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By Brad Friedman on 7/30/2010 11:00am PT  

As the Washington Post continues its shameful drift farther and farther to the right, it has long demonstrated the inability to use the "L" word, no matter how appropriate, and even seemed to support rightwing propagandist Andrew Breitbart's deceptively edited hit-video on Shirley Sherrod last week, long after everyone else had come to realize it was a hoax. So it was nice to see E.J. Dionne's column in WaPo on Monday in which he actually used the correct words to identify the facts of the matter.

He used the words "right-wing propaganda," as in the headline for his column: "Enough right-wing propaganda." That's right. What Andrew Breitbart and his ilk do is not opinion, it's not "conservative journalism" or even "activism." It's propaganda. And it's certainly not "conservative" by any stretch of the imagination. It's right-wing. There is nothing "conservative" about it.

Using a phrase akin to the ones we've applied to Breitbart for a very long time, Dionne went on to refer to him, accurately, as a "right-wing hit man," as in: "The administration's response to the doctored video pushed by right-wing hit man Andrew Breitbart was shameful."

And then, the "L" word appeared in the pages of the Washington Post. Finally. As Dionne appropriately used the word "liars," as in: "When an outlandish charge for which there is no evidence is treated as an on-the-one-hand-and-on-the-other-hand issue, the liars win."

Good for Dionne. I suspect he'll be fired immediately.




By Brad Friedman on 7/29/2010 9:28am PT  

From AP:

Ousted Agriculture Department employee Shirley Sherrod said Thursday she will sue a conservative blogger who posted an edited video of her making racially tinged remarks last week.

The edited video posted by Andrew Breitbart led Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to ask Sherrod to resign, a decision he reconsidered after seeing the entire video of her March speech to a local NAACP group. In the full speech, Sherrod spoke of racial reconciliation and lessons she learned after initially hesitating to help a white farmer save his home.

She said she doesn't want an apology from Breitbart for posting the video that took her comments out of context, but told a crowd at the National Association of Black Journalists annual convention that she would "definitely sue."

If filed, Sherrod's suit against the discredited pathological liar, race-baiter, and propagandist Breitbart would follow on another lawsuit recently filed against two of his employees, James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles, for having secretly video-taped an ACORN worker in violation of California state law. The worker, as all of the others secretly taped in the O'Keefe/Giles/Breitbart hit videos, was found to have committed no crimes, despite disinformation suggesting otherwise forwarded on Breitbart's websites and other rightwing and non-rightwing media outlets.

The suit against O'Keefe and Giles, filed just over two weeks ago by former San Diego ACORN worker Juan Carlos Vera for invasion of privacy, leaves open the possibility that a number of other defendants will be added to the complaint. As The BRAD BLOG noted in our coverage of that suit, "we'll be neither surprised nor saddened to see Breitbart named as one" of the defendants added in the not-too-distant future.

Between that lawsuit, and Sherrod's, if she keeps her promise to "definitely sue," it looks like Breitbart, who has spent many years disingenuously decrying the "journalistic malpractice" of others, may soon get a better definition of what that phrase actually means. For those of us who have seen Breitbart's manic and embarrassing defense of his phony ACORN "Pimp" Hoax videos --- the deceptively-edited tapes he published prior to the deceptively-edited Sherrod video he published --- we've already got a pretty good idea of what that looks like.




By Brad Friedman on 7/28/2010 11:00am PT  

NYU media prof Jay Rosen offers a number of observations well worth reading in regard to the classified Afghan War documents posted to Wikileaks this week, and how this new form of "journalism" changes the game in many different respects (and in very good ones, overall, I would argue).

One of his points in particular caught my eye, as it seems quite pertinent to the extraordinary allegations of former FBI translator turned whistleblower Sibel Edmonds which we've been attempting to dig into and report on --- with far too much exclusivity --- for years here at The BRAD BLOG. Rosen's observation, posted below, echoes the general notion I've come to, of late, in regard to her story, and the lack of media coverage of it. In short, it's likely that the Sibel Edmonds story is simply too large for the media to handle --- even those organizations which aren't, themselves, directly implicated in her explosive allegations.

