AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Tue Aug 04, 2015 9:39 am

Nader for President 2004

Nader for President 2004 is the campaign for consumer activist Ralph Nader in the 2004 United States Presidential election campaign.

Nader 2000 vs 2004

In 2000, the Association of State Green Parties nominated Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke as Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates. They succeeded in being placed on the ballot in 44 states and received 2,882,897 votes, or 2.7% of all votes cast [1]. While the vote was less than early polling indicated was likely, it was sufficient to ensure the U.S. Green Party, would be on the ballot in 22 states and the District of Columbia in the 2004 election.

Late in 2003, Ralph Nader declared that he would not be the party's nominee for as Presidential candidate in 2004. However, in February, 2004, Nader announced his intention to run as an independent. A few months later, Nader stated that he would accept the "endorsement" rather than the "nomination" of the Green Party, as well as of other third parties.

The most notable opposition came from lawyer and activist David Cobb, who wanted to run a campaign focused on building the party. On June 26 the Green Party of the United States convention rejected the idea of an endorsement for Nader - who is not a member of the organisation - and chose Cobb as its presidential candidate. [2].

While Nader has won support from the Reform Party, which may get him on the ballot in seven states, his failure to gain support from the Green Party makes his task of just getting on to the ballot elsewhere a formidable task.

Nader is relaxed about support from the Reform Party despite some major differences on policies. "There's no quid pro quo here. They're very kind to let us use their ballot access, because the Democrats are using dirty tricks to try to deny millions of voters an opportunity to vote for the Nader-Peter Miguel Camejo ticket," Nader said on CNN's Crossfire program. Areas of agreement between the Reform Party platform and the Nader/Camejo platform include: denunciation of the Iraq military adventure and rapid withdrawal from Iraq, repeal of the Patriot Act, withdrawal from NAFTA and WTO, an end to the brutal traffic and exploitation of immigrant labor, an end to support for despotic regimes abroad, an end to irresponsibly deficit spending and pork-barrel corporate welfare, a crackdown on corporate unpatriotism, crime and fraud, and shifting the tax burden away from work. Nader's acceptance speech at the Reform Party Convention elaborated on these and other areas of strong agreement, as does the Reform Party website and his cover story interview with the 2000 Reform Party candidate Pat Buchanan in American Conservative Magazine.[3] [4] [5]

Unlike his 2000 Presidential bid - which attracted widespread support - his 2004 campaign has struggled. Many who supported Nader's 2000 Presidential bid have refrained from supporting his current campaign.

Asked about Normon Solomon's opposition to his campaign, Nader argued that while they agreed on policies they disagreed on strategy: "... he believes in anybody but Bush, closes down his mind, and thinks that the Democrats own their votes, instead of having to earn them. For example, the Democrats, Kerry and Edwards voted for the war. They voted for the Patriot Act. They're all for corporate globalization. They are for the death penalty. And these are two parties that are corrupt with money. They're turning their back on the country. They've turned Washington, D.C. into corporate occupied territory," Nader said on CNN's Crossfire program.

Nader's campaign has also encountered organised opposition from the Democratic Party, which fears a repeat of the 2000 Presidential campaign where a very tight vote saw the Republican candidate George W. Bush win by the narrowest of margins.

However, exit polling from the Florida presidential election in 2000 shows that if Nader were not on the ballot, Bush would have defeated Gore 49% to 47%. [6][7] Recent polls have also shown that in Florida and in the nation as a whole, more Nader voters would choose Bush as a second choice over Kerry, if their first choice Nader is not on their state's ballot. That means even if Instant Runoff Voting were in place, Bush would get more Nader votes in the second-round count than Kerry would. [8].

In early July, Nader gave up trying to qualify for the ballot in Arizona after the Secretary of State estimated the campaign fell 550 signatures short of the threshold. Announcing his withdrawal, Nader blamed the lack of "safeguards against harassing challenges by opposing political forces … In this case the deep pocketed harassers were the Democrats and their three law firms." [9] Nader elaborated in a July 7 interview on Democracy Now: "They had filed suit on such things like one of our signature gatherers-- it takes 14,500 signatures to get on the Arizona ballot. One of the signature gatherers collected 550 signatures. He happened to be an ex-felon who paid his debt to society. He had been on juries. He was a registered voter. They found that he did not pay allegedly a $400 fine to the state, and they wanted to knock off 550 signatures. That would have cost us long days in litigation, and we had to drop our effort. We have limited funds under Federal Election Commission regulation. The democrats have unlimited funds outside of any regulation. That's what they're doing in Oregon and elsewhere. I told John Kerry to-- words to the wise. He may be presiding over a situation, whether he knows it or not, that can be a mini Watergate." [10]

As of mid-September the Nader campaign states that it is on the ballot in 35 states, 10 of those under court challenge, that it is suing to gain ballot access in 7 states that have blocked it, is awaiting petition validation in 2 states, and will conduct a write-in campaign in 6 states. [11]

The California Peace and Freedom Party opted to endorse jailed American Indian Movement activist Leonard Peltier instead of Nader. [12] The Missouri Secretary of State's office has ruled that the Nader campaign failed to get the requisite 10,000 signatures to qualify for the ballot there. [13]

In Michigan the Nader campaign stopped collecting signatures when he received the Reform Party nomination, only to have the Republican Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land [14] deny him the Reform Party ballot status because of a complaint by a rival Michigan state Reform Party who lost a bid last year to become the state's affiliate of the national Reform Party. Land claimed she could not resolve the dispute between rival claimants to the Reform Party ballot line, even though the national Reform Party had resolved the dispute a year earlier by an official vote, and a Reagan-appointed federal judge upheld her decision [15].

The Nader campaign is appealing that decision, and had filed the few thousand signatures it had gathered for Independent status in case it had to argue in court for more time to gather signatures as a partial remedy for being denied its expected Reform Party ballot line. The Republican Party, meanwhile, collected enough signatures on its own to place Nader on the ballot as an Independent, and prevailed in the Michigan Appeals Court over the two Democrats on the four-member Michigan Board of Canvassers who voted to deny Nader Independent ballot status on the argument that the Republican-gathered signatures were illegitimate. The Reform Party was founded by Ross Perot, whose 19% of the vote in the 1992 Presidential election is widely considered to have helped Clinton defeat Bush that year. Nader has consistently described his campaign as a "second front against George W. Bush." [16][17][18] [19][20]

Democrat criticisms on accepting funds from Republican supporters

In early July 2004, the San Francisco Chronicle revealed that of the more than $1 million raised - mostly in small donations - by Nader for his campaign, $23,000 of $275,000 in contributions larger than $1,000 had originated from known Republican contributors. While the amount represented a small percentage of his campaign funding, it was seized up by the Democratic Party as evidence that the Republican Party were mustering support for Nader to run as a 'spoiler'.

The Nader campaign responded with data showing that only 4% of his funds were from Republicans, far less than the 25% of his 2000 votes that came from Republicans, and that the same Republican donors donated more to Democrats this year than to Nader. [21]

In a debate with former Democrat Presidential aspirant Howard Dean at the National Press Club in Washington, Nader rejected Democrat calls to return the contributions as a "smear". Pointing out that Kerry too had also received money from former Republican contributors, Nader asked Dean "So you'll urge John Kerry to return all the money?". [22]

"You're talking about a minuscule amount, 5 percent, from Republican donors, many of whom I have worked with, Gino Pelushi (ph) on these pollution in the Mesabi Iron Range. You know Bob Monks, the key person on corporate governance issues. We've worked with these people," Nader said on CNN's Crossfire program.

However, Nader's vice presidential candidate, Peter Camejo, rejected accepting Republican money. "If you oppose the war, if you're against the Patriot Act, your money is welcome. But if your purpose is because you think this is going to have an electoral effect, we don't want that money. I take no money from people who disagree with us," Camejo told the San Francisco Chronicle. [23] (Camejo is a member of the Green Party of the United States).

When Camejo's views were put to Nader he disagreed, seeing no basis on which to refuse contributions from individuals. "If the Republican National Committee comes up and say, hey, here's some money, we'll throw it back into their face. We don't want that kind of money. But if individuals, whether for civil liberties purposes, because they want more voices and choices on the ballot for the American people to choose from, want to give us funds, why not?," he said on CNN's Crossfire.

More troubling have been revelations that Republican activists have mobilised conservative supporters in an attempt to ensure he is listed on the ballot, in an attempt to split the liberal vote. But it is troubling for democracy, not for the Kerry campaign, which polls show stands to gain as much as it loses in the voting booth from Nader's campaign.

