Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Poster Children for Not Thinking Things Through

The current edition of the JBS
Bulletin contains one of the most astonishingly wrong-headed statements ever published in the history of that organization.

It is either a product of culpable incompetence -- both authorial and editorial -- or a deliberate intent to mislead the members regarding an indispensable constitutional principle.

On page 8 of the issue, in the "Talking Points" column -- a feature intended to serve as a template for member-written letters to the editor, and contributions to call-in radio talk shows -- Jack McManus addresses the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. He mentions her membership in La Raza, a Ford Foundation-funded lobby that promotes the Latino version of collectivist identity politics.

Jack also invokes the dreaded specter of Aztlan, a rallying cry for student radicals and full-time purveyors of ethnic grievance. The notion behind that odd term is that Mexico, through "demographic warfare," will re-conquer the southeastern United States.

In terms of plausibility and immediacy, this "threat" finishes a distant second behind the prospect of an invasion of the Earth by the planet Romulus.

Yes, I did my share to inflate the Aztlan threat as a JBS writer and speaker. Sure, I'm aware that this demented dream pollutes the minds of many people whose mouths are firmly fastened to the teat of some tax-exempt foundation or the other.
I'm also willing to change my mind when the evidence demands it.

Recently it's become clear to me that, first of all, the immigration wave from Mexico -- both legal and illegal -- is abating, as the U.S. economy collapses; second, that the all-encompassing desire of most Mexicans residing in the U.S., however they got here, is to make money, not to be agents of an ethnic
revanche. Which is to say that Mexicans are pretty much like Euro-Americans, only darker and blessed with superior culinary skills.

Jack is notoriously content to recline on assumptions he's too lazy to challenge, and the JBS is too tightly welded to the petty nationalist wing of the Republican Party to change its line regarding the "reconquista" and Aztlan plot.

So Jack trots out this glue factory-bound horse for a ritual flogging. Do the Senators from the state destined for amalgamation into Aztlan know of the Latina nominee's secret affiliations? he inquires; are they willing to surrender their states to Mexican hegemony?

And then he commits a grave sin against sound constitutional understanding, prefaced by a routine invocation of original intent:
"Judges serving the nation, not only at the level of the Supreme Court but every level, should have only the Constitution of the United States as their guide. Nowhere does the Constitution contain authorization for the nation to break apart and commit suicide." (Emphasis added.)

Good grief.

Could Jack possibly subscribe to the position expressed in that second sentence?
Could he be that ignorant of essential principles found under the heading, "Constitutionalism 101"?

The Constitution did not create a "nation" or a "national" government; it created a federated republic of sovereign states that were perfectly capable of reclaiming their sovereignty when necessary. This would mean secession from the voluntary union, or what Jack would describe as the nation "break[ing] apart."

This wasn't "authorized" by the Constitution, a document that authorized a central or "general" government to do a few specific things, and specifying a few -- very few -- powers alienated by the states as a condition of membership in the Union. The powers thus alienated by the states did not include the right of peaceful withdrawal, an understanding made explicit in the ratification debates, and even the constitutions, of several original states.

Any constitutionalist should understand those principles. Assuming that Jack has actually read the magazine for which he has served as nominal publisher for a couple of decades, he would have been exposed to numerous articles elucidating this understanding. At least one of them was written by the incomparable Joseph Sobran, whom Jack so thoughtfully threw off the masthead of
The New American eleven years ago.

Jack might also have run across an elegant expression of those principles in a panegyric to Robert E. Lee by E. Merrill Root, which was published in the March 1972 American Opinion magazine -- and republished in the October 27, 1997 issue of The New American.

Here are a few typical paragraphs on the subject from an article I published six years ago, a review of the film
Gods and Generals:

"Like the other southern states from which Lincoln sought to requisition troops, Virginia did not initially favor secession. But ... Virginians equally opposed punishing states that had exercised their right to withdraw from the Union. That right was explicitly reserved in the ratification acts of Virginia, New York, and Rhode Island, when those states approved the U.S Constitution.

