Sunday, April 20, 2008

Truest statement of the week

When I look to the strength of our country, I look to the mothers who built homes and raised families, and to the working women who were and are this nation's lifeline. All during my childhood, it was my mother who kept our family going. She worked two jobs as a cook to support our family through the Great Depression and through her hard work bought her own business, two hotels that she would run herself.
In families all across America, mothers like my own are working hard everyday just to make sure their children have food on the table. My mother taught me to hold my head high and to work for a better future, but mothers and daughters alike have to work harder than their husbands or brothers just to make the same amount.
April 22, Equal Pay Day, marks the day when women's pay will finally catch up to men's from the year before -- earning 77 cents to ever dollar made by a man, it takes us an extra four months to earn what they would have made in a year. Almost a century after women earned the right to vote, we live in a world where we afford only 77 cents on the dollar worth of rent, health care, education, and opportunity for our children and families. Our children deserve better; they deserve a change.
Throughout her life, Hillary has refused to wait for change to come. She has pushed for change with the full weight of her body and soul and she has done so all over the world, from Arkansas to China to Washington, D.C. She's fought for equal pay, a living wage, health care for our children, and security for our families.
Any mother knows that these are all issues we face together, and we need a president who will help us answer the call for change, who will help us to make the world better, and who won't shy away from the hard fight. Hillary is that leader, and I know she'll stand with us.

The one, the only, the amazing Dolores Huerta explaining why she's supporting Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.

A note to our readers

Hey --

We all have a nasty cold. I (Jim) caught it and by Saturday evening, everyone (Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.) had it. (We warned Kat, who, instead of coming over, participated by phone to avoid catching it.) We do have an edition.

Here's who participated:

The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona, Jess, Ty, Ava and Jim,
Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude,
Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,
C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review,
Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills),
Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix,
Mike of Mikey Likes It!,
Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz,
Ruth of Ruth's Report,
Wally of The Daily Jot,

And Dallas. We thank everyone. The way the edition worked, we mainly were staring at each other (Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava, C.I. and me) and feeling that out of body disconnect you have during a nasty cold. Dona rightly called for short pieces early on. Ava and C.I. immediately broke away (the break away republic?) to work on their TV piece figuring they'd be stronger at the start than at the end of the writing session. At three o'clock a.m., we asked that "Highlights" be written. When it was completed, we told everyone goodnight and took a two hour nap. These are very roughed out pieces. After our nap, we worked on the smoothing over what we had and they are basically what went out in the print version while we were sleeping.

Like Janis Joplin with Southern Comfort, we got through the writing edition each holding our own bottle of cough syrup. Most of us went through two bottles in the course of the edition and took far too many cold capsules.

But we've got an edition. Here's what we've got:

Truest statement of the week -- the one and only Dolores Huerta. Nuff said.

Editorial: The Democratic primary is for Democrats... -- It really is and if there's a personal disappointment in this edition for me it's that this didn't become sharper post-nap. It's too on the nose. But, to steal from Kat, it is what it is.

TV: The Christ-child fumbles -- When, post-nap, inspiration wasn't there, Dona said, "Hey, we've got Ava and C.I.'s commentary and it's strong." It is. If nothing else works this edition, we've got this. Ava and C.I. hitting hard. We actually raided their commentary for other pieces. In the process, they wonder if they were clear enough (in the final version) on the Dohrn issue. Bill Ayers could say he's just a member, as Linda Evans and Susan Rosenberg were; however, they weren't Bernardine's partner. Bernardine was the leader of Weather Underground, Bill was a member and the partner of the leader. It's a big difference between Evans and Rosenberg. See the note on the end for why they did not include a series they planned to. Ava explains as I type that if Fox is telling the truth about giving Canterbury Law a big push this summer, it makes more sense to do a review then when it will be airing as opposed to now when it has finished airing. As they note, they're not sure they aren't being lied to but they'll wait on their review. Totally unrelated but I did a note at The Common Ills to one of C.I.'s entry and Rebecca asked me to include this somewhere in my note because a question has come up. She planned to address it in Friday's roundtable but there wasn't time. Some organization e-mailed about a contest to vote on your fave female blogger. E-mailed the public account of TCI. I noted it, noted C.I. wasn't a blogger, so use your vote some other way. I wrote, without checking with C.I., that C.I. would cover it. C.I.'s attitude (rightly) was, "I didn't write that, I don't have to explain to it." C.I. didn't support the contest. C.I. checked with the other women in the community and they didn't support it. So it was never mentioned -- community wide -- except in the note I added to one of C.I.'s entries. It was seen as pitting woman against woman and also thought that it wouldn't be about what anyone actually did, just name recognition. That is how it ended up. My apologies for promoting a popularity contest and, to be clear, C.I. hasn't commented on it and won't comment on it because, quote, "I never brought it up."

The Symbionese Liberation Army endorses Barack! -- This is a humor post. We note that at the end. If Weather can endorse Barack, let's hear from the other 'revolutionaries.'

Words from the 'Prophet' Michelle -- She's so smart. At least that's the lie. This is a short piece. Ava and C.I. didn't work on this piece, they were writing their TV commentary.

10 Questions Charlie and George could have asked -- Ava and C.I. also didn't work on this piece due to writing their TV commentary. Their seems to be some notion that George and Charlier were out of bounds and asking questions no one should ask. Here are some that the rest of us felt they should ask.

Mental midget -- Sammy the Socialist works on the Obama campaign and that, no doubt, prevents him from 'advising' Noam Chomsky as to how Chomsky might actually reach people. (Funny, we thought Chomsky had reached millions.)

Ms. magazine welcomes homophobes -- Hey, hey, ho, ho, ho, Donna Brazile has got to go!

The sad, sad decline of Robert Parry -- When we woke up, Jess actually had the ending for this. It was a lyric he made up himself but no one wrote it down. Ty was going to write it down but, sluggish from the cold, forgot. No one, including Jess, could remember the lyrics. Since they're forgotten by all, we naturally assume that they would have been perfect for this piece and lament their loss.

Campaign Politics -- We raided Ava and C.I.'s commentary to get the point about Amy Goodman not knowing that Matt Gonzalez, if elected in November 2003, would NOT have been the first Green mayor in the US.

Dumb Ass of the Week: David Corn -- He really embarrassed himself last week, didn't he?

The roundtable -- This is a Friday roundtable that we're resposting.

Highlights -- Mike, Ruth (whom we forgot to list last week, sorry), Cedric, Kat, Betty, Rebecca, Elaine, Marcia and Wally wrote this and picked out the highlights. We thank them for it.

And that's what it is. Us, we're blowing our noses for the millionth time and getting some real sleep. See you next week.

-- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I.

Editorial: The Democratic primary is for Democrats

In a country that regularly ignores all but the candidates from the two largest parties in their coverage, that shuts them out of the debates, we grasp it may be difficult for some Americans to grasp that the United States of America has many political parties that go far beyond Democratic and Republican.

But other parties do exist. They include the Green Party, the Communist Party, the Libetarian Party and many, many more. They should all hold their primaries and they should all be invited to the debates.

However, political party primaries are for member of that political party. Translation, Democratic party members are the ones who should be choosing Democratic candidates.

At times, the Obama campaign and its surrogates grasp that fact. Despite the reality that Obama has repeatedly sponsored "Be a Democrat for a Day" movements in various states to up his totals, when Rush Limbaugh encouraged Texas and Ohio Republicans to cross-over and vote for Hillary (they didn't), the Obama campaign had an uproar. You had some surrogates stating that Limbaugh had violated campaign rules.

Judging by that, even the Obama campaign grasps that Democratic primaries are for members of the Democratic Party.

But that's not who's voting for Obama (and often, filling out an entire ticket where Obama is their only vote in all the Democratic races listed). That's not who's endorsing Obama.

The buzzword last week was (shades of McPeak earlier) was "McCarthyism!" You had The Pooper Marc Cooper launch it, you had Bill Ayers brother echo it, you had Robert Parry disgrace himself to join in with me-too.

Here's reality for you, not only did people scream foul when Limbaugh encouraged Republicans to vote for Hillary, in 2004, the Democratic Party and Panhandle Media were all about outing Ralph Nader's Republican donors. Nader had more than Republicans donating to his campaign; however, the meme was Ralph is backed by Republicans!

That wasn't McCarthyism. By the non-standards of Robert Parry, it is, but in reality, it's just shining a light on who is supporting whom.

So who's supporting Barack Obama?

Democratic primaries are for Democratic Party members. They are not for members of the CP or the Socialist Workers Party, or anyone else. A Democratic primary is where Democrats select who they want to be their nominee.

On some level, closet cases grasp that which is why they pose as Democrats or hide behind the non-buzz term "progressive." If you're endorsing a Democratic Party candidate during a Democratic primary, you've gone public and the people have a right to know whether or not you're a Democrat.

So Communists who've lived their life in closets get no sympathy at all. And they have no protection from exposure. They have elected to butt into a primary of a political party they are no members of and, having done that, the American people have a right to know exactly what their political beliefs are. Don't like it? Don't make a public endorsement.

Non-Democrats injecting themselves into a Democratic primary via endorsements include, but are not limited to, Barbara Ehrenreich, Eve Ensler, Mark Rudd, Laura Flanders and Carl Davidson. Again, the complete list would be very, very long. These people need to butt the hell out of a Democratic primary because they are not Democrats. In addition, Matthew Rothschild is not a Democrat. While he has no written the words "I endorse Barack Obama," his non-stop 'coverage' skirts the law under which The Progressive operates and they may indeed lose their tax free status. (Especially when you combine his 'coverage' with Ruth Connif's.)

The general election is for all Americans. You can vote for whomever you want then. But when it comes to political party primaries, the members of that party are supposed to be selecting the nominee. Those who are not members of the Democratic Party but insist upon rushing in to endorse Obama (Frances Fox Piven, we mean you), have no claims of "privacy," have no right to charge "McCarthyism!" By endorsing during a political primary, the closet cases are implying that they are Democrats. Nothing could be futher from the truth and the public has a right to know.

We'll happily knock down the closet doors on every one of them from outside the Democratic Party who attempts to hijack the primary to a political party they are not a member of.

Fair is fair, C.I. noted Friday, pointing out that Democrats outed Nader's Republican supporters in 2004. By the same token, the closet cases should be outed. It's not McCarthyism. It's exposing fraud. We understand that a campaign whose news media contact is a Socialist would be worried about exposure, but those are the breaks. Get used to it.

TV: The Christ-child fumbles

Last week, ABC aired the Democratic debate and, as interesting as the debate was, what was even more interesting was what followed. We were especially amused by the propagandist who should be confined to the "People's Republic of Brooklyn" (as she's so fond of referring to it). The live debate broadcast Wednesday night and was hosted by Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos. Even those basic facts were too much for Pravda on the Hudson. Friday, two days later, Amy Goodman would declare, "Just some of the questions in the first half of last night’s presidential debate on ABC." She'd say that after offering a clip fest from the Wednesday (not Thursday -- facts are hard for Goody) debate which she referred to as "some of the questions" asked during the debate.

We're glad the Queen of Panhandle Media ended her clip-fest with a non-question, Charlie Gibson declaring, "The crowd is turning on me. The crowd is turning on me." Facts are never good enough for the piece of trash Goodman. That wasn't a question nor did it take place after a question. The audience booed, near the end of the broadcast, and after the debate had ended, when another commercial break was announced.


