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Working Assets - Disturbing "Progressive" Long Distance Program
vanity | April 12, 2004 | ntnychik

Posted on 04/12/2004 9:10:16 PM PDT by ntnychik

I got some really disturbing mail today from something called Working Assets Long Distance. If you join their long distance telephone plan, you get a free pint of Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream every month for a year, 60 free minutes of long distance for 3 months, paid connection fee, free calls every day to targeted decision-makers, and 1% of charges to progressive nonprofit groups.

"Progressive organizations" that were listed were ACLU, Stand for Children, Rainforest Action Network, Greenpeace, Doctors without Borders, Amnesty International, Center for Economic Justice, Planned Parenthood, Sweatshop Watch, and Children's Defense Fund (of Marian Wright Edelman and Hillary fame).

The final page of the three page insert says, "Check the boxes, and we'll send low-cost CitizenLetters on your behalf." Examples of checkboxes are "protect water supply" and "Fund Public Broadcasting." A detachable coupon to enclose with payment will include two issues a month. Here are the blurbs for the two mentioned:

Keep Sewage Out of Drinking Water

The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed the relaxation of national sewage-treatment standards. The new rules would allow treatment plants to skip critical sanitation measures when it rains and pump pathogen-filled sewage directly into lakes, rivers and coastal waters. that would mean more disease-causing parasites, bacteria and viruses in your drinking water supply. Urge EPA Commissioner Leavitt to protect our water supply.

Increase Funding for Public Broadcasting Public broadcasters provide an oasis of thoughtful news commentary and culture amid the racket of commercial programming. The federal government supports public broadcasting through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB). But Congress has neglected to reauthorize the CPB for the last six years, and funding has lagged badly behind what's needed. Urge your Senator to reauthorize and increase funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The page says "Just check the box on your bill and we'll send a low-cost, well-argued CitizenLetter for you." Other quotes are: "Call targeted decision-makers FREE any day of the week and we'll pay for the call." "Round up your check--it's an easy way to increase support for progressive causes."

Other services:

Read hot-off-the-wire progressive news (WorkingForChange)

Shop and give back at the same time (ShopForChange)

Give decision-makers a piece of your mind (ActForChange)

A page of address labels was included with the mailing. The labels have symbols for environment, peace, human rights, equality, and education. At the bottom of the sticker sheet is written "Your Vote Matters. Not every candidate wins. But every voter does. If you aren't registered to vote, please do so at" a website they provided.

The whole mailing flacks the "progressive" agenda under the guise of normal business solicitation.

A google search of Working Assets includes a mention of voter registration and change of voting registration services.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: New York
KEYWORDS: cfr; left; liberal; longdistance; pike; progressiveorgs; tidescenter; workingassets
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This group operates out of San Francisco (where else?) Are any of you familiar with this? Is this part of Campaign Finance Reform? This is a nightmare.
1 posted on 04/12/2004 9:10:16 PM PDT by ntnychik
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To: ntnychik; PhiKapMom; Howlin; MeekOneGOP; Mo1; ohioWfan; Miss Marple
Excellent post.
EXPOSE' alert.

Please ping your lists.
2 posted on 04/12/2004 9:15:47 PM PDT by onyx (Kerry' s a Veteran, but so were Lee Harvey Oswald, Timothy McVeigh and Benedict Arnold)
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To: ntnychik; MeekOneGOP; onyx; My2Cents; JohnHuang2; Dog Gone; Dog; isthisnickcool; OKSooner; VOA; ...
FYI!
3 posted on 04/12/2004 9:17:02 PM PDT by PhiKapMom (AOII Mom -- Support Bush-Cheney '04 -- Losing is not an Option!)
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To: 1Mike; 3catsanadog; ~Vor~; ~Kim4VRWC's~; A CA Guy; A Citizen Reporter; abner; Aeronaut; AFPhys; ...
Wow, look at this:



San Francisco, CA, November 17, 2000 (DLD Digest) - A national ad campaign launched by Working Assets, a San Francisco-based long-distance, credit card and online services company, calls on Florida election officials to do whatever it takes to count every vote in the presidential election.

