Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

Blogging, Bounded

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, December 22 2008

(In an ongoing experiment, we sometimes repost and slightly expand upon a compelling item covered in the Daily Digest. This is one. -- the editors)

The Center for American Progress (CAP) Action Fund's acting CEO Jennifer Palmieri has jumped into CAP blogger Matt Yglesias's blog space to issue a "special note." Palmieri distanced the think tank from Yglesias's dig at the organization Third Way as peddlers of "hyper-timid incrementalist bull____," guilty of trying to sell their approach as one and the same as the aggressively moderate approach of Barack Obama. Yglesias's post:

There are a variety of issues that they have nothing whatsoever to say on, and what policy ideas they do have are laughable in comparison to the scale of the problems they allegedly address. Which is fine, because Third Way isn't really a "public policy think tank" at all, it's a messaging and political tactics outfit.

One hitch: Third Way is a CAP partner. Oopsie. Palmieri wrote under the very banner of Yglesias's blog:

Our institution has partnered with Third Way on a number of important projects - including a homeland security transition project - and have a great deal of respect for their critical thinking and excellent work product. They are key leaders in the progressive movement and we look forward to working with them in the future.

The more than 450 comments on Palmieri's mea culpa (or perhaps her "Matt's culpa") weren't kind. Here's a representative one: "This post is EXTREMELY creepy."

With CAP head John Podesta leading the Obama transition effort, it's hard not to see the organization as eager to be the very embodiment of institutional big-tent progressivism. Yglesias's critique of Third Way might be fair and incisive journalism. But having their star blogger calling foul on one centrist group of moderately high profile doesn't help that institutional mission much.

When Yglesias left the journalism world at the Atlantic for the think-tank world of the Center for American Progress, he assured his faithful blog readers that from their point of view, the move "probably won't make a huge difference." That may well have involved a good dose of wishful thinking.

News Briefs

RSS Feed thursday >

First POST: Resets

Apple's new iOS8 promises greater user privacy; Occupy Wall Street three years later; how tech may tilt the Scotland independence vote; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Connecting the Dots

Take Back the Tech grades Facebook, Twitter, et al, on transparency; MayDay PAC founder Lawrence Lessig talks about getting matched funds; and much, much more. GO

tuesday >

First POST: Splits

USA Freedom Act divides Internet activists; Julian Assange's Reddit "Ask Me Anything"; New York's pro-net-neutrality protest; and much, much more GO

monday >

After Election Loss, Teachout and Wu Keep Up Net Neutrality and Anti-Comcast Merger Campaign

The Teachout/Wu campaign may have lost, but their pro net-neutrality campaign continued Monday as both former candidates participated in a rallly in New York City marking the final day to comment on the Federal Communications Commission's Internet proposals and kept up their pressure on Governor Andrew Cuomo. GO

friday >

NYC Politicians and Advocacy Groups Say Airbnb Misrepresents Sharing Economy

A coalition of New York election officials and affordable housing groups have launched an advocacy effort targeting Airbnb called "Share Better" that includes an ad campaign, a web platform, and social media outreach. GO

First POST: Data Dumps

The Internet Slowdown's impact on the FCC; Uber drivers try to go on strike; four kinds of civic tech; and much, much more. GO

More