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Posted at 10:50 AM ET, 01/ 5/2011

Breaking: Trotsky also possibly a member of the New Black Panthers

By Adam Serwer

My posts on the New Black Panther case seem to have hit a mark. Conservative former voting section attorney J. Christian Adams, who has been hailed as a "whistleblower" by conservatives, took to his blog yesterday to accuse me of employing "Trotskyite" tactics:

In a previous article at Pajamas, I characterized Adam Serwer of the American Prospect as using Trotskyite tactics regarding the New Black Panther dismissal. He uncouples facts from reality to reassemble them into whatever whimsy, or devilish aim, he might have.

Needless to say, Adams's sputtering is enough to make the most dedicated liberal question whether government employees really are overpaid. What ideological differences within communism lead me to be identified with Trotskyism, as opposed to Maoism or Stalinism, based on my opinion that the conservative obsession with the New Black Panther case is nonsense?

I'm not going to bore Greg's readers with another lengthy post on this matter. Suffice it to say that, like Jennifer Rubin, Adams does not dispute the discrepancy between his account of Deputy Assistant Attorney General Julie Fernandes's remarks and that given by former Voting Section Chief Christopher Coates. Adams is, of course, personally familiar with the absence of any actual intimidated voters in the case, since he was involved in the original complaint. As The Huffington Post's Sam Stein reported, while he has since portrayed the case as a "slam dunk," in December 2008 internal e-mails show Adams was deeply worried that he didn't have enough evidence to go forward.

Adams does not dispute that the Obama Justice Department secured an injunction against King Samir Shabazz, the NBPP member with a baton, and he does not dispute that they requested an extension of the injunction against a black defendant, Ike Brown, in Mississippi, in order to prevent white voters from being disenfranchised. He finds these remedies inadequate, but he doesn't dispute that they were sought. 

He also does not dispute that the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility and Inspector General found that Bush-era Civil Rights Division head Bradley Schlozman had broken civil service laws with his politicized hiring practices. Like Coates, he simply believes that the letter of the law doesn't matter because there were too many of what Schlozman referred to as "crazy libs" in the division, anyway. Like other conservatives, he finds the narrowing of the NBPP case evidence of a sinister racist conspiracy, but is unperturbed by the significant overall drop in civil rights and voting section cases filed during the Bush administration.

In other words, Adams doesn't do much to dispute the basic facts other than to call me a "Trotskyite." Normally I wouldn't even respond to Adams's two-minutes hate. But given that Adams's testimony is the core of conservatives' argument that the voting section is racist, his decision to call me a communist based on the fact that I said something he didn't like is relevant to the credibility of the charges of racism he levels at his former colleagues. If disagreeing with Adams over the NBPP case is all it takes to be associated with Trotsky, it probably doesn't take much to get called a racist, either.

By Adam Serwer  | January 5, 2011; 10:50 AM ET
Categories:  Miscellaneous  
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Comments

Hey, it's your 15 minutes. Enjoy it. You can tell your grandkids.

Posted by: happyacres | January 5, 2011 11:07 AM | Report abuse

"If disagreeing with Adams over the NBPP case is all it takes to be associated with Trotsky, it probably doesn't take much to get called a racist, either."
=========
Ackerman's greatest hits: "Take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists."
=========
@adam:

Enough! This is torture.

Posted by: sbj3 | January 5, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

"his decision to call me a communist based on the fact that I said something he didn't like is relevant to the credibility of the charges of racism he levels at his former colleagues"

100% spot on.

These Republicans are overtly racist. There really cannot be any doubt.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | January 5, 2011 11:23 AM | Report abuse

lmao. What kind of cheap blog format is that guy writing on. The hyperlinks look like something from a blog in the early 90's. You're now joining the pigs in the mud pit and arguing in their arena.

Don't fight with pigs, it just makes you look like, well, a pig.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | January 5, 2011 11:32 AM | Report abuse

"I'm not going to bore Greg's readers with another lengthy post on this matter."

You just did.

Posted by: jnc4p | January 5, 2011 11:34 AM | Report abuse

That was kind of boring. Why don't you just debate Adams in the comments section of his blog? That way, you can put him in his place, but it won't bore us. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | January 5, 2011 11:55 AM | Report abuse

mikefromArlington, what do you think of the new format on the following web site?

http://speaker.gov

Posted by: clawrence12 | January 5, 2011 11:57 AM | Report abuse

"Why don't you just debate Adams in the comments section of his blog?"

Nobody reads that idiot's blog. Plum Line is one of the most-viewed political blogs. There's two obvious reasons right there.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | January 5, 2011 11:58 AM | Report abuse

"what do you think of the new format on the following web site?"

I couldn't help myself but to break down into tears because that's what grown men do...lol.