I'm on the road this week (and for the next many), so don't have time at the moment to provide full background on the Edmonds story for those who don't know of it yet, but we've got plenty here at The BRAD BLOG from our years of coverage if you'd like to poke around. Here's a link to one of my recent Hustler articles on her, which offers the basics and includes some discussion of the "too big to bust" theory that Rosen seems to be articulating below.

His point here seems as germane in regard to the Edmonds story as it does to the massive leak of the classified Afghan War documents which he was writing about...

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




By Brad Friedman on 7/26/2010 5:23pm PT  

"Why isn't the media covering this story?" MoveOn.org demands to know.

"Right-wing activist Andrew Breitbart has admitted --- on tape --- that he's a terrorist-lover. So why isn't the media covering it?," they ask, getting their priorities right for the first time in a long time, and adding the option to "Sign our petition demanding that the media cover this shocking new revelation."

"We've just uncovered a video in which Andrew Breitbart admits he 'hearts' terrorists while a conservative audience applauds," explain the progressive journalists at MoveOn*.

"Is this video real? Hey, video can't lie, right? Just ask CBS, The Washington Post, Fox, and other news outlets who've faithfully covered Andrew Breitbart's videos," says MoveOn, while failing to name the NYTimes specifically, despite the "paper of record's" egregious leadership in this same regard.

"Our video is just as truthful as any Breitbart has ever released, and deserves equal coverage from the news media," notes MoveOn, with no small bit of evidence to back up the assertion. Here's the damning video providing incontrovertible evidence of Breitbart's love for al-Qaeda:


Not since our own "Andrew Breitbart Pedophilia Investigation," have we seen such a shocking video!

* If James O'Keefe, Hannah Giles, and Breitbart are "conservative journalists," as they and many in the non-wingnut media have reported, then yes, the folks at MoveOn are nothing other than "progressive journalists."

* * *

And...In recently related news at The BRAD BLOG: Andrew Breitbart is an unapologetic race-baiter and pathological liar. Also, despite the Obama Administration's swift apology and new job offer to Shirley Sherrod after they fell for Breitbart's deceptively-edited video of her, which resulted in her losing her job, the cowardly White House has still not apologized to ACORN for having fallen for Breitbart's previous deceptively-edited ACORN "Pimp" Hoax videos, which resulted in hundreds, if not thousands, of Americans being put out of work, as well as largely killing a four-decade-old, anti-poverty, pro-democracy community organization which provided vital support and services to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of low- and middle-income Americans who needed such support and services the most.




By Brad Friedman on 7/21/2010 2:41pm PT  

Vilsack and the White House have issued apologies to Shirley Sherrod and asked her to take a new "unique" job at the USDA.

I must hit the road (heading towards Vegas, where, yes, I plan to stop into Netroots Nation for the first time), so can't offer more details on all of this for now.

But just one point: The WH seems to have done the right thing in apologizing to Sherrod, and seem to be making good on the one job they cost in inappropriately firing her based on a deceptively edited hoax video tape posted by pathological liar and con-artist Andrew Breitbart. Now how about those thousands of jobs lost at ACORN, the four-decade old anti-poverty, pro-democracy organization, after the President signed a bill defunding them based on an almost identical, deceptively-edited video tape hoax as perpetrated by the same Andrew Breitbart? Do they plan to make that one right as well now? If not, why not?

See ya from Vegas...

* * *

UPDATE: Looks like Joe Conason at Salon has the same thought: "Now reopen Breitbart's ACORN fraud --- and get the story right"




By Brad Friedman on 7/21/2010 1:08pm PT  

It's a neat trick. Andrew Breitbart, the pathological liar, race-baiter, propagandist, and rabidly partisan dirty-trickster, posts a deceptively edited video (again), to which media and Democratic officials cowardly knee-jerk in reaction (again), before the video is ultimately discovered to have been a deceptively edited hoax. Then, rather than copping to having been a pathological liar, race-baiter, propagandist, and rabidly partisan dirty-trickster, Breitbart criticizes the media and those others who bought into the hoax that he himself perpetrated.