Equally troubling to the anti-democratic contortions being made by the Republican Secretary of State and the Citizens for a Sound Economy CSE in Michigan to force Nader to run Independent rather than Reform Party, are the even worse anti-democratic contortions by the Democrat Secretary of State Bill Bradbury in Oregon, who was castigated recently by a Democrat judge for biased application of existing laws and non-existent laws to invalidate already county-validated Nader petition signatures. [24] [25]

In Iowa there are reports that "As they left a Bush campaign rally in Cedar Rapids Tuesday, activists were greeted by volunteers seeking help with 'a project to help the president'. The volunteers were seeking signatures on petitions to get Nader's name on the ballot, carefully explaining that Nader's presence would be helpful to Bush because the former consumer activist would drain votes from Kerry." This site claims that the volunteers were Nader supporters [26]. While it is not clear who they were it would be a shocking revelation if true.

Polls showing Nader pulling more support from Bush prove that the Nader campaign, however, was correct in its assertion that all the Republicans would accomplish by pushing its supporters to help Nader's ballot access efforts is to risk losing them to Nader's cause. This is evidenced further by John McCain's recent support, in his role as chair of the Reform Institute, for Nader's ballot access in Florida, despite polls showing Nader pulling more votes from Bush than from Kerry in that pivotal swing state, just as exit polls show he did in 2000. [27] [28] [29]

And Republican mobilization to assist Nader has been scant and has had little impact other than in Michigan, where Republican state officials and a Reagan-appointed federal judge have thus far managed to block Nader's intended run as the Reform Party candidate. Thus it appears that both major parties are working to block Nader's ballot access wherever his campaign might mobilize voters to abandon Bush or Kerry over popular issues they both oppose and Nader advocates, like rapid withdrawal from Iraq, elimination of income tax on incomes under $100,000, repeal of the Patriot Act, withdrawal from NAFTA, FTAA and WTO and single-payer Medicare-For-All universal health coverage.

Citizens for a Sound Economy selectively backs Nader's 2004 ballot bid

A case in point is Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE), which traditionally backs predictable conservative causes, in July 2004 it placed phone calls to supporters to attend an open nominating convention to place Nader on the presidential ballot in Oregon, claiming it would help Bush's re-election effort. By clumsily issuing statements to the press regarding its cynical motives, the CSE provoked a backlash, and few supporters carried out its directive. This contrasts with the CSE's effort in Michigan, where it gathered 45,000 signatures in a short period of time to push Nader onto the ballot as an Independent while Republican state officials and a Reagan-appointed federal judge blocked Nader from his expected and intended status as the Reform Party candidate.

Both the Bush and Kerry campaigns expect the result of the Presidential vote in Oregon to be close. In a close election, the seven electoral college votes the state carries could prove decisive. However, an anti-Nader website actually cites polls that show Nader's presence on the ballot in Oregon results in a net gain for Kerry over Bush. [30][31]

To be listed on the ballot in Oregon, a candidate must submit signatures of either 15,000 registered voters or gather 1000 signatures in a day. One Saturday June 26 the Nader campaign held a convention in Portland at which 1100 attended.

Democrat infiltrators, responding to an email directive sent out by Chair of the Multnomah County Democratic Party, flooded the hall, preventing legitimate Nader supporters from entering, so that when state officials closed and locked the doors, assured that well over 1000 were present, the Democrats sat without objection while a majority voice vote nominated Nader for President in Oregon, but then proceeded to refuse to fill out and hand in papers validating their status as registered voters. This refusal to verify their voter status caused the Secretary of State to deny Nader ballot access, despite the fact that 950 voters present did ultimately verify their status and there is little doubt that at least 50 of the 150 to 200 Democrat infiltrators present who refused to verity their voter status were in fact registered Oregon voters.

While the Nader campaign attempted to gather the necessary signatures at a convention in April, it fell well short of the target. While Nader pulled 77,000 votes in the state in his 2000 Presidential run, only 750 turned out to the convention. (Gore carried Oregon in 2000 by only 6,765). [32]

In late June the Oregonian reported that Lee Coleman, a member of the Oregon State Republican Central Committee, said that a message left on his answering machine urging his support for the Nader ballot bid left a return number for the Bush-Cheney campaign office in Oregon.

Spokesman for the Bush campaign, Steve Schmidt, told the Oregonian that no paid campaign staffers were making calls to help Nader but said that some volunteers may have made calls from the campaign's office. "The campaign certainly understands that when Republican volunteers see that there are Democrat volunteers trying to restrict the choice and keep Ralph Nader off the ballot, that they should work to expand choice," Schmidt said. [33]

On July 1 CNN reported that a Washington D.C. group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) had filed a complaint to the Federal Election Commission about support by the Oregon branch of Citizens for a Sound Economy and the Oregon Family Council for the Nader 2004 campaign for President.[34] [35] The complaint argued that the use of phone banks to encourage conservatives to attend a Nader nominating convention was an illegal in-kind contribution to the Nader campaign. [36]

In a media release announcing its complaint CREW argued that while both CSE and OFC are non-profit groups, in law they are no different from corporations which are not allowed to contribute directly to political campaigns. "The costs of creating the scripts as well as the costs of the telephone calls constitute prohibited in-kind contributions. The Oregon Republican Party, which could not have legally made the telephone calls on its own, violated conspiracy laws by working with OFC on the phone bank. BC '04 improperly allowed so called "volunteers" to use BC '04 resources to assist Ralph Nader's campaign," CREW stated.

"Finally, if the Nader campaign knew about the scripts and the calls, then it violated FEC law by accepting those contributions. In any event Nader must reimburse the corporations for the costs of the phone banks," it argued. While CSE and OFC contributed its support as an 'in-kind' contribution rather than direct financial support, CREW argues that the distinction makes no difference.

The complaint was also directed at Bush's re-election campaign and the Oregon Republican Party, which CREW alleged were involved in the strategy of seeking to ensure that Nader appeared on the ballot in Oregon and thereby boosted Bush's prospects by splitting some liberal supporters support away from Kerry.

The day after the June 26 convention, CSE issued a media release to explain its support for Nader. "Oregon CSE members are working to get Ralph Nader on the November ballot! While this sounds completely backwards-- Ralph Nader opposes nearly every issue CSE fights for-- but there's sound logic behind Oregon CSE's actions. CSE does not advocate the election or defeat of political candidates, but Oregon CSE members feel that having Nader on the ballot helps illuminate the strong similarities between the uber-liberal Nader and John Kerry, CSE stated.

The phone script, in the name of Russ Walker the director of Citizens for a Sound Economy in Oregon explained to supporters that "we have to drive a wedge through the Liberal Left's base of support' by ensuring Nader obtained the requisite 1000 signatures. [37] [38]

The President of CSE, Matt Kibbe, told CNN sveral days later that "we called about 1,000 folks in the Portland area and said this would be an opportunity to show up to provide clarity in the presidential debate". Kibbe rejected suggestions that the calls were co-ordinated with either the Bush or Nader campaigns.

In a July 2 media statement CSE said "in Oregon last week, CSE organized a phone bank to about 1,000 members in the Portland area … and asked them to attend a weekend Nader event to qualify him for the ballot in Oregon". CSE described its activism as an "effort to broaden the debate-- and ballot access".

"CSE is undeterred by these attacks, and plans to continue the Nader issue strategy with its activists in key battleground states like Wisconsin, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere," it stated. [39]

The Wisconsin state director of CSE, Cameron Sholty, told the New York Times that when Nader's petition drive starts in August they will help. "We'll definitely be spreading the word that we'd like to see Nader on the ballot ... We'll do phone trees and friends-of-friends, and those Nader events will be a great way to drive our membership to get out to sign petitions for Nader," Sholty said. [40]

Nader's campaign has had assistance from Republican supporters in other states too. In Nevada - where Nader's campaign submitted the names of 11,0000 voters in mid-July to qualify for the ballot - Republican political consultant Steve Wark provided assistance. Wark, Associated Press reported, is also consulting to the election campaigns of U.S. Senate Republican aspirant, Richard Ziser, and the re-election campaign of state Republican Senator Ray Rawson. [41]

Funds for the ballot bid, solicited via Republican networks, were to be sent to Wark's address. "Please join me in this gallant effort to give our President the best chance possible of winning in November," a fundraising appeal by Republican Stu Richardson stated.

"I raised money from friends of mine who are nonpartisan … It wasn't all Republicans, just folks I do business with," Wark told AP.

