You Can’t Pick Your Relatives, Or Who Links To You
There are many cheap tricks used against bloggers.
Perhaps the most common is to attribute the views expressed in comments to the blogger. The problem there is that the nature of a comment section is to give people other than the blogger the chance to express an opinion, so one has nothing to do with the other. In addition, as happened to Sarah Palin, sometimes comments are planted for the deliberate purpose of making the blogger (or website organizer) look bad.
There is yet another cheap trick, which is to attribute the views of those who link to the blogger to the blogger.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has used this trick by claiming that linkage by a racist or white supremacist website is evidence that the content linked and the blogger linked reflect the views of the linking website. With regard to Pamela Geller SPLC wrote:
“Her comments were so incendiary, in fact, that several neo-Nazi organizations even ignored the fact that she is Jewish and published her diatribes.”
Geller’s rebuttal to SPLC’s charges is here, but that is somewhat besides the point. If SPLC is going to make the case that views expressed are racist or white supremacist, the mere linkage by racist or white supremacist organizations is not enough, or if it were, Glenn Greenwald would be guilty as well.
On November 13, 2010, I was harshly critical of Greenwald for his post Eric Cantor’s Pledge of Allegiance in which Greenwald suggested that Eric Cantor (R-Va) was disloyal to the United States and had instead pledged allegiance to Israel. Greenwald responded on November 20, (wrongly) claiming that I was accusing him of being anti-semitic. In preparing my further response, I noticed that Greenwald’s original post had been reposted at Stormfront, a white supremacist website.
I could have used the Stormfront reposting against Greenwald, but that would have been as wrong as what the SPLC did to Geller.
Both Greenwald and Geller (and I and every other blogger) deserve their writings to be praised or criticized based on the only thing the writer can control, namely, the content. We are not responsible for people who comment on it, or link to it.
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This would be like calling Chevrolet racist if a Neo-Nazi group recommended Chevy Trucks as their vehicle of choice.
Maybe the government should step in and regulate the internet and put a stop to this. 🙂
If spewing such slander and innuendo is the only thing SPLC has going for it, they're at the end of whatever meaningful existence they had.
I was not alive during the sixties (beyond the last ten days of the decade and not aware of much during that time). The SPLC is only known to me and many like me by the crap they continue to dish up. We recognize no legacy.
Libs & Dems have been pulling dirty tricks for a long time–they're much better at it than Republicans.
Guilt by association? Gee, who would have ever thought the left would become professionals at the tactic? Thank God they also have lies, ideology promoted as fact, manipulation, derisional laughter, insults, lexicon bastardization and false dichotomies as choices otherwise they'd have nothing at all.
BTW, the SPLC is no better than the people they label as haters and Dees is an opportunistic scumbag profiting on fear to maintain his empire. From their website, they crow about their accomplishments in the 2000s…
Removal of a three-ton Ten Commandments monument from the Alabama Supreme Court building.
Well, I feel safer already! lol
The SPLC has been a joke for years. With all that money — more than $150 million, last time I checked — they can't find anything better to do with it than to smear Pamela Geller?
Good Lord, they've lumped her in with Rev. Terry Jones?
The SPLC are irrelevant in today's society. They have way to much influnece for a bunch of irrelevant hacks.
There's certainly something to be said for identifying hate groups and studying them.
But, if you're monitoring all these groups, and scanning the news writing profiles and looking for connections, it's only a matter of time before you become a conspiracy theorist. There are connections *everywhere* between all sorts of people, and they prove nothing.
There has to be some kind of reality check to avoid this. I'm oversimplifying it, but for an organization like that to stay sane, there has to be a basic assumption of good faith in the people you disagree with.
The real problem is in liberalism. Liberals really believe that conservatives act out of hatred, and that mainstream conservatives are simply moderating what they say to make a hateful agenda appear palatable to a gullible public. This comes from a central aspect of liberalism: they view themselves as being part of a movement that is engaged in an epic struggle with hatred, bigotry, etc. Since we're against them, we fall neatly into the role of the bad guys.
And since they honestly believe it, they act on it. The SPLC isn't trying to engage in Machiavellian propaganda, they really think Geller hates Islam and is just as bad as Jones. They really think the Tea Party is full of people who are just waiting to start burning crosses. When liberals scream about Faux News, they really think Glenn Beck is a mastermind controlling hordes of bigots. When they say we oppose Obama because he's black, they really mean it. There's no conspiracy, just a large group of people who share the belief that conservatives are fundamentally motivated by hate.
I have *no* idea how we could convince liberals otherwise. But I think we have to start by taking them at their word and work from there.
@Maggie – The SPLC are relevant because the MSM uses them as a credible source, often to push their liberal agenda. The general public is ignorant of who they are, and their past rep. has yet to be corrected, for obvious reasons – they give credence to the liberal MSM's agenda.
@Ben – Nice thought, but liberals are well aware of what they are doing. Most don't do what they do because they are convinced of *evil* Conservatives "motivated by hate;" they are sold out to their agenda, and use Alinsky tactics to take down any and all opposition. They are warriors, using pen, blogs, smears – all the "weapons" @Cyd mentions – to take down ANYONE who opposes them. Witness Hillary vs. Obama. No one is free from their viciousness. Take no prisoners is their "battle cry."
My question (one I have yet to get a reply to) is: what can be done to these types to stop the slander and malicious personal attacks? Law suits against democracyunderground.com and huffingtonpost.com (multi-million dollar sites) should be possible – and successful, since there is evidence of malice. (JournOList also comes to mind as being a group of reporters caught in malicious collusion, yet were not held to account.) No one is pursuing this. Why? Legal commentary on why no one is trying to stop this heinous practice, please? (And, no – you DO NOT have to "regulate the internet" to hold sites and people accountable for their actions and words, so don't go down that false path, please.)
For SPLC, it's all about the Benjamins: