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Georgia10 asked this morning on the front page, "Do you know Ben Domenech?" Well, I do know Ben Domenech. He is a friendly, intelligent, personable and witty guy. This may come as a surprise to those who don't know anything about him but for the information they've read over the past two days. He's a guy you'd play poker with every week. I know, because that's how I met him. For over a year I played in a regular poker game that Ben also frequented. These days the game has dwindled to once every month or so, but we still meet over cards and chips and beer and have a good time. In fact, I saw him this past Sunday.

Domenech and I don't agree on a lot of things, perhaps even most things. Some of what he's written in the past on his blog I disagree with vehemently. The politicians he's worked for I disagree with vehemently. The authors he works for I disagree with vehemently. Though we agree on very little politically, this diary isn't about our disagreement about ideas. We handle that by being able to carry forth a conversation about our views of the world without resorting to name calling and insults.

Contrast that with the tone of the comments I've seen here and around the blogosphere about Ben, by people who surely haven't met him is sad. It's petty, it's despicable, and readers here should be above the sort of crap that gets spouted in threads like Georgia10's, where my friend is called "smarmy dickhead," "asshole-kid-moron," "tending-towards-the-moronic," and perhaps worst of all, attacks on his mother.

I know Ben Domenech, and no matter how you feel about what he writes or the conservative ideals he values, he doesn't deserve the personal attacks being spewed forth here by those who haven't met him. Rip apart his record in the blogosphere, disagree with things he's written and the people he works for, but enough with the name-calling and personal attacks.

Originally posted to acaben on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:52 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Ben who? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fabooj, mrblifil, SpecialEFX, Lepanto
    why anyone cares is beyond me

    "No human race is superior; no religious faith is inferior.
    All collective judgments are wrong. Only racists make them."
    ---Elie Wiesel<

    by bleargh on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:51:41 AM PST

  •  Ben who? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, librarianman, 313to212, Lepanto
    I can't wait until next week when all the free publicity has died down

    "No human race is superior; no religious faith is inferior.
    All collective judgments are wrong. Only racists make them."
    ---Elie Wiesel<

    by bleargh on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:52:20 AM PST

  •  Tell your friend Ben (13+ / 0-)

    That only a complete scumbag would have defamed Coretta Scott King the way he did.

    Actions speak louder than words - and both Domenech's words and his actions are appalling. When he conducts himself responsibly, focuses on fact, and stops casting wide aspersions by inciting racism, he'll be worthy of my respect.

    And not before.

  •  Anyone who spews hate-speech like Ben's... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil

    deserves to be insulted personally.

  •  Sad is your post. (5+ / 0-)

    You are obviously a whiney ass titty baby that doesn't mind hanging out with racist scum.

    and:

    "He's a guy you'd play poker with every week."

    No I wouldn't.

  •  karma (17+ / 0-)

    karma is a bitch aint it?  You spew shit out into the universe it comes back to ya pretty quick.

    Maybe you should tell that to your lil friend over the next poker game and while you are at it, ask him why his ass isn't over in Iraq fighting the "good war".

    Personally just because you can overlook your friend being a bigotted idiot dickhead, don't expect the rest of the world to follow.

  •  Hi Ben! (5+ / 0-)

    Hiding behind the identity of a supposed friend?

  •  Tell him to read Georgia's post (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MissAnneThrope, Fabian

    he may learn a thing or two

  •  Sooo... (8+ / 0-)

    We can judge him by his personal stands, written on public forums and his vehement support of despicable people.. bt we can't attack his "character"? Just what do your opinions adn actions represent? Hair color?

  •  I've never met Michael Weiner (27+ / 0-)

    but I refer to him as "that rotten-toothed bigot";

    I've never met Rush Limbaugh, but I call him "that drug-abusing, cowardly hypocrite";

    I've never met Bill O'Reilly, but he's a "pathologically lying turd" in my book.

    And had I the misfortune of one day discovering that one of the guys in my monthly poker game reportedly called Coretta Scott King a communist on the day of her funeral, and that this guy was also starting as a columnist who will no doubt be crapping all over public discourse with the latest GOP talking points, delusional pro-war rhetoric and Stalinist personality cult fawning about Bush, I'd find another poker game.

  •  i'm sure he may be a great guy (31+ / 0-)

    to play poker with and have a beer with.

    I've always made a distinction between the political and personal.  I completely agree about the attacks on his mother being inappropriate.  However, I have to point out that Ben himself didn't hold himself to a higher standard. He called the members of this site "unhinged" and "motivated by partisan rage."  He implies we're stupid when he writes that "smart Democrats" should reject us.

    Personally, he may be a great guy. Politically? The guy needs to be called out on his bullshit.

    tracking the domestic spying scandal here.

    by Georgia Logothetis on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:58:07 AM PST

    •  disagree (6+ / 0-)

      I soooo disagree with this good guy personally, dickhead publically persona, its a cop out. If you are a dickhead, you are a dickhead.