Goodman never met fact she couldn't molest or batter. But that moment is important. Not for the lie she's selling or the one that aged socialite Arianna Huffington tried to push. They want you to believe the audience was offended by the debate. The audience set through the entire debate. The audience demonstrated they had no problem booing. The audience never booed during the debate. The studio audience never found anything awful about the questions.

That's because there really wasn't anything awful about the questions. Or, in fact, unusual about them. They were the same type of questions that had been asked throughout the debates. What had a bunch of LIARS offended was that Barack Obama had to answer questions.

In the Friday segment of Democracy Now entitled "Great American Hypocrites" we were surprised only that Amy wasn't profiling herself. Her guest was Glen-Glen -- the non-Democrat. Glen-Glen and Amy skinnydipped in a cesspool of lies.

Goody wanted to let you know just how unprofessional the questions asked were -- the ones asked of Obama. How interesting that in her gas bag segment, she couldn't find offense at any questions asked of Hillary. And how very strange of Goodman to take offense at any question to begin with. We remember her asking Newt Gingrich whether or not he had called Hillary Clinton a "bitch" and following up by repeatedly questioning him on whether or not his own mother was a liar. In fact, Goody is so proud of her moment of 'journalism' that she includes it in her book Exception to the Rulers, recounts it for six pages (pp. 245 -250). Is someone like that really in any position to finger-point at others?

Sad-sad Glen-Glen and Goody lied to viewers and said the questions weren't fair to Barack. The questions were the more than fair and, in fact, the two are proven liars by the immediate news cycle.

Hillary was asked tough questions as well (the questions that Charlie and George offered were not "gotcha" questions and those repeating that lie just reveal their own journalistic ignorance). Barack was asked about Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers and flag lapel buttons. Hillary was asked about some people not finding her trustworthy, about Bosnia and about whether or not Barack Obama was electable. That last question was prefaced by George noting that super delegates whisper Hillary has been making that argument in private.

That last question was actually what dominated the news cycle. "YES! YES! YES!" screamed the immediate headlines. That's the moment the press seized on and it was as tough as any question Barack was asked; however, Hillary is a professional and knows how to answer questions.

The problem wasn't the questions asked of Barack, the problem was that he couldn't answer them. It is appalling to see Little Red Riding Hood Amy Goodman, broadcasting from allegedly free speech radio, tell the country that some questions are off limits. The ghost of Lew Hill should haunt Goody for the rest of her life because she doesn't belong on Pacifica radio if she can't support free speech.

During the debate, the Obama campaign sent out several text messages to supporters urging them to take to several discussion boards and leave comments. The few that did so used multiple identites. It was appalling to see The New York Times report on how many 'people' posted comments at ABC News when the paper provided their own message board and, just looking at the IP addresses of the comments, would have demonstrated to them that the "many" were actually the few. Some commenting at the paper's boards, using multiple identities, would forget who they were posting as at any given moment providing laughter for anyone closely reading the full thread of comments.

Early on the text messages from the Obama campaign were telling people to say he was doing a great job. It was only in the second half of the debate, the so-called 'substance' portion, when he failed there as well that the campaign began texting people to complain about how 'unfair' the debate was.

Barack was awful throughout the debate, uanble to handle personal or policy questions, unable to stop pausing repeatedly in the midst of a single sentence, unable to stop using "uh" as a comma, noun and verb. He looked like an incompetent. And the biggest shock for his groupies was learning that, in fact, their Christ-child could not walk on water.

Amy Goodman, on Friday, wanted you to know that some people were offended. Yeah, MoveOn already endorsed him, they are hardly impartial. But she also cited press 'critics.' We've been really kind in our three year run when referring to Water Cooler Critics. We've generally never named them. We've just noted the nonsense flowing out of their word processors. One is a sexist pig and we've referred to him repeatedly. No surprise Goody would cite him as an 'authority.'

That's The Washington Post's Tom Shales who HATES women. We've referenced him in our Men In Trees review and our Charlie's Angels commentary. We've actually referenced him non-stop but if he's going to be seen as an "impartial" voice, cited as such, we're happy to out his sexist ass. Since the 70s, he has scorned women in review after review. You might wonder, setting sexism aside, why any outlet would let a 'critic' span four decades? That's a good question and you really have to wonder at what point he's going to retire or get a real job. But the reality is his body of work reveals just what a sexist pig he is, year after year, decade after decade. He has attacked shows starring women just for starring women. He's been happy to use his space to focus on the actresses' hairstyles instead of the programs. He is not impartial voice in any matter involving women and shouldn't be seen as such. We noted long ago, without naming him, that he should have been fired by the paper long ago. So it's no surprise that someone with a history of decades of public sexism would be cited by Goody as an "objective" authority. She also cites the lame Greg Mitchell and he showed that he likes his women silent not all that long ago, now didn't he?

The reality is that both candidates were asked tough questions, the sort that the media says go to character. Just like when Amy Goodman asked Newt Gingrich if his mother was a liar. Again, she's the last to ever lecture. Hillary, asked about the issue of whether or not Barack was electable, did attempt to dance around the issue before saying, "Yes. Yes. Yes." That was what the news cycle ran with. We don't blame her for dancing because Barack is not electable but she can't very well say that on national TV. If any of the questions in the first portion qualified as an actual "gotcha" question, it was that one.

Bosnia came up via a man on camera who stated she lost his vote over that. After she had stated several times that when arriving in Bosnia, she came under fire, he no longer found her trustworthy. Hillary could have stammered and "uh . . . uh . . . uh"ed her way through her response the way Barack did. She didn't do that. She apologized, she repeated that she had apologized, she stated it wasn't correct, that she had clearly been wrong and that she found it very embarrassing.

That's how you answer that sort of question. There's really nothing left for anyone to add to that (though some will). It's above board, it's clear. Hillary was honest and forthcoming and that's why she won the debate.

Let's turn to Barack and the idea that he was asked questions that were off limits. Jeremiah Wright is off limits? That's hilarious. Sort of like Barack's apparently inflated drug use. Barack can bring it up in his books, he can joke about it with Jay Leno on national TV but if anyone ever asks him about it or comments on it, the cries of "UNFAIR!" and "RACISM!" fly.

Jeremiah Wright was the subject of a speech Barack gave in Philadelphia last month, a much covered speech. He then high tailed it out of the country (to vacation in the Virgin Islands) and, upon return, mainly stuck to the 'news' programs like ABC's The View. Even on those sort of programs, he took questions about Wright.

Suddenly it was off limits for him to be asked about Wright? People are calling George "hostile" and worse for asking a yes/no question that if Barack had only answered "yes" would have ended the matter. George asked whether Barack thought Wright was as patriotic as Barack was. Barack couldn't answer that and fell back on the fact that Wright served in the military. So what? So did Lee Harvey Oswald. That's not an answer to a yes/no question. That's an evasion.

Barack gave a speech about Wright and wants to reap all the good press for that and then claim that Wright is an off-limits topic. In every question in the first half of the debate that Hillary or Barack was asked, the candidate's response determined the way America saw them. Barack was shifty, evasive and that's no one's fault but Barack Obama's.

The media loves to focus on what they term "character issues." That's nothing new. That didn't spring up in this debate. Were Barack all that his groupies think he is, the manufactured 'controversy' wouldn't have raged. The questions weren't the problems. His inability to answer was the problem.

The flag lapel is the most cited example of unfair questions. That came from a woman and it's interesting that a man saying he doesn't trust Hillary and a woman asking why Barack refuses to wear a flag lapel pin only results in attention to the latter but we read the subtext as "%$& women!"

Here's reality: Barack Obama made a big showy comment on how he didn't wear a flap lapel pin, of how it was, in effect, wrapping yourself in the flag. He stated (this is all in 2007 to the Associated Press) that he believed he proved his patriotism by his actions. Those remarks were ones he was proud of 2007.

Faced with a question from a woman, who probably wasn't following Barack coverage in 2007,

about that very issue, he couldn't answer. He couldn't even trot out his year-old response. That's not the moderators' fault, that's not Hillary's fault. The blame for that sorry moment goes to Barack.

Then there is the issue of William Ayres. And that may be the most illuminating moment in the 'press' that followed. The Weather Underground broke off from the SDS during Vietnam. The Weather Underground came about because you had a criminal government ignoring the wishes of the people and continuing the illegal war in Vietnam. You had a government suspected of spying on the people. Two administrations, Democratic and Republican, had continued the illegal war. Frustrations were high and, honestly, the SDS was out of it. The SDS wanted to be top-down. And the top was a bunch of White, sexist males. That point is especially important and we will come back to it because it's a point that none of last week's commentary grasped. The Weather Underground believe in violence. (Believes -- few members have renounced violence. Ayers has not renounced it.) They wanted to bring the war home and to do so via armed clashes and bombings. They bombed government buildings. Some would argue, they bombed the people's buildings and, certainly, repairs were paid for by the American citizens. They also bombed corporation buildings. But their most famous bombing was a residential building and an accident. Making bombs in a townhouse in NYC resulted in the bombing that claimed three lives, all presumed to be members of the Weather Underground (many suspect a male involved was actually a government agent).

Bill Ayers was a part of that group, the media repeatedly told you last week. His actions were sort-of outlined in the debate:

MR. STEPHANOPOULOS: Senator, if you get the nomination, you'll have to -- (applause) -- (inaudible).I want to give Senator Clinton a chance to respond, but first a follow-up on this issue, the general theme of patriotism in your relationships. A gentleman named William Ayers, he was part of the Weather Underground in the 1970s. They bombed the Pentagon, the Capitol and other buildings. He's never apologized for that. And in fact, on 9/11 he was quoted in The New York Times saying, "I don't regret setting bombs; I feel we didn't do enough."An early organizing meeting for your state senate campaign was held at his house, and your campaign has said you are friendly. Can you explain that relationship for the voters, and explain to Democrats why it won't be a problem?

What followed in the debate and what followed in the media proved the very real bias in favor of Barack Obama.

Barack tried to justify his relationship with Ayers instead of explaining it. He didn't answer the question but tried to whine the above took place when he was eight-years-old. That is a lie. Barack was born in 1961 and Weather Underground's actions took place over many years. (It was embarrassing to hear, on Friday, Diane Rehm insist, "He was eight-years-old!") He termed the actions "detestable" -- sounding like a First Class Priss. When he did so, he justified the question.

If the actions are "detestable," why is he hanging around Ayers? Hillary added to his relationship with Ayers (she didn't add all and she knows a lot more, as do we) and that led Barack to respond, "I'm going to have to respond to this just really quickly, but by Senator Clinton's own vetting standards, I don't think she would make it, since President Clinton pardoned or commuted the sentences of two members of the Weather Underground, which I think is a slightly more significant act than me . . ."

Despite Professor Patti Williams public orgasms over Barack's legal 'knowledge,' we've long noted the man's an idiot who can't even grasp what "verus" in the title of a court case means. We have no idea how he ended up president of the Harvard Law Review (not much of a credit in our eyes) but it was due to something other than a grasp of the law. So we'll assume that he wasn't trying to lie, he just truly doesn't know (idiot) whether Clinton pardoned or commuted the sentences of Linda Evans and Susan Rosenberg. He commuted them. They were not pardoned. We pointed that out Thursday morning. Sadly, it required pointing out again Thursday night. No pardons took place. But if you need a better example of the bias the press has in favor of Obama and against Clinton, you need look no further. Barack declared that Bill Clinton "pardoned or commuted" and the press ran with what? Pardoned. Given the choice to run with either, they went for the one that painted the Clintons badly and excused Barack's friendship with a domestic terrorist.