Take your pick:

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=working+assets+long+distance

4 posted on 04/12/2004 9:20:04 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: ntnychik
Shed light on them and they will melt wax in the sun.
5 posted on 04/12/2004 9:25:56 PM PDT by A CA Guy (God Bless America, God bless and keep safe our fighting men and women.)
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To: onyx
Is this legal???
6 posted on 04/12/2004 9:29:02 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: ntnychik
'ACLU, Stand for Children, Rainforest Action Network, Greenpeace, Doctors without Borders, Amnesty International, Center for Economic Justice, Planned Parenthood, Sweatshop Watch, and Children's Defense Fund'

All pretty-smelling, anti-American organizations with a mile-deep alterior agenda beneath the inch-deep veneer that they present to the public.


7 posted on 04/12/2004 9:34:36 PM PDT by Viking2002
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To: Mo1; jmstein7; Torie
Is this legal?






I have no idea.
8 posted on 04/12/2004 9:35:19 PM PDT by onyx (Kerry' s a Veteran, but so were Lee Harvey Oswald, Timothy McVeigh and Benedict Arnold)
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To: ntnychik
From HOOVERS Biz info.....

Working Assets Funding Service, Inc.

101 Market St. Ste. 700

San Francisco, CA 94105 (Map)

Phone: 415-369-2000

Fax: 415-371-1046

Toll Free: 800-788-8588

http://www.workingforchange.com

Covered by Editorial Staff

Working Assets Funding Service works to fund political causes. Working Assets Long Distance resells phone services and donates 1% of customers' charges to politically active and philanthropic nonprofit groups. The Working Assets Credit Card allows users to do their shopping and donate 10 cents for each transaction. Customers can nominate nonprofit groups to receive funding. Working Assets also provides information on political issues. Since its founding in 1985 by Laura Scher, Michael Kieschnick, and Peter Barnes as a spinoff of the Working Assets money-market fund, the company has raised more than $30 million in donations for such organizations as Greenpeace, Amnesty International, and Planned Parenthood.

9 posted on 04/12/2004 9:35:34 PM PDT by goodnesswins (Tagging you.....)
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To: Howlin
The offer sounds perfect for every liberal I know.....just sign up and someone will do your thinking and writing for you, you never have to know what's going on, you never have to make a decision.

They're all ignorant and happy in it. The liberal activists think we are all just as stupid and passive as their own followers.
10 posted on 04/12/2004 9:37:11 PM PDT by WaterDragon
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To: ntnychik
Here is there website with those promotions .. They are claiming 35 million in donations since 1985

Working Assets

11 posted on 04/12/2004 9:37:53 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: goodnesswins
Dian J. Harrison
President and CEO of Planned Parenthood, Golden Gate.
Working Assets customer since 1999

"We have a very close working relationship with Working Assets. The turn in the economy has really made a difference in terms of fund-raising. We did okay last year, but we knew that coming into this current fiscal year, it would be a little tougher. Working Assets support has made a difference."

12 posted on 04/12/2004 9:40:56 PM PDT by kcvl
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To: Mo1
Also has ties with

Amnesty International

13 posted on 04/12/2004 9:44:07 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: Mo1
Introducing the 50 Nonprofit Groups We're Supporting in 2004


Alliance for Responsible Trade
Americans for Peace Now
Amnesty International
Center for Victims of Torture
Doctors Without Borders (France)
Global Fund for Women
Grassroots International
Peace Action
Physicians for Social Responsibility
WITNESS


AlterNet
American Civil Liberties Union
Educators for Social Responsibility
Internews Network
National Center for Science Education
Parents for Public Schools
People for the American Way
Reporters Without Borders
TomPaine.com
Women's eNews



American Rivers
EarthRights International
Friends of the Earth
Greenpeace
League of Conservation Voters
Organic Farming Research Foundation
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility
Sierra Club
WildAid
Wilderness Watch


America’s Second Harvest
Center for Community Change
Children’s Defense Fund
Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
Corporation for Supportive Housing
CorpWatch
Disability Rights Advocates
Family Violence Prevention Fund
Sweatshop Watch
United for a Fair Economy



American Immigration Law Foundation
Center for Reproductive Rights
Ella Baker Center for Human Rights
Equal Rights Advocates
Innocence Project
International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission
Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund
Marijuana Policy Project
NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund
Planned Parenthood (Affiliates)




14 posted on 04/12/2004 9:45:16 PM PDT by kcvl
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To: onyx
Sure its legal, unless it is viewed as an anti-competitive "tying arrangement" under the antitrust laws. This puppy doesn't qualify. There is no law about a company offering a no pain way to further their left wing agenda, or whatever political agenda, if only you buy their product. It is about about freedom. The small print bit is a bit annoying. So many statutes, so many cases, so much ensuing fine print, that nobody reads, except the judge or jury in a trial. It is all just grist for my mill.
15 posted on 04/12/2004 9:46:50 PM PDT by Torie
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To: ntnychik; devolve; MeekOneGOP; WKB; TEXOKIE; dixiechick2000; Happy2BMe; PhilDragoo
Glad you posted this ntnychik, the liberals will try anything!
16 posted on 04/12/2004 9:48:10 PM PDT by potlatch ( Medals do not make a man. Morals do.)
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To: kcvl
http://www.thedigest.com/more/122/122-91.html

Editorial Follow-Up
It's one thing for a long distance company to contribute money to charities, but it's another thing altogether to support slanted political views. I used to like Working Assets' ideals, but they have swung so far to the left as to completely alienate not only conservatives, but the average American as well.

Some of the causes that they "donate" money to (it's really the customers who are footing the bill) are not ones that the average citizen would probably want their money going towards. I think that they would do better to stick to less personal politics and focus their efforts on causes that everyone would agree are worthwhile.


17 posted on 04/12/2004 9:48:35 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: Torie; Mo1
Thanks Torie.
Mo, please see #15.
18 posted on 04/12/2004 9:49:38 PM PDT by onyx (Kerry' s a Veteran, but so were Lee Harvey Oswald, Timothy McVeigh and Benedict Arnold)
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To: kcvl
http://www.internews.org/prs/Misc/working_assets_040128.html

Internews Selected as a Working Assets Donation Recipient
(January 28, 2004) Working Assets has selected Internews Network, an international non-profit organization that supports open media worldwide, as one of its donation recipients, with funds to be distributed in early 2005.

“Internews Network has been selected in part because we are confident that you will use the money well in a way that helps all of us,” said Working Assets President Michael Kieschnick.

Internews’ most recent projects include “Reporting for Humanity,” focusing on training young Arab reporters in how to report on conflict in a way that reduces the potential for violence, and “Hear My Voice,” training women radio journalists in Pakistan to report on gender issues.

Working Assets is a long distance, wireless, credit card and broadcasting company that was created in 1985 with the purpose of building a world that is more just, humane and environmentally sustainable. The company donates a portion of its revenue to nonprofit groups working for peace, human rights, equality, education and the environment.

Internews was nominated by one of Working Assets’ customers and selected by an internal process involving 107 employees and the board of directors.

The allocation of funds each year is determined solely by a vote of Working Assets’ customers who generate donations by making long distance calls, charging purchases on Working Assets credit cards, and other similar activities.

19 posted on 04/12/2004 10:01:15 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: onyx
Got it .. thanks
20 posted on 04/12/2004 10:01:46 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: onyx; ntnychik
It just doesn't sound legal, that if you just check a box, they can send 'things' out in your name.

What 'dum-dum' would allow that to be done?

Guess there's a lot of them out there!
21 posted on 04/12/2004 10:02:03 PM PDT by potlatch ( Medals do not make a man. Morals do.)
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To: ntnychik; Dog; Molly Pitcher; JohnHuang2; ABG(anybody but Gore); Neets; Bitwhacker; M Kehoe; ...
FYI
22 posted on 04/12/2004 10:02:13 PM PDT by kayak (Stop FReepathons. Become a monthly donor.)
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To: kcvl
http://www.american-partisan.com/cols/2004/king/qtr1/0331.htm

Mr. Pike, who fancies himself an uber anti-capitalist, nonetheless is spectacularly successful in running his Foundations. Pike’s personal income from his positions as President of the Tides Center and President and Director of the Tides Foundation amount to over $103,000 in salary and $22,126 in benefits annually. Pike has also profited from establishing for-profit companies which donate a portion of their income to Tides. Pike’s “Working Assets” company sells credit cards, long distance phone service and mutual funds. In 1995, Working Assets gave away “Stop Newt” phone cards containing 10 minutes of phone time so that the recipient could phone Congress to protest the Republican plans for welfare reform
23 posted on 04/12/2004 10:06:57 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: ntnychik
I guarantee you this will end up costing more that your average LD service and will only attract those of the stupi... I mean liberal bent with lots of cash to burn. IMO, like all liberal drivel, conservatives should figure out HOW to help it burn more cash. If they have an 800 number, you could engage them in a LENGTHY discussion of just how effective "your" progressive dollars will be.

