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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Breaking: House panel votes to cite Rove for contempt

WASHINGTON (AP) — A House panel Wednesday voted to cite former top White House aide Karl Rove for contempt of Congress as its Senate counterpart publicly pursued possible punishments for an array of alleged past and present Bush administration misdeeds.

Voting along party lines, the House Judiciary Committee said that Rove had broke the law by failing to appear at a July 10 hearing on allegations of White House influence over the Justice Department, including whether Rove encouraged prosecutions against Democrats.

The committee decision is only a recommendation, and it was unclear whether Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., would allow a final vote. Rove has denied any involvement with Justice decisions, and the White House has said Congress has no authority to compel testimony from current and former advisers.

The vote occurred as members of the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on allegations of administration wrongdoing ranging from discriminating against liberals at Justice to ignoring subpoenas and lying to Congress.

Friday, July 25, 2008

TRN'S Staement on Savage (with embellishments)


A few days ago, Talk Radio Netwotk, the company that syndicates Michael Savage, released a statment regarding Savages recet statements on autism.




This is that statement (with comment):






STATEMENT BY TALK RADIO NETWORKON MICHAEL SAVAGE'S AUTISM COMMENTS
There
have been numerous calls in recent days for Michael Savage, who hosts "The
Michael Savage Show" for Talk Radio Network (the "Network"), to be fired or
suspended for his brief 84 seconds of commentary concerning autism during the
July 16th broadcast of the Show.


Already a company that owns 7 talk stations in Mississippi, and Salem's WHK in Cincinatti have already cut the Weiner. As well as Sears, Aflac, Home Depot, Radio Shack and DirectBuy....among others







Promptly after the Network's management learned of the comments in issue,
the Network commenced an investigation into the particulars and the
circumstances of those comments. This investigation began with the Network's
CEO, Mark Masters, personally contacting Dr. Savage to address the concerns and
obtain an explanation of the comments directly from Dr. Savage.

In that conversation, and other subsequent conversations between Mr.
Masters and Dr. Savage, Dr. Savage explained the circumstances and intent of his
statements in considerable detail.




"One more of that, DOCTOR Savage, and you will be fired!!!"










The Network also carefully monitored subsequent broadcasts of the Show, on
Monday, July 21st and Tuesday, July 22nd, which were devoted to the subject of
autism and further explanations by Dr. Savage of his views on the subject.




"....and we'll be listineg to every vowel!"







Dr. Savage has clarified that his July 16th statements concerning autism were
not directed at those who are in fact challenged by this horrible affliction,
but were instead addressing efforts to broaden the concept of autism beyond
those who truly are autistic to a broader "autistic spectrum" of behavioral
symptoms which are also manifested by persons who do not suffer from autism, and
his concern that many children are being misdiagnosed as autistic due to the
subjective nature of autism diagnosis (due to the lack of known biomedical
indicators, such as blood tests, to definitively confirm or deny the actual
existence of autism).




Cue "Tea For Two" and that tap-dancing sound effect, will ya, Bill.....








Dr. Savage has also explained his belief that there have been efforts by
certain professionals and professional organizations to expand diagnoses of
autism more broadly, for various reasons, and his concern that this victimizes
and stigmatizes children who are misdiagnosed as autistic. On multiple other
occasions Dr. Savage has expressed his concerns that other conditions, such as
ADD and ADHD, are overdiagnosed and result in improper medication of young
children, which Dr. Savage regards as abusive.

In the context of his broader concerns, it is clear that Dr. Savage's
comments were intended to suggest his opinion that, in the vast majority of
cases, most children throwing tantrums, or refusing to communicate, are not
autistic. Unfortunately, by condensing his multifaceted concerns into 84 seconds
of commentary, the necessary context for his remarks was not apparent, and the
few words he used to express his concerns were, in this instance, inartfully
phrased.


Ah, but that 84 seconds of audio WAS in context, sir. the man did say NINETY-NINE PERCENT! Don Imus, after his debacle, was contrite and sincerly sorry about what happned, and eventually took his medicine like a man. In the meantime, the Savage WHINER lived up to his name.







As a result, Dr. Savage's comments did facially appear to be directed at
children who suffer from autism, and clearly could be perceived as such. This
has, in turn, caused understandable pain and distress to those who have a child
or family member who is challenged by autism. This was not Dr. Savage's intent,
and, on behalf of the Network and all persons associated with the Network, we
wish to note that our hearts go out to all families who are forced to face the
realities of autism every day of their lives, and to sincerely apologize to
these families for any increase in these burdens resulting from inartful
commentary appearing in the Network's programming.






That's fine, TRN, but where is DOCTOR Savage's apology, we're still waiting.....







While the phrasing of Dr. Savage's remarks was inartful, after the
aforementioned investigation, as well as personal knowledge of Dr. Savage's
strongly held views towards children and those dealing with special challenges,
the Network is satisfied that he did not mean any disrespect to autistic
children or their families but was instead reiterating his longstanding concerns
on public health issues. Indeed, on these points, Mark Masters, the Network's
CEO, notes that:

"I have known Michael Savage for nine years now. Over those nine years,
we have had occasion to disagree on many issues. However, I have always
respected Michael as a man of conviction, and I have noticed throughout our
relationship that he has always been passionate and intense in his opposition to
persons who he perceived to be disrespectful of persons dealing with special
challenges.

I once asked him about his passion in this area, and he noted that it
was because he had a brother who was disabled, but that he did not want to
discuss it. Michael never shared any particulars on this with me until he shared
with his audience on Monday that his brother never spoke during his lifetime,
was institutionalized at 5 or 6 years old, and died in that institution in his
20's.

