washington monthly

Washington Monthly

Leftwing publication and website that rapidly deletes comments that show how they're wrong. There are two very strong reasons why even their most ardent supporters should avoid linking to them:

1. As of at least 2007, their old entries (and the entries at Kevin Drum's old CalPundit site) were clogged with the worst spam imaginable. Linking to pages containing ads for disreputable products and potions might cause search engines to think you're part of those spammers' networks.

2. As of October 28, 2010, they have a sidebar block containing links to very "interesting" sites. Those links don't have the nofollow attribute, which means if you link to a Washington Monthly page some of your "link juice" will eventually flow to those selling those "interesting" products. As with the first, that might cause search engines to think you're part of the network selling those "interesting" products.

Last modified Oct 28, 2010
Discussed in (click each link for the full post):

Even Washington Monthly (somewhat) admits the "challenges" of massive low-skilled immigration (Texas, Phillip Longman) - 03/03/14

A rare moment of clarity on mass immigration comes from Washington Monthly as senior editor Phillip Longman (also linked to the New America Foundation offers "Oops: The Texas Miracle That Isn’t" ( peekURL.com/zRPFqc5 ).

No, Sharron Angle isn't calling Social Security "wicked" (Harry Reid is lying) - 10/28/10

[See the update: Harry Reid is lying about Angle's comments]

The Democratic Party's "Accountability Project" uploaded [1] the audio below, apparently trying to make people think that Sharron Angle is calling Social Security and similar programs "wicked". In fact, she's not calling those programs "wicked". What she considers wicked are those who turn their backs on the least among them, relying on government programs to take care of people they should be taking care of. On the audio she accepts social safety net programs as a reality, she just thinks that people should take care of those in their own communities more than they do.

Here's the relevant part of the audio:

We as a nation have been walking away from our constitutional freedom and relying on government instead to take care of the widow and the orphan. Isn't that what He says? True religion and [inaudible] for God is that you care for the widow and the orphan. Isn't that the poor and needy among us? And, yet, we're saying, let the government have all these programs now: AFDC, Medicare, Social Security, and that's fine. But, isn't it we that should be thinking about this? Isn't it us that should be caring in our community for those that the Lord has called us [inaudible, "to lead"?], saying you honor Him, you love Him, if you care for these the least among you.

Those trying to mislead about this include Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly [2]:

Also keep in mind, Angle has been trying to convince Nevadans that she actually wants to preserve Social Security, despite having already committed herself to trying to "phase out" the bedrock American safety-net program. What we have, then, is a borderline-deranged Senate hopeful telling reporters she supports Social Security, while quietly telling supporters she considers Social Security -- along with Medicare, abortion, divorce, and gay marriage -- to be "wicked."

She does in fact consider abortion to be "wicked" but, once again, the same isn't true of social welfare programs themselves. What she considers "wicked" is people turning their backs on the least among them.

As can be seen, I'm not in any way a fan of Sharron Angle or the Tea Parties. It's beyond pathetic that her opponents can't make a good case against someone out on the fringe but have to try to mislead instead.

UPDATE: Harry Reid has released a deceptive new ad entitled 'Sharron Angle Called Social Security and Medicare "Wicked"' and with the description "In Sharron Angle's Nevada, Social Security and Medicare would be eliminated because they are "wicked" and defy the laws of God as she sees them. While she won't talk to media or voteres, we've compiled her greatest hits." Watch it here: peekurl.com/vypitld

The ad takes her comments out of context for the reasons discussed above: Harry Reid is lying.

------------------
[1] accountabilityproject.com
[2] washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_10/026349.php (I strongly recommend against linking to the Washington Monthly, see that link for the details).

Here's the audio, also available at peekURL.com/vx5q4tm

Dennis Welch, Kos, Amanda Terkel, Steve Benen, Ben Smith, Ben Frumin smear Jan Brewer over quote - 06/02/10

Arizona governor Jan Brewer is threatening to cost powerful people money and power through actions such as signing that state's new anti-illegal immigration law. Their lower-level hacks are currently swinging into action, deliberately misinterpreting a quote Brewer made in a disreputable attempt to claim that she inflated her father's war record [UPDATE: Statement from Brewer below]. Some are listed below, and if you find others please leave a comment.

During World War 2, Brewer's father worked at a Navy munitions depot in Nevada; he died in 1955 as a result of lung disease from that job. Brewer made the quote that's being misinterpreted in an interview with the Arizona Republic (link) where she spoke about the names she's been called:

"The Nazi comments . . . they are awful... Knowing that my father died fighting the Nazi regime in Germany, that I lost him when I was 11 because of that . . . and then to have them call me Hitler's daughter. It hurts. It's ugliness beyond anything I've ever experienced."

If Noam Chomsky were here, he might point out that there are various ways to interpret that quote, such as "died [as a later result of] fighting the Nazi regime in Germany", or "died fighting the Nazi regime [which was located] in Germany". In order to obtain the result that illegal immigration supporters want you to obtain, you're going to need to forget about very basic math: if she meant to say he died during World War 2, the youngest she could be is 76. No one in their right mind would think she's 76. If she were trying to lie, she would have adjusted her age downward in the quote to "when I was one years old". Further, in a speech a few months ago she described the backstory (link):

The governor's father did fight the Nazis and support the war effort, but he did it here at a munitions plant in the United States, not as a soldier in the European theater.

Brewer recounted the story of her father's war service during a March breakfast speech in the East Valley, saying that “Wilford Drinkwine believed his country needed him during World War II.”

In that speech, Brewer recalled how that belief prompted Drinkwine to move his family to the Nevada desert to take a job at the country's largest Navy munitions depot. She was born a year or two later; her father succumbed to lung disease before she was a teenager.

“Years of breathing poisonous fumes around harsh chemicals finally took his life,” Brewer said in that speech. “Wilford Drinkwine was my father. I was 11 years old.”

Those smearing Brewer include the following. None of the following attempt to explain how - if one is to buy their interpretation of her comments - Brewer would be claiming to be at least 76 years old. None except the first reference the fact that she's told the accurate story in past instances:

* Dennis Welch of the Arizona Guardian
arizonaguardian.com/azg/index.php?option=com_content&
view=article&id=2101:brewer&catid=937:campaigns-a-elections-fp
He appears to be the originator of the smear, and his article starts with: "Gov. Jan Brewer said in a recent interview that her father died fighting Nazis in Germany. In fact, the death of Wilford Drinkwine came 10 years after World War II had ended." That's then followed by:

"She wasn't embellishing the story at all," [Paul Senseman, the governor's spokesman] said Tuesday. "You're reading something into this that isn't there."

He added that the governor has been very clear in the past about how her father died. Drinkwine was on full medical disability at the time of his death, Senseman said.

In a 2008 interview with the Republic, Brewer said her family was forced to move to California shortly before his death because of his health problems.

Brewer, 65, recounts similar stories in other media interviews and recent speeches.

Dennis Welch knew about what she's said about her background in the past, but choose to deliberately misinterpret her quote instead.

* Kos of DailyKos
dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/6/2/872320/
-AZ-Gov.-Jan-Brewer-lies-...-about-her-fathers-death
He refers to the "Latino ethnic cleansing law" and says, "Ah yes, claiming her father died fighting Nazis in Germany should, in no way, be construed as implying that her father died fighting Nazis in Germany." Needless to say, he's deliberately misinterpreting her quote.

* Steve Benen of Washington Monthly
washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_06/024077.php
His post is entitled "WHEN REPUBLICANS LIE ABOUT RELATIVES' SERVICE RECORDS" and he references and parrots Kos: "I'm confused. When Brewer said her "father died fighting the Nazi regime in Germany," that wasn't intended to mean that her father was an American soldier in Germany during the Nazi regime?"
As with the others, what he claims she said is simply his misinterpretation.

* Amanda Terkel of ThinkProgress
thinkprogress.org/2010/06/02/brewer-nazis-father
She says:

While comparisons equating Brewer with Nazis are over the top and not constructive, Brewer’s anecdote doesn’t really stack up. The Arizona Guardian reports that in fact, “the death of Wilford Drinkwine came 10 years after World War II had ended. During the war, Drinkwine worked as a civilian supervisor for a naval munitions depot in Hawthorne, Nev. He died of lung disease in 1955 in California.” Brewer’s spokesman justified the governor’s statement, claiming Drinkwine “eventually died from the toxic fumes he inhaled” while working at the factory. (HT: Markos)

Of course, what doesn't "stack up" is Terkel's interpretation of Brewer's quote. The spokesman's comment isn't a "justification", it's an explanation.

* Ben Smith of the Politico
politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0610/Brewer_claim_on_fathers_death_draws_scrutiny.html
He links the AZ Republic interview and the Arizona Guardian story, but fails to do any more reporting than any of the others listed who are open about being partisans.

* Ben Frumin of TalkingPointsMemo
tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/
az-gov-my-dad-died-fighting-the-nazis-in-germany-not-quite.php
His post, which isn't as bad as some others, does include this:

It seems entirely possible that Brewer simply meant that her father died of an illness that was a direct cause of his employment at a wartime munitions factor.

UPDATE: Brewer has released a statement (link):

"My father, Wilford Drinkwine, moved our family before I was born from Minnesota to Nevada to work at the Hawthorne Ammunition Depot in Western Nevada at the outset of World War II. He passed away when I was 11 years old. His death came after a long and painful battle with lung disease, contracted following years of exposure to hazardous chemicals and toxic fumes while working as a civil servant at the base.

"I loved my father and was proud to hear him tell me that he was doing his part to help fight the Nazis in Germany. It's a similar story that I have heard from countless people from my parent's generation -- from women who worked in the factories to other family friends I met growing up near the depot. My father and mother instilled in me an understanding that many of those defenders of freedom who lost their lives in World War II never set foot on the battlefield.

"Even in the end, when my dad struggled for breath, he never regretted serving his country, helping free Europe from Hitler's grip. I have proudly recounted his story in many places for many years. My father's patriotism and sacrifice needs no embellishment."

