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   I’ve been covering Breitbart toady John Patrick Frey aka @Patterico for a while now. He is deeply personally invested in the group of fake personas behind the Weinergate smear, banning Big Government contributor Lee Stranahan from his site for failure to toe the line on his defense of the “Reid family”, a group of sock puppets that were debunked by the New York Times.

He’s done some sketchy stuff prior to this including staging a long running defense of James O’Keefe’s illegal wire tapping activities, working with or employing a cyberstalker named Seth Allen, and in general he presents like a behavior problem needing law enforcement attention, despite the fact that he is a Deputy District Attorney in Los Angeles County.

   Patterico and his puppets have tried a variety of tactics to get me off them, but they’ve only succeeded in making me smile. The world needs a little levity, so you can get a humorous lesson in how to (roughly) handle a smear fabricator by looking past the inscrutable squiggle of additional content.

 First, a little history. Some back benchers from the right wing smear team, lead by discredited dullard @GregWHoward came after me last fall. Howard, a virtual gun waving alleged former Marine with an apparent history of disability fraud, working in conjunction with internet crazy person @SwiftRead, concocted a mighty conspiracy theory: Twittergate.

   And they promptly got handed their asses by the beandog militia.

   It was all good fun, but the lessons learned were: never publish a customer’s name, make sure an innocuous DBA pays the rent and utilities on the house, and get someone to aggressively examine your digital shadow so you can clean up any exposure for friends and family. I was pretty mad about this stuff when it happened, but in retrospect it’s been a blessing – I’m old enough to have a smallpox shot mark on my arm, and Twittergate was the digital equivalent of a killed virus vaccine.

   Fast forward to Weinergate. I know everything Breitbart does is bullshit, so I landed on that stuff with both feet. I was pretty disappointed in Weiner when I found out he actually did have some culpability, but I was not at all upset about having waded into the defensive effort. Instead I got quiet, and started walking the back trails of the perpetrators. That’s an interesting story itself, and I’ll post links in the tip jar for those who are just tuning in to this story.

  Having looked at how it was done I had a pretty good sense of the skills and resources they had available to deal with me. There haven’t really been any surprises, but it is instructive and entertaining to have a look at them fumbling around trying to deal with someone who wants to play.

   First, they dug up the old junk from Twittergate and tried to make it go. Gets a lot of play in the wingnutosphere, I’m famous there, but in the real world … not so much. A real journalist would contact me, I show them the Gawker article, and that’s that.

  Next, they notice that I’ve published some stuff with the word Anonthropology in the title, and I’m working with Anonymiss on the Weinergate forensics. I must be a hacker, which I am, but I’m a lot closer to Seth Bullock than Jesse James, so their frantic effort to get law enforcement after me fell flat. I did finally get one fairly despondent Sony security guy nosing around, but I made friends with him pretty quickly and that’s that.

  Since that didn’t work, they’ll get hackers after me! One of the new sock puppets created in an attempt to intimidate me, @PeterPavel1, a sort of anemic script kiddie larva, goes running to @th3j35t3r, a group that has focused on jihadi sites overseas. That doesn’t produce, so then it starts talking to @LulzSec and @AnonymousIRC. Again, no luck – Anonymous is not your personal army.

  There has also been a lot of sniveling aimed at @markos about my writing here; everyone from Tommy Christopher of Mediaite, who got punked by the fake Reid family, to this little pipsqueak @PeterPavel1 have gotten into the act. We all know how that’s going to turn out, especially when Breitbart people are the source of it all 

  So I came to this pre-smeared and thusly inoculated, they can whine to the FBI all they want, the bureau has real work to do, personal army requests to the various hacking superpowers have fallen on deaf ears, and Markos just ignores them. The only card they have left, threatening a libel suit, is also comical. Can I get a show of hands here – how many attorneys would like a shot at Breitbart? The discovery maneuvers will be the stuff of legend 

   I think they’ve pretty well exhausted their limited range of abilities and I’m not at all impressed with the overall effort. However I am puzzled at the careless way that they just did a cannonball into the shark tank after I’ve already bloodied them. You want to get the attention of hackers, Patterico? Lemme give you a hand …

   SO, let’s see, in the last year this cluster of right wing actors have … created fake personas … dropped dox on people … spoofed phone numbers … intruded into computers … created deceptively edited videos. Fair game for any of those hacking superpowers that they made the mistake of engaging.

   And here is why that was a perilous move:

  Breitbart’s Big Government, where Patterico is a contributor, is nothing but the same sort of trouble we see with News Corp. Deception, intrusion, and intimidation when caught are the order of the day for them. They do this on behalf of the neo-fascist American right.

   One of the politicians supported by this group is Mike Rogers, the Congressman from Michigan’s 8th District. This guy has an interesting past, quitting his job with the FBI just six months short of vesting. Curious, eh?

   Rogers was John Boehner’s choice to head the House Permanent Select Intelligence Committee. They’re supposed to be doing stuff like watching over the NSA so they don’t waste a billion dollars on a three million dollar problem and get all up in our civil liberties while also failing to stop the 9/11 attack. Instead, Rogers crows about this oversight (after the fact) committee’s work to find and kill bin Laden – more pure fabrication – finding him is President Obama’s success.

  And it’s not just bin Laden that Rogers wants dead; he’s publicly called for the execution of Bradley Manning.

   So while Anonymiss and I are busy figuring out how to get these guys matching sets of handcuffs, they go out and make fools of themselves trying to get the boys to attack us on behalf of a political faction that’s calling for the execution of a man that parts of Anonymous are determined to free?

  Who here would like to offer a prediction as to how this set of maneuvers will turn out for Mr. Frey? And will the wrath flow back and hit @AndrewBreitbart, getting Big Government torn to shreds by an aroused hive just like The Sun was?

Originally posted to Stranded Wind on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 01:01 PM PDT.

Also republished by InfoWar and Anonymous Dkos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  may an unknowable wind... (4+ / 0-)

    blow them away.

  •  Even though Weiner f*cked up... (11+ / 0-)

    I still hold Breitbart and his wrecking crew in contempt. They've baselessly slandered far too many good people, from ACORN workers to Shirley Sherrod, and they don't deserve any sort of "credibility" just because their chicanery led to the revelation of Anthony Weiner's dirty laundry.

    Thanks for your great work. Keep it up.

    •  don't liek (5+ / 0-)

       don't liek Breitbart, easy to find fault, their fabrications incite violence and endanger us all.

    •  They tried to play Catch a Predator w/ AW (6+ / 0-)

      The plan was to entrap him with some fake Twitter teens. Fortunately AW did not fall for that. But it was an elaborate plan begun sometime last fall, with several players operating teen sockpuppets, fake parents of fake teens, along with the mysterious "Dan Wolfe" there to hype the whole thing, and who still has not been identified. They really hoped to catch AW in not just virtual cheating but an actual crime. Didn't work, and the cover up has been quite bizarre.

       Someone coordinated this, and as Pat Frey has been spinning madly since the fakes were exposed by the NYT, I'm convinced SW is correct, Pat is the puppetmaster who set out last fall to destroy AW. Pat crowed "this is the best day ever" when AW photos were released by Pats boss Breitbart. Maybe he felt his hard work finally paid off, in one way or another.

       Since NYT Jen Preston exposed the fakes, Pat has been leading his followers on a sniper hunt in search of the "real" puppetmaster. It's so transparent I'm amazed they continue to fall for it. All hell's going to break out at his site when they finally realize they've been had. Pat's been desperately pointing fingers at everyone in the vicinity, and alienating former colleagues like Stranahan who ventured to close to the truth.

       As for the actual, adult sextmates, I believe they were RW hires as well. Those photos were turned over to Breitbart the same day Megan Broussard received them. Whether Pat had a hand in coordinating that as well I don't know.

      Bottom line is this was an elaborate sting operation. What I'd really like to know is, who financed it?

      •  "snipe hunt" (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KenBee, PeterHug, Stranded Wind

        Clumsy thumb typing...

      •  It's outright bizarre (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PeterHug, Stranded Wind, stef

        Watching the whole Patterico/Stranahan thing, because Stranahan is directly employed by Breitbart.

