Unethical Quote of the Week: “Meg Lanker-Simons is Innocent” Facebook Page

“Meg Lanker-Simons is innocent we believe what she did was justified and deserves not to be held accountable for her accusations we stand behind you sister.”

—-The Facebook page dedicated to the plight of University of Wyoming student, progressive blogger and campus radio host Meg Lanker-Simons, who apparently sent an obscene and threatening message to herself online under the guise of an anonymous male conservative, one of her sworn foes. She has been charged with a misdemeanor by campus police.*

I confess, there were more flattering photos of Meg I could use, but she doesn't deserve them. What she deserves, really, would be for me to dress up in drag, take my own photo, and not only label it as meg, but then riff on how ugly she is in the picture, when it's really me. Meg would approve of that. She'd have to.

I confess, there were more flattering photos of Meg I could use, but she doesn’t deserve to have me use them. What she deserves, really, would be for me to dress up in drag, blacken my teeth and take my own photo, and then not only label it as Meg, but then riff on how ugly she is in the picture, when it’s really me. Meg would approve of that. She’d have to.

Let us stipulate that the title of the Facebook page may well be correct, as James Taranto persuasively argues: threatening yourself, even with rape, which is what Lanker-Simons did, is unlikely to be anything but protected speech.

Beyond that, however, this kind of stunt is low-wattage Tawana Brawleyism,  and thus ethically revolting. That 38 Facebook fans and the semi-literate clod who authored the quote above argue that it is “justified” shows that ethics rot has some new and virulent strains.

Lanker-Simons, after writing the fake post on a college “crush” Facebook page [ “I want to hate fuck Meg Lanker-Simons so hard. That chick that runs her liberal mouth all the time and doesn’t care who knows it. I think its hot and it makes me angry. One night with me and shes gonna be a good Republican bitch”], expressed outrage at her fictional conservative tormenter, writing that the post was “disgusting” and “misogynistic,” and ending with the crushing rejoinder, “Instead of focusing on how angry and turned on me ‘running my mouth’ makes you, perhaps you should listen instead. You might learn something.”  Here it is. Remember—she’s commenting on her own post...

hatefuck2

What kind of  activists for any position on any end of the ideological spectrum (Meg fashions herself as a progressive feminist activist, and her conduct is an embarrassment to progressives, feminists, activists, women, human beings and anyone who shares her Zodiac sign…) think such a nauseating and stupid tactic is defensible? It is a lie, it is unfair, and it is hateful. To have such contempt for one’s adversaries that you can think it is “justifiable ” to fake offensive conduct and frame them for what you did to yourself—how vile, pathetic, and weak. This makes James O’Keefe look like Lowell Thomas.  Lanker-Simons apparently can’t confidently win her battle of ideas using the actual words, positions and actions of those who oppose her, so she has to stoop to framing her opponents for the eagerly gullible by resorting to crude stereotypes, fakery, and mock outrage. This is Saul Alinsky/Richard Nixon dirty trickery, and the side that resorts to it, loses.

Sure,I think Meg is innocent of a crime; she just has the ethics of a weasel, the principles of carny, and the integrity of a 51 card marked deck. Any position or movement that uses such miserable tactics—or continues to tolerate anyone who does— forfeits trust, respect, and the privilege of being taken seriously….forever.  If the University of Wyoming doesn’t now tell her to take her “running mouth” and lying fingers to another radio station (or to MSNBC, of course…that would be my bet for where Meg lands…maybe as a guest host for Al Sharpton), that’s one more university that can be effectively dismissed as a reliable instructor of student values.

As for her 38 fans…well, that’s some group of supporters you have behind you, Meg. Morons. You must be so proud.

* Here’s more recent, less concise, equally cretinous entry on the site: “If you’re serious about helping women please like this page we cannot progress unless we all get involved follow meg and we shall get to the promised land these men cant hold us back , for long we have been oppressed. But today i tell you this caged bird sings and it sings for freedom please take my hand , reach out and take my hand i promise you we will make it.”

________________________________

Pointer: Wall Street Journal (James Taranto)

Facts: Campus Reform

Graphics: Street boners

108 thoughts on “Unethical Quote of the Week: “Meg Lanker-Simons is Innocent” Facebook Page

  1. Sometimes behavior is so pathetic I wonder if it can even qualify as “unethical.” Forget the criminal charges. Throw her out of school and hope she, and her supporters, grow up and see the error of her ways.

    • Can you believe this? She already has demanded that I take down the post and referred me to her “legal team,” because “the Facebook page isn’t hers.” My post never says it is hers, or implies it.

      She can’t read, either.

      • It’s at this point that you say, “Meg, I’d like you to introduce you to some friends of mine, Ken White and Popehat. They’ll be introducing you to your new friend, The Streisand Effect, in due time.”

      • Not only is the page not hers, it is clearly set up by fake users as a troll site. The first two people to like and comment on the page are from accounts created on Wednesday:
        https://www.facebook.com/cherry.red.5602728
        https://www.facebook.com/jessica.hughes.7583992

        Your post states, “That 38 Facebook fans and the semi-literate clod who authored the quote above argue that it is “justified” shows that ethics rot has some new and virulent strains.” Since this page was obviously set up by Conservative trolls, I guess your statement contains a kernel of truth, however it is misleading in suggesting that the virulent hate is found among her supporters.

        • I’m not especially interested in the troll vs supporter wars at this juncture. There is plenty of reliable evidence that the sentiment printed on the site is in evidence on the campus, as well as elsewhere. They may not have put their support in the moronic terms that the Facebook creator did here, but they are no less unethical and moronic. If you really want to stand on the argument, “It’s unethical to cite as an unethical quote an insincere statement put online to ape the similar sincere statement, equally moronic, that the actual, as opposes to the cynical, supporters of an unethical individual would and do subscribe to,’ be my guest. Now, if I launched that Facebook page in order to write a post calling my own quote unethical, in so doing holding the group of supporters of this awful woman up to disparagement for something I knew they hadn’t done, THAT would be misleading and unfair.

          But Meg would approve of it.

          I will say that having just checked the site, it is a lot more obvious that it is populated by Meg-critics rather than Meg-enablers now than when I wrote the post. I really don’t care, however. The site seems to irritate Meg, and that’s a side benefit.

          • Surely there is a contradiction in defending a site that makes false statements claiming to represent the views of a group (here, Meg’s supporters) in order to cast that group as unethical in a post that is condemning precisely the same type of action (alleged) on her part. Isn’t that obvious?

            • Sure. But nobody’s defending the site. My post calls its message unethical and its organizers morons. They are that, no matter how you slice it. The post was about the plain meaning of the words, and that target doesn’t change no matter what their origin is. You’re stretching, and can’t imagine why.

              • Yeah, you’re probably right. Hey, why not check The Onion for next week’s choice – they’re always saying outrageous things there.

              • You can’t seriously believe that it doesn’t matter whether the intention behind “the plain meaning of the words” was genuine. If your post was purely emotional – consisting of the quotation followed by the word “Boo!” then that might hold up. But your post was about why the quotation was wrong and what its implications were. That analysis changes if the quotation was written with irony in mind. It’s still unethical, but whereas the sincere version of the quotation is wrong because it defends an unethical tactic, the satirical version is wrong because it hypocritically employs the exact same tactic for the purpose of criticizing it.

                If you don’t see a difference between the two situations, I worry that you’re insulating yourself from the implication that conservatives may be equally prone to this ends-justify-the-means, “it’s what they would have said anyway” mentality. And in fact, if you’re saying that the intent of the quotation doesn’t matter because it reflects a real sentiment, then you’re employing that same mentality yourself.

                • Ed, I’m in a bad mood because I was so pissed off by your comment, which is obnoxious in the extreme, that I deleted my post TWICE in agitation, making me even more pissed off. That part isn’t your fault.
                  LOOK:
                  the post is about those activist fanatics who support dastardly anything for a cause activists like Meg Lanker-Simons, even when they lie to impugn their enemies, as with Tawana Brawley. That was the topic, and those were the targets. I reached the Facebook page in good faith, by another link, in a post that described it as a page in support of this awful woman. When I reached the page, there was barely anything on it but the quote. It is not my fault if the Facebook page was a false flag, and no, I don’t care if it was. I was looking for an example of the inevitable support for this wrongful act, and such support is, by multiple reports, on the campus and elsewhere. I used the quote, which accurately represents sentiment behind the tangible, demonstrable support (the hatefuck quote is nothing but virtual libel), whether the quote is genuine or not, and I still don’t know. I did not manufacture it, and I used it in good faith. It is NOT the same as Meg’s bogus fraud, because there is no evidence that any conservative, male or otherwise, wants to hatefuck her or has said or thought about any such thing. She was employing a gross stereotype based on pure prejudice on her part. Support for Lanker-Simons, on the other hand, is demonstrable and real. If the Facebook page is fake, it is not representing anything that doesn’t exist, right now, out in the open, and that was what I wrote about. That doesn’t make its misleading aspect less wrong, but it does mean that the quote does not misrepresent anything about Meg’s supporters other than their grammar.

                  I hate fake uses of the web, all of them; I hate them more every day, and this kind of crap is one reason—it wastes my time, and it gives people like you opportunities for silly “gotchas.” The policy here is that I write about the ethics of a situation as I understand it with reasonable due diligence. The ethical analysis is valid for the “facts” used. If I am critical of a person or organization based on misinformation, I will fix that, of course. But there was no named target here, other than Meg. The target was “people who support what Meg did.” I assumed that the quote-author was one such individual, but so what—if he/she is a troll, the target of my post remains the same. [If, by the way, I was fooled by Meg’s trick and wrote a post about what is wrong with “men who want to hatefuck feminist progressives”, that post might well be valid whether the person who sent the threat about Meg was Meg or not. If I wrote it about “conservatives” or “men” using the message as characteristic of them, then I would have to recant. I wrote the post about people who mean what the quote said. I didn’t say who those people are, or characterize all feminists, progressives or activists by their beliefs.] If the authors of the quote didn’t actually support what they wrote they did, plenty of other people, misguided people, unethical people do, and the essay is still about them. Those who support Meg are unethical morons; those who waste my time with false flag Facebook pages are another kind of unethical moron, but I’m not writing about them now, because they aren’t worth my time, and I’ve made my view of such conduct clear in the past.

                  And this–-“I worry that you’re insulating yourself from the implication that conservatives may be equally prone to this ends-justify-the-means, “it’s what they would have said anyway” mentality”-–is crap. Find me one post among the 3600+ here that excuses such tactics by the Right. The website you are so concerned about isn’t “it’s what they would have said anyway”, but a “what they are in fact currently saying,” ONE, TWO, it libels no group, and only criticizes another group that defines itself openly and accurately by sentiments similar to the quote, and THREE, a lousy 38 people were involved when I accessed the Facebook site.

                  I don’t know what you want from me…a full investigation of this stupid Facebook page? I repeat—I don’t care. People who play stupid Facebook games are not of interest to me. People who are radio personalities and activists and who do what Lanker-Simons did out of hatred and are supported by doctrinaire, ruthless, ethics-free fanatics are of great interest. Whether they are of the right or the left doesn’t make any difference to me at all—and if you have any evidence otherwise, show it, or stand down.

                  • I’m probably as confused as you are pissed off. I don’t understand why my comment came off as obnoxious in the extreme (I might concede that about the one below, to Ablativ), but that probably just means that I think you’ve misread my comment as much as you think I’ve misread your original post.

                    I think it’s particularly important that I respond to this bit:

                    Find me one post among the 3600+ here that excuses such tactics by the Right.

                    I think you’re generally reading accusations into my comment, which don’t exist. That you would actively defend such tactics by the right is not something that I was asserting, or would. I do, however, think you tend to make more unfounded assumptions about the left than about the right, and that there’s a difference not in the quality of your coverage of poor ethics from each side, but in the quantity thereof. I don’t expect perfect balance; that would be eminently unreasonable. But I do expect you to acknowledge that you have sensory filters that make your more sensitive to one category of story than another.

                    I guess what I’m generally taking issue with in the present case is that you’re saying it doesn’t matter whether the Facebook page is real, because somebody, somewhere, really believes what it says. And no doubt that’s true. But when you say you specifically set out to find a statement of support for Lanker-Simons, I have to wonder whether you would have done the same in any other case, wherein the likely supporters would be Republicans rather than Democrats.

                    Somebody, somewhere, is going to support any number of stupid, unethical, illegal actions, but you can’t cover them all. You talk about the facts of authorship in this case not mattering because your blog merely uses contemporary issues to illustrate broader topics. Acknowledged; but that doesn’t change the fact that your blog is topical. Surely you tend to start with a contemporary event and then extrapolate the ethical issues, rather than starting with the ethical issues and hunting down an event to match.

                    Assuming that you started by reading about Meg Lanker-Simons’ fraud, why didn’t you choose to cover it by focusing on the wrongness of her act on its own? Why did you commit yourself to finding evidence of other people who supported that act?

                    If this seems terribly accusatory, please bear in mind that it wasn’t intended that way at the outset. I didn’t read your original post as anti-liberal. The only thing that turned my mind in that direction was how firmly you emphasized that your point in making the post wasn’t to analyze the actual ethics at play there, but to call attention to the fact that people support Meg Lanker-Simons in spite of the obvious wrongness of her act.

                    If you were just in error about the facts, and made your commentary in good faith, there would be no problem. Finding out that those facts are in error doesn’t weaken your general statements, but it does change the particular implications of this situation. That was my only point, and it’s not a way of playing “gotcha.” It’s just an attempt to encourage additional analysis to keep up with a changing situation.

                    I don’t quite understand why you take exception to that. The problem, to my mind, only arises with your refusal to engage with reader commentary upon the situation as it now stands. Nobody’s saying that the likely fraudulent nature of the Facebook page calls into question the general statement, “it’s wrong to support what Lanker-Simons did.” Nobody’s saying that you’re wrong to criticize a statement of such support if you genuinely believe that it’s sincere. Nobody’s saying that liberals are incapable of the sort of fanaticism that produces that support.

