Category Archives: Politics: US: 2004 Election

The Threat Level Remains Unchanged

Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge has a book coming out in which he says the Bush administration politicized the terror alert system — Tom Ridge: I Fought Against Raising Security Threat Level On The Eve Of 2004 Election. Everyone is very excited about this revelation.

But this isn't really news, is it? Didn't Ridge say more or less the same thing in 2005:

The Bush administration periodically put the USA on high alert for terrorist attacks even though then-Homeland Security chief Tom Ridge argued there was only flimsy evidence to justify raising the threat level, Ridge now says.

And Ridge did it anyway one way or another. He sat there and allowed the national security apparatus to be abused for political gain. He made the country less safe by allowing false alarms. He gave the terrorists free victories they didn't even have to work for. And then he and Cheney trashed Howard Dean and anyone else daring to say it was the unprincipled slimy political move it turns out to be.

Once upon a time we had a concept of “disgrace”. People with money, power, office, social position, actually cared about whether they acted dishonorably, because if they did they wouldn't get invited to corporate boards and dinner parties. People would cross the street to show their disdain. Now we give them book contracts, TV deals, visiting professorships, and they get interviewed as experts by the media.

Maybe it's time to bring the notion of respectability back. If we won't have public justice to sort out truth from fiction, no special prosecutors until after the statute of limitations has run, maybe instead we need a quiet form of the private personal justice we can manage based on the facts on the public record. Shun Ridge. Shun Yoo. Shun Rove. Shun Gonzales. Shun all the torturers and torture enablers, and shun the perverters of law and justice. Don't ever put anything their way. Don't give them a visiting gig. Don't invite them on TV. Don't buy their books. And make it contagious. Make them professional lepers. Make the people who give them treats sorry they did it.

But it won't happen. Not because there's always the risk that social shunning gets out hand, brings out the worst in some people who then punish the innocent, for all that these are real and demonstrated dangers not to be taken lightly. No, it won't happen because the people who put those unprincipled traitors to law and decency in power and who then coined it thanks to their connivance at kleptocracy hope to do it again and again and again. And that means that even used and dishonored tools need to be kept on financial life support so as not to discourage their successors.

Angry? I'm beyond angry. I'm tired of angry.

Nixon was a piker. He kept cash in a safe. These guys moved it by the airplane load.

Posted in National Security, Politics: The Party of Sleaze, Politics: US: 2004 Election | 11 Comments

The Hearing You Are Not Hearing About

“There’s reason to suspect that our 2004 election was stolen.”

A House Administration Committee field hearing will be held today in Columbus, Ohio to look into the allegation that there is something odd about Ohio's numbers. Although whether a Republican-chaired committee will give the matter a fair hearing, which would require breaking through the obstructionist tactics of a very partisan Republican Ohio Secretary of State, remains a question mark.

And the vote process in Ohio needs a real investigation.

Posted in Politics: US: 2004 Election | Leave a comment

More on the $40 Million Inauguration


J.D. Crowe, Alabama — The Mobile Register (spotted via NYT, reproduced via Slate).

Posted in Politics: US: 2004 Election | Leave a comment

Delay, Delay, Don’t (re)Count the Votes

Is there any way to understand this sort of tactic as anything other than an attempt to prevent an honest recount: Ohio Official Refuses Interview Over Vote? (Note that the headline is British understatement — in fact the Ohio Secretary of State is apparently trying to get a court order to block having to explain the weird things he's done to lock out recounters, prevent observers from actually observing, and other very suspicious hijinks.)

Update: The Kerry-Edwards team have intervened in the case to preserve the evidence

Posted in Politics: US: 2004 Election | 4 Comments

Much Smoke In Ohio. But Is There A Fire?

Much to-ing and fro-ing in Ohio:

The Cosmic Iguana has been finding links about Ohio:

But I suspect nothing will come if it all. If this election was stolen — and I’m not at all sure about that — it’s staying stolen.

Continue reading

Posted in Politics: US: 2004 Election | 6 Comments

Wayne Madsen Is At It Again (‘Vote Switching” Software???)

I still think Wayne Madsen is not a nut, and that's why I have to give some credence to this well researched, and highly suggestive albeit not dispositive piece of reporting: Texas to Florida: White House-linked clandestine operation paid for “vote switching” software:

An exhaustive investigation has turned up a link between current Florida Republican Representative Tom Feeney, a customized Windows-based program to suppress Democratic votes on touch screen voting machines, a Florida computer services company with whom Feeney worked as a general counsel and registered lobbyist while he was Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, and top level officials of the Bush administration.

According to a notarized affidavit signed by Clint Curtis, while he was employed by the NASA Kennedy Space Center contractor, Yang Enterprises, Inc., during 2000, Feeney solicited him to write a program to “control the vote.” At the time, Curtis was of the opinion that the program was to be used for preventing fraud in the in the 2002 election in Palm Beach County, Florida. His mind was changed, however, when the true intentions of Feeney became clear: the computer program was going to be used to suppress the Democratic vote in counties with large Democratic registrations.

According to Curtis, Feeney and other top brass at Yang Enterprises, a company located in a three-story building in Oviedo, Florida, wanted the prototype written in Visual Basic 5 (VB.5) in Microsoft Windows and the end-product designed to be portable across different Unix-based vote tabulation systems and to be “undetectable” to voters and election supervisors.

I just hope he's wrong — and I worry that the same hope may cause other people to dismiss this one out of hand rather then trying to find out where the facts lead.

Posted in Politics: Tinfoil, Politics: US: 2004 Election | 13 Comments

New Rumors Swirl Around Ohio Vote Count

I have no idea what to make of this.

Allegedly, a down-ticket Democrat polled 257,000 more votes than Kerry in Ohio. If true — and the web site offers some county-by-county vote figures — that's very odd, as barring the most unusual circumstances the top of the ticket polls well ahead of candidates with very limited advertising budgets. (spotted via Cosmic Iguana)

Bush is currently believed to have carried Ohio by circa 130,000 votes, although exit polls showed a narrow Kerry win. Were Kerry to have won Ohio he would have won the electoral collage although not, on current counts, the popular vote.

The Ohio vote count has had its oddities, notably the apparently false claim that the count in Warren County had to be held behind closed doors without the usual observers due to an FBI terror warning that … didn't exist. It would be enough to make you suspect some hanky-panky were we not all in the grips of … of what exactly?

Posted in Politics: US: 2004 Election | 8 Comments