Cornel West: ‘We’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties’
From Chris Hedges’ column this week at Truthdig:
“We have got to attempt to tell the truth, and that truth is painful,” [Professor Cornel West] says. “It is a truth that is against the thick lies of the mainstream. In telling that truth [...]
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Cornel West: ‘We’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties’
Cornel West: ‘We’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties’Thursday, May 19th, 2011
“We have got to attempt to tell the truth, and that truth is painful,” [Professor Cornel West] says. “It is a truth that is against the thick lies of the mainstream. In telling that truth we become so maladjusted to the prevailing injustice that the Democratic Party, more and more, is not just milquetoast and spineless, as it was before, but thoroughly complicitous with some of the worst things in the American empire. I don’t think in good conscience I could tell anybody to vote for Obama. If it turns out in the end that we have a crypto-fascist movement and the only thing standing between us and fascism is Barack Obama, then we have to put our foot on the brake. But we’ve got to think seriously of third-party candidates, third formations, third parties.”
From the Charleston Daily Mail:
The Mountain Party has tapped former Richwood Mayor Bob Henry Baber to be its nominee in the Oct. 4 special gubernatorial election.
The party unanimously nominated Baber, 60, following a convention Sunday in Sutton. Former Mountain Party gubernatorial candidate Jesse Johnson was also a potential nominee in the convention, but he withdrew his name from consideration to allow for a unanimous vote for Baber.
Baber was the first Mountain Party member ever elected to public office when he won the 2004 Richwood mayoral election. He had lost out to Johnson for the party’s gubernatorial nomination earlier that year.
The likely Democratic nominee is acting Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, who is considered a conservative in the mold of Senator Joe Manchin. This could create a space for the Mountain Party to exploit by running to the left of both candidates, although the vote ceiling is quite low for a statewide third party green candidate in culturally conservative West Virginia.
Paul Krugman talks about the voodoo economics of the new GOP. This concludes a series on the Witch Doctors who are funding it. And a surprise ending!
We end this series as we began it: with the juvenile antics of Tucker Carlson, who leapt at his guest hatespeakership of the Sean Hannity show on Faux Nooz™, who have evidently minted the magick elixir that gives the old saw, “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time,” much needful palliation and near-refutation with highly lucrative propagandistic propagation.
Fox Utterly Destroys Cable News Ratings Competition in 2010 — The Nielsen numbers are in for 2010, and in the battle for cable news ratings supremacy, Fox News took the title for the ninth year in a row — bludgeoning the competition for another year…
You might recall that this investigation into the money behind Tucker Carlson’s and former Cheney employee Neil Patel’s “The Daily Caller” began with Tucker’s loud braying that he had purchased the domain “KeithOlbermann Dot Com.” Which probably was hilarious at whatever private academy he attended middle school in, but was unworthy of any serious view of the world.
not inhumane; just inhuman
And this time, the idiotic proposition that animal cruelty — no matter how horrendous — is of such monstrous proportion that the Death Penalty must be invoked flies in the face of all human law from Hammurabi to the present day. Fascinating from a conservative. But this isn’t about Tucker, who plays the fool at the end of Rupert Murdoch’s and Foster Friess’ leash. And Murdoch I’ve covered elsewhere.
This is the short form of the story so far:
Carlson and the Daily Caller buy “Keith Olbermann dot com” and engage in a variety of dickish acts.
More Fake Cowboys (23 July)
We meet Foster Friess, a kid from Wisconsin who made his money buying and selling stocks out of Delaware, who moved to the 7th Wealthiest County in the United States of America in 1992 (Teton County, Wyoming). His connections with the late John Walton (Wal-Mart), Rich and Betsy DeVos (of Amway fame), the CNP, the Kochs and various other electoral cabals, all the while trumpeting his “philanthropy” (in contradistinction to his seeming misanthropy). Turns out he never read the lesson of the Widow’s Mite (Mark 12:41-44, Luke 21:1-4) in his New Testament.
We learn of the “anointed for life” board of the National Christian Charitable Foundation, Inc., which dispensed 1,155,901 in 2008. We learn that Foster Friess’ hundreds of millions in his “family foundation” are now administered by the NCF. The heretical nature of the NCF’s “Christianity” vis a vis the Nicene Creed, which has been the benchmark since 325 AD.
Following Foster’s Buddies’ Money (10 Aug.)
