Are these bloggers nuts?

Jim Geraghty at National Review Online’s “Campaign Spot” blog has a post about the top 25 “worst figures in American history” as determined by 43 right-wing bloggers. Let’s just say that hyperpartisanship is effecting everyone this year:

  • 23) Saul Alinsky
  • 23) Bill Clinton
  • 23) Hillary Clinton
  • 19) Michael Moore
  • 19) George Soros (8)
  • 19) Alger Hiss (8)
  • 19) Al Sharpton (8)
  • 13) Al Gore (9)
  • 13) Noam Chomsky (9)
  • 13) Richard Nixon (9)
  • 13) Jane Fonda (9)
  • 13) Harry Reid (9)
  • 13) Nancy Pelosi (9)
  • 11) John Wilkes Booth (10)
  • 11) Margaret Sanger (10)
  • 9) Aldrich Ames (11)
  • 9) Timothy McVeigh (11)
  • 7) Ted Kennedy (14)
  • 7) Lyndon Johnson (14)
  • 5) Benedict Arnold (17)
  • 5) Woodrow Wilson (17)
  • 4) The Rosenbergs (19)
  • 3) Franklin Delano Roosevelt (21)
  • 2) Barack Obama (23)
  • 1) Jimmy Carter (25)

Saul Alinsky? Michael Moore? Sharpton? Soros? Noam Chomsky? Did someone confuse “most annoying liberal” with “worst figure in American history”? Geez, what have those five doofuses ever actually done?

Why is Jane Fonda even on there? Sure, she served as a propaganda shill for the North Vietnamese, but how does she get on the list while Robert McNamara does not? He is the one that handicapped American troops which resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of our troops.

For the same reason as McNamara is the list, Lyndon Johnson should be too. Throw in his massive expansion of the government, but that’s just another point when compared to his actions during the Vietnam War.

I would throw in Janet Reno and John Ashcroft for their accusations, respectively, against Richard Jewel and Steven Hatfill. There are few things that I find more disgusting than a government official using his public office to slander an innocent person.

Sidebar: Should Mike Nifong (Duke lacrosse case) be included? Accusing three innocent people of one the most hideous crimes someone can be accused of for the sole purpose of gaining publicity and ensuing you are reelected to a political office?

Reno also gets included for her treatment as the head of the campaign to deport Cuban refugee Elian Gonzalez.

At least one of the participants that were polled included Nathan Bedford Forest — founder of the Ku Klux Klan — on their list, however, he didn’t make the top 25. Alinsky et al. make the list but the founder of a society that terrorized blacks for over a century does not?

I would throw in Andrew Jackson simply as the personification of everything that was wrong in the American treatment of the natives on the continent.

You can debate whether Jimmy Carter should be the list. The debates online that I have seen seem to argue over whether someone should warrant inclusion if their actions were based on either stupidity or incompetence, versus actual malice.

But Barack Obama? Seriously, come on.

If you think I missed someone, leave a comment and I may update my post.

More reading:

Doug Mataconis: The Worst Figures In American History.

Michael Powell: Worst Figures in American History.

Jazz Shaw: How Does One Become a “Worst American?”

A post in which I try to start a blog-war with some idiot at Bearing Drift over the gay marriage ruling.

Over at Bearing Drift, a Steven Osborne has a post about what — in his deluded mind — the gay marriage ruling (by Judge Vaughn R. Walker in Perry v. Schwarzenegger) means.

Frankly, I’m not sure why I’m bothering to post about a blog post that is just awful. I guess it’s partly because it’s so full of it, it’s amazing. Here’s the one of the most outlandish things stated in the post:

The Walker decision has, for the first time in American history, established that marriage is a fundamental right rather than an institution.

Oh really, the first time ever you say? I’m curious did you even bother to read the opinion, Mr. Osborne? Apparently not, quoting from page 110 (PDF page 112) of the opinion:

The freedom to marry is recognized as a fundamental right protected by the Due Process Clause. See, for example, Turner v Safely, 482 US 78, 95 (1987) (“[T]he decision to marry is a fundamental right” and marriage is an “expression[ ] of emotional support and public commitment.”); Zablocki, 434 US at 384 (1978) (“The right to marry is of fundamental importance for all individuals.”); Cleveland Board of Education v LaFleur, 414 US 632, 639-40 (1974) (“This Court has long recognized that freedom of personal choice in matters of marriage and family life is one of the liberties protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.”); Loving v Virginia, 388 US 1, 12 (1967) (The “freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men.”); Griswold v Connecticut, 381 US 479, 486 (1965) (“Marriage is a coming together for better or for worse, hopefully enduring, and intimate to the degree of being sacred. It is an association that promotes a way of life, not causes; a harmony in living, not political faiths; a bilateral loyalty, not commercial or social projects. Yet it is an association for as noble a purpose as any involved in our prior decisions.”).