That tells you a lot. What a journalist actually does -- a real one -- is examine that charge, research it. In doing so, it would have been obvious that the two women had their sentences commuted, not that they were pardoned. But why bother to actually do your job when it's so much easier to repeat a lie -- one that benefits Barack and one that his campaign repeated on Thursday and as late as Friday. Barack's campaign is lying, there was no pardon.

David Corn, who used to pride himself on the facts, had a screaming meltdown when he took part in a media conference with the Clinton campaign. He insisted that "you guys obviously know, we all know, that President Clinton pardoned two Weathermen . . . uh . . . activists, terrorists, whatever you want to call them." No, David, we didn't all know that because it never happened. But when you're spoon-fed by the Obama campaign, when you're willing to publicly disgrace yourself to trade journalism in for campaign booster, you're prone to make mistakes.

Apparently not content to sound stark raving mad in front of his peers, David Corn then took to Mother Jones (aka Consumer Reports for the faux left) to brag, "I asked an obvious one: Did Hillary Clinton believe that it had been appropriate in 2001 for President Bill Clinton to have pardoned two members of the Weather Underground as he left office?" No, David, you didn't ask an obvious question, you embarrassed yourself by flaunting the fact that you've sold yourself out to the Obama campaign and are now letting them do the 'research' for you. It's nothing to take pride in.

It really was amazing to watch so many outlets -- presented with two possibilities of what Bill Clinton had done -- run with the more extreme and do so on the basis of the Obama campaign. Again, there bias was showing and they should all apologize.

A few seemed to grasp the need to clamp down on this thing before reality set in because reality wasn't being told by the press missing the story. The few (Bambi supporters) seemed to grasp that, no, Susan Rosenberg and Linda Evans combined were not the same thing as Bill Ayers. They aren't. And that's the point the media has repeatedly missed but that's how a sexist system operates. See, in some relationships, there is a leader and there is a follower. Ayers was the follower. Sing along with us:

And when the country was falling apart
Bernardine got it all shook up
And then there's Dorhn.
And then there's Dorhn.
And then there's Dorhn.

Yeah, Bernardine. The woman. The leader of the Weather Underground. Bill Ayer's partner and wife. Bernardine rightly grasps the powder keg this is and has refused all press requests. Bill Ayers wasn't just a member of the radical organization, he was (and is) married to its leader. He is not Susan Rosenberg or Linda Evans, he's elevated several steps higher.

Last April, The Nation was bemoaning "a recent spate of films and books that sanitize and romanticize the Weather past" (Christopher Phelps, "The New SDS," April 16, 2007). That would include 2003's documentary The Weather Underground in which a modern day Bernardine states that she will not renounce violence. We think it's amazing documentary, we think Bernardine's an amazing woman. But for Barack to claim that he is excused for hanging out with Ayers (and Dohrn) because he was eight-years-old (lie) when Weather Underground was active really requires that Ayers or Dohrn renounce their violent crimes. They don't. And if Bernardine doesn't, Bill won't because he has always been the follower to her leader. Bernardine was the leader of the Weather Underground.

Grasping that fact, it's hilarious to read the coverage post-debate which treats Bernardine as an arm-piece. She is the power broker in that relationship, Bill is the trophy wife. And there are other Weather ties to Obama. One that is public is former Weather Underground member Mark Rudd endorsing Barack.

The question wasn't shocking in a debate. Barack has bragged non-stop of his alleged superior judgement. He has no record to run on so all he's got his own life. People are going to ask questions and Ayers has been a minor media focus for months now. The focus wasn't helped when the Obama campaign attempted to lie that Ayers and Barack were friends because they had children the same age. As The Guardian of London's Daniel Nasaw pointed out Dorhn and Ayers' son Zayd is 30-years-old, Malik is 27-years-old and Chesa Boudin, Kathy Boudin and David Gilbert's son that Ayers and Dorhn raised, is also 27, while Barack and Michelle Obama's daughters "are 6 and 9, respectively."

Ayers and Dorhn raised Chesa because his parents went to prison in 1983 for their actions in a bank robbery (unrelated to Weather Underground). We mention that for a reason. Dorhn and Ayers made national headlines and led the evening news broadcasts when they turned themselves in at the start of the 1980s, Barack Obama, born in 1961, was already a college student at Occidental and should have been aware of the big news.

Bill Ayers was not just a member of Weather Underground, he was married to (and still is) the group's leader. It's been very interesting to see Bernardine stripped of her credit in last week's accounts. It was equally interesting to see David Corn rush to Weather's defense at Mother Jones. For the record, we think Weather Underground was a response to the times and the actions of a criminal government (and we worry that something similar awaits America in the immediate future). We grasp that it was a complex time.

We also did not enshrine the hideous Mark Felt. Mark Felt, in his role as associate director of the FBI, broke every law imagineable and, in fact, that included getting Jennifer Dohrn's panties as a "trophy" during one illegal search. (Jennifer is Bernardine's younger sister.) The law breaking and the repression of Felt were among the things Weather Underground was responding to, along with the illegal war in Vietnam and a great deal more. But July 4, 2005, David Corn's co-written hagiography (co-written with Jeff Goldberg) of Mark Felt ("How Mark Felt Fooled the FBI") couldn't stop lavishing the criminal with praise. So it's more than a bit amusing watching Corn last week twist himself like a pretzel to mitigate Weather Underground's actions.

What it boils down to is the debate exposed Barack to be not-ready for the presidency. For all the talk of his superior judgement, his amazing speech making skills and blah blah blah, on the stage Wednesday, asked very basic questions, he couldn't deliver.

Hillary did deliver. The news cycle, the immediate news cycle, seized upon what they thought would be the defining moment: "YES! YES! YES!" to whether Barack was electable. Hillary was asked about the rumors that she has told super delegates that Barack is not electable. The press has run with that over and over, with those whispers. So her response was news. But Glen-Glen and Amy Poops aren't offended by that. They're not offended that Hillary was asked about whispers. Truth is, for all their faux outrage, they're probably not offended that Barack was asked about concrete things. They're sad that their lover boy couldn't get it up in the debate. They're sad that he came off like so much erectile dysfunction.

There he was, their man, their "goldenboy," doing that left-handed jerking off motion he does over and over whenever he speaks and he was beating a limp horse.

Bambi didn't deliver. He was a selfish-pork-face (as Gilda Radner once worded it) and they can't accept that he has feet of clay and isn't ready to run for president, so the problem must be the questions!

Hillary was actually asked tougher questions. Hillary didn't give a big speech about Bosnia after her mistake. Barack gave a big speech about Jeremiah Wright. If Barack found the questions offensive, he could have refused to answer. He didn't choose to take that stand. He chose to respond and he responded with evasions and half-truths. Realizing how pathetic he looked as the debate wound down, the Obama campaign texted their groupies, ordering them to take to the blogs. The day after MoveOn was calling for mob mentality as well. Most pathetic was FAIR joining in.

For the record, the latter two weren't offended when Hillary was slimed on MSNBC with accusations that she was "pimping" her daughter Chelsea. For the record, when Randi Rhodes practiced the sort of misogny that only a queen bee can, they issued no e-mails. For the record, when Jesse Jackson Jr. flat-out lied about Hillary Clinton on national TV, they didn't say a word. Bill Moyers was so 'tickled' by it, that he broadcast it and didn't tell his viewers that Jackson was lying. It's been open season on women -- not just Hillary -- and they haven't given a damn.

Now they want to act offended because their fellow jerked his limp noodle on stage instead of delivering. His embarrassments are his own. George and Charlie asked questions -- and, pay attention Amy Goodman -- none of the questions were, "Is your mother a liar?"

The aftermath was very illuminating. For example, you saw Barack Obama flip the bird when speaking of Hillary Clinton which was appalling and only further demonstrated how non-presidential he is. It did tickle his followers. His followers, his mob, went a little further. They issued a video fatawa on George that YouTube took down. That is how disgusting the "Hope" Brigade really is. They will put together a video announcing the death of someone and his "crime" was asking questions that they didn't like.

We're not concerned with tone and weren't bothered by the multitude of critiques of George. Call him a hair ball, a liar or whatever you want. We certainly have. But when you move into the area of "HE MUST DIE," you've really gone too far.

But they were aided in that. They were encouraged to do that. To really get the mob screaming, they were fed the lie that George is in the tank for Hillary. Liar Amy Goodman had to imply that on Friday by describing him as "George Stephanopoulos, the former Clinton aide". Left unstated was the reality, George and the Clintons are not close. George left the Clinton White House and went to ABC. Along the way, he wrote a book entitled All Too Human that we both think is garbage. We're not fans of George (as anyone reading our writing well knows) and one of us (C.I.) made a point of publicly snubbing Geroge two years ago. When he wrote that book, he offended a lot of people and he broke with the Clinton White House. His work on This Week (before he was a host) was not "Clinton friendly." To try to get the mob roused up by saying, "You know he was a part of the Clinton White House!" without telling them that he left under a cloud is lying. And that's all that Panhandle Media can do because all they are is pathetic liars, still jealous of their peers pulling down regular paychecks, working in real media, while they whine and whine some more, largely in obscurity.

"Great American Hypocrites" was the title of Amy Goodman's Friday segment and with Goodman you have the prime example of a LIAR SUPREME. Goodman has repeatedly brought on Barack supporters and members of his campaign without revealing that to her audience. It was only natural that she enlist again this week into lying in the service of her real master. That's not truth and justice, it's not the American way and it certainly isn't jorunalism. It's trickery and deceit, it's half-truths and outright lies, offered up as journalism. The actual post-debate story is first and foremost that the mob Barack has at his service was willing to threaten George for daring to ask questions. Don't expect Amy Goodman to ever tell you that story. Don't expect FAIR to send out an action alert on that. And never expect reality from the mouths of liars.

[Note, we intended to work Canterbury's Law into our review but a friend at Fox swears the network grasps it's a great show and that they're talking about giving it a "big" summer push. We fear it will actually be cancelled, but we've agreed to take him at his word. If you've never seen the show, episodes are available online for streaming -- free of charge. If Fox does give it a summer push, we'll review it then.]

The Symbionese Liberation Army endorses Barack!

"We just got sick of those punks from Weather Underground getting all the attention," explained Emily Harris, aka "Yolanda," as to why the Symbionese Liberation Army had decided to publicly endorse Barack Obama in his pursuit of the Democratic presidential nomination.

"We had a 'Bill' too," she insists referring to her former husband William Harris, aka "Teko," "and we worked really, really hard. We had movies made about us! Not documentaries, but like movies. We were like the first reality stars, it was us and the Loud family!"

Emilay Harris grew reflective and agitated as she recounted some of her groups 'activities.'

"We plugged those two [school] administrators. That was something. And we robbed Hibernia and I mean no one ever did anything that cool in Weather. We hit Crocker National Bank too. And, I mean, like chases are the big deal these days. Last week, I saw on CNN where this woman was being chased by the pigs in a rental car she stole and I mean the press was all over that. But like, we had shoot outs, dig it. Actual shoot outs. Forget namby pamby car chases, did you see what we did at Mel's Sporting Goods?"

