DU Boothill

A fellowship of unjustly "tombstoned" DemocraticUnderground members. We use this space to talk about our feelings in reaction to the experience of first joining in the wonderful DU community and then expelled with no warning, no reason given and no response to our pleas for reinstatement. We feel this constitutes Anti-Democracy by DU Admin.

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Is DU Sick of Cult-Probing Dems?

Recently posted on DU- 2004 Election Results and Discussion:

Im sick of fair weather Dems. Reasoned thoughts from a Moderate.

Do not blame Kerry anymore than you blame yourself for the election defeat.

Everyone on this board was very energetic about Kerry. No speculation after the convention about Skull and Bones. No talk of him possibly throwing the election. Once WE lose though, people are spouting conspiracy theories left and right.

Was there election fraud, voter suppression and fishy acts leading up to and on Nov 2? Yes, of course.
Was it mostly perpetrated by the GOP? Probably
Did Rove, GWB and the RNC have direct involvement? Possibly
Did the illuminati, Skull and Bones, or the New World Order have anything to do with it? No.
Does the illuminati exist? no.
Is S&B anymore than a bunch college boys playing fort? no.
Did Kerry throw the election? OF COURSE NOT

[snip]

The Democratic party has a recent history of being splintered - the GOP has been able to stick together... that should be your BIGGEST conspiracy theory relating to why WE lost.

I dont want anyone of you to leave the Dem party. However, if youre just going to bitch and complain and blame the leaders of the party of criminal acts and conspiracy. Then leave. If you can channel your anger and your passion into doing good for the party, as we all saw before Nov 2nd then by all means stay. Your extremism only hurts the image of the DNC.

Yes, I like the DLC. Yes, I am a moderate. No, I do not hate Liberals, but I wish that contemporary mainstream liberalism didnt have to be so riddled with irrational thoughts and theories.

[end]

This recent post by Machiavelli05 on the DU Forum "2004 Election Results and Discussion" may shed some light related to the bias behind some of the tombstoning that has been going on recently at DU. Basically, Machiavelli05 is ranting about the continued spouting of conspiracy theories by liberal DUers regarding Kerry's loss of the election. What is particularly surprising is that he brings up various cult-related organizations such as Skull & Bones, and the Illuminati, and even includes the New World Order as the basis for a potential conspiracy theory that Kerry may have "thrown" the election due to his affiliation with one or more of these groups. I have to admit that I do not read everything posted on this forum, but I honestly don't recall a lot of DUers harping much on THIS particular type of theory as to why Kerry lost the election. Could machiavelli05 be particularly sensitive to this issue for some reason? Could this be a pre-emptive strike in order to disuade any further discussion of cult or non-government organizational reasons for the election being corrupted?

Now, you may ask, how does this relate to DUers being tombstoned? As we know, Jamboi was the only DUer (now tombstoned) relaying information from investigative reporter Wayne Madsen [see http://jamboi.dailykos.com for more info] who is starting to look at Dominionist and other far right religious connections to the Bush Administration, and tracing the flow of funds which were allegedly used in widely fixing the election across many states. The central point of this conspiracy theory is that these "Dominionists" represent a well-connected fringe or cult, if you will, of Christian right-wing Fundamentalists. Not only has Jamboi been mysteriously tombstoned for reasons not completely understood, but several relatively new DUers who seemingly did nothing more than stand up for his integrity [see the following posts on this blog] were also immediately banned from the website, with no explanations provided.

Ok, so maybe the Illuminati doesn't exist, but Sun Myung Moon certainly does [see http://www.iapprovethismessiah.com] who happens to be a billionaire that owns United Press International as well as the Washington Times, and he seems to be extending his realm of power to members of Congress as well as the Bush family.

I have seen a list of members of the Council for National Policy (the organization which plans the strategy for the Religious Right) being investigated by another working in parallel with Madsen. The backgrounds of each member list a plethora of various religious organizations and cults which ought to make any mainstream conservative Christian think twice about what Satanic strategizing is really going on behind the scenes in Washington. The organization Skull & Bones is mentioned several times, but there are many others, none the least of which is that of the "Moonies," which would appear to play a more dominant role. Whether or not Kerry has been effected by these groups is really beside the point, what is more to the point is how this web of conspiracies may be affecting our democracy.

Stay tuned.....



JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

"I cannot sleep, nor eat, nor speak...all I can do is write.":JEI

Originally posted at jamboi.mydd.com on Mon. Dec. 20th, 2004
JamBoi-In-Exile: Day 4

Dr. Lilian Friedberg wrote me about having been similarly exiled by DU, and shared another point of similarity: The profound disturbance this fraudulent election has had on our personal lives.  People have questioned my non-stop personal activism on this subject and I wrote a humorous diary on this sleepless intensity. Here Friedberg accurately expresses what I've experiencing (and have gotten dinged for) very well:

"I cannot sleep, nor eat, nor speak to the ones that I love: all I can do is write. I have a bag of carrots and some bread, I nibble and chew, longing all the while just to dine, sipping fine wine beside a window to the world. Extra! Extra! Read all about it. I am writing for my life. For the life of the planet and the dignity of humanity. Your violations will be revealed and we will bring you to the most poetic justice the world has ever seen. Our good name shall be redeemed because we, too, write with GOD on our side. But ours is not the god of vengeance, it is the god of justice, of freedom, of peace. We will neither retreat, nor surrender. There will be no white flag. Not this time."



