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Edwards Provides Lesson in E-Campaigning 101

When you visit the John Edwards for President Web site, you're invited to send a sympathy note to the Edwardses. And tens of thousands of well wishers have done so since that heart-wrenching news conference two weeks ago at which Elizabeth Edwards courageously discussed her incurable cancer.

What those well wishers get in return -- e-mail messages soliciting contributions to Edwards's campaign.

Visitors to the Edwards site who choose to "send a note to Elizabeth and John" are first taken to a heartfelt letter from the candidate that was written the day after he learned that his wife's cancer had returned. Edwards thanks readers for their "prayers and wishes," vows that he and Elizabeth will "keep a positive attitude always look for the silver lining" and declares that "our campaign goes on and it goes on strongly."

Anyone who then chooses to send a note of sympathy to the Edwardses -- and, thus, provide his or her e-mail address -- automatically becomes part of the Edwards campaign's online e-mail database, a list that is crucial to any campaign's ability to raise vast amounts of money over the Internet.

If you sent a note to the Edwardses before the critical March 31 end-of-the-quarter fundraising deadline, you would have received frantic e-mail solicitations from the campaign, such as the one on March 28 from Edwards campaign manager David Bonior titled, "96 hours to show substance works." The solicitation asked for "$25, $50 or any amount you can afford to give."

"John, Elizabeth and you have created something incredible together. Our grassroots campaign for change is raising the bar for what leadership means in America -- and it's strong enough to win," Bonior wrote. (Scroll down to the bottom of this post to read the Bonior e-mail.)

And you would have received Monday's announcement that the campaign had exceeded its online fundraising goal, raking in more than $3.3 million over the Internet.

While Edwards has enjoyed a big surge in donations since he and his wife disclosed the return of her cancer, the campaign has not mentioned the "C" word in any of its fundraising solicitations. In fact, an e-mail sent to supporters on March 22, the day of their famous news conference, omitted the usual link to contribute money.

Jonathan Prince, Edwards's deputy campaign manager, acknowledged that the campaign adds the e-mail addresses of Elizabeth Edwards's well wishers to its e-mail fundraising list. Giving a one-line explanation, he said, "Nobody gets an e-mail from us without explicitly agreeing to receive e-mails."

Ari Rabin-Havt, an Internet strategist for Sen. John Kerry's (D-Mass.) 2004 presidential campaign, said it's common for campaigns to use devices such as petitions to spur growth in their e-mail lists. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, for example, has a petition on her Web site calling for the ouster of Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez.

Kerry came under fire in '04 for using e-mail addresses culled through his online petition calling for the firing of then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to raise money for his campaign.

"The reason people do these petitions is for important advocacy and because they grow their e-mail lists," Rabin-Havt said. "And when you grow your e-mail list, you raise more money."

But petitions are one thing, said some Democratic critics of Edwards's fundraising practices. Cancer is another.

One Democratic operative, citing comments made by Edwards, charged, "There's a certain inconsistency to, on the one hand, going out of his way to say 'don't vote for us because of this tragedy,' but then using it to solicit funds."

Another Democrat, who asked to remain anonymous because of the issue's sensitivity, said while it's understandable that campaigns use e-mail addresses they acquire through their Web sites for fundraising purposes, "there should have been an exception in this case."

But Rabin-Havt, who is not working on a presidential campaign this cycle, argued that any other candidate in Edwards's position would do the same thing. "If he didn't use these e-mail addresses, it would be poor online strategy."

Mary Boyle, a spokeswoman for the campaign finance watchdog group Common Cause, said of the Edwards campaign's online fundraising practices: "While it may not sit well with some people, it points to the reality of running a campaign in this environment that's all about fundraising."

An e-mail sent out by the Edwards campaign last week:

From: David Bonior, Edwards for President
Sent: Wed Mar 28 14:10:01 2007
Subject: 96 hrs to show substance works

Critical Deadline in Just 96 Hours. Click to Contribute

Dear Mary Ann,

I was in Congress for 26 years and I've worked on a lot of campaigns, but I've never been so proud to be a part of one as I am right now. Because John, Elizabeth and you have created something incredible together. Our grassroots campaign for change is raising the bar for what leadership means in America-and it's strong enough to win.

As you probably know, this Saturday at midnight marks the first major fundraising deadline of this campaign-which means we have less than 96 hours to show that our campaign has the support and momentum we need to put our agenda in front of voters nationwide. This first test couldn't be more important.

If you've been waiting to plunk down your $50 until a truly critical moment-that moment has arrived. Your contribution of $25, $50 or any amount you can afford to give today will send a loud message that the American people are ready for change:

http://johnedwards.com/r/8884/917772/

When I say "raising the bar for what leadership means" I'm not just blowing smoke. To fundamentally change the country, we've got to go where ordinary campaigns fear to tread. That means putting forward real, bold plans for the future. It means putting our hands and our voices to work right now in local communities and on the national stage. All this clarity means real accountability, which you don't see much of in American politics. But if we're serious about change, it's the only way to go.

Here's how we've done it so far:

* Proposing transformational change for America and the world: John's plan for universal health care "set the standard for all the candidates with a specific proposal" (as New York Times columnist Paul Krugman put it). He's set out a plan to end the war in Iraq-starting now. He's offered a bold agenda for tackling extreme poverty at home and around the world. And last week, John announced a cutting-edge plan to halt global warming and create a new energy economy.

* Raising our voice on the issues today: We aren't waiting until 2009 to push for the big changes we know our country needs. Over 130,000 of us signed up to oppose Bush's escalation and demand an end to the war in Iraq. We raised our voices against the outrage of inadequate health care for our service members and veterans. And we called on Congress to vote to raise the minimum wage-and they did.

* Changing America right here and now: Through One Corps, thousands of us have gotten together to make our communities more energy efficient, volunteer in hospitals, serve those in need and gather grassroots support for the big goals we care about. And tonight, thousands of us will join in the first National John Edwards House Party Day yo spread the word and grow our team.

You see why I'm so proud? In all my years in public life I've heard a lot of different people talk about change. But I've never seen someone at the national level walk the walk like John Edwards. That's why I know this campaign can really transform America-it's already begun.

But to keep our momentum going, we've got to have a strong showing for this Saturday's fundraising deadline. The press and the pundits will look at our fundraising numbers at the end of this week and ask: "Does the John Edwards campaign have what it takes to go the distance?"

You and I know the answer to that. This week, let's prove it to the world. Please chip in $50, $100, $25 or whatever you can afford to help us across the finish line today:

http://johnedwards.com/r/8886/917772/

Thank you for taking action,

David Bonior
Campaign Manager
John Edwards for President

By Mary Ann Akers  |  April 4, 2007; 5:30 AM ET
 
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Comments

With Hillary its Whitewater and Bill's assorted scandals; with OBama its thin experience and now tragically for John Edwards it is "how's the wife?" Insensitive, callous, cruel, the question has all those characteristics, but yes, it is also realistic. The only developments that could slow the cascading curiosity about Elizabeth Edward's health is reassuring words from her specialist that the cancer is being controlled, confined, regulated, even receding, otherwise her condition remains the lingering reservation on Edwards' candidacy. Soon Edwards must challenge the fitness of Hilary Clinton's candidacy. She has the most impressive credentials, that is self evident. She has the most campaign money. But once she secures the Democratic Nomination can she win the General Election? Edwards must point out that the Republicans will wage a similar smear campaign to the one they mounted against John Kerry, only this will be more intense. After the last six years would the electorate be scatterbrained enough to elect a Republican President? They did last time when there was solid evidence of an inept administration. In 08 of course, the electorate may well decide their vote on major issues, rather than birth control, or stem cell research, with the grim reality of Iraq and Global Warming staring them in the face. But in the Democratic Primaries the task of all competing candidates will be to cast doubt on Senator Clinton's electability. Thus far, they have been unable to do so, as influential democrat after influential democrat gives her their endorsement.

Posted by: david halliday | April 4, 2007 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Looks like EE has done just that - she announced this week that her cancer has two of the three hormone receptors, and thus can be controlled and treated with hormone therapy. Great news for that family, and for all of us who wish them well.

Posted by: Kate | April 4, 2007 9:20 AM | Report abuse

I met Elizabeth and Jon Edwards in Orlando during the last campaign. They had a grassroots news conference on my neighbors porch and I was able to join them. Elizabeth did not have cancer at that time. The impression she made on me that day, as well as John, was the same honest, patriotic, caring, sincere, and very REAL PEOPLE impression. I did not feel a distance between us. I felt like I knew them. Maybe it was the realness that took me back. So,the neighborhood porch, used as a TV set, was a perfectly honest choice for representing their campaign. They are people who WOULD come and talk to their neighbors and share conversation whether it was political or not.

I believe this is why their new campaign is getting the public reaction that I just described. One of: truth, transparent humanism, believing in their platform for more than just political persuasion but even more so, a platform for the people and the country. THEY have the determination to really make a change in America.They are like caring neighbors. I felt this exuded from them.

This isn't a new episode of the Edwards campaign. It is a rerun of the same people, but with a stronger desire to change America because we need it NOW. John has a deep and philosophical partner beside him. The same one I met on the porch and I felt like I had known her for a long time.

Annetta Igou
Orlando, Florida

Posted by: annetta igou | April 4, 2007 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Isn't that called phishing?

Bait people on the internet to visit your website for one reason only to hit them up for unsolicited monetary purposes afterwards?

Posted by: TFG | April 4, 2007 11:41 AM | Report abuse

You really seem to have it in for John Edwards. This is one in a series of made up 'scandals' that you have 'reported'. We've seen putting leaks from the RNC directly into the WP before - looks like you are another practioner.

Posted by: annb | April 4, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse

It's very simple. Mr. Edwards is a politician. Politicans are the "slime" of our country...what more would you expect.

Posted by: getingo | April 4, 2007 11:49 AM | Report abuse

The Edwards Campaign seems to be deliberately exploiting the candidate's wife's health problems for political benefit.

Ghoulish.

Posted by: Nick Hazard | April 4, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I was one of those who sent an email of good wishes. I am not a supporter of Edwards and I explained as much. The only response has been solicitation for donations to Edwards' campaign, no other acknowledgment whatsoever, not even a form "thank you". I certainly didn't expect any acknowledgment, but I could do without the spam.

I also sent good wishes to Tony Snow via the White House site. I haven't received acknowledgment for that, either, but at least I haven't been getting spammed by the RNC.

Posted by: B Severance | April 4, 2007 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Yep, just as I thought. This scoop was leaked to you and to Drudge. Nice work Mary Ann.

Posted by: annb | April 4, 2007 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Edwards makes his living as a trial lawyer. He shakes companies down for his own gain by exploiting personal tragedy. Why would anyone be surprised that he is now exploiting his own tragedy? What is surprising is that anyone would want someone like him to run the country.

Posted by: rj | April 4, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse

You REALLY have to love how the libs drained the swamp and how one moronic poster here thinks the WORLD of Leftwards.

Typical libsheep.

Posted by: GunnyG | April 4, 2007 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Liberals, scum of the earth.

Posted by: TheMan | April 4, 2007 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Edwards has brought a new low to the word TACKY. On the other hand, he is a trail lawyer ... could we reasonably expect better?

Posted by: rcr | April 4, 2007 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Well, this was just leaked by Drudge, too - John McCain's melanoma has returned. So, we Republicans have our own Cancer guy to parade before the sobbing masses. Take That John Edwards!

Posted by: Indigo Red | April 4, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Shakesphere was right about lawyers.

"First we KILL all the lawyers!"

Posted by: Thompson 2008! | April 4, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

One must question the original choice of a full blown press conference, rather than a simple press release, to announce the return of Mrs. Edwards cancer. Obviously a news conference draws a bigger crowd, huge TV and radio exposure for days on end, and more ink. The immediate benefits were quite obvious with a huge influx of much needed cash for the ex-senator's presidential campaign. Now comes the announcement that, "gee, the cancer is not as bad as we first thought..."

Posted by: DennisH | April 4, 2007 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Edwards plays the leftist sheep like Charlie Daniels plays a fiddle!

Posted by: libh8ter | April 4, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I normally don't comment on people's blogs, and I feel like it's a waste of time sifting through all the filth people put on them.

I stumbled upon yours, and seeing the comments, makes me realize how just seeing a different perspective on a main stream source can have the ability to turn people loose because it's not what they're used to hearing.

Seeing this story just puts a perspective of what can really go on behind these campaigns. I feel for Mrs. Edwards, and I hope for the best. I'm more of a think for yourself person, and seeing this story just makes me realize in general how people can be led as sheep to believe anything or buy into something they didn't expect.

Both sides of the aisle have been tainted with the mud slinging, and back door tactics, and I hope that our country wakes up and tackles the real issues we face today. I think your presence on the Washington Post shows at least that different perspectives are somewhat respected, and those that accuse you of being a foot soldier for the RNC are people that just want to get fed what they want to hear. It's sad that in todays world where we get so much access to information, we are now all just as likely to be swayed by anyone and the "open minds" of people are still just as likely to lash out at someone with a difference of opinion.

Posted by: Mark | April 4, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

LOL. I just recently had a debate in Political debate chat room where I accused the Edwards team of using her cancer for politcal purposes. I was attacked by liberals who swore a democrat like Edwards wouldnt ever do that.
Thanks for making me right, Mr Edwards.

Posted by: Peter | April 4, 2007 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Funny that Red Nancy vows to drain the swamp and then ignores Frozen Money Jackson, her own employment of illegal aliens, Alcee Hastings past record, and now this. LOL! The Dhimmicrat Party is definately in top form, living Velcro-Fly Bubba's legacy daily.

Posted by: VRWC Member | April 4, 2007 12:39 PM | Report abuse

What a scumbag - byt he is a trual lawyer, so that is redundant!

Posted by: jonsey | April 4, 2007 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Both parties are a disgrace and would capitalize on the illness of a spouse. Unfortunately it took segregationist Governor Wallace to reveal the truth that "there's not a dime's worth of difference between" Republicans and Democrats. The Democrats willingly went along with the War in Iraq, suspension of Habeas Corpus, detaining protesters, banning books like "America Deceived' from Amazon, stealing private lands (Kelo decision), warrant-less wiretapping and refusing to investigate 9/11 properly. They are both guilty of treason.
Last link (before Google Books bends to gov't Will and drops the title):
http://www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/book_detail.asp?&isbn=0-595-38523-0

Posted by: Paul D | April 4, 2007 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget, if Bubba had left a decent legacy behind, Shrillary would be banging it like a drum. Liberals...bottom feeders at best.

Posted by: BigDaddy | April 4, 2007 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Y'all are learning what we in NC have known about John Edwards for years. I want to personaly apologize on behalf of all North Carolinians for being the state that put Edwards in the public eye. He scammed us when he ran for Senate as a centrist democrat. He didn't run for re election to the Senate in 2004 becaquse he knew he would lose. Wake up Iowa...you're being scammed too!

Posted by: GGGF | April 4, 2007 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Exploiting your wife's health to help raise campaign funds. Just when you thought it wasn't possible to reach a new low in politics. Mary Ann showed that at least one reporter can distinguish between wishing a family well personally and recognizing when that same family crosses the line politically and morally.

Usually a family member's health was no one else's business in politics. Edwards and his willing partner have now made personal tragedy into big business.

Typical trial lawyer. I am a GOPer, but would easily vote for Clinton and Obama over the aspiring "Exploiter in Chief."

Posted by: James | April 4, 2007 12:55 PM | Report abuse

For someone who made his fortune preying on people's (read: jury's) empathy this latest development in Cancergate should not come as a surprise.

The only surprising thing is that Edwards and his team of trained monkeys honestly believed that they would be able to pull it off in front of a national audience rather than the relative anonymity of a Carolina courtroom.

Oh well, he can ultimately retreat to his 30,000 sq ft bungalow and wile away the days.

30,000 sqft. !?!?!?! I wonder which of the two Americas that puts Edwards in?

Posted by: SugarTown | April 4, 2007 12:55 PM | Report abuse

When is Edwards going to invite failed ex-president Jimmy Carter to build homes on his secluded 200 acres for the masses in the "other" half of America.

What a stooge.

Posted by: libssuck | April 4, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

REAL people don't drag their kids around the country in a long-shot chance at the nomination. They are self-indulgent, shallow and hypocritical. A millionaire personal injury trial lawyer has as much chance of being President as a homeless bum.

Posted by: PAW | April 4, 2007 1:04 PM | Report abuse

My goodness! Look at all the haters this blog attracts. I wonder if Michelle Maulkin is getting jealous of Mary Ann. It looks like we have a catfight on our hands to see who will be the next Tokyo Rose.

Posted by: Sonofabastard | April 4, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Edwards is what makes trial lawyers so outragous. The media never calls him out for the millions he manipulated from the health care system that he claims to have mercy on. He sued doctor's by blaming them for children that were born with cerebral palsy, claiming that they contracted the disease because the doctor did not perform C-sectons. Never dead infants, always living children. He even claimed to channel the voice of one of the babies that he was representing in a trial. Now he claims to be for affordable health care for all? How about returning all of the money you drained from the system in the first place?
Edwards is a typical slimy trial lawyer who only sees manipulation and deceit as a way to conduct himself. While both party's are nearly identical right now, the former trial lawyer's in each of them are the ones who really stand out. Edwards is a hack who would use his tragedy in any situation that would bring him more money and power. That is all he knows!

Posted by: Lammyleap | April 4, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Look at the posts of the stupid liberals running screen and JUSTIFYING the actions of a scummy trial lawyer.

There ARE sheep in America Hillary.

Posted by: YEOW! | April 4, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: hey Ya'll | April 4, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Despicable behavior that confirms fears that ambulance-chasin' Edwards is using his wife's cancer for political gain.

Posted by: Filbert | April 4, 2007 1:20 PM | Report abuse

What a sack of crap. He's in the right party with the other surrender-loving corrupt weasels.

Posted by: Devil Dog | April 4, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

John, You can win with less campaign mmoney than Clinton because neighborhood folks know you are qualified and will be a better President than any other Democratic contestant.

Posted by: Bonnie McCarthy | April 4, 2007 1:46 PM | Report abuse

For democracy to work properly Americans need to address campaign finance reform. Public financing is the way to go. It's odd that the rightwing haters here today don't care that our politicians are bought and paid for by special interest groups. Here is John Edwards position on this critical issue.
`


The starting point is comprehensive campaign finance reform, not tinkering at the edges-comprehensive campaign finance reform. I have said before that I support public financing of campaigns. As long as politicians are trapped in a desperate money chase, as long as they must spend huge amounts of time and resources to raise the money to run for re-election, we will continue to see wealthy interests trying to buy their way into favor. We need to change the way business is done there, and we need to do it immediately if we want to get our government back.
JOHN EDWARDS


Posted by: Sonofabastard | April 4, 2007 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Edwards, man for the poor?

Yeah, he did a great job here in NC obliterating the OB/GYN industry making it HARDER for women to receive good health care. But who cares, HIS WIFE and DAUGHTERS get the finest health care money can buy, thanks to the $$ raked in from bogus lawsuits. Not to mention the fact that he SHELTERED that cash with his lawyerese.

Thanks for NOTHING Edwards.

JD in NC

Posted by: LMAO | April 4, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

This is the first blog I have read. My heavens, the vitriolic silliness of bloggers is immense. My rookie observations:
1. Absent to lite insight: I noticed very little to no analysis to support positions stated. I guess blogs are the perfect forum for insupportable ballast.
2. The hatred in the blogger's heart is agonizing: I guess that can be said of a lot of folks irrespective of political leanings, but suggesting murder and vomiting fantasies about a man's character without ever meeting him is frightening. I guess blogs are the perfect valve for hatred to spew anonymously.
3. Uneducated/stupidity/uninformed rules the day: Many decry trial lawyers and cite the wisdom of Shakespeare in the matter. The citation is instructive--please check the character who spoke the line and read the play. You will find you are coupling your fantasy with a madman. But I guess blogs are the perfect forum for flunkies to feel smart.

In any event, thanks for the sampling of the world of blogging (and apologies to those of you who do not follow the rules of blogging as I superficially see them).

Posted by: Where is the love | April 4, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Where is the love? You sound like a typical liberal. All-knowing. More likely, you know absolutely everything about nothing. Well, maybe a lot about the blind following the blind.

Posted by: libsrloser20002004 | April 4, 2007 2:18 PM | Report abuse

great points 'where is the love'.

blogging (and commenting on blogs) has really turned into a crap throwing contest among intellectually lazy ideologues. Instead of looking for the truth, they look to find evidence to prove their point and ignore that which brings their absolute into question. Generalizations of course, but valid for this blog to be sure.

Posted by: kenviro | April 4, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I sent an e-mail to John Edwards expressing sorrow concerning his wife's cancer. I have gotten numerous e-mails from his campaign. So what! I'm not a fan of his politics and my computer makes delete easy. Not earthshaking enough to blog it to death.

