My media weekend

Jeff Golden

Picture 11 Picture 12 Saturday night, 8:30pm:  listening with headphones on the treadmill at my gym to Glenn Beck (okay, I need some slack here: the treadmill is spectacularly boring, I don't have an Ipod and Medford-area Saturday night radio sucks).  He spends an hour raging on the incalculably evil danger of Van Jones (appointed last spring to be President O's special adviser on Green Jobs).  "Don't you understand, people?  We have the most vile and perverted kind of Marxist, someone who undeniably wants to destroy our way of life, whispering as we speak into Obama's ear!"  His evidence: Jones' signature on a petition saying there are grave unanswered questions about 9-11 and some appearance that the W administration let it happen, and  a series of sound bites from past Jones speeches.  These, delivered in a dramatic black-preacher cadence that makes some whites nervous regardless of content, say that  (1) We have to do more than change energy sources to set this country right ("We're not gonna put a new battery into a broken system, we have to change the whole thing!")  (2) Native Americans got screwed as Anglos settled the west, and deserve the royalties that will come their way from alternative energy development on reservation lands that were too hot and windy for the Anglos' taste (3) many immigrants are despised and kicked around while they're doing essential work for us.

Beck gets apoplectic about all of this:  we are sitting back, he says, and watching the destruction of this country.  When will we WAKE UP??!!??!!

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Sunday morning, 6:30am:  I wake up and turn the radio on to NPR's Morning Edition Sunday.  The first headline is that Van Jones has resigned.

So: does Glenn Beck now have veto authority over who helps make national policy?  And,  while we're at it, when W's top people were caught redhanded committing crimes (as opposed to making candid unguarded remarks that many Americans actually agree with), did he tell or allow them to step down, or did he stand behimd them with loyalty and conviction until (except in the case of Alberto Gonzales) the heat passed over?

Has open season just been declared on the few progressives who remain in this Administration?

Jeff Golden is the author of Forest Blood, As If We Were Grownups, and the novel Unafraid (with excerpts available at www.unafraidthebook.com).

 

Comments

  • (Show?)

    Well...

    Once again the left has utterly failed to mount a defense against their own.

    Van Jones was totally rolled.

  • van jones (unverified)
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    use spell check- douche!

  • (Show?)

    van, use grammar & punctuation check.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    I was hoping Van Jones would hang in there, so that we would have a constant reminder of the kind of off the chart lefties that Obama surrounds himself with.

    The bigger story here is that a close adviser of the President has resigned , and the Establishment Media have no clue why because they had refused to run stories detailing Jones' weird views.

    How can a person like Jones gain the position that he did and the Establishment Media never examine who he is or what he believes?

    Why does the Establishment Media give a blank check to Democratic Presidents?

  • Rex Tugwell (unverified)
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    Carla, Carla, Carla... one of your own, really? That guy is whack.

  • (Show?)

    Oh please, Rex. As if Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity need an excuse to be racist pigs.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Rex, any relation to the Tugwell in the FDR biography I just finished reading?

  • (Show?)

    Btw...these assholes at FOX won't stop at Jones. They've got the next round in their sights because they've seen the blood in the water.

    Mark Lloyd, Harold Koh, Cass Sunstein, John Holdren and Carol Browner...they're on deck.

    Perhaps when Beck is finished "hating the 9/11 families" he'll have time to tamp down the rest of the people on his list.

    What happened to Jones was disgusting. The fact that Republican elected officials can babble on about how President Obama wants to set terrorists loose in the US or that he plans to use his health care plan to off old people is perfectly acceptable ..but Van Jones is apparently just a bridge too far, eh?

    Where's the outrage on Bob McDonnell and his anti-women crazy rantings from the thesis he wrote? Or is that okay because he's now decided he's evolved past the 17th Century..even though there's plenty to indicate he'd still govern like it's 1689?

    The bullshit is fast and thick now.

  • Rex Tugwell (unverified)
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    Yes LT. Rexford Guy Tugwell, part of FDR's original Brain Trust and head of the Resettlement Administration.

    Carla, you should be pissed at Obama for not vetting this guy.

