Prof. Lance DeHaven-Smith

You may recall the article I circulated/posted recently, about the new report by this professor, offering further confirmation of the fact that Gore won Florida in 2000. It’s a very solid piece of work. I wrote to him to thank him, and he replied with this great email, which includes some references to other of his writings.

MCM

Dear Professor Miller,

Thank you for your thoughtful letter. Your encouragement means a great deal to me, because I know what an outstanding scholar you are and how important you have been to the struggling movement for election reform in the United States. I have read with great interest and much admiration all of your books, including not only your most recent (Fooled Again), but also Cruel and Unusual and The Bush Dyslexicon. The latter was very helpful to me in the early stages of the Bush Administration when I was first trying to make sense of the 2000 election and the failure in its wake investigate possible crimes by election officials in Florida and to truly reform election laws in Florida and nationally. Your book raised my awareness of what kind of person George W. Bush really is. Like most people in the United States, I had initially dismissed Bush’s bizarre comments, verbal slips, and word-mangling as humorous but unimportant. The Bush Dyslexicon opened my eyes to the true meaning of Bush’s manner of (mis)speaking.

I read Fooled Again just a few weeks ago. It’s a great read and a great work of scholarship. I am amazed at your ability to assemble and synthesize so much information. I am even more amazed that you can take all of the details and complexities of recent elections and election reforms, and make them so clear and understandable to the average person without losing any of the nuances. American democracy is fortunate to have such a gifted scholar on its side.

I was especially impressed by the insights of Fooled Again into the elections here in Florida. I study Florida government and politics, and I have been following the state’s “election reforms” very closely, so I know of what I speak. Jeb Bush, Katherine Harris, Glenda Hood, and others in Jeb’s administration have been using very sophisticated and devious tactics to corrupt election administration, but most journalists and not a few scholars have failed to recognize what is going on. I have been trying to arouse public concern about election tampering in my public speaking and in a few op-ed articles in state newspapers, but it has been difficult to arouse much public interest because the Republican machine in Florida has been very effective in stifling dissent, putting out disinformation, silencing leakers, etc. So when I saw that you had written a new book and that it was on the 2004 election, I hoped that you would expose the situation to a national audience. I was not disappointed. You got it all-the many errors produced by touch-screen machines, the political connections of the touch-screen companies, the far-flung program of voter suppression, the use of technicalities to throw out voter registration forms, the flawed felon-disenfranchisement program, the Governor’s lies about it, and much more. You presented a thorough and fully documented case that officials at the highest levels of Florida government have been working against the electorate rather than for it.

Thank you again for your letter and also for posting information about my research on your blog. You may also be interested in a couple of op-ed articles expressing my doubts about the official election results in 2004. “Show Us the Votes” was published in the Tallahassee Democrat shortly after the election. “Massive Fraud” appeared in the Miami Herald early in 2005.

Sincerely,
Lance d-S

Abramoff, Bob Ney and ELECTIONGATE!

The Soon-to-be-Indicted Rep. Bob Ney of Ohio’s Connection To Electoral Fraud
The Dots Connect Between Abramoff, Ohio 2004 Election Smokescreen and Ney’s Former Staffer Revealed to be on Diebold’s Payroll While Working for White House Law Firm
All the While as HAVA — America’s ‘Election Reform’ Bill — is Used for Political Payoff in the Bargain…

There’s been a great deal of speculation over the last several days, particularly in the light of Jack Abramoff’s recent guilty pleas, concerning the connection of Congressman Bob Ney (R-OH) to Election Fraud in Ohio, and indeed, vis a vis his stewardship and authoring of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) back in 2001 and 2002. The heavy-handed tactics he has taken since then in order to keep the flawed act from being changed in any way over the years, along with the great lengths he’s gone to in order to keep the nation’s eyes off of massive electile dysfunction in Ohio and elsewhere since 2004 may finally soon get the attention it all properly deserves.

Connections revealed by The BRAD BLOG between thousands of dollars paid by Voting Machine Company, Diebold, Inc. to Ney’s former chief of staff David DiStefano just scratch the surface of the direct relationships between various monied and political interests to Ohio’s big man on Capitol Hill.

And as the spotlight of corruption has finally begun to shine bright and clear in the Mainstream Media onto Ney, renewed interest in his support and authorship of HAVA itself — along with the connections between that legislation, chicanery in Ohio’s Election, Abramoff and several other GOP operative and lobbying firms’ merry band of pay-for-players — are helping to bubble up towards the surface a few previously overlooked, but important, details that may finally now receive the attention they always deserved from the Mainstream Media…

Read more.