Posted by: Paul Davidson | April 4, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

It sucks that our union forces us to give to political clowns like this. He gives Democrats a bad name. Using his wife's cancer to get money!? What's next? Having a kid kidnapped to earn a mil or two? Yeech.

Posted by: Teamster | April 4, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Wouldn't it have been more appropriate to solicit donations for cancer research rather than for the campaign?

Posted by: Matt F | April 4, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Whereisthelove. Read a little more deeply and analyze. The message is that Edwards is a very polarizing figure. Many many people do not trust him, and do not believe him because of his words and actions as a trial lawywer, and his words and actions as a politician. Glowing testimonials about Edwards are lacking substance, and I would bet in most cases, are from members of Edwards E-centric campaign staff who cruise blogs to stump for him, and quash those who rightflly criticize him. Pay attention, there is a reason Edwards has so many detractors. Gomer goes to Washington can't happen again.

Posted by: GGGF | April 4, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

To say that the Edwards campaign took advantage of Elizabeth's illness for fundraising and political benefit is short-sighted to say the least. People that sent electronic get well cards to Elizabeth via the campaign website and received subsequent emails CHOSE to receive those emails. Thus they are not spam. Yes the emails contain requests for monetary support but they also contain tons of policy information. It is not an exploitation of people's concern but rather an overature to people who, because they saw genuine stark humanity in a political couple (probably for the first time in their lives), decided to consider looking into John Edwards' ideas when they might not have done so otherwise. I would bet that every person sniping at Edwards on this blog (and the blogger herself) are members of the proud 30% that still support George W. Bush. Keep in mind, there is no uproar of complaints from people who received these emails. This blog is nothing more than the attempt of a right-winger to damage the deservedly positive response that the Edwardses are getting right now.

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I'm waiting for Slick Willie's ticker to seize up, ala Vince Foster, so the Hildabeast can play THAT sympathy card as well as blaming the VRWC! Again.

Posted by: NOHILLARY! | April 4, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Pretty disgusting to use the health issue for financial gain, but I guess it's typical fare for a Democrat.

Posted by: John | April 4, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Typical of Democrats to say the least. They've been scaring us for decades that the evil Republicans were gonna take away our Social Security and then they do nothing to fix it.

Posted by: WW2vet | April 4, 2007 2:42 PM | Report abuse

you caneiac01, For how long have been employed by the Edwards campaign?

Posted by: Geez | April 4, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else ever notice that right-wing chicks like Malkin, Ingraham, and Akers are HOT while the LEFT has sacks of puke like Lynne Stewart, Rosie O'Triplechin, and Shrillary Clinton!?

Posted by: sniperbob | April 4, 2007 2:48 PM | Report abuse

10 years. I write his briefs (and wash them too) when he is suing doctors into bankruptcy!

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 2:54 PM | Report abuse

GGGF, I found some love in you. Your argument has fatal flaws, but I admire your efforts to put a little meat on the skeleton.

Libsrioser: Your observations support my points. Just so you know, I am republican, Christian, and a tad to the right of Attila (sp?). I wonder without knowing if you have ever known anyone who is a member of the groups you cyberspit on. You clearly were wrong about me, and I wonder if you could be wrong about them ...but I will keep lookin for love in you.

Posted by: Where is the love | April 4, 2007 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I have never been employed by the Edwards campaign. I have however been a supporter since 1998 (since that time I've donated a grand total of $50.00 to his campaigns).

What Ms. Akers failed to point out is that there is no specific link for sending a get well card to Elizabeth Edwards on johnedwards.com. There is a "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth" link that has ALWAYS been on the website. This has ALWAYS been used to gather email addresses for their mailing list. This is STANDARD PRACTICE on ALL campaign websites in this day and age. When you click on this link you are taken to a page that has recently been updated to contain a message from John and Elizabeth thanking all of their well wishers. Below this message is a place where one can send their own message. When sending this message you have the option of listing your email address and zip code.

So everyone can dismiss the notion that the Edwards campaign put up a special "Get Well Card" link to entice well-wishers to provide their email adresses so that they could turn around and be solicited. Again, the generic "Send A Note" link has ALWAYS been on the website (going back to his 2004 campaign).

Ms. Akers is a right-wing hack and is misrepresenting facts.

Posted by: the real caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 3:10 PM | Report abuse

There is no such word or phrase as "heart-wrenching". It is only correct to say "heart-rending" (since rend means to tear) or "gut-wrenching" (as in twist).

Posted by: Chuck | April 4, 2007 3:21 PM | Report abuse

"What Ms. Akers failed to point out is that there is no specific link for sending a get well card to Elizabeth Edwards on johnedwards.com. There is a "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth" link that has ALWAYS been on the website. "

Ms. Akers owes an apology to the Edwardses.

Posted by: annb | April 4, 2007 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Both Elizabeth and her husband "TURN MY STOMACH!!!!!

Posted by: Erica Stephens | April 4, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse

But Edwards is soaring in the polls... 1st in Iowa and 2nd in New Hampshire on http://www.solidpolitics.com

Posted by: William | April 4, 2007 4:26 PM | Report abuse

One post asked if it would have been more appropriate to ask for donations for cancer research.

The poster must of forgot that when Edwards was running for Vice President, he said if elected it would go along way in curing paraplegics and quadriplegics. (paraphrasing)

So, elect Edwards to cure cancer! sticker is on the way I'm sure.

His hubris is overwhelming.

Posted by: AreDNmYheaD | April 4, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

you caneiac01, For how long have been employed by the Edwards campaign?

Posted by: Geez | April 4, 2007 02:43 PM
`
10 years. I write his briefs (and wash them too) when he is suing doctors into bankruptcy!

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 02:54 PM
`
Posted by: the real caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 03:10 PM
`


I know I'm just inviting trouble by making this comment, but it appears one of the right wing creeps on this website used another person's screen name to make an utterly banal joke. Whoever did this is despicable and is violating the rules of engagement. If you were a soldier you would be summarily executed. The Sleuth needs to register screen names so that this doesn't happen in the future.
Now I know this juvenile jackass is going to start using my screen name after he reads this. Here's the way to tell if you're reading an imposter. If it supports any rightwing position, if it is illogical, or if it lacks wit, irony, or bonhomie it is not a genuine Sonofabastard comment. BTW that is the first, and hopefully the last time I've ever referred to myself in the third person.
The phony Caneiac01 is a twatwaffle. The original Caneiac01 is right on all points.


Posted by: Sonofabastard | April 4, 2007 4:36 PM | Report abuse

"http://www.washingtontimes.com/national/20040816-011234-1949r.htm

Edwards history lesson"

This article makes many false statements. Specifically, it claims that Edwards' lawsuits bankrupted doctors--yet fails to name even one such doctor.

It also claims that rising premiums are a result of malpractice lawsuits, another claim not backed up by the evidence. When states impose caps on recovery for economic and other damages, insurance premiums do not go down. In fact, historically, the "tort reform" calls get the loudest every time the insurance industry hikes its rates--and republican politicians and judges respond by manipulating uninformed voters into accepting their dubious "reforms."

Finally, it is painfully obvious that frivolous lawsuits are economically viable to nobody except defense lawyers--who charge $500/hr to defend them. Edwards is correct when he says that any professional and experienced malpractice lawyer will carefully weed out frivolous claims (or else he will lose money on the case).

I don't even consider Edwards a good candidate. But at least you could be informed when you comment on an issue.

Posted by: Chris | April 4, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"Wouldn't it have been more appropriate to solicit donations for cancer research rather than for the campaign?"

Amen.

Senator Edwards, you disgust me.

Posted by: Alex in New York | April 4, 2007 4:46 PM | Report abuse

What Ms. Akers failed to point out is that there is no specific link for sending a get well card to Elizabeth Edwards on johnedwards.com. There is a "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth" link that has ALWAYS been on the website. This has ALWAYS been used to gather email addresses for their mailing list. This is STANDARD PRACTICE on ALL campaign websites in this day and age. When you click on this link you are taken to a page that has recently been updated to contain a message from John and Elizabeth thanking all of their well wishers. Below this message is a place where one can send their own message. When sending this message you have the option of listing your email address and zip code.

So everyone can dismiss the notion that the Edwards campaign put up a special "Get Well Card" link to entice well-wishers to provide their email adresses so that they could turn around and be solicited. Again, the generic "Send A Note" link has ALWAYS been on the website (going back to his 2004 campaign).

Ms. Akers is a right-wing hack and is misrepresenting facts.

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Well consider the source,,,

Edwards is after all an ambulance chaser of the highest er, lowest order.

Posted by: Mickey B. | April 4, 2007 4:55 PM | Report abuse

From a NC resident ...

With fear of sounding too insensitive, let me say this ... I find John Edwards' obvious use of his wife's deadly illness for political gain to be shameless and disgraceful (but not surprising). More interesting is the total refusal by the major media to make this conclusion (presumably for fear of being labeled insensitive), but rather to portray John as "strong" and "caring" for "being willing to bravely push ahead despite her situation." Anyone should have been able to see right through this when John decided to hold a national press conference at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill to address the situation rather than just issue a press release stating his wife's condition and saying that the campaign would continue but asking everyone to "respect the privacy of his family during this difficult time?" His use of e-mail sympathy notes to broaden his fundraising base is only more evidence of the opportunism at work in this instance. I suppose the fear of being portrayed as insensitive prevents an honest conversation about it.

Also, Lay off Mary Ann! I've known her since we were kids. She's a great person. Go, Mary Ann Go!

Posted by: J4Justice | April 4, 2007 4:55 PM | Report abuse

I believe the term is "pimping". Trial lawyer Edwards is "pimpinp" his wife's medical condition for sympathy donations. This guy's a trial lawyer; is anyone really surprised?

Posted by: TomB | April 4, 2007 5:05 PM | Report abuse

Perfectly legal.

Perfectly slimy... but perfectly legal.

Posted by: Disgusted Dem | April 4, 2007 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I made the mistake of sending an email of well wishes to katherine harris back when she was being assaulted in the media during the 'hanging chad' fiasco. I say 'mistake' because when she decided to run for congress, she took everyone's captured email accounts off of her .gov mailserver and began pummeling us for campaign contributions. Nice, well done honey.

Posted by: dave | April 4, 2007 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Let me see...have any of you people using the term "trial lawyer" like an insult ever been in need of one? I doubt it. Either that or you are business shills simply out doing your stealth marketing.

It will be a rueful day indeed when you are injured by a person, product, or business entity and find yourself shut out of the system you are railing about.