Worse than Watergate? Yep. Worse Yet: Worse than Hitler
by  Dr. Lilian Friedberg
www.OpEdNews.com



[snip]

All I can think about is you. You have invaded my mind. Occupied my consciousness. I cannot put you out of my head. You and your crimes. Soldiers dead and wounded,  murdered civilians, tortured prisoners, lives shattered throughout the world, scatter the corpses make the pile higher! And let's not forget Andrew Veal, the guy who put a bullet in his head at Ground Zero in tragic salute to your victory march--onward we march, onward pissed off soldiers, marching on to war. You have littered the planet with lies--but the bigger crime--you have done it in our name and on our dime. And now you seek to cleanup: every scrap of truth shall be destroyed. How vastly you have misunderestimated these seekers of truth. You thought you weren't leaving a trace. But in your first term, we learned to survive on the scraps, miniscule particles of justice and peace--we have become vigilant vultures, divebombing to snatch any last morsel of beauty and truth.

Then, in a flash of brilliance, one fleeting moment in time, it appeared. There was one who could not sleep through that nightmarish November night--there's something amiss here she said, and sounded the alarm! Millions have since answered the call. We have connected the dots. Performing to our utmost in a public display of persistence, pertinacity and prayer --we have said it: the banality of evil shall not prevail. Indeed we have dared to issue the Eleventh command: Thou shalt not prey upon the planet!

In those sparse moments of sanity when I come up for breath, I ask myself just how much of the American taxpayer's money you and your programmers have squandered to orchestrate this, your most catastrophically successful fiasco  to date. Were anyone to invest as much time, energy and ingenuity as it has taken to make the case against you into comparing the millions points of tragic parallel between you and Adolf Hitler, right down to that smug, self-confident smirk,  what they would find is that you surpass him by a margin of more than fifty five million to one because Hitler set out to slaughter certain sectors of the population--you want to obliterate everyone and everything. Your aim is total annihilation. Totalitarianism to the tenth degree.

I cannot sleep, nor eat, nor speak to the ones that I love: all I can do is write. I have a bag of carrots and some bread, I nibble and chew, longing all the while just to dine, sipping fine wine beside a window to the world. Extra! Extra! Read all about it. I am writing for my life. For the life of the planet and the dignity of humanity. Your violations will be revealed and we will bring you to the most poetic justice the world has ever seen. Our good name shall be redeemed because we, too, write with GOD on our side. But ours is not the god of vengeance, it is the god of justice, of freedom, of peace. We will neither retreat, nor surrender. There will be no white flag. Not this time.

It is a remarkable feat: you have succeeded in dividing this country, not merely along the lines of the Mason Dixon line, but into parallel universes. Those who know the truth, and those who believe the lies. Those who know are glued to their screens: they have gone underground, creeping and crawling, scouring these nefarious bowels to smoke out this craven scourge. Hungry for truth, starving for justice, we have found it. It is here. Indeed, in our search we have discovered it and brought it to light. The others, portent and petrified of the truth, fearing what the million points of light are sure to reveal, go about their business. They have no emails to send, no letters to write. They go to their jobs, teaching the classes, cleaning the carpets, caring for the kids and thank god that they do because otherwise the world would come to an immediate halt--would be sucked into the incendiary backdraft of all you have done.



The lines of communication have broken down: we live worlds, indeed, universes apart.


 (snip)

We know we are winning. Indeed, we have long since won. But no one up there can see it because they've buried their heads in  "conspiracy theorist" spin.



[snip]

My prayers are with you, and, as always, with this country and her people. Today I stand proud despite what you've done. Because we've made the case, and yes, we have won.

Sincerest regards,
Dr. Lilian Friedberg
Reporting from the Democratic Mandate of the United States of America

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Monday, December 20, 2004

Autocracy isn't Democracy, JIE: DU

Originally posted at jamboi.mydd.com Mon Dec. 20th,


JamBoi-In-Exile: Day 3


One of the time honored values of democratic liberalism is fair mindedness, objectivity, courage... break out your JS Mills to see what real, classical Liberalism really consists of.  Liberalism and democracy has and should mean openness, due process, equanimity, humanitarianism, and above all generosity and liberty.  Let see... Liberal...Liberty...hmm... there seems to be a connection between these two words.(!)


I had a professor in college who loved to say something to the effect "If you meet a true liberal, you should take your hat off for them" to honor them because they are so rare, courageous and altruistic. He himself was a conservative who didn't agree with liberalism, but still valued civil discourse.  He believed in honest debate and the ability to agree to disagree. I wonder how his attitude would be met at DU.




Posted today in DU's Ask the Admin forum:

"Skinner  ADMIN

Dec-19-04 09:21 AM

5. Because we consider it a private matter between us and that member.


It is unseemly to post a laundry list of accusations against someone who is not able to defend himself."



Poll
Politically I consider myself
·0%Communist
·11%Socialist
·44%Liberal/Progressive
·11%Moderate/Centrist
·0%Libertarian
·11%Conservative
·0%Traditionalist
·22%Fascist
Votes: 9

Hmmm.... Again I would agree 100% with Skinner in saying it should be a private matter, except that Skinner has not taken what I in my extensive leadership of on-line forums would consider step 1: informing the member of what this "laundry list" contains and give the "disrupter" an opportunity to change their behavior to match his standards. He compounds this by making a public insinuation of his unspecified misunderstanding and unfounded distrust of me. Is this behavior of dumping a DU donor with no warning or explanation democratic? Liberal?  Where is the honor, generosity, humanitarianism, courage, or in a word liberality in these sudden, silent purges that and are followed by public insinuations of "laundry lists" of fault.  


