Who funds Cindy Sheehan?
I was mentioning how the financial backers of Cindy are getting their money's worth, but I didn't know who they were. I suspected they were lefty organizations still bitter about Bush's win last November with a majority, and I was right. The camp at Crawford is full of Cindy Sheehan supporters, people from all walks of life, but off to the side are a small group of professionals skilled in politics and public relations who are marketing Cindy Sheehan's message. Cindy Sheehan kneels before a cross with her son's name on it, touches his picture, wipes her tears. It's an outpouring of emotion that is part of a scheduled news event organized daily for the television, radio and print reporters who crowd in to capture a mother's grief. A scheduled outpouring of emotion. Say that a couple of times in your heads and tell me how geniuine it sounds. Organizers are set up in a house trailer. Their meetings closed to reporters. Leading the group is Fenton Communications employee, Michele Mulkey, based in San Francisco. Fenton specializes in public relations for liberal non-profits. Their bills are being paid for by True Majority, a non-profit set up by Ben Cohen -- of Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream fame. Ben Cohen, True Majority: "People are willing to listen to her and we want to do as much as we can to make her voice heard." Cohen's group has teamed up with Berkeley based MoveOn.org, an anti-Bush group co-founded by Joan Blades. [...] Current Democratic National Party Chair Howard Dean's organization Democracy for America is also involved, as is the more radical anti-war group Code Pink organized by San Francisco's Medea Benjamin. Money donated through these groups and others is helping to pay for Gold Star families whose children have been killed in Iraq to attend anti-Bush protests. Code Pink, in case you don't know, was founded by a group of Marxists and Castro supporters and have ties to the communist Workers World Party, which lionizes Joseph Stalin, Slobodan Milocevic, and Kim Jong Il. Lovely People. Hmm, I can almost hear you screaming "But this is a geniuine effort, it's from the heart. Even ask the participating families". Oh really? Ok! There is real reluctance to talk about who's paying, and the P.R. machine that's promoting Cindy Sheehan, but not everyone here is completely comfortable with it. Gold Star mother Karen Meredith came here from Mountain View. Her son Ken Ballard died last year. Karen Meredith, Gold Star mother: "Sometimes things don't feel quite right to me. They don't feel wrong, but maybe that's how they do it in the marketing business." ABC7's Mark Matthews: "You feel you're part of a marketing business?" Karen Meredith: "Possibly. Yeah I think so." Gee, I wonder what would give her that crazy Idea!