Patterico's Pontifications

8/25/2008

Obama Asks DOJ to Investigate Critical Political Ad (Updated)

Filed under: 2008 Election,Civil Liberties,Constitutional Law — DRJ @ 3:23 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Politico reports Barack Obama has requested the Justice Department to begin a criminal investigation of the American Issues Project, its officers and directors, and its anonymous donors, presumably including its financier Harold Simmons (who was also a donor to the Swift Boat Vets), for airing negative ads about him:

“Sen. Barack Obama has launched an all-out effort to block a Republican billionaire’s efforts to tie him to domestic and foreign terrorists in a wave of negative television ads.

Obama’s campaign has written the Department of Justice demanding a criminal investigation of the “American Issues Project,” the vehicle through which Dallas investor Harold Simmons is financing the advertisements. The Obama campaign — and tens of thousands of supporters — also is pressuring television networks and affiliates to reject the ads.
***
The ad focuses on Obama’s relationship with Bill Ayers, a Hyde Park acquaintance at whose home Obama attended a gathering early in his political career. Ayers is a complicated figure: professor and adviser to the mayor of Chicago despite not having repented his past as a domestic terrorist with the Weather Underground.

“How much do your really know about Barack Obama? What does he really believe?” asks the ad, which also uses imagery from the Al-Qaeda terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

“Why would Barack Obama be friends with someone who bombed the Capitol and is proud of it?” asks the ad’s narrator.”

CNN, Fox News, and at least one local channel have refused to air the ad after receiving pressure from the Obama campaign.

As the Instapundit says, they said there would be efforts to quash speech after George W. Bush was elected President. They were right.

UPDATE 8/26/2008: Counsel for the American Issues Project has issued a firm response to the Obama campaign’s request for an investigation. (H/T Rick Ballard.)

— DRJ

154 Responses to “Obama Asks DOJ to Investigate Critical Political Ad (Updated)”

  1. Just a criminal investigation? Not an inquisition for heresy?

    nk (3c7a86)

  2. Another terrible decision by The Messiah – by attempting to stifle free speech (no matter how noxious one may think it is), he’s showing his true colors. What is he afraid of, you have to ask yourself at this point in time. As usual, for the uber Lefty crowd, it’s free speech for me, but not for thee.

    Dmac (874677)

  3. Hello.

    I would like to put a link to your site on my blog roll if you want to do the same for mine. It would be a good way to build up both of our readerships.

    thank you.

    Jeff Atkinson (bacef3)

  4. They must really be worried about this.

    Even Talk Left is pointing out the sense of entitlement these people have. They are outraged even while they attack McCain’s family and try to raise a fuss about his divorce after he came back from the POW camp. I wonder how many know that his first wife had been married before and he adopted her two sons from her first marriage. Those two boys are still close to him after 30 years.

    I think Obama had better batten down and think twice about poking that hornet’s nest.

    Mike K (6d4fc3)

  5. I wish acquaintances of mine would make me CEOs of multimillion-dollar “charities”.

    andycanuck (10f327)

  6. Hello.

    I am a jackass with a totally unrelated website. Link me. It would be stupid, but do it.

    thank you

    ———-

    In other news, this action by Obama is extremely offensive if Obama doesn’t note what crime he insists has occurred. Is this to be another witchhunt with no crime, where the investigator asks questions until someone is inconsistent, and then just charge them with obstructing an investigation into a non-crime?

    Looks like Obama shares more in common with Putin than his opinion on Georgia. There was nothing untrue in the ad, at least that I’m aware of, so what’s the problem? Ayers is a terrorist, and even the mayor of Chicago notes that Obama is his friend. Obama has had praise for this terrorist. That is a divisive point, but it’s true.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  7. This may be Bambi’s Waterloo – by opening up the line of attack on McCain’s homes, now it’s open season on anything, to his great disadvantage. He can threaten all the legal action he can devise, but you cannot put that genie back in the bottle. You want to sling some mud, you best bring a gun, instead of a pea shooter.

    Dmac (874677)

  8. Hmm…interesting. So if Obama wasn’t going after this horsesh*t as aggressively as possible the refrain would be “See…see…he’s afraid and needing to hide something and won’t come out against this lest all sorts of dirt get unsettled and he screws the pooch.” But now that he is responding to it in the strongest terms possible he and the DEMS are “Quashing Freedom of Speech?”

    Sheesh. You guys just need to give it a break.

    If there’s no wrong doing here, Simmons and the rest of the Texas sleazeballs responsible for this and Swift boats four years ago, won’t have anything to worry about will they?

    (And hell….you wanna talk about Freedom of speech, just how many of my comments are getting quashed as it were as I’m in moderation and it seems that if my opinions are too off the accepted dogma, they just never appears? Care to answer that DRJ? because if that keeps happening I’m happy to leave you folks to what’s really a phony forum, with lots of echoes…echoes…echoes….from the same half dozen people….Respond by email if you want to keep this private DRJ or I expect to see this go up. Thx.)

    Peter (e70d1c)

  9. Yes, please let’s investigate all the allegations in the ad, as well as any similar backing by Soros of MoveOn.org.

    Apogee (186a12)

  10. #6

    Juan:

    Is this to be another witchhunt with no crime, where the investigator asks questions until someone is inconsistent, and then just charge them with obstructing an investigation into a non-crime?

    Okay, if an OD-ing on irony was fatal, I’d be dead right now.

    Did you really dare to just write that??

    Just who, pray tell is running a witch hunt here??? It’s not Obama I’ll tell you that much and after the stupid UIC library phony cover up story by Kurtz (the full CAC records will be made available tomorrow) that the Right went all indignant and ape about, you worried about this request to the DOJ to look into this turning into an inadvertent cover up investigation?

    Wow. Like I said: If Irony was fatal…I’d be a goner.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  11. Typical lib — when things start going bad call in the lawyers. The ACLU must be in on this as well. There is no way they could resist getting their tentacles around something like this.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  12. Et tu, Fox News?

    JVW (d54fc4)

  13. Remember, this is the party that investigated G.H.W.Bush on the allegation that he flew to Paris on an SR-71 to meet with the Iranians after the Nov-80 election to manipulate the Hostage Crisis.
    No proof, just the “seriousness” of the allegation.
    Are there any adults in the Democrat Party?

    Another Drew (6c5558)

  14. #11, AD, it’s true, it’s true. That’s where W was while he was missing from the NG, learning to fly the Blackbird so he could give his dad a ride.

    Ropelight (4a83c9)

  15. I keep waiting for someone to say “April Fools” or gotcha, a great bad 80’s movie, BTW.

    JD (5f0e11)

  16. Think Obama’s new ad will work?

    Barack Obama: I’m Barack Obama and I approved this message.

    ANNCR: With all our problems, why is John McCain talking about the sixties, trying to link Barack Obama to radical Bill Ayers?

    McCain knows Obama denounced Ayers’ crimes, committed when Obama was just eight years old.

    Let’s talk about standing up for America today.

    John McCain wants to spend $10 Billion a month in Iraq, tax breaks for corporations that ship jobs overseas, selling out American workers.

    John McCain, just more of the same.

    FAIL!!!

    capitano (211a15)

  17. I’m wondering just why Fox news would give a rat’s ass about pressure being put on by the Obama campaign. I’d tell them to do the anatomically impossible. You may recall how up in arms the paultards were when Fox cut Luap nor out of an upcoming debate. The left is good at calling the media right wing as if we are oblivious to just how much the media is really in the tank for Obama. Which network is the most egregious in the fawning coverage of the big zero? Perhaps msnbc even though Brokaw says they have more than olberdouche and I squat to pee chrissie matthews.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  18. Peter,

    I don’t know about anyone else but I’m disturbed by the demand for a criminal investigation. Election disputes are one thing. Criminalizing speech is another.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  19. From the Politico report:

    Obama has also launched his own response ad, directly addressing Simmons’ attempt to link him to domestic terror.
    — Of course . . . OF COURSE! The original ad is illegal, so we will do a response ad to the illegal ad, which of course will have to either include clips or make direct reference to illegal content, but of course it’s okay to talk about illegal content as long as you’re making the point that it is illegal (sort of like when Huckabee showed the media the attack ad he had decided not to use against Romney), and of course the response ad will include an accusation that the attack ad is illegal, but will there be a retraction ad when it is proven that nothing illegal took place?

