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Latest Featured Reports | Friday, October 24, 2014
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GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
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GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


By Sue Wilson on 6/8/2012 10:35am PT  

Guest blogged by Sue Wilson

Whatever questions remain about Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker's recall election, there is no question that his campaign was built on big money, the likes of which we've never seen in a gubernatorial campaign before. And where did all that money go? Right into thin air - OUR air.

And as owners of the air - our public airwaves, to be precise - there is plenty we can do to combat the corrosive effect of big money on our elections, by holding our partners in broadcasting, local TV and radio stations, accountable to the communities they serve.

Citizens United, the Supreme Court ruling that the First Amendment prohibits government from restricting independent political expenditures by corporations and unions, is the reason huge amounts of money poured into the Walker camp from third parties like the billionaire Koch Brothers and others, (compared to the relatively paltry sum given to his opponent Mayor Tom Barrett by unions and others.)

As previously noted by The BRAD BLOG:

Focus will turn to the unprecedented amount of dark money raised and spent in the election, with Walker's campaign raising at least $30.5 million (a majority of it coming from out of state) to Barrett's $3.9 million. That, of course, is just the money raised by the two campaigns themselves. It doesn't take into affect the extraordinary amount of money spent by outside groups on behalf of the candidates, largely in support of Walker by a reportedly outsized ratio of 25 to 1.

So the Walker recall gave us the first glimpse at how the infamous Supreme Court ruling will affect campaigns for years to come unless something changes. . There is a large and growing movement now from organizations such as Move to Amend, to amend the Constitution to help put the brakes on the unlimited spending allowed by Citizens United. Such an effort, however, will take years to accomplish, if it ever happens at all.

But what's not being talked about is where most of this unrestricted money goes: about half of all campaign dollars go directly into your local radio and TV stations' wallets --- local broadcast stations which get licensed in the public/private partnership of broadcasting ONLY IF they "serve the public convenience, interest, and necessity."

As to the First Amendment, the Supreme Court has also ruled, in Red Lion v. FCC that "it is the right of the viewing and listening public, and not the right of the broadcasters, which is paramount."

Nonetheless, until Citizens United is changed or overridden in some fashion, things are only going to get worse --- unless we the people do something about it now with a few, still-unused tools that remain at our disposal...

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

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(And can the Supreme Court be far behind?)
By Sue Wilson on 5/29/2012 10:56am PT  

Guest blogged by Sue Wilson

Anyone remember a time when radio seemed friendly and informative, rather than hostile and manipulative?

I do. And I remember when it changed in 1996, after Bill Clinton signed the Telecommunications Act into law, and suddenly, huge corporations like Clear Channel began using our public airwaves --- those scarce radio frequencies which are owned by us ALL --- as a hammer to pummel Clinton and all other Democrats.

I've been working to correct the problem ever since 1998. I've advocated rewriting the Telecommunications Act, made the film Broadcast Blues to educate people about the problem, founded the Media Action Center to get local groups communicating with their local broadcasters, filed petitions to deny stations' licenses, and more.

Nothing worked.

But now, I believe I have found the legal means to put Talk Radio on trial at the FCC --- and perhaps eventually at the Supreme Court --- and, ironically enough, we just may have embattled Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to thank for it...

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

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And why isn't this bigger news?...
By Brad Friedman on 5/17/2012 5:07pm PT  

The mainstream corporate media spend a lot of time telling you about crap that doesn't matter. Then there's the stuff that does matter which you hardly hear about at all.

This is one of those stories. Hugely important, yet, almost inexplicably, barely reported on.

Happily HuffPo's Dan Froomkin --- who Tweeted it out this week by noting: "Hey! Did you just feel the campaign finance firmament move? I think Karl Rove did." --- has at least been staying on top of it...

WASHINGTON --- One of the most consequential campaign finance loopholes affecting the 2012 race --- the one allowing big-money donors to secretly funnel millions into campaign ads --- is now closed, after an appellate court ruling on Monday.

In April, a district court judge struck down a Federal Election Commission regulation that allowed donors to certain nonprofit groups --- including those created by Karl Rove and the Koch brothers --- to evade normal disclosure requirements.

And on Monday, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit turned down a request to stay that ruling on a 2 to 1 vote.

"This case represents the first major breakthrough in the effort to restore for the public the disclosure of contributors who are secretly providing massive amounts to influence federal elections," said Democracy 21 President Fred Wertheimer, one of the lawyers who filed the original lawsuit that led to the April decision, in a statement.

