October 30, 2010 - The Constantine Report    
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading

CNN Report: DARPA Wants to Scan Billions of E-Mails to Find Internal Threats

This is a modified py-6 that occupies the entire horizontal space of its parent.

“… Bruce Schneier, author of Secrets and Lies and other books on security technology, criticized the DARPA idea as ‘un-American’ and a police state ploy. ‘This is what a police state does — everyone watching what everyone does and the police watching your every move,’ Schneier told CNN in a telephone interview.’ …”

By Charley Keyes, CNN National Security Producer
October 27, 2010

Washington (CNN) — The Pentagon wants computers to see into the future — and stop crimes before they happen.

As the U.S Army considers whether Maj. Nidal Hasan, the suspect in last year’s Fort Hood massacre, should face a court-martial, it also is looking at whether the military missed signals that might have indicated what was about to happen.

Now a Pentagon research arm is asking scientists to create a way to scan billions of e-mails to identify suspects in advance so that crimes can be stopped before they are committed.

That’s the goal of the latest $35 million project announced by DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which is credited with breakthroughs like the internet, GPS and stealth technology.

But this latest idea is already is drawing fire from privacy and security experts.

In a request for proposals, the think tank highlights the Fort Hood shootings.

“Each time we see an incident like a soldier in good mental health becoming homicidal or suicidal or an innocent insider becoming malicious, we wonder why we didn’t see it coming,” DARPA says. “When we look through the evidence after the fact, we often find a trail — sometimes even an “obvious” one. The question is: Can we pick up the trail before the fact, giving us time to intervene and prevent an incident.”

The agency calls the project ADAMS, for “Anomaly Detection at Multiple Scales.” 

Simply tracking messages to and from people around a single location like Fort Hood would be a vast task. There are 65,000 people at Fort Hood and in a single year they may create 4.68 billion electronic messages between almost 15 million people.

The challenge is to cope with and get accurate results from all this data.

The agency said it would primarily use ADAMS to look at “trusted person(s) in a secure environment with access to sensitive information and information systems and sources.”

“There are currently no established techniques for detecting anomalies in data sets of this size at acceptable false positive rates,” the agency notes in the request for proposals.

“The focus is on malevolent insiders that started out as ‘good guys.’ The specific goal of ADAMS is to detect anomalous behaviors before or shortly after they turn,” the agency says. “Operators in the counterintelligence community are the target end-users for ADAMS insider threat detection technology.”

Even more than the technological challenges, the project raises both policy and legal implications, according to James Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies. He says DARPA and the U.S. government have been struggling for a while with how to use computer software to screen millions of transactions, something credit card companies already do.

“But credit card companies can screen your transactions because you’ve entered into a contract with them and because it is in your interest to keep your account safe. The same isn’t necessarily true for e-mail,” Lewis said in an e-mail.

“If you are sending e-mail from your work account, your company has the right to screen it. But if you are sending it from your personal account, no one has the right to screen it unless they get a court order, and getting the court order requires some sort of advance knowledge of malicious intent, which defeats the purpose of screening, Lewis said.

Bruce Schneier, author of Secrets and Lies and other books on security technology, criticized the DARPA idea as “un-American” and a police state ploy.

“This is what a police state does — everyone watching what everyone does and the police watching your every move,” Schneier told CNN in a telephone interview. “And what we learn from history is that police states never work. It never is safer.”

He added, “We are American. We don’t spy on everybody else. And as a security guy, it works great in the movies but in real life you aren’t going to be any safer. … The false claims are going to kill you.”

DARPA doesn’t like to talk about this or other pending projects. One person affiliated with the agency who insisted on anonymity because this person lacked authorization to speak to journalists, said the agency admits there are unresolved questions, including “How do you do this without invading privacy.”

“It’s too early to comment,” the person said. “… We rarely talk about a DARPA program as an idea until it’s become a full-fledged program of record.”

Government Security News, which first reported on the project, compares it to the Tom Cruise movie “Minority Report.” That science fiction film from Steven Spielberg was based on the premise that computers had kept the city of Washington murder-free for six years by using “astounding technology” to predict crimes and discover about-to-be criminals.

An earlier DARPA plan, called Total Information Awareness, run by a former national security adviser, Adm. John Poindexter, was developed months after the 9/11 attacks to identify terrorists by combing through huge amounts of credit card, financial, travel and other electronic information. After a uproar over privacy and before it was implemented, the project was scrapped by Congress in 2003.

Similar data mining projects are used by U.S. intelligence agencies to monitor international threats.


“… the Heritage Foundation, a right-wing propaganda ministry that poses as a think tank. What they spend their time thinking about is how to mislead lots of people. …”

By Jaime O’Neill
ParadisePost (Paradise, CA) | October 9, 2010

A few months ago, my neighbor gave me a couple of pages of propaganda he got from the Heritage Foundation, a right-wing propaganda ministry that poses as a think tank. What they spend their time thinking about is how to mislead lots of people. I guess the heritage they want to preserve is the fine old American heritage of lying to the public in order to preserve privileged interests.

The mailer my neighbor got was appalling in its attempt to frighten people- especially older people-into believing that the expiration of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans would have devastating consequences even for people who aren’t in that cushy category. According to the Heritage Foundation propaganda, “the average tax increase for over 100 millions Americans would be $1, 716 if tax cuts are allowed to expire.”

Pretty scary, huh? I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t afford to take an additional tax hit of nearly $2 grand a year. And, of course, I wouldn’t, but if I didn’t look at this stuff carefully, I’d sure as hell believe I was going to get whacked that hard. The fact is, with the proposals that have been put forth by the Obama administration, I’m going to be relieved of a little of the burden of taxation while those who have benefited so handsomely are going to be made to pay a little bit more in order to address that deficit so many right wingers now seem upset about (even though they were fond of saying “deficits don’t matter” back when Bush was running them up).

In addition to the bald-faced manipulation of statistics to spread fear, the Heritage Foundation material included a wholly specious “survey” intended to skew the truth beyond any recognizable relationship to reality. It’s very easy to word survey questions to get almost any response pollsters want, and this so-called “survey” is like the ones Wally Herger sends out now and then, designed to get a predetermined response. It works like this. If you are polling for Tide detergent, you ask respondents if a) they’d rather buy Tide, or b) have their children go around looking like filthy beggars. People who bother to respond to that kind of poll are going to give Tide a big favorability rating. In similar fashion, the Heritage Foundation asks people questions like this:

“In 2009, Americans were paying more in taxes than they were spending on food, clothing, and housing combined. Do you believe that current levels of taxation are a) too high, b) too low, c) about right, d) not sure/no opinion.”

If the premise was accurate, there would really be only one way to answer a question like that. But, of course, the premise isn’t accurate, or even close to it. A moment’s thought would tell anyone answering the question that the poll taker is playing fast and loose with the facts. Are you paying more in taxes than you are for food, housing, and clothing? Of course you’re not. But if you simply respond to the question without much thought, you have to cough up the answer this well-funded propaganda campaign was seeking.

Here’s another of the slimy questions cooked up by these advocates for the fat cats.

“According to recent estimates, if current tax cuts expire, the American people will face an overall tax hike of almost $2.4 trillion. Do you support or oppose this massive tax increase?”

Or, try this one:

“The tax relief package of 2001 provided Americans with across-the-board tax rate cuts that are set to expire. If these tax rate cuts are not made permanent, families will face a tax increase of as much as 100 percent. Do you support or oppose permanently reducing income tax rates?”

There’s a lot more stuff in that vein, but the survey concludes with this question:

“Do you support efforts by The Heritage Foundation, through our respected Center for Data Analysis, to provide unbiased analysis of every important tax proposal …?”

How distracted or stupid would someone have to be to buy this kind of phony baloney?

