Endorsements and Scorecards

"Homosexuality is wrong" - Joe Lieberman to the New Haven Advocate

"Senator Lieberman is a trusted ally in Congress." Human Rights Campaign

"I think if two people want to get married let them get married." Ned Lamont

I don't think it's particularly controversial to point out that HRC's leadership has become corrupted and inept, betraying the people who make up its membership.  Or used to make up its membership, anyway.

Corruption takes different forms in different institutions.  Modern corruption comes from the desperate need of institutions and stars to garner mass media attention and direct mail donations.  On the right, it turns people into raving Darwin-deniers and Duke Cunninghams.  On the left, it allows institutions like the Human Rights Campaign, LCV, and the Sierra Club to become wedded to their largely irrelevant scorecards.

This is infrastructure that needs to be rescued and turned around to support a progressive agenda.  Moving beyond the access game and towards the movement power game is key.

Tags: Fact Checking, Joe Lieberman, LA Weekly, Ned Lamont, New Haven Advocate (all tags)



Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Scorecards make sense, whether they're put out by HRC or the truckers' union, or by a manufacturers' group. It's a simple, mathematical, "objective" way to show how legislators have voted on issues near and dear to your group.

But basing endorsements on scorecards alone is just wrong. First, they omit challengers and favor incumbents. Second, they omit lots of subtleties.

Groups should publish scorecards -- no doubt about that. But voters -- gay, women, truckers, whoever -- need to weigh a hell of a lot more than scorecards alone. And they need to factor in how a challenger might have voted on the same bills.

The problem, of course, is that too many voters are willing to take the time to look and read and think before voting.

by S1 2006-06-01 08:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Groups should weigh more than a scorecard, yep.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 08:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

And weigh votes on scorecards. I understand the concept between treating all votes equally (lobbyist want to be able to count on legislators every time, not just on the big issues). But some votes are bigger than others -- this should be taken into account. Also, there is a lot that goes on beyond voting that matters greatly. A good attorney shouldn't just be judged on win/loss in court, because a good attorney wins before things go to trial. Same with legislators. Furhtermore, what about public statements, influence on brand, and messaging?

Scorecards as they are done now try to simplify the complex, but end up minimizing that which can be most important.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 09:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Scorecards are the reality of life.  Often time groups like this let incumbents know in advance which votes they are scoring also.  They even go so far as to tell an office holder that how they vote on one bill in a two-year period could make the difference on an endorsement or not.  It could very well be that Sen Lieberman was warned in advance to vote no or yes on one vote by HRC and if he did no matter what else he did he had there backing.  This is the way things are done and it is why incumbents win.  

by THE MODERATE 2006-06-01 09:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

This is the way things have been done, but they are not a fact of life. HRC isn't the first group to look bad this year because of scorecards (ask NARAL and the Sierra Club). There is movement on the issue, smart groups will realize this and change strategies while other groups will ask for more egg added to their faces by refusing to progress.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 09:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Can you provide us with a link, or date of article, for the quotation you cited from the New Haven Advocate of Joe Lieberman stating that "Homosexuality is wrong"?  

by dmfst42 2006-06-01 08:54AM | 0 recs
by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 08:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Nope. Sorry, that's not good enough. I want the original cite from the New Haven, which is my home town paper and a source I trust. All you've linked to here is a reference in an opinion piece at some alternative weekly in L.A., the basis of which, for all I know, is a third hand rumour about something that appeared in the Register. I'm willing to bet that quote either never appeared or is taken WAY out of context.

by ColoDem 2006-06-01 10:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Grow up.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 10:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Come on Matt, Lieberman obviously sucks but are you seriously saying it is somehow juvenile to expect someone posting an inflammatory quote like this to have read the ENTIRE STATEMENT before posting?  Now, if you have in fact done that, then fair enough - but please post the link so we can all take a look.  

Look, if Lieberman seriously said this then my view on him will go from "yeah, we should get rid of this guy" to "let me do everything in my power to get rid of this abomination."  But I want to be sure this isn't a hugely distorted quote before I make that jump.  

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 10:37AM | 0 recs

If the quote is kosher then, let's get the date and page of the edition of the Advocate in which the quote appeared.

If it's a swiftboating, I'd have thought even Lieberman-haters would be somewhat concerned. Because not every swiftee turns the other cheek like the K-Man.

It's a simple and reasonable request.

Abusive and unresponsive replies I'd be tempted to take as non-denial denials.

(See my comment below for more.)

by skeptic06 2006-06-01 10:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Amen!

swiftboating does not equal smearing

Cleland was swiftboated, Kerry was swiftbotated, Hacket was swiftboated, but Lieberman can't be swiftboated because he didn't serve.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 11:02AM | 0 recs
Sorry to be "uh, duh" about this but...
though it would be nice to have a link to the original comment in the New Haven newspaper, he obviously said it.
The source provided is three years old.  There have been dozens of mentions of that specific quote in all types of media.
If the quote weren't accurate, Lieberman wouldn't let it stand.
by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 11:06AM | 0 recs
I just think this is sloppy

I'm not quite sure I follow your logic.  How can we know whether this is something lieberman "wouldn't let it stand" till we see the actual full quote?  People twist and distort statements all the time - both on the right and the left.  Now, I'm not saying the guy DIDN'T say this and if he did then it is reprehensible.  But I think it is extremely unprofessional to cite a quote this inflammatory third hand without EVER looking at what the original statement was.  Being a blogger isn't the same as being a journalist, but I do think that there is some obligation to do a minimum amount of investigation before attributing statements to someone.  That's just basic fairness and should apply even to shady characters like Lieberman.

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 11:27AM | 0 recs
Re: I just think this is sloppy

I trust someone will be able to find the source material before long.
Again...this has been floating around since 2003.  If it was inaccurate, surely Lieberman would have said something about it.

If the quote does prove to be true, I think its resurrection will be quite damaging.

Googling for this brought up all sorts of stuff I didn't even know about Lieberman.  He's advocated prayer in school.  He apparently opposes affirmative action.
The dude's a Connecticut Strom Thurmond.

by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 11:41AM | 0 recs
Re: I just think this is sloppy

Emailed the Advocate ...

by BingoL 2006-06-01 11:57AM | 0 recs
And that addresses the issue how?

I'd almost be tempted to take that as a non-denial denial...

by skeptic06 2006-06-01 10:59AM | 0 recs
Re: And that addresses the issue how?

Go for it.  It was sourced in a reputable paper.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 11:06AM | 0 recs
Re: And that addresses the issue how?

since a reputable paper cited it, I think the burden is on those calling BS to prove it, not the other way around

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 11:08AM | 0 recs
Re: And that addresses the issue how?

That's an interesting perspective.  So now folks should have an obligation to prove that what's said about them on blogs is NOT true rather than the blog having an obligation to act in a professional manner and fact-check things.  Hmm, that sounds like a GREAT idea.  

You know, we complain about the conventional media all the time yet now I'm somehow supposed to simply accept this snippet of a quote b/c a "reputable newspaper" purportedly published it?  That seems a little silly to me.

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 11:21AM | 0 recs
Re: And that addresses the issue how?

This was well sourced, if somebody wants to call BS on a well sourced article they need to back it up.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 11:35AM | 0 recs
You cannot be serious, man!

