“Can We Try To Kill This?” The McAuliffe Campaign Responds to Turley Column With Bizarre Question

(MSNBC/via YouTube)

 Yesterday I wrote about reports that Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe’s campaign retained the services of former Clinton counsel Marc Elias. The hiring was astonishing not only because of Elias’ controversial record but a still ongoing special counsel investigation touching on his role in the last election. Elias has challenged past elections and I raised the question of whether he might be part of post-election challenges. When Fox News asked the McAuliffe campaign, the response was . . . well . . . a killer.

The campaign responded to Fox reporter Tyler O’Neil with an email sent by McAuliffe spokesperson Christina Freundlich asking “can we try to kill this.”  She later sent out an email which seemed to claim success in spiking the story without having to respond to questions about Elias’ record.

On its face, it seemed like the McAuliffe campaign was asking Fox to kill the story in a Twitteresque fashion. After all, many in the media killed the Hunter Biden laptop story before the election.  Indeed, even journalism deans have called on reporters to kill stories rather than respond to the merits.

If that seems an unlikely request to Fox News, there is the alternative possibility that Freundlich meant the response to go to media allies or campaign staff to see if they could somehow kill the story. If so, it was a chilling first response to the column. It had that Shakespearean Dick the Butcher feel to it: the first thing we do is kill all the lawyer stories.

The greater controversy however remains the hiring of Elias for any election purpose when a special prosecutor is still in the field presumably looking, among other things, at Elias’ role in the 2020 election. (Elias is not the sole or primary focus of the investigation, which is looking at origins of the Russian conspiracy theories before the last election).

McAuliffe does not appear disturbed by Elias’ highly controversial career or his possible exposure in the Durham investigation. Elias’ former law partner at Perkins Coie was just indicted by Durham. Even if he is not indicted like his former partner, Elias is likely to be featured in any report.

I do not disparage any campaign for lawyering up in what could be a close election and there are a host of pre-election and post-election matters for counsel to address. This is particularly true in the state with recent changes in voting rules. However, there remains the question of why McAuliffe would hire Elias in the midst of the special counsel investigation. That is putting aside the allegations of reporters that Elias and the Clinton campaign lied to them to conceal the funding of the Steele dossier before the last election.

While Elias has denounced Republicans challenging elections, he has unsuccessfully challenged elections where the Republicans prevailed.  He was previously sanctioned by a court in a case challenging a Texas voting law.

After Freundlich asked Fox “Can we try to kill this,” Fox said that she sent an email stating “To dispute the challenges of the election.” Fox described it as “ostensibly responding to an email that did not go through to Fox News.” (For the record, I appear as a Fox contributor).

Freundlich then sent out an equally cryptic tweet saying “I think it’s clear based on this story that we did in fact…kill the story.”  That would suggest that she was asking Fox (and others) to simply kill the story.

It is not clear if Freundlich is saying that she was able to get most of the media to kill the story even while openly calling for (and then celebrating) that blackout. There are some newspapers like the New York Post which ran the story but it is not clear if the Washington Post or other media will do so.  It is doubtful that such media would show the same restraint if a sanctioned Trump lawyer was hired by Youngkin to help manage election issues or challenges.

Elias has enjoyed such protection from inquiry in the past. One of the most glaring examples occurring recently on CNN when its media correspondent Brian Stelter asked Elias “what should we be doing differently?” in covering elections. Stelter accepted Elias’ portrayal of his past work as “pro-democracy” and never asked him about objections from other reporters that he and the campaign lied about the Steele Dossier before the presidential election. Elias called on the media to report with a “pro-democracy slant.”  It is an open call for bias and just assumes that Elias’ work is pro-democracy and, by extension, those who oppose his work are anti-democracy.

 

 

 

470 thoughts on ““Can We Try To Kill This?” The McAuliffe Campaign Responds to Turley Column With Bizarre Question”

  1. Spanky,

    I only count it as bullying if the person being denigrated is aware of the verbal abuse. I don’t have the impression that Turley reads the comments. Am I wrong about that?

    I consider S. Meyer a bully towards multiple people, including towards progressive anonymous commenters and towards JeffSilberman.

    On this page alone, he has said the following to or about anonymous commenters:
    “Here anonymous the Stupid is up to his old tricks. … Anonymous the Stupid throws links at people he hasn’t even read. … As I have said repeatedly, Anonymous the Stupid can use quotes and links, but he has NO CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS. That is why I have labeled him Anonymous the Stupid, which is frequently shortened to ATS. When he plays this game, I think ATS should be marked for who he is so that everyone can recognize what the sequence of posts is all about.” [he repeats this again in another comment]
    “you are Anonymous the Stupid, too Stupid to read or understand what he links to or quotes. … Of course, I use the word Stupid a lot. That is what you are, STUPID. That is how you got your name, Anonymous the Stupid. No one would consider what you do smart. You prey on those that do not know what is happening around them and do not care. You are an animal of prey that kills his own future. Even most in the animal kingdom understand better. You don’t, yet you want to be known by another name than Stupid. … You have NO CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS, no matter how many links or quotes you provide.”
    “When you lie and deceive, you deserve every insult you get.”
    “Then there are the others, whether Jewish or not, who act like Nazis and talk like Stalinists. You belong to that latter group. No, I don’t get along with that group because they place their ideology ahead of the lives of others. They are mean, nasty and hateful people.”
    “That undresses ATS, stuffs him, and makes him ready for the table, November 25.”
    “ATS has self lobotomized himself permitting only filtered material to reach his cerebral cortex.”
    “you will say anything to trick people into believing your lies and factual distortions.”
    “You know nothing, and you can’t seem to extract yourself from your lies and deceit.”
    “You deal with rhetoric, not evidence. That is why you are known as Anonymous the Stupid.”
    “The answers to this according to Anonymous the Stupid are in the video where the architect is testifying. Boy, do you lack intelligence. … You lie and deceive. You provide links that you haven’t even seen and some of them prove you to be stupid. The questions you are being asked prove that as well. You are not credible.”

