I’ve been watching this howling gaggle all summer*. First it was my “Rush Limbaugh” comments, then, the “Ted Nugent” stuff, and then I watched the “Private Beauchamp” fiasco. And, at that point, a pattern began to emerge. Several patterns, in fact, but this one, in particular, is interesting.
(*If you need to get up to speed, see this morning’s posting, “Betray Us, Petraeus? Righties Can’t Seem To ‘Move On” which has links to all the current events referenced herein.)
Now, using their patented method, they — the rightie blogosmear — jumped on the “MoveOn” ad in the New York Times with a vengeance (I mean that literally). The first group, the astroturf vetsforfreedom.org — about which I intended to write this morning, and will probably bump to tomorrow — showed up, made their little splash, and then the Usual Suspects jumped in. It’s a loosely affiliated group, but I noticed all summer how they would collectively “swarm” the link on Memeorandum so as to “push” their story to the top — no matter whether it had anything to do with “reality.”
As they’ve done today. Here’s the snapshot from RIGHT NOW. I was waiting for Michelle Malkin to get in there and finish the set, but she’s off trying to hump the going-nowhere story about John Hsu, attempting to spot-weldo Hillary Clinton to Hsu at the hip (having succeeded in getting Clinton’s campaign to give Hsu’s $850,000 donation to charity. If you recall the term from Nixon’s 1972 campaign: the bloggers are the new ratfuckers.) The old “guilt by association thing.” Were that true, then all Christians would be Judas, of course, but some people keep drinking the Koolaid.
Now, Butt Plug Bob at Connecticut Yankee has earned his sobriquet once more. I saw the story when it showed up three days ago, as paranoid old Bob, digging into the internets (sic) came up with a bit of hard evidence, some deductive reasoning, and a badly flawed conclusion (because his premise was to PROVE wrongdoing, and, therefore, he FOUND wrongdoing).
As you’ll note, the Weekly Standard’s blogger, Bill Roggio, has confirmed MY deductive conclusion (HERE) that today’s New York Post story — TIMES GIVES LEFTIES A HEFTY DISCOUNT FOR ‘BETRAY US’ AD — originated with Butt Plug Bob. Well, the blogosmear got to work, and they’re all swarming on it like flies on … er, like bees to honey.
It is important that you know this: Butt Plug Bob gets his nickname from the paranoid fantasy he created after he Googled “baby jesus”(sic) on Christmas Eve 2005. At the top of the page, there was a “Baby Jesus Butt Plug” dildo. Bob took this “evidence,” added a bit of “War-On-Christmas” fantasy, some seemingly-deductive reasoning (“seemingly” because he had already come to his conclusion and was reasoning backwards from it, as with Creationism, and Intelligent Design) and he came up with this:
Google Mocks Christ on Christmas Eve
While trying to find a nativity image for my last post before Christmas, I did an search for “baby jesus” on Google.
This is the result.
Bob then includes a screen shot of the search, and the number one link is a Baby Jesus Butt Plug. OK. Well and good. Most of us would say, “Somebody’s got ISSUES,” and move on. But Bob couldn’t MOVE ON. No. This is where the logic train goes off the tracks:
Notice that the top search result is for a sex toy that mocks Jesus.
Other results on this search results page have more link traffic. A quick review of page’s code shows no HTML meta information that should give it a favorable ranking. The page itself has a raw relevance ranking (search word divided by total words) of less than five percent. The only conclusion I can draw is that this page position ranking was done manually by a Google staffer.
Google’s message to the Faithful seems obvious:
“Merry Christmas, assholes.”
Now, some folks obviously write to Bob, suggesting that his conclusion might be a wee bit skewed. He responds with this update:
Update: Some folks have made the argument that this is the result of Googlebombing or other SEO tricks. Others say that it is merely the result of Google’s search programs. They would absolve Google of all responsibility.
I do not.
Google’s algorithms are man-made, coded by human programmers, as are any exclusionary protocols. These people ultimately decide if search results are relevant. I think it is fair to say that a butt plug is not a relevant search result for 99-percent of Google users searching for information on Jesus Christ as a baby.
So either Google has manipulative coders, or a fouled algorithm in their baseline technologies that suggests their massive capitalization is based upon a a house of cards. I’ll leave individual readers and investors to make the call.
All right: he’s going “prove” logically that he MUST be right, and everyone else is wrong. Bob has left the reality track and seems to be in a ‘special’ fantasyland of his own devising, where Google executives sit around nights, thinking: “How can we destroy Christmas?” (There is no indication HOW Bob knows this. He just DOES.) And he’s PROUD of his paranoia. See what comes NEXT:
Update 2: Crooks and Liars calls this post 2005’s Worst Post of the Year. Coming from such a den of delusion and paranoia (not to mention abject political failure), I consider it a compliment.
Also, I guess he didn’t see this, though technically it isn’t a blog post, just the worst idea of the year.
I’ll save you the trouble. He offers a Black newspaper naming Louis Farrakhan their “Man of the Year.” Let’s skip over the implications of a White North Carolinian suggesting that Crooks & Liars ought to be going after a black newspaper that says anything nice about Farrakhan. It’s a non-sequitur and a damned WEIRD defense , stereotypes notwithstanding.
Worse, he WON’T LET GO of his hypothesis, looney and minor (even if true) months later. Here is the final update:
Good Friday Update: As I said previously:
Google’s algorithms are man-made, coded by human programmers, as are any exclusionary protocols. These people ultimately decide if search results are relevant.
A current Google search reveals that Google has changed their search algorithm to exclude the sex toy site from at least their top 50 results in a unfiltered search. I was right, liberals were wrong.
Not that this comes as a shock to anyone…
Yes, Virginia. He quotes HIMSELF on April 14, 2006 (I looked it up), still justifying his Google Anti-Christmas conspiracy theory one hundred and eleven days later. Which means that Butt Plug Bob is both quick to come up with unsubstantiated conspiracy theories and SLOW to give them up (if ever.)
This would all seem trivial, had the exact same process not taken place over the past three days. On September 10, Butt Plug Bob decides to see whether the New York Times ad rate is the same as the stated price that MoveOn paid for the “Petraeus Betray us” ad. It isn’t. He immediate concludes that, like Google, he can DIVINE the New York Times‘ hidden intentions. Only this time, because of his pivotal role in the Private Beauchamp matter (General Petraeus’ communications officer, Col. Stephen Boylan wrote to Butt Plug Bob to “confirm” that Beauchamp had allegedly recanted and everything was false) the WHOLE rightie blogosmear jumps on the bandwagon, and then the dominoes begin to fall.
Nobody’s bothered questioning the paranoid reasoning. They just want in on the “action,” i.e. the conclusion that The New York Times is SUBSIDIZING the MoveOn ad. Note that at least the talk radio Bill O’Reilly is in on it too. Faux Nooz will probably have Brent Bozell on for Newsbusters tonight. Let’s see. [UPDATE 12:28 AM PDT Sept. 14: YUP!]
Except … whoops.
Posted September 13, 2007 | 01:27 PM (EST)
Despite what journalist Bill O’Reilly said today on his radio show about MoveOn.org receiving a special discount rate for their NY Time’s General Petreaus display ad, based on the fact that the Times is in bed with Moveon.org and George Soros.Referring to a report from ABC’s Jake Tapper, he said that Moveon.org received a 65% discount as a “family discount,” because the Times and Moveon are in bed with each other; that “if you’re a left-wing smear site the Times will give you a discount.” My guess is that his 65% discount came from a misread of a right wing web site.Problem is, Bill O’Reilly could get the same rate OR LOWER!So says, Katherine Mathis, Vice President of Corporate Communications at the Times.
“It’ has nothing to do with ideology,” said Mathis today, “It has to do with the day it appears and how it is placed.”
The Times advertising department categorized the Moveon’s ad as an “advocacy” (cause and appeal) ad, and the rate isn’t based on which side of the political aisle you’re on. It depends on any number of factors, includingwhether the ad is in color or black&white and manner of placement.
Bill said that others who advertise in the Times are going to be up in arms to find out how Moveon.org. received the special rate.
All they have to do is contact the Times. They’ll be glad to take your money and place your ad. If you want to leave the day and section placement a bit loose, you might get the same rate or better than MoveOn did.
Even you, Bill.
And you don’t even have to crawl in bed with George Soros.
BTW, Bill said his people can’t get an answer from the Times. I made one call.
Spreading a story before he substantiates it. Some journalist.
And Eric Alterman:
Topic: Letters Sent to Romenesko
Date/Time: 9/13/2007 2:58:49 PM
Title: Common practice
Posted By: Jim Romenesko
From ERIC ALTERMAN: Subject: MoveOn ad. For the record, four years ago, a foundation purchased a full-page ad in the Times for my book, “What Liberal Media?” Because the foundation worked through a public relations agency that buys many such advertisements with the Times, the price was considerably less expensive than the quoted rate. This is common practice in the advertising business and I would not be surprised if MoveOn.org used the same firm or one with a similar arrangement. It’s open to conservatives as well and easily researched by reporters. [Permalink]
That’s gotta sting.
And here’s Jim Romanesco, on the Poynter Institute blog (Poynter is a foundation dedicated to journalistic ethics. They were, ironically, the source quoted by the AP to talk about how “unethical” Private Beauchamp’s “anonymity” was in writing his “Baghdad Diary.” Guess the sword cuts both ways:
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 13, 2007
NYT: Ad discount for MoveOn.org doesn’t reflect political bias
Reuters | New York Post | Romenesko Letters
MoveOn.org confirms it paid $65,000 to the New York Times for its full page “General Betray Us” ad, while the Times says the open rate for an ad of that size and type is $181,692. Times spokeswoman Catherine Mathis says: “We do not distinguish the advertising rates based on the political content of the ad.” She says lower rates are given to advertisers buying in bulk or taking a standby rate. Posted at 3:01:59 PM
The simple fact is that we could go on and on (as I already have) but now the Rightie wingnuts have painted themselves into a corner. Having bought Butt Plug Bob’s paranoid fantasy, they have to pretend that it’s a FACT, and you’ll probably see the waters muddied quite a bit in the days to follow. It ought to be pretty damned funny.
And it adds the exclamation point to what I’ve been documenting all summer: they think that facts are whatever they SAY they are!
Nope. “Facts,” as John Adams famously noted in the Boston Massacre trial “are stubborn things.” And the Brotherhood of Drooling Wingnuts stand exposed for what they really are: a mindless mob of screaming ratfuckers, advancing an agenda of data destruction, devious disinformation and diabolical disputation.
But right now, please realize that virtually the entire Rightie Blogosmear is standing with its metaphorical pants around its collective ankles.
Were I in their shoes, I would be very concerned as to how Butt Plug Bob got his nickname.
UPDATE – 6:40 PM PDT: As predicted, the Righties have realized the desperate position their hate offensive is in if, in fact, they DIDN’T find the NYT giving special treatment to MoveOn. Thus, the desperate battle over the disputed fact begins. They’ve brought up the heavy blog firepower.
This sounds eerily like the beginning of the Beauchamp saga over at the Weekly Standard on July 18:
The National Review Online: THE CORNER
Thursday, September 13, 2007
MoveOn Story Doesn’t Pass the Smell Test [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
AP reports that MoveOn did not get special treatment. Rather, MoveOn “received the rate of $64,575 that the newspaper charges for a special advocacy, full-page, black and white, standby ad.”
How was it a “standby” ad? On Sunday we read that it would run Monday and the ad that appeared on Monday said the testimony was happening “today.” A lot of people seemed to know ahead of time the exact day the ad would run. What exactly does “standby” mean? This doesn’t sound like what any normal person would consider “standby” to mean.
Of course. You wouldn’t want to admit that Butt Plug Bob’s fantastic conclusion got you all to board a bus that he then drove over a cliff, do you? You have entirely too much invested in this gratuituous attack on the New York Times to back off now. Now you’ve got to hope that the other media turn on the Times like the other TV networks turned on Dan Rather.
You’ve got the people to do it. Little Green Footballs can go on about proportional fonts, and Rick Sanchez can ask the forces at advance firebases what they think the New York Times charges for ad space. I empathize with your plight. But here’s a successful “fact” manufacturing campaign you can model your attacks on. And the plus side is most of the major players are in this one up to their eyebrows already anyway:
When I saw this, I thought it was a total fabrication. It just does not pass the smell test…. Like Macbeth’s lies, this is so far-fetched as to be incredible to anyone who is remotely familiar with military culture. But, the TNRs of the world lap it up.
Hail Hail, the gang’s all here!
Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you one of the most amazing freaks of nature ever recorded: a buffoon (a claque, a clutch, a falsepride?) of angry Republicans bitterly upset that someone got a good deal on a purchase.