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Latest Featured Reports | Monday, December 11, 2017
Sunday Toons of the Soulless Moment
A lot of souls have been sold in recent days. For what in return? 'PDiddie' rounds up the consequences in his latest weekly toon collection...
Former CO GOP Chair Found Guilty of Voter Fraud: 'BradCast' 12/8/17
And other ironies and outrages: SoCal fires spread; Trump dumps science; Election Integrity suit before AL election; House GOP ignores states' rights on guns; Listener e-mail...
'Green News Report' 12/7/17
  w/ Brad & Desi
Trump rolls back protections for two national monuments; Tribes, conservationists sue; GOP tax bill slashes renewables; PLUS: Credit firm warns cities to address climate risks or else...
Previous GNRs: 12/5/17 - 11/30/17 - Archives...
Two SCOTUS Cases This Week 'Take the Cake' for Absurdity: 'BradCast' 12/6/17
Guest: Slate's Mark Joseph Stern; Also: Fires worsen in, near L.A.; Franken pressured by Dem Senators to resign...
Battle for 'Ballot Images' Before AL's U.S. Senate Election: 'BradCast' 12/5/17
Guest: Election expert John Brakey; Also: Conyers resigns, Farenthold skates, RNC & Trump all-in for accused pedophile...
'Green News Report' 12/5/17
Trump rolls back national monuments; Tribes, conserv-ationists sue; GOP tax bill slashes renewables; PLUS: Credit firm warns cities to address climate risks or else...
GOP Tax 'Cut' Hustle; Callers on Trump-Russia 'Collusion': 'BradCast' 12/4/17
Repub Senate rams through largest tax increase in history; What is Team Trump trying to hide?...
CA Congressional Repubs Endangered
Ernie Canning explains why it's actually now possible that the GOP could be left with zero U.S. House Representatives after 2018...
Sunday Toons of the 'Lock Him Up' Moment
As it turns out, 'fake news' can actually result in real jail time, according to the cartoonists in PDiddie's latest weekly collection...
FLYNN FLIPS, Cops Plea; GOP Tax Scam's Generational Upheaval: 'BradCast' 12/1/17
Two huge stories. One, a transformational shift in the U.S. that will alter it for decades...
'Trigger' Warning: GOP Tax Maneuver Proves It's 'All a Scam': 'BradCast' 11/30/17
Guest: The Nation's David Dayen; Also: Accountability for sexual misconduct, if not in AL, White House or Main St...
'Green News Report' 11/30/17
EPA climate hearings in Coal Country; Winter heat breaks records; Another FEMA scandal slows PR recovery; PLUS: Good news for breathers in WI and MO...
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...

By Brad Friedman on 11/19/2005 2:11pm PT  

Some fan mail this morning asks "on what planet did you learn English?"...

From: Intergate [address removed]
Sent: Saturday, November 19, 2005 6:13 AM
Subject: On what planet did you learn English?

So you whine that the GOP altered Murtha's proposal so it would require "immediate" withdrawal of the troops....yet when one read Murtha's OWN proposal, it says:

Section 1. The deployment of United States forces in Iraq, by direction of Congress, is hereby terminated and the forces involved are to be redeployed at the earliest practicable date.

My question to you: What the hell is the difference between "immediate withdrawal" and "hereby TERMINATED"? EXACTLY ZERO DIFFERENCE you stupid prick.......Both statements mean the EXACT SAME THING!!

++++EAAMPLE: If you were an employee of mine and I said that your job was "hereby terminated", would you think that you had 6 months to clean out your desk? Of course not, you would interpret my statement to mean you were fired that second - right?

[name removed]

Springfield, VA

Our answer...The same planet on which the sender apparently learned to cherry-pick the information he chooses to read and use as the basis for an argument. Sigh...

++++EXAMPLE: If this emailer went to a restaraunt and ordered a steak and the steak involved was to be served medium-well as he ordered it, we suppose he'd have no problem when the steak was delivered to his table completely uncooked. After all, he got his steak and there is "EXACTLY ZERO DIFFERENCE" between what he asked for and what he received.

++++FURTHER EXAMPLE: Using the emailer's bullet-proof logic, if we were to refer to him as "a stupid prick," but he was really just stupid and not a prick at all, it would mean the "EXACT SAME THING!!"

(P.S. For other material the emailer chose to not notice from Murtha's original resolution --- above and beyond the stuff he chose to not notice in even the text he did quote in his impressive email --- see this previous item for the complete text of both Murtha's resolution, and the phony GOP resolution cyncially created to play politics with our troops instead of supporting them.)




To Force Vote Tonight on Combat Vet, House War Hawk's Gutted Resolution!
BRAD BLOG Obtains Complete Versions of Both Resolutions...
By Brad Friedman on 11/18/2005 3:37pm PT  

In what can only be described as a cynical and partisan last minute stunt by the Republican-controlled House of Representative, GOP leaders have announced a sudden vote this evening on the "Murtha Resolution" which had called for the immediate phasing out of troops in Iraq and a deployment of a "quick-reaction U.S. force" of Marines in the region should trouble arise.

The GOP-modified version of Murtha's resolution, which had given numerous reasons for his call for a pull-out has starkly changed both the language and meaning of the original resolution in hopes that Republicans can force Democrats onto the record voting in favor of, or against, "immediate termination" of forces in Iraq.

The BRAD BLOG has obtained PDF versions of both the original Murtha Resolution [PDF] as well as the 3-line GOP-Amended version [PDF] version being put forward by House Leadership for the last minute vote this evening.

Congressman Murtha (D-PA) is a long time Iraq war hawk, strong advocate of the military and a combat veteran of both the Vietnam and Korean conflicts. In an emotional statement yesterday, he had called for the pullout of U.S. troops from Iraq.

After the preamble in Murtha's original resolution, which gives numerous reasons to support his call for troop withdrawal, the following statement is made:

Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of American in Congress assembled, That:

Section 1. The deployment of United States Forces in Iraq, by direction of Congress, is hereby terminated and forces involved are to be redeployed at the earliest practicable date.

Section 2. A quick-reaction U.S. force and an over-the-horizon presence of U.S. Marines shall be deployed in the region.

Section 3. The United States of America shall pursue security and stability in Iraq through diplomacy.

The GOP revision, however, includes no preamble, and states that all troops will be removed immediately. This is it, in its entirety:

Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.

1 Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately.

The AP has more on the all-out political melee now occuring on the House floor...

MORE... Debate/Vote scheduled for 7pm ET ... C-Span's live coverage here. (thanks for link to DaveF of Bare Knuckle Politics!)




Advocacy Group Files Suit to Reverse Court Ordered Diebold Exemption
By Brad Friedman on 11/18/2005 2:52pm PT  

As the State of California appears to now be bending over backwards in an attempt to give their elections to Diebold as reported earlier today, a lawsuit has been quietly filed in North Carolina by the http://www.eff.org\">Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) to ensure that Diebold must play be the same rules as other vendors and that they abide by state law which they have been attempting to skirt through court filings.

Today EFF announced that they were going to court to prevent Diebold Elections Systems, Inc. from evading the North Carolina law which requires Voting Machine Companies to place their source code into escrow with the state. Diebold, one of America's largest Voting Machine Companies, apparently doesn't want to and has recently received a court-waiver to allow them to avoid doing so.

From EFF's press release issued today...

In a last-minute filing, e-voting equipment maker Diebold asked a North Carolina court to exempt it from tough new election requirements designed to ensure transparency in the state's elections. Diebold obtained an extraordinarily broad order, allowing it to avoid placing its source code in escrow with the state and identifying programmers who contributed to the code.
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"The new law was passed for a reason: to ensure that the voters of North Carolina have confidence in the integrity and accuracy of their elections," said EFF Staff Attorney Matt Zimmerman. "In stark contrast to every other equipment vendor that placed a bid with the state, Diebold went to court complaining that it simply couldn't comply with the law. Diebold should spend its efforts developing a system that voters can trust, not asking a court to let it bypass legal requirements aimed at ensuring voting integrity."

On November 4, the day that voting equipment bids to the state were due, Diebold obtained a temporary restraining order from a North Carolina superior court, exempting it from criminal and civil liability that could have resulted from its bid.

(Hat-tips to both John Gideon and David Edwards for alerting us to this story.)




Recertification Hearing on E-Voting Machines Changed at Last Minute, Participants Not Notified
By Brad Friedman on 11/18/2005 12:49pm PT  

Election reform advocates had hoped Diebold touch-screen voting machines would be permanently decertified in the country's largest "voting market" (as Diebold likes to refer to it) after a massive test of their AccuVote DRE machines earlier this year revealed a 20% failure rate. But a more recent test, secretly held at Diebold Election System's McKinney Texas headquarters, apparently in violation of California state law, has resulted in what appears to be a last minute about-face from California's Republican Sec. of State, Bruce McPhereson. The latest news has now thrown everything into doubt in the state concerning the future of electronic voting here.

Miriam Raftery of RAW STORY has the full skinny. Something smells very rotten in the state of California.




Letter from Holt, Davis Points to Failures in Voting Machines Around the Country
Bill Has More than 150 Co-Sponsors, But Has Not Been Allowed to Come to Floor by House Leadership
By Brad Friedman on 11/18/2005 12:26pm PT  

The original co-sponsors of legislation in the House of Representatives to require "paper records" on Electronic Voting Machines and many other security measures and improvements to the Help America Vote Act of 2002, have sent a "Dear Colleague" letter to other members citing the landmark report recently released by the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) on the myriad security problems found after a year-long investigation into those machines.

In a letter from last Wednesday obtained by The BRAD BLOG, Congressmen Rush Holt (D-NJ) and Tom Davis (R-VA) asked colleagues to join them in support of H.R. 550, known as the "The Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act".

In their letter, the congressmen point out several of the key findings in the GAO report leading off with a quote from it that reads ". . . computer programs could access these cast vote files and alter them without the system recording this action in its audit logs.Ē [emphasis in original]

The legislation, which currently has more than 150 bi-partisan co-sponsors, has been languishing for some time as House Leadership has kept it from coming up for debate on the House floor or committee mark-up. H.R. 550 is currently "pending" in the House Administrative Committee, according to Holt's Communications Director, Patrick G. Eddington, but it has received "no debate, mark-up or hearing" as of yet. He added, "no Committee has specifically addressed H.R. 550."

H.R. 550 was introduced in April of this year. It was a reintroduction of a predecessor bill, H.R. 2239, which was first introduced in 2003, but was similarly never debated or voted on in any House committee.

The House Administrative Committee is chaired by Ohio Republican Bob Ney who held hearings last March on "Ohio Election Irregularities" in which he called only one witness from any "Voting Rights" group. That group, the self-proclaimed "non-partisan" American Center for Voting Rights, had been formed only days before the hearing, and as reporting by BRAD BLOG has revealed, was formed by two high-level Bush/Cheney/RNC operatives. Ney is also reported to be currently under investigation by the DoJ for his involvement in the ongoing Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal.

Amongst several other points cited in the letter from the GAO reports's findings: Ballot definitions on Electronic Voting Machines may be altered so that "the votes shown on the touch screen for one candidate would actually be recorded and counted for a different candidate."; Programming errror in a Pennsylvania county resulted in an undervote percentage of 80% in some precincts; An "unknown number of disenfranchised voters" as documented by California voting officials; Election monitors in a Florida county discovering a "flaw" in an Electronic Voting Machine ballot that allowed "ballots to be added to the canvas totals multiple times without being detected."; An Electronic Voting system in Ohio added nearly 4,000 votes for Bush in just one precinct during the '04 Presidential Election.

Though the GAO report was non-partisan, requested by the Chairmen and ranking members of three different U.S. House Committees, and was released last month after a year-long investigation along with a rare bi-partisan joint press release which lauded it, not a single wire service or mainstream American newspaper to date, that we know of, has devoted a single paragraph reporting on its release or the information contained within.

The complete text of Holt and Davis' letter to colleagues follows [emphasis in original] ...

