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The Obama Justice Department’s Secret Blogging Team… Is it Illegal?
Right Wing News ^ | 10/7/2009 | Warner Todd Huston

Posted on 10/08/2009 4:27:34 AM PDT by IbJensen

Obama’s Attorney General, Eric Holder, has apparently hired a cadre of left-wing, Democrat campaign bloggers to troll through the Internet looking for news stories and blog posts that denigrate the Obama agenda. After such websites are found it is the job of these secret lefty bloggers to leave comments that come to the support of Obamaism in the comments sections. It seems that Eric Holder has created his own little propaganda unit in a valiant effort to become the Bloggi Riefenstahl of the Obama era.

As reported at The Muffled Oar, a blog that first broke the story of Holder’s secretive blogging unit — dubbed the “Blog Squad” by blogger Isaac Muzzey — Holder has housed this unit in the Office of Public Affairs at the Department of Justice. It also appears that former John Edwards staffer Tracy Russo is part of this special unit.

A site called whorunsgov.com reported back in May that DOJ hired Russo to do “media outreach for the whole department.” It is, according to whorunsgov.com, the first time such an effort has been made at DOJ.

Of Russo’s duties, The Muffled Oar says:

Not only is the Department of Justice Blog Squad going to reach out to nontraditional media like TPM Muckraker or the Muffled Oar, but they are also tasked with fostering anonymous comments at conservative leaning blogs such as the Free Republic. They are also tasked with fostering anonymous comments, or comments under pseudonyms, at newspaper websites with stories critical of the Department of Justice, Holder and President Obama.

If indeed this is what DOJ media outreach does it would most certainly qualify as “astroturfing.” Astroturfing is the action of using fake commenters and multiple screen names on all sorts of sites to push a similar opinion to create the appearance of a grass roots movement and make it seem as if there are all sorts of individuals naturally supporting a product or political movement.

It most certainly is a creepy, propagandistic sort of effort that Holder’s office is involved in and it is one that certainly seems an immoral one. After all, it most certainly is lying to the public if there are a handful of DOJ employees casting about on hundreds of different websites pretending that they are just your average citizen coming to the support of the Obama administration. But is it illegal? Hans von Spakovsky of National Review’s the corner blog certainly thinks so.

I doubt that the Office of Public Affairs (OPA) has received an ethics opinion from Justice’s Professional Responsibility Advisory Office (PRAO) saying that it is acceptable for OPA employees to be harassing critics of the department through postings that deliberately hide their DOJ affiliation (a practice that is not very “open” or “transparent”). DOJ lawyers also ought to be aware of ABA Model Rule of Professional Conduct 8.4, which states that it is professional misconduct for a lawyer to engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation. If the report in The Muffled Oar is correct, tax dollars are being used directly for such dishonest, deceitful behavior.

I must say, it’s hard to disagree with von Spakovsky (if that’s his real name! — a little joke there).

Mr. von Spakovsky also makes a perfectly pertinent point to wrap up his blog post on this matter. He wonders if the Obama administration will ever learn the difference between political campaign and the “entirely different responsibility it now has to enforce this nation’s laws in an objective, nonpartisan, nonpolitical manner”?

I think that the question is a good one. After all, after nearly a year in office, we have yet to see the end Obama’s constant blaming of Bush for every little problem he runs up against not to mention the constant campaign speeches and appearances on TV at every hour, day and night. One gets the uneasy feeling that President Barack Obama has yet to put in an actual day’s work as he constantly campaigns for office instead.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bho44; bhodoj; communists; ericholder; illegalgovernment; partyofdeath; propaganda; weblogs
Holder has housed this unit in the Office of Public Affairs at the Department of Justice. It also appears that former John Edwards staffer Tracy Russo is part of this special unit.

Tracy didn't have to worry about getting another government job. Thanks to this scheme the bankrupt federal treasury gets to fund more jobs to decrease that unemployed number.

1 posted on 10/08/2009 4:27:34 AM PDT by IbJensen
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To: IbJensen; Jim Robinson

Jim, have you seen activity which looks like gummit trolls?


2 posted on 10/08/2009 4:29:27 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (ACORN: Absolute Criminal Organization of Reprobate Nuisances)
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To: IbJensen

Is this covered by the new FTC rules on “bloggers” and disclosure?


