Mountain Ravine Fall wallpaper

Mountain Ravine Fall wallpaper

A new report on ACORN and the media picks up where media Matters left off in this report, REPORT: ACORN OBSESSION: Beck, Hannity obsess over ACORN while virtually ignoring major corruption scandals. In this report the Urban and Environmental Policy Institute writes, Manipulating the Public Agenda: Why ACORN Was in the News, and What the News Got Wrong( there is a pdf to download at link)

Although ACORN is involved in many community activities around the country,
including efforts to improve housing, wages, access to credit, and public education,
the dominant story frame about ACORN was “voter fraud.” The “voter fraud” frame
appeared in 55% of the 647 news stories about the community organization in 15
mainstream news organizations during 2007 and 2008. The news media stories about
ACORN were overwhelmingly negative, reporting allegations by Republicans and
• In October 2008, at the peak of the campaign season, negative attacks dominated the
news about ACORN:
76% of the stories focused on allegations of voter fraud
8.7% involved accusations that public funds were being funneled to ACORN
7.9% of the stories involved charges that ACORN is a front for registering
3.1% involved blaming ACORN for the mortgage scandal
• The mainstream news media failed to fact-check persistent allegations of “voter
fraud” despite the existence of easily available countervailing evidence. The media
also failed to distinguish allegations of voter registration problems from allegations of
actual voting irregularities. They also failed to distinguish between allegations of
wrongdoing and actual wrongdoing. For example:
82.8% of the stories about ACORN’s alleged involvement in voter fraud failed to
mention that actual voter fraud is very rare (only 17.2% did mention it)
80.3% of the stories about ACORN’s alleged involvement in voter fraud failed to
mention that ACORN was reporting registration irregularities to authorities, as
required to do by law
85.1% of the stories about ACORN’s alleged involvement in voter fraud failed to
note that ACORN was acting to stop incidents of registration problems by its
(mostly temporary) employees when it became aware of these problems
95.8% of the stories about ACORN’s alleged involvement in voter fraud failed to
provide deeper context, especially efforts by Republican Party officials to use
allegations of “voter fraud” to dampen voting by low-income and minority
Americans, including the firing of U.S. Attorneys who refused to cooperate with
the politicization of voter fraud accusations – firings that ultimately led to the resignation of U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales
61.4% of the stories about ACORN’s alleged involvement in voter fraud failed to
acknowledge that Republicans were trying to discredit Obama with an ACORN
• 47.8% of the news stories about ACORN in October 2008 linked the organization to
candidate Barack Obama, most of them seeking to discredit him and his campaign
through guilt-by-association.
• The media bias against ACORN was evident not only in its focus on allegations of voter
fraud but also in the language used to describe ACORN, such as leftist, left-wing, front
(for Democrats), radical, activist, political, militant, and socialist.
• The attacks on ACORN originated with business groups and political groups that
opposed ACORN’s organizing work around living wages, predatory lending, and
registration of low-income and minority voters. These groups created frames to
discredit ACORN that were utilized by conservative ”opinion entrepreneurs” within
the conservative “echo chamber” – publications, TV and radio talk shows, blogs and
websites, think tanks, and columnists – to test, refine, and circulate narrative frames
about ACORN. These conservative “opinion entrepreneurs” were successful in
injecting their perspective on ACORN into the mainstream media.
• Perhaps the peak moment in the attack on ACORN occurred at the presidential
debate between Obama and McCain on Oct. 15, 2008. Although not asked a
question about ACORN, McCain injected the issue on his own, saying: “We
need to know the full extent of Senator Obama’s relationship with ACORN,
who is now on the verge of maybe perpetrating one of the greatest frauds in
voter history in this country, maybe destroying the fabric of democracy.“
Clearly this statement was newsworthy. This study reveals, however, that
opinion entrepreneurs, the conservative echo chamber, and the mainstream
media had laid the groundwork for McCain’s attack on ACORN.

