Tag Archives: Zuccotti Park


Naomi Wolf's "Rebuttal" is Pure Nonsense

The sound of journalistic credibility gasping its last breath.

NLN Naomi WolfNaomi Wolf’s rebuttal to the criticism she has garnered in response to her rant in the Guardian last week is non-responsive, and frankly, bizarre.  She writes specifically in response to Josh Holland of Alternet, but Holland’s criticism mirrors my criticism, as well as karoli (Crooks and Liars), Scott Lemieux (Lawyers, Guns, and Money), Corey Robin (Al Jazeera English), and Will Wilkinson (The Economist) among others.

Josh Holland’s article “Naomi Wolf’s Response to my Critique Largely Evades the Issues at Hand,” is a must read.  Holland writes,

It’s disappointing that Naomi Wolf’s response to my criticism of her November 25 Guardian column – and earlier blog-post — doesn’t address the many misstatements of fact, logical leaps and baseless assertions which I highlighted.

Wolf instead spends much time on a general discussion of heightened federal surveillance and the increased coordination between federal and local law enforcement agencies, which she says I am naïve not to acknowledge, and devotes an enormous amount of space to establishing that federal law enforcement agencies have had some sort of role in at least monitoring the Occupy Movement and offering some guidance to local law enforcement agencies.

Holland’s assessment is spot on.  Wolf’s article rambles on for eight pages, and ultimately, doesn’t say anything relevant.

Wolf leads off by criticizing a claim that neither Holland nor any of her critics has never made: that DHS had no involvement with the crackdowns on Occupy Wall Street locations: Continue reading


Naomi Wolf's 'Shocking Truths' on #OWS Crackdowns are False

I called bullshit and Bullshit finally responded: “It’s bullshit.”

Naomi Wolf’s feverish article charging that the crackdowns of  occupy locations were being coordinated by federal law enforcement agencies has captured the #OWS collective consciousness.

And, as it turns out, the sole basis for her article — Rick Ellis’s article in Examiner.com — was debunked by Ellis himself nine days before Wolf decided to feed her feverish fact-free article to the frenzied masses.

But let’s back up.

Naomi Wolf: Hunting for a scandal

As you may recall, Michael Moore tweeted on November 15 that the occupy crackdowns were being coordinated by DHS and greenlit by President Obama. When challenged, he pointed to journalist Rick Ellis’s article in Examiner.com.  Moore then appeared on Current TV and ran with the crackdown rumor.

Continue reading


#OWS: The Shocking Truth about Naomi Wolf's Journalistic Hackery [updated]

Rumormongering at its most despicable.

Two weeks ago, a rumor circulated that the Department of Homeland Security was “behind” the crackdown at Zuccotti Park. The rumor originated with Michael Moore who got it from a thinly-sourced article in Examiner.com. I wrote about it here and here.

The author of the Examiner.com article, Rick Ellis, published multiple updates to his thinly-sourced post, and promised that he would provide more information once he had it. That was on November 15. No further information has been provided.

I figured it had been settled.  As Joshua Holland, writing for Alternet noted, “There’s a lot of speculation, but very little substance to the tale of the “nationwide” crackdown on the Occupy movement.

So I figured this rumor would be put to bed.  I was wrong.

Today — ten days after the rumor had been debunked — Naomi Wolf saw fit to write an article so fraught with hyperbole — “what happened this week is the first battle in a civil war” — and so utterly fact-free that its publication should hang like an albatross around Naomi Wolf’s neck for the rest of her career.  It is Judith Miller-style hackery, and it is shameless.

Karoli has the story in a post aptly titled “How Bullshit Magically Turns into Fact“:

Naomi Wolf wrote a nonsensical piece today that’s being spammed all over Twitter. It asserts that there is a deliberate plot afoot via collusion by the United States Congress, the Department of Homeland Security and our oligarchical overlords to undermine the very populist, leaderless Occupy Wall Street movement. One of her key pieces of evidence is an unsupported and unverified report that 18 mayors coordinated their crackdowns with the Department of Homeland Security. There’s only one problem with that: It’s nothing more than innuendo. Here, let me show you. Continue reading


More on that #OWS/DHS Coordination Thing: We've Been Had

C’mon, ya’ll. REALLY!?

 Just to add to my post about federal coordination of the raid, the “Obama DOJ DHS coordinated the raid” narrative has taken off.  Here’s Wonkette with a post about DHS and coordination. (And here’s Juan Cole citing Wonkette.)  Wonkette acknowledges the Examiner as a disreputable source, but then points to an AP report which Wonkette claims verifies everything ”except the specific mention of DHS coordination.”

::blink blink::

The “DHS coordination” aspect is the aspect that is supported solely by the Examiner!  Get it? The Wonkette headline reads “Surprise, Homeland Security Coordinates #OWS Crackdowns” but the only citation for Homeland Security involvement comes from the fucking Examiner.  The AP report is a generic article about coordination by police chiefs in the various cities (which doesn’t strike me as all that out of the ordinary, by the way.)  The AP report says absolutely nothing about FBI or Homeland Security involvement.  NOTHING.

Again, the Examiner claimed the following: Continue reading


About that 'DHS Coordinated' Crackdown on #OWS at Zuccotti Park…

I’ve called bullshit — it’s still ringing.

 Twitter is abuzz with news that the Occupy raids were coordinated with the help of the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI, and that Obama “greenlit” the raids.  (See also this.)

As far as I can tell, the source for this claim is an article in Examiner.com, which quotes an anonymous Department of Justice official who claims that the multi-city raid of Occupy camps “was coordinated with help from Homeland Security, the FBI and other federal police agencies.”

From (the disreputable) Examiner.com:

Over the past ten days, more than a dozen cities have moved to evict “Occupy” protesters from city parks and other public spaces. As was the case in last night’s move in New York City, each of the police actions shares a number of characteristics. And according to one Justice official, each of those actions was coordinated with help from Homeland Security, the FBI and other federal police agencies.

The official, who spoke on background to me late Monday evening, said that while local police agencies had received tactical and planning advice from national agencies, the ultimate decision on how each jurisdiction handles the Occupy protests ultimately rests with local law enforcement.

According to this official, in several recent conference calls and briefings, local police agencies were advised to seek a legal reason to evict residents of tent cities, focusing on zoning laws and existing curfew rules. Agencies were also advised to demonstrate a massive show of police force, including large numbers in riot gear. In particular, the FBI reportedly advised on press relations, with one presentation suggesting that any moves to evict protesters be coordinated for a time when the press was the least likely to be present.

Is that true? Maybe. But given that this information came from Examiner.com, the proper response is “citation needed.” Why? Because Examiner.com is Fox News light. From Media Matters: Continue reading


My Thoughts on Occupy Wall Street and Permanent Camps

Where do we go from here?

As I was slapping this post together, I saw breaking news that the judge reversed the temporary restraining order it had issued this morning preventing the Zucotti occupiers from being “evicted,” and ruled that the protestors are not permitted to camp overnight.  (Here’s a link to the court order.)

I can’t say that I’m surprised.  Let’s hope Occupy Wall Street can pick itself up, dust itself off, and figure out what’s next in terms of ameliorating income inequality and eliminating corporate malfeasance.

[chirpstory after the jump]

Continue reading