The office of House Administration Committee ranking Democrat Robert A. Brady issued a statement Tuesday saying, "As of today, any entity creating electioneering communications will have to disclose the identity of their top donors."

See the rest of Froomkin's piece for more very instructive info on this.

Now the Rovians have a remarkable ability to slither through newly found loopholes to ensure they are able to continue not doing the right thing when it comes to gaming our embarrassingly obscene campaign finance system. Moreover, election law professor Rick Hasen expects the "stay request to now end up before the Supreme Court, where the outcome may be different."

Nonetheless, this is a very positive development for those who believe in transparency, particularly in the dark infamy of our post-Citizens United world, and I'm amazed, on one hand, that this story isn't being discussed more by the media. On the other hand, given that the corporate media are actually the top beneficiaries of the Citizens United ruling, perhaps I shouldn't be so amazed.

* * *
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By Brad Friedman on 5/2/2012 10:11pm PT  

Yesterday, a committee in the UK Parliament investigating the NewsCorp phone hacking and bribery scandal concluded that Rupert Murdoch was "not a fit person" to run a major international corporation.

On today's BradCast on KPFK/Pacifica Radio, Eric Boehlert of Media Matters joined me to discuss that remarkable news, his sobering column yesterday on "Murdoch's Nixonian Demise", what it all means for NewsCorp properties here in the U.S. (like Fox "News", the New York Post and the Wall Street Journal) and how the story is being covered by the media in this country both on the Right and non-Right.

As usual, we're also joined by Desi Doyen for some Green News Report and a few listener phone calls round out the hour.

Download MP3 or listen online below [appx 58 mins]...

Reminder: I don't post ALL of my KPFK shows here, but you can subscribe to the RSS feed to get 'em all, or stop by the KPFK BradCast archives anytime.

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Corporate media and the 'Earth Day' Fail...
By Betsy Rosenberg on 4/22/2012 1:31pm PT  

Guest blogged by Betsy Rosenberg, The Green Front

"Earth Week" has culminated in today's Earth Day, that brief period once a year when you might actually see an in-depth green story, series, or panel discussion about an environmental topic on TV, or hear a few on the radio. Newspapers and magazines can be counted on to do an eco-themed article in late April, but that’s about it.

Sadly, that’s about all the consistent coverage we’ve gotten from mainstream commercial media over the past 15 years. That’s how long I’ve been focused on this odd programming void. While that reality remains unchanged, ecologically and meteorologically speaking, there’s been a groundswell of dramatic events.

This year I caught NBC’s Today Show --- as part of their “Green Is Universal” week (if it were truly “universal” shouldn’t we see coverage more than once a year?) – doing the obligatory eco-friendly products display, featuring bamboo plates, doormats woven from used lobster twine and purses made from aluminum can tabs and candy wrappers. Nice and feel-good, but is this the most useful and deepest offering on a once-a-year occasion? We’ve come a long way since recycling was our biggest environmental concern, no?

Earth Day Lite, as I call it, is almost a Hallmark holiday – expressed on recycled content cards of course. It’s as predictable as the climate has become UNpredictable. With glaciers melting, sea levels rising and freak storms taking lives and livelihoods at a record rate, why have we not progressed in our coverage of the environment, our life support system, and the tenor of these topics, for the most part, remains unchanged?

Is it because Americans have short attention spans, low tolerance for disturbing news, are just too busy to bother, and programmers fear such content will be a turn-off? I suspect it’s a little of all the above.

The environmental threats facing our country and planet have deepened, grown exponentially in number and complexity --- which is what usually happens when problems are ignored --- and yet, media coverage has, as anemic as it was, actually decreased.

According to Media Matters of America, the major networks --- ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox --- significantly decreased their coverage of climate change between 2009 and 2011 while spending twice as much time discussing Donald Trump as they did our worsening climate. If they compared how often Kim Kardashian “made news” vs. climate change, she would also likely come out on top. Perhaps if we called it "Kim Kardashian’s Climate Change" more Americans would tune in?...

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

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Uh, well, not really...
By Brad Friedman on 4/10/2012 6:42pm PT  

You've heard the Republican meme of the moment. Mitt Romney, the GOP front-runner and presumptive Presidential nominee recently told supporters that the price of gas has "doubled under this president."

Newt Gingrich released an ad last month charging: "Since Barack Obama’s inauguration, gas prices have doubled."

