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Captain Midnight and the Secret Squadron
by Daniel Sargis
05 February 2004

Unions, environmental groups, and wealthy liberals have made large contributions to 527s to create what has become known as a shadow Democratic Party, according to the Center for Public Integrity.


“Drink More Ovaltine” should be the Washington Post’s masthead slogan.  By my calculations, the Post will need to consume 3336 bottles of Ovaltine to supply all 834 news and editorial employees with a Captain Midnight Decoder Ring.  Or, maybe, they should just give one to all of their readers.

In a piece of “reporting” worthy of Baghdad Bob, the Post’s Thomas B. Edsall “reports” that “a network of nominally independent organizations (is) committed to defeating President Bush.”  I wonder to which of the six definitions of nominally Edsall is referring -- did he mean Ultra Liberal, Far Left-Wing or Fundamental America Haters?  Or was he talking about Biased Media?

Edsall mentions the “millions of dollars flowing from unions, wealthy individuals, environmental groups and others on the left into such organizations as America Coming Together (ACT), America Votes and the Partnership for America's Families, which are known as ‘527’ groups for the section of the tax code governing their activities.”  This is the liberals’ attempt to circumvent the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law ban on “soft money” by creating a “shadow” Democratic Party.  Yes, these are the comrades of the Secret Squadron.

In cryptographic fashion, Edsall continues...“Contrary to their traditionally anti-regulatory views, top Republicans now back tough regulation of 527s.”  Once you run this through the Decoder Ring, it reads, “As usual, the Republicans are trying to get somebody to enforce the laws that the Democrats are forever violating.”  Does anybody know how to spell RICO? 

Sometimes life just isn’t fair.  Captain Midnight du jour, John Kerry, keeps insisting that the Republicans are the Party of Special Interests.  But Edsall points out that the “Republicans...are far better at raising smaller, and still legal, "hard money" donations.”  Republicans consistently receive almost 100% more in smaller individual donations than do the Democrats.  So what is Captain Midnight talking about?

Oh, he means “...the influence peddlers...the polluters...the big oil companies...the HMOs...the big drug...and the special interests....”  But...Charles Lewis of the nonpartisan Center for Public Integrity, a watchdog group, gives us the decoded version, "The note of reality is he (Kerry) has been brought to you by special interests... It's very hard (for Kerry) to utter this rhetoric without some hollowness to it.” 

I guess that Captain Midnight Kerry only tells the truth to the Secret Squadron.  This election cycle, Kerry has taken $531,251 from the health care industry, $26,700 from the oil and gas industry and $2.6 million from the finance, insurance and real estate industries.  Kerry has “received nearly $640,000 from lobbyists, many representing telecommunications and financial companies with business before his committee.”   For that matter, Kerry “has raised more money from paid lobbyists than any other senator over the past 15 years, federal records show.”

And speaking of Special Interests, “...unions, environmental groups, wealthy liberals and other major players on the left have made large contributions to 527s to create what has become known as a shadow Democratic Party.”  The pious liberals have thus far pocketed “$5 million from financier George Soros; $3 million from Progressive Corp. Chairman Peter B. Lewis; $745,000 from RealNetworks Inc. chief executive Rob Glaser; and $50,000 from groups including the League of Conservation Voters, the AFL-CIO, the Sierra Club, the Association of Trial Lawyers, NARAL Pro-Choice America and Emily's List.”

This message is more cryptographic than Teddy Kennedy’s support of MADD and the ERA.  We simple folk just can’t figure out what the Liberals are talking about without the Secret Decoder Ring and, without the ULTRA team at Bletchley Park, this Colossus might remain an Enigma.  It seems that what Democrats say, mean and do are inconsistent variables.  Or, in the decoded version, just a crock of crap.

And speaking about crap...Howard Dean thinks that, “You ought to hire somebody who has balanced a budget. I'm much more conservative with money than George Bush is.”  This from the mouth of mister shag carpeting himself who: raised $41 million dollars of somebody else’s money; blew almost all of it in two primaries; and lost both primaries resoundingly.  I guess he’s only frugal with his own dollars.  At least Dean can be a candidate for Dennis Kozlowski’s replacement at Tyco.

In a final Enigma intercept, Kerry charges that, "Republicans are scared stiff...That's why they are sending their attack dogs out.”  Of course, Kerry spoke these words when he knew the story on his own deceitful Special Interest payola was only minutes from breaking.  And, once decoded, what Kerry meant was that the Dean campaign was about to chew him a new behind over his hypocrisy.  Jay Carson, a Dean spokesman, cleared this up..."John Kerry has been withdrawing money from the special interest bank for his entire career and now -- because it's the popular thing to do -- he wants us to believe that he's going to close the account and go after the people that have funded his political career.”

What ever happened to the kinder, gentler days of honest dialogue from the likes of James Carville?  You know what I mean...before the Republicans invented code talking and attack dogs.

Daniel Sargis, a freelance writer, is a principal in a private investment development company.  His website is dansargis.org
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