Patterico's Pontifications

9/22/2008

The Cover-Up Begins

Filed under: 2008 Election,General — Patterico @ 6:57 am

Last night I posted about the Jawa Report’s documentation of possible ties between Obama chief media strategist David Axelrod and an Astroturfing smear campaign against Sarah Palin. Rusty shows that a smear video appears to have been uploaded by one Ethan Winner of the PR firm Winner & Associates. Winner and his family are big-time Democrats and Obama contributors. His 27 Facebook contacts include a senior Obama advisor. The seemingly amateur video, which has no disclosure saying it is from the Obama camp, appears to use the same voice-over artist who has appeared in Axelrod’s ads for Obama. Read Rusty’s post for all the connections.

Shortly after Rusty’s post appeared, the video and related YouTube videos started coming down. Winner’s YouTube profile, that of his father, and several others were closed. This began happening within an hour of the posting of Rusty’s post. Michelle Malkin has the entertaining details, complete with screenshots.

In the criminal law business, we call evidence like that “consciousness of guilt.”

There needs to be follow-up to this story. The connection to the Winners and their PR firm is solid. The evidence tying in Axelrod and Obama is circumstantial but suggestive. The lightning-quick cover-up goes a long way towards convincing me. Now the baton needs to be passed to a media organization that can demand answers from the parties involved, who are unlikely to respond to a bunch of bloggers.

Bueller? Bueller?

UPDATE: Ace entertainingly explains why the cover-up seems to tie the smear to Obama.

95 Responses to “The Cover-Up Begins”

  1. The Washington Post will be right on this as soon as they get done writing front page stories on the “First Dudes” infamous snowmobile race cheating scandal.

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  2. Yeah don’t look for any hint of this in the press.

    gabriel (6d7447)

  3. The Deciders have Spoken.

    Obama is to be anointed without further delay.

    Techie (6b7b9b)

  4. Hey, the “I’m Barack Obama and I approve of this ad.” part just failed to make Winner’s professional cut, that’s all, or else the dog ate it.

    Move along, MSM, nothing to report here, especially not when Palin has obviously been taken Slave by the Patriarchy, and Barak Obama must save her!

    J. Peden (f95a7b)

  5. Fox News is the only news organization I can imagine going after this. The rest of the news media has their hands full circling the wagons around Obama and sending out war parties to try to claim Palin’s scalp.

    Randy R (c6f42e)

  6. Why should the media handle this? Isn’t this more of an FEC issue?

    great unknown (b751d2)

  7. J. Peden, the dog didn’t eat it; Obambi’s teleprompter was on the fritz and they had to give up after several takes.

    Dave (037445)

  8. I think that was what I was trying to say last night…

    Joe Marier (d47254)

  9. well Joe, that didn’t exactly come across. What I thought you were saying was ‘Move along’ ‘big deal’ ‘you got nothin”

    I’m seeing a lot of that from first time commenters on a lot of websites. Pessimism just springs eternal! Sadly, one huge effect of Obama’s disgusting campaign is that it’s hard to trust anonymous people parroting what is probably the Obama campaign line on this: ‘Move along’ ‘big deal’ ‘you got nothin”

    Don’t take it personally: blame Axelrod.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  10. Isn’t this more of an FEC issue?

    Not on You Tube.

    Pablo (99243e)

  11. Hedging the meanings of this post on “His 27 Facebook contacts include a senior Obama advisor.” is a smear campaign in of itself.

    Once again…… too funny.

    Oiram (983921)

  12. Pablo, actually there still is an FEC issue in my opinion. These ads arguably do not have to have the same ‘signature’ ending TV ads do (though many think youtube ads are different from banner ads and should have that stuff), but anyone would have to admit that making an ad like this costs money and is an in-kind contribution to Obama’s campaign. They people posting it make explicit electioneering comments in the comment section of this video, and it’s clearly part of the entire message that because Palin is soooo evillll (watch the ad… it’s simply disgusting) that we should all vote for Obama.

    If the 527, individual, or whoever did not report this contribution, that’s a problem. If the Obama campaign made this surreptitiously, that’s even worse. All we know at this point is that someone broke the law to help Obama. We don’t know who, and the FEC is unlikely to do much since Congress has stalled FEC appointments to the point that the FEC lacks a quorum (Thanks Sen. Reid!).

    You’re right, of course, that this isn’t the same as a TV ad. But it should be. I hope this gets some regulations changed.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  13. You’re “cover up” doesn’t amount to a hill of beans. How about this cover up that has taken money straight from your and my pockets?

    But no, it’s much more important to accuse the Obama campaign to have some sort of obscure connection to and alleged smear. (something the GOP has run rampant doing the past 8 years)

    “Senator John McCain’s campaign manager was paid more than $30,000 a month for five years as president of an advocacy group set up by the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to defend them against stricter regulations, current and former officials say….

    Incensed by the advertisements, several current and former executives of the companies came forward to discuss the role that Rick Davis, Mr. McCain’s campaign manager and longtime adviser, played in helping Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac beat back regulatory challenges when he served as president of their advocacy group, the Homeownership Alliance, formed in the summer of 2000. Some who came forward were Democrats, but Republicans, speaking on the condition of anonymity, confirmed their descriptions.”

    jharp (f4bed7)

  14. harpy will not be deterred from his narrative.

    JD (41e64f)

  15. Does this mean we won’t have the Swift Boats to kick around anymore?

    i b squidly (94e4c9)

  16. jharp, did you read the script I laid out for Obama sychophants above? I’m flattered!

    Of course, is “someone” made a professional youtube ad about how Obama is definitely a closet muslim and a traitor, and the voice talent was the same woman who voices Mccain ads, you would tell DailyKOS to move along, right?

