Monday, November 22, 2004

Eyeball news

Okay, I haven't set up a re-direct for The Sideshow yet, but I will as soon as I've properly wrapped my mind around the idea. The whole site is mostly duplicated at its new home now but archives aren't deleted, so your old permalinks to individual posts will still be good.

So do me a favor and change your blogroll links and your favorites ASAP to:

And then you can watch some movies:

Fiore: The Depressed Democrat's Guide to Recovery (Via An Age Like This)

Video: George W. Bush: MISTAKEN

Propagate this link!

I'm now (The www. prefix will work too, but why bother?)

Fact vs. Fantasy in the election

We have two strains of thought: One is that every single indicator of who would win and was winning the presidential election was wrong because of a stealth campaign by Bush that was largely invisible and occurred almost entirely below the radar, to the extent that nothing was indicating a Bush win (except for some cooked polls that have been picked apart to the point of destruction). The other is that the vote itself was cooked.

The first strain is clearly conspiracy theory: that the Republicans somehow, deliberately, managed to hide their campaign and their support completely from experienced watchers who were looking for them, yet somehow their supporters showed up to overwhelm Kerry supporters at the last minute, and nobody saw them.

The facts clearly support the second strain of thought - that the vote was cooked - but the media has chosen to believe that despite any evidence on the ground, a lot of mysterious Bush voters happened to be there when no one was looking. And lied to the exit polls. And did this only in places that were using electronic voting machines owned by a highly-partisan Bush-supporter who had publicly vowed to do whatever he could to bring home the election for Bush.

To believe the "Bush won" conspiracy theory, you have to believe that not only Zogby was wrong, but that both Democrats and Republicans completely altered their behavior and switched their voting patterns, and that Republicans did this in such a way that nobody noticed it even while it was happening.

Democrats vote late in the day. It's always been true, and everyone knows it. When exit polls early in the day say the Democrat is winning by a wide margin, you can take it to the bank that it's not going to get any better for the Republican as people start coming home from work. And that's exactly how it looked on the ground on election day - there was no late surge of Republicans to outnumber the Democrats. And yet, at the last minute, somehow, the polls suddenly started showing Bush coming even and then breaking ahead at a time when there was no sign of these Bush voters suddenly showing up at the polls. How did that happen?

Some folks at Berkeley have done a statistical analysis for us, with all sorts of charts and tables and graphs with color lines and everything, The Effect of Electronic Voting Machines on Change in
Support for Bush in the 2004 Florida Elections
. That's a .pdf (via Bartcop), but here's the finding for those who don't want to be bothered:

Electronic voting raised President Bush's advantage from the tiny edge he held in 2000 to a clearer margin of victory in 2004. The impact of e-voting was not uniform, however. Its impact was proportional to the Democratic support in the county, i.e., it was especially large in Broward, Palm Beach, and Miami-Dade. The evidence for this is the statistical significance of terms in our model that gauge the average impact of e-voting across Florida's 67 counties and statistical interaction effects that gauge its larger-than-average effect in counties where Vice President Gore did the best in 2000 and slightly negative effect in the counties where Mr. Bush did the best in 2000. The state-wide impact of these disparities due to electronic voting amount to 130,000 votes if we assume a "ghost vote" mechanism and twice that - 260,000 votes - if we assume that a vote misattributed to one candidate should have been counted for the other.
Well, now, that's mighty suspicious, isn't it? The suggestion of the machines flipping Kerry votes for Bush is about as subtle as a brick, here, folks.

Need more? How about Was it hacked? in The Orlando Weekly:

How do we know the fix was in? Keefer says the total number of respondents at 9 p.m. was well over 13,000 and at 1:36 a.m. it had risen less than 3 percent - to 13,531 total respondents. Given the small increase in respondents, this 5 percent swing to Bush is mathematically impossible. In Florida, at 8:40 p.m., exit polls showed a near dead heat but the final exit poll update at 1:01 a.m. gave Bush a 4 percent lead. This swing was mathematically impossible, because there were only 16 more respondents in the final tally than in the earlier one.
No, really, you think it was a fair election? Just how big a brick do you need to get hit in the head with?

