September 3, 2011 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - Last week we authored a piece detailing the most recent attempt by Islamists [aided by their leftist support base] to brand their critics as Islamophobic bigots [see, Anti-American Hate Factory - Center For American Progress - In Bed With The Jihadists].
That effort, the release of a supposedly factual report [see, "Fear, Inc. The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America," http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2011/08/islamophobia.html] was underwritten by John Podesta's Center For American Progress [CAP]. This very public move is part of a much larger intellectual battle by radical Muslim activists to establish a cultural beachhead promoting the foundational Shari'a proscription against "insulting" Islam.
As we wrote in the aforementioned article:
"The essence of the "report," finds the authors conflating [in a very inelegant manner] criticism of actions taken by Muslims with religious bigotry, and of course all the usual suspects are now chiming in. In the lexicon of the Islamist enemy any criticism of their agenda is irrefutable proof of Islamophobia, a logically absurd circular argument.
Consider the ridiculous nature of the claim itself; that of an America steeped in Islamophobia. Such allegations are demonstrably untrue, assuming facts mean anything, because the FBI has been tracking "hate crime" statistics for many years now and the actual incidence of real violence perpetrated against U.S. Muslims is so low as to be nonexistent.
Given the level of Islamist provocation, which includes the initial attacks on American soil, the very fact that bigotry against Muslims is statistically so low speaks eloquently about the good and generous nature of this country.
For example see the below statistics, taken from the 2008 FBI hate crime report [source, FBI statistics, http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/hate-crime/2008, also see, https://www.pipelinenews.org/?page=cairhate10.12.10.htm, CAIR Continues Big Lie Regarding "Hate Crimes" Committed Against Muslims - FBI Stats Prove That Widespread American Islamophobia Is Nonexistent]
Anti-Other Religion 212
Anti-Multiple Religions, Group 67
Of these 123 incidents, very few even rose to the level of aggravated assault...there is no there there, and there is likewise nothing to this report but more of the same pus, bile and bilge which is boilerplate for these folks..."
Perhaps CAP's key assertion is that a small group of - often Jewish - Muslim haters have been heavily funded by shadowy organizations with an Islamophobic perspective, intending to fan the fires of religious hate.
But what is CAP?
Though often innocuously referenced by the MSM as a simple think tank, Podesta himself makes it clear that CAP was designed from its inception to be the Progressives' "head of the spear"," calling it a think tank on steroids.
CAP was arguably the key force guiding Barack Obama's meteoric rise to the Presidency and the enactment of his divisive policy initiatives. The organization had tremendous input into managing his campaign. It had a virtual strangle hold on the administration's major personnel appointments and the development of many of its policy positions. "...Just as candidate Obama depended on CAP during the campaign for opposition research and talking points, President-elect Obama has effectively contracted out the management of his own government's formation to Podesta. "The Podesta group was formed to bring Democrats back into the presidency, that was its purpose of being," says Stephen Hess, an expert on presidential transitions at the Brookings Institution, a much more traditional think tank..."
[source, http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1861305,00.html, Michael Scherer, Inside Obama's Idea Factory in Washington, Time Magazine November, 21, 2008]
"...Just as candidate Obama depended on CAP during the campaign for opposition research and talking points, President-elect Obama has effectively contracted out the management of his own government's formation to Podesta. "The Podesta group was formed to bring Democrats back into the presidency, that was its purpose of being," says Stephen Hess, an expert on presidential transitions at the Brookings Institution, a much more traditional think tank..."
So great is CAP's clout that Podesta served as co-chair of the Obama transition team - actually a small army of over 1,000 individuals committed to advancing a utopian agenda via a more powerful, less accountable and greatly expanded federal bureaucracy.
"At the same time, and largely under the radar, CAP worked furiously during the elections to deliver talking points to overworked journalists...The hosts and guests of the Sunday news shows received routine briefings by CAP researchers. Liberal talk radio hosts and Democratic surrogates also receive daily talking points from the group. Meanwhile, liberal blogs have long become an echo chamber for CAP's own Internet outreach program..." [source, Time Magazine]Consider John Podesta's Congressional testimony regarding CAP's influence:
"...In total, President Obama's transition team consisted of over 1000 people. It was governed by a transition board, which I co-chaired along with Valerie Jarrett and Pete Rouse, both of whom now serve in senior positions in the White House. There were 517 people working on agency review teams [and] 134 people in policy working groups...We endeavored to create a highly disciplined process...Ten teams of various sizes were organized around issues and agencies to provide the president-elect and his advisors with the information necessary to make policy, budgetary, and personnel decisions in advance of the inauguration...Within the administrations first 10 days, the president signed nine executive orders and nine presidential memoranda the policy working groups had helped to prepare..." [source, http://www.americanprogressaction.org/issues/2010/04/challenges_lessons.html]
A few examples of CAP and Team Obama's revolving door policy:
1. Van Jones, a neo-Marxist and currently Senior Fellow with CAP, resigned under fire as Team Obama's Green Energy Czar.
2. Melody Barnes, Chief of the WH Domestic Policy Council, former CAP Exec. Vice President and the late Sen. Edward Kennedy's chief counsel.
3. Carol Browner, EPA chief, member of CAP's Board of Directors.
4. Neera Tanden, Obama campaign director for domestic policy [including ObamaCare], formerly worked under Kathleen Sebelius at HHS, resigned to become CAP's Chief Operating Officer.
5. Sonal Shah, former Associate Dir. Economic and National Security Policy at CAP, Obama/Biden transition team member, currently managing Google's Global Initiative efforts.
Even from such a brief overview it becomes a difficult to sort out where CAP ends and where Team Obama begins, they have to a large degree become synonymous.
From what source does CAP derive such clout?
Certainly Mr. Podesta's stature as Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff enhances the organization's bona fides, however as the late California legislative leader Jesse Unruh was quoted, "money is the mother's milk of politics," and that certainly seems to be the case here.
According to CAP's 2009 990 the group's revenue [gifts, grants, contributions and membership fees] from 2005-2009 was $134,518,524, an astounding amount for an organization which has yet to see its tenth birthday. In a very real manner, CAP is the shadow component of the Obama regime and it's drowning in cash.
The organization's financial health and joined-at-the-hip realtionship with Team Obama renders ridiculous the charge that the voice of hate which CAP now helps to project can't be heard because it has been silenced by financial clout of "Fear Inc's" targets [those always at the top of the Islamists hit list, Steven Emerson, Robert Spencer, etc.] all of whom are poverty stricken compared to their fat-cat accusor.
By its funding of "Fear, Inc..." CAP has made himself the hands-down poster child for the unholy alliance between the left and the Islamists, a relationship that links - tactically - seemingly disparate groups against a common enemy, in this case Western culture. By its actions in this matter, CAP has made itself part of the mechanism whereby Shari'a principles might be advanced by an Islamist enemy which is committed to jihad until in their minds, "God's religion is made supreme."