  • (Show?)

    I'd like to understand from those of you angry that O didn't vet VJ more than he did, or that wish VJ had twisted in the wind longer to reveal this Administration's true "radical" nature: just what is it that VJ has done or said that you think disqualifies him from serving?

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    Jeff- Welcome to the realities of hardball politics - Washington, DC-style. Where have you been?

    The truth is President Obama has gotten too far out in front of too many of the American people on too many issues at the same time. And he does that at his peril. He just did not have the 'political capital' to back up this Van Jones character while simultaneously trying to push his embattled health care, 'cap-and-trade', and numerous other initiatives. From a reading of some of Jones' background, his more recent statements may just be the tip of a very large iceberg... and it's possible the Obama administration knows it.

    The type of scrutiny applied to Van Jones here is also a risk President Obama has taken in naming and vesting these numerous 'czars' with almost Cabinet-level authority outside of any kind of Congressional approval/vetting. They're thus candidates to be scrutinized in what can be the more harsh and uncontrollable light of public opinion led by those outside his sphere of direct influence (i.e., members of media unbeholden/unsympathetic to him vs members of Congress...)

  • (Show?)

    So, alcatross, If i have you right...it's not that Jones shouldn't be in that position, but rather that with how thin O has spread himself, he doesn't have enough juice to put (and keep) him there. Is that a fair paraphrase? J

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    Jeff G wrote: 'just what is it that VJ has done or said that you think disqualifies him from serving?'

    Again, VJ is too much of a political liability right now. That he's said or done anything that can be called into question right now is more than Obama can handle.

    Regardless your now ~26 hours immersion in the subject, it's well beyond whether you personally agree or can be convinced VJ has said or done anything to disqualify him.

  • (Show?)

    So, if I'm reading all this correctly, it comes down to this: just about anyone with a record of publicly holding certain positions -- that there are serious answered questions about 9/11, that we have to take dramatic near-term steps to shift energy sources away from carbon as thoroughly as we can, that both American Indians and undocumented agricultural workers have (in different ways) received raw deals -- is too much of a political liability to serve in the O Administration. Is that a fair reading of these comments? Jeff

  • geoffludt (unverified)
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    Hey hey hey ... Good bye!

  • Prisoners (unverified)
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    Well...

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    Jeff G wrote: So, if I'm reading all this correctly, it comes down to this: just about anyone with a record of publicly holding certain positions -- that there are serious answered questions about 9/11, that we have to take dramatic near-term steps to shift energy sources away from carbon as thoroughly as we can, that both American Indians and undocumented agricultural workers have (in different ways) received raw deals -- is too much of a political liability to serve in the O Administration. Is that a fair reading of these comments?

    It is possible to hold/express those views without being a lightening rod for controversy - but probably not for VJ. And keep in mind there's potentially more controversial fodder in VJ's background before he experienced his 'green progressive' epiphany (suggest you read the East Bay Express article I linked above) Just because he's 'Progressive' and 'Green' now doesn't mean he gets absolution and immunity from criticism for anything he may have said or done before.

    Obviously right now, President Obama would rather not deal with the fall-out of any current or future VJ controversies.

  • Rex Zeitgeist (unverified)
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    Van Jones is just one turd in the toilet bowl of the Hussein administration, we won't rest until the whole shit is flushed.

    You left wing retard.

  • steve (unverified)
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    Although I hate this, I can see the reasoning. There is a fight for the sensible center going on, and VJ would be a distraction at best. He was expendable. Yes, the Glenn Beck crowd will thump their chests in victory, which in fact they deserve since it was they who made the case. However, looking at the numbers shows that this group is irrelevant, 58% of 22% nationwide, which translates to low-to-middling percentages in the south, single digits elsewhere. They are not part of the health care debate, merely a side-show. The administration decided to make life easier for the Snow/Baccus/Conrad types, and couldn't care less whether the wingnuts are pleased or apoplectic as usual.

  • Banal Retentive Blog (unverified)
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    This piece was a perfect end to the week where BO resorted to tabloid sports stories to distract from the fact that the Obama administration is defrauding those that voted for him.