If it were just me suffering this kind of mistreatment that would be bad enough.  I'd still feel the mourning from abrupt forceful separation and Skinner's loud silent cold shoulder.  But when I start to recieve other people's notes and e-mails telling me that the experience is frighteningly common, I start to feel a whole different level of concern.  This does not look anything like liberalism or democracy to me.  It looks like quite the opposite: autocracy. How can we achieve macro democracy if we do not strive to achieve micro democracy in our lives and our institutions.  Surely we are what we practice are we not?  How will practicing autocratic practices bring us closer to instituting democracy and liberalism?  It simply can't.


I am a very faulty democrat/liberal myself.  As a matter of fact I do not even presume to call myself a Liberal because I feel I'm unworthy of claiming the level of altruistic virtue that would require of me.  To me the ACLU is the gold standard of what it means to be liberal.  They'll fight for anyone's rights whether or not they agree with them.  I don't know if I could be that fair-minded. I am a self-identified "Radical Moderate."  I try to apply a progressive attitude without throwing out tradition and continuity arbitrarily.  So probably I am in no position to throw stones at Skinner having made numerous mistakes in being overly autocratic myself at various points.  Nevertheless it seems to me that I am putting forth a very reasonable reinstatement request to Skinner and DU with full acknowledgement of my faults, sincere promise to alter any behavior Skinner objects to and to strive to treat him and all other DU members with respect.  I am trying to practice liberality, and extend a generous application of forgiveness towards him and the Administration at DU.


At the same time there is this disturbing fact that others are experiencing very similar autocratic behavior from the DU administration. Not_Without_A_Fight was unceremoniously dumped simultaneously as me.  She wrote an angry but well-reasoned comment to one of my previous diaries.  Since that has not gotten very much exposure I'll represent it here.  I was loathe to express these kinds of criticisms when I didn't have experience beyond mine to point to.  But when numbers of people report similar problems I start to sit up and take notice.


Her comment follows below.  Though a bit on the harsh side I think she has a good point.  These accumulating reports would seem to question the very underpinnings of DemocraticUnderground.com when alternative points of view are suppressed and driven truly underground.  Is this democracy/liberalism or is it autocracy?  If we can't practice democracy among ourselves how will we ever be able to lead our nation in a democratic way?


JamBoi



Not_Without_A_Fight posted:

The DU Brand of Censorship is Unacceptable


I too was recently ejected from DU -- without benefit of explanation. I find this DU practice ('tombstoning') exceptionally arbitrary with a tendency toward the paranoid.


One would assume that DU would support investigation of voter fraud. However, if the comment above (from deepthroat) accurately characterizes the reason for JamBoi's ejection -- it would seem that only certain avenues of investigation are allowed in their forum. I can assure you, my dear readers, that in the normal course of an investigator's work, many blind alleys are traveled in order to piece together the truth.


While on DU, I never once posted on the issue of Madsen. Far from being a disrupter, my last post titled 'Are we pivoting away from 'our cause' in trying to figure out Bev Harris?' wherein I simply wanted to encourage people to refocus on the issue at hand -- the voter fraud issue and the ongoing fight in Ohio -- rather than spending so many cycles trashing or guessing at Bev's motives was to my mind an uniting effort. Frankly, it is inconceivable to me that this would be unacceptable to the DU PTB (Powers That Be).


If there is a certain flavor of Democrat or certain caliber of thought that must be maintained by DU participants -- then that should be spelled out in the rules. I read the rules on 'disruptors', and while I do not see how any of my posts qualified, the description of a disruptor is far too vague to offer adequate guidance for one to self-censor well enough to avoid DU rejection.


This simply means that DU maintains the right to be arbitrary, unfair and censor-at-will. Funny, I would have predicted that the last stand, on freedom of speech rights, would be made by the liberals.


The fact that DU seems to want to play the 'Man Behind The Curtain' Game -- guiding discussions in certain directions and shutting down other discussions -- is well scary. If I were a conspiracy theorist, I might draw some conclusions from this behavior. However, the mere the fact that DU does this as a practice should be quite clear to everyone.


For me, the DU brand of censorship and manipulation is unacceptable.


I have been a registered Democrat for more than 30 years. However, my short but educational experience with Democratic Underground, has made me very seriously consider re-registering as a Green.


Not_Without_A_Fight

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Saturday, December 18, 2004

DU Dumping: The Silent Purge

This article was originally posted on jamboi.mydd.com on Saturday 18, Dec. 2004

JamBoi-in-exile, Day 2



From the DU Admin forum:

"Skinner

3. We generally do not discuss why people are banned(...) And we do not intend to in this situation.But I will say that members do not have access to all the facts, and any effort by members to discuss why jamboi or anyone else was banned would just be speculation, and would most likely not be correct."

You know I would have absolute respect for Skinner's position and be in full agreement with it except for one little thing.  As a matter of fact I would not want peple to be able to ask for the reason someone was kicked off and have it shared with the world and I think Skinner's point is absolutely right on this.  Except for one eensy teensy little thing...

