May 31, 2011

The most likely innocent explanation for the Weiner Hacking Incident.

Yesterday, I said:
But I think it is news when a politician mishandles his internet communications. Minor news, but worth noting.

And it's really news — serious news — if either: 1. the internet accounts of a politician have been hacked in an effort to destroy the man, or 2. the politician makes the false statement that he has been victimized by a crime. One or the other has occurred in this case (unless I'm failing to see some other option).

Should we all be closing our Twitter accounts lest some devious prankster destroy our reputation? Or has Weiner — for his own purposes — maligned Twitter's business and undermined the Twitter-user's sense of security? I want to know!

AND: If Weiner is lying about his accounts getting hacked, he could be sued by Twitter (and the other companies) for defamation.
This morning, looking at a new NYT article, I thought of another option. This article goes on at length about what a prolific tweeter Weiner has been and how clever his Tweets are.
His first real Twitter post used a play on the title of Ms. Palin’s book to declare his intentions to embrace the new medium: “Going rouge over here. Starting to twitter w/o telling my minders. But what if nobody hears me? Did it happen.”
Going "rouge"? You'd think a man whose name could be misspelled to be the name of a sausage would be more careful. But he has been going rouge these last few days.

The funny thing is, the innocent explanation for what happened requires me to suspect that his first post was a something of a lie. The innocent explanation is: He doesn't write his own tweets. He's got a ghost-tweeter.
Mr. Weiner’s Twitter tone is strikingly punchy and personal, and sometimes juvenile....
Maybe because he's got some cheeky Harvard Lampoon-type guy tapping out the wisecracks.
He often posts several messages a day... Many are about national politics, with cheeky hashtags, like “Newt running for Prez. Mitt running from Mitt. Where to begin? #TargetRichEnvironment.” And there was “Ok let’s start with Newt. He’s the brains of the field, right? #TallestPygmy.”
So terribly clever and edgy. Why does a Congressman have time for that? Why does a Congressman have a mind for that?
The number of members of Congress who are on Twitter has more than doubled, to more than 400, since the start of this year, but the actual involvement of those members in the crafting of their messages varies widely.
So who's writing all that junk?
Mr. Weiner, a technophile, has clearly considered the role of Twitter in honing his public image, and he said in an interview earlier this month that while his Twitter stream “is usually something about the national conversation or a five- or 10-degree pivot from the national conversation,” his Twitter personality is all him. 
So he doesn't want to admit he's not writing it. You know, there's another meaning to the word "hack." There are hack writers. It's normally a noun, but I'm sure I'm not the first person to say it could work as a verb.

My Twitter account was hacked could mean: The hack writer I hired wrote the tweet.

To use this explanation, Weiner would have to concede that his clever tweets were not — or not always — his. I note that he could use this explanation even if it isn't true. Get some 21-year-old fall guy to say he got drunk and let his crush on that cute girl in Seattle go to his head.

85 comments:

Comrade X said...

the most likely reality is that A. Weiner is a pervert and belongs on a sex offender registry.

Curious George said...

I suppose aliens taking over the body of his hack ghost writer would also be an possible innocent explanation.

Fred4Pres said...

It is not a felony till he posts a false police report. Hence the reason one will not be forthcoming.

Yes this is a news story now because rather than saying it was a stupid joke and moving on he tried to cover it up. The attorney is on board to help him from screwing up further.

Anthony Weiner does remind me of the Dentist in Hangover 2.

Fred4Pres said...

Bridesmaids is a far better movie, BTW.

G Joubert said...

Not a bad theory. But who is in the picture? Weiner or not? Does the co-ed in Seattle thinks she's tweeting with Weiner or with the hired help?

Henry said...

I really can't stand the @ sign moniker nor the text-messaging abbreviations, nor the # sign camel-case salutation. Twitter is not for me.

The problem with u for "you" and r for "are" isn't the abbreviation, it is that the ease of such abbreviations kills creative style.

yr obdt svt, Henry

Ricardo said...

What is it about New York and sex?

There's another arrest of a foreign businessman attacking a maid. This time at The Pierre.

J Lee said...

I don't think you're taking the congressman's massive ego into account here. While he might have an aide writing boilerplate tweets about the political topic of the day, the ones in this case are of a far more localized nature (as in, who cares what time it is in Seattle?). If someone else was posting such banal and non-essential tweets under Weiner's name because they had authorization to do so by the congressman, it should be easy for him to ID that person and let the public know they've been fired.

More likely, and even if some aide did have tweeting privleges under Anthony's name, he enjoyed having his ego digitally stroked by an impressionable college student with impressive assets, and tweeted the photo to try and make his own impression (he does seem to be the type who would believe a woman would be impressed by the cleverness of a shot of Anthony's wiener, since the guy no doubt has had to put up with 40-plus years of people associating the name and the appendage).

Lincolntf said...

"The problem with u for "you" and r for "are" isn't the abbreviation, it is that the ease of such abbreviations kills creative style."

I find the opposite to be true. When reduced to 140 characters or less, creativity is a must. Brevity, soul of wit, etc.

Scott M said...

is usually something about the national conversation or a five- or 10-degree pivot from the national conversation

Just wtf does that really mean and how could you possibly quantify it without looking sophomoric.

garage mahal said...

Who knew conservatives favorite thing to talk about was Anthony Weiner's dick. I wouldn't necessarily say you're "gay" gay, but probably some latent homosexual desires? I don't know, just weird and gross.

Der Hahn said...

Plausible on the surface given the parallel to the Edwards-Hunter situtaion. However once you start thinking it through it's as lame as his claim to being hacked.

IIRC impersonating a Congressman is felony right?

Unlike Edwards Congressman Hot Dog doesn't have enough scratch to compensate somebody for taking that fall, plus can you imagine the clout you'd have being a paternity test away from destroying a Presidency?

Scott M said...

Disingenuous, GM. What I'm interested in is whether a senator thinks he's better and smarter than everyone else. I care not a whip about his whip.

Lincolntf said...

I'm very interested in the character and psychological makeup of Anthony Weiner. He's the point man for the Dem Party and as such serves a great example of their leadership. I unbderstand the need for GM, retread, etc. to be dominated and abused by politicians, but why do they choose the people they choose? It's a fascinating subject.

David said...

Either way, it's downhill from here for this egomaniac.

blog reeper said...

LOL... I love this... I don't think it's true but it's much better than the BreitBart hacked/photoshoped Weiner theory and Kos...

Rick said...

I thought about him claiming that an assistant did it when he stated: "I did not send the crotch shot."

RuyDiaz said...

Do pay attention to Garage. That's likely today's talking point on the lefty blogs.

You know, just the latest talking point for independent thinkers. All five million of them.

Curious George said...

"G Joubert said...
Not a bad theory. But who is in the picture? Weiner or not? Does the co-ed in Seattle thinks she's tweeting with Weiner or with the hired help?"

It's a idiotic theory. To espouse it you first have make the leap that Weiner used "hacked" as a verb in a way that has never been used...and then all his people did too. In a way that makes NO SENSE in context.

Erik said...

Nice attempt at deflection, garage, but in the end it wasn't conservatives that made Weiner's wiener a public issue. If he didn't want people talking about his shlong, he shouldn't be streaming it out over the net. Trying to blame us for talking about it is nearly as juvenile as posting the pic in the first place.

rhhardin said...

You can be innocent until you're 26 under Obamacare.

garage mahal said...

I'm very interested in the character and psychological makeup of Anthony Weiner.

Uh huh. I bet you're interested in the, *ahem*, makeup of Anthony Weiner. It's alright. It's 2011 bro.

RuyDiaz said...

It's a idiotic theory. To espouse it you first have make the leap that Weiner used "hacked" as a verb in a way that has never been used...and then all his people did too. In a way that makes NO SENSE in context.

I think Ann takes it for granted Weiner will lie. The theory is not so much innocent as plausible.

nevadabob said...

"Get some 21-year-old fall guy to say he got drunk and let his crush on that cute girl in Seattle go to his head."

Except that Twitter knows WHERE the tweets were made from ... and it was most likely from inside Anthony Weiner's own home. So, that explanation won't wash since he's been at home with his wife alone all weekend.

Weiner may very well find a fall guy to take his blame. After all, John Edwards found one and paid that fall guy hundreds of thousands of dollars. For every fawning tween "following" Anthony Weiner, there's a fawning fall guy too ... ready to fall on their sword for the fame and power he represents and whatever cash they can get out of the deal.

So, this explanation may well be soon proffered, but there will never be any evidence presented in the form of the IP address logs from Twitter and yfrog.

Because those logs would most likely show that the tweets were sent from inside Anthony Weiener's house ... from behind is router very late at night.

A smart IT worker at Twitter or yfrog would preserve those logs for just the right moment and then sell them to the news media AFTER Mr. Weiner has put forward his fake fall guy.

Why, I bet Fox News would pay six figures for the person who can supply those IP address logs.

A goldmine awaits the intelligent log jockey.

In fact, one may already be in possession of those logs just waiting for Mr. Weiner to offer this very excuse.

A smart IT worker would already have the evidence in hand ... waiting.

Shouting Thomas said...

Uh huh. I bet you're interested in the, *ahem*, makeup of Anthony Weiner. It's alright. It's 2011 bro.

It's never too early in the morning for pinhead liberals to obsess about homosexuality, is it?

Maguro said...

Yeah, I imagine that if Scott Walker had been caught sending pictures of his dick around the internets, garage would be completely uninterested. Prolly wouldn't post a single comment here about it. Cause, you know, cocks are gross and stuff and if you talk about a a politician sending dick pics around, that means you're a fag or something.

Riiiiiiiiight.

Lamest redirection attempt ever.

Henry said...

Get some 21-year-old fall guy to say he got drunk and let his crush on that cute girl in Seattle go to his head.

Pursuing that logic, perhaps his hack writer is that journalism student. She sent the picture to herself.

nevadabob said...

" ...you're "gay" gay, but probably some latent homosexual desires? I don't know, just weird and gross."

So, garage, you're saying that homosexuals are weird and gross?

I see.

Do you go to Westboro Baptist Church by any chance?

I never thought you'd become a hate-crimer just to save some no-name Democrat punk from nowhere New York.

You do realize that Ann has a son who is gay who you just said was weird and gross?

Might want to check your homophobia at the door, dude.

Henry said...

I find the opposite to be true. When reduced to 140 characters or less, creativity is a must. Brevity, soul of wit, etc.

My point is not about brevity or its opposite. It's about the lazy repetition of banal syntax.

Lincolntf said...

Yeah GM, blah blah blah...gay joke...blah blah blah.

P.S. I am now following Weiner on Twitter, so if he flashes a matching ass-shot, I'll be sure to post it for you.

Pogo said...

I heard Sen. Boehner hacked Rep. Weiner's twitter account.

So is the photo a Weiner or a Boehner?

Scott M said...

Do you go to Westboro Baptist Church by any chance?

Did you see where the KKK counter-protested the WBC? Talk about tripping over into the truly surreal...

tim maguire said...

So you're suggesting he engaged in a Clintonian lie? (A statement that is intended to mislead, while being in some strained technical sense true.)

Maybe, but it doesn't seem likely since throwing out a harmless explanation designed to sound like a serious criminal accusation would be both really clever and really stupid.

Maybe his ghost twitterer thought of it?

garage mahal said...

So, garage, you're saying that homosexuals are weird and gross?

To me, yea, dicks are gross. Just not into it. But to each their own.

Patrick said...

"I wouldn't necessarily say you're "gay" gay, but probably some latent homosexual desires? I don't know, just weird and gross."

Garage, I guess that explains it. You're a bigot.

nevadabob said...

"I am now following Weiner on Twitter, so if he flashes a matching ass-shot, I'll be sure to post it for you."

Every Democrat is being followed. EVERY. ONE. OF. THEM.

Everything they Tweet, every post they make to Facebook, every email that gets sent out automatically without their knowledge when they infect their laptops looking at porn. EVERYTHING is being copied and logged.

It's all logged with an IP address that leads right back to their location - inside their homes and inside their offices.

They created this machine. And now, they'll discover the full power of this fully operational station.

We have no intention of allowing corrupt Democrat office holders to lead lives of sexual predation, feasting on our young daughters as they turn America asunder and strip us of our God-given rights codified in the United States Constitution.

They will not enjoy their tenure in public office for one moment, and if they make ONE MISTAKE we will do everything in our power to destroy them and everything they care about.

Because that's what they do.

Get fucking used to it.

Anita said...

he enjoyed having his ego digitally stroked

Which would account for the state of his *ahem* member.

rick said...

From Iowahawk.

"The Weinergate facts, as we so far know them: on May 28, @RepWeiner, the verified Twitter account of US Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-NY), posted a tweet of a y.frog photo of a slightly-built white male straining to pitch a pup tent in a pair of grey Hanes Underoos. Within seconds, Congressman Weiner arrived at the scene of the cybercrime and instantly recognized it as the work of a hacker who had simultaneously broken into his Twitter, Facebook and y.frog accounts. Working quickly, and without regard to his own safety, Congressman Weiner used his elite law school-honed internet security coding skills to wrest back control of his accounts, delete the offending tweet and photo, as well as unfollow a Seattle coed to whom it was sent. His Twitter perimeter once again secured, the intrepid Congressmen sent out a new tweet explaining how he was victimized by an Internet criminal mastermind."

