LiberalViewer Tackles “Citizens United v. FEC”

LiberalViewer of YouTube attempts to set the record straight on mischaracterizations of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in “Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.”

It appears based on watching this video that the ruling is greatly misunderstood by both sides and I myself am inspired to try and read the whole 180+ page Opinion of the Court.

I am in no way advocating the chilling of free speech by value of it simply coming from a corporation or union.

It is a falsehood to state that this ruling allows for “unlimited contributions to political candidates” and also a point that is not within the primary argument against this ruling, as it did not effect those existing limitations.

I believe, personally, that the argument made that this will benefit non-profit advocacy organizations over private sector special interests has some serious flaws in it, while it is not altogether untrue.

It’s true that some of the confusing regulations surrounding political advocacy have been discarded in this recent decision, but it is the structure and measure of what they have done that is so reprehensible.

Were it to be the case that a corporation had to declare their logo and “I Support This Ad” with the CEO standing there; then this decision would be far different in implications to our political process.

This logic that major multinational corporations will for some reason “not go there” with political issues is true to a certain extent but it precludes the simple truth that when seeing itself as threatened, as the insurance companies did the early days of the Health Care Debate, they will spend whatever they can as fast as they can to flood us with … media. Media like television ads.

How quickly we forget as a nation, as a people, that Sen. John Kerry was literally “slimed” out of his equal opportunity at the democratic process in a bid for president no less by what we now call “swing voting” but if you track this story out it was a bunch of frauds who demeaned their personal character in a outright smear campaign. One of them lives right here in Santa Cruz, California and just like the Bush administration itself they are taking no responsibility for this in public.

How easy it will be now for a nameless silent corporate partner to just bankroll a bunch of TV ads either pro or con for a candidate that had policies that just might ask them to give a little back after they take so much from the environment, for instance. If understand that McDonald’s is Pro-McCain, just as a random example, then many of my concerns go away. But as it stands the Sierra Club, the NRA and the example of the video clip Microsoft could all wildly flood a campaign with media while grassroots money and dedicated social advocates of any position would be overshadowed.

Also this argument that money doesn’t win elections is also partly false. Money is not enough, as the examples of Ross Perot and Mitt Romney illustrate, but the 2008 Campaign for the White House was in part decided on the dollars and cents. Of course you need the solid candidate, as the Democrats held with Obama, to seal the deal but my studies in Political Science completely disagree with the scoffing of this notion of looking at the financial impact and earnings to get the best picture.

As I stated before, I believe I may have to read this entire decision before I am totally satisfied I understand it fully.

For now, I am strongly standing with the words of President Obama in his State of the Union address calling this decision a means by which we will “open the floodgates” to foreign special interests and corporate lobbyist influence over the actual results of our elections themselves.

I feel both the SCOTUS and perhaps LiberalViewer as well have concerned themselves too much with entities that deserve very little concern or express protections of the court while neglecting to see the ramifications of said decision on the people that truly represent democracy at it’s core.

To put it plainly: this appears a “open door” policy in terms of slash-and-burn negative political ads at the end of a campaign cycle to force a candidate to lose based on hyperbole, as we have seen before in politics. Slime works, and I as I understand it the SCOTUS just ruled in favor of slime in our elections.

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UPDATE!

Russ Feingold at CounterPunch.org explains what Sam Donaldson was speaking about that I referred to as “inaccurate” in the above piece.

I was under the impression that he was saying that Soft Money limits are now gone under this ruling but in fact it he was speaking to the issue of spending directly out of the treasury without limit.

