What follows is a guest blog by the former Communications Director of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.

Ed Garvey and Charlie Sykes make a perfect match, since they both are hideous liars.

That Sykes is a liar need not be debated in this space at any length. Just ask the nun who caught him making up quotes. Or any of his ex-wives.

But Garvey has gotten a pass for too long, and I find it especially galling that he’s now the source of the talking points for Garvey and the Journal Communications/Bradley Foundation “Axis of Suck” as they try to damage my former employer, the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, as well as my former boss.

I won’t dignify their talking points, since they are based neither in truth – nor in of any desire to reach any truth.

But I do think it’s well past time for Garvey to be called on his bullshit.

Several times over the course of my job Garvey behaved with total dishonesty, both to me and with the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, with whom he seems to be nursing some kind of special hatred (last I checked, he’s not a member).

At first, I tried to deal directly with Ed Garvey when he would raise one point or other. In this day and age of cellphones and voice mail, he never seemed to be able to get back to me when I tried to correct one of his profligate errors, or to respond to one of his baiting questions.

Then, I would read his blog the next day to find his claim that I could not be reached. Now, ask any reporter in Wisconsin whom I’ve dealt with, but being hard-to-reach has never been a failing.

Garvey went on a harangue about my views about the rights of women to make their own medical decisions that dishonestly portrayed ME as anti-choice, and deliberately misrepresented my views as expressed on social media.

But beyond how Garvey has lied to and about ME or about the Democratic Party and its leaders, the bigger crime is how he’s lied to and taken advantage of the progressive movement in Wisconsin.

Two things need to be said here, though there are plenty more.

The first is that Ed Garvey is one of the single individuals in this nation most responsible for the election of George W. Bush, not necessarily a watershed moment for any progressive cause in America. Garvey went up onstage when Ralph Nader announced his candidacy to endorse the insipid notion that there is no difference between the Democratic and Republican Parties. The tiniest fraction of the votes that Nader got in Florida would have ensured Al Gore the presidency.

Garvey does the typical gymnastics in forgiving himself for that great blow to working men and women, and for progressive causes. If he thinks there is no difference between a Bush or Gore presidency, he should, for instance, proclaim so at any of our national cemeteries, next to the graves of the Iraq war dead.

Secondly, it is of special irony that Ed Garvey has now reinvented himself as an enemy of the corrupting influence of money in politics, and an enemy of the special interests. In each of his campaigns (I’d call them “losing campaigns,” but he doesn’t have any other kind), Garvey sucked deeply of the teat of the very corporations and monied interests against whom now he has magically developed the courage to inveigh.

I’m all for rabble-rousing. But rabble-rousing does not necessarily require that you attack your friends. Sometimes that’s necessary, in my view, but Ed Garvey has made this its own, warped virtue. He’s gone round the bend so much so that, in his recent spree of attacks, he’s marching in lockstep with the lying Sykes, and the same crew that is hard at work as lapdogs for the Koch Brothers and Scott Walker. Enough.

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31 Responses to Enough

  1. John says:

    Still lying and laying the blame on Nader for being an honest candidate? That has been debunked to all but the lowest information types for close to a decade now. (A Google search of “Nader Gore” will bring up hundreds of sites doing so for you).

    This alone makes this entire blog obviously written by someone who is AT LEAST as much of a liar as those he is railing against.

    GORE cost Gore the election. He could have taken up the NAACP’s voter disenfranchisement suit in his case, or refused to concede as the USSC was NOT within its jurisdiction to take the case (as anyone familiar with the US Constitution knows.)

    (For that matter, what is it that GWB did that was so bad that Obama has not expanded on?)

    This is the problem with Amoral Partisan Opportunists, like those involved with either face of the Fascist party. They rely on lies to make people support things like War Crimes, or School Privitization (see: Lena Taylor).

  2. Brad Geyer says:

    I’m so sick of Democrats whining about Nader. Far more Democrats voted for Bush than Nader even received votes, this includes the votes in Florida.

    Also, Nader received no electoral votes. That is the vote that elects in the end.

    Nader had the right to run. We had the right to vote for him if we desired. You do not own our votes. Some Democrats need to learn what the word democracy means.

    • Also, Nader received no electoral votes. That is the vote that elects in the end.

