The Georgia video connection between Mitt Romney and Chip Rogers

Mitt Romney and Chip Rogers have something in common.

Both politicians — one an unsuccessful presidential nominee, the other an undone state Senate majority leader — have been stung by lengthy, Internet-posted video clips of scenes you were never meant to see.

Their connection is more than coincidence. Both videos were the work products of a small coterie of young, tech-savvy Georgia Democrats out to change the way this state does politics.

By now, you know that James Earl Carter IV, grandson of the former president, helped bring to light that secret iPhone recording of Romney at a high-end Florida dinner party where the candidate declared that 47 percent of American voters were bought and paid for with federal government checks.

What you probably don’t know is that, weeks later, Carter served as a consultant to the progressive group known as Better Georgia for another project: The insertion of a camera into an October seminar at the state Capitol, arranged by Rogers, on the alleged United Nations conspiracy known as Agenda 21.

As it turned out, this was as simple as walking through the door.

Better Georgia volunteer Seth Clark set up his camera in the open. For 52 minutes, until he was tossed out by staffers, Clark recorded Rogers and several other GOP state senators as they were told that rezoning, efforts to limit suburban sprawl and regional coordination are all part of a secret effort to deprive Americans of their property rights.

Agenda 21 Full Video from Bryan Long on Vimeo.

“Our own governments are doing this. Our own local city councils and county commissions — they’re doing this,” said discussion leader Field Searcy, an ousted member of the Georgia Tea Party.

Searcy declared Agenda 21 has been pushed through a form of brainwashing called “the Delphi technique,” with the goal of leading “a targeted group of people to a pre-determined outcome.”

Rogers won re-election on Nov. 6. The Agenda 21 video was posted Monday by Better Georgia. Three days later, Rogers abandoned his bid to hold onto his position as majority leader of the Republican caucus.

The Cherokee County lawmaker’s problems ran far deeper than any video, but surely he wasn’t helped by the nationwide head-shaking the clip produced. (In his local paper, Rogers said he was merely helping out a group of constituents.)

If Democrats are a vanquished army, then Better Georgia and its associates are the guerrilla force that has been left behind to harass Republicans — operating out of a Midtown Atlanta office and beyond the reach of what’s left of the state Democratic Party.

“I don’t talk to the Democratic Party. I don’t talk to (Democratic Chairman) Mike Berlon. There’s no coordination. Like none. Zero,” said Bryan Long, Better Georgia’s executive director. Full disclosure: A dozen years ago, when Long was an Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporter, I was — very briefly — his supervisor at our Cobb County bureau.

For the past year, Long and one other paid staffer, Political Director Don Weigel, have been supported financially by about 500 donors. A few are Republicans, Long said, but Better Georgia’s most prominent supporter is former Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes.

The group is patterned after similar rear-guard actions in Colorado and Wisconsin. “It’s essentially a year-round political campaign. We don’t stop the day after the election,” Long said. An emphasis is placed on technology, social media and research.

“We’re modernizing politics in Georgia. A lot of people who are in politics right now are using Old World political techniques,” Long said. His group has placed an emphasis on recording Republican public officials as they speak their private minds.

The aggressive tactic may make many of you uncomfortable. Long said it is essential if voters are to realize that many Republican elected officials have “values that most Georgians don’t believe and don’t accept.”

While videos are flashy, Better Georgia also opposed the constitutional amendment on charter schools that passed this month. On Election Day, Better Georgia produced an email from state Rep. Tommy Benton of Jefferson, a member of the House Republican leadership, who told a constituent that ballot wording for the measure was “kept vague” so that “it will more easily pass.”

Most everyone knows that nothing on the Internet really goes away. But it helps to know where and how it might be buried. “Really, it’s the same skills that were used by researchers before the Internet. You have to have lots of patience and know where to look,” said James Carter, whose cousin Jason Carter is a Democratic state senator from Decatur.

“I grew up as computers were growing up. I played computer games as a kid, and my computer was never quite good enough for the games that I wanted,” James Carter said. “When the Internet came along, that was the natural next step.”

But not everything can be found on the Internet. Last month, Carter tracked down a cassette tape recording of a 30-year-old interview of Lee Atwater, the legendary South Carolina strategist whose bare-knuckled but cagey tactics helped win the South for Republicans.

On the tape, Atwater bluntly explains how messaging to white Southerners had shifted from racial epithets in the 1950s to coded “abstractions” of the 1980s.

Both Atwater and the interviewer, political scientist Alexander Lamis, are long dead. Carter obtained the audio from Lamis’ widow and turned it over to The Nation, a liberal magazine, which posted it — one day after the Agenda 21 video hit.

