Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Bye bye Max and Stacy

[NOTE: I held off publishing this article for a few weeks to see if I would get a reply from Max and Stacy saying they had fixed the problem that does not allow me to post comments on their site.]

It's funny how things work out online. I started out as a big fan of Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert over at MaxKeiser.com. What happened?

I'll tell you what happened. I was suddenly and inexplicably blacklisted from commenting on their website. I'm sure you'll agree that's kind of a big insult and slap-in-the-face in the online world if it's done intentionally, but I'm sure you'll also agree that there are all kinds of technical issues that could cause something like this to happen unintentionally. And I have absolutely no reason to believe that this was done intentionally.

So I made repeated pleas for help to Stacy and Max to restore my commenting privileges. I exchanged multiple emails with Stacy on the subject. (Max doesn't usually reply to emails.) Despite her best efforts, the problem was not fixed.

Finally Stacy suggested that the problem was not a local problem with the MaxKeiser website, but a problem with the spam filter which is a service provided by Akismet. If what she was suggesting was true then that would lead me to be banned from commenting not only on MaxKeiser, but also on many Wordpress blogs and other sites that use Akismet as a spam filter.

So I contacted Akismet and after running a simple test, it was determined that they were not the cause of the problem. I let Stacy know the results, but she just (virtually) threw her hands up in the air and said there was nothing she could do about it. In the process she accused me of "threatening" her because I said that if they were unable to fix this problem, that I would no longer be able to support their site.

It's kind of like my saying to Toyota that if they don't fix their problems with cars that accelerate out of control leading to crashes and deaths, that I'm not going to buy any more of their cars. (I don't own a Toyota by the way, I buy strictly cars from American manufacturers.) That seems like a reasonable reaction that most people would have. You either fix your product or I'm going to take my business elsewhere.

I would hardly call that a "threat". Here's the definition of "threat" for reference:
a statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done
I guess I should feel flattered in a way to think that somehow my lack of endorsement of MaxKeiser.com could cause some sort of "damage" to Max and Stacy. For all the lack of manners when attacking others displayed by many on the web (including you - Stacy and Max), most people online remain amazingly thin skinned when they feel somehow insulted.

But then maybe they should feel threatened because Future News Today does appear on the first page of results on a Google search for "Max Keiser YouTube". It's true. I wrote a very flattering article about Max and Stacy back in April 2009 and it became fairly popular. Someone even "tweeted" it.

But that was long ago and Max and Stacy have become ever more popular since then. They attract hundreds of comments to every post. (And yes I'm envious.) They even have a new show on Russia Today.

Maybe this is a sign that in the "Year of the Tiger" it's time for me to move on. I mean, I could practically do the MaxKeiser show myself. I pretty much know what he will say before he even says it. And it does get frustrating after a while to here people speak the truth about the criminal fraud perpetrated by the Wall Street cabal over and over again, and yet nothing changes. Geithner has not even been fired. So it does feel as if Max and the rest of us have been pretty ineffective in our criticisms.

Of course I don't have any economic stake in this fight. I have never had any ads on my site, so I'm not making a nickel off this. For Max and Stacy, it's a way of making a living. I don't begrudge them that, it's just a fact. If I don't feel like their have been any significant developments to report, then I just don't post. Whereas Max and Stacy have to continually come up with new material to fill in their various shows.

Fortunately for them, there have been plenty of new economic developments of the "gloom and doom" variety which they specialize in. The latest of course being the problems in Europe - especially Greece. And Goldman Sachs seems to be everywhere at once whenever it comes to sleazy - if not criminal - business dealings which inevitably cause the rest of us to have to pay up for their crimes. (While they continue to get record bonuses with the blessings of President Obama.)

Maybe it's time to start paying more attention to humanitarian issues like the plight of the Haitians devastated by the earthquake, or the conditions of people living in Gaza a year after Israel's brutal assault. Or the horrible dilemma that the people of Afghanistan have been put in, with the never-ending American occupation of their country and the resulting corrupt puppet government of Karzai.

Finally, I'd be more than happy to be welcomed back into the family over at MaxKeiser.com, but I'm not holding my breath. Too bad the internet can't be like Fantasy Island, where there is always a happy ending.

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