Sunday, March 30, 2003

Good riddance to useless lying filth. Of course, they'll probably hire Anne Coulter to replace her. "Fair and balanced" and and all that crap. Stupid morons at CNN still want to be Faux News Lite. What idiots.

Connie Chung Will Leave CNN

CNN has told Connie Chung, one of its most prominent anchors, that it has dropped her prime-time program, effective immediately. Although CNN asked her to stay in some other capacity, she declined and will leave the network, an associate of Ms. Chung said last night.
CNN: You LYING WHORES! France (and many, many other countries) are FED UP with your jingoistic propaganda! Your days are numbers, Presstitutes! I will watch your downfall with great joy. Liars. You have blood on your hands, Aaron Brown! And you can NEVER wash it off. Viva la France!

Chirac demands France creates a rival to CNN

President Jacques Chirac has ordered his officials to draw up plans for a French-language, international television channel to counter the growing influence of the BBC and CNN.

He has demanded that the blueprint for the service - already nicknamed "CNN a la Francaise" - be ready by the end of next month as he has become increasingly irritated by the "Anglo-Saxon" view of global events which is being beamed into millions of homes and hotel rooms around the world.


"We've been concerned for a long time that the BBC and CNN reporting on events from a British or American perspective and in English," said a government official. "As recent events have shown, France may see things differently and we feel it is important that we get our message across."

It's getting hard to be pro-American


Actually, the thing that really sent me nuts was the sight of Lou Dobbs, the magnificently portentous host of CNN's Moneyline, ending his rather starchy financial show with an unprecedented musical number, extolling the advantages of "getting Saddam".

In recognition of the country's exceptional circumstances, Dobbs had procured two wan-looking cowboy types to perform a dirge-like ditty called Have You Forgotten? While footage of the disintegrating World
Trade Centre flashed up on the screen, they yodelled their priceless doggerel: "Some people say that with this war, we're just looking for a fight, I say, after 9/11 ? well, that's all right."

I still love America. I really do. I know, in my sane mind, that tubby Lou Dobbs is not the representative of the country's best qualities and principles. Still, watching him nodding his head feelingly to this
moronic ditty, I felt, for the first time in a long time, a stab of primitive anti-American loathing. "Turn it off! Turn it off!" I found myself yelling at my bewildered boyfriend. "What the hell is wrong with
you people, anyway?" I dare say even Lord Haw-Haw had his limits.

Thursday, March 13, 2003

How the quote process should work

3/13/2003 4:26:56 PM
Posted By: Jim Romenesko

Having worked as a reporter for 25 years, I've got to say I'm completely and utterly appalled at Jonathan Weisman's account of how the Bush Administration is vetting quotes and demanding changes in quotes on stories about public policy proposals. For one thing, when nobody says them, they're not quotes, period. End of story. To say they are quotes is a lie. End of story. And my sources do not get to tell me what they said. They say what they say, I write it down or record it, and I put it in my stories if I think it's relevant, with the blessing of my editors. If I do not quote them correctly, I do not get to continue working as a reporter. That's how it works, or rather how it's supposed to. To me this is just one more example of the the way the Washington press corps has rolled over and become lapdogs for the Bush Administration.
There are terrific stories to be told about this bunch, as good as or better than anything that ever came out of the Clinton years, but for a variety of reasons (fear, laziness, misguided patriotism) they are not being told. Sept. 11 changed some things, but it did not change the press's responsibility to act as guardians for the public interest and of the public's tax dollars at work.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Sunday, March 09, 2003

My apologies for my inactivity of late --- I've been working on a very time-consuming project and have not had much time to catalog CNN's attrocities. I'm sure they are spewing them out, fast and furious.

I hope to get back to serious Blogging next week. In the meantime, here are some stories that I hope people will send out to friends. If our votes are not counted then our Democracy truly is, once and for all, destroyed.

I know most people are pretty much obsessed with ChimpCo's coming war (thank you, Karl Rove), but we can't forget other looming issues. This is one of the biggest, in my opinion.

Welcome to the nightmare:

In the rush to correct problems exposed by the 2000 Presidential election debacle in Florida, many municipalities were pressured or required to procure new voting systems. The most vulnerable of these systems are the fully electronic touch-screen or kiosk (DRE) devices because of their lack of an independent, voter-verified audit trail. The vendors and certifying
authorities have taken a "trust us" stance, claiming that the machines are "fail-safe" and that the internal record and tally constitutes an accurate reflection of the ballots cast on the machine. In fact, machines have failed in actual use, not only displaying choices that were not selected by the voters, but also by mis-recording votes (in some cases losing them entirely, or shifting them to other candidates). Some of the machines enter a lock-down mode at the end of the balloting session, where it is impossible to later check that votes could be cast properly for each candidate or issue. Vendors have tied the hands of election officials and independent examiners by protecting their systems under restrictive trade-secret agreements, making it a felony to inspect the operation of the machine without a comprehensive court order. The articles linked below in my writings section provide an illustration of the magnitude of these problems. My analyses are based on computer science and engineering facts, and are not politically motivated. Please read these materials carefully and contact me if you should require further clarification or assistance.

