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...Even after 34% of Such Ballots Were Rejected.
County Hears Complaints and Certifies Results.
By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2004 1:46pm PT  

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports today that the Cuyahoga County Election Board certified election results in the county Monday and will now be passing them onto the state for final certificaiton.

Before doing so, the Election Board heard two hours of testimony concerning the 8,552 provisional ballots (34% of the total) which were rejected. Witnesses also testified that due to the questions about these ballots and other "systematic problems", the certification was being completed too quickly.

After the rejected ballots were tossed, remaining provisional ballots showed a 9,242 vote gain in Kerry's margin over Bush in the states largest county.

The Plain Dealer described some of the testimony about the questionable rejections of a number of those provisional ballots as detailed in a three-part analysis by Dr. Norman Robbins of Case Western Reserve University who also served as a volunteer with the Greater Cleveland Voter Registration Coalition:

The first list held names of 32 rejected voters the coalition said it reliably registered and delivered to the elections board. The names never made it onto the rolls or were entered incorrectly, Robbins said.

The second list contained 201 rejected voters who were on county voter registration rolls Aug. 17 but had dropped off by Oct. 26. They may have inadvertently been dropped, perhaps during a September software change, Robbins said. Elections Director Michael Vu said he doubts that happened.

The third list contained 183 voters who were on rolls Oct. 26 but given provisional ballots and rejected as not registered. Another 79 were rejected because they didn't sign the provisional ballot, which Robbins maintains they should never have had to use.

Vu also mentioned that he plans a study of the 6,000 voter registrations delivered by a different Get-Out-The-Vote group after the registration deadline had passed. Voters, in that case, likely went to the polls on Nov. 2nd assuming they were properly registered.

(In regards to that last item --- and really all of them! --- I'd be pleased if someone could explain to me why it is that we do not have same-day voter registration at the polls in the country. At least in the majority of states.)

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By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2004 12:45pm PT  

Perhaps running on recount-juju from their soon-to-be-recounted-Ohio efforts, the heroes (and real American patriots!) of the Green and Libertarian Parties are moving West!

As announced earlier today on Green Party Presidential Candidate David Cobb's website, the two parties have now filed for full recounts in both Nevada and New Mexico!

There has been some strange numbers in both of those states as well as the oft-reported anomalies in Florida, Ohio and elsewhere. So I'll try and do a better job of covering the oddities in NV and NM soon.

In the meantime, feel free to stop by and say thanks for the continuing heroic efforts with a Green Donation at their website, where --- for their current graphic alone --- they deserve a few bucks!

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And the Numbers Still Refuse to Add Up
By Brad Friedman on 11/30/2004 12:30pm PT  

As I mentioned this morning when I beat up on Olbermann a bit, he had a very good report today on his blog about the latest goings on over the weekend in Ohio. He mentions a bit of the potential "news" that Jesse Jackson may or may not have made at a news conference in Columbus on Saturday when he mentioned that "John Kerry supports a full investigation...I talked with John Kerry last night, and he supports the investigation."

And a further nugget, one of several from the report, was this:

Jackson may or may not have also introduced a new rotting fish into the pile of evidence that suggests Ohio did a very lousy job of running an election four weeks ago. "We don't want to be presumptuous, but these numbers in Butler, Clermont, Warren and Hamilton counties are suspicious." Jackson refers in part to what several voters' groups see as the incongruity of an underfunded Democratic candidate for the Ohio Supreme Court, C. Ellen Connally, getting a net 45,000 more votes in Butler County relative to her Republican opponent than Kerry did relative to his. She finished ahead of her party's presidential nominee by 10,000 net votes or more in five Ohio counties; by 5,000 or more in ten others.

It is not unprecedented for a statewide candidate - especially a popular, well-publicized one - to finish "ahead of the ticket." But Connally was a retired African-American judge from Cleveland, and Butler County is as about as far away from Cleveland (on the Indiana border, and 40 miles north of Kentucky) as you can get and still be in Ohio. Moreover, The Cleveland Plain Dealer noted that the Republican candidates in the three Supreme Court races raised 40% more in official campaign funds than did Connally and the other Democrats. The Toledo Blade showed that the fund-raising, and thus visibility, was far more lopsided than even the party documents would suggest: "Citizens for a Strong Ohio, a nonprofit arm of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, raised $3 million to fund TV and radio ads that gave the winners exposure Democrats couldn't match," the newspaper reported on November 4th.

(Note to Mr. Olbermann: It's a blog you're now writing. So please be kind enough to link to the stories you cite so they can be easily and independently perused. Thank you.)

The number mentioned by Jackson above also reminded me of a piece of recent email I received from someone in Warren "Lock Down" County. Here's the relevant passage:

I was in Warren County during the 2000 Gore campaign. We had no money, no supplies and when Gore pulled out 6 weeks ahead of the election our headquarters closed. We did not phone bank or canvass. We did not have a GOTV [Get Out The Vote]. Gore got 28% of the vote.

In 2004 we had two headquarters set up by July. We phone banked, and canvassed, starting in July. We had yard signs, bumper stickers t-shirts, house parties, bonfires, barnstorms, ACT and Moveon.org. We had a booth at every festival over the summer and fall. We caravaned to rallies. When we reached 1000 volunteers we opened a third HQ, and we still had to turn people away because there wasn't enough room. We had our own lawyer and had training sessions for Challenging the Republican Challengers. Our GOTV was from 4 sites and was amazing. Kerry got 28% of the vote after they locked out the press.

Gore got 28% after not even trying and Kerry got 28% after the biggest democratic campaign in Warren County's history.

To verify the general 28% figure used above, here are the Warren County vote totals for 2000 and 2004 directly from the website of Ohio Sec. of State J. Kenneth Blackwell (who --- did I mention? --- was also completely coincidentally the Co-Chair of Ohio's Bush/Cheney Re-Election Committee):

2000 Bush: 48,318 Gore: 19,142
2004 Bush: 66,523 Kerry: 25,399

Yup, nothing to see here...Keep moving, New York Times and all the others...Much Christmas shopping to get done...

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So Stop Beating Yourself!
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2004 11:32pm PT  

Perhaps the singular best expression against Post-Election Pussy-whip that I've seen since November 2nd. Please go read it. Especially if you're one of those namby-pamby, whining, hand-wringing, "oh, where did we go wrong" Democrats who have played into your opposition's abusive victimization culture.

I ain't playing that game (in case you haven't noticed) and neither should you. For any number of reasons as expressed on this blog over the last month.

Here's the closer, but I really recommend you read the whole thing:

But we absolutely must dispense with the notion that we are weak, godless, cowardly, disorganized, crazy, too liberal, naive, amoral, “loose”, irrelevant, outmoded, stupid and soon to be extinct. We have the mandate of the world to back us, and the legacy of oppressed people throughout history.

Even if you do everything right, they'll hit you anyway. Look at the poor souls who voted for this nonsense. They are working for six dollars an hour if they are working at all, their children are dying overseas and suffering from lack of health care and a depleted environment and a shoddy education. And they don't even know they are being hit.

Help stop the abuse. Stop playing the victim. If that's what you're doing. (Not that any true BRAD BLOG readers would ever fall into such a pathetic little trap of a mindset. Leave that to the pussies over at the DNC...and get back to work! We've got a democracy to save here dammit!)

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AP Updates the Story in Ohio...
Fox Censors It.
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2004 7:32pm PT  

"You can't be chairman of the Bush campaign and then be the chief umpire in the seventh game of the World Series."
-- Jessie Jackson, Columbus, Ohio, 11/28/04.

First off (with apologies to Bill Maher)...NEW RULE: Media accounts referring to Ohio's Republican Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, the man responsible for ensuring a fair election and accurate vote count in Ohio, must always be identified as well by his other job description --- Co-Chair of the Ohio Bush/Cheney '04 Re-Election Campaign.

Any story or writer that refers to the currently and appropriately besieged Mr. Blackwell at this point, without pointing out that not-trivial fact is being misleading in their coverage. I would include myself guilty as well at that and will endeavor to improve in the future.

That said, AP refreshingly updates its Ohio coverage today with an update on Jesse Jackson's rallies there over the weekend along with other late related items from the Buckeye State. That report, surprisingly enough, is being re-run by the bulk of the major media outlets! Good for them!

But look closer.

The same AP story is re-run under the headings "Challenges to Ohio ballots mount" in the version at CNN.com, "Nearly a Month Later, Ohio Fight Goes On" at The NY Times website, at MyWay.com, and at Yahoo. And finally, "Ohio Election Still Contested" at the Fox News website.

Guess which one of those sites alone decided to leaves out the critical final paragraphs that referred to Blackwell as Ohio's co-chair for Bush/Cheney!

All but the Fox News versions include these last four telling grafs:

Jackson said Blackwell, who along with other statewide GOP leaders was a co-chairman of Bush's re-election campaign in Ohio, should step down from overseeing the election process.

"You can't be chairman of the Bush campaign and then be the chief umpire in the seventh game of the World Series," Jackson said.

Blackwell's office responded by saying the state has a "bipartisan and transparent system that provides valuable checks and balances."

"The problem seems to be that Rev. Jackson's candidate didn't win," said Carlo LoParo, a Blackwell spokesman.

Over at Fox News, however, their online reprint of the exact same AP story conveniently drops those final paragraphs from the story!

Clearly it wasn't a space issue. There are no other stories on the webpage, so an extra few paragraphs wouldn't have cost anything or have otherwise been a problem.

It was --- rather obviously, even for Fox --- an editorial issue from the continually Republican "Fair and Balanced" Fox News Network. How pathetic.

If you're interested in the substance of the story itself --- and I hope you are --- please click on one of the more reliable of the link options I've given you above.

UPDATE: The headline of CNN's posting of the AP story changed last night at some point from the "Challenges to Ohio ballots mount" that I previously noted, to "Activists continue to challenge Ohio ballots". You "activists" out there are welcome to make of that what you might.

UNRELATED SIDE NOTE: This is the 1000th BRAD BLOG item posted since starting up on Jan. 24, 2004. Not sure why that fact matters, but I thought I'd mention it. My fingers are not yet tired.

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'Bloggerman' Blows the Call on Wayne Madsen
Skepticism is good. Sloppy journalism is bad. No matter who commits it.
By Brad Friedman on 11/29/2004 3:31pm PT  

I'm happy to admit, along with everyone else on this particular beat these days, that we're all glad to see Keith Olbermann, currently the virtual-sole voice in the corporate media, willing to seriously follow the troubling stories of voting irregularities in Election 2004.

That said, while he's been doing a fine job of helping to keep the story out there, I believe he has largely screwed the proverbial pooch when it came to his blog story on Saturday in regards to the reporting of Wayne Madsen.

Madsen, "a self-styled investigative journalist", as self-styled investigative journalist Olbermann referred to him, has claimed in two different articles, so far, (Here, then with a few more specifics here) that there was an extensive and sophisticated vote rigging operation at play in Election '04.

The operation, Madsen alleges, was funded by Saudi and other overseas interests via a sophisticated web of Bush-friendly banks, trusts, holding companies and corporations. The starting point for all of this, he reports, is a $29.6 million check of which Madsen claimed to have been given a copy.

On the ground, the scheme is reported to have included the use of retired FBI agents posing as active FBI and/or Homeland Security Dept. agents in Ohio, Florida, Texas and California supplying false security/terror-related information to local election officials leading to "lock downs". These "lock downs" supposedly then allowed the "agents" and/or cyber technicians unfettered access to central tabulating computers where vote tallies could then be goosed to achieve the desired outcome. The goal in Ohio and Florida, of course, being to take the states for Bush and in Texas and California to prop up Bush's number to receive the popular majority that would supply the "broad national mandate" you have likely heard the Bush Administration wildly overstating at various times in the last four weeks or so.

Despite having been sent many notes about Madsen's articles over the last several days, I have yet to mention them on this blog at all until now. I've been attempting to get independent verification or confirmation for such stories before I add them to what I consider to be a rather solid body of evidence here indicating "electile dysfunction" of various possible magnitudes. In other words, I've been trying to confirm these stories as well as possible before reporting on them here, since so many have come to use this blog as a trusted reference source over the weeks since November 2nd.

Madsen's public reporting so far had, to my mind, contained a few too many vagaries as of yet to be added to the preponderance of evidence being compiled here. At least not until I was able to either get more specifics, or speak to him directly with some of my questions. That's precisely what I did yesterday in a thirty-minute or so phone call...