    A couple of examples of things he said to Jeff:
    “You act like a Nazi and talk like a Stalinist.”
    “That you are a child looking for a grown-up to fight his battles is laughable.”

    If you wish to read these in context, just do an appropriate text search on this page (https://jonathanturley.org/2021/10/29/can-we-try-to-kill-this-the-mcauliffe-campaign-responds-to-turley-column-with-bizarre-question/comment-page-2). Note that S. Meyer sometimes chooses to post anonymously himself, and he is sometimes addressed as “Allan” because he used to post under that name.

    1. Anonymous says:

      “I consider S. Meyer a bully towards multiple people, including towards progressive anonymous commenters and towards JeffSilberman…. A couple of examples of things he said to Jeff:
      “You act like a Nazi and talk like a Stalinist.”
      “That you are a child looking for a grown-up to fight his battles is laughable.”

      ———-

      If ever Meyer says one nice thing about me, I’d be convinced that he just found out I had a week to live….

    2. So, on the one hand you indict S. Meyer, while absolving JeffSilberman with the other for the same behavior… Moreover, Jeff doesn’t seem to agree with you — “Guilty as charged.”

      I can understand how someone in close proximity to another (lives in the same neighborhood, attends the same school or a co-worker, for example) could use the internet to bully someone. But absent an underlying threat of physical harm, what you call bullying on this blog looks more like insults and ad hominen. Using your standard for bullying, S. Meyer has just as much right to claim victim status as Anonymous or Jeff, altho I think it more accurate to conclude that all are simply swapping insults.

      There used to be a children’s rhyme about this: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.

      1. Spanky,

        As I noted, I don’t think the behavior is the same, because in one case, it’s an interaction between two people, where the intended recipient hears what is said, and in the other, it’s one person speaking without being heard by the intended recipient. But you’re clearly free to have a different opinion about it than I do.

        What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying”? After all, it’s his blog, and his rule, and what he means by “bullying” is much more important than what I mean by it.

        Clearly he wasn’t talking about physical intimidation, given that it’s a blog, so how do you interpret what he said?

        “Using your standard for bullying, S. Meyer has just as much right to claim victim status as Anonymous or Jeff”

        Go ahead: quote a list of insults directed at S. Meyer from the same page, and let’s compare them to the list I just gave you. I think you’ll find that he insults others much more than he is insulted, but I’d be happy to be corrected if I’m wrong about that.

        “There used to be a children’s rhyme about this: Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”

        Yes, that’s a childhood saying, but it isn’t actually true that words will never hurt. There’s extensive research on the psychological ill effects of ongoing verbal abuse, both when directed at children and when directed at adults. In the context of online interactions, it’s sometimes called “cyberbullying.”

        1. I don’t think the behavior is the same, because in one case, it’s an interaction between two people, where the intended recipient hears what is said, and in the other, it’s one person speaking without being heard by the intended recipient. — Anon

          You create a distinction without merit between JeffSilberman and S. Meyer, even though both engage in the same objective behavior (repeatedly posting abusive comments about other posters which could inflict emotional distress upon the intended recipient).

          Someone who repeatedly engages in verbal abuse of some other person(s) — deliberately dehumanizing, denigrating, seeking to cause psychological harm, … — is bullying. It’s distinct from one-time insults, civil disagreements, and so forth. — Anon

          Turley is a poster on this blog. JeffSilberman denigrates Turley repeatedly in his comments. These are objective facts. Your impression of whether, or not, Turley reads those comments is merely your subjective opinion. Why Turley does not answer JeffSilberman is simply a matter of conjecture (perhaps he simply refuses to feed trolls). Nor is it necessary for Turley to respond to JeffSilberman’s abusive posts for bullying to occur, according to your criteria, only that such posts be deliberately dehumanizing, denigrating, seeking to cause psychological harm.

          What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying”? After all, it’s his blog, and his rule, and what he means by “bullying” is much more important than what I mean by it. — Anon

          We agree that Turley’s definition of “bullying” in context of his blog matters more than either your or my definitions. Moreover, given his statement — [w]e do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying — and the facts that he has banned neither JeffSilberman nor S. Meyer, nor responded positively to your emails about bullying indicates that he does not agree with your characterization.

          1. Spanky says:

            “Turley is a poster on this blog. JeffSilberman denigrates Turley repeatedly in his comments. These are objective facts. Your impression of whether, or not, Turley reads those comments is merely your subjective opinion. Why Turley does not answer JeffSilberman is simply a matter of conjecture (perhaps he simply refuses to feed trolls). Nor is it necessary for Turley to respond to JeffSilberman’s abusive posts for bullying to occur, according to your criteria, only that such posts be deliberately dehumanizing, denigrating, seeking to cause psychological harm.”

            First, you flatter me. I love seeing my name in print! Criticism is better than being ignored.

            Second, I readily confess to denigrating Turley for his hypocrisies. In this I am in good company with Trump who denigrates the mainstream media, Leftists and anyone who is disloyal to him. So a Trumpist such as yourself Spanky should be the last person to object to the act of denigrating.