The truth is, if it makes its way through Congress, the expiration of the Bush tax cuts is only going to effect people making over $250,000 a year, and the reinstatement of those 2001 tax cuts aren’t likely to make any impact whatsoever on a) small businesses, or b) job creation. Most of the money that has flowed into the hands of the top 1 percent of the American people through the Bush tax cuts has not been plowed back into the economy.

The wealthy are sitting on their dough, with trillions locked away, not generating jobs, but often earning lightly taxed capital gains income for people whose first priority never seems to be the good of the nation. They hate it when they’re asked to pay for the system that benefits them so richly, the military that protects their interests, the schools that provide them workers, the roads that carry their goods, the civilization that taxes make possible.

Like most people, I favor lower taxes. But I also favor civilization, not anarchy. And, as the saying goes, “freedom isn’t free.” We have to pay for the right to live in a country that offers as much as this one does. And, because the weal-thy reap the most rewards, they shouldn’t mind paying just a tiny bit more as a percentage of their income than the rest of us do.

As it stands now, they usually pay less, and they still whine about it. The greed of that tiny group at the top seems boundless. They’ll never be satisfied. Which is why they underwrite propaganda campaigns and shell game operators like the Heritage Foundation.


By Carlos Dada

Miami Herald | October 30, 2p10

When I embarked six years ago into investigating the killing of Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero, I didn’t know I was not beginning to work on a story, but taking a trip to the darkest era in modern Salvadoran history, guided by one of its cruelest perpetrators.

Captain Alvaro Rafael Saravia, the confessed plot coordinator, was the right-hand man of Roberto D’Aubuisson, a prominent member of the World Anti Communist League and the founder of ARENA, still one of the main political parties in El Salvador. D’Aubuisson showed up frequently on television reading lists of his enemies. People on the list would generally disappear.

D’Aubuisson was a former student at the School of the Americas, the Fort Benning, Ga., facility that trained Latin American soldiers and police officers. He and Saravia represented the visible part of a complex structure, with members at all levels of the security forces, trained by expert South American and Central American officers. The structure was financed by rich Salvadoran businessmen, some of them living in the United States.

And it was they who were responsible for the plot to kill Archbishop Romero, an assassination that ignited the Salvadoran civil war, a conflict that left about 100,000 people dead.

Captain Saravia played God with a .45 caliber gun, sleeping in big houses where cocaine, women and alcohol were provided by the owners, wealthy businessmen. Captain Saravia coordinated, on March 24, 1980, the killing of Archbishop Romero and even went to the church where Romero was delivering Mass to see for himself how the bishop was killed.

Thirty years later, Saravia is a diminished old man, abandoned by his peers, living undercover and in misery, working as a peasant in remote lands, hiding himself in the poorest corners of Central America. He has lost his family and his name.

No Central American tribunal is looking for him, but still he hides. He knows too much. He is afraid not of justice, but of his former peers.

He is the only one ever tried in connection with the killing of Monsignor Romero.

CIVIL trial

In 2004, a civil trial was held in Saravia’s absence in Fresno, Calif.  He was the first person ever found culpable of crimes against humanity for the killing of a single person. By then, Saravia was already on the run. His punishment in the end is to live like most Central Americans: in poverty, without any state structure that can guarantee food, shelter, security, justice.

If he had seen this coming, he told me, he too would have been a revolutionary.

Then why had he been a prominent member of D’Aubuisson’s structure? Because he was trained to do that, he says. Because in the army they tell you that the communists are the enemy. And who is a communist? Everyone. And then you act accordingly. The banality of evil, you might think.

Journalists and scholars have failed so far to adequately investigate the structures behind the killing squads. Not only at a local level — where it involved soldiers, police officers, army officers and wealthy businessmen — but also at a regional and even global level.

According to State Department declassified documents, there was a group of wealthy Salvadorans operating from Miami called the Miami Six who were actively involved in financing death squads in El Salvador and ordering selective killings, bombings and terrorist acts.