***Thanks to Paul J. Rourke for bringing this to my attention and providing the link.

Repost: Loyal Opposition No More

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For many years I have felt that for all our disagreements between liberal and conservative individuals in the U.S., there was a shared position by both sides.
A loyal opposition to the opposition, if you will.
For the time being, as since the election of Democratic President Barack Obama, I believe the majority of the conservatives of America have thrown down this national system of civil loyalty in politics in place of a pure obstructionist agenda.
The Party of “No!” is not conservative, nor liberal, it is pure nihilism in place of understanding.
I have not heard any amount of logical rebuttal to an Obama Policy or policy proposal, except in very rare cases.
I find I cannot listen to the standard bearers of GOP right-wing radio these days. Like most people I have my “hang-ups.”
Dismissive attitudes, a complete lack of humility and screaming people down end up on my list.
Every time I have been listening to conservative talk radio, or GOP responses, since the election of Barack Obama I am disgusted by the complete lack of integrity and grace in politics. Every word a smear, every point a spin.
Reducing everything down to simply “look at who is doing the name-calling” is not the issue. Though it is important thing to avoid name-calling as much as possible.
Not sticking to the facts about our democratic representatives and our recent national historical facts is unpatriotic.
I wish it were not so, and no group can claim to innocent of some form of vitriol in these times. But if something I say amounts to “name-calling” then I’m afraid it must be so. But understand I don’t say such things in a state of glee as we see from others screaming rational people down.
I find it offensive that in a matter of weeks all our politics have reduced to childishness and fear-mongering about the government.
Instead of having an actual political dialogue they insist on presenting “vague-facts” along with connect-the-dots logic, which is simply dirty pool politics.

James O’Keefe: The ACORN Slander Artist

There are four vicious slanderers that have promoted a smear campaign on a community organization group using so-called “investigative journalism” recently.

In this age of misreported facts and “gotcha-journalism” those who claim to hold the truth dear and have a love for American democracy would do well to take note of these modern propagandists and spreaders of lies.

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1. James O’Keefe III

2. Hannah Giles

3. Andrew Breitbart

4. Mike Flynn

James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles have both lied on the air of the FOX News show “Hannity” regarding the issue of being asked to leave from ACORN offices in the process of their film making.

Both of these slander artists have received training from the same training organization that Ann Coulter attended. They are skilled at crafting a message to be as provocative as possible, but not by any means accurate or provable.

Katherine Conway Russel, Office Director of ACORN Housing Corp. Philadelphia, explains what her group actually does and what a vital role they can serve in the community.

The Philadelphia ACORN office is on record as filing a police report against O’Keefe and Giles for misrepresenting themselves and making illegal requests.

O’KEEFE: “In none of the facilities — none of the facilities kicked us out. That’s a lie.”

BREITBART: “There’s no place, as ACORN tried to state, that kicked them out based upon the premise that they were doing something nefarious.”

Both Breitbart and O’Keefe reveal in their quotes that they have no credibility behind their case. They claim ACORN is a “criminal organization” but engaged in illegal videotaping to produce these videos and have made baseless slanders against ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis even as the people in question have been fired for their actions caught on tape.

Were it the goal of these people to see quality, ethical journalism they would not misrepresent themselves nor place a blanket charge of criminality to the entire organization by value of the misdeeds of a few.

These slander artists are clearly seeking to destroy an organization based on political and possibly racial motives, and are clearly not invested in uncovering malpractice for the betterment of the community.

O’Keefe has been asked to leave the Leadership Institute after taping phone calls with Planned Parenthood representatives in which he made the proposition of a possible donation under the condition the money would go toward an abortion of a black child.

James O’Keefe has expressly chosen to target a group that helps mainly impoverished blacks living in the inner-city. He has a record of creating disgusting racial sentiments in his own mind and then imposing that racist view to any person unlucky enough to answer his phone call. There is no small amount of evidence to assume that O’Keefe harbors ill will toward African-Americans.

It is also very likely that this story has been picked up but poorly reported on by certain media figures because of a strong desire to connect President Barack Obama with ACORN’s problems.

If these same newsmedia-types were to convey that the credibility of these film makers is below even the lowest measuring bar I might not call them biased, but to me it just proves once more that bias against the truth is one of the strongest factors present in the news media today.

ACORN is currently suing Breitbart and O’Keefe for illegally videotaping their offices in Maryland.

One of the only people to speak any amount of truth on the matter has been Joe Conason of Salon.

Joe Conason quite clearly lays out that this has been exaggerated from the very beginning, that ACORN helps struggling families, and stating the fact that ACORN has never been found guilty of any voter registration fraud.

Andrew Breitbart, on the other hand, produced a piece on RealClearPolitics that touts the entire slander crusade as courageous. Breitbart is quite clear that he stands with the McCarthyist tactics involved in the Van Jones resignation.

I see the same anti-American tactics at play in this un-Christian and ungodly campaign against minorities and against all of the poor. These people care nothing for the hard facts, and only care to paint others with a brush of guilt by association.

If one person is guilty of something in an ACORN office, they all are guilty in all ACORN offices. Evidence and solid proof be damned!