My observations of Michael's consistent opposition to what he viewed as
abuse or disrespect of persons dealing with special challenges, and of his
interest in children, as well as his 1982 book, Healing Children Naturally, are
completely inconsistent with Michael attacking children who are truly autistic.
In contrast, his belief that misdiagnosing children as autistic will damage
those children who are misdiagnosed and stigmatize them for life, his aversion
to what he sees as improper medication of young children, and subjecting them to
a lifetime of chemical straight jackets, and his recent sharing of his belief
that the medical profession failed to properly care for his brother prior to his
brother's death, do explain his passion in challenging what he sees as improper
efforts by some in the health care industry to brand and treat as autistic
persons who are not."






Then why didn't Savage say this the day after to his listeners??







In this context, for multiple reasons,




Tranaslation: we don't have a replacement.......yet.








the Network does not believe that it is appropriate to take adversarial
action to suspend or terminate Dr. Savage for not phrasing his comments in this
instance more carefully.

First, the Network recognizes, and those who are calling for action
against Dr. Savage should recognize, that live talk radio is unscripted. Hosts
do not read from prompters. Regardless of the abilities of any individual host,
it is impossible to expect that hosts can in all instances avoid any instances
of failure to provide full context and caveats for every statement made in three
hours per day, five days per week, of a live talk program.






We understand that. TRN has nothing to apologize for, Savage does. Where is Savage's apology??????





The Network also believes, as a policy matter, that it is not appropriate to
censor the opinions of its hosts on legitimate issues. Neither the Network nor
its management personnel agree with all positions asserted by all hosts on each
of the Network's shows.




Trust me, I can think of a few TRUTHS you would fire someone for. People have been deleted off the web and air for said truths....







As a policy matter, the Network neither supports nor rejects individual policy
statements asserted by its hosts. It does, however, support the rights of its
hosts to express their views on public policy issues.
The purpose of talk
radio is to raise the level of public discourse by introducing commentary on
controversial issues. If the Network were to require hosts to refrain from
stating views which others disagree with, or discipline hosts for holding
unpopular views, its hosts would be intimidated from exercising their freedom of
expression. Should this ever become the standard for talk radio, the interchange
of ideas and debate which is the lifeblood of talk radio would be destroyed, and
the freedom of expression which is a hallmark of American democracy would be
eroded.




ahhhhhhh.....sorry TRN, that already happned (see Salem Broadcasting and Clear Channel)







The Network is particularly concerned with respect to efforts to remove Dr.
Savage from the airwaves by persons or organizations who disagree with his
political views. In the case of the underlying July 16th autism clip comments
now in issue, the Network must be cognizant of the fact that the initiation of a
campaign to remove Dr. Savage from the air for those comments was instigated by
Media Matters, an organization which regularly tapes broadcasts of The Michael
Savage Show for the purpose of finding sound bites which could be used in an
effort to remove him from the airwaves, for their own political ends.






At this point I need to point out that very few people listen to talk radio to listen. Most are monitoring to catch some host....liberal or conservative....in some compromising position. David Brock used to do the same thing to liberals as he is doing now to conservatives. We are in a constant state of playing "gotcha" with radio people. I do it, all bloggers do it. And it seems as long as the other side does it, we have to do it to keep things balanced.




The problem is that, until last week, nobody gave a flying F about it (the ratings bear out that most people do not listen to talk radio anyway, let alone watch the news or read a newspaper. What Savage did was the inexcusable...bringing in the civilian into it. Most of those people probably have not heard talk radio in years and did not know who or what Savage was. And now they want his hide, not realized....the same as Black Amewrica did not with Imus....that the vast majority did not and do not listen or care.







In this case, the Network does believe that there has been an effort by Media
Matters to take advantage of an inartful lapse on the part of Dr. Savage in
failing to supply full context, caveats and explanations in the 84 seconds of
comments at issue. While the Network and Dr. Savage regret any pain to families
of autistic children as a result of inartfully phrased comments intended to
enhance the welfare of children, it does appear to the Network that Media
Matters and others now seek to cynically exploit this particular sound bite, out
of context, to harness the pain of parents with truly autistic children, for
their own self-serving agenda, in a broader political effort to remove a voice
they politically disagree with from the airwaves.






Then it if WAS out of context TRN, realease the ENTIRE conversation so people can see what the context was. If there was context.







In this context, the Network does question, if such efforts were to be
successful with respect to Michael Savage, which other hosts will be the next
targets. This is not the first, nor will it be the last, attempt by Media
Matters to exploit any issue for their own self -serving political and social
agenda.






Interesting statements coming from a company that not only employs Savage, but Laura Ingraham, Rusty HUMPhries, Mancow, Tammy Bruce and others who, in essence, do the same thing day after day on your network.





Despite the concerns on the Network's part as to the motivations of Media
Matters and other organizations which seek to remove those hosts they disagree
with from the airwaves, and its belief that no action against Michael Savage is
warranted under all applicable circumstances of this situation, the Network does
want to take some positive action to address the fact that inartful statements
concerning autism were made on one of its programs. As a result, the Network
will begin broadcasting public service announcements with respect to legitimate
autism issues, subject to spot availability, without charge, and will be
encouraging other networks to do the same. In this regard, the Network invites
organizations which would desire to submit public service announcements to
forward them by email to PSA@TALKRADIONETWORK.com, or by mail
to P.O. Box 3755, Central Point, OR 97502.

In contrast to the cynical efforts of Media Matters to manipulate 84
seconds of commentary out of context, for its own ends, the Network does believe
that the issue is about the children. While the 84 seconds at issue has created
intense controversy, the Network welcomes the opportunity to broaden the
discussion on the important issues relating to autism, the "autism spectrum",
the validity of autism diagnoses, and the ever-expanding drugging of America's
children.