Asked on CNN's Crossfire program whether he renounced support from CSE, Nader was emphatic. "I do renounce it," he said.

However, Nader adeptly moved on to talk about the issues he wanted to discuss rather than CSE. "First of all, I haven't seen any results. And, second of all, the only thing about that organization, it's against congressional pay raises. And we -- Congress raises their salary, but they freeze the minimum wage. Congress gives themselves great health insurance, but they make sure that people don't have health insurance," he said.

Faced with the ongoing controversy, Nader/Camejo supporters have defended his right to run in the election in order to present an alternative to the overlap between the major parties. The problem, the president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors Matt Gonzalez wrote in the San Francisco Examiner, is "simply that their running cannot be accommodated within our two-party system".

"So the answer, for many, is that they shouldn't run. But why make the solution an undemocratic one? Why not insist that the system be changed?," he argued. However, Gonzalez did not address the concern that Nader's campaign is reliant on conservative groups support to just get on the ballot.

Writing on Alternet, Jeff Cohen, acknowledeged that while Nader's 2000 campaign had been an inspiring challenge to the status quo he sees the current campaign differently. "Today, the sad reality on the ground is that a vote for Nader in these swing states is a vote for Bush's money, his organization, his rightwing activists," he wrote. [42]

At the July 2004 Democrat Convention, the Seattle Times reported that Toby Moffet from the Washington D.C. PR and corporate law firm and lobby shop, The Livingston Group was lobbying key Democrats to help United Progressives for Victory (UPV), an anti-Nader attack group. According to a memo from Moffet circulated to Democrats UPV would undertake market research, community organizing, media outreach and Internet marketing to undermine support for Nader. [43]

According to Moffet, opinion polling of potential Nader supporters falls when told "he is in bed with Republicans". Support provided by conservative groups - such as Citizens for a Sound Economy - to help get Nader onto the ballot, may well prove to be the final undoing of his campaign. [44]

The Nader campaign has responded by pointing out that Republican gestures at helping Nader, if they were truly more than empty gestures actually aimed at crowding Nader's anti-Bush message out of the media and discrediting his campaign, would have easily won him ballot access in all 50 states by now, as they easily did in Michigan where it served Republican purposes to torpedo his Reform Party ballot line in favor of an Independent line. The Nader campaign has also pointed out that the only one in bed with corporate Republicans and foes of progressive causes is Toby Moffet himself, having been a Vice President for Monsanto Corporation, one of the world's leading multinational corporations in the promotion of genetically modified crops which has successfully sued organic farmers for patent violations when genetically modified crops invaded and cross-pollinated with the organic farmers' crops, and now holding a high position in a corporate law and lobby firm founded by former Republican Congressman Robert Livingston, who in 1999 was to succeed Newt Gingrich as Speaker of the House when he abruptly resigned, admitting an extra-marital affair. The Livingston Group has represented major military-industrial mega-corporations Raytheon and Northrop Grumman, as well as foreign governments like the Cayman Islands. [45] [46][47]

Despite the corrupt political cynicism displayed by both major parties in their corporate-funded media and legal battles, Nader persists in his call on citizens to become active in politics and think upon politics with a positive attitude. At the Reform Party convention, Nader discussed the Populist Movement and how farmers got into the political arena and taught themselves the complexities of international economics and different proposals for how to reorganize the U.S. monetary system to make it fair to people and no longer rigged against the People by the big banks and railroads, how they risked everything to stand up for their rights and for democracy. He said his campaign would be victorious if it sparked a simiilar movement of ordinary citizens for political and economic reform against the big corporations in our time, and if young people are drawn into politics by his campaign because, he said: "If you're not into politics, then you should read a little history my friend, because politics will be into you in a big way. But politics should never be considered a dirty word, which reflects the state of our politics. Because in ancient Athens, politics was the word to counteract autocracy. Politics meant the people governing themselves against autocratic regimes." [48]
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Fri Aug 07, 2015 12:49 am



Could Nader Win?

Furthermore, Nader's impact could be far greater than that of a potential spoiler for Kerry. The 2000 National Election Survey data show that only 9 percent of voters who preferred Nader actually voted for him. Fifty percent of Nader supporters didn't vote at all. Twenty-six percent of Nader supporters voted for Gore as the lesser evil to Bush. And 19 percent of Nader supporters voted for Bush as the lesser evil to Gore.

If all the voters who preferred Nader had voted for him in 2000, he would have won the election, receiving 54 million votes to Bush's 43 million and Gore's 38 million (if we add the Nader supporters who voted for their lesser evil to Nader's total and subtract them from Bush and Gore's totals). (These numbers are derived from Harvard political scientist Barry Burden's 2001 study of the National Election Survey data: "Minor Parties in the 2000 Presidential Election," see ... ce/burdosu. pdf.)

In 2004, with antiwar sentiment rising and Nader the only antiwar candidate, Nader could well rise into serious contention. It would be a tragedy if the Greens were on the sidelines in such a race supporting another candidate. But whether or not that scenario unfolds, the role of the Green Party should be mobilizing that latent majority who prefer Nader/Green policies, not running an unknown candidate because we fear spoiling the election for Kerry and the Democrats who oppose almost everything the Greens stand for. A strong vote for Nader will be a victory because it will help set the national political agenda just as Perot's 19 percent showing in 1992 compelled both major parties to rush to balance the federal budget.

David Cobb has run a good, energetic primary campaign, with visits to a majority of the states, a great Web site, and lots of local media coverage. He has listened to Greens and adapted his message accordingly, now emphasizing the party-building role his campaign could play over his original safe-states strategy, which itself has been nuanced to accommodate the needs of each state, for example, agreeing to run hard in the battleground state of Iowa because the Green ballot line there depends on the presidential election result.

-- Independent Politics: The Green Party Strategy Debate, by Howard Hawkins
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Sun Aug 09, 2015 8:14 am


Gary Sellers, 71; Onetime Ally of Ralph Nader
By Matt Schudel
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, March 24, 2007



Gary Sellers, 71, the first lawyer hired by Ralph Nader's organization in the 1960s who went on to form a group opposing Nader's run for the presidency in 2000, died March 13 in a single-car accident on Route 211 in Rappahannock County, near the Fauquier County line.

Mr. Sellers was returning to his home in Lake Barcroft from a cherry orchard he owned near Flint Hill, Va., when his sport-utility vehicle flipped over a guardrail and crashed down an embankment.

In 1968, he joined Nader's nascent movement, becoming one of the first of Nader's Raiders, an influential group of young idealists who sought governmental reform in consumer protection, labor laws and social justice. The two grew close in the five years they worked together, and Nader was Mr. Sellers's best man at his first wedding.

Mr. Sellers later spent 15 years on Capitol Hill as a congressional aide and played a major role in drafting the landmark Occupational Safety and Health Act and laws protecting coal miners. After retiring in the late 1980s, he volunteered with the American Civil Liberties Union on legislative issues.

In recent years, he was content to tend his cherry orchards, first in West Virginia and later in Rappahannock, until he was spurred back into political action by Nader's candidacy as the Green Party nominee in 2000.

Mr. Sellers saw that Nader could take enough votes from Democratic candidate Al Gore to tip the election in favor of George W. Bush. With several other former Nader proteges, Mr. Sellers organized Nader's Raiders for Gore and accused his former mentor of breaking a promise not to campaign in battleground states where he could affect the outcome of the national election.

"I love the man," Mr. Sellers said in October 2000. "He's a marvelous person. He was the best man at my wedding. But he is not keeping his pledges. . . . And we want him to drop out in those states where he'd make a difference."

In an open letter to Nader, Mr. Sellers and other members of his group wrote: "It is now clear that you might well give the White House to Bush. As a result, you would set back significantly the social progress to which you have devoted your entire, astonishing career. . . . It would be a cruel irony indeed if your major legacy were to erase the victory from the candidate who most embodies your philosophy, Al Gore."

Nader responded by saying: "All these good people who have succumbed to the lesser-of-two-evils syndrome are setting themselves up for another cycle of political betrayal."

Mr. Sellers made his case on network news programs and debated one of Nader's most vocal supporters, talk-show host Phil Donahue, on NBC's "Today" show.

"The consequences are really profound," Mr. Sellers said on "Today." "It will take 30 years to undo the harm that Ralph is going to do in the next 12 days."

Nader garnered about 3 percent of the national vote, including more than 97,000 votes in Florida. Bush won the disputed election when recounts determined that he carried Florida by 537 votes. Nader's presence on the ballot also appeared to secure narrow Bush victories in New Hampshire and Oregon.

