Terrorism Against Journalism: SWATting Bloggers and Other Harrassment

Blogger Patrick Frey has recently revealed details of how he was nearly murdered for being Conservative While Blogging.

As I read this story, I had a creeping sense of horror. And my oft-stated sentiment that maybe I made a mistake ten years ago by blogging under my own real name became a genuinely fearful reaction.

Really, this should be called terrorism.

I’ve been known to call some people who comment anonymously on the internet cowards, at least when they make vicious inflammatory comments that they know no one will be able to call them out on. I’ve always been proud of the fact that, even when I’ve embarrassed myself by losing my temper or drunkblogging, writing things I regretted, I could always say without shame that at least I wasn’t hiding myself and was willing to take the heat for whatever I said. Even if I was harshly critical of a person, you knew who I was, I wasn’t hiding under a fake name so I could say nasty things and not have to own up to it.

But in my ten years of blogging, I know I’ve been professionally slandered, that it has at times hurt my career, and I’ve known people who lost their jobs just through saying things online (including commenters and guest posters on Dean’s World) that someone didn’t like. I have been targeted for online harassment, including sometimes-innocent but sometimes obviously-intentional out-of-context quotations of my work, but I shrugged it off as “just part of the internet, man.” I have received threats, but usually shrugged them off although occasionally feeling the need to note, “by the way, I do own a gun and know how to use it in defense of self and my family.”

But this appalling attack on Patrick Frey has me wondering if I shouldn’t simply pull my blog completely offline, root and branch, and start over somewhere else with a different name that no one will know. There are times when I’m pretty sure blogging here has hurt my career, and now I begin to wonder if it could hurt me or someone I love in a much more direct way.

This is not a f*n joke: they could have KILLED Patrick Frey. For the audacity of having opinions they don’t like, and for committing shameless acts of journalism they didn’t care for.

I worry about it now. I write something someone doesn’t like: about feminism, about AIDS, about Islam, about Fundamentalist Christianity and its Rapture Cult, about the Tea Party, about Occupy Wall Street, or Obama, or Bush, or the Iraq War, about men’s rights, or abortion, and not only might some lunatic come looking for me, but worse, someone might attempt what could be called “murder by cop” just because they don’t like my opinion?

The cops could have killed this man. Not because the cops were bad, but because they were doing their jobs and some slimebag who hated him filed a phony police report. One wrong move by Frey there, one rookie cop whose training slipped for just a second, and we might be talking about the man’s f*n FUNERAL.

I want to vomit.

I offer a prayer for you and your family, Patrick. We may have had our agreements and our disagreements these last 10 years, but my God man. I’m so sorry. I hope they not only find this bastard but that he does hard, serious time. They probably can’t call it attempted murder, but whatever the maximum penalty for filing a police report is, and anything else they can book him for, I hope that’s what he gets.

And by the way, let’s not forget to call this what it is: an assault on journalism and free press.

(This item cross-posted to Dean’s World.)

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Author: DEAN ESMAY, Guest Voice Columnist

Dean Esmay is a long-time associate of Joe Gandelman and The Moderate Voice. He is Managing Editor of A Voice for Men. He also blogs on a variety of issues at Dean's World, one of the world's first blogs and one of the few that was archived as Historically Significant by the Library of Congress for the 2004 elections. You can also follow Dean via Twitter here.

  • rudi

    LOL – P Frey is lucky he wasn’t wearing a hoody and came armed to the door with Skittles and Arizona Ice Tea…

  • http://kikoshouse.blogspot.com SHAUN MULLEN, TMV Columnist

    It is somehow . . . uh, refreshing is not quite the word, to see some people on the left doing what a goodly number of people on the right have been doing.

  • http://www.deanesmay.com DEAN ESMAY, Guest Voice Columnist

    Speechless at those responses.

  • Simplisme34

    re not quite refreshing to see people on the left committing terrorism

    Really?

    re this assertion: people on the right have been committing domestic terrorism which targets bloggers and their families

    Really? Can you cite an instance?

