TBogg is claiming I “outed” him. Actually, he outed himself — and clearly wanted to do it. Good on him and more power to him.
Here’s how this came to pass.
In June, an anonymous individual calling himself “Retardo” wrote a post, favorably linked by Glenn Greenwald, calling Jeff Goldstein a “douchebag.” (I’m not linking the post.) He also called Goldstein a “talentless hack,” “cretin,” “jerk,” “weenie,” and “stupid,” and claimed that Jeff has an “adenoidal, wimpy” speaking voice. His post included a photoshop of Goldstein naked, with a towel covering his privates. Another depicted Goldstein as “Count Cockula,” a term that a deranged woman has adopted as she has stalked Goldstein across the Internet.
And this anonymous person called Goldstein a “chickenhawk coward” — from behind his pseudonym.
It’s gotten me a little upset. Jeff Goldstein is out there issuing opinions under his true name every day. For people to be that nasty while hiding behind the veil strikes me as disgusting.
In that frame of mind, I toddled over to the site of one “TBogg” last night. Where I saw, from the poisonous pen of Mr. TBogg, this lovely little screed about Michelle Malkin:
Jesus. Fucking. Christ. In the history of big steaming loads disgorged from the gaping maw of Michelle Malkin what could be more absurd than hearing this professional rage artist complain about racism, the very basis of her crapulent bottom-feeder career? This is the kind of shit that Malkin lives for: manufactured outrage. Because as she has metastasized from failed journalist to disgraced fake historian to her current incarnation as braying white supremacist in brown face.
…she will take anything and try and make a mountain of a molehill because that’s all she’s got. It’s not that she a second rate thinker, it’s just that she can’t think at all so she throws shit against the wall and her readers (and what a braintrust that group is) run with it.
Oh, and there were unflattering frozen images from TV appearances, and then more:
This is what she is.
This is what she does.
This is why you never see her anywhere except on Fox with her fake outrage peers O’Reilly and Hannity. Because she can’t handle being called on her shit without pouting and over-dramatizing like a 14 year-old who just found out the last pink Razr was sold. She’s a professional smear merchant who runs away from conflict to the safety of her commentless blog. And she can say anything and lie about anything because nobody expects anything better out of her which makes her perfect for joining up with all of the other Lieberman supporters.
All from behind his veil of a pseudonym.
And with the background of the Goldstein affair, I got upset.
I learned that Mr. TBogg has chosen to associate the e-mail address on his site with his true name. You simply plug his e-mail address into Google, and up pops a name that is obviously his — his moniker is a combination of his first initial and the first four letters of his last name. If he were actually trying to hide it, he could — but evidently he wasn’t.
I had no plan to actually “out” the guy, but — angry over his trashing of Malkin — I wanted to rattle his chain. So I left some obscure comments on the Malkin post, needling him. It was the kind of hints he would understand but his commenters wouldn’t:
Stop them before they mock people with real names again!
Someone should sign a petition.
Because his name is associated with his e-mail in an online petition. Then I said:
And they should include their e-mail address.
In the petition.
Searchable, as e-mail addresses often are, by Google.
That’s about the sum total of my “outing” of the guy. You can read the whole thread here.
His commenters weren’t getting it, because the hints were very oblique. If TBogg hadn’t come along, that would have been it. But up popped TBogg in the comments, saying:
One of these day Patterico is going to actually string one thought together without going, “Fuck! I should have said…”
I asked him if he really wanted me to string that particular thought together. He responded by posting a quote from me about pseudonyms, in which I reveal my true name. He further antagonized me and finally said:
What Patterico is saying is that he found out my real name and he wants to out me but he wants to have plausible deniability and claim, “Well, it was just out there on the internet.”
Which it is. But he has a shred of conscience that he is currently wrestling with wondering how other bloggers will feel about him afterwards, particularly when he has left a virtual trail of thought regarding anonymity.
TBogg didn’t feel “outed” yet. And I took no further steps to out him. I told him I thought he could be less of an asshole, and asked him if he was proud of his post about Malkin. He said:
As a matter of fact…I am.
You’re really finding it hard to take that big step aren’t you?
He still didn’t feel outed, and I still took no further steps. He was clearly goading me to out him, but I had no intent of doing it and said so:
I’m not outing you, tbogg.
You seem to think there’s a big step to take.
I’m not taking it.
But I think you’re a gutless coward for hiding behind your little pseudonym.
Not at all.
In fact, I’m not outing you at all. I said quite clearly that I’m not.
But it sounds like you have done it yourself — or you want to. Maybe you’ll be a more responsible commenter as a result.
I doubt it. But it would be nice.
Review the chronology:
“You’re really finding it hard to take that big step aren’t you?”
I.e. you are not outed.
“I’m not outing you, tbogg.”
I.e. I’m not going to.
I think you’ve decided you want to do it, and you’re going to make a big martyr out of yourself.
Go ahead. Have fun.
I can’t make it any clearer, TBogg. You want to out yourself, fine. Go ahead.
I’m not doing it.
By that time, I figured he was already typing up his big “martyr” post complaining about how I “outed” him — by running a search on his e-mail address and looking at a name that popped up with a first name beginning with “T” and a last name beginning with “Bogg.” And then teasing him about it in a way that was confusing his commenters until he drew attention to it and made it clear for them.
I could tell he was writing that post. And he was. And here it is.
I read through the first 45 comments or so, and most of his commenters said: Duh. You didn’t really try to hide it. Your moniker is basically your name.
So the martyr thing isn’t really working out too well for him.
But if you see a big influx of angry lefty trolls, now you’ll know why.