:P

Happy New Year and hope you all had a great Christmas. :)

Posted by: mikefromArlington | January 5, 2011 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Adam, might I suggest the I am rubber and you are glue line for your next retort?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | January 5, 2011 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Calling people names, in particular "communist," seems to be an old fall back for extremist right wingers with no real facts. It's like McCarthy waving a blank sheet of paper while talking about the list of names of communists...

Same old same old.

Posted by: Alex3 | January 5, 2011 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Those of you who say this blog is boring you, could you leave, then? Because you are boring the rest of us,as you do every day.

"What ideological differences within communism lead me to be identified with Trotskyism, as opposed to Maoism or Stalinism, based on my opinion that the conservative obsession with the New Black Panther case is nonsense?"

Adam, this is Winger Tactic #101: Do not engage in actual discussion. Distract by calling opponent a name pulled out of your as$.

This is all the once-intellectual 'conservative movement' has sunk into -- pointless, endless repetition of cynical conspiracy theories so dopey you know even they don't beleive them, but the rubes eat it with a shovel.

Posted by: fiona5 | January 5, 2011 12:16 PM | Report abuse

@fiona5: "Those of you who say this blog is boring you, could you leave, then? Because you are boring the rest of us,as you do every day."

The blog isn't boring. Just Adam Srewer's posts where he's trying to spin his personal name-calling contests into something newsworthy. ;)

And, if you're bored by us . . . why, if only someone had written a user script that allowed you to ignore other commenters with a click of a button. Oh, wait. Someone has.

:)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | January 5, 2011 12:29 PM | Report abuse

"what do you think of the new format on the following web site?"

They could use a little more server bandwidth. It's taken a minute and it still doesn't appear to be completely loaded. And nonsense going on in the background doesn't seem to know that there's a HTML5 dialog box open in the front (darkening everything in the background--except a series of numbers hiliting and de-hiliting).

I wanted Speaker of the House Ruth McClung, anyway. So, I was bound to be disappointed, no matter what. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | January 5, 2011 12:32 PM | Report abuse

"he's trying to spin his personal name-calling contests"

Actually there is this little matter called... wait what is it again?

Oh right: THE TRUTH.

As usual a rightie misses the forest from the trees.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | January 5, 2011 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Please stop this tit for tat. It is boring and Adams clearly has you beaten in writing skill and knowledge. It is depressing that a no name blogger is winning against a Washington Post employee. Can I have my subscription payment back?

Posted by: MoveOn2011 | January 5, 2011 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Adam, keep up the good work. This is a great post, you are doing God's work. Conservatives like Rubin and Adams need to be called out each time they lie about civil rights, the civil rights enforcement record of Bush's DOJ, and Obama's DOJ.

GOPers can't handle facts, it crushes their world view and self-esteem because they have been on the wrong side of history for over 50 years. The Bush DOJ civil rights division was a vicious joke, got busted for politicization, and J. Christian Adams was and is a DOJ political, right-wing hack.

A principled conservative, Abigail Thernstom, (her conservative credentials in civil rights literature and academic research are above and beyond reproach) wrote about the fraudulent NBPP case pimped by Adams in the Bible of conservatism, THE NATIONAL REVIEW. Adams and Rubin, read it and weep:

"The New Black Panther Case:
A Conservative Dissent

Forget about the New Black Panther Party case; it is very small potatoes. Perhaps the Panthers should have been prosecuted under section 11 (b) of the Voting Rights Act for their actions of November 2008, but the legal standards that must be met to prove voter intimidation — the charge — are very high.

In the 45 years since the act was passed, there have been a total of three successful prosecutions. The incident involved only two Panthers at a single majority-black precinct in Philadelphia. So far — after months of hearings, testimony and investigation — no one has produced actual evidence that any voters were too scared to cast their ballots. Too much overheated rhetoric filled with insinuations and unsubstantiated charges has been devoted to this case.

A number of conservatives have charged that the Philadelphia Black Panther decision demonstrates that attorneys in the Civil Rights Division have racial double standards. How many attorneys in what positions? A pervasive culture that affected the handling of this case? No direct quotations or other evidence substantiate the charge....

The two Panthers have been described as “armed” — which suggests guns. One of them was carrying a billy club, and it is alleged that his repeated slapping of the club against his palm constituted brandishing it in a menacing way. They have also been described as wearing “jackboots,” but the boots were no different from a pair my husband owns....

A disaffected former Justice Department attorney has written: “We had indications that polling-place thugs were deployed elsewhere.” “Indications”? Again, evidence has yet to be offered."

I realize this makes Adams and Rubin cry, nothing hurts more than a hi profile smack down by a conservative in good standing like Thurnstom. Get over it, GOPers, there is no there there.

For you right wing knuckleheads that worship Adams, Rubin; Lee Atwater and Bull Connor are with you. Here's Thurnstrom's NRO article.
http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/243408/new-black-panther-case-br-conservative-dissent-abigail-thernstrom

Posted by: gregw571 | January 5, 2011 3:07 PM | Report abuse

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