                    But I do believe that if you find out that something was false when you believed it to be true, and you respond to that by saying “oh well, it illustrates something that’s true anyway,” you’re essentially doing the same thing as the hypothetical sincere supporter of Lanker-Simons. Such a person would presumably read the fraudulent comment and say, “I know this isn’t real, but I also know that somebody’s really saying something just like it, so it’s okay that somebody used it to make a point, even in full awareness that it was made up.”

                    Somehow I suspect I just obliviously added fuel to a fire.

                    • 1. “Assuming that you started by reading about Meg Lanker-Simons’ fraud, why didn’t you choose to cover it by focusing on the wrongness of her act on its own? Why did you commit yourself to finding evidence of other people who supported that act?” Because the act is obviously, ridiculously unethical. Because the Tawana Brawley case still makes me crazy, and this reeks of it. Because the willingness of partisans to accept wrongdoing is how movements get corrupted. Because its my blog, and I focus on what I think is important.

                      2. I’ve written at least 7 posts critical of James O’Keefe and his supporters—no left leaning activist has received such negative attention here. I have criticized Breitbart more than I have any left-leaning website. The President happens to be a Democrat, so there is no contemporaneous rightward President to balance my critiques on him, and Nixon is dead, so there is no ex-President to balance Bill Clinton, but Newt Gingrich comes pretty close to Bill on my tally sheet. No Democrat has received equivalent ethics criticism here to that I have sent Michele Bachmann’s way. I have criticized Limbaugh, Hannity, Levin, Ingraham, Plante, Savage and other conservative talk show hosts, and many times, while seldom criticizing liberal talk show hosts (because there aren’t many.) In fact, I do keep tallies, rough ones, and it does matter to me that no one side of the spectrum gets disproportionate criticism. I work hard to keep bias and political preferences out of this, not that it does any good. To liberal-progressives, I look conservative, to conservatives, I look like a lefty. That’s the way I like it.

                      3. There was, in fact, nothing in the post that suggested that this kind of conduct was peculiar to liberals—it just happens that this case involved one. I don’t see why I should have to overcome a presumption of bias because I cover the story. I know that the prevailing news media tact is to only pick negative stories about the other side, but I have condemned that practice here, and do not engage in it.

                      4. I apologize for the tone of my reply—mostly, I hate the hell out of fake web pages, and hate having to do this kind of clean-up because people put garbage out there like dog poop in flaming bags on a doorstep. They are right up there with vandals and internet virus inventors–horrible human beings.

                    • I work hard to keep bias and political preferences out of this, not that it does any good. To liberal-progressives, I look conservative, to conservatives, I look like a lefty. That’s the way I like it.

                      And that’s an admirable accomplishment. As a general rule of thumb, I regard a source as more reliable if it’s criticized from both sides. So good on you for absorbing flak from the right. But the thing is, as I’m sure I’ve seen you acknowledge in the past, you actually do tend towards conservativism. I don’t think you’re prone to extreme partisanship, and I don’t think you’re often blinded by bias, but I do think you have biases, as does everyone.

                      It’s good that you work hard to keep bias and political preferences out of your writing, but I think it’s more important to recognize that breeding them out of your actual thought process is not something that any human being can do. It’s less important to balance the number of stories from each side than it is to strive to achieve Epoche, or reflexivity in the sense of a habit of engaging in dialogue with your own preconceptions. Case in point:

                      There was, in fact, nothing in the post that suggested that this kind of conduct was peculiar to liberals—it just happens that this case involved one.

                      But it didn’t! Not if the conduct you’re referring to is the defense of wrong actions on the basis of their aligning with one’s beliefs. The quotation, if it came from conservative satirists or a-political trolls, did not demonstrate that. Below, you cite Rodger McDaniel as a more genuine example of the same unethical behavior. But it isn’t; it’s an example of a different kind of unethical behavior. If the Facebook page had been genuine, it would have been an example of acknowledging that an obvious wrongdoing occurred, but denying that it actually was wrongdoing. Compare that to what you said below:

                      Meg’s supporters, ideological or otherwise, will rationalize away any result, and will refuse to believe what is inconsistent with what they want to believe.

                      That seems right, but it describes a case of acknowledging that an obvious wrongdoing was wrong, but denying that it occurred. That’s substantially different. It’s wrong and stupid, assuming there’s good evidence that the wrongdoing occurred. But it’s a cognitive failing, more than an ethical one.

                  • I don’t think anyone is questioning that you reached the site in good faith and wrote what amounts to a legitimate critique of the unethical position expressed in the quotation. However, since there seems to be considerable reason to doubt that the quotation was in fact written by her supporters, it seems that you owe us some other evidence that her supporters are actually making the argument you attribute to them–that her (alleged) act of false accusation is ethically justifiable. You claim that support of this kind has been openly expressed on campus and elsewhere, so you should be able to point to other instances of it. I suspect, however, that you cannot, at least as it applies to this case. From what I have seen, her supporters have said nothing other than that she deserves a fair trail and is innocent until proven guilty. The rally on campus, you should know, occurred before she was accused of making the post, so it is not the evidence you would need. If you can produce such examples, please do share them, because at this point it looks to me like you have been critical of a certain group of individuals based on false information, and you should fix that.

                    • I don’t have endless time to research this, but be my guest. The problem is that our Meg is denying that she wrote the post, so to find an activist enabler who both accepts the police account—that she sent the post itself—AND supports Meg is hard. If you support Meg, you also choose to believe that the police are persecuting her. But the various posts here are enough for me, and have to be enough for you, at least from me. All of them, if they had been on the site I cited, would have fit right in with the sentiment of the apparently bogus quote. One typical example:

                      Rodger McDaniel: “The bottom line is that we all know that when anyone in Wyoming dares to say out loud that with which the crowd disagrees, there can be hell to pay. UW officials have demonstrated the lengths to which they are willing to go to silence Meg. This has to be considered in the context of all UW has done before in an attempt to silence and marginalize her. UW has a long record of squelching free speech. Add this as one more chapter.”

                      This all tracks with the Tawana Brawley episode. Meg’s supporters, ideological or otherwise, will rationalize away any result, and will refuse to believe what is inconsistent with what they want to believe. Few of the 92 followers listed here will abandon Meg as long as she insists that a phantom conservative woman-hater is out there, even if, as is likely, there is an actual prosecution.

                    • I have seen that quote from Roger McDaniel, and I agree with it 100%. He is pointing out the fact that there are good reasons in the present case to hold our judgment about the evidence that the University Police have against Meg. After all, this is a woman who successfully won an embarrassing lawsuit against the University in defense of free speech in a high profile case two years ago. Not to claim conspiracy, but there’s something to his post. However, it is clearly not a statement claiming that if Meg is guilty of the accusation then she is justified in her action. That is the gist of the quote that you rightly took issue with, and I’m claiming that none of her supporters are saying that.

                  • there is no evidence that any male, conservative or otherwise, wants to hatefuck her

                    Fixed that for ya? 🙂

                    Just trying to lighten the mood here – when the guy in charge starts sounding like me after a 3am wake-up (just with less profanity), I start to get concerned. 🙂

          • Look, it’s really simple. You say:
            “There is plenty of reliable evidence that the sentiment printed on the site is in evidence on the campus, as well as elsewhere. They may not have put their support in the moronic terms that the Facebook creator did here, but they are no less unethical and moronic.”

