December 24, 2012

Holiday Card From The Johnsons

Happy Holidays from the Johnsons:

card_2012_screen.jpg

The back of the card:

Published by Sudeep Johnson
Doggie Paw Cards, Inc.
www.doggiepawcards.com
Many thanks to Paddington the little white dog, without whom there would be no card.

Here is last year's: Holiday Card From The Johnsons

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:05 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 11, 2012

Surgery

Well I just had surgery yesterday for a "femoral hernia." Beforehand I was trying to figure out how to let readers know if I died, but I didn't. So there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:06 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 6, 2012

Smirking Chimp Fundraising Drive

Everybody go give some $$ to The Smirking Chimp | News And Commentary from the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:18 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 5, 2012

6 Reasons We Need to Protect America from Texas Politicians

I write this for AlterNet: 6 Reasons We Need to Protect America from Texas Politicians | Alternet

It looks like the influence of Fox News, Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the right-wing nutcase-creation machine might have tipped Texas Republicans over the edge and into dangerous territory. Their politicians are flying right off the rails. Is it time to think about setting up border checkpoints around Texas to protect ourselves? Even better, maybe we should just build a big fence around the state to keep their elected officials in.

So go read!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:04 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 22, 2012

New Blog

Go check out The Daily Change | Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:27 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 16, 2012

10th

Today is this blog's 10th anniversary!

Go here, start at the bottom, scroll up. July, 2002.

Ten years ago we were still reeling from the Bush v Gore Supreme Court decision appointing Bush President, where they ruled that allowing the counting of all of the votes would "threaten irreparable harm" to George Bush.

It was the blogs that showed people that there were lots of other people who were upset, who saw things going on that were not right, the the national media and the elite pundits were full of shit, that people were not alone!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:58 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 13, 2012

10-Year-Anniversary: Trade Problem

For Seeing the Forest's 10th anniversary I'll be posting a few of my favorites. Here's one, from 2005: The Trade Problem

View of San Francisco from Sausalito.

See how this ship is riding high off the water? This ship is loaded with empty containers, bound for China.

Ships come into the port loaded with goods that we buy from China. But China doesn't buy very much from us. So we have to send ships back loaded with empty containers. (Well almost empty, they're actually filled with dollars, and jobs, and the future.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:28 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 9, 2012

skippy's tenth

The tenth anniversary of the blog skippy the bush kangaroo is coming up (just 5 days before the 10th anniversary of this blog).

skippy was one of the first blog, if not the first, to put Seeing the Forest on its blogroll, helping this blog get off to a good start.

Blogging has come a long way, and not all of us have stuck with it. It has been quite an experience, struggle, adventure and urgent undertaking for all of us.

Go give skippy a great, bit CONGRATS!!!!!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:31 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

June 13, 2012

Tenth Blog Anniversary Party Coming In July

Actually I'll probably just beg for money to help pay the bandwidth bills...

There's an orange PayPal Donate button in the left column. I'm trying to raise $1,000,000 to pay the income tax on what I make doing this.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:11 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

April 16, 2012

Tenth

Atrios' 10th tomorrow: Eschaton: At Long Last My Personal Nightmare Is Almost Over

This blog's tenth is in July.


Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:58 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

December 29, 2011

Dave On Hartmann Talking About Wall Street Crimes

This is me on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture TV show Tuesday, talking about my AlterNet article, 7 of the Nastiest Scams, Rip-Offs and Tricks From Wall Street Crooks:

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:21 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 28, 2011

I Review Clinton's New Book

It's over at AlterNet: Bill Clinton's Unreality: Tinkering With Unpassable Ideas, when Transformation is What We Need | Books | AlterNet

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:55 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 18, 2011

5 Privatization Nightmares

Here is a piece I did exclusively for AlterNet -- go check it out: Privatization Nightmare: 5 Public Services That Should Never Be Handed Over to Greedy Corporations | Economy | AlterNet,

Who gains – and who loses – when public assets and jobs are turned over to the private sector?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:36 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

October 23, 2011

I'm Back Up At Huffington Post

Hey people the labor thing with Huffington Post has ended and I am back at Huffington with a Post: Dave Johnson: Is A Flat Tax Fair?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:07 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

October 10, 2011

Blogger & Dog

Dave and Paddington

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:10 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 30, 2011

The DONATE Button

Over in the left column there and down a ways is a DONATE button. It says PayPal on it. This helps me pay to server company, and once in a while maybe a cup of coffee, too, though not so much for a while...

So please consider donating to keep this site going. Thanks.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:37 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 14, 2011

Here's The Virtually Speaking People Are Talking About

The one where I got heated: Seeing the Forest: Listen To Susie And Dave

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:40 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 10, 2011

Listen To Susie And Dave

Susie Madrak and myself last night on Virtually Speaking turned out pretty good, except I got pretty heated at one point, talking about the "cuts." Just click the following to listen:

Dave Johnson, Virtually Speaking Susie w/Susie Madrak

Recovering journalist and class warrior Susie Madrak explores the impact of current events on the daily lives of working class people. This week: Susie talks with Dave Johnson about the stock market and the Democratic leadership and the Congressional Super Committee.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:31 PM | Comments (2) | Link Cosmos

August 5, 2011

Holy Crap Missed The Blog's 9th Anniversary

Holy crap July 16 was Seeing the Forest's 9th anniversary. Go see: Seeing The Forest - Welcome

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:59 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 2, 2011

Bartcop Still Going

Wow I haven't visited BartCop Entertainment for a while!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:01 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 3, 2011

Vacation

I'll be out of the country for 2 weeks, in England. I might put up a few posts. I might post up a few pubs, too.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:44 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

May 18, 2011

My Blogroll

Eschaton: Good morning is pointing out a few blogs for readers to visit.

I used to proudly have maybe one of the longest blogrolls available. Then I entered everything into a plug-in to handle it. Then the plug-in stopped working. Apologies.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:31 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

May 6, 2011

Appealing To The “Center” Drives Away Voters

I have a post up, Appealing To The “Center” Drives Away Voters, over at the Dirty Hippies blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:12 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

April 11, 2011

Another Forest

The Forest a Progressive Political Blog

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:02 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

March 7, 2011

Dirty Hippies

Dirty Hippies

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:49 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

February 22, 2011

Dirty Hippies

Dirty Hippies

I'll explain later...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:50 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

February 4, 2011

Open Left Is Closing

Open Left:: Open Left is closing

No money.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:14 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

December 15, 2010

The New Revolutionaries Take to the Internet: The Tale of WikiLeaks and Julian Assange

WikiLeaks raises some of the most poignant questions of our time about the power of cyber warfare, the role of hackers, and the future of the Internet. It is not a coincidence that Madame Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has created a whole new effort to explore and fight cyber terrorism. In fact, WikiLeaks and Assange may represent the first of the wholesale anarchists using today's information highway to do battle. Consider that instead of taking to the streets in protest, this generation may take to the Internet to wage their battles and carry their message. We are living a time represented by the power of Facebook that links over 500 million people together. And if this is true, we may have unleashed a whole new generation of cyber warlords on the world's information centers.

Many of our brethren are writing about democracy, liberty and the freedom of information pivoting off what they believe WikiLeaks stands for. Julian Assange has been elevated to the "Man of the People" as filmmaker Michael Moore contributes to his bail fund, and the Huffington Post sets up a whole section devoted to whistleblower Fantasy Land. You know, we all need something valiant to believe in during the difficult days of Obama. The obnoxious wealthy are dancing on the heads of US lawmakers. The banks are still doing the Texas two-step, and the Middle Class continues to suffer in silence with simmering rage. There are two deeply divisive wars. China is rising and scaring the heck out of us. The liberals of the Democratic Party continue to act like toddlers, and Sarah Palin is making hay laughing all the way to her off-shore accounts. So Julian Assange, or whoever is backing him, could not have picked a better moment of discontent. They are evoking new archetypes of good and bad in a world that is increasing grey.

Assange is the anti-hero. He has been personified as a man with no country who is a metrosexual kind of guy willing to risk it all to uncover the truth. Yet, we don't really know much about this man, or what makes him tick. Is he really the wizard behind or the curtain, or there really someone or something else pulling the strings. Is he a hacker extraordinaire, or just a man that is a brilliant online community organizer? In fact and most importantly, what does it mean to be a hacker? Are hackers by definition anarchists, or is it just Julian that wants to topple the establishment at any cost. Or are there droves of these cyber-sleuths trolling the black lands of the Internet looking for back doors into silos of information? Remember Assange was a cryptologist of sorts which is the super duper folks that develop the ways to tunnel into software code. And it may be fair to assume that these same hackers were probably responsible for the DOS (Denial of Service) attacks on Visa, Master Card and others. And if this is true then who is really pulling the strings since these were very, targeted attacks on specific corporations that shut out the money flow for WikiLeaks? The bottom line is that we still don't know how the WikiLeaks information is gathered and/or obtained. Does it come from this new breed of whistleblowers, such as Private Manning that had a rare blend of tech talents and access? If so; does this new breed even resemble our beloved archetypical whistleblowers circa Daniel Ellsberg, or even Erin Brockovich? And I ask again, have we grappled with the ramifications of an Internet that is locked down in response to WikiLeaks? Are we ready to usher in a new age of restrictions? This sadly will make the debate around net neutrality seem like child's play if cyber war erupts.

Please note that this post appeared earlier in the day in the Huffington Post.

Please note that a selection of the reference material used for this article and others in the past on WikiLeaks is included in the complex pearltree below.

Wiki Leaks

Posted by Michelle at 11:43 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 26, 2010

Susie Is Having A Fundraiser

Suburban Guerrilla サ Blog Archive サ Fall Fundraiser

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:13 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 22, 2010

Progressive Breakfast

Progressive Breakfast?

It's a great way to get the morning briefing. You can also sign up to have it sent to your email inbox.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:33 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 4, 2010

Down With Tyranny

You don't read DownWithTyranny! often enough. I know I don't.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:10 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 22, 2010

I'm Back

I'm back and you people better shape up.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:06 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 20, 2010

Out Of Town

Hey I have been out of town all week, in Alaska, with very little connectivity. (I'm in Glacier Bay right now.)

I'll be back Monday.

Vacations are wonderful things.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:18 PM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

August 2, 2010

Video of Netroots Nation Panels

You can still attend Netroots Nation 2010! Go to Netroots Nation Sessions | Netroots Nation.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:08 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 28, 2010

Get Progressive Breakfast

Every morning the Progressive Breakfast delivers a roundup of new of interest to progressives.

You can sign up for it at the end of today's progressive breakfast, by entering your email address.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:04 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 27, 2010

Atrios More Popular Than Jesus

He says so in Bringing The Band Back Together.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:48 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

July 26, 2010

Back From Vegas

I am back from Vegas, but having trouble getting myself restarted.

So in the meantime just go read everything Paul Rosenberg writes. Everything.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:34 PM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

July 25, 2010

In The Vegas Airport

How often do you flee TO the airport to escape the prices?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:22 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 24, 2010

Still In Vegas

Last night I went to the bowling party and it was a blast but I had to leave for a 9:30pm meeting for an hour on manufacturing policy but then I went back to the bowling party, and went to watch the poker tournament... Ah the blogger life.

Hey, down in the left column there is a DONATE button. Might need it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:11 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 23, 2010

Where's Dave?

I am at the Netroots Nation gathering in Las Vegas. I'll probably be too busy to post much.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:03 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 16, 2010

Blog Birthday, 8 Years!

It is the eighth birthday of Seeing the Forest.

skippy is 8 years old. Pen-Elayne on the Web is 8 years old. Atrios is four months older (scroll to the bottom.) Liberal Oasis was June, 2002. Daily Kos was May, 2002. MyDD was even older. Credit where it is due: Dave Winer (scroll alllllll... the way down for a real shock).

8 years is many, many lifetimes in internet time. This blogging career enabled me to be the first person ever to post a picture of my dog from a national political convention and they can never take that away from me! (When you get there scroll down a bit, but then scroll up a few posts for another.)

To celebrate, here is a favorite post from August 2005, The Trade Problem:




View of San Francisco from Sausalito.




See how this ship is riding high off the water? This ship is loaded with empty containers, bound for China.

Ships come into the port loaded with goods that we buy from China. But China doesn't buy very much from us. So we have to send ships back loaded with empty containers. (Well almost empty, they're actually filled with dollars, and jobs, and the future.)

Or scroll through the Housing Bubble series starting in 2005. But who could have known?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:50 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 14, 2010

skippy -- 8 Years Today

skippy the bush kangaroo: happy blogiversary

Seeing the Forest is 8 years old on the 16th.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:48 PM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

July 4, 2010

Did I Mention?

Did I mention that I'm sitting in at the Firedoglake News Desk over the weekend? I guess I didn't. Anyway I'm over there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:35 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

June 24, 2010

Reagan Revolution Home To Roost: The Series

Reagan Revolution: Home To Roost: The Series

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:53 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

June 17, 2010

I'm Over At Open Left

I'm sitting in at Open Left for a few days...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:01 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

June 6, 2010

In DC At America's Future Now Conference

I am in DC at the Campaign for America's Future's annual #afn10 America's Future Now conference.

If you are in DC, come! If you are not in DC live video of the major events of the conference is being webcast at the conference site.

I will be in a blogger panel on Tuesday with Zach Carter, Digby, Richard RJ Eskow, Terrance Heath and Sara Robinson.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:09 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

April 28, 2010

Over At Open Left

Hey I forgot to mention that I am sitting in for Chris over at Open Left this week. I'll try to X-post but head over there for the full effect.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:43 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

March 8, 2010

This Is What Is Great About Blogging

This is what is great about blogging. Go read it and see what I mean: Alec Baldwin: Thoughts on Hosting the 2010 Academy Awards

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:40 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

January 1, 2010

Go See The New MyDD

A whole new look, new functions, new year, new decade over at MyDD :: Direct Democracy for People-Powered Politics

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:29 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

December 18, 2009

Twitter Users

I'm switching the Seeing the Forest twitter from my personal account http://twitter.com/dcjohnson to a Seeing the Forest account http://twitter.com/seeingtheforest

Feeds will continue to go to both but sign up at seeingtheforest specifically for the site feed.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:36 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 25, 2009

I Am At Open Left Today

I'm sitting in for Chris Bowers over at Open Left today. I'll cross-post a few things here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:00 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

October 19, 2009

TWO Great Progressive Blog Sites AND A Great CA Site

Take a look at the Campaign for America's Future blog, Blog for Our Future. There is a LOT there. Bookmark it.

Also, there is great thought-provoking stuff at the Commonweal Institute blog, Uncommon Denominator. Bookmark that, too.

And take a look at the names of the poeople posting at both of these sites - you'll be surprised.

Finally, if you are in California you will want to check out the Speak Out California site!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:29 PM | Comments (2) | Link Cosmos

October 14, 2009

The Johnsonian Style

An email I received (sent to Campaign for America's Future):

Subject line: who is the writing engine for dave johnson's work

I am aware of writing engines and nationally suggestive content data bases.

If you were not aware of it, which I think would be profound unprofessionalism, writers and blogs are often used in unison to attack or support certain issues.

I have found profound similarities in style nationwide in editorial and content of a few people in what I shall refer to as the johnsonian style and message.

It is obvious that the writing is suggested and that the rhetoric is patterned and predictable.

I was wondering what feed in your group and in particular the editor for dave johnson's content uses.

I was wondering also if it not to personal, though I think it should be offered on demand for the sake of knowing the edge to propaganda, what religion that editior might be, as it has a clear ringing note for the sake of italian laws and denial of USA Constitutional RIghts under Amendment 13 to be free from forced servility.

It is a bitchyness of people not getting to have the slaves they think they should own for whatever abusive manipulation they think they deserve.

And your writing engine, or automated editiorializations are typical and patterned in that regard.

So thank you for your honest response,

the Response can be email to this address: heididyke@XXXXXX


I think this is why we call them wingnuts.

But it is true, alas, I am a machine, a feed, an automated editorialization. A Johnsonian.


Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:00 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

October 6, 2009

Disclosure: Stuff I Get As A Blogger

As a blogger I am sent books by publishers, which I try to read and always hope to write about. I have mentioned a few of them here, but haven't found time for any full reviews.

About once every six months someone clicks the "Donate" button. I haven't been getting many ads here, but there is one here right now. The ad revenue has not kept up with the cost for hosting and bandwidth.

That's about it. This is not done for the money.

I think once in a while we do get a professional commenter, though.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:56 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

October 5, 2009

Product Bloggers Must Disclose

This from the Federal Trade Commission: FTC: Bloggers must disclose payments for reviews,

The Federal Trade Commission will require bloggers to clearly disclose any freebies or payments they get from companies for reviewing their products.

It is the first time since 1980 that the commission has revised its guidelines on endorsements and testimonials, and the first time the rules have covered bloggers.


My question: will this include people leaving "customer review" comments who are obviously working for the company that makes the product they are "reviewing?"

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:50 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 24, 2009

Blogging the G20 Summit

Hey I am posting all day and tomorrow from Pittsburgh on the G20 Summit, over at Campaign for America's Future's
Blog for OutFuture|

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:48 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 24, 2009

Newstalgia

This is an awesome site: Newstalgia.

This is old clips, sound and video. Things like 1947 Claude Pepper on Meet the Press or Pink Floyd in 1967.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:24 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

August 6, 2009

New Jobs With Justice Blog

Go read: Jobs with Justice Blog

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:43 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 26, 2009

Sunday Backyard Harvest Blogging

Atrios posted Sunday Rooftop Harvest Blogging so I figured I would post a Sunday Backyard Harvest Blogging post.

This is what we picked this morning:

SundayHarvest.jpg

And this is what we picked Friday:

FridayHarvest.jpg

(This is also posted at Growing the Garden)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:02 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 24, 2009

Making It In America

Take a look at the project I am working on at Campaign for America's Future: Making It In America | OurFuture.org

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:33 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 21, 2009

Progressive Infrastructure Being Built Before Your Eyes

Take a look at The Commonweal Institute Blog: Uncommon Denominator, and scroll down.

LOTS of good stuff there from the Progressive Op-Ed Program. You might recognize some of the names because you mightalready read their blogs: Brad Friedman, Jill Richardson, Brad Reed, Nezua Limon, Allison Arieff, Michelle Mustonen, Joanna Guldi, Chris Bowers, Kyle Gillette, Mary Ratcliff... Go see them all.

This is progressive infrastructure being built before your eyes.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:51 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 16, 2009

Seven Years Blogging

Seeing the Forest is seven years old today.

This is one of my favorite posts:
The Retirement Plan of the Unemployed Man

Another one:
Who Is The Crazy Person In The Room?

skippy, too!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:42 AM | Comments (2) | Link Cosmos

July 15, 2009

I'm Over At Open Left

I'm blogging over at Open Left for the next two weeks. My first post, Open Left:: Ideas, is up now. I'll cross post some of my posts here as well.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:48 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 14, 2009

Personal News

Beginning tomorrow I will be blogging at Open Left for two weeks, sitting in for Chris Bowers while he is off getting married and taking some time off. See Open Left:: Going To The Chapel.

Also, Monday I will begin as a Fellow with Campaign for America's Future, writing there twice a week.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:35 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

July 9, 2009

been There?

Have you visited The Left Coaster lately?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:36 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

May 19, 2009

Working At The Polls Today

I am working today as an Inspector at a polling place for California's special election. It's a long day and I am not likely to be posting.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:57 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

May 12, 2009

Moving Day

The house we rent was sold and we got 30 days notice, so we are moving today.

I hate moving. If I post anything it will be an angry rant. Watch your backs.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:48 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

February 12, 2009

California Readers

If you live in California you should check in at Calitics California Politics Blog every day.

And, of course, check in at Speak Out California every day. Please sign up for their email list.

ALSO be sure to do the same at the Courage Campaign!

Send this post to your California friends and family.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:56 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

February 1, 2009

Blogroll Amnesty

Please go read skippy the bush kangaroo: b.a.d. days are here again!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:42 AM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

January 28, 2009

It Wasn't The Republicans

Quick thought: It wasn't the Republicans who didn't put restrictions and controls into the $700 billion TARP Wall Street/bank bailout bill. Democrats wrote and passed that bill.

Now the money is being used for union busting, lobbying, bonuses, dividends...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:23 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

December 24, 2008

Holiday Greetings From The Johnsons

Xmas_card_2008.jpg

Here is last year's card.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:59 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

Comment Spam

Seeing the Forest is getting a flood of comment spam all of a sudden, so I am turning on the requirement that you be authenticated before a comment is automatically published. If you are, your comment will immediately appear. If not I have to approve it. Sorry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:02 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

December 12, 2008

Talking Progressive Infrastructure

I'll have a post up, and will be sticking around to talk in the comments about progressive infrastructure at 11am PDT (2pm EST) Saturday over at Firedoglake.

Update The post is up, and there is a lively discussion, come leave a comment.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:33 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

December 8, 2008

Dancimals

Go see Dancimals over at Smelling the Coffee:

sj_dancing_animals.gif

Just in time for Christmas!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:45 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 26, 2008

The Government Must Bail Out Blogs

I just came from a briefing by leading economists who explained what is about to happen to the country because there are so few advertisements and donations coming in to the blogs. You would not believe the hush that came over the room as they described the effects on working people as they get laid off, thrown out of their houses, their cars and clothes taken from them, they are denied food except for oatmeal and small bugs, and their children are taken from them to work in government mines.

It is imperative that the Congress come up with a bailout plan, and it must happen within 48 hours, or the very worst will happen -- and it will be the Democrats' fault!

The blogs require an immediate infusion of $300 billion dollars, and it must happen right away, or things beyond your imagination (and mine, apparently) will happen to all of us. We absolutely must avoid this. Immediately, within 48 hours at the very latest, this money must be allocated and provided.

Update - about 5 minutes after posting this I came across this post by Sirota.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:23 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 19, 2008

Oilver Willis

Everyone should read Oliver Willis every day because I said so.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:28 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

Taylor Marsh

You should all read Taylor Marsh every day because I said so.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:22 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 7, 2008

Oprah "Mystery Man" is Seeing the Forest Blogger Sam Perry

sam_oprah.jpg

It can now be revealed that Oprah's "Mystery Man" -- or "Hanky Man" at CNN -- is Seeing the Forest blogger Sam Perry. He will be on the Oprah show today.

A recent post by Sam from the Democratic Convention: From Denver - two concerns

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:33 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

November 4, 2008

Obama Will Win

Maybe I can go get a job now.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:19 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

October 20, 2008

EP Wiki Working

I haven't been blogging as much because I am working on the Election Protection Wiki.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:05 PM | Comments (1) | Link Cosmos

September 28, 2008

I'm Back

A day of airplanes (Delta's a good airline) and now I am home. Jet-lagged, but home.

Did anything happen this week?


Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:18 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 25, 2008

CGI Post - What It Is

I have a post explaining what the Clinton Global initiative is about over at the Social Edge Blog.

But after McCain's moving speech this morning I am thinking about suspending my blogging.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:26 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 24, 2008

New CGI Posts

I have two new posts from the CGI, over at the Social Edge blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:45 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

Wednesday Morning CGI

I have my first post up from the Clinton Global Initiative. This is at the Social Edge blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:59 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 22, 2008

Travel Day

I'm flying across the country today. I don't know where and when I might have access to the Internets.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:53 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 20, 2008

Next Week I Blog From The Clinton Global Initiative

Next week I will be in New York to blog from the Clinton Global Initiative, as I have done from two previous CGIs. I'll be blogging for Social Edge. Take a look at my first post there, and stop in there to see what's up. I will also be updating Seeing the Forest.

This will be a VERY interesting event, as it takes place with so many world and business leaders attending during the current turmoil in the financial world -- and at the same time as the annual United Nations General Assembly.

I received this in my email:

The following are among those who have confirmed their attendance at the 2008 CGI Annual Meeting: Queen Rania Al-Abdullah (Jordan), Prime Minister Gordon Brown (UK), President Felipe Calderón Hinojosa (Mexico), President Leonel Fernández (Dominican Republic), President Armando Guebuza (Mozambique), President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (Liberia), President Paul Kagame (Rwanda), President Hamid Karzai (Afghanistan), President Shimon Peres (Israel), Prime Minister Kevin Rudd (Australia), President Jalal Talabani (Iraq), UN Secretary Genereal Ban Ki-moon, former Prime Minister Tony Blair (UK), former President Ernesto Zedillo (Mexico), former Vice President Al Gore (United States), Senator John McCain (Arizona), Senator Barack Obama (Illinois), Mayor Bill White (Houston), former Senator Bill Frist (Tennessee), Jacques Aigrain (Swiss Re), Muhammad Ali (Athletes for Hope), Bradbury Anderson (Best Buy), Lance Armstrong (Lance Armstrong Foundation), Craig Barrett (Intel), Maria Bartiromo (CNBC), Bono (ONE), Tom Brokaw (NBC News), Lester Brown (Earth Policy Institute), John Chambers (Cisco), Peter Chernin (News Corporation), Former Army General Wesley Clark (UCLA's Burkle Center for International Relations; Emergya Wind Technologies, BV), Ian Davis (McKinsey & Company), Paul Farmer (Partners in Health), Bill Gates, Bob Geldof, David Gergen (Harvard University), Neville Isdell (The Coca-Cola Company), Wyclef Jean (Yéle Haiti), Ashley Judd, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. (Riverkeeper Alliance; NRDC), Anne Lauvergeon (Areva), Wangari Maathai (Green Belt Movement, Kenya), Amre Moussa (League of Arab States), Dikembe Mutombo (Dikembe Mutombo Foundation), R.K. Pachauri (TERI), T. Boone Pickens (BP Capital), Victor Pinchuk (The Victor Pinchuk Foundation), Carl Pope (Sierra Club), Judith Rodin (Rockefeller Foundation), Robert Rubin (Citi), Joseph Saunders (Visa Inc), Josette Sheeran (World Food Programme), Dominique Strauss-Kahn (IMF), Barbara Streisand (The Streisand Foundation), Myron Ullman (J.C. Penny’s), Ann Veneman (UNICEF), and Muhammad Yunus (Grameen Bank).

Both United States presidential candidates will have a role in the Annual Meeting. Senator John McCain will deliver the opening remarks live at the “Integrated Solutions: water, food and energy” plenary session. Senator Barack Obama will address meeting participants via satellite.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:50 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 18, 2008

If you Twitter

If you Twitter my ID is dcjohnson, or http://twitter.com/dcjohnson. Seeing the Forest posts are automatically posted.

If you don't then you don't know what I am talking about.

ALSO, take a few minutes to explore all the stuff in the left and right columns here. There's a lot of great stuff. And let me know about any dead blog links in the blogroll. Also about blogs that should be in the blogroll...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:54 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 16, 2008

Seeing the Forest STUFF!

Take a look at the Seeing The Forest store!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:39 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

September 7, 2008

Reddit Button Question

Question for web developers. Why is the Reddit submit button below putting the wrong title in? Try a few of the Reddit buttons on posts below this one to see what I mean.

Here is the script I am using. NOTE I am substituting left parenthesis here for left brackets so the blog software doesn't think I mean to put the code here:

(script>reddit_url='($MTEntryPermalink archive_type="Individual"$>'(/script>
(script>reddit_title='($MTEntryTitle$>'(/script>
(script type="text/javascript" src="http://www.reddit.com/button.js?t=2">(/script>

WHY is it putting the title of the first post into every reddit button on this main page? Other buttons with similar code are NOT doing that and are putting the correct title in.

UPDATE - I have a clue. I changed the title of the Palin post, took out the hyphen, so it now reads "Palin Is Not Even On Fox or Rush". Yet several of the reddit buttons below still contain the OLD title. So this is a Reddit server-side error with their script I think.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:30 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 25, 2008

Twitter dcjohnson

If you know what Twitter is, I'm http://twitter.com/dcjohnson

If you don't know what Twitter is, never mind.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:56 AM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 23, 2008

Seeing the Forest on Facebook, Email, Etc.

You can sign up for seeing the Forest on Facebook by clicking the "badge" in the right column, or the one here:

While we're at it, you can also sign up to receive headlines via email. Look in the right column under "Subscribe."

While we're at it, you can email any post out to others by clicking where it says "Email this" at the end of that post.

While we're at it, if you like any post, click where it says Digg at the end of the post. Also where it says Reddit. The Thumb This Up is for StumbleUpon. And you can Bookmark on Delicious.

Where we're at it, take a look at that Buzz It button. This is a great one to use because it places the post on BuzzFlash.net. Go take a look at BuzzFlash.net! This is a place for progressives to get news and interesting article links. It's part of the BuzzFlash progressive news site.

While we're at it, that Spotlight link takes you to the Spotlight project.

The Spotlight Project enables the progressive blogging community (bloggers, commenters, and lurkers) to quickly and easily forward blog posts, along with their own comments, to nearly anyone in the media.
And, finally, there is that TIP JAR. The TIP JAR lets you donate to Seeing the Forest, to help keep the site going.

And always, always, always visit Seeing the Forest's advertisers. Also visit advertisers at other blogs. This helps all of the bloggers develop an ecosystem that will bring jobs, news, contributions to candidates and a progressive future to the contry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:29 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

Please Help Fund My Dem Convention Blogging

Next week I am heading to Denver to cover the Democratic Convention! I will be taking my camera, and just as I did four years ago I will be writing and posting pics for you all day, every day from the convention hall as well as the "Big Tent" that progressive bloggers are setting up.

Of course this involves expenses. I have to cover plane fare, lodging, meals, local transportation and my ticket into the Big Tent.

So I am asking for help to cover these expenses.

Please consider donating to help me cover the costs of this trip. I use PayPal to take donations, and they take credit cards. If you already have a PayPal account, just click. Otherwise after you click there is a simple signup procedure.

