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Dan Rather Edition
By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 8:54pm PT  

By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 8:04pm PT  

A rather brilliant piece from Juan Coles...I'll give ya the first few grafs, please drop by to read the rest:

If America were Iraq, What would it be Like?

President Bush said Tuesday that the Iraqis are refuting the pessimists and implied that things are improving in that country.

What would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation? The population of the US is over 11 times that of Iraq, so a lot of statistics would have to be multiplied by that number.

Thus, violence killed 300 Iraqis last week, the equivalent proportionately of 3,300 Americans. What if 3,300 Americans had died in car bombings, grenade and rocket attacks, machine gun spray, and aerial bombardment in the last week? That is a number greater than the deaths on September 11, and if America were Iraq, it would be an ongoing, weekly or monthly toll.

And what if those deaths occurred all over the country, including in the capital of Washington, DC, but mainly above the Mason Dixon line, in Boston, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, and San Francisco?

What if the grounds of the White House and the government buildings near the Mall were constantly taking mortar fire? What if almost nobody in the State Department at Foggy Bottom, the White House, or the Pentagon dared venture out of their buildings, and considered it dangerous to go over to Crystal City or Alexandria?

What if all the reporters for all the major television and print media were trapped in five-star hotels in Washington, DC and New York, unable to move more than a few blocks safely, and dependent on stringers to know what was happening in Oklahoma City and St. Louis? What if the only time they ventured into the Midwest was if they could be embedded in Army or National Guard units?

There are estimated to be some 25,000 guerrillas in Iraq engaged in concerted acts of violence. What if there were private armies totalling 275,000 men, armed with machine guns, assault rifles (legal again!), rocket-propelled grenades, and mortar launchers, hiding out in dangerous urban areas of cities all over the country? What if they completely controlled Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Denver and Omaha, such that local police and Federal troops could not go into those cities?

Inform yourself and pay attention.

By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 6:12pm PT  

I just saw an ad on Fox from (I believe) the "Progress for America Voter Fund" that was almost identical to the Bush Campaign's own silly "Windsurfing" ad.

I can't find the PFA's ad online, but if someone out here in the blogosphere has more info on it I'd appreciate it. Along with an explanation of how an almost identical ad was released by a 527 for Bush the day after the Bush campaign themselves released a virtually identical ad when the campaigns and political parties are not supposed to be coordinating with 527's.

Anyone have any info on that? It was during the 5pm PT / 8pm ET O'Reilly show if anyone happens to have it TIVO'd. I'd love to make sure it was from PFA and/or get their website address and/or compare the ads online!

UPDATE: Okay, the ad ran again during Hannity & Colmes and I got the website address. It's from the "Progress for America Voter Fund" at Both ads show Kerry windsurfing, both ads use the text "whichever way the wind blows". Take a look:

+ Bush's "Windsurfing" ad here
+ PFA Voter Funds "Surfer Dude" ad here (Large Version / Small Version)

By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 2:02pm PT  

2001 Edition
By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 1:49pm PT  

"[F]rankly, [the sanctions on Iraq] have worked. He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors." - Colin Powell, February 24, 2001

"But in terms of Saddam Hussein being there, let's remember that his country is divided, in effect. He does not control the northern part of his country. We are able to keep arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt." - Condoleeza Rice, July 29, 2001

For more on the many stunning flips, flops, mixed-messages and more flops of Bush Iraq Policy, click here for documented details.

1918 Edition
By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 1:36pm PT  

"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." - Theodore Roosevelt, 1918

To the Point.
By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 1:20pm PT  

Well said by "nostalgic about my future":

interesting comparison on bush and rather

Dan Rather, CBS News Anchor
1) given documents he thought were true
2) failed to thoroughly investigate the facts
3) reported documents to the American people as true to make his case
4) when confronted with the facts, apologized and launched an investigation
5) number of Americans dead: 0
6) should be fired as CBS News Anchor

George W. Bush, President of the United States
1) given documents he thought were true
2) failed to thoroughly investigate the facts
3) reported documents to the American people as true to make his case
4) when confronted with the facts, continued to report untruth and stonewalled an investigation
5) number of Americans dead: 1100
6) should be given four more years as President of the United States

The irony, no doubt, is wholly lost on the irony-impaired Rightwing Kool-aid crowd.

Homeland Security a Failure; Ticking Time-Bomb
By Brad Friedman on 9/23/2004 12:18pm PT  

The only thing Bush can say for himself is that, aside from the successful Anthrax attacks and the terrorists who perpetrated it who, like Osama bin Laden, run free, there haven't been any "major" terrorist attacks on American soil since 9/11.

It's also a fact that the systematic round-up of hundreds and thousands of "suspected terrorists" have yielded not one successful prosecution that I know of. Yassir Hamdi, who was held for three years in solitary confinement, and considered "too dangerous" to even meet with a lawyer, was freed yesterday without charges.

