Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Blog Commissars

Last week, John Hawkins at Right Wing News compared Charles Johnson's methods to the way the ChiComs treated U.S. prisoners of war in Korea. I recently had an e-mail exchange with Kathy Shaidle about this stuff, and she told me about Ezra Levant's experience with the Canadian "human rights" tribunals.

What's bizarre is how some bloggers have decided that the best use of the medium is as an online Court of Inquisition, as I recently commented:

You seem to be making the same mistake other people have made, supposing that what you think I said is the same thing as what I said. You further seem to suppose that your accusatory method -- "This, That and The Other," as I've sometimes described this type of attack -- can result in a perfect distillation of my beliefs. Liberals have composed similar laundry-list indictments of Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin and Rush Limbaugh, for similar purposes. Lather, rinse, repeat.
By this method, you attempt to make yourself the arbiter of what is or is not to be admitted as evidence and then -- j'accuse! -- you declare that I be judged only on that evidence. And if I refuse to allow you to set the rules, you accuse me of not playing fair, despite the fact that I was minding my own business when you decided to arraign me in this manner, as if I were accused of some crime.
You see that you are arrogating to yourself a most frightening authority. I am not a candidate for public office, and it is profoundly strange to find myself the target of this sort of opposition research project.
Consider that I've been attacked like this since 2000, and was forbidden to respond while I was at the Washington Times. I quit the Times in January 2008, and nobody said anything about this until Charles Johnson targeted me on Sept. 12. So if it is to be demanded that I make a comprehensive declaration at this late date, there's a lot of catch-up for me to do, at a time when I've got no shortage of more useful work to do.
All things considered, some of this confusion is understandable. Your purpose in belaboring it is less understandable.
When I was at The Washington Times, I understood that the attacks by SPLC on me were actually aimed at my employer, and by extension at the conservative movement, the Republican Party, etc. And those attacks did not begin, as I've explained, until I published a May 2000 interview with Laird Wilcox, a critic of the SPLC.

Exactly why Patterico has recently taken an interest in me, however, I haven't the foggiest idea. (You might think he'd be busy enough with Roman Polanksi and Michelle "kittykat" Sullivan.) Maybe this is a lingering grudge from March, when I sided with Jeff Goldstein against Patterico:

As the incompetence and corruption of the Obama/Pelosi/Reid regime become increasingly evident, the Ordinary American seeks an alternative. The task of conservatives in this time of peril is to raise a banner around which the good and true will rally. We need a fighting creed, and courageous hearts with strong voices to shout it: WOLVERINES!
The Goldstein-Patterico debate was about Rush Limbaugh. The American people admire a fighter and as Wally Onakoya said of Limbaugh, "He is a man, you know."

Looking back over the past nine months, "Wolverines" conservatism -- especially the Tea Party movement -- has triumphed over Brooksian wussyism.
If we heed the voices of defeatism and despair, if we allow ourselves to be distracted by carping criticisms from The Dogs Who Bark While the Caravan Moves On, if we start endlessly second-guessing our gut instincts because we're afraid of offending the sensibilities of the editors at Newsweek -- well, that way lies disaster.
Disaster has been averted so far, but the barking continues. As Donald Douglas at American Power notes, I am in effect accused of wishing him out of existence. Instead, he's got over a million hits, and his traffic has roughly quadrupled in the past year. Gee, I wonder how that happened?

Coincidentally, it was a lawyer who asked the famous question, "And who is my neighbor?" Like the bloggers say, read the whole thing.

UPDATE: Speaking of Kathy Shaidle, never try the "cultural pride" defense with a Canadian. Thanks to "human rights," it is now illegal to have culture in Canada and, honestly, what do Canadians have to be proud of? Gordon Lightfoot? Neil Young?

For months now, I've been doing my best to get Kathy deported from Canada, the desolate arctic non-nation I call Un-America. She's a "known associate" of mine. That's got to be a serious human rights violation in Un-America.



  1. Actually, I think Patterico has done you a favor. I had seen the quote in question many times, but that was the first time I ever saw anyone link to the entire exchange.

    I would agree that, taken by itself, the quote seems pretty racist (or racial...or whatever) but I don't see how any reasonable (as in non-johnsonian) person could read all of your responses in that thread and still maintain that you're a racist.

    You may well have lost the battle only to win the war........

  2. "The American people admire a fighter and as Wally Onakoya said of Limbaugh, 'He is a man, you know.'"

    Except when it's time for Vietnam and his draft physical, in which case he has his private doctor attest that the pimple on his ass makes him 4-F.

    A man would have either shipped over or given the draft board the one-finger salute and an invitation to kiss said pimple.

  3. As Jeff Goldstein noted, Patterico fights like a liberal.

  4. She can stay at my house until she finds her new home in the States. I loves me some Kathy Shaidle.

  5. Rush. We can thank Canada for Rush. And for BTO. And my paternal grandfather, who had enough sense to leave PEI before Canada became independent and started getting all crazy.