Reason #73218 why you can't trust Steve Benen, Alex Pareene, John Aravosis, HuffPost, and GottaLaff (McCain on illegal aliens "intentionally causing accidents") - 04/21/10

Yesterday in an appearance on the Bill O'Reilly show, John McCain said among other, more important things, that he supports Arizona's tough new immigration bill (not yet a law) because "the people whose homes and property are being violated. It's the drive-by that -- the drivers of cars with illegals in it that are intentionally causing accidents on the freeway." You can watch it here: peekURL.com/vztpe5h

Jon Henke: Sarah Palin's "death panels" are a "cartoon" (Peter Wallsten on GOP's quest for acceptance, respectability) - 09/14/09

Peter Wallsten of the Los Angeles Times - the reporter who refused to release the Obama/Khalidi tape (also here) - gleefully offers "Some fear GOP is being carried to the extreme/The Republican establishment hopes cooler heads will prevail over strongly anti-Obama parts of the conservative base" (link). In this case, Wallsten is what's called a "concern troll", and he's got some help.

Those weighing in on the side of pearl-clutching, intellectually-dishonest respectability include David Frum (former George W Bush speechwriter) and Michael Goldfarb (former spokesman for the McCain campaign).

Another is Jon Henke of TheNextRight (more about them later; for now see my comments here):

One WorldNetDaily article, which Henke called “hideously embarrassing” to conservatives, said that a Democratic proposal to create civilian emergency centers at military installations "appears designed to create the type of detention center that those concerned about use of the military in domestic affairs fear could be used as concentration camps for political dissidents, such as occurred in Nazi Germany."

Henke said, "There is a substantial discomfort among the people who want to make intellectual arguments and want to have a substantive role in the debate." He compared the Obama birth theorists to those who said Obama's healthcare overhaul would create "death panels."

" 'Death panels' is not a substantive contribution to the discussion. It's a cartoon," he said.

Farah mocked Henke and other critics in a column this month, saying they were doing liberals' bidding.

Indeed. And, in addition to alienating those who want the truth about the Obama citizenship issue - including a good portion of the readers of HotAir and Freerepublic - it's good to see Henke extending his outreach to supporters of Sarah Palin. While Obama healthcare doesn't include anything formally named "death panels", any time there are limited resources there will be some form of rationing, resulting in the same impact. See this from Michelle Malkin, and see also "Senate committee scraps healthcare provision that gave rise to 'death panel' claims/Though the claims are widely discredited, the Senate Finance Committee is withdrawing from its bill the inclusion of advance care planning consultations, calling them too confusing" from the LAT (link). Just as in this other case, a "fact" that was promulgated by the mainstream media and the Democrats turned out not to be a fact at all. The so-called "moderates" would have let the MSM and the Democrats get away with it; it took an apparent "fringe" person like Palin to bring it to light and force action. The "moderates" would have helped Obama and the Democrats; the "fringe" took them on. Now, that doesn't mean that everything the "fringe" says is accurate, but the smarter way to handle things is for those who are punctilious about the truth to explain what's true and what's not without attempting any purges. Needless to say, the "moderates" aren't smart enough to do that.

For some of those who agree with Frum, Goldfarb, and Henke, see this. Those Obama supporters who are also "concerned" that the GOP needs to rein in their extremists include Washington Monthly, Pandagon, The "Moderate" Voice, "The Mahablog", and Dave Weigel of the George Soros-funded Washington Independent. Henke, Frum, and Goldfarb are helping them and the LAT rather than taking them on.

Regarding the "emergency centers", here's the smart way to discuss that issue.

And, while Jerome Corsi and WorldNetDaily occasionally get their facts or conclusions wrong, they're in general an invaluable resource for Obama opponents and those who oppose things such as massive/illegal immigration and steps towards a North American Union. Without their attention to the latter, attempts to "harmonize" things between the three countries might be further along than they are now. And, note also that Corsi was one of the main targets of the Obama campaign; they went as far as silently editing one of his quotes in an attempt to make him look bad.

The choice for Republicans doesn't have to be between the wimpy elite RINOs and the True Conservative "fringe". Someone who holds truly moderate positions could help the GOP and could effectively oppose the Democrats. The issue is that the word "moderate" is defined by the MSM and the Democrats, and in the case of GOP leaders it generally includes someone who helps the MSM and the Democrats, as can be seen above.

UPDATE: In comments, someone says that Lyndon LaRouche was the first to come up with the "death panels" claim. If that person is her, get in touch for free deprogramming. If the person is another Larouche supporter, maybe you're right; I'm not going to bother looking into the timeline. If the person left that message in an attempt to portray Palin as "fringe" in the LaRouchian style, no sale. If LaRouche says the sky is blue, I'm not going to say it's green just because I feel some need to always disagree with everything he says or because I want others to see me disagreeing with him.

Also, it's worth recalling a couple of the other "moderate" positions offered by the MSM and their allies: pandering to the National Council of La Raza and supporting comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. Neither are in any way moderate despite being sold as such by the MSM.

Washington Monthly deletes comment on post extolling "diversity of thought", openness - 02/10/09

The Washington Monthly has a habit of deleting comments, and they're even willing to do it on entries lionizing Barack Obama for being open to a "diversity of thought". I guess some "diversities of thought" are more equal than others.

"Liberals" support quotas, just not for white men, southerners (Obama cabinet) - 12/22/08

Many "liberals" believe in quotas in everything, whether they admit it or not. However, there are limits to liberalism. Namely, when the quota involves white men, especially white men from the South. Following are four recent examples involving the selections Barack Obama has made for his cabinet and top administration positions. These are reactions to the article "Southerners are the missing group in Obama's Cabinet" (link), which quotes Larry Sabato as saying:

"Obama scored a tremendous advance for Democrats in winning the three large Southern states and ignored them... I'm just stunned. It was the one grouping completely ignored."

Steve Benen/Washington Monthly gets hat trick: deletes three comments in one day - 10/04/08

Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly has scored a hat trick: he or his helpers deleted three comments I left on his entries today. And, the deletions happened very shortly after I left the comments, so obviously they're very worried about their readers learning about the things that Steve Benen isn't willing to tell them.

Scott Shane/NYT's pro-BHO spin on Bill Ayers/Barack Obama collaboration - 10/04/08

Scott Shane of the New York Times offers "Obama and '60s Bomber: A Look Into Crossed Paths" (originally titled "Obama Had Met Ayers, but the Two Are Not Close"). If you believe the NYT, then everything's fine and dandy, and Barack Obama and 60s radical Bill Ayers are not close. The fact that they aren't close and never were close and nothing funny went on and there's nothing to see here is especially important because Ayers is a former and allegedly unrepentant terrorist who's since been, in Shane's words, "rehabilitated".

On the other hand, if you actually want the truth, compare the second paragraph on page 2 ("In fact, according to several people involved...") to the email here. Why, it's almost like Shane is reading from a script provided by Ken Rolling, the former executive director of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge.

And, for much more, see this response to the article: NYT's Ayers-Obama Whitewash. Regarding Scott Shane letting Ayers claim that he mostly only wanted to do property damage with his bombs, see this.

See also this from Steve Diamond:

an exchange of letters in late 1994, copies of which I obtained from Brown University, between Vartan Gregorian, then President of Brown and the individual responsible for assessing applications for grants from the national Annenberg Challenge, and Bill Ayers, the founder of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, demonstrates that Ayers played a direct role in "composing" the Challenge's board of directors... I was interviewed at length by the New York Times for today’s story. In fact, this was the third Times reporter to interview me about the Ayers/Obama relationship - and I provided the Times with the letters I discuss here. They are not mentioned in the story at all.

See also "Ayers Was on Woods Fund Board with Obama When He Stepped on Flag" (LGF, peekURL.com/zab252h). That links to this August 2001 Chicago Magazine article entitled "No Regrets"; it includes a picture of Bill Ayers stepping on a U.S. flag. It also links to 'Obama served on a board with former Weather Underground member William Ayers and "that relationship with Mr. Ayers on this board continued after 9/11"', a fact check of a Hillary Clinton statement about Obama's association with Ayers (link). They agree that her statement was truthful.

And, see this:

It turns out as these ten key points confirm what I have argued all along - that Bill Ayers was responsible for the elevation of Obama to the Chicago Annenberg Challenge board and the New York Times reporting on this story actually supports my conclusion, though inadvertently.

BHO and Ayers also appeared at a far-left University of Chicago 11/20/1997 event about juvenile justice (link, copy here). The article also quotes Michelle Obama.

10/9/08: Obama lies again, with this being the latest explanation for his actions: "The gentleman in question, Bill Ayers, is a college professor, teaches education at the University of Illinois... That's how i met him -- working on a school reform project that was funded by an ambassador and very close friend of Ronald Reagan's" along with "a bunch of conservative businessmen and civic leaders... Ultimately, I ended up learning about the fact that he had engaged in this reprehensible act 40 years ago, but I was eight years old at the time and I assumed that he had been rehabilitated." (link) As indicated above, Obama continued working with him after 9/11/01, when even the most willingly blind person could see what Ayers was all about.

~ Who's helping the NYT spread their spin? ~

The people listed below all share one thing in common: they pretend that that NYT was actually trying to write an investigative report rather than a cover-up, and they all come to the conclusion that there's nothing there because the NYT says there's nothing there. Whether they actually believe that or whether they're just trying to sell the NYT's lies isn't clear.

* Steve Benen of Washington Monthly says the NYT "couldn't find any dirt", trying to make his readers think the NYT was looking for dirt rather than covering for BHO (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_10/015024.php). A comment I left was later deleted.

* Ben Smith from The Politico tries a similar technique: "though the Times has pinned down a couple of new details on the relationship, there's no real news, and the main new detail is exculpatory: A different Chicago figure picked Obama to chair an education fund. The conservative blog reaction to the story is outrage, as it has failed to turn up the secret Rosetta Stone that many seem to believe will reveal some deeper truth about Obama's politics." (politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1008/Republicans_again_reading_the_Times.html?showall)

* Juliet Eilperin of the Washington Post (voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html). She starts out with snark and a lie: "It turns out GOP vice presidential nominee does like the mainstream media after all -- at least, when it's publishing unflattering stories about Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama." The NYT article isn't "unflattering", it's an attempt at a cover-up.

She then spins the story the same way the BHO campaign does: "In fact, both a Washington Post article in April and today's New York Times piece revealed Obama and Ayers to have had only a casual association: the former radical hosted a coffee for Obama's first bid for state Senate, they served together on an educational charity board and both live in Chicago's Hyde Park."

The WaPo article she mentions is "Former '60s Radical Is Now Considered Mainstream in Chicago" by Peter Slevin (link). That WaPo article is even more of a cover-up than the one from the NYT; in fact, almost everything in there tries to portray Ayers as an upstanding member of his community, and the only link to Obama is this cozy scene: The two men served for three years on the board of the Woods Fund, an anti-poverty group. The board, which Obama has since left, was small and collegial, said chair Laura Washington, who served with them. It met four times a year for a half-day, mostly to approve grants, she said. The atmosphere was "friendly but businesslike." Needless to say, a real reporter would try to determine what Washington isn't saying, but that leaves Peter Slevin out.

