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"Steady, Reliable Joe" Adopts Divide and Conquer Tactics

Reported by Marie Therese - August 9, 2006 -

This morning I watched the roll-out of the FOX News-Joe Lieberman love-fest and was saddened by the realization that Lieberman has clearly opted to adopt some of the "divide, conquer and win" tactics used by Karl Rove so effectively against the Gore-Lieberman ticket in the year 2000 and the Kerry-Edwards ticket in 2004.

Rove wins because he divides with his left hand while pretending to be a uniter with his right. His candidates always use the big, important archteypical "code" words - unity, patriotism, strength, purpose, values, honesty, honor - while the campaign itself encourages disunity by accusing the opposition of being "unpatriotic" and "weak" with no sense of purpose, rudderless and without values, dishonest to the core and without a smidgen of personal or national honor. It's the old shell game, updated.

From what I saw this morning on FOX & Friends, Joe Lieberman and one of his advisors, Lanny Davis, have been studying Rove's play book.

Yesterday, Republican strategist Ed Rollins set the stage for one theme when he pointed out that the Lieberman-Lamont race created a schism between Jewish and African-American Democrats, the clear implication being that Jewish Democrats sided with Lieberman while African-American Democrats went for Lamont. Strategy #1: Drive a wedge between these two groups.

SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN: "I don't want my party to be taken over by the Ned Lamonts and Maxine Waters' who will not give assurance to the people of America that we're prepared to do what needs to be done to protect our people in a dangerous world. [N.B. Maxine Waters is African-American.]

Here are some of other themes I detected during today's F&F.

• Joe Lieberman is a victim.

SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN (during 8-8-07 concession speech): "I'm disappointed not just because I lost but because the old politics of partisan polarization won today. For the sake of our state, our country and my party, I cannot and will not let that result stand..."

7:15 AM EDT - LANNY DAVIS: "That doesn't mean those votes weren't legitimate. It means he has the right to go to the entire electorate and present his case that there's a different kind of politics than the politics of partisanship, polarization and misleading and distorted advertisments, which is the way his opponent won ..."

• Ned Lamont is a millionaire who's buying his way into the Senate.

6:10 AM EDT - STEVE DOOCY: "Joe Lieberman went down to defeat last night. The millionaire Ned Lamont from Greenwich, Connecticut, who ran on an anti-war, anti-Bush, anti-Lieberman platform is the big winner."

7:17 AM EDT - LANNY DAVIS: "Well, I think that Joe Lieberman learned that when a millionaire writes $4 million of his own money in checks - that's a fact - and goes on television with ads that grossly distort his record, he should have attacked back quickly as should have Max Cleland, as should Senator Kerry on Swift Boats. That's the lesson. When lies are paid for, especially by a millionaire who has his own money, you can't be silent."

Comment: A 2003 CNN.com article noted that Senator Lieberman had an estimated net worth of $482,000 to $1.8 million. According to Open Secrets he currently has $3,487,184 cash on hand, what's left after raising $7,681,871 from various donors in campaign year 2006. 81% of his contributions are from individuals.

• Lamont supporters are against Joe Lieberman personally. Lieberman is a devout Orthodox Jew. Therefore the subliminal message becomes that Lamont supporters are against Lieberman because they are anti-Semitic.

7:15 AM EDT - E. D. HILL: "Well, Lanny, that's the story. That there was and it's - the big story, of course, is that you're the person saying this about the Democrats, that there was - mean campaigning isn't quite doing it justice. The anti-Semitism, the incredible hatred that came out against a man who is well-respected ...."


E. D. HILL: "... by both parties was really astounding. And you wrote in your editorial, in your op-ed, that that's what you found shocking, being a life-long Democrat and having been raised that that only comes from the right wing."

Comment: Clearly Lanny Davis doesn't like blogs or bloggers. Mr. Davis has not done his research. In his oh-so-righteous rant in the Wall Street Journal, he railed against "Liberal McCarthyism" and cited 4 examples of what he called "posts" that appeared on Huffington Post and Daily Kos. They were NOT posts. They were comments culled from thousands of others. Davis does not understand - nor did we when we first started blogging - that there are people out there in cyberland who are sick and disturbed. They have the mindset of the KKK or the Aryan nation. They swoop in and post hateful things and those of us who run the blogs can't always find and delete them fast enough. In his op-ed Lanny Davis himself resorted to the same type of "distort and accuse" tactics patented by the likes of Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity. And FOX News was all too willing to give him the platform to disseminate it.

• A vote for Lamont is a vote for a lily-livered, cowardly Democratic party and against your own best interests and the future security of America.

