Let's give the "Coffee Party" an accurate name- the "Latte League"

The MSM is trying to create an alternative to the organic "Tea Party" movement on the Right.

So, to great fanfare, it has unveiled "the Coffee Party"

The slogan is “Wake Up and Stand Up.” The mission statement declares that the federal government is “not the enemy of the people, but the expression of our collective will, and that we must participate in the democratic process in order to address the challenges we face as Americans.”

So, while we are on the topic of collective will, these guys gonna help derail the ram-through health care deform bill despised by the public even in blue states? Surely you jest. 

This movement has been described as a "political parasite" on the Tea Partiers and Ms. Park's background--unlike the often apolitical resume of the local Tea Party organizers--is replete with ties to Obama and the New York Times.  Note to Ms. Park. It's hard to find common ground with folks you are on the record insulting.

I've seen this sort of crap before. It's ersatz and top-down crap masquerading as home-growth activism.  It's a "Blue Moon" marketing gambit by the folks who brought you Obama, Inc.

And to the extent this has any authenticity, it's either going to be like the nattering blue hair women at the library doing their League of Women Voters gig ordering us to recycle everything and send the bills for political campaigns to the taxpayer---you know..high minded, "thoughful" advocacy of oxtrodox liberalism.  Or it's going to be the mindless millenials at Starbucks wondering what went wrong with Teh Won who hasn't calmed the oceans yet.  And wondering if they can get a federal bailout to buy Dave Matthews concert tickets.

This isn't a serious political movement. This is the Latte League.

I suggest we leave them to their NPR and their Volvos and pay them no more mind.

More proof Scott Brown can't win?

The Worcester Telegram, the daily newspaper in MA's 2nd largest city, has endorsed Scott Brown

Given the serious issues that face our nation, and the deep ideological divides that have riven Congress, we believe that state Sen. Scott Brown is the best choice to reinvigorate Massachusetts' voice on Capitol Hill....

Just to prove they are not some NewsCorp outfit, they are owned by the NY Times Corp. and previously endorsed both Barack Obama and John Kerry.

I'm sure this can and will be as easily dismissed as polling results , a deluge of absentee ballots in conservative parts of the Commonwealth, and a run on Scott Brown campaign signs.

I know that the Republicans are supposed to just roll over in the Blue States for politically correct lefties. I apologize if this script is not being followed this time out.

Useful Idiocy

Ever heard the term useful idiots? Thousands of them gathered in the streets of D.C. at the height of the Iraq War. Pink-bedizened. Face paint. Bush/Hitler signs… strutting and fretting their 15 minutes on the stage. They were incapable of engaging in rational discussion. Arguments began with an effigy and ended with a ‘No Blood for Oil’ sign. America eventually turned against the War. Perhaps the idiots were useful. But when it came to “rational discourse,” there was no outcry from the establishment left.

These days, useful idiots comprise a small percentage of the town hall meetings and tea-parties of the center-right. This subset is loud, angry and not particularly conversant on the subject of health care. But they may be useful. Early on, the MSM tried to magnify this minority as a means of discrediting all opposition to healthcare nationalization. Turns out, they were more useful to the right for whipping up the base and expanding opposition to healthcare nationalization despite the MSM. For better or worse, people did a double-take.

Now that these idiots are being somewhat effective, the left (and even some libertarians) are whining about “rational discourse.” Part of me longs for an intelligent conversation. But as one who has witnessed way too much useful idiocy on the left – from Code Pink to the Hope and Change sheeple – I am no longer terribly eager to explain the nuances of end-of-life consultation now that the tables have turned. Democracy is warty. And tit was made for tat.

When it comes down to it, the right has been offering good ideas for healthcare reform for years—one of which was completely sandbagged in 2006. Saner rightwing voices are being marginalized by the MSM. The MSM's favorite narrative is that the right is being “obstructionist,” offering no reform ideas of their own. Nothing could be further from the truth. Now that a merry band of useful idiots is helping shut down the left’s aspirations for a “public option,” I’m okay with some of these folks being right for the wrong reasons. Until the left and the MSM are willing to a) acknowledge our reform ideas exist, b) discuss them intelligently before the public, and c) stop framing genuine opposition as nothing but a bunch of birthers, racists and troglodytes, I for one will sit back and smile whenever I hear a useful idiot say something like “death panel.” 

