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Year: 2007

Greg Palast Offers Job to Tasered Journalism Student

Anna King 

by Brad Friedman Brad Blog

Andrew Meyer Currently ‘On Ice’, According to Investigate Journalist/NYTimes Best Selling Author of ‘Mysterious Yellow Book’…

We just spoke with Greg Palast, whose Armed Madhouse paperback (or “mysterious ‘yellow book'”, as lazy Washington Post blogger, Emil Steiner “reported” it) was being waved and alluded to by University of Florida student Andrew Meyer just prior to his being Tasered by UF cops earlier this week.

Palast says he is offering the journalism student a job as a paid intern. Meyer had described Palast, in his question to Kerry about why he conceded the 2004 Presidential Election so early, as “the top investigate journalist in America.”

“Did you notice he never let the book touch the ground?,” an impressed Palast wryly noted.

Meyers was Tasered by the authorities as the majority of the students in the crowd sat passively during their fellow student’s pleas for help and shrieks of pain. He was then arrested and charged with a felony for “inciting a riot and disrupting a school function.” (Police report here [PDF])

“His attorneys seem to be keeping him on ice,” Palast told us, when we asked if he’d been able to officially offer the gig to Meyer.

Indeed, our note to Meyer sent Tuesday, inviting him to Guest Blog his experience here at The BRAD BLOG, has so far similarly gone unanswered.

Silenced Rather Sues CBS-
Read the story behind the lawsuit

Greg Palast 

September 19th 2007- Dan Rather has filed a lawsuit against CBS claiming violation of his contract- read the real story behind Bush’s guard service and the necklace-ing of the media from Palast’s Armed Madhouse.

The power and the pay-off

rather vietJune, 2006- They finally put Dan Rather out of his misery. Today, CBS finally terminated him and sent him to the electronic glue factory — all for reporting the truth. But not all of it.

Rather’s “unsubstantiated story of Bush’s military service” (says USA Today) got him canned. Yet, all the poor man did was repeat a story we put on BBC Television a year earlier — that Poppy Bush put in the fix to get his son out of ‘Nam and into the Texas Air Guard, spending his war years guarding Houston from Viet Cong attack.

But Dan never reported this: the documentation from inside the US Department of Justice detailing the fix. Why not? …more

Student Tasered for ‘Armed Madhouse’ Question to Kerry

Greg Palast 

“[Palast] said you won the 2004 election – isn’t that amazing?
There were multiple reports of disenfranchising of Black voters on the day of the election in 2004 in Florida and Ohio. … How could you concede the election on the day?”
by Greg Palast

See the video
We warned you: ‘Armed Madhouse’ is a dangerous book. Yesterday, Andrew Meyer, a University of Florida student was(Andrew Stanfill / Alligator Staff) attacked by five cops, zapped with tasers and arrested after demanding that Senator John Kerry answer the question.

Meyer, just released from jail and now facing five years in prison for resisting arrest, held up a copy of the book and began …

Student to John Kerry:
“I want to recommend a book to you. It’s called ‘Armed Madhouse by Greg Palast.’ He’s the top investigative journalist in America.”

Kerry: “I have the book. I’ve already read it.”

Student: “… In this book, it says there were 5 million votes and you won the election. … How could you concede the election on the day?”(Andrew Stanfill / Alligator Staff)

Meyer, a telecommunications student at the Gainesville campus, asked related questions including a query as to why Kerry refused to vote for impeachment. When he passed his alloted one minute mic time, five cops jumped him, threw him to the ground, then shot him with taser shockers.

Kerry, true to character, stood immobile.

Now, I’ve given many talks. And some questioners have taken too long at the mic. But I’ve never done the Stalin thing of cops and electronic beating to limit the discussion. (Yes, it’s true that Randi Rhodes recently threatened me with a taser when I’ve monopolized the mic in her studio.)

The Washington Post reported only that Meyer was holding a “mysterious yellow book.” VERY mysterious. [Read the excerpt]

I would note that enchained student was busted in Alachua County, Florida, where, six years ago, I uncovered massive, systematic and utterly illegal disenfranchisement of Black voters – ordered by Gov. Jeb Bush’s office just before the 2000 election. (“Florida’s Disappeared Voters,” February 2001, The Nation.) Alachua remains under federal scrutiny for its long history of racial bias against Black voters.