Who makes the vote-counting machines?

This is an article about just three things: disclosure, conflict of interest and potential for manipulation. It is not a conspiracy theory or a political point of view. I think you'll agree with me: We don't care who wins the election, as long as it's who was VOTED FOR.

If we lose confidence in our voting system, it won't matter what we think about any issue. Voting won't matter. Democracy won't matter.

A lethal combination: Three nasty little guys that don't belong anywhere near our voting system keep showing up at the polls. Their names are Nondisclosure, Conflict of Interest, and Potential for Manipulation.

How credible is the information in this article? Click the links and you'll find verification, often on the companies' own web sites. Click footnotes and you'll find sources and excerpts.

A Vote for Less Tech at the Polls  By Joanna Glasner

Story location:,1367,56370,00.html
02:00 AM Nov. 19, 2002 PT

In the national debate over upgrading election infrastructure, Peter Neumann is an unlikely defender of the low-tech approach.

As principle scientist at Stanford Research Institute's Computer Science Laboratory, Neumann has spent the last 20 years studying how intrusion detection systems, cryptography and advanced software engineering can improve the reliability and security of computer systems.

But get him talking about how to run an election, and Neumann becomes an outspoken advocate of the paper ballot. He's also a sharp critic of computerized touch-screen voting machines.

"Some of them have lovely human interfaces, but if there's no assurance your vote goes through, it's irrelevant," said Neumann, who is concerned that in the fervor to embrace new voting technology, many jurisdictions will compromise the integrity of the election process.

Two weeks after the most highly computerized federal election in U.S. history, a number of computer scientists continue to raise concerns over security risks created by the widespread adoption of touch-screen voting systems.

Despite reports of smooth performance on Election Day from the major voting machine manufacturers, many experts remain concerned about fixing potential bugs before states spend billions more on touch-screen systems to automate the election process.

While paper ballots, punch cards and lever machines have their problems, a worry among some computer scientists is that the risks presented by touch-screen systems are more insidious because they are harder to detect. Critics of so-called direct recording electronic, or DRE, voting machines, most of which employ touch screens, are particularly concerned about the lack of a paper trail. Although the most widely used DRE machines can at day's end print out at a record of ballots cast, detractors say this is insufficient.

Votescam in the Electronic Age

THE FIX IS IN A week before the midterm election, President Bush signed the Help America Vote Act. It provides $3.9 billion to the states over the next three years to upgrade local election equipment. A handful of election technology companies have positioned themselves to reap the bulk of the money from the legislation. Expect them to lobby hard in the coming year. The system they are pushing most aggressively across the country, also happens to be the most expensive. It’s called direct recording electronic or DRE. Typically, DREs involve computerized touch-screen voting machines.

DREs offer an opportunity to commit electoral fraud with an astounding efficiency only available in the computer age. The machines offer no real-time evidence of a vote beyond what appears on the screen. (Cartridges collect the voting data which then can be printed out after the election.) Even though most customers at ATMs demand an immediate receipt of their transaction, with DREs voters are not afforded the same measure of accountability when electing their civic leaders. The source codes to operate the machines are proprietary to the company that supplies them. And as any computer programmer knows, it would be a simple matter to add a line of code to switch votes or simply lose them.

The fears of cynics (and those who read history) aside, DRE technology has produced enough unintentional errors to make one wonder about the glitches that go undiscovered. Researchers from Caltech and MIT concluded that three percent of ballots that went through DRE machines were not counted in the 2000 presidential race. In Dallas County this past election, dozens of voters in a number of precincts complained during early voting that when they selected a Democratic candidate on the touch screen, it registered a Republican. Election officials blamed the problem on "badly calibrated voting machines." Democrats unsuccessfully petitioned Republican District Judge Karen Johnson to order a court-supervised testing of the machines.

If You Want To Win An Election, Just Control The Voting Machines

by Thom Hartmann


The respected Washington, DC publication The Hill ( ) has confirmed that former conservative radio talk-show host and now Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel was the head of, and continues to own part interest in, the company that owns the company that installed, programmed, and largely ran the voting machines that were used by most of the citizens of Nebraska.