    You don’t think it’s OK to professionally smear Palin and her family with lies just because you disagree with her politically, do you? Why that would be extremely bigoted, wouldn’t it?

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  17. some sort of obscure connection to and alleged smear

    Do you realize how pitiful this sounds ? It makes me wonder if you are a living person or an automated Obama bot.

    Paying lobbyists is legal. Regrettable, but legal. This may not be but who cares because Obama’s friends have been doing illegal things for years.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  18. If we look to jharp and others on the Left, on how to treat lobbyists who work for clients/causes that we disagree with, can we not also apply the same standard to attorney’s who represent mass murderers? Or, OJ?

    Let’s take them out to the soccer field and stone them.

    Another Drew (a81639)

  19. jharp’s going to have to screech louder. At some point the public is going to become aware of the fact that Republicans tried to regulate Fannie Mac while Democrats were accepting contributions from the senior leadership and blocking regulation. What good fortune for McCain: the one thing Republicans wanted to regulate, and Dems did not, is the part of the economy that blew up.

    Bel Aire (2fd7f7)

  20. harpy will not be deterred from his narrative.

    harpy will not be deterred from his complaints.

    must suck to be him.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  21. harpy – How do you feel about those Conseco boys in your back yard?

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  22. Backtracked/linked at Stubborn Facts. Keep on rockin’!

    Tully (c2f070)

  23. Hey jharp…Sure you want to go there? Let’s DO IT!!

    From noquarter:

    “Let’s start with the numbers. Why is a first term Senator pulling down almost $300,000 a year from Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, Countrywide Financial, and Washington Mutual? He has not even completed his fourth year in the Senate and received a total of $1,093,329.00 from these eight companies and their employees. (all data from OpenSecrets.org). John McCain’s numbers, according to OpenSecrets.org for the period 1990-2008 (i.e., 18 years worth of data) only collected $549,584.00. In other words, Barack is receiving $273,582.25 (and 2008 is not over) per year while McCain raised a paltry $30,532.44.

    Want another shocker? Barack Obama has received more from one source–Goldman Sachs $542,252.00–than McCain has from all of the companies combined. Who the hell is more beholden to lobbyists? And why does a junior Senator from Illinois rate this kind of dough?”

    So Obama has been enriching himself off of these very Wall Street firms he nows decries…in addition to pocketing money from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, Bear Sterns and Lehman Brothers,Countrywide,and WAMU to the tune of $1,093,329.00 from these eight companies!!

    GAME ON!

    penelopesire (f715f2)

  24. Funny how an economic crisis instead of bringing us together just serves as a political springboard to launch attacks on eachother. Sad thing is the left side of the political spectrum has long ago jumped the shark with BDS that they are not only willing to lose a war but now seem content to cheerlead us into a depression.

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  25. These ads arguably do not have to have the same ’signature’ ending TV ads do (though many think youtube ads are different from banner ads and should have that stuff), but anyone would have to admit that making an ad like this costs money and is an in-kind contribution to Obama’s campaign.

    Juan, I’d be very careful with that line of reasoning. First, ads like that cost very little, nothing if the labor is free and you already own the editing tools. Second, the idea that anyone who puts up a political video on You Tube is a little frightening. The distinction between You Tube and other ads is that You Tube is free, while other ads need to be paid for and those paying need to identify themselves.

    Pablo (99243e)

  26. Comment by penelopesire — 9/22/2008 @ 9:20 am

    Those are devestating numbers!
    How does a very junior Senator attract that kind of money,
    especially not being a member of the Appropriations Cmte?
    These numbers make the FM2 contributions seem like penny-ante crap.

    Just what did these people think they were buying?
    If it was just “access”, they wouldn’t have had to spend so much.
    So, what was it?

    Another Drew (a81639)

  27. How does a very junior Senator attract that kind of money,
    especially not being a member of the Appropriations Cmte?

    *cough*Chicago*coughcough*

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  28. harpy – How do you feel about those Conseco boys in your back yard?

    Comment by daleyrocks — 9/22/2008 @ 9:18 am

    I think they are crooks. Just like the rest of them.

    jharp (f4bed7)

  29. jharp – Who gives a shit about Rick Davis when according to YOU, Phil Gramm is responsible for this mess.

    By the way, that is another of your many unsupported assertions on this blog. You have never connected the dots on why Phil Gramm caused this mortgage mess. Are tou now switching the narrative?

    You also never documented how Canadian and British citizens receive the same quality healthcare as Americans at half the cost. Support your statement harpie!

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  30. Gee, I wonder why harpy didn’t link the piece he’s quoting. Could it be this?

    “The value that he brought to the relationship was the closeness to Senator McCain and the possibility that Senator McCain was going to run for president again,” said Robert McCarson, a former spokesman for Fannie Mae, who said that while he worked there from 2000 to 2002, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac together paid Mr. Davis’s firm $35,000 a month. Mr. Davis “didn’t really do anything,” Mr. McCarson, a Democrat, said.

    Or maybe it’s this.

    In an interview Sunday night with CNBC and The New York Times, Mr. McCain noted that Mr. Davis was no longer working on behalf of the mortgage giants. He said Mr. Davis “has had nothing to do with it since, and I’ll be glad to have his record examined by anybody who wants to look at it.”

    Asked about the reports of Mr. Davis’s role, a spokesman for Mr. McCain said that during the time when Mr. Davis ran the Homeownership Alliance, the senator had backed legislation to increase oversight of the mortgage companies’ accounting and executive compensation. The legislation, however, did not seek to change their anomalous structure as private companies with federal support.

    Pablo (99243e)

  31. Comment by Another Drew — 9/22/2008 @ 9:33 am

    “Just what did these people think they were buying?”

