The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

29 July 2006

Al Franken, Midwest Values PAC, Larry David, Jimmy Smits, Barbra Streisand

AL'S HOLLYWOOD JACKPOT

Elite Insiders Line Up To Give Franken Big $$$






Are conservatives misunderestimating this year's effort by Hollywood insiders to overthrow Capitol Hill's GOP leadership?

With a mistaken assumption that the end result of 2004's giant waste of liberal money will repeat itself this year, the right seems dismissive about their chances for success.

Given today's Washington Post report detailing big celeb dollars flowing into Al Franken's Midwest Values PAC, however, it might be time to rethink the threat level. So far, his list of contributors reads like a who's- who of the entertainment industry establishment.

It's clear they aren't at all discouraged by what happened during the last election cycle.


As we've previously reported, Franken is downright clever when it comes to money. He's got Air America Radio covering everything, including his recent move from Manhattan to Minnesota, studio expenses there and even the tab incurred when dining with executive producer Billy "$625,000 per annum" Kimball.

And to cover his bloated $2 million - plus salary and other perks, George Soros and Rob Glaser of RealNetworks are always happy to open their pocketbooks.

In today's report, we discover that a whole host of Hollywood stars have been tripping over each other in order to to fund Al's liberal PAC.

Sounds like a great deal for Franken, doesn't it?

From the AP's Frederic J Frommer:


WASHINGTON -- The list of contributors to comedian Al Franken's political action committee reads like a celebrity who's who: singer Barbra Streisand, writer-director Nora Ephron, actor-writer Larry David and actor Jimmy Smits.

Franken, who hosts a radio show on the liberal Air America Radio network, is considering challenging Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., in 2008. Franken moved his show from New York City to Minneapolis earlier this year, fueling speculation of a possible bid.

His leadership PAC, Midwest Values PAC, raised $500,000, according to a review of campaign finance reports. Franken couldn't use the money for his own race, but he can contribute to other candidates, engendering goodwill.

He has used the cash to contribute to national Democratic Party organizations, Minnesota Senate candidate Amy Klobuchar and House candidates Coleen Rowley, Tim Walz and Patty Wetterling,

Among the contri- butors to the PAC were actor Larry Hagman, directors Christopher Guest and Barry Levinson, and writers Harold Ramis and Aaron Sorkin.

Franken says he still hasn't decided whether to run for the Senate. Coleman's office declined to comment, but his campaign is already making an issue of Franken's Hollywood money.

"One of my potential opponents is comedian Al Franken," Coleman wrote in a fundraising letter a few months ago, "but there's nothing funny about his venomous 'Air America' liberal radio show, his high-powered and deep-pocketed Hollywood friends, his national network of Bush-haters or the magnitude of his personal wealth."


We've been tracking Franken's recent moves and the only conclusion that can be drawn is that he is certain to run in 2008. You could bet the farm on it.

And given the way he's been spreading around the dough, lots of politicians are going to owe him favors once his own effort kicks off.

For Hollywood's lefties, it's a two-fer: while planting seeds to get one of their own in the US Senate next time around, they're also helping to elect upper- midwest liberal Democrats in 2006.

While we're glad to see Senator Coleman keeping an eye on Franken's antics, we hope the Republican Party is also paying attention to what could very well turn out to be a serious future threat.

Thanks for your continued and vital Radio Equalizer support, via Amazon orders that begin with clicks here, regardless of what you ultimately order!

Franken Aid, Wanted, Franken PAC: David A Lunde for the Radio Equalizer, Franken Golf: Pete at IHillary

22 Comments:

  • I donated $100 to the Midwest Values PAC and got to see a fine show at the State Theater to boot! Good to see Franken & Davis back together again.

    Although I have never done any political fund-raising, I may get motivated to do something more for Franken should he decide to run for the Senate.

    By Blogger WHT, at 29 July, 2006 18:30  

  • By Blogger frankenlies, at 29 July, 2006 23:13  

  • Dave,
    Your understanding of what Franken said about Hume's statement only proves that you don't know what you are talking about.