            Third, I praise Turley as much as I criticize him. I alone have credited him for not being a lying Trumpist; I can think of no higher compliment than that.

            1. So a Trumpist such as yourself… — JeffSilberman

              LOL, so now I’m a “Trumpist”. Your partisan comment bears no weight.

              1. Spanky says:

                “LOL, so now I’m a “Trumpist”. Your partisan comment bears no weight.”

                I don’t blame you for denying you are a Trumpist. Were I one, I would not admit it publicly. It’s embarrassing to be sure.

                But so long as you believe that the election was stolen on account of massive fraud, you are one- like it or not.

                1. I’m denying nothing, nor have I anything to deny. You only embarrass yourself by trying to paint everyone with whom you disagree as opposition partisans.

                  My opinion about the 2020 election is simple — we do not know who won the election and, absent a non-partisan audit, never will.

                  Your opinion is simply that, Jeff, your opinion. But, given your over-zealous partisanship, it counts for little.

                  A world where you and only people who think like you are good is also a world where you are surrounded by enemies bent on your destruction, who must be fought. It is much more psychologically appropriate to assume that you are the enemy — that it is your weakness and insufficiencies that are damaging the world — than to assume saintlike goodness on the part of you and your party and pursue an enemy you are inclined to see everywhere. — Dr. Jordan B. Peterson

                  1. Sparky says:

                    “My opinion about the 2020 election is simple — we do not know who won the election and, absent a non-partisan audit, never will.”

                    TRUMPIST.

                    1. “TRUMPIST.”

                      Spanky, listening to Jeff using his broad brush, don’t you get the feeling that as a group, we need to respond more vigorously, not necessarily imitating me but by acting a lot more strongly than we do.

                      When that Antifa or BLM guy tries to highjack my space, I’m not going to go peacefully. I’ve already seen how that works out.

                    2. S. Meyer,

                      I have no objections to vigorous pushback, nor do I consider your (or Silberman) trading insults with other posters to necessarily be abusive. Anon’s characterization of “bullying” on this blog lacks merit, in my opinion, and is perhaps being used in an attempt to have you banned from the forum. I do not know if that is an accurate assessment, but it appears possible, even likely, considering the totality of the circumstances.

                      Interestingly, from a political perspective, I’m an independent and do not come here to either promote or defend Trump — I’m neither a fan, nor a detractor, just someone attempting to broaden my understanding of Constitutional law and the political circumstances we find ourselves in. But the constant partisan attacks which, as you note, are from the left and often grounded in lies and deceptions emanating from anonymous sources within U.S. intelligence agencies beggars belief.

                      So, yes, I must agree that it is imperative we push back, and hard, against the Democratic political agenda. What they demonize in the personification of Trump is actually our populist discontent over Washington’s imperial “forever” wars and Wall Street’s “free trade”, which hollowed out the economy and threaten our Constitutional rights and liberty.

                      Heaven help us if this moves from the political arena and into the streets as Antifa and BLM are attempting. They may get away with rioting, arson, looting in blue cities, but out in red counties and states they will receive a warm reception.

                      Getting rid of Trump is the easy part, cleansing the movement he commands is going to be something else. — ABC News Political Director Rick Klein, in a tweet he later deleted

                    3. Spanky says:

                      “What they demonize in the personification of Trump is actually our populist discontent over Washington’s imperial “forever” wars and Wall Street’s “free trade”, which hollowed out the economy and threaten our Constitutional rights and liberty.”

                      Trump is a chronic and habitual liar. That people refuse to concede that fact is the reason this country will never be reunited until they do. This country cannot be sustained when the Republican Party is defending a conman. After Trumpism has been stamped out like McCarthyism was, this country can return to a semblance of normalcy. There is no other way.

                    4. Thank you, Spanky. I respect your opinions, and I think you were on target with your assessment of Anonymous’ motives.

                      I chose the party I belong to based on convenience and the primaries. Early in life, I was a registered Democrat, later a Republican and now an independent. Until the Obama administration, after he proved what I thought he would be, I stopped voting for Democrats, even people I liked and at low levels of government. For some reason, once in power, they line up in a straight line behind their leaders. Too authoritarian for me. Too much lying and deceit. Too fascist. I later refused to support the Republican Party and dealt directly with the candidates that were not Democrats.

                      The Democrats have become more autocratic, so much so that I have difficulty differentiating them from fascists. The Republicans have become somewhat more classical liberal, but for the most part, most of them act like the Democrat-lite of today. I am a classical liberal, libertarian, but I place my faith in a strict reading of the Constitution, which anchors the nation. I look towards the middle class as I believe they are the ones that should have power over the elite who may or may not lead the country.

                      Today, the middle class is dwindling and becoming more entitlement-minded. The entitlement mentality is one of authoritarian because that is one of the methods authoritarian governments use to lead. The leaders have trapped the people because each person reacts to the threat of a denial of an entitlement.

                      I support Trump for one reason only. His policies, for the most part, have worked and have led to an increase in liberty. Those who oppose him haven’t provided an approach that increases freedom. What they are doing is selling their liberty for security that is false. One day the bill will have to be paid, and both security and liberty will face disaster.

                    5. Try listening to yourself Jeff…

                      You seem to believe that you and your ideological compatriots have a lock on truth and virtue. That anyone who disagrees is evil and must be purged. Trump isn’t your problem. We are.

                      You are welcome to sally forth from your blue enclaves and try stamping us out…

                    6. Spunky says:

                      “You seem to believe that you and your ideological compatriots have a lock on truth and virtue. That anyone who disagrees is evil and must be purged. Trump isn’t your problem. We are.”

                      I don’t have a lock on truth, but I can spot a liar when I see one. You are not evil. I don’t believe in evil. Trumpist liars are a problem for this nation. You will have to stop lying about election integrity.

                  2. a proper audit is highly unlikely to ever provide the answer to the question who won the 2020 election.

                    The AZ audit was excellent. It did not change the ballot count significantly.
                    But it radically altered our understanding of the likelyhood the ballots were all legitimate.

                    One of the huge problems with mailin elections is that they are “partially” secret ballot elections.

                    Voting secrecy MUST be from end to end. Voting secrecy is one of the most important antifraud measures.

                    But partial secrecy actually does the opposite. Mailin voting enables myriads of means of fraud – even large scale fraud.
                    But combined with partial secrecy makes that fraud uncorrectable.

                    A proper audit will not likely produce results different from AZ.

                    We will see myriads of errors, and evidence of fraud. We will be aware that the results are just not trustworthy.
                    But we will not be able to determine what the correct vote would have been.

                    That is not possible to reach.

                    Even if we found 45,000 more trump votes flipping the outcome -there would be little reason to beleive that was right either.

                    The scale of the error in the 2020 election is very large. In AZ the smallest possible error – if all problems overlapped 100% is abotu 275,000 votes. The largest possible error – is close to a million votes.

                    Only a bit more than 2M votes were audited – and the error is potentially near 50%.

                    In all probability there is alot of overlap, and the actual total error is close to 15%.
                    That is about 20 times what is necesccary to flip the election.

                    But partial election secrecy means even if we know exactly how much draud there is and who committed that fraud and how,
                    we can not know the actual outcome.

                    1. “But partial election secrecy means even if we know exactly how much draud there is and who committed that fraud and how, we can not know the actual outcome.”

                      Who’s on first?
                      What’s on second?
                      I don’t know’s on third.

                  3. “My opinion about the 2020 election is simple — we do not know who won the election and, absent a non-partisan audit, never will. ”

                    Do you have the same opinion about prior elections, none of which had national non-partisan audits? If not, why do you believe that we know who won earlier elections but don’t know who won in 2020?

                  4. Spanky, I’ll remind you that when you asked me “Could you please provide some examples of bullies and their victims on this blog? Those examples would necessarily, of course, include multiple posts between each bully and victim since you assert these are repeated abuses rather than one-time insults, disagreements and so forth,” I acted in good faith and quoted many examples from S. Meyer directed at anonymous commenters, plus a couple directed at JeffSilberman.

                    You subsequently claimed “S. Meyer has just as much right to claim victim status as Anonymous or Jeff,” and I responded: “Go ahead: quote a list of insults directed at S. Meyer from the same page [jonathanturley.org/2021/10/29/can-we-try-to-kill-this-the-mcauliffe-campaign-responds-to-turley-column-with-bizarre-question/comment-page-2/#comments], and let’s compare them to the list I just gave you. I think you’ll find that he insults others much more than he is insulted, but I’d be happy to be corrected if I’m wrong about that.”

                    But you did not respond to that request. Now you say “nor do I consider your [S. Meyer] (or Silberman) trading insults with other posters to necessarily be abusive”

                    I will again ask you to act as a good faith discussant and do what you earlier asked of me: “Could you please provide some examples” of me “trading insults with” S. Meyer? (And I’m asking about me rather than Jeff because most of the insults I quoted from S. Meyer in response to your request were not directed at Jeff. They were directed primarily at me, and a couple at other anonymous commenters.)

                    I did what you’d requested because I was aiming for a good faith discussion, and among other things, I believe that good faith discussion involves providing evidence when requested, or admitting that one can’t provide evidence (and if that means that the claim is false, also admitting the error). I am asking you to do the same.

                    “Anon’s characterization of “bullying” on this blog lacks merit, in my opinion…”

                    Which is fine. I have no problem with people having a different opinion than me. But I have twice asked you “What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote ‘We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying’?,” and so far, you’ve ignored the question instead of presenting a characterization of “bullying” on this blog that you believe *does* have merit. It’s entirely possible that you can convince me to change my mind about what “bullying” on this blog means. I definitely change my mind at times in response to evidence and good arguments.

                    As I said in my 8:28pm comment last night: “It’s striking that you criticize my description of “bullying” (which is fine, I don’t object to civil criticism), but you didn’t answer the question “What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying”?” You asked me “What constitutes bullying absent any threat of physical harm?,” and I responded in good faith. Now I’m asking you in good faith to please answer your own question.”

                    Are you going to respond to that good faith request, as I did when you made a similar request of me?
                    Or are you instead someone who makes requests, but will not do what you ask of others?

                    As for the end of that sentence, “… and is perhaps being used in an attempt to have you [S. Meyer] banned from the forum,” my response is two-fold.
                    a) IF I were going to do that, I would not do it here. Turley explicitly says in his Civility Rule “transgressions should be raised with me by email and not used as an excuse to trash talk or retaliate.”
                    b) If you return to my initial comment (https://jonathanturley.org/2021/10/29/can-we-try-to-kill-this-the-mcauliffe-campaign-responds-to-turley-column-with-bizarre-question/comment-page-2/#comment-2133340) in which I quoted Turley’s statement “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying,” what I said was: “I wish that the moderation were consistent with the Civility Rule, either by deleting the many personal attacks or by updating the Rule.”

