Posts Tagged ‘ACORN’
October 26th, 2011 at 10:03 pm
ACORN Joins the Group of Liberal Special Interests Backing Occupy Wall Street
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I’ve posted before on how the ‘Occupy’ protests — supposedly an outlet for the disenfranchised and underprivileged — have cast their lot with powerful left-wing special interests like the teachers unions. Now, according to Big Government, ACORN is getting in on the action:

Fox News reported earlier today that remnants of ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), the radical community organizing group that collapsed after its corruption was exposed by Big Government, are playing a “behind the scenes” role in organizing the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations.

The Fox News investigation followed Matthew Vadum’s report two weeks ago at Big Government that ACORN was paying people to attend the Occupy Wall Street protests in New York through the Working Families Party, an ACORN front group.

Now, Big Government has learned that in an email sent by Fithian to Occupy organizers and supporters on October 22, 2011, she reported that the “New Bottom Line”–an effort to move as much money out of major banks as possible on November 5th–is being led by several ACORN-linked organizations: “National People’s Action, National Pico Network, and Alliance for Just and Sustainable Economy and other key state groups like ACCE in CA, NYCC in NY, or MORE in St. Louis.”

I don’t begrudge these groups their ability to participate in these protests. That’s a natural consequence of the robust rights of free association present in a liberal society. What I do object to, however, is the ‘Occupy’ movement’s continued rhetorical claims to be a voice for the voiceless when it’s doing the bidding of some of the most powerful and well-heeled liberal special interests in the nation. This isn’t a left-wing revolution promoting “people power.” It’s just the same old tax-and-spend crowd, only this time on the sidewalks.

October 26th, 2010 at 12:29 pm
“Deregulation” to Blame? 90% of Outstanding Mortgages Controlled by Federal Government
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Dwight M. Jaffee, professor of finance and real estate at the University of California, Berkeley, points out in The Wall Street Journal that “Today 90% of the $14 trillion in outstanding residential mortgages is controlled by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Department of Veterans Affairs, or Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – with the latter two under government conservatorship.”

Ninety percent?  Wait a minute…  Doesn’t every dizzy big-government leftist from Barack Obama to Paul Krugman tell us that “deregulation” of the housing sector caused our economic difficulties?  The fact is that the housing finance market is one of the most regulated, not least regulated, sectors of the entire economy.  Thanks to Professor Jaffee, we are reminded of the sheer scale of that regulation, as well as the left’s efforts that fed the housing bubble.

June 1st, 2010 at 4:13 pm
The Return of James O’Keefe
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You may not know his name (though you’ve seen it here at CFIF before), but you probably know his work. O’Keefe is the 25-year old renegade conservative filmaker whose undercover exposes of groups like Planned Parenthood and ACORN have revealed institutional corruption on the left.

Well, he’s back. And this time his target is the U.S. Census Bureau. Are the results as damning this time? Judge for yourself:

March 1st, 2010 at 6:09 pm
Obama Names Union Boss to Deficit Reduction Panel

If there are any camels’ backs at the breaking point, here’s a public employee union-sponsored straw.   As if daring the mainstream media to challenge his meritless assertions of bipartisanship, President Obama named SEIU leader and fellow Saul Alinsky disciple, Andy Stern, to his “Bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform.”

That’s right; the panel of experts tasked with finding ways to reduce the federal deficit will count among its ranks a man who agitates for expanding both the membership and compensation of government employees.  He also has tight connections with ACORN and organized intimidation campaigns against Tea Party activists.  Asking Stern to find ways to save taxpayer money is like putting a fox in charge of the bed check in a hen house: it makes sense if you don’t think about it.

February 23rd, 2010 at 10:51 am
ACORN By Any Other Name
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Ben Smith of reported yesterday that “the embattled liberal group ACORN is in the process of dissolving its national structure, with state and local chapters splitting off from the underfunded, controversial national group, an official close to the group confirmed….

“‘Consistent with what the internal recommendations have been, each of the states are developing plans for reconstitution independence and self-sufficiency,’ said the official, citing ACORN’s ‘diminished resources, damage to the brand, unprecedented attacks.’”

