Happy Friday Night News Dump

Dear George Bush:

Thank you for giving this son of immigrants the opportunity to deprive brown people of their right to vote. I’m just sorry I won’t have the opportunity to do so during the 2008 election.



I’m sorry. That’s not exactly what Han von Spakovsky said in his letter withdrawing from consideration for FEC. He did mention being the son of immigrants:

The day that I was sworn in as a Commissioner in January of 2006 was almost exactly 55 years to the day from the date that my parents arrived in the United States as penniless war refugees. It says a great deal about what a wonderful country we live in that a first-generation son of immigrants could be appointed by the President to such a post of public service.

And he did boast about his service in the Civil Rights Division of DOJ.

I am very proud of the work that I did as a career lawyer at the Department of Justice, which has been validated by numerous federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court.

Spakovsky must have forgotten the "sometimes" in that last sentence, as he was also reversed by those same courts.

Mostly, though, this letter is all about victimization–his victimization, not those whose votes or civil rights he ignored. He explains as his reason for withdrawing that his family does "not have the financial resources to continue to wait until this matter is resolved" (which I’m frankly fairly sympathetic to). No mention of Mitch McConnell’s refusal to let Spakovsky get an upperdown vote of his very own, without yoking him to other, more palatable nominees. To hear Spakovsky tell it, he was due this nomination, and unfair mean opposition ruined it for him.

That’s a stance that Harry Reid does not agree with, to say the least.

I welcome the President’s decision to withdraw the controversial nomination of Mr. von Spakovsky. It is an action I have repeatedly urged the President to take for more than six months. Democrats stood united in their opposition to von Spakovsky because of his long and well-documented history of working to suppress the rights of minorities and the elderly to vote. He was not qualified to hold any position of trust in our government.

As I understand it, the Senate has a Rules Committee hearing scheduled for Wednesday, at which they will be prepared to discuss the three other nominees. I’m trying to clarify whether that means Commissioner Mason–the guy who said McCain was breaking his own damn campaign finance law–will be ousted, but it seems to be. (In fact, I think one of the people they’ve nominated is Donald McGahn, a former DeLay lawyer also involved on the edges of the NRCC scandal–so we may be trading racially biased policies for outright corruption.) I will update you when I figure out more.

116 replies
  1. freepatriot says:

    oh, and why was I forbidden access to your blog for the past few hours ???

    what have you guys been doing in here ???

    you didn’t clean the place up or anything, did you ???

    on the off chance you did, I have NO IDEA who put those french fries in the couch

    (BMAZ did it, wink, wink)

    seriously, I thought I was banned or something

    you know I got a fragile ego n stuff

    so fix yer tubes, so I don’t have a mental melt down here (even though it would probably be fun to watch)

    • sanandreasfaults says:

      That happened to me also. My fear of being expelled was scareing me to death. Who could I turn to for help, to explain how the evil workings of the criminals in this administration pulled what levers?

      • bobschacht says:

        That happened to me also. My fear of being expelled was scareing me to death. Who could I turn to for help, to explain how the evil workings of the criminals in this administration pulled what levers?

        That’s when it is good to be with other Firepups on Facebook.

        Firepups Anonymous.
        Step 1. “We admitted we were powerless over the toobz – that our lives had become unmanageable.”

        Step2. “Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”.

        Um, you take it from there.

        Bob in HI

        • dosido says:


          I still cannot access David N’s post on FDL.

          bush’s comments in israel basically inferring that Obama throws like a girl is a lot like Condi’s remarks about Al-Sadr. I mean, is war mongering the only definition of manhood these jerks have? I’m so sick of it. Now McCain is saying Obama wishes we didn’t have enemies. Jaysus.

          They all talk in terms that compensate for lack of true manhood if you know what I’m sayin’.

          • PetePierce says:

            This is very basic but it just might work. Try clearing your cache/or temperary internet files on a Windows box or clear cache in Safari and then restart your browser.