    So, do you legitimately think more BO readers care about your distractors or hilltop mining? Do you not know that, or where you consciously distracting? Since you solicit money for campaigns, for Obama's campaign, I suggest you look up the simple definition of the word "fraud" once again.

    Maybe I'm wrong. You've banned the IP addresses of so many of the real progressives in Oregon, this might be the banal level that the remaining lackeys find entertaining!

  • A D Buck (unverified)
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    Mark Lloyd is next. We're working hard on that project. That'll be another B. Hussein Obama's marxist gone.

    Happily pumping my own gasoline I am:

    A D Buck

  • Joshua Welch (unverified)
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    When you tell the truth as Van Jones did: "Republicans are assholes." you end up resigning. When you help lie a country into an unnecessary war you get the metal of freedom.

  • Joe White Guy should resign from BO (unverified)
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    "How can a person like Jones gain the position that he did."

    Oh I don't know, maybe because he's a progressive with good ideas and a heart, opposed to a short-sighted shallow scum-bag Republican.

    Now here is a reasonable question. Why aren't bottom dwellers like yourself marginalized to the dirty crevices of society?

  • meg (unverified)
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    Now if we get rid of Rangel for TAX EVASION, things will really get "progressive".

  • meg (unverified)
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    Now if we get rid of Rangel for TAX EVASION, things will really get "progressive".

  • (Show?)

    Carla, you should be pissed at Obama for not vetting this guy.

    Vetting the guy? Are you serious?

    For the job he was asked to do, he knows his stuff. This is about some feigned rightwing outrage..not a genuine concern that a bad guy is doing an bad job. It's complete BS.

  • USB (unverified)
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    Talk show hosts and hate radio aside, this guy was a security liability, and a loose cannon. He certainly has the right to express an opinion, but (past or present) opinions become cause for close scrutiny when appointed to act on behalf of the President.

    There may still be unanswered questions about 911 in the minds of some, but to suggest the US government had any role at all smacks at total lunacy. It absolutely gives cause to suspect those who support (or have supported) such a theory of undermining the government they are now sworn to protect.

    If progressives ever want to get support from across the isle to solve real national problems, they will need to work much harder than conservatives have to rid themselves of the scary fringe. At least Mr. Obama seems to recognize this.

  • (Show?)

    If progressives ever want to get support from across the isle to solve real national problems, they will need to work much harder than conservatives have to rid themselves of the scary fringe. At least Mr. Obama seems to recognize this.

    Exactly why should progressives want or need to "work across the aisle" with people who stoke violence at town hall meetings? Why should they reach out to those who accuse Obama of wanting terrorists to bomb the country?

    The idea that Obama must purge every person from his administration who has ever said something controversial in order to appease Republicans who will never cooperate with him is ludicrous.

  • Kim (unverified)
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    Jones needed to go.

  • Richard (unverified)
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    Wow Carla, If you can't find anything wrong with Jones you're so partisen you're dense.

    Smearing Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity as "racist pigs" and "assholes" is sure your kinda stuff.

    I can't tell you how stupid this bit of yours is.

    "For the job he was asked to do, he knows his stuff. This is about some feigned rightwing outrage..not a genuine concern that a bad guy is doing an bad job. It's complete BS."

    You must have done some of your "research" on Jones.

    Make it up research of course.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Carla Axtman wrote:

    "For the job he was asked to do, he knows his stuff"

    Really?

    Do you have a detailed account of his job description, and what are the extensive qualifications he has for it?

    Specifically, what 'green jobs' has he ever created?

    Besides being a relative newcomer to the enviromental area altogether, I see no record of accomplishment in creating jobs.

    Has he founded or managed a corporation that provided 'green jobs'?

  • USB (unverified)
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    "Exactly why should progressives want or need to "work across the aisle" with people who stoke violence at town hall meetings? Why should they reach out to those who accuse Obama of wanting terrorists to bomb the country"

    Oh I don't know? Maybe to move forward for a change.

