Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

OIY!!! The Liberal [Character] Assassination Ring: The new left-wing conspiracy
The Village Soup ^ | March 10, 2009 | Ben Smith

Posted on 03/13/2009 6:39:37 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

The vast new left-wing conspiracy sets its tone every morning at 8:45 a.m., when officials from more than 20 labor, environmental and other Democratic-leaning groups dial into a private conference call hosted by two left-leaning Washington organizations.

The “8:45 A.M. call,” as it’s referred to by members, began three weeks ago, and it marks a new level in coordination by the White House’s allies at a time when the conservative opposition is struggling for a toe-hold and major agenda items like health care reform appear closer than ever to passage.

The call has helped attempts to link the Republican Party to radio host Rush Limbaugh, and has served as the launching ground for attacks on critics of Obama’s policy proposals. It springs from a recognition of what was lacking in the Clinton years, said Jennifer Palmieri, the senior vice president for communications at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, one of the groups hosting the call.

“[CAP President John] Podesta’s and my experience was in the White House during the Clinton years, and we didn’t have a coordinated echo chamber on the outside backing us up,” she said. “There’s a real interest on the progressive side for groups to want to coordinate with each other and leverage each other’s work in a way I haven’t ever seen before.”

The call is hosted by Progressive Media, a project of the CAP Action Fund and the Media Matters Action Fund. The project began last year as a launching pad for attacks on John McCain, but failed to raise money for television advertisements, and served in the later days of the presidential campaign as a platform for disseminating opposition research critical of his policy plans. White House officials do not take part in the calls.

The calls are led by its top staffer, Tara McGuinness, who will also head Progressive Media's "communications research and analysis war room" to wage spin and policy wars throughout the day, Palmieri said.

The call has proved particularly effective at coordinating attacks on critics, said Jacki Schechner, the national communications director for Health Care for America Now, a labor-backed alliance of groups that support Democratic efforts to expand health care.

“There’s a coordination in terms of exposing the people who are trying to come out against reform —they’ve all got backgrounds and histories and pasts, and it’s not taking long to unearth that and to unleash that, because we’re all working together,” Schechner said.

When a new group called Conservative for Patients Rights, for instance, launched an ad campaign featuring former health care executive Rick Scott, “There was a discussion about what do we know about this guy and in a very quick period of time we were able to come up with his background,” she said.

Scott, as progressive groups quickly informed reporters, had reportedly been forced to resign as head of the company became known as Columbia/HCA amid fraud charges, and the company eventually paid a massive settlement in the case.

When Betsy McCaughey, best known for her attacks on Clinton’s 1993 health care plan, published a column criticizing Obama, groups on the call coordinated attacks on her recalling questions about her 1993 article and noting her seat on the board of a medical device maker, in which she also owned stock.

The results of the new coordination are perhaps most obvious in the ongoing effort to saddle the Republican Party and its allies with radio host Rush Limbaugh’s hope that Obama “fails.” The Center for American Progress’s blog seized on Limbaugh’s “fail” comment early, as did congressional Democrats, and participants in the call drove it well beyond its obvious political range.

Media Matters, for instance, launched a “Limbaugh Wire”; and even the League of Conservation Voters Tuesday released a video in which Limbaugh’s attacks on conservation and global warming theory are played over the talking heads of Republican leaders.

“We know the oil and coal industry are going to spend $20 million this year trying to get their message out there, so us coordinating to get our message out in terms of trying to advance a progressive agenda is a huge opportunity,” said Navin Nayak, the director of the global warming project at the League of Conservation Voters.

Though White House officials do not participate in the calls, Palmieri said, the new infrastructure is closely tied to the White House. Podesta directed Obama’s transition, and Americans United for Change exists largely to run ads promoting the White House agenda. Some on the left, however, remain skeptical of the White House’s embrace.

“When something works for us we'll pick up on it anyway, like the Rush Limbaugh story -- we don't need to be told,” said Jane Hamsher, the creator of the liberal blog Firedoglake. “I think we serve everyone better if we maintain our independence and preserve our ability to pick up on popular sentiment like that, rather than just bang on the same drum everyone else is.”

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: agenda; bloggers; congress; democrats; laborunions; obama; rushlimbaugh; talkradio
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-2021-29 last
To: Ev Reeman
Right. That's the Alinsky method.

Shouting ridicule and presenting "Straw Man" or ad hominem fallacies. And fear mongering or scapegoating.

If you break it down logically and rhetorically basically the argument is:

"Rush Limbaugh says mean things about us."

It doesn't have to be true factually but they will just keep repeating that mantra. It's a variation of Hillary's 1998 Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy theory which basically was: "Mean Republican white guys say nasty things about my husband." Which was a variation of the early 1960s "right-wing extremists" tactic used against Barry Golwater in the '64 election, elaborated in the Professor Richard Hofstadter book on the subject (The Paranoid Style in American Politics). Students of logic anc rhetoric will recognize the "Straw Man" fallacy in the caricature of the conservative opposition in this game, the debate is manipulated from one of disagreements on issues to issues of personality.

The informational content presented is basically:
"We really don't like Rush Limbaugh."

"I thought we were talking about the economy..."

They did the same thing with Palin in the campaign.

21 posted on 03/13/2009 7:31:38 PM PDT by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Bhoy


I sent my first tea bag to Obambi today with many more to follow.

22 posted on 03/13/2009 7:37:35 PM PDT by Rembrandt
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: SnarlinCubBear

‘In the chapter called “Tactics” Alinsky says “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it and polarize it.”’

Remember who was running the opposition efforts during the Bubba years. It wasn’t Bubba. It was ..... Maybe we’re experiencing a repeat.

23 posted on 03/13/2009 7:41:45 PM PDT by Rembrandt
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

O’Reilly went over this in detail tonight. That reaches a lot of people.

24 posted on 03/13/2009 8:33:39 PM PDT by Anti-Bubba182
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet
“Podesta directed Obama’s transition.”

Great job, John.

25 posted on 03/13/2009 9:36:30 PM PDT by Brad from Tennessee ("A politician can't give you anything he hasn't first stolen from you.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet


26 posted on 03/13/2009 11:11:56 PM PDT by GOP Poet
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet
The new left-wing conspiracy flaunting.
It's out in the open and there is no secrecy whatsoever. So much so, in fact, that it's being waved in everybody's face because the leaders of this group believe that there is nothing anybody can do to stop or slow down what they're doing.
There is no conspiracy.
27 posted on 03/14/2009 4:19:06 AM PDT by philman_36 (Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy. Benjamin Franklin)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: philman_36

There’s really nothing new about this tactic and it’s only marginally successful. They “brought down” Bill Bennett over gambling and Bill O’Reilly over that luffa thing but nobody even talks about this stuff anymore.

28 posted on 03/14/2009 4:36:16 AM PDT by cripplecreek (The poor bastards have us surrounded.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: 2ndDivisionVet

Months ago we discussed how 0bama would use these people.

I said he wouldn’t need to coordinate his fascist regimes, they already know what to do.

I can’t help but think about a biblical phrase in this case. They are like all those people who had gathered round to stone the prostitute. If we have “sinned,” we have no Right to speak out in dissent.

Time for us to get to work and help them understand they have NO RIGHT to cast the first stone.

29 posted on 03/14/2009 4:52:20 AM PDT by EBH (The world is a balance between good & evil, your next choice will tip the scale.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-2021-29 last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson