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August 28, 2008

Obama Campaign, DNC Crush Dissent

Another mystery solved. At last we know what a community organizer does:

Stanley Kurtz's appearance on the Milt Rosenberg radio program in Chicago last night provided an unsettling look into the authoritarian tactics being employed by the Obama campaign to stifle and intimidate its critics.

I happened to be in the WGN studios for the entire affair because my friend, Zack Christenson, produces the show in question. He was aware of my previous reporting on the Obama-Ayers connection and kindly invited me to sit in on the two-hour interview. (For full disclosure, I work for two other radio stations in Chicago, WIND, and WYLL).

As I arrived at the downtown Chicago studios a few hours before show time, the phones began ringing off the hook with irate callers demanding Kurtz be axed from the program. It didn't take long to discover that the Obama campaign—which had declined invitations to join the show for its duration to offer rebuttals to Kurtz's points—had sent an "Obama Action Wire" e-mail to its supporters, encouraging them to deluge the station with complaints.

Why? Because, naturally, Kurtz is a "right-wing hatchet man," a "smear merchant" and a "slimy character assassin" who is perpetrating one of the "most cynical and offensive smears ever launched against Barack."

Evidently, much of Obama nation is comprised of obedient and persistent sheep. They jammed all five studio lines for nearly the entire show while firing off dozens of angry emails. Many vowed to kick their grievances up the food chain to station management. After 90 minutes of alleged smear peddling, Milt Rosenberg (a well-respected host whose long-form interview show has aired in Chicago for decades) opened the phone lines, and blind ignorance soon began to crackle across the AM airwaves. The overwhelming message was clear: The interview must be put to an end immediately, and the station management should prevent similar discussions from taking place.

Here's the text of the Obama campaign's email (via Memeorandum). Kind of like deja vu all over again, isn't it?

Here, the Swift Boat vets reply to the charges made against them by the DNC. Apparently the letter has been largely unsuccessful - only one station has so far refused to air the ad on advice of counsel.

I decided to look at the actual text of the Swift Boat Vets ad and contrast that with the charges made in the DNC letter to see if the DNC's charges of lying were grounded in fact:

John Edwards: "If you have any question about what John Kerry is made of, just spend 3 minutes with the men who served with him."

Al French: "I served with John Kerry."

Bob Elder: "I served with John Kerry."

What the DNC threat letter says "the advertisement contains statements from men who purport to have served on Senator Kerry's SWIFT Boat in Vietnam"...In fact, not a single one of these men who pretend to have served with Senator Kerry was actually a crewmate of Senator Kerry's and the man pretending to be his doctor was not. The entire advertisement, therefore, is one inflammatory, outrageous lie. ... Not a single one of these men served on either of Senator Kerry's SWIFT boats (PCF44 or PCF94).

Fact check: The DNC's allegation is false - Not a single one of the 12 men in the ad states that he served aboard the same boat, nor that he was a crewmember of Kerry's. French, Hildreth, and Elder don't even say they served with Kerry in Vietnam. Applying standard used in their own letter (one falsehood invalidates the whole), the DNC's allegations are therefore "one inflammatory, outrageous lie".

George Elliott: "John Kerry has not been honest about what happened in Vietnam."

Al French: "He is lying about his record."

Fact check: The Swift Boat vets are not the only ones to catch the Kerry campaign re-writing the official record. Senator Kerry has been loose with the facts on several occasions. Here and most importantly, here where THE BOSTON GLOBE catches the Kerry online bio taking credit for combat incidents that occurred before Kerry took command.

It's always interesting, what you find out when you start looking into these accusations of "lying". Unfortunately, heavy handed attempts to intimidate local TV and radio stations are nothing new for Democratic presidential candidates. Rather than address allegations on the merits, they prefer to suppress "inconvenient" speech entirely. As I documented carefully several years ago, the Kerry campaign's claims didn't bear close inspection.

But then that's just the point, isn't it? Because close inspection is precisely what they hope to avoid through threats and intimidation. The Swift Vets weren't the only targets of the Kerry campaign's threats - he went after The Club for Growth as well. Seems intimidation has been quite profitable for the DNC - after all, it worked against ABC.

Ruth Marcus asks:

Does it matter that ABC invented and distorted history in its "warning: this is not a documentary" docudrama, "The Path to 9/11"? After all, the first night of the faux drama was trounced by the brother-against-brother actual drama of "Sunday Night Football."

I have a better question for her.

