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Latest Featured Reports | Saturday, November 18, 2017
Pelosi's Misguided Anti-Impeachment Calculus
When needed to prevent catastrophe and preserve the rule of law, as Ernest Canning argues, impeachment is both a necessity and a superior political strategy...
Of Pipelines, Tax Cuts, and Corrupt Trump Appointments: 'BradCast' 11/17/17
It's astonishing how many GOP policies, practices and nominees must be pushed through by force, scheming, lying and the breaking of norms and traditions...
Recall Effort for GA SoS After Election Disasters, 'Server Wipe': 'BradCast' 11/16/17
Guest: John Ziegler of 'Voice for All GA'; Also: Keystone Pipeline spill; House passes tax bill; Menendez mistrial in NJ; Moore tanking in AL...
'Green News Report' 11/16/17
  w/ Brad & Desi
AK's National Wildlife Refuge now one step closer to oil drilling; African-Americans bear brunt of fossil fuel pollution; PLUS: France to cover U.S. funding for U.N. climate science...
Previous GNRs: 11/14/17 - 11/9/17 - Archives...
Chilling Senate Hearing on Presidential Use of Nukes: 'BradCast' 11/15/17
Guest: Nuclear analyst Stephen Schwartz: Also: Dems win in OK; Moore madness in AL; Details on N. Cal shooting...
Ready to Step Up? It's 'National Run for Office Day'!: 'BradCast' 11/14/17
Guest: Ross Morales Rocketto of 'Run for Something'; Also: Another mass shooting at an elementary school...
'Green News Report' 11/14/17
US a bit schizophrenic at U.N. climate talks; Paris Agreement targets not nearly enough; Fossil fuel lobbyist approved for top EPA post; PR damages nearly $95B...
New Assault Claim Against Moore, More Trouble for GOP: 'BradCast' 11/13/17
Callers ring in on latest developments, allegations plaguing Alabama's 'conservative' 'Christian' U.S. Senate nom...
Moore Sunday Toons
Moore, Moore, Moore...How do ya like it? How do ya like it? Moore, Moore, Moore! And then still more in PDiddie's latest toon collection...
Real Moore News and More Real News: 'BradCast' 11/10/17
(And real news about fake news!) Also: Trump/Kobach Election Comm. sued by own Commissioner!...
'Green News Report' 11/9/17
US now alone on climate denial; Cities, states picking up slack; Now a 'Blue Wall' for climate action in West; PLUS: Ozone hole smallest ever, after global treaty...
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(All times listed as PACIFIC TIME unless noted)
Media Appearance Archives...
'Special Coverage' Archives
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

'Fired' Sproul Group 'Cloned', Still Working for Republicans in At Least 10 States
The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

FINALLY: FOX ON GOP REG FRAUD SCANDAL
The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

COLORADO FOLLOWS FLORIDA WITH GOP CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
Repub Sec. of State Gessler ignores expanding GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, rants about evidence-free 'Dem Voter Fraud' at Tea Party event...

CRIMINAL PROBE LAUNCHED INTO GOP VOTER REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL IN FL
FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

Brad Breaks PA Photo ID & GOP Registration Fraud Scandal News on Hartmann TV
Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
The GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal reveals insidious nationwide registration scheme to keep Obama supporters from even registering to vote...

CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

RICK SCOTT GETS ROLLED IN GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
Breaking coverage as the RNC fires their Romney-tied voter registration firm, Strategic Allied Consulting...

RNC FIRES NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM FOR FRAUD
After FL & NC GOP fire Romney-tied group, RNC does same; Dead people found reg'd as new voters; RNC paid firm over $3m over 2 months in 5 battleground states...

EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
After fraudulent registration forms from Romney-tied GOP firm found in Palm Beach, Election Supe says state's 'fraud'-obsessed top election official failed to return call...

GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
State GOP fires Romney-tied registration firm after fraudulent forms found in Palm Beach; Firm hired 'at request of RNC' in FL, NC, VA, NV & CO...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...

Unanimous Recommendation by 8 Staffers, Including Head of Voting Rights Division Ignored!
As With Georgia Photo ID Case, Bush Makes Mockery of Voting Rights Act, Ranking Democrat Calls for House Judiciary Committee Investigation
By Brad Friedman on 12/2/2005 12:56pm PT  

Washington Post, in a stunning front page splash today, is reporting that political appointees in George W. Bush's Dept. of Justice overruled their own attorneys in the Voting Rights Act unit who had recommended against Texas' state redistricting plan for Congressional districts. That new redistricting plan was key to former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's (R-TX) controversial strategy in the state which eventually resulted in 7 additional Republicans being elected to the U.S. House in 2004.

Eight staffers at the DoJ, including the heads of the Voting Rights Division, advocated against the redistricting in a 73-page memo, but Bush political appointees agreed to allow the changes to go through anyway! The Voting Rights Act requires DoJ pre-approval of changes to electoral law in several states where minority voting rights have historically been an issue.

According to WaPo, "The Justice Department memo recommending rejection of the Texas plan was written by two analysts and five lawyers. In addition, the head of the voting section at the time, Joseph Rich, wrote a concurring opinion."

The disturbing revelation is similar to one reported two weeks ago, based on another yet leaked memo reported by WaPo's Dan Eggen, in which the Bush Attorney General is shown to have overruled 4 of 5 staffers who had recommended against pre-approval of Georgia's new Photo ID requirement at the polls. That law has since been struck down by Federal Courts which described it as a "Jim Crow-era Poll Tax."

The Bush administration has made a mockery of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which celebrated its 40th anniversary over the summer. Several key clauses of the Voting Rights Act will be coming up for renewal authorization by Congress in 2007. It was reported some time ago that George W. Bush was "not familiar" with the VRA when asked about his support for its renewal during a meeting with several minority legislators in the summer prior to the 2004 election.

In 2003, Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), the ranking member of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, had requested review of the documents now revealed by WaPo. He was met with "a cold response" at the time from the DoJ according to a just-issued press release (posted in full below). He is now calling for a full investigation by the Judiciary Committee into both the Texas and Georgia matters.

The following is from an AP summary of the WaPo's report [emphasis added]:

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales defended the Justice Department's decision to ignore staff lawyers' concerns that a Texas redistricting plan orchestrated by former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay would dilute minority voting rights.

A Justice Department memo released Friday showed that agency staffers unanimously objected to the Texas plan, which DeLay pushed through the Legislature to help elect more Republicans to the U.S. House.

Senior agency officials, appointed by President Bush, brushed aside concerns about the possible impact on minority voting and approved the new districts for the 2004 elections.
...
Of the state's 32 House seats, Republicans held 15 before the 2004 elections. Under the DeLay-backed plan, Republicans were elected to 22 of the state's seats in the House.
...
Because of historic discrimination against minority voters, Texas is required under provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to get Justice Department approval for any voting changes it makes to ensure the changes don't undercut minority voting.
...
Eight department staffers, including the heads of the Voting Rights Division, objected to the redistricting map, according to the memo which was first reported in Friday editions of The Washington Post.

[Gerry] Hebert [, who has been challenging the ruling] said when a case is a close call staff lawyers usually include counterpoints to their conclusions in their memo. But he said there is nothing in the 73-page memo suggesting a plausible reason for approving the map. "So that raises a lot of suspicions about the motives" of the senior officials who are political appointees, he said.
...
"The fact that the White House has covered up this document for so long provides a smoking gun pointing out efforts, led by Bush political appointees and Tom DeLay, to systematically cripple the voting rights of minorities," said Texas Sen. Leticia Van De Putte, one of the Democratic lawmakers who fled to New Mexico to thwart passage of the redistricting plan.

The WaPo report adds:

Mark Posner, a longtime Justice Department lawyer who now teaches law at American University, said it was "highly unusual" for political appointees to overrule a unanimous finding such as the one in the Texas case.

"In this kind of situation, where everybody agrees at least on the staff level . . . that is a very, very strong case," Posner said. "The fact that everybody agreed that there were reductions in minority voting strength, and that they were significant, raises a lot of questions as to why it was" approved, he said.

The full memo is available on the WaPo site here [PDF].

UPDATE: MSNBC Video of WaPo's Dan Eggen discussing story...

Conyers' just-released call for an investigation into the matter follows in full...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




State Stacks Panels, Invitees With E-Voting Proponents!
RAW STORY Report Confirms, Adds Many Details to Information Previously Reported by BRAD BLOG
By Brad Friedman on 12/1/2005 2:55pm PT  

RAW STORY's Miriam Raftery opens up on the scam apparently being perpetuated by California Sec. of State Bruce McPherson in what appears to be a last-minute effort to quickly re-certify Diebold's TSx touch-screen voting machines in California as the Jan 1, 2006 deadline for the Help America Vote Act looms.

A recent "Voting Systems Testing Summit" convened last week by McPherson in Sacramento appears to have been purposely rigged by the SoS's office to tilt strongly towards the presentation of information that supports the return of Diebold's buggy and unsecured voting machines to the state.

As reported by Raftery...

"This smacks of Dick Cheney meeting with the energy companies and locking out opposing interests of environmental groups," Sherry Healy, a member of the California Election Protection Network steering committee, told RAW STORY. "Diebold and other vendors selling electronic voting equipment have been invited to attend, along with all 400 members of the California Association of Election Officials," she said. "It costs one hundred and seventy five dollars a ticket and will be picked up by the state."

