Tuesday, November 29, 2005

For Some Reason...

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Malkin, so bothered by racial slurs, seems to have no problem linking to (or even blogrolling) blogs with the word "Jawa" in the title.

I wonder why that is?

Update: Not to mention to a post in which a commenter suggests that this whole thing is faked. And another who suggests that members of Christian Peacemaker Teams will rethink their nonviolent stance based on this event. Who's wearing tinfoil hats and into flexible morality now?

My thoughts are with the hostages, of course. Several students and alumni at my college did and do volunteer with CPT in one capacity or another, including at least one alumnus that I know of who went to Baghdad in 2003. They do very, very important work.

Self-promotion, Malkin style

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Okay, well, it's not exactly egregious, although perhaps a bit overwrought:
BERKELEY HATES DIVERSITY...

...of thought. (Thanks, Jeff!)
Nothing wrong with a little lobbying for your favorite author, but I think it's time for Malkin's supporters to retire this particular line:
Michelle even does her own research, unlike Franken...
...since she has freely admitted otherwise. I mean, LA and I may never convince the kool-aid drinkers of the truth of Ghost Blogging, but on the research point there can no longer be any argument.

Why does Malkin hate the free market?

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See:
FAIR AND BALANCED ON CAMPUS

...Anti-war zealot Cindy Sheehan will receive $11,000 in student fees to speak at the State University College at Oneonta.

FOX News military analyst and Iraq war veteran Lt. Col. Scott Rutter, who will counter Sheehan in a separate presentation, will receive $600.
Also appearing at SUNY-Oneonta: Jaleel White. No word on how much he's getting.

Monday, November 28, 2005

BAR day is December 1st

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I know, it usually falls on a Wednesday, but just this once...

I didn't forget, honestly. I just was waiting until an opportune time to mention that I'll be participating in Blog Against Racism day.

Even if it's just to mention that, considering my particular blog's topic, every day is Blog Against Racism Day.

Ba-dum.

No Sympathy for Saddam Here...

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...but what a ridiculous assertion.
Patrick Hynes of ABP guest-blogging at Right Wing News:
[T]he president and his surrogates need to call his critics out on the carpet: They cannot retroactively oppose the Iraq War and agree with the prosecution of Saddam Hussein at the same time...

...Simply put, if George W. Bush lied us into war then the prosecution of Saddam Hussein is a sham; Saddam is the innocent victim of George W. Bush’s zealous war hawkery...
Wow. Breathtaking. And I hate to sound like a cliche, but Patrick: Why do you oppose the prosecution of Kim Jong Il? For that matter, if Clinton was a criminal worthy of prosecution, why didn't Republicans start a Civil War in 1998?

There's a lot of criminals deserving of prosecution around the world. Worrying about killing thousands of American soldiers, demoralizing the country, and selling our national soul to get them does not equate with being "soft on crime."

I feel stupid even having to construct an argument against this drivel. Malkin should feel moreso for giving it credence.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

The Case of the Disappearing Book Tour

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Once upon a time, Regnery Publishing organized some appearances for the author of Unhinged to talk about her latest opus. The list of appearances was found here.

Now, not so much. I don't think the appearances have been cancelled...so where'd they go?

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Bleeding Hearts vs. Bloodthirst

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Malkin may have a sliver of a point in questioning the propriety of lionizing a man who hasn't apologized for his original crimes; I'm not familiar enough with the case to understand how likely it is that Tookie Williams is actually guilty of the murders which put him on death row.

However, in all the talk about the motives of the left in nominating Tookie for the Nobel Prize, let's not forget the motives of the right.
Debra J. Saunders, who has followed the case for years, debunks the Tookie sympathizers' mythology:
Williams' co-author, Barbara Becnel, told the Los Angeles Times, "What Stan presents is hope that they, too, can change. He is worth far more to society alive than dead."

Wrong. He is worth more to society dead. The message from the Tookie-philes is that you can kill innocent people and be a star. An execution says you can kill innocent people and pay the price.
No, it really doesn't. And I suspect the so-called "reasonable death penalty proponents" know this. Which certainly raises questions about their motives.

Malkin:
Tookie Williams was sentenced to die for these brutal crimes in 1981. But at the end of this year, he will have celebrated 19 more Thanksgivings, 19 more Christmases, and 19 more birthdays. That's 6,935 days more than [Albert Owens], Thsai-Shai Yang, Yen-I Yang and Yee Chen Lin were allowed to enjoy on this earth...
But it's not about retribution.

And for someone who's so determined to hold bloggers accountable for what their commenters say, Malkin shows no hesitation in linking to the "Tookie Watch" on Flap's Blog, where one can find this gem:
his man should be granted clemancy ! the Crips have murdered & terroized more Black Americans in the past centery then the Klan could even imagen,infact he should be nominated for the nobel peace prize for his either concious or unconcious work reducing crime by Killing off scum!

Friday, November 25, 2005

Black Friday Posting Flood - Just Trying to Keep My Head Above Water

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Whew, Malkin had a lot of stuff pent-up over that pesky turkey day, eh? Quick thoughts:


  • Choose the word that best completes the sentence: Blaming "government schools" for using anti-government teaching examples shows a (surfeit,lack) of irony.
    Reason number 95,385 to keep your kids out of government schools:
    "I wish Bush would be (coherent, eschewed) for once during a speech, but there are theories that his everyday diction charms the below-average mind, hence insuring (sic) him Republican votes," said one question on a quiz written by English and social studies teacher Bret Chenkin...

    Another example said, "It is frightening the way the extreme right has (balled, arrogated) aspects of the Constitution and warped them for their own agenda." Arrogated would be the proper word there.
    Yes, it certainly would.

  • Gah:
    Meanwhile, here's what the "Iraqi resistance," so adored by the anti-war Left, was up to yesterday...
    All right, two thoughts, leaving aside the unprintable ones: 1) Someone should probably explain to Malkin that linking to a google search which brings up a whole bunch of other right-wing bloggers pontificating on something (without evidence) is not evidence, either; 2) You should probably have a talk with some of your fellow righties.

  • I can't take another year of hearing about the war against Christmas. I just can't. *collapses, sobbing*

    Okay, I'm much better. But seriously: Nothing ruins my Christmas faster than a bunch of overprivileged Christians (an appellation which describes me to a T, btw) complaining about how the left is ruining Christmas. No, what's ruining Christmas is you.

    What a terrible life that must be, to be congenitally unable to enjoy supposedly the happiest religious holiday of the year; to be forced by temperament to sniffle and snarl about how the majority of the majority just can't catch a break.

    I, for one, don't depend on stores, cities, or the US Motherf'in Postal Service to validate my beliefs or the way I spend time with my family.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Thanksgiving Day Poetry & Prose Blogging - Read Until You're Stuffed Edition

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Two poems today:

It started as a poem:
A Boy's Thanksgiving Day - Lydia Maria Child

Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather's house we go;
the horse knows the way to carry the sleigh
through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to Grandfather's house away!
We would not stop for doll or top,
for 'tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood-
oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes and bites the nose,
as over the ground we go.

Over the river, and through the wood.
with a clear blue winter sky,
The dogs do bark and the children hark,
as we go jingling by.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring, "Ting a ling ding!"
Hurray for Thanskgiving Day!

Over the river, and through the wood-
no matter for winds that blow;
Or if we get the sleigh upset
into a bank of snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
to see little John and Ann;
We will kiss them all, and play snowball
and stay as long as we can.

Over the river, and through the wood,
trot fast my dapple gray!
Spring over the ground like a hunting-hound!
For 'tis Thanksgiving Day.

Over the river, and through the wood
and straight through the barnyard gate.
We seem to go extremely slow-
it is so hard to wait!

Over the river, and through the wood-
Old Jowler hears our bells;
He shakes his paw with a loud bow-wow,
and thus the news he tells.

Over the river, and through the wood-
when Grandmother sees us come,
She will say, "O, dear, the children are here,
bring pie for everyone."

Over the river, and through the wood-
now Grandmothers cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie
And prose, provenance unknown (I found this in a collection of verse, and it worked as free verse for me, but I'm pretty sure that it's just hacked apart from a prose original. For whatever reason, I like it formatted this way, so this way it's staying):
Indian Names and Whiteman Numbers

In the old days of the Cherokees all
used to have just one name; but back
when everybody had to get enrolled,
they had to give two names before
they were given a roll number. That
was so there would be no confusion
about people with the same name.
Well, when people went down to
enroll they would pick out just
anything for a second name, because
they thought it was all just some sort
of whiteman's joke anyway. I guess
that's how the Drywaters and the
Rattlinggourds and Roastingears
and Snakeheads and Dreadfulwaters
all got their names.
One time there was a whiteman
that came and hired a crew from
around here to work on a government
project. We all went down to work
the first morning and that whiteman
had a list of roll numbers and we
were all supposed to give him our
names, so he could write them down
in his book. Well, he read out the
first number and Crabgrass Gritts
gave him his name. Then he read
the second number, and Chickadee
Augerhole gave his name. Then he
read the third number and
Groundhog Rooster told him his
name. That was when that whiteman
quit writing and said, "Now come
on, you fellows, this is serious
business. I've got to have your real
names to put down here; and I don't
want you fooling around and
stringing me along like that."
Well, after a long time we got him
quietened down so he believed that
all those names were real names,
sure enough. So then he called out
the fourth roll number, and I don't
remember now if it was Hawkshooter
Pigeon or Birdtail Nofire that
answered. Come to think of it, it
might have been that old man
Peacheater Peacheater.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Malkin Translation Service

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Malkin says:
I thought this administration was supposed to be fighting the old Clinton/Kerry law enforcement approach to fighting terror.
Malkin means:
I thought this administration was supposed to be helping us circumvent the Constitution, so that the next one will be even easier.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Context is for traitors

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An e-mailer points this one out. I must have been distracted.
Obviously the words "Never forget" mean nothing to Chris Matthews:
In a speech to political science students at the University of Toronto yesterday, the host of the CNBC current affairs show Hardball had plenty of harsh words for U.S. President George W. Bush, as well as the political climate that has characterized his country for the past few years.

"The period between 9/11 and Iraq was not a good time for America. There wasn't a robust discussion of what we were doing," Matthews said.

"If we stop trying to figure out the other side, we've given up. The person on the other side is not evil -- they just have a different perspective."
As the e-mailer says, "the 'other side' isn't al Qaeda -- it's Democrats."

Well, yeah. But that doesn't stop the Malkins from shamelessly pimping 9/11* tugging at the heart strings once again: They post a picture of people jumping out of the south tower on 9/11. Never mind that Iraq had noth--

Ah, screw it. I'm really getting tired of having to remind people. Here's some perspective: Whether it's al Qaeda or the Democrats, the Malkins have no interest in knowing their 'enemy.' They traffic in innuendo, hyperbole, and out-and-out lying, creating a caricature which would make WWI-era propagandists proud. Maybe their straw-man strategy works in the war of rhetoric, but it's no way to escape a real-life quagmire.

------------
*Eat it, Three Bulls!

Did I get hit on the head?

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Or am I just having trouble remembering this:
A snippet from [John] O'Neill's New York Sun op-ed:
Are the politicians like Mr. Kerry who led the campaign to send our kids to war (when it was popular) now to withdraw support while they are locked in combat and apparently succeeding because the task is difficult or unpopular?
From Kerry's floor speech before the vote on the Iraq war resolution:
In his speech on Monday night, President Bush confirmed what Secretary Powell told the committee. In the clearest presentation to date, the President laid out a strong, comprehensive, and compelling argument why Iraq's weapons of mass destruction programs are a threat to the United States and the international community. The President said: "Saddam Hussein must disarm himself, or, for the sake of peace, we will lead a coalition to disarm him."

This statement left no doubt that the casus belli for the United States will be Iraq's failure to rid itself of weapons of mass destruction.

I would have preferred that the President agree to the approach drafted by Senators Biden and Lugar because that resolution would authorize the use of force for the explicit purpose of disarming Iraq and countering the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction...

When I vote to give the President of the United States the authority to use force, if necessary, to disarm Saddam Hussein, it is because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a threat, and a grave threat, to our security and that of our allies in the Persian Gulf region. I will vote yes because I believe it is the best way to hold Saddam Hussein accountable. And the administration, I believe, is now committed to a recognition that war must be the last option to address this threat, not the first, and that we must act in concert with allies around the globe to make the world's case against Saddam Hussein.

As the President made clear earlier this week, "Approving this resolution does not mean that military action is imminent or unavoidable." It means "America speaks with one voice."

Let me be clear, the vote I will give to the President is for one reason and one reason only: To disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, if we cannot accomplish that objective through new, tough weapons inspections in joint concert with our allies.
Kerry made a lot of mistakes in the run-up to war. But the biggest of them came by putting an ounce of trust in a word that came out of President Bush's mouth. And yes, I know they "had access to the same intelligence." Just stop it, already.

The wingnuts are clearly scared. The Iraq war is a failure, and they know it, and they know where the blame actually lies. So they send out guys like O'Neill to start reframing the language. Kerry blew it on Iraq. But he blew it by being a follower, not a leader.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Now this is much ado about nothing

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X marks the spot...

...where the wingers get really desperate for a scandal.

Update: See!?! Idiots.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

teh l4m3 is 5o, s0 n07 l4m3

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This Is Not The Law:
...And the way I describe is not the Way. And the law I espouse is not the Law; it is merely a text description of the finger a monk points at the moon.
Read it.

Conflation, again.

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Well, Michelle finally addressed Ghost Blogging - except she really didn't, since nothing in this blog has ever remotely resembled "portray[ing her] as a greedy Asian whore/dupe/brainwashing victim who simply parrots what my white slavemasters program into my empty little head."

I haven't, and any claim to the contrary is pure conflation. In fact, the only claim that Malkin makes about my writing which holds water is probably that I made a little fun of Jesse's looks. Guilty. But the first time I posted Jesse's picture was in response to the Malkins' constant MO of finding a silly-ass picture of whoever they're writing about and throwing it out there. So I don't feel all that bad about it.

But people have come with the "racist, sexist, jealous" routine before, and I've asked them to back it up. They haven't. Read the posts carefully. There's nothing racist, sexist, or jealous about them.

[Update: LA responds.]

Update: Leaving this ridiculous crap aside, here's a couple of reax (hee hee) from both the right and the left about what amounts to an admission. Stoller:
Well it looks like she just admitted that she doesn't in fact write her own blog posts. Her husband "helped me with a handful of blog posts out of the estimated 3,000 I've written since June 2004." What is a handful? 10? 20? 100? 600? Since he in fact stopped working when her 'career took off', it must be quite a handful!

Oh, who knows? But she can't sleep and has to blog instead! Adorable! Even if she doesn't in fact write her blog!

Friday, November 18, 2005

A message to all the right-wingers trying desperately to smear Jack Murtha...