        • Margot says:

          Step 3. Cheetos will fix almost anything. Then you drink a glass of wine to chase away the transfats.;)

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Hey, watch those transfats, freep ;-))
      Reminder from your friendly, health-nut scold: ketchup is not a vegetable ;-))

  2. selise says:

    looks like you are right, hearing is wednesday and mcgahn is on the list:

    Committee on Rules and Administration

    Wednesday, May 21, 2008
    2:00 p.m.
    SR-301, Russell Senate Office Building

    Nominations of Cynthia L. Bauerly, Caroline C. Hunter, and Donald F. McGahn to be members of the Federal Election Commission

  3. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    He explains as his reason for withdrawing that his family does “not have the financial resources to continue to wait until this matter is resolved” (which I’m frankly fairly sympathetic to).

    Hmmmmm… in a year when:
    ** Eliot Spitzer was almost certainly set up because he was revealing the CheneyBush efforts to take away state oversight for mortgage banking, and
    ** fraud at Bear Stearns to the tune of $32 b-b-billion is being bailed out by taxpayer dollars, and
    ** the Iraq Vets are receiving needed medical assistance, and…

    He helped enable and implement a system that dehumanizes people and tells them they are worthless. I’ll save my sympathy for the people who try to empower others

    His fate is between him and whoever he prays to.

  4. JThomason says:

    OT. Saying that the “appeasement” statement made in Israel was not directed at Obama is like saying that by attributing the intelligence in the 16 words to the British, greater scrutiny was inferred. Both are classic GWB bait and switch ploys designed to conceal his true intentions. Thats how he communicates. And those that communicate similarly get the message.

    • PetePierce says:

      OT and I don’t want to contribute to veering this thread off because there is a lot of irony in Hans von Spec having a career devoted to depriving people of their civil rights and voting rights, and invoking his immigrant parents as if he is buoyed by the freedom he has been lucky enough to have while doing his utmost to take it from others.

      I can’t predict the legs of a particular item that well and news cycle dynamics are unpredictable for me, but on a lot of levels this was a ridiculous blunder by Bush and McCain continues to step in it when he tries to talk about Hamass consistently conflating things Obama or any Democrat has ever said about them.

      This is not to mention the many videos of McCain flip flopping on virtually every issue including engaging in talks with the enemy.

      We all know that this was a metaphorical and consummately stupid move by Bush–and actually insults a lot of Jews who understand how ridiculous what Bush did was not to mention on the first level his historical misuse of appeasement and misunderstanding of the history of the period he invoked.

  5. TomJ says:

    Anyone suspect that Bush/McCain thought that Hillary would join them in attacking Obama over the ‘direct talks to crazy leaders’ issue?

    If she had, that would have really been a success for McCain.

  6. BoxTurtle says:

    This is excellent. However, it seems very important to BushCo’s plans to have a Spakovsky on the FEC. So I worry why they conceeded now and whom they will suggest to replace him.

    Boxturtle (Does McBush really need an FEC quorum that badly?)

  7. JThomason says:

    My experience in dealing with unbalanced adversaries directly is that it avails one of insight into the nature of the disturbance. Otherwise one is left to discern what one can about another in one’s own reflection.

  8. LS says:

    “In fact, I think one of the people they’ve nominated is Donald McGahn, a former DeLay lawyer also involved on the edges of the NRCC scandal–so we may be trading racially biased policies for outright corruption.”


  9. dmac says:

    dmac May 16th, 2008 at 5:39 pm


    and i don’t like the ’lost in the ozone again’ posts on fdl………i can’t count the times we are in a post, and there is another post, but it’s not another fdl post, it’s behind, and yet it’s a post…….so, you get caught up in the post, but there’s another post on that site………which post is a post. and you can’t find your way out of it unless someone says ’another post’………..find another way to do it or you’ve lost me.

    adhd can’t handle it.


  10. dmac says:

    spakovsky–you made your bed, you’ lie’ in it

    that’s as far as my compassion goes in his case.

  11. Loo Hoo. says:

    Lordy. Chris Matthews just said he didn’t like the term Homeland Security. Progress…

    • Waccamaw says:

      Wish/hope it could be described as “progress” but after watching waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more tweety than is healthy for anyone, I’m more inclined to chalk it up to his seeing the handwritin’ on the wall and pulling in his right-wing horns in self-preservation come next year. Doesn’t matter that he occasionally sees the light, the guy will forever be a grade A @sshole.

      eg @ 40 –

      Same response to you as well; long time no see, darlin’.

