Skip to main content

Harold Meyerson's 24 September WashPost column says what most of the media will not say:  

-- ACORN is not a criminal enterprise;
-- The right has turned their guns on ACORN because it works for the poor and disenfranchised -- whom the right wants to keep poor and disenfranchised; and,
-- The legitimate media has failed in its coverage of ACORN.

More follows:

Let's cut through the rightwing, Fox-generated bullshit and lay out some facts:

-- ACORN is not a criminal enterprise.
-- ACORN has not engaged in voter fraud of any kind.
-- When ACORN has discovered its staffers doing anything that smacks of illegality, the staffers have been fired.
-- Republikkkons and rightwingers hate ACORN because the organization works -- successfully -- on behalf of poor people, whom Republikkkons and rightwingers hate.

ACORN's major campaigns -- all of which have been successful -- were (1) raise the minimum wage; (2) curtail predatory lending practices by banks; and, (3) expand the electorate to include people who frequently do not vote.

The Republicans and rightwingers cannot tolerate any of these three successes because: (1) they want to keep working people as poor as possible; (2) they and their supporters and donors profit from sleazy banking practices; and , (3) they want to make certain that the only people who vote are white folks from the Baptist church and country club.

Harold Meyerson lays it out for us in his 24 September Washington Post column:

Quoting Meyerson's column:

For ACORN, Truth Lost Amid the Din

By Harold Meyerson
Thursday, September 24, 2009

So what does ACORN actually do, anyway?

The embattled community organizing group is much in the news these days, thanks to the idiocies of a handful of now-suspended staffers having been filmed and YouTubed by a right-wing sting squad. Most of the stories present ACORN as, at best, a shady organization up to no good in America's inner cities, not to mention the nation's primary source of voting fraud.

What's been obscured amid all the polemics, or the polemics passing as news reports, is what ACORN is and does. Founded in Little Rock in 1970 as an organization agitating for free school lunches, Vietnam veterans' rights and more hospital emergency rooms, ACORN has grown in the past four decades into the nation's largest community organizing group. Based in low-income neighborhoods, it has nearly 500,000 dues-paying members, recruited by door-to-door canvassers, with chapters in 110 cities in 40 states. Nationwide, it has more than 1,000 staffers.

What are the projects on which all these staffers and members work? Raising the minimum wage, for one. ACORN conceived and led the successful initiative campaign to raise the wage in Florida in 2004 and in four more states in 2006. In the past four years, it successfully pressured seven legislatures in other states to raise their minimum wage as well.

Another major campaign has been to limit the interest and fees that banks charge homeowners. In the 1990s, ACORN spearheaded a number of legal actions, often joined by states' attorneys general, that compelled such lenders as Citigroup to change many of their practices. The group has led successful drives to outlaw the most egregious predatory lending in nine states. It also counsels thousands of inner-city homeowners and home buyers.

ACORN's third focus has been to expand the electorate. In the 2007-08 election cycle, it registered 1.3 million new voters in the nation's inner cities. This activity particularly vexed many Republican politicians, who have repeatedly accused the organization of massive voter fraud.

. . .

Now, how much of this would you know from following the stories about ACORN that have been running in even the best of the media? Little to nothing, as Peter Dreier, a professor of politics at Occidental College, and Christopher R. Martin, a professor of journalism at University of Northern Iowa, just concluded in an exhaustive study of news coverage of ACORN. Looking at the 647 stories on the group that ran in leading newspapers and broadcast networks in 2007 and 2008, they found that not only did a majority of such stories focus on allegations of voter fraud but also that 83 percent of the stories that linked ACORN to those allegations failed to mention that actual instances of voter fraud were all but nonexistent.

"Only a handful of the stories in the New York Times, Washington Post and Wall Street Journal," Dreier and Martin note, "mentioned that actual cases of voter fraud were very rare" --

. . .

Dreier and Martin also note that newspapers in cities where ACORN has long been active against predatory lending and in voter registration -- they studied the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Minneapolis Star Tribune and the Cleveland Plain Dealer -- provided more balanced stories and relied less on partisan sources than the national papers did. But with some national newspapers shuttering their domestic bureaus, the truth about ACORN -- the nation's premier tribune for the poor -- may be harder and harder to find.

Originally posted to Old Redneck on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 02:42 AM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (142+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JekyllnHyde, Joe Bob, rick, murphy, SarahLee, Geenius at Wrok, TrueBlueMajority, Powered Grace, LynChi, eeff, dsb, Mumon, dlcox1958, bumblebums, hubcap, unterhausen, Gustogirl, joynow, bronte17, missLotus, jiffykeen, mkfarkus, Pangloss, heiderose1, admiralh, Wrench44, TiaRachel, epcraig, GN1927, betson08, hazzcon, awkward007, Lefty Mama, tomjones, jcrit, rmx2630, Bluesee, marina, m16eib, CTPatriot, kefauver, goldrick, jimstaro, Little Lulu, onanyes, rb608, Bob B, snoopydawg, kkjohnson, WB Reeves, LeighAnn, Do Tell, Pinko Elephant, myboo, cybersaur, BlueInARedState, ActivistGuy, Naniboujou, DarkestHour, gatorcog, imabluemerkin, NC Dem, armadillo, bleeding heart, MarciaJ720, ER Doc, onionjim, CA Nana, frostbite, drdana, louavul, Hedwig, Eryk, Nulwee, tegrat, pfiore8, dotsright, Loudoun County Dem, possum, LillithMc, tbirchard, akdude6016, vbdietz, jhop7, pioneer111, MadAsHellMaddie, uciguy30, Scioto, AnnieJo, wyvern, TheFatLadySings, Involuntary Exile, filby, wonderful world, Happy Days, temptxan, bakenjuddy, stillwaters, TennesseeGurl, ARS, Carol in San Antonio, slaney black, h bridges, Mercuriousss, Hot2na, Deoliver47, IreGyre, stevenwag, maxzj05, sherijr, fernan47, Nonconformist, Adept2u, hamsisu, Contra, stanjz, marabout40, LaughingPlanet, drainflake77, elginblt, ItsSimpleSimon, AJ in Camden, Weaselina, washunate, Floande, moondance, Olon, Verbalobe, stonedoubt, Murdershewrote, thethinveil, Hoghead99, bamabikeguy, green plum, tardis10, ilovecheese, kid funkadelic, happenstance, Catlady62, glower, boredwitnuts, Tentwenty
  •  on the recc list with 2 comments! (14+ / 0-)

    Thank you for shining some sunshine on this.

    Here in America, our destiny is not written for us - it's written by us. Barack Obama 9/28/08

    by quadmom on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 03:25:29 AM PDT

  •  Please consider posting anonymous donor match (19+ / 0-)

    "I have an exciting update to share with you. An anonymous donor has offered to match all new donations to ACORN -- dollar-for-dollar -- up to $20,000.

    There will never be a more important moment to donate to ACORN -- we are in the fight of our lives. And now, when you donate, your gift will be worth TWICE as much, up to $20,000."

    Thank you for everything you do to help people in need,

    -- Bertha Lewis

    http://www.acorn.org/

  •  If only facts and logic were enough.... (10+ / 0-)

    if you read the comments on WaPo, you'll see that the Rightwingers just don't find facts, logic, and clarity to be very convincing. They'd rather believe lies and appeals to their baser emotions. It's very sad but that's what we are up against.

    "No, it's all right," said the prospective diner. "The slugs have formed a defensive ring." -- Moving Pictures. Terry Pratchett.

    by wonderful world on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 03:48:45 AM PDT

  •  Acorn is toast (9+ / 0-)

    Sorry to inject a bit of bad news on top of bad news, but as a member of the reality-based community I feel the need to point this out.
    O'Keefe won this round because he got off his ass, took risks, and got lucky. The left is getting lazy and complacent, with Obama's election, and need to get lean and mean.
    I'm looking into getting my own hidden camera. There are plenty of racist republicans and racist churches and bullshit right-wing think tanks to expose. It will be like shooting fish in a barrel. And as a standard issue white-guy, I have easy access to them.
    Join the scrum and stop trying to defend the indefensible.
    Cheers,
    MCPETRUK

    •  Got camera will follow (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      epcraig, Nulwee, Nona D Above

      Im in lets make a documentary

    •  Great comment! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nulwee, plumbobb

      The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

      by ctexrep on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 03:54:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I prepared taxes for years, even did an H&R stint (6+ / 0-)

      Preachers and farmers, the two clients all preparers view with dread.

      I'll wager audits versus preachers is low hanging fruit for the IRS, they want every mile of God's highway fully deductible, every long distance call counseling the lost sheep.

      "I have a scheme for stopping war. It's this - no nation is allowed to enter a war till they have paid for the last one." Will Rogers

      by bamabikeguy on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 04:04:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Reality... (8+ / 0-)

      The reality about ACORN is that they're horribly managed, and have been for decades.  However wonderful, well meaning, hard working staff and volunteers they may have, the organization itself is just ridiculously bad.  This is one of those non-profits that a lot of us who know them, or have worked for in the past just shake our heads and grumble whenever they're mentioned.  

      There were quite a lot of diaries and even some FP posts about the organizational/management issues surrounding the org last year and the year before when the embezzlement investigation came to light.

      I guess we're all supposed to pretend they're great folks now that they're being attacked by the right wing, and circle the wagons or whatever, but some of us are still reality based (as you said), and ACORN is still the same sloppy badly run group it's always been.  

      •  Is the ratio of bad apples worse than any (9+ / 0-)

        other civic organization, including Congress?

        Former Sen. Mel Martinez has joined the lobbying shop of major law firm DLA Piper -- just two weeks after resigning from the Senate.

        Martinez has joined the firm as a partner and will advise on issues ranging from government affairs, litigation, defense, energy and real estate, according to a statement released by DLA Piper.

        USA Today reports that Martinez will come to the firm with $456,220 in cash from his campaign committee. DLA Piper made $11.8 million last year lobbying for clients that include the Royal Bank of Scotland and Lockheed Martin.

        10% law flaunters is my universal estimation.

        "I have a scheme for stopping war. It's this - no nation is allowed to enter a war till they have paid for the last one." Will Rogers

        by bamabikeguy on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 04:09:40 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The reality about ACORN is that their (10+ / 0-)

        partnership with Working Families Party is getting renegades elected in New York.

        The reality about ACORN is that they won a multi-million dollar law suit against Household International, recently acquired by Hong Kong Shanghai Bank so the model of how they rip off poor people via loans could be exported to the far east.

        That is the reality about ACORN which, for some reason never gets mentioned, even though insurance of all kinds is the topic of the day.  Instead, there's the red herring story about a pimp in his grandmother's coat.

        How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

        by hannah on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:13:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'd like to see churches exposed... (11+ / 0-)

      when their ministers are planting anti-Democrat ideas in the heads of their parishioners.  A friend of mine was told by a co-worker that her minister told the congregation that God gave Ted Kennedy cancer so that he wouldn't be able to work on health reform.  
      I'd like to see these churches lose their tax exempt status.  

    •  Right wing nuts always win? (12+ / 0-)

      you are trying to tell us that they screwed ACORN and we have to sit and take it? C'mon... that is why we always lose. You are not the reality based guy, you are the surrender always to lies an innuendo guy!

      •  Yup, we need to fight back (5+ / 0-)

        Both by defending our people and taking the fight to the right-wing organizations. I'd love to see an effort to de-fund the right, just like Grover Norquist has been trying to do to the left for 20 years. Right now, right-wing welfare allows them to build a powerful farm team of crooked lobbyists, bureaucrats, lawyers, and politicians. They must be stopped.

    •  Sorry. (15+ / 0-)

      I'd feel more offended with ACORN if the couple with the camera first went to ACORN higher-ups and were rebuffed, THEN went to the media.

      Instead, they hatched this plot that they'd catch someone a little less-trained, less quick on the uptake, and then paint all of ACORN with that same brush.

      No, these camera-toting exposee folks were not interested in rooting out corruption, but just taking down ACORN at least a few pegs.

      Keep in mind this sort of thing would be even easier if you can get a friend hired, then go in for an interview with them with a 'hidden' camera, and ALERT THE MEDIA! they're toast, as you say.

      The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dreams shall never die. - Sen. Edward M. Kennedy

      by Stymnus on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:31:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, they are not toast (17+ / 0-)

      ACORN does not depend on Federal Funding to exist.

      Get your facts straight before making pronouncements.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:54:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  ACORN is not indefensible (10+ / 0-)

      Join the scrum and stop trying to defend the indefensible.

      That's an interesting line of argument. First, ACORN isn't scum, and they're not indefensible.

      Second, the challenge isn't lack of information. We know there are corporatists and racists on the right. The barrier is getting our elected representatives to listen to us (the majority) rather than Wall Street and K Street (the minority).

      •  The right is rrying to (9+ / 0-)

        "Rev. Wright" ACORN.Say the lie long enough and it becomes the truth.They want this to gain traction.

        Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

        by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:28:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  This has reminded me SO much of Wright issue (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          washunate

          (yes I know he made an ass out of himself at press conference, probably out of hurt and anger and pride)

          Whoever went through years of sermons and found those hot minutes and put them into clips knew they would be shown and Lord were they, over and over. He looked like a racist, hateful, unpatriotic bigot. Showing them wasn't a racist thing

          But there is no way any white minister of a white candidate who said controversial things in a few sermons would have been treated the same way by the press. They wouldn't have acted like there was no other side to be looked at. The fact that Wright and the church with it's thousands of members got threats and hate mail...well that was incidental damage.

          So many parishioners wrote trying to get some attention...including white ones. I noted at least a dozen times black journalist who were panelists on some Sunday or cable show spoke up and were simply ignored or dismissed every time. That included Tameron Hall telling Chis Matthews she went there when she lived in Chicago, it was one of two churches that were always recommended. She'd never heard anything like in those clips but she called about a dozen friends who still went there and they were all shocked by those clips. That was not the Rev Wright they knew,...
          She said a few more things until she was cut off by Chris Matthews saying something like 'I find that hard to believe'
          There were so many incidents like that but I'll mention just one more...ABC 'This Week' not long before the ABC primary debate where Obama was jumped on for Wright.
          First George cut off an editor of Atlanta Journal (black)who was talking about her brother and his friends going there and it was actually a pretty mainstream even conservative church and was talking about what his sermons were like.
          But at the end of the show George asked Time's Jay Carney (now with Biden) when we'd be hearing more on Wright. Carney said their office had gotten the many years of sermons...audio or video tapes...and he'd had all of his reporters going through them trying to find something...but they'd just gotten through all of them. They hadn't found anything else that controversial so there was no story.

          In what universe would that not be a huge and worthy story. He was preaching for over 30 years (since he got out of Marines where he got 3 presidential commendations) They were your basic, if more colorful, come to Jesus love your neighbor sermons. He was not racist or unpatriotic or hateful. The church was not filled with 10,000 America haters. Since Obama was shown not to be at any of the sermons on the clips that meant he didn't listen to 'that hate' for 20 years.
          No story?

          I'm sure Time magazine was not the only one digging for more dirt and finding (gasp) Christian services. This church would have been so easy to defend and deserved it whatever anyone thought of Obama. Good Lord it was one of the only big churches to stay in town and had one of the most extensive outreach programs offering so many services to so many needing help. It had people from all races. Wright was well respected, educated and was a valued lecturer all over the country.
          But it was no story and so the scorn and threats and hate continued. To this day Obama listening to hate for twenty years is something you still often hear...and it would have been so easy to clear up. They even had huge variety of the sermons on line.

          I don't believe that a renowned white preacher of a church with 10,000 mostly white members would have been treated that way nor would white journalists who attended and spoke up to defend it have been simply dismissed.

          I think the same racial undertones are running through this story. I don't think Congress would have acted so quickly with absolutely no investigation were it tapes done by a left wing activist to capture employees of a white republican group looking bad.

          I'm not over the Wright thing, I think it shows something horrible about the press looking to titillate and not illuminate whatever the cost. And this says something so bad about Congress. Of course it's reason for concern...so look into it. But immediately defund? Ugly

      •  scrum is a rugby term (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        awkward007, IreGyre, washunate

        The scrum is when both teams join together in a mass huddle and push each other. It's a bizarre game.

        In a democracy, everyone is a politician. ~ Ehren Watada

        by Lefty Mama on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 08:11:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  fair enough (3+ / 0-)

          I assumed that was a typo. We all know what assuming does! Sorry about that.

          That's an interesting image. It equates what ACORN does as being at the same level, as competing on the same field. I don't like false equivalencies like that. The GOP employs precisely these kinds of tactics to take advantage of our sense of fair play, of giving their smear campaigns the benefit of the doubt.

  •  It's funny that most (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rick, epcraig, Nulwee

    disagree.

    Most agree that they have done good for many - but not too many can defend what has occured - not even Acorn as they have fired many of the people in question and launched internal investigations.

    The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government. - Thomas Jefferson

    by ctexrep on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 03:53:15 AM PDT

    •  The thing about ACORN (11+ / 0-)

      They are hiring people who are risks to hire.  They are hiring them with full knowledge of the risk.  

      We are talking about people who are in job training and who are ex-cons.  

      I will accept a failure in judgment from these folks.  I wouldn't allow them to stay after they've committed an infraction, but if we can't allow an organization to attempt to support those in the worst position, then we can't do anything.  

      Think about what it means to be an ex-convict.  A. You were in prison, because you obviously lacked an ability to think about consequences.  B. After you get out, what are your prospects? C.  Did your time in prison really do anything to train you for the real world?  D.  Nobody will hire your.  

      It is simply a no win situation for those people who have served time for their crime.  They are marked for their lives with the stigma of prison time.  

      When an organization attempts to support those on the absolute lowest rung of our society, they will no doubt have problems with some of them.  There was a reason they were in prison, right?  

      In my opinion, it's like dealing with the drug addicted.  If you can't accept that some of them will fail and return to drugs, then there is no point in helping any of them.  

      Some of these folks will fail.  That's going to happen.  

      "Bow down before my terrifying ability as a Trusted User to halfway hide a comment 5 times in a 24 hour period!"

      by otto on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:27:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  What day do Rupert (4+ / 0-)

      Hand out your check? ctexrep aren't you concerned about the pedophilia at XE(Blackwater). They paid little kids $1.00 for oral sex.

      Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

      by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:42:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Agreed; ACORN has been (29+ / 0-)

    targeted for one reason only: GOTV effectiveness among traditional Dem constituencies.  Not surprising that they have been targeted so heavily by the GOP, nor am I surprised that the usual DLC crew wouldn't mind just throwing them under the bus rather than acknowledging their contributions to the whatever remains of the grassroots nature of the Democratic party (a grassroots which the DLC would like to dispense with altogether).

    Progressives need to stand up for ACORN, not stand by and watch this organization be destroyed by regressive elements in both parties who quite frankly wouldn't mind if ACORN's target voters stayed home and stopped pulling s- like packing the House with Progressives and Congressional Black/Hispanic/Asian Caucus members, and voting for the likes of Barack Obama during the presidential primaries and general elections.  ACORN does great things.

    Thank you very very much for writing this.  Great diary; enthusiastic rec.

    I am not the first President to take up this cause, but I am determined to be the last.-President Obama

    by GN1927 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 04:18:24 AM PDT

  •  Need to Support ACORN (23+ / 0-)

    It is really disheartening to see prominent Democrats joining the vicious GOP to take away money geared to ACORN.   I don't see these same politicians taking away money from the assassins Blackwater.  We need to push back on this campaign to discredit ACORN.   The voter fraud charge would not stick so they had to make something up and have finally come up with something.  I will write Keith O to ask him to do a  story on the good that ACORN has done in 4 decades because the Conservative MSM is out to destroy this great organization.  Thank you Old Redneck.

    •  Have you checked out how your congressperson (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      epcraig, GN1927, sherijr

      and senators voted? That was the first thing I did, then I called them, one thank you, two you should have known betters.

      "Don't fall or we both go" Derek Hersey

      by ban nock on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:14:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The mainstream Democratic Party.... (5+ / 0-)

      ....is so hostile to the left that they'd rather lose elections than do anything to defend the left. This is depressing. John Kerry knew damn well that he wouldn't be considered a serious candidate for President in 2003-04 if he didn't vote for our crime against Iraq in 2002. Even though this crippled his support from the left, despite the enormous anger towards Bush by 2004. Democrats managed to buy a clue in 2006 and 2008, only to get back to their old tricks after winning any sort of power. It's pathetic and I suppose a testament to the Georgetown cocktail party/conventional wisdom set and the power of big corporations.

  •  Greta von Racist put this up on her site (4+ / 0-)

    I can't decide who is a bigger idiot (tie?)

    I have been sitting at my desk trying to decide who I think is a bigger idiot....the ACORN official making decisions for ACORN about a lawsuit? or the lawyer who is advising ACORN and who filed suit?  or is it a tie?

    What happened?

    ACORN just filed a lawsuit against the two with the undercover camera and filed against someone who has a website who posted/published the video.  The decision to file suit is real dumb for them and it doesn't matter if they are right about the two party consent law in Maryland.

    Why are they so dumb?

    By filing a lawsuit, ACORN just opened itself up for FULL DISCOVERY!! They are going to get hit with interrogatories, requests for production of documents, depositions etc.  And who will get deposed? Just about everybody!  And if discovery produces evidence of a crime? You can be sure that the evidence will be fed ex'd to the Justice Department!

    Yes, ACORN will try and limit the scope of discovery to the issue of one party consent to taping...but discovery rules are really, really, really broad.   I sure would hate to be rolling the dice on this one if I were ACORN and if I had something to hide!

    By the way, what would have been my legal advice to ACORN if they were my client? I would have told them to lie low and just hope the heat passes and not to file suit....but they have done the opposite.  They have just given 3 parties the right to ask them a billion questions (UNDER OATH) and demand billions of documents etc!  And how about risk of video taped depositions of ACORN officials?  The more I think about this, the more I wonder whose good idea this was!

    Yes, idiots.

    FOX needs to be taken off the air NOW! The racist are gloating in their victory.

    Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

    by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 04:55:49 AM PDT

    •  delusion (0+ / 0-)

      You're delusional. I can tell because you use a lot of exclamation marks and ALL CAPS.
      ACORN clearly has a screwed up culture. They will continue to exist in some form, but better people in their organization will reform, hopefully, into something better.
      Cheers,MCPETRUK

    •  Isn't the rght-wing mantra (9+ / 0-)

      "If you've got nothing to hide..."

      By filing a lawsuit, ACORN just opened itself up for FULL DISCOVERY!!

      They're assuming that's there's other stuff to hide.  Or merely making innuendo to make a story.

      In the immortal words of the "Dick" (Cheney), "So?"

      I think George W. Bush is the perfect president to preside over the end of the world. -Marc Maron

      by Nona D Above on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:29:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Alternately, (12+ / 0-)

      ACORN isn't worried about hiding anything or the rules governing discovery in this case are not as broad as you imagine.

    •  "discovery" is a tip-off (6+ / 0-)

      ACORN is not the entity that's concerned about discover.  ACORN is fully aware that the lawsuits it settled with Household and a number of banks came about because what financial institutions fear most of all is someone taking a look at their books.

      You see, when you file a law suit against someone and a judge makes a preliminary assessment that your arguments are valid, then the defendant has to respond and, in the process of responding, demonstrate why the charges are wrong.  That's how the plaintiff discovers what's in the defendant's files.

      ACORN, as the plaintiff, is not concerned about discovery.  Getting the media to focus on that word is an effort to get ACORN to back off by people who apparently don't understand how familiar ACORN is with how civil suits work.

      You see, in a civil suit, unlike a criminal suit, if the defendant doesn't respond (remains silent, pleads not guilty), then the "win" goes to the plaintiff automatically.  On the other hand, if the plaintiff's case is frivolous, the plaintiff has to pay all costs of the defense.  So, the better side of valor is not to piss people off.

      Young Mr. O'Keefe should have known better.

      How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

      by hannah on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:32:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Actually (10+ / 0-)

      Last time I checked, you don't get a fishing expedition in discovery just because you want it.  And certainly not in federal court.  I've been litigating for nearly 2 decades now, and it just isn't as broad as you are making it out to be.

      If the lawsuit pleads only the violation of the electronic surveillance law -- a felony in Baltimore, which is why we should be demanding to know why it is that Mr. O'Keefe and Ms. Giles have not yet been arrested rather than handwringing on the assumption that ACORN has lots to hide -- then that's what discovery is going to be about, with a reasonable zone drawn around it to ensure that the parties get information that is "likely to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence."  This lawsuit is not going to open up discovery about ACORN's general practices.  No lawyer or judge would allow it.  

      And remember, discovery works both ways.  Guaranteed that the one item that will be produced in discovery is the original, unedited, videotape of what went on in Baltimore.  Every minute of it.  Which, to date, nobody other than O'Keefe and his homies have ever seen.

      Litigation is always risky but, in this case, where there is a clear violation of law (i.e. he is being sued for violating a statute prohibiting clandestine recording, which is a crime) and it is clear that even ACORN's so-called allies are not willing to fight for it to be able to continue its good work (which I'm sorry, far far outweighs the stupid acts of 5 people out of 400,000), it's a risk I probably would take as well.  The issues are very narrow, and there is a decent chance at summary judgment since, after all, we're talking about a felony in which there is no dispute that that the impact has had a multi-million impact on the organization and caused significant emotional distress in the individuals.  The damages numbers are going to be far lower, to be sure, but the real point of this litigation isn't money, it's an injunction.

      Which in this case is like shooting fish in a barrel.  Since, again, we're talking about a felony here.  And, if there is any meaningful divergence whatsoever between the reasonable interpretation of the raw footage and the interpretation which arises from the edited footage, then it will have been worth it.

      If you don't stand for something, you will go for anything. Visit Maat's Feather

      by shanikka on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:21:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The exception being (0+ / 0-)

        when the defendant files a counter suit recasting the original plaintiff in the role of defendant. Given the basis of the original complaint, as you point out, it doesn't appear that there are grounds for a counter suit in this instance.

  •  On Morning Joe (6+ / 0-)

    A lady did a report on James O'Keefe and I wanted to throw the tv out of the room. Her report let him frame himself as  "Progressive Radical", rather than as a conservative leaning plant for FOX news. His stings were against ACORN and PLanned Parenthood when he said black people are having too many babies in Ohio and the lady on the phone said ok, whatever.

    Very disappointing because I wanted to hear her question him on his illegal activities when you try to entrap people and you're not a law enforcement personnel and the fact that the one ACORN person called the police on him. That piece was a total waste.

    Yes, when I have time I watch Morning Joe because it's like a train wreck and I'd rather watch them than FOX news and I even do that once in a serious blue moon.

    •  O'Keefe is not going to answer any (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      shanikka

      questions that might incriminate him.  His lawyer should have told him that by now.

      How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

      by hannah on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:34:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This was on NBC last night, too. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      epcraig

      I posted about it upthread. It was disgusting to me that he was calling Planned Parenthood offices in Ohio about abortions, and they glossed over it without providing a reason as to his point in doing such a thing in the first place. What was he trying to prove there? The response from the person on the phone was "Okay, whatever." How is that progressive radicalism, exactly? It looks like dumbassery to me.

      "You must be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

      by missLotus on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:54:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  They admitted it (17+ / 0-)

    they don't want ACORN to recruit the poor and the disenfranchised to vote. Any questions class?

    •  I know! It's hard to even get too mad at the GOP (5+ / 0-)

      They are just honestly, openly hostile toward the poor and minorities.

      What's amazing is how our vaunted Democratic strategists and pundits live in some parallel universe where appeasing such idiocy, rather than confronting it, makes for good politics.

      •  Well, that assumes.... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TiaRachel, epcraig, frostbite, washunate

        ....that we have a real two-party system. It's more like we have a party that's openly hostile to the poor, women, and minorities and a party that pretends to oppose all that. But when it really comes down to it, they agree on more than they disagree. I really hate it when the Democrats work hard to prove Nader right.

      •  Hostility is one thing. Depriving people of (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        epcraig, lenzy1000, IreGyre

        civil rights (to vote and hold office, etc.) and cheating them of their money right and left is another.
        Predatory lending and consumer rip-offs are not a new thing.
        Depriving the poor of what little they have has been SOP for decades.

        How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

        by hannah on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:37:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  and yet, our Fearless Leaders (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          epcraig

          act shocked and amazed every time. Every time, we have to treat the radicals in the GOP as if this time they might be serious, they might be negotiating in good faith, they might have the best interests of the American people at heart.

  •  I wil send a donation (11+ / 0-)

    everyone who cares about the poor and abused people in our society should do the same.  Look, Joe you lie Wilson got $2 mill for his troubles.

  •  The real child prostitution (10+ / 0-)

    Was committed by  Blackwater and DynCorp. No one that defends Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe are outraged by the real child prostitution.

    Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

    by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:07:26 AM PDT

  •  Plain & Simple: ACORN cooked it's own goose... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    timewarp

    they need a major overhaul.  Anyone who doesn't see that is a blind partisan.  They do great work, but they also need new management.

    "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

    by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:10:21 AM PDT

    •  But Blackwater or DynCorp (16+ / 0-)

      Can go on with the raping and molesting.The fake prostitution charges are worst than the real charges.When Americans do it to foreign kids it don't count.

      Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

      by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:16:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  why (8+ / 0-)

      to better train staff on how to watch out for R wing activists trying to get film and selectively edit videos?

      They seem to do pretty well on a very limited budget, especially voter registration.

      "Don't fall or we both go" Derek Hersey

      by ban nock on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:16:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree, this is needed (4+ / 0-)

        Any effective lefty/progressive organization needs to have all sorts of training in place to watch out for agents provacateurs and other fifth-column activity by the right. The right are basically thugs and they've been doing this shit for 40 years now, if not longer. Actually, I like what they'd do in the 60s. To see if you were an infiltrator, they'd give everyone acid and the person who'd freak out would probably be FBI.

      •  No. Train staff not to find ways around laws... (0+ / 0-)

        ect.  

        "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

        by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:06:18 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  why? (4+ / 0-)

          They don't teach staff to find ways around laws now do they? What else? train staff not to commit murder? So some Provacateures got them to say bad stuff on tape, maybe that is, so what, I can get you to say it's a good thing to eat babies on tape, so what.

          Lots of registered voters on a very small budget, no wonder you folks hate them.

          "Don't fall or we both go" Derek Hersey

          by ban nock on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:15:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  If several staff members in seperate offices... (0+ / 0-)

            were committing murder, than I'd say that firm's management would probably have to reevaluate how they were hiring.  Probably the same needs to be done at ACORN.

            "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

            by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:49:18 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Plain and Simple - you heart FOX spews (8+ / 0-)

      and the rest of the RW propaganda machine.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:56:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Boo. I am discussing issue openly and you... (0+ / 0-)

        come up with that shit?  Grow up.

        "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

        by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:07:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  That's right (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        zeke L, Pozzo

        Don't dare deviate from the groupthink and think for yourself, you'll be accused of being one of "them".

        Goddess, I remember when this place used to be reality based. Now it's mob rule.

        Anyone not completely on the koolade knows that:

        1. Acorn fucked up, at least in terms of managing perception, and needed a wake-up call.
        1. The federal funding that they lost is a minor part of their budget, and will be made up by private donations.
        1. Acorn does good work in spite of management flaws and judgment errors, and that work will continue.

        And anyone whoo inverst even a little thought in it will conclude:

        1. By not being hypocrites and going on the defensive in Acorn's behalf, the Democrats in Congress have set a precedent that will make it easier to remove government funding from many other (conservative) organizations in the future.

        And it's ok to criticize Acorn for the mistakes that were made. It doesn't take make you less of a Progressive to do so. Accusing someone of being a FauxFan for doing so does makes you a hypocrite, and an anti-rationalist.

        Real Progressives think for themselves, and have a war on two fronts they have to fight against those who don't... the enemy without and the enemy within.

        "As God is my witness, I thought wingnuts could fly."

        by Niniane on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:27:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Groupthink? The groupthink was to go after Acorn (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          carlos the jackal, kefauver

          left, right and center.

          Few here defended them - other than those of us who actually know something about ACORN because we live in ACORN neighborhoods.

          "Real progressives" don't follow racist party lines.

          Mob rule?  Funny you should say that since until 3  or 4 days ago almost every diary with the exception of those from Black Kos folk was rabidly anti-Acorn.

          "Koolaide" is a term I never use.  Too many memories of Jim Jones and the tragic deaths.

          I agree there is an enemy without and an enemy within - but we probably disagree about just who the "withins" are.

          "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

          by Denise Oliver Velez on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 10:52:45 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  ah, the 'both sides are right' line (6+ / 0-)

      I'm curious. Did you advocate barring them from federal funding last year? The year before that? Do you have a list of which organizations in this country don't need new management or a major overhaul?

      I agree with you in the sense that just because an organization's mission is helping people doesn't mean the organization itself is a good one.

      But are you aware that your tone comes off as if you're simply dismissing the possibility that this episode has nothing to do with how well or poorly ACORN is run? You make it sound as if there's something unique about ACORN's lack of organizational perfection, at a time when we're surrounded by truly horrific management teams from Wall Street to Baghdad to Kabul.

      What organizations in this country shouldn't be banned from receiving federal funds?

      •  I think ACORN is a good organization... (0+ / 0-)

        but they clearly need a management overhaul.  If none of you can see that than I have nothing more I can say.

        "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

        by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:08:25 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  will you answer my questions? (6+ / 0-)

          I understand your position. You're saying they need a management overhaul. What I'm suggesting is that that is irrelevant to the particular political flap going on.

          First, have you been advocating for the removal of federal funding for ACORN before it became an issue last year?

          Second, do you have a list of organizations receiving federal funding that do not need a major overhaul?

          If this is part of a comprehensive review of federal contractors, I am very interested. Federal contracting is an area I find extremely important to clean up. On my list of the 50 worst abuses of federal contracting, ACORN wouldn't appear. Would it appear on yours? Is there something unique about ACORN management?

          In the absence of a systemic, comprehensive review, the consequence of this incident is just another right-wing smear. It's not about federal contracting. It's about class warfare.

          •  Point 1: I have not advocated... (0+ / 0-)

            for the removal of funds to ACORN before this flap because it was this flap that highlighted in the most extreme way possible the problems at ACORN.

            Point 2:  Other oganizations are not the issue here, ACORN is.  If you show me other orgainizations and their problems, I will give you an opinion.

            Point 3:  I agree that the contracting out federal jobs is a huge mistake, but that doesn't mean ACORN doesn't need management overhaul.

            "You cannot have a strong middle class without a strong labor movement." President Barack Obama

            by Jack Dublin on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:46:51 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  thanks (0+ / 0-)

              What I would say is that if it is the substance of this particular flap that renders a conclusion that ACORN is a problem organization who should be denied federal funding, then that principle has to apply to other sources of federal funds.

              From my perspective, I can't separate ACORN and put them in a vacuum. It's not a matter of if I can show other organizations. Rather, it's a matter of reams and reams of documents of evidence on many, many contractors doing far, far worse things, which have led to virtually no consequences.

              Legislation that singles out an organization, rather than an activity, is extremely dangerous, both politically and substantively. It's interesting hearing you talk about this incident as something that can be analyzed without the context of conduct that has happened at other organizations and how Congress has reacted to that conduct.

    •  talk radio machine is only reason acorn is under (0+ / 0-)

      the gun

      the GOP has 1000 radio stations blasting coordinated uncontested repetition to destroy acorn like it did van jones, clinton, gore, kerry and on and on.

      it has been trashing acorn for 2 years, using it to rationalize its own election thefts to its base.

      the only reason it gets away with it, while proportionally the GOP senate is a complete cesspool of corruption, is that the left hardly has a clue the biggest obstacle to progress is that radio monopoly and that coordinated UNCONTESTED repetition to a crowd the size of the one that voted for obama. eventually the trad media can be counted on to close the deal in favor of their owners.

      ignoring the talk radio monopoly continues to be the biggest political blunder in decades

      by certainot on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:57:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  North Carolina ACORN (19+ / 0-)

    North Carolina ACORN branch feels impact from national scandal

    North Carolina's ACORN office has had to lay off all eight of its employees in the wake of a scandal that has rocked the national office of the grass-roots organizing group....>>>

    Sad, but this shows what ACORN really is made of:

    Yet many workers have continued the past three weeks as unpaid volunteers for the nonprofit organization, reaching out to low- and moderate-income workers who might need help with issues ranging from landlord fights to high-priced mortgages.