The PayPal button is down a ways in the left column and I am including it here for your convenience:



This is a secure online payment method which accepts major credit cards. Please help me meet expenses.


Thanks!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:18 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 17, 2008

Two Millionth Reader

Hey, I just noticed that Seeing the Forest had its two millionth reader.



Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:41 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 14, 2008

Great Blog

Go visit one of the great blogs out there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:10 PM | Comments (0) | Link Cosmos

August 9, 2008

Warning - Facebook Password-Stealing Scam

I received an email that tricked me into giving up my Facebook account and password. I figured it out and changed it immediately, but not I have to also change the password everywhere else I used that combination... I get an email that someone has written on my wall. I go to see what is written about me, and it is exactly like the Facebook login page...

Here is the email:

Janis wrote on your Wall:

"Somebody wrote something really funny in their blog about you. everybody see it here http://evangelinafofipap.blogspot.com" [THIS TAKES YOU TO THE SCAM LOGIN PAGE. DON'T ENTER ANYTHING HERE]

To see your Wall or to write on Janis's Wall, follow the link below:
http://www.facebook.com/n/?profile.php&id=XXXXXXX

Thanks,
The Facebook Team

Note - I have changed my password everywhere since this happened.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:27 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 5, 2008

On Democrats Reshaping Themselves As Republicans

I was thinking about how Obama squandered the enthusiasm and good faith of the activist "base" when he decided to "move to the right" to "appeal to the center." I am not quoting the Obama campaign, I am describing what happened to so many Democrats over the years who have helped move the goalposts ever rightward. In the face of an ongoing corporate propaganda campaign the "realists" and "pragmatists" have concluded they need to "go where the votes are" rather than fight back and work to counter that right-wing messaging and explain to the public why progressive values are better for them.

(NOTE - I think this is really more the fault of the funding base than the politicians. They just don't get it about building organizations capable of countering the messaging. And I am including everyone who is not giving all they can, even if that is only $20 a week, to progressive infrastructure organizations like Commonweal Institute and Speak Out California.)

All of this made me think of one of the great blog posts, from just after the 2002 elections. RENDEZVOUS WITH LUNACY

It begins with this picture:

PodvinAndMcAuliffe.jpg

From the post,

Why would voters choose a phony right wing Republican over the real thing? What made McAuliffe and Tom Daschle and Dick Gephardt believe that rural conservative whites would choose warmongering Democratic slaves to Corporate America over warmongering Republican slaves to Corporate America? When I want to vote for a warmongering corporate slave, I always vote Republican.

[. . .] I am not an astute observer of the political scene – I am merely an embittered observer. Yet despite being a rank political amateur, I am able to understand that the path to power does not consist of alienating people who are willing to vote for you in order to ingratiate yourself to people who are unwilling to vote for you. The current Democratic leadership just can't seem to comprehend this most important concept.

[. . .] Abandonment of stated principles and unilateral surrender have now officially been discredited as tactics for regaining Democratic control of Congress. It is time for new party leaders to try a different approach, like treating their voters with respect. Bush and the Republican base have a symbiotic relationship – he attends to their concerns, and they respond by faithfully supporting the G.O.P. This intriguing arrangement might well serve as a useful model for the Democratic Party.

It includes the classic wisdom,


When your supporters don’t vote for
you, then you



LOSE.


Oh please go read the whole post. Classic blogging.

And we bloggers out here in the non-beltway wilderness keep trying to explain this message over and over.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:57 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Daou Report is Back

Hey people - The Daou Report is back, with a different format. Go see - and bookmark it.


Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:25 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 24, 2008

Netroots Nation Report

This post originally appeared at, Speak Out California.

I thought our readers might like to get an insight into how last week's annual Netroots Nation convention went, and how it keeps the blogging world energized. Here is an inside look at the event. ('Netroots' stands for the online, networked, "bottom-up" grassroots of democracy.)

First of all, Austin is like a big, very very very very very very hot Santa Cruz. The daily high temperature was between 96 and 104 each day I was there. The convention facilities were great, and are located right downtown, surrounded by restaurants and the entertainment district. The hotel was next door to the convention center with several other hotels nearby. It's also near Austin's famous "bat bridge" from under which hundreds of thousands of bats emerge each day just after sunset.

Two thousand people attended the Thursday through Sunday event. The crowd and speakers were much more diverse than previous years. This is a gathering of all ages and demographic groups, centered around the progressive blogs.

Netroots Nation used to be called YearlyKos. This event sprang up from the large community that had grown up around the DailyKos website, but the gathering itself is a larger Netroots gathering not just associated with that particular site. Hence the change to Netroots Nation.

The first day, Thursday, was set aside for caucuses. There was a labor caucus which really wish I could have attended. There were a few state caucuses. There were caucuses like Native American and GLBTQ, and even a Geek caucus. There were caucuses for websites like MyDD and Firedoglake.

The evening Keynote on that first day was Governor Howard Dean, Chairman of the Democratic Party, introduced by General Wesley Clark.

Friday the panels and workshops started. Friday and Saturday were arranged with two panel slots before lunch and two after. Each of those slots had THIRTEEN different panels to choose from! And of course everyone wanted to attend at least tow, more likely four of those at any given time. For an idea of what one of these panels was link, here is the description of The Next President and the Law:

Fri, 07/18/2008 - 9:00am, Exhibit Hall 4

A new Democratic president will take office on January 20, 2009, facing a federal judiciary stacked with Republican appointees in 20 of the last 28 years, and a Department of Justice that has been more tied to the President’s policy interests than the impartial enforcement of law. What should the next president do with the courts? What should the priorities be for his attorney general? What legislative initiatives are needed to restore fair access to the courts?
PANELISTS: Cass Sunstein, John Dean, Adam Bonin, Michael Waldman

There were thirteen sessions like this to choose from at 9am, then thirteen more at 10:30am. Then for lunch Markos of DailyKos and former Senator Harold Ford, now head of the right-leaning DLC, had a discussion on stage. I wrote about this at my personal blog, in the post, Harold Ford at Netroots Nation on FISA:
Harold Ford and Markos held a discussion on stage at lunch here at Netroots Nation. I didn't catch all of it, but at one point Ford was talking about FISA and telecom immunity, along the lines of "If you have a company, and the government comes to you and says 'If you do this for us it will help national security' then what can you say?"

I'll tell you what you can say. You can say, "DO YOU HAVE A WARRANT?"

Then two more groups of thirteen panels at 1:30pm and 3pm, with an evening "Netroots Candidates Event" where what seemed to be fifty candidates for office around the country who the netroots are supporting were introduced. (I spotted Pete McCloskey at this event. McCloskey was a California Congressman who ran against Richard Nixon in the 1972 Republican primaries, and who co-founded Earth Day.)

And then there were the parties... Parties and parties. There were lots of parties. And there were parties.

Saturday kicked off with "Ask the Speaker". Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was on stage taking questions that had been solicited in advance from blogs all around the web, as well as live questions from people attending. Then there was a surprise. One of the questions that came over the speakers was from Al Gore! And Gore walked onto the stage to give a brief talk about climate change and the nature of our politics, and took questions as well as Speaker Pelosi.

Then more panels ... The lunch keynote was Lawrence Lessig who talked about the destructive nature of money in politics -- whenever money is involved you can't trust the results, just like with medical research funded by pharmaceutical companies. So of course you can't trust money in politics.

Then more panels. I put on a workshop titled, "Blogging and the New Green Economy," described as follows,

This workshop will discuss how bloggers can support and organize around the efforts of environmental justice activists, union leaders and city government officials to help create a new green economy.
(Last year I put on two major sessions and participated in three other panels, and the year before i was also involved with several. So just doing this one was a relief.)

Saturday wrapped up with a keynote speech by Rep. Donna Edwards. This is significant because the Netroots supported Edwards in a primary race against another Democrat who was supporting a corporate agenda. She won, and it has sent a signal to other Democrats that they can start to change their behavior. And now the SEIU and others are planning to run at least ten primary challenges in the next round of Congressional elections. This is a very important development which I wrote about in my post SEIU's Accountability Project -- Making Politicians Do The Right Thing. I wrote,

First, it finally gives politicians whose hearts are with us a reason to vote with us. Second, it tells politicians who don't agree with a progressive agenda (of reducing corporate power over our lives and restoring democracy to the people) that their time is past, that we will run candidates against them in the primaries and these candidates will have strong support.
Then there were parties. And more parties. Lots of parties.

And parties.

Finally, Sunday began with a multi-faith service led by "Pastor Dan" who posts at the DailyKos-associated blog Street Prophets. Following that the keynote speaker Van Jones was introduced by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom. Newsom was great but Van Jones gave a memorable talk that will be available in video online soon.

A tremendous amount of networking happens at this event. I once called it the largest gathering of people who know each other but have never met. It is events like this one and the Take Back America conference where a new progressive movement is being built. One this that was significant this year was the exhibits, where organizations involved with the Netroots have booths to show off what they are up to. There were quite a number of these this year, which shows that an ecosystem is starting to develop.

Someone caught a photo of me speaking to the California Caucus:

DJ_CA_Caucus.jpg

(That's a really bad shot of CA-46 Congressional candidate Debra Cook in the front.)

There are several blogs (here, here) and diaries at DailyKos with pictures, (here, here, here, here), and a Flickr album I located.

Ckick through to Speak Out California to join our discussion there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 16, 2008

Six Years!

I was at the Burnt Orange Report party at Netroots Nation, and realized that today is the sixth anniversary of this blog!

First post: Ralph Nader is a Scab

In the union movement we learned the hard way that the only way to fight the moneyed interests is to stick together. It's called SOLIDARITY. It's what "union" MEANS.

When unions are in a fight the members stick together, and those crossing the lines are called "scabs".

In the 2000 election it was the usual fragile Democratic coalition fighting the usual moneyed interests. Ralph Nader broke the solidarity, divided the coalition, and lost us the election. Ralph Nader is a scab.

When you're there,. scroll up and look at more of that first day and the first few days. From day two: Seeing the forest,
Recent polls show that the public is blaming Clinton for the business scandals, and Bush's popularity remains astronomical. That's a tree.

Let's see if we can see the forest. Look back to the 2000 election. Step back and look at the candidates. The Democrat's candidate was a well respected, well liked, extremely experienced, Vietnam vet, former seminary student, character beyond reproach, faithfully married family man, foreign policy expert, with many accomplishments including being the person in the Congress most responsible for advancing the Internet... The Republicans ran a foul-mouthed thoroughly inexperienced scandal-ridden (Harken oil, Rangers stadium, recipient of bribes directed at his father) failed businessman, continuously bailed out of jams by his father's connections, draft-dodger (worse, he got into the Nat. Guard through connections and then played hooky!), former drunk, probable drug-user, kids constantly in trouble, with a campaign entirely financed by large corporations obviously looking for favors.

But by election time the only issue was “character”, and the character in question was the Democratic candidate’s! That's the forest.

Issues like the "Love Canal story" and "I invented the Internet" were trees. The forest was how they pulled it off - the smears, the propaganda blitz, the way they spread their message and the way people hear messages these days.

With this weblog I'll be writing about this issue, seeing the forest for the trees.

The more things change...

Note - any typos are due to burnt orange party.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:48 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Travel Day

I'm flying to Austin this morning to attend Netroots Nation so probably won't be posting. Maybe tonite.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 3, 2008

The Campaign To Improve Assisted Living

Next week I'll be writing about The Campaign To Improve Assisted Living.

To get you ready, here's your homework assignment.

First, read this: Open Left:: Socially Irresponsible Investing

Then go to The Campaign To Improve Assisted Living and study up.

OK, go and get ready for this one. You can have tomorrow off but you are expected to work over the weekend.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:47 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 23, 2008

Speak Out California Is Back Up And Running!

This post originally appeared at Speak Out California.

One day your website is yours, and the next day it is someone else's. Organizations, businesses and regular people are at the mercy of a confusing deregulated system.

A little over a week ago the Speak Out California website suddenly disappeared, and viewers instead saw a website full of advertisements.

We had no way of even knowing what had happened. It was just a surprise. One day typing "speakoutca.org" into a web browser took viewers to our website, the next day it took viewers to an ad site that someone else managed.

Some of us are more sophisticated and internet-savvy than most citizens so we were eventually able to track down some information. I'm not going into details here, except to say that no one at Speak Out California received any notice that this was going to happen. It took several days to even track down where the domain name (this is what internet addresses like speakoutca.org are called) had been registered, who had registered it, and contact info for the registrar. Then it took several more days to restore the domain name to us and get it working again.

Here's the thing: the only way we were able to get this name back and get the site operating again is because some of us are much more internet-connected than most people. Most people would have no idea where to even start to look for information and help solving a problem like this.

This is certainly not an uncommon problem. My wife had a business named Dancing Woman Designs with a website at dancingwomandesigns.com, and then one day she didn't. She received no notice, nothing. It was just there one day and gone the next and if she wanted it back it was going to cost her. It was going to cost her a lot. And so she doesn't have dancingwomandesigns.com anymore and that address takes you to an ad site. A whole business that took years to get going and build is history now. It was wiped out in a minute because someone was able to get the web name.

A larger business is more likely to have the resources to hire the necessary experts to fight something like this. But it can be an expensive proposition and it can take time.

This is the difference between regulation and deregulation. Regulations protect regular people. Deregulation enables and protects scammers, schemers, and cons. The Internet is largely unregulated and is full of scammers, schemers and cons. Most of the businesses and organizations on the internet are good, honest, credible and legitimate but regular people are also left completely at the mercy of numerous cons, scams, schemes and rip-offs and the burden is on us to find a way to tell the difference.

We got Speak Out California back up and running. It only took us a week and a little money. But we are sophisticated, internet-savvy and connected -- and lucky. Hmm ... maybe some new legislation is warranted.

Click through to Speak Out California

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 20, 2008

Down With Tyranny

Have you been to the great site DownWithTyranny! lately?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:36 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 9, 2008

Today's Obama Smear Attempt -- See Update

Here's one of the ways the right's smear machine works. Far-right blogs post something. Then a site higher up their food chain picks it up, like NewsMax, CNSNews, WorldNetDaily or Politico. Then the Drudge Report or Moon's Washington Times gets it from there and spreads the story further. Somewhere in there Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity talks about it on the air. Finally the corporate media picks it up and uses the excuse that "the story is circulating."

Here's an example today. "Someone" posted an anti-semitic comment at the Obama blog. (See if you can guess who posted a comment that a right-wing blog knew about a few minutes later.) A few minutes later the hate site Little Green Footballs wrote a post saying that the Obama blog says so-and-so. (If you don't know about this site, spend a few minutes there and you'll get the picture. No, it is not a parody of right-wing nuttiness.) Then dozens of far-right-wing sites quickly echoed the "story." It rapidly turns into a great big right-wing hissy fit.

Soon the right's Politico has picked it up. (Which shows they're spending time reading hate sites.) And then Rush Limbaugh talked about it on his show.

You see, someone (guess who) leaving a comment at the Obama site proves that Obama is anti-semitic. You'll be hearing about it from every direction very soon.

Here is what Politico wrote:

Little Green Footballs finds some eyebrow-raisin stuff on Obama's site with the search term "Jewish Lobby." Of course, it's not fair to hold Obama responsible for the occasional crazy post. But it seems reasonable to try to characterize the community, something I haven't seen done, and it's interesting to see what gets taken down and what doesn't -- inevitably a community and moderator choice.
So bloggers - watch out. Right-wingers are posting vile comments at blogs, and then claiming that blog's readers are saying vile things.

Update - Little Green Footballs is sending people over here to saturate us with nasty comments. This one is an example of what to expect from that site (And I do have the IP address proving who it came from): "It's pretty obvious that Davey is so blind queer for 'the boy with the
pickaninny dick' that he is willing to tell any lie necessary 'for the
cause'...even if it's laughably false on its face...maybe he's bucking to
be Barky's personal bitch faggot....if so,he's doing a good job of it"

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:39 PM | Comments (183) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 29, 2008

Democratic Convention Credentials

I just found out I have credentials to cover the Democratic Convention in Denver this summer.

In 2004 I was the first person ever to post a picture of his dog from a national convention. What will I do this time?

In this post I have a picture of "reporters covering reporters interviewing bloggers while bloggers interview the reporters."

Balloon drop.

(It's the old Blogger site so you have to wait and wait while it loads and then scrolls to the right post...)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

skippy Calls For Boycott Of Dunkin Donuts For Appeasing Right-Wing

Right-wing bloggers recently went nuts because a woman in a Dunkin Donuts ad wore a scarf that, if put on her head, might look like a Muslim woman with a scarf on her head. (No, I'm not kidding.) The called for a boycott of Dunkin Donuts.

Dunkin Donuts promptly gave in and canceled the ads. By doing so they demeaned women who wear scarves, not to mention supporting the right-wing blogger claims that a woman wearing a scarf (not even on her head) is a terrorist.

See actual photos here: skippy the bush kangaroo: time to stop buying the donuts - an action alert!,

we say, what's good for the batshit insane is good for the logical.

here's dunkin' donuts contact form. why not email them and let them know that you will no longer be buying their donuts or coffee or any product because their actions, at worst, in effect condemn all who wear scarves, and at best, are just plain looney?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:32 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 19, 2008

Post A Sign

"If you just had one person in every city doing what I do you wouldn't be able to drive anywhere without seeing a protest against the war."

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:13 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 11, 2008

Go Visit

Have you been to BAGnewsNotes lately? What a great site!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 18, 2008

Shame

This diary at MyDD, calling Michelle Obama a "welfare queen" is actually on the site's recommended list: MyDD :: Michelle Obama: "Give Us Something Here". This is beyond outrageous and must be condemned, rejected, repudiated and any other words you can find. It shames all of us.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:15 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 15, 2008

Overnighter

I'm flying overnight to DC for next week's Take Back America conference. Maybe see you there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 5, 2008

Let's Have A Comment War

Note - This is an insider post, for people who spend a lot of time at other blog sites. If you don't spend a lot of time at other blogs, especially reading the comments, you won't get this and should iignore it. I apologize.

Let's have a war in the comments here. The vote count in the Democratic primaries so far is:
Clinton 13,521,832
Obama 13,497,175

OK, go at it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:25 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 3, 2008

Been Away

A sudden urgent job came up that I have been working on about 20 hours a day so posting here has been light. Don't worry I'm not dead. More to come...

Meanwhile for tomorrow's primary, take a look at a couple of grassroots video sites, Hillary Speaks For Me and YouBama.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:13 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 4, 2008

Make Them Accountable

Have you visited Make Them Accountable lately?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:32 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 7, 2008

New - Sustain newsladder

The Sustain newsladder is the newest addition to the Newsladder family. This newsladder focuses on sustainability, environment, ecology, etc. Go take a look.

The way the newsladders work is you sign up, then add and recommend stories. The top recommended stories appear in the newsladder feeds - there are a few in the right column here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:45 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 6, 2008

Comments

Comments MIGHT be working. Please leave a comment and we'll find out.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:29 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 27, 2007

Best of 2007

As I wrote earlier, Jon Swift put together a roundup of best blog posts of 2007 from a number of bloggers. So I looked through all of my 2007 posts and picked out a few.

It turns out that I co-wrote the one I submitted to Jon, The Boy Who Cried Terror, with James Boyce. Oops.

So here is a collection of the Seeing the Forest Best of 2007, not in any order:

Did Spitting 'Victim' from DC Protest Cry Wolf?

If Iran And Islamofascists Are A Threat: What Bush Must Do.

How the “Pelosi 757” Lie Was Spread.

The Media Does Not Act In The Public Interest.

The Reach Of Progressive Blogs.

While Progressives Talk To Each Other, Conservatives Talk To The Public.

Five Years of Seeing the Forest.

The First Problem in Iraq is BUSH.

Why Don't Democrats Have "Courage?"

A Bad Ad In A Teachable Moment.

What I Expect In 2008.

All of the Housing Bubble Post archives are here.

And of course everything I wrote with James Boyce, which is archived at Smoking Politics.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:24 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Best Blog Posts Of 2007

Jon Swift has a roundup of best blog posts of 2007. I recommend taking a look: Jon Swift: Best Blog Posts of 2007 (Chosen by the Bloggers Themselves).

Submitting something prompted me to look at the last year's blog posts, and I'll put up my own Best Of Seeing the Forest 2007 soon.

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December 23, 2007

Happy Holidays

Espresso left us this year, but now she has all the muffins she could want.

Buddy still has to suffer indignities...

Happy Holidays from the Johnsons!

Here is last year's card.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:38 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 21, 2007

How To Reform The Democratic Party

Every Democrat should read this: Daily Kos: This is it. This is the way to change our party,

As we've learned this year, Democrats in DC are more afraid of David Broder, Joe Klein, and Mr. 24%, than they are of their constituents. They are more concerned with Beltway opinion than they are with the national consensus. They are happier dealing with lobbyists than they are dealing with real people. They are more concerned with avoiding criticism than they are of delivering campaign promises.

So what can we do about it?

[. . .] Well, we have one tool at our disposal, our only way to influence the behavior of our elected officials:

We can primary them.

There are two specific primaries that we - the progressive movement - have candidates running in right now. Go read the post and learn what you can do.

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December 11, 2007

Comments

I tried again... Because of problems with the authentication system I changed the commenting system to make it easier to just leave a comment. And WHAM, this morning I had to clear out almost 275 junk comments, mostly for pharmaceuticals and porn.

So the authentication system is back. Sorry. Blame the spammers.

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December 6, 2007

Newsladder News and Newsladder Widgets

The Newsladders are a project to help the progressive blog community reach a wider audience. The Newsladders give readers a quick look at the top things being discussed on the progressive blogs at any given moment.

Newsladder News

I have some Newsladder widgets over in the right column. Click the title at the top to go to the Newsladder, or the headline to go straight to the story.

Here is how the Newsladders work:
The Newsladders give you a quick look at what is going on in the progressive blogging community. Each Newsladder is an aggregator of current blog headlines on a given topic. Users, bloggers and editors add stories, and also recommend them. Stories rise up in rank based on recommendations and click-throughs. Daily top-ten lists will be mailed to relevant editors and other opinion/policy leaders after the Newsladders develop. This helps us with blog outreach, bringing in new readers. And progressive bloggers get new traffic as people discover this resource and click through to read the stories. (For example, the Burma Newsladder is already able to generate new traffic of up to hundreds of click-throughs per day.)

Take a look at California Newsladder, Iraq Newsladder, Our Troops Newsladder, and, of course, never forget that there is a Burma Newsladder. And while you are there, sign up and then recommend posts that you think should rise up in the rankings. You can also submit posts.

Bloggers - you can add Newsladder widgets to your own blogs now. They list the top stories at a given Newsladder. To get the code for a given Newsladder's widget, go to the bottom of that Newsladder page and click the Tools link. (You can also get the LadderUp tool there to make it easy to add posts to that Newsladder.)

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December 5, 2007

Nerd Of The Week - The Blogger Nerd

I'm in it in a few places, including in the BlogTalkRadio booth as well as interviewing Markos on the show (I'm asking the questions, he's wearing the earphones), the Smelling the Coffee blog screen, and talking.

And I'm not wearing any pants.

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December 3, 2007

Taylor Marsh

Do you read Democrat Taylor Marsh often enough?

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November 9, 2007

California Newsladder Coming Soon

Coming soon: California Newsladder, related to Burma Newsladder Our Troops newsladder, Iraq Newsladder, and there are other newsladders coming.

You can see what stories are interesting or important to lots of people, and click through the headlines to the sites. Once you have signed up you can submit headlines and recommend the stories that you see there. The stories that more people click through or recommend rise up the ladder.

Under "tools" you can get a "LaderUp" tool that lets you just click to submit a post you are looking at on any blog or news site.

If you are a blogger submit your best posts so others will see them, and increase your own traffic.

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October 20, 2007

Newsladder For Our Troops

Another new Newsladder: Ourtroops.newsladder.net

Do you know anyone serving, or family & friends of anyone serving? Send them over.

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October 19, 2007

California Newsladder Preview

I'm working with a project that will be launch in a few weeks, called California Newsladder. California Newsladder is a news aggregator for progressive California blogs and news sites.

It is running now, so go take a look. Here is what it is about: If you have signed up, you can add links to stories that you think are important or interesting. If you click a link you can read the entire story at the site where it came from.

You can also recommend links that you see there. As the stories are recommended they climb up the ladder. After Newsladder's launch, each day the top ten stories be sent to legislators and their aides, reporters and editors and TV and radio stations around the state. This will help expand the reach of progressive blogs and news sites like California Progress Report and Calitics.

California Newsladder is part of the system that also has Burma Newsladder and some new sites coming up.

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October 16, 2007

California Newsladder

Starting up soon - California Newsladder. Take a look, open an account. If you open an account you can submit and recommend stories that are about California.

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October 9, 2007

RW Bloggers and Conservative Philanthropy

Here is an interesting post: The Triumph of Conservative Philanthropy: <em>Powerlineblog</em> and conservative philanthropy,

Every now and then you get a glimpse of where the true power is over at Powerlineblog. Today Scott Johnson has a post up titled "Coming attractions," that publicizes two upcoming conservative movement events.
The post looks at how right-wing think tanks, celebrities and money work together, the whole while supporting their bloggers and getting their message out to their blogosphere.
In their own way the conservatives have setup an institutional supply-side structure for getting their message out. First they create and subsidize hundreds of institutions like Claremont and CAE; next they find reliable Republicans to staff them. These institutions then create content for media dissemination, which is taken care of by blogs like Powerline and columnists like Kersten.
But on OUR "side" the House and Senate just voted to condemn MoveOn, with many so-called "Democrats" voting to do that. And there is no progressive infrastructure ecosystem to support our activists, thinkers, writers and organizers.

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October 4, 2007

Burma Newsladder

Today the bloggers are promoting awareness of the events in Burma. Take a look at Burma.newsladder.net for headlines.

You can participate in Burma Newsladder. Join up, submit stories that you see, vote on the ranking of stories, and tell others.

You can go to the page to submit stories, but there is aneasier way. At the bottom of the page click "Tools" and get the "LadderUp" tool that makes it very easy to submit a story you are currently reading on any web page.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:36 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 1, 2007

Introducing The Burma NewsLadder

The situation in Burma is tragic and the result of decades of horrific military rule that has reduced one of the most beautiful places on earth to a tragic ruin where monks in robes flee from soldiers with Chinese-made automatic weapons.

One of the tragedies of the situation is despite the efforts of groups who have been trying to expose the situation on the ground in Burma. Groups like WITNESS and US Campaign For Burma have been fighting against the apathy that is our current corporate media culture.

If Britney was driving a young monk without a seatbelt, there would be a chance to get some coverage but sadly, young monks are smarter than that.

If Anna Nicole Smith's baby's father was one of the generals, well, they would be building permanent tv stations.

NewsLadder is something that I have been working on for the better part of the year. Actually, longer. In my experience with the Huffington Post, and watching the progressive movement grow and change how we communicate and advocate, I am very convinced of not only the need, but the power of, the concept of aggregation online.

Here, with the Burma NewsLadder, and as you will see, this is the first of many community / state ladders we will be launching, all the news, from all around the world will be aggregated on the ladder.

Links / Posts / Video will all be voted up or down, by both a broader public - all visitors can sign in - but also by a group of editors - you can see news as ranked by editors, by all visitors, by what's new, however you like.

NewsLadder will work for the bloggers because it will drive traffic to their sites. You can't read the posts on NewsLadder, you can just see the links and the comments and the rankings of the posts. All bloggers can post links to their sites, and other people's sites too. The circle of traffic creates energy, and more traffic. It also puts a blog post on equal basis with a NYTimes newspaper article. All news is created equal on NewsLadder. The good moves up, the bad news go down, regardless of source.

NewsLadder should also be helpful to bloggers as a resource because it lets them stay on top of an issue that any given NewsLadder is dedicated to: in this case, we will have, hopefully, hundreds of people posting and linking to and looking for the best stories on the situation in Burma.

Ironically, we will then have "democracy" in action because everyone can vote stories up or down, so the best stories, the best writing, the best video, the best articles, the best blog posts move up the ladder.

Anyone can post a link. Anyone can vote something up or down.

I also believe that NewsLadder will work for readers because there is a single site with the best thinking and writing of a community, sorted not only by editors, but also by their votes and comments. Close to 40% of all folks voting Democratic last fall still don't go to blogs. A lot of time, it's because they don't know where to go. NewsLadder will help with that.

It will work for the corporate media because they can take a short cut and go to one site and see what's up. Or someone running for office, they can take the pulse of the community by stopping by.

But it will only work if people like you go post, add comments and bring attention to

So why Burma?

Well, the tragedy is that, perhaps, with more interest and more focus. Perhaps with a place for everyone interested in Burma to gather. Perhaps with a site like the Burma.Newsladder, we would have been able to draw more attention to the situation earlier, rather than later.

So please, take a moment and swing by www.burma.newsladder.net.

It still is in development, still a few bugs here and there. (email me anything you run into if you can at jamescannonboyce@gmail.com)

Sign up, sign in, add your comments and post / link to anything you wish. Editor's Choice is ranked by Editor Recommends (There will be more editors added to Burma NewsLadder over the coming days, if you know anyone, send them my way.)

What's Up is ranked according to comments, reads and a complicated formula that Trei understands. What's New, that's easy, that's the latest stuff added. You can search by tags, by Editors and more.

Finally, everything aggregates up into the primary NewsLadder. My goal is make this the ranking system of the community online. I have done what I can over the past 24 months to help elevate and integrate the community; I hope this helps.

And yes, there will be advertising and in the future, hopefully profits, 10% of the profits from each ladder will be donated back into the community the ladder serves. More if I can afford it.

Thanks for reading. Thanks for visiting. Thanks for the help. And there's one more reason, why Burma?

My father was in the State Department in Burma in the 1950s after he graduated from the Fletcher School. He got kicked out by the Communists and wasn't allowed back in the country until 1984. While he made it back to his beloved Burma, he never made it home from Boston from that trip. So I am trying to do what I can to help the country and a people he loved so much.

I appreciate comments and suggestions and if there is a NewsLadder you would like to edit or help with, please email me. California is in soft launch right now, while Texas, Veterans, Iraq, Green, Massachusetts and Virginia are all in development, but we could use more help.

Peace.

James

(Hat tips for their help to: Nate Wilcox, Lowell Feld, Dave Johnson of this great site who has been my partner on the side of good in many battles already, Trei, Pablo, Jerome, Seth, Owen, Ned, Joe, Julie, Arianna, and many more....)

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September 26, 2007

Where I Am

I am in New York blogging for Social Edge from the 2007 Clinton Global Initiative.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 25, 2007

2007 Clinton Global Initiative

I am in New York where I will be blogging, beginning tomorrow, from the 2007 Clinton Global Initiative. I will be blogging for Social Edge, and you can read my posts there. I have an introductory post up already - and last year's posts are still up. I'll be cross-posting some of my posts here, but visit the Social Edge blog for the rest.

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September 9, 2007

skippy on the big bloggers

skippy writes about "big blx blogs" linking to each others in skippy the bush kangaroo: paging mr. principle...mr. peter principle, you're wanted at the big box blogs

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September 6, 2007

Noon Comments from Atlanta

Remember that I am posting more frequently over at the Social Edge blog.

Some comments from the Carter Center Human Rights Conference:

Earlier when UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour was just about to speak, her phone rang. So there she is sitting next to Jimmy Carter who just spoke, looks at her phone and it's Koffi Annan. She took the call, excused herself, and went out of the room with her phone to her ear. She came back a few minutes later and spoke.

At lunch I asked her what he said, but she said she couldn't tell me.

Advice to travelers: if you use your cell phone as a backup alarm clock, remember to turn the ringer back on. I had it on vibrate but somehow woke up fifteen minutes before the bus. I made it.

Rosalyn Carter is still as beautiful as ever.

If you ever have lunch with Jimmy Carter, be sure to try the peach cobbler.

It isn't the famous Presidential White House coffee. Maybe I'll send down some Peet's when I get back.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:22 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

From The Human Rights Conference

So I'm standing around in the lobby, drinking a coffee, waiting for things to start, and Jimmy Carter wanders over to say Hi...

I always wanted to say that.

I'm at the opening session of the 2007 Human Rights Defenders Forum, Faith and Freedom Conference, and President Carter is being introduced. I'll try to summarize what he is saying:

DJ_Carter.jpg

The rest is over at the Social Edge Blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:05 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 5, 2007

Blogging from the 2007 Human Rights Defenders Policy Forum

I am at the Carter Center in Atlanta to observe the 2007 Human Rights Defenders Policy Forum. The Carter Center brings together leaders of the world’s human rights effort for discussions to try to find policy solutions that can help lessen the problem of human rights violations and atrocities that occur again and again in the world. In the next couple of days former President Jimmy Carter will be speaking, as will Louise Arbour, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Karin Ryan, Director of the Carter Center’s Human Rights Program writes,

“Why does the international community fail again and again to respond to these crises before they take on catastrophic dimensions?”
The ongoing Human Rights Defenders Policy Forums attempt to answer that question and find solutions.

This year’s conference brings together human rights defenders of different faiths, to discuss ways that the common traditions of faith in the struggle for human dignity can be utilized to provide new channels for approaching these problems. Karin again,

“What might be accomplished if the reawakening of faith that is taking place throughout the globe were accompanied by a heightened commitment to put a stop to human rights violations in many places where they are ignored?”

So I find myself in Atlanta to observe and write about this conference. Today's discussions are off the record as the participants work to find common areas to discuss in the public conference of the next two days. This gives me a chance to write about what it is like to be here.

What is it like? The Carter Center is a very nice facility, with excellent conference amenities. It includes the Jimmy Carter Library and Museum. (The museum includes a replica of the Oval Office and I hope I get a chance to sneak over and see it. I'll let you know.) The conference takes place in an auditorium, with a horseshoe-shaped table for the approx. twenty international Human Rights Defender participants and ten or so organizational representatives. (There will be more over the next couple of days.) There are two rows of observer tables at the edges of the room, which is where I am. I have an earpiece for translation as people speak if needed. During the coffee break I spoke to a man who showed me the places where agents of his government cut him with a machete.

And that is what my first day as an observer is like. I flew here from California and landed in a nice airport. I am staying in a nice hotel. I am typing on a computer in the hallway of a very nice conference center. I carry in my head what is probably a widely-shared image of an ideal modern, civil life. I might not live that life (or even want to or think it is sustainable) but I feel that many of us reading this probably do share the image, because you are probably reading it on a computer in a modern society. In this Ideal Modern Life we have our jobs. We drive around in cars and go to shops. We consume and have our brand attachments. We watch TV shows and are entertained. We have houses and gardens. And somewhere else in the world these things are happening.

It is the 21st century and these things are not only happening, but the world's ability to confront such problems seems to be diminishing. The forces of racial, religious, national, ethnic, ideological, economic and environmental division seem to be gaining the upper hand. This is a conference where Human Rights Defenders struggle to find ways to help keep them from continuing to happen. The people here come from places where these things happen, but part of their message is that these things can happen when the world does not make it enough of a priority to keep them from happening.

Over the next two days I will be blogging at the Skoll Foundation's Social Edge blog, and cross-posted at the conference's own blog. I invite you to drop in. I'll post summaries here as well, when I can, but mostly I'll be posting there.

Blogging is a conversation. It is interactive. So please join this discussion and leave comments here - or better, leave them over at the Social Edge blog as the conference unfolds.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:16 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 4, 2007

This Week From The Carter Center

Today I am flying to Atlanta to blog this week from the Carter Center's 2007 Human Rights Defenders Policy Forum

Human rights activists from all continents are meeting with leaders of faith communities and policymakers to discuss how we can overcome inaction in the face of human rights violations before they escalate into mass crimes.

I will be blogging for Social Edge, at this link and occasional updates here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 26, 2007

Who Is Our Economy FOR, Anyway?

THIS looks interesting!

THE "WHAT'S THE ECONOMY FOR, ANYWAY? CONFERENCE!!!

What’s the economy for, anyway? Is it just about having the biggest GDP or the highest Dow Jones Average? Or is it about providing for a healthy, happy, fair and sustainable society? If you think quality of life matters, and wonder how the United States compares to other countries when it comes to providing for its people, then the WHAT’S THE ECONOMY FOR, ANYWAY? conference is for you!

Dozens of prominent experts and activists will offers parts of the answer to the big question and offer out-of-the-box ideas about what we can do to make our economy serve us instead of vice-versa. Three tracks include FINDING HAPPINESS, SEEKING JUSTICE and SECURING SUSTAINABILITY.


SOMEONE has been reading Seeing the Forest, no?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:25 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 25, 2007

Bloggers Suck Up To Dems - Trying To Destroy Dems

Booman is giggling over this, and it is pretty funny.

There is something strange going on in the progressive blogosphere these days: instead of uniting against Republicans, progressive bloggers like Matt Stoller have decided to declare war on every Democrat who they consider not to be progressive (read anti-war) enough. Seemingly frustrated that there are actually Democratic Congressmen that do not necessarily always vote along party lines - but make up their own minds - they have decided to ask their readers to make profiles of so-called “Bush Dogs” (Blue Dogs and New Democrats) as to be able to target them in the coming years, and to replace them with progressive, left-wing Republicans.

... Once one pays attention to what is happening, one also sees that they are targeting Hillary Clinton. Obviously not to replace her, but instead to make sure that she does not win the nomination. Besides attacking Hillary straight on, the left-wingers of the Daily Kos, Open Left and MyDD, also seem to have declared Bill Clinton their enemy. Their new best buddy? Al Franken.

[. . .] Make no mistake about it however: once these people get their way regarding Iraq, they will target politicians who they deem not progressive enough on other issues.

And so, slowly but surely, these people are destroying the Democratic Party. The average American does not favor truly progressive policies nor does the average American think highly of the anti-war crowd (led by Kos and Stoller). They might have their fair share of groupies, but so did other totalitarians in the past. These people are totalitarians because they do not accept any dissent.

etc. etc.

Except usually I hear complaints that the progressive bloggers have sold out to "The Democrats" whatever that means.

MoveOn and many of the leading left-wing blogs have become nothing but appendages of the Democratic party

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 18, 2007

Dave on TV

During YearlyKos I did a local interview for a Chicago ABC station.

Go read and see the video.

P.S. Actually, it was ME who said YearlyKos is the largest gathering of people who know each other but have never seen each other. I said that to the reporter about last year's YearlyKos.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:16 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 5, 2007

YearlyKos

At the YearlyKos Blogger Brunch someone in the audience said something worth quoting:

This is a place where you meet your best friends for the first time.
Another quote, about the politicians,
This year they're treating us like we thought of ourselves last year.

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August 2, 2007

James' Day at YearlyKos

This is hilarious: Daily Kos: My Day At YearlyKos With Radical Hate Mongers.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:15 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

YearlyKos Day 1

I woke up about 6 local time (4 my time) so I could get registered and scope out the convention center and the room for my first panel, titled Connecting Major Donors to the Netroots. Right away it's clear that this pace is vast. YealryKos is in a new convention center attached to a Hyatt hotel, part of the McCormick covention center complex. (The cab driver told me that driving around the perimeter of the whole complex is seven miles. Is this true?)

The registration was set up, but my first panel was upstairs somewhere, and no one I talked to knew how to get there. Eventually I found it, and it really was about a quarter mile from registration. The air condition was not on yet, and it was HOT, even at 7am. But the projector was set up and the room was laid out.

Having a panel at 8am on the first day of a conference is not a recipe for high attendance, so I had located and raised money to hire a camera and operator so we can get this onto the web later. He showed up at 7:30, and got set up, but we could not locate a way to plug into the sound system and the AV person we called never showed up The operator had to use the camera's microphone so the sound probably won't be great when you hear it.

The panel started relatively on time and went very well. I will put my opening remarks in a separate post. I found out last night that Joe Trippi could not make it to my second panel, Creating a Culture of Grassroots Giving, and asked Patrick O'Heffernan, Commonweal Institute Senior Fellow, to fill in. He did a great job. Colin Bishop, a fundraiser, also joined at the last minute and did well. That panel went really well.

Walking around YearlyKos this year is very different from last year. Last year it was a mass of faces that few recognized - I described it as the largest gathering of people who knew each other but had never seen each other. This year is was lots and lots of familiar faces. Lots of people saying hi.

Today was really "workshop" day. The real opening of YearlyKos was tonite, with Howard Dean gicing the opening keynote. He was, of course, great. He announced a new voting iitiative by the Democratic Party, working with every single county in America, down the the precinct level, to identify voting problems NOW, for the 2008 election, and starting to solve them now. Right down to which precincts do not get enough voting machines.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:27 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Made It to Chicago

Posting to let you know that I made it to Chicago, my first two panels went well this morning and the wireless at YearlyKos works.

YearlyKos is sharing the hotel convention facilities with a Shriner convention!!! Yee-HAAA!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 1, 2007

The American Aviation System No Longer Functions

After sitting in San Jose for a few hours, then missing my connection in Las Vegas while the plane sat out on the tarmac... I am stuck in Las Vegas. maybe I'll get out in a few hours and arrive for YearlyKos in the middle of the night.

Sheesh. Las Vegas has free wireless, so I might rant more later...

Oh yeah, corporate jets don't have to pay to use the air traffic control system, but commercial jet passengers DO.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:24 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Typical

Flight problems... takeoff delayed over an hour. Might (probably will) miss my connection. Etc.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:31 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Travel Day

OK, I am off to Chicago. Here is what I will be doing.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:50 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 30, 2007

YearlyKos

I will be leaving Wednesday for Chicago to attend YearlyKos.

Thursday at 8am I am moderating a session titled Connecting Major Donors to the Netroots. The panelists are:
Chris Bowers
Lisa Seitz Gruwell
Michael Lux
Rob Stein of Democracy Alliance, who will give his famous (in certain circles) presentation on the right's infrastructure and funding.

At 9:30 I am moderating a session titled Creating a Culture of Grassroots Giving. The panelists are:
Joe Rospars, now of the Obama for America campaign
Joe Trippi, now of the Edwards for President campaign
Shai Sachs of MyDD

I am also a panelist at the following sessions:

Reaching the Public
Think Tank Resources for Bloggers
Smoking Politics

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:41 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 25, 2007

Steve Soto Endorses Hillary

Over at The Left Coaster Steve Soto is endorsing Hillary. Steve says Hillary can

·Most capably deal with the biases of the corporate media;
·Most capably fight the right wing smear machine;
·Ruthlessly battle the GOP’s likely 2008 campaign tactics;
·Obtain the nomination and,
·Most importantly, step into the job in January 2009.
This follows the recent endorsement by Ambassador Joe Wilson.

The other day I wrote that I am not endorsing anyone for now. I do not dislike any of the major candidates.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:17 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 24, 2007

While Progressives Talk To Each Other, Conservatives Talk To The Public

Progressive bloggers talk to each other. Conservatives talk to the public.

For example, Bush and the Republicans recently renewed their claim Iraq attacked us on 9/11 and that is why we invaded that country. Their politicians, pundits, talk-show hosts, bloggers, news anchors, op-ed writers, letter-to-the-editor writers and others all said it, using largely the same "tested" words and phrases, on the radio, in the newspapers, in their blogs and on their TV channels. Progressive bloggers responded with the truth, but who did they reach?

The right talks to the public, and it works. Support for Initial Invasion Has Risen, Poll Shows,

Americans’ support for the initial invasion of Iraq has risen somewhat as the White House has continued to ask the public to reserve judgment about the war until at least the fall.

[. . .] However, the number of people who say the war is going “very badly” has fallen from 45 percent earlier in July to a current reading of 35 percent...

[. . .] The poll’s findings are in line with those of one conducted last week by The New York Times and CBS News.

And other lies continue as well. Just today, for example, from the right-wing Heritage Foundation, The War in Iraq: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions,
While WMD were not found, some may have been moved to Syria in the convoys of hundreds of trucks that crossed the border just before the U.S.-led intervention and during the first few weeks of fighting.

[. . .] If the U.S. pulls out of Iraq before it has a stable government capable of defending itself, the likes of bin Laden will have a safe haven from which to attack the U.S. again.

[. . .] If we stand back and allow al-Qaeda's terrorists to succeed, they will turn Iraq into a base for attacking us, just as they turned Afghanistan into a base for attacking us. The Clinton Administration decided that the U.S. had no stake in the civil war in Afghanistan in the 1990s. Only after the Taliban allowed al-Qaeda to operate from its territory did we discover—too late—that we did have a stake there.

Right, blame Clinton. But it was Clinton who did something about Iraq's WMD, and tried to do something about al Qaeda before 9/11, not Bush. Remember the "aspirin factory?"

Progressives need to start reaching the general public with the truth as well as each other. We need to start working together to fund and build the organizational infrastructure to develop and test messaging, then coordinate the use of messaging, train speakers, employ pundits, develop media channels, etc.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:11 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 19, 2007

Five Years of Seeing the Forest

This week is Seeing the Forest's fifth anniversary.

The first post ("Welcome" doesn't count.): Ralph Nader is a Scab,

In the union movement we learned the hard way that the only way to fight the moneyed interests is to stick together. It's called SOLIDARITY. It's what "union" MEANS.

When unions are in a fight the members stick together, and those crossing the lines are called "scabs".

In the 2000 election it was the usual fragile Democratic coalition fighting the usual moneyed interests. Ralph Nader broke the solidarity, divided the coalition, and lost us the election. Ralph Nader is a scab.


This post the next day defined the theme of this blog:
Seeing the forest
Recent polls show that the public is blaming Clinton for the business scandals, and Bush's popularity remains astronomical. That's a tree.

Let's see if we can see the forest. Look back to the 2000 election. Step back and look at the candidates. The Democrat's candidate was a well respected, well liked, extremely experienced, Vietnam vet, former seminary student, character beyond reproach, faithfully married family man, foreign policy expert, with many accomplishments including being the person in the Congress most responsible for advancing the Internet... The Republicans ran a foul-mouthed thoroughly inexperienced scandal-ridden (Harken oil, Rangers stadium, recipient of bribes directed at his father) failed businessman, continuously bailed out of jams by his father's connections, draft-dodger (worse, he got into the Nat. Guard through connections and then played hooky!), former drunk, probable drug-user, kids constantly in trouble, with a campaign entirely financed by large corporations obviously looking for favors.

But by election time the only issue was “character”, and the character in question was the Democratic candidate’s! That's the forest.

Issues like the "Love Canal story" and "I invented the Internet" were trees. The forest was how they pulled it off - the smears, the propaganda blitz, the way they spread their message and the way people hear messages these days.

With this weblog I'll be writing about this issue, seeing the forest for the trees.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:42 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 14, 2007

Asking Readers - Help Support My Work

Please help support the work I do here at Seeing the Forest, at Smoking Politics and at Commonweal Institute. None of these are paid positions.

You can contribute using the PayPal donation button, which is in the left column, partway down. You can also use the Amazon payment method.

And, there is a new option. BlogPatron allows you to support this blog, other blogs, and to do it on a recurring monthly basis.

I believe that my work is contributing to making this a better country. My reports and articles on the funding, organization, strategies and tactics of the right have helped people to understand what is happening to us, and have helped lead to development of strategies for pushing back.

I believe that my work with Patriot Project and Smoking Politics has helped people understand the fear and smear tactics of the right, and to start to come up with ways to back up our leaders and begin to counter this.

And I think that my writing has helped articulate ideas like Progressive Infrastructure and the need to reach the public to promote the benefits of progressive values and a progressive approach to issues. This has all been done for minimal pay -- $100 here and there -- and most often for no pay at all. I would like to at least make enough to cover my health insurance, which is $600 a month. So help me keep this work going.

Like I said, it is not easy to ask others to help out and like so many of us, it is not usually in my nature to do so. But if I am going to continue to do this work I do need to know that others are behind it and willing to be part of it by supporting my efforts.

Have a look at the collection I put together of links to articles, reports and resources for learning about the right-wing movement, its history, how it is funded and how it operates. You can look at my reports, The Attack on Trial Lawyers and Tort Law, and Responding to the Attack on Public Education and Teacher Unions. I have done election research like The Swiftboaters Are Back in the Water and John McCain 2000: The Swiftboaters' First Mission; exposing front-groups and their tactics.

These are just a few examples.

I would like to be able to keep doing this work. You can help me out by donating $100, or even $10. I am able to accept credit card contributions through the PayPal button in the left column, part way down or you can use Amazon.

THANKS!!!!

Also, if you would like to make a more substantial and long-term donation to support my work, you can click here to make a tax-deductible gift to the Commonweal Institute, which is a 501 (c) (3) tax-deductible organization, and let them know that it is to be used to support my work. A donation like this now will have the effect of a donation ten times as large to a political campaign, because it will help lay the groundwork for real change. It will help build public appreciation of progressive values, which will create demand for all progressive candidates and for progressive policies.

Thank you for your support.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 9, 2007

Open Left: Welcome To The Blogosphere

Matt Stoller, Chris Bowers and Mike Lux have launched a new website: Open Left

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:26 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 3, 2007

Do You Read Cursor?

Cursor is a pretty good summary.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Something To Try

Suggestion, try clicking the "Sphere: Related Content" link at the bottom of all the posts here.

Except, apparently, the top one... Got to figure that out...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 2, 2007

NewsMax Gets It Wrong As Usual

Far-far-right wingnut outlet NewsMax writes about last week's blogger conversation with Speaker Pelosi about impeachment. Being newsMax of course they got it wrong, and didn't provide links sl readers can check for themselves...

ePluribus Media bloggers Mike Stark and Dave Johnson had a June 28th conference call with the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on the subject of impeachment.

... Stark followed up with, "Respectfully, the question is whether or not the Constitution is worth it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:02 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 29, 2007

When Drudge Links...

The Drudge Report linked to Seeing the Forest yesterday and of course the server went down... And of course I get the e-mails from the well-informed wingnuts. My favorite:

Subject line: the fairness doctring

you liberal are such hypocrits, you can't win the debate so you have to make laws to stop it. i guees Hugo Chaves would be proud. you liberals all pieces of shit who should be hung for treason. thank God we have republicans that love this country. you bunch dumbasses.
Update - A question for readers: DO I 'bunch dumbasses?"

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:23 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 28, 2007

Hosting Problems

If you are reading this at all, you are lucky.

The Drudge Report linked to the Pelosi Call post below, and the current hosting company, Living Dot, just was not up to the task. The site was completely down, and even now a few hours later only one in ten visitors is getting through. They still don't have things working. And they charge a very high price for what they describe as "premium bandwidth."

So I will be finding a new hosting company soon. I don't think any readers will notice the change.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:24 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 27, 2007

Cigarett Century on Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Today At Noon EST

Today at noon listen live and call in at (718) 508-9604

Listen Live

The Smoking Politics, BlogTalkRadio show interviews Dr. Allan Brandt, author of The Cigarette Century. This is an important book, and Dr. Brandt tells an important story about how the tobacco industry shaped the 20th century.

So tune in. And if you miss the show you can always listen to it later.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:26 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 22, 2007

Digby's Speech at TBA

Here is the text of Digby's speech the other night at the Take Back America conference: Digby: Bloggers Are Part of a Revolutionary Participatory Democracy. Excerpts,

...Then there is the criticism that we are fascists or Stalinists demanding that everyone march in lockstep to the edicts of our leadership -- generally assumed to be Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos -- who apparently directs us with secret signals deeply embedded in the code of the Daily Kos web site while we carry on an elaborate ruse of spirited political debate and disagreement in public.

...We are passionate about politics, and in this era of Republican corruption, excess and failure, that passion sometimes manifests itself as anger. But how can you not be angry? So many institutions have failed us in the last decade that being vitriolic seems the only sane response.

...So ... the netroots is ... a revolution. A revolutionary participatory democracy. And, in this way, the left is more effective than the right. Whether by temperament or philosophy, we are simply better suited to the free-form, constantly changing nature of these new political communities.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:42 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Max Blumenthal Films Take Back America Conference


Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:13 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 21, 2007

Airplane Day

I'll be on the road today.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:48 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 20, 2007

Great Interview With Joe Wilson

On this morning's Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show we had a great conversation with Joe Wilson. It was a great show and I recommend listening. Also, Rick Perlstein was great.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:48 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 19, 2007

Who Is Digby?

Who is Digby?

Find out tonite.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:13 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Nader

I'm at the "bloggor row" but I heard that Ralph Nader is introducing Senator Mike Gravel.

Ralph Nader is honored as the subject of my first post (after "Welcome.")

I'm posting this under the topic "Iraq War." Thanks, Ralph.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:44 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 18, 2007

I Am At The Take Back America Conference

I am at the Take Back America conference in Washington, DC. I'm on "blogger row" so come by and visit if you are here. I'll also be doing some Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio, over at "radio row."

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:15 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 16, 2007

Right-Winger Sues Blogger And Wins

Lee Kaplan writes at David Horowitz's far-right, anti-Muslim FrontPageMag.com. A college student set up the blog Lee Kaplan Watch to expose what the guy is writing. He was sued by Kaplan in small claims court for "business interference," and Kaplan won $7500. because it was small claims court the judge was not required to explain his decision.

The blogger writes,

I hope that sufficient attention is paid to the great danger that what has happened to me poses to all of us. It is by all means a serious issue. My first amendment rights have been subverted with support from the courts, which only shows that everybody is in danger of facing these abusive small claims court defamation suits. My speech has been punished by a ruling with no opinion explaining why or advising me what not to do in the future. My credibility has been tarnished by a trial with incredibly low standards for admissible evidence and a messy, inconsistent court procedure. And, for me, worst of all: I will never know what element of Kaplan's claim, if any, the judge agreed with, though Kaplan will certainly continue to claim that all of them were accepted, though he knows well that this is not the case.
This is a freedom of speech and right-to-blog issue. We must do something to reverse this because it will become a convenient way for right-wingers to harass all of us.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:39 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Formatting Fixed in Internet Explorer

If you use Internet Explorer, you can see that the appearance problem is fixed. I didn't even know there was a problem until someone called me, but apparently it had been there for a few weeks!

I use Firefox, so I didn't see it. I don't know if it was a problem in versions earlier than version 7.

Anyway, it's back to normal. Sorry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:17 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Appeal For Funds To Attend Take Back America

I would will attend and blog from the Take Back America conference in Washington DC. I'm in California, and airfare, room, food and transportation will come to around $1200. I have rounded up a bit of help so far, but I am hoping to raise the rest of the money from the readers of this blog.

So can you help out? I have not asked for much from my readers, even in hard times. I have been posting here continuously since July, 2002. It's a lot of work but I manage. I certainly don't do this for money, but sometimes money is required, like now, to pay for things like travel and lodging. Asking like this isn't easy for me but I am asking for some help from you.

PayPal donation button is in the left column, partway down
or Amazon.


Beyond just this trip, I believe that my work is contributing to making this a better country. My reports and articles on the funding, organization, strategies and tactics of the right have helped people to understand what is happening to us, and have helped lead to development of strategies for pushing back. I believe my work with Patriot Project and Smoking Politics has helped people understand the fear and smear tactics of the right, and to start to come up with ways to back up our leaders and begin to counter this. And I think that my writing has helped articulate ideas like Progressive Infrastructure and the need to reach the public to promote the benefits of progressive values and a progressive approach to issues. This has all been done for minimal pay -- $100 here and there -- and most often for no pay at all. So help me keep this work going.

Like I said, it is not easy to ask others to help out and like so many of us, it is not usually in my nature to do so. But I think it is time to change this. If I am going to continue to do this work I do need to know that others are behind it and willing to be part of it by supporting my efforts. Take a stroll through my "Best Of" over in the left column, or have a look at the collection I put together of links to articles, reports and resources for learning about the right-wing movement, its history, how it is funded and how it operates. You can look at my reports, The Attack on Trial Lawyers and Tort Law, and Responding to the Attack on Public Education and Teacher Unions. I have done election research like The Swiftboaters Are Back in the Water and John McCain 2000: The Swiftboaters' First Mission; exposing front-groups and their tactics. These are just a few examples.

I would like to be able to keep doing this work. You can help me out by donating $100, or even $10. I am able to accept credit card contributions through the PayPal button in the left column, part way down or Amazon.

THANKS!!!!

Also, if you would like to make a more substantial and long-term donation to support my work, you can click here to make a tax-deductible gift to the Commonweal Institute, which is a 501 (c) (3) organization, and let them know that it is to be used to support my work. A donation like this now will have the effect of a donation ten times as large to a political campaign, because it will help lay the groundwork for real change. It will help build public appreciation of progressive values, which will create demand for all progressive candidates and for progressive policies.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 15, 2007

John Emerson's Post

If you were sent by Digby or DeLong or Perlstein, the full post by John is here: Seeing the Forest: The "Honest Conservatives" should shut the fuck up

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 14, 2007

HillaryHub

Take a look at HillaryHub - a news aggregator, covers the blogs and news headlines.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:45 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 12, 2007

Smoking Politics Takes On Bozell's Media Research Center

Smoking PoliticsJoin Dave Johnson and James Boyce tomorrow at noon Eastern for Smoking Politics on Blog Talk Radio. Dave and James will be talking about the Media Research Center, the far-right media watchdog founded by right-winger Brent Bozell.

Tune in to Smoking Politics on Blog Talk Radio to hear more about the MRC and Brent Bozell and their role in the rise of the right-wing smear campaign.

And, as always, you're invited to call in to the show and talk with Dave and James about smears, fears, and the politics of attack-and-distract. The call-in number is (718) 508-9604.

Blog Talk Radio

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:25 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Post Formatting

I do not know why this blog has started to randomly center text in posts. I have not changed anything - especially not the css stylesheets. Does anyone have any ideas?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:15 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 6, 2007

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Today Noon EST!

Noon EST TODAY! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with James Boyce and Dave Johnson will be live Wednesday at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online:
blog radio

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 5, 2007

A Blog Recommend

Matewan - Journal and Haymarket Square.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Things To Explore

There's a lot going on at Seeing the Forest.

If you look down the left column you'll see a list of News Sources. These are sources I recommend, like AlterNet and BuzzFlash. Below that is a "Best Of" section. The blogroll is again disabled while I find an alternative to the Blogrolling service, which seems to be having perpetual server problems that hold up this site being worked on.

Down the right column you'll find a lot of great info. You can SUBSCRIBE - receive a daily summary of Seeing the Forest posts, or use the buttons to subscribe in your own blog reader service. You can PLACE AN AD -- they don't cost much and reach thousands of people. Further down you'll find category and date archives.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 3, 2007

Blog Reader Survey


Please take the Seeing the Forest blog reader survey!


Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:55 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 26, 2007

The Blogroll

The blogroll is back - Blogrolling seems to be working again. (The blogroll is the list of blogs that go down the left column, beginning part of the way down the page.)

Let's see if we can clean it up a bit. You can help out by clicking several of the links and if they are not current please leave a comment here and I'll remove the listing. In the meantime you will likely discover a GREAT new place for information or entertainment.

And of course if you know of good blogs that ought to be on the blogroll, leave a comment about that, too.

