Tuesday, February 24, 2015

James O'Keefe is back. Am I the only one who smells sulphur and brimstone?

I'm sure you recall James O'Keefe, the young, Karl Rove-esque poltical operator who destroyed ACORN with one of the slimiest stunts in the history of political chicanery. Brad Friedman has devoted a number of exquisitely-researched posts to O'Keefe's antics: See here and here and here.

I've written about him too: Here and here and here

More than once, O'Keefe has been exposed as a kind of combination of Professor Harold Hill and G. Gordon Liddy. He once tried to bug a senator's office, and his ACORN "sting" led to a $100,000 settlement being leveled against him. The fact that O'Keefe was able to pay that fine without much sweat tells us much about his operation.

Something new is a-brewin' in O'Keefe-land. The following comes from a right-wing website...
Conservative journalist filmmaker James O’Keefe on Saturday tweeted an ominous message to those who follow him and his influential work.

“We have a story we’re going to release this coming week and I've never thought about this before but I am afraid for my life on this one,” O'Keefe announced Saturday afternoon.
We have a story we’re going to release this coming week and I've never thought about this before but I am afraid for my life on this one.

— James O'Keefe (@JamesOKeefeIII) February 21, 2015
What the story is one can only speculate, but for this one to be particularly risky in O'Keefe's estimation is saying something.
I have a bad feeling about this. And no, I do not have any fears that something bad will happen to Scurvy Jimmie. My fear is that he will do something particularly churlish.

The first comment on said right-wing website is worth reprinting here...
His right-wing admirers don’t seem to mind that O’Keefe’s short but storied career has been defined by a series of political stunts shot through with racial resentment. Now an activist organization that monitors hate groups has produced a photo of O’Keefe at a 2006 conference on “Race and Conservatism” that featured leading white nationalists. The photo, first published Jan. 30 on the Web site of the anti-racism group One People’s Project, shows O’Keefe at the gathering, which was so controversial even the ultra-right Leadership Institute, which employed O’Keefe at the time, withdrew its backing.
A peach of a fellow, Jimmy is.

On a related note:
Many of you will recall the film version of the novel Starship Troopers, by the quasi-fascist science fiction author Robert Heinlein. In that novel, only those who have performed military service, or some other dangerous duty, are granted the right to vote.

Believe it or not, USA Today editorialist Glenn Harlan Reynolds (a law prof at the University of Tennessee) feels that we should adopt that very system.

This is an absurd, extremist proposal. Nevertheless, and purely as a thought experiment, let us consider the advantages of such an arrangement.

The Reynolds/Heinlein plan would have kept Dick Cheney out of politics. Buh-bye, Sarah Palin. Adieu, Mitt Romney. Sayonara, Rush Limbaugh. Auf widersehen, James O'Keefe. Arrivederci, Rudolph Giuliani. Adios, Bill O'Reilly. Beat it, Ann Coulter.

Most conservative pundits would be out of a gig. Nearly every One Percenter in the land would be kept out of the voting booths -- and, one would hope, out of the political system altogether.

Amusingly, I would have the right to vote, despite never having served in the military. Remember, we are following Heinlein's rules. He made an allowance for anyone who has volunteered for a hazardous medical experiment -- and believe it or not, I once did just that.

Ah, the foolishness of youth...!

I won't tell you the details, but I can tell that the doctor required me to keep urine samples for several weeks after my release from the hospital. (Why? I'm not sure. He said something about wanting to see if the radioactivity left my body.) The samples were stored in the fridge, in emptied plastic orange juice containers. One night, while half-asleep, I stumbled into the kitchen and...

...and maybe I shouldn't finish that story.

Your humble host keeps unfolding like a flower, does he not? If ever you meet me, do not make me angry. You won't like me when I'm angry.
I believe ACORN simply changed its name.

Cause of Action and their List of ACORN allies and Rebrands
BOTTOM shelf, Joseph! He said keep the samples on the bottom shelf!
Joseph, you are just so ahead of the game. Alfred Webre (conspiracy therapist) believes that the liquid in your refrigerator may be the cure all.......... when drank (drunk?).

Anyway, you seem a little radioactive to me (in a good way, in a good way).

BTW, Isis died............. on Downton Abbey.
O'Keefe has on at least one occasion been used to take down a Republican. In Wisconsin, the Koch brothers' front, the "Club For Growth", hired him to take out a senior Republican State Senator who was opposed to the expansion of school vouchers at the expense of public schools. He stalked the pol at his favorite watering hole and captured him on video, drunkenly bragging about a plan to set up an illegal PAC for the upcoming campaign. The Senator declined to run for reelection and was replaced by a bought-and-paid-for Tea Bagger.

Money Trail Revealed: Did Eric O'Keefe Pay James O'Keefe for Hatchet Job on Wisconsin GOP Senate President? | Mary Bottari

Disobedience to Scott Walker is harshly punished within the Wisconsin Republican party.
The simple fact is that if the operation someone like O'Keefe or Jeffrey Epstein is in support of the overall fascist agenda, then no legitimate punishment will be exacted.

If however, someone endeavors in opposition to the fascist agenda, their punishment will be swift, severe, and disproportional to the alleged crime, i.e. Edward Snowden, Chelsea (nah Bradley) Manning, and Aaron Swartz.
Joseph, you served as a disseminator of truth during the years of the neo-fascist Buschist administration at a time when few people were willing to stick their necks out to oppose lawless war, torture, and the construction of the surveillance state.

For that hazardous duty you should have a generous pension for the rest of your life. Thank you for your service. Someday maybe an Oscar-winning movie will be made about your life.

Gareth, any state legislator that goes around getting drunk in public deserves what he gets, IMHO. Nursing a few beers with your homeys is one thing. Getting so plastered that you hang yourself is another.

I will wait with baited breath for O'Keefe's automobile to crash him at 60 mph into a palm tree.

Anonymous 3:16 PM:

In Wisconsin, being an alcoholic is practically a requirement of the job for state legislators. Politics floats on a sea of beer and brandy. The guy O'Keefe took out was a major A-hole, so no tears were shed, but it scared the shit out of the other Republicans, because he was the top dog. Nary a peep has been heard from anyone since. It's ein Reich, ein Fuhrer time in the Badger state.
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