Just kidding. But the Gormogons do have a very funny post with a picture (possibly) taken outside Wall Street:
Also, there's this:
It's long--8:50--but totally worth it. Particularly for you, CPW.
15 hours ago
Date: Thu, Sep 18, 2008 at 11:10 AM
Subject: The Atlantic's official position re: Identity Theft
Does The Atlantic Monthly endorse identity theft as a legitimate political vetting tool? I'm only curious because a Sr. Editor at your publication recently endorsed this tactic on an official Atlantic blog: http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/09/vetting-palin.html
If this is not the official position of your publication you might want to publish a disclaimer disavowing Mr. Sullivan's recent endorsement of said crime.
[T]oday he endorsed identity theft as a legitimate tool against Palin.
I cannot comprehend how he has not been fired today. The Atlantic Monthly, one of the great publications of the past century+, now endorses identity theft. This is far more shocking that the lunacy and rumor-mongering of the past 3 weeks. Identity theft is a truly insidious crime that destroys peoples lives every single day. Today a Sr. Editor of The Atlantic Monthly, on their own pages, proudly endorsed this tactic. That the Washington Post is not investigating this situation is a complete and utter sham. Howard Kurtz should be ashamed. I plan on calling The Atlantic tomorrow to inquire as to their official position on identity theft and their comments on Sullivan's endorsement of it.
I've read elsewhere around the web the notion that hacking an email account does not qualify as identity theft, but may be covered by various anti-hacking laws.
This is not necessarily true. The method most likely used to gain access to the account almost certainly qualifies as identity theft.
I can think of only a few ways to gain access to a private email account: some sort of brute force password hack, or trick the provider to reset password and/or account info.
Brute force attacks these days are mostly defeated by security protocols in place designed specifically to stop such attacks. It is probably highly unlikely that this was a brute force attack, and if it were Yahoo has a huge problem on their hands regarding their security.
In all likelihood this was either a web-password-reset or some other form of reset that gained access to the account. If a web-reset occurred it is possible that with the plethora of personal Palin information available to the public someone might be able to answer the questions set up before a reset can occur (i.e. where did you attend middle school, what is your dog's name, etc...) If you read a EULA or any agreement, to answer these questions as though you are the account holder is identity theft. It is also possible that someone simply called Yahoo to get this information, again under the guise that they were Sarah Palin or someone authorized on her behalf. This constitutes identity theft.
Nonetheless, whether it violates a hacking law or identity theft laws, it was a crime. And The Atlantic sanctions crimes against Sarah Palin. Until a retraction or disclaimer is provided, this is their official position.
Ross Douthat tells us he is very comfortable with outright lies in politics. In fact, it is so faux to care about truth in politics (but never faux to display outrage at journalists asking factual questions about Palin's stories about her own family). He couldn't get worked up about Clinton's lies either, he tells us. Why? Because the ends always justify the means. If you're going to ban all abortion, you just have to tell a few whoppers and demonize a few opponents along the way:
The point of being in national politics is to win elections and govern the country in accordance with whatever goals led you into the arena in the first place, not to please columnists who disagree with you on ideological grounds but appreciate a finely-tuned sense of political principle.
It's really come to this? Notice the avoidance of what is at stake here: the basic question of truth: empirical, checkable, verifiable truth. How naive to care about that.
As for blog "rumors" about a Down Syndrome pregnancy, all this blog has done is ask for facts and context about a subject that the Palin campaign has put at the center of its message, facts about a baby held up at a convention as a political symbol for the pro-life movement, and cited in Palin's acceptance speech. You do that, you invite questions about it. I make absolutely no apologies for doing my job.
I find the account of her pregnancy and labor provided by Palin to be perplexing, to put it mildly, and I have every right to ask questions about it, especially since we have discovered that this woman lies more compulsively and less intelligently than the Clintons. . . . And in the absence of any information from the Palin campaign, I have aired every possible view trying to explain it. What else am I supposed to do? Pretend these questions don't exist? Pretend her story makes sense to me? I owe my readers my honest opinion. That's not rumor-mongering, it's fulfilling my core commitment to my readers. . . .
All my factual questions of more than two weeks ago, moreover, remain unanswered by the McCain campaign. They are all factual questions demanding simple factual answers that any campaign that wasn't bent on deceit and lies would be more than eager and perfectly able to provide.
Why haven't they? When will they?
I don't know Greenberg (I count this as a blessing) and I can add nothing to what James Bennet told the Post except to say that Greenberg is quite obviously an indecent person who should not be working in magazine journalism. Every so often, journalists become deranged at the sight of certain candidates, and lose their bearings. Why, this has even happened in the case of John McCain once or twice. What I find truly astonishing is the blithe way in which she has tried to hurt this magazine.
Alex Massie is disappointed by my relentless vetting of Palin, specifically the bizarre facts in the public record about her fifth pregnancy. For my part, I stand by my skepticism of everything Sarah Palin says. [emphasis in original] . . .
