11:40: President Obama delivers remarks on gun control at the White House – he will stand with mothers who want Congress to take action on common-sense measures to protect children from gun violence. Law enforcement officials and victims of gun violence will also attend.
2:10: Meets with the leaders of Sierra Leone, Senegal, Malawi and Cape Verde
President Obama checks Jane Hamsher’s accounts:
Jane Hamsher owes me $51,000 for my work on her Black Reeducation Bus Tour.
Gavin Polone: One of the many things that bug me about the industry in which I work is the large population of phonies who claim to be liberal, caring, green and unaffected by their wealth and fame but in reality are just as self-centered and addicted to their huge, over-air-conditioned living spaces and private planes as those at whom they point their fingers. And none is more phony and finger-pointing than Michael Moore.
Moore seems to be everywhere of late, talking about the “occupy” movement and fashioning himself its spokesmodel …. this protest would be better served if those speaking on its behalf were of cleaner hands and less hypocritical than Moore, who has suckled mightily at the teat of “those who do well.”
In 2005, the Weinstein Co. set up financing of about $500 million to fund production and distribution. The investment vehicle was created and syndicated by a little firm called Goldman Sachs. One of the films that was produced by TWC using funds from that investment was Moore’s documentary Sicko….
By 2010, TWC had burned through the capital raised in the Goldman Sachs deal. Investors were forced to restructure their arrangement, meaning some suffered a devaluation of their investment … One of those who did quite well using the TWC funds was Moore.
…. If Moore really wants to be seen as someone outside the circle of those he is protesting, it would be great if he would disclose how much he has made off his TWC-backed movies and why he was willing to associate himself with financing set up by Goldman Sachs. Further, journalists should start showing more backbone in testing the veracity of statements made by those who use the media to disseminate a holier-than-though message…..
ABC (2009): Michael Moore used some non-union crewmembers when union workers were available in the production of his latest film “Capitalism: A Love Story,” a documentary that argues the capitalist system allows for greedy corporations to exploit working-class people.
…. In a statement issued to ABCNews.com, Moore’s agent Ari Emanuel😯 said the filmmaker wished the union included more documentary crew people – but he did not deny that IATSE members were snubbed in favor of non-union employees.
…. As a result of Moore’s decision not to use IATSE workers, at least one other national union, the American Federation of Teachers has refused free tickets offered to them from Moore.
…. An internal AFT memo, obtained by ABCNews.com, added that the non-union workers hired for the film did not receive health insurance.
Grover Norquist’s best buddy Jane Hamsher is asking people to donate money to buy winter gear for the OWS protestors –
She’s promising that 100% of the money will go to the protestors.
But she’s using the very same OWS donation appeal to look for funds for herself:
Oh, let’s not forget OWS’s other self-appointed spokesman – you know, the guy who’s associated with Charles Koch’s Cato Institute:
The OWS movement is magnificent, it just can’t allow itself be hijacked by these self-promoting frauds.
Statement from the President on Senate Republicans Blocking the Infrastructure Bill:
For the third time in recent weeks, every single Republican in the United States Senate has chosen to obstruct a jobs bill that independent economists said would boost our economy and put Americans back to work. At a time when more than a million construction workers are looking for a job, they voted “no” to putting them back to work doing the work America needs done – rebuilding our roads, bridges, airports and transit systems. That makes no sense.
It makes no sense when you consider that this bill was made up of the same kinds of common-sense proposals that many of these Senators have fought for in the past. It was fully paid for. And even though it was supported by more than 70 percent of the American people – Republicans, Democrats, and independents – 100 percent of Senate Republicans said no. It’s more clear than ever that Republicans in Washington are out of touch with Americans from all ends of the political spectrum.
The American people deserve to know why their Republican representatives in Washington refuse to put some of the workers hit hardest by the economic downturn back on the job rebuilding America. They deserve an explanation as to why Republicans refuse to step up to the plate and do what’s necessary to create jobs and grow the economy right now. It’s time for Republicans in Congress to put country ahead of party and listen to the people they were elected to serve. It’s time for them to do their job and focus on Americans’ jobs. And until they do, I will continue to do everything in my power to move this country forward.