Posted by: OO | April 4, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

John Edwards is a sleaze. But so is his wife for letting him use her for his politcal lusts. All Edwards apologists should answer this question: Can you ever, ever, ever see John Edwards shaving his precious hair in support of his wife if she loses hers to the effects of treatment? I mean, you get the feeling that even Bill Clinton wants to take a bath after reading about this stuff.

Posted by: Scott | April 4, 2007 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Nah... The Edwards campaign isn't using her illness for political gain. They'd never do that.

Posted by: John | April 4, 2007 5:24 PM | Report abuse

From another NC Resident,

There is nothing insensitive about questioning the Edwardses handling of Elizabeth's cancer. In fact they have said that it is a fair and legitimate debate given that he is running for President. But what is wrong is to misrepresent facts as Ms. Akers has done in her blog. But I'm less angry at her for writing it as I am at WP for putting a link to a Limbaughesque blog on their front page.
The Chapel Hill press conference was necessary because a simple press statement would have left too much open to interpretation by the media and improper reporting (as was the case with The Politico). It was crucial to make it clear to all supporters that Elizabeth was not in a sickly state and that the campaign is still viable. Make no mistake about it, the press conference was primarily for the benefit and information of existing supporters. That's not to say that they didn't get a positive bounce from it but that's because it gave people an insight into the human side of this candidate. If you think that press conference was pure political calculation, it's because you have been conditioned to the slick underbelly of politics (and I can understand that). So I challenge you to delve past your own knee-jerk perceptions and study the candidates background, case history, statements and policy stances. While you may disagree with Edwards ideologically, I challenge you to provide anything SUBSTANTIVE to discredit his character.
By the way, I would be interested to know where you got the quote about "respecting their privacy" as I have seen or read nothing to that effect (and I have followed this very closely).

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 5:27 PM | Report abuse

My cat's breath smells like cat food.

Posted by: Ralph Wiggum | April 4, 2007 5:31 PM | Report abuse

That statement from Jonathan Prince is an outright lie. Nothing on that form to send them a sympathy note says a word about agreeing to receive return emails and you can get directly to that form without entering an email address anywhere else.

Posted by: RW | April 4, 2007 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Earlier this week, it was announced that Elizabeth Edwards's cancer can be controlled and treated with estrogen hormone therapy. My question is this: With all their considerable resources and medical experts behind them, how could they not know this information a week and a half ago when they made their very public revelation that Elizabeth had an incurable (but treatable) cancer recurrence. So now, days later, we're told it is indeed curable. While I'm happy for the family for this news, something tells me that they knew the prognosis all along, and were just using her illness as way to pump up the Edwards campaign's cash draws.

Posted by: How could they not know? | April 4, 2007 5:33 PM | Report abuse

To "How could they not know"?
It's a rhetorical question. They DID know. JE is an opportunist. It's his life. Screw while the getting's good. He saw the opening and made his move. Apparently EE is the same, oh, and doing well as well.

Posted by: TomB | April 4, 2007 5:48 PM | Report abuse

I say this to all those on this blog calling Edwards an ambulance chaser: Imagine that your five year old daughter was disemboweled when she was sucked down onto the drain in a kiddie pool after other kids had removed the drain cover. Imagine that she will now have have to be on a feeding tube for the rest of her life and that her long term care will cost $10,000 to $12,000 per month. Now imagine that you find out the company that manufactured the drain system had been in trouble before over other fatal injuries caused by the same problem. Imagine that this company willfully neglected to make a design modifcation to the drain cover that would have kept it from being removed by kids, even though the modification would have cost less than $1.00 per unit. Would you not want to sue the pants off of this company? Would they not be deserving of the most severe penalty for their neglegence? Would you not want a very capable trial lawyer to handle your case?

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 5:54 PM | Report abuse

To How Could they not know:

Get your facts straight, the news that has come out in the last day or so is not that Elizabeth Edwards's cancer is now curable, it is simply that it appears her cancer should be receptive to hormone therapy (as opposed to chemotherapy) and that the prognosis is good for her to live a long time. But still the cancer is not curable.
If the Edwardses are the opportunists that you're making them out to be wouldn't they be trying to hide this news to milk the sympathy train for all it's worth?
And to answer your question about 'how could they not know'? I'm no doctor but but tests and labwork still take some time, no matter who you are.

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 5:59 PM | Report abuse

To Caneiac01:
And your point is? Whatever sad story makes Edward's tactics acceptable?
Sounds like you have a dog in this fight.

Posted by: TomB | April 4, 2007 6:06 PM | Report abuse

To TomB:

What tactics are you referring to?

Posted by: Caneiac01 | April 4, 2007 6:11 PM | Report abuse

To use his wife's illness like that. The guy has a soul as cold as the south pole. Nothing is off limits if it gets him what he wants. This sounds personal to you.

Posted by: TomB | April 4, 2007 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Caniac, the tactics Tom is referring to is what is outlined throughout this blog -- that the Edwards campaign is playing the sympathy card (and the email card) to raise cash. As for the estrogen treatment, straight from her mouth on April 2: "I consider that a good sign. It means there are more medications which I can expect to be responsive."

Maybe "curable" is too strong a word, but that word actually came from their camp (or emissaries of their camp). Incredible when you consider that a week ago, this recurrence was not treatable in this manner at all. And yes, lab work does take time. But if the lab work was not completed as of a week and a half ago, why would anyone endure a public press conference without the complete story or more information still to come? It's akin to announcing a pregnancy before the medical results confirm it. Would you tell anyone, "I might be pregnant as of last night?"

To do so, or to believe otherwise, would be woefully naive.

Posted by: How could they not know? | April 4, 2007 6:39 PM | Report abuse

This is almost like stealing from a charity. How low does this slimy trial lawyer have to go. I have no doubt they knew all this beforehand. The guy is a trial lawyer who gives SLIME a bad name.

Posted by: Shame_On_You_John! | April 4, 2007 7:06 PM | Report abuse

There is only one appropriate response to the subject of Elizabeth Edwards' cancer. You say "I hope she gets better". That's it, there are no ifs, ands, or buts to add.
This blog and all of the comments saying John Edwards is exploiting his wife's cancer are rooted in evil. If you trace these opinions to their source emotion, you'll discover a dark, cynical, nasty place called hell. Or for the non-believers it's called sociopathy, pure and simple.
You can disagree about Edwards on the issues, you can even question the website designer, but if you've taken the time to write a blog or post a comment implying Edwards is using his wife's cancer to further his political aspirations you're indecent.

Posted by: Sonofabastard | April 4, 2007 7:55 PM | Report abuse

I don't have an opinion about this story because I don't know the fact (they certainly aren't presented here). But I do have an opinion about the neocon reactionaries posting comments. Fortunately, a promise I made to my dead mama precludes me from expressing it.

Posted by: Anglico | April 4, 2007 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Edwards is campaigning the way our system forces politicians to campaign; get money any way you can. The problem isn't Edwards, the problem is that campaign finance isn't funded publicly.

And it's too bad that Edwards isn't as respectable as that lying mass murderer, G. W. Bush.

Posted by: Tony Ledford | April 4, 2007 8:42 PM | Report abuse

pretty said attempt at journalism like a lot of posts here.

candidates signing petitions or sending cards are not automatically added to any list. They have the option to opt out if they choose. And if they do choose, they can also choose to opt out later. And they can choose not to give money. If people get unwanted emails from the campaign, they aren't likely to give money are they? so its the campaigns interest to have people sign up legitimately.

Maybe if you had done some actual research on this instead of just guessing it would have helped. And the unsourced sources, the "some say" dont really add much to your credibility. You feed into a lie that it seems many posters above actually believe.

If you are going to write about something as sensitive as this, have the integrity to get your facts straight.

Posted by: okamichan13 | April 5, 2007 12:04 AM | Report abuse

"This is almost like stealing from a charity. How low does this slimy trial lawyer have to go. I have no doubt they knew all this beforehand. The guy is a trial lawyer who gives SLIME a bad name.

Posted by: Shame_On_You_John! | April 4, 2007 07:06 PM"

Everyone reading this must notice that the "trial-lawyer-slime" folks never come back with a factual response. They exist solely to make the rest of us think that *everyone* hates those trial lawyers.

"shill(shl) Slang
n.
One who poses as a satisfied customer or an enthusiastic gambler to dupe bystanders into participating in a swindle."

DON'T BUY INTO THE LIES.

Posted by: Mike | April 5, 2007 1:03 AM | Report abuse

What is next? An Edwards fireside chat,with me watching from my bungalow,and they in their 2 Americas 28,000sq.ft home with their 2 neglected children.
Somebody ,please tell these 2 to go home!

Posted by: Erica Stephens | April 5, 2007 9:03 AM | Report abuse

To: "How could they not know"

Tom B's post in which he basically asked me if a sad story justified any tactic was in response to my summary of one of John Edwards's cases in which I asked all of those calling Edwards an ambulance chaser what they would do if they're daughter had been injured in that way. So he was not referring to any insinuated tactics regarding fundraising practices.
This is the classic right-wing shift that is used when they can't back up their attacks with substance. First they attack Edwards because Mary Ann Akers painted a false picture of his campaign as trying to trick people into sending get well cards to Elizabeth so that the email addresses of well-wishers could be obtained. When that's debunked they start calling him a slimy lawyer and an ambulance chaser. When asked what about Edwards's case history is frivilous, they say his "tactics". When asked "What tactics?", it goes back to the false attacks about fundraising, which (besides being phony) have nothing to do with his case history?
What keeps being missed by the people blasting Edwards on here is that they can't back up their attacks with substance. They are so blinded by the hatred and cynicism that has been pounded into them by Limbaugh and Coulter that they just can't slow down long enough to realize that their attacks are empty and baseless.
If John Edwards's background as a trial lawyer is so slimy and rife with frivolity, then why haven't the GOP used it against him. If they could "swiftboat" Kerry, it seems like a slimy trial lawyer would be an easy target. The answer? Because his case history is solid and admirable. Go to findlaw.com and look it up.

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 5, 2007 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Dear Caneiac,
Just for the record, I am not a right wing idealogue. I vote both sides of the aisle. Both parties have virtues; both have sins. In the last presidential election, I voted for Kerry & Edwards over Bush. Before that, I voted Bush over Gore. I have also voted for both Clintons and Bush the Father.

In the upcoming election, neither party has proferred a candidate I think deserves to win. Popularity is one thing; true leadership is another. And that is currently lacking from both sides of the aisle.

Incidentally, as for Edwards's legal case history, I am very familiar with it. As you said, it's all on the public record. And on that record, he made his fortune.