    Gotta love ya Carla, but please. I understand that no one wants to be bullied, but his views were extreme and dangerous, not controversial. Remember, all those who accuse Obama of being a terrorist, those who claim all gays are evil, those who think the government plotted 911, and so on and so on, are all equally destructive forces setting roadblocks in front of any hope for national success.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Now here's an environmental group that knows how to create green jobs.

    It's gonna take a lot of people to clean up this mess.

  • Mike (one of the many) (unverified)
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    Carla asked: Exactly why should progressives want or need to "work across the aisle" with people who stoke violence at town hall meetings?

    Simple: there simply aren't enough progressives in a majority position to pass the changes desired.

    If you want to win over the NAV folks and others, you need to wade into that aisle. Do you need to reach the other side? No. As has been said many times before neither the "Ds" nor the "Rs" have sufficient numbers to mount a majority position. Therefore, the center must be tapped. Whether registered or not, their has to be recognition of the center.

    Banking on the current majorities in the House or the Senate has been a miscalculation so far.

    I don't care much for crazy Beck or Limbaugh, and many here seem to blame them alone for these small victories against the Obama administration. There are many, many other voices who do have appeal to those in the middle, and their arguments are convincing.

    Champions on the progressive side like Thom Hartmann and Ed Schultz don't seem to be winning over many folks at all. They use tactics similar to Beck, Limbaugh, and Hannity, but don't gain any traction at all.

    Add in a little foul language like many comments here, and you simply turn off the people you need to join your coalition.

    Maturity and honesty are what will draw the middle to listen.

  • (Show?)

    At a level one or two steps above Beck, Joe White, et. al. there is also a clear eyed targeting that has been going on for years. those who set the targets know their enemies are:

    class traitors like Soros and the hated Trial Lawyers,

    Really smart grassroots aggregators like Move-On,

    Terrorists organizations like ACORN who persist in getting poor people out to vote,

    And idea people like the Apollo Alliance who are as gifted at packaging progressivism as orgs on the Right that package corporatism.

    Even if Beck 'n 'em are unclaer on the ID of the enemy, their authoritarians masters are crystal clear.

  • marv (unverified)
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    Apparently, when Van Jones signed on to the list of twelve questions regarding the events of September 11, 2001, he became a target of Beck. The disgrace here is that the previous contributors to this site have apparently not read the twelve questions.

    So I must ask why not inform yourself of the reasons. You see if there is to be health reform or any re-establishment of a Constitution Democracy an investigation of the so-called terrorist attack must have the support of the people. Regardless of political affiliation.

    To his credit Bill Cunningham interviewed Peter Lance on his program last night. Lance's Triple Cross was the topic. Cunningham supported Lance. Patrick Fitzgerald spent twenty months trying to block the books's publication as it reports the role of the FBI and the US government in covering up its prior knowledge of and the training of those who are responsible for the attack.

    Therefore, I suggest a reexamination by those who may read this post and certainly by all those who have previously commented. Or bear the burden when further loss of this society occurs.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    Van Jones Exit Isn't Right-Wing Win, It's an Obama Surrender

    Obama had the rhetoric to win but, like Bill Clinton, lacks the cojones to stand up and fight for what is right. There is a difference between compromise and surrender.

    Advance Text of Obama's Big Speech

  • (Show?)

    I think Carla has it right. Jones is falling on his sword because he is trying to be a loyal soldier, but whatever damage he is concerned about avoiding has already been done. And I don't believe that anyone is persuaded by any of this would be supportive of the administration's policies anyway.

    If there was concern about his past statements, Jones should not have accepted the appointment, but at this point resigning does little more than embolden and legitimize the attacks.

    The Bush administration understood that dynamic. Apparently Obama still needs to learn it.

  • Buckman Res (unverified)
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    Jones was a profound liability to a President already treading water in the polls. It was past time for him to go, what with his racist comments about high school shooters, his support for conspiracy theories concerning 911, and his contemptible support of a convicted cop-killer in Philadelphia.

    While it speaks well of Obama that he gave this loony the boot it speaks even worse that he did not vet Jones better before giving him a job in his administration.

    BHO is making it too easy for the opposition.

  • marv (unverified)
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    Buckman Res, why did Patrick Fitzgerald spend twenty months trying to prevent the publication of a book, which you obviously have not read, which profoundly proves that there was a conspiracy to attack the World Trade Center?

    And why do you think that it is ok to allow that to happen. Do you hate America that much?

  • mp97303 (unverified)
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    Could the lunatic fringe of the right succeed without the main stream media's support. It seems the MSM is all too eager to run with these crazy ideas (death panels, etc) and make them legitimate news stories. It's easy to blame Rush and Fox, but ABC, CBS, NBC, and CNN are just as guilty.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Sorry folks, I know there are people who really admired Van Jones. I had never heard of him before this story.

    Call me old fashioned, but I think this guy was stupid---and whoever vetted him for this job should have been more careful.

    Years ago a political mentor said that anyone involved with a particular candidate or office holder should know as much as possible about that person to prevent bad situations just like this.

    All this stuff about "they won't stop at Jones"---is there really anyone else out there who has made such inflamatory remarks? If so, such remarks are OK as long as they are from "our side"?

    I realize this marks me as an independent rather than as someone "from the left". Tough luck.

  • alcatross (unverified)
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    mp97303 wrote: 'Could the lunatic fringe of the right succeed without the main stream media's support. It seems the MSM is all too eager to run with these crazy ideas (death panels, etc) and make them legitimate news stories. It's easy to blame Rush and Fox, but ABC, CBS, NBC, and CNN are just as guilty.'

    Actually, at least in the case of Van Jones, the self-proclaimed 'MSM' largely ignored the story until only very late in the game.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    "It was past time for him to go, what with his racist comments about high school shooters, his support for conspiracy theories concerning 911, and his contemptible support of a convicted cop-killer in Philadelphia."

    There are many responsible and distinguished people who suspect what the MSM propagated about 9/11 is not the full story and that much remains left unexplained. Why did Building 7 collapse despite not being hit? The same goes for Mumia Abu-Jabal. There are many people who question the integrity of HIS trial but have not tried to defend other cases with similar factors of race.

    Try an Internet search for "racism philadelphia police" for another aspect of this case.

  • notchomsky (unverified)
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    Maybe the White House's refusal to stand by Jones and willingness to accept the demands of right-wing political terrorists is a symptom of the bigger disease whereby Obama is already selling out progressives on every major priority. Perhaps, in short, Jones isn't the issue - and what his firing represents is.

    I fear that is the case - certainly the Obama administration's behavior on everything from health care to climate change to war suggests that's what's going on. And if that's true, then we've got a huge problem on our hands. (Daid Sirota, Obama Backs Down...)

    Re: "Obama had the rhetoric to win but, like Bill Clinton, lacks the cojones to stand up and fight for what is right."

    It has nothing to do with balls and everything to do with ideology. Obama and Clinton are conservatives to everyone in the world except Americans. And it's not ordinary Americans who are to blame for Obama policy:

    America is a “Failed Democracy”: Its People want Peace, and its Elected Officials make War:

    Congratulations to the White House and Congress: America is now at war in three Middle Eastern nations, on behalf of governments in all three that are weak, unpopular, and corrupt...As Francis Boyle, international law professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, puts it, “Now we have a situation where Obama is off on his own without authorization from the UN Security Council and also now illegally exceeding the authorization that had been given to Bush by Congress after 911…plus he has now escalated the conflict into Pakistan…(and) set off a humanitarian catastrophe for people of Pakistan akin to what Nixon set off in Cambodia.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    "Re: "Obama had the rhetoric to win but, like Bill Clinton, lacks the cojones to stand up and fight for what is right."

    It has nothing to do with balls and everything to do with ideology. Obama and Clinton are conservatives to everyone in the world except Americans. And it's not ordinary Americans who are to blame for Obama policy:"

    notchomsky: You have a point to some extent, but another aspect is that Obama chose to have Van Jones on his team just as he chose to associate with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Then, when he was attacked, Obama chose to throw both under the bus without so much as a minimal defense of his original choices. This nation is in a sorry state when nut cases like Glenn Beck can push a president around or a president allows himself to be pushed around by a nut case like Glenn Beck. I don't think Beck would have tried to push Nixon or Lyndon Johnson around. They knew how to play hardball and Beck would have known not to screw with them.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    "This nation is in a sorry state when nut cases like Glenn Beck can push a president around or a president allows himself to be pushed around by a nut case like Glenn Beck."

