Another Example of Right Wing bloggers being led down the path?

Remember when all of those Iranian Democracy logos popped up on the Instahackolyte sites? There was some nebulous organization called “The Blog Iran! Campaign” that seems to have gone dry some time in June of last year. (Mission Accomplished?)

I wonder if it was in any way connected with (accused war profiteer and defense contracting fraudster) Mitchell Wade and MZM industries, the fine folks who bought Duke Cunningham.

Wade — who’s facing several years in the big house for bribery, fraud, tax evasion and more — registered the “Iranian Democratization Foundation” in April 2004. Two months later, the White House signed the first of three contracts with Wade’s company MZM for “intelligence services.” In all, Wade’s contracts with the Executive Office of the President were worth $250,000. His foundation has since been dissolved.

We’ve called the White House three times asking for more information about the contracts, but they have yet to call us back. Meanwhile, a cursory check has turned up no other filings for Wade’s nonprofit: no employer ID number, 990 filing, or anything else. Nexis shows no mention of the group in any news coverage.

Pouring money down a rathole for fun and profit? I mean, you’d have to have not been paying attention to not notice the publicity arc of the “Iran Democratization” campaign being alarmingly similar to the “WMD in Iraq” campaign.

Whether MZM was involved in the whole blog campaign or not, I have to ask myself- Do these talking-points-barking right wing blogs EVER get tired of being duped?

Update:

WhoIs registration for the Blog Iran! site:
Cyrus ActivistChat
San Diego
San Diego, CA 43178
US

info@activistchat.com
+1.8586106666

Domain Name: ACTIVISTCHAT.COM

San Diego? Isn’t that where Duke Cunningham is from? Wasn’t there an MZM office in SD? Who’s gonna call that number and ask for Mitchell Wade?

(Another) Update:

Called the number. No Mitchell Wade there.

Troll Smacking for Kicks

My brother has pioneered a fantastic technique for dealing with trolls. It’s called “TRexing.” It’s been adopted as policy at several other blogs. I’ll let him explain:

Here’s what you do.

1. Don’t panic.
2. Don’t respond.
3. Urge your readers not to respond.
4. Go to the ‘Edit Comments’ section of your blog’s control panel.
5. Leave the troll’s screen name up, but completely change the content of their comment.

Example:
(Before)
ALL YOU LIBRELS SUX TEH BIG ONE. YOUR JUST A BUNCH OF COMMIE COCK SUKKERZ!!! WELL SEE HOW U LIKE IT WHEN ALL QUIDA BOMBS YER TOWN! I HOPE YOU ALL DIE.
Signed, A Troll

(After)
Truly, I admire what you are doing here. It is simply my own cowardice and repressed homosexuality that make me a rabid right wing idiot. I know that I am wrong, but my life is so pathetically empty that I don’t know what else to do. Please carry on your good and brave work.
Signed, A Troll

The beauty of this approach is that it completely subverts a troll’s reason for being. Sometimes it takes them a while to catch on. But, once it gets through their thick skulls what’s happening, they run, run, run away. I had one brief but intense infestation of trolls in 2003, but once I instituted this policy, word got around and none of them ever gave me any trouble again.

In the meantime, I have a whole different approach- I believe that trolls should be coached on HOW TO BE BETTER TROLLS.

For example, over at Shakespeare’s Sister, there has been an influx of trolls posting from a range of IP addresses, all signing off as “Dave.”

Dave has some sort of anti-feminist thing going, and apparently the Shakespeare’s Sister blog got targeted by one of these Men’s Rights groups (which is pretty funny in and of itself, but a discussion for a whole ‘nother day) for trolling.

So, y’know, you gotta help these guys out, because they’re really thrashing around trying to be MEN’S MEN, but their whole raison d’etre is to whine about how hard it is to be a man. I mean, that’s a violation of RULE NUMBER ONE for being a masculine American. Button that lip and quit crying about how hard it is to be THE REAL VICTIM HERE. It’s hard to make a very compelling case for Male Supremacy when your lip is trembling.

So, y’know, I have been giving him some tips on tightening up his message:

He said:

There isn’t a thing in this post that holds a bit of water. Nothing that changes the underlying premise behind the pro-abortion mythos. It all amounts to one thing — pro-abortion women wish to negate the responsibilities imposed by nature.
Dave | 03.07.06 – 3:23 pm |

And I said:

Oh, David, David, David…

you’re going to have to polish your technique a little bit if you’re going to be a proper troll. You’re not supposed to call people “Pro-Abortion.” It’s PRO DEATH! And you have to type it in all caps, because we need to feel you back here in the cheap seats, in all your sex-hating, tooth-gnashing glory.

“responsibilities imposed by nature”?

