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Latest Featured Reports | Thursday, December 25, 2014
The 'Very Special BradCast Holiday Special' Returns
Join The 'BradCast' Radio Theatre Players for some of our favorite episodes from the 1930s & 40s in what is now, officially, a beloved annual holiday tradition for two years running!...
'Green News Report' 12/23/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
2014 on track for hottest year on record; Washington governor proposes carbon cap & trade; Plastic in oceans worse than previously known; PLUS: Solar energy breakthrough...
Previous GNRs: 12/18/14 - 12/16/14 - Archives...
'A Terrible Idea': E-Voting, E-Counting, 'Open Source' and Internet Voting
Computerphile's Tom Scott understands and explains what too many -- even most opponents of 'e-voting' -- don't fully appreciate...
'Green News Report' 12/18/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Nothin' but good news for a change! - NY bans fracking!; Obama protects AK's Bristol Bay!; PLUS: More indictments for 'Freedom Industries' in WV toxic chemical spill!...
Previous GNRs: 12/16/14 - 12/11/14 - Archives...
Brad on Hartmann Radio: Wrapping Up a Few More Election 2014 Races
Yes, some of us are still paying attention.
Plus: A BRAD BLOG 'Programming Note'...
'Green News Report' 12/16/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Congress wraps for year w/ GOP anti-enviro initiatives to be signed by Prez; UN summit wraps up in Peru - ALL nations are in for Paris; PLUS: Another Bush, another climate denier...
Previous GNRs: 12/11/14 - 12/9/14 - Archives...
Bloomberg Editors Refuse to Correct Inaccurate, Misleading Photo ID Editorial
Read the 'mind-boggling' responses to BRAD BLOG's emailed explanation of blatant errors and inaccuracies in Francis Barry's op-ed...
Proponents of Oregon GMO Measure 92 Concede Defeat
Adverse court ruling, barring inclusion of 4,600 rejected ballots, signals end of road (for now) of state's most expensive campaign, decided by just 800 votes out of 1.5 million cast...
'Green News Report' 12/11/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
GOP anti-enviro wish list in "Cromnibus" bill; Crunch time at UN climate talks; Calls for an end to fossil fuels; Australia goaded into action; PLUS: CEO indicted for WV chemical spill...
Previous GNRs: 12/9/14 - 12/4/14 - Archives...
The Clint Curtis Story, Ten Years Later: A KPFK 'BradCast' Special Edition
It's been 10 years since we broke the whistleblower's claim about vote-rigging software, Rep. Tom Feeney (R) and more. So it seemed a good time to catch up with him...
SOLVED: Mystery that Flipped Maine Senate Election!
21 'phantom ballots' flipped the results of a Nov. 4th state Senate election from D to R. But a dramatic turn of events and hand-counted paper ballots have now resolved the mystery...
'Green News Report' 12/9/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Super Typhoon Hagupit blows 2014 into record books; Doesn't look good for KXL, if Obama on Colbert Report can be believed; PLUS: Rich v. Poor divisions stall UN climate talks...
Previous GNRs: 12/4/14 - 12/2/14 - Archives...
Bad News for Fox 'News' Viewers: 'Fox & Friends' Calls for Voter Literacy Tests
If they had to pass a test on American history and government, Fox 'News' viewers, as studies show, would be in big, big trouble...
Thousands of Ballots Excluded from Oregon's GMO Ballot Measure 'Recount'
Proponents charge interference by out-of-state corporate opponents, state's failure to count legal ballots due to 'signature problems'...
NC Repubs Trying to Run-Out Clock on Voter Suppression Lawsuit (Again)?
Plaintiffs charge state attempt to reschedule next summer's federal trial 'unsupportable', 'disingenuous'...
'Green News Report' 12/4/14
Biggest German utility spins off fossil fuel assets; Fossil fuel biz running scared? FL punishes homeowners for not polluting; PLUS: MSNBC's Big Coal infomercial...
House Judiciary Letter Suggests Impeachment for Wife-Beating Judge
Bi-partisan congressmen seek update from 11th Circuit Court, cite potential impeachment of Judge Mark Fuller...
'Green News Report' 12/2/14
New UN summit underway; Record rain, drought in CA; Global cost of falling oil prices; PLUS: Legacy of world's worst industrial disaster, 30 years later...
'Recount', Concerns in AZ U.S. House Race
Razor-thin computer-reported margin, failed paper-ballot tabulators, untallied provisionals, terrible 'recount' rules leave Barber-McSally contest in AZ-2 unsettled...
'KPFK' BradCast: Maine Mystery, Ferguson Fury and Thanks for Something
'My thanks to all of you this Thanksgiving which, as a few callers reminded me, isn't nearly as terrible as it seems'...
Mysterious Ballots Flip Maine Senate Recount Result From Democratic to Republican
21 'phantom' ballots appear out of nowhere in tiny Maine town, reverse results of very close state contest...
'Recount' for Oregon's GMO Ballot Measure
Fewer than 900 votes separate 'Yes' from 'No' on 'Right to Know' Measure 92, out of more than 1.5 million paper ballots tallied by computers statewide in Nov. 4 election...
'Green News Report' 11/25/14
Cuomo blames meteorologists for his Buffalo storm fail; Canada protests another tar sands pipeline, lead's world in deforestation; PLUS: World Bank's dire warning...
No Indictment in Ferguson Shooting
A few thoughts on the St. Louis County Prosecutor's extraordinary spectacle and miscarriage of justice in the killing of Michael Brown...
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...


