October 27, 2004
The BuzzFlash Mailbag
The opinions expressed in the Mailbag are not necessarily those of BuzzFlash. Read the BuzzFlash FAQ for info on submitting to the Mailbag.
THIS IS PART 2 OF THE OCTOBER 27, 2004 BUZZFLASH MAILBAG. CLICK HERE FOR PART 1.
Subject: Ground Zero - 2004
The pundits say it all comes down to Ohio. Politically, Ohio is gerrymandered by geography. The Southern and Western parts of the state are solidly Republican. But Northeast Ohio is staunchly Democratic. The big population bubble is Cuyahoga County, with the City of Cleveland at its core.
Cleveland is a hyper-version of what America will look like if W is reelected:
The Cuyahoga County Republican Party has "recruited" over 1400 "volunteers," one to be at each precinct. Their goal? Suppress the vote so that John Kerry does not get the 100,000 vote edge he needs here to offset Republican majorities in other parts of the state and win Ohio.
They plan to challenge the legitimacy of every voter they can. Blacks, Hispanics and Muslim-Americans have been registering in droves. So have the 18-24 year olds attending the area's eight colleges and universities. The Republican Party knows that those 100,000 votes are there. So out come the intimidation techniques. Their challenges will create a massive slow down in the process of voting. They want the rest of us to us stand in line long enough to start worrying that they will target us next. Fear and intimidation, leading to disenfranchisement of a major part of the electorate.
Over the next eight days, concerned Clevelanders are finding and speaking with every Kerry voter in every neighborhood. Hundreds have volunteered to make sure their neighbors have transportation and child care so they can go to the polls. And others will be outside the polls so they can assist those whom the Republicans have targeted. Pray we're doing enough.
So you're right again BuzzFlash. The wolves in the White House will devour democracy unless the will of the people prevails. I know because I'm living at Ground Zero in the fight to take back our country and I can hear their howls. It's time to turn anger into resolve.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Fwd: The Guardian...a legacy of mistrust and fear
In spite of what the partisan Gallup poll says, Kerry can and must win. This country is in dire need of new leadership before the Bush regime can do further damage. All it will take is a large voter turnout, and I believe voters will vote in numbers this election like never before. I have voted a straight Dem early voting ballot, because this country has a Repub majority in Congress which is just as bad as the present administration and has to be voted back to the minority party.
Republican leadership is taking this country down through bad policies, and like our broken borders, needs competent leadership to take corrective action to put this country back on course into the 21st century. VOTE THE ROTTEN REPUBS OUT!
Subject: Start packing!
From the looks of things, it would appear that the chimp's campaign is about to implode. My prediction is that Kerry will win by a comfortable margin, thereby eliminating the necessity of recounts throughout the country. If my prediction is correct, I would like to propose the following:
On Nov. 3, or whatever day the moron concedes defeat, BuzzFlashers throughout the country send an empty box to the White House addressed as follows:
No need to put a return address on the box (maybe Crawford, TX). And it doesn't have to be a big box. In all probability the boxes will be forwarded to an undisclosed location. However, wouldn't be cool if the media got wind of thousands of boxes addressed to the ex pres and his robotic wife admonishing them to START PACKING! Better yet, maybe the "internets" would catch on to the idea and millions of boxes will be sent. Oh, and by the way, don't forget to mark on the boxes, "PLEASE RECYCLE," in the interest of saving the environment.
What ya think, guys and gals?
Howard in Phoenix
Subject: Tennessee Newspaper Switches Endorsement to Kerry
Much to my surprise, here in Memphis, Tennessee, The Commercial Appeal has endorsed Senator John F. Kerry for president! This is another paper that backed Bush in 2000.
Subject: Voting or Votive?
Hi All You B-Fers,
I just wanted to say keep up the great work; as well as share with you my portentous early voting experience today in Beverly Hills, California...
I voted early today on the new very confusing touch-screen (and I have an M.A. and am a practicing Marriage and Family Therapist...so not tooo stupid) Diebold (paper-trail-less - why?) voting machine; held the filled-in sample ballot up next to the screen as I proceeded at the speed of molasses in January through the procedure only to discover at the end of the process not one but TWO errors (no, it wasn't Bush instead of Kerry...this time...but related to two state propositions) that I was forced to go back and correct.