Only today, Chris was trumpeting the egregious errors of the AP's John Solomon on the question of Harry Reid's attendance at that infamous boxing match. Stuff that has run in all the reputable papers, I strongly suspect.

Not to mention Judith Miller - remember her?

But we're not even there yet.

Our ultimate source for this quote is LA Weekly in a piece entitled Holy Joe, Corporate Joe, G.I. Joe: Will the real Senator Lieberman please stand up?

The piece says in graf #2:

Most of the mainstream press corps keeps presenting a sanitized version of Lieberman's bio, but some of the things he'd rather forget are well worth remembering now that he's a national candidate.

with a kicker
All in all, as a Democrat, Lieberman makes a great Republican.

It's a hit piece.

And all we get by way of information on the quote is this:

For example, Lieberman has a long record of political homophobia. Lieberman, who told the New Haven Advocate that "homosexuality is wrong," joined with notorious homo-hater Jesse Helms in voting to take away federal funding from schools that counsel suicidal gay teens that it's okay to be gay.

And there I've quoted the whole sentence.

Which is rather more than the LA Weekly piece does for the alleged Lieberman quote.

Why, when we're rightly so reluctant to credit juicy allegations in the nation's top papers are some prepared to give an alt-weekly a free pass?

Why won't someone just look the original quote up in Nexis?

by skeptic06 2006-06-01 11:28AM | 0 recs
Re: You cannot be serious, man!

Why won't someone just look the original quote up in Nexis?

That is what you were supposed to do before you called BS.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 11:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

I looked around the New Haven Advocate and came up with this article entitled "GI Joe" http://newhavenadvocate.com/gbase/News/c ontent.html?oid=oid:138863 and though his stance on the CT civil unions bill is managled to say the least, he at no point even approaches saying anything like "homosexuality is wrong."

A search on the New Haven Advocate website for the logical keywords (lieberman, gay, homosexual, homosexuality, wrong) bring up nothing. Unless someone can dig up a link to a article on the New Haven Advocate where that is actually said (or perhaps it only made it into print?) I believe an update to this thread should be made on the front page.

I'm not at all a fan of lieberman, that's been made clear in a number of other threads. I am a big fan of Lamont's. But attributing a statement like that to someone when there's no evidence of it in the proof cited is not acceptable.

by Quinton 2006-06-01 11:28AM | 0 recs
A very interesting piece

This was I suspect an important piece for the Advocate - that the publisher turned up would suggest so, at least!

And, from the tone of the piece, the rag is not one of Lieberman's greatest fans.

They put the homosexuality is immoral question and duly get a bullshit answer.

But they do not repost challenging its inconsistency with the earlier supposed quote that homosexuality is wrong.

Didn't they check the morgue? Or have a couple of interns do so?

Didn't anyone on the Advocate staff recall that striking quote and, in the light of the - to put it mildly - topicality of Lieberman's views on the subject, mention its existence to those who were going to sit with Lieberman?


by skeptic06 2006-06-01 11:50AM | 0 recs
I seriously can't believe that Matt just posted this w/out even making an effort to look at the advocate article.  Again, Lieberman is a terrible Senator for a variety of reasons that are completely factually accurate and verifiable.  Nobody needs to distort the truth (or - to be more charitable - fail to check what the truth is
) to make him look bad.  
by HSTruman 2006-06-01 12:02PM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed.

This came from a well-sourced article in a respectable publication, and it was published on a well-respected blog that doesn't get this stuff wrong.  Lieberman has had three years to deny this and he hasn't.

If you want to prove me wrong you can, but that is not what you are trying to do.  This is another bad faith attempt to discredit a perfectly legitimate point.

So I put the challenge to you.  Get Lieberman to deny this.  If you can do that I will ask for a clarification for what the LA Weekly, which does good work, wrote.  

http://www.laweekly.com/news/news/holy-j oe-corporate-joe-gi-joe/2614/

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 04:06PM | 0 recs
Here's the thing...

What we're talking about is a simple point of information: verifying the alleged Lieberman quote.

The way I'd expect the quote to be most easily verified is a Nexis search.

But - not all of us here have Nexis access. I don't for one.

However, I believe that some contributing here - more likely professionals in the politics game - do have Nexis access. Or at least that those some know people who do have Nexis access, and who would be more than happy to take a few seconds out of their day to run the search.

So I'm slightly surprised that we haven't had an answer yet.

I would expect you to fall into one or other of these categories. (No doubt you will tell us whether you do.)

But let's take your points:

This came from a well-sourced article in a respectable publication...

To call it a well-sourced article rather begs the question, surely? How do we know it's well-sourced? If someone ran the Nexis search and tracked down the Lieberman quote, that would be some evidence of it being well-sourced.

As it is, we have squat.

I'll stipulate to LA Weekly being a respectable publication - but that gets us nowhere.

The New York Times was widely thought a respectable publication when it published Judith Miller's Chalabi crap, not to mention Jayson Blair's stuff, the Whitewater stuff, lies about the Tonkin Gulf Incidents and a thousand more. 60 Minutes was respected when it produced the Killian memos as genuine.

You're surely not expecting us to take on trust what an alt-weekly says was published in another alt-weekly on some unspecified date in some unspecified context?

it was published on a well-respected blog that doesn't get this stuff wrong.


What actual reporting did our friends at FDL do of the alleged Lieberman quote?

Or were they placing their trust in the LA Weekly as we're beseeched to do here?

And when you say this stuff, what do you mean, exactly? Are you saying the blog has never got anything wrong? Or is it only in relation to important matters prejudicial to their political opponents that they possess infallibility?

As for

Lieberman has had three years to deny this and he hasn't.

if so unpopular a guy as he is were to go on record denying every allegation made against him in rags as low down in the journalistic food chain as the LA Weekly, he would have his work cut out for him.

And - as I'm sure you don't need me to point out - merely by denying an allegation, a pol gives it legs.

Remember, what we're talking about is not a matter of opinion.

It's a matter of fact - and the tools whereby this fact can most easily be found are - I believe - in the hands of those claiming its existence.

So when folks offer character evidence (and pretty spurious character evidence it is, too) to prove a fact on which direct evidence is available - and, I believe, available to them with relative ease - it's not surprising that their claims are treating with some skepticism.

If you want to prove me wrong you can

As I point out, the information is much more likely and more easily to be found by means available to you, which are not available to me.

but that is not what you are trying to do.  This is another bad faith attempt to discredit a perfectly legitimate point.

I leave to others to judge where (if anywhere) bad faith lies in this difference of opinion.

So I put the challenge to you.  Get Lieberman to deny this.

If Lieberman, chose (perhaps for the reasons I suggest) to ignore a piece in the LA Weekly for three years, how long do you think he will ignore humble little me?

The question we started with still remains unanswered: did Lieberman say what LA Weekly alleged he said, and in what context did he say it?

So much obscurity when a Nexis search will settle that question in one.

by skeptic06 2006-06-01 05:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Boy, you sure told him. Don't forget to insult his mamma next time too.

