I spent the month of June with way too much of my brain filled up for way too much time with two men who are for lack of a better term “Twitter Personalities’ of the political stripe — one is @Shoq and the other is @BrooksBayne.
On June 1st, I published the first of a series of articles about @Shoq on The Trenches, a website published by @BrooksBayne. It was a story about @Shoq illegally recording a phone call and I’m proud of the work I did on the story; what I think is cunning, compelling, professional journalism. However, I ended up having to quit working with @BrooksBayne less than a week after starting the story, after he made a remark about violence and the Bretty Kimberlin story that I wanted nothing to do with. A series of other clashes developed with Brooks over the coming weeks and then he went into full meltdown mode in the past few days. I know regret even trying to work with him. Meanwhile, @Shoq stonewalled and his circle of friends published conspiratorial pieces that questioned the underlying truth of the story; a weird move since the story is true and they know it.
But there’s an irony about Shoq and Brooks.
Dealing with the publisher and the subject of the story revealed an interesting truth; they are actually the same person. Not literally, of course. (THAT would be quite a scoop.) I’m sure this will be laughed off by their supporters but for the rest of you, think this through with me…
One way to look at @Shoq and @BrooksBayne is that they are polar opposites. In stratified political world we live in, it’s obvious that Brooks and Shoq have nothing in common. If we were to grab a piece of paper and draw line down the middle with the political left on one side (leftists, liberal, progressives, Democrats) and the political right (conservatives, right wingers, Republican or even the word Brooks throws around constantly ‘Federalists’) on the other, we see a very very clear separation.
Viewed from this perspective, the difference could not be clearer.
However, let’s erase that left / right and draw a new one.
When we do this, something new emerges immediately.
Oh, look at that! Now they are both on the same side of the line!
If this seems like a harsh assessment, I’m sorry but I believe it’s true. Go visit their rancid Twitter timelines for a fuller experience. Both Shoq and Brooks are offensive bullies that attempt to use ideology as cudgel to beat both allies and enemies into line in order to compensate for some deeply seated neurosis. It’s not about policy with them. It’s about a twisted, nasty and immaure sort of testosterone fueled power trip that lets them tie a sense of faux accomplishment to their Twitter-hood. Neither is ‘out there’ in the real world making a difference. They exist online.
They don’t dare admit see any of this, of course. Neither will their intimidated minions.
But I see it and I reject it. It’s way beyond the politics of left and right; it’s just bad. Very very bad.
Liberal website Firedoglake.com sent supporters an email hours after the Supreme Court decision on health reform telling their readers that the ruling sets the stage for a complete takeover of the medical system via single-payer health care. The letter from Brian Sonenstein, who is Firedoglake’s Director of Online Activism and says (emphasis from the original letter, not added) :
Despite the dangers lurking in this bill, this decision has positive implications for progressives as it sets the stage forthe next fight: achieving single-payer health care reform.Vermont is already heading down this path, and hopefully this affirmation of the health care law will embolden other states to follow their lead.
The legislation in Vermont is being seen by many on the left as the next step after Obamacare. According on a laudatory article last year in left-wing Mother Jones:
As Gov. Peter Shumlin took his spot on the granite steps of the Vermont State House, a row of people fanned out behind him wearing bright red t-shirts proclaiming, “Health care is a human right.” The slogan sounded noble, and wildly unrealistic. Until the governor spoke.
“We gather here today to launch the first single-payer health care system in America,” began Shumlin, a Democrat who has been governor barely four months. “To do in Vermont what has taken too long: have a health care system, the best in the world, that treats health care as a right, and not a privilege.”
Moments later, the governor made history, signing a law that sets Vermont on a course to provide health care for all of its 620,000 citizens through a European-style single payer system called Green Mountain Care. Key components include containing costs by setting reimbursement rates for health care providers and streamlining administration into a single, state-managed system. The federal health care reform law would not allow Vermont to enact single payer until 2017; Vermont is asking the administration to grant it a waiver so that it can get there even faster, by 2014.
So the SCOTUS decision to uphold Obama is a victory for Single Payer. But what if the Supreme Court had NOT upheld Obamacare?
Don’t worry, it still would have been a victory for Single Payer.