            But such a defense, if it were sound, would work just as well as a defense of the controversial post Meg is accused of making. Just read some of the hateful comments posted on the site you link to if you have any doubts about the reality of people expressing those sentiments.

            However, with respect to Meg’s actual real-life supporters, all they are saying at this point is that she is innocent until proven guilty. (She denies the charges and is pleading not guilty.) I have seen or heard of no one arguing that lying about such threats should be justified. That position only exists in the twisted imaginations of these Conservative trolls. So, I’m not claiming that you should change your headline, but you should own the fact that the most shameful quote of the week belongs to these Conservative trolls, not anyone else.

          • In this case, I think it means something like “obvious to someone who considers the evidence with an open mind,” which I’m not expecting it to apply to everyone here.

            • Huh. So you do know what it means…

              How is it, then, that you used it somewhere that it does not fit?

              That the page has blocked Jack for his criticism suggests that they are not, in fact, trolling. It suggests that they are earnest in their stated belief, and that dissent angers them.

              And the idea that ONLY a Conservative would create such a page ignores the fact that “fake but accurate” and “it is the sort of thing they would do” are actual things people who share Meg’s views do and say when speaking about inaccurate stories that paint Conservatives in a negative light.

              But as I said, your partisan desire for Conservatives to still be the bad guy is rather cute.

              • Knock it off, Ablativ. You’re being an ass.

                You know what I find cute? The fact that you apparently are completely blind to the dizzying irony of your fourth paragraph. You accuse h s for matching her belief about the Facebook page to her preconceptions about conservatives, and in the same breath you actually declare your own preconceptions about liberals, and offer that as evidence of your belief about the Facebook page.

                It’s mind-boggling, yet somehow this fallacy of justifying one bias by citing a contrary bias has become par for the course on Ethics Alarms. This site has really done wonders to expand my understanding of the abysmal depths of cognitive dissonance.

                As far as I can tell, in the present situation, it’s pretty much equally likely that the Facebook page is populated by genuine defenders of Lanker-Simons or by people attacking her in a roundabout way. But I don’t think there’s anyone on this comment thread making the case that Lanker-Simons isn’t the bad guy in the larger story. The question of who the bad guy is in the context of this post, though, is an open one. And if you don’t believe that at all, your conclusion is based on nothing but bias, no matter which side you’re attacking with that conclusion.

                • You accuse h s for matching her belief about the Facebook page to her preconceptions about conservatives, and in the same breath you actually declare your own preconceptions about liberals, and offer that as evidence of your belief about the Facebook page.

                  The difference being, of course, that my suggestion has historical support, her’s is mere “They are bad people”.

                  • I guess you miss my reasoning then. I take it that the links I posted above constitute evidence that the founding members of the group are fake accounts (reverse search the photo sources if you have any doubt). If you were to scroll down to the very first of the comments you would find equally cretinous posts by both those accounts. Now, that in itself doesn’t tell us anything about who’s behind those accounts. However, if the page was created by actual supporters who believed these things, then what’s their motivation for posting from made-up accounts? Why not create it and post with your real account, if you want to advertise your support. On the other hand, if someone made the page in order to demonstrate how dumb the libtards are, they might need to make accounts that are superficially believable (“hey, look posts by a black lady and an equal sign, I’ll buy that”). So, no, I’m not basing my judgment on ill conceived preconception about anyone, but rather making an inference based on motive. You may disagree, but that’s my reasoning.

                    • I take it that the links I posted above constitute evidence that the founding members of the group are fake accounts (reverse search the photo sources if you have any doubt)

                      Personal knowledge of progressive activists using sockpuppet accounts in order to create the appearance of “conservative trolls” makes this unconvincing evidence.

                      Were I not aware of several instances (one of them went after me, in fact) I might consider it.

                      But I am, so I shall not. It tracks perfectly with “we would like to keep our hands clean as we defend someone who’s likely going to end up boned and vilified” tactics from the past.

                    • Why not create it and post with your real account, if you want to advertise your support

                      I’ll go into more detail…

                      Using new accounts allows it to be a disposable act – they can walk away and never look back, fairly confident that it will never, ever be tracked back to them (assuming they used a new gmail account on a public library terminal).

                      In this manner they can attack any witnesses, libel anyone in the college administration, and attempt to poison the well with distorted information or outright lies.

                      People like Bret Kimberlin and Neal Rauhauser mastered this trick years ago, and it has become not just popular, but common.

                      And, frankly, I’ve never known many Conservatives who would waste the time to put up and bullshit trolling “she’s INNOCENT!!!” page.

                      They would be infinitely more likely to make pages condemning her. It is their mindset, while the Progressive mindset is one that makes frequent use of the tactics you suspect to be at play here.

                  • Really??

                    Are you actually under the impression that you’re making rational sense?

                    First of all, the phrase “they are bad people” appears nowhere in this thread, and I can’t find anything that seems even roughly synonymous with that. So I’m going to assume that when you say that’s her argument, you’re just pulling it out of your ass because it lines up with what you expect a liberal to believe.

                    All you’ve done to differentiate your view from the one you’ve imagined for your opponent is add a word to the same damn claim. Asserting that something is “historically” true isn’t different from just asserting that it’s true. I can confidently paraphrase your point of view thus: “Opponent X just believes conservatives are bad people. But historically, liberals actually are bad people.”

                    Have you ever even entertained the notion of political empathy? It shouldn’t be that difficult to understand that EVERYBODY thinks that what they believe has historical support. You seem to be under the impression that confirmation bias is just a disease of the liberal mind. But in fact the reason why people come to different conclusions about the world is because – are you ready for this? – different people have different experiences and view them through different filters. So maybe everything that you’ve seen in your life has supported the idea that liberals tend to shut out reality and demonize their adversaries. But for somebody else, everything they’ve seen in their life has supported the idea that that’s what conservatives do.

                    You know what I think on the topic? I think you and that hypothetical person are both full of shit. And you’re both probably prone to the exact same kind of irrational argumentation that you’re demonstrating in this thread. What would be hilarious if it didn’t have such damning consequences is the fact that your inability to divorce your understanding of the world from your personal experience actually leads you to become the sort of person that you accuse liberals of being. Because after all, as long as the historical evidence that you’ve gleaned from your life supports the notion that liberals always levy accusations against conservatives, that gives you carte blanche to always levy accusations against liberals.

                    That is all you’ll ever do if you can’t train yourself to maintain a substantial quantity of doubt about everything that you believe, especially when it’s a belief about other classes of people. And the fact that I have to routinely explain this to people who are older than twelve makes me intensely sad about the state of political discourse in this country.

                    • Have you ever even entertained the notion of political empathy?

                      No, but only because I generally lack the capacity for empathy. Add to the fact that I fairly loath both side of the political spectrum as both being oppressive, totalitarian asshats whose only difference is WHERE in my life they wish to intrude, and you get someone with little care save when one side is displaying behavior I find to be repugnant.

                      As for support for my assertion that this is fairly common amongst the left…

                      Randi Rhodes, Tawana Brawley, Madonna Constantine, Maurice Schwenkler, and Anthony Weiner.

                      I know I am leaving at least one out, because I can’t find the name of the Liberal who claimed her car had been vandalized either prior too or right after a speech she gave, and it turned out she did it herself. There are doubtlessly more.

                      I will also include the following tragic events that many media outlets sought to tie to the right, yet later were shown to be committed by someone who was either ABSOLUELY INSANE or had a history of supporting democrats: James Holmes, Jared Loughner, The Cabby Stabber, The “killer” of Bill Sparkman, Amy Bishop, The Fort Hood Shooter, The IRS Plane Crasher, The Pentagon Shooter, and The Boston Marathon Bombing.

                      So when I say “attempts to make the Right look bad are a known tactic of the left”, I’m not basing it on one or two instances but instead upon a pattern of behavior that stretches back to at least 2008 (well before, if you include the very first major incident by Tawana Brawley).

  2. As a female who has been threatened, fake threats make it harder for me to get belief and help when I need it. The misdemeanor should stand, as fakery doesn’t help women at all.

    If she wants to write the villains lines too, she should write fiction to sell instead of presenting it as truth.

    • Unfortunately in this case, the likelihood of negative consequences still doesn’t cancel the right to free speech. I think there should be serious consequences, but I’m not sure how the U of W gets around the First Amendment. One more reason the Supreme Court declaring last year that there was a Constitutional right to lie was a bad decision.

        • I said she posted in the guise of a male conservative…I should have made it clear that “he’ was un-named. She posted, police believe, from her own computer. She also apparently reported the post as a threat, sprarking the investigation that uncovered her scam. Unbelievable.

          • If she got police involved, wouldn’t that be abuse of authorities? My understanding is that fake reporting of crimes is a crime in most places.

        • There’s a trend of “[School Name] Confessions” accounts, where someone will start an account and accept messages through a Google doc or some other anonymous what-have-you. I have to tell you, since seeing my alma mater’s, I’m in no hurry to finally get that diploma frame I’ve been putting off.

  3. Point of curiosity: Does the Kantian injunction against using people as means to an end apply if the person in question is oneself? In other words, if you use yourself as a prop in some scheme to achieve a petty objective – as Lanker-Simons clearly has – do you make yourself both the victim and the perpetrator of a violation of autonomy?

      • The intended target is a community – the conservative community, I’d say. Doing outrageous things to target or scare whole groups is a tactic about four decades out of date, wouldn’t you say?

  4. Jack: its obvious that the Facebook page was created just to get people to react. It’s no different then when people troll on websites for responses.

  5. Every real rape or real threat just got less credible because of this. When people use their free speech to do damage to truth we should expose them relentlessly. She should be publicly denounced repeatedly. There may not be legal consequences, but there should be social. and moral consequences.
    If UW doesn’t ask her to leave they are part of the problem. You’d think the women’s movement would be more upset than anyone else. That they’re not is very revealing of what they’re really about.

  6. I know nothing about this University, but many schools can kick students out for unseemly or unethical behavior — it doesn’t have to be illegal. This seems to fit the bill.

    An earlier post hit the nail on the head. While this conduct was wrong on all the levels you pointed out Jack, it also helped perpetuate the common perception that women lie to friends, counselors, police, etc. about threatened or actual attacks. It’s probably protected speech of course, but she still hurt women. Way to go Meg!

  7. I thought it was a crime to file a false police report. It looks like she complained loudly on campus about it, campus police were ordered to investigate it(not security guards, but police) and she lied to them about sending it. I am guessing they aren’t charging her with filing a false police report because the university ordered them to investigate. Of course, feminist activists would protest against prosecuting her because they would argue that prosecuting her would discourage women for reporting threats. They protest any attempt to prosecute women who put men in jail for false rape charges, so I would assume they would also protest prosecuting Lanker-Simons. Of course, how many people get away with this?

    If the people who are “supporting” her and James Taranto had any amount of integrity, whey would also have to protest the university’s decision to open a police investigation in the first place. If this is protected speech, why did they investigate it? If not, why shouldn’t she be charged? You can’t call in a bomb threat to yourself and then say it is protected speech (reasonably).

    The real crime is what the Facebook site creator has done to the English language. The University of Wyoming needs to find the identity of that person and expel them if they happen to be a student.

    • She is being charging with interference in a police investigation and will be arraigned. Her lawyer has said that she will be pleading not guilty.

    • I don’t think Taranto is supporting her, he’s just pointing out the (though I disagree) fairly convincing idea that it would be protected speech and thus not criminal.

      But as Beth said, she isn’t charged with filing a false report (because it seems SHE never contacted the police to inform them, other people did), but instead for interfering with the investigation (likely by saying “No, I don’t know who could have posted it – it seems she lied, which will frequently piss the prosecution into charging you with an obstruction charge.)

  8. “Remember, there was a creeper out there that…this and took the time to type it, but it took an admin to publish it. Even if it’s taken down, I’m left to wonder if…someone out there with a violent fantasy about me, and likely other women.
    To the person who wrote this: Assuming you’re serious, get some help. Please. If the only…to relate to women is through your sexual organs and your anger, I encourage you to visit the UW… center post-haste.”

    Knowing that these words were in many ways directed to herself makes me hope that she spends a bit of time at a councelling center, herself. Paging Dr. Freud…

    • She probably doesn’t need counseling. This was a not-so-well thought out plan to get publicity and sympathy. Despite this much of the truth coming out, the University is still saying this incident demands that the community evaluate sexism and violence against women. She got her attention, she got the University to act on her demands, and her prosecution and any punishment she receives makes her a martyr to her supporters. Why is this indicative of a mental problem? Callous shrewdness, perhaps…but not necessarily a mental problem. She probably will end up on several sympathetic talk shows and maybe get a book deal.

      • I don’t know. I think the level of the attack against herself, as well as the nature of it, indicate that there is some level of unbalance. If nothing else, the fact that she honestly expects a political opponent to repond at this level indicates to me that something is detatched from reality somewhere – an expectation hardly unique to her, sadly. Or the fact that she honestly believes that this is a fair tactic to use to win political points, which IS fairly unique to her. The possibility that this is actually how she views conservative men – as brutish neanderthals eager to rape women into submission. The fact that in her response, she not only pleads with her attacker to get help, but provides detailed instructions on how best to do so, knowing full well that SHE is the attacker… Makes me wonder.

        You could be right. It could all be a calculated ploy. Worse, it might succeed. At the very least, a little tuning up and balancing wouldn’t hurt her at all. Girl needs some perspective, if nothing else. Like most college students do, if I remember my college days correctly.

        • I think the level of the attack against herself, as well as the nature of it, indicate that there is some level of unbalance.

          I think it was equal parts projection and wishful thinking, that a man would want to touch her – a man who doesn’t shave half his head and then comb-over the other half, wear empty black eyeglass frames, carry a messenger bag everywhere, or wear skinny jeans.