In the case of unsolicited mailed offers, see how much finely shredded junk mail you can pack into the postage paid return envelope. My personal best is around 6 ounces...
24 posted on 04/12/2004 10:10:14 PM PDT by Axenolith
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To: onyx
Guess who the founder of Working Assets has ties to



http://www.patriot-paradox.com/archives/000532.html

* Back in 1985, Drummond Pike and two colleagues started the Working Assets Funding Service, a for-profit company whose family of credit-card, mutual fund, and long-distance telephone services have grown into a $130 million business. Working Assets lures consumers (over 400,000 so far) with promises of “socially responsible” commerce. A two-percent cut of the profits go to activist causes -- funneled, of course, through the Tides Foundation.

25 posted on 04/12/2004 10:10:53 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: Mo1
Tides is involved with this?
26 posted on 04/12/2004 10:11:50 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: goodnesswins
101 Market St. Ste. 700

I'd be willing to bet dollars to donuts they give a fat chunck to anti gun groups too...

27 posted on 04/12/2004 10:13:02 PM PDT by Axenolith
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To: Mo1
I bet they outsource work! lol
28 posted on 04/12/2004 10:13:56 PM PDT by Fledermaus ( Frm ^;;^ says, "John Kerry could bore a rock to erosion!")
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To: Mo1; onyx; Diddle E. Squat
http://www.workingforchange.com/shop/index.cfm

Here is that scam again!
29 posted on 04/12/2004 10:15:25 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: Howlin
YEP
30 posted on 04/12/2004 10:15:46 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: Mo1; Howlin; All
Excellent information. Thanks!

Tides! But of course.
31 posted on 04/12/2004 10:16:19 PM PDT by ntnychik
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To: Torie
Will you look at #29. Does that mean Lands End and B&N are donating money every time we purchase something online?
32 posted on 04/12/2004 10:16:42 PM PDT by Howlin
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To: ntnychik
Shop and give back at the same time

Isn't giving back part of the standard shopping protocol? I thought anything else was shoplifting.

33 posted on 04/12/2004 10:16:56 PM PDT by MattAMiller
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To: Fledermaus
Military Families Speak Out Dover AFB to DC protest (Peaceful Tomorrows, et. al. at it again!)

http://209.157.64.200/focus/f-news/1097419/posts

funding comes from these organizations - that I've found so far

The Paul & Edith Babson Foundation * The Bydale Foundation * Colombe Foundation * Janelia Foundation * The HKH Foundation * The New World Foundation * Peace Development Fund * Ploughshares Fund * Iraq Peace Fund, Underdog Fund, Tides Foundation * The Scherman Foundation, Inc. * Sisters of St. Joseph of the Third Order of St. Francis * Unitarian Universalist Funding Program * Courtney Knight Gaines Foundation * Sisters of Loretto * Dominican Sisters of Springfield Illinois * Working Assets Long Distance
34 posted on 04/12/2004 10:17:34 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: MattAMiller
McCain and Bush should have included a ban on such liberal Activity in their Campaign Finance Reform Bill.
35 posted on 04/12/2004 10:23:50 PM PDT by jsbankston
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To: Howlin
I suspect it is only if you do it through that website as the source. Just a guess. I don't see how Lands End being identified as a contributor to one political ideology every time you buy from them is a good business model. Maybe a majority of backpackers,etc. are liberals, but enough are Pubbies, and after all Pubbies tend to have some discretionary spending money, that it simply does not make sense, particularly for a mail order house (I use Lands End myself, and it is a life saver), who certain males use more and more rather than endure shopping during the Xmas madness, because such males hate to shop, and particularly hate to shop when too many other noisome homo sapiens are too nearby.
36 posted on 04/12/2004 10:28:34 PM PDT by Torie
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To: Howlin
Not as I read it, the donations are only on online purchases made via their website to those merchants.

http://www.workingforchange.com/shop/aboutshop.cfm

But it does look like Barnes & Nobles does give a 3% referral fee to working4sparechange.com. Guess they don't need my business.

http://www.workingforchange.com/shop/aboutshop.cfm



37 posted on 04/12/2004 10:29:26 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Torie
In the past there have been similar setups with political sites setting up a portal and getting a referral fee from a merchant for each purchase, which these political websites marketed as implied support from these merchants. When contacted with complaints, many of these merchants claimed to be unaware that they were being presented as supporters, and asked the websites to remove the links. I wonder if B&N and Lands End are similarly unaware?
38 posted on 04/12/2004 10:33:35 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Diddle E. Squat
Your theory makes sense. It is a horrible business model for those that are not hawking a clearly ideological product, unless that was the original business model, ala Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream. Their ice cream is great by the way, but high fat ice cream kills aging men, and thus it is easy for me to just say no.
39 posted on 04/12/2004 10:36:20 PM PDT by Torie
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To: jsbankston
McCain and Bush should have included a ban on such liberal Activity in their Campaign Finance Reform Bill.