(Note: none of this is meant as my weighing on on the World Net Daily controversy. Some forms of idiocy are not useful.)

Palin & Conservatives Have No Obligation to Media Elitists

“As a public official, I expect criticism and I expect to be held accountable for how I govern, but the personal, salacious nature of recent reporting, and often the refusal of the media to correct obvious mistakes, unfortunately discredits too many in journalism today, making it difficult for many Americans to believe what they see in the media.” . . .Sarah Palin

 Something has happened to the political landscape that most potential conservative candidates aren’t even aware of yet. An astonishing, unintended “change” has occurred that will give candidates from the Right a definite advantage if they choose to take it. A definite chink in the Left’s armor. And that’s a dilemma because charging in and taking advantage of this new breach in the Left’s parapet will take courage and conviction. Assets that even the best GOP politicians are generally in short supply of, especially in the higher echelons. With the exception of a couple of “bold ones” the rest are all playing it safe. Over cautious. So what is this significant “thing” that has happened? Simple, the biased, autocratic, domineering Main Stream Media (MSM) has clearly given away its position and, as a result, they can no longer be called objective or respectable. “What?” you say. “you’re telling us something we’ve known for years.”   True, but the difference is that today, there are literally volumes written that prove, and expose, without a shadow of a doubt, the hatreds and prejudices that the MSM have for Conservatives.   It’s no longer just the lone, pioneer voice of Limbaugh talking about it on the radio. Its now categorized and documented by a myriad of learned experts and available for any conservative politician to reference. At their finger tips. Now the possibility of a surprise ambush by the MSM is almost non-existent. This is huge. Conservatives can now make a legitimate case for a major break in relations with the various elements of the MSM. So, what does this mean?   Is it now time to go on the attack? Hit the MSM head on? Kick them where it hurts?   No!  We can learn from beloved former Washington State governor, the late Dixie Lee Ray who took a confrontational strategy with the state media. When a pet pig had a litter of piglets, she even went so far as to name each of the piglets after some of her worst adversaries in the press. Dixie Lee was a brilliant scientist but she made some serious missteps in her handling of the media which cost her a re-election. Dixie was a no-nonsense gal, God rest her soul.   Not enough like her, sadly.  Were I advising a contemporary conservative politician vying for a high public office, I’d tell them to take a look at how ** Danish politician, Fogh Rasmussen handled the situation when an aggressive, left-leaning member of the Danish media began to pressure him to grant an interview. In reality it was nothing but an ambush and Fogh knew it. But he didn’t counter attack. No, Mr. Rasmussen made a simple public statement: “it is an infringement of my personal freedom if I, myself, may not decide who I will speak to on a day to day basis”. Surprisingly, that was the end of it. Fogh simply ignored them, stuck to his principles and kept quiet.  I’m sure he then focused on his constituents. Perfect. A simple, respectful refusal – and then ignore them.  Of course we can expect no such civility in our own political process. Maybe from the Conservative side but you can bet that the MSM counterpart will not reciprocate.    You see, the MSM considers itself a legitimate and legal part of that process. When in fact they’re nothing more than a business trying to make money and they’ve been given far too much access. They have no more rights than any other business other than their individual right to vote.    But they won’t see it that way. Which is why any conservative politician who attempts to quietly banish them from “our side” of the political process will set off an unprecedented political firestorm.    And this will be an opportunity for Conservative politicians to, once and for all, forget George Bush’s disgusting “New Tone” and grow a spine. Regain some respect and stop pandering. Politicians with a backbone? What a concept.   They’ll have to learn just as Riot Police must learn. Riot Police are taught to keep their fear, anger and emotions under control. Not an easy task when being verbally attacked by a mob. Only when the rioters cross a certain line and actually assault the police, are they allowed to retaliate. Until then, they remain silent with plexiglass shields locked. The tuning-out and expulsion of the MSM from the conservative side of the political process will cause an intellectual riot of sorts. Depriving these spoiled MSM brats of what they think they’re entitled to will cause the expected destructive conflagration. Something to definitely be prepared for. There may even be some small skirmishes. Extra security might be required for restricted conservative functions so that disruptions don’t occur. Yea, its going to take some real backbone on our part! We’ve catered to these Constitution-hating leftists far too long and they’ve become accustomed to having their way. But it is the MSM, through their own misconduct that have forfeited these privileges. Privileges are not rights and can be taken away. What would be the positive effects of this sort of decisive and courageous action on the part of Movement Conservatives?   Think of the time spent by Conservative politicians preparing for the hostile gauntlet that they require themselves to run through every political season. They must shift their focus away from the Conservative Base and give rapt attention to the enemy in the MSM. They must become as “walking encyclopedias”. With knowledge and the correct pronunciation of every little tinhorn dictator around the world and the tiny nation they lord over. They’re required to know minute details on all subjects or risk looking foolish on national TV. The irony is that the vicious MSM will see to it that they look foolish anyway. No matter how well prepared they are. Can we remember the ’08 GOP debates? The time it takes to maintain this charade totally shifts the politicians focus away from connecting and bonding with the actual voting Base that will, hopefully, elect them. Exactly as the Left has designed and implemented it!   Such a tragedy that Conservatives have repeatedly fallen into this trap and allowed themselves to be manipulated to this extent.  It has been Sarah Palin who has taken the worst of the full frontal attacks/barrages of the MSM and certain other well organized, well financed elements on the Left. This fact is telling.  If Sarah decides to pursue the 2012 POTUS, she should consider a departure from the traditional/conventional forms of campaigning and that will also include banishment of the MSM. Going straight to the populace or working through “friendlies” of which there are ample. She can learn much from the mistakes of Fred Thompson and Duncan Hunter.   Sarah will need to skirt around the Left’s Maginot Line. She should also avoid, like the plague, the well traveled thoroughfares that other GOP candidates choose to travel upon. They’re lined with trip wires, booby traps and snipers peering down from tree tops. Sarah can reach the same destination by traveling off road along dirt roads and game trails. Metaphorically speaking, of course.  Darvin Dowdy   **Danish politician – copy/paste this url:


