Guest blogged by David Edwards
Why actually improve National Security when you can buy just as many votes with effective marketing?
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...
|MORE BRAD BLOG 'SPECIAL COVERAGE' PAGES...|
Guest blogged by David Edwards
Why actually improve National Security when you can buy just as many votes with effective marketing?
CommonDreams has now voiced their concerns over regressive and restrictive voting rights legislation in GA, OH, and PA. Newspapers in PA are now editorializing against the VoterID bill that will reduce turnout and ensure some voters do not vote. Officials in Vanderburgh Co., IN are now talking about a probe into why 46 machines sat unused in a warehouse in Nov. 2004 while voters waited in long lines to vote....
Yes, that's right. The War on Iraq is now costing the United States $100,000 of your tax dollars per minute:
Most of the new money would pay for the war in Iraq, which has cost an estimated $250 billion since the U.S. invasion in March 2003.
The additional spending, along with other war funding the Bush administration will seek separately in its regular budget next week, would push the price tag for combat and nation-building since Sept. 11, 2001, to nearly a half-trillion dollars, approaching the inflation-adjusted cost of the 13-year Vietnam War.
No large-scale reconstruction projects are included in the spending, officials said.
Currently, the Defense Department says it is spending about $4.5 billion a month on the conflict in Iraq, or about $100,000 per minute.
By way of contrast, you may remember what Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told Congress about the cost of the war on March 27, 2003: "We're dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon."
And before that, while the Administration was ensuring we'd go to war with Iraq no matter what, Rummy said on January 19, 2003: "The Office of Management and Budget, has come up come up with a number that's something under $50 billion for the cost. How much of that would be the U.S. burden, and how much would be other countries, is an open question."
Here's a few other similar statements from members of the most failed Administration in the history of the United States.
Josh says (he said it yesterday, but I'm just getting caught up with it today)...
In court, his lawyer, John Durkin, said that when Raymond was executing the election tampering plot he "was acting at the behest of the state and federal Republican parties (italics included)."
The call came from the campaign committee run by Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN). Jim Tobin, who's now appealing his conviction, was the guy who worked for Frist's committee, the NRSC.
This investigation ain't over.
For more info on that Republican Election Phone-Jamming case, see this previous coverage, as well as this report for details on the RNC itself footing the legal bills for Tobin and friends. For still more, search BRAD BLOG for the word "Tobin".
VoteTrustUSA has provided us an excellent article on effective testing of election software. We also have an article on HR-4666, the House bill to slow up the implementation of HAVA. Is the state of Florida manipulating the certification of AutoMARK to ensure it is not used in the state? (February 3, 1959 "The Day The Music Died")...
Page one at WaPo today describes an inquiry, now underway, of the NASA Inspector General's failure to investigate several charges and his retaliation against whistle-blowers.
Written complaints and supporting documents from at least 16 people have been given to investigators. They allege that Cobb, appointed by President Bush in 2002, suppressed investigations of wrongdoing within NASA, and abused and penalized his own investigators when they persisted in raising concerns.
The complaints are being reviewed by the Integrity Committee of the President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency. The complaints describe efforts by Cobb to shut down or ignore investigations on issues such as a malfunctioning self-destruct procedure during a space shuttle launch at the Kennedy Space Center, and the theft of an estimated $1.9 billion worth of data on rocket engines from NASA computers.
IG auditor Carroll Tom Hassell described how "a person in a South American country" over three days in late 2002 logged into the Marshall Space Flight Center's supposedly secure computer system, stole space shuttle data valued at $1.9 billion and shipped it to a third country.
I have several meetings today, so I can't get into too much detail for the moment. But for those not familiar with Clint Curtis, among his allegations is that Yang Enterprises Inc. (YEI), his employer back in 2000 in Florida, was spying on NASA via their contracts with the space agency. He alleges, in a sworn affidavit, that YEI inserted "wire-tapping modules" into software they were contracted to write for NASA, and that an undocumented Chinese worker, Hai Lin "Henry" Nee, was in charge of the programming that pulled it all off.
Nee was charged, some years later, for attempting to send Hellfire anti-tank missile chips from YEI to China, eventually pleading guilty.
Curtis took his charges to Raymond Lemme, from the Inspector General's office in Tallahassee, FL. Lemme allegedly told Curtis that his investigation had traced these matters "all the way to the top"; two weeks later, Lemme was found dead in a Valdosta, GA hotel room. The police ruled the case a suicide, but several inconsistencies in their report remain unexplained, including the claim that the photos taken at the crime scene could not be developed --- those same photos were later found, and published, here at BRAD BLOG.
