Sunday, January 09, 2005

It's another big Bush scam. There is NO Social Security crisis, except that Bush is gunning for it.

The Social Security program has built-in self-protection, and that self-protection has been working just fine. In fact, over the past 20 years, the date in the future that the program can no longer pay promised benefits has actually been pushing further and further out into the future, just as it was designed to do.

What is not built into Social Security, however, is self-defense against those who would deliberately weaken it through legislation. Republican planners have wanted since its inception to get rid of Social Security. Now they are trying to exploit their stranglehold on all government mechanisms to do exactly that, over a period of time, of course, because the general public would not allow the tinkering if they fully understood.

Bush's initial proposals would drastically cut future benefits of the now younger work force while dishing out hundreds of billions in fees to his Wall Street pals.

Add to this the fact that the transition cost would be $1 to $2 trillion, which would have to be borrowed, thus further burdening our national debt and risking further economic consequences as a result of that burgeoning debt.

Just as it did leading up to the Iraq War, the right wing propaganda machine is working overtime lying about a crisis that doesn't exist, the need to fix a successful program that is not broken, all to force their aggressive and stingy agenda down working peoples throats. How many times will this gullible American public let Bush and his spendthrift gang of rampaging radicals sucker us into expensive ventures that hurt everyone except the rich?


For more, read this Newsday article.


 

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Preserving Democracy: What Went Wrong in Ohio - Status Report of the House Judiciary Committee Democratic Staff

Nationwide there were tens of thousands of complaints of voter irregularities. When examined in key states, these irregularities almost always broke for Bush. Without massive intentional efforts to determine the outcome (fraud), such an overall break would be statistically impossible.

Download and read this very important document about problems in Ohio to understand how the 2004 burial of Democracy was pulled off in that state, and keep in mind, this report only covers one key state, Ohio.

Preserving Democracy: What Went Wrong in Ohio
Status Report of the House Judiciary Committee Democratic Staff


This report is the record of the only government investigation into organized voter suppression in Ohio, despite numerous citizen complaints to election officials and local and federal law enforcement agencies. The report is backed by the results of hearings on location, expert testimony, and sworn affidavits of election volunteers and disenfranchised voters. Despite what some congressmen claimed today, testimony is evidence.

"With regards to our factual finding, in brief, we find that there were massive and unprecedented voter irregularities and anomalies in Ohio. In many cases these irregularities were caused by intentional misconduct and illegal behavior, much of it involving Secretary of State J. Kenneth Blackwell, the co-chair of the Bush-Cheney campaign in Ohio."


 

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Bush's Sequel to Ashcroft
Heading for Supreme Court If He Serves Bush Well?



 

Thursday, November 11, 2004

More Enough Said


 

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Enough Said


 

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Greg Palast: Ohio's spoiled and provisional ballots would have given Kerry the election

Tom Paine

Not unlike the distribution of other services in many large cities, the best voting equipment often goes to more affluent precincts, where there are more Republican voters, while the worst equipment, most prone to breakdown and error, go to poorer neighborhoods, often African-American, who tend to vote Democratic. It is no surprise, then, that there is a higher "spoilage" rate of ballots in those underprivileged precincts than in others, and unless a candidate demands that they be counted, as in Florida 2000, those ballots are simply discarded with no attempt to discern the intent of the voter.

Read Greg Palast's report on the Ohio and New Mexico elections for unsurprising information about the 2004 presidential election theft, where, if the "spoiled" and provisional ballots were counted, the overall results would match the exit polls that gave Kerry the election.

The Democratic Party is letting the theft go unchallenged because they believe they ultimately could not win the battle to get all the Ohio votes counted, and in the meantime would take a beating from the major media corporations. A lot of people feel the Democratic leadership have rolled over too easily, considering the anticipated catastrophic losses this country faces under another four or more years of iron fist control by the radicals now running the Republican Party.


 

Hmmmm . . . . . . . . .










 

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Radicalism Unleashed


 

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Independent election coverage links


The Nation
With the networks, the cable news stations, radio outlets, newspapers and magazines and, of course, the internet, this election will be the most widely reported electoral contest in US history. So, where are some good places to find independent reporting on [today's] events?
You guessed it, click here.


 

Monday, November 01, 2004

Stolen election deja vu

Nov.3.us

Steve B. Cobble elaborates on tactics that together could steal a second presidential election for George W. Bush. Add to this list "Information manipulation by major media" and see a formidable array of weapons that have the ability to sink the last vestiges of our 200 yr-old experiment with democracy.

  • Striking eligible voters off the rolls

  • Intimidation

  • Abuse of ID cards

  • Time-honored, low-tech cheating

  • Not allowing provisional ballots

  • Manipulating absentee ballots

  • Blocking recounts

  • Abusing the court system

  • Street heat

  • Black box voting

  • Manipulating terror reports, to cancel or postpone elections


See also The Nation's How They Could Steal the Election This Time.


 

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Nov.3.us - Emergency Response to Another Stolen Election

What will you do if Republican partisans steal the presidential election a second time? Those who have already voted appear to be solidly favoring John Kerry for President. However, events already urgently warn us that the same forces that stole the 2000 election are going for a replay. This time, however, many more eyes and cameras are watching. Intense anger lurks just below the surface among Democrats disenfranchised by the 2000 election cheating at all levels. If it happens again in 2004, it appears that it will not go down as easily.

Major corporate media lapdogs aided and abetted the 2000 election theft by playing Three Monkeys, but this time one wonders if they will be able to so easily bury it with their silence if millions of angry Democratic voters are noisily making their demands heard over and over in all parts of the country.

Enter No Stolen Elections! Nov3.us, an emergency response coalition of activist groups vowing immediate non-violent protest in the event of the appearance of another election theft. No doubt, other coalitions would arise as time passed.

If you feel that a second election theft must not go unchallenged by rigorous dissent and that it is time for your voice to be heard also, then you may wish to lend your support to their continuing effort or become an involved activist yourself.

Explore their website. Click on the logo above for a beginning link.


 

How do you spell T-O-T-A-L-I-T-A-R-I-A-N ?



Bush wants to take away individual's freedom to file voting rights lawsuits

In his latest assault on individual rights and in a shameful attempt to protect himself against pesky judgments from voting rights litigation (and those terrible activist judges), Bush has asked that voting rights lawsuits be filed only by his good buddy John Ashcroft, thus ensuring that none would ever be filed on behalf of any Democratic voter.

