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'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!...
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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...
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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...
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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...
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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...
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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...


Republican election fraud epidemic continues...
By Brad Friedman on 2/15/2012 1:37pm PT  

The state GOP itself has stolen the state for Mitt Romney in Maine's 2012 Caucuses. Period.

Might Romney be the actual winner once all votes are actually cast and counted? Perhaps. But the fact is, the Maine Republican Party has purposely blocked that from happening and the apparent loser in all of this --- beside the voters of Maine --- is Congressman Ron Paul who, according to the official results reported by the state GOP last Saturday night, "lost" to Romney by just 194 votes.

Adding to the outrage, the election fraud was perpetrated by the Chairman of the state's Republican Party, Charlie Webster.

Readers of The BRAD BLOG may well remember Webster as the man who spent months attempting to wholesale disenfranchise thousands of legal student voters in the state of Maine, on the entirely fraudulent basis that they were committing "voter fraud" because they were out-of-state students who, living in Maine and going to school there most of the year, should be, nonetheless, barred from voting there.

Federal law clearly states otherwise, allowing such students to vote in Maine. And even the Sec. of State there, Republican Charles E. Summers, Jr., who investigated Webster's "evidence" for his case, found it to be entirely baseless. (Though that didn't keep Summers himself from sending threatening letters to many of those perfectly legal student voters, in apparent hopes of intimidating them into not casting their votes in The Pine Tree State.)

While Webster was pretending that massive voter fraud was occurring in Maine, he has now, himself committed a massive case of election fraud by announcing the winner of last week's Maine Caucuses as Mitt Romney despite his full knowledge that voters in at least three different counties have been entirely disenfranchised, with their votes not included in his "final" results. Many of those voters haven't even been allowed to cast their votes yet at all.

Last Saturday Night, the scheduled end of the week long state caucuses, Webster announced before live television cameras with much fanfare: "I'm now gonna announce the winner of the Maine GOP poll. And that winner is Mitt Romney."

But Webster was lying, and committing a massive act of knowing election fraud in the process as he made his announcement. His deceptive act was simply the latest in a grotesque and growing series of election fraud acts carried out this year by high-level GOP personalities and officials, including confirmed and alleged fraud by several of the party's Presidential contenders...

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

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But don't blame voters or hand-counted paper ballots...
By Brad Friedman on 2/6/2012 3:40pm PT  

Iowa's "First-in-the-Nation" Caucuses managed to publicly tally some 122,000 hand-marked paper ballots at 1,774 caucus sites within an hour or two after votes were cast, in such a way that any problems or typos in the state GOP's reporting of the results could be quickly verified by many different sources as inaccurate, thanks to the thousands who were able to oversee the hand-counting on caucus night.

This year Iowa had the tightest results in state history --- just 34 votes were ultimately reported as separating the first and second place candidates --- and yet almost nobody is shouting "fraud" or questioning the results in the Hawkeye State today after what was, in truth, a model of transparent democracy.

Contrast that with the embarrassing and disastrous mess that took place across the state of Nevada on Saturday --- and in the days that followed --- where just 33,000 hand-marked paper ballot votes were cast (down from 44,000 in 2008), but where GOP officials were unable to report even preliminary results to the public until 1am on Monday!

In the bargain, candidates and media and the public are questioning even those late late late results, while nowhere near as many votes were cast, and the results do not appear to be anywhere as close.

So what went wrong in Nevada this year that didn't go wrong in Iowa?...

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

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Controversy over replacement of state's chief election official kicks off; Epidemic of high-profile GOP voter fraud continues...
By Brad Friedman on 2/4/2012 1:17pm PT  

The chief election official in the very first state in the nation to implement polling place Photo ID restrictions --- under the guise of preventing "voter fraud" --- has been found guilty of three counts of felony voter fraud today.

In an early morning verdict following 12 hours of deliberation, a jury in Hamilton County found Indiana's Republican Secretary of State Charlie White guilty of three counts of voter fraud related to having voted in a precinct where he did not live and where he was illegally registered to vote. The Hoosier State's controversial first-in-the-nation Photo ID restrictions, originally implemented in 2008, did nothing to prevent either White's illegal registration or his unlawful vote for himself as Secretary of State in 2010 when he was elected to office.

Of the seven criminal felony counts White had been charged with in March of 2011, the jury also found him guilty of three other Class D felonies related to perjury and theft, while clearing him of one Class C felony for fraud on a financial institution.

White has vowed to appeal the decision in hopes of lowering the convictions to misdemeanor charges, rather than felonies.

Under Indiana law, a felony conviction makes White ineligible to serve in state office and would create a vacancy to be filled by Republican Governor Mitch Daniels. However, even if today's felony charges are upheld, the fight over who will replace White as Indiana's chief election official is likely to continue for some time, since a separate recent ruling against him in a related civil case could take precedence over today's verdict.

Republicans are hoping Daniels will be allowed to name White's replacement, even though a judge last December ordered White immediately removed from office and replaced by his Democratic opponent from the 2010 election, after determining that White had been illegally on the ballot in the first place thanks to his improper registration.

White's conviction is the latest in what is shaping up as spate of voter fraud convictions, allegations, and investigations of high profile GOP officials, including allegations against several of the party's 2012 Presidential candidates...

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

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PLUS: Meet Jack Abramoff, Muckraking Anti-Lobbying Blogger!
By Brad Friedman on 2/3/2012 1:26pm PT  

[Now UPDATED at bottom of article.]

Hilarious. For some odd reason, the latest super-secret Koch Brothers Winter Seminar for millionaires, billionaires and elected Republicans and judges, once again near Palm Springs this year, decided to up its already tight security big time. They were forced to buy out an entire resort (using an alias) for several days in Indian Wells, closing down its restaurants and golf courses to the public and sending home many of its workers for the duration. Not that any of that kept ace reporter Lee Fang from finding out about it and heading out there, as detailed in his new exclusive today:

The summit, organized by the billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, was cloaked in secrecy. Helicopters, private security, and police officers from neighboring cities patrolled the area constantly.
...
The Renaissance Esmerelda, the conference venue this year, was guarded carefully with every entrance blocked and the entire 560-room resort rented out. I arrived at the hotel the night before the event, but was followed closely by security and asked to leave the next morning before the Koch meeting guests arrived.
..
Though the donors will funnel tens of millions of dollars into the election this year, they will not have to disclose a single cent. Using an elaborate array of foundations, nonprofits, and other legal entities, the Koch network sponsored bus tours, attack ads, think tanks, and hired Tea Party organizers to shape the midterm elections two years ago. Now it appears they appear to be expanding their effort.

The most that the public knows about these meetings has been culled from leaked audio tapes, reporting from journalists like Ken Vogel, and from an invitation I exclusively reported back in October of 2010.
...
At the Palm Springs Airport last weekend, I eventually ran into Phil Kerpen, the vice president of Americans for Prosperity, the Tea Party group founded by David Koch. Kerpen, who was in a rush to make it to the event, didn’t say much about the agenda. Kerpen’s group recently purchased $6 million in undisclosed attack ads against President Obama, the largest such buy of the entire campaign cycle so far.

Kerpen asked how I knew about the conference. “I thought they had stopped all leaks,” he muttered, as I walked with him through the baggage claim.
...
“Ask your leaker to post my speech, because it’s very good,” he added, before getting in a car with two associates.

The added secrecy was apparent even to local reporters, who were confused about why the multi-golf course Esmerelda Renaissance was locked down and why the hotel staff couldn’t talk to anyone about what was going on.

