Continuing my series on the excellent book written by David Horowitz and Richard Poe entitled "The Shadow Party: How George Soros, Hillary Clinton, and Sixties Radicals Seized Control of the Democratic Party" in which I excerpt key portions to highlight the danger America faces from the new left.
In the last post I posted about the overview the authors gave of The Shadow Party, in the following seven parts I will print those sections of the book dealing with all Seven Sisters of The Shadow Party. The first sister being MoveOn.Org:
"It feels so bourgeois!" exclaimed a man who had just made the first campaign contribution of his life. Recorded by LA Weekly writer Brendan Bernhard, this man’s outburst bespeaks a mass phenomenon for which MoveOn.org can largely take credit.
More then a website, MoveOn.org is a movement cleverly tailored to lure the young, the Net-savvy and the self-consciously fashionable into supporting mainstream Democrats such as John Kerry – the sort of candidate whom today’s digital hipsters would normally dismiss as a square. MoveOn’s peculiar contribution to the Shadow Party is its ability to draw into the political process America’s ever-growing hordes of self-absorbed cyber-existentialists – "tech-savvy progressives," in the words of Salon.com writer Michelle Goldberg – and convince them that a vote for the Democrats is a blow against middle-class conformity. MoveOn is the Joe Camel of the Shadow Party, playing to the deep-seated antipathy that bohemians of every age group harbor toward all things normal, wholesome, traditional and adult.
Regarding MoveOn’s success at harnessing popular entertainment to the Democrat cause, whether in the form of rock-concert fundraisers or Bush-bashing ads with an MTV edge, the LA Weekly’s Bernhard concludes, "[I]t’s all part of a giant, perhaps unprecedented effort by the country’s intellectual and artistic communities to unseat the conspicuously unintellectual, inartistic man in the Oval Office."
The authors then delve into how the married MoveOn creators, Wesley Boyd and Joan Blades, became bored with their successful software company called Berkeley Systems Inc, while at the same time becoming quite angry with the Clinton impeachment. So they formed MoveOn.org after their petition to "move on" past the impeachments met with success.
They launched MoveOn.org on 22 September 1998. One month later on 23 October they rolled out MoveOn PAC, a federal political action committee designed to draw political contributions from MoveOn’s fast growing membership. MoveOn PAC raised millions of dollars for Democrat candidates in the elections of 1998, 2000, and 2002. By the time Wes Boyd met with Soros in the fall of 2003, MoveOn boasted an e-mail list of more than 2.2 million members in the US and over 800,000 abroad. The lean-and-mean operation rented no office space. Its ten full-time staffers worked from home, staying in touch via e-mail, instant messaging and weekly conference calls.
MoveOn’s fundraising feats impressed Beltway strategists. On 17 April 2004, MoveOn held a national "Bake Sale for Democracy," in which members conducted more than 1,000 bake sales around the country, raising $750,000 in a single day for MoveOn’s anti-Bush campaign. When a Republican redistricting plan threatened Democratic incumbents in the Texas state senate in May 2003, an appeal from MoveOn brought in $1 million in contributions in two days, to support the beleaguered Democrats.
In 2002, Boyd and Blades hired 32-year-old Zack Exley as MoveOn’s organizing director. A computer programmer and Web designer by trade, Exley had gained national attention during the 2000 campaign when he launched GWBush.com, a website featuring doctored photographs portraying candidate Bush as a dope fiend. Exley was a hardened activist of the Left. Trained by the AFL-CIO, he had worked as an undercover union organizer for five years, and had done a stint training activists for the Ruckus Society, an anarchist group whose violent tactics first caught the public eye during the 1999 riots against the World Trade Organization meeting in Seattle. Exley brought a ruthless edge to MoveOn’s fundraising and propaganda drives, which soon aroused the admiration of mainstream Democrats. In May 2003, the Howard Dean presidential campaign hired Exley away from MoveOn for two weeks in order to turbo-charged Dean’s Web operations. Exley finally left MoveOn for good in April 2004 to become Director of Online Communications and Online Organizing for the Kerry-Edwards campaign.
In the meantime, George Soros had incorporated MoveOn into his Shadow Party. Following the 17 September 2003 meeting between Soros and Boyd mentioned above, Soros and his associates poured nearly $6.2 million into MoveOn over a period of six months, according to the Center for Public Integrity. The contributions included $2.5 million from George Soros personally, $2.5 million from Peter B. Lewis of Progressive Insurance, $941,427 from Peter Bing of Shangri-La Entertainment, $100,000 from Soros’ son Jonathan, an attorney and financier recently promoted to deputy manager of Soros fund Management LLC.
Jonathan Soros became personally involved with MoveOn.org’s activities. In December 2003, he collaborated with techno-rocker Moby to organize "Bush in 30 Seconds," an online contest for the best 30-second anti-Bush TV ad. MoveOn agreed to air the winning commercial on national television. Among the 1,500-odd submissions to the contest were two ads juxtaposing footage of George W. Bush and Adolf Hitler. MoveOn posted these ads on its site. Under pressure from Jewish groups and Republicans, MoveOn pulled the Hitler ads and apologized for them.
Despite such gaffes, MoveOn need not worry about its media image. Major networks and newspapers pour forth an endless flood of free publicity for the group. Calculated in terms of equivalent advertising fees, the millions MoveOn raises in political contributions doubtless pales in value beside the worshipful profiles and saccharine coverage that major media never tire of bestowing upon Boyd and Blades’ website and political campaigns.
What are they up to now?
In the wake of President Bush’s commutation of prison time for convicted felon Lewis Libby and a developing constitutional clash over important subpoenas, influential Democratic activists are pressing Congress to put impeachment back on the table.
Today MoveOn.org, the powerhouse group of 3.2 million political activists, launched an unprecedented petition calling on Congress to impeach Vice President Cheney if he defies congressional subpoenas issued to investigate the Bush administration’s purge of prosecutors at the Justice Department. Leading bloggers have also launched a targeted campaign to specifically lobby Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee to put impeachment back on the table, and as The Nation’s John Nichols reports, some members of Congress say it is now time to "reconsider impeachment proceedings."
Next, the Center for American Progress.