A massive public test of the machines held over the summer by Republican McPherson revealed that 20% of the Diebold machines had failed to perform properly (RAW STORY lists the number as 30%). But a subsequent test held privately, using machines specially prepared by Diebold gave only a reported 3% error rate.

Amonst the nuggets uncovered in Raftery's report is this information from Diebold spokesperson, David Bear:

In an interview Monday with RAW STORY, Diebold spokesman David Bear revealed, California's "recommendation is to certify the equipment as reviewed." Bear said McPherson's staff made a recommendation to recertify the Diebold TSX system before hearing public testimony, based on a review of the new test results.

Bear had recently lied in an interview with The BRAD BLOG when he at first claimed that Diebold's Central Vote Tabulator "isn't accessable via modem." When pressed further, he was later forced to admit that it was. He also claimed to be unaware of a "Cyber Security Alert" issued by a branch of the US Dept. of Homeland Security prior to last year's Presidential Election warning about the security vulnerability in Diebold's tabulation software.

Raftery outlines the overwhelming imbalance of the assembled panelist for the event last week where Voting Rights and Election Reform activists were largely shut out. That, despite a conversation The BRAD BLOG had just last Monday live on air with a spokesperson from the SoS office who had denied the allegation. The full audio and text transcript of that live on-air interview on KRXA 540am in Montery, CA is posted here.

Raftery found much evidence suggesting the heavily weighted pro-Electronic Voting factions and the apparent lock-out of Election Reform and Voting Rights advocates at the summit. For example, Raftery reports on several of the panelists who were allowed to attend and speak on the matter:

[Dr. Brit] Williams has been an outspoken defender of electronic voting. As a NIST [National Institute for Standards and Techology] participant, he stated that "adding a paper 'receipt' could have an adverse effect." He also served as a state evaluator of Diebold machines in Georgia, where he allowed installation of a patch not certified by testing labs...Williams later admitted, "Some of the things we did, we probably compromised security a little bit."

And more like the above:

[Donnetta] Davidson is a commission on the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC). As Secretary of State in Colorado, she faced embarrassment over her leadership in the Elections Center, a nonpartisan state office that accepted donations from e-voting companies at the same time that it touted their machinery.

Meanwhile, reformers and activists from California Elections Protection Network (CEPN), for example, were entirely shut out from even attending --- much less presenting! --- at the summit:

When several members of CEPN applied for admission, they were denied - despite the fact that the event was not yet full. Correspondence from the Secretary of State's office denying the request has been posted at the CEPN website.

"We offered to pay a fee," Healy said of the invitation-only event. "They assured us that our views are being represented."

But after reviewing a list of attendees, CEPN found no activists and only three computer experts with views compatible with CEPN's election reform goals. "Panels are stacked so as to be heavily pro-Diebold," Healy noted. "Our side is heavily outnumbered."

The letter referred to above, from the SoS's office, as posted on the CEPN website says:

Date: Thu, 10 Nov 2005 20:30:21 -0800
From: “McDannold, Bruce” bmcdanno@ss.ca.gov

To: [XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX]

Thank you for your interest in the Summit on voting system testing. We invited elections officials from across the country to participate, since this is a Summit designed specifically to discuss state-level testing of voting machines and to develop a best practices document on that specific subject. We've had a very good response; registrations are filling up fast so we are having to limit attendance to those already invited. The panels and panelists reflect the widest array of credible views, from outright skeptics to industry. Interested parties are encouraged to contribute written documents to the Summit to be reviewed as part of the final recommendations for testing to the states. They should send their written input to VotingSystemComment@ss.ca.gov.

States and counties around the country are keeping a close eye on the decision soon to be made by California which is, as Diebold regards it, the country's largest "voting market." What happens in this state, may well effect the decisions made by countless Boards of Elections around the country as they all face the impending deadline to receive federal funding for upgrades to their election systems.

Be sure to read RAW's full story for much more!

To submit your own comment to the CA Sec. of State, visit http://www.ss.ca.gov/elections/elections_vs.htm, call (916) 653-6814 or email votingsystemcomment@ss.ca.gov.




Former NY Times 'Reporter' 'Apologizes' in BBC Interview
Video and Audio of BBC's Exclusive Interview with Miller
By Brad Friedman on 12/1/2005 12:48pm PT  

Good lord is this woman a whack-job or what? From the BBC coverage of an upcoming interview with Judith Miller. Her "apologies" for helping lead the drumbeat that resulted in an endless war and thousands dead and wounded for life:

She said: "I'm deeply sorry our intelligence community got it wrong.

"I am deeply sorry that the President was given a national intelligence estimate which concluded that Saddam Hussein had biological and chemical weapons and a active weapons programme."

I'm deeply sorry the NY Times decided to destroy their own once-great reputation by giving this loon a paycheck. Ever.