Why? It is just another way of raising funds. As long as all involved are willing participants, more power to them. For example, why shouldn't a Christian website be allow to setup a similar gig, with 5% of the proceeds going to Operation Rescue?

40 posted on 04/12/2004 10:37:26 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: Torie
but high fat ice cream kills aging men, and thus it is easy for me to just say no.

Hence one of the fringe benefits of belief in Heaven (or upwardly-mobile reincarnation), much easier to rationalize taking those kind of risks.

41 posted on 04/12/2004 10:41:15 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: kcvl

http://www.consciouschoice.com/issues/cc1611/wiredforchange1611.html
Another organization promoting cyber activism is Working Assets, a long-distance telephone company with a social conscience and revenue of $133 million in 2002. Since 1985, Working Assets has raised $35 million for donations to progressive nonprofit groups. With its "flash activism network," Working Assets, under their ActForChange banner, organized almost 100,000 people to e-mail congressional leaders about the war. "Online activism is crucial," said ActForChange Director Jennifer Willis, who is now working on a massive voter registration effort for the coming presidential race. "Online activism is evolving... and it's here to stay."

"We've already had some huge victories," said Willis, noting that the campaign to get ultraconservative Miguel Estrada's name withdrawn from nomination to the U.S. Court of Appeals for Washington, D.C., was largely won on the strength of the cyber campaign.

These three organizations -- MoveOn, TrueMajority and ActForChange -- together dominate the current field of cyber activism. They were each founded by entrepreneurs and are therefore observed to have certain traits in common, including a high tolerance for risk, a passion for hard work and efficiency, a willingness to fail, and a knowledge that failure can lead to big things. (The same cannot be said for most nonprofit organizations, whose leaders typically need to spend lots of time building consensus and pleasing funders.)

42 posted on 04/12/2004 10:45:21 PM PDT by Mo1 (Make Michael Moore cry.... DONATE MONTHLY!!!)
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To: kayak
I got an offer the other day for a Visa card..........no annual fee, low interest rate, blah, blah, blah. The kicker? 1% of all charges will be donated to the DNC. The letter was signed by no less than Terry McAwful.

I'm trying to decide on the proper response. Open to suggestions.

43 posted on 04/12/2004 10:51:56 PM PDT by MozartLover (Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.)
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To: PhiKapMom
This political affinity marketing has been going on for quite some time. It is nothing more than a clever marketing ploy. I wouldn't be surprised if the guy's cousin is running a conservative version of the same thing.

I worked inbound sales for an affinity long distance company. The same product was marketed to the 2nd Amendment Foundation and the the Gay PRIDE network.
44 posted on 04/12/2004 10:53:39 PM PDT by shempy (_+----|| - > Dig Knit < - ||----+_)
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To: MozartLover
Tear it up and send it back!
45 posted on 04/12/2004 10:56:30 PM PDT by kcvl
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To: MozartLover
If you got a postage prepaid envelope, simply make it as heavy as possible with RNC agitprop paper, and cat litter paper, or whatever, and send it back. The perp will have to pay for the postage.
46 posted on 04/12/2004 11:04:06 PM PDT by Torie
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To: Howlin; Mo1
OMG. Kerry is a wuss compared to these people. They're evil personified and they're determined to destroy President Bush, if that means destroying the country in the process they won't hesitate a moment. It is frightening to me how very large, organized and multi-layered they are. We will have to put forth an effort every bit as strong as in 2000 and that includes doubling up on the prayers.
47 posted on 04/12/2004 11:13:02 PM PDT by Darlin' ("I will not forget this wound to my country." President George W Bush, 20 Sept 2001)
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To: kcvl
I may demand they remove me from their mailing list, as I have done with PETA and AARP.......
48 posted on 04/12/2004 11:22:32 PM PDT by MozartLover (Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.)
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To: Torie
LOL! Good idea.:)
49 posted on 04/12/2004 11:22:53 PM PDT by MozartLover (Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.)
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To: Diddle E. Squat
For example, why shouldn't a Christian website be allow to setup a similar gig, with 5% of the proceeds going to Operation Rescue?

Is LifeLine long distance still in business??

50 posted on 04/12/2004 11:57:58 PM PDT by GeronL (Dr.Pepper Fiend)
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