After the election, Mr. Sellers said of Nader: "He has alienated his closest friends. And he's done it with a clear understanding of the consequences." He and Nader never spoke again.

Mr. Sellers was born in Detroit and graduated from the University of Michigan and its law school. He came to Washington in 1965 to work in the Office of Management and Budget in the Johnson White House.

He joined Nader as his first general counsel in 1968, working with him for five years, when Nader's influence as a public watchdog was at its height. Mr. Sellers later worked for three Democratic U.S. representatives from the same California family -- Phillip Burton; his widow, Sala Burton; and his brother, John Lowell Burton -- and the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Inspired by boyhood memories of his grandparents' farm in Michigan, Mr. Sellers operated an orchard for several years in West Virginia before opening the Cherries on Top orchard near Flint Hill in the early 1990s. It became a popular mountaintop destination where people were invited to pick their own fruit.

Mr. Sellers was a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington and had a second home in St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands.

His marriage to Dorothy Sellers ended in divorce.

Survivors include his wife of 18 years, Sara-Ann "Sally" Determan of Lake Barcroft; two stepsons, Dann Determan of Falls Church and David Determan of Spotsylvania County; a brother; and four grandchildren.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

Postby admin » Sat Sep 12, 2015 4:34 am

James Carville
by Wikipedia



James Carville
Born Chester James Carville, Jr.[1]
October 25, 1944 (age 70)
Carville, Louisiana, U.S.
Residence New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
Nationality American
Other names the Ragin' Cajun
Alma mater Louisiana State University (B.A., J.D.)
Occupation Political consultant,
Political science professor of practice, Tulane University[2]
Political party Democratic
Religion Catholic[3]
Spouse(s) Mary Matalin (m. 1993)

Chester James Carville, Jr. (born October 25, 1944) is an American political commentator and media personality who is a prominent figure in the Democratic Party. Carville gained national attention for his work as the lead strategist of the successful presidential campaign of then-Arkansas governor Bill Clinton.[4] Carville was a co-host of CNN's Crossfire until its final broadcast in June 2005. Since its cancellation, he has appeared on CNN's news program The Situation Room. As of 2009, he hosts a weekly program on XM Radio titled 60/20 Sports with Luke Russert, son of Tim Russert who hosted NBC's Meet The Press. He is married to Republican political consultant Mary Matalin. In 2009, he began teaching political science at Tulane University.[5]

In 2014, Carville joined Fox News Channel as a contributor.[6]

Early life and education

Carville, the oldest of eight children, was born in Carville, Louisiana on October 25, 1944,[7] the son of Lucille (née Normand), a former school teacher who sold World Book Encyclopedias door-to-door, and Chester James Carville, a postmaster as well as owner of a general store.[8][9][10] The town of Carville was named after his paternal grandfather, Louis Arthur Carville, the postmaster.[11] Carville attended Ascension Catholic High School in Donaldsonville, Louisiana.[9]

He received his undergraduate and Juris Doctor degrees from Louisiana State University. During his undergraduate years at LSU, Carville was a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity.[12] He served for two years in the United States Marine Corps.[13]


Early Career

Before entering politics, Carville worked as a litigator at a Baton Rouge law firm from 1973 to 1979. Carville spent two years serving in the United States Marines, achieving the rank of Corporal,[14] and later worked as a high school teacher.

Carville was trained in consulting by Gus Weill, who in 1958 had opened the first advertising firm which specialized in political campaigns in the state capital in Baton Rouge.[15]

Prior to the Clinton campaign, Carville and consulting partner Paul Begala gained other well-known political victories, including the gubernatorial triumphs of Robert Casey of Pennsylvania in 1986, and Zell Miller of Georgia in 1990. But it was in 1991 when Carville and Begala rose to national attention, leading appointed incumbent Senator Harris Wofford of Pennsylvania back from a 40-point poll deficit over White House hand-picked candidate Dick Thornburgh. It was during Wofford's campaign that the "it's the economy, stupid" strategy used by Bill Clinton in 1992 was first implemented.

Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign

In 1992, Carville helped lead Bill Clinton to a win against George H. W. Bush in the presidential election. In 1993, Carville was honored as Campaign District Manager of the Year by the American Association of Political Consultants. His role in the Clinton campaign was documented in the feature-length Academy Award-nominated film The War Room.

One of the formulations he used in that campaign has entered common usage, derived from a list he posted in the war room to help focus himself and his staff, with these three points:

1. Change vs. more of the same.
2. The economy, stupid.
3. Don't forget health care.[16]

Political and media work

After 1992 Carville stopped working on domestic campaigns, stating that he would bring unneeded publicity. He then worked on a number of foreign campaigns, including those of Tony Blair – then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom – during the 2001 general election; Ehud Barak of Israel's Labor Party (at the suggestion of Clinton, who had grown frustrated with Benjamin Netanyahu's intransigence in the peace process) in the 1999 Knesset election; and the Liberal Party of Canada. In 2002, Carville helped Bolivian Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada win the presidency in Bolivia, while worked as a Greenberg Carville Shrum (GCS) strategist. This was portrayed in the documentary Our Brand Is Crisis.

In 2004, he was brought in for last-minute consulting on Senator John Kerry's Presidential campaign, but he did not play a major role.

In 2005, Carville taught a semester of the course "Topics in American Politics" at Northern Virginia Community College. Among the guests he had come speak to the class were Al Hunt, Mark Halperin, Senator George Allen, George Stephanopoulos, Karl Strubel, Stan Greenberg, Tony Blankley, representatives from the Motion Picture Association of America, and James Fallows.

In 2006, Carville switched gears from politics to sports and became a host on a sports show called 60/20 Sports on XM Satellite Radio with Luke Russert, son of NBC journalist Tim Russert. The show is an in-depth look at the culture of sports based on the ages of the two hosts (60 and 20).

After the Democrats' victory in the 2006 midterm election, Carville criticized Howard Dean as Democratic National Committee Chair, calling for his ouster, as he believed Dean had not spent enough money. In late November 2006, Carville proposed a truce of sorts.[17]

Carville is the executive producer of the 2006 film All the King's Men, starring Sean Penn and Anthony Hopkins, which is loosely based on the life of Louisiana Governor Huey Long.

Carville had believed that Al Gore, whom he helped put in the White House as vice president in 1992, would run for president in 2008.[18] This prediction did not come true.

On March 4, 2009, Politico reported that Carville, Paul Begala, and Rahm Emanuel were the architects of the Democratic Party's strategy to cast conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh as the face of the Republican Party.[19] Carville was particularly critical of Limbaugh for saying he wanted Barack Obama to "fail."

Afghan presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani hired Carville as a campaign advisor in July 2009. Carville said that the 2009 Afghan presidential election is "probably the most important election held in the world in a long time," and he called his new job "probably the most interesting project I have ever worked in my life."[20] Carville, who works for Ghani pro bono, when asked about similarities between politics in Afghanistan and politics in Louisiana, responded: "Yeah, I felt a little bit at home, to be honest with you."[21]

In 2010, Carville worked as senior advisor for the campaign of Colombian presidential candidate Juan Manuel Santos.[22]

He is acting as advisor for Daniel Scioli (Governor of Buenos Aires) re-election campaign.

He is a regular contributor with Stan Greenberg to the weekly Carville-Greenberg Memo at The National Memo.

Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential primary campaign

As an advisor to Hillary Rodham Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign, Carville told The New York Times on March 22, 2008, that New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, who had just endorsed Senator Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination, was comparable to Judas Iscariot. It was "an act of betrayal," said Carville. "Mr. Richardson’s endorsement came right around the anniversary of the day when Judas sold out for 30 pieces of silver, so I think the timing is appropriate, if ironic,” Mr. Carville said, referring to Holy Week. Governor Richardson had served in President Bill Clinton's administration as both United States Ambassador to the United Nations and Secretary of Energy, and Carville believed that Richardson owed an endorsement to Senator Clinton in exchange for being offered those posts by her husband. Carville also claimed that Richardson assured many in the Clinton campaign that he would at least remain neutral and abstain from taking sides.[23] Richardson refuted Carville's account, arguing that he had not made any promises to remain neutral. Richardson claims that his decision to endorse Obama was "clinched" by his speech on race relations following the swirl of controversy surrounding Obama's former pastor Jeremiah Wright.[24] Carville went on to note,"I doubt if Governor Richardson and I will be terribly close in the future," Carville said,[25] but "I've had my say...I got one in the wheelhouse and I tagged it."

