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0 comments | Friday, June 30, 2006

Greg Palast says similiar tactics to the Katherine Harris schemes of 2000, will be employed to steal votes in Mexico's presidential election.

1 comments | Thursday, June 29, 2006

It occurred to me recently why the Swift Boat-style attacks work against a given candidate. What they do is take a positive (an additional resume item), and reduce it to a negative or non-entity. I wish I could remember whether Kerry challenged and questioned Bush's Texas Air National Guard service (I remember the 527 ad with the guy who served with Bush saying he never saw him with his unit, but that's all), because it also occurs to me that this is the way to defend against these type of egregious attacks. It may not even be important to stand up for a particular candidate's patriotism or military service, but I think what the Dems need to do in response to these kind of attacks, is to levy a counterattack upon their opponent's lack of service (or questionable service as in Bush's case). It's critical to do this in order to not only defend the Democrat's credentials, but to kill two birds with one stone, by offering a defense and an offense all at once.

Jim Webb just provided an excellent example of this in his campaign against George Allen. Allen criticized Webb for voting against the flag burning amendment, and Webb's camp retaliated by saying, "While Jim Webb and others of George Felix Allen Jr.'s generation were fighting for our freedoms and for our symbols of freedom in Vietnam, George Felix Allen Jr. was playing cowboy at a dude ranch in Nevada." In issuing this response, Webb and his team defend Webb's patriotism and respect for the flag, while bringing into question Allen's patriotism and commitment to the country. I'm sure there must be some Democratic strategist out there, that thinks this is impolitic, but I say study it as an example of how to defend against this brand of contemptible attack.

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"Oh me oh my, elections can be hacked in this country", says the Washington Post.

0 comments | Monday, June 26, 2006

Many 9/11 first responders have come down with debilitating illness since those tragic days.

0 comments | Sunday, June 25, 2006

I usually don't follow terrorism arrests very closely (for example 'the shoe bomber', Jose Padilla, etc.), but the story about the men who supposedly planned to blow up the Sears Tower is kind of interesting. Supposedly these guys are not even Muslim (they allegedly follow a religion called the Moorish Science Temple of America), and the government employed an informant who may have goaded the men into dreaming up this scheme in the first place. Additionally, there is a well established pattern of the Justice Department 'souping up' charges against alleged terrorists whose intentions may have been far from what the state claims. There's also, of course, the conspiracy theory of the Republican administration wanting to foment racial tension, by pinning these black men to such a reprehensible action. We should expect the conspiracy buffs to be out in full force for all of these terrorism collars, but with good reason (at least this time) in my view, particularly judging from the facts of this alleged 'foiled scheme'.

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In Kansas and other 'red places' the hard right social issues are antagonizing many long standing Republican party faithful.

0 comments | Saturday, June 24, 2006

Might the Republicans have no plans to expand the voting rights act whatsoever? According to Greg Palast that's precisely what they have in store.

0 comments | Friday, June 23, 2006

It looks like this must have been on last Sunday's 60 minutes. But I hadn't seen any coverage of this before I ran into it. It's just one of those things that brings a smile to your face in the darkest of times.

0 comments | Thursday, June 22, 2006

The falling away of middle class neighborhoods is part and parcel of the deepening divide between rich and poor.

0 comments | Wednesday, June 21, 2006

I've been pretty impressed and suprised with Al Gore pretty much since he endorsed Howard Dean in the 2004 presidential primary. But I can't help wonder if his populist (or liberal) turn are his true colors shining, or a cynical effort to rally the base of the Democratic Party to move him back to the forefront of said party. I can't help but think the latter, considering Hillary Clinton has been energetically staking out the middle since she was elected to the Senate. Gore knowing this and seeing this, would not be foolish to conclude he must rally the left of the party to beat her in the 2008 presidential primary.

Of course, the more he says he's not running for the president in 2008 the more credibility he gains. But then again maybe he just misses the cameras flashing and the media attention, and all of his recent efforts are not simple cold political calculus; but more the stuff of a jilted diva who misses her runaway, than that of a hardened political warrior looking for more campaign fights.

0 comments | Tuesday, June 20, 2006

This is a pretty atypical and interesting interview with Tim Russert, where the host grills him on Skull and Bones, Bohemian Grove, 9/11 Truth, and few other related topics. I don't know if it uncovered anything or is just entertaining, but either way it's worthwhile to listen to.