The right of secession was recognized at the 1814 Hartford Convention, where New England states opposed to the War of 1812 threatened to withdraw from the Union. As historian Charles Adams observes, `There were secessionist cries from some Northern states over the enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Act, the whiskey tax, the War of 1812, the admission of Texas, and the Mexican War. The Abolitionist party proposed that the Northern, nonslave states secede from the ... Union with the Southern states.'

Prior to 1861, Americans in both the North and the South understood that the Union existed among the states, rather than above them. As Virginia jurist Abel P. Upshur summarized in his study
The Federal Government: Its True Nature and Character: `The Federal Government is the creature of the States. It is not a party to the Constitution, but the result of it--the creation of that agreement which was made by the States as parties. It is a mere agent, entrusted with limited powers for certain specific objects, which powers are enumerated in the Constitution. '

Through secession a state would reclaim the powers it had lent to the federal government. And the option to secede represented the ultimate check on the consolidation of power in Washington, something the Framers of the Constitution strove to prevent. `Too much provision cannot be made against consolidation,' warned Federalist Fisher Ames during the Convention of Massachusetts. `The State Governments represent the wishes and feelings, and local interests of the people. They are the safeguard and ornament of the Constitution; they will protract the period of our liberties; they will afford a shelter against the abuse of power, and will be the natural avengers of our violated rights.'"

It may be said that Jack's point doesn't deal with succession per se, but rather the threat of stealthy conquest of a portion of the United States and the subsumation thereof by a foreign power -- in this case that notorious global aggressor, Mexico, whose garrisons dot the globe and whose troops are embroiled in dozens of distant conflicts.

Whoops -- that's actually a description of the government headquartered in Washington,
not Mexico City.

In any case, if the point above or something like it was Jack's point, he should have made it, rather than dashing off a knee-jerk nationalist bromide that effectively inverts decades of constitutional instruction by the JBS.

Remember: This was the "Talking Points" column, which is intended to frame the arguments used by members.
As President of the Society, Jack is in charge of the organization's official ideology. So when he starts emitting talking points that embrace the monolithic, unitary, nationalist perspective, the resulting damage can be substantial.

To begin with, it sows confusion in the ranks regarding one of the Society's ongoing "action" items, which is to support the passage of "state sovereignty" resolutions by their state legislatures.

Hmmm... doesn't talk of state sovereignty unmistakably imply a belief in the right of states to secede, thereby causing "the nation to break apart and commit suicide"?

Not for the first time since I was thrown overboard by the JBS, I find myself asking: Is anybody in Appleton actually
editing what the organization publishes?

There is a significant blind spot in Appleton (an expression, once again, referring to the JBS upper management, not the people at the home office who actually work for a living) when it comes to immigration.

There's a willingness to suspend what had been a pretty comprehensive suspicion of federal agencies in order to embrace that large and growing section of the Department of Homeland Security formerly called the Border Patrol.

There's a willingness to ignore some of the fundamental economic principles implicated in the question of immigration, a mistake Ron Paul has never made.

Most disturbingly, there is a willingness on the part of JBS upper management -- which is otherwise so famously fastidious about maintaining its image and stiff-arming "extremists" and bigots -- to embrace some pretty dubious people within the immigration restriction movement.

Some of them -- such as the monomaniacal Arizona state representative Russell Pearce, and Pearce's oleaginous buddy, the Nazi agitator J.T. Ready -- are so deeply entrenched in the mire of unabashed bigotry they would be difficult to locate with a plumber's helper.

Others, such as Chris Simcox, founder and former leader of one of the two major factions of the Minutemen and candidate for the U.S. Senate, are rank with the odor of opportunism and petty corruption. Simcox himself has a very troubled personal background. He is also notoriously prone to misconduct regarding the one thing I know Appleton cares about, money, having raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for the supposed purpose of building an "Israeli-style security fence" on the U.S.-Mexican border -- only to call off the project after stringing up a few hundred yards' worth of desultory barbed wire fencing.