Even as Clinton's campaign began to lose steam, Carville remained both loyal and positive in his public positions, rarely veering off message and stoutly defending the candidate. But on May 13, 2008, a few hours before the primary in West Virginia, Carville remarked to an audience at Furman University in South Carolina, "I'm for Senator Clinton, but I think the great likelihood is that Obama will be the nominee."[26] The moment marked a shift from his previous and often determinedly optimistic comments about the state of Clinton's campaign.

After Barack Obama's clear lead for victory in the Democratic presidential campaign on June 3, James Carville said he was ready to open up his wallet to help Obama build a political war chest to take on John McCain in November.[27]



All's Fair: Love, War and Running for President (1995), with Mary Matalin and Peter Knobler
We're Right, They're Wrong: A Handbook for Spirited Progressives (1996)
...And The Horse He Rode In On: The People vs. Kenneth Starr (1998)
Stickin: The Case for Loyalty (2000) with Paul Begala
Suck Up, Buck Up... and Come Back When You Foul Up (2001)
Had Enough? (2004)
Take It Back: Our Party, Our Country, Our Future (2006) with Paul Begala
40 More Years: How the Democrats Will Rule the Next Generation (2009)
It’s the Middle Class, Stupid! (2012) with Stan Greenburg
Love & War: Twenty Years, Three Presidents, Two Daughters and One Louisiana Home, (2014) with Mary Matalin

Children's Fiction

Lu and the Swamp Ghost (2004) with co-author Patricia McKissack and illustrator David Catrow

Personal life

Carville is married to Republican political consultant Mary Matalin, who had worked for President George H. W. Bush on his 1992 reelection campaign. Carville and Matalin were married in New Orleans in October 1993. They have two daughters: Matalin Mary "Matty" Carville and Emerson Normand "Emma" Carville.
In 2008, Carville and Matalin relocated their family from Virginia to New Orleans.[28] He is currently on the faculty of the department of political science at Tulane University.

Film and television appearances

Carville and Keith Ellison in 2007
Carville takes a lead role in The War Room, a documentary about Bill Clinton's 1992 presidential campaign, together with George Stephanopoulos.
He appeared in the 1996 film The People vs. Larry Flynt as attorney Simon Leis.[29]
He appeared in three episodes of the sitcom Mad About You playing himself, as head of a political consulting firm that hires Jamie Buchman, played by Helen Hunt.
He has a guest role on the sitcom Spin City, where he is interviewed for a job as campaign manager.
In the films Old School and Wedding Crashers, Carville makes cameo appearances as himself.
He appeared as himself in Our Brand Is Crisis, a documentary about the Bolivian presidential election.
Carville appears as the Governor of Missouri, Thomas Crittenden, in the 2007 movie The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.
He appeared as himself in NBC's comedy 30 Rock, season 2 episode 8 "Secrets and Lies".
He appeared in cartoon form in the Family Guy episode "Running Mates."
He starred in Steven Soderbergh's HBO series K Street along with his wife.
Carville is a regular guest on The Tony Kornheiser Show where he picks both NFL and college football games against the USA Today spreads.
He voiced Judge Roland McFarlane in the King of the Hill episode "Jumpin' Crack Bass".
He made a cameo appearance in The Muppets.
He made a notable appearance on Good Morning America to condemn Barack Obama's response to the oil spill where he claimed that 'We're About to Die Down Here!'[30]
Beginning in 2012, Carville and Matalin appeared in "Cocktail Party" commercials for Maker's Mark Kentucky Straight Bourbon.
Carville appears as himself in the film G.I. Joe: Retaliation, introducing the President at a fundraising event.
He is portrayed on Saturday Night Live by Bill Hader.
He and his wife perform the epilogue to Hayes Carll's political comedy song "Another Like You"[31]


1. "James Carville Deposition section 3". 1991-12-01. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
2. "James Carville Joins Faculty". Tulane University. 2008-11-11. Retrieved 2010-02-10.
3. "Will Romney's appeal to the Catholic vote pay off?". CNN. 2012-08-23.
4. "David Axelrod calls Newt Gingrich 'the godfather of gridlock'". PolitiFact. Retrieved 2012-09-05.
5. Hobgood, Kathryn (2008-11-18). "Political Pundit Joins Faculty". New Orleans, LA: Tulane University. Retrieved 2009-01-29.
6. "James Carville joining Fox News as contributor". New York, NY: FOX News Network, LLC. 2014-02-06. Retrieved 2014-06-14.
7. "CNN TV – Anchors/Reporters:James Carville".
8. The Columnists. Salon.
9. ^Carville, James; Mary Matalin; Federal News Service (transcript) (2007-03-27). CEA Washington Forum (.doc). Washington, D.C.: Consumer Electronics Association. Retrieved 2008-04-01.
10. "James Carville has returned to Louisiana, living and teaching in New Orleans". News Library. May 17, 2009. Retrieved 5 September 2012.
11. Carville: Remembering Leprosy In America – Marcia G. Gaudet – Google Books. Retrieved 2012-09-05.
12. Gumbo. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University. 1963. pp. 236–7.
13. "10 People You Didn't Know Were U.S. Marines | U.S. Naval Institute". Retrieved 2012-09-05.
14. "CNN Political Ticker: All politics, all the time Blog Archive - Carville bumps into BP CEO « - Blogs from". 2010-06-02. Retrieved 2010-07-04.
15. "About Gus Weill". Retrieved August 21, 2012.
16. THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: The Democrats – Clinton and Bush Compete to Be Champion of Change; Democrat Fights Perceptions of Bush Gain; Oct. 31, 1992, New York Times [1]
17. Hotline On Call: Carville's Truce? The Hotline. National Journal Group. 2006-11-30.
18. James Carville: Al Gore Will Run in 2008. 2007-02-27.
19. Martin, Jonathan (March 4, 2009). "Rush Job: Inside Dems' Limbaugh Plan". Politico. Retrieved 2009-03-12.
20. "U.S. strategist helps rival of Afghan president". Associated Press. 2009-07-08. Retrieved 2009-07-14.[dead link] Cf. "Carville to Advise Karzai Challenger in Afghan Election Contest". Bloomberg. 2009-07-06. Retrieved 2009-07-14.
21. Bruce Eggler & Michelle Krupa, "Carville finds familiar politics in Afghanistan" (section titled "Going native") in Times-Picayune, 2009 August 1, Saint Tammany Edition, p. B3.
22. "Juan Manuel Santos' campaign is running at full speed, La Silla Vacía (Colombian Political Website in Spanish)".
23. Adam Nagourney and Jeff Zeleny, "First a Tense Talk With Clinton, Then Richardson Backs Obama", The New York Times, March 22, 2008.
24. "Richardson: Obama's speech was decisive". CNN. 2008-03-22. Retrieved 2010-05-05.
25. Sinderbrand, Rebecca (2008-03-25). "Carville: Controversial Judas comment 'had the desired effect'". CNN Political Ticker ( Retrieved 2008-04-01.
26. "Carville: Obama likely to win nomination". CNN. 2008-05-13. Retrieved 2010-05-05.
27. "Obama for America". Retrieved 2010-07-04.
28. Argetsinger, Amy; Roxanne Roberts (2008-03-27). "His Family Is Following the Ragin' Cajun Home". The Reliable Source (The Washington Post). pp. C03. Retrieved 2008-04-01.[dead link]
29. "The People vs. Larry Flynt (1996)". International Movie Database (IMDb). Retrieved 5 September 2012.
30. "James Carville Slams Obama on Oil Spill: 'We're About to Die Down Here!' Stephanopoulos spins". YouTube. Retrieved 2012-09-05.
31. "Hayes Carll - Another Like You ft. Cary Ann Hearst". YouTube. Retrieved 2015-04-27.
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Re: AN unREASONABLE MAN, directed by Henriette Mantel

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Eric Alterman
by Wikipedia




Eric Alterman (b. January 14, 1960[2]) is an American historian, journalist, author, media critic, blogger, and educator. He is currently CUNY Distinguished Professor of English and Journalism at Brooklyn College, the media columnist for The Nation and a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, as well as the author of ten books. His weblog named Altercation was originally hosted by from 2002 until 2006, moved to Media Matters for America until December 2008, and is now hosted by The Nation. He writes from a primarily liberal viewpoint.