You see, it was all the media's fault for being irresponsible enough to buy into his own bullshit. Well played, Mr. Breitbart - you pathological liar, race-baiter, propagandist, and rabidly partisan ratfucker.

Breitbart, as usual, is partially correct, which is why his ratfucking continues to have any effect at all. The media did, at first, buy into his Shirley Sherrod scam. And not just Fox "News," who more than simply "bought into it," actually played their usual vital role in the rightwing disinfo food chain by offering a news-like presentation to the false story, as if it's a real one which deserves coverage by others. But others in the non-wingnut, theoretically-legitimate media also treated this story, initially, as legitimate. For that matter, even after the hoax was revealed for what it was, Washington Post, late last night, granted the phony story more legitimacy by "privileging the lie" and burying the by-then known truth in the 15th paragraph of its coverage.

Today, however, as the dust settles, Breitbart's lie has been uncharacteristically exposed in a record 24-hours or so, and he finds himself backed into a corner threatening whatever legitimacy he had foolishly been granted by adults who ought to have known better long ago. So now, the very professional snake-oil salesman and con-artist is attempting to riggle out of that corner with an all new lie that moves the goal posts from his original, now-discredited smear, to an entirely new, made-up-out-of-whole cloth claim. To wit: Since he was discovered to have lied in the first place, Breitbart is now claiming, to anyone stupid enough to listen, that his original blog post where he published the deceptively-edited video, was "not about Shirley Sherrod. It's not about Shirley Sherrod. I can say it 20 times. It's about the NAACP."

Oh, and also, he now adds in desperation upon having taken on a foe who was willing to fight back: "I feel bad that they made this about her, and I feel sorry that they made this about her...Watching how they've misconstrued, how the media has misconstrued the intention behind this, I do feel a sympathy for her plight."

They made this about her? The media misconstrued the intention behind this?

Of course, those claims are complete lies as well. As usual. And they're betrayed by his very own words. As usual...

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




By Brad Friedman on 7/20/2010 7:43pm PT  

For those who have asked, no, I'm not particularly interested in Andrew Breitbart's latest, deceptively-edited video scam campaign which, shamefully, the Obama Administration and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack fell for before bothering to view the whole video.

We did what we did earlier this year --- exposing Breitbart's ACORN scam in extraordinary detail and for months on end --- in hopes that the rest of the media would not fall for such scams again in the future.

Clearly, the entirety of the corporate MSM has yet to fully learn the lesson. (e.g., see this piece on Washington Post's ombudsman falling for Fox/Breitbart's ridiculous "New Black Panther Party" non-scandal, non-story over the weekend and WaPo's embarrassing coverage of the Sherrod incident tonight --- even after the hoax has been exposed --- where they waited until the 15th graf(!) to note the video was deceptively edited!) Obviously, the Obama Administration hasn't learned its lesson at all, as witnessed by the firing of Shirley Sherrod without any due diligence.

But it's nice to see that, this time, it took many in the media just 24 hours or so before catching on to Breitbart's hoax...

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




UPDATE: Suspect was planning to attack ACLU
By Brad Friedman on 7/19/2010 1:23pm PT  

From San Francisco Chronicle...

A 45-year-old parolee, described by his mother as angry at left-wing politicians, opened fire on California Highway Patrol officers on an Oakland freeway early Sunday and was hit by return fire while wearing body armor, authorities said.

Byron Williams of Groveland (Tuolumne County) was taken to the emergency room at Highland Hospital, where he was in stable condition.
...
Williams watched the news on television and was upset by "the way Congress was railroading through all these left-wing agenda items," his mother said.

Golly, I wonder what channel Williams watched for his "news on television".

* * *

[We'll take this opportunity, again, to ask you to sign on to VR's StopDomesticTerror.com campaign if you haven't already. Disclosure: The BRAD BLOG is a co-founder of VR.]