There is a strong value in good investigative journalism, but no value in anti-minority slander campaigns.

The people in the videos were dismissed and this in itself was a small service to ACORN, however the purpose of the video series was never to improve ACORN but rather to destroy it. Rather than balancing the matter with facts and open disclosure of the footage, these slander artists have elected to lie about the number of times they were asked to leave. This in itself calls to question if they have any desire to cover the story or if they merely wish to present this as irrefutable case of corruption regardless of solid facts.

The American Media also failed utterly to convey this story in full.

Jon Stewart of The Daily Show jumped on board the ACORN smash-wagon.

The Washington Post has ignored the fact that O’Keefe and Giles previously claimed they were never turned away from any office.

FOX News (to my knowledge) has made no effort to obtain the police report, in the procession of CNN, to refute the on-air claim that they were never asked to leave any ACORN office.

And I won’t even get into the matter of the numerous outright lies told on the radio.

I believe this story is an excellent example of how easy it is to besmirch and publicly defame a group.

On that topic, the group Live Action that O’Keefe belongs to is a corrupt organization that uses racial entrapment to levee false claims against innocent citizens. This possibly criminal organization apparently promotes illegal videotaping, dishonest conduct when speaking with the press and engages in false advertising of it’s purposes and functions.

This group is dangerous to our country, dangerous to our communities and dangerous to our democracy. Live Action films is an agent of propaganda and an actor in baseless public defamation.

James O’Keefe, Hannah Giles, Mike Flynn and Andrew Breitbart are currently invested in actions aimed against the well being of the community and against the well being of the poor.

I cannot remain silent as this group of vile individuals wage war against the needy and seek to destroy a community-based group that lends aid to others, rather than seeking to improve it.

Sara Palin Quits Her Job

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Former Republican Vice-Presidential candidate, and soon to be former Governor of Alaska, Sara Palin has decided to walk away from her responsibilities as governor as well as her obligations to those who voted her into office.

Whatever her reasons may be she is electing to be extremely vague and elusive, leaving the speculation running wild. It’s possible the ethics probes are the reason. It’s possible she is fed up with political partisan bickering and propagandizing.

Whatever the reason the fact remains that this representative is walking away from her responsibilities and setting a terrible example to the nation in terms of governorship.

Gov. Sanford and His Many Mistresses

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“It‘s a love story. A tragic one, a forbidden one ..”

Mark Sanford expressed in a recent interview that he felt that his Argentine mistress was his ’soul mate’ and noted a sense of mortality surrounding his decision to commit adultery on his wife. But in the same interview he revealed that this was not his only mistress but was the only woman other than his wife in which he engaged in intercourse with.

To me this notion of a fleeting sense of your own morality that the governor eluded to would not be any sort of excuse to commit adultery but rather a reason to strongly consider divorce and pursue a new life with this newfound ‘soul mate’ in Argentina. Even more so if he was violating his marriage vows with other women already.

More than anything else Governor Mark Sanford proved today to the discerning public that he holds no regard whatsoever for his wife and his marriage.

Be it maintaining his public imagine and political position or simply caring more for his carnal desires than he does for his commitment to his wife.

In regards to the resignation of Mark Sanford from office I have a neutral opinion. If the people of South Carolina believe he should do this, then he is obliged to do so immediately. Otherwise I think the entire scandal simply goes to character.

The character of Governor Mark Sanford is clear to any who care to know.

What irritates me is the likes of Lindsey Graham coming forth to declare Mark Sanford as ‘only human’ in an attempt to elevate the character of the governor for what I believe are purely political motives.

The stain of poor character sheds itself only to a small degree to The Republican Party. Yet their representatives insist on standing up for a man who pursued his ‘forbidden love’ in place of his marriage at the cost to his family and his character in the public arena.

This man is a disgrace and I send my personal condolences to his wife and his children.

 

 

How Responsible is O’Reilly in Tiller’s Murder?

Crooks & Liars : Bill O’Reilly uses Private Long’s murder to try and justify his demonization of Dr. Tiller by John Amato

Raw Replay : Howard Kurtz excuses Bill O’Reilly’s incitement of violence against George Tiller by David Edwards

In terms of criminal responsibility to Bill O’Reilly or FOX Broadcasting in the murder of Dr. George Tiller, I can see none.