'Now Do You Understand?' Asks Larry Johnson...
By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 1:21pm PT  

Larry Johnson put the whole thing in perspective rather quickly and to the point yesterday when the body count in the VTech shooting was still at 22.

Even with the latest numbers of those murdered in Monday's shooting now at 33, it's dwarfed by Sunday's numbers in Iraq, where 65 lives were lost and 20 policemen were taken hostage.

And yet, that has been happening virtually every day for years now in Iraq, where jerks like Cheney and McCain and Bush continue to tell us that "things are getting better" and it's the media who are failing to report the "good news."

Take a look at the wall-to-wall media coverage ever since the 33 tragic fatalities on Monday in America, and imagine what would be going on here if a VTech-sized tragedy or two or three happened every single day in this country for years on end. Imagine if it happened just two or three days in a row! (Not to mention the population of Iraq is less than 10% the size of the United States.)

Would we blame the media for not reporting the "good news" each day? Or would we demand that something be done --- now --- to stop the carnage?

As usual, Johnson's take, documented with AP's reports on killings in Iraq on Sunday, is worth reading and noting.

In a follow-up today, Johnson notes the failures of the cable news channels, in their continuous, wall-to-wall coverage, to point out the following:

  • "Bush is going to attend services for the victims of the Virginia Tech shooting today. When was the last time Bush did that for the troops? Oh, right, never!," writes Leslie below.
  • Bush has ordered the nation's flags flown at half-staff until Sunday. Did Bush order flags lowered after Katrina's devastation and the deaths of hundreds of people?
  • It was astonishing to watch news reporters rabidly attack Virginia Tech's president and chief of police. Why don't news reporters regularly attack Bush and Cheney like that?

Lest we be criticized for not taking the VTech shootings seriously, make no mistake, they are an indescribable tragedy. But so are the number of human beings killed every single day in Iraq, day after day after nightmarish day, since the United States needlessly invaded their country.

And yet, the number one story reported by the media last week was Don Imus, followed by Anna Nicole, followed by the number one under-reported story: the death of our national conscience...

UPDATE 9:21pm PT: 85 killed or found dead in Iraq on Tuesday...
UPDATE 4/18/07: 233 killed of found dead in Iraq on Wednesday...

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Equates GOP 'Voter Fraud' Scam with Watergate...
By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 9:05am PT  

Marjorie Cohn, president of the National Lawyers Guild and a professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, equates the GOP/Bush "Voter Fraud" scam/coverup at the heart of the U.S. Attorney Purge scandal with Watergate. Writing at AlterNet she concludes...

