Glenn Greenwald's daily fixation about the perils and abuses of executive power have always been widely supported and promoted by the Cato Institute, the libertarian "think tank" founded by the now infamous right-wing industrialists known now as simply "The Koch Brothers." Glenn's latest number one fan on Twitter is Cato's (and Reason Magazine's) Julian Sanchez (@normative). The two of them have recently been the Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb of the NSA/Snowden outrage machine, gleefully trading-off with and echoing each other's efforts to keep the topics of the NSA, Ed Snowden and Bradley Manning in the forefront of the media's attention span.  And the Kochs just couldn't be happier.

This paragraph will help you understand why:

From:  The Machine: A Field Guide to the Resurgent Right by Lee Fang

Perhaps the most insidious strategy of the Koch brothers has been their ability to co-opt social liberals. The Cato Institute is known for its promotion of gay marriage and support for immigrant rights. In fact, a small number of libertarian fronts that receive funding from Koch charitable foundations do not toe the orthodox conservative line when it comes to issues like evolution or even drug policy. But these otherwise laudable causes are mostly a ruse. While the Koch brothers fund seemingly reasonable social libertarians with one hand, they finance a set of vicious social conservatives with the other. Peggy Venable, a longtime Koch operative, helped mastermind the crusade to rewrite the history textbooks in Texas to promote antigay bigots and to censor references to immigrant civil rights leaders like Cesar Chavez.6 Americans for Prosperity spent considerable resources promoting Arizona State Sen. Russell Pearce and Colorado’s Tom Tancredo, two of the leading anti-immigrant politicians in America. Koch also gives heavily to antigay groups like the Heritage Foundation. In fact, Charles attends meetings of the Council for National Policy, the nation’s largest meeting group for far right social conservative donors, and in a speech posted on the group’s website, pledged an “alliance” with the social right to change American society. Essentially, Koch will fund both conservatives and liberals when it comes to social policy. Because for them, social initiatives are more often a Trojan horse for imposing their radical economic views.

[bold emphasis added]

Like most of the Right's calculated maneuverings, organizations like Cato are fond of any effort that attacks any institution of power which far right authoritarians like the Koch's don't now control. For decades, they have paid for an orchestrated effort to destroy the American people's respect for goverment, and thus, any authority that can pass social legislation aimed at greater wealth equality and social justice, which are both outcomes vehemently opposed by the Kochs and their plutocratic brethren. It is not an accident that Progressive civil libertarians and socially-regressive Ron and Rand Paul supporters have come together to noisily protest the evils of the "surveillance state," as Greenwald so lovingly refers to it. It's a strategy long in coming.

I urge you to read Lee Fang's book and understand just how systemic the plutocratic influence has become in America, and why it is leading to what George Packer calls "The Great Unwinding" of the American way of life. It is not that the strident voices like Glenn Greenwald's are not discussing matters important to liberals. They are. After all, Progressives—or at least, those claiming to be progressives—are his market and drive his income. But it is the way they are discussed that is working at cross-purposes with the larger goals of the American left. They rely on a ginned-up outrage directed mostly at mere tokens of authority, such as black Presidents like Barack Obama, and not at the true causes of our problems: the plutocratic elites like the Koch's who are only too happy to promote and pay for this distracting, hyperbolic antipathy toward elected representation and executive power. 

Does Glenn Greenwald openly work with The Cato Institute? No. At least not from any evidence I've seen.  But he has been paid to write for them in the past, and they eagerly stoke the outrage he so easily manifests with his daily writing. Outrage which an army of Julian Sanchez cohorts can get behind and push, helping to steer it in ways more directly in-line with Cato's ultimate goal of dismantling the Progressive agenda on behalf the Kochs and their many right wing friends in the energy, finance, cattle, and agricultural industries.

It is an informal convergence of interests that makes Greenwald their proverbial useful idiot who helps to drive the narratives that they want to see driven. Just as far and as fast as he can drive them.  And since he creates more disaffected progressives with every article he writes; people who often shriek that they are "done with voting","done with democrats," and "done with false hopes and promises," he is helping to drive the American Left right over a cliff and straight into the waiting arms of the quasi-fascist, quasi-theocratic plutocratic elites like the Koch family. The very forces of darkness who have spent at least 75 years trying to become the true fascist authoritarians that Greenwald professes to fear. Revealingly, he almost never actually writes about those fears, choosing instead to write passionately in favor of things like the Citizens United ruling on electioneering, which actually serve to stoke the causes of those fears. Handsomely.

If America, as we once knew it is to survive, the agenda of the Kochs and their elite partners must be stopped. But getting outraged at the latest Glenn Greenwald trope won't do that.  It will only add more fuel to the raging inferno of hate and disillusionment which will ultimately assists the ultra-far right with their ambition to seize total control of the United States. As articles like this demonstrate, they're already almost there. 

For better or worse, and regardless of their motivations or tactics, Greenwald and the Washington Post have helped to bring the NSA security debate to the front of the public discussion.  But now more mainstream journalists, advocates, and elected officials have to step-up and translate all this legitimate concern, and yes, even outrage into effective public policy prescription and legislation that can balance the security vs. liberty scale in a way that most Americans can support. That is an outcome that the Kochs are hoping Greenwald and friends will impede by promoting so much rage, distrust and rancor that only a dysfunctional national apathy remains. And again, we're nearly there.

