Patterico's Pontifications


Assignment Desk: Minimize Monica Crowley’s Plagiarism

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 3:20 pm

Trump advisor Monica Crowley (actually, her ghostwriter, I’m guessing) plagiarized large sections of other people’s work in a book published in 2012. Crowley “will serve as Trump’s senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council.” Interesting to me is not the plagiarism, so much as the Trump transition team’s reaction:

Trump’s transition team is standing by Crowley.

“Monica’s exceptional insight and thoughtful work on how to turn this country around is exactly why she will be serving in the Administration,” a statement from a transition spokesperson said.

“HarperCollins—one of the largest and most respected publishers in the world—published her book which has become a national best-seller. Any attempt to discredit Monica is nothing more than a politically motivated attack that seeks to distract from the real issues facing this country.”

They lie so effortlessly. It comes with practice.

Your job, should you wish to accept it, is to minimize Crowley’s plagiarism in the comments below, so as to serve Trump’s partisan interests. Suggested angles of attack include:

  • 1. There are more important things going on in the world. This one is good because there are always more important things than plagiarism going on in the world. It’s a classic line of attack for scandals where someone is caught red-handed.
  • 2. It’s not really plagiarism. This is a tough one, but channel Trump. He can lie bald-facedly about anything. You can too. Give it a try!
  • 3. It’s CNN. Ignore the facts in front of your nose and attack the source.
  • 4. What aboutism. I call this “You mean like?”ism but that’s not as catchy. Find examples from the other side of people doing the same or worse. Cite them without explaining why it matters.
  • 5. Attack the blog post. A variant of other maneuvers, in particular #1, this tactic distinguishes itself primarily by the addition of vitriol towards the author of the post that brought this to your attention. Bonus points for using the phrase “Trump Derangement Syndrome” (TDS will do), declaring that the site is no longer worth reading, or other similar cheap personal shots.
  • 6. It’s old news. Best used in conjunction with #3 and/or other techniques.

Points will be deducted if you acknowledge the plagiarism and say it is inappropriate without applying at least one of the aforementioned techniques. Include at least a splash of #1 to avoid the penalty.

Whatever you say, say it loud and with great fervor and self-righteousness. That usually helps.

142 Responses to “Assignment Desk: Minimize Monica Crowley’s Plagiarism”

  1. Her ghostwriter plagiarized RedState, apparently, among other places.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  2. Once the thread is dead, I’ll award points based on the broadest and most effective combinations of these techniques.

    Or I won’t. Who knows? I sometimes run out of energy these days.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  3. A lot of high-profile people use assistants and ghostwriters.
    Let’s wait until the facts come out before we have a total freak-out about this.

    … just ask Bill Ayers! (LOL)

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  4. No minimizing. The worst she can ever hope to become is Vice President.

    NJRob (43d957)

  5. err… best.

    NJRob (43d957)

  6. “Let’s wait until the facts come out” — that’s an interesting one. What “facts” have not come out that we should wait on? I assume you mean who the ghostwriter was who did the plagiarism? I don’t see that person’s name listed on the title but (as I said in the post) I assume there was one.

    “Total freak-out” I’ll accept as a variant of technique #1.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  7. No minimizing. The worst she can ever hope to become is Vice President.

    #4 with a twist. Well done.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  8. *bow*

    NJRob (43d957)

  9. If she copied information without citation that shows upon her character. It shows she’d fit right in in DC though.

    Does it affect how she would do the job for Trump?

    I don’t see how Melania’s citations as a black woman in today’s world have any bearing on the subject. 🙂

    NJRob (43d957)

  10. i hope i never have a plagiaristic ghostwriter but if i do i’ll try to do christian forgiveness on them

    everybody get down tonight i will say

    everybody – including you my errant ghostwriter – let’s wang chung tonight i will say

    and we’ll all float on alright

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  11. Patterico,

    Before we tar and feather Monica Crowley, we should allow her to offer an explanation.
    It may be that she did this.
    It also may be that one of her assistants/ghostwriters is responsible.

    But let’s wait to find out.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  12. not everything has to end with burn the witch

    america used to have much more imagination than this

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  13. I’m going to try to run the table with a #5 entry:

    “Yeah, this is from the same guy who told us that Obama was basically a ‘good man.’ And how does this matter when the Middle East is collapsing.”

    How’d I do?

    JVW (6e49ce)

  14. It also may be that one of her assistants/ghostwriters is responsible.

    I’m sorry, but that defense only works if you are tenured Ivy League professor or Fareed Zakaria.

    JVW (6e49ce)

  15. seriously though who’s monica crowley

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  16. oh i googled she’s one of those blond fox news things


    happyfeet (28a91b)

  17. 1. The world is burning down around the departing NIC.
    2. If the offending passages were repurposed by the ghostwriter, it’s a total save-the-planet move!
    3. This is CNN.
    4. Joe Biden stole from across the pond and all he got was this vice-presidency.
    5. There’s a job at the News of the World waiting for Patterico if/when he wants to get serious about a writing gig.
    6. My God, man! Crowley learned at the knee of Richard Nixon back in the 90s! Besides, the new journalism is all about collusion, lap-doggery, currying favor and feathering nests. All effing bets are off! Your ethics are vestiges of your white privilege and you can try mansplaining that away until God calls her chilluns home.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  18. Meh, I would have though she copied from Louise munch, she’s there scoops of crazy.

    narciso (d1f714)

  19. is it just me or do you too get the feeling that 90% of the audience of these narsty blond fox news things is fat men with small dogs

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  20. Greetings:

    Didn’t Joe Biden used to have a coked up son in the Navy ???