President Barack Obama participates in the G20 Family Photo, White House Photo, Pete Souza, 11/3/11
Beyond funny – from ChristiMtl:
Quick note here
I want to thank you guys for the lovely birthday wishes for my mom….she loved it!
I was on the phone with her and she read each ones. I translated for her the words she didn’t understand but for the most part, she could read it herself, her english is even better than I thought.
She LOVED the picture of President Obama with the birthday cake….
It was funny because in between the birthday wishes, there was a conversation with Tally, Chips and a few other TOD’ers.
So my mom said…”Oh I see a picture of a soccer player without his shirt on”
”And now it’s a picture of a shower, what does it mean?”
I could read sentences like ”My DNA wants to breed with Gerry Butler”
lol I didn’t know how to tell her that some TOD’ers needed a cold shower this morning.
I was cracking up.
So it was fun and lovely……
You guys are the best.
Emilia (Osborneink): Chris Matthews has written a book. So has Michael Moore. So have Bill Maher, Glenn Greenwald, Katrina vanden Heuvel and Joan Walsh.
Yes, folks, the pimping season has arrived, just in time for the Christmas sales.
This is why you see Michael Moore appropriating Occupy Wall Street, even though pimping his latest Forrest Ga-hu-hu-hump fantasy is pure capitalism. That’s why Joan Walsh appears twice daily on MSNBC opinion programs for no fee at all and out of the goodness of her heart. This is why Greenwald is here, there and everywhere, unfortunately. Maher plugs his book weekly on his show. Self-publicizing is too much for vanden Heuvel’s impeccable Fifth Avenue breeding. She sticks to Twitter.
In case you you don’t listen to podcasts, the video above has an extract from the show (recorded after OFA New Mexico State Director Ray Sandoval sent an email to supporters attacking Firebaggers and Paul Krugman).
It’s the best analysis of the Firebaggers I’ve heard. Be good to yourself, subscribe to The Bob and Chez Show on iTunes.😉
Norbrook’s Blog: …. other people have examined Accountability Now, which Jane and Glenn Greenwald launched with great fanfare a few years ago. Ostensibly it was to recruit progressive candidates, but it seemed to end up putting money into Jane and Glenn’s pockets:
Accountability Now collected $113,695 in donations during 2009, as it reported to the FEC, and spent $169,992 that year on nine consultants … including Hamsher ($24,000) and PAC cofounder Glenn Greenwald ($24,000)….
But it’s not Jane’s only PAC. Although most of the scrutiny has been on Accountability Now, when you look at FDL Action PAC’s FEC summary, you see something very interesting:
Fire Dog Lake: $90,063 …. Commonsense Media: $9,920
Hmm… it looks like there’s about $100K of “synergy” going on ….
…. recently Jane had a little blow-up, right after OFA announced what the President had raised (“a staggering $47 million in the past three months”)….
FDL Action’s fundraising wasn’t quite as good:
No wonder she’s pissed! Apparently all the previous donors have been thoroughly shorn, and new sheep aren’t lining up….
Norbrook’s post is brilliantly timely in light of Hamsher and Dan Choi’s arrests today outside the White House (along with another 60 or so people who actually do care about the environment – but you won’t hear much about them). They were staging a laudable (in my humble opinion) demonstration urging President Obama to block a proposed pipeline that would bring oil from Canada’s oil sands projects to Gulf Coast refineries (the Keystone XL pipeline).
Choi tweeted this yesterday:
Okay, so now that he can’t attack the President any more on gay rights issues – without looking even sillier than usual – he’s discovered (true, somewhat belatedly) that he really, really cares about the planet. And if caring about it so much sees him end up in jail, thereby getting him some attention again (when, really, most had forgotten he existed), then that’s a cross he’d, um, have to bear. Mission accomplished, well done Dan.
Well, you have to admire her purity on this one. She is so passionate and utterly sincere about the blocking of the Keystone XL pipeline she would never, ever have anything to do with anyone who supported it, right?
