Overheard on CNN.com: Social media didn't cause UK riots, people did!
Suspected rioter David O'Neill leaves court Thursday in London after posting bail on charges, including aggravated violence
August 12th, 2011
04:57 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Social media didn't cause UK riots, people did!

Comments of the Day:

"Well now, isn't that a remarkably fascist comment by the prime minister."–jkINC

"Unfortunately, he does represent the people, who always give up freedom when they hear the word 'safety,' starting with speeding cameras, ending with Internet censorship."–Firstboss

British PM proposes social media ban for rioters

British Prime Minister David Cameron called in representatives of Twitter, Facebook and Research in Motion - makers of BlackBerry - to discuss how social media were used to facilitate the UK riots. "When people are using social media for violence, we need to stop them," Cameron said Thursday during an address to Parliament.

Bad idea, said most CNN.com readers. Blackspeare said, "It would be better for the UK PM to look within rather than without for the root cause of the riots." Spearco said, " 'Shut down social media' is what you would expect from China, not England." wxmyjnsn said, "WOW! Blame social media instead of your own incompetence, a novel idea. Just how did all those riots in the past get organized?"

Greekgeek said, "The people who were organizing all this, as the Guardian quickly discovered, were using BlackBerrys to text each other directly, not social media like Twitter, Facebook. But don't let facts get in the way of trampling on the rights of others!"

truthordare said, "How appropriate that when a government feels threatened, the first reaction is to try to kill free speech. This is the danger in electronic media. It can be controlled." But DenverRalphy said, "Freedom of speech allows for criticism of government without fear of reprisal or censorship. It doesn't extend to incitement of criminal or violent behavior."

mklsgl said, "Facebook, Twitter, et al.: Anti-Social Media."

Are Republicans at war with reality?

John Avlon, senior political columnist and author of "Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe Is Hijacking America," summarized the ideas he heard during the GOP debate Thursday night, among them: "States' rights should rule the day, unless you're gay," and "Loyalty oaths should be the new normal." Nonetheless, he concludes, given the economy, it's possible one of the people onstage Thursday night could be the next U.S. president.

TammyLee2 said, "Obviously John Avlon is so out of touch with mainstream America. He has no idea what 'reality' is anymore." Jilli disagreed. "I watched the debate - or at least as much as I could tolerate. What planet are these people living on? Sharia law? The lightbulb choice amendment? I can't laugh; weeping would be more appropriate."

GBfromOhio said, "I watched much of the debate with my jaw dropped in disbelief at the disingenuous attempts to pander to the wealthy and the intolerant based solely on the seductive desire to be POTUS. God help us all if one of these folks get elected."

agoodsong said, "Well, well, John. You must have felt like a 10-year-old at the county fair shootin' an air gun at those little ducks as they rode by. Shooting air at these laughable candidates won't necessarily win you a Pulitzer but it will definitely reveal that even you 'don't get it.' The Grand Ole Party is no more: Call it the Grand NEW Partea. Boehner missed his chance to tell Harry and Barack 'NO DEAL'. Now he'll miss his chance to continue as leader. Tea party's comin', John, and it ain't gonna be pretty. Last year it was the Dems. Next year, it'll be the Grand OLD Boys voted out."

fearless68 said, ""What's odd is that the media is not reporting that Ron Paul won the debate by an overwhelming margin last night. The media is trying to push Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann out there as American favorites even though they are very unpopular." theoilman said, "Huntsman actually seems like a relatively sane candidate if he wasn't just as obsessed at no-compromise fiscal policy as the rest of them."

Voice1 asked, "Why don't the debate hosts ask the candidates what they will do specifically to create jobs, instead of letting them get away with saying they will focus on a jobs agenda? No one knows what their jobs agenda looks like." Voice1O said, "A common theme was war on EPA. I do not want USA to be like China, just because it makes it cheaper to produce goods. As a citizen, I need someone (EPA) to make sure that I do not have pollutants in my neighborhood." Sonoman said, "Two words you didn't hear last night: 'middle class.'"

Postal Service asks Congress to allow 120,000 layoffs, overhaul benefits

According to documents obtained by CNNMoney, the United States Postal Service is appealing to Congress to remove collective bargaining restrictions in order to lay off 120,000 workers. It also wants Congress to approve the replacement of postal workers' existing government health care and retirement plans.

GeneralTarfu said, "Other nongovernment mail services seem to be doing quite well." cuseguy replied, "Because they charge 10,000% more. Feel free to pay 20 bucks to UPS to deliver the same thing the post office does for less than a buck."

paratrooper said, "The post office should be run like a business. I do not know of a business that can stand to repeatedly lose billions of dollars a year and still keep their doors open." gce1356 replied, "The USPS has never been a business. It has always been a service. Given that it has to deliver mail to every little rural hamlet and mailbox, expecting it to turn a profit like a business is ridiculous. Trim some fat when necessary, but don't expect it to always turn a profit."

Reason2012 said, "The post office should go to a three-day delivery (Monday, Wednesday, Friday). With e-mail, UPS, FedEx and online bill pay there is no longer a need for six-day delivery service." ranger4ever said, "End Saturday delivery and raise prices for delivery to logistically unpractical locations to match those of other private package services! Also, have real-time tracking. I recently sent a package to a small Alaskan city with only small airplane mail service. FedEx and UPS wanted more than $150, and USPS was under $30! I like all the people at my post office, and don't begrudge them for making $45,000 and getting benefits. You've always shown me respect."

Steve1959 said, "When Katrina hit New Orleans, I didn't see little e-mails out there delivering care packages or FEMA checks nor a UPS or FedEx truck around. What I did see was a postal carrier paddling down the street to get those checks and packages delivered as best as he could. I saw the postal service develop a whole system almost overnight to ensure mail delivery to those who were dislocated. I've seen numerous reports of carriers saving people's lives."

21stCenturySLC, replied to a comment that postal service workers receive "Cadillac insurance and retirement plan, and I'm sure they contribute almost nothing to them", saying:

"Check your facts before you post! Postal workers pay for their portion of health insurance just like employees in the private sector, and their 401(k) plans are no more generous. I cringe when I look at my spouse's paycheck and see all the deductions. What's left from his hard physical work on the street each day - typically 10 hours making 500-600 deliveries in the hot sun, the snow and rain, dodging cars, bikes and kids, dealing with angry customers - is appalling and sad. It's not really 'Cadillac,' just a job."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Kelly Kennsington


    The place that the rich don't want you to know about.

    Google the term "SIMPLE STOCK CASH" and click on the #1 ranked site! Go to the Penny' Stock section to find out what the rich do not want you to know.


    August 12, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
  2. justathought

    It's evil human nature: when anything goes wrong, find something, or someone else to blame it on.

    August 12, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Bond, James

    The London rioters did it for England.

    August 12, 2011 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
  4. justathought

    @Bond, James explain, or is that just sarcasim?

    August 12, 2011 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
  5. George Patton

    What caused the riots in Great Britain this past week was the grinding poverty and hopelessness among the young minority groups there but the right-wing politicians like David Cameron there as the ones here in America just don't care. They just want to pass the buck, so to speak!

    August 12, 2011 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
  6. john

    But it was all good when Egypt, Syria, Libya all used it for their riots. Obama and the UN even hailed it as the Arab Spring.

    August 12, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |

      But then again john, Obama and the UN are staunch believers in a double standard. In fact, Barack Obama is currenty engaged in Yemen's civil war in order to keep that cursed Ali Abdullah Saleh in power with the use of those ungodly drones and our naval firepower. How disgusting indeed!!!

      August 12, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. gung hoe

    Any guess when that will happen here I get first week of october of 12

    August 12, 2011 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  8. banasy©

    What disgusting is the same troll hijacking every thread and making it a rant against the conservatives.
    Please, just shut up.

    August 12, 2011 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  9. banasy©

    @gung hoe:

    You have a pool going?

    August 12, 2011 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mad Hatter

    Good post banasy,thank you.

    August 13, 2011 at 12:02 am | Report abuse |
  11. william smith

    Why is CNN , still calling them UK riots? They are Englands riots, England is only one of 4 countries in UK. So come on CNN , don't tar us all with the same brush. The BBC was forced to stop calling them UK riots.

    August 13, 2011 at 6:21 am | Report abuse |
  12. Bond, James

    @ justathought:
    That, love, was sarcasm, but not "just sarcasim," (sic) as you wrote, with a whiff of mixed jokes that you may not have heard.
    I would also say that they did it "to" England.
    I'm happy to see that America is sending some advice for the police over there.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:06 am | Report abuse |
  13. Bond, James

    Not banasy at 9:49.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:08 am | Report abuse |
  14. Bond, James

    The PM's comment was not fascist.
    It was the comment of an aware and civilized person.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:46 am | Report abuse |
  15. The Måd Råp3r

    Cameron is a moron of George W Bush proportions who spent half the riots jacking off on a beach. It was funny watching him backpedal when the police counterspänked him though. Good luck with 1984 Britfriends. We're getting there across the pond with the SF subway mobile phone shutdown to head off the BART protests. Corporations and The Man goose-stepping together into the future wearing spiffy unforms and jackboots.

    August 13, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
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