Monday, February 18, 2008

President's Day

PRI's (Public Radio International) Studio 360 has good Lincoln piece called The Battle of Lincoln that is not recommended for neo-Confederate historical revisionists like the folks at Second Vermont Republic, League of the South or "Vermont Commons".

(Note: Studio 360 has been having a problem on the direct link and may take you to On The Media. If that happens, link to Studio 360 here and click the player on The Battle of Lincoln piece.)

Friday, February 15, 2008

Thomas Naylor's Racist Admirer, James Edwards, Raises The White Flag At "The Political Cesspool"


On Wednesday, James Edwards, a white supremacist, homophobic, anti-Semetic radio personality and admirer of former Klansman and neo-Nazi, David Duke, announced that he was throwing in the towel, presumably a white one.   Edwards is a member of the League of the South and attended the Chattanooga Secession conference co-sponsered and organized by by Thomas Naylor; the white supremacist head of the LoS, J. Michael Hill, who has said that slavery is "God-ordained"; and Naylor's Middlebury Institute colleague and Second Vermont Republic member, Kirkpatrick Sale.   The Southern Poverty Law Center has the whole story here.   You can read Edwards' very own swan song here.   JD Ryan pokes a stick into the dead horse for old times sake over at fivebeforechaos.   Major HT goes to Odum for having first spotted the Naylor/Edwards connection.

Edwards' program has been promoted by the Holocaust denial organization known as The Institute for Historical Review (I wonder what their take is on Abraham Lincoln?), the neo-Nazi group (see banner above from the Stormfront website) and the Council of Conservative Citizens (formerly known as the White Citizen's Council) where Edwards serves as a Board of Directors member, who promised to send out a special "White Christmas" card to anyone making a donation to "The Political Cesspool."

Edwards has called Thomas Naylor "a good Confederate."   That must be true.   Naylor's only appeared on Edwards' program one time less than Edwards' true hero, David Duke.   I can even remember Tom stressing his Southern roots to Edwards and saying how much he wanted to keep in touch with Edwards and his show.   It must be comforting for Edwards to known that there are people in Vermont who will miss him dearly and all that great media exposure he gave you and SVR among his racist and anti-Semite audience, eh Tom?   Of course, that's only likely to be you and those two klansmen, Tom (See "Bad News" ).

But probably no one will miss Edwards more than his neo-Nazi pals at Stormfront.   They're already post their boo hoos and white solidarity crap on a thread that's bound to grow.   Edwards, a "sustaining member" at the Stormfront hate website has posted this:

"Dear Friends:

While I rarely have had the time to post on Stormfront, there is never a day that passes that I don't visit this site. The support that we have received from Derek and Don Black, Jamie Kelso, David Duke and everyone else here has been absolutely astonishing.

I announced the end of Political Cesspool on Wednesday morning, when Stormfront was down. I will now copy and paste my original letter below, for anyone who may be interested.

As long as there is life in us, we will continue to fight together, my brothers and sisters.

Thanks for always being there.

With Love and Respect,

James Edwards"
Perhaps Edwards best summed up the folly of it all best in his farewell address:
"It’s been said that sharks die if they aren’t swimming. Well, similar to the Great White, I’d die if I were not contributing to the survival of our race."
Great white... sigh.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Finally, A Poll On Secession in Vermont That We Can Use...

... or, "Second Vermont Republic Fails To Get On Any Town Meeting Ballots Despite Its Assurances To The Contrary"

Yesterday, AP's John Curran had a story on the failure of Vermont's secessionist tag team, the Second Vermont Republic and Vermont Commons', to get a secesssion question on even one of Vermont's Town Meeting ballots.

This is more significant than it might appear from the spin Rob Williams tries to give in the Curran story.
"The message is that the idea of Vermont independence is a new and radical idea, and it's not an idea people are going to come to easily," said Williams, of Waitsfield. "We're under no illusions. It's a difficult idea to accept. Once you sort of acknowledge that it's a viable option, people are willing to explore it.

"But this is our first year of getting this going,"
SVR has repeatedly promoted a poll that it has yet to admit to Vermonters that it commissioned and that it claims showed 8% support among Vermonter voters for secession in 2006.   SVR also claims that the support increased to 13% in 2007 for that same group. (Readers should take note of the fact that I've discovered Thomas Naylor has "disappeared" numerous posts on his website that I've cited here, such as those having to do with his phony polls except for this last embedded reference to it, his failed legislative team, and others.)
"Once you sort of acknowledge that it's a viable option, people are willing to explore it?"
Let's see, when voters are asked, "Should Vermont secede from the United States and become independent?" and supposedly 8% and then later 13% of them answer yes, that isn't an indication of acceptance or support for the idea as "a viable option?"   Come on.   That kinda spin must make even Rob dizzy.   When you then take into account that in Waitsfield, the community that must be considered VTCommons' base of support both in terms of advertising support for its publication and in fund raising, Williams (who has family serving in town government) was unable to gather the 5% of signatures of registered voters needed to get a secession question on the Waitsfield Town Meeting ballot.   Hell, apparently he couldn't even get 3% of the town's registered voters to sign his petition.   Other calls to Thomas Naylor's or his SVR Legislative Team leader Peter Moss' hometowns, Charlotte and Fairfax, failed to reveal any effort whatsoever to get a secession question on their own Town Meeting ballots.

Last month, in answer to my question to him about their progress in putting the secession question on Town Meeting ballots, Moss told me in writing that,
"Yes, some towns have secession resolutions on the town meeting ballot."
No doubt the lying could be chalked up to a typical politician's machinations in pursuit of objectives that have little public support, but is lying really the best method to advance such objectives in the face of such underwhelming support?   The more Vermonters come to know this present crop of secessionists and its supporters, the less likely it is that Vermonters will find their style acceptable and worthy of support.   That the leaders at SVR and VTCommons are dishonest can not be denied, but will Vermonters be any less inclined to repudiate their agenda when they learn that at least one blogger for VTCommons finds segregation (euphemistically called "homogeneous communities") acceptable, even a desireable consequence of secession?

Perhaps it's the self-delusion and not just the political dishonesty that caused Rob put this "best face" post up on the matter.   Complete failure to meet any of the legislative goals set for the 2008 Town Meeting can't be considered a good start for 2009.   More bullshit won't make the SVR Legislative Team look any better.   You see, when I asked Moss if there were any who were running for office this year as committed secessionists he answered,
"Yes, a few have registered for membership. We are a long ways from 50% + 1 we need for a binding secessaion declaration, but we are working at it."
Care to say who these candidates are?   Rob?   Peter?   Tom?   Anyone?

And please, don't tell me that they're anonymous for now.

UPDATE: JD Ryan at fivebeforechaos has more on Naylor and Williams' slouching towards secession.   The idea of a real discussion about secession is being explored at Green Mountain Daily, as well.   That'd be a refreshing change from the lies and delusions floated by the SVR and VTCommons crowd.


UPDATE (2/16): The Anti-Neo-Confederate makes mention of this post here.   I strongly urge those interested in revelations about the neo-Confederate movement outside of Vermont to check it out.

Monday, February 11, 2008

What A Difference A Year Can Make

Last year when I first heard of the Second Vermont Republic I had no idea where this would lead when I decided to put up a blog.   I did sense from what I'd learned initially that there was something "wrong" about the group but really I had no inkling of the depth of intellectual dishonesty that permeates the neo-Confederate movement, of which SVR is very much a part, or of the role Thomas Naylor and his cohorts at "Vermont Commons" were playing in the "Vermont secession" charade.

What I'd first thought was a possibility, that the whole "Vermont secession" thing was just a "boiling frog" scenario intended to dupe Vermonters into being the front group for a plot by a neo-Confederate cabal that Naylor has had a long, long involvement with, has turned out to be true.   Naylor spelled it out when he said that the plan was "to provide an example and a process for other states and nations which may be seriously considering separatism, secession, independence, and similar devolutionary strategies."   It turned out to be pretty much the only card in his deck and now that everyone's seen his hand the game appears to be over, at least where Vermont is concerned.

Whenever Vermonters look into secession, this seems to be where they ending up finding out "the whole story," i.e. the parts that Thomas Naylor and Rob Williams at SVR and VTCommons would rather Vermonters not find out about.   While the traffic here has been miniscule in blog terms (8,500+ hits since I started counting), it has served to get the truth out about SVR.   Even that wouldn't have been possible without the assistance of a number of Vermont blogs, most notably John Odum at Green Mountain Daily and JD Ryan at fivebeforechaos.   Out of state web resources such as the Anti-Defamation League, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Anti-Neo-Confederate and others have been invaluable websites for finding the information that "put the pieces together" regarding Thomas Naylor's longterm, deep ties with the white supremacist, neo-Confederate movement.   The thoughts, comments and suggestions of Odum, JD, the SPLC's Intelligence Director, Mark Potok, Ed Sebesta at the Anti-Neo-Confederate, as well as many others, have all served to improve the quality of what's been posted here and this blog would have been poorer indeed were it not for each of them.

I'd understood that "there m(ight) be some heat as I shed light on the topic of secession," but I never thought that I'd get the number of threats that I did that started this past fall and have continued up until last week.   One secessionist even went so far as to put the lie to Naylor's oft stated malarkey that his is a "genteel revolution."   According to the most recent attempt at intimidation by one obvious nutcase, who also happens to blog at VTCommons and does web work for other secessionists like Kirkpatrick Sale at the Middlebury Institute, this blog promotes "dissension" which will lead to a "violent civil war."   I guess the message we're to take away is that if we Vermonters won't quietly come forward to drink the KoolAid, there'll be trouble.

It'd been my intention to wind things down as the anniversary date approached.   SVR is a spent group with little crediblity or support in Vermont any longer, but the continuing threats and blatant attempts to intimidate have now changed that intention.   The blog will remain as a chronology of Naylor and his allies now almost comically tragic pursuit of nihility.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Super Tuesday

Someone needed to say it.   With all the focus on Hillary, Obama, McCain, Romney and Huckabee, lost in the shuffle for delegates has been the darling of secessionists, nativists and white supremacists, Ron Paul.   At the moment he's got four, count'em, four delegates and is arguing that he's upped his count by 75% in West Virginia.   Unfortunately for him and his supporters, nobody knows WTF he's talking about. If the delegate count thus far for Ron Paul is any indicator, the folks at the Second Vermont Republic and Vermont Commons should note that secession today is deader than it was in 1865 and just keeps getting deader.