…..Hillary Clinton’s State Department is holding up the Canadian-American Keystone XL pipeline … unnecessarily inhibiting billions in economic activity and hundreds of thousands of jobs from being created, the State Department is preventing a much-needed regional stimulus. Click here to tell the State Department to get out of the way of America’s job creators and issue the Keystone XL pipeline building permit!
Americans for Tax Reform
Ah yes, Hamsher’s old buddy, the ‘tax pledge’ guy who makes Rick Perry seems like Mao Tse Tung, the one she collaborated with in opposition to President Obama (and his then Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel).
What? She can partner the lovely Grover on one issue, it doesn’t mean she agrees with him on everything?
Of course! Just like she can team up with President Obama when … oh, never mind.
Any way, those of you who might suggest that this….
…. might have had something to do with Hamsher’s heartfelt concerns about the Keystone XL pipeline – and you can be sure she lies awake at night worrying about it … even though she has a hard-hitting interview with Cenk Uygur the next day (“Jane, you’re, like, soooooooo great!” “I know Cenk – but you are too!”) …. shame on you.
Yes, she has been jailed, and she may well claim she was waterboarded while she was in there, and that will raise her sinking profile, and may even attract a few more dollars to her struggling PAC, but ….. shame on you.
Ooooops, $$$$$ are creating a strain between the Firebaggers.
John Aravosis has started selling these t-shirts on his “I HATE OBAMA SO MUCH I CAN’T EVEN FIND THE WORDS ” blog:
….and that’s made Hamsher’s peeps very, very angry:
Oh noes, the Firebaggers are eating each other alive …. after all, there are only so many $$$$ to go around😉
A second PS:
Credit must go to Aravosis, having picked only white male models for the t-shirts he’s being trying to sell so far…
….. he chose a ‘non-white’ man for his ‘Proud Firebagger’ offering. Jeez, if he added a woman to the line-up we might even accuse him of being inclusive.
Thank you Tien Le for the link to Norbrook’s post😉
Extreme Liberal: This is a must see, vintage smackdown of the “firebaggers.” Lawrence O’Donnell and Ezra Klein educate the foaming at the mouth “progressives” Jane Hamsher, Adam Green and some other firebagger wanna-be named Mike Roger Hodge. Watch and enjoy!
Thom Anderson (SCNow.com): “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”
That is the oath that members of the United States Congress, both houses, take as they begin their duties. Sounds good, but a majority in this Congress put an asterisk on it. Maybe they had their fingers crossed as they recited the oath.
The asterisk concerns a pledge, developed in the ‘80s by a 20-something fellow named Grover Norquist, who grew up rich and privileged, received two degrees from the dreaded Harvard, and then went directly into partisan, highly ideological company in the Reagan White House where he got the “inspiration” for the oath. An Internet search indicates he has never worked in the “real America” that right-wingers so revere, only in strong ideological company.
… When they sign this pledge, politicians promise that under no circumstance, not war, not danger of the government defaulting on legally and properly owed debt, not danger that the infrastructure will crumble us into Third World status, will they tolerate an increase in government revenue….
In other words, when these politicians swore before God and their country that they take their obligations “freely” and “without any mental reservation,” they were not truthful. How can they claim to face their obligations in Congress freely when they have made a prior pledge they consider unbreakable not to do certain things? They can’t.
…. This pledge of which most voters are unaware has been taken by some Congressmen since the 1980s. It was a major reason that a “conservative” president and Congress not only failed to pay for a war that has gone sour but cut taxes as they entered it, turning an inherited surplus into a huge deficit.
They also added an expensive Medicare drug benefit without funding, further increasing the deficit. This higher cost they created, they now use as an excuse to scrap Medicare.
Also, you wouldn’t pick a music-hater to conduct an orchestra. Why pick a government-hater to run your country? When electing people who are against government, think of Afghanistan, Somalia and Yemen. They don’t have real governments.
Let’s never forget, Norquist is the traitor Firedogfake’s Hamsher teamed up with when they campaigned together for the resignation of Rahm Emanuel:
Kevin Drum (Mother Jones, December 2009): Apparently Jane Hamsher has decided that a healthcare bill that provides a trillion dollars worth of benefit to low and middle income workers is so odious that mere opposition isn’t enough. Nor is opposition that increasingly employs the worst kind of right-wing talking points. No, it’s so odious that it deserves a scorched earth campaign against the Obama White House in partnership with Grover Norquist. Hard to know what to say about this. What’s next? A joint Twitter campaign with Sarah Palin? A letter writing campaign cosponsored by Richard Viguerie? A joint lawsuit with Orly Taitz? Jeebus.
Nicholas D. Kristof (NYT): If China or Iran threatened our national credit rating and tried to drive up our interest rates, or if they sought to damage our education system, we would erupt in outrage.
Well, wake up to the national security threat. Only it’s not coming from abroad, but from our own domestic extremists.
We tend to think of national security narrowly as the risk of a military or terrorist attack. But national security is about protecting our people and our national strength — and the blunt truth is that the biggest threat to America’s national security this summer doesn’t come from China, Iran or any other foreign power. It comes from budget machinations, and budget maniacs, at home.
…. on this issue, many House Republicans aren’t serious, they’re just obsessive in a destructive way. The upshot is that in their effort to protect the American economy from debt, some of them are willing to drag it over the cliff of default.
…. Republican zeal to lower debts could result in increased interest expenses and higher debts. Their mania to save taxpayers could cost taxpayers. That suggests not governance so much as fanaticism.
More broadly, a default would leave America a global laughingstock. Our “soft power,” our promotion of democracy around the world, and our influence would all take a hit. The spectacle of paralysis in the world’s largest economy is already bewildering to many countries. If there is awe for our military prowess and delight in our movies and music, there is scorn for our political/economic management.
While one danger to national security comes from the risk of default, another comes from overzealous budget cuts — especially in education, at the local, state and national levels. When we cut to the education bone, we’re not preserving our future but undermining it.
… “The attack on literacy programs reflects a broader assault on education programs,” said Rosa DeLauro, a Democratic member of Congress from Connecticut. She notes that Republicans want to cut everything from early childhood programs to Pell grants for college students. Republican proposals have singled out some 43 education programs for elimination, but it’s not seen as equally essential to end tax loopholes on hedge fund managers.
So let’s remember not only the national security risks posed by Iran and Al Qaeda. Let’s also focus on the risks, however unintentional, from domestic zealots.
‘Obama’ sneaks up on unsuspecting babies and tries to indoctrinate them with his brand of Hitlerism
After entering seriously ugly Firedogfake/Glenn GreenBeck cyberspace territory today to read up on a bunch of stuff, including Firedogfake’s threats to Eclectablog (see here), what struck me most was the seething hatred of Barack Obama the man, never mind Barack Obama the President.
I sometimes enter Teabagger territory just to entertain myself with their spectacular stupidity, but honestly, even there you’d struggle to find the same levels of hatred that you get from Firedogfake, Glenn GreenBeck and the like.
We are talking foaming-at-the-mouth hatred here.
Here’s an example.
On May 18 of this year this was posted at Jane Hamsher’s Firedogfake:
It’s now July 18th and that post – about the need for “Afro-Americans” to enter an “education program” – is still on FDL.
Hamsher owns FDL, so she owns this post – so spare us all the excuse that it was only written by one of FDL’s diarists. If Hamsher found an entry on the site that was critical of her, she’d have it deleted in a blink of an eye.
But a post about the need for “Afro-Americans” to enter an “education program” is, evidently, perfectly fine.
Truly, this is as ugly as it can get.
Let’s cut the crap and call it for what it is: Hamsher and her FDL sheeple are race-baiting scum.
If they weren’t, an FDL post calling for “Afro-Americans” to be entered in an “education program” would have been deleted.
But it’s still there.
The more anonymous threats I get from Hamsherbots, the more I’ll post about her – and that’s a promise😉
Unlike Hamsher, I don’t – and never, ever will – ask for or accept donations.
If anyone has a few dollars to spare, I will ask them to contribute to Obama/Biden 2012.