I feel this entire NSA issue is far to complicated to be solved by any knee-jerk outrage about "civil liberties" and "respecting the fourth amendment."  It's just one more intricate problem that only responsible governance can address. A governance deriving its power from the consent of the governed. A governance with a real and potent authority that Libertarian industrialists, and the pseudo-Libertarian actors like Greenwald simply detest.

Update#1

Now that he's been shamefully "Pulitzer-recognized" for his famously shoddy work on the Snowden/NSA stories, Greenwald is less and less ashamed of demonstrating his frequent willingness to support the Koch cabal's transparent efforts to suck in the gullible on the left.  Here's the latest example: 
 


 

And not to be outdone, Glenn's frequent partner in these things, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has dropped any and all pretense of caring about any issue but  their hyperbolic hysteria over the "surveillance state." Here, we see their "senior activist" essentially providing an endorsement of the Tea Party because of the empty Liberty Now! rhetoric that EFF helped them refine over the past year.  They suggest not the slightest concern for the well tread fact that Koch/Cato and the Teaparty often use this simplistic civil liberties dogma in precisely the same way that conservatives have always used race*: to seduce voters motivated by narrowly focused, single issue, dogwhistle politics.
 


 

I will let Bob Cesca from the Daily Banter explain this farce to you:

"It’s difficult to find a more ridiculous whitewashing of the tea party outside of the tea party itself. The legacy of the founders? Wow. First of all, the tea party doesn’t even understand the actual Boston Tea Party, much less the intent of the founders. Yet the heretofore respected EFF has bedazzled the tea party with the gilded legacy of the almighty founders. As for the leaders the tea party has elected, is there one — just one — who’s not completely nuts or totally unqualified for the post?"

Here's Bob's entire post. Don't miss it ? Electronic Frontier Foundation Praises the Tea Party, FreedomWorks and Birther Larry Klayman

* Note: On using race and similarly incendiary issues to hang entire political strategies upon, Brian Beutler of the New Republic wrote a great paragraph today in his piece, The Right's Racial Blinders What really explains the politics of the Obama era.  The entire piece is excellent, but this is the money graf for my purposes:
 

See how it works?  The plutocracy will use race, civil liberties, environment, or any other issue they can that will—or might—lure gullible populations into their sphere of influence. They will achieve their selfish agenda by any means necessary.   But then, the same is largely  true of Greenwald. He hung his career on civil liberties, and always had libertarian leanings (to put it nicely) which never much cared for progressive politics or helping progressive causes.  As a result, ginning-up the importance of Koch projects, Ron Paul, Rand Paul, the Teaparty, or any other tool that supports or extends his hyperbolic surveillance state narrative seems a perfectly rational thing for him to do. 

But as more and more journalists and pundits discover him, post-Pulitzer, and finally-tune into his past and tactics, I wonder if he will be so cavalier about being this revealing of himself in the future. It was one thing when he was a nobody, and Tim Jacob Wise wrote a piece like this:

Of Broken Clocks, Presidential Candidates, and the Confusion of Certain White Liberals

But it will be quite another now that he's a Pulitzer Prize contributing author, Glenn Greenwald.

Stay tuned.

Update #2

A far more intellectual dissection of this very problem has just been published. I urge you to read: Cyberlibertarians’ Digital Deletion of the Left

Related

When computers are involved, otherwise brilliant leftists who carefully examine the political commitments of most everyone they side with suddenly throw their lot in with libertarians — even when those libertarians explicitly disavow Left principles in their work.

"Few people have done more in-depth research, reporting, and writing on the post-Obama conservative movement than Lee Fang. The Machine goes beyond the headlines and explores exactly how this ideological movement operates."
—Amanda Terkel, senior political reporter, The Huffington Post

After the 2008 and 2012 elections, we all thought the country was shifting toward liberal values. The right wing saw it too, so they warmed up their machine built over 30 years, stretching from Capitol Hill to local school boards. Think tanks and lobby houses, new media and old, consultants and old-time party hacks all fell into line to rev up The Machine against the newly-elected moderate Democrat named Barack Obama.

Yes, Hillary Clinton, there was and still is a vast right wing conspiracy. Luckily for us, Lee Fang has written the story of the conspiracy in the Clinton years and following right up to the 2012 election. Names, dates, and secret meetings are all in one compact book, where Lee's narrative proves what we all know: A small handful of billionaires and corporations drive politicians, the news, and day-to-day political discourse in this country.

 

And the graphic Greenwald wants you to look at is a fake — an altered version of a Think Progress graphic showing Norwegian anti-Muslim terrorist Anders Breivik’s citations of US bloggers in his “manifesto.” The altered graphic, to which they added my name in a very deceptive manner, with a bright green bar to make sure you didn’t miss it:

I said yesterday I was (mostly) staying out of this #Uniteblue crap from now on, but since this is an extension of something that I caused to happen, I need to comment. So I have.

Once again, the ever shape shifting UniteBlue project has taken my advice, and formed a Nonprofit. As usual, they have announced this with great fanfare, and also as usual, provided not a single really relevant detail. Since this "progressive" enterprise's website never publishes any comment but those which gush about it (but allow no criticisms whatever), I am forced to post my comment to them below:

Dear Greens,

Anyone can file a nonprofit corporation. What matters is the business relationship between @UniteBlue and your @140dev.@140elect companies.  

Obviously, you stated at the start you wanted to make money, so the Nonprofit will now serve as your marketing "front end" driving traffic and clients to your businesses. You can get away with that, but not without honestly and openly describing the relationships from the start so that "members" know what they are getting into.

Until you do, this is all fluff meant to make you look like a serious not-for-profit enterprise. Again, you've already stated elsewhere in your evolving history that you're not; you're in this to make money. 

Be honest with people, or they will eat you alive.

I know you are not likely to post this (as you haven't posted any others), so I will blog it on my own site, as I did with my last reply.

A lot of noise is filling the Twittersphere about the "UniteBlue" idea.  I've posed some questions, as have others, and @eileenLeft has alleged some skulduggery about @SayethSimon.  

As usual, #p2 trolls, whacks and  just people not particularly fair minded have jumped on any new criticism of anything they have decided to like as if someone just shot their pony through the nutsack.  Such people don't serve progressive interests well, in my view, but others find them interesting and entertaining, so in the name of diversity, I ignore most of their incessant blithering and bleating.  I am sure this post will be like chum in the water for the hatriots and acrimony trolls. But then, almost anything I say, write or tweet usually is. So there's that.

Anyway, as he should have, UniteBlue's founder Zach Green responded to some of this dust-up with some much needed clarification about UniteBlue. This was all good. Unfortunately, he also went on to mischaracterize some valid criticism, questions, and observations about connections to his past clients as  "smears." They were not. At least none that I saw were. If discussing your lack of apparent lack transparency, or some of your past commercial clients is "smearing" you, you're just in the wrong line of work.  I sincerely hope he will update his post and soften some of that criticism of his critics. That tone may play well to his membership faithful, but it won't to too many others, nor to future commercial or nonprofit clients. They can be very senstive about appearances.

 

What follows is my reply to Zach Green's  post. I don't know if he'll post it, but from what I've seen of his character thus far, I think that he will.

Update:  He never published this, nor did he publish the comments of most other critics. So net net, his post was a puff piece meant to bullshit everyone and make excuses for an unethical launch using other people's work. I was disappointed. I expected more. 

Note: there are a few grammatical edits and typo edits made here that were not in the original comment.


Zach, thank you for finally making a public statement about this. And FAQ was long overdue, in my view. I don’t assume you are speaking directly to me in your post, but as you touch on many things I did in our tweet exchange, let me respond as if you had.

As I tweeted to you the other day, respectful responses to criticism and questions only make you and your projects stronger. I am adamant about fairness, and if things said about you and/or UniteBlue (UB) are untrue, I’ll be the first to help set the record straight. I have before, and I will again.

As it stands now, this statement from you serves as a public record, and you have made numerous assertions that can and will be checked out by people much smarter than me.  I assume they will check-out as you have represented them. In the meantime, permit me a few responses and comments to your words. 

To begin with, regardless of how this all pans out, your rather cavalier response to questions  like “Are you making money?" read as if such questions are of trivial  consequence, a tone which just does not serve you well. If you were building a better word processor for progressives, no one would much care.  But the buzz you are generating (and nurturing) about UB is much more aspirational in tone.  

Both you and your more engaged members speak almost reverentially of  UB as a nascent "movement" with clear political goals, objectives, and implications for Progressives. Goals and objectives which you admitted to me are not all that clearly articulated, nor yet presented anywhere coherently. A marketing-oriented “About” document on your site is not the best way to describe a serious idea aimed at social change. In fact, this FAQ, written as a defensive instrument, is the clearest discussion of the questions and issues that your project presents which I, or anyone else I have spoken with has yet seen. 

When any commercial business aspires to be an instrument of social change, it gets into territory that it often didn’t initially prepare for. Only the naive or delusional would suggest that motives, money, credibility,  and veracity are unimportant to a fledgling political project of the sort that UB purports to become.  Not being prepared, nor having good answers for obvious questions can and has been a fatal mistake for many efforts of this sort.  Change.org and other success stories were armed and ready for such questions from their very first press release and yet even they still run afoul of many people who feel deceived by the shifting ground on which their business model was based. UB does not have their backstory, players, or resources. It has to be even more careful. 

Had it been me, I would have formed a non-profit, built a solid board of advisors, and fully disclosed that it had a favored-nations agreement with 140dev.com to use its technology. That’s just how it’s done in the major leagues, these days. Your project would then be at least partially accountable to people outside your immediate business interests.

So yes, UB should have been more careful about its launch posture, in my opinion, but what’s done is done—at least thus far. Even so, I think more discussion of what I see as unforced errors may be instructive here.  

