Monday, October 29, 2007

The Vast Right-Wing Illiteracy

You have to assume that most people do not want to be thought stupid. Everyone speaks (or writes) without thinking sometimes -- but part of being a person who is not stupid is having the capacity to recognize, when it is pointed out to you, that you have said or done something that is extraordinarily-- well... stupid. So it's logical to assume that if you have said something that is unbelievable, incredibly stupid, and you refuse to acknowledge it even when it is pointed out to you by many, many people, you must be stupid to a degree that is truly record-breaking.

With that introduction, I give you The Dread Pundit Bluto:

Glenn Greenwald, as he had promised in his post at Salon, has forwarded the email he says he received from Colonel Steven A. Boylan, Public Affairs Officer for General Petraeus.

The parts that Greenwald chose not to publish tend to contradict his characterization of the email as "bizarre" and "unsolicited". Furthermore, while Greenwald claims that the email doesn't dispute his paranoid ravings about the military working with rightwing bloggers in the Beauchamp affair, it in fact dismisses them out-of-hand, and quite properly. Greenwald has also redacted the parts of the email that highlight his shoddy research.

In fact, I'd say that Greenwald exceeds mere exaggeration and mischaracterization and flirts with outright lies in that section of his post. Colonel Boylan has not confirmed the authenticity of the letter, and the possibility remains that Greenwald, who has been alleged to use sock puppets in the past, might have faked it.

I hope the Colonel did write it, and, if he did, that he gets a commendation for it.

Below is what Greenwald claims is the full text of the email. The portions Greenwald chose to leave out are in boldface[.]

Here are the first two paragraphs of the Greenwald post to which Bluto refers [bolds are mine]:
I received this morning an unsolicited email from Col. Steven A. Boylan, the Public Affairs Officer and personal spokesman for Gen. David G. Petraeus (see UPDATE III below). The subject line of the email -- which I am publishing in full, unedited form here -- is "The growing link between the U.S. military and right-wing media and blogs," which is the title of the post I wrote earlier this week regarding the politicization of the Army in Iraq, as evidenced by its constant coordination with, and leaking to, the likes of Matt Drudge, The Weekly Standard, and the most extremist right-wing blogs -- in the TNR/Beauchamp case and also more generally.

I had a prior e-mail exchange with Col. Boylan several months ago when I requested an interview with Gen. Petraeus after he had granted an exclusive interview to far-right partisan Hugh Hewitt (author of the 2006 prescient tract: Painting the Map Red: The Fight to Create a Permanent Republican Majority). In terms of whether the U.S. Army under Petraeus and Boylan is, in fact, becoming a political actor, I'll let multiple passages from Boylan's email to me this morning speak for itself[.]

The only possible conclusion is that Bluto cannot read, or cannot understand what he reads, or both. As many outraged readers have pointed out before me, not only is the full text of the e-mail Glenn received from Boylan posted, but the hot-linked reference to that full text is in the second sentence of Glenn's post. There is no deception, no "redacting," no "deliberate omissions" to hide any "shoddy research" or put the worst face on Boylan's writing -- but that hasn't stopped Bluto, or a raft of other right-wing bloggers, from insisting that there is.

Here is just one example, by Lorie Byrd at Wizbang:
Bluto has posted the full text of the email Glenn Greenwald received from Colonel Steven A. Boylan, Public Affairs Officer for General Petraeus, with the portions that Greenwald omitted from his post characterizing the email as "bizarre" highlighted. Interesting is what Greenwald chose to include in the post, and what he chose to omit.
As at least one comment pointed out, How do Lorie and the other right-wing morons posting on this imagine that Bluto got the full text of the e-mail to begin with? Glenn said in his original post that he would send the full text of the e-mail to anyone who wanted to see it. Here are his exact words: "Anyone who would like to have forwarded to them a copy of the email I received originally can email me and I will send it."

So, to repeat: Glenn posted the full text of Boylan's e-mail online, with a clear and obvious explanatory link, and, in addition, he told readers he would forward a copy of the complete e-mail to anyone who requested it. And after requesting, and receiving, the full text of Boylan's e-mail from Glenn Greenwald, Bluto writes a post with this outright, blatant LIE:
Below is what Greenwald claims is the full text of the email. The portions Greenwald chose to leave out are in boldface:

And immediately following that colon is the full text of Boylan's e-mail to Glenn, with the supposedly left-out parts in boldface -- the same parts that Bluto is only able to copy and paste onto his blog because Glenn sent them to him!

And not only does Bluto do this (twice!) but at least half a dozen high-profile right-wing bloggers approvingly link to Bluto, repeating the very same outright, blatant LIES that definitively prove that every single one of these bloggers is lacking in the most basic and rudimentary reading comprehension skills. Literally.

Glenn himself has a blistering response to Bluto and his fellow illiterates. It's titled "Abject Stupidity Defined." First sentence: " If there is a place with more abject stupidity swirling around than the right-wing blogosphere, I'd like to know where it is."

I would, too.

1 comment:

Bluto said...

Wow, I know Glenn deliberately chose to ignore the first paragraph of my post because, well, that's just what he does.

But, how embarrassing for you to accuse someone of illiteracy when you've failed to understand the post that you're claiming to have read.

Late onset senility or just typical liberal dishonesty?