7:40 AM EDT - CARL CAMERON: "There is no doubt that Mr. Lieberman is going to be on the attack in the ensuing three months before the general election. We asked him today if he still believed, as he did two days ago, that a Lamont win would put the Democratic party in jeopardy of being viewed as weak on security matters ..."

• "Steady, reliable Joe" (as described by Judge Andrew Napolitano) is the victim of a shadowy group of smear merchants who lurk on the "internets", sending hate messages through its "tubes" and giving their money to radical groups whose sole purpose is the destruction of the American Way of Life.

7:18 AM EDT - LANNY DAVIS: "And I wrote that piece in the Wall Street Journal, not to say all Democrats are bigots. What I said is there's a small minority of extremists, that complicity in our silence is unacceptable any longer."

7:40AM EDT - CARL CAMERON: " ... and today, Joe Lieberman, the Independent candidate for re-election to the U. S. Senate, unleashed on Ned Lamont and some members of his own party. Here's what he had to say."

VIDEO CLIP: SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN: " ... Those, those terrorists are out there. They want to strike us again as they did on 9-11 and we can't deceive ourselves about that. The American people, ultimately, I'm afraid, no matter how upset they are about the course of our country and the direction of the Bush administration, ultimately [they] want their government to protect them. That's the Harry Truman, JFK, Bill Clinton tradition in the Democratic party. I'm fighting to keep that tradition alive."

• "Steady, reliable Joe" creates a "dilemma" for centrist Democrats. Should they stand with Joe, stay on the sidelines, pay lip service to Lamont while working secretly for his defeat or actually support the candidate chosen by a record turn-out of Democratic voters?

7:41 AM EDT - CARL CAMERON: "Just before noon, Ned Lamont and the Connecticut Democratic party will have a Unity Rally that will be attended by Chris Dodd, the senior Senator from Connecticut, who supported Joe Lieberman in the Democratic primary up until yesterday. It speaks to a real dilemma for Democrats. Lamont won. He's the nominee. But an awful lot of centrist Democrats and those who weren't supporting him [Lamont] and do share Lieberman's concerns about the Democatic party's reputation on security are gonna have to stand next to him anyway."

• "Steady, reliable Joe" can count on a lot of coverage in the conservative media because his "values" are compatible.

As evidenced by this morning's FOX & Friends, Senator Lieberman lost no time running to FOX News. They presented clips from an interview with FOX's Chief Political Correspondent, Carl Cameron, that had just ended.

• Will "steady, reliable Joe" get an endorsement from the Republican party?

6:10 AM EDT - DOOCY: "Also, I heard somebody talkin' on the radio this morning comin' in. There's a possibility that the Republicans could endorse Joe Lieberman, if he runs as an Independent."

7:41 AM EDT - CARL CAMERON: "And Joe Lieberman has a little bit of amplification for that today from - of all places - the Republican National Committee, which has issued a news release talking about the transformation of the Democratic party from strength to weakness - that's their words - talking about the histories of FDR and JFK and Harry Truman all the way up through Jimmy Carter and now Ned Lamont. Pretty tough stuff."

Later in the show, the trio interviewed schlockmeister author David Horowitz, who hyped his new book "The Shadow Party: How George Soros, Hillary Clinton and the 60s Radicals Seized Control of the Democratic Party".

7:46 AM EDT - DAVID HOROWITZ: "The shadow party is a network that George Soros put together. ... the shadow party, one should understand - this is the morning after a three-time sitting Senator and Vice-Presidential candidate lost a primary, a Democratic primary. The power in the Democratic party has shifted outside the party to what I call the shadow party and this is a group that Soros put together. They put three hundred million dollars into the Kerry campaign. They control the Democrats' ground war, that is the "Get Out the Vote" and they control the media war."


HOROWITZ: "So the Democratic party is no longer really the significant backer of Democratic candidates at the national level. It's this shadow party."


Hey, David, yoo-hoo, here we are!

The vast left-wing conspiracy.

We're as close as your computer.

Right here! Yoo-hoo!! Helloooo!!!! Maybe you just haven't tried hard enough to find us?

Log onto http://www.newshounds.us and start reading!

We're hardly hidden.

In fact, we'd like to be better known. As we've said before, we'd like it if good old George would toss a few dollars our way.

George Soros isn't hiding.

Hillary Clinton isn't hiding.

The Democratic party isn't hiding.

MoveOn.org isn't hiding.

Media Matters isn't hiding.

Daily Kos isn't hiding.

None of us are hiding.

Words like "shadow party" conjure up images of secret handshakes, smoke-filled rooms and satchels of money changing hands.

Actually, David, why don't you investigate the real Shadow Party?

I believe you'll find that in Texas.

It's called TrimPac and it was set up by the original shadow daddy of them all - Tom Delay.