MoveOn.org, the left-wing extremists who bashed the commander of American forces in Iraq as a traitor, should get out of the political kitchen. The George Soros-funded hitmen can't stand even a bit of heat from Mom-and-Pop retailers who tried selling T-shirts and mugs on the Internet critical of the "General Betray Us" smear ads against Gen. David Petraeus.
I heard from one of the independent T-shirt sellers targeted by MoveOn.org last week. The seller is a lifelong Democrat and member of the military. Incensed by the attack on Gen. Petraeus, the retailer opened up a shop at online store CafePress. The homemade designs at the PoliStew Cafe (www.cafepress.com/polistew) were stark and simple: "Move Away from Move On!" "MoveOn.org NoFriend to Dems." "General Petraeus has done more for this country than MoveOn.org."
For daring to raise a voice and raise some money for the troops (all proceeds from the sale of his items go to the National Military Family Association charity), this T-shirt seller earned the wrath of MoveOn.org's lawyers. MoveOn.org chief operating officer Carrie Olson brought down the sledgehammer. She sent a cease-and-desist letter to CafePress demanding that PoliStew Cafe's items and other anti-MoveOn.org merchandise be removed from the store.
Olson warned: "We have been alerted to an entire page of items on your website that infringes on our registered trademark, and we request that you remove all items immediately, and ask the poster to refrain from shipping any items purchased on this webpage. We also request that you give us contact information for the company / person who posted the items. This content has certainly NOT been authorized by anyone at MoveOn.org, nor anyone affiliated with MoveOn."
Acceptable speech to MoveOn.org: Likening President Bush to Adolf Hitler, as they did in 2004.
Unacceptable speech: Little old mugs and hoodie sweatshirts gently satirizing the thin-skinned, left-wing mafia.
The pretextual copyright infringement claims are downright laughable. This isn't about protecting MoveOn.org's property rights. It's about shutting up citizens who don't have the deep pockets to defend themselves against frivolous claims by bullies in progressive clothing. Sane liberals should be ashamed at such free speech-squelching efforts. As Los Angeles Times blogger Jon Healey, the only other mainstream journalist to cover the crackdown, notes: