Wednesday, September 29, 2010

OneNation march plans send Glenn Beck into a Red-baiting frenzy: Marxists are everywhere!

-- by Dave

Hmmm. Gotta wonder if Glenn Beck is worried that his mass self-promotion -- in which he claimed half a million people turned out, when the real number was about 90,000 -- is going to be overshadowed this weekend by the OneNation march being planned in D.C. this weekend.

Because he sure was turning up the volume yesterday:

Beck: Now, I'd love to see the president come out and denounce socialism, Marxists, communists, revolutionaries. Once! Mr. President, once! Deny Marxism, Communism, revolutionaries! Tell us you are against all of this!

Marxism is evil, and the only thing it has contributed to in the history of mankind is mass graves. All of these groups, and the president of the United States, want nothing short of fundamental transformation of America. It is not about cleaning up corruption. It is only a beginning -- a beginning of a radical, revolutionary Marxist land.

Do not allow them to get away with the lies! Do not allow them to say that we are just "one nation, working together". "We're just trying to put America back to work, and putting America back together." These people, a lot of them have fought their entire life to destroy America!

Now I get the guilt by association. If there's a lone wacko in a group that sneaks in, I get it. You happen to be standing next to somebody and they take a picture of them, and they're a whack job, you didn't know that necessarily.

But when you the overwhelming majority of groups organizing this event believe in Marxism, then yes we can, yes we can judge you by the people that you keep company with.

Overwhelming majority? Hell, go to the One Nation website and check out their extraordinarily long list of backers. It includes every major progressive group, including the NAACP and the NEA and the AFL-CIO, as chief sponsors, and a list of dozens of left-leaning groups -- including, indeed, the Socialist and Communist groups that Beck singles out as representative of the entire group. But in fact, they are a tiny minority of the overwhelmingly mainstream organizations at the march.

And yes, your humble correspondent will be there -- just to piss Beck off. More soon.

[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]

The Unbearable Lameness Of James O'Keefe: Attempt To Punk CNN Reporter Is A Final Stupidity

[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]

Breitbart's boy strikes again:
A conservative activist known for making undercover videos plotted to embarrass a CNN correspondent by recording a meeting on hidden cameras aboard a floating "palace of pleasure" and making sexually suggestive comments, e-mails and a planning document show.

James O'Keefe, best known for hitting the community organizing group ACORN with an undercover video sting, hoped to get CNN Investigative Correspondent Abbie Boudreau onto a boat filled with sexually explicit props and then record the session, those documents show.

The plan apparently was thwarted after Boudreau was warned minutes before it was supposed to happen.

"I never intended to become part of the story," Boudreau said. "But things suddenly took a very strange turn."

O'Keefe is best known for making a series of undercover videos inside ACORN offices around the country in 2009. The 40-year-old liberal group was crippled by scandal after O'Keefe and fellow activist Hannah Giles allegedly solicited advice from ACORN workers on setting up a brothel and evading taxes.
We all remember the utter lameness of his attempt to wiretap Mary Landrieu, which blew up in his face. Well, this scheme was even lamer:
CNN was forwarded an e-mail, sent from O'Keefe's e-mail address, to the executive director of Project Veritas, Izzy Santa; and two conservative activists, Ben Wetmore of New Orleans and Jonathon Burns of St. Louis, Missouri, dated after the call with Boudreau.

"Getting Closer," the e-mail states. "Audio attached conversation with Abbie. What do you think of her reaction guys. She said she could do it Monday, Tuesday. Ben, you think I could get her on the boat?"

Boudreau flew to Baltimore, Maryland, on August 17, rented a car, and drove to suburban Lusby, where O'Keefe wanted to meet. O'Keefe sent a text message to Boudreau that morning, saying that Santa would meet her when she got there.

When Boudreau arrived at the address, a house located on a tributary of the Patuxent River, Santa approached her with a tape recorder in her hand and said she wanted to talk in the car, Boudreau said.

"I noticed she had a little bit of dirt on her face, her lip was shaking, she seemed really uncomfortable and I asked her if she was OK," Boudreau said. "The first thing she basically said to me was, 'I'm not recording you, I'm not recording you. Are you recording me?' I said, 'No, I'm not recording you,' and she showed me her digital recorder and it was not recording."

Santa told Boudreau that O'Keefe planned to "punk" her by getting on a boat where hidden cameras were set up. Boudreau said she would not get on the boat and asked Santa why O'Keefe wanted her there.

"Izzy told me that James was going to be dressed up and have strawberries and champagne on the boat, and he was going to hit on me the whole time," Boudreau said.
A short time later, O'Keefe emerged from a boat docked behind the house. In that brief conversation, Boudreau told O'Keefe that he did not have permission to record her, and reminded him that the meeting was solely to discuss the upcoming music video shoot, and he had never mentioned that he wanted to tape their meeting.

Boudreau ended the meeting and left. After the incident, Santa gave CNN a series of e-mails she says shows O'Keefe intended to try to embarrass both the network and Boudreau through an elaborate plan.
The most amazing thing about this is that anyone continues to consider that Andrew Breitbart's pseudo-journalistic propaganda products have even an ounce of credibility. Why exactly was CNN even talking to O'Keefe? That'll teach 'em.