I must admit I feel some appreciation for Meyer, especially because, even while he was being shot with untold amps of electricity, until he was handcuffed, he would not let go of his mysterious yellow book, ‘Armed Madhouse.’

Hear the update live tonight on the new “Palast Report” on Air America Radio. The Palast Report will now broadcast every Tuesday night, at 8pm Eastern, on Richard Greene’s new weeknight show, “Clout.”

And get America’s most SHOCKING book, the New York Times bestseller, Armed Madhouse: From Baghdad to New Orleans (Penguin 2007).
Subscribe to Palast’s writings and view his investigative reports for BBC Television’s Newsnight, at www.GregPalast.com.

Read the excerpt from Armed Madhouse that Andrew Meyer got arrested for mentioning here.

Cranks and Kooks: Kerry Won in ’04

Greg Palast 

Armed Madhouse, the new book by Greg Palast

Listen to the audiobook
THE CON

Kerry Won. Now Get Over It . . .

…because they’re putting ’08 in their pocket. Republicans just seem to have that winning spirit. They also have caging lists, felons of the future, rotting ballots, snuffed canaries, and a lock on the votes of Kissinger-Americans and the undead.

WARNING! There are cranks and kooks and crazies out there on the Internet who say that George Bush lost the 2004 election, like one titled, “Kerry Won” published on the TomPaine.com web site two days after the election. I wrote it.

On November 11, a week after TomPaine.com published it, I received an e-mail from The New York Times Washington Bureau. Hot on the investigation of the veracity of the vote, The Times reporter asked me pointed questions:

Question #1: Are you a “sore loser”?

Question #2: Are you a “conspiracy nut”? …more

Bush’s Fake Sheik Whacked:
The Surge and the Al Qaeda Bunny

Greg Palast 

A special investigative report from inside Iraq
Bush and Abu Risha Photo by AFP

Monday, September 17, 2007- Did you see George all choked up? In his surreal TV talk on Thursday, he got all emotional over the killing by Al Qaeda of Sheik Abu Risha, the leader of the new Sunni alliance with the US against the insurgents in Anbar Province, Iraq.

Bush shook Abu Risha’s hand two weeks ago for the cameras. Bush can shake his hand again, but not the rest of him: Abu Risha was blown away just hours before Bush was to go on the air to praise his new friend.

Here’s what you need to know that NPR won’t tell you.

1. Sheik Abu Risha wasn’t a sheik.
2. He wasn’t killed by Al Qaeda.
3. The new alliance with former insurgents in Anbar is as fake as the sheik – and a murderous deceit.

How do I know this? You can see the film – of “Sheik” Abu Risha, of the guys who likely whacked him and of their other victims.

Just in case you think I’ve lost my mind and put my butt in insane danger to get this footage, don’t worry. I was safe and dry in Budapest. It was my brilliant new cameraman, Rick Rowley, who went to Iraq to get the story on his own.

Rick’s “the future of TV news,” says BBC. He’s also completely out of control. Despite our pleas, …more

“They wanted them poor niggers out of there.”

Greg Palast 

New Orleans two years after

[Thurs August 30] “They wanted them poor niggers out of there and they ain’t had no intention to allow it to be reopenedMalik Rahim of Common Ground Relief to no poor niggers, you know? And that’s just the bottom line.”

It wasn’t a pretty statement. But I wasn’t looking for pretty. I’d taken my investigative team to New Orleans to meet with Malik Rahim. Pretty isn’t Malik’s concern.

We needed an answer to a weird, puzzling and horrific discovery. Among the miles and miles of devastated houses, rubble still there today in New Orleans, we found dry, beautiful homes. But their residents were told by guys dressed like Ninjas wearing “Blackwater” badges: “Try to go into your home and we’ll arrest you.”

These aren’t just any homes. They are the public housing projects of the city; the  …more

Big Easy to Big Empty:
How the White House is Still Drowning New Orleans

Greg Palast 

From the film commercially released this week based on the investigation for Democracy Now! – the story you won’t get on CNN:

malik.jpg

“They don’t want no poor niggers back in – that’s the bottom line.”

gregwithiemletter.jpg

“By midnight the White House knew – but the state police didn’t know.”

stoptheiem.jpg

“Stop that camera, we’ve called security.”

brodbaggert.jpg

“This is criminal negligence for which people go to jail.”

pamelalewisprisonsetup.jpg

“It is a prison set-up. I’ve never been to the bottom
of the barrel until I came here.”

From the film, Big Easy to Big Empty: The Untold Story of the Drowning of New Orleans, an investigation by Greg Palast for Democracy Now! Re-released this week in DVD including exclusive interviews by Palast and Amy Goodman of heroes and villains – the deep horror, the dark humor and the no-bullshit truth you won’t get on CNN.

Get a copy of the DVD here, watch an excerpt here, watch the hour-long broadcast on Link TV tonight, and read the new chapter on New Orleans in Armed Madhouse click here to buy, or hear it read here.
www.GregPalast.com

Big Easy to Big Empty
The Untold Story of the

Drowning of New Orleans

Greg Palast 

It’s been two years already. If they had lived in Bangladesh during the tsunami, they’d be back home. But in New Orleans USA, more than half the original residents have not, CAN NOT, return to “The City That Care Forgot.” Now, in Big Easy to Big Empty, our investigative documentary re-released this week, meet the people that EVERYONE forgot.
stephensmith cap– Stephen Smith who had no car, and no way to evacuate New Orleans. He tells us his devastating story of being left behind, closing the eyes of an old man who died while waiting to be rescued on a bridge, watching helicopters soar pass overhead, and no one coming to rescue him or the dozens stranded with him, on that bridge, for days. After the storm it took him 3 months to find his children. He is currently working in a grocery store in Houston and wants to come back to New Orleans but has no place to live.

– Ivor Van Heerden, Deputy Director of Louisiana State University’s Hurricane Center reveals who knew what and when — before, during, and after the storm — and warns that his job is in danger for telling us his story.

“FEMA knew at eleven o’clock on Monday that the levees had breached, at 2 o’clock they flew over the 17th St. Canal and took video of the breaches, by midnight on Monday the White House knew, but none of us knew.”

brodbagert cap– Brod Bagert, Former New Orleans’ City Councilman and lawyer takes us to a neighbor’s house where 5 bodies were found after the storm — in the back yard we find the levees that were supposed to protect the city from flooding; the levees that were supposed to protect the people who died here.

“Old ladies watched as water came up to their nose, over their eyes, and they drowned in houses just like this, in this neighborhood because of reckless negligence that is unanswered for.”

pamelalewis cap 1– Pamela Lewis, who had guns shoved in her face when she tried to evacuate with her 86 year old mother, has now been relocated over 100 miles from the city to one of FEMA’s giant trailer parks fenced in with barbed-wire and has lived there for 9 months. The trailer park is in a field literally in the middle of nowhere behind an Exxon Oil Refinery — the only bus available for residents goes only to Wal-Mart.

“It is a prison set-up. I’ve never been to the bottom of the barrel until I came here.”

patriciathomas

– Patricia Thomas who broke her teeth while trying to evacuate is now homeless and is locked out of her public housing unit in the Lafitte housing project near the French Quarter. We go with her as she enters her blockaded apartment (which she now plans to illegally occupy) and find that it was not damaged by the flooding and could be re-opened within a week’s time.

“Katrina didn’t do this. Man did this. This was man made.”

malik caption

– Malik Rahim, Director of Common Ground who is building communities aimed at bringing people back to New Orleans with affordable housing, collectives, and job-placement assistance.

“If we could do it – we could take a thousand people and house them in a humane way, why can’t the federal government do it?”

henryirvingsr

– Henry Irving Sr., home-owner in the Lower 9th Ward. His entire neighborhood has been completely destroyed, hardly anyone has returned, and those that have returned have been told not to — and yet Mr. Irving plans to stay.

“That’s what they want us to do. They want us to get discouraged and to leave. I’m going to stay here long enough to see it come back.”

Big Easy to Big Empty: The Untold Story of the Drowning of New Orleans.

“One of the best documentaries I’ve ever seen.” – Christiane Brown, Air America Radio.

SPECIAL THANKS!
This report was possible only through the extraordinary support we receive from our donors. If you would like to support our work you can do so today and recieve a gift — just click here.

