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Just how far out on the fringe do you need to be to be publicly disowned by... Keith Olbermann... Democratic Underground...BlackBoxVoting.com...?
Apparently not far enough for HBO which is dedicating the week before the election to Harris and her discredited "Black Box" conspiracy theories. And not far enough for MSNBC which today booked Harris to discuss electronic voting with Norah O'Donnell as she promotes her upcoming HBO Documentary Hacking Democracy:
In 2002, Seattle grandmother and writer Bev Harris asked officials in her county why they had acquired electronic touch screen systems for their elections. Unsatisfied with their explanation, she set out to learn about electronic voting machines on her own.
Got that? She's just a humble little "Seattle grandmother". Of course, long time OlbermannWatch readers will recall that it was Harris who led the vote fraud conspiracy ring championed by Keith Olbermann in the wake of John Kerry's loss in the 2004 Presidential Election - the far-left wacko who quickly wore out her welcome with her vitriolic, over the top rants and embarrassing stunts and was eventually shunned by the OlbyLoons, DUmmies and BlackBoxers.
Here are a few Bev Harris highlights from 2004...
Reminder - We are NOT affiliated with Bev Harris
Ms. Harris threatened us [Democratic Underground] with a libel lawsuit, claiming that we could be held responsible for comments made by other message board members who doubted the credibility of her project. She never followed through on this threat and we never heard from her lawyers.
...leading to a "civil war" in the DU forums.
Keith Olbermann publicly disavowed Bev Harris on Bloggerman after weeks of negotating to air video Harris claiming to show original voting tapes discarded in the trash in Florida by the Palm Beach County elections office which never materialized. Keith wrote:
I have heretofore been convinced that she had credentials sufficient to make an interview segment with her both useful and reasonable...My ample gut has lately sent me a different message, and her showdown with Palm Beach County Elections Supervisor Theresa LePore on Monday seemed to buttress my instinct. She burst into LePore's retirement ceremony, her cameraman rolling tape as she did so, and she raced to the podium to announce to the shocked room full of supervisors that she was "serving" LePore with papers as part of her lawsuits over what she claims are LePore's evasions in providing records of the 2004 vote.
In what now seems a prescient statement, Olbermann adds:
What Ms. Harris has left herself open to is a charge that as much as any interest she has in the justifiable public concern over our most precious right - the right to a reliable, honest election - she may also have an interest in making her own documentary, on her own schedule, for her own purposes (emphasis added).
What Ms. Harris has also left herself - and by extension anybody who is advocating investigation, or merely covering the story - open to, is the charge of grandstanding, of tin-foil hatting, of being somebody who bursts in to a room and screams at public officials, videotape running all the time, artificially creating news.
Bev Harris was involved with both Votergate and Hacking Democracy. If someone wants to do a comparison, I'd be interested to know if there are any further connections between the two "documentaries" other than Bev Harris participating in both, her efforts on behalf of Votergate and now doing TV appearances to promote the HBO production. Are both using footage of Bev Harris stunts? Staffing? Financing?
Olbermann's backpedaling on Bev Harris (he had originally booked her to appear on November 8th, 2004, in the first few days after the election) was similiar to backpedaling from David Allen of Plan Nine Publishing who also runs BlackBoxVoting.com. Allen was Bev Harris's publisher. BBV.com, rub by Allen, originally claimed that there was NO connection between BBV.com and Bev Harris (Allen was the connection) but as you can see the BBV.com still contained a web page with a hyerlink to a "Bev Harris" section of the BBV.com site (since removed).
Bev Harris responded to Olbermann by publishing threats, accusations and demands on her web site, changed her mind and took them down, put up a new version and then took that down.
All of this prompted Olbermann to go public again:
[Today, Bev Harris] was so belligerent, threatening, and demanding, that we have chosen to withdraw our invitation to her to appear, or to have videotape of her efforts played, on Countdown. Threats against myself or my staff will not be tolerated.
OlbermannWatch obtained copies of an email exchange purported to be with Olbermann where he goes into greater details as to Bev Harris' behavior.
It was about this time that Bev Harris began to claim that George Bush was reading her book prompting disbelief even among the BlackBoxers.
It was at this point, about a month after the 2004 election, that Olbermann acknowledged just how far off the deep end he had gone in chasing the blackbox crowd:
we remain the only mainstream news organization to continue to cover this vital story...my people...are running professional risks I can't begin to describe
Things finally hit rock bottom when Bev Harris finally made her first appearance on an NBC channel - CNBC. Given her total lack of credibility, even on the fringes of the far left, you will not be surprised who invited her to appear on air [hint: think "scream"]
As you consider this, you might also ask why Bev Harris is out promoting a "documentary" for HBO when she has repeatedly denied being involved in making any films. Her role promoting the film is inexplicable given that she is an interview subject in the film Unless, of course, Olbermann was right all along and that has been orchestrating the production of a propaganda film since 2004.
Dare I say it? Looks like Keith Olbermann was RIGHT for once!