April 27, 2007

More antagonism toward guestblogging candidates.

Beltway Blogroll has a comprehensive post about Hillary Clinton's "guestblogging" at Firedoglake. It notes the Sleuth piece that frets about the connection between Firedoglake and blackface humor and goes on to talk about what I said was more important, the dual problem of a blog's sacrificing its independence by publishing campaign PR for the candidate and the candidate's presenting herself in an inappropriate context.

Beltway Blogroll quotes one of Firedoglake's own commenters taking issue with the decision to present Hillary as a guestblogger:
"Forgive me, but maybe someone can tell me exactly what was accomplished by having Hilary [sic] as a 'guest?' ... [S]he didn't say one thing that wasn't part of her campaign talking points and managed to duck answering any of the more pointed questions."
One of the commenters at Firedoglake was Jeralyn Merritt, who fell below her usual astute standard to smarm:
Senator Clinton, Jane and Christy,

This was such a welcome surprise. I hope you do it again on other issues. It’s a great way for the candidates to make our acquaintance and strengthen our working relationship with them.

Jeralyn
Ugh! Beltway Blogroll is on my wavelength:
The problem is that the pursuit of a "working relationship" with campaigns can undermine the very spirit of the blogosphere. As one Firedoglake reader noted: "Senator Clinton is very on message. I don't think of a blog as a place to focus on just one subject. I can understand a candidate insisting on this as a requirement for appearing, but, on the other hand, it just doesn't seem bloggish."...

[Other commenters wrote:]

"[T]hese kinds of cameo appearances are of very little use, other than enabling the candidate to hype her talking points."

"I think you guys made a mistake, believing that you could INCREASE your blog power, or readership, or whatever, by bringing Hillary in here, having her field a few sweetheart questions, and then having her waltz out with credit for making a 'tough blogsite' appearance."
Firedoglake resisted taking this criticism seriously. TRex chose instead to write a vicious rant against me, calling me a "token," a "pet," a "talking dog," and a "vile, despicable" person. That is, ironically, he ended up underlining my point that Firedoglake is such an ugly, nasty place that a mainstream candidate should want to avoid it. Yeah, the traffic is tempting, but the traffic is there because of these very qualities. Porn sites get a lot of traffic too, you know.

26 comments:

Palladian said...

Porn sites have a lot more integrity.

Pogo said...

...and better writing.

dave in boca said...

Porn sites are a notch or two above Smokebiyotchswamp in intellectual candlepower as well!

Fen said...

TRex's little rant sums up FDL nicely: distortion, hate and racism.

And yah, Hillary played those fools like a fiddle.

Hoosier Daddy said...

[S]he didn't say one thing that wasn't part of her campaign talking points and managed to duck answering any of the more pointed questions."

Heh…and somehow they’re surprised by this? Reminds me of my favorite Hillary quote: “I’m not going to have reporters pawing through our papers. We are the president.”

Although I can picture a Hillary presidency where a whole lot of us will be asked to show our papers.

MadisonMan said...

TRex says you have servants that draw your baths!? Here on the south side of Regent Street, we take short cold showers to conserve water and energy. I'm so sure TRex does too.

Jeff said...

Holy crap, what a massive bucket of bile Trex is.

"People like Malkin and Althouse are convinced that the Right has been so much more "warm and welcoming" to them than the Left not because they're wrong, shrill, and stupid, but because Liberals are Bad People [blah blah]"

Personally, it's been my experience in real life that those on the right rarely bring up politics and are willing to drop the subject immediately if it doesn't make for good conversation. Whereas lefties CAN'T SHUT UP and want to launch into a "debate" (read: tirade) if you touch one of their hot button issues. There's no ability to separate the private from the political either - if you voted for Bush you're an evil monster and must either be converted or shunned.

It's obnoxious and fanatical, and you really wonder why those in the middle are more conformable having a dialog with the right side.

Meade said...

"Porn sites have a lot more integrity."

"...and better writing."

I'm not just starting a campaign, though, I'm beginning a conversation with you, with America. Let's talk. Let's chat @nappyheadedhosinblackfacegonewild.blogspot.com

reader_iam said...

Wow, I get called a dipshit by TRex, and he t-a-l-k-s s-l-o-w-l-y to me. (He'd have no way of knowing how unintentionally hilarious the latter is, and nor, I suppose, would you all, so I guess you'll have to take my word for it.)

Love the way that he ignores the fact that I also criticized Malkin. I guess maybe two thoughts is maybe one more than he can hold in his mind at once.

Made my morning, this one.

(Hidden irony: I read Firedoglake more often than I do Hot Air, or Michelle Malkin's site.)

reader_iam said...

LOL.

For the record, the only person for whom I draw a bath is my 6-year-old, and even in that case, he mostly does it for himself.

Ann Althouse said...

I like baths, and I have a bathtub large enough that it takes 15 minutes to fill. No servants though.

Iam: Thought you'd like that.

Icepick said...

RIA, clearly he doesn't know you if he wants to talk slowly to you! Or maybe liberals just listen faster....

Trinity said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
reader_iam said...

Icepick has the "advantage" of having experienced me in conversation. I KNOW he gets the joke, and I was hoping he'd stop by on this thread.

Mindsteps said...

