Since journalism, for the most part, is no longer being practiced in mainstream news, it is more important than ever that you hold the skills to learn the truth about what’s going on. Facts are powerful things when deciding in whom to place your trust, especially in the increasingly important upcoming fall election cycle.
We have tried, with the launch of our sister site, WatchdogCentral, to put the tools you need in your hands so you may find the answers you seek in a time efficient and effortless manner. Please use the site often and tell your friends about it as well. Truth is the only clear path to breaking the hold corruption has over our government.
As promised we are going to help you learn how to research a candidate, an office holder, an organization. With Watchdog Central, it is easy. I will give you a couple scenarios to get you used to using the site.
Let’s start with the new kid, Scott Brown.
Log on to www.watchdogcentral.org. You’ll see we have broken the info links down into categories. The categories are People, Groups, Government, Connections, Documents, and Videos. Also note we have the Dog House where we will be highlighting a ne’er-do-well every day, Who to Tell, and most importantly The Forum. More on that later.
For this first one, click on People, scroll down and click VoteSmart, enter Scott Brown for name (right side). Up will pop bios, recent news, voting record, finances, issue positions, etc.. I highly recommend RIGHT CLICKING results to open in a new window, so you can go back and forth without loosing your place. All right, but who is he connected with? Close the VoteSmart page. Click Connections there on left side of the WatchdogCentral page. Go to Muckety and type in Scott P Brown or Scott Brown. This map is pretty clean, but to investigate further (always interesting), look under the map at the list of names and place your cursor over each one. Notice the links for that name show up in a grey box? To check those out further, you merely have to click on the name you highlighted or click the box on the map with the name in it – either way. Close out Muckety. Back on Watchdog Central click Government, scroll down to CampaignMoney.com and click. On that site, click name in the right hand column, then enter Brown. Scroll results- all names are clickable. A nosey person could spend hours on this, particularly when looking at who’s giving money to the PACs involved. Mainly, just look over the names to see if there’s anything particularly interesting or a name you did not expect to find.
Ok, let’s do someone now with more, ahm, background shall we say. Click Government and scroll about halfway down to Maplight.org. Under Legislators, find Nancy Pelosi. View tabbed data. It’s evident lawyers, unions and medical interests love her, which you can plainly see under the first two tabs. Notice, once again, the groups are clickable if desired to learn more in general about them. Notice, for example, when HR800 (card check) came up for a vote in the house, she took union contributions and voted yes. Also, HR2634 (Jubilee Act) sponsored by Maxine Waters to redistribute American wealth globally was supported by Pelosi and praised with contributions from unions. The list goes on. Check out the Geography tab. Notice 87% of her campaign contributions came from OUTSIDE her district, the top five zip codes of which are DC area codes. Does that tell you just who she’s working for? Go back to WatchdogCentral.org and go down to Progressive Punch. Put in her name and you’ll see her lifetime score and liberal rank on issues. Once again, results are clickable. Lowest on her list to support is farmers (of course), and then thankfully prisoners and foreigners. Now back to WatchdogCentral and click OpenCongress, then the Representatives Tab, Pelosi. Here you find the bills she has sponsored and co-sponsored. Interestingly enough, the first bill on the list is one I never heard of from September 2009. HR3649, a private bill (meaning what, we can’t know what it’s about?) detailed only as “providing for the relief of Maria Carmen Castro Ramirez and J. Refugio Carreno Rojas.” No other information was provided other than it was sent to committee. That’s unacceptable- our government should have to tell us more about what they are doing. That item should be looked into further. Now back to WatchdogCentral, click on Connections (left side of page) and then NNDB, enter Nancy Pelosi at top, click search. This will bring up salient facts on her, including details of political family upbringing, her estimated net worth and personal information. At the bottom of the page note “create a map starting with Nancy Pelosi”. Click that. I see nothing there of note, but you can expand the map points by clicking them to learn more about each one. Using the links on our site, you can find much more information if desired, but in the interest of time and task at hand, let’s move on.
Let’s do a foundation next. Let’s choose the Tides Foundation. So on the WatchdogCentral site, choose Connections, click ActivistCash, on Activist Groups, select Tides Center. Here you will see an overview of their purpose in life. Go back to WatchdogCentral Connections page, click Undue Influence, use toggle to locate Tides Center/Tides Foundation. Here you can see a little history, how they get their money and where it goes (totals on graph), who’s on their board, the link to their website, etc. All right, now back to WatchdogCentral, and still on the Connections page, scroll up to DiscoverTheNetworks, and enter in Tides Foundation. Here you will see in detail who they are connected to, including George Soros, ACLU, ACORN, World Wildlife Fun, and on and on and on. You can also see their tax filings by going back to WatchdogCentral, to Groups and then to Guidestar.org. At the toggle bar select Non-Profit, enter Tides Foundation. This will bring you up a list, the first of which is the correct one. Click that to get to the tabbed information. (you may have to register to view some of the info, but it’s easy and free) Click on IRS forms and there you can view some of their filings. Back to site, click Government, and click Lobbying Disclosures. On left side of screen under Public Disclosure Search, click the first option, Lobbying Disclosure Filing Search. In the new window, on the first toggle bar line where it says “Search Field” toggle to “Client Name” and enter Tides in the adjacent box and hit “Search” at bottom of page. There you will find 37 entries on two pages of lobbying disclosures which are clickable for details. Interesting!
I think maybe you get the idea now of how easy it is to find out information you should definitely know, but that no one is telling you. If you have any questions please contact me by simply clicking the “contact us” button on the home page of WatchdogCentral. I will be happy to help where I can.
The most important part of the site is the forum, in my view. Here you can log on (it’s free of course) and let everyone know what you found out. That’s how we will succeed in sharing info. If you’re on twitter, put the info in the forum and then tweet it so we all know about it.
By all of us working together to do the job the media is not doing, we can illustrate, even to doubters, the ways in which our government is steering far off course, how corrupt our elected officials and candidates are or (in a very few cases) how they are not.
Going forward, please let me know by comment here or webmail from WatchdogCentral ways we can improve the site, ways we can make it easier for you to look things up, or what we can better explain about using it.
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