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Erick Erickson's Global Warming Denialist Tantrum
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Faking the Ferguson Docs:
KPFK 'BradCast'
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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?...

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Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2007 1:54pm PT  

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By Brad Friedman on 9/19/2007 3:47pm PT  

Good lord. Looks like the "Straight Talk Express" has driven straight over the cliff. But nobody has managed to tell McCain yet. Not even McCain. And to think I might have once considered voting for this guy...


(On an unrelated note: Working on a number of things today, so posting has been light. Reading with interest, however, the outpouring of reaction and comments from BRAD BLOG readers to the Tasering Incident. Let's call those comments "recommend reading" for the moment, as most are quite thought provoking. I may have more of my own thoughts on it all later...)

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Bush's Contention of '36 Nations in Iraq' Last Week Mirrors Cheney Lie in '04 Veep Debate
Incident Led to Infamous BRAD BLOG Exposé on Pre-Election White House Website Scrubbing...
By Brad Friedman on 9/15/2007 3:43pm PT  

During last Wednesday's televised address from the Oval Office, George W. Bush said, "We thank the 36 nations who have troops on the ground in Iraq."

As it turns out, you'll be stunned to learn that his number was a lie. But it wouldn't be the first time the Administration has lied about who is, and isn't, a part of the so-called "Multinational Coalition" in Iraq, as The BRAD BLOG reported exclusively as far back as October of 2004, prior to the Presidential Election.

Concerning Bush's "36 nations" mentioned last week, Spencer Ackerman reports, in an exclusive over at TPM, that the number is fudged at best, and just another unsupportable, outright lie by the administration at worst. The White House's fuzzy math used to comprise the "36 nations" with "troops on the ground in Iraq" apparently includes several nations which "aren't in Iraq in any capacity anymore," according to Ackerman.

The number also includes Canada's one soldier who had been serving at the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI), who has since been withdrawn; New Zealand's single troop (yes, like Canada, just one!) commitment to UNAMI; Tonga's now-withdrawn force; a single press aide from Iceland; and an unknown number from Hungary which may, or may not, have anybody still in Iraq at all as part of a tiny NATO contingent.

Bush's prepared statement lie on national television last week, however, simply continues the pattern set years ago, prior to the 2004 Presidential Election, by Dick Cheney, as The BRAD BLOG exposed in a series of reports back then in what would become our first breakthrough story to be picked up by both national and international media alike...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 9/14/2007 1:02pm PT  


If you've been living in a cave (or happen to be one of America's humorless Republicanists) the above video is a parody of this one.

As a side note, to those dead-ender Republicanists embarrassingly willing to display their desperation --- not to mention contempt for the first amendment --- with your fits of phony outrage over "General Betray Us," we'll join with Dick Cheney on this one by telling you to "go fuck yourselves."

Beyond that, we'll not be drawn into your quagmire of transparent attempts to hijack the real news, but will chose instead to move on to issues that actually matter. But nice try, losers!

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By Brad Friedman on 9/13/2007 6:39pm PT  

George W. Bush did not --- I repeat, did not --- melt into a puddle of tears tonight on live television during his address on Iraq. It was stunning. I say it was a home run!

(NOTE: My pre-speech expectations may or may not have been lower than some of yours.)

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By Brad Friedman on 9/12/2007 11:52am PT  

Written "at the tail end of a 15-month deployment" in Iraq, seven U.S. service members filed a devastating opinion piece in the New York Times last August 19th, headlined "The War as We Saw It."

Their insightful, nuanced, and intelligent piece countered the simplistic "We're makin' progress!" message of the Administration, the Republicans, their Media Talking Heads, and General Petraeus. It began this way...

As responsible infantrymen and noncommissioned officers with the 82nd Airborne Division soon heading back home, we are skeptical of recent press coverage portraying the conflict as increasingly manageable and feel it has neglected the mounting civil, political and social unrest we see every day.

The troops on the ground concluded that "Four years into our occupation, we have failed on every promise," adding, "we have substituted Baath Party tyranny with a tyranny of Islamist, militia and criminal violence."

Yance T. Gray and Omar Mora of the 82nd Airborne Division, two of the service members who wrote the op/ed "at the tail end" of their 15-month deployment, were killed outside of Baghdad on Monday.

According to Editor & Publisher:

Mora, 28, hailed from Texas City, Texas, and was a native of Ecuador, who had just become a U.S. citizen. He was due to leave Iraq in November and leaves behind a wife and daughter. Gray, 26, had lived in Ismay, Montana, and is also survived by a wife and infant daughter.

They are now, indeed, "heading back home."

Another of the seven, "Staff Sergeant Jeremy Murphy, an Army Ranger and reconnaissance team leader, was shot in the head while the article was being written. He was expected to survive after being flown to a military hospital in the United States."