The Network commenced this discussion in the July 21st and 22nd
broadcasts of The Michael Savage Show. For those who believe that the 84 seconds
cited by Media Matters defines Michael Savage's views on autism, the Network
recommends going to http://www.savageonautism.com/ to view
a representative sampling of Dr. Savage's views, as well as the applicable
issues, in true context.








And there is a lot of audio on that site. And if you can point on this one thing on all that audio, I will back off.




That would be Michael Savage saying the words, "I'm sorry." And meaning them.








Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hurricam Dolly Coverage

These videos were posted within the last hour 11-12pm PDT 7.23 Hurricane Dolly - Video Shot Outside the shooter's Home In San Benito, TX. 12:30 P.M.

AVN: Cort Cuts Down COPA

3rd Circuit Strikes Down COPA

Judge: Child Online Protection Act is unconstitutional

By: Mark Kernes

Posted: 07/22/2008

PHILADELPHIA – It's always comforting when a federal court, sitting less than a mile from the building where the Declaration of Independence was signed, once again affirms Americans' constitutional right to free speech – this time over the World Wide Web. That's exactly what a panel of the Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals did today in affirming the Judge Lowell A. Reed, Jr.'s opinion that the Child Online Protection Act (COPA) is "impermissibly overbroad and vague."

This represents the third time COPA has come before the Third Circuit – twice before on preliminary injunctions against the law taking effect, and now after Judge Reed found at trial that his fellow judges on the Circuit were right all along: COPA is simply bad law, and not the least restrictive means by which the government could accomplish its (alleged) goal of protecting minors from exposure to sexually explicit content.

"[T]his time the Supreme Court affirmed our decision though it remanded the case to the District Court for a trial on the merits," wrote Senior Judge Morton I. Greenberg for the three-judge panel which included Thomas L. Ambro and Michael A. Chagares. "The Court contemplated that the record would be updated on the remand to reflect the then current technological developments and to account for any changes in the legal landscape. The Court further directed that the District Court determine whether Internet content filters are more effective than enforcement of the COPA restrictions or whether other possible alternatives are less restrictive and more effective than COPA to effectuate Congress’s intention."

COPA, as AVN/Online readers will recall, was the "fix" to the 1996 Communications Decency Act, which banned all "indecent" and "obscene" speech from the Internet – and which was quickly found by the U.S. Supreme Court to be unconstitutionally vague. COPA, on the other hand, limited the banned speech to "material that is harmful to minors" posted only "for commercial purposes," and incorporated a definition of "material harmful to minors" – "minors" here meaning anyone under 17 – that has been widely copied by state legislatures attempting to craft anti-adult zoning and other censorious measures aimed at restricting adults' access to adult sexual speech:

"(A) the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find, taking the material as a whole and with respect to minors, is designed to appeal to, or is designed to pander to, the prurient interest; (B) depicts, describes, or represents, in a manner patently offensive with respect to minors, an actual or simulated sexual act or sexual contact, an actual or simulated normal or perverted sexual act, or a lewd exhibition of the genitals or post-pubescent female breast; and (C) taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors."

COPA's idea of "commercial purposes" was equally unworkable:

"A person makes a communication 'for commercial purposes only if the person when making the communication 'is engaged in the business of making such communications'," Judge Greenberg reported. "A person is 'engaged in the business' when the person: 'devotes time, attention, or labor to such activities, as a regular course of such person’s trade or business, with the objective of earning a profit as a result of such activities . . . . [and] only if the person knowingly causes [or solicits] the material that is harmful to minors to be posted on the World Wide Web'."

Hence, the American Civil Liberties Union, acting for a number of actual or putatively "commercial" individuals and businesses including Salon Media Group, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and a coalition of writers, artists and health educators, sued the government to prevent their sites from being banned.

When trial on the issues was finally held in early 2007, Judge Reed concluded that "COPA facially violates the First and Fifth Amendment rights of the plaintiffs because: (1) COPA is not narrowly tailored to the compelling interest of Congress; (2) defendant has failed to meet his burden of showing that COPA is the least restrictive and most effective alternative in achieving the compelling interest; and (3) COPA is impermissibly vague and overbroad."

Judge Greenberg spends some time in his opinion discussing the "law-of-the-case" doctrine, which essentially says that once the issues in a particular case have been framed, courts at each succeeding stage of the proceedings are generally bound to consider those same issues, unless "extraordinary circumstances" are present. For the most part, such circumstances didn't occur here.

However, since the current opinion is a post-trial opinion rather than one involving a preliminary injunction, both the trial court, and therefore also the appeals court, have taken fresh looks at some issues that have been attendant to the case all along, not the least of which was whether COPA can survive the "strict scrutiny" doctrine that is applied to all cases involving content-based restrictions on speech.

Strict scrutiny requires that a law restricting expression must both serve a compelling government interest in accomplishing a particular goal, and must also be narrowly tailored so that it does not draw in speech that has little or nothing to do with that stated goal. Among the problems the Third Circuit found with COPA, both in its prior opinion and the current one, were that the statute's language, requiring that the "material harmful to minors" be "taken as a whole," would in practice "appl[y] in a literal sense to an infant, a five-year old, or a person just shy of age seventeen," causing "Web publishers [to] face great uncertainty in deciding what minor could be exposed to its publication, so that a publisher could predict, and guard against, potential liability... Under the plain language of COPA, a Web publisher will be subjected to liability if even a small part of his or her Web site displays material ‘harmful to minors."

"In its decision made after the trial on the merits now on appeal before us," Judge Greenburg wrote, "the District Court concluded that COPA is not narrowly tailored because it is both overinclusive and underinclusive ... because it 'prohibits much more speech than is necessary to further Congress’ compelling interest,' [and] because it 'applies to speech that is obscene as to all minors from newborns to age sixteen, and not just to speech that is obscene as to older minors . . . .'"

