Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Wrath of a One-Breasted Woman, Bereft of Advice

You think a mother Grizzly is bad? Watch out.

For I am a One-Breasted Woman. An Amazon who sacrifices her breast for a higher purpose. One who refuses to wear a phony bag or strange, surgically-implanted, tissue to make a facade of symmetry -for my real symmetry had to shift. And out of that shift poured the determination to live more fully, say what I know, and shed light on lies and hypocrisy.

Since my mastectomy, I have written a book of poetry/monologues on my breast cancer experience called One, A Perfect Imbalance, and Strides: Lessons I Learned While Riding Horses (both unpublished), I have returned to theatre after a 26-year gap, and appeared on many stages inUtah (including The Vagina Monologues and Nickel and Dimed, based on the Barbara Ehrenreich book), I have written the Know Bush emails, eventually circulating to an address list of almost 5,000 and beyond, and wrote and performed on stage Know Bush: Launching Facts That Shock and Awe, A One Person Patriot Act, both in 2004; I have created a website where I've posted more articles, and I've become a "Trusted Author" at I have gone to New York City twice, and I have seen 6 Broadway shows. I have even seen my daughter onstage, dancing and singing, on the stage with the freshly-Tony-awarded revival cast of Hair.

This daughter, who was five when the breast cancer was diagnosed, is now 18, and is brilliant, compassionate, and inspired by my bold, outspoken ways.

I have lived life more vitally. For me, the breast was certainly worth it.

So I am furious at the discussions I've heard this week about mammograms. How dare they tell us to endanger the lives of women in their forties! What about the repercussions on their children?! They make it sound like the anxiety of false positives isn't worth it. But they offer NOTHING! They've even taken away self-examination.

Even while we live in a world that's been further contaminated by such carelessness and lies as the filth from mountaintop-removal sludge, overpopulated livestock production and slaughter,cell phoneradiowaves, nuclear waste, and vaporized depleted uranium particles from military strikes eternally circulating through air currents, water and soil. . .

The dangers of cancer are cancer are increasing, even when we are blind to it, and we must be able to respond, to detect it, and stop it from striking the vital organs. I have always said that breast cancer should be easy. It's a sack outside the main frame and can be removed, taking the cancer with it. But now they are limiting our ability to detect it. They offer no solutions. It makes me snarl.

In an effort to make sense of this – for my friends, for my daughter (who now bears the weight of family history) and stepdaughters - I sought out the advice of someone I trusted, someone who also forced me to rethink mammograms: Devra Davis, the Director of the Center for Environmental Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and author of The Secret History of the War on Cancer.

Dear Dr. Davis:

According to my Google search, you have not yet posted a response to the recent announcement about the recommendations for mammograms.

In 1997, at the age of 45, I found a large lump that had suddenly appeared on my left breast. A mammogram followed, as well as an ultrasound, and a lumpectomy. There was calcification in the ducts and the surgeon could get no clean margins. I found a woman oncologist at the University of Utah, who took a great deal of time with me to explain things, and with my only a child, my daughter, only 5 years old, I went ahead and had the recommended mastectomy. While the 12 lymph nodes they removed were clean, it was found that the ducts had been breeched and the cancer was no longer just "in situ", so I also underwent chemotherapy. Again I returned to the woman oncologist, as the young male doctor that I was assigned bluntly told me I had to have heavy-duty chemo with a port and the hair loss, etc. The woman, Dr. Sondra Buys, now at the Huntsman Cancer Institute (still U of U), took an hour with me and carefully wrote down 4 options, narrowed it to 2, and let me choose, then affirmed she would have made the same decision. I stayed with her and got a lighter chemo, one that was much safer for my heart, and without the hair loss.

There has been no reoccurrence, and my daughter is now a student herself at the University of Utah, while I have done so much more with my life since then than I may have done without the urgency the cancer-scare brought to my life.

Meanwhile, I have had two friends die of breast cancer that was found while they were in their forties, and another whose breast cancer has metastasized, with a tumor now growing on her spine.

Naturally, I have believed that I am alive because we stopped the cancer in an early stage.

So I spent years encouraging mammograms and pointing out the statistic I'd read that 75% of breast cancer victims do not have it running in the family.