Is CT's Attorney General trying to force the press to "chill out" over Dodd?

You can tell when a liberal politician is in deep sushi by two things:

a) The MSM starts buying into the criticism that conservatives and libertarians made for months prior to their discovery

b) The wounded target's political allies "circle the wagons" and start returning fire against the officeholder's critics

We are witnessing this scenario today unfolding in Connecticut

Led by intrepid columnist Kevin Rennie, the Hartford Courant has raised the decible level of dissatisfaction with Dodd, culminating with calling his AIG bonus blunder a "flip-flop" in a front page headline and having a liberal writer urge Dodd not to see re-election.

Since the Courant's reversal of fortune on a CT political icon whom they have supported for decades, the CT Democratic establishment did what it does best. Circle the wagons around their wounded leader.  They've been doing a "dog and pony" show around the state where all the leading Democrats stand behind the embattled Dodd.

Including Attorney General Dick Blumenthal

Remember him. Once he was very upset with Countrywide Lending's predatory practices.

But when it came to Chris Dodd's deal with Countrywide, he gave the Senator a clean bill of health.

"We subpoena documents. We don't voluntarily necessarily accept representations made to us by companies like Countrywide," Blumenthal responded. "Chris Dodd has disclosed those documents, he has disclosed those facts and I believe the people of Connecticut will accept his explanation and elect him in 2010." 

Hmm, Dick, I know I went to some jock colleges unlike you and your  Harvard+ Yale pedigree. But, hmmm. a) you never subpoenaed Dodd's documents.  and b) Dodd didn;t really disclose them--unless one hour of letting handpicked reporters view documents constitutes "disclosure" (Hmm...I'll try that next time I have a discovery dispute with the AG's office).

Here's what the Wall Street Journal had to say about Blumenthal's defense of Dodd.  