                    I’m not trying to have S. Meyer banned. I am trying to understand what Turley means by “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying” and to encourage moderation that is consistent with that rule. For example, if it were clear to people that personal attacks and bullying weren’t tolerated, perhaps via initial warnings drawing people’s attention to the rule, I think it would benefit the blog comments, which I consider a cess-pool of personal attacks (and I consider S. Meyer a key contributor, as should be clear from the many examples I quoted from him). On the other hand, if Turley means something extremely narrow when he says “personal attacks or bullying,” it would help to update the Civility Rule to clearly communicate what he really means. After all, that’s a key task for writers: to communicate their meaning clearly enough that readers understand what the author means.

                    1. The lying and the deceitfulness of a trickster constitute an attack on every intelligent person. That is you, Anonymous. Saying your actions are similar to one dictator or another is not an insult. It is a fact and is undeniable.

                      What you have written above is repetition on top of the repetition. It is also an attempt to badger another. That behavior is outrageous.

                      Turley is a grown-up, and he doesn’t have to deal with your silly type of childless on his blog that he provides to you for free.

                  5. Spanky,

                    Re: “the constant partisan attacks which, as you [S. Meyer] note, are from the left and often grounded in lies and deceptions emanating from anonymous sources within U.S. intelligence agencies beggars belief,” what “deceptions emanating from anonymous sources within U.S. intelligence agencies” are you referring to?

                    There are constant partisan attacks from both sides. Some people on both sides lie, and others on both sides do not. I condemn dishonesty on both sides and invite you to join me in doing so.

                    “What they [Democrats] demonize in the personification of Trump is actually our populist discontent over Washington’s imperial “forever” wars and Wall Street’s “free trade”, which hollowed out the economy and threaten our Constitutional rights and liberty.”

                    No, I don’t condemn Trump for either of those things. I protested against the wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan when they started, and I’ve written my members of Congress about the need to end the AUMF. Congress needs to retake the control it gave to the Executive re: authorizing long-term military action. Those wars cost trillions, cost American and foreign lives, and didn’t make us safer. That money actually could have benefited us via a combination of being well spent at home, leaving money in people’s pockets, and truly helping those in need abroad.

                    I demonize Trump because I consider him a danger to the country. He is a pathological liar (all politicians seem to lie at times, but the degree of lying from Trump is on a different scale: https://projects.thestar.com/donald-trump-fact-check/). He refused to put his businesses in a blind trust and repeatedly engaged in behavior that put public funds in his private pocket through his businesses (e.g., by visiting his businesses on average every 3 days and charging Secret Service above cost for rooms, golf cart rentals, by having Pence and others stay at Trump properties when abroad, etc. — there’s good reporting on this from David Fahrenthold), he encouraged foreign governments to put money in his pockets through his businesses. He engaged in obstruction of justice as outlined in Vol. 2 of the Mueller Report. He engaged in the behavior that he was impeached for. He encouraged his supporters to laud illegal actions (e.g., “Lock her up” without trial). It’s a long list.

                    Of all of these things, I believe that his attempted self-coup is the most dangerous.

                    He attempted to get Pence to act unconstitutionally and throw the election to Trump, extending Trump’s time in office beyond what Trump was legally elected to. (I’d be happy to quote some of what Trump said publicly about this if you want, just ask.)

                    He spent months lying to his supporters claiming that the election had been stolen and then invited his supporters to a rally in DC based on that Big Lie, choosing the date, time, and location of his Jan. 6 rally to coincide with Congress certifying the Electoral College vote. Trump and his allies repeatedly announced the date to his supporters ahead of time and asked them to show up to the rally. At the rally, Trump and his invited speakers riled the attendees up, and then he encouraged them to go to the Capitol in the midst of the certification and lied to them that he’d go with them. The insurrectionists broke into the Capitol, fought with law enforcement and injured many officers, forced the Secret Service to take Pence away from the Senate to a secure location and forced all members of Congress to stay away from the floor of the House and Senate. They succeeded in delaying the certification of the EC vote by Congress. As someone else said, “far-right groups planned to breach the Capitol during this planned protest. The consequences of that are foreseeable, but it’s somehow not an attempt to overthrow the government [sarc] because they didn’t have a clear plan for what came next. It was a putsch! This is what a putsch IS! Conspirators rally a mob in an attempt to overthrow a government! The mob itself is not, like, part of the advance planning.”

                    Trump tried to stay in power despite having lost the election. Just because he failed doesn’t mean he isn’t a danger. If bank robbers try and fail to rob a bank, they still broke the law. Trump continues to spread the Big Lie and the GOP continues to defer to him. He is still a danger to our democracy.

                    1. Anonymous says:

                      “Trump tried to stay in power despite having lost the election. Just because he failed doesn’t mean he isn’t a danger. If bank robbers try and fail to rob a bank, they still broke the law. Trump continues to spread the Big Lie and the GOP continues to defer to him. He is still a danger to our democracy.”

                      Well said.

                  6. Spanky,

                    In response to your comment that “My opinion about the 2020 election is simple — we do not know who won the election and, absent a non-partisan audit, never will,” I asked you “Do you have the same opinion about prior elections, none of which had national non-partisan audits? If not, why do you believe that we know who won earlier elections but don’t know who won in 2020?,” and you answered “2000.”

                    Why are the 2000 and 2020 elections the only elections that you believe need non-partisan audits to determine who won?

                    Why do you believe that we know who won all of the other elections, none of which had national non-partisan audits?