JamBoi-in-exile, Day 2



From the DU Admin forum:

"Skinner

3. We generally do not discuss why people are banned(...) And we do not intend to in this situation.But I will say that members do not have access to all the facts, and any effort by members to discuss why jamboi or anyone else was banned would just be speculation, and would most likely not be correct."

You know I would have absolute respect for Skinner's position and be in full agreement with it except for one little thing.  As a matter of fact I would not want peple to be able to ask for the reason someone was kicked off and have it shared with the world and I think Skinner's point is absolutely right on this.  Except for one eensy teensy little thing...

Poll
If you were enjoying an online forum, were a $$ donating memeber , and you were suddenly banned with no forewarning or explanation, would you be upset? Here are some actual answers I've gotten:
·0% Eh... I'm not into participating that much anyway. No skin off my nose.
·8% No, why should I be? They own it and are not accountable to anyone besides themselves.
·0%I wouldn't care if I got thrown off a board. Its not that big of a deal. There are plenty out there and I'd just find another one.
·0% I find this annoying but I'll get over it. Maybe I needed to check out other boards anyway.
·91% I think it is a poor business practice to to treat their most caring members so shabbily. If this practice is common they will end up alienating a lot of folks.
·0% Absolutely, these are for-profit enterprises and "the customer is always right."
·0% I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore! Where's my lawyers number?
Votes: 12


I've run a number of on-line communities myself and had to take difficult stances some of which turned out to be mistakes some even colosal errors.  So I have tons o' sympathy for Skinner and his position.  


Except for one thing: he has never explained to me what I did that was "disruptive" to get me booted, or to let me correct my behavior.  If my prolific posting is a problem I'm more than happy to limit myself, even severely.  I'm even willing to take the Madsen stuff elsewhere.  I'm willing to limit my criticisms of the DNC (contrary to the implication in one of Skinner's posts I never have, nor do I now advocate leaving the Democratic party -- I just asked for people to tell the DNC to get involved in the recount/VoteScam04 investigations -- big difference between saying "give them feedback" and saying "leave the party").  But how can I fix something when Skinner won't even tell me what is wrong? My take on this is that in the tense atmosphere we're in right now there's so much distrust floating around that no one knows who to trust and that Skinner jumped to false conclusions about me and anyone else who expressed support for me.


I'm not as fiery as Not_Without_A_Fight who left a comment on one of my other threads complaining about her getting tombstoned with no warning or explanation, and I have more sympathy for Skinner's position than she does, but I do have to agree that to be fair and to set a good community standard it only makes sense to provide people with warnings and explanations of what rules they have violated and the change in behavior that the Admins are looking for.


I personally know of now four individuals who've been summarily tombstoned with no explanation all appearently because they spoke up for me.  Not_Without_A_Fight, pipes and geo. This is really a crazy thing and I hope that we can dialog with Skinner and straighten this out.  Here's hoping.


The following is a tale of woe from geo who has had a similar tombstoning experience.  Of all people, geo.  Really I have to say that's crazy.  Geo has always been ultra polite and well mannered on DU and can in no way be called "disruptive".  The only thing he ever did "wrong" was to post some positive, reconciling things about me after I got tombstoned.  Here's his sad story below.


JamBoi



  From:     geo

  Date:     Sat Dec 18 2004, 8:18 AM PST  show

  Subject:     Re: Tombstoning  


Hi (others)

I have hesitated telling anyone yet, because the administrators have yet to get back to me, but I have been tombstoned as well. Nobody has told me why, and I have never received a moderator warning. I really don't get it, and after seeing your question for the moderators about Jamboi I felt I should get in touch since I had your e-mail address still in my box. It's been over 24 hours since I have noticed my posting privileges gone, and I still have yet to receive even the first communication from DU staff. I am very upset. As many know I am smack-dab in the middle of a project with other DU members to give California's election results an audit, and with the very last of my homework being done this weekend (yay!!), I was very much looking forward to seeing that project advance at a full-time pace. (If anyone has wondered why I have been posting yet, three words: finals, senior thesis.)


Something is wonky here. I've spoken with Jamboi personally (we're both CA based) and when I was made aware of the drama (after 1 phone message from Bozos from Bush and four from Jamboi) I checked into DU. I received a PM from Jamboi and tried to reply and he had been zapped. I poked around the site enough to figure out what was up, and judged it to be an apparant misunderstanding between these guys, who have both been nothing but nice with me personally, on and off DU. I wrote Skinner a PM just to say that I had recent conversations with both now former members and shared my positive experience. I was very respectful, polite, appreciative and was just trying to be helpful. I also tried to calm down the drama on the thread by posting 2 comments, equally polite, respectful and appreciative. In between these two comments I sent an alert to the moderators to let them know the drama is unfolding in the thread and suggest it be reviewed for locking. Then I get zapped too the next morning.


I've made very limited posts the last few days, and am reasonably certain the loss of priviliges has something to do with this incident.


This is wrong. DU is funded by its members because it is an open and inviting community where ideas can be exchanged without such swift penalty.
I understand why Bozos for Bush was zapped, and there seems no repair to that relationship. Jamboi was apparently zapped (as far as I can tell)
because Skinner 1) Did not like the fact that Jamboi criticized the Democratic Party, and 2) had instances of two logins from his IP address.
The criticism of the party is one that several have shared (though personally I see Skinner's point about splitting forces), and should be safe discussion in the forum. Perhaps putting some well deserved pressure on party leadership to "get with it" wouldn't hurt. As far as having two different users login from the same IP, he has a friend who is on DU as well and has logged in from the same LAN and/or PC at times. It's my understanding that said friend has a very obviously different writing style and posting habits, posting very rarely as compared to the more prolific Jamboi. On the phone with him, I could hear his friend in the background occasionally making comments about how unfair she thought this whole situation was; she was zapped too.