I stopped going to firedoglake early in my sampling of political blogs. However, I am arriving at the conclusion that I see little difference between firedoglake and this blog. The agenda (content) is a bit different but the process of the blogs are actually quite similar. Alot of rigid ideology, dichotomous thinking (i.e. perceptions tend to be all or none, black or white, right or wrong), and emotional reactivity with little genuine self-examination.

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

Alot of rigid ideology, dichotomous thinking (i.e. perceptions tend to be all or none, black or white, right or wrong)

I prefer to think in black and white, so I can a firm basis to look at actual situations and decide how to think about them.

Thinking in grays leads to muddled action.

For reference look at the recent Dem debate.

Revenant said...

I'd be seriously tempted to vote for a candidate who guest-blogged on a porn site.

dave™© said...

Dear Blithering Misogynist Idiot,

No one cares what you think.

Of course, you wish you had 1% the traffic FDL did.

As always, whether it's other women or other websites, it always comes down to rank jealousy with this maroon.

Methadras said...

What do you people expect from FDL and places like it. These people are teenage in their thought processes and as shallow as their arguments. Their entire political stance is rooted in a contrarian point of view that can be summed up this way:

They oppose what they don't understand and when you seek to understand and have the truth of that understanding revealed to them, they lash out against it because their directives to do so are fueled by the community standards they've chosen to follow. They are victims of their own vile hatred against anything right or correct. To join it would be tantamount to treason of their ideas, to embrace it would be anathema to their ideology.

mcg said...

However, I am arriving at the conclusion that I see little difference between firedoglake and this blog. The agenda (content) is a bit different but the process of the blogs are actually quite similar.

Oh for crying out loud mindsteps, that's simply absurd. Don't destroy what little credibility you have left after your attempted Insty-takedown by exposing what a blind spot you apparently have for real liberal hatred.

mcg said...

Dear Blithering Misogynist Idiot, No one cares what you think.

Well, first of all, you apparently do. And I shudder to wonder what kind of lowlife spends his time perusing the blog of someone they believe is a blithering misogynist idiot.

And secondly, TRex apparently cares, too---more than you, it would seem, given how many words devoted to trashing Ms. Althouse. TRex kind of reminds me of the rabid homophobe that everyone assumes is just repressing something. Methinks that TRex's real, secret desire is for Ms. Althouse to draw a bath for two with a nice bottle of prosecco.

Of course, you wish you had 1% the traffic FDL did.

Actually, this blog's home page has well over 10% of FDL's, according to TruthLaidBear at least. Not bad for a solo act.

As always, whether it's other women or other websites, it always comes down to rank jealousy with this maroon.

Clearly you're talking about TRex and/or Feministing now. We haven't figured out your exact brand of degeneracy yet, but we'll get it soon enough.

Mindsteps said...

mcg said...

Oh for crying out loud mindsteps, that's simply absurd. Don't destroy what little credibility you have left after your attempted Insty-takedown by exposing what a blind spot you apparently have for real liberal hatred.

mcg, I am going to use what little credibility I have left with you (and perhaps everyone else at this blog) to try to explain.

I have observed levels of verbal and attitudinal aggression from Ms. Althouse comparable to what I have observed on the part of these angry liberals. Both appear at times to engage in tirades that seem grossly out of proportion to the provocation. Both Ms. Althouse and these angry liberals (I have observed it also with some ideological conservatives) appear to adopt a stance of ideological superiority and demean, degrade, and devalue those who might, even with reasonable amounts of civility, question their ideological rightousness. You might have a different set of observations or different interpretations, but I do not see much difference along the dimension I speak of between Ms. Althouse, these angry liberals, and for that matter, an individual like Bill O'Reilly. Now there are differences in content and each one has his or her own brand of relatively inflexible ideology (for Ms. Althouse, I believe her ideological sensitivities lie in the area of feminism) that they deem superior to almost all others (I am sure there are other differences among these folks as well. Obviously, I am not suggesting that Ms. Althouse is like Mr. O'Reilly in many other respects). And when their particular ideological preoccupation is questioned each can become enraged and can be verbally degrading, belittling, and bullying. I do not think the problem is so much with ideology per se as it is an ideology person interaction.

mcg said...

mindsteps, I admit to being impressed to the degree to which to prop up your analyses. But my gosh, there's just no way that I can remotely agree that the level of vitriol on the part of Ms. Althouse approaches what is seen on FDL and from folks like TRex in particular. I do concede to you that there are times where I've winced at some of the directions Ann has taken things, but my gosh nobody's perfect. And I wonder if TRex has, as Ann has, actually expressed regret about such an episode? Will TRex express any regret or remorse about this most recent takedown for example? I doubt it.

And you do seem to have a big bee in your bonnet about people having a inflexible ideology. I don't think that's reasonable, frankly. In my view, an ideology you're not willing to hold firm to or even advocate isn't much of an ideology worth having. But at least for now I can adjust my "mindsteps" filter to take into account that ideological flexibility is... well... your point of inflexibility.

Mindsteps said...

But at least for now I can adjust my "mindsteps" filter to take into account that ideological flexibility is... well... your point of inflexibility.

Bingo...and I need all the help I can get.

My 12 year old daughter claimed her younger brother was lying about something that she was not a witness to. When I asked her how she could know that her brother was lying when she was not privy to what happened, my twelve-year-old claimed "I know him inside and out" and besides, she laughed, "I can predict the past".

As you can probably tell by now, I taste defeat on a regular basis.

mcg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mcg said...

Your daughter sounds smarter than... me :)