Then I read your book. I stopped encouraging mammograms because of what you said about the radiation. I also stopped talking about breast cancer. I didn't know what to say.

Then came the announcements this week. They made me angry -- because so little was said about the radiation being the legitimate reason to cut back, and so much was said about the anxiety of false positives, and the impracticality of only saving one life for every 1900 mammograms. And nothing was said about the devastation of children losing their mothers. Nor did I hear discussion about educating the public more about the risk factors other than family history (like alcohol useor carrying extra weight), or what other options there might be (and I listen to NPR almost all day at my job).

I did hear that health insurance companies might use this as a way to stop paying for mammograms. I also heard Democratic Senator Dick Durbin say that this was a panel put together by the Bush administration (and I am extremely aware of the deadly dismissing and/or censoring of scientific evidence done by Bush/Cheney and the corporate lobbyists brought in to wreak havoc throughout federal agencies, and have written about it myself), implying the timing of the release was chosen to further frighten the public and Congress about health care reform.

So, Dr. Davis, I am turning to you. As I Googled, I looked for other options for detecting early breast cancer, and I discovered that just days before the USPSTF recommendations were announced, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute revealed a new breast cancer screening device, called SoftVue, which uses sonic signals, rather than radiation, and is supposed to be more accurate, less expensive, and, most important, less invasive, than current technology.

Is this the solution? I looked in the index of your book for the two doctors mentioned in the announcement, Ann G. Schwartz, and Peter J. Littrup, but they weren't there.

What are women supposed to do?

Thank you so much for your work and courageous writing and public statements. I look forward to your response.

Barbara Bellows-TerraNova

Meanwhile, until I get a reply, dear readers, ASK QUESTIONS. I will return to this when I know more.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Adding My Voice

Years ago I knew a woman in the process of liberation, exploding with a joy for a grander life than once she'd imagined.

In one of our conversations, she introduced me to a dance school in which children learned to go inside themselves to understand what and how to express themselves. It was, perhaps, one of the most significant conversations I've had in the last 18 years, for that brought an excellance of magnificent artistry into our lives.

She also gave my newborn daughter an Irish blessing.

Then I didn't see her again.

Until Facebook. Now I find I can count on her to pay attention and speak with that same explosion of spirit.

So, when she identifies me, "tags" me, in a note she's posted, I know to pay attention.

So I read her "Using the National Organization for Marriage To Promote Marriage Equality" and jumped right in.

Take a couple of minutes to do something to further marriage equality!

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is the organization that did that "storm is coming" ad that aired on TV ( which tried to show how same-sex marriage would destroy society and civilization as we know it. NOM is also under review as being funded by the LDS (Mormon) Church.

Right now on their website they are running a petition called Two Million For Marriage in which they're asking Congress: Don't Mess With DOMA. As you all know, DOMA is what keeps same sex couples (even couples legally wed in the 6 states that allow same-sex marriage) from receiving federal recognition, benefits, protections and rights. The Right is afraid that when DOMA falls that all state laws and constitutional ammendments banning same-sex marriage will fall as well. So this petition is going out to the writer's Senators and Representatives, Rep Nancy Pelosi, Senator Harry Reid, and President Obama asking them not NOT support any efforts to repeal DOMA.

We should hijack their petition and alter it to ask our Representatives, Senators, Pelosi, Ried and Obama to SUPPORT ending DOMA! Feel free to edit their letter yourself. Below I pasted my version of the letter.

The petition is located at:

And I went to that petition, and edited their letter (original below my version) and came up with the following:

July 29, 2009
To: Nancy Pelosi, Harry M. Reid, Barack Obama, Your Federal Senator(s), Your Federal Representative(s)
From: Barbara Bellows-TerraNova

I am writing today because I wanted to be sure that you heard from the tens of millions of Americans who firmly believe that marriage should be recognized as a commitment of union between two loving people, regardless of gender.