A very, very, special thanks to our Associate Producers on this particular story — without their generosity and support this report would not have been possible:

Greg Palast, Writer & Reporter
Matt Pascarella, Executive Producer
Jacquie Soohen, Co-Producer, Filmographer & Editor
Coordinating Producers: Leni von Eckardt, Zach Roberts & Christy Speicher

Associate Producers

Ann & Mike Chickey
David Kahn
Kenneth Green
Keith Fuchslocher
Paul Mann
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Barbara Sher
John Pearce

American Nightmare:
Gonzales “wrong and illegal and unethical”

Greg Palast 

“What I’ve experienced in the last six months is the ugly side of the American dream.”

Former Prosecutor Iglesias discusses Gonzales with PalastLast month, David Iglesias and I were looking out at the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island where his dad had entered the US from Panama decades ago. It was a hard moment for the military lawyer who, immediately after Attorney General Alberto Gonzales fired Iglesias as US Attorney for New Mexico, returned to active military duty as a Naval Reserve JAG.

Captain Iglesias, cool and circumspect, added something I didn’t expect:

“They misjudged my character, I mean they really thought I was just going to roll over and give them what they wanted and when I didn’t, that I’d go away quietly but I just couldn’t do that. You know US Attorneys and the Justice Department have a history of not taking into consideration partisan politics. That should not be a factor. And what they tried to do is just wrong and illegal and unethical.”

When a federal prosecutor says something is illegal, it’s not just small talk. And the illegality wasn’t small. It’s called, “obstruction of justice,” and it’s a felony crime.

Specifically, Attorney General Gonzales, Iglesias told me, wanted him to bring what the prosecutor called “bogus voter fraud” cases. In effect, US Attorney Iglesias was under pressure from the boss to charge citizens with crimes they didn’t commit. Saddam did that. Stalin did that. But Iglesias would NOT do that – even at the behest of the Attorney General. Today, Captain Iglesias, reached by phone, told me, “I’m not going to file any bogus prosecutions.”

But it wasn’t just Gonzales whose acts were “unethical, wrong and illegal.

It was Gonzales’ boss.

Iglesias says, “The evidence shows right now, is that [Republican Senator Pete] Domenici complained …more

Hurricane George
How the White House Drowned New Orleans

Greg Palast 

It’s been two years. And America’s media is about to have another tear-gasm over New Orleans. Maybelower9th.jpg Anderson Cooper will weep again. The big networks will float into the moldering corpse of the city and give you uplifting stories about rebuilding and hope.

Now, let’s cut through the cry-baby crap. Here’s what happened two years ago – and what’s happening now.

This is what an inside source told me. And it makes me sick:

“By midnight on Monday, the White House knew. Monday night I was at the state Emergency Operations Center and nobody was aware that the levees had breeched. Nobody.”

The charge is devastating: That, on August 29, 2005,

…more

You Are Chum:
Sub-prime loan sharks

Greg Palast 

Greg Palast interviewed by Cynthia Black on ActionPoint KPHX Phoenix
Loan Sharks are back. They don’t break legs anymore – they just take your home. Predatory lending is killing the market. And here’s what you can do about it. Download the podcast

New Orleans- Hot Air VS. Hidden Truth

Greg Palast 

Pamela Lewis at the Lafitte housing project in New Orleans in 2006
August 20th, 2007

So it’s that time of year again. The time when the Weather Channel is abuzz with warnings of new disasters in the Gulf Coast, the experts once again start talking about Global Warming’s effect on hurricanes, and finally Anderson Cooper and the rest of the tearful network elite make their trip to the Big Easy. Clad in their linen suits they will talk to the people, sympathize with them, and show all the progress the has occurred in the past two years. Happy stories sell.

There will be little or no discussion of why there was no evacuation plan, why the White House never did tell the locals about the levee breaches or why are people still two years later living in Guantanamo-like camps. We can be sure that the words ‘right to return‘ won’t pass the lips of the talking heads.

It’s stories like that that get reporters in trouble, you lose access, you lose your precious seat in the press conference. Well we find press conferences boring, and we never get called on anyway. The last time we were in Louisiana, Homeland Security was called on us… so we figure we must be doing something right.

You can read a full review of Palast’s writings on New Orleans and Katrina here. Also you can see a clip from the film Big Easy to Big Empty, listen to podcasts and read excerpts from Armed Madhouse.

…more

Busted & Crimes of The Times

Greg Palast 

Palast and Conyers Looking over the E-mails

Cutely buried in the 18th paragraph in a story about Alberto Gonzales on Sunday was a slyly-worded updated confession by the New York Times that, in 2004, the Bush Administration leaned on its editors to spike a story about illegal invasions of citizens’ private records (“data mining”). The Times editors smothered the story. They finally ran it – a year later – after Bush was safely re-elected.

As a journalist, this makes me want to throw up.

For two reasons: First, while The Times was covering up Bush’s KGB-style data-mining operation, the Palast team was revealing its secrets. We published confidential FBI memos detailing horrific schemes for illegal spying using Bush’s favored contractor, a company called ChoicePoint Inc.

The second reason The Times ‘confession’ makes me ill: While the publishers at the Paper of Record were counting their millions, the Palast Investigative Fund was slowly going broke.

Well, we’ve made it: Last Friday, the main-stream US media, through the venerable PBS program ‘NOW’, finally broadcast our reportage on the “caging” of voters, a story we first broke 3 years ago. BEFORE the 2004 election.

We’ve made it in another way: Friday was also the day I was informed that the Palast Investigative Fund was dead broke, technically bankrupt, with way less than zero in the account.

Bluntly: if we don’t get some help, and fast, we’re sunk. We are throwing staff overboard and halting some operations while we seek funds to keep afloat.

I’m pleading with you to do three things:

1. Watch PBS ‘NOW’ on voter ‘caging’. Then, if you think our work is important…
2. Donate at least $100 (tax deductible) to the Palast Investigative Fund. With heartfelt gratitude, I’ll send you a personalized, signed copy of Armed Madhouse (hardbound or paperback, your choice), or the DVD “Big Easy to Big Empty,” the untold story of the drowning of New Orleans.

(For $250, I’ll sign and send a whole BOX of Raw Journalism: 2 books: Armed Madhouse and Impeach the President, 2 DVDs: Big Easy to Big Empty and American Blackout, the Audio Book Armed Madhouse and the Spoken Word CD Live from the Armed Madhouse). Or simply make an open no-gift donation for a sum of your choice. (All options and many other signed items can be found at the Palast Investigative Fund Homepage.) …more

Palast on PBS’ NOW
‘The Fix is in’ for 2008

Greg Palast 

Catch Greg Palast on PBS’ top current affairs program.

WATCH THE REPORT HERE

‘NOW’ furthers the story Palast first busted open for Britain’s BBC Newsnight, the scheme to attack voters of color – the ‘Blue’ ones.

For Bill Moyers’ capable successor, David Brancaccio, Palast lays out the latest evidence never before televised.

ig5.jpgvultu

Reporter Palast for BBC interviewing fired US Attorney David Iglesias in New York. Both appear on the PBS broadcast. (photo: J. Soohen)

Slippery Backroom Deals of the Iraqi Oil Law

Greg Palast 

aw-radio-logo2.gifListen to Palast explain the oil game in Iraq, the deal behind the U.S. attorney scandal, Hillary Clinton’s shameful corruption and her husband’s pardon of arch-criminal Mark Rich, and the deal struck by Republicans to impeach Bill only for the silly sex scandal instead of his felonious relationship with the Indonesian Riady family billionaires as long as the Democrats promised not to expose the Republican’s felonious connections to the American Koch family billionaires.

“Hidden, Exiled, Ignored”

Greg Palast 

I Hait this book!“Armed Madhouse” – A Review

by Mick Jackson
http://www.opednews.com

Greg Palast is a national treasure. A hidden, an exiled, an ignored national treasure, but a national treasure, nevertheless.

In his latest book “Armed Madhouse” he continues the dissection of the way America is governed that he had exposed in his earlier New York Times bestseller The Best Democracy Money Can Buy. His latest book is replete with humor, probably on the grounds that in a situation where the choice is laughter or tears, well, go with the former.

The book opens with future dystopia of Jeb Bush presiding over a country with Wal-Mart churches …more