  • Simplisme34

    I am impressed with the blogosphere’s response to this domestic terrorist. The research, conducted by bloggers, has been impressive. I am impressed at the proactive “Everybody blog about…” day. Kudos to you, Mr. Esmay, for blogging about it.

  • rudi

    While not socialist bloggers, Malkin’s and the Rights treatment of Graeme Frost comes to mind as something worse than what this post addresses. Michele Malkin slandered the Frost family and became obsessed with their counter tops.


    One critic, in an e-mail message to Graeme’s mother, Bonnie, warned: “Lie down with dogs, and expect to get fleas.” As it turns out, the Frosts say, Graeme attends the private school on scholarship. The business that the critics said Mr. Frost owned was dissolved in 1999. The family’s home, in the modest Butchers Hill neighborhood of Baltimore, was bought for $55,000 in 1990 and is now worth about $260,000, according to public records. And, for the record, the Frosts say, their kitchen counters are concrete.

    But Michelle Malkin, one of the bloggers who have strongly criticized the Frosts, insisted Republicans should hold their ground and not pull punches.

  • zephyr

    John Cole at Balloon Juice sum it pretty well I think:

    “Although I guess it was bound to happen, when you have out of control and reckless paramilitary units all over the country who shoot first and think later just itching to see action. Even worse, even when they screw up, they aren’t punished.

    Regardless, whoever is responsible for this swatting of people are very sick and evil people, and they need to see the inside of a jail cell for quite some time.”

    This sort of incident would be a lot less likely A.) if there weren’t so many crazy, vindictive people in the world and B.) We weren’t living in a society increasingly riddled with police statism.

  • rudi

    FreeRepublic also trashed the family, even posting personal info about the Frost family.
    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1907687/posts
    A Google search of FR and Graeme Frost yields 637 hits.
    Google-GraemeFrost-FR

  • The_Ohioan

    Nobody has got back to me on the Blogger Bullies thread so I’m still in the dark, but it sounds like rival bloggers have, like rival biker gangs, have moved into a whole new phase where, while not using violence themselves, (except in “yeah, so’s your mother” posts) to manipulating the police into “swatting” each other.

    I’m sure the FBI and State Police are able to sort this all out and bring charges (and better yet, fines) against all the perpetrators.

    This all sounds like a Rovian plot (complain about nasty lefties while utilizing nasty righties) which is getting out of hand. Too bad TMV is allowing itself to get roped in.

    Where do you find these authors?

  • DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist

    How about this one:

    “The co-owner of a major Pentagon propaganda contractor publicly admitted Thursday that he was behind a series of websites used in an attempt to discredit two USA TODAY journalists who had reported on the contractor.

    [::]

    Susan Weiss, executive editor of USA TODAY, said the newspaper would continue reporting on the information operations industry. “I am glad to see that we now know who was responsible for these false attacks on Tom Vanden Brook, Ray Locker and USA TODAY. We stand behind our reporters and our stories,” she said.

    Read more:

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/military/story/2012-05-24/Leonie-usa-today-propaganda-pentagon/55190450/1

  • DaGoat

    Harassment of any type is uncalled for no matter who it’s aimed at and who’s doing it, but there’s something about the Patrick Frey story that makes me wary. We’ve all seen enough stories that didn’t happen exactly the way the initial reports made them sound, so I’m inclined to reserve judgment.

  • http://hisvorpalsword.com HART WILLIAMS, Guest Voice Columnist

    It is disgusting and despicable to see The Moderate Voice turned into another “meetoo” zombie site for this Right Wing, coordinated attack with intent to destroy one person who allegedly caused Robert Stacy McCain to flee with his family in “fear” and raise a LOT of cash by screaming for donors to contribute.

    The particulars do not matter. Only the psy-ops operation, scheduled for today and utterly dominating Memeorandum. And it is despicable to see the Moderate Voice acting as an unwitting accomplice. As to whether Mr. Esmay “knows” that is for him to declare.

  • davidpsummers

    It is somehow . . . uh, refreshing is not quite the word, to see some people on the left doing what a goodly number of people on the right have been doing.

