Texas Judge Slaps Down James O’Keefe Voter Reg Claims

Screen-Shot-2013-03-18-at-4.03.11-AMNew Orleans    It’s only a matter of time before someone sues James O’Keefe, the video scammer, for false advertising to prevent him from calling his operation Project Veritas, since veritas means truth in Latin, and he has no clue what that is.

O’Keefe’s latest tempest in a teapot had been his accusations against the Battleground Texas voter registration project.  He and his associates had memorably called the group something on the order of the “new ACORN” so that obviously attracted my interest and enthusiastic support for them right “from hello.”  Once you stripped down all of the hyperbole, allegations, accusations, and his general cry that the “sky was falling” on democracy in Texas, the kernel of his argument was that somehow the Battlegrounders were keeping the phone numbers of folks they registered in order to call and remind them to vote when the next election came nigh.   Oh, and the O’Keefers also said this was all done at the behest of Wendy Davis, one of the Democratic candidates for Governor, once Rick Perry is done.

The O’Keefers filed their complaints amidst hubbub from the Republican Tea-people and the general red meat crowd so a Texas judge appointed a couple of special prosecutors to look into the mess, including one who was a Republican, since fair is fair still, even for some folks in Texas.   Needless to say, there was “no there, there.”  In his dismissal of all charges the judge administered a slap down in his conclusion:

The Veritas video was little more than a canard and political disinformation. The video was particularly unprofessional when it suggested that the actions of Battleground Texas were advocated by a Texas gubernatorial candidate and that the actions of a single volunteer deputy registrar may even involve private health data, which is not involved in the voter registration process.

Oh, yeah, did I forget to say that while they were taking shots at ACORN, in equally scattershot fashion they had alleged that somehow their complaints were also connected to hanky-panky by the Battlegrounders with Obamacare.  Invoking Obama’s name on the O’Keefe besotted wacko-right is a clue that the fur is about to fly, so you can’t fire off an angry screed without connecting the dots back to Obama, ACORN, etc, etc, etc,

As for the actual allegation, well to quote MSNBC.com’s report

… the special prosecutors wrote that the prohibition on recording phone numbers only applies to the official county registrar, not volunteer registrars like Battleground Texas activists.

Readers will recall that O’Keefe is in Texas largely at the behest of Brietbart.com which is hoping there and in the United Kingdom that their brand of hate-agation can stir up confusion for upcoming elections in both places.

MSNBC reminded readers that it’s all about voter suppression of course and that there’s plenty at stake:

Texas has one of the lowest turnout rates in the country. And because Hispanics in the state are registered to vote at a significantly lower rate than other ethnic groups, boosting their participation rate is crucial to Democratic hopes.  For the GOP, hampering that effort is a key strategy for holding onto power. Already, Texas Republicans have made registration more difficult: A 2011 law required that anyone registering voters complete an extensive training program, and imposed other restrictions. And the state’s strict voter ID law, currently being challenged by the Justice Department, has been shown to disproportionately affect hurt non-whites.

I couldn’t have said it better myself, but trust me on this, O’Keefe’s total lack of a moral compass and disregard for anything resembling the truth, makes him immune from embarrassment since his only interest is in drawing blood at the first, deepest cut, not whether or not he suffers some scrapes himself.   Nonetheless as his base continues to narrow, we can count the months until his minders, less immune to the damage, finally cut him off at the funding stream, which is the only thing he’ll ever notice.


Provocateurs Filled with Obama and ACORN Hating

hgh-testosterone-dallas-austin-texasBristol    Ted Nugent traded in his guitar for a gun a long time ago, and now he’s stomping around Texas, rather than Michigan, but the verses he’s yelling now are totally without rhyme or reason.  Of course the Republicans, including the current Attorney General, running for Governor of Texas, claim to not know anything much about Nugent, but they know enough to know that he’s the opening act to throw red meat at the foaming mouths of their hard right rallies for their campaign faithful.  He’s one of the performing puppets saying what they can’t, so that no one misses the message, and it’s a heinous message of hate.

            Nugent in one of the weirdest non-apologies on the recent record said he was sorry to his Republican betters but “not necessarily to the President” for saying:

I have obviously failed to galvanize and prod, if not shame, enough Americans to be ever vigilant not to let a Chicago communist-raised, communist-educated, communist-nurtured subhuman mongrel like the Acorn community organizer gangster Barack Hussein Obama to weasel his way into the top office of authority in the United States.

            CNN and the New York Times have pointed out that the whole “subhuman mongrel” phrase has a direct historical relationship with the same constant refrain used by the Nazis against the Jews, and in many ways that says it all, but the continued red-baiting and ACORN-hating that has become part of the regular rhetoric of the right should also be roundly condemned as inappropriate political speech.

            And, it’s becoming way too common, especially in Texas.

            A weird question on my Facebook page sent me looking for its source and it wasn’t hard then to put two and two together on the hater brigade in Texas, where you can now quicklyconnect the recent announcement of Breitbart.com and their expansion of their rightwing sensation mongering to Texas to insert themselves into the Governor’s race with the repeated resurfacing of James O’Keefe and his antics along with sidekicks like, Brandon Darby, notorious for his alleged spying infiltration of various groups several years ago.  One is likely financier, while the others play the provocateurs.  

            I watched a video late the other night with O’Keefe and Darby trying to attack something called Battleground Texas, which I gather is doing voter registration in the state, which God knows is much needed.  In a slight of hand they were referencing a story by Austin-American political reporter, Jonathan Tilove, where he had quoted my advice in the recent issue of Social Policy to all organizers and organizations doing this work to be ever vigilant of their “gotcha” tactics, and then, in order to join Nugent on the “red meat” trail, calling Battleground Texas in their video, the “new” ACORN.  Of course I wouldn’t know these Battleground Texas folks any more than the man from Mars, but accuracy was never the issue or interest of O’Keefe and his imitators.  Their mission and method is to muddle by manipulating into their message the litany of code words that communicate hate and division. 

The formula of communist plus ACORN plus Obama is hard for any front row, drooling, fire breathing rightwing dragon to miss, especially when it is pounded home so regularly.   Ted Nugent didn’t invent it and neither did O’Keefe and his buddies, but as Nugent says, it’s only his “heroes” that can stop it, and that’s people like Abbot, Ted Cruz, the Texas Senator, Governor Rick Perry, and the legions of other Republican leaders who have unleashed this hate throughout the land and refuse to curb it.   Saner voices need to be heard on the right, because this kind of sensationalism increasingly seems less like an encouragement to vote, than a coded call to violence.  It has to stop.