Two of the Miami Six founded an organization called the Freedom Foundation and hired a lobbying group to put a benign face on their activities. In the work agreement with the Miami Six, the lobbyists stated:

“American opinion about El Salvador is shaped more by sensationalist journalists who headline the massacre of American nuns and photograph Salvadoran military excesses than it is by knowledge of the significant effort of the private business sector to respond to the legitimate aspirations and interests of the Salvadoran people.”

One of the Miami Six still owns a newspaper in El Salvador.

After I published the story on Archbishop Romero’s murder in March this year, he called my work a piece of sensationalistic journalism. It is our duty to do a better job uncovering the networks that brought repression, torture and systematic disappearances and killings in Latin America.

‘those monsters’

Perhaps the biggest compliment I have ever received came from a former target of the death squads. This man – a politician who suffered persecution and death threats, who had to leave the country because he was on the list of the death squads, who saw many friends disappear – called me with a sobbing voice after I published a story on Romero.

“Thanks,” he said. “Those monsters … you just made them so small.”


We don’t have death squads anymore. But now we have gang members, crazy and full of tattoos. Or fat drug dealers with mustaches and sombreros in big trucks who kill immigrants because they refuse to become hit men. Such is the cartoon of the new victimizers. Such are the new unknown executioners. And some death-squad killers would turn pale at the extreme cruelty inflicted upon some of the bodies found every day in clandestine graveyards.

We don’t have another 30 years to get to know the new organized criminals and their networks. We must start right now.


” … It would certainly serve the interests of the powerful if professional journalists were muted – or replaced as navigators in our society by bloggers and bloviators. … ” – Rupert Murdoch

Rupert Murdoch uses Margaret Thatcher lecture in a Display of Power

News Corp boss portrays himself as a rebel with a cause …

Murdoch delivers inaugural Margaret Thatcher Lecture

 Rupert Murdoch delivers the Margaret Thatcher Lecture at Lancaster House in London. Arthur Edwards/The Sun/PA

By John Kampfner | Guardian | October 25, 2010

The gathered clan laughed nervously when Lord Saatchi, their host, declared that Britons now spent more on Sky TV subscriptions than they did on bread. When the other man on the stage smiled, the audience relaxed. To understand Rupert Murdoch‘s grip on British public life it is instructive to see the body language when the elite comes together. I counted at least five Conservative cabinet ministers among the great and good in the ornate surroundings of Lancaster House for the inaugural Margaret Thatcher lecture on Thursday.

The timing was equally pertinent. Murdoch’s speech, entitled Free Markets and Free Minds, came the day after the Comprehensive Spending Review that sought not just to tackle the budget deficit but to complete Thatcher’s unfinished business of reducing the size of the state and unleashing the private sector.

Concerns over Thatcher’s health could not mask a celebratory mood among News Corporation executives who, in just a matter of days, have seen the BBC’s budget cut by 16% and Ofcom denuded of staff.

Murdoch, even now, continues to portray himself as the rebel with a cause. “I am something of a parvenu,” he said. At each step of the way, he had taken on vested interests – whether trade unions at Wapping or other “institutions hungry for power at the expense of ordinary citizens”. He argued that technological change was leading to a new “democracy … from the bottom up”. A free society, he said, “required an independent press: turbulent, inquiring, bustling and free. That’s why our journalism is hard-driving and questioning of authority. And so are our journalists.”

Such a laudable commitment to free expression sits uneasily with his company’s dealings in countries with dubious civil liberties records, notably China, where his business interests invariably trump journalistic inquiry.

Murdoch suggested that traditional mediated journalism remained the only serious constraint on elites. “It would certainly serve the interests of the powerful if professional journalists were muted – or replaced as navigators in our society by bloggers and bloviators.” Bloggers could play a “social” role but this had little to do with uncovering facts. In saying this, Murdoch was doing more than justifying the Times’ and Sunday Times’ internet paywall. He appeared to be echoing the views of the New Yorker columnist Malcolm Gladwell, and others who argue that social media and blogs are not speaking truth to power in the way their advocates proclaim.

