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Latest Featured Reports | Thursday, July 31, 2014
'Green News Report' 7/29/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Obama Admin approves sonic cannons for offshore oil exploration; Bizarre weather across U.S.; CO judge nixes fracking ban; PLUS: Neil Young wants your help in the rainforest...
Previous GNRs: 7/24/14 - 7/22/14 - Archives...
'A Kind of Propaganda War'
After U.N. denial, NBC's David Gregory apologized for use of unverified Israeli video claiming to show rockets fired from U.N. refugee shelter in Gaza where at least 15 were killed by Israel last week...
Bi-Partisan House to Obama: Get Out of Iraq
Overwhelming, if largely symbolic vote in the U.S. House, directs the President to pull U.S. troops back out of Iraq. Directive seen as stinging rebuke to GOP war haws in Senate..
'Green News Report' 7/24/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Breaking: Storm ravages VA campground; New rules for explosive oil trains; Big win against Big Oil in small Maine town; PLUS: U.S. and Rush Limbaugh lead world in denial...
Previous GNRs: 7/22/14 - 7/17/14 - Archives...
Israeli Attack on UN Shelter Kills At Least 15 in Gaza
The strategy of bombing children, but warning them first, will almost certainly result in years of peace and prosperity for the region...
The Good Fight Continues: KPFK 'BradCast'
Brad speaks with John Wellington Ennis, documentarian and activist, on his newest film and his decade-long fight for election integrity...
What We Do Now
"It took one hour and 57 minutes for the execution to be completed, and Wood was gasping for more than an hour and a half of that time"..."Wood, 55, gasped more than 600 times before he died"...
'Green News Report' 7/22/14
Record wildfires in Pacific NW; June 2014 was hottest globally on record; EPA blocks Pebble Mine; CA blocks water pollution; PLUS: To cut emmissions, cut the beef...
Aborted Statewide 'Recount' Reveals It's a Great Time to Steal an Election in California
In the closest election in state history, even a well-funded candidate couldn't afford to find out if he actually lost...
'I Never Realized Voter ID Fraud Had Not Been Proven'
A RW caller's admission to Brad on NC radio underscores unparalleled propaganda power of Fox 'News'...
John Oliver On America's Prison Problems...With Singing Muppets!
HBO's Last Week Tonight offered smarter (and certainly funnier) coverage than you're likely to see anywhere else...
No, JFK Didn't Steal 1960 From Nixon
Another Zombie Myth that just won't die gets knocked down again...for now...even as its persistence continues to fuel false Republican claims of 'voter fraud' even today...
CA Ballot Prop to Overturn 'Citizens United'
Measure calls for Amendment 'to make clear that rights protected by the U.S. Constitution are the rights of natural persons only'...
UK Deputy PM Condemns Israel's 'Deliberate Use of Disproportionate Response'
Nick Clegg calls attacks on Gaza 'collective punishment' that 'incubates next generation of extremists' and 'needs to come to an end'...
'Green News Report' 7/17/14
Australia's RW govt repeals landmark carbon tax; Obama action on global warming impacts; Record wildfire season in West; PLUS: CA gets tough on water wasters...
Kochs Radical 'Libertarianism' Broke KA
More than 100 top GOPers endorse Republican Gov. Brownback's Dem opponent after tax cuts for wealthy have busted the extremist Koch Brothers' home state...
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...


A Brad Blog Exlusive Interview with David Swanson, National Coordinator for Camp Democracy
Swanson: 'This is put up or shut up time, for American citizens with awareness and conscience.'
By Joy Williams on 8/30/2006 5:52pm PT  

Guest blogged by Joy Williams

Hello folks, here's the next in my series of Democracy in Crisis... I hope you can attend this!

I emailed David Swanson after hearing him describe Camp Democracy on a few different shows on Air America, and asked him for a few minutes of his time to explain to me the plans for this event in our nation’s capital. He happily agreed, so here’s the interview. Let’s spread the news about this far and wide so as many people can attend as possible.

From David Swanson’s website...

David Swanson is the Washington Director of Democrats.com and of ImpeachPAC.org. He is co-founder of the AfterDowningStreet.org coalition, creator of Progressive Democrats of America. He serves on the steering committee of the Charlottesville Center for Peace and Justice and on a working group of United for Peace and Justice.

He has worked as a newspaper reporter and as a communications director, with jobs including Press Secretary for Dennis Kucinich's 2004 presidential campaign, Media Coordinator for the International Labor Communications Association, and three years as Communications Coordinator for ACORN, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Swanson serves on the Executive Council of the Washington Baltimore Newspaper Guild. He obtained a Master's degree in philosophy from the University of Virginia in 1997.

His website is www.davidswanson.org.

Stay tuned following the interview below for more information and specific details on Camp Democracy for those who'd like to come on out...

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

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The new camp sits on land Sheehan now owns, so the legal difficulties she had last year are 'history'
Lone Star Iconoclast again provides coverage
By Winter Patriot on 8/8/2006 7:27pm PT  

Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

Cindy Sheehan has once again established herself as an anti-war presence in Crawford, Texas. She has a new campsite near the palatial estate that "president" Bush calls his "ranch", and she is inviting people to join her.

Our friend Leon Smith of the The Lone Star Iconoclast has more. Here's a sample:

Camp Casey III: It’s All About Peace

Sheehan explained Sunday that during their rallies last Easter, "We had about 300 people and it (Camp Casey II) wasn’t big enough and since they (the McLennan County Commissioners’ Court) passed the ordinances that we can’t camp at Camp Casey I, we needed to either rent abigger property or buy something. We were having trouble finding something for rent so I decided to buy something. When we don’t need Camp Casey III (located on the outskirts of Crawford) anymore and when the troops are home and after we use it as a peace camp I’m going to donate the property to the town of Crawford to use as a park. We’re going to build a playground and put in some picnic benches and we’re going to name it the Specialist Casey Sheehan Memorial Peace Park."

When asked whether local residents were resentful about the way the property was purchased, through a third party, Sheehan said, "A lot of people have a third party buy land for them. I could have hired a lawyer, but it would have cost me more. I think they should be more resentful to a president that lied to the American public and lied to the world.

"I think Camp Casey III will be safer than where we were before, and we won’t be in the way as much as we were before. We are good neighbors. We were good neighbors out there. If they can’t put up with our presence for a few weeks, when our soldiers and the people of Iraq are suffering constantly because of what our other neighbor George Bush did, then I think they need to learn to relax a little bit and learn to live with us because, I promise you, I love Crawford and we will be good neighbors."

Leon is promising more coverage and we will try to keep you posted.

All the plans have been changing so fast! This recently-published interview is already way out of date, but still worth a read:

Return to Camp Casey: An Interview with Cindy Sheehan

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Detained Peace Protestors Forced to 'Strip Naked', Were 'Scrubbed for Lice'
By Brad Friedman on 4/15/2006 12:41pm PT  

David Swanson updates the sitch in Crawford, TX this morning where, as we reported yesterday, 14 anti-war protestors who are part of Cindy Sheehan's "Camp Casey" Easter protest were arrested last night...

The 14 arrested included 8 veterans, one of them a disabled Iraqi vet, and 6 grandmothers. "It was amazing," said Barbara, "to see veterans and grandmothers arrested, while George Bush and Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld are running loose killing people.

Eight of the 14, including Daniel Ellsberg, had been arrested last Thanksgiving and charged with obstructing a highway and with felonious trespassing. They staged a demonstration at the court house the day before yesterday demanding that those charges be brought to a trial or dropped. This time, the 14 were charged only with obstructing a highway.

They were forced to strip naked, communally, women in one room, men in another, and made to shower and scrub for lice. Then they were dressed in reusable jail underwear and striped jail suits. I guess we should be glad that Rumsfeld wasn't there with any kinky fetishes or dogs.

Lonestar Iconoclast has more coverage and a bunch of fresh photos from yesterday.

Still more details, video of the arrests, and our LIVE audio interview last night with Cindy Sheehan after the arrests are all here...

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UPDATED: Audio from LIVE Sheehan Interview Now Included...
By Brad Friedman on 4/14/2006 3:54pm PT  

As David Swanson at AfterDowningStreet.org reported minutes ago, there have been 14 arrests in Crawford, TX where Cindy Sheehan and supporters are again camping out in the original location where they took up camp last Summer.

Though Cindy's sister and Daniel Ellsberg were amongst those arrested, Cindy and ersatz Camp Casey organizer U.S. Army Col. Ann Wright have chosen to not be amonst those arrested this time around so they can continue to run the camp.

I've just spoken with Wright, and have arranged for Cindy to appear with us in person on The Peter B. Collins show on KRXA 540am, in Monterey, CA and elswhere, during my normal weekly Friday guest appearance on his show.

I'll be on tonight beginning at 5pm PT (7pm Crawford time, 8pm ET) and Cindy should be joining us at the bottom of the hour for a live update with the latest.