    From frankenlies
    ===========================================================
    What did Hume say that so rattled Franken? On his radio show and the show's blog [link], Franken asserted,
    "[Hume claimed] that FDR [Franklin Delano Roosevelt] wanted to replace Social Security with private accounts. Hume is lying." (please note my emphasis)
    ===========================================================
    You say that Hume never said the word replace and while that is true, he did say, "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."
    Since the word supplant is a synonym for the word replace, you can hardly call Al Franken a liar for that, now can you?

    tee-hee

    By Blogger pbrauer, at 30 July, 2006 01:21  

  • By Blogger pbrauer, at 30 July, 2006 02:38  

  • Wow Brian, with the photoshops.

    Are you applying to work at The Onion?

    / Don't quit your day job.

    By Blogger Ben, at 30 July, 2006 12:33  

  • frankenlies,

    Thanks for the link to Franken's lies. His prevarications will be especially helpful if he runs for the senate.

    Likewise, we should be able to get some mileage out of the photoshop pictures here in Minnesota.
    .

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 30 July, 2006 13:14  

  • I don't know if Franken is the right candidate for the Democrats, but I think Norm Coleman in 2008 will be the Rick Santorum of 2006. The moderate voters will have had their fill of that phony and will be anxious for change.

    By Blogger Elmonica, at 30 July, 2006 15:35  

  • pbrauer: Good grief. You illustrate perfectly how people should stay away from subjects that they know nothing about.

    The words "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans" are those of FDR, not Brit Hume! In addition, FDR's idea of "self-supporting annuity plans" were to be a voluntary element included within the Social Security program.

    The bottom line: Franken was flat-out wrong. (See also: Brit Hume Was Right.) Maybe reading this will help you.

    BTW: Media Matters, whom you cited, also was mistaken initially in their reporting, as they had to issue a correction to the their story.

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 30 July, 2006 15:52  

  • Dave said:
    pbrauer: Good grief. You illustrate perfectly how people should stay away from subjects that they know nothing about.

    The words "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans" are those of FDR, not Brit Hume! In addition, FDR's idea of "self-supporting annuity plans" were to be a voluntary element included within the Social Security program.

    What you say is true, however Hume’s reading of FDR’s words implied the involuntary system "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans." That is totally false.

    What he was advocating was a plan similar to the 401K plans we have today.

    Franken was correct, and you are wrong.

    By Blogger pbrauer, at 30 July, 2006 20:09  

  • 1. "What you say is true ..."

    You got that right, pbrauer.

    2. "Hume’s reading of FDR’s words implied the involuntary system 'ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans.' That is totally false."

    Wrong.

    Here are Hume's actual words:

    "Senate Democrats gathered at the Franklin Roosevelt Memorial today to invoke the image of FDR in calling on President Bush to remove private accounts from his Social Security proposal. But it turns out that FDR himself planned to INCLUDE private investment accounts in the Social Security program when he proposed it."

    Franken said, "Hume’s claim is that FDR wanted to replace Social Security with private accounts." Franken was wrong, wrong, wrong.

    Got it?

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 30 July, 2006 21:14  

  • No, Hell no.

    Dave,
    Hume took FDR’s words out of context (which is a normal occurrence in the right-wing media) and made it sound as if Bush and FDR were in lockstep and at odds with the Senate Democrats. Hume also made it sound as if FDR meant that the compulsory system "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    You provided the first paragraph of Hume’s statement, but not the second for an obvious reason. Here is his quote from your web site:

    Senate Democrats gathered at the Franklin Roosevelt Memorial today to invoke the image of FDR in calling on President Bush to remove private accounts from his Social Security proposal. But it turns out that FDR himself planned to include private investment accounts in the Social Security program when he proposed it.

    In a written statement to Congress in 1935, Roosevelt said that any Social Security plans should include, "Voluntary contributory annuities, by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age," adding that government funding, "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    Now here we have from the Social Security web site:

    In his January 17th message to Congress, President Roosevelt summarized his view of these three proposals this way:

    "In the important field of security for our old people, it seems necessary to adopt three principles:

    First, non-contributory old-age pensions for those who are now too old to build up their own insurance. It is, of course, clear that for perhaps thirty years to come funds will have to be provided by the States and the Federal Government to meet these pensions.

