Update on the “Obama gave away free food and beer in Berlin” smear

I’ve had a few email exchanges with Just Say No Deal‘s selected-not-elected leader Diane Mantouvalos regarding my post debunking the rumor that the Barack Obama campaign gave away free beer and food to lure people to his Berlin speech. She claimed there were PUMAs on the ground there who witnessed the giveaways (these guys?) and made reference to one who’s allegedly an “MFA student (expat),” but didn’t forward me any personal accounts or links.  She claimed it may have been reported in one of their Facebook groups, but I searched all of the groups listed at the JSND site and came up with nothing. 

She also initially claimed it was reported in German media, but only pointed me to this “roundup” post at The Moderate Voice and this Deutsche Well article where there were no mentions of free beer or food.

She sent me some other things, too (links to Townhall and Newsbusters—yeah, I know), but there was nothing there as well (the Townhall column merely noted that “blogs were all abuzz with reports ...”).

The last email Mantouvalos sent me regarding this topic contained the following excerpts with highlighted text:

The Guardian:
Obama Deploys Cunning “Decemberists” Trick Again
Apparently, this kind of

ingenious mind-control trick was too brilliant for the Obama campaign to use just once



This was posted by one of the members of the band Reamonn:

Well I just played the show in Berlin before the speech from Barack Obama and I have to say I am wasted, the whole event was exciting, intense, fantastic and personal! I think I have spent more energy on Emotion today than anything else. The show was ok the focus was obviously on Barack Obama and none of us in the band tried to hard to alter that, we enjoyed getting out of studio for a day and being on stage at such an event.

I have been at thousands of summer festivals, (which was the nearest description to the event today) and it always seemed so natural the masses of people moving around enjoying the music and the surroundings. The mixture of people, hip hoppers, rockers, Goths, poppers all converging on one place to listen to their favourite bands, drink and party all day and night for the weekend! We all did it, it made sense, it was self-discovery and musical heaven!

Make sure you read the Guardian diary entry Diane referenced.  Either she didn’t realize it was obvious satire (which would be really, really sad) or she was hoping I wouldn’t read the whole thing.  And the quote from Reamonn?  She provided no attribution, so I went looking for it myself.  I could only find it in one place…the forums at Sean Hannity’s web site.

I rest my case.

p.s. Diane also said that her “peeps on the ground” in Berlin (these guys?) are looking into how many people really attended the speech.  Hey, if anyone knows anything about low and/or exaggerated turnouts, it’s PUMAs, so at least she’s got some experts on the case.

Posted by Kevin K. on 07/31/08 at 09:20 AM • Permalink

Categories: PoliticsBarack ObamaElection '08PUMAsSkull Hampers

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I’m amused by the “proof” - thanks for sharing the results of the investigation. Just uploaded our 360 panorama shots of the event - still no free beer signs.

The PUMAs and McSame are running remarkably parallel campaigns—attempting to peddle easily discredited lies because they got nothing else. Their parallel tracks aren’t surprising when one considers that the PUMAs are a GOP ratfucking operation or willing dupes of same. Great detective work, K.

PS: Audrey—very cool Berlin pix!

Given the humorlessness of the PUMA crowd, it wouldn’t surprise me that the Guardian piece went right past her.

Oh, and when I tried to go to the Hannity site, I got a message saying that the site administrator had banned my IP address.  Apparently they don’t want anyone with book larnin’ talking to the rubes.

Maybe she’s thinking of the Evangelical conference in Egypt, where God miraculously provided 2,400 KFC dinners to the hungry attendees.  (They bought the first 3,500.  Maybe they were expecting a miracle when they set the thing up.)

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