Patterico's Pontifications


My Chat With Gennette Cordova (By Aaron with Skeptical Updates from Patterico) (UPDATE: Gennette Appears in Comments and Refuses to Answer Patterico’s Questions)

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 9:05 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

That’s right folks, a true rarity on my part.  I am about to do original reporting. As you guys know I have argued (based solely on information that was in the public domain), that Gennette Cordova, intended recipient of the Tweetpic seen around the world, was very likely an online paramour with Rep. Weiner.  And you can read this old post where I made the case, as well as this one where I noticed that the New York Times claimed that she did not share all the information she had.  That word “claimed” will become relevant in a moment.

In the Twitterverse, I had frankly hectored her a little about it with sarcastic comments about the coincidences lining up.  But at some point along the way I suspected she felt a little besieged and that my approach was not productive.  And I think she felt she honestly wanted to tell me and Patrick how she felt we might be going wrong on the Ethel story in a way that might prove frankly prescient.  Anyway, one way or the other, I convinced her to chat with me by DMs and basically I had a long discussion with her about the whole thing.

Now judging credibility is a difficult thing to do by text chat.  I can’t see her expression and I can’t hear the tone of her voice.  But what she shared with me was a plausible and consistent story that I frankly find convincing.  Yes, barring any surprising developments, I take back my opinion that she was Rep. Weiner’s online paramour. Of course I am absolutely convinced he was seeking that kind of relationship, and I think that infamous Tweetpic was his attempt to move in that direction, but I don’t think she was reciprocating.  All she was, was political admirer of his that attracted his attention.

But I would rather let you look at the actual conversation.  Now, I am not going to quote every typo, etc.  I am going to clean this up to be more readable.  And when the delays in twitter make us talk past each other, I moved around questions and responses to pair them up better.  Read and judge for yourself.

Now this started off with me publicly challenging her (here and here) based on the claim, found in this New York Times article, that she had refused to provide them copies of all of her exchanges with the Congressman.

That prompted her to finally agree to follow me, allowing me to send her direct messages, writing:


Weinergate: Five Is Not Two

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:19 pm

Follow the timeline, people. From the New York Post:

The girl’s mother, whose name is being withheld, told The Post Wednesday that Weiner sent nothing obscene — and sent only two brief messages to her daughter about seeing him during an April school trip to the Capitol.

The teen, who idolized Weiner, was “disappointed” in him after his confession.

The mom said she pointedly questioned her daughter about whether Weiner sent her anything obscene, and the girl swore it was all G-rated.

So on Wednesday, the media was told there were only two DMs to Ethel from Weiner. It is not clear whether the mom saw those two DMs — but it is clear that she was relying on her daughter’s word that there were only two messages.

Then, Thursday morning, I published Part 2 of my series, noting the “Tights and cape shit” line (the line that the New York Times has managed to transfer into “Tights and cape” with no expletive). And on Thursday evening, I published Part 3.

The next day, the police knocked on the door, and a Fox reporter was there. And then yesterday (Friday) the New York Times publishes this:

Representative Anthony D. Weiner said on Friday that he exchanged at least five private messages on Twitter this spring with a 17-year-old Delaware girl who became an admirer of his after hearing him speak during a high school trip to Washington.

Five, those of you proficient in math will note, is not two.

Interestingly, an unnamed family member talked to the New York Times and acknowledged that there were five messages. And that family member set forth more details regarding the content of those five messages. The first two sound like the two described in the New York Post article:

The girl’s contact with Mr. Weiner started in early April, after her trip to Washington. The congressman spoke to her school group, and she began following him on Twitter, posting a public message saying how much she liked his speech.

Two days later, Mr. Weiner began following her on Twitter. On her profile, she says she aspires to be president. In a private message he sent to her, he said: “How hip am I talking to a future president.”

Delighted that she had heard directly from a congressman, the girl wrote a public post on her Twitter feed: “talking to Rep Weiner from New York right now! is my life real?”

At the time, a group of conservatives was monitoring Mr. Weiner’s Twitter activity, after noticing that he was sending messages to a pornographic star from Tennessee.

When members of the group saw the girl’s post, suggesting she was engaging in a private conversation with Mr. Weiner, they alerted the congressman that they were watching him. “@RepWeiner new pal is a high school girl. First porn actresses now little girls. Weird.”