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

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Joins NY Times in Finally Going on Public Record!
Though also remain inexplicably allergic to investigating Election 2004!
By Brad Friedman on 11/28/2004 3:06pm PT  

As The NY Times finally did yesterday, Newsweek follows in-step today by covering the problems with E-Voting and it's lack of paper audit trails, etc.

It's encouraging for the much-needed election reform movement that such articles are finally making their way into the Corporate Media. Yet I find it still somewhat beguiling that these organizations are finally willing to report on the lack of verifiability at the root of our country's democracy, how easy it may be to tamper with the results and how the end result is a lack of confidence in the outcome --- Yet with all of those acknowledged problems, the same Corporate Media still proves wholly unwilling to actually investigate the enormous body of data recently gathered via such troubling means a mere three weeks ago!

In other words, they acknowledge that possible trouble exists with the technology, but they are seemingly unwilling to expend any resources to determine if such trouble did exist in the November 2nd election! Newsweek even goes so far as to title their piece "Four More Years to Finally Get It Right". As if to say, nothing to see last November 2nd, but let's look ahead to '08.

In any case, here's a few key grafs from Steven Levy's Newsweek piece.

On those of us who have been dubious about what went on in Election 2004 and our refusal to take the questionable results lying down...

Is it time for these folks to shut up already?

To the contrary, their curmudgeonry serves an important purpose. The nature of the ATM-style voting terminals used by a third of the country in 2004—and set to increase over the next few cycles—doesn't merely invite controversy. It makes doubt a permanent part of the process. The problem is that the new devices have no way of proving to the voter that his or her choice is reported in the final tally. Researchers have demonstrated that the machines themselves are not foolproof—and, worse, are potentially susceptible to vote-stealing schemes.

Really? Glad you've admitted that, but wouldn't you do even better by investigating if that may have actually happened?!

And then Levy closes by pointing to the concerns that those of us pushing for Election Reform have been pointing out for a while. He aptly mentions that the concerns are not only with E-Voting itself and finishes (ironically enough) by spanking those who don't yet seem to get it...

Of course, verification is only one component of voting reform. Why is it that the companies that make the machines are run by executives who favor one party over another? For that matter, why is it that the so-called referees of the process are often partisan politicians themselves? When tackling the problems of provisional ballots, supplying precincts with sufficient voting machines and handling recounts, wouldn't it make sense to have neutral parties in charge?

After the 2000 debacle, one might have expected that our leaders would move mountains to make the next election an exemplary one. The fact that we cannot convince the doubters proves otherwise. Don't call them paranoid, but recognize their passion for fairly run, accurately tabulated elections. If only their zeal were more contagious.

The sentiment is much appreciated. But what Levy fails to point out here is that the "2000 debacle" is what put these "leaders" in power in the first place! It's small wonder then that they'd wish to tamper with that easily-gamed system.

Levy quickly mentions "legislation that would have mandated such protections in 2004 was bottled up in Congress," but he conveniently or lazily doesn't mention that the "bottled up" legislation was "bottled up" by the Republican leadership in both the House and Senate (specifically by Hastert and Delay) who wouldn't allow these bills to even come up for a vote!

But let's not hold any actual feet to any actual fires. We wouldn't want to piss off our well-earned sources now would we?

Both this piece and the Times piece I pointed out yesterday are indeed encouraging and bode well (hopefully) for reform in '06 and/or '08 to a certain extent. But one would have thought the even more-obviously outrageous 2000 election would have kept us from being where we are today at all.

So while the emerging willingness of these Corporate Media outlets to finally acknowledge that these issues even exist, they would be far better off investigating whether any of the items they warn about actually occurred in this go-round. There's certainly ample evidence to look into if they decide to actually leave their offices and look into it!

Without attention and hard news reporting on the matter from such outlets, I see no reason why Election '04 will offer any greater incentive to force lawmakers to reform the system. If the well-reported-upon debacle of 2000 didn't do the trick, why would the picture the media has now succeeded in painting of a "relatively trouble-free" 2004 election encourage anybody to change anything?!...Especially with even more of those lawmakers --- the ones who were able to gain from the dubious system --- now entrenching themselves in the same halls of power that decided not to correct the problems last time?!

CONTACTS...(Please be polite!)
Steven Levy, Newsweek Columnist: steven.levy@newsweek.com
Mark Whitaker, Newsweek Editor: mark.whitaker@newsweek.com
...Or, TheBradBlog@cville.com&Subject=Please Investigate and Report On Voter Irregularity, Mistabulation and Fraud in Election 2004!">Email both at the same time with a BCC to me so I can track numbers!

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But, of course, not enough concerns to actually investigate them.
By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2004 2:41pm PT  

The New York Times deems to recognize that it just might not be such a great idea to rely on so many untested electronic voting machines created by private, partisan companies using uninspected software with no way to validate the results.

Appropriately enough for The Times their James Fallows column is found on their "Business Section - YOUR MONEY - TECHNO FILES" page of tomorrow's paper.

Not much new offered, just the fact itself that The Times is willing to talk about these issues at all is what's most notable here. A sample...

Four years ago, about one-eighth of all votes for president were cast electronically. This year, nearly a third were. How the system would handle that large increase in scale could not have been tested until the presidency was at stake. Worse, most of the electronic systems are not accountable. When I voted this year, I fed my paper ballot through an optical scanner and into a storage box. In a recount, those ballots could have been pulled out and run through the scanner again. If I had used the touch screen, I would have had no tangible evidence that the vote counted or was recountable.

Is that a problem because the chief executive of Diebold, the largest maker of such systems, is a prominent Republican partisan? No. It's a problem because it defies the check-and-balance logic built into every other electronic transaction.

Very good. Now what are you willing to do, NY Times, to check-and-balance what these computers did not in this year's election? Anything more than simply talking about it?

managing-editor@nytimes.com; executive-editor@nytimes.com; national@nytimes.com; editorial@nytimes.com; oped@nytimes.com; public@nytimes.com; letters@nytimes.com; magazine@nytimes.com; QandA@nytimes.com; washington@nytimes.com; TheBradBlog@cville.com?Subject=Investigate and Report On Voter Irregularity, Mistabulation and Fraud NOW!">Click here to send an email asking them to do so if you haven't already!

(Thanks Desi for the link!)

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And Another Voyage Through CrazyWorld...
By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2004 1:51pm PT  

"There's just a lot of allegations of vote fraud that placed their election, the validity of their elections, in doubt."
-- George W. Bush, 11/26/04. In regard to the U.S. position of not recognizing the validity of Ukraine's recent election.

If anyone sees a guy in a big top hat run by screaming "I'm late! I'm late! I'm late!" do not be alarmed.

(See Colin Powell's equally appalling ironic quote from a few days ago here on the same topic.)

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A 'Floodtide' of Evidence Emerges
By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2004 1:33pm PT  

I dare you to read this entire Columbus Free Press article and then explain to me why Ohio's election shouldn't be entirely invalidated and re-held!

Here's the first graf...

COLUMBUS --- A floodtide of evidence of questionable practices in the 2004 election is mounting fast against Ohio Republican Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell and Republican Franklin County Board of Elections (BOE) Director Matt Damschroder. New transcriptions of sworn voter testimony, presented below for the first time, confirm growing suspicions of widespread use of rigged machines. Voters experienced hostility from poll workers, refusal of Republican election officials to follow the law, and discriminatory manipulation of voting machine placement, driving significant numbers of Democrats away from the polls.

Now go read the rest and get back to me.

(Hat tip to John of Crooks & Liars for the link!)

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Voters' Rights Group Claims Ballots Incorrectly Discarded
Some for simplying being left at the wrong table in the right building!
By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2004 12:48pm PT  

There have been many reports since Nov. 2nd, of provisional ballots in Ohio being rejected because they were cast at the "wrong precinct" after Ohio Sec. of State J. Kenneth Blackwell issued a directive requiring provisionals be cast at the voters' own precinct.

In many of those cases, where polling places had been shut down and consolidated in urban minority areas to make way for E-Voting --- which was then cancelled at the last minute, even though the polling places remained closed and consolidated --- several different precincts were combined into a single polling place.

Where that took place, there were different tables that represented the different precincts. Many poll workers, however, were reportedly unaware that provisional ballots had to be cast at the voters specific "precinct" (or in such cases, table) which meant that some voters who were forced to fill out a provisional were told they could simply leave the ballot at "Table B", when their actual precinct was at "Table A" --- in the same building!

Such ballots are now being rejected for having been cast at the "wrong precinct"!

A Cincinnati Post report today describes how that happened in just one of Ohio's counties:

About 14,000 provisional ballots were cast in [Hamilton County], according to elections director John Williams.
...
[A]bout 1,100 were declared invalid because they were cast at the wrong precinct, according to Tim Burke, chairman of the Hamilton County Board of Elections.

Burke...said about 400 of those votes came from polling places that housed more than one precinct.

"Four hundred voters were in the right polling place, but not at the right table," Burke said. "It is my opinion that they should be counted."

A lawsuit has now been filed in one county (Cuyahoga) against Blackwell and the State of Ohio arguing that such rejected provisional ballots should indeed be counted in Ohio!

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer:

A national nonpartisan voters' rights group has asked an Ohio court to reinstate nearly 8,000 provisional ballots ruled invalid in Cuyahoga County.

The People for the American Way Foundation filed suit Friday in the 8th Ohio District Court of Appeals in Cleveland against Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell and the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections.
...
Cuyahoga had 24,472 provisional ballots cast in the Nov. 2 election, and 8,099 - fully a third - were invalidated.
...
The action charges that poll workers and precinct judges "were deeply confused" about how to handle the provisional ballots and that Blackwell failed to provide clear instructions.

People for the American Way wants the court to order Blackwell and the county elections board to check electronic voter-registration rolls against paper registration records, to notify each voter who cast an invalidated ballot why it was rejected, and to give that person a way to contest the invalidation.

The suit also wants ballots counted if voters cast them in the wrong places and officials failed to send them to the right polling places.

Voter disenfranchisment in America. Just another topic worth less coverage from our major news media than shoppers buying DVD players at Wal-Mart on the day after Thanksgiving.

Make no mistake, the cash register is the real voting booth these days in these dis-United States of America.

UPDATE: Columbus Free Press has an affidavit from Neil F. Schoenwetter, Jr., a Democratic "challenger" at the polls on Election Day in Ohio, who gives specific details of Election Supervisors and Poll Workers instructing voters that "ANY PROVISIONAL BALLOT THAT WAS CAST IN THE COUNTY WOULD BE COUNTED; THEY DID NOT HAVE TO BE CAST AT ANY PARTICULAR PRECINCT." See the link for the entire sworn account.

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Official Report Charges 'US Losing War of Ideas' in Islamic World!
By Brad Friedman on 11/27/2004 12:03pm PT  

A Pentagon-appointed advisory panel has issued a harsh report on America's failing middle-east policies and "urged the creation of a 'strategic communication' apparatus within the White House and an overhaul of public diplomacy, public affairs and information dissemination efforts by the Pentagon and State Department."

The report, made available by the Pentagon just weeks after the U.S. Election, charges what so many of us have been charging for some time; namely, that the "US is losing the war of ideas" in the middle-east and the Islamic world in general. From The Australian's article on the report:

THE US is losing the war of ideas in the Islamic world, failing to elucidate its policies to Muslims wary of American intentions and "self-serving hypocrisy", a Pentagon advisory panel has found.
...
"If we really want to see the Muslim world as a whole and the Arabic-speaking world in particular move more toward our understanding of 'moderation' and 'tolerance,' we must reassure Muslims that this does not mean that they must submit to the American way," the report stated.

The toughly worded report said that while America's efforts to explain its policies have failed, improved public relations efforts cannot sell faulty policies.

"Muslims do not hate our freedom, but rather they hate our policies," the panel stated.
...
"Thus, when American public diplomacy talks about bringing democracy to Islamic societies, this is seen as no more than self-serving hypocrisy," the report stated.
...
US intervention in the Muslim world, including wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, had actually elevated the stature of radical enemies of America, the report stated.

"In the eyes of Muslims, American occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq has not led to democracy there, but only more chaos and suffering. US actions appear in contrast to be motivated by ulterior motives, and deliberately controlled in order to best serve American national interests at the expense of truly Muslim self-determination," the report stated.
...
"American efforts... may also have achieved the opposite of what they intended," the report said.