When tackling the most controversial areas, Murdoch moved from unequivocal statement to hints. The words “Andy” and “Coulson” came immediately to mind when he stated: “Often I have cause to celebrate editorial endeavour. Occasionally I have cause for regret. Let me be clear: we will vigorously pursue the truth – and we will not tolerate wrongdoing.” One News Corp executive suggested afterwards that this was the closest Murdoch had come, and would come, to apologising for the phone-hacking affair.

The official line is that no senior figure knew about the practice at the News of the World. Coulson, who is now director of communications in Downing Street, resigned as the editor when the paper’s former royal editor, Clive Goodman, was jailed in January 2007. Intriguingly, a senior Murdoch executive told me after the speech: “If Coulson hadn’t quit, he would have been fired”. If that is the case, why do they continue to insist publicly that Coulson had done nothing wrong and had fallen on his sword only to protect the reputation of the company?

The other unspoken drama in the room was Murdoch’s bid to take full control of BSkyB and the campaign of resistance by an alliance of newspaper editors and the BBC, who are urging Vince Cable to block the deal.

Murdoch said the energy of the iconoclastic and unconventional should not be curbed, adding: “When the upstart is too successful, somehow the old interests surface, and restrictions on growth are proposed or imposed. That’s an issue for my company.”

The assembled ministers will have taken note. Just as the Labour government kowtowed at every turn, so the coalition – and Cable in particular – will be scrutinised closely by News Corp to ensure that it does the decent thing.

John Kampfner is the chief executive of Index on Censorship


Also see …

CAUGHT ON TAPE: Wisconsin GOP and Tea Party Target to block Minorities and College-age Voters in Voter Caging Plot

GOP and Tea Party Team Up to Obstruct Voters in Wisconsin – Plot Caught on Tape

Update: massive, coordinated and illegal plan to suppress Wisconsin voter turnout in November was exposed today by One Wisconsin Now (OWN), and Looming Election Brings Back Same Old GOP SOP: Caging, Voter Suppression & Undermining Democracy, and Voter Caging Scheme Uncovered in Wisconsin.

By Sarah Posner
The Nation | October 29, 2010

From familiar stories about “illegal” electioneering by ACORN and the Black Panthers to Sharron Angle’s recent claimthat Harry Reid is trying to steal the election by offering prospective voters free food—the myth of widespread voter fraud is now commonplace among Republicans. In just one example, an unconfirmed assertion that Nevada voting machines already had Reid’s name checked off became a national story, with Rush Limbaugh claiming that the “New Black Panther Party,” with the “imprimatur of the Justice Department,” was “running fraudulent elections” across the country.

In this swirling storm of misinformation and propaganda, a half-dozen Republican activists met in the community room of the Tri City National Bank in Sturtevant, Wisconsin on October 27, to receive training on how to be an election observer. Lou D’Abbraccio, an official with the Racine County Republican Party, laid out a parade of voter fraud horribles to the assembled men, from fraudulent voter registrations to vans organized by “leftists” ferrying people “incentivized” with money or coupons to cast multiple votes at different polling locations.

“There are polling locations where the election workers are largely Republican, and we have less concern,” said D’Abbraccio, a member of the Racine Tea Party, the local chapter of Koch brothers-funded Americans for Prosperity. “Then there are polling places where, not so much. Historically we have observed things there that are issues.”

This year, the Wisconsin GOP, Americans for Prosperity and Wisconsin tea party groups are working together, through the GOP and the tea party-affiliated website We’re Watching Wisconsin Elections, to combat this alleged scourge on the democratic process.

D’Abbraccio went on to recount “war stories” from previous elections, particularly 2004, which he claimed was “the worst election I’ve experienced in Racine.”

Even though Wisconsin law prohibits photography by anyone but news media inside a polling place, D’Abbraccio counseled his trainees to bring their cell phone cameras just in case. “Theoretically you’re not supposed to take pictures,” he said, but told the group to do it “surreptitiously” if they needed to document anything—and to “be careful.”

The progressive group One Wisconsin Now has asked the US Attorney, the State Attorney General and the state Government Accountability Board to investigate a joint plan by the state Republican Party, Americans for Prosperity and local tea party groups “to engage in voter suppression” during the election, in violation of the Constitution and federal law. In particular, based on documents made available on the We’re Watching Wisconsin Elections and other tea party sites, as well as a recording obtained by One Wisconsin Now at a June meeting at which the coordination was discussed, AFP would pay for mailings to voters so that a list of supposedly ineligible voters could be used by tea party activists to challenge voters at the polls.

The GOP and tea party groups have  denied the existence of any plan, in spite of the public documents outlining it. Tim Dake, one of the speakers on the tape One Wisconsin Now obtained and a leading state tea party figure associated with the Wisconsin Grandsons of Liberty, called the charges “ridiculous, reprehensible and could be construed as libel.” But the We’re Watching Wisconsin Elections site continues to publicize meetings organized by the Wisconsin Republican Party to train election observers and to make the training materials available on their site.

At the Racine County training, there was no discussion of using any lists to challenge the eligibility of voters. While D’Abbraccio urged his trainees to be polite, he nonetheless continually elaborated on and reinforced the impression that rampant fraud by “leftist” groups threatened the integrity of the election and that election observers were necessary to report such fraud to party officials and to challenge the eligibility of voters they suspected of fraud.

Even with appropriate training, said Wendy Weiser, Deputy Director of the Democracy Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law, “that doesn’t diminish our concern about what might happen on Election Day” with election observers. The proliferation of unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud, she said, “cements distrust and hostility and lack of confidence and anger, and it’s inaccurate. There’s no basis for this, and stoking anger and mistrust around election time is not a good thing.”

The unsubstantiated claim that ACORN had engaged in widespread fraud in the 2008 election is a well-worn trope in conservative media, along with the implication, and sometimes explicit claim, that the election of Barack Obama was illegitimate. After the conservative-instigated witch hunt led to ACORN closing its doors, additional bogeymen have been added to the mix.

As D’Abbraccio put it,

“An organization running around comprised of all the alphabet soup of evil: AFSCME, SEIU, ACLU—every leftist group you can imagine put together some umbrella group called Election Protection. In the city of Racine, it actually took over polling locations [in 2004].”

That year, Racine County was a hotbed of charges of voter fraud by conservatives, but an analysis by the Brennan Center found just seven instances of ineligible voters knowingly casting ballots that were counted—just 0.0002 percent of the total votes cast statewide.

In spite of this lack of evidence, D’Abbraccio claimed to be “concerned with wholesale fraud.” He painted a foreboding picture of “knocks and drags,” which he described as vans trolling the streets for random people to pick up. He claimed that “leftist” groups give people campaign literature that was really a “coupon” to redeem at a local establishment. He said these vans “drag people from polling place to polling place and have them vote multiple times.”

That is a complete fantasy and fiction,” said Scot Ross, executive director of One Wisconsin Now. “There is nothing like that that happened.”

Reid Magney, a spokesman for the state Government Accountability Board, which oversees elections, said that there are “fairly rare instances” of people double-voting, citing one case last year in which a couple was convicted of voting in the polling places of both their primary residence and their vacation home. This was detected not due to a citizen complaint, he said, but because the “we [the GAB] proactively run checks after every election to make sure there is no double voting.”

As far as other types of double-voting or ballot-stuffing, Magney said, “we haven’t seen any kind of evidence of any widespread problem of that.”

Ross added that the groups concerned about voter fraud have a “complete and total delusion that minorities are voting more than once. There’s absolutely not one shred of evidence, no conviction, no charges, no nothing of that nature in the state of Wisconsin. I am aware of absolutely no activity like that.”