* Michael Shaw of the Huffington Post - who concentrates on a lightweight interpretation of images - basically reads from the card he's been handed: "all kinds of long hashed-over and discredited innuendos... resuscitating feeble allegations -- all then discounted..." (huffingtonpost.com/michael-shaw/reading-the-pictures-emny_b_131855.html)

* Martina Stewart of CNN references the NYT article and then says: "Several other publications, including the Washington Post, Time magazine, the Chicago Sun-Times, The New Yorker and The New Republic, have debunked the idea that Obama and Ayers had a close relationship." (says) However, an earlier version of the article - the change not noted - had "The National Review" in place of "The New Republic". (link) Presumably that was just a mistake and not (like their other coverage) an attempt to deceive.

* Sockpuppets, various. BHO supporters are clogging up MSM comments boards with Winner-style attacks. See, for instance, the 04:15 PM comment from "John" and the 04:26 PM comment from "Larry" at latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2008/10/sarah-palinbill.html and the 8:06 PM comment from Luke2 and the 7:34 PM comment from seemstome at voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html. If I didn't think they were just citizens voicing their opinions I'd think they were actually paid workers for the Obama campaign.

* Izvestia, aka CNN, offers a "Fact Check" that discusses Sarah Palin's comment that BHO is "palling around with terrorists" (link). Obviously, Palin should have put it in the correct legalistic format: "in the recent past, Barack Obama has worked with and associated with known and unrepentant terrorists". If she had, CNN wouldn't have been able to pretend that her non-legalistic formation was binding: 'Verdict: False. There is no indication that Ayers and Obama are now "palling around," or that they have had an ongoing relationship in the past three years. Also, there is nothing to suggest that Ayers is now involved in terrorist activity or that other Obama associates are.' No really: they actually try to pretend that her imprecise wording is more important than BHO's past collaboration with and association with a terrorist.

* Todd Beeton links to both CNN and the NYT and continues the trends discussed above: mydd.com/story/2008/10/5/164214/299

* Obsequious toady, repeat liar, and supporter of illegal activity Joe Klein offers "Embarracuda", an obvious attempt to deceive (time-blog.com/swampland/2008/10/embarracuda.html). Needless to say, he downplays the Obama-Ayers connection and even works in a BHO talking point about how BHO was just a child when the Weather Underground were terrorizing the U.S.: Over the weekend, [Sarah Palin] picked up on an article in The New York Times, which essentially says that Barack Obama and the former terrorist Bill Ayers have crossed paths in Chicago, served on a couple of charitable boards together, but aren't particularly close. To Palin--or her scriptwriters--this means that Obama has been "palling around" with terrorists. Now, I wish Ayers had done some serious jail time; he certainly needed to pay some penance for his youthful criminality--even if most people in Chicago, including the mayor, have decided that he has something of value to say about education. But I can also understand how Obama, who was a child when Ayers was cutting his idiot swath, would not quite understand the enormity of the professor's background...

* Scott Conroy of CBS News offers "Lagging In The Polls, Palin Shifts To Fear Tactics" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml), which follows 10/4's equally biased "Palin Says She Wants To Talk About Issues, Adds That Obama Pals With A Terrorist" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml). In the first article he says: '[Palin] said [Obama and Ayers] had a relationship akin to being "pals," even though the Associated Press and many other news outlets have concluded that Obama and Ayers' relationship added up to far less than a close friendship.' Needless to say, that's extremely disingenuous.

* Dana Milbank of the Washington Post.

10/6/08 UPDATE: The latest lie from the BHO campaign is that BHO had little knowledge of the radical past of Ayers and the Weatherman group. This was presented by David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs (thepage.time.com/mccain-campaign-release-on-obama-and-ayers); see Joe Klein retailing their lie above.

Steve Benen/Washington Monthly continues proud tradition of deleting comments - 09/23/08

During the Kevin Drum years at Washington Monthly, several of my on-topic, non-abusive comments were deleted. As pointed out here a few times, that means you can't trust anything you read there: everything has to be double-checked because they're willing to delete fact-checking by their readers. (I also noted that many of their old pages are full of spam, and if you link to those pages it might harm your search engine ranking.)

Now, Steve Benen continues that fine WM tradition. The following comment I left on washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_09/014836.php is no longer there. Here it is, as posted:
The latest BHO lie appears to be that McCain only supports "reform" for the Irish, when - just like Bush, the MexicanGovernment, and BHO - he wants it for almost everyone.

You can't trust those like Benen who try to mislead you about issues like this.
That's a reference to this sentence from the roundup at that WM page:
McCain wants a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants ... from Ireland.
It also references Benen's habit of trying to pretend that McCain has flip-flopped on amnesty.

John McCain ad was right and Barack Obama, MSM misled about BHO's kindergartener sex education bill - 09/16/08

Earlier this month the John McCain campaign released an ad (link, video link) saying in part:
"Obama's one accomplishment?

Legislation to teach "comprehensive sex education" to kindergartners.

Learning about sex before learning to read?