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Robert Kennedy Jr. explains how he came to the topic of election fraud, and announces forthcoming litigation against the suspected wrongdoers.

0 comments | Monday, June 19, 2006

I really didn't like this article by Alexander Cockburn. Of course the blogosphere has its faults, but to dismiss it as virtually meaningless goes to far. As for his claims about the Plame leak, I don't know that they're wrong, but it would seem intelligence professional Larry Johnson doesn't agree. After reading this piece I've lost a lot of respect for Alexander Cockburn, he comes off as an angry journalist 'mad as hell and he's not going to take it anymore' from a blogosphere that's treading onto his terrain. Even if blogs only contribute intangibles to the public discourse, I think they are worthwhile simply as a tool for energizing people, and creating a fuss when the MSM glosses over a critical event that they aim to black out.

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One of my favorite authors and a real American treasure, Kurt Vonnegut, says he no longer recognizes America thanks to the psychopathic personalities in charge.

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Speculation begins as to whether or not the Bush criminal cabal will pardon one of their own. And also, why was Rove let off the hook?

1 comments | Saturday, June 17, 2006

Without amending the constitution, there may be a way to give the presidency to the popular vote winner.

0 comments | Friday, June 16, 2006

A macular degeneration drug may see its cost raised one hundred times or more.

0 comments | Thursday, June 15, 2006

This is a deeply disturbing article about a report of an MA school that employs electric shock 'therapy' to control its pupils.

0 comments | Wednesday, June 14, 2006

I'm not sure if I would call this movie a horror pic or thriller, but it has elements of both. It also has a very surreal vibe that's omnipresent throughout the film. It features Christine Taylor as Amy, a school teacher whose childhood traumatic experience has blurred her perception of reality. She doesn't seem to be able to distinguish between reality, hallucinations, and dreams.

One day after her boyfriend Nick (Shane Brolly) picks her up from school, they are involved in a fairly severe car accident. Nick is taken off in an ambulance, and Amy is broken up after she takes a taxi to a nearby hospital only to find Nick is not there. Next, she runs into Lucas (the driver that hit Nick's car), and he agrees to help her find Nick, after he informs her his sister (also injured in the crash) was not at the hospital either.

It becomes apparent to us, the viewers, that Nick has been taken to a hospital from hell. Shortly after his admission a patient tries to warn him about the nature of the place, but this man is quickly disappeared by nurses and staff. While Nick is put through torturous conditions, Amy enlists the aid of a clairvoyant student and a local librarian to help her discover where Nick was taken. She finds Nick was sent to a facility that burnt to the ground many years ago. Not long after she makes this revelation she realizes Lucas (Jerry O'Connell) is part of the conspiracy to terrorize her, and she begins an adventure with the living dead, blood drinking nurses, and the ghost of her father to save her true love.

The movie has a good deal of promise, but ultimately isn't able to capitalize on all of its potential. Still, a somewhat original plotline, and genuinely fright inducing footage make it a worthwhile rental for fans of horror, and things that go bump in the night. If blood and guts aren't your cup of tea, don't drink here.

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This is probably one of the best audio clips anywhere on the net (Ann debating Brad from Brad Blog in 2005). With all the Ann Coulter in the news of late, I thought I'd post it. You can clearly tell her 'punditry' style from listening to this. In Coulter world the other side is always making 'accusations' while she is always extrapolating from 'facts'. The Democrats are guilty until proven innocent, while the opposite is true for the Republicans. Lastly, there is not a shred of doubt in her mind (or at least this is the facade she creates) about any of the points she makes, and she argues each one vociferously (often not allowing who she is 'debating' to even finish a single thought).

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Now there's a glimmer of hope for this century, as one deeply reactionary think-tank closes shop. At face value this looks like another hit for Bush, but PNAC are still true believers in that dreaded "Mission Accomplished" banner that Bush so shamelessly promoted on that aircraft carrier (in the phony airmen's garb) back in 2003. They think they've served their purpose, and I guess since their goal is chaos and bloodbath, purpose served.

