Author's posts

They shoot ponies don’t they?

I think we’ve all had too many of these conversations…

(Thanks to Gnocchi over at Firedoglake for making this fantastic video)

The real victory tonight: The Blue Dogs take a beating.

So far, it looks like nearly half the Blue Dog Dems have been kicked out of office.  That’s a much higher percentage of Dems than the Progressive Caucus lost tonight.  I think it speaks loudly to why the Dems got their butts kicked today.  This wasn’t Americans turning to the Republicans, which polls show Americans hate worse than Dems.  This was Americans turning away from the Blue Dogs.  The ones who sold us out to the corporatists.

This opens up some serious opportunities for progressives if we can capitalize on them two years from now.  Without incumbency to aid them, the Dem Machine – which will be bringing more Blue Dogs to the table to replace the ones they lost – will have to win primaries against progressive alternatives in every Blue Dog seat.

Two years from now, progressives can make huge gains at the cost of the corporatists.  Provided, of course, that we can insure the elections aren’t rigged and we can come up with actual progressives to run fopr those Blue Dog seats.

Then, when we take back Congress, we won’t have the Blue Dogs aiding and abetting Republican obstructionism.  That’s more than just a silver lining in the dark cloud of todays elections.  That’s an opportunity for Progressives to take the Democratic Party back from Wall Street.

Anthony Weiner needs a Reality Pill

Today Anthony Weiner D-NY had the unmitigated gall as to defend Israels actions in international waters.

This was about instigating an altercation and they succeeded,” Weiner, one of Israel’s leading allies in Congress, told me. He insisted that the activists piloting the flotilla were offered other alternatives by Israel, such as docking the ship and transporting the supplies to Gaza by land.

“If you want to instigate a conflict with the Israeli navy it isn’t hard to do,” Weiner continued. “They were offered alternatives. Instead they chose to sail into the teeth of an internationally recognized blockade.”

Pushed on whether the Israeli response, which killed at least nine, was disproportionate, Weiner wouldn’t acknowledge it. “It’s always easy to criticize the response to a hostile act, but for a week at least the Israelis were trying to prevent this altercation,” Weiner said, adding that the Israelis had been “set upon.”

There are so many things wrong with his depiction of events where do I begin?

This was about instigating an altercation and they succeeded.

No, Mr. Weiner, this was about bringing aid to Gaza citizens who are currently being starved to death by Israel in what some call the New Warsaw Ghetto.  In case you missed it Mr. Weiner, there is an extreme humanitarian crisis in the Gaza strip.  The economy has collapsed.  They are experiencing 45% unemployment.  Places that were destroyed by Israeli bombs over a year ago are still sitting in ruins.  Electricity is sporadic.  The people of Gaza are being subjected to a slow starvation that amounts to genocide.

If you weren’t so emotionally invested in Israel, perhaps you could see this.

He insisted that the activists piloting the flotilla were offered other alternatives by Israel, such as docking the ship and transporting the supplies to Gaza by land.

Which was unacceptable Mr. Weiner because Israel refuses to allow parts to replace broken down farming equipment into the strip.  It seems not allowing the people of Gaza to farm is part of the planned genocide by slow starvation planned for the New Warsaw Ghetto.  Back up generators have failed because Israel won’t allow those things to pass through by land either.  Hundreds ofsick people have died because of this travesty alone.  It seems that is also part of the planned genocide for the New Warsaw Ghetto.

“If you want to instigate a conflict with the Israeli navy it isn’t hard to do,” Weiner continued.  

So you’re argument is that a shipload of people armed with sticks and stones, trying to help end Israels New Warsaw Ghetto are “instigating a conflict” and so they deserved what they got?  Really Mr.Weiner?  Are you wearing such rose-colored glasses when you look at Israel that you believe this crock?

Oh, but you’re not done are you Mr. Weiner?

“They were offered alternatives. Instead they chose to sail into the teeth of an internationally recognized blockade.”

Excuse me, Mr. Weiner, but in case you missed it, this act of international terrorism happened in international waters.  You aren’t proposing that Israel has a right to commit acts in violation of international law in order to proceed with its plans to commit genocide in the New Warsaw Ghetto are you?  Are you really so blinded by loyalty to Israel that you think it is acceptable for Israel to attack ships sailing under foreign flags in international waters?

Yes, Mr. Weiner, I think you are and I think that’s a shame Mr. Weiner because most of the time you’re a pretty decent Democrat.

“It’s always easy to criticize the response to a hostile act, but for a week at least the Israelis were trying to prevent this altercation,” Weiner said, adding that the Israelis had been “set upon.”

 Mr. Weiner, you need to remember your own people’s history, your own people’s Warsaw Ghetto.  Perhaps then, you’d realize that trying to relieve the siege of Gaza is anythign except a hostile act.  As for being “set upon”, it was the activists trying to put an end to Israels genocide that were set upon, Mr. Wiener.

All Israel had to do to avoid conflict was not raid the flotilla.

We don’t need anymore congressmen who believe black is white, war is peace, good is evil Mr. Weiner.  We had enough of that with the neocons who, by the way, were working hand in hand with Mr. Netenyahu throughout the 90’s and into this century.  You really need to step back from this Mr. Weiner, it’s obvious you’ve got too much emotional investment in the state of Israel to see clearly what that state has become under the far right wing Likud and Mr. Netenyahu.  It’s obvious that when it comes to Israel, you can’t see that the neocons have taken over and you can’t see that they’re no better than the Nazi’s.

It’s really a shame, Mr. Weiner.  I thought you were better than that.

Mr. Weiner, what do you call THIS other than the New Warsaw Ghetto:

Medical ethics violated

The contribution made by medical personnel in making decisions in respect to the Palestinian diet in Gaza is grave and violates medical ethics. It is reminiscent of a situation whereby doctors monitor torture, believing that examining the tortured individual before and during the interrogation protects him from irreversible damages. The principles of medical ethics require medical teams to act on behalf of patients, as Gaza had not been struck by drought. Malnutrition there had not been forced by nature. We are dealing with a case of deliberate starvation (or “minimal diet”) that can be stopped at any given moment.

Word games making pretense of not crossing red lines are invalid in a reality whereby pregnant women, babies, and children suffer from anemia, whose damage to their development is known. And did anyone look into the development of a child who grows up within this food pyramid? Will these security experts be kind enough to reveal to us the intimate connection between Israel’s security and an anemic Palestinian child?


Around 46 per cent of Gaza and West Bank households are “food insecure” or in danger of becoming so, according to a UN report on the impact of conflict and the global boycott of the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority.

The UN report says 34 per cent of households – with income below $1.68 per day and/or showing decreasing food expenditures – are “food insecure”. The WFP officially defines “food security” as “the ability of a household to produce and/or access at all times the minimum food needed for a healthy and active life”. It goes on to say that 12 per cent of households are “vulnerable” to food insecurity.

And does this remind anyone of how the Nazi’s stripped the Jews of all their wealth?

the report points out that some action taken by families to continue to feed themselves – including the sale of land, jewellery and other assets” – will have an “irreversible impact on livelihoods”.

What is the purpose of this:

The UN report comes against a background in which a 2004 survey of Palestinian households showed a “slow but steady” growth in actual malnutrition – as measured by reduced growth, vitamin deficiencies, anaemia and other indicators – among a minority of the population. The 2004 survey found “stunting” rates of abnormal height-to-body ratio at just under 10 per cent.

except an attempt by right wing extremists in control of the Israeli government to commit atrocities against the Palestinian peoples by slowly starving an entire peoples to death?  How is this not slow and deliberate genocide?  How is this NOT the New Warsaw Ghetto, just made more palatable by the slow, subtle nature of its inevitable “Solution” to the Palestinian problem?

Dear BP Execs: Today I met your potential lynch mob

Today I was at a retail store and something I’ve never seen before happened.  Mind you, I’ve seen riots in the 60’s.  Killings.  Protesters shooting it out with the police and holding a courthouse under seige for a week until the National Guard came in.  But I’ve not seen a lynch mob spontaneously erupt until today.  Someone mentioned the catastrophe in the Gulf.  Someone else said that the BP Oil Execs should all be killed.  Over 2 dozen people in that store all stopped what they were doing and began to agree.  Someone said that if the government won’t kill them, the people of the United States should rise up and do it themselves.  This got a lot of suddenly riled up people who only 30 seconds ago were quietly shopping to agree quite loudly and vocally.  “Yeah!  We should go down there and kill every goddamned one of them!”  someone shouted and everyone agreed.