Inappropriate doesn't begin to describe Mr. Blumenthal's appearance this week on Hartford's WFSB-TV. The AG compared Mr. Dodd, who was due to receive an estimated savings of $75,000 over the life of his two VIP mortgage loans, to borrowers allegedly duped by unscrupulous lenders. Mr. Blumenthal claimed that "there's no evidence of wrongdoing on [Mr. Dodd's] part any more than victims who were misled or deceived by Countrywide."

But I merely set the table here. What just happened really shows to what lengths the Democrats will use their levers of power to protect their own.

As we all well know, the Tribune Company is in bankruptcy.  The Tribune owns the Courant and the Fox TV affiliate in Hartford, Channel 61. To survive the recession, the Tribune proposes to combine the news staff of the Courant and Fox 61.  

And who's against this. Chris Dodd's loyal lackey Dick Blumenthal

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal wrote the owner of Tribune Wednesday saying that the merger of the Hartford Courant, WTIC-TV, and WTXX-TV may violate the Federal Communications Commissions ban on a company owning a television station and newspaper in the same market.

“I am concerned that allowing these entities to fully merge into one news and information operation goes well beyond what the FCC intended when it granted Tribune a two-year limited waiver,” Blumenthal wrote in this letter to Tribune Co. CEO Sam Zell.

Hmm, Dick, in case you haven;t noticed the newspaper business is not. hmm, in the best of health these days. Maybe saving the Courant might be...a good thing.

So what to make of AG Blumenthal's sudden concern over media consolidation?   

Could this be an effort to suggest that fewer problems for Senator Dodd might mean fewer problems for the Courant's business plan?

We've never seen Democratic politicians manipulate the regulatory process to benefit their interests, now have we?

Perhaps Ivy League lawyer Blumenthal ought to reacquaint himself with this concept I learned at my non-elite law school

Think there's been a "chilling effect'" placed on the Courant's future coverage of Senator Dodd ?

I do.  We'll see how interested the Left is in the First Amendment once liberals decide to chill conservatives. My guess. Not a peep. 


A good night's sleep caused me to remember this prior incident when a media person got a little too hostile at Senator Dodd, and his corporate masters decided to "self-sanction" themselves --no doubt so as not to draw attention to folks who might bring in the FCC to scour their affairs.I wrote about it at the time.   Here's some FoxNews coverage at the time

It's the Money, the Media, the Groundswell/Grassroots Effort, and the Leadership

It's the Money, the Media, the Groundswell/Grassroots Effort, and the Leadership


I have been listening and reading to a vast array of political experts/pundits and their ideas regarding what has gone wrong with the Republican Party.  Many are spot on and a few are way off base in my opinion.  I am of the opinion that things do need to change, but not our core conservative ideology.

As I have mentioned in replies to other bloggers on this site, this country is 232 years old.  Over this span of time, just about every concept or political ideology has been tried.  Some have been dismal failures and others have been resounding successes.  At the end of the day, there are not many NEW ideas rather, there are new ways to package, present, and communicate these ideas to the American electorate.  It also helps to have a leader that inspires the electorate and can communicate these ideas to the masses with charisma and vision.

I challenge anyone to educate me as to what Obama has campaigned or promised that is new.  Tell me what new ideas that Obama has presented that hasn't already been tried from Clinton to Carter to FDR.  Obama has simply sold a bag of goods that has already been done before or has tried to be done in one fashion or another (HilaryCare for example).  At best, one could only cite tidbits of change or newness with respect to a broader idea. 

First and foremost we need to acknowledge the failures of the RINO leadership we have had in Washington for the past 8 years and we need a comprehensive national strategy with a concerted focus on fund raising, the media, and a major grassroots effort unlike any ever accomplished in the Republican Party.  Record fund raising is a must to counter the Obama Machine and to counter the liberal media establishment.  The need for the grassroots effort should be obvious.

This will not be easy.  There has been a lot of trust lost in the Republican Party and for good reason.  I personally have friends and relatives who are ready to give money and help organize, but everyone is sitting back to see how the dust settles and who they feel they can trust with the future of the party.  It also makes it difficult when we have created a system where nearly 50% of the electorate pay zero federal income taxes and have no stake in the federal system whatsoever.  Further, with the Dems likely to push hard for amnesty for the illegals, we will likely lose the Hispanic vote for the foreseeable future. Where do you suppose these votes will go?? Consequently, we have to face the fact that we will constantly be working for the 5-7 percenters out there who always seem to be on the fence (at least for the short to mid term). 

The Republican Party must rebuild the party with its core conservative values but with new methodologies for communicating our ideas and creating a groundswell of grass roots activity that we can all believe.  We need to communicate our ideas and ideology to the American people and stop acting like Democrats (McCain, Powel, Bloomberg, and Schwarzenegger are prime examples).  We need to defines ourselves and not allow the liberal establishment to define the Republican Party.  We must have leaders with the charisma to communicate to the masses a singular voice of the party and a unique ability to raise much needed campaign funds.  Over time, with success, we can regain the Reagan American Spirit we so fondly remember.


Doug Peterson




Finally, a Republican campaign that is unafraid to explicitly take on the media.

This is the kind of thing that would have been shot down in the past for jeopardizing the campaign's relationship with the Fourth Estate. Of all campaigns, McCain's should know that nothing good can come of playing footsie with the media. McCain did that for years, and what has it gotten him as far as this campaign goes?

The media is a strategic actor in the campaign, not simply an observer. It was time to treat them as such. 

Wild guess here, but I'll bet McCain's online fundraising wasn't bad today.

OMG!! Obama Lands in Afghanistan

From my Google Reader this morning:

Obama-Only Stories Outnumber McCain-Only Stories by Nearly 4 to 1

Today's Peggy Noonan column has a revealing statistic: in Google News there are currently 138,000 news articles on Barack Obama and 97,000 on John McCain.

But that's just the tip of the iceberg.

The vast majority of campaign stories have to mention both candidates, if only to report on the other candidate's response to another's volley. This statistic alone tells us nothing about who's in the "lede."

So I decided to try an experiment.

I searched for stories that mentioned Obama but didn't mention McCain in Google News. 69,473 stories.

And stories that mention McCain but not Obama? 19,135.

That's a stunning 3.63 to 1 ratio. Read on.

Blogospheric election coverage

[Promoted - In BlogNetNews Elections, David Mastio has built a very interesting, useful tool for tracking online conversations about specific races around the country.  I can see this being valuable not just to the campaign watchers, but also to the people actively involved in campaigns.   Please check it out - and make sure you submit additional races you want them to follow.  The "counsel" that Mastio kindly attributes to me was merely a couple thoughts about the user experience; the credit goes entirely to him and his team.

David Mastio has been a leader on the Right in developing good online products and services.  We need more people doing this. - Jon Henke]

Following local and state elections through the eyes of local bloggers is about to get a lot easier. For the last two years, my partner and I have been been building to be the first bipartisan aggregator of public affairs and news blogs that covers all 50 states.  A typical page  gives readers links to the latest posts, the most popular posts , a local blog search engine and a bunch of other features.

But now that we have all 50 states built and the matchups for the Fall elections are starting to firm up, we've launched something I think is even more powerful.

Click on the map and go to the state you want, then click on the race you want to read about. Two clicks simple.

Instead of relying on the MSM to be the filter of election news, BNN/Elections lets readers and bloggers use the blogosphere as a filter, gathering links and excerpts of all the latest posts in one place and constantly updating them.

All we need now is for the experts on the ground to help us find the most important elections to cover. We've already loaded in the governors races, the U.S. Senate races and many of the most competitive U.S. House races. At the bottom of each state page is a link to a form where you can suggest races for us to cover. We'll try to be updating every day this week within hours of your suggestions.

Thanks to Jon Henke's counsel, we've already started to add features that should make BNN/Elections more useful. Every state now has a permalink so you can skip the map once you know where you want to go and there is an RSS feed from the left and right for each race so you can subscribe to the posts you want to follow.

We're looking for your ideas on how to improve the site too, so send any ideas to me at or if you want to submit your blog to become part of BNN, all you have to do is shoot me your URL with the state you are in and if your blog is focused on state and local issues we'll add it to and if you focus on national issues, we'll add you to .


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