    It is clear to me the premise the left hasn’t been doing such things is wrong. However, it doesn’t matter if the right was doing it, it is still wrong take pleasure at such tactics.

    At best you are saying it is something like refreshing to see someone harassed simply because he may share some views with others who have harassed people. Guilt by association is just another excuse for condoning malicious acts. It is this kind of thing which is allowing politics to sink deeper in the morass. Each side digs up anything they can about they other (while minimizing their own with comments like this one) and used whatever they find to justify behaving even worse.

    Nobody tries to behave decently anymore. They just try and make sure they can trye and claim the other side is worse as each side come up with more an more justifications for hating the other.

  • The_Ohioan

    dps

    If it’s so clear that the left has been doing such dangerous things previously, you are welcome to give us any information you have.

    If you are here to try and erase all the onus of dirty tricks with the mantra “everybody does it”, it won’t wash – not everybody does it.

    If you are here on the behalf of the psy-ops people Hart references, let them know that they need to spread out the buzz so as not to be noticed and called on it. (This is the second thread in two days on this subject). We are a wary group here because we are MODERATES.

    If you are not a troll, but simply a disillusioned cynic, I hope you will find peace.

  • DR. CLARISSA PINKOLA ESTÉS, Managing Editor of TMV, and Columnist

    I just read Frey report which had many pix and audios. He is an Assistant DA, and has (just usual workaday environs) armed court officers surrounding him at each of his court appearances, and may have such escort him also to his car, as have many judges and other principles of the court, which means, in part that some of the police of his district would be familiar with his name and his uprightness. But the men who came after him via twitter, emails, blog posts and eventually by allegedly making a phone call to local police pretending to be Frey confessing to just killing his wife, was the end of a long line of online back and forth between all parties that covered many sites and vistas.

    I think what stood out to me had nothing to do with left or right politics. Just reading as a post-trauma specialist, I saw in the story more so that three and more persons had taken it upon themselves to menace and harass Frey because one man did not like that Frey was writing about him, a person who appears to have been deeply involved in a legal action(s) on a case elsewhere.

    The SWAT team showing up without a negotiator, without questioning any of this, to the house of a man whose name is perhaps well known in their district… I’d like to know a little more about how this was decided. Surely the police, esp a SpOps knows about phony calls. Their training is not just in carrying and using firearms and ground tactics. Although it was definitely frightening for Mr. Frey, also there is no way a well trained SpOps will shoot a peaceful person who is cooperating, even if and especially if they think the same person may have committed a murder. SpOps (My son is senior SpOps) are trained to let the law do its job once they’ve contained, and they are wearing kevlar amongst other protections and are not triggerhappy as on tv or in the movies, or amongst other first responders who are not rock solid in nerves and judgment for whatever reason.

    To me, as one who has both legally pursued criminal charges against several menacing and life threatening persons since I first published 25 years ago, the issue has nothing to do with what one writes per se. Just my .02, but I think it more has to do with people who are not well mentally, and/or with people who have extreme views with desire to be silencing, harming, or in some cases extinguishing others’ peace, family security, and sense of safety.

    I can tell true stories far more threatening than Frey’s, including coming home to a demented man who’d broken into my home to give me what for, who was waiting in the dark of my living room for me when I came in the door. All about something I wrote. To me, those who do these kinds of things, I dont give a jolly rat’s rear what political party they belong to. I care about the safety of my family and my person. And THAT, intrusion into the peace and safety of others is the criminal issue, not what anyone wrote, not who read it, but that a person breaks the law instead of just stating their opinion and going on their way.

    Trust me on this, I have the street creds and dont talk about it often… but a writer doesnt HAVE TO attack or support or question or describe any particular subject or person in their writing in order for some persons to take out after you, and in truly alarming ways.

    Back twenty years ago when I would tell the stories of our family being swarmed by unhinged people… people, just like many say still today, Oh get over it, it comes with the territory. Oh pooh pooh. They didnt kill you, maim you, murderize you. You’re still alive, what are you complaining about.