You repeat again in your FAQ that your boilerplate “privacy” document has some particular illuminative value that shines some light on your veracity and credibility with respect to your downstream ambitions. It does not. You admit it was acquired from the web, yet when I showed you what was in it, you didn’t even know it permitted precisely the use of email addresses which  you implied that it did not. I asked you directly, not if you would ‘rent’ your email lists to anyone, but rather, whether you would send product or service mailings that were of interest to your clients (a very big distinction). 

As I noted in my tweets to you, your privacy  document clearly said you reserve the right to do just that. You have yet to clarify explicitly what you will and won’t do with your access to your members, either via the twitter API, or the emails and other information you are acquiring.  You need to do that, and be much less evasive about such questions in the future or they can come back to haunt you.

As for your overall operational model, I wish you had reached out to more of the Twitter community 8 months ago. As a long standing member of the #p2 community,  I have watched many ideas for community sites, filters and directories come and go. I have seen almost your exact model in several forms proposed, and expressed the same qualms about them that Karoli has in her blog post which I will cite here:

http://www.drumsnwhistles.com/2013/02/26/this-uniteblue-scuffle-is-twitters-fault-and-they-could-fix-it-if-they-felt-like-it/

Who is UniteBlue,  many have a right to ask, to rule on who is and isn’t a “top progressive?” By itself, the idea is offensive to many, but as Karoli implicitly suggests, you also take on the role of arbiter of who is not one, and even who is not a progressive at all.  It would probably take me about one day to embed a dozen or more conservative trolls into your “validated progressives list, and you would have absolutely no way to prevent it.  You’ve already found many already, but they were just fails in your software, and not the work of professional false flag operatives,or other kinds of black-op thugs, goons, spies and trolls.

Since you provide absolutely no insight into your magical process for verification, I can only assume you would be fully prepared to explain why it failed so miserably once I—or someone else—proved that it did. 

And what about your liability? What if one of your validated progressives turns out to be one of the many paid political operatives on the right that I, and my many Progressive friends have been battling with for years?  They would skillfully plant disinformation or outright lies into your streams and it would be a daily struggle to discover, stop, or counteract  them.  As it stands now, they still have to work pretty hard to run such propaganda operations.  Your “validated lists” would make it so simple, they’d take turns doing it daily. I haven’t checked, but I’d bet they already are. 

The @uniteblueLOL account shows they are already well aware of you, and I will bet real money that a lot of them are already busy creating clever ways to game you and your membership. It’s what they do, and it’s why such focused identity groups (and avatar campaigns) like UB have been rejected time and time again by many others.  It’s also why you will have a very hard time getting notable Progressives and celebrities to join you. They aren’t going to risk their cred by taking a flyer on yours, or your super-duper, deluxe progressive identification algorithms.

Now, as to your statements about @ConnectTheLeft and  @SayethSimon, they  are just not supported by any evidence, and are directly contradicted by her version of events; by several witnesses to CTL conference calls; by CTL team members, and by the massive public record called Topsy.com seaches.  

Clearly, someone is lying, and I don’t think it is EileenLeft—or you.  Eileen's well known passion, efforts, and trademarks for CTL would certainly seem to put the burden of evidence on Simon to show that it is she who is lying.  There are virtually no meaningful facts to be found in his “statement of truth”.  There are unsubstantiated claims; claims that seem to project everything Eileen’s team knew to be true about Simon, onto her.  The record indicates otherwise, as far as I’ve been able to tell.

Other people are at work debunking his missive (which I assume will soon be posted here), so I won’t steal their thunder, but when all the smoke dissipates, Simon says  little beyond providing a connnecttheleft.com receipt, which no one contests was his, a @connecttheleft Twitter account  receipt  and some assertions that team members will defend him (but he doesn’t name them). Perhaps he and Eileen should hash this out in a Google hangout to clear the air for good.We can all watch.

Simon’s posturing is not helped by the fact that I asked him several times in private if he did what Eileen had alleged. He took hours to not respond.   A simple "no" would have sufficed. Instead,  we got him claiming credit for something that thousands watched @eileenleft doing every day. His name has rarely if ever publicly came up in connection with CTL, beyond someone enthusiastically supporting it, as many did.

Eileen’s  story is that his only involvement was to rapidly squat on the connecttheleft.com URL, a fact he confirms in his letter, some fervent tweets, and a few drunken conference call rants about his legendary music industry accomplishments. I found this amusing, as to me, he claimed to have been an aspiring web designer. Music never came up. Ever. I don't know him well enough to know what is true and what isn't. But perhaps you do. 

Regardless, whatever Simon said to you about CTL’s origins is in no way an indictment of you or UB. What he allegedly did, if true, as I believe it is based on evidence I have seen is simply disgusting. But you may have felt everything he represented was true, and bear no blame for believing what he claimed was true. Does admitting that  muss UB’s hair a bit? Sure. But so what?  A worthy  project can overcome that. Just say you didn’t know, apologize for lending any credence to his smear, thank her for her contributions, and everyone moves on. 

Finally, having seen many posts and postures, I don’t think either I, nor anyone else has been engaged in “smearing” you or your efforts. They have asked questions, discussed issues, questioned assumptions, and reacted to your tweets and various revelations about a very popular progressive alleging harm to her. That’s just the price anyone pays for conducting their business in the social sphere. It can all be resolved civily and in good faith through public exchanges like these.