    At AFL/CIO Convention:"We've been fighting for reform for so long that if health reform was a person, it would be eligible for Medicare!"

    by jimstaro on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:21:24 AM PDT

  •  FAIR USE: don't lift entire column (6+ / 0-)

    I was about to add to the Tip Jar until I noticed you copied the entire Myerson story verbatim. This is a NO NO not just on DK but any blog. It isn't even close to fair use citation when you lift the whole frakkin' article. Dude!

  •  Great column! Thx for posting. (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shanikka, Bob B, filby, Deoliver47, sherijr, Adept2u

    Folks can read the entire Dreier and Martin report about the media's insane reporting (including NYT, WaPo, etc.) from last fall's concocted "voter fraud" nonsense here.

  •  The right dislikes ACORN because of their voter (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    epcraig, lenzy1000, Deoliver47, Adept2u

    registration efforts. They are very effective in registering voters and getting people to the polls.

    If the right had a similar group, we would hate them.

    •  Actually the rw has had voter groups (9+ / 0-)

      who were actually indicted for fraud.

      Plus they stole an entire election.  

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 05:59:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Republicans were the ones to get convicted (5+ / 0-)

        SACRAMENTO — The owner of a firm that the California Republican Party hired to register tens of thousands of voters this year was arrested in Ontario over the weekend on suspicion of voter registration fraud.

        State and local investigators allege that Mark Jacoby fraudulently registered himself to vote at a childhood California address where he no longer lives so he would appear to meet the legal requirement that all signature gatherers be eligible to vote in California. His firm, Young Political Majors, or YPM, collects petition signatures and registers voters in California and other states.

        http://articles.latimes.com/...

        The owner of a voter-registration company pleaded guilty Tuesday to voter-registration fraud, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

        Laguna Beach resident Mark Jacoby, who collects signatures for petition drives, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor and was sentenced to three years' probation and 30 days of service with the California Department of Transportation.

        Jacoby, owner of Young Political Majors, registered to vote at Los Angeles addresses that were not his own. State law requires petition circulators to be qualified voters. Jacoby will also be required to show proof he is registered at his correct address.

        http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/...

        Fox is America's Radio Rwanda.

        by Adept2u on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:08:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  They Do Have Similar Groups. (6+ / 0-)

      And the Right has been employing voter-suppression methods for decades as well.

      The thing is, when more people vote, Democrats win, and the right hates this.

      Note to Tea-baggers: Crazy isn't a valid counter-argument!

      by kefauver on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:18:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  They do have similar groups (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      epcraig, GN1927, kefauver

      They're called megachurches.

  •  Wheels are coming off the ACORN story: (8+ / 0-)

    Seriously? Vera was fired over this, yet there is another hole shot in those <span>GOP </span>juvenile delinquents <span>ACORN </span>stories, as police confirm that Vera had contacted them over their pimp charade.

    That makes two videos completely discounted, the The head Connecticut Republican and mobile liquor sponge Healy embraced murder conspiracy idiocy that had everyone laughing at anyone that tried to push it and this recent Vera story, and their <span>ACORN </span>videos completely discounted and their whole farcical frame up looking like Swiss cheese.

    Ya think it is safe to say that all James <span>O'K</span>eefe and his <span>FOX </span>noise accomplices have accomplished is to harass a lot of <span>ACORN </span>employees? Wonder what kind of case these workers will have in court? Vera might have a case against <span>ACORN </span>for wrongful termination and certainly against <span>O'K</span>eefe and <span>FOX </span>noise for defamation of character and, likely, all kinds of other mean and nasty stuff. Never mind the trouble these <span>GOP </span>punks may be in for illegally taping <span>ACORN </span>employees in Maryland.

    These two kids are starting to look like very typical poster children for the modern day <span>GOP</span>: Incompetent and criminal in their actions.

    Any guesses on when FOX will report on the journalistic fraud their network committed?

    ePluribus Media
    Collaboration is contagious!

    by m16eib on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:02:25 AM PDT

  •  truth about [insert concept here] (11+ / 0-)

    lost in the rightwing BS.

    It seems pertinent to emphasize over and over again that truth is not a value on the far-right. When your goal is concentration of wealth and power, in fact, you pretty much have to lie all the time to everybody else to make your ideas remotely palatable.

    Republikkkons and rightwingers hate ACORN because the organization works

    Yeap. Why Democrats would treat the corporatists with any sense of seriousness, as if they're actually saying things in good faith rather than PR flackey thievery, is beyond me.

    ACORN is a perfect example to play a little divide and conquer of our own. Whose side are you on, anyway? The corporatists or the community organizers? The racists or the people working for a world beyond racial tension? Those working to make people poor or those working to lift people out of poverty?

    Or as Isaiah Poole aptly concludes.

    It is a losing strategy for Democrats and a dangerous path for America.

    Congress, stop the appeasement. Get a spine. Draw a line. Now.

    •  Get a spine. Exactly. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TiaRachel, washunate

      I feel like Democrats and their constituencies get played by this scenario over and over again: Right-wingers gin up some outrage against their political opponents and, with nary a complaint, Democratic 'leaders' furiously backpedal away from their own political allies. It really feeds into the 'spineless Dems' meme.

      I'll grant the GOP this: they stand by their people. They do it to a fault (e.g.: Sens. Vitter, Ensign) but I think a lot of people who may not even agree with the GOP on much have some grudging respect for their boneheaded propensity to protect their own. Democrats do much better when it comes to cutting off those who really deserve it, like Rep. William Jefferson. Yet, perceptions of Democrats as a party are damaged when it abandons its allies in the wake of these faux controversies.

      This whole ACORN episode reminds me of Lani Guinier from the Clinton years. It's an almost identical scenario: An unsubstantive controversy created by Republicans, followed by Clinton's unwillingness to really defend his own nominee.

      Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. - Groucho Marx

      by Joe Bob on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 08:20:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Before you get too out of breath in your (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    timewarp, Niniane

    defense of ACORN and attack on O'Keefe, you might want to consider the text of the announcement made by ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis Wednesday morning:

    "As a result of the indefensible action of a handful of our employees, I am, in consultation with ACORN's Executive Committee, immediately ordering a halt to any new intakes into ACORN's service programs until completion of an independent review. I have also communicated with ACORN's independent Advisory Council, and they will assist ACORN in naming an independent auditor and investigator to conduct a thorough review of all of the organizations relevant systems and processes.

    . . .

    "We have all been deeply disturbed by what we've seen in some of these videos.  I must say, on behalf of ACORN's Board and our Advisory Council, that we will go to whatever lengths necessary to reestablish the public trust."

    http://www.acorn.org/...

    The videos exposed something very wrong within that organization. It's not a "few bad apples". It reflects a severe lack of proper management, at best, and fundamental corruption at worst.

    This is not an isolated instance, either. There have been proven cases of embezzlement at the top, there's an intricate web of hundreds of organizations incorporated by the national chapter, many of them for-profits, the voter registration issues, etc.

    There are thousands of very well run, dedicated, financially struggling, community organizations across the country that do the same kinds of work that ACORN does -- if ACORN can't get their shit together, I would shed no tears to see those other organizations get them money instead.

    •  Hey pragprogress where's the (6+ / 0-)

      Outrage at the real raping and pedophilia committed  by Blackwater or DynCorp FOR REAL!You're full of shit.

      Think...It ain't illegal yet ! George Clinton

      by kid funkadelic on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:17:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Acorn (18+ / 0-)

      Acorn's management is taking this matter seriously since it is setting up an independent advisory council to look into these matters.  The Acorn employees in these videos have been fired or suspended.  What is wrong with that response?  

      If Acorn is so horribly managed how have they been able to grow to be the largest organization of it's kind in the US?  It has accomplished some remarkable things.

      It is smart and prudent to wait for the investigation to run its course and see what, if any, corrections are made by the Acorn management.

      All the hand wringing and right-wing BS is pointless until the facts are in and the dust has settled.

      •  I think their response is appropriate (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lenzy1000

        but they've been under fire for a while, so whatever measures they're taking now shouldn't have needed a video expose to have been spurred on. I do agree that nothing too rash should be done until everything is properly investigated.

    •  Sounds Like PR Damage Control to Me. (8+ / 0-)

      Proves they're taking responsibility for the situation. Wish some other organizations would do the same.

      Note to Tea-baggers: Crazy isn't a valid counter-argument!

      by kefauver on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:23:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The videos were frauds (13+ / 0-)

      Fox inspired frauds and they prove nothing, except progressives will swallow Fox lies when they fit their pre-existing prejudice and bias.

      United Way has had managers embezzle millions, let's take a guess why they aren't attacked.  I'll go first.  They arent chartered to help poor and non white people.

      Fox is America's Radio Rwanda.

      by Adept2u on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:34:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  so we should ban federal funding to all (8+ / 0-)

      organizations with more than about three staff?

      I agree with you, given our country's hypocritical puritan moralizing, there are specific acts that are indefensible. (From other perspectives, one might call it entrepreneurship at it's finest, but I suppose this isn't the time to get into quibbles about the awfulness that are laws against prostitution and drugs or the concept more generally of limited government.)

      But here's what I find really interesting.

      if ACORN can't get their shit together, I would shed no tears to see those other organizations get them money instead.

      Uh, which organizations? Blackwater/XE? Caci? Halliburtan/KBR? Titan? Northrup Grumman? Boeing? Lockheed Martin? I mean, what's the standard here? The nature of large organizations virtually guarantees that indefensible things will happen, and that applies across both for profit corporations and not for profit corporations.

      The ACORN response you quote is precisely what any company would do. In fact, they responded just like one would expect any defense contractor, too big to fail bank, or nonprofit organization to respond in a similar situation. Maybe what bothers you is that ACORN's leadership sounds just like other large organizations' leadership?

      I know it sounds easy. Just give federal money to the organizations that deserve it. But the act of proving you deserve it, of getting the political connections to obtain and maintain funding, is itself a process that influences an organization, again, whether it's a for profit entity or a nonprofit one.

      •  That's really stretching it to say (0+ / 0-)

        that because I think that there are other community organizations that might be more deserving, that this means that I'm in favor of the money being diverted to Haliburton. Come on.

        Believe that I do that it is not easy to get federal funds to the right groups. I work for an organization that does receive federal funds to serve the poor. I'm a manager there so I'm intimately familiar with everything that is involved in working with federal funds. It's no cakewalk.

        But that is as it should be. Progressives depends fundamentally on trust in government, and if we destroy that, we just give fuel to the Grover Norquists of the world who want to drown it in a bathtub.

        •  that's precisely why I argue the correct politics (0+ / 0-)

          is to defend ACORN, and defend them hard.

          Progressives depends fundamentally on trust in government, and if we destroy that, we just give fuel to the Grover Norquists of the world who want to drown it in a bathtub.

          If we accept the framework that these kinds of smear campaigns are legitimate, they win. This isn't about the managerial competency of ACORN, any more than Terry Schiavo was about the sanctity of life or Bill Clinton was about the sanctity of marriage or Eliot Spitzer or Max Cleland or John Kerry or Van Jones or Jeremiah Wright or Don Siegelman or whomever you want to fill in there. This is about whether or not we accept smear campaigns.

          Now as to the rest

          that because I think that there are other community organizations that might be more deserving, that this means that I'm in favor of the money being diverted to Haliburton. Come on.

          So name them. The point about mentioning for-profit companies is that their excesses are astronomically larger than ACORN. If one accepts the premise that whatever ACORN has done merits a cutoff of federal monies, name an organization that shouldn't have its federal monies cut off. For example, we could shift those dollars to the United Way of America for a year while this blows over. They can then filter the grants down through the local United Ways. Of course, that assumes we're willing to overlook things like a massive criminal enterprise run by a UWoA head...

          I think this list would be revealing, because it would eliminate all major organizations. And that's not necessarily a bad outcome, having all contracting go directly to local, small organizations. But that's not how our system works today. To single out ACORN is patently political; there's no substance there. If we respond as if there is substance there, we undermine rather than strengthen our position that federal funds should be used on things like programs that help people in poverty.

          I work for an organization that does receive federal funds to serve the poor. I'm a manager there so I'm intimately familiar with everything that is involved in working with federal funds.

          And if your organization were targeted by a smear campaign, wouldn't you want people defending you? I understand your reaction, but it strikes me as kind of the 'it can't happen here' mentality. We don't need to defend each other because this would only happen to an organization that deserves it. This won't happen to an organization that isn't run like ACORN. Etc.

          •  I think you make a lot of great points (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            washunate

            but you seem to be of the opinion that everything's political and nothing's substantive. Yes, you are correct that if it's all politics, then we should come to the defense of any organization on "our side" that is targeted. But in my experience, there are several parts politics and several parts substance to most issues of this sort, and my point is that as progressives we have to be particularly sensitive to substantive issues that might be there because it's in our interest to build trust in government.

            I am very sure that there is an infinitessimal chance that someone could walk into my organization and receive advice on how to claim underage internationally trafficked prostitutes as "dependents" for income tax purposes. Of course it "could" happen, the same way we "could" be hit by a meteor strike, but I honestly just cannot imagine it.

            WRT naming the particular community organizations that I think the money could go to instead, I could name dozens in my locality off the top of my head, but they wouldn't mean much to you. From a national perspective they may be small, but locally they are very significant -- groups with widely respected leaders, experienced organizers, sophisticated policy analysts, large and active memberships and long-standing relationships in their local communities.

            I also would disagree that giving funds to these kinds of orgs "is not how our system works today". Do a little bit of research on Community Development Block Grants, the Economic Development Administration, Legal Services Corporation, etc. Much, if not most, of these funding sources for organizations serving/organizing the poor go to smaller organizations regularly. It's not new or a big deal. The best programs are usually award funds are awarded competively, not politically.

            •  at the congressional level? absolutely (0+ / 0-)

              but you seem to be of the opinion that everything's political and nothing's substantive

              Yeap. You're suggesting that this came to light because of the civic mindedness of the people doing the videos? You're telling me Congress did an investigation, came to the conclusion that ACORN violated federal regulations, and decided the appropriate remedy was to cut off federal funding? You're saying this incident was compared to incidents at other organizations?

              I basically agree with the rest of what you say. I just would put another spin on it, another angle of looking at it.

              I am very sure that there is an infinitessimal chance that someone could walk into my organization and receive advice on how to claim underage internationally trafficked prostitutes as "dependents" for income tax purposes. Of course it "could" happen, the same way we "could" be hit by a meteor strike, but I honestly just cannot imagine it.

              You can't imagine a way that one of your staff members, volunteers, clients, or other affiliated individuals would break some moral taboo or criminal code? I'm not talking about uber-rare events like a major asteroid strike. I'm talking about things that happen to organizations; crimes and moral failings that people commit, from embezzlement to sexual assault to infidelity.

              I could name dozens in my locality off the top of my head, but they wouldn't mean much to you.

              Indeed. One of the main obstacles of funding local organizations is that brand awareness isn't very high.

              From a national perspective they may be small, but locally they are very significant -- groups with widely respected leaders, experienced organizers, sophisticated policy analysts, large and active memberships and long-standing relationships in their local communities.

              Absolutely. Which criteria exactly does ACORN lack?

              I also would disagree that giving funds to these kinds of orgs "is not how our system works today". Do a little bit of research on Community Development Block Grants, the Economic Development Administration, Legal Services Corporation, etc. Much, if not most, of these funding sources for organizations serving/organizing the poor go to smaller organizations regularly. It's not new or a big deal. The best programs are usually award funds are awarded competively, not politically.

              Ultimately, absolutely. But at the Congressional level, small orgs do not make the radar. There would be no Congressional discussion of banning funds for Wichita Resources for the Developmentally Disabled or Peoria Kids Advocacy Center or whatever million actual local organizations would benefit from federal funding. But here's the thing.

              IF ACORN wasn't serving its clients, if there were better choices, and further, if federal contracting is going to competitive outlets, then by definition, ACORN would lose its federal funding. Congressional action targeting ACORN is completely and entirely irrelevant. The ONLY substantive reason for Congress to act is if it had reason to believe that the federal agencies tasked with overseeing grants would somehow inappropriately favor ACORN. And here's really the dilemma. The more we treat our method of awarding contracts as competitive, as merit-based, the more egregiously political the assault on ACORN becomes.

              It's only if the contracting system is fundamentally flawed that Congress would have any substantive reasons to take up action about a particular contractor.

              Finally, I would emphasize that the nature of social service funding, in particular, the extremely limited funds relative to other areas of federal contracting, put organizations in hypercompetitive mode with each other. You end up with a lot of centralized systems precisely because a small, lone organization cannot, in practice, break into state and federal awards. As you start needing a big name partner, or support letters from city agencies, or regional boards, and so forth, that naturally politicizes the process. The organizations who try to stay nonpartisan, who focus resources on programs over marketing, are almost definitionally not as close to the politicians who influence a lot of these partner outlets or are direct sub-grantees for federal programs.

              •  Incidentally, I think your last paragraph (0+ / 0-)

                about the difficulties of obtaining government financing for smaller, nonpartisan organizations is spot-on, and quite astute. You are exactly right, IMHO.

                But when I say "substantive" as opposed to "political" I'm not referring to the motives of the filmmakers or even of those in Congress, but to the actual issues within the organization. Some organizations are better run and more ethical, than others.

                That's just the world as it is, not as we might like it to be. That's why I'm focused on the substantive issue. Either they are in fact a well-run, ethical organization, relatively-speaking, or they are not. If they are, we should support them, and if they are not, then we should not. Of course, nothing is black and white either, and I recognize that, but the matter of degree is still important enough. But as progressives, we should be intensely concerned that federal funds predominantly go to those that are better run, and more ethical.

                I'm willing to entertain all evidence to the contrary, but from what I've been able to glean from not only the videos, but also other stories, they are not a well-run, ethical organization, relatively-speaking. This is why I brought up my own organization as a point of comparison.

                Of course, I can imagine instances of bad conduct within mye organization. People who acted unethically, people who embezzled money, people who failed to treat the clients with respect (which parenthetically no one could accuse ACORN of after the tapes!!!), etc. But I think the reason the ACORN tapes have had so much "legs" is that the employees did not appear to even believe that they were doing anything wrong. That's what's unbelievable about it; they acted like it was just par for the course to be giving advice to a pimp about how to hide income from the IRS, fraudelently obtain a mortgage, and claim underage, foreign prostitutes as "dependents".

                They weren't whispering. They weren't going into a back room, alone. They weren't trying to get a cut in the action themselves. That points to management and organizational culture, not individual instances of wrongdoing. Good management and an ethical organizational culture should be of paramount interest to us as progressives.

    •  Try this (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TiaRachel, kefauver, sherijr

      Rotary Club is a pretty good thing to bring up, because it's really more tilted towards wealthier donors.  At least, that's the way it has seemed to me.  

      Yet, here we have three separate instances of embezzlement at a rotary club.

      What should happen to the Rotary Club?

      http://news.moneycentral.msn.com/...

      http://www.wsbt.com/...

      http://www.kirotv.com/...

      "Bow down before my terrifying ability as a Trusted User to halfway hide a comment 5 times in a 24 hour period!"

      by otto on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:23:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Maybe they shouldn't get federal funds (0+ / 0-)

        How's that?

        •  Okay (0+ / 0-)

          If that's what makes you happy.

          Should they have access to schools?  They have programs in operation in public schools all over the country.

          Their programs are designed for a number of purposes but some of them seem to be interested in civics.

          That's an interesting problem, wouldn't you say?  

          Should an organization that can't seem to control its members, and can't keep them from breaking the law be able to operate in our public school system?

          How about the Boys and Girls Club?  

          Do you have any idea about the number of people who are arrested for things they did in their capacity as B and G Club employees?

          All of these organizations have the same problems.  All of them have the same problems as for profit businesses.

          It's just that in this case, someone is willing to listen to a Fox News sting about a couple employees and apply it to the organization as a whole.

          "Bow down before my terrifying ability as a Trusted User to halfway hide a comment 5 times in a 24 hour period!"

          by otto on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 08:40:53 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think those are all fair questions (0+ / 0-)

            And hopefully there'll be an opportunity for that kind of discussion to take place in the appropriate forums. My point would be that we should take this kind of thing very seriously because virtually all of the progressive agenda depends heavily on public trust in government. We should always be and appear to be extremely vigilant in making sure that every public dollar is spent in the best way possible, with full transparency and accountability.

            Whether it's ACORN or Haliburton, the same principle should apply.

    •  Except we have no evidence the videos are genuine (0+ / 0-)

      Since they won't release the original tapes, the whole thing could easily be a hoax.  They have the resources, and the motive to make such a hoax.

      "I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."

      by Futuristic Dreamer on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:22:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've got just the plan (2+ / 0-)

    ACORN just needs to change its name.

    ACORN will now be known as "HG."

    There.  Now they can get federal funding and nobody will know that anything happened.

    And Erik Prince will be on the board.  

    I wonder what ACORN would be like with Prince, Armey, or Chuck Norris on the board.

    "Bow down before my terrifying ability as a Trusted User to halfway hide a comment 5 times in a 24 hour period!"

    by otto on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 06:35:20 AM PDT

  •  I Agree 100% (5+ / 0-)

    I think if ACORN is defunded for having a few rotten apples in their organization than every other organization (including contractors) who had employees who committed bad deeds should also be defunded (Blackwater, Boeing, etc).

  •  If ACORN can be busted for (9+ / 0-)

    ...aiding a prostitution ring, then surely O'Keefe and Giles should be busted for running a prostitution ring.

      Since, apparently, we are supposed to ignore the fact that the prostitution ring didn't actually exist.

      Somebody remind me why O'Keefe isn't in jail for fraud?

  •  War on ACORN is part of a class war that the (10+ / 0-)

    elites, including those in the media, are waging against the poor.

    Why the desire to go after ACORN?  Because they empower poor people, with the vote, among other things.

    As long as ACORN is dealing with this in an appropriate way, I am proud to stand with them while they are under attack.

    I urge everyone to donate to them here:
    http://www.acorn.org

    •  Exactly correct ! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Futuristic Dreamer

      Republicans don't hate poor people.  They are completely indifferent to poor people - as long as they stay in their place.  But poor people who vote - now that's a different story!  They HATE poor people who vote.

      Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

      by rmx2630 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 08:58:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  first thing I did when I found out the truth (5+ / 0-)

    about the sting squad was donate to ACORN.  

  •  More of this please (4+ / 0-)

    You know, I get sick and tired of people running to throw a progressive organization under the bus just because the wingnuts target it and find something.

    After all, I am sure that some Rotary Club members cheated on their taxes; do we go after them?

    (note: my wife is a member of Rotary)

    Anyway, the wingnuts can target ACORN all they want, but this liberal isn't going to run away.

    Not this time.

    When liberals saw 9-11, we wondered how we could make the country safe. When conservatives saw 9-11, they saw an investment opportunity.

    by onanyes on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 08:22:30 AM PDT

  •  Your argument is self-contradictory (0+ / 0-)

    If Republicans only want the rich to vote, wouldn't it stand to reason that they would want more rich people?  If so, what purpose would they have in attempting to keep the poor "as poor as possible?"

    •  Since when did Republicans use logic? (0+ / 0-)

      "I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."

      by Futuristic Dreamer on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:01:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's the "Logic of Scarcity" (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Futuristic Dreamer

        They think wealth is a static quantity, so in order for them to have more, someone else must have less.

        That this is a flagrant contradiction of their "free-market" ideology never crosses their alleged minds.

        If it's
        Not your body
        Then it's
        Not your choice
        AND it's
        None of your damn business!

        by TheOtherMaven on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:06:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think anyone (0+ / 0-)

          thinks that wealth is a static quality.  Hence both parties support growth.  They just differ as to what is the best way to achieve it.

          •  Oh it's you again Dgrth (0+ / 0-)

            I'm afraid that either they DO think that way, or they think that it's OK to grab mega-millions of dollars and let mere pennies trickle down to the mob.

            Neither is any kind of recipe for a stable or peaceful society. But they don't care about that either as long as they get theirs NOW.

            If it's
            Not your body
            Then it's
            Not your choice
            AND it's
            None of your damn business!

            by TheOtherMaven on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:33:03 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's a very different argument (0+ / 0-)

              But the point is that if Republicans were convinced that the rich vote Republican (and I am not sure they do, since in 2008 Obama won 52% of those making 200K+) they would want more rich people.

      •  People who want votes (0+ / 0-)

        know how to get them.

        •  LOL (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kefauver

          Actually they know how not get them for the other side.

          Between that and claiming you believe your eyes when you see something on Fox news, I don't know if you're horribly naive, or just insincere.

          It isn't only wealthy people who vote Republican, it's wealthy people and people who are brainwashed by their propaganda.  Brainwashing people with propaganda is a lot easier than making more wealthy people.

          "I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent."

          by Futuristic Dreamer on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:19:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  You don't understand (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kefauver, Futuristic Dreamer

      The Republican objective is to keep poor people as powerless as possible.  They must do this because the Republicans are a natural minority.  One way to keep the poor powerless is to keep them destitute; another is to prevent them from voting; another is to put them in prison and give them a criminal record; another is to attack and demonize advocates for the poor.

      Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

      by rmx2630 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:16:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I am not sure that Republicans are (0+ / 0-)

        a natural minority.  Given that self-identified conservatives outnumber self-identified liberals by about 2:1, it would seem that Republicans are at least an even bet.  (Recall that many self-identified Democrats in the South are actually conservative and actually vote Republican).

        •  First of all, Republicans are NOT conservative (0+ / 0-)

          Secondly, self-identified Republicans are a minority.  

          As the radical G.W. Bush administration demonstrated, the Republican Party will abandon Conservatism when Radicalism will give them the power they want.  The true Republican constituency are the moneyed elite - that is the natural minority.  All others: social conservatives; the economic conservatives; the religious right; the neo-cons; the government hating libertarians; the fetus worshipers; the Teabaggers; are just tools given power and molded through the money provided by the real enduring power behind the Republican Party - just like the rabid anti-communists were tools.

          (BTW can you provide a cite for your 2:1 claim?  I did some checking - seems way off.)

          Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

          by rmx2630 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 10:34:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Again, in 2008 Obama (0+ / 0-)

            actually won the "moneyed elite," while McCain carried the middle class.  McCain won those making 50-75K 49% to 48%, those making 100-150K by 51% to 485 and those making 150-200K by 50% to 48%.  Together those 3 groups constituted 41% of the electorate.  McCain lost the 75-100K group, which is an additional 15% of electorate by 51-48.  The Republican Party of today is not the Republican Party of 1940s with its Northeastern bluebloods.

            As to the 2:1 ratio.  Latest Gallup poll 40% to 21%.  http://www.gallup.com/...

            And again, whether or not the Republican party is "truly" conservative, is not the issue.  I think there is little dispute that they are MORE conservative than the Democratic Party.  Hence, if conservative outnumber liberals (as the polls show) then Republican party cannot be a "natural minority."

            •  Thanks for providing the citation (0+ / 0-)

              And I agree that it does indicate that self-identified conservatives out number self-identified liberals by a 2 to 1 margin.  

              You might be interested in the following survey which expanded the response choices to include "progressive" and "libertarian".

