Friends, the great majority of you who read me here on PolitiZoom, probably met me first on Daily Kos. I’ve been posting both places, since PolitiZoom was founded March 1, 2018. I will no longer be posting on Daily Kos, because at 10:00 a.m. today the ban hammer fell and I am persona non grata over there.
I’m not going to go into a lengthy defense of what I did or didn’t do wrong. Years ago I read the aphorism, “the argumentative defense of any proposition is inversely proportionate to the amount of truth contained therein.” That translates as, if the defense is complicated, it’s probably bullshit. I don’t have a complicated defense. My defense is this: there is a difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law, and on that basis I was forced out.
In fairness, so you can get some context, this is briefly what happened:
In November, 2018 I posted a cartoon with a diary that was controversial. It depicted Elizabeth Warren scalping Trump. I was asked to take the image down, and I would have done so, but for the fact that I posted the piece early morning and I went back to sleep. When I got back on line, I was timed out for two weeks. That was a legitimate time out. I concede that totally. No foul on Daily Kos’ part at that point.
The next thing I heard from management was a warning about “cropping a watermark.” I don’t even know what that is or how to do that. I inquired further and I got an angry reply — and still the issue of how one goes about cropping a watermark was not addressed. So, I wrote back an email saying that the angry tone saddened me and I would endeavor to do better in the future.
Now here’s where it gets dicey. The next time out was in January. This was because I alleged in a headline that Jerry Falwell owns the computer company that Michael Cohen paid $50K to, to fabricate false polling results showing Trump ahead. I got a two week time out for that, being told that I was “wrecking the credibility of the site by publishing fake news” — or words to that effect.
Now I believe that Falwell DOES in fact own that company. I’ve done some research on it and won’t bore you with the details at this time, but I have made inquiry with reporters at two websites who are up on this story, and I will write on this matter conclusively, later. I can’t dig up all the facts all at once. Point being, that this was not the first time somebody had put up a false statement in a headline at Daily Kos. Just a few weeks ago, Bob Johnson published a piece on Jussie Smollett, saying he was faking his attack. At that time, that was a supposition on Johnson’s part, he did not know it. But he didn’t get rebuked for a headline that was technically fake news at that time. It turned out later that he was right, and I believe that it will turn out later that I am right, too, about Falwell, but that’s not the point. The point is, I was under extreme scrutiny and somebody was looking to find fault with me — and when you look for fault, you’ll generally find it.
This last time out, late on Friday, March 1, was totally bogus. There was a problem with a tweet of Roger Stone’s. The minute it was called to my attention that it was on a closed Twitter account, I did two updates, and changed the headline, i.e., a retraction. That’s not good enough, apparently. Prompt retractions are standard journalistic procedure last I knew. But this is not the first time that my knowledge of journalistic procedure has been challenged. I was also accused of plagiarism at one point, which is nonsense, because the words I used were IN QUOTES! I pointed that out, crickets.
What I will say Daily Kos did totally wrong, was last Friday when the final time out was posted, I got no notice of it and no explanation. I found out about it from a friend who emailed me. I deserved notice and an explanation, like everybody else. This part was not handled professionally at all.
So, clearly, I did something to piss somebody in power off. That is nothing short of tragic because nobody, but no body ever loved Daily Kos more than I do. People who know my story, know that I’ve had egregious health problems the past few years. I came to the site very sick, and started lurking when I realized Trump would get the nomination. After the election, I became thoroughly dedicated to taking Trump down and getting America back, and I wrote many passionate, heartfelt pieces. A lot of these pieces ended up getting reblogged all over the internet, in very respectable sites like Bill Moyers’ PBS site, Alternet, once on Crooks & Liars. I will be eternally grateful to Daily Kos for giving me a platform that allowed my work to be read and subsequently shared by so many.
Nobody but nobody is more on the side of Daily Kos and the work it does than I am, and I will continue that work over here, with your help. When I saw the skull and crossbones under my name, I burst into tears and sobbed uncontrollably for about an hour. Then I pulled myself together to write this piece.
I sincerely regret any errors that I made, and I honestly don’t feel that this punishment fits any “crime” that was done. I reached out in a good faith effort to communicate with management when I was accused of plagiarism and cropping a watermark and the reply was hostility. Perhaps they had already decided what the end result would be, and didn’t want to iron things out with me. I can only speculate.
What I can say, conclusively, and this is not speculation, is that this site you’re on now, PolitiZoom, is apparently perceived as a threat to Daily Kos. Maymebarth, who posts on this site occasionally, and posts on our sister site, Daily Sound and Fury, has also been bojoed. A Daily Kos user named “thetrumpimpeachment” whose blog was The Trump Impeachment, which then became Daily Sound and Fury, has been bojoed. I just found out these facts a half hour ago, because the topic of bojo is in the air. I have no idea why these users were banned, your guess is as good as mine.
So little PolitiZoom, which is to Daily Kos what an amoeba is to an elephant is a threat, evidently. This is such a wrong, wrong perception on the part of Daily Kos management, I swear by all that is holy. We are all decent, ethical people here, passionately concerned democrats. Murf and durrati and myself have serious health problems and posting on PolitiZoom gets us a few bucks for groceries and small bills. That’s what is really going on here. That’s all. I swear to God. There is no plot to harm Daily Kos, and never has been, on anybody’s part. I got into this, and got Murf and durrati into it, so that we could monetize our passion, political blogging, a little. That’s it.
To add insult to injury, I had a full hip replacement five weeks ago and I had emergency oral surgery on Friday, the date of the last time out, for a root canal. The tooth literally exploded in a geyser of pus, when I was in the chair.
I so deeply regret that this matter took this turn and I was unable to stop it. Again, any kossack friends reading this, I loved being a part of the Daily Kos community more than I have loved any community in my entire life, with the possible exception of high school. I was very happy, indeed, at Daily Kos.
But the silver lining is, I’m here at PolitiZoom and I will continue to rally the Democrats here and fight the good fight. Any DK friends reading this post, this is where to find me. I’m not going anywhere. I’m still a staunch Democrat and my commitment to our cause is still passionate and 100%. And I am not anti-Daily Kos. I’m sure they won’t reinstate me, they never do, but I bear no ill will or rancor, whatsoever. I’ll miss my friends, and on that basis, I hope you’ll join me over here, or on Twitter.
One last thought: as we go towards the 2020 election, which is the most profound election in the entire history of the Republic, it behooves us to stress unity above all things. This is not a time for Democrats to be eating other Democrats. I have said it before, and I will say it again, our purity issues in this party are going to render us extinct. Mine is a “powerful and persuasive voice,” according to the very management who just banned me. Yes, it is, in favor of the only cause in America which means anything right now, and that is taking back our government before democracy circles the drain. But the decision was made to still this voice — which they can, on their site. Not on my site, and not on Twitter, and we’ll see where it goes from here. I.Am.Still.In.The.Fight.
To paraphrase Douglas Adams, “So long, and thanks for all the recs.”
My friends, join me here on PolitiZoom. I’ll be here 24/7, 365 days a year. We never close.
Now, enough of this bullshit, let’s get back to work and get rid of Trump.