Writer-pundit Eric Alterman once said there is no hidden right-wing conspiracy, for the most part its out in the open. The secrecy part is not so much the problem as how the Right is covered. Obviously some people embrace it like sacred dogma, others do not fellow politics and do not care and then there  is a corporate media that will not do its job on occasion. That media that does  will usually be a newspaper – thus the Right’s general contempt for print media. Who should be reporting on the recent ACORN story in context of the Right’s history of attacks on ACORN – the folks that are supposed to be the watchdogs of American democracy. Its not that ABC, CNN and the rest have taken a lazy dog approach to just the pimp story, they have helped with conservative framing and propagation of that distorted framing.

In light of the Conservative Culture of Corruption, for conservatives to mindlessly yap about ACORN is like a bank robber complaining about the bars on his cell. List of Scandalized Bush Administration Officials

* Brian Doyle – Deputy Press Secretary, Department of Homeland Security – Resigned in wake of child sex scandal. Doyle was arrested on April 4th, 2006 and pleaded no contest on September 19, 2006 to seven counts of use of a computer to seduce a child and sixteen counts of transmitting harmful material to a minor. On November 17th, 2006 Brian Doyle was sentenced to five years in state prison and ten years of probation. He will also need to register as a sex offender.

* Steven Griles – Deputy Secretary at the Interior Department – is the highest-ranked administration official yet convicted in the Jack Abramoff scandal. In March 2007, Griles pleaded guilty to lying about his role in the Jack Abramoff scandal. Sentenced to 10 months incarceration.

* John T. Korsmo – Chairman of the Federal Housing Finance Board from 2002 to 2004 – pleaded guilty in 2005 to lying to the Senate and an inspector general. He swore he had no idea how a list of presidents for FHFB-regulated banks were invited to a fundraiser for his friend’s congressional campaign. On the invites, Korsmo was listed as the “Special Guest.” Got 18 months of probation and a $5,000 fine.

More at the link.

Americans Pay More to Die Earlier — Why Is Our Health Care System So Screwed Up? or our health-care system is better then Slovenia’s,

In 2007, the United States spent an average of $7,290 per person on health care — 16 percent of gross domestic product. By contrast, our Canadian neighbors  spent an average of $3,895 per person, or 10 percent of GDP. The British spent $2,992 per person, or 8.4 percent of GDP. And the Japanese, who have some of the longest life expectancies in the world, spend $2,581 per person, or 8 percent of GDP.

The numbers for the U.S. are ridiculous by any measure, even if all this spending was producing a race of super beings capable of outswimming sharks and defeating grizzly bears in steel-cage death matches. But no: most studies of the world’s healthiest nations don’t even place the United States in the top 10, and the World Health Organization ranks our health care system 37th, just ahead of Slovenia’s.

Patriot Alert: Missing – Republicans That Respect Constitution

Patriot Alert

According to some polling about the presidential candidates strengths the only area where McCain has a slight lead is national security. Weird since McCain has been wrong, keeps declaring how proud he is of being wrong and has plans to continue to be wrong. While McCain Backs Petraeus, General Sounds Notes That Harmonize With Democratic Nominee

In saying that, Petraeus implicitly allied with U.S. Army Gen. David McKiernan, the U.S. commander in Afghanistan. Last week, McKiernan rejected the idea of replicating the blend of counterinsurgency strategy employed in Iraq. “The word that I don’t use in Afghanistan is the word ’surge,’” McKiernan said,

The surge in Iraq benefited from some very lucky timing and the fact that between genocide and mass exodus of millions of Iraqis there were fewer people left to kill. The goal of the surge was political reconciliation, the current state of which McCain’s man Petraeus sees as “fragile”( New U.S. intelligence report warns ‘victory’ not certain in Iraq.) The multiple sides of the Iraqi government could decide to stop arguing and start shooting. If that happens will McCain still be trying to hog some undeserved credit. McCain has said that in speech after speech and in at least one ad that, shutter the thought, Senator Obama wants to have the possibility of talks on the table. Petraeus agrees with Obama, not McCain,

Petraeus said, “You have to talk to enemies.” He added that it was necessary to have a particular goal for discussion and to perform advance work to understand the motivations of his interlocutors.