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




Partyin' at Arianna's...
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 10:39pm PT  

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




Makes Case to Justify Bush Lying Country Into War in First Times Column
Name Calls, Insults Protestors of Scheer Ouster
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 10:09pm PT  

In his first outing as one of the "new voices" to replace fired progressive columnist Robert Scheer at the LA Times, Jonah Goldberg forwards the wingnut CYA agenda by beginning to build a case that Bush may have lied the country into a war, but if he did so, it was okay since it was for "a just cause". He also regales his new readers by referring to those who disagree with him politically as "moonbats".

Finally, he goes on to gloat about it all over at Wingnut Central by making fun of those who protested Scheer's firing. Classy.

Great hire, LA Times!

...CONTACTS...
Jeff Johnson, new Op Ed page publisher
Jeff.johnson@latimes.org, voice: 213-237-5000 fax: 213-237-4401

Dennis FitzSimons, CEO Tribune Company
dfitzsimons@tribune.com, voice: 312-222-9100 fax: 312-222-1573

Letters to the Editor, Letters@LATimes.com




Measure Approved by Attorney General Even After 4 of 5 Staffers Wrote 51-Page Memo Advising Against Law
(Election-Related News Actually Makes WaPo's Front Page!)
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 1:57pm PT  

A page one story in today's Washington Post reports that a 51-page memo obtained by the paper, shows Dept. of Justice staffers had rejected a controversial new Photo ID requirement law for voters in Georgia, but that their recommendations were overruled and the measure was approved anyway by the Bush appointed Attorney General.

Georgia's new law was recently rejected as unconstitutional by two Federal Courts who equated it to a "Jim Crow-era poll tax" after its approval by the DoJ despite the recommendation against it by 4 out of 5 staffers in the DoJ's Voting Rights Act division.

The law would have required all voters to present a Photo ID at the poll, available for $20 to those who did not have one. The measure, which, like all such measures currently being pushed around the country by Republicans, is alleged to be disproportionately disenfranchising to minority (read: Democratic-leaning) voters.

Despite a complete dearth of evidence to demonstrate that Photo ID requirements are useful in combatting the non-existent epidemic of "Voter Fraud" in America, Republican legislators in Georgia and other states are attempting to ramrod such measures through their state legislatures. Even the creators of the Georgia law were unable to cite a single example of fraud in the state which would have been held off by the new legislation.

Indeed, the self-described "non-partisan" GOP front-group calling itself the American Center for Voting Rights has been fervently attempting to perpetrate the hoax of a "Voter Fraud" epidemic on voters for at least the past six months. They've made the cause their number one plan in attempting to further disenfranchise millions of minority, elderly, poor and urban-dwelling voters, all of whom are far more likely to vote Democratic and not own drivers licenses.

The Voting Rights Act of 1965, parts of which are up for renewal by this Justice Department in 2007, requires states such as Georgia to have any such new laws that may effect voters to be "pre-cleared" by the DoJ.

According to WaPo...

State Rep. Tyrone L. Brooks Sr., a Democrat and president of the Georgia Association of Black Elected Officials, said he was not surprised by the Justice Department's position in the case.

"Some of my colleagues told me early on that, because of politics in the Bush administration, no matter what the staff recommendation was, this would be approved by the attorney general," Brooks said. "It's disappointing that the staff recommendation was not accepted, because that has been the norm since 1965."

UPDATE 12/2/05: Bush DoJ does it again! This time with a unanimous decision against Tom DeLay's Texas redistricting! Turns out that too was overruled by his DoJ cronies!

UPDATE 12/10/05: Now the DoJ has barred staffers from offering opinions at all! Democracy crumbles...

For more information on the "non-partisan" tax-exempt ACVR scam and the snakeoil salesmen who invented it, Bush/Cheney '04 National General Counsel Mark F. "Thor" Hearne and RNC Communications Director Jim Dyke, please see BRAD BLOG's full Special Coverage of the "American Center for Voting Rights" at http://www.BradBlog.com/ACVR.
This is another in our series of occassional and annoying reminders that it is your support that allows us to keep going. Please help support The BRAD BLOG with a donation if you can. It means the world.



From the Wall Street Journal, So You Know It's True
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 12:41pm PT  

(Roaring 20's anybody?)