3 posted on 10/08/2009 4:31:56 AM PDT by DBrow (Thank You Al Gore You Saved Earth!)
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To: IbJensen

Welcome to the USSA

Pray for America


4 posted on 10/08/2009 4:32:22 AM PDT by bray (Hope and Corruption)
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To: IbJensen

There is a website calling for the impeachment of Obama at
http://www.impeachobamacampaign.com.

I just signed up.


5 posted on 10/08/2009 4:32:41 AM PDT by thethirddegree
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To: IbJensen

What? No Blog Czar??


6 posted on 10/08/2009 4:35:56 AM PDT by Merlinator (Take them all down...one czar at a time)
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To: IbJensen

Figures. Makes much more sense of some of our “new” members.


7 posted on 10/08/2009 4:37:05 AM PDT by doodad
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To: IbJensen
Who would want a job like this?

So, what do you do? Well, I am a paid lefty troll on the internet.

I'd rather work for ACORN.

8 posted on 10/08/2009 4:39:43 AM PDT by Jimmy Valentine (DemocRATS - when they speak, they lie; when they are silent, they are stealing the American Dream)
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To: IbJensen

Very informative post, Ib. I hope this spreads to other conservative posts.


9 posted on 10/08/2009 4:40:03 AM PDT by kitkat
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To: IbJensen

If Obie does it, it’s probably illegal or unconstitutional.


10 posted on 10/08/2009 4:41:09 AM PDT by RoadTest (Religion never saved anyone, and never will.)
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To: IbJensen
Greetings and felicitations to all you DOJ Secret Bloggers!


11 posted on 10/08/2009 4:43:53 AM PDT by Charles Martel (NRA Lifetime Member since 1984; TSRA rookie)
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To: IbJensen

It can’t be legal to have taxpayer paid employees of the government doing this.

If Bush had done something like this the left would have come unhinged - and rightly so. It should outrage everyone.


12 posted on 10/08/2009 4:44:04 AM PDT by DB
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To: thethirddegree

A usurper can be impeached???

GEORGE WASHINGTON, farewell address, Sep. 19, 1796

� If in the opinion of the People, the distribution or modification of the Constitutional powers be in any particular wrong, let it be corrected by an amendment in the way which the Constitution designates. But let there be no change by *usurpation* ; for though this, in one instance, may be the instrument of good, it is the customary weapon by which free governments are destroyed.�

Ref:
George Washington Quotes II


13 posted on 10/08/2009 4:45:59 AM PDT by gunnyg (SUFFER NO FOOLS -Gunny G)
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To: DB

I predict that as these America-hating communists who are ruling and deliberately ruining this nation are going to face a backlash that will flabbergast them as they’re trotted out of DC, covered with feathers and tar.


14 posted on 10/08/2009 4:46:22 AM PDT by IbJensen (If Catholic voters were true to their faith there would be no abortion and no President Obama.)
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To: IbJensen
“He wonders if the Obama administration will ever learn the difference between political campaign and the “entirely different responsibility it now has to enforce this nation’s laws in an objective, nonpartisan, nonpolitical manner”?”

I wonder if use of government offices, computers, and salaries for “campaign” activities isn't covered under campaign finance laws? Oh wait, they're DemonRATs, exempt from ethics laws.

15 posted on 10/08/2009 4:49:52 AM PDT by bitterohiogunclinger (America held hostage - day 163)
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To: IbJensen

I can think of a few screen names that are questionably Blog Squad members.


16 posted on 10/08/2009 4:50:05 AM PDT by autumnraine (You can't fix stupid, but you can vote it out!)
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To: autumnraine

Post them! Why not?


17 posted on 10/08/2009 4:51:06 AM PDT by IbJensen (If Catholic voters were true to their faith there would be no abortion and no President Obama.)
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To: thethirddegree

Me too. I spread the word to all my contacts.


18 posted on 10/08/2009 4:51:37 AM PDT by IbJensen (If Catholic voters were true to their faith there would be no abortion and no President Obama.)
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To: bitterohiogunclinger

You mean Democrats, exempt from ANY law.


19 posted on 10/08/2009 4:52:44 AM PDT by autumnraine (You can't fix stupid, but you can vote it out!)
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To: IbJensen
NO this is not legal.
This has been posted a couple times already and some FReepers have found the specific parts of the US Code that says this is a no-no.