Back when Hagel first ran there for the U.S. Senate in 1996, his company's computer-controlled voting machines showed he'd won stunning upsets in both the primaries and the general election. The Washington Post (1/13/1997) said Hagel's "Senate victory against an incumbent Democratic governor was the major Republican upset in the November election." According to Bev Harris of , Hagel won virtually every demographic group, including many largely Black communities that had never before voted Republican. Hagel was the first Republican in 24 years to win a Senate seat in Nebraska.

Six years later Hagel ran again, this time against Democrat Charlie Matulka in 2002, and won in a landslide. As his website says, Hagel "was re-elected to his second term in the United States Senate on November 5, 2002 with 83% of the vote. That represents the biggest political victory in the history of Nebraska."

What Hagel's website fails to disclose is that about 80 percent of those votes were counted by computer-controlled voting machines put in place by the company affiliated with Hagel. Built by that company. Programmed by that company.

"This is a big story, bigger than Watergate ever was," said Hagel's Democratic opponent in the 2002 Senate race, Charlie Matulka ( "They say Hagel shocked the world, but he didn't shock me."

Is Matulka the sore loser the Hagel campaign paints him as, or is he democracy's proverbial canary in the mineshaft?

Hacking democracy?

Computerized vote-counting machines are sweeping the country. But they can be hacked -- and right now there's no way to be sure they haven't been.

By Farhad Manjoo

Feb. 20, 2003  |  During the past five months, Bev Harris has e-mailed to news organizations a series of reports that detail alarming problems in the high-tech voting machinery currently sweeping its way through American democracy. But almost no one is paying attention.

Harris is a literary publicist and writer whose investigations into the secret world of voting equipment firms have led some to call her the Erin Brockovich of elections. Harris has discovered, for example, that Diebold, the company that supplied touch-screen voting machines to Georgia during the 2002 election, made its system's sensitive software files available on a public Internet site. She has reported on the certification process for machines coming onto the market -- revealing that the software code running the equipment is seldom thoroughly reviewed and can often be changed with mysteriously installed "patches" just prior to an election. And in perhaps her most eyebrow-raising coup, she found that Sen. Chuck Hagel, a Nebraska Republican, used to run the company that built most of the machines that count votes in his state -- and that he still owns a stake in the firm.

Computerized Voting Comes Under Fire in Georgia and California


Georgia, however, did use the open server, downloading software patches to tweak the elections program and ensure it worked properly on Election Day. Brit Williams, a college professor who tested and certified Diebold's system in preparation for Georgia's November elections, explains in a Web-published transcript of an interview with Harris that "we were in the heat of the election. Some of the things we did [involving the open server], we probably compromised security a little bit. . . . We've gone back since the election and done extensive testing on all this."

Black Box Voting by Bev Harris

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Going Off to War Supplied With Lies

Doubt everything. Trust nothing. Believe nothing. Governments and the media messengers are lying now.
Going Off to War Supplied With Lies

by Nicholas von Hoffman

"War whore" is the name. They’re the ladies and gentlemen of the media who whoop, holler and thigh-slap the United States into war. Day in and day out, hour after hour, on the TV news channels in particular, they tingle with happy excitement as they strain to infect their viewers (and somewhat less often, their readers) with their enthusiasm for the looming death and disfigurement of others.

Friday, February 28, 2003

Thanks to Atrios at Eschaton for finding this. I had to watch it twice because the first time through I thought it was parody. It really is one of the most appauling things I have ever seen and heard. (Make sure your sound is working before clicking the link.) Oh. My. God. This is what it has come to. CNN has sunk even lower than I thought possible. If you EVER had any doubt about CNN selling war as product, this ghastly new low will erase it forever.

CNN Iraq Tracker

Get CNN Iraq Tracker free as part of QuickCast with AOL Broadband -- and more!
Another Call To Action, via Buzzflash

I cannot believe that those MORONS at MSNBC have dumped Donahue, a rare voice for issues that the mainstream was too frightened to touch. The channel is shifting to the right in a desperate, and ultimately unsuccessful, effort to overtake Faux news. I understand they have hired that racist pig Michael Savage (nee Weiner -- a far more appropriate moniker for the little prick) to appeal to an unenlightened and intellectually challenged audience share. He goes so well with Joe "Dead Woman in My Office" Scarborough, another recent addition to their right wing lineup.

Please urge your readers to send a strong e-mail of disgust and reprobation to the dunces in charge. Unless and until we stand up and really bitch, the GOParty line is all we'll hear across the airwaves. Might as well start with Donahue -- it will only take a second of each reader's time, and it may let these nitwits know that we are out there, we watch TV, and we are tired of this crap. The email address for viewer comments is

Do it. Write to them. It's high time that Liberals start fighting back. Enough. Is. Enough.
Radio talk of treason threatens free speech

Like many others, I had the interesting experience Wednesday morning -- soon after dropping off my kids at school and turning on the car radio -- of hearing a famous voice use the word "traitor." He was talking about some opponents of the Bush administration's policy toward Iraq.