      Sure, but how is the electoral vote decided? The popular vote. If Al Gore had gotten Ralph Nader’s roughly 97,000 votes in Florida, we wouldn’t be talking about GWB’s two terms in office, because Florida’s electoral votes would have gone to Gore, and with them, the election.

      You’re also absolutely right that Nader had the right to run, but are we better for him having run and lost?

      • Brad says:

        The election was decided by the courts, and Gore did little to fight it.

        I would say the best thing the Democrats can do is run candidates that are on the side of the people, the workers, the poor … instead of these Republican-lite corporate Dems.

  3. Christine McDonough says:

    Well I for one think Ed Garvey and Ralph Nader are great Americans. It might be news to the former communications director of the Democratic party but, Al Gore did with the election. Just ask the newspapers who actually did a recount.

    Perhaps Al Gore got the same backing in fighting that battle over the election as Dennis Kucinich got when MSNBC uninvited him from the Democratic Presidential Primary Debates in Las Vegas. Even though Dennis Kucinich qualified for the Democratic Presidential Primary debate coming out of New Hampshire, MSNBC invited him and then uninvited him. The Democratic Primary debates went on without him. He fought in court and won then MSNBC pushed it to a higher court and they won this happened in less than a 24 hour period.

    The rest of the presidential candidates stabbed their fellow democrat in the back and went on without him. Do you know why? Because they were scared he might win. The people who are really in charge of this country can’t allow a candidate to seriously contend for the office of President unless they can be sure the candidate will be their puppet.

    Imagine if this man had become our President.

  4. Chris McDonough says:

    Well I for one think Ed Garvey and Ralph Nader are great Americans. It might be news to the former communications director of the Democratic party but, Al Gore did with the election. Just ask the newspapers who actually did a recount.

    Perhaps Al Gore got the same backing in fighting that battle over the election as Dennis Kucinich got when MSNBC uninvited him from the Democratic Presidential Primary Debates in Las Vegas. Even though Dennis Kucinich qualified for the Democratic Presidential Primary debate coming out of New Hampshire, MSNBC invited him and then uninvited him. The Democratic Primary debates went on without him. He fought in court and won then MSNBC pushed it to a higher court and they won this happened in less than a 24 hour period.

    The rest of the presidential candidates stabbed their fellow democrat in the back and went on without him. Do you know why? Because they were scared he might win. The people who are really in charge of this country can’t allow a candidate to seriously contend for the office of President unless they can be sure the candidate will be their puppet.

    Imagine if this man had become our President.
    Link

  5. Donna Metzger says:

    My quick take Graeme Zielinski screed against Ed Garvey is Garvey comes out wiser. Graeme is young, angry and hurt. I agree with Garvey, we “need a second party”. As quoted on his FightingBob website – “Is this a private fight or can anybody join?”

  6. Jackie Cody says:

    A coward to the end of his stained tenure in the WI Democratic Party. Why did Blogging Blue allow G. Zielinski to get away with this?

  7. Yeah, Ed Garvey, what Graeme said! Quit helping the Koch brothers by asking how much money Mike Tate makes! Whattsa matter with you? And shame on you for giving the 2000 election to George W Bush, ( and to think all this time I thought it was the Supreme Court that handed it over. Jeeeeeeez, I gotta read the papers more ).

  8. John says:

    I notice that Graeme Zielinski does not address any of Ed Garvey’s criticisms about Mike Tate and his unknown salary. Is Garvey right that it is $150,000 and country club memberships?

    • Chad Black says:

      Zielinski points out that the talking points aren’t true and therefore are not worthy of being dignified.

      And no, the state party isn’t giving the chair $150K and multiple country club memberships.

      It’s a ridiculous accusation and Garvey should be ashamed of himself

      • Stan says:

        If Mike Tate is not payed $150k as Garvey is claiming, then how much is he being paid?

        • I’ll second that question. How much is Tate being paid? And let’s see some documentation so we know it’s accurate. C’mon, Mike, settle this business. Post your compensation info here on Blogging Blue. Do it before the election. Be a man about it.

    • Chad Black says:

      Did you notice this line by Zielinski: “I won’t dignify their talking points, since they are based neither in truth – nor in of any desire to reach any truth.”

      And Graeme has his faults, but he’s right. Garvey is not dealing in reality, rather he is unfortunately dealing in loose and misguided gossip.