My philosophy is that we are all in this together, and the more of us that link to each other the better. This helps people discover new ideas.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:26 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 23, 2007

Smoking Politics Radio Show - Wednesday May 23 Noon EST

Please join James and Ime today at Noon Eastern, live on BlogTalkRadio, as we discuss Tony Snow's attack on Al Gore and the irony of the Bush Administration asking something to be "fact checked." We also will continue our coverage of John Edwards's hair cut story - the smear that just won't die. We will be taking calls at (718) 508-9604. Of course, if you miss the show live, it will be archived here and you can listen at your convenience.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:12 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 16, 2007

bad skippy

ouch

and read the comments

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:20 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Today At Noon EST

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with Dave Johnson and James Boyce will be live today at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online:
Gotta Get Something Off Your Chest?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:46 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 15, 2007

Media Transparency Needs Some Bucks

Media Transparency: The money behind conservative media is the SOURCE of much of the understanding that many of have gained about how the right operates. The work they have done is basic to tracking the flow of the money from the funders to the think tanks to the pundits and operatives...

But it takes money to keep an organization going and it's time to send them some money. Their parent is Cursor.org, and that is the 501 (c) (3) that keeps things going.

This is the contributions page.

Go help.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

We Guarantee Al Gore Will Be Attacked Next Week. We Absolutely Guarantee It.

By Dave Johnson and James Boyce of Smoking Politics

All too often, Democrats are swiftboated, ozoned, attacked and smeared and after the attacks happen, sometimes they respond - sometimes they don't.

We have had enough.

Here's what we know and here's what we're going to do about it.

On Monday, Al Gore has a new book coming out next week, titled, "The Assault On Reason".

Because he is standing up, telling the truth and because he simply is a Democrat and Progressive leader, Al Gore will be smeared mercilessly by the right-wing smear machine. He will be ridiculed, made fun of and mocked. They will tease and make fun of him.

They will rush to say that he is bitter about 2000, crazy, insane, pontificating and out of touch.

They will bring up his utility bills and the boards he is a member of. They will talk about his kiss with Tipper, her crusade against vulgar rap lyrics.

They will bring up his weight and the beard. And say it's all about 2008.

But what they will not do:

TALK ABOUT WHAT'S IN THE BOOK.

Why are we so sure?

Because this is the core of the Right Wing tobacco-driven strategy. You distract. You create doubt. You sell fear and mock those that are not cool.

You have to do this if you are them because you simply can't talk about the facts. Smoking kills - how are you going to sell that little fact? By ignoring the facts and selling smoking as 'Marlboro Country' clean healthy outdoor living. Right Wing programs and policies are not good for the average American. So how do you sell them? Same way. Ignore the facts. Instead, try to kill the messenger.

In this book, Al Gore is going to go straight up against the Right Wing smear and noise machine - the one that we have been writing about at Smoking Politics. And we know what that means.

Over at Amazon you'll find this description of Gore's upcoming book:

A visionary analysis of how the politics of fear, secrecy, cronyism, and blind faith has combined with the degradation of the public sphere to create an environment dangerously hostile to reason

... We live in an age when the thirty-second television spot is the most powerful force shaping the electorate's thinking, and America is in the hands of an administration less interested than any previous administration in sharing the truth with the citizenry. Related to this and of even greater concern is this administration's disinterest in the process by which the truth is ascertained, the tenets of fact-based reasoning-first among them an embrace of open inquiry in which unexpected and even inconvenient facts can lead to unexpected conclusions.

How did we get here? How much damage has been done to the functioning of our democracy and its role as steward of our security? Never has there been a worse time for us to lose the capacity to face the reality of our long-term challenges, from national security to the economy, from issues of health and social welfare to the environment. As The Assault on Reason shows us, we have precious little time to waste.

You stand up and say this, that's courage. Just like Al Gore was right about the Iraq War back in 2002 when Democratic Senators were falling all over themselves to vote FOR THE WAR, and Al Gore was against it.

So at Smoking Politics we are going to try to be ready in advance this time. Imagine that - not on the defensive, not surprised at the smear that shows up, not scrambling around trying to figure out what to do about it.

We're going to respond the minute the first attack shows up. We're going to be researching the apparatus that transmits the smear. We're going to explain the mechanism of the smear. We're going to expose those behind the smear. And we're going to launch a pushback against the smear, into the press.

At Smoking Politics we think that going into the 2008 election cycle - whoever the candidate is - nothing matters as much as this issue - the first thing we have to defeat is this Fear and $mear strategy that has been so effective at destroying our leaders and building up their own.

For the Democratic Party, the Progressive causes it supports and for the country, taking dead aim against the Right on this issue is critical to future success. A most important but often overlooked first step is just to be able to spread the news of the existence of this system and highlight how it impacts public debate. Some of the suggested tactics may seem basic and simplistic, but they are the building blocks we need to execute in order to stand up and defend ourselves, our candidates and our values.

While many feel that the Right's power and influence is diminished by the 2006 election, and that the Republican Party is waning, nothing is further from the truth and the stakes in the next election are extremely high.

Will the party and the leadership that ozoned Al Gore, race-baited John McCain, destroyed Max Cleland and swift-boated John Kerry lay down their arms and play nice? Absolutely not. Why would they?

The famous Chinese warrior Sun Tzu says:

Know thy self, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories.

Al Gore is ready to fight and he understands the battle and what's at stake.

We are at peace as you can only be when you know what you're fighting for.

Are you ready to stand up and fight with us?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:09 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 9, 2007

Smoking Politics

By Dave Johnson and James Boyce

There was a time when this country worked to solve its problems.

There was a time in this country when political campaigns were about issues and solutions and ideas.

There was a time when our legislators honestly debated, and minds could be changed, and bipartisan laws could be passed.

There was a time when America was seen as an honest broker for peace, even in the Middle East. And there was even a time when there were solar panels on roof of the White House.

Ronald Reagan - the "Marlboro Man" - took office as President in 1981 - 26 years ago! That means that people under 40 today don't even remember a time when America "worked" and took care of its people and paid its bills. They don't remember a time when the people rather than the corporations and the rich made the decisions. And it especially means that they don't remember a time when campaigns were about anything other than cheap psychological tricks and smears.

Since then liberals and progressives and Democrats of all kinds and colors have been looking back in shock and awe and wondering what happened to them, and what has been happening to the country. Why have we been getting meaner and uglier and greedier and more violent?

Smoking Politics is about what has been happening to us and our country. Smoking Politics is about looking into and exposing the techniques and the tricks and the scams and the sophisticated psychological persuasion methods that are used on us. Smoking Politics is an organization and website and radio show and campaign to get ahead of this attack politics and restore America's ability to make decisions and solve problems and take care of its people again.

Why the name "Smoking Politics?" In our post announcing Smoking Politics, we wrote,

Why do we call this project "Smoking Politics?" Because the origins of the conservative strategy of Fear and $mear come out of the golden age of the tobacco companies. The tobacco companies learned that with the right combination of psychological persuasion tactics and media budget that literally anything could be marketed to the American public.

They were so good that they could persuade people to kill themselves - and to hand over their money while they did it. The right saw the success of this strategy - and noted the total lack of facts and morals involved and decided - if people will pay to smoke, maybe they could be convinced to support a right-wing agenda which was equally deadly. Maybe they could actually convince blue-collar workers to accept the right-wing agenda that asked them to give up their health care and pensions so CEOs could buy bigger jets? So they took these tactics into the political realm.

In that post we wrote about the tactics of Fear and $mear,
...the tobacco strategy of Fear and $mear, combined with the psychological persuasion tactic of "Marlboro Man" appeals to self-image and its counter-image of ridiculing and humiliating the "wimp" became America's politics.

What is Ronald Reagan's image, hat askew on his horse, if not that of the Marlboro Man?

And how did they cast Jimmy Carter to prepare the country for Reagan's campaign, if not the ineffective wimp and an object of ridicule - despite the fact that Jimmy Carter was a Navy man? Sound familiar? Fear and $mear.

So we are moving rapidly into the 2008 election season, and we're seeing the tactics of Fear and $mear coming out to poison our politics once again.

The most recent example? At the request of the Port of San Francisco, Speaker Nancy Pelosi added a $25 million in waterfront improvements for her city, San Francisco, to a water redevelopment bill passed by the House in April. The Republican Party issued a press release accusing her of corruption, falsely stating that Pelosi had inserted the "earmark" to benefit her husband, who owns property "very close" to the waterfront. AP, without checking any of the facts, wrote a story echoing the Republican Party statement, which was immediately pushed by the Drudge Report.

The right-wing amplifier kicked into action. A few examples:

Greg Sargent of TPM'S Horse's Mouth actually bothered to check the facts, and found that there was nothing to the story, that the Port had requested the improvements, and that Pelosi's husband's property was actually three miles away from the proposed improvement.

Media Matters also has details, in their post AP ran false headline on story reporting baseless GOP allegations against Pelosi

So here we are again, with the so-called "conservatives" using another lie and smear to try to sway people. How long will this continue? Until the public is made aware that they actually do just lie.

And that's what smoking Politics will be working to do - expose the lies, expose the tactic of Fear and $mear. Stop by and say hi. Or listen in today at Noon Eastern as we have our weekly BlogTalkRadio Show, "Smoking Politics Radio Show."

Listen Live

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:07 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 8, 2007

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Live at Noon EST Wednesday

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with Dave Johnson and James Boyce will be live Wednesday at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online:
Gotta Get Something Off Your Chest?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 7, 2007

More Mike Gravel - "Left-Wing Fringe"

I came across this New York Magazine interview with Mike Gravel, and it is one more example of why mainstream, grassroots people are turning away from the "traditional" media. Many are turning to blogs.

We Do Not Understand What the Hell Mike Gravel Is Talking About - New York Magazine's Daily Intelligencer,

The star of last week's Democratic presidential debate was a fringe contender Mike Gravel, 77, a former Alaska senator, who became a blogosphere sensation for saying that it should be a felony for Dubya & Co. to stay in Iraq.
OK, let's take this step by step. Why is the word "fringe" in there? Next, that is not what the guy said. He said the following,
We need to find another way. I really would like to sit down with Pelosi and with Reid, and I would hope the other senators would focus on, how do you get out? You pass the law, not a resolution, a law making it a felony to stay there. And I'll give you the text of it.

And if you're worried about filibuster, here's what you do tactically. They can pass it in the House. We've got the votes there.

We've got the votes there.

In the Senate, let them filibuster it. And let Reid call up every -- at 12:00 every day to have a cloture vote. And let the American people see clearly who's keeping the war going and who's not.

And then, of course, is the nasty ending:
Do you think Dennis Kucinich is angry you're stealing his thunder as the left-wing fringe candidate?
Stop that. I'm not the far-left fringe candidate, and please don't write that. We've had somewhat of a testy conversation in this interview, and now we've got to end this.
"Left-wing fringe" Right.

So there's a Neiman Macrus ad and a Delta Airlines ad on the page. Their media kit says they have 90,000 unique visitors per day. (yeah, right.) Their rate card says there is a $20,000 minimum to run an ad there. The Neiman Marcus ad has a $40 CPM which means they pay $3600 each day so those supposed 90,000 unique visitors can hear about how Americans who oppose the Iraq war are the "left-wing fringe".

I don't charge nearly as much for an ad, and I don't insult readers. Except certain ones. You know who you are.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:53 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Why People Read Blogs

Through Atrios: Firedoglake - Firedoglake weblog サ Zombies,

I don't know what it's going to take to kill the "teenagers in their pajamas" stereotype but I suppose I should be grateful. If these people were any less lazy and stupid we wouldn't have a readership.
Exactly. The reason blogger have readers is because the "traditional" media is not serving the public interest.

In the above-referenced post, Jane quotes from the 2006 Blogads Readership Survey:

The median political blog reader is a 43 year old man with an annual family income of $80,000. He reads 6 blogs a day for 10 hours a week. 39% have post-graduate degrees. 70% have contributed to a campaign.
Here's the thing. News is now a business, not a public service. There is a fundamental conflict between serving the larger public good and being a business. It is one or the other, not both. It is foolish to have any other expectation.

The only way to change that is to mandate that the media act in the public interest.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:50 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Governor Bill Richardson Interview

Heading Left's Blog Talk Radio show interviews Gov. Richardson. If you're interested this is a good listen. Just click the link, and it will start playing. (I am not on the show.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 2, 2007

Listening to Recent Shows

Speaking of the Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show, in the right-hand column I have added a media player, that will always play the most recent show.

It looks like this: (click the right-arrow in the left side of the media player to hear the show)

The most recent show:



Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Links From Today's Smoking Politics Show

Here are the links we promised from today's Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show:

Psychology Today : The Ideological Animal,

"In one study, they exposed some participants to the letters WTC or the numbers 9/11 in an image flashed too quickly to register at the conscious level. They exposed other participants to familiar but random combinations of letters and numbers, such as area codes. Then they gave them words like coff__, sk_ll, and gr_ve, and asked them to fill in the blanks. People who'd seen random combinations were more likely to fill in coffee, skill, and grove. But people exposed to subliminal terrorism primes more often filled in coffin, skull, and grave. "The mere mention of September 11 or WTC is the same as reminding Americans of death," explains Solomon."


Fear of death may factor into who we vote for

Fear as the driving political belief

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:44 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 25, 2007

Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio Show Live at Noon EST

The Smoking Politics BlogTalkRadio show with Dave Johnson and James Boyce will be live today at Noon EST, 9am Pacific. Give us a call! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

Click this to listen live online:
Gotta Get Something Off Your Chest?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 24, 2007

Blog Comments

The press likes to write about comments at various liberal/progressive blogs, and how "uncivil" we are.

But never about the comments at right-wing sites.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 21, 2007

Saturday Cartoons

BobGeiger.com: The Saturday Cartoons

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:10 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 18, 2007

Smoking Politics Radio Show Live at 9am PDT

I'm hosting the Smoking Politics show today at 9am California Time, Noon EST TODAY! The call-in number is (718) 508-9604

We're going to talk about Mitt Romney's Dirty Money and other subjects on our "Smoking Politics Radio Show" a.

Taylor Marsh, of www.taylormarsh.com will join us with her wonderful and unique perspective.

Listen Live

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 11, 2007

Introducing Smoking Politics. And Our Mission To End The Right Wing Strategy Of Fear and $mear.

By Dave Johnson and James Boyce

Today, we are launching a new web site, and a new radio show, and continuing a passion and partnership that has been developing over the past year. The site is Smoking Politics and on it we will track, expose and fight back - hard - every single day against the right's strategy of Fear and $mear. We will also host a weekly BlogTalkRadio show, The Smoking Politics Radio Hour, with our first show today at noon Eastern, 9:00 am Pacific. We will be taking calls.

blog radio

Why do we call this project "Smoking Politics?" Because the origins of the conservative strategy of Fear and $mear come out of the golden age of the tobacco companies. The tobacco companies learned that with the right combination of psychological persuasion tactics and media budget that literally anything could be marketed to the American public.

They were so good that they could persuade people to kill themselves - and to hand over their money while they did it. The right saw the success of this strategy - and noted the total lack of facts and morals involved and decided - if people will pay to smoke, maybe they could be convinced to support a right-wing agenda which was equally deadly. Maybe they could actually convince blue-collar workers to accept the right-wing agenda that asked them to give up their health care and pensions so CEOs could buy bigger jets? So they took these tactics into the political realm.

Look at how much of the right's political agenda is aligned with the needs of the tobacco companies. There's deregulation, especially in the area of protecting the health and safety of the public, or of regulating toxic substances. There's "tort reform" - the attempt to prevent victims of corporate malfeasance from using the courts to hold companies responsible for their actions. And, of course, there's tax cuts for corporations - and the government looking the other way as the tobacco industry continues to spend $35,000,000 a month marketing their product.

There's another critical link between the far-right and the tobacco industry. Few people know that Karl Rove was a tobacco company advisor. Even fewer know that the heads of the "political consulting firms" like DCI that set up Republican-connected 527 front groups like the Swift Boat Vets came from tobacco companies as well. Tobacco funds supported the right. Tobacco consultants sold the agenda.

The recent Union of Concerned Scientists report on the efforts to discredit global warming science describe an in-place infrastructure of organizations that had aided the tobacco companies in their strategy of discrediting the science that said cigarettes were killing hundreds of thousands of Americans. The report describes how Exxon basically took over this infrastructure of science-denial organizations and used it to muddy the waters about the science that shows global warming is occurring.

And look at the ridicule that Al Gore is enduring from the right. Why? Because he is trying to save the planet - he is the object of humiliation. We even saw it just this week when a "charity" who recently gave Rush Limbaugh an award for "media excellence" and accepts $50,000 a year from ExxonMobil attacked Laurie David and Sheryl Crow's Stop Global Warming tour.

So the tobacco strategy of Fear and $mear, combined with the psychological persuasion tactic of "Marlboro Man" appeals to self-image and its counter-image of ridiculing and humiliating the "wimp" became America's politics.

What is Ronald Reagan's image, hat askew on his horse, if not that of the Marlboro Man?

And how did they cast Jimmy Carter to prepare the country for Reagan's campaign, if not the ineffective wimp and an object of ridicule - despite the fact that Jimmy Carter was a Navy man? Sound familiar? Fear and $mear. And how have they cast their politicians and policies since? As variations on the macho Marlboro Man. Do we need to say how our Democratic leaders have been portrayed since? $meared as effete, ineffectual clowns.

And then there's the Fear Factor - we spend more on military than the rest of world's countries combined, but we need to live in fear. Fear of a man in cave. Fear of a country that doesn't even have nuclear weapons. Fear of fighting them here if we don't fight them over there. Fear of 9/11.

At The Patriot Project last fall, we explored and exposed this pattern. We were able to begin to bring awareness of this tactic into the media. Many of those posts are here.

Now we are bringing all this experience to Smoking Politics, where we will fight this fight on a daily basis - exposing the lies and smears and sell strategies that the right uses to win elections and destroy our leaders.

We will show, as Swiftboater-financing Sam Fox's recess appointment, and the ongoing US Attorney scandal clearly showcased - that there is a circle of corruption. Right-wing donors pay for the $mears of our leaders and reap financial benefits and appointments and a government that looks the other way. They win elections through fear and $mear. They make money from their victories and the cycle repeats itself.

We think that going into the 2008 election cycle nothing matters as much as this issue - the first thing we have to defeat is this tobacco Fear and $mear strategy that has been so effective at destroying our leaders and building up their own.

We have plenty of time to lay the groundwork on this effort before the 2008 campaign is in full swing. But we don't have sufficient funding to hire the researchers and writers we need. Stay tuned as we will be announcing fundraising events and online fundraising efforts.

And don't forget to tuned to tune into our show today. We look forward to hearing from you.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 10, 2007

Smoking Politics Hour

Tomorrow (Wednesday) at 9am California time, come listen to the Smoking Politics Hour's first talk show, with me and James Boyce, through Blog Talk Radio - and call in. Or you can listen to it later. Click here or on the Blog Talk Radio icon below to join in.

blog radio


Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 4, 2007

skippy

what has skippy the bush kangaroo been up to lately?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 2, 2007

YearlyKos In August

It's time to be thinking about going to the YearlyKos Convention this year. It is going to be August 2-5 in Chicago.

Visit the website, and maybe drop them a dollar or two to help make it happen!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:53 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 23, 2007

Today's Show

Today's Heading Left Blog Talk Radio show which I guest-hosted with Nate Wilcox, with guests Gina Cooper of YearlyKos, McJoan of DailyKos and Matt Bai of the New York Times Magazine is now available for listening.

You can listen to the show here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Today's Heading Left Blog Talk Radio Show

Today at 11:30am Pacific Time I am again guest-hosting this week's Heading Left Blog Talk Radio show. The details are here.

This week we are talking to Gina Cooper of YearlyKos Matt Bai of the New York Times Magazine and McJoan of DailyKos. The show is titled "Where the Blogs Meet the Mainstream." From Heading Left:

Matt Bai of the New York Times Magazine and Gina Cooper of YearlyKos, and DailyKos front-page writer McJoan will be the special guests on Heading Left’s Blog Talk Radio show. This should be a very interesting show. Aside from his upcoming book on Democratic politics, Bai and McJoan will be moderating “an unprecedented forum featuring potential 2008 presidential candidates during the second annual YearlyKos Convention on August 4th in Chicago.” Bai’s book, “The Argument: Billionaires, Bloggers, and the Battle to Remake Democratic Politics”, is scheduled for release in early September 2007. Also, “Dr. Jeffrey Feldman, author and blogger at Frameshopisopen.com, will ask questions submitted in advance from tens of thousands of blog readers and will facilitate questions from convention attendees.” Tune in tomorrow and feel free to call in at (646) 652-4803 to speak with Matt Bai, McJoan, and Gina Cooper. This should be an exciting show, hosted by Nate Wilcox of HeadingLeft and guest host Dave Johnson of SeeingtheForest filling in for the vacationing James Boyce.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 20, 2007

The Reach Of Progressive Blogs

What do people "know?" If you are reading this you are probably a hyper-informed citizen. But what about the rest of us? What information reaches the public?

Progressive blogs reach progressives. Right-wing blogs are part of a noise machine that is designed to reach and influence the general public.

Right-wing blogs are tied into the conservative movement's larger "noise machine" information apparatus. This is why we see successful results when the right launches an information campaign. They echo or are echoed through every channel through which the public receives information -- by Limbaugh, Fox News, Drudge, and funded outreach into other channels, and their politicians are part of the coordinated process. So their message gets out there and the public "knows" what they want them to know. A very good example is what happened to Dan Rather. The public "knows" that Dan Rather "tried to smear President Bush" with "forged documents." In fact the origin of the documents is still unknown, and forged or not, the underlying story was factual.

It would benefit us to keep in mind that progressive blogs have a limited reach and that we need to keep looking to extend that reach. There is no progressive noise machine. There is no coordination. There is no funded outreach to the general public. Democratic politicians likely as not fear blogs and tend not to join in a coordinated messaging efforts. Yes, progressive blogs are read by media figures, informed opinion leaders and public officials, and that is very important. But we have very little effect on what the general public "knows." Only after shrill repetition for several days or weeks across the entire blogosphere does an important story even begin to reach into the traditional corporate media.

Current example - the prosecutor scandal. On the Heading Left Blog Talk Radio Show last week Nate mentioned that there was wide coverage of the scandal over firing US Attorneys who wouldn't play ball and drop investigations of Republican corruption or wouldn't falsely accuse Democrats of crimes. But in my own local paper there was only a short article on page 6, and it repeated verbatim White House talking points that the firings were "handled badly," that the President "has the right to hire and fire prosecutors," and that "Clinton fired all 93 prosecutors while Bush fired only 8."

Older example: What is the current percentage of Americans who think Iraq attacked us n 9/11? It's probably still very high - considering that Iraq didn't. What is the percentage who think we found the WMD?

Older example: The Downing Street Memo received constant, ongoing attention in blogs but I don't think it ever really broke through into the traditional corporate media.

So yes, progressive bloggers have an effect, but let's not get ahead of ourselves in our understanding of the effect we have.

The beginning of a solution lies in joining with progressive politicians to carry the message to a wider audience. Then a story can begin to be driven into the corporate media. Recent example: The Fox News Nevada Democratic Presidential Debate. Visit MyDD and scroll backwards through the history of Matt Stoller's effort to get the Democratic candidates to back away from Fox News. It worked. But more than that - much more - when Democratic political leaders joined with the blogs to drive the message the result was much bigger than just another intra-blog discussion. Fox News was exposed as little more than a Republican Party mouthpiece. Their credibility and brand suffered and the public began to get a glimpse into the nature of this propaganda network.

Homework, read about The Daou Triangle, and check out this illustration and an updated one.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:28 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 16, 2007

Yesterday's Heading Left Show

Yesterday I co-hosted Heading Left's Blog Talk Radio show, sitting in for James Boyce. Nate Wilcox and I talked with Bobby Muller of Veterans for America and John Aravosis of AmericaBlog.

Here's the page to look at.

GO GET YOU SOME DAVE! Click here to listen to the show now.

Click here to download it as WMA. Click here to download it as MP3

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:07 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 15, 2007

Republican Blogs Support For Death Plot Against Carter and Clinton

Do you remember the recent national media flap over supposed "liberal" commenters at Huffington Post supposedly being sorry that a suicide bomber missed Vice President Cheney during his visit to Afghanistan? Never mind that the Huffington Post immediately deleted the comments, and never mind that there were suspicions that the commenters were actually right-wingers setting the Huffington Post up for the story.

Well the very same blogs that drove that story into the national news are chock full of comments today praising al Qeuda terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed for plotting to kill former Presidents Carter and Clinton. And those comments are not only not deleted, they come from regulars, and remain.

Will this also become a national media story? Of course not - IOKIYAR!

In the post Support for al-Qaida plots on large right-wing blog, Glenn Greenwald has the story.

But commenters at Little Green Footballs have not only expressed surprise, but outright support, for Mohammed's assassination plot against a former U.S. President. They are out in droves expressing sorrow that Al Qaeda did not have the opportunity to carry out its plot.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:37 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Right Wingnuts Back On Vince Foster, Clinton Murders

I'm not kidding, this US Attorneys scandal has them so desperate that they're back on that stuff.

4/93 - Waco
5/93 - Travel Gate
7/93 - Vince Foster shows up dead - shot in the head - in the park (much more here).

All of which were easy to sweep under the carpet as the DOJ had a completely freshman class of US Attorneys (especially in Arkansas).

Really, you have to go see it for yourself.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Guest-Hosting Headling Left's BlogTalkRadio Show Today

I will be guest-hosting the Heading Left BlogTalkRadio show today at 11:00AM PDT / 2:00PM EDT.

Heading Left's Nate Wilcox and guest host Dave Johnson talk to Bobby Muller, of Veterans for America and John Aravosis of AmericaBlog.
Click here for more detailed information. The call-in number is (646) 652-4803.


Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 11, 2007

Mary Ratcliff New Commonweal Institute Fellow

Mary Ratcliff, who blogs at Pacific Views and The Left Coaster, is now a Commonweal Institute Fellow.

Mary writes about this in Pacific Views: Commonweal Institute And Building The Progressive Infrastructure

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 28, 2007

Presidential Candidate Forum at YearlyKos

Last year's YealyKos convention made history. This year's YearlyKos convention is looking better and better!

YearlyKos Netroots Convention announces unprecedented forum for 2008 presidential candidates and progressive leaders,

Today organizers of the YearlyKos Convention announced an unprecedented forum featuring potential 2008 presidential candidates during the second annual YearlyKos Convention on August 4th in Chicago. Organizers touted the forum as an opportunity to use technology to empower regular citizens and grassroots activists to engage, vet and evaluate America’s potential leaders, both face-to-face and online.

...Organizers are also asking the candidates to spend time in individual, unscripted “citizen dialogues” with convention attendees, encouraging substantive discussions that transcend the competitive nature of most joint appearances on the campaign trail. The events and conference are open to media and blog coverage.

Go read the whole thing.

You can register here. It's in Chicago, August 2-5.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 24, 2007

Comments

My logs show that I am getting several spam comments per minute right now. I imagine this is going on across the blogosphere...

I have the blog set to only publish comments from authenticated commenters so you don't have to see the "webcam casino poker viagra" crap that the spammers are trying to post...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:41 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 23, 2007

It Really Is This Simple - Bloggers Are About The Real World

I glanced at "The Note" this morning to get the Washington Insider view of things.

"See the Democrats in Congress not falling into the Republicans' trap (yet) and avoiding a stop-the-war strategy that will (fully) open them up to charges of abandoning the troops. As they tinker with various legislative efforts to achieve their goal of bringing American troops home, Democrats have three main goals: (1) appease their base; (2) keep their coalition together; and (3) most of all, pressure enough Republicans to demand that the President change course. Oh: and: as a political matter, is the surge working?"
I have to give them credit for saying right at the start, "to achieve their goal of bringing the troops home." But the rest of it? The rest of it is about the politics of it. In fact the entire rest of today's Note is about "the politics" of everything - which is to say, about nothing.

The DC media perspective is about the politics. The blogger perspective is about what is happening in the real world. A lot of people are content to argue about politics and positions. I guess it's easier, emotionally, than thinking about the real world.

Here are some things going on in the real world:

Those people in Iraq are D.E.A.D.

That national debt is Money. That. We. Owe.

Houses and buildings Will. Be. Under. Water. from global warming.

Every single day that the posturing continues more people die in Iraq, more carbon goes into the air, more money is owed.

It really is this simple.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:53 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 20, 2007

Blog

Take a look at The Ybor City Stogie

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 17, 2007

The Machine is Us/ing Us

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:17 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 5, 2007

Expanding Blog Readership

In today's post, Apex Reached? Moving From Bloggers To Communities, Chris Bowers at MyDD discusses whether progressive blog traffic may have reached a plateau.

I think that what is happening is that the blogs have reached a point that commonly occurs in tech ventures. We have saturated the early adapters but are not doing the right things to reach out to the larger mainstream "consumer" audience. Up to now, adapters came to us. We offered "cool" so there was a reason to seek us out. But expecting that people will find you just because you offer something great is a path to failure. Reaching the larger mainstream audience requires a different approach. They don't come to you, you have to go to them.

Silicon Valley tech marketers talk about this problem as "Crossing the Chasm." That's the title of a 1991 book by Geoffrey Moore, and I think the theme of the book applies. There is a chasm between the early adopters and the the next group that might be interested, called the "Early Majority" by Moore. This is a larger group than the early adopters - the beginnings of the mass-consumer market you really want to reach with your product - but they are not as adventurous and are more risk-averse. Where the early adopters will seek you out, you have to reach the early majority with different methods, and seek them out. And where the early adopters would teach themselves how to use what you offer and what it is for, the early majority is different. You have to educate them and you have to make them feel comfortable with your offering.