0 comments | Monday, June 12, 2006

I just watched the video of Kos on Meet the Press, I thought he was pretty articulate and clear for the most part. The one thing I didn't like, though, was how he wouldn't own up to supporting liberal candidates or being part of a liberal movement (I should say he mentioned supporting the progressive principles of the Democratic Party). Although, I don't think it's good for bloggers to be pigeonholed as far left, or irrelevant, I also don't think that the so-called progressive blogosphere should make any pretensions that we are not attempting to move the whole Democratic Party leftward (as talk radio and evangelical Christians have done to move the Republican Party to the right).

Kos didn't make this clear, and if this is not what he is trying to do, then maybe he and the left blogosphere are something different than what I thought they were. It's fine to support a big tent, but I'm not sure what role the DlC and their ilk should have (if any) in this tent. If Kos is not committed to reducing their stranglehold on the party, then I think he's not committed to the right goals. I understand that there are very conservative and right leaning parts of the country where Democrats need to be able to win, but I don't think masquering as something one is not, is the way to electoral victories. I mean with regard to the points he made about Lieberman, Lieberman is not being opposed because he undermines the party, he's being opposed because he's Republican-lite. Lieberman represents Connecticut, so there's no reason to have a Mississippi-style Democrat representing that state. We all know (or should) in the progressive blogosphere that we're not going to get a Howard Dean or Dennis Kucinich representing every state, in every office. But we should be clear and open that the party has run from its progressive values, and where we can get a strong holder of these values, we will struggle mightily to. Where we can't get one we will struggle mightily for whoever represents working people the best.

0 comments | Sunday, June 11, 2006

An elite group of self-appointed (and some elected) world leaders meets in Ottawa.

0 comments | Saturday, June 10, 2006

Even though I'm pro-choice, I'm not sure I agree with this woman that the GOP forced her to have an abortion. Still I empathize with her tribulations, and the right wing is certainly at least partially responsible for some of them. Anyway, for whatever reason I found this to be interesting reading so I thought I would post it, and let others check it out too.

0 comments | Friday, June 09, 2006

The House of Representatives voted 321 to 101 to reject net neutrality. I'm still not sure exactly how the internet is going to work if AT & T, Verizon, and Comcast get their way, but it sure doesn't look good for the little guy.

0 comments | Thursday, June 08, 2006

There's no chicken or the egg dilemma for Michael Berg. He makes no bones about his view that Zarqawi wouldn't have been in Iraq in the first place (to behead his son) if not for Bush's unnecessary war.

0 comments | Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Here's a couple of videos of RFK Jr. on Tucker Carlson's and Wolf Blitzer's shows. Also a couple of articles by Thom Hartmann and Harvey Wasserman and Bob Fitrakis. As of yet Robert Kennedy's article doesn't seem to have been earth shattering, but it's gotten this issue back on the journalistic map.

0 comments | Sunday, June 04, 2006

A secret panel of 100 officials decided on how homeland security funding would be divided up throughout the country.

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Here's an interesting article about a county clerk under fire over his investigation of Diebold's machines. He threatened to resign, and then changed his mind, but county officials now say he must go.

0 comments | Saturday, June 03, 2006

I've been following sports since the mid-80s and I've never before heard of a top level professional team acting this way. I don't want to bash religion and say this is messed up, but it would seem in competitive sports the best performers should be sent out onto the field, court, etc. (whatever the case may be), and not the most devout to a particular faith tradition.

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There's no more surprise in bizarro world (aka Bushworld), but this item really threw me for a loop. It's funny I had just read this article right before it. This type of 'analysis' (hyperbole?) is usually beneath me, but reading these bits was fun.

0 comments | Friday, June 02, 2006

This is a very good video where Greg Palast touches on a number of blacked out stories, that should be critical for the American people to know. For more essential Palast read his article on the Republican dirty deeds in the 2004 Presidential election.

0 comments | Thursday, June 01, 2006

It's out and it's pretty long and in depth. I realized while reading it that just because the article is written by the nephew of a former president, I really don't know how different that is than if Michael Moore had penned it. Other than Jesse Jackson, though, I can think of no one with the notoriety of Robert Kennedy Jr. who has been so willing to seriously and vociferously take on this topic.

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According to Brad Blog sometime today the online edition of Robert Kennedy Jr.'s article on the plot to win Ohio will be available. I'm not sure if it's an abridged version, but the article is supposed to be ten pages. The 4-1-1 on the article is that it delves into most of the major theories about the election that have been circulating, and also supports the contention that Bush unjustly secured the presidency in 2004 (and I don't need to remind you as he did in 2000 as well).