It may be time for Republicans to be more careful about what they say, and to whom.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on Facebook.

161 comments Add your comment

double

November 17th, 2012
9:21 am

You never know when brother is watching or iistening.

Agenda 21 Goobers Mind Controlled!

November 17th, 2012
9:42 am

I’m not sure the analogy here of calling citizens engaged for better government a “guerrilla force” is appropriate. More appropriate is calling the GOP-Tea Party shills that have taken over the state “Gorillas” but perhaps that is an unfair comparison for the primates, as Yerkes researchers over at Emory can attest.

These GOP-TP missing links have evolved slightly beyond the fundamental evolutionary drives of more sex and more food, but not by much. These grifters have added money, power, and TV screen time, re-election, and lobbyist’s attentions, to their motivations.

Working for Georgians is not part of the GOP Deal mindset, except for the 1%, or the corporate handlers that run the GOP. It’s long overdue that we all take a little time to look under the rugs of everything Deal, Gambling Chip, and all their ilk do, say, and where they go. Just how much golf did we pay for with the GOP meeting at Little Ocmulgee State Park the other day, and how many taxpayer funded aircraft blew money getting these gold ol’ [white] boys down there.? Did they all pay the $5 park pass they make us pay?

This loyal-to-Georgia Cracker will be sending some green to Better Georgia before these Tea PArty GOP parasites coagulate into something even more toxic for our state. Better government needs aggressive watchdogs, and the old guard press ain’t getting the job done–too many apps with 140 character fluff pieces, not real reportage like Better Georgia has done–this is national news that these nut jobs are suffering mind control! Thanks to Mr. Galloway for letting us know about this–score another one for real journalism.

Karl Marx

November 17th, 2012
9:44 am

“Messaging to white Southerners had shifted from racial epithets in the 1950s to coded “abstractions” of the 1980s.”

I remind everyone that in the 1950 these were Democrats. Now what ” Coded abstractions” are used today by Democrats. Does Saul Alinski ring any bells?

I thought so.

Bob

November 17th, 2012
9:54 am

They aren’t doing anything new or innovative. Both sides have been do these things for a decade.

Dumb and Dumber

November 17th, 2012
10:11 am

Join the Georgia GOP and get a free tin-foil hat and decoder ring.

Loy

November 17th, 2012
10:29 am

Enter your comments here

Look before I leap...

November 17th, 2012
10:44 am

Mind-boggling that Chip Rogers could get elected dog-catcher, much less state senator.
But it is a total mind-(insert vulgar term for carnal relations) that he could ascend to majority leader.

Isis5761

November 17th, 2012
10:48 am

There’s too much mental instability in our country today. Much of it is
old fashioned racism; a mental illness. It is scary. So much of what is happening is a precursor to what occurred in Nazi Germany. I can’t take a ship to another planet. This one has serious people problems not related to any political party. There’s too many of us who are sick. I’m more concerned with the racism cliff than the fiscal cliff.

Karl Marx

November 17th, 2012
11:12 am

Isis is that anythink like ” All White People are going to Hell” oh was that camera on well… I was just joking.. wink wink….

td

November 17th, 2012
11:15 am

Racism, racism, racism is nothing more then a scare tactic term used by socialist to keep the uninformed whites and conservative African Americans on the government communist plantation.

If backing all African Americans and making sure they all got a fair shake in society was the real goal of these “leadership of the black community” then people like Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and Rev Lowery would be down in south Florida right now marching in the streets for a true and accurate re count for Allan West.

GaBlue

November 17th, 2012
11:17 am

SUNSHINE is a beautiful thing! Our “representatives” have been plotting, scheming, and double-DEALing behind closed doors for far too long. LET THAT LIGHT SHINE ON IN!

Amen!

td

November 17th, 2012
11:20 am

sis5761

November 17th, 2012
10:48 am

“So much of what is happening is a precursor to what occurred in Nazi Germany.”

And if you had any type of intellectual honesty then you would say that what is happening now with the Democratic party with all the wealth envy and social justice movement is exactly what happened in Russia and China prior to the communist taking over the countries. BTW: True look at history will show that the communist killed way more of its citizens then Germany ever thought of killing.

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
11:36 am

td

Heard any new Dick Morrris or Karl Rove predictions lately?

How did that oversampling thing work out for you?

Look before I leap...

November 17th, 2012
11:37 am

I gotta tell you td, it is always amusing to see you confuse syllogistic fallacy with inductive logical reasoning.

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
11:38 am

td

What was the general take on the election from the Rush Limbaugh listening groupies alumni club?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
11:40 am

td

You don’t seem to come to Bookman’s as much since you ran that big mouth pre election.