                    1. You are acting silly. The truth is we should have more audits, not less. Democrats call for all sorts of things whenever there is a loss. Lying and deceitfulness get you nowhere.

                2. Then at last polling 56% of americans are trumpists.

                  I did not vote for Trump in 2016, or 2020.
                  I beleive the election was conducted lawlessly and that alone means the results are meaningless.

                  Even if Republicans found 45000 fraudulent votes in 3 states that they need to flip the count.

                  That would not actually establish the results of the 2020 election.

                  The scale of the lawlessness, combined with partial secret ballots means that the actual correct outcome can never been known.

                  That is extremely bad. That undermines the legitimacy of government.

                3. So long as you are unwilling to face the fact that the election was conducted lawlessly and corrupt – you are a blind shill for the left.

                  The majority of people now beleive it was likely the election was stolen.

                  Contra Spanky -audits can not establish who won the election.
                  The audits reveal the probability of fraud – and the AZ audit found that the probability of large scale fraud was high.

                  No matter what an audit finds – there are few forms of fraud that an audit can trace back to the specific fraudulent ballot.

          2. “both engage in the same objective behavior ”

            Spanky, I think you meant ‘objectionable’ behavior. I agree, but there are reasons for objectionable conduct. For instance, killing another is repugnant, but we send soldiers on the field to do that all the time.

            What do we have on the blog? People who have objectionable behavior such as continuous personal attacks against Turley, Trump, Mark Levin, Fox, etc. We have those who paint with a broad brush trying to bully anyone who might support Trump. These same people believe in cancel culture and are pushing racism that is objectionable as well. Then we have those who lie and deceive or repeat the same claim after it has been disproven multiple times.

            Some believe we should act like dignified Republicans who want to make sure they look good instead of leaders that fight for what is right. We are too passive. That passivity permitted the left to run roughshod over the right when most of the population is right of center.

            I won’t apologize for being a bit objectionable to those people who deserve what they get and should be getting more.

            P.S. I have no problem with anything you said. I think one should not be silent when the Nazis and Stalinists are trying to do a repeat performance.

          3. “You create a distinction without merit between JeffSilberman and S. Meyer, even though both engage in the same objective behavior (repeatedly posting abusive comments about other posters which could inflict emotional distress upon the intended recipient). ”

            I’m open to being convinced that JeffSilberman does that. Can you name someone who posts comments here and that Jeff has repeatedly repeatedly abused, and give some examples of what he said? (Since you asked me for examples, you should be willing to provide them too.)

            I’m aware of Jeff repeatedly posting criticisms of Prof. Turley. But as far as I can tell, Turley seldom if ever reads the comments. I’ve certainly never seen him respond to any, and he doesn’t seem to correct errors that are noted in comments, whereas he’ll sometimes correct errors that are emailed to him (he regularly corrects typos, but unfortunately he is not as willing to correct factual errors).

            “Turley is a poster on this blog.”

            Not in the comments, no, which is what we’re discussing.

            “the facts that he has banned neither JeffSilberman nor S. Meyer, nor responded positively to your emails about bullying indicates that he does not agree with your characterization.”

            That’s possible. It’s also possible that he leaves it entirely up to Darren, and Darren is the one who disagrees with my characterization. There is no way for either of us to know unless one of them says.

            It’s striking that you criticize my description of “bullying” (which is fine, I don’t object to civil criticism), but you didn’t answer the question “What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying”?”

            You asked me “What constitutes bullying absent any threat of physical harm?,” and I responded in good faith. Now I’m asking you in good faith to please answer your own question.

            1. Anonymous says:

              “I’m open to being convinced that JeffSilberman does that. Can you name someone who posts comments here and that Jeff has repeatedly repeatedly abused, and give some examples of what he said? (Since you asked me for examples, you should be willing to provide them too.)”

              I’m firing you as my public defender!

              I am civil with civil people. Paul (who is no longer actively participating on this blog) could have been a character witness for me. Also, I call on Prairie Rose to testify that I’m not a bully, both of whom are on opposite sides of the political spectrum from me.

              As I have said repeatedly, Turley is not a Trumpist. Accordingly, I am civil with him despite my harsh criticism. He would be the first to concede that he is not above reproach. Indeed, he himself exposes the hypocrisy of the mainstream media in ignoring newsworthy stories like Hunter Biden and rubs their noses in it by mocking their silence with the sound of “crickets.” He would not characterize his own ridiculing of the media as “bullying.”

              I make no apology for exposing Turley’s hypocrisies. His hypocrisy is no less shameful than the media’s ignoring the Hunter Biden scandal. Moreover, I fault him for working for Fox News which is a contemptible news operation. I accuse him of being a sell-out, for he NEVER (prove me wrong) condemns faults with Fox’s journalism which he relishes pointing out at its cable competitors on the Left but NEVER on the Far Right networks (again prove me wrong).

              On the other hand, no one need be civil with those who are uncivil. Lying is uncivilized. Trumpists are liars. Therefore, I will not be civil with Trumpists. Period.

              1. “Lying is uncivilized.”

                Interesting, JS is calling ATS uncivilized. Do you think he is a barbarian?

      2. Spanky, I don’t think the word bullying is a helpful word in blog comments. I believe Anonymous uses it because he is used to people coming to his defense, whether corrupt politicians, bureaucrats or the media. When he has to stand on his own, he falters.

        As mentioned earlier, the definition of bullying from Merriam Webster is “abuse and mistreatment of someone vulnerable by someone stronger, more powerful.”