Firing Gonzales may temporarily stanch the flood of accusations about the U.S. attorney matter. But the corruption, the lawbreaking, and the cover-up go deeper --- all the way up to the Oval Office. Hopefully, Nancy Pelosi and John Conyers will put impeachment back on the table.
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By Brad Friedman on 4/16/2007 12:15pm PT  

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

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Bush Appointee Admits 'Mistake', White House Has 'Full Confidence', Despite First Ever Call for Resignation of a World Bank President
Staffer Received Pay Increase Double Amount Allowable by Rules...
By Brad Friedman on 4/12/2007 7:16pm PT  

Blogged by Brad on the road...

Jesus...does this nightmare ever end?!...

April 12 (Bloomberg) --- World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz apologized for his role in the promotion of a woman with whom he was romantically involved as the international finance agency's employees demanded he quit.

Wolfowitz told a press conference in Washington today that he's prepared to accept whatever "remedies" the bank's board proposes. He later addressed the group's Staff Association in the atrium of the bank's headquarters, where colleagues shouted "resign, resign."
...
"I made a mistake, for which I am sorry," he said at the press conference. He also acknowledged the need to reorganize his personal office, where aides have been criticized for a lack of expertise in development aid and for ties to the Republican Party.

The Staff Association, which represents about 13,000 World Bank employees, hasn't called for the resignation of a president before, according to Alison Cave, who heads the group.
...
The Bush administration, which nominated Wolfowitz for the job, has "full confidence" in the World Bank president, said Deputy White House Press Secretary Tony Fratto.
...
Riza's promotion came with a pay increase that was more than double the amount allowed by staff rules, according to Cave. She later received an annual increase of 7.5 percent, also larger than rules allow.

(Hat-tip BRAD BLOG commenter "Ancient")

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By Brad Friedman on 4/10/2007 4:49pm PT  

Daniel Bice of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is doing some good digging into the Milwaukee connection to the phony "voter fraud" claims used to help push U.S. Attorneys out of their job in the Bush Administration's political purge/disassembly of the now-ironically named Department of Justice.

As well, a recent, and unusual, overturned case in Wisconsin's Seventh Court of Appeals is similarly adding fresh fuel to the insidious GOP "voter fraud" scam at the heart of the outrageous abuse of power by the current Executive Branch. And today, Senators on the hill are asking new questions about it to Alberto Gonzales.

We've covered various elements of the invidious and baseless GOP "voter fraud" scheme in New Mexico (see here, here, here and here, for just a few examples) and touched on Washington State as well. But Bice jumps in with new details on the same scam in Milwaukee, which has now led to an official Congressional letter of inquiry on the matter sent today to Gonzales from Senators Leahy, Schumer, Kohl, Feingold, Feinstein, and Whitehouse.

As Bice reported yesterday...

The mystery is solved.

For weeks, it was unclear who whined to the White House last year that not enough voter fraud cases were being prosecuted in Milwaukee.

Now we know.

The state Republican Party went straight to the top in its efforts to make voter fraud an issue in Wisconsin.

Sources tell No Quarter that Rick Wiley, then the executive director of the state GOP, directed a staffer in 2005 to prepare a 30-page report on election abuses in Wisconsin so Wiley could pass it along to a top White House official.

That document, entitled "Fraud in Wisconsin 2004: A Timeline/Summary," turned up last week in the horde of White House and U.S. Justice Department records released by the House Judiciary Committee, which is investigating the firing of eight U.S. attorneys
...
In late 2005, U.S. Attorney Steve Biskupic, a Bush appointee, announced that his probe found no evidence of a conspiracy to steal the 2004 election here.

Was Wiley - or his boss at the time, then-Chairman Rick Graber - hoping the Bush team would ax Biskupic, as it did the other top federal prosecutors last year? .

Read on for more and see the letter from Leahy for more details on the heels of a surprise Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals decision that issued an order immediately overturning a case brought by Biskupic against Georgia Thompson, an aide to Wisconsin's Democratic governor, Jim Doyle. Just in time for the '06 election we might add. (It didn't help; Doyle won anyway.)

The basis for the unusual appellate court decision was that the evidence used to convict Thompson on charges related to voting irregularities was virtually non-existent --- leading the senators to question what sort of pressure was brought on Biskupic to bring the charges in the first place.

This is your government. On steroids. In the form of the Bush Administration Gone Wild. And it's got to not only be stopped, it needs to be: Pushed. Back. Down.