      Its like the old copout, don't take it personally it is only business.  That too is bullshit, business effects all of us PERSONALLY.

      So please with all due respect, don't cover for an idiot.

      •  Right... (0+ / 0-)

         Just because someone can put on a socially acceptable face some or most of the time doesn't mean that regular reprehensible behavior shouldn't be called by the appropriate name.

         Thieves and murders are usually nice to their family, but we still call them thieves and murders. Mussolini could be charming, but he was still just a charismatic two-bit thug.

         Ben Domenech is a plagiarist, an asshole, and yet another in a long recent line of over-privileged Republican whiners. There seems to be a mind-set that the 'rules of life' are for everybody else and it's just not fair that they be applied to the new breed of Republican.

         And speaking of plagiarists, Ben's "departure statement" is managing to make Jayson Blair look good in comparison.

    •  I agree! (4+ / 0-)

      I agree. And I'm all for it! Hell, I've been known to do some calling out myself during poker games. :) I urge anyone who disagrees with him to argue, loudly even, about the substance of his ideas. Debating ideas is, I think, the best way to celebrate the freedom of speech we all share.

      I wasn't responding or attacking you for your post this morning, Georgia...I hope you didn't take it personally. I was just responding to some of the comments found in the thread.

      •  Debate (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Annalize5

        Debate an idiot? nah ignore the idiot is the way to go.

        He is at best is an juvenile know nothing kid which at the baby age of 24 can and should be expected, at worst he is another fake partisan shock infotainer like Coulter.  

        Either way he isn't worth reading and/or debating.

      •  Debate on a blog that doesn't allow comments? (3+ / 0-)

        Fuck him. Fuck the WaPo. And Fuck the WATB!

        Paging Doctor Dean.

        by ABBinMI on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:42:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Well (8+ / 0-)

        I am not sure what your complaint is then.

        Some other folks are being too personal?

        Well, shit happens.

        Do me a favor and look at what Ben and his GOP friends have written about me and then I'll listen to you.

        Seriously, this diary is way off the mark.

      •  I know him, too. (4+ / 0-)

        But he goes by another name here in the Deep South.  We've been friends since 1981.  Our circle of college pals, now email friends, spread around the country and around the world (from time-to-time) can't tell how much he really believes the neo-fascist tripe he spews, and how much he just goes overboard to get reactions.

        In the end, if he called at 2:00 a.m. and was in trouble of some sort, I'd be there; and he for me.  But we went through a lot together, over the years.

        And, in the end, if he set up a blog and spewed hate on it (he wouldn't, but if he did...), and Kosniacs or whoever called "bullshit" on him or even, in some cases, threw epithets at him, I'd probably say to him:  "Hey, if you can't stand the heat, then stop throwing gas on the fire."

        I certainly wouldn't jump on Kosnovarians for piling opprobrium on him, were he to spew hate on the nets (again, he wouldn't).

        Is "your Ben" thick-skinned, or another chickenhawk?  I mean, as a (presumably) able-bodied 24 year old who supports Bush's War, what's he doing playing poker on Sunday nights with likes of you, instead of walking point with some squad in Fallujah?  Oh, that's right, he's a cowardly hypocrite.  My email's letsbengoshiATyahoo
        He's free to drop me a line any time if he'd like to discuss this  GOP-Coward - to - Man.

        BenGoshi
        _________________________________________________

        We're working on many levels here. Ken Kesey

        by BenGoshi on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 02:00:22 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I know him, too. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        rockhound, Earl, Ex Con, Nightprowlkitty

        But he goes by another name here in the Deep South.  We've been friends since 1981.  Our circle of college pals, now email friends, spread around the country and around the world (from time-to-time) can't tell how much he really believes the neo-fascist tripe he spews, and how much he just goes overboard to get reactions.

        In the end, if he called at 2:00 a.m. and was in trouble of some sort, I'd be there; and he for me.  But we went through a lot together, over the years.

        And, in the end, if he set up a blog and spewed hate on it (he wouldn't, but if he did...), and Kosniacs or whoever called "bullshit" on him or even, in some cases, threw epithets at him, I'd probably say to him:  "Hey, if you can't stand the heat, then stop throwing gas on the fire."

        I certainly wouldn't jump on Kosnovarians for piling opprobrium on him, were he to spew hate on the nets (again, he wouldn't).

        Is "your Ben" thick-skinned, or another chickenhawk?  I mean, as a (presumably) able-bodied 24 year old who supports Bush's War, what's he doing playing poker on Sunday nights with likes of you, instead of walking point with some squad in Fallujah?  Oh, that's right, he's a cowardly hypocrite.  My email's letsbengoshiATyahoo
        He's free to drop me a line any time if he'd like to discuss this  GOP-Coward - to - Man.