And if the above is not pitiable enough, she reportedly admits that Scooter Libby was one of her sources for the Plame leak (didn't she tell us previously she couldn't remember who told her?) but when asked if Karl Rove was also a source, she tells BBC:

"I can't talk about the specifics of this case as I might be a witness in a criminal trial."

Huh? I'm no legal eagle, but is there some kind of law that prevents a witness to a crime from telling the press what they know about the crime?

Does this woman think that an interview she gives to the BBC won't make it aaaall the way back here across the pond?

She lost her job, and now --- it seems --- she's lost her mind. Or did that happen in the reverse order? Good lord...

{Update from David Edwards: Here's the video and audio of BBC's exclusive interview with Judy Miller.}

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...
Audio in MP3 format...

Update #2: A transcript of the Miller interview is available at Why Are We Back in Iraq?




Claims, Without Proof, His Own Personal Info Was Posted Online by Critics
Bill O'Reilly, Who Complained About Others Posting 'Private' Info Online To Have Coulter as Guest on Tonight's 'O'Reilly Factor'...
By Brad Friedman on 12/1/2005 12:45pm PT  

Former homosexual male prostitute cum disgraced former White House correspondent, James "Jeff Gannon" Guckert has decided to ring in in support of Ann Coulter's recent posting of private information of a BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger on her website.

It's been three days since Coulter posted a personal email address and phone number of author and actress Lydia Cornell on the front page of her website. The petulant act by the Republican talking head was in apparent retaliation for an article written for BRAD BLOG by Cornell which described her experience in trying to track down a copy of a fundraiser address Coulter had given recently for the Alachua Florida Republican Party in which she called for the repression of free speech by Democrats.

Cornell has received myriad threatening emails and crank callers in the three days since Coulter posted her private information online. She has asked Coulter to remove it and Coulter has so far refused.

In support of Coulter's invasion of Cornell's privacy, Guckert/Gannon, a shill who had worked in the White House for GOPNews.com until his secret background as a prostitute was exposed, attempted to defend the Rightwing polemicist yesterday on his website by claiming:

Funny, these same folks didn't have any problems publishing my phone number, home address, Social Security number and medical records online...

Gannon/Guckert presented no evidence to back up his assertion. His reported presence at the White House more than two dozen times when no press briefings were scheduled --- as described in Secret Service documents obtained by RAW STORY --- has never been explained. Gannon/Guckert had no previous journalistic experience before being granted access as journalist to the White House.

Of course, The BRAD BLOG has never posted any such information, as claimed by Guckert/Gannon, but we checked in today with John Aravosis who was instrumental in uncovering the Guckert/Gannon scandal when it first appeared on his AMERICAblog website. He was the first to post links to Gannon's several military-themed gay escort websites (including MilitaryStud.com and MaleCorps.com) featuring full frontal nude photos which Guckert/Gannon had posted of himself online.

Aravosis, who followed the story as close as anybody, tells The BRAD BLOG that he's unfamiliar with anybody having ever published Gannon/Guckert's phone number, home address or medical records anywhere on line. Though he says that when he was alerted to a commenter at AMERICAblog having posted what appeared to be Gannon/Guckert's Social Security number in the comments section, he removed it immediately.

Aravosis strongly disagreed with Gannon/Guckert's claim. "We never knew where he lived. We still don't!" Aravosis told us. "We never had his phone number. Nobody did as far as I know. All the top journalists that I know of had to contact him by email since he never gave his phone number to anybody!"

"As to his medical records," he continued, "The only records we tried to find was his military records because he said he was a marine...and it turned out he was lying!"

Aravosis draws the difference between his work uncovering a phony journalist in the White House being "outed" by his own online websites featuring his own nude photos with what Coulter has done to Cornell.

"It's kind of creepy," he said, "posting someone's personal phone number. When I saw his Social Security number come up in comments, I deleted it immediately. But Coulter is purposely posting that information herself on her own website. I've never used anybody's home information...that's just creepy."

On her website today, Coulter claims she will be appearing tonight on Bill O'Reilly's The O'Reilly Factor.

As Cornell pointed out in her initial public response to all of this, O'Reilly had slammed the Media Matters watchdog organization when he claimed they "violated privacy" by posting someone's email address online. Though the email address posted was a public email address, O'Reilly characterized those who would do such a thing as "zombies."

Thanks to the posters at Democratic Underground for alerting us to the latest chapter in this shameful saga. A discussion on this, and the continued unanswered questions concerning the Gannon/Guckert story is linked here.

O'Reilly will be hosting zombie, Ann Coulter tonight on Fox "News" at 8pm ET.




By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2005 3:53pm PT  

I'm addressing folks on Election Reform issues tonight at an event organized by Global Exchange/Ventura County. It's a FREE event, so come on by if you're in the 'hood and say hello! It's at 7pm PT with a Q&A after. Here's more info, and there are specific location details as well at the top of the BRAD BLOG Front Page right now.