If serious accountability is not brought (and we mean more than simply pushing out a pawn like Gonzales) the bar will have been forever lowered as far as what sort of outrageous, un-American Executive Branch overreach is tolerable in this country.

I hope to hell that somewhere in the bowels of Congress someone is preparing Articles of Impeachment.

(Hat-tip to BRAD BLOG Commenter "Dredd" for the Leahy letter.)

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Letter from Armed Services Committee Chair Skelton Sent Today to DefSec Gates...
By Brad Friedman on 4/10/2007 2:40pm PT  

Following up Arlen Parsa's BRAD BLOG article from yesterday detailing how the size of Bush's troop surge continues to balloon --- in both troop and budget size --- above and beyond what American's were told originally, today Rep. Ike Skelton (D-MO), the House Armed Service Committee chairman, sends a letter to DefSec Gates asking "Where does this end?" on the heels of yesterday's news that yet another 17,000 troops will be added to the "surged" forces.

RAW STORY has the full letter...

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Who Could Have Possibly Foreseen It?...
[LATE UPDATE] Pentagon Announces Today Another 15,000 Deployed Troops to be Extended to Maintain 'Surge'
By Arlen Parsa on 4/9/2007 5:34am PT  

Guest Blogged by Arlen Parsa

When George W. Bush announced he would execute a "troop surge" to send more American soldiers to Iraq and Afghanistan in January 2007, it was billed as an increase of slightly over 20,000 soldiers that would cost less than six billion dollars.

"America will change our strategy to help the Iraqis carry out their campaign to put down sectarian violence and bring security to the people of Baghdad," Bush announced in a prime-time televised address. "This will require increasing American force levels. So I've committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq."

The "surge," recognized as an escalation by many, was immediately controversial for several reasons --- not the least of which was a concern that the increase of 20,000 American soldiers might turn into a much larger US presence in Iraq, and a much more expensive one, than promised.

Three months after Bush's announcement, those fears have come to fruition.

Let's take a look at the numbers, in both troops and dollars...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/8/2007 12:46pm PT  


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Three Years Late, Long After the Flawed Senate Intelligence Committee Report, WaPo Finally Fills in a Very Few Blanks on Bush's Infamous '16 Words' Which Led to War
PLUS: A Quick Follow-up on Last Week's 'Bush Admin/WaPo Swift-Boating of Fitzgerald' Story...
By Margie Burns on 4/5/2007 1:32pm PT  

*** Blogged by BRAD BLOG D.C. Correspondent Margie Burns

On Tuesday, April 3, 2007 the Washington Post finally got around to publishing a front-page article, “How Bogus Letter Became a Case for War,” on the bogus Niger/uranium/Iraq story underlying those infamous “16 words” in Bush’s 2003 State of the Union speech.

The Post subtitle is “Intelligence Failures Surrounded Inquiry on Iraq-Niger Uranium Claim.” A more accurate subtitle would have read, “Intelligence Community Caved to Bush-Cheney Pressure.”

{Ed Note: We might suggest "Mainstream Media Failure to do Job, Scrutinize Admin's Iraq-Niger Claim, Led to Endless War" - BF}

I, among others, am familiar with the chronology because I wrote about it almost a full three years ago...

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

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New Charges Announced Against Chair of BoE Who Refused to Resign: He Allegedly Ordered $15k PR Contract Awarded to 'GOP Spokesperson'
By Brad Friedman on 4/3/2007 9:36pm PT  

Ohio's Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner cleaned out the last dead-ender from the Cuyahoga County (Cleveland) Board of Elections today. That would be the chairperson of the BoE and the head of Ohio's Republican Party, Bob Bennett (see previous coverage here.)

Bennett was the last of the four directors of the Board of Elections (supposedly two Democrats and two Republicans) to leave the board of the state's most Democratic-leaning county. The other three resigned after requested by Brunner in the wake of the convictions of two Cuyahoga Elections Officials for rigging the 2004 Presidential Election recount, a raft of disastrously run elections and a new criminal investigation into malfeasance at the county election board. The new investigation includes the early printing of absentee ballot results and an unexplained network cable left attached to the central tabulator overnight.

