w/ Brad & Desi
w/ Brad & Desi
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...
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...
|U.S. Chamber of Commerce 'Terror Tools' Spy Plot...|
|Wisconsin 2011 Supreme Court Election Debacle...|
|Japan Quake/Tsunami/Nuke Emergency...|
|WikiLeaks / Julian Assange...|
|More Special Coverages Pages...|
UPDATE 4/18/2013, 5:41pm PT: AP reports West, TX mayor says "around 35 people, including 10 first responders" were killed in the explosion. "He said not all the bodies have been recovered. Muska told the LA Times the number might be as high as 40 dead and said he got that number because all other residents and first-responders were identified."
UPDATE 4/18/13 3:23am PT: Waco's KWTX has revised their earlier report of "as many as 60 or 70" dead, which was sourced to the town's EMS Director Dr. George Smith. They now report a death toll of "five to fifteen people", as of 4:45am local time, sourced to "officials". AP confirms the report of "between five and 15 people" killed, a number which is expected to rise, according to Waco Police Sgt. William Patrick Swanton. They add that "more than 160 others" are injured. Among the dead are believed to be "A group of volunteer firefighters and a single law enforcement officer who responded to a fire call at the West Fertilizer Co. about an hour before the blast. They remained unaccounted for early Thursday morning."
UPDATE 10:30pm PT: Randy Lee Loftis at Dallas Morning News reports...
West Fertilizer Co. reported having as much as 54,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia on hand in an emergency planning report required of facilities that use toxic or hazardous chemicals.
But the report, reviewed Wednesday night by The Dallas Morning News, stated “no” under fire or explosive risks. The worst possible scenario, the report said, would be a 10-minute release of ammonia gas that would kill or injure no one.
The second worst possibility projected was a leak from a broken hose used to transfer the product, again causing no injuries.
Loftis adds via Twitter: "OSHA online records show no federal inspections of #West Fertilizer Co. in the past 5 yrs."
UPDATE 10:10pm PT: Texas Dept. of Public Safety spokesperson holds short press conference: "Tremendous amount of injuries...There are confirmed fatalities. Number not confirmed yet ... Devastation like Iraq or Oklahoma City ... 50-75 houses and apartments destroyed... Nursing home w/ 130 residents was in path of fire ... Wish I could tell you more." A reporter asks for a death toll number, asks the spokesman to "confirm 60-70" number. He says he "cannot confirm that number."
UPDATE 9:44pm PT: Dallas NBC affiliates live coverage cannot confirm death toll reported by Waco's KWTX below, but says 200+ injured, "at least 40 critically" at this moment.
UPDATE 8:59pm PT: Really hoping local media has it wrong... Waco's KWTX is now reporting: "West EMS Director Dr. George Smith says as many as 60 or 70 people died and hundreds were injured Wednesday night in a fertilizer plant explosion in West."
Amazing video of blast added to top: [More UPDATES at bottom of article]...
UPDATE 9:15pm PT:
— ron corning (@roncorning) April 18, 2013
West firefighters were dispatched to the plant earlier in the evening after an earlier fire rekindled.
Numerous injuries were reported and multiple ambulances were requested.
Several buildings were reported destroyed and a nearby nursing home was damaged.
There were reports that people were trapped in the nursing home and in an apartment building.
Scanner traffic indicated that some residents of both the nursing home and apartment building were severely injured.
Children are among the victims, according to reports from the scene.
Fire crews from virtually every community in the area headed to the scene.
A woman who was passing through West on Interstate 35 at the time of the explosion said she and her boyfriend saw a fireball 100-feet wide shoot into the air.
Gulf war veteran Paul L. Manigrasso felt the blast in Waxahachie.
“Based on my Naval experience...we knew immediately what it was, but cannot believe it occurred 40 miles away,” he said.
The photos tweeted below are pretty amazing. [ALSO UPDATES NOW ADDED]...
I'm getting ready for today's BradCast on KPFK/Pacifica, so, in the meantime, if you're wondering what you may have missed today, among other things, it seems the Boston Marathon Bomber has taken down another victim: CNN.
As Josh Marshall at TPM describes this montage, it was "CNN's 90 Minutes of Awesome"...
To be fair, it wasn't only CNN who blew it today, they just led the pack. Salon has the timeline of CNN's epic failure and the similar ones that accompanied it from Fox, AP and Reuters as well.
If South Carolina used anything but the exact same 100% unverifiable voting machines that previously resulted in the inexplicable election of Alvin Greene as their 2010 Democratic U.S. Senate nominee, I'd say Stephen Colbert's sister Elizabeth Colbert Busch has just won her upcoming May 7th Special Election for the U.S. House over former Gov. Mark "Appalachian Trail" Sanford.