As I have said, I don’t agree that UB, as currently constructed, is a very good idea. But progressives often disagree with each other and I am certainly not going to expend any time or bullets attacking you or UB over a difference of opinion. It may well morph into something I could enthusiastically embrace. I’d welcome that. 

Regards,
Matt(a.k.a. Shoq)

Related

Yesterday afternoon, some #StopRush/#FlushRush folks got a fund raising drive going to help out Richard C. Myer's family, who were threatened with eviction after his tragically sudden passing last month from a massive heart attack. I asked my Twitter stream to get on board with the effort. The goal was $1200, so they'd have enough money to pay two months and keep the nasty landlord at bay until Richard's death benefits arrived. The response was just fantastic. 

From Cowoman's update:

So far we have raised $3125.84; I am so happy I could cry. I want to thank you all for giving me the opportunity to do something small that made my year start off with such fulfillment and joy. Seeing Candy's face when I hand her your generous gifts will be more reward than I can express.


From Richard's wife to #Stoprush volunteers

To Stoprush: 
You all wonderful people. Thank you from the bottom of me and Randy's hearts. I would love to join you all and keep Richard's web sites going.  I want to keep Richard's dreams alive. If you all need any help at all please contact me. I have a facebook page. 

Thank you all for saving me and my son's home. Richard was more then an activist. He was a wonderful husband, a great father, and my bestfriend. I will never in my life meet such a special man like him again, so please help me keep the the very thing he loved in life: the people he helped and loved—and his activist's work.

Thank you all so much. I will never forget such heros who saved me and my son's life.

Much love,

Candy myers

To all of you who responded, thank you so much for your generosity. Richard was a gift. He will be missed by so many.

-Shoq

Jo-Ann Shain is my first cousin. She and her partner Mary Jo Kennedy have played a historic role for the past 7 years. This @CNN re-run memorizalizes their long journey. Their fight has been part of an epic battle that will change the lives of so many.  Congratulations to them both. Thank you for your service, ladies. 

 

 

Source: Same-sex couple Jo-Ann Shain and Mary Jo Kennedy won the lottery to wed Sunday in New York.

Backstory

Related

 

 

A Cautionary Tale of Infiltration, Betrayal, and the Activist Community

by Melissa Brewer

I've been busy with worky stuff, so I didn't have time to blog Melissa's moving, informative, and maddening essay when it was first posted. I apologize to her for that. She wrote an important introduction and overview of the noisy Twitter conflagration that made her life a living hell, and has embroiled me and hundreds of other people for months. It is best read together with Matt Osborne's tidy little synopsis of this Ratfucking* of the stopRush effort and me.

Although they'd like everyone to think that what they did was just about me, what Heather E. Chase (@heatherEchase) and Imani Gandy (@angryblacklady) did had an impact on many people. Particularly affected by their selfish machinations were about 3000 #StopRush volunteers, but also several other women who have spent their lives fighting for women's rights. And their fight was much greater than building a small wiki project that died only a few months later when it's founder was able to leverage the attention she received into a paying contractor's job with a bona fide and well respected women's rights organization. Evidently, they made this acqui-hire before Chase and Gandy had admitted what they'd done to us. It might have made a difference in their decision.

Of course, many other people—even well branded bloggers—who never bothered to research any of the story before "defending their friends," were lured into that embarrassing trap based on their modest acquaintances, and these women’s shrieks of "conspiracy theory! conspiracy theory!"  They have been quiet lately, probably due to the fact that their friends, the  purported "victims," Chase and Gandy admitted doing exactly what we said they had done.

Melissa's story will explain a lot of things to you. I urge you to read it. Some highlights:

I’m writing this post today to tell you a story. It’s the story of a man who wanted to “infiltrate” a movement and manipulated many people so that he could “make his way” as the next Breitbart or James O’Keefe.

I felt good about my involvement in StopRush. I was true to the boycott, too. In fact, because of StopRush, I’ve learned how to vote with my wallet in a number of ways. I’m a conscientious consumer. I have StopRush to thank for that.

As depressing as it’s going to sound, this story is also about hypocrisy in its very core form. While #TeamUterati “worked” to further “women’s rights” and decry slutshaming on a public level, none of the “TeamUterati women seemed to think twice about aiding and abetting Jason Wade Taylor in his “war”. The women targeted in his ruse included… (emphasis mine).

If this story doesn't open your eyes to the dangers of bloggers acting as careerists, using any means necessary to promote themselves at the expense of other progressive causes and the broader public interest, nothing will.   

I'd like to be able to say Melissa's post has led to better relationships between like-minded people on Twitter, particularly those who are more than sick of the drama these people continue to flog every day. Unfortunately, all it's done is bring her more strident and vitriolic attacks from those who are now so thoroughly invested in all these manifestations of Internet Disinhibition run amok.

*A Note About The Term “Ratfucking.”

Chase and Gandy and their supporters lamely try to deflect from the selfishness of their deed by saying that Matt Osborne and I have claimed that what they did was "political."  Why? Because Osborne used the term "Ratfucker."  This is a typical Breitbartian trick where you try to obfuscate the guts of a story by picking off tiny tangents that you hope the gullible will be distracted by.  It was just more of the spinning and manipulation that these two cunning women have used since they first started denying that they did anything at all (most stridently argued to friends in private). They had been slowly backing away from their denials before finally admitting what they did—but only after we published hard evidence that proved it.  They excused it all with still more cover-ups, unsupported assertions about my "bullying and abusing women," and of course, their ongoing use of other people to mask their duplicity. Along the way, they shamelessly encouraged their vicious supporters to attack mine (ironically, often women themselves).  

But back to their tangent:  Not only did the term "Ratfucker" long ago escape its Watergate-era boundaries and come to mean any dirty trick done for any kind of gain, but even at face value, it was appropriate  Chase and Gandy were played by Jason Wade Taylor,  a con-man who absolutely had a political agenda and used their greed and epic ethical fails to assist him.  Their motives were never political, and no one ever said they were.

Rather, their motive was to raise funds to pay their salaries in a quick-and-dirty advocacy effort that designed to do just that. I know. I was there when it was formed. In those days, I spoke to Gandy nearly every day. Out of work, and out of money, her constant refrain (very closely paraphrased) was "I have just enough cushion to last until maybe October. I need to make this work or I will need to find a job."

Ratfucking me and StopRush, apparently, was part of "making this work."

Please read Melissa's story in its entirety. It's an important one with many lessons for social media activists.

Update No. 1 

The always dishonest and complicit @MiltShook (a blogger of such stature, he writes his own reviews on Amazon), who continues to deny—and conceal—his major role in this drama, has been spouting off on Twitter about how "Shoq wrote Melissa's piece." This is typical of Shook, who makes straw assertions like these about me almost every day since I eviscerated a truly ridiculous undocumented hit piece he wrote about me on behalf of Chase, Gandy, Jessica, Padilla, and Himself.. Shook postures that he wants all this to stop, while tweeting almost hourly about me. A few examples.  Had I written Melissa's essay (replete with tales of her rape and abuse), I would hardly have been as fuzzy about the perp's motives as she was. She gives them wiggle room. I don't. We already know and proved exactly what their motives were.

Related

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted on 9/29/2012

 "No facts?"  In Matt Osborne's "Twitter Brigade Burn Notice" post an update referred to here, Osborne included:

  • 80 factual points, including statements and assertions that people would testify to in court,
  • 32 exhibits  of material evidence, including emails, instant messages, tweets and deleted tweets.

Posted on 10/02/2012

Uh, people writing responsibly (and who have jobs) may require some time to  construct responses using those pesky things called "facts."  Oh, and it also took a week or so to scour this hit piece for the evidence of "bullying" he mentioned so often. I failed. So have others, apparently

Once upon a slime, Milt Shook wrote a 4000 word smoke screen.

In the image at the top of this page, the political blogger Milt Shook suggests that another blogger's detailed look at the possible origins and motives of an organized smear campaign about me reads like the gossip site "TMZ." You know, the sort of site where  allegations and ineuendo get made, but almost no hard facts are presented?  This post shall examine a 4000 word blog hit piece (that Shook claims isn't a  hit piece), where Shook appears to attack OsborneInk's post, but merely as a way of attacking me by-proxy. I think discerning readers will soon see that the gentleman doth protested—and projected— just a bit too much :)

Shook's screed seems to have had 4 objectives.  To 1) discredit Osborne, who unpacked a complex, nearly 2 month smear campaign against me that had been cleverly packaged as victims pushing back against "verbal abuse"; 2)  promote the meme that it was a consequence of my own behavior, as evidenced by rumors, gossip, and self-serving portrayals over the years by various trolls and detractors; 3) minimize and deflect from his own role in the events behind the smears, while simultaenously trying to distance himself from a drama in which he was both an actor and a screenwriter; and finally, 4) posture as a heroic truth teller, using almost no facts whatever so he could bask in the adulation of the people gleefully receptive to any new contribution to the smear campaign.

The fact that Shook would go to press with something this thinly documented, knowing Osborne was bringing out more of the story in series, makes Shook's speculations and assertions look almost like credibility suicide notes. His post mostly speaks for itself (poorly), but I will respond to some of its more reaching or specious sentences with something his post was recklessly short on: evidence. 

UPDATE: Since this post was written, @HeatherEChase admitted that almost everything said here, and in Matt Osborne's posts (with evidence) were completely true. Oopsy! Of course, she continues to manipulate, offering still new lies (without any evidence) to continue her cover-up. And naturally, Shook is quick to defend those lies too. He never appears concerned with, nor makes mentions of the fact that Chase now admits to exactly what Shook says never happened.  What's important is that after all of Shook's lying (which I take apart herein), Heather Chase came right out and made him look like an accomplice, a stooge, and a fool. Given his dishonesty and transparent mendacity, I'm really ok with that.  