According to a statement posted to the SoS website, Brunner notified Bennett today about his suspension in writing, and has also announced yet another new charge against him:

"The Secretary of State's office will be working with the current and emerging leadership of the board to develop a plan improving, with the assistance of the Secretary of State's office, the board's operations and service to the citizens of Cuyahoga County. To further these efforts, I believe it to be in the best interests of all involved to suspend your participation as a member of the board," said Brunner. The notice of suspension pointed to the reasons addressed in the complaint filed against the Cuyahoga Board of Elections members by Brunner on March 23, 2007.

Brunner cites an additional reason for the suspension involving instructions to former Executive Director Michael Vu to award a contract to a consultant without Board approval.

Bennett instructed Vu to award a second contract to David Hopcraft in the amount of $14,750 on or about February 26, 2007, for public relations services to be paid for by public dollars by the board of elections. The Dayton Daily News on March 26, 2007 reported Mr. Hopcraft to be a "GOP spokesperson."

Accountability to continue in Ohio...

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Yours Truly Quoted by Name for First Time by Former Newsman Hume...for Comments Against Democratic Presidential Hopeful, Of Course...
By Brad Friedman on 4/3/2007 5:35am PT  

Since Brit Hume of Fox "News" has never quoted us (rather, me, Brad Friedman) by name as far as I know, I thought it would be worth elevating the following update from our piece over the weekend which was critical of Obama, to note the once-credible Hume having done so today, in order to smash up a Democrat, of course. Oh, the irony never stops.

The original BRAD BLOG article from which Hume quotes us (me) was critical of Obama for reportedly telling AP over the weekend that Senate Dems would cave by sending an Iraq spending bill to the White House without troop withdrawal timelines, if Bush vetoes the current one as promised.

Hume failed to mention, of course, that we also noted the dubious provenance of the report: The Associated Press. Neither did he mention the ensuing updates and discussions about whether AP had the story right or not. Though, in fact, Obama has not gone out of his way to correct the record, or call out AP for being inaccurate, save for this middling response in the Union Leader today. Markos at DailyKos --- who is infamously singled out along with us (happy to tarnish his reputation) in Hume's piece --- has thoughts on Obama's response with which we will also associate ourselves in a rare meeting of minds.


So for infamy's sake, the video of former newsman Hume using us to slime Obama ("Liberal Bloggers Turn on Barack Obama") is at left. We'll presume he means "turns back on" versus the sexual connotation. Either way, we're happy to serve. Video courtesy of the indispensable NewsHounds.us and the indefatigable Alan Breslauer.

Please note: Unlike the Fox "News" website print version of Hume's "Political Grapevine" (see the update from the original article below), Hume referred to us as "popular" in the video version. We shall add it to our CV right away...

UPDATE 3/2/07 7:25pm PT: Looks like Republican propagandist Brit Hume of the Republican propaganda outlet Fox "News" quoted our report here tonight for the "Political Grapevine" section of their anti-Democratic propaganda "news" show Special Report with Brit Hume. Needless to say, he didn't bother to include the questions we've raised about the AP report. Here's their propagandistic website's version of the report (which doesn't bother to link to us, natch) and is naturally headlined: "Liberal Bloggers Turn on Barack Obama":

Liberal Bloggers Turn on Barack Obama

Monday, April 02, 2007
By Brit Hume
FOX NEWS

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Bloggers Furious

Left-wing bloggers, who are a potent force in the Democratic party, are furious with Barack Obama for saying over the weekend that Congress will vote to fund the troops without a timeline for withdrawal if President Bush vetoes the current version of the bill. Obama said that no lawmaker, "wants to play chicken with our troops."

Markos Moulitsas of the influential Daily Kos Web log writes: "What a ridiculous thing to say. Not only is it bad policy, not only is it bad politics, it's also a terrible negotiating approach. Instead of threatening Bush with even more restrictions and daring him to veto funding for the troops out of pique, Barack just surrendered to him."

And Brad Friedman of The Brad Blog says: "If we ever need to negotiate for anything, remind us to not call on Obama to represent us."

Setting aside whether we're "Liberal" or "Left-wing" as Fox "News" would like to have it, can one "turn their back" on someone that they never actually turned their front to in the first place? Just curious.

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In Attempted Ambush Interview, Twisted 'News Man' Spins Her Comments into Accusations of 'Hating Her Country,' 'Blaming America' for Iran/UK Soldier Capture, Cuts Off Her Mic...
Why is This Guy Still on Television?
By Brad Friedman on 4/2/2007 9:35pm PT  

In one of his most shamefully transparent swiftboat attacks yet, Bill O'Reilly twisted and perverted the comments of 29-year U.S. Army Colonel Ann Wright last Friday, for having the temerity to explain that when Americans parade their own prisoners of war before the cameras, it's difficult to have the "moral high ground" in making the case that Iran has violated the Geneva Convention by doing similarly with their captured British troops.

For the record, Wright spent years educating troops on the Geneva Convention at Fort Bragg and understands it cold (unlikely, O'Reilly). She also spent 16 years in the diplomatic corps before resigning in protest as the Iraq War began. I interviewed her on the illegalities of the war while at Camp Casey in Crawford, TX, in August of 2005. Her explanation was exceedingly enlightening. (MP3 here, appx. 22 mins, as part of the collection of highlights from our 50+ hours of special BRAD SHOW "Operation Noble Cause" live broadcasts.)

Crooks & Liars' coverage of the interview, includes a transcript from the wrap-up of the attempted O'Reilly hit piece (in which he only seems to have hit himself):

WRIGHT: "I want to make sure the United States treats people properly.."

O'REILLY: "Sure you do. Sure you do."

WRIGHT: "I surely do. That's what I spent 29 years of my life trying to do."

O'REILLY: "Sorry. No you didn't. You know what happened to you…somewhere along the line you started to dislike your own country…."

WRIGHT: "I served 29 years. How many did you serve? Where did you teach the Geneva Conventions?"

O'REILLY: "Cut her mic."

Watch the video. It's absolutely shameful.

(Hat-tip for the video to Chrish at the indispensable NewsHounds.us for "watching FOX so [we] don't have to.")

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Vic Gold, Who Wrote Bios for Bush & Cheney Inaugural Program, Joins Mad Rush to Disassociate from 'NeoCons Who Destroyed the GOP'
Says Bush 'Dan Quayle in Cowboy Boots,' Cheney 'Out of Control'...
By Brad Friedman on 4/2/2007 3:30pm PT  

The deafening noise of scampering rats from the sinking ship continues.Following on the heels of Bush-Cheney's chief '04 campaign strategist, Matthew Dowd, over the weekend, GOP insider and Bush/Cheney family friend, Vic Gold, unloads on the two to WaPo in advance of his new book, Invasion of the Party Snatchers: How the Holy-Rollers and the Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP.

Gold, who was asked by Lynn Cheney to write the profiles of both Bush and Cheney and their wives for the official commemorative 2000 Inauguration program tells WaPo today:

"For all the Rove-built facade of his being a 'strong' chief executive, George W. Bush has been, by comparison to even hapless Jimmy Carter, the weakest, most out of touch president in modern times," Gold writes. "Think Dan Quayle in cowboy boots."

And on Cheney...

"A vice president in control is bad enough. Worse yet is a vice president out of control."
...
"Men do not change, they unmask themselves." Cheney has a deep streak of paranoia and megalomania, Gold suggests --- but he says he did not see it at first.

"He was hiding who he really was," Gold says. "He was waiting for an opportunity."

The above point is particularly interesting in light of what Gold wrote about Cheney for the commemorative Inaugural program:

"A man of gravitas with a quick and easy wit; a conservative who'll see a road less traveled; a political realist who sees his country and the world around him not in terms of leaden problems but golden opportunities."

Indeed.

The parade of similar such defections, we suspect, will continue --- exponentially --- apace...

(Hat-tip to John Cole at Balloon Juice.)