        BenGoshi
        _________________________________________________

        We're working on many levels here. Ken Kesey

        by BenGoshi on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 02:01:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That is disingenuous ... (0+ / 0-)

        From the posts I've read by him, Domenech says nothing of substance -- debating ideas requires ideas to debate.  I conclude he is one of two things -- either he has jumped on the neocon bandwagon and really believes what he is saying or he is being opportunistic and is doing it for the money and notoriety (though of course the two need not be mutually exclusive).  The kind of rhetoric Domenech puts out is not something that can be discussed, it's propaganda plain and simple.  That speaks to character.  It is not surprising, then, that his character is being attacked.

    •  The Political, The Personal, The Persona (5+ / 0-)

      The reason you can separate the political from the personal is that people aren't always pushing their politics into personal interactions. I'm sure Ben doesn't speak in an inflammatory manner when he's playing poker.

      What acaben is saying is that we wouldn't call BD a 'smarmy dickhead,' at least not within earshot, if we knew the guy. Since we don't, we should shut up.

      Well, we're not saying anything to poker-world Ben. We're calling the persona that takes credit for his blogging a 'smarmy dickhead'.

      If BD can keep his persona distinct from his personality, so can the rest of us, and I would suggest, so can acaben.

      "So let me get this straight- they believe in Social Darwinism, but not um, actual Darwinism??"

      by bonobo on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:17:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  And attacking his mother is fine (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      acaben

      Really, this is a day that the Kos community should not be proud of.

  •  Sorry bud (6+ / 0-)

    But your friend Ben doesn't deserve to be treated with the utmost respect when his redstate.com postings follow along these lines:

    Now we all know the boundaries of personal attacks  By: Augustine  

    But I've just gotta say it: Dan Froomkin is without question a lying weasel-faced Democrat shill.

    "I will not rest until every year families gather to spend December 25th together at Osama's homo-abortion-pot-and-commie-jizzporium." - Jon Stewart

    by Slim Tyranny on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:59:16 AM PST

    •  That one was amusing (0+ / 0-)

      Because Ben was hired on to "balance" Froomkin.

      Liberal: "I still think it's a respectable word. Its root is "liber," the Latin word for "free," and isn't that what we are all about?"--Mary McGrory

      by mini mum on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:19:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Exactly balanced (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        exNYinTX

        since Ben is a lying weasel-faced Republican shill.

        Of course, Froomkin isn't a lying weasel-faced Democrat shill, but I volunteer to start the WAPO "Blue America" blog and play the part of the lying weasel-faced Democratic shill.

        "I will not rest until every year families gather to spend December 25th together at Osama's homo-abortion-pot-and-commie-jizzporium." - Jon Stewart

        by Slim Tyranny on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:47:59 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That's the part that fries me. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        exNYinTX

        Ben's is the only blog on Wa Po that is openly, unabashedly political.

        He's not charged with reporting anything or covering a beat, as it were (which is Froomkin's job, by the way...and would be no matter who was in the White House...)

        It's the very thing that Accuracy in the Media was railing against the networks for:

        putting right wing pundits up against "so called left wing" journalists.  Pundits are not held to the same intellectual standard as journalists.  So you've got a debate between professional bullshitters and professional fact gatherers.

        And guess who wins in this society?  Not the folks listening to the exchange...

        My eyes will never gaze upon his sorry excuse for a blog.  

  •  Hmm (17+ / 0-)

    I don't know ...

    I guess I have not read a lot of the outrageous stuff.  But I think the following is fair to point out:

    1. He probably ain't qualified for this job.  What kind of 24-year old gets a job -- any job -- writing an opinion column for the Washington Post, even if it's just the online edition?  He must be a heckuva journalist.  Except that he's not.  He's not a journalist.  He's the son of a Bush White House staffer and he's a junior Republican Party operative.  If that is enough to get a prestige job like his Washington Post position, things are pretty sad at the paper.
    1. He's first columns have been outrageous and inflammatory.  He's supposed to be a "balance" to "liberals" in the online edition of the Washington Post.  Fabulous.  But there are no liberals at the Washington Post.  There are moderates and the center-left (Dionne, Froomkin) but no tried and true Blue liberals.  His idea of balance is to be an outrageous, far, far, far right-winger and craven Bush sycophant.  To some degree, he is inviting the sort of harsh, imflammatory personal criticism that you cite.
    1. No, I would not play poker with him, not if his character is in line with the kind of stuff he writes.  If it's not -- is he writing satire?  Rhetoric for rhetoric's sake?  Tell me.  At any rate, if he truly does not believe what he writes, I have to wonder why the Post is paying him for this job.

    That's all.

    "We need a war to show 'em that we can do it whenever we say we need a war." -- Fischerspooner

    by bink on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 11:59:53 AM PST

  •  Dude read your friends writings before you post (5+ / 0-)

    Because your "nice guy" poker buddy has a history of writing some hateful shit. If you are familiar with his work and you still defend him then I suspect you have some serious issues to deal with.