===

UPDATE: Just completed the live interview with Cindy, straight from Crawford, TX... Here are the MP3's in your choice of length...

-- Peter B. Collins Show: Segment with Cindy & Brad [MP3]
-- Peter B. Collins Show: Complete Hour with Brad on Election Stuff and more, includes live Cindy interview. [MP3]

FURTHER UPDATE: "Crawford is now our home too," says Ann Wright after the arrest, along with a promise to dog Bush wherever he goes. As Cindy pointed out in the interview above, and the Lone-Star Iconoclast ably reports, the folk arrested in Crawford on Thanksgiving last year still have not been formally charged. It seems the folks of McLellan County, TX would rather not have their new, unconstitutional ordinance disallowing protestors from camping on the side of the road, get tested in court.

See Scott Galindez' video coverage of the arrest at TruthOut.

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By David Edwards on 3/17/2006 7:59am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


Video in Streaming Flash format...
Video in Windows Media format...
Audio in MP3 format...

Last night on MBNBC Scarborough Country, Joe Scarborough was surprisingly polite during his interview with peace activist Cindy Sheehan.

Cindy Sheehan is joining other peace activists today who are undertaking a 140 mile march to protest the Iraq war and demanding that Iraq war monies be diverted to Hurricane Katrina relief.

UPDATE: VIDEO - Peace Activists March to New Orleans


Video in Streaming Flash format...
Video in Windows Media format...

CNN reports on the peace/anti-war activists who are marching 140 miles to New Orleans.

The video in this report is from yesterday's segment of the march.

One protester carried a sign saying "Make Levees Not War!"

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Delegation Seeks U.N. Help to Avoid Civil War, Hardships for Women, Children Under U.S. Occupation
By Brad Friedman on 3/7/2006 10:04pm PT  

Meant to post this yesterday...From Reuters...

Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war activist whose son was killed in the Iraq war, was arrested with three other protesters in New York on Monday after a rally with women from Iraq.
...
On Monday, she had joined a delegation of women from Iraq at the rally at the United Nations, urging the United Nations to help prevent civil war in Iraq.
...
Entisar Mohammad Ariabi, a pharmacist at Baghdad's Yarmook Teaching Hospital, wept as she told reporters of the hardships experienced by Iraqi women.

"U.S. occupation has destroyed our country, made it into a prison," she said. "Schools are bombed, hospitals are bombed."

"We thank you, Mr. Bush, for liberating our country from Saddam. But now, go out! Please go out!" she said.

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Story of Army Specialist Tomas Young, First Revealed on The BRAD SHOW from Crawford, Texas, Discussed in Mike Wallace Story This Evening
By Brad Friedman on 2/12/2006 5:48pm PT  

We're told that tonight's 60 Minutes features a segment with Mike Wallace on "Wounds of War" featuring soldiers injured in Iraq. (60 Minutes' website now has coverage of the segment, with a video link, but it's not the complete segment apparently.)

The segment, third on tonight's broadcast, features an interview with Tomas Young, whose story we first highlighted during our special "Operation Noble Cause" radio broadcasts on The BRAD SHOW from on the ground at "Camp Casey" in Crawford, TX, last summer. Apparently footage of me interviewing Young is a quick part of the segment.

Army Specialist Young was paralyzed from the waist down --- on the same day and in the same city as Cindy Sheehan's son, Casey --- while riding in a canvas-covered truck through Sadr City during the uprising there.

Young is seen in the photo at right at Camp Casey with his new wife, Bree, requesting a meeting with Bush. They had come to Crawford on their honeymoon. Bush had refused a meeting with Sheehan at the time on the grounds that he'd already met with her. As far as we know, Bush has still never met with Young, who wanted to ask him why he was refusing to support Stem Cell research so that he might someday be able to walk again.

-- The initial BRAD BLOG item on Young from Aug. 29, 2005 is right here.
-- My radio interview from Camp Casey on that same day with Young is right here [MP3].

UPDATE: Have now seen the segment, and it was interesting. We'll try to get it up here. One thing I didn't know until tonight was that Tomas' brother is still serving in Iraq. So for those who suggest that what Young is doing --- in speaking out against the war --- is harming our troops...well...he made clear on 60 Minutes that's the last thing he'd want to do with a brother still serving there!

FURTHER UPDATE: Here's the segment! Courtesy of the invaluable David Edwards!


Video in Streaming Flash format...

(Hat-tip Jesse of Stakeholder for the heads-up!)

