Thursday, July 28, 2005

Air America Radio up 140% in LA

Air America Radio up 140% in LA, eating up Rush Limbaugh’s audience

The conservative echo chamber believes Air America Radio is going down like Jeff Gannon on an overnight press-pass to the White House. Left-wing talk radio they said, was over before it began. But like all so-called wisdom coming from the GOP noise machine, you better check the facts before you believe it. It turns out that contrary to conservative spin and wishful thinking, Air America, barely a year old, is building an audience and starting to eat in to the market share of conservative talkers who have been around for decades.

Byron York wrote on, “The latest radio ratings are in and they show continued bad news for Air America.” But York cited only New York ratings where Air America’s share held firm at a 1.2 rating, at a time that nearly all political talk in New York (and indeed the whole country) showed a decline in the first quarter of 2005. (Rush Limbaugh’s ratings tanked by 25% in New York).

In the fourth quarter of 2004 Al Franken's ratings in New York were 44% of Rush Limbaugh's. In just 3 months that ratio rose to 60%; that is bad news, but not for Air America. In the same New York Winter 2005 ratings, Air America's Randi Rhodes on in the crucial afternoon drive-time, went up 33%, while the conservative talk shows in same time slot on WABC and WOR each went down 33%. Air America's evening show, “The Majority Report” starring Janeane Garofalo and Sam Seder went up 100%; while the WOR show in that time slot was flat and the WABC show went down 33%. In total audience, “The Majority Report” was the number one talk show in New York City in its time slot.

While knocking Air America in an op-ed piece for the LA Times another right-wing nutcase tried to make the silly comparison between Air America Radio and conservative Bill Bennett's morning talk show, which was launched at the same time as Air America. Bennett, the right wing ethic czar turned gambling addict “reaches nearly 124 markets,” he said. However, there are several hundred conservative talk stations across the United States and for Bennett to land on 124 of them, is not that big a deal.

In order for Air America programming to be heard on any radio station, that station must first take the significant step of changing its format. Getting more than 67 and counting radio stations to change everything they broadcast, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for the opportunity to carry Air America's programming is far more substantial an accomplishment than getting 124 right-wing radio stations to switch out one three-hour conservative talk show for another.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

How centrist Demcrats are selling out the party's future

1.) They ignore or attack the base. Calling Howard Dean names, and ignoring internet activists. They ignore the manpower and fundraising capacity of an entire wing of the party.

2.) They use a surrogate political machine provided by Organized Labor to man the phones, walk the precincts etc...

3.) They sell out the interests of Organized Labor by voting for CAFTA, NAFTA, and a whole host of imballanced trade agreements.

4.) They pretend to be speaking for democrats as a whole, when in fact they have bypassed the party completely.

This has to stop.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Two Wrongs Make a Right Wing

The Rights favorite argument is the two wrongs make a right argument. Recall the prison abuse scandal, "they kill women and children", "they chopped the head off of Nick Burke" etc... These things are wrong and no one disputes that. But, two wrongs to not make a right (unless you are Oriely).

We have seen it with them all along (feel free to post your own examples in the comments section).

Now you see it with the leak scandal. "Well Wilson lied about who sent him", so what?

The greatest country in the world, the most advanced, the most civilized and we are reduced to arguments a 4 year old gives when he steals a cookie.

It's pathetic.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Allawi: Iraq deteriorating into civil war

Allawi: this is the start of civil war

IRAQ’S former interim prime minister Iyad Allawi has warned that his country is facing civil war and has predicted dire consequences for Europe and America as well as the Middle East if the crisis is not resolved.

“The problem is that the Americans have no vision and no clear policy on how to go about in Iraq,” said Allawi, a long-time ally of Washington.

In an interview with The Sunday Times last week as he visited Amman, the Jordanian capital, he said: “The policy should be of building national unity in Iraq. Without this we will most certainly slip into a civil war. We are practically in stage one of a civil war as we speak.”

Allawi, a secular Shi’ite, said that Iraq had collapsed as a state and needed to be rebuilt. The only way forward, he said, was through “national unity, the building of institutions, the economy and a firm but peaceful foreign relation policy”. Unless these criteria were satisfied, “the country will deteriorate”.


CIA Agents Letter to US Senate and House


The Honorable Dennis Hastert, Speaker, U.S. House of Representatives

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader, U.S. House of Representatives

The Honorable Dr. William Frist, Majority Leader of the Senate

The Honorable Harry Reid, Minority Leader of the Senate

We, the undersigned former U.S. intelligence officers are concerned with the tone and substance of the public debate over the ongoing Department of Justice investigation into who leaked the name of Valerie Plame, wife of former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson IV, to syndicated columnist Robert Novak and other members of the media, which exposed her status as an undercover CIA officer. The disclosure of Ms. Plame’s name was a shameful event in American history and, in our professional judgment, may have damaged U.S. national security and poses a threat to the ability of U.S. intelligence gathering using human sources. Any breach of the code of confidentiality and cover weakens the overall fabric of intelligence, and, directly or indirectly, jeopardizes the work and safety of intelligence workers and their sources.

