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May 2007 Archives

May 2, 2007

Links From Today's Show

Here are the links we promised from today's Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show:

Psychology Today : The Ideological Animal,

"In one study, they exposed some participants to the letters WTC or the numbers 9/11 in an image flashed too quickly to register at the conscious level. They exposed other participants to familiar but random combinations of letters and numbers, such as area codes. Then they gave them words like coff__, sk_ll, and gr_ve, and asked them to fill in the blanks. People who'd seen random combinations were more likely to fill in coffee, skill, and grove. But people exposed to subliminal terrorism primes more often filled in coffin, skull, and grave. "The mere mention of September 11 or WTC is the same as reminding Americans of death," explains Solomon."

Fear of death may factor into who we vote for

Fear as the driving political belief

May 3, 2007

SP Alert: Dick Cheney Rips Condoleeza Rice For Talking With Syrians.

Secretary of State Condolezza Rice met with the Syrian Foreign Minister today, incurring the wrath of the administration and conservative pundits. Leading the criticism was Vice President Dick Cheney.

In an interview with ABC News, Vice President Dick Cheney said Assad has "been isolated and cut off because of his bad behavior, and the unfortunate thing about the "Secretary of State's meeting" is it sort of breaks down that barrier."

Conservative pundits and the White House itself further piled on the Secretary of State. The criticism was direct, clear and very personal.
White House spokesperson Dana Perino strongly criticized "Rice's planned meeting" saying, "We think it is a really bad idea. People should take a stop back and think about the message it sends and the message it sends to our allies," Perino said.

The Heritage Foundation is particularly upset at the incident.
"Rice's meeting is likely to undermine the Bush administration's foreign policy and help the Syrians go back to business as usual - much to the dismay of our Lebanese, Iraqi, and Israeli friends, all of whom want the United States to take a tougher stand against Syria," Jim Phillips, a research fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at the Heritage Foundation, told Cybercast News Service .

Yes, we did change all the names in the quotes from Nancy Pelosi to Condolezza Rice to make a simple point.

It is right to talk with the Syrians.

It's hypocritical, repugnant and wrong to point the right wing noise machine at Speaker Pelosi for doing exactly what you're doing.

Bloggers refer to this double standard as "IOKIYAR"

May 15, 2007

We Guarantee Al Gore Will Be Attacked Next Week. We Absolutely Guarantee It.

By Dave Johnson and James Boyce of Smoking Politics

All too often, Democrats are swiftboated, ozoned, attacked and smeared and after the attacks happen, sometimes they respond - sometimes they don't.

We have had enough.

Here's what we know and here's what we're going to do about it.

Continue reading "We Guarantee Al Gore Will Be Attacked Next Week. We Absolutely Guarantee It." »

May 16, 2007

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Live at Noon EST Wednesday

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with James Boyce and Dave Johnson will be was live Wednesday at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online to the archive:

May 17, 2007

Al Gore Stands Up. Time Cover Story On "The Assault On Reason" Is Out.

This morning, thanks to our friends at "Time" we have just seen a glimpse into what we believe is one of the most important political books of the year, Al Gore's, "The Assault On Reason."

This cover story article is fair, balanced and great insight into both Al Gore and the new book.

Of course, this will also start the attacks - but what you see is a man who knows what's right, what to do and how to fight - not to mention what he is fighting far.

It will be interesting to watch the attacks, because they have to make him an object of ridicule.

Why? Well, here's a quote from a tobacco executive:

"Our offensive strategy is to shoot the messenger."

And here's the perfect example from this morning.

John Edwards wants to end the war in Iraq. Mike Huckabee wants to make fun of his haircut. That's pathetic.

Smoking Politics on The Mario Solis Marich Show

James Boyce from SmokingPolitics.com will be on The Mario Solis Marich Show today at 4:30 PM Eastern/1:30 PM Pacific to talk about Al Gore's forthcoming book The Assault on Reason and the imminent distract-and-attack smear campaign from the right.

Mario is noted as "The first Nationally Syndicated Latino Political talk show host in the Country." You can listen to the show on his website here.

May 18, 2007

And Away We Go: As Al Gore's Book Gathers Steam, So Does The Smearing.

On Thursday, Time magazine put up on its website an advance article of its cover story on Al Gore's new book, with excerpts.

Immediately the right started the character assassination. Just like we predicted, there's not a word about the merits of Gore's arguments. Not a word. Why do you think that is?

MacsMind, Al Gore's assault on our intelligence:

But perhaps the greatest fraud is that Al Gore is being presented as some sort of intellectual when in fact even his ex-boss knew him to be an uninformed and downright ignorant boob.

Continue reading "And Away We Go: As Al Gore's Book Gathers Steam, So Does The Smearing." »

ExxonMobil: Practice Made Perfect.

There is no clearer example of how the strategy of using front groups to create doubt and distraction about the facts is used to great effect than the efforts of the oil companies to create doubt about Global Warming.

Publicly, and even in their own advertising, oil companies will tout their 'alternative energy programs' and their dedicated to the environment. Privately, the story is the opposite.

Today, Laurie David has called out ExxonMobil and the $2.1 million they gave to groups who pay to create doubt about global warming. Read her post here.

Important to remember:

the strategy of using front groups is a core part of the strategy - this is ExxonMobil paying someone else to argue on their behalf - but since they are arguing lies, ExxonMobil can't do it directly; hence the front group.

Sound familiar?

DesmogBlog.com put together this great video that perfectly demonstrates how the tobacco industry's PR tactics are still being used today in the 'fight' against global warming advocates.

May 21, 2007

Al Gore And The Internet

As we watch how the right wing attacks Al Gore over the course of the week with the release of his new book, one old lie will keep coming up:

"he's the guy who claimed he invented the Internet!"

But it's not true. Here's a more detailed account of the truth.

Haircuts on Hotline

Does John Edwards' haircut matter? Marc Ambinder at Hotline thinks so.

The fact is, if you're in politics and you talk about poverty, extra attention will be paid to the manner in which you display your personal wealth -- whether, by dint of expensive haircuts and mammoth homes, you spend the money you earn and don't care about "what it looks like."

Ambinder defends this nonsense with a tired cop-out - it's not fair, but whatcha gonna do?

But despite what Ambinder might think, people are not interested in this type of meaningless mudslinging. The comments are dominated by readers saying the same thing - who cares about John Edwards' hair?

This whole coverage by Hotline and AP is insane. They simply don't get it. According to Hotline: As a self made millionaire Edwards is supposed to either shutup and not talk about poverty OR should not live in a large house. What a logic!

Americans are fed up with the smear campaigns. We're not stupid. We want an intelligent conversation about the issues. From another commenter:
Has it every occured to you to report the policy proposals that Edwards has brought forth? The reason this BS hasn't cut into his lead in Iowa, is because Iowans are smart enough to read in between the lines...

Hotline's commenters get it. What's it going to take for their bloggers to catch up?

May 23, 2007

Smoking Politics Radio Show - Wednesday May 23

Please join Dave and I today at Noon Eastern, live on BlogTalkRadio, as we discuss Tony Snow's attack on Al Gore and the irony of the Bush Administration asking something to be "fact checked." We also will continue our coverage of John Edwards's hair cut story - the smear that just won't die. We will be taking calls.

Of course, if you miss the show live, it will be archived here and you can listen at your convenience.

Listen Live

May 25, 2007

The shady underworld of opposition research

We received an e-mail recently that included the following point:

It was the main stream media that was largely responsible for the origination and perpetuation of most of the smears against Gore and ultimately contributed to the closeness of the election in the 2000.

This point deserves some attention.

Continue reading "The shady underworld of opposition research" »

Smoking Politics on Progressive Talk 1150 this Sunday

This Sunday, our very own James Boyce will be talking to Mario Solis-Marich about Smoking Politics and Al Gore's new book, The Assault on Reason.