    So, we shouldn't be surprised when Binyamin Netanyahu basically tells Obama on the issue of settlements in Palestine what Cheney told Senator Leahy on another issue - "Go @#$% yourself." Kind of makes a fella feel proud to be an American.

  • pacnwjay (unverified)
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    Democrats and Republicans play by different rules.
    1. Republican wingnuts (either elected or in an administration) can espouse any kind of fringe opinion without complaint. Democrats are expected to be sincere, rational and within the mainstream or they are labeled "extreme." 2. Republicans can challenge FACTS by telling the media that they must include their right-wing point of view. Even if that has nothing to do with the reality of the facts. The liberal point of view is often not even included in the conversation: it's mainstream vs. right-wing. 3. Republicans ignore complaints and attacks. No matter what, the wagons get circled and everything outside is irrelevant. Democrats freak out at the first sound of gunfire, and desperately seek out martyrs to sacrifice to the political gods. (She's never appeased.) 4. Republicans shoot for the moon and complain that they're being persecuted if they have to make any compromises. Democrats assume they'll never get what they really want, so bring a watery soup to the table, and are appreciative that they get to actually sit at the table.

    I soooooo long for a national Democrat that actually brings a set of cajones to the table.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Bill Bodden wrote:

    "Obama chose to have Van Jones on his team just as he chose to associate with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Then, when he was attacked, Obama chose to throw both under the bus without so much as a minimal defense of his original choices."

    The sentiments expressed by Wright and Jones are indefensible.

    Obama first tried to claim that he didn't know what Wright had been saying , because to admit that he knew and continued to attend and financially support Trinity church was indefensible.

    The fact that Obama not only attended but also took his daughters to sit at the feet of Jeremiah Wright is by far the greatest indication of how far out of step Obama is with the average American.

    His choice of Van Jones then comes as no surprise. There are doubtless dozens of Vans in the Obama administration, each one as extreme and racist as the other.

    Some have said, 'well they didn't vet him very well'.

    I don't believe that at all.

    I am convinced that they knew all about Van Jones and were very comfortable with him.

    If you are ok with Jones and agree that Obama was comfortable with Jones, then ask yourself why most of America is not.

  • (Show?)

    If you are ok with Jones and agree that Obama was comfortable with Jones, then ask yourself why most of America is not.

    Since when are Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and FoxNews "most of America"?

    False premise.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Well, Carla, your guy Obama was smart enough to know he couldn't defend Van Jones to the American people.

  • pleth (unverified)
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    I assume "Joe White" is some low-level flack at Hill & Knowlton paid to monitor and participate in a specified set of blogs, as part of a larger public relations strategy.

    Of course he (she?) would vehemently deny this. And regardless, s/he's a convenient barometer for what the right wing nut-jobs are being fed from week to week by those paid to tell them what they think.

    Kudos to BO for getting big enough to warrant paid attention from the GOP media control machine.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    "The sentiments expressed by Wright and Jones are indefensible."

    Joe: It is probably safe to say that the sentiments you have in mind are snippets fed to the public (and you) by the mainstream media with a conservative and radical right-wing bias. The Rev. Wright spoke out strongly against the human rights abuses inflicted on the Palestinians. Do you have a problem with that? Major human rights organizations made reports that supported Wright's position.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Joe are you one of those cynics who believes the worst of "the other side" and that your "side" is infallible?

    I think Van Jones has quite a mouth and should have known better, but I don't believe the Obama folks hired him knowing what he said.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    LT wrote:

    "I don't believe the Obama folks hired him knowing what he said. "

    Then you apparently believe that they hired someone to be a close adviser to the President and were ignorant of his views.

    Quite unlikely, IMHO.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Bill Bodden wrote:

    "The Rev. Wright spoke out strongly against the human rights abuses inflicted on the Palestinians."

