If you do not yet know who Don Siegelman is or what has happened in this country, then let me ask you to please read the following articles and visit the following websites, before I tell you what the latest developments are:
Harper's Excellent Coverage via Scott Horton, here
My blog, at-largely, here
And this evening's 60 Minutes broadcast, here
Now, let me tell you what has been going on. As 60 Minutes was putting its show together, the White House put pressure on CBS -- the parent company -- to kill the show. Over the last few days, as word got out that the 60 Minutes show would air tonight, Karl Rove's associates began planting defamatory stories about journalists working on this story (see example here) and attacking the whistle-blower who came forward, Dana Jill Simpson. If you recall, Ms. Simpson testified, under oath, to Congress about Karl Rove's involvement in politicizing the DOJ. What you may not know, however, is that her house mysteriously caught fire and she was run off the road in the weeks leading up to her testimony.
What you may also not know is that Governor Siegelman's house was broken into twice during his trial as was his attorney's office.
Yesterday, the attacks on Simpson and journalists increased with a series of emails from the Alabama GOP. See Here.
Tonight was something truly unseen in US history. During the 60 Minutes broadcast and ONLY during the Don Siegelman portion -- the screen went black for Huntsville residents and Mobile residents. There are other reports of other locations, but I have not yet confirmed those. In Florida, a series of strange ads were running about the FISA bill and how Democrats are not tough on terrorism, apparently during the 60 Minutes hour and also right before 60 Minutes, but not after (still trying to confirm when the ads stopped running).
In other words, in the United States of America, a man is imprisoned for being a Democrat. When reporters attempt to get this story out, they are threatened and smeared. When all else fails, the public is not allowed to see the news. This is not acceptable and I -- as a US citizen -- demand that Congress investigate this series of blackouts immediately. Any company involved in this must have their FCC license pulled too. Karl Rove may be gone from office, but he clearly is not gone from power. So long as his buddy, George W. Bush, continues to occupy the White House -- what used to be a symbol of how a nation could both be governed and be free -- we will continue toward abuse after imperial, no Soviet, abuse against us. That too is unacceptable.
Contact Congress now, non-stop, and demand a full investigation into what caused this selective blackout. You can find your member's contact information here. If no investigation happens ... If no one in Congress responds, then you will know finally and fully the ugly truth: we are no longer a democracy . And if we are no longer a democracy, then presidential election can fix the problem, because something that no longer exists cannot be fixed. Sadly, at that point, the only path left to us is the one I most abhor.
We are now being told that it was a technical issue with CBS in New York:
We apologize that you missed the first segment of 60 Minutes tonight featuring "The Prosecution of Don Siegelman."
It was a techincal(sic) problem with CBS out of New York. We are working with them right now to see if we can re-broadcast the segment.
Please be patient with us during this time. We are doing our best to correct the problem.
Excuse me? Are they trying to tell us that a glitch in New York ONLY happened in Alabama -- which is the topic of the 60 Minutes broadcast -- and ONLY during the Don Siegelman segment? Are you kidding me? We have selective prosecution and now we have selective news delivery?
I have written an article at Raw Story about this now. I am hoping that other news outlets give this issue adequate attention. Harper's and Raw Story should not be the only news outlets carrying this story.
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