A strategy analyst for the New York Times who was one of the organizers for United for Obama? Some grassroots person! Perhaps in the rarified air which Times reporter Kate Zernike breaths. After all she was the same reporter who somehow managed detect racial overtones in the Brooklyn accent of Jason Mattera speaking at CPAC. So what was Zernike's lame excuse for failing to reveal Park's background working as a political operative for Obama? Jacobson provides the laugh lines:
Interesting, I received a phone call from Kate Zernike, the author of the NY Times article, who felt that I did not sufficiently credit her article with disclosing Park's background and motives. Specificially, Zernike pointed out that the Times' article said the Coffee Party "was formed in reaction to the Tea Party" and offered "an alternative" to the Tea Party. Zernike also felt that the pro-Obama nature of the Coffee Party was adequately disclosed because the article pointed out that one of the organizers in California (not Park) had campaigned for Obama.
I explained that I did not feel that the NY Times article adequately disclosed (i) the depth of the connection to the Obama campaign reflected in Park's background, or (ii) that the specific purpose of the Coffee Party, as expressed in Park's Tweets, was to undermine the Tea Party.
I told Ms. Zernike that I would do an update to this post, and I hoped that she would do an update to her article to explain Park's Obama connection and apparent motivations. Ms. Zernike declined, explaining that she had to limit her article to 700 words.
Yeah, and it would have taken another dozen words or so to have explained about Park's political past. Hey, 700 words is the hard cutoff point. Right?
As to Park herself, she was a bit more than disingenuous when she made this claim of solidarity with the Tea Party movement:
“We’re not the opposite of the Tea Party,” Ms. Park, 41, said. “We’re a different model of civic participation, but in the end we may want some of the same things.”
Unfortunately her own words on Twitter belie her phony claim:
Are we going to sit & watch the tea party take our government & media? Come on! That's inexcusable. Get off of your butt.
we must deal with reality instead of indulging the paranoid fantasies of the #teaparty. join #coffeeparty
we're not going to take this tea crap anymore. let's work for change! #coffeeparty
Jacobson makes this spot on conclusion about Park and her "grassroots" Coffee Party:
It is very clear from Park's background, and her own Tweets, that the Coffee Party simply is part of the perpetual Obama campaign, a means by which to subvert the real grassroots Tea Party movement by co-opting part of the message, but in a way which supports keeping Obama in power.