When pressed as to why, other than Weather Underground's affinity for Barack, endorse in a presidential primary, Harris didn't hesitate in responding.

"He wants change! Man, the whole world wants change! And I think it's really cool how he doesn't pin it down, you know? I mean change to you might be a greener America, you know? To me, it might mean a national holiday where we all get to shoot pigs, you know? I mean, I'm all for change. Besides, I hear that damn Lynette Fromme is working on a Manson Family endorsement of Barack, so I figured I better get out in front of this before all our old fans are asking, 'Well where's the Symbionese on this?'"

Asked what good her group's endorsement might do the Senator from Illinois, Harris allowed, "Well, it's not like I can vote for him. I'm stuck here in prison, you dig? But I can get the word out. So like, consider this my communique from the prison world, the Symbionese Liberation Army supports Barack Obama. We support him way more than Weather. And we were way cooler than Weather."

When it was noted that Harris never mentioned Patty Hearst, she grew despondent, "Tanya, Tanya, Tanya. That's all anybody ever cares about. Look, we did a lot of great things before we kidnapped Tanya. And we did a lot of cool things after. I'm sick of her stealing the limelight. Print this, The Symbionese Liberation Army endorses Barack Obama. 9 out of 10 revolutionaries can't be wrong."

When reached for comment, Obama responded, "I can't say to somebody that he can't say that he thinks I'm a good guy."

[Yes, this is a humorous post; no, it's not true.]

Words from the 'Prophet' Michelle

"We're going to win Iowa -- Ohio. We're going to win Ohio just like we won Iowa. That's what I was trying to say." Check that crystal ball, Michelle, Hillary won with 54.20% of the vote.

"This isn't about experience." No, because Barack doesn't have any.

"For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country." We'll let you know when your country's proud of you. Tip, don't hold your breath waiting for that call.

America is "just downright mean." While Caroline schilled for your husband and compared him to her father, we're guessing this is part of the reason she didn't compare you to Jackie.

"Don't go into corporate America." Doesn't seem to have hurt her. The hospital she was working for paid her $115,889 the year before her husband entered the senate. They raised it to $317,000 as soon as he became a senator. She worked for The University of Chicago Medical Center where her job was to give the poor the heave-ho out of the hospital and send them to a charity ward elsewhere. (Warning to people of color, the hospital knew this was a "touchy" situation and bragged that because Michelle Obama was African-American, it mitgitated the criticism of the hospital's attacks on the poor.) But don't worry, the hospital can afford it, Barack worked on an earmark that got the hospital one million dollars in 2006.

10 Questions Charlie and George could have asked

Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos are under attack from the unruly mob that backs Barack Obama for daring to ask questions. If only they'd known what they'd be facing, they could have asked some really tough questions. Here are ten they should have considered.

1) A polygamous sect in Texas has been making the news for weeks. You're fond of citing your relatives in Kenya as proof of your foreign policy "experience," so why don't you explain polygamy to the American people and emphasize exactly how many multiple wives your grandfather and your father had. As a follow up, explain to us if that woman who keeps popping up on CNN that claims to be your grandmother but has no blood relation to you was the third, fourth or fifth wife of your grandfather.

2) Your parents never married. Not legally. Your father came to this country already married to one woman in Kenya. So the question is, did your mother know that before you were born? When did you find out that, in the eyes of America, your parents were never legally married and how did that make you feel?

3) How crazy is Michelle Obama? She's stated that mentioning your middle name is a "fear bomb" and "racist." We thought your middle names was "Hussein" and not "Sambo" so we're having a hard time figuring out how it's racist. As a follow up, if your middle name is racist, were your parents being racist by naming you after your father?

4) When the sideboob photos of Michelle were getting a lot of talk, we understand the two of you had strong words. What was the non-endearment you called Oprah in that semi-public conversation and would you call her that to her face? Is it really fair to blame Oprah for a dress your wife decided to wear?

5) You privately told friends that the trip to Virgin Islands, in the middle of a campaign, was needed to repair problems in your marriage. What were those problems?

6) Your record, such as it is, shows little interest in protecting the identifies of victims of sexual assault. But exactly where do you stand on domestic abuse?

7) Though you are obviously not a very bright man, you did graduate from Harvard. Why is it that, following your graduation, you couldn't get a real job? And why is it that you ended up in Chicago anyway?

8) You've lied so many times about your relationship with Antoin "Big Tony" Rezko, it's hard to keep track. The two of you were obviously much closer than you have ever let on so why don't you take this opportunity to explain to the American people your relationship? As a follow up, explain to the American people how you, the alleged 'change' agent, could be close with a man who was a slumlord, whose own tennants lived in your district and did so without heat, air conditioning or electricity?

9) You've similarly down played your relationship with Bernardine Dorhn and Bill Ayers. How many times have you had dinner with him and how many fundraisers did they stage for you? It wasn't just once, now was it? Bill Ayers has privately written about the conversations the two of you had and noted some of your comments regarding Weather Underground's activities. Those comments did not indicate that you found their actions "detestable." Why don't you explain to the American people what you really told him?

10) What is a grown man doing calling women "sweetie"? Do you go out of your way to come off sexist? As a follow up, having used homophobia in your campaign -- putting homophobes on stage at a campaign event, doing 'gay' jokes in a debate when AIDS testing came up -- exactly why should any American trust that you give a damn about gay rights?

Mental midget

"Chomsky has his reasons for his unwavering radicalism. He could care less about persuading swing voters not to vote for Bush, because he distrusts governments in general. He believes that real change comes about as a result of grass-roots movements, not the political process. Yet, even if he is waiting for Americans to rise up in mass movements, he’s not going to spark widespread protest unless he can get more people to embrace his message. And if he wants to convince Americans, he’s simply got to tone it down."

Katrina vanden Heuvel boy-pal and Obama campaign staffer Sam Graham-Felsen ("official campaign blogger!") demonstrating just how tiny the 'movement' brains are.

For the record, Sammy's not a Democrat. He's a Socialist. Again, if the Obama campaign had to count on Democrats, they'd have no support at all.

Ms. magazine welcomes homophobes

Dean admitted it was Brazile who objected most strenuously to a proposal put forward by gay Democrats to add GLBT delegates to affirmative action guidelines states follow when selecting those who attend the party's national convention:
Dean said some "influential individuals" within the DNC Black Caucus, such as Donna Brazile, opposed the plan because it was seen as "an affront to the civil rights movement."
"I wanted equal representation for gay and lesbian Americans," he said, "and I wanted to achieve it in a way that wasn't offensive to the history of the civil rights movement."

The above is referring to Big Momma's Mouth, Donna Brazile. Gutter Queen who ran to the press in 1988 to whisper that George H.W. Bush was having an affair and should have been kicked to the curb by the entire world. Trash gets taken to the curb, it's not allowed to publish and homophobes certainly aren't allowed to publish in Ms. magazine.

But for some strange reason, Donna Brazile is allowed to publish in Ms.


Look, we're all aware that Donna Brazile is most likely a lesbian. We're all aware that Andrew Sullivan outed her years ago. But a self-hating lesbian, it still a homophobe. And Brazile's hateful act doesn't belong at Ms.

Furthermore, a 48-year-old woman who will not answer the question of whether she is or is not a lesbian does not belong at Ms. The closet doors have swung open during Ms. lifetime's but even at the beginning of the magazine, lesbians were treated with respect. Donna Brazile's tired and shameful act is in direct contrast to everything that Ms. stands for. Or at least stood for prior to deciding that Brazile's stilted writing (closeted?) was just the thing the magazine needed.

Illustration of the ridiculous Brazile via Isaiah's The World Today Just Nuts "Message From a Heavy Weight".

The sad, sad decline of Robert Parry

As Susan at Random Thoughts has been repeatedly noting, Robert Parry is just a disgrace these days. Ourselves, we think he can't forgive Bill Clinton for not rehabilitating his (Parry's) reputation. See, Parry destroyed his own name pursuing stories and his nickle & dime operation is pretty much all he has left.

Having destroyed his own name in MSM circles, he seems determined to prove to Panhandle Media consumers that he can do the same in the begging medium. He writes:

Acting as an ABC News debate moderator, Stephanopoulos -- and Clinton -- also injected a false suggestion that Ayers had either hailed the 9/11 attacks or had used the occasion as a grotesque opportunity to call for more bombings.

What Land of Crazy does Parry now live in. George Stephanopoulos clearly stated, "And in fact, on 9/11 he was quoted in The New York Times saying, 'I don't regret setting bombs; I feel we didn't do enough'." Hillary Clinton clearly stated, "And if I'm not mistaken, that relationship with Mr. Ayers on this board continued after 9/11 and after his reported comments, which were deeply hurtful to people in New York, and I would hope to every American, because they were published on 9/11 and he said that he was just sorry they hadn't done more." Published on 9-11. Not after. Now we grasp that Parry hasn't been published (other than self-published) in some time; however, most Americans know if something appears in a paper published on September 11th, it took place before that day or wouldn't be in the paper.

The New York Times is, after all, called a "newspaper" -- not a "prediction paper."

It's a point lost on an idiot who was kicked to the curb because he couldn't let go of Iran-Contra and was striking some as "nutty." Nutty certainly describes the April 18th piece we're quoting from (thanks to a former colleague of Parry's for e-mailing it) which is entitled, "Are the Clintons Playing Joe McCarthy?"

In this nutty column, Parry tries to draw a line between questioning someone about public associations with McCarthyism. He really is an idiot. We all grasped that when he was attempting to predict what Hillary might do as president on Democracy Sometimes, but we really grasp it now.

McCarthyism was a governmental witchhunt and despite all the revisionary history, the reality is that two groups were targeted: gays and Communists. You don't hear about the gay aspect much, do you? Even though it led a man who served under Truman and Eisenhower to withdraw his nomination because he knew he wouldn't be confirmed (he instead joined the film industry as a censor and lived a closeted life -- his home connected to his lover's).

What's interesting about today is that gays don't live in the closet. A number of Communists still do -- even though there's no reason to.

But a governmental witchhunt is not the same as asking about someone's personal associations. William Ayers made the FBI's most wanted list. Sorry to break it to nutso Parry, but Ayers long ago gave up any right to not be considered a public figure.

Someone who wants to be the president of the United States of America is close with a person who was on the FBI most wanted list, someone who only escaped a lengthy prison sentence because the government broke the law to get evidence, and that's not news?

Robert Parry has become a pathetic joke.

A news media that ignored these issues would be failing at their job. The Weather Underground went underground because they were wanted by the law. That Barack can't explain his relationship with Bill Ayers doesn't mean the press was wrong to ask. Only a nutso like Robert Parry would think the press shouldn't ask about a presidential candidate's known relationship with a terrorist.

By Parry's 'logic,' anytime the press investigates someone's links to organized crime, they're practicing "McCarthyism!"

McCarthyism was the government going on a witch hunt.

The one who has no shame is a trained journalist like Robert Parry who doesn't understand the role of the press. The one who has no shame is Robert Parry, so in the tank for his dreamdate Barry Obama that he just can't remember what actual reporting is. Years ago, when he was pursuing a crackpot story that never panned out, a DC veteran warned him about being too quick to believe. These days, belief is all he has because facts walked out on him long ago.