  •  Do you know Ben Stein? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    exNYinTX, mrblifil, MissAnneThrope

    Because it would be as relevant as this. so fucking what? You're actually giving us the "You'd like to have a beer with Bush (no I wouldn't) line? What does it have to do with the racist, disingenuous, party-steeped, addled and twisted shit that the fuck writes?

    You didn't do it.

    by Earl on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:06:48 PM PST

  •  Maybe if you stuck to poker and video games, (8+ / 0-)

    your buddy Ben wouldn't be the worst person in the world (so long as you can wilfully ignore the harsh indictment of his character which is evidenced by his own vicious, racist, lying writing, e.g. every quote pulled from his work as Augustine).

    And even then, his videogaming devolves into bizarro political theory, as I diaried here regarding his theory of "Contra 3 Syndrome."  If a chickenhawk plays military videogames, does he earn an honorary flight suit?

    Seriously, I choose my friends based, in part, on their character.  I would not be proud to be friends with such a hateful bigot.

    "I will not rest until every year families gather to spend December 25th together at Osama's homo-abortion-pot-and-commie-jizzporium." - Jon Stewart

    by Slim Tyranny on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:08:51 PM PST

  •  Are you a bigot, too? n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil
  •  ack (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    acaben, exNYinTX, bam101, katier

    some of the posters here are exactly what the diarist is talking about.

    and before anyone jumps on me i'm black and gay, so shush.

  •  If Ben (6+ / 0-)

    wouldn't write as if being a Democrat was something akin to treason then perhaps we would give him a chance.  My opinion of Ben has to do with what he has written, things like making statements that a majority of Americans are "red state" folks (when they aren't), stating that Americans "reject" the policies of Democrats (they don't, Americans did however reject Bush's Social Security idea, are rejecting the new medicare bill, and are rejecting our involvement in Iraq).

    If "Ben" was a bit more reasonable and posted thoughts that didn't come from GOP talking points maybe we would give him a chance.   As it is he is just another winger who has no original thought.

  •  Fuck him (22+ / 0-)

    He sits around here, playing poker while reservists twice his age are coming home limbless, while he pontificates about a war, when his only military training is watching Red Dawn?  Goddam, I just want to kick the crap out of that cowardly little piece of shit punk.

    Maynard G Muskievote

    by calipygian on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:22:30 PM PST

    •  And not only that (10+ / 0-)

      but he has the fucking Gonads to sell crap that glorify Marine snipers when he wont enlist himself?  A real Marine sniper would jam a .50 cal sniper rifle so far up his ass, he would taste cleaning grease.

      Maynard G Muskievote

      by calipygian on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:23:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Acaben (0+ / 0-)

        you need to address views like the ones expressed above. If you feel the need to come to your "friend's" assistance, step up to the plate and take on these very salient arguments.

        •  What's to address? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Annalize5

          Calipygian holds a view I tend to agree with. I wish more yellow elephants and chickenhawks and fighting 101st keyboardists would step up and enlist.

          What I don't agree with are personal attacks on a friend. Criticize his ideas? Sure. I've been known to. Criticize something he wrote? Hell, there was a time when he defended himself against the box turtle line from the CONSERVATIVES at the poker game.

          My diary didn't say "hands off my friend." I didn't come to his assistance because I'm trying to protect him from criticism. My diary was about those who have nothing to add to the debate but childish insults and name calling, many of whom now seem to have turned their sights on me.

          •  You 'tend' to agree with (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            exNYinTX, Annalize5

            Which parts of it do you not agree with, and why do you have to be hounded into taking on this very legitimate avenue of criticism. If childish insults and name calling offend you, then please describe why you haven't voiced your displeasure about those issues with your "friend," who seems to revel in precisely the rhetorical practices you claim to despise?

            •  Lemme Repeat for you, to see if that helps... (0+ / 0-)

              Domenech and I don't agree on a lot of things, perhaps even most things. Some of what he's written in the past on his blog I disagree with vehemently. The politicians he's worked for I disagree with vehemently. The authors he works for I disagree with vehemently. Though we agree on very little politically, this diary isn't about our disagreement about ideas.

              •  Lemme point out (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                exNYinTX, MissAnneThrope, thingamabob

                you staggering level of cognitive dissonance. The diary is about the gap between his pubic persona and his private writings, some of them under the cover of anonymity, which one might argue represents the true nature of his unedited thought process.

                Stating that you "disagree about ideas" doesn't cut it. It's not like the argument is about finding common ground regarding wallpaper color. Your situation is not too far from the following hypothetical: Don't call my friend, who is a holocaust denier, mean names because he is a hell of a raconteur at the poker table and I have never yet known him to subject an infant to "shaken baby syndrome." And I'm almost not joking.

                By the way, the pissy way in which you call attention to having to "repeat" yourself, is tantamount to calling me stupid, which isn't a very high-toned thing to do now, is it. And if you respond by saying "you started it," I have some proverbs to quote you.

                •  Cognitive Dissonance (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  mrblifil

                  Yah, baby!

