Perhaps we should hire this incompetent fellow who hates us

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Barrett Brown

I am the founder of the distributed think-tank Project PM and a regular inactive to Vanity Fair and Skeptical Inquirer. My work has also appeared in The Onion, National Lampoon, New York Press, D Magazine, Skeptic, McSweeney's, American Atheist, and a couple of newspapers in the U.S. and Mexico as well as a few policy journals. I'm the author of two books and serve as a consultant to various political entities and private clients.

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44 Responses

  1. Avatar Katherine
    Ignored
    says:

    In my opinion, any American television station would be vastly improved by hiring any of the contributors to this blog as a political analyst.Report

  2. Avatar Matt
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    says:

    I’m as annoyed as the next fellow when I turn on CNN’s election coverage and see Erick Erickson described as the “editor” of his blog, Redstate, but giving Breitbart a role in the mainstream is the best, quickest way to ruin his outsider appeal, so for that reason, I favor his hiring.Report

  3. Avatar Christopher Carr
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    says:

    I recommend trolling Breitbart on Twitter. Sometimes he responds in hilariously characteristic fashion.Report

  4. Avatar Joe Carter
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    says:

    The League has always been one of my favorite blogs. But every time I read Mr. Brown’s posts I have to check URL again to make sure I didn’t stumble onto the Daily Kos.Report

    • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
      Ignored
      says:

      @Joe Carter, I feel the same way about First Things, except I often have to check the URL to see if I’m reading some sort of fascist website run by a gaggle of historically illiterate zeta males, and it always turns out that, yes, I am.Report

    • Avatar Elvis Elvisberg in reply to Joe Carter
      Ignored
      says:

      @Joe Carter,

      You’re of the view that Erick Erickson and Ben Domenech are good representatives of conservatism in the MSM, I take it? Why do you think so?Report

      • Avatar Joe Carter in reply to Elvis Elvisberg
        Ignored
        says:

        @Elvis Elvisberg, Erick Erickson is a contributor to obscure cable show that no one watches. That hardly makes him a significant “representative of conservatism in the MSM.”

        And Ben Domench was a blogger for the Washington Post for a few days in 2006. Is that really the most relevant example Brown could find?

        And isn’t it a bit silly to whine about a blogger who plagiarized a movie review when he was in college when the Vice President of the United States plagiarized a law review article while in law school? If Domenech is to be shunned from public life, why not Biden?Report

        • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
          Ignored
          says:

          @Joe Carter, It sounds like you are interested in a more formal debate on the subject – perhaps one in which both of us would agree to post the other’s argument on our respective venues? I can do it here or at Vanity Fair if you’d like. The important thing is that your audience will be exposed to my points and my audience will be exposed to yours. If you agree, let me know.Report

        • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
          Ignored
          says:

          @Joe Carter, You have again resorted to a transparent trick that’s not going to work against this crowd, which is singling out a lesser criticism I have made of your ideological ally in order to pretend that it is the whole of my case. Domenech did not just plagiarize a film review; he tried to blame an innocent person for his own misdeeds, among other things.

          Meanwhile, I chose those two examples not because they are hugely prominent, but because they are examples of other conservative bloggers whom the MSM have foolishly tried to treat as ethical competent people and who have proven themselves to be nothing of the sort. This is obvious to anyone who actually cares to follow my argument.

          Also, last week Jim Hoft ran a piece justifying the stomping of a female, and your commenters… better yet, I would love nothing more to discuss then in another, more prominent context. I will debate anything you like. Suffice to say for now that you have zero credibility as an arbiter of the discourse.Report

          • Avatar Joe Carter in reply to Barrett Brown
            Ignored
            says:

            @Barrett Brown, You still seem to have missed the point. Domenech was hired to write an obscure blog for the Washington Post. He was quickly fired when it was discovered he had plagiarized some reviews when he was a freshman in college. Many people criticized him at the time—including me. But that was four years ago.

            I suspect you are not as outraged by the presence of Andrew Sullivan at The Atlantic. Sullivan has lied and slandered about his opponents (mainly Sarah Palin) for years and yet he gets a pass. Why the double standard? (I mean that rhetorically. I know why: Because he will send blogs like this one a significant amount of traffic.)

            This is obvious to anyone who actually cares to follow my argument.