As I corrected the first error and then continued through the pages to the end, I reconfirmed the remainder of my choices until I (again) arrived at the final page before submitting my ballot only to find a second mistake. And I had received instructions on how to use the touch-screen system courtesy of one of the volunteers there on a demonstration machine.
I'm REALLY concerned about fraud by Diebold whose CEO is an outspoken Bush supporter. Remember that in 2000 Bush was ahead by a purported 10 points in polls before losing both the popular vote AND Electoral College vote until Harris, Jeb, Bush's relative at Fox, the Supremes and all the other Grinches stole it away.
Fool us once...er...we don't get fooled again!!! Be very very scared.
JJ in L.A.
I strongly agree with your editorial saying that Republicans are staging another rigged election. In my state, Florida, the fix is painfully obvious. And you are quite correct in pointing out all the corruption going on in Ohio and elsewhere.
If Americans can ever win back control of their own government some day, it will be time to prosecute these election crimes and make an example of all the Republican leaders, from public officials, judges and election-machine companies, who conspired to steal elections.
The governor of Florida should lead the list of election criminals.
You said, summing up your editorial, "Let's just hope that their plans have a fatal flaw, such as the will of the people triumphing over the treachery of the Bush thugs."
How can that happen? What do you advise people to do on election day to stop the Republican thugs from carrying out their illegal plans? How can regular Americans stop these goons? Should we photograph them? Politely stand in their way when they try to prevent African-Americans from voting? Call the police to come get them? What should we do?
Mike in Florida
Subject: Cha-ching, cha-ching, cha-ching!
Will Bush be requesting loans from China, Japan, and other countries AGAIN? Will our future Americans be born with their share of Bush's debt taped across their little foreheads?
Bush: the credit card president!!!!
Increase in War Funding Sought: Bush to Request $70 Billion More (Washington Post)
Subject: Another Right-Wing Media Outrage
Right-wing Pappas Broadcasting here in California's Central Valley is showing the contempt the right-wing has for democracy in "donating" free airtime to Republican candidates. Pappas Broadcasting claims they're not violating equal time provisions because Democrats can purchase airtime. They're "donating" over $300,000 to the Republicans.
The story is:
Valley broadcaster donates airtime to aid Republicans (Sacramento/Fresno Bee)
I really appreciate your website and read it every day.
Subject: More ineptness from the Buuuush Adm.
Illinois governor (D) trying to get flu vaccine from Europe for nursing homes in the state:
Question: Why is it that the governor has had to step up to the plate? Shouldn't that have been the brainstorm of the FDA, Tommy Thompson?
Subject: Past Presidents hidden by GOP
Doesn't anyone think it mighty strange that Gerald Ford and the first Bush are not campaigning? If they merely wanted to present a neo-con front then Arnold would be coming to campaign. Has Ford refused? Does the former Bush really despise his son that they fear him out there? Or is it that the son hates the father? I think this is mighty weird.
Subject: the Fifth Estate
Jon Stewart is right. The media have dropped the ball on their role as the Fifth Estate. If this were not the case, the story, reported only by the LATimes and Newsweek, of the suppression of the CIA report on who is responsible for 9/11 failures would be on the front page of every national newspaper. The House intelligence committee wrote to the CIA two weeks ago demanding CIA to release its internal report naming those accountable for the Sept. 11 intelligence failures. The report was supposedly completed during the summer. I am asking you "What could possibly be more important for the American people in deciding who to vote for than knowing who is accountable for the failure on 9/11?" I urge you to cover this on the Front Page and let the people decide whether it will influence their decision on November 2nd.
Subject: undecided voters
As difficult as it is to believe there could actually still be truly undecided voters in this election, it's scary to think that some of them are sadly misinformed and/or not really paying attention. Take this example from Becky Davis, an undecided voter in Florida who was interviewed on CNN's "Paula Zahn Now" program Monday night after a story on how the Orlando Sentinel came to endorse John Kerry:
Now quickly flash back to the second debate, the "town hall meeting" in St. Louis (cnn.com):
So, assuming Becky Davis is in a family earning less than $200,000 a year, Kerry didn't just "almost say" he wasn't going to raise her taxes -- he said it point-blank. What more does she need? Or hasn't she been paying attention all along?
If that's her only question about Kerry, it's been answered and she should vote for him. If he's elected and breaks that vow, she has the chance to vote him out in four years. It was, after all, the breaking of many vows that George Bush made in 2000 that caused the Orlando Sentinel to endorse John Kerry four years later. That's how democracy works. Or is supposed to, anyway.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Smile! You're on Camera!
What do you think might happen to the Repugnican anti-voting rights crew if lots of people started showing up at the polls with their videocams?
Is it possible that they might not be so willing to commit these crimes if they are on camera?
Michael J. Fowler
Subject: Denver Post....
You might want to take a look at today's Denver Post editorial section. On Sunday, the Post, which has a reputation as a moderate newspaper, endorsed George Bush with an editorial that mainly emphasized his failures, and stated that he needed to seek a more moderate path. On the opposite page was a lengthy column by two editorial board members in support of Kerry.
Today's Post gives a sampling of letters they received from readers. But more interesting is the Editor's note they put in a box by the letters.
700 letters...all critical. Amazing! (Mine is yet to go...I had to calm down from the "cancel my subscription" frothing of Sunday). One of the best of the published was by Arnold Grossman of Denver:
Subject: Volunteer & Vote !!
Rethuglican domestic-terrorists have already 'attacked' and 'disrupted' elections -- destruction of Democratic registrations, purging of faux felon lists, rigged voting machines which register a vote for FuriousGeorge when a voter chooses Kerry, intimidating voters, sending people to challenge voters in order to slow down the process -- to name just a few. This disruption of the election will continue through election day and possibly beyond. Polls show a dead-even tie between Kerry and Dumbya.
This is NOT GOOD ENOUGH! We MUST win by a LANDSLIDE in order to offset all the Rovian dirty tricks! Buzzers, pleeezze go down to your local Democratic headquarters and volunteer in whatever capacity you can during this critical last week -- they need phone-callers, drivers to the polls, poll monitors, whatever. Then vote early so you can assist with getting other voters to the polls on Tuesday. Help override the dirty tricks!
And it's fun, too -- the spirit is electric & the mood positive!
Subject: Another Sinclair
Look out, folks,
There's another Sinclair out there! They're not preparing to broadcast anti-Kerry material before the election, but Pappas Telecasting Companies bears watching closely. A Yahoo News story today, Broadcaster Donates $325,000 to GOP, tells how the company has given that amount of free air time to 13 republican candidates in California, on both radio and television.
Pappas calls itself "the largest privately held broadcast firm in the nation." A spokesperson for Pappas said the FCC has determined that the "donations" don't require equal time be given to Democrats. Surprise! The company owns 28 stations in 11 states, and operates in most major markets in California.
Makes you wonder: How many more of these companies are there? We heard the alerts about media consolidation, and we understood the dangers, but did anyone really tell us who "they" are? Who's playing "Monopoly" with TV and radio stations instead of little plastic houses and hotels? Sinclair seemed to come out of nowhere, and now Pappas reveals itself, once and for all putting to rest the myth of "liberal media." Who are the others with an agenda who have quietly gobbled up media outlets and lie in wait to acquire more? You can bet I intend to find out.
And while Pappas is making this wonderful donation of free air time to republicans in order to, according to the story, reflect the political views of the company's CEO Harry J. Pappas, they have this paragraph posted on their website under the title of "Mission Statement":
They forgot to add "personal ideology of our executives" to that last line. I encourage those who read this who live in California to protest this station's partisan actions. Remind them of the words in their own mission statement: "public interest," "public trustee," and yes, "responsible businessperson."
Subject: Weekly Reader Lies!
The news is full of the Weekly Reader Poll where school kids picked Bush over Kerry. All the Stories claim that the Weekly Reader Poll has always picked the winner of the election. But it is not true! In 1992, the weekly reader poll picked Bush over Clinton. Check any paper's archive! The Washington Post printed it on 10/14/92.
Subject: Iraqi missing explosives
Regarding the missing explosives, disclosed by the Iraqi government to the IAEA, I noticed the Bush administration has been quoting that the 300-400 Tons missing is a fraction of the 243,000 tons of munitions destroyed. (A tank weighs 25 tons, a dump truck 5 tons.)