                  I mean, if you really don't like what Ben says and stands for, exactly why would you bother to "stand up" for him in the first place? I don't think anyone put a gun to his head to force him to write crap for the WaPo, did they?

                  (As a matter of fact, it's more likely that they put a gun to WaPo's heads and made them pay Ben an ungodly sum of money for the crap he has thus far produced.)

                  (Here's one last little parlour game for you: next time you're playing a friendly game of poker, glance over to see if he's bluffing. At the same time, remember that he thinks you're beliefs are treasonous, and that people you identify with are scum, and racism is wholesome and natural. But make sure you keep your poker face!)

                  -8.38, -4.97 "...there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Hamlet, Act II, Scene ii.

                  by thingamabob on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 03:44:36 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Sorry (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                exNYinTX

                But your friend is an asshole.

                That Marine Sniper cup is beyond the fucking pale. He's not a serving or ex-Marine, where the fuck does he get the balls to sell such a thing. He didn't earn  that right. There are real people in Iraq risking their lives and he's making money off of them.

                Oh yeah, your boy's the worst kind of racist.

                So fuck him, and fuck you for defending him.

    •  WATB (8+ / 0-)

      He really does epitomize the tough-talking white guy hiding under his bed, doesn't he? By saying he's a nice, likable guy in real life reinforces what a whiny-ass titty baby he really is. Put him in front of a keyboard and he unleashes putrescence and bile. Actually make eye contact and he turns into a timid creature. He should be serving our country in the armed forces if he believes in Bush and the war, he's prime fighting age. Instead he's willing to let others sacrifice for his comfortable life.

      GOP: Party before Country
      Puppethead

      by puppethead on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:29:15 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  He just wants to (0+ / 0-)

      but he's not going to. It just feels good to say it.

      You didn't do it.

      by Earl on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:30:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  In that case, (2+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    AlyoshaKaramazov, mrblifil
    Hidden by:
    Fabian

    tell your buddy that I think he's a fucking tool and a cowardly little bitch.

  •  One more thing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fumie, TiaRachel, anonymousredvest18

    he's now a public person and, as such, he's going to be called all kinds of name. He, and you, better get used to it because there is nothing you can do about it. Even Sandra Day O'Connor (Ben is not even close to being anything like her) got called a c-u-n-t on these pages not long ago.

  •  Believe it or not (5+ / 0-)

    Stalin was said to have been "an absolute laugh-riot" at parties once the vodka started flowing. Too bad none of those millions he purged got to really know him, huh?

    But, please, look in the mirror--what kind of person accepts the "friendship" of someone he/she vehemently opposes on most issues? It's not unethical (depending on which issues you disagree on), but it's highly suspect.

    -8.38, -4.97 "...there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Hamlet, Act II, Scene ii.

    by thingamabob on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:34:56 PM PST

  •  quality of a person (8+ / 0-)

    So you're buddies with this guy?

    Your "friend" deserves each and every attack on his family, character, intellect and beliefs that he gets, because that's what he's been spewing forth towards me, and people like me, for years.

    May I humbly suggest you find a better class of friend.  The people you choose to associate with are a reflection of what you are.

  •  Ridiculous (8+ / 0-)

    And the tone of his comments about the Left?

    Seriously, you have to be kidding me.

    •  Good Point.... (2+ / 2-)
      Recommended by:
      rick, Chamonix
      Hidden by:
      Eternal Hope, mrblifil

      Two wrongs do always make a right. I wasn't even homeschooled and learned that.  :)

      •  No seriously (7+ / 0-)

        Ben and the Right have no room to complain.

        When he apologizes for his statements then we can talk.

        Now I have not written a word about his new gig, but this handwringing is absurd.

        You watch him go - he'll offend you many times over before it is done.

        So really come on.

        I happen to be good friends with his co-founders at Red State, Krempasky and revino, and I vouch for thier personal qualities. Indeed, they tryhard to stick to the facts.

        But I'll be damned if I get all offended when someone takes a shot at them, we choose to write on blogs. This is part of the territory.

        •  The Poker Game (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bam101

          I know this is just inviting more critical comments, but the poker game is at the home of one of the two guys you mention as redstate founders...

          I'm not defending his words here. I'm not defending any of the stuff that has spewed forth from Ben's keyboard. I'm not defending those who write substantive comments or criticize things that he has said or believes.

          But I will not back down from arguing against the personal attacks and name calling that I called out in this diary. It's abhorrent behaviour whether it happens here at Daily Kos or whether the very person I'm defending against it has engaged in it himself.

          Hell, there are times when I've gotten so emotional that I've made personal attacks against others, and I think it's just as abhorrent when I do it.

          •  Oh, really? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            MissAnneThrope, TiaRachel, Earl, Annalize5

            You're not defending his words? By asking us to consider your "friend" on personal terms, you are attempting to sway the way we regard his views, whether that's your intention or not. Because honestly, who gives a shit about how you or I or anyone comport themselves at a fucking poker game.