Geez. Got a problem with people pointing out that you may have made a mistake or used questionable judement Matt?

by michael in chicago 2006-06-01 02:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

This came from a well-sourced article in a respectable publication, and it was published on a well-respected blog that doesn't get this stuff wrong.  Lieberman has had three years to deny this and he hasn't.

If you want to prove me wrong you can, but that is not what you are trying to do.  This is another bad faith attempt to discredit a perfectly legitimate point.

So I put the challenge to you.  Get Lieberman to deny this.  If you can do that I will ask for a clarification for what the LA Weekly, which does good work, wrote.  

http://www.laweekly.com/news/news/holy-j oe-corporate-joe-gi-joe/2614/

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 04:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Now you're spamming your own comments? Geez again.

My comment had nothing to do with "proving" anything, nor do I need to prove anything.  You are the one who replied with "grow up" in response to a very legitimate comment. You might have tried this answer rather than the insulting, juvenile and sarcastic "grow up" in the first place.

And "prove me wrong" is a nice way to try and switch the topic of conversation and throw the argument back on the comments questioning your response. You're actually proving my point. Try just answering the response next time and keep the condescension to yourself.

by michael in chicago 2006-06-01 04:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards


That was a bad, stupid comment for you to make.  Sources are key--and one should be intellectually honest and integral enough to respect such a request.


by billcoop4 2006-06-01 02:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

The source I used is quite reputable.  

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 03:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

And secondary at best, and tertiary in appearance.


by billcoop4 2006-06-01 04:30PM | 0 recs
Where's the source?

Because I've scouted about on Google and can find no reference.

Of course, if he told the Advocate this while a CT senator, perhaps that was too early for Nexis.

But, if so, I'm thinking several libraries in the state will have runs of the rag. One might even be cheeky and call the paper's offices for a clue. (Surely someone here is within the classic six degrees from an Advocate journo?)

If such a striking - mouthwatering to his enemies - statement was actually made by Lieberman, you'd have thought it wouldn't be too difficult to track down.

If a vague reference like this appeared about a darling of the lefty sphere - Feingold, say - you can bet Media Matters would be all over it.

As it's Lieberman, though, anything goes.

I hold no brief for Lieberman.

But this is truly terrible hackery.

Or, as we like to call it in the trade, complete bullshit.

And it will still be bullshit even if someone eventually digs up a reference to the Lieberman quote. If it ever existed. (A stopped clock that is right twice a day is still a crock.)

We have a little comparator here:

Al Gore Used to Be Opposed To Homosexuality
    Gore Said Homosexuality 'Abnormal' And 'Wrong",
    Vowed Not To Take Money From Gay Groups
    Oct. 15, 2000 - Matt Drudge reveals that in 1981 Al Gore said homosexuality is wrong and is an abnormal lifestyle. He also declined gifts from homosexual activists during his Senate race in 1988. Since he is now a strong supporter of homosexual rights, it is interesting that he also said later that year at the presidential debates:

   "I'm going to lay it on the line.. The next president of the United States has to be someone who the American people can believe will stay with his convictions." -- Al Gore, 1988 Democratic Presidential Debate, 2/18/88.

   Source: Drudge Report

Now, I've no idea if Gore ever said what he's quoted as having said there.

There's a damned sight more references from Mr Google to the alleged Gore statement than to the alleged Lieberman statement.

But I'd still call it unreliable without being shown the original quote, and where it came from.

Whatever happened to the online army of crusaders that was going to factcheck the MSM's ass?

by skeptic06 2006-06-01 10:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Read a thoughtful discussion of the risks associated with the netroots efforts to unseat Joe Lieberman...here:


by Daniel DiRito 2006-06-01 08:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

     If by "thoughtful" you mean "long and boring" then I agree--it's extremely thoughtful. The author uses over 3,000 eords to say what could be said in seven, "We shouldn't fight Lieberman--we might lose!"

by Ron Thompson 2006-06-01 09:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

The key thing about this race, is that we are winning no matter what happens on election day. Orgs are being held accountable for BS endorsements, incumbents are realizing that they weren't elected for life, and there is a real discussion going on about how fucked up the DLC'ers are when it comes to Iraq. Ned Lamont may not win, but he is ensuring we are winning.

by Bob Brigham 2006-06-01 09:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards


Thanks for your short and less than thoughtful comments. I knew I forgot that rule that says one can only be a progressive if he or she toes the line...hmmm...but isn't that what we're supposed to be fighting to overthrow? Out with the old...in with the new...where do I get in line for my reprogramming?

by Daniel DiRito 2006-06-01 11:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

But it is long. It is boring. And it does basically say "We might lose."

One don't have to toe the line. But when one writes something long and boring, it seems unreasonable to get upset when someone says it's long and boring.

I have to admit, I don't really see the point of the objection. It seems to me that if Lamont's ground game is strong enough to beat Joe, it will be plenty strong enough to win a CT general election.

by KB 2006-06-01 12:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards


    On your recommendation I went and read the bloody thing, and posted a comment on it. Sorry you didn't like the conmment.

    It seems very much in character for a Lieberman supporter to attack someone who disagrees with his opinion. If my comment was not thoughtful, I only took up about ten seconds of anybody's time. But I'll never get back the five minutes I wasted reading this.

by Ron Thompson 2006-06-01 01:30PM | 0 recs
Man, are you prolific

You've been spamming this comment with this link to your site all over Lamont-related blogs in the past couple of days.  How long will you keep this up?  It's a little tiresome.  How about writing one of your own diaries instead of reposting the same damn column link in comments everywhere?  

BTW, you could at least try to actually comment (that is, write something unique that is at least slightly in response to what the author wrote, not just a reflexive response any time you see the keyword "Lamont") on the diary that you're spamming.  And maybe then include the link to your piece in your signature or something.  It's just plain rude.

by Maura in CT 2006-06-01 09:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Joe Solmonese posted a defense of the Lieberman endoresment at HuffPo:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joe-solmon ese/agents-for-change_b_21946.html

. . . and at FDL, we'vre responded quickly:

http://www.firedoglake.com/2006/05/31/fd l-late-nite-liebermans-gay-defenders-thi nk-youre-stupid/

by Pachacutec 2006-06-01 08:58AM | 0 recs
The tale of the tape

The hrc dictated a big agenda to everyone in 04. Now, it seems as though their agenda is really just to try to back a winning horse and let their policy items go along for the ride as an anonymous rider.

So, special interest groups like the HRC may be able to organically diminish their own power by making mistakes.

But again it is incumbent upon the party as a whole, to embrace reform, and to tell these bozos where to go.

Think clearly for a second: Lieberman represents alot about what is wrong with America. He's basically ignoring the american electorate. He has essentially decided that the lobbyists will get him elected.

Don't think for a minute that special interest groups want the lobbyists to go away.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:09AM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape

For anyone who cares to know historically speaking in 2004, it was not the HRC who placed gay marriage amendments on the ballots in battleground states. In fact, the HRC  tended to want to go slow on the gay rights issue in the courts. They didn't feel it was the right time to bring the issue to the front ground. There were a wide number of positions- some thought it was, and other didn't.

I am not a fan of HRC b/c of various reasons- but this stuff about 2004 isn't one of them.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 10:52AM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape

You say that the bush republicans brought it up. Fine. But the HRC convinced the dems to go along with fighting them.