The speaker was Neal Boortz, and Boortz's humor and politics are such that sometimes you have to take him with a grain of salt. He loves to poke and mock and outrage all manner of liberals, peaceniks, dupes and weaklings.

But, like other right-wing talk show talkers, he has been pushing hard lately -- and in solemn terms -- for exactly the war the administration wants. And he has been painting the administration's critics and questioners as defenders of Saddam Hussein, and as unwilling to defend their country and their civilization.


Sean Hannity -- another right-wing radio talker, who used to be based right here in Atlanta before he moved on to greater glory -- has been defending the administration's plans and policies in the same abusive way -- and sticking even closer to the party line than Boortz. Hannity, too, is broadcast locally. He's on the same station, in fact, that carries Boortz: WSB, which is owned by the same company that owns The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

David Meszaros, general manager of WSB, told me Wednesday that Boortz's use of "traitor" was "just an opinion" and that it was aimed, in this case, at some people willing to be used as "human shields" against an American attack.

Earlier in the day, before Meszaros had gone back and listened to a recording of Boortz's comments, the executive defended him as "entertaining." Listeners "know the polarizing nature of Boortz," Meszaros said, and they know him as "very bright" and "very controversial."

Maybe so. But I think a tolerance for strong opinions can underestimate the dangers of certain commentators using the media to smear the patriotism of dissenting Americans in wartime.

Ok. Enough is enough. I listen to the blowhard asshole Boortz sometimes. He's a congenital liar and his show is a non-stop hatefest. He has been stirring up anti-Islamic hatred for months on end. This sort of hate speech is what is rapidly destroying our country --- what's left of it anyway.

Liberals need to get off their butts and fight back. I know, historically, Liberals are more even-keeled and low-key in their approach, but that time is gone. This is a WAR for the soul and the direction of our country, and the whole world is watching.

Call David Meszaros at WSB Radio at 404-897-7500 and ask him (politely) to stop spreading hatred and lies via OUR airwaves.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Finding Trouble in U.S. by Jimmy Breslin


She remembered yesterday that she said, "This is crazy."

The older agent said, "If you tell me one more time that this is crazy, I'll put handcuffs on you and throw you into a cell."
"All right, I won't say one more time that this is crazy. But it is crazy," she said.

Then Bernadette Devlin, who for so many years showed Catholics in Northern Ireland how to breathe and be as unafraid as she was, and by doing so placed the first jobs they ever had into their lives, this small woman with music for a voice who thrilled so many Irish in New York, wound up in an office, where she was fingerprinted and photographed.

Humiliate them. Then frighten them. "I'm going to throw you in prison," the older man said.

He tried the wrong party. "You can't do that," she said. "I have rights. I have the right to free movement. I have human rights. I have the right to be protected under the Constitution of the United States."

The daughter overheard one of them say, "After 9/11, nobody has any rights."

It was common mouthing and behavior from a government that daily shears people of their rights.

"This must be the way they treat every Mrs. McAliskey," she was saying yesterday. "That was the most disturbing."
Under John Ashcroft, a prayer breakfast man who probably prays against people, the Justice Department doesn't believe in the Bill of Rights. Ashcroft is useless in a big Justice Department case against such as Enron. How could he be? Even he says he accepted big donations from them.

But he can sweep the rights of individuals out of the room, and do it while humming prayer songs.

In one week in this city, an anti-war demonstration was blocked by the mayor and police commissioner, and now Bernadette Devlin is deported. That one comes from Washington. She is cleared easily by American agents in Dublin who knew she was in order. Suddenly, they are ordered to send a fax to Chicago to block her. Somebody in Washington, with the mind of a rodent, has to order that.

I really don't know what to say. In George W. Bush and John Ashcroft's America, Bernadette Devlin, this brave, courageous woman, has been reduced to being an "Enemy of the State".

Next, it could easily be you or me.

UPDATE: Feds Say Activist's Visa Was Expired

Yeah, right. I believe them, don't you? Someone needs to follow up on this. And John Ashcroft needs to be removed from office. He's not fit, in any way, shape or form, to be Attorney General.

Jeanne Butterfield, executive director of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, said Attorney General John Ashcroft has the authority to ban entry of anyone he deems to be a threat to this country's security.
But Butterfield said she was appalled by the action.

"It would not surprise me if they had caught some Arab or Muslim political figure and kept him out," said Butterfield, given the high alert level and political climate.