Barack Obama.
This has led to a wide variety of BHO supporters - specifically those in the MSM - calling McCain a liar. To a certain extent, they have somewhat of a point: the bill might not be an "accomplishment" for BHO since he was just a supporter and not a co-sponsor and since it never passed. And, the McCain campaign might not have correctly contextualized some of the other quotes they provide in the ad relating to BHO's educational plans.

However, their complaints don't usually involve those points but instead revolve around the middle sentences quoted above; they try to pretend that kindergarteners were just covered by the bill in order to prevent abuse when in fact the bill was much more far-reaching than BHO and his helpers would have you believe. For an example of what Obama would have you believe, see this or this quote from campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki (link):
"Barack Obama supports sensible, community-driven education for children because, among other things, he believes it could help protect them from pedophiles. A child's knowledge of the difference between appropriate and inappropriate touching is crucial to keeping them safe from predators."
Now, for the truth about the bill, read this:
Within moments of the ad's appearance, the Obama campaign called it "shameful and downright perverse." The legislation in question, a bill [Senate Bill 99] in the Illinois State Senate that was supported but not sponsored by Obama, was, according to Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton, "written to protect young children from sexual predators" and had nothing to do with comprehensive sex education for kindergartners...

Newspaper, magazine, and television commentators quickly piled on. "The kindergarten ad flat-out lies," wrote the New York Times, arguing that "at most, kindergarteners were to be taught the dangers of sexual predators." The Washington Post wrote that "McCain's 'Education' Spot is Dishonest, Deceptive." And in a column in The Hill, the influential blogger Josh Marshall called the sex-education spot "a rancid, race-baiting ad based on [a] lie. Willie Horton looks mild by comparison."
Read the rest, which includes a discussion of how what was originally meant for those in the sixth grade and up was changed to everyone in K-12 because urban areas might require different topics to be covered than more rural areas. The article also includes Byron York trying to get in touch with three of the four original sponsors and for some unknown reason or other not getting his calls returned. Only one of the four spoke with him about the bill:
After we discussed other aspects of the bill, I told [original co-sponsor state senator Iris Martinez] that reading the bill, I just didn't see it as being exclusively, or even mostly, about inappropriate touching. "I didn't see it that way, either," Martinez said. "It's just more information about a whole variety of things that have to go into a sex education class, the things that are outdated that you want to amend with things that are much more current."

So, I asked, you didn't see it specifically as being about inappropriate touching?

"Absolutely not."
That doesn't mean that the parts involving kindergarteners wouldn't be restricted to just inappropriate touching. However, the age range was lowered specifically to allow different school districts to offer teaching appropriate to their areas, and thus those in lower grades could be taught much more than BHO is letting on. For a discussion of that, see this or this.

A list of just some of those who've helped Barack Obama hide the truth about the bill is in the extended entry:



* Adam Nagourney and Jeff Zeleny of the New York Times say the ad "misleadingly accused Obama of endorsing sex education for kindergarten students" (link)

* A New York Times editorial falsely states "At most, kindergarteners were to be taught the dangers of sexual predators." (link) What they could have been taught was left up to the localities.

* Following the party line boilerplate, Paul Krugman says 'In reality, he supported legislation calling for "age and developmentally appropriate education"; in the case of young children, that would have meant guidance to help them avoid sexual predators.'

* Larry Rohter of the New York Times pretends the ad was implying that "comprehensive" meant that kindergarteners would receive the information as high school students; he's probably the only person coming to that conclusion. He also takes Obama's word for his understanding of the bill rather than discussing what the bill actually says and what others intended by it (link).

* Emi Kolawole of FactCheck correctly points out some of the minor errors in the ad, but says 'It's true that the phrase "comprehensive sex education" appeared in the bill, but little else in McCain's claim is accurate.' (link)

* Michael Scherer of Time says "[t]he sex-education bill in question had called only for age-appropriate instruction..."

* Brave New Films promotes a Planned Parenthood ad (alternet.org/blogs/video/98697/ planned_parenthood_rips_into_mccain_for_sex-ed_smear_campaign): 'In an ad, they say that Obama was helping children protect themselves from sex offenders, while McCain seemingly doesn't care.'

* Nedra Pickler and Charles Babbington of the Associated Press claim that the ad "misrepresent[ed] [BHO's] position on sex education for kindergartners." (link). That's not completely inaccurate, but it fails to note that BHO either hasn't read, hasn't understood, or is misrepresenting the bill.

* Joe Garofali of the San Francisco Chronicle falsely states 'Obama doesn't support explicit sex education for kindergarteners. The bill -- which never was passed out of the Illinois legislature --included teaching "age-appropriate sex education" -- you know, what is inappropriate touching, that sort of stuff'. (link)

* Richard Cohen offered "The Ugly New McCain" (link) and called the ad a "lie". That referenced a McCain appearance on The View (!) where Joy Behar called it a lie as well.

* "Hilzoy" of the Washington Monthly pretends it was just about inappropriate touching (link).

* Joe Sudbay tries to pretend it was just about preventing abuse (americablog.com/2008/09/mccain-got-nasty-defending-his-negative.html)

* Democratic consultant Mark Mellman says "There is not an iota of reality in McCain's attack on Obama's supporting comprehensive sex education for kindergartners. As we all know, he voted to help children avoid sexual predators."

