UPDATES BELOW THE FOLD! YOU’RE GONNA LOVE THIS STORY!
Here is the offending video that all of this is about…
Now first I want to say that if you want to see why the above video is coming up blank you have to read the update below. The account holder, the offender in this story, has suddenly and inexplicably deleted his account. Fortunately a quick thinker out there has posted it him or herself… to bad bitches! The saved video is below the quote.
From Michelle Malkin
“If ‘eswinner’ isn’t Ethan Winner of the Publicis Groupe, then why did “eswinner” yank the video so quickly? Or if this was just an innocent homemade ad, then what does he have to hide? You’d think he’d want more attention for it.”
For the best coverage of this story and constant updates please go to the JawaReport…
All of the credit for this goes to the Jawa Report who have done a PHENOMINAL job busting this story wide open. I don’t expect to get up in the morning and see this running on any of the “Networks” so I’m going to put it up here and let the bloggers get it out there. Basically the story goes like this…
All of those wild and wacky stories about Sarah Palin that keep being used for talking points, my blog has been innundated by them here and here. Several examples are the book banning (lie), and Sarah Palin was a member of an Anti-American separatist organization (Lie). Basically it comes down to this:
Obama Connected PR Firm Produces, Uploads Lying Anti-Palin Ad on YouTube, Then Pushes it Virally as “Grassroots” Effort; PR Exec Sockpuppets Praise Video for “Getting the Truth Out;” Company Employee Uploads it On Democratic Underground and Urges Readers to Send it Out to Ten People Each
What the hell does that mean? Well it means the the Obama campaign is SERIOUSLY breaking FCC regulations by:
If, as seems to be the case, David Axelrod hired Winner and Associates to do this, then there had better be a disclosure somewhere in Obama’s FEC filings that he’s hired this company through Axelrod. If he’s deliberately hiding firms he knows to be working for him, that has got to be a violation of the law.
Or as Jawa Report puts it and the the reason they’ve worked OVERTIME to get this out here:
It would appear that the ad, while professionally produced, was put on YouTube and then spread in such a way as to make it seem like amateurs had made it and spread it. We can’t help but wonder if the missing disclaimer on the video was an intentional exploitation of a loophole meant to distance the people behind the ad from its outright lies?
We also can’t help but wonder if maybe those who produced the ad believed that the lack of disclaimer constituted an FEC violation? Which would be an alternative explanation for why they did not wish to be connected to it.
Beyond the disclaimer, though, our reading of FEC regulations suggests that political campaign and 527 groups, such as Moveon.org, are required to report money spent on advertising opposing a candidate for public office. We can find no exception for advertising intended for web only campaigns.
We assume that if some group paid for the production of the video, that it would be reported to the FEC. Not doing so, we believe, would constitute a breach of federal campaign law.
Are we going to see the media jumping on this one? We’ll see but I doubt it. Astroturfing… the Democrat Swiftboat… Here are the basics of this story in concise Liberal-like bullet points to make it EASY for the media to write a story:
While not conclusive, evidence suggests a link to the Barack Obama campaign. Namely:
* Evidence suggests that a YouTube video with false claims about Palin was uploaded and promoted by members of a professional PR firm.
* The family that runs the PR firm has extensive ties to the Democratic Party, the netroots, and are staunch Obama supporters.
* Evidence suggests that the firm engaged in a concerted effort to distribute the video in such a way that it would appear to have gone viral on its own. Yet this effort took place on company time.
* Evidence suggests that these distribution efforts included actions by at least one employee of the firm who is unconnected with the family running the company.
* The voice-over artist used in this supposedly amateur video is a professional.
* This same voice-over artist has worked extensively with David Axelrod’s firm, which has a history of engaging in phony grassroots efforts, otherwise known as “astroturfing.”
* David Axelrod is Barack Obama’s chief media strategist.
* The same voice-over artist has worked directly for the Barack Obama campaign.
This suggests that false rumors and outright lies about Sarah Palin and John McCain being spread on the internet are being orchestrated by political partisans and are not an organic grassroots phenomenon led by the left wing fringe.
UPDATE 9/22/08 @ 6:49 a.m.
Offenders YouTube account has been taken down. Within an hour of the story being posted, the videos began coming down. Within 90 minutes they were all down. Damage Control Team Alpha has been awakened at 3:00 a.m. I guess they CAN answer the phone.
That’s a pretty fast response time. I didn’t mention Winner & Associates in my hints. So why would they be on notice?
I only mentioned Axelrod and Obama.
No, I do not believe that a random Winner & Associates employee just happened to be reading the Ace of Spades website and suddenly came across a link to a story about them and then decided to wake the bosses over it.
I believe the Obama campaign and the DNC have been watching since this afternoon. And they put the call into “eswinner” to get those videos down and bury the evidence.
And now “eswinner” has decided to end his short career on YouTube, despite the fact that this was his Best. Day. Eveehhhhh.
UPDATE 9/22/08 @ 9:08 p.m.
Statement of Ethan WinnerThe following is in response to questions I have received regarding the post on the Jawa Report website.
I produced and posted on the Internet the video entitled “Sarah Palin: A Heartbeat Away.”
The idea for the video was mine. No one paid me to produce it. The only out-of-pocket cost will be the fee for the voice-over narrator, which I will pay personally when I receive an invoice. Contrary to the allegation in the Jawa Report, the voice-over artist has never done any work for the Obama campaign. I retained her through a talent agency based solely on the quality of her voice.
Neither the Obama campaign nor any independent political action committee has had a connection with the making and/or posting of this video. Just like the thousands of Americans who have posted videos on the Internet regarding the current Presidential campaign, I produced this video as an expression of my right to free speech, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
I believe the American people have a right and a need to know information about candidates for political office and their views. I made this video because I think it is important for the public to be aware of the association between Sarah and Todd Palin and the Alaskan Independence Party. The New York Times has reported that the Alaskan Independence Party website describes the party as seeking, in the words of the party, “a range of solutions to the conflicts between federal and local authority,” including “advocacy for state’s rights, through a return to territorial status, all the way to complete independence and nationhood status for Alaska.”
While a number of media outlets have said that reports that Sarah Palin was a member of the Alaskan Independence Party may have been erroneous, her attendance at the party’s 1994 convention, her video speech to the 2008 convention and her husband’s membership in the Alaskan Independence Party have not been called into question.
Some people have asked why I have pulled the video from the Internet. The reason is simple. Following the posting of personal information about me by the Jawa Report, my family began to receive threatening and abusive phone calls and emails.
PS, I mean Ethan Winner. Whoops. I always do that.