There's this funny thing that the republicans are trying to do now - try ing to get Kerry to "fight" the "swift boat" people.

The whole game of the GOP is to screw you over by keeping you constantly singing their tune.

In the case of the HRC,  just because someone brings something up doesn't mean you have to fight them for it. I could frankly care less if anyone wants to debate gay marriage. The h rc made sure that everyone vociferously argued the point. Why not instead adopt what you say the HRC position was - go slow? If there's a constitutional ban, so freaking what? Who cares? Just amend the constitution again some point in the future, right?

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape

What the hell are you talking about? Your argument is just factually wrong and strategically not what happened at all. If you need to believe that - that somehow the loses in 2004 were the fault of the gays- that's your shit. But that's not what factually happened. As a gay guy I've been following this since the early 90s. Almost everyone of these nationalize the gay issue campaigns has been by the Republicans. I challenge you to point out one that has not been. gays in the military- who do you think brought it up? The Republicans.  Gay adoption- who do you think brought it up? The Republicans. We, gays, don't need to do a damn thing for them to bring it up. The HRC wanted to avoid the conversation like the plague in 2004, and it was entirely through Republican operatives that it became a center stage issue. Read the commentary by political commentators of the time. It was a central Rove strategy to use a wedge issue- gay rights was it. It's a central strategy of the Republicans to use wedge issues- in the 1980s- race was it. Now, that gay marriage is losing it's force- they are switching to immigration. it's only the height of naivete to believe that they won't switch to another manufatured issue. The idea that gay groups were pushing an agenda nationally or for that matter state wide (except in mostly liberal states) is just a lie. In fact, the HRC has consistently taken the position on gay civil rights to take it slow and not offend anyone. The couples who choose to challenge the constitutionally of bans on gay marriage in some states did so without national support. This was all over the gay press- which I can tell you don't read. That's one of the continous criticisms of HRC that's leveled on it by gay activists. They (HRC) was among the orgs who had a problem with the mayor of SF doing gay marriage in 2004- they felt the timing was wrong. You keep trying to flip it - and blame the minority b/c the majority - and specifically one party of the majority wants to use the issue as a wedge issue. This is a little like blaming blacks b/c they wouldn't just accept jim crow- or its aftermath with things like the Southern strategy. Look, you can have your homophobic opinions, but at least base it on fact. It's hard enough to deal with this sort of stuff without resorting to dishonesty.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 02:53PM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape

first, for the record, I have been a part of the movement within the episcopal church to realize that gay union and gay priests are cool.

second, I oppose gay marriage as lobbied for by the HRC and you. Your idea that the gay marriage agenda is gaining ground is factually wrong.

Lets start where you start: the 90's. A decade of amazing strides for homosexuals.  You went out of the closet and straight on to TV. You make the claim that its the republicans fault, right?

I didn't say it was anyone's fault. What I said was that the HRC used pressure to force the Democrats to +oppose+ the republicans. Here's why I think opposing a gay marriage ban is a bad idea: because every american inthe united states thinks its a bad idea, and this is a democracy.

I have no problem with gays. They are a wonderful people. You might have a problem with democracy. Your post here seems to defend special interests even when they go against the majority. You also seem to indicate here the laughable proposition that people would vote for gay marriage now, if given the chance. This is also wrong.

Here's the bottom line: gay marriage is a dog issue. The HRC backed it, tried to defend it, big mistake.  

Cast not ye pearls to swine, Amigo.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:20PM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape


for those who are interested- you can see such manipulation by Republican operatives and Ken (I am a closet fag) national leader of the Republicans himself. He and his crew were going to places in Ohio saying that if the ban on gay marriage were not passed then evangelical churches would be forced by the govt to perform gay marriages. This also happened in other ways- such as the Dems will burn your bibles leaflets. The point is that trying to gain gays for this vitrol is a little stupid. This isn't about gays- it's not about abortion, and it's not about any of the other issues. It's aobut misdirection. You aren't going to get rid of the misdirection by saccrificing basic American moral principles of right and wrong and fairness. The idea that we still have laws that discriminate against Americans is just a matter of fairness- gay or straight. But to then allow this to become the fault of gays for not just 'accepting' this discrimination is beyond the pale. The democrats lost not b/c of this issue- they lose through a thousand other ways that can't be reducible to anyone issue. it's the character, stupid! Meaning that if you think you are going magically solve your problems by agreeing with the Republicans on this issue- in exactly the same way as the Republicans are claiming they want you to, Then I got a bridge to sell you on prime real estate on swamp land. They will simply move the ball to another issue such as I have mentioned immigration- and from immigration to something else, and from there to something else. The strategy works b/c it's goal is to first demonize a group, and then galvanize a majority-who is not in the group against that smaller group. Then accuse anyone who doesn't 100 percent agree as immoral. This won't change no matter what you do- because the strategy is antithecial to progressives. Not b/c we are about special interests. It's because we are for basic concepts of fairness. You can't on one side argue say for economic fairness for all- and then allow someone to be taxed thousands of dollars more simply b/c they are a member of the minority group of the society- no more than you can allow for the grandfather clauses in voting that used to occur under jim crow.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 03:02PM | 0 recs
Re: The tale of the tape

but identifying someone as a member of a minority group, by their invisible sexual orientation, that could change -  is a mistake.

Case in point: bisexuals. There are many who, when they find the right girl, settle down and raise a family. Do they deserve to be included in the minority group, because at one time, they were gay?

Gay is a wonderful word. It connotes nothing of a minority group and everything of the joy of being identified with a group of men or women you feel comfortable identifying with.

But that identity is not a civil rights issue - gays are simply accepted, everywhere, equally, period.

I have never seen a case of a gay person ever being discriminated against. Ever.

In fact, where this gets really interesting is where a church in alabama, that began a little revolution - saying prayers for people with aids in their community - put a bee in the bonnet of the theocons who were already trying to build theocracy.

Fight this war in the churches. Thats where you are strongest.  Gay priests are much less likely to be pedophiles or suppressed perverts like those guys up in the catholic church.  its time the church come into the 21st century. The church is a social organization.

The group you speak of is not a discriminated minority  - but a loose gathering of very professional, highly paid people who dominate the film, legal, media and arts communities and inhabit the upper echelon of society.

And the people in San Fran that advised them to go for it with this issue, were wrong.  
See.. I was one of the people from san fran who spoke against the issue... and I was right.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

HRC's biggest problem is that they have never passed a single major positive piece policy.  They have been playing defense for way too long and back the guys who did something, anything, to not move further backwards.  Frankly, I don't believe that even if they were an efficient organization that such an accomplishment is even possible.

HRC has been successful in other arenas, like corporate discrimination policies and education.

I worked there very briefly and still have very good friends there.  However, I will never donate to the organization.  They are well meaning, but irrelevant people who focus more on black tie dinners than grassroots organizing in the states.  They are beating a dead horse in Congress.  In order for the gay agenda to move forward GLBT orgs need to encourage progressive candidates to move up the political ladder.

by juls 2006-06-01 10:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

HRC is a rich, mostly white gay male club with a few lesbians (also mostly wealthy and white).

