Updated February 2nd, 2010.
In relation to O'Keefe's arrest, Big Government has been all over defending their prodigal son. This time, the article, penned by an anonymous source, stressed that he wasn't really wiretapping anything and that O'Keefe scored some victories against the media because they had to retract some statements and that all that is left of O'Keefe's wrongdoing is entering a federal building under false pretenses, which may come with jail time and a fine, but is not a felony. According to the article, "the federal government and its officers do not like to be trifled with, and the ability to bring punishment to US citizens for minor offenses isn’t limited to smoking a joint without the benefit of having a judge as a blood relative." I am not sure of the reference, but it sounds as if they want O'Keefe to get a slap on the wrist for his illegal activities, but then they look to ACORN and that is a completely different story. According to O'Keefe, he doesn't really think that they broke any laws and that it is "sort of a misunderstanding." I believe there is a word for people who don't believe in reality - delusional.
In the article, a correlation is made between O'Keefe, who entered a federal building under false pretenses to try to gain access to the telephone closet, and ACORN, which had "secret shoppers" enter the Department of Social Services in Missouri "to determine the availability of voter registration services, signs, and the readiness of the staff to offer voter registration services." The author questions as to whether ACORN's actions violated the law as well. While the actions may be similar (entering a building pretending to be someone else), the intent is completely different. O'Keefe was malicious and mischievous while ACORN sought the readiness of social services. Regardless, O'Keefe broke the law.
"Whatever you call it, the double standard is exposed," writes the author. "In coming weeks, I expect to see O’Keefe exonerated with a slap on the wrist, but the public will remember only the accusations of wiretapping. So congratulations, media. You can unfurl that banner that says: Mission Accomplished." According to a New York Times report, "the four men, two of whom were dressed as telephone repairmen, were charged with entering a federal property on false pretenses with the purpose of committing a felony. The crime charged is itself a felony that carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison." It's nice to see that the right-wing believe a felony is punishable by a slap on the wrist...
If you recall O'Keefe's initial ACORN videotapes, the public only remembers the accusations of ACORN assisting a pimp run a brothel of underage girls, even though ACORN was not found guilty of any criminal charges. Congress had also written a Bill of Attainder against ACORN, which was struck down in the courts (a slap of the wrist?) and I believe the right-wing media and tea party people unfurled their "Mission Accomplished" banner.