Too funny.

deborah said...

I don't see this being carried by Drudge. Did I miss it?

nevadabob said...

"To me, yea, dicks are gross. Just not into it."

Garage you're a homophobic hater. Please, go die in a fire.

Scott M said...

of this fully operational station

Hey...I'm as much a jaded ex-fan as the next geek, but let's at least get the quote right. Many Bothans died for this.

nevadabob said...

"Many Bothans died for this."

Heh.

MayBee said...

I would say a man who thinks dicks are gross has more issues than a man who can discuss their presence in a photo.

I, on the other hand, embrace my interest in them.

garage mahal said...


Garage, I guess that explains it. You're a bigot.


Really? Just because I'm not interested in the makeup of Anthony Weiner's dick?

rick said...

I am surprised there have been no "wide stance" comments.

MrBuddwing said...

The Professor wrote: Going "rouge"? You'd think a man whose name could be misspelled to be the name of a sausage would be more careful. But he has been going rouge these last few days.

Unless, of course, he was referencing Going Rouge: An American Nightmare, a book which was rushed out to satirize Sarah Palin's book, Going Rogue: An American Life.

WV: blitpi

Scott M said...

I, on the other hand, embrace my interest in them.

Well, I embrace my interest in mine. I can honestly say that my interest in any others' ends at my continued attempts to avoid any contact whatsoever.

m stone said...

I think "rouge" was intentional, a misplay on "rogue" and an anti-feminist barb (considering Palin to be more of a feminist than others credit her).

Sofa King said...

Garage, consider:

1. Not all conservatives are men
2. Nobody actually cares about the fact that you are straight
3. The pains you are going through to tell us all how very, very straight you are...well, let's just say it's a red flag.

Dutch Canuck said...

Scott M:

Did you see where the KKK counter-protested the WBC?

Never a tornado around when you really need one.

Pogo said...

Rep. Wiener is a stand-up guy, an upright House member, long staying firm in his principles, not limp or flaccid toward his ideals, but erect, never wavering, never flagging.

He's the Washington's monument of propriety.

edutcher said...

So his tweets were "cheeky".

I get it! He was telling everybody what he wants at the Memorial Day picnic!

Wiener and buns.

Sure.

And it's been so much fun watching the Lefties scream, "Breit-baaarrrrt!!!!".

garage mahal said...

Who knew conservatives favorite thing to talk about was Anthony Weiner's dick. I wouldn't necessarily say you're "gay" gay, but probably some latent homosexual desires? I don't know, just weird and gross.

And the Demos' favorite is Larry Craig's method of clearing his throat.

RuyDiaz said...

To me, yea, dicks are gross. Just not into it. But to each their own.

Is that why you cut yours Garage?

SteveR said...

Isn't his wife the HRC mystery woman?

garage mahal said...

@Sofa
Dicks and coffee not my thing. Sorry I offended those that do enjoy it.

Patrick said...

"Really? Just because I'm not interested in the makeup of Anthony Weiner's dick?"

No. Because you believe people who are different are "gross and weird."

Imagine your reaction in an honest way if anyone on the right had said that about homosexuals. Then ask yourself who are the bigots.

RuyDiaz said...

@Garage:

How about dicks and vanilla? Or dicks and chocolate?

richard mcenroe said...

That Boehner's too limp to do anything useful like that, Pogo.

Jim said...

garage is just trotting out the old Clinton defense "it's about the blowjob" when it was REALLY about felony perjury.

He doubles down on it with his "you're gay!!!!!!!!!!" commentary - revealing his own self-loathing homophobia in a lame attempt to smear others.

Perhaps someone more secure in his own sexuality wouldn't have been so quick to toss out accusations of homosexuality.

Projection....it's not just for movie theaters any more...11

Moonfeather.rift said...

Dork moment: I am picturing Garage as a Pokemon with the following attacks: Call them Racist, Call them Nazis, Call them Gay.

Hopefully someday Garage will evolve and get a better set of attack upgrades.

Ned said...

Or he could be a liberal and therefore lies knowing others will stretch credulity to cover for him...maybe...

Scott M said...

Dork moment: I am picturing Garage as a Pokemon with the following attacks: Call them Racist, Call them Nazis, Call them Gay.

Ugh. You could have at least used M:TG instead of Pokemon.

William said...