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To see real time responses or engage me about this drama, please follow @ShoqRetorts

 

Unless you have been living in a cave somewhere, you've probably heard the canard acting as the title of this post.   It's been a recurring meme for 3 years now, and used by enemies, past and present to smear me and assassinate my character.  It gets new life whenever any new drama resurrects it such as the ridiculous "shoq abused vdaze narrative now entering it's third month. Smears work the same way right wing propaganda does. You repeat the lie again and again and again until enough people think "gosh, there must be something to it or all these people wouldn't be saying it, right?."  It's sometimes called "Fox News."  This may all seem pretty juvenile to you, and it is, but it usually does to someone not living through it. These people are now running "unfollower contests."  The followers lost already  mean little to me. But the damages to my name, reputation and professional interests are another matter.

The lack of any real evidence will help me in future actions taken against this vicious character assassination.  So to prove they have never had any, and never did….I am now offering an open invitation to… 

Bring it! Bring your hard evidence against @shoq 

Total (eligible) submissions since 9/30/2021:  0     
 

 


To all of you #shoqboilers out there, here's your moment to shine.  Bring us your evidence of my "bullying" and "abusing women."  Let everyone see the hard evidence of your claims which you push relentlessly, month after month, year after year.  I will let everyone see just what you have. You don't even have to leave an email. Just be sure what you have is at least credible. Only the infamous @vdaze voice message is exempt, as that 8 month old voice mail message has been discussed ad nauseum and was merely a device to triggrer this latest smear. 

As for anything else, please post below any evidence you have below AS A COMMENT on this paqe. This might include:

  • A tweet, blog post, website link that has a real person standing behind it, and not some anonymous smear-merchant with an ax to grind using phony images or unacccountable websites.
  • An accounting or anecdote with a real  witness who would sign an affadavit as to its truthfulness, or testify to it in court.
  • An email (with headers) or instant message that went through Google or some other service where the text can be subpoenaed. 
  • A voice message or other recording
  • If your evidence is a tweet, webpage, or other webobject, you must include a URL or it goes to the garbage-out page.
  • Merely posting Tweets of someone making a claim is not evidence of anything, but if you insist on looking silly, and exposing yourself (and them) to hard questions from commenters, you can post those too.
  • If you provide some lame conversation where a political difference of opinion is what you call "bullying," or my sarcastically dispatching some right wing loon or contrarian or argumentative lefty puritopian, I will let that stand, just to show how ridiculous people can be. Such engagements are not "bullying." That's called "Twitter."

I will allow anything that meets the above criteria. I have enabled posting of media too.

You don't have to leave a real name or email if you don't wish, but if you do, you will seem more credible.  

A few rules:

  • If you try to provide anecdotal or circumtantial evidence with nothing to back it up, I will delete it from this page, but move it to a garbage-out page where they can still be seen, but they won't clutter up the stream of evidence. 
  • What you post must be about yourself, or someone real who has some kind of track record on Twitter or Facebook.  Someone that has had an account for at least 6 months, for example. 
  • You, the abused person, or their appointed legal proxy or representative should be willing to stand behind the claim and discuss it below, answering questions posed by others.  You/they should also be prepared to defend it were it ever brought up in court.
  • If it's just unsupportable bullshit with no real proof it was ever posted or happened, it has no business being mentioned as evidence or a "fact" and will be moved to the garbage-out page.
  • Mere rants will not be allowed at all. If you just want to spew opinions about me, start a blog. This is for what people claim is hard evidence of Shoq's "abusing or bullying of anyone, but particularly women,"  
  • If you provide patently false information, you may expose yourself to charges of defamation or libel.

So why am I doing this?

Because I am disgusted by this daily kangaroo court justice that so many people enable because they 1) don't know or have any the facts, 2) don't want to be bullied for asking questions of the smear mongers, or 3) are simply gullible, naive, or stupid.

There is no evidence of this abuse narrative and there never was. To these #shoqboilers, I was born in Kenya, and that's the end of their story.  I argue politics, and I organize social media projects. And I do both vociferously and enthusiastically. Both have made me a lot of enemies on the Right and the Left. They rarely want to take me down with ideas or debate, so they try to intimidate people into unfollowing me, or attacking me. It's been this way for years.  

I don't bully anyone, nor do IU "abuse women."  I once raised my voice and used an inappropriate word in anger at an cybe-girlfriend who was encouraged to publish a recording of it 8 months after the fact, just to embarass me. I apologized for it here on this blog in several ways. 

So if you want to make some new charge, bring your evidence and back up your story.  But more importantly, if  you encounter anyone making such charges, ask them to post it here where everyone can share it. If they haven't done that yet, or don't want to do that for any reason, 1) ask yourself why, and then, 2) dismiss it for what it is, is: bullshit.

To see real time responses or engage me about this drama, please follow @ShoqRetorts

I especially welcome these participants

@gottalaff, @tymlee, @nicolesandler, @angryblacklady, @vdaze, @jennyjinx, @ttlanes, @rebeccayorkart, @nadiaartist, @semishark, @brandibax, @shoqpaholic_918,@james_x_,  @themanknownasx, @iboudreau, @theXclass, @sickjew, @jc_christian,  @tosFM, @dudeImanegg, @cody_k, @deniseromano, @watergatesummer

Bonus

If you have instant mesages, emails, or Direct Messages with any of the above people to disparage, smear or even urge you to unfollow me, use the contact button in the menu above. I will pay you for it. 