    Good Question. My guess is they want the Wall Street/Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac racket to continue after the bailout and who better to see that it is done than Obama!

    penelopesire (f715f2)

  32. In the criminal law business, we call evidence like that “consciousness of guilt.”

    This latest trick is well beyond anything _____ ever did. Take your pick. Don’t you Obama supporters ever complain about another politician again. Your victim card has been officially yanked.

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  33. Pat

    You have mail…voice over artist may have been found

    daytrader (ea6549)

  34. Note that this latest story is a harbinger of an Obama presidency. As Spike Lee would say, Get used to it.

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  35. Someone up thread said people are being too pessimistic now. I disagree. The MSM will not investigate this until they have to and even then their coverage will be slanted. They have been not just biased this election but they have been advocating. They did not report on Rev. Wright until his videos went viral on youtube. Then every speech Obama came out with radically different explanations was hailed as the greatest thing since Lincoln. They have not reported on Ayers. They have done only cursory reporting of Rezko. They meanwhile have sent a freakin SWAT team to Wazilla and have been printing out and out lies in their papers with little or no retractions. I do not think it is a stretch at all to figure they will ignore this totally.

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  36. Daytrader,
    Her name is out there. Whether she wants to discuss a steady client is going to be interesting.

    Vermont Neighbor (a066ed)

  37. Pablo, maybe you’re right, but I seriously doubt it.

    This ad was not free to produce or coordinate. It probably cost more than my car (which maybe isn’t the best example if I look at my car). Nothing like this is free. Even if the workers volunteered their time, the caselaw is voluminous that this is an in0kind contribution. If this contribution was from the Winner company, that is a forbidden contribution that Obama probably would have to pay for and show on their September expense report. If from the individuals (all volunteering in your hypo), then every single one of them, from the voice actor to the script writer to the idiots who posted this trash, have to be named as contributors.

    Just because it’s free to put ads on youtube doesn’t mean they were free. You are right that this is a lot different from TV ads (I’m only arguing that the law should change on this point). But it’s still an in-kind contribution. Have you read the lengthy report on Rusty’s site? It’s clear these ads were made on company time, posted on company time, and promoted on company time, by several company employees with links to Axelrod or other Obama campaign leaders. It’s clear, in my view, that some organization paid Winner money to do this.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  38. Ok … now how do we go about getting this covered by the media … by Drudge … by Rush … by The Weekly Standard … by National Review?

    Anyone? Anyone?

    Is there even a hope in hell that this story will go anywhere beyond the conservative blogosphere? We know it’s an important one, but we also know the MSM will not cover it unless dragged into it kicking and screaming, and unless we can get some other media outlets like NRO and WS, Rush and Hannity, Drudge, et al., then this story will be confined to the conservative blogosphere and nothing will be done.

    thirteen28 (fb294d)

  39. and by this, I mean to use professional Obama ad makers to make a disgusting and vile piece of smear about a person America was just learning about.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  40. Comment by Scott Jacobs — 9/22/2008 @ 9:40 am

    I know, Scott.
    Just another rhetorical question.

    Another Drew (a81639)

  41. WaPo is accusing Palin of hiding in plain sight:

    She has answered only a handful of questions from voters and reporters. She sat down for a lengthy discussion with one nonpartisan interviewer, ABC’s Charles Gibson, and granted another interview to conservative Sean Hannity of Fox News . . .

    Maybe the Winners should come out of hiding and do an interview with the “nonpartisan” Mr. Gibson? I’m sure if he’s that nonpartisan, he’ll probe this matter deeply, and ask why Axelrod & Co. are finaning a “holy war” against Sarah.

    The Raving Atheist (4f6d4a)

  42. This ad was not free to produce or coordinate. It probably cost more than my car (which maybe isn’t the best example if I look at my car).

    No, this is not an expensive ad. This entire thing could be done on one’s laptop, including recording the voiceover. See these You Tube ads. Bryan Preston cobbled all of those together and did the voiceovers. As he notes, except for the first one, his total production time was about two hours each.

    Pablo (99243e)

  43. It’s clear, in my view, that some organization paid Winner money to do this.

    That certainly could be, Juan. But unless and until that can be proven, there’s no there there.

    Pablo (99243e)

  44. Kudos to you, Patterico, for helping Jawa and the others to do the work that we used to read the major newspapers for. I’m sure “60 Minutes” has already called you for next Sunday, after the perfectly balanced campaign ad they ran for Obamessiah last night.

    driver (56cdca)

  45. No, this is not an expensive ad. This entire thing could be done on one’s laptop, including recording the voiceover.

    Except I doubt the voice talent was free/very low cost, since it was the same one they always use. The voice-over really is what probably makes it pricey…

    Scott Jacobs (a1c284)

  46. To me, the abrupt and complete scrubbing says far more than any of the rest of it. An innocent would be defending the video, a “fellow traveler” would be screaming that this was all Rove’s fault anyway. This screams “guilty”. Far too coordinated. Next time, they’ll be more subtle about it.

    htom (412a17)

  47. jharp – Who gives a shit about Rick Davis when according to YOU, Phil Gramm is responsible for this mess

    You are right, I don’t give a shit.

    I am only concerned about policy and Obama wins on every front.

    Troop withdrawals from Iraq? Check.
    Middle class tax cuts? Check.
    Real health care reform? Check.
    Real VP to step in if necessary? Check.

    And Gramm didn’t do it single handed. He had mountains of republican support.

    It’s not McCain I’m down on. It’s the GOP.

    The have fouled things up unprecedentedly.

    jharp (f4bed7)

  48. Oh, and another reason I’m down on the GOP. They don’t know their ass from first base on foreign policy.

    Colin Powell yesterday.