    11B40 (6abb5c)

  21. Or dipsomaniacs.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  22. i know he had a coked-up daughter named ashley

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  23. his sons have the life span of 80s pop stars

    so yeah it’s likely drugs are involved

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  24. #6 Patterico, perhaps you’re conflating a collaborator with a ghostwriter.
    A collaborator’s name will appear with the name of the primary author.
    But a ghostwriter is someone who contributes without public credit. Hence the ghost metaphor.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  25. There’s the good dutiful son, who passed , and the coked up one who ended up on the board if a Russian oligarch controlled Ukrainian oil company.

    narciso (d1f714)

  26. What prolific writer has not made a mistake in their career?

    Monica served a president with distinction and will be a tremendous asset to the next one.

    If Republicans are going to destroy their own, we have no chance dealing with the truly corrupt Democrats.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  27. 4. is really just another name for ‘Tu Quoque’.

    Johnny Mustard (b996d4)

  28. “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone at her.”

    elissa (377b6d)

  29. How about #7: a variation on the “Bad Upbringing” defense?

    “In her formative years (that is, intellectually formative years), Monica Crowley fell under the influence of Richard Nixon. . . ”

    She is but a product of her upbringing. Therefore: Not Her Fault.

    gwjd (032bef)

  30. Oh, I guess Col Haiku beat me to it.

    gwjd (032bef)

  31. Monica Crowley would look great in a nurse’s uniform with a short tight skirt and white stockings with garter belt like I heard they wear in late-night Cinemax movies and that should count for something.

    Anyway, what about the time Melania Trump lifted Michelle Obama’s convention speech and the country went ahead and elected Trump anyway? It’s not like we haven’t seen this before, and people think it’s more important to make American grapes again (and stop importing them from China*).

    And can it really be called plagiarism when conservative writers say the same thing? I don’t think so. Of course they will agree on the same issues and sound the same. CNN has no compunction about pushing the narrative of 86 self-appointed climatologists parroting each other as “THE scientific consensus”.

    The vital point we’re missing is that Trump promised that he would appoint the best people and we should give him a chance to. He has not even been sworn in yet, for crying out loud. Let’s just be thankful that we’re not discussing a President-elect Hillary appointee.
    *I stole that from SNL.

    nk (dbc370)

  32. I have no idea what you’re talking about, and I doubt you do either.

    First off, your anti-science bias is showing. You’ve entirely rejected economic science (Austrian economics means never having to go to the data; it’s all about the feels) and here someone who uses other information to build an argument is being shamed by you, because, what, Ted Cruz didn’t win?

    Second, there’s simply no showing that this was plagiarism in the classic sense. The story *you* link to says Andrew McCarthy was a friend of hers. Whose to say whose ideas these originally were? And here you are saying her book is ghost-written when it contains ideas her personal friend had articulated. Isn’t that evidence that these are her ideas? Do you just not care?

    And, for pity’s sake, plagiarizing Redstate? Are you kidding me? That’s where serial plagiarizer Ben Domenech was. You think you can sort out who stole from who? You want to say it’s Crowley because, well, let’s face it, she’s not a dudebro like you and Domenech? Here’s a headline: Hard-core inflexible conservatives attack women. Let’s all act surprised.

    So here’s what happens: Crowley writes a book in 2012. Nobody who was allegedly plagiarized calls her out on it. Everyone who has an actual complaint is nobody at all except known Hillary mouthpiece CNN. Everyone who has a theoretical complaint is either collaborator with her or a known bad actor. And you join in the mainstream media chorus against her, because you still think well of Ted Cruz, who repeatedly called Donald Trump, “Great.”

    Maybe it’s time you took seriously the words of your loser friend, loser. Donald won. He’s surrounding himself with winners. You can’t stand it because you’re a civically illiterate loser with tiny ideas on a tiny blog, looking to side with Hillary and ankle-bite greatness.

    It’s over. Give up.

    JRM (de6363)

  33. Monica Crowley would look great in a nurse’s uniform with a short tight skirt and white stockings with garter belt like I heard they wear in late-night Cinemax movies and that should count for something.

    My work here is done.

    JVW (6e49ce)

  34. Your job, should you wish to accept it, is to minimize Crowley’s plagiarism in the comments below

    What’s important is whether what she said was right or not, not whether it was plagiarized.

    She had the sense to realize what was well said, and well founded, and used it, and only icked the best. More people should do that. Things used to work that way, in Byzantium, and we would have better quality books that way. (Now if she just copied things at random, that would not apply)

    Her job will not be to say any original things, but to communicate the work and thoughts of others, so her experience is perfect for this job.

    Sammy Finkelman (6c2cdd)

  35. She had the sense to realize what was well said, and well founded, and used it, and only icked the best. More people should do that.

    Oh, Sammy, Sammy. Sammy. Sammy.

    It doesn’t work that way. Yeah, you can and should cite other people’s work if it is of appropriate quality, but what you can’t do is take somebody else’s thoughts and recycle them as your own. It’s completely fine if I write, As Sammy Finkelman points out, Crowley’s job will not be to come up with original ideas, but to synthesize those of others, and if I directly quote you I need to put it in quotation marks. Otherwise, I’m stealing from you, especially when I put your material in a book that I then offer for sale. As I said earlier, only superstar Ivy League faculty and Fareed Zakeria can get away with outright plagiarism.

    JVW (6e49ce)

  36. It depends on who she plagerized from. Red State you say? In 2012?

    I’m not tired of winning yet.

    So I nominate your source for impeachment thusly.

    Video of CNN reporter Sara Ganim caught laughing while reporting on the Chicago torture of the mentally disabled kid.

    CNN, not fit for human consumption.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  37. Sammy is getting the spirit of the post, I think, JVW. In an original and creative way, too.

    nk (dbc370)

  38. What’s important is whether what she said was right or not, not whether it was plagiarized.

    She had the sense to realize what was well said, and well founded, and used it, and only picked the best. More people should do that. Things used to work that way, in Byzantium, and we would have better quality books that way. (Now if she just copied things at random, that would not apply.)