I correct the prior report, to show that the NCF is bigger than the American Heart Association, the Boy Scouts of America, Yale’s endowment fund, PBS, CARE, the Girl Scouts of America and many others. How the NCF donates to libertarian “charities” like Koch’s “Americans for Prosperity” — a founder and funder of the tea parties, etc. How the NCF’s finances are kind of flabbergasting to an expert on foundation abuse. And how 3,398 in brokers’ fees was paid to Friess Associates, now run by Friess’ son, in Jackson Hole, according to the NCF’s 2008 tax returns.
Foster’s Dominionist Pals (13 Aug.)
How Foster Friess, the NCF and the American Family Association are linked in right wing apocalyptic circles, monetarily. And the AFA’s poitical agenda that’s being supported.
Rubber Baby Buggy Bunglers (18 Aug.)
Darby and the Scofield Reference Bible, and how the modern belief in “The Rapture” and the Apocalypse, in the Tribulation, Armageddon, etc. infiltrated into mainstream American Christianity, and just how far the NCF, Friess, AFA, etc. are from traditional Christian practice, as a means of understanding their worldview from INSIDE.
More exceptionally dickish behavior from Tucker. Foster Friess holds a birthday party for the widow of a friend in Phoenix, but gives himself the top billing for the “Foster Friess Stars and Stripes Classic.”
[Note: READ Michael Reynolds’ “Inside The #1 Religious Right Money Machine” if you haven’t already.]
I have delayed this last part because I had not wanted to dip my feet simultaneously in long excursions into Dominionist Christianity and Kochian Shenanigans. Happily, as it turned out, the final chapter wrote itself.
‘official’ Foster Friess from his website
Firstly, Foster Friess turns up as a major contributor in races as diverse as Illinois and the New Mexico Governor’s race, and on and on.
According to the FEC, here’s what the last round of off-year elections cost (NATIONAL offices, only.)
—————-Receipts —————— Disbursements
All———– ,090,857,901 ———,064,434,893
Republican– 0,797,506 ———–0,467,057
Democrat —-6,854,959 ————0,978,865
Other ————,205,436 —————-,988,971
—————-Receipts —————— Disbursements
All ———–8,883,443 ————–3,556,783
Republican- 1,666,158 ————–3,108,076
Democrat— 2,247,581 ————-5,745,025
Other ———-,969,704 —————-,703,682
And here’s a wee smidgen of what Foster Friess spent over the same period (from the FEC, with links to transactions and committees):
[BEN] QUAYLE FOR CONGRESS [Ariz.]
03/31/2010 2400.00 10990529459 03/31/2010 2400.00 10990529459
FRIENDS OF SHARRON ANGLE [Nev.]
11/01/2010 2400.00 10021140005
[SEAN] DUFFY FOR CONGRESS
10/11/2010 1500.00 10991767487
01/13/2010 2400.00 10020331326
10/15/2010 900.00 10932007470
[THOMAS EDMUNDS] PRICE FOR CONGRESS
03/03/2010 1000.00 10930610978
02/12/2010 3500.00 10930452341
08/26/2010 2500.00 10931440126
06/02/2010 5000.00 10990859695
And, from 2009,
08/28/2009 1000.00 10020080399
12/28/2009 1000.00 10020071231
Not earth-shattering, by the standards of this most expensive or lucrative of elections (depending on your interests). But you’ll notice the pattern. Some candidates are funded before the campaign begins in earnest (2009), while others get last minute donations, and still others get pre- and post-primary cash. Clearly there’s a sort of horse race bettor’s mentality going on here. Which stands to reason: Foster Friess Associates, like Robert Mercer’s Renaissance Technologies, is based on picking “growth” stocks and producing high yields, which both companies loudly bray at the slightest provication.
But you’ve only scratched the tip of the iceberg. If you go to the FEC individual contributors’ page, you’ll notice that just plugging in “FRIESS” with no first name yields five pages of printouts for “FRIESS” in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. There’s “Lynn Friess” and “Lynette Friess” and “Lynette E Friess,” and “Friess, L.” and even “Friess, Foster Mrs.” All a homemaker in Jackson, Wyo.* And always made at the same time that Foster makes HIS contributions to whatever committee requires the cash.
Lynette E. and Foster S. Friess
(* Except back in the ’90s, before they moved to Millionaire Acres outside of Jackson Hole, Wyoming to pretend to be cowboys circa 2000, when Foster from Wisconsin made his home in Delaware while running “Brandywine” funds as one of the most successful go-go funds of the ’90s — when Lynn Friess is listed as a homemaker in GREENVILLE, DE 19807.)
