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VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...

By David Edwards on 12/6/2005 8:13am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards

Stephen Colbert, host of The Comedy Channel's Colbert Report, spoofed Fox New's top rated Bill O'Reilly. Colbert regularly mocks O'Reilly's "Talking Points" segment with his own version call "The Word".

Colbert's latest rant, pokes fun at Bill O'Reilly's much-hyped "War on Christmas". O'Reilly has previously attacked the The Comedy Channel, calling it "The Secular Channel". (Check out this BRAD BLOG report for the full scoop.)

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...




By David Edwards on 12/6/2005 6:57am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards

Secretary of State Rice is in Europe this week defending the U.S. policies including the use of secret prisons and the CIA practice called "extreme rendition".

ABC News is reporting that prior to Rice's European trip, the CIA moved quickly to relocate all secret prisoners located in Europe.

Current and former CIA officers speaking to ABC News on the condition of confidentiality say the United States scrambled to get all the suspects off European soil before Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived there today. The officers say 11 top al Qaeda suspects have now been moved to a new CIA facility in the North African desert.

...
All but one of these 11 high-value al Qaeda prisoners were subjected to the harshest interrogation techniques in the CIA's secret arsenal, the so-called "enhanced interrogation techniques" authorized for use by about 14 CIA officers and first reported by ABC News on Nov. 18.

Rice today avoided directly answering the question of secret prisons in remarks made on her departure for Europe, where the issue of secret prisons and secret flights has caused a furor.

...
Of the 12 high-value targets housed by the CIA, only one did not require water boarding before he talked. Ramzi bin al-Shibh broke down in tears after he was walked past the cell of Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the operational planner for Sept. 11. Visibly shaken, he started to cry and became as cooperative as if he had been tied down to a water board, sources said.




PLUS: New Poll Suggest the Former GOP Majority Leader is in Trouble with Constituents
By Brad Friedman on 12/5/2005 6:49pm PT  

As former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay received troubling legal news today in Texas where he's been indicted on several charges related to money-laundering campaign contributions for Republican candidates, Fox "News" did their best to buck up the spirits of "The Hammer".

The judge in the case rejected DeLay's motion to drop all charges, though he did toss out one charge for "conspiracy" which hadn't yet been against the law in Texas at the time DeLay allegedly conspired. The decision now paves the way for the criminal trial to begin and for DeLay to be permanently replaced in his House leadership position.

But we hope you "Fair and Balanced" zombies out there will note how it was reported via several different Email Alerts today:

From Yahoo Email Alert...

Subject: Breaking News

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) A Texas judge has refused to dismiss money laundering charges against Rep. Tom DeLay but threw out conspiracy charges.

From CNN Email Alert...

Subject: CNN Breaking News

-- Judge tosses conspiracy charges against ex-House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, but allows money-laundering charges, according to AP.

And finally, from "We Report, You Decide" Fox "News" Email Alert...

Subject: FNC Alert

TEXAS JUDGE DROPS CONSPIRACY CHARGES AGAINST REP. TOM DELAY

Sigh...

Meanwhile, on the tube version of the above Alert, John Gibson's plans to mislead are quashed by Judge Andrew Nepalitano who manages to sneak a bit of truth past the Fox police:
-- Fox News Video in Windows Media format...

And yet, despite FNC's failure to inform Americans about what's really going on in their Government (or perhaps more accurately, their demonstrated attempt to misinform them), it seems the message is getting out anyway. More bad news tonight for Tom DeLay, this time from his own home district in Houston, courtesy of Jesse at Stakeholder who also has additional info there on the battle brewing to replace DeLay permanently in the House Leadership...

CNN/USA TODAY/GALLUP POLL (December 1-4)

TEXAS DISTRICT 22

QUESTION: If Tom DeLay runs for re-election in 2006, in general, are you more likely to vote for the Republican candidate Tom DeLay or for the Democratic Party's candidate for Congress?

Democrat 49%
Tom DeLay 36%

Opinion of Tom DeLay

Favorable 37%
Unfavorable 52%
Unfamiliar 11%

Charges Against DeLay Are...

Definitely true 15%
Probably true 40%
Probably false 26%
Definitely false 8%

(A well overdue hat-tip to BRAD BLOG's not-so-secret weapon David Edwards for his "News Alert" info!)




By John Gideon on 12/5/2005 5:06pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

The Colorado SoS announced today that 10 counties may have to procure new voting machines. Their ES&S and Sequoia Optech Eagle III-P precinct scanners did not properly count the votes in last month's election and a hand recount in the 10 counties resulted in two races being changed. Is this just an excuse to force the counties to buy DREs? I dunno but these are precinct based optical scan machines and they were being used, in part, to count absentee and mail-in ballots. ...