The New York Times needs a brick the size of Ohio, apparently, and even that may not work. You have to work to ferret out the facts in Matt Bai's Who Lost Ohio? because Bai apparently believes it's good enough to say that, well, since Kerry lost, the Republicans must have done a better job than anyone noticed at the time. But here we have people actually going out and looking at the supposedly conservative boondocks counties that made an 11th-hour swing for Bush, right at the moment they are supposedly making the swing, and there's no one there - except a few straggling Kerry voters. It's not just that no one saw the Bush campaign, but there weren't many signs of Bush voters at the polls at the time when this surge of same was supposed to be suddenly swamping what had until then been a commanding Kerry lead.

No, I'm sorry. All of the facts say that people voted for Kerry. Only the machines disagree. The only real question at this point is why Keith Olbermann seems to be the only person in Big Media who thinks that theories about the magical/invisible Bush surge aren't good enough to counteract the facts.

Around the web

More from Oliver Willis' Brand Democrat project

Kevin Drum has a short round-up of some of our favorite examples of moral values by the returned Republican-controlled Congress. Buying Sailor George a yacht was a particularly popular choice. (Atrios liked that one, too.) Not that we think he can pilot a boat any better than he can ride a horse....

At Salon, Joe Conason says a document has been declassified that proves Richard Clarke was telling the truth and Bill Frist was slandering him. blog is keeping track of the stolen election stories.

Summer Cosmetic Must-Haves!

Sunday, November 21, 2004

Election stories

Then: Election Worker Refuses to Lie for Voting Software Company:

Marion County Clerk Doris Anne Sadler revealed Tuesday that the company installed illegal software before last November's election.
1st Tuesday: First hand reports by other Ohio volunteers:
5. There were numerous reports of voters trying to select Kerry and Bush was selected on the screen instead. The voters would try repeatedly to get Kerry to come up. Voters were only allowed three "pushes." They were told they could request a different machine, but of course by the time they were on the phone with the Election Protection project workers, it must have been too late.

6. There were also reports of voters getting to the review screen and seeing "No Selection." For president. This was often at the same polling places where machines were breaking down. Voters could not get their vote for Kerry for president to register.

9. Another GOP challenger asked a voter for a Green Card in order to get a provisional ballot. The voter called in to find out what a Green Card is. Of course, this was a trick. Voters must be citizens.

10. Machines at some polls had to be re-set after every voter. This took so long that people started to leave. This Election Protection project lawyer and her colleagues sent food out to the voters. They sent food out to voters at different precincts at least three times during the day to encourage them to stay in line.

Now: David Rees says Chin Up. (via)
Enlightenment strikes again
So....What Happened To The Truth? : The Crushed Optimism of a Young Republican

I am, and have always been, a registered Republican. I grew up in a Republican family in a Republican area, and went to church every Sunday with other southern white Republicans. I went to a private Lutheran College in NC. Growing up, we had Boy Scouts, and bake sales, and school plays with lots of other white Republican families. We didn't hang around white kids because we were racist, that's just all there were.
You know, there really is more to the Bible than "striking down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who seek to destroy and poison my brothers."(Ezekiel 25:17) I read that part, too, and it even showed up in a movie! But let us remember that in that verse, God is the one doing the striking, not a man. Look, George W. Bush is not the Holy Sheriff. George Bush is Barney Fife, and I wish he would put his bullet back in his shirt pocket and go back to his fake-ass Dude Ranch in Crawford. Religion is important to people all over the world, but we should all know by now that it makes very poor public policy. Religion and Government DO NOT MIX! Church-Run Day Care Programs are great, but never forget that 9/11 was a Faith-Based Initiative, too.
What has brought this to a head for me is our last election, which, despite the dismissals by Diebold and others, really does look like it was stolen. "But your side won!" I hear you say. Yes, we won, but there is no honor in winning this way. I'm pretty sure I could whip anybody in chess if my friends snuck in and took my opponent's queen and bishops away, but even though I had the trophy and cash prize, I don't think I'd feel very good about it. You're not a bad-ass street fighter if your friend kicks the wheelchair out from under the Vietnam Vet you're fighting so you can kick him in the teeth while he's down.

This is no wild "conspiracy theory", by the way. I've done a great deal of research - it's on my site and many others. It really does look like the 2004 election was stolen. By us.