Many of his former allies have accused Simcox of defrauding them. And now that he's a product peddled by the Beltway PR firm Diener Consultants, Simcox is regularly given time on Fox "news" to regurgitate neo-con soundbites.

And even when he's not advancing the cause of the Republican brand of totalitarianism, Simcox remains
a very ripe target for leftist "watchdog" groups.

The organization Simcox founded is in bad odor right now because of a perfectly hideous crime carried out by
Shawna Forde -- once identified as a rising "leader" by the Washington chapter of Simcox's Minuteman Civil Defense Corps -- and two associates, one of them apparently involved in marijuana smuggling.

Forde and two comrades are accused of the May 30 murders of 29-year-old Raul Flores and his 9-year-old daughter Brisenia in Pima, Arizona. Raul was allegedly involved in narcotics smuggling. Forde and two henchmen disguised themselves as law enforcement officers, invaded the Flores home, and murdered Raul and Brisenia while the horrified mother called 911 and fought back with a shotgun.

This robbery was intended to be the first of several operations designed to steal money from suspected assets of Mexican drug cartels. Forde and two henchmen disguised themselves as law enforcement officers. The money they intended to steal would be used to fund Forde's immigration restriction efforts, or, what's much the same thing from her perspective, her erratic and self-destructive lifestyle.

Simcox had nothing to do with that hideous crime. He was not "linked" to Forde beyond his role as ringmaster of the Psycho Circus that the Minuteman movement is becoming. He can't be held morally, let alone legally, responsible for the actions of Forde and her accomplices.

Shawna Forde and her alleged accomplices in murder (l-r) Albert Robert Gaxiola and Jason Eugene Bush.

But this is not the relevant standard where the question is one of impact Simcox's background and associations would have on the Birch Society's "image."

JBS upper management proudly lists Simcox as a member of its Speaker's Bureau. These are the same managers who cast out Joseph Sobran because -- as a freelance writer for whom every dollar was a victory -- he sold his column to all willing buyers, including the Spotlight, and he was willing to address the Institute for Historical Review in exchange for an honorarium.

"Links" and "associations" of that kind simply won't do, sniffed JBS management as they attempted to dictate on the matter to someone who was never an employee.

Rest in God's peace, angel: Nine-year-old murder victim Brisenia Flores.

Oh, and this is the same upper management that once fired a prolific Senior Editor on the pretext that something he wrote on his personal blog just
might -- someday, if the planets aligned just so -- provoke a lawsuit, not that there was any evidence that such a lawsuit was being contemplated by anyone, or even that a lawsuit against the writer would implicate the JBS in any way. But, hey, it could happen, in the same sense that it could rain cheeseburgers tomorrow, so under the bus that Senior Editor must be thrown.

In this we see JBS management's proprietary blend of hypocrisy and cowardice. But, as with Jack's breezy dismissal of the constitutional principle of secession, the Simcox matter is another illustration of the fact that those guys are afflicted with an adolescent inability to think matters through.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Previews of Coming Detractions

"We know there's going to be an attack piece on the John Birch Society coming out in the New York Times," intones Art Thompson in his most recent vlog. When it comes, he insists, it will demonstrate that The Powers That Be are "afraid of our potential" and provoked by the "growth" and successes of the JBS.

I've been aware of the impending
Times piece on the JBS for about a week, since I was contacted by a reporter for the paper and spent more than an hour being interviewed by him. I answered his questions as candidly and completely as I could.

I'm fairly confident that I know the general contours of the piece he intends to write. It will not be flattering. Nor will it be a simple "attack" piece, as Thompson maintains. It will almost certainly place the JBS squarely in the center of the constellation of "right-wing hate groups."
And for this, Art Thompson and Jack McManus have nobody to blame but themselves.

After I was fired, the current JBS management attempted -- briefly and unpersuasively -- to make the case that my supposedly defamatory treatment of certain abhorrent people (i.e. the repulsive Mark Levin) exposed the organization to a potential libel action. In fact, someone in upper management quietly circulated the story that I had actually been sued for libel. The first claim was ridiculous on its face. The second was a puerile lie.

What really rankles about all of this, of course, is that the decision to fire me as a supposed liability of that sort was made by Jack McManus, a person who spent years propagating anti-Semitic theological and political theories, which were captured on audio and videotape, for the edification of schismatic Catholic groups.
His eagerness to propagate those views eventually came to the attention of ... Art Thompson, at the time Director of Field Activities, who played a pretty significant role in the events that led to Jack's ouster as JBS President.

In one frantic memo, in fact, Art seemed to suggest that Jack was actually preparing to attack the JBS in collaboration with its detractors. He also pointed out that Jack had been evangelizing on behalf of anti-Semitism for about at least 3 1/2 years, and perhaps as many as ten years, "on our nickel."

Art's recommendation was to put together a short collection of clips from Jack's anti-Jewish diatribes, and document carefully JBS management's effort to get him to "do the right thing" -- namely, to resign "as a retirement move."

That's more or less what happened. Mind you, Jack wasn't
fired; he was forced to play a reduced role and take a reduced salary, and a position on the JBS Council. His letter actually said, in almost so many words, that he was resigning in order to spend more time with his family.

No, really.

A few years later, Art -- who was working behind the scenes to bring down Vance Smith -- was pre-emptively fired by Vance. Somehow Art ended up making common cause with ... Jack McManus, most likely out of shared antipathy for Vance. Just prior to Vance's ouster, his supporters began to circulate a compilation of video clips I call "Jack McManus Sings the Nuremberg Variations" -- that is, conspicuously ugly excerpts from those same anti-Semitic speeches.

I was among those lobbied by Vance's side. I was asked, "How would this look on the evening news? On CNN? What use would Morris Dees make of this kind of thing?" My question in reply was two-fold: Where did they get the clips, and what use did they plan to make of them?

I didn't get an answer, but it's obvious: The idea of blackmailing Jack actually began with Art Thompson.

Repulsive as Jack's speeches were, I found blackmail to be even worse. So when it looked as if Vance's effort to use the
compromat against Jack would succeed, I resigned from the JBS; I simply couldn't be associated with an organization in which personnel disputes were settled through blackmail. (That sort of thing, I had winsomely supposed, might take place in the Mirror Universe JBS, but not in this dimension's version.)

Two days later, Vance was gone, and I was entreated back on staff. The supplicant who persuaded me was ... Jack McManus.

Almost exactly a year later, Jack -- the guy whose vulnerability to blackmail had left the organization in critical jeopardy, the one whose anti-Semitic track record presently imperils the organization -- was among those who decided to fire me for the supposed offense of maintaining a personal blog they didn't control.

I've recounted this before. It's worth reviewing again now, even if the Times never publishes its envisioned JBS profile. I've anticipated that the JBS would find itself in serious trouble, both from a PR perspective and potentially from federal scrutiny, owing to the current management's myopia about the unsavory correspondences it has cultivated in recent years.

As I've pointed out previously, it almost seems as if the people running things in Appleton have set out to validate the "sandwich smear" -- the old rhetorical tactic of squeezing a reference to the JBS between two slices of ugliness (as in the phrase, "radical groups like the Ku Klux Klan, the John Birch Society, and the National Socialist Movement").

I began this blog as a way of protecting my reputation against the scurrilities Appleton routinely deploys against those who have left the staff under less-than-favorable circumstances; it also serves as my "Correction, Please!" column for dealing with sundry pieces of official dishonesty from JBS management.

Should the
Times publish the article, and my quotes feature prominently therein, I fully expect that Art and his homies will insist that I've consummated my fall from grace, that I'm now an amalgam of Judas, Maleagant, and Benedict Arnold, that I've joined the ranks of the Raizgul, that I'm an apostate and sinner and sell-out. They will pile on my shoulders the sum of all the rage and hate against the Establishment Media felt by Birchers from Robert Welch down.

As long as this blog is available, people will have access to the truth. They'll be able to see the unalloyed hypocrisy of a group of people who would fire me for writing a blog, but merely demote Jack McManus for having a full-time sideline as an anti-Semitic demagogue. Readers will have access to my warnings about
the repellent figures who have adhered to the JBS during the two years or so that it was devoted monomaniacally to dealing with the "Brown Peril" from Mexico.

Jack is finishing an extended speaking tour for the JBS. Right now,
he is the public face of the John Birch Society. He is also their largest liability, although Art Thompson has to be considered at least a respectable second in that category, given that he was the one who appointed Jack to be JBS president -- just a few years after doing everything he could to remove him as a threat to the organization's well-being.

The JBS is not threatened by the New York Times; negative publicity would be an improvement over being consigned, ala Spinal Tap, to the "Where Are They Now?" file. The persistent dishonesty and bad judgment of the organization's upper management represents a far graver threat.

I've lived and worked in Washington, D.C. and spent a lot of time in the company of Establishment journalists. I know better than to assume that I know a stranger based on a single phone call, of any duration. That being said, I will offer this defense of the reporter from the New York Times who interrupted my workday a week ago: The first thing this fellow, a two-time cancer survivor, did when he called me was to ask after Korrin's health.

This offers a very commendable contrast to the conduct of the former friends who fired me in October 2006: Since that time, they've offered not a single syllable of sympathy for Korrin, or anyone else in our family.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Kiss Up, Kick Down

Mark Levin,
JBS management's idea
of a conservative media figure

After I was tossed overboard by Appleton in October 2006, several JBS members and TNA subscribers made inquiries regarding my sudden disappearance.

In one quite typical reply, Alan Scholl -- the chief instigator of my termination -- insisted that among my supposed sins was that I had attacked " a nationally known radio talk show host" -- specifically, Mark Levin.

Alan went to some lengths to defend Levin's supposed honor and conservative bona fides.
He also insisted that I had "threatened physical beatings on [sic] this man, and three other nationally known conservatives," including that iconic "conservative" pairing of somebody he called "Hannity and Combes."

The latter name, of course, is correctly spelled "Colmes," as in Alan Colmes, a notable liberal television and radio personality. In the essay to which Alan referred, I never mentioned Mr. Colmes at all.

In his handling of these critical details Alan displayed all of the honesty and competence for which he was rewarded with a position of responsibility in the present JBS kakistocracy.

In that same e-mail -- which was something of a template for replies to other inquiries -- Alan also berated me for placing "posters of Nazis with the emblems on the uniforms replaced with the Republican Party emblem on [my] site," something that simply wasn't to be done, no matter how much the agenda and actions of the Bushified GOP savored of national socialism.

"Will cannot refrain from personal name-calling and ad-hominem attacks, outbursts of anger and threats on [sic] people with whom he disagrees," lied Alan, an individual from whom lies flow as effortlessly as bile from a ruptured liver.

I don't disagree that my rhetoric takes on a certain edge when I'm dealing with powerful or influential people who are promoting, implementing, or defending abhorrent policies -- aggressive war, wealth redistribution, torture, and so forth. But my iron-clad rule is this: I only attack those who are more powerful or influential than myself, or someone who has abused someone less powerful than himself.

Yes, I'll decorticate a Sean Hannity or Mark Levin -- someone whose audience is in the millions -- or elected boobs of various kinds, or policemen who strangle 12-year-old girls or force helpless grandmothers to "ride the Taser."

I've been known to write and say nasty things about neo-Nazi bullies. As this blog attests, I spare no arrows in my dealings with people who have maliciously wronged me and my family.

But I don't abuse people who simply disagree with me; I never have, I never will, and Alan knows that he cannot substantiate that accusation, a lie he put into circulation with the arrogant indifference to truth that is a defining trait of what passes for his character.

I never kick people who are down; I only kick up, as it were. That is exactly the opposite of the priorities that govern the craven children running the JBS: Their approach is to kiss up, and kick down.

They will go through astonishing contortions to avoid offending genuinely powerful and consequential figures, while finding some excuse to target marginal and powerless figures as if by doing so they demonstrate boldness and leadership.