Their reliable allies at the fossil-fuel industry-funded astroturf trade group American Energy Alliance have a similar ad, declaring: "Since Obama became president, gas prices have nearly doubled." And, of course, reliable wingnut stooges like Katie Pavlich at the rightwing "news" site Townhall are all too happy to help spread the propaganda on all of their behalves with articles like the one she filed yesterday headlined "Gas Prices Officially Doubled Under Obama."

Of course, it's not actually all that true. Surprised? More accurately, it's an outright lie, since the folks who are pushing it know damned well how intentionally misleading it is. Worse, we've yet to see anyone in the corporate media bothering to correct it.

FACTS: According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), the average price for a regular gallon of gas today across the U.S. is $3.92.

The week that Obama took office in January of 2009, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration it was $1.83/gallon. But that was just after the price of oil had come crashing down on the global market thanks to the crash of the global economy which led to the Great Recession --- all under the leadership of George W. Bush.

Just months before President Obama took office, and before the crash, in July of 2008, during the Administration of failed former oil man George W. Bush, gas prices had hit their all-time record average high in the U.S. at $4.11/gallon.

Here's what the average price of gas actually looks like in the U.S. from April of 2004 through today, according to GasBuddy.com's data and our own clarity placed over the top [click to enlarge]...

So, yes, strictly speaking the price of a gallon of gas has roughly doubled since Obama took office. That, of course, is barely even half of the story, as you can see above...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 4/9/2012 9:42am PT  



Mike Wallace, 1918 - 2012

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PLUS: New calls to 'Tax the Super-PACs'...at 99%...
By Brad Friedman on 3/30/2012 1:03pm PT  

In today's New York Times, Jim Arkedis and Lindsay Mark Lewis of the Progressive Policy Institute (Lewis also previously worked for the DNC), warn that Super-PACS aren't just perverting the electoral system through millions in deceptive ads for or against the candidates they are secretly funded to support, but they may also pose an even more direct, more insidious threat to our democracy.

After acknowledging that even President Obama is now embracing the same shadowy-funded PACs he once claimed to eschew, as he refuses to "unilaterally disarm", there is a different between inclinations of left and right, in that one side generally works to increase voter turnout, while the other hopes to suppress it. The lack of accountability and the supposed "firewall" of separation between Super PACs and candidates creates a situation rife for the worst kind of dirty tricks and voter suppression in an atmosphere which is even more difficult to regulate than in the past (when such dirty tricks were already pretty easy to pull off without paying a price --- or, at least, without a price that could be paid before it was far too late).

Their warning is both compelling and ominous, particularly as we don't need to look very far into the recent past --- even here at The BRAD BLOG --- in order to find evidence in support of it...

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

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How can we trust their reporting as unbiased and neutral given their opposition to recall of the Republican Governor?...
By Brad Friedman on 3/26/2012 7:03pm PT  

Out of scores of journalists who work for the Gannett Wisconsin Media-owned Green Bay Press-Gazette, just seven were willing to offer their personal, non-business related support for a recall of Wisconsin's controversial Gov. Scott Walker. They are now being disciplined.

The rest, the vast majority of Press-Gazette employees, all cast a vote for their support of the Republican Walker's fitness to complete his term as governor by refusing to sign the petition for his recall.

How can we now trust them to report without bias on the Walker story they are tasked with covering in a neutral fashion?!

Despite the clear and unethical conflict of interest demonstrated by their support for Walker --- for which the Governor is almost certainly grateful --- those journalist are somehow still expected to cover the Democratic Party and union-supported political challenges against him and his administration in an impartial manner.

Clearly, that is impossible. At least according to an editorial published last night by Kevin Corrado, the president and publisher of the Green Bay Press-Gazette...

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

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UPDATE: CA Assembly asks U.S. Congress to pass a constitutional amendment overturning Citizens United...
By Ernest A. Canning on 3/22/2012 10:17am PT  

Guest editorial by Ernest A. Canning

Citizens United rejected a congressional legislative ban on corporate campaign contributions. It says nothing about the ability to tax such contributions...

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

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By Brad Friedman on 3/10/2012 3:06pm PT  

It so long and detailed, with so many clickable links within it, it took us this long to get through the entirety of a brilliantly written post mortem on the life, havoc and "malicious career" of Andrew Breitbart, as written by mobutu and Gen. Ze'evi at Gawker earlier this week.

The piece is as much about the unforgivable failure of the corporate media who fell, repeatedly, for Breitbart's scams as it is about Breitbart himself. That failure, of course, is the only reason, as we noted in our own "obit", that The BRAD BLOG ever even bothered to step into the toxic swill of his particularly poisonous pig pen of fear, loathing and cruelty towards his fellow man.

The article offers several nods to our months-long tangle with the New York Times and others in the "liberal media", over the "maliciously, fabricated hoax" that was the phony ACORN "scandal". An historic reminder of our occasionally successful attempt at trying to shake the compliant lapdog media out of their stupor to explain how they had fallen embarrassing victim to little more than a series of cheap, partisan con jobs. For example, the story notes how Breitbart's own lies about the ACORN hoax were "definitively debunked on factual grounds several times over" here at The BRAD BLOG and elsewhere.

The entire thing is worth a read --- if you're feeling dirty --- if only for its exceedingly smart prose and unabashed truth-telling about the realities of the shameful moment in American history when a huckster and dishonest profiteer such as Breitbart was able to both flim-flam and expose our once-great Fourth Estate for the utter --- and deadly --- embarrassment they have now become.

Here's just one snippet from the piece to give you an idea...

In anything other than a throughly beshitted republic, Breitbart's shamelessly pimping a false exposé like [the ACORN "Pimp" Hoax] would have seen him broken on a rack. That same magical land of justice and proper incredulity would at least have addressed itself to the quality of investigation brought by an accuser, rather than running like pageload mercenaries and buzz merchants to update their sites' banner headlines. Instead, Breitbart's allegedly sworn enemies did his work for him. They weren't his antagonists: They were his accomplices. When Andrew Breitbart mounted the head of a community organization onto his wall, it was the liberal media that had hoisted it into place.

You can, and should, read it all here.

P.S. So long as we're wading through this particular muck today, see also The Fix's Maer Roshan and Hunter R. Slayton's similarly smart take, and very fine reporting, on "What Really Killed Andrew Breitbart? The Likely Cause of Death the Mainstream Media Ignored", as published at Alternet on Thursday. It documents, among other things, how, even in his death, Breitbart still has the mainstream corporate media shuddering in fear of the mighty reach of this ultimately very small man.

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TONIGHT: All of your worst 2012 nightmares, plus great news out of Wisconsin!
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 1/13/2012 3:58pm PT  

[Now UPDATED with tonight's nightmarish audio archives below! Enjoy!!!]

Mike has the night off! So we're back! Guest hosting the nationally-syndicated Mike Malloy Show on Friday the 13th! It's a Nightmare on Malloy Street!...

We'll be BradCasting all the horror LIVE from 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the uprising globe from the studios of L.A.'s KTLK am1150 in beautiful downtown Burbank. Join us by tuning in, chatting in, Tweeting in and calling in! Our LIVE chat room will be up and rolling right here at The BRAD BLOG, as usual, while we are on the air. Please stop by and join the fun while you're listening! (The Chat Room will open at the bottom of this item a few minutes before airtime, see down below, just above "Comments" section.)

Scheduled tonight (so far):

  • YOUR WORST NIGHTMARE! Me! With three hours over our public airwaves to talk about Iowa, New Hampshire & South Carolina voting nightmares! The nightmare that is Election 2012! And other related and unrelated nightmares!
  • GRAEME ZIELINSKI, Spokesman from the Wisconsin state Democratic Party, with some late breaking news on the "Recall Scott Walker" effort in the Badger State!
  • PLUS! The fraud that is James O'Keefe; the "cold" War against Iran; the failure that is the NY Times; the GOP wants more corporate money in campaigns; and all the nightmares on your minds, via your calls over your public airwaves at 877-520-1150 and your tweets to @TheBradBlog!...

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on SiriusXM Ch. 127. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate KPTR 1450 in Palm Springs or at WhiteRose Society or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Tonight's show was a NIGHTMARE! Don't believe me? You can now listen to the full show, sans commercials, in the archives posted below. (You can also read the nightmarish chat room archives below too!) Be afraid...Be very afraid!...

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

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The progressive candidate legally filed his delegates; the President, reportedly, did not...
By Ernest A. Canning on 1/9/2012 4:33pm PT  

Guest blogged by Ernest A. Canning

Did you know that Democrats will have a progressive alternative to President Barack Obama on the ballot in New Hampshire tomorrow? We're guessing you didn't.

Moreover, how ironic is it that Darcy G. Richardson, the only progressive Democrat with the courage to challenge the incumbent Democratic President in tomorrow's "First-in-the-Nation" primary, at one time managed the 1988 Presidential campaign of the late Sen. Eugene J. McCarthy? It was McCarthy's receipt of 42% of the vote in the 1968 NH Democratic primary which led to the announcement by President Lyndon B. Johnson that he would neither seek nor accept the nomination of the Democratic Party for President.

How predictable is it, given the utter failure of the corporate owned media to fulfill its constitutionally envisioned function of insuring an informed electorate, that so few Americans are so much as aware of the fact that President Obama is not running "unopposed" in tomorrow's 2012 NH Democratic Primary?

Finally, what impact, if any, will there be for the fact that President Obama reportedly failed to timely submit a slate of national convention delegates to the NH Secretary of State as mandated by the NH Elections Code?...

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

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Former LA Governor's powerful indictment of unrestricted corporate money in politics shut out of national debate...
By Ernest A. Canning on 1/8/2012 1:06pm PT  

Guest blogged by Ernest A. Canning

In the latest tracking poll released out of New Hampshire, the Suffolk University/7 NEWS poll [PDF], TX Governor Rick Perry receives 1% support from 500 likely voters in the Granite State. Former LA Governor and four-term U.S. Congressman Buddy Roemer also received 1%. In fact, Roemer received approval from a higher number of respondents (6) than Perry did (4). And yet, Perry was allowed to participate in both last night's GOP Presidential debate in NH as televised on ABC, as well as this morning's on NBC. Roemer was not allowed to participate in either of them.

In fact, out of some 16 GOP Presidential debates to date, Roemer has not been allowed to participate in a single one of them.

The exclusion of Roemer from every single Republican Presidential Debate provides but the latest example of how the corporate-owned media limits the ability of the American people to elect --- or even hear from --- individuals who challenge oligarchic corporate control of our ostensibly democratic institutions.

A candidate like Roemer, who has embraced Occupy Wall Street and spoken (and Tweeted) powerfully and openly and passionately and continuously against the corrupting influence of corporate money on our democratic institutions, poses a direct threat to the corporate media bottom line --- a corporate media which is looking forward to approximately $3 billion in political ad revenues in 2012, courtesy of Citizens United --- the U.S. Supreme Court's infamous 2010 decision which has flung the door wide open to the corrupting influence of unlimited anonymous corporate campaign expenditures.

Whether it entails ending coverage of the Rose Parade before thousands of Occupy demonstrators, their signs and floats could be seen or limiting the scope of discourse in both Presidential Debates and the selection of the nominee in general, exclusion provides a powerful means by which the corporate media maintains the status quo...

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

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TONIGHT: New Years Eve EVE! And visits from friends on our last show before the 2012 voting begins...
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 12/30/2011 4:06pm PT  

[Now UPDATED below with the archives from the year's final Malloy Show below! And it was a fun one! Enjoy!]

Tonight it's our final night guest hosting the nationally-syndicated Mike Malloy Show for the year and, the final Mike Malloy Show of the year, for that matter! It's also our last one before the 2012 voting finally begins...

For our New Years Eve Eve show, we'll be BradCasting again LIVE from 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the uprising globe from the studios of L.A.'s KTLK am1150 in beautiful downtown Burbank. Join us by tuning in, chatting in, Tweeting in and calling in! Our LIVE chat room will be up and rolling right here at The BRAD BLOG, as usual, while we are on the air. Please stop by and join the fun while you're listening! (The Chat Room will open at the bottom of this item a few minutes before airtime, see down below, just above "Comments" section.)

Scheduled tonight (so far):

  • END OF THE YEAR/BEGINNING OF ELECTION YEAR ROUND-UP: Everything we've yet to get to this year, and everything you'll need to know as the zany 2012 election year circus will finally get under way!
  • VISITS FROM FRIENDS: In addition to (hopefully) lots of calls from you guys, we may have a few visits from a few friends o' the blog!
  • PLUS! Anything and everything that's on your minds at year's end as 2012 awaits, via your calls over your public airwaves at 877-520-1150 and your tweets to @TheBradBlog!...

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on SiriusXM Ch. 127. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate GREEN 960 in San Francisco or at WhiteRose Society or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Had a great last-show-of-the-year show tonight! LOTS of fun! If you missed any part of it, the full, commercial-free audio archives are now posted below (along with the archives from tonight's chat room). A really lively end-of-year show! Until next year, enjoy!...

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

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