    Wondrous answers that support criminality. Thankfully over all these years there are a few laws and officers and legal eagles who take it all seriously and will do all they can to protect and defend the innocent, and contain the criminal.

    I laugh when I hear people say, oh the internet, it’s the wild west, that’s the way it should be. Right. They forget because they live in some romance bodice-ripper version of the ‘wild west’ that men and women and children were shot to death daily in the ‘wild west… that it hadnt anything to do with being creative or wild… it had little to do with what innocents said or did… they were maimed or mown down because a person or persons saw them and many others as well as not human. In the ‘old west’ that some wax so nostalgic about wanting a like-kind land online— even animals didnt kill their own kind at that rate. I’m not keen that some want their inch-deep version of ‘a wild west’ on the internet across the board.

    Tho I’d rather see people in oppositions… each side pick their best fighter, put them in the ring with each other and settle it once and for all, I’d far rather people be civil with one another… civil takes into account that others are human beings, not Hunchback of Notre Dame punching bags.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15458282944035344707 repsac3

    Best comment i’ve seen on this so far… “Brett Kimberlin is a leftist in the same way Charlie Manson is a hippy.”

    When I see more legit reporting on Kimberlin’s recent activities–by which I mean, reporting not tied to a partisan cause–perhaps I’ll be more sympathetic. (If true, the allegations against him are terrible… But between knowing some of the bloggers involved and that they have a penchant for “stretching the truth until it’s unrecognisable”–I myself, am apparently some kind of Svengali who can make folks (my henchmen) do anything I say, even while actively saying the opposite (google “repsac3″ and Henchmen”)–and the fact that an LA county deputy DA can have a swat team come to his house, even under false presences, and there is nary a blip about it in the local media, AND the police and other law enforcement officials are either incompetent or don’t believe his theory (same with Aaron Worthing and his allegations, RS McCain and his allegations, …, …), well, let’s just say I’d prefer to hear it from a few less biased sources…

    What Kimberlin did 40 years ago was awful. I’m inclined to believe he didn’t sell pot to “potatoe,” and was lying when he said he did… His lawfare attacks on folks who writ about him is pretty bad, as well… And yes, if he’s responsible for any credible threats, including this swat thing, he’s an awful man doing awful things… But for me to believe Patterico’s, Worthing’s, and McCain’s allegations, I’m gonna need to hear it from more trustworthy sources…

  • http://hisvorpalsword.com HART WILLIAMS, Guest Voice Columnist

    Thank you, Dr. Estes.

  • zephyr

    Thank-you Dr. E for the perspective and the reality check.

  • Simplisme34

    On the base level, this is not a story of left vs right. Sociopaths are too sick to be genuinely focused on particular political opinions. Kimberlin, the domestic terrorist, is not so much a political animal as he is an opportunist who exploited others (Dems and left) for his own gain.

    Being targeted, by a sociopath, could happen to any of us. If there is any instance in which left and right can stand together, this is it.

    To the extent that this is a political story, it is a lesson for Dems and the left about being overeager to embrace a narrative, i.e. about not be scrupulous enough about investigating evidence, but rather leaping, far too quickly, in embrace of what they hope and wish are true. Kimberlin noticed this vulnerability, and exploited it.

    But, that is not much of a political story. It is more of a human story. We humans are all vulnerable in this same way: we are too quick to embrace what we hope and dream is true, and we conduct insufficient investigation.

    Notice, however, that some persons on the left make this into a political story via reacting defensively, as if the left has been attacked, and via instantly making versions of the argument “everyone does it, and my political opponents do it worse.” And then they use this instance as a reason to attack the right. I do not think the actions of a sociopath are anything for Dems to feel defensive about.

    As to those who discount the story b/c it is being reported by “the right”: your are making public announcement that you only believe what you are instructed, by your favored blogosphere instructors, to believe. I encourage you to reason for yourselves. You are designed to be an intellectual lion, not a sheep.