Too often, we have been silent, ignoring the damage done to our gay friends and family members by the narrow-minded intolerance of those who are irrationally threatened by people they don't understand, who have gone beyond human decency to attack a legitimate minority population. Today, I am writing to strongly urge you to encourage you to oppose the misbegotten federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Thirteen years ago, Congress panicked, seeing the increasing fervency of the religious right, and betrayed American citizens when they adopted DOMA, and President Clinton, in one of his many hypocritical moves, signed it into law, allowing states to rule according to petty local religious prejudices to use their power to enforce their cruelty, heartlessly rejecting relationships that often demonstrated more commitment and integrity than the officially sanctified marriages, where domestic abuse, psychological cruelty, sexism, lying and cheating have created a society in which, ironically, more Americans are lefting desperately needing the kind of federal assistance these same people frequently vote against.

This is simply common sense, recognizing the legitimacy of love and commitment shared over decades between partners who deserve to have their relationships sanctified by the state on an equal basis with heterosexual couples.

I urge you to strongly stand up for human rights and oppose the illegitimate federal Defense of Marriage Act. Our country and families are in the midst of crisis -- in the financial markets, in education, in health care. Now, of all times, let the healing begin!

As the late, "most trusted" Walter Cronkite wrote in his column, "The Marriage Debacle", published February 26, 2004:

"There are many of us Christians who recall our Sunday-school teachers and later our ministers dwelling upon the sympathy and respect -- indeed, the tolerance -- for others that, they taught, was basic to our Christian religion. As the prophet Isaiah summed up this need for tolerance: 'Come, let us reason together.'

"We who believe this are compelled to ask: Where is the tolerance, where is the Christian spirit in the effort to criminalize the personal choices of our fellow citizens, personal choices that do not physically threaten others? Where is the Christian tolerance in the conceit of those Christian leaders who dare suggest that they alone can be trusted to properly interpret the lessons of their Bible, and who would impose that belief on this nation's highly diverse peoples by threatening to throw them in jail if they don't agree with the CCR's version of God's wishes?

"Besides wishing to criminalize individual behavior, the more radical members of the Christian right would like their proposed federal law to dictate what individual churches could do in regard to recognizing or performing same-sex marriages. This is another abomination. Shouldn't that decision be made by the individual church or denomination? What possible excuse is there for government intervention in this decision except an unreasonable, unchristian intolerance for freedom of worship?

"Where is the Christian tolerance in those right-wing Christian leaders who would impose their religious beliefs on the entire diverse population of the United States, even to the extent of a Constitutional amendment curtailing our rights of religious freedom?

"As the CCR leadership presses this matter, which they depict as a moral issue, they threaten a religious war that will split our nation at a time in our lives when unity would be helpful in attacking far more critical problems on which the future of our nation depends -- our foreign policy, the economy, education, medical care and the environment, to name a few.

"In the difficult days ahead, the tolerant among us -- Republican, Democratic or Independent, Christian, Muslim, Jewish or nonbeliever -- are going to have to try to preach another morality, and that is the morality of tolerance."

Sincerely, Barbara Bellows-TerraNova

Gotta love Facebook for reviving friendships that bring out the best in us.

* * *

Their original (NOT MY THINKING):

Subject: Don’t let Massachusetts force same sex marriage on the whole country.

I am writing today because I wanted to be sure that you heard from the tens of millions of Americans who firmly believe that marriage can only be the union of a husband and wife.

Too often, we remain silent, watching events in Washington from a distance. Today, I am writing to urge you to oppose any effort to repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Just thirteen years ago, Congress overwhelmingly adopted DOMA, and President Clinton signed it into law, protecting the rights of states to enforce their own marriage laws, and not allowing four judges in one small state to force their views on same-sex marriage upon the entire nation.

Forty-four states have now adopted laws re-affirming the definition of marriage as the union of a husband and wife. Out of thirty states where a constitutional amendment on marriage has gone to the people, the amendment has passed all 30 times, usually by overwhelming margins.

This is simply common sense, not bigotry, recognizing the shared wisdom of humanity across all cultural, religious, and ethnic lines. Marriage connects a child to both her mom and her dad, giving her the birthright of love and support from her own parents that every child deserves.

I urge you to strongly oppose any bill that would repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act. Our country and families are in the midst of crisis -- in the financial markets, in education, in health care. Now, of all times, don't mess with marriage!

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Faith Ringgold's "Freedom of Speech"

As seen and photographed on June 9th, 2009 at the Metropolitan Art Museum in NYC.

From the Met's website:

Since the 1960s, Ringgold, an ardent feminist and political activist, has used her art to address gender and racial problems in America and Europe, from a personal, sometimes autobiographical, human level. Her naive, folksy style makes these works visually approachable, while her frequent use of written texts within the works makes their often biting social commentary eminently clear. Periodically, Ringgold has employed the image of the American flag, a powerful symbol of freedom and democracy, to challenge current injustices.

In Freedom of Speech, the artist interprets the meaning of the U.S. Constitution's Bill of Rights as it applies to the civil rights of all people. Across the red stripes of the flag are the words of the First Amendment (ratified in 1791) protecting freedom of speech, the right to religious practice, peaceable assembly, and lawful redress of grievances. In opposition to these noble ideals, however, Ringgold writes an array of names and words over the white stripes and stars that reference serious breaches of these freedoms. Painted in October 1990, Freedom of Speech was commissioned by the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia as a poster design for an exhibition commemorating the 200th anniversary of the Bill of Rights, which was celebrated in 1991.

This 4th of July, I honor the best intentions and dreams that are expressed in the Declaration of Independence, and continue in the Constitution and Bill of Rights, as "We, the People" evolve.

But I also continue to be aware of those who have used their power for greed, not principles, and I promise to pay attention and not be silent.

Thus am I patriotic.

Friday, June 26, 2009

CSPAN Video: 06/26/09 National Press Club Conference on Bush "Justice" Dept Political Misconduct

At last! A televised conference at the National Press Club on the "HIDDEN AGENDA" behind the law-twisting and justice-thwarting policies and actions of the Bush/Cheney/Rove Department of Justice.

Thanks to NYU Media professor, author, and voting integrity activist Mark Crispin Miller forwarding this link and message from Marilyn Noyes:

Judge Clemmons, Scott Horton, Charles Walker Jr. (OUTSTANDING!!!), and many others talking about the egregious misconduct of the Bush DOJ. It's long, but what so much of this is what we've been wanting to hear for so long.

Call Eric Holder and demand justice for Don Siegelman, Paul Minor and the other political targets of the last administration's Justice Department. It's time to disinfect the department and exonerate those righteous individuals who have suffered so much.

Attorney General Eric Holder (202) 514-2001; fax: (202) 307-6777; E-mail:

* * *

David Swanson, of, was at the National Press Club, and has posted his notes here, pointing out highlights to find in this lengthy video.

* * *

Earlier today, I received the following info from Mark via his most excellent "News from the Underground" email:

Major Forum June 26 On Selective DoJ Prosecution To Feature Victims & Advocates On June 26 In DC

WASHINGTON, DC, June 25, 2009 - An unprecedented conference June 26 at the National Press Club about misconduct by the U.S. Department of Justice will feature prominent officials as well as victims whose compelling stories were captured by filmmaker John McTiernan in his recent documentary, "The Political Prosecutions of Karl Rove."

The video by Project Save Justice features experts who say that federal prosecutors targeted hundreds of defendants around the nation primarily for political reasons.

The scheduled keynote speaker, House business permitting, is U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, Jr (D-MI), whose committee is preparing to interview former White House strategist Karl Rove following a nearly two-year legal battle to force Rove's cooperation. The Committee's majority staff issued a report last year citing evidence of politics in investigations. Elected Democrats were seven times more likely to be investigated than GOP officials, according to a leading study.

Calling for more Congressional oversight and community action across the U.S. Friday will be Charles "Champ" Walker, son of the former Georgia State Sen. Majority Leader Charles Walker. Since 2005 the elder Walker has been serving a 10-year term on corruption charges. Last month, the elder Walker won recusal of his 2005 federal trial judge for appearance of bias.

Retired Chief U.S. District Judge U.W. Clemon of Birmingham will discuss at Friday's forum his recent letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder saying that former Alabama Gov. Don. Siegelman's first trial was "unfounded." Investigative reports by Alabama journalist Roger Shuler this week documented further questions about the fairness of Siegelman's second trial.

Law professor and Harper's columnist Scott Horton will present new evidence of scandal involving U.S. attorneys fired during the Bush administrations. Also, he will also suggest why the government's misconduct in the recently dismissed conviction of GOP Sen. Ted Stevens (AK) was political.

Department of Justice leaders have been invited to respond but have not designated a representative. In general, they have maintained that their prosecutions were mostly in compliance with legal standards and ethics.