            The guy is a war apologist. That outrages people, especially those drawn to this board. If you don't get why that would lead to personal attacks, when the stakes are so unbelievably high, with violent death and chaos becoming a permanent backdrop in our lives, then you are either feigning ignorance, or you really haven't given your central thesis a lick of thought. In which case, with all due respect, you should delete this diary. It's an embarrasment to you.

          •  So he's the kind of guy (0+ / 0-)

             Who has no problem with publicly trashing the guys he plays poker with?
             Let's look at the difference between you two.  You're both poker-playin' buddies, but, when the chips are down:
             1) You defend him
             2) He assaults you (or at least people like you)

             Do you sense a little imbalance here?  A little metaphorical imbalance maybe?  Don't you think this whole poker game could be a nice cozy fairy tale about the dysfunctional relationship between the Republican and Democratic parties?

          •  Your argument would carry more weight (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            suzq, Annalize5, Nightprowlkitty

            if you were not defending a prime abuser of your ethic.

            Turn the other cheek don't cut it for me.

          •  'Personal Attacks' (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            exNYinTX, rockhound

            You've got a point.

            I mean, he certainly wouldn't personally attack someone like, hmmmm, let me think, Coretta Scott King.  Nor would he personally attack half (and growing every day, it seems) the U.S. population for its rejection of Bush's war.

            No, all of his attacks principled objections are written without pandering to those who lap up invective or hyperpole as a stray dog would a found piece of roadkill.  And, it would seem, that since he uses only the highest rhetorical devices to make his points, those who would criticize him should likewise keep to the high-road, right?

            As for me, you see, I do take it as a "personal attack" when some blogging 24 year old tells me (42) that I don't know what I'm talking about politically, that I don't love my country, that I'm unpatriotic, that if I don't suck-up to the idiocies of Right Wingism I'm cracked.  That's about as personal an attack as can be made on me.  Calling me a mere "name" (poo-poo head, or worse) is no big deal.  Calling me a traitor (directly, or by innuendo) is fighting words.  This brat needs to understand that.  Perhaps you could help him.

            BenGoshi
            __________________________________________________

            We're working on many levels here. Ken Kesey

            by BenGoshi on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 02:19:45 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Such as what? (0+ / 0-)

            If you think people were so out of line, you need to be more specific as to what you think is out of line.

            Why is it OK for him to launch personal polemics, and for us not to hit back? Would you have advised Muhammed Ali not to fight against Sonny Liston?

  •  Personal attacks (4+ / 0-)

    Is calling Coretta Scott King a communist on the day of her funeral a personal attack? I just want to know?

    The Republican Party: The Bridge to Nowhere

    by flounder on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 12:40:40 PM PST

  •  You mean (5+ / 0-)

    Ben- the intolerant big mouth bigot who called Coretta a commie?(How's it feel aBen to be prejudged and found wanting? :)) From what I know OF him, I wouldn't care to know him. I'd say that anyone who calls a revered public figure a commie deserves the title "smarmy dickhead". That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it. Quite frankly I hope he gets clobbered at the WaPo- a little justice to see a overt bigot have to deal with prejudice firsthand.

  •  Nice fella? maybe. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    calipygian, mrblifil, rockhound, Fabian

    Idiot? Yes.

    History's Greatest Monster By: Augustine
    Ladies and Gentlemen, Jimmy Carter.

    "I was Rambo in the disco. I was shootin' to the beat. When they burned me in effigy. My vacation was complete." Neil Young. Mideast Vacation.

    by Mike S on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 01:03:06 PM PST

    •  And to be clear, (8+ / 0-)

      I have a lot of conservative friends. Most of whom I consider some of the best people I know.

      But every one of them worked for what they have. They have real world experiance and their mom didn't wipe their butts for the first 18 years of their lives. Their Daddy didn't get them an appointment to their job. None of them slandar people who disagree with them.

      I have to laugh when I hear some 24 year old kid who has lived a completely sheltered life attempt to tell me that the ideas mommy pumped into his head are right for the country. Tell the little boy to come see me after he spends months eating top ramin  every day so he can pay his rent.

      This punk is nothing but your typical college Republican.

      "I was Rambo in the disco. I was shootin' to the beat. When they burned me in effigy. My vacation was complete." Neil Young. Mideast Vacation.

      by Mike S on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 01:14:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  So lemme see (5+ / 0-)

    that fact that you've never suffered a slight from him while playing on the other side of the poker table, passing pleasantries, should lead the rest of us to ease up on his offensive views?

    What if it turns up that some other member of the poker club embezzled money? Or date raped someone? Or was giving out blow jobs at the truck stop on the way home? Would any of that information alter your view, or would you be like the neighbors of white collar criminals muttering "such a nice man" as they cart Mr. Johnson, the embezzler, off in handcuffs?

    This diary would have had value if you had written it from the standpoint of how your acquaintance's public persona diverged from your understanding of his private persona. Even then, there's no real evidence you have been exposed to his private persona, everybody is affable at the poker table with a few beers in them, following an unspoken social contract to "keep it light." I don't suppose any of us assumed that Ben shows up at the poker table yammering on about that commie, Coretta Scott King. It's the fact that he makes such outrageous, divisive, scurrilous claims while protected by anonymity that suggests he is not everything he professes to be.

    He's got some issues, he is an awful writer, an awful arguer, and his Dad is up to his neck in Abramoff dealings. He should be fighting his own battles, and your take on the issue reflects poorly on you. The enabler is just as toxic as the addict, from where I sit. You seem to be a classic enabler.

    •  An attempt... (0+ / 0-)

      I'm not sure you can read and comprehend, but I'm going to try this anyway.

      Go back and read the diary. The point wasn't that you should ease up when criticizing my friend's beliefs, writing, ideas, opinions or thoughts.

      The point was that attacking his mother and calling him a smarmy dickhead without engaging in substantive debate about his views and opinions is devoid of any intellectual value at all and only subtracts from the debate.

      •  Smarmy dickhead (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        exNYinTX, mrblifil, Annalize5

        I'm gonna assume you can read and comprehend. The basis for us calling him and believing him a smarmy dickhead is because of his ideas , opinions and thoughts, and writings.

        If he can call Coretta a commie for her ideas, thoughts, writings and opinions, then he can be called a "smarmy dickhead" for his (ain't it great to live in a country where bigots get equal time?) I do draw the line at attacking his mother. Why attack her? There's so much material to dislike this guy for, why even bother wasting my breath on his lineage.

        As for debate, I tend to engage in debate with those that act like they wish to engage in a serious debate. It appears to me what Ben likes to do is namecall. Guess what? I can do that too.

      •  Careful (3+ / 0-)

        I'm not sure you can read and comprehend, but I'm going to try this anyway.

        Sounds like you're dabbling in some of that ad hominem you claim to despise.

        You can't decry the use of "smarmy dickhead" (which is apt, I find) and then turn around and grouse about other people's level of reading comprehension. This response of yours convinces me that you are being less than forthright with the rest of this community. Don't look know but your agenda is poking out from under your fly.

      •  Again, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mrblifil

        you assume there can be substantive debate when all he is doing is writing pre-packaged rhetoric.  There is no debate to be had with that kind of thinking.  I believe there has to be a point where this kind of propaganda is pointed out as just that -- propaganda.  Not serious commentary, not sincerity or true belief.  There is virtually  nothing in his writing that is not a regurgitation of republican talking points.  No, you are mistaken.  And as long as people like Ben, (who have no merit on their own standing or achievement but whose presence fulfills the mistaken "balanced" function the media so mistakenly hews to out of fear of the republican attack machine) are allowed to hold positions of influence, they should be exposed as such, and their character is not just fair game, but an essential point to unmasking their incompetence and lack of merit.

  •  Ha ha!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, Nightprowlkitty

    He was so ashamed of selling Marine Sniper shit he didnt really rate selling, he pulled it from his  Cafe Press site.  For those of you who don't know what I am talking about, see here

    Maynard G Muskievote

    by calipygian on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 01:21:03 PM PST

  •  Domenech deserves whatever he is getting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rockhound, Annalize5

    acaben: he doesn't deserve the personal attacks being spewed forth here by those who haven't met him.

    Had Ben met Coretta Scott King?

    Has Ben been met any of the Kos folks he attacks?

    You may like Domenech, that's your moral choice when your friend says judges are worse than the KKK.

    But don't tell us we shouldn't attack his words, his character, his persona or whatever.  His words tell us as much as you gain from a poker table convo.  

    Even Bush may be personally likeable, lots of dictators and gangsters may be likeable.  That means nothing in the public arena.  A person is what they do and say, as much or more in public as in their home.  

    Your defense isn't a defense.  It does call into question your moral judgement however.  Neither Al Capone or Stalin would be a friend of mine, or someone who I would socialize with if given a choice and I understood their public actions

    "pay any price, bear any burden"

    by JimPortlandOR on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 01:35:45 PM PST

  •  We are (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, Annalize5

    ...the sum of our actions.  His actions have been to attack, criticize, defame, libel and accuse.
    In return, he is being attacked, criticized, defamed, libelled and accused.

    The circle's complete.

    So all I have to say regarding Ben is:

    If you don't want to play in the game, take your ball and go home. If you do, expect the other players to be using the same tactics.

    .

    Actions lie louder than words.

    by Kira April on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 01:47:52 PM PST

  •  Ben might well be terribly cute as he stuffs (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, Annalize5

    pretzels down his cakehole while playing a really nifty hand of poker,
    but he writes shit.

    we're shocked by a naked nipple, but not by naked aggression

    by Lepanto on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 02:13:16 PM PST

  •  Rephrased: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil, Annalize5

    Smarmy creationist dickhead

    The Republican Party: The Bridge to Nowhere

    by flounder on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 02:17:06 PM PST

  •  Nice to stick up for friends. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mrblifil

    Sad when one chooses a dick head for a friend.