To this unsurprising development, we can only add that, to corrupt an old adage, manure by any other name smells the same.  Weren’t those local offices that James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles exposed in their undercover videos?

February 18th, 2010 at 3:44 pm
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Darrell Issa (R-CA), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, today issued an explosive new report on ACORN and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), charging, among other things, a “criminal conspiracy.”

The entire report may be read here.

December 9th, 2009 at 3:26 pm
ACORN Internal Probe Sees No Evil
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“Nothing to see here, folks…  Move along.”

That was the convenient and laughable conclusion of a self-serving ACORN-supported investigation.

You remember ACORN…  It recently became famous for being caught red-handed on hidden video on multiple occasions and at multiple sites sharing advice on how to use government largess to engage in child prostitution.  Well, ACORN’s executives hired former Massachusetts Attorney General Scott Harshbarger to investigate.  The conclusion?  “We did not find a pattern of intentional, illegal conduct by ACORN staff involved.  In fact, no action, illegal or otherwise, was ever taken by any ACORN employee on behalf of the videographers.”

Other than dispensing advice for all the world to see with their own eyes, that is.

Tellingly, ACORN and Mr. Harshbarger refused to admit how much his law firm was paid for his “investigation.”  ACORN’s CEO Bertha Lewis conveniently demurred, saying that its board would have to determine at some later date whether to disclose that amount.

Perhaps that’s a subject for the next undercover investigation…

November 27th, 2009 at 1:12 pm
Another Obscure Community Organizer Bursts Onto The World Stage

In what may be a lesson for budding progressive politicians, the career paths of President Barack Obama and the new European Union foreign minister offer insight into how to position oneself for stardom while ascending in darkness.  It turns out that like Obama, Lady Catherine Ashton has a dodgy past full of close ties to political radicals on the Left.  As a paid organizer for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), then Ms. Ashton rubbed shoulders with a group that Russian Communist leaders found helpful during the Cold War.

Yet the fact remains that the Kremlin found CND and other “peace movements” useful ways of undermining the unity of NATO, weakening the West’s defence posture and stoking anti-Americanism. The ex-dissident Vladimir Bukovsky, an expert in Soviet penetration of the West, says: “the worldwide disarmament campaign in the early 1980s was covertly orchestrated from Moscow. To a substantial extent it was also funded by the Soviet bloc”.

Like Obama’s well-documented connection to ACORN, though, the row over Lady Ashton’s past affiliation with folks proclaiming “better red than dead” probably won’t be enough to force her resignation as the embodiment of European foreign policy.  Who knows; maybe she’ll be able to broker a deal with a resurgent Russia to help combat the rise of an Islamic Republic inside the continent.

November 17th, 2009 at 5:13 pm
Video: The End of ACORN
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Mike Flynn, editor of Big Government, explains how a few people with a camera brought down ACORN.


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November 12th, 2009 at 2:13 pm
Could It Be? Are There More ACORN Videos?

Bertha Lewis, head of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN), has been busy in recent months trying to defend her organization in the face of an avalanche of controversy.  Lewis is sticking to her argument that it was merely a few bad apples employed by ACORN who were caught on undercover videotape giving advice on how to lie to the IRS on income from a fictional underage brothel.  Such behavior isn’t typical within the organization, she claims.

Or is it?  Ronald Kessler, Chief Washington Correspondent at, writes today:

More undercover videos of ACORN workers apparently advising Hannah Giles and James O’Keefe on how to evade federal taxes on income from a fictitious brothel will be released to the media in coming weeks, Giles tells Newsmax. 

In the meantime, the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now has filed suit in Maryland against Giles and O’Keefe, claiming civil damages…

Attorneys for the Liberty Legal Institute are defending Giles, the daughter of a conservative pastor in Miami, pro bono. 

In related news, Politico is reporting that ACORN “filed a lawsuit against the federal government Thursday morning, seeking to overturn a law stopping the flow of federal funds” to the organization.  ACORN argues that measures passed by the House and the Senate to stop the organization from receiving certain taxpayer dollars are… unconstitutional.