The military interrogator who was supposedly a muslim spy of some sort, had his charges similarly dropped. Systematically, the Bush/Ashcroft Justice Department has been a failure at catching terrorists in this country, and has shit all over the constitution and "due process" in the bargain of achieving that failure.

But it's not just on that count that they have failed, as the Republican US Congressman from Florida, John Murtha recently pointed out. Murtha, chairman of the House aviation sub-committee, described the screening situation in U.S. Airports as "absolutely horrendous".

The head of Bush's own watchdog group for the Department of Homeland Security, Clark Kent Ervin, called said that "it may take some horrific wake-up call to get attention" on the failures of the Bush Administration to properly screen travellers at U.S. airports for the type of explosives that recently took down two Russian airplanes.

"Some horrific wake-up call?" Pardon me, but didn't we supposedly already get one of those horrific wake-up calls on 9/11? What the hell is still going on here, three years after 9/11?!

And what kind of "horrific wake-up call" are you Bush supporters going to need to figure out how you've been played for chumps?

From USA Today:

WASHINGTON Ś Undercover investigators were able to sneak explosives and weapons past security screeners at 15 airports nationwide, according to a government report on aviation security.

The government watchdog for the Department of Homeland Security, Clark Kent Ervin, delivered the results of the tests in a classified report to members of Congress. "The performance was poor," said Ervin, the department's inspector general, in releasing a less detailed version Wednesday.

The tests were done during the second half of 2003. But they highlight ongoing vulnerabilities in the nation's aviation security system, particularly in detecting explosives such as those that Russian authorities say were used to bring down two airliners last month.

Rep. John Mica, R-Fla., chairman of a House aviation subcommittee, confirmed that the longer, classified report showed weapons and explosives got by screeners. He said the results on weapons were "bad enough," but the results on explosives were "absolutely horrendous."

An earlier report in 2003 by the Government Accountability Office had found that undercover agents were able to slip guns, knives and box cutters past screeners.

In the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, the government installed explosive-detection machines in airports nationwide for checked baggage. But it has not installed equipment to check for explosives on all passengers and their carry-on bags. They are sent through metal detectors and only occasionally checked by explosive trace detection equipment.

"Unfortunately, it may take some horrific wake-up call to get attention," Mica said.


The lack of explosive-detection technology at passenger checkpoints nationwide "absolutely drives me out of my mind," Mica said. "It's so frustrating."

And Mica is a Republican! From Florida! In an Election Year!

How many more Americans need to die before you Republican Bush Worshippers realize how you are being played? The messages above are almost precisely like those that came out, and were subsequently ignored by the Bush Administration, in the weeks and month prior to 9/11!

Hello??? Is this thing on???

Though I realize that's not a news flash...
...and it's not really fair to scum.
By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 10:52pm PT  

From Media Matters:

Radio host Rush Limbaugh claimed that "half of the [Kerry political] base hates the military, hates America." Then, in discussing a new advertisement by MoveOn PAC that depicts an American soldier caught in the "quagmire" of Iraq, Limbaugh declared that the ad was a "classic illustration" of the fact that "extreme liberals ... love it when the military loses."

The full clips are even worse. The whole story --- with actual sourcing, audio, explanations and substantive and verifiable background links, instead of tweaked, out-of-context, misleading, lying bullshit --- right here.

Reason #864 to vote against Bush: Demonstrate to that sick, America-hating fuck, Rush Limbaugh what real patriots think of him and his sick, twisted, demented ilk.

By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 10:18pm PT  

If, like me, you don't live in a swing state, you may be unaware of the new TV spots from the Kerry Team. Their new "Juvenile" ad hits back hard at Bush's silly new "Windsurfing" attack ad.

Perhaps it's just me, but I think it might be nice to have a serious person in the White House during some rather serious times.

Most importantly, the Kerry Team got this one out quickly in rapid response! Perhaps they're starting to get it. If I can turn out a video ad in an afternoon with no resources, cheap lifted graphics and a free video editor, I'd think they could do much better! And it looks like they're finally starting to!

After checking out the "Juvenile" spot, be sure to check out some of Kerry's other recent TV spots that you may not have seen! Impressive and lookin' much better!

Special thanks to Alan Colmes (Yes, Alan Colmes!) and Fox News (Yes, Fox News!) for tipping me off to the ad by showing it tonight in immediate response after playing the Bush ad! It's nice to see a bit of actual "Fair and Balance" from Fox! And Colmes delivered some of that tonight!

Though I may have a few things to say about O'Reilly a bit later... :-)

(But not for much longer.)
By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 9:06pm PT  

Something from the good folks at the DCCC's Stakeholder...
Dedicated to the great Americans on Enron's trading floor, Tom DeLay, Kenny-Boy Lay, the former Governor of Texas and Big Dick Cheney! All set to a beat you can dance to! HIT IT!

The BRAD BLOG Video Ad Helps Get Out the Word!
By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 1:26pm PT  

Looks like our "Take Your Country Back" video featuring Jimmy Swaggart may be having an effect out there!