    Her job will not be to say any original things, but to communicate the work and thoughts of others, so her experience is perfect for this job.

    Jerryskids (16a4d5)

  39. You folks really think Trump hired Monica for her brains? You know the type of woman he likes. Monica is there for him to rest his eyes on at briefings while Mattis and Flynn are talking. Or do you think he should be looking at them?

    nk (dbc370)

  40. A couple of the first examples are not “plagiarism” as that term is understood in literary circles. “Plagiarism” involves the lifting of someone’s ORIGINAL ideas, and passing them off as your own.

    Mentioned in the blog post are references to the fact that she “lists a variety of so-called “pork” items she claimed were she claimed were part of the 2009 stimulus package.” A substantial similar/identical list found on other conservative websites.

    That is NOT plagarism. A listing of factual items, regardless of where the list originated, is not lifting “original” ideas belonging to someone else. Its simply a shortcut to having to gather the details of the same list oneself.

    Additionally, I don’t think it qualifies as “plagiarism” if you are looking to define a phrase like “Keynesian Multiplier” and you cut & paste a definition for that phrase from an Investopedia Page captioned “What Is the Keynesian Multiplier” UNLESS you are passing off the definition as something you came up with as original thought. You can cite to the source or the definition or not — that’s probably more an editorial determination than anything. Its like using an odd term in text, and then parenthetically defining it without saying where you got your definition. Big Whoop.

    But the lifting of passages that are shown at the end of the CNN article are much more clearly instances of plagiarism — and very typical where a few words are changed here and there in the text to alter the phrasing, but the import of the writing remains in tact.

    IMO this is probably much more widespread in todays “punditocracy” class, where they do way too much writing and not nearly enough thinking. The only way to keep up with the pace that some of them keep is to liberally dip into the works of others.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  41. CNN reports on “widespread” protests in the wake of Trump’s victory, then is caught out interviewing a CNN cameraman as the street protester.

    You got anyone else corroborating your story Pat?

    papertiger (c8116c)

  42. Okay, I’ll admit it; when I first looked at the article, I rolled my eyed and dismissed it because there were no examples. Then I scrolled down. And yup, there they are, plain as day – and definitive.

    Sorry to disappoint Patterico, but I’ll just say it; that’s plagiarism.

    Was it committed by Crowley, or her ghostwriter? If the latter, it’s incumbent upon Crowley to say so – otherwise it’s quite fair to blame Crowley.

    I’ve long been outraged by glaring plagiarism, such as by Joe Biden. I’m a bit more outraged over Biden because he’s in a higher office, but this is still very bad.

    Why can’t people just judge based on the details, not the partisan affiliation?

    Plagiarism (stealing someone’s work and after a few small alterations claiming it as your own) is done every day by MSM outlets. That’s no justification, just my way of saying that this is a very large swamp (and badly in need of draining).

    Arizona CJ (191c8a)

  43. I didn’t read the links but I haven’t seen anything that proves Crowley is a plagiarist. Thinking the same thoughts and expressing them in the same way is not plagiarism. It’s great minds thinking alike.

    Let’s give Donald Trump and his appointees the benefit of the doubt until he is inaugurated and has 4 years to show what he wants to accomplish. Until then, we should remember that Hillary lost. (LOL.)

    Of course, the media and the Democrats will do all they can to make this The Story Of The Year, as if it matters to them. Vice President Biden is proof that plagiarism is not important to them andit shouldn’t matter to us. Principles and character are yesterday’s politics. What matters today is that Donald Trump is tough and he won’t kowtow to anyone — unless he wants to give in or he decides to take the opposite position. Art of the Deal, baby!

    Come to think of it, no one gives Trump credit for all the smart things he says like “Make America Great Again,” “Get Even,” “Grab Them By The Pussy,”and “Be Brutal, Be Tough.” Why should Trump or anyone on his team give other people credit when people criticize and plagiarize Trump every day in news reports and blog posts? Trump never complains about people who plagiarize or criticize him.

    It’s only NeverTrumpers who worry about things like this because they want to hurt Trump. They would have won if they would be like Trump and stop complaining about other people.

    DRJ (15874d)

  44. In rebuttal to DRJ’s well reasoned and well snarked indictment I present this.

    Monica Crowley [jpg]

    papertiger (c8116c)

  45. Mostly dreary details of the series of unfortunate events that has been this administration, the solo’s plagiarism was distinct be assumed the identity of Neil kinnock, now a lord in the UK.

    narciso (d1f714)

  46. Isn’t it the job of a senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council to clearly and concisely communicate the ideas of her superiors for public consumption?

    A plagiarism charge isn’t a demerit. It’s a resume enhancement.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  47. #43 Arizona CJ, nobody’s said they support plagiarism. We’ve only said we should allow the woman an opportunity to defend herself against the charges before we build the gallows.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  48. I forgot the mic drop. [YouTube]

    papertiger (c8116c)

  49. I have to admit that I enjoyed her previous books:
    The Grapes of Anger
    The Sisters Karamazov
    The Sun Also Comes Up
    Moby Tom
    The Blue Badge of Courage

    nk (dbc370)

  50. And who can forget her magnum opus on economics: An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Countries

    nk (dbc370)

  51. Crowley’s sister is married to Alan Colmes, so there is a ’tain’t factor in play…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  52. As far as Incas recall, her counterpart was probably the Rhodes character, the one who failed his security clearance yet was assigned a minder to general Jones, who negotiated the hudna with the Sepah and the castros

    narciso (d1f714)

  53. Just for fun, let’s see if you believe your own argument. I will draw what I believe to be a fair analogy and let’s see if you can maintain your consistency.

