Monday, January 17, 2005

Dumb Things

Note: This is going to be a blog-centric post, only loosely tied into current events.

Many of you may have heard about Armstrong Williams, a conservative commentator that the Department of Education and Rod "teachers-are-terrorists" Paige paid $250,000 to promote NCLB. A few less may have heard about Zephyr Teachout talking about the Dean campaign paying Markos Moulitsas and Jerome Armstrong as web/blogger consultants but onstensibly so they would positively pitch Dean. A few of the more savvy may imagine what happened when Zephyr's comments appeared in the Wall Street Journal.

The 101st Fighting Keyboarders as well a few more of the rights tv comentators tried to link this to the Williams story and equate them because Armstrong Williams was really starting to make a bit of a stink. There was anger and recriminations at Zephyr because not only had she hinted at something that was in actuality a lie--Jerome didn't blog while on the Dean Payroll, and Kos had a disclaimer on his page; both only did consulting work for the campaign as in their job descriptions--but something that was really stupid. Not only was it going to be used to reduce the noise about Armstrong Williams but it might harm Dean's status as fighting for the DNC chair! Now Zephyr has since said and its been proved that by all intents and purposes the story that ran in the WSJ was a dead story. No legs and if it was printed it was printed because of an agenda.

Moreover... Armstrong Williams was PAID VIA YOUR TAX DOLLARS to be a shill. Even if Jerome and Kos had shilled for Dean it would have been paid for out of campaign money donated by people like me ($100!) for the express purpose of shilling for Dean. Now the Bushies do this a lot, like for instance the Social Security Administration sending out packets talking about the "crisis" that social security is in. Take it from me, another young 23 year old young person, that I expect social security to be there and that if it is in a crisis, it is one of George Bush's making. But that's a subject for another post (but keep demagouging it seems to be working!). The point is Zephyr did something really dumb, refused to recant because of a different goal (discussing blogger ethics) and now the wingers are using it to blunt some criticism at them.

Don't lose sight of the fact that YOUR TAX DOLLARS WERE USED TO PAY OFF ARMSTRONG WILLIAMS!

Oh yeah, I'm not a reporter but a partisan hack! (Not a shill, because I'm not getting paid!) There's your disclaimer for you.

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