      • Loo Hoo. says:

        I’m sure it’s all about following Keith and pretending he’s leading. But…he was brilliant last night with *KEVIN***!

  12. LS says:

    Heh, heh. Tweety doesn’t like the term, “Homeland”…thinks it’s being used for “bad purposes”…

    So….where the heck have you been for the past 7 years!!!?????

    • PetePierce says:

      Maybe I was in a for/under a rock but I don’t remember the word homeland being bandied about ridiculously in the US ever, except when I was asked to read Ibsen in high school–by Ibsen in the plays.

        • PetePierce says:

          I’m sure psychologists or linguists/semantic experts have words for the bullshit of the term “homeland” metastasizing but the main objective by Bush and whoever the idiots were that named DHS was to be formulaic and to invoke fear pure.

          When it became rapidly ridiculous that the words “Homeland Security” quickly became an oxymoron because the agency was incompetent and dysfunctional, the term became all the more absurd.

  13. Oilfieldguy says:

    Hans is a six-month rest ring for turd blossoms permanent Republican majority.

    Friday evening dump indeed.

    Sorry to be so graphic folks.

  14. Oilfieldguy says:

    In unrelated news, Bush “jawbones” King Abdullah in an effort to lower the price of oil. Abdullah responds, “I feel like a philistine over here, getting beat by the jawbone of an ass. Oy.”

          • Hugh says:

            This is standard Saudi doubletalk

            Saudi Arabia reiterated it would pump as much oil as needed to meed demand from customers, but said this was unlikely to lead to any drop in fuel prices in the United States, a US official said on Friday.

            For now, the world’s top oil exporter sees no unmet demand for its oil, the official said.

          • Oilfieldguy says:

            Why increase supply when there is no need?

            For now, the world’s top oil exporter sees no unmet demand for its oil, the official said.

            From the article you linked to.

    • Dearie says:

      How do you say, “Fuck off, Bush Boy” in Arabic? Is there anything…..even one thing….that JerkInChief has accomplished during his layover in our house?

    • Eureka Springs says:

      I’ve noticed he crosses his arms while talking on camera lately.. as he did during the beginning of his chat with Rachel. Not sure what to make of it.

      • SouthernDragon says:

        That’s a defensive posture, normally seen when one is uncomfortable in the company of something or someone they consider threatening in some manner.

    • TeddySanFran says:

      I think Tweety joins us in fearing a war on Iran. He has helped stop the march to a third front, in my view. There’s not much else he’s good for, but on this one, he’s done good.

      • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

        Matthews put me totally over the edge a few months ago, but TPM had a video today of his exposure of a complete fraud yesterday, plus this today…?

        Good. I’ve always cut CM extra slack because I think he got righteously pissed (as he should have) when Rove told him that Plame was ‘fair game’.

        OilFieldGuy, good to read your humor again.

        • Loo Hoo. says:

          Tweets has also been really good about calling the administration out on Iran warmongering.

  15. dmac says:

    oh crap–i’m about tuckerd out…….which things should be addressed next week?

    i’m game, tell me……….

    i spent all week sending them out……….got answers back, i’m at a loss, which things matter most? the list is so long……….

    got chevron and burma addressed on the diane rehm show, thanks to fdl. (and a friend from across the state heard my name and called me, hadn[’t heard from her in a long time)

    and the top three lobbyist campaign people representing dictatorships, on mccain’s bus….brought up on national radio, finally…..thanks to what i learned on fdl.

    after they only addressed craig shipley in the first hour, i wrote back and in the second hour they addressed it.

    so, tell me, what needs attacked next……i am at a loss……i was ready to give in this week. and the producers wrote back……….so, tell me, what do we want?

    there are so many things, pick one…….i will be glad to address it.

    tell me.

    i was just thinking about watching blue thunder, missing, romero, the killing fields, uncommon valor, and what those movies did to me……..

    tell me. i will be glad to address it.

  16. LS says:

    Huckabee apologized for suggesting that Obama tripped over a chair and fell down because he saw a gunman pointing a gun at him….so everything’s fine, and per MSNBC pundits…he should still be considered as a VP prospect.


  17. SouthernDragon says:

    To hear Spakovsky tell it, he was due this nomination, and unfair mean opposition ruined it for him.

    Typical Rethug ailment, Entitlement Disease.


  18. LS says:

    Let’s see….Bush accuses “some” of appeasing terrorists….a “delusional somethingerother”…but….

    16 of 19 “hijackers” that attacked the US were Saudi Arabian….so what does W do??? Well, he “appeases” the Saudis by helping them set up nuclear energy…this, one of the most oil rich nations in the world…needs nuclear “energy”…meanwhile….W threatens to attack Iran for pursuing peaceful nuclear energy…

    But…W…appeases the Saudis, because he wants them to produce more oil…

    Ain’t it grand?


    • Loo Hoo. says:

      I want to know if Bush can supply SA with nuclear power before he leaves office. This is not a fly-by-night proposition. It takes time, planning, and materials. Has he already begun this process without involving congress?

      • LS says:

        I think it’s BS myself…probably actual “nukes”. SA doesn’t need nuke power really. Of course he would deal with them without telling Congress…he has all along.

  19. Hugh says:

    BTW there is a new GAO report out that says current government spending is unsustainable. It looks at two scenarios and concludes that some combination of revenue increase or spending decrease to the tune of 17-36% beginning now would be needed to close the deficit gap.


  20. marksb says:

    Well since the Dem leadership seems to have suddenly located their spine in the last few days, maybe we can see some intelligence and fortitude at the hearing?

  21. dmac says:

    thanks matthew, matewan, seen it at least 29 times, i couldnt’ remember the name of the movie the other night to use as an example of christy report that the guy/reporter who supposedly flew into charleston and into mingo county to report how west virginians are.; that he used matewan and google to compile his report.

    i said he watched the movie and used google images to fill in his report.


    and i ’m not a guy—-a ’dame’, or a ’chick’, or a ’girl’…….or just me……..or a woman. who thinks naral outta be shoved where the sun don’t shine………..obama had many ’no-votes’ in the illinois legislature that were never acknowledged or explained…that is what bothers me about him…said he would vote yay and had a no-vote….never explained, i think that outta matter. …..it matters to me……naral did many other things where they dropped the ball this past year–especially legistlature and supreme court rulings they chose to ignore…….so, kinda cool here on the obama bus, and has been from last year until this is explained………

  22. CTuttle says:

    Sorry, I linked ya to the wrong article… Al Jazeera had the report… and it also touches on Marcy’s earlier post on civilian nukes for Saudi Arabia, and it points out 300,000 barrels, not 350,000, as I mentioned earlier…! My Bad…!

  23. JohnLopresti says:

    I think ew has a good instinct on the vonSpakovsky issue, seeming more up to date than a commentary in PublicCitizen last week which provides a parliamentarian view of what decoupling vonSpakovsky would accomplish for Republicans, namely: by approving enough for a new FEC quorum but not enough for a full membership, Republicans retain a two vote constituency on FEC which could stymie any Democratic initiative. There is another factor Republicans are beginning to examine with respect to DoJ’s disabled section 5 oversight, namely a recent argument of a case at Scotus in which the Ch.Justice showed* his voter suppression colors clearly, badgering an attorney with threats to rollback the preclearance** rule to apply only to conditions before it became law in 1964, transcript.
    *Link is to document abstract, full view behind paywall, but the Scotus transcript is free, argument was March 24, 2008 Riley v Kennedy 07-77.
    **Preclearance is the obligatory hand-holding when states with discriminatory histories try to shift legal constructs: they have to go to DoJ for prior scrutiny.

  24. dmac says:

    can we finally come out about issues?

    i wanna know obama’s votes on abortion. i already know them, do you? they aren’t so good if you’re pro-choice.

    i wanna know his votes on equal marriage under the law. not so good.

    i wanna know his views on israel, they have NOT been aired…….i wanna know. oh wait, they have, have you heard what he said about it?

    i wanna know his views on energy00he supports coal. HE SUPPORTS COAL. big.

    i wanna know his views on import taxes, that submarining manufacturing that is left here, he has dodged all of that.

    i wanna know his views on corporate subsidies, he has dodged that , too. said he took no corporate money, but never said he won’t allow those…….hmmmmmmmm.

    i wanna know a lot of things that aren’t being addressed.

    i don’t care about ’hope’ i care what ’hoping’ can do to me, like hoping for a boyfriend that likes my best friend instead……

    wake up. tell me the truth……

    • PetePierce says:

      i wanna know a lot of things that aren’t being addressed

      Obamma has addressed them but you haven’t been specific.