    The project is “a knowing and willful attempt to violate the strictures of federal election law,” Obama general counsel Bob Bauer wrote to Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Keeney last week in a letter provided to Politico. Bauer argued that by advocating Obama’s defeat, the ad should be subject to the contribution limits of federal campaign law.
    — Does it say “Vote No on Obama” in the ad? or is that just the inference? [There’s some legal obfuscation for ya.]

    Bauer’s letter called on the Justice Department to open “an investigation of the American Issues Project; its officers and directors; and its anonymous donors, whoever they may be.”
    — Uh-oh. I sure hope the American Red Cross never puts out a potentially illegal ad; someone might track me down! OTOH, how do you investigate an anonymous donor?

    “The Obama campaign plans to punish the stations that air the ad financially,” an Obama aide said, “organizing his supporters to target the stations that air it and their advertisers.”
    — Can you say “Nixon’s enemies list”?

    Obama’s campaign has written a pair of letters to station managers carrying the ads. The letter calls the ad’s attempt to link Obama to terrorism “an appalling lie, a disgraceful smear of the lowest kind on the senator’s patriotism and commitment to the rule of law.” Airing the ad “is inconsistent with your station’s obligations under Federal Communications Commission regulations,” the letter continues, saying Simmons’ group lacks formal incorporation.
    — So they are also threatening to file a complaint with the FCC in order to force stations to turn down the ad. What? Threatening to boycott their advertisers isn’t enough?

    Obama has launched a response ad, which addresses McCain directly, and will air in Ohio, Tracey said.
    “With all our problems, why is John McCain talking about the ’60s, trying to link Barack Obama to radical Bill Ayers?” says Obama’s ad. “McCain knows Obama denounced Ayers’ crimes, committed when Obama was just 8 years old.”

    — Actually mentioning Ayers’s name in their response ad is maybe the surest sign to date of their all-out desperation.

    “The fact that [Obama] is launching his own convention by defending his long association with a man who says he didn’t bomb enough U.S. targets tells us more about Barack Obama than any of tonight’s speeches will,” said McCain spokesman Brian Rogers.
    — Couldn’t have said it better. Say! Is Obama losing weight? I think so. That suit seems emptier and emptier everyday.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  20. And “fighting back” means proving an opponent wrong, Peter, not asking that they be investigated, aiming for criminal charges to be laid.

    andycanuck (10f327)

  21. #10 – Peter

    Like I said: If Irony was fatal…I’d be a goner.

    — He’s right. Oh, irony!

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  22. Peter – I suspect you are still in moderation for your multiple profanity laced tirades. Or, did you forget about those?

    I love Peter’s standards. If you are not guilty of anything, you should not be bothered with a rectal inspection by the DOJ. Funny how that flies in the face of some of their other positions …

    JD (5f0e11)

  23. I guess you can say goodbye to free speech if Obama wins.

    Evil Pundit (843b74)

  24. Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    I want just one person here to say they wouldn’t do that, because it would threaten someone’s Freedom of speech?

    Please, go ahead. Don’t all talk at once now.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  25. #22 JD

    Yes, well as usual, you only provide one slice of the story. I wasn’t the one who was harassing someone and being abusive and rude and a liar for weeks on end. But I’m not going to get back into that nonsense.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  26. The Ayers ad played on USA in SE Ohio yesterday afternoon several times. Its very effective.

    It should play everywhere. Only resolute Kool-Aid drinkers would vote for Obama after learning that Obama kicked off his political career at Ayers’s home. The ad makes Obama look terrible.

    It’s a kick ass ad. Go American Issues Project.

    SAM (c36902)

  27. Peter — comments here are not moderated. But the site does have a spam filter — and I can find no rhyme or reason why some posts get caught up there and others don’t. I rarely take time to look at them — DRJ and Patterico are much more cognizant of the problem than I am.

    But, rest assured, you are not considered a troll and no one is moderating your posts.

    WLS (26b1e5)

  28. Comment by Peter — 8/25/2008 @ 4:59 pm:

    Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    File a civil suit? Yes. File criminal charges? No way, nor would any DA or US Attorney let me do it.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  29. Peter – You went completely ballistic and said some incredibly insutling things to others here. So, if you are proud of that …

    As to your hypothetical, what exactly is BS about Baracky having a relationship with Ayers?

    JD (5f0e11)

  30. WLS,

    Peter’s comments are moderated because Patterico put him there several weeks ago along with Drumwaster. I think Drumwaster left and Peter’s comments get moderated when someone sees them. I assume Patterico will change things when he decides it’s the right time.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  31. As the Instapundit says, they said there would be efforts to quash speech after George W. Bush was elected President. They were right.

    Huh?!

    The reason why the freedom of Simmons’ anti-Obama speech is in question has more to do with McCain (and his partner in crime Russ Feingold) than Bush. My first inkling that Bush was going to fall short of conservative expectations was his refusal to veto the bill in his hope (gritting teeth) the SCOTUS would smack it down.

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  32. It’s a running Instapundit joke, LN. Reynolds’ point is that liberals claimed Bush would abrogate their civil liberties including free speech. However, most instances that really occurred resulted from liberals, not Bush.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  33. Introducing the Jeff Atkinson sandwich: A slice of SPAM on a blog roll.

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  34. I like Petey’s rantings about free speech and moderation conspiracies – sounds like a budding Truther. Hey Petey, does fire melt steel?

    “As to your hypothetical, what exactly is BS about Baracky having a relationship with Ayers?”

    It’s BS to Petey because someone actually had the gall to bring it up. The nerve of some people, stating matters of public record. How dare they?

    So how about an answer to the question, Petey?

    Dmac (874677)

  35. Peter, I don’t recall defending Republican demands for stupid investigations.

    And yeah, I think Obama intends to demand the sort of investigation I suggested. He’s at least making clear that the threat is out there. He wants to scare his critics into silence.

    You are free to disagree that this is offensive, but I note you can’t point to any fact I brought up that you think is untrue. And based alone on what I brought up, ads condemning Obama for his treatment of an utter monster like Ayers are legitimate.

    You can suggest they are not until you are blue in the face, but I suggest that you just point specifically to how I’m wrong.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  36. Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    What’s trumped up?

    Obama and Ayers are pals, and Ayers is an unrepentant terrorist who bombed the Capitol building.

    Simple as heck, and once the whole country knows this, you can kiss the Messiah goodbye.

    Personally, I love it when arrogant, incompetent jackasses bring about their own downfall.

    It’s called Schadenfreude in German.

    Tom W. (190afe)

  37. McCain should run ad after ad about how the Obama campaign tried to use the law to shut down free speech… not to prove it a lie, mind you, but to suppress it! This crap happens almost every election and it is ALWAYS the Dems that try it!

    sherlock (bf10a3)

  38. I think it only fair that the American Issues Project also detail McCain’s long and close contact with communists bent on the destruction of the United States. There are still many Americans who don’t realize that John McCain was fed and housed by commies for over five years.

    There is little difference between the communists with whom McCain had contact and Ayers and his associates. They were just as committed to violence against the United States as was Ayers and there is documentation of their application of violent means during the entire period of McCain’s very close contact with them.

    Rick Ballard (0a8990)

  39. Irrespective of whether this ad really does violate the law, this is a very bad move by Obama. First, it calls attention to the ad.

    That’s bad enough. What’s worse is that it reinforces the growing impression that Obama is a pussy. His response to criticism is “I’m gonna tell mom on you!”

    Steven Den Beste (99cfa1)

  40. Peter wrote:

    Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    I want just one person here to say they wouldn’t do that, because it would threaten someone’s Freedom of speech?

    Please, go ahead. Don’t all talk at once now.

    If it was really “trumped up BS…on the most paper thin of allegations,” sure, I would have no problem suing.

    However, if the controversy had its basis in fact, and a jury would be likely to agree that the allegations (after discovery) were indeed true, I would just make loud noises about considering filing suit, but never actually do it (see Kerry, John). If I chose to go forward knowing the truth is not on my side, I could make things exponentially worse for myself (see Clemens, Roger).