Campaign Politics

We've got two political campaign things to highlight and they are both from the Hillary Clinton team. To be clear, Cynthia McKinney posting a video with no text really isn't inclusive and C.I. may have wasted time listening to quote from it but the rest of us aren't going to. To be clear, Matt Gonzalez, whom Ralph Nader has picked as his running mate, disgraced himself on Democracy Now.

First up Gonzalez stated that Barack Obama's remarks that offended many Americans were 'no big deal.' Ralph, you need as many voters as you can get if you're going to win. Tell Gonzalez to curb his San Francisco elitism at the door. His dismissal of the importance of Weather Underground also strikes us as strange considering your own attitude regarding that group. But most of all, we found it offensive that he didn't correct Liar Amy Goodman when she stated, "If you had won in 2003 against Gavin Newsom for mayor of San Francisco, you would have been the first Green mayor, the first Green Party mayor in the country." Let's see, Gonzalez' election was November 4, 2003. If he had been elected, would he have been the first Green Party mayor?

We don't know about first but we do know there was already a Green Party mayor before the November election. Propagandist and liar Amy Goodman has a real issue with facts. Meet Jason West who is a Green and was elected mayor. His term began on June 1, 2003 and, if his name seems familiar, you may remember that he allowed the marriage of same-sex couples in New Paltz, New York. Since West took office in June of 2003, pay attention Amy Goodman, had Matt Gonzalez been elected in November of 2003, Gonzales would not "have been the first Green mayor, the first Green Party mayor in the country." Gonzalez has left the Green Party to be Ralph's running mate but he surely know he wouldn't have been the first in the country and Amy Goodman damn sure should know about Jason West who garnered many headlines for his brave stand on same-sex marriage.

So Ralph, curb your running mate. You can't afford to alienate voters.

What we will note is Howard Wolfson's "HUBdate: 'Political Courage':"

Political Courage: The Pittsburgh-Tribune Review endorsed Hillary: "Clinton is far more experienced in government ...She has a real voting record on key issues. Agree with her or not, you at least know where she stands instead of being forced to wonder...Political courage is essential in a president. Clinton has demonstrated it; Obama has not." Read more.
Superdelegate Gains: Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) announced his support for Hillary, noting that "throughout the 1990s, Senator Clinton...had a proven record of economic growth and higher wages for America's working families."
Read more.
Poll Watch: Hillary regained the lead in the Gallup Poll Daily tracking poll. She currently holds a slim lead over Sen. Obama who led by 11 points only a week ago.
Read more.
Negative Attacks Against Hillary: Comm. Dir. Howard Wolfson released a memo yesterday responding to the Obama Campaign being on the attack in the last weekend of the PA primary:

"A major theme of Sen. Obama on the stump is that Hillary Clinton is running a negative campaign based on 'slash and burn politics' and that he represents a break from that kind of politics. In fact, in just the last 48-hours, Sen. Obama has flooded airwaves, radio, phone lines and mailboxes with negative and false attacks against Hillary." Read more.
In Case You Missed It: Sen. Obama is attacking Hillary Clinton about health care in a television advertisement with claims that have been widely discredited by experts...Hillary swiftly responded yesterday in York, PA: "I just heard that my opponent has put up an ad attacking my health care plan, which is kind of curious, because my plan covers everybody and his leaves out 15 million people -- just leaves them out in the cold."
Read more.
Previewing Today: Hillary continues counting down to the PA primary with "Solutions for Pennsylvania" rallies in Bethlehem, PA, Johnstown, PA, and State College, PA.
On Tap in PA: Hillary continues to barnstorm Pennsylvania in the final days of the primary. She hosts "Solutions for Pennsylvania" rallies in Scranton and Pittsburgh. On Primary Day, she will host an "Election Night Celebration" in Philadelphia.
Office Openings: "Gen. Jack Yeager, former commander of the state's Army National Guard, spoke to supporters and volunteers who gathered at Clinton's new [West Virginia] headquarters at 191 Summers St. to celebrate the opening"... The campaign also opened a new office in Terre Haute, IN.
Read more and more.
If You Read One Thing Today: "In PA., Late Deciders Could Lift Clinton"
Read More.

Also from the Clinton campaign, we'll note Peter Daou's "Take the Quiz: Who's Using the Republican Attack Playbook?:"

One of the enduring myths of the Democratic primary campaign is that Hillary has been "throwing the kitchen sink" at Senator Obama while he runs a hopeful, unifying campaign. As I wrote in a blog post recently, the reality is that Sen. Obama and his top officials have been throwing the sink, the stove, the plates and the garbage can at Hillary.
Whether you've been following this race closely or you just tuned in, see if you can figure out who's been using the Republican attack playbook.
Take the

Dumb Ass of the Week: David Corn

When it came time for questions for Wolfson, I asked an obvious one: Did Hillary Clinton believe that it had been appropriate in 2001 for President Bill Clinton to have pardoned two members of the Weather Underground as he left office?

Like the shortest guy in the locker room (short you know where) refusing to wear a towel, David Cornnuts (David Corn) just had to strut around to provide laughter. He had already disgraced himself on a media conference call with the Clinton campaign, but that wasn't enough for him. He had to go and pen "Clinton Bashes Obama's Weathermen Connection, But What About Her Own?" for that crackpot journal Mother Jones.

C.I. explained it Thursday night and made it real simple providing links to the list of people whose sentences Bill Clinton commuted and to the people whom Bill Clinton pardoned.

Despite David Cornnuts theatrics, Bill Clinton did not pardon the two women.

Alleged journalist David Corn couldn't let facts interfere with his latest bit of slobbering over Barack. Cornnuts, we get it, you found your true love, your true love. May you be very happy together and bear him multiple children. If you ever return to the world of journalism, let us know.

The roundtable

This is a roundtable done Friday night that appeared at all the community sites of those participating. Since Third's Dona, Ava and C.I. participated, we're reposting it in full.

Rebecca: I'm Rebecca of Sex and Politics and Screeds and Attitude and tonight we've got a roundtable. Participating are Betty of Thomas Friedman Is a Great Man,C.I. of The Common Ills and The Third Estate Sunday Review, Kat of Kat's Korner (of The Common Ills), Elaine of Like Maria Said Paz, Ruth of Ruth's Report, Marcia SICKOFITRDLZ, Trina of Trina's Kitchen and The Third Estate Sunday Review's Dona and Ava. The Third Estate Sunday Review also includes Jim, Jess and Ty. They aren't participating but in case they're mentioned, FYI. For the same reason, Cedric of Cedric's Big Mix, Mike of Mikey Likes It! and Wally of The Daily Jot are being noted now. In case they are mentioned. C.I. and Ava are responsible for typing this and we can knock out those links right at the start and not require them later on. This is a rush transcript. We're going to be talking about a number of topics including the prospective presidents, Iraq and more.I actually did some planning ahead of time. I have questions from e-mails that we'll hopefully get to. In addition, in honor of Tuesday night's debate we have two hot seats. Everyone was informed of that ahead of time and asked to vote. The 'winners'? Elaine and C.I. As moderator, I wasn't eligible. So I will periodically go to them, or that's the plan. Betty's participating by phone and I think that gets all the background out of the way. First hot seat moment. I have a number of readers at my site who hate my guts and enjoy e-mailing me to tell me just how much they hate me. Yes, they are all men. And I generally ignore them but I e-mailed them to inform them of this debate. TrickRick self-describes as a White male, 23 y.o., Republican. He states, "We" meaning the GOP "will wipe the floor with BO" Barack Obama "but the only reason you're for Hillary is because she's a woman. My question is are you ready to lose?"

Elaine: C.I. is pointing to me. If I was just supporting Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary today because she was a woman, I would've voted for her in my state primary. I didn't. I voted Super Tuesday for Mike Gravel due to his past work regarding the Pentagon Papers and ending the draft. Best of luck to him in his new party but it's not a left party and I won't be supporting him in the general election. The non-stop attacks on Hillary Clinton bothered me. I had made the decision, weeks ahead of time, that Mike Gravel stood up in the past and, if nothing else, my vote said, "Thank you. It was appreciated." I've called out Hillary Clinton at my site before for any number of things. I suffer no illusions that she's perfect. I also know she's not the anti-Christ. I also know that there are standards and they weren't applied. I also know what blatant sexism is and am happy to list the 'left' participating in that. It would include "There's no such thing as global warming!" crackpot Alexander Cockburn, the pathetic Matthew Rothschild who thought a word that rhymes with "runt" was apparently delightful, the insane Robert Parry who claims to be a journalist but thinks he can resort to some form of spousal tea leaf reading to peer into Hillary's soul and see things with no backing, David Corn who will let no fact interfere with his need to rip apart Hillary, the twin punks Ari of the Nation who think the thing for a 'left' magazine to do is repeat false charges from the 90s that the right-wing started . . . It's a very long list and along with these evil and overt sexist, you need to include the bystanders. The ones who sat on the sidelines and did nothing. Include Ms. magazine on that list and the laughable lie that they can't cover a race because it would hurt their tax status. I don't know which is worse, that lie or that they hired a homphobe.Donna Brazile's little public snit fit against gays and lesbians means her ass needs to be fired. Let me be clear, Ms. wasn't saved repeatedly so that it could be this -- on the sidelines or publishing a homophobe. Dona Brazile needs to be fired. And a number of us who have given big money have decided next time Ms. is in trouble, tough s**t. We didn't support that magazine, we didn't donate all that money, so that they could ignore women running for president. But that's what they've done, that's what they're doing. And don't even get me started on Bill Moyers. Ava and C.I. have documented how he has refused to explore sexism but every other damn week it's time for him to wallow in his own White guilt and pretend to explore racism. I blame the ones on the sidelines. I'm not standing on the sidelines. I'm for Hillary and I can give you a hundred reasons and, trust me, the fact that she's a woman doesn't even enter into it for my support. The fact that she is a woman and that Ms. won't explore her candidacy does piss me off. But my support for her is not predicated on her historical run. I was able to note that history being made and not support her earlier. I was able then, as a non-supporter, to do that. Some may support her because she's a woman and if so more power to them. Candidates have been selected for far less worthy reasons.

Rebecca: C.I.?

C.I.: Well I could repeat what Elaine just said or I could expand on it and since she did such a wonderful job, I'll expand on it. Elaine and I honestly planned to sit this out. Electoral politics wasn't anything we were interested in writing about. We assumed that Hillary would rise or fail on her own. We assumed there would be some level of fairness. We assumed that Barack Obama would be probed. We actully assumed that if that happened in depth -- and it still hasn't -- he would be out of the race. He's not qualified and he's a fraud and Elaine and I know that very well. I assumed the race would come down to Clinton, Edwards and Biden. And, of the three of them, I assumed the battle would be between Edwards and Biden who represent two different aspects of the Democratic Party. Hillary might or might not have benefitted from that but that's what I assumed would happen. I wasn't following it. I was paying attention to Iraq. I had no idea about Iowa until after the caucus. Now Real Media, the kind who are trained, has a million and one excuses for why they didn't probe Barack. And Ava and I can back up the fact that they promised over and over that they would publicly. On chat show after show. It's coming. We're going to do it, they'd say. But they really didn't. America still doesn't know Barack Obama. Now that's Real Media. Panhandle Media? They claimed they had standards and that they were higher standards than Real Media. We saw something completely different, didn't we? We saw KPFA do two hours after the Texas debate, two hours of allegedly free speech radio, where every guest was pro-Obama. Not only were they pro-Obama, they had already endorsed Obama. But Larry Bensky and KPFA didn't feel the need to inform the audience of that. Probably not a good idea to inform the audience that you've rigged the show before you started broadcasting. Amy Goodman is disgusting filth. Ava and I will be taking on that beggar in Sunday's commentary. But she did 'roundtables' where no one was supporting a candidate. The guests all came to the conclusion that Hillary was Pure Evil. Of course, disclosing that your guests are supporting Barack would have allowed the audience to factor in all the Hillary hatred. Frances Fox Piven endorses him, then goes on Democracy Now! and is an 'objective' and 'impartial' guest who just happens to think Hillary's done poorly on something. Listeners and viewers had a right to know FFP had already publicly endorsed Barack Obama. Amy Goodman likes to talk a lot about Michael Gordon and Judith Miller's 'ethics,' but she has none of her own. She flaunted that again this week but Ava and I are taking that on, so I'll bite my tongue here.