    Second, compulsory contributory annuities which in time will establish a self-supporting system for those now young and for future generations.

    Third, voluntary contributory annuities by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age. It is proposed that the Federal Government assume one-half of the cost of the old-age pension plan, which ought ultimately to be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    Note that the Third principal was meant, if passed, to supplant the First principal which was meant to cover those people that were too old to have contributed sufficiently in the compulsory plan.

    Franken was correct.

    By Blogger pbrauer, at 31 July, 2006 01:51  

  • Having looked over the trascript of Franklin and Humes comments I have to say I don't think anything Hume said constituted a lie and that Franken should have been more precise in quoting Hume.

    However, I think Hume deserved criticsm since he cited FDR in order to support the President's plan without elaborating further on how FDR's view of private accounts was different from the Presidents.

    By Blogger Elmonica, at 31 July, 2006 04:39  

  • Good grief. I'll go through this so even an infant can understand it.

    1. HUME: "Senate Democrats gathered at the Franklin Roosevelt Memorial today to invoke the image of FDR in calling on President Bush to remove private accounts from his Social Security proposal. But it turns out that FDR himself planned to INCLUDE private investment accounts in the Social Security program when he proposed it."

    FRANKEN: "Hume’s claim is that FDR wanted to replace Social Security with private accounts. Hume is lying."

    See? The one who is lying is Al Franken.

    ----------

    2. PBRAUER: "Hume also made it sound as if FDR meant that the compulsory system 'ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans'." (emphasis mine)

    Wrong! Here is what Brit Hume actually said:

    HUME: "Senate Democrats gathered at the Franklin Roosevelt Memorial today to invoke the image of FDR in calling on President Bush to remove private accounts from his Social Security proposal. But it turns out that FDR himself planned to INCLUDE private investment accounts in the Social Security program when he proposed it.
    "In a written statement to Congress in 1935, Roosevelt said that any Social Security plans should INCLUDE, 'Voluntary contributory annuities, by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age,' adding that government funding, 'ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans'."

    Did you see the words "INCLUDE"? Did you see the words, "voluntary contributory annuities", not "compulsory system," as you wrote? You're flat-out wrong on all of this.

    GOT IT? Franken made a mistake. It happens. Nobody's perfect. My advice: Get over it.

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 31 July, 2006 10:17  

  • Dave said:
    GOT IT? Franken made a mistake. It happens. Nobody's perfect. My advice: Get over it.


    Oh, I see, now it’s only a mistake and not a lie. I am making headway, your site is called Frankenlies, isn’t it? I’ll restate my position, Hume took FDR statements out of context and made it sound to the casual viewer that Bush was in lockstep with FDR and he clearly was not. Most people would take Hume’s statements and not question them and research what FDR actually said. It doesn’t look like you did this either. One of the motto’s of FOX News is “we report, you decide.” They report just enough so there is a good chance of the viewer to with the conclusion they want them to. Again, here is what FDR actually said:

    First, non-contributory old-age pensions for those who are now too old to build up their own insurance. It is, of course, clear that for perhaps thirty years to come funds will have to be provided by the States and the Federal Government to meet these pensions.

    Second, compulsory contributory annuities which in time will establish a self-supporting system for those now young and for future generations.

    Third, voluntary contributory annuities by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age. It is proposed that the Federal Government assume one-half of the cost of the old-age pension plan, which ought ultimately to be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    Hume was lying by omission and Franken is quite correct in calling him a liar. Fox News would make Goebbels proud.

    By Blogger pbrauer, at 31 July, 2006 11:17  

  • pbrauer said
    "Oh, I see, now it’s only a mistake and not a lie. I am making headway..."

    No, you are still wrong. You are falling into the same trap other Frankenfiles subscribe to.

    Anything that does not meet Franken's litmus test, whether it is a mistake, a different opinion, a logical response, or the truth is AUTOMATICALLY CLASSIFIED AS A LIE according to the teachings of misanthrope Franken.
    .

