“We can’t fear the right outing us,” Ari Rabin-Havt spokesman for Media Matters said, when I first asked him from the audience for his thoughts on the now defunct progressive listserv once known as journolist. Mr.Rabin-Havt also told the audience he was a member of the 400 participant listserv himself. Mr. Rabin-Havt thought the journolist issue, though, was more of a Washington based non-story.
A Net Roots Nation conference panel that convened at the Rio hotel in Las Vegas on Thursday titled “Responding to Attacks on Community Organizers and Progressive Groups” held a heavy emphasis on the liberal response to the recent story involving former USDA official Shirley Sherrod who was ousted from her position following the release of a video clip of her making questionable remarks. More video of the original clip was released to reveal further context of Ms. Sherrod’s remarks.
Other topics discussed included: the ACORN videos, Fox News Channel, Glenn Beck, Andrew Breitbart, and the recent journolist story. When asked by an audience member why other news executives don’t challenge Fox, Mr. Rabin-Havt responded:
“A lot of people in the executive suites are scared of Fox because News Corp is a financial power house not only in the news business but in the entertainment field and the movie field,” he said.
Later in the evening, Ed Schultz charged that the White House was scared of Fox News (H/T C. Bellantoni at TPM):
“They must have a war room at the White House. I think they’ve got a sissy room too,” Schultz said. “I didn’t vote for that.”
He also complained that Obama hasn’t gone on his show or sat recently for interviews with Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow, adding that during the campaign, “I busted my ass for Obama.” Schultz said that instead of going on The Ed Show, Obama went on Bret Baier’s show on Fox, “in my time slot. What’s that all about?”
**Update with more description of Rabin-Havt quote. 6/23 6:10 PM PST
**Update with more description of a question from an audience member 6/24