Below I will post the letters I sent to Skinner (who I don't know but still have major respect for, despite my intense feeling I have been wronged) and the other admin. At this point, I too am concerned that important dissenting voices are being zapped without substantial consideration or other efforts to mitigate.


Ironically, I had just applied to be a moderator. I am very supportive of the site, its values, and the leadership, but I too am baffled over my banning and the serious lack of communication that followed it. I would have preferred to receive and would have followed any warning a moderator or administrator would have sent, but even to date, no such communication has arrived.


I feel strongly at this point that we should continue to support the site, even financially, but I agree with the right of members to question excessive tombstoning. What members pay for is a "big tent" environment where members like Jamboi can offer reasonable dissent on party actions. And I hate to sound at all self-centered, but my banning has left me even more baffled. Me???


DU is a wonderful community of people who don't take democracy as some spectator sport, only to be absorbed through the proverbial box courtesy MSM. It is, and hopefully will continue to be a bastion for idea exchange within this movement, but I fear it will not continue to be when people get cast out of the community without any warning, for very little apparent reason, and for simple misunderstandings. This is not what its members are paying for.


Please feel free to repost any of this communication you feel is appropriate. If you do I would like to ask that an administrator call me or write me so we can resolve this. I feel strongly that I have been wronged.


Warmly,


(geo)

George
p.s. I must note that I am no longer advocating any attempt at reconciliation between Skinner/DU and Bozos for Bush at this point in time,
largely because I believe it to be truly unattainable at this point.

p.p.s. Hi (Xxxxxx). I am cc'ing you on this since you asked if everything was o.k. :) I have some more records requests to get out, but things are moving along. The records request did work with Yolo county, and I'm sure others will follow suit shortly. (Sorry, but had to update.)

----------------------------------------------------------

First, the e-mails I sent after losing posting privileges:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Earlg, Elad and Skinner,


I am writing with regards to my loss of posting privileges, and must express my deep concern for what has just happened. The more the reality of this sets in, the more upset I am that this action has been taken. I am very eager to discuss this decision with an administrator as soon as possible, as I believe I am a productive member of the community you all so graciously host, and feel greatly wronged by losing my posting privileges in this manner. The short list of rules are as follows:


  1. This is a message board for Democrats and other progressives.


  2. Treat people with respect. Don't be rude or bigoted. Discuss the message, not the messenger.

  3. Don't post entire articles. Instead, post short excerpts (not exceeding 4 paragraphs) with links.

  4. Respect the wishes of the moderators and administrators.




I feel that my behavior on this board has been nothing if not the epitome of these values. The message rules also state, "Follow the 'Short Version' of the rules listed above and you will never have any trouble on this message board." I do acknowledge the right to ban anyone at anytime for any reason, but I do suggest that these reasons are subject to the other claims made throughout the site with regards to the operation of the DU forums. The "reasons" for banning someone should be consistent with the sale-point that this is a "big tent" message board. After all, this is why people fund this site. Even I was eagerly awaiting my next college financial aid check to come in January so that I may afford to contribute financial support to such a worthy and inviting effort. I also, in case it had been overlooked, offered to volunteer my time to help moderate the boards in an effort to help support this "big tent" environment.


Just prior to this loss of privilege, I had spent several days only checking in because I have been under major weight of homework obligations; finals and a senior thesis. The only posts I made immediately prior to the loss of

privilege action was to:


a) inform Skinner via PM of my personal knowledge of both  (former members Bozos for Bush and Jamboi) offering any information I could that would help clear up a potential misunderstanding. I had recent phone conversations with both of these guys, and feel strongly that had I received their messages earlier this misunderstanding may not have erupted. I felt that I should say something.


b) posting minor comments in a thread that was primarily asking about how to keep in touch with Wayne Madsen, and was subsequently an arena for personal attacks and speculation on the character of others. These comments were aimed at:




  1. Answer the only germane question posed in the thread: how to reach Wayne Madsen, and or his recent conduit to DU, Jamboi.

  2. Defusing the source of the personal conflict and misunderstanding.

  3. Placing the pleasant and humane aspects of said individuals into the conversation. This included praise and appreciation for moderators, their functions, and for the humans behind the screen names being speculated upon.

  4. Discourage openly the continued posting in this thread for reasons of speculating or assassinating the characters of others.

  5. Remind members that our moderators and administrators make consistently decisions that are rational, thoughtful and consistent with generosity to the human element in us all.




c) posted an alert to the moderators recommending the thread be locked for obvious reasons.


These actions are 100% consistent with the values advanced in the "short list" of rules, and if I may say so, are very representative of these ideals. My efforts served to reorient the discussion on the topical subject matter and less so on the human beings involved. My comments regarding others were very uplifting and supportive, respectful and considerate. They were brief, supportive, and the only ones present prior to Skinners that made any serious attempt to reorient conversation back to something more positive. From my perspective, I was helping.