    Let’s begin by establishing that both Ms. Crowley and her ghostwriter are, effectively, employees of HarperCollins (publishers like HarperCollins typically maintain a stable of ghostwriters for the purpose of penning books for the rich and famous). HarperCollins paid Crowley for the use of her name and the substance of the book to be published; they paid the ghostwriter for the form of the book. All three parties benefited, at least until the fact of the plagiarism became known. At that point, both Crowley and HarperCollins became victims, but with the proviso that HarperCollins was in a position to provide due diligence of the work product of their employee, the ghostwriter. It is your argument that Ms. Crowley should be held morally responsible for the plagiarism of the ghostwriter and that certain types of future employment should be foreclosed to her. Fair enough?

    Now let’s take a circumstance that should hit close to home: over a multi-year period the county crime lab in a neighboring county provided faked drug tests to the district attorney’s office for use in criminal prosecutions. It was a nightmare. Hundreds of cases had to be retroactively dismissed, even those in which the tainted evidence played a relatively minor role. Bad guys walked free. In this case, however, only those county employees directly involved in the faking a drug tests suffered any consequences. Other county employees, including the prosecuting attorneys, who benefited professionally from the successful prosecutions of high profile cases made possible by the faked tests results, suffered no consequences.

    Let’s set aside the entire issue of the negligence of the D.A. and his staff for failing to perform regular due diligence of the drug test results from the county lab (I see no reason why the D.A. doesn’t send out duplicate samples to private labs or those in surrounding jurisdictions for confirmation as a matter of routine) and focus on the Crowley question. Should these prosecutors, as well as other county employees who were involved in the perpetuation of the crime lab fraud, be held morally responsible for the faked test results and barred from certain types of future employment?

    The consistent answer should be yes. Is it yours?

    What you are doing is blaming the victim. Please don’t.


    So how many points is that worth?

    ThOR (c9324e)

  54. Since HarperCollins published Monica’s book, it was their responsibility alone to check for previously published material. Monica must not be blamed for the oversights and shortcomings of failed professionals who neglected their duties in an unseemly and predatory rush to take financial advantage of Monica’s timely political ascendancy.

    If she has unknowingly come to the same or similar observations as others it only serves to validate her conclusions and to acknowledge that her insights are firmly grounded in a vibrant and ongoing intellectual tradition.

    Her scholarship remains untarnished and serves as an example of the high ethical standards that we demand of our public figures.

    ropelight (19a16e)

  55. Her real bibliography:

    Nixon Off the Record: His Candid Commentary on People and Politics. New York: Random House. 1996. ISBN 9780679456810. OCLC 473225114.
    Nixon in Winter. New York: Random House. 1998. ISBN 9780679456957. OCLC 37688321.
    What the (Bleep) Just Happened?: The Happy Warrior’s Guide to the Great American Comeback. New York: Broadside Books, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers. 2012. ISBN 9780062131157. OCLC 768800592.

    Shows that her milieu is accurately recording the thoughts of her superiors.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  56. Sammy is getting the spirit of the post, I think, JVW. In an original and creative way, too.

    Dang it, Sammy is operating on a level of awesome that I can only dream of. Well played, Sammy. You will probably win the grand prize.

    JVW (6e49ce)

  57. Our elected officials set the standard. WJC showed it was OK to get a bjs. Obama showed that lying was OK. Reid demonstrated that it was OK to make stuff up. Byrd proved that racism was OK and Biden showed you could plagiarize without consequence. I did not want to the media like Williams or rather because or political leaders represented rich mines.

    Jim (a9b7c7)

  58. Not even good sarcasm DRJ.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  59. I read the link, it’s pretty clearly plagiarism. In my years in academia plagiarists wasted a great deal of my time.

    I wouldn’t hire a plagiarizer for anything, but that’s doesn’t seem to be a deal-breaker in the political and punditry worlds–Stephen Ambrose, Nina Totenburg, and somebody else mentioned Vice-President Biden and Fareed Zakaria alread, but there’s also Rand Paul and Barack Obama.

    Gabriel Hanna (d20cc4)

  60. Isn’t it the job of a senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council to clearly and concisely communicate the ideas of her superiors for public consumption?

    A plagiarism charge isn’t a demerit. It’s a resume enhancement.

    papertiger (c8116c) — 1/7/2017 @ 7:05 pm

    I in effect said that already. Plagiarist.

    NJRob (43d957)

  61. Greetings:

    Is she related to the media moderator Candy Crowley ??? Candy sure fill up a TV screen leaving Gwen Eye-full a distant third.

    11B40 (6abb5c)

  62. But Rob.

    I’m too lazy don’t have the time to read comments.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  63. Monica Crowley [jpg]

    Forgot to mention.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  64. 1. There are more important things going on in the world. This one is good because there are always more important things than plagiarism going on in the world. It’s a classic line of attack for scandals where someone is caught red-handed.

    Megyn Kelly going to NBC.

    Billary going to the inauguration of their pal.

    Donald Trump tweets about Ford.

    Celebrities acting like celebrities again.

    Trump associates accused of plagiarism.

    Maybe you care. I have no idea why you would. But maybe you do.

    It’s no more plagiarism than this response!

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  65. For quite a while she was a pretty regular panelist (one of 2 each show) representing the right side of things on The McLaughlin Group. Her “partner” was usually Tony Blankley or Pat Buchanan (ugh) and propagandizing the other side were such stellar lights as Eleanor Clift Lawrence O’Donnell and Clarence Page. As I recall Monica did a fine job on that show.

    elissa (377b6d)

  66. Greetings:

    Is Eleanor Clift still rocking the osteoporosis ???