    L.N. Smithee (0931d2)

  41. Calling for state investigation of a political opponent for ad you don’t like. Incredible. But not really. As said above, leftism in a nutshell. And isn’t this part and parcel of their recent “American Accountability Project” (if I have the name right)? — trying to prempt such ads by bullying potential conservative donors with letters. Never has the left been this close to power. It obviously sees this ad, the larger focus on Ayres, as the central threat to its rise, and to the delectable prize it nears. Of course, the left has always loathed the hurly-burly of debate, the natural critical fray of democracy. It offends them; it is humiliating reminder that their ideas must be subject to vulgar scrutiny, that they do not have complete control but must compete for power based on merit, history, performance. How infuriating for them. Why can’t others see the holy and incontestible greatness of their way? Something is wrong with the rest of us. Fox News? Abomination! Talk Radio? Apostasy! Something must be done. The world must be made right!

    rrpjr (fb0748)

  42. Rick Ballard: I do hope that is satire.

    Rhoda (7d1d16)

  43. Peter seems as ignorant of the First Amendment and freedom of speech as I would expect him to be

    I missed the part where Peter explained what was false about the ads.

    Fill me in, Peter.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  44. #24 – PeterNot-A-Troll

    Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    — As I understand it (and I’m not a lawyer) the allegation is that the ad [to paraphrase] “advocates Obama’s defeat”, which I guess means they think the ad says: “Don’t Vote For Obama”. Apparently, someone is supposed to interpret that to be what “How much do your really know about Barack Obama? What does he really believe?” really means. You guys can’t be strict constructionists about anything, can you? For your next trick, parse out the various definitions “is”.

    To keep this on-track, if I was up for a publicly elected office (no comparisons to the private sector, please; let’s compare apples to apples) and a person, or a group, came along and — exercising their right to free speech — made factual statements and then asked pointed questions based on those facts . . . I would accept that as their right and would concentrate on, a) responding to such an ad with a clear statement of what those facts mean, and b) unequivocally relating my positions on any issues that are in question.

    If — IF — anything in the ad met the legal definition of slander (ex. if the ad had claimed that “Barack Obama shares Bill Ayers’s terrorist ideology”), then, and only then, I would send a cease-and-desist letter threatening a civil action. What I would not do is go crying to a federal government agency with the all-too predictable liberal call for Nanny Sam to “Do something!”

    I don’t know what you mean by: “for their own self advancement”, unless YOU are alleging some kind of backroom deal between McCain (or the GOP) and this American Issues Project. Be careful what you allege, now . . . someone might report you to the DOJ!

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  45. The fact that William Ayers was not isolated as an outcast speaks volumes about his friends.

    Roy Mustang (a7923d)

  46. So what else would you expect from Obama, in every election for which he has been elected, he has used the lawyers to disqualify his opponents.

    Expect more of the same as Obama has never actually completed a campaign without resorting to legal means to ensure election.

    LogicalUS (742bd0)

  47. Holy Jeebus. Are you guys listening to this lunacy from Kennedy.

    JD (5f0e11)

  48. Yeah. He mentioned race. What were the odds?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  49. re teddy — i heard a reference to the”wound that won’t heal.”

    Mary Jo?

    WLS (de1532)

  50. This Dem convention is so full of unintentional irony. Good Allah. This is fun.

    JD (5f0e11)

  51. Isn’t it interesting? The libs will cry “McCain crashed five planes!” (actually three, but who’s counting? certainly not the Obamatrons), failing to mention that he killed no one — Viet Cong excepted. But if someone brings up Teddy’s little spin around the lake . . . “ancient history”; “stop beating a dead horse” (so to speak).

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  52. “I do hope that is satire.”

    Well… maybe. But you can’t deny that McCain had constant contact with commies for a very long time. Nor can you assert that those commies were any better than Bill Ayers. So, both Obama and McCain have spent time with people who advocate the violent overthrow of the United States and I don’t believe that Ayers ever had a harsh word to say about the type of commies with whom McCain had contact. They might not have been the precise flavor favored by Ayers but they were certainly fellow travelers with him.

    The only difference is that Obama’s association with Ayers was wholly and completely voluntary. One might suppose that is due to some sort of shared values. If you can imagine Ayers having any values.

    Rick Ballard (0a8990)

  53. Holy jeebus. The Dems think that the number of houses is some big deal. MSNBC is an absolute Baracky fellatio festival.

    JD (5f0e11)

  54. Well, well. Here’s former GOPer Jim Leach. Let’s see if he . . . wait for it . . . wait for it. Okay, he mentioned Lincoln and Civil Rights; that doesn’t count — that’s history, not ideology. Oh, here we go – ‘opportunity for all Americans’. You will remember, Oiram, that in challenging you to keep a ‘reference tally’ I actually used that phrase as one of the indicators. Incredible.

    ‘Global warming’. *sigh*

    OMG! He just compared Obama to Eisenhower! To my favorite president . . . to Ike! Where’s my gun?! [kidding!]

    ‘transcending candidate’ — Where’s my barf bag?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  55. Icy – What were the odds?

    I think that Stashiu and Xlrq and the folks in the probability threads could figure out the odds.

    Me – 100 percent chance that it is mentioned by every speaker in Denver.

    This convention is hysterical.

    JD (5f0e11)

  56. Claire McCaskill speaking of herself in the third person. What does she think this is, the Bio page of her website?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  57. Michelle said Baracky had a weird name. Racist !!!!!!!

    JD (5f0e11)

  58. Hey you guys, DON’T VOTE FOR OBAMA. The way I hear it he’s nothing more than another crooked Chicago hack, Mayor Daley’s boy, and married to a really nasty America-hating bitch (although he, himself, has not sufficient character or intellect to like or hate anything.)

    DOJ, if anybody turns me in just email me (my email is at my profile at my site) and I will surrender myself at your offices.

    nk (3c7a86)

  59. Icy – I think you and I are the only ones truly enjoying this.

    Everytime I watch one of these vignettes at the convention, I find it more entertaining to hum the Bud Light ad “real men of genius” song in my head.

    JD (5f0e11)

  60. JD, Notice that Oiram, ‘love’, etc are nowhere to be found right now? They must be watching. Why aren’t they chiming in?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  61. Thanks, nk. Hmmm. . . . seems that Peter has disappeared as well. You think maybe they all felt the need to watch the convention at their local watering-holes?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  62. JD – How can you watch it on MSNBC? I’d be throwing bricks through the screen by now.

    Oh, wait. Here comes Michelle-O!

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  63. Impassioned public servant? Michelle?

    JD (5f0e11)

  64. I’m enjoying your repartee.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  65. Icy – Go whole hog … immerse yourself in the feelings … You get the whole effect through MSNBC.

    Change !

    As a mom. even though I have a hard time keeping fresh fruit in the house.

    JD (5f0e11)

  66. Funny name?! Racist !!!!!!!

    JD (5f0e11)

  67. Impassioned public servant? Michelle?

    Really? Did they say that?

    Pablo (99243e)

  68. How did those communities that Baracky organized turn out, Michelle?

    JD (5f0e11)

  69. 183rd reference to Dr. King.

    Yes, Pablo, in the introduction.

    JD (5f0e11)

  70. She reads a speech well.

    Poll – Who has worse veneers? Biden or Pelosi?

    JD (5f0e11)

  71. What is her career in public service that she references?

    JD (5f0e11)

  72. I could not stand the DNC coverage, and seeing that Teddy “**hic**” Kennedy was speaking just sent me off the deep end. So to find someone of higher moral character and virtue to watch, I pulled a random DVD out of the porn collection instead. Even the wife acknowledged the improvement.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  73. JD, veneers? How can you compare Biden’s hair plugs to plastic surgery that even Joan Rivers sneers at?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  74. Hope change bring people together community organizer hope hope Chicago hope I was proud when you voted for Baracky in Iowa hope change currents of something or other hope … Good Allah, people are crying.

    JD (5f0e11)

  75. Charges of apostasy will soon follow.

    desertdweller (55ef6a)

  76. The words of Mrs. Messiah:

    I hear violins. ‘Fighting for the world as it should be, instead of settling for the world as it is’. A variation on ‘America sucks but we will make it better’.

    “18 million cracks in the glass ceiling” *retch*

    There it is: “That is why I love this country.” After all of those questionable statements, she had to declare it openly. And, of course, the faithful are now completely reassured. How about the ‘undecideds’?

    ‘Barack the Uniter’

    People crying — me upchucking.