I saw this four years ago, after the selection - a number of Republicans and libertarians I know were saying they were never going to vote Republican again after what happened in Florida and Bush v Gore. They've been dribbling away ever since, after the appointment of Ashcroft, or finding out that Bush ignored the warnings before 9/11, or the Patriot Act and the war and so on. So, welcome to a new cycle.
Hey, it worked for Bush....

Blunkett plans tough new anti-terror laws

LONDON (Reuters) - The government is considering new tough anti-terrorism laws to prevent an al Qaeda attack including plans to target suspects even if they have not committed an offence, Home Secretary David Blunkett will say today.

The proposals would see the creation of special anti-terror courts which would sit without juries, allowing information obtained from phone taps to be used as evidence in trials, and civil orders against people suspected of planning terrorism.

Those breaching such orders could face jail even if they have not committed a crime.

There's not actually anything to stop them passing it if they want to, but it has nothing to do with anyone being afraid of terrorism. It's probably just that their afraid to vote for the Lib Dems like they ought to.
Make 'em pay
2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State. -- Amendment 14, Clause 2, United States Constitution
Someone should work out how many Congressbeings should lose their seats in Washington.
Cooking the vote

Flan points to another "insightful analysis from Glenn Reynolds," which reads, in its entirety, as follows:

The link is to a silly item in the Daily Telegraph last week gloating about how Michael Moore didn't deliver the election for Kerry after all and snorting that it took him three days to make any public remarks about it. But this bit caught my eye:
In 2000, Mr Moore's support for Ralph Nader helped lose Florida for Al Gore. This time, he boosted President Bush by outraging Middle America. Take a bow, Mike: you've done it again.
For the first time, I was called to ask myself: Do we actually know that Nader made any difference? I just keep remembering all these sudden reversals in the count and I can't help thinking that if there had been no Ralph Nader in the race, those votes would simply have been shifted to someone else at the 11th hour - and not by the voters. We've already seen a voting machine glitch case in this year's election where votes for Dems were "accidentally" registered for the Libertarian candidates. We have no assurance that this hasn't happened in numerous other races.

Speaking of which, OpEdNews is keeping a page of links on the voting problems in the 2004 race. So, of course, is WhatReallyHappened.

Important stuff

One of the things I've neglected over the last few days that Josh Marshall started was the idea of calling your Republican reps and demanding to know whether they voted for the DeLay rule or whether they were part of the "handful" of Republican Congressional members who actually refused to support it. A tiny number of people have had some good news, but a lot of Republicans just aren't answering.

In another story, Josh has details on the insertion of an interesting clause into the omnibus spending bill by an Oklahoma Republican. It would exempt designated individuals from criminal penalties if they spy on your tax records on behalf of politicians.

The provision was slipped into the bill at the last moment. And, at least on the Democratic side, no one was told about it until some Dems caught it at the last moment.

Senate Republicans quickly backtracked, calling the provision a mistake or snafu and insisting they knew nothing about it. You can see some of the back-and-forth that took place on the Senate floor in this AP piece at CNN.

Josh wants to know where the idea for it came from and whether anyone will pretend to discipline Rep. Istook.

AmericaBlog has a good reason to write a letter to Michael Getler, the ombudsman at The Washington Post: The Washington Post yesterday published a magazine ad supplement, bought by religious right groups, that is one of the most bigoted homophobic things I have ever read. I am astonished the Post would print this filth.

But you knew that, right?

From Political Animals, via Bartcop

Saturday, November 20, 2004

War stories

Iraqi Physician Confirms US Chem Weapons Use In Fallujah: Anger that is seething throughout Iraq and the world over the assault on Fallujah turned to rage yesterday as an Iraqi physician came forward to confirm reports of the use of banned chemical weapons in Fallujah. Speaking on the condition of anonymity to the Panorama radio station, the physician said he had just examined two dead bodies and confirmed that the victims died of banned chemical weapons. The physician found no evidence of bullet wounds, shrapnel, or any objects penetrating the bodies.

CAPITOL HILL The videotaped shooting of a Fallujah combatant by a U-S Marine has evoked strong emotions in the Arab world and on Capitol Hill. The remedy? Fallujah Video has congressman calling for reporter ban

Can the media be educated?

Is it possible that the Newspaper of Record has actually learned from a mistake? Dig this - they've got an editorial about the Iran rumblings called Groundhog Day: Stop us if you've heard this one before. The Bush administration creates a false sense of urgency about a nuclear menace from a Middle Eastern country. Hard-liners talk about that country's connections to terrorists. They portray European diplomatic efforts to defuse tensions as a feckless attempt to appease a rogue nation whose word can never be trusted anyway. Secretary of State Colin Powell makes ominous-sounding warnings about new intelligence, which turns out to be dubious.

More on the Ohio vote

Lawyers to challenge election in Ohio:

Columbus- A trio of activist lawyers armed with mysteriously wrong exit polls and hundreds of voter horror stories announced plans Friday to contest Ohio's presidential election as soon as the vote is official.

Their challenge could lead to widespread reconsideration of dozens of alleged election irregularities around the state - from reported computerized voting glitches to provisional-ballot mishaps to unusual incidents involving voter rolls, poll workers and machine technicians.

Of course, no one knows when, exactly, any of this will be completed.
The Church of Reality

Those of you who aren't familiar with Marc Perkel ought to know that he's One of the Good Guys and works hard to keep lefties on the web. Aside from being a helpful web provider, he has a sense of humor and is into the reality-based community in a big way. So visit The Church of Reality, and check out some wonderful Ozark scenery photos while you're there.

The knives are out

First there is John Podhoretz in The New York Post on GOP Arrogance:

WHAT is the great Demo cratic hope over the next four years? The answer isn't Hillary.
Nor is it the magical unknown figure Democrats have been fantasizing about - a Blue State liberal in Red State clothing who sounds like Barney Fife, prays like Billy Graham, sweet-talks like Bill Clinton and lives like George W. Bush. The hope is that this heroic avatar would be able to "communicate" the Democratic message more clearly to the American heartland - just as long as he and his consultants can figure out just what that message is aside from gay marriage, abortion rights and affirmative action.

There is no great Democratic hope in the Democratic Party.

No, the Democrats' great hope is Republican arrogance.

We've just gotten an unfortunate taste of that arrogance in the astonishing decision of the House Republican caucus to change a key rule for the purpose of protecting a single powerful GOP House leader.
Why the change? Because the No. 2 House Republican, Tom DeLay, is in danger of being indicted back in his home state of Texas.

And then there is David Brooks in The New York Times with A Scandal Waiting to Happen:
Tom DeLay is bleeding and he doesn't even know it.

This week, House Republicans bent their accountability rules to protect their majority leader from what they feel is a partisan Texas prosecutor. But they hated the whole exercise. They sat in a conference room hour after hour wringing their hands. Only a few members were brave enough to stand up and say they shouldn't bend the rule. But afterward, many House Republicans came up to those members and said that secretly they agreed with them.

So, the stage is being set to cut The Hammer loose, it seems. The meme has been unleashed, the talking-points passed out among the shills and hacks: The House Republicans have been given permission to stop playing ball with Tom DeLay.
Hot news at Talk Left

In Congress: Negotiators Add Abortion Clause to Spending Bill. This is being advertised as protecting the conscience of doctors who don't want to provide abortions, but federal law already does this, so it's another stealth bill. This thing allows insurers and other institutions to claim a "conscience" that we all know they don't have. Having already allowed anti-abortion terrorists to frighten many doctors out of providing abortion, the march to forced pregnancy is taking the next step. Barbara Boxer is on the case:
"I am willing to stand on my feet and slow this thing down," Ms. Boxer said. "Everyone wants to go home, I know that, and I know I will not win a popularity contest in the Senate. But they should not be doing this. On a huge spending bill they're writing law, and they're taking away rights from women."
In the media: Clinton Rips Starr, Media on Prosecution:
In a prime-time television outburst, Bill Clinton ripped old nemesis Kenneth Starr and what the former president portrayed as a gullible media eager to report every "sleazy thing" leaked from a prosecutor bent on bringing him down.
President Bill lets Peter Jennings have it over the lousy job they did at holding Starr and the Republicans to account. The article has some satisfying quotes.

In the White House: Pardon Me:
Case statistics released last month by the Office of the Pardon Attorney in the Justice Department show that, since assuming office, Bush has granted a total of 25 pardons while he has denied 839 applications. His pardon grant rate is thus about 3% of all requests acted upon. (He has also denied 3,446 commutation requests, and that grant rate has too many zeroes to be meaningful.) By contrast, most Presidents in the past 100 years have granted between 20% and 30% of the pardon applications they considered.
Of course, his father didn't pardon a lot of people, either, having apparently saved most of his compassion for his personal friends and co-conspirators. If he'd had more friends, his own record would have been higher. If we ever get the little prince out of the White House, look for him to suddenly up his percentage when he absolves his entire cabinet of any accountability.

(Jeralyn, you really must come visit me in London.)
That old soft shoe

No More Mister Nice Blog applauds a couple of Democrats for being willing to condemn an alleged liberal radio talk-show host (no one I've ever heard of, but we don't get a lot of that around here) for calling Condi Rice Aunt Jemima. He also called Colin Powell an Uncle Tom.

That's poor form, for a number of reasons, but I'm not impressed with Senator Feingold and Mayor Cieslewicz for going after the guy. That's Democrats for ya - won't catch them letting some bigmouth insert himself into the public discourse where he might pollute the otherwise pristine landscape that Limbaugh, Savage, Coulter et al. have given us.

At least the guy apologized:
"It is with a heavy heart that I apologize this morning to Aunt Jemima," John "Sly" Sylvester said on WTDY-AM in Madison. "She wasn't a self-serving hack politician who got up in front of Congress and lied. Aunt Jemima didn't kowtow to Don Rumsfeld or Dick Cheney."
He said Aunt Jemima was really a "strong, independent black woman" named Nancy Green. Born a slave in Kentucky, Green was hired in the 1890s to advertise the pancake mix.

"Aunt Jemima never lied about yellow cake uranium, she just makes a damn good pancake," Sylvester said.
And no doubt the advertisers figured she was a symbol of that nice lady who worked for your mom and was "just like part of the family."

I'm not quite sure what Condi and Colin are. As someone who came out of the house in DC, I have to admit I was mighty uncomfortable watching Powell say all those things he knew were lies and didn't agree with. But I bet an awful lot of people back on my home turf had trouble not thinking of those two as tokens. They may still feel that way about Powell. I have the impression they think considerably less of Condi.
Sex and the rest

AMERICAblog is closely following the important story of Senator Brownback's campaign against masturbation.

Economist of the Day: Angry Bear on Alan Greenspan's recent announcement that things are bad for the dollar but don't worry, be happy, because the US economy is magic. (Via the Blogwire at LiberalOasis, which you want to read anyway for Bill's take on Dubya's Odd Trial Balloon, among other things.)

Kevin Drum has a trick question: Which of these famous institutions has the most data? A. Wal-Mart B. The entire internet The answer can be found in this article in the NYT.

The Higher Pie has a nice David Horsey cartoon.
The Values Thing

In Stand up For Moral Value of Economic Justice, Michael Zweig asks:
But this easy amazement obscures a deeper problem: If the Democratic Party platform and candidate for president embodied moral values more faithfully than the Republicans, why didn't a large percentage of people voting Democratic cite moral values as their highest concern?
Just for the record, I did, on the last Zogby poll that was done immediately after the election. Of course it's about moral values. Bush violated all of 'em.

Friday, November 19, 2004

A few good links

David Podvin says the south has risen again.

Alterman has a good post up exploring the question of objectivity in the press.

Check out this series on "Values" Oliver Willis posted. Then wear them on t-shirts and make them into fliers to stick under the windshield wipers at the mall parking lot.

Don't you hate those things? Finally, someone figured out what to with one. (Via PNH.)

I like the image at the top of this page.

Ego scans

Thanks to Jack K. at RuminateThis, Jeralyn at TalkLeft, and Mary at The Left Coaster for your concern over The Sideshow blinking out yesterday. Thanks also to the people who wrote to express similar concern, especially those that offered to hit the tip jar. I'm still not sure what's going to happen yet, but it will probably cost money, so if you really want to make a donation to the project - bearing in mind that my PayPal account is a free one and doesn't accept credit card payments (the finks), here's the button:

In other ego news, I was fooling around with Google Scholar, which I saw linked at Electrolite, and found my name in this paper which is, "an exploration of the growing taste for amateur or "reality" pornography, situating it within the larger context of the rise of reality genres more generally." So there you are.
How much more do you need?