Posted by: How could they not know? | April 5, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

progressives are terrible people. there is nothing surprising about this.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

wow such wise and intelligent comments at the Washington post. Half of you morons can't spell, and most of you spill out bile from the left and right that's totally useless.

Sure the blogs here are bs, desperately trying to jump on the internet to save the dying print paper, but it's too late. But you people are amazingly dense. Do you talk to your mothers with foul mouths like that?

I bet you're all cowards hiding behind your crappy computers with AOL typing away thinking you are "doing something" by typing up retarded posts. Good job , ladies and germs.

Posted by: internetdoofus | April 5, 2007 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Please count me as one Democrat who's not afraid to have you use my name rather than hiding - anonymous - while making decidedly harsh judgments about the Edwards campaign. Elizabeth Edwards says that she is in for this fight. It's the challenge of a lifetime for her. She wants to see her husband lead this country. Whether or not direct appeals were made for funds from those who showed concern about Mrs. Edwards' illness, isn't concern and support of Elizbeth Edwards a more worthy "special interest" than some of the FAR more shady donors who give for something to a campaign expecting to get special favors back later on?

Posted by: Jude Nagurney Camwell | April 5, 2007 2:13 PM | Report abuse

I find it unbelievable that we finally have someone like John and Elizabeth Edwards to stand up for the common, everday American-people and they get trashed for doing so. Very sad. The Edwards are the kind of people you can count on in a struggle because they have struggles that I never want to have. Yes, they are wealthy, what national political person isn't? That doesn't mean they are not real and care for those that have less than they do. God bless them and their efforts for ALL Americans, not just a few!

Posted by: John C. | April 5, 2007 2:38 PM | Report abuse

It is amazing the John Edwards blog raised as much money as it did when one considers the class of bloggers there-----desperate housewives who have no lives, technogeeks, the unemployed, and a whole slew of lonely elderly. They all utilize it as a personal chat forum. They aren't going to contribute SERIOUS MONEY for heaven's sake!

Posted by: Ben Dovernow | April 5, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

i've attempted to test Caneiac01's "debunking" and this is how it comes back.

1) the page akers describes is exactly as she describes it.

2) caneiac01's assertion that the "send an e-mail to john and liz" link has "always been there" is untestable because the website uses a script called "robots.txt" to prevent search engines from taking snapshots of the page and archiving them.

it's possible caneiac01 is just misremembering. it's not uncommon for zealotry to give way to illusion. but surely it can't be suggested that the note which accompany's the form was "always there".

to review. people who had heard about elizabeth's cancer and wanted to send their well-wishes would find on the edwards website a picture of the two captioned, "send a note to elizabeth and john". clicking that link, they'd find another picture of elizabeth and john accompanying a note thanking well-wishers and talking about the cancer. underneath is a form titled again, "Send A Message To Elizabeth and John". akers is correct that the page refuses to process your well-wishes unless you specify an e-mail address.

in short, people who sought to offer their simple well-wishes had their e-mail addresses agrgessively harvested and later recieved solicitation for political contributions.

3) caneiack01 can't of course prove that the "send a note" link has "always been there. certainly, the context in which such a feature was abused wasn't "always there". but caneiack01 offers some kind of evidence by way of alleging that similar features are so common to campaign sites as to almost be standard. this is very testable, and in reviewing the websites of obama, romney, kucinich and others, i found no such similar feature. certainly not one it is offered to the user to contact primarily the candidates' wife.

so, that's what canaiack's "debunking" is worth. once again, when the truth is printed about a progressive, progressives are prepared to throw smoke into the room and yell fire rather than aknowlege that they are sometimes imperfect.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Well I never intended to vote for Edwards, but I thought about sending a "good wishes" note to his wife. Now I am glad I was not suckered into the sympathy trip. How low could a politician get to hit on well wishers for money when they express sympathy to his cancer-stricken wife?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

you know what's hysterical about this article...it's as if John Edwards is the ONLY candidate soliticiting donations online! I happen to be a John Edwards supporter and have only "registered" on his website but I get emails from the Joe Biden campaign, Barak Obama campaign, AND the Hillary Clinton campaign on a REGULAR basis and have not asked for a single one! Get over the sympathy thing already...the Edwards' have themselves said over & over (just yesterday in Des Moines, IA) "it's time for the news to be NOT about us and our personal struggle...it's about America's struggle and YOUR struggle and the need for America to reclaim it's position of standing for the good of it's citizens and for those around the world." It's time for John & Elizabeth Edwards to be in the White House...NOT because of sympathy...BECAUSE IT'S TIME FOR AMERICA TO BE A SHINING LIGHT IN THE WORLD AGAIN!!!

Posted by: cherie | April 5, 2007 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Wouldn't it be nice if politicians such as John Edwards didn't have to worry about raising cash for his campaign, or any one running for public office for that matter.
However thanks to Mitch McConnell, and the money hungry Republicans, they are forced to raise cash wherever and however they can.
Once he's in office I'll bet we change that.
Bless you John and Elizabeth!

Posted by: Acebass | April 5, 2007 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Goodness, who let the critters out of their cages? Someone get the nets and catch them varmints and stuff them all back in their cages, please!

Posted by: GEEZ | April 5, 2007 4:58 PM | Report abuse

acebass wants the existing government to perpetuate itself by choosing which campaigners get funding.

mitch mcconnel and i would rather that we the people choose who deserves our consideration.

additionally, i believe that alleged men who cash in when their wives succumb to cancer are not worth consideration for executive office.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I rest my case. See how easily you can differentiate the Edwards blogsters here? All flowers and roses but no hard, cold facts.

Go! I urge you to visit the website. It makes for a most entertaining read.

Posted by: Ben Dovernow | April 5, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

What is wrong with someone who thinks that John Edwards would HONESTLY use his wife's illness to promote his Carreer!!
Or His nomnation!

This is excately what is wrong with America today, we judge each other without any feeling what so ever!!

I ask you all to visit Johnedwards.com and see the REAL thinkers. And know REAL feelings!!

My Vote will foeever be for JOHN EDWARDS, and I think if you only took 1 real look, you'd know that this man is the most honest man that has run for The White House in Years!!

We are use to a crook , and it makes us think like crooks!!

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH..

Think for yourself!!

Vote for EDWARDS!!

Posted by: Phjyllisg | April 5, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

This is just so rich! Priceless!

Posted by: Ben Dovernow | April 5, 2007 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Thank You.

Elizabeth and I are so grateful for your prayers and wishes. Your support means a great deal to us during this difficult time.

As you may have heard, yesterday we found out that Elizabeth's breast cancer is back, but confined mainly to her bones. Although this isn't the news we wanted to hear, we are very optimistic. Having been through many struggles together in the past, we know that the key is to keep your head up, keep moving and be strong. And that's exactly what we intend to do.

Elizabeth and I have been married for nearly 30 years and we will be in this every step of the way together. We will keep a positive attitude and always look for the silver lining--that's what we do.

Although the cancer is no longer curable, it is treatable, and many patients in similar circumstances have lived full, energetic lives. We expect nothing less for Elizabeth. She expects to do all the things next week that she did last week.

Our campaign goes on and it goes on strongly. We are so proud of the campaign we are running--a campaign based on ideas and reaching out to people. This campaign is not about me or Elizabeth--it's about all the people we have met these past few years and people like them all across America and the world--people worried about feeding and clothing their kids; people without health care; people facing hardships overseas.

Both of us are committed to this campaign. We're committed to this cause and we're committed to changing this country we love so much.

Thank you again for your support and for standing with us.

John Edwards

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Send A Message To Elizabeth and John

First Name:
Last Name:
Email:
City:
State:
ZIP Code:

Your Message:


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
-----> Check here if you'd like to receive future emails from the campaign.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

There's the thank you many asked for.

Oh, yep, there's that pesky checkbox at the bottom asking if you want to receive future email from the campaign.

If people cannot read or follow simple instructions, I don't expect them to be able to form meaningful opinions or come to useful conclusions.


Posted by: Bill R. | April 5, 2007 5:46 PM | Report abuse

others have said that checkbox was not there before and as i've noted, there's no way to prove that it was there prior to this dissapointing, shameful news becoming public.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Go see for yourself,
email address not a required field,
opt out check box clearly there.

http://johnedwards.com/news/thank-you-20070322/

First Name:
Last Name:
Email:
City:
State:
ZIP Code:

Check here if you'd like to receive future emails from the campaign.

Submit

Posted by: Truth | April 5, 2007 5:57 PM | Report abuse

others have said that checkbox was not there before, and as i've noted, there's no way to prove that it was there prior to this dissapointing, shameful news becoming public.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 5:59 PM | Report abuse

I sent a message without an email. I received no error.

Posted by: Truth | April 5, 2007 6:14 PM | Report abuse

True james,

but if it was there and you simply don't think it was there - that doesn't make it really shameful. Only shameful in your opinion. And if it was there - it also makes your opinion wrong.

I don't know for a fact if it was there or not - neither do you or any of the others who have said that it wasn't. It's a moot argument since it's a he said / she said thing.

The only thing shameful is how pointless things become "issues" that we should concern ourselves. I mean - geez, isn't there a war going on somewhere, aren't the terrorists still at-large, have we found a cure for major diseases?

Mary ann Ackers - about this blog:
".. a newsy, nosy and irreverent look at what happens behind the scenes...."
It sounds rather petty and gossipy, but if that's your cup of tea brother - enjoy the hemlock.

Posted by: Bill R. | April 5, 2007 6:15 PM | Report abuse

All right -- the issue at hand, to start with. Yes, it probably would have been wise to note on the page that email addresses entered on that page would be added to the John Edwards mailing list. However, the page is no more 'deceitful' (if you want to see it as such) now than it was before the cancer announcement.

I will mention that every email I've seen from the Edwards campaign has included an unsubscribe link, so opting out of Edwards mailings is a very easy thing to do. I CAN say that page has been there for at least a month prior to the cancer announcement.

Robots.txt is not a program for 'hiding' earlier versions of pages. It is a program which directs search engine spiders to revisit and re-index the site every thirty days, thus making sure that the information the search engines display is relatively up to date. It is standard on every professional and business website, and a lot of personal ones as well.

Too many people were already aware that something was up for the Edwards family to delay the announcement for any significant amount of time. As it was, they waited until they had at least a reasonable picture of the situation, and an accurate one. The cancer that Elizabeth Edwards is NOT curable. It is something she will be being treated for for the rest of her life. It does prove to be -- at least at this time -- a more easily-treatable form of the cancer than they had at first feared. Anyone who's had, or has dealt with, cancer knows how quickly the picture, painted by tests and follow-ups and new discoveries, can change.

