Confirmed! Conspiracy And Kool-Aid In McInnis Audio Flap
Scott McInnis’ unforced error—reported extensively late last week—prompted a renewed interest in the nature of post-campaign finance reform verbal tap-dancing that candidates (especially potential candidates) must perform in order to skirt possible campaign violations. It has also raised concerns over what exactly being a “friend” or a “fan” or a “follower” of someone on a social networking site—in this case Facebook—really means, and if that “affiliation” constitutes an explicit or even implicit endorsement of the person(s) being followed (the GJ Sentinel alleges that is does).
For Ari Armstrong, the screwy laws that govern campaign language constitutes nothing more than censorship.
For Ben DeGrow, the Facebook evidence is not only weak but entirely meaningless, as quite a few individuals follow various and sundry groups or causes on Facebook merely to keep tabs, not as part of any formal endorsement or show of support.
That CompleteColorado.com’s own follow-up to the McInnis story includes screencaps of other prominent Coloradans, some of whom have been mentioned as part of McInnis’ team, as “followers” of the Draft Sen. Josh Penry page clearly bears this out (Sean Tonner, Monica Owens). This early in a primary session bloggers, like many others, will end up following all potential candidates in a given race simply because of the ability to gain information. This is most likely the reason that the GJ Sentinel itself appears in the list of “Draft Penry” supporters. This is probably also the same reason why Pols creator Jason Bane joined the Ryan Frazier page.
But all of this is just a diversion, according to ColoradoPols. There really is a much simpler solution.
According to the koolaid from Pols: Todd Shepherd and Justin Longo own CompleteColorado.com. They also both work for the Independence Institute. Todd refuses to disclose the source of the McInnis voice mail, but it is undoubtedly from a disgruntled Penry supporter, leaked to GOP-friendly media (it might have been faked, but McInnis himself confirmed the message was his). Sen. Penry appeared at the anti-stimulus “pork rally” in February, and aside from the “swastika guy” and Bush-Penry recession smear, is really nothing more than a minion from I.I. due to the fact that the institute’s logo appeared on a podium behind which Penry had given a short speech. Todd and Justin are both supporters of the “Draft Penry” Facebook group, and are therefore—given Penry’s I.I. association—clearly Penry insiders with an axe to grind against Scott McInnis. There is probably also a connection to 9/11 Truth, the Illuminati, Freemasons, the symbols at DIA, and global warming in there as well.
See I told you it was simpler!
Paging Robert Langdon . . .
What is really going on here are a couple things. Pols wishes to stoke a fire of resentment between possible Penry and McInnis camps, especially given the duo's own personal history (Penry was a staffer for McInnis). CompleteColorado.com has no axe to grind, and given its own investigative reporting accomplishments, would not have been an inappropriate venue to give the audio under any circumstances. Journalistic integrity was at stake. While the GJ Sentinel’s reporter isn’t guilty of any ethics violations, it is clear that his investigative reporting skills are, as well as an understanding of social networking, clearly lacking. Pols is only too willing too play “gotcha!” in an attempt to attack Penry and smear CC as nothing more than partisan and even intrapartisan hacks.
The only hackery here is the weak evidence provided by the GJ Sentinel and the lemming-like effluence emanating from Pols.
Evidence? What evidence? We need only blind accusations and ideologically-soothing conspiracy theories to carry us through the day!