[  ]…Yet Petraeus emphasized throughout his lecture that reaching out to insurgent groups — some “with our blood on their hands,” he said — was necessary to the ultimate goal of turning them against irreconcilable enemies like Al Qaeda in Iraq.

Petraeus favorably cited the example of one of his British deputies, who in a previous assignment had to negotiate with Martin McGuiness of the Irish Republican Army, responsible for killing some of the British commander’s troops. The British officer, Petraeus said, occasionally wanted to “reach across the table” and choke his former adversary but understood that such negotiations were key to ending a war.

McCain’s attempt to use Bill Ayers and the guilt by association game has an element of his foreign policy in it. McBush and his supporters think that merely speaking to someone makes you guilty of something. McCain feels on some level that, maybe talking is might give the other side an upper hand. That notion denotes a common insecurity among many of today’s Conservatives. As Bush’s recent negotiations with North Korea show they also end up eating some crow. Another four years of an administration that blusters and talks out both sides of its two faces is something the American people would be better off without.

Peak Wingnut? You. Have. No. Idea. As I was doing the daily news rounds and checking on a few reactions by blogtopia I saw the Righties flogging the tired old birth certificate story, still trying very hard to push that sleaze fest about terrorist friends. I completely ignored the root nuts rumor about Senator Obama not writing his own book. Now according to John Cole they’re pushing, but like you know, don’t mean to push a National Enquirer story about Obama having a gay affair when he was a child. That would be the same National Enquirer that just a couple weeks ago the same nut roots were calling a worthless rag – which it is – for printing rumors of Sarah Palin having had an extra-marital affair. Some people devout their lives to noble things, while the nut roots devouts their’s to exploring every part of the gutter. As The Poor Man points out if such a relationship occurred between an adult and a child its not gay sex, its pedophilia. Once again the Right’s suggestions and accusations don’t require any documentation, proof, facts or veracity. Except when they want proof of something like citizenship and birth certificates. Then when supplied with proof the states of Hawaii and Illinois plus the entire federal government are involved in a huge conspiracy to pull a fast one on America because the seal on Obama’s birth certificate looks funny to the self appointed seal experts.

The unofficial clock is running. Digby/tristero is also wondering when will McCain be asked about his connections to Liddy, The Liddy/McCain Connection

McCain went so far as to praise Liddy’s “principles and philosophies!” I’m with Carl on this:

McCain should be asked at the debate to tell the American people exactly which “principles and philosophies” Liddy holds that he agrees with.

They might also want to ask what Johnny has been drinking, New McCain stump: ‘We’ve got them just where we want them’. It’s all part of McCain’s secret strategy to have Obama-Biden up by  double digits and the Republican National Committe considering pushing money toward senate races rather then waste it on McCain.

Gosh I hope the freepers don’t here about this, Sen. McCain Stood With ACORN Rally In 2006

McCain had no trouble fraternizing with ACORN in 2006 when their political interests coincided with his. Now, his campaign is writing e-mails in his name bashing ACORN as a tool of the Obama machine.

McCain, man of inestimitable integity dumps the first wife to marry a wealthy heiress and now he’s dumping ACORN because that too plays into his political ambitions. Vote for Johnny, you can count on him to do what serves his rather sleazy self interests.

The comedy portion of our program from a blogger called the Vodkapundit: Fighting Words, Posted by Stephen Green on October 13, 2008 at 8:20 pm

P.S. For my hipster Libertarian friends out there, you need to get this through your thick skulls. Republicans, given the kind of power the Democrats are about to accrue, would maybe take away your right to get a completely totally naked chick to grind on your lap in a publicly licensed bar. The Democrats will do their damnedest to take away your right to speak. There’s the First Amendment, and then there’s the First Amendment. Be careful what you wish for.

What bunker have these guys been living in. Bush is listening in to intimate conversation, The Republican governor of Maryland spys on nuns and puts church groups on  domestic terror watch, Bush declared hapeas corpus irrelevant and by his use of signing Bush declared that his branch of government was more equal then laws passed by Congress and used the U.S. Department of Justice for Republican vote caging. Now in their lurid fantasies of what an Obama presidency might do, Republicans suddenly discover the importance of the Constitution and the rule of law.