So bloggers, now we have to understand that we need to go to the next audience and bring them in to us. We need to be explaining who we are and what we offer to people who are not going to just happen to discover us, which is what has happened up to now. We need to start marketing, advertising and changing from the insider focus we have had to a more inclusive, approachable "product" that they the next and larger group of people can easily understand. We can't expect the next level of audience to just somehow magically appear without us doing outreach to draw them in.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 4, 2007

Superpowers

Oliver Willis might be getting superpowers soon.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:50 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 29, 2007

Pilotless Drone

Never say "pilotless drone." Ever. There can be consequences. This guy might call you up and leave a message on your voicemail.

He needs to start a blog.

Through Engadget.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:47 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 25, 2007

Doing The RIGHT Thing

I want to get out a thought I have been working on.

For a long time America's politicians have needed to posture and pretend and play a game of saying things that every informed person understands are not true, but are mouthed in order to to "position" themselves aligned with their idea of the thinking of the broad uninformed masses.

The conservatives built up a power structure by building (and funding) advocacy organizations like Heritage Foundation and American Enterprise Institute - buying a movement - and progressives and their funders had not done that. So the conservatives have had this persuasion machine in place and progressives have not. The conservatives were able to use their machine to build up the "conventional wisdom" along the lines of their own strategic narrative. And so for a long time the public was, probably correctly, perceived to have been largely persuaded by conservative rhetoric, and the politicians had to speak to that.

So maybe for a politician it was a correct perception that you have to move right and "triangulate" and spout right-wing crap to get elected. You get this enormous demand built up by the right's unanswered propaganda, and at the same time you get this enormous conservative-engineered institutional pressure built up to vote a certain way on legislation. What else were politicians supposed to do?

Meanwhile progressives were not working to persuade the public, so there has until recently been little popular demand or respect for progressive policies and candidates. Sure, we want leaders to do the right thing, but we haven't been building up the mechanisms or creating the public demand that makes leaders do the right thing -- or that protect them, "watch their backs" and give them cover to do the right thing.

I think the blogs are starting to make a tremendous difference in our politics. They are holding politicians and the media accountable, and I think we're all starting to see the effects. They can't seem to get away with ANYTHING anymore because of these darn bloggers, and a lot of them don't like that one bit. But progressive politicians are learning that now there finally is someone out there - the blogs - working to persuade the public, and watching their backs, and applying pressure, and rewarding good behavior and punishing bad behavior. A power structure for progressive is being built.

So I think that one of these effects from the blogs is that doing the RIGHT thing rather than ridiculous posturing and perception games is starting to become the way to win elections. Or maybe I should say that the posturing and perception game to win elections and doing the right thing are converging - into the same thing.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:41 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 18, 2007

Another Right-Wing Lie - Bloggers and Lobbyists

The right is circulating another lie - don't fall for it.

The right-wingers are claiming that the Senate lobbyist reform bill would force bloggers to register as lobbyists. That is just a lie.

See Congress to Send Critics to Jail, Says Richard Viguerie

What the bill would really do is require those who are paid to lobby to register as lobbyists and disclose what they are up to. And they have to be paid more than $25,000 before they even have to do that. That the right-wing bloggers are so worried about this does say something, doesn't it?

There's also a comment on this at AmericaBlog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:37 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 17, 2007

Steve Gilliard On Iraq Civil War Possibility -- Written April, 2003

Looking back at how things unfolded this was brilliant and just spot-on. No one was listening. And unfortunately he was right and they were all wrong.

Daily Kos: How Iraq could devolve into Civil War

I'm not even going to quote from it - just read the whole thing and tell me if Steve didn't exactly predict what is happening now! Sure, it was obvious that things could spin out of control, but Steve described what has happened step-by-step, almost four years ago.

By the way, here is where you can read your Steve nowadays.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:20 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 11, 2007

Comments and TypeKey

I turned off the TypeKey requirement for comments for a couple of days, because I received some complaints that TypeKey was having some problems.

So now the site is besieged by comment spam. I'm going to require authentication now. You don't HAVE to use TypeKey but if it is your first time here and you aren't sing TypeKey comments will be held until I approve you as a commenter. Sorry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 9, 2007

Bloggers Leaving, Getting Real Jobs

Several bloggers have recently called it quits or are in the process of doing so. Read about it at skippy the bush kangaroo: ted barlow disease strikes again - a skippy musing,

let's face it, blogging is only slightly more productive than masturbation, and a whole lot less fun. unless you are one of the lucky more talented ones, like kevin drum, who gets paid for blogging, or lucky smart ones, like atrios or kos who have big enough audiences to command mucho dinero for their blogads, chances are you won't get paid enough for blogging to buy a 15 inch monitor.

so that means one of two things, if you're a blogger. you are either really stupid and like to waste your time writing inconsequential things probably nobody ever reads, or you are incredibly dedicated to your political ideals and believe you are making a difference, as well as being really stupid and like to waste your time writing inconsequential things probably nobody ever reads.

I left a comment:

The very night of the election I felt like that equation of urgency-to-blog vs necessity-to-make-a-living had changed. Our Nation Emergency was pushed back -- maybe by only a few weeks, we'll see what Bush does next... So I understand this.

I'm still blogging but the necessity of making a living really is ringing its bell in my hear now...

Note that zizka is a Real Blogger (meaning he couldn't stay quit). He's John Emerson at Seeing the Forest - very occasionally.

The fact is I don't make anything from blogging. It pays for my hosting service and bandwidth, but only barely. I'm going to need to find a paying job soon myself.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:21 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 8, 2007

Listen To Dave 9pm EST / 6pm PST

I will be on BlogTalkRadio along with James Boyce, tonite at 9pm EST (6pm in California) on The Alan Levy Show. You can listen in live.

Click to listen - at 9 est:
Listen Live

Update - go to home page at http://www.blogtalkradio.com scroll down a bit, and click on flashing "click to listen" icon.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:34 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 4, 2007

Eating Bandwidth

Last month something ate up a tremendous amount of bandwidth at Seeing the Forest, costing me a lot of money. So now I regularly check bandwidth use.

Why has 209.160.72.10, HopOne in DC, been eating a HUGE amount of bandwidth? Gigabytes! What are they doing? (I banned them.)

Why has 220.226.63.254, an IP in India, been eating a tremendous amount of bandwidth? What are they doing?

Why has 195.225.177.46, an IP in Ukraine, been eating a tremendous amount of bandwidth? What are they doing?

Why has 62.194.1.235 AND 83.170.82.35 AND 89.136.115.220 AND 62.163.39.183 AND 212.241.204.145, all from the same company in Amsterdam, been eating a TREMENDOUS amount of bandwidth? What are they doing?

Why is 206.225.90.30 and 69.64.74.56 and Abacus America Inc.eating a TREMENDOUS amount of my bandwidth,

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:43 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 24, 2006

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like...

Looksalotlikexmas.jpg
From the Johnsons!

Here is last year's card.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:27 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 14, 2006

It's Not The Bloggers, It's The Blogs

A quick comment on all the big-name pundits and Washington insiders who criticize "the bloggers" and question their legitimacy: Anyone can start a blog.

(pause)

Here is what I am saying. When you criticize "the bloggers" and question the legitimacy of what they are saying, you are questioning the concept of democracy itself. ANYone can start a blog -- so everyone is a blogger. If it makes you uncomfortable that the rabble is allowed to speak and express their opinions you need to think about your own understanding of and commitment to democracy. The blogs that reach prominence do so through an entirely democratic process - people have chosen to read or echo what is being written on them.

It's not the bloggers you have a beef with, it's the blogs themselves -- the tool that lets the public have a say.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:04 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 7, 2006

Sorry

My server is under a Denial of Service attack so you probably aren't seeing this...

Hello,

We're currently experiencing an attack on our server. A denial of service (DDoS) attack floods a network with an overwhelming amount of traffic, slowing its response time for legitimate traffic or grinding it to a halt completely. Our server administrators are working on the problem.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 4, 2006

Blog Title Of The Week

I just discovered this: Preemptive Karma: Dave Johnson is Full of Pig Shit

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:46 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 20, 2006

Smelling the Coffee T-Shirts

Smelling the Coffee now has a t-shirt store. (Seeing the Forest will be opening one soon.)

Just in time for Christmas and the Holiday Season!

espresso_face30pct.jpg

Click here.

And to see a picture of Espresso, the dog who modeled for this image, click here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:01 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 13, 2006

A Few Comments

My computer's working, and I've been collecting things to comment on. (But I did lose a lot of archived e-mail that I thought was backed up.)

The election. Remember, even with all the great polls we're still just hoping to squeak into a majority by a few seats. But the Republicans haven't really started spending their campaign money or executing their final campaign strategies yet. And they have a better get-out-the-vote machine-- especially don't count out the right-wing churches.

If the Dems get a majority, then what? Republicans can filibuster and veto bills. And if the Democrats actually DO investigate things, the Republicans have a massive propaganda machine. Remember what happened to Clinton and look at what is happening to Harry Reid today. There still is no "infrastructure" in pace to watch their backs, and to argue the progressive side to the public.

Harry Reid made a profit on real estate. Comment - in case you didn't know, we are in a huge housing bubble. It would not be possible for anyone NOT to make a $700,000 profit on a $400,000 investment made in 1998.

The Iraqi civilian death estimate. They took the death rate before the war and compared it to the rate after we invaded. This is not a direct casualty count, it is the increase in deaths attributable to our invasion. For example, someone who dies because he or she is unable to get medicine. Someone who dies from bad water because the water treatment olant was shut down because of no electricity.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:51 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Conservative Bloggers Won The Iraq War!

The War of the Words says that conservative bloggers and pundits (The Fighting 101st Keyboarders) are the true heros of our time.

This is a bit insider, but really funny.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:24 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 29, 2006

Friday Blue Cat Blogging

My mother's cat - in New York.

FridayCat1.jpg


FridayCat2.jpg

FridayCat3.jpg

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:12 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 26, 2006

Other Blogs

If you scroll down the left side of this page you will come to "Links to Other Blogs:"

What you have there is a list of LOTS of other progressive-oriented bloggers, all of them with something important to tell you.

I suggest picking a random blog, visiting and reading. You might find a new second-favorite blog. (Seeing the Forest WILL remain your first favorite.) It's a good habit to get into, because this is about the Voice of the People. Democracy. Sticking up for each other. Kumbaya. All that stuff.

(If you find a blog that has stopped posting, etc. let me know.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 23, 2006

OK, I'm Back

I'm back from New York and the Clinton Global Initiative. But I'm jet-lagged and exhausted - didn't get more than 4-5 hours sleep any night this week. So maybe not much blogging from me today, maybe not tomorrow.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 22, 2006

Meeting With Hillary

I just had a short meeting with Senator Hillary Clinton. I'll write more about this when I return home.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:59 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 21, 2006

The Wait

At 8:45 I got a rare seat in the press conference room for President Clinton's 9am press conference. It started at 10:15. Last week I was in a blogger meeting with President Clinton that went on for an extra 1 1/2 hours. (With a NY Times reporter cooling his heels in the lobby watching us through a glass window.) That was a good thing. THIS week I waited in a crowded hot room on the other end of that deal. Heh. I only hope he wasn't talking to the NY Times.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:15 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 20, 2006

Met Keith Olbermann

I met Keith Olbermann tonite at the press reception. I shook his hand in the name of all of my readers.

Oh yeah, Bill showed up, too, for a while.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

CGI - Bloggered

As you know, I am posting about the Clinton Global Initiative conference over at Live From The Clinton Global Initiative. That site is using blogger. If you have been reading Seeing the Forest for a while you know about the problems I had using Blogger - and the meaning of the word "bloggered."

Well, it's nice to see that Blogger is still having all the problems it used to have. It's down right now, and I can't post. It's bloggered.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Before the Conference

It seems that the blog is Back Up. Most of yesterday the server was down - which also means the posting server was down. Of course, if I wrote about the server being down you woldn't have been able to see it anyway -- because the server was down.

It’s 7:30am and I am in the press “filing” room. (I couldn’t find the “posting” room for bloggers, so I came in here.) I’m waiting for the IT person who is rumored to be coming to tell us all how to log in to the special wireless that is set up for us. It has a nice, strong signal, but requires an ID and password. If you are reading this you’ll know that I did, indeed, get an ID and password.

Security is very, very tight. First, there was a bomb-sniffing dog out front. The metal detectors are set to a sensitivity that even flagged the strips on the credit cards in my wallet. And there were at least seven Secret Service watching the process as we came in.

The press accommodations here are very nice. We have a special area with several rooms. There is coffee, soda, water and pastries. Across the street there is even a restaurant that is set up to feed us -- for free. This means that the Clinton Global Initiative will get Good Press.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:21 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 19, 2006

Live From New York

Well, live might be the wrong word - I've been trying to access the blogging software all day. (Has the blog been offline as well?)

I flew to New York yesterday evening, and now have my credentials to cover the Clinton Global Initiative. It is at the Sheraton Towers Executive Conference Center, not all that far from the United Nations. Needless to say, there were Secret Service all over the place when I was there this morning.

Along with posts that you will see here, I am also blogging over at Social Edge, at a blog they set up named ... well what else? Live From The Clinton Global Initiative

More soon...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 12, 2006

Bill Clinton Reads Blogs!

I just came out of a 2 hour meeting with Bill Clinton, with a group of bloggers. I'll have more later, and hopefully some pics.

Bill Clinton reads blogs.

Update - More here where I am second from the left in the group picture. Also here, with lots of pics. Here is a description.

Update - this just in:

mcjoan writes here and Bill Sher sent a pic:

DJandBCsm.jpg

Barbara from Mahablog writes.

More on the meeting at FDL, Feministing,

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:02 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 10, 2006

Travel Day Monday

I'll be on airplanes Monday, flying from SF to NY. I'll check in some time after I arrive.

Morning Update - Got through security in 5 minutes, and there's good wireless reception outside of the Admiral's Club. They have the same wiresless as Starbucks, so here I am for a while.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:47 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 7, 2006

What's All The New Stuff?

There's NEW STUFF here!

Some of the more observant of you have noticed something that looks like this at the end of every post:
Share this post: del.icio.us furl blinklist Digg it:digg shadows reddit blinkbits fark YahooMyWeb LinkaGoGo de.lirio.us blogmarks feedmelinks co.mments newsvine netvouz scuttle

Each of those little pictures is an icon that you can click to go to a service that lets you SHARE and RECOMMEND posts that you like with other people. If you hover your mouse over the ones at the end of a post (not these here), a message pops up telling you which service the icon represents. Digg is a well-known example of this, del.icio.us is another. They are free, you go there and see what other people are recommending, and (at Digg) you can "Digg it" which means adding a recommendation of your own. (Do you "del.icio.us it" at del.icio.us?) When enough people recommend something, it gains wider attention.

I suggest signing up at some of these sights. Then, if you see something here that you think more people should know about, click one or all of those icons, and go recommend it to others.

You also now see see a more prominent "Email this" at the end of posts. This is through FeedBurner. The old way is still there below the comments at the end of an individual post (which you see if you click "more," "comments" or "permalink"). If you think a post says something worth sharing, e-mail it to others.

I wrote about Spotlight the other day. Spotlight lets you bring a post to the attention of specific journalists with your own message.

Also, there is an ad between some of the posts now. Gotta pay for the bandwidth somehow.

Yes, the TIP JAR is still there.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:45 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 5, 2006

STF Joining Spotlight Project

Seeing the Forest is joining The Spotlight Project. This will enable you to forward an individual post that you think is important to several journalists by name, with your comments. Following every STF post, at the end of the line that starts with "Link to this," you will see a "Spotlight" link. Click that link, and you are taken to The Spotlight Project, and all the information about the particular post comes there with you. You then can choose which specific journalists you would like to send the post to with your message attached.

May I suggest that you start with this post about ABC's right-wing 9/11 propagana show. Click "Spotlight" in the line that follows the post, beginning with "Link to this". (Yes, the line in which the second item is "Tip Jar," where you can leave a few dollars when you like a post.)

This Spotlight demonstration page explains further.

Firedoglake wrote about the Spotlight Project here.

Crooks and Liars wrote about the Spotlight Project here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:51 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 30, 2006

Gas Prices Dropping for Election

Did I call it, or what? APRIL: Seeing the Forest: Bush Was BUYing Oil At These Prices!

This also means, by the way, the perception that oil prices are dropping just as the election approaches.
Did I call it? Come on, who's your daddy?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:15 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 27, 2006

Sunday Panda Blogging

panda.jpg

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:53 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 23, 2006

Great Video At The People Choose 2006

The other day I wrote about a new website, The People Choose 2006,

Think of it as a political YouTube for "citizen journalists" -- inviting regular people around the country to submit videos you make about your local Congressional races. Anyone can go to the site and view the videos, and use them on blogs, etc. Some of these will end up broadcast nationally on Dish and DirecTV.
I mentioned one great video they had already recieved, and today I finally figured out how to post a video from The People Choose. You have to click on the "JumpCut" in the lower right corner, and if you are logged in at JumpCut you see a "Post to Website" button... They will be added this directly to The People Choose website soon. (Still working out the kinks...)

Make a video and go upload it.

And here is "Married To the Man":

If YOU want to post this on YOUR blog, click on JumpCut on the video, log in, and click the "Post to Website" button to get the embed code. But PLEASE send people to The People Choose Site itself at http://thepeoplechoose2006.org/, not just to JumpCut.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:07 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 10, 2006

BLOGGERS! Wild In the Streets!!!

BLOGGERS GONE WILD! SAYING THINGS!!! SAYING ANYTHING THEY WANT!!!

The story that BLOGGERS had something to do with Lieberman losing was the lead-in story on the local news last night, before even news from Lebanon! The story featured some maniac named Johnson from a blog called Seeing the Forest, or something like that! He SAID stuff! On TV! A BLOGGER!

Be afraid! ANYONE can just get a computer, and write stuff! And then OTHER people will READ IT! And DO STUFF!

The world might come apart! There are NO CONTROLS on what these people say! ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROLS! They can say ANYTHING! And it can lead ANYWHERE! It can even lead to a CONTESTED PRIMARY! And they can even incite VOTERS to show up at the POLLS and vote AGAINST A SITTING SENATOR!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:14 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 9, 2006

SF News Tonite

If you're in the SF Bay Area I should be on ABC-7 11pm News tonite talking about bloggers and the Lieberman campaign. I just finished a short interview.

Mostly what I said was, yes bloggers helped trigger the Lamont candidacy, but the people of Connecticut were fed up. Blogs provided a channel for that to coalesce.

But the point I made repeatedly is that bloggers are just people - the public. ANYone can be a "blogger." Blogs are democracy. Blogs are just a means for people to express opinions and get involved themselves. There are no special, selected "bloggers" -- it is just democracy, the public, the people.

One thing I said wrong and I know they'll use is I referred to a "we" that looked for a candidate to run against Lieberman and backed Lamont early. I meant bloggers, not some group that I specifically was part of.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:39 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 1, 2006

Gone For A Few Days

I will be gone to Yosemite Wednesday through Friday, and might not be able to access the Internet from our motel. I thought I should post about this now, so you can begin preparing yourselves. For those who have trouble coping with this, I am trying to make arrangements with a national suicide hotline, and will post the number -- if I can work out a reasonably priced package. (If not you're on your own - maybe you should have hit the Tip Jar once in a while.) But either way, if things get really, really bad remember that I will be BACK Friday evening, and then everything will return to normal and be OK. Just keep that in your minds through the worst of it. Be Strong. Ride it out.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:52 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 26, 2006

Swift Boat Vets Money

I have a post up at Patriot Project today, THE BUCK STOPS THERE - The Story Of Who Really Wins When The Right Wing Raises Money about tracing some of the Swift Boat Vets money.

It's also at Huffington Post.

I'll post it here tomorrow.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:25 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 24, 2006

Site Back Up

The site is back up - it seems that "seeingtheforest.com" expired without anyone notifying me. But I just upgraded to a new version of Movable Type and am having some problems.

Meanwhile go see STF at Fox. Also, something interesting is coming for Patriot Project Wednesday.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:45 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 22, 2006

A Post Everyone Should Read

Daily Kos: What Did You Expect, America?,

Would you hire a babysitter who hates children and thinks they should be eliminated? Or who declares for years in your hearing that children are irritants who should be starved to be small, unseen and mute?

Would you hire cops who think laws are stupid and useless and should be abolished?

Would you hire a conductor for your orchestra who believes music itself an abomination?

Then why would you hire - and you did hire them, America; they are your employees, after all, not your rulers, despite their grandiose pretensions - members of a political party who think government is useless, ineffective, bloated and untrustworthy?

[. . .] In electing Republicans, America, you put people in charge of institutions they overtly, caustically loathe and proudly proclaim should not exist.

[. . .] Kee-rist on a pogo stick.

If you put people in charge of running a project they are ideologically committed to proving a failure, it will fail.

Oh, go read the whole thing.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:37 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 19, 2006

This Is Blogosphere Day

Please go read MyDD :: Blogosphere Day 3: Ned Lamont For US Senate,

Our message is simple. No longer will candidates be considered unelectable for holding progressive views. No longer will the establishment take its supporters for granted. No longer will Democrats get away with boosting their own national image by facilitating the conservative movement and distancing themselves from their own party.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:07 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 10, 2006

Update on Spam

I made a mistake in the numbers. I wrote yesterday that I'm getting about 8,000 spam e-mails since turning off my filters for a few days. Well, for the heck of it I didn't delete any spam for 24 hours, and checked the number. The number as of right now is 18,044, about 170 MB.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:00 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Writing About Things

A ot of times I don't write about things because I assume you have already read about them before you arrived at this little blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:45 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Why Blog

Atrios writes,

I do what I do because I actually give a shit about stuff, not to glorify myself (though just in case George S. is reading, I'm happy to be enriched.) Giving a shit seems to be alien to too many beltway pundits.
Exactly.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 5, 2006

Government and Party Merge, Part XXVII

You may have read the the Defense Department is monitoring blogs, because, "Blog research may provide information analysts and warfighters with invaluable help in fighting the war on terrorism." Sounds to me a lot like domestic political activity by the military. And someone who understands these things agrees with me.

Valdis Krebs is an expert on "Social Network Analysis. He writes about this Defense Department blog project at Network Weaving:

But, do terrorists blog??? Real terrorists with real plans? I doubt it -- especially after the Air Force press release above! However, people with political views and affiliations do blog.

[. . .] In a political war[the upcoming elections of 2006 and 2008?], the battling parties would like to know their opponent's structures -- how are they organized, who are the key nodes in their network, and where are their points of failure. With the no-holds-barred political strategies of today the following questions are being asked: Who do we discredit today? Where do we split the network so that it declines into ineffective fragmentation? Whose switchboard do we tie up? Who do we start rumors about? Who do we turn against each other? In other words, how do we disrupt the others from waging an effective campaign? These are all questions that can be answered beginning with link analysis of public information on the WWW. Link analysis tools and public data are available to all who desire them. Which leads to an interesting possibility... if the government is mapping the blogosphere, will the bloggers map the government?

Read the rest, and read his blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:26 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 28, 2006

Making Money

MyDD :: Stop Telling Me What To Write.

Read every word. Then hit the tip jar.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:38 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 25, 2006

Jacksnape

Digby, Digby, Digby!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 22, 2006

Coulter or Hitler?

I saw that Fox had Ann Coulter on today. Then i a ocmment I was introduced to the Hitler vs. Coulter Quiz.

Go see how any you get right. I got 8 of 14 correct.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:11 PM | Comments (23) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

The Public

I often think blogs and blog-readers are in a hyper-informed bubble. We are gaining influence with the DC insiders, and are reaching some people who influence the public. But WE are not reaching out very far yet. We need to find ways to reach a wider audience.

Meanwhile, America twists on under the spell of the wingnuts. Gun owners accuse UN of July 4 conspiracy,

Americans mistakenly worried the United Nations is plotting to take away their guns on July 4 -- U.S. Independence Day -- are flooding the world body with angry letters and postcards, the chairman of a U.N. conference on the illegal small arms trade said on Wednesday.

"I myself have received over 100,000 letters from the U.S. public, criticizing me personally, saying, 'You are having this conference on the 4th of July, you are not going to get our guns on that day,"' said Prasad Kariyawasam, Sri Lanka's U.N. ambassador.

... The campaign is largely the work of the U.S. National Rifle Association, whose executive vice president, Wayne LaPierre, warns on an NRA Web site (http://www.stopungunban.org/) of a July 4 plot "to finalize a U.N. treaty that would strip all citizens of all nations of their right to self-protection."

So the NRA just makes this shit up, and 100,000 letters are sent. (And the message ties right in to the John Birch Society Get US Out of the UN camaign.) Does anyone smell pre-election activities?

Looking at this ability to get the public going, and the kind of funding it takes, do you really think the Dems have a chance to take the House or Senate? Do you get what I am saying here? Remember the "Democrats are going to ban the Bible?" It worked.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:44 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Just Silly

I can't really say much about this except it's just silly. Someone needs to retire.

I've been thinking that big media doesn't even think of itself as informing the public in a democracy - it's just political entertainment. A commercial enterprise, period... The blogs come in to fill a vacuum.

Update - ">Peter Daou says it better than I can, today. Actually, he quotes a right-wing blogger who said it better.

"Tough sh*t! So after thirty years of writing this stuff in a bubble, you're finally getting feedback from people who are pissed off. Deal with it."

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:34 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 21, 2006

The Diary Rescue at DailyKos

I think the new feature at DailyKos, Open Thread and Diary Rescue, is one of the best things that has emerged in the progressive blogosphere. It's sort of like the Right's TownHall, except it's open democracy in action -- an open-source think tank journal of expertise and opinion, where regular people can get in front of hundred of thousands of readers every day! I love it! The diaries have emerged as a great feature, but the recommendations can tend to be based on who in known or has done a good job in the past. The Diary Rescue brings up great stuff that wasn't noticed.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Comment Troll

A certain person needs to get his OWN blog soon.

Discuss.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:13 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 20, 2006

Democracy Journal

Democracy Journal - A journal of ideas.

Hoping to emulate conservative success, Dem young guns launch journal of ideas

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:24 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 18, 2006

Blog Hero Award - YearlyKos Staff and Volunteers

I am awarding the coveted - COVETED! - Seeing the Forest Blog Hero Award to the entire YearlyKos staff and volunteers.

This post is an ongoing project. So please send me pictures of anyone I missed! Please let me know names to put with the pictures. Also, the pictures were taken at the end of YearlyKos, so everyone is tired. Please send me a better picture if you would like that posted instead. This post will grow, new pictures will be added, and some day it will be complete.

Here are the winners of the coveted Seeing the Forest Blog Hero Award:


Gina Cooper


Gina Cooper


fabooj


Bet


Janet


Shawn


Shanna


Andy


Steve Stearns


Randy


Linda


11


12


Diana


14


15


16


Sharon


Jon


Karen


Leah


Betsy


Jeri


Alisa


Christina


Christina and Nicole


Michael


28


Patty


Shel


Shashi


Janet


Janet, Heather, Colleen


Ken


Patrick


Robyn


Robyn


38


39


Joylette


Joylette


Chiton


Mary


46


Volunteer Photography Team

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:17 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 16, 2006

Just For Fun - Updated

Just for fun, let's try a trivia quiz. First one to answer wins - but please continue the discussion.

Promise not to look it up!

Who was the Vice-President of the United States in 1976?

Update - We have a winner. Now - what were the circumstances of his death? NO CHEATING - only answer if you haven't looked it up. Feel free to discuss however.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:03 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 10, 2006

YearlyKos - Building Progressive Infrastructure

Following are my prepared remarks to the YearlyKos panel on Building Progressive Infrastructure. Also speaking were Markos Moulitsas Zúniga, Jerome Armstrong and David Sirota: (There's a snippet of video here. I'll post a link to a complete video if it becomes available.)

Thank you for inviting me to come to YearlyKos to talk Creating Progressive Infrastructure. I’m Dave Johnson. I blog at seeing the Forest and I’m a Fellow at the Commonweal Institute.

One of the things the bloggers have been pounding on for at least a couple of years is the idea of building Progressive Infrastructure.

For decades you haven’t been able to go anywhere without hearing – over and over – that conservatives are good and liberals and their ideas are bad and stupid and shameful and evil – and a hundred variations on that theme. Have any of you encountered that message?

Conservatives are marketing what President Bush would call “conservativityism,” and doing it very well. And the broad, general public hears hardly ANYTHING in response from our side to fight back against that basic underlying propaganda argument.

How did it get to be that way?

Back in the 50s and 60s, in the decades following FDR and World War II, it was a time when most Americans agreed that it was good to help each other, pay their taxes, to help the poor, to send kids to public schools, to protect the environment – all those llllliberal things. America had a PROGRESSIVE CONSENSUS. And in that environment Progressive organizations grew up designed around using limited resources to get the important things done in those areas where everyone agreed things needed doing. At the same time, in politics Democrats could rely on a solid majority so progressive political operations were designed around getting their voters to the polls.

Reorganizing after Goldwater’s 1964 defeat, the Right accepted that this Progressive consensus existed and started to build up organizations designed to change people’s minds, to reach out and PERSUADE THE PUBLIC that their way is better. They set up marketing-oriented organizations that touted the benefits of a conservative approach and promoted social values that are compatible with conservative thinking.

They worked to get their message into the media, hiring and training people to write columns and articles and books and appear on radio and TV shows and go out around the country and give talks. They started training and paying people to work on campaigns and work for the people who got elected and to run for office themselves. They set up a media “Echo chamber” with conservative movement authors and commentators citing conservative movement “scholars” and “Institutes,” and so on, until their “reports” and “studies” seemed to have great credibility and seemed to be coming from every media outlet. And they established their OWN magazines and newspapers and radio shows and TV shows and later networks. And they always talked selectively about American beliefs and values in ways that made them seem truly conservative—they worked on changing how Americans thought about themselves and their world.