More on Ohio's Staggeringly Impossible '05 Results
The Corporate Media Continues to Not Care, But a Rightwing Blogger Finally Does...
By Brad Friedman on 11/17/2005 12:16pm PT  

The Corporate Mainstream Media may not give a damn about our democracy. Neither might the bulk of our politicians on both the Left and Right side of the aisle. But clearly the citizens do, and even one rightwing blogger who has recently seen at least some of the light...

The response to our article on the "staggeringly impossible" results of last week's election in Ohio on several Election Reform initiatives which would have struck deep into the heart of far-right Republican Ohio Sec. of State J. Kenneth Blackwell has been notable to say the least.

We felt the report was notable enough that we decided to cross-post it both at BRAD BLOG and at HuffPo, where --- though it was never added to the front page as a "featured blog" --- it has already received an extraordinary 93 comments as of this posting.

To give you an idea of what that story documented, here are the numbers from just one of the four Election Reform initiatives which all ended up failing by numbers which defy reasonable explanation when compared to the historically accurate Columbus Dispatch poll, completed and published just days before the Election in the Buckeye state:

ISSUE 3 (Revise campaign contribution limits)
PRE-POLLING: 61% Yes, 25% No, 14% Undecided
FINAL RESULT: 33% Yes, 66% No

The results on that issue alone was so far askew that it was enough to give the usually dubious Mark Blumenthal of Mystery Pollster pause enough to comment, "These results had MP seriously wondering whether the pollsters or election officials had mistakenly transposed 'yes' and 'no' in their tables."

See the original post for a comparison of Polling vs Final Results for all of the initatives, but suffice to say while the one above was the most inexplicably out-of-whack, the others, with the exception of Issue 1 --- which was the only one supported by Ohio's Republican Governor and on which the Dispatch poll was virtually right on the money on "Yes" voters --- all of the initiative Final Results bring the entire election machinery in Ohio once again under deservedly fresh scrutiny.

(We'll remind you that Ohio's results in the '04 Presidential Election squeeker, where just 6 votes for Kerry instead of Bush at each precinct would have changed the entire result for the nation. And also that the results from that election remain completely suspect, largely uncounted, and never recounted according to state law even while several elections officials have either been indicted or remain under investigation for their role in gaming that fiasco...the one in the state which gave Bush enough electoral votes to claim the Presidency).

The original report we filed, discussed an article by Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman of the Free Press in Columbus where they've been detailing an extraordinary amount of the election chicanery and "irregularities" under the iron-fisted rule of Blackwell, the Ohio elections arbiter and Bush/Cheney '04 Co-Chair in a state which is currently a snakepit of Republican machinery and out-and-out corruption.

Amongst the comments at both BRAD BLOG and HuffPo where the blog item was posted, a few, as expected, have knee-jerked that it must have been the Columbus Dispatch polling that was wrong, rather than the Final Results reported by the State which added brand-spankin' new, and wholly unaccountable, unrecountable, untransparent, and undemocratic Electronic Voting Machines for the first time in this election to 44 of its 88 counties. Machines which use secret software on which voters are asked to trust --- but not verify --- that their votes will be recorded accurately...or at all.

In addition to those 44 counties (41 of them using the same machines by Diebold, Inc. that the Republican Sec. of State in California recently decertified for their 20% failure rate), several other counties already use Electronic Voting Machines, and nearly all of them use electronic tabulating machines of one brand or another to count those votes.

We spoke yesterday to Fitrakis about the Dispatch poll's "historic accuracy" (which he described as "legendary" in our phone call) and about the various wingnuts who predictably presume the polling, instead of the election results, were wrong...

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




By Brad Friedman on 11/16/2005 2:15pm PT  

RAW STORY scoops Woodward on Woodward scoop by revealing what Woodward wouldn't.

The just posted story at RAW reports that "attorneys close to the investigation and intelligence officials" identified National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley as having revealed Valerie Plame/Wilson as a "CIA analyst" to WaPo's Bob Woodward.