Does it matter to the media that for the first time I can recall in my life, a major TV network was intimidated by the threats of Democrat Senators into censoring the content of a clearly-labeled fictionalized account of a historical event until it conformed to the "government approved" version of events? If this is the standard the Democrat Party wishes to see enforced on Hollywood then Fahrenheit 9/11, Michael Moore's blatantly inaccurate "docudrama", should be immediately pulled from the shelves of American retailers and its content revised until Bush administration officials are satisfied that it agrees with the historical record.

One can't help but wonder how Ms. Marcus would respond if six Republican Senators wrote a letter threatening Congressional action unless he edited the content of a movie to their satisfaction, or better yet, pulled it altogether.

But you see, that wouldn't happen. These people manufacture conspiracies to crush dissent when the Joint Chiefs merely write a polite letter to the editor yet ignore it when their own operatives use federal tax dollars to suppress viewpoints they find "unacceptable".

I guess their professed reverence for free speech and the toleration of dissent only applies so long as it's not their ox being gored.

Update: More "community organizing" by the DNC, from Darleen:

I work with cops. I have a great deal of respect for cops. But this was beyond the pale. This was cops acting as paid thugs for the DNC to keep embarrassing pictures from the press. What fool believes a public sidewalk is owned by a private hotel?

Those so-called Denver cops should be immediately suspended and the DNC should be held accountable.

A picture is worth a thousand words here. Video link at Darleen's place:

abc_eslocker_arrested.jpg

My son is a cop and I agree, 100%. As Glenn Reynolds notes, the "over the top" response by the Obama campaign to any criticism is as revealing as it is counterproductive:

The Ayers connection itself is less interesting to me than the campaign's over-the-top response. It seems to me that they could have put this behind them already, but instead their reaction seems to be fanning the flames.

This YouTuber looked at the McCain account vs. the Obama account and found 36% negative comments on the McCain account. The comments were allowed to stand.

On the Obama account, there were 0 negative comments. And this is the President who promises to listen to opposing voices?

If Obama and his supporters are already indulging in this kind of wine and cheese thuggery, what will he do when he has the power of the federal government at his behest?

Question for the ages: where are Sue Sarandon and Tim Robbins when you need them? If the progressyve community were really serious about bringing back 1968, they appear to have done a bang up job. Sadly, the only thing I feel blowin' in the wind is a very big chill.

Update II: Fausta has lots more on this.

Posted by Cassandra at August 28, 2008 02:38 PM

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Comments

It's almost as if the media are trying to help steal an election for the Democrats, but, they would never do anything like that would they ? ACORN and ANSWER are all fine ,upstanding community support organizations that would never participate in voter fraud would they ? Aren't these the same people whom frequently and loudly complain about having their rights violated ? Hmmm.

Posted by: Edward Lunny at August 28, 2008 03:20 PM

This story going to become very interesting, Edward.

I am not normally inclined to side with the press, but I can't see that this use of force was in any way justified. The guy was leaving, and frankly I'm not sure why he should have had to leave.

Posted by: Cassandra at August 28, 2008 03:32 PM

"Aren't these the same people whom frequently and loudly complain about having their rights violated ?"
If you mean by having their attorney's file complaints with the DOJ? Yeah.

Meanwhile, an independent reporter captured this scene last night after the crowd had dispersed from The Pepsi Center. In it can be seen internal conflict and dissent within the ranks of the Obama08 campaign staffers as they try to reach an agreement on how to further suppress unfavorable information.

Posted by: bt_what-me-worry_hun at August 28, 2008 03:53 PM

" This story going to become very interesting, Edward "...I agree, I don't think this toothpaste can be put back into the tube. I just wonder how long it will be before it makes the nightly news.

Posted by: Edward Lunny at August 28, 2008 05:31 PM

Here's the latest story I could find - ABC seeks dismissal of producer charges http://news.yahoo.com/s/denverpost/20080828/pl_denverpost/10327600_1

'Denver police spokesman Lt. Ron Saunier said the department's internal affairs bureau has opened a case to look into the incident.

"We're committed to investigating any and all allegations of unnecessary force or complaints," he said.

Saunier said "advisement with that particular reporter started at 9 o'clock that morning and continued all the way up to the incident" at 11:55 a.m. "My understanding is he had been at the entryway and was asked numerous times to step back."'

Hmmm, I think pushing a person into traffic and then accusing them of blocking traffic while claiming a public sidewalk is owned by a private hotel is excessive ... or am I just going elk crazy? BTW - I also have family members who are police officers and many friends and acquaintances and more often then not side with the police in disputed situations, but I can't see anything here justifying this.

