagree with his statements, and makes corrections. That is something I find to be extremely rare in todays political "discourse", and I think he is far from being psycho. Quite the contrary, he has shown himself to be quite sane.
posted by omnithought at 4:46 PM on June 21, 2005


We'll never know whether his "corrections" are in reaction to learning facts that disagree with his statements or observing a sudden and dramatic negative reaction from the customers he needs to stay in business. Either way, he's going to end up a future case study in a How NOT to Run an Internet Business class.
posted by wendell at 5:19 PM on June 21, 2005


omnithought : "To be fair, a psycho wouldn't thoughtfully and honestly retract statements or admit they were wrong."

True, but I don't see any particularly strong evidence that his statements were retracted thoughtfully or honestly. I suspect, more than anything, it was feared loss of business that led to the changes. But I will admit that "psycho" was perhaps too strong a term, and also that if presented with evidence that he reads and accepts changes about issues he feels this strongly about, I'm willing to give him some non-grudging respect. Unfortunately, I'm pretty cynical, so in this case, in the absence of evidence that his changes are due to changes in actual opinion, as opposed to changes due to business pressures, I'm not quite willing to take that on faith.
posted by Bugbread at 5:21 PM on June 21, 2005


Well, there's a diffrence between "psycho" and "jackass".
posted by delmoi at 9:25 PM on June 21, 2005


Exactly. I have been swayed by your comments, and I retract my "psycho" comment and amend it to "jackass" : )
posted by Bugbread at 9:38 PM on June 21, 2005


heh, i just finished reading 1984 (yeah should have read it a long time ago). seems to me that the parsons dude rewriting his article is an attempt to rewrite the past. he admitted nothing and retracted nothing. his "retraction" was neither thoughtful nor honest since there never was a "retraction". it's more like: nope, didn't write it, never happened! a retraction would be to say: "i overreacted, let me ammend my opinions", or something of the sort. what he's doing is incredibly sleazy and unworthy of respect.
posted by canned polar bear at 12:07 AM on June 22, 2005


His reasons may be sketchy, but I'll accept his (recant? apology? backtrack?) because Jesus says it the thing to do.

At least he's better than this guy from a few days ago, who wrote a howler of a column claiming that Rev. Fred Phelps is a treehugging liberal. He received hundreds of comments calling him a moron, but wrote a response saying everyone else is still wrong. Read the comments for some of the lowest of the web.
posted by fungible at 7:59 AM on June 22, 2005


From the now-closed-update-thread:
Bugbread: But if someone brought it up to me (with evidence) that they were, I wouldn't continue shopping at the store.

Languagehat: But would you post it to MetaFilter?
No. I'd probably tell my friends who have similar outlooks, but that's about it. That seems like a matter of individual taste and personality, though. Is your complaint that the post was agendafilter? I took your complaint about fastidiously researching the political opinions of those you pay to be aimed at all of us who switched from GoDaddy. Was it just aimed at Heywood Mogroot?
posted by Bugbread at 8:11 AM on June 22, 2005


I think the lesson here is that controversial subjects are controversial for a reason, and it looks like Bob learned that one in a hurry. Too often, wannabe pundits spout off a quick rant when they see or hear something that sticks in their craw (in this case, Sen. Durbin's comments) without doing any other research. It certainly reveals his political leanings, and a bit of naiveté, but I think it's good that he backtracked. After all, his original point, which I think was that Gitmo doesn't compare to Nazi Germany, came out as "the interrogation techniques at Gitmo are very mild". It reminds me of Michelle Malkin making the case for internment-- it takes a really smart person to make those kinds of arguments, and smart people tend not to go anywhere near those subjects.
posted by jimmy76 at 10:28 AM on June 22, 2005


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