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Technically Friday Poetry Blogging: Now with annotations

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In honor of Celebrity Dream Cameo.
I CAN HARDLY WAIT FOR THE SANDMAN - Ogden Nash

There are several differences between me and Samuel Taylor Coleridge, whose bust I stand admiringly beneath;

He found solace in opium, I found it in Codman's Bayberry Chewing Gum, at least until it started loosening my teeth.

Another difference between me and Samuel Taylor Coleridge is more massive in design:

People used to interrupt him while he was dreaming his dreams, but they interrupt me while I am recounting mine.

Now, if anybody buttonholes you to tell you about how they dreamt they were falling, or flying, or just about to die and they actually would have died if they hadn't woken up abruptly,

Well, they deserve to be treated interruptly,

But when somebody with a really interesting dream takes the floor,

I don't think people ought to break away and start listening to the neighborhood bore.

Therefore I feel I need offer no apology

For having gathered a few of my more representative dreams into a modest anthology.

Once I dreamt I was in this sort of, you know, desert with cactuses only they were more like caterpillars and there were skulls and all the rest,

And right in the middle of this desert was a lifeboat with the name Mary Celeste,

And if I hadn't woken up because the heat was so blistery,

Why, I bet I would have solved this mystery of nautical history.

Another time I dreamt I was climbing this mountain although actually it was more like a beach,

And all of a sudden this sort of a merry-go-round I forgot to tell you about turned into a shack with a sign saying, LEDA'S PLACE, SWANBURGERS 10¢ EACH.

I hope you will agree that of dreams I am a connoisseur,

And next time I will tell you about either how I dreamt I went down the rabbit hole or through the looking glass, whichever you prefer.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Tonight, Ripped From the Headlines: Manufactured Outrage (ding-ding!)

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Last night:

Law & Order:SVU does a "Terri Schiavo" episode in which the "Michael Schiavo" character, played by Dean Cain, is a serial rapist who has his wife's feeding tube removed to collect on the life insurance and, presumably, so she won't testify against him.

Tonight:

Law & Order does a "Minutemen" episode in which the Minutemen kill a trucker for transporting illegal immigrants.

Guess which one upset the wingnuts?

What's your point?

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Bryan Preston:
[Clinton] is ordering major strikes on Iraq because, in his words, it had abused its "last chance."
And guess what? The left protested then, too. See, unlike certain elements of the right, liberals know that "their guy" can be wrong, and we will say so. Clinton screwed up.

But that doesn't change the fact that Iraq did not rebuild their weapons programs after December 1998. And it doesn't change the fact that we somehow avoided getting involved in a protracted land war.

Say what you want about Michelle...

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...she's never called Canada an "evil regime."

Nor has she ever publicly rooted for the toppling of a democratically elected government.*


*Except Venezuela. Nobody's perfect.

Announcement

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Guest bloggers bore me.

That is all.

Monday, November 14, 2005

As always...

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...just read Neiwert.
Unhinged lacks the fundamental honesty -- the integrity to consider countervailing facts and then factually counter them, if possible, to defend your thesis, rather than simply pretending they don't exist -- to be worth anyone's reading time.
Update: Neiwert notes that [the] Malkin[s] selectively quote/misquote Howard Dean's statement about the 9/11 conspiracy theory which he made on 60 minutes. The book leaves out some of Dean's statement which provides important context, focusing instead on Dean's supposed unhinged, negative, tinfoil-hattery.

What's fun about this is the way Michelle reacted when Chris Matthews accused her of similar tactics - with a hell of a lot more justification. Just for old times' sake, here's a transcript, essentially in full, emphasis added:
MALKIN: He is a boy in the bubble, Chris. And...

MATTHEWS: What does that mean?

MALKIN: He hasn‘t been subjected to this kind of heat. And as Willie Brown is suggesting, if he can‘t stand the heat from his fellow veterans, do we really want to trust him to stand up to Islamic extremists?

By the way, it‘s not just—not just these right wingers who have been questioning his record. The “Boston Globe” isn‘t, aren‘t operatives of the Bush campaign and they have said the same thing as the veterans did about all three incidents regarding the purple hearts. You were hammering Larry Thurlow about specific name.

[Willie] BROWN: He volunteered twice. He volunteered twice in Vietnam. He literally got shot. There‘s no question about any of those things. So what else is there to discuss? How much he got shot, how deep, how much shrapnel?

MALKIN: Well, yes. Why don‘t people ask him more specific questions about the shrapnel in his leg. They are legitimate questions about whether or not it was a self-inflicted wound.

(CROSSTALK)

MATTHEWS: What do you mean by self-inflicted? Are you saying he shot himself on purpose? Is that what you‘re saying?

MALKIN: Did you read the book...

MATTHEWS: I‘m asking a simple question. Are you saying that he shot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: I‘m saying some of these soldiers...

MATTHEWS: And I‘m asking question.

MALKIN: And I‘m answering it.

MATTHEWS: Did he shoot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Some of the soldiers have made allegations that these were self-inflicted wounds.

MATTHEWS: No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.

MALKIN: That these were self-inflicted wounds.

MATTHEWS: Your saying there are—he shot himself on purpose, that‘s a criminal act?

MALKIN: I‘m saying that I‘ve read the book and some of the...

(CROSSTALK)

MATTHEWS: I want an answer yes or no, Michelle.

MALKIN: Some of the veterans say...

MATTHEWS: No. No one has every accused him of shooting himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Yes. Some of them say that.

MATTHEWS: Tell me where that...

MALKIN: Self-inflicted wounds—in February, 1969.

MATTHEWS: This is not a show for this kind of talk. Are you accusing him of shooting himself on purpose to avoid combat or to get credit?

MALKIN: I‘m saying that‘s what some of these...

MATTHEWS: Give me a name.

MALKIN: Patrick Runyan (ph) and William Zeldonaz (ph).

MATTHEWS: They said—Patrick Runyan...

MALKIN: These people have...

MATTHEWS: And they said he shot himself on purpose to avoid combat or take credit for a wound?

MALKIN: These people have cast a lot of doubt on whether or not...

MATTHEWS: That‘s cast a lot of doubt. That‘s complete nonsense.

MALKIN: Did you read the section in the book...

MATTHEWS: I want a statement from you on this program, say to me right, that you believe he shot himself to get credit for a purpose of heart.

MALKIN: I‘m not sure. I‘m saying...

MATTHEWS: Why did you say?

MALKIN: I‘m talking about what‘s in the book.

MATTHEWS: What is in the book. Is there—is there a direct accusation in any book you‘ve ever read in your life that says John Kerry ever shot himself on purpose to get credit for a purple heart? On purpose?

MALKIN: On.

MATTHEWS: On purpose? Yes or no, Michelle.

MALKIN: In the February 1969 -- in the February 1969 event.

MATTHEWS: Did he say on it purpose.

MALKIN: There are doubts about whether or not it was intense rifle fire or not. And I wish you would ask these questions of John Kerry instead of me.

MATTHEWS: I have never heard anyone say he shot himself on purpose.

I haven‘t heard you say it.

MALKIN: Have you tried to ask—have you tried ask John Kerry these questions?

MATTHEWS: If he shot himself on purpose. No. I have not asked him that.

MALKIN: Don‘t you wonder?

MATTHEWS: No, I don‘t. It‘s never occurred to me.
Who tends to lend "a shred of credence" to "baseless theor[ies]", again?

It'd be cute if it weren't so desperate...and tasteless

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It appears that Bush's Veterans' Day speech (not to mention today's) was in some kind of secret wingnut activation code, translating to one thing: "Quick, lie some more." Malkin:
[Bush says:]
Leaders in my Administration and members of Congress from both parties looked at the same intelligence on Iraq...
Keep saying it.
Maybe it'll come true.

But probably not.