  9. Well, I’m disgusted.
    The only comments that come to mind are really mean so I will keep them to myself.

  10. threatening yourself, even with rape, which is what Lanker-Simons did, is unlikely to be anything but protected speech.

    When it is used as the excuse to organize a rally on campus, and since it used campus funds to do so, I would consider it theft by deception.

    That she tried to make it look like it was a Conservative (in a move that must make Randi Rhodes proud) that did it just makes me wish she could have gotten arrested DURING the rally.

      • Oh, certainly…

        But she makes a fake post and then actively sought to use it to further a pet cause – I think that goes beyond “benefit of the doubt”…

        But in this case she’s charged with, it would seem, using her right to Free Speech to lie to the cops during the investigation. They generally frown on that.

        • The lying to the police is a crime. Lying to the police about an investigation of a non-crime is a pretty minor crime though. Her actions are horribly unethical, but barely illegal.

          • Because it all happened because of a fraud (it takes someone with a VERY special person to think she made the original “threat” and was not intending to use it as a tool to further her cause) committed via the internet and thus something the feds can latch onto, I don’t really think it is that all that legal, or all that minor.

  11. Final thoughts: After a little more thought and research, I am not at all sure that the quote above was composed as a false flag, or that the predominance of anti-Meg posts there proves anything at all. Here’s a site that is genuinely pro-Meg, a pity site on which she asks for donations to help her pay for surgery. Almost ever post is an attack on her, except for a lone defender. Thus it is no longer at all unlikely to me that a person set up this misbegotten Facebook Page expecting an avalanche of support and got slammed instead.

    Confirmation bias rules here. I would prefer to believe that the quote was genuine, so all this arguing over what my proper response should be if it isn’t is moot. I think the initial argument (which I bought into), that the tenor of the posts proves it isn’t genuine, doesn’t stand up (and the view that the Left likes false flag stunts more than the right is, for whatever reason, accurate, perhaps because this is vintage Alinsky); I still think it’s a valid theory, but an unprovable one. Under the circumstances, what is the reasonable presumption—that a Facebook page is what it claims to be, or something else?

    It’s 3 AM, and I am sick of everybody and everything connected with this story.

    • I posted there (though whether they survive is another matter). I suspect many other who were likewise disgusted with what she did typed her name into facebook’s search bar, and saw that page as an option, became angry that people are defending her, and went and commented.

      I stand by my belief that the page is genuine, and that they really do excuse what she did as justified because of her “message” and the target she wished to paint in a negative light.

      • I have slept on it, and now am certain you are right, H led us down a garden path, Ed got stampeded, and I was correct in the first place.

        What about the “likes”? When I first visited,there was nothing on that Facebook page but the idiotic quote in support of Meg’s fraud, then TWO idiotic quotes, a few critical or equivocal posts, and that’s it. …but there were over 30 “likes.A smoking gun. These are the people I was writing about too, and they signaled that they LIKED a site that had nothing on it but the words “Meg Lanker-Simons is innocent we believe what she did was justified and deserves not to be held accountable for her accusations we stand behind you sister.” This means those people endorsed that sentiment, whether it was placed as a false flag or not (and I also believe, per the previous comment, that there is no reason to assume that)—people followed that flag, and the post was about such people.

        Go ahead, Ed, H, logically explain why and how someone who is a member of the JDL would go to a Facebook page that happened to be set up by a darkly satiric Jew or someone else trying to make Christians look bad and that only carried the statement, “Those Jews are Christ-killers, get rid on them all!” and would click “LIKE”.

        Why would someone do that? How does signalling your approval of an insincere statement posted to bring criticism on the poster’s ideological enemies when in fact you disagree with the statement, like the poster advance the “liker’s” interests? NOBODY would do that! To make such conduct plausible, H would have to have us believe that all the “likers” were recruited by the false flag-flyer to make the fake Facebook page more credible, AND that none of the “likers” actually believed that the site’s sentiments were genuine and thus “liked” it for that reason. Impossible. 100% impossible. And also ridiculous. I’m furious with myself for not seeing it immediately and cutting short this fiasco.

        The critical posts notwithstanding, the “likes” must be the genuine opinions of some, many, most, and logically, probably all of those who signaled their approval of the statement that launched the post, meaning that I was correct in the first place— since my post was about the demonstrable attitudes of people who support that statement (whether the author of it does or not), and since the “likes” HAD to accurately represent the opinions of some of these, sufficiently proving that they were not the equivalents of Meg’s concocted hatefucker, it DOESN’T matter for the purpose of my post whether the author of the post was sincere or not. The “likes”, at least some of them, had to be in agreement with that statement.

        Conclusion: The existence of the critical posts on the site does not prove or even suggest that it is a false flag, and the existence of the “likes” proves that there are those in sympathy with the sentiment—and such are the targets of my post.

        Ablativ is spot on. H set me on a wild goose chase, and Ed inadvertently did exactly what he accused me of doing, but that I did not and DO NOT do—he applied his personal political loyalties to an instance of misbehaving progressives, and convinced himself that there they really weren’t misbehaving.

        “This house is clean”

        • Well, I still think you’re wrong, but I no longer think you will be convinced otherwise, so I won’t be spending too much more time here.

          This comment (on the cover photo) should be sufficient to demonstrate the possibility that some of the likers are not genuine:

          David Robison I just “liked” this page. I want it to stand and and be a beacon to illustrate the type of double standard, hypocritical thinking that would justify this type of action and think that the rest of us are to stupid to see just how evil little Meg is here. She’s the type who would have turned her Jewish or gay neighbors in to the Gestapo. She’s sadly not alone, in recent years, there have been militant liberal women professors that have smashed and graffittied their own cars and blamed conservatives, only to be found guilty of committing the crime themselves.
          Thursday at 9:45am ·

          I don’t think there’s any way of knowing the motivations all the other likers of the page. It’s not unreasonable to think that some are people who agree with the title of the page professing her innocence, but not everything in the description. I don’t know. My substantive claim was that it looks likely to me that the description was written by someone who is not an actual supporter, and I presented my evidence and rationale for that claim above.

          Finally, if you do not believe that Conservatives set up hoax sites on facebook to lampoon feminists and liberals, I give you “Womyn For Omnipotent Government” who also commented on and presumably liked the site. This is actually pretty well done, and worth a visit: https://www.facebook.com/WomynForOmnipotentGovernment

          • Why is every statement taken as an absolute? I think absolutely anything is possible and even likely on Facebook, somewhere. I wouldn’t say that it is impossible that there are fake libertarian pages set up by Leftist zoologists. I said that I agree that the theorized action here is not typical conservative MO.

            You cannot reasonably deny that at least some of the “likes” are bound to be whole-hearted and genuine (I would say it is certain that most of them are), and that’s all the support the post required.

        • This is what gets me so pissed about the statement…

          “Meg Lanker-Simons is innocent we believe what she did was justified”

          Parse that out – they are claiming her innocence, and the very next words say “that thing we just said she didn’t do? She did it for a really good reason, so it’s OK.”

          THEY JUST CONCEDED HER GUILT!!!

          The statement is classic Progressive – “They didn’t do it, and they did it for a really good reason”. She is to be forgiven because, while it wasn’t a Conservative this time, it’s the sort of thing they would do, and so the “truthy” element makes it perfectly OK – ignore the fact that they can’t actually give you examples to support why it is “like something a Conservative would say”…

          • Yes, everyone here agrees that the statement makes no sense on its face and when given a charitable interpretation is ethically suspect. The problem is that the Progressives you and and Jack want so desperately to to pin such views on, exist primarily in your imaginations. You’re both so eager to believe that this is how Progressives think and act that you are suckered by an obvious troll site and refuse to budge in the face of evidence.

            • I’m going to quote something I have up a bit…

              As for support for my assertion that this is fairly common amongst the left…

              Randi Rhodes, Tawana Brawley, Madonna Constantine, Maurice Schwenkler, and Anthony Weiner.

              I know I am leaving at least one out, because I can’t find the name of the Liberal who claimed her car had been vandalized either prior too or right after a speech she gave, and it turned out she did it herself. There are doubtlessly more.

              I will also include the following tragic events that many media outlets sought to tie to the right, yet later were shown to be committed by someone who was either ABSOLUELY INSANE or had a history of supporting democrats: James Holmes, Jared Loughner, The Cabby Stabber, The “killer” of Bill Sparkman, Amy Bishop, The Fort Hood Shooter, The IRS Plane Crasher, The Pentagon Shooter, and The Boston Marathon Bombing.

              So when I say “attempts to make the Right look bad are a known tactic of the left”, I’m not basing it on one or two instances but instead upon a pattern of behavior that stretches back to at least 2008 (well before, if you include the very first major incident by Tawana Brawley).

              So no, they don’t “only exist in our imagination” – there is a mountain of supporting evidence for our belief that Progressives have no issue with attempting to connect people they disagree with to horrible things.

              So Jack and I are just playing the odds…

              • Even if I accepted that bit of rambling as evidence for the “belief that Progressives have no issue with attempting to connect people they disagree with to horrible things” what exactly does that have to do with the present discussion? At issue is whether the quote Jack has attributed to a certain group was actually made by anyone in that group. I have suggested that the quote probably originates from the Right as an attempt to make the Left look bad, and I presented compelling evidence in support of that claim. You seem to think some obscure probability calculus provides countervailing evidence. But do you really think that kind of trash is restricted to just one side of the political discourse in this country? To think that it is to reveal yourself as a partisan jerk, not concerned with the truth. (See Jack’s post on the Ethics of Ignorance for discussion of why that’s a problem,) It’s been clear from the beginning of this discussion that you’re someone who can’t see the truth if it doesn’t fit his narrow political narrative, and, really, it’s probably time wasted to try to reason with the likes of you.

                • I listed five individuals who lied about “attacks” to smear people they disagree with, and nine events that were ACTIVELY attached to Conservatives without any evidence but were later PROVEN to be committed by people either wildly and actively insane or who supported liberals.

                  And you call it “a bit of rambling”.

                  You are an intellectually dishonest pile of crap, and I do so hope that when the entire system collapses due to the feckless and incompetent leadership of the current administration we get to meet, so that I can smile at you when I tell you to go fuck yourself when you ask for my help.

                • I have suggested that the quote probably originates from the Right as an attempt to make the Left look bad, and I presented compelling evidence in support of that claim.

                  You have offered no evidence, and in fact have mirrored the exact behavior of efforts to link bad acts to Conservatives.

                  But I expect no less from someone like you.

                  It’s been clear from the beginning of this discussion that you’re someone who can’t see the truth if it doesn’t fit his narrow political narrative, and, really, it’s probably time wasted to try to reason with the likes of you.

                  Oh go fuck yourself. If you were capable of reason, we’d not even be having this discussion.

            • You’ve crossed the line, and I expect an apology. There is no attack on progressives here. I have no stereotypical view, negative or positive, of progressives, and I see their conduct and motives as being no different from those of others all along the political spectrum. As I suspected, and you have confirmed, you are not interested in an objective discussion of ethics but rather in protecting partisan turf and making excuses for perceived allies.

              This is the quote from the article that mentions “progressives”: “What kind of activists for any position on any end of the ideological spectrum (Meg fashions herself as a progressive feminist activist, and her conduct is an embarrassment to progressives, feminists, activists, women, human beings and anyone who shares her Zodiac sign…) think such a nauseating and stupid tactic is defensible?”

              This shows your statement–“[You are] so eager to believe that this is how Progressives think and act that you are suckered by an obvious troll site and refuse to budge in the face of evidence”—to be the baseless slur it is. I have explained, very clearly and reasonably, my assessment of the Facebook page. It is logical, objective and fair.

              • To be fair, that comment was made primarily in response to AblativMeatshld, who still seems to be missing the issue completely, and I suppose you have given distinct reasons for thinking that your criticism is still valid. I think all evidence points to the fact that you were fooled by people putting words into the mouths of their political enemy on that facebook page, and it’s not clear to me why you don’t just own that. I don’t know your political views and it would be unfair to suggest that as the only possible reason for not distancing yourself from your original claim upon gaining new evidence, but I guess I just do not see your assessment as logical, objective and fair. I think you attacked a strawman someone else put before you, and you are unwilling to admit you were fooled.

                • I DID distance myself from my original claim, and stupidly so, since your argument, upon examination, makes no sense, as I have explained.

                  You are arguing reverse logic, as if it is the proper burden of proof to show that a statement doesn’t mean what it says, rather than the obvious fact that the burden is on you to prove otherwise. The fact of critical posts on the page doesn’t provide any proof, as I demonstrated, and the “likes’ are more evidence that you are wrong. You haven’t met your burden, and I have none. I’m treating a website quote as meaning what it says. You are seeing conspiracies.

                  Your argument is ridiculous and untenable at this point, and all you are doing is stamping your feet and insisting otherwise. You said you’re dropping it, and you should. You’re just convincing me that you have some kind of agenda.

                  • I’ll leave it there, then. As I’ve said, I find the evidence compelling that the page in question is not representative of the views of her supporters, but I see that you will not accept that conclusion without proof that I cannot possibly provide.

                    If you are at all interested in what her actual supporters are saying, I would suggest this well written piece: http://thebigslice.org/my-friend-meg-lanker-simons-not-who-the-right-thinks-she-is/

                    Let me be clear that I have no idea whether or not Meg is guilty of what she is accused of doing. That said, I think it is undeniable that the public treatment she and her supporters have received prior to any finding of guilt is unjust, and I think your post contributes in its small way to enabling this.

        • Unfortunately, my last post on this thread was in response to the first new post at the time, and then I signed off and didn’t really get back online over the weekend. So I missed this:

          Ed inadvertently did exactly what he accused me of doing, but that I did not and DO NOT do—he applied his personal political loyalties to an instance of misbehaving progressives, and convinced himself that there they really weren’t misbehaving.