The victim stories by McTiernan portray a different story, including accounts of orchestrated leaks to the press of damaging information by prosecutors and collusion by friendly judges to secure convictions against designated targets. Among the video subjects speaking at Friday's conference will be former Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Oliver E. Diaz, Jr. and Puerto Rico State Senator & Minority Whip Eduardo Bhatia (D), representing former Gov. Anibal Acivedo. Both Diaz and Acivedo were acquitted following highly publicized DoJ corruption investigations that affected the politics of their regions. McTiernan was accused in 2006 of lying to an FBI agent who called his home regarding Hollywood investigator Anthony Pellicano.

"The lid is coming off deep, dark secrets," says John Edward Hurley, a former staff aide to the late White House correspondent Sarah McClendon. "This is an opportunity to learn about some of the nation's most important and controversial recent investigations of official corruption." The McClendon Group, a speaker society, is host for the event. There is no registration fee. Sponsors include Alliance for Justice, Project Save Justice, and Velvet Revolution US.

"This conference is vital to acquainting the public with DOJ misconduct," comments Pace University law professor Bennett Gershman, author of the definitive book, "Prosecutorial Misconduct." ##


8:00 a.m. Introduction. John Edward Hurley, President, Sarah McClendon Group

8:10 a.m. National Overview & Agenda for the Day. Andrew Kreig, journalist, author & attorney Scott Horton, Harper's Columnist, Attorney and Hofstra Visiting Professor of Law

8:30 a.m. View from Congress. U.S. Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Chair, House Judiciary Committee, or Committee Counsel Elliot Mintzberg if a vote is occurring
Nan Aron, President, Legal Director, Alliance for Justice, Introduction

9 a.m. View from the Bench. Hon. U.W. Clemon, Shareholder, White, Arnold & Dowd, former Chief U.S. District Judge, Alabama's Northern District (1981-2009)

9:30 a.m. National Plan for Community Action. Charles "Champ" Walker, Jr., business executive and son of imprisoned former George State Sen. Majority Leader Charles Walker, Sr., owner of the Walker Group and Augusta Focus newspaper.

9:45 a.m. Report Card On Legal, Congressional and Media Oversight of the Justice Department. Scott Horton, Harper's Columnist, Attorney and Hofstra Visiting Professor of Law
TBA Representative, U.S. Department of Justice (Invited)
Bruce Fein, author of "Constitutional Peril," and former Reagan Administration Associate General Counsel of the Justice Department and General Counsel of Federal Communications Commission
Bill Yeomans, Legal Director, Alliance for Justice
Cliff Arnebeck, Chair, Legal Affairs Committee, Common Cause Ohio, National Co-Chair, Alliance for Democracy and 2004 Ohio election voting litigation expert
Andrew Kreig, author, attorney and journalist

10:25 a.m. Faces of the Accused. Former Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Oliver E. Diaz, Jr., acquitted
Puerto Rico State Senator & Minority Whip Eduardo Bhatia (D), representing former Gov. Anibal Acivedo, acquitted
Gail Sistrunk, Executive Director, Project Save Justice (Producers of the video, "Political Prosecutions of Karl Rove")

11 a.m. Forum Adjourns

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Manhood Exposed and Pathetic

What are we seeing?!

Clinton was very frustrating -- a demonstration of how an intelligent, dedicated politician is still run by his penis. What was most annoying about him was the bizarre concurrent behavior - not stepping away from his job for a moment to handle the cheat - the not-unusual obnoxious extra testosterone that seems to be part of the same character that has the drive and ability to reach the highest office.

Besides, I always knew he was set up. Duh, everyone knew his weakness before he even hit the White House. That meant the GOP could use that weakness to push their own agenda, and later be able to share responsibility/blame with the Democrats for the "unintended consequences" they caused -- to muddle the defining of the problem.

Thus under Clinton:

There was a major shift in banking/mortgage accountability with the repeal of the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act.

Depleted uranium was in the tips of the bombs dropped by Clinton in the N.A.T.O. raids on Kosovo and Bosnia (and Europe was infuriated as they saw their cancer rates explode).

The welfare system was irresponsibly and punitively strangled, making it much more difficult for generations of women to rise above poverty (and thus rippling more stress and less education and possibilities into the lives of their children and their children and their children).