At the time, the general counsel and registered lobbyist for YEI was U.S. Congressman Tom Feeney (R-FL), who also served as the in-coming Speaker of the Florida Legislature, and who is most famous for his claim during the 2000 Florida Election Debacle that the electoral votes in Florida would be delivered to George W. Bush no matter what the Florida Supreme Court had to say about it. Feeney --- who continues to receive money from YEI and their attorneys, and houses his campaign headquarters in their building in Oviedo, FL --- now sits on the U.S. House Judiciary Committee. Feeney also ran as Jeb Bush's running-mate for Governor in 1994, and has most recently been implicated in the Abramoff/Tom DeLay scandals for participating in one of the now-infamous lobbyist-paid golf trips to St. Andrews, Scotland.
And, oh yes, Curtis, a computer programmer --- who was a Republican at the time --- claims that Feeney asked him, while they both worked for YEI at the time, to create a touch-screen vote-rigging software prototype. But you'll have to read up on the quick summary of Curtis' story to catch up on that part of it.
We'll be keeping our eye on this one, naturally...
And, as usual, he was right!
Hopefully this will be my last words on the disgraceful incident involving the arrest, removal and detention of Cindy Sheehan, who gave the life of her child in defense of this country, just prior to Tuesday's State of the Union address.
This latest canary-in-the-coalmine story made the front page of WaPo today, and reveals quite clearly both the Media's and at least one Republican's bias against those who do not agree with the George W. Bush Administration...As well as the disregard for our Constitutional Freedom of Speech. At least by the Republican.
The WaPo article, written by Petula Dvorak, first reveals the pro-administration media bias and/or their consistent inability to fairly report on an unfair situation. Note this early graf:
In other words it's implied here that Beverly Young, the wife of Congressman Bill Young (R-FL), who was removed from gallery at some point during Bush's speech wasn't arrested because, unlike Sheehan, it didn't come to that. Mrs. Young must have been polite (she wasn't) requiring no arrest, while Sheehan must have been unruly (she wasn't) requiring arrest and hours of detention.
The fact of the matter, however, as clearly explained later in the article, is that Mrs. Young was never threatened with arrest at all, unlike Sheehan who was frog-marched out of the chamber and handcuffed from the get-go. And that was even with Sheehan being polite in every respect, by all accounts of the story, while Young was abusive towards the cops, calling them "idiots" (that night, and even later after their eventually apology) and, as WaPo points out, "Witnesses said her words for him were much saltier the night before."
As I mentioned yesterday in my article on "Cindy Sheehan's Unequal Treatment Under the Law", the Wingnuts who've been busy trying to equate Sheehan's treatment with Young's ("They were both asked to leave, so clearly there's no political bias here!" say the apologists) have also overlooked the fact that Young was asked to leave much later. After the cops already had an embarrassing situation on their hands. As WaPo reported...
She said she angrily challenged officers to explain what law she had violated, and they threatened arrest.
She said an officer mentioned that Sheehan was removed earlier and therefore "it was kind of only fair" that she be asked to leave, too.
It's clear that Mrs. Young would have been left alone with her "Support the Troops" T-shirt and would not have been asked to leave, had not the cops already had the Sheehan situation on their hands, and needed to cover their asses.
Finally then, it's revealed in the story that the hypocritical Congressman Young himself would likely not have said a word about Sheehan's treatment (which was much worse than his wife's) had his wife not been asked to leave. He admits as much:
So the woman actually arrested, detained, and perhaps even "roughed up" was no problem for Young's "standards" because he "totally disagree[s] with everything she stands for."
Welcome to the amazingly slipperly slope...as it gets still slipperier and slopier every damn day in this country.
Still unclear? See how Judge Anthony Napolitano --- who defended Sheehan on Fox News, ostensibly, once it became clear she broke no rules or laws --- reportedly contrasted Young's T-shirt with Sheehan's. Young's, said Napolitano, in regard to the "Support the Troops" T-shirt, was "a Republican T-shirt."
Fox happily took up the meme on their website:
The "opposite message"?!
It's a dangerous fucking line we're crossing here in America 2006. Pay attention.
ALSO... It's not just the MSM who get the story wrong in their rush for political points. Blogger Glenn Greenwald reports on tons of Wingnut bloggers who couldn't wait to lie about the Sheehan story to their readers...and then refuse to correct themselves after it was proven how incredibly wrong they were.
In Vanderburgh County, IN voters were forced to stand in long lines in Nov. 2004 and some walked away in frustration. The county council has been investigating prior to spending the money to buy more machines. They've now found that 46 machines were left in storage rather than to be used. PA has begun the legislative actions to keep voters from voting. On the national scene HR-550 has picked up another co-sponsor and new legislation that will slow down HAVA has been filed....
Last October we wrote about Daniel Borchers, the Conservative Christian iconoclast founder of Citizens for Conservative Principles, editor of the Brother Watch newsletter, founder of Coulter Watch and producer of an upcoming Anti-Coulter documentary being prepared for release next Summer to coincide with the release of Ann Coulter's next book.
We also wrote about him for the January issue of Mother Jones in an article titled "Counter Coulter".
Along with our original piece here at BRAD BLOG on Borchers, we released the first of a series of PowerPoint Presentations created by Borchers, and converted into video for easy viewing online.
The first in the series was entitled "The Gospel of Ann" and exposed her many decidely anti-Christian statements and behavior in contrast to her claims of being a devout, faithful Christian (That presentation can be seen here).
Today, Borchers has released the second in the series, this one entitled "Not Fit to Live! - Ann Coulter's Gospel of Life".
The video presentation, released exclusively here at BRAD BLOG, documents Coulter's seeming obsession with death and destruction to any and all perceived as an enemy, political or otherwise...
An earlier presentation by the Conservative group, on Coulter's hypocritical claims of a Christian faith, was released at BRAD BLOG last October.
The next in the series, produced by Dan Borchers (who we also wrote about in January's Mother Jones) will cover Coulter's obsession with destroying, assassinating and otherwise disposing of her perceived enemies. Political or otherwise. By any means necessary.
Coming on Thursday to a BRAD BLOG near you...
UPDATE: Here ya go...
The headline at RAW STORY right now:
Yes. Not kidding!
UPDATE: This just in from AP, perhaps explaining the voting irregularities [emphasis added]...
FURTHER UPDATE: Even Kos (who won't talk about Election Fraud in 2004) gets the irony here. Says, "House GOP conducts elections like Florida 2000"
LATE UPDATE: Josh Marshall has a few more deets...
There may finally be some progress made in Maricopa County, AZ where the FBI has stepped in and subpoenaed to get control of the ballots from Nov. 2004. These ballots may show if there was massive election fraud or voting machine failure. A vvpat bill has been proposed for the GA Senate. Congressman Fitzpatrick (PA) has filed a new bill, HR-4666, that will allow states until Nov. 2006 to comply fully with HAVA without penalty. This bill has bi-partisan support. I also need to clarify a statement I made in the preamble to yesterday's DVN; I reported that Vote-PAD had gotten a favorable opinion from the DoJ. In fact, the DoJ did not give an opinion one way or another they just made it clear that they saw nothing to stop Wisconsin from using it....
Vote-PAD, the simple plastic and paper voting device meant to assist voters with disabilities and provide a countable paper ballot as an alternative to the expensive, insecure, un-recountable, hackable Electronic Voting Machines made by companies such as Diebold and ES&S, has just been approved for use by the state of Wisconsin!
According to a just-issued press release (posted in full at the bottom of this item), Vote-PAD, which derives it's name from "Voting-on-Paper Assistive Device", is announcing that the Wisconsin State Elections Board has approved the device for use in the state after conferring with attorneys at the U.S. Department of Justice.
Recently we reported on the Vote-PAD, describing it as a simple, non-electronic voting device that "could save American democracy." The company had just announced their first contract with Yolo County, California at the time. The new announcement by Wisconsin represents the first full state to announce their approval of the Vote-PAD device for use by disabled voters.
The Wisconsin announcement notably includes information on clearance for use of the device after consultations with attorneys in the "Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice," according to an email obtained by The BRAD BLOG. The email was written by the executive director of Wisconsin's State Elections Board, and will likely kick national interest in Vote-PAD into high gear...
Guest Blogged by John Gideon
As we reported in January the Maricopa County, AZ elections officials and county attorney have done all they can do to keep anyone from looking at the ballots from the Nov. 2004 District 20 race. As you may recall, the matter came into question after a recount in a Republican Primary race revealed 439 ballots magically appearing and which resulted in the final results of the election being changed. The county has even gone to the lengths of refusing subpoenas from a State Senate committee to provide the ballots, even after an expert was brought in to examine the voting machinery and found the optical scan counters completely out of calibration. The expert said that examination of the ballots was the only way to determine what had actually happened.
Today The Arizona Republic announced that the FBI has now stepped in and provided a court ordered subpoena for those ballots.
The paper reports:
On Tuesday, he got one.
"We were just elated," Schweikert said of the moment his secretary called him to say that there were FBI agents waiting for him in his office. "I know it sounds odd to be elated to receive a subpoena, but it was what we'd all been asking for."
It seems odd that Schweikert would refuse to obey a subpoena from the state legislature and then be delighted when he got a subpoena for the same thing from the FBI. We are just going to have to continue to watch this extraordinary case and see where the twisted road continues to lead us.
A Few Great Blogs
· Baghdad Burning
· Brilliant at Breakfast
· Crooks and Liars
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· Fired Up! Missouri
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· Jesus' General
· Juan Cole
· Washington Monthly
· Media Matters
· Nashua Advocate
· Oliver Willis
· RAW STORY
· Sanoma State's
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· Bill Deore
· Bob Gorrell
· Cagle's Index
· Chan Lowe
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· Non Sequitur
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