* * *

UPDATE 7/20/10: A few more details now from AP:

Police say a California man arrested after a freeway shootout with authorities was planning to attack people at the American Civil Liberties Union and another nonprofit group.

Oakland police Officer Jeff Thomason says Byron Williams was upset with the ACLU and Tides Foundation for their political views.
...
He was arraigned Tuesday on four counts of attempted murder, plus weapons enhancements. He was released from the hospital earlier in the day after being treated for injuries from the shootout.




By Brad Friedman on 7/19/2010 12:23pm PT  

If you didn't already know that the latest Fox "News" fake "outrage" about the jackass from the New Black Panther Party who was caught on video standing outside a Philadelphia polling place with a nightstick in 2008 was another predictably trumped-up Rightwing scam story, Jamison Foser will help you understand why that is.

But as with the phony ACORN "Pimp" Hoax, the most unsettling part of this latest scam is not just that Fox is promoting a phony story, round-the-clock, to rile up and scare their gullible viewers. That's what they do. We all know that by now. Or should. What's disturbing is that so-called Ombudsmen at major, theoretically non-wingnut "liberal media" outlets have yet to figure any of that out.

This time around, it's Washington Post's Ombudsman Andrew Alexander who takes the bait --- hook, line, nightstick, and phony whistleblower --- in support of his paper's coverage of what they shamefully headlined as a "political bombshell." Hoax Accomplished. Again.

Media Matters' Simon Maloy predicted this story would play out in exactly this way back on July 2nd [emphasis ours]:

1. Right-wingers shout loudly about bogus story.
2. Fox News picks up bogus story, reports on it incessantly.
3. Right-wingers and Fox News start complaining that "liberal media" are ignoring bogus story.
4. Other outlets are shamed into covering bogus story, mini-frenzy ensues.
5. Pundits credit Fox News for "being ahead of the curve."
6. Responsible media outlets determine bogus story is bogus long after damage is done.
7. Repeat.

See Foser for details, so we can go back to (hopefully) ignoring this ridiculous non-story.




By Brad Friedman on 7/13/2010 5:02pm PT  

Yesterday The BRAD BLOG covered the invasion of privacy lawsuit filed by former San Diego ACORN worker Juan Carlos Vera against Rightwing activists and dirty tricksters James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles after they'd video-taped him secretly, in violation of California law.

Last night, Rachel Maddow on MSNBC covered it, rather amusingly (and accurately), this way...





Complaint leaves room for their employer/pimp, Andrew Breitbart to be added as defendant in the future...
By Brad Friedman on 7/12/2010 12:42am PT  

Rightwing dirty-trickster and convicted federal criminal James O'Keefe and his accomplice Hannah Giles are being sued for invasion of privacy by a San Diego ACORN worker.

Juan Carlos Vera was fired by the 4-decade old anti-poverty, pro-democracy community organization after deceptively edited and secretly recorded video tapes of a meeting Vera had with O'Keefe and Giles were released by the pair and published on Republican propagandist Andrew Breitbart's websites. The tapes were then widely aired on Fox "News", as well as non-Rightwing media outlets.

Vera is suing for at least $75,000 in accordance with California's Invasion of Privacy Act which, according to the short, four-page complaint [PDF] filed at week's end in U.S. District Court, "prohibits the recording of confidential communications without the consent of all participants where there is an objectively reasonable expectation that the conversation is not being overheard or recorded."

In April of this year, CA Attorney General Jerry Brown completed a five-month probe into O'Keefe/Giles/Breitbart's secretly-taped ACORN videos and found "no criminality" by any of the ACORN workers seen on what he described as "severely edited" tapes.

He did, however, find that O'Keefe and Giles themselves were likely to have violated California law, and could see private litigation brought against them...