There's a lot I could say on that general subject, but I want to restrict myself, for the nonce, to a couple of specific illustrations involving those sanctified beings known as "nationally known radio talk show host[s]."

Alan's comments, as excerpted above, were part of a dishonest depiction of an essay I published in September 2006 entitled "I Can't Stand Bullies."

For all of his mendacity Alan is bright enough to recognize the essay was a satire, if only because it was clearly labeled as such in order to clarify matters for simple-minded folks like him. It was inspired by an exchange on Mark Levin's unbearable radio program, in which Levin -- in a fit of adolescent malice typical of his rancid personality -- threatened a caller, claiming that he could "kick [his] ass."
I cited Levin, along with Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly, as examples of the dominant bully faction in the GOP-aligned Right.

As honest readers of the essay can see, I challenged each of them
to a debate, and, if any of them wanted to demonstrate his tough-guy cred, to a refereed fight -- a boxing or wrestling match, not a street brawl. Obviously, an invitation to debate is not a threat of physical violence.

Sure, challenging someone to a fight is an invitation to physical violence, but it is hardly the same as a simple criminal threat: You're giving the other individual a fair chance to defend himself, or to decline the invitation.

Alan, who claims to have been quite the butt-kicker in his day, should understand this. He almost certainly does. Which means, once again, that he simply lied about what I had written.
Each of the three prominent GOP media shills at one time or another has bullied smaller, easily intimidated people. O'Reilly famously tried to bulldoze Jeremy Glick, a small, meek, but admirably strong-willed young man whose father was killed on 9-11. Hannity has been known to spew tough-guy talk out the side of his mouth when he's dealing with callers or otherwise insulated from reprisals.

And as for Levin .... Just a few weeks ago, Levin had an on-air conversation with a female caller, a typically misguided Obama supporter that ended with the following refined and genteel exchange:

LEVIN: Let me ask you a question. Why do you hate this country?

CALLER: No, I love this country.

LEVIN (angrily shouting): I SAID WHY DO YOU HATE MY COUNTRY! WHY DO YOU HATE MY CONSTITUTION? WHY DO YOU HATE MY DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE?... Answer me this, are you a married woman? Yes or no?


LEVIN: Well I don’t know why your husband doesn’t put a gun to his temple. Get the hell out of here.

This is the fellow whose honor and reputation Alan was so eager to protect.

When a young conservative blogger named Conor Friedersdorff publicized Levin's atrocious treatment of an inoffensive woman, Levin and his chums -- sensing that Mr. Friedersdorff was a gentle and vulnerable target -- ganged up on him. To his credit, the young blogger more than held his own, and by doing so he helped demonstrate, once again, just how deeply infected the Right has become with bully-boy authoritarianism.

Levin, whose arse is his arsenal, has retaliated against Friedersdorff (and other critics, including self-designated "Crunchy Con" Rod Dreher) in transparently adolescent fashion.

What was really interesting to me, however, was a defense of Levin published by Robert Stacy McCain, a former Washington Times writer and a pillar of the Washington conservative establishment.

To McCain, Levin's financial success as a radio ranter and author of insipid tracts -- a career he oozed into as a remora attached, at one time or another, to either Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh -- is a good and sufficient rebuttal to his critics, whom McCain likened to socially maladjusted geeks at the prom, looking on with envy as the quarterback canoodles with the Homecoming Queen.

Those who scorn Levin, insisted McCain -- in an essay devoid of satirical intent -- are "wussified," "effete" specimens, "beta males" who "have never driven 110 mph, never spent a night in jail, and never won a fightfight in their lives"; pathetic ectomorphs "who never played in a rock band or sold a pound of weed or dove from a 50-foot cliff into an abandoned rock quarry."

Of the woman assailed by Levin, McCain -- who, as a neo-Confederate of sorts (a label I do not regard as a pejorative) should understand something about defending the honor of even obnoxious women -- insisted: "Levin insulted her because she deserved to be insulted" (italics in original).

