ABC’s Brian Ross, Tea-Party smearer and Anthrax liar … isn’t that the same Brian Ross who… ?


Brian Ross, long-time news anchor at ABC.   I don’t watch ABC much, but there was something familiar about that name, Brian Ross, I thought, when I heard Chris Hayes’ guest conservative mention him Saturday morning.

Apparently soon after Friday’s mass murder in Aurora, Colorado, Brian Ross had jumped the gun, discovered that there was someone with the same name as the shooter in the same town, who was a Tea Partier, and reported that fact breathlessly for some time before being informed it was a different guy.

Well, hey, it made good sense didn’t it?  Tea Partiers – they like their guns and all – why WOULDN’T they shoot dozens of random movie-goers?

The Tea Party was NOT amused, and, being quite capable of looking after themselves in the “Lamestream Media,” they extracted a retraction and apology from ABC pretty quickly.

But still, that name rang a bell – Brian Ross of ABC.

That’s right!  He was the one – as the great Glenn Greenwald has never let us me forget – who repeated for MONTHS in late 2001, during the national terror following 9-11 and the subsequent now-forgotten anthrax-in-the-mail attacks, that it was Iraq’s dictator SADDAM HUSSEIN who was responsible for the anthrax.  And Brian Ross and ABC have never retracted or apologized for that completely false reporting, which was a vital part of scaring us Americans into supporting the stupidest, longest, and most criminal war in our history.


“It is vital to recall how significant the anthrax attacks were in this country, and what a paramount role it played in how Americans viewed the terrorist threat generally and Saddam Hussein specifically. As Atrios has noted many times, the anthrax attacks seem to have been flushed down our collective memory hole, but other than 9/11 itself, that event — and the media’s coverage of it — did more to spawn the next several years of Bush worship and support for his mindless militarism than anything else.”

Yes, it WAS the same Brian Ross.  Both times engaging in hasty, sloppy and destructive “reporting.”  Both times lazily going with the establishment group-think of the day – Teabaggers Are Violent;  and Saddam Hussein Is Threatening America.  Of course he and his network only apologized when they hurt the Teabaggers’ feelings – but who is going to force them to apologize for the much more catastrophic anthrax lies?  Lies which – as Greenwald documents – convinced several influential liberal pundits to reluctantly support Bush’s murderous invasion, leading to a bipartisan snowball effect of jingoism.  (Colin Powell’s 2/5/2002 UN debacle was the frosting on the anthrax cake, but AT LEASTHE HAS APOLOGIZED FOR THAT MISTAKE.)

Maybe Ross has done something good in between 2002 and 2012, I’m sure he has.  But until he retracts and apologizes for the Saddam/anthrax propaganda, he’s on my shit list.


Still.  That wasn’t all.  Brian Ross … Brian Ross … Why does that name ring such an unpleasant bell?

Ah!  That’s right!  I remember when he was arrested in St. Albans, Vermont, for the robbing and assault leading to the death of one Chris Davis:

Five suspects were arrested Thursday as a result of the St. Albans police investigation into the death of Chris Davis, who was found dead in a swimming pool April 16.

None of the suspects are charged with killing Davis, only that they assaulted and robbed him. The developments were hard for Davis’ family and friends to watch from the Franklin County courthouse.

Samamnthajo Assisi was Davis’ girlfriend. She’s also the mother of their two year-old daughter Lillian Grace…who she says looks just like him.

“I feel so bad for her,” Assisi said as she battled back tears.

“That was his everything. He loved that baby so much.”

Four of the five suspects arrested made their appearance in court today. Police say Travis Bugbee and Brian Ross lured Davis to the St. Albans swimming pool on March 21.

Now it’s all coming back!  Brian Ross!  Of Course!  Remember when he got busted for sending explicit photos and text messages to two teenage girls in Fontana?

Explicit photos and text messages to two girls has landed a 37-year-old Mentone man in jail on suspicion of sex-related charges, according to Fontana police and jail records.

Brian John Ross was arrested at 5:35 p.m. Thursday at Sierra and Merrill avenues in Fontana and booked on suspicion of contacting a minor and arranging to meet with a minor via the Internet for the purpose of having sex, jail records show. His bail is $50,000.

On March 13, a 10-year-old Fontana girl received a text message from a man who would later identify himself as a 38-year-old named “Brian,” police said in a written statement.

And as I saw on TV this morning, while researching this story, Brian Ross was ALSO recently for arrested for distributing meth while working at a Nebraska Taco Town restaurant.

Bad news, this Brian Ross cat.  BAD NEWS.


PS.  I had this story planned out since Saturday and told Diamond and Quimby both about it, but was too busy to get it done due to my concert and Anaheim shenanigans.

In the interim, showing that DMSTA (Deranged Minds Sometimes Think Alike)  I see that my research has already been done by both Stephen Colbert and GLENN BECK!  Saving me the trouble of finding crooks named Brian Ross.

But neither of them remembered the Iraq/Anthrax thing, Brian Ross’ biggest sin.  Me, I’ll never forget that.

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official political troubadour of Anaheim and most other OC towns. Regularly makes solo performances, sometimes with his savage-jazz band The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.