Censorship at DemocraticUnderground.com

I created a new account at D.U. and got immediately censored and banned for expressing an unwillingness to compromise with religious fundamentalists on the issue of free speech. Sadly, it’s not just the Christian and Muslim fanatics who try to silence their critics. The admins at DemocraticUnderground.com have a policy of zero tolerance for my opinions. They’re going to be hearing a lot more from me in the future.

Here’s the thread where they clipped everything I said. I  used not one curse word, no personal hostility, just a bit of political self-expression which cannot be tolerated.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=364×331883

I sent the following emails to all the admins at D.U.

admin@democraticunderground.com, skinner@democraticunderground.com, earlg@democraticunderground.com, elad@democraticunderground.com

I’m not really troubled by your censorship, I’m only really troubled by your censorship of my discussion of your censorship policy and how it’s interpreted. I’m also troubled by having my email ignored afterward. You must be willing to defend your censorship and openly discuss it, or you have no credibility.

Balzac

On 2/3/06, Balzac wrote:

I can understand if you don’t want excessive profanity. I can understand if you don’t want to lose your christian democrats, so you delete blasphemy. After all, this site is to serve the interests of Democrats.

But you deleted every mention I made of your censorship. You should at least be able to discuss your censorship policy, rather than squelch conversation on that topic. I didn’t see anything in your policy about comments about your censorship policy. That was undeniably a heavy-handed response to my criticism.

Furthermore, I busted a guy who was enthusiastically pushing an ultra-right wing book, and I called him a Republican. You guys let freepers get away with waaay too much on DU. But you deleted some of those messages too, and suspended my account.

I think it might be more appropriate to call yourselves DLC Underground. Either that, or just take away the word ‘Underground’ from your name.

The underground of the democratic party is belongs to those of us who refuse to respect religious fundamentalism and show little patience for DLC Democrats.

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60 Responses to Censorship at DemocraticUnderground.com

  1. sac666 says:

    You ought to just give up on D.U., they are never going to let you have a discussion of their censorship policy. In fact as you have already seen, that will get you banned faster than anything else and they will delete anything that questions them or makes them look bad. I supported the site (with money I could ill afford) until I questioned a mods uncalled for ridiculing of a poster where upon the mods offending posts were deleted and all glossed over. When I questioned the decision to whitewash the mods bad behaviour and lack of apology, I was banned and all posts questioning the mods were deleted. I never got so much as a “Fuck You” in response. D.U. is not worth giving traffic to, as it reflects only what a very select group of people want it to reflect. DLC is probably being too kind.

    • gusandra says:

      I just had a censorship experience at DU. (It should be called FU: Fascist Underground.) I’m a registered member for 9 years and an occasional contributor. I got no explanation why I my posting has been revoked, and I have no way of viewing the offending post– no way of defending myself. I didn’t make a personal attack. I don’t know what caused the revocation of posting privileges.

      DU is right in line with the Bush/Obama policy of “who the hell cares about the right to a fair trial.”

      • Bruce says:

        Similar experience happened to me in late 2010. I had been banned, could not learn why, and numerous emails sent to DU and admins produced NO response.

        I don’t need DU, and they don’t need me. But it is quite chilling that their policy states they don’t have to reply to their decisions about who is or is not banned. Seems pretty fascist to me.

      • Nathan Gant says:

        I have also been permanently banned from DU. Based on a trivial post recently (Jan 2012). I questioned the authenticity of some of the Apollo manned moon missions, and stated that some of this was faked.

      • Gus says:

        I have solved the problem by voting with my feet. I just don’t go there any more. It’s not productive to try to attack them on their own web site, but it is good to hear of others experiences. FU will eventually collapse under the weight of its own UNDemocratic practices.

    • Darrell says:

      I just got censored for reporting on racist repression going on in Peekskill NY by other Democrats! lol. That says it all.

  2. balzac says:

    Hell, maybe they’re Republican political operatives, for all I know. If so, all the more reason to step up the resistance. I’ll make sure they have to acknowledge me in D.U.

    I don’t like to give up when I know they’re full of crap and I’m right.

  3. dedes says:

    balzac,
    I tried to view your censored message, but couldn’t find it.

    I wanted also to thankyou so much for the fabulous clip of Colbert, and I wondered if you might let me use/borrow your image of He-Man Colbert and Masters Stewart and Skelector Rummy and the rest to put on a T-shirt.
    I watch the video every day, and I feel better about the miserable state of our Union. Bravo to ya! Clarice

  4. Manuel A. Tellechea says:

    I sent the following e-mail to the Democratic Underground today. As you can see, my experience with them exactly mirrors yours.