"One more thing," McCain said in conclusion, "Mark Levin is a big man. His nasal tenor voice might lead the uninformed listener to picture him as a diminuitive nebbish. He is not. He's the size of a Big 10 linebacker and I'd bet dollars to donuts Levin could take out Rod Dreher with a single punch."

Hey, Alan, pay attention, OK? This was an example of a threatened physical assault, and it came at the end of an essay not intended as a parody.

Hey, "Big Man" Levin: My invitation to a mediated debate and/or refereed fight remains open.

Hey, Stacy (snicker) McCain, our supposed tutor in the manly arts:

I drive insanely fast -- sometimes up to 110 MPH -- every time I travel alone through Nevada (although I'm not so reckless when I'm traveling with my family).

I've been arrested in three countries and jailed in Egypt. I've never sold weed in any quantity, or been stupid enough to dive in an abandoned rock quarry, but I've been in dozens of rock bands and cut more than one album.

No, I wasn't the starting quarterback on our state championship football team.

I was the starting fullback -- the guy who spent most of the game knocking defensive tackles and linebackers on their butts to clear a hole for our extraordinary tailback.

While I've not been in a fistfight in decades (and don't miss the experience one bit), I've never lost a Judo match and not long ago competed and placed third in a wrestling tournament against kids less than half my age.

The last time I nearly ended up in a fistfight was almost exactly a year ago, when I called off a guy more than a head taller (and twenty years younger) than myself who was abusing a young woman. I got in his face and told him: "Leave her alone, and back the hell off!" He looked at me, and did.

The Homecoming Queen? I married her, you impotent windsock, and we have six children.

Levin might be the "size" of a Big 10 linebacker, at least in aggregate body mass, however unremarkably organized.

At age 46 I can still bench-press as much as an NFL defensive tackle, even though my own profile and body composition currently reflect a terribly sedentary occupation and the vagaries of a very difficult domestic situation.

This isn't meant to be merely a sterile exercise in adolescent boasting. It is that, of course, but I also have a point: Nobody in his right mind would consider me an "effete," "wussified" geek. By Stacy (snicker) McCain's checklist it appears that I hardly qualify as a "beta male" (the authentic alpha males I know don't spend time fretting about whether or not they're alpha; they simply are).

And yet I, just like presumed wusses Rod Dreher and Conor Friedersdorff (neither of whom deserves that epithet), despise Mark Levin and other "conservative" bullies of his ilk.

They are bullies, which means that they are cowards. They're not bold individualists; they're second- or third-string opportunistic predators who travel in packs and prey on the weak and pitiful.

They are also typical of the people whose favor JBS management was so eager to court that they threw me and my family under the bus.

One last item deserves some attention. By way of illustrating just how evil the Republican media apparatus had become by late 2006, I present the following video of GOP/Christian Right radio personality Michael Reagan, circa September 2006, suggesting that Arab infants should be sodomized with explosives and murdered, along with their mothers:



This kind of stuff was in wide circulation prior to the mid-term election. Republican media figures were defending aggressive war, open-ended extra-judicial detention, and torture; they were eviscerating the Bill of Rights, abolishing the habeas corpus guarantee, and denigrating as unpatriotic anybody who was not part of George W. Bush's authoritarian cult.

Some of us, recognizing a certain foul aroma in this agenda, were willing to call it by its proper name: Fascism.

Others, like Alan and his playmates in JBS upper management, were more concerned with currying favor with the "in" crowd, even if that meant they'd end up doing "The Wave" at the Nuremberg Rally.

"This blog and it's [sic] content is [sic] certainly not the image that I, or the others who are leaders in the JBS project, or should project," sniffed Alan in reply to an inquiry about my termination, exhibiting his familiar mixture of sanctimony and dubious verbal skills. "Is this an image for the JBS that you condone?"

It's all about image, is it? That being the case, apparently in what passes for their wisdom Alan and his cohorts decided it was more important for the JBS to be seen on the side of Mark Levin, Michael Reagan, and their ilk, than to tolerate the presence on staff of someone unwilling to abide their vituperative bullying of the helpless and their support for mass murder.