    11B40 (6abb5c)

  67. I am looking for a ghost writer for my first book.

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  68. Pick me, AZ Bob. I can plagiarize with the best of them. Here’s a sample:

    The only time I ever met a clue was up in Laramie, Wyoming. There was a guy up there got himself very nicely dead by some means or other and this palooka was found by his sorrowing wife lyin’ face downwards with his head over the front steps.

    While the local county detective—who was a depressed sorta guy—an’ why not?—because he had got bad-fittin’ false teeth, halitosis an’ broken arches—which you will admit is not a help to any guy—was rushin’ round, measurin’ everything up an’ lookin’ all around the place with a magnifyin’ glass, I sorta wandered in an’ found a banana on the window ledge.

    I am just about to eat this banana when the detective guy says I mustn’t do this because the banana is probably a clue. He says that the fact that this banana is left on the window ledge means somethin’.

    He also says that the deceased guy—who is still lyin’ outside on the porch steps an’ not interested in anything at all, was very partial to bananas, an’ was always eatin’ same, an’ that maybe if I move this banana I will spoil the whole reconstruction as to how this guy killed himself by fallin’ down the porch steps an’ bustin’ his dome open.

    I do not agree with this detective that this banana is a clue. I think it is still a banana so I eat it, an’ ten minutes afterwards the local sawbones is workin’ on me with a stomach pump because this banana was filled up with enough arsenic to kill King Kong.

    So the case was bust wide open an’ we all got wise how the dead guy got dead.

    All this will prove to you guys that when your wife gets tired of you you should either take a train to some other place very quickly or else give up eatin’ fruit.

    nk (dbc370)

  69. This is either awesome or disturbing. I think a mixture but mostly awesome.

    JRM and DRJ did a bang-up job. JRM’s comment is so good that if I did not know his history, I would probably take it as serious. That’s really something.

    Haiku’s effort could be faulted for being formulaic but was solid anyway.

    I often skip Sammy’s comments (no offense, Sammy) but when people applauded his contribution here I went back and read it. I do not think he was kidding. But it’s kind of fun that I could be wrong.

    I think shipwreckedcrew was serious and yet his comment ready like a parody. In fact JRM’s read more like a real comment than swc’s, even though my assessment is that JRM’s was parody and swc’s was not.

    Rarely have I been so unsettled by a series of comments. It’s a mystery who is pulling the wool over whose eyes.

    Hey, it’s something different at least.

    I think my favorite part is that I really didn’t mean it as a literal assignment and yet many seem to have taken it that way and it is awesome.

    Patterico (dec327)

  70. I’m saddened that you think this is so important.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  71. Did you note that other than the comparison of text at the end of the piece, there were no examples given of what the plagiarized text was from her book?

    Did you note that the author of the CNN piece is the same guy who misrepresented what Trump said about Assange getting the death penalty — although he was just aping what Susan Wright wrote at your second home. Her piece is quite a bit of “quality journalism”.

    Not sure which of the two of them is less trustworthy based on their respective pieces — although I can find a basis for how Andrew came about his employment, whereas I can’t find a single reason why Wright has ascended to the platform she has.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  72. I’ll just cut to the default chase: Patterico, why are you always trying to delegitimize Trump’s presidency??

    Dana (d17a61)

  73. @Patterico: It’s a mystery who is pulling the wool over whose eyes.

    I find it hard to imagine you didn’t have that expectation when you originally posted; same as when you did your Revenant Mao vs Hillary poll. If people feel they are being trolled, some of them may troll back, and it may be hard to figure out whose tongues are in what sorts of cheeks.

    Gabriel Hanna (d20cc4)

  74. I don’t feel like the target of a troll. To the contrary.

    Patterico (dec327)

  75. For a change of pace how about a cab ride through Mr. Porche’s model train layout. [YouTube]
    The camera puts you in the driver’s seat.
    The thing is so detailed and immersive that when you finally come around a bend and get a look at the person running the train he seems like a 2000 ft tall human.

    Good break from politics. Try it.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  76. @Patterico: Nearly done with Human Action. Lots to think about, so far.

    Gabriel Hanna (d20cc4)

  77. It’s NOT plagiarism!
    When writing, I try to come up with the words that will best express my ideas and I imagine that many other people write in the same way. Sometimes the “best” way to express an idea in words can lead to similar outcomes when expressing the same idea, and when the exact words are used in two different written texts, I can’t consider it plagiarism per se.
    My belief is that the first writer was interloping upon the second writers as yet undiscovered intellectual property.
    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    Anga2010 (c98c84)

  78. If commenters get a vote, I vote first place to JRM and second to Sammy (who I think was clearly accepting your challenge). I think they should win because their comments capture Trump’s World so well that, solely by reading them, we can’t be sure they are parody.

    It misses the point to think comments answering this challenge are trolling or sarcastic. This isn’t making fun of Trump and his fans. This is how we think they see the world.