The Republican National Committee has circulated talking points to supporters to use as part of a coordinated strategy to discredit Ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife. As part of this campaign a common theme is the idea that Ambassador Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame was not undercover and deserved no protection. The following are four recent examples of this "talking point":

Michael Medved stated on Larry King Live on July 12, 2005, "And let's be honest about this. Mrs. Plame, Mrs. Wilson, had a desk job at Langley. She went back and forth every single day."

Victoria Toensing stated on a Fox News program with John Gibson on July 12, 2005 that, "Well, they weren't taking affirmative measures to protect that identity. They gave her a desk job in Langley. You don't really have somebody deep undercover going back and forth to Langley, where people can see them."

Ed Rodgers, Washington Lobbyist and former Republican official, said on July 13, 2005 on the Newshour with Jim Lehrer, "And also I think it is now a matter of established fact that Mrs. Plame was not a protected covert agent, and I don't think there's any meaningful investigation about that."

House majority whip Roy Blunt (R, Mo), on Face the Nation, July 17, 2005, "It certainly wouldn't be the first time that the CIA might have been overzealous in sort of maintaining the kind of top-secret definition on things longer than they needed to. You know, this was a job that the ambassador's wife had that she went to every day. It was a desk job. I think many people in Washington understood that her employment was at the CIA, and she went to that office every day."

These comments reveal an astonishing ignorance of the intelligence community and the role of cover. The fact is that there are thousands of U.S. intelligence officers who "work at a desk" in the Washington, D.C. area every day who are undercover. Some have official cover, and some have non-official cover. Both classes of cover must and should be protected.

While we are pleased that the U.S. Department of Justice is conducting an investigation and that the U.S. Attorney General has recused himself, we believe that the partisan attacks against Valerie Plame are sending a deeply discouraging message to the men and women who have agreed to work undercover for their nation’s security.

We are not lawyers and are not qualified to determine whether the leakers technically violated the 1982 Intelligence Identities Protection Act. However, we are confident that Valerie Plame was working in a cover status and that our nation’s leaders, regardless of political party, have a duty to protect all intelligence officers. We believe it is appropriate for the President to move proactively to dismiss from office or administratively punish any official who participated in any way in revealing Valerie Plame's status. Such an act by the President would send an unambiguous message that leaks of this nature will not be tolerated and would be consistent with his duties as the Commander-in-Chief.

We also believe it is important that Congress speak with one non-partisan voice on this issue. Intelligence officers should not be used as political footballs. In the case of Valerie Plame, she still works for the CIA and is not in a position to publicly defend her reputation and honor. We stand in her stead and ask that Republicans and Democrats honor her service to her country and stop the campaign of disparagement and innuendo aimed at discrediting Mrs. Wilson and her husband.

Our friends and colleagues have difficult jobs gathering the intelligence, which helps, for example, to prevent terrorist attacks against Americans at home and abroad. They sometimes face great personal risk and must spend long hours away from family and friends. They serve because they love this country and are committed to protecting it from threats from abroad and to defending the principles of liberty and freedom. They do not expect public acknowledgement for their work, but they do expect and deserve their government’s protection of their covert status.

For the good of our country, we ask you to please stand up for every man and woman who works for the U.S. intelligence community and help protect their ability to live their cover.

Sincerely yours,


Larry C. Johnson, former Analyst, CIA


Mr. Brent Cavan, former Analyst, CIA

Mr. Vince Cannistraro, former Case Officer, CIA

Mr. Michael Grimaldi, former Analyst, CIA

Mr. Mel Goodman, former senior Analyst, CIA

Col. W. Patrick Lang (US Army retired), former Director, Defense Humint Services, DIA

Mr. David MacMichael, former senior estimates officer, National Intelligence Council, CIA

Mr. James Marcinkowski, former Case Officer, CIA

Mr. Ray McGovern, former senior Analyst and PDB Briefer, CIA

Mr. Jim Smith, former Case Officer, CIA

Mr. William C. Wagner, former Case Officer, CIA

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Rove leak is just part of larger scandal

Rove leak is just part of larger scandal

By Daniel Schorr
WASHINGTON – Let me remind you that the underlying issue in the Karl Rove controversy is not a leak, but a war and how America was misled into that war.

In 2002 President Bush, having decided to invade Iraq, was casting about for a casus belli. The weapons of mass destruction theme was not yielding very much until a dubious Italian intelligence report, based partly on forged documents (it later turned out), provided reason to speculate that Iraq might be trying to buy so-called yellowcake uranium from the African country of Niger. It did not seem to matter that the CIA advised that the Italian information was "fragmentary and lacked detail."

