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GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


With An Assist From Republicans And Fox News and Some Cheap Shot Gay-Baiting at on Rosie O'Donnell's Expense...
By Alan Breslauer on 1/27/2007 3:26am PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


The Soup's Joel McHale zings Republicans at the beginning of this Fox & Friends clip and then smacks Fox News at the end. Sandwiched in between is some really uncomfortable banter between the three hosts about the birds and the bees and how many roosters it takes, before Brian Kilmeade ends the clip with a crude Rosie O'Donnell smear. Poor Rosie. Fox has swift boated her so often and mercilessly lately that you'd think she was the junior Senator from New York. The clip runs 0:55.

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By Alan Breslauer on 1/23/2007 2:12pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


Bill Kristol responds to Shepherd Smith's questions about whether the White House has a "Plan B" by stating, "they're serious about it...they're serious about staying in Iraq and winning and they're serious about being serious about judging whether we are winning. No more happy talk". Kristol seems to believe this is praiseworthy. As for Plan B? You'll have to judge Kristol's response for yourself.

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Shame on Huffington Post for Giving Him a Platform to Do So...
By Brad Friedman on 1/22/2007 11:21pm PT  

Treacherous Republican wordsmith/pollster/spinman Frank Luntz sinks to new depths in pretending to offer "advice" for the Democratic Party in a condescending little screed posted at Huff Po on Sunday.

I'll let you make what you will of the bulk of his self-serving nonsense. But setting aside Luntz's apparent inability --- rather transparently, I'll add, for someone whose business is supposedly language --- to keep himself from using the pejoratively intended "Democrat" when he means "Democratic," I'll focus on only one major point.

For a man who damned well understands the importance of words he sure did manage to drop one huge rhetorical and literal LIE smack-dab into the middle of his editorial. He writes:

Senator Barbara Boxer can't really believe that a single woman without children is totally incapable of feeling emotional loss just because she hasn't had any children in combat, can she? Yet that's exactly what she said to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Of course, that's not "exactly" what Boxer said to Rice at all. Nor is it even close to what she said. What she said was EXACTLY:

BOXER: Who pays the price? I'm not going to pay a personal price. My kids are too old and my grandchild is too young. You're not going to pay a particular price, as I understand it, with an immediate family. So who pays the price? The American military and their families. And I just want to bring us back to that fact.

Further, Luntz twists his disingenuous knife by adding:

Boxer could have been a constructive opponent. Instead, she chose to poke Rice straight in the eye with a stick sharpened by a crude personal attack. It was a cheap shot that made even the most hardened Washington insiders cringe.

Speaking of "cheap shots", if Luntz doesn't know by now that the phony non-incident he describes as having "made even the most hardened Washington insiders cringe" is little more than the Luntzian creation of White House spokeshole Tony Snow as aided and abetted by both the wingnut media and the NYTimes then he shouldn't be allowed in public, much less on Huff Po.

For the record, we covered the disingenuous brouhaha from the get-go as it sprang from a call we made for a Congress member to ask the White House about the casualty estimates for their Iraq "surge plan" (a Luntzian turn of phrase if we've ever seen one). As it turns out, they didn't bother to make any. Or so Condi claimed during the Senate hearings. (More relevant links to the notable points in our coverage are below.)

Shame on Luntz for purposely misleading readers. Shame on Huffington Post for giving a platform to an out-and-out liar. I don't care how much undeserved "celebrity" the man can claim, nor how much "the other side" should be heard from. If "the other side" is going to simply lie, then there is no reason that anyone, much less Huffington Post, should give them a platform to do so.

UPDATES:

  • To HuffPo's credit, they have cross-posted this blog item.
  • BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger Alan Breslauer calls to our attention one of his blog items from last summer highlighting a video clip of Luntz demonstrating yet more disingenuousness, along with Alan's personal observations of Luntz who was both a professor of his and, apparently, a frat house drinking buddy...