            You didn’t make an argument; you made a profanity-laced rant.

            Suffice to say for now that you have zero credibility as an arbiter of the discourse.

            Dude, grow up. I know you are probably a young writer struggling for relevance and think the best way to do that is to thump your chest and issue challenges. There is nothing to debate. Political discourse in this country has been debased by both conservatives and liberals. But while most people on the League recognize that and do their part to change it, you come storming in like some obscure diarist from the Daily Kos who thinks he’s making a brilliant point by dumping on Ben Domenech. (Seriously, that’s old news to those who didn’t join the interwebs last week.)Report

            • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
              Ignored
              says:

              @Joe Carter, You have just criticized me for referencing an old story, Domenech’s plagiarism, in reference to a new incident, Breitbart’s ABC flap. A few minutes ago, you referenced an old story, Biden’s plagiarism, in reference to a new incident, my bringing up of Domenech’s plagiarism.

              Please debate me. I apologize for being rude to you. I will pray to Jesus right now that you will decide to debate me.Report

            • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
              Ignored
              says:

              @Joe Carter, As for Sullivan, you would have to point to an actual incident for me to criticize it rather than just having me take your word for it. I’m sure you’re entirely trustworthy as well as intellectually honest with yourself and would never misidentify something as something else, but I suffer from an abundance of caution.Report

        • Avatar Elvis Elvisberg in reply to Joe Carter
          Ignored
          says:

          @Joe Carter,

          Barrett’s point is that the MSM is all too willing to choose frothing-at-the-mouth ignoramuses as go-to conservative commentators.

          You can claim that the MSM is dumb and that the Vice President is a poopyhead, but that’s really neither here nor there.

          If mainstream conservatism were interested in improving the quality of its thinking and discourse, we would see many conservatives decrying the oozing up of Breitbart, Domenech, and Erickson; instead, we get chants of “One of us! One of us!”, and pleading to maintain the soft bigotry of low expectations for conservative argumentation.

          Perhaps you are of the view that Breitbart, Domenech, and Erickson are fine exemplars of conservative discourse. You are free to make that case.Report

          • Avatar Joe Carter in reply to Elvis Elvisberg
            Ignored
            says:

            Let me see if I can come up with an alternate phrasing of your complaint:

            “If mainstream liberalism were interested in improving the quality of its thinking and discourse, we would see many liberalism decrying the oozing up of Barrett Brown, Dave Weigel, and Andrew Sullivan; instead, we get chants of “One of us! One of us!”, and pleading to maintain the soft bigotry of low expectations for liberal argumentation.”

            Yep, that’s fitting.

            Perhaps you are of the view that Breitbart, Domenech, and Erickson are fine exemplars of conservative discourse. You are free to make that case.

            No, that is not my case. In case it isn’t clear let me state it plainly: Breitbart, Domenech, and Erickson aren’t exemplars of anything. Combined they don’t have that much influence. (More than I do, of course, but that isn’t saying much.) They have fewer people pay attention to them in a year than Andrew Sullivan or Keith Olbermann do in a week.

            I’m not making an argument of equivalency, I’m not saying “They’re bad, we can be bad too.” No, what I’m saying is that if Brown truly cared about the quality of thinking and discourse he aim at some bigger targets—and provide examples that weren’t almost five years old.Report

            • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
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              says:

              @Joe Carter, I love that you have written that list sentence, as I have indeed aimed “at some bigger targets” and provided more recent examples, and have done so literally on hundreds of occasions. I also have a book coming out in which I attack Thomas Friedman, Richard Cohen, Charles Krauthammer, and others – some of the biggest targets one can name, you see. I have appeared on various programs to denounce all sorts of media figures and politicians – in fact, I went on Fox News and attacked Obama just last year, and more recently I was on Russia Today to attack the entirety of the American media (and then Putin for good measure, before they cut me off). So, based on parameters you yourself have chosen, I do truly care about the quality of thinking and discourse. I have even founded an organization to do just that – you may notice the symbol that appears here next to my name, which is our logo.

              So, what’s your next move, friend?Report

            • Avatar Elvis Elvisberg in reply to Joe Carter
              Ignored
              says:

              @Joe Carter,

              Barrett Brown, Dave Weigel, and Andrew Sullivan

              But… none of those people are liberals. And liberals love to dump on Andrew Sullivan, anyway. Aside from being irrelevant, what a strange remark.