"But to stop people who may have been sympathetic to the IRA, it's frightening to me. It's chilling," Butterfield said. "It suggests the noose is tightening on all of us."

This appauling incident took place last week in Cobb County, Georgia. Cobb is notoriously Rightwing. During the 1996 Olympics Cobb was bypassed for any related events because their elected officials passed an incredibly bigoted resolution claiming that the "gay lifestyle" was not welcome in Cobb.

Even so, this is despicable behavior. What the hell has happened to our country? Granted, we're being purposely frightened on a daily/hourly basis by both our Government and our "Media" --- but what the hell is this? How have we come to this point? It is certainly worth examining, but I fear that the damage is done, it might well be too late to save America from herself.

Disagree at your own risk


I never chanted, raised my voice, confronted anyone or was disrespectful to those around me. I simply held my sign and stood my ground. The abuse came first from a small group of homemakers standing near me, their small children dressed in red, white and blue.

"Go home! You don't belong here," they said.

All around me folks began to speak up, and it wasn't long before a large group of people crossed the street with banners and flags and began aggressively yelling "Go USA!" Bob, a young man with a ball cap and a sign reading "Drop Bush, Not Bombs" came and stood with me for support.

The really frightening stuff began when a television cameraman stopped and asked me why I was there. As soon as the crowd saw the camera pointed at me, they went wild. I was trying to express myself and they screamed at me and over my voice. A man stood behind me making obscene gestures as I spoke.

The reporter tried three times, unsuccessfully, to get a picture without obscenity. One woman spat in my hair. The journalist gave up and moved on. The mob did not. Men and women violently screamed in my face and Bob's.

It stopped just long enough for the president's motorcade to pass by and then erupted again. We were told to " Get the f--- out of the country," had obscene gestures pushed in our faces. An elderly man told me to "Go to hell!"

I was in a state of shock. Here I was, a 42-year-old mother of four, born and raised in Cobb County, holding a peace sign, standing on the sidewalk across the street from my church, and I was frightened that my neighbors were going to hurt me because I dared to express my opinion. This could not be happening. Not in America, right?

This is what they've done to us. They've divided us. They've turned our allies into enemies. They did this: The Busheviki and their handmaidens in the "Media".
I've got some good stuff on CNN to post, but right now I'm too disturbed. Two articles I just read (and will post shortly) have me reeling --- literally mourning for the country we USED to be. It's gone, all of it. Our freedoms have been stripped from us when John Ashcroft hustled his insane "Patriot Act" through congress --- and he's not done yet --- he's waiting for war to unveil the new, improved "Patriot II" which will further strip us of rights we have had as citizens for over 200 years.

New Yorkers were not allowed to peacefully march in protest of this war. Ashcroft had a hand in that one too. Those who express opposition to this immoral war are routinely called "unAmerican" and much, much worse. Tens of millions of people around the world who marched against the war were reduced to "thousands" in the soundbites repeated over the airwaves by sneering, condescending Presstitutes.

We have an unelected "Leader" who is pushing our country (and the world) to the brink of destruction. Our elected Representatives have failed us --- signing Ashcroft's horrible bill WITHOUT EVEN READING IT. The rightwing media in this country is busily shredding the last of the remaining post-9/11 goodwill of the people of the world and, in the process, convincing vast numbers of Americans that "we don't need no stinkin' feriners".

It boggles my mind when I look back at the last two years. Simply amazing and stupefying. The list of atrocities is so long, so fast moving, that it really makes my head spin. I can't keep up.

I know that the Bushies were planning this war since before they stole the election, but I guarantee you, 9 out of 10 Americans have no clue. Because our "Media" lies to us. The same Presstitutes that savaged Al Gore and knowingly spread lies and fabrications about him. They are to blame, they did this to us. CNN and Faux News were the leaders of the pack. They should be held accountable.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

Robert Fisk: How the news will be censored in this war: A new CNN system of 'script approval' suggests the Pentagon will have nothing to worry about

Already, the American press is expressing its approval of the coverage of American forces which the US military intends to allow its reporters in the next Gulf war. The boys from CNN, CBS, ABC and The New York Times will be "embedded" among the US marines and infantry. The degree of censorship hasn't quite been worked out. But it doesn't matter how much the Pentagon cuts from the reporters' dispatches. A new CNN system of "script approval" – the iniquitous instruction to reporters that they have to send all their copy to anonymous officials in Atlanta to ensure it is suitably sanitised – suggests that the Pentagon and the Department of State have nothing to worry about. Nor do the Israelis.