(via A.J. Rossmiller at AMERICAblog)

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By Jon Ponder on 9/11/2007 2:26pm PT  


Guest Blogged by Jon Ponder, Pensito Review

During the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing today:

WARNER: I hope in the recesses of your heart that you know that strategy will continue the casualties, stress on our forces, stress on military families, stress on all Americans. Are you able to say at this time, if we continue what you have laid before the Congress, this strategy, that if you continue, you are making America safer?

PETRAEUS: Sir, I believe that this is indeed the best course of action to achieve our objections in Iraq.

WARNER: Does that make America safer?

PETRAEUS: Sir, I don't know actually. I have not sat down and sorted out in my own mind. What I have focused on and been riveted on is how to accomplish the mission of the Multinational Force in Iraq.

If the head of our military in Iraq doesn't know if the war there is making us safer, who does?

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Bush's 'Exit Strategy' for Iraq Is to Leave This Disaster for the Next President to Resolve
By Jon Ponder on 9/11/2007 7:37am PT  

Guest Blogged by Jon Ponder, Pensito Review

After months of hype, General David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker testified before the House Armed Services Committee yesterday about the status of George W. Bush's war in Iraq. Although neither of Bush's men uttered the exact phrase, the essence of their testimony could be summed up in three little words: "Stay the course."

Republicans --- especially the half-dozen or so GOP senators facing election in unsafe seats next year --- will take comfort in Petreaus's promise to recommend ending the surge by next summer. But even if Petreaus recommends reducing deployments to pre-surge levels, and if Bush agrees to it, the only surprise will be that the surge strategy itself was not a false cover for a permanent troop build-up. (And that remains to be seen.)

The stark reality is that Bush's current Iraq policy draws heavily from the playbook of his predecessor from Texas, Lyndon Johnson. The Vietnam War decimated LBJ's presidency, forcing him to leave office with no resolution in sight. Just as LBJ left the mess he created for Nixon and Ford to clean up, now Bush intends to leave his war in Iraq to his successor. As Ken Pollack at Brookings put it: "Bush has found his exit strategy."

Nothing matters --- not the safety of the troops, the lives and well-being of Iraqis, the viability of the U.S. military, or, certainly, the anti-Iraq war sentiments of a majority of Americans --- none of it matters in the face of Bush's urgent desire to rewrite his epitaph so that it won't say the war he started based on deception, divisiveness, and rank ineptitude was lost on his watch.

This strategy is as flawed as it is cynical. Look again at Johnson. Handing Vietnam to Nixon did nothing to improve his legacy. What saved Johnson's reputation was the fact he signed the Civil Rights Act, plus his stoic leadership in the wake of the Kennedy assassination.

Bush has no accomplishments --- nothing --- to weigh against this disastrous war. And the fact that hundreds, perhaps thousands, of U.S. troops and innocent Iraqis will die for the impossible goal of salvaging his place in history just compounds his disgrace.

UPDATE FROM BRAD: The good Pokey Anderson sends us this toon, which meshes neatly with Jon's commentary above...

Plus...Liberal, terrorist-loving, America-hating, cut-and-run, surrenderer George Will says "the surge has failed"...

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Government Statistics Show Nearly 1 in 4 Women Now Sexually Assaulted During Active Duty
By Alan Breslauer on 9/10/2007 4:24pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

Women serving in the military today are unlikely to share General Petraeus' rosy outlook given during his "Surge" testimony before Congress today. Because, as NOW on PBS reported last Friday, government compiled statistics show that nearly 1 in 4 active duty women in the military are victims of sexual assault. By contrast, during the much shorter first Gulf War, "about 15% of the women were raped."

The problem is compounded because many female soldiers fear the consequences of reporting such incidents. Also, little appears to happen when assaults are reported. According to the broadcast, there were 1,400 investigations of sexual assault last year which have resulted in only 72 court-martials.

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Three Smart Editorials Today Calling the Bad Guys Out and Demanding Accountability! Finally!
UPDATED: One More Smart Editorial Today Added, Calls Tom Feeney 'Shameless'!
By Brad Friedman on 8/30/2007 9:18am PT  

Blogged by Brad from Boulder, CO...

Must get off the grid today very shortly (and will be gone until after Labor Day), so not much time for comment here. Rather, I'll give you quick pointers to three superb editorials in today's papers as the voices of the good guys return to counter the charlatans and propagandists who've been dominating the media pages for far too long.

Please read on, for some heroic cries for accountability --- finally --- from the hopelessly compromised U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), Election Officials in general, and Sequoia Voting Systems in particular, all found in the op/ed pages today from Coast-to-Coast!...

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

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By Alan Breslauer on 8/23/2007 9:48am PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer

This short preview clip from tomorrow night's NOW episode shows a former Iraq war medic who sought conscientious objector status after, among other incidents, witnessing an innocent Iraqi man killed for driving too close to a convoy: "We're unfortunately hurting people who are in the wrong place at the wrong time. This individual obviously had no intention of harming us. There was nothing in his vehicle that was found. Yet, someone doesn't have a father. So that's a memory that really stuck with me."