I'm stocking up on Tamiflu

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Timing is everything.
My friend Michael Fumento quells the hysteria in this week's Weekly Standard cover story [on Avian flu].
This isn't offered as proof of anything, of course. At the least, though, it shows that Michelle and Jesse have at least one thing in common: They both love right-wing crackpots.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

I don't know what to make of this...

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...the fact that a professor at Brigham Young University was named "Moonbat of the Day."

A comment about Prof. Jones at ratemyprofessor.com:
Combines Academic learning with insightful spiritual learning...
Islamic jihadists, presumably Latter-Day Saints professors, Quakers...at some point, doesn't the term "moonbat" become completely meaningless?

Friday, November 11, 2005

"Better late than never?" Sadly, No!

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On today's speech:
My question: What took him so long? He could have made this speech while Sheehan was gaining traction outside his Crawford, Tx. ranch this summer with her "Bush lied!" brigades. He could have made this speech while the anti-war movement and the media were busy politicizing the "2000 dead" milestone in the most macabre and dishonest way. He could have made this speech as Harry Reid was jumping up and down like Rumpelstiltskin behind the Senate chamber's locked doors.

But he didn't.
Actually, he pretty much did. And it was bullshit then, too.

It's-still-Friday-on-the-west-coast Poetry Blogging, Self-awareness Edition

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Because if we as bloggers can't poke fun at ourselves, we shouldn't be in this "business" in the first place:

The Owl and the Nightingale - translated from Middle English

I was in a valley in springtime;
in a very secluded corner,
I heard an owl and a nightingale
holding a great debate.
Their argument was fierce, passionate, and vehement,
sometimes sotto voce, sometimes loud;
and each of them swelled with rage against the other
and let out all her anger,
and said the very worst she could think of
about the other's character,
and especially they argued vehemently
against each other's song.

The nightingale began the argument
in the corner of a clearing,
and perched on a beautiful branch---
there was plenty of blossom around it---
in an impenetrable thick hedge,
with reeds and green sedge growing through it.
She was all the happier because of the branch,
and sang in many different ways;
the music sounded as if it came
from a harp or a pipe rather
than from a living throat.

Nearby there stood an old stump
where the owl sang her Hours,
and which was all overgrown with ivy;
this was where the owl lived.

The nightingale looked at her,
and scrutinised her and despised her,
and everything about the owl seemed unpleasant to her,
since she is regarded as ugly and dirty.
'You nasty creature!', she said, 'fly away!
The sight of you makes me sick.
Certainly I often have to stop singing
because of your ugly face.
My heart fails me, and so does my speech,
when you thrust yourself on me.
I'd rather spit than sing
about your wretched howling.'

The owl waited until it was evening;
she couldn't hold back any longer,
because she was so angry
that she could hardly breathe,
and finally she spoke:
'How does my song seem to you now?
Do you think that I can't sing
just because I can't twitter?
You often insult me
and say things to upset and embarrass me.
If I held you in my talons---
if only I could!--
and you were off your branch,
you'd sing a very different tune!'

The nightingale answered,
'As long as I keep out of the open,
and protect myself against being exposed,
I'm not bothered about your threats;
as long as I stay put in my hedge,
I don't care at all what you say.
I know that you're ruthless
towards those who can't protect themselves from you,
and that where you can you bully
small birds cruelly and harshly.
That is why all kinds of birds hate you,
and they all drive you away,
and screech and scream around you,
and mob you at close quarters;
and for the same reason even the titmouse
would gladly rip you to pieces.
You're ugly to look at,
and hideous in all sorts of ways;
your body is squat, your neck is scrawny,
your head is bigger than the rest of you put together;
your eyes are black as coal, and as big
as if they were painted with woad.
You glare as if you want to bite to death
everything that you can strike with your talons.
Your beak is hard and sharp,
and curved like a bent hook.
You often make a repeated clacking noise with it,
and that's one of your songs.
But you're making threats against my person,
and would like to crush me with your talons;
a frog would suit you better,
squatting under a mill-wheel;
snails, mice, and other vermin
would be more natural and appropriate for you.
You roost by day and fly by night;
you show that you're an evil creature.
You are loathsome and unclean---
I'm talking about your nest,
and also about your dirty chicks;
you're bringing them up with really filthy habits.
You know very well what they do in their nest:
they foul it up to the chin;
they sit there as if they're blind.
There's a proverb about that:
'Shame on the creature
which fouls its own nest'!
The other year a falcon was breeding;
she didn't guard her nest well.
You crept in there one day,
and laid your filthy egg in it.
When the time came that she hatched the eggs
and the chicks emerged,
she brought her chicks food,
watched over the nest and saw them eat;
she saw that on one side
her nest was fouled on the outer edge.
The falcon was angry with her chicks,
and screamed loudly, and scolded sternly:
'Tell me, who's done this?
It was never your nature to do this kind of thing.
This is a disgusting thing to have happened to you.
Tell me, if you know who did it!'
Then they all said,
'It was actually our brother,
the one over there with the big head---
it's a pity nobody's cut it off!
Throw him out as a reject,
so that he breaks his neck!'
The Falcon believed her chicks,
and seized that dirty chick by the middle,
and threw it off that wild branch,
where magpies and crows tore it to pieces.
There's a fable told about this,
though it's not entirely a fable:
this is what happens to the villain
who's come from a disreputable family
and mixes with respectable people;
he's always letting his origins show,
that he's come from a rotten egg
even if he's turned up in a respectable nest;
even if an apple rolls away from the tree
where it was growing with the others,
although it's some distance from it
it still reflects clearly where it's come from.'

The nightingale replied with these words,
and after that long speech
she sang as loudly and as shrilly
as if a resonant harp were being played.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Bareback Jesse

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[cross posted to LiberalAvenger...]

What was 25 year old Rhodes Scholar and wingnut think-tank RAND Corporation analyst Jesse Malkin doing in 1994?

Spending his evenings curling up with his new bride Michelle and a bag of microwave popcorn in front of the idiot box, naturally - and dishing on his favorite shows with his pals on USENET.

Here's the Rhodes Scholar on Melrose Place:
A subject I've never seen discussed on this board: Why is the Melrose Place gang still renting? Certainly Billy and Allison make enough money to buy their own home. In fact, if we assume Amanda charges $1,000 a month (par for the course for nice apartments in L.A.), any Melrose Place occupant could find himself or herself a nice condo for about the same monthly price. Haven't these folks ever heard of the mortgage interest deduction?

A related point: Now that Chris the Aussie is broke, we can safely assume he is no longer paying Sydney's rent. It is hard to imagine Sydney could swing the bill herself on her Shooters' salary. Since Jane is bankrupt, it is only logical that the two sisters should move in together.
Here is one of the conservative movement's greatest minds weighing in on Beverly Hills, 90210:
What kind of message are 90210's producers trying to send by letting Dylan off with a slap on the wrist? Certainly not that people should be held accountable for their actions!
Yeah, Jesse... What's up with that? Dylan was so handsome he could talk a dog off a meat wagon... Must have been a bunch of unhinged liberals writing/producing that show.

The show that really consumed Jesse intellectually, however, was MTV's Real World San Francisco.

It wasn't Puck that caught Jesse's eye during that fateful season in the City by the Bay. It wasn't Rachel, either. It was Pedro Zamora, the Cuban-American anti-HIV educator who was suffering from AIDS.

Here's what one of RAND's top health care analysts had to say about Zamora's tireless crusade to educate the public about the risks of HIV and AIDS:
Pedro's main message in his lectures was that AIDS doesn't discriminate, that everyone is at equal risk. He went so far as to conceal his homosexuality in one of his lectures to drive home the point that *anybody* can get AIDS. But the truth is that AIDS *does* discriminate. Only about 2-3% of the U.S. public is homosexual, but homosexuals comprise about two-thirds of AIDS cases.