    POWELL: And I think it was foolhardy on the part of President Saakashvili and the Georgian government to kick over this can, to light a match in a roomful of gas fumes.

    SESNO: So you’re saying the Georgians provoked this?

    POWELL: They did. I mean, there was a lot of reasons to have provocations in the area, but the match that started the conflagration was from the Georgian side.

    AMANPOUR: And yet…

    POWELL: And that’s a given.

    AMANPOUR: And some debate in the presidential elections has basically been, “We are all Georgians now.” What does that mean? It’s the same as was said after 9/11.

    POWELL: One candidate said that, and I’ll let the candidate explain it for himself. […] You have to be very careful in a situation like this not just to leap to one side or the other until you’ve taken a good analysis of the whole situation.

    jharp (f4bed7)

  49. …his total production time was about two hours each.

    I believe he did it in two hours, but an ad agency would bill far more hours to make a proposal, write the scrip, review video clips, confer with the client, set up the stealth You Tube accounts, etc, etc.

    Perfect Sense (9d1b08)

  50. Albright and Powell: ‘We May Go to War With Russia!’

    Five former secretaries of state took the stage on CNN last night to discuss the challenges facing the next president. So nuanced were their pronouncements and noncomittal their advice that I’m now anxiously awaiting the day they form the wacky cast of a cornpone sketch-comedy show about world conflicts, tentatively titled “Hem Haw.”

    Minnie Pearl Madeleine Albright was asked about letting Georgia and Ukraine into NATO, and the possibility that doing so would mean the U.S. would have to respond to Russian aggression in those regions:

    AMANPOUR: Now you’ve got Russia invading Georgia. Is the advice to the next president of the United States therefore, you have to go to war against Russia in order to protect your NATO allies?

    ALBRIGHT: …I also think that countries have the right to choose whatever alliance they want to be in. And the main thing, while I fully agree that we can’t go back to the Cold War and have a really very bad adversarial relationship with Russia, Russia cannot think that independent countries on its border are a threat to them.

    So I think — I personally believe that we need to go forward with the Membership Action Plan for Georgia and for Ukraine, and keep explaining that it is not a threat.

    Amanpour then tossed the question to Colin Powell, saying, “if Russia is (the aggressor) and you have to, you know, keep your NATO allies’ security, aren’t you then committed?”

    POWELL: Under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, which is the NATO Treaty, when one member of the alliance is attacked from abroad — meaning outside the NATO geographic limits — then all members of NATO treat that as an attack…

    We cannot say to the Russians, “We are not going to allow the Georgians or Ukrainians or anyone else to start down the path toward NATO membership.” It’s not for the Russians to decide that.

    Oddly enough, I can find no blaring headlines this morning claiming Albright and Powell want to “go to war with Russia.” Nothing along the lines of what we saw after Charlie Gibson’s interview with Sarah Palin produced essentially the same answer from the vice presidential candidate.

    You’ll see “Hem Haw” hit primetime before you see anyone in the media point this out.

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/weblogs/TWSFP/2008/09/albright_and_powell_we_may_go.asp

    ROA (bea1d3)

  51. ROA,

    Weekly Standard, huh?

    Good one. And if you’d take the time to read it carefully and think you’d see exactly what a bunch of nonsense it is.

    jharp (f4bed7)

  52. Only a moonbat leftie would think that cogent, thoughtful analysis of current events is nonsense.

    But, that wouldn’t be anyone who opines at this site, would it?

    Another Drew (a81639)

  53. jharp continues his thread hijack.

    In other news:

    Pablo 10:38am – A good exercise would be to see what either the McCain campaign or the Obama campaign paid for their current tv ads, then a comparison could be made.

    5 kids can videotape a home movie that’s 30 seconds long and spend nothing, and a professionally filmed commercial runs about 150,000 per day of production costs, and can take several days to shoot.

    The important designation is ‘professional’.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  54. http://www.juancole.com/2008/09/nation-of-masochists.html

    Well said, Juan Cole.

    “The Republican Party came to Washington, DC, in 2000 with a solid majority in both houses of Congress and on the Supreme Court. If you wanted to know what a pure Republican-Party government unhindered by the Democrats, Libertarians, Greens or Socialists might look like, this was the moment.

    So they came to power when there was a budget surplus bequeathed by a Democratic president.

    They immediately ran up a big deficit every year since, doubling the national debt from $5 trillion to $10 trillion. You don’t run big deficits of $300 and $400 billion a year in good times according to Keynes. You save the the deficit spending for a recession, when the economy needs a jolt. If you’re already racking up a big deficit every year in a good economy, you have no way of making a difference during a significant downturn except by then going for a truly mega-deficit, which risks destroying the value of your currency abroad”…

    There was the Iraq War, one of the great criminal conspiracies of modern times. Barton Gellman has how related the story of how Dick Cheney lied to Dick Armey before the vote on the war, telling him that Saddam’s family was all al-Qaeda and that Saddam’s evil scientists had made a suitcase nuclear bomb that he would certainly turn over to Bin Laden, and such rank horse manure as that. Dick Armey weeps, says he deserved better than to be bullshitted by the vice president of the United States.

    “They took us to war against a country that had not attacked the United States; they killed or maimed 33,000 Americans, and turned a whole Arab Muslim country into a burned-out hulk, displacing millions and continuously bombing the very cities that they had conquered and occupied, killing and disfiguring.

    They propagandized us with implausible lies about mobile biological weapons labs and Baathist al-Qaeda, and our journalists and their corporate bosses bought them hook line and sinker, as did the public.”

    Please read the entire article.