'Stinking Evidence' of Possible Election Fraud Found in Florida by Thom Hartmann:
Bev Harris of, the erstwhile investigator of electronic voting machines, along with people from Florida Fair Elections, showed up at Florida's Volusia County Elections Office on the afternoon of Tuesday, November 16, 2004, and asked to see, under a public records request, each of the poll tapes for the 100+ optical scanners in the precincts in that county. The elections workers - having been notified in advance of her request - handed her a set of printouts, oddly dated November 15 and lacking signatures.

Bev pointed out that the printouts given her were not the original poll tapes and had no signatures, and thus were not what she'd requested. Obligingly, they told her that the originals were held in another location, the Elections Office's Warehouse, and that since it was the end of the day they should meet Bev the following morning to show them to her.

Bev showed up bright and early the morning of Wednesday the 17th - well before the scheduled meeting - and discovered three of the elections officials in the Elections Warehouse standing over a table covered with what looked like poll tapes. When they saw Bev and her friends, Bev told me in a telephone interview less than an hour later, "They immediately shoved us out and slammed the door."

In a way, that was a blessing, because it led to the stinking evidence.

"On the porch was a garbage bag," Bev said, "and so I looked in it and, and lo and behold, there were public record tapes."
The outcome of that debate was that they all went from the Elections Warehouse back to the Elections Office, to compare the original, November 2 dated and signed poll tapes with the November 15 printouts the Elections Office had submitted to the Secretary of State. A camera crew from met them there, as well.

And then things got even odder.

"We were sitting there comparing the real [signed, original] tapes with the [later printout] ones that were given us," Bev said, "and finding things missing and finding things not matching, when one of the elections employees took a bin full of things that looked like garbage - that looked like polling tapes, actually - and passed by and disappeared out the back of the building."

This provoked investigator Ellen Brodsky to walk outside and check the garbage of the Elections Office itself. Sure enough - more original, signed poll tapes, freshly trashed.
But the Ollie North action in two locations on two days was only half of the surprise that awaited Bev and her associates. When they compared the discarded, signed, original tapes with the recent printouts submitted to the state and used to tabulate the Florida election winners, Harris says a disturbing pattern emerged.

"The difference was hundreds of votes in each of the different places we examined," said Bev, "and most of those were in minority areas."

When I asked Bev if the errors they were finding in precinct after precinct were random, as one would expect from technical, clerical, or computer errors, she became uncomfortable.

"You have to understand that we are non-partisan," she said. "We're not trying to change the outcome of an election, just to find out if there was any voting fraud."

That said, Bev added: "The pattern was very clear. The anomalies favored George W. Bush. Every single time."

This is, by the way, the same county that on election night in 2000 suddenly flipped for Bush when thousands of votes simply disappeared off the boards - votes that had already been recorded and broadcast. It was explained away at the time as a "computer glitch" - that is, the machines had accidentally recorded some 16,000 votes for Gore that he didn't really get, and someone had to "correct" it. With no further explanation, we were simply expected to dismiss the removal of a significant number of votes before our eyes.

Now we learn that Volusia County turned over forged tapes from the optical-scan machines in response to a Freedom of Information request, and that these forgeries had "errors" that favored George Bush in every case. That's what's known as evidence. It's proof that further investigation is needed and that there is real reason to doubt whether George Bush received the number of votes he is alleged to have won in Florida - possibly even whether he won the state. Anyone who doubts it is being silly.

The difference is, you're reading this

Must-read of the day: Digby has found a fascinating article by Christopher Hayes at The New Republic on undecided voters that provides a somewhat scary look into the minds of the Undecided Voters. Undecided voters do care about politics; they just don't enjoy politics. [...] Undecided voters don't think in terms of issues.
My provider has responded!

I've put up an explanation but I'm not actually sure whether I dare post over at The Sideshow for the moment.