    DRJ (15874d)

  79. Trump supporters get tagged as vapid and self-righteous yet it’s nevertrump what’s absorbed with the petty, the minute, the wholly immaterial

    there’s so much of tremendous note happening in the whirl

    one could fill one’s entire days simply exploring the terrain of what is possible to imagine now that was wholly impossible to imagine mere weeks ago


    obamacare repeal

    a rethink of failmerica’s disastrous foreign policies

    tax reform

    an honest appraisal of the corrupt and oppressive urban areas what democrats have raped and bludgeoned for decades

    the most womens in a presidential cabinet in history?

    border security – and not the phony kind Meghan’s cowardly demented disgrace-to-the-uniform daddy “promised”

    education reform – particularly targeting failmerica’s embarrassingly dysfunctional colleges and universities

    an infrastructure-building initiative what looks to the private sector for input as to how to allocate pending, not to failmerican piggy piggy bureaucrats

    exposure and redress of the corrupt pernicious and extremely wasteful climate change fraud

    the appointment of a genuine conservative justice to the supreme court what can temper harvardtrash pervert John Roberts’s more obscene constitutional defilements

    depoliticization and reform of failmerica’s corrupt intelligence agencies

    health care for veterans (instead of buying art work while the sick and neglected soldiers die in the gutters and streets like mangy third whirl puppy dogs)

    the gutting of obama’s prosperity-raping, anti-american legacy, and the decontamination of everything he’s touched

    ooh look some fox news bimbo plagiarized some crap five years ago

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  80. oops how to allocate *spending* i mean

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  81. Very astute, pikachu, you had your macchiato todayv

    narciso (d1f714)

  82. thank you Mr. narciso oh my goodness i took the trash out this morning and by the time i got back to my door my poor little ungloved hands were burning with cold

    it was 5 degrees then we’ve warmed up a bit since to 13

    I love it don’t get me wrong

    but no coffee run for me this morning

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  83. Well we make our own, only when I was in dc i couldn’t wrangle one, its a high bat he has set for himself.

    narciso (d1f714)

  84. i put my nespresso machine away except for the frother

    i need to get my smile pretty for in case of i want to interview for a new job

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  85. It can’t be considered plagarism because it takes a village to write a book and you cannot own the language that the government gifted you. After all, you wouldn’t know how to read and write without government schools. So it’s all community owned.

    See. It works.

    If you’re a leftist.

    NJRob (43d957)

  86. Bow f chuck ‘gibsoned’ much of kellyanne’s interview, her one minute and santelli’s was the only thing salvageable.

    narciso (d1f714)

  87. Birthday, happy to me! Lived through two millennia, two centuries, six decades, and five years, i have! Old I am, tired in need of rest. Soon will I rest, yes, forever sleep. Earned it I have. Twilight is upon me, soon night must fall.

    Yoda (310909)

  88. one could fill one’s entire days simply exploring the terrain of what is possible to imagine now that was wholly impossible to imagine mere weeks ago

    Your list is what Mike Lee and Ted Cruz have been talking about for years. Good for Trump if he wants to plagiarize them.

    DRJ (15874d)

  89. Fare thee well good friends! May the Force be with you! There is another sky…………………………… hghhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…….

    Yoda (310909)

  90. well minus the bathroom tranny fixation the unhealthy obsession with other people’s fetuses and the Kim Davis hate agenda

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  91. Back to your espresso machine, mololchs minions is part of the reason they are so eager fir folks from south of the border

    narciso (d1f714)

  92. not even go back to the coffee machine

    it’s time to celebrate the discrediting of the petty and weird social con agenda

    the fact that these weirdo issues aren’t front and center as Mr. Trump assembles his government is a powerful testament to his seriousness of purpose

    c’mon people now smile on your brother everybody get together try and love one another right now

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  93. True, Trump wants no part of religion.

    DRJ (15874d)


    happyfeet (28a91b)

  95. Birthday having, Yoda is. Happy birthday you to! [YouTube – musical accompanyment, appropriate it is]

    papertiger (c8116c)

  96. Eleanor Clift? Well, it’s time for some Turtles then…

    She got a thing about her
    Don’t even have to wear fur
    Dems really want you Eleanor hear me
    Your thoughts intoxicate them
    Advocate more tax and spend
    And there’s more like you Eleanor really

    Eleanor gee they think you’re swell
    Even though you’ve aged like hell
    You’re their pride and joy et cetera
    Eleanor think back to teh days
    Clinton knee pads were teh craze
    And you wore them no regret…ah

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  97. ironically it very well could come to pass that Mr. Trump’s lack of alignment with the silly social con issues might help some of them advance more better than they would if he were identified with them

    look at the Planned Parenthood funding issue

    National Soros Radio is very confuzzled about how to attack – Mr. Trump’s done an adroit triangulate to where the Rs in Congress are the weirdo fetus-obsessed radicals and he’s the perspicacious and reasonable one – how can NPR do the attack fake news propaganda on the congress Rs without helping their nemesis Mr. Trump?

    they’re definitely thrown off balance here:

    3. Republicans aren’t quite sure Donald Trump is on their side.

    Republicans lawmakers are confident in their effort, because for the first time in a decade, there will be a Republican in the White House. But Donald Trump has a mixed record on Planned Parenthood. During the campaign, he praised the organization for doing “very good work” for “millions of women.” But he’s also supported cutting off federal funding.

    That said, Trump’s political inner circle is very much in favor defunding the organization. Vice President-elect Pence, for example, is a long-time leader in this effort with zero ambiguity in his record. He offered legislation to this effect when he was in the House. Speaker Ryan is also personally very much in favor of defunding Planned Parenthood. But Ivanka Trump may be the person to watch. She has been a moderating force for her father on many women’s issues.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  98. You forgot

    7. Call it “fake news” because you wish it weren’t true.

    8. Insert smug non-sequitur about Hillary being projected to win the election, thus “proving” that anything you disagree with is, ipso facto, false. Ignore the fact that Hillary Clinton actually *did* win the popular vote by more than 2% (because you’re sure, on the basis of zero evidence, that all 3 million of those votes were illegals in California).

    Dave (711345)

  99. stinkypig clinton will never be president cause she has pig diseases and she farts too much

    that said she’s also a nasty person inside, where it counts

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  100. Plagiarism isn’t a crime. It’s more akin to a etiquette lapse. (Farting in church. Picking your nose in the waiting room.)
    So a six years after the fact reporting doesn’t qualify even as fake news. It might be fake olds if I were bestirred enough to look past it’s contemptible and corrupt source.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  101. #97 Colonel,

    Eleanor Clift, picks up the rice
    In the church where a wedding has been
    Lives in a dream world
    Waits at the window, wearing the face
    That she keeps for television appearances
    Who is it for?

    All the liberal people
    Where do they all come from?
    All the liberal people
    Why are they such idiots?

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  102. Democrats have thus far been unable to move past their disappointment at having their dreams of political dominance dashed on the rocks and their profound strategic miscalculations.

    All this hand-wringing by Democrats and their media colluders is just another example of attempts to undermine and de-legitimize an incoming, DULY ELECTED president. EFF them and anyone who helps them, however obtuse that assistance appears on the surface.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  103. 102… Good Show!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  104. #99 Dave

    You forgot
    There’s no such thing as a “popular vote” for President.
    So you can take your dreams of mob rule and go have a sad.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  105. This was fun. It is interesting to see how closely the parody comments meld into the non-parody (such as those by swc and papertiger). The whole thing has been a sort of meta performance art extravaganza. We’ll have to do this again.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  106. For a change of pace how about a cab ride through Mr. Porche’s model train layout. [YouTube]
    The camera puts you in the driver’s seat.
    The thing is so detailed and immersive that when you finally come around a bend and get a look at the person running the train he seems like a 2000 ft tall human.

    Good break from politics. Try it.

    That’s pretty cool. I’ll probably revisit it a few minutes at a time, as watching the whole thing at once is hard. When is the part where you see the human? I tried to scroll through and did not see it.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  107. speaking of change of pace the gorden grobes are on tonight

    i’ll not be watching me personally

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  108. Have never watched it in the past and will not tonight. And almost certainly never will.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  109. yes yes yes the whole award show thing is kind of exhausted as a genre I think

    but they’re still important cause of the social justice


    happyfeet (28a91b)

  110. Yoda asked me to post the following:( at this time it is difficult, but must do it for him)

    These were his last words, “I love you my son!”

    “Twilight is upon me and night is falling. That is the way of things … the way of the Force.”

    “I have fought the good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith!”


    Yoda jr.

    Yoda, no longer with us he is, merged with the Force at his own little hut!

    “Death is a natural part of life. Rejoice for those around you who transform into the Force. Mourn them do not. Miss them do not. Attachment leads to jealously. The shadow of greed, that is.”

    P.S.: Sitting here now and contemplating what further to say. Sadness is upon me. Yoda really did enjoy coming to this site to read the hosts and other’s comments. At times he couldn’t due to health problems, and missed a lot of the older commenters. Two I can recall were JD and Dustin what happened to them? Others he mentioned, but can’t recall their handles at this time. DRJ he mentioned coming back not long ago, always loved her concise and well reasoned comments and articles that she once posted.

    PPS: Disclosure; I helped him by typing his last comments, discussed it we had, and told me what to say. A biting wit and stinging humor, he always had. Must go now, the conveyance has arrived to transport what was once him away! Oh! One last thing, I can’t remember what news reporter said this, but convert it for Yoda I will!

    This is Yoda commenting from Dagobah, Good night and good luck!

    Yoda jr (310909)

  111. who else is dead is George Michael Lucille Ball Kurt Cobain and Akbar Rafsanjani

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  112. papertiger (c8116c) — 1/7/2017 @ 11:34 pm

    Thanks, I enjoyed it.

    That’s pretty cool. I’ll probably revisit it a few minutes at a time, as watching the whole thing at once is hard. When is the part where you see the human? I tried to scroll through and did not see it.
    Patterico (115b1f) — 1/8/2017 @ 11:45 am

    The giant appears at 16:33.

    felipe (023cc9)

  113. Instant Fan here, have a look. A buddy in Carlsbad, CA says this will lessen the sting of losing the Chargers…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  114. Give plagiarism a chance. You must view Crowley’s book as a decent, but obvious third-off mix cassette. Justce Sotomayor is nothing but a secretary, I heard, so let dutiful notation be accepted for everyone, not just Latinas, as a indicator for wisdom.

    The Golden Gropes still have the circle table setup that facilitates drinking just like at a lot of more enjoyable plebian ceremonies.

    urbanleftbehind (847a06)

  115. Nicholas Brendon’s first wife was from Carlsbad

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  116. Kabuki theater is the correct assessment:

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  117. There are 2 worthwhile parts of the GG — 1) if Ricky Gervais is hosting and he insults everyone and everything connected to the show, and 2) by the time they get to the last 5-6 awards, pretty much everyone is drunk and you never know what one of them will say when they win.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  118. Thanks for the kind words, Patterico and DRJ.

    I liked DRJ’s effort.

    This is a variant on the ideological Turing Test, and certainly invokes Poe’s Law. Good times.

    (And, obviously, by this I mean: You know who else falsely criticized someone for plagiarism? Hitler.)

    JRM (de6363)

  119. Yoda Jr.,

    Our commenter Yoda was always a wonderful performance artist here, and your comment is in that spirit. If your comment means that Yoda is no more, I’m very sorry for your loss and I thank you for informing us.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  120. #118 shipwreckedcrew, Jimmy Fallon will be hosting tonight.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  121. omg i totally missed that

    that’s very sad Mr. Yoda was a good pickle

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  122. Yodaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  123. Yoda Jr. @ 111 — I completely looked past the import in scanning your post.

    Thoughts and prayers with you and your family. I enjoyed Yoda here.


    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  124. That Yoda desired to impart a final message to us via his son is truly touching. He was indeed a valuable commenter here, and we’ll miss his sagacity.