  6. Well, there's always Neal Peart, Geddy Lee, and Alex Lifeson.

  7. Well, there's always hockey...and, especially, good old Canadian lads who thump the candy-asses of the American players. I've always marveled at what a limp-wristed bunch of flailing cream-puffs American athletes are - you ever see a decent baseball/basketball/football fight? The US of A has the ginchiest technology, that's for sure, but the nation, as a whole, has that hysterical, pants-wetting way of fighting common to those who constantly writes cheques with their mouths that their Big-Macified bodies cannot cash. It's kind of like how the Canadian JTF boys get called in when the mean work needs to be done.

    I am of the constant hope that, eventually, the innate toughness of the Canadian lad will finally make an impression on the embarrassingly knock-kneed pansy-slapping of our southern neighbour, but alas! it's been of no avail yet. However, hope does spring eternal.


  8. I went and checked out Patterico's post on you. Jeez Louise, you would think you were Jeff Goldstein and Radley Balko rolled into one big punching bag for Patterico. I do not think he likes you.

    Why does Patterico seems so intent to tell you your own intent? Patterico will use his slick prosecutorial powers to demonstrate you are in fact a racist. How Charles Johnson of him to do that? What is Patterico's motiviation for doing so? Is nk the new Kilgore Trout and daleyrocks the new Sharmutta?

  9. This exchange lifted from Patterico's Place is telling:

    "In any event, if we wish to examine whether Robert Stacy McCain (no relation) is an antisemite, or whether his article or e-mail was antisemitic, we really should look at the totality of the man and his writing… not just a single paragraph in a single monograph.

    “That’s just the f-ing way it is.”"

    – Dafydd ab Hugh

    "UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I agree entirely (and have said throughout this contretemps) that McCain should not be evaluated by one statement. However, I think McCain ought to be clear about whether he said it or not. As the updates to this post show, he has not been entirely clear about it — and is still muddying the waters to some degree." [but here is the rub, RSM is guilty until proven innocent (and Patterico gets to decide that as prosecutor, judge and jury) or until RSM prostates himself to Patterico's greater self appointed virtue]

  10. "You seem to be making the same mistake other people have made, supposing that what you think I said is the same thing as what I said."

    That's an unavoidable "mistake" for anyone who gives a damn one way or the other what you said, but who has to rely on secondary sources to get a clue as to what that might have been (which, due in large part to your exceptionally Clintonesque treatment of the question, includes everyone who hasn't seen the source material).

    Of course, the suppositions which various among the "mistaken ones" decide to adopt may be very different and some of the available suppositions will necessarily be incorrect. There, are, however, at three such suppositions which are reasonable:

    1) You're milking the controversy (a controversy which you've lovingly nursed along and occasionally shot full of B-Vitamins) for hits; or

    2) You realize that what you said would damage your credibility if you admitted to it, or

    3) Both.

    While I'm not with the crowd that leaps to conclusion #2, I have to admit that for me it's a tossup between #1 and #3 (I'd have naturally assumed #1 early on; #3 didn't really start seeming sensible until you went all William Jefferson Blythe on it).

  11. Let's distill the essense of the alleged comment to this: You are not (necessarily) racist for oppoing interracial marriage. Because that is what the alleged statement stood for.

    So when something along the lines of 70% of black women say they disapprove of black men marrying white women--are they racists? I do not think so, anymore than some secular Jewish family still not wanting their son to marry a shikse.

    So why is an alleged statement, that is racial in context but not overtly racist, made more than 10 years ago, even relevant? RSM is not nominated to the Supreme Court.

    This is what Jeff Goldstein has been warning about on the left. They target you. The CJs and Andrew Sullivans start pumping the BS, then others join in, and before you know it you are a white supremacist homophobe Christianist racist.

    This exchange with Patterico shows why it is always a bad idea to speak with the police and prosecutors when they suspect you of a crime.

  12. Hell of a quote:

    Any outspoken conservative will, at some point, be called a racist. The intent of liberals in accusing conservatives of racism is not to condemn perceived bad behavior, but to marginalize those who dissent from leftist orthodoxy. Nowadays the mere accusation of racism is an effective conviction, the person accused being presumed guilty until proven innocent. To employ the charge of racism in this reckless manner is irresponsible and unacceptable, and it has the counterproductive effect of encouraging true racism by generating apathy toward the existence thereof.

  13. Look on the bright side: at least you're still allowed to defend yourself in his comments section.

    Others of us are not so fortunate. Sometimes, Pat decrees that certain people be tried in absentia -- to save the tax payers money, you see.

    Listen: Frey is nothing if not ostentatiously sanctimonious. You are precisely right about his methods (he will set the terms, you will answer on his terms, and his readers, and the readers of his network of linkers, will act as jury) -- and one must ask why he felt the need to air this arraignment publicly.

    For all I know, you may very well be a racist. Then again, you're likely not, and at any rate, I'd want to be sure before I began pretending it was my job to publicly "investigate." But let's be frank: all this kind of show trial is intended to do is to demonstrate to the right kinds of people that Patrick Frey is NOT one of "your kind" -- and in fact, that aside from small differences in policy, he is really no different from all of them!

    -- You know, a good person who should be invited to the right kinds of parties as a kind of buttoned-down curio.

  14. Online holiday spending has reached nearly $16 billion, marking a 3 percent increase compared to the same time period last, according to the latest data from comScore. The most recent week ending December 6 reached 4.6 billion in holiday spending, heavier than any individual spending week in 2008 but still below two individual weeks in 2007.