Short version - I had actually been exceeding bandwidth for a couple of months but they suddenly cut me off without warning, claiming the problem had arisin "in the last 24 hours", which obvously wasn't true. I suppose this is my fault for not noticing what my usage limit was to begin with. That's just the sort of thing that would escape my notice. But it does have to be said that my provider isn't particularly good at making things clear. *sigh*

So they want me to upgrade and I've asked them to give me appropriate details and in the meantime I'm comparison-shopping and looking into getting The Sideshow it's own domain name (one that doesn't involve frames) so further emergencies (or future migrations) don't result in this sort of thing again.
Links to ponder

What does the right-wing have that we don't have? Sugar Daddies for the cause. How else could someone like David Horowitz make a living?

How Boring was Bill Clinton's book? Despite what you've heard from some quarters, some of its most "boring" sections are fascinating, and could help Democrats learn how to talk across the divide, according to Bob Somerby.

At The Mahablog, a suggestion for an ad campaign for Radio Free Heartland, so those red-staters will learn what's happening to their health care.

Jeralyn recommends: 8th Circuit Senior Judge Donald Lay has an op-ed in the New York Times today, Rehab Justice. He argues for federal drug courts, like those in the state system. Also, another way Iraq is like Vietnam: Judge to Drug Defendant: Jail or Join Military.

Ruy Teixeira says that alleged rise in Bush's popularity among Hispanic voters doesn't fly once you look at the figures. (Actually, none of the figures make any sense once you look at them. But you knew that, right?)
Blog hits

The Angry Liberal, whose site you might want to check out if you haven't been there before, sent me this joke:
Clocks in Heaven

A man died and went to heaven. As he stood in front of St. Peter at the Pearly Gates, he saw a huge wall of clocks behind him.

He asked, "What are all those clocks?" St. Peter answered, "Those are Lie-Clocks. Everyone on Earth has a Lie-Clock. Every time you lie the hands on your clock will move."

"Oh," said the man, "whose clock is that?"

"That's Mother Teresa's. The hands have never moved, indicating that she never told a lie."

"Incredible," said the man. "And whose clock is that one?"

St. Peter responded, "That's Abraham Lincoln's clock. The hands have moved twice, telling us that Abe told only two lies in his entire life."

"Where's President Bush's clock?" asked the man.

"Bush's clock is in Jesus' office. He's using it as a ceiling fan."
In other news just look at this idiotic thing someone wrote about Patrick and Teresa.
No Fourth Estate, no democracy

At Consortium News, Sam Parry is not too happy with the sniffy response they got from a certain newspaper on their serious look at voting problems:
Washington Post's Sloppy Analysis

The Washington Post and the big media have spoken: Questions about Nov. 2 voting irregularities and George W. Bush’s unusual vote tallies are just the ravings of Internet conspiracy theorists.

In a Nov. 11 story on A2, the Post gave the back of its hand to our story about Bush's statistically improbable vote totals in Florida and elsewhere. While agreeing with our analysis that Bush pulled off the difficult task of winning more votes in Florida than the number of registered Republicans, the Post accuses us of overlooking the obvious explanation that many independents, "Dixiecrats" and other Democrats voted for Bush.

Mocking us as "spreadsheet-wielding conspiracy theorists," Post reporters Manuel Roig-Franzia and Dan Keating signaled their determination to put questions about Bush's victory outside the bounds of responsible debate. Yet, if they hadn't been so set in this agenda, they might have avoided sloppy mistakes and untrue assertions.

In an example of their slipshod reporting, Roig-Franzia and Keating state that we focused our data analysis on rural counties in Florida. They suggest that Bush's gains in these rural counties might be explained by the greater appeal of son-of-the-South Al Gore in 2000 than Bostonian John Kerry in 2004.

But we didn't focus on rural counties in Florida. Rather we looked at the vote tallies statewide and zeroed in on Bush's performance in the larger, more metropolitan counties of southern and central Florida, where Bush got the vast majority of his new votes over his state totals in 2000.

It was in these large counties where Bush's new totals compared most surprisingly with new voter registration because Democrats did a much better job in many of these counties of registering new voters. In other words, Bush outperformed Kerry among a relatively smaller ratio of Republicans to Democrats in many of these counties.

Also undermining the Post's claims, Kerry actually improved on Gore's total in the smallest 20 counties in Florida by 5,618 votes -- 50,883 votes for Kerry vs. 45,265 for Gore, a 12.5% increase. So, even the Post's notion that Gore's Southern heritage made him more attractive to rural Floridians doesn't fit with the actual results.
And that's just the first bit. But it's oddity piled upon oddity, and the "debunking" you may have seen of the questionable ballot tallies just doesn't explain them. Do read the rest.
International conversation

Remember Sorry Everybody?

Well, Everybody answered: Apologies Accepted
I see going out didn't make the world change

Free-Online still hasn't responded to my wailing, so The Sideshow is still down.

Meanwhile, here are a couple of pages I found in my referrers tonight:

Andrew Tobias linked the Dwight Meredith page I have up at The Sideshow Annex, Just For The Record, in a piece called Duccio di Borealis explaining that Democrats are better than Republicans at handling the economy. But I went over to his front page where he has a good Thomas Oliphant article up, on The Gay Marriage Deception, pointing out that the laws in question ban a great deal more than gay marriage (which is why they are unlikely to survive court challenges) and talking a bit more generally about how this is Bush's MO.

I also found GratisNet, which doesn't appear to have permalinks for entries but also liked Dwight's "Just For The Record" enough to cache the page at their site, and had some interesting entries on the front page. I was particularly interested in this one:
Salem witch trials ahead? 11-14-04
Last week, on ABC News This Week with George Stephanopoulos, James Dobson was asked about his comment to an Oklahoma City newspaper that "Patrick Leahy is a 'God's people-hater.' I don't know if he hates God, but he hates God's people," when Stephanopoulos remarked that it seemingly was not a Christian thing to say about the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee. Dobson questioned whether Stephanopoulos should "lecture me on what a Christian is all about?"

It is fairly obvious that someone needs to lecture Dobson on what it means to be a Christian, for it is more than obvious that, if he ever knew what it meant, his recent words and deeds indicate he has lost the knowledge.

Meanwhile, I have fired off a few more grumpy words to my provider but have given up hope of hearing from them tonight.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

The fight goes on

At The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Democrats take up fight over ballots

Cincinnati - Seeming to brush aside John Kerry's concession speech, the Ohio Democratic Party has launched a federal court fight over nearly 155,000 provisional ballots by contending a proper accounting of those votes might decide who really won.

In Ohio, Bush now holds a lead of about 136,000 votes over Kerry.

The fight seems to have ended in New Mexico, but here's a curiosity:

After two weeks of controversy, lawsuits and national scrutiny, New Mexico's vote counting ended with 86 ballots being found Tuesday in a locked bathroom in the Doña County Courthouse.
My suspicion is a DOS attack at The Sideshow. I haven't heard back from my ISP yet.

Meanwhile, Atrios has a pretty important piece of news this morning from The Washington Post about a major tax shift the administration has proposed that advances the movement of the tax burden to workers-only. If they really do this, though, it may work out to quite the opposite of what they intended. If employers stop offering health insurance altogether things could get very interesting indeed.

Meanwhile, Huey says it best:

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

The Republican legality strategy of Rove
by Jerome Armstrong

It's becoming clearer as the vote approaches. Just today, the Republicans in Oregon challenged thousands of registered voters in Portland, OR; yesterday, it was the Republicans in Wisconsin challenging likely Democratic voters in Milwaukee, WI; before that in Ohio & Florida. There are literally thousands of Republicans that the GOP has planned to move into predominant black preciencts tomorrow in Cleveland, OH, to challenge voters (I'll believe the rulings to the contrary of this happening when the reality matches the ruling).

What are Republicans doing? Simply, they are laying the groundwork to challenge the election results by attacking the vote of those who live in cities within contested states.

Stupid & Delusional
Ken Layne
Howell Raines -- the jackass who made a total joke of the New York Times, the fool who randomly directed the paper's energies at a golf club in Georgia rather than the venal gang of profiteers steering the nation to disaster, the enlightened editor who ignored the horrible truths about Sept. 11 in favor of maudlin capsule obituaries and a wretched Oprah-inspired daily special section comically titled "A Nation Challenged," the awards whore who unquestioningly trumped up the phony Bush case for invading Iraq in hopes he & the Chalabi toady Judith Miller would get a Pulitzer -- writes a loathsome column for a Florida paper in which he sniffs the air and finds it's all the fault of Rupert Murdoch and the Internet. Fantastic.