Bush/Cheney's "Recount Fund"

The slush fund to which Harriet “Justice” Miers gave $5,000….

Review of the Bush-Cheney 2000 Recount Fund and 527 Disclosure Law
As of July 26, 2002

The Bush-Cheney 2000, Inc-Recount Fund, created shortly after the November 2000 election to pay for the campaign’s legal and political activities in Florida and other contested areas, evaded a soft money campaign finance disclosure law for 18 months. The recount fund’s trustees did not file required disclosure forms until 3:25 p.m. on July 15, 2002 – meeting the deadline for an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) “amnesty” program to avoid millions of dollars in potential fines by less than nine hours.

The recount fund was required by law to file a statement of organization (known as an 8871 form) and make at least four and perhaps as many as six periodic filings detailing contributions and expenditures (8872 forms) under a “527 group disclosure” law passed in July 2000 (PL 106-230). 527 groups, named after the section of the Internal Revenue Code that governs them, can raise unlimited amounts of soft money and primarily exist to influence elections.

Read more.


"We don't give out names and I can't tell you why"

Bolton’s schoolyard-level diplomacy
09:33 AM EDT on Tuesday, October 4, 2005

IMAGINE we’re back in October 1962, at the height of the Cold War, in the thick of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The world’s survival is at stake, threatened by the real possibility of nuclear war between the two superpowers, neither one prepared to concede an inch.

Then imagine this scene: The terribly tense Security Council debate is under way between the Soviet and U.S. representatives to the United Nations. Suddenly, just after Soviet Ambassador Valerian Zorin begins to speak, his American counterpart, Adlai Stevenson, rises and walks out of the room, leaving two note takers behind. Imagine further that the pretext for the walk-out is Zorin’s supposedly “terrorist” youth and the Soviet refusal to allow foreign inspectors into its nuclear facilities.

No doubt you would find such undiplomatic behavior at best shortsighted — at worst, purile, provocative, and dangerous. No doubt even some of the most anti-communist journalists would criticize American arrogance and immaturity.

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Miers is Bush's longtime consigliere

Miers possesses qualities important to Bush

WASHINGTON – (KRT) – Perhaps the clearest measure of President Bush’s trust in Harriet Miers is the fact that he hired her to do opposition research when he decided to run for governor of Texas. On him.

Miers, an accomplished corporate lawyer from Dallas with a reputation for discretion and for loyalty to Bush, may know as much about Bush as anyone outside his family.

So his decision to nominate her Monday to the Supreme Court, while a surprise to many in Washington, in fact fits a pattern of the president turning to those he knows best and trusts the most.

But beyond the overlapping circles of the Bush political machine and the Texas legal community, Miers is something of a mystery.

In introducing her during an Oval Office ceremony, Bush said that “she has devoted her life to the rule of law and the cause of justice.”

Read more.


What's Harry Reid been smoking?

David Frum on Harriet Miers:

“In the White House that hero worshipped the president, Miers was distinguished by the intensity of her zeal: She once told me that the president was the most brilliant man she had ever met.”


More on the Dems' denial

From Jonathan Simon:


I very much doubt that Elaine is correct in her specific suspicion that the Dems have been doing computerized vote rigging themselves in the primaries. For one thing I’m pretty sure Diebold and ES&S won’t dance for the Dems. For another, if the Dems had the capacity to rig the primaries, they would have had the capacity to counter-rig the general election computers and we saw no eivdence of that. Much more likely that the Republicans, or the right, found an opportunity to cherry pick their opponents in places like Florida (for Jeb ) and in the presidential primaries. If you own the voting machines for all elections, why draw the line at elections in which “your” candidates are participants?

I think Jim is closer to the mark with his Dumb Dems theory. But Elaine has a general point that incumbency, even in the minority, is very sensitive to any systemic upheaval, and the Dems have been highly protective of their minority status, allowing their power to be eroded gradually rather than risking any radical change. A quick visit to Washington, especially a day or two in the House and Senate Office Bldgs., will give you a feel for what I mean: we may think in terms of winning votes on major policy initiatives and appointments, they think in terms of corner offices, desirable floors, and constituent services. These they are allowed to keep and, believe it or not, this sop makes them very unwilling to rock the boat.