They suck up money that should go to the local glbt equality groups that are doing the real legwork.  HRC will swoop in, stick their logo (which they stole) on whatever is going on and then take the credit.

They need to be defunded.

http://www.stonewalldemocratsnyc.org/200 6/05/the_downward_sp.php#more

by dayspring 2006-06-01 11:13AM | 0 recs

They just got an e-mail saying that they're not getting any more of my money.  Is NGLTF any better?

by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 11:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed

Yeah they tend to be better- at least that was the cases back in the late 90s and early part of this decade when I followed these orgs. They tend to be more inclusive of people of color and of glbt people from different classes. If you were to listen to HRC, all glbt folk are liberal-leaning, middle class and white, but demographically glbt is a wide ranging community, but in terms of races, economic classes and political beliefs. The org you mention tends to be more liberal and definitely more inclusive of people of color than a lot of the orgs out there.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 11:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed

NGLTF is MUCH better.  Matt Foreman (their ED) is awesome.  

However, keep in mind that NGLTF is not grassroots. They do work with the local groups and provide financial and logistical support instead of the token $5k that HRC might through a local org.  

by dayspring 2006-06-01 12:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed

I know matt. he's a good guy. this is a correct statement.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 02:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

this is an interesting point- they seem to accept the majority argument much like the DNC and national Dems used to accept arguments- such as Dems cant win in red states. i would how much of it is the same with these issues. For example, how much education and get out the vote did they do in OHio in 2004? I ask this because the amendment there passed with some pretty odd polling data. Ie, a majority were okay with some form of civil union rights to gays (although not marriage) but the law passed denied rights even to civil union type rights. I just now realized, and am wondering, how much of this was not only a result of right wing spin, but the ineffectual response of orgs like HRC. Maybe because they only appeal to certain in crowd type of gay folks - they didn't have locals letting them know these compromise views were possible?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 11:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

I am sick of that argument that dems can not win red states - where do you think the theo cons are building their sick and twisted machines? They need soft, dark moist places.. they make them out of the hollow of our lives.

The red states are red, because theocons are making them bleed the blood of democrats who are the only people getting any work done. Democrats fight wars to win. They go all the way. They are honest decent folk.

Republicans are surface people who only understand the stupid bickering on their TV set - and only when they're standing right in front of it.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

HRC still gets my support. On balance, they do a goodly bit of PR work nationally and lobbying in Washington. Additionally, they do send money to some states to support work there.

But aside from that, many posters above have missed the point: Interest groups produce scorecards that rank legislators according to matters of interest to the group. But a voter must balance conflicting scorecards. For example, a lesbian feminist in Pennsylvania of course wants to vote out homophobic Santorum (very low HRC score), but does she wanst to vote for anti-choice Casey (very low NARAL score)? Is HRC right in supporting Casey, and is NARAL wrong? Or is it the other way around? Well, I think both groups are right within the spheres of what they score -- but voters must still balance the matters that interest them when they go to vote.

by S1 2006-06-01 11:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Donate to your local groups instead.  HRC is more concerned about funding themselves.  

Talk to people who work at local glbt organizations and they'll tell you plenty of HRC horror stories.  

by dayspring 2006-06-01 12:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

I also donate to local groups -- when there's an effective group that knows how to use money.

Unfortunately, state and local groups are a waste of money in much of the country. That's a fact.

by S1 2006-06-02 04:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Mass equality isn't a waste.

Gill Foundation isn't a waste.

Empire State Pride Agenda isn't a waste.

National Stonewall Democrats is DEFINETLY NOT a waste.

by dayspring 2006-06-10 07:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

I monitor HRC's websites for potentially useful information, and I take their endorsements into the mix when I'm choosing the dogs I'll bet on, but I always seek further. And I stopped giving them money a couple of years ago.

I'm reaching the same relationship with Emily's List, as of the 2006 cycle.

I monitor the endorsements from the Victory Fund
http://www.victoryfund.org/ and I like their list because they pay a lot of attention to state-level races, which is where some of my political energy is moving lately. But, again, their support is  only one component in the mix. And they cast a narrow net for candidates, so I have to look more widely, as I'm not a one-issue voter.  

by Christopher Walker 2006-06-01 11:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

I do pretty much the same thing -- count on groups to do some homework for me, but then balance everything myself.

For example, I also check out the Victory Fund. But they have included gay or lesbian Republicans who I regard as poor candidates otherwise. (Much as I want to see more gays and lesbians in public office, I'd never vote for a person solely on the basis of sexual orientation, any more than I would base my vote on race, gender, religion, or other factors.)

The point is, these groups help get out information on their spheres -- that's why they're called "interest groups" -- but they're not experts on the "entire" candidate.

by S1 2006-06-02 04:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

It's true that the Victory Fund occasionally backs a candidate from another party, but not as often as HRC, and usually only for a municipal or county office.  Cruising down the current slate [ok, snicker] the only Republicans I spot are a county councilman and Scott Dibble, an incumbent state senator in Minnesota who is not facing a DFA opponent this cycle.

But you're right. Any one-interest group is providing only part of the picture when they make an endorsement. One has to look further.  

by Christopher Walker 2006-06-02 07:52AM | 0 recs
Typical Stoller diary...

...full of questionable allegations whose "evidence" is another blog that he agrees with.

You can eventually turn it down to an opinion piece in an "MSM" article where Lieberman is alleged to have said the three words stripped of all context.  And it's not even clear he said it at all.

Matt, I would think even you would be ashamed of tripe like this.  Instead, when someone calls you on your sloppy work, you tell them to "grow up."

Do your damn job, and get the actual quote.  Get the date it was published, and the context in which the three words were uttered.

by JPhurst 2006-06-01 12:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Typical Stoller diary...

hey back off. matt does sloppy, ineffective work but at least he's consistently sloppy and ineffective.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 02:23PM | 0 recs
Re: Typical Stoller diary...

You know, if you want to take issue with what I write, you could try to do some work yourself.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 04:08PM | 0 recs
Re: Typical Stoller diary...

work... I hate the word... as I hate death.. and all montagues..

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:32PM | 0 recs
Posting on MyDD

isn't exactly his JOB, Matt.

by NCDem 2006-06-02 05:54AM | 0 recs
Still searching for the Advocate article

Can't find it, but this was interesting:
http://old.newhavenadvocate.com/articles /lieberman2.html

The reporter says:
"You said at the time that homosexuality is not an acceptable lifestyle choice, that it is not OK to be gay, it's not as good a choice as being heterosexual."

Lieberman does not directly respond.  It's probably in the Congressional Record or something.

by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 12:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Still searching for the Advocate article

Not bad finding that... I didn't figure there'd be such a history of that quote without some basis of truth to it, especially when it's not seriously challenged.

by auronrenouille 2006-06-01 04:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

There's also the problem that there are few "perfect" candidates for gays to vote for.  It's hard to weed through the rethoric and whatnot to find someone truely worthy of supporting (if this was the sole determining factor).