John Edwards is, at this point, a very wealthy man. He wasn't born that way. He worked hard to become so. I doubt any of his former clients consider him an ambulance chaser. I CAN guarantee that the president of AETNA has made far more off the insurance industry than John Edwards has. AETNA, or ANY health insurance company. Compared to the profits the insurance companies make off insurance premiums, the settlements of such cases as John Edwards' are peanuts.

Also, interestingly enough, John Edwards is the only candidate with a substantative plan (at this point; Obama says he's formulating one) to address universal health care and make sure that health care premiums are affordable by EVERY American. Yes, of course the insurance companies want you to see increasing premiums as the fault of 'ambulance-chasers'; the LAST thing they want is for you to look at are the multi-million dollar pension packages (paid for by -- oh, wow! -- YOUR INSURANCE PREMIUMS) given to retiring insurance company CEOs.

So, whether or not John Edwards was in fact, as some here have seemed to claim, single-handedly responsible for wrecking the health industry in America, he is, so far, the ONLY candidate with a solid plan for fixing it. Or... wait! Maybe it was all just a weaselly political set-up! Maybe he spend all those years in law school (he was, by the way, the first person in his blue-collar family to attend college, let alone law school) just so he could become a trial lawyer, so he could then single-handedly wreck the health industry, so that he could then, thirty years later, run for president on a platform of fixing the very industry he'd brought to ruin! What a coup! What a fantastically sleazy political move!


Finally, yes, PLEASE go to the John Edwards site: www.johnedwards.com. Check this man out for yourself. Read the articles. Watch the videos. He makes his positions on issues very clear. And then decide whether you agree with those positions or not, and vote accordingly.

Yes, I support John Edwards, after having spent a lot of time researching him and the other candidates, and finally driving six hours round trip to meet him in a very small gathering (about 100 people) which allowed me a chance to talk to him one on one before making up my mind to support him. Nope, not employed by the Edwards campaign. I'd be happy to be, though.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 6:42 PM | Report abuse

The first line of Ms. Aker's blog is a lie and that can't be denied.

It reads: "When you visit the John Edwards for President Web site, you're invited to send a sympathy note to the Edwardses"

That is completely false. As you can all see for yourselves, there is only a link that says "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth".

Since the first line of Ms. Aker's attempt to smear a good man and his wife is a lie, that should be a dead giveaway that the entire blog is nothing but garbage aimed at deterring the positive response that the Edwardses have received over the last couple of weeks.

Posted by: caneiac01 | April 5, 2007 7:09 PM | Report abuse

"I sent a message without an email. I received no error.

Posted by: Truth | April 5, 2007 06:14 PM"

quite simply, you are a liar. anyone can confirm this for themselves.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Edwards must be doing something right, otherwise the RNC vitriol wouldn't be so obvious here. SMEAR SMEAR and dab with a pinch of FEAR..So transparent..I think he would make a GREAT PRESIDENT. OBGYNs are mostly callous, male chauvenistic, condescending .... you would have to be a woman to understand.

Posted by: Sonja | April 5, 2007 7:42 PM | Report abuse

James -- I didn't see it at first, either, because when the page reloads you have to scroll down to see the error message. I thought it had gone through at first, too.

But yes, you do have to add in city, zip code, and email address for the form to work. And yes, there IS a check box as to whether you'd like to receive future emails or not. I don't know if it was there before because I hadn't attempted to send an email by this route before.

I have to say, faced with a president who has subverted the entire political process, undermined entire sections of our constitution and bill of rights, and led us into an incredibly costly war on false information, the fact that the Edwards campaign and web designers may have originally overlooked putting an opt-out box on their contact form is, IMO, such a pathetically small issue.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 7:50 PM | Report abuse

it's unfortunate that caneiac01 cannot let go of this. after having his "debunking" shredded, he comes back repeating with even more strident language:

"The first line of Ms. Aker's blog is a lie and that can't be denied. It reads: 'When you visit the John Edwards for President Web site, you're invited to send a sympathy note to the Edwardses.' That is completely false. As you can all see for yourselves, there is only a link that says 'Send a Note to John and Elizabeth'"

caneiac01 is just incorrect. the offer to leave a message reads, "Send A note To Elizabeth and John." in other words, the feature is about leaving notes of sympathy for elizabeth.

caneiac01 insists on misremembering and misreciting the text backwards because he recognizes that his "reccollection" of the feature as "always" having been there and having nothing intrinsicly to do with elizabeth's condition depends on it calling users to leave a note for john the candidate primarily, his wife elizabeth secondarily.

instead, it called users to leave a note for elizabeth, recently stricken with cancer, primarily, her husband john secondarily.

i doubt caneiac01's reccolection of this feature having always been there. mainly because the text calling the reader to leave a note "for elizabeth..." is not markup text, but part of an image. were the text just markup, there'd be a sliver of room to believe that the names were reversed to adjust for the tone of the campaign post the press conference. the fact that the text is an image button which then links to a page primarily dominated by text about the announcement of elizabeth's cancer, leads me to believe that the feature didn't exist previously.

in fact that is the only reasonable presumption. the alternative story that the feature was "always there" comes from one lonely commenter who identifies himself as an edwards loyalist. it is upp to him to prove his assertion, and i suspect that he won't be producing any screenshots of the campaign site's front page any time soon.

Posted by: jummy | April 5, 2007 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Jummy,

I do know the feature was there at least a month prior to the cancer announcement, because that's when I first joined the site. I think you may be right -- I think it may at that time have read "Send a note to John and Elizabeth", rather than "Elizabeth and John". My perspective is that the Edwards family has dealt with her condition in a very forthright and open manner. I don't see that they've 'milked' it or 'played' it, although it was naturally going to grab attention in an environment where Anna Nicole Smith's death gets more air time than the entire primary race, so far. We are a nation obsessed, apparently, with the personal.

Elizabeth herself has said that the heightened coverage has been a good thing for the campaign, she's very upfront about that. Her position is that if it means one person who otherwise wouldn't have makes the opportunity to listen to John's views, then they HAVE gotten something positive out of a very negative and horrible situation.

I actually read someone's assertion (on another blog, luckily!) that John Edwards must be THRILLED his wife has cancer -- look how much mileage he's gotten out of it! My jaw just clanged off the floor. I completely understand why we've gotten so cynical about politics in this country. That's one of the reasons I wanted to meet him in person, and in an intimate setting, before making up my mind.

No, he's not thrilled. Of course not. But they are both making the best of a horrendous thing that, in an ideal world, would never happen to anybody. In fact, if anything, it's committed them even stronger to their goals, one of which is to make sure that every American has access to the same kind and quality of health care that Elizabeth Edwards is currently getting.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Daphne Charette,

"indexing" is one function of roobots.txt "exclusion" is another. the edwards '08 page uses robots.txt to instruct search engines not to archive snapshots of the page. anyone can confirm this by searching it at archive.org.

otherwise you seem to be willing to hold edwards' water and i have no explaination for that. it's a shame really, to see so many people who seem like they'd be able to think for themselves. instead, they've become so blinded by hate towards half their countrymen that they've come to follow someone like edwards despite what is known about him.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 8:30 PM | Report abuse

"My perspective is that the Edwards family has dealt with her condition in a very forthright and open manner. I don't see that they've 'milked' it or 'played' it..."

you go on following that theme for three more paragraphs, but i never suggested any such thing.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 8:35 PM | Report abuse

"I do know the feature was there at least a month prior to the cancer announcement, because that's when I first joined the site. - daphne"

it's very conveniient of you to recall this at this point, but i think you may just be looking at the "answer sheet", so to speak.

screenshots. please.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 8:41 PM | Report abuse

James, I was responding to a lot of posts in toto, not entirely to just yours. I confess, I was too lazy to scroll up and divide my response into sections addressed to each poster!

Actually, I don't hate my countrymen at all. I do have a great deal of contempt for the entrenched money interests in this country. John Edwards is the only one I've seen willing to stand up to those interests.

What, exactly, is "known about him"? The fact that he used to be a trial lawyer? Because certainly, if there are tangible facts that form a reason not to support him, of course I'd want to know what they are.

I'm curious about the robots.txt thing, since I have precisely the same program on my own website. I'm on my way to check out archive.org. I'd like to see what it says about my site.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Ah. Okay. Well, my site doesn't show up at all (I wouldn't expect it to, I'm small and unimportant). Obama's site seems to have the same program, though it doesn't display the 'disallow' message the way John's does.

I can't help shrugging my shoulders a bit and saying "So what?" The alternative seems to be throwing my hands up in dismay and crying "Oh no! It's a conspiracy! Obviously, John Edwards doesn't want me to see his old web pages -- so WHAT'S HE HIDING?"

Hee! I mean, really. I suspect we're giving this a lot more discussion than the web designers did.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 8:52 PM | Report abuse

no. you're right. it's exactly the sort of cya maneuver common to lawer-types.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 8:54 PM | Report abuse

James, check my first post in this thread.

I will say, though, I'm having fun poking around George Bush's screenshots. This really is kinda cool -- I never knew about this site! :)

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Okay, so your issue with him is that he's a "lawyer-type"? Well, yep. He was a trial attorney. So I guess that makes him a lawyer-type.

Seriously, I can only compare this to, oh, conspiring to subvert the judicial system in this country, or suppressing documents calling into question the justification that Iraq was manufacturing weapons of mass destruction. And I'm afraid my net reaction is stark amazement that this is EVEN being built into anything vaguely resembling an "issue".

But wait. Maybe he has mice in his barn. Obviously he keeps them there to shred the incriminating documents. ARREST THAT MAN!!!

LOL!

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 5, 2007 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Everyone here that talks about how all politicians are slime, should do yourselves a favor and research Ron Paul. Perhaps the ONLY honest candidate for President. You may not agree with him on every issue, but he supports the Constitution and doesn't want to steal your FREEDOM. Vote Ron Paul 2008.