      From my understanding Mr Tate does not make $150k salary nor does he get country club memberships from the party. The mere fact that Garvey would publish such unfounded rumors makes me question his motives.

      • Steve Carlson says:

        Zielinski claims Garvey is one of the people most responsible in this country for helping to elect George Bush, and Garvey should be ashamed of himself? Sweet weeping mother of God, man, get a grip.

        I’d like to know what Mike Tate makes. Why doesn’t he tell us and put Garvey to shame?

  9. Gareth says:

    Kerry lost Florida because his campaign made a legal blunder in not asking for a complete recount of the entire state rather than a few counties. This made it possible for the Bush team to argue in front of the Supreme Court that the recount would be a violation of “Equal Protection” clause of the Constitution, in that the votes not being recounted would be treated differently than those that were. It’s a bullshit argument but it was enough to give the court a hook to hang it’s bogus decision on.

  10. CarolC says:

    What’s sad about the Progressive view of Nader, Garvey and their ilk is their utter failure to recognize cowardice. They rant and rave about the Democratic Party and instead of working hard and quietly to build the Progressive caucus and power base within the Party, they juvenilely declare it must be destroyed and drain away enough energy and funds to keep us from building. They know they can’t win and know fully well they’ll never be tested with rule. Hard work, fortitude, the ability to play a long strategy, patience, teamwork, humility and self-control are the qualities of a mature and brave mind. Garvey may be an old man, but he is hopelessly immature.

    • Brad Geyer says:

      Nader has accomplished far more for the people of this country than any corporate Democrat whether Gore, Clinton or Obama.

      Which side are you on? … the side of the people or the side of a party?

      • Yeah, President Obama signing a repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was no big deal.

        Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act? Certainly doesn’t compare to the accomplishments of Ralph Nader.

        New START Treaty? Eh, who the hell wants fewer nuclear weapons anyhow?

        You’re right…Ralph Nader has accomplished far more for the people of this country than President Obama could ever hope to do.

  11. Carol says:

    Progressive adulation of Garvey, Nader, and their ilk, completely fails to recognize the cowardice of these individuals. Their solution to disagreement is to withdraw like a spoiled child. Want change in the Party? Then join, participate, canvass and fundraise. Build a Progressive caucus with the size and strength to influence. Instead they rant and rave and draw off just enough funds, energy, and media attention to cause us to lose it all. Playing a long game, hard work, patience, cooperation, and mental fortitude are qualities of a mature thinker. Garvey is an old man who never grew up.

    • Carol,

      The nasty smear campaign launched against Ed Garvey, just because he asked how much Mike Tate makes and whether the deadline for running for party chair was broadly noticed, is disgusting. Calling people like Ralph Nader and Ed Garvey cowards is disgusting. How does the DPW think it’s going to win the hearts and minds and votes of progressive, independent voters with this kind rhetoric? Unbelievable. You people should be ashamed of yourselves.

  12. Karen McKim says:

    Nader did not prevent Gore’s victory. Gore won the popular vote nationwide AND in Florida. That is no longer debated. Gore lost the election to sloppy elections administration and poorly designed, poorly operated, and likely manipulated vote-marking machines and vote-counting computers. (Those hanging chads? The vendor supplied the wrong paper stock, screwing up the right to vote more efficiently than any Voter ID law ever could.)

    And yet progressives and Democrats are STILL arguing over whether the loss was the fault of Ralph Nader or Al Gore, heads firmly in the sand about the opportunities our elections security offers to anyone willing to take advantage of them.

    CHALLENGE: Test your Wisconsin election-integrity awareness:

    1) Which public official/office in Wisconsin performs the audits of the software that counts Wisconsin votes (including last-minute patches and updates installed by the manufacturer)?
    A – The GAB
    B – The county clerks
    C – The state Department of Administration (IT division)
    D – GAB has the authority, but none of these officials have the capability, and none ever examine the software. The vendors are on an honor system.