It's part of the reason why I don't vote strictly based on that.  I had a friend in 04 baffled at why I wouldn't vote for Nader since he supposedly supported same-sex marriages.  He failed to realize that I look at other things.

by auboy2006 2006-06-01 12:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Also, Kerry kicked ass + almost damn near won the mother. 50,000 votes , and losing in a state that went for al gore in 2000 - if kerry would have won ohio he would have won it all.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 02:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

kerry lost b/c of kerry. I like this revisionist history wherein its a single issue that lost the race for him. he lost when he didn't protect himself against the swiftboating of his character. he lost when he said "I voted for it, before I voted against it." He lost when he wouldn't say " Mr President you are lying to the American people." He lost when no one gave him a strong enough challenge in the primary toward the end to make certain that he remained in battle form. He lost when he made his convention speech about 1974 rather than 2004.  He lost when he couldn't be anything more than a rather dull speaker. he lost when he limited his strategy to have to rely on winning in a perfect storm situation by being dependent on winning Ohio (a republican state no matter what the year).  He lost because he never went for the juglar in the debates- he kept going for the zings rather than the KO. He lost when  he was afraid to call himself liberal although no one really cared when polled on the question. He lost b/c he was senator, and senators have voting records which typically kill them. ANd yes, he lost b/c the other side was just plain nastier and wanted it more. They were willing to lie about anything because the means in the Christianist war on our society always justifies the means. The rapture is coming so they need to prepare the earth. What you don't get I think is that it's not for them about being gay or straight. Sex outside of marriage - gay or straight- is a sin for an evangelical. Not only is abortion and gay sex sinful- so are sex outside of marriage and contraceptives. That's that the reality of the beliefs- and no one issue can be reducible to being blamed for the lose in 2004.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 03:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

The reality of belief. Wow what a concept.

Here's mine: Kerry kicks ass. And anyone who thinks otherwise can kiss mine.

by turnerbroadcasting 2006-06-01 09:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

one correction- I say evangelical- I should say conservative evangelicals- b/c there are despite appearances moderate and liberal evangelicals who are only now starting to retake their faith

by bruh21 2006-06-01 03:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Matt, if scorecards are "largely irrelevant," how else do you think that interest groups should rate the performance of incumbents?

The Sierra Club and LCV issue scorecards based on the actual votes of members of Congress and, to answer blogswarm's comment, they actually do weigh some votes more heavily than others.

Without scorecards, we would have a situation where any candidate could say "I'm for the environment" or "I'm for sexual equality" and few voters would have the time to do research to refute that.

Scorecards can also often empower challengers--an incumbent with a bad scorecard might engender a challenger who attacks him/her on that basis, and s/he would have an objective leg to stand on.

by rayspace 2006-06-01 12:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Scorecards are largely irrelevant for Matt because they disprove his preconceived notion that Lieberman is a conservative.

This is all along the lines of what most Lieberman haters have done all along.  "Forget about his votes, it's what he says that counts."

That way you can always find a quote, even if you've completely wrenched it out of context, to show that your enemy is a right winger.  And ignore the voting record.

by JPhurst 2006-06-01 01:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Matt, if scorecards are "largely irrelevant," how else do you think that interest groups should rate the performance of incumbents?

That's a good question.  The NRA uses a good model of always intervening towards the more gun rights extremist position, as measured by key votes on gun rights and by a willingness to support right-wing politics in general.  That's why they almost always endorse a Republican if the candidates are equal on their issue, and go for the more right-wing Republican in primaries.

Scorecards are only as relevant as they relate to an overall ideological goal.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 04:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

Okay, but no liberal group solely uses scorecards to endorse candidates.  When LCV issues its "Dirty Dozen" list, they always choose candidates who have actually introduced heinous legislation, rather than just those who scored 0 on their scorecard.

If your point in lauding the NRA was that LCV and the Sierra Club should always endorse Democrats because they're automatically going to be better for the environment, again, no--you can't compare their voting records and say that Landrieu or Ben Nelson is better on the environment than Lincoln Chafee.  (And, as I've posted before, I would vote for Whitehouse over Chafee this year).  As far as the 2 Dems I cited here being "overall more [progressive]," which would fit your criterion--no again.  They are just as bad as Chafee on non-environmental issues.

Scorecards are a useful tool, but they can't be--and aren't--the only ones that liberal interest groups use to make endorsements.

by rayspace 2006-06-01 08:38PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

This makes no sense as Nelson will never run against Chafee.

His opponent this year is Pete Ricketts.

Unless something really crazy has happened in the last 24 hours that I don't know about.


by phatass 2006-06-01 11:23PM | 0 recs

There used to be a time when the front-page posters weren't pricks.

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:01PM | 0 recs

needs to learn to actually respond to his readers' concerns without being an asshole.

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:08PM | 0 recs
In defense of Matt

Hey, there've been a few times where I've called Matt a prick too, but I think you people are wrong on this one.  

Just because he can't immediately provide the original source for the quote doesn't mean that his information is untrustworthy.
Give this a bit of time and check out my post from a bit earlier.  It appears to me that not only did Lieberman say homosexuality is wrong, he called it an unacceptable way to live.

by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 01:16PM | 0 recs

That's not why I called him a prick.  I called him a prick because his one-sentence pithy pissy derisive comment-replies makes him a frigging jerk.  The simple answer would be, "Actually, I don't know where the original quote came from. If someone can find it, that would be great!"... Instead he chooses to say such witty retorts as "Grow up."

This blog as long grown up (I thought) and grown past such shit.

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:21PM | 0 recs

by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 01:25PM | 0 recs
Re: True


These guys are being jerks.  They know Lieberman said this, the LA Weekly is a good paper.  They are just trying to get a rise out of me, which they unfortunately did.  

Most of them have a history of trolling on Lieberman threads because they don't like progressives.  ColoDem has a history, for example, of making ill-informed statements about Connecticut politics, always to the benefit of Lieberman.  JPHurst and turnerbroadcasting tend to attack me in quite personal terms rather than doing the work of actually thinking through issues or doing research.

Rather than defending Lieberman's statements, which they can't do, they made me the issue.  I'm not the issue, and Lieberman's homophobic past speaks for itself, as does their obvious attempts to kill the messenger.

I usually ignore these people because they are a minor and loud minority that ruin the community for normal people.  I should have done so this time as well.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 04:16PM | 0 recs
Re: True


I don't know if you'll respond to this or not, but my comments on this issue are:  (1) Neither supportive of Lieberman; nor (2) Intended as personal attacks.  I simply disagree with posting a quote from a secondary source like this where you haven't explored the context of the original statement.  Do I think Lieberman may very well have made this statement?  Wouldn't surprise me in the least, and regardless I think it's time to kick that bum out of office.  But in the interests of fairness, I would just hope that folks like yourself - whose blogging I enjoy even if I don't always agree with it - would refrain from posting quotes in situations like this.  

I don't know the personal history of anyone you mentioned above, so maybe some folks do have an axe to grind, but that's my only point.  Incidentally I hope someone can find the original quote, as I'd like to see exactly what it does say.  

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 05:02PM | 0 recs
Re: True

situations like this.

You mean where he's sources as saying it in a reputable newspaper like the LA Weekly?  Then we disagree.

by Matt Stoller 2006-06-01 05:15PM | 0 recs
Re: True

OK, I guess I'll stop beating a dead horse then.  But I have to be honest - I'm pretty shocked that you're acting like you don't understand where people are coming from with these criticisms.  I wouldn't have thought that MYDD would engage in this kind of a practice, but I guess I was wrong.  Fair enough.