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The Continuing Pro-Administration Bias of both WaPo and Fox News
And the Hypocrisy of One Very Dangerous Republican Congressman from Florida
By Brad Friedman on 2/2/2006 5:12pm PT  

Hopefully this will be my last words on the disgraceful incident involving the arrest, removal and detention of Cindy Sheehan, who gave the life of her child in defense of this country, just prior to Tuesday's State of the Union address.

This latest canary-in-the-coalmine story made the front page of WaPo today, and reveals quite clearly both the Media's and at least one Republican's bias against those who do not agree with the George W. Bush Administration...As well as the disregard for our Constitutional Freedom of Speech. At least by the Republican.

The WaPo article, written by Petula Dvorak, first reveals the pro-administration media bias and/or their consistent inability to fairly report on an unfair situation. Note this early graf:

[Capitol Police Chief Terrance W.] Gainer said he also would ask that charges against Sheehan --- she was arrested; Beverly Young left before it came to that --- be dropped. "It was," he said, "a good-faith mistake by officers operating under poor direction."

In other words it's implied here that Beverly Young, the wife of Congressman Bill Young (R-FL), who was removed from gallery at some point during Bush's speech wasn't arrested because, unlike Sheehan, it didn't come to that. Mrs. Young must have been polite (she wasn't) requiring no arrest, while Sheehan must have been unruly (she wasn't) requiring arrest and hours of detention.

The fact of the matter, however, as clearly explained later in the article, is that Mrs. Young was never threatened with arrest at all, unlike Sheehan who was frog-marched out of the chamber and handcuffed from the get-go. And that was even with Sheehan being polite in every respect, by all accounts of the story, while Young was abusive towards the cops, calling them "idiots" (that night, and even later after their eventually apology) and, as WaPo points out, "Witnesses said her words for him were much saltier the night before."

After a night of fingerprinting and booking and lockup, Sheehan departed the city. But Young had not, and her response as she enjoyed hugs from supporters yesterday after the apology was to call Gainer "an idiot." Witnesses said her words for him were much saltier the night before.

As I mentioned yesterday in my article on "Cindy Sheehan's Unequal Treatment Under the Law", the Wingnuts who've been busy trying to equate Sheehan's treatment with Young's ("They were both asked to leave, so clearly there's no political bias here!" say the apologists) have also overlooked the fact that Young was asked to leave much later. After the cops already had an embarrassing situation on their hands. As WaPo reported...

About 45 minutes into the speech, an officer asked Beverly Young to step outside, where he told her: "We consider you a protester" because of her shirt, she said.

She said she angrily challenged officers to explain what law she had violated, and they threatened arrest.

She said an officer mentioned that Sheehan was removed earlier and therefore "it was kind of only fair" that she be asked to leave, too.

It's clear that Mrs. Young would have been left alone with her "Support the Troops" T-shirt and would not have been asked to leave, had not the cops already had the Sheehan situation on their hands, and needed to cover their asses.

Finally then, it's revealed in the story that the hypocritical Congressman Young himself would likely not have said a word about Sheehan's treatment (which was much worse than his wife's) had his wife not been asked to leave. He admits as much:

Young said he wouldn't be so mad if it were just Sheehan. "I totally disagree with everything she stands for," he said. But by removing his wife, Gainer's officers clearly "acted precipitously," Young said.

So the woman actually arrested, detained, and perhaps even "roughed up" was no problem for Young's "standards" because he "totally disagree[s] with everything she stands for."

Welcome to the amazingly slipperly slope...as it gets still slipperier and slopier every damn day in this country.

Still unclear? See how Judge Anthony Napolitano --- who defended Sheehan on Fox News, ostensibly, once it became clear she broke no rules or laws --- reportedly contrasted Young's T-shirt with Sheehan's. Young's, said Napolitano, in regard to the "Support the Troops" T-shirt, was "a Republican T-shirt."

Fox happily took up the meme on their website:

"Sheehan's T-shirt alluded to the number of soldiers killed in Iraq: '2245 Dead. How many more?' ... Young's shirt had just the opposite message: 'Support the Troops --- Defending Our Freedom.'"

The "opposite message"?!

It's a dangerous fucking line we're crossing here in America 2006. Pay attention.

ALSO... It's not just the MSM who get the story wrong in their rush for political points. Blogger Glenn Greenwald reports on tons of Wingnut bloggers who couldn't wait to lie about the Sheehan story to their readers...and then refuse to correct themselves after it was proven how incredibly wrong they were.