Indeed, reading a new CNN document, "Reminder of Script Approval Policy", fairly takes the breath away. "All reporters preparing package scripts must submit the scripts for approval," it says. "Packages may not be edited until the scripts are approved... All packages originating outside Washington, LA (Los Angeles) or NY (New York), including all international bureaus, must come to the ROW in Atlanta for approval."

The date of this extraordinary message is 27 January. The "ROW" is the row of script editors in Atlanta who can insist on changes or "balances" in the reporter's dispatch. "A script is not approved for air unless it is properly marked approved by an authorised manager and duped (duplicated) to burcopy (bureau copy)... When a script is updated it must be re-approved, preferably by the originating approving authority."

Note the key words here: "approved" and "authorised". CNN's man or woman in Kuwait or Baghdad – or Jerusalem or Ramallah – may know the background to his or her story; indeed, they will know far more about it than the "authorities" in Atlanta. But CNN's chiefs will decide the spin of the story.


But the system of "script approval" that has so marred CNN's coverage has got worse. In a further and even more sinister message dated 31 January this year, CNN staff are told that a new computerised system of script approval will allow "authorised script approvers to mark scripts (ie reports) in a clear and standard manner. Script EPs (executive producers) will click on the coloured APPROVED button to turn it from red (unapproved) to green (approved). When someone makes a change in the script after approval, the button will turn yellow." Someone? Who is this someone? CNN's reporters aren't told.

But when we recall that CNN revealed after the 1991 Gulf War that it had allowed Pentagon "trainees" into the CNN newsroom in Atlanta, I have my suspicions.

CNN is nothing more than a Government-approved propaganda machine, reading scripts full of lies and distortions in order to prop up this dangerous and unelected regime. TURN THEM OFF!

Saturday, February 22, 2003

Here is an amicus brief, filed by John Ashcroft's "Justice" Department in the case over whether or not New Yorkers would be allowed to march to the U.N. Building. Of course, they were DENIED the permit to march. But how many people know that the DoJ got involved? Ironically, the argument they used in this brief was that we have to PROTECT the U.N.! Ha! After months of America's Rightwingnut Brigade denouncing and belittling the U.N., that's rich!

CNN: Where's your coverage on that? Huh?
This letter writer certainly "gets it".

Regarding "The great trans-Atlantic media divide" (Views, Feb. 19) by Paul Krugman: The media divide runs not only between the United States and Europe, it also goes right down the middle of one of the biggest English-language media institutions, CNN.
CNN America and CNN International often seem to have little in common. While the former seems almost exclusively geared to the American point of view, the latter brings many different national perspectives - both for and against - discussions and interviews with different people, from different countries and often with widely differing opinions. Unfortunately, as far as I know, viewers in America don't get to see these.
Jacqueline Giere, Wiesbaden, Germany

The US mass media are simply echoing the war cryof the Bush administration

It had to be heard to be believed! Jonathan Carl, a CNN correspondent who was standing in for a regular programme anchor, was commenting on American reaction to North Korea since Pyongyang embarked on a course of outright confrontation with the United States of America on the nuclear issue.

He named the North Korean leader as King Jong the second! How could it be? North Korea was so much in the news and how could a CNN correspondent who handled important beats in Washington get it wrong? But once again, Carl said it in his report: Kim Jong II.

Then it dawned on the more discriminating viewers. This CNN correspondent who was authoritatively commenting on the developing crisis between the US and North Korea did not have a clue to the name of the man who rules the world’s only remaining Stalinist state. Perhaps, he had heard that North Korea is a communist dynasty? That Koreans, for a good part, are all Kims? That the founder of the North Korean state was a Kim too? Then surely, in the Marxist dynasty, his son and successor must be King Jong the second?

One of the more dangerous aspects of the current countdown to war with Iraq is the role of the US media.

With rare exceptions, American television has taken upon itself the task of selling president George W Bush’s war against Saddam Hussein.

In this propaganda effort for the White House, it does not offer readers any adequate choice of views or news. It openly dismisses those who speak up against the coming conflict even on the few occasions when they are called to appear on television screens. It long ago gave up the pretence that as a free media, it was offering viewers enough balance and variety so that they could independently make up their minds on the question of overthrowing Saddam Hussein through an invasion.

The rest of the world sees it. They know we Americans are being lied to.