There was an 80 year old man agreeing.  So were a couple of little old ladies.  Young people and old, people from all walks of life were suddenly gathered around the checkout stand and they were all talking about the Gulf Catastrophe and what it meant and how they not only had had enough of the government kowtowing to the corporations but “goddamnit if the Government won’t execute them, we Americans should!”

This wasn’t in the middle of rural teabag country, this was in a Seattle suburb and I was surrounded by mostly left leaning, ordinary American citizens who had suddenly found that everyone else felt the same way they did and everyone in that store was PISSED.

No, Pissed doesn’t do their mood justice.  They were outraged and FURIOUS and THEY WANTED BLOOD.  They wanted the BP executives DEAD.

I thought to myself: so this is what a lynch mob looks like.

Now normally, I’d be aghast.   But I remembered what Ghandi said.  He said that his non-violent methods would have never worked against the fascists.  He was right then and it’s still true today.  Peace and Love are NOT going to save our planet from these monsters, these psychopaths who have risen to the top of the corporate world because mega-corporations themselves are psychopaths and only a psychopath could possibly run one successfully. So I found myself agreeing with them  wholeheartedly.  These creeps deserve to die for what they did and the government better damned well do it.

I wonder if this scene has repeated itself elsewhere in the nation?  Is this nation on the edge of exploding in rage at our politicians and the corporate masters who own them?

I think America might be reaching its breaking point.

Today Daily Kos officially jumped the shark.

There used to be a time when the Daily Kos was the place to go for reality-based content.  When quality writers like Emptywheel, Buhdydharma and Toquedeville could be found regularly.  Then came the Democratic Primaries and things got really ugly, really fast.  It was as if the place became infested with wingnuts, the way you were attacked for being progressive.  Many fled, never to be seen again.

Don’t get me wrong, there are still quality writers to be found at Daily Kos.  Guys like MinistryofTruth and Crashing Vor.  It’s just that the site has been steadily drifting away from being reality-based for quite a few years now.

And today, they officially jumped the shark.

North Korea on brink of war-Is this distracting Obama from oil spill?

We remain preoccupied with criticizing Obama for not personally overseeing a oil spill.  Maybe Obama has been paying attention to other immediate crises.

Evidently, the Obama supporters will now desperately grasp for any straw to explain why Obama isn’t getting the job done in the Gulf.

Now, it’s not that some diarist made some pathetic excuse for Obama’s weak handling of the Gulf disaster that makes this an official Daily Kos Jumps the Shark event.  No. It’s that this diary actually reached the reclist without a smidgeon of actual, you know, reality-based content.  It’s rise to reclist glory was based soley upon the fact that it was a lame attempt to make excuses for Obama – and a subtle attempt to push for war with North Korea.  Because THAT, my friends, would be the real distraction.  A second Korean war would distract Americans from the Gulf disaster.

First off, the diarist gives us the MSM condensed version of the showdown developing on the Korean peninsula:

Yesterday, North Korea cut off diplomatic ties to South Korea.  That is right, a nuclear power has aggressively attacked their major military rival, killing and injuring dozens and now it is escalating.

Ohhhh scary!  Not a word of context.  No explanation as to why North Korea suddenly attacked a South Korean warship, why North Korea cut off diplomatic ties.  No mention of what motivated either side in this latest showdown.

Instead, the diarist feeds us disinformation:

A sick old man is thought to be creating this crisis so his son can take over when he dies.  Kim Jong-il has enough atomic fuel for 8 weapons and is trying to bolster the credentials of his designated heir, Kim Jeong-un, 27

Ohhh, more WMD talk, I’m scared!  Yes, there’s a link to this totally unfounded assumption, but the link doesn’t even suggest that Kim is creating this crisis to bolster his son.  It’s like the diarist pulled that idea wholly out of his own ass.

Then the diarist ends on a subtle warmongering note.

We are on a precipice and one of our loyal allies needs our support.  But while we really don’t want a war on three fronts, Obama may be forced to do something dramatic in the near future.  Today South Korea conducted antisubmarine drills off the coast of North Korea, and the agreement to end accidental attacks was officially abandoned by South Korea (North Korea abandoned it yesterday.)

Want to know what’s REALLY going on in the Korean peninsula and find out the REAL reason North Korea sank a South Korean naval vessel?  You know, a Reality-Based discussion of what is happening over there?  I’ll even give you an alternative to sanctions and sabre rattling and WAR that would probably satisfy both sides and make the peninsula a far more peaceful place for years to come.

This is the diary I posted at Daily Kos in response:

To understand why North Korea sank a South Korean navy vessel, one must be aware of the circumstances surrounding the Battle of Daecheong.  Likely, few, if any, on this website has ever heard of it.

The Battle of Daecheong took place in November 10, 2009 near Daecheong Island at the Northern Line Limit.  The Northern Limit Line was set by U.S. forces in 1953 but has never been recognized by North Korea nor is it mentioned in the 1953 Armistice Agreement.  Initially, it was drawn to prevent South Korea from crossing north, but has since been changed to prevent North Korea from crossing south.

Over the last half century, North Korean fishing boats have routinely crossed the line, many times escorted by N.K. patrol boats.  Prior to the Battle of Daecheong, there had been two minor skirmishes along the border, the first and second Battles of Yeonpyeong, in 1999 and 2002 respectively.

Here is a description of the Battle of Daecheong:

The incident began around 11:27 am when a North Korean navy patrol boat crossed down through the NLL even though boats from the South Korean navy warned them twice. After one more warning announcement, one of the South Korean patrol boats fired a warning shot. In response, the North Korean boat began firing upon the South Korean ship. This resulted in a short exchange of fire between the sides. The North Korea vessel expended approximately 50 rounds, and the South Korean craft returned fire with 200 rounds.

The Korean Central News Agency, the official news agency of North Korea, accused the South Korean Navy of provoking the confrontation, reporting that “the North side let a patrol boat of the Navy of the KPA on routine guard duty promptly go into action to confirm an unidentified object that intruded into the waters of its side. When the patrol boat was sailing back after confirming the object at about 11: 20 a group of warships of the South Korean forces chased it and perpetrated such a grave provocation as firing at it. The patrol boat of the North side, which has been always combat-ready, lost no time to deal a prompt retaliatory blow at the provokers. Much flurried by this, the group of warships of the South Korean forces hastily took to flight to the waters of their side.”


After the battle, the South Korea patrol boat had suffered only superficial damage (reportedly 15 bullet marks on the ship’s side) with no casualties, while the North Korea patrol boat was left partially destroyed. Though there was no official announcement from North Korea, a news agency in South Korea reported a rumor that North Korea suffered four casualties (1 KIA / 3 WIA).[6] On the other hand, a defector said about 10 North Korean sailors were killed in action.

Not to justify the North Koreans, but simply to give this situation the proper context, one could just as easily claim that these waters are in North Korea as South Korea.  In fact, one can better understand the domestic pressures upon Kim Jong-il if one considers that from the North Korean perspective the Battle of Daecheong represented the attack of one of their vessels in their own territory.

This is why it was theorized afterwards that General Kim Myong-Guk was demoted after the battle.

The JoongAng Daily published photos of General Kim Myong-Guk released last June and this week. The earlier picture showed Kim with the four stars of a full general, while this week’s photos showed just the three stars of a colonel-general….

…One theory is that General Kim was demoted over North Korea’s beating in the last naval clash with the South.

Now spring forward to March 26,2010.  The Chenoan goes down near the Northern Limit Line near the South Korean island of Baengnyeong.  A torpedo attack is suspected.

Then in April, North Korea celebrates the 78th Anniversary of the Korean People’s Army

The training well showed the decisive resolution and merciless striking force of the KPA soldiers replete with the fighting spirit to annihilate the aggressors at one stroke, if they dare intrude into the inviolable land, sea and sky of the DPRK even an inch, and take thousand-fold revenge upon them.

and who is in attendance and sporting a fourth star again?  General Kim Myong Guk.

A key general in the North Korean Army has been returned to four-star rank after a demotion earlier this year, and South Korean government and intelligence officials are scrambling to find out why.

It is not until May that the Chenoan Report comes out:

The South Korean corvette Cheonan was split in two by the shockwave and bubble-jet effect resulting from the underwater explosion of a 250 kg torpedo.

The parts dredged up from the sea floor where the Cheonan was sunk match the schematics of a weapon offered for sale by North Korea, the CHT-02D torpedo.

A hand-written Korean inscription, translating to “No. 1,” was found on one such part. The same marking appears on a North Korean torpedo found by the South seven years ago.

A few small submarines and a mother ship supporting them left a North Korean naval base in the West [i.e., Yellow] Sea 2-3 days prior to the attack and returned to port 2-3 days after the attack.”

No other country had a submarine in the area at the time.

It becomes obvious that North Korea was behind the attack on the Chenoan, that the Battle of Daecheong was seen by North Korea as an attack on a NK vessel in NK waters and that Gen. Kim Myong Guk was given a chance to redeem himself by avenging that attack.

The key to resolving this issue peacefully is not to ratchet up sabre rattling on both sides.  The key to resolving further incidents like this is to resolve the boundary dispute created by the U.S. unilaterally imposed demarcation of the Northern Limit Line.  Until both sides agree upon who controls these disputed waters, confrontations like this are going to continue and war, not peace, will be the outcome.  Ideally, a buffer zone should be set up.  One that keeps both navies away from each other but would allow fishing vessels to safely operate within it.

Now obviously, President Obama knows everything I have just detailed above.  His intelligence sources would have told him what was really happening.  He knows that the sinking of the Chenoan was simply tit for tat, not the first move of a nuclear confrontation.

And Obama knows that the South Korean response – blasting propaganda across the DMZ and enforcing new sanctions – was an act of escalation that was met in kind by the North.

Of course, spreading word that there is no cause for war with Korea, that there are solutions available to prevent war and that this attack didn’t come out of the blue, as the MSM would have Americans believe, doesn’t interest the inhabitants over at Daily Kos.  Reality-based reporting only proves that, no, this isn’t a distraction to Obama, in fact, at best, it’s only going to serve as a distraction FOR Obama by taking the focus off the worst manmade disaster in human history.

And as if to rub salt in Daily Kos wounds, on this same day Obama tells reporters that:

“I take responsibility. It is my job to make sure that everything is done to shut this down,” Obama declared at a news conference in the East Room of the White House.  Obama said many critics failed to realize “this has been our highest priority.”

“My job right now is just to make sure everybody in the Gulf understands: This is what I wake up to in the morning, and this is what I go to bed at night thinking about. The spill.”

“There shouldn’t be any confusion here. The federal government is fully engaged,” he said, underscoring his central point.

Funny, how differently the world looks when your feet are firmly planted in reality – instead of jumping over a shark.

So NOW we need to be realistic about the issues of operating in a mile of water?

So said BP CEO Tony Hayward yesterday when he was discussing the chances of a successful end to the worst manmade disaster in history.

BP’s top officer downplayed the likelihood that the desperate effort will succeed in actually sealing the pipe, which is spewing hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude into the Gulf each day.

“If it was on land we would have a very high confidence of success, but… we need to be realistic about the issues around operating in a mile of water,” BP CEO Tony Hayward told reporters on Monday.

Ahh, yes, NOW we need to be realistic about those issues.  Were you being realistic about the issues around operating in a mile of water when you applied for the rights to drill offshore in the Gulf of Mexico Mr. Hayward?

Was the government being realistic in April?

Davy Crockett, Daily Kos and Net Warfare Multiplicity.

My wife is descended from Davy Crockett so naturally all our kids have wanted to watch the old Disney shows about him and both Alamo movies.  We let our kids know that most of what they see is complete BS.  One bit of Disney BS is the scene in the wilderness where Crockett and Bowie drive off a much larger enemy force with a little trick the two of them have gotten adept at.  They can fire and reload their guns much more quickly than normal men and can do so on the run.  They run from hiding spot to hiding spot, firing rapidly and giving the impression to the enemy that they are up against a much larger fighting force than they really are.  This forces the enemy to retreat when, if they knew they were only facing two men, they’d charge in and rapidly defeat them.

I don’t know if there is a word for this tactic, but it is being used extensively against the left on the internet today.  If someone can point out the name for this, great, but for now I’m going to call it Multiplied Duplicity, or Multiplicity for short.  It is the tactic of making it seem that there is a large group of people who are on one side of an issue when in fact, it is only a small handful of people using multiple identities and who are usually being paid to work full time giving the impression they are part of a large movement which in reality doesn’t exist.

I first heard about Multiplicity about 8-10 years ago from Joe Lyles of Conceptual Guerrilla.  It seems that when Lyles was in college earning his law degree he belonged to the Young Republicans.  It was there that he learned a standard tactic of theirs was to assault bulletin boards on the fledgling internet with multiple user ids and “work the web” to give the illusion that the vast majority of internet users were conservatives.  This is why the internet seemed, in the early years, to be dominated by conservatives and their talking points.  The truth, it seems, was that all those conservatives were actually just small groups of Young Republicans across the nation coordinating on a local level.