    And then let your conscience be your guide. (if you have one, that is)

    jharp (f4bed7)

  55. Jharp – What the Weekly Standard piece is is a series of quotes from Colin Powell stating that Madeline Albright stating that we should support Georgia if they decide to join NATO. A position that agrees with both Senator Obama’s and Senator Biden’s position on Georgia.

    ROA (bea1d3)

  56. Jharp continues to dance as fast as it can to distract from the slimy smear job that is the subject of this thread.

    The reason?

    This scandal is direct evidence that the image of Barack Obama is nothing more than a carefully crafted PR campaign. This is why Obama is the candidate – they needed a blank slate with no history so the Ad men could go to work and deliver the ‘perfect’ candidate. Unfortunately this little operation exposes the facade, a phony structure that only looks solid from the front.

    Keep dancing, jharp.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  57. I read that whole Shackleford piece. And wow.

    There’s whole cloth dare devil jumps of logic and speculation and assumption and conjecture, and just plain old paranoia and holes that you could drive a truck through.

    There’s nothing connecting Obama to any of this. Certainly not a money trail.

    There isn’t even a money trail connecting Winner and Assoc to it. It may have been produced by them, but what does that prove? There’s thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of people expressing their political views on You tube or making shit up.

    It makes no sense.

    A lot of deft foot work, but this is a whole lot of dancing with no music.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  58. Misinformation from #54

    So they came to power when there was a budget surplus bequeathed by a Democratic president.

    The balanced budget was provide by the Republican Congress.

    They immediately ran up a big deficit every year since…

    Would “they” include the Democrats who have controlled Congress the past two years?

    They took us to war against a country that had not attacked the United States…

    Are you talking about WWII Germany?

    …and turned a whole Arab Muslim country into a burned-out hulk…

    I missed the carpet bombing stories.

    Perfect Sense (9d1b08)

  59. You are right, I don’t give a shit.
    — Which, if you follow George Carlin logic, means you are full of it.

    Troop withdrawals from Iraq? Check.
    — Already taking place. Check.
    Middle class tax cuts? Check.
    — Already took place. Check.
    Real health care reform? Check.
    — Will take place without expanding the size of government. Check.
    Real VP to step in if necessary? Check.
    — Read her lipstick: check and mate.

    Colin Powell yesterday.
    — The man who, according to liberal holy writ, lied to the UN about WMD in Iraq all of a sudden knows what he’s talking about?

    Powell: You have to be very careful in a situation like this not just to leap to one side or the other until you’ve taken a good analysis of the whole situation.
    — Great. You quote a respected man doing his best Obama impression and voting “present”. All you’ve done is prove that the “Draft Powell” movement was wrong.

    Icy Truth (48b514)

  60. Apogeee you’re so concerned about political free speech, yet how quickly you begin to shout from the rafters about the “unfit” nature of any and all Democrats running for President.

    There’s nothing here, friend. What, if anything, is proof positive that the Obama campaign is connected to it or even has knowledge of it??

    There is none. There is only a PR agency, with absolutely zero connection to Obama, who’s worked with some Dems before, of which certain family members uploaded and commented upon a YOUTUBE video. Think about that a second before you get all seduced by the investigation and forget about arriving at any tangible proof.

    There is no “compelling argument” as Shackleford wrotes, this is a fantasy . A long windy wishlist of connections and speculations and conjectures. A conspiracy theory. Political onanism for right wing bloggers.

    It reads like one of those truther screeds.

    Seems to me, as usual right now, the Right is desperate to stain Obama and make him “dirty,” even as McCain and Palin becoming dirtier and dirtier and less credible themselves.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  61. Colin Powell yesterday.

    POWELL: And I think it was foolhardy on the part of President Saakashvili and the Georgian government to kick over this can, to light a match in a roomful of gas fumes.

    SESNO: So you’re saying the Georgians provoked this?

    POWELL: They did. I mean, there was a lot of reasons to have provocations in the area, but the match that started the conflagration was from the Georgian side.

    AMANPOUR: And yet…

    POWELL: And that’s a given.

    AMANPOUR: And some debate in the presidential elections has basically been, “We are all Georgians now.” What does that mean? It’s the same as was said after 9/11.

    POWELL: One candidate said that, and I’ll let the candidate explain it for himself. […] You have to be very careful in a situation like this not just to leap to one side or the other until you’ve taken a good analysis of the whole situation.

    Comment by jharp

    Powell is showing his age. He seems to be handling age less easily than McCain. I would suggest reading Michael Totten, who was there, on how the Russian invasion of Georgia went down.

    Anyone who relies on the MSM anymore is deluding himself or wants to believe lies, like harp.

    Powell has diminished himself with this.

    Mike K (f89cb3)

  62. Misinformation #58

    #

    Misinformation from #54

    So they came to power when there was a budget surplus bequeathed by a Democratic president.

    The balanced budget was provide by the Republican Congress.

    The President puts together the budget.

    They immediately ran up a big deficit every year since…

    Would “they” include the Democrats who have controlled Congress the past two years?

    No, mostly the rubber stamp GOP congress that did the will of GWB for 6 unbroken years and then turned into an obstructionist tool in the last two years.

    They took us to war against a country that had not attacked the United States…

    Are you talking about WWII Germany?

    No, he’s talking about IRAQ. You might’ve heard of it? The country that didn’t attack Poland or annex Czechoslovakia or occupy France. As a matter of fact they were completely contained within their own borders, with now here to go, no WMDs and a rotting army.

    …and turned a whole Arab Muslim country into a burned-out hulk…

    I missed the carpet bombing stories.

    You obviously missed much more than that.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  63. Peter – only a PR agency, with absolutely zero connection to Obama, who’s worked with some Dems before, of which certain family members uploaded and commented upon a YOUTUBE video.

