Tuesday, July 1, 2014

NOM continues its campaign of deceit to raise money

National Organization for Marriage
Today National Organization for Marriage is glorifying a letter to the editor of a small paper in Everett, WA. NOM creates a flase narrative which is repeated by an incurious member of the general public. NOM then cites what is published as some sort of validation. It is circular misinformation. I'll get back to the letter but first some background.

The holier-than-thou crowd at NOM has a penchant for dishonesty. Frankly, when it comes to prevarication, we are no match for NOM. Equality activists are just not terribly competent at spreading falsehoods. Perhaps that is one of the reasons that we are winning the marriage contest. We can assert the facts without the obvious demagoguery.

You wouldn't know it from their propaganda but NOM lost its suit against the IRS in summary judgment. On June 3, a Reagan-nominated federal judge concluded that the IRS made an inadvertent clerical error, accidentally sending someone NOM's confidential donor list for 2008. There was no intent and the error did not constitute gross negligence. NOM was entitled to reasonable damages. Rather than submitting the matter to trial, both sides settled with NOM receiving $50,000. NOM will receive some more money for reasonable attorneys' fees. They will file a petition for those fees by July 25. Then we probably get to do this all over again.

There was some evidence at trial (before summary judgment) that NOM had raised more than $50,000 off of this issue. Of course there is no way to know if those people might have donated anyway. Apparently NOM thinks that they have a money-maker in the IRS so they are milking it for all that it is worth. Having lost to marriage equality, NOM's business is now staying in business by raising money — which will be used to raise more money after overhead and salaries. They are certainly not accomplishing anything and at a time of losing impact, NOM's overhead has actually increased due to the fact that they are running the organization out of both Washington, DC and Philadelphia. In other words, they now have two headquarters. But I digress.

In the time since they announced their settlement on June 23, NOM has claimed victory; “Oh, and by the way, please send us some more money.” Their campaign of misinformation has apparently worked given the coverage that they have received in right-of-center media. The Washington Examiner, for example, wrote that the confidential donor list was obtained through a secret conduit. That is not at all true.

A clerk at the IRS named Wendy Peters mailed Andrew Meisel NOM's tax return for 2008 (forgetting to redact the donors' names). Meisel referred to a “conduit” in an online chat with someone. Given the indisputable facts, Meisel was referring to a process, rather than a person. He claimed that he was a member of the media which expedited the handling of the request. There is no evidence whatsoever that Meisel expected to receive anything other than the form 990 (non-profit tax return). Ms. Peters has no connections, whatsoever, to either Meisel or the Human Rights Campaign (which provided the information to the Huffington Post).

Getting back to that letter to the editor which NOM falsely characterizes as an Op-Ed, it is titled “IRS: Agency totally lawless, partisan.” Unsurprisingly, the title of NOM's blog post is “IRS is lawless, partisan.” The meandering letter concludes with; “We need a special prosecutor or two to investigate the IRS.”

A clerical error is not lawlessness nor is it partisan. Exactly what is it that this individual thinks we should prosecute? A federal judge has already ruled that there was no intent, just ineptitude. Meisel was excused from further testimony citing his Fifth Amendment rights. The reality is that he wanted to stop paying mounting legal fees. There was no crime here.

NOM will persist for as long as they are raising money off of this issue. Gullible people and complicit media are recycling the bullshit yet the odor remains the same. Actually, it worsens with age.

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