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Will Drop All Charges, According to NBC. 'We Screwed Up,' Says Capitol Police...
[LATE UPDATE] MSNBC Scrubs 'We Screwed Up' Article Without Explanation! Replaces with AP Story...
By Brad Friedman on 2/1/2006 2:46pm PT  

According to MSNBC...

WASHINGTON - Charges against antiwar protester Cindy Sheehan, who was arrested after a scuffle over a T-shirt she wore to the State of the Union address, will be dropped, officials told NBC News Wednesday.

U.S. Capitol Police took Sheehan away in handcuffs and charged her with unlawful conduct, a misdemeanor, when she showed up to President Bush's address Tuesday night wearing a shirt that read, "2245 Dead. How many more?" --- a reference to the number of soldiers killed in Iraq.

But Capitol Police will ask the U.S. attorney's office to drop the charges, NBC News' Mike Viqueira reported Wednesday.

"We screwed up," a top Capitol Police official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

He said Sheehan didn't violate any rules or laws.

As we pointed out previously, Sheehan was arrested and detained for hours for wearing the T-shirt she had been wearing all day prior to the State of the Union Address, while a Republican Congressman's wife who wore a "Support the Troops" shirt was simply asked to leave (even though she called the cops "idiots").

On moral and "Freedom of Speech" grounds, neither should have been ejected. Now, as it turns out, neither of them should have been ejected on legal grounds or even "rules of Congress" grounds.

Here's a photo of a statement by Republicans from last year that was allowed. Here's our minute-by-minute coverage of the shameful affair as it played out last night.

UPDATE: As of Wednesday evening, it looks like MSNBC has scrubbed their "We Screwed Up" article and replaced it, at the same link, with an article by AP. No explanation is given at the MSNBC website for the switcheroo!

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And George W. Bush's Hatred of Both Freedom and the U.S. Constitution
By Brad Friedman on 2/1/2006 11:55am PT  

Let me be very clear, since the Mainstream Wingnut Media Spinners are already attempting to "Fair and Balance" (read: level an unlevel playing field) this one.

Cindy Sheehan, who did not plan to, or even want to go to the State of the Union speech, was convinced to go. She wore the T-shirt she had been wearing all day long in support of our troops, including her own son who gave his life in service to this country while in Iraq. Sheehan's shirt said, "2,245 Dead --- How Many More??"

She was arrested for wearing the shirt, held for hours in detention, and claims to have been "roughed up" a bit in the process.

We covered the entire process, minute-by-minute, as it shamefully unfolded last night.

Later, during the speech --- after Sheehan had already been arrested --- the wife of a Republican Congressman from Florida, Bill Young, was politely asked to leave the chamber for wearing a T-shirt in support of our troops. Her shirt said "Support the Troops Defending Our Freedom."

She was not arrested for wearing the shirt, she was not held for hours in detention, nor roughed up. She does not face any legal charges or legal fees in connection with the incident that we know about. And, as far as we know, did not also make the ultimate sacrifice of giving the life of her child for this country.

Rep. Young reportedly decried, "Shame, shame," on the U.S. House Floor today for the treatment of his wife. His wife, who was not arrested as far as we know.

While neither woman should have been arrested --- or even removed from the gallery (in our opinion) --- they were not treated equally. Whatever the "rules" are about such things in the U.S. Congress, they did not receive "equal treatment under the law". (A law, we might add, which would seem to be unconstitutional, according to this 1971 Supreme Court decision which ruled that wearing a "Fuck the Draft" T-shirt into a courthouse was Constitutionally protected free speech).

Both T-shirts were in support of our troops. Both shirts made a political statement of sorts. One woman was arrested, the other was not.

In fact, the other was not even asked to leave until after the speech had already started. After Sheehan had been arrested and after the authorities knew they had a politically sticky situation on their hands. All of which begs the question of whether Mrs. Young would have been asked to leave the chamber at all, had not Sheehan's arrest occurred previously.

As to Sheehan's take on things, she wrote this morning about "What Really Happened" as she experienced it.

She describes the fact that she didn't want to go to Bush's speech at all, since it would be so difficult for her to here, didn't wish to protest or be disruptive, but was convinced, in the end, to go anyway.

You can read her entire description of events, but here's one notable passage:

I was never told that I couldn't wear that shirt into the Congress. I was never asked to take it off or zip my jacket back up. If I had been asked to do any of those things...I would have, and written about the suppression of my freedom of speech later. I was immediately, and roughly (I have the bruises and muscle spasms to prove it) hauled off and arrested for "unlawful conduct."

After I had my personal items inventoried and my fingers printed, a nice Sgt. came in and looked at my shirt and said, "2245, huh? I just got back from there."

