Standing up to the NRA after Roanoke, horrifying U.S. gun death toll; PLUS: Denying global warming on Katrina's 10th anniversary; Trump's ugly nativism; Good news for Dems; Marriage dead-enders in KY...
Progressive Democrats of America hosted Islamic scholar Reza Aslan, author of "No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam" in Los Angeles on Sunday night at an event moderated by Bree Walker. Video of the entire conversation can be found below broken down into individual Q&A to make each part easily accessible:
The dirty little secret about the "Bush Doctrine" and how the last eight years have "opened up a Pandora's box" (6:53)
American misperceptions about the Muslim community (3:21)
Longtime BRAD BLOG readers might recall Brad Friedman's live audio interview [mp3] (and part 2) with Army Specialist Tomas Young from on the ground at "Camp Casey" in Crawford, Texas, during the Summer 2005. Young was paralyzed from the chest down when he was shot in Sadr City, Iraq on April 4, 2004. Cindy Sheehan's son Casey was killed in the same city on the same day.
And now documentarian Ellen Spiro and Phil Donahue are bringing Tomas Young's story to the masses in the soon to be released documentary, "Body of War." On Friday the filmmakers appeared on Bill Moyers Journal to discuss the movie. The segment began, however, by showing about 14 minutes of excerpts from the movie which can be seen in two parts below. Note that Brad is briefly seen and heard in footage taken from his interview of Young at "Camp Casey."
The BRAD BLOG's own Brad Friedman and other Election Integrity advocates spoke at the historic Joint Informational Hearing Discussion Of Problems Faced By Voters At The 2008 Presidential Primary Election held in Los Angeles on Friday (Brad covered one aspect of the hearing on the L.A. County "Double Bubble" ballot debacle quickly last week; our full body of coverage on the matter is posted here). However, Brad almost did not get a chance to say his piece as the Sergeant-at-Arms almost tossed him out of the hearing on multiple occasions for applauding (video below, 2:20):
Despite his "disruptive" antics, Brad was eventually allowed to speak to the panel about the Los Angeles County "Double Bubble" problem (video below, 2:23)
More video from the Election Integrity advocates' testimony at last week's hearings follows below...
Dan Abrams once again tackles the Don Siegelman case in his stellar "Bush League Justice" series on MSNBC. Tonight's guests included Scott Horton of Harper's, former Alabama GOP operative Dana Jill Simpson, and Governor Siegelman's daughter, Dana Siegelman.
Abrams and Horton opened the segment discussing the remarkable 60 Minutesblackout of the Siegelman story in Alabama on Sunday. According to the local CBS station the blackout occurred because of a faulty receiver. An incredulous Abrams then proceeded to make a mockery out of the laughable excuse:
It's sooo hard to believe - the notion that a receiver, in Alabama, just during the Siegelman story, just during 60 Minutes - I mean, they got it resolved, right? Right at the end, just as the story is finishing up, right?
After playing more of his interview with Karl Rove accuser Simpson from yesterday's show, Abrams made his first of many calls for Governor Siegelman's release from prison:
But there are serious questions that should lead the Justice Department and the judge to, at the very least, release Siegelman while he appeals.
Amazingly, Siegelman is unable to appeal his case because the government has failed to produce a transcript of the trial which was completed over 18 months ago.
Later Dana Siegelman tries to answer some of the many unanswerable questions regarding her father's case before flat out telling Abrams that the judge is "trying to keep her dad hushed as long as he possibly can" and that her father "knows Karl Rove is behind this."
Part 1 (9:49), Part 2 (2:08)
RELATED:Note that part of The BRAD BLOG's encounter with Karl Rove on Monday appears at the beginning of the segment. You can also catch two former "Bush League Justice" installments about the Siegelman case here at The BRAD BLOG: In the most recent, posted Tuesday Abrams called on AG Mukasey to open an investigation into the case and in the other, back in December, Abrams was the first in the mainstream corporate media to cover the Siegelman case.
I got a chance to meet Karl Rove before he spoke at the Gibson Amphitheater in Los Angeles last night. Here's the awkward video (33 seconds, below left) of my brief encounter, which was followed by a Q&A with Rove, in which he denied recent charges made against him by a Republican operative in Alabama concerning the prosecution of Alabama's former Democratic Governor Don Siegelman...