So, who knows at what point the GOP had Clinton by the balls. One time only, I heard on a major broadcast station, that Monica Lewinsky had first worked for some Republican in the Senate Office Building and when she couldn’t keep quiet about her desire for the President, she was suddenly transferred to the White House. Of course.

Men are such sell-outs for risky sex

So, of course, we have since had to go through the inevitable (and kharmic) exposure, so to speak, of Republican and Religious Right hypocrites – with Congressional pages, in airport bathrooms, in the Department of the Interior, with staffer’s wives – by those who have tried to gain power by claiming to hold higher “moral values.”

For me, the great disappointment was John Edwards. At that point, I clearly saw that men are powerless sellouts. If Edwards, whose sincere desire to change the system that left so many so poor felt so true, can be felled by an affair, anyone can.

Please note: Shame on that woman. How could she possibly rationalize encouraging or allowing such a relationship if she believed in anything he worked towards, when such a connection would surely destroy his ability to achieve his goals.

Now, Sanford blames it on Maria in Argentina. Come on, what is this? West Side Story -- or Evita?

As I commented early today at Huffington Post,

“Don’t cry for cheating with Argentinian...” (Where is Patti Lupone when you need her?)

But seriously, I’m so tired of the lies, the greed, the toxins, the job losses, the wars – all of which come from this out-of-control, testosterone-driven, alpha male need to be in charge, no matter the “collateral damage.”

Sanford has no right to return to the Governor’s Office. He selfishly and irresponsibly turned his personal inadequacies, his inability to uphold his commitments as a husband and father, into a national security risk, disregarding the commitments of his office as well.

What an irony that he didn’t want his state to accept federal money, when his disappearance and failure to empower the lieutenant governor could very well have resulted in a more urgent need for federal assistance and perhaps even intervention if there had been an emergency.

As the infamous and brilliant Geurilla Girls have often suggested, it just may be time to break out the estrogen bombs!

Sorry, guys, but today, I must say it.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

The Most Important Thing Barack Obama Said in Cairo

There's one rule that lies at the heart of every religion -- that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us.

This truth transcends nations and peoples -- a belief that isn't new; that isn't black or white or brown; that isn't Christian or Muslim or Jew. It's a belief that pulsed in the cradle of civilization, and that still beats in the hearts of billions around the world. It's a faith in other people, and it's what brought me here today.

We have the power to make the world we seek, but only if we have the courage to make a new beginning, keeping in mind what has been written.

The Holy Koran tells us: "O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another."

The Talmud tells us: "The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace."

The Holy Bible tells us: "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God."

The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God's vision. Now that must be our work here on Earth.

Barack Obama, June 4, 2009, Cairo

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Light Beginning to Shine on Bush SEC's attack on Mark Cuban

The Inspector General of the Security and Exchange Commission is at work, and one of its investigations shows misconduct in the way the SEC went after Mark Cuban before Bush left office.

I commented at The Huffington Post:

2004: James Moore, co-author of Bush's Brain (about Rove), goes on book tour with retired Texas Air National Guard Lt. Col Bill Burkett, who witnessed the scrubbing of W's military records to hide history of belligerence, favoritism and and time AWOL before 2000 election.

Burkett is contacted and given memos by mysterious source who then disappears.

Burkett does nothing with memos until GOP uses Swiftboat lies against Kerry, then contacts 60 Minutes II producer Mary Mapes, who co-broke Abu Gharab (with Seymour Hersh).

The instant Dan Rather airs memos, GOP operatives start powerful blitz on memo authenticity, and successfully strangle/punish Dan Rather (who had nailed Poppy Bush with Iran Contra questions in 1988 Presidential election interview), Mary Mapes (Abu Gharab producer), Lt. Col. Bill Burkett (witness to scrubbing), and, indirectly, James Moore.

Rather & Mapes lose jobs, all lose credibility, Bush/Rove silence media and steal a second election.

Mark Cuban courageously backs Dan Rather's investigative reporting on HDNet. Comcast refuses to carry HDNet.

2006: Rather busts open story on Sequoia 's special intentionally-flawed ballots for Palm Beach Florida 2000 election. Undoubtedly much more, but not freely accessed.

2008: Bush's SEC goes after Mark Cuban (Rather's funding) on trumped up charges.

But now there's a break in the clouds. Here comes the sun. . .

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Huntsman’s abandoning Utah Sticks Us with What He Didn’t Want to Notice

Since 2005, advocates for fair elections with all votes counted have been trying to get Jon Huntsman’s attention, but he has always deferred to the Lt. Governor, the designated executive director of Utah Elections. Huntsman, who appeared to be a Governor of both courage and conscience when he stood up against the Divine Strake Test and in favor of Civil Unions for gays, nonetheless, kept his eyes above and his nose clean when it came to the issue of his Lt. Governor and the hackable Diebold Voting Machines we are stuck with in Utah.

While others concerns about Lt. Governor Herbert becoming Utah's governor are focused on his conservative views, the failure to even discuss Herbert's most bullying policy -- because most people are blind to it -- shows how successful the man is at misinforming and intimidating at the most important levels.

It's this simple: Lt. Governor Gary Herbert is the one person who unilaterally decided, against the advice of computer science experts, to purchase the Diebold Touch Screen Voting Machines for the State of Utah, to comply with the 2005 Help America Vote Act (HAVA), the law primarily authored by the since-imprisoned Congressman Bob Ney, under the influence of the $275,000 in funds Diebold paid in 2005 to the since-jailed-lobbyist Jack Abramoff’s company.

When Bruce Funk, the veteran Emery County Clerk, received the Diebold machines for his county and dutifully performed the “acceptance testing”, he found absurdly elementary defects that could wreak havoc on an election day: crooked paper feeds, open memory card bays, flimsy parts that got stuck or loose. A closer look brought the discovery of inexplicable anomalies in the memory cards.

A responsible election official for over twenty years, Funk had paid attention to issues of the reliability and security of these machines. He read in December 2005, Finnish computer security expert Harri Hursti and Dr. Herbert Thompson of Security Innovations, Inc. had demonstrated for Leon County, Florida election Ion Sanchez the hackability of the Diebold Optical Scan voting machines which could change election outcomes (see HBO’s documentary, Hacking Democracy, October 2006). That same day, the CEO of Diebold, who’d infamously pledged to secure Ohio for George Bush in a 2003 memo, suddenly resigned.

So, when Funk couldn't get sensible answers to his questions about the memory cards from Diebold, he contacted Bev Harris at, who had arranged for the demonstration in Florida. In March 2006, Harri Hursti and Dr. Thompson from Security Innovations Inc. came to Utah to address the Bruce’s questions.

After examining two Diebold touch screen machines, documented on videotape, and a second series of testing by both Hursti and Security Innovations, Hursti explained to Funk that in addition to simplistic design flaws that presented electrical safety hazards, the machines’ architectural design included two critical security holes which enabled hacking and then efficiently covered up evidence of the hacking. Hursti’s written report was released on May 6, 2006.

But Bruce Funk didn’t wait for the report. On March 23, 2006, he courageously announced that security experts had found dangerous security flaw in the Diebold Voting machines and so he would not use the machines in Emery County.

Diebold immediately claimed their warranty contract had been violated and that it was fining Emery County $40,000 to recertify the two examined machines. Michael Cragun, Lt. Governor Herbert’s Utah Election Director, immediately ordered the locks changed on the room in which the machines were stored, so Funk was barred access to them.

Cragun quickly arranged a special closed-door meeting with the Emery County commissioners, and on March 27th flew to Emery County with the Lt. Governor’s Chief of Staff, Joe Demma, legal counsel from the Utah Attorney General’s office, and the sales rep and a technician from Diebold. Neither Funk nor the public could attend. After the meeting, Funk was ordered to use the Diebold machines, period. A comment from Funk made in frustration was taken as an irrevocable resignation and the courageous election official, himself an elected officer, was locked out.

The Lt. Governor’s Office thus intimidated Utah’s election officials and personnel into compliance and silence, regardless of what problems are witnessed.
While Thad Hall from the University of Utah, with ties to the voting machine industry, argues down concerns reported in the national media about the hackability of electronic voting machines, the Utah Elections website, part of the Lieutenant Governor’s website, eliminated the word “Diebold” even before Diebold renamed itself Premiere Election Systems.
At this point, Diebold has been decertified in multiple states across the country, most notably in California, after the Secretary of State conducted an intensive multi-level testing of the machines, and found Diebold to be not only hackable, but uncooperative. In March of this year, Diebold/Premiere admitted that flaws in their machines’ audit system could result in undetectable deleted votes.

Meanwhile, Lt. Governor Herbert had most recently been in the news, before the announcement of Huntsman ambassadorship, as being unwilling to enforce the new Utah campaign contribution reporting law. He’s protecting the lobbyists – not the voters.

With Herbert in charge, the Governor’s Commission on Strengthening Utah’s Democracy, announced by Huntsman in January, will continue to keep Utahns unaware and docile. Jon, if only you’d noticed. . .

Saturday, January 17, 2009

A Legacy Review: My Original 40 Know Bush Facts from 2004, in Four Parts


Original Content at

January 13, 2009

A Legacy Review: My Original 40 Know Bush Facts from 2004, Part I.

By Barbara Bellows-TerraNova,

In gratitude for the end of the Bush era (still knowing there is an immense amount of work ahead to undo what can be undone), I am moved to post here, over the next few days, the original 40 Know Bush Facts written and sent out as emails from January to October, 2004, to an increasing number of addresses. My last Know Bush Fact went out to almost 5,000 people.

In addition, in October 2004, I presented Know Bush: Launching Facts that Shock and Awe, A One Person Patriot Act, at various stage venues in Salt Lake City, available for viewing here.

It started with Al Franken and Molly Ivins. After reading their books, Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right and Bushwhacked: Life in George W. Bush’s America in the fall of 2003, I wanted to shout what I’d learned from the rooftops. Then, at the beginning of January 2004, I saw Robert Kane Pappas’ documentary, Orwell Rolls in His Grave , at the Slamdance Film Festival, featuring Greg Palast, Mark Crispin Miller, Charles Lewis and more, and revealing the ugly machinations of Michael Powell (Colin Powell’s son) at the FCC, selling out journalism and the truth.

It became clear that I had to do what I had to do.

If I, a working mother, using Google to learn more about what was behind the news, could come up with this information, even though the mainstream press did not, then why did we have to suffer through four more years?

Apparently because not enough people at the time were willing to consider the reality of deception permeating the White House – AND we weren’t prepared for the machinations of Karl Rove, the RNC, and a more thorough election theft.

Granted, if we’d gotten Kerry in 2004, then we wouldn’t have had Obama in 2008. But there are many whose suffering since 2004 can hardly be explained away with an "It all works out in the end" rationale.

We must not make this mistake again.

Meanwhile, here are the first 15 Know Bush Facts, originally sent January 25th to March 17th, 2004. Each one went out with the heading, "Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free."

This is what we all should have been openly discussing before the November 2004 vote.

To read the rest of Part I. . .

And this is the way to Part II, Part III, and the FINALE, Part IV.

The more we know, the better we choose.

From what we learn, we can better define what we need from this new administration.

Happy Inauguration Day, and breathe deeply.

Barbara Bellows-TerraNova

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


This is an important message that I need to share with you. I noticed that you have endorsed The Peace Alliance and/or the U.S. Department of Peace and Nonviolence Campaign. I am wondering if you would be willing to help? Please consider forwarding this email to your friends, organizations you know and also posting it on websites you visit.

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Make sure the BLUE VOTE BUTTON next to the title has turned to a RED VOTED BUTTON in order for your vote to be counted.

Other -"Appoint Secretary of Peace in Department of Peace and Nonviolence".

Government Reform - Nonviolent Communication in the Government

Make sure the BLUE VOTE BUTTON next to the title has turned to a RED VOTED BUTTON in order for your vote to be counted.

We need your online support by spreading the link below in anticipation of the 10 day run off. I wanted to see if you could quickly vote for this idea.

Would you be willing to share the website link in an email to friends, groups you know, blog it, bulletin it or post the widgety thing on your website??

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Thank You!!

Ana Campos
South Florida State Organizer
U.S. Campaign for a Department of Peace and Nonviolence
Phone: (954) 793-3279

National Website:

This is the GROUP PAGE for the U.S. Department of Peace and Nonviolence Campaign