Friday, February 21, 2003


For the past six years, the American Gulf War Veterans Association have received numerous reports from veterans stating that US forces were responsible for the setting of the oil well fires at the end of the Gulf War.Ê These testimonies are now being taken very seriously in light of recent revelations of the events that occurred during the first Gulf War.
Joyce Riley, spokesperson for The American Gulf War Veterans Association is quoted as saying: ÒThere was intentional misinformation given to the American people to generate support for Desert Storm often created by advertising agencies such as Hill and Knowlton.Ó


One veteran has now stepped forward and given a detailed account of how he and others in special teams, moved forward of the front, (behind enemy lines ahead of US forces) and then set charges on the well heads. ÒWe were mustered into the briefing tent at which point a gentleman whom I first had thought to be an American began to brief us on the operation. I was concerned because he was not wearing a US uniform and insignias.Ó
The information provided over a series of meetings with this veteran corroborates reports from other veterans who are totally unconnected with this individual. This testimony brings into serious question the integrity of the US government, as it provided information to the American public and military during the last Gulf War.

Maybe Aaron Brown will book this Gulf War Veteran on his show. (Yeah, right.)

Thursday, February 20, 2003

Disturbing Questions

On a recent CNN International broadcast, I watched Tom Ridge being interviewed by Wolf Blitzer. Blitzer lobbed softball questions, picked up the slack and explained the White House position when Ridge was at a loss for words, and then framed several questions about partisan Democrats being at the root of security problems and war resistance.

Blitzer never asked: "Why did you guys run a focus group on your terrorism alert? Doesn't that smack of political manipulation rather than true patriotic concern for America's safety? Did the White House really file a supporting motion in court to block the peace rallies in NY? What scientific studies did Homeland Security use to determine duct tape and plastic were effective against chemical and biological bombs? And how is it that neither the FBI nor CIA gave the "informant" a lie detector test prior to issuing the Orange Alert? Doesn't that show incompetence of two agencies charged with protecting America?"

Blitzer never asked one of those questions. Although, cutting to commercial he did say, "CNN the most trusted name in news." Umm - Okay.

I would like to say that I was flabbergasted by this lackluster GOP-apologist performance, but the truth is, this is all we can expect from the lickspittle smarmy microphone that passes for today's media. How many "journalists" does it take to change a light bulb? None. They get well paid to work in the dark.


Everyone talks around the subject but no one makes the White House answer the question: Why, if Saddam has chemical and biological weapons, are you willing to risk thousands of lives by invading Iraq? Don't you think they will use them in defense of their country? Or is that what you are hoping for? Is that why the nuclear option is not only on the table but also in the news?

And therein lies the chilling question. What is going on here?

This White House is obsessed with elections and the installation of the GOP as the ruling party of America. Why would they be willing to risk a war that could run amok and generate thousands of horrible casualties of our military men and women? Their own credibility and coming presidential election is on the line here. What would be the benefit for them? And make no mistake; no calculation has gone unexamined by this cabal of conservative ideologists. So what exactly do they know that the rest of us are not allowed to know?

This MUST READ article ends with this chilling observation: "Something evil this way comes - but no one wants to ask. No one wants to know."

CNN (and the rest of the Presstitutes) are willing accomplices in this terrible unfolding tragedy. They will have blood on their hands for sitting silently by and letting this horror come to pass. They must ALWAYS be held accountable for this; they must NEVER be allowed to forget or downplay their role. They must NEVER be forgiven.
Janeane Garofalo kicked some Presstitute butt on Crossfire. This woman ROCKS! More please!!!

GAROFALO: I would respond to that, Tucker. After 1996 and the deregulation, the FCC deregulation which enabled fewer and fewer corporate owners of more and more media outlets have homogenize the news. I think the news has a big stake in war, because it means ratings and it means viewers and it's I guess, to them, exciting stories. I do think that there's corporate entities that own the news and that's why the news is sort of reflective of establishment views. And like Fox, basically the White House.

Fox News is a mouthpiece for the White House. And I would say that it's not like you're getting really exciting, diverse news from all these news outlets, I think they're basically establishment voice with a bit of variation here and there, but -- and if I can move on further to the fact that I also know that it's not ideal that people have chosen entertainment for a career or talking about the anti-war movement. Unfortunately, the anti-war movement which is huge seems to get more attention when a handful of actors have access to the camera.

Janeane gets it. And she beats the Media Whores at their own game, you gotta love it.

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

Bush's 'sacrifice' can't be matched

As we head for war with Iraq, Americans should reflect and be grateful for combat sacrifices made by our veterans, such as Sen. Daniel Inouye (lost an arm), Sen. John McCain (lost six years of his life in a POW camp), former Sen. Bob Kerrey (lost a leg) and former Sen. Max Cleland (lost both legs and an arm).

However, we veterans are most impressed by the sacrifices of Vietnam-era veteran George W. Bush, who lost his memory for nearly a whole year concerning where he was and what he was doing from mid-1972 to mid-1973 when he was supposed to be serving in the Texas Air National Guard.

Loss of limbs in combat and POW camps pale in comparison with our president's unique personal sacrifice. We are fortunate to have such a selfless and patriotic man leading us to war.


Riser, of Atlanta, is a veteran of Desert Storm.

I always love it when I see a reference to AWOL BUSH in a major newspaper. Of course, it's ALWAYS a reader, never an Editor. And the chance of CNN telling America the truth about our AWOL-during-wartime (p)Resident is nil. But word is spreading, nonetheless.

In any country with a FREE PRESS, every citizen would know this simple (and proven) fact. We would have been told BEFORE that sham "election" --- you know, the one AWOL BUSH lost?
Behind the Great Divide By PAUL KRUGMAN

There has been much speculation why Europe and the U.S. are suddenly at such odds. Is it about culture? About history? But I haven't seen much discussion of an obvious point: We have different views partly because we see different news.


So why don't other countries see the world the way we do? News coverage is a large part of the answer. Eric Alterman's new book, "What Liberal Media?" doesn't stress international comparisons, but the difference between the news reports Americans and Europeans see is a stark demonstration of his point. At least compared with their foreign counterparts, the "liberal" U.S. media are strikingly conservative — and in this case hawkish.

I'm not mainly talking about the print media. There are differences, but the major national newspapers in the U.S. and the U.K. at least seem to be describing the same reality.

Most people, though, get their news from TV — and there the difference is immense. The coverage of Saturday's antiwar rallies was a reminder of the extent to which U.S. cable news, in particular, seems to be reporting about a different planet than the one covered by foreign media.

What would someone watching cable news have seen? On Saturday, news anchors on Fox described the demonstrators in New York as "the usual protesters" or "serial protesters." CNN wasn't quite so dismissive, but on Sunday morning the headline on the network's Web site read "Antiwar rallies delight Iraq," and the accompanying picture showed marchers in Baghdad, not London or New York.

Krugman nails it, as usual. Our "Liberal" media are nothing of the sort. The "mainstream" tilts WAY to the right, and the final and utter destruction of that ridiculous myth is mandatory before there can even be an honest discussion of the issues in America.
Here's an excellent observation from a friend of mine:

Perverse outcome potential. When a million people march, and they hear CNN call it tens of thousands, then they will conclude that CNN falsifies news. They are personally involved. These venal corrupt fucks don't realize that it is credibility that they are selling. Without that they are nothing. They are nothing. Now the million people who marched realize it.

If they can't report the marches accurately, anything they have to say about the war is suspect, too. They just qualified for a Darwin Award.

That is exactly right. The Presstitutes at CNN can't seem to mouth the word "MILLIONS", instead, when they bother to mention them at all, referring to "thousands of protesters". This is clearly a lie, one intended to downplay the truly MASSIVE and historic events of last weekend. The trouble is, all those MILLIONS of people who went to the gatherings now KNOW for a FACT that CNN is lying to them.

Keep digging, CNN.
Thanks to everyone on your CNN Boycott suggestions! Here are a few excerpts:

If all the anti-war factions (all of whom have been given short shrift by cnn) were to be mobilized we could at least create a story damning to cnn and perhaps even keep their ratings down, which after all is their lifes'-blood. If move-on and notinourname got in on this and we were able to put out some full page ads in some of the larger papers (assuming any of them would run these) we could create a huge groundswell. After the war begins most of the anti-war crowd will feel helpless and hopeless and this will be a pro-active way to continue the fight against what many see as a conduit for the current administrations rhetoric and propoganda. -- J.T.

I suggest you list all the sponsers you note on CNN. Then set up a sample letter with the address set up so people can download it and send it. -- Clark

You asked for suggestions for organizing a boycott of CNN: Get BartCop interested in promoting your site! He is almost ready to go on air, and would probably like a 'signature' item or two. We both know he's going to have so many issues to plug - but I think he's going to focus on the media whores, at least at first. If people know there are a number of people out there who are actively organizing protests and boycotts at a number of different areas of the same problem, they might get the picture that the whole deal is crooked, and if we want to make things honest again, we're going to have to do some heavy lifting for a while. Cleaning the whole lot out would be a good start. -- Tom

I have written CNN several times in the past few weeks asking why they are not reporting particualr stories, etc. I have yet to get a response. I am fed up -I would like to write all their advertisers to let them know I am boycotting them and why. -- A.P.

I would boycott CNN AND Fox and promote MSNBC. They are the lowest in the ratings and have cancelled liberal Donahue but Chris Matthews is against the war and they often have Buchanan on -- he's against the war too. It's not perfect but by promoting one against the other -- using the same tactics as take back the media complaining that CNN and FOX represent one point of view and distort in favor of pro war factions maybe you can get some advertisers to pull off CNN and Fox and advertise on the networks or on MSNBC. -- J.D.