Posted by: Tim | April 5, 2007 9:59 PM | Report abuse

well, don't misrepresent me daphne. i was only reflecting your remark which i think correctly concluded that one can either choose to be indifferent to his campaign site's use of robots.txt or conclude that there's an effort to control what is archived.

i don't draw it into a totalizing critique of the man. if anything, what i do find troubling and shameful is a man harvesting the e-mail addresses of well-wishers to spam for campaign money. i hope that's not a partisan concern.

you seem to have reacted that way though, launching into a hyper-partisan non-sequitur about a conspiracy to subvert the judicial system (filling open scotus seats = "subversion"?), "suppressng documents" and wmd.

i hope you're not trying to frame all evil as "something the other guys does". not when democrats including edwards' former running mate john kerry and the current speaker nancy peloci can be quoted as speaking with certitude about "saddam's wmd's" as far back as 1998. that's a long time *before* downing street. the ice gets thinner when you consider that the most stark incident of an official suppressing documents in recent years was when former clinton security advisor sandy berger smuggled classified documents from the national archives and destroyed them prior to the 9-11 commission hearings.

i think we've had enough of being divided into "two americas". i hope disgust at the exploitation of a spouse's cancer diagnosis isn't a "two americas" thing.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Bill R.,

of course, because of the campaign site's use of robots.txt to suppress third-party archiving, it's not possible to prove that the "send a note" feature wasn't present before the press conference. it's not akers' or my burden to prove a negative. akers reported on what is.

a semi-anonymous commenter has thrust onto the scene calling her a "liar" and alleging that the feature had "always been there". there are a number of reasons to disbelieve him, but they are hardly worth going into considering that the burden to prove his allegation rests on caneiac01's shoulders, and he has not yet endeavored to do so.

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 11:03 PM | Report abuse

I love this game!

Let's talk about anything that isn't really important and divert attention away from the real issues.

Let's see how I do on my turn.
1) When you visit the John Edwards for President Web site, you're invited to send a sympathy note to the Edwardses.
---> Ok, you go to a candidate's web site and see "Send a note to John and Elizabeth". How did this become an "invitation" to send a "sympathy" note? Not every clickable link is an invitation, it's just a link to an article or a feature. There is no indication that you are to use the feature to express sympathy - there is a "thank you" once you get inside. Period - if there is any misleading being done here - it is by Mary Ann Ackers and the off-key choir of commentators.

2) What those well wishers get in return -- e-mail messages soliciting contributions to Edwards's campaign.
---> Ummmm, ok. Pure snark - the next paragraph better explains what they get. Remember, you are on a political candidates web site and you are providing your e-mail address. Now if you were on a web site that was not John Edwards for President and the campaign used addresses that were typed in by the owner - that would be a bit of a sticky wicket. But nope - you're on the candidate's web site and you gave them your e-mail address. Try the same thing on ANY candidate's web site - yeppers, they collect e-mail addresses. So it's a bit disingenuous of anyone to think that when you give out your e-mail address, it won't be used. If the campaign gave out the addresses to a third party - that too would be a sticky wicket, but nope, the campaign sent out the emails Mary Ann Ackers "complains" about in this topic. so far everything is above board and honest.

While I'm at this point - there is that checkbox that james and others don't think was there.
Nothing I can do about what they "think is there or not there".
I know that it IS there (I also know that MAA posted this topic a little more than a day ago and that the campaign staff isn't that fast, they're good, just not fast. so if the checkbox wasn't there it would take more than 29 hours to get one put on the page ;)... moving on
Ummm - WMD... are they there, were they there? Hard to tell without a screenshot.

3) Anyone who then chooses to send a note of sympathy to the Edwardses -- and, thus, provide his or her e-mail address -- automatically becomes part of the Edwards campaign's online e-mail database, a list that is crucial to any campaign's ability to raise vast amounts of money over the Internet.
---> Again with the "sympathy note". Ok, if you sent them vitriol, would you automatically become part of the campaign? Oh, that opt-in checkbox is probably only there for notes of sympathy. People forget what they type and what boxes they check - c'mon MAA, admit it - you checked the box didn't you? You wanted to get future email from the campaign so you could write this story and use your crayons to color it dark.

4) And you would have received Monday's announcement that the campaign had exceeded its online fundraising goal, raking in more than $3.3 million over the Internet.
---> Ummm, ok.... annnnnd? It's not like they had a 'K' Street donor list (public or private) like two other candidates. Isn't it a good thing to send out an 'atta boy, you helped exceed our goals" message to the people who most likely contributed over the Internet? I don't see the point you're trying to make with this paragraph.

5) While Edwards has enjoyed a big surge in donations since he and his wife disclosed the return of her cancer, the campaign has not mentioned the "C" word in any of its fundraising solicitations. In fact, an e-mail sent to supporters on March 22, the day of their famous news conference, omitted the usual link to contribute money.
---> Now this paragraph is crystal clear. You're saying, in a round about way, that the campaign is using Elizabeth's recent diagnosis to fill the campaign coffers. That's a fairly cruel assesment. Wait-a-minit, am I on the National Enquirer's web site? Next thing you know, the topic will be "Elizabeth's cancer turned out to be an alien baby". What some people consider gossiping about! Sheesh.

6, 7, 8) "said some Democratic critics"
"One Democratic operative, citing comments made by Edwards"
"Another Democrat, who asked to remain anonymous"
---> Innuendo, hearsay, anonymous, gossip. Nothing in these "referenced" sources is worth the pixels.

If y'all want to talk about Health care, debt, combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, policing the 21st century mob (terrorists), world poverty, improving the worlds education levels, ensuring we have potable water and breathable air - I'll stop back and be glad to converse intelligently.

If y'all want to gossip and project your own dark fears onto others - have at it.

Posted by: Bill R. | April 5, 2007 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Whenver I've emailed any website like Amazon, Overstock, WashingtonPost, they've harvested my email address and put me on their list. Big deal.

John Edwards did the same thing and it should be expected because once you make contact with any organization raising money, it happens. If you don't want to give, don't give. As always, this is much ado about nothing.

And the right wingers who are so outraged about this think it's OK that we've lost 3000 Americans and there never were any WMD or Iraq links to 9/11. Shows you've got your priorities straight!

Posted by: Yvonne | April 5, 2007 11:25 PM | Report abuse

All this hatred of trial lawyers--until you need one! Trent Lott and his republican buddies villify trial lawyers but when Lott lost his house in Katrina and the insurance company wouldn't pay, what did he do? Hired the most successful trial lawyer in the country, Dickie Scruggs who also happens to be his brother-in-law and a DEMOCRAT!!

Posted by: Yvonne | April 5, 2007 11:28 PM | Report abuse

james,

I don't have a clue what you mean by:
"it's not akers' or my burden to prove a negative. akers reported on what is."

Since we, you and I, cannot prove what was (or was not), we can only prove what is (the checkbox IS there)- therefore ackers did not report on what is. Ackers posted the topic less than 30 hours ago - trust me on this, the campaign doesn't work that fast on changes to the website. Just in case you go to the dark side and accuse me of working for the campaign - fuggetaboutit (they wouldn't have me ;)

It is Ackers job to verify and validate information she "reports".

Principles of Journalism
http://journalism.org/resources/principles

1. Journalism's first obligation is to the truth
2. Its first loyalty is to citizens
----------------------------------------------------------
3. Its essence is a discipline of verification
----------------------------------------------------------
4. Its practitioners must maintain an independence from those they cover
5. It must serve as an independent monitor of power
6. It must provide a forum for public criticism and compromise
7. It must strive to make the significant interesting and relevant
8. It must keep the news comprehensive and proportional
9. Its practitioners must be allowed to exercise their personal conscience

You and I can say/write almost anything we want, but when people are paid to write, well - read the priciples again.

This circular type of "argument" is useless. Was there, was not... was too, was not... I'm tellin'

Children debate more important issues better than this discourse.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 5, 2007 11:46 PM | Report abuse

"Ok, you go to a candidate's web site and see "Send a note to John and Elizabeth"."

nope. see above. if this is such a big nothing, why is there such effort to repeatedly misstate the facts?

"Remember, you are on a political candidates web site and you are providing your e-mail address."

the site scripting leaves the user the stark choice of either leaving an e-mail address or leaving nothing.

"...there is that checkbox that james and others don't think was there."

you're right, there is as much proof of the non-existence of the checkbox prior to this expose as there is of the existence of the feature prior to the presser. obviously i'm not going to pursue that except to the extent that giving people the option of leaving a message of sympathy with strings attached or remainind silent like a cad is a pretty manipulative choice to offer.

"Oh, that opt-in checkbox is probably only there for notes of sympathy."

don't be disingenuous. the page on which that checkbox appears is only and expressly there for notes of sympathy.

"If y'all want to talk about Health care, debt, combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, policing...world poverty, improving the worlds education levels, ensuring..."

right we get it. edwards has a "plan" to eliminate one of the "two americas" and return the world to innocence and plenty. "just go to our website..."

if this is a big nothing, why so eager to change the subject?

Posted by: james | April 5, 2007 11:53 PM | Report abuse

You're the winner james. You wore me down and I quit.

Logic such as:
"nope, see above"
"right we get it"
"why so eager to change the subject"

simply astounds and dumbfounds me. but the one that made me say uncle was:
"there is as much proof of the non-existence of the checkbox prior to this expose as there is of the existence of the feature prior to the presser"

I think you could prove the existence of God with that sort of double speak.

Enjoy yourself.

Posted by: Bill R. | April 6, 2007 12:08 AM | Report abuse

i don't know who this is from. i'm assuming bill r..

akers didn't introduce the checkbox into this. it seems you did. so accusing akers of breaching journalistic rigor for somehow misrepresenting the checkbox is a charade similar to taking a picture of someone and blacking out their reeth with a magic marker so you can critisize their dental hygene.

i did challenge the checkbox. it was a silly point which i regret pursuing. it also has no effect on anything else i wrote.

when i wrote what i quoted, i was referencing caneiac01's allegation that the feature had always been there. that so far is the only effort at "debunking" akers' expose.

you and daphne have entered with an argument something along the lines of "so what?" if that's your attitude about this, it speaks for itself.

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 12:09 AM | Report abuse

Although Mary Ann is obviously trying very hard to make the case that John, as you claim, exploited his spouse's medical condition, I'm just not seeing it. They've acknowledged people's interest in the topic; they've been as forthright as they can about what information they have and what decisions they've made, and why -- all of which is a damn sight better than a 'leader' who is pretty much resorting these days to "Because I said so!"

Sorry about 'judicial'; what I meant to type was 'justice system'. And neither Pelosi nor Kerry went to the FBI and said "We want to go to war with Iraq; find us a justification."

Collecting a freely-offered email address on a political site that is there to help build support for a candidate is anything but shameful. It's more like, uhhhh, what the site is there for. WOW! What a shock.

I truly hope lying to the American public and propelling us into an unjustified war isn't a partisan concern. I'm awed at your ability to even class a website doing what it's designed to do as 'troubling' and 'shameful'. I merely responded with things that I'd think were troubling and shameful to ALL Americans, regardless of party affiliation (for the record, I don't have one. I have a candidate affiliation -- in NH you don't have to be a registered party member to vote in the primaries).