Heheh...Sounds like that must have cost a lot of additional money! Sorry if we caused you any problems, Mr. and Mr. Koch! :-)

* * *

By the way, the exclusive by Fang --- formerly of ThinkProgress --- kicks off the new Republic Report blog ("Investigating how money corrupts democracy") with a bang today. The new muckraking project of the similarly new United Republic ("Democracy is not for sale") organization, includes the work of Fang, a number of other great and (mostly) progressive muckrakers and trouble makers, but also includes...wait for it...Jack Abramoff!

Yes, that Jack Abramoff --- the former, now-disgraced, previously-imprisoned, but now-finally-free and supposedly-reformed GOP uber-lobbyist! Steve Clemons at The Atlantic explains in his profile of the noteworthy new project today.

Fang's contributions (follow him on Twitter at @LHFang) alone would be reason enough to keep an eye on Republic Report. Everything else is more than enough icing on a tantalizing new cake to demand the site be bookmarked immediately...in our always humble opinion, of course.

* * *

UPDATE 3:50pm PT: Amanda Terkel and Ryan Grim at Huffington Post report a source inside the Koch's democracy-hating meeting near Palm Springs this year says the group "pledged approximately $100 million to defeat President Obama in the 2012 elections" during the course of the retreat, and offered another interesting thought as well...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 2/1/2012 12:27pm PT  

I joined Thom Hartmann on his Big Picture TV show last night to discuss The BRAD BLOG's exclusive report from earlier in the day confirming the Virginia State Attorney General's newly launched criminal investigation into the 1,500 allegedly fraudulent signatures turned in by the Gingrich Campaign in their failed attempt to be included on the VA GOP Primary ballot...

By the way, since we broke the news yesterday morning, several outlets have picked up and/or confirmed our report. Though, frankly, not as many as one would think given the nature and scope of the story. Certainly not as many who would have picked it up had either the now-defunct ACORN, or any Democrat been accused of doing the very same thing.

Other than our report, Tommy Christopher's coverage at Mediaite was probably the most detailed (and included both my name and a link to our story), followed by Dan Roem at National Journal (who credits the story to having "broke in the liberal blogosphere" --- though at least he included a link here...even though that link was broken when I last checked), then Julian Walker at The Virginia-Pilot (who didn't bother to credit anybody for the story) and NBC4-Washington who, in their short piece, did manage to mention and link properly to The BRAD BLOG.

There were a few other mentions (Dave Weigel at Slate, for example) but, far and away, the greatest way our stories are spread are by you guys and others spreading the word yourselves through comments at other sites, email, and via Twitter and Reddit. (The comments on the posting at Reddit --- where a huge number of folks up-voted the story --- were very, um, enlightening, as you'll see if you bother to read them.)

Of course, Fox "News", who mentions, actually highlights, every time an ACORN worker is accused of farting over the years (whether they actually farted or not) has yet to say a word about this story. Wonder why.

Just thought you might be interested in how folks sometimes deal --- or don't --- with original, exclusive stories that we break here. Sometimes they pick them up, sometimes they don't. Sometimes they offer appropriate credit, quite often they don't. That, despite the hundreds of stories we've broken over the years, with an impeccable record for accuracy and independent verifiability in just about every damned one of them.

* * *
Please support The BRAD BLOG's fiercely independent, award-winning coverage of your electoral system, as available from no other media outlet in the nation, with a donation to help us keep going (Snail mail, more options here). If you like, we'll send you some great, award-winning election integrity documentary films in return! Details right here...

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By Brad Friedman on 1/31/2012 5:35am PT  

Had the same thing been carried out by a worker for the now-defunct ACORN, Republicans --- and even Newt Gingrich --- would have called it massive "voter fraud." But the 1,500 acts of fraud, by Gingrich's own admission, were carried out by a worker hired by his campaign, so it seems the media have barely noticed it.

Nonetheless, The BRAD BLOG has received confirmation from two different state agencies that the 1,500 alleged cases of ballot petition fraud said to have been carried out on behalf of the Gingrich campaign, in their unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the Republican primary ballot in Virginia, are now being carried out by the state Attorney General's office.