What kind of tree-hugger crap is that? You meant so say “HARLOTS!! PREGNANCY IS GOD’S PUNISHMENT FOR IMMORAL SEX!! YOU TROLLOPS AND YOUR NYLONS AND YOUR LIPSTICKS ARE FOUL TEMPTRESSES! YOU MAKE MY DUNGAREES FIT STRANGELY AND I FEEL THAT YOU ARE OUT OF MY CONTROL! YOU MUST BE PREGNANT, ASHAMED AND HUMBLE BEFORE GOD! AND ME! AS A PENIS-POSSESSING AMERICAN!”

See how much more direct that was? And it really gets the anti-fornicator message across without having to mimsy-wimsy around with appeals to ‘nature.” That way no one gets confused about the difference between harlot-spawn and some, like, spotted owl or something.

More intellectually honest trolls, please….
patrick | Homepage | 03.07.06 – 6:20 pm |

You have to sort of help them along to stay on-message. More:

C’mon, Dave…. I know you can say it.

Say it with me….

SEX WITHOUT BABIES IS LIKE CHURCH WITHOUT SNAKES… God said, I believe it, and that settles it, you harlots!

Don’t waste a bunch of time trying to get up on the world’s tiniest high horse. JUST SAY WHAT YOU CAME HERE TO SAY:

WOMEN ARE NOT ALLOWED TO CONTROL SEX. THAT’S THE MAN’S JOB.

I know you can do it, little guy…
patrick | Homepage | 03.07.06 – 6:37 pm |

It’s been ongoing for a couple of days, and I plan to keep at it until the Dave(s) finally figure get the message hammered down into it’s most concise form: “Fear God, respect my cock.”

If it’s not too hubristic, I would humbly propose that we dub this technique of troll harassment “Yelladoggin’,” in honor of the former moniker of my weblog.

Please forward examples of your own yelladoggin’. I will publish them here.

Some brief observations

1. the time of year is fast approaching when everyone who has become hooked on Girl Scout cookies is forced to go cold turkey. If you had a freezer full of thin mints in mid-April you could have pretty much owned my poor dad some years ago.

2. I remember when I was a kid, David Bowie kinda sorta came out of the closet for a minute, and chubby white FM Radio DJs and their myriad minions all over the country got their knickers in a SERIOUS twist. DAVID BOWIE?? GAY!!??! SAY IT ISN’T SO!!

I mean, what? Didn’t ANY of these people listen to Hunky Dory ferfuck’ssake?

3. OFX are so fucking incredible. Thanks for the heads up, e p o n y m o u s.

4. I’ll let Agent Papa Nueva take #4:

I don’t know why this one pushed me past the tipping point, but if I have to see one more picture of W attempting to look like a working man, I may go running and screaming through the streets. The man’s never worked a day of real work in his life, but he constantly tries to pull this “everyman” garbage. How about we get him to work a physical labor job for just one day . . . see how Mr. Fitness likes it. What about digging ditches in his favored west Texas heat for a full 8 hours* not some 15 minute brush cutting bullshit.

I gotta tell you guys a secret

I hate the word “pimp.” I don’t much care for the word “whore,” either, but for a completely different reason. I’ll get into that later, maybe.

Oh, but “pimp.” “Pimpin’ ain’t easy.” “Pimp my ride.” “I just pimped my weblog,” as I saw someone in the comments at The Heretik say today…

I even understand that Pimpin’ was a major part of the Academy Awards, last night.

First of all, it’s an ugly word. It’s the first syllable of “pimple.” And it is, much like its sonorously similar cousin, filled to bursting with nastiness.

Pimpin’, let’s not forget, is running a stable of prostitutes. A pimp takes a prostitute’s money, pays her in drugs and beats her when she gets uppity about it. We have come to associate material flamboyance as a lifestyle with the word, but let’s not gloss over the word’s origins.

How someone managed Slavery to us as a commodity is beyond me.

Pimping is Slavery, make no mistake.

So, this is why every time I hear someone say “Man, that is SO PIMPIN’!” I think “That is so SLAVEOWNING!”

You can use the word all you want, I just want you to be AWARE of what you’re actually evoking for people who are paying attention.

It creeps me out. I’m just saying.

So, I fixed the place up a bit… whaddya think?

I got tired of wondering who was trying to comment and was getting batted down by the MT blacklist. I know that The Fixer was having trouble, and I always deeply value his input, so I made the change to WordPress. I kinda dig it. Some of the controls are very different from MT, so I am feeling my way through it.

Other reasons for the migration:

  • People were telling me that white text on a black background was hard to read for very long.
  • I was getting kind of bored with the name Yelladog and the same old look.
  • Spam comments were still getting through and legitimate comments weren’t. That’s no good.

    The migration was a snap, thanks to Dreamhost’s One-Click WordPress Installer. So far, so good. I have been doing the blog equivalent of walking through the house flicking lights on and off, so if something was one way ten minutes ago and now isn’t right, just give it a minute. I am sure I broke it or something.

    Let me know what you think!