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Archive for May 23rd, 2009

GOP Boasts Of Using Huffington Post To Drive Wedges Between Democrats And Activist Base

Posted by Phoenix Woman on May 23, 2009

The Politico’s Michael Calderone (h/t KingOneEye) reports:

Huffington Post reporter Ryan Grim, a former POLITICO staffer, said that after the House leadership released a video earlier this month questioning the White House on national security, a senior House Republican aide reached out to make sure he’d received it — that’s despite knowing how the site would probably play the story (and how commenters would react).

The piece that resulted — “House GOP Obama Ad Aims to Terrify” — likely appealed to liberal Huffington Post readers, while also drawing attention to the Republican clip, which is what the party wanted all along.

Such a relationship can be beneficial to both parties — while the GOP message usually won’t get a friendly reception among Huffington Post readers, there are times when it can drive wedge between the moderate Democrats in Washington and party’s activist base.

“In some cases — like oversight of TARP and transparency in Obama’s White House — their agenda is not inconsistent with Republicans,” said Alex Conant, the RNC’s national press secretary in 2008.

Conant wrote his first Huffington Post commentary last month, touching upon an area where the anti-war left and the Obama administration might differ: Afghanistan. There, Conant wrote that in some aspects, Obama is following the path laid by liberal bogeymen like George W. Bush and Donald Rumseld.

“The piece I wrote for them, I thought, was something that was appropriate for their audience,” said Conant. “It was about how Obama’s going to have problems with his base — which is Huffington Post readers — because of his Afghanistan policies.”

“To the extent that Republicans have an interest in communicating with Obama’s base,” Conant continued, “that’s going to be a good medium.”

In other words, this is concern trolling raised to a high art. Or blogger jujitsu.

Posted in blogs and blogging, Republicans, The smear industry, working the refs | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on GOP Boasts Of Using Huffington Post To Drive Wedges Between Democrats And Activist Base

Korea shock

Posted by Charles II on May 23, 2009

The former president of South Korea, Roh Moo-hyun has committed suicide in the wake of a (probably politically-motivated) corruption investigation. He is accused of profiting from millions of dollars paid to family members. He was one of a generation of left-reformers that sought to clean up South Korea’s notably corrupt and undemocratic (and conservative) system. While in office, he made major strides in reconciliation between North and South, strides which his conservative successor has reversed. Whether he was or was not guilty of financial corruption, he was one of the rare leaders in Korea with political courage and compassion. From his obituary:

But in 1981 his work brought him in contact with a case of human rights abuse which he says changed his aspirations forever.

Mr Roh was asked to defend one of two dozen students arrested for possessing banned literature, for which they were detained and tortured for almost two months.

“When I saw their horrified eyes and their missing toenails, my comfortable life as a lawyer came to an end,” Mr Roh is quoted as saying.

This will in my estimation destabilize and demoralize Korea. The present conservative government is not what Korea needs. In Asian terms, Roh has cleaned the slate of charges against him and his party… but is there a generation of leadership to follow?

Posted in Korea, Sad things | 1 Comment »

Tom Ridge Must Be Trying For The Sane Indie Vote In 2012

Posted by Phoenix Woman on May 23, 2009

That’s what this video says to me.

He won’t get any Republicans — not yet, they’re still too fixated on thinking that they need to be even farther right than they are now — but he might prepare the ground for a saner GOP come 2016.

Posted in terrorism, torture | Comments Off on Tom Ridge Must Be Trying For The Sane Indie Vote In 2012

What’s wrong with the Department of Justice?

Posted by Charles II on May 23, 2009

First count, conspiracy to deprive defendant of civil rights. Scott Horton:

U.W. Clemon, formerly Alabama’s most senior federal judge, has written a scorching letter to Attorney General Eric Holder itemizing gross misconduct by federal prosecutors involved in the Siegelman case and demanding that the Justice Department open a full investigation into the matter. “The 2004 prosecution of Mr. Siegelman in the Northern District of Alabama was the most unfounded criminal case over which I presided in my entire judicial career,” he writes. “In my judgment, his prosecution was completely without legal merit; and it could not have been accomplished without the approval of the Department of Justice.” Clemon goes on to note that prosecutors engaged in judicial forum shopping, attempted to poison the jury pool, and filed and pressed bogus charges….

In recent weeks, a panel of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed five of seven counts of the Siegelman conviction in an opinion issued by three Republican judges. The case was referred back to a fourth Republican judge, Mark E. Fuller, for re-sentencing. The ruling prompted further cries for a reexamination of the case, as 75 former attorneys general from 40 states, both Democrats and Republicans, wrote Holder noting gross irregularities in the case and improper conduct by prosecutors who secured the conviction….

Attorney General Holder’s office advised the Huffington Post that notwithstanding the long-standing allegations of prosecutorial misconduct, now amplified by a large group of attorneys general and the state’s former senior federal judge, the Justice Department had no investigation of the accusations underway.

Second count, conspiracy to give aid and support to America’s enemies. Naomi Seligman of CREW:

Earlier today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) learned that the Obama administration is opposing our request that the Supreme Court reconsider the dismissal of the lawsuit, Wilson v. Libby, et al. In that case, the district court had dismissed the claims of Joe and Valerie Wilson against former Vice President Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Scooter Libby and Richard Armitage for their gross violations of the Wilsons’ constitutional rights. Agreeing with the Bush administration, the Obama Justice Department argues the Wilsons have no legitimate grounds to sue….In fact, the Obama administration has gone one step further, suggesting Mr. Wilson failed to provide any evidence that Mr. Cheney, Mr. Rove or Mr. Libby harmed him.

Posted in Democrats, Department of Injustice, Valerie Plame | 6 Comments »

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