        The word, stronger, is interesting because, on a blog, one deals with words, not physical characteristics. Physical characteristics have little meaning in the blogging world. The closest one could come to strength is intellect.

        As has already been mentioned, abuse and mistreatment arise, but who is the abuser? I claim the abuser to be Anonymous, and those he accuses of being bullies are intellectually stronger.

        So, what is the solution? The answer is clear. A blog should be a clean playing field open to all for all opinions without deception and lies.

        1. “I don’t think the word bullying is a helpful word in blog comments. I believe Anonymous uses it because he is used to people coming to his defense, whether corrupt politicians, bureaucrats or the media. ”

          Your belief is mistaken. I used the word “bullying” because Turley used it in the Civility Rule when he said “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying,” as should be obvious from my having quoted Turley’s own use and then said to Darren “You regularly choose to allow personal attacks and bullying.”

          I’ll ask you the same questions I asked Spanky:
          What do YOU think Turley meant when he wrote “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying”? How do you interpret what he said?

          “I claim the abuser to be Anonymous”

          Then you should substantiate that claim by quoting what you believe to be abuse by anonymous commenters.

          Here, AGAIN, are examples of you repeatedly insulting other commenters, all from a single page of your comments (jonathanturley.org/2021/10/29/can-we-try-to-kill-this-the-mcauliffe-campaign-responds-to-turley-column-with-bizarre-question/comment-page-2):

          •  “Here anonymous the Stupid is up to his old tricks. … Anonymous the Stupid throws links at people he hasn’t even read. … As I have said repeatedly, Anonymous the Stupid can use quotes and links, but he has NO CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS. That is why I have labeled him Anonymous the Stupid, which is frequently shortened to ATS. When he plays this game, I think ATS should be marked for who he is so that everyone can recognize what the sequence of posts is all about.” [you repeat this again in another comment]
          •  “you are Anonymous the Stupid, too Stupid to read or understand what he links to or quotes. … Of course, I use the word Stupid a lot. That is what you are, STUPID. That is how you got your name, Anonymous the Stupid. No one would consider what you do smart. You prey on those that do not know what is happening around them and do not care. You are an animal of prey that kills his own future. Even most in the animal kingdom understand better. You don’t, yet you want to be known by another name than Stupid. … You have NO CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS, no matter how many links or quotes you provide.”
          •  “When you lie and deceive, you deserve every insult you get.”
          •  “Then there are the others, whether Jewish or not, who act like Nazis and talk like Stalinists. You belong to that latter group. No, I don’t get along with that group because they place their ideology ahead of the lives of others. They are mean, nasty and hateful people.”
          •  “That undresses ATS, stuffs him, and makes him ready for the table, November 25.”
          •  “ATS has self lobotomized himself permitting only filtered material to reach his cerebral cortex.”
          •  “you will say anything to trick people into believing your lies and factual distortions.”
          •  “You know nothing, and you can’t seem to extract yourself from your lies and deceit.”
          •  “You deal with rhetoric, not evidence. That is why you are known as Anonymous the Stupid.”
          •  “The answers to this according to Anonymous the Stupid are in the video where the architect is testifying. Boy, do you lack intelligence. … You lie and deceive. You provide links that you haven’t even seen and some of them prove you to be stupid. The questions you are being asked prove that as well. You are not credible.”
          •  “You act like a Nazi and talk like a Stalinist.”
          •  “That you are a child looking for a grown-up to fight his battles is laughable.”

          Now your turn: present quoted evidence for “I claim the abuser to be Anonymous.”

          1. Anonymous, you sound like an injured dog yelping, but those in charge will not come to your rescue. You will have to sort this out yourself.

            You say: “I used the word “bullying” because Turley used it.” Is that so, even when you are unsure of what Turley meant in the following statements and then asked me what I thought it meant. I already told you. I think bullying is not a good word for a blog of this nature though I think I might understand Turley’s meaning, which, If I were correct, would be pretty different from what you have assumed. In any event, I told you the definition of the word and related it to the Internet, where the only true force is intellect. If you feel bullied, then you are admitting to an inferior intellect. I agree.

            You have provided some quotes that are primarily responding to your continuous lying and deceit. One of the quotes: “You act like a Nazi and talk like a Stalinist.” is accurate. That is how you sound. Think of the quote attributed to Joseph Goebbels: “If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it, and you will even come to believe it yourself.” That quote is right on point where you and your lies are concerned.

            You don’t like your name, Anonymous the Stupid, which accurately describes your behavior. If you don’t like it, change. Don’t be Stupid. Provide your own name so others can separate your comments from the pack.

            I had never heard a grown man cry so much and stand there waiting for someone else to do something for him, especially when I provided two simple ways to help you out of your mess. Two more ways would be for you to stop lying and being a nasty trickster.

            1. “I think bullying is not a good word for a blog of this nature”

              OK. But it’s Turley’s blog, and he chose to use the word “bullying” when he said “We do not tolerate personal attacks or bullying,” so odds are that *he* thinks it’s a good word to communicate what he wants to say. We are left to conjecture what he means by it.

              “I think I might understand Turley’s meaning, which, If I were correct, would be pretty different from what you have assumed”

              So say what you believe his meaning to be.

              “If you feel bullied, then you are admitting to an inferior intellect.”

              I believe you to be engaged in bullying, even though you are unsuccessful. My intellect isn’t among my weaknesses.

              “I had never heard a grown man cry so much …”

              That’s odd, since I’m not crying.

              You asserted “I claim the abuser to be Anonymous,” but you are unwilling (and I suspect unable) to substantiate it with quoted evidence.