The other missing piece is the awesome power of the MSM and spin: once the “sanity” line is drawn (“oh come on, that could never happen here”) it becomes very hard to cross without paying the ultimate price of marginalization and ridicule. Consider that Gore had a very obviously winning argument on the facts in 2000 and was nonetheless painted effectively as a “sore loser” and an impediment to the stability and security of the nation–and this was before 9-11.

Any individual Democrat that attempted to give serious play to the rigged elections charge would simply be Gored, unless they could bring forth the hard, indisputable evidence. The beauty of computerized vote rigging is that this evidence is very difficult to produce. Indirect evidence, such as exit polls, can be spun into oblivion. Keep in mind always that the impact of the truth is feared to be devastating (as with personal matters, the supposedly dreadful truth casts a shadow much larger than itself), to the point that, like Oedipus, we don’t really want to know. I’d recommend reading a very short story by William Carlos Williams entitled “The Use Of Force.” It’s about a little girl fighting desperately and unknowingly to keep a doctor from prying open her throat to reveal the early signs of diphtheria (fatal, at the time). Gives a good feel for what we’re up against.

To call for investigation would do very little good (consider, e.g., Conyers) because the real investigatory muscle is with the Republicans; at best you get a whitewash like Carter-Baker. It would take a full-court press, a political boycott of epic proportions, a united stand of “we won’t play until this shit is cleaned up” to get anywhere, and this is asking way too much of those still seated in power, for whom the system can still be seen to be working. So merrily we roll along, roll along. . . No answer, just an interpretation.–Jonathan


Judy Miller's extreme makeover

Los Amgeles Times
October1, 2005

Who is Judy Miller kidding?

The New York Times reporter needs to write the truth about her involvment in Plamegate.

By Arianna Huffington

Now that Judy Miller has finished testifying, finished spinning for the cameras on the courthouse steps, finished hugging her dog and finished eating that special meal she wanted her husband to prepare, she needs to do what Time reporter Matt Cooper did and immediately publish a full and truthful account of her involvement in Plamegate.

Because what she – and the New York Times’ publisher and editor – have said so far just doesn’t add up.

Read more.


GOP wanted Kerry in '04 (as Nixon wanted McGovern in '72)

From Thom Hartmann:

Dean was the only candidate the Republicans spent money to defeat in the Democratic primaries – over $1 million in the population-tiny but pivotal state of Iowa with the “latte-drinking, Volvo-driving” ads. Why? Because their polling showed that in the general election he could have trounced Bush, whereas Bush had a chance against Kerry or Gephardt. Same as Nixon sending Colson to NH to put drugs into Muskie’s coffee and forge the Canuck letter to make sure that Muskie would lose that primary, because Republican polling showed Muskie could have beaten Nixon but McGovern couldn’t. Republicans have been playing chess for 40 years – deciding who the Democratic candidate will be by intervening in the primaries – while the Dems are playing checkers…



More on the Dems' unwillingness to talk about it

Let me make clear that I do not believe, with Elaine Ermis, that the Republicans fooled with the Democratic primaries (although anything is possible with such a gang in charge).

Rather, I think it worth our while to look into the possibility that Dean was robbed by other Democrats. Certainly it may not be the case. But if it is, it would explain what now appears to be the Democrats’ irrational refusal even to discuss the GOP’s subversion of elections.


Where we're coming from

By Thom Hartmann:

The Founders of this nation represented the first Radical Middle. Back then they called it “being liberal.” As George Washington said, “As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.”

They didn’t want King George or his military or corporate agents snooping in their houses, mails, or private matters; preventing them from organizing together and speaking out in public in protest of government actions; imprisoning them without access to attorneys, due process, or trials by juries of their peers; or reserving rights to himself that they felt should rest with the people or their elected representatives. (They ultimately wrote all of these in the Bill of Rights in our Constitution.)

They also didn’t want giant transnational corporations dominating their lives or their local economies. When, in 1773, King George III signed the Tea Act – a massive tax cut for the British East India Company – they protested this first attempt to WalMart-itize America by preventing the Company’s ships from landing in several cities up and down the eastern seaboard, and boarding and destroying over a million dollars (in today’s money) of tea in the ships that did dock in Boston. This was the beginning, by the Radical Middle, of the American Revolution.

The Radical Middle has always believed in fairness and democracy, and understood that completely unrestrained business activity and massive accumulations of wealth into a very few hands can endanger democratic institutions.

As James Madison said, “There is an evil which ought to be guarded against in the indefinite accumulation of property from the capacity of holding it in perpetuity by corporations. The power of all corporations ought to be limited in this respect. The growing wealth acquired by them never fails to be a source of abuses.” Similarly, John Adams wrote that when “economic power become concentrated in a few hands, then political power flowed to those possessors and away from the citizens, ultimately resulting in an oligarchy or tyranny.”

Thomas Paine, among others, wrote at length about the dangers to a free people of the massive accumulation of wealth, and following the excesses of the Gilded Age – which led to massive corruption of the American government by corporate and wealth-based interests – laws were put into place limiting the size and behavior of corporations (such as the Sherman Anti-Trust Act), and taxing inheritance of the most massive of family estates so that a new hereditary aristocracy wouldn’t emerge in the nation that had thrown off the economic and political oppressions of the hereditary aristocracy of England.

The Radical Middle always believed in the idea of a commons – the things that we all own collectively, and administer the way we want through our elected representatives. Our parks, roads, police, fire, schools, and our government itself. Our ability to vote in fair and transparent elections. Our military and defense. Our systems for protecting our air, water, food, and pharmaceuticals. Our ability to retire in safety if we’ve worked hard and played the game by the rules, and to know that an illness won’t financially wipe us out.

Regardless of electoral politics (since both of the major political parties often overlook these values, and both have become corrupted by wealth and corporate influence), poll after poll shows that the vast majority of Americans embrace the values of the Radical Middle.

In recent years, America has been hijacked by the Radical Right. Corporations now write most of our legislation. Our elected representatives cater to the interests of wealth rather than what is best for the commons we collectively own, or what will sustain that bulwark of democracy known as the middle class. They have, in large part, seized control of our media, wiped out our family farms, and wiped out small, middle-class-owned businesses from our towns and cities. They seek a “merger of corporate and state interests” – a definition Mussolini used for what he called “fascism.”

The Radical Right has even gone so far as to use sophisticated psychological programming tools, like Newt Gingrich’s infamous “word list,” to paint the Radical Middle as some sort of insidious anti-Americanism.

We in the Radical Middle are calling for nothing less than a restoration of democracy, of government of, by, and for We The People, in a world that works for all.


Could this be why so many Dems won't talk about electoral fraud?

Top Democrats, and many Democratic pundits/bloggers, have been strikingly reluctant even to admit, much less discuss, the possibility that Bush & Co. stole the last election. Likewise with the MSM: “There is no story there!” CBS’s Don Hewitt barked on C-SPAN not too long ago–a staunch denial wholly typical of bigfoot media types.

Such willful silence is bizarre, considering (a) the ever-growing wealth of evidence that Bush & Co. were really not elected, and (b) the fact that, if the Democratic Party doesn’t face up to to the dire need for electoral reform, the party will be coming to an end.

Here, from Elaine Ermis, is a simple theory that may well explain the Democrats’ unwillingness to tell it like it is–and thereby save American democracy:

Has anyone looked into the possibility that the Democratic primaries were also tampered with? If you recall Howard Dean had overwhelming support during the debates, but the media “kept insisting” that when the voters go to the polls they are going to vote for Kerry because he “has a better shot at defeating Bush”. Sure enough that is what happened. Now we know whose side the media seems to always be on (or in whose pocket), and don’t you think this would have been a good “rehearsal or trial run” for Diebold et al to “test” their machines (by tampering the votes) and see if anyone would complain or be suspicious about the outcome (having Kerry come out as the winner instead of Howard Dean? Howard Dean had such HUGE support before the primaries that the Bush camp was worried that they could not defeat Howard Dean if he won the primaries, but they knew they could smear John kerry’s record. Thats why the press kept making howard Dean seem like a risk because he was a “hothead, etc” It seemed VERY important to the Bush camp that Kerry win the primaries because they were afraid of Howard Deans large following. That is why the press kept “insisting” that when it comes down to voting the voters will turn on Dean and go with a “safer” bet (Kerry)? The media was trying to plant the idea of why Kerry will win the primaries so it won’t be so “shocking” that Dean loses and then no one would be suspicious of voter fraud? I really hope you have someone look into this possibility.