    Gentlemen:

    In the middle of posting on your forum, I was informed that I had
    been “banned.” Since I only began to post yesterday, this seems on
    its face an arbitrary decision. I should like to point out that none
    of my posts were ever deleted even in that brief span, and that I did
    not violate any of your Rules. I know that my point of view is unique
    on this forum — an anti-Castro and anti-Bush Cuban-American, but I
    should hope that was not the reason for being silenced. Nevertheless,
    that is the only reason that I can think of.

    There are some elements of your forum that I find disconcerting,
    especially in a “Democratic” forum. For example, your “Alert” button
    which is as close to a Mcarthiate invention as could be fanthomed.
    And then there is this curious admonition: “If you do not get a
    response to your appeal, it is because your request was denied.”
    Curiously enough, that’s the way it’s done in Castro’s Cuba, too.

    Sincerely,

    Manuel A. Tellechea

  5. Manuel A. Tellechea says:

    CENSORSHIP AT THE “DEMOCRATIC” UNDERGROUND

    Democratic Underground, also known as DU, describes itself as an “online community for Democrats and other progressives.” According to its web page, its membership is restricted by policy to those who are “generally supportive of progressive ideals,” and who “support Democratic candidates for political office.” [1] However, the scope of discussion is wide and members represent a broad spectrum of liberal beliefs and backgrounds. DU was established on January 20, 2001, the day President George W. Bush was inaugurated.

    Since its inception, over 90,000 forum accounts have been created with over 1,000 still remaining active. Over 20 million messages have been posted. There is no cost for membership and participation, although voluntary donations are solicited quarterly, and some services are available only to donating members. DU publishes articles six days a week and has an online store, a directory of links, and forums where logged-in members may post on various topics of interest.

    DU has several regular columns, and on any given day may have a number of guest columns sent in from contributors.

    Mondays: Top Ten Conservative Idiots, a rundown of the most outrageous right-wing activities in the past week, according to the DU administrators.
    Wednesdays: The Plaid Adder writes her column.
    Thursdays: Ask Auntie Pinko, an ‘advice’ column.
    Fridays: Equal Time with Bob Boudelang, a satirical column supposedly written by a Republican Team Leader.
    Occasionally, DU will feature a Hate Mailbag of hate mail.
    Bernard Weiner and Ernest Partridge of The Crisis Papers[2] are frequent guests.

    Forums
    The DU Forums are a highly active scene for political discussions by “Democrats and other progressives”. To maintain the desired atmosphere in the forums, the administrators will sometimes “tombstone” (ban) users for violating site policies, such as these:

    We ban conservative disruptors who are opposed to the broad goals of this website. If you think overall that George W. Bush is doing a swell job, or if you wish to see Republicans win, or if you are generally supportive of conservative ideals, please do not register to post, as you will likely be banned.

    Do not publicly accuse another member of this message board of being a disruptor, conservative, Republican, FReeper, or troll, or do not otherwise imply they are not welcome on Democratic Underground. If you think someone is a disruptor, click the “Alert” link below their post to let the moderators know.

    Have a thick skin. Please be aware that just because you consider a post to be offensive does not mean that it is against the rules or bigoted. As a general rule of thumb, posts about ideas are generally okay, but posts about groups of people are often inappropriate.

    The main forums on DU have been re-arranged since the close of the 2004 US election season. They now include:

    Latest Breaking News
    Editorials and Other Articles
    General Discussion
    General Discussion: Politics (superseding “General Discussion: Campaign 2004”)
    The Lounge (for general non-political discussion)
    Other forums include:

    Individual forums for the discussion of state and local issues.
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    Individual forums for the discussion of certain relatively non-political topics such as books, science, and sports.
    “Group” forums where chartered groups of users may discuss topics of mutual interest such as hobbies, fan clubs, and potential 2008 presidential candidates.
    An “Ask the Administrators” forum was maintained until April 26, 2005; this forum allowed users to pose questions to the board administrators. This forum has now been shut down by the administrators, who felt that the forum was being used as a medium for people to issue complaints, with the nature of their complaints being inflammatory. A “Rules” page, a “Frequently Asked Questions” page, and a “Contact the Administrators” page showing the email addresses of the administrators have been substituted.

    Two of the most controversial forums are often scenes of hot debate between posters:

    The Justice/Public Safety board, used for discussing gun issues and commonly referred to as the “Gun Dungeon” or “Gungeon”; and
    The Israel-Palestinian affairs board, sometimes referred to as the “Basement.”

    Influencing polls
    Media websites (including newspapers, television networks, and America Online) run occasional “polls” that do not use the sampling methods of formal opinion polls, but instead invite everyone to respond. Some DU forum messages, usually captioned “DU this poll”, urge DU members to vote ‘en masse’ in these polls. The goal is to influence polls to reflect the aggregrate votes of DU members. After voting, members report back to thread, usually simply writing “Done” or “Done and kicked” (“kicked” meaning the message thread is being moved to the top of the forum page by the new message so that other members will see it).