    Yes Peter, quite harmless.

    Then why scrub all traces from the web late Sunday night within 2 hours of inconvenient questions raised by a blogger?

    You pretend that this is just someone exercising their right to political speech. Why go to all that work and then run when someone inquires about it?

    That is what is suspicious, and that is what makes me highly doubt your made up assertion that there’s ‘zero connection to Obama’.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  64. Re: the article quoted by jharp –

    Since when has the Republican Party EVER had “a solid majority … on the Supreme Court”? Rehnquist and O’Connor were more “solid” than Roberts and Alito? Kennedy wasn’t there pulling his shenanigans back then?

    “They took us to war against a country that had not attacked the United States”
    — Very good! Is there any other basic history you would like to relate here, in this forum where you need to at least be at the intermediate level in order to keep up?

    turned a whole Arab Muslim country into a burned-out hulk,
    — So they turned the entire country into “a burned-out hulk” except for the 25% that is not Arab? or, except for the 3% that is not Muslim? or is it both? or is it just the fraction of that 3% non-Muslims who also are not Arab? Oh, and if you’re just saying that it is a majority Arab-Muslim country (which it is), WHERE is the proof that it is a burned-out hulk?

    continuously bombing the very cities that they had conquered and occupied, killing and disfiguring.
    — “Continuously bombing” our own troops, are we?

    jharp wrote: Please read the entire article. And then let your conscience be your guide. (if you have one, that is)
    — Please look at the falsehoods pointed out by myself and others; and then let your conscience compel you to acknowledge those mistakes, and that once again you have accepted someone else’s flawed opinion at face value.

    Icy Truth (aea3ff)

  65. What surprised me was the California angle.

    The part about Michael Peevey’s wife taking campaign contributions from the companies that he regulated as chairman of the Public Utilities Commission was news. How come I hadn’t heard that before?

    The fact that Peevey’s son was Joe Wilson’s and Valerie Plame’s PR guy was dismaying too.

    Joseph Somsel (e5cbf5)

  66. This l’il jihad here is going to go the way of Patterico and his munchkins’ demands for a copy of der Spiegel’s interview with al-Maliki. I’m still rooting for Patterico to get his hands on it and find a good conservative translator to work on it and change the election. Surely it is still damning, if only anybody would pay attention.
    Why isn’t the MSM interested in all this about Palin and the AIP? Because they want to know “Where’s the smear?”

    BTW, Iced True-Beliver: Todd quit the party just as Sarah went for the governor’s mansion. Why? Seems to me he/they recognized the liability. As the Church Lady would say: How conveeeeeeenyunt.” But she worked to keep the party’s favor by doing the video.
    And you say the AIP’s founder/leader had the wacky ideas but the party itself shouldn’t be judged on that. Huh? Did he lie to them?

    re: smear, BTW2: Did you know that Obama backed legislation in Illinois that would have pre-schoolers taught about sperm and eggs and zygotes and erections and bumpin’ ugglies and all that stuff? That is, after all, what sex ed is all about. Oh, my. Let’s make a video about it and go virus.

    Larry Reilly (d11f9a)

  67. The Politico’s Ben Smith actually covers this story, albeit embedded with a dozen other links. But note the title of the URL:

    http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0908/Remainders_Jawa_Report.html?showall

    DRJ (c953ab)

  68. No, I didn’t know that, Larry. What I know is that the legislation required that kindergartners be taught about preventing STD’s.

    Pablo (99243e)

  69. In case there was ever any doubt, Ethan Winner is the source of the video. See ace or Rusty for Ethan’s statement.

    MartyH (52fae7)

  70. “What I know is that the legislation required that kindergartners be taught about preventing STD’s.”

    No. The legislation required that any sex-ed class that was going to be taught should include information on STD’s and child abuse. It only mandated information to be included. It did not mandate the courses themselves. That choice was left to the locals.

    readnek (105b91)

  71. Why are people supposed to care about any of this? Is it really newsworthy if the Obama team put out an ad highlighting Palin’s secessionist husband?

    Good luck with this; the more focus on Palin’s grotesque backstory that the McCain camp has tried to bury, the better.

    jpe (bd88bc)

  72. jharp, it is hilarious to see how outclassed you are in every topic you attempt to introduce.

    Peter, you might read the Constitution someday. Try Article I.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  73. jpe, it is newsworthy if the Obama team is – again – engaging in dirty tricks. In this case, putting out ads without disclosure that is arguably required by law.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  74. No, mostly the rubber stamp GOP congress that did the will of GWB for 6 unbroken years and then turned into an obstructionist tool in the last two years.

    Actually, Peter, I’m going to give you some credit here. You have it backwards, but that is nothing new. Bush failed to do two things, in my opinion. He allowed Hastert, who I hope was heavily invested in AIG stock, to talk him into signing all that GOP spending under Hastert’s watch. Had Bush vetoed a couple of bills, we might be much better off and I know McCain would not have to campaign into the head wind he has.

    Secondly, Bush did not defend the dollar. He bought the theory that a cheap dollar makes our exports cheaper. Had he defended the dollar, oil prices would not have spiked and the interest rates that fed the FM2 orgy of lending would have been mitigated.

    He bears serious responsibility. Sort of like the man who walks by a rape and does nothing. Of course, the Democrats were the rapists but Bush should have done something. Nobody really expects Presidents to be knowledgeable about economics. Nixon, a policy wonk if there ever was one, said “We are all Keynesians now” just as Keynes was proven wrong.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  75. This l’il jihad here is going to go the way of Patterican (and his munchkins’)earlier demands for a copy of der Spiegel’s interview with al-Maliki. I’m still rooting for Patterico to get his hands on it and find a good conservative translator to work on it and change the election. Surely it is still damning, if only anybody would pay attention.
    Why isn’t the MSM interested in all this about Palin and the AIP? Because they want to know “Where’s the smear?”