The Evidence Begins Below 

See garbage-out page for crap that didn't qualify as serious evidence.  (01) posts moved there.


 

 

 

 

 

Please see VERY Important Updates below

Early Wednesday morning (9/26/2012), Darshann Simon, aka @honeybadgerLA, the friend and legal associateof @angryblacklady, and brief (but obviously disastrous) romantic connection of mine, decided to blow up my telephone 15 times about 36 hours after OsborneInk's first Shoq's Twitter Brigade Burn Notice.

 
Darshann used her home phone and cell phone to make these calls. I don't know why. Perhaps she figured one was blocked. In fact, I was just not answering her. She also left several voice mails, the longest being 48 seconds.

Anything Darshann needs to say to me can be said by email.

And all of this because a man she thought she fell in love with after barely 3 weeks was a bit squirmy about "treating her like a queen," rather than just treating her well. 

By the choices these smear-mongers have made, this entire story, and all of their roles in it will be locked in Internet amber for generations. That's a shame. But they made this choice. If they choose to retract their nasty lies one day, I might choose to remove all of this documented evidence of them. Might.

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Update #1

I had erroneously reported there were 17 calls, when in fact, it was merely 15. Sorry! Also,  I removed some extraneous verbiage from my earlier post about Darshann's family members, and those related to these other smear-mongers seeing all this someday. Obviously, they will anyway, so there's no point in wasting words saying it. 

Update #2

A member of my family received this, shortly after I posted this item around 3:00am EST last night.  This morning, a family member forwards me this letter which they received from Darshann this morning:  

Anyone who has followed this absurd and calculated drama, and this woman's daily and public role in it can only be stunned by the venality and stupifying revisionism this letter demonstrates. All I and others have done here and elsewhere has been to carefully document what she and her friends have been doing to me (and their possible motives) since August 6th, 2012 on Twitter.  

Notice there is no mention of my "abusing her," or "threatening her or her daughter,"  or any of the other massive conflagrations about Jessica (vdaze) and @angryblacklady she has been engaging in. Nothing. Nada. Zip. She tries to create the impression that she is the victim and not the victimizer, even though the evidence that contradicts that narrative is now all over Twitter and the Internet.  If you search for mentions of her by me, you will find at most two instances of tweets on Twitter since August 6th. This one, and this one. Both responses to things said by she or others in her group. Everything else has been documentation of their contrived and crumbling storyline.

If she, or anyone else had any evidence of "harassment of any kind by me, at any time, at any place, it has not been shown to anyone publicly, nor, to my knowledge, have any charges been filed. If anyone should be doing that, it's me (and it may come to that).  The woman is simply lying on Twitter, and now lying in emails to my family.  And remember, this woman is an attorney—an officer of the court.

 Below are just a few of her many tweets you can sample over the past month. Still not seen enough?  You can see so many others by her, as well as her campaign co-horts, @vdaze and @angryblacklady, here in this document (scroll down to see more of Darshann Padilla).

 

 

 

 

The infamous Randy Hahn (aka @farRightOfLeft), a conservative operative who pretended to be a progressive so he could infiltrate progressive organizations, now has a radio show. Since his entire claim to fame is based on issues with me, it seemed only appropriate that I appear on his second show. Since listening to podcasts can be annoying, I sliced out the key segments and removed the annoying musical breaks.

For those following the @vdaze/@angryblacklady/@shoq drama, you may get some interesting new perspective from listening to BeccaS's segment and from mine, but the order can be reversed without much congruity damage. If you do, please listen to Becca. She's very sincere, and quite articulate about what a true bully victim goes through. 

  • Beccas43 segment — Wherein BeccaS43 discusses social media bullying, and why she first came to @shoq concerned about his behavior, only to learn that he was the one being victimized by an organized smear campaign.
  • Shoq's Segement  — To his marginal credit, "Randy Hahn" invited me on to address the tired old charges made about him by the now semi-legendary "@vdaze/AngryblackLady/HoneybadgerLA" clique and their contrived  smear campaign against me.  We also get into debunking the equally stupid origins of a much earlier smear campaign by the blogger @gottalaff. But the best part is where I get to take Randy apart over… well, everything :) 
     
  • Introduction to the Randy Hahn show — the only really  interesting part of which is "Randy" (aka Jason Wade Taylor, aka James Simon, Jr., aka whatever, whatever)  explaining precisely the reason why a fairly capable bullshit artist with a folksy charm and a Texas drawl can so easily con people in the social media space so easily. 
  • Entire show, with music breaks — if you're masochistic, this might interest you. It includes a weird Stranahan guest segment in the middle where Lee comes on to tell his version of why he filed a false police report and was then accused of "swatting" a blogger named "Liberal Grouch."  Stranahan, a Breitbart.com blogger  has decided—for unexplained reasons— that the @shoq was to blame of Osborneink discussing this story as some kind of deflection from Lee's discussion of something or other that Shoq never cared about. . 

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