The White House rationalization:
MR. ERELI: 10/25/2004
"...something that is included in the Duelfer report, as of mid-September 2004, coalition forces had reviewed and cleared a total of 10,033 caches, weapons caches throughout Iraq, destroying a total of 243,000 tons of munitions..." (US State Department, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2004/37401.htm)
Mr. McClellan - 10/25/2004
"...according to the Duelfer report, as of mid-September, more than 243,000 tons of munitions have been destroyed since Operation Iraqi Freedom. Coalition forces have cleared and reviewed a total of 10,033 caches of munitions; another nearly 163,000 tons of munitions have been secured and are on line to be destroyed. That puts this all -- that puts this all in context." (White House Press Briefing, http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2004/10/20041025-1.html)
However, the National Security Web site 4/19/2004 (indicated by the meta content)
"3. More than 8,200 tons of ammunition, thousands of AK-47s, grenades, and other weapons have been seized throughout Iraq -- much of which was stored by the Hussein regime in hospitals, schools, and mosques." (Ref: NSC http://www.whitehouse.gov/infocus/iraq/part2.html)
What is it, 8,200 tons or 163,000 tons?
Subject: Can you believe it?
Of all the hypocritical mess that I have seen lately, this one is right up there with the top ten. CNN's Judy Woodruff is quoted in the recent AARP magazine, which I happened to pick up at my dad's this morning, saying that her pet peeve is political spin. I could not believe it.
And for all of you that have had less than pleasant visits with their families recently, just add me to the list. My dad says he cannot vote for Kerry because he says "Reporting for Duty"--after my sarcastic remark that we all know Bush certainly can't say that. I calmed down to recite a litany of Bush statements that I could not bear, which started with "there are weapons of mass destruction, bring um on, I'll be taking away your overtime and I can't think of one mistake I have made." Conversation was all down hill from there.
On top of it, my Georgia relatives are all addicted to Neil Boortz--Atlanta's answer to Rush. Since I do not listen to Talk Radio except Air America, I am always startled by the nastiness of the Right. Neil Boortz yesterday morning told his viewers that the informed would vote for Bush and the uniformed, for Kerry. I wish I could have gotten him in a room full of my fellow BuzzFlash readers. Although I doubt he would have appreciated what we would have had to say!
Keep the faith. Next Tuesday is Liberation Day!
Peggy in TX
Subject: Major Flip Flop....
Don't have all the details, but noticed that Bush stated, on an AM television program, that 'we should not base our morality on Hollywood....' A rather odd comment in view of the fact that Aaaaahnold the Terminator is supposed to campaign for him in Ohio!
Subject: About those break-ins
I've repeatedly told everyone who will listen, and some who won't, that the break-ins and vandalism of Republican campaign headquarters around the country are the work of Republicans, not Democrats!
It's just another ploy to make Dems look bad. Have we so soon forgotten the Karl Rove trick of having some of his people deliver "stolen" documents from Republican headquarters to the Al Gore campaign folks? This smacks of Karl Rove in so many ways! Especially, the most recent "vandalism" during which the perpetrators tore down large signs, stepped on them while they wrote obscenities, wrote in "Florida" and "Texas" and then re-hung the signs.
This is not the work of Democrats.
This is the work of Republicans.
Please see if you can find someone who can investigate this. It would not be that hard to do.
Everyone is so busy blaming Democrats, they've never even considered the tactics most loved by Republicans - divide and conquer! Thanks.
A Buzz reader makes a good point about encouraging republicans who don't like bush to "not vote FOR" him. The more people you can sway from bush, the better. Every single person counts. Remember that "not vote FOR" can take several forms: Vote for Kerry; don't vote at all; or vote for Nader (yes, it's okay if republicans vote for Nader -- consider it a vote Kerry wouldn't have received anyway,and another bush won't get.)
My friends and I have been gently working on approachable republicans, and this week are actually seeing the results. One man, deeply conflicted about his support for bush, is apparently not voting. Another actually announced that he is definitely voting for Kerry. A third person said she knows that bush is wrong and confesses that she's not "thrilled" about Kerry, but believes she will end up voting for Kerry after all because, "I'm scared to death. Not of terrorism, but of what the next four years will bring if bush is reelected." That's three people. And there are others that we haven't yet heard of their decisions.
Despite CNN's "reporting" last week that Democrats aren't motivated to vote this election, I'm seeing a completely different story as I walk my precinct for Move On's Leave No Voter Behind program. Democrats are determined, practically jumping out the door to talk with us, railing at bush and his policies, vowing to stand in line to vote, however long it takes. And here in Florida, the early voter turnout is massive.
We're in the home stretch. Keep pushing, keep talking, keep influencing. And keep the faith. The polls are not showing the real picture. There is definitely change in the air.
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