October 21st, 2009 at 1:25 pm
Video: ACORN Philadelphia Investigation Part I
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October 19th, 2009 at 12:10 pm
Nine Reporters on One Murder and None to Spare on ACORN?
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To be even relatively safe from vicious attack, virtually all current writing on public affairs must begin with caveats (such as “I am not a racist” or “I really do want peace on earth but…”)

Okay, then, here’s our caveat for this one.  We absolutely love crime reporting.  With particularly intriguing cases, we’ve been known to live for it.  Crime reporting is part of the grand tradition of American journalism and even grander stories.  The number of truly great reporters who started on the graveyard police shift is staggering.

But…(you knew there was one coming), we were considerably taken aback when New York Times Public Editor Clark Hoyt revealed yesterday that the paper had nine reporters covering the murder of Yale graduate student Annie Le.  Nine reporters from one paper on one tragic but non-extraordinary murder?

Remember when part of the Times’ excuse for not originally covering the ACORN scandal was that the paper was overextended covering wars and famines and the natural disaster that is Congress?  Maybe a few of the crime guys and gals could be reassigned.  Just saying.

October 5th, 2009 at 1:33 pm
More ACORN Shenanigans

It’s Monday.  And, why not start the week off with another, check that, several new charges and allegations of fraud and corruption against everyone’s favorite community organizing group, ACORN.

For starters, Breitbart has this video of a Fox News interview with Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller (a Democrat), whose office uncovered a paper trail implicating ACORN, the organization, of voter fraud.   This is significant as most of the ACORN voter fraud investigations and prosecutions to date have focused solely on the group’s employees.  

Specifically, Ross’ office found evidence that ACORN illegally used prisoners to canvass for voters during the 2008 presidential election, among other things.  Read more on the story here.

Then yesterday, The Washington Examiner ran an editorial in which it highlights more ACORN shenanigans from Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. 

In Louisiana, an investigation by the Pelican Institute revealed that a local ACORN Housing Corp. office received contracts worth $625,000, paid for by HUD Community Development Block Grants, to repair and develop low-income housing in New Orleans.   There’s only one problem:  According to the Examiner, the Pelican Institute “found that no work was actually performed to fulfill the contracts” and “the office address listed on the contracts for ACORN turned out to be a vacant lot.”

In Oklahoma City, documents from a vacant ACORN office included a memo detailing the organizations “five-year plan” to elect progressive legislators.  Those documents, many of which are now in the possession of, also revealed information about an ACORN project in Houston for “hiring Outreach Workers to remind people to get out and vote for Barack Obama in the upcoming election.”   As the Examiner noted:

As a tax-exempt nonprofit, ACORN is barred from participating in partisan election activities, and its national spokesmen have insisted throughout the 2008 presidential race that their organization was not working to elect Obama.”

With the mountain of evidence suggesting widespread fraud and other illegal activities growing by the day, to steal from the title of the Examiner editorial, “Now will Congress investigate ACORN?”

September 28th, 2009 at 1:33 pm
BofA Moves to End Partnership with ACORN reports:

Already facing the loss of federal government funding, the community-organizing group ACORN also has run afoul of one of its big corporate partners, Bank of America Corp. 

“In response to questions from The Wall Street Journal, a spokesman for the banking company said it has ’suspended current commitments’ to ACORN Housing, an affiliated group, and ‘will not enter into any further agreements with ACORN or any of its affiliates,’ pending assessments by the bank of the organization’s operations. …”

Read the full story here.

September 27th, 2009 at 8:28 pm
ACORN and The New York Times
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Clark Hoyt, Public Editor (ombudsman, sort of) of The New York Times, today analyzes the Times’ “slow reflexes” on the ACORN story. 

No bias or ideology there, a bunch of editors told him, they’re just too busy covering “health care, two wars and the deep recession,” in the words of Dean Baquet, Washington bureau chief. 

Managing Editor Jill Abramson, managing editor for news, blamed “insufficient tuned-in-ness to the issues that are dominating Fox News and talk radio,” undoubtedly forgetting that when “the New York City Council froze all its funding for Acorn and the Brooklyn district attorney opened a criminal investigation, there was still [no story].”

But just wait, conservatives.  Abramson and Executive Editor Bill Keller have now appointed an editor to “monitor opinion media and brief them frequently on bubbling controversies.”  The editor will be anonymous, so he doesn’t get, in Keller’s words, “a bombardment of e-mails and excoriation in the blogosphere.”

We have one point:  Most conservatives just want newspapers that cover news (like when the local district attorney opens a criminal investigation of a major national organization) with factual, unbiased reportage, not more he said/she said babble on “bubbling controversies.”  The bubbling controversies already have outlets (such as Fox News and talk radio), which seem to be doing a lot better than the Times.

We have one question:  Is an anonymous editor anything like an anonymous source?  It’s just a journalistic concept with which we are unfamiliar.

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September 24th, 2009 at 5:09 pm
ACORN Investigations Piling Up Like Cordwood
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The U.S. Department of Transportation today announced an investigation of ACORN because the  teenage prostitutes about which ACORN advised would have been transported in vehicles, possibly clunkers.  No, that’s a joke.  But the Inspector General of the Treasury Department really did authorize an investigation, and more are being sought at both federal and state levels.

Who knew that ACORN could provide such a stimulus package for lawyers?

September 23rd, 2009 at 10:09 am
Investigating ACORN (Yeah, Right!)
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Americans concerned about alleged extensive corruption within ACORN can rest easier tonight.

ACORN has launched its very own, no-holds-barred investigation of itself.

Overseeing the investigation will be former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros as an ACORN advisory council member.  Cisneros was forced to resign as HUD Secretary in 1997 as a result of an 18-count indictment for conspiracy, giving false statements and obstruction of justice, regarding payments to a former mistress.  In 1999, he was allowed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor count of lying to the FBI, getting off with a $10,000 fine and no jail time.  President Clinton pardoned him in 2001, cleaning up that fine mess.

Conducting the investigation will be Scott Harshbarger, former Attorney General of Massachusetts.  Harshbarger certainly knows evidence – and how to trump it up.  In the 1980s, as a district attorney in Massachusetts, he prosecuted a case almost universally regarded as one of the most shameless miscarriages of justice in the country.  Using the coached, nay, manipulated and transparently irrational testimony of children, and exploiting public emotions over sexual predators, Harshbarger prosecuted and convicted Gerald Amirault of the Fells Acres Day Care Center in Malden, Massachusetts.  Harshbarger has to this day never acknowledged the overzealous prosecution, nor has he had to.

With sturdy citizens like Cisneros and Harshbarger at the helm of ACORN’s internal investigation, there is just no need for those state and federal investigations, like with subpoenas and sworn testimony and all that stuff.  Is there?

Oh and by the way, as columnist Deroy Murdoch points out, when “ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis told Fox News Sunday her group ‘absolutely pays its taxes,'” she must have forgotten the state and federal tax liens filed against ACORN’s New Orleans headquarters.  When you’re busy collecting millions from state and federal governments, it’s just ever so easy not to remember a measly $1 million in back taxes.  Surely Cisneros and Harshbarger will want to clear that little misunderstanding up as soon as possible.  Won’t they?

September 22nd, 2009 at 6:46 pm
Votes to Defund ACORN… Unconstitutional? Really?

Seemingly upset about everyone picking on their favorite community organizing group, House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) and House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) want to know if Conress’ efforts to stop ACORN from receiving any more federal funds are, get this… constitutional.

Specifically, Conyers and Frank have submitted a formal request to the Congressional Research Service (“CRS”) asking it to analyze the ACORN defunding measures recently passed by the House and Senate to determine “their possible unconstitutionality and whether they could constitute an unlawful bill of attainder.” 

In addition, the two Chairmen want CRS to analyze the “recent ‘sting’ activity concerning ACORN” — referring to the brilliant videos commissioned and released by Andrew Breitbart’s —  including a run down of  “federal and state laws that could apply to such videotaping and distribution of conversations without the consent of all parties.”

And they wonder why Congress’ job approval ratings are in the dump.

September 20th, 2009 at 6:05 pm
ACORN CEO vs. Rep. Darrell Issa

ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis debated Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA), one of the organization’s strongest congressional critics, this morning on Fox News Sunday.


September 20th, 2009 at 4:12 pm
ACORN’s Federal Money. What Federal Money?
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I didn’t even know that ACORN was getting a whole lot of federal money.”   — President Barack Obama, September 20, 2009

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