Question Authority

From Suburban Guerrilla:

You know, I really shouldn’t complain when public radio and TV stations do things like this, because almost invariably, it leads to a wave of donations from readers who say, “That’s it, I’d rather give you the money than them, I’ll never support public radio again.”

Read more.

Is Philly public radio censoring ads?

Attytood asks:

What do you think about this radio ad?

Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book “Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”. In November, 2004, some 8 million votes were switched or trashed in Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and many other states – 8 million votes, which is more than twice the number by which Bush supposedly won re-election.

Read more.

More on WHYY and NPR

Dear Mr. Miller,

Someone forwarded me an e-mail about how WHYY had blocked you from buying an underwriting message. I want you to know that I had a similar experience with that station. In 1999, their then general manager, agreed to air a portion of my annual radio broadcast about homelessness. A few days later, she renegged and denied even having made the commitment. I might add that in the nine years I’ve been doing the show, three other station have renegged, and all of them have been major NPR stations. This kind of thing has never happened to me anywhere else.

In 2002, I wrote a couple of columns about this phenomenon, and I’ve pasted-on the 2nd of them below. I hope you wil find it of interest.

By the way, in our case, we’re doing better and better with NPR stations as they realize the roof doesn’t cave in when one of them airs us. But someone promoting a book or trying to get coverage for a news story would not be able to invest the years it has taken us to get this far.

Sincerely,

Jeremy Weir Alderson
Director, Homelessness Marathon
http://www.homelessnessmarathon.org

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“The NPR Nobody Knows”

In my last column I suggested boycotting the pledge drives of those NPR stations that ignore the poor (of course, the ones doing a good job in this regard should be supported, instead). And while there are surely many factors forming the NPR ethos, I did imply that sometimes there may be an inverse correlation between the size of a station’s budget and the size of its soul — a point I’d like to expand on.

If you go to NPR’s web site and search the archive of its national broadcasts (“Morning Edition,” “Talk of the Nation,” “All Things Considered,” etc.), you’ll find that 339 stories mentioned poverty, which is more than twice as many as the 147 which mentioned “wealth.” I don’t think, though, that this is because NPR’s focus is more on the poor than the rich. Rather, I think that NPR so thoroughly sees through the eyes of wealth that it’s just a matter of not wanting to preen — Noblesse Oblige
and all that.

If poor people really ran NPR, you’d be seeing more stories on wealth than on poverty, and a lot of them would have themes like, “Wealth: How Much Should Rich People Be Allowed To Keep?” Besides, when you look at the details of NPR’s story selection, it’s easy to see the devil in them.

The issue of “Homelessness,” for example, was touched on only a total of 30 times on every NPR network show put together, going back to at least 1994. That’s the same number of stories as were done on “Martha Stewart” or “jewelry.” And we can say with a certain mathematical precision that NPR paid more attention to “aliens” (188 stories), “dogs” (212 stories) and “fish” (490 stories) than it did to “homeless people” (27 stories). Similarly, NPR featured 81 stories touching on “mansions”
and 73 on “castles,” but only 47 on “public housing” and 13 on “homeless shelters.”

Just by some kawinky-dink, four out of NPR’s five highest paid staffers are corporate marketers, according to NPR’s IRS 990 form. In 2000, these employees were: Bob Edwards, senior host, $242,411 in salary and benefits; John Gilmore, Director Corporate Marketing, $240,801; Kent Martin, National Representative Corporate Marketing, $232,734; Blake Truitt, Manager Corporate Marketing, $205,238 and Connie Mongroo, Co-Director Corporate Marketing, $191,299 (does Mongroo make less than employees with seemingly lower titles because she’s a woman?). Kevin Klose, NPR’s President and CEO, was paid a measly $228,322 in salary and benefits, but then again, he also received an additional $76,665 for his “expense account and other allowances.”

The pay scales are also very high at some of the NPR member stations, even though this isn’t a field where you have to pay through the nose to get talent. There’s a whole universe of people working at college, Christian, community, Pacifica and NPR-affiliated stations who are long on dedication and short on material rewards. The “Homelessness Marathon,” for instance, started on WEOS in Geneva, NY, an NPR affiliate where the entire operating budget, including equipment and the G.M.’s salary, was under $100,000 (though as a college licensee, it did get free studio space, heat and light, worth some additional thousands). In 1999, KUSP, the NPR station in Santa Cruz, CA, which, by the way, has done a lot for the marathon, had no employee making over $50,000, and the broadcast director of Texas Public Radio, which, by the way, has done nothing for the marathon, made $53,978.