I, also, am very very sick of this country being divided into two Americas -- those who control wealth and with it, control far too much of our government. John Edwards is also very very sick of it. And that's why he's running.

To repeat, this for me is NOT Democrat versus Republican, because there are damn good public servants in both parties. For me, it is about those who feel corporate interests should be allowed to continue controlling our government, economy, and policy decisions, and those who don't.

To reverse my above statement (not contradict it, just reverse it) this is not Democrat vs. Republican because there are members of BOTH parties perfectly willing to continue the status quo, sacrifice the needs of We the People in favor of their corporate backers. Those are the lines I personally divide my politics on. To me, the whole Democrat vs. Republican show IS about divisiveness. It's about distraction. It's about keeping us fixed on labels which have very little meaning any more, to obscure the fact that large numbers of politicians in BOTH parties dance, under their veneer of 'difference', to precisely the same drummer. Sometimes they vary the tune a little bit. That is not, to my mind, a real difference.

It's very telling that the neoliberal agenda of the 90s is now the neocon agenda of today. The earmarks remain the same -- centralized control, globalization of not only the economy but also political power, the weakening of the individual countries and states, all with a focus on removing self-determination from the hands of the 'unwashed masses' (that would be 'us') and putting it in the hands of a small, powerful elite (that would be 'them') -- who, of course, will be the 'Deciders' of our fates, all in our best interests, of course.

And you're asking me to be upset or see something sinister in the fact that John Edwards doesn't archive his old web pages. Dear God.

Posted by: Daphne Charette | April 6, 2007 12:10 AM | Report abuse

"You're the winner james. You wore me down and I quit."

no bill, when dishonest people fold, *america* wins.

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 12:16 AM | Report abuse

james,

yep that was mine.

When you say "akers didn't introduce the checkbox into this" I once again went to her words
"Anyone who then chooses to send a note of sympathy to the Edwardses -- and, thus, provide his or her e-mail address -- automatically becomes part of the Edwards campaign's online e-mail database"

I shouldn't automatically assume that people know what automatically means. Yep, I brought up the checkbox to dispute MAA's assertion of "automatic". The rest of your diatribe
"so accusing akers of breaching journalistic rigor for somehow misrepresenting the checkbox is a charade similar to taking a picture of someone and blacking out their reeth with a magic marker so you can critisize their dental hygene." lays in waste in light of this fact.

Unfortunately, your challenge to the checkbox effects everything you have written. It casts doubt on your ability to differntiate between your opinion and facts. You are entitled to your opinion, you're just not entitled to your own facts.

Posted by: Bill R. | April 6, 2007 12:24 AM | Report abuse

well that's what we all want, right james?

America to win. So when do you think all of those dishonest people will fold?

Soon I hope.

Well that certainly was fun. Hey, could I ask who you are supporting in 2008 james?

Posted by: Bill R. | April 6, 2007 12:31 AM | Report abuse

really? it seems that i've reevaluated and retracted it four posts ago.

are you still maintaining that the feature is titled "send john and elizabeth a note"?

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 12:35 AM | Report abuse

"Hey, could I ask who you are supporting in 2008 james?"

i can guarantee that i won't be voting for bush.

i do wonder what will animate the progressive base in his abcense.

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 12:42 AM | Report abuse

james,

I think you should vote for Bush - why not?

ummm, no I can read - I know what the topic's title is. The problem is that the subject matter of the topic doesn't match the title.

I wonder what Bush's legacy will be when historians finally sort through all of the duplicity.

Oh well. Hey, you know that Teddy Roosevelt was a progressive. Maybe progressives of this era could reanimate his agenda - "speak softly but carry a big stick", "preserve the frontier lands for future generations", "grow a really cool mustache and wear glasses that will be the envy of John Lennon" - something along those lines.

I think it's just you and me now - Later, it's been fun.

Posted by: Bill R. | April 6, 2007 12:56 AM | Report abuse

"see you in the morning, ralph."

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 2:28 AM | Report abuse

I'm not even sure if you're accusing John Edwards of an ethics violation or accusing Edwards of doing what any other presidential candidate does, fund raising.

Those who sent a message to the Edwards were fully aware that they were providing their email address to be contacted for fund raising purposes, so what on earth is the problem here,Mary Anne?

You haven't quoted any horrified folks who sent their condolences and thought John Edwards had some nerve asking for their email address. Maybe one of your Republican activist friends could pretend to be irate so you'd have at least one outraged condolence sender to quote. That's how Karl Rove would tell you to play it. Who cares about the truth when you can get another Swift Boat scandal up and running! Get out there a bust some some liberal heads wide open like a true Republican, Mary Ann.

What annoys me about your brand of drive-by journalism is that every by 6 pm every conservative blog monkey has some refried version of your story posted and the blog monkeys are making even more loose associations and wild accusations.

By the next morning your garbage innuendo about a big bunch of nothing has spun it wheels for 24 hours and gained enough traction for the infotainment reporters of the right wing to be adding new improved refinements and personal embellishments to your pathetic little story.

If you are trawling for a Democratic scandal at least have the integrity to raise an issue that is remotely related to John Edwards' character and ethical behavior instead of taking potshots at a perfectly decent human being, like a you're a standard issue Bushevik dumbagogue.

I don't know which insider you knew at the Washington Post to get a job there, but they made a big mistake. Your lack of journalistic ethics speaks for itself.

Posted by: Gavin | April 6, 2007 3:46 AM | Report abuse

the funny thing about "swift boat" entering the lexicon as a synonym for "smear" is that the swiftboat veterans for truth accused kerry of dishonest opportunism. kerry accused them of war crimes and atrocities. and that's how it works when it comes to smears: one way.

the other funny thing is that no one has been able to demonstrate that any of the svt claims were false. you're invited to try: http://patterico.com/2007/04/05/6118/abc-news-smears-swift-boat-veterans-for-truth-with-slanderous-news-article/

Posted by: james | April 6, 2007 10:34 AM | Report abuse

All of the right-wingers who are peddling their slime here, as well as the Edwards-worshippers who like the man's positions and manner, and who respect him for weathering so many tragedies so well--as I do--can, ALL OF YOU, just calm down, because Edwards is NOT going to be the Democratic Party's candidate, and neither is "Shrillary." The reason? Because, as someone wrote above, they're so "polarizing" and have been around sufficiently long to galvanize such inexplicable hatred.
No, we're going to nominate and ELECT Barack Obama, and his campaign is going to follow much the same pattern as JFK's "amateur's approach" to the problems that beset the country in the 60s. So, right-wing character-assassins and neo-con war-mongering idiots, you better start sharpening your knives for him. And you better try making 'em REAL sharp, because the man's like teflon--just like the only great President your crew ever gave us.

Posted by: digbydolben | April 6, 2007 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Rush is slime. How do you judge the Edwards in this way or encourage such hate on your site? Is Rush back on the Oxycontin? Has he found a new source for his illegal drug buys?

Posted by: Barry Weathers | April 6, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

I've always liked and admired the Edwards. And I liked their countdown for $s so much, that I contributed twice.

Posted by: wminot | April 6, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

It's not like John Edwards is the first or only candidate to ask for money! I support John Edwards for President. I've registered on his site and I recieve fundraising emails from him. The funny thing is, I get emails from Clinton, Obama and Biden as well. I don't and won't support those candidates, I could cry "spam," but folks this is the brave new world, this is America and, ultimately this is how it should be.

Posted by: Clay Turner | April 6, 2007 3:57 PM | Report abuse

From Time's Swampland Blog:

"What Ms. Akers failed to point out is that there is no specific link for sending a get well card to Elizabeth Edwards on johnedwards.com. There is a "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth" link that has ALWAYS been on the website. When you click on this link you are taken to a page that has recently been updated to contain a message from John and Elizabeth thanking all of their well wishers. Below this message is a place where one can send their own message.
So everyone can dismiss the notion that the Edwards campaign put up a special "Get Well Card" link to entice well-wishers to provide their email addresses so that they could turn around and be solicited. Again, the generic "Send A Note" link has ALWAYS been on the website (going back to his 2004 campaign)."

Ms. Akers, Before you jump on the SMARMYBoat (as opposed to Swiftboat), please do your freaking homework.

Posted by: Lori | April 6, 2007 11:27 PM | Report abuse

As the above poster notes, the premise of your entire article is false and you owe a retraction. At least one of your journalistic colleagues had the sense to do an update:

http://time-blog.com/swampland/2007/04/the_edwardses_and_upselling_sy.html

UPDATE: I'm embarrassed that it took "Anonymous" to point this out (here I'd been thinking I'd improved on the whole "reporting" front), because it's an important detail:

"What Ms. Akers failed to point out is that there is no specific link for sending a get well card to Elizabeth Edwards on johnedwards.com. There is a "Send a Note to John and Elizabeth" link that has ALWAYS been on the website. When you click on this link you are taken to a page that has recently been updated to contain a message from John and Elizabeth thanking all of their well wishers. Below this message is a place where one can send their own message.

So everyone can dismiss the notion that the Edwards campaign put up a special "Get Well Card" link to entice well-wishers to provide their email addresses so that they could turn around and be solicited. Again, the generic "Send A Note" link has ALWAYS been on the website (going back to his 2004 campaign)."

Mary Ann's story -- and my post -- both leave the impression that it's a specific get well note that lured people in. It isn't. It's true that the current "message" from John and Elizabeth on the website is about her illness, so I imagine that many of the notes they got were about that news, but it's not as though the campaign was specifically asking for get-well wishes and then (intentionally or not) asking sympathizers for money.

Then again, the fact that the "send a note" form has been a part of the site for years backs up the theory that someone just forgot to change the default collection of emails on this generic "note" form after the Edwardses made their announcement.

Posted by: okamichan13 | April 7, 2007 11:05 PM | Report abuse

I always love how the righties parrot the same talking points and then accuse liberals of being sheep.

Posted by: wwcross | April 8, 2007 2:16 AM | Report abuse

This blog continues to amaze with an overall lack of neutrality in opinions. Partisanship is fine and dandy, especially if you have a horse in the race. But at the end of the day -- whether you're on the right or the left -- only objectivity has credibility.

Facts are more than easy to find, and to test. The true challenge of any pundit is how to embrace facts rather than mask them with rhetoric or opinion.

Posted by: How could they not know? | April 9, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

The democrates and republicans are without concern for the United States of America. We should all become INDEPENDENTS.

Posted by: rllukan | April 10, 2007 11:45 PM | Report abuse

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