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Followed By Lying Politicians...
By Alan Breslauer on 4/2/2007 11:34am PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

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Negotiation Skills Not Strong Point for the Illinois Senator, Presidential Hopeful...
[UPDATE] Questions Arise Surrounding AP's Reporting of Obama's True Position [UPDATED AGAIN] Fox 'News'/Brit Hume Quote Us in order to Slime Obama....
By Brad Friedman on 4/1/2007 4:14pm PT  

Presidential candidate Barack Obama (D-IL) tells AP today that he believes Senate Democrats will vote to fund the Iraq War without withdrawal timelines if Bush vetoes the currently pending spending bills as he's promised to do.

Presuming he's been accurately quoted by AP (not necessarily always a safe bet), this means Obama was willing to show his hand and, essentially, give permission to Bush to go ahead and veto the bill without consequences. Brilliantly done.

If we ever need to negotiate for anything, remind us to not call on Obama to represent us.

"I think that it's important for voters to get a sense of how the next president will make decisions in a foreign policy arena," he told AP.

Great. We've just gotten that "sense," and if that's your plan, then thanks but no thanks.

For all of George W. Bush's indescribable incompetence, at least he understands that you don't show your hand to those you are negotiating with. Thus, his "all options are on the table" rhetoric, when dealing with foreign powers like Iraq, Iran, etc., in our opinion, is actually quite appropriate. Terrifying, in the hands of a dangerous, bumbling dope like Bush, but quite appropriate for international negotiations in a general sense.

We're sorry to see that Obama doesn't seem to get that.

And one other disturbing quote from the AP article...

"If the president vetoes this, the American people have to continue to put pressure on their representatives so that at some point we may be able to get a veto-proof majority for moving this war in a different direction," the senator said.

Uh, wrong, Senator. Yes, the American people must continue to do their part in pressuring their Congressional reps, but you need to do your part and lead them, as you were elected to do. Your comments --- as reported today by AP, in any case --- don't offer much confidence that you yet understand the necessities, nuances, or negotiation skills required to either pull off the job of President, or even lead Americans as a sitting Senator during a time of war as waged by a madman.

We hope you'll figure this out --- and quickly --- before undermining your supporters and your caucus again in the future.

UPDATE 11:13pm PT: In comments here, "Truth" posts a CNN interview with Wolf Blitzer as proof that Obama never said what AP has charged him with saying. As mentioned above, I wouldn't put anything past AP these days. That said, it seems that was not the interview AP was quoting from with Obama. Over at dKos, Markos was similarly outraged about Obama's comments this morning, apparently, saying that "Obama just surrendered to Bush" and excoriating his negotiation skills as we did. Kos has now followed up the original post with another pointing out that there are two different interviews in question. One with CNN and one with AP. I'll refer you to Kos's newer post, for now, on the difference between the two and the Obama campaign's apparent lack of effort to correct the AP story if, in fact, it was wrong.

UPDATE 3/2/07 7:25pm PT: Looks like Republican propagandist Brit Hume of the Republican propaganda outlet, Fox "News", quoted our report here tonight for the "Political Grapevine" section of their anti-Democratic propaganda "news" show Special Report with Brit Hume. Needless to say, he didn't bother to include the questions we've raised about the AP report. Here's their propagandistic website's version of the report (which doesn't bother to link to us, natch) and is naturally headlined: "Liberal Bloggers Turn on Barack Obama":

Liberal Bloggers Turn on Barack Obama

Monday, April 02, 2007
By Brit Hume
FOX NEWS

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Bloggers Furious

Left-wing bloggers, who are a potent force in the Democratic party, are furious with Barack Obama for saying over the weekend that Congress will vote to fund the troops without a timeline for withdrawal if President Bush vetoes the current version of the bill. Obama said that no lawmaker, "wants to play chicken with our troops."

Markos Moulitsas of the influential Daily Kos Web log writes: "What a ridiculous thing to say. Not only is it bad policy, not only is it bad politics, it's also a terrible negotiating approach. Instead of threatening Bush with even more restrictions and daring him to veto funding for the troops out of pique, Barack just surrendered to him."

And Brad Friedman of The Brad Blog says: "If we ever need to negotiate for anything, remind us to not call on Obama to represent us."

Setting aside whether we're "Liberal" or "Left-wing" as Fox "News" would like to have it, can one "turn their back" on someone that they never actually turned their front to in the first place? Just curious. (Video now posted here...).

ReddIt this story!



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