As Michael Fumento showed in The Myth of Heterosexual AIDS, your chances of contracting this disease if you are straight and don't use drugs is close to zero. Studies have shown that straight men who are married to infected partners and have sex with them on a frequent basis tend not to contract AIDS. If Magic Johnson got AIDS by having sex with an infected woman, as he claims, then he is the exception, not the rule.

As Fumento observes, telling straight people that *anybody* can get AIDS is sort of like telling men that *anybody* can get breast cancer. Technically it is true but it obfuscates more than it clarifies.

It is sad that Pedro's death has been used to further perpetrate this myth.
Hold on a minute here, winger! The Myth of Heterosexual AIDS? Saying that anybody can get AID is like saying anybody can get breast cancer?

Here's an excerpt from the GOP's platform on AIDS:
AIDS is one of the deadliest epidemics in human history. An estimated 38 million people worldwide are living with HIV/AIDS and more than 20 million people have died as a result of the disease. This disease has created an estimated 14 million AIDS orphans – children who have lost at least one parent to HIV/AIDS.
Now I'm no public health policy expert, but I have to imagine that at least some of the estimated 14 million AIDS orphans' parents contracted AIDS heterosexually.

Malkin is arguing against safe-sex here. If you're not gay and you don't share needles then there is no need to be concerned about AIDS. While he made this assertion in 1994 it was abundantly clear even then that heterosexual sex without a condom is behavior that risks the transmission of HIV, particularly from men to women.

I'm not sure what to make of this. Is the message he's sending "only fags and degenerates get AIDS?" Is this a valiant attempt to keep wingnut penises out of latex? Is it a simple case of Jesse preferring to ride bareback?

Whatever the reason behind this disinformation, we should be thankful that Jesse's public health pulpit today is restricted only to the blogging he does under his wife's name and any future books published by Regnery that he writes for her.

Saddle up, kids - and remember, don't shoot the bleach.

barmy, batty, berserk, bonkers, cracked, crazed, cuckoo, daft, delirious...

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The Malkins thought it was ever so clever to run a series of mugshots of "average liberals" who had allegedly done various "unhinged" things.

Well, never let it be said that Jesse Malkin doesn't know from unhinged.

Allegedly.

From The Oberlin Forum, October 1991 [various emphases mine], a letter by a student named Alexis Zybach-Sadki:
Mr. Jesse Malkin, founder and former publisher of the Oberlin Forum, physically assaulted and verbally threatened to kill me on the afternoon of the 1991 Commencement exercises, just after I had taken one picture of him for the Oberlin Hi-O-Hi 1991 yearbook supplement. I am writing because I feel that such an act of intolerance should be unacceptable in an academic community which of course values tolerance, freedom of speech, and - above all - civilized behavior toward all people, including photographers...

I have to admit that, until recently, I had never really paid any attention to the Oberlin Forum. I knew that it was the right-wing publication on campus, but its articles were short, often muddled, and not very well researched (if research was even an issue)...

Commencement exercises had just finished, and Mr. Malkin was talking with College Treasurer Charles Tharp, somewhere close to the memorial arch. I approached them and circled around quickly, trying to find the best angle. I knew Mr. Malkin was a Rhodes scholar, founder of this publication, and that he had been Mr. Tharp's intern. In other words, here was someone whom I thought should definitely be in the yearbook - he was important. As I circled around, I raised my camera...I snapped on picture.

Suddenly, Mr. Malkin turned to me, yelling "Don't take my picture..." I wondered why he was yelling, but lowered my camera. There were other, equally important people whose pictures I had yet to take. Suddenly, he lunged out at me, shouting, "Don't fuck with me, or I'm going to kill you!" He grabbed my arm and tried to grab my camera, continuing to spew insults and death threats. The civilized scholar had suddenly transformed into an uncontrollable savage. Fortunately, a friend managed to pull me away from his grasp. Malkin must have regained his senses as his vicious fit ended and he ended his attack. This friend and several other people were all witnesses to this act of violence.

Now, Malkin himself has stated in an article that "...rejecting reasoned discourse and free inquiry, such behavior is the antithesis of liberal arts education." In fact, in the same article he assered that one of his major reasons for choosing Oberlin "was because of its reputation for tolerance and diversity. I was impressed by Oberlin's history and commitment to social justice," Could Jesse Malkin have gone so far in rejecting some of his most basic beliefs?

Jesse, I wonder if you will have any response to this. In "No Cider and Cookies," your attack against the 1990 March Against Bigotry, you criticized - without substantiating any of your accusations - radical leftists" for "attempting to achieve by intimidation and bullying" what they "cannot accomplish by persuasion"...
Oh, my. Well, it's no pie-throwing, but it's certainly unhinged.

Now, I'm not going to suggest that this (admittedly 14-year-old) incident allegedly suggests some sort of...projection on the part of the Malkins when it comes to their current "unhinged crusade." (There is, however, a "Comments" link at the bottom of this post. Just putting that out there.) But, let's face it, as Zybach-Sadki noted at the time, it's fascinating to find that Jesse Malkin and Sean Penn have at least one thing in common...allegedly*.

Oh, but wait: "the standard caricature of conservatives as angry/racist/bigoted/violence-prone crackpots is a much better description of today's unhinged liberals than of us." Both sides can play the anecdotal evidence game, folks.

And as for the "March Against Bigotry", in which unhinged radical leftists practiced "intimidation and bullying", here's another interpretation:
...police brutality. This was done after president of the Oberlin called the cops who brutally beat people, and then to save face put victims up on felony charges. I new very immediately what it felt like to be framed. I didn't do anything at the demonstration, neither did anyone else. Six people fought in court for 1-2 years, at a cost of $10,000...[t]he demonstration was a broadly defined march against bigotry. In the months leading up to demonstration, there had been violent hate crimes, asian guy chased with baseball bats, latino guy getting death threats, gay guy with graffiti on his door. People got frustrated that nothing was happening. The demo ended up on the grass in front of the president's house, where the cops attacked.

There was a Philipino [sic? I'm not sure] speaker, Steve, who had been involved in much activisim over the years, a thorn in the side of the administration. Steve was talking about his shitty experiences with financial aid and the administration. Cops gave some kind of incoherent order to disperse, that came accross as garbled static. Jumped on Steve and started choking him. To get to him they had to walk over people, and kicked and clubbed people out of the way. It got to be a melee. People clubbed here, choked there. Two guys and women dumped into police cars. Standoff for a few hours, eventually the women and guys were released. It was a big scandal, the president had called in the cops, it had never happened before that the administration called in the cops to break up a demonstration at Oberlin. Dozens of people went to police station to file complaints of brutality. Over 60 complaints were filed.


Wow. Disdain for anyone who dares to make a little noise about civil rights concerns, accusing them of "intimidation and bullying" when the truth is a little more nebulous, if not the exact opposite?

Unheard of.

*"Allegedly" routine stolen from Jim Rome.

Allegedly.


[Welcome friends! If this is your first time here, please take a moment to read Ghost Blogging, the sordid tale of the Jesse and Michelle Malkin conservative juggernaut. -LA]

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Class Warfare, Malkin-style

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In a bid to help cool tensions, [French Prime Minister Dominique] de Villepin proposed boosting spending on training and education programs in poor neighborhoods...
Bribery: It's how the French do business.
Shorter Malkins: Root causes are for croissant-eating sissies.