    Jeez! If I have to see Biden’s horse-teeth this much I may not make it to Thursday.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  77. Isn’t She Lovely is playing in the background. Sexist wankers.

    JD (5f0e11)

  78. 0baracky does not know the difference between Kansas City and St. Louis.

    JD (5f0e11)

  79. She touched my heart.

    JD (5f0e11)

  80. Chris Mathews is proud of this country tonight. Race reference 8934 tonite.

    JD (5f0e11)

  81. Thnx, DRJ! Trust me, I suffered for your entertainment.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  82. Good speech. Utterly forgettable. Harold Ford and Baracky do not know if he is in Kansas City or St. louis.

    JD (5f0e11)

  83. The ad seems illegal per McCain’s legislation. I’m not an election law expert, but it certainly seems in line with the Swift Boat and Moveon ads that the FCC pwned after the 2004 election cycle.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  84. you wanna talk about Freedom of speech, just how many of my comments are getting quashed as it were as I’m in moderation and it seems that if my opinions are too off the accepted dogma, they just never appears

    You have no right to free speech here, Peter. Re-read the 1st Amendment and the Incorperation clause…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  85. Patrick Kennedy just said people have to put their prejudices aside and vote for the future of the families and for Baracky.

    JD (5f0e11)

  86. “Go find a crime, dammit!”

    mojo (2303c8)

  87. Confession time: Judging her as a female person of the planet Earth, I like her. If I wasn’t married, and she wasn’t married, I would like to approach her, talk to her, even take a chance and ask her out — and be shot down in flames by her. I think she is physically beautiful and has a good, basically happy personality.

    Based on some — strike that — many of the things she has said, I can’t say that I like her brain very much. The gist of her speech was to spin the psychology of ‘perpetual victimhood under the boot of institutionalized oppression’ into ‘unrestrained highly optimistic hope for the future’. As the late Rep. Tom Lantos used to say, in his Hungarian (read: Bela Lugosi) accent: “I don’t buy it.” [sounds like “I don’t bite”]

    On the plus side, she pretty much avoided throwing the card . . . she must be saving that for the day after the election.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  88. John F. Kennedy is likely rolling over in his grave. Someone on MSNBC just said that race was not referenced by Michelle. Megan Kelly is a national treasure.

    JD (5f0e11)

  89. Wahmbulance…

    Burden of proof that ad is untrue should be on Obama.
    Cowboy tfu

    I met Harold Simmons once… I think he found me instantly forgetable.
    I’m fine with that because it looks like he’s big trouble if you get on his bad side

    SteveG (71dc6f)

  90. I think there is more substance on The Hills than in Denver.

    Olberdouche is still knobbing Kennedy.

    JD (5f0e11)

  91. Burden of proof that ad is untrue should be on Obama.

    Wrong issue, hoss. The question is whether the ad is advocating for or against a given candidate. If so, McCain’s own law prohibits it.

    The only thing reasonable people can differ on here is the remedy: should the ad be pulled, or fines levied after the fact.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  92. The fortitude and inner strength of Sen. Kennedy, the likes of which has not been seen since Sen. Kennedy did his Michael Phelps impression in Chappaquiddick.

    JD (5f0e11)

  93. That’s one of the issues, jpe. They’re claiming the other as well.

    In a letter to station managers, Obama campaign lawyer Robert Bauer wrote: “Your station is committed to operating in the public interest, an objective that cannot be satisfied by accepting for compensation material of such malicious falsity.”

    I don’t see any falsehoods in that ad.

    Pablo (99243e)

  94. jpe, you are misstating the law rather dramatically.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  95. Apparently jpe gets to define what is reasonable.

    JD (5f0e11)

  96. dishonesty seems to be ingrained in some people.

    JD (5f0e11)

  97. Good catch on the other prong of the complaint.

    I’m capturing federal election law cleanly. If the goal of the communication is to support or oppose a candidate, it’s a PAC and has all the burdens of a PAC. A (c)(4) just can’t run the kind of ad being run here.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  98. 95: You’re just being a nimrod if you don’t the goal of the ad is to oppose Obama.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  99. Oh, enlighten us on the standards used in election law, o wise one.

    JD (5f0e11)

  100. JD, are you a little slow? You can see two comments above yours the standard used for distinguishing a PAC from a (c)(4).

    jpe (bd88bc)

  101. jpe:

    2 things…

    First, I would likely suggest a slightly less agressive tone. We tend to respond better to civility.

    Second, IMPLYING and STATING are two very different things in the law you cite. Does the ad SAY “don’t vote for”?

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  102. Scott – The response is predictable.

    jpe – What about that ad is inaccurate? Why is fact like kryptonite to the Left?

    JD (5f0e11)

  103. jpe,

    Do you think this would rise to a knowing and willful violation that might trigger criminal penalties, if there are any?

    DRJ (a5243f)

  104. “How much do your really know about Barack Obama? What does he really believe?”

    — That is what the ad says. Unless “to question” and “to oppose” have been legally defined as one-and-the-same, I don’t see how the law applies.

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  105. Icy – It applies because jpe says so. Dammit, haven’t you learned anything tonite?

    Oh yeah, Baracky will end straight versus gay. Ted Kennedy told me so.

    JD (5f0e11)

  106. 101: You’re resorting to a “magic words” test that the FEC disavowed with its recent slew of enforcement actions in ’04. And, again, I don’t think any reasonable person could claim that this ad isn’t an ad opposing Barack Obama.

    Do you think it is?

    DRJ: don’t you think they knowingly and intentionally intended to oppose Obama with this ad? It certainly seems that way to me. Opposing Obama is the very core of the ad.

    I’ll note that I think the BCRA is a noxious law that violates the First Amendment, but Obama has solid legal grounds for opposing the ad. The only question, I think, is over the requested remedy (a perfectly reasonable position would be that we don’t want the FEC to get so involved that they’re issuing TROs; we want to err on the side of allowing rather than suppressing speech, etc)

    jpe (bd88bc)

  107. Let me unpack that first paragraph a bit. The FEC had historically been unwilling to go after advertisements unless they had magic words of endorsement or opposition: “Vote for X!” or “Don’t vote for X!” After the ’04 election, the FEC got considerably more aggressive and went after those groups that were clearly in favor of or opposing particular candidates but that stayed away from the magic words. (hence the huge fines against MoveOn and Swift Boat Vets).

    While I wish election laws weren’t in place to begin with, the FEC’s recent approach is clearly correct enforcement. We usually have a pretty good idea that some ads are supporting a particular candidate even if they don’t say “Vote for X.”

    jpe (bd88bc)

  108. JD – I learned that my jungle fever for M.O. is becoming unhealthy. Does that count?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  109. (and jd, I do apologize for being an ass. There was no reason for that.)

    jpe (bd88bc)

  110. There you go again, trying to define reasonable as agreeing with you. Baracky started his political career in Chicago in Bill Ayers living room. True or false? Baracky served with Bill Ayers on a foundation in Chicago. True or false?

    JD (5f0e11)

  111. Thanks. I am an ass too. I tend to not respond well when I am told that I am unreasonable because I do not agree with someone else’s interpretation. It is possible to reasonably disagree.

    JD (5f0e11)

  112. #107 – jpe

    We usually have a pretty good idea that some ads are supporting a particular candidate even if they don’t say “Vote for X.”

    — So the problem with this ad is that it clearly supports a particular candidate? Who? Bob Barr?

    Oh, and where in this story does it say that the Federal Election Commission is involved? I see a request made to the DOJ, and the implied threat of a complaint being filed with the FCC, but . . .

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  113. Why is so much credence given to speeches? Outside of politicos, will any of these speeches be remembered beyond tomorrow?

    Are the folks on MSNBC on Baracky’s payroll? Baracky does not attack? All the Republicans can do is attack?

    JD (5f0e11)

  114. Isn’t the FEC still in need of a new commissioner, since Baracky blocked a nomination ?

    Surely not, because Baracky is hopey changey and new …. post-partisan, post-racial, post-rational.

    JD (5f0e11)

  115. Hmmm. . . . I’m thinkin’ that Pastor Rick Warren must be opposed to both Obama and McCain.

    Why? Look at the facts: he asked “How much do your really know about Barack Obama? What does he really believe?” And then he did the same thing for John McCain. The entire Saddleback Forum was based on the same questions posed in this ad! Does it not count because he asked it of both candidates? Unlike a 30-second commercial, there was ample opportunity for people tuning into the forum to see one candidate but not the other. Is that fair? What if it turns out that Pastor Warren votes for Ralph Nader? Should the DOJ investigate the forum as an illegal (hours-long!) ad opposed to both of the major candidates?