Some of us aren’t in it for the money or attention – truly, we’re just not that desperate.
Hiya everyone, sorry I wasn’t able to be around much yesterday, hopefully I’ll catch up later today. Just to say, thanks so much for the great response to the ‘Here we go again‘ post below – but honestly, I can’t take any credit at all for its content, that’s down to the excellent work being done by bloggers like:
Extreme Liberal: Adam Green’s Dishonest Attack And Appeal For Cash (here)
Progressive Electorate: Jane Hamsher’s Accountability Now PAC Raises $$ Questions (here)
Rcade (Daily Kos): How Jane Hamsher Spends Her PAC Money (here)
Drumsnwhistles: Federal Election Commission to Jane Hamsher: Tell us more, please (here)
Workbench: How Jane Hamsher Spends Her PAC Money (see here)
Osbornelink: Nixon had a word for people like Jane Hamsher (here)
Mother Jones: Strange Bedfellows Indeed (Hamsher and Grover Norquist) (here)
HistoryByDay (Young Turks): Jane Hamsher – Bought And Sold? (here)
Rooted Cosmopolitan: Media Types: Don’t Call Someone Who Works for Republicans a Disaffected Progressive (here)
W.E.E. See You: Lip Synching Liberals – WEE Told You So (here)
Osbornelink: Jane The Hamsher Strikes Again (here)
Moderate Left: Can’t Shake the Devil’s Hand and Say You’re Only Kidding (here)
Drumsnwhistles: Jane Hamsher’s crusade to hand government back to conservatives (here)
I’m sure I’ve left out lots more great links – if you think of any please add them in the comments and I’ll update the post. And if you can, read through those links, they reveal so much.
Apparently Hamsher saw it because according to this post at Angry Black Lady, he got the following email from one of her employees:
The chances of you becoming a paid front pager somewhere have dropped significantly … Jane will never forget and she will bad mouth you to the major blog owners if your name comes up. She is a friend of Marcos [sic] and Josh Marshall and the guys who run the American Prospect and pretty much anyone on the liberal side of the blogs and you’ve made a major career fuck up.
…. It’s past time for folks to wake up and smell the rancid brew this woman is creating …. What this email does expose is her motives and strategy. I think it’s high time that word got out and people started to ask proprietors at blogs like Daily Kos, Think Progress and the American Prospect to stand up and show their independence by denouncing Hamsher and any associations they might have had with her.
…. If the cost of being a paid liberal blogger is kowtowing to someone who will try to destroy your career if you say something negative about her, I won’t pay that price. I probably make more money in my day job than Jane does keeping the internet safe from pragprog Obama supporters and I can blog circles around her doing it as a hobby.
Read the full post here – and read Eclectablog on his experience here.
And see this post from Smartypants from June about Matt Osborne – he was “offered a paid writing gig in “the movement” (his term), but was told that if he took it, he would have to dial back the criticism of Hamsher”. (See Osborne’s Tweets from Netroots Nations here – thanks Angry Black Lady)
A writer at ExiledOnline had a similar experience to Eclectablog – see here
“….. Within minutes after this article was posted, Michael Whitney of Firedoglake sent Mike Elk, author of this article, the classic Hollywood death-knell: “You’ll never work in this town again.” Whitney, who once ran a labor blog for Firedoglake until it was taken down because it was so poorly put together and drew such anemic traffic, now serves as Vice President of the Membership Board for Firedoglake. Apparently one of his duties is acting as Hamsher’s hall monitor, policing the internet for anyone not sufficiently worshipful of his employer.”
BWD posted a Deepak Chopra article today at The Only Adult In The Room (see below) which made me think of this line from the Moderate Left link above. It was a reference to Hamsher teaming up with Grover Norquist in their anti-Rahm Emanuel campaign and her working against the President’s healthcare reform efforts (remember, she teamed up with the Tea Party on that issue: see here):
“She is now working with people who do not wish to improve the Obama Administration, but instead wish to destroy it.”