    And he published the Hamas manifesto in his weekly church bulletin.

    That's a bit (quite a bit) more than 'speaking out against human rights abuses.'

    His pilgrimage to Moammar Khaddafi ok with you too, Bill?

    How 'bout his gloating after 9/11 that it was America's fault and the chickens are coming home to roost? That ok with you?

    Would you take your wife and kids to sit at his feet week after week and slurp up his venom?

    Obama did.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    pleth wrote:

    "I assume "Joe White" is some low-level flack at Hill & Knowlton paid to monitor and participate in a specified set of blogs"

    You would assume incorrectly. No surprise there.

    But thanks for the best laugh line of the day.

  • Kurt Chapman (unverified)
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    Van Jones got Borked. That is what happens when a lazy White house fails to properly vet their nominees and appointees.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    "His pilgrimage to Moammar Khaddafi ok with you too, Bill?"

    You didn't answer my question about the Palestinians which is in line with your modus operandum. If you are trapped and can't answer a question dodge it and try another tack. However, I won't stoop to your cheap shotes, and I'll answer yours on this. Several government officials made pilgrimages to Libya and got Gaddaffi to get out of the nuclear business, not that he was much capable of doing anything there in the first place. Gaddaffi is bad news but probably not as bad as our propaganda system has him demonized. And not so bad that American and European companies won't do business with him. As for Reverend Wright, if he went there to get the Libyan side of the story that makes a lot of sense before coming to some judgment. More sense than what appears to be your way of taking any bullshit that comes out of Faux News and hate radio without checking the other side.

    "How 'bout his gloating after 9/11 that it was America's fault and the chickens are coming home to roost? That ok with you?"

    Your use of the word "gloating" is unjustified, but he had a point about the chickens coming home to roost. Michael Scheuer was formerly in charge of the bin Laden unit at the CIA. He wrote "Imperial Hubris" under the pseudonym of "Anonymous" and more or less made the same point. American abuses of Arabs and Sunnis helped inspire al-Qaeda's hatred of America that led to 9/11. What upset bin Laden and his supporters? American support for Israeli abuses of Palestinians. American-enforced sanctions on Iraq that cost an estimated half a million Iraqi children their lives. Madeleine Albright, former secretary of state when these sanctions were doing their evil work said "we" (the Clinton Administration and Congress) thought it was worth the sacrifice of half a million children's lives. Do you agree with that, Joe? Are you so callous that the unnecessary deaths of 500,000 children mean nothing to you? Or, are you a racist and figure Arab kids don't count? Are you capable of understanding why Arabs might be offended by what we did to their fellow Arabs? Can you understand any of that, Joe? Or, are you as stupid as your buddy, Glenn?

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Bill Bodden wrote:

    "Gaddaffi is bad news but probably not as bad as our propaganda system has him demonized."

    I'll remember that as I watch the reruns of him welcoming the Lockerbie bomber home as a hero.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    Again, Joe, you chickened out on the questions I challenged you with.

    As for the so-called Lockerbie bomber several people with respected credentials have studied his trial and conviction and have come to the conclusion Megrahi and Libya had nothing to do with Pan Am 103. One theory is that Pan Am 103 was revenge for the USS Vincennes shooting down Iran Flight 655, an innocent commercial flight with 290 people on board.

    Fox News screaming head Glenn Beck now tells President Obama to fire White House employees, and Obama obeys.

  • William Smyth (unverified)
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    "Has open season just been declared on the few progressives who remain in this Administration?"

    Of course it has. Either letting Van Jones resign or forcing him to resign will only embolden those who oppose Obama's agenda.

    Response to Joe White.

    "And he published the Hamas manifesto in his weekly church bulletin."

    He republished an opinion piece that had first appeared in the LA Times. Lots of different opinions were published in the church bulletin.

    "His pilgrimage to Moammar Khaddafi ok with you too, Bill?"

    He was part of group traveling to multiple African countries. Libya was just one stop on the trip. Rev. Wright himself did not meet with Khaddafi.

    "How 'bout his gloating after 9/11 that it was America's fault and the chickens are coming home to roost? That ok with you?"