    Icy Truth (b746b7)

  116. I guess the knock on Obama that he can’t take a hit is true.
    He’s such a lightweight that he calls his lawyer if someone asks who he really is and who his friends are…

    How Presidential.

    Maybe if Russia invades Georgia Obama will sue… or perhaps he’ll sue al Qaeda and get a judge to tell them to “stop it”

    SteveG (71dc6f)

  117. jpe,

    I don’t know one whit about campaign finance law but it sounds like it requires a willing violation of a known campaign finance law. If so, that’s a fairly high standard.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  118. Sending letters of intimidation to television stations is a pretty bullshit tactic, but reminiscent of what the Clintons had the Democrat leadership of the House and Senate do when they did not want ABC to air The Path to 9/11.

    Nice broadcast license, you wouldn’t want to lose it if you run that ad would you?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  119. JD wrote: Meg[y]n Kelly is a national treasure.

    She’s gotta be something like that when guys are putting possum guts in a gorilla suit and claiming to have found Bigfoot just to meet her.

    L.N. Smithee (452a68)

  120. With all of B. Hussein Obama’s ties to domestic terrorists and radical organizations, you’d think the DOJ would have had that little nihilist in their crosshairs a while ago.

    sfcmac (cea96c)

  121. I’ve updated the post to include a link to a response on behalf of the American Issues Project.

    DRJ (a5243f)

  122. Thanks for posting the response from AIP. It seems preposterous. It’s a brand new org and this ad campaign seems to be the only thing they’ve done. (a search through Guidestar shows nothing, strongly suggesting it’s a brand new org) I can’t find anything on the FEC site, contra counsel’s claim that they’re in compliance.

    From start to finish, it reeks of a fly-by-night not for profit that exists solely to violate election law.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  123. This post by Rick Hasen of Election Law Blog fame agrees that the ad is probably illegal.

    No surprise, really, but no harm in noting it.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  124. The whole Ayers non-issue is one huge collective jumping of the shark.

    Was Obama involved in 911?

    Did he have anything to do with United 93?

    Is he a member of Al Quaeda?

    Was he a member of the Weather Underground?

    Did he have anything to do with that group when it was active?

    Did he have anything to do with the group after it became inactive?

    Has he ever suggested any violence be perpetrated against anything or anyone?

    Following the demented logic of AIP does the fact that Ayers is a Professor at the University of Chicago, make everyone who works there, including conservative professors and staff, a terrorist or even a terrorist accomplice?

    Is the administration at U of Chicago, who hired him, reckless and violent and dangerous?

    The answers to all these questions is: No.

    The DOJ has legal discretion over issues of election abnormalities, right? If there’s no problem with the funding and intent and behavior of AIP, there’s nothing to worry about, but there is a problem. A BIG 2.8 million dollar problem. They’re supposedly funded by fat cat Harold Simmons and if money was funneled to him somehow through the RNC or the JM Camp or even some other party ooohh boy they’re ll be some major fireworks. Also isn’t strange that an ex-McCain staffer is in charge of AIP and was paid a $50,000 consulting fee by the campaign.

    The whole thing stinks like a dead fish. In fact, whatever micro-smidgen of justification there was for the SBVT just went out the window as well because since Simmons is involved this is obviously a tool of election manipulation that’s pulled out every 4 years now to destroy someone as I said on the most paper thin of allegations.

    Also, where is all the CAC nonsense that was supposed to nail Obama to a cross. I bet Kurtz is going over the files with a fine tooth comb and praying that there’s something otherwise he’s going to look like an even bigger dolt and blowhard then he already does. Mr. I-talk-tough-to-librarians over there.

    I also see nothing suspect about Obama holding hsi first politcal meeting at Ayers house. Ayers is obviously well connected and was Obama’s associate from the Woods fund.

    Also, for those recommending a civil suit instead of a criminal suit, I’m sure that’s in the works as well. These things tend to go together and I think civil charges follow closely on the heels of criminal charges.

    If all this wasn’t enough, what happened to McCain’s pledge to run a clean campaign? But I guess he realizes he won’t win doing that. he needs an edge. He needs to cheat to win this if he can.

    He deserves whatever is dished out in his direction. Because if anyone has a suspect figure in his past it’s John McCain in the form of mob kingpin, murdered and Hensley business partner Kemper Marley.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  125. DRJ:

    Election disputes are one thing. Criminalizing speech is another.

    DRJ if someone ran an ad saying you were the moral equivalent of an Al Queda terrorist and were involved with 911 and advocated blowing people up would that be free speech or liable? Also, the McCain camp or “AIP” are free to say anything they want. They’re also free to be caught out and exposed as manipulative slimeballs and liars who’re manipulating voters through baseless suggestions and are in fact terrorists themselves. Except they don’t use bombs to kill people and make them afraid, they use lies.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  126. Peter 10:49pm …are in fact terrorists themselves. Except they don’t use bombs to kill people and make them afraid, they use lies.

    They use lies to kill people and make them afraid?

    We should outlaw lies then!

    Right, Peter?

    Oh, you might want to watch it if that actually happens Peter, as you’ll find yourself up on charges pretty quick.

    For example, you write:
    DRJ if someone ran an ad saying you were the moral equivalent of an Al Queda terrorist

    And then, not 2 sentences later you write:
    the McCain camp or “AIP” are . . . free to be caught out and exposed as manipulative slimeballs and liars who’re manipulating voters through baseless suggestions and are in fact terrorists themselves.

    You just can’t help the projection, can you?

    Apogee (366e8b)

  127. Peter, I agree that the link to 9/11 is – at best – obscure (WU bombed the Pentagon, AQ put a plane into the Pentagon), but aside from that, is there even a iota of false information?

    Ayers was a terrorist. He remains not only unrepentant, but regrets not having done more.

    In fact…

    So, would Mr. Ayers do it all again, he is asked? ”I don’t want to discount the possibility,” he said.

    Check the date on the article…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  128. #122 – jpe

    It seems preposterous. It’s a brand new org and this ad campaign seems to be the only thing they’ve done.

    — It seems preposterous. You write something that means nothing, in a tone that makes it sound like that nothing actually means something.

    From start to finish, it reeks of a fly-by-night not for profit that exists solely to violate election law.

    — From start to finish your post reeks of unsubstantiated allegations and unproven conclusions that exist solely to discredit McCain and the GOP.

    Icy Truth (1d6b22)

  129. I wasn’t making any allegations about DRJ or trying to insult her so like, wtf is that about? Needing to change the subject? Reframe the argument as liberals are “anti-freedom” because you can’t defend the actual elements in the situation, so go ahead frame away. But this has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech and everything to do with un-American Sleazeballs sullying the election process.

    They use lies to kill people and make them afraid?

    They, the same people who put together the Swift Boat campaign, use self serving embellished lies to make people afraid of voting for Democrats and what I meant is that they “kill” in terms of wiping people out politically.

    We should outlaw lies then!

    No, we should outlaw sleazeballs who spread their wealth around to destroy the election process.

    We both know Mukasey’s DOJ will go through the motions and do absolutely nothing.

    So care to explain what Obama has to do with 911 or with United 93?

    Peter (e70d1c)

  130. 129 is directed at Apogee.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  131. #127 Scott Jacobs

    So, would Mr. Ayers do it all again, he is asked? ”I don’t want to discount the possibility,” he said.

    He also said:

    Mr. Ayers describes watching ”Underground,” Emile De Antonio’s 1976 documentary about the Weathermen. He was ”embarrassed by the arrogance, the solipsism, the absolute certainty that we and we alone knew the way,” he writes. ”The rigidity and the narcissism.”

    I’m not defending the repellent behavior of his youth, but people change. And it seems like the man is living a peaceful and productive life now and attempting to do some good.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  132. #124 – Peter

    The whole Ayers non-issue is one huge collective jumping of the shark.
    — So, if to ‘jump the shark’ is to go from being relevant to becoming irrelevant, then: a) at one time this “non-issue” was an issue; and, b) since it is now irrelevant, there should be nothing over which to get upset . . . right?

    Was Obama involved in 911? Did he have anything to do with United 93? Is he a member of Al Quaeda? Was he a member of the Weather Underground? Did he have anything to do with that group when it was active? Did he have anything to do with the group after it became inactive? Has he ever suggested any violence be perpetrated against anything or anyone?
    — It is your interpretation, your assertion that those questions are inferred in the ad. This is just what we need; tying up the courts, calling on them to determine what is stated outright versus what is ‘implied’ in the subtext.

    Following the demented logic of AIP does the fact that Ayers is a Professor at the University of Chicago, make everyone who works there, including conservative professors and staff, a terrorist or even a terrorist accomplice?
    — How many of them have served on boards with him, written a review of one of his books that was published by a major newspaper, and had a political fundraiser hosted by him in his home?

    Is the administration at U of Chicago, who hired him, reckless and violent and dangerous?
    — Let’s settle on ‘stupid’.

    The answers to all these questions is: No.
    — My answers were a little more involved. Hope you don’t mind.

    The DOJ has legal discretion over issues of election abnormalities, right?
    — Sure.

    If there’s no problem with the funding and intent and behavior of AIP, there’s nothing to worry about, but there is a problem. A BIG 2.8 million dollar problem. They’re supposedly funded by fat cat Harold Simmons and if money was funneled to him somehow through the RNC or the JM Camp or even some other party ooohh boy they’re ll be some major fireworks.
    — Oookaay then. You freely acknowledge that he’s rich, but then you suggest that he obtained the money for this ad on the sly? You’re heading into ‘throw any old shit at the wall and see what sticks’ territory.

    Also isn’t strange that an ex-McCain staffer is in charge of AIP and was paid a $50,000 consulting fee by the campaign.
    — Wait a second. Are you saying that they are ideologically ON THE SAME PAGE? Oh . . . my . . . God!!! You’re right! Shenanigans! Shenanigans!

    The whole thing stinks like a dead fish. In fact, whatever micro-smidgen of justification there was for the SBVT just went out the window as well because since Simmons is involved this is obviously a tool of election manipulation that’s pulled out every 4 years now to destroy someone as I said on the most paper thin of allegations.
    — Translation: for you, campaign finance reform didn’t go far enough.

    Also, where is all the CAC nonsense that was supposed to nail Obama to a cross. I bet Kurtz is going over the files with a fine tooth comb and praying that there’s something otherwise he’s going to look like an even bigger dolt and blowhard then he already does. Mr. I-talk-tough-to-librarians over there.
    — Patience. Timing is everything.

    I also see nothing suspect about Obama holding hsi first politcal meeting at Ayers house. Ayers is obviously well connected and was Obama’s associate from the Woods fund.
    — What do YOU mean by ‘suspect’? Do you not think that their close association in these two areas suggests some political common ground?

    Also, for those recommending a civil suit instead of a criminal suit, I’m sure that’s in the works as well. These things tend to go together and I think civil charges follow closely on the heels of criminal charges.
    — Usually, civil charges follow closely on the heels of the criminal case collapsing due to lack of merit, lack of evidence, no proof that a crime took place, etc.

    If all this wasn’t enough, what happened to McCain’s pledge to run a clean campaign? But I guess he realizes he won’t win doing that. he needs an edge. He needs to cheat to win this if he can.
    — Uh, unless you have proof, feel free to stop alleging that this ad was made at McCain’s direction.

    He deserves whatever is dished out in his direction. Because if anyone has a suspect figure in his past it’s John McCain in the form of mob kingpin, murdered and Hensley business partner Kemper Marley.
    — Well, we (including you) know one thing for sure: No matter what is dished out, McCain won’t go crying to the DOJ like a pathetic little spineless two-balled bitch.

    Icy Truth (1d6b22)

  133. No, we should outlaw sleazeballs who spread their wealth around to destroy the election process.
    Comment by Peter — 8/27/2008 @ 12:04 am

    *cough* *cough* *Soros* *cough* *cough*

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  134. Peter – I hate to go at you after your evisceration by Icy, but unfortunately, you didn’t understand. Again.

    I made no accusations regarding you insulting DRJ. You fail to see that your comment was self-contradictory and contained projection. Either that or you’re attempting to re-frame the argument.

    You attempt to reason with DRJ by questioning her reaction to someone accusing her of moral equivalency with a terrorist group, implying that it is uncalled for and specious, and then not two sentences later, accuse the McCain campaign of exactly the same thing, terrorism. But as an added laugh track, you specify that their ‘terrorism’ has nothing to do with bombs (unlike Ayers), but consists solely of statements you feel are untruthful, but are too lazy to disprove. Your writing is such that it really needs no rebuttal. It is self-rebutting.

    You write:
    we should outlaw sleazeballs who spread their wealth around to destroy the election process.
    I agree with you, Soros should be outlawed.

    Then on to:
    We both know Mukasey’s DOJ will go through the motions and do absolutely nothing. Ding! First conspiracy by Peter on 8/27!

    And finally:
    So care to explain what Obama has to do with 911 or with United 93?
    Why don’t you explain that, since you’re the only one making the claims? It’s called a straw man argument – look it up.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  135. In #24, Peter wrote: Okay. I want one person here, lawyer to otherwise to step up and tell me that if you were up for a job, and someone created a trumped up BS controversy about you on the most paper thin of allegations, simply to destroy you and for their own gain, that you, knowing you could prove what they were saying to be malicious in intent and for their own self advancement, wouldn’t sue their ass off?

    Despite my confusion as to why only the process of going through a lawsuit would provide the opportunity to prove self-serving malicious intent, I took up Peter’s challenge and responded (in #44):

    – As I understand it (and I’m not a lawyer) the allegation is that the ad [to paraphrase] “advocates Obama’s defeat”, which I guess means they think the ad says: “Don’t Vote For Obama”. Apparently, someone is supposed to interpret that to be what “How much do your really know about Barack Obama? What does he really believe?” really means. You guys can’t be strict constructionists about anything, can you? For your next trick, parse out the various definitions “is”.

    To keep this on-track, if I was up for a publicly elected office (no comparisons to the private sector, please; let’s compare apples to apples) and a person, or a group, came along and — exercising their right to free speech — made factual statements and then asked pointed questions based on those facts . . . I would accept that as their right and would concentrate on, a) responding to such an ad with a clear statement of what those facts mean, and b) unequivocally relating my positions on any issues that are in question.

    If — IF — anything in the ad met the legal definition of slander (ex. if the ad had claimed that “Barack Obama shares Bill Ayers’s terrorist ideology”), then, and only then, I would send a cease-and-desist letter threatening a civil action. What I would not do is go crying to a federal government agency with the all-too predictable liberal call for Nanny Sam to “Do something!”

    I don’t know what you mean by: “for their own self advancement”, unless YOU are alleging some kind of backroom deal between McCain (or the GOP) and this American Issues Project. Be careful what you allege, now . . . someone might report you to the DOJ!

    — When you issue a challenge, and someone accepts it – and responds, it then becomes your turn to counter what was directed at you. When your response is silence, or in your case – to keep ranting as if no one had challenged you, as you did in #124 (to which I also responded), it makes you look like the kid who tries to act tough by saying “I dare you to step over this line,” and – when the person challenged does so – then takes a few steps back and repeats the heartless challenge.

    Icy Truth (242ec7)

  136. Libel (print) and slander (spoken) are what they are. I see no reason for politics to be immune.

    IE: If Obama was to put out an ad saying that McCain cooperated with the N. Vietnamese in making anti-American propaganda films, all the McCain campaign could do is yelp like hit dogs, because the films are in existance.

    Bobracer (1b5ae9)

  137. Bobracer is a douchenozzle.

    JD (5f0e11)

  138. Comment by Peter — 8/27/2008 @ 12:46 am:

    I’m not defending the repellent behavior of his youth, but people change. And it seems like the man is living a peaceful and productive life now and attempting to do some good.

    Here’s another view on Ayers and Dorhn. Like you I’m grateful they aren’t currently building and planting nail bombs to kill Americans, but there’s still their refusal to express remorse and accept punishment for earlier actions.