For more about the history of this movement go to commonwealinstitute.org/information.html That’s Commonweal like commonwealth without the th dot org, with '– /information.html' or look for the RESOURCES button on the Commonweal site that takes you to that information.

Today, the right is so effective because after 30 years of constant marketing and sophisticated use of techniques like strategic narrative and social desirability bias – and repeating that a conservative approach is better, and liberals are bad and stupid and incompetent and unpatriotic and evil, with almost NO COUNTER ARGUMENTS reaching them from Progressives, the public FOR SOME REASON thinks that Progressives are bad and stupid and incompetent and unpatriotic and evil, and that conservatives offer a better way! Imagine that – a public that is trained to respond to marketing has responded to 30 years of ceaseless, unanswered marketing!

And it’s like the Progressives just didn’t notice what was happening.

Suppose you built a car and your competitors spent millions advertising that your car breaks down or is unsafe, and you never advertise what’s good about your car – do you think very many people would BUY the cars you make?

So on the one hand you have Conservative organizations designed to attack and change people’s minds away from progressive values. On the other you have Progressive ISSUE-oriented organizations, built in another time, when everyone agreed with progressive values so they didn’t NEED to market to the public promoting the benefits of a progressive approach.

And here we are -- even now most progressive issue organizations STILL aren’t designed to reach the broad, general public and make the underlying argument that liberal and progressive values and ideas are BETTER – they are not marketing the benefits and the values, only issues.

How many times have you heard it said that if we just get the facts out about our issues, the public will support us. Well, that is not how marketing works.

Times change and the understanding that provides support for our issues has eroded.

Two Yale students, Jennifer Krencicki and Dahvi,Wilson, gave me a great analogy to help understand the advantage of marketing values instead of issues. They remind us about the GOT MILK? campaign. The milk companies could have all advertised their respective brands against each other, but they saw that their problem was that the public was drinking less milk overall. So instead of marketing their individual brands, THEY MARKETed THE IDEA THAT PEOPLE SHOULD DRINK MORE MILK. The result was that … well, people drank more milk --- and ALL THE MILK BRANDS saw their sales rise!

So we need to stop looking to every next election, expecting some messiah candidate to show up and lead us out of the wilderness and back to a majority status – and instead start thinking long-term and big-picture. We have to stop emphasizing narrow issues that split us apart, and start talking about the underlying values that tie our issues together. We have to stop focusing on our narrow issue silos, and follow the original American motto—“e pluribus unum”—because even though we progressives are many, at heart we are all one.

To be specific, we have to fund and build the kinds of organizations that market to the public the idea that Progressive values and a Progressive approach to issues – democracy and community, we’re all in this together – benefit the public more than a conservative “you’re on your own -- everyone out for themselves” approach. We need to fund and build organizations that train writers, speakers, TV and radio commentators, activists, leaders and candidates -- and other organizations that HIRE people so they can have careers and make a living fighting for OUR values.

I have focused here on one area of progressive infrastructure – marketing – to give an idea of the kind of things we are missing. There are other pieces of this pie that are in similar cirsumstances – political operations, training and recruiting, and providing ways to make a living. We need to build in these areas as well.

And, more than anything, we need to pay bloggers and pay them A LOT!!

If we do these things, over time, the public will come back.

Thank you.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:57 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

YearlyKos - Online For A Minute

I'm online for the first time today. Over 500! e-mails are now downloading, mostly spam. YearlyKos is ust amazing, great, lots hapening. I've been too busy to even access a computer before now. Had an hour-long meeting with Governor Warner with a few other bloggers earlier and I'll write about that when I can.

I'll also post my prepared remarks from ths morning's panel on Progressive Infrastructure with markos, Jerome and David Sirota.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 9, 2006

NY Times, For The Record

For the record, the NY Times story has an out-of-context portion of what was said. The converstation was that there were more press and politicians than people attending - which of course was true because yesterday was the "pre" day. YearlyKos didn't officially start until later with Kos' talk. In a longer conversation I said that because I had posted something about Nancy Skinner on my blog 10,000 more people are here now just for that one small piece of it.

My point was about the virtuality of all of this - the community around YearlyKos is very large, even if only some of us can afford to attend in person. This is an important part of what is happening with the "netroots" experience. The NY Times can try to make that look silly if they want to - we're here.

Here's a pic from Markos' talk:

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:03 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

YearlyKos -- Ethics, Corruption and Movement Politics Panel Remarks

Following are my prepared remarks to the Ethics, Corruption and Movement Politics panel:

Joe Trippi, Dave Johnson, David Sirota, Melanie Sloan
Thank you for inviting me to speak on this YearlyKos panel about movement politics and corruption. I’m Dave Johnson. I blog at Seeing the Forest, and I am a Fellow at the Commonweal Institute.

I’ll begin by briefly going over the origins of the modern Conservative Movement, from Goldwater to Heritage Foundation to Reagan to now.

After Goldwater’s 1964 defeat the far right built – or bought, really – a movement based on persuading Americans to think differently about themselves and the world. And I do mean the far right. How many of you remember the base commander in Dr. Strangelove, muttering about “precious bodily fluids”? Well that was the far right I’m talking about, and I remember them. Actually they aren’t really all that different now – they just hide it.

With really big funding they set up the beginnings of a “persuasion engine.” They started setting up dozens, then more dozens of what are called think tanks, like the Heritage Foundation -- built around marketing the (make quote signs with fingers) “ ideas” they generate. But all this effort wasn’t about ideas to solve the country’s or humanity’s problems -- Everything was designed to change the public’s political attitudes and make us more accepting of right-wing ideology.

Using the latest sophisticated marketing research into techniques – things like strategic narrative, the actions of similar others, social network analysis, and social desirability bias – they began endlessly repeating, in a thousand variations, the message that a conservative approach is better, and liberals are bad and stupid and shameful and evil.

Have any of you heard any of that – on the radio, or on TV maybe?

And they thought long term. They understood that the high school student they influenced today could some day be an activist or candidate. They understood that the junior research assistant they paid now would be the noted author or the influential columnist later. And they paid well – no point losing these people to the business world. You could make a LIVING being a conservative.

They also set up a huge media “Echo chamber” with conservative movement authors and commentators citing conservative movement “scholars” and “Institutes,” and so on, until their “reports” and “studies” seemed to be coming from every media outlet.

Eventually people started to think that there was a consensus of “experts” who all agreed that these conservative approaches were the only practical solutions to our problems. In short, they repeat marketing messages through multiple channels, over a sustained period of time, to create CONVENTIONAL WISDOM.

For more about the history of this movement go to commonwealinstitute.org/information.html That’s Commonweal like commonwealth without the th – look for the RESOURCES button on the Commonweal site, that takes you to that information.

The conservative movement didn’t just build UP THEIR ideas in the minds of the public. They also used their communications machine to tear DOWN their opponents -- organizations and political parties and even individuals.

Most people today perceive Jimmy Carter as having been a bad president. But let me suggest something. Knowing what we know now about how the right’s smear machine works, please go find and read President Carter’s so-called “Malaise speech.” Google the words “carter malaise speech”. Read that speech and you’ll see the signs that he was under attack by this right-wing machine that we are more familiar with today. We didn’t understand it back then but you’ll SEE it now. And knowing what we know now about oil and energy … you’ll cry. Especially when you see Al Gore’s new movie An Inconvenient Truth.

The reason this is relevant to this panel is that Carter was up against the machine, funded in part by the big oil companies. Their problem with Carter wasn’t ideological, it was only business -- Carter tried to reduce our use of oil – reductions that are so relevant today as we face Middle East wars, category 5 hurricanes and melting glaciers. Go read that speech.

This machine grew powerful -- they destroyed Carter - and then Mondale, then Dukakis, then Clinton, then Gore. Kerry went up against the machine and got the Swift Boating. Labor unions, environmentalists, teachers, civil and women's rights advocates, advocates for the poor, almost any group with the word "community" in its name, and so many others unfortunately also find themselves on the defense.


So, like I said the conservative persuasion machine and media echo chamber quickly moved past that initial far-right funding to also take in big corporate money. But corporate money is “interested” money – it necessarily has strings or it would not be given. And the strings necessarily go back to the interests of the corporation – not the public or the country – or even the conservative movement.

The movement followed the money and started to change from pure ideology to lobbying for the interests of the corporate backers. The think tanks began making arguments in support of what were little more than paying customers.

And so did their politicians.

For example, some of you have wondered why the logging industry are good Conservatives for cutting the trees, but the fishing industry, which depends on leaving the trees alone, are called environmental whackos. Ask, rather, who pays more?

(Personally, I always wondered why Jesus was in favor of capital gains taxcuts and dividend exclusions? But that’s another story)

Finally with Bush in office the lobbying turned to outright corruption, PURCHASING of legislation, regulation or deregulation, tax breaks, lucrative contracts and policy, by whoever offered the highest bribe.

So I have laid out some of the background that set the stage for the Republican corruption scandals you read about on the blogs. Also on the panel today is David Sirota, who has written a GREAT new book about this Hostile Takeover of our country by big money and corruption. So without further ado, let me pass the microphone to David.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:25 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

On For A Second

This is my first chance to get online today. I have pics from Markos' talk last night and Barbara Boxer's talk at lunch today, plus a few from the panel I was on this morning. I'll post them later - sorry.

One of the stories here is the is a huge gathering of people who know each other but have never SEEN each other. I JUST said to Stirling Newberry and Ian Welsh, sitting across a table from me, "Do any of you know Jane Hamsher? I want to meet her" and they both said at the same time, "That's her sitting almost next to you."

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 8, 2006

Stupid

Well Mr. Too-cheap-to-pay-for-Internet-in-the-room just came down to sit on the floor in the convention center lobby and post some pics from Markos' YearlyKos keynote talk, and realized I'm also Mr. Too-stupid-to-remember-to-also-bring-his-USB-cable-down-with-him so I won't be posting any pictures after all.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:49 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

MyDD Panel

More from YearlyKos -- I was just at the MyDD "Caucus" with Jerome Armstrong, Matt Stoller, Chris Bowers and John Singleton. It's the first time I met Chris Bowers, in fact I didn't even know what he looks like, and we're both Commonweal Institute Fellows!

Chris Bowers (Photo updated to a better picture)

Actually, it's still going on - I'm sitting on the floor across from the room. So this is pretty close to "liveblogging." In fact, the pics are still downloading from the camera.

Left to right, Matt, Chris, John (hidden) and Jerome

It was crowded, people out in the hall looking over shoulders.

A Congressional candidate I met earlier spoke for a second. He's running against Hastert in Illinois. You'll hear more about John Laesch and he is also a DailyKos diarist.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:33 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Seeing YearlyKos

Go to YearlyKos 2006 | Air America Radio to sign up to see YearlyKos streamed live.

I'll be on a panel titled Ethics, Corruption and Movement Politics tomorrow (Friday) morning at 9:30 PST. FYI Joe Trippi had cancelled but is here and WILL be on that panel.

I'm also on a panel titled Building Progressive Infrastructure Saturday morning at 9:00am PST with Markos and Jerome and David Sirota, right after Howard Dean's breakfast talk.

I'll post a transcript of my prepared remarks as soon as I get a chance after each panel.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:01 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

From YearlyKos

I'm posting from the lobby at YearlyKos, sitting on the floor, next to the bathroom, across from the registration desk. This is because they have free wireless here, and it costs a bunch to get hooked up in the rooms, and I'm really cheap. I'm WAYYYY too cheap to pay for Internet in the room when I can get it free by sitting on the floor in the lobby.

The convention is in the Riviera Convention Center, which is really big, so there are other events here at the same time. One event is a national billiards championship so there are all these huge ballrooms stacked full of pool tables, and a special room with three tables and all kinds of really nice sets for TV.

One funny thing - the next convention down from YearlyKos is named NSA. Maybe that's why there's free wireless in the lobby - makes it easier for them to tap in. Heh.

Arriving here, being in the line to check into my room, and heading to where YearlyKos is, I had a strange feeling like I sort of recognized lots of people. Yet I didn't quite. Of course, I did recognize the people I know, but so many other people that seemed familiar... why is that? And then in front of the registration desk for YearlyKos there's a crowd of people, but 're all looking at each other's badges for clues to who everyone is, because we all know each other from online but have never seen each other. I think you'll probably read the same observation at other blogs, and in diaries at Kos.

So tonite Markos is giving a keynote talk at 7:30 and I hope there's some food. I found a Subway across the street where I could get something vegetarian... I was with Mary from Left Coaster and Pacific Views, who said it's funny how Subway has become the default healthy place to eat when you're on the road.

Update - I remembered I brought a camers, and did the 3-mile trek to the room to get it. Here's where I was sitting:

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:40 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 5, 2006

See YearlyKos Online

Visit YearlyKos 2006 | Air America Radio to sign up to see YearlyKos webcast live, gavel to gavel, Thursday nght until Sunday.

It's $10. They have to move equipment to Vegas, set it up, pay people to operate it, pay for bandwidth, etc. And I'm on two panels, so its worth it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:45 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 30, 2006

Other People Noticed

May 17 I left a comment to the May 13 post titled, Net Neutrality and the Blogad, saying,

Readers - I can't verify whether these anti-regulation posts are from the same person or not. If not, it might show the kind of money being put into this campaign to simulate "grassroots."
It looks like I wasn't the only one with questions.

MyDD :: Fishy Commenters and Net Neutrality links to this post, Do Broadband Providers Employ Blog Comment Shills? which notices the same thing.

Over the past four or five months, I’ve noticed that a group of commenters to blog posts related to network neutrality tend to say the same things over and over again. What’s interesting is that there’s a core group of the same commenters that show up time and again saying the same things (although not always phrased the same way) repeatedly.
At MyDD, Matt writes,
There's nothing wrong with commercial speech, and it's even questionable that financial disclosures are terribly important. But hanging around in comment threads pretending to be a gang of ordinary citizens commenting on an issue while actually operating as a paid lobbying or marketing operation is probably over some unstated ethical line.
What do YOU think?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:31 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 29, 2006

Repeat - Starving Hysterical Naked

A repeat from December 1, 2004: Starving Hysterical Naked

Angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,

who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,

who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,

who passed through universities with radiant eyes hallucinating Arkansas and Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,

who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull,

who cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, burning their money in wastebaskets and listening to the Terror through the wall...


Dig?
Dig!
What the FUCK is he talking about?
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com

FYI I won't be as obscure as last time because everyone SHOULD read Howl, by Allen Ginsberg -- the whole poem is here and here. Looking for this, I discovered that May 20 was the 50th anniversary of its publication! Also even though it says zero comments at the old post, there are coments still there if you click.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 22, 2006

Site Is Back Up

I don't know where the server went, but it's back.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:26 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 21, 2006

YearlyKOS Video

YouTube - YearlyKOS

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:06 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 20, 2006

Who Are The Bloggers?

Matthew Yglesias, writing at Talking Points Memo,

One of the most neglected aspects of the blogosphere, in my opinion, is that precisely because it's (mostly) composed of people who aren't professional journalists, it's composed of people who are professional doers of something else and know a great deal about what it is they "really" do. Consequently, the overall network of blogs contains a great deal of embedded knowledge. The consensus that emerges from that process can, of course, be mistaken but even though the most prominent people expressing that consensus may not be experts in the subject at hand (the most prominent bloggers tend to be generalists), the consensus will almost always be grounded in some kind of well-informed opinions.
In another post, Matthew links to a blogger from 1775, who wrote,

Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death

Patrick Henry, March 23, 1775.

No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often see the same subject in different lights; and, therefore, I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those gentlemen if, entertaining as I do opinions of a character very opposite to theirs, I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve. This is no time for ceremony. The questing before the House is one of awful moment to this country. For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; and in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate. It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offense, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.

Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.

I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past. And judging by the past, I wish to know what there has been in the conduct of the British ministry for the last ten years to justify those hopes with which gentlemen have been pleased to solace themselves and the House. Is it that insidious smile with which our petition has been lately received? Trust it not, sir; it will prove a snare to your feet. Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with those warlike preparations which cover our waters and darken our land. Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation? Have we shown ourselves so unwilling to be reconciled that force must be called in to win back our love? Let us not deceive ourselves, sir. These are the implements of war and subjugation; the last arguments to which kings resort. I ask gentlemen, sir, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission? Can gentlemen assign any other possible motive for it? Has Great Britain any enemy, in this quarter of the world, to call for all this accumulation of navies and armies? No, sir, she has none. They are meant for us: they can be meant for no other. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging. And what have we to oppose to them? Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying that for the last ten years. Have we anything new to offer upon the subject? Nothing. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain. Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not been already exhausted? Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves. Sir, we have done everything that could be done to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned, with contempt, from the foot of the throne! In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation. There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free-- if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending--if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained--we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of hosts is all that is left us!

They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable--and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come.

It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace-- but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 13, 2006

Net Neutrality and the Blogad

There's an ad in the right column that reads "Don't Regulate the Internet." This ad comes from the telecoms/internet service providers who want to be able to decide which websites - and blogs - they will let you see. I initially rejected the ad, until I was reminded that I complain when TV networks reject ads because they disagree with the viewpoint. So I decided to take ATT's money -- and let you know what they're up to. I also linked to MoveOn's campaign, and put up a free Save the Internet ad. Go visit them.

Matt Stoller writes about this,

This time it's a negative hit piece, backed by a massive blogad campaign. The telcos, so you know, are spending millions of dollars a week on this fight. This ad is an example of it, repeating the lie that the government had no role in the internet's success and that bloggers are a bunch of irresponsible rabble.

... The ad makes a couple of claims. One, that web site operators don't pay for the internet. That is a lie. They pay massive sums of money for bandwidth, on the order of $10 billion last year alone. So does the public in tax subsidies for telecom companies, perhaps as high as $200 billion over the years (though it's hard to tell with all the mergers and weird accounting). Yes, that you read that right. Two, they claim they have never degraded a web site or service. Of course, executives for these companies are on record discussing their plans to do precisely that. The telco sponsored legislation would strip the FCC from being able to deal with degraded service or blocked web sites. Three, the telecom companies claim that net neutrality means intrusive government regulation. This claim is a bit harder to unpack, but it's worth following me here since what they are saying is in fact 180 degrees from the truth.

Go read the rest.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:09 AM | Comments (15) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 9, 2006

Wingnuts Catching On?

From a right-wing blog with the slogan "Elections and politics with a Conservative bent." PoliPundit.com : The Contradictions and Lies

Somebody please explain how the following statements can all be true:

1. El Presidente Jorge Arbusto opposes “amnesty” for illegal aliens

2. The Bushistas define “amnesty” as giving illegal aliens citizenship

3. El Presidente supports giving citizenship to illegal aliens

(Links to Washington Times story...)

My observations:

1) You discover Bush saying one thing and doing another? Welcome to my world. (It took you six years? Maybe there are vitamins or something you can take.)

2) You cite the Washington Times as a source for anything? The MOONIES? What's up with that?

3) The comments say the author is a RINO now. ("Republican In Name Only")

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:16 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 3, 2006

Swimming Pools, Movie Stars, YearlyKos

Have you signed up for yearly kos? TIME IS RUNNING OUT.

YearlyKos is a convention/gathering of blog readers, bloggers, "netroots" and other informed, involved people. Senator Harry Reid is the keynote speaker. Several other Senators, Members of Congress and Presidential candidates like Mark Warner will be there as well. Here are some details of the schedule and the guest list. Swimming pools, movie stars.

I'm doing two panels. One is a panel with Markos and Jerome, authors of Crashing the Gate, and David Sirota, on the subject of Building Progressive Infrastructure, Saturday June 10 at 8:30 am. The other is on Ethics/Corruption/Movement Politics, Friday June 9 at 10am. That's a reason TO sign up, by the way.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:06 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Online Integrity?

Online Integrity

Eight of the first ten "endorsers" link to Michelle Malkin. I conclude it is a joke or scam. No more time to spend on this nonense.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:36 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 28, 2006

Flight 93 Markets To Conservative Blogs Only

In MyDD :: United Flight 93 Chris Bowers asks why the new movie Flight 93 purchased ads on every "conservative" blog and no Liberal blogs.

I am the manager of the Liberal Blog Advertising Network, which has 86 member blogs that combine for 17.78 million page views per week. It is the second largest advertising network at Blogads. From what I can tell, not a single blog in that network features the Untied 93 advertisement that apparently was purchased on all 103 members of the Conservative Blog Advertising Network. That network has 4.37 million page views per week, just under 25% of our traffic.

Why did the marketers of United Flight 93 decide to only advertise on conservative political blogs? The Liberal Blog Advertising Network is four times as large, and is even a 20-30% better deal per page view (or CPM, to use the relevant industry term). Do they think that attack is only relevant to red America? Do they think that only Republicans were attacked on 9/11? Do they think that only conservatives remember that day? Do they think that the only people who took action on United Flight 93 had voted for George Bush one year earlier?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:37 AM | Comments (9) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 24, 2006

Really Funny

This is really, really funny. metacomments: The Emperor's New Clothes and the Fucking Blogger.

Through Atrios.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:57 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 20, 2006

Harper's New Blog

Thanks to eriposte for telling us about Harper's new blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:26 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 18, 2006

Slow Day

We have visitors from England, and we're taking them to the San Francisco Zoo today, so I won't be posting anything until later. I won't be awarding any troll hats, either.

Pick a few random blogs fro the blogroll in the left column to visit. That's the spirit of blogging - spread the love.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:32 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 6, 2006

Comments

Please try leaving a comment and e-mail me if there is a problem. Troll hats WILL be awarded on merit.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:52 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 2, 2006

Blog to Visit

Left In The Beltway

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 1, 2006

SPAM Comments

I just checked the comment spam filter, and I'm getting approx. 1 comment spam per minute. Mostly for poker sites. Lots of viagra... Almost all of these are caught in the spam filter so you don't see them. Apologies if you leave a comment that gets caught up in the spam filter.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 29, 2006

Shorter Kos

Shorter Kos: Don't like it? Tough shit. Learn to read.

I love that guy.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:49 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 27, 2006

AP Admits Stealing From Raw Story

MyDD :: AP Stealing from Raw Story

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:45 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 25, 2006

The Blogs' Message: The Nature Of American Government Has Changed

In Administration tells Congress (again) - We won't abide by your "laws", Glenn Greenwald lays it out:

The reality is that the Administration has been making clear for quite some time that they have unlimited power and that nothing -- not even the law -- can restrict it. ... As I have documented more times than I can count, we have a President who has seized unlimited power, including the power to break the law, and the Administration -- somewhat commendably -- is quite candid and straightforward about that fact.
I think this is the key line:

And the media continues to fail in its duty to inform the country about the powers the Administration has seized, likely because they are so extreme that people still do not really believe that the Administration means what they are saying.
This is the key. Maybe, just maybe, they mean the things they are saying. And I think this warning about the extreme things the Right is saying is a big part of what political blogging is about.

Blogs are an Internet phenomenon. So bloggers tend to be people who spend a lot of time online, and political bloggers read a lot about politics. So political bloggers are more likely than others to be visiting websites and forums where right-wingers more openly discuss their ideas, or are more likely to be listening to Limbaugh and others on the radio. And what we are reading and hearing is frightening. The things they are saying to each other are DIFFERENT from what they are saying to the public. The things they are writing and saying are extreme and violent and subversive. It is not like what we as Americans are used to reading and hearing.

The things the Republicans are saying and doing are so extreme that regular people refuse to believe it when you try to warn them about what is happening. For example, several years ago I had been reading the right's newsletters, forums and websites, and I was trying to tell my moderate-centrist aunt that the conservatives were talking about getting rid of public schools. She called ME an extremist for saying something like that. It's a natural reaction. But now, years later, we know that this is what their agenda has been all along, and like the frogs in heating water it no longer seems so extreme. Bringing this back to Glenn's post, if today you try to tell someone that an American President is asserting that laws do not apply to him, they think YOU'RE the crazy person in the room.

Bloggers are trying to warn the public that what is going on in America is DIFFERENT from politics-as-usual. The bloggers have been trying to get the Democratic leadership and the media to understand this. We are seeing something new to America forming, something dangerous to democracy. The "pendulum" is not swinging back. It is right there in front of your eyes if you are willing to see it, but it represents something so radical, so different from what we are used to, that it is difficult to believe this could be happening to us.

Yes, the President of the United States is asserting that he is above the law. The nature of American government has changed. The question is, who among us has the courage to stand up and say that we do not accept this? Who among us is willing to speak out, beyond the blogs? When will the media begin to understand what is happening, and start to warn the public? When will the Democratic leadership begin to realize that the extreme things the Republicans are saying might be what they mean to do?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:40 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 23, 2006

Jimmy Carter Blogging

Former President Jimmy Carter has a diary up at DailyKos today: Jack Carter - A return to America's Values,

There is a desperate need in America to block and reverse the radical departures from the moral and ethical principles that have made ours a great nation.

This is not a conflict between liberals and conservatives or even between Democrats and Republicans. The unprecedented changes in policy are from those of Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, Dwight Eisenhower, and also, of course, from those of Democratic presidents.

These changes involve the most basic aspects of America's moral values: peace, human rights, justice, the environment, fiscal responsibility, respects for the civil rights of Americans, the honoring of international commitments, separation of church and state, and the control of nuclear weapons.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

What She Said

Funk,

I can't get myself to write much about anything, it could be mental exhaustion brought on by the rising cost of gas and groceries or by the endless waves of cruel corruption rolling out of Washington.
Or it could be the hunt for a job...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 19, 2006

Just Enough Coffee Plus a Shot of Espresso

The other day at Smelling the Coffee, I linked to a video clip that shows what happens when you have had EXACTLY enough coffee.

Well, today Smelling the Coffee links to another video clip that shows what happens when you have exactly enough coffee AND a shot of espresso.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:29 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 15, 2006

Calitics

Calitics : California Politics. The Left Coast. Progressive California. A California politics blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:39 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 14, 2006

Raw Story New Look

I just noticed that The Raw Story has a new look.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 12, 2006

Bloglet Subscribers Look For FeedBlitz

If you have signed up to receive e-mail summaries of Seeing the Forest through Bloglet, you will start receiving them from FeedBlitz as well. Soon I will disable the Bloglet e-mails.

If you have not subscribed, you can subscribe to receive a digest of headlines of Seeing the Forest posts each day. In the right-hand column scroll down to Subscribe. There are several choices for services.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 7, 2006

Winning - Markos Introduction

Winning

Remarks by David C. Johnson, introducing Markos Moulitsas, Luncheon speaker at the Progressive Roundtable Convening, March 3, 2006

A lot of people want to know, who are the bloggers and what is it all about?

At places like The Washington Post lately they’re asking: “Who are these people?!”

I started my blog Seeing the Forest in 2002. Like many others I have been blogging every day since, usually several posts a day. I’m not paid to do it, and I don’t consider what I write a “product.” To me, blogging is about shouting “wake up!”

A remarkable thing about the progressive political blogs is that this phenomenon was all largely started by average citizens, men and women of all ages and ethnicities, all around the country, all fed up with what right-wing government is doing to the country and with the failure of the Democratic leadership to confront them.

And as traditional news media became increasingly concentrated in corporate hands with news analysis more and more reflecting corporate and right-wing “conventional wisdom,” the bloggers stepped in as “Citizen Journalists” filling the vacuum.

I have described blogs as a big, open-source think tank. One blogger posts an idea, people respond in the comments, other bloggers link in, and the original blogger responds. Ideas are generated, discussed, refined and – very important – widely disseminated at a very rapid pace.

Blogging is a true meritocracy in which the best thinkers and writers gain wide readership.

Which brings me to Markos, our speaker today.

Markos Moulitsas was raised in El Salvador, served in the US Army and earned a law degree from Boston University.

Markos started the website DailyKos in May, 2002, and it has emerged as the “top” politically-oriented blog. Currently averaging about 750,000 visitors per day, on a “big news” day the site can receive well over 2 million visitors.

But a progressive really knows you have arrived when the right-wingers call you nasty names. Markos is number 52 on Jonah Goldberg’s “100 people who are screwing up America.” The Republican Senatorial Committee calls him a “liberal extremist.” He has received the Daily Coward and the Weekly Jackass awards. And one site (ankle-biting pundits) writes that his postings are “an illogical, barely literate mess.”

We can laugh at that (I hope) because WE know that what right-wingers say is ALWAYS the OPPOSITE of the truth. Which makes that last insult a good segue to Markos’ IMPORTANT new book.

In the coming months you are going to be hearing a lot about the new book, Crashing the Gate, written with Jerome Armstrong of the blog MyDD. An information card about this book is included in your tote bag – I urge you to order a copy soon.

Crashing the Gate is about what we are doing here.

Crashing the Gate is about winning.

And I’ll let Markos talk about that. Please welcome Markos Moulitsas

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:54 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 6, 2006

Koufax Blog Awards Voting Open

And Seeing the Forest is on the list. You know what you have to do. Now you have to go do it.

Wampum: 2005 Koufax Awards --- Best Blog (Non-Professional)

The 2005 Koufax Awards: Most Deserving of Wider Recognition

The 2005 Koufax Awards: Best Group Blog

All the catagories are here, in case you also want to vote for other things.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 2, 2006

At A Conference

I'm at a conference for a few days, might not get much chance to post here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

McDonald's Premium Coffee?

At Smelling the Coffee.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:21 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

March 1, 2006

PLEASE TAKE THE BLOGADS SURVEY

Please click here and take the BlogAds survey.

This is important to help us build a progressive voice. If advertisers understand who is reading blogs they will be willing to put money into ads, and eventually bloggers can focus a bit more on what they do best instead of their pesky day jobs.

On question 23 please list Seeing the Forest as the blog that referred you.

This REALLY helps. Thanks!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:26 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 26, 2006

Comments Note

I am working on fixing the new problem where your comments are all smushed into one paragraph. Sorry.

Update - Multiple line comments are working now, but troll hats are gone. Still working on it - and there are some new comments that really deserve troll hats.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:41 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 24, 2006

Comments

Due to a massive increase in comment spam - they appear to have found a way around the spam filters - I'm implementing controls on comments again, for a little while. If you have commented before you are likely already approved. I can approve you as a commenter the first time - the coment will be held until I approve it -- or you can get a TypeKey account.

Please leave a comment to test if things are working.

This is temporary, I hope.

Update - troll hat is working now in the comments - go look in some of the comment threads. They are assigned on a comment-by-comment basis, and require me to edit the comment. It isn't automatic. Level 1 troll: , level 2 troll: , level 3 troll: (no hat, just gone.)

Update - by comment spam I mean ads for drugs, gambling sites, and really bad stuff. Wingnuts are welcome to comment here as long as they don't get abusive. But I am likely to put a troll hat on them. (By the way, posting obnoxious stuff just to get a troll hat is more likely to get you banned than get you a hat.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:22 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 22, 2006

New Feature -- Troll Cap

Introducing the Troll cap - Signal vs. Noise (by 37signals)

I'll be introducing this feature shortly. In two sizes.

Update - Well, I'll add it as soon as I can figure this out. Does anyone know enough about Movable Type to help?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:26 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 15, 2006

Prove It

Peter Daou issues a challenge to Rightwing Bloggers: Prove it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:42 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Libertarian goes to Starbucks

An interesting post over at Smelling the Coffee: A libertarian goes to Starbucks.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 14, 2006

A SEMINAL MOMENT IN BLOGLAND

Daou Report: A SEMINAL MOMENT IN BLOGLAND

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:17 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 6, 2006

Blog Viewing Problems?

I received a comment that this blog is not loading well in Internet Explorer. I thought I had those problems solved.

Please let me know of any problems you are having viewing the blog so I can address them. Let me know what versions and what computer (Mac, PC, etc.) you are using so I can take a look. Thanks.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:56 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

February 1, 2006

Live Blogging from McDonald's

Am I the only person in the world who didn't know that all McDonald's have free wifi? Someday soon, the entire world will have free wifi.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 6:44 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 31, 2006

Blogging the SOTU from the Grand Casino

Actually I am just following the SOTU from the Grand Casino Bakery & Cafe in Culver City. Culver City has free WiFi, so I didn't even have to search out a coffee shop, which also happens to be a bakery. Fortunately they have a terrific signature desert called Caja. It's right on Main Street in beautiful downtown Culver City. You can't miss it.

Someday soon the whole world will be free WiFi.

[Update: Grand Casino would not give me the recipe and even google could not pull up a dessert from Uruguay, but the ingredients were white cake, dulce de leche, peaches, chantilly cream and layered baked meringue. Next time I'm going to order two Chaja's instead of a Chaja and a Chocolate Mousse Cake.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 5:38 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 29, 2006

Happening

Several interesting things to read over at happening-here?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:09 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Controversy

Smelling the Coffee: Wi-Fi Table Hogs? Are people who bring their computers to Starbucks to use the wi-fi and work spending too ong at the tables?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:46 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 28, 2006

Democratic Rapid Response Team

I'm at the Democratic Executive Board Meeting in Manhattan Beach. I just attended a Media Rapid Response workshop and asked a couple of panelists to participate in a diary I put up at MyDD this morning.

No guarantees, but check out Democratic Rapid Response Team. David Sirota is the featured speaker, discussing the concepts in his new book Hostile Takeover. I'll add something about that later.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 4:18 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 27, 2006

Need Good Coffee Stories

Are any Seeing the Forest readers interested in writing up a good coffee story, for Smelling the Coffee? Let me know. You, too, can be famous beyond your wildest dreams. I smell a Nobel Prize for someone in this.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:43 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Comment problems again

For some reason some comments just aren't showing up. Others are. Especially on the housing bubble post. ???

If you leave a comment I'll do what I can to get it to show up. Apologies.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:05 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 26, 2006

At Blogs

The Mahablog : Points to Ponder on what it means if we let Bush abandon the 4th Amendment.

Soy Blue reminds us
of stories that the NSA was monitoring phone calls of Colin Powell and Bill Richardson at the request of Bolton,

In a case of art imitating life imitating art Gov. Bill Richardson and then Secretary of state Colin Powell had their call monitored by [John] Bolton (Bolton, as undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, was one of the architects of a hard-line approach toward negotiating with North Korea over dismantling its nuclear weapons program.)
Go read the rest over at Soy Blue.

Open Letter to Chris Matthews says to Ask Toyota, Verizon and TurboTax how they feel about "fag jokes"

This is all evidence of Chris Matthews' and MSNBC's lurch to the right. It is inconceivable why Toyota, Verizon and TurboTax would want to continue associating their brand with a man and a network who tell a "fag joke" and then don't even have the courtesy to apologize.
NDNBlog has their usual morning roundup.

Everythng at The Left Coaster, of course.

TalkLeft asks,

As President Bush crows about his success in bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq, perhaps he can explain why Kamal Sayid Qadir has been sentenced to 30 years in an Iraqi prison for criticizing corruption in the Kurdish leadership.
How far are we from that happening here - jailed for talking about Bush/Republican corruption?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:39 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 25, 2006

Another Open Letter Blog - Addressing Washington Post

I hope you visited Open Letter to Chris Matthews. Now you can visit Open Letter to the Washington Post

And from the blog, some news:

Today, the WashingtonPost.com will have a live event to talk about how comments should have been handled and could be handled in the future, if and when the Post decides to bring that function back online. They've entitled the event: "Panel: Ethics and Interactivity."

The event will be "moderated," with readers asked to send in questions before it begins, which started yesterday.

JANE HAMSHER [firedoglake blog] will be participating in the Post event, which begins at 10:00 a.m./Pacific, but she'll be at a different location. Comments received on firedoglake will be not be subject to a moderator. It will be free speech in action.

So go visit firedoglake and leave a comment.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:30 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Comments

OK I ratcheted the comment spam filter back down so it will move fewer comments into the "junk" list. Sorry.

I might change to "authenticated" comments, which means you will have to be approved or registered at TypeKey.

I'm getting more than 2500 spam comments a week, with the filter catching most of them now, but it's filtering out too many of YOUR comments and we can't have that.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:27 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 24, 2006

Today's Best Post Title

The Left Coaster: Tweety Fluffs The Hammer

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

New Blog About Coffee

(Bumped to top for a while because of this post's importance to humanity of the Starbucks vs Peet's debate.)

I'm starting a new blog about coffee, coffee shops and chains, the coffee-shop experience, using a coffee shop as an office, wireless, computers, anything coffee-related, and dogs.

There's not much there yet, but please visit Smelling the Coffee.

And send me news and tips on what to write about. Thanks.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:46 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Local Blogger Makes Good

STF bogger Meryl Johnson, (who hasn't posted here for a while), is one of the Top 20 Finalists in the Gather Short Fiction Competition, for Dark Songs,

There were over 400 submissions to the Gather Short Fiction Competition, and the entire Short Fiction Team agrees -- narrowing them down to 20 was no easy task.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:58 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 23, 2006

Welcome Echo Chamber

New Blog: Echo Chamber,

Today AlterNet launches a new blog, Echo Chamber, that will cover how progressive ideas and issues are communicated and gain traction in the overall media universe. We'll be looking closely at language and framing, and media initiatives and ads like Moveon.org's much-needed campaign against corruption in Washington, D.C. We will also spotlight progressive media figures, events, new books and films, and happenings in the blogosphere.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 21, 2006

The Fall

Go read johniwanski.com ----- (aka Iwanski Blog): Legend of the Fall

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:14 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 20, 2006

Comments

I just restored a bunch of comments that had been designated junk. Sorry. I set the filter to a higher level and I'm not sure it's filtering any more spam than it was, about 10 got through today which is about the same as before... On the other hand 2745 spam comments were caught in the last 5 days... Yes, it's that bad.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

More On Matthews and Apology

A blog has been set up for people to post public comments complaining about Chris Matthews "bin Laden" comments. MSNBC will be aware of and monitoring this blog.

Please go to this blog and leave a comment. This is an opportunity to make noise and get something done about the way Democrats and liberals are openly badmouthed. This is about accountability in a democracy.

To Chris Matthews,

Yesterday, you compared Michael Moore to Osama Bin Laden. Michael Moore is an American filmmaker. Osama Bin Laden is a terrorist who murdered three thousand Americans. This type of McCarthyite smear has no place in American journalism, let alone on a major TV network.

You owe Michael Moore, and the American public you serve as a journalist, an apology.

MSNBC doesn't allow public feedback on its web site. I have therefore set up this blog as a public forum for discussion about this unfortunate incident. Please keep commentary civil.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:28 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 19, 2006

Comments

Well they've broken through the spam filter again, so I've bumped up the spam filter a notch. This means that comments with URLs might be flagged. Also, if your comment says, "Adult pleasures available at..."

If you leave a comment and don't see it after a refresh or two, it might have been flagged as spam. Please e-mail me if this happens and I'll un-junk it as soon as I get your e-mail. Unless it says says, "Adult pleasures available at..."

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:37 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 13, 2006

Mac World Expo Today

I will be away all day, attending Mac World Expo in San Francisco.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:14 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 9, 2006

Corporate Efficiencies and Not

There's a corporate clock that ticks and corporate computers that grind, and a schedule to follow.

I remember when Salinas, California passed 100,000 population. It was a sleepy half-Mexican Ag city with an old downtown and independent stores. And then the 1990 census said it passed 100,000, a computer was alerted, a bell went off at a marketing person's desk and the Wal-Mart and the Target and the Outback and the entire rest of the strip-mall scene just arrived the next day. The immediate transformation of the city was really something to see.

I'm at a Starbucks. I noticed the whole place is color-schemed and stocked for Valentine's Day. The displays have pink-heart Starbucks mugs for sale. Even the coffee-cards are pink with hearts. I asked when this showed up and they said Jan. 2. So the DAY after New Year's they were starting full-on selling Valentine's. Corporate commercialism is America's religion.

And then there's Peet's. Great coffee but you just can not GET them to get wireless. The employees say every third customer asks. Many days I get a Peets and drive to a Starbucks and use the wireless from the parking lot.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:59 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 7, 2006

Lost Post

I wrote a whole post about the Consumer Electronics Show, and somehow instead of saving it I closed the wndow and it's lost. I'll try to write it again soon. Sheesh.

It started out by saying I had 253 e-mails waiting for me this morning, went out of coffee and walking the dogs, and at noon there were 63 more...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:58 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

January 5, 2006

Away Friday

I will be at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, leaving here at 5am and not returning until long after midnight. No news, no blogs...

Click on several random blogs from the blog list in the left column - especially ones you have never visited. You'll find plenty of good stuff.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:01 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 27, 2005

Meme of Four

Four jobs you’ve had in your life: Video game designer, think tank Fellow, company president, VP Marketing
Four movies you could watch over and over: Repo Man, Apocalypse Now, Babe, 2001
Four places you’ve lived: Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Santa Cruz, Redwood City
Four TV shows you love to watch: Carnivale, Rome, Law and Order, South Park
Four places you’ve been on vacation: Cabo, Banff, Iowa, London
Four websites you visit daily: DailyKos, BopNews, TPM, STF
Four of your favorite foods: Indian, Thai, Japanese, Santa Cruzan
Four places you’d rather be: Santa Cruz, England, Paris, Iowa

I pass it on to Bob Geiger, Mary, eRiposte, Bob Brigham

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:37 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 24, 2005

Holiday Reading

Obviously I'm not posting much right now. If you are sitting around bored and need your Forest Fix, I suggest the "Best Of" down at the bottom of the left column. In particular, this one is as relevant as ever, will scare the BJesus out of you and outrage you at the same time (whch IS why you come here, no?): Worse and Worse - Country in Crisis,

Elected Democrats and moderate Republicans keep letting far-Right conspirators off the hook, and failing to expose the true nature of their activities to the public. Perhaps this is because they honestly did not and do not recognize them for what they are. Some of Nixon's cronies went to jail -- none of Reagan/Bush I's. Worse, the Carter and Clinton administrations did not ask for a full accounting of the transgressions -- political and financial -- of the prior administrations. In a way, this signaled to the public to expect such activities as part of "business as usual." By allowing the Right to publicly get away with an "everybody does it" excuse, the legitimacy of our democratic form of government was eroded.

... I think it is hard now to avoid seeing the true nature of the group that has taken over the Republican Party. The record is certainly clear, their intentions are clear, their activities are clear, and it's time to take a stand. After seizing control of the country by the narrowest of margins in 2000 the Republicans have illegally excluded Democrats and the public from almost all aspects of management of the government. They have positioned ideological agents throughout the departments, agencies and the courts. In one of their first acts in power they allowed companies like Enron to "harvest" the people of California and Oregon, and appointed FERC members would not do their job to stop this. Their tax cuts, that went to only a few, have bankrupted the country and spent our Social Security retirement money. They have handed out our country's natural resources, and given the right to pollute our air and water for profit to a few rich cronies. They have launched aggressive war in an imperialistic scheme to bring the Middle East's oil supplies under their control.

... We have to realize that we are dealing with an organized revolutionary conspiracy to seize power, enrich the few, and subject us to an ideological/theocratic/imperialist dictatorship. They often describe THEMSELVES as being modeled on the old Communist Party and their methods for infiltrating and seizing power.

"You cannot cripple an opponent by outwitting him in a political debate," he explains in The Art of Political War. "You can do it only by following Lenin's injunction: 'In political conflicts, the goal is not to refute your opponent's argument, but to wipe him from the face of the earth.'"
This is an emergency and we must recognize it as such. These people will go to all costs to succeed, including fomenting civil war.
With today's NSA spying in mind, this from written a year-and-a-half-ago:
Let's look at it this way for a minute. Suppose that the intentions of the Bush people are entirely on the up-and-up. But looking at the way they have eroded accountability, oversight, and constitutional protections, suppose some OTHER people, with less-than-honorable intentions, examine these openings and see this as an opportunity to step in and seize power. The mechanisms for this are all in place, including the mechanisms to squash opposition and dissent. The Patriot Act, for example, allows the government to spy on anyone the President designates as an "enemy." And new technologies enable comprehensive tracking of a person's every action. We already have a precedent of Congress looking the other way and avoiding their oversight responsibilities no matter how extreme the transgression. We already have the precedent of the Justice Department covering up instead of investigating crimes. We already have the precedent of the Courts overruling law in favor of ideology.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 23, 2005

Heretik

The Heretik has a new site.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:23 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 21, 2005

Sideshow

Have you been to The Sideshow lately?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:04 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Koufax Weblog Award Nomination Still Open

In you know of any blogs that you want to nominate for an award, go to Wampum: New Koufax Nominations thread.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:21 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 20, 2005

Why YOU Should Advertise On Blogs

This is a slightly rewritten repeat of a post from November, dedicated today to Digby.

A company pays a lot to advertise in magazines. A 4-color, full-page ad in a major computer magazine that "reaches" about a million readers costs about $77,000, and costs more than $108,000 for a cover. That is for one ad in one issue of the magazine. (I'm using a computer magazine because I have easy access to the rates.)

An ad that runs for a week on every blog in the "Advertise Liberally" BlogAds network is seen 12,726,453 times and costs $9034 to run.

Let's compare the ad in the magazine with the ad on the blogs. The computer magazine ad is buried in how many pages of other ads? How many times is the reader likely to see the ad while turning the pages of the magazine? How long is the reader likely to have the ad in view? Does the reader see the ad more than one time, if at all? And how can you measure the effect - the response - of the ad?

In contrast, the blog ad is in front of the blog-viewer the entire time the person is reading the blog, and is there every time the reader comes back. (If anyone had actually PLACED any ads at Seeing the Forest right now you could look over on the left or right column right now to see what I mean about visibility.) And it is again in front of the reader when he or she visits another blog, because blog-readers don't just read one blog. And the advertiser can tell how many people are responding to the ad.

Let's add that up.

  • Magazine: about a million potential-maybe half-second peeks at your ad for $77,000
  • Blog: TWELVE million in-your-face, several-minutes-long, unburied exposures for $9,000
OK, this is too difficult for me to figure out -- leave a comment that helps me make a decision.

Compare the visibility gained from a blog ad compared to almost any other form of advertising. And then compare the cost.

I'm comparing blog ads to computer magazine ads here, but wait till you get a look at the rates to advertise in other kinds of publications or other advertising channels. Let me point out that every single blog-reader is also a computer-user. But they also drive cars, eat food, listen to music, wear clothes and go to movies. And they do lots of other things, too.

You can advertise on Seeing the Forest for one week for $40. The ad will be seen over 25,000 times. The new Premium Placement spot on the left is $75 for a week

Do you have a product, service or message that you want Seeing the Forest's readers to see more than 25,000 times?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:47 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 18, 2005

Serenity

I've been writing lots of scary stuff lately.

So take a look at cute kittens and puppy dogs.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:45 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 16, 2005

What Is He Talking About?

Someone tell me what he's talking about, please?

The Heretik: SUNSET ON THE BAY OF CONFUSION

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:41 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 15, 2005

Blog Awards

The 2005 Koufax Awards -- Nominations Are Open.

The Koufax Awards are named for Sandy Koufax, one of the greatest left handed pitchers of all time. They are intended to honor the best blogs and bloggers of the left. At the core, the Koufax Awards are meant to be an opportunity to say nice things about your favorite bloggers and to provide a bit of recognition for the folks who provide us with daily information, insight, and entertainment. The awards are supposed to be fun for us and fun for you.

Please try not to take the idea of winning and losing too seriously. We hope to help build and promote a feeling of community among lefty bloggers. The primary rules of the contest are be nice and have fun.

Head on over and nominate you up some blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

December 6, 2005

Great New Blog

Welcome Talk To Action | Reclaiming Citizenship, History, and Faith -- exploring and countering the agenda of the christian right.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:31 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 30, 2005

Cute

Hedgehog babies.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Just Discovered: Truthdig

I just came across Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines. Looks good.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:09 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 29, 2005

Too Much Popular

Some of you probably noticed that Seeing the Forest exceeded its bandwidth a few times this month, including today. Each time this happened I increased the bandwidth, but the site has had lots more visitors lately, I have been using more pictures, and the new graphic banner has a bandwidth cost.

I'm taking steps to help keep this from happening. Fewer entries on the front page, pay for more bandwidth, etc. Apologies.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:54 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 23, 2005

Another Blog Award

The Weblog Awards: Nominations - Best Liberal Blog Archive.

If you want to nominate Seeing the Forest, go right ahead. I won't stop you. Its RSS is http://www.seeingtheforest.com/index.rdf

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:51 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 22, 2005

American Street -- 3 Years Tomorrow

American Street: Nearly three years down and more’s a-coming

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:24 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 21, 2005

Blog Fight!

Confederate Yankee: Aid and Comfort. Go state our side of the story.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:39 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 18, 2005

Reflections on Blogging to the Millionth Degree

If I had a dollar for every time someone has visited Seeing the Forest… I’d have a MILLION DOLLARS!

But I’m a Progressive blogger, so instead of being rich I have a day job. I once said that blogging really got going when so many people were laid off after the dot.crash. There's a lot of truth to that. Back then almost every blogger I was in contact with was unemployed. It's what gave ME time to get started. (Remember Odd Todd? He wasn't a blogger, but his excellent work is another example of what I am talking about.)

Every time you get one or more bloggers (or Progressives) together the talk turns to how people can’t make a living supporting the Progressive cause. Now there are a few bloggers making a living from ads, but those are rare exceptions. Blogging is done out of an inner need – more like a desperate drive – to say what we say. I know bloggers who are sacrificing a good income just to keep blogging and otherwise working for Progressive candidates or issues, but they are single and most don't have kids or health costs and have some way to keep going. But most people have families or other costs and responsibilities and it is a shame that the culture of Progressives does not include making a decent living from a commitment to helping.

The subject of pay for Progressives is an important subject about which I plan to be writing much more, but one comment now: One reason the Right is so successful is they understand that people naturally have priorities and one of those is making a living. From the Introduction to The Attack on Trial Lawyers and Tort Law,

This web of right-wing organizations funds and supports many other voices that speak on behalf of tort reform and other issues. The people who write the books are funded. The people who write the op-ed pieces are funded. The people who speak on radio and cable TV shows are funded. The people speaking to public interest organizations are funded. Even the people who initially write many of the templates for letters to the editor are funded. In addition to funding these individuals, the right-wing organizations provide them with institutional bases and access to publishers and media.
In fact, there are a number of (most?) very good writers, lawyers, politicians, operatives, etc. who working for the Right solely BECAUSE of the pay. This doesn't say good things about the content of their character, but they are smart and talented and the Right benefits -- the rest of society suffers the results. In contrast to this, Progressive organizations, when they can pay at all, are only able to offer about 1/3 of what I make in the "private sector." This is a problem that we have to solve. As I said, more on this subject later...

Focus
I have learned that it is very, very hard to have more than one main focus. Your main focus ought to be your main forcus. I’ve been blogging for more than three years, writing several posts most days, and many of those much more substantial (see "best of" in left column) than just dashed-off stuff about my dog or blogging from a car. (Though I did make history as the first person ever to post a picture of his dog (and here) from a National Political Convention and they can't ever take that away from me. Heh.) Newspaper columnists write a couple of columns per week, and get paid a lot. I still try to write several posts each morning before I have to attend to my other main focus but I know that my blogging - and thinking - has suffered since I took the tech job. (Vice President’n is hard work. It’s haaardd.)

ANYway ... here is what I would do with a million dollars…

I would blog full-time with more substantive posts. I would do more research, write more reports, do more to advocate building a Progressive Infrastructure to counter the Right. Along those lines I would give Commonweal Institute a bunch of money for general operating expenses, so they can launch their mission to bring to the broad general public positive information about the benefits of Progressive values and a Progressive approach to issues. The hope is that this - along with the same from many other organizations - will begin to counter the long-term propaganda campaign from the Right that has been relentlessly promoting conservatism, right-wing values and right-wing candidates. Over time this will bring back the public consensus that government is good, public schools are good, it's good to help the poor, war is wrong, it is a good idea to protect the environment, etc.

Of course I would give a lot of money to other organizations, as well as help out bloggers. I'd help them buy blog ads, for one thing, to announce things that people need to know about.

What would YOU do to help the Progressive cause, if you had a million dollars? Discuss.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:50 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 16, 2005

A Million Soon

Later today Seeing the Forest will cross the milestone of a million visitors since its launch in July, 2002.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:21 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 11, 2005

Making Shit Up

I wonder if the common practice of right-wing blogs to just make shit up -- in this case saying the white flags are about "surrender" -- is about trying to trick people into believing "their side" is better, or is just about being outrageous enough to draw traffic to their sites, which increases their ad revenue? Of course, I just helped, didn't I?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:43 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 5, 2005

Around

Everything at BAGnewsNotes. I haven't been visiting Slactivist enough lately. eRiposte has more on the Niger forgeries. Grannyinsanity is on the edge. AlterNet . Lots at American Street

And a bit of humor for a Saturday: Bush Orders Staff to Attend Ethics Briefings (without firing Rove -- and letting Libby resign instead of being fired.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:50 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 4, 2005

Advertising On Blogs

A company pays a lot to advertise in magazines. A 4-color, full-page ad in a major computer magazine that "reaches" about a million readers costs about $77,000, and costs more than $108,000 for a cover. That is for one ad in one issue of the magazine.

An ad that runs for a week on every blog in the "Advertise Liberally" BlogAds network is seen 19,161,956 times and costs $8885.50 to run.

But let's compare the ad in the magazine with the ad on the blogs. The computer magazine ad is buried in how many pages of other ads? How many times is the reader likely to see the ad while turning the pages of the magazine? How long is the reader likely to have the ad in view? Does the reader see the ad more than one time, if at all? And how can you measure the effect of the ad?

The blog ad is in front of the blog-viewer the entire time the person is reading the blog, and is there every time the reader comes back. And it is again in front of the reader when he or she visits another blog, because blog-readers don't just read one blog. And the advertiser can tell how many people are responding to the ad.

Let me point out that every single blog-reader is a computer-user. They also drive cars, eat food, listen to music, wear clothes and go to movies.

You can advertise on Seeing the Forest for one week for $50. The ad will be seen over 35,000 times. The new Premium Placement spot on the left is $75 for a week

Do you have something that you want exposed more than 35,000 times? (Yes, I know, go ahead, say it in the comments.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

November 1, 2005

Tall




Redwood tree

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:22 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Subscribing

(Bumped)

Subscribers receive a daily "digest" containing a short summary of each day's Seeing the Forest posts. You can subscribe using one of the services listed under "Subscribe" in the right-hand column here. You just enter your e-mail address and click "Subscribe."

If you subscribe to Seeing the Forest through Bloglines, please re-subscribe using a different service. STF will no longer be supporting Bloglines.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 29, 2005

Too Popular?

Seeing the Forest got shut down overnight for exceeding our bandwith allotment. It's all fixed now, and I am upgrading the plan.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:57 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 27, 2005

Colors

Do the colors work, or should I go back to the green?

Update - OK, how about the left side still green but the right side changed?

Update - OK, how about with the right-side color on the left as well?

Update - OK, now with the same on both sides, but a lighter shade. I might like this one.

Update - OK How about the pink?

Update - OK back to green on the sides. Maybe if I change the pic so the colors match?

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:52 AM | Comments (21) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 23, 2005

Sunday Reading

There's a bunch of great stuff over at The Stakeholder today.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 22, 2005

Visit Lots of Blogs

That blogroll over on the left is just chock full of great places to visit. Click on two or three that you have never visited. You never know what you'll learn next.

I try to add every Progressive-leaning blog I come across to the list. (It's set up now to bring up the list in random order.) Leave a comment here if you know of a blog that should be added, or if you find an outdated link or a blog that isn't being used anymore. (I don't have time to visit all of the blogs regularly anymore.)

And I'd appreciate it if blogs I link to added Seeing the Forest to their own blogroll, please.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:30 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 21, 2005

Friday Buddy Bed Blogging



And of course we can't forget Espresso.


Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:25 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 20, 2005

E-mail Subscriptions Are Back

Apologies to everyone receiving Seeing the Forest by Bloglet e-mail subscription. I don't know what happened but Bloglet stopped sending out your e-mails a few days ago. It's fixed now.

Subscribers receive a daily summary of STF posts. To subscribe just type your e-mail address into the space in the right-hand column, where it says "Subscribe" - just under the ads. You can also subscribe with Feedster or Bloglines by clicking on their buttons.

ALSO Did you know you can e-mail any STF post to friends (or even not friends...)? If you click on Link to This or Comments under any post, there is a place uder the coment-entry box for sending that post.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 14, 2005

Place An Ad

If you sell something and want thousands of people to know about it, place an ad at Seeng the Forest. For $40 for a week or $70 for two weeks you could have your product or service in front of thousands of Seeing the Forest readers. Compare this to $3500 for an ad in a small magazine or thousands for a TV or radio ad.

If you want to go further, and reach a serious number - over 1 MILLION page views each day - of LIKE-MINDED people for a fraction of what it would cost to place a magazine, TV or radio ad, use the Advertise Liberally network.

Also see this and this about ads and blogs.

Update and this.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:37 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Please Comment. Seriously.

What she says.

We are just the "starter culture." We're here to stir things up, and get the conversation started. Only, it isn't a conversation unless you add your 2 cents, too.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:24 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 8, 2005

Comments Problems

Request: could everyone reading this please leave a comment, so I can work on the problem? If it doesn't show up right away it will show up later.

I'm still trying to figure out problems with comments. For some reason it is filtering most comments into a "junk" catergory until I come along and manually move them. This happens even when I have set the commenter as someone to "trust". Anyone already registered with TypeKey is able to leave a comment that shows up immediately. Does anyone know enough about Moveable Type 3.2to help figure this out?

Update - One thing is for sure. If you register with TypeKey you don't have any problems leaving a comment - here and other blogs.

Update II - I found out there is a "junk threshold" setting and I had it set to 5, which seemed reasonable. But maybe you all need to have better opinions because that might be why it was junking so many comments. I changed it to 2 and will try it lower if need be.

Update III Threshold of two didn't work. Several comments junked. (I had to manually unjunk them.) So now it's one. A filter that rejects everything (except typekey registrants) when it's set down to two is pretty much useless.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:21 PM | Comments (24) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 7, 2005

Comments Open Again

I have upgraded to a Movable Type 3.2, which is supposed to have some anti-spam features. So I have operened up comments, and they do not require TypeKey registration. Let's see how this works out.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:48 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 2, 2005

Comments

The Left Coaster is also forced to move to the TypeKey registration for comments.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

October 1, 2005

Cartoons

Go see The Saturday Cartoons at Yellow Dog Blog.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 28, 2005

Senator Reid's New Blog

Senatoe Democratic Leader Harry Reid has a new blog, Give 'Em Hell Harry.

I participated in a conference call with Senator Reid yesterday and will write about it as soon as I can.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:29 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 26, 2005

Everything

Everything at Presstitutes is good today.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 16, 2005

The Caravan Of Hope

A convoy of volunteers put together by KPFK and The Vietnam Vets For Peace is leaving today for New Orleans and I'm going with them. Here are the details on The Caravan Of Hope.

The Caravan of Hope will leave on September 16 to deliver vital necessities of life to communities and organizations working on the ground in areas affected by Hurricane Katrina.