About the alleged “knock and drag” efforts, D’Abbraccio said he followed vans around on previous election days and said he would be following vans this Tuesday as well. “We have on occasion followed them from polling place to polling place,” he said. “The fact that they’re looking for someone following them from polling place to polling place is a good indicator that something fishy is going on. I had one guy start pulling evasive maneuvers.”

He speculated—without any basis—that Advancing Wisconsin, a group formed in 2008, may be the culprit this year. “We suspect that if it happens this time,” said D’Abbraccio, “it’s going to be through a group called Advancing Wisconsin, which was funded by George Soros [as] this kind of umbrella group that’s intended to create a permanent election infrastructure for all these groups so they’ve got the know-how and resources on election day, and some of that know-how is how to cheat.”

Meagan Mahaffey, Advancing Wisconsin’s executive director, said her group did no voter registration drives in 2010. Of D’Abbraccio’s statement, Mahaffey said, “I’m pretty shocked by it. It’s a pretty serious allegation he’s making. Nothing to back it up and nothing to show we are doing this. It’s not true, not rooted in anything. Just a guy in a meeting saying whatever he wants to say.”

D’Abbraccio also claimed that there is abuse of the corroboration process for voters who register on election day. Under Wisconsin law, if someone seeking to register on election day lacks the proper verification of their address—either their drivers’ license number, the last four digits of their social security number or other acceptable proof for establishing residence, such as a lease or utility bill, they can have someone “corroborate” their residency. Referring to the process as “vouching,” D’Abbraccio maintained that people are grabbed as they finish voting and asked to “vouch” for a stranger, producing an “endless loop” of people vouching for each other.

Magney, the GAB spokesperson, said that he was not aware of phony corroborations. “I’m not aware of us prosecuting” anyone for that, he said, adding, “I don’t think that that’s an issue.”

“I have never heard such an allegation,” said the Brennan Center’s Weiser. “That is something that is certainly easily observable and easy to get caught” because “it is so elaborate and visible.”

D’Abbraccio also accused the GAB of being derelict in its responsibility to purge 18,000 “invalid” registrations from the voter rolls, based on mail returned as undeliverable to the GAB.

But the reality is quite different. Magney said that as part of a routine check under the Help America Vote Act, the Board sent letters to voters whose details on their voter registrations didn’t match other government records, such as the Department of Motor Vehicles database. Frequently, he said, such lack of a match is caused, for example, by one record bearing the person’s middle initial only, while the other bears the person’s full middle name. What’s more, he said, the lack of a match doesn’t render the person ineligible to vote; the purpose of the database match, he said, is only “to improve data quality.” (The Republican State Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen sued the board in 2008 in an attempt to force it to require a match for a voter to be eligible to vote; the case was dismissed.)

About the 18,000 voters whose letters were returned as undeliverable, and who conservatives are charging should be removed from voter rolls, Magney said, “we didn’t feel comfortable removing [from the voter rolls] them based on one letter coming back, especially because there is no requirement in the law that your information has to match in the first place.” He said the GAB sent a second letter, and 12,431 have come back as undeliverable a second time, in most cases probably because the voter had moved. “Those are the people who we have marked as inactive. If they show up to vote, their names won’t be on the list at their polling place,” although they could do a same-day registration as allowed by Wisconsin law.

Election observers can be perfectly innocuous, but the climate of “misinformation or fear, stoking fear of voter fraud” creates risks, said Weiser. While that has been has been occurring for several election cycles, she said, “what’s different in this cycle is more mobilization of citizens, party activists and political operatives to police the polling places and to take matters in their own hands… if people are overly outraged so they are more likely to cross lines, and that’s a problem.”


By Greg Sargent
Washington Post | October 27, 2010

Another turn in the stomping incident. The Louisville Courier Journal reported today that the Rand Paul campaign says it won’t be returning nearly $2000 in campaign contributions chipped in by Tim Profitt, the former Bourbon County coordinator who admitted to stomping MoveOn’s Lauren Valle.

But last night, less than 24 hours ago, the Paul campaign told Fox News that they would be returning the money, according to video the Jack Conway campaign sent my way.