              The “take on the real problem when it matters” version of ad hominem that you’re advancing works to an extent, if there’s reason to believe that the speaker has avoided making the bigger arguments. (I’ve heard that kind of argument made against, say, Glenn Reynolds, who claims to be a pro-gay rights libertarian, but never ever links to pro-gay rights articles or op-eds). But it’s not clear to me that that’s a fair criticism of Barrett Brown.Report

        • Avatar DMD in reply to Joe Carter
          Ignored
          says:

          @Joe Carter, earlier THIS YEAR Ben Domenech was the CBS.com blogger who planted the rumor Elena Kagan was a lesbian, and then promptly went “oops! I thought she was out!” when the White House denied it. Classy.Report

  5. Avatar Joe Carter
    Ignored
    says:

    Thanks for making my point. I was trying to be polite and point out that you are an embarrassment to this fine blog without actually saying that in so many words. Turns out I didn’t need to. You were apparently willing to show that you are just another frothing at the mouth partisan.Report

    • Avatar Katherine in reply to Joe Carter
      Ignored
      says:

      So, rather than offering a reasoned defence of of Breitbart, Domench, or Erickson (assuming such could be done), you reply with insults – and yes, your first post was an insult despite having a politer tone.

      Everything I’ve seen of the abovenamed right-wing bloggers suggests Brown is correct in his assessment. Sometimes intelligent commentary means calling out foolishness and lies where they appear rather than pretending they constitute useful debate.Report

      • Avatar Joe Carter in reply to Katherine
        Ignored
        says:

        @Katherine, As I pointed out in my reply to Elvis, Ben Domench was a blogger for the Washington Post for a few days in 2006. To bring that up now just shows that Brown had to dig deep to find a example that fits his polemical purposes.

        Also, its a an insult to intelligent commentary to imply that Brown’s screed is “intelligent commentary.” I realize that he’s probably having a bad night. But the League has tended to have higher standards than he’s exhibited in his short time here.Report

    • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
      Ignored
      says:

      @Joe Carter, You weren’t trying to be polite, but rather making a transparent attempt to make me look bad. You are lying, priest. Think to your immortal soul.Report

  6. Avatar Joe Carter
    Ignored
    says:

    Mr. Brown,

    I’m not sure why it won’t let me respond to your comment above (is there a limit to the number of threads that can be created?) so I’ll reply here.

    both of us would agree to post a quote on our respective venues (this one in my case; VF can probably feature the debate, and I will ask the editor about it tomorrow).

    What sort of quote did you have in mind? Something from each of us or a quote from someone else (e.g., a historical figure) that represents a particular view?

    Also, I’d be happy to have the discussion take place between this blog and mine at FT. No offense to VF, but I’d be more interested in what LoOG readers thought of the debate.

    I will pick a quote and you will promise to post it, and you may pick any quote and I will post it here. Perhaps the choice of quotes will provide us with material to start with, as this is a broad topic.Report

    • Avatar Barrett Brown in reply to Joe Carter
      Ignored
      says:

      @Joe Carter, Although I was thinking specifically of historical figures, any quote at all will be fine, just to get things rolling. Very well, I’ll conduct my portion from this blog rather than VF, as this might work better in terms of format anyway.

      To the extent that we need advance agreement on format, perhaps we could agree to this – after the respective quote posting, we will go three rounds, with each round consisting of a post on each side, and both of us posting the entirety of the other person’s post on our respective outlets along with our own. After those three rounds, either of us may decide to honorably conclude the debate – or, if both of us agree that we would like to continue, then we can do so under agreed circumstances. Let me know if this works for you and if there is a particular day on which you’d like to start that would work best with your schedule.Report

  7. Avatar Francis
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    says:

    Wow, this turned ugly quickly. Not the best demonstration of this blog’s unwritten rule of attack the argument, not the person.Report

  8. Avatar Good Grief, The Comedian's Incompetent
    Ignored
    says:

    “these fucking people” don’t think much of you fucking people either.Report

  9. Avatar Jaybird
    Ignored
    says:

    I have conservative friends. I have liberal friends.

    I have been telling them the same thing today:

    “This too shall pass.”

    Well, I’ve also talked about Hitler.Report

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