[Now including a number of UPDATES at the bottom of the article...]
Part 1 (9:51), Part 2 (3:56)
UPDATES: (by Brad) Incredibly, Larisa Alexandrovna is reporting that the broadcast of the Siegelman segment --- and only the Siegelman segment --- got blacked out in Alabama. "Transmission Difficulties"...
NOTE: The 60 Minutes report does not delve into the Election Fraud issues that have emerged in the case, including allegations, on video tape, from Siegelman himself, claiming that his "election was stolen electronically," after having gone to bed on Election Night the winner in 2004, only to wake up the next morning to find that he had "lost" after a Republican Board of Elections member, in the middle of the night, allegedly all by himself, re-tallied the votes. Links to that angle on the story, along with the White House and Karl Rove's relation to all of it, can be found in "Related stories" linked at the bottom of this article.
Many more Monday updates on the "Alabama Blackout" situation, including statements from both CBS and the changing story of their affiliate station, WHNT, now follow below as well. More still being added as notable...
Last night Fox 'News' aired a special hosted by Bret Baier, George W. Bush: Fighting to the Finish, that was an impressive piece of propaganda even by Fox's lofty standards. In order to make watching it a bit more palatable, I've made a couple of mashups addressing different aspects of the hour long program.
The first video covers the "unprecedented access" Fox 'News' was given to Bush. As Baier writes over at foxnews.com:
I’ve really enjoyed working on this program. For starters, the footage you will see in this hour is historic and fascinating. We were given access to the president at his ranch in Texas, in the Oval Office during meetings, aboard Air Force One during his historic trip to the Mideast and in the White House residence that is rarely seen.
In the second mashup I've edited together many of Bret Baier's questions and transitional comments in order to highlight the extent of the propaganda. Hopefully you will find it as interesting as Baier finds his own work:
I think, as someone who covers the White House everyday, it’s extremely interesting — and is definitely worth watching.
A third mashup covering some of the remarkable content will follow tonight or tomorrow morning.
UPDATE: Third Mashup Below
Victory, The PDB, Osama, Bush's Joyousness and more...
Election integrity expert and author of Fooled Again, Mark Crispin Miller, made some remarkable comments while speaking to the LA Election Protection Task Force last night. Robert Carillo Cohen, producer of Hacking Democracy, was also a featured speaker at the event.
After covering some preliminary matters, Miller retold the story of his post 2004 election encounter with John Kerry when the Democratic candidate admitted that he believed the presidential election was stolen. This shouldn't surprise anyone since, as Miller states:
And believe me, a cursory study of the evidence makes it abundantly clear that the election was stolen and it wasn't even that close.
Which ultimately leads Miller to conclude that Kerry is in denial:
Because if you really do accept what happened, you realize that it is a catastrophe, it's an emergency. And it's something that a guy like John Kerry or Al Gore is simply not built to deal with, right? Because if you come to terms with what went down, you realize that it is an attack on American democracy. Business as usual can't simply continue. We gotta do something. We gotta hit the barricades.
But resistance to the idea that American democracy is under attack goes far beyond Kerry and Gore. Miller believes the way to break through this resistance is to:
keep publicizing, to keep spreading the word, to keep making clear that it is not just this little thing here or that little thing there, we're talking about a fringe movement that has taken over the Republican party that has been dismantling democracy, that has been destroying the voting system on every conceivable front, not just the machines. They are even messing with the census. They are preventing another census from being taken because if you have census data you can track this stuff more easily.
Finally, Miller concludes by going over a 12-step approach to reforming our elections.
Senator John Edwards took his presidential campaign to Los Angeles yesterday, speaking to a crowd of about 1,000 at the Southern California Public Service Workers' headquarters. While Edwards spent the bulk of his nearly 20 minute speech going after special interests, corporations and lobbyists, he also took a few shots, without naming anyone, at his main Democratic challengers:
"You don't bring about change by shuffling papers, and you don't bring about change by just giving a speech. We have to actually have some guts, some determination and some fight if we want to bring the change that America so desperately needs."
Edwards also said that he was the "underdog" and challenged the crowd to start a grassroots movement on his behalf that will spread across the country like a "tidal wave of change."