06 May 2010

Pay Attention

You may not be aware, but Great Britain held an election today. Results here. Pay attention.

Here in the States, the out-of-power party is plotting its comeback. Karl Rove is putting together a shadow Republican party apparatus. According to Mike Allen's POLITICO Playbook:
‘Karl has always said: People call us a vast right-wing conspiracy, but we’re really a half-assed right-wing conspiracy,’ he said. ‘Now, he wants to get serious.’ While separate, the five entities are so closely related that three share an 11th-floor office near the White House. The groups are:

--“American Crossroads is a 527 designed to counter spending by labor and progressive groups, including the AFL-CIO, SEIU and MoveOn.org. Its president and CEO is former top U.S. Chamber of Commerce executive Steven Law; its political director is veteran GOP operative Carl Forti. The chairman is Mike Duncan, former RNC chairman; the treasurer is Jo Ann Davidson, former RNC co-chairwoman; and the secretary is Jim Dyke, former RNC communications director. To try to avoid undercutting RNC Chairman Michael Steele, who has alienated some givers, Duncan tells prospective donors that the party structure is “an important part of winning” and that he is looking for people who “want to go above and beyond.”

--“American Action Network, modeled on the Center for American Progress, will conduct polling in key races, and plans to put up TV advertising since it is allowed to engage in explicit political activity as a group organized under Section 501c(4) of the tax code. Former Sen. Norm Coleman of Minnesota is the CEO; Fred Malek, a longtime top GOP financier, is chairman; and Rob Collins, a former top aide to House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, is president. Board members include former U.S. Sens. George Allen and Mel Martinez and former House Reps. Tom Reynolds, Jim Nussle and Vin Weber.

--“American Action Forum, a policy institute linked to the American Action Network, also will mirror CAP. Coleman is also chairman of this group, which as a 501c(3) organization, is prohibited from directly endorsing or opposing candidates. Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former Congressional Budget Office director and campaign adviser to Sen. John McCain, is the president. Board members include former Govs. Jeb Bush of Florida and Tom Ridge of Pennsylvania.

--Resurgent Republic, co-founded a year ago by Gillespie and Republican pollster Whit Ayres, says in its official description that it is “modeled on Democracy Corps, which has made important contributions to the public debate from the left and has proven to be a valuable resource for labor unions, environmentalists and liberal congressional leaders.” The group has released a series of polls and offers itself as a message-testing laboratory to help GOP lawmakers develop policies.
Pay attention.


Watch this one: today the stock market plunged nearly 1000 points purportedly because of a typographical error made by a trader. Sounds like a cover story to me. Sounds like a war game scenario to me. Or sabotage. Don't know; I'm just sayin': Pay attention.

Word of the day: cofferdam. Looks like the first one might be working. Let's hope so. Apparently the on-shore winds have subsided, and the oil slick has made first landfall. I feel so impotent in the face of this catastrophe. Pay attention.


Frances Madeson said...

I appreciate the focus on organizations, it's crucially important, but please don't leave Bloomberg (who personally commands vast personal, corporate and governmental resources inside an international organizational web) out of your analysis. He's as Rovian as they come. Whatever he recommends, I wouldn't say to reflexively do the opposite, but something very much like that. Every statement, every action, no matter how seemingly innocuous or even public-spirited, should be scrutinized like a Penn & Teller magic trick. I don't mean to falsely elevate his stature but for right now anyway, he's the go to guy for Republican chicanery.

Frances Madeson said...

They're shuttering ten branch libraries in NYC. Stop making sense!

Jim H. said...

Schools and magnet programs here are on the chopping block as well as public libraries. Hell, the state threatened to cut off all arts funding, threatening to cut off the supply of NEA and NEH grants to local groups.

The 'strangle the baby' ideology of the Bush era is starting to kick in. You think Bloomberg is complicit? Huh. I'll have to pay closer attention. Thanks.