      The fact that you’re uniformly wrong across the board makes me wonder if you’re trolling from a right wing blog. You’re definition of your mistatements is as vague and uninformed as Chamblis, Graham, and Corynyn when they say the surge is working but offer no facts to butress that fiction. You remind me of the guy Mathews sliced yesterday who didn’t konw what appeasment meant.

      If you wanted to know Obama’s or anyone else’s “view on issues” reading would have been a good start and you haven’t.

      Obama was supported by NARAL after 30 years backing the Clintons because he is pro-choice. His so-called present votes in the Illinois Senate which have been misconstrued and widely quoted were on request by many planned parenthood and child protective groups.

      Obama supports civil unions and is against gay marriage. I personally don’t carry who marries what as long as they are the age of consent or the age of the state requirement for licensure.

      His views on Israel have been aired and they are very clear and he supports Israel strongly and recognizes it as our staunchest ally in the ME and one of our staunchest allies period. They’ve been aired out the wazoo and where were you during his speech and question answer period for about an hour and a half today–under which rock? Why didn’t you state them?

      Your assertion that “he supports coal big” is totally false.

      Corporate subsidies for what precisely?

      He hasn’t dodged anything, and has made his views on trade crystal clear. He has been crystal clear on supporting US products and jobs and cracking down on outsourcing of jobs, and products and cheap labor abroad including unequal tariffs with the US vs. other countries.

    • PetePierce says:

      wake up. tell me the truth……

      I would point out as to your false charge that Obama’s dodging questions that every day now for the last few weeks, and for months of his campaign, Obama has taken questions from his audiences including press and all comers. There are no plants, and many of the questions are set up to be tough (some of them from Mccainistas) and he answers them rather easily never using notes. Yesterday morning he took questions for over an hour in South Dakota after giving a sharp crisp response dissecting the absurd comments of Bush and McCain that showed their ignorance of the events that were a prelude to the Holocaust. During those events, the President of the U.S. Franklin D. Roosevelt ignored the extermination of Jews, but was jolted awake when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. That event seemed to be a bit of a wake up call for FDR, the US and the many many businesses who had enterprises with Hitler started by US entrepreneurs long ago.

      Bush and McCain, the opponents Obama is running against routinely have dodged questions and Obama’s primary opponent Hillary Clinton has begun to sharply criticize Bush (and of course she has done it before) but she has been quick in the last few days to call Bush on his outrageous statements from the Israeli Kenneset.

      I have talked to scores of Jews since those statements and they find Bush’s reference to appeasement and his ignorance of history repulsive, particularly for a man who was so afraid of serving his country that when his daddy’s efforts to get him into the National Guard to train for a plane that would never go out of the st’
      ates or see combat ran out, and he was ordered to report for a physical for a plane that that was seeing action in Viet Nam, he hid out AWOL in Alabama in a coke/booze stupor for months, and had the papers destroyed later.

      Dan Rather has a current law suit and the portion of discovery that will shed light on these circumstances is still intact in that case, although the claims against Monves, Redstone, and Heyward were dismissed 4/10/08.

  25. LabDancer says:

    National security.









    The most significant & potentially transformative presidential election:

    [a]since formation of the dimensions comprising this physical universe
    [b]in the history of humans
    [c]since the dawn of the western democratic self-government
    [d]in the history of the US of A
    [e]since Lincoln busted Douglas
    [f]since a desperate nation empowered a guy who couldn’t walk
    [g]since a complacent nation empowered a B movie actor
    [h]since the electoral college deferred to the SCOTUS
    [i]since the SCOTUS ceased upholding the rule of law
    [j]Wednesday in northern Mississipi.

    Even the semi-fossilized ‘dumptive champion of the GOOP is the situs of a desperate struggle between Tod und Verklärung.

    To paraphrase Bill Shatner: Don’t you just love transformation?

    Ain’t it just like spring for EVERY old thing to get new again?