Watch the Democracy Now! report "Bush Administration Attempts To Overturn Decades of Legal Precedence & Block Voting Rights Lawsuits From Voters."



 

Friday, October 29, 2004

NASA Scientist: Bush WAS Wearing Something Under His Jacket During the Debate

Internationally acclaimed NASA image analysis expert says the debate image clearly shows something under George Bush's jacket, something that could be wiring or tubing. Bush has consistently laughed off the suggestion that he was wearing something and ultimately claimed on Good Morning America that it was nothing more than a poorly tailored shirt.

Read this definitive argument at Salon.




Update: Nov. 5 - Baltimore Chronicle & Sentinel

Just days before the New York Times killed a story about the mysterious object George W. Bush wore on his back during the presidential debates, and the Washington Post and Los Angeles Times also decided not to pursue the story, which featured a leading NASA satellite photo imaging scientist's analysis of pictures of the president’s back from the first debate.


 

Electronic Theft Being Served Up?

Two companies (ES&S and Diebold) started by two brothers (Bob & Todd Urosevich) with close connections to the Republican Party, will count over 80% of all votes in America using both touchscreens and ballot scanners.





(Click here and on image for Scoop stories)



GEMS Central Tabulators: STUNNING Back Door Allows Vote Tallies To Be Changed In Seconds At County Level (And Via Modem?). Why does such an option even exist?

While Bev Harris' BlackBoxVoting.org is being reconstructed, other links to Bev's article are: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.




Three hours missing from King County [WA] audit log:
OK folks. We now have what everyone keeps saying no one can come up with. We now have evidence that certainly looks like altering a computerized voting system during a real election, and it happened just six weeks ago. . . .
BlackBoxVoting.org



 

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

2004 Election Theft Followup

BBC Newsnight - Greg Palast's latest video report:

Are Republicans planning to challenge Democratic precinct voters to disrupt, slow down and discourage voting?

Update 10-31: Democracy Now! report and interview with Palast: Secret Document Suggests GOP Preparing to Challenge Black Vote in Florida



Democracy Now! A/V reports:

Making Votes Count: Is a Theft of the 2004 Election Already Underway?

We speak with New York Times editorial writer Adam Cohen about voter suppression and fraud in the 2004 election. From U.S. soldiers being told to use non-secret ballots to the Pentagon counting the votes of the military and U.S. citizens living abroad. From partisan secretaries of state overseeing the election to Homeland Security preventing new U.S. citizens from registering and much more. [includes rush transcript]

Suppression, Fraud and Breakdown: Voting Problems Emerge in States Across the Country

Voters in states across the country have already begun to vote as millions more prepare to head to the polls next week to vote in the 2004 presidential election. We take a look at voter suppression and fraud with a lawyer with the Voting Rights Project, focusing on voter protection, a journalist with the London Independent and an international monitor who was part of a team that has prepared a Pre-Election report. [includes rush transcript]



 

Friday, October 22, 2004

Election Theft 2004 in Progress - AGAIN !

How Much is Going On All Over the Country That We Haven't Heard About?

Election chief warns of absentee scam

St. Petersburg Times

Political operatives (you guess which party) have been knocking on doors of absentee voters in Florida, misleading the voters into believing they are election officials, and soliciting their absentee ballots (even if not yet finished). The collections have been occurring in neighborhoods full of low-income, minority and elderly residents. Such neighborhoods typically vote strongly Democratic.




Republican Group Accused of Voter Fraud
In several battleground states across the country, a consulting firm funded by the Republican National Committee (news - web sites) has been accused of deceiving would-be voters and destroying Democratic voter registration cards.

Arizona-based Sproul & Associates is under investigation in Oregon and Nevada over claims that canvassers hired by the company were instructed to register only Republicans and to get rid of registration forms completed by Democrats. . . .

Substitute teacher Adam Banse wanted a summer job with flexible hours, so he signed up to knock on doors in suburban Minneapolis and register people to vote.

He quit after two hours. "They said if you bring back a bunch of Democratic cards, you'll be fired," . . .

Sproul declined to name the states in which his company conducted registration drives. His political consulting firm was founded last year and has received nearly $500,000 from the RNC since July, according to federal election records.

Former canvassers such as Banse have come forward in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Oregon in the past two weeks alleging they were told to register only Republicans and to "walk away" from people who said they intended to vote for Democrat John Kerry (news - web sites).

Some said Democratic registration forms had been thrown out or ripped up. . . .

Eric Russell of Las Vegas told The Associated Press that he watched a Sproul supervisor tear up eight to 10 registration forms completed by Democrats and managed to grab some of the shredded documents as evidence. State officials are investigating his claim. . . .

In West Virginia, Lisa Bragg said she refused a sorely needed $9-an-hour job to register voters after attending an orientation session conducted by Sproul employees.

Like Banse in Minnesota, she said canvassers were discouraged from registering Democrats and were told to misrepresent themselves as poll takers.

Bragg, who filed a complaint earlier this week with the West Virginia secretary of state's office, said Friday that canvassers were given a script that read at the bottom, "Our goal is to register Republicans." . . .

In Pennsylvania, Democrats in the state House of Representatives have asked the attorney general to investigate complaints from former Sproul canvassers who said they had been instructed to not register Democrats. About 40 to 50 also complained they had not been promptly paid. . . .
Yahoo! News


See also my post below entitled "Millions Blocked from Voting in US Election."



 

Monday, October 18, 2004

Feeling a Little Drafty?


U.S. Has Contingency Plans for a Draft of Medical Workers -- New York Times 10-19-04

Selective Service eyes women's draft - The proposal would also require registration of critical skills -- Seattle PI 5-04-04

Update 10-30-04:
Potomac Watch: Administration's own actions fuel rumors of draft -- Seattle PI


 

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Iowa Gov. Vilsack blames Bush for flu vaccine shortage

TheIowaChannel.com

Gov. Tom Vilsack said the Bush administration should be held responsible for a vaccine shortage (read complete story) that could result in substantially more deaths from the flu.

Speaking in a conference call Saturday sponsored by Sen. John Kerry's campaign, Vilsack said the vaccine shortage will likely increase significantly the number of illnesses and deaths this year.

He said the vaccine shortage is "a senior citizen nightmare."

Iowa has the nation's largest population of citizens 85 and older, and has more than 1,000 flu deaths each year.

Vilsack said the Bush administration ignored a warning about vaccine supplies in a 2001 report from the General Accounting Office.

He said Bush failed to act again in 2003 when his administration received specific information about contamination problems at the British vaccine plant that was closed down.
. . .


 

Bush governs not by facts, but by his "gut", by "instinct" !

Without a Doubt, by Ron Suskind

George Bush's "instincts" may be great with regard to his own political maneuvering for power, but certainly his disastrous record of domestic and foreign policy shouts out to the contrary.


Ron Suskind's article offers a shocking look at the man whose finger is on the trigger. (Read the whole New York Times article)


Bruce Bartlett, a domestic policy adviser to Ronald Reagan and a treasury official for the first President Bush, told me recently that ''if Bush wins, there will be a civil war in the Republican Party starting on Nov. 3.'' The nature of that conflict, as Bartlett sees it? Essentially, the same as the one raging across much of the world: a battle between modernists and fundamentalists, pragmatists and true believers, reason and religion.

''Just in the past few months,'' Bartlett said, ''I think a light has gone off for people who've spent time up close to Bush: that this instinct he's always talking about is this sort of weird, Messianic idea of what he thinks God has told him to do.''Bartlett, a 53-year-old columnist and self-described libertarian Republican who has lately been a champion for traditional Republicans concerned about Bush's governance, went on to say: ''This is why George W. Bush is so clear-eyed about Al Qaeda and the Islamic fundamentalist enemy. He believes you have to kill them all. They can't be persuaded, that they're extremists, driven by a dark vision. He understands them, because he's just like them. . . .


''This is why he dispenses with people who confront him with inconvenient facts,'' Bartlett went on to say. ''He truly believes he's on a mission from God. Absolute faith like that overwhelms a need for analysis. The whole thing about faith is to believe things for which there is no empirical evidence.'' Bartlett paused, then said, ''But you can't run the world on faith.'' . . .

'''Mr. President,' I [Sen. Joe Biden] finally said, 'How can you be so sure when you know you don't know the facts?'''

Biden said that Bush stood up and put his hand on the senator's shoulder. ''My instincts,'' he said. ''My instincts.''

Biden paused and shook his head, recalling it all as the room grew quiet. ''I said, 'Mr. President, your instincts aren't good enough!''' . . .

Paul O'Neill, Christine Todd Whitman and Colin Powell to generals fighting in Iraq -- have been told for years when they requested explanations for many of the president's decisions, policies that often seemed to collide with accepted facts. The president would say that he relied on his ''gut'' or his ''instinct'' to guide the ship of state, and then he ''prayed over it.''
. . .

Once he makes a decision -- often swiftly, based on a creed or moral position -- he expects complete faith in its rightness.

The disdainful smirks and grimaces that many viewers were surprised to see in the first presidential debate are familiar expressions to those in the administration or in Congress who have simply asked the president to explain his positions. Since 9/11, those requests have grown scarce; Bush's intolerance of doubters has, if anything, increased, and few dare to question him now. . . .

This is one key feature of the faith-based presidency: open dialogue, based on facts, is not seen as something of inherent value. It may, in fact, create doubt, which undercuts faith . It could result in a loss of confidence in the decision-maker and, just as important, by the decision-maker. Nothing could be more vital . . . .

A cluster of particularly vivid qualities was shaping George W. Bush's White House through the summer of 2001: a disdain for contemplation or deliberation, an embrace of decisiveness, a retreat from empiricism, a sometimes bullying impatience with doubters and even friendly questioners. Already Bush was saying, Have faith in me and my decisions, and you'll be rewarded. All through the White House, people were channeling the boss. He didn't second-guess himself; why should they? . . .

''Where people often get lost is on this very point,'' he said after a moment of thought. ''Real faith, you see, leads us to deeper reflection and not -- not ever -- to the thing we as humans so very much want.''

And what is that?

''Easy certainty.''


 

Saturday, October 16, 2004

New York Times endorses John Kerry for President

New York Times

Read an excellent review of George Bush's overall abuse of the national trust in the New York Times' ringing endorsement of John Kerry for president.


Each paragraph is heavy with reason to make George W. Bush a one-term miscarriage of justice. A must-read.


Other Links:

Editor & Publisher: Daily Endorsement Tally: Kerry Picks up 30 Papers, Widens Lead

Democratic Underground: Master Newspaper Endorsement List


 

Friday, October 15, 2004

Blair warned a year before that Iraq regime change would be illegal

Now it's out. Blair knew all along that invading Iraq to take out Saddam would be illegal and was advised he needed to invent a legal reason.

Cape Times

London: Secret government documents show that Tony Blair was warned by his own advisers a year before going to war that there was no growing threat from Saddam Hussein and that invading Iraq would be illegal.

Confidential papers, including a secret memo from Jack Straw to the prime minister, say that Iraq had not "stepped up" its weapons programmes and that invading Iraq would be "legally very difficult".

They advised that the threat from Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programme should be emphasised to help make the legal case for war even though intelligence showed "the pace of Saddam Hussein's WMD programme" had not speeded up. . . .

"A legal justification for invasion would be needed. Subject to Law Officers' advice, none currently exists," says a paper marked Secret UK Eyes Only, prepared by Cabinet Office experts on March 8. "This makes moving quickly to invade legally very difficult." . . .

The secret papers also show that law officers warned a year before Britain went to war that it was up to the UN Security Council to assess whether Saddam Hussein had breached UN resolutions and that this was not a judgment that could be made by an individual state such as Britain or the US.

But the prime minister was also warned repeatedly that regime change would be illegal under international law and that, a year before the Iraq war, there were no legal grounds for invading Iraq at all. . . .


 

Platoon risks imprisonment rather than go on "suicide mission"

Fighting the war in Iraq on the cheap, that is, except for the thousands of expensive hired mercenaries, the inflated prices paid to Halliburton and other Bush cronies, and the billions of dollars that have simply slipped through the cracks without a trace, one of the cheapest of Bush's assets appears to be the lives of our kids serving in his military.

