Sun Jul 02, 2006 at 05:44:19 PM PDT
Let me just sum up the known facts here, and for the best big treatment of the story go see Glenn Greenwald.
The short story is that what passes for the conservative braintrust these days -- a collection of repulsive little scabs no smarter than their own shoes -- has seized upon an article in the New York Times' Travel section describing the small town of St. Michaels, Maryland, home to the vacation homes of numerous famous and wealthy Americans, notable among them Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. There's a picture there of Rumsfeld's driveway.This, the right-wing bloggers assert, is an intentional "exposure" of Cheney and Rumsfeld to terrorists, done with malice by the New York Times. No, I'm not kidding.
There's only a few problems with this "theory", as Greenwald admirably points out with the help of others in the blogosphere. First noting the astonishing fact that Cheney and Rumsfeld have vacation homes in St. Michaels is hardly new information. In addition to being public information, it was printed in a similar soft story in the Washington Post last year. So did, in fact, NewsMax -- one of the rightwing outlets now pretending that publishing that information now is treason.
Second, the New York Times printed a similar story in 2003 about the Clinton's Chappaqua home, demonstrating that these puff pieces are, golly gee, done all the time. Guess how many right-wing bloggers had a very public and ceremonially overdressed cow over that one? Yeah.
So essentially, this "affront" to the delicate sensibilities of these overstuffed sausages known as the "right" is a completely bogus story. It's all spin; there's no "there". None. NewsMax itself could tell you where Cheney lived -- they even cited the Washington Post story as their source, in their article.
But here's the nasty part. The "response" the right wing blogs have decided on, as a result of this hidden menace that they and only they can see, is retaliation against the reporters and editors who enabled this story. From one right-wing blog (no link; see Greenwald if you must):
So, in the school of what's good for the goose is good for the gander, we are providing this link so YOU may help the blogosphere in locating the homes (perhaps with photos?) of the editors and reporters of the New York Times.
Let's start with the following New York Times reporters and editors: Arthur "Pinch" Sulzberger Jr. , Bill Keller, Eric Lichtblau, and James Risen. Do you have an idea where they live?
Go hunt them down and do America a favor. Get their photo, street address, where their kids go to school, anything you can dig up, and send it to the link above. This is your chance to be famous - grab for the golden ring.
Their homes. Their children. Go report on where their kids go to school, and it's "your chance" to "do America a favor". Find out where their kids go to school, so you can "grab for the golden ring".
Yeah. And that particular blogger isn't the only one encouraging such actions, and in fact numerous right-wing blogs have begun to publish the information; phone numbers, street addresses. Maps to get to those houses. And encouragement to grab for that ring.
On a personal note, this is why I laughed my ass off at the "Online Integrity" sign-up sheet being circulated in the wake of the last event similar to this -- when Malkin's followers used the phone numbers of college students posted prominently (more than once) on Malkin's spittle-flecked site in order to, surprise surprise, inundate those students with crank calls and death threats. The premise of Online Integrity was that right-wing bloggers were going to start kicking out bloggers who did not agree to adhere to some basic, bottom-rung premises of human behavior. Guess how long that premise lasted.
So here's where we're at. Will any of the right-wing bloggers denounce the published notion that, in order to settle a score with a newsperson, you should find out where their kids go to school and obliquely use that information to become "famous - grab for the golden ring?"
Tell me, O noble dung beetles wriggling through whatever mouldering shit you can manage to dig up, where is that line? What should you do with the information about the children of reporters, if you find it?
Note to Malkin. Note to Powerline. Note to RedState.
You're all worms.
You're sick; you're disgusting; you are an affront to everything America stands for. Your stupidity makes angels cry, and your constant insistence on pushing blatantly false premises and stories taints this nation and taints the very premise of "journalism". You are shameless, cowardly, petty thugs, and you are apparently pathological liars.
So let's all see what the right-wing response is. Let's see how they respond to being corrected on the facts of this so-called "treasonous action". Let's see if they decide that explicit encouragement that the children of reporters and editors are now "fair game" is a line that should or should not be crossed. They are very insistent that over-the-line behavior by anyone but themselves needs to be condemned by all; let's see it happen.
We're waiting. Tell us that children are off limits.
Go on. That might just be, literally, the very least you can do.Update [2006-7-2 22:3:50 by Hunter]: Sean-Paul Kelley at The Agonist has a screenshot of the post quoted above.