The rules, and comments I have seen in related threads regarding Bev Harris' being banned (which I understand more and more each day) that people are not banned for one incident, but are banned on the basis of willful, repeated behavior. Here I will note that I have never once received a warning from a moderator or administrator, nor have I committed any "willful" violation of the rules. I am very consistent in my attempt to leave and receive thoughtful commentary on the issues most dear to the democratic party, and those who share interest in similar outcomes and efforts. I believe strongly that had I offended the consciousness of any of the moderating or administrative staff, that they should have at least made an effort to contact me to resolve the issue prior to any loss of privileges.


I have asked the one person who has already learned of my loss of privilege not to comment on it at all on the web at this point. I am wondering if perhaps the person or people who made this decision were just angry with the Jamboi and Bozos issue and accidentally took it out on me, or overlooked the fact my actions, if in fact in violation, were completely unintentional and could be resolved with the most minor of communicative efforts.


I have thoroughly benefited from my involvement in this community, and it is with mixed feeling I question this decision. I have great appreciation for what I have found in this site, and will continue to benefit from being able to read the posts of others, but will sorely miss the ability to engage other like-minded folk in active discussion and coordinated actions. I have been a part of DU for roughly a month now. It has become a significant part of my life, and even post election 2004, I would anticipate it still being as much so. This site serves to keep people actively engaged in the issues that effect them most, and for that, this for profit site is doing an incredible public service. Please restore my privileges so I do not have to participate from the sidelines. I do not believe I deserved such swift, harsh and removed action by your staff, and more importantly, I do not believe the action is consistent with the purposes for which Democratic Underground is funded by its members; DU gains member support under the guise that his is a "big tent" discussion environment, not one in which members are exiled from the community so quickly and heartlessly.


I feel I am a valuable contributor to the site. My background includes a few years editing and writing news for KFWB news in Los Angeles, during which time I occasionally filed reports with CNN, AP and other CBS/Infinity affiliated stations. My major focus of study is Public Administration, and I am currently in the process of applying to law school. I have received eight separate government commendations for work I have done with a local community college, where I have exposed (using our State's sunshine laws) non-compliant practices that total damages in the millions of dollars. I have spent time in Sacramento lobbying on behalf of higher education concerns. Needless to say, my background is one that is very consistent with a focus on qualified political discourse from a leftist perspective.


I look forward to your response.


Very truly yours,


(geo)

----- Original Message -----

From: (geo)

To: mail@democraticunderground.com

Cc: skinner@democraticunderground.com

Sent: Friday, December 17, 2004 10:41 AM

Subject: Posting Privileges


Hi all,


I just realized my posting privileges have been revoked. What happened? I have read the message board rules, and know that you guys only ban people for patterns of behavior that are disruptive. I feel my posts are very kind and thoughtful. I should also note that prior to finding myself unable to login, I have never been warned or told of any behavior that I displayed

that would lead to this.


My login is Geo. I even recently applied to be a moderator. I love the DU community, and do not wish to be cast out.


My posts have been very light over the last few days. I have checked back frequently for breaking news and analysis, but have tried to keep posting to a minimum so I can focus on finals/senior thesis. The only thing I have done differently in the last 24 hours is send one PM to Skinner regarding the Jamboi/Bozos drama, and post an alert about a thread I thought was getting out of hand (to which Skinner seemed to agree... he locked it down).


Obviously he is upset with Jamboi and Bozos, and I feel ban may be because I was caught in the crossfire. Just because I have spoken to them over the phone does not make me a bad apple among the DU barrel.


I am in the middle of a project with other DU members to audit California's election returns, and literally less than three days away from being able to make that my full time committment. My inbox has messages that need to be returned, and folks (including myself) have invested time in this. I would really like to continue the effort, and the DU forum has been a great help in bringing people together for such purposes.


If I have in fact done anything at all to violate a DU rule, I deeply apologize and can assure you that no rule violation would be repeated if I were at all cognicent of it happening. I have a lot of respect and appreciation for the work DU administrators and moderators have done to keep up this growing community, and would not want to convey any message to the contrary, be it expressed or implied.


Warmly,


(geo)

----------------------------------------------------------

Next, what was written to Skinner via PM just before I was tombstoned:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi Skinner,


I came home today with four phone calls from Jamboi and a missed call from Bozos for Bush, both now former members. As possibly one of the few DU members that have spoken with both of these members via telephone, I just wanted to make available to the moderating team the background I have in case it helps settle any disputes or could help influence a decision to re-assimilate these folks back into the DU community.


I am still a relatively new member to DU, so please accept my apology if I am at all out of line for butting in. I like both these guys, absolutely love DU, and really have a deep appreciation for what it must be like to keep the peace in such an environment. I hope anything I say here is representative as such. :)


======================

Short version: Both nice guys. Spoke with both over the phone prior to all this; at length. All Californians. Very well intentioned folks. John may need coaching on being tactful. (JamBoi) may post alot, but is a hella nice. Miss them both. Hope personal statement will help clear up potential misunderstandings. :)

=
=======================


Long version: I met (Bozos) through DU. (Bozos) is a nice guy, but has a short fuse when it come to folks playing games. I posted at BBV before finding DU (bless you all) and being still relatively new to even BBV, I was very patient and understanding with a poster named Auditors, who was not very good at working and playing well with others. As a matter of fact, his/her posts eventually appeared to be brazen and deliberate attempts to mess with folks. I came to DU more often to get away from it, and then noticed the trend here, with the same wording, illogical fact finding missions, and inconsiderate responses. I met (Bozos) when addressing the pattern, and in learning he is down the freeway from me, we have kept in touch somewhat.