I told him that my son died there. That's when the enormity of my loss hit me. I have lost my son. I have lost my First Amendment rights. I have lost the country that I love. Where did America go? I started crying in pain.

What did Casey die for? What did the 2244 other brave young Americans die for? What are tens of thousands of them over there in harm's way for still? For this? I can't even wear a shrit that has the number of troops on it that George Bush and his arrogant and ignorant policies are responsible for killing.

I wore the shirt to make a statement. The press knew I was going to be there and I thought every once in awhile they would show me and I would have the shirt on. I did not wear it to be disruptive, or I would have unzipped my jacket during George's speech. If I had any idea what happens to people who wear shirts that make the neocons uncomfortable that I would be arrested...maybe I would have, but I didn't.

All of that, even as Bush was saying at the exact same moment, as if he meant it, these words during his State of the Union Speech:

"No one can deny the success of freedom, but some men rage and fight against it.
...
We love our freedom, and we will fight to keep it."

Cindy Sheehan understands what those words actually mean. She gave up the life of her son in supposed defense of that freedom. She is fighting for that freedom which George W. Bush doesn't have a clue about.

And frankly, any American who doesn't stand with her in that particular fight, hasn't a clue of what America --- or the U.S. Constitution --- actually stands for.

"Shame, shame," indeed.

UPDATE: John Nichols in The Nation gets it right. He discusses the events that took place "Minutes before the President of the United States would tell the Congress how much he appreciates 'responsible criticism and counsel'" and points out that Mrs. Young admits to having "argued loudly with officers and called one of them 'an idiot'". But, of course, unlike Sheehan, who behaved politely throughout the proceedings according to all accounts...

Mrs. Young was not handcuffed. She was not dragged from the Capitol. She was not arrested. She was not jailed.

Sheehan, who caused no ruckus, was arrested not because she engaged in "unlawful conduct." Rather, by every evidence, she was arrested because of what her t-shirt said --- and, by extension, because of what she believes.

ALSO... More on "Good SOTU Protests" versus "Bad SOTU Protests" here...

FURTHER UPDATE: Capitol Cops admit they "Screwed up"! Charges to be dropped!

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Was to Attend State of the Union Address! Was Already Seated in Gallery When Arrested by Capitol Police!
EXCLUSIVE DETAILS...'T-Shirt' Story Confirmed by AP...Media Fighting over Sheehan for Morning Show Appearances...Protesters Rallying for Sheehan's Release...Police push protesters away from Capitol...Sheehan Finally Released, Says She was 'Roughed Up...PHOTO OF THE 'T-SHIRT' FINALLY...
By Brad Friedman on 1/31/2006 5:52pm PT  

CNN is now reporting...

Antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan --- who was invited to attend President Bush's State of the Union speech --- has been arrested, Capitol police say.

Invited by Rep. Lynn Woosley [sic] (D-CA) to attend the State of the Union, reports are that she was arrested inside the Capitol chamber.

MORE... 9:08p ET - CNN's "Breaking News" banner announcing the arrest at their website now removed, shortly after CNN reported arrest on air. No further news available currently at their site on the arrest...

9:14p ET - AP reports on CNN's report. Says, "Activist Cindy Sheehan Arrested at Capitol".

9:30p ET - The BRAD BLOG has confirmed the arrest moments ago with David Swanson of AfterDowningStreet.org.

According to Swanson, Sheehan was "arrested for wearing the shirt she was wearing all day, which had the number of U.S. troops killed in Iraq...She was lifted out of her seat [in the Capitol Chamber gallery] by the Capitol Police and taken away."

Swanson told The BRAD BLOG moment ago that Sheehan is "now under arrest and lockup by Capitol Police." He confirmed that moments ago with Gael Murphy, a co-founder of CodePink, an organization which has been working Sheehan. Murphy spoke by cell with Sheehan after the arrest, and they are currently arranging for an attorney for her.

"This not the Park Police," said Swanson. "We're used to getting arrested by them. This was the Capitol Police....She didn't even want to go to the speech, she said she couldn't stand to listen to Bush, but she went. She didn't even protest, she was just wearing the same shirt she'd be wearing all day, a black shirt with the number of troops killed. It was already 'out of date' and she had to add 3 more to the previous number."

9:40p ET - Reports we are receiving are in conflict with AP's updated report that Sheehan had a protest banner prepared to be unfurled. It was, according to our sources, her T-Shirt which seems to be the given reason for her arrest... According to AP:

A Capitol police official reportedly said Sheehan had unfurled a banner, which is a violation of House rules.

We cannot confirm the "banner" reports, and have been told by several sources the arrest was due to the T-Shirt she was wearing after already being allowed into the Capitol chamber where Bush was to deliver his State of the Union address just moments later...

Cindy Sheehan's son Casey was killed in Iraq in 2004.

9:50p ET - Reuters confirms arrest. Few details given.

9:55p ET - Photo of the arrest from Reuters...

10:02p ET - CNN files its story. Sticks to "banner" reporting:

WASHINGTON (CNN) --- Peace activist Cindy Sheehan was arrested Tuesday in the House chamber after she unfurled an anti-war banner before President Bush's State of the Union address.

Capitol police arrested Sheehan and questioned her for about an hour in a separate area of the House, a senior House official said.

Sheehan, who became a vocal war opponent after her son was killed in Iraq, was an invited guest of Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-California, who has called for a withdrawal of troops in Iraq and supports legislation for the creation of a Department of Peace.

10:20p ET - AP updates their report. Confirms original exclusive BRAD BLOG report that it was a T-Shirt, not a banner that led to Sheehan's arrest:

[Capitol Police Sgt. Kimberly] Schneider said Sheehan had worn a T-shirt with an anti-war slogan to the speech and covered it up until she took her seat. Police warned her that such displays were not allowed, but she did not respond, the spokeswoman said.

Police handcuffed Sheehan and removed her from the gallery before Bush arrived.

10:39p ET - Sheehan still in jail, Morning Shows "fighting over her"...

David Swanson, in D.C. tells The BRAD BLOG that Sheehan is still in jail. Swanson had been previously arrested along with Sheehan at earlier protests.

He tells us, "Attorneys are trying to get her out. Media is fighting over here...Today Show, Good Morning America, they all want her...but she has to get out of jail first."

11:30p ET - Bob Fertik reports:

There are 200 protesters standing outside the Capitol Police HQ between 1st and 2nd on D St NE (between Hart SOB and Union Station). They are chanting and demanding Cindy's release. Tell the DC media to cover the protest!

He also suggests...

Call the White House Comment Line 202-456-1111,1,1 and express your outrage that the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq was arrested for wearing a t-shirt with the number of soldiers killed in Iraq!!!!!

11:49p ET - Village Voice has more on Sheehan's recent arrests, including this evening's.

11:54p ET - CNN's Ed Henry finally corrects their report and confirms it was a T-shirt that was the reason for Sheehan's arrest.

He just reported during Anderson Cooper:

"She entered the gallery wearing a shirt with some sort of anti-war slogan...they were afraid she was going to do something with it in front of the cameras".

What, like wear it? The only opinions allowed in the people's Capitol tonight are George W. Bush's, we guess.

Here's another opinion on the "State of the Union" from outside the capitol tonight.

12:05a ET - Police Surround HQ to fend off Protesters... More from Fertik...

David Swanson reports by phone on the scene: During the protest in front of the Capitol Police HQ, 2-3 dozen police locked arms and pushed the crowd across the street. A protester named James from World Can't Wait was arrested for chanting "Free Cindy Now" with a megaphone. As the police grabbed the megaphone, they hit a woman protester in the head, but she is ok. They also kicked Aliska from World Can't Wait in the head, and she required treatment in an ambulance before she was released. Cindy is now being taken to the Central Processing Center in Judiciary Square, and the crowd is following her.

World Can't Wait is an organization that held a protest near the Reflection Pond on the elipse today, calling for Bush to step down.

12:18a ET - MSNBC now has an online poll on whether the Capitol Police should have arrested Sheehan for wearing a T-shirt. Go register your opinion...

12:22a ET - SHEEHAN FINALLY RELEASED! SAYS SHE WAS "ROUGHED UP"...According to Fertik who is in touch with David Swanson...

David reports Cindy has just been released. She was filmed by 3 networks and answered a few quick questions and mentioned she was "roughed up" - David said she looked tired and frustrated. She went off to sleep and will appear on the Today show in the morning.

12:44a ET- NBC reports the shirt in violation of the "law" read: "2,245 Dead - How Many More??"

Attytood points out:

Did you know that in 1971, the Supreme Court said it was unconstitutional to arrest a man who wore a "F--- the Draft" T-shirt into the courthouse? (Cohen v. California, you can look it up.) So now Alito's on the court for 45 minutes and your civil liberties are already going down the toilet. You were warned.

1:21a ET - MBare gets the money shot!

Note the hand-corrected number on the shirt, as we reported previously, since 3 U.S. troops had been killed in Iraq since Sheehan put the short on earlier today.