In late December, after Gingrich had failed to turn in enough valid signatures to qualify for the Virginia primary ballot, he was caught on video tape telling a supporter in Iowa that the reason for the failure was due to a campaign worker who created 1,500 fraudulent signatures.

"We turned in 11,100 --- we needed 10,000 --- 1,500 of them were by one guy who, frankly, committed fraud," Gingrich is seen and heard saying in video originally aired by CNN.

The former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives downplayed the incident, by explaining to the woman that the entire affair was "just a mistake," after they had "hired somebody who turned in false signatures."

Neither he nor his campaign, however, has made the name of the alleged "one guy" public, to our knowledge, despite the extraordinary number of fraudulent signatures created and turned in by that "one guy" in what an official at the Virginia State Board of Elections (SBE) described to us as "definitely an illegal act."

News of the embarrassing criminal investigation is confirmed today, even as voters go to the polls for Florida's 2012 GOP Primary, where Gingrich is facing off against front-runner Mitt Romney who, ironically --- and uncomfortably enough for Republicans --- may also find himself the subject of a criminal voter fraud investigation in the not-too-distant future...

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

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State's chief election official demolishes claims by state AG...
By Brad Friedman on 1/30/2012 1:50pm PT  

To paraphrase Mark Twain's famous remark in 1897, reports of 953 "dead people" having voted in recent South Carolina elections appear to be greatly exaggerated. Who could have guessed it?

Following quickly on the heels of Rightwing hoaxster James O'Keefe's successful felonious conspiracy to commit voter fraud during the New Hampshire primary this year, by receiving ballots in the name of very recently deceased voters (resulting in a Republican call for his "arrest and prosecution" in the Granite State) and the U.S. Dept. of Justice's rejection of a new South Carolina law attempting to keep registered voters from voting at the polling place unless they are able to present a state-issued Photo ID, on the basis that the state's own evidence reveals the law to be both illegal and discriminatory, the SC Attorney General pushed back by claiming that a state DMV analysis had discovered some 953 votes had been cast by "dead people" in recent elections there.

Funny thing though. Upon closer examination, as is almost always the case in these matters, those 953 "dead voters" may not be so "dead" after all. That, according to SC State Election Commission (SEC) Executive Director Marci Andino who both testified [PDF] and released a statement on the matter last week.

According to both her statement and testimony to the SC House Election Laws Subcommittee, Andino, the state's chief election official, said:

While the SEC has not yet been provided with all the information on which the claims are being made, the Attorney General's office has provided a small sample - six names from Abbeville County. A review of the voter registration lists and signatures on the poll lists from the elections in question revealed that of these six:

  • One was an absentee ballot cast by a voter who then died before election day;
  • Another was the result of an error by a poll worker who mistakenly marked the voter as Samuel Ferguson, Jr. when the voter was in fact Samuel Ferguson, III;
  • Two were the result of stray marks on the voter registration list detected by the scanner - again, a clerical error;
  • The final two were the result of poll managers incorrectly marking the name of the voter in question instead of the voter listed either above or below on the list.

Zounds! Who could have guessed that Republican claims of hordes of zombies voting in South Carolina's elections --- as first publicized in a short, evidence-free AP article trumpeted at Fox "News" --- were, um, "greatly exaggerated"?!

And that's not the only specious claim by the AG's office that Andino dismantled during her testimony last week...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 1/29/2012 5:35pm PT  

As you know, "liberals" are doing little more than using their well-worn "Alinksy Tactics" to fight against freedom in order to bring communism to the United States of America. That said, the fact is, nobody other than Rightwing fantasists and their gullible stooges seem to know who the hell this Saul Alinsky guy actually is!