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




Claims Pentagon Contractors Found Doing Little More Than Funnelling Tax-Payer Funds to Republican Pols!
By Brad Friedman on 12/4/2005 7:30pm PT  

Joseph Cannon has been digging deep and looking under the slimy rock of the Duke Cunningham bribery scandal to take a closer look at the MZM and Wilkes Corp firms and seems to be finding what appears to be millions of tax-payer dollars funnelled through fake "Defense Contractors" (who actually appear to do nothing) and then straight into the pockets and campaigns of scores of Republican politicians.

This seems to be the sort of thing actual journalists used to report, the U.S. Congress used to investigate and the Justice Department used to prosecute. Thank God that bloggers like Joe get the big big bucks for doing all of that (save the prosecute part) even while they have a day job!

So is Cannon onto something big here? I'm busy digging into a few things of my own, but it seems to me that his work deserves a much closer look...

UPDATE: (Upon further reflection on Joe's work, it seems to me that if he's got this right, this could be the mother of all historic scams in this country...For that reason, my natural inclination says that this can't be. The implications here would be so enormous, my initial reaction is that he must have something wrong here. But does he?)




A Look Back at the Most Notable Stories from the Week That Was In Our Continually Crumbling Democracy...
By John Gideon on 12/4/2005 5:26pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon, of VotersUnite and VoteTrustUSA

As an introduction, the "DVN Top 5" is a feature that I have been providing in the weekly voting newsletter of VoteTrustUSA. The November 28 edition can be found here. The selection of what will be the "Top 5" for each week and where it goes on the list is all mine. The fact that you may disagree with my choices is great because it shows that you have been reading the DVN articles that I've posted throughout the week here on BRAD BLOG!...

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




ALSO: Jewish Fox Newsie Masquerades as Christmas Saving Crusader by calling America 'A Christian Nation' as 'Reported' by Phony GOP 'News' Outlets
UPDATE: More Info on the Possibly Psychotic Don Feder who Seems to be Celebrating Christmas by Encouring Readers to Impale Judges With Whom They Disagree...
By Brad Friedman on 12/4/2005 4:40pm PT  

On the Friday edition of The O'Reilly Factor's "Talking Points Memo" segment, self-proclaimed satirical journalist/host Bill O'Reilly used a year-old clip from Comedy Central's The Daily Show in an attempt to make it look as though "Secular Central" (as he referred to them) were out to get Christmas!

The latest chapter in O'Reilly's phony "War on Christmas" or whatever the hell he calls his sad cry for attention --- and/or swell reason to avoid reporting on actual news --- provides more ammunition to the argument that the Fox "News" Channel's #1 personality continues his bizarre slide into bonkerhood/irrelevancy.

Previously, the so-called "Christian" Right had decried the commercialization of Christmas, but having apparently found that tactic not as politically adventageous as they might might have liked, have this year declared "war" on whatever retail outlets don't remind shoppers of their latest reason for the season: The Commercialization of Jesus Christ as a Weapon in a Self-Induced Paranoia-laden Phony Culture War (or, as Tom Delay's one-time aide, the now-indicted Michael Scanlon described it via email: a way to fire up the "Christian wackos" to trick them into voting for Republicans).

O'Reilly introduced a video clip from The Daily Showduring Friday's "Talking Points Segment" by saying "Predictably, the opponents of public displays of Christmas continue to put forth counter arguments." He then referred to Comedy Central as "Secular Central."

Trouble is, the clip appears to be from last year's Daily Show as evidenced by a) We watched every episode this week and didn't see the clip O'Reilly played, b) Daily Show "correspondent" Samantha Bee is standing in front of a 2004 calendar and c) Bee is currently quite noticably pregnant...which she is noticabaly NOT in the clip O'Reilly used.

-- Video in Window Media format...
-- Video in QuickTime format...

UPDATE: 12/6/05 Media Matters picks up on our story. ... A few details added: O'Reilly also played the Samantha Bee clip on the same afternoon's Radio Factor and referred to it as "what happenened there last night" (he dropped the "last night" part when misleading viewers later that evening on his TV show). They also cut the first part of Bee's comment from the TV version, but played it on the radio where she began the joke by saying, "But really, let's face it. All other days bow down to the 25th..."

In related news, O'Reilly and the other GOP shamelessly opportunistic Political Paranoia Peddlers featured stories about the Jewish Rightwing wackos who are also jumping on the Chutzpa Wagon to publicize their own mock outrage about this non-issue.

Former Boston Herald editorial writer and O'Reilly Factor guest Don Feder, tossed his tallis into the hat to try and help trump up O'Reilly's phony pet-project du jour by giving statements to the Cybercast News Service (CNS) on Friday. The statements were given by Feder to CNS --- a Republican propaganda organization created by GOP operative Brent Bozell and edited by Scott Hogenson, a long time director of operations in the RNC Press Office --- under the guise of heading up a Jewish group claiming to be supporting the effort to "save Christmas." In one of his statements, Feder, who is apparently Jewish, is quoted by CNS as stating that "America is a Christian nation."

Feder, a hard-right political consultant, bomb-thrower and smear-merchant (the kind O'Reilly pretends to not like) and the President of a group calling itself "Jews Against Anti-Christian Defamation" (JAACD) goes on to inflate his and O'Reilly's own strawman "war" by saying "we think it's good for Christians to be able to celebrate their holiday." As if any American had ever suggested otherwise.

The JAACD, which announced their mission to "Wage Web Warfare Against The Liberal Establishment" on its website, was formed last April. Jewish comedian Jackie Mason, who is also on the board of JAACD, was provided to O'Reilly's show as a guest on Friday. One of the other Republican propaganda "news" services, NewsMax.com ran a similar article in lockstep with their comrades at CNS on that same day. No mention was given in either article about Feder's relationship with O'Reilly.

Incidentally, no mention is given that "America is a Christian nation" in either the U.S. Constitution or the Declaration of Independence declaring America's nationhood.

CNS, NewsMax and O'Reilly have similarly forgotten to mention that as their shameless anti-American crusade for the hearts and minds --- and votes --- of the Rightwing Christian "wackos" continues.

(ADDENDUM: For those unfamiliar with all of this nonsense, see Bob Cesca's hilarious piece at HuffPo which also discusses Crooks & Liars discovery of O'Reilly's own Fox store offering "Holiday Ornaments" for your "Holiday Tree". Since John Amato reported that at C&L, by the way, Fox's store has been ethnically cleansed of the offensive balls, which several of their shows had offered, in favor of biblically accurate "Christmas" balls instead.)

UPDATE: Judging a man by the company he keeps... More on the hate-mongering, possibly psychopathic and self-discrediting Don Feder follows...

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




Coulter Supporters Continue Harassment of Lydia Cornell and Her Family After Rightwing Mouthpiece Refuses to Remove Petulant Posting
By Brad Friedman on 12/4/2005 3:03pm PT  

MSNBC picks up on Ann Coulter's pathetically infantile attack on BRAD BLOG Guest Blogger Lydia Cornell by naming Coulter in their "Worst Person in the World" segment Friday. She receives this dubious honor for "posting the personal phone number and email of a blogger who was critical of her" and for otherwise referring to to groups who disagree with her as "Nazi block watchers."

-- Video in Windows Media format...
-- Video in QuickTime format...

Indeed it's been nearly a full week since the cowardly hate-mongering "satirist" Coulter posted Cornell's private information on the front page of her website in petulant retaliation for an article Cornell wrote here on BRAD BLOG. Coulter has refused to take it down despite Cornell's polite requests to do so. The Ivy League educated Republican mouthpiece also regaled her readers by adding "Death is sexier than Lydia Cornell" to a post which included a polite private email from the actress/author.

In the bargain Cornell and her family continue to receive harassment and threats via her personal email and phone number which Coulter supplied to her millions of her uncompassionate attack dog sycophants who (predictably) refuse to condemn Coulter's indefensable lapse of simple "netiquette" and common decency. They --- like so many of their fake "conservative" brethren --- would rather attack someone whose message they don't like, rather than condemn one of their own or force them to take person responsibility for abhorrent behavior. Clearly these folks recognize neither "compassion" nor "conservatism" as anything other than a blunt linguistic instrument with which they are to bludgeon their perceived American "enemies".

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By David Edwards on 12/4/2005 2:50pm PT  


Guest blogged by David Edwards

Ann Coulter was called out on Countdown's nightly "Worst Person in the World" segment for posting the personal information of one of her critics on her website. They also noted that she referred to liberals as "Nazi block watchers" on Fox's O'Reilly Factor

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...




North Carolina in Bed With Diebold...
By Brad Friedman on 12/4/2005 2:10pm PT  

(More details on the above here if you missed it.)




By David Edwards on 12/4/2005 9:13am PT  


Guest blogged by David Edwards

This morning on ABC's This Week, Congressman John Murtha told George Stephanopoulos that he believes the Bush Administration will pull out of Iraq in 2006.

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...
Audio in MP3 format...




By John Gideon on 12/3/2005 5:15pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

Today we have a hodge-podge of news items. It seems that most of the news makers of the last few days are having a snooze and getting ready for the next flurry of excitement. Today we have a report from Texas were there is concern about a contract they have with Accenture (you may remember them as Arthur Anderson Consulting and their work with Enron) now that Colorado has just canceled a voter data base contract with them. In Ohio a judge has denied a request by attorneys for Gov. Taft and SoS Blackwell to dismiss a lawsuit against them by the state LWV....

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




Bush Misleads, Democrats Fracture Over Iraq Plan
From Daily Show to Countdown to Other Media Outbreaks on the Politics of War...
By David Edwards on 12/3/2005 12:00pm PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...

On Wednesday, President Bush gave a speech at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis to unveil an unclassified version of something called the "National Strategy for Victory in Iraq".

As Maureen Dowd notes in today's NY Times, the Bush Administration's recently released plan is not a plan for victory as much as badly crafted political talking points. We wonder if the victory that Mr. Bush is planning for has more to do with the 2006 elections than achieving stability in Iraq.

Mr. Bush asserts that progress is being made in Iraq but his facts don't stand up to the truth on the ground. One of the most glaring discrepancies is Bush's claim that Iraqi troops lead the recent assault on Tal Afar. The Time Magazine reporter, Michael Ware, who was embedded with Iraqi troops in the Tal Afar battle has a different story:

I was in that battle from the very beginning to the very end. I was with Iraqi units right there on the front line as they were battling with al Qaeda. They were not leading. They were being led by the U.S. green beret special forces with them.

It's no surprise that a majority of Americans don't believe that the Bush Administration has a plan for victory in Iraq.

While the Bush team is flailing to find decent talking points, the Democrats can't seem to agree on any plan for resolution of the Iraq war crisis. By the end of this week the Democrats were holding at least three different positions:

  • Lieberman - Let 'em die. Whatever Bush says is OK with me.

  • Hillary - Let 'em die for another year or so. Maybe I'll change my mind after a few more polls.
  • Murtha - Bring 'em home as soon as practicable (6 months or less).

We've complied some video clips highlighting this week's developments in the politics of Iraq. From Bush's misleading speech to the Democrats fractured positions, it seems that most politicians are more concerned with their political futures than the futures of 150,000 men and women who have become living targets in an un-justified and un-winnable war.

Video in Windows Media format...
Video in QuickTime format...




Sign Senator Debra Bowen's Petition...
By Brad Friedman on 12/2/2005 7:41pm PT  

Debra Bowen, author of the "Bowen Amendment" (SB 370) which mandated "paper trails" for all votes in California, is now running for Secretary of State out here. She blogs about the now-nearly-infamous "Hack Test" that may soon occur on Diebold machines here in California.

She also asks that you sign her email petition demanding current Sec. of State Bruce McPherson thoroughly test such machines before they are certified by the state. I ask you to do so as well!

You don't need to be in California to sign the petition, as far as I know. And since what happens here will soon happen there, I strongly recommend you sign it.

(I recommend this because it's important, not just because she called me her "hero" during a joint appearance earlier today on KRXA 540am. Though that didn't hurt! ;-)

UPDATE 12/5/05: Bowen's office sends this information to clarify one of my statements above:

Just a minor factual error in your post about SB 370 (Bowen) last week. The bill doesn't require voting machines to have paper trails another lawmaker did that in 2004 and it will take effect on 1/1/06. What SB 370 did do is to require elections officials to use those paper trails to conduct the 1% manual hand count required by California law to audit the results of the election and in the case of any recount. If there's a dispute, then the results from the paper ballots are used as the official vote count.

Hope that makes sense.

It does indeed, and my thanks to Bowen's office for sending over the clarification!




By John Gideon on 12/2/2005 5:10pm PT  

Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org

In a stunning reversal the North Carolina State Board of Elections decided to ignore state law and certify three voting systems for use in the state. Keith Long, an advisor to the Board of Elections who was formerly employed by both Diebold and Sequoia, has said that "none of them" could meet the statutory requirement to place their system code in escrow. Instead of rejecting all applications and issuing a new call for bids as required by law, the Board chose to approve all of the applicants. Long also said that it was not necessary to review the source code, even though state law requires it, because the ITA has already done that before federal qualification....

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




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