Prodded by Vice President Dick Cheney and in the hope of getting more conclusive information, the CIA sent Joseph Wilson, an old Africa hand, to Niger to investigate. Mr. Wilson spent eight days talking to everyone in Niger possibly involved and came back to report no sign of an Iraqi bid for uranium and, anyway, Niger's uranium was committed to other countries for many years to come.

No news is bad news for an administration gearing up for war. Ignoring Wilson's report, Cheney talked on TV about Iraq's nuclear potential. And the president himself, in his 2003 State of the Union address no less, pronounced: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."

Wilson declined to maintain a discreet silence. He told various people that the president was at least mistaken, at most telling an untruth. Finally Wilson directly challenged the administration with a July 6, 2003 New York Times op-ed headlined, "What I didn't find in Africa," and making clear his belief that the president deliberately manipulated intelligence in order to justify an invasion.

One can imagine the fury in the White House. We now know from the e-mail traffic of Time's correspondent Matt Cooper that five days after the op-ed appeared, he advised his bureau chief of a supersecret conversation with Karl Rove who alerted him to the fact that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA and may have recommended him for the Niger assignment. Three days later, Bob Novak's column appeared giving Wilson's wife's name, Valerie Plame, and the fact she was an undercover CIA officer. Mr. Novak has yet to say, in public, whether Mr. Rove was his source. Enough is known to surmise that the leaks of Rove, or others deputized by him, amounted to retaliation against someone who had the temerity to challenge the president of the United States when he was striving to find some plausible reason for invading Iraq.

The role of Rove and associates added up to a small incident in a very large scandal - the effort to delude America into thinking it faced a threat dire enough to justify a war.

• Daniel Schorr is the senior news analyst at National Public Radio.

Debunking Rove's Spin

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

How to tell a dirt bag from a journalist

Take a look:
Fox's Gibson: Rove deserves "a medal ... Because Valerie Plame should have been outed by somebody"

On the July 12 edition of Fox News' The Big Story, host John Gibson said that White House deputy chief of staff Karl Rove should be given "a medal" for outing covert CIA operative Valerie Plame, adding that Plame "should have been outed by somebody."

What we are talking about here is a covert CIA agent in a time of war. These people don't care at all about our security. They only care about their partisanship and their power.

When Karl Rove Saw the Savagery of 9/11 He

Thought about how he could use it to get more power.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Got nothing to hide?

Why are you hiding.

It seams to me that innocent people want their day in court. Why then would the administration and Congress not want to have public hearings about Iraq war corruption, WMD, Rove and more?

What are they hiding.

The Congress of the United States of America has a right and responsibility to oversee the policies of the administration. This Congress refuses to do that.

Kiss my ass righty!

Your president is a lying sack of shit!

No one is listening to your Republican Radio crap anymore. You are personally responsible for weakening the United States of America both economically and militarily because you have been repeating the same lies as Bush for years now.

Take some responsibility for your actions.

How many democrats did you shout down? How many who's opinions have now proven true? How many who could have prevented some of the more grievous mistakes did you refuse to listen to.

In short. How many fellow Americans did you disrespect just because they held a different opinion then you.

Friday, July 08, 2005

How Fox News Exploits Tragedy (3)

Fox News' Brian Kilmeade: London terror attack near G8 summit "works to ... Western world's advantage, for people to experience something like this together"

The following exchange between Fox News host Brian Kilmeade and Fox News business contributor and substitute host Stuart Varney occurred during breaking news coverage of the attacks on London subways and buses on the July 7 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

KILMEADE: And he [British Prime Minister Tony Blair] made the statement, clearly shaken, but clearly determined. This is his second address in the last hour. First to the people of London, and now at the G8 summit, where their topic Number 1 --believe it or not-- was global warming, the second was African aid. And that was the first time since 9-11 when they should know, and they do know now, that terrorism should be Number 1. But it's important for them all to be together. I think that works to our advantage, in the Western world's advantage, for people to experience something like this together, just 500 miles from where the attacks have happened.

VARNEY: It puts the Number 1 issue right back on the front burner right at the point where all these world leaders are meeting. It takes global warming off the front burner. It takes African aid off the front burner. It sticks terrorism and the fight on the war on terror, right up front all over again.


How Fox News Exploits Tragedy (2)

How Fox News Exploits Tragedy (1)

Fox's Gibson on "golden opportunity" missed: If France had been selected for 2012 Olympics, terrorists would "blow up Paris, and who cares?"

The day before the July 7 terrorist attacks on London buses and subways, Fox News host John Gibson stated that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) "missed a golden opportunity" because, if France had been selected to host the 2012 Olympics, terrorists would "blow up Paris, and who cares?" Following the London attacks, Gibson reiterated that the IOC ought to have selected Paris instead of London, because the British should "let somebody else be worried about guys with backpack bombs for a while."