Lyles termed these guys the first Net Warriors.  This was the beginning of Net Warfare.  From day one Multiplicity was their standard tactic.  

What drew me into Joe Lyles circle was the idea of becoming a Net Warrior myself.  Joe had abandoned the right when his eyes had opened to the truth of their phoney conservative philosophy.  He realized that conservatives only believed in one thing:  Cheap labor.  Everything else was BS.  He exposed the truth behind every conservative meme in his excellent article “Defeat the Right in 3 Minutes.”.  It was this article that first brought him to my attention.  It was on an older website of his that I, along with a host of other progressives, first learned all the tricks of becoming Net Warriors for the left.  We would go onto websites back in the day when people were afraid to admit they were liberals – remember those days?  They weren’t that long ago – and take over the forums by challenging the conservatives and working together as a team.  We employed multiple user ids and gave the impression that a great many progressives were there who – gasp! – actually disagreed with the “conventional wisdom” of the right.

This was rather unheard of at that time on the internet.  A wonderful thing began to happen thanks to our efforts.  People began to stop lurking on these websites and began to actually speak up.  Our presence had emboldened them.  Until we came along, most people were so brutally put down, name called, mocked and derided that no one had the courage to ever post there.  The conservatives had full reign to spew their lying spin on everything.  Once we challenged – and defeated – their hollow talking points, people began to feel they weren’t alone.  They were no longer afraid to agree that they thought the conservatives were full of shit.

By the time we left a forum, it no longer needed us anymore.  There were plenty of progressives there who’d found their voices and were no longer intimidated into silence.

Which brings us to Daily Kos.  The tactics being used at Daily Kos are the same tactics that the conservatives have always used.  Ad hominem attacks, mocking the poster, derisive put downs, straw man arguments.  Anything but actually addressing the issues.  The purpose of which is to drive away progressives and silence those who stay so that only their spin dominates the website.

The thing is, just like when the Young Republicans created the first Net Warriors, these Konservassacks (conservative Kossacks) aren’t really as numerous as they would lead you to believe.  They are practicing Multiplicity.  How do I know this?  I’ve been watching them do it for many, many years and over that time they’ve made more than enough mistakes to give themselves away.  Consider the following:

A:  The Double Diary Incident.  I was probably the only non-Konservassack who witnessed the Double Diary Incident.  It was about two or three years ago, before Obama was elected.  For a very brief time, maybe ten minutes, two diaries with the exact same titles hit the rec list just minutes after each had been posted.  Both had to do with a single payer healthcare rally.  Both came out one right after the other.  Who could have foreseen such a coincidence?  Certainly not the Konservassacks.  They evidently knew that one diary about the rally was coming out with that name.  Unfortunately, the other dairy about the rally with the exact same name came out just a minute or two before theirs did.  The first diary was definately pro-single payer.  The second diary was the exact opposite.  It was full of spin that single payer wasn’t ever going to happen and supported us going for the public option instead.  In short, it was a hit piece against the single payer rally.

Naturally, I got curious and looked up who had recced each diary and found out that 90% of the people who’d recced the first diary had also recced the second.  That seemed fishy to me as anyone who recced the first diary would hate the second one.  Sure enough, by the time I’d finished checking out the second diaries rec list and went back to the main page, the first diary had already fallen off the rec list.  So I rechecked the first diaries rec list and all those people who had recced both diaries had unrecommended the pro single payer diary.

This all happened within minutes of both diaries being posted.  Why is the timing of this so pertinent?  Because of the logistics of such a rapid response. If a large group of about 80-100 people had all known to rec, or been asked to rec, a certain anti-single payer diary and then mistakenly recced the wrong one, there would have been enough confusion caused that it would have taken a bit of time to sort out what had happened, get the word out and then rectify the situation.  But the response time here was far too rapid for that.  It took about one minute for me to call up the second diaries rec list and see it was almost identical to the first and in that short time, all the people who’d erroneously recced the wrong diary and rectified that situation.

That means one of two things:  There were 80-100 people all sitting in an office somewhere paid no doubt by someone with a corporate agenda, or – which is more likely – there were 20 or so people, each with 5 alternate identities, sitting in an office somewhere, paid no doubt by someone with a corporate agenda, using good ole Multiplicity tactics to make it look like a large number of people believed that the public option was a better idea than sticking to our guns and demanding single payer.

B:  There have been many instances, not just with me, but I’ve read others on this website note the same thing:  People they are arguing with on Daily Kos forget that they’ve changed their names and continue the arguement under different personas.  It happens often enough to know that sock puppetry is going on there.  

A funny thing about sock puppetry on DKos.  When my wife finally registered there about a year ago, I immediately got a message that sock puppetry would not be tolerated and I had been banned for it.  I had to explain that – though the IP address was mine – the account belonged to my wife.  I said they should have asked me before banning me.  So Meteor Blades undid my ban and my wife now has an account.  Meteor stated that there was so much sock puppetry going on that they couldn’t respond to everyone guilty of it and just auto-banned them instead.

So this means one of four things must be true:

1:  There is no Multiplicity going on at DKos because Multiplicity requires sock puppetry.  Therefore, in the Double Diary Incident, there would have to be an office full of 80-100 people actually working together to pull off what they did that day.  I don’t believe this, however.

2:  Multiplicity is going on at DKos and those responsbile have some way to mask their IP addresses.  There are tons of IP Masking programs out there.  No doubt, DKos can’t guard against all of them.

3:  Multiplicity is going on at DKos and those responsible have multiple PC’s at their disposal.  I doubt this as simply using masked IPs would be less expensive.

4:  Multiplicity is going on at DKos and DKos is in on it.  This has to be a seriously considered possibility as Markos has admitted he worked for the CIA when he started up the Daily Kos website.  It is possible – and when one looks back on the history of the Daily Kos it certainly seems to be – that the Daily Kos was set up from day one to be an anti-populist website who’s purpose was to undermine the left.

So whichever of the above are true, what this means is that a small group of people are actively working to give the impression that a much larger group has taken hold of the Daily Kos using the tactic of Multiplicity.  If the average reader really understood that only a few people are basically holding an entire net community hostage – and by extension an entire political movement- they’d abandon the site en masse or else demand that the moderators do something to stop this deceitful manipulation.

The question is:  is DKos in on it?

The only way to answer that question is to first prove that Multiplicity is happening.  To do that might take no less than a paid hacker to break in and track down the culprits to their lair.  The next time Blackwaterdogs “Obama is God” shoots to the reclist, or a diary against Obama hits the rec list and immediately after, the diary railing against it shoots to the rec list, we’d need someone to investigate all those names on the rec list and see if something fishy is going on.

Naturally, it would be preferable if the moderators did this, as they obviously have the power to do so, but we can’t trust them to be truthful.  So unless a hacker traces those IP addresses, we simply have no way to prove it’s happening.  And of course, we can’t have hackers breaking into websites.  But should we somehow manage to come up with the evidence, then we’d know once and for all if DKos is in on it or if an outside force is simply using an age old (in internet years) tactic against us once again.  

Either way, the progressive movement would be better off being aware of such tactics and proceeding accordingly.

A Failure to Plan is a Plan to Fail: A challenge to the progressive netroots.

Cross-posted @ Firedoglake

A failure to plan is a plan to fail. So said a poster here on a different diary today and it got me to thinking. What is the progressive plan for dealing with the Conservadems in Congress who’ve sold us out time and again since the Reagan years?


Yeah, that’s the problem. The debate always comes down to this: Vote Dem or let the Repugs rule. And that’s what happens. Dems lose their base in disgust and Repugs take over. I’m just as guilty. I’ve voted Nader every election until the chance to elect a black man president outweighed the knowledge that this guy was being foisted on us by the corporatocracy.

Instead of worrying about polls, or what the Dems should be doing or what Obama isn’t doing, we should be wholly focused on getting progressives past their primary challenges and replacing Conservadems on the ballot. But we aren’t.

Case in point: Alexi Giannoulias.

It’s hard to believe this is the candidate whom the Democrats wanted as their nominee. As Ben Smith dryly noted, Giannoulias “is about as un-changey as you get.” The Republicans are obviously delighted to have such a target-rich opponent. I suspect this will be another seat added to the political gurus’ “leans Republican” lists.

Where was coverage of the primary? Where was the grassroots effort to stop this guy from getting the nomination? Where was there even mention that this election was coming up?