Amanda Marcotte has resigned from the Edwards campaign (h/t Jeff G.):
I was hired by the Edwards campaign for the skills and talents I bring to the table, and my willingness to work hard for what’s right. Unfortunately, Bill Donohue and his calvacade of right wing shills don’t respect that a mere woman like me could be hired for my skills, and pretended that John Edwards had to be held accountable for some of my personal, non-mainstream views on religious influence on politics (I’m anti-theocracy, for those who were keeping track). Bill Donohue—anti-Semite, right wing lackey whose entire job is to create non-controversies in order to derail liberal politics—has been running a scorched earth campaign to get me fired for my personal beliefs and my writings on this blog.
In fact, he’s made no bones about the fact that his intent is to “silence” me, as if he—a perfect stranger—should have a right to curtail my freedom of speech. Why? Because I’m a woman? Because I’m pro-choice? Because I’m not religious? All of the above, it seems.
Regardless, it was creating a situation where I felt that every time I coughed, I was risking the Edwards campaign. No matter what you think about the campaign, I signed on to be a supporter and a tireless employee for them, and if I can’t do the job I was hired to do because Bill Donohue doesn’t have anything better to do with his time than harass me, then I won’t do it. I resigned my position today and they accepted.
I am genuinely, sincerely saddened. I have said on many occasions that I didn’t want Marcotte to lose her job. I explained part of the reason I felt that way in this post:
I agree with Allah:
I don’t like to see anyone fired, no matter how much they deserve it . . .
I share this attitude in general. The feeling, which Allah and I share, is that blogging has gotten too dangerous. This is one reason that I have said repeatedly that I hope Edwards keeps Marcotte. And if he has fired her, I hope he does rehire her.
But in that same post, I admitted a much more cynical reason to want to see Edwards keep her:
The other reason I hope Edwards uses Marcotte is that she is an obvious liability to Edwards. Since I don’t like Edwards, why in the world would I want him to lose a liability?
So yes, while some on the left have falsely claimed that I was against her being Edwards’s blogger, I was actually very much in favor of it, as the record shows. Crazy lefties liked her in that position because of her inflammatory rhetoric; more rational lefties liked her in that position despite it. I agreed with the crazy lefties . . . just for a different reason.
But — assuming that Edwards had something to do with this — I can’t say I’m surprised. I do think the hire calls into question Edwards’s judgment, and I think he realized that. While the lefties tended to defend her personal blogging as separate from her campaign blogging, the fact is that they were intimately related. Marcotte was hired to be a campaign blogger on the strength of her blog writings — and then Edwards turned out to be appalled (or so he claims) by her blog writings. It was enough to make you wonder: what’s going to happen if this guy is President and gets a Supreme Court nomination?
I nominated Judge Reinhardt to the Supreme Court on the strength of his judicial opinions. It has now come to my attention that some of his opinions are certifiably insane. I am appalled by these opinions and would never rule that way myself. But hey, everybody deserves a fair shake, and I stand by my nomination.
Anyway, Allah warned us five days ago:
If you think you’ve seen the worst of Marcotte, wait ’til the axe finally falls and she gets to respond to the uproar at Pandagon, using her idiom of choice instead of the diplospeak the campaign’s momentarily forced on her.
And Marcotte makes Allah into a prophet when she says:
There is good news. The main good news is that I don’t have a conflict of interest issue anymore that was preventing me from defending myself against these baseless accusations. So it’s on. . . the real story is that we liberals are not taking this crap any longer and we’re pushing back. And now that I’m attached to only myself again, I’m ready and eager to join in the pushing back with you. Like Lorraine say, Jesus did not say to shut your piehole.
I have a feeling she’s going to tell us what Jesus did say. And it’s going to involve the f-word.
UPDATE: Jeff G. has more.
UPDATE x2: Yes, I’ve said the f-word myself. Many, many times. And plenty of other profane words to boot. I’m not a Puritan and don’t pretend to be.
And if a presidential candidate ever hired me (ha!), and he was seeking the vote of the crucial long-haired-stoner-resembling-Shaggy’s-unkempt-cousin constituency, or the dishonest-self-righteous-innuendo-spreading-sock-puppet-lefty-lawyer constituency . . . well, I’d sit him down before he hired me, and warn him about a few things.
Marcotte alienated constituencies a little wider than this. Just to take one example, she bagged on every anti-abortion Christian in the country, branding them all as misogynists. If Edwards didn’t know about this, she should have been savvy enough to tell him. It’s not all about the f-word, it’s about how it’s employed.
UPDATE x3: Via Darleen comes a link to the post that probably did her in, with this quote:
The Christian version of the virgin birth is generally interpreted as super-patriarchal, where god is viewed as so powerful he can impregnate without befouling himself by touching a woman, and women are nothing but vessels.
That was posted yesterday.
After all the squawking about her previous insulting comments about Christians generally, and the virgin birth in particular, it would come as no particular surprise if Edwards saw this and pulled the plug. As commenters note, it’s possible that she didn’t even realize she was being insulting.
UPDATE x4: Gloating over her losing her job (if that’s what happened) is crass. I’m seeing a lot of sites doing that. It’s unseemly. Please stop it.
UPDATE x5: Pandagon already has a link to a Form 3949 A, calling for Donohue’s organization to lose its tax-exempt status. It looks like a compelling document that will spark immediate action at the IRS — coming as it does from “Auguste” (no last name) with an address of “123 Main St” in “Everytown, USA.”
Yeah, John Edwards is devastated to lose his link to this crowd . . .
UPDATE x6: Howard Kurtz has this piece about the resignation in tomorrow’s Washington Post. It will appear on Page A04.
UPDATE x7: A comment from Marcotte on her “Announcement” post:
BTW, I’m still in Austin! I’m packed and ready to go and got my truck repaired to drive to NC, but I’m not leaving, it appears.
Does that sound like someone who quit voluntarily?
It’s not impossible, I guess.
[posted by Justin Levine]
In a past life, I actually used to be a film critic for a cool local rag known as the Beverly Hills Weekly. It was a great gig. Even if I knew that few people were actually reading my column, it was still the right people in terms of the show biz community if you know what I mean. (Unfortunately, the paper’s website hasn’t archived its early past issues when I was writing for them). I always enjoyed reviewing bad films more than good ones. I felt that it brought out my best writing skills.
If I thought hijacking a plane carrying prints of the film and crashing it into Murphy’s house would put a stop to it, I’d go out and buy a box cutter right now.
[posted by Justin Levine]
The L.A. Times‘s Tim Rutten has a column about media coverage of the death of Anna Nicole Smith. While noting that wall-to-wall TV coverage was to be expected, there was a new twist:
What was different here was the way in which she made the leap from tabloid covers to the front pages of ostensibly serious newspapers.
The mainstream journalistic coverage of Smith’s death is among the first such stories driven, in large part, by an editorial perception of public interest derived mainly from Internet traffic. Throughout the afternoon Thursday, editors across the country watched the number of “hits” recorded for online items about Smith’s death. These days, it’s the rare newspaper whose meeting to discuss the content of the next day’s edition doesn’t include a recitation of the most popular stories on the paper’s website. It’s a safe bet that those numbers helped shove Anna Nicole Smith onto a lot of front pages.
Rutten warns of the dangers of newspapers falling prey to the “numbers game” of chasing Internet hits, and says:
Standing on the cusp of this inevitable transformation, it’s a good moment for American newspapers to take a reflective breath to consider just how they want to play this numbers game — or, more important, whether they want to play it at all.
If that were to occur, then Anna Nicole Smith would not have died in vain.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention . . . here’s a screenshot of the Google Ads under Rutten’s column:
P.S. Yes, I know. Those with Google ads don’t pick the topics, and the topics play off the content of the post or article to which they are attached. It’s still funny.