Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The mugging that never happened, and the mugging that did

An open letter to the conservative blogosphere, in regard to the whole Randi Rhodes brewhaha yesterday:

Okay, we screwed the pooch on that one. There appears to be no mugging. No creepy conservative goons lurking in the shadows beating up defenseless women (at least not in this case). We got our information from a credible source, Jon Elliott, who got his own wires crossed and jumped to conclusions on an opinionated talk show. From there, it trickled down to Democratic Underground and Daily Kos, then to Talking Radio and everywhere else. One of your own, Matt Drudge, even linked it.

I put up my initial entry early in the morning. I wasn't so sure about the whole hate crime angle, as there was no suspect, no evidence, and not even a police report. But people were talking about it, so I wrote about it.

Nicole Sandler, morning host at WINZ in Miami, dedicated most of her show to it, as she furiously tried to get confirmation of the incident. The blogosphere exploded with coverage. Hey, many of you guys even believed it, so what does that say?

Once the suits at Air America Radio arrived at work, they quickly issued a press release downplaying the incident, as details were a bit sketchy. Then, reporters at a few New York newspapers made some calls, to the NYPD, Rhodes' lawyer and Air America. There appears to have been no mugging, and things were blown out of proportion. Rhodes was seriously hurt in an accident, but no foul play seems to have taken place.

Later, Elliott himself issued an apology, "I shouldn’t have speculated based on hearsay that Randi Rhodes had been mugged and that it may have been an attack from a right wing hate machine. I apologize for jumping to conclusions based on an emotional reaction. I wish Randi nothing but the best and look forward to a speedy recovery." So basically, Elliott, a rather fiery, passionate guy who unfortunately doesn't get a whole lotta love from many on our side since he's still unfairly viewed as The Guy Who Replaced Mike Malloy, acted out of emotion. Obviously he was wrong, but this stuff happens. And yes, many of us admitted we screwed up as well. Personally, I made it a point to do so immediately when I saw the Daily News account.

But this wasn't enough. Oh no. You guys in the conservative blogosphere were crapping mountains with glee, wagging those self-important fingers with false pride about 'dem librulz is lyers.' What one will see, in browsing your various wingnut screech blogs, is a lot of crowing headlines like these:

Randi Rhodes wasn’t mugged, Air America credibility plunges to NYTimes stock-level depths
Air America Radio Host Mugged, Liberals Blame Conservatives
Randi Rhodes: Still Not Mugged Air America: Still Not Credible
Air America: We Just Make It up As We Go Along
Air America’s Hit-job
Air America Lied! Randi Rhodes Not Mugged

Well, gee whiz! Must be nice to be so infallible, huh? And be able to do your own mugging for the public, screaming from the mountaintops that your shit smells like roses? To be the type that never makes a mistake? To be so damn... perfect? By the way - isn't 'pride' one of the Seven Deadly Sins?

Uhh... not so fast. Sure, we fell for this 'Randi got mugged by right-wing lunatic' thing. It sounded somewhat credible, given the amount of harassment often dished out by their kind upon us. We didn't just pull this out of our asses. A few years ago, I was the lucky recipient of death threats myself from some moronic loser named "AZ Joe." Yes, there are some on your side of the fence that are a bit unhinged.

You see, this really does not vindicate you guys, the 101st Fighting Keyboarders. At least we came clean about this. I followed up immediately, claiming that I was wrong. The fact that hardly any of you guys have ever apologized for any of the bullshit you've spewed in the past does not translate to some sort of superiority thing. After all, there's a reason your false idol has slipped from a high 90% approval rating all the way down to a third of that. And that you guys are really only trusted by the ones who have already sipped the right-wing Flavor-Aid. In short, you guys have been reduced to mere conservoporn. Shall I count the ways?

We never forwarded lies about 'weapons of mass destruction' to get us in a war that has already killed thousands.

We never falsely claimed that Saddam Hussein was in bed with al Qaeda.

We never flasely claimed that Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei died, as Pajamas Media and Michelle Malkin did. He's still among the living, and since there's been no retraction from any of you, I assume you must still think he's dead. Or just hanging out with Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, JFK and Tupac.

We never forwarded phony photos of Sen. John Kerry eating alone in a mess hall. Well, at least some of you guys retracted that.

We never rammed that whole Swift Boat Veterans for Truth bullshit, the purpose of which was to defame decorated American soldiers who aren't Bushbots, down people's throats. Still waiting for an apology there.

We never accused the Associated Press of lying about an Iraqi source, like Michelle Malkin and others did. Malkin said flat out, "I'm not apologizing for anything."

We never claimed former President Clinton sent troops into Somalia, when it was his predecessor that did.

We never forwarded tin-foil hat theories about the Clintons wiretapping Princess Diana.

We never demanded the head of Osama bin Laden, then turned around and forgot who he was.

We never published the names, phone numbers and email addresses of those who disagree with us, then complain about our own invasion of privacy, like Michelle Malkin did. Repeatedly.

We never whined about the New York Times publishing photos of the vacation homes of Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, even after Rumsfeld's office had given them permission to do so.

We never believed that "Mission Accomplished" bullshit, and never swept it under the rug.

We don't normally call people who disagree with us 'traitors.'

We never bullied and slandered young children that disagree with us.

We never made up stuff to smear Dan Rather. Seeing as Rather is currently suing his former bosses at CBS, this little house of cards you guys built will likely collapse in the coming months.

We never saw a conservative apologize for the behavior of their perverts.

We never accused the media of being terrorist sympathizers.

We never secured false White House press credentials for a barely existing news service under a false name, as former gigolo Jeff Gannon did.

We never took pride in lying.

We never tagged disgraced Republicans as Democrats, like FOX News has done.

We never turned our backs on our own.

Hate to break it to you all, but you guys are far from perfect. By a longshot. Then again, we aren't perfect either. We are mere flesh and bone, prone to mistakes. Being infallible does not make you a good person. Being humble does. It's too bad most of you conservative screechers just don't have the confidence or self-esteem necessary to own up to your own shortcomings. And that has done more to cripple your credibility than admitting a simple fuck-up.

We owned up. How about you?


raccoonradio said...

Sound clip from her show
; she had
been at an Irish pub watching football and went outside for a smoke and then either fell or was pushed into a grate; she said she may have fainted because she hadn't eaten
all day, etc.

KingDaevid said...

...what I wanna know is why, after last Monday, Jon Elliot still gets 15 weeknight hours on KPHX, and all I get is half an hour on Sunday mornings :-( ...

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