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MARCH 03 2008

1. FCC official wants probe of "60 Minutes" black-out
2. First Monday: The Siegelman Case — A Political Prosecution
Exposed.
3. Going to Jail for Being a Democrat
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FCC official wants probe of "60 Minutes"
black-out
By Peter Kaplan of Reuters

A U.S. Federal Communications Commission official is seeking an
inquiry into the blacking out of a politically charged segment of the
CBS News magazine "60 Minutes" by a local television station in
Alabama.

FCC Commissioner Michael Copps said he had asked the chairman of
the FCC to open an inquiry into the February 24 incident at WHNT, a
CBS affiliate in Huntsville, Alabama, in which civil rights footage from
the 1960s was blacked out.

"The FCC now needs to find out if something analogous is going on
here," Copps said at a luncheon with media watchdog groups. "Was
this an attempt to suppress information on the public airwaves, or was
it really just a technical problem?"

<link to source>
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First Monday: The Siegelman Case — A
Political Prosecution Exposed
By: Scott Horton for Firedog Lake and the Allianace for Justice

...The Significance of the Siegelman Case

On December 7, 2006, Alberto Gonzales fired eight U.S. attorneys for
refusing to implement a program of political prosecutions. Many
observers at that time notes that the case of the eight terminated U.S.
attorneys might ultimately prove far less interesting that the 85 U.S.
attorneys who were retained. The Siegelman case suggests this
approach has merit. The two U.S. attorneys involved here—Alice
Martin and Leura Canary—are Rovian models of politically engaged
prosecutors. As the case continues to be investigated, I believe there
will be a strong focus on them and their ties to the Bush White House.
They both have a tight connection to Karl Rove, through the same
figure, Billy Canary, a man who worked with Rove for 17 years.

But as I have argued in “Vote Machine,” this is but one manifestation
of an overall phenomenon of modification of the Justice Department
for partisan political purposes. The shift in policies and personnel in
the Civil Rights Division, and particularly in the arena of voting rights,
is another clear example. The accelerated hiring of partisan hacks to
fill career positions. The prosecution of “voting fraud” cases
consciously measured to dampen minority turnout at the polls. The
prosecution of political figures and donors associated with Democrats,
with prosecutions timed to overlap with election cycles.

Michael B. Mukasey has promised that this political process will end
on this watch. But there is no evidence so far that he has recognized
the problem or that he has taken any steps to end it.

<link to source>

...................................................................................................................................................Going to
Jail for Being a Democrat: How Alabama Gov. Don
Siegelman Got Roved
By Paul Craig Roberts, CounterPunch of Alternet.

In video documentaries available online, Bailey's friend, Amy Methvin,
says that Bailey told her that he was going to parrot the prosecutors'
line, "pay for play," "quid pro quo." Methvin says Bailey went into a
speech about money exchanged for favors. "You sound like a robot,"
Methvin told him. "You would have it memorized, too, if you had heard
the answers as many times as I have heard the answers," Bailey
replied.

The prosecutors also had help from some jurors. On a WOTM Special
Report hosted by former US Attorney Raymond Johnson, Alabama
lawyer Julian McPhillips produced emails from two jurors about
influencing other jurors in order to achieve a conviction. Jurors are
not supposed to discuss a case outside the court or to consider
information other than what is presented in court and allowed by the
judge. The outside communication among the jurors is sufficient to
declare a mistrial.

<link to source>

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St Valentine was the patron saint
of political prisoners. That
makes Don Siegelman the St.
Valentine of Alabama!
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