Since the Third Circuit did not deal with underinclusiveness in its prior decision, it was free to address that concept based on the findings at trial, and it noted that Judge Reed found that, "[T]here is a significant amount of sexually explicit material on the Internet which originates from outside of the United States. . . . [U]nlike Internet content filters which are able to block from view unsuitable material regardless of its origin, COPA has no extra-territorial application. As a result, . . . COPA is not applicable to a large amount of material that is unsuitable for children which originates overseas but is nevertheless available to children in the United States . . . . COPA’s lack of extraterritorial application renders it underinclusive."

This is, of course, a fact that adult Webmasters – and attorneys – have long been familiar with, but the Third Circuit concluded, despite ample evidence adduced at trial regarding COPA's lack of jurisdiction over foreign material, that "if we had to pass on the issue we might conclude that COPA is not unconstitutionally underinclusive." But nonetheless, the panel stated, "We note, however, that our possible disagreement with the District Court on this one point would not change our ultimate decision to affirm its order granting a permanent injunction, as there are numerous other grounds that require us to find that COPA is not narrowly tailored and is unconstitutional. Accordingly, we will refrain from deciding the matter."

The court also found that age verification services and obtaining credit card numbers on sites are virtually useless in preventing minors from accessing explicit material since they "can easily be circumvented by children who generally know the first and last name, street address and zip codes of their parents or another adult." For that and a few other reasons, the Third Circuit agreed that these "affirmative defense" mechanism failed to cure COPA's failure to be narrowly tailored in the amount of speech it restricts.

Finally, "In addition to failing the strict scrutiny test because it is not narrowly tailored, COPA does not employ the least restrictive alternative to advance the Government’s compelling interest in its purpose, the third prong of the three-prong strict scrutiny test," the panel concluded.

The answer? Blocking and filtering software, of course!

"The District Court discussed Internet content filters at length in its Findings of Fact," Judge Greenburg stated. "We will review these findings in detail, as the need to determine whether filters are more effective than COPA to effectuate Congress’s purpose in enacting that statute was the primary reason the Supreme Court remanded the case."

A major part of that remand was to consider the advances in technology since COPA was first considered back in 1999, and sure enough, the district court found that, "[f]iltering products have improved over time and are now more effective than ever before. This is because, as with all software, the filtering companies have addressed problems with the earlier versions of the products in an attempt to make their products better. Another reason the effectiveness of filtering products has improved is that many products now provide multiple layers of filtering. Whereas many filters once only relied on black lists or white lists, many of today’s products utilize black lists, white lists, and real-time, dynamic filtering to catch any inappropriate sites that have not previously been classified by the product."

Judge Reed also found that filtering programs are now harder for children to bypass; that filters will block foreign sexually-oriented sites that COPA can't; and also that the government had failed to show that COPA would be less restrictive than filtering because, "unlike COPA there are no fines or prison sentences associated with filters which would chill speech. Also unlike COPA, . . . filters are fully customizable and may be set for different ages and for different categories of speech or may be disabled altogether for adult use."

And besides, the Supreme Court has already given instruction on how the government could promote and support the use of filters, noting most importantly that, "The need for parental cooperation does not automatically disqualify a proposed less restrictive alternative." (Now, if only the high court would apply that same logic to zoning-mandated setbacks for adult businesses!)

The Third Circuit also perceptively noted, "the circumstance that some parents choose not to use filters does not mean that filters are not an effective alternative to COPA. Though we recognize that some of those parents may be indifferent to what their children see, others may have decided to use other methods to protect their children – such as by placing the family computer in the living room, instead of their children’s bedroom – or trust that their children will voluntarily avoid harmful material on the Internet. Studies have shown that the primary reason that parents do not use filters is that they think they are unnecessary because they trust their children and do not see a need to block content." Let's hear it for Freedom of Choice!

"Given the vast quantity of speech that COPA does not cover but that filters do cover, it is apparent that filters are more effective in advancing Congress’s interest, as it made plain it is in COPA," the panel concluded. "Moreover, filters are more flexible than COPA because parents can tailor them to their own values and needs and to the age and maturity of their children and thus use an appropriate flexible approach differing from COPA’s 'one size fits all' approach. Finally, the evidence makes clear that, although not flawless, with proper use filters are highly effective in preventing minors from accessing sexually explicit material on the Web."

Finally, the appeals court found that COPA is filled with terms that, when it comes to speech restrictions, are impermissibly vague:

"We are bound by our conclusion in ACLU II [the Third Circuit's last opinion on the preliminary injunction dispute] that COPA’s definition of 'minor' renders the statute vague," the Court said. "Furthermore we agree with the District Court’s conclusion that COPA’s use of the phrases and terms 'communication for commercial purposes,' 'as a whole,' 'intentional,' and 'knowing' renders it vague, for the reasons the District Court stated in its opinion."

And with vagueness almost invariably comes overbreadth, because if a statute isn't clear about what speech it covers, it certainly would, in practice, take in more speech that it permissibly may.

"Thus, we explained," the Court said, referring to ACLU II, "an isolated item located somewhere on a Web site that meets the ‘harmful to minors’ definition can subject the publisher of the site to liability under COPA, even though the entire Web page (or Web site) that provides the context for the item would be constitutionally protected for adults (and indeed, may be protected as to minors)."

"In sum, COPA cannot withstand a strict scrutiny, vagueness, or overbreadth analysis and thus is unconstitutional," Judge Greenburg summarized. "We reach our result both through the application of the law-of-the-case doctrine to our determination in ACLU II and on the basis of our independent analysis of COPA and would reach the same result on either basis standing alone. For the foregoing reasons, we will affirm the District Court’s March 22, 2007 order."