I know I had no clue about him until I finally looked him up after a dozen or so times of being accused of using his "tactics" by various wingnuts (usually Breitbart cultists or brainwashed, incurious Fox "News" zombies).

It seems Bill Maher had a similar reaction to mine, as seen on Friday night's Real Time on HBO. More to the point, Maher's observations about the Republican campaign against Obama, pretty much mirrored mine, as I discussed in my analysis of last week's State of the Union Speech and in other venues where I've spoken about this lately. Specifically, the charge that Republicans can't defeat the actual Barack Obama on the merits, for a whole bunch of reasons, so they've decided instead to run against a "completely fictional President".

"His name is Barack X and he's an Islamo-Socialist revolutionary who's coming for your guns, raising your taxes, slashing the military, apologizing to other countries and taking his cues from Europe --- or worse yet, Saul Alinksy!"

Maher went on to explain how Obama has done anything but the phony charges used against him, and then went on to compare those complaints with Democrats' complaints about Bush.

"Say what you will about the Left's hatred of Bush," said Maher, "at least we were hating on the real guy. We didn't invent a boogey-man who tanked the economy, took us to war on false pretenses and tortured prisoners. That was the actual guy!"

NOTE: This video seems to be getting removed from YouTube by HBO (clearly another Alinsky Tactic!), so you may wanna watch it quickly before this version is removed as well. It's well worth it. But, in case it's gone by the time you get to it, see below for the text from Maher's key rant near the end of the piece...

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

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By Ernest A. Canning on 1/29/2012 3:40pm PT  

Guest editorial by Ernest A. Canning

The title of historian Kevin Phillips' otherwise excellent work, Wealth and Democracy: A Political History of the American Rich, is somewhat misleading. With the exception of constitutional monarchies, which preclude royalty from all but figurehead status, democracy and the concentration of great wealth cannot co-exist in the same society.

If citizens can see past the corporate media-erected contest of personalities so as to examine how it reflects the undemocratic structure of our society, the 2012 Presidential election can provide us with a teachable moment of great value. This is true whether we examine the flood of SuperPAC monies, courtesy of the now infamous Citizens United decision, the striking similarities in their methodology of wealth acquisition depicted both in the 1987 movie Wall Street through its fictional Gordon Gekko and in real life by Bain Capital and Mitt Romney, the ridiculously low 13.9% federal taxes on Romney's $21.7 million income in 2010, his extensive Goldman Sachs holdings and as much as $32 million maintained in off-shore accounts, or the fact that only one, essentially marginalized Presidential candidate in either of the two major political parties --- Ron Paul --- is willing to discuss an end to perpetual war and our global military presence.

Here, Mitt "Gordon Gekko" Romney provides the principle focus, not because of personality, or "envy", but because his candidacy affords an opportunity to explore the inconsistency between wealth and democracy...

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

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Not first time Jon Husted has spoken out against his own party's radical, voter-suppression agenda...
By Brad Friedman on 1/27/2012 1:17pm PT  

Ohio's Republican Sec. of State Jon Husted has called on fellow Republicans in the legislature to repeal their controversial Election Reform bill, rather than see it face a voter referendum currently slated for this November's ballot.

The law, if it is not rejected by voters, will severely shorten the time for Early Voting and will ban it all together on the Sunday before Election Day in the Buckeye State, in a way that is geared towards suppressing Democratic votes. The bill also includes other major barriers to voting such as a prohibition on county Boards of Election mailing absentee ballot request forms to voters and a ban on poll workers instructing voters where their correct precinct is located. Opponents of the law have noted that some 200,000 voters in Columbus alone --- or 4 in 10 votes cast there in 2008 --- would have had to cast their vote in a different manner in 2012 has the law been allowed to take effect this year as planned.