Two Worldviews

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Malkin:
The NYTimes reports on the first casualty of the riots, Jean-Jacques Le Chenadec, 61. Look for the missing words in the Times piece. Hint: They start with "M" and "I."...

Der Spiegel watches the French Flambée.
Of course it should be noted that in the rush to reprint the funny headline pun, Malkin has ignored one of the salient points of the Der Spiegel article:
...commentators in Germany look to neighboring France in dismay. Fortunately, there is no talk of a clash of civilizations, an unbridgeable religious divide or other nonsense. Most papers see it for what it is: a classic clash between the haves and have nots.
In contrast to the Malkins' take, Nur al-Cubicle does some bona fide analysis:
What can a young person expect, born in a soulless neighborhood, who lives in an ugly building, surrounded by more ugliness, grey walls upon a grey landscape of a grey life, enveloped in a society that prefers to turn away and intervenes only when it believes must clamp down and prohibit? François Mitterrand, 1990.

You can't do social integration on the cheap...

Already a dicey cohabitation proposition, matters have been worsened by budget slashing by the conservative French government now in power. Funds for neighborhood police, jobs for youth, social and cultural clubs and housing assistance have been drastically reduced. 310 million euros reserved for these urban entitlements have been pared from the 2005 budget. The exasperated leaders of French Mayors' Forum for Urban Safety have demanded the restoration of the money yet Paris has remained deaf. A neo-liberal recipe for France's immigrant population is not going to cut it.
And the Malkins' counterpoint to this kind of thing?
The Washington Post has a nauseating piece of apologism painting the rioters as neglected youth just trying to get the government's attention:
The youths rampaging through France's poorest neighborhoods are the French-born children of African and Arab immigrants, the most neglected of the country's citizens. A large percentage are members of the Muslim community that accounts for about 10 percent of France's 60 million people.

One of Rezzoug's "kids" -- the countless youths who use the sports facilities he oversees -- is a husky, French-born 18-year-old whose parents moved here from Ivory Coast. At 3 p.m. on Saturday, he'd just awakened and ventured back onto the streets after a night of setting cars ablaze.

"We want to change the government," he said, a black baseball cap pulled low over large, chocolate-brown eyes and an ebony face. "There's no way of getting their attention. The only way to communicate is by burning."
Boo-hoo.
Touching.

The Malkins' memo to Nur al-Cubicle, the Washington Post, Der Spiegel, Le Monde, and anyone else who apparently has forgotten: If Muslims do it, it's Islam's fault. End of story.

(Hat Tip: LA)

Monday, November 07, 2005

Saving America from Crescents

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Michelle and Jesse "The Savage" Malkin are up in arms over an ACLU effort to eradicate crosses from government insignia - a process they describe as "Saving America from Crosses."

Now - I'm an atheist (this is LA talking, not Auguste) and while I am a big proponent of the "separation of church and state," even I think that this effort by the ACLU is a tad ridiculous.

That being said, it's not near as ridiculous as the Malkins' own recent shrill effort to Save America from Crescents.

Note to Michelle and Jesse:

A cross is a cross - nothing ambiguous about it. To thse of us on the right side of wingnut derangement, a crescent is sometimes just part of a circle. Sometimes a crescent is just Raggedy Ann's head.

A sandwich is a sandwich but a Manwich is a meal.

Talk about Unhinged.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

"Ghost Blogging" redux

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Okay, there's been a lot of people in comments trying to argue the "Ghost Blogging" thesis not having read the full series, so I'm going to collect four posts here in one as a sort of FAQ. Never say you don't get full value for money at Malkin(s)watch.

I. Ghost Blogging - by Auguste

(Assisted by and cross-posted at the Liberal Avenger. Written - as is this entire blog - by Auguste. You'll see why I make this disclaimer soon enough.)

We're coming up on the ten-month anniversary of michellemalkin.com in its current form, and as of the time of this writing she's posted 1975 times, from this one (number 4, for some unexplained reason) to this one. For those of you playing at home, that's an average of 6.6 posts a day. That's a lot of posts. But this isn't a "see what I do for you" post - for one thing, I'm not exactly keeping up: I've only been averaging about 2 a day.

Of course, Malkin does this for a living. But the weird thing is, she keeps it up no matter what. For example, on September 8th, the day she was on her way to speak at Berkeley, she posted four times, including one in-depth post about Eric Muller. She then posted a wrap-up of the talk and a review of her schedule at two am pacific time, before posting again at 9:30 the next morning.

More recently, on Friday night, Malkin posted this at 7:28 pm, updating it afterwards when it turned out her first source was probably mistaken. The same night, she gave a talk in Washington, D.C.

Malkin once explained her prolificacy thus:
From the e-mailbox:
Is that really you posting at ungodly hours of the night?
Actually, ungodly hours of the morning. Yup, it's me. No gold-plated interns here at Malkin Central. Just me and my keyboard and my incurable insomnia.

Insomnia...it does a blogger good.
I don't think it's that simple.

Michelle's husband, Jesse Malkin, first met Michelle when they were students at Oberlin College. From Goldsea's not-exactly-flattering profile:
Jesse Malkin's first assignment for his new Filipino American reporter was collaborating on an article denouncing Oberlin's affirmative action program. Fellow students found the article offensive and showed their displeasure to Malkin & Company.
Jesse earned his PhD in economic policy analysis from the Rand Graduate School, with most of his study related to the economics of health care. Goldsea:
His PhD thesis was The Postpartum Mandate: Estimated Costs and Benefits. That subject would be reprised in a paper Malkin later co-authored as a RAND consultant with three others titled Postpartum Length of Stay and Newborn Health: A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis. Essentially, it finds medical benefit in extended hospital stays for women who had given birth. Another of his co-authored papers is titled How Much Does Global Warming Matter? and subtitled, “What the world's population needs most are more lavatories and better sewage systems.”
Interestingly enough, the one area in which Michelle seems to straddle the line between liberal and conservative is health care. Here she admits that her health-care costs have risen dramatically, and here she actually uses the words "agree with Krugman" - that our health-care system is broken, particularly for the self-employed.
After my husband quit his job earlier this year (to become a full-time stay-at-home dad), we had a choice. We could either buy health insurance from his former employer through a program called COBRA at a cost of more than $1,000 per month(!) or we could go it alone in Maryland's individual market. Given our financial circumstances, that "choice" wasn't much of a choice at all. We had to go on our own.
Very admirable of Jesse to become a stay-at-home dad. But was that the only reason he quit?

James Capozzola from the Rittenhouse Review had a run-in with Jesse in November of 2003, in which Jesse defended his wife against something Jim wrote.
Michelle has nothing against immigrants per se and would be the first to acknowledge that many immigrants make positive contributions to our country. She does, however, think that immigration should occur in a controlled, legal manner--and is particularly concerned that people who enter this country not be known terrorists or criminals. She also believes that tolerance of high levels of illegal immigration depresses wages among poorly-skilled workers and is unfair to those who wait in line to come here legally.
Jesse, apparently, did this without Michelle's knowledge.

What is this adding up to? Well, let's add one more piece of evidence: The royal we. Here:
You remember the West Seattle High School anti-war
student assembly we blogged about last week.
Here:
No, we're not turning into Wonkette, but our friend
Spokane Spokesman-Review columnist Dave Oliviera has
an exclusive blog post...
Here:
Don't miss this hatchet job on our friends at
powerline by Jim Boyd...
Once is a typo, twice is a figure of speech, three times - plus all the other evidence - makes me ready to state my conclusions for the records:

Malkin not only has a "gold-plated intern", it's her husband. Or to put it another way, Jesse Malkin has a great deal of influence on Michelle's writing, even to the point of posting on her blog, probably on a regular basis. I think it's very possible that the books were cowritten as well; In Defense of Internment was written over a period of sixteen months, the last six (or so) of which Jesse was at home.

Don't misunderstand; Michelle is clearly very capable - she wouldn't be able to handle the media as well as she does if she weren't - and certainly is responsible for much of what is written in her name. But it seems clear that her husband is more deeply involved in her career than expected.

This is important because, for me, it calls into question Malkin's motivation. If her husband is a partner in punditry, where do Michelle's opinions end and Jesse's begin? And, in today's personality-driven politics, would even right-wingers be as willing to swallow this kind of thing from a white male PhD as from a photogenic minority woman?

II. You Mean it Takes the Labor of Two People to Generate That Kind of Crap? - The Liberal Avenger

"You mean it takes the labor of two people to generate that kind of crap?" This was the question Pepper asked in the comments for Auguste's Ghost Blogging post here. Pepper was, of course, talking about Michelle and Jesse Malkin's talking-point turd-polisher of a blog.*

The answer is, apparently, yes. Yes, according to the independent sources Auguste had in his Rolodex before "Ghost Blogging" was posted and yes again, according to the new sources who have come forward since.

According to one source:
Jesse Malkin is the driving force behind Michelle. He is a control freak. Michelle is no innocent victim either. She chose to be with the guy, and apparently they have been successful as this wingnut juggernaut. She needs him as much as he needs her.

It's a match made in heaven, perhaps. Or at Oberlin.


*As opposed to my talking-point turd-polisher of a blog.

III. So What Does it Matter? - Auguste

The most common question asked of me following this post goes a little something like this:
Okay, let's say you're right. What difference does it make?
That's a good question. First of all, as noted in this post by LA, I am right, as has been confirmed by sources who have come forward since the original post. I was cagy about some of the evidence I had for multiple reasons, none of which I'll go into here.

Second, I am not attempting to destroy Michelle's career, nor am I foolish or crazy enough to believe that I could even if I wanted to. Worse has been done than anything I'm suggesting of Michelle by many people. That said, I'd like to suggest a few reasons why this might matter, if only a little.

Disclosure: The Liberal Avenger and I had many discussions about this story prior to its publication, and some of these ideas more likely belong to him - he's already written about some of them in his comments section, as well.


  1. It's the lying.

  2. As I noted in my initial post, Michelle has gone out of her way to promote the idea that she is the sole proprieter of her blog. Perhaps her resolve slipped in recent days, for as LBC noted, the new Immigration Blog lists simply "Malkin" as a byline. It just seems that she's guilty of protesting too much in, without prompting, taking full credit for "her" output. Maybe it's just another right-wing lie, or maybe it's more significant.

  3. It's the scandal.

  4. Michelle has always been very hot on the idea that blogs are home to better reporting than the mainstream media. Well, one of Rick Bragg's biggest transgressions was allowing others to write stories under his byline. If Michelle were to admit that "Michelle Malkin" is a generic byline for both herself and Jesse, then fine. Except, of course...

  5. It's the persona.

  6. A quick glance through Technorati reveals, if one didn't know already, that Michelle is something of a right-wing darling. She's not the only one, on either side, either - this is the age of celebrity journalism. She's bright, photogenic, and talented, and, in my opinion, finds a much more forgiving audience because of it. While, as I noted in my original post and continue to state, I have no doubt that she is responsible for much of what appears under her name, the introduction of Jesse into the equation does tend to confuse the issue.

    This is not to say that opinions are more or less valid coming from a minority female than a white male, or vice versa, although I am sure that is what I will be accused of saying. Rather, it is a statement of fact that the public, en masse, often reacts this way. It seems more than possible that Jesse Malkin, a white male, producing anti-immigrant, racially focused writings, would only ever be a face in the crowd.

  7. It's the questions it raises.

  8. As LA notes:
    Has "Michelle" ever blogged or written about topics related to what Jesse was working on for the government at the think tank while Jesse was still connected with the think tank in any way?
  9. It's none of the above.

  10. At the bottom of all of this is, honestly, "I report - you decide." As I noted on LA's comments thread:
    I chose a topic for a blog...My topic happens to be one particular writer.

    Then I realized my topic is actually two particular writers, so I wrote that.
    Michelle/Jesse love, love, love the idea of bloggers replacing the MSM as the source of investigative reporting. This is just playing by their rules.


IV. Me,me,me - Auguste (8/05 semi-followup)

Far-right affirmative action hire who is so bigoted she'd arrest herself for trying to cross a border. Famously published a book praising internment of Japanese-Americans that was (a) incoherent and (b) probably not written by her. If she didn't have tits, she'd be stuck writing at Townhall.com.
Hoo-doggie. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Mithras didn't quite expect the backlash he got from this post (not to say he's upset by it.) Interestingly, it wasn't until just this minute that I even realized that his original post was from a week ago today. Funny how, in a supposedly instantaneous medium such as the Internet, things can take as long as they sometimes do to get rolling.

Case in point: The Liberal Avenger and I wrote our little "ghost blogging" series just over four months ago, and, as an indirect result of Mithras' "probably not written by her", it's just now starting to get the notice of indignant righties. Like some others, I'm not altogether happy with some of his verbiage. Regular readers (thanks guys!) know that I have gone on record as being against the all-too-common ad hominem attacks, not just because they're wrong but because they give the righties permission to be outraged rather than to respond. (I even got in trouble with Atriots/Eschatonians over it, which nobody enjoys.)

"Ghost Blogging" was not an ad hominem attack. It was a confidentially sourced series written by nonjournalists (me, and the Liberal Avenger) reporting facts. It was not embarked upon because she is a woman, or a minority, or a minority woman, as some commenters at Volokh, Alas, a Blog, and probably others, would have it. It is true that I remarked upon the ramifications of a minority woman serving as at least a partial front for xenophobic opinions held by her white husband. But I also said "Don't misunderstand; Michelle is clearly very capable - she wouldn't be able to handle the media as well as she does if she weren't - and certainly is responsible for much of what is written in her name."

Here's a reprint of a comment I wrote defending myself at Volokh:
Well, I didn't come here to get into a rehash of a 4-month-old short post series, but perhaps I misspoke if I led you to believe I was talking about 'secret information.' What I really meant was sources who prefer not to be identified who informed me about, for example, her post of Sept. 8th which was posted while she was on a plane to Berkeley for a speech; pointed out that she posted within minutes of another talk; that "Michelle's" most in-depth posts are often about health care, Jesse's particular area of professional experience; that Jesse has at least once defended something "Michelle" wrote by writing a defensive e-mail to a critic - without her knowledge; that, yes, the royal we has been problematic; that her output is amazing for someone who has repeatedly claimed that she has no help whatsoever; what the topic of her next book would be four months before it was announced; that "Jesse Malkin is the driving force behind Michelle. He is a control freak. Michelle is no innocent victim either. She chose to be with the guy, and apparently they have been successful as this wingnut juggernaut. She needs him as much as he needs her"...all of which were mentioned in my posts - and the Liberal Avenger's - of the time.

This surely sounds defensive, and it probably is. But whatever. Unlike (the) Malkin(s), I don't generally consider myself part of some "new media." I also am not trained, nor do I plan to be, in the proper crediting and/or protocol regarding confidential sources.

That's okay, though, because I'm pretty sure I could open my entire e-mail account for examination and it still wouldn't end this discussion. Hope you all come and visit my blog again.


----------------------

There. If we're going to reargue this in comments, that's fine, but let's have a realistic starting point.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Friday Poetry Blogging

YOU ARE VISITING THE OLD MALKIN(S)WATCH. THAT'S FANTASTIC. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW MALKIN(S)WATCH WHEN YOU GET A CHANCE.
Constantine P. Cavafy - Nero's Term

Nero was not worried when he heard
the prophecy of the Delphic Oracle.
"Let him fear the seventy three years."
He still had ample time to enjoy himself.
He is thirty. More than sufficient
is the term the god allots him
to prepare for future perils.

Now he will return to Rome slightly tired,
but delightfully tired from this journey,
full of days of enjoyment --
at the theaters, the gardens, the gymnasia...
evenings at cities of Achaia...
Ah the delight of nude bodies, above all...

Thus fared Nero. And in Spain Galba
secretly assembles and drills his army,
the old man of seventy three.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

In which I studiously avoid doing any actual work

YOU ARE VISITING THE OLD MALKIN(S)WATCH. THAT'S FANTASTIC. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW MALKIN(S)WATCH WHEN YOU GET A CHANCE.
This isn't the first time I've said this, but if you're not reading Neiwert all the time, then shame on you.
Throughout her career, her approach has been thesis-driven: She latches onto a potential story or scandal, settles on an angle to pursue, then sets out from the start to prove her thesis, ignoring or tossing aside all contradictory evidence along the way. This was the trend in her column-writing career at the Seattle Times, and it came to full fruition in her execrable In Defense of Internment, which ignored a mountain of evidence contradicting her thesis, and in the process became nothing less than a historical fraud.
Full disclosure: My approach is thesis-driven, too. "Malkin is wrong." The difference in my case is twofold: 1) I admit when that thesis is proven false; 2) I don't claim to be a journalist. Never have, never will. Unless I actually work as a journalist someday. But since I like to do things correctly, that would mean, like, training and stuff, and I'm kinda lazy.
Now her latest book is out, and the trend not only continues, it evidently intensifies, if the preliminary material she has made available on her Web site is any indication. [My copy is supposed to be arriving in the mail soon. Yes, dear readers, I'll be reading Malkin so you won't have to. It's a sacrifice, but someone has to make it.
Hey...that's my line! How dare you!

I kid. Neiwert was reading and fisking Malkin when I was in blogging diapers, and he does a perfect job here again.

Speaking of unhinged, Myk says:
Imagine what a fucked-up, thin-skinned whining little weasel Malkin has to be to write an entire book in order to get people to launch Denial of Service and vertical spamming attacks against the email accounts of people who had written her critical emails, profane or otherwise.
He's referring, of course, to Unhinged's back jacket, which contains "reviews" by people who have e-mailed mean things, including their full e-mail addresses.
It's not as though Malkin did this on the spur of the moment on her blog. No, she had lots of time to think about this through edits, rewrites, the editing of the galley prints and whatever, and at no point did she stop and think that this is exactly the kind of juvenile crap that has become her calling card. Not only is it stupid, but it's extremely premeditated stupidity. So premeditated that it's almost a form of Zen stupidity.

Honestly, when someone does something idiotic like that, especially when the idiot in question has been known to fire off a vicious email or two herself, even to the wrong person, as David Neiwert describes the "nastygram" Malkin fired off to Julie Chen, rather than Joie Chen, then we've just stepped into the vault where wingnuts keep their stockpile of extra-strength hypocrisy.
Just so you know, Myk, I have it on fairly good authority that the nastygrammer was none other than Jesse himself.

Meanwhile, DUDACKATTACK!!! (one of the best commenting handles in history) responds to Malkin's strange little list of average-joe lefty wackos with a list of corresponding actions from the right:

And yes, what this proves is that there are examples of unhingitude on both sides. But read Neiwert for why Michelle's argument that
I do not argue that we on the Right have never gone overboard in political word or deed. The book is about turning MSM conventional wisdom on its head and showing that the standard caricature of conservatives as angry/racist/bigoted/violence-prone crackpots is a much better description of today's unhinged liberals than of us.
is both untrue and undercut by her own words.

Whew. That was hard work. Now where's my gold-plated intern to give me my massage?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Oh, Snap

YOU ARE VISITING THE OLD MALKIN(S)WATCH. THAT'S FANTASTIC. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW MALKIN(S)WATCH WHEN YOU GET A CHANCE.
They're so sneaky. I didn't even notice this until LA pointed it out...
Anti-war extremists across the country are gearing up to ditch school and work (not sure how that's different from their regular routines, but I digress).
Well, you know, Michelle, sometimes we lefties need a break. After all, we're not all two people doing the work of one.

Lie by omission

YOU ARE VISITING THE OLD MALKIN(S)WATCH. THAT'S FANTASTIC. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW MALKIN(S)WATCH WHEN YOU GET A CHANCE.
This is so unsurprising and de rigeur it's almost not even worth writing about.
The organizers should be grateful the ad isn't running. Who's Boots Riley? Here's a flashback...That's him on the right. He's the militant left-wing anti-capitalist and son of a Black Panther leader partying in front of a doctored image of the World Trade Center being blown up for the cover of one of his hate-filled rap albums in 2001.
Does she mention the album cover was created prior to 9/11? Sadly, No!©

Oh, and guess what? All leftists are anarchists. She quotes some of Boots Riley's lyrics and follows it up with
All they are saying is give peace a chance, right?

Bull.
The day you hear Boots Riley say an overused cliche like "give peace a chance" is the day you should get your affairs in order.

This is all part of the "Bush Derangement Parade", which apparently refers to something from Unhinged (haven't gotten my review copy yet) called the "Bush Derangement Syndrome", or BDS.

Which invites a new nickname akin to Thomas "Sparks" Edison or Francis "Double Helix" Crick:

"Bush Derangement Syndrome" Malkin.

Perfect.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Utterly Predictable

YOU ARE VISITING THE OLD MALKIN(S)WATCH. THAT'S FANTASTIC. PLEASE VISIT THE NEW MALKIN(S)WATCH WHEN YOU GET A CHANCE.
Reading the Amazon reviews of the Malkins' book (no link, it might tempt you to buy it) is fascinating. It's like a direct peek into the world of right-wing groupthink. Of course, in the old days, groupthink arose organically. Nowadays, the righties are fed their talking points through a Matrix-style port in the back of their necks.

Some samples:
reviewer universityprofessor2293 "unhinged" reaction [ed. note: apparently now deleted, presumably by Amazon editors] to Michelle Malkin's book is typical of the left. Never argue substance, only attack the person. What Rush calls symbolism over substance...

Michelle is, like everyone not a flaming neo-Communist (i.e., Liberal, "progressive," etc.), is constantly attacked by the Looney Left simply because she still breathes...

But that's okay -- the grown-ups are in charge now, unlike from 1993-2001 -- and we'll go ahead and keep the Libs safe despite their best efforts to aid and abet those sworn to kill us all.
Hasn't that myth been dispelled yet? DeLay, Frist, Libby indicted and corruption run rampant? What's it going to take - is Karl Rove going to have to shoot Scooter Libby on national television, Jack Ruby-style?
one aspect of Ms. Malkin's books is that they are thoroughly researched
Hee hee.
While I'm a conservative, I truly do weep over the state of the Democrat Party...

Democrats would have us believe that the election was "stolen"...Yeah ... uh-huh ... sure ... and the Monica-Bill (yuck) affair was just a "vast right-wing conspiracy," as ascribed by the ever-faithful and adoring Hitlery (oops!), I mean Hillary Clinton.
Not a single original thought or phrase between them. Amazing.

Update: DudackAttack!!! Owns the comments!!! Not to mention Wizbang!!!