It seems almost a foregone conclusion that the Justice Department's next stop will be a cert petition to the U.S. Supreme Court ... but with this excellent analysis by the Third Circuit, and with the Bush administration out the door by Jan. 20, 2009, and a likely concomitant sea change in the Justice Department's policies toward speech, it's hardly a slam dunk that that petition will be filed, or that the Supreme Court will look favorably upon it. However, only time will tell.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Savave Weiner Attacks the Autistic

Savage Stands by Autism Remarks

Michael Savage, the incendiary radio host who last week characterized nearly every autistic child as “a brat who hasn’t been told to cut the act out,” said in a telephone interview Monday morning that he stood by his remarks and had no intention of apologizing to those advocates and parents who have called for his firing over the matter.

“My main point remains true,” Mr. Savage, whose radio audience ranks in size behind only those of Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, said in an interview on Monday. “It is an overdiagnosed medical condition. In my readings, there is no definitive medical diagnosis for autism.”

On his program lastWednesday, Mr. Savage suggested that “99 percent of the cases” of autism were a result of lax parenting. He told his audience: “They don’t have a father around to tell them, ‘Don’t act like a moron. You’ll get nowhere in life.“ He added, “Straighten up. Act like a man. Don’t sit there crying and screaming, idiot.’ ”

Asked Monday if he actually believed that 99 out every 100 cases of autism was misdiagnosed, Mr. Savage conceded that figure was “a little high.” “It was hyperbole,” he said.

But he said he was proud to have prodded discussion on the subject, and planned to give over his entire show on Monday — broadcast live from northern California from 3 to 6 p.m. Pacific time — to parents and other callers who wished to disagree with him, and to educate him.

While Mr. Savage’s program is heard on more than 350 stations nationally, his comments on autism were widely disseminated via e-mail on Friday by Media Matters for America, an advocacy group that dedicates itself, at least in part, to “correcting conservative misinformation in the media.” The organization also posted audio clips of Mr. Savage’s comments on its web site, mediamatters.com.

Some critics were not inclined to wait until Monday’s edition of “Savage Nation,” as the show is known, to register their disagreement with him. In New York City, Autism United, a coalition of organizations that advocate on behalf of autism children and provide services to them, scheduled a protest at 2 p.m. Monday outside the studios of WOR, which carries Mr. Savage’s program weeknights from 6 to 9 p.m. Eastern.

“He characterizes children with autism who are very, very ill — disabled children — as essentially bad kids; the only thing wrong with them is they have parents who don’t discipline them,” said John Gilmore, executive director of Autism United and the father of an 8-year-old diagnosed with autism. “That completely misrepresents what is going on with children with autism.”

“Basically, what he’s doing is parroting what used to be said about autism 40 years ago, back in the heyday of Freudian analysis,” Mr. Gilmore added. “It was blamed on bad parenting. There wasn’t a shred of evidence to support that.”

Paul Siebold, a spokesman for WOR, said in a e-mailed statement: “The views expressed by Michael Savage are his views and are not those of WOR Radio. We regret any consternation that his remarks may have caused to our listeners.”

Mark Masters, the chief executive of Talk Radio Network, which syndicates Mr. Savage’s program and which extended his contract in February, did not respond to a telephone message left at his office Monday morning.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/22/business/media/22sava.html?_r=1&ref=arts&pagewanted=print&oref=slogin

Here are Savages remarks IN CONTEXT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiZBC8lIOIk

Response from Nova M's Mike Malloy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8ZjBJpyY2Q

One thing, Mike....Savage works for TALK RADIO NETWORK....a 3rd string syndicator where most talk show hosts go to die. They can't be picked up by reputable syndicators like ABC, Westwood One, or Premiere Clear Channel, so they go there.

Most of the stations they pick these people up are small town stations in middle America whose owners have the same demented mindset as Savage's. Not to mention cheap: you can run the show free if you run thier spots. That;s why Savage has 300 plus stations.

Continuing:

Media Matters article: http://mediamatters.org/items/200807170005?f=h_top

List of Savage Nation Stations to contact: http://mediamatters.org/action_center/savage_autism/stations

You can cantact TRN here: http://www.talkradionetwork.com/corporatecontacts;jsessionid=614BE51BEF83F80883CF9C3070727BD1

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Library confrontation points up privacy dilemma

Children's librarian Judith Flint was getting ready for the monthly book discussion group for 8- and 9-year-olds on "Love That Dog" when police showed up.

They weren't kidding around: Five state police detectives wanted to seize Kimball Public Library's public access computers as they frantically searched for a 12-year-old girl, acting on a tip that she sometimes used the terminals.

Flint demanded a search warrant, touching off a confrontation that pitted the privacy rights of library patrons against the rights of police on official business.

"It's one of the most difficult situations a library can face," said Deborah Caldwell-Stone, deputy director of intellectual freedom issues for the American Library Association.

Investigators did obtain a warrant about eight hours later, but the June 26 standoff in the 105-year-old, red brick library on Main Street frustrated police and had fellow librarians cheering Flint.

"What I observed when I came in were a bunch of very tall men encircling a very small woman," said the library's director, Amy Grasmick, who held fast to the need for a warrant after coming to the rescue of the 4-foot-10 Flint.

Library records and patron privacy have been hot topics since the passage of the U.S. Patriot Act after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Library advocates have accused the government of using the anti-terrorism law to find out — without proper judicial oversight or after-the-fact reviews — what people research in libraries.

But the investigation of Brooke Bennett's disappearance wasn't a Patriot Act case.

"We had to balance out the fact that we had information that we thought was true that Brooke Bennett used those computers to communicate on her MySpace account," said Col. James Baker, director of the Vermont State Police. "We had to balance that out with protecting the civil liberties of everybody else, and this was not an easy decision to make."

Brooke, from Braintree, vanished the day before the June 26 confrontation in the children's section of the tiny library. Investigators went to the library chasing a lead that she had used the computers there to arrange a rendezvous.