The complaint says Jenny Sanford confronted Sanford leaving her Sullivans Island home on Feb. 3 by a rear door, using his cell phone for a flashlight. Her attorney filed the complaint the next day and Jenny Sanford confirmed Tuesday the documents are authentic.
The couple's 2010 divorce settlement says neither may enter the other's home without permission. Mark Sanford lives about a 20-minute drive away in downtown Charleston.
But again, before you Democrats get too excited at this point, please read this. Thank you.
UPDATE 4/17/2013: Sanford responds and National Republicans toss him under bus...
IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Some good news for a change: U.S. inks climate agreements with China and Japan; Another oil company quits the Arctic (for now); California sets wind energy record; Lax state regs contributed to Chevron refinery fire; Go underdogs: scrappy InsideClimateNews.org wins a Pulitzer; PLUS: Florida invaded by giant slimy snails ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): It’s official: EPA delays climate rule for new power plants; East coast seismic tests could harm marine mammals; CO: Benzene found 1400 ft from leak site; Critics slam NOAA drought report; Protesters mark 3 yr anniversary of BP Oil Disaster at trial; Reuters bungles climate science report; Antarctic ice melting at record rate: study; China cozies up to Iceland for Arctic access ... PLUS: Unhappy Returns: Climate Change's Big Tax on American ... and much, MUCH more! ...
[UPDATED MANY TIMES AT BOTTOM OF ARTICLE, NOW INCLUDING FINAL WRAP (FOR NOW) ON THE DAY AFTER.]
From AP, via National Memo...
Bloody spectators were being carried Monday to the medical tent that had been set up to care for fatigued runners. Police wove through competitors as they ran back toward the course.
“There are a lot of people down,” said one man, whose bib No. 17528 identified him as Frank Deruyter of North Carolina. He was not injured, but marathon workers were carrying one woman, who did not appear to be a runner, to the medical area as blood gushed from her leg. A Boston police officer was wheeled from the course with a leg injury that was bleeding.
About three hours after the winners crossed the line, there was a loud explosion on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the photo bridge that marks the finish line. Another explosion could be heard a few seconds later.
The blasts reportedly occurred near the Marathon headquarters in a nearby hotel. The headquarters has been locked down. Additionally, NBC News is reporting:
“Runners were coming in and saw unspeakable horror,” she said.
MANY UPDATES THROUGHOUT THE DAY, AND A WRAP UP ON THE DAY AFTER, ALL NOW FOLLOW BELOW...
So...funny thing. After yesterday's BradCast on KPFK, I drove the delightful Desi Doyen (of our Green News Report) out to The Young Turks' studio where she was scheduled to guest host once again last night. Two minutes or so before airtime, the third guest-host had yet to arrive. Guess who was drafted into last-minute duty?
Unshaven, jacket-free and prep-less, the show went on. With Desi, myself, and the great Jimmy Dore on board, it was an all-KPFK/Pacifica Radio episode of TYT, to boot!
We discussed, among other things, the mass stabbing in TX yesterday (where nobody died!); Rand Paul's claim that Republicans and he are civil rights champions; Obama's attempt to slash Social Security; and the plan for a vote in the U.S. Senate on a gun sale background check bill.
Below are a few short edited video segments with the three of us on last night's lively hour of The Young Turks [Update 4/16/2013 - The Turks have posted a few more clips --- including our discussion about Pat Robertson and climate change denier extraordinaire Rep. Joe Barton --- so I've also now added those below as well]...
IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Profits vs. People at Obama's EPA confirmation hearing; Victory for the people in the federal fracking wars; GAO says nuke evacuation plans inadequate; Climate change is coming for your wine; PLUS: Environmental groups push back against Big Oil with hysterical ads ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Solar panels could destroy U.S. utilities, according to U.S. utilities; Wind Energy Record in California, equal to 2 nuke plants; Obama Budget Drains Tax Breaks For Big Oil; Keystone XL using old, badly welded pipelines?; Rep. Joe Barton Says Biblical 'Great Flood' Proves Climate Change Not Man Made; Tea Party Leader arrest after Agenda 21 threats; 85% of tax experts support a carbon tax; Climate change's big tax on Americans; Nike: betting against climate scientists is 'false hope' ... PLUS: Video: Sen. Bernie Sanders' call for climate action is full of awesome ... and much, MUCH more! ...
On Wednesday's BradCast on KPFK/Pacifica Radio, I interviewed Brendan Cummings, senior counsel at the Center for Biological Diversity. He's fresh off his win in federal court where a U.S. Magistrate Judge found earlier this week that the Obama Administration violated federal law by not taking the effects of fracking into account in its environmental assessment before leasing areas of the Monterey Shale Formation in California to oil companies.
We discussed the case and its first-of-its-kind ruling, the impact it may (hopefully) have on similar fracking land leases elsewhere in the state and nation, and what the hell supposedly "liberal" Democrats like Barack Obama and CA Gov. Jerry Brown must be thinking.
I also covered this week's election fraud felony guilty pleas by a staffer for Newt Gingrich's 2012 Presidential campaign, the pending felony charges against a co-defendant and additional arrests that prosecutors say may be coming soon. All a part of Gingrich's failed attempt to qualify for the 2012 GOP Presidential primary in Virginia, and his unbelievable hypocrisy in downplaying fraud in his own campaign that was far worse than anything ACORN ever did (or, actually, didn't do.)
Finally, we had an extended Green News Report segment with Desi Doyen, to discuss, among other things, Rep. Joe Barton's amazing comments today, and the new attempt by Fox "News" to raise George Orwell from the grave by describing environmentalists as "climate deniers"...
Download MP3 or listen online below...
P.S. The BradCast now also airs Saturday at 3pm ET and Sunday at 4pm ET on The Progressive Voices Channel on TuneIn! (And download the great TuneIn app on your smart device if you haven't already!)
Yes, Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) actually said this...during a hearing in the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power today...
Here's what he actually said --- out loud --- via RAW STORY [emphasis added]...
“I would point out if you’re a believer in the Bible, one would have to say the Great Flood is an example of climate change. And that certainly wasn’t because mankind overdeveloped hydrocarbon energy.”
You may remember Barton from 2010, after the BP oil spill in the Gulf, as the man who actually apologized to BP's then CEO during a U.S. House hearing, for what he described as a White House "shakedown", after the company agreed to pay some $20 billion to help clean up the unprecedented disaster and help restore the livelihoods of many who lost everything thanks to the spill.
This seems to me to be a potentially larger issue --- with broader national implications --- than it's currently being regarded as in the bulk of the corporate media.
I'm prepping to interview Brendan Cummings, the lead litigator in this case, later today on my KPFK/Pacifica Radio show. [That interview is now here...] Cummings argued the case on behalf of the Center for Biological Diversity which sued the Obama Administration along with the Sierra Club.
So, for now, here's how the matter is being reported this week by Virginia Hennessey of the Monterey County Herald [emphasis added]...
Environmentalists and local representatives cheered the decision by U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Grewal, who said federal land managers violated a key environmental law when they auctioned off the rights to drill for oil and gas on public lands in Monterey County, home to one of the largest deposits of shale oil in the nation.
Grewal faulted the Bureau of Land Management for not reviewing the potential impacts caused by fracking before accepting bids for the drilling rights, in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act.
The judge did not say whether the leases themselves would be invalidated, but said he would decide their fate after the parties meet and send him a proposal next week.
"This important decision recognizes that fracking poses new, unique risks to California's air, water, and wildlife that government agencies can't ignore," said Brendan Cummings, senior counsel at the Center for Biological Diversity, who argued the case for the plaintiffs. "This is a watershed moment --- the first court opinion to find a federal lease sale invalid for failing to address the monumental dangers of fracking."
Environmentalists worry the technique can contaminate groundwater and pollute the air, as well as trigger seismic activity in the state's most earthquake prone area.
The affected leases sold in September 2011 include scenic stretches of southern Monterey County, where cattle ranchers and wine grape growers rely on tight water supplies to irrigate their pasturelands and vineyards. The area is also part of the historic range of the endangered California condor, whose global population was recently estimated at less than 400 birds.
The lawsuit alleged the bureau relied on inadequate 2006 studies to assess the environmental risks associated with increased oil and gas development. BLM maintained the leases would not necessarily involve fracking and new reviews were not necessary until requests were filed to drill on the leased property.
And here is the actual 30-page ruling [PDF] of U.S. Magistrate Judge Paul Grewal issued earlier this week.
UPDATE 4/11/13: My interview with Brendan Cummings, senior attorney from Center for Biological Diversity who won this landmark case, is now posted here...
IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Ernie Moniz, Obama's nominee for Energy Secretary, heads to easy confirmation in Senate; Former NRC chair says US nukes should be replaced; Fukushima is drowning in a sea of radioactive water; Exxon gets a medal for safety?!? PLUS: Conservative icon Margaret Thatcher believed in SCIENCE, and ACTION on climate change... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Frackers Losing $1.5b Yearly to Leaks; Australia's Coal Industry Headed For Failure; Judge denies BP's attempt to reduce oil spill payouts; Worst wildlife disease in N. America just got worse; Toxic chemicals in Great Lakes plastic pollution; Cost of air pollution scourge underestimated; Billionaire Koch Brother's bizarre self-delusion on climate science; When You Account For The Oceans, Global Warming Continues Apace... PLUS: How Far Can Climate Change Go? ... and much, MUCH more! ...
It's just the cost of doing business for the world's most profitable corporation. And that "cost" is barely a blip (that may be an overstatement) on their daily profit sheet.
As Rachel Maddow noted on Friday in the short report below, ExxonMobil is the nation's largest and most profitable corporation. It is larger than Walmart, Google, McDonald's, American Express and Goldman Sachs...combined.
And yet, the penalties they pay for violating federal safety laws leading to oil spills is almost nothing at all. For example, when Exxon was caught failing to inspect a portion of the Pegasus Pipeline --- the one fill with sticky, gooey, tar sands crude that we don't know how to clean up...the pipeline that ruptured last week in a suburban neighborhood in Mayflower, AR --- they were fined a grand total of $26,000.
That's a $26,000 fine out of the $122 million dollars in profit that Exxon makes in per day.
"There is nothing that Exxon fears from the federal government," Maddow notes. "They have so captured the parts of the government that are supposed to punish them when this sort of thing happens, that the pain that that sort of punishment could cause them, redounds to them, essentially, not at all."
Yes, it pays for companies like Exxon to violate the law with impunity, so it will be left to the people of Arkansas, as Maddow explains, to make the company pay any kind of real price for their crime...if they can...
More photos of the Pegasus tar sands pipeline rupture in Mayflower, AR, taken by the EPA, are now posted here. Give 'em a look. If President Obama approves the Keystone XL pipeline, this is the type of spill that could be coming to a neighborhood near you very soon.
Other than what appears, at first blush, to be the front entrance to the official Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Sewer System, the entire complex, shining at the top of a hill in Simi Valley, CA, is beautiful. Had we not arrived so late in the day, we would likely have paid the somewhat pricey $21 per head entrance fee to tour the actual museum, see the old Air Force One that is on display and, perhaps, even pay the extra $6 to check out the "Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives" exhibit which is also currently on display there, for some reason, until the end of the month.
As late as it was, however, we decided this time around to just enjoy the grounds, the memorial site, and the gift shop --- all free to access --- and make a mental note to try to go back for a full day at some point in the not too distant future.
But we were still able to take a few photos that you may enjoy, including this one just outside the entrance to the museum portion of the Reagan Presidential Library. I call it: "Trust But Photograph"...
Here are a few more of the photos we took yesterday, some odder and/or more ironic than others...
In January of 2012, just as the GOP Primary election cycle for President was getting under way, The BRAD BLOG reported exclusively that the office of the Virginia Attorney General had opened a criminal election fraud investigation into the failed effort by the campaign of Newt Gingrich to appear on the primary ballot in the Commonwealth.
Now, a woman hired by the campaign has "pleaded guilty to felony counts of fraud and perjury," according to a report just out tonight from Charlottesville's NBC affiliate WVIR.
31-year old Jennifer Derrebery reportedly worked for Gingrich's election contractor Stillwater LLC and, according to prosecutors, turned in campaign petitions with some 400 signatures in the failed attempt to collect the 10,000 needed for Gingrich's name to appear on the primary ballot last year. According to WVIR, nearly all of the signatures submitted by Derrebery were fake.
"We don't know what was going on, and we are pursuing charges for the people who did something wrong here in Augusta, on Mr. Gingrich's primary election," said Rupen Shah, assistant commonwealth's attorney.
Shah says there were similar problems in other parts of Virginia, where GOP candidates needed 10,000 valid petitioners to get on the ballot. Gingrich submitted more than that, but a quarter of the names could not be verified.
The report also notes that the "investigation is still active, and may result in additional arrests" and that Derrebery is cooperating with prosecutors and state police. WVIR says the "judge suspended all of her prison time". That is likely in exchange for her cooperation on the case. Her co-defendant, Adam Dustin Ward, faces a total of 42 criminal counts and will face a judge in June.
In late December of 2011, 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.
Clearly, the effort was by more than just "one guy," as Gingrich asserted at the time.
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."
In late January, an official at the Virginia State Board of Elections (SBE) described to described to The BRAD BLOG what had happened as "definitely an illegal act." He told us that the matter had been referred by the SBE to the office of VA's Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R). The Director of Communications for the office, Brian J. Gottstein, then confirmed to us that an investigation was "underway," though he could not disclose the details at that time...
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· Washington Monthly
· Media Matters
· Nashua Advocate
· Oliver Willis
· RAW STORY
· Sanoma State's
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· Chan Lowe
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