    JVW (6e49ce)

  125. i’m so glad you caught that Mr. P that would’ve been terrible

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  126. Thank you, Yoda Jr. Yoda is already missed.

    felipe (023cc9)

  127. Sorry to hear, young padawan.

    narciso (d1f714)

  128. Once upon a time, on deadline at CBS, I caught a freelancer trying to turn in material to be used on a TV project to be marketed nationwide. He’d lifted a passage, word for word, from a book which, by luck or chance, I happened to have in my lower desk drawer for reference. It was small- but blatant plagiarism none the less.

    I was furious, given the time constraints we were under. I was also young, righteous, full of piss and vinegar, and truly disappointed in the freelancer knowing his capabilities. And of course once CBS paid for it, they’d own any up front problems associated with it.

    In confronting him, knowing his chances for future assignments through me were evaporating before his eyes, he sheepishly admitted he not only didn’t pen the piece, but had ‘sub-contracted’ it to a friend because of his workload and planned to split the fee but didn’t know his fellow scribe had swiped the text from the book. Some friend. And if so busy why take the assignment in the first place? Money, of course. This was New York City in the mid 1980’s. When Reaganomics was a smokin’ and ethics were a burnin’. You know: Trump Times.

    My response was no fee and no more work assigned through me. He insisted he be paid all the same pleading it was not his fault but that of the secret subcontractor– the ‘ghostwriter.’

    I refused to sign off on it. So I passed the paperwork to my boss face to face with the details involved. He listened, nodded in complete agreement, then signed off on the chit to pay him off over my objections. He left it up to me whether to use the freelancer again or not, reminding me as I left his office that we had much bigger problems to deal with.

    If it were on my desk, I’d jettison Crowley immediately. But as Monica knows all too well, as in the Reagan days, she’s likely safe, thanks to the boss, as we have much bigger problems to deal with.

    On the other hand, back in the day, we had an aging, tenured philosophy professor in college close to retirement who would weigh papers and gauge grades by ounces accordingly. Hungover frat bros, late to deadline, sometimes inserted the typed text of the U.S. Constitution in the middle of their papers. And they got away with it until he retired.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  129. I am so sorry for your loss, Yoda Jr. Your father was a beloved commenter here, and he added something everytime he commented. We may not have known each other in real life but he will be missed. I am touched that he wanted to say goodbye, and it tells me he felt the same bond to people here that I feel. Bless you and your family.

    DRJ (15874d)

  130. May Yoda’s light shine eternally. Rest. You will be missed.

    NJRob (43d957)

  131. Yoda jr., my father kicked me. He was sorry as soon as he did it. I knew it, he knew it. He was my father.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  132. Yoda Jr. – so sorry for your loss. I would venture to say that Yoda was one of the few commenters here who was universally liked. That says something about the man. Thank you for passing the message along to us, and we pass our affection and sympathy along to you.

    Leviticus (70ca80)

  133. Thank you all for your kind words. I have sent a lengthy email to Pat explaining how Yoda came to be and of his passing. No longer exiled to Dagobah he is! He has my permission to use it for an update if he wishes to.

    Yoda jr (310909)

  134. Here is what Yoda Jr. sent me about his dad. It’s a little complicated: Yoda Jr. used to comment as peedoffamerican and then briefly as Yoda years ago, but then his dad moved in and took over the Yoda account, and Yoda Jr. allowed his dad to become Yoda. Yoda recently passed on. Here is Jr.’s email:

    I am the “original” Yoda. Shortly after I had changed from peedoffamerican to Yoda a few years back, he moved in. Discovered me one day at your blog and wondered what I was doing! He read your blog and liked it very much and was very much a jokester. Came home after work one evening, opened up your blog, and found that “I” had been commenting on your blog. Started to bitch out loud about it, and was going to email about someone impersonating me when I saw the look on his face! It was one of pure delight! I sort of “retired” from commenting (even as peedoffamerican since that’s the email I use for blogging), and just read it instead. His personality just took over and gave him great pleasure in imitating my converted style. You might say “he” became my ghostwriter! So, you might say that he became the “real” Yoda!

    So yes, Yoda is gone. We knew this was coming, and adjusted to the idea. It was irony that a post on ghosting came up here as it became his time to leave. I will continue to read your blog, and will miss seeing what the “real” Yoda had written for me. I think I will post as Yoda jr. on occasion when I have time instead of peedoffamerican in honor of him! You may post this response if you want to in order to explain to the other commenters how he sort of became “me” on your site, and the kicks he got out of doing it w/o anyone the wiser. Heh! He even included bitching about some of my health problems here too, as they were shared by us both.

    And the above explains why Yoda has not been seen here for the past few months, while I managed to throw in a comment or two as peeoffamerican. I just could not post as him since he took over as Yoda so well.


    Patterico (115b1f)

  135. It’s about 13 degrees in Green Bay.
    Did I just see Aaron Rodgers without gloves on?

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  136. I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.

    First the princess, and now Yoda.

    We had four inches of rain today. No sign of it letting up.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  137. Forgot the song.

    Who’ll stop the rain? [YouTube – musical accompaniment]

    papertiger (c8116c)

  138. In the modern era everyone is a plagiarist. That aside, I always found Monica a bit of a lightweight.

    G Joubert (e29e84)

  139. #139 G Joubert, wut?
    Monica’s not a lightweight.
    She has big hair and big teeth, so perhaps you see her as a bimbo, but that woman’s sharp as a tack. Nixon took her under his wing. She’s a foreign policy expert, and John Batchelor has long had her on his Wednesday night radio show for an hour at a time.
    She’s got a PhD.

    Cruz Supporter (102c9a)

  140. Now is there a sources section in the book, either individual notes of
    Thematic notes. It was a paperback collection of jottings, not a historical text like that of goodwin or pearlstein.

    narciso (d1f714)

  141. I think the final word on Crowley has to be, “At this point, what difference does it make???”

    Tom Servo (4f4685)

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