The Clarion-Ledger

A 17-member Army Reserve platoon with troops from Jackson[,Mississippi] and around the Southeast deployed to Iraq is under arrest for refusing a "suicide mission" to deliver fuel, the troops' relatives said Thursday.

The soldiers refused an order on Wednesday to go to Taji, Iraq — north of Baghdad — because their vehicles were considered "deadlined" or extremely unsafe
, said Patricia McCook of Jackson, wife of Sgt. Larry O. McCook. ...

The platoon could be charged with the willful disobeying of orders, punishable by dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of pay and up to five years confinement, said military law expert Mark Stevens, an associate professor of justice studies at Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount, N.C. ...

"President Bush takes the position that the troops are well-armed, but if this situation is true, it calls into question how honest he has been with the country," [U.S. Rep. Bennie] Thompson said.

The 343rd is a supply unit whose general mission is to deliver fuel and water. The unit includes three women and 14 men and those with ranking up to sergeant first class.

"I got a call from an officer in another unit early (Thursday) morning who told me that my husband and his platoon had been arrested on a bogus charge because they refused to go on a suicide mission," said Jackie Butler of Jackson, wife of Sgt. Michael Butler, a 24-year reservist. "When my husband refuses to follow an order, it has to be something major." ...

The platoon is normally escorted by armed Humvees and helicopters, but did not have that support Wednesday, McClenny told her mother.

The convoy trucks the platoon was driving had experienced problems in the past and were not being properly maintained, Hill said her daughter told her.

The situation mirrors other tales of troops being sent on missions without proper equipment.

Aviation regiments have complained of being forced to fly dangerous missions over Iraq with outdated night-vision goggles and old missile-avoidance systems. Stories of troops' families purchasing body armor because the military didn't provide them with adequate equipment have been included in recent presidential debates. ...

"He told me that three of the vehicles they were to use were deadlines ... not safe to go in a hotbed like that," Patricia McCook said.

Hill said the trucks her daughter's unit was driving could not top 40 mph.

"They knew there was a 99 percent chance they were going to get ambushed or fired at," Hill said her daughter told her. "They would have had no way to fight back." ...

Update 10-16-04

Soldiers "detained", not "arrested". Army spokesman says preliminary findings show the soldiers raised "valid concerns."


Update 10-17-04

Soldiers Saw Refusing Order as Their Last Stand



 

Excellent 47-minute Democracy Now! video about Bush's National Guard dereliction

Democracy Now!

As controversy swirls around the authenticity of documents used by 60 Minutes last week, we play an excerpt of a new documentary 'Bush Family Fortunes' by investigative reporter Greg Palast that examines Bush's military duty and includes a rare interview with former Texas Air National Guardsman Lt. Col. Bill Burkett. [includes rush transcript] ...


Watch complete documentary at Information Clearing House or get your own DVD at GregPalast.com

Previously posted 9-18-04


Update 10-16-04:

CBS and Dan Rather suffered humiliation over the documents used in their reporting that Bush was viewed as a problem in the Guard and had refused to follow an order to get a physical. Marian Carr Knox (the former secretary of Bush's National Guard commander, Lt. Col. Jerry Killian), who examined the document copies, attested that she had not typed those particular memos, but that their content nevertheless was in fact true.

Lt. Col. Bill Burkett was the source of the documents to CBS and later admitted he had lied to CBS about how he had come to possess them. Because of that lie, Burkett's general credibility has been cast in suspicion and therefore arises again regarding his testimony to Greg Palast. However, just as the truth of the CBS memos was attested to by Marian Carr Knox, the evidence is also clear that a large amount of George Bush's National Guard records are in fact missing from the files, including everything in one particular large critical period of time. In both cases, the bottom line facts do indeed match the charges, even though the source of the charges has been drawn into question.

What may be happening here is allowing the truth of the matter to enter into the public domain in such a manner as to be able to deny its credibility by discrediting the source. This is a strategy known as "damaged packaging" and has been used sucessfully before by Karl Rove against Jim Hatfield, author of unpublished Fortunate Son in 2000.

We may never really know the details of Col. Burkett's involvement in this matter, whether he is in fact a GOP plant — a sleeper cell of one put in place long ago for just such a mission — or whether he is just a victim in a scheme to discredit the accurate information he delivered.



 

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Sinclair Broadcast Group displaying blatantly partisan and divisive behavior

On October 22, just days before the November 2 election, Sinclair Broadcast Group, the nation's largest owner of local TV stations and which reaches 25% of American homes, has ordered its 62 TV stations to preempt its regular prime time programming to air a 90-minute commercial-free politically partisan attack against presidential contender John Kerry for his early activist work against the Vietnam War. The company has no stated plans to air a pro-Kerry program to balance the Kerry bash. In what therefore is probably an illegal corporate political contribution to the Bush campaign, Sinclair intends to try to skirt campaign contribution laws by claiming the documentary entitled "Stolen Honor" is actually news and therefore exempt from campaign regulations.

Secretary of State Colin Powell's son Michael, who heads the FCC, pleads that his hands are tied because there is no precedent in law that would enable him to prevent the broadcast.

Sinclair's executives are more exclusively Republican in their contributions than any other radio and TV broadcasters, giving 97 percent of their more than $67,000 in political contributions to GOP candidates in 2004.

As further evidence of Sinclair's political leanings, after 9/11, the company required their affiliates to express complete allegiance to the Bush Administration on the air.

[MediaChannel.org]
On April 30 Sinclair refused to allow the showing of ABC's Nightline, wherein each of America's war dead was named. Sinclair claimed at the time that the naming of the dead was too political and would undermine the President's war effort. When the program aired, ratings for Nightline for the stations that did carry it jumped because people in fact wanted to see such a tribute to our fallen soldiers.

Sinclair is going out on a limb in broadcasting "Stolen Honor" by blatantly giving President Bush the equivalent of a huge campaign contribution. SBGI, Sinclair's stock has been dropping for months and is still seeking a bottom. Sinclair hopes that the Bush FCC will eventually allow them to control two stations in each city instead of just one.

Internet activists, outraged that such an obviously partisan and unbalanced 90-minute Bush advertisement is being aired just days before the election, are lodging their complaints at every level, urging investment managers to consider divestment, and organizing local protests against Sinclair stations and boycotts against Sinclair advertisers.


Carlton A. Sherwood, writer/producer of the film, formerly
worked as Special Media Advisor to the Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan Administration and Broadcast Communications Director for Homeland Security chief Gov. Tom Ridge. The Bush administration has selected Sherwood to create and manage a new federal website aimed at first responders (police officers, firefighters, etc.).
A relatively early example of Sherwood criticizing Kerry on this issue is a Fox News article from March 2004. In it, Sherwood is quoted as saying: "He knew as an officer that those were lies. It never happened... He was principally responsible for cementing the image of Vietnam veterans as drugged-out psychopaths who were totally unrestrained and who were a murderous hoard." [13]

[Disinfopedia]
It seems not to matter to Mr. Sherwood that the so-called lies he says Kerry told have actually been well substantiated as historical fact in the years since his testimony before U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1971.

Sherwood also worked for the Washington Times, owned by Unification Church founder Rev. Sun Myung Moon. His purported investigation of Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church, Inquisition: The Persecution and Prosecution of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, offers us a preview of the manner in which Sherwood's purported independent journalism is finally rendered.
In a story on this book, the PBS television series Frontline obtained a copy of a letter addressed to Moon. The letter was written by James Gavin, a Moon aide. Gavin tells Moon he reviewed the "overall tone and factual contents" of Inquisition before publication and suggested revisions. Gavin adds that the author "Mr. Sherwood has assured me that all this will be done when the manuscript is sent to the publisher." Gavin concludes by telling Moon, "When all of our suggestions have been incorporated, the book will be complete and in my opinion will make a significant impact.... In addition to silencing our critics now, the book should be invaluable in persuading others of our legitimacy for many years to come."[1]
View the October 13 Democracy Now! report for coverage of the issue.

John Kerry Then: Hear Kerry's Historic 1971 Testimony Against the Vietnam War
(Democracy Now!)

Other links include:

Sinclair's Partisan Ploy Cries Out for Equal Time (FAIR)

Anti-Kerry film ignites new row (BBC quick overview article)

Sinclair Plays Fast and Loose with the News
Sinclair Fiddles While the FCC Sleeps

Media control: Sinclair Broadcast Group
Disinfopedia: Media control: Stolen_Honor:_Wounds_That_Never_Heal

The official movie website


 

Friday, October 01, 2004

Bush responsible for hundreds of thousands of mother/child deaths and millions of unwanted pregnancies worldwide

Bush Withholds Money from U.N. Family Planning Fund for 3rd Year in a Row

Reuters

Scapegoating China, the Bush administration throws sop to his Christian fundamentalist base by withholding funds from UNFPA, thus assuring worldwide during fiscal years 2002-2004:

  • 12,600 maternal deaths

  • 205,200 infant deaths

  • 2,116,800 abortions

  • 5,400,000 unwanted pregnancies
This appears to be what Bush and his regressive fundamentalist base call "family values". It is totally unconscionable and derives from a mindset that is dogmatic, near-sighted, wholly uncompassionate, and disengaged from reality in this world. It is a horrible repeat of George Walker Bush's rapacious devastation of everything he touches.

Read the following articles to get up to speed on this tragic abuse of presidential power:

Oct 1, 2004 - Reuters
Mar 31, 2002 - Seattle PI
Jul 17, 2004 - Boston Globe
Jan 14, 2001 - PlanetWire



 

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Bush's hometown paper endorses Kerry

Kerry Will Restore American Dignity

2004 Iconoclast Presidential Endorsement

Few Americans would have voted for George W. Bush four years ago if he had promised that, as President, he would:

  • Empty the Social Security trust fund by $507 billion to help offset fiscal irresponsibility and at the same time slash Social Security benefits.

  • Cut Medicare by 17 percent and reduce veterans' benefits and military pay.

  • Eliminate overtime pay for millions of Americans and raise oil prices by 50 percent.

  • Give tax cuts to businesses that sent American jobs overseas, and, in fact, by policy encourage their departure.

  • Give away billions of tax dollars in government contracts without competitive bids.

  • Involve this country in a deadly and highly questionable war, and

  • Take a budget surplus and turn it into the worst deficit in the history of the United States, creating a debt in just four years that will take generations to repay.
These were elements of a hidden agenda that surfaced only after he took office.

The publishers of The Iconoclast endorsed Bush four years ago, based on the things he promised, not on this smoke-screened agenda.

Today, we are endorsing his opponent, John Kerry, based not only on the things that Bush has delivered, but also on the vision of a return to normality that Kerry says our country needs.

<edit>

In those dark hours after the World Trade Center attacks, Americans rallied together with a new sense of patriotism. We were ready to follow Bush's lead through any travail.

He let us down.

When he finally emerged from his hide-outs on remote military bases well after the first crucial hours following the attack, he gave sound-bytes instead of solutions.

<edit>

Bush said Iraq had weapons of mass destruction trained on America. We believed him, just as we believed it when he reported that Iraq was the heart of terrorism. We trusted him.

The Iconoclast, the President's hometown newspaper, took Bush on his word and editorialized in favor of the invasion. The newspaper's publisher promoted Bush and the invasion of Iraq to Londoners in a BBC interview during the time that the administration was wooing the support of Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Again, he let us down.

Once and for all, George Bush was President of the United States on that day. No one else. He had been President nine months, he had been officially warned of just such an attack a full month before it happened. As President, ultimately he and only he was responsible for our failure to avert those attacks.

We should expect that a sitting President would vacation less, if at all, and instead tend to the business of running the country, especially if he is, as he likes to boast, a "wartime president." America is in service 365 days a year. We don't need a part-time President who does not show up for duty as Commander-In-Chief until he is forced to, and who is in a constant state of blameless denial when things don't get done.

<edit>

Kerry's four-point plan for Iraq is realistic, wise, strong, and correct. With the help from our European and Middle Eastern allies, his plan is to train Iraqi security forces, involve Iraqis in their rebuilding and constitution-writing processes, forgive Iraq's multi-billion dollar debts, and convene a regional conference with Iraq's neighbors in order to secure a pledge of respect for Iraq's borders and non-interference in Iraq's internal affairs.

<edit>

The re-election of George W. Bush would be a mandate to continue on our present course of chaos. We cannot afford to double the debt that we already have. We need to be moving in the opposite direction.