Weiner is quick witted and has an excellent sense of humor. I don't share his political views, but he's funny and likable. The twitter quips sound like him. I suppose it's possible that he has an aide with a similar and even better sense of humor to whom he has delegated that responsibility. OK, stranger things have happened, but it does seem far fetched. A ghost writer for a twitter account feels vaguely fraudulent and way too calculated. On the other hand, never underestimate either phoniness or horniness of people in public life.

holdfast said...

So who's writing all that junk?

I thought the question was: who is tweeting their junk?

Methadras said...

So then why did Seattle girl disable her accounts? Why did Weiner start disabling his? I've already shown you the links where this has occurred.

Methadras said...

garage mahal said...

Who knew conservatives favorite thing to talk about was Anthony Weiner's dick. I wouldn't necessarily say you're "gay" gay, but probably some latent homosexual desires? I don't know, just weird and gross.


Not well played tard. That schtick is played out, like the rest of you.

Methadras said...

http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2011/05/complete-weinergate-timeline-crack.html

Again, Weiner has a serious problem on his hands to explain the timeline.

Freeman Hunt said...

Get some 21-year-old fall guy to say he got drunk and let his crush on that cute girl in Seattle go to his head.

Yup. This is what I suggested yesterday, late in the comments.

"Thank you for doing this. It really shows that you're a team player. I won't forget that. In fact, how about if you come along to lunch with me tomorrow. I'll introduce you to some people."

DaveW said...

I'm not buying that a ghostwriter did this. That is in no way a likely plausible explanation. Someone hired (or unpaid but trusted) to tweet for the weiner would not send lewd pictures in his name to unknown 21 year old females.

Nor would it explain the girl deleting her account.

Scott M said...

Nor would it explain the girl deleting her account.

The two things are mutually dependent, are they? She could have lopped off her cyber-self simply due to the national attention.

Sigivald said...

If Weiner is lying about his accounts getting hacked, he could be sued by Twitter (and the other companies) for defamation.

How would that work?

By which I mean, where's the defamation of Twitter?

Anyone's account on pretty much any service can get "hacked"* if they have a bad password or someone gets access to the machine they log in from; this is not a reflection on Twitter as a company in any way.

(* Random guessing of a bad password is about the least useful use of "hacked" ever, short of the idea that your Facebook account was "hacked" if you opened a webpage that faked a "like" click but never compromised your account credentials or session in any way.)

Ann Althouse said...

"I think "rouge" was intentional, a misplay on "rogue" and an anti-feminist barb (considering Palin to be more of a feminist than others credit her)."

A Democrat calling himself red, in French, on purpose? Too stupid. Misspelling is less stupid. But if you want to go with the stupider explanation, have at it.

Ann Althouse said...

And the statement is "Going rouge over here. Starting to twitter w/o telling my minders." He's breaking free of his "minders," which is what "going rogue" means. Why would he bring in "rouge," which would have to do with wearing makeup or actually being like Sarah Palin, with the added downside of suggesting Communism?

deborah said...

Also meant to conjure the image of a pig with lipstick, perhaps?

gutless said...

Most likely the Penis-o-Gram was in response to a spicy photo from Miss Washington not the opening gambit. This whole affair would benefit from context. It is doubtless much rougher than what we know now.

HT said...

This is getting out of hand. I can't believe you're still at it.

First AA notes the horror on display during the interview (it wasn't an interview) between Meghan Kelly and Anthony Weiner. They both come off looking like asses. So why is it that now Ann thinks it's this giant leap to go from there to twittering a photo of his erection? Not to mention all the other juvenile things he twitters (comments on etc)? Did she even watch the interview? If she had, 'stately' is not one adjective that would have come to mind. I don't know, it's just that if you watch that so-called ambition/aggression-fest on Fox, the things you then find out that he's been twittering should not be that surprising.

I think of all the guesses that have been posted on here, Freeman Hunt's prediction of what could happen (and therefore what has happened) rings truest to me.

Carol_Herman said...

You know, the picture, itself has seen the light of day. And, in my opinion, Anthony Weiner's biggest problem is that the picture shows a man with a very small dick.

At least Algore stuck a pair of sox down his pants.

You also have to throw out the test, that if a man has a large nose, then he's gonna have a long dick, too.

Maybe, Weiner can say that it proves the man in the underpants isn't his.

Gene said...

Garage Mahal: Who knew conservatives favorite thing to talk about was Anthony Weiner's dick."

Well they don't. What they do want to talk about though is his lewd nature, electronic infidelity and the mainstream media's apparent willingness to gladly go along with his cover-up--something they'd never do if a married Republican was emailing crotch shots to college coeds on the other side of the country.

HT said...

Check out what Ann just posted of that mainstream media.

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