    2) If a hacker with access to Dominion’s updates of voting machines’ PROM packs wants to shift votes in an April election for either Supreme Court or DPI superintendent in 60 key precincts to create a margin of more than 0.5% and avoid a recount, what will that hacker calculate to be the odds of being discovered in a post-election audit?
    A – 100%; the results in every precinct are audited after every election
    B – 50%; half the precincts are randomly selected for audit
    C – The would-be hacker has no way of knowing, because the GAB does not announce how thorough the post-election audits will be until Election Day.
    D – The would-be hacker knows the hack will never be discovered, because only November general-election contests are ever audited in Wisconsin (and not even all of them).

    3) How many election results have been discovered to have been affected by machine malfunction in Wisconsin before the election results were certified as final?
    A – Only one, that Medford incident in November 2004.
    B – None, because all the audits have verified the machine results.
    C – None, because GAB forbids any audits or review of the machine-tabulated results (other than recounts, if the losing candidate meets the conditions for a recount) before the machine-calculated results are certified as final.

    Answers: You guessed it. D, D, and C. The two (2) vendors of Wisconsin’s voting machines (and anyone who has hacked in after them) are on the functional equivalent of an honor system to count Wisconsin’s votes accurately. Either company controls enough machines to swing an election if they choose to, and they will face no serious consequences even if they are discovered (they won’t be), because they will be allowed to say “Sorry; glitch!” with no independent investigation, and there is so little competition that they cannot be ‘fired.’ (Postscript: The disenfranchisement-by-misprogrammed-machine of 600 Medford voters in November 2004 was not discovered until March 2005, and then not in an audit but by an alert individual who was gathering data for a political party’s voter database.)

    Now, is anyone here willing to make the case that no one has tried or will try fraudulently to manipulate Wisconsin’s vote-counting, and that all our machines will count accurately in every election from now on?

  13. Brad Geyer says:

    It’s great that Obama has done these gestures for women and homosexuals. Now can we look at where average wages are … and have been for decades?

    Can we look at corporate profits and tax paid?

    Can we look at how we are all being poisoned by the likes of Monsanto and other corporations for their profits.

    It’s great we can all be equal in hour slavery, while we are getting sick and dying.

    • “Gestures?”

      By definition, a gesture is something done as a formality.

      Passing a fair pay act and repealing DADT weren’t just “gestures;” they were meaningful policy changes that benefitted many Americans. What’s more, you failed to note the START Treaty, but maybe you’re just not a fan of nuclear non-proliferation.

      Look, I acknowledge that President Obama is far from being a progressive, and he’s done a hell of a lot that I don’t agree with (see my posts on drone strikes), but your argument that Ralph Nader has accomplished far more for the people of this country than Obama is absolutely laughable.

  14. Fred says:

    Just got notice of a mike Tate dem party 72 county update phone session next Thursday! Nice to be an incumbent huh!

  15. Fred says:

    C’mon Zach
    I get he’s the guy, but having this call right before his own election?
    He announced this 72 county strategy last year, now all of a sudden we need a statewide conference call to all members?
    You’re usually better than this.
    Call a spade a spade!

  16. Fred, no doubt folks like you would be attacking Mike Tate if he weren’t doing his job, so it certainly appears to me like he’s in a no-win situation.

  17. Zach,

    The fact that Mike Tate let Graeme Zielinski run amok with his great big uncontrollable mouth for almost two solid years before something was done about it is evidence enough that Tate wasn’t doing his job.

    Those commenters on this blog and elsewhere describing Ed Garvey and his supporters as childish and immature can’t have read the press releases or public statements coming out of those two over the last 24 months. It’s been just plain embarrassing, and I know that I’m not alone with that view.

    And this parting shot from Zielinski about Garvey makes me wonder if Zielinski needs help. If I were Mike Tate I’d plead with Zielinski to not help me anymore. Please, I’d say. Pretty please.

    My wife and I joined our county Dem party several years ago and got a taste of what it’s like to be progressives in the Dem party. There were really only three requirements to be accepted by the regulars. You had to hate republicans, and I mean hate them, you had to adore Dave Obey, and I mean adore him, and you got extra credit for hating Ralph Nader. We don’t attend anymore because my parents and my sister are blue collar republicans, we didn’t want to join the Obey cult of personality, and we actually like Ralph Nader and Ed Garvey.

    So if the DPW is confident they can win elections smearing people like Nader and Garvey, okay. And if they want to lionize a man who now works for Dick Gephardt’s lobbying firm, (Obey), that’s okay too.

    But don’t call my house for my money or my time.

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