And that’s been the way since day one, even before he had a chance to ‘betray!’ them. She and her Firedogfake sheeple will team up with literally anyone to try to defeat the President in 2012 – even Norquist and the Tea Party!!- regardless of the consequences for America. And still they call themselves progressives.
Any way, here are some extracts from that Chopra article:
Deepak Chopra: One of the virtues of being on the liberal side of politics is that total obedience isn’t required …. In a political climate where it feels as if the inmates are running the asylum – as in the current Republican threat to default on America’s debt – the prevailing sanity of President Obama is something that others and I have taken for granted.
We cannot afford that luxury any more, I’m afraid.
For many reasons, this is the moment when loyalty is going to count the most. That’s a hard sentence to write. Liberal politics is based on a non-regimented, all-inclusive approach to democracy. Freedom of thought is paramount. But certain harsh realities must be faced. For thirty years and more, the progressive tradition has been severely undermined, dating back to Nixon’s “Southern strategy” (coddle the racists) and Ronald Reagan’s smiling reactionary agenda (AIDS victims deserve what they get), through the first President Bush’s Willie Horton strategy (another boost for racism) and the second President Bush’s deceptive “compassionate conservatism.”
It was such a relief to return to humane, non-ideological governance when President Obama won in 2008 that we underestimated the debasing effect that two generations of right-wing indoctrination has had …
…. all of us who have taken advantage of our liberal heritage to question and criticize President Obama need to step back and consider the radical nature of the opposition, from the Supreme Court down to the local precinct … …. Since 9/11, playing upon fear has been wildly successful for the right wing – it re-elected a catastrophic president…
If ever there was a time to stand behind the captain, this is it. Not because pluralism and free expression are wrong. They aren’t and never will be. But like Churchill calling upon a coalition cabinet in the depth of the war years, it’s paramount that we see the greater danger for what it is. Attention was drawn to the cover of a recent issue of the Economist, which showed a tall President Obama towering over a squabbling handful of pygmy Republican rivals for the presidency. The headline read, “He Could Still Lose.” We need to remember that if that were to happen, it wouldn’t be because President Obama made too many mistakes or failed to pass a sufficiently liberal agenda. The reason would be that all of us forgot the 30-year reign of reactionary administrations (minus the Clinton years) and the power of debased politics to keep coming back, again and again.
That’s right, ‘progressive’ OUTRAGE! peddlers Miss BP (aka the Hamsher creature, Tea Party and Grover Norquist buddy) and Republican/Libertarian Gary Johnson’s Number One fan (aka Greenwald) paid themselves $24,000 each for “strategic consulting” from Accountability Now donations – precisely $24,000 more than they donated in 2008 and 2010 to candidates challenging “corporate-controlled incumbents”, as they promised Accountability Now would do.
And how was most of their money raised? By sending out hysterical emails to their sheeple distorting the words of President Obama, firing up the hate …. and then pleading for donations to fight this dastardly traitor.
Well, well, well …. here we go again:
The Reid Report: Adam Green runs the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, an entity designed to automatically disgorge mass solicitation emails attacking President Obama every time the president speaks, thereby raising copious amounts of cash to … um … what do they do, exactly? Oh, right… to buy a few ads attacking President Obama and the occasional Republican.
Green and his fellow travelers on the anti-Obama left have been spoiling for a fight with the White House on entitlements, which these folks are apparently convinced Barack Obama is about to feed into a giant shredding machine …. but Green’s latest fundraising email, which landed in my in-box just after 7 p.m. on Monday (and was headlined BREAKING, even though the news it refers to happened hours earlier, at 11 a.m.) opens on an exquisitely dishonest note:
BREAKING: Obama outrage.
BREAKING: Today, in a press conference, President Obama came right out and said it: He’s pushing for benefit cuts in important programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
You and 175,000 others boldly pledged that if Obama actually cuts Medicare/Medicaid benefits, you’ll take your money and volunteering elsewhere in 2012.