    DRJ (7568a2)

  139. #136 – Bobracer

    If Obama was to put out an ad saying that McCain cooperated with the N. Vietnamese in making anti-American propaganda films, all the McCain campaign could do is yelp like hit dogs

    — No, dishrag. If the ad said that McCain voluntarily cooperated with the Viet Cong, as opposed to doing so under duress and pain of torture, then he would have just cause to sue. Luckily for us, this is all hypothetical. Obama is not going to do that, as he knows what the reaction of the average American voter would be.

    Icy Truth (a1e931)

  140. #128

    Icy that call and response theing you use only works with Moonbats. When you do it to people wh make perfect sense, it makes you sound like the moron.

    jpe is entirely on the money when he writes:

    It seems preposterous. It’s a brand new org and this ad campaign seems to be the only thing they’ve done.

    and

    From start to finish, it reeks of a fly-by-night not for profit that exists solely to violate election law.

    It is preposterous and the most cynical gaming of the election laws possible to establish a BS front or shell oragization to pull this sort of crap. Why not establish a proper political comittee or go through an already establlished Republican political committee? Well, because this whole stunt is weak and slimy as hell and they need to put as many layers of deniability between it and the McCain Camp and RNC as possible, but eberyone sees right through this. We all know who’s responsible. The McCain campaign even defended the alligations of the ad, when they should’ve lambasted it as unacceptable and dirty.

    Problem is even with Mukasey out of the DOJ soon. It’s still not going to be looked until late 2009, much too late to do anything about it.

    BTW, I notice no one wants to comment on McCAin’s connection, not only as an accomplice on anti-american propaganda films made with the north vietnamese communists and if that wasn’t enough to the mega $$$$ he got funneled to him form mobster and murderer of reporter Don Bolles: Kemper Marley, SR. That’s okay, you’ll be hearing quite a lot about him soon enough:

    http://www.americanmafia.com/Feature_Articles_219.html

    Peter (b48779)

  141. #132 Icy Booth

    – So, if to ‘jump the shark’ is to go from being relevant to becoming irrelevant, then: a) at one time this “non-issue” was an issue; and, b) since it is now irrelevant, there should be nothing over which to get upset . . . right?

    Wrong. This issue wasn’t never relevant. They’ve jumped the shark on being anywhere within the realm of credibility. This AIP stunt (and god, I even hate using the disposable title AIP when we all know it’s the usual Texas thugs and overgrown HS bullies/jocks and fratboys pulling this shit that did the Swift boating four years ago.)

    If — IF — anything in the ad met the legal definition of slander (ex. if the ad had claimed that “Barack Obama shares Bill Ayers’s terrorist ideology”), then, and only then, I would send a cease-and-desist letter threatening a civil action. What I would not do is go crying to a federal government agency with the all-too predictable liberal call for Nanny Sam to “Do something!”

    And if they ignored your cease and desist letter? You’re agreeing then that you would have to follow up with some sort of legal action. And depending on who had jurisdiction over that area you would have to pursue it with them. In this case it’s the DOJ. So you prove my point: Anyone one of you, especially the attorney’s here would sue like crawzy. hell, I know attorney’s who sue each other just for the hell of it and for things far les important.

    – It is your interpretation, your assertion that those questions are inferred in the ad. This is just what we need; tying up the courts, calling on them to determine what is stated outright versus what is ‘implied’ in the subtext.

    Oh please, I would hope any jury would crucify the defendant of an attorney who insulted their intelligence with such a load of tripe. The implication is clear. It’s irresponsible and defamitory and repulsive beyond belief.

    I don’t know what you mean by: “for their own self advancement”, unless YOU are alleging some kind of backroom deal between McCain (or the GOP) and this American Issues Project. Be careful what you allege, now . . . someone might report you to the DOJ!

    That’s exactly what I’m saying. It’s what everyone’s saying. The GOP aren’t hiding this from anyone and are going to pay the price for this sort of sleaze not with the DOJ. Because they had no issues to run on, no ideas, no honor, no compassion, no vision, no nothing but the same McBush policies and negative BS. On election day, when Obama becomes the 44th president of the United States the AIP/SBVT/Delay/Abramoff/The TExas Billionaires in other words: THE GOP is going to get quite a lovely Cease and Desist letter. It’s going to come form teh American people and it’s going to say F— Y– losers get out of the executive branch and out of the legistlative branc, and soon the Judicail branch, [ack up your lobbyists and be gone.

    That’s my idea of a C & D letter.

    Peter (b48779)

  142. – How many of them have served on boards with him, written a review of one of his books that was published by a major newspaper, and had a political fundraiser hosted by him in his home?

    He’s a law abiding citizen and what’s done is done. He even says the WU were a bunch of rigid narcissists and as long as he doesn’t do anything he’s allowed to say anything he wants. That’s freedom of speech.

    Just because he had a political dinner for Obama doesn’t mean anything at all. Obama has nothing to do with violence of any sort and does not condone it. It’s good to forgive people. Don’t Christians have some teaching about that? That people can redeem themselves and to forgive is divine and all that? How many of these fat cat Texas Billionaires are born again evangelicals? But where is their Christian compassion and dedication to the truth and to goodness?

    Couldn’t be they’re entirely corrupt hypocrites could it?

    Peter (b48779)

  143. FWIW: Fox reversed itself and decided to air the ad.

    Andy B (ebd07f)

  144. – When you issue a challenge, and someone accepts it – and responds, it then becomes your turn to counter what was directed at you. When your response is silence, or in your case – to keep ranting as if no one had challenged you, as you did in #124 (to which I also responded), it makes you look like the kid who tries to act tough …blah blah…blah…

    he look, my comments have to go through a moderation phase and checked for properness, so I don’t really have the time or desire to comment on Patterico as much as I used to, especially when so many of my comments have disappeared for completely mysterious reasons no one here has yet to explain, making me think that perhaps the commitment to this being a fair forum for political thoughts from all parts of the spectrum might not be as strong as we would be led to believe.

    As for accepting my challenge, kudos to you. But the bottom line is that you would respond to liable or slander through legal apparatus. ie, a C& D letter. And if that was challenged there would only be one acceptable place to go with you grievance. Or are you suggesting taking the law into your own hands?

    Peter (b48779)

  145. #137

    Bobracer is a douchenozzle.

    Comment by JD — 8/27/2008 @ 9:46 am

    Hey DRJ, Why is this sort of behavior okay? Seems to me Bob racer made an entirely reasonable point and instead of JD presneting his own ideas he calles him a douchenozzle.

    LOL. I mean it’s funny, but retarded no?

    Anyhow, these comments won’t appear until who knows when so I’m outta here.

    Peter (b48779)

  146. Peter and Others – Why is Team Obama using an Action E-Mail to supress and harass the appearance of Stanley Kurtz, the person reviewing the Chicago Annenberg Challenge files at UIC, on WGN radio tonight? Why doesn’t Obama just discuss the actually relationship instead of resorting to all this typical Chicago thuggery? What is he afraid of or hiding?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  147. What is he afraid of or hiding?

    Obviously nothing. The Obama campaign released the following statement after Kurtz’s big to do and getting all up into the grill of a bunch of librarians at UIC like the big bad fighter of truth and justice that he is:

    The senator does not have control over these records or the ability to release them, […] “we are pleased the university is pursuing an agreement that would make these records publicly available.”

    And they were as promised, on Tuesday making Kurtz look like an even bigger blowhard then he already does.

    I didn’t hear the program, but there was no suppression, nor was there any harassment as you put it. The email asked Obama supporters to call in and question Kurtz on his findings.

    Obviously he hasn’t found anything explosive, other than the old saw he’s been working like an over sexed chihuahua humping Obama’s leg about all this dastardly guilt by association.

    And there’s nothing wrong about the Obama campaign sending out an action email. It’s called fighting for what you believe in and calling liars out on their sleazy schemes.

    Sources:

    http://www.swamppolitics.com/news/politics/blog/2008/08/barack_obama_records_sealed_at.html?rfdid=4855739

    http://www.swamppolitics.com/news/politics/blog/2008/08/obama_campaign_confronts_wgn_r.html

    And strangely the Kurtz “cover up” piece is no longer up:

    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=MTgwZTVmN2QyNzk2MmUxMzA5OTg0ODZlM2Y2OGI0NDM=

    Peter (e70d1c)

  148. Peter – To send out an e-mail in advance of a radio show asassinating the character of the guest before he even says anything and not even addressing anything substantive relating to the subject is thuggery in my book.