Hadley's leak to the reporter who gained fame via his investigative work with Carl Bernstein on the Watergate scandal, would have occured prior to any other known leaks to journalists on the matter, and prior even to Joe Wilson's now-infamous NY Times Op/Ed which was critical of the Bush Administration's assertion that Saddam had attempted to purchase yellowcake uranium from Niger.




Right-Leaning Blog Collective Launches Today
By Brad Friedman on 11/16/2005 12:45pm PT  

They've already come under some harsh criticism (also here and here) from the left for their far-right leaning Editorial Board and unbalanced collection of blogs, but the group previously known as Pajamas Media has opened for business-proper today under the name "Open Source Media". Discredited former NY Times "journalist" Judith Miller was the keynote speaker at their launch. (Both BuzzMachine and Kos have some worthy thoughts on that).

OSM was founded by rightwingers Roger Simon and Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs. The latter blogger, at least, being quite fond of disparaging his political opponents by labeling them as "moonbats".

Nonetheless, and despite their currently massive lack of editorial "balance", several of their staffers have claimed in various recent conversations I've had with them that they hope to change that hard right tilt in the near future. The proof, however, will remain in the blog pudding.

During their testing phase, I participated in a "BlogJam" with three other bloggers for them. That's their term for an online debate forum. The no-brainer topic about which we debated a week or two ago was "Are left-right politics becoming too polarized?"

That debate is now available online here as one of their first offerings.

I had fun doing it, as you may be able to tell. You'll let me know how I did...




Letter Sent to Bush Today Requests 'No Pardons' Pledge, Suspension of Security Clearance for Officials Who Spoke to Reporters About Valerie Wilson's Identity
Asks Bush to 'Restore Honor' to White House
By Brad Friedman on 11/15/2005 10:42pm PT  

A group of 16 former intelligence officials sent a letter to George W. Bush earlier today expressing their outrage over "the breach of trust between this Administration and members of the intelligence community that has resulted from the Valerie Plame case."

The letter is described by former CIA analyst Larry C. Johnson as having been signed by a "bipartisan" group "representing a variety of political views."

"We are agreed on one thing," said Johnson in an Email receved by The BRAD BLOG this evening, "we are Americans and believe this country is worth defending."

Johnson had been a classmate of Valerie Plame/Wilson's during training at the CIA.

The missive, sent late this afternoon from a variety of former and retired officials, calls on George W. Bush to keep his "promise to restore honor to the White House," and demands accountability for any staff members "implicated in the leak of Valerie Wilson's classified identity." It goes on to decry the "bond of trust" that was "shattered with the exposure" of Wilson's identity.

One White House official, so far, I. Scooter Libby, has been indicted on charges relating to an ongoing investigation into the matter by Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald.

The former intelligence officials express that whether her exposure was "unwitting or intentional" the action's by Administration officials has destroyed both Wilson's career and her intelligence network "which was devoted to protecting this country from the threat of weapons of mass destruction."

They call on Bush to "immediately suspend the clearances of all White House personelle" who spoke to reporters about Wilson's CIA affiliation while taking the occassion to remind Bush about Dick Cheney's dismissal of the Air Force Chief of Staff who inadvertantly disclosed classified information to the press.

The letter, which was CC'd to several members of Congress, follows in its entirety...

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




By Brad Friedman on 11/15/2005 9:33pm PT  

This from a friend and emailer who attended today's protest over the recent dismisal of liberal columnist Robert Scheer at the LA Times. Scheer's apparent crime was being right on this administration and their trumped-up war from the get-go. That won't do as the LA Times works hard to both destroy itself and appease the Bill O'Reilly McCarthyites of the New American Right. You'll be delighted to know that while Scheer was removed, wingnut Jonah Goldberg has been added to the Opinion Page. Scheer's own website will continue to carry his columns, along with other papers around the country.

A lively protest today at noon in front of the LA Times building showed that people pay attention when their favorite columnist gets the boot. After a thirty year career at the paper, Robert Scheer was summarily dumped in a right-wing shuffle of the Opinion Page. Scheer's weekly commentary was depended on for digging out the truth. His voice was out front against the war in Iraq, and in pointing out the lies of the administration in the lead-up to war.