Things like this 12-31-2009 contribution from Lynn Friess a/k/a all the aforementioned:
[PAT] TOOMEY FOR SENATE COMMITTEE [PENNSYLVANIA]
12/31/2009 1000.00 10020060621
01/13/2010 2400.00 10020331327
10/14/2010 2400.00 10021030391
Our new Ruling Class of Stock Bettors: tossing out thousand dollar contributions like bon bons, even in states they DON’T own vacation homes or real estate in.
With apologies to Rembrandt
And Steven Friess and Frank Friess also of Jackson, Wyo. and Friess Polly, Polly J. Mrs. and Ms. of Jackson, Wyoming, who is sometimes various things:
CONNEMARA FUND/MANAGING TRUSTEE
It is all rather confusing. But then, that’s the point, right? The poker chips probably come from the same source, but even when lawfully reported, there is a bewildering series of variations, all generally the maximum that the law allows. After all, Foster Friess retired off to Wyoming to play Gene Autry with a tidy quarter billion dollars or so from managing stock bets for a decade, and the legal limits of campaign contributions are just chump change for the various Friesses of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, after all.
If it merely stopped there, it would be one thing. Nothing out of the usual. Just a GOP high roller pushing a bunch of chips onto the table, looking out for his bet … er, best interests. Except there is one all-important question which is neither asked, nor addressed, which I will reveal at the end.
But then we add in all those little state contributions in states like New Mexico. From the New Mexico Independent, September 14, 2010:
… Foster Friess is he biggest individual donor to [successful GOP gubernatorial candidate Susana] Martinez during the last period. He gave 0,000.
He has also given generously to, among others, Senator John McCain, R-Arizona, Senator John Thune, R-S.D, and the Republican Party of New Mexico.
He also has promoted the controversial documentary Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West. DVDs of the movie, criticized as inflammatory, were mailed out to swing state voters and inserted in newspapers in advance of the 2008 election. Although the film was made in 2006, liberal groups cried foul, saying the producers were trying to influence the election in favor of John McCain.
Friess is also an advocate for school choice. Denish and Martinez have tangled over vouchers, which Martinez now says she does not support.
The liberal magazine Mother Jones did a short profile on Friess in 1997, listing him as 14th on the list of top political donors in the country on a federal level. [...]
And in Arizona, as I reported in December 14′s ”Because “Cudgel For Growth” Wouldn’t Sound as Warm and Fuzzy.”
In Illinois, he was only the NINTH biggest contributor 0,000 to GOP gubernatorial candidate Bill Brady — who contributed 2,000 himself to himself.
And so on and so forth, until we come to the story that I reported and didn’t even know it.
Three years ago, the hoi polloi of the Council for National Policy met in Salt Lake City, Utah. Here’s the lede to the Salt Lake City Tribune’s story on September 29, 2007 [emphasis added] as archived by the Sutherland Institute:
Salt Lake Tribune
By Robert Gehrke
Vice President Dick Cheney and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney addressed some of the most influential leaders of the conservative movement Friday in Salt Lake City, but their speeches, like the group itself, remain cloaked in secrecy.
The Council for National Policy is a shadowy group comprising leaders in the family values, national defense and ”decency” movements, dubbed “Sith Lords of the Ultra-Right” by the liberal blog DailyKos.
Members are told not to discuss the group, reveal the topics discussed in the closed-door meetings, or even say whether or not they are members of the organization.
“You’re not supposed to be here,” said a grinning Foster Friess, who was pleasant but steadfast in his unwillingness to talk about the group….
Yeah. THAT Foster Friess. As I reported earlier, he’s been on the governing board at least since 1996. He was co-chairman in 1994.
We’ve seen the Council for National Policy before, in “Dominionist Hoedown in Salt Lake City and YOU ain’t Invited,” (29 Sept, 2007), and “Dominionist Hoedown Links (update)” (30 September 2007):
OK. So who’s this “dominionist” gaggle that’s having a hoedown, and where’s the hoedown?
Well, this is the bunch, according to Raw Story:
Founded in 1981 by Tim LaHaye, the co-author of the popular post-apocalyptic Christian-themed Left Behind books, the group holds confidential meetings three times a year attended by a small but powerful cadre of top conservatives.
“The media should not know when or where we meet or who takes part in our programs, before or after a meeting,” one of the group’s rules reads, according to a New York Times profile of the organization in 2004.