There is a tactful way to handle disruptive situations. I'm not sure (Bozos) exercised this level of patience and tact. This may be why a nice and well intentioned guy like (Bozos) isn't able to use the service at this point in time. Over the phone, we laughed as he accused me of being too patient and nice with these folks. I have a feeling he gets it now, and may take more seriously the rules related to personal attacks and "calling people out."


As for (JamBoi) I have read and was very appreciative of his many posts. While some venture a little further into the land of tin-foil headware than I would have, I found many to be quite useful. (JamBoi) and I spoke at length regarding DU related issues, especially Mr. Madsen's articles, my personal concern for journalistic accuracy, and the somewhat related project of giving at least a surface audit to California's election results. I too had exchanged a couple of e-mails with Mr. Madsen, and had some reservations about starting a large audit project based on inaccurate or unfounded statements. We naturally came to the conclusion that an audit could never really hurt as long as we kept people from over-investing (and burning out). We also spoke about (JamBoi's) involvement with MoveOn.org, which is what brought him to be more active in these sorts of issues. We both recognized the near insomnia the election had caused in us.


Both these guys are dedicated souls based on my experience with them, on DU and off. (Bozos) may be in need of some friendly coaching on being tactful to even the most "obvious" disruptor, and perhaps (JamBoi) just posts too much. I will say this though: they are genuine, faults and all. Even if they ended up causing some headache, I know it is not at all because they are not respectful of the issues our community cares most deeply about; if anything they are too passionate. :)


I have seen amazing consistency in the reasoning and thoughtfulness behind DU moderator decisions and have only the utmost appreciation for the balance maintained on this site. Personally, I would love to see both of these very nice, well intentioned fellas make it back to this little community we have here. It would be nice to see their passion for discussion shaped and molded
in a manner consistent with DU rules. I hope my sharing of the personal contact I have had with these members makes it easier to see that they are
on our side, even when slightly misdirected. :) :)


If you've made it this far, thanks very much for reading. :) At least I mentioned it was the long version!! lol


Warmly,


(geo)

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Friday, December 17, 2004

JamBoi: Don't wanna be a "disrupter" ! No Way, no How!

This article was originally posted at jamboi.mydd.com on Fri Dec 17th, 2004


JamBoi: Don't wanna be a "disrupter" ! No Way, no How!
by JamBoi

JamBoi-in-Exile, Day1

Originally from a letter to Antifascist, but edited to make more sense (hopefully) :-) :


I read the response from Skinner in the DU Admin Forum and reading between all the lines it seems like he thinks I was advocating people leaving the Democratic party. This is not the case, though maybe my choice of words here and there should have been more careful. I wrote and promoted a thread that advocated e-mailing the DNC to stand up and fight for our values re: election fraud. I think its laughable that the DNC sends out a $$ raising letter entitled "We're fighting for your values" when they are sitting on the sidelines on the election fraud issue. In that thread I explicitly said I do not want to hurt the DNC or anyone else, just let them know what our values are. Perhaps unfortunately I used the word "crush" to mean send large volumes of e-mail to let them know what our values truly are. I can see now how the word "crush" could be ministerpreted and was not a good choice of words. I would take that back and re-frame my point if I had the chance.


I think it was in that same thread that I pointed out that while I'm a Green I love John Kerry and also that if the Democratic party would simply stand up and fight for people (starting with fighting for the investigation of election fraud) I was persuadable and could be won over to reregistering as a Democrat. I used to be a Democrat and even participated in caucus meetings. I frequently vote for Democrats. The rules on DU specifically say you don't need to be a Democrat to participate, though so I don't think that the fact tha for now I'm registered as a Green should be a problem.


Moreover, obviously I make no bones about the fact I'm a Green and am supportive of my fellow Greens and similarly minded progressives. But I have certainly not gone on any kind of crusade to win over folks to the Green party, nor would I ever presume to on a non-Green medium. The reason I prominently display the fact that I'm a Green is because I think that is only honest, and I would prefer dealing with people that similarly put their cards on the table in this way so I can know where they are coming from.


I have been extremely circumspect and posting very little about the fact that Greens are leading the way in this election fraud issue and that many progressives are likely to shift to the Green party due to the fact the Greens are out front and doing the yoeman's work while the Democratic Party is holding its cards very close to its chest. I think its blatantly obvious to everyone, so I don't choose to make much of a point of it at DU. I'm not in favor of this group vs that groupism. I think as the greetings to DU say that we are all progressives and we don't help anything by picking on one another.


On my signature I have a Green logo, to self identify, but if you actually look at it and hit the link you'll see that I link to what I termed "Recount Central". http://www.votecobb.org. Why? Because if you go and look there you'll find that it is exactly that-- better than most any other site it has the latest on the recount. I think it should be evident to everyone that the election fraud/recount/audit the vote is my #1 issue. Notice that I changed my avatar from a recycling symbol to the http://RedHandsMovement.com symbol. Why? For the same reason. Election fraud is a non-partisan issue in my book, and I am simply trying to put out there that is my #1 issue and that I hope others will care about whether we have free and fair elections in the US also.


Is any of this "disruptive" activity? Gee you know, I really, really, really didn't intend it to be. I totally appreciate DU and would never want to harm it. Although I would hope that as liberal-minded people we can allow others to have different points of view without feeling the need to snuff out their voices, if I've gone too far in how I've expressed myself I'll be absolutely happy to alter my behavior to conform to the community standards at DU. Progression of society through democratic ideals is my primary goal and I believe in putting aside things that hold us back, so if my behavior is holding progress back I want to change my behavior.