              State of American Political Ideology, 2009 (pdf)

              Q.59/60 Which of the following do you feel best describes your political perspective?

              Total Progressive      16
              Total Liberal              15
              Moderate                  29
              Total Conservative     34
              Total Libertarian          2
              (Other)                       2
              (Don’t know/Refused)    3

              Now, I should not have used such an imprecise term as "moneyed elite".  I consider all the income categories you listed (50-75K, 100-150K, 75-100K) as solidly middle class.  You may recall when Orange County pastor Rick Warren asked McCain and Obama to define "rich".  Obama said the bottom cut-off was $250,000 while McCain said $5,000,000.  When I use the term, I am referring to those who predominately do not work for wages or salaries - I am referring to top 5% who own 60% of the total wealth in the US.  

              Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

              by rmx2630 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 01:27:04 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  That's an interesting poll (0+ / 0-)

                but I wonder what the difference is between "liberal" and "progressive" and what "total" adds to it.

                •  I don't know the difference (0+ / 0-)

                  But perhaps, for some otherwise left leaning people there is a stigma attached to the term "liberal".

                  There is an obvious distinction between "libertarian" and "conservative" and I don't understand why pollsters don't routinely include it.

                  Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

                  by rmx2630 on Fri Sep 25, 2009 at 07:54:22 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

  •  I don't see any... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Futuristic Dreamer

    ..hope for ACORN.

    The traditional media has swallowed the Fixed News framing of ACORN hook, line & sinker.

    Of course, the Democrats in congress are not going to stand up for ACORN (if they will not stand up for health care reform with a public option, what chance do you think ACORN has?).

    Lastly, the White House will use ACORN as a sacrifical lamb, hoping if they toss the wingnuts the red meat of ACORN, that will deflect attention off Obama (of course, the White House is too naive to realize the  fundamental goal of the anti-ACORN wingnuts is to link the implosion of ACORN to Obama).

    This all began when Obama would not stand up for Van Jones.  Tossing Van Jones under the bus just set the Beckerheads into a feeding frenzy.

    At this point, literally the only allies ACORN has are left wing bloggers on the Internet.  And I don't think that's enough.

    Karl Rove was a Czar.

    by wyvern on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:01:04 AM PDT

    •  It began during the campaign (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rmx2630

      Staffers who "voluntarily" resigned, Rev. Wright thrown under the bus, caving on FISA - we had plenty of indications of what kind of President Obama was going to be. Unfortunately there was no acceptable alternative - but those who bought into the hype about Obama being the Great Progressive Hope were just setting themselves up for more and bigger disappointments.

      Me, I figure that if he manages to get 20% of what he speechified about during the campaign passed, he'll be doing better than I expected. (10%, he'd be doing about as much as I expected.)

      It is, and always was, up to US to make the changes we want to see.

      If it's
      Not your body
      Then it's
      Not your choice
      AND it's
      None of your damn business!

      by TheOtherMaven on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:17:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You forgot about poor people (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rmx2630, kefauver, Futuristic Dreamer

      You know, the folks ACORN serves and from whom most of their membership dues come.  They're still with ACORN even if Congress isn't.

    •  I think Acorn will be OK (0+ / 0-)

      The elimination of government funding won;t kill them.

      The real danger would have been if the Justice Department was still in the hands of Bush-Rove-Cheney.

      Patriotism is the conviction that your country is superior to all others because you were born in it. - George Bernard Shaw

      by rmx2630 on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 10:44:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for exposing the truth about ACORN. I was (3+ / 0-)

    always pretty concerned about the attention they were getting from the right wing propaganda station called "Fox News."  I figured they must be doing something right to be targeted so relentlessly and you've exposed the real "Fox News" agenda very clearly for all to see.  Thanks!

  •  It's a witch hunt. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rmx2630, kefauver, Futuristic Dreamer

    And the sad part of it is, no prominent Democrat has the guts to stand up to it.   Just like when they voted to censure Move-On, only this time its worse.

    "Give me a water board, Dick Cheney, and one hour, and I'll have him confess to the Sharon Tate murders." -Jesse Ventura

    by Beelzebud on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:52:13 AM PDT

  •  If the run of the mill GOP disenfranchisement (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rmx2630, kefauver

    (see Florida 2000) got half as much major media attention as ACORN, the country might have saved itself from 8 years of war, debt, death, and torture.

    "Just relax and let the hooks do their work." -- Ned Flanders

    by Pangloss on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 09:56:57 AM PDT

  •  Huffington Post made a great observation today... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chigh

    People are outraged that a handful of ACORN employees are accused of helping a fake prostitute and her fake pimp.  Meanwhile, military contractor Dyn Corp used taxpayer money to run a real prostitution ring featuring 12-15 year-old-girls in Bosnia AND then got ANOTHER contract and did it again in Iraq.  

    Yesterday over on Politico, where I like to fight the stupidity, I was accused of defending underage prostitution.  So this is what I posted today:

    Speaking of fake outrage, I have a suggestion for the people who are so upset about ACORN's federal funding.  Instead of directing all this outrage at a group that receives an average of $3.5 million a year in federal funding and that had 3 or 4 employees apprently provide advice to fake prostitute and her fake pimp (something they had never been accused of doing before),  may I suggest you turn your outrage instead towards Dyn Corp?  This military contractor used your taxpayer money in Bosnia to run a real prostitution ring featuring 12-15 year-old girls.  Even worse, they got another taxpayer-funded contract for Iraq and did it again.  This time somebody died because one of the armored cars (paid for with taxpayer money) was being used to transport prostitutes from Kuwait while somebody doing real work was forced to use a non-armored car.  THAT story deserves your outrage!

  •  fox is nothing without the talk radio monopoly (0+ / 0-)

    to prechew their material all day to   a much larger crowd- you just can't create myths and pass on lies on tv and print like those 1000 uncontested radio stations can

    Let's cut through the rightwing, Fox-generated bullshit

    ignoring the talk radio monopoly continues to be the biggest political blunder in decades

    by certainot on Thu Sep 24, 2009 at 07:01:08 PM PDT

skybluewater, Malacandra, C S McCrum, JekyllnHyde, zeke L, Joe Bob, rick, Phoenix Woman, murphy, SarahLee, Trendar, Geenius at Wrok, GreenSooner, Kryptik, TrueBlueMajority, whataboutbob, theboz, Wintermute, CleverNickName, eeff, dsb, Mumon, dlcox1958, bumblebums, hubcap, joynow, bronte17, missLotus, DickCheneyBeforeHeDicksYou, guyute16, OCD, marsbardem, ask, metal prophet, Geonomist, shanikka, gayntom, mkfarkus, exconservative, sngmama, Nate Roberts, Wrench44, nuttymango, psnyder, danthrax, TiaRachel, GrainofSand, epcraig, peternight, laughingriver, GN1927, nika7k, betson08, awkward007, Democratic Hawk, Sembtex, Curt Matlock, Lefty Mama, tomjones, jcrit, lyvwyr101, rmx2630, oortdust, humphrey, Bluesee, marina, Tinfoil Hat, m16eib, baccaruda, CTPatriot, arnott, Bill Section 147, kefauver, 5oclockshadow, GUGA, goldrick, jimstaro, jcitybone, Wufacta, Little Lulu, dspivak, alisonc, serrano, kkjohnson, danger durden, begone, WB Reeves, LeighAnn, Do Tell, Pinko Elephant, myboo, Kingsmeg, cybersaur, BlueInARedState, Themistoclea, Kimball Cross, ActivistGuy, Gorette, DarkestHour, gatorcog, imabluemerkin, NC Dem, happy camper, plf515, MarciaJ720, ER Doc, middleagedhousewife, onionjim, CA Nana, Timothy J, means are the ends, Hedwig, Eryk, Nulwee, Cartoon Messiah, ammasdarling, pfiore8, asilomar, Fredly, Loudoun County Dem, possum, akdude6016, vbdietz, jnhobbs, jhop7, pioneer111, MadAsHellMaddie, uciguy30, JDWolverton, Dem in the heart of Texas, mconvente, Scioto, AnnieJo, DraftChickenHawks, TheFatLadySings, spacejam, Involuntary Exile, filby, ajr111240, wonderful world, rssrai, mnguy66, stillwaters, allie123, Nona D Above, pilotmama, SpiffPeters, Futuristic Dreamer, lissablack, statsone, Fiddlegirl, Psychotronicman, An Affirming Flame, Partisan Progressive, slaney black, velvet blasphemy, bigmikek7, DefendOurConstitution, Mercuriousss, followyourbliss, uno beagle, Denise Oliver Velez, IreGyre, stevenwag, maxzj05, sherijr, Nonconformist, Adept2u, rossir, LaughingPlanet, drainflake77, princss6, broadwayliberty, wren400, elginblt, ItsSimpleSimon, AJ in Camden, sharonsz, Weaselina, UNCCTF, washunate, Floande, Nada Lemming, Dems in 08, moondance, Olon, poorbuster, stonedoubt, tkwasny, grottoes, Hoghead99, bamabikeguy, green plum, tardis10, lizard people, ilovecheese, pensivelady, MinistryOfTruth, kid funkadelic, hands in clay USA, happenstance, glower, Dakit, boredwitnuts, RoninTalgar

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site