If I'm available on time, I may be on Trevor Carey's show on KFKA News Radio (1310am in Greeley/Fort Collins, CO) along with Lydia Cornell at 9:30p PT as well. I believe she'll be there either with or without me if you listen online or call in to say hey.

Otherwise, in the meantime, consider this an Open Thread to your heart's desire...




Makes a Direct, Albeit Ugly Hit
(ALSO FROM CANNON: Will the Cunningham/MZM Scandal Seep into the White House?)
By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2005 2:13pm PT  

Joe Cannon has some choice words about Ann Coulter in light of her recent indefensible violation of BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger Lydia Cornell's privacy. A spot-on passage or two from some CannonFire worth taking in full:

Even if every liberal vanished, she'd no doubt spend her time finding something to hate instead of something to celebrate. Odium is her junk; spewing insult is her way of shooting up. For most of us, life is a stew occasionally flavored by love and occasionally peppered with hate. For Coulter, hate is the only ingredient.

That's why she wants death for anyone who does not believe as she does. That's why she uses Jesus as though he were an Uzi. That's why this hard-drinking, hard-smoking, bed-hopping Femme-Domme still pretends to be a "Christian."

And while you're there, also check out Cannon's interesting eagle-eyed observation about one overlooked point in the Cunningham/MZM mess and how it might --- like so many other GOP Scandals d'Jour --- eventually find its way into the White House...




The Astute E&P Watchdogs Stay Alert While the Mainstream Media They Watch Stay Asleep...
By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2005 11:38am PT  

Dave Astor of the excellent and respected Editor & Publisher covers two matters we've discussed here recently.

Last night he did a quick item on the Ann Coulter/Lydia Cornell outrage. For the record, Coulter still has Lydia's private information posted publicly on her website some 48 hours after it was posted there. She has been asked politely to remove it. She has chosen not to.

As Cornell pointed out in her response yesterday, that sort of thing helped Bill O'Reilly blow his stack recently when he thought (incorrectly, of course) that a "liberal" group had posted a private email address on their website. Of course, it doesn't take much for the increasingly unstable O'Reilly to blow his stack these days.

As well, Astor covered Robert Koehler's latest Tribune Media Services' "Poll Shock" column that we briefly reported on last week. His coverage gathers additional comments from both the Dispatch Public Affairs Editor Darrel Rowland and Koehler on the "staggeringly impossible" results of Ohio's recent Nov. 8th 2005:

Will the Dispatch look into possible fraud or malfunctions connected with electronic voting technology? "We need solid evidence that there's something untoward," replied Rowland.

I love that. It's the exact same thing we heard after the '04 Presidential Election: Once someone else finds the "solid evidence" the media will be happy to report on it. Note to Mainstream Media: It's your job to investigate the smoke and find out if there's a fire! Otherwise, what the hell do we need investigative reporters for at all? Oh, yeah. Apparently, we don't. The bloggers will do it for you. (But don't come running to us wondering why it is that your readership is falling over a cliff in the meantime!)

Koehler's reponse to Rowland in E&P:

Koehler wrote: "Why, I wonder, in a state that made a national spectacle of itself with widespread irregularities and voter disenfranchisement a year ago, would there be so little interest in investigating whether the 'voting chaos' reported by the Toledo Blade or the 'night of surprises' reported by the Dayton Daily News could have produced tainted results?"

And Koehler concluded sarcastically that "the spark won't jump in the media mind. You know: Hmm, we have widespread confusion in the voting process, a recent GAO report that cites many glaring insecurities in e-voting, and our own polls indicating big victories that turn into big defeats. Could it be? Nah! What are we thinking? This is the world's greatest democracy."

Go Bob. And thank you, E&P.

UPDATE: And speaking of Koehler, this just in from his latest column which will be published tomorrow and available then to read at this location:

"Our goal . . . is to help others find their own voice, attain their own freedom, and make their own way."

Dig up an old lie from one of George Bush's forgotten speeches and the stench is asphyxiating, as though it's coming from the rotting corpse of democracy itself. The words quoted above are from the president's inaugural address in January - the odor intensified by recent news that the president allegedly wanted to bomb the headquarters of al-Jazeera




(Or At Least Claim They Will)
Refuse to Provide Source Code for Secret Voting Machine Software to State
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2005 11:39pm PT  

In North Carolina, Diebold had been attempting to get a special court order allowing them to get around NC's law requiring that Voting Machine Companies hand over their source code for their secret software to be kept in escrow in the event of a problem later. North Carolina has had many recently, including the complete loss of some 4500+ votes in Cartaret County during the Nov. '04 Presidential Election which led to a Re-Vote in the county.