          Guess what? Now it’s MY turn to be pissed off. Would you care to point to any comment that I made in this discussion, which asserted that progressives “weren’t misbehaving” in this case? To the contrary, I specifically made comments acknowledging that some liberals are no doubt defending this woman irrationally, and that liberals are plenty capable of both irrational and unethical behavior. Unless there’s something above that I said in a fugue state and can’t find now, then exactly nothing I’ve posted on this thread took a position on the presence of absence of progressive misbehavior. My discussion here was about bias, and specifically about bias in ascribing this particular unethical quotation to particular people who didn’t utter it.

          You’re arguing that something is true in absence of evidence, and I’m arguing that things aren’t known when evidence is absent. I don’t give a damn whether there are or are not progressives who support what this woman purportedly did. I don’t take a firm position on the topic one way or the other. My soft position, however, is that there probably ARE. There are always stupid people, of every political stripe, who will entertain support for any stupid or vicious action that denigrates the opposite side. THAT’S the exact thing I’m taking a position against here, because it’s something I see happening with frightful frequency, coming from both the left and the right, and every layer of this story is an example of that. Somebody figures its okay to ascribe an invented misogynist quotation to a conservative because they figure that’s what conservatives really think anyway, and then someone else figures its okay to ascribe an invented amoral statement to liberals because they figure that’s what liberals really think.

          Why the HELL would you think it’s my opinion that that’s something conservatives do and liberals don’t. Honest to God, the likeliest answer I can come up with is that your interpretation of everything I’ve been saying has been based on what you EXPECT a progressive to say. Whatever the case, you’re out of line with that accusation, just as I would be out of line if I accused you of denying all conservative wrongdoing. That’s not something I’ve done; but you did erroneously regard me as having done so earlier. That’s not something I would accuse you of because I know you’re not stupid. I had thought you would have come to the same conclusion about me.

          Am I biased, Jack? You’re damn right I am! I’m not a robot, and I’m not God. I have political preconceptions and a set of personal experiences that skew my perspective in a way that centers the world on my own line of sight. So do you. I’m not entirely sure that that’s something you acknowledge. You make far to many statements accusing interlocutors of being blinded by partisanship while also declaring yourself to be absolutely fair. If I stick around in these comments, I am hereby making it my personal mission to beat this all-important message into the minds of you and your commenters on all sides: that pointing out someone else’s biases does not absolve a person of one’s own.

          • Well, since the featured quote was part of the act of setting up a Facebook page celebrating a woman’s intentional misrepresentation of a group, a gender and a point of view by putting words in a sock puppet’s mouth, and my post suggested that you were quick to excuse the act by accepting the theory that, in fact, this too was the actually dastardly conservatives at work rather than warped progressives, and, in fact, you were quick to accept the now banned H’s proffered out, I think that qualifies as “progressives ‘weren’t misbehaving’ in this case”, no? You, along with H, chose to argue that the misbehaving progressive-supporting quote-makers weren’t progressives, but really lying, masquerading conservatives–isn’t saying that it wasn’t really idiotic progressives defending the woman but conservatives pretending to be idiotic progressives the same as saying progressives weren’t misbehaving? I see the confusion—you thought I meant “here’s an example of bad behavior by progressives, and biased Ed is defending it.” That’s not what I meant. You did nothing of the sort. What you did do is happily accept the claim that progressives didn’t misbehave because the wrongdoers weren’t progressives, but people pretending to be progressives. There are two ways to argue that “progressives weren’t misbehaving.” 1) The conduct isn’t misbehavior and 2) The miscreants weren’t progressives. I was suggesting 2)…you are saying, correctly, that you never suggested 1).

            It’s all a bit fuzzy to me at this point, since once these threads have gone past the 50 mark and a couple of days have passed since the last volley, I really can’t trace the thing. That’s what I meant, though. If that helps.

            • I’m not sure that it does help, but I’m even less sure that it can be helped, so I’ll just let the whole thing go. I would, however, like to ask what “h s” did that was a ban-able offense. If it’s in this thread, I don’t see it.

              • The post that resulted in the ban was spammed. Two cardinal sins—1) Simply making the same assertion over and over again, without bothering to deal fairly with rebuttals and 3) resorting to pure insults that had no basis in the thread. The first was worse than the second, frankly.

              • For what it’s worth, I was watching this thread, and the only post from h s that is now missing was in reply to Jack’s May 4, 2013 at 4:48 pm comment: “I am right. You’re just twisting on the hook.” The comment was, “Italics. Good argument.”

                • For what it’s worth, that’s not how it works. That post was the one I spammed to ban H S. The post that got him banned was his last one. My standards for banning are not 100% consistent, but essentially, other than off topic political rants and gratuitous incivility, the main trigger is relentless agenda pursuit and disrespect/ contempt/ rudeness/ accusations directed at the moderator. Anyone can say that I’m wrong, misguided, misinformed or otherwise, but you better not be abusive while doing it, not to me—you’re my guest. Do regulars here get more rope? Absolutely, because they’ve paid their dues, proven their sincerity, and demonstrated good faith. “You people are sick” is totally off the grid for a guest here, because I am NOT “sick,” and if that’s going to be the basis of the discussion, I don’t want to hear from you.

  12. You just said “NOBODY would do” what I just showed that at least somebody did, so as far as this goes, you are wrong:

    “Why would someone do that? How does signalling your approval of an insincere statement posted to bring criticism on the poster’s ideological enemies when in fact you disagree with the statement, like the poster advance the “liker’s” interests? NOBODY would do that!”

    Now, you may well be correct that it is impossible for me to prove that ALL the “likers” are phony (though this may well be wholly due to issues epistemic access), but I think you are mistaken about where the burden of proof lies here. You’re the one attributing this quote to a group of individuals and criticizing them for holding it, yet you can’t provide any unambiguous evidence that anyone in that group actually holds the view. You’re reduced to the position of requiring me to prove a negative that can’t technologically be done, and since I can’t do impossible things, you must be right.

    Sorry, but that’s where I have to stop.

  13. Someone named “Brad” who wouldn’t obey the rules and give me a valid email left some news. You’ll need a real email address to get another comment posted, Brad, but thanks for this:

    “The plot thickens. There’s evidence now that her husband was involved and that they had somebody picked out to frame for the threats, whom they chose because he expressed the opinion that he should be allowed to carry a fire arm in public for self defense.

    This is no longer a freedom of speech issue. This is now serious business and I really could not be happier to see this ‘person’ go down and help reveal that these people should be taken as seriously as Westboro Baptists and the KKK.”

    • The slight irony being that if Meg were able to carry a weapon on campus, she’d be able to defend herself very effectively from anyone who might wish to “hatefuck” her.

      That her husband sees this as a bad thing is…

      Well, it is part and parcel of the Logic of those who hold to progressive (by which I mean “totalitarian and statist”) views.

    • That’s not new. It doesn’t add anything to the discussion. And what’s with putting person in scare-quotes. You ‘people’ are sick.

      • You’re out of control, “h”. Ask Brad about the scare quotes…you did get the part where I disallowed his post, right? And that this post was a quote? Go away. You’re not up to this.

    • Yup! That proves it all right! Someone’s hearsay quote of an anonymous blogger friend claiming without proof that he set up a fake site, which at best is an admission of dishonesty making the admission itself dubious, since you can’t believe people who think creating fake sites, a lie, is something one should do anyway. Got it.

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