The "Walter Murphy" Story Takes Off:
We still don't know why the name "Walter Murphy" was put on the No-Fly list. But meanwhile the story has raced around the blogosphere in the last 24 hours, drawing links from hundreds of blogs and spiking Balkinization's traffic today to about 40,000 hits by 3pm. As you might have guessed, most of the blogs that link to the story have simply assumed it is true that the name was put on the list to punish Professor Murphy for his speech.

  UPDATE: Ryan Singel, a reporter who has written extensively and critically on the No-Fly list for Wired News (see past stories here, here, and here), is highly skeptical about the story. From a post at Wired's Threat Level blog:
[I]t's 99.9 percent sure the good professor isn't on any government watchlist for giving a speech. I have no idea why the counterperson would say that individuals are put on the list for joining anti-war protests, but that's just not true. . . .

Woe be it for this blog to defend the country's foolish watchlist system, but after having spent more than four years reporting on watchlists, filing Freedom of Information Act requests, and talking with persons flagged by the lists, I have never seen a single case of a person being put on the list for activities protected by the First Amendment. Feel free to drop any proof you might have via email or in the comments. . . .

I'm open to any evidence that the government has watchlisted American citizens for exercising their Constitutional rights, but I've never seen it.
  That's very helpful to know.