Maybe now is the time to start asking people exactly why ACORN was killed by Congress -- and doing something about it.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

So What If Marc Lamont Hill Has Factual Evidence Of Tea Party Racism? Liberals NEVER Win On Bill O'Reilly's Show

[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]

Bill O'Reilly last week challenged Marc Lamont Hill to come up with evidence of racism within the Tea Parties. So this week, Hill returned and plopped the evidence right in front of him.

Guess what? It didn't matter. O'Reilly tried countering with specious nonsense -- claiming, for instance, that "we don't know" who actually is putting up those racist signs at Tea Party rallies (according to Michelle Malkin, after all, they're purely the work of librul "infiltrators" trying to make them look bad). O'Reilly also tried on this claim:
O'Reilly: Look, if you want to go to the NAACP, you can find the same kind of radical element there.
Oh really? Does O'Reilly have any evidence to support this inflammatory claim? Of course not! He's Bill O'Reilly! We'll do it live!

Then Hill provided the scientific evidence from that University of Washington study of Tea Parties' racial attitudes. O'Reilly countered with a bizarre and half-assed attack piece from Real Clear Politics (to which the authors of the study have already responded). Interestingly, O'Reilly can't even read the RCP critique correctly and managed to mangle the numbers to say exactly the opposite of what they actually say.

Hill stayed on point, and O'Reilly refused to budge. He eventually resorted to that old standby, BillO Projection Theater:
O'Reilly: You believe what you believe, but I think you came in with a preconceived notion. And so did the professor.

Hill: No, I came in as a trained social scientist reading a study.

O'Reilly: You came in with two examples. I rebutted.

Hill: Yes, with fallacious information.

O'Reilly: No, it's not fallacious. Real Clear is very clear about how they did it.

Hill: No. But they're wrong.

O'Reilly: You say they're wrong, they say they're right. Let the audience decide.

Hill: Audience, please look at the study and read this for yourself. You'll see.

O'Reilly: OK! I want them to!

Hill: And if it turns out that my interpretation is correct, would that then make the Tea Party racist?

O'Reilly: No.

Hill: Well then you're saying I can't win! Even if they agree with my interpretation of the study, you're still right!
That's right. Why liberals think it will ever be any different on O'Reilly's show -- or any Fox show, for that matter -- is beyond me.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Joe Miller: The Patriot Movement May Be About To Get Its Own Senator

[Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.]

One of the real-world effects of the rise of the Tea Party movement, as we've been reporting here awhile, is that it has effectively revived the militia/Patriot movement of the 1990s.

A crystalline example of this is the Sarah-Palin-endorsed GOP Senate nominee in Alaska, Joe Miller.

As Justin Elliott reports for Salon, Miller is a favorite of the gun-toting secessionists who populate the state's militia ranks:
But the so-called "open-carry" display actually underscores the unusual enthusiasm Miller's candidacy has generated among members of militia and Second Amendment absolutist groups in Alaska who are excited about his hardline stance against the federal government.

"It's safe to say that Joe Miller is a friend of patriots," Norm Olson, commander of the Alaska Citizens Militia, told Salon. "His beliefs and platform favor Second Amendment rights as well as the power of nullification when the federal government intrudes into the private lives of Alaskans."

Olson, who lives on the Kenai Peninsula, claims that his group has several hundred members and supporters, adding, "what fuels the militia is fear." The militia's ideology is outlined in a list of 17 "acts of war." The list includes "firearms restrictions or other disarmament," "mandatory medical anything," "federal patrols," "taking control of children under duress or threat," "federalization of law enforcement," and "surrender powers to a corporation or foreign government."

That emphasis on opposition to federal power meshes with Miller's central message: get the federal government out of our lives. He often calls himself a "constitutional conservative." His website explains what that means:
The only answer [to government spending] is to return our federal government to the limits prescribed by our Constitution. Federal powers not specified in the Constitution are reserved to the States by the 10th Amendment.
Critics call this Tentherism, an interpretation of the Constitution that does not allow for a vast swath of what the federal government does today -- from Social Security to gun regulation. This is the centerpiece of Miller's political identity. He asserts that there is no constitutional authority for the health care reform law or proposed cap and trade legislation. He advocates a state takeover of federally controlled land in Alaska such as Denali National Park.

These are the kinds of positions that are creating buzz in the militia world.
Indeed, as I've explained in detail previously, the "Tenthers" are Patriots, pure and simple: the whole "state sovereignty" scheme was invented in the 1990s by a far-right Oklahoma legislator named Charles Duke, who was known for consorting with the vilest elements of the extremist right, including Christian Identity leaders.

Elliott's piece is excellent, though as Political Animal at the Alaska Dispatch notes, there are additional facts that add more nuance to the story. In particular, while the story focuses on some of the more colorful Patriot-movement figures in the state -- including Norm Olson, who actually only relatively recently moved to the state from Michigan -- it omits the state's longest-running and most substantial Patriot-movement presence: the Alaska Independence Party, which has the been movement's chief vehicle in Alaska since the early 1990s.

