Monday, August 06, 2007

Chet Zarko, a regular commeter here is really a paid Republican operative

On Saturday in White Lake, Joe NOllenberg had his first encouter with Chet Zarko. Chet is a paid Republican consultant, apparently working for Joe Knollenberg. Chet had his video camera with him on Sunday and really wanted to know about the the giant head of Joe NOllenberg. Chet also worked on the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative petition campaign and which was actually successful, mostly due to the fact that petition gatherers were lying to petiton signers about what they were signing and the confusing name of the campaign, which actually was successful in denying the state from using race as a factor in college admissions and state employment. So, here is the video Chet shot of Joe NOllenberg chasing Joe down the road after the GOP picnic in White Lake on Saturday.


Chet said...


"Commeter" in the title and something else is misspelled. No biggie but you might want to change it - at least in the title.

Yes, as my website openly admits, I sometimes get paid to do work for political clients (I have a few other non-political clients too, but mostly political), many of whom are Republicans (mostly). I make no effort to hide that. Zarko Research and Consulting is also a freelance publishing business (I was a freelance investigative writer prior to 2004, including a piece in the Wall St. Journal and Michigan Bar Journal). The rewards of publishing are most often personal and sometimes much more long-term commercially - I do engage in "investigative blogging" as a separate "volunteer" activity but compatible element to my business. Is it inconceivable to you that even Republicans might do things they believe in occasionally for free, or that anyone might get paid for doing things they believe in? It's great to be able to do both in both spheres of my life.

It's ironic that you object to my paid status in the industry but can't fathom I might have personal political interests just like you might. But I make no effort to hide any of this - my life is an open book on my website. In the past, I have worked for Joe's son, but I do not now nor have ever worked for Joe --- but it wouldn't matter whether I did or didn't, or do. Issues are issues regardless of that, although I agree that associations are a fair question to ask either side. You have asked the question to a number of people on Joe's side and team, and raised the issue of who's paid by whom, so it's definitely fair for those of us disagreeing with you to ask the same questions you ask about Joe and his affiliates. Bruce Fealk and his (or affiliate) funded friend who won't even say his name, have yet to give anyone a straight answer on that.

As to MCRI, it is one of my proudest accomplishments. I'd never run from it. I genuinely believe that MCRI has helped ALL people in Michigan begin a very long process of both healing (to get over race we must genuinely stop keeping racial scorecards and fostering group-identity) and as a policy direction. Before MCRI, universities could "skim off the top" without any real effort toward helping failing schools. Preferences were a costless way and non-serious way for Universities to make their campuses LOOK more diverse without fixing the underlying social conditions (86% of preferences pre-MCRI went to affluent minorities from the same Bloomfield Hills or Grosse Point schools as attended by affluent whites (even Professor Robert Sedler, a defender of diversity, admitted the effects I claim, but believed "diversity" outweighed that, not social justice). Socio-economic alternatives and focused outreach on failing schools (which have a racial element to them, but include students of ALL colors) - the natural outcome of MCRI - are already being realized as alternatives. Although this may only replace 75% of the effect of preferences - its a higher quality and broader diversity - and it involves keeping our eye on the ball instead of distracted by the empty notion of diversity. Joe Yes-ennberg joined with 58% of Michiganders on this issue.

As to signature-gathering, if there was fraud, I challenge you to file civil or criminal litigation. There wasn't any, which is why BAMN never filed such litigation. The "fraud" allegation is based on the claim that we didn't say we were "banning affirmative action" but said we were banning "preferential treatment" (we genuinely believe that, and its a matter of legitimate difference of opinion so it can't be fraud, unless you emaciate the First Amendment). Even the Michigan Civil Rights Commission flip-flopped to AGREE WITH US AFTER THE ELECTION, because by agreeing with us it limits the scope and number of programs MCRI actually banned (protecting the likes of genuine all-inclusive outreach, or socio-economic programs). So that argument is gone with the advent of time and the recognition by the more rational opposition that our moderately stated position is preferable to their original straw-man version of our position.

matthew5043to48 said...

just curious, what race are you Chet?

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