    I appreciate the examples of bad behavior which are offered as citations of bad behavior by persons on the right. I respectfully disagree that those behaviors rise to the level of Kimberlin’s violent bombings, combined with Kimberlin and compatriots aggressive lawsuits, internet warfare, attacks upon the employment of blogger’s spouses, and various other activities such as SWATTING.

    Last, re the professionalism of SpOps, and Patrick Frey’s observation that SpOps put his life in danger: I do not think it denigrates the professionalism of SpOps to note that persons on your porch, wielding weapons in professional and disciplined fashion, and considering you as a potential threat, put your life in more danger than before they stepped onto your porch.

  • http://hisvorpalsword.com HART WILLIAMS, Guest Voice Columnist

    One doesn’t need to know whether or not the target is guilty or innocent to know that lynch mobs are WRONG.

    If the fellow broke the law, it’s a matter for law enforcement. If not, then the actual “high tech lynch mob” is even MORE off base.

    Who appointed you people jury, judges and high executioners? If that doesn’t get through, nothing else needs be said, but, all observation tells me, it won’t get through.

    We can call it the “Fox Bow Incident.”

  • Simplisme34

    What is the “lynch mob” doing, other than pointing to the record of the actions of Brett Kimberlin and associates? You are equating the shining of light, on a nest of rats, to a “lynch mob”.

  • zephyr

    Agreed, this story is more about right and wrong than it is about left and right. That said, it’s been picked up almost exclusively by conservative blogs, which are presumably anxious to push a story they see as portraying political sociopathy from the left. Given the deeply entrenched and ubiquitous sociopathy infecting thier own odd collection of ideologies, it’s understandable they would get excited about such a rare “opportunity”.

  • DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist

    @ zephyr

    I have tried to stay out of this “firestorm,” but I just have to agree with what you say.

    Just go to memeorandum and see the outrage by the right blogosphere — more posts on this than on any other national issue.

  • Simplisme34

    zephyr,

    I disagree that the right is primarily motivated to push a story of sociopathy on the left. I believe the right is primarily motivated to find a way to fight back against Brett Kimberlin’s terrorism.

    Internet warfare is almost impossible to fight back against. Even if the perps are ever convicted (a rare occurrence), the victims are nevertheless stuck with a lifetime of misleading Google search results which are attached to their names.

    Lawfare, also, i.e. the waging of warfare via numerous nuisance lawsuits, is also almost impossible to fight back against. Even if the perps are legally defeated at every turn, the victims pay a heavy price to achieve the victory.

    The way to fight such terroristic targeting is to band together, in numbers which are too great to allow Kimberlin to target each entity which is shining light upon his nefarious activity.

    Now, I have seen scuttlebutt that Kimberlin is funded by Soros, and that investigation ought be done into whether or not Kimberlin is a Soros hatchet man. But, as of yet, I haven’t seen good evidence to back up that allegation. But, do any of us have a problem with such a thing being investigated? Of course not! If Soros is intimidating bloggers, then the let that come to light. If there is not good evidence of such a thing, then let that be known, also. I know that none of you are in favor of bloggers’ families being terrorized!

    But, set the Soros thing aside: it is a separate issue. The issue, at this time, is that Kimberlin is committing terrorist actions, and terrorism is difficult to fight without everyone banding together, and Kimberlin’s terrorism could happen to any one of us. We should all be standing against Kimberlin. He has harmed some liberal bloggers, also. This is not a left vs right issue.

    If you break you guys’ argument down, you are (accidentally, I’m sure) arguing this way:
    Premise 1: the Kimberlin story hurts the left
    Premise 2: hurting the left is worse than the damage from Kimberlin’s terroristic actions against bloggers, spouses, families, and taxpayers
    3: therefore, we will not oppose Kimberlin’s terrorism. Instead, we will oppose those who oppose Kimberlin’s terrorism.

  • Simplisme34

    This story should be picked up by liberal blogs. If they are not picking it up, then they are reasoning in misguided fashion.

