Saturday, September 15, 2007

ding ding ding.. 12 rounds with jane hamsher

I had to overcome a conflict of interest tonight. On the one hand, the Moveon ad was stupid. On the other hand, Jane Hamsher is a wottie.. that is, a wonky hottie.

In one corner, Jane:
Dear Mrs. Edwards,

You’re a smart woman. You of all people should know about the asymmetrical intimidation problem that Paul Krugman talks about — the one where the media is afraid to go after Rudy Guiliani for claiming he’s a rescue worker, but they’ll try to demolish your husband over a haircut because they know that they’ll get swarmed by the right wing noise machine for the former and pay no price for the latter. That’s how it works.

So I was really disappointed today to read at Taylor Marsh’s place that you had joined with Diaper Dave Vitter and John “McCarthy” McCain to attack MoveOn. We (and by that I mean the netroots) defend you when the MSM try to make your campaign a pinata over stupid, insignificant stuff. When they try to say your race should end because of your illness, but don’t say squat about Fred Thompson’s lymphoma. We’re your first line of defense, the only messaging machine that progressives have.

And in the other corner, schwifty:

So Jane, basically the gist of your post is that the merits and principles behind what “we” say are subordinate to the tactic [of] turning up the dial on our own echo chamber? A bit of realpolitik for the campaign trail, then.. but as a tree hugging far left liberal myself, I was astonished at moveon for stooping to Ann Coulter’s level. Accusing a military officer of betrayal is tantamount to accusing him of treason, and regardless of whether he is a willing hostage of Bush’s tactic to hide behind his medals, you don’t shoot the hostage. Whatever happened to defeating the enemy without becoming like them?

It's nice to be back in the trolling game.. er, i mean blogging, or whatever the kids are calling it these days. Well.. maybe not trolling per se (as I actually believe what I wrote), but this just takes me back to the good old early internet days of epic debate on such topics as creationism, macs vs. pcs, gaming guilds...

Anyway, the discussion is long but worth checking out. FDL and Jane are awesome, but there's nothing like busting up a little groupthink dynamic. I wish more of these blogging sites relied on nested commenting and such for threaded discussions a la k5. I hear dailykos runs on scoop but the signal to noise ratio is too low for me there.


Anonymous said...

Hi - I tend to avoid getting involved in the kind of comment thread this post addresses, but did want to offer a note of support to the point you were making there, so I was glad to see the chance to do that here at your blog. I noticed that at least one other comment supported you (though there may have been more) so you can count this as another.

Swifty said...

Thanks. The fact that you're posting anonymously says it all about the cheerleading echo chamber that the top blogs have become, and Jane's defense of her own post was somewhat less than inspiring (particularly when she misrepresented what I said). As we progressives really start maneuvering back into power, driven to some extent by the "new media" watchdogs, it's beginning to become important to ask, quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (Yes, I read Asterix and Obelix).