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Speech to VFW Today May Be His Lowest Moment Yet - And That Is Saying a Lot
By Jon Ponder on 8/22/2007 10:01am PT  

Guest blogged by Jon Ponder, Pensito Review

When you hear the sound bites from George W. Bush's speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars today in which he compares his botched war in Iraq to the Vietnam war, think about what he was doing while thousands of U.S. soldiers were wounded and killed in the mud of Southeast Asia.

As is well known, rather than serving in Vietnam, George W. Bush spent the war years in a cushy assignment to the "Champagne Unit" of the Texas Air National Guard. There are witnesses from that era who say Bush's main preoccupations then were doing drugs, chasing women and driving drunk. There are also rumors he seriously damaged a fighter jet while taxiing it on a runway.

Conversely, no witnesses have ever been found who can verify that he completed his service with honor --- and there is circumstantial evidence that he did not. Around the time he was in the TNG, the Pentagon began requiring drug testing of all military pilots. The record indicates that Bush never submitted to a physical after the drug testing was required — and thus was never honorably discharged.

Today, in what may be his most astoundingly outrageous speech to date, Bush had the temerity to lecture the American people about lessons the country should have learned from Vietnam:

"Three decades later, there is a legitimate debate about how we got into the Vietnam War and how we left... Whatever your position in that debate, one unmistakable legacy of Vietnam is that the price of America's withdrawal was paid by millions of innocent citizens whose agonies would add to our vocabulary new terms like 'boat people,' 're-education camps,' and 'killing fields.'"

And:

"Here at home, some can argue our withdrawal from Vietnam carried no price to American credibility, but the terrorists see things differently."

Just when you think there is nowhere lower Bush can go to try to fool people into supporting his illegal and misbegotten war, he finds a way to make us even more disgusted with him, the people who work for him and their rank incompetence --- as well as with our leaders who insist on allowing him to remain in office.

Update: Flip-flop alert: In 2004, Bush bristled at comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam: "I think the analogy is false. I also happen to think that analogy sends the wrong message to our troops, and sends the wrong message to the enemy."

Update 2: The complete text of Bush's speech is here. The excerpt about Vietnam follows below the fold:

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

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Worries About Defending The Oil Fields
Says Obesity And Urban Couch-Potatoes Hindering Recruitment
By Alan Breslauer on 8/13/2007 3:59pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer




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Plans to Spend More Time with Family...
By Jon Ponder on 8/13/2007 5:02am PT  

Guest blogged by Jon Ponder of Pensito Review

Buried in a newly published profile in the Wall St. Journal comes word that Karl Rove is resigning as head of the White House political office effective August 31.

Rove says he is giving up his powerful position in order to spend more time with his family:

"There's always something that can keep you here, and as much as I'd like to be here, I've got to do this for the sake of my family," Mr. Rove says. His son attends college in San Antonio, and he and his wife, Darby, plan to spend much of their time at their home in nearby Ingram, in the Texas Hill Country.

Rove insists his exit has nothing to do with the multitude of investigations into suspicious Bush administration activities that all seem to lead to his doorstep:

"[I'm] not going to stay or leave based on whether it pleases the mob." He also knows he'll continue to be a target, even from afar, since belief in his influence over every Administration decision has become, well, faith-based.

As to the timing of his departure, Rove offers a bit of his signature plausible implausibility. He says his decision now was prompted by a demand from White House chief of staff Josh Bolten that staffers who stay on past the summer break must commit to serving Bush through the end of his term. That may sound reasonable on the surface but in fact the idea that Bolten could tell Rove when to come and go is not credible.

Whatever his excuse, Rove's departure will increase speculation that investigators are closing in him over his role in the illegal firing of U.S. attorneys for political purposes, vote caging schemes by the Bush-Cheney 2004 campaign, which he directed, or other as-yet unrevealed activities.

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Asked 'How Many Dead Americans is Saddam Worth?'
By Brad Friedman on 8/12/2007 12:43pm PT  


That was then, this is now, we suppose.

Dick Cheney, in 1994 (see short video at right), said "we got it right" by deciding not to invade Iraq after the liberation of Kuwait in '91, since "for the 146 Americans killed in action, and for their families --- it wasn't a cheap war."

"[I]n an effort to get Saddam Hussein, [the question for the President] was how many additional dead Americans is Saddam worth?" Cheney is seen answering the question at the time: "Our judgment was, not very many, and I think we got it right."

Apparently, the worth of Saddam has increased since '94, to at least 4,000 dead Americans and still counting.

But, as we said, that was then, and this is now. So flip-floppery doesn't matter, even though he predicted back then that "if we'd gone to Baghdad we would have been all alone. There wouldn't have been anybody else with us...It's a quagmire if you go that far and try to take over Iraq."

Smart guy. He should have listened to him.

Text transcript of the short interview is below, courtesy of Editor & Publisher....

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

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