* A Tampa Bay Tribune editorial says 'The facts: Obama, while a state lawmaker in Illinois, supported a measure to provide older students with age and developmentally appropriate sex education. Younger children, such as those kindergarten-age, would be taught "age-appropriate" things such as how to protect themselves from sexual predators.'

* A Minneapolis Star-Tribune editorial says "There is no evidence that Obama supported explicit sex education in kindergarten, as a McCain ad implied."

* Not even understanding BHO talking points, Cox Newspapers columnist Tom Teepen says 'No, as an Illinois state legislator Obama did not push for "comprehensive sex education" for kindergarteners. He supported a proposal for age appropriate sex education -- which, for kindergarteners, would have meant only making them aware of the possibility of sex abuse and teaching them means to counter it.'

UPDATE:
* Darrell West from the Brookings Institution falsely states "The McCain campaign ran another spot erroneously claiming Obama favored comprehensive sex education for kindergarteners." (link)

* It's an Anderson Cooper from CNN and "FactCheck" two-fer. CNN aired a "Fact Checking" episode that hewed to the party line (link):
[RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT]: Did Obama want to teach sex education to kindergartners? Not really. The programming question was intended to teach kids how to avoid sexual predators, says the nonpartisan group FactCheck.org.

VIVECA NOVAK, FACTCHECK.ORG: What he wanted to do was increase the range of some -- some sort of sex education, K-12. But the kind of thing he was interested in having kids at a young age learn about was inappropriate sexual advances that might be made against them.
What BHO says he wants and what was in the bill he voted for are, of course, two entirely different things.

Washington Post: America's finest source for bad reporting (Palin "slashed" funds story) - 09/02/08

The Washington Post recently published a blog post about Sarah Palin (in their words) "slash[ing]" funds to a non-profit group. Except, what they got from the state of Alaska alone was over three times what they got from all government sources combined in 2006. Let's take a look at the WaPo's "downstream", the three-eyed fish who gobble up what the WaPo sludges out.

Kevin Drum/Washington Monthly deletes yet another comment (Obama's Global Poverty Act) - 08/06/08

Kevin Drum obviously doesn't want his readers to know how much of a hack he is, since either he or someone else at Washington Monthly keep deleting comments from me and apparently from others as well.

Washington Monthly deletes yet another comment, again - 05/25/08

Washington Monthly has a habit of deleting comments I (and apparently others) leave there. Kevin Drum is apparently on vacation so I don't know whether he popped in just to delete the comment I left earlier today on this thread:
washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_05/013790.php.

Kevin Drum/Washington Monthly deletes yet another comment - 03/25/08

Kevin Drum and/or the Washington Monthly have a habit of deleting perfectly reasonable comments; because of that you can't trust anything you read there. Comments sections serve as a form of check on the blogger or reporter; if they make a mistake someone will probably come along to point it out. If - like Kevin Drum and/or WM - they start deleting comments you never know what's missing, and it might be a comment offering a correction. So, every single thing he writes has to be double-checked before relying on it.

Washington Monthly desperate enough to edit comments without noting they were edited - 03/18/07

[Update here]

Washington Monthly ("WM"; Kevin Drum/Political Animal, washingtonmonthly. com) used to have an open commenting policy, and I've been posting the occasional and almost always critical comment at that site since Drum moved there and at his previous location (calpundit.com) since 2002 or 2003.

WM recently changed to some form of post-moderation of comments. Unlike almost everyone else who uses moderation, that includes the sleazy and underhanded tactic of editing comments without noting that they've been edited. In particular, adding extra characters to some URLs left in messages rendering them inoperable.

This has happened to me at least three times, once in January [1], again in February [2] and the second time earlier today (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2007_03/010948.php), when a space character was inserted into a URL [3] in my comment (search for "TLB"), causing that link to generate a 404 (file not found message) and causing me to have to add a redirect rule into my .htaccess file. The comment is below. [4]

I don't know whether it's Kevin Drum or someone else who edits these comments, but Drum certainly knows about it. After the second incident I wrote him regarding it and he said it "probably" wouldn't happen again. He also mentioned that the person who did it may have been "annoyed"; whether he was refering to himself or someone else wasn't clear. He didn't raise any issues with the contents of any comments I left there. Note also that in December a comment I left there was deleted entirely.

Note also that two other URLs left in the comments on the latest thread were not modified, one to this page and another to this: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barnett_Slepian

Clearly, as with those sites that have deleted comments I left or banned me entirely, they realize they don't have an argument and are forced to resort to playing sleazy games.

On the technical side of things, WM now uses the nofollow tag, meaning that all those who help WM create a "community" are doing so for free. Their older entries are clogged with spammm (example: washingtonmonthly. com/mt/mt-comments.cgi?entry_id=8000). Meaning that they penalize legitimate commenters at the same time as they probably turn up in search results for spammmmy terms and generate click-through traffic for those spammmers. Anyone who links to their entries is linking to pages filled with spammm links and keywords.