    BTW, Iced True-Beliver: Todd quit the party just as Sarah went for the governor’s mansion. Why? Seems to me he/they recognized the liability. As the Church Lady would say: How conveeeeeeenyunt.” But she worked to keep the party’s favor by doing the video.
    And you say the AIP’s founder/leader had the wacky ideas but the party itself shouldn’t be judged on that. Huh? Did he lie to them?

    re: smear, BTW2: Did you know that Obama backed legislation in Illinois that would have pre-schoolers taught about sperm and eggs and zygotes and erections and bumpin’ ugglies and all that stuff? That is, after all, what sex ed is all about. Oh, my. Let’s make a video about it and go virus.

    Larry Reilly (d11f9a)

  76. Larry, spamming the same comment is not appropriate behavior.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  77. The Weekly Standard is all over this now.

    Gregory (f7735e)

  78. Apogee:

    Then why scrub all traces from the web late Sunday night within 2 hours of inconvenient questions raised by a blogger?

    Because they have a business, one and they can’t afford to alienate their clients which include, oh you know ExxonFrickin’Mobil.

    That is what is suspicious, and that is what makes me highly doubt your made up assertion that there’s ‘zero connection to Obama’.

    My assertion of no Obama connection is not made up. I read the Shackleford piece closely and there’s nothing there. No smoking gun. No money trail. Shackleford himself states that the connection to Obama is “conjecture”. HE writes:


    So, the million dollar question is who, if any one, paid Winner & Associates to produce this ad?

    [NOTE: The Jawa Report legal department has pleaded with me to point out that everything from this point forward is pure conjecture on my part.

    That said…]

    THE OBAMA CONNECTION

    My initial money was on George Soros who has contributed to Winner run campaigns in the past, . The sheer viciousness of the attack bears all of the hallmarks of Moveon.org.

    But it could be any number of 527s that Obama has now given the wink-wink-nudge-nudge to start hammering away at McCain.

    Or the money could come from an untraceable source like the “charitable organization” run by Justyn Winner.

    So why would any one hire a PR firm like W&R? Did I mention that they specialize in “crisis communications?” Again, from the Publicis website:

    Which leaves open the possibility that Obama or the Democratic Party might also be the ones paying for the campaign. Is there anything that might be suggestive of that? Yes there is.

    Really. Fantasy. Neocon Jihad. Ratfu*king 2008. Call it what you want. This so called investigation is designed to shake the tree and see what comes flying out in the so called cover up, which seemed to run concurrent to the actual uncovering of the story itself. It’s like wagging the tail of a fantasy to watch what shadows hit the wall and then claim substantive proof from the reverse engineering of unrelated sources.

    Not tho mention this is NOT an objective investigation by a long shot. Which taints the findings even further.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  79. Larry, spamming the same comment is not appropriate behavior.

    Mary Reilly is really a sweet, little girl – so let’s pretend that she’s a big girl now, and has grown – up ideas.

    Who’s a Big Girl, now – why, it’s you, Mawy!

    Dmac (e639cc)

  80. Peter 6:39pm – Because they have a business, one and they can’t afford to alienate their clients which include, oh you know ExxonFrickin’Mobil.

    You would think a media-savvy PR firm would refrain from doing something like this on their own, because of the reason you just stated. Which would point to the rather obvious conclusion of it being a work-for-hire.

    Which leads to the next question: Who hired them?

    I would think that to do damage control on a story like this, after the pooch has been screwed, they would be pushing for a 527 or some other such group to cover for the Obama campaign. After all, if it was a 527, they would want to quickly remove all question of the connection to the Obama campaign, rather than sit tight and allow speculation to make the connection. Probably at least as quickly as they scrubbed the web of all related materials.

    One more point: If you feel that Shackelford’s work is NOT an objective investigation by a long shot, which taints the findings, then you should refrain from quoting it to prove your assertion regarding the conjectural nature of the Obama connection.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  81. Who the f*ck cares?

    Seriously.

    Can anyone here even explain the alledged ethical principle violated here, beyond, in the worst case scenario, “Obama made a mean ad and didn’t put his name on it?”

    What you have so far is: a Democrat made a mean video of McCain, allegedly saying things that aren’t true.

    Your best-case-scenario – for which you have nothing – is … Obama made a mean, dishonest ad about McCain and he didn’t put his name on it.

    There’s a reason no MSM story will pick this up. The reason is that there’s nothing to report. Even if the whole pile of fantasy and speculation was true, what you have is a resounding dud. Do you know how many FEC violations McCain’s campaign has committed so far? Do you know in how many ads he’s made false and dishonest statements?

    Do you know how deep the Bush fingerprints were on the Swift Boat Veterans, and how much of their cr*p was lies, piled on top of the 15% that might, or might not have been true? Fat lot of good that did John Kerry.

    Seriously, folks. You want to get some television minutes, you need something better than “I have a theory about how maybe the Obama campaign made an ad and didn’t put their names on it”. Conservative bloggers care – ordinary people, not so much.

    PS: Whether or not S.P. ever registered as an AIP member, she’s very connected to them. More connected than, say, Franklin Raines or Toney Rezko to another candidate. A lot of people were legitimately fooled into thinking she was a registered member because.. AIP leaders were quoted saying she was, and they had it on their website. Hmmmmmmmmmm.
    Wonder how they got so confused about that?

    glasnost (a51fd8)

  82. Whether or not S.P. ever registered as an AIP member, she’s very connected to them. More connected than, say, Franklin Raines or Toney Rezko to another candidate.