PREVIOUS RELATED BRAD BLOG ARTICLES:

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Colbert: 'If you're an act... then what am I?'
By Brad Friedman on 1/19/2007 9:01am PT  

Sure, these will likely be everywhere today. But for good reason. Colbert hit it out of the park twice yesterday. First when he appeared on O'Reilly's show and then again when O'Reilly appeared on his. Both infinitely worth the watch. And to underscore Colbert's genius, the cover that he shows of O'Reilly's book and the last line of his interview with O'Reilly on his own show. Both nothing less than solid gold...

COLBERT ON O'REILLY'S SHOW

O'REILLY ON COLBERT'S SHOW

(Hat-tip to RAW STORY for the videos.)

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The Once-Great Paper Misrepresents the Facts, Quotes Only Rightwingers and Misrepresents Some of them to Suggest They are 'Liberal'
PLUS: An Invitation to Bill O'Reilly...
By Brad Friedman on 1/13/2007 3:21pm PT  

The New York Times today joins the White House, the disingenuous Rightwing media and blogs, and even several unnamed supposed non-Rightwingers in purposely misconstruing Sen. Barbara Boxer's question to Condi Rice at last Thursday's Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Bush's new policy to escalate troop commitment in Iraq.

I reported on the controversy over the phony Boxer/Rice brouhaha yesterday here, after originally calling on a Congress member to ask the very question that Boxer asked (and which the Times ignored) last Sunday and again after Bush's speech on Wednesday night in the face of his supporting, yet callous, comments on the new policy that "we must expect more Iraqi and American casualties."

If the way in which the Times twisted the facts of the event was unintentional, the only alternative then is that the reporters who covered it, Helene Cooper and Thom Shanker, and the editors who allowed the article to go through, are utterly incapable of even the simplest intelligent analysis of a critical and relevant news event and, frankly, shouldn't be working for a paper as still-important to this country as the New York Times.

Picking up on the phony controversy over the prelude to Boxer's question of whether the White House had "an estimate of the number of casualties we expect from this surge?" --- the stunning answer from the Secretary of State, if she's to be believed, is that no, they did not --- the Times joined Fox "News" and NYPost and the other wingnut outlets in both twisting Boxer's comments and forwarding the unsupported notion that there was some sort of personal slur built into them.

The Times quotes Boxer's "offending" phrase --- one that even Rice admits not being offended at, until after the White House Press Secretary, Tony Snow, suggested the comments were "outrageous" later on --- as follows:

During the Thursday hearing, Ms. Boxer told Ms. Rice: "You’re not going to pay any particular price, as I understand it, with an immediate family."

Wow! The height of personal rudeness! Boxer really smacked down Rice for not being married and having no children! A comment which several suddenly-"feminist" Rightwing outlets characterized as "One Great Leap (Backwards) for Womankind!" just after Snow coincidentally called it a "great leap backward for feminism" in his official response.

Problem is, the way the Times characterized the "controversy" in the graf reposted above leaves out the rest of Boxer's comment and thus takes it completely out of context. Here's what she actually said in the lead-up to her important all-but-ignored question and response from Rice:

BOXER: Who pays the price? I'm not going to pay a personal price. My kids are too old and my grandchild is too young. You're not going to pay a particular price, as I understand it, with an immediate family. So who pays the price? The American military and their families. And I just want to bring us back to that fact.

Even Rice admitted in her comments to the Times that "It didn't actually dawn on me that she was saying, 'you don’t have children who can go to war'."

Of course it didn't actually "dawn on" you, Ms. Rice. Because it didn't actually happen that way.

At least until Tony Snow took the opportunity to brilliantly turn the focus away from both Rice's answer revealing that the White House hadn't bothered to measure the cost in increased deaths to U.S. troops before announcing their new policy ("Senator, I don't think that any of us, uh, have a number. That, of expected casualties.") and from the fact that both Republicans and Democrats alike on the Senate committee were highly critical of the White House escalation plan for the Iraq War.

Snow's comments, of course, were the marching orders to the various Rightwing outlets who were all too happy to twist Boxer's comments in the very same way. They all "reported" the exchange in the same phony context the following day (as I previously described here.)

While attacking the messenger to completely distract from the message is a time-honored and well-expected tactic from this White House and their sycophantic supporters, it continues to be distressing to see the once-great "Paper of Record" irresponsibly pick up that ball and run in the same disingenuous direction. Who needs Judith Miller?

To make matters worse, not only did the Times manage to only quote the mangled "analysis" of "Conservative" blogs and commentators in their coverage of the exchange, they even misrepresented a group which, at the first blush of the Times description of them, would seem indicate that they would have been an ally of Boxer's.

Appearing to defect from support of the Democratic Senator is a group called Project 21. The Times characterized the statement of a member of the group this way...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 1/10/2007 4:00pm PT  

NOTE: Yes, we know the chyron is from a political debate show. But does anybody have any examples of similarly obnoxious/partisan/unsupported chyrons from Fox saying something like "George W. Bush: War Criminal" or under the former Speaker of the House "Dennis Hasbeen"? If so, we'd love to see them. Versus endless examples like the one above or this crap and this nonsense, or Fox calling Ted Kennedy a "hostile enemy" of America on one of their "news" programs (versus debate) as they did this morning (video).

I understand there is someone --- I think his name is Colmes or something --- who is supposed to represent the other side on that "debate" show. Does he actually show up for work? Does he give a damn that the side he's supposed to represent is so regularly shat upon by the producers of the show which has his name in the title? You probably don't need to answer that...

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No Prob. Just Blame Someone Else...
By Brad Friedman on 1/9/2007 3:13pm PT  


DRUDGE made the usual jerk of himself yesterday by slamming the Dems for taking the day off for a football game, when in reality, it was later revealed by RAW STORY to have been done "in the spirit of bi-partisan" after a request to take the day off from Republican Minority Leader John Boehner.

"Democrats ran to expand the work week in the House to 5 days. But guess how long that lasted? Not even one week!," Drudge breathlessly sniffed beneath his FLASH headline.

The Wingnut 'sphere had a field day with the headline, as they always do when instructed by DRUDGE. Including, of course, the sycophantic losers at Fox "News'" FOX and Friends who yucked it up on cue at the Dems expense all morning, according to this report by Newshounds.

When the truth was later revealed, and with what should have been egg on their face, the Fox "News" phonies this morning predictably played down their error with the usual "some had said," taking no accountability for the fact that the "some" had been them.

Hat-tip for the report, and the video, to Newshounds: "Watching FOX so you don't have to."

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By Brad Friedman on 1/5/2007 1:25pm PT  

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VIDEO - Hannity Begins to Carry Disingenuous Buckets of Anti-Democracy Water
Jennings May Have to Play the Congressional Constitutional Card to Gain the House Seat Which Obviously Should Belong to Her...
By Brad Friedman on 12/6/2006 3:11pm PT  

It's a lovely change of pace when some of the other "big boy bloggers" beat me to the punch on Election Integrity-related stories. Perhaps I can start sleeping in for a while. I could use it.

That said, TPMMuckraker gives us a fine update on the FL-13 sitch, and Sean Hannity's virtuoso performance in what is likely his most disingenuous performance to date last night on Hannity & Colmes, where Republican Vern Buchanan spouted off with neither a Democratic nor a non-partisan Election Integrity advocate to counter his nonsense.

In addition to TPMM's points, it should also be pointed out that Hannity stated incorrectly --- twice --- that Sarasota is the strongest Republican stronghold in the contest. That, despite, his later admission that the Democratic Christine Jennings won the area by 7%.

As well, Hannity (again unchecked) is allowed to rant about how Republicans don't challenge elections when they lose, they accept defeat gracefully. Guess Sean doesn't read The BRAD BLOG and thus doesn't know about the Conservative TX Supreme Court Justice Steven Smith, or the mess in Maricopa County, AZ, still percolating from back in 2004, or the fact that Rick Santorum and the PA Republican party demanded that touch-screen systems where votes reportedly flipped be impounded in 27 counties on Election Day, just to name a few instances.

