Continued from earlier post.
BUSH'S WAR ON THE FREE PRESS
"America's leadership is waging war against the journalistic standards and practices that underpin not only a free press but our democracy. The Fourth Estate is withering under an unprecedented White House assault designed to intimidate, smear and discredit investigative journalism, and allow the president and his political cronies to lie with impunity. If left unchecked, this and future administrations will continue to:
• manipulate the media "message" by producing propaganda, putting journalists on the government payroll and tightly scripting all public events;
• dismiss all dissenting views in the media as biased and politically motivated;
• undermine public trust in journalism using the right-wing ìecho chamberî to sow hostility toward reporters who challenge the official line; and
• eliminate access to information making it nearly impossible for journalists to investigate vast swathes of the federal government."
And if you think that's bad, take a look at Bush's Media Agenda:
"The current administration is more inhospitable to truth and an informed citizenry than any before it. In fact, the administration seeks the opposite: a public that buys a carefully constructed myth over reality. This deception has manifest in seven lines of attack:
• Infiltrating public broadcasting with party loyalists
• Manufacturing fake news and propaganda
• Bribing journalists to flack for the administration
• Gutting the Freedom of Information Act
• Deceiving media (and the U.S. public) about Iraq
• Stifling dissent within mainstream media
• Consolidating media control into the hands of the elite"
Read more here: Free Press : War on the Press at freepress.net.
Find out how to fight back here: Free Press : Become an E-Activist
Also see: Planted Propaganda - Washington Post:
"The problem with this propaganda, as senior military officials who blew the whistle on it understood, is that it undermines the very effort it is trying to promote. An essential element of a democracy is a free press, not one controlled or covertly manipulated by government."
PHOTO: President Bush walks back to the Oval Office of the White House, with his senior adviser Karl Rove, left, after attending a Republican National Committee luncheon, Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2005 in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
RAMPANT CORRUPTION IN WASHINGTON
Every day brings a new investigation into more corruption. This is how Bush has kept his promice to restore honor and values to the government (after Clinton): By ushering in an administration that tramples citizen rights in favor of corrupt corporations, courts corruption and graft, and defends crooks, torture, and illegal wars. Waaa hooo! Thanks for cleaning up, George.
More: Crooked Capital by Howard Kurtz, The Washington Post
PHOTO: Jack Abramoff. (Carol T. Powers for The New York Times)
•Lobbyist's Role in Hiring Aides Is Investigated By Anne E. Kornblut, New York Times
•t r u t h o u t - Frank Rich | All the President's Flacks by Frank Rich, New York Times
Frank Rich offers insight to the Bob Woodward affair with the Valerie Plame CIA leak, opening a window into the White House flimflams and the press's role in enabling them.
FIXING THE GAME AT THE POLLS (Better known as Vote Fraud)
"[T]he Bush administration seems to be losing sight of the fact that the rules...say the majority party of the moment may not use its powers to strip citizens of their rights, politicize the judicial system or rig the election process to keep itself in office.
There are sections of the Justice Department that are supposed to be dedicated to enforcing the laws that protect the rights of all Americans, not just Republican officeholders and the people who give them money. The Civil Rights Division, for example, has enforced anti-discrimination laws, including the sacred Voting Rights Act, since the 1960's, under more Republican presidents than Democratic presidents...."
"The Justice Department under John Ashcroft and now Alberto Gonzales has [repeatedly] abused its law-enforcement mandate in the service of the Republican majority." Appointed Political Cronies consistently overrule voters rights. All the better to insure they stay in power, my dear:
• ILLEGAL REDISTRICTING
The 2003 Texas redistricting plan illegally diluted the votes of blacks and Hispanics in order to ensure a Republican majority in the state's Congressional delegation. Despite protests from lawyers, "the plan was shoved through the Texas State Legislature by Representative Tom DeLay, who abused his federal position in doing so and is now facing criminal charges over how money was raised to support the redistricting."
Last month, the Post reported that political appointees also overruled voting rights lawyers who rejected a Georgia law requiring that voters without a picture ID buy one for $20 - at offices that were set up in only 59 of the state's 159 counties.