KPFK is collaborating with Veterans For Peace - Orange County Chapter, Remedy – Long Beach, Christ Unity Center – LA, South West Voter Registration, SOS "Save Our Selves" and others to organize this relief effort

Veterans For Peace in cooperation with the Anaheim Union School District and 40,000 students are collecting needed food and essentials for the displaced families and individuals. KPFK’s GM Eva Georgia will also take part in the caravan to New Orleans and help with the distribution of aid.

We will be driving straight through and arriving sometime late Saturday. I will be posting as time, events and internet connections permit. Stay tuned to Seeing the Forest for regular updates.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 8:04 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 14, 2005

Wow

Pacific Views: Another of Katrina's casualties.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 8, 2005

Photos, Coverage

At Operation Flashlight

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:36 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 6, 2005

WTF?

I'm spending some time deleting the trackback spam that has built up since my computer died...

Most of them are for poker these days. But I just wanted to ask, what the hell is "Live Nude Video Poker?"

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:51 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

How about a national blog tabloid?

(This post is a response to Dave's post below, "We're still only talking to each other".)

Blogs are basically an elite form of communication. It makes possible almost instant dissemination of information, but only reaches people who are motivated enough to make some effort. Blogs don't help much with the Democrats' biggest problem -- the passive voters who pick up the ambient opinion from radio and TV. Blogs also don't reach active citizens who, for whatever reason, are not internet-savvy.

I'm proposing a printable blog tabloid which would aggregate news and opinion daily and post it in printable form. That way, individuals could print off copies and distribute them to friends and acquaintances or leave them in public places.

In order to work, this tabloid would have to be attractively and professionally formatted, with punchy stories, quick summaries, nice graphics, and a bit of humor. Hopefully there is a widely-used software available which would make it possible for tens of thousands of people to print off nice-looking copies. This would effectively be a free national hard-copy tabloid printed off at thousands of locations.

The tabloid would also be readable online, of course, but the selling point would be its printability. The net is tremendously powerful as a tool for gathering and quickly disseminating information, but it does not reach everyone.

In order for this to work a lot of people would have to be involved -- at the editorial end, but above all at the tech and finance ends. Hopefully someone will pick up the ball and run with it.

Posted by John Emerson at 6:57 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

September 1, 2005

Liberal Blogosphere for Hurricane Relief

Liberal Blogosphere for Hurricane Relief:

Hurricane Katrina has devastated thousands of lives. Today, we're announcing a coordinated effort by the liberal/progressive blogosphere to help the victims of the devastation. Together, we're going to raise $1 million for the American Red Cross - and prove that the liberal blogosphere can help our fellow citizens in need. Make a donation for hurricane relief.

As President Clinton once said, "There's nothing wrong with America that can't be fixed by what's right with America."

The most prominent lefty blogs in the nation, represented by the Liberal Blog Advertising Network, are leading the way by running donated ads and asking readers to join us in making a difference. Combined, these blogs will display their ads over 12 million times each week over the course of the campaign.

Of course, we invite all progressive bloggers to participate in our community-wide campaign - both BlogAds subscribers and non-subscribers. Get the HTML to post the ads on your own blog or website.

This effort is a combined effort of four organizations:

* The Liberal Blog Advertising Network who are donating their ad space.
* MandateMedia.com - producing the creative and organizing the campaign.
* BlogAds.com - donating their advertising infrastructure to deploy the ads.
* DropCash.com - providing the mechanism for tracking our progress.

All of the proceeds will be sent to the Red Cross. Donations are being tracked by Drop Cash. Transactions are secured through Paypal. You can be certain that your contribution will be secure, for a good cause, and people will know it came from the liberal blogosphere.

Thank you. Together, we can do this.

Best,
Kari Chisholm, Mandate Media
Chris Bowers, MyDD.com, Liberal Blog Ad Network

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:50 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Dead Computer Again - Warning on Compaq!!!

I have a dead laptop -- again. The motherboard that was replaced on warranty in June is dead again. BUT HP DOES NOT WARRANT REPAIRS! They got me past the warranty expiration by replacing one defective motherboard with another defective motherboard.

HP is in the business of selling warranties, not computers that work! Avoid them. Do not buy Compaq or HP computers!

Update - With much effort and time on the phone I was able to convince HP to fix the computer, since it was their motherboard replacement that was defective.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:47 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 30, 2005

Taking a Few Days

I'm taking a few days on a short trip with my wife. So I havent been and won't be posting much. Back soon.

Meanwhile, Seeing the Forest has other bloggers.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:31 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 23, 2005

Freeper Poetry

Blog with a View: Take Me to Your Pharmacists

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:46 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 13, 2005

Zoom

Hugo Zoom: Friday Middle Eastern pop star blogging(part 1)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:58 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

August 10, 2005

The Party

Regular readers know that "The Party" is my term for the "conservative movement" that now controls the Republican Party, and its tentacles of propaganda and control: its network of PR think tanks, Fox News, Limbaugh and most of talk-radio; growing control of the judicial system through secretive societies like the Federalist Society; the infiltration of churches, etc.

I use it the way we used to talk about the old Soviet Communist Party and how it controlled the government and every aspect of life and thought in the old Soviet Union.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 29, 2005

Rip Off?

You decide.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:55 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 28, 2005

Comments

Well I experimented with requiring comment registration for a while and then opening up again. That bought me a couple of days of peace. But this morning there were well over 200 comment spams. (They mostly appear in older threads, for poker, porn and drugs.) I have to delete them by hand.

So, comment registration is back on for a while. Sorry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:19 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 27, 2005

Cease Fire Violation

I posted a lengthy smackdown of the Blueprint Magazine attack on liberals that Dave pointed to earlier today. I posted it at MyDD because I've been frustrated at my inability to both add comments to articles by other Seeing the Forest authors as well as my inability to respond to comments about my articles.

Stop by DLC Warmongers Writ Large and make a comment here or there. I also excerpted a large number of quotes from Bilmon's far superior smackdown, Cease Fire Violation

I share everyone's frustration at the spam problem Dave has been dealing with. I have no interest whatsoever in being a top down commentator and neither does anyone else here. I cherish robust feedback and vibrant discussion of the critical issues facing America. I know Dave is doing everything in his power to solve that the wingnut spam problem, so we can start generating comments and discussions here at Seeing the Forest.

We all appreciate the patience and diligence of our regular commenters and readers.

Thank-you for being a friend.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 1:06 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 25, 2005

Comments and Online Gambling Sites

OK, I'll turn of comment registration to see what happens with the comment spam.

I've been getting tons of Trackback spam, too. This is a Trackback ping that isn't really from a site linking to a post, but instead takes the reader to a commercial site. Mostly these are for online casino, online casino gambling, Texas Hold-em, and offshore gambling sites. (Sometimes for online prescriptions like order viagra or buy tramadol, and what the hell is carisoprodol?) Lately there have been a lot of blackjack ads, too. Also mortgage refinance. Nothing for Jessica Simpson yet. I guess this online betting thing is becomming very popular - you probably make a lot of money if you have an offshore gambling site. I play poker once in a while. (Or more.) Mostly I play Texas hold-em at PokerStars, an online poker site.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:30 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Essential News Sites

Answering a question -- in the News Sources listing on the left, down a ways, it is Drudge ReTort with a 'T'. So I changed it a bit to make it more clear. The listing now looks like this:

News Sources:


AlterNet
BuzzFlash
Blogometer
Common Dreams
Cursor
Daou Report
Drudge ReTort
Information Clearing House
Raw Story
Smirking Chimp
TruthOut
What REALLY Happened
Working for Change

These are essential sources of information. Tell people about them. Especially tell people who need to learn about alternative sources of news. Tell the quiet, shy secretary down the hall. Tell the loud right-winger in the Sales Department. Make copies of this list and stick it on bulletin boards and telephone poles or leave them in coffee shops, (adding the web address for each site because you can't click on paper.) We need more and more people coming to these alternative news sources, and blogs.

Did you know that you can click on "Email this entry" at the end of each Seeing the Forest post, and automatically e-mail the post to someone?

While I'm discussing sites, take a look at Patriot Daily.

And always, every day, go to the Daou Report.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 2:26 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Victory Lap?

The Agonist thinks we deserve a victory lap.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:59 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 23, 2005

He Quit

So long!

I'll miss him.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Slow Day - Go To New Blogs

It's a lazy Saturday here, might not be posting much. So I recommend that you go to the blogroll on the left and click through to several blogs that you have not visited before. (Scroll down to where it says "Links to Other Weblogs:")

The great thing about the blogosphere is all the different voices. Some of the blogs you might not know about are saying things that are important for more people to read. The way for more people to learn about these bologs is for all of us to be in the habit of visiting new blogs, and recommending them. I try to practice this by keeping a comprehensive blogroll. In fact, help me out by letting me know if you come across a bad link, or a link to a blog that is not being updated. And suggest new blogs for the blogroll. Thanks.

Update - Also, on the left there is a list of great news sources like BuzzFlash. On the right there are news boxes - with current headlines - for BuzzFlash, Media Matters, PlameGate (DCCC) and Smirking Chimp.

And, of course, there are some great, dedicated advertisers to check out.

You can also place an ad and get your message or product in front of thousands of like-mined people. You can place a BlogAd by clicking where it says "Advertise at Seeing the Forest," at the bottom of the adstrip, or "CrispAds Blog Ads," under that adstrip.

And, finally, on the right, down a ways under "Subscribe," you can subscribe and get each day's headlines delivered to your e-mail.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:41 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 21, 2005

Comment Spam Again

The comment spam is back and I have deleted over 200 spam comments just today. So for a while I am turning registration back on. I hope that TypeKey registration is working better. Sorry, no choice.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:38 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 20, 2005

STF On MSNBC Today

The Political Teen has video of Seeing the Forest mentioned on MSNBC today.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:03 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 15, 2005

Three Years

Today is Seeing the Forest's third birthday!

Click here to see Seeing the Forest's first post, but the second one was more interesting. The seventh one set the theme.

One of my favorites:

The Retirement Plan of the Unemployed Man
I took a trip down to the local liquor store to put a couple of dollars into the retirement plan. It’s up to $86 million this week. So I was thinking about what I’ll do with the money, and I started thinking about the taxes. Then I realized that rich people get rich by inheriting money, while working people (or unemployed people) get rich by winning the lottery. The Republicans say that people who get their money from inheritance shouldn’t have to pay any taxes. But I’m going to have to pay a huge amount of taxes when I win tomorrow night. It’s just one more way The Man beats you down.
Thanks skippy for reminding me.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:29 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 13, 2005

Clearing the cobwebs

The normally rational Bob Somerby has been temporarily absorbed by the Rove Collective and is relying on Debra Orin and Matthew Continetti from the Weekly Standard to join in bashing Joe Wilson. As far as I can tell, Bob accepts the Rovian spin that Joe Wilson was lying, even though he has been proven right. Rove and Cheney were telling the truth, even though they have been proven wrong. We wish Bob a swift recovery from his weakened condition.

Pay a visit to Digby if you want to cut to the chase. The bottom line is that who actually influenced the decision to send Joe Wilson to Niger, whether Cheney made a formal request to the CIA to investigate the yellow cake rumor, whether Cheney actually read Wilson's report and when Joe Wilson mentioned that certain Niger documents contained inaccuracies are all pecadillos that ignore the real story.

[Update: 07/14/05, 7:00 a.m. PST] Digby link repaired thanks to alert by Green Knight. For superlative and extensive coverage of this story Digby is on fire and The Left Coaster has Talking Points for Treason: Part II that are indispensible.

The obvious truth is that Joe Wilson was correct that Niger had not provided yellow cake to Saddam, and was not preparing to provide yellow cake to Saddam. At one point, the White House spin surrounding the yellow cake accusation was that their intelligence was not limited to Niger, but included all of Africa. That briefly made Wilson's accurate allegations more difficult to prove, but has also been proven wrong.

The only truth coming out of the White House is the same lame old rationale that Bush based his sixteen words on British intelligence. I fail to see how that gains any credibility for either Bush or Rove. The careful parsing of the sixteen words in Bush's speech proves conscious intent to deceive.

The White House was lying then, and they are lying now, because that's what they do.

Posted by Gary Boatwright at 5:49 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Heh

Well, they're catching up to this blog...

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 12, 2005

Blogometer

The Hotline's Blogometer.

The Blogometer is a daily report from The Hotline taking the temperature of the political blogosphere.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:24 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 11, 2005

Coming Soon

Friday will be the third anniversary of Seeing the Forest.

The 800,000th visitor will be tonite or tomorrow. Click to see if it's you. (Leave a comment if it is you.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:30 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Comments

Sorry. I'm working on it. I THINK I have the TypeKey registration system working now (no thanks to VERY LITTLE help from SixApart unhelpful support! I am not sure I can recommend Movable Type anymore.) So now you can register with TypeKey, and comments are set to show up automatically if you come from that system (and on other blogs that use that system). I THINK I still have to approve other commenters. Once you are approved you can post from then on.

I just spent a lot of time deleting over 250 comment spams that were waiting in theapproval queue since last night.

I still have to figure out if there is a way to block trackback spam.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:52 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 10, 2005

today

visit

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:53 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Comment Changes

Some of you may have noticed that this blog is under a comment and trackback spam attack lately. I'm deleting the spams as fast as I can.

I have turned on a requirement that people leaving comments must first register and be approved. Sorry. I have to do this to keep the spam out of the comments. I'll turn it back off in a few days.

I'm still trying to figure out how to fight the trackback spam.

Update - OK, OK, I relent. The comment registration isn't working and I'll turn it back on.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:58 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 8, 2005

Blaming

Doings over at Daily Kos: Daily Kos: The conspiracists

Today I did something I've never done before (not even during the Fraudster mess), and wish I'd never had to do.

I made a mass banning of people perpetuating a series of bizarre, off-the-wall, unsupported and frankly embarassing conspiracy theories.

I have a high tolerance level for material I deem appropriate for this site, but one thing I REFUSE to allow is bullshit conspiracy theories. You know the ones -- Bush and Blair conspired to bomb London in order to take the heat off their respective political problems. I can't imagine what fucking world these people live in, but it sure ain't the Reality Based Community.

So I banned these people, and those that have been recommending diaries like it. And I will continue to do so until the purge is complete, and make no mistake -- this is a purge.

This is a reality-based community. Those who wish to live outside it should find a new home. This isn't it.

I respectfully request that people here at Seeing the Forest refrain from talk about Jews being behind the bombings, if you please. Right wing fascists ... you can comment. Myself, I doubt it.

Update - I'm not saying I'll ban anyone, I was just saying please refrain from blaming Jews. I've been hearing that and getting e-mails and didn't want to see it here. I think that stuff is coming from Nazi types or even maybe Islamist fascist propaganda. I was going to post something asking people not to leave comments saying the Jews did it when I saw Kos's post and decided to use that to say it.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:50 AM | Comments (13) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 6, 2005

Dean Call

I joined a blogger web journalist conference call with Howard Dean today. I was on my cellphone, at the side of the road, coming home from getting a crown... Just got home, have to go to a business meeting. I'll write about it soon.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:14 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

July 3, 2005

A test

I'm curious what king of search hits are generated of I post the following words:

how to tap a cell phone, under 16 nude girls, porn, porno, bush lies, first time sex, girl teens, shocking pictures, rape sex, gay sex, rape porn, nude photo, young girls naked, personality quizes, quizzes or tests, sex scandal photos, optical illusions, SATs, LSATs, political teen, screwing teens

paris hilton, lego star wars, jessica simpson, thong, green day, women, camel toe, poker, janet jackson video, harry potter, jessica simpson, jennnifer lopez, pandemic, doom, Jeff Gordon Girlfriend, Taoism, InuYasha Episode

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 30, 2005

Not A Blog

You may have noticed a change in the blog description on the left. It now reads: "A weblog web magazine for Liberals who are FED UP with Bush and the Right!"

TalkLeft explains.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:59 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 28, 2005

Where I Be At

My Compaq laptop is being repaired. The little round hole where you plug in the CD power cord - called a "DC Power Jack" - is loose and I had to fiddle with the thing to get it to charge. And every day it was a little harder to get it to connect... Anyway it was still under warranty for one more month so I sent it in. (Readers who remember the Democractic National Convention last year know about my getting a new laptop...) I get it back Friday.

I have a Mac at home, which I am using now. But it is a different system, I don't have anything set up the way I like it, the bookmarks are all different, and I have to configure all the blogging software. And it is not portable. So I don't know if I will be posting as much as usual.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:43 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 23, 2005

What Peter Says

The Daou Report

I'm devoting much of today's report to Karl Rove's vile comments denigrating half of the American public. My office overlooks Ground Zero, and I'm looking at the gaping footprint as I write this. My wife and I were in New York that day, on our way to the WTC for a morning meeting. A chance phone call dragged on a few minutes too long and most likely saved our lives. I lost friends in the towers, and when I walk past the site, as I do almost every evening, the pain is as real as it was on September 11th, 2001.

I spent my youth in Beirut during the height of Lebanon's civil war, and I fought the Syrian presence in Lebanon long before the "Cedar Revolution." I watched young boys give their lives and mothers cradle their dying children in blood-soaked arms. I've seen more bloodshed, war, and violence, and shot more guns than most of the 101st Fighting Keyboardists combined. I wouldn't presume to question the strength or dignity of a stranger, and I pity those who blithely push the right=strong, left=weak rhetoric. It says far more about their inadequacies than it does about the target of their scorn. Today, Karl Rove took that rhetoric to a new, filthy low.

Go read the roundup.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:47 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 22, 2005

skippy

listen to an interview with master blogger skippy the bush kangaroo

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:33 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 19, 2005

Daou Report New Look

Nice! Go see.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:21 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 16, 2005

777,777

We just this minute had the 777,777th visitor to Seeing the Forest. Just thought that was worth a mention.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:58 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 13, 2005

Downing Street Blogswarm Update

Go see MyDD :: Downing Street Blogswarm Update by someone named Gary Boatwright.

The "Downing Street Memo" is a document leaked from the British government, summarizing a Prime and Cabinet Minister-level briefing covering a July 23, 2002 meeting with the top people in the Bush Administration about Iraq. The memo says that the decision had been made to invade, that secret military action had already started in hope of provoking Iraq to do something that could justify an invasion, and the intelligence was being "fixed around the policy." This memo is as close as you can get to proof that the Bush Administration lied to the public and the Congress. We all knew that, of course, but this is proof - the kind of evidence that will stand up in a trial, if you get my drift.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 7, 2005

Liberal Blog Audience Bigger Than Cable News

Chris Bowers at MyDD: Liberal Blogosphere Surpasses Cable News:

By comparison [to cable news audience numbers], last week the Liberal Blog Advertising Network received 5.915 million page views, and that was the worst week in a while, because of Memorial Day. Typically, the Network generates over eight million page views per week. Further, roughly 70% of those page views came from the 25-54 demographic. In other words, these fifty-seven liberal blogs combined have already equaled, if not surpassed, the three cable news networks combined as a source of news among Americans under 55. Without any doubt, the blogosphere in general now far surpasses the three cable news networks as a source for news among Americans under 55.
If you know anyone trying to sell a product, send them to the Liberal Blog Advertising Network. It costs a LOT less than advertising on TV! And it reaches more people.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:45 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Great Blog Graphic

I've been taking my own advice and looking at lots of blogs I haven't visited for a while. Best blog graphic: A Little Pollyanna.

Photos.

I'm not sure I want a Daily Aneurysm

A Draft.

Hairy Fish Nuts.

Hollow People.

Sisters.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:27 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Do Your Duty

I've got a cold, probably form being on an airplane. And I have to catch up on all the pesky "day job" stuff. So I haven't been blogging much. I will be writing about last week's Take Back America conference and other things soon.

In the meantime, pick two or three random blogs from the blogroll on the left -- blogs you have never visited before -- and go have a look. It's always a good idea to visit a new blog once in a while. There are a lot of very smart people out there blogging away and saying some very important things.

I have described blogging as a near-perfect marketplace of ideas, and here's how it works: Most blogs have at least one reader. Some have two or three, and one of those might also have a blog. When someone writes something that another blogger decides is important or interesting, that blogger links to it. And another blogger might see it and also think it is interesting or important. If it really is something interesting or important, pretty soon you have ten or twenty bloggers linking to it, and it gains attention.

But this process only works if you are looking at lots of blogs, and not just a few crowded ones. So it is your civic duty to read lots of blogs, even blogs you have never visited before. Go do your duty.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 4, 2005

Big Brass Alliance

Big Brass Alliance:

The Big Brass Alliance was formed in May 2005 as a collective of progressive bloggers who support After Downing Street, a coalition of veterans' groups, peace groups, and political activist groups formed to urge that the U.S. Congress launch a formal investigation into whether President Bush has committed impeachable offenses in connection with the Iraq war. The campaign focuses on evidence that recently emerged in a British memo containing minutes of a secret July 2002 meeting with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his top national security officials.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:07 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

June 1, 2005

New Version of Media Transparency

There is a new (really new -- pre-launch) version of Media Transparency: The money behind conservative media. This is a pre-launch version. Please take a look, and let them know how you like it. Also, leave a comment here.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:16 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 30, 2005

Take Back America Conference This Week

I am leaving in the morning to attend the Take Back America 2005 conference in Washington, DC. I will be traveling all day Tuesday. The conference is Wednesday - Friday. I hope I will be able to post some observations about the conference while I am there.


If you are attending this conference, drop me a line!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 6:24 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 22, 2005

It Must Be Raining

wherever Crooks and Liars is based. They seem to have lots of stuff up today. It sure ain't raining here in the SF Bay Area, so I'm OUTside -- not much coming out of here.

This is San Francisco from Mount Tamalpias yesterday (click for larger):

Update - Different large pic.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:23 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 20, 2005

The Daou Report

I just want to tell my readers that I think THE DAOU REPORT does a great job of seeking out and condensing what is happening on any given day in the left and right blogosphere. It's a great site to check daily.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:43 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

When Good Commenters Get Blogs

Great picture, Elaine.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:24 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 19, 2005

Sexy Economics Blogging

Just a blog observation. The other day, in the post US Finances Emulate Argentina's, Hale Stewart wrote,

God how I wish it economics was sexy. Then, politicians from both parties would have the courage to actually deal with the budget problems.
Today, in The Shape of the Bush Boom, Stirling Newberry takes up the challenge, writing,
He does not have very much room right now, the graphic is the "yield curve" of treasury bonds. Looking a the yield curve is like being a pimp: it is all about getting more spread. The "spread" in bond terms is the difference between the interest rate paid, or the "yield", on two different kinds of bonds. Thus if a commentator says that there is a high "spread" between treasuries and corporate bonds, it means that corporate bonds are paying more than treasuries, and that this difference is higher than it is usually. The "spread" on the yield curve is the difference between the short durations "Treasury Bills", which run 13 weeks, and the "long bond" at the top of the yield curve.
My wife says I need to get out (of the computer) more. That I noticed that suggests she is right. That I blogged about it...? Maybe wwwaaaayyyyy too late.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 9:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 17, 2005

Support Liberal Media

I second this.

Also visit and support BuzzFlash, AlterNet, Common Dreams, Cursor, Raw Story, Drudge Retort (read the name carefully before you complain), Information Clearing House, Smirking Chimp, TruthOut, and What REALLY Happened.

And you can lisen to Air America Radio online.

Who'd I miss?

Update - Working for Change.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:46 AM | Comments (11) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 16, 2005

Beef and Possum

Welcome to the Beef and Possum.



Please state your preference:
Beef
Possum
What the FUCK are you talking about?

  

Free polls from Pollhost.com

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:24 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 14, 2005

The Wonderful Thing About Blogs

This post strikes me as a great example of what is so wonderful about blogs. The ongoing conversation. Especialy the comments and the blog posts that are linked in the post and comments (in paticular Billmon's but read the great "Death Bet" post as well).

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

The Camel's Nose

I wanted to write about this, but Elayne says it:

I wanted to put in my two cents, having grown up Jewish in a very Christian neighborhood.

I don't know what religions Matt and Kevin and Ezra practice or grew up with, but I'll bet they're majority ones. Mine wasn't.

[. . .] When I was a kid I faced a hell of a lot of anti-Semitism, from having stones and eggs thrown at our house when we dared to put up Chanukah decorations, to being chased home by mobs or surrounded by kids on bikes and pinned to a tree until the tree-bugs started crawling all over me and... Sorry, the memories are still pretty painful, even 40 years later.

Go read more.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 4:38 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Brad Show

I just learned about The BRAD SHOW On the Air! Via RAW RADIO!

They have a very interesting lineup for tonite, so click through to listen online. Scroll down their page to "CLICK HERE TO LISTEN LIVE!"

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Missed

Here are some great blogs I somehow missed from my bloggroll. Until now.

SistersTalk

Brad Blog

Dem Bloggers

David Corn

Swing State Project

Hoffmania

BlueOregon

feministing.com

All Spin Zone

Pam's House Band

Needlenose

Let me know of others that I have missed.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 3:46 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 12, 2005

Union Label Weblogs

Union Label Weblogs

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:18 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

UN Oil-For-Food Blogfight

Check out this post at UN Dispatch and this follow-up (and the links to right-wingnut bloggers responding to the original.

John Cole talks about the resulting blogfight.

Stirling Newberry writes about the issue with lots of background at The Oil For Food Witch Hunt.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:08 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 9, 2005

New News/Columns/Blog

Arianna has launched The Huffington Post, including a new blog. (But the Blogroll is missing ... someone.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:13 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Cartoon

skippy the bush kangaroo found us a cartoon!

Posted by Dave Johnson at 5:06 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Jerry Brown's Blog

Jerry Brown's blog is quite interesting. Take a look.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:15 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 7, 2005

MSM

Sean Paul doesn't like the term "MSM".

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:19 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

May 4, 2005

All Day

So all day it has been in my head. Especially relevant is:

Old lady judges watch people in pairs
Limited in sex, they dare
To push fake morals, insult and stare
While money doesn't talk, it swears
Obscenity, who really cares
Propaganda, all is phony.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 7:11 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Talk About It

I was JUST sitting down to write a post about how I have realized I just don't watch cable TV news anymore, when I saw this at DailyKos: Extending the debate. The post talks about Steve Gilliard's post News is news. Steve writes,

If CNN basically covers this story all Saturday, it's news. It's not a debate. It is news, and malaria isn't. Instead of wishing it wasn't news, we need to subvert it. We need to discuss it in wider terms, class, race, sex. We need to bring depth to the debate. I mean this story gets weirder by the day. But if you don't engage it, bring different perspectives to it, the media gets away clean again. When people say "you don't cover this story" people think "liberal whiner". If they want to talk about runaway brides, let's talk about runaway brides, but intelligently, questioning the sex roles of men and women and the economic cost and pressure in a large wedding. There is fertile ground for smart people, but they have to seize the target and change the debate.

One of the great tricks of conservative pundits was to talk about ANY topic. No matter what it was, they had an opinion, got face time and then book deals. They saw this as fertile ground to extend the debate. We have to engage these issues and bring new perspectives on them.

Good for Steve! The Right's strategy has been to talk about everything in terms of their underlying ideology. Everything comes back to market solutions, etc. And that is what we need to do, too. We need to explain everything in terms of democracy and community.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:59 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 30, 2005

24

24 at BlogStreet : Most Important 100 Blogs

It's the quality of the readership, not necessarily the writership.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:26 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 26, 2005

Light Blogging Day?

I'm working today, so probably won't get much chance to blog. I don't know who else will be posting. So in the meantime I recommend prowling the list of EXCELLENT weblogs over on the left and down a ways. There are so many good bloggers, working hard, bringing you the best of Progressive news, opinion and analysis. Check them out.

As always, let me know if I have missed listing your blog, or have old or broken links.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:10 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 20, 2005

Seeing the Forest

New visitors from Left Coaster -- this post from 2002, one of my very first blog posts, explains. (And while you're there scroll down to my second post, about Nader - you'll like it.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 8:59 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 5, 2005

Blog Taken Hostage!

The Stakeholder :: Hostage Crisis at RedState.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 1:31 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Blog Issues

If you are using Firefox, you see a grey backgorund for a while. The problem is that this is what fixed some of the even worse Internet Explorer problems - and you don't see the grey background in IE. I'm still trying to get the whole thing working (whle packing for the move and trying to get work done, too)... Sorry.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 11:35 AM | Comments (6) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 2, 2005

If You Can See This

If you are using Internet Explorer - and if you can even see this - Do you know why posts and text might be disappearing? And I do mean disappearing - big spaces where there should be text... Sometimes you can see the top half of a line of text but not the bottom half.

It is just fine in Firefox. Aside from asking everyone to switch to Firefox (you should) I guess I should fix this problem. Any suggestions? Also, for text sizes...

The problems of switching to a new blogging system...

Update - I'm closing in on the problem thanks to an e-mail from a reader. It's a known IE bug, and shows up commonly with Movable Type blogs. Check here for an example. (The font color fix and the .content style color fixes are good, thanks, but didn't fix this.)

Posted by Dave Johnson at 10:52 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

April 1, 2005

Welcome

BandS.JPG

Buddy and Espresso welcome you to the new home of Seeing the Forest. They are slightly abashed by the move.

BandS.JPG

But now they are somewhat more relaxed. ("Get that camera out of our faces and we'll be more relaxed.")

Everything older than this post can be found at the old blog, or by clicking the Archive links in the right-hand column here, down a ways.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:02 AM | Comments (14) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos

Housekeeping

Please let me know if there are any problems. If you have trouble subscribing to any of the feeds on the right - which allow you to receive Seeing the Forest via e-mail, or if you stopped getting your e-mails, let me know. If you have trouble leaving comments, let me know. Etc., let me know. Thanks.

Posted by Dave Johnson at 12:01 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack | Link Cosmos