    Your buddy puts out a product that hurts your country, that demeans people who have fought for real justice, that defrauds and lies to our citizens.

    You need higher standards for friendship. There's plenty of people who aren't assholes who can play cards.

    I'm the plowman in the valley - with my face full of mud

    by labradog on Wed Mar 22, 2006 at 04:21:56 PM PST

  •  Your friend's career is over (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WIds, AndyT, Heronymous Cowherd

    and you know what?  It never deserved to begin.  For what an honorable guy he supposedly is, he used family connections to accomplish everything in life.  He got into W&M on affirmative action despite both opposing affirmative action and having no connection to his somewhat tenuous Puerto Rican background.  He built up his journalistic portfolio plagarizing movie and tv reviews.  He then got a job at the White House through daddy, a job at the NRO through daddy, founded RedState with a bunch of well connected hacks, and pushed his way onto the Washington Post, where the spotlight shown too brightly and exposed him as a fraud.

    Maybe he's got a good heart - I've never met him.  The construction workers I did day labor with in high school all had good hearts, and none of them are writing for the Washington Post.  None of them are frauds, either.  If you're gonna play the ::shocked, shocked to find out there are people who go overboard posting on political comment boards::, just take your winnings and go home.  It was Ben, not us, who made himself a public figure and subject to public scrutiny, and while that doesn't condone "personal" attacks (the vast majority of attacks here seem to be on Ben's writings and his political integrity), it comes with the territory.  

    After all, Coretta Scott King had a good heart too.

  •  Damn (0+ / 0-)

    There are some great comments on this thread. I've been ROTFLMAO.

    Somewhere a senator sits behind a big wooden desk...he took his money just like all the rest- Neil Young

    by ctami on Fri Mar 24, 2006 at 01:33:21 AM PST

  •  I have gone after him a lot (0+ / 0-)

    Nine of my last eleven posts have been on him (obsessive? I don't think so, it's just hard to keep up on all the crap this guy has pulled, plus it is easy to poke fun at him just like we would with any other right-winger that messed up). I do not feel sorry. He's no better than Bill O'Reilly or Rush Limbaugh in my opinion. No matter how nice he is to play poker with it does not excuse the vitriolic things he writes and all the plagiarism he has done to elevate himself to where he is now.

    I don't think I have been too hard on him. I do think the comments about his mother (though I have not seen him) are out of line. Also, I do not like it when people go overboard on the home-school jokes.

    The fact of the matter remains, however, that he lifted full paragraphs from several sources, not just once, but flagrantly, and is now working for the Washington Post. The reason why the right sees nothing wrong with this is because he shares their right-wing views. No other reason. If he was from the left, first, they'd flip that he was at WaPo, and secondly, they'd be attacking his ethics (plagiarism, racist/bigoted comments, etc.) just as we are.

    Should he be employed by WaPo? No, I don't think so, and this has nothing to do with his politics. I don't care that there is a conservative blogger at WaPo. It is his ethics and bigoted comments that enrage me.

    In addition, Ben is not the best candidate either. In fact, if I was on the right, THIS is not the guy I would want representing my side. Level-headed Republicans and conservatives should be just as upset. To have one of their blogger pioneers with a past like this should embarass all of them.

  •  It sucks when it happens...... (0+ / 0-)

    But when you watch people enter a carreer where there is a high degree of scrutiny and accountability, as many as half the people eventually implode by doing something unbelievably stupid. and it may take years to get their reputation back.

    And when it is a neophyte assuming who assumes that they are smarter than the people in the field they enter, they usually last 6-12 months without producing diddly and get fired.

    it's sad, and very often it is very very surprising who it happens to. I have watched people I admired succumb to alcoholism or get tagged for something ike plagiarism or theft. just like the fellow in the Whitehouse who got arrested for shoplifting. it happens way more often than you think.

    When it personal it's a tragedy, when it professional it is corruption

  •  He's a guy you'd play poker with every week. (0+ / 0-)

    He is a friendly, intelligent, personable and witty guy.

    It may come as a surprise to you, but being a "friendly, personable... guy you'd play poker with...." is not particularly good credentials for a post as political commentator.  I guess I should not be surprised though, since it was apparently the basis of many voters support for Bush.

  •  Thank you acaben (0+ / 0-)

    Everything you said is reasonable. You didn't defend plagiarism, or tell me that it doesn't matter because he's a good guy. You seem to recognize that plagiarism disqualifies a person from writing for the WaPo, but to be a bad person, you have to actually do bad stuff (besides just holding morrally reprehensible political views, for which we decided long ago to forgive our adversaries).

    I tell you truly, whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. -- Matthew 25:40

    by mSnook on Sat Mar 25, 2006 at 04:00:53 PM PST

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