The only problem is, Eric Holder won't put himself in jail. And Barry sure as hell ain't gonna fire him.

20 posted on 10/08/2009 4:53:08 AM PDT by Condor51 (The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: DB

The left will never ever condemn actions taken in the name of furthering their leftist agenda.


21 posted on 10/08/2009 4:55:31 AM PDT by comps4spice (The Democrat party is a criminal enterprise--ACORN is just one of their front groups.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck; IbJensen; Jim Robinson
It would be wise to collect the IP address of any DOJ or White House user to share with other conservative sites. Then, block the range known to be assigned to the DOJ and WH, while keeping track of attempts in the range.

I agree with this post, if this is not illegal, it is highly unethical, probably immoral, is a total waste of taxpayer money, and reeks of fascism.

22 posted on 10/08/2009 4:57:14 AM PDT by uncommonsense (Liberals see what they believe; conservatives believe what they see.)
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To: comps4spice

They won’t, until someone screws up and they find themselves the victim.


23 posted on 10/08/2009 5:00:09 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (ACORN: Absolute Criminal Organization of Reprobate Nuisances)
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To: Condor51

Maybe Gomer Pyle can CITIZENS ARREST! CITIZENS AREEST!


24 posted on 10/08/2009 5:00:35 AM PDT by screaminsunshine (!!)
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To: Condor51

Impeach! Impeach!


25 posted on 10/08/2009 5:00:47 AM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (ACORN: Absolute Criminal Organization of Reprobate Nuisances)
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To: screaminsunshine
*** Maybe Gomer Pyle can CITIZENS ARREST! CITIZENS AREEST! ***

:-)
When the 'feces hits the ventilator', that just Maaaaay happen.

26 posted on 10/08/2009 5:10:02 AM PDT by Condor51 (The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: IbJensen

Who’s funding them? If they are being funded by Bammy or $oro$, it’s not illegal - although housing these folks in a gubmint building might be. If WE are funding them through tax dollars, then there is no question about its status - it’s illegal as the day is long.

Another reason we need to overturn this government and hit the “reset” button to return to the original government foundation established by the Founding Fathers with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Every Amendment after the Tenth is not assured of remaining in force after we hit “reset”.


27 posted on 10/08/2009 5:10:38 AM PDT by DustyMoment (FloriDUH - proud inventors of pregnant/hanging chads and judicide!!)
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To: Merlinator
What? No Blog Czar??

If we know Bammy, it's in the works. Probably hiring someone from ACORN.

28 posted on 10/08/2009 5:11:40 AM PDT by DustyMoment (FloriDUH - proud inventors of pregnant/hanging chads and judicide!!)
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To: HiTech RedNeck
*** Impeach! Impeach! ***

That works for me. All we need to do it take the House back in 2010 plus a couple seats in the senate.

But Biden would have to go too. Holder prolly has a file on him.

29 posted on 10/08/2009 5:12:54 AM PDT by Condor51 (The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: Condor51
Remember how the left went wild when the FBIs cointelpro program to disrupt commies became known? This is exactly the same thing except done in cyberspace. IT IS ILLEGAL if the idea is to input ideas or disrupt lawful protest. It is not illegal to monitor sites both on the left and right. So, if this has gone to the disruption phase, all these scum should be put in jail.

Vince

30 posted on 10/08/2009 5:24:17 AM PDT by Mouton
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To: Condor51

Maybe Free Republic has standing to sue to shut down the unit for defacing the website, if in fact that is occurring.


31 posted on 10/08/2009 5:36:22 AM PDT by Buchal ("Two wings of the same bird of prey . . .")
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To: Condor51
Eric's real fear is that some of the pukes he's brought into DOJ with him will come into his office one day and turn him into meat.

Have you seen some of those people's resumes? Far left, pro-criminal, like bombs a lot ....... and then there are the ones we know are soft on porn, soft on rape, soft on pedophilia.....

Not that Eric fears them yet but he really should.

Eric's "Obama Truth Squad" people have been in here quite regularly. I always report them when I one of them addresses me, and sometimes I report them when they address someone else (depending on time of day and nature of the discussion).

They usually "disappear" in moments thanks to the good work of the site moderators.