Mbare points out that moments later, in Bush's speech, just after Sheehan's arrest, he said (without a hint of irony):

"Every step toward freedom in the world makes our country safer --- so we will act boldly in freedom's cause. Far from being a hopeless dream, the advance of freedom is the great story of our time.

No one can deny the success of freedom, but some men rage and fight against it.
...
We love our freedom, and we will fight to keep it."

So will we, Mr. "President"...

2:41am ET - David Swanson, now safe and sound back home, has details and more photos of both Sheehan wearing the shirt earlier in the day, as well as VR's Impeachment Truck (NOTE: Who is that debonair gent behind Sheehan in this photo? ;-)

3:13am ET - One final thought for tonight. Also with a hat-tip to MBare...

U.S. Constitution: First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Good night America.

NEXT DAY UPDATE: More on Sheehan's arrest, her own words, and the Republican Congressman's wife who was asked to leave for wearing her own T-shirt in support of the troops now posted here...

MORE UPDATE: Acceptable State of the Union protest...

FURTHER UPDATE: Capitol Cops admit they "Screwed up"! NBC reports they will be dropping all charges!

NOTE: We've now restored the Comment link that we had to temporarily turn off previously while this site was getting pounded with hits, making it impossible to update the item. Thanks for your understanding.

ReddIt this story!



By Winter Patriot on 9/26/2005 9:06pm PT  
Special BRAD BLOG / Velvet Revolution coverage
of the Sep 24-26 Rally in D.C.
Guest blogged by Winter Patriot

Cindy Sheehan and more than three hundred others were arrested this afternoon near the White House. From the look of this photo (courtesy of MSNBC) it seems she did not resist.

The mainstream media have not been quite as silent about Cindy Sheehan today as they were on Saturday; for instance, the Washington Post has an article and MSNBC has another.

Sadly, I don't have any inside sources or further details on this one. But I'm certain we'll all be watching very closely.

UPDATE FROM BRAD 9/27/05: Blogger, patriot (and occassional BRAD BLOG commenter) "Greyhair" has some great coverage and photos of the arrests! Thank you!

Also, RAW has the story of Conyers' inquiry into the troubling reports of hundreds arrested without charges, held handcuffed on buses for up to 10 hours! Have I mentioned "God Bless John Conyers" lately?

ReddIt this story!



BRAD SHOW's 'Operation Noble Cause' Continues...
On RAW RADIO - LIVE from Crawford, Texas at HIGH NOON...
By Brad Friedman on 8/29/2005 7:48am PT  

U.S. Army Specialist Tomas Young has some questions for George W. Bush. He's never met with the Commander-in-Chief who sent him into Sadr City, Iraq in a canvass covered truck during a massive uprising in that city on April 4, 2004. The same city on the same day that Cindy Sheehan's son Casey was killed.

Tomas was lucky. He was only paralyzed from the chest down. Amongst other things he'd like to ask of Bush, is why he won't allow funding for stem cell research which might eventually restore the spine that he lost in Bush's War. A spine, as Tomas explained to us yesterday on The BRAD SHOW, which apparently Bush has never had.

Tomas and his new wife Bree (also pictured), came to Crawford from Kansas City on their honeymoon to "stand" in support of Cindy Sheehan.

We now have our interview with Tomas up in the BRAD SHOW "Operation Noble Cause" Archives shortly, with much more news, sound and the stories of the people of Camp Casey on today's LIVE BRAD SHOW from Camp Casey beginning at HIGH NOON in Crawford (1p ET, 12p CT, 11a MT, 10a). We are hoping to feature several Bush supporters on today's show!

Until then, WhiteRoseSociety.org is looping the previous days BRADcast throughout the night (live listening links here and here).

We have now broadcast 42 hours of LIVE coverage from on the ground in Crawford, Texas in the last seven days, simulcast over at least 7 different radio networks at various times, including Air America for several hours on Saturday. All hosted by your friendly citizen blogger, Brad Friedman. We are the only broadcast "organization" to feature such live daily coverage!

Your DONATIONS continue to be greatly needed and very much appreciated in order to help make all of this possible!

(Photo courtesy of Alaskagyrl.blogspot.com)

UPDATE: Tomas Young's interview with The BRAD SHOW and other audio highlights have been added to the Operation Noble Cause archives!

UPDATE 2/12/06: A profile of Tomas Young was run today on 60 Minutes and includes a brief shot of our interview from Camp Casey with Young. Details, video here...

ReddIt this story!



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