Thanks to efforts by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the court has now ruled against Diebold's requested dispensation from state law. Now Diebold claims they are going to have to get out of the state entirely. Glad to hear it. If it's true. Other Voting Machine Companies have complied with the law, apparently, so what's Diebold's problem? Do they have something they wish to hide in that source code?

We may never know...AP reports:

"We will obviously have no alternative but withdraw from the process," said Doug Hanna, a Raleigh-based lawyer representing North Canton, Ohio-based Diebold.
...
That's not possible for Diebold's machines, which use Microsoft Windows, Hanna said. The company does not have the right to provide Microsoft's code, he said, adding it would be impossible to provide the names of every programmer who worked on Windows. (MSNBC is a Microsoft - NBC joint venture.)

The State Board of Elections has told potential suppliers to provide code for all available software and explain why some is unavailable. That's not enough of an assurance for Diebold

You'll pardon me, but I'm a bit of a computer programmer myself, and I understand the difference between providing source code that one has written versus source code for an entire operating system (like Windows) and/or third-party tools which are used to perform various generic tasks called by the program itself.

If Diebold had nothing to hide or fear, they would simply turn over their full source code to the state to be put into escrow, with the explanation that they do not have the access to (or legal permission to provide, even if they did) the source code to copyrighted third-party software. The state of North Carolina wasn't asking for that as far as I can tell, and an open admission to that --- as allowed by the state law --- should more than have covered Diebold from any liabilities concerning that third-party software.

That said, I'm glad to hear of their apparent threats to pull out of North Carolina entirely. And with that, I hope every other state in the union will immediately apply the same requirement in their state and let Diebold get back to the business of making ATM machines with open software which provides a paper record of every transaction. Apparently, they're quite good at that.

UPDATE: Jamie at IntoxiNation has more along the same lines...




Just Three Media Outlets Listed
No Supporting Information Given for 'Crimes' Meriting McCarthyesque Listing by Fox 'News' Host
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2005 2:28pm PT  

On November 14th, on his Fox "News" program The O'Reilly Factor, smear merchant and alleged sex offender Bill O'Reilly promised to "post the names" of those who were critical of his radio comment encouraging Al Qaeda to blow up San Francisco. Crooks And Liars has the video here.

O'Reilly had said, on his radio program, after the city voted against allowing military recruiters in public high schools and colleges there in the November 8th election:

"if Al Qaeda comes in here and blows you up, we're not going to do anything about it. We're going to say, look, every other place in America is off limits to you, except San Francisco. You want to blow up the Coit Tower? Go ahead."

Today, O'Reilly has finally posted his promised Enemies List on his website which he catagorizes as a list of "Media Operations that traffic in defamation." At this time, his list includes just three media outlets which he identifies as "the worst offenders". Though O'Reilly gives no specific details on why the outlets made his list, all three had been critical of O'Reilly in the past and reported on misinformation he had given to his television viewers and listeners of his radio show.

Here is the complete text from his promised McCarthy-esque list.

A Message from Bill: Media Operations that Traffic in Defamation

The following media operations have regularly helped distribute defamation and false information supplied by far left websites:

- New York Daily News

- The St. Petersburg Times

- MSNBC

These are the worst offenders. In the months to come, we expect to add more names to this list. We recommend that you do not patronize these operations and that advertisers do the same. They are dishonest and not worth your time and money.

Arianna Huffington on her Huffington Post website has been requesting names of those who'd like to be on O'Reilly's list. She has promised to "hand deliver them" to O'Reilly.

The BRAD BLOG regrets not making O'Reilly's list, but promises readers that we will endeavor to continue our accurate reporting on well-paid media character assassins like O'Reilly in hopes of some day rating the honor of being on such a list.

UPDATE: Crooks and Liars has a clip from O'Reilly's radio show today, which begs the question: Has O'Reilly simply gone bonkers?




Launches Campaign Citing Rightwing Pundit's Hate Speech, False Information
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2005 1:03pm PT  

Media Matters, a non-profit progressive-leaning media watchdog organization, has launched a campaign today on their website calling on CNN to stop giving Republican author and talking head Ann Coulter airtime on the cable network.

Citing 10 appearances on CNN since early 2004, the group, founded by one-time Conservative author turned Progressive David Brock, is asking why the cable news channel continues to host her on the air, giving her a continuing international outlet to spread her threatening hate speech, irresponsible smears, character assassinations and otherwise wholly incorrect information.

Media Matters has tracked false and misleading statements by media personalities such as Coulter, Bill O'Reilly and scores of others, along with news outlets such as all three broadcast networks, all three cable news channels along with dozens of other mainstream newspapers, organizations and journalists.

On their webpage calling for the discontinuation of Coulter as a guest on CNN, Media Matters cites several hateful quotes from the acid-tongued blonde such as her question pondering if it would be better "to impeach or assassinate" Bill Clinton and expressing her "only regret" that Oklahoma City bomber Timother McVeigh "did not go to the New York Times building."

On last Friday's edition of Lou Dobbs Tonight on CNN, Coulter charged that Democrats are "gutless traitors" and "long to see U.S. troops shot."

In 1997 Coulter was fired by MSNBC for comments she made on air, according to Media Matters' report. She continues to be a regular guest on the Fox "News" Channel.

The Media Matters campaign points readers to this CNN contact page where they can send CNN opinions about giving Coulter air time. The page at Media Matters announcing the campaign has much more information.

Last night Coulter seemed to have sunk to a new low by posting a personal email address and phone number along with a personal email on her website which was sent to her by BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger, author and actress Lydia Cornell. The astounding lapse in both netiquette and decency was in apparent retaliation for an article Cornell wrote here about her attempts to get more information on a speech Coulter recently gave in Florida calling for the repression of speech by Democrats. The entire shameful incident, in which Coulter wrote that "Death is sexier than Lydia Cornell" is reported in this previous BRAD BLOG item.




Appalling Act of Repub Talking Head in Apparent Retaliation to BRAD BLOG Article Questioning Her Call for 'Repression of Free Speech of Democrats'
'Death is certainly sexier than Lydia Cornell,' says vindictive, gutless author
By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2005 8:43pm PT  

In an extraordinary lapse of both common "netiquette" and overall decency, Republican bootlicking extremist Ann Coulter has posted a personal phone number and email address of BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger Lydia Cornell on the front page of her website with a link to the post again on her "Quotations from Chairman Ann" page.

Apparently in vindictive retaliation to Cornell's guest blog item published by The BRAD BLOG late last week, titled "Death is Sexier than Sex (to Ann Coulter)" Coulter has now publicly posted a personal Email Cornell had sent to Coulter while she was working on her story for us.

In Cornell's guest blog article, the actress and author reported on her experience attempting to receive a copy of Coulter's recent speech given to the Alachua, FL Republican party in which she called for the repression of the free speech of Democrats, adding "Frankly, I'm not a big fan of the First Amendment."

While Coulter had the time to take a 6th grade level ad hominem shot at Cornell ("Well, death is certainly sexier than Lydia Cornell") in her response, apparently the desperate Coulter didn't have the time to actually reply to Cornell's note, ask her for permission before publishing it publicly, or most despicably of all, have the decency to redact the personal information from the note before posting it online.

Coulter (whose personal email address we're tempted to post, but we're attempting to avoid sinking to her slimy depths) most recently called decorated Korean and Vietnam war vet and one-time Iraq War supporter, Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) "gutless" because he had the temerity to call for the withdraw of U.S. troops in Iraq.

But the true gutlessness displayed by Coulter in the posting of the personal information of one of her critics on her own widely read website would seem to demonstrate the true nature of the "courage" of Coulter's convictions. That is, if she still actually has any actual convictions left besides her desperate and vainglorious attempts at making money through hate speech and at the cost of the blood of the American men and women she continues to advocate should die for her imagined freedoms. What a horrendous "human being". No wonder both Christians and Conservatives (real ones) are turning against her.

The complete text of Cornell's polite letter (as posted on Coulter's website, but with personal information redacted) along with Coulter's petulant little response follows...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




Brad Questions McPherson Communications Director on KRXA's Peter B. Collins Show
By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2005 6:07pm PT  

Just finished a rather remarkable hour on our good friend Peter B. Collins' radio show on KRXA out of Monterey, CA.

Peter was able to bring Nghia Nguyen Demovic, a spokesperson from the CA Sec. of State's office, on air the last few minutes of the hour to try and clarify some of the last minute tomfoolery that seems to be going on concerning the impending decision about whether or not to re-certify Diebold Electronic Touch-Screen Voting Machines in the state of California.

Demovic dodged and danced, and generally evaded such probing questions as what the response from the community was at a public hearing held last week in Sacramento where input was sought concerning the decision about whether or not to allow Diebold back into the state after a major test over the summer revealed that some 20% of Diebold's AccuVote TSx voting machines failed to operate properly.

As previously reported on BRAD BLOG, the Republican SoS Bruce McPherson --- remarkably, and nearly inexplicably --- seems to be leaning towards allowing their faulty machines back into the state as the Help America Vote Act's January 1, 2006 deadline for such acquisitions rapidly approaches.

Though Demovic admitted on-air that she was at the meeting in question, and though it's been reported publicly that the Anti-Diebold folks far outnumbered the Pro-Diebold forces, she wouldn't even admit that much! Here's the The Stockton Record on the meeting last Monday, for example:

County Registrar of Voters Deborah Hench was the only person to support Diebold's TSx equipment out of more than 50 who spoke to a panel of Secretary of State Bruce McPherson's staff.

Nonetheless, Demovic refused to confirm that information for some reason.

So it was a public meeting, on the public record, that she attended in her capacity as a tax-payer salaried "Communications Director" for our own Secretary of State, yet she refused to give the audience of a California radio station accurate information about what is occurring in our own state capital concerning our own electoral system.

Is "What the fuck?" appropriate to ask here? Or might it be more appropriate to wonder why she hasn't yet been hired to take Scottie McClellan's place in the Bush Administration?

Listen to the segment yourself [MP3]. The clip linked here is just the short 8 minute phonecall with Peter and myself questioning Demovic.

Once again we'll remind you that SoS McPherson's office has asked for public comment about all of this and whether or not you feel they should recertify Diebold Electronic Touch-Screen Voting Machines in California. (Whether they give a damn about such comments is another question). To submit a comment, visit http://www.ss.ca.gov/elections/elections_vs.htm, call (916) 653-6814 or email votingsystemcomment@ss.ca.gov.

And remember, as California goes...so goes the rest of the country!

UPDATE: Demovic also stated during the interview that a full list of those who were invited to participate in the conference was on the SoS website and in response to my question of whether Voting Rights and Election Reform groups were invited she said that yes, they were invited, and yes, they were all listed on the SoS website. Well, here's the website for the event, and unless I'm missing it, I don't see either the list of invited groups (other than speakers, who all seem to be largely from the Electronic Voting companies or Secretaries of State), nor do I see any Voting Rights or Election Reform organizations on the agenda.

UPDATE: The complete text transcript of the coversation now follows...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---




By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2005 2:31pm PT  

"Breaking" news report videos here...




Another Republican Congressman Bites the Dust, Resigns from U.S. House
Rightwing Wall of Shame Continues to Grow...
By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2005 2:03pm PT  

From Reuters...

U.S. Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, a California Republican, resigned on Monday after pleading guilty to taking $2.4 million in bribes in exchange for help in securing Defense Department contracts.

Cunningham, 63, an eight-term congressman and decorated Vietnam War veteran, had been under federal investigation for his ties to Washington-based defense contractor MZM Inc. since the summer.

"I am resigning from the House of Representatives because I've compromised the trust of my constituents," Cunningham said after the court hearing.

He entered guilty pleas in San Diego federal court on Monday to conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud and tax evasion.
...
Cunningham, who in July had denied any wrongdoing, said he was deeply sorry.




A Few Important Items You May Have Missed...
By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2005 1:46pm PT  

While many of you were off enjoying Thanksgiving, the BRAD BLOG folks were (all too hard) at work fighting to save the world! Below you'll find just a few of just the most notable items from over the past several days...With many more to be found for those wise enough to scroll down.

I'd also like to take the opportunity to remind readers that BRAD BLOG is still largely reader supported! So before the holiday crush hits you and your pocketbook too hard, please feel free to Donate Online to our efforts so that we may continue to bring you such important material!

You can click here to make a one time donation, or --- by popular demand --- you may now finally create your own monthly subscription for any amount you like! Just use the simple blue form on the right side of the page! (There is also a snail mail address on that form at right if you prefer.)

Thanks for your tremendous support and we hope you continue to enjoy, The BRAD BLOG! We'll keep fighting to save the world as long as you continue to help join us in the effort!

And now...just a few of the great items you may have missed from over the holiday weekend...

Death Is Sexier Than Sex (to Ann Coulter)
Wherein Actress, Author and now BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger Lydia Lydia Cornell Attempts to Hold Alachua, FL Republicans' Feet to the Fire for Supporting and Profiting off the 'Political Porn' of One of America's Top Hate-Speakers...
Confusion, Misreporting Surround Reports on CA Sec. of State Diebold Voting Machine 'Hack' Test!
Mainstream Media Reports Indicating Scheduled Attempt to 'Hack' Voting Machines Are Wrong
State, Activists Still Negotiating Paramaters, Scheduling of Test as State and Federal Deadlines Draw Near?
VIDEO: Sunday Talk Show Round-Up on the GOP's Growing Corruption Scandal...
Scandal could bring down at least a dozen in Congress
A video compilation of the weekend's discussion on the matter
VIDEO: White House Pushed UK to Kill al-Jazeera Bombing Story
Bush wanted to bomb Arab news network to prevent reports on Falluja attack
BRAD BLOG has the full British Channel 4 Investigative Report
VIDEO: Pat Buchanan Predicts More CIA Leak Indictments
BUCHANAN: "Scooter will not be the last indictee"
And Another Time magazine reporter agrees to testify
America Turns Blue
And finally...While you were away enjoying the Holiday, something remarkable has happened in America!

Thanks again for your support of The BRAD BLOG! On the job 24/7/365...Whether we like it or not! :-)




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