What happened?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
11:44 am

td

It was funny to read you talking of how others would be on the AJC blogs posting under new names after Romney won (damn you were brainwashed). You are scared to come to Winfield and Bookman’s or you are the one with new name(s).

toodles you toy poodle

GaBlue

November 17th, 2012
11:48 am

By td’s logic, we should not only accept social injustice, but be grateful for it, because… a hundred years ago, starving peasants decided to be ungrateful to their dripping-in-diamonds Czar* for the privilege of starving to death, and yielded to another type of murderous tyranny. Sure, td. I’ll base all my decisions on that from now on.
/sarc

(*actual Czar, not standard nickname for a long clumsy title of a department manager used in the US government)

Kris

November 17th, 2012
12:01 pm

Looks like Ga.politics as usual, SHADY DEALS, Some Dirty DEALs, and crooked deals.
Don’t forget the lobbyist in the short skirt/cigar and wad of cash..

Same games different Ass Holes…oops I mean face ( if you can tell the difference.

However They have new Tin Foil hats. Save that Aluminum foil after cooking your thanksgiving turkey, you can recycle it in to tin foil hats.

Pete

November 17th, 2012
12:41 pm

td, nobody much pays attention to you anymore. You are so far right wing you may even be out of the mainstream of many our nutty GA GOP polticians.
It is scary the people continue voting these crazies into office. Just because somebody has an R by his name doesn’t make him qualified to represent us. He’s got to have some sense and at least be rational. Surely the people of Cherokee County have more judgement than to keep re-electing Rogers to office, especially since he had a reasonable, viable Republican candidate running against him this time.
Our state is in a whole lot of trouble, and we will pay the price when businesses and corporations stop wanting to locate here and even start leaving because of our extreme right wing politicians. Where is the state Chamber of Commerce? They should take a stand against some of these idiots. After all, the Chamber is a big part of the GOP base and has some influence.

lala libertarian

November 17th, 2012
12:59 pm

So, all this stuff done by Georgia’s Republican led state government are really just part of Obama’s master plan? Amazing. And, Dick Morris – “we’ve cut carbon emissions, not by any government program.” Uh, what about required mileage standards for all autos sold in the US (as one example)? “My wife and I outline this in our book…” Look at me! Buy my book!

td

November 17th, 2012
1:32 pm

Pete

November 17th, 2012
12:41 pm

“td, nobody much pays attention to you anymore.”

Really, did you happen to read the half dozen post after the last one I made?

So far Deal is doing the right thing in saying no to Obamacare and no to increasing Medicaid in the state so my beliefs are doing fine. The moochers of society (Democrats) will either have to stay and work or go to moocher states to get more entitlements. The more moochers that leave the less the tax burden and the more corporations will move here.

I hope all you Obama voters are enjoying your jobs being cut to part time status or just totally being cut. Remember you voted for the situation you are in.

CC

November 17th, 2012
1:33 pm

Kris:

How’s Big Bird today?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
1:36 pm

crying conservative

How is the loss treating you today?

How did that oversampling theory workout for you and td?

td

November 17th, 2012
1:54 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
1:36 pm

What did Republicans really lose? Republicans maintain control of the HOR’s. Republicans now have control of 30 governors (first time ever) and have total control of both chambers in 30 state and partial control in another 6 states. Districts have been gerrymandered in such a way that the Republicans will not lose control in the next ten years and the current Representatives know that if they give into Obama and his socialist agenda then they will have primary opposition in two years.

In 2014, there will be 7 Senators running for re election in states where Romney won and there will be zero Republicans running for re election in states that Obama won.

In the meantime, a Democrat will be President during a double dip recession and he will not be able to blame Bush this time.

The only negative is if one of the 5 SCOTUS justices happens to die during the next four years.

Old Hippie

November 17th, 2012
2:07 pm

td, just a suggestion – before you post here again, please learn how to write, spell and edit. Your ignorance is showing.

After you learn to do those things, actually read a history book (and not one by Newt).

td

November 17th, 2012
2:17 pm

Old Hippie

November 17th, 2012
2:07 pm

How about you worry about where you are going to get your next welfare check from and not worry about writing styles. BTW: Where is my history incorrect?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:22 pm

Let’s see

You lost the election you said Romney would win

The Republicans didn’t take the Senate you claimed they would

Republicans lost seats in the House.

Republicans are the ones losing the demographic trends and inter-fighting within their ranks to see what can be done.

Republicans will be losing the immigration amnesty issue and giving the President a deal

Republicans will be caving and a deal will be made on taxes and spending

Yes you lost and yes your predictions and those predictions of those you follow suck.

You will be touting those same source next election. That is just how brainwashed and ignorant you have demonstrated yourself to be.

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:24 pm

td @ 2:17

How Christian of you.

Your Jesus is looking for LION Christians not people like you who are LYING Christians.

Be a man for a change.

clem

November 17th, 2012
2:33 pm

when bush won in 2004 by similar margins, he claimed a mandate….political capital and he was going to spend it. shoes on the other foot.

jay

November 17th, 2012
2:34 pm

Georgia – Atlanta = Utah, a state full of Bible thumping, gap tooth, inbreeding rednecks on welfare

sayitagain

November 17th, 2012
2:35 pm

Donating to Better GA now. Glad someone is “outing” the loonies in the GA legislature.

td

November 17th, 2012
2:40 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
2:24 pm

What in the heck are you talking about? What am I lying about? We lost the Presidential election. I, along with many other Republicans, misread the electorate. The truth is we all misread the intent of the moochers to keep their lazy days of doing nothing and having the government take care of them.

Where is the lying? You won but you are still angry because you really did not win a great deal.

td

November 17th, 2012
2:42 pm

clem

November 17th, 2012
2:33 pm

when bush won in 2004 by similar margins, he claimed a mandate….political capital and he was going to spend it. shoes on the other foot.

Can you name one thing Bush was able to accomplish during his second term domestically?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:45 pm

td

You bought the lies and told the lies. You are a brainwashed tool. Don’t feel bad, there are many others just like you.

$5.00 gas?

or was it $6

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:49 pm

td

How many states that said they wouldn’t be participating in the medicare portions of Obamacare have said otherwise this week?

jay

November 17th, 2012
2:49 pm

Rescums lost big time!!! As a matter of fact they were “Romneyed”, that means getting your butt kicked royally.

td

November 17th, 2012
2:51 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
2:45 pm

You mean the lies like if Republicans are put in office then grandma will be pushed off the cliff, social security will be taken away from the elderly, women will have to go back to getting clothes hanger abortions? Are those the lies you are talking bout?

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:51 pm

td

Were you able to get to the bottom of the oversampling of Democrats? You ate that up like a kid eating ice cream.

You said once that Romney was really up by 10% because of the intentional and incorrect assumptions by the pollsters.

:-)

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:52 pm

td

How are those Muslim and birther lies working?

The bright side, McConnell is now working to make Obama only a two termer. His one termer plan fell through.

td

November 17th, 2012
2:56 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
2:52 pm

Obama is a lame duck now and as long as the Dems do not control both houses in Congress then there is minimal damage he can do and he might as well hit the golf coarse for the next 4 years.

jay

November 17th, 2012
2:58 pm

Hey td aka “Tone Deaf”, how does that crow taste? I hope you like it because you got a whole boatload to eat…lol..braindead idiot..

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
2:58 pm

Call it what you want but the House is going to give him a deal on taxes, immigration and even said this week that there ins’t a thing they can do about Obamacare

Yeah boy, he wont be getting anything he wants

You fool, Romney is really up by 10% claimed td…….. what a dolt

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
3:00 pm

td is still surfing Dick Morris and Karl Rove site for the latest predictions

hahahahahahaha

:-)

td

November 17th, 2012
3:01 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
2:52 pm

td

“How are those Muslim and birther lies working?”

Where did I ever say he was a Muslim? I said he was a liberation theologists (socialist). As far as birther, all I ever said was he needed to show his birth certificate or should be taken off the ballot.

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
3:02 pm

td

Listen to Jindal from LA. He is basically telling sheep like you that the Republicans must change and need to stop crying about that Electoral College a$$ whuppen they took.

Newt basically said the same, Barbour as well………….. yet most of the right wing pundits and folks like yourself are wanting to triple down on stupidity

td

November 17th, 2012
3:07 pm

You don’t say

November 17th, 2012
2:58 pm

They are talking about the Romney plan now (cut deductions and not raise marginal rates). The only way marginal tax rates raise is for the Dems to walk away from the fiscal cliff and all all the taxes to be raised and all those cuts to be made.

Do the Dems do it?

jay

November 17th, 2012
3:08 pm

Romney wins, Romney wins, Romney wi…huh? I was dreaming? Are you serious? Yes TD aka total dipstick you were dreaming, time to face reality…

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
3:10 pm

td

spin all you like there will be small tax hikes and deductions changes

The Speaker has already told his party to get in line and man up.

You don't say

November 17th, 2012
3:12 pm

I bet if the Speaker gets too much flak from the rank and file, he will start crying

;-(