It appears that the good Christian minister and admitted prostitute frequenter who, as you can hear in the BRAD BLOG video, advocates both voting for Bush and killing homosexuals, has taken down the original video of his sermon featuring that lovely suggestion!

It was previously available online at mms:// but for some reason is no longer there!

The Archive Page at Mr. Swaggart's website where one can view all of his shows, no longer lists the link to his show from the week of September 12, 2004, in which he spoke of killing homosexuals and telling "God they died" if they looked at him the wrong way. That show is now missing from the list!

Apparently then (unless someone has a cached copy) the only place you can hear it, is right here: - So please keep passing that link around!

We don't usually discuss hit numbers here, but let's just say however many hits you think that spot has gotten here, it's gotten several thousand more than that thanks to you all! Keep spreading the word!

Please direct any questions about the original tape or it's content to Mr. Swaggart's Feedback Page.

UPDATE: The video of the pertinent section is right here from the original broadcast. It's in Windows Media Player format via Oliver Willis' site! Glad he was able to save it, since I wasn't! Thanks to Rev. Meier for the link!

ANOTHER UPDATE: AMERICABlog has a story that may explain another reason the original video was taken down. Hint: Canadians actually have their own version of the FCC, but with more important concerns than Janet Jackson's nipple.

By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 12:31pm PT  

Following up on my essay yesterday on the disingenuous and hypocritical charge by partisan Republicans that there is such a thing as a "Liberal" media bias. My article detailed loads of recent examples of bias from the so-called "Liberal" media that were never challenged by Republicans because, as it turned out, those "mistakes" from such "liberal" bastions as The New York Times and The Washington Post and CNN etc. actually supported (and in fact drew from) the Republican Talking Points of the moment.

Such numerous mistakes and/or bias was just fine by them when it just happened to support their policies. It's only a problem for them when, as with the CBS story, the errors are in a story that may hurt them. At which time they start yipping and yapping, "See?! That's what we've been saying all along about Liberal medial bias!!!"

What complete phonies these guys are.

Anyway, while the stories I pointed to were recent examples, here's a few more historical examples of same from Gene Lyons (link via Atrios):

I saw pundit Andrew Sullivan on CNN clucking over CBS' mistakes. In 1994, when Sullivan edited The New Republic, it ran a cover story accusing Bill Clinton of corruptly enriching his wife's law firm by changing Arkansas usury laws as governor. In fact, the deed was done by public referendum under Clinton's Republican predecessor.

On Dec. 19, 1995, ABC News' "Nightline" aired a deceptively edited video clip of a Hillary Clinton press conference about Whitewater. It accused her of lying about the very information electronically deleted from her remarks. No consequences followed.

On May 4, 1996, The New York Times published an article with a deceptive Associated Press byline stating that an FBI agent's trial testimony described a $50,000 windfall to Whitewater from an illegal loan. As the actual AP article stipulated, the agent gave no such testimony. Many accusatory editorials and columns followed, helping Kenneth Starr to prolong his fruitless investigation of Bill Clinton's finances for years. The Times has never acknowledged its blunder.

Bob Somerby's has documented countless instances of reporters parroting and sometimes inventing nonsensical tales making Al Gore look like a big phony during the 2000 campaignŚthat he claimed he'd "invented the Internet," for example, or falsely said he'd inspired the movie "Love Story."

Both make-believe, both repeated ad infinitum by pundits who feared no consequences because Democrats don't get it, while Republicans protect their own and savage anybody who gets in their way.


Republican phonies (like frequent BRAD BLOG commentors Paul and Ed) may now start clucking their nonsense again here in the Comments section. Or, as is more likely, they'll avoid comment on this article as they are want to do when they have run out of Rush-approved Talking Point explanations, apologies, justifications and outright lies.

(To be fair, it's not just Paul and Ed who are willfully blind phony parroting stooges, they just happen to be the BRAD BLOG's own personal willfully blind phony parroting stooges, so we like to give them full credit where credit is due.)

No Dirty Trick Too Dirty for Republicans...
By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 12:19pm PT  

This is a scan of a mailing being sent out in Arkansas from a GOP return address. Apparently the mailing, which I blogged about a few days ago as going to West Virginians, is now being sent out to voters in multiple states.

The full brochure was procured, scanned and made available by Steve Clemons of The Washington Note.

By Brad Friedman on 9/22/2004 9:19am PT  

From last night's show...

JOHN STEWART: What do you think is gonna happen now at CBS News?

STEPHEN COLBERT: Well, John, there's gotta be some accountability. Dan Rather is the head, the "Commander-in-Chief", if you will, of his organization. He's someone in the ultimate position of power who made a harmful decision based upon questionable evidence.

Then, to make things worse, he stubbornly refused to admit his mistake, choosing instead to stay the course and essentially occupy this story for too long.

This man has got to go!

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