Husted, the state's chief election official, elected in 2010, had worked with GOP legislators in crafting the bill which was passed and signed by Republican Gov. John Kasich last year, before being met with a wildly successful petition campaign in support of a "voter veto" of the bill. That campaign, led by progressive groups such as Fair Elections Ohio, garnered more than 300,000 signatures, or more than 75,000 above the total required to put the bill on hold and place it on the ballot for a popular vote. The result is that, last December, the bill was officially suspended for 2012, when Republicans had hoped it might help suppress Democratic-leaning voters in the swing-state's Presidential election. Instead, the law is now set to be on the November 2012 ballot for voter approval or rejection.

The Sec. of State called on fellow Republicans to overturn the bill in the legislature, scrap it, and revisit the issue after the 2012 election, rather than allowing it to remain on the ballot in November. Those remarks have raised the hackles of some powerful GOP lawmakers in Ohio.

Husted is developing a record for standing against some of the most radical elements of his own party's agenda in some cases, as seen, for example, in his outspoken condemnation of an attempt to institute polling place Photo ID restrictions on voters in the same bill last year, as well as a bi-partisan effort in 2007, with the previous Democratic Sec. of State, to do away with 100% unverifiable touch-screen voting systems in the Buckeye State...

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

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
'Green' State of the Union Edition!
By Desi Doyen on 1/26/2012 3:06pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
VIA SMART PHONE: Stitcher Radio!

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Drill-Baby-Drill and Frack-Baby-Frack: Obama talks energy in his State of the Union address --- featuring actual clean energy! --- while climate denier Republicans double down on dirty energy; PLUS: Speaking the forbidden words --- out loud! ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

Listen online here, or Download MP3 (6 mins)...

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Conoco profits jump 66%; 5 energy issues to watch for in tonight’s GOP debate in FL; WH pressured scientists to underestimate BP spill; State Dept: Don’t mess with us on Keystone; CO2 is “driving fish crazy”; NHTSA: 'Chevy Volt is safe'; Judge blocks health studies from mine permit; NASA animation charts modern global warming ... PLUS: Raiding the bread basket: use and abuse of the Mississippi River basin ... and much, MUCH more! ...

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By Brad Friedman on 1/24/2012 11:59pm PT  

I think the expression captured on the face of House Speaker John Boehner in the photo above, taken during tonight's State of the Union Speech, is actually more accurately representative than the one of President Obama. Boehner appeared simply stultified at times during the presentation, and for very good reason...

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UPDATED following release of Romney's federal 1040 form...
By Brad Friedman on 1/23/2012 4:53pm PT  

The conventional wisdom is that Mitt Romney has been attempting to withhold his tax returns from public scrutiny so that we'll not learn just how small the percentage is that he pays on his enormous income (which is said to be largely reported as capital gains, and thus taxed at just 15%.)

But there's another interesting issue that could be revealed when he releases his 2010 tax returns on Tuesday, as promised.

Remember last June when little-known Republican candidate Fred Karger filed a complaint with the state of Massachusetts charging that Romney committed voter fraud by using the unfinished basement of his son's house in Belmont, MA as his address for voting purposes after he'd sold his own him there in 2008, rather than registering to vote at his $12.5 million ocean front home in La Jolla, California or at his $10 million compound in New Hampshire?

Voter registration fraud in MA is punishable by a $10,000 fine and up to five years in jail. Residency requirements in MA are defined as "where a person dwells and which is the center of his domestic, social, and civil life." Yet, when Karger filed his complaint last Summer he noted that local residents in Belmont had told him at the time that the Romney's had "moved to California".

"I haven’t seen Mrs. Romney in over two years, and she used to come in here all the time," Karger says a local merchant told him. A member of the nearby Mormon Temple and Meetinghouse in Belmont, where Mitt and his wife Ann had attended weekly church services when they lived there, said she "hadn’t seen the Romneys since 2008."

If you don't recall all the specifics, here's our detailed coverage at the time, where the case didn't look good for Mittens, even while the state of Massachusetts seemed to be more interested in ignoring the allegations all together for some reason. The piece also includes details on some other recent apparent GOP voter fraud felons too.

And here's our in-studio interview with Karger [MP3] on the Mike Malloy Show from June 16, 2011, discussing the issue just after he'd filed his complaint...

Could be an interesting day tomorrow...

* * *

By the way...We should also note, no matter what we learn from Romney's tax returns tomorrow, his main GOP competitor Newt Gingrich also has a little "voter fraud" trouble of his own...

* * *

UPDATE 1/24/12, 11:27am PT: Well, here's what we seem to have concerning filing address from Romney's now-posted 2010 federal tax form...

The redaction of the street address is from the version of the form the Romney team has posted.

So what does this tell us at the moment?...

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John Wellington Ennis' new documentary short...
By Brad Friedman on 1/22/2012 11:38am PT  

What a difference two years and one brutally ugly, obscenely cash-based GOP Primary Election cycle makes. One wonders if even Republicans, at this point, are finally beginning to realize the problems wrought by the U.S. Supreme Court's infamous Citizens United decision two years ago yesterday.

If this Rasmussen poll can be believed, the Right-leaning polling firm now finds that 58% of Americans are calling for new campaign finance laws. That's up from three years earlier when, as ThinkProgress notes, a majority of the nation, according to the same polling firm, felt that it would be "good" if then-existing campaign finance laws were struck down by the court.

Well, they got their wish two years ago yesterday. Wonder how they feel about it now.

To mark yesterday’s somber and embarrassing anniversary, John Wellington Ennis, filmmaker of the wonderful, smart, insightful and often deftly amusing 2008 documentary FREE FOR ALL!: One Dude's Quest to Save Democracy, has another one on the way. The new one will focus on our now even-sorrier state of "democracy" in the long dark shadow of Citizens United. While the new feature-length film, Pay 2 Play: Democracy's High Stakes is due later this year, yesterday Ennis released a short documentary, based on some of the work he's done on that film, focusing on how Citizen's United came about, and what is has meant to the nation.

His new soulful short, Citizens United: How Did It Happen? follows below. I'm honored to say that I appear in it myself, but it's very good anyway. Ennis has a few additional thoughts on it all right here today. But, at the very least, you owe it to yourself to give his new short documentary below a look on this 2nd anniversary of the horrific SCOTUS decision that is actively undermining our absolutely most central values as a nation...

* * *

By the way, The BRAD BLOG's 8th(!) anniversary is this Tuesday! Unfortunately, we have not been the recipient of secret millions from corporate "people" in the wake of Citizens United. In fact, we have never enjoyed either corporate or foundational support for our completely independent work here, and continue to rely almost solely on you, our readers, to keep going. We have survived this long, barely, thanks to you! But we desperately need your support to continue.

Please consider an 8th Birthday donation to The BRAD BLOG to help us continue our important work in what is guaranteed to be a long, ugly and difficult Election Year, when your help here is needed the most. Also quite welcome are sustaining monthly donations of any amount you choose! For that (or our snail mail address for olde tyme paper check contributions), please see the light blue box about halfway down the right sidebar of all of our pages. Anything you can offer is greatly appreciated! My sincere thanks in advance!

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By Brad Friedman on 1/21/2012 5:11pm PT  

At the precise moment the polls closed across South Carolina tonight, with zero votes tallied by the 100% unverifiable e-voting systems the state forces voters to use on Election Day, all the news nets, save for CNN (which, in a short-lived moment of being responsible, thought it inappropriate to call the race with only 2 precincts actually reporting, so they waited until 3% were in before calling it), announced that Newt Gingrich was the "winner" of the all-important "First-in-the-South" 2012 Republican Primary.

Steven J. Dorst, however, posted the following shocking statement said to be from the South Carolina Election Commission disputing the news network's reported results which are based completely on the same Exit Polls they told us could not be relied upon after the Presidential Election in 2004 and the NH Primary Election in 2008...

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