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The Borg, Media Matters Division, Lies about the DOJ’s Meddling with the Amazon Kindle to Try and Smear Me

by
Posted on April 14 2011 4:00 pm
J. Christian Adams is an election lawyer and former attorney in the Voting Section at the Department of Justice. He blogs about elections and the laws which affect them at www.electionlawcenter.com.

Jennifer Rubin once characterized the left wing blogosphere as the Borg.  They sometimes march in robotic lockstep, a reactionary mob seeking the enemy, incapable of individual thought with one singular purpose – destroy.  Media Matters today reminds us why that characterization is on target.

I had a piece at today’s Washington Examiner describing some of the crazy policies and hires inside the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department.  For example, the DOJ hired a person from Americans United for the Separation of Church and State to – get this – protect religious liberties.  This is one of the most hostile organizations in America to organized religion.  But that’s the new normal inside this DOJ.  One of the other things that Eric Holder’s Civil Rights Division did was foul up the debut of a new model of the Amazon Kindle reader because the blind could not use it.  It did not have Braille buttons.  Byron York broke this story at the Washington Examiner and I also mentioned it in my article today, namely “DOJ stopped the debut of the Amazon Kindle because it was not in Braille.”

Summon the Borg.

Under the headline, “Blatant Adams Lie: Obama DOJ ‘Stopped The Debut Of The Amazon Kindle’” the Borg, Media Matters Division, attack my piece.  I make a habit of largely ignoring the Borg, but this one was too good to pass up.  The Borg point out that the Kindle debuted in 2007 when Bush was President.  Caught and cornered by the Borg!

Not so fast.  The Kindle DX model is the one at issue.  And it debuted in May of 2009, right when the infamous Loretta King was at the helm of the DOJ unit.

The debut of the Kindle DX model was gummed up because the DOJ got involved in a university pilot program that would use the new Kindle DX model as a textbook platform.  The DOJ’s own press release takes credit for this: “The universities agreed generally not to purchase, recommend, or promote use of the Kindle DX, or any other dedicated electronic book reader, unless the devices are fully accessible for students who are blind or have low vision.”

Further crowing about their intervention, and successful effort to block universities from using the new Kindle DX, the press release continues:

The current model of the Kindle DX has the capability to read texts aloud, so that the materials would be accessible to blind individuals, but the device does not include a similar text-to-speech function for the menu and navigational controls. Without access to the menus, students who are blind have no way to know which book they have selected or how to access the Kindle DX Web browser or its other functions. The technological “know how” to make navigational controls or menu selections accessible is available.

The Borg seek to disassociate DOJ from the interference, instead blaming the National Federation of the Blind.  But that ignores reality.   The 1,000 pound gorilla that blocked the Kindle DX from being debuted as a university textbook platform was the Eric Holder Justice Department, not the National Federation for the Blind.  Faced with the possibility that their whole product launch to universities would be derailed, Amazon decided to redesign a product largely because of the intervention of the DOJ – the Obama DOJ, not the Bush DOJ.  The derailed product launch was the Kindle DX, which debuted in 2009, not the 2007 version of the Kindle.

It is small consolation that the Borg occasionally encounter a barely independent voice that verifies the events I wrote about.  The Borg’s reaction to my story illustrates a curious Borg rhetorical tactic perhaps borrowed from the criminal defense bar – make any wild claim and see what sticks  They probably think O.J. didn’t do it either.  Thankfully the Borg can provide some fantastic laughs, like this video with the copious references to lotion.

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