Rebecca: Elaine?

Elaine: I didn't realize we were going back and forth. I hope this isn't boring for anyone. I meant participating but reading as well. Let me pick up with Amy Goodman. People were calling me, friends, saying, "I've told C.I." That Amy Goodman was willingly slanting the show. C.I. was giving Amy the benefit of the doubt. I wouldn't, she's a total fraud. It's always great when a beggar grew up 'nicely' and enriches herself but continues begging. But Ava and C.I. both were hearing the warnings. Then, the week before Goody created her Geraldo moment, how proud her pathetic family must be, a mutual friend presented Ava and C.I. with proof of how close Melissa Harris-Lacewell and Goody were. Melissa Harris-Lacewell had just been on Goody's show. Goody had presented her as a professor not vested in any candidate. That was a lie. Melissa was actively campaiging for Obama and had been for months and Amy Goodman knew that. But Amy didn't disclose it to her audience. Not only did she not disclose it, she allowed Melissa to lie to viewers by bragging -- as a disinterested party -- on a speech by Barack. Now I want everyone to absorb that because that's the sort of thing that gets people fired. Amy Goodman knew Melissa was part of the Obama campaign. She didn't tell her audience. When Melissa bragged about Barack, Amy still didn't tell them. Now tell me what world Amy Goodman thinks she lives in that what she did, that her actions, are allowed? They aren't allowed. That's not journalism and she can never lecture anyone on ethics without being laughed at by real media because she is hypocrite.

Rebecca: C.I.?

C.I.: Like Elaine, I assumed we'd speak a bit and then you'd move on. Well what followed that -- the immediate following was I was sick to my stomach -- was that Ava, Elaine and I did 'reporting' -- we started working everyone we knew, we started speaking to people and we started finding out just how deep this goes. And where it's coming from. And my attitude today is, "If I burn your Red Playground down, oh well." This is a campaign driven by closet Communists. They have no business in a Democratic primary.

Rebecca: Trina's nodding so I'll toss to her.

Trina: My father smelled it from the start. My father's a Socialist. Never been in the closet on that. Never hidden even when it cost him. Who are the ones who made sure he paid a price during the witch hunt years? The ones who betrayed him were closet Communists. And that's because the rats always save their own asses. That's a rat by defintion. For awhile, there was a big rumor going around that Barack was a Socialist. Barack's a corporatist Democrat. But his benefactors were feeling like they weren't getting their due and they didn't like the shadows so they started whispering that lie. But the mania, the devotion, the whole thing had cult of personality written all over it and today people may, for example, criticize the fact that it built up around Putin but it built up because that system requires a cult of personality. Or it requires from those people. They are the same ones that created "Uncle Joe" -- and refused to later get honest about Stalin's crimes. Maybe this will change in this country because of the young. But, I mean, I knew this growing up. I knew these people, these rats, they lived in our neighborhood. They were authoritarian. They needed a daddy figure. And each daddy had to destroy the previous one. That's one of the reasons that it falters today. They disown to embrace the newly selected leader. They run off a Trotsky, they rewrite history. They need that daddy. And that daddy must be supreme. And we would see their hand picked candidates running for local office -- sometimes labor offices -- and we would know just from the campaign, just from the slogans, just from the fact that a new 'man of the people' had sprung up and the devotionals and the testimonials, just from that we'd know who was backing this candidate. We'd find out we were correct at some point, but just the way the campaign was being run, we'd know. So it's not a surprise to me.

Betty: I hope I'm not stepping on anyone who was about to talk but think about what Trina just said about the way those campaigns were run and tell me she didn't just describe the Obama campaign.

Dona: I was actually thinking the exact same thing.

Marcia: I agree and, if I can take the conversation in a different direction, and you know I can, I'm a lesbian. I'm out of the closet. I can't imagine the self-hatred involved in placing yourself in a political closet. Myself, I have no respect for any gay person who stays in the closet. At some point, you need to step out or admit you're a fraud and a fake. So I really don't have any respect for these closeted Communists. David Corn's not a Communist, here's where I go off topic --

Rebecca: That's fine we'll probably return to this later.

Marcia: Well I mean what kind of sick mind thinks that setting bombs and serving on the board of Wal-Mart is the same thing?

Ava: I need to step in here. This topic isn't a problem, pursuing it, isn't a problem with C.I. or I but we're addressing it Sunday in our commentary so we're not going to be able to say much on it if anything at all. Just to explain that.

Marcia: Sure. To me that's the perfect example of how biased Panhandle Media has been. You can argue the complexities all you want and I have no problem listening to them. However, at the very basic level, Weather Underground set boms. They wanted an armed revolution that would overthrow the country.They broke laws. What did Hillary do? A new member of the Wal-Mart board, before Bill was president so we're going way back into the past, focused on areas she thought she could have an impact on? I mean, do we all get that? Do we get that Hillary's being slammed for not using her junior position on the board to go after every flaw in Wal-Mart? And we're talking about things that weren't even known as flwas at the time. Two decades after she joined the board, we're holding her accountable for everything the company did?

Betty: Well, let's offer that perspective. You're talking the Reagan and Poppy Bush presidency when jobs were in decline and times were tough. Wal-Mart was a job creator. It wasn't perfect but, like Marcia's saying, what the left emphasizes about Wal-Mart now wasn't big news then. What was she supposed to do? I don't really understand that and, if David Corn wrote that, he is an idiot. He's made a non-stop embarrassment of himself for some time now and I don't read him. Ruth's ignored him because he lies on NPR.

Ruth: Oh, does he. I thought he was a journalist. He slants everything. He is not supposed to be on as a columnist. He is presented as a reporter. How about telling the facts then? I have no respect for him and the snapshot today is hilarious. Mr. Corn insisting "everyone knows" that Bill Clinton gave a pardon to two members of the Weather Underground when President Clinton never did any such thing. He should probably hang his head in shame. He was shouting in that conference. He came off not just like a jerk, but like an ignorant jerk and, sadly, that has happened far too often lately.

Rebecca: It really has and I actually have him in my prep work. He's been working overtime to lie for Samantha Power. Was Power fired, C.I.?
C.I.: No. Barack should have fired her. He didn't. I was told that by friends of Power and by friends in the Obama campaign. Samantha Power resigned. She did not resign strictly for calling Hillary Clinton a "monster." She also insulted Gordon Brown. Which was a big deal in England although you didn't hear about it from Corn or John Nichols --

Rebecca: Let me stop you for a second. You noted that John Nichols in his sob-fest for Sammy Power LIED and stated that Power knew Hillary "for years" and that wasn't true. You quoted her on The Charlie Rose Show and in October 2007 stating she'd only met Hillary once. For the record, The Nation has never corrected their LIE.

Ava: Do they ever? Come on, they never corrected their lie about John Kerry where they slammed him for saying something at the DNC convention that he never said at the DNC convention and they knew about that lie, the writer of the piece even admits it's wrong. But they never corrected it. They just lie. They have no standards, they just lie and they lie again. And they don't seem to grasp that all these lies build and build until no one believes a word they say.

Elaine: Well look at who's in charge. I can remember her pissing her panties and lying about that. Foul, foul odor -- you had to wonder what the child was drinking -- and she'd lie and say she hadn't.

C.I.: We are off topic. I'm laughing because it is true. But, back to the topic. Samantha Power couldn't stop spilling the beans. Rebecca's referring to David Corn writing that 'everyone knows' that Obama saying he's going to end the illegal war is just a "proposal" and not a "plan." Everyone knows that, Corn? Just like everyone knows there were pardons for Susan Rosenberg and Linda Evans? When there were no pardons? David Corn's made himself a joke, he's far from alone, but it's embarrassing to see. I'd be very happy to go through life without calling Corn out. I know the thing you're talking about Rebecca, it was a post to his own website/blog. I just ignored it. But I'm not going to ignore the Constitution and that's not an option with me. I thought he was smarter. I mean, it's stupid to write about "pardons" without researching to find out if pardons actually took place. But to be so arrogant about it when you are so wrong. I mean, the next time he calls in, instead of yelling over the phone, he needs to immediately apologize and Mother Jones needs to issue a correction.

Dona: Can I talk about corrections a minute? Years ago, Ava and C.I. had nothing to write about one weekend and an actress called them, a friend of their's, who had been on a program and the program had turned a rapist into a boyfriend. They wrote the commentary on that. And then it turned out that he was drugged or something, I don't remember. They heard about it as soon as the commentary went up. Now, just so you know, we're working at The Third Estate Sunday Review starting Saturday night until we drop. We were all going to bed when the phone rang on that. Ava and C.I. didn't blow it off. They stayed up and worked three hours on a new commentary. As soon as they knew it was a mistake, they wrote a note at the posted piece explaining that. They then rewrote and posted every half hour as they finished the piece. They were completely transparent. They took full responsibility for it. And that's what you do. Mistakes will be made. That's a given, my degree's in journalism, it's a given. But what blows your credibility is refusing to make corrections.

Kat: I agree with Dona and to talk about that, there was a difference of opinion. Jim wanted a correction note at the end and thought they were making too big of a deal out of it. But Ava and C.I. acknowledged their mistake. They rewrote the entire piece. The opening they wrote acknowledges the mistake and then they explore the plot twists. The piece actually was stronger and that's got to be in part because they owned their mistake.

Dona: And I'm trying to remember the title. Ava and C.I. won't because Jim comes up with the titles to Ava and C.I.'s commentaries. And our archives at Third are so screwed up. I can't even remember the show.

Ava: Veronica Mars.

C.I.: "TV: We're losing ground and now is not the time for silence." We actually did write that title. I don't remember if it was the original title or not.

Ava: But we made a mistake. As Dona pointed out, it does happen. And the test is how you handle that. Do you do so honestly or do you do it dishonestly? I agree with Kat that it was stronger because of the entire process. But I also know I said to C.I., "I don't know if I'm writing another one." That had nothing to do with the mistake. It had to do with having to stay up throughout the rewriting of that piece. We didn't just insert a correction. We completely rewrote that piece. Because we did, Jim argued that the correction, which we put at the top in all caps, could be dropped. He said it could be added to his note to the readers. But our feeling was that it was our mistake and we owned it. And I think you saw Hillary do that in the debate Tuesday by the way but I have to bite my tongue there because that's one of the topics we have on our list that we're hoping to address Sunday. I can say that if you think you're infallible, you've got problems. I remember C.I. freaking out in a cab one day. I'll let Elaine pick up that story if she wants.