An article in Huffington Post yesterday called Single-Payer Health Care Favored By House Progressives If Court Strikes Down Obamacare spells it out:
Asked why progressives think a single-payer option could advance this time around, Ellison said if the Supreme Court strikes down some or all of the existing health care law, it shows that the individual mandate at the heart of the law — a concept originally backed by conservatives — was a failed approach.
“We’ve tried it the right-wing way. Let’s try it the right way,” he said.
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said he led the charge for reviving the single-payer health plan during a recent Progressive Caucus meeting.
“We agreed we’re going to come out in favor of Medicare for all, in both instances,” he said, referring to the Supreme Court possibly striking either some or all of the health care law. “One disadvantage of saying, ‘Let’s go for single payer,’ is that by and large the American people have no idea what that means. But the advantage of saying ‘Medicare for all,’ the American people do know what that means. And it’s a very popular proposal.”
The path from Obamacare leads to Single Payer either ways. Head the progressives all win, Tails we all lose.
Over at Patterico, a commenter is asking a VERY relevant question about the SWATings…
If I could interrupt the frivolity to ask a serious question…
It seems to me that the sort of crime that a law-enforcement agency would be most anxious to investigate would be — the crime of falsely sending officers of that agency out on a spurious (and potentially dangerous) murder call, thus depleting resources of that very LEA — and not incidentally, making that LEA look like fools.
Forget Obama; I can’t understand why the localcops aren’t utterly incensed by such depraved manipulation of themselves. How can they not be furious? And fast?
If somebody called me when I was out and told me my house was on fire, and when I raced home I discovered it was a “prank,” my impulse would be to get a couple of friends, find the jackass, and beat the living lulz out of him.
How can police officers just shrug and say, “what do you expect us to do about it?” Why doesn’t their own pride, not to mention the catcalls, force them to make that person Target Number One?
Totally agreed. It’s CRAZY that Law Enforcement doesn’t isn’t picking up on this and stopping it. Start by interviewing the one ‘witness’ to Patterico’s swatting, Ron Brynaert. I’m not accusing Ron of being the SWATer but he’s a witness. Interview him, already.
And I’d apply the same logic to Brett Kimberlin, who Aaron Walker reports
is planning to keep filing legal actions against Walker FOR BLOGGING. Look at what Kimberlin said in a legal filing:
From: Justice Through Music
To: Reginald Bours
Sent: Mon, Jun 25, 2012 12:11 pm
Subject: Re: Your peace order against Aaron Walker in the Circuit Court, Case No. 8444D
Again, I want to be left alone by your client. That is my demand as required by Galloway and the criminal harassment statute. His false narrative that I framed him is defamatory and inciting extremists to threaten me. He is responsible for their conduct. I will not hesitate to seek additional peace orders or criminal harassment charges if he does not leave me alone.
When is Maryland going to say ENOUGH with Kimberlin’s frivolous filing? Again, this indicates a deeply broken justice system. Paging Radley Balko!
The Other McCain points out something significant about the #StopRush / @Shoq illegal recording story that I’ve reported on previously :
How do we know that the story was legit? The proof is in the statement issued this week to The Trenches by attorney Imani Gandy.
Gandy was eager to disavow having been closely involved with the “Stop Rush” leadership, and similarly eager to deny having anything to do with the recorded phone call. Why this eagerness? Because if Shoq was in Florida when he recorded that call, the recording would be illegal under Florida law and, as Gandy is a lawyer, it would be a clear-cut ethics violation for her to be complicit in such a crime.
Yet in the process of making those denials, Gandy ended up confirming the authenticity of both the recording and the e-mails published by The Trenches.
This is some indie confirmation of what I can tell you for sure — the story is legit. I’ve heard the whole call and despite the literally insane post by Matt Osborne called Breitbart Bloggers Help Con Man Harass Citizen Activists that claims the whole thing is a hoax, it’s not. Period. And that statement confirms it.
Which raises only two options for Matt “Shoq” Edelstein — he’s either a blowhard or he’s connected to the Obama campaign and Van Jones. Because he brags about his connections on the call. He says he can reach Obama For America or Van Jones, right away.
Can he? If so, that’s a big story. If not, he’s a huge pompous liar — less of a story, but interesting to note.
Shoq is stonewalling and hoping the story goes away. It’s not.
And my guess?