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Commission a Fraud
Private Corporation a
Joint Effort Founded by
‘Glorified Press Conference’
Burned by Perot in ‘92,
Two Establishment Parties
Conspire to Fix Rules, Exclude
Other Parties’ Candidates
Commission on Presidential Debates
The first televised presidential debates were between Nixon and Kennedy in 1960 and sponsored by the networks carrying the feed.
Americans had no presidential debate in 1964 because incumbent LBJ refused to debate his challenger, Barry Goldwater.
The black-out continued until 1976 when the League of Women Voters (LWV) became a sponsor for the Carter-Ford debates.
In 1980, President Carter, after sticking a wet finger in the wind and determining political winds had Independent candidate John Anderson – invited to debate by LWV – taking more votes away from him than his challenger, Ronald Reagan, declined to participate in the first of three debates.
The LWV decided to go ahead with the debate despite the president’s absence and 50 million Americans watched Reagan debate
The second schedule presidential debate, along with the only vice presidential debate between Walter Mondale and George Bush, were cancelled.
It wasn’t until the Reagan campaign agreed to Carter’s demand
In the 1984 contest between Reagan and Mondale, from a list of nearly 100 journalists LWV selected from which to choose questioners at the debate, both campaigns disapproved of all but three, leading moderator Barbara Walters to issue a disclaimer at the beginning of the televised event revealing the two campaign’s insistence in controlling who asks questions.
In 1988, the Bush and Dukakis campaigns secretly negotiated a Memorandum of Understanding detailing their demands if either candidate were to participate in a LWV-sponsored debate.
Receiving the document, the LWV responded by issuing a statement that said they “have no intention of becoming an accessory to the hoodwinking of the American public,” adding, “Under these circumstances the League is withdrawing their sponsorship of the presidential debates.”
The League’s refusal to conspire with the Democratic and Republican Parties gave the two organizations the opportunity to conspire among themselves and create the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD). CPD has organized every presidential and vice-presidential debate since 1988.
A private corporation, CPD was founded by then chairmen of the Republican National Committee (RNC) Frank Fahrenkopf, and his counterpart from the opposing party Democratic National Committee chairman Paul Kirk.
CPD solicited sponsorships from the corporate world – the same entities giving large sums of campaign cash to both parties and their candidates.
By 1992, a sponsorship of eleven included AT&T, Atlantic Richfield, Ford Motor Company, IBM, Hallmark, J.P. Morgan and Phillip Morris.
Among the nine debates sponsors in 1996 were Anheuser-Busch, Sprint and Lucent Technologies. The nine Election 2000 debate series sponsors included U.S. Airways and 3Com.
Among the eleven debate sponsors in 2004 were American Airlines, Continental Airlines, JetBlue Airways, and Discovery Channel. The eight Election 2008 sponsors include the International Bottled Water Association and YWCA.
Details of the secret agreements between the GOP and Democratic Party candidates governing debate rules under CPD remained a mystery until they were leaked and published this year in the book No Debate, by George Farah.
Debate contracts since 1996 reveal agreement between the GOP and Democratic nominee on which candidates can participate, who asks the questions, candidates’ rules for questioning or not questioning their opponent, to the height of the podiums, and every detail in between.
“It’s a glorified bipartisan press conference,” explained Farah, author of No Debate, to Bill Moyers in an interview for a PBS documentary on the CPD. “[Candidates] get a question from a moderator they selected and they memorize a response to. They issue the memorized sound bite which fits a very nice, perfect 90 second response lot that has been stipulated in the contract. Their opponent cannot challenge their answer because they’re prohibited by the contract. The moderator can’t challenge their answer because they cannot ask follow-up questions.”
After George Bush Sr. became flustered at the 1992 Town Hall-style debate when answering a question by a citizen on how the national debt has personally affected him, CPD changed the rules again.
At the 1992 event, questioners held the microphone and were permitted to ask for clarification. Under adjusted rules at Town Hall formats after that episode, citizens became prohibited from asking a follow-up question, seek clarification, or engage in extended discussion with the candidates by having the microphone turned-off once they completed their question.
The 1992 debate taught the GOP and Democratic Party the valuable lesson of not inviting a third candidate.
The Bush campaign believed Ross Perot would take more votes away from his challenger Bill Clinton while the
The result was
At the 1996 debates between Clinton and Republican Nominee Bob Dole, neither side believed Perot’s presence would benefit their chances, each side for their own reason –
By the 2000 Election, CPD made another change to marginalize the citizen by requiring them to submit their questions on an index card to the moderator in advance for that person to choose which questions to read.
Also in 2000, the Bush and Gore camps conspired to prevent Pat Buchanan, and Ralph Nader – Nader on the ballot on 43 States – from participating in the debates.
CPD cites minimum standards a candidate must meet to be included in a debate beyond the Constitutional requirement of age, residency and place of birth.
Candidates must also appear on enough State ballots to earn the minimum 270 Electoral votes necessary to mathematically win the Electoral College.
The toughest hurdle for a candidate is meeting a minimum 15% support of the national electorate as determined by relying on CPD-selected national polling organizations.
Candidates not a Republican or Democrat have difficulty reaching this target primarily due to the Mainstream Media’s near-blackout on coverage all things political not Republican or Democrat, preventing these perspectives and solutions from reaching Americans equal to the opinions of the GOP and Democrat politicians.
In Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson’s case, his name has been excluded from many opinion polls, most notably during this year’s Republican Primary Election season. No showing, or a low showing in polls, is the excuse Mainstream Media used to exclude Johnson from all but one GOP primary debate in 2011 and 2012.
The CPD’s shenanigan excluding candidates other than the Republican or Democratic Party nominees has caught up with the private corporation. In protest of not inviting Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson to this year’s debates, CPD for the first time in its 24 year existence lost sponsors - Phillips Electronics, YWCA, and BBH New York.
Mark Stephenson, director of corporate communications for Philips North America, explained, "We respect all points of view and, as a result, want to ensure that Philips doesn't provide even the slightest appearance of supporting partisan politics. As such, no company funds have been or will be used to support the Commission on Presidential Debates."
Can’t Find a -------------
The AV News
When it comes to local print publications our philosophy is, "The More, The Merrier!"
Unfortunately for our advertisers and readers alike, the fine folks down at the AV News apparently do not share this newspaper’s love and admiration for the free marketplace.
Nothing quite like stepping on someone else to make oneself feel taller.
A single copy may do the trick for a week or two. Now that’s economy!
On the business end of things, the employ of this unethical and malicious tactic injures the Right of our paying advertisers to receive full value for their purchase.
Chris took written note and promised to pass the message along to his editor, my dear, old friend from
Along with his deputy - Codename: Kick-Stand - we three shared the privilege and opportunity to become “close” on one particular, special occasion.
Just the facts! I’m sure Mr. Bryant gets my drift.
Most likely you’ll find it atop a stack of The Political Observer.
---------- Building U.N. Coalition to Thwart, ---- Activism, Opportunism --- The Rise of a 21st Century Empire “It can be said that the 21st century cannot be the ‘American century.’ It is not that the Americans do not want it but that it is not possible. This has been proven by the
of Peaceful Multilateralism
as Strategy to
MOSCOW STATE UNIVERSITY: Then-President and current Russian Prime Minister, Vladimir Putin with former Chinese President Jiang Zemin in 2001 while meeting with University
entrants, students and lecturers. Photo published with permission, courtesy: www.kremlin.ru
Building U.N. Coalition to Thwart, ---- Activism, Opportunism --- The Rise of a 21st Century Empire
The Rise of a 21st Century Empire
“It can be said that the 21st century cannot be the ‘American century.’ It is not that the Americans do not want it but that it is not possible. This has been proven by the
-- Former Chinese Vice Premier Qian Qichen
Read between the lines. On April 1, 2001, less than 90 days into a new
Fast forward to early March 2009, less than 60 days into the next new
The following day, March 5, without any notice or warning, also in international waters, a Chinese frigate approached ocean surveillance ship USNS Impeccable and crossed its bow at a range of roughly 100 yards. This event was followed less than two hours later by a Chinese Y-12 aircraft conducting eleven fly-bys of Impeccable at an altitude of 600 feet and a range from 100-300 feet.
As reported on at the time by FOX News, “The frigate then crossed Impeccable's bow yet again, this time at a range of approximately 400-500 yards without rendering courtesy or notice of her intentions.” Two days later, on March 7, a Chinese military intelligence collection ship challenged USNS Impeccable over bridge-to-bridge radio, calling her operations illegal and directing Impeccable to leave the area or “suffer the consequences.”
There is no doubt among political observers that
One of five permanent members of United Nations Security Council empowered with the veto,
A RAND report, commissioned by the United States Air Force, examined
RAND described China as “a global actor of significant and growing importance” involved in regions and issues once peripheral to her interests, such as Latin America and the Middle East, and through its international behavior China has single-handedly altered the dynamics of the current international system.
RAND revealed contemporary Chinese leaders have concluded that the next 15 to 20 years represented a strategic window of opportunity within which
A Multi-Polar World
After the end of the Cold War, Chinese analysts predicted a quick evolution away from a
Such an order was not to be as the
In a 2004 speech given by Qian Qichen, China’s former vice premier and long-time foreign policy doyen (senior member of a group regarded as an authority because of superior knowledge), Qichen said, “The United States wants to engage in unilateralism but cannot dominate the world.”
In a 2008 Chinese defense white paper,
However, Chinese scholars and policymakers argue, multi-polarity is on the rise as U.S. influence diminishes, and cites as evidence the global financial crisis and relative decline of the U.S. economy on the one hand, and international resentment and alienation fostered by the lengthy U.S. intervention in Iraq and our nation’s militaristic prosecution of the global war on terrorism, on the other hand.
A senior Chinese diplomat was quoted by RAND as saying, “The uni-polar hegemonistic strategy of the
Many Chinese scholars now believe a multi-polar world will emerge over the next 20 to 30 years.
The result was shortages in oil, coal, and electricity and prolonged power shortages in many Chinese provinces that created a situation forcing
Demand and reliance on imported crude oil grew from 1.6 millions barrels per day (b/d) in 2001 to 4.1 million b/d in 2007; consumption levels some Chinese leaders projected for their nation not until 2020.
The International Energy Agency projects
Chinese leadership, like the United States, define energy security in terms of two issues: price volatility and security of delivery, in which China feels vulnerable on both fronts, although the Chinese directly benefit from the United States’ commitment to keep sea lanes open and oil moving safely and freely around the globe.
About 90 percent of Chinese oil imports arrive by ocean tanker, which has made
Long a thorn in the side of Chinese prestige is
The strategy to prevent
Examples of Dollar Diplomacy include the construction of a sports stadium in the
According to RAND,
In their 2004 national defense white paper,
According to RAND, Chinese military diplomacy has been successful, for the most part, in reassuring Asian nations of
The content of these exchanges have been limited because of the PLA’s penchant for guarding national defense information and capabilities. However,
Ninety-eight countries have reciprocated and maintain military attaché offices within
In the same three-year period, China sent over 900 military students to over 30 countries while about 4,000 military personnel from more than 130 countries have come to China to study at Chinese military educational institutions.
The export of conventional weapons to a collection of regular customers – Burma, Cambodia, Pakistan, Thailand, Sudan, Algeria, Egypt and Iran – has made China the fifth-largest arms exporter to developing nations, estimated to be valued between $500 million to $1 billion annually.
RAND cautioned that Chinese arms exports (five percent of global market share) are not a major source of political influence, rather, a form of opportunism by China because many buyers lack access to other suppliers, or lack funds to shop for weapons elsewhere.
Chinese conventional weapons are described by RAND as “inexpensive but often unreliable” and RAND stated Chinese arms shipments go to smaller, poorer countries, with the exception of
RAND reports, “
Chinese leaders, since the early 1990s, have articulated three principles to guide their nation’s relations with major powers: non-alliance, non-confrontation, and not directed against any third party. EDITOR’S NOTE: The two incidents reported on at the beginning of this article belie the non-confrontation principle espoused by Chinese leadership.
U.S.-China relations are of paramount importance to Chinese policymakers who have historically treated relations with the
Of equal importance,
Yet, RAND stated,
Since 1996, Chinese and Russian leaders have held annual summit meetings, and Hu Jintao’s first trip abroad as
A second joint exercise involving land forces was conducted inside
At the end of the Cold War, Russia became China’s principal supplier of sophisticated weapons systems that included air defense, advanced jet fighters, destroyers, submarines and supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles and in 2007, Russia became China’s fourth-largest supplier of crude oil imports at nine percent, satisfying a part of China’s desire to receive crude oil delivery overland instead of by sea.
A Chinese assessment declared that “
In the United Nations, Russia and China are two of five permanent members of the Security Council with veto power and RAND reports how the two nations play the United States, “On North Korea nuclear issues at the U.N., China takes the lead, with Russia’s support; and on Iran nuclear issues, Russia takes the lead with support from China. In 2006 and 2007, there was a near 100 percent similarity in Chinese and Russian votes in the UNSC (Security Council), including vetoes.
“As a reflection of their common concern about U.S. power, many Chinese also hope that Russia would be willing to support China in a conflict with the United States over Taiwan; Chinese analysts point to the 2005 joint amphibious exercise as an indication of growing military cooperation, which could be leveraged during a cross-Strait crisis,” RAND reported.
In Central Asia, both
Regardless of the unity of effort between
Although RAND found that most Central Asian states have learned a lesson watching
Despite increased governmental and military ties, there exists low-level social and cultural contact between the peoples of
In 2007, about 40,000 Chinese college students and 80,000 middle school students were learning Russian, while more than 200 million students were learning English. In trade,
In 2007, Russia-Sino bilateral trade reached an all-time high of only $48 billion dollars, compared to $356 billion with the European Union, $302 billion with the
Arms shipments to
Observers need look no further than the United Nations – the center of
During the 2005 debate on
To kill the proposal for Japanese permanent Security Council membership,
The four other occasions where
Also in 1972,
Many Chinese analysts see the U.N. as a mechanism to moderate
For example, according to RAND,
RAND reports, since the Iraq War, “
“This is largely a function of several factors: China’s growing confidence in its own capabilities; its willingness to tolerate negative U.S. reactions and a related view that the United States needs China more than before; Beijing’s perception that the U.S. image and influence were in decline during the Bush administration; its expanding global economic interests; and China’s ability to work with other nations, such as Russia, to avoid isolation in its disagreements with the United States.”
The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council are
Roughly 75 percent of
RAND concluded that “
Rather, on balance,
As a result, to many nations,
Through her diversification – entreaties into Africa, Latin America and the Middle East - China has lessened her reliance on stable and positive relations with a few powers, such as the U.S., and has generated leverage that helps her avoid restraints on her behavior by major powers in the U.N.
RAND concluded that
RAND reports, “A core Chinese objective is to hinder the
This approach is described as “gravitational” rather than confrontational, meaning,
Although RAND described