Green then urges recipients to sign a pledge not to give money to the Obama campaign if he cuts Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security ….. presumably, they should give money to the Progressive Change Campaign Committee instead…
Ah yes, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee:
Wow, $725.2k of funds raised in 2010 went on “administrative costs”, $503,788 of that on “salaries and benefits” ….. oh, look:
Workbench (2010): …. PACs have different policies regarding whether they compensate the people who run the committees. Some don’t accept one cent of donor money and devote it all to their cause, while others pay themselves salaries, travel expenses and office rent. I interviewed Darcy Burner, a former Democratic Congressional candidate from Washington state who runs the not-for-profit Progressive Congress Action Fund, to learn whether it’s common for left-wing PACs to pay themselves. “The bigger PACs require full-time staff to operate — to raise money, to vet candidates [and] to file reports,” she said. “I think the key question would be more one of whether people giving the money understand what it will be used for. … There’s a trust relationship with donors that requires some truth and transparency about how money is going to be used.”
Read Shoq’s experience with Miss BP here – and their Twitter exchange here
This gem of a 2010 story by David Weigel (now Slate) in the Washington Independent can never be re-posted enough:
Weigel was reporting on an anti-healthcare reform Tea Party rally where he spoke to one of the organizers and speakers, Kathryn Serkes. She told him:
“I’m in contact with folks on the progressive side. They’re saying right now that Pelosi’s almost there with the votes. What they’re saying is that there’s some serious arm-twisting – their words were union thuggery. One progressive source told me that there was serious union thuggery this weekend, targeting Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.).”
The source, she confirmed, was Jane Hamsher of Firedoglake.
Weigel emailed Hamsher to ask her if she was, in fact, working with the Tea Party on the issue and if she had used the term “union thuggery” in her conversations with Serkes.
Hamsher didn’t reply, instead posting this at Firedoglake in response to his report (‘Tea Party Activist Working With Firedoglake’s Hamsher on HCR Whip Count’ – here)
“Dave Weigel isn’t a journalist, he’s a smear-monger that makes things up and projects his own fantasies onto his stories ….I know Katherine, we were on MSNBC together and we’ve spoken about working on the pot legalization measure in California in the future …. she tells me that when Weigel approached her and asked her who her “source” was, she didn’t say. He said “It’s Jane Hamsher, isn’t it…I’ve been around.” According to Katherine, she didn’t respond.
….I’m not “working” with the tea partiers on health care. But Weigel doesn’t care about the truth …. He’s just a fantasist printing propaganda, and the Washington Independent has no higher standards than to print it.”
Weigel had a recording of his conversation with the Tea Party woman:
SERKES: They’re saying that there’s some serious arm-twisting, and their words were union thuggery.
WEIGEL: Who’s the they?
SERKES: The progressive side. A progressive source told me that there was serious union thuggery going on this weekend.
WEIGEL: Is this the Firedoglake folks?
SERKES: It’s Jane. You’re figured it out.
WEIGEL: I’m not new at this.
SERKES: She said they were after Altmire this weekend. Yeah, because Jane and I last talked Saturday.
Hamsher’s response to being outed?
“Weigel has now posted the audio tape of his conversation with Katherine Serkes at the Tea Party event, in which he does not inform her that he was taping her. The recording confirms that she did use my name, however. I’ve asked Weigel twice now if at any point prior to this segment he informed her that she was being recorded, and he has not responded.
…. attending a Tea Party event and taping attendees without their knowledge, then posting that tape to discredit them in support of passing the health care bill, sounds more like the actions of a Democratic political operative …. he aspires to be a member of a cliquish, insider set with the moral flexibility to align themselves with anyone in power.”
Ah yes, the big issue here was the recording, not the fact that it had been revealed that Hamsher was working with the Tea Party towards their common goal: the defeat of President Obama’s healthcare bill. Or that Serkes quoted Hamsher using Tea Party speak: “Union thuggery.” Note how she failed to address being exposed, instead resorting to personal abuse.
After exposing Hamsher, Weigel asked for “an apology and a retraction” – he’s still waiting.
Fox and Friend:
Yep, she joined in on Fox News’ ‘Kill The Bill’ campaign, appearing on the network soon after calling for a boycott of it.