Duh...do ya think?!

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By Brad Friedman on 11/26/2004 5:38pm PT  

Warren Mitofsky, head of the consortium which gathers and publishes the exit poll data for all of the major networks and newspapers, has been claiming of late that those who relied on and/or published his exit polling data during the course of Election Day were mistaken to have done so. The reason being, Mitofsky recently emailed Keith Olbermann at MSNBC, is because those raw numbers, leaking out when they did, are more aptly compared to "the score at half time at a football game" rather than information to be used to judge against the final election results.

I believe Joseph Cannon gets it exactly right, however, when he responded yesterday with this thought:

No, Mr. Mitofsky. They should be compared to the score at half time at fifty football games. Better analogy: Fifty tosses of a coin. Error should skew in both directions; if the coin keeps coming up heads, something is wrong with that coin.

Of course, without the raw data from the exit pollsters, everyone is largely guessing. So I will associate myself with pollster John Zogby's sage demand on MSNBC last Wednesday wherein he said, "I think that the gentlemen who are responsible for the exit polls should be fully transparent, release their data, discuss their methodology. Let us see what exactly it is that happened, and why it happened...I'll take this opportunity right now to say I think that it's in the interest of healing this country and restoring some unity to this country for us to have a thorough investigation of what happened both to the election and with the exit polls."

Hear, hear, Mr. Zogby!...

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

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Or, Democracies That Live in Glass Houses
PRAVDA Tells U.S. to 'Like It or Lump It' in regards to Ukraine Election
By Brad Friedman on 11/26/2004 3:19pm PT  

A week or two ago I wrote an item here entitled "Why It Matters" which pointed to an article in the Russian PRAVDA Online discussing our election irregularities here in greater detail than we've seen from the bulk of the United States' own media.

My point in highlighting the article was that the world is watching carefullly what happens in the United States, perhaps now more than ever as we are attempting --- as claimed by the Administration, anyway --- to spread democracy around the globe.

Apparently I was more prescient that even I had imagined at the time in pointing out that particular article. Take a look at what PRAVDA Online now has to say about the U.S.'s recent objections to the election results in Ukraine:

Where was this condemnation during the appalling electoral fraud committed in the USA on November 2nd?
...
Mention of "electoral fraud and abuse" from an American observer was risible, after the two fiascos in the USA which saw the most flagrant examples of vote-rigging and electoral fixing in modern history.
...
When the Republican Party deploys electronic voting machines bought from Republican Party fundraisers who promised before the election to help the President to win, the OSCE [Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe] observers describe it as localised and insignificant incidents. However, when the incompent stooge Yushchenko fails to win in the Ukraine, it is fraud.
...
If the West has a problem with that - and it appears that "international law" is a concept with which certain countries have a problem to understand these days - too bad.

In plain English, you can like it - or lump it.

Any other questions?

If we can't get democracy right in our own country or even show an interest in the fairness and transparency of same by the bulk of our controlling governmental bodies and corporate media, then one can hardly expect the rest of the world to follow an example which we're not particularly interested in applying to our own democracy.

Expect the international influence of the American Empire to continue to crumble in country after country, region after region as we here at home continue to fiddle even while worldwide democracy burns as a direct result of our own apathy for maintaining the health of our own once-fervently held democratic principles.

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The BRAD BLOG Replies Back...With Fervor.
By Brad Friedman on 11/25/2004 12:19pm PT  

Apparently the number of Emails The NY Times has been receiving, spurred in no small part by our coverage here of their lack of, or otherwise condescending coverage of the hundreds of reports of "irregularities" in Election 2004 has caused a "flood" to their inboxes.

Or so says the New York Times "Public Editor" Daniel Okrent who has chosen to use his Times-supplied "blog space" to speak to that "flood" in his response posted here.

That response was both tepid, apologetic, and gave no real answers to the many concerns expressed by so many of you who have sent letters. Neither did he address any of the "15 Unanswered Questions" I compiled for them, and sent directly to Mr. Okrent's "flooded mailbox".

And so, I have now replied via Email to Mr. Okrent in regards to his reponse. I urge you to do the same. Here is my Email to him...

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

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