32 posted on 10/08/2009 5:48:18 AM PDT by muawiyah (qui)
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To: Mouton
*** Remember how the left went wild when the FBIs cointelpro program to disrupt commies became known? ***

I don't recall a specific program name but I do recall that the FBI and all Police are forbidden from even filming or taping gubmint protesters.

In Chicago the CPD had the 'Red Squad'(1). They'd film and/or try to infiltrate anti War (Vietnam) groups. They were found out and the Fed courts went nuts. Ordered everything destroyed and the squad disbanded post haste.

(1) I had a casual friend who was on it. After the Red Squad he became an Undercover Outlaw Biker Narc. Needless to say he led a very dangerous life. He turned me on to 'Super Vel' ammo (wish that was still made). That was back in the mid 70's and everyone in our circle of friends 'carried'.

33 posted on 10/08/2009 5:49:54 AM PDT by Condor51 (The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: muawiyah
*** Have you seen some of those people's resumes? Far left, pro-criminal, like bombs a lot ....... and then there are the ones we know are soft on porn, soft on rape, soft on pedophilia..... ***

Yep. He picked a fine bunch to work 'In Justice'. They should be in prison or a mental institution.

*** Eric's "Obama Truth Squad" people have been in here quite regularly. I always report them when I one of them addresses me, and sometimes I report them when they address someone else (depending on time of day and nature of the discussion). ***

I'm leery of all the Newbies. A lot of suspicious sign-ups back in the summer and fall of 08, they came here in droves. And their FR 'about pages' are still all blank, not even a state flag. I mostly ignore them.

34 posted on 10/08/2009 6:08:37 AM PDT by Condor51 (The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: IbJensen

Well, for one thing, it’s pretty bad when you have to hire (for money or not) someone to stand up for you. If there aren’t people who will do this kind of thing out of personal conviction alone, what does that say about Obama?


35 posted on 10/08/2009 6:32:54 AM PDT by MizSterious (Do you not think an angel rides in the whirlwind and directs this storm? John Page, 1744-1808)
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To: IbJensen

And one more thing—conservatives should ridicule this practice in the most humiliating of terms. “Obama—so bad he has to HIRE people to support him!”


36 posted on 10/08/2009 6:34:20 AM PDT by MizSterious (Do you not think an angel rides in the whirlwind and directs this storm? John Page, 1744-1808)
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To: IbJensen; Willie Green; dirtboy

Is this why Willie Green is back with his same old high speed train stuff ?


37 posted on 10/08/2009 2:57:02 PM PDT by jimt
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To: jimt
Is this why Willie Green is back with his same old high speed train stuff ?

Hey, if George W. Bush had taken my advice back in Y2K,
he would've been elected for a third term in office.
But he didn't listen to me, and LOOK what happened...

38 posted on 10/08/2009 3:04:13 PM PDT by Willie Green (Go Pat Go!!!)
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To: Condor51
Don't ignore them. Challenge them ~ as in "Advance and be recognized" as you chamber a round.

Might as well do that now as later when they start visting you at home. We sure don't want that.

39 posted on 10/08/2009 3:06:29 PM PDT by muawiyah (qui)
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To: IbJensen
BTW - we know that the thugs in the WH believe it's not only okay - but are determined to collect names of those who oppose them -

They tried it blatantly and openly - but the outrage shut that down.That does not for a minute mean they aren't doing it - they just went ‘underground’ -

One way to do it is to collect names via email adds/ISP’s = and where better for leads than on FR and such venues?

Be very aware of posting directing you to links that look innocent and friendly/simpatico.

I clicked on one in FR yesterday that took me directly to my email! rather than replying - I spammed it - and from now on, I will copy/paste and do a web search to see if it's legit - then I decide where or not to link - but it won't be linked to my email box where my - and everyone in my addresses - can be captured.\

BTW after the link to my email box yesterday, I ran my spy ware and up came a Trojan - I have not had a Trojan in months - SO?????

Beware, be vigilant. We are up against an evil and dangerous enemy - it's hard for us to get our minds around it, but there it is.

This Internet is our greatest tool of communicating and quickly dispersing information. But like all great things, it can also be deadly - water sustains life but you can drown in it. Fire keeps us warm but.....

There are also evil entities that use the INternet against us.

BE AWARE

40 posted on 10/11/2009 8:18:13 AM PDT by maine-iac7 ("He has the right to criticize who has the heart to help" LINCOLN)
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