This story, from May of this year, is an eye-opener too:
Mike Elk (ExiledOnline, May 2011): Yesterday I confronted Jane Hamsher, founder of Firedoglake, over her refusal to honor a labor boycott against the Huffington Post that two major writers unions have called for.
… Hamsher wasn’t satisfied merely crossing the picket line: She went on the offensive against boycott organizers … In an email exchange with several members of the labor movement, Hamsher jeered at the writers’ union organizers, mocking their organizing efforts….
In response to Hamsher’s outrageous anti-labor attacks, I wrote to one of these listserv groups on which both Hamsher and I were members: “Jane Hamsher the last person I would ever want to have as my shop steward” … this was not the first time Hamsher has taken a position hostile to workers’ rights and labor ….
…Hamsher also attacked Sal Roselli (president of the National Union of Healthcare Workers) implying that he was an Italian thug, an old tactic used by anti-labor PR people to smear labor activists as mobsters ….
….When I raised this ugly episode yesterday in the context of Hamsher’s attacks on the HuffPo boycott, Hamsher responded to me, “You’re just halucinating [sic] now, Mike. I never ‘tried to get people fired from their jobs,’ nor did I ever use ‘race baiting language to paint Sal Roselli as a thug.’….You’re either really mentally ill, or incredibly malicious.”
Five years ago she posted this photoshopped picture of Joe Lieberman as a ‘black’ man on Huffington Post, in an attempt to describe his efforts to “woo African American voters”. The photo was promptly removed, and she offered a ‘sorry if you were offended’ apology.
Osborneink.com (December 2010): Jane the Hamsher is one of the cool kids… yet she wouldn’t recognize progress if it smacked her in the face, and so far has achieved nothing resembling progress on any front. Indeed, I have been waiting for someone to tell me what this woman’s “progressive” credentials are.
She is first and foremost a self-aggrandizing publicity whore whose Accountability Now PAC has so far given $0 to progressive candidates in the first two years of its existence while spending $285,272. If she ran a non-profit this way, it would get shut down. As things stand, the PAC (which also counts Kos and Glenn Greenwald as operators) has only made noise.
…. Hamsher’s kill-the-bill madness included an appearance on FOX News just months after her own call to boycott the network. She later returned to that channel spouting nonsense about cap-and-trade. Her recent appearances on Lawrence O’Donnell leave me convinced progress is not her purpose.
Jane has a troubling problem with transparency and truthfulness…..
rcade (DK, March 2010): Firedoglake publisher Jane Hamsher has become one of the most polarizing figures in the liberal blogosphere, moving people sharply to the pro or con column with her outspoken opposition to the health care reform bill, appearances on Fox News bashing the Obama administration and the letter she sent with conservative activist Grover Norquist demanding the resignation of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
Hamsher wields a lot of influence by operating two Democratic political action committees, FDL Action PAC and Accountability Now PAC. By the end of 2009 these PACs had accumulated $454,000 from thousands of individual donors….
The Federal Election Commission reports show that Hamsher’s PACs are a significant source of income for Firedoglake, but my experience trying to question her about them suggests that she’s not big on transparency.
… Accountability Now collected $113,695 in donations during 2009, as it reported to the FEC, and spent $169,992 that year on nine consultants … including Hamsher ($24,000) and PAC cofounder Glenn Greenwald ($24,000)….
Osborneink: …. Jane Hamsher is quite obviously accepting money from BP. Why is that important? Because according to Hamsher, anyone who takes money from the oil company is guilty of selling out:
“Carbon cap and trade was a scheme cooked up by BP and Enron lobbyists in the mid nineties. BP has subsequently dropped millions of dollars into the coffers of green groups to pave the way for it. Obama’s cry to pass Kerry-Lieberman as punishment for BP is not only highly ironic, it’s also illustrative of just how broken our national discourse around environmental issues has become.
Until progressive groups successfully address the challenge of funding themselves independent of the elite individuals and institutions that act as enforcers of a corporate agenda, they will not be able to successfully advocate for progressive causes. Any success they might have will mean that their funding dries up, and they will cease to exist.”