    Jeebus – We all know what she is, but maybe it’s only decent for someone to warn Cindy aka “you c**t” how all this excitement tends to effect the old McCarpetbagger …nah; she should know from personal experience. And I’m not going to lose any sleep over it. Now if I can only get it out of my head how similar all this looks to just before the 1925 election to the Weimar Republic.

  26. Mr.Cbl says:

    EW –

    fyi – Phillipe Sands has written an essay for the Moyers site – wanted you, Christy, and LHP to have it

    Bill just announced it on air – so there is a temp connection issue

    but here ya go

  27. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Donald McGahn’s record is as bad as von Spakovsky’s. With Mason out, and McGahn in, it’s worse than just adding von Spakovksy. Typical Bush, one step back, two forward, ever to the right.

    Except, oh, wait, the Senate gets to decide whether to allow that. Why should it, now that the FEC has been sidelined this long? Over to you, Harry…

    • bmaz says:

      The key isn’t what he was sentenced to, it is what is done with him in that regard. Where does he serve it; what are the parameters, and what does it really entail? Will Special K really be in the designated facility? Or will he be in a protection program setup and you don’t know about it? Trust me, if it is the latter, you will never know about it. I have seen this done, and I am a nobody. TK, simply by getting as far as he has, the way he has, is operating at a different level than is commonly understood or contemplated. Skepticism is warranted. I have no idea or personal knowledge on any of this, but I have never known of, nor heard of of, anybody that has played the system/gig quite the way Tommy K has, in the face of all logic and rationality. This pattern of behavior by TK, and by his handlers, is pretty telling. Look at what has happened in the past and where TK has, irrespective of the facts and circumstances, gone. Are you sure he is, in the future, going where you think he is?

  28. kspena says:

    OT This is an intriguing comment from a translation of an Iraqi online conversation:

    May 14, 2008 Roads to Iraq

    “The most important reaction came from Hammad al-Shrida because he is a very interesting character, worked at first days of Iraq invasion as Chalabi’s assistant, to leave Chalabi later asking asylum in Norway releasing a video and an audio tapes with confessions about Chalabi’s dirty role in the invasion, the man is an information mine:

    When I was close to Chalabi…he studied al-Sadr trend giving all the information to the Americans and pretending that it is his own movement (militia)…Chalabi was telling the Americans that he holds the strings that moves the Mahdi Army….his men were attacking banks pretending to be you [MA] even they were Kurds.

    Chalabi tried to assassinates Muqtada, to take over the Mahdi Army as the next leader because he lacked popularity in Iraq, he sent Muqtada a Mercedes car, a transmitter hidden in the car to sends Muqtada’s location to the American airplanes, but al-Sadr revealed the plan and started to push Chalabi away from him.

    Orders came later from Iran to Badr Brigades and Dawa Party, to allow their members to join Mahdi Army as tribal groups, not as individuals to start the sectarian war.”


  29. Leen says:

    You are on fire Ew. Jesus Mary and Joseph! How many lobbyist does it take to get McCain selected?

  30. dmac says:

    epu’d but finally came out of the bomb shelter—\

    matthew at 96–city of hope is good, or ’being a dick’ all good…..someone on the radio the other day called me ’lady liberty’, cracked me up at first but then later it made me think about what i try to project…….and i guess that’s what i do try to project, so it made me have a moment of pride…….that i quickly erased…..wish there was a way to just do things and not have that enter in………to just let it be about honesty.

    and the obama crap–i wanna be able to answer questions from people honestly, and honestly, i can’ t find the info i brought up earlier anywhere in his info……no specifics anywhere……..

    except for his no-votes in the illinois legislature for women’s rights, those are for sure on record.
    the rest is allegory gathered and assimilated, doesn’t mean a whole lot. all i know is, when he had to stand for women’s rights he didn’t………that kinda matters to me. and naral backed him with that weak shit??????????

    pete you said obama has addressed the issues i raised but i haven’t been specific? i was very specific, he hasn’t been. i’m analytical, i watch for details….this i know. the things i raised are nowhere on the web, nor on his website, that doesn’t bother anyone?

    so, i say blooooooooooo haw………..that’s how much i’ve heard…….a strong wind, no words heard above the din. rhetoric given as an answer to a question that wanted specifics……..not so specific pete.

    and matthew–calling a woman a ’dick’ in my book is funny…..and i’m not a fan of ’crude’…….

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