Miller claims he doesn't know what the agenda of the AIP might be, but as Craig Medred at Alaska Dispatch observes, Miller's scheme to boot the federal government out of the state of Alaska is pretty much identical to the AIP's.

Listen to Miller here, last Thursday on Fox with Neil Cavuto:

Miller: Well, you know, to change D.C., you've got to change the people that are there. I mean, this is the mindset -- it's a crisis of leadership that's caused our country to be at the point that it's at. The direction of this nation, it's not happened, you know, in one or two years. It's taken decades. And that's really reflected, I think, in the composition that we have up in D.C. today. So, you know, it's not an easy task, I will tell you. But that seniority's not going to matter after November.
[It sure won't in Alaska, bub. Because you know that pork pipeline Alaskans have been used to bellying up to and feeding off of? It's going away, far away.]
Miller: Clearly Alaskans are going to I think embrace the future, which is, I think, resource development, moving forward our state by getting more state control, and pushing the federal government out our back yard.
That's going to be one helluva removal job, considering that we're talking about 222 million acres -- 60 percent of federal lands -- that was granted to the state when it was granted statehood in 1959. It's almost entirely impenetrable wilderness. All told, that's an area surpassing either Texas or California in size.

But that's just part of what the AIP has been pushing as its agenda for some time. Moreover, it makes sense that Miller would sound like an AIP candidate, since his sponsor, Sarah Palin, has a long and colorful history with the AIP too.

Many of you will recall the story Max Blumenthal and I co-wrote investigating Palin's connections to the AIP and Wasilla's tax-protesting Patriots. As I summarized back then:
* Palin formed a political alliance with Wasilla's Patriot-movement faction while still a Wasilla city councilman, and they played a significant role in her successful campaign against the three-term incumbent mayor in 1996.

* Palin, in one of her first acts as mayor, attempted to fill the seat vacated by her ascension to the mayorship with one of the leaders of this faction -- a bellicose man described by the city councilman who blocked his appointment as having a "violent" disposition.

* Mayor Palin also fired the city's museum director at the behest of this faction.

* Palin also organized this faction to turn out at a city council meeting to shout down a proposed local gun-control ordinance. Palin also determinedly allowed the testimony of the pro-gun crowd before the bill had even been presented to the council or prepared for public hearings -- a clear violation of city-council policy.

* Palin had a continual association with Alaskan Independence Party chairman Mark Chryson (a Wasilla resident) throughout her tenure as mayor, and joined to support him in a series of anti-gun-control and anti-tax measures, both locally and statewide.

* Palin attended the AIP's state conventions in 1994 and 2006, the latter when she was campaigning for the governorship. The 1994 appearance is more questionable, since it came at time when the AIP was more openly radical (its members had backed militia figure Col. James "Bo" Gritz in the 1992 election), and its platform then contained what Chryson calls "racist language".

* She sent a videotaped address to the AIP at its 2008 convention, ostensibly because "I've always thought competition is so good, and that applies to political parties as well" -- though notably, she sent no such similar videotaped welcome to the state's Democratic Party.
You'll recall the memo that McCain campaign chief Steve Schmidt wrote to Palin and the staff after Sarah got agitated watching me on CNN, describing what the AIP stands for:
"Secession," he wrote. "It is their entire reason for existence. A cursory examination of the website shows that the party exists for the purpose of seceding from the union. That is the stated goal on the front page of the web site."
As I noted then, the cold reality is that Palin has a real history of empowering these extremists, and pandering to their conspiratorial beliefs, from her position of public office. That was an issue then, and it continues to be an issue today.

For Joe Miller, especially.

Especially appalling has been the tone-deaf idiocy of the DSCC in failing to step up to the plate, as Shannyn Moore at Mudflats puts it:
It’s mind-boggling how the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee hasn’t shown up for Scott McAdams, Alaska’s Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate.

They’ve had weeks to help secure a now open seat they didn’t think they had a prayer to take. Why aren’t they fighting for Alaska? Lisa Murkowski asked McAdams where his DSCC support was. When it didn’t show, she threw back in as a write-in candidate.

The front page of their website features a picture of Sarah Palin. Fear of her brand of crazy has been an ATM for the DSCC. They’ve raised millions off of Palin word salads with guano dressing. The DSCC website also has a link to Palin’s anointed Alaskan proxy for US Senate, Joe Miller, but they haven’t supported his opponent.

Alaska is the cheapest place in the country to run a campaign. One hundred dollars of campaign money in such a small market is equivalent to $2,000 for a race in Texas. With Palin’s negative numbers over 50%, her candidate, Joe Miller, is vulnerable. The Tea Party is recruiting people with “Lisa M” type names to run a write-in, and every Murkowski vote will be challenged by their attorneys. It will make the Franken/Coleman recount look like play-dough hour in kindergarten.
Stay tuned. I have a feeling this Bizarro Planet soap opera isn't over yet.