[M]y working assumption now is that she is a pathological liar--even about things that are objectively checkable.
A pathological liar simply cannot be trusted to tell the truth about herself, even on a subject as routine as a pregnancy and infant son. I can't believe I'm asking these questions either. But in the absence of any answers, what am I supposed to do?
I know this puts me out of the mainstream of acceptable Washington opinion. But let me just remind Alex that doubting the existence of Saddam's WMDs put some people out of the mainstream of acceptable Washington opinion. Would the world be a better place if those people had refused to be silenced or intimidated?
when you agree to run for vice-president of the United States, you surrender any zone of privacy. Al Gore's sometimes wayward son; Dick Cheney's daughter and now granddaughter; Dan Quayle's wife; George H. W. Bush's extensive clan: all these families have been an "open book" to the press. . . .
The Edwards story - showing stunning recklessness in a potential president - legitimized the reporting of the National Enquirer, and made their reporting in this news cycle legit. And the story - subsequently reported and endorsed in the New York Times and every mainstream media source - was less relevant to public life than Palin's. Because by the time the story broke, Edwards was out of the race. Palin is not just in the race, she's ahead - and we have six weeks to go. It is, I'd argue, the duty of the press and the blogosphere to ask any factual and fair questions to which there can be clear and factual answers. . . .
In 2008, in mid-September, we are not even allowed to ask questions about Palin's real and actual life as a mother-as-governor? That notion is as absurd as the Palin candidacy itself, in my judgment.
Of open books, any sincere and legitimate factual question is askable. . . .
It seems to me that if you are on record saying that your life is an open book, and you have a state-run web-page about your infant son, and your own children's travel is paid for by the state, and you presented your infant son at a convention televised across the entire world, and you sent out a press release outing your own daughter's current pregnancy, then it is not despicable, evil, vile or outrageous for the press to ask factual, answerable questions about Sarah Palin's experiences as a pregnant and non-pregnant mother and about her marriage and about her parenting of her children.
Now I begin to understand the intimidation I have been subjected to for simply asking questions. All I can reassure my readers is: I'm now more determined than ever to reveal the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth about this dangerous, vindictive Christianist cipher being foisted on the United States.
[The left] smeared Sarah Palin with a host of - um - imaginative charges like she wore a fat suit to fake a pregnancy that had actually visited itself upon her daughter. Even the chief disseminator of that rumor from his perch at the Atlantic has since bethought himself of that smear, publicly crediting Palin for bringing her fifth child to term on Wednesday (although of course neither admitting error nor apologizing for his role in spreading the rumor).
Say all you want about Sarah Palin's non-existent record on foreign policy, series of public lies, non-existent vetting and absurd, unprecedented shielding from the press. At least we know this for sure: she went through the psychological, emotional and spiritual test of eight months of pregnancy and a painful, difficult, endless labor for a cause she believes in.
Sullivan, referring to "Troopergate," links to an ABC News video and concludes, "Palin clearly lied."
But if you watch the video, you find two things:
(1) Accusations from the fired state official that he believes he was fired because of the brother-in-law; and
(2) Audio recordings that literally include no reference to Palin intending to fire the police commissioner.
It's funny that Sullivan would call this, in effect, a "slam dunk." There's no evidence there! And Sullivan never hesitates to (1) bemoan the Bush administration's reliance on thin evidence in the run-up to the war, or (2) remind us all that "true" conservatives are skeptics.
* A close reading of that semi-endorsement of Palin, however, shows that Sullivan is still peddling the smear that Trig isn't the governor's baby. Look very carefully at Sullivan's wording. He says, "I want to go on record again as saying that the decision to bring up a child with Down Syndrome is one of the most noble, beautiful and admirable decisions any person can make. That Sarah Palin is doing that says a huge amount in favor of her." [emphasis added]
Is it coincidence that Sullivan merely credits Palin with "bringing up" the baby, instead of, you know, "bearing him" or "having him" or "giving birth to him"? I don't think so. It seems pretty clear that even as late as last night, Sullivan was still hinting to readers of The Atlantic that Palin's youngest child isn't actually hers.
Once a respectable journalist, The Atlantic’s self-declared champion of respect for privacy and of civil discourse now obsesses over Miss Palin, airing baseless and abhorrent questions about the motherhood of Trig, Gov. Palin’s infant son, born this year with Down syndrome. One wonders if David Bradley bought The Atlantic — a venerable institution that once published Mark Twain and Martin Luther King — so that he could associate it with the most despicable ravings of the left-wing blogosphere. What price in reputation is Bradley willing to pay for increased unique-visitor numbers from among the fever swamps?
I think the coverage of Sarah Palin to date - by colleagues I used to respect and publications I normally admire - at least partially vindicates this theory about the reception that would greet the kind of GOP I'd like to see.
Brandishing a Down Syndrome child as a campaign statement is daring the press to ask questions about him. And if you are going to hold the baby in front of the cameras, how can you say that the details of his birth cannot even be discussed?