    This sort of attempt to influence online polls is employed by many activist websites of all political stripes.

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    After the 2004 election, many members displayed an upside-down American flag as their avatar; an inverted flag is an international symbol of distress.

    An online community
    Some prolific members have posted more than 1,000 times (the point at which their posts stop displaying the exact total). Through frequent contact in the forums (including special topic groups) and online private messages, members come to know one another. Discussions range beyond politics to include such diverse subjects as pets, pet peeves, and pop culture. Occasionally, members organize face-to-face get-togethers.

    Like other communities, DU has its in-jokes. New members are often confused by DU vocabulary, usually referencing pop culture (“this thread needs more cowbell”), deficient spelling skills (such as “cazy,” “moran,” and “noble jesters”), or long-running threads that have worked their way into DU “lore” (“dupe,” “the kudzu thread”).

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    DU has an online campaign headquarters named “Campaign Underground.” The site, which was put together with help from DU members, features a database of information about campaigns, voting trends, and media. A “media blaster” feature provides the ability to email local media outlets in many U.S. cities. Eventually DU hopes to have other features, such as integrated local news from the forums, a local event calendar, and other issues specific to states and locals.

    Demopedia
    On December 7, 2004, DU launched the beta version of Demopedia, a wiki based collaborative project aimed at presenting the Democratic and progressive opinion and outlook, and at collating and preserving some of the information generated on the forums. During the beta, only users who had registered at DU before December 7 were able to contribute. It uses the MediaWiki software.

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    While supporters of Ralph Nader are a distinct minority at DU, many posts criticize the Democratic Party from the left. Democrats such as Joe Lieberman and Dianne Feinstein, who are more inclined toward compromise and conciliation with the Bush Administration, are regularly attacked at DU, while Democrats such as John Conyers and Barbara Boxer, who favor a more confrontational approach, are more highly regarded.

    Activism
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    Activist Corps
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    The first Activist Corps action was posted on July 12; members wrote letters to the editors of local newspapers regarding Karl Rove’s role in the leaking of CIA agent Valerie Plame’s name. More than 70 letters were published in newspapers throughout the country. Other Corps activities have included signing onlinepetitions to U.S. Senators asking them to reject Supreme Court nominee John Roberts, and to write letters of support Cindy Sheehan.

    Political candidates
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    Herb Riede, the Mayor of McSherrystown, Pennsylvania;
    Monica McGlocklin, a three-term former member of the Maine House of Representatives;
    Elizabeth Rogers, Congressman J.D. Hayworth’s opponent in the 2004 election;
    Jeff Seemann, Congressman Ralph Regula’s opponent in the 2004 election; (In an ironic twist, during his campaign, Seemann was banned from DU as a disruptor even though he was the Democratic Party’s candidate for his Congressional district.)
    Justin Sowa, Congressman Paul Ryan’s potential opponent in the 2006 election; and
    The late Andy Stephenson, a voting-reform activist who ran against Sam Reed for Washington Secretary of State in 2004.
    Carl Sheeler who is running for the Democratic Nomination to run for the US Senate from Rhode Island in 2006.
    Debate over which candidates deserve support from DU members occurs frequently.

    State Forums
    DU also provides specific forums for each state, where statewide issues are addressed by State residents and those with an interest in state specific issues such as primaries, gubenatorial races and the like.

    Notable members
    Several notable figures have posted in the forums at some point. Among those who have been verified as not being hoaxes are:

    Ben Burch, noted sexworkers’ rights activist;
    Wes Clark, Jr., the son of Wesley Clark;
    John Conyers, member of the House of Representatives from Michigan;
    Elizabeth Edwards, the wife of John Edwards;
    Christopher Heinz, a son of Teresa Heinz Kerry;
    Larry C. Johnson, a former CIA agent;
    William Rivers Pitt, liberal activist and author;
    David L. Wolper, noted filmmaker.

    Owners
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    Criticism
    Democratic Underground has been criticized for censorship directed against both the political left and the right. From the left, critics have alleged that administrators and moderators unfairly ban (“tombstone”) or censor posters who consider themselves to be to the political left of John Kerry, the 2004 Democratic nominee for the US presidency, and claim that DU is not truly liberal or progressive, but rather centrist, and adheres too strongly to the politics of the centrist Democratic Leadership Council (DLC). However, forum administrators and virtually all users support same-sex marriage, abortion rights and universal healthcare, which would put them squarely to the left of the DLC. Additionally, Joseph Lieberman, a hallmark of the DLC, is routinely attacked by users and administrators, which would seem to question the supposed DLC-leaning nature of the forums. One group of these critics were affiliated with the People for Change forums founded by Howard Dean supporters who felt alienated from Democratic Underground during the contentious primary season, and many of them had been banned or were later banned from the Democratic Underground forums. Other DU members claim that the moderators of the Israel-Palestinian forums enforce an anti-Palestinian bias.

    The administrators have directed the moderators to remove any attempts by members to discuss the site on the site and this is routinely done, occasionally resulting in the banning of members. Controversy has also arisen over allegations that the owners of Democratic Underground often favor their largest cash contributors during debates in the message forums. Critics point to the dominance of several member block constituencies that appear to wield undue influence on the direction DU’s moderators take in resolving member disputes.

    Other critics, including supporters of right-wing politics, charge that there is irony in claiming to stand for progressive and liberal ideals while enforcing arbitrary limitations on ideological diversity and freedom of speech.

    Citing unusual comments
    Discussions at DU sometimes lead to surprising contributions and unusual comments. One example of this was the dialog about the 2004 tsunami disaster, in which a few posts explored the possibility of “earthquake weapons”. The mere occurrence of the posts was reported by The New York Times and Fox News. The DU administrators deleted these posts and the threads were locked. They officially disavowed what they called “kooky tsunami conspiracy theories”. They added, “One wonders why the author [of the Times article] did not spend five minutes over at Free Republic and instead write an article about how conservatives think the tsunami was some sort of retribution from God, or how Muslims deserved it.”

  6. Manuel A. Tellechea says:

    The 10 Worst Quotes From The Democratic Underground For 2003
    by John Hawkins

    10) “A war of real information and real issues alone is doomed to fail. The Texas Fascist Party carries elections by drawing the hordes of stupid white men who are itching to ‘get even’ for decades of imagined slights. Arguing issues with these people is pointless.

    These people are not interested in issues, social justice, or even the fact that the US government will go bankrupt in a decade. All they want is to get back at welfare mothers, blacks, Arabs, immigrants, liberals, feminists, and intellectuals for shrinking their paychecks and threatening their masculinity. They are a nation of psychopaths created and sustained by right-wing hatred and are utterly beyond the limits of reason.

    The way to approach this vital segment of the electorate is not with issues but rather with propaganda. Speak to their hatred and direct it not towards the goals of the Texas Fascist Party but rather against them. Make them hate not liberals for raising taxes but rather offshoring that deprives them of their jobs. Make them hate big government which takes from hard working people such as themselves and gives it to the rich. Chanelling hatred, not addressing issues, is the challenge for resistance propagandists.” — Resistance Is Futile

    9) “Doesn’t a part of you wish that Queasy and Duh-day were alive?

    I’ll admit they’re scum and rightfully so, but anything that lands as even more humiliation on W’s grotesque shrivelled face is that much the better.

    It’s sad, really, that as despicable as they are, Saddam’s family seems to be the lesser of two evils when you compare them to the wretched little b*stard* occupying the White House and destroying America in the process…” — thermodynamic

    8) “I’m assuming (Michael Kelly’s) family won’t be reading this, but frankly, I’m gratified to learn that he paid the ultimate price for his sins of warmongering. This guy was scum. My first thoughts on seeing the thread were that I hoped it was that scum Post warmongering writer. My second thought was that it was a late April Fool’s joke. But no false sadness from me, only happiness that someone as mean and vicious as Mike Kelly got what was coming. As for all the posts about “coming by his views honestly” and “not speaking ill of the dead”, congratulations on taking the high road guys, but *ssholes like Kelly have to die sometime, and I prefer it is as a direct result of their sins. But what do I know, I’m happy that Reagan has Alzheimers and that * has access to pretzels. I wish death on my enemies, and these guys are enemies.” — jackswift on the death of Michael Kelly in Iraq

    7) “well…I guess I’m “supposed” to feel good about (Saddam being captured) Because he is a “brutal dictator” who “killed thousands of his own people.”

    But he was also a guy who posed no threat to us. And a guy who managed to keep a hostile area of the world relatively sedate (albeith through brutal tactics). And a guy who was a secular muslim leader instead of a hardcore fundamentalist.

    But I think in cold, crass political terms. I think it’s good for Bush so I think it’s bad for me. So I’m not happy, and I don’t care if it’s politically incorrect to say so.” — Magic Rat

    6) “…We know the recall’s about getting a Repub Gov. in office in order to make California easier to steal, or make the 2004 Election at least close ENOUGH to steal our precious Electoral votes. We know it has nothing to do with Gray Davis being crummy, really.