Protesters layed white bread on the sidewalk, amid shouts of "No more bland, we want Bob."

Meanwhile Scheer is launching an internet news service at the end of the month to be found at www.truthdig.com.

The LA Times can be reached at Letters@LATimes.com if you have any thoughts for them.

UPDATE: More details sent to me on how to contact the folks who need to be contacted:

Organizers of the protest will continue to press for a meeting with Jeff Johnson, the new publisher of the Op Ed page, and urge you to contact him:
Jeff.johnson@latimes.org (213-237-5000/fax: 213-237-4401) and CEO Tribune Company Dennis FitzSimons: dfitzsimons@tribune.com (312-222-9100/fax: 312-222-1573) to request Johnson's or FitzSimons' participation in a meeting with loyal Times' readers.

Several additional photos from today's protest follow...

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




By Brad Friedman on 11/15/2005 11:48am PT  

Death of a thousand cuts...That's what seems to be in store either for American democracy, or what will be required to finally take bring down the entire anti-democratic Electronic Voting cabal in this country, as aided and abetted in their crimes against American Democratic Values by the Corporate Mainstream Media.

We take heart that there is more and more coverage of these matters these days, even if there are more and more unfortunate reasons to have such coverage in the first place. VotersUnite.org's "Daily Voting News", now posted each day on BRAD BLOG, gives one some sense of how much is going on --- both good and bad --- in regards to Election-related issues in this country, and just how much of it does make it into the news somewhere, if only (and too often) on just the local level.

At least the public's and the media's awareness continues to grow --- slowly, but surely --- even as the incidents of democracy in disrepair increase exponentially along with that awareness (and along with the obscene outpouring of virtually unchecked HAVA money to States and Counties in the bargain).

Nonetheless, we always look for reasons to be optimistic, and our usual coterie of Election Reform Media All-Stars continues to both grow and produce stellar work. In addition to the recent Free Press exposť by Fitrakis and Wasserman on the inexplicable in Ohio's election last week, which we mentioned previously here (as well as at HuffPo), there are a few other notable heroic voices of late that you should know about.

Debra LoGuercio, the editor of the Winters Express and syndicated columnist for a number of smaller West Coast papers, continues to take both her democracy and her role of media watchdog seriously. Her latest column this week, "Where in the World is Democracy?" [link fixed] picks up on my previous calls (both at BRAD BLOG and later at HuffPo) for Mainstream Corporate Media coverage --- hell, even a single sentence would do! --- of the recent landmark report from the non-partisan Governmental Accountability Office (GAO). That report, which confirms so many of the problems with Electronic Voting that we've been reporting on here for more than a year, is apparently less important to the corporate media braintrust, according to LoGuercio, than figuring out where in the world Matt Lauer is.

We're happy as well to welcome one Kathy Gill into the still-all-too-exclusive club of journalists who give a damn about democracy. She's posted an article on that GAO report yesterday at About.com. Welcome to the small, but still-growing club, Kathy! Glad you're on board and please keep up the good --- and important --- work!

And as Election Day unravelled last week, our friend Robert Koehler of Tribune Media Services once again opines on the MIA MSM in regard to Election Fraud in America's once-great democracy in his latest piece, "A Crime Without a Name - 'Concern' about election fraud is useless without guts and anger". He speaks, amongst other things, about John Kerry's failure to stand up for what is right here, and the unwillingness of the mainstream media to investigate and report without that kick in the pants.

The always sharp Dave Astor of Editor & Publisher has added some visibility by picking up on Bob's column in a quick article about it yesterday. For this, we are pleased, since so many of Bob's Tribune Media clients have shown neither the guts nor the anger required to save our democracy, and have chosen instead to avoid running many of his important articles on Election Reform issues altogether. It'll be interesting as usual, to see how many of them don't pick up Koehler's latest, despite --- once again --- the elegant way in which he is able to express the nightmare of our crumbling democracy.

To poorly paraphrase a famous movie tagline; In the corporate-conglomerated media world of the 21st century no one can hear you scream. But some have heard, and will continue to yell even louder...And we'll keep at the rest of them until they realize what's at stake...no matter how many cuts it takes.




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