    Indeed. I’m told that the head of the AIP essentially gave Sarah Palin hundreds of thousands of dollars, by buying a piece of property for her that had to be bought — otherwise she couldn’t buy her own house. This favor benefitted her to the tune of well over half a million dollars. Clearly a close connection.

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  83. glasnost – Who the f*ck cares?

    You do. Enough to try and distract from it.

    Ethical principal? No one’s talking ethics. We’re talking about the candidate for the Presidency and his campaign hiring a PR firm to fake a grassroots level smear of an apparently dangerous Republican VP candidate.

    This isn’t about ethics.

    It’s about weakness, and an obvious inability to face down a stronger and more experienced candidate that just happens to be running for a lower office.

    It’s about being so frightened of Sarah Palin that the Obama campaign needs to secretly contract out PR hit men to smear her, rather than face off against her ideas. And when that’s discovered? They run and hide like dogs.

    It’s not about ‘mean and dishonest ads’, it’s about the Obama campaign demonstrating through their actions that their ideas can not stand up to scrutiny against those of someone running for the office of Vice President.

    Sarah Palin represents true change, Obama knows it, and this episode exposes the fact that it is the Obama campaign that is really ‘more of the same’.

    The same sleazy, underhanded politics.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  84. One more point: If you feel that Shackelford’s work is NOT an objective investigation by a long shot, which taints the findings, then you should refrain from quoting it to prove your assertion regarding the conjectural nature of the Obama connection.

    I quoted Shackelford to show that he states outright that the Obama connection is “conjecture.”

    Are you saying Shackelford is not to be trusted even on the assertion that what he’s hypothesizing is based on speculation and conjsecture? Because that would make his tainted and partisan and unobjective investigation even more worthless, than it already is in regard to any connection whatsoever between that video and Obama.

    Anyhow, it really is a stretch to even humor this trash. As Glasnost said: Who cares? It was obvious Bush/Rove who was behind SBVT and look how much good that did Kerry. In this case you have some private citizens making a damned Youtube video bringing up questions about SP’s connections to AIP. An organization her husband belonged to and that she obviously had/has very warm relations with.

    There’s no 527 and nothing to verify who made it and why and if there was any monies involved.

    Like I said, this exercise by Shackleford is too clever by half and inconclusive (read: FAIL) at best. It’s engineered to take advantage of any hint of a “cover-up.”

    Peter (e70d1c)

  85. Are you saying Shackelford is not to be trusted even on the assertion that what he’s hypothesizing is based on speculation and conjsecture?

    No. That’s what you implied when you wrote this is NOT an objective investigation by a long shot. Which taints the findings even further.
    Except when you like the findings, apparently.

    In this case you have some private citizens making a damned Youtube video bringing up questions about SP’s connections to AIP.
    You mean lies about her connections. Lies that benefit Obama’s campaign.
    And if it’s just innocent private citizens, why not leave it up? Nothing illegal there.

    There’s no 527 and nothing to verify who made it and why and if there was any monies involved.
    Only the hurried removal of not just the video, but of all the newly manufactured web material. Material that does support who made it.
    Removed completely in 2 hours.
    Late Sunday night.
    Scrubbed clean.
    Like it was never there – except for the screen shots.
    Not the work of ‘private citizens’ with nothing to lose by leaving it up.

    Someone had something to lose.
    … in regard to any connection whatsoever between that video and Obama.
    Why so nervous?
    It’s engineered to take advantage of any hint of a “cover-up.”

    Except that there’s a lot more than a ‘hint’.

    Keep protesting, Peter, you could teach Biden a thing or two.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  86. Hey, somebody discovered a direct link between Axelrod and Winner’s firm on a prior assignment in Detroit.

    Will wonders never cease. All circumstantial connections, don’t you know.

    daleyrocks (d9ec17)

  87. Looks like this might be getting some legs.

    Apogee (366e8b)

  88. Yahoo News has picked up the story:

    http://news.yahoo.com/story/ap/20080923/ap_on_el_pr/palin_hacked;_ylt=AjL8qriyPrTKQy1r3ftB__zMWM0F

    See bottom of the page. I have done a screen capture.

    M. Simon (aa0cde)

  89. Will Caesars never wonder, my dad used to say.

    Thanks, daleyrocks. I updated my latest post and notified the guys behind the story.

    Patterico (cc3b34)

  90. So, what’s up Pat? No desire to make Shackleford and Malkin look like complete idiots smearing Obama and Axelrod on the merest suggestion?

    Not even an update? Don’t you think the fact that John McCain has worked for Winner & Mandabach, as a mouthpiece, on a campaign that suggests serious conflict of interest isn’t worth noticing?

    http://tinyurl.com/4cq9rr

    Peter (e70d1c)

  91. Guess not.

    Peter (e70d1c)

  92. Spamming the entire site with the same crap, Peter? typical behavior on your part.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  93. It’s a talking point. Why do you think he appears with these. He has his orders: “Get in their faces.”

    Note that the issue is an Arizona issue and, the last time I checked, McCain represented Arizona. Obama, on the other hand, was heavily involved in a national issue(Fannie Freddie) that had marginal connection to Illinois, at least once Penny Pritzker’s family bank went bust, sticking the taxpayers for $150 million. And that was before the housing bubble broke.

    Mike K (155601)

  94. No, the issue is why if McCain is connected to Winner and Mandabach, none of the Right wing bloggers who got all worked up about Rusty Shackleford’s BS investigation being the golden bullet can’t also acknowledge this small documented and undeniable fact.

    It’s beginning to look like a cover-up.

    Peter (e70d1c)


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