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




By Brad Friedman on 7/5/2010 1:32pm PT  

It's slightly inside baseball, but the laugh should be worth the quick trip here. So, in short, if you're not familiar with the backstory: Conservative Libertarian-ish journalist/blogger Dave Weigel was recently forced to resign from his new job at the Washington Post covering the "conservative" movement, after rightwingers released stolen, off-the-record emails from a private listserv called "JournoList", set up many years ago by Washington Post journalist/blogger Ezra Klein for random discussion and kibutzing between center to center-left progressive and liberal journalists. The selectively quoted Weigel emails included some snarky (if pretty funny) comments about some of the wingnuts he is forced to cover on his beat.

In the ensuing brouhaha, and shameful response by WaPo, Klein decided to shut down JournoList entirely and delete its archives so they couldn't be further used to selectively "ACORN" other members of the list. (For the record, no, we've never been a member of that email list.)

Thereafter, Rightwing sleaze-monger, Republican operative, opportunist and conspiracy theorist Andrew Breitbart offered $100,000 to anyone who anonymously gave him the entire JournoList archives.

So far, there have been no takers, but it looks like Breitbart may now owe our friend Skippy the Bush Kangaroo at least part of that $100k! Check out Skippy at what may perhaps be his absolute --- and most high-larious --- best...

* * *

While Skippy does a fine job of making Breitbart look like a jackass in the highly recommended link above, in truth Breitbart doesn't need much help. If you missed it the first time, don't miss this exclusive video interview with Breitbart that we ran a few months ago, during the height of exposing his ACORN "Pimp" Hoax scam. The video is reposted below for your convenience...

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




Faked chart used to deceive viewers on U.S. unemployment data...
By Brad Friedman on 7/1/2010 4:10pm PT  

Fox "News" Channel has been using this grossly distorted, incorrectly named and deceptively skewed chart on a number of its "news" shows of late...

But the chart is entirely, utterly, and reprehensibly misleading, as well as, yes, flat out wrong. In truth, here is an actual chart of U.S. job losses (and gains) since December of 2007:

But that's not all that's wrong with the chart at the top that the liars at Fox are using to deceive the chumps who watch (and believe in) the garbage they're being given under the knowingly false name of "News". Not by a long shot.

See Media Matters' for more eye-popping, visual, demonstrable, independently verifiable facts about this latest of utter lies from the shameless America-haters at Fox "News".




100% unverifiable e-voting 'not the droid you're looking for'...
By Brad Friedman on 6/28/2010 3:35pm PT  

Near the end of an article today on an investigation now underway by South Carolina officials into how the unknown, unemployed Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Alvin Greene was able to afford the state's $10,440 filing fee to get on the ballot in the first place, the Associated Press quickly summarizes the "multiple theories" forwarded to speculate on how it was that Greene could have garnered a 59 to 41% "victory" over former state legislator and Circuit Judge Vic Rawl in the recent Democratic U.S. primary:

Multiple theories have surfaced about Greene's success. Some had speculated that Greene, who is black, benefited from black voters looking for a black candidate and opting for his name because of the spelling of his name, with an "e" on the end. And the leader of the state Democratic Party has speculated voters picked the first name on the ballot.

Earlier this month, the state Democratic Party's executive committee upheld Greene's victory, nixing a protest lodged by Rawl that could have required a new vote.

I guess there were just no other possible "theories" for Greene's still inexplicable "victory". Nothing that AP could come up with --- nothing at all to inform readers about --- despite the recent, official, formal five-hour hearing, filled with evidence and actual experts, at that "protest lodged by Rawl."

So, it must have been the "e" at the end of Greene's name that made more than 100,000 South Carolinians vote for a man who never campaigned and who they never heard of. Yeah, that must have been it.

In related news, I've officially changed my name to Brad Friedmane and am hereby announcing my candidacy for President of the United States in 2012. I hope this notice serves to get me elected, as it's the only campaigning I will be doing between now and then. Should be more than enough though. Measuring the Oval Office for drapes even as we speak.




By Brad Friedman on 6/24/2010 1:59pm PT  

Good for him. Now, at some point, he needs to hold his own "news" channel accountable for all the damage they've done as well...


Eric Boehlert at Media Matters has some related thoughts on whether the BP disaster will turn out to be Fox's "tipping point".




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