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 31 July, 2006 11:43  

  • pbrauer: "Oh, I see, now it’s only a mistake and not a lie."

    I'm just going by Al Franken's own accounting of a "lie." Although he says in his book, "Lying is when you deliberately deceive," the examples in his Lies book (notice the title!) often illustrate otherwise.

    For example, Franken points out that Ann Coulter wrote that Evan Thomas is the son of socialist Norman Thomas. Oops. He's his grandson. By Franken's account, that a "lie" by Coulter.

    I'm just playing by the same rules that Franken himself established.

    Hume was correct. Franken wasn't.

    Frankenlies.com :: Al Franken Debunked :: Lies of Al Franken chronicled is 100 percent correct!

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 31 July, 2006 15:16  

  • Dave said:

    Hume was correct.

    Hume took FDR’s words out of context and change the meaning of his words in doing so.

    Hume said:
    In a written statement to Congress in 1935, Roosevelt said that any Social Security plans should include, "Voluntary contributory annuities, by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age," adding that government funding, "ought to ultimately be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    But here is what FDR actually said:

    Third, voluntary contributory annuities by which individual initiative can increase the annual amounts received in old age. It is proposed that the Federal Government assume one-half of the cost of the old-age pension plan, which, ought ultimately to be supplanted by self-supporting annuity plans."

    Notice that Hume completely left out part of FDR’s quote “It is proposed that the Federal Government assume one-half of the cost of the old-age pension plan, which,” and replaced it with his own “adding that government funding.” And the reason he did this was because he wanted to deceive his audience.

    Hume deceived his audience and in my book that makes him a liar.

    By Blogger pbrauer, at 31 July, 2006 16:52  

  • pbrauer said:
    "And the reason he did this was because he wanted to deceive his audience."

    Objection, your honor! Are we to assume learned counsel is now a mind-reader?

    By Blogger The Benson Report, at 31 July, 2006 18:22  

  • This is too funny ... Every time I debunk pbrauer, he has a brand-new response. Can we remember the original issue, please?

    AL FRANKEN: "[Brit] Hume’s claim is that FDR wanted to replace Social Security with private accounts."

    As I've clearly illustrated above and at Frankenlies.com, Franken was flat-out wrong, wrong, wrong.

    Buh-bye.

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 01 August, 2006 19:35  

  • Every time I debunk pbrauer, he has a brand-new response. Can we remember the original issue, please?
    -snip-
    As I've clearly illustrated above and at Frankenlies.com, Franken was flat-out wrong, wrong, wrong.


    Errr... no.

    pbauer clearly demonstrated that Hume selectively quoted FDR out of context in order to perpetuate a lie. Franken rightly called Hume out.

    By Blogger HeadHunter, at 02 August, 2006 07:32  

  • If you think the Democratic Party is going to fold up its tent and go home just because they failed to get anywhere in 2004, you are SADLY mistaken.

    The Republican Pary didn't disband itself in 1974 after Richard Nixon resigned the Presidency in shame, did they? Of course, it should have, if any Republican had any morality or shame. But, of course, they don't.

    No, they retrenched, rethought their strategy, and came back stronger, leading to the scandalous Reagan administration and the idiotic witch hunt against Bill Clinton.

    The Democractic Party will do the same, or at least try to.

    By Blogger Scott, at 02 August, 2006 15:00  

  • And by the way, Franken was right, Brit Hume was distorting FDR's intentions through omission, and was assuming nobody would even check up on him and call him out on it. Hume used FDR's words to mislead the public into thinking that the positions of FDR and Bush were the same.

    And common sense alone would tell even you Frankenlies, that such a thing, prima facie, is NOT RIGHT.

    FDR was a liberal, and Bush, well, he's not a liberal.

    Why are you expending all this energy trying to prove that Brit Hume was right when he said that Bush was a liberal? (Or had the same position as a liberal?)

    Tee hee.

    By Blogger Scott, at 02 August, 2006 15:11  

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