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 05:54PM | 0 recs
Re: True

actually I dont get it either- why is this a bad source?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 05:55PM | 0 recs
Re: True

how is it wrong to quote the LA Weekly? Am I missing something here b/c I have read this whole line of attack down the thread- what exactly is wrong with using a secondary source so long as the sources are from reliable sources?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 05:55PM | 0 recs
Re: True

I don't have any particular problem with the fact that the quote is from a secondary source.  My issue is that the secondary source here seems to have pulled the original quote out of context - in an article that is (justified or not) a hatchet job on Lieberman.  As a general rule, I think if you're going to use someone's words against them you have an obligation to clearly present what they said.  The quote here clearly doesn't do that and I think Matt himself should have at least read the original article before posting this.  Disagree if you want, but this is exactly the kind of thing that we usually get worked up over Drudge and his ilk doing.  I personally think MYDD is better than that.    

by HSTruman 2006-06-01 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: True

why is it clear that it is as you say a "hatchet job"? and what about matt's point that he has had three years to say that this was not what he meant? And regardless of this quote hasn't JL made it pretty clear what the feels of gay rights issue such as the right to marry? I am asking a big piture question here b/c everytime someone comes on to a blog like mydd or dailykos to critique someone I have noticed a tendency for their supporters to nitpick. For example, the other day- this exact technique of kill the messenger was used against a Sirota piece on D Kos b/c the particular person didn't think that the article had said that JL was a "centrist." They said that he was a member of a centrist organization, and in that posters mind that made sirota a fraud and a liar. I am seeing that same sort of over the top rhectoric here. Ie, comparision to drudge etc. I suppose if one only read an individual attack there is no way to notice this- but over several diaries on JL and HRC I have noticed a pattern of saying- well that's not what they are or that's not what they said etc. The problem you face as I told the commentor over a D Kos is that these aren't just impressions based on any one quote or statement. If for example, if Matt is wrong to use the quote from the LA Weekly (?) which I know is a reputable paper, does that mean the overall point about JL is wrong? Does he have a different view of gay rights than this? if so- what is it? I think matt's point and I agree with this- is that if you are claiming that the quote we read isn't right and that there is some missing context - then its up to you to prove your argument rather than throwing out perjoratives such as comparing him to drudge. I don't always agree with his opinions on here- I thought he was wrong about Kennedy the other day for example b/c his argument was too simplistic. But, you and others on this thread are taking it a step further than saying you disagree with his argument. Drudge afterall is a liar- are you calling mat that?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 07:54PM | 0 recs
Re: True

You and I clearly disagree about whether it is appropriate to post a lifted quote from a secondary source - which gives zero context regarding the quote - without looking at the original statement.  Fine.  I personally think that responsible bloggers don't take that kind of action and then demand that someone else PROVE THEM wrong, but I suppose there are no clear cut rules in this medium and people can have different ideas about what is or is not professional.  However, if a journalist did the exact same thing it would - without a doubt - be considered reprehensible.

As far as your statement that I am somehow attacking the messenger b/c I don't like the message, I would ask whether or not you've actually read any of my posts.  I HATE Joe Lieberman.  I support Ned Lamont.  I just think that this particular post was unfair for the reasons that I've cited and that - precisely b/c JL is so bad - there is no reason to resort to such unprofessional behavior.  Lieberman is a hack and it's easy to prove that without throwing up three word quotes taken out of context.  Indeed, I would suggest that perhaps you are letting your own (justified) dislike of Lieberman cloud your own views on whether using this quote was acceptable.  Would you feel the same way if someone did the same thing with a statement a politician you like made?  I would guess the answer would be 'No.'  

by HSTruman 2006-06-02 05:07AM | 0 recs
Wrong on all counts Matt

If I don't like progressives, then I must be a self-hating progressive or something.  I know you and a few other bloggers have tried to turn the jihad against Joe into a litmus test, but it doesn't work that way.

As for my comment, I'm not trying to get a rise out of you.  I'm trying to get the source.

But you still haven't been able to come up with it, so you resort to claims that anyone who doesn't kiss your ass is part of the "minority."

In the absence of any substance from you, I will have to defer to HRC as to whether Liberman is homophobic or not.  I trust their analysis over yours anyday.

by JPhurst 2006-06-01 07:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

why isn't the source the LA weekly? isn't that what he said the quote came from?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 07:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

The LA Weekly article is the source of the claim that Lieberman told the New Haven Advocate that "homosexuality is wrong."

The actual source for the quote would be the report in the New Haven Advocate, or the transcript of the interview, or what have you.

I'm not saying that bloggers need to follow academic standards of citing sources, but those are what I'm familiar with. If I wanted to write an article and say that Lieberman said this, I wouldn't want to say "According to so-and-so, Such-and-such reports Lieberman said it." I wouldn't cite the LA Weekly piece - I'd go find the info on the New Haven Advocate article or transcript or whatever and I would cite that.

If I couldn't get a hold of that, I would cite the New Haven Advocate as cited in the LA Weekly. But my statement would now be more questionable. And I would still be expected to provide details on the New Haven Advocate source, because there would be an expectation that the LA Weekly would have given a more complete reference.

Again, this is how it would work if I were writing a paper, not a commentary or a blog post. But I do wish that instead of this:

"Lieberman, who told the New Haven Advocate that "homosexuality is wrong," joined with notorious homo-hater Jesse Helms in voting to take away federal funding from schools that counsel suicidal gay teens that it's okay to be gay."

the LA Weekly writer had said something like:

"Lieberman, who told the New Haven Advocate in a [date] interview that "homsoexuality is wrong" . . ."


"On [date], the New Haven Advocate quoted Lieberman as saying "Homosexuality is wrong.""

The idea of citing a source is that someone who doubts you should be able to confirm that you're speaking the truth. It's why bloggers insist on links to articles and evidence. I'm just not sure there's a good trail here to follow.

by Dave Thomer 2006-06-01 08:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

But he did provide you a source- you just think that source isn't sufficient according to your standard. He's right in the sense that if you are claiming that the info is wrong- that the LA Weekly got it wrong- then its up to you to demonstrate that. It's sort unrealistc to ask him to prove to you that the LA Weekly didn't get the quote wrong. ALso- it still doesn't answer the larger question - if this quote were not true, why hasn't anyone of the L people been able to get another quote from L saying thats not what he said. I would expect the HRC to get that sort of clarification before they endorse him. WHich is the larger the point that Matt is making- regardless of whether you believe the LA Weekly or not - there is the issue of whether HRC is checking into candidates for endorement thoroughly to make sure they are indeed backing their interesst. THe HRC always makes safe bets- and i feel that is the main thrust of the point. That L is not a friend to gays- most of us who are gay go no duh- really, because I don't know many people that thought he was. The real concern is why are interest groups doing what they are doing.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 08:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

He's right in the sense that if you are claiming that the info is wrong- that the LA Weekly got it wrong- then its up to you to demonstrate that. It's sort unrealistc to ask him to prove to you that the LA Weekly didn't get the quote wrong.

If I make the definite claim that "the LA Weekly got it wrong," then, yes, I should offer evidence. The burden of proof is on me.

If, on the other hand, I say "I don't know if the LA Weekly got it right, and you didn't give me enough info to find out," then the burden of proof is on the person making the claim that the quote is valid.

Playing fair with the reader means giving the reader the info necessary to verify. It's like doing a math problem - you show your work so that other people can follow how you got there. When they can do that, they will probably believe in your claim more strongly.

Look at this statement in the LA Weekly piece:

"A little-noticed Jim VandeHei story in the September 11, 2000, Wall Street Journal detailed how Lieberman was the insurance industry's 'go-to guy on the Democratic side of the aisle.' "

That's a source. If I want to, I know exactly where to go in order to check this statement and read the entire article. I can then see how well the LA Weekly has conveyed the full context. I wish the author had provided similar detail in his other references.

And yes, I acknowledge again that newspapers and blog posts aren't academic papers, and the standards are looser. But I do think similar impulses are at work. That's why bloggers are often expected to provide links to their evidence in the first place.

by Dave Thomer 2006-06-01 09:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

No, the LA Weekly said that Lieberman had made the statement in question to the New Haven Advocate. People have asked for the link to where that was said in the New Haven Advocate itself. A search of their website and archives doesn't yield anything, neither does a google search.

You find references to the infamous quote on a number of blogs and on the LA Weekly but nothing comes up from the New Haven Advocate who he allegedly said it to and nothing from any mainstream media came up in my google search either.

I'm not saying he couldn't have said it, even to the New Haven Advocate, but that's not proven verifible as of yet and that's what the issue is. And I'm also no fan at all of Lieberman. I'd just like the declared primary source for the quote to be prove legitimate.

by Quinton 2006-06-01 08:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

so you are accusing not only Matt but also the LA Weekly of shoddy reporting?

by bruh21 2006-06-01 08:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Wrong on all counts Matt

Yes.  The LA weekly article should have said when Lieberman made the statement.  Doesn't mean, incidentally, that JL didn't say this or that he isn't bad on gay rights.  It just means that this wasn't a very well cited article.  

by HSTruman 2006-06-02 05:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

"Scorecards are largely irrelevant for Matt because they disprove his preconceived notion that Lieberman is a conservative."

Scorecards are for dummies who would rather be manipulated by interest groups than find out for themselves.

"This is all along the lines of what most Lieberman haters have done all along.  "Forget about his votes, it's what he says that counts."

JoeMo has voted for Bush's most odious policies from day one. A few liberal leaning votes won't lead me away from his real record of collaboration and capitulation.

Some politicians are masters at dragging a red herring across the trail that leads to their real records. Don't let them divert you from it.

by Sitkah 2006-06-01 01:20PM | 0 recs

Scorecards are very useful tools to START your research.  It is impossible to be an expert on everything, and these scorecards provide useful information (with the caveat being that you should delve deeper if you don't trust the interest group).  The problem is... some of these interest groups then use these scorecards (and these scorecards alone) as a basis for endorsing /not endorsing candidates without looking at the broader picture.  I actually LIKE LCV's scorecard.  However, I think they should stop right there, and be simply a lobbying organization. Endorsing Republicans is repugnant...

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:26PM | 0 recs
The following quote was taken out of context

"I think if two people want to get married let them get married." Ned Lamont

What he actually said was, "I think if two people want to get married let them get married, but government should not recognize those marriages."
This was in a reputable newspaper, the New York Times, I think, and the burden of proof is on Ned Lamont supporters to prove he didn't say it.

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:36PM | 0 recs

I'm remembering now... He actually told ME this, and I have a recording (I think).  So, the burden of proof is on Lamont supporters to PROVE that he didn't tell me this (on record), and if they can't prove it, I'll release the tape.

(I think there's 2 Catch-22's in there... maybe 3).

by NCDem 2006-06-01 01:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Actually
Is that quote supposed to bother me?
My response would be, "yeah, but as long as the government IS handing out marriage certificates, they have to do it fairly."
by ChgoSteve 2006-06-01 01:48PM | 0 recs

is apparently lost on the masses... I made up a quote... Of course he didn't say that, yet I like how you defend him.

by NCDem 2006-06-02 05:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Actually

unless he is advocating that the govt shouldn't be involved in marriage at all- and that would mean eliminating the almost 1200 special rights that are given to married couples not seen by any other relationship in the US (even unmarried straight couples) then he's at best avoiding the issue, and at worst saying exactly what is being claimed in this diary.

by bruh21 2006-06-01 01:53PM | 0 recs
cite your source

The burden of proof is on you.

NOW recently endorsed Lamont as he met their stringent critera for endorsement, one of which is support for same-sex marriage.

by Scarce 2006-06-01 02:27PM | 0 recs
Ding Ding Ding...

Scarce gets the prize for "getting it"...

but not really...

My reply...

Read the 100 posts above this one to catch the irony...

by NCDem 2006-06-02 05:48AM | 0 recs

FWIW, you can ask Paul Bass yourself, the reporter who wrote it back in 2000, about the contentious quote above. He stands by his words.

p.bass (at) newhavenindependent dot org  

by Scarce 2006-06-02 06:50AM | 0 recs
I just asked him...

He says, and I quote verbatim...

"I never quoted the words you reference. Your source was misinformed."

by NCDem 2006-06-02 07:05AM | 0 recs
Of course...

I'm lying again... And again, this is not "a source".  "Ask so-and-so".

Give the source.

by NCDem 2006-06-02 07:19AM | 0 recs
So I'm starting to agree with the above...

Where is the original quote? Why are only secondary sources being cited?

by NCDem 2006-06-02 07:06AM | 0 recs

...I'm guessing it was laziness.  Now Stoller refuses to cite the article on principle.  He'd have to admit that he was sloppy.

by JPhurst 2006-06-02 07:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

HRC endorsed Sen. Gordon Smith in Oregon in 2002 campaign helping him further the Bush agenda against human rights and for war and every other kind of atrocity. More of the same.

by cmpnwtr 2006-06-01 01:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

My letter to HRC (Human Rights Campaign, as opposed to the junior Senator from NY):

Dear HRC,

Please cancel my membership.  Even though I recognize that Sen Lieberman has done much good for the progressive movement, your endorsement of him, given his opposition to key gay issues and his clear statement that 'homosexuality is wrong', indicates to me that you are more interested in kissing his ass than in getting things done.

You need not have endorsed him; you need not have endorsed his opponent.  You could have stayed out of this race.

Instead you tramped the organization around.

That is neither dignified nor is it the way to achieve our goals.

.... [contact information]


William Cooper

by billcoop4 2006-06-01 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Endorsements and Scorecards

"grow up"

Feeling a wee bit stressed? Things not going your way lately?

Don't take your day out on folks whom you invite to your blog to offer opinion when their opinion isn't your own.

Your commentary is getting a bit stale. Shit or get off the pot. Cough up the original, legitimate source or back off and do the "adult thing"-- it's called admitting you were in error. Until then, IMHO, you've de-ligitamized yourself and as attached to your cause, you're etching into them too.

You can't take back what you wrote but you can fix it--or not--the choice is up to you, and how you handle it will reflect your sincerity.

Until then,


by SeedFreak 2006-06-01 06:31PM | 0 recs


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