    On 9/16/2001, Rev. Wright gave a sermon about stopping the cycle of violence. Cautioning the congregation not to get caught up seeking revenge. From the sermon. Blessed are they who dash your baby's brains against a rock [From Psalm 137]. And that, my beloved, is a dangerous place to be, yet that is where the people of faith are in 551 BC, and that is where far too many people of faith are in 2001 AD. We have moved from the hatred of armed enemies to the hatred of unarmed innocents. We want revenge, we want paybacks, and we don't care who gets hurt in the process.

    He called on the congregation to first reexamine their own individual relationship with God. Second, don't let petty differences get in the way of telling your loved ones how much you love them. And finally, praise God for giving you another day to get your act together.

    He never said 9/11 was America's fault. The chickens coming home to roost section came from him paraphrasing what Am. Peck said on Fox news. Peck was making the case that 9/11 was "blowback" for past US actions. It is clear to me the Rev. Wright was focused on how we stop the cycle of violence while acknowledging some response was required. Again from the sermon.

    Every public service of worship I have heard about so far in the wake of the American tragedy has had in its prayers and in its preachments, sympathy and compassion for those who were killed and for their families, and God's guidance upon the selected presidents and upon our war machine, as they do what they do and what they gotta do - payback.

  • marv (unverified)
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    Let us be clear what "Joe White" supports and advocates. He supports and advocates the intelligence agency training Ali Muhammed who parrticipated in the murder of Anwar Sadat and later was the FBI man on the inside who bombed the World Trade Center in 1993.

    Joe White supports and advocates the FBI conviscating 81 of the 85 videos that show what hit the pentagon on 9-11-01. Joe White disagrees with seven of the ten members of the 911 commission who believe that the White House participated in a cover up.

    In short Joe White (a phony name covering up his or her true identity) supports the attack on the the World Trade Center in 2001. He is an enemy of the US. He cheers when the CIA's provided EID kill American soldiers in Afghanistan. Why does he hate our soldiers? Why does he want our nation destroyed. Why does BO allow an enemy of the US to hide behind a phony name.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    Corrected link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/thank-you-glenn-beck_b_278839.html

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    William Smyth wrote:

    "He republished an opinion piece that had first appeared in the LA Times. Lots of different opinions were published in the church bulletin. "

    Don't know about any churches you've ever attended, but none that I've attended have ever published pro-terrorist group opinion pieces.

    But Obama's church did so, unapologetically.

  • William Smyth (unverified)
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    The following is from a member of Trinity talking about the Hamas article. http://truthabouttrinity.blogspot.com/2008/03/truth-regarding-hamas-distortion.html

    From my perspective, it is another "educational" piece, with the last paragraph thereof envisioning a peace between Palestine and Israel. The Pastor's Page, in my opinion has always been used to educate the members of the congregation on issues (across the spectrum) that they might not knowledge about -- and to broaden the congregation's critical thinking, and to provide a more informed lens through which to read and listen to traditional media reports of current events

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    Sorry, I don't buy it.

    The church's duty is to present a Christian perspective, not that of a terrorist group.

    If he wants to recommend that they subscribe to the LA Times, fine.

    But the pastor's duty is to provide a Biblical view, not be an echo chamber for radicals who are public about their desire to annihilate a country that they dislike.

  • William Smyth (unverified)
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    Have you actually read the article?

    I think it is a "Christian perspective" to play the role of peacemaker and to be concerned about the suffering of people anywhere. Sometimes you need to understand the viewpoints of both sides in a conflict in order to be of assistance in resolving the conflict or relieving suffering.

    Knowledge and information is a good thing. The people in the congregation were under no obligation to agree or disagree with the author of the article.

  • Joe White (unverified)
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    I am not interested in 'suffering Hamas'. I have no pity for terrorists.

    If Trinity had published an article from a moderate, peaceful group of Palestinians, this would be a different discussion.

    <h2>But Jeremiah Wright chose to shill for Hamas. I already understand their view, and Trinity Church has no business promoting the POV of a terrorist group.</h2>

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