According to the girl’s family member, people in the group also copied the girl on some of the messages they sent to him, so she sent Mr. Weiner a private message telling him that she felt she was being harassed. He apologized to her in a private message, and removed her from the list of people he followed on Twitter.

So there are two DMs: 1) the initial follow referencing her profile (which also says she loves marching band, showing he knew she was in high school) and 2) the apology and unfollow when Dan Wolfe and his crew mentioned it.

But then, there were three moreafter a Congressman who had unfollowed her because of appearances decided to follow her again . . . almost like a guy who can’t help himself:

The girl responded to the appeal and posted a public message to him: “Don’t forget me. I used to follow you.” On May 16, he began following the girl again, and over the next 10 days they had three private message exchanges, the family member said.

One was about baseball. In another, he replied to a question she had about legislation by jokingly asking for her advice, the family member said. His third message to her was in response to a link she posted to a YouTube video of his giving a speech, with the message: “My true love.”

In a blog post on Tumblr, she later shared the contents of that private message from him. In it, Mr. Weiner appeared to liken himself to a superhero.

“I came back strong,” he wrote. “Large. Tights and cape. …”

The New York Times does not say how it supposedly knows the content of these messages.

That description is coming from an unnamed family member. If it’s the mom, then that means the description of the three messages came from the girl, and not from the mom seeing those messages personally. Because we know from the New York Post that up until Wednesday, when I published my blog posts, the mom was told about only 2 direct messages.

What this means is: if the New York Post story is accurate, the information in the New York Times regarding a) how many messages there were and b) what they said is coming from . . . Ethel.

Maybe Ethel really is telling the truth about there having been only five messages. I’m not saying she’s not. But it is important to understand the ultimate source of the pronouncements you are seeing in the New York Times — a publication that we already know has whitewashed several issues in various different ways (such as wording the “Tights and cape shit” line to remove any reference to the profanity).

The source of the description of the messages’ content is not the reporter having seen the messages. It is not the mom having seen the messages. The description most likely comes from Ethel herself.

There is at least one way to know for sure, of course. Twitter saves direct messages. Someone could subpoena them or get a search warrant for them — or get Rep. Weiner’s permission (or Ethel’s permission) to get them from Twitter. That would be more certain than the “investigation” we have seen so far.

I hasten to add: this is not about the girl. It is horrible that the girl is being placed in this position. She is being placed in this position by Rep. Weiner.

On Weiner’s Therapy: Not To Be a Turd in the Punchbowl, but… (Update: Rangel’s Infuriating Defense) (Update: Police End Their Investigation?)

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 3:00 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

BIG UPDATE: Police end their investigation?

A spokesman says police in Delaware have completed their investigation into Rep. Anthony Weiner’s online contact with a 17-year-old girl.

C.R. McLeod, a spokesman for the New Castle County government, told The Associated Press on Saturday that investigators have concluded their probe and don’t plan any further comment “unless something new arises that needs their attention.”

That is weirdly tight-lipped.

H/T: Hot Air.

Update: David Weigel takes us back in time, all the way to… Monday, when Weiner said this.

This is not something that can be treated away; this is my own personal mistake.

Update (II): Rangel offers a defense:

Rangel suggested that other members of Congress had done things more immoral than Weiner.
Rangel said Weiner “wasn’t going with prostitutes. He wasn’t going out with little boys.”


The original post follows…

So this morning we learn that apparently the Weiner is seeking treatment, I guess for sex addiction or something.

Indeed, he is requesting a short leave of absence from the House.  Hey, I have a better idea.  Leave and don’t come back.  But then he won’t do that unless he really has no other choice because 1) he can’t afford to lose his job and 2) he will lose his best virtual pick up line, “I’m Congressman Weiner.”

So, sex addiction… or at least sext addiction?  Myself, I tend to agree with South Park in its episode on the Tiger Woods story.  In the first clip, Kyle is mistakenly identified as a sex addict and the group therapist explains to us the mistake that sex addicts make:

In other words a lot of these guys seem to think, as Martin Luther King said, that there is only one commandment to obey:

The other thing is that we have adopted a sort of a pragmatic test for right and wrong—whatever works is right. (Yes) If it works, it’s all right. Nothing is wrong but that which does not work. If you don’t get caught, it’s right. [laughter] That’s the attitude, isn’t it? It’s all right to disobey the Ten Commandments, but just don’t disobey the eleventh, “Thou shall not get caught.”

(Mind you, Dr. King is denouncing this attitude.)  And apparently even Hillary seems to think the only problem  is that he was caught:

Clinton is said to be furious with how “stupid” Rep. Anthony Weiner acted when he tried to hide that he’d carried on a series of sleazy sexting sessions with at least six women on the Internet over the past three years….

The source said Hillary is mostly upset with how Weiner tried to cover up the allegations for a week before coming clean during a news conference on Monday afternoon.

“What especially infuriates Hillary is how Weiner blatantly lied, and then gave that embarrassing and humiliating press conference when he ’fessed up,” the longtime Clinton supporter told the newspaper.

“She can’t believe he’d just be so stupid about the whole thing.”

Back to South Park. as the episode progresses, the President declares that the epidemic of sex addiction is caused by an alien wizard who he asserts has been tracked to a historic landmark. In the middle of the silliness, a SWAT team member gives us what has to be the lesson of the episode.


“I Think I Was More Happy to Be Alive Than Upset;” Brendan Marrocco Comes Home

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 1:04 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

(Please do make sure you jump below the fold and learn how to help two worthy charities.)

If you are feeling icky from a scandal where one of the better outcomes is if you can say “[w]ell at least [the politician] didn’t sext a minor,” maybe this will give you a little spiritual renewal: U.S. Army infantryman Brendan Marrocco came home today.

Here’s Brendan himself:

And this picture, drawn back a little, is important to see, too:

So as you can see this American hero lost three of his limbs and most of the fourth.  As we will learn in a moment, it appears that they reattached much of his left arm, but still there isn’t a hand or foot left.  Here he is talking to CBS News about how this happened:


Top 5 Creepy / Pathetic Anthony Weiner Quotes

Filed under: General — Stranahan @ 12:16 pm

[Guest post by Lee Stranahan]

All Non-Sexual. (I may do a separate category for those.)


5) This is my "pull my finger" shot.

To Lisa Weiss 

Hawt. Anthony knows how to chat the ladies.

4) “not to the best of my knowledge”

To crowd of reporters and a vast TV audience when asked if he’d been communicating with underage girls.

3) “You do the questions, I do the answers and this jackass interrupts me…”

To CNN’s Dana Bash

If you haven’t watched the interview that turned the MSM against Weiner since he confessed, grab the popcorn. Amazingly bad performance.

2) Please understand i am a very important man.

To Traci Nobles

We get it

1) How hip am I talking to a future president.

To high school student ‘Ethel’

Answer: not hip at all. And – there’s no way that Weiner this girl’s Twitter or Facebook and thought ‘future president’, which makes this pandering triple pathetic.

Feel free to add your own comments!

– Lee Stranahan

Pelosi: Weiner Should Resign

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:58 am

Story here.

New York (CNN) — Three weighty Democratic voices — including Nancy Pelosi — on Saturday called for the resignation of embattled U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, who has been under fire after admitting to inappropriate communications with women online.

Per Larry O’Connor on Twitter, contact with underage girls was the final straw.

By the way, people have been very complimentary to me for breaking this story, and that’s wonderful — but I don’t really deserve the credit. In coming days, I hope to talk more about the people who do.

UPDATE: He’s seeking treatment and now reportedly wants a leave of absence.

Weinergate: Ethel’s “Honey Mustard” Tweet Related to Boyfriend? Plus, Further Damning Details in that NYT Piece

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:50 am

Verum Serum has the evidence. I find it compelling. Then again, it also fits together with some other things I know and (frustratingly) can’t talk about. At least yet.

Then again, the use of the word “Weiner,” when Ethel clearly said she loved Rep. Weiner, does not necessarily sound entirely like an accident. And there is no evidence that she ever told Rep. Weiner it was not a reference to him. And it’s his state of mind that matters, not hers.

When John Sexton mentioned it to me, I said he should write it up. The truth is the best argument.

Does this exonerate Weiner from impropriety? Not at all. In September 2010, Weiner said to the Las Vegas blackjack dealer Lisa Weiss: “Cape. Tights. Looking for my sidekick.” That led, the next day, to this:

[WEISS:] oooohhh…i bet you look hot in tights! can i be your sidekick? get your ass to vegas!!

[WEINER:] stop staring at my weapon! I’m effecting the vegas trip. this whole reelection thing is keeping me tied up

It was a line, you see, that got a response. And it eventually led to Weiner saying things like: “You will gag on me before you cum with me in you.”

So, when he said to young 17-year-old Ethel: “I came back strong. Large. In charge. Tights and cape shit …” it’s important to remember that he was throwing out a line that had worked before. Maybe he just ran out of time with Ethel.

By the way, he knew damn well he was talking to someone in high school. The New York Times article Aaron linked earlier has the following passage:

The girl’s contact with Mr. Weiner started in early April, after her trip to Washington. The congressman spoke to her school group, and she began following him on Twitter, posting a public message saying how much she liked his speech.

Two days later, Mr. Weiner began following her on Twitter. On her profile, she says she aspires to be president. In a private message he sent to her, he said: “How hip am I talking to a future president.”

Delighted that she had heard directly from a congressman, the girl wrote a public post on her Twitter feed: “talking to Rep Weiner from New York right now! is my life real?”

So, he gives a speech to a high school group. A high school junior praises the speech. And then he starts following her after that praise of his speech. And after he reads her profile, in which she says she wants to be president, and also talks about . . . marching band:

I love LeBron James, marching band, and sleeping. Politics is my one true love, and I will be president.

So this guy knew he was talking to a high school girl, and he used a grooming line that had been successful with an older woman.

While we’re making the connection between Weiner’s attitudes towards Weiss and Ethel, allow me to remind you of the following. The NYT article implies that Weiner followed Ethel the same day she declared she was talking to him and asking with wonder: “Is my life real?” Remember from our timeline the day that was? April 13:

Ethel: @RepWeiner I’m in love with you
13 Apr

Ethel: Watchin @RepWeiner on cnn <3
13 Apr

Ethel: Seriously talking to Representative Weiner from New York right now! Like is my life real?
13 Apr

Guess what else he was doing on April 13? Chatting it up with Lisa Weiss:

April 13th 2011

[WEISS:] hey u

[WEINER:] why hello

[WEISS:] don’t you ever sleep?

[WEINER:] uh, its 9 here. my lisa time

[WEISS:] awe..i love that i need some anthony time. u must be working again…thought it was my time!

That’s one week after Weiner was telling Weiss: “you would be good at that. your little pic makes me hard . . . I was hoping my fat cock would be a selling point too.”

Incidentally, the New York Times article, while packed with pro-Weiner bias (about which more below), contains several very incriminating tidbits like this, which may not be apparent to you unless you are steeped in the details of the scandal.

For example, the story also leaves open the very real possibility that the DMs described as having been sent to Ethel are not the only ones she received:

The family was aware that there had been exchanges between Mr. Weiner and the girl but assumed that all of their conversations had taken place on a public Twitter feed. Then a scandal erupted last month over a photo Mr. Weiner sent of himself in his underwear to a college student.

If this rendition is accurate, Ethel’s mom didn’t know about any DMs until after the scandal broke. Wouldn’t you expect that, if any incriminating DMs existed, Ethel would have deleted them as soon as Weiner’s behavior became a nationwide story?

BONUS MEDIA ANALYSIS: I love that bit about how he sent out “a photo . . . of himself in his underwear.”

Yeah. That’s one way to put it. There is also the tidbit, which goes unmentioned, that in his underwear was the clearly visible outline of an erect penis. You know, the thing that really makes it a scandal. But why report that part?

While we’re complaining about the New York Times story, please note how it takes the above “Tights and cape shit” quote and cleans it up as follows:

“I came back strong,” he wrote. “Large. Tights and cape. …”

Interesting how the reporter omits any reference to the word “shit,” which infuses the communication with a creepy, seedy familiarity that would make any father’s blood boil. A Congressman talking about “tights and cape” is odd. A 46-year-old Congressman talking to a high school junior about “tights and cape shit” is very different. By using a period followed by an ellipsis — not just omitting the profanity but pretending it was never even there — the reporter twists the facts to make Weiner’s conduct more innocent.

But again: the best argument is the truth. And the more we learn, the worse this guy looks. Whether or not Congressman Weiner and Ethel engaged in any actual dirty talk, there is no question he was a guy who prowled online looking for cuties to talk dirty with. There is no question he used the same line on Ethel that he had already successfully used on another women as a test for whether they would talk dirty. And there is no question he knew she was in high school.

Anyone see a problem with this picture?

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