Sorry for the slow posting -- I'm away on vacation at a place where the Internet is more akin to a gravel road. --RK

He ain't kiddin'. President Bush: "Reconciliation is difficult in a country that has been tortured and divided by a tyrant." (I assume that he's talking about Hussein here Innocent - ed.)

13 scariest Americans (not named Karl Rove) Old Trout magazine treats us to a list of the 13 scariest Americans. They must have had a hard time making the list so exclusive — give me five minutes in the lobby of Fox News on a Monday morning and I'd be over the limit. Even so, there's more scary monsters here than you'll find in a Scooby Doo marathon.

Evil insurance execs, creepy corporate snoops, and the wicked witch of the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Dubya favorite Edith Hollan Jones: "During arguments in the case the woman brought against her employers (Waltman v. International Paper), Jones purportedly commented that the behavior of the man who had pinched the woman's breasts wasn't so objectionable since he later apologized. And, added the judge, at least she hadn't been raped." If you're easily frightened, don't click on this link.

The prince of darkness, himself Cheney: Water-boarding is fine. "It's a no-brainer for me." The House ethics committee investigation is plowing ahead with their investigation of the Mark Foley scandal. But there's ample reason to wonder: why should we trust these guys, anyway? Bigotry lives So Tennessee senate candidate Bob Corker (R) says he's all bent out of shape about that RNC 'Harold Ford's an Uppity Negro' ad. So how does Corker feel about the radio ad his own campaign is running that features rumbling jungle drums every time the narrator mentions Ford's name? Gimme a break. Gotta love the subtext of President Bush's excuse-making on 'the war'. Every earlier war was easy. Only mine is really tough. Read this. What liberal media? (remember how close the election is) CNN. Frontpage Headline: " One of FBI's 'Most Wanted Terrorists' confirmed dead." And then "An al Qaeda operative wanted in connection with the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings was killed in April in Pakistan, American officials have confirmed." Hmmm. Guy involved in the embassy bombings killed in April. And it's October. Okay. That's an easy one. No! Media Matters: Will news organizations that obligingly aired the RNC ad free of charge treat the Democrats' ad the same way?

Bill Maher looks ahead to 08 Maher was on Scarborough Country last night and talked about Bush's incompetence, the labeling of Nancy Pelosi as an "arch-liberal" and Barack Obama's 2008 aspirations. Video WMP | Video MOV I agree with Bill that someone like Tom Delay is far more extreme right than someone like Nancy Pelosi is left. Conservatives like Bill O'Reilly and Newt Gingrich try to paint (read: smear) Pelosi as some sort of screaming liberal with "San Francisco values" (whatever that means) but the fact is her "first 100 hours" agenda is very much in line with mainstream America. (Read the rest of this story…)

What liberal media? Part II The newly minted, Fox-style Conservative ABC is off to a great start:


In a report on how recent campaigns advertisements are "getting ugly," ABC News, unable to point to a single instance of "nasty" attacks from Democratic candidates or their supporters, suggested it is only a matter of time before "the left" begins to "unleash its garbage as well." ABC News offered no evidence to back up its allegation that Democrats might soon resort to distasteful, negative advertising.

ABC News had no problem documenting ads, currently airing in campaign across the country, attacking Democrats, including one from the Republican National Committee about Democratic Tennessee Senate candidate Harold Ford Jr. In it, an actress playing a ditzy blonde bimbo says: "I met Harold at the Playboy party. ... Harold, call me." Critics, including one prominent Republican, have called the ad borderline racist.

At the conclusion of its report on attack ads, ABC News insisted that "Democrats aren't necessarily running clean campaigns." Unable to cite any examples, ABC News reported, "As the races tighten in the next couple of weeks, the left will likely unleash its garbage as well."



Mark Halperin is doing a heckuva job. It would've pissed off conservatives for ABC to air the truth -- that Democrats are running clean, fact-based campaigns while the GOP lies, race-baits, and plays the fear card.

Big Tent Dem noted this bit of craziness:


[ABC's The Note Mark] Halperin told O'Reilly that the Right was correct in distrusting the Liberal Media who conspire for ways to make Republicans look bad. Halperin, one of the leading GOP bootlickers in all of the Media has the gall to say that. And of course O'Reilly ate it up. O'Reilly was shocked that someone theoretically sane agreed with his insane conspiracy theory. O`Reilly said, roughly, "So you're saying the liberal Media, like ABC, CBS and the New York Times all work to denigrate Republicans?" And Halperin answers roughly, `we've documented it in our book and we the Media have to work hard these two weeks to regain the trust of conservatives.' Understand what he is saying. The Right will be pleased with ABC's coverage. Which means Dems will be screwed.



Well, it's begun:


[A] recent headline by ABC News:


Hannity: Michael J. Fox Can Be Criticized For Stem Cell Ad

Radio Show Host Says Ad Won't Affect Midterm Elections' Outcome



Why is it "news" that a right-wing pundit thinks Michael J. Fox can be criticized? That isn't news at all. That is aiding Hannity's punditry, thinly disguised as news. It has no more value than a headline stating that Kos believes something, followed by an article stating Kos believes something.



ABC has effectively crossed into Fox News territory. (Think Progress has video.)

Corruption watch Rep. Porter (R-NV) won't release the phone logs and scheduling records he says will disprove charges he made illegal campaign fundraising calls. Rules of engagement Vanity Fair offers an article you really should read on the Haditha killings. It's a long article, but very powerful. While there have been some that look to point fingers and place blame all over the place, journalist William Langewiesche makes it clear that Haditha and the environment that led to those horrors is by no means isolated. Kill the messenger...uh....headline writer Look at this headline and article from CNN. The headline is "Michael J. Fox ads for Democrats spark backlash." The article, though, tells a different story. The article reports the existence of the ads, follows with Limbaugh's criticisms, then quotes doctors saying that Rush is completely full of it. Then the piece goes on to discuss why the ad is powerful and a bit more about Fox's career since going into semi-retirement because of his illness. The article, which is from the AP, completely belies the message of the headline.

Holy cow. This is a VERY big deal. If you are a Maryland resident, you may want to get on the phone right now to find out from your Secretary of State how they can assure clean elections. Baltimore Sun:

Diebold Election Systems Inc. expressed alarm and state election officials contacted the FBI yesterday after a former legislator received an anonymous package containing what appears to be the computer code that ran Maryland's polls in 2004. Cheryl C. Kagan, a longtime critic of Maryland's elections chief, says the fact that the computer disks were sent to her - along with an unsigned note criticizing the management of the state elections board - demonstrates that Maryland's voting system faces grave security threats [..]In the wake of the problems, Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and other politicians renewed their call to jettison the equipment. The governor has urged state voters to request absentee ballots, although use of the paper alternative raises different concerns about fraud. A spokesman for the governor said the apparent distribution of the voting-machine software was troubling. Read on…

Tipster MrEMan reminds us of the problems experienced during the September primary and BradBlog points us to a letter by Governor Erlich expressing a loss of faith as far back as February of this year. And yet, to the disadvantage of all voters, nothing has been done.

Supporting our (starving) troops at home San Diego Union-Tribune:

The women and children who formed a line at Camp Pendleton last week could have been waiting for a child-care center to open or Disney on Ice tickets to go on sale. Instead, they were waiting for day-old bread and frozen dinners packaged in slightly damaged boxes. These families are among a growing number of military households in San Diego County that regularly rely on donated food. As the Iraq war marches toward its fourth anniversary, food lines operated by churches and other nonprofit groups are an increasingly valuable presence on military bases countywide. Leaders of the charitable groups say they're scrambling to fill a need not seen since World War II. Read on…

Wonderful. We'll ask the troops to put their lives on the line in the Middle East, but Congress can't pony up a little more cash so their families at home can afford to eat. Meanwhile, how much has Congress given to Halliburton and its subsidiaries in no-bid contracts for Iraq?

Rep. Ralph "She-wanted-to-do-nude-dancing" Hall (R-TX) shows how not to handle a scandal. Be sure to check out Hall's explanation for how he was just doing his part to fight the Cold War by visiting the Marianas... in 1996.

Keith Olbermann. His "Special Comments" are always a treat to watch because they have such a perfect rhythm. He starts by teasing his target (usually President Bush) with snarky derision. But then, slowly, his words become daggers so sharp that by the time he says "Good night and good luck," even the dog is ducking behind the sofa. I'm glad he's on our side.

Barney Frank. The Massachusetts Congressman reduced a smirking, guffawing Steve Moore to a seething, squirming blob of Republican goo on Real Time with Bill Maher Friday night. Firedoglake has a must-watch example here. If that was a preview of how Frank will handle a committee chairmanship if we take back the House November 7th, the noble opposition has good reason to be scared out of their polyester knickers.

Bush officials taking private jets at taxpayer expense. A new report by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) “reveals that Bush agency heads have taken 125 trips to over 300 locations aboard private jets, helicopters, and other aircraft at taxpayer expense.” Taxpayer-funded travel on private jets “intensified in 2004 when President Bush was campaigning for reelection,” and “much of this travel was concentrated in electoral battleground states.”

Listen to our troops While Bush is flapping his jowls taking up valuable air time, a truly valuable commodity these days that could be invested into discussion of killer spinach or missing Barbie Dolls, check this out:

Guardian--A US marine will today go public with his opposition to the war in Iraq as part of a campaign to petition Congress to bring US troops home. Sergeant Liam Madden - who was against the war even before being sent to Iraq with his unit in late 2004 - is one of more than 100 soldiers on active duty who have organised the petition drive through a website called Appeal for Redress. The move, which reflects growing US domestic opposition to the war, could present the Bush administration with a serious problem if it undermines morale of already hard-pressed armed forces in Iraq.

Sean Hannnity, our ....uh....friend? All of a sudden Sean Hannity is feeling kind of bad because of the way he has attacked and smeared liberals and Democrats all these years, He's decided to speak directly from his heart and offer us some really good advice for November's election. I feel so honored. And we're all ears. Media Matters:

On the October 18 edition of his nationally syndicated radio program, Fox News host Sean Hannity encouraged Democratic voters to "stay home on Election Day," adding that, "your vote doesn't matter anyway." He added that Democrats should not turn out to vote "for the sake of the nation" because Democrats' votes "won't change who occupies the White House" and Democratic "candidates have absolutely no idea how to win the war on terrorism."…read on Audio-WMP (via MM)

Yep, you got it. He graciously tells us that it's not worth our time. I thought the reason we need to stay in Iraq was because of all the Iraqis that voted. Apparently that same democracy doesn't apply to America. That's very big of him. The meeting with Bush and his talk show pals sure has fired them all up. Hannity is also working with Blackwell on another smear campaign.

Smacking down neo-cons Bill Maher was on fire last night with New Rules. He closed the show with a four minute diatribe aimed at the neocons at PNAC and the Heritage Foundation for being disastrously wrong on every foreign policy prediction they've made regarding Iraq and the GWOT. Video-WMP Video-QT

No evidence of voter fraud People for the American Way:

Right-wing members of Congress and state legislators have been passing onerous laws that make it harder for citizens to vote. Despite erecting barriers to the ballot box and disenfranchising voters, they've claimed these laws are necessary to stop rampant voter fraud.

Thanks to a press leak, it is now public that the US Elections Assistance Commission (EAC) commissioned a report to find out about voter fraud. According to USA Today, the EAC's report shows that there is no evidence that significant numbers of voters are lying about their identity at the polls, voting twice, or voting in the name of dead people. Let me repeat that: NO EVIDENCE. (Read the rest of this story…)

The lost year in Iraq From

In the first weeks after the statue of Saddam Hussein fell, a group of young American bureaucrats led by Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III set off to establish democracy in Iraq. "We had an ambitious goal," Bremer tells FRONTLINE, "to try to bring better government to Iraq and help them rebuild their economy [and] their country." One year later, as Bremer made a secret exit to evade insurgent attacks, the group left behind a thriving insurgency, economic collapse and much of its idealism. "Our grand initiative there [was] to bring democracy to Iraq," says Rajiv Chandrasekaran, former Baghdad bureau chief for The Washington Post. Instead, says Chandrasekaran, "we were leaving with our tail between our legs."

You can watch the program in it's entirety at If you want to know the truth behind what went wrong during the most crucial time period of the Iraq War and why, you must see this.

The sort of idiot who gives a lot of people a bad name There have been so many lunatic ideas coming out of the mouths of insane people lately that I'm surprised I found something new and exciting. Want to protect your kids at school? Arm them with text book shields: via Right Wing Watch

Bill Crozier, a Union City Republican going against incumbent Democrat Sandy Garrett, said he believes old textbooks could be used to stop bullets shot from weapons wielded by school intruders. If elected, he said he would put thick used textbooks under every desk for students to use in self-defense. (video ) "The bullet did not penetrate the book." Video-WMP

He seems to think that kids will be able to block an assailant armed with an AK-47 by shielding themselves. Ummm….this isn't TJ Hooker, I'm not trying to rain on his parade, but I think a nut might be able to aim at a few different spots. I'm just saying.

Dewine just sealed his fate against Sherrod Brown even though the GOP has already given up on him.

The Plain Dealer: The Republican Party last night refused to cancel commercials that claim Sherrod Brown was a longtime tax scofflaw - even though the state of Ohio says the ad's claim is untrue.

Video-WMP Video-QT Dewine: "The ad Sherrod is true. Read my lips. The ad is true." Ummm, no it's not. The lying liars at the RNC can't help themselves.

We're Number 1! We're Number 1! Wait…what's that you say? We're Number FIFTY-THREE?!?!?!?! Behind Bosnia, Serbia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic???? But…but…the terrorists hate us for our freedoms, don't they?

"Our liberty cannot be guarded but by the freedom of the press, nor that be limited without danger of losing it."

–Thomas Jefferson to John Jay, 1786.

Submitted by RKing on