But we'd expect nothing less from water boy Hannity.

Most of note in the video, perhaps, is Buchanan's un-checked (and by now, expected) outrageous claim that Jennings is "destroying democracy" by calling for a revote. A funny turn of phrase from a guy who is doing everything he can to ensure that the rather clear voices of the voters are ignored in favor of a 369 vote "victory" gained only due to faulty, paperless touch-screen voting machines.

Even Buchanan is unable, in the clip, to explain why 18,000 votes in Jennings's strongest county simply disappeared. Of course, he'd have to admit he lost if forced to come up with an answer to that mystery. So he avoids the question twice by explaining only that "there's a lot of speculation out there you can read."

Got nothing, Vern? But don't give a damn anyway? We thought so. Now that's what we call "destroying democracy"!

In other FL-13 coverage around the 'sphere, both the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and a group of political scientists [PDF] are averring that it was bad ballot design which caused the problem (The BRAD BLOG earlier posted a photo of the way in which the race was displayed on the touch-screen systems, such that it would have been very easy for voters not to see the race at all on Sarasota's ES&S touch-screen machines.)

The "bad ballot design" explanation, however --- that voters didn't notice the race --- fails to account for all of the affidavits from voters claiming they tried and tried to vote in the race, but couldn't get their vote to register properly for Jennings, as one of the attorneys representing the voter lawsuit calling for a revote recently told us.

Finally, DailyKos (of all places) has some decent front page coverage of the rather conservative (we've found) Election Law professor Rick Hasen's explanation [PDF] of the Constitutional card that can be played by the U.S. House to settle the matter. At this point, it's looking more and more like that will be the way this thing is ultimately settled...

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

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Fortunately, We're Not at War or Anything...
By Brad Friedman on 12/5/2006 11:09am PT  

The Senate confirmation hearings for the nomination of Robert Gates to be the next Secretary of Defense were not carried live on any broadcast or cable news networks. Neither C-SPAN 1 or 2 carried it live either, although they have an excuse (by charter, as we understand it, they must carry live coverage from the House and Senate floor when in session.)

It's a good thing we're not at war, that we have a broad national consensus about the direction of the nation and its military, and that the matter of who will lead the Pentagon as the next Sec. of Defense isn't all that important to the country at this time.

Otherwise, we might have suggested the cable news outlets' decision to carry live coverage of a press conference on a missing man in Oregon (he's still missing), the auction of Princess Diana's death car (she's still dead), and Gwyneth Paltrow's comments about America (she didn't say them), was somewhat less than responsible or in the best interests of the nation they like to suggest they are serving.

Just one of the benefits of being at peace around the globe. Thank you, media.

(P.S. We were able to listen to the hearings live on the radio via NPR. Gates says we're not winning the War in Iraq, blah, blah, blah, who cares...)

UPDATE: Who needs cable? David Swanson of AfterDowningStreet.org decides to be the media, he's live blogging the event from within the hearing room.

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...And Mexico's Presidential Melee...
By Alan Breslauer on 11/30/2006 11:34am PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


Neil Cavuto was outraged by the scuffle that took place in the Mexican National Congress on Tuesday in continuing spillover from the highly controversial presidential election. Earlier reports here, here and here, suggest there is a great deal of evidence that Vicente Fox's ruling party was only able to retain the presidency through massive election fraud. Yet, Cavuto's concern is not for the 41 million likely disenfranchised voters but that order was not maintained. Al Gore's graceful concession in the hotly contested 2000 election, by contrast, is an example of a working democracy and a working Constitution.

Unfortunately, the end of the clip (1:35) was cut off by Tivo and the late night replay was cut off by Fox as it switched to a live broadcast. My apologies.

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Face the Nation Host Schieffer Critical of Fox over OJ Story
By Alan Breslauer on 11/19/2006 12:02pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


Bob Schieffer's commentary this morning on CBS' Face the Nation is highly critical of Fox, Judith Regan and Rupert Murdoch for publishing OJ's new "if I did it" book and for giving the former football star two hours of prime time television to promote the fictional confession. Throw in the millions of dollars being funneled to OJ and one hardly remembers the similarly disgusting congressional page scandal.

Schieffer: "Someone, I think it was William F. Buckley, once said, something doesn't have to be against the law to be wrong. This one is more than wrong. It is just awful."

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Says He Enjoys Using 'The Email' but Son Does Not For Fear of Subpoenas...
By Brad Friedman on 11/15/2006 10:35am PT  

Yesterday, at ThinkProgress...

Last night on Fox News, former President George H.W. Bush said the current political climate has "gotten so adversarial that it’s ugly." Asked to offer an explanation for why there is this "incivility," Bush pinned the blame on bloggers. "It’s probably a little worse now given electronic media and the bloggers and all these kinds of things," he said. Watch it:

Also, Bush revealed that he enjoys using "the email" but lamented that his son, President George W. Bush, cannot for fear that the emails would get subpoenaed. Bush worried that presidents who used email would be forced to prove "that you were telling the truth and all this stuff."

Video and transcript here...

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Right-Wing News Site WorldNetDaily Reports $2 Million Paid to Palestinian Terrorists for Release of Fox 'News' Hostages!
By Brad Friedman on 11/15/2006 8:35am PT  

Was it Fox? Was it Bush? Or someone else who seems to have paid $2 million to Palestinian terrorist organizations for the release of Fox "News" correspondents held hostage in Gaza last Summer?

JERUSALEM – Palestinian terror groups and security organizations in the Gaza Strip received $2 million from a United States source in exchange for the release of Fox News employees Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig, who were kidnapped here last summer, a senior leader of one of the groups suspected of the abductions told WND.

The terror leader, from the Gaza-based Popular Resistance Committees, said his organization's share of the money was used to purchase weapons, which he said would be utilized "to hit the Zionists."

He said he expects the payments for Centanni and Wiig's freedom will encourage Palestinian groups to carry out further kidnappings.
...
"We used 100 percent of the money for one precise goal – our war against the Zionists," the Committees leader said.

Unbelievable. WorldNetDaily has the extraordinary story.

(Big hat-tip to John Aravosis for the find!)

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'At What Point Do We Stop Saying This is Accidental,' Asks Radio Host Bob Kincaid
By Brad Friedman on 10/11/2006 8:29pm PT  

A rightwing extremist "news" outlet, Newsmax.com, was apparently also unable to help labelling disgraced Republican sexual predator Rep. Mark Foley as a Democrat in a report released on their website this morning.

Our buddy Bob Kincaid of Head-On Radio alerted us to this report today from NewsMax's "chief Washington correspondent," Ronald Kessler...

Page Scandal Goes Deeper

Ronald Kessler
Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2006

The scandal involving inappropriate e-mail messages by former Rep. Mark Foley, D-Fla., to congressional pages understandably has led to calls for abolishing the page program.

Kincaid asks us via email: "At what point do we stop saying that this is accidental?"

The original appearance of such an "accident" occurred, as we reported it last week, when Fox "News" labelled the Republican Foley as a Democrat in a chyron over a video cutaway. Three of them, in fact. Across two different O'Reilly Factor segments. After our report brought attention to the issue, Fox blanked out that part of the screen during their two subsequent of the program later that night.

The next day, Associated Press did the same thing, but at least had the decency to both correct the problem by changing the "D" to "R" and noting the original "error" at the bottom of the report in a journalistically appropriate way when they did so.

Like phony news organization Fox, who told Editor & Publisher a few days later that they felt no "correction per se" was necessary, phony news organization Newsmax apparently doesn't believe they need to tell anybody of the "error." They changed the "D" in their story to "R" later in the day --- after who knows how many had read the article --- but didn't bother to note the change in the updated article.

So much for Republican journalistic ethics. So much for Republicans taking personal responsibility. For anything.

UPDATE 3:33pm PT: Editor & Publisher picks up this story...

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