    This is an opportunity for liberal blogs to show they are strong and independent thinkers, i.e. that they do not merely dance to a tune which is called by Media Matters, Think Progress, and a few other huge liberal blogs. re this story, those huge blogs might be compromised by their financial relationship to Soros. But, the remainder of the liberal blogosphere are not mere parrots, are they? This is an opportunity for the remainder of the liberal blogosphere to show they are strong thinkers who can reason for themselves, and who can see Kimberlin terrorism when the evidence is stacked up before their eyes. Conservatives are always saying that liberals are sheep who follow their narratives and cannot reason for themselves. This is an opportunity to prove conservatives wrong, and to do the right thing while you are proving them wrong!

  • rudi

    Gotta love Reason’s response to the Rights flame up over this story.
    http://reason.com/blog/2012/05/25/patterico-brett-kimberlin-and-the-super

    The Patterico post is part of an effort promoted by Instapundit, Hot Air, Michelle Malkin, The Other McCain, and others as “Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day.”

  • Simplisme34

    I’m not certain you comprehend the point of the blogpost you linked to. Nick Gillespie, author of the Reason blogpost, is endorsing “Everybody Blog About Bret Kimberlin Day”? Gillespie is not issuing a “response” to what he considers a “flame up.” Rather, Gillespie thinks that blogging about Kimberlin is a good idea.

    Are you trying to be ironic? As in: Reason Mag is so unreasonable that they endorse an idea promoted by unreasonable bloggers such as Instapundit, Hot Air, Michelle Malkin, The Other McCain. Is that your point?

  • rudi

    @Simp
    You miss the points between the lines. Reason waited a couple days to post about this flame out. Some of the comments address Patterico as a less than sympathetic person. If they can show direct links to the Speedway bomber and the swatting, then there is a story.

  • JMNash

    Sadly, what started about a small group of individuals who went far, far beyond the bounds of reasonable behavior turned into an attack on the left in general.

    It would be nice if we could ALL get together and say that there are some things that will not be tolerated no matter who does it.

    But that would require both sides to ‘police’ their own, at the expense of solidarity. And neither side is willing to be first.

  • DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist

    Wow! Progress!

    Memeorandum has gone from posting nearly one hundred links to articles about Brett Kimberlin yesterday, on “Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day” to zero this evening.

    Perhaps we can now turn our attention to the real important issues facing America, such as Terrence P. Jeffrey’s 1,170 word post today on President Obama misspeaking twice –saying “my sons” instead of “my daughters” — in two campaign speeches over the last two days.

    Read this earth-shattering news here:
    http://cnsnews.com/blog/terence-p-jeffrey/obama-twice-mistakenly-mentions-my-sons-while-defending-contraception-mandate

    And, of course, while you are there, don’t forget to make your tax-deductible gift so that Jeffrey can continue to report such important news.

  • rudi

    @JMN
    What makes one think that BK is behind the SWAT of Patterico. An AD in a large city makes many enemies. With caller ID why would police not verify that a call was local? Things just don’t add up in the fire/flames…

  • zephyr

    Thanks Dorian for the “earth-shattering” news. ;-)

  • Simplisme34

    rudi,
    within 24 hours of the Pattterico SWATTING, another enemy of Kimberlin was also SWATTED.

    Second, when Patterico was SWATTED, at 12:30ish in the night, he was on simultaneously on the phone with the man he suspects of calling in SWAT on him. The pretense of the call, that the man had big information to disclose to Patterico, turned out to be false. The FBI told Patterico that it is common for a perp to attempt to be on the phone with a victim when the raid happens.

    Third, Patterico had a voice analyst analyze the suspected perp. The voice analyst found that it was “probable” that the perp made the police call re Patterico, and also made the police call re the other enemy of Kimberlin.

    I think there is more evidence, but I cannot remember what, and you could read Patterico’s article at the link. In the article, Patterico links to other bloggers who have been terrorized by Kimberlin and his confederates. BTW, the suspected perp, on the SWATTING, is not Kimberlin, but rather a confederate of Kimberlin.

  • Simplisme34

    JM Nash says: “It would be nice if we could ALL get together and say that there are some things that will not be tolerated no matter who does it.