              1. “so odds are that *he* thinks it’s a good word to communicate what he wants to say.”

                Perhaps in your zeal to protect yourself from logic and truth, you interpreted his word bullying to mean something other than he meant. If I am correct, and I think I am, the bullying he referenced doesn’t include those not censored for bullying because, in his mind, they weren’t.

                You are utilizing the word bullying in the context of a stronger person bullying a weaker one. One cannot transfer the concept of physical strength to a blog post. A better word for strength would be intellect. If one has a higher intellect than another, the use of that intellect is not bullying.

                “I believe you to be engaged in bullying, even though you are unsuccessful. My intellect isn’t among my weaknesses.”

                Then in your context of the word, you aren’t being bullied.

                “That’s odd, since I’m not crying.”

                Your words and complaints tell a different story.

                You have control over your fate. Don’t act so dependent. The entitlement you seek from others is something that needs to be earned. Earn it.

    3. Anonymous, let’s analyze a few comments I made that you think are awful. I took the first three because they were most representative and were repeated in your comments.

      “Anonymous the Stupid throws links at people he hasn’t even read. ”

      That is true and has been proven true multiple times. You don’t defend your actions because you know that to be the case most of the time.

      “Anonymous the Stupid can use quotes and links, but he has NO CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS.”

      This quote has also been proven, but I note that you have been more careful lately, so instead of being angry, you should be thanking me for making you a better debater.

      “I think ATS should be marked for who he is so that everyone can recognize what the sequence of posts is all about.”

      This statement is true as well. When one catches you in a lie, you blame it on another anonymous. That is why the responder needs to label. A label prevents you from shifting the blame to a third party. I note that you finally recognize the problem and have adopted an identifiable icon. Again it would be best if you thanked me for helping you improve.

      I am so happy you mentioned these things. It shows I was successful. Your links relate better to the discussion and your arguments. You are more careful with what you say and have even adopted an icon that prevents confusion and shifting blame.

      I think those three things demonstrate tremendous success.

  2. Anonymous writes: “John Say; did you really try to deflect this ham handedly???”

    Anonymous, John wasn’t deflecting. He was questioning your evidence. AOC is an authority? Are you kidding? She was caught lying.

    1. Allan, you are demonstrating once again that you cannot be bothered to understand a conversation.

      You refer to “AOC” as “she,” as if it refers to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, when I have stated more than once that in my comments on this column, “AOC” refers to the “Architect of the Capitol” — both the AOC as an federal agency (homepage: https://www.aoc.gov/) and the AOC as the head of that agency, a position currently held by a Brett Blanton, who was nominated by Trump and is “he,” not “she.”

      As I noted earlier, “Serving Congress and the Supreme Court, the Architect of the Capitol (AOC) is the builder and steward of the landmark buildings and grounds of Capitol Hill. Our staff preserves and maintains the historic buildings, monuments, art and inspirational gardens on the Capitol campus,” so yes, their staff are authorities on things like the damage done to the Capitol complex on 1/6 (because they had to assess it and arrange for repairs, conservation work, etc.) and the fact that a slave named Philip Reid was among those who worked on the Statue of Freedom that sits on the Capitol dome.

      1. Anonymous, it is your fault. You play games with words all the time, so don’t expect ordinary people to try and figure out what you are saying. I won’t call it a lie that you may have mentioned what the initials AOC referred to, but it is pretty evident that I thought you referred to AOC who is a liar and who one cannot trust. I can’t tell when you have changed from deception to truth.

        Let’s hear exactly what you want us to know that the AOC said. Let’s clarify it. Did he provide video proof? Did he show evidence that the left was not involved? Did he show before and after pictures?

        What did he show? Jan 6 resulted in some damage, without question. Even the bullet from the cop that killed Babbitt caused some damage. Was that damage art as well? What distinguishes art from furnishings?

        You have to come clean. You know that the AOC wasn’t in the building at the time. That means he can only assess the damage, not who did it. To understand what happened at the time, he would need what? The videos.

        Come clean; without the videos, do you expect the AOC to know who did what?

        Your links, videos and big names are meaningless when there is video evidence that can tell us precisely what happened without all the political posturing that selectively chooses what to show the public. Are you going to deny that those in charge are only showing what benefits them? Come clean.

        If you consider yourself intelligent, you know the video released was selective and biased.

        Come clean, Anonymous; we are all waiting.

        1. “Let’s hear exactly what you want us to know that the AOC said.”

          Read the comments I already posted about it, which can easily be found with a text search on “AOC.” I already linked to Blanton’s testimony and also quoted relevant text from his prepared opening statement.

          If you want to know who did damage to the Capitol complex on Jan. 6, all you have to do is search on “Destruction of Government Property” here: https://www.justice.gov/usao-dc/capitol-breach-cases
          You can then look at the evidence for that charge for each person who was charged with it.

          1. What you are telling us Anonymous, is that you know nothing, otherwise you would produce the data and throw it in our faces. You read newspapers and ideas from the left, are big on links to the AOC, but without critical thinking skills you cannot integrate what you read into reality.

            Come clean, Anonymous, even you have to know that those withheld video tapes completely change the picture the left has produced with their selective tapes and hearings. …And those selected tapes didn’t prove very much. The videos of visitors were far more revealing.

            Come clean Anonymous or do you already know the videos were withheld to prove something that doesn’t exist? If you don’t recognize that then I am truly sorry for your lack of intellectual development.

Leave a Reply

Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks
%d bloggers like this: