I created this website in early
September 2002 because I wanted to be part of the early group of
people in the US who were (somewhat inadvertently) building an
independent, alternative, online (web) source of news and analysis -
which over time came to be known as blogs - to complement the
traditional media in the United States. The objective of this
website was to influence America's traditions of liberty and democracy
in a very positive way - given I have long admired the United States.
When I initially started this website, I decided to focus on important political and socio-economic issues facing the U.S. and
sought to find ways to provide more balance to public and media debates on these issues.
Over a period of years, I experimented and used different approaches
to advance debates and discussion, ranging from the simplest
(opinion pieces) to the more complex (qualitative and quantitative
analysis, long-form essays, investigative reporting/journalism,
subject-matter deep-dives). The experience was remarkably enriching
- both in terms of the learning about the US and world at large, as
well as about public policy, politics, media and driving influence
Needless to say, this
website itself is primitive and functional in design. This was
because my writings and analysis were all in the limited free time I
had outside of work and personal commitments - and that free time
shrunk considerably over the years. In fact, I have not written
anything new/original on this site since circa 2005 - hence, outside
of the home page or this page, this site has NOT been
maintained/updated for the most part of nearly a decade. (So, yes,
the website design sucks but that was never my focus.) After 2004, I
moved the "eriposte" moniker to the well-known left-of-center blog
Left Coaster (TLC) - and I continued to blog there till around
2009 or so, after which my blogging at TLC became minimal to
non-existent. During that period, I also occasionally wrote guest
posts under the "eriposte" name at other sites such as
and UN Dispatch.
I've been gratified at the support, encouragement, and referrals
from many influential people as well as my (often) loyal readers
over the last decade - and I can't thank them enough for it. We've
also had disagreements time to time - some serious, some minor - but
that's part of free speech and democracy and it was another
immensely valuable experience.
A brief note on my
ideological/political leanings - in the interest of disclosure. At
the time I first started writing anything meaningful online (circa
2001/2002), I had never held firm political
leanings and was at best a political novice who was
not anywhere near as informed on history, politics, and policy as I am today.
(So, if you are reading some of my old content today, I guess I'll
ask you to do me a favor and cut me some slack if you find some
obvious naďveté or missteps in my coverage.) I have always considered myself a left-leaning independent
ideologically. My initial reactions to 9/11 led some friends
to wonder if I were a right-leaning conservative. However, the Bush
administration's and assorted GOP politicians' policies and rhetoric
in the years following 9/11 drove me to become a firm
Democratic supporter in those ensuing years. Since 2008, I took a
more independent turn in my political thinking - although I am still
left-leaning broadly speaking. All that said, I believe quite strongly
that balance of powers and an honest, accurate and inquisitive fourth estate
(media) is critical for a properly functioning
constitutionally-liberal democracy (a term borrowed from Fareed Zakaria
- reflecting the balance between liberties and democracy) and would
like to see significant representation of more than one party at all
levels of Government.
If there's one thing that I realized
through my 12+ years of experience in the world of blogging and
journalism - it is that I have a passion for media - and to enable
positive transformations through intelligent, analytical, accurate
journalism and stories. I hope to continue that passion in the years
ahead even if it is just in my free time.
For those of you who are new to this site, I have included below
some comments from other writers/bloggers about my work.
To contact me or to send
your comments/feedback, please email feedback-at-eriposte-dot-com. Civility will be appreciated.
sample of comments about my work from other journalists, writers,
bloggers, media, academics, organizations
FROM AFRICA and VALERIE PLAME EXPOSE
Solomon Hughes in the British magazine Private Eye:
the telegram after a legal appeal, but still blacked out some words,
including a space that appears to refer to two separate deliveries.
There are several more very close matches between the March
telegram and the Niger forgeries, largely ignored by newspapers, but
outlined by American “blog” called “the left coaster”.
Investigative blogger and CIA leak
case expert Marcy Wheeler (aka
Emptywheel) in her great book "Anatomy
of Deceit: How the Bush Administration Used the Media to Sell the
Iraq War and Out a Spy":
As I ﬁnished my
series on Miller’s reporting, I started tracking a
story—obviously leaked—about a memo summarizing the State
Department’s judgment of allegations that Iraq attempted to buy
uranium from Niger. From that point forward, I was hooked, and I
was following the related developments on a near-daily basis.
It was this kind
of sustained attention that has led bloggers to a lot of key
scoops in this case. The most impressive is eRiposte’s
discovery that someone laundered the content of the Niger
forgeries before cabling that content to the CIA.
Marcy Wheeler at The Next Hurrah:
eRiposte at the
Left Coaster has been doing
incredible work piecing together the Niger forgeries. For
those who haven't been following along, I'd like to offer a
quick summary of what he has shown, including:
substantive American and British claims about Iraq acquiring
uranium all relied on the Niger documents
- There are
several pieces of evidence that prove some in the
Administration knew the Niger documents were garbage before
they used them to justify war
- There was
clearly cooperation from someone at SISMI to make the
documents more useful to justify the Niger claim
encourage you to go look through eR's work.
Investigative blogger Josh Marshall (Talkingpointsmemo):
news out of Italy this morning, and news which appears to
confirm a theory advanced recently by a poster at
theleftcoaster.com (big coup for him, about which I'll explain
The report sent over from Italy removed the out-of-date names
(one of the key reasons they were spotted later as forgeries)
and replaced them with the correct names. In other words, there
seems to have been a conscious effort to cover up the fact that
the documents were bogus, to clean them up, as it were.
Perlstein in The New Republic:
Or on the screen.
January 23, the day Carney landed on his own petard, was also,
as it happens, the first day of testimony in the perjury and
obstruction of justice trial of former vice-presidential Chief
of Staff Scooter Libby. And some of the distinguished gentlemen
and gentleladies of the press have seemed none too pleased that
the journalistic pace is being set by the rotating cast of “live
bloggers” at Firedoglake (FDL), who, thanks to a press pass
secured by Arianna Huffington, have been providing a
near-transcript-quality record in real time of the proceedings,
interwoven with contextualization by writers more expert in many
cases than the cable news legal commentators, wrapped up each
afternoon by a video summary.
By phone from her home in Chicago, Christina Siun O’Connell,
FDL’s part-time press secretary (yes, blogs now have press
secretaries; full disclosure: she is also my friend), lists the
names of the team, some of whom write under pseudonyms:
Pachacutec; TRex; Swopa (“Plame geek extraordinaire”);
ERiposte (“who, I think, is male”). The most expert among
them, Marcy Wheeler—a former academic from Ann Arbor whose book
Anatomy of Deceit was published to coincide with the case by a
brand new book imprint, Vaster, established by bloggers (the
book is already in a second printing)—has only recently come out
of the shadows. (She used to be known as “emptywheel.”)
[NOTE: My guest posts at
Firedoglake can be
accessed here - including the
FDL Book Salon / Q&A that I hosted
with Italian investigative journalists Carlo Bonini and Giuseppe
D'Avanzo on their book "Collusion". The same journalists were kind
make a mention of my work, in one of
their pieces in the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, which is
Italy's leading newspapers.]
Investigative reporter Murray Waas in "The United States v. I. Lewis
Libby" (page 574):
Among bloggers my
reporting and knowledge of the case was regularly enlightened by
John Amato of Crooksandliars.com; Jeralyn Merritt of
Talkleft.com; Jane Hamsher, Pachacutec, TRex, Phoenix Woman, and
Christy Hardin Smith at firedoglake.com; Swopa; Joe Gandelman at
the moderatevoice.com; Tom McGuire [sic] at JustOneMinute.com;
Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel at TheNexthurrah.com; Greg Sargent
at several blogs, his most recent home being with TPM media; Jay
Rosen at Press Think; everyone at Dailykos.com; and eriposte
and Steve Soto at theleftcoaster.com
Investigative reporter Murray Waas:
posting on the leftcoaster.com by Eriposte about the forged Niger
documents that led to the Plame affair.
reporter Laura Rozen (War and Piece):
at the Left
Coaster, blogger eRiposte
has an impressively encyclopedic understanding of the ins and outs
of the Niger yellowcake claims, including the troubling question of
why the British government won't climb down from its claim that it
had a second independent source of the discredited claims.
reporter Laura Rozen (War and Piece):
eRiposte has another
find. Not only did Sismi "correct" multiple glaring
flaws in the information from the Niger forgeries it
sent on to the CIA, it appears that the US withheld the
most glaringly fake forgery from the bunch that it
forwarded onto the IAEA. Go
Craig Unger in Vanity Fair:
also mentioned my work in his book "The Fall of the House of
Bush" (Simon & Schuster, 2007).
outlets, including the San Francisco Chronicle, United
Press International, and The American Conservative, as well
as a chorus of bloggers—Daily Kos,
the Left Coaster, and Raw Story
among them—have raised the question of whether Ledeen was involved
with the Niger documents. But none have found any hard evidence.
Ambassador Joseph Wilson on Larry King Live (CNN):
New York City, hello.
CALLER FROM NEW YORK CITY: Ambassador Wilson, any idea who forged
the yellow cake documents and the motivation? These were not third
WILSON: Well, actually Dr. ElBaradei said they were obvious
forgeries and his deputy said that a two hour search on Google would
have told even a novice forensic analyst that they were forgeries.
So, they were not great forgeries, should not have fooled the
intelligence community or the White House for that matter.
I don't -- there has been a series of articles published in the
Italian magazine or the Italian newspaper "La Republica"
just this week. Some of those articles have been (INAUDIBLE) in some
There are a couple of web blogs, particularly Talking Points Memo
and the Left Coaster that have also taken a good look and
done a study into what they think some of the possible sources of
the documents might have been.
Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson in an email to his supporters
As you think about
this, our website (Wilsonsupport.org)
has a copy of the letter I sent to the SSCI when its report
first came out, challenging some of its conclusions.
LeftCoaster has a terrific study by eriposte on the whole
Niger forgery case from beginning to end.
the Next Hurrah both have highly informative analyses of the
case by skilled researchers and former prosecutors. I recommend
them all as resoruces to jog memories.
Libby's testimony seen as 'key to Rove inquiry,'
forgeries finding goes from
Left Coaster to La Repubblica.
Huffington (Huffington Post):
complete list of every White House and GOP mouthpiece lie about Rove
and Wilson, see this great
compilation by eriposte at Left Coaster.
IRAQ'S ALUMINUM TUBES
Prosecutor and U.S. Attorney Elizabeth de la Vega in her book
United States v. George W. Bush et al.:
tubes allegations": For an excellent analysis on this topic, see
Barton Gellman and Walter Pincus, "Depiction of Threat Outgrew
Supporting Evidence," Washington Post (August 10, 2003).
For a detailed chronology see the series by eriposte, "WMDgate:
Fixing Intelligence Around Policy," The Left Coaster,
BUSH ADMINISTRATION'S ILLEGAL DOMESTIC SPYING
Glenn Greenwald (author of
the New York Times
How Would A Patriot Act?):
As is often the case, the discussion of
the NSA law-breaking scandal in the blogosphere has been
infinitely more thorough, informed and informative than in all
of the mainstream newspapers, magazines and television programs
combined. Eriposte at The Left Coaster has posted a
superb compilation of all of the
arguments and evidence marshaled by the blogosphere which negate
each pro-Bush talking point on this issue.
American Life on WBEZ Chicago Public Radio / NPR:
this show, a This American Life Special Report: Vote Fraud.
of election year chicanery appear in the paper every day. TAL
contributor Jack Hitt compiles a list of the most egregious accounts,
double checks the facts, and gives his election eve rundown of the
dirtiest tricks so far.
We've made Jack Hitt's story available as its own RealAudio file;
public service. If you felt like someone tried to interfere with
your right to vote this election, call 866-OUR-VOTE, a special
hotline run by the Election
information about vote fraud is available from the eRiposte
site and from dKosopedia's Voter
Registration Fraud Clearinghouse.
[eRiposte note: A
transcript of the show (with audio) is also available
"Voting Rights Act: Evidence of Continued Need" - Hearing before the
Subcommittee on the Constitution of the Committee of the Judiciary,
House of Representatives, One Hundred Ninth Congress, Second Session,
March 8, 2006 has multiple references to my work at
Vote Watch 2004.
For example, in Volume III, page 3976, in the discussion of Voter
Suppression in Arizona:
were also responsible for misinforming the public with regards
to voting fraud. The most significant of these incidents
occurred when a Fox Television News reporter confronted two
females who had set up a voter registration drive on the
University of Arizona, Tucson, campus.14 The reporter
incorrectly accused them of setting up students to commit
felonies by registering out-of-state students to vote in Arizona
when they were not eligible to do so. 15
Pollitt, Fox Hunting Student Voters, The Nation, Oct. 5, 2004,
[....]; Vote Watch 2004, "Older News: Fox News Reporter
Intimidates Students Registering New Voters in Arizona,
Suggesting They Were Potentially Signing Up Students to Commit
Felonies," available at
Guardian News Blog (U.K.):
Moulitsas (of Dailykos) writing in The Guardian (U.K.):
are several clearing houses of voter suppression and fraud online,
like the Voter
Registration Fraud Clearinghouse and [eRiposte] Vote
Dubner at The American Prospect:
Watch 2004 --
An ever-growing list of news clippings about vote suppression, voter
fraud, voting irregularities, and the like.
Institute for Policy Studies cited the eRiposte
Vote Watch 2004 Ohio page in their
report "Obstacles to a Democratic Election: Reports of Electoral
Problems in Key U.S. States during the 2004 Election"
Black (aka Atrios) at Media Matters for America:
front-page article in the October 27 edition of The Wall
Street Journal, titled "Block
the Vote: As a Final Gambit, Parties Are Trying to Damp Turnout,"
staff reporter John Harwood wrote about the issue of "voter
suppression," creating a false equivalency between Democratic and
Republican efforts to reduce votes for their opponent.
Voter suppression efforts aimed at Democratic and newly registered
voters are not simply about, as Harwood characterized it, making
voting a "hassle." Examples (which are listed on the Vote
Watch 2004 website) include:
Many more examples can be found at Vote2004.eRiposte.Com.
Pais (Spain's leading newspaper) La Jornada Electoral
(Election Day tracker?) mentioned eRiposte Vote Watch 2004.
Michael Froomkin (University of Miami School of Law), Discourse.net:
is your one-stop-shopping site for news about vote/election fraud,
vote suppression, voting irregularities, and voter intimidation in
Lots (far too much for
comfort) stuff here…
The site is
well-organized: you can view news chronologically, or by
red/swing/blue states or by state. Here, for example, is the Florida
electoral vote fraud and suppression page.
Ed Kilgore at The Democratic Strategist [co-founded by Stan
Greenberg, Ruy Teixeira, Bill Galston]:
Eriposte at The Left Coaster takes a stab at answering an
interesting question, "Is
Hillary Clinton a 'Corporate Democrat'"? Eriposte concludes
that front-runner Clinton is less "corporate" than many Dems
might believe, according to her track record.
Eric Boehlert in "Bloggers on the
Bus" (Free Press, 2009), page 128:
knew that [Sen. Hillary] Clinton was never going to be warmly
embraced online, but [he] was shocked by the netroots' treatment of
her in early 2008. Blogging during the campaign at Steve Soto's
site, the Left Coaster, eriposte eventually resorted to sarcastic
headlines to mock what he saw as the all-consuming anti-Clinton
blogosphere: "Hillary Destroys All That is Decent and Pure, Yet
BOAT VETERANS" COVERAGE
Donovan, Miami Herald WeBlog:
Froomkin at Discourse.net
points to several responses to the group, including that of .com,
which has compiled lots and lots of background on Sen. Kerry's service
in Vietnam. The author has something to say, too, that I think
expresses what many feel about these claims...
Brad DeLong (U. C. Berkeley, Economics)
: Swift Boat Veterans for "Truth" v. The Truth
Brian Leiter (School of Law, University of Texas at Austin):
wipes the floor with the "Smear Boat Veterans."
"DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE BANNED" STORY IN CUPERTINO,
actually does some real journalism and takes a look a the materials in
question, discovering that some of them
are actually bogus.
Journalism Review's CJR Daily/Campaign Desk:
exhaustive, albeit lefty-tinged, rundown of the controversy, click here.
Femia ("Clicked") at MSNBC:
Stephen Williams discriminated against because he was a
"Christian"? (This is the continuation of the
Declaration of Independence hoax story we saw last week.)
Sanchez in Reason Online "The True Spirit of Xmas"
It is, of
true: The Declaration appears in the school's standard textbooks and
hangs on classroom walls. The school's principal, rather, insisted on
pre-approving the handouts of a single teacher who had long generated
complaints from parents because he was using his American History
lessons as a pretext from indoctrination—a teacher who, as one
student put it, "talks about Jesus 100 times a day."
Judging by this Easter
assignment and various other handouts
including fabricated quotations from Founding Fathers on the topic of
religion, the concern was well motivated.
Parent from Stevens
Creek Elementary School (Cupertino, CA) and member of group We
The Parents, in
response to an interview question from me about the usefulness of
Did you find the coverage of this issue on blogs useful? If so, do
you think it was less or more useful than the mainstream media
Do you mean the Drudge report or eRiposte? You have to make a
judgment about who you're going to trust, usually on a fairly slim
basis. And whatever the faults of the mainstream media, there's a
lot less editorial control and balance in the blogosphere. I think
it's a tribute to eRiposte that both liberal and conservative
parents found it valuable (though some of the conservatives did
grumble about the ideological slant). But eRiposte was pretty
unusual in this respect.
Group of Funds cites eRiposte as one of their sources in their
Democrats vs. Republicans: The Economic Effect
Drum (formerly of Calpundit
and now at Washington
ANALYSIS....THE REPUBLICANS ARE STEALING OUR MONEY!....The
folks at eRiposte have yet another cheap and cheerful economic
analysis showing that Republicans
are looting strong Democratic controlled states (like California!) and
redistributing our wealth to weaker Republican controlled states.
Do I believe it? Maybe. Then again, maybe it's just a cheap partisan
shot. But if so, at least it's backed up with colorful charts and
[P.S. Kevin joked in his post that I
asked him to post this, but I actually did not and he acknowledged it in
Confessore at The American Prospect:
And at any
rate, history is not kind to Republican stewardship of the economy.
Check out this
wonderful and apparently well-sourced page on eRiposte which
averages Democratic and Republican presidencies on any number of
article titled "THE TROUBLE WITH MIXED MOTIVES - Debating
the Political, Legal, and Moral Dimensions of Intervention" in
the Naval War College Review, Summer/Autumn 2004, Vol. LVII,
No. 3/4, Commander
Susan D. Fink, U. S. Navy, cites the following eRiposte summary:
of Worldwide Support (or Lack of It) for War on Iraq,"
Drum (formerly of Calpundit
and now at Washington
WHAT THE WORLD
THINKS OF WAR....So
what does the rest of the world think of our little war? Thankfully,
there's no need to guess any longer because eRiposte — in its
typical chart-happy style — has laid it all out for us: opinion
polls about the war from France to Albania to India and beyond.
on eRiposte about the mass arrest of immigrants who had responded
to an INS request to come in for some paperwork processing is a must
read. This is bad on many levels, and it deserves to get some harsh
Arnette (Editor, Minority Scientists Network - MiSciNet) in Next Wave
(Science Magazine publication) [via
I take this opportunity
to voice my concerns about the controversial views put forth by Samuel
P. Huntington in "The Hispanic Challenge," published in Foreign
Policy magazine by the Carnegie Endowment for International
Although I don't
agree with many of the views offered in "The Hispanic
Challenge," I'm glad it was written because it sparks debate and
intellectual curiosity. Believe it or not, many people share the same
views even if they don't admit it. The best way to confront the issue
is to put everything on the table and invite rational discussion. To
read other responses to the essay, please see the text box below.
- "Immigration issues in the U.S. Part II: A
Response to Samuel Huntington's ‘The Hispanic Challenge'"
Prof. David D. Perlmutter in
the book "Blog Wars" (Oxford University Press, 2008), page 126:
You can read blogs not just to gauge what's in the
news but also for revelations on the development of news
coverage itself. For example, Eriposte of the Left Coaster blog
created a multipart series that examines the "liberal media
myth." Its installments include "tone" of media coverage,
"catch-phrases" like "right-wing extremist" versus "left-wing
extremist," "newspaper headlines," "topics" covered,
"think-tank" citations, journalist ideology or voting
preferences, public opinion polls on media bias, and
unintentional errors in news reports.19
One post studied the creation of the "'liberal media' myth using
surveys of journalist ideology
or voting preferences." Its
hyperlinks, citations, and references run into the hundreds; it
is a tour de force of both comprehensiveness and succinctness,
worth reading if you care about the bias of the media, right or
left. Whether or not you agree with bloggers, you can still find
value in reading and thinking about and further investigating
their analyses. In the forced marketplace of the classroom, I
ask my students to read Eriposte and "the media are biased to
the left" criticism on good, literate right-wing blogs like
Oxblog and Oh, That Left Wing Media.
Glenn Greenwald at Unclaimed Territory:
part of his superb report on political bias in the national
conclusively documents how this alleged network prohibition
on "controversial political ads" virtually always operates to
suppress political views that are critical of the administration
and its allies.
Neiwert (journalist & blogger at Orcinus):
finished up his great 15-part series, How
the Liberal Media Myth is Created, which recaps information many
of us already knew, but puts it together in a cogent way that offers some
insight into how to battle the meme. He's also begun a follow-up series at
The Left Coaster titled
"Why the Liberal Media Myth Persists", with Part
1 and Part
2 already up.
set up a comprehensive media
Meredith (formerly at Politics,
Law and Autism and at Wampum):
has done an enormous amount of work to post a compilation, in chart form,
of the "myths, lie, deceit, bias, denial or just plain B.S." the
media feeds the public about Democratic leaders including Al Gore, John
Kerry and Bill Clinton. For each such instance, Eriposte identified the
charge, the perpetrator, the victim and the debunker with links to the
The chart is an invaluable resource for anyone writing about media
coverage of Democrats. The chart will undoubtedly grow over time. Send
your examples to Eriposte.
A lot of work went into building the chart. Putting it together was a
public service. Please go see for yourself.
Drum (formerly of Calpundit
and now at Washington
WARMING....ARE CONSERVATIVES EMBRACING POSTMODERN SCIENCE?....Is
global warming real? How can you decide?
If you like graphs
and charts, the
guys at eRiposte have a whole bunch of them here. Read 'em and
IN SCHOOLS AND CHRISTIAN RIGHT
Johnson (of Seeing
Over at eRiposte, go read Fundamentalism
in the United States: A Brief Summary of the Christian Right in the
U.S. Court system ad let others know about it.
Update - In the comments Alice suggests forwarding this to your
local education assn. Good idea. Schools, educators, school boards,
teacher associations... let them know about eRiposte's work.
Femia ("Clicked"), MSNBC:
Left Coaster has a pretty amazing work up of Harriet Miers’ bio.
A. Qasim and Z. Qasim in the Journal of Education and Practice,
2013 "The Role of language in Education: An Analytical Review of
Pakistan’s Education Policy 2009"
refer to this analysis I posted at UN Dispatch (and TLC):
How rural poverty fuels instability in Pakistan. UN Dispatch :
Global Views and News 17th February 2009.
Hywel Coleman in the 2010 British Council report "Teaching and
Learning in Pakistan: The Role of Language in Education" also
refers to the same analysis above.
[The above piece at UN Dispatch was
also referenced in this January 2010 USAID Issue Brief on "LAND
TENURE AND PROPERTY RIGHTS IN PAKISTAN"]