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Internet Snitch Brigade disabled, but…Updated

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By Michelle Malkin  •  August 17, 2009 02:05 PM

So, it looks like the Internet Snitch Brigade has closed up shop — and you can no longer flag yourself at flag@whitehouse.gov.

But the health care czar’s office (background here) and Obama Chicago crony Valerie Jarrett’s staff (background here) are hard at work pumping out O-care propaganda — and still collecting e-mail addresses — at the government-funded website “Reality Check.”

The White House spammers haven’t been thrown under the bus. They’re just taking a potty break.

***

Well, well, well

After insisting no one was receiving unsolicited e-mails from the White House, officials reversed their story Monday night and blamed outside political groups for the unwanted messages from the tech-savvy operation.

White House online director Macon Phillips said in a blog posting that independent groups—he didn’t name them—had signed-up their members to receive regular updates about Obama’s projects, priorities and speeches.

The White House had consistently denied that anyone who hadn’t sought the e-mails had received them.

“It has come to our attention that some people may have been subscribed to our e-mail lists without their knowledge—likely as a result of efforts by outside groups of all political stripes—and we regret any inconvenience caused by receiving an unexpected message,” Phillips wrote.

“We’re certainly not interested in anyone receiving e-mails from the White House who don’t want them. That’s one reason why we have never—and will never—add names from a commercial or political list to the White House list,” he wrote.

The quasi-apology came hours after the top Republican on the House’s oversight committee, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., asked the White House about its ambitious e-mail plan, which included a message from top political adviser David Axelrod urging support for a health care overhaul.

…The White House turned to its blog to respond broadly to its critics—without mentioning Issa by name.

“An ironic development is that the launch of an online program meant to provide facts about health insurance reform has itself become the target of fear-mongering and online rumors that are the tactics of choice for the defenders of the status quo,” Phillips wrote.

The White House blog post is here.

Rather than shut down the entire fiasco, they are expanding it:

Suggesting New Topics for Us to Address Through the Reality Check Site

The Reality Check website exists to inform public debate about health insurance reform – not stifle it. As the President said, “We are bound to disagree, but let’s disagree over issues that are real.” To that end, we’ve seen incredible response from website visitors who are using the tools provided on the site to share videos and other content with friends and family.

To better understand what new misinformation is bubbling up online or in other venues, we want your suggestions about topics to address through the Reality Check site. To consolidate the process, the email address set up last week for this same purpose is now closed and all feedback should be sent through: http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/contact

Moe Lane: Stop blaming the third-party advocacy organizations.

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