If you're in Los Angeles, you can tune in to the show on Progressive Talk 1150. James will be on at 12:30pm, Pacific. Not in LA? You can listen to the show live online.

Tune in to the show, and give James a call at 818-260-9193. Help fight back against right-wing attack politics.

Right Fires Up The Smear Machine Against Obama

As we write this, a fresh, still-steaming smear has been dumped on Barack Obama over at The Drudge Report.

A giant headline - almost as big as our computers' monitors - screams, "MCCAIN AIDE: 'OBAMA WOULDN'T KNOW DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN RPG AND A BONG'," linking (as Drudge so often does) to a post at Politico. (Obama's spokesman replied, "America doesn't need juvenile name-calling from Washington, we need a commitment to end this war and bring our brave troops home." Also see the video clip at the end of this post.)

Continue reading "Right Fires Up The Smear Machine Against Obama" »

May 27, 2007

Paul Loeb: The Haircut that Won't Die

Paul Loeb, author of The Impossible Will Take a Little While: A Citizen's Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear, has a great article at the Huffington Post called The Haircut That Won't Die. Loeb's conclusion nails it:

In a culture that wasn't so distracted to death, and where men like Karl Rove weren't weaving a constant fabric of distortions, the issues like the Edwards haircut would be irrelevant. But until American voters unequivocally reject such manufactured distractions, candidates can't prevail against these kinds of attacks by simply ignoring them. They need to respond as clearly, comprehensively, and saliently as possible, while highlighting the bankruptcy of the politics represented by those who would promote them. Only then will they have a chance to address the real issues that we face.

It's up to us, the American public, to put an end to this kind of vapid attack, the smoking politics. The back room consultants that are concocting these distractions aren't going to stop until they hear loud and clear that we're not buying it. It's time we let them know.

May 29, 2007

Drudge Smears Pelosi on Climate Change

In the latest case of the right smearing someone for speaking out about climate change, right-wing blogger Matt Drudge posted a photo of Speaker Nancy Pelosi this morning with the caption: "I saw the climate change."

Continue reading "Drudge Smears Pelosi on Climate Change" »

May 30, 2007

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Today Noon EST!

Noon EST TODAY! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with James Boyce and Dave Johnson will be live Wednesday at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online:
blog radio

May 31, 2007

As Al Gore's Book Hits Number One, ExxonMobil's Front Group Attacks.

Last week Al Gore released a very thought-provoking book The Assault On Reason. Vice President Gore's book has been very well-received and it quickly reached Number 1 on Amazon's best-seller list and now theNew York Times best-seller list.

The Assault On Reason is a remarkable look at where we are as a country, and where we might end up if we don't alter course. It also is remarkable for this day and age because it was written entirely by Mr. Gore, without the aid of a ghostwriter - something that has not been noted much.

"The Assault On Reason" is an important book that examines how decisions are made in American politics in our day and age. It discusses how changes in our world have made us less reliant on reason and logic and this, in turn, has that led to serious policy mistakes like ignoring global warming, and the Iraq war and occupation.

Continue reading "As Al Gore's Book Hits Number One, ExxonMobil's Front Group Attacks." »

Smoking Politics - Why?

There was a time when this country worked to solve its problems.

There was a time in this country when political campaigns were about issues and solutions and ideas.

There was a time when our legislators honestly debated, and minds could be changed, and bipartisan laws could be passed.

There was a time when America was seen as an honest broker for peace, even in the Middle East. And there was even a time when there were solar panels on roof of the White House.

Ronald Reagan - the "Marlboro Man" - took office as President in 1981 - 26 years ago! That means that people under 40 today don't even remember a time when America "worked" and took care of its people and paid its bills. They don't remember a time when the people rather than the corporations and the rich made the decisions. And it especially means that they don't remember a time when campaigns were about anything other than cheap psychological tricks and smears.

Continue reading "Smoking Politics - Why?" »

About May 2007

This page contains all entries posted to Smoking Politics in May 2007. They are listed from oldest to newest.

April 2007 is the previous archive.

June 2007 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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