See also: Gonzales Defends Approval of Texas Redistricting by Justice by Dan Eggan, Washington Post
PHOTO: Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales cited court rulings and poll results. (Reuters)
• ILLEGAL POLL TAX
"Political appointees overruled voting rights lawyers who rejected a Georgia law requiring that voters without a picture ID buy one for $20 - at offices that were set up in only 59 of the state's 159 counties. The Justice Department falsely claimed that the decision to O.K. the law - which was little more than a modern-day version of a poll tax aimed at reducing turnout among poor minorities - was made with the concurrence of the career lawyers. A federal court later struck down the law, properly."
Related articles: Ohio Republicans plan holiday burial for American Democracy by Bob Fitrakis & Harvey Wasserman, The Free Press
• CRONY APPOINTEES GUT CIVIL RIGHTS
"President Bush's attorneys general have systematically gutted the civil rights division, driving out the career lawyers and shifting the division's focus from civil rights enforcement to deportations, other immigration matters and human smuggling."
For more, read the editorial 'Fixing the Game' by in the New York Times.
CONDONING AND ADVOCATING TORTURE
The media ignores it. (See above: Bush's War on the Media) But the proof is in the military's own autopsy reports.
"Military autopsy reports provide indisputable proof that detainees are being tortured to death while in US military custody. Yet the US corporate media are covering it with the seriousness of a garage sale for the local Baptist Church.
A recent American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) posting of one of forty-four US military autopsy reports reads as follows:
'Final Autopsy Report: DOD 003164, (Detainee) Died as a result of asphyxia (lack of oxygen to the brain) due to strangulation as evidenced by the recently fractured hyoid bone in the neck and soft tissue hemorrhage extending downward to the level of the right thyroid cartilage. Autopsy revealed bone fracture, rib fractures, contusions in mid abdomen, back and buttocks extending to the left flank, abrasions, lateral buttocks. Contusions, back of legs and knees; abrasions on knees, left fingers and encircling to left wrist. Lacerations and superficial cuts, right 4th and 5th fingers. Also, blunt force injuries, predominately recent contusions (bruises) on the torso and lower extremities. Abrasions on left wrist are consistent with use of restraints. No evidence of defense injuries or natural disease. Manner of death is homicide. Whitehorse Detainment Facility, Nasiriyah, Iraq.'"
There's more: Peter Phillips: Death By Torture
See ACLU source documents here: ACLU Source Documents
Related Article: ABC News: EXCLUSIVE: Sources Tell ABC News Top Al Qaeda Figures Held in Secret CIA Prisons
"Current and former CIA officers speaking to ABC News on the condition of confidentiality say the United States scrambled to get all the suspects off European soil before Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived there today. The officers say 11 top al Qaeda suspects have now been moved to a new CIA facility in the North African desert."
PHOTO: Khalid Shaik Mohammed, the operational planner for Sept. 11, is among those allegedly being held in secret prisons. (AP Photo)
See also: Rice's Defense of Renditions Makes No Sense
"Ms. Rice's arguments yesterday hinge on her insistence that rendition was a legitimate and necessary tool for the changed circumstances brought by the war on terror. Her assurances, however, that spiriting terror suspects away to clandestine prisons is a legitimate tactic did not carry much weight with human rights organizations or legal scholars yesterday."
•t r u t h o u t - German Man Claims US Tortured Him
•Merkel: US Admitted Wrongful Abduction of German
A CABAL OF CRIMINALITY
What the Iraq/Bush war shows the world is how a Cabal of Criminality, numbering less than a few hundred individuals, can bamboozle a nation into a war whose ramifications on our future we cannot yet fully comprehend. The Bush war, the single-greatest blunder in America’s foreign policy history, was spawned by greed-addicted corporatists and treasonous neoconartists, presstitute lackeys and political hacks, placed in charge of US foreign policy. More: A Cabal of Criminality By Manuel Valenzuela
See also: CIA Ruse Is Said to Have Damaged Probe in Milan by Craig Whitlock, Washington Post
"Recently filed court documents and interviews in Milan offer fresh details about how the CIA allegedly spread disinformation to cover its tracks and how its actions in Milan disrupted and damaged a major Italian investigation."
PHOTO: This surveillance photo of Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr was found on a disk in the home of the CIA's ranking official in Milan, according to Italian police. (Courtesy Corriere Della Sera)
TO BE CONTINUED...
See earlier post: BUSH: CORRUPTION PERSONIFIED - PART ONE