In terms of moral and civic responsibility, I see plenty. I believe it to a shameful state of affairs in America today that I am a ‘far left’ blogger for demanding responsible broadcasting and moral standards in addressing social issues like abortion and women’s reproductive health.

The crazies will do what they do.

Bill O’Reilly is not responsible when a lunatic reads his book and murders fourteen people in a church, nor is he responsible when a man watches his broadcasts and goes out and kills a man over it. In a legal sense this is true. In a moral sense Bill O’Reilly has blood on his hands for passing along biased and jaded perspectives on liberalism in America and his outrageously dangerous and slanderous coverage of Dr. Tiller.

The responsibility of a broadcaster is vapid in terms of serious social issues and FOX Cable News, not in anyway exclusive to The O’Reilly Factor.

Just tonight Geraldo Rivera made insinuations of vigilante violence against a child molester in Oklahoma in the course of denouncing vigilante violence himself.

The fact remains that the both the network and the broadcasters themselves have a responsibility to the public they serve to protect the lives of all citizens and protect the due process of law.

By calling Dr. Tiller a ‘killer’ repeatedly on the air Bill O’Reilly risked inciting violence.

By vaguely insinuating that the Oklahoma child molester might be killed and have his body dumped on the side of the road Geraldo Rivera risked inciting violence.

The responsibility to the community for news broadcasting that does not risk the incitement of violence in the nation is fundamental to our domestic security as a nation.

This entire issue has absolutely nothing to do with an individual political agenda on my accord and I am willing to retract my provocative statements in regards to Mr. O’Reilly provided he states clearly to the public that he will no longer use his media platform to play dangerous games with people’s lives and then follows through on this promise.

Mine is a cry for an end to irresponsible broadcasting coming from FOX News.

For whatever failures of bias to found on vast quantity both on MSNBC and FOX, there is only one network inciting violence and using radical right wing propaganda to do more than simply share an alternative perspective. Quite often the network is used as an agent for unscrupulous pundits to gamble with the safety of physicians and the liberal population of America.

Ultimately, I believe these people have become drunk off their own power and will never admit their own misdeeds let alone their own inability to recognize their contributions to a climate of violence in America.

As long as the public continues to support their ‘crusades’ they will remained deluded and ignorant to the harm they cause in their wake. When the veil of public approval is lifted it becomes clear that these men will say anything to get ratings and if that means risking inciting violence, then so be it.

Read Some News & Instantly Talk About It!

1.uk-internet-blog-traffic-reaches-all-time-high-chart_1 7-Habits-InternetIn my opinion, all these news-blogging websites are the same thing wrapped up in a different package. This age of faster and faster news-cycles combining with worldwide communications expanding to new heights has spawned a new phenomena of people like myself feeling the need to respond to every single news story in all the world.

Then expound upon some line of thought in some blog and someone comments-back: “Keep it short and sweet.” Sometimes there is none of that. Sometimes I run out anything and we end up with the new and famous and amazing micro-blogging (Tweet)!

The FOX Nation

The ‘protectors’ of the freedom of speech and ’balanced’ media have opened up a talking-back-at-you website. They let my liberal stuff through just like anyone else.

Huffington Post

This site has morphed from comment moderation taken to new tyrannical heights and has landed right back where all the internet is, sanity. Though I’ll the first to admit that almost every post on the website is written by a liberal.

The Guardian

I don’t live in the UK but this news-site has always caught my eye. I just think they have better articles than a lot of American media to discuss or reference.

Your Blog

I might have promoted you and you never knew it. I try and point out anything I think is great in both credible source and just pure internet source. If you have a blog I am the one who just randomly spread it around on Facebook or maybe Stumble.

YouTube Threads

I have no idea why people do this but YouTube comment threads often become beyond the limits of sanity in terms of length, and the dialogue goes beyond any measure of civility in about 90% of the cases. I can barely ever help myself, I’ve allowed myself to childish and tawdry while speaking to vile and hostile people. If you like car-crashes and Jerry Springer … you might want to just read the comments under a video without even bothering with whatever the original post was.

It’s just my point of view.

That it all fits in the same pale. One big not-so happy family of internet traffic.

The only credibility on most internet posting is attached to the credibility of the domain combined with the author. I’ll listen to anybody, but I’m not about to try and attach any level of credibility to myself. This all just my opinion. But I think some certain few out there somehow manage to get opinion and real news confused in all the commotion of the New Media.