Posted by: Frodo at August 28, 2008 09:13 PM

I would like to hear the police side, but on the face of it I agree with you.

If he's doing something wrong, arrest him. The pushing into the street and physical intimidation were a bit much. Protesters did far worse and were ignored by police - what gives?

I'd love to see the departmental guidance on this.

Posted by: Cass at August 28, 2008 09:22 PM

I have not read your entire post yet but I will say this - I know Bob Hildreth personally. I trust anything he says 110%.

If I'm remembering my conversations with him properly, he served WITH John Kerry. They were in the same canal. And, in listening to Bob talk, when his boat hit an explosive and he (Hildreth) and his crew were blown off their boat, John Kerry turned and fled, leaving Hildreth and his men to die in the water, rather than work to save his men.

Posted by: HomefrontSix at August 28, 2008 09:22 PM

Protesters did far worse and were ignored by police - what gives?

Somebody has to be the insurgency and somebody has to counter it.

Posted by: Ymarsakar at August 28, 2008 10:02 PM

While the YouTube video is well done, I think it highly likely that Obama's fans would say there were no negative comments because there simply weren't any...which is ludicrous, of course.

This from the Party of Tolerance, no less; what a joke that is...

Posted by: camojack at August 29, 2008 01:24 AM

From the Obama Campaign's e-mail:

Kurtz claimed on Fox News that William Ayers recruited Obama to the Annenberg Challenge -- a flat out lie. Ayers did not serve on the board of the Challenge...

From Wikipedia:

Ayers was tapped by Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley to help found the Chicago Annenberg Challenge...They [Ayers and Obama] served together on the Woods Fund [a CAC project] Board from 1999 until Obama left in 2002.

Yup, that's the Alternate-Reality-Based Party, all right...

Posted by: BillT at August 29, 2008 07:16 AM

"Ayers was tapped by Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley to help found the Chicago Annenberg Challenge...They [Ayers and Obama] served together on the Woods Fund [a CAC project] Board from 1999 until Obama left in 2002."
Damned time dilation calculations askew again!!!

Jumping between realities is not as easy as one might think.

Posted by: chewbaca at August 29, 2008 08:19 AM

Jumping between realities is not as easy as one might think.

It's simple, actually -- do what the Obamalites do.

Keep your eyes closed.

Posted by: BillT at August 29, 2008 08:24 AM

Of course, they arrest the reporter covering Dem corruption but threatening to kill Michelle Malkin is no big deal.

Posted by: SDN at August 29, 2008 12:30 PM

Of course. The reporter was *dangerous*, whereas the dillweeds -- uhhhh -- passersby threatening -- uhhhhh -- addressing Michelle Malkin were merely exercising their right to incite a rio -- uhhhhhhh -- to free speech. Yup.

Posted by: BillT at August 29, 2008 01:47 PM

Of course, they arrest the reporter covering Dem corruption but threatening to kill Michelle Malkin is no big deal.

If you look at how Iran and Mao's forces conducted counter anti-revolutionary operations, you would notice an interesting parallel.

People conducting violence and what not, aren't dangerous to the revolutionary forces. The counter anti-revolutionary forces are only concerned about operations not sanctioned by the Great Leader.

The ABC reporter was unsanctioned, persona non-grata, and thus a spy and saboteur. Such folks must be purged from the system and you know it.

Posted by: Ymarsakar at August 29, 2008 03:11 PM

>>> Jumping between realities is not as easy as one might think.

> It's simple, actually -- do what the Obamalites do.

Don't be daft, man! They have a simultaneous existence in many realities at once.

Lefties all have an extra dimension called "Truthiness", and they're kind of like the sphere in Flatland poking its head into our reality, and appearing as a circle. They look like us, but they really have multiple planes of existence all at the same time.

.

Posted by: Obloodyhell at September 1, 2008 02:23 PM

"Lefties all have an extra dimension called "Truthiness", and they're kind of like the sphere in Flatland poking its head into our reality, and appearing as a circle. They look like us, but they really have multiple planes of existence all at the same time."
No wonder the profit in contraband items is zilch. Creatures of such power see nothing is verboten to them. Nothing is right, nothing is wrong... it's all good.

Why I hear the it's all good multi-dimensional folks are jumping on a 17 year old with child. And I thought this condition was considered a rite of passage in their ranks. Particularly if one was in the entertainment industry.

It's all so confusing, I suppose I might as well open a bait shop.

Posted by: chewbaca at September 1, 2008 02:37 PM

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