The Fox anchor noted last night that the Paul campaign said they were disassociating themselves from the stomper, and added: “That disassociation includes returning any campaign donations he made.” Seems that’s no longer operative. Honestly, should this one really be a tough call?

Paul’s campaign has already taken heat from Conway for not initially saying whether it would return campaign contributions from three white separatists or from a donor who ran an adult website.

* Meanwhile, Kentucky cops are considering charges against two more Paul supporters.

* Smoking gun of the day: Conservative bloggers unearth video proof that Lauren Valle got stomped after … protesting. Wow, what a great scoop!

* More enthusiasm gap madness: A new New York Times poll finds that fewer than four in 10 Dems still aren’t paying a lot of attention to the elections, versus more than half of Republicans who are. Hey, what’s the rush?

* Nice take by Steve Benen on the larger meaning of the $100 million in attack ads foes of health reform have run since it passed.

* New batch of CNN Senate polls: Sharron Angle leads Harry Reid, 49-45. Rand Paul leads Jack Conway, 50-43. And Colorado remains deadlocked.

* With Senate dysfunction likely to get far worse, Terry McAuliffe says the future of energy reform may lie with the states.

* Silver lining of the day: Nate Silver explains why the Dem loss of the House is “not inevitable.”

* With spending on this election on track to top $4 billion, Dan Eggen notes an important trend:

Donations from Wall Street, medical and insurance firms, energy conglomerates and other corporations have shifted decisively toward Republicans over the past year in the wake of congressional battles over health-care reform, financial regulations and other issues.

* Obama held his first sit-down with activist-type liberal bloggers today, and Sam Stein notes it seems like an effort to script in advance the online narrative about the election fallout.

* Joe Sudbay, who was there, reports that Obama told the bloggers that he likes constructive criticism. Clip and save for future reference!

* And Oliver Willis, who was also there, says Obama told him he’s a progressive, too.


“… It’s no wonder that the Kennedy assassination has become associated with crackpots and nutcases as most of the stories and misleading information were spread by right-wing whack-jobs like the Birchers. …”

Just one month after President Kennedy was assassinated, one of the founders of the John Birch Society came out with an article entitled, “Marksmanship in Dallas”. Revilo Pendleton Oliver, the man whom JBS figurehead Robert Welch described as, “quite possibly the world’s greatest living scholar,” outlined some of the great conspiracy theories that would dominate the JFK assassination debate over the next forty years.

Revilo’s article is extremely disturbing and demonstrates how much the far-right hated JFK and how much contempt they had for liberals, blacks and Jews at the time. Revilo asserts that Oswald was a communist and had helped communists everywhere, including the U.S. government. This article would unleash a flood of far-right literature designed to obfuscate the facts of the assassination.

It’s no wonder that the Kennedy assassination has become associated with crackpots and nutcases. as most of the stories and misleading information were spread by right-wing whack-jobs like the Birchers. Their message always seems to be, don’t trust the government or the political left,while implicating the usual suspects; it’s all part of a communist plot, or maybe LBJ was involved with help from the CIA, possibly the Illuminati, and you can bet that the One-Worlders in the Council of Foreign Relations were behind it. In all the noise, an American President’s murder becomes a joke and any possible conspirators walk cleanly away.

A careful reading of the record reveals that the major conspiracy authors have a lot in common with the John Birch Society perspective.

Many of the right-wing JFK conspiracy propagators share something else: connections with extremist organizations and groups. Mark Lane, author of “Rush to Judgement,” ended up working for the ultra-racist Liberty Lobby and defended people like James Earl Ray and holocaust denier Willis Carto. Revilo P. Oliver went on to organize the National Alliance with William Pierce, and then went to work for the Institute for Historical Review in trying to discredit the Holocaust. Victor Marchetti and Fletcher Prouty used the Orange County-based Holocaust denial network to spread their stories. …

This article was originally published on Saturday, December 22, 2007

Aaron Dahl