    …I think Rove’s got something particularly nasty up his sleeve this time that will change Arnold’s fortunes dramatically. I mean, he’s about to subject himself and Maria to more salient stories about what he calls “getting my helmet polished.” This could be humiliating to him, even before he loses. But what if he “knew” the fix was in?

    …My tinfoil hat theory is this:

    ROVE/BUSH/CHENEY ARE GOING TO INSTIGATE SOME MIHOP (made it happen on purpose) TERROR ATTACK, BIO ATTACK IN THE US, MAYBE CALIFORNIA, WHEREBY CALIFORNIANS WILL BE CLAMORING FOR A “STRONG” GOVERNOR TO PROTECT US! THEY CAN FINISH THE JOB ENRON STARTED, AND GET A REPUBLICAN GOVERNOR TO HAND THEM THE STATE IN 2004.” — CaptainMidnight

    5) “The capture of Saddam is all fine and good, but does how does this help someone facing a bleak Christmas because they lost their job? How does this help someone with an illness who just lost their insurance coverage? How does this help someone who’s underemployed, working several jobs and struggling to pay the mortgage? It just don’t make me any money.” — bushwentawol

    4) “..I expect that the A**HOLES and Sons of B****ES at http://www.rightwingnews.com will try to smear us first with stupid EDITED POSTS then insist that the feds arrest all of us as traitors. Typical of a Nazi group. Typical of low-life Fascist and Racist Pigs. They will try to scare us off. These people fear free speech because it tears their mask off. I have ONE MESSAGE for them…

    Well, you ba****ds, bring it on. I ain’t afraid of your f***in jails. Bring it on, you worthless bunches of s**t! You saltless wastes of human skin!

    Turn me in! Have ME arrested! Go ahead, you idiots! Bug my telephones! Follow me! Spy on me! Track me down through the internet! VIOLATE my constitutional rights! I hate this stupid oil-war fever! NO WAR for BIG OIL AND SUVs! NO WAR! The ROTUS SUCKS! ARREST ME for giving that chimpanzee the “finger!!” THE ROTUS SUCKS!

    And so does his useless, worthless,politically motivated war! And so do YOU, you products of a bowel movement! You are a worthless bunch of morons who want to feed us all to the cannons while you (chickenhawks ) sit next to your swimming pools! Have ME arrested for SPEAKING OUT! Bring it on! Turn ME in as a traitor to your Joe McCarthy Homeland Security, you goose-stepping, “HEIL HITLER” fools!

    I hereby challenge you!

    I GUARANTEE that you a**holes will regret the day you were born if you mess with this black woman.

    Steal and PRINT THIS POST, if you dare!

    (Forgive me Lord–this really made me mad!)” — brensgrrl

    3) “When the 2nd plane hit the WTC I remember thinking……OMG, he’s got his war now. Then, the next day or the day after that, when the roar of “war with Iraq and Afganistan” really got going I couldn’t help but think “well Bush II get’s to finish Daddy’s work now”. As for when the plane hit the Pentagon and the other plane went down in that field in Penn I screamed at the TV, “Get the WH, for God’s sake you missed the WH.” I invented some cuss words on that one. There were times before 9/11 as well as in the days to follow that the boy king mentioned Saddam “tried to kill my Dad” and couldn’t help but scream at the TV each time, “Well, give him a medal for effort anyway.” — LiberalLibra

    2) “What we MUST realize in order to win – Americans are stupid and uninformed. This is very important because in order to win we must understand the way the average American thinks. I’m afraid WE have nothing in common with them.

    I came to the two following conclusions when I saw the large number of people who voted for Bush back in 2000.

    #1 – I would dare to assume that most of us here are in the upper 1%-20% of the population intelligence-wise. We must come to the realization that the majority of the population is in the lower 80% to 99% percent of the bell-curve. WE are not the norm. The Republicans understand that the average American is not very bright. They cater and pander to the masses. The Democratic Party tries to appeal to the population about “issues” that these people just don’t understand.

    I’ve heard it said that the reason that Clinton’s sex scandal resonated so strongly among “the people” was because it was a scandal that the average American understood. The average person can’t understand a financial scandal.

    In addition, people of average or lower intelligence tend to not be as logical or reasoned as those of higher intelligence – they deal with emotion. Therefore they are more likely to get riled up about someone burning a flag rather than a illogical tax cut.

    #2 – The majority of people do not read the newspaper OR listen to the news, CNN, etc. Therefore -they get their news from the Tonight Show, Letterman, Oprah and Saturday Night Live. Or, they get their news from talking to their co-workers at the water cooler.

    Also, for the few people who DO listen to the news – who do they hear it from? Fox News and Bill O’Reilly are the most popular. Most newspapers and media outlets are owned by Republicans.