Elaine: Well, C.I. called my office and I was between sessions. Sunny hollers, and she's not a screamer, for me to grab the phone. Because C.I. was so upset. I pick up and C.I. asks, "What is Dorn's first name?" I'm thinking, "Dorn who?" It was Bernardine. C.I. and I both know Bernardine and have known her for years. Some radio program --

C.I.: Pacifica's From The Vault.

Elaine: Thank you, I didn't listen, had an announcer repeatedly call her "Bernadine." And C.I. was thinking, "I've insulted her for decades by getting her name wrong. I don't even know her name." While I'm saying, "No, you've got it right," Bernardine's speaking and says, "This is Bernardine." I say, "See." But I mean, C.I. doesn't operate under a "I'm right!" philosophy. C.I. never has a problem saying, "I was wrong." And when someone's so sure of themselves, like that announcer was to that Women's History program back in March, C.I. will immediately go to, "I must be wrong." And I know the argument there will be, "Well, they do have a staff and they're just compiling tapes so if they're saying 'Bernadine,' maybe they're right?"

Kat: And when C.I. wrote the thing Thursday night, Ava and C.I. had already covered this topic in the morning and C.I. was still making sure it was right -- how there were no pardons -- even though C.I. knew it for a fact.

Marcia: If I can add to that, I once corrected C.I. in an e-mail. This was like March 2005. I got an e-mail back saying, "I'm so sorry. I'll fix it and note the correction and credit you." I was, this was before my blog obviously, pleased. I felt really good. That's what I expect when I'm reading something. The sad part comes after. I feel so good and mention it to my mother and she says, "Marcia, you're wrong." And I was wrong. I had to immediately e-mail C.I. with a heading of "911! You were right!" But I didn't have a problem admitting to that and, obviously, C.I. had no problem owning a mistake that, it turned out, wasn't one.

Dona: What ticks me off is when you go to the trouble of explaining how something's not an error -- I don't do this anymore and don't do it because it was Pig Male Journalist the last time and I said never again -- and they still want to argue. There have been court cases that Ty and I -- we read the bulk of the e-mails at Third -- have had to research because someone's convinced that Elaine and C.I. are wrong. So we research and find out they were right, provide the section of the majority opinion and someone still wants to argue. But in terms of Piggy, I went out of my way to be nice --

Kat: Always a mistake.

Dona: Agree. And he writes back to Jim. Not to me and basically calling me "emotional." Look, Middle Aged Man, if I want to get emotional, I'll tell you what I think of you. I went out of my way to be kind to you even though there is NO defense for a man who beats a woman. A man who beats a woman repeatedly, throughout their marriage. And, for anyone who doesn't know this, Jim and I are a couple. So it wasn't just offensive that he's running to Jim about how 'emotional' I am, it was stupid.

Rebecca: Men or women, who are the worst in e-mails?

Betty: Men. No woman has ever called me the n-word. No woman has ever threatened me.

Ruth: To use the word Dona was accused of being, "emotional," disagreements in e-mails I have received from men have been vrey "emotional." Women who disagree with me tend to write a basic, matter of fact e-mail. Men can be very threatening. Wally was really helpful to me when I started my site and has been since. But when I got the worst e-mail I have ever received, he listened and did not try to fix it, just let me vent, and then explained to me that Cedric gets screamed at in e-mails and he never gets those. He and Cedric are doing joint-posts and the same men, writing both of them to complain, call Cedric vile names but with Wally act like the picture of maturity.

Betty: It's the race. It really is. I mean Marcia had to delete over 30 comments to her Kovco post because the people were using the n-word as they screamed at her or Keesha and Latrice, community members who had left comments. And if you talk to Cedric -- who has written about Kovco and written with the exact position Marcia expressed -- he gets that in private. Cedric allows comments at his site and his mirror site. But they won't call him the n-word at his site. They'll call Marcia that, they'll call her a "lez" and other things. I can only imagine what her e-mails must be like.

Marcia: They're actually not as bad as the comments I deleted to the post where I was defending Judy Kovco, the mother of Jake Kovco, the first Australian soldier to be killed in Iraq.

Kat: Well we all know the story of Ava and C.I. In January 2005, The Third Estate Sunday Review starts up. For three or four weeks, all of them -- Jim, Dona, Ty, Jess, Ava and C.I. -- are writing the TV commentaries. No threatening e-mails. Some people disagree but no cursing, no threats. Ava and C.I. start doing those all by themselves and it's not announced that it's just them. Still no problem. The first time Jim gives credit and notes they are writing it by themselves, e-mails start pouring in with threats. There are certain categories of people that apparently allow for attacks.

Rebecca: Kat's right because that is the perfect example. No problems when everyone was writing. No problems when readers thought everyone was writing, the second it's identified that Ava and C.I. are writing them, it's non-stop attacks. There's not a better example. I find that in my e-mails as well, by the way. And why not when the males of Panhandle Left -- and the women -- have declared open season on Hillary Clinton and will tell any lie, use any smear, to attack? Trina?

Trina: I really don't get a lot of hate mail. If you need a lot of men, or a certain type of men, I may drive them away automatically due to the fact that I'm offering recipes. Of the small number of vile e-mails I have received, I believe all but one was from a man. My biggest problem is a lot go into the spam folder and I always forget to check that so I'm writing someone back two weeks late because I never saw their e-mail until I happened to remember to check the spam folder.

Dona: Can I say something here regarding e-mails?

Rebecca: Go for it. I think I know what you're going to say.

Dona: Don't ask for a highlight if you've slammed Hillary since the start of 2008 unless you've also slammed Barack Obama. I don't mean you've smeared Hillary and said, "Maybe Bambi's really not a peace candidate?" That's not equal standards. I'm getting damn tired of all the e-mails to Third begging for links, especially from third parties, who think they can slam Hillary and then beg us for a link. Reality is the bulk of the beggars have never done s**t for Third. They've never linked to us. But they regularly ask for links.

Ruth: I agree with Dona and understand this was actually a discussion.

Dona: It was. Everyone helps out at Third and we thank them for that. But, at the end of the day, Jim, Ty, Jess, Ava, C.I. and I am responsible. So we did have a discussion and our feeling is that we've done enough to help others at this point. I'm talking about repeat e-mailers. And we also held to a standard. We've explored Hillary. We were doing it in real time. Third exists as a corrective. When the whole world's bashing Hillary, when we're not highlighting your site if you're doing that. We're not interested. There has been no equal standard and we're sick of it.

Trina: I agree with that. I have been very tough on Hillary and I am glad I was. Because I was using a standard. I applied to all the candidates. Now? I've played fair. I'm not going to lie for Hillary -- who I am supporting and who I voted for on Super Tuesday -- but you're b.s. nonsense that you rehash the same points while excusing Barack, I'm not interested. I don't even reply to those people. I just delete their e-mails.

Betty: There was a topic raised in the roundtable we did for the gina & krista round-robin this week. I thought we could talk about that but I feel like Ava should address it because of Jess.

Ava: Sure. Jess, my boyfriend, brought it up. It was bubbling under but no one was mentioning it. Jess is a Green Party member. I think that's all the backstory anyone needs. But Barack Obama made comments that offended many Small Town Americans. This week, Amy Goodman interviewed Matt Gonzalez whom Ralph Nader has picked as his running mate. Always eager to advance Barack's political campaign, Amy asked Matt about Barack's offensive comments. Matt Gonzalez said it wasn't a big deal. That sets it up. Jess isn't going to be angry with any comment made here, he thinks Matt Gonzalez needs to apologize, so say what you want, no one's going to offend him.

Betty: Okay, well he's not here and none of us want to hurt Jess. I thought that was the most stupid thing in the world. I agree with Jess that Matt Gonzalez needs to apologize and, if he can't, I don't know where Ralph Nader thinks he has the right to expect any votes.

Elaine: I have group on Thursday nights so, unless the roundtables are done at another time, I never participate. If it's okay, I'll comment first?

Rebecca: Go for it.

Elaine: Well Matt Gonzalez may think it's no big deal. That may be his opinion. But it really doesn't matter what Matt Gonzales thinks. What matters is that people are offended. Ralph will need every vote he can get. I wouldn't be so quick to assume that Ralph won't get those votes. If Barack gets the nomination, a number of Democratic voters will go elsewhere or leave the spot blank. Ralph Nader is known for his work on issues that impact the lives of working Americans. He also has name recognition. That was a stupid remark by Matt Gonzalez. It was already known that Barack's statements had offended and for Matt, running on the Nader-Gonzales ticket, to interject himself in there and say what he did was offensive. And it was stupid because the problem was known. If I can add something else, it is not the "Nader/Gonzalez" ticket. It is the "Nader-Gonzalez" ticket. Otherwise, you're implying the ticket is "Nader or Gonzalez." I'm sorry to bring that up but we all use "Nader-Gonzalez." However, the campaign's site uses "Nader/Gonzales" and I have received e-mails on that.

Rebecca: It's like the polls by CBS and the New York Times. They do that as well, implying it's a CBS or NYT poll. No, it's a joint poll. You use a dash. I believe the Washington Post uses a dash for their joint polls with ABC News. But what Elaine said is exactly true. A third party candidate needs votes and you're not going to get them by defending comments that have already been seen as offensive. In fact, you are saying -- Matt Gonzalez was saying -- "You're feelings do not matter." I don't think a vice presidential candidate is picked to run off voters. It was a mistake.

Betty: It really was and when Jess brought it up, everyone came up alive. We're not noting Ralph until Monday -- community wide -- at the earliest. The campaign's not being noted. C.I. imposed that for The Common Ills and Jess carried it over to Third. It has offended people and no one's promoting Ralph right now as a result. Cynthia McKinney could be promoted but probably won't be because all she's offered is a video at her campaign site. And let me speak for Hilda and other hard of hearing and deaf community members, a video with no text may as well not go up. Whatever message you think you're conveying, you're adding an addition one: "You don't matter if you can't hear." Hilda's Mix has really opened my eyes to how many barriers exist for the disabled.

Ruth: I would agree with you on that. I really think Hilda's done an amazing job. And now there are two Hilda's Mixes. There's the newsletter in text and there is an audio version. I think all the newsletters add to the community but the focus on the disabled really has made a big impression on me.

Kat: I think it has on all of us. And what's really amazing to me is that we've got two wars going on, going on for years, and veterans are returning disabled and there's so little awareness of that in the press coverage. To focus on hearing issues, ringing of the ears and loss of hearing are very much a part of the Iraq War and where is the coverage? I mean, C.I. can and does cover the Congressional hearings. Where are the news outlets? Where is The Nation? They've got time to smear Hillary several times each day but do they offer anything of value ever? Is that what they want to be remembered for?

Rebecca: Good point. Hot seat time. There were questions for everyone from Weston who didn't provide his age or stats even after I had asked. But for the two of you. Elaine, I'll start with you. "She never writes a word about her life. I would assume she's been married. I don't know why everything has to be such a big secret. Is she the Queen of England?"

Elaine: Yes, I am the queen of the England. What the heck kind of question is that? I mean how tired is that phrase? I don't write about my personal life. Rebecca has written about her personal life before. That's her comfort area. I have no interest in putting my personal life online. If I have been married, if I have children, I will never write about it. I really have nothing more to say on the issue. I don't talk about my personal life outside of my circle of friends. I've acknowledged that I'm in a relationship with Mike. Mike respects my privacy and doesn't blog about that at his site. He'll mention it or me but he's not blogging about us.