    Date: Wed, Aug 27, 2008
    Subject: Chicago: CALL TONIGHT to fight the latest smear

    [Name] —

    In the next few hours, we have a crucial opportunity to fight one of
    the most cynical and offensive smears ever launched against Barack.

    Tonight, WGN radio is giving right-wing hatchet man Stanley Kurtz a
    forum to air his baseless, fear-mongering terrorist smears. He’s
    currently scheduled to spend a solid two-hour block from 9:00 to 11:00
    p.m. pushing lies, distortions, and manipulations about Barack and
    University of Illinois professor William Ayers.

    Tell WGN that by providing Kurtz with airtime, they are legitimizing
    baseless attacks from a smear-merchant and lowering the standards of
    political discourse.

    Call into the “Extension 720″ show with Milt Rosenberg at (312) 591-7200

    (Show airs from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. tonight)

    Then report back on your call at http://my.barackobama.com/WGNstandards

    Kurtz has been using his absurd TV appearances in an awkward and
    dishonest attempt to play the terrorism card. His current ploy is to
    embellish the relationship between Barack and Ayers.

    Just last night on Fox News, Kurtz drastically exaggerated Barack’s
    connection with Ayers by claiming Ayers had recruited Barack to the
    board of the Annenberg Challenge. That is completely false and has
    been disproved in numerous press accounts.

    It is absolutely unacceptable that WGN would give a slimy character
    assassin like Kurtz time for his divisive, destructive ranting on our
    public airwaves. At the very least, they should offer sane, honest
    rebuttal to every one of Kurtz’s lies.

    Kurtz is scheduled to appear from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. in the Chicago market.

    Calling will only take a minute, and it will make a huge difference if
    we nip this smear in the bud. Confront Kurtz tonight before this goes
    any further:

    http://my.barackobama.com/WGNstandards

    Please forward this email to everyone you know who can make a call tonight.

    Keep fighting the good fight,

    Obama Action Wire

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  149. daleyrocks – All Peter knows how to do is character assassination. Read what he writes. If he agrees with you, he won’t be able to comment anymore.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  150. Yeah attack me Apogee. That’s effective.

    I eagerly await the fruits of Kurtz’s investigative brilliance.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  151. From Barack Obama’s Website:

    The Facts on Barack and William Ayers:

    * William Ayers was involved with the Weather Underground when Barack Obama was eight years old, and Barack has roundly condemned their actions.
    * Last night on Fox News, Kurtz tried to radicalize an education reform program in Chicago called the Annenberg Challenge. The Challenge was funded by Republican Walter Annenberg, introduced by Mayor Daley and Republican Governor Jim Edgar, and one of its initiatives was even praised by John McCain.
    * Kurtz claimed on Fox News that William Ayers recruited Obama to the Annenberg Challenge — a flat out lie. Ayers did not serve on the board of the Challenge, and he had nothing to do with Barack’s recruitment.

    Tips for making your call:

    * Be honest, but be civil.
    * Be persistent. It may take a few attempts to get through to the show. Just keep trying. Your call is important.
    * Use the talking points above to help you speak confidently and concisely.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  152. Peter –

    When you do it to people wh make perfect sense, it makes you sound like the moron.
    — A pedantic personal attack in the first line. Really, must you?

    It is preposterous and the most cynical gaming of the election laws possible to establish a BS front or shell oragization to pull this sort of crap.
    — So you say . . . but is it illegal?

    Why not establish a proper political comittee or go through an already establlished Republican political committee?
    — Why not go from railing against the law into taking proper action to change the law?

    Well, because this whole stunt is weak and slimy as hell and they need to put as many layers of deniability between it and the McCain Camp and RNC as possible, but eberyone sees right through this. We all know who’s responsible. The McCain campaign even defended the alligations of the ad, when they should’ve lambasted it as unacceptable and dirty.
    — Preach on, Brother Beavis! Oh, and feel free to include more substantive facts than “we all know”.

    Problem is even with Mukasey out of the DOJ soon. It’s still not going to be looked until late 2009, much too late to do anything about it.
    — They could always petition a federal judge for an injunction, and if necessary appeal it to the 9th Circuit Court. They might find some sympathy there.

    BTW, I notice no one wants to comment on McCAin’s connection, not only as an accomplice on anti-american propaganda films made with the north vietnamese communists
    — That’s right. He was a regular Hanoi Jane. The daily torture and the gun aimed at his head had nothing to do with it.

    and if that wasn’t enough to the mega $$$$ he got funneled to him form mobster and murderer of reporter Don Bolles: Kemper Marley, SR. That’s okay, you’ll be hearing quite a lot about him soon enough
    — From you apparently. You seem so well-versed in my state’s history . . . and on how six degrees of separation connects McCain to all of its unsavory moments.

    This issue wasn’t never relevant.
    — In that case, I won’t give none comment.

    we all know it’s the usual Texas thugs and overgrown HS bullies/jocks and fratboys pulling this shit
    — Another thing “we all know”. Maybe what we all see is some past animosities rising to the surface.

    You’re agreeing then that you would have to follow up with some sort of legal action. And depending on who had jurisdiction over that area you would have to pursue it with them. In this case it’s the DOJ. So you prove my point
    — Negative. I specifically wrote “civil action”, as in ‘civil court'; no request for a criminal investigation, no filing of federal criminal charges.

    The implication is clear. It’s irresponsible and defamitory and repulsive beyond belief.
    — In your opinion. Someone who is nonpartisan, who listens to the question posed by the ad: “What does he really believe?” might, just might, not have as intense of a reaction as you.

    That’s exactly what I’m saying. It’s what everyone’s saying.
    — Cool! A variation on ‘we all know’ … ‘everyone’s saying it’.

    He’s a law abiding citizen
    — Now . . . as far as we know.

    and what’s done is done.
    — But never properly paid for.

    He even says the WU were a bunch of rigid narcissists
    — Not only has he changed, he was better than the rest of them to begin with. Can’t imagine why libs get accused of writing revisionist history.

    and as long as he doesn’t do anything he’s allowed to say anything he wants. That’s freedom of speech.
    — Darn tootin’! And even more important (no, really!) is the fact that NO ONE has questioned or threatened to suppress the free speech rights of Bill Ayers. It was when he chose to have explosive devices do his talking for him that there was a problem.

    Just because he had a political dinner for Obama doesn’t mean anything at all.
    — Therefore, it is possible that they don’t share any political ideology? The fact that Ayers has identified himself as a Marxist, and the fact (by some strange coincidence) that Obama has been rated – by a nonpartisan organization – the most liberal member of the Senate, might explain why Ayers hosted a FUNDRAISING dinner for Obama in his home.

    Obama has nothing to do with violence of any sort and does not condone it.
    — Who said that he does? Not the ad!

    It’s good to forgive people. Don’t Christians have some teaching about that? That people can redeem themselves and to forgive is divine and all that?
    — 1) Forgive but never forget. 2) An essential part of redemption is a sincere display of remorse; Ayers is about to celebrate his 40th anniversary of NOT taking this crucial step.

    How many of these fat cat Texas Billionaires are born again evangelicals?
    — Who knows? Who cares?

    But where is their Christian compassion and dedication to the truth and to goodness?
    — I thought the ad was asking questions to try and get to the truth. Truth is good; at least, that’s what I C.

    Icy Truth (64f9d0)

  153. Editors at the NRO publish op ed to buttress the “cover up” allegations of a librarian threatening moonbat:

    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=MmUwOTllNmMzZDNlMTljMGFmY2JkZTllYmQyOTY0ODY=&w=MQ==

    How convenient of them to gloss over the hysterical partisanship that has so far elicited nothing like a cover up, although they call it a cover up, and nothing like thuggery, although they have to call it thuggery when people call them out on it forcefully and and in a civil manner.

    Anyhow, I’m still waiting for they bombshell that Kurtz has been alluding to all this time. Hey Kurtz, maybe some of the librarians at UIC are Maoists, you should go down there with a video crew and act all indignant until you make one of them cry and admit that they “libruls”. You know you want to.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  154. #152

    Like I said Icy, I liked this technique once but it really requires the all out bug eyed moonbat stridency to work right. Otherwise, well you know….

    Peter (e70d1c)


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