    THIS is what we are fighting against people. In order to win we will need to start pandering to the masses.” — Janekat

    1) “I realize that not every GI Joe was 100peeercent behind Prseeedent Booosh going into this war; but I do know that that is what an overwhelming number of them and their famlies screamed in the face of protesters who were trying to protect these kids. Well, there is more than one way to be “dead” for your country. They are not only not accompishing squat in Iraq, they are doing crap nothing for the safety, defense of the US of A over there directly. But “indirectly” they are doing a lot.

    The only way to get rid of this slime bag WASP-Mafia, oil barron ridden cartel of a government, this assault on Americans and anything one could laughingly call “a democracy”, relies heavily on what a sh*t hole Iraq turns into. They need to die so that we can be free. Soldiers usually did that directly–i.e., fight those invading and harming a country. This time they need to die in defense of a lie from a lying adminstration to show these ignorant, dumb Americans that Bush is incompetent. They need to die so that Americans get rid of this deadly scum. It is obscene, Barbie Bush, how other sons (of much nobler blood) have to die to save us from your Rosemary’s Baby spawn and his ungodly cohorts.” — Starpass

    ——————————————————————————–

  7. balzac says:

    That’s nothing compared to the crap that appears on Reich-wing websites.

    Also, keep in mind, it may be Reich-wing trolls, or just a few bad assholes – er apples.

  8. MMM says:

    Hey,

    I understand your frustration. It kind of reminds me of my time in Israel . (22 days)I’m a former State Rep and DU member. I was sent to Israel/West Bank/Gaza along with 2 State Sen’s, Another Rep, and 2 ranking staff members to State officials. It was June of 2000-before some of the fighting began but I could feel the tension rise. We were funded by ACYPL.

    We spent 11 days with our Israeli- Government guide. He was excellent and loved to eat… therefore he knew the best places. Wow! Was that stuff good.! I made one embarrasing mistake by ordering a cheesburger at a nice resturant in Tel Aviv NOT KOSHER! Nonetheless, our giude took us through….Jerico, The Dead Sea, Jerusalem, Galileah(sp?) the Golan Heights ect. We also were given a VIP lunch with varius members of the Knesset. (All of whom spoke their minds about the Palestinian “problem”) For all their time, I am thankful.

    Then we were handed over…

    Out of the 6 of them, all but one Palestinian had been in Israeli jails. They’re my age therefore had grown up during the Intifada. They were children throwing stones. One of them spent 6 years before they broke him. I saw the old jail cells, now turned into a youth-recreation center. But they kept some of the old cement cell-blocks.Attached to the wall there was a heavy chain thing. It was too high for the boys to sit, and too low to stand. Sometimes the boys endured this for days,

    The Palestinians too took us all over Israel and made sure we got in sites we hadn’t seen. They also bashfully asked if we needed to take Sunday off. (Their day is Friday, I’m sure you know)

    Anyway, the point is that the Palestinian or even the Muslim population in general deserve a little more respect then they are getting. Not because they were “nice” to me, but because they are fellow human beings and deserve to be treated as such.

    Sorry about the long borind crap. I should have just told you that I personally see nothing wrong with your interaction with others on DU. All it takes is a pissed of moderater and you are GONE! It hapenned to me. I had been there since May 2001 (nearly the beginning of DU- it was Jan of that year) SEVERAL times I had been asked to moderate !!! Oh the irony! 🙂

    Gotta Go
    Thanks for your ear
    MM

  9. Manuel A. Tellechea says:

    Balzac:

    I would have supposed that open antagonists would be welcome on ideologically-slanted blogs if only to stimulate discussion and prevent them from becoming echo chambers.

    Are there right-wing blogs associated with the Republican Party which practice censorship of content as the Democratic Underground does?

  10. Manuel A. Tellechea says:

    MM:

    You should have agreed to become a moderator: yours would have been a bulwark of sanity in a booby-trapped no-man’s-land of intellectual dishonesty.

  11. Is it just me, or has Larry King had like 5 heart attacks and 5 divorces. I guess that’d be a broken heart for each.

  12. alex says:

    You have a lot of company in your concerns about the Democratic Underground. This week, they are banning anyone mentioning impeachment or suggesting we cut war funding. Somehow, they don’t seem to be operating on Democratic values. It is definitely run by a very conservative crowd that is out of touch with Democratic voters.

    Check out progrssiveindependent.com. PI is a site that supports free speech.

  13. Josh says:

    IT GOES ALLOT FURTHER THAN THAT!

    They are trying to figure out what people “think” then bannig them based on the strangest of dishonest criteria.

    Democratic Underground recently did a COVERT operation (11/30/06) on its own membership trying to figure out who is a holocaust denier and who is not.

    They posted a poll that asks if you believe a) the Holocaust happened, b) it happened but you do not know if all the figures/deaths/numbers reported is accurate, or c) you do not believe it happened.