So I've pretty much gotten down on my knees in public and private e-mails and begged to Skinner that I be shown where I can alter my behavior to fit within his community guidelines and be allowed to be a part of the community again. The last thing I want to do is be a "disrupter" at DU. I hope that he will give me a second chance to set things right and again be a happy DU member.


Thanks Anti-fascist,


JamBoi

Press Release: JNC Forms New Progressive News Network (humor)

This article was originally posted at jamboi.mydd.com on Fri Dec 17th, 2004


Press Release: JNC Forms new Progressive News Network (humor)
by JamBoi

(self-deprecating humor)

Dateline: 12/17/04, Silicon Valley

Seeing the obvious need for a truly progressive mainstream media network, JamBoi has taken it upon himself to become the all-new 24/7 JamBoi News Channel (JNC)! Nonstop with no coffee breaks he will single-handedly save the planet from election fraud and O'lielly's falafel's. Our motto "All JamBoi, all the time, 24/7 JamBoi. The most sleep-deprived source of news from and to the sleep deprived. "Sleepy and and Unbalanced" Our answer to Faux "news"." :-) Hey, they have Faux, we have JamBoi!

Pass the toothpicks somebody, my eyes are closing. If somebody doesn't get on this with me, I'll need some extra-strength toothpicks! Its hard work,but somebody's got to do it. Hard work, evenings, weekends, ordering out... hard.. killin' me. (goes unconscious)

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Thursday, December 16, 2004

A Message from JamBoi-in-Exile

First published at jamboi.mydd.com on Thurs. Dec. 16th 2004

by JamBoi

Hey y'all,

Some incredibly bizarre turn of events today.

First thing I check my Inbox at DU am told that a fellow compatriot from DU has published a full out flame against me on his blog. I've been trying all day to figure out how to reach him and talk it through without avail. And THEN my login is disabled at DU. I've put in calls and e-mail to the leadership at DU to try to sort it all out. Aye Carumba! Well at least I can say I'm in good company with our President-in-exile Gore and President-elect-in-exile Kerry. :-)

To answer some questions I see posted at DU about me:

No, I'm not Madsen. Thank God, I think he must be dodging bullets left and right about now. I've got enough trouble of my own today. Secondly yes its true that I've been incredibly prolific on DU although probably at least 75% of the "posts" are just "ata boy" type encouraging comments. Yeah my fingers are fast, although nothing like some folks. Thirdly its true I've been on DU just intensely, day and night (with breaks for sleep ;-) ) since I discovered the wonderful world of DU and been expending every ounce of energy to try to participate in this '04 Election Fraud investigation campaign. So I should be penalized because I'm trying to make a difference??? Anyway I'm sure we'll get it straightened out and Y'all at DU and the whole DU community just rock so hard!

JamBoi

Edited to add:
PS:

* Reading that other blog it almost sounded like I'm vs BH. Not so I'm nuetral on the BH vs. DU issues, though I support the Election Fraud 04 investigation cause and greatly respect anyone who has contributed to the effort. Aside from personality conflicts I think BH has contributed hugely to our cause and hope that BH vs KO and BH vs DU intrigue will be resolved and we can all push together against election fraud.

* I know very little about LL. At a rally the other day one of his adherents approached me and gave me an LL rag, and I sat down and read it. Interesting. Crazy in places. Had some good points. Definitely inflated ego. I'm no LL fan.

* I've never even tried an illegal drug, thank you very much. Don't intend to start now. I'd appreciate it if people would be more responsible in their public postings.

* As I said, yes I've been very wound up about trying to make a difference in resolving what I've come to understand to be what I'll call SloMoCoup II. I'm just one person, but I've been very intense on this and expending every ounce of energy trying to do what I can. I'm not sure why my activity patterns should be such a source of speculation, and if I'm accomplishing a lot for the cause well then I'd think others would cheer me on instead of throwing bricks. No good deed shall go unpunished. :-)

* As I said above, I think you guys, including BfB (as mistaken as I think he currently is about me) all rock soooo hard. DU rocks!

Note to everyone, most especially IAR: No not at all, you haven't offended me. Even Skinner and BfB haven't offended me, I just want to be back in communion with you all! Love ya! SZH: Its true that I really flamed FD/BFN when he first came on. I looked into his work further and wrote several apology letters to him, that also continue to question the accuracy of a number of points re: FD/BFN's reporting on Madsen. I'm still trying to get a dialog going with him on it.

Open letter to Skinner,

Dear Skinner,

As I wrote in the letter to you and the other admins earlier today I really want to know what I have done to earn the title of "disrupter" that you have applied to me. I want to know about and change any behavior that you object to immediately. I want to be part of the fantastic community you have created and contribute postively. I sincerely and humbly ask you to have mercy on me and give me the benefit of the knowledge of what I have done wrong, and allow me back into your community. I totally respect the wonderful work you have done there and support DU in every way. Please allow me to be rehabilitated into your DU community.

Sincerely.

JamBoi

PS: I feel it was wrong of you to also tombstone Not_Without_A_Fight, for whatever sins I may have committed. She doesn't deserve that and I don't see anything that she did to be a "disrupter."

JBIE &/or another TombStoned Friend on

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

JamBoi-In-Exile arrives at at Elba :-)