Brooke was found dead July 2. An uncle, convicted sex offender Michael Jacques, has since been charged with kidnapping her. Authorities say Jacques had gotten into her MySpace account and altered postings to make investigators believe she had run off with someone she met online.

Flint was firm in her confrontation with the police.

"The lead detective said to me that they need to take the public computers and I said `OK, show me your warrant and that will be that,'" said Flint, 56. "He did say he didn't need any paper. I said `You do.' He said `I'm just trying to save a 12-year-old girl,' and I told him `Show me the paper.'"

Cybersecurity expert Fred H. Cate, a law professor at Indiana University, said the librarians acted appropriately.

"If you've told all your patrons `We won't hand over your records unless we're ordered to by a court,' and then you turn them over voluntarily, you're liable for anything that goes wrong," he said.

A new Vermont law that requires libraries to demand court orders in such situations took effect July 1, but it wasn't in place that June day. The library's policy was to require one.

The librarians did agree to shut down the computers so no one could tamper with them, which had been a concern to police.

Once in police hands, how broadly could police dig into the computer hard drives without violating the privacy of other library patrons?

Baker wouldn't discuss what information was gleaned from the computers or what state police did with information about other people, except to say the scope of the warrant was restricted to the missing girl investigation.

"The idea that they took all the computers, it's like data mining," said Caldwell-Stone. "Now, all of a sudden, since you used that computer, your information is exposed to law enforcement and can be used in ways that (it) wasn't intended.'"

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080719/ap_on_re_us/library_privacy

Maybe we should be invading.............TORONTO!

Crude Oil Imports (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country May-08 Apr-08 YTD 2008 May-07 YTD 2007

CANADA
SAUDI ARABIA
MEXICO
VENEZUELA
NIGERIA
IRAQ
ANGOLA
ALGERIA
BRAZIL
KUWAIT
COLOMBIA
ECUADOR
RUSSIA
LIBYA
EQUATORIAL GUINEA
Total Imports of Petroleum (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country May-08 Apr-08 YTD 2008 May-07 YTD 2007

CANADA
SAUDI ARABIA
MEXICO
VENEZUELA
NIGERIA
ALGERIA
IRAQ
ANGOLA
RUSSIA
VIRGIN ISLANDS
BRAZIL
COLOMBIA
KUWAIT
UNITED KINGDOM
NORWAY

Friday, July 18, 2008

I want one....NOW!

Dear God,

Please put one of these in L.A.

Amen.....

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Retro CIGARETTE Commericials

Yes, I know, cigarettes will cause cancer and heart diesease and make your breath taste fonk-kee.

But you gotta admit, these were GREAT commercials!

I think this is Gene Wood, the announcer for the original Family Feud as Harry in this one...

And finally........

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Is YOUR'S On the list?

Banks in Colorado, Maryland, Georgia and California top privately-prepared lists of troubled banks being circulated on Wall Street and in Washington.

While the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) is keeping secret its official list of 90 troubled banks, ABC News has obtained other lists prepared by several research groups and financial analysts.

The lists use versions of the so-called "Texas ratio" which compare a bank's assets and reserves to its non-performing loans, based on financial data made public by the FDIC in March.

Analysts say banks with a ratio over 100 per cent would be the most likely to fail, based on what happened to Texas savings and loans during the 1980's.

"That a fair measure," said Hal Scott, a Harvard law school professor specializing in banking law.

"It doesn't mean every one of those banks is going to become insolvent, but if you have more bad loans than assets, it's not a bad way to judge what could happen," Scott told ABC News.

One list prepared by Research Associates of America, a non-profit group in Washington, D.C. funded by labor unions, reported 10 banks with a ratio over 100. (click here to see the list)

"This is information that the FDIC essentially hides in plain sight," said Jeff Fiedler, president of Research Associates of America.

At the top of the list was ANB Financial National Association of Bentonville, AR, with a 344 ratio. The bank failed earlier this year and was later taken over by a Louisiana bank.

The Colorado Federal Savings Bank of Greenwood Village, CO, was listed as having a bad loan to asset ratio of 244.82.

Late today, Colorado Federal's president and CEO, Randy Ilich, reported that a new owner bought the bank two weeks ago, adding more than $10 million in capital.

"The previous owners were in serious trouble, but we are now in a very good place," Ilich told ABC News.

Ilich said Colorado Federal had suffered from "fraudulent transactions" and speculative home buyers who could not make their payments.

"We now have more than enough reserves in place to go forward," said Ilich.

The Eastern Savings Bank of Hunt Valley, MD was listed as having a Texas ratio of 222.74, meaning it had twice as many bad loans as assets and surplus.

Repeated calls seeking comment from Eastern were not returned.

The Integrity Bank of Alpharetta, GA was listed with a 191 ratio.

Calls from ABC News to Integrity Bank were not returned, but the Atlanta Constitution quoted the bank's president and chief executive, Patrick Frawley, as saying the Texas ratio is "a little misleading."

Frawley said the Texas ratio doesn't count all of the bank's reserves for losses and fails to reflect that the loans are secured with real estate collateral.

Jan Schultz, chairman of the First National Bank of Brookville in Illinois, also said the numbers don't tell the whole story. While his bank has many nonperforming loans, they are secured by real estate whose value remains high, even with the slumping market, he said.

"We don't anticipate significant loan losses at all," Schultz told ABC News.

With a ratio just under 100, at 96, the $13-billion Downey Savings and Loan of Newport Beach, California is the biggest financial institution with a high ratio of bad loans.

Tom Prince, Downey's chief operating officer, said many of the bank's non-performing loans in March have since become current and that the Texas ratio "is only a statistic."

"I don't think there is any one number you can point to and say that will predict what will happen going forward," Prince said. "We feel good about our situation," he said.

The banks on the list are FDIC-insured, meaning that depositors with less than $100,000 would be covered should their banks go under.

Bank

City

State

“Texas-ratio”

Colorado Federal Savings Bank

Greenwood Village

CO

244.8

Eastern Savings Bank, FSB

Hunt Valley

MD

222.7

Integrity Bank

Alpharetta

GA

191.6

Ameribank, Inc.

Welch

WV

153.7

First Priority Bank

Bradenton

FL

122.6

First Security National Bank

Norcross

GA

112.1

Magnet Bank

Salt Lake City

UT

110.4

Security Pacific Bank

Los Angeles

CA

102.8

First National Bank of Brookfield

Brookfield

IL

102.1

The State Bank of Lebo

Lebo

KS

100.6

Source: Research Associates of America

http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=5374205&page=1

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Savage Weiner Outed!

Savage: "The children's minds are being raped by the homosexual mafia"

Summary: Responding to a caller who said, "I had to explain to my young son why these two men were holding hands the other day," Michael Savage stated, "You've got to explain to the children ... why God told people this was wrong." He went on to say, "You have to explain this to them in this time of mental rape that's going on. The children's minds are being raped by the homosexual mafia, that's my position. They're raping our children's minds."

Responding to a caller who said, "I had to explain to my young son why these two men were holding hands the other day," radio host Michael Savage stated, during the June 16 broadcast of The Savage Nation, "You've got to explain to the children ... why God told people this was wrong." He went on to say, "You have to explain this to them in this time of mental rape that's going on. The children's minds are being raped by the homosexual mafia, that's my position. They're raping our children's minds."

During a discussion about gay marriage with a previous caller, Savage said: "It's not a joke when you pervert an institution like marriage, which is in trouble enough. It's not a joke." He added, "Our children are being destroyed by this." He went on to say of gay marriage, "It's a very important story. The children don't know what to make of it. Children nine, 10 are saying, 'I'm gay.' They don't know what it even means." He added: "It's a giant propaganda machine trying to pervert children."

Talk Radio Network, which syndicates Savage's show, claims that Savage is heard on more than 350 radio stations. The Savage Nation reaches at least 8.25 million listeners each week, according to Talkers Magazine, making it one of the most listened-to talk radio shows in the nation, behind only The Rush Limbaugh Show and The Sean Hannity Show.

From the June 16 edition of Talk Radio Network's The Savage Nation:

SAVAGE: San Francisco, Tina, welcome to The Savage Nation.

CALLER: Well, you make a really good point, Michael, and you have a great show, but I still think that you're not wise in being so adamant about these gay marriages. What difference does it make what they do? You're going to work yourself to a big heart attack like Tim Russert and --

SAVAGE: No, I won't work myself into a big heart attack. I'll tell you why: because the truth will set me free. It always has.

CALLER: But --

SAVAGE: Aren't you tired of the propaganda that every newspaper you pick up today shows old, ugly women getting married?

CALLER: Well, as a matter of fact, yes, I think that should be a private thing. But I also think --

SAVAGE: Well, why do you suppose every newspaper in America is showing this story?

CALLER: They have an agenda, of course, but still --

SAVAGE: Well, I have an obligation as a social commentator to say enough is enough, I've had enough of it. Just as I had enough of the Tim Russert worship on Friday. I had enough of it. I had enough of Obama a year ago -- he looks like Alfred E. Neuman to me.

CALLER: It's a joke, whether you're gay or straight, it's mostly a joke, but the thing is we don't want you to get all --

SAVAGE: It's not a joke when you steal an institution as fragile as marriage and you pervert it with a mockery. It's not a joke. It's not a joke when you pervert an institution like marriage, which is in trouble enough. It's not a joke. Our children are being destroyed by this.

CALLER: Well --

SAVAGE: I disagree with you totally. It's a very important story. The children don't know what to make of it. Children nine, 10 are saying, "I'm gay." They don't know what it even means. It's a giant propaganda machine trying to pervert children. That's my opinion.

Monterrey, California. Tom, what's you're opinion?

CALLER: Yes, I'm calling from the People's Republic of Monterrey, and I had to explain to my young son why these two men were holding hands the other day and he said, "Dad, didn't they say that that's wrong in the Bible?" And I said, "Yes, they did, and yes it's wrong" and yes to everything that he had to say about it. And I told him, I said, "That's the wrongest thing you've ever seen besides the rest of the politicians and the media and CNBC." Because --

SAVAGE: You've got to try to explain to the children why the -- why God told people this was wrong. You've got to explain to them, to the children, how it twists everything. Just take them down to a duck pond and show them a boy duck and a girl duck and then show the ducklings and say to them, "There must be a boy duck and a girl duck for there to be babies." It's the same with a dog, puppies come from a mother duck -- a mother pup, a mother dog. There needs to be a boy dog and a girl dog. You have to explain this to them in this time of mental rape that's going on. The children's minds are being raped by the homosexual mafia, that's my position. They're raping our children's minds.

CALLER: I'm not buying into it, which is -- I found was pretty neat, but, hey I enjoy your show, keep --

SAVAGE: Well, good, unless somebody else does. Well, OK, you don't care about it. To me it matters. To me it matters. It's just that the media is afraid of them or owned by them, and everyone's catering to them. It's like catering to Al Sharpton. You see the story that came out on him? You haven't seen the story all over the media? Can't report it, why? Because he's not a white man? So suddenly he's allowed to do things to companies like Jesse Jackson did for years -- without producing a product or a service? Just by threatening a boycott, they give him money? Well there was a name for it when Al Capone was around. I guess that's gone, gone with the wind, everyone's afraid in the corporate world, plus it's not their money anyway. They're not playing with their money, they're playing with your money. So the CEOs who run the companies do whatever they want to do with the money including buying off potential boycotts.

—Z.A.

Friday, July 11, 2008

The truth's a bitch, ain't it

I have often said to whoever would listen, that if Al-Q would really want to do some damage to our fine republic on our soil, the need not flay any planes in any buildings, blow up anything, or shoot anybody. All they have to do is inject enough sodium pentathol, aka "truth serum," into the water supply to be effective, then sit back, prop the feet up, and watch CNN for 48 hours, gleefully witnessing the end of civilization via forced truth-telling by all.




Of course, we are not advocating that, considering all the lies our lives seem to be based on, but reaction to certain truths in the last few months could seem to make a point for my argument.




To wit:
















April 6th 2008: "...they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or
antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or
anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."-Presidential
candidate Barack Obama. (full speech here:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mayhill-fowler/obama-no-surprise-that-ha_b_96188.html)












And what did he say that was so wrong? Considering that said bitterness has been the foundation of modern-day conservatism for years.









It is that bitterness that has sprung up fears of mauarding bands of Mexicans taking over every 7-Eleven and McDonald's (though one would be hard pressed to find any white people filling out any employment forms for thier companies). Afraid that our children will be exposed to lurid sex on the web (forgetting that the same kids have seduced thier teachers into practicing said luridity). It is a fear that has turned formerly friendly airports into security/paranoia outposts that could have only beem dreamed by Orwell for "1984."









Not only do they cling to these things, but they have morphed all this into a timidity that has basically broadcast the notion that to them, freedom is a liablity, fear is an asset, and security is something that we could easily trade any right for.









See FISA.












Jan. 13, 2008: "“We are deeply involved in the importing of drugs, the
exporting of guns and the training of professional killers. … We believe in
white supremacy and black inferiority and believe it more than we believe in
God. … We conducted radiation experiments on our own people. … We care nothing
about human life if the ends justify the means.And … And … And! God! Has got! To
be sick! Of this sh*t!”-Rev Jeremiah Wright











First, those radiation experiments. It was known as the Tuskegee Project. Read here: http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0762136.html.







The importing of drugs by the CIA into the inner cities has been well documented, especially by acclaimed San Jose Mercury News reporter Gary Webb (http://www.narconews.com/darkalliance/drugs/index.htm).







As for the training of professional killers, see Blackwater. For starters.







As for white supremacy and black inferiority, not to mention the Rev's statements, superiority has been preached not just from white pulpits, but black ones as well. In fact the notion that your subset is truly the Chosen People of God has been tought to whites, blacks, Jews, Christians, Muslims, countries, regions, and football teams. These are the things that are said when outsiders are not in the room. It's just that this time, someone had the presence of mind to have a video camera and a YouTube account.







I remember as a member of the Bethlehem Baptist Church of Lawton, OK, I heard my kindly pastor say from the pulpit that us fine Black folks should not intermingle with those "Oriental" women, for they are plotting to turn all black men into Buddhists!







That's a novel idea...prostelization via copulation.







The bottom line many black folks are as racist as many white folks, keeping the same low profile. It's just the blacks don't do the sheet thing.







And racism in ANY form is wrong. But for us to rid it completly, we must recognize it in our own spirit.





Now we come to....







"We have sort of become a nation of whiners," he said. "You just hear this
constant whining, complaining about a loss of competitiveness, America in
decline"-John McCain campaign advisor Phil Gramm.






Phil Gramm has been getting brickbats all week for this statment. Actually he should get a medal.





There has been a lot of vitrol from the left about Gramm's statements, which is funny for all the whining we liberals do. But do not forget, CONSERVATIVES also can stomp a grape just as well.





Income, gas prices, immigration, that homeless guy on the corner....you name it, we whine about it. The problem is that neither side wants to actually find solutions to whatever problem they are whining about.

Examples are too many to list, and I do not have the stamina. So let me point out one. Energy.

I have heard the whines before. Over 30 years ago, in fact, when people were bitching about the extremly high price of eighty-nine cents for a gallon of gas. EIGHTY-NINE CENTS. And people were predicting WWIII if gas went up to five bucks a gallon.

Well, 30 years later.....lets say we haven't seen any mushroom clouds lately.

But its the same whines. We need to drill. Drilling will destroy the environment. We need to tax windfall profits. Don't tell Americans they can't make money. We need to free ourselves from foriegn oil. Gas is too expensive.

Everything except the one thing we should have done.......adopt a national energy polticy.

It's too easy to bitch and moan. There is no sacrifice there. There is no giving up something for a common good. Just blame anyone but yourself and let George or whoever do it.

And the way thing as are going, we will continue to whine about energy policy and a lot of other things as well.

Like the high price of gas that you are putting in the SUV. Solution: Ditch the SUV, get a hybrid (they make hybrid SUV's you know.....check Chevy, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota)

Whine about protecting your kid against the evils of sex? Solution: stop protecting them! Give them the information they need and if they still want to engage, give them a condom and a pill. ANd let them know that you will be there for them no matter what.

Whine about the President, your Governor, the Senate, the House, the Mayor, the Dog Catcher? Solution: VOTE! There is an election coming up. I hope you can make it.

Whining about how much money you are spending? Make more. You may have shined that Amway guy on the other day, but the guys in Ada just paide out 10 figures worth out in bonuses in 2007. SOmeone's getting that. And if that's not your thing, fins something else. But find something.

In other words, there are solutions to any situation. You just have to find it and activate it. And stop the whining.

Oh.....one more:

That quote about Jesse Jackson wanting to rip Obama's balls off?

Obama voted for FISA with the retroactive immunity for the telecoms. He has not brought up any legislation or resolutions holding Bush accountable for his crimes. To my knowledge he has not halted the funding for this war illegal.

As much as I like him and despit the fact that I will probably vote for him....well put it this way: Jesse, before you rip something off, make sure there is something there to rip off.