John Kerry has 30 years of experience looking out for the American people and can navigate our country back to prosperity and re-instill in America the dignity she so craves and deserves. He has served us well as a highly decorated Vietnam veteran and has had a successful career as a district attorney, lieutenant governor, and senator.

Kerry has a positive vision for America, plus the proven intelligence, good sense, and guts to make it happen.

That's why The Iconoclast urges Texans not to rate the candidate by his hometown or even his political party, but instead by where he intends to take the country.

The Iconoclast wholeheartedly endorses John Kerry.

Daily Kos - Original, unedited Iconoclast article


 

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Bush family history shows a dark past unseen by most

Seeing the big picture. Getting to know the players.

Few would argue that trust, like democracy, is earned and not inherited. So how is it that we've missed the lessons of four generations of Bush family history?

As Kevin Phillips recounts in "American Dynasty," the Bush family presents a record of war profiteers who use public office to gain wealth and advantage. Along the way, Bush family business cronies receive political access and legitimacy.

One of the most venal characters is Prescott Bush, the president's grandfather. ...

For 60 years, the full record of Prescott Bush's complicity in the Nazi war machine has been ignored or denied by participants and the U.S. media.

But no more. Documents relating to the seizures were recently uncovered in the National Archives and the Library of Congress. Confirmed by Dutch government sources, they show that Bush shipped tons of strategic resources to the Third Reich as Hitler prepared to invade Poland.

Despite this history, the news media continues to present a selective picture of the Bush family and its business connections. People who tried to show the warts were shouted down; in 2000, the publisher of "Fortunate Son," a George Bush biography, was forced to recall and burn its inventory.

After launching a bloody occupation of Iraq, perhaps it's time Americans connect the dots and see the big picture. ...

In private action and public policy, Bush family history reveals a pattern of war profiteering spanning four generations. It's a legacy of deceit and death. For the naïve and uninformed, the facts may be a slap in the face. For those who look closely, the sign is as clear as blood on snow.

Then again, perhaps the pattern is lost in the noise. According to Bob Woodward's "Bush At War," the president attended a New York Yankees game not long after the 9/11 attacks. Wearing a New York City fireman's jacket, Bush threw out the first pitch and the crowd roared its approval. From a sky box above the stadium, Karl Rove, Bush's political adviser, likened the roar of the crowd to 'a Nazi rally.'"
I wonder how world history will compare grandfather and grandson a century from now. Will collusion with the Third Reich really be regarded as any more venal than the crimes George W. is now perpetrating on this nation and world, and intends to advance yet further in a 2nd term?

Read the whole 9-12-04 article at The Fairbanks News-Miner.

Also read this Guardian Unlimited 9-25-04 article on the subject.


 

Friday, September 24, 2004

Millions Blocked from Voting in US Election

Millions of U.S. citizens, including a disproportionate number of black voters, will be blocked from voting in the Nov. 2 presidential election because of legal barriers, faulty procedures or dirty tricks, according to civil rights and legal experts.

The largest category of those legally disenfranchised consists of almost 5 million former felons who have served prison sentences and been released.

In total, 13 percent of all black men are barred from voting due to a felony conviction, according to the Commission on Civil Rights. Polls consistently find that black Americans overwhelmingly vote for Democrats.

"This has a huge effect on elections but also on black communities which see their political clout diluted. No one has yet explained to me how letting ex-felons who have served their sentences into polling booths hurts anyone," said Jessie Allen of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University. ...

Wired News

In 2000 five right wing Supreme Court justices selected George W. Bush as president by stopping the Florida vote count when Bush had 512 votes over Gore. For Jeb Bush, Katharine Harris, Clayton Roberts and the Republican Party it was a job well done, but for our democracy and the clear majority of potential voters, it was the theft of the presidency and an indecent outrage against the founding principles of this republic.

Our risk averse, government beholden US media corporations eagerly stepped up to pay homage to the interloper as president and subsequently failed in their duty to fairly pursue and report on the injustices that had bend one in our banana republic election at the hands of GOP operatives.

But unlike two other international elections that were stolen that year, because our media corporations supported the coup by failing to pursue and report it, there were no mass uprisings of outraged citizens marching up to the White House demanding justice, our election remained stolen and by far the worst presidency of 100 years was given a free pass to plunder our treasury, eviscerate our economy, and shred our Constitution. And what the GOP has in mind for this nation in another four years of power may very well make today seem like the good old days.

Greg Palast, American investigative journalist and film producer for the BBC and The Guardian, and author of best-selling The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, has done much to reveal this scandalous coup d'etat but generally stands alone crying in the US media wilderness. It was Palast who reported on BBC about the illegal "felons list" ordered by Jeb Bush, Katharine Harris, and Clayton Roberts as a Democratic hit list to prevent more than 50,000 eligible Florida Democratic voters access to the polls, and further that Katharine Harris prevented the counting of another 20,000 Democratic votes.

His findings were confirmed by the Commission on Civil Rights, as described and further elaborated upon by Alan Elsner, which states that nationally, the "largest category of those legally disenfranchised consists of almost 5 million former felons who have served prison sentences and been released" and that polls "consistently find that black Americans overwhelmingly vote for Democrats." That being the case, one can readily appreciate why any GOP dominated state legislature would be more than a little reluctant to allow ex-felons the vote and thereby give up their valuable felons list, accurate or not. Fourteen states still deny ex-felons the right to vote.

Add this to the fact that nationwide, predominantly black precincts are those that get the oldest, most often malfunctioning voting equipment. Any equipment delays or breakdowns in these precincts — which occur at a higher rate than in precincts with better equipment — therefore deprive more Democratic voters from casting their ballots. It is estimated that the votes lost in this manner exceeds 1,000,000.

Following are some Greg Palast links. Find out what the elite media corporations are unwilling to let you know.

GregPalast.com (links to Palast's writings and more of his A/V's)
BBC TV: Theft of the Presidency - What Really Happened in Florida?
Silence of the Media Lambs (audio)
The Bush Family Fortunes (complete video)
Jim Crow Revived in Cyberspace 05-13-03 (article)
Update 10-28-04: Palast's BBC 10-26-04 report on a Florida Republican "caging list" and other dirty (illegal) tricks (audio)

Another writer's 2000 election theft summary: Stolen Election Deja Vu, Steve B. Cobble, for Nov3.us


 

Saturday, September 18, 2004

Bush and Blair: Secrets and Lies

If Blair knew it, you can bet Bush and his boys knew it. The question is, "Then why?"

Part of that answer is documented at my blog Krineina - Developing the Big Picture.

The Sunday Herald (Glasgow)

The rotting albatross that is Iraq still hangs around Blair’s neck, and, after the revelations of secret government papers laying out the dangers of joining Bush’s war, its stench has become impossible for anyone to ignore but for the man closest to it – the Prime Minister

BLAIR’S secrets are out, and this is what he knew a full year before the invasion of Iraq: the war was illegal, it would turn into a quagmire that could last for generations and it was more than likely that, once Saddam was overthrown, a new Iraqi government, even a democratic one, would start developing weapons of mass destruction.

These warnings were contained in a series of top-secret documents that Blair read and digested long before the invasion. It’s little wonder that Menzies Campbell, the Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesman, says these revelations are 'the crown jewels'.

The documents show that, despite the reservations of his own foreign secretary and the Cabinet Office Overseas and Defence Secretariat, Blair was swept along by George W Bush into a war that the British people did not want. His motive? The preservation of the transatlantic special relationship. America, under Bush, was going to take out Saddam no matter what happened – and the White House clearly expected its loyal ally the UK to follow in step behind the US. ...
Also watch Eric Blumrich's animation Tony B£air's "Values", available at Bushflash.


 

Suckers for Jesus

This Crisis Papers article identifies the main components of the present GOP as libertarians, free market absolutists, greedy plutocrats, and Christian fundamentalists and asks the question, "Why, then, do religious fundamentalists follow, and vote for, wealthy and powerful individuals who openly violate the basic moral teachings of their 'Lord and Savior'?"

The writer concludes: "The Fundamentalist Christians have been 'had' – suckered – by the libertarians and oligarchs. Thus the fundamentalists have worked diligently and faithfully toward their own disadvantage and undoing."

Read the whole article for yourself.


 

Friday, September 17, 2004

Reconstructing Bush’s Military Record: Examination of Official Docs Released by White House Question Bush's Duty

Democracy Now!

We take a close look at President Bush's record in the National Guard with Eric Boehlert. He is the senior writer at Salon.com and has written extensively about Bush's military service - closely examining the more than 400 pages of military documents released by the White House last February. [includes rush transcript]

* Eric Boehlert, senior writer at Salon.com. He has written extensively about Bush's military service in the National Guard. ...


 

Blogger Who Initially Faulted CBS Documents Is Conservative Activist (Freeper)

Evidence surfacing that CBS docs were a GOP plant to draw media attention away form Bush's dismal record on everything he has touched.

LA Times

It was the first public allegation that CBS News used forged memos in its report questioning President Bush's National Guard service — a highly technical explanation posted within hours of airtime citing proportional spacing and font styles.

But it did not come from an expert in typography or typewriter history as some first thought. Instead, it was the work of Harry W. MacDougald, an Atlanta lawyer with strong ties to conservative Republican causes who helped draft the petition urging the Arkansas Supreme Court to disbar President Clinton after the Monica Lewinsky scandal, the Times has found.

The identity of "Buckhead," a blogger known previously only by his screen name on the site freerepublic.com and lifted to folk hero status in the conservative blogosphere since last week's posting, is likely to fuel speculation among Democrats that the efforts to discredit the CBS memos were engineered by Republicans eager to undermine reports that Bush received preferential treatment in the National Guard more than 30 years ago. ...

MacDougald, 46, confirmed that he is Buckhead, but declined to answer questions about his political background or how he knew so much about the CBS documents so fast. ...

MacDougald had taken pains to remain in the shadows ...

The Sept. 8 late-night posting — written less than four hours after the CBS report was aired — resulted in a flurry of sympathetic testimonials from fellow bloggers, spreading within hours to other sites. The next day, major newspapers such as The Times and the Washington Post began consulting forensic experts and reporting stories that raised similar questions.

Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe even speculated openly to reporters that the whole thing could have been orchestrated by White House political advisor Karl Rove. ...

While bloggers and some conservative activists hailed Buckhead as a hero in their longtime efforts to paint the mainstream media as politically biased, some Democrats and even some conservative bloggers have marveled at Buckhead's detailed knowledge of the memos and wondered whether that suggested a White House conspiracy.


 

Secretary General Finally Uses the I-Word

The word is getting around, but American Elite Media will likely see to it that Americans are the last to know — Bush's Iraq war is ILLEGAL and always has been ILLEGAL.

The use of a single word in diplomacy can often mark a significant moment and the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's use of the word 'illegal' about the war in Iraq is one such moment. He has carefully avoided the word before. ...

BBC News


 

Top brass says Iraq war far graver than Vietnam


After killing tens of thousands in Iraq, Bush is still bragging about how he is winning that illegal war, but "most senior US military officers now believe the war on Iraq has turned into a disaster on an unprecedented scale."

The Guardian

... according to the US military's leading strategists and prominent retired generals, Bush's war is already lost. Retired general William Odom, former head of the National Security Agency, told me: "Bush hasn't found the WMD. Al-Qaida, it's worse, he's lost on that front. That he's going to achieve a democracy there? That goal is lost, too. It's lost." He adds: "Right now, the course we're on, we're achieving Bin Laden's ends."

Retired general Joseph Hoare, the former marine commandant and head of US Central Command, told me: "The idea that this is going to go the way these guys planned is ludicrous. There are no good options. We're conducting a campaign as though it were being conducted in Iowa, no sense of the realities on the ground. It's so unrealistic for anyone who knows that part of the world. The priorities are just all wrong."

Jeffrey Record, professor of strategy at the Air War College, said: "I see no ray of light on the horizon at all. The worst case has become true. There's no analogy whatsoever between the situation in Iraq and the advantages we had after the second world war in Germany and Japan."

W Andrew Terrill, professor at the Army War College's strategic studies institute - and the top expert on Iraq there - said: "I don't think that you can kill the insurgency". According to Terrill, the anti-US insurgency ... is expanding and becoming more capable as a consequence of US policy. ...

"If you are a Muslim and the community is under occupation by a non-Islamic power it becomes a religious requirement to resist that occupation," Terrill explained. "Most Iraqis consider us occupiers, not liberators." ...

"I see no exit," said Record. "We've been down that road before. It's called Vietnamisation. The idea that we're going to have an Iraqi force trained to defeat an enemy we can't defeat stretches the imagination. They will be tainted by their very association with the foreign occupier. In fact, we had more time and money in state building in Vietnam than in Iraq."

General Odom said: "This is far graver than Vietnam. There wasn't as much at stake strategically, though in both cases we mindlessly went ahead with the war that was not constructive for US aims. But now we're in a region far more volatile, and we're in much worse shape with our allies." ...

General Odom remarked that the tension between the Bush administration and the senior military officers over Iraqi was worse than any he has ever seen with any previous government, including Vietnam. "I've never seen it so bad between the office of the secretary of defence and the military. There's a significant majority believing this is a disaster. The two parties whose interests have been advanced have been the Iranians and al-Qaida. Bin Laden could argue with some cogency that our going into Iraq was the equivalent of the Germans in Stalingrad. They defeated themselves by pouring more in there. Tragic."

· Sidney Blumenthal, a former senior adviser to President Clinton, is Washington bureau chief of salon.com


 

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Still Unreported: The Pay-off in Bush Air Guard Fix

In 1968, former Congressman George Herbert Walker Bush of Texas, fresh from voting to send other men’s sons to Vietnam, enlisted his own son in a very special affirmative action program, the ‘champagne’ unit of the Texas Air National Guard. There, Top Gun fighter pilot George Dubya was assigned the dangerous job of protecting Houston from Vietcong air attack.

This week, former Lt. Governor Ben Barnes of Texas 'fessed up to pulling the strings to keep Little George out of the jungle. "I got a young man named George W. Bush into the Texas Air Guard - and I'm ashamed."

THE $23 MILLION PAY-BACK

That’s far from the end of the story. In 1994, George W. Bush was elected governor of Texas by a whisker. By that time, Barnes had left office to become a big time corporate lobbyist. To an influence peddler like Barnes, having damning information on a sitting governor is worth its weight in gold – or, more precisely, there’s a value in keeping the info secret.

Barnes appears to have made lucrative use of his knowledge of our President’s slithering out of the draft as a lever to protect a multi-billion dollar contract for a client. That's the information in a confidential letter buried deep in the files of the US Justice Department that fell into my hands at BBC television.

Here's what happened. ..."
Go to Greg Palast's website to read the details of this provocative story.


 

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Hijacking Catastrophe


"Hijacking Catastrophe is powerful, understated, straightforward and educational. In a single meticulously organized hour of evidence and analysis, viewers are treated to a thoughtful explanation of modern American empire, neo-conservatism as a driving force for the current Bush administration." -- Information Clearing House
Watch full length version or buy your own DVD.

Also watch Democracy Now! interview with director Sut Jhally.


 

Don't mess with the Bushes

David Talbot talks to Kitty Kelley, whose scathing portrait of the Bush family has fired up the Republican camp
Best selling author Kitty Kelley has finally released her withering exposé of the Bush dynasty. Immediately it has become Amazon's #1 selling book.

There is a lot more to it besides Laura's pot dealing at college and W's cocaine snorting at Camp David.

Read this detailed Guardian Unlimited article to see what Ms. Kelley has to say about the real Bush family and their not so admiral methods of keeping the truth hidden.


 

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Bush accuses Kerry's national agenda of costing $2 trillion, then proposes his own costing well in excess of $3 trillion

Another popular Bush propaganda trick: criticize your opponent for something while your own something is substantially worse.

At the RNC Bush criticized Kerry for a national agenda that would cost $2 trillion over ten years, then went on to outline what he implied was a less expensive agenda of his own. Now it turns out that Bush's agenda would cost well in excess of $3 trillion, which makes it well in excess of 50% more costly than Kerry's.

Remember what Grover Norquist, top Bush and GOP party strategist, declared in a National Public Radio "Morning Edition" interview May 25, 2001,
"I don’t want to abolish government. I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub."
Well, folks, Bush is showing us how it's done — spend down the treasury like there's no tomorrow, till you have to privatize or simply chop away programs that are intended for the general good.

Read this Yahoo! News link or the original Washington Post analysis.


 

Monday, September 13, 2004

Bush responsible for thousands more deaths in post 9/11 NYC !  Where is the outrage ?

Immediately after the disaster the White House forced the EPA to declare lower Manhattan air safe to breathe, so the stock exchanges and other business institutions could reopen. They can't blame this premeditated homicidal recklessness on foreign terrorists.

Don't think the Bush team will respect your health in any future attack any better. They've proved their loyalty is to Big Business. Are you Big Business?


9/11 pollution 'could cause more deaths than attack'
By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Editor, The Independent (UK)

12 September 2004

Up to 400,000 New Yorkers breathed in the most toxic polluting cloud ever recorded after the twin towers were brought down three years ago, but no proper effort has been made to find out how their health has been affected, according to an official report.

The US government study provides the latest evidence of a systematic cover-up of the health toll from pollution after the 9/11 disaster, which doctors fear will cause more deaths than the attacks themselves.

The Bush administration suppressed evidence of increasing danger and officially announced that the air around the felled buildings was "safe to breathe". Another report reveals that it has since failed at least a dozen times to correct its assurances, even when it became clear that people were becoming sick.

The official report - sent to Congress last week by the US Government Accountability Office - says that between 250,000 and 400,000 people in lower Manhattan were exposed to the pollution on 11 September 2001. But it shows that the government has yet to make a comprehensive effort to study the effects on their health.

And it reveals that there is no systematic effort to adequately monitor the well-being of those affected, give them physical examinations or provide treatment.

Scientific studies have shown that the cloud of pulverised debris from the skyscrapers was uniquely dangerous. The US government's own figures show that it contained the highest levels of deadly dioxins ever recorded - about 1,500 times normal levels. Unprecedented levels of acids, sulphur, fine particles, heavy metals and other dangerous materials were also measured.

Asbestos was found at 27 times acceptable levels, and scientists found about 400 organic alkanes, phthalates and polyaromatic hydrocarbons - many suspected of causing cancer and other long-term diseases.

The site at Ground Zero went on smouldering, becoming what scientists describe as a "chemical factory", creating new dangerous substances.