“The membership list is ‘strictly confidential,” said the Times. “Guests may attend ‘only with the unanimous approval of the executive committee’.”
But WHO the heck are we talking about?
Well, at least Mr. Friess was following the rules of our modern “Anti-Hellfire” club.
Out of Focus James Dobson of Focus on the Family, l.
But the gray eminences of the Council on National Policy (CNP) were IN Salt Lake City for reasons that become clear in retrospect. Salon reported:
Christian conservative leaders privately consider supporting a third- party, anti-abortion candidate should Rudy Giuliani win the GOP nomination.
By Michael Scherer
Sept. 30, 2007 | WASHINGTON — A powerful group of conservative Christian leaders decided Saturday at a private meeting in Salt Lake City to consider supporting a third-party candidate for president if a pro-choice nominee like Rudy Giuliani wins the Republican nomination.
The meeting of about 50 leaders, including Focus on the Family’s James Dobson, the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins and former presidential candidate Gary Bauer, who called in by phone, took place at the Grand America Hotel during a gathering of the Council for National Policy, a powerful shadow group of mostly religious conservatives. James Clymer, the chairman of the U.S. Constitution Party, was also present …
The private meeting was not a part of the official CNP schedule, which is itself a closely held secret. “Dobson came in just for this meeting,” the person said. The decision confirms the fears of many Republican Party officials, who have worried that a Giuliani nomination would irrevocably split the GOP…. Earlier in the day, Vice President Dick Cheney had traveled to Utah to deliver a brief address to the larger CNP gathering. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney also addressed the larger group.
The decision has also been reported in an unsigned article by WorldNetDaily, a conservative online news service. “Not only was there a consensus among activists to withhold support for the Republican nominee, there was even discussion about supporting the entry of a new candidate to challenge the frontrunners,” the article said. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, WorldNetDaily’s editor, Joseph Farah, attended the larger CNP gathering.
Regular readers will be familiar with Mr. Farah, who publishes WorldNetDaily out of Grant’s Pass, Oregon, in a seemingly apocalyptic-survivalist compound closely aligned with “guru” Roy Masters, and his son, Chris, whose radio syndication empire has included Art Bell’s Coast to Coast (now with George Noori) and Michael Savage. Savage’s first book was published via WorldNetDaily’s publishing arm, and Farah himself is almost certainly the ghost-writer (officially acknowledged as “collaborator,” appropriately enough) of Rush Limbaugh’s second book See I Told You So.
Farah (far R.) and Limbaugh at the
See I Told You So book release party
I only bring this up to relay what “unsigned” from WorldNetDaily wrote about that ultra-secret conference that publisher and head writer Joe Farah attended:
Farah moderating the “Values Voters” GOPrez debate in 2008
Christian leaders threaten to abandon Republicans
Dobson, others meet in Salt Lake City to plan options in presidential campaign
Posted: September 30, 2007
1:00 am Eastern
© 2010 WorldNetDaily.com
James Dobson WASHINGTON – Some of the top leaders in Christian pro-family activism – including James Dobson of Focus on the Family – met in Salt Lake City yesterday to plot a strategy should Rudy Giuliani or another supporter of legalized abortion be nominated by the Republican Party as its presidential candidate.
Not only was there a consensus among activists to withhold support for the Republican nominee, there was even discussion about supporting the entry of a new candidate to challenge the frontrunners.
Perhaps the most surprising development in the meeting was the floating of an idea to recruit yet another candidate to enter the fray.
Among the more intriguing names mentioned was billionaire Foster Friess, a major Republican contributor and philanthropist who lives in Jackson, Wyoming.
Straight from the horse’s mouth. Now, let’s look at that meeting, and then I’ll finish the story with a bit of Wasilliness that you probably never expected.
29 SEPTEMBER 2007 · 6:22 PM
[NOTE: Because it just might make you read it, longtime newsman Doug Krile lists this in today's Krile Files as "The Best Story of the Night: Oh, my. There's enough intrigue here to keep anybody interesting. Follow the twists and turns and be prepared to be surprised!" -- hw]
What’s a “dominionist”?
It’s important that you ask that question first, or else you’ll have no way of analyzing what’s going on. According to Wikipedia:
Dominionism is described by some contemporary scholars and journalists as a tendency among conservative politically-active Christians to seek influence or control over secular civil government through political action — aiming (more…)