On the wider issue, I was banned from RedState despite having posted almost 75 diary entries there over a one and a half year period. I've also been banned from ThinkProgress and QandO and I was banned from DailyKos back when he was just a solo blogger. And, I've had one or more comments deleted from MyDD (2), Think Progress, Brad DeLong, the New Haven Independent, Brothers Judd, the Arkansas Family Coalition, Media Matters for America (2, 3), John Kerry's blog, and, last but not least Blogs For Bush (example 1, 2). Obviously I'm doing something right.

~~~~~~~~ FOOTNOTES ~~~~~~~~

[1] In January a comment I left at washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2007_01/010513.php had the link in the following converted into gibberish:
Arnold is/was taking advice from someone linked to the MexicanGovernment. Details here. I don't expect Kevin Drum to understand this, but perhaps he should evaluate who Arnie is linked to, who he's being advised by, and who his plans will ultimately benefit before jumping on board.
[2] In February a comment I left at washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2007_02/010675.php had a link left in a comment changed from "lonewacko.com" to "lonewdfhsdfhaacko.com".

[3] The link http://24ahead.com/blog/archives/005911.html was changed to have a space character before the period.

[4]
I agree with our host about the 'hearts and minds' aspect, but he seems to have left a few things out of the equation. Many of those on the far-left think the U.S. is a bigger terrorist than, you know, the terrorists. Moderate Democrats don't exactly seem to be doing their part to reign in people like that.

On the wider issue, both the GOP and Dem leaderships are willing to put the U.S. at great risk out of fear of alienating their respective interest groups.

Recall that ChuckieSchumer pulled a web video about BorderControl simply because one or two Hispanic groups sent out press releases. Rather than taking them on, he capitulated. And, here's something most probably don't know either: HezbollahTerrrorists have infiltrated the U.S. over our porous SouthernBorder. That happened on Bush's watch, but you haven't heard any Democrats speak out about it.

Perhaps the GOP leadership should put the U.S. CofC on hold and think about protecting the U.S. And, perhaps the Dems should put the NationalCouncilofTheRace on hold and think about the same duty.

Jon Vessey, crops rotting in the fields, and pro-illegal immigration propaganda - 12/05/05

Jon Vessey is a California grower who's been quoted in a few recent articles about how crops will rot in the fields unless growers get more cheap labor to pick it. (UPDATE: see crops rotting in the fields).

On 11/21, the WaPo featured him in "Shortage of Immigrant Workers Alarms Growers in West" (link), and today the Los Angeles Times features him in "Picking a Battle Over Shortage of Farmworkers" (link). And, he was apparently also featured saying similar things in Copley News Service and USA Today. And, the CSM article (link) I discussed in "America's produce industry is facing a crisis" featured another member of the Vessey clan.

However, there appears to be quite a bit more to this story: Jon Vessey is on the Board of Directors of the Western Growers Association (source, cache). And, various Vesseys have been quote sources for decades (PDF file).

And, neither the LAT, nor the WaPo, nor the CSM noted this rather important connection. In fact, here's how the WaPo handled it:
"Today I have approximately 290 people working in the field," Jon Vessey said recently. Vessey runs an 8,000-acre winter vegetable farm with his son, Jack, near El Centro, Calif. "I should have 400, and for the harvest I need 1,100. . . . There's a disaster coming."

The Western Growers Association, which represents 3,000 farmers, is lobbying the Bush administration to make it easier for farmers to tap the labor pool just below the border.
I guess they meant to mention that there's a link between the two paragraphs, but an editor took that out. Or something like that.

Note also that left-wing bloggers fell for this too: here (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2005_12/007700.php), here (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2005_11/007643.php), here (brothersjudd. com/blog/archives/2005/12/calling_all_nat.html).

Contact the CSM here, and send emails to these: readers.Rep *at* latimes.com and ombudsman * at* washpost.com.

UPDATE: A commentor at the first PA thread says this unverified bit:
It's going back to 1982, but a leopard does not change its spots. Jon Vessey is the CEO of Vessey & Co. which lost a case in that year filed by the UFW. The Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) found that the respondents (Vessey, Maggio, ...) had bargained in bad faith with the union regarding the contract for lettuce pickers. Remember the iceberg lettuce boycott? The findings of the ALRB are available [in this PDF file].

Arianna Huffington and Baby Blumenthal - 10/01/05

Did you think the low-point of Huffington Post came when Randall Robinson uttered these memorable words?

It is reported that black hurricane victims in New Orleans have begun eating corpses to survive.

Well, you're only part right. While it's extremely difficult to find an actual low point of the sexy Greek goddess' site, a contender must be Max Blumenthal - the son of Sid Blumenthal - called by Marc Cooper a "featherweight tyro and designated puncher for enraged but impotent Democrats" here.

There's even a direct connection between Max and Randy. Shortly after the cannibalism charge, Sid Jr. offered "The Right Plays the Race-Card, Randall Robinson Unwittingly Indulges Them". Max stepped in as a bit of a White Savior, trying to offer Randy a lesson.

Obviously, almost everyone didn't believe Robinson's tasty charge; it didn't confirm our hidden suspicions about "those people." It simply provided yet another chance to laugh at Arianna and her crew.

Continuing his winning streak, Max now offers us "Bill Bennett, White Savior". He educates us about "closet racists" and "their codes", and diagnoses Bennett as being a "White Savior". Has the HuffPost no shame, have they no shame?

From young Max's bio:

Max Blumenthal is a Nation Institute Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow whose work regularly appears in the Nation. He has also written for The American Prospect, Salon.com, and the Washington Monthly. He received the Online Journalism Award for best independent feature in 2003 from the Online Journalism Association and the University of Southern California's Annenberg School of Communications. He is a Research Fellow at Media Matters for America.