    If you answer B or C they SUSPEND your account and you receive an insulting message that you are a “Holocaust sympathizer” and they do not want to “be associated with individuals who express such views.”

    Of note is that answering B, which is a legitimate honest answer for the millions who know nothing of the Holocaust or the details, lands you in their Holocaust denier camp. Many people do not know how many people died in the holocaust – maybe DU needs to remember the world does not revolve around their view of the world. That DU would do such a sinister thing to its own membership in an attempt to cleanse it of people whom they “think” deny the holocaust is beyond belief for a site exposing democratic party ideals.

    OF course if you answer C, that is beyond the pale of reason. But if an honest guy answers B, that he knows it happened, but does not know the details of the event…..THEY CALL YOU A HOLOCAUST DENIER.

    Someone needs to send a wake up call to Democratic Underground. It start’s with “Innocent until proven Guilty” and ends with the Constitution of the United States of America.

  14. jagrmeister says:

    DU is run by fundamentally dishonest people.

  15. NVMojo says:

    Wow, I’m glad I found this commentary on DU! I’m proud to say I just got banned after several years and I have no intention of asking to come back like they stated when I was notified of the ban. I guess if I beg and cool off, I can come back. I requested my last donation back but no response! 😉

    MM, I remember you. What a shame. I’ve been frustrated for some time at the suppression of thought over there. Glad to hear I wasn’t the only one.

  16. NVMojo says:

    Forgot to add that I think I was banned for linking to some weird comments by someone who attended the Duke extravaganza. Apparently, it is a sin at DU for letting people know what other nutt jobs are saying. I was called an anti-Semite by Cali and some other DUer when I never said anything but showed a link to an editorial that was.

    At any rate, I feel cleansed to be banned and even better to know I’m among a chosen number!

  17. Ting says:

    Unbelievable, I am another person who was a member of democratic underground for years and I was banned outright without a single warning. They delete any posts they don’t like and DONT send you any private messages or email so you don’t
    a) know if you post anything that offends them, it just dissappears
    b) know why they banned you when suddenly you can’t log in.

    I am as left wing as they come but I think even slight disagreement (on OPINIONS of news items) means they will ban you. They are exactly like the people they claim to be against.

  18. SteveM says:

    Perhaps this is the best forum for finding out why DU has a separate category for guns. I was under the impression that 2A was a CIVIL RIGHT as it appears in the original Bill of Rights, and mentions within its short text “the right of…” Why do discussions over gun issues appear in the gungeon and not in the civil rights forum? I have also noticed a marked tendency for my calls for those supporting the Democratic presidential aspirants to discuss their respective candidates’ gun policies, to be ignored. (My calls are usually posted in the campaigns forum, but no response seems forthcoming.) Is there a general culture of excluding exchanges on this topic? (Note: I don’t accuse DU of cutting off dialogue, but am curious why such a major site ignores gun discussions — unless in the gungeon.

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  20. ellen says:

    Ting:
    Your post described my experience exactly. I had only made a few comments, and suddenly I’m gone, no explanation why.
    I know a lot of people there are idiots and I know the Moderator, Skinner, aka last name Allen, is a control freak, so I should just forget the f**k about it.
    But as Balzac said at the outset:
    “I don’t like to give up when I know they’re full of crap and I’m right.”

    Anyway, I have since learned that we who have been banned, constitute quite a club. Now, I’m glad to be a member.

    regards,
    ellen

  21. Theta says:

    DU and Skinner did the same to me after I questioned mods who were allowing a pretty ruthless clique of hostile gay men call me and other black females on the board, “nigger”. Skinner sent me an email basically agreeing the term was OK with him and daring me to do something about it. I told him, “Tombstone me and send me my donation back.” Skinner balked at returning the cash until my attorney stepped into it. That check hit my mailbox faster than a pigeon flyover.

    It’s turned into a den of imbeciles. Worse than high school, with all the same faces and cliques. Skinner is enabling the entire thing. They’ve recently added an “unrecommend” feature that appears to be designed to heighten drama and controversy at the site, which of course will drive up hit numbers. It will also drive away the intelligent founding members of DU and leave Skinner with a fanbase of screaming n00bs under the age of 25, which is what the site is rapidly turning into. Thing is, once he pisses THAT contingency off, they’ll haXX his website and leave it in ruins. Karma, I say. Proud to have left DU. I tombstoned myself and only look back to see what latest train wrecks have started there.

    An embarrassment to Democrats.

  22. nobluedogs says:

    Are there other websites almost as big as DU around?

  23. gusandra says:

    Gusandra is long gone from DU; suspended without explanation; no reply to my questions about how to get reinstated.
    I have since registered under another name, but now realize that no stories regarding Israel/Palestine are allowed on “Breaking News,” and any comment critical of Israel gets quickly deleted.
    Please let me know if there are any alternative sites.

    • Marjee says:

      I am as surprised as any one as to why I got revoked from DU. I never post outlandish stuff. But I did critize Obmaa. I think he needs to be at times. I posted that morning just answering to another post and when I went back in the afternoon I was revoked. I emailed the owners and they would not even answer. If this is the way they are not even telling you what you did wrong and you don’t know, then I don’t want to go back. After all I can post in more sensible websites which have more mature posters. Any of the articles they post that are informative and not kid stuff are repost from sites, like Alternet and Salon which I have over three times the number of likes than posts.

      • Wanda Leave says:

        Criticizing our Dear Leader or even calling him Barry is enough to get you banned. Are these people fake liberals or is this what liberalism has become?

  24. Abel Postman says:

    Me2,
    as soon as my donation cleared!

    Smells like a Nixon thing to me.

  25. Wanda Leave says:

    I have been kicked off of DU and had my privileges revoked at least 15 times. (I have a VPN, so I can always re-register under a different identity.) I am not right-wing extremist. On the contrary, I support Occupy Wall Street. My comments were never abusive or personal. Nevertheless, I have never posted more than a dozen times under any identity without being banned.

    The so-called liberals on DU have no respect for free speech, which is supposed to be a core liberal value.

  26. Nathan Gant says:

    I think they had been getting more desperate for money, and who knows what lengths Skinner and Co. are willing to go to keep their DU server up and running. Philosophically, it’s a dinosaur now, extinct. No way I’ll go there anymore.

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  30. Gigi says:

    Got banned yesterday as I said that JFK was a war criminal

    • Gus Linton says:

      Sadly, even the internet cannot yet guarantee a democratic dialogue. Maybe it should be called “Democratic Underworld.”

      On Tue, Jan 8, 2013 at 7:44 AM, Balzacs Analysis wrote:

      > ** > Gigi commented: “Got banned yesterday as I said that JFK was a war > criminal”

    • Nathan Gant says:

      I bailed out of DU a year or so ago, see my last post on this thread. It doesn’t merit my participation. Natures abhors a vacuum and there’s plenty of places more open and more free than DU. I think I was banned from DU because I suggested that one of the Apollo moon missions was a staged event.

      Don’t waste your precious time posting about how bad DU really is. You preach to the converted.

      As I stated before, DU is a dinosaur, already on the way out. No use kicking a dead horse. Let it rot and move away from that stinking carcass!

      • Gus Linton says:

        Amen! I was kicked off 2 or 3 times– I don’t remember. The first time was for saying that the last space shuttle explosion was no big deal. The second and third times were for being critical of Israel. I have not visited the site in 3 or 4 years. Who needs it!

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  32. Bruce Alan says:

    Imagine me, so liberal on Facebook that I’ve had personal friends unfriend me, getting banned on the “Democratic” Undergound after but a single reply re: being a traumatic brain injury survivor myself and suggesting that George Zimmerman may have been dazed from having been struck on the head by Trayvon Martin, making him decide to fire his one shot. (Who, I asked, sets out to kill someone by a) calling the police and asking them to meet him at the site where he intends to kill his victim; b) delaying using his gun in a struggle which Zimmerman could have ended immediately and c) firing a single shot at Martin instead of emptying his gun into him.) Bunch of fucking fascists there at the DU, and pardon my openness. It’s just so nice to express myself away from that gamgs stench.

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  36. Jon says:

    I got censored banned for calling Obama a corporate cock sucker for passing the bailout and the NDAA for its indefinite detention provisions. They’re about as democratic as the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea.

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  44. m l kovalik says:

    This is all fascinating. I’ve been banned, without explanation, from Thom Hartmann’s site. Many of my blogs, one in particular which was over 6 mos old and still active, were deleted. Why? because I’d been doggedly critical of the TH site for giving a platform for a black supremacist who’d been violating nearly every rule of the TH site such as grossly insulting and even physically threatening other posters, including myself. I’d also been very harsh- but w/in the rules- in my criticism of TH’s support for HRC.**********I’d suspected that TH had a privileged clique of posters, as some have described is the case at DU, who also got away despicable treatment of posters with whom they disagreed including insults, nasty ad homs, and “dogpiling”.**********I’d long felt that there was rather a 7th grade “mean girls” sort of vibe over there, and I got the impression that the “administrators” not only overlooked that, they endorsed that.**********When was I banned? Just within the last 10 days, just as low and behold, TH now links to DU, and I’d written a blog about my take on that development, which was, not surprisingly, unfavorable.*********sigh, it IS a conspiracy.

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