    But that would require both sides to ‘police’ their own, at the expense of solidarity.”

    Your first premise is that both sides are acting as unified entities. I disagree.

    If we assume that both sides are acting as unified entities, your second premise is that both unified entities are more interested in political victory than in objectively moral behavior. I disagree.

    If we assume that both sides do prefer political victory to objectively moral behavior, then I would assert, to both sides, that objectively moral behavior (such as the Golden Rule, such as opposing terrorism) is the optimal tactic for achieving the goals of both sides.

    I would ask the partisans of both sides: do you want to belong to groups which are philosophically committed to immoral action? I don’t. Do you owe any loyalty to a group which is philosophically committed to immoral action? I do not.

  • Simplisme34

    The argument, for refusing to stand against terrorism, is a “greater good” argument, i.e. supporting the Democratic Party is a greater good than is standing against terrorism.

    I do not think the Democratic Party is so fragile as to be incapable of standing up under the weight of criticism, as to be incapable of having misdeeds revealed. Anyone, who actually believed the Democratic Party was this fragile, would leave the Democratic Party.

    Anyone, who wants to be in the Democratic Party, also wants the Democratic Party to police up its misdeeds. If there are misdeeds which are related to Kimberlin, then Democrats want to see those misdeeds policed up, and hopefully not repeated in near future.

    If such misdeeds are hidden, instead of corrected, then internal rot occurs. Internal rot would be much more devastating than would be any short term electoral consequences.

    All the above said: I still say this is not much of a political story. Whatever misdeeds might be attributed to Democrats are minor, and are more about natural human mistakes than they are about any type of mistakes which are related to political philosophy.

    The only serious scandal would be if Soros was involved, and was using Kimberlin and friends as a well funded group of thugs (think Nixon’s Plumbers, only reborn as terrorists) who terrorize bloggers who are part of the political opposition. I do not see sufficient evidence of that. If that is true, then the Democratic Party has a huge interest in exposing it and cleaning it up.

    But, I do not see evidence that that is true. This whole thing is about a more limited issue: Kimberlin’s (and confederates) terrorism.

  • The_Ohioan

    Simp

    You might as well give it up. This is a moderate site and we are well able to sort through all the innuendo and red herrings thrown at us including the “It could be Soros, but then he is an honorable man” excreta.

    Swatting is a new and terrible thing and is as apt to get someone hurt or killed as Tea Party rallies with gun-toting second amendment wackos.

    But we here are able to judge for ourselves and completely incapable of considering ourselves unable to understand motives of authors and commenters.

    Nice try, though. You are very good at what you do.

  • davidpsummers

    The_Ohioan says:
    May 25, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    dps

    If it’s so clear that the left has been doing such dangerous things previously, you are welcome to give us any information you have.

    Well, I have to say that I find it unlikely the someone would think the left has _never_ done _anything_ wrong in this regard. But it don’t want to let it distract from my main point. So we assume that is true. What does that mean? Is it OK for someone to target any conservative (regardless of whether they have themselves done something like this)? Do we excuse such things from the left until the “even the score”? Is say not. Such things are always wrong.

    If you are here to try and erase all the onus of dirty tricks with the mantra “everybody does it”, it won’t wash – not everybody does it.

    I’m not sure how you have decided that I’m doing what I’m objecting to. It is the comment I was responding to that tried to divert attention with the idea that the Republicans do it.

    If you are here on the behalf of the psy-ops people Hart references, let them know that they need to spread out the buzz so as not to be noticed and called on it. (This is the second thread in two days on this subject).

    I guess I could deny that I’m some psyops for the right wing, but one you get into allegation like that, denials are only considered proof.

    We are a wary group here because we are MODERATES.

    I’m not sure how the position that Democrats have done nothing wrong and Republicans are to blame is “moderate” and the position that politics being poisoned by both sides isn’t.

    If you are not a troll, but simply a disillusioned cynic, I hope you will find peace.

    And in the very first response we are already into the personal attacks. I have so that isn’t very “moderate” either.