The Nation magazine, where Mr. Alterman writes, is owned by Katrina vanden Heuvel, daughter of William J. vanden Heuvel, the onetime executive assistant to the founder of the CIA, William Joseph Donovan. Vanden Heuvel later became a board member of the Farfield Foundation, billed as a "philanthropic foundation," in fact a CIA front organization.

Farfield Foundation
by SourceWatch:

The Farfield Foundation, a now defunct CIA front, acted as a philanthropic foundation. The CIA used it as a vehicle for their covert funding of groups and persons that were believed to be effective weapons in a culture war against the Soviet Union during the Cold War.

CIA's Direction of Cultural Warfare

CIA employee Tom Braden, who had been the MoMA's managing director from 1947 to 1949 before he began working for the CIA, was initially in charge of the CIA section that oversaw the culture cold war. The section was called the International Organisations Division (IOD). The IOD indirectly, via their fronts and agreeable Foundations, funded prestigious journals, organized conferences, music competitions and art exhibitions.

The rationale behind this covert philanthropy was that American avant-garde culture that was both leftist and anti-communist could be an effective foil against Stalinist Communism's rise in Western Europe, post World War II. It was not just the CIA that directed the flow of money, it was also some very influential and wealthy Americans with names that included Rockefeller, Ford, and Dodge.
Although they were not CIA fronts, many other foundations have been implicated as having received CIA monies.

The primary beneficiary of the Farfield Foundation's philanthropy was another CIA front, the Congress for Cultural Freedom, and its US Chapter, the American Committee for Cultural Freedom, which in turn funded groups and individuals through themselves. Even early neoconservative thinkers received funding from covert CIA sources for journals and freelance authorship.

The need for secrecy was as much for domestic reasons as foreign. The McCarthy-era federal politicians distrusted modern culture and viewed it as destructive of American Ideals; it is highly unlikely that Norman Rockwell paintings and evangelical-styled Christian missionaries would have been successful in holding Communism's cultural allure at bay in Post-WWII Western Europe.

What's wrong with the CIA covertly funding the export of American Expressionism? It is a true art form. It is a product of America that many have felt an affinity to. Artists have usually required patrons supporting both their physical sustenance, and their psychological well being in a positive recognition of their creative worth. Historically, artists' sponsorship has often been government or religious officials. Communism's spread was viewed as a positive force, or in muted fatalism, an inevitability, amongst many of Western Europe's Post WWII cultural elite. The unbridled individualism of expressionism offered an effective contrast, as well as viable alternative to the stark bleakness of Soviet Realism's portrayal of grayscaled existence within the Stalinist sphere of influence. The Soviet Government had their own arsenal of covert actions too. It would be a great stretch of logic to view the funding of musicians who were virtuosi of Jazz's improvisational spontaneity in the 50's on working trips to Europe as the acts of an evil empire. There is an aura of comical irony swirling about an effective usage of the frequently apolitical lords of American Abstract Art and the drop out Icons of the Beat Generation as the USA's secret Cold War arsenal in cultural warfare. Both American politicians and their Soviet analogs viewed them as part of an American degeneracy that was infecting their country, and causing a decline in domestic morality. Soviet politicians perceived it as an effect of capitalism's excesses, while American politicians viewed it as a creeping red menace.

What is condemnable isn't the act of funding artists in an ideological cultural war, it is the unseen hands of manipulative elitists, who believe they are acting for the greater common good, secretly affecting the World's societies. The overuse of and dependence upon a methodology of opaque actions, and an unyielding faith in the propriety of the use of stealth within an open democratic society is where the malevolence lies. The same mechanisms used for covertly funding and secretly manipulating culture to fight communism were also used to covertly aid undemocratic-but-anti-communist regimes around the world. Instead of just listening to Coltrane, Byrd, Gillespie or Brubeck, while contemplating the artworks of Motherwell, Pollock, Rothko or Kline; reflect also upon "Papa Doc" and "Baby Doc" Duvalier of Haiti, Anastasios Somoza of Nicuragua, Augusto Pinochet of Chile, General Suharto of Indonesia, Hugo Banzer of Bolivia, Jonas Savimbi of South Africa, Lon Nol of Cambodia, Manuel Noriega of Panama, Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire, Raoul Cedras of the Raboteau massacre, Reza Shah Pahlavi of Iran, Roberto D'Aubuisson of El Salvador, and do not forget Saddam Hussein. Secrecy surrounding government's foreign policy is all too often used to obfuscate foreign policy that is a destructive force on the receiving end. The target country's citizenry ends up taking the brunt of the force, and the seeds of their democratic will are sown into the wind. Covert action is also used to hide governmental practices that would be viewed negatively by the majority of American citizens if it were not kept secret. It ends up being an antidemocratic government action, ostensibly engaged upon for protecting and expanding liberty and democracy world-wide. This hypocrisy causes the onset of anti-Americanism, leads to blowback, as well as being a primary cause for the disbelieving naiveté Americans often express when confronted with the storm of antagonism resultant from the hidden actions, having awakened just in time to reap its whirlwind.

CIA Funded Foundations
(abridged list alphabetized by first letter in name)

Aaron E. Norman Fund, Inc.
American Society of African Culture
Appalachian Fund
Asia Foundation
Beacon Fund
Borden Trust
Catherwood Foundation
Cleveland H. Dodge Foundation
Committee of Correspondence
Congress for Cultural Freedom
David, Josephine and Winfield Baird Foundation, Inc.
Edsel Fund
Edward John Noble Foundation
Farfield Foundation
Ford Foundation

Foundation for Youth and Student Affairs of New York City
Free Europe Committee
Independence Foundation
Independent Research Service
International Development Foundation
J. Frederick Brown Foundation
J.M. Kaplan Fund, Inc.
Kentfield Fund
Lucius N. Littauer Foundation
Museum of Modern Art
Operations and Policy Research Incorporated
Price Fund
Rockefeller Foundation
Rubicon Foundation
San Jacinto Foundation
Sidney and Esther Rabb Charitable Foundation of Boston
Tower Fund
W. Alton Jones Foundation
William Benton Foundation

"The Nation magazine," by Kurt Nimmo


He earned a BA in history and government from Cornell University, an MA in international relations from Yale University, and a PhD in U.S. history from Stanford University.[3]



Alterman began his journalism career in 1983, freelancing originally for The Nation, The Washington Monthly, The New Republic, Harper's, Le Monde diplomatique, and later, Vanity Fair, The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker and The Atlantic Monthly, among others, while working as a senior fellow for the World Policy Institute in New York City and Washington, DC. Shortly after that he became the Washington Correspondent for Mother Jones, and soon thereafter Rolling Stone, before returning to The Nation as a columnist in 1995. Alterman has also been a contributing editor to ELLE, and a regular columnist for Worth and the London Sunday Express.[citation needed] and the Guardian.


Alterman was hired by MSNBC in 1996, both appearing as a commentator on the cable channel and writing a column posted on its website. In 2002 MSNBC engaged him to create the blog daily Altercation, one of the first blogs hosted by a mainstream media news organization.[4] In September 2006, after a ten-year association, Alterman and MSNBC parted ways. Media Matters for America hired him as a Senior Fellow and agreed to host Altercation, effective September 18, 2006. Regular contributors to his blog Altercation included sportswriter Charlie Pierce and historian and military officer Robert Bateman. On December 22, 2008 Alterman announced that Altercation would be moving to The Nation's website in 2009, and would appear on a less regular basis than its previous Monday through Friday schedule.[5]> He has also worked as a history consultant to HBO Films.


He published his first book, Sound & Fury: The Making of the Punditocracy, which won the 1992 George Orwell Award, while studying for his doctorate in US history in Stanford in 1992. Alterman also published a number of other books, including the national best-sellers What Liberal Media? The Truth About Bias and the News (2003, 2004), and The Book on Bush: How George W. (Mis)leads America (2004). The others include: Who Speaks for America? Why Democracy Matters in Foreign Policy, (1998), and a second edition of Sound & Fury (2000). His It Ain't No Sin to be Glad You're Alive: The Promise of Bruce Springsteen (1999, 2001), won the 1999 Stephen Crane Literary Award. In September 2004, Viking Press published When presidents Lie: A History of Official Deception and its Consequences –- a version of his doctoral dissertation –– on lies of major consequence told by presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush.

His seventh book, published in 2008 by Viking was called Why We're Liberals: A Political Handbook for Post-Bush America.[6] Also in 2008, Alterman published a lengthy essay in the New Yorker on the decline of American newspapers and the future role of new media news sites.[7] His eighth book, Kabuki Democracy: The System vs. Barack Obama,[8] was published in early 2011. It was an extension of a lengthy article he had published in the Summer of 2010 in The Nation. In 2012, Alterman published his ninth book, The Cause: The Fight for American Liberalism from Franklin Roosevelt to Barack Obama, a history of postwar American liberalism. Three years later, in 2015, he published his tenth book the ebook and paperback on demand, Inequality in One City: Bill de Blasio and the New York Experiment.

Media criticism

He is perhaps best known for his media criticism, which is the subject of two of his books. He writes a political column for The Nation and a weekly column for the Center for American Progress website. In contrast to conservative media commentators, Alterman argues that the press is biased against liberals rather than biased in their favor. He was called "the most honest and incisive media critic writing today" in the National Catholic Reporter, and the author of "the smartest and funniest political journal out there," in The San Francisco Chronicle. In 2008, Alterman also became a regular columnist to the Jewish magazine Moment, where he wrote regularly about Jewish issues. In 2009, he also became a regular contributor to The Daily Beast.[9] In 2011, he gave up the column on Jewish issues Moment and began a new one in The (Jewish) Forward.

Alterman has taught journalism at both New York University and Columbia University. Since the fall of 2004, he has been a Professor of English at Brooklyn College, where he teaches courses in media and media history.[10] In 2007 he was named a CUNY Distinguished Professor of English at Brooklyn College and Professor of Journalism at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.[11] He is also a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress,[12] and remains one at the World Policy Institute in New York.[13]

The Center for American Progress (CAP) is a progressive public policy research and advocacy organization.[2] According to CAP, the center is "dedicated to improving the lives of Americans through progressive ideas and action."[2] The Center presents a liberal[3] viewpoint on economic issues. It has its headquarters in Washington, D.C.[4]

The president and chief executive officer of CAP is Neera Tanden, who worked for the Obama and Clinton administrations and for Hillary Clinton’s campaigns.[5] The first president and CEO was John Podesta, who served as chief of staff to then U.S. President Bill Clinton. Podesta remained with the organization as chairman of the board until he joined the Obama White House staff in December 2013. Tom Daschle is the current chairman.

The Center for American Progress runs a campus outreach group, Generation Progress, and a sister advocacy organization, the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Citing Podesta's influence in the formation of the Obama Administration, a November 2008 article in Time stated that "not since the Heritage Foundation helped guide Ronald Reagan's transition in 1981 has a single outside group held so much sway".[6]

History and mission

The Center for American Progress was created in 2003 as a left-leaning alternative to think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute.[7]

Since its inception, the center has assembled a group of high-profile senior fellows, including Lawrence Korb, Assistant Secretary of Defense under President Ronald Reagan; Gene Sperling, Director of the National Economic Council under Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama; Ruy Teixeira, political scientist and author of The Emerging Democratic Majority; and, most recently, former Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle and Elizabeth Edwards, late wife of former presidential candidate and former U.S. Senator from North Carolina John Edwards. Sarah Rosen Wartell, a co-founder and executive vice-president of the center, has been named President of the Urban Institute[8]

The center was often featured prominently on the Al Franken Show on the now defunct Air America Radio network, where Christy Harvey and Al Franken criticized the Bush administration at length, accusing it of dishonesty and incompetence.

The center helped Congressman John Murtha (D-PA) develop "strategic redeployment",[9] a comprehensive plan for the Iraq War that included a timetable and troop withdrawals.



ThinkProgress is a blog edited by Judd Legum that "provide[s] a forum that advances progressive ideas and policies."[10] It is an outlet of the Center for American Progress.

ThinkProgress includes a climate-focused section titled Climate Progress.[11] Edited by Joseph J. Romm, the blog discusses climate science, climate and energy technology solutions and political news related to climate change. Climate Progress is a project of the Center for American Progress Action Fund. In 2008, Time magazine named Climate Progress one of the "Top 15 Green Websites", writing that it "counters bad science and inane rhetoric with original analysis delivered sharply...Romm occupies the intersection of climate science, economics and policy....On his blog and in his most recent book, Hell and High Water, you can find some of the most cogent, memorable, and deployable arguments for immediate and overwhelming action to confront global warming".[12]

In 2009, Thomas L. Friedman called ClimateProgress "indispensable",[13] and Rolling Stone magazine named Romm to its list of "100 People Who Are Changing America".[14] Time magazine named Romm one of its "Heroes of the Environment (2009)", calling him "The Web's most influential climate-change blogger"[15] and, in 2010, it included Climate Progress in a list of the 25 "Best Blogs of 2010"[16] Romm's 2010 book, Straight Up, is a compilation of some of his best blog entries from Climate Progress, with introductions and analysis by Romm.

Generation Progress

Generation Progress was launched in February 2005 and is CAP's youth outreach arm. Generation Progress is active on over 500 U.S. campuses and in communities across the United States.

Center for American Progress Action Fund

Formerly known simply as the American Progress Action Fund, the Center for American Progress Action Fund is a "sister advocacy organization" and is organizationally and financially separate from CAP, although they share many staff and a physical address. Politico wrote in April 2011 that it "openly runs political advocacy campaigns, and plays a central role in the Democratic Party’s infrastructure, and the new reporting staff down the hall isn’t exactly walled off from that message machine, nor does it necessarily keep its distance from liberal groups organizing advocacy campaigns targeting conservatives”.[17] Whereas CAP is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the fund is a 501(c)(4), allowing it to devote more funds to lobbying.[18] In 2003, George Soros promised to financially support the organization by donating up to $3 million.[19] The action fund is headed by Jennifer Palmieri.[17]


Some open government groups, such as the Sunlight Foundation and the Campaign Legal Center, criticize the Center's failure to disclose its contributors, particularly since it is so influential in appointments to the Obama administration.[20][21]

In March 2008, ThinkProgress, CAP's blog outlet, posted that John McCain had plagiarized from a 1996 speech by Rear Admiral Timothy Ziemer. However, it was revealed that McCain had used similar lines in a speech during 1995 and ThinkProgress retracted the error the next day.[22][23][24]

In October 2010, ThinkProgress posted that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was bypassing campaign finance laws by using foreign money to fund campaign attack ads.[25] called it "a claim with little basis in fact",[26] while the New York Times wrote, "[T]here is little evidence that what the chamber does in collecting overseas dues is improper or even unusual, according to both liberal and conservative election-law lawyers and campaign finance documents".[27]

CAP was criticized by several Jewish organizations after some employees "publicly used language that could be construed as anti-Israel or even anti-Semitic".[28] Bloggers associated with CAP published several posts using phrases such as "apartheid" and "Israel-firsters", causing NGO Monitor, the American Jewish Committee, and the Anti-Defamation League to label them anti-Israel and call on CAP to disassociate themselves from these statements.[29] Officials at CAP said the “inappropriate” language came only in personal tweets—not on CAP’s website or its ThinkProgress blog. The Tweets were deleted, and the authors apologized.[28]


The Center for American Progress is a 501(c)(3) organization under U.S. Internal Revenue Code. In 2013, CAP received $42 million from a variety of sources, including individuals, foundations, labor unions, and corporations.[30] From 2003 to 2007, CAP received about $15 million in grants from 58 foundations. Major individual donors include George Soros, Peter Lewis, Steve Bing, and Herb and Marion Sandler. The Center receives undisclosed sums from corporate donors.[31] In December 2013, the organization released a list of its corporate donors, which include Walmart, CitiGroup, Wells Fargo, defense contractor Northrup Grumman, America's Health Insurance Plans, and Eli Lilly and Company.[32][B]

In 2015, CAP released a partial list of its donors, which included 28 anonymous donors accounting for at least $5 million in contributions. [b]Named donors included the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates, which each gave between $500,000 and $999,999. CAP’s top donors include Walmart and Citigroup, each of which have given between $100,000 and $499,000.[33][34]

2015 Donors (excluding anonymous)[35] - Level

Ford Foundation - $1,000,000+
The Hutchins Family Foundation - $1,000,000+
Sandler Foundation - $1,000,000+
TomKat Charitable Trust - $1,000,000+
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation - $500,000 to $999,999
Joyce Foundation - $500,000 to $999,999
Not On Our Watch - $500,000 to $999,999
Open Square Charitable Gift Fund - $500,000 to $999,999
Embassy of United Arab Emirates - $500,000 to $999,999
Walton Family Foundation - $500,000 to $999,999
The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation - $500,000 to $999,999


1. "Center for American Progress" (PDF). Charity Navigator. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
2. "About the Center For American Progress". Center for American Progress. Retrieved January 17, 2013.
3. E.g.,
4. Eilperin, Juliet (February 24, 2010). "Former White House adviser Van Jones lands new D.C. gig at liberal think tank". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2012-11-13. Jones, who has been consulting for companies and nonprofits on environmental issues, will start teaching at Princeton University in June and is rejoining the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, next month.
5. McManus, Doyle (December 9, 2010). "Obama gets tough – with liberals". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-11-13. 'The liberal Center for American Progress estimates (optimistically) that the effect of the entire package could be to save or create 2.2 million jobs.
6. Madhani, Aamer (September 12, 2012). "Obama: Romney's Medicare plan to cost seniors thousands". USA Today. Retrieved 2012-11-13. Obama made the charge after his campaign cited a new study to reporters by the liberal group Center for American Progress Action Fund, an organization with close ties to his campaign.
7. Sullivan, Andy (November 5, 2012). "Sandy's winds of uncertainty blow through presidential race". Chicago Tribune. Reuters. Retrieved 2012-11-13. If Obama carries the popular vote by a narrow margin, it could have implications on his ability to govern effectively, according to Ruy Teixeira, a senior fellow at the liberal Center for American Progress.
8. Baker, Peter (November 7, 2012). "Obama Wins a Clear Victory, but Balance of Power Is Unchanged in Washington". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-11-13. Neera Tanden, the president of the liberal research group Center for American Progress, called the election 'a decisive mandate for a fair tax system where the wealthy contribute to address our deficit challenges.'
9. "Contact Us". Center for American Progress. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
10. Horowitz, Jason (November 3, 2011). "Think-tank post puts spotlight on veteran Democratic operative Neera Tanden". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2012-01-19.
11. Scherer, Michael (November 21, 2008). "Inside Obama's Idea Factory in Washington", Time. Retrieved 2009-12-02.
12. Robert Dreyfuss, "An Idea Factory for the Democrats", The Nation March 1, 2004
13. Sarah Rosen Wartell, Think Tank Executive and Housing Finance Expert, to be the Urban Institute's Third President
14. CAP article, strategic redeployment. Retrieved November 15, 2006.
15. Somanader, Tanya. "ThinkProgress blog". Retrieved 2011-07-07.
16. "Climate Progress - ThinkProgress". Retrieved 2013-02-19.
17. Roston, Eric (April 17, 2008). "feature on 'Top 15 Green Websites'". Time. Retrieved 2011-07-07.
18. Friedman, Thomas L., "The Inflection Is Near?", The New York Times, March 7, 2009.
19. "The 100 People Who Are Changing America", Rolling Stone magazine, March 18, 2009
20. "Heroes of the Environment 2009". Time magazine feature, September 2009, linking to full article: Walsh, Bryan. "Heroes of the Environment 2009 – Activists: Joe Romm", Time magazine, September 2009.
21. "Best Blogs of 2010". Time magazine, June 28, 2010.
22. "Center for American Progress news team takes aim at GOP". Politico.
23. "Add to the Collective Genius." Retrieved December 27, 2006.
24. "Soros' Deep Pockets vs. Bush". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2007-10-04.
25. Ben Smith and Chris Frates (December 9, 2008). "Where's transparency of Podesta group?". Retrieved 2011-07-07.
26. Krugman, Paul (January 28, 2010). "March of the Peacocks". The New York Times. Retrieved January 30, 2010.
27. Terkel, Amanda. "McCain's Foreign Affairs Speech". ThinkProgress. Retrieved August 12, 2011.
28. Klein, Ezra. "McCain the Plagiarist". American Prospect. Retrieved July 5, 2011.
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30. Frates, Chris. "Chamber of Commerce under fire for foreign cash". Politico. Retrieved July 4, 2011.
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40. "Our Supporters" (PDF). Center for American Progress. Retrieved 2015-04-14.


Alterman was and remains a critic of Ralph Nader for Nader's actions in the 2000 U.S. Presidential Election, arguing that Nader is to blame for the election of George W. Bush because of vote splitting.[14] He has called Nader "Bush's Useful Idiot,"[15] myopic,[16] and a deluded megalomaniac.[17] In the documentary An Unreasonable Man, he is quoted as saying:

The man needs to go away. I think he needs to live in a different country. He’s done enough damage to this one. Let him damage somebody else's now.[18]

Alterman has also criticized Steve Jobs for his avarice and for never giving any of his wealth to poor people. Jobs died with more than $8 billion in various bank accounts and with shareholdings in a tax free fund with assets of more than $70 billion. He has also accused Apple of business practices which ultimately result in the misery of Chinese workers.[19]

He appears in the award-winning documentary on Lee Atwater, Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story. In the film, Eric says "Race is poison, but it is poison that works for their side. People vote their fears and not their hopes, and Lee understood that." He also appears in Robert Greenwald's documentary Outfoxed. His critics have called him a member of the Israel lobby.[20]

The Israel lobby (at times called the Zionist lobby) is the diverse coalition of those who, as individuals and as groups, seek to influence the foreign policy of the United States in support of Zionism, Israel or the specific policies of its government.[1] The lobby consists of Jewish-American secular and religious groups. The most famous and visible group within the Israel lobby is the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). AIPAC and other groups within the Israel lobby influence American public policy in a variety of ways such as through education, responding to criticism of Israel, and putting forth arguments in support of Israel. The Israel lobby is known for its success in encouraging U.S. lawmakers to support the policies that it supports.

Major works

Sound & Fury: The Making of the Punditocracy (1992, 1993, 2000) ISBN 978-0-8014-8639-5
Who Speaks for America? Why Democracy Matters in Foreign Policy, (1998) ISBN 978-0-8014-3574-4
It Ain't No Sin to be Glad You're Alive: The Promise of Bruce Springsteen (1999, 2001)
What Liberal Media? The Truth About Bias and the News (2003, 2004) ISBN 978-0-465-00177-4
The Book on Bush: How George W. (Mis)leads America (2004) ISBN 0-14-303442-1
When presidents Lie: A History of Official Deception and its Consequences, (2004, 2005) ISBN 978-0-670-03209-9
Why We're Liberals: A Handbook for Restoring America’s Most Important Ideals (2008, 2009) ISBN 978-0-14-311522-9
Kabuki Democracy: The System vs. Barack Obama (2011) ISBN 978-1-56858-659-5
The Cause: The Fight for American Liberalism from Franklin Roosevelt to Barack Obama with Kevin Mattson (2012) 978-0-67-002343-1
Inequality and One City: Bill de Blasio and the New York Experiment, Year One


1. ... rt-2012-6/
2. Eric Alterman
3. "Eric Alterman". Retrieved 2010-04-16.
4. Eric Alterman (September 11, 2006). "I'm Fired". Retrieved 2006-09-11.
5. Alterman, Eric (December 22, 2008). "We're Movin' On; We'll Soon Be Gone...". Media Matters for America. Retrieved January 2, 2009.
6. "Why We're Liberals: A Handbook for Post-Bush America.". March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-24.
7. "Out of Print: The Death and Life of the American Newspaper". March 31, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-07.
8. Kabuki Democracy—and How to Fix It
9. Eric Alterman, Contributor, The Daily Beast
10. "New Faculty Bring Worlds of Knowledge to Brooklyn College". August 26, 2004. Retrieved 2007-06-05.
11. "CUNY Board Names Alterman Distinguished Prof at Brooklyn College". July 10, 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
12. "Eric Alterman, Senior Fellow". Center for American Progress. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
13. World Policy Institute. "Eric Alterman, Senior Fellow". Archived from the original on July 6, 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
14. Eric Alterman (February 8, 2006). "Dancing days are here again". Retrieved 2007-02-26.
15. Eric Alterman (September 16, 2004). "Bush's Useful Idiot". Retrieved 2007-02-26.
16. Eric Alterman (March 22, 2001). "Tweedledee, Indeed". Retrieved 2007-02-26.
17. Eric Alterman (June 6, 2004). "Phew". Retrieved 2007-02-26.
18. Democracy Now (February 5, 2007). "Ralph Nader on Why He Might Run in 2008, the Iraq War & the New Documentary "An Unreasonable Man"". Retrieved 2007-02-26.
19. Eric Alterman (November 9, 2011). "The Agony and Ecstasy—and 'Disgrace'—of Steve Jobs". Retrieved 2011-11-16.
20. What's on a man's mind. Interview with Reihan Salam. Recorded March 13, 2009. Posted March 16, 2009.
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