Now, for those not versed in legalese, the underlined words that have “v”s in them are the case names. You see? Very good. The things after are volume, reporter, and page citations. For example, 482 U.S. 78, 95, means that the beginning of case Turner v. Safely begins on page 78 of volume 482 of the United States Reports, and the quote is from page 95 of the same volume. (The numbers in the parentheses are the year the case was decided.)

Now, you may be asking, “What’s the United States Reports, Mr. Genius Blogger?” Why, kids, that would be the official reporter of the Supreme Court of the United States, meaning that every case cited in that paragraph is from the Supreme Court of the United States.

So, how exactly, is this case the first time that marriage has been “established” as “a fundamental right rather than an institution” when you have five SCOTUS decisions that state the exact opposite?

Geez, I have no idea who this idiot blogger is — other than he’s a student at Liberty University — but I hope to God he isn’t a pre-law student. *Shudder*.

Oh, and Chris Frashure reams him out in the comments section too. Give that a read, that first paragraph makes it one of the best comments I’ve read in a long time.

Perfect example of why you shouldn’t believe everything you see on the Internet.

That moron Ben Tribbett at “Not Larry Sabato” (NLS) posted a picture today that purported to show a Confederate flag being displayed in a Bob McDonnell booth at a gun show.

The problem? The Confederate flag belonged to a Confederate memorabilia dealer that was positioned beside McDonnell’s booth. The Washington Post did the fact-checking that Tribbett is too lazy to do:

Hugh Crittenden, the founder and manager of the Virginia Outdoor Sportsman Show, is backing up McDonnell.

Crittenden said he invited both campaigns to staff a booth at the show, which draws 20,000 people each year. McDonnell’s campaign decided to show, but came late, so Crittenden assigned them the only booth left open: Number 43.

It happened to be next another vendor who also signed up late, Down Home T-Shirts, which got Number 44. According to material submitted to the show, Down Home T-Shirts sells “Confederate T-shirts and more.”

He said even if McDonnell’s staffers had asked for a move, the show was so crowded that they could not have been accommodated.

And it wasn’t just Tribbett that was promoting this trash, the folks at Fred2Blue posted a link to NLS without bothering to do any fact-checking either.

And no one involved has bothered to issue a correction to their original posts, including Tribbett. In fact, he has following the say (Id.):

“If a confederate flag was placed at the exact median point between the McDonnell booth and a confederate booth and the McDonnell campaign was not smart enough to demand that it be taken down or that their booth be moved, that’s almost as bad as if the flag were at their booth,” he said. “Either way, it shows a real insensitivity to what the flag means.”

And D.J. McGuire took care of that point:


Now, I have no idea what mathematical genius allowed Tribbett to determine the “exact median point” from the picture, but allow me to use this to establish Blogospheric Rule # Um, we’re supposed to be counting? – When you are forced to resort to a syntactical precision best suited for a college-level dissertation, you lose the argument.

And it wasn’t just the blogosphere promoting this story either. Creigh Deed’s own campaign manager tweeted about the picture encouraging people to visit NLS.

But, of course, this is just more and more of campaigns intermingling themselves with blogs. You would be surprised at some of the e-mails I have gotten and conversations I have had with different politicians wanting such and such promoted. In one case, a well-known local politician wanted me to accuse another blogger of committing a crime because of a picture that he was using. Yes, seriously. And for some reason, he thought that just mentioning an extremely vague criminal statute to me and the blogger’s name would just cause me to pounce. Sorry, guess I’m not as stupid as Ben Tribbett.

In fact, if a campaign mentions anything about something I was going to write a post on, more than likely that post has just gotten deleted. Why am I just going to repeat something that someone else is already saying? If I wanted to do that I would be a spokesman or *shudder* a reporter.

And while the Deed’s campaign will of course deny being involved in this astroturfing campaign, someone should ask Tribbett how a picture from a Mechanicsville gun show ends up being sent to a blogger in Fairfax County. (For those unfamiliar with the term “astroturfing”, it is defined as “[t]he disguising of an orchestrated campaign as a spontaneous upwelling of public opinion”.) Perhaps it kinda like how a video of a deranged nut, Catherine Crabill, speaking at a tea party in Heathsville ended up on the same blog?:

Leigh Anne Collier, executive director of the Democratic Party of Virginia, said a tracker hired by the party had recorded the remarks, which were edited only because she [Catherine Crabill] had been speaking for a long time.

Tribbett couldn’t tell us what county Heathsville is in, much less find it on the map, but he ends up with video from a DPV tracker, as well as a picture from a Mechanicsville gun show, and we’re supposed to believe that this junk is anything but astroturfing?

For more coverage see:

JR Hoeft at Bearing Drift


Shaun Kenney

CatHouse Chat

The Write Side of My Brain

Virginia Virtucon

Red State

J’s Note

The right-wing liberal