Compare those figures with some from NPR stations on the other side of the class divide (all figures from 1999 or 2000):
Employee Title Station/Org. Salary & Benefits
————————————————————————-
Laura Walker Pres. & CEO WNYC, New York $361,119
W. Marrazzo Pres. & CEO WHYY, Philadelphia* $314,415
H. Becton, Jr. Pres. & GM WGBH, Boston* $286,087
George Miles Pres. & CEO WQED, Pittsburgh* $234,727
Mary Bitterman Pres. & CEO KQED, San Fran.* $219,062
William Kling President Minn. Pub. Radio $185,063
Maynard Orme Pres. & CEO Oregon Pub. Broad.* $177,952

(* = broadcasts television too)

You may be able to find out the top salaries at a public station near you by going to www.guidestar.org and seeing if it’s listed or by writing to the station and requesting a copy of its 990 form. What that form says makes no difference to the station’s moral obligation to serve all the public, including poor people. But stations that pay hefty salaries may be particularly vulnerable to a campaign demanding they be interested in lifestyles besides their own.

I’m concerned that, because I’ve raised this issue, there may be prejudice against the “Homelessness Marathon” at some NPR stations, and surely any group that challenges one of these imperious behemoths will have to worry about losing valuable coverage. But I am reminded of the lunch-counter sit-ins of the civil rights movement. They were protesting inside the very establishments where they hoped to eat.

NPR newsrooms are the new lunch counters. Let’s demand to be served.

Censorship at NPR

The following comes from Josh Mitteldorf. He’s an election reform activist in Philadelphia, who tried to buy ad-time on WHYY-FM, the local NPR affiliate, to help sell Fooled Again. As you’ll see from his account, the station first okayed the deal, and then, after having read the copy, arbitrarily refused to run the ads.

As Philadelphia goes, so goes NPR from coast to coast. Although I’ve been on many NPR shows several times over the years, none of them will have me on to talk about this book. For instance, “The Connection,” a national show broadcast from Boston, had had me on two or three times before this book came out. This time, the show’s producer just refused outright to have me come back on–even after the show’s host, Jack Beatty, tried to get her to relent. (Jack is an old friend of mine.)

So let’s be clear what this is all about. It’s not because the book’s “not new” (it came out just two months ago), or because I didn’t do a good job as a guest on “The Connection” (after all, they’d asked me back), that I can’t get on NPR to talk about this book. (I can’t get on any PBS shows, either.) It’s because the subjects of election fraud and the dire need for electoral reform are now
officially verboten on what we still call “public radio.”

MCM

Mark,

I just got off the phone with Tim Roll of WHYY radio, the largest NPR station in Philadelphia. I had submitted to him last week ad copy for your book. When I spoke to him last week, he had assured me that there was no censorship in accepting these spots, and explicitly told me the few rules that we had to follow: we must not tell people explicitly to vote for a candidate or buy a product, and must not state that any product is the “best” or make claims that compare it to another product.

But this morning he told me that “unfortunately” the copy was rejected by his supervisors. The only objective reason he offered was that the book was “not new and has already been out for awhile”. I suggested to him that Steve Freeman’s book on a similar theme would be coming out in the near future, and I might approach them again with an ad for that book. He replied that they couldn’t accept ads for just any book – and raised the analogy of Mein Kampf ! I thought that said a lot about how this issue is viewed by the corporate media. A sympathetic reading of their policy might be that they are excessively sensitive to the obligation not to undermine public order, or incite their listeners to acts of hatred or rebellion. A less sympathetic reading is that they’re shills of the Bush agenda.

I raised the issue of editorial control by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and he claimed that WHYY accepts no such control. He volunteered the information that only 9% of the station’s funding comes from the Federal government, far lower than some rural NPR stations with smaller listener bases. He said he was all in favor of letting go of that last 9%, so that the station would be fully independent, but said flatly that this would have no impact on their standards for ad copy.

Below, for your reference, is the email to WHYY, including the proposed copy.
-Josh

Hi, Tim-

Here are 5 different versions of the ad copy, to be run twice each during some week in the near future. We’ve talked about the $145 rate for each 30 second spot, and you’ve told me the ads will run at random times through the broadcast day.

Version 1:
Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book
“Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”
Read how HAVA – the so-called “Help America Vote Act” – actually helps to hide the way our votes are counted, so that verification of election results is becoming impossible in more and more communities, including Philadelphia and the 5-county area.
“Fooled Again”, by Mark Crispin Miller.

————————————————————————-

Version 2:
Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book “Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”
In November, 2004, some 8 million votes were switched or trashed in Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and many other states – 8 million votes, which is more than twice the number by which Bush supposedly won re-election.
Read copious details and full documentation in this new book, “Fooled Again”, by Mark Crispin Miller.

————————————————————————-

Version 3:
Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book “Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”
Read about Nathan Sproul, the man hired by the Republicans to sign up new Democratic voters – then throw away their registrations. This was a coast-to-coast operation for which Sproul’s organization was paid millions.
Details in this thoroughly-documented new book,”Fooled Again”, by Mark Crispin Miller.

————————————————————————-

Version 4:
Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book “Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”
President Bush claims that Americans are dying in Iraq in order to spread democracy. But read how the Republican National Committee has subverted democracy and corrupted elections right here in the USA.
Details in this new book, “Fooled Again”, by Mark Crispin Miller.

————————————————————————-

Version 5:
Brought to you by Mark Crispin Miller’s book “Fooled Again – how the Right stole the 2004 election, and why they’ll steal the next one, too (unless we stop them)”
Not enough voting machines – in Democratic precincts only. Machines that systematically turned Kerry votes into Bush votes. Some 8 million votes switched nationwide, delivering Bush his quote re-election. Read the news that the press has skirted.
Details and full documentation in this new book, “Fooled Again”, by Mark Crispin Miller.
————————————————————————————

-Josh Mitteldorf

Mapping It Out

The mysteries surrounding ACVR as well as its various connections to highly partisan groups, to some of the members of the commission and to some of the witnesses and speakers are so complex that RAW STORY had to create a visual representation of entanglements in order to better clarify on how this group may have developed. (Click on map below to see in full)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com

This map is the product of months of research by RAW STORY as the result of several different articles, including: Social Security “fright mail” funded GOP leader’s trips to UK, Asia; How the House Republican leadership teamed with power lobbyist Jack Abramoff, and cashed in; and Controversy swirls around Carter-Baker Election Reform Commission, stacked with GOP hands; Carter center denies role.

Good news from Pennsylvania

GREAT NEWS FOR PENNSYLVANIANS

The Coalition for Voting Integrity is pleased to announce good news for the citizens of Pennsylvania: Along with all Pa. counties,the Bucks County Commissioners now have a Voter-Verifiable Paper Ballot (VVPB) machine to choose from. On January 6, the State of Pennsylvania officially certified its first electronic machine with paper ballot capabilities: the precinct-based optical scanner.

CVI has stressed the monumental importance of having a voting process that allows our vote to be accurately counted, recorded securely, and have the ability to be recounted or audited. The precinct-based optical scanner, in our judgment, meets these criteria. It is also very easy to understand and use: as with standardized tests, the voter blackens in a circle and the vote is counted in the scanner at the precinct. No wireless or telephone transmission of the vote to a central processing center is needed. The actual ballot itself is retained for recounts or audits. The optical scanners are also economical, both to buy and maintain. They are a reliable, mature technology used successfully in US elections for many years.

However optical scanners along with other electronic voting machines have problems as explained by our Federal non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) which recently confirmed that “significant concerns about the security and reliability of electronic voting systems” have been raised. Nearly every aspect of any electronic machine including touchscreens and optical scanners , is prone to major problems.

Thus. the Coalition for Voting Integrity supports voter verified paper ballots and voting machines to support them. We must be able to prove out vote CVI is not alone in supporting VVPB’s. Our own State Senator Conti has introduced the SB977 requiring a voter-verifiable paper ballot, Congressman Fitzpatrick supports the similar HR550, a number of Bucks municipalities are signing resolutions in support, and seven of our former commissioners recently announced their strong support. Now voters should expect that the current County Commissioners throughout Pa. choose a machine with VVPB capabilities, now that the option is at last available.

We ask everyone in every County throughout Pa. call your County Commissioners and demand that your electronic voting machine have this crucial voter verified paper ballot . The vote belongs to us. We want proof that our vote has been counted!

www.coalitionforvotingintegrity.org