Rebecca: Okay. Weston notes that he knows C.I. was married -- "at least I know that. But I have a problem. What's with the not talking about religion?"

C.I.: Like Elaine, there are topics I'm not going to discuss.

Rebecca: That's it?

C.I.: You can ask any question, I don't have to answer. Which, for the record, Barack Obama, if he was so offended in the debate Tuesday could have done.

Rebecca: Well then let me substitute. Something was pulled from today's snapshot, so will you talk about that?

C.I.: Sure. That was only pulled as a result of space. I'm assuming we're back to the closet topic, right?

Rebecca: Yes.

C.I.: We, this was what was in the snapshot, will highlight Socialists and Communists. I have no problem with that. We're a site for the left. But we don't highlight closeted types. I explained that Ava and I grew tired of one man and we don't include him. Ava noted it was going to blow up in everyone's face and we weren't taking part in that. The man is a Communist and he hides that to the public. We don't include him on the list of war resisters. He's really not one though some other sites count him as one. His story is fake. He was against the illegal war and signed up. Why did he do that? I think we're all smart enough to figure that out. Despite the fact that he has considerable advanced education, he tries to play like he doesn't and tries to speak as if he's a high school drop out. I'm not putting forward the lie -- any of those lies. Ava publicly noted, at Third, two years ago that we're not getting behind that nonsense. We knew he was a member of the Communist Party. We weren't bothered by that. Then we heard the interview where he was playing like he was politically naive and playing like he wasn't a college graduate and that was it. Go tell your lies somewhere else. Go advance your crap somewhere else. There is not a "no Communist" policy at The Common Ills. They are part of the left, we're a left site. But I'm not interested in closeted types. And I may start doing that across the board.

Marcia: Carl Webb is a radical and he's open about it and someone who does get highlighted but I want to toss this in, I'm not highlighting MySpace for anyone, I'm not signing up for Facebook or highlighting Facebook. I want to mention that because I did get a Facebook something from him. I respect him. I don't respect Facebook. I get Facebook stuff in my e-mails all the time. I don't believe in that and am not taking part in it. I believe that's true of all sites. In terms of what C.I.'s saying, if they had stayed out of electoral politics, the closeted types, that would be one thing.

Trina: But they didn't stay out. They lied and called themselves "progressives," or presented themselves as "Democrats." They're not. And I agree that if you're endorsing a candidate in a primary, it needs to be your own political party's primary or you need to be upfront about who you are politically.

Kat: That's just basic. It's political primary. If you're not a member of the primary, butt the hell out. The general election, as C.I. notes, is open to all. There's no reason for non-party members to be endorsing.

Dona: I think that's true. I -- it's basic. But if they were open about who they were their endorsements would not only be meaningless to many people, they would also taint Barack. His "Democratic" support among the gasbags isn't Democratic. But if they don't present themselves as Democrats, then people would be making this very point: "It's not your party, butt the hell out." It really is amazing how they're trying to subvert and control the Democratic Party. If they're allowed to, they'll destroy it the same way they splintered their own party.

Rebecca: This has been a long roundtable and we'll probably wrap up in a second so I want to give everyone a chance to bring in anything on this that they want.

Ava: I'll go next because I want to touch on what Dona was saying as well as the point C.I. made. It is a Democratic primary. Not a Democrat? Stay out of it. It doesn't concern you so there's no reason for you to be endorsing. You're a liar and I have no respect for you. In terms of the non-war resister. I'm not going to be around for when that explodes. Someone against the Iraq War chooses to enlist and then does attention getting stunts while telling the world that he's apolitical and he's a member of the Communist Party? I'm not interested in your 'work.' Trickery and deceit do not interest me but, no surprise, the closet cases would resort to that. They've build up Barack through trickery and deceit, it's all they have to offer. In terms of the 'war resister,' when he lies he risks everyone being seen as a liar if he's exposed. I'm sick of it. There are war resisters of all political types. The ones who aren't closeted -- regardless of what they belong to -- add to the fabric of the movement. The ones who are closeted and go around lying risk the entire movement being called liars.

Ruth: Which is the damage that could result from it. And that same damage could result from their promotion and endorsement of Obama. In either case, they brought it on themselves. No one forced them into closets.

Betty: I'm going to grab that and go somewhere else. The closeted Communists think the Civil Rights are their story. They think, these White Communists, that they gave Black people a gift. They didn't. We fought for our rights. I have no problem giving Communists -- especially Black Communists -- credit for their part in the Civil Rights struggle, but there is a preening attitude about some. You saw it during Jena 6 as well. You saw the lie that reduced it to a town with all the Blacks on one side and all the Whites on the other. As Ava and C.I. pointed out ("Stop the madness!" cry the Goodmans, "You first," reply Ava and C.I. ), that wasn't the case and they did it by pointing to what Amy and David Goodman left out of their book but what Amy Goomdan broadcast on her show. I think the White, closeted Communists think they're going to "give" Black people another gift: Barack! That really is all they have to latch onto, the Civil Rights struggle. But they go back to that over and over, the early days, before MLK emerges. They seem to think they birthed MLK. They didn't. Nor did they give Black people rights. We fought for the rights we have. I don't know how clear I'm being here because I'm condensing many points but my point is that White, closeted Communists may think Black people are tickled pink -- or is it Red? -- that they're doing all this for us. They're not. And they need to get off their high horses because no one considers them an "honorary Black" or even honest.

Marcia: That's such a strong point. You really can trace it back there. These good Whites, these northern Whites, so helpful, saving us Black people from the mean White folk. Reality is that Black people fought for their rights. Reality is the Black people died doing so. Reality is MLK was interested in addressing the racism in the north but that offended some people. Reality is that you have your own problems in your "People's Republic of" whatever. I think we anyone who paid attention grasped which Whites were Communists and which weren't by the way they amplified their lies. Some were at least honest about it like that White woman going on her speaking tour to 'get out the word' and bending most facts while doing so. I'm sick of it and I'm sick of them. Their faux missionary work among the alleged savages. I'm sick of their simplistic b.s. and how they lie and it's African-Americans left holding the bag. And I'm sick of Bill Moyers. Next week, Mr. White Guilt sits down with Jeremiah Wright. Yes, Bill, the world has been waiting for that interview. Not. Be a yeller and screamer or a shuck and jive artist and Bill Moyers will invite you onto his show. Be a competent person and forget it. In fact, the way he's set up his show this year, the conservative Shelby Steel came off better than any other African-American because he was intelligent and not putting on a ministrel act for the White folk. He doesn't do that with White people, does he? But his White viewers are left with the impression that we're either yellers or shuck & jive artists. It's insulting. I can make my point without raising my voice or without mentioning Jesus every other word. Look at who Bill Moyers has booked. I'd call it Prissy, from Gone With The Wind, but it's all men. I'm sick of it. I'm sick of the show telling White America that African-Americans are all a bunch of screaming, superstitious people. It's insulting.

Kat: I would agree with you and Betty and I talked about one of his screaming guests and how, no matter what the man said, who gave a damn? He was so loud that who wanted to hear him? You're in a TV studio. Bill Moyers might not respect you but there's no reason for you to disrespect yourself by putting on a ministrel show for Bill and his audience's benefit. I really think if we had an actual movement, a lot of shows would be the focus of protests and I'd put Bill Moyers program on the list as one to picket.

Rebecca: Trina?

Trina: Sorry, I'm watching Ava and C.I. take notes and thinking about how long this is going to take to type up. The point's been made before, by Ava, C.I. and Dona, but I think history will not be kind to a number of women who have taken part in these attacks on Hillary or stayed silent while they went on. It went beyond criticism, it was a non-stop bashing. It continues and still some women stay silent. All women are not feminists. Even those who claim to be. C.I. would you talk about the idiot who writes for The Seattle Times?
C.I.: Not this week but last, she felt the need to self-describe as a feminist and explain why she was supporting Barack. She explains, in her column, that she doesn't think there's a butter knife's bit of difference between Hillary and Barack. She also explains that she's tired of Hillary, Hillary's been around too long, she argues. She uses the term "goldenboy" to describe Barack. And she wants to claim to be a feminist. There is nothing feminist about that argument. That argument says a young man comes along and you toss aside a woman with experience and you do so happily because he's a "goldenboy." It says that experience doesn't mean anything. It says that you valued "newness" more. There's nothing feminist about it.

Trina: Thank you. I think women willl like that will be exposed for the non-feminists they were when it mattered. I want to plug Paul Krugman really quick because it was his going over the differences between Hillary and Barck's healthcare plans that led me to vote for Hillary on Super Tuesday. While I thank him, I think it's very disturbing that a number of female voices didn't write that column. I think it's very disturbing and I'm all for revoking membership in the club. I also think it's hilarious that C.I. worked to ensure an event by a Hillary hater was ignored by the press. I know no one else will mention that but I thought that was wonderful. You can't say you're pro-woman, let alone a feminist, stage your crappy event on the backs of African-American's misfortune, hide in your political closet and get away with it. And C.I. worked overtime calling in favors to make sure your 'big event' was a non-event. That's exactly what you deserved for your attacks on Hillary while claiming you were pro-woman. Don't expect anyone to take your "I want to help the women of the world!" lies seriously. You're nothing but a semi-closeted Communist. You play like you're not a Communist to the rest of the world and hope and pray no one reads the pieces you've written for Communist 'art' magazines. Those things do have a low circiulation, granted, but I thought it was wonderful how C.I. did a little press package assembling all your crappy writing that most people are unware of.

Elaine: C.I.'s not going to comment on that but I will say I agree with Trina 100%. And that little self-styled leader better grasp how many women no longer support her. As for women stabbing Hillary in the back, and that's what a lot of this is, Ava and C.I., in one of their TV commentaries, mention the disgusting George McGovern and note the scars of Miami. Those are scars you don't know about because you have worthless gender traitors like Amy Goodman who bring McGovern on and fawn all over him. McGovern lost and he lost big time. And Amy Goodman who published in Larry F**nt's skin magazine H**tler never tells you the reality about his campaign. When the battles in Miami went down and, over and over, women were losing -- not just on abortion by the way -- it destroyed his campaign. McGovern and his people were shameful. Today he's as disgusting as he always was and that's only a surprise if you bought into the Amy Goodman Truth which, hate to break it to you, is never the truth. It's never reality. But I don't remember Robin Morgan mentioning Miami in her wonderful essay "Goodbye To All That (#2)." She may have and I may be remembering wrong. But Robin Morgan certainly knows what happened in Miami and, briefly, what happened was a significant number of women joined men in selling women out. Women were thrown under the bus for McGovern. So those little namby pamby women today who want to criticize Robin Morgan, get your facts first, find out about Miami. We saw it happen then, what's going on now, we saw little girls posing as women betray us. It wasn't pretty and payback was hell. Again, that's not part of the 'official' McGovern story as told by Panhandle Media today.

Rebecca: We're going to close and I'll just note, Amy Goodman isn't the one to ever go to for the truth. She gets her facts wrong accidentally -- such as this week when she made a real howler -- and she gets it wrong intentionally because she's not working in journalism, she's serving a higher 'calling.' As for Elaine's points about Miami, exactly right. And battle lines are being drawn. Gender traitors -- especially those who are serial gender traitors -- better grasp that regardless of what happens in the Democratic primary, life as they know it is over. There is no 'let's forget about it' as too many sellouts had to learn following Miami.
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