        •  Stranahan wasn't in on it (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Stranded Wind

          Stranahan got caught up in solving the mystery of the socks and veered too near the truth. Pat has been attempting to discredit him ever since. Formerly colleagues and friends,  they now publicly call each liars on Twitter. One of them is correct in that assessment, and it's not Pat.

      •  elaborate sting operation? (0+ / 0-)

        To sting whom?

        You create fake teens to trick the congressman you despise into engaging in bad behavior?

        And then what?  Who publishes this without ever seeing the real teens?  NYT won't do that, as they've proven.

        So who was the sting targeting?  It was targeting whatever media operation would be stupid enough to publish the story that Weiner was engaging in objectionable behavior with teen girls online, when the teens didn't really exist.  To quote you, "Fortunately, AW did not fall for that."

        But think through the sting.  If AW had taken the jailbait and sent the photos or engaged in dirty talk with the "teen" fans, what happens next?  How do you sting the congressman for having fake sex with fake teens?

        Well, let's think:  Who habitually publishes irresponsible sting operations targeting left wing centers of power (ACORN, NPR, etc.)  We all know who.  

        The target of the sting was The Bigs.  Breitbart & Loesch.  They're the ones who are irresponsible enough ("scum of the earth" as someone else called them here) to go with such a scandalous and fake story.   And before the story blew up with the inadvertent photo tweet that Weiner made to Cordova, the story was being peddled to ...guess who?  The Bigs.

        Mission: Bring down The Bigs & Inoculate Weiner from his own behavior by making his detractors look like idiots.

        (Remember, no one expected Weiner to slip up with that photo tweet.)  Only after that accident did the fake teens peddle the story to the very liberal Tommy Christopher at   And only then it was to prove that the interaction with the teen was completely innocent and fully sanctioned by, and under the watchful eyes of, her doting parents, who were big fans of Rep. Weiner.  Post-accident Revised Mission:  Show Weiner to be upstanding in his interactions with teen fans online.  Family rallies to Weiner's defense. Attempt to show that Breitbart was working behind the scenes to try to wrongly sting Weiner.

        But if Weiner had never sent that photo to Cordova, and if this is an elaborate scam operation, where was the story to go next?  Was the evidence going to make it through NYT scrutiny? Through Brian Ross at ABC News?  No.  It was going to blow up on the pages of, maybe mentioned on Fox News...and then NYT or Brian Ross would expose it as a fake scam. Making fools out of Breitbart, Loesch, Fox News or whoever was stupid enough to publish it.  


        •  reaching (0+ / 0-)

           I think you're really reaching with this interpretation.

            The simplest explanations are best - someone wanted Weiner, and this was the path they chose to get him.

        •  Nice try. They didn't need the fake teens anymore. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Stranded Wind

          The fake teens were a liability, as they were fake. Their creator didn't want to be discovered. So the fake teens' handler cough*Pat*cough tried to take them off the table with the the pro-AW cover story, plus the threats by the fake mom to sue anyone who pursued that line. Which worked, for a while.

          It was only after AW refused to resign that they were brought forward again, to insinuate he had improper conduct with underage girls, which he did not.

          Tommy Christopher will be very pissed when he realizes who did that to him.

          •  what's that? (0+ / 0-)
            It was only after AW refused to resign that they were brought forward again, to insinuate he had improper conduct with underage girls, which he did not.

            Tommy Christopher will be very pissed when he realizes who did that to him.

            When's this, when the Nikki contacted Tommy Christopher?  If Nikki (or Nikki's handler, as you say) wanted to insinuate that Weiner had improper conduct with underage girls, [thanks for reminding us that he didn't]

            1) Why did s/he go to liberal Tommy Christopher?
            2) Why was there no insinuation of this by Nikki & her mom to Tommy? (in fact it was the opposite)
            3) Why did Tommy instead write the article that exonerates Weiner from such conduct?

            All of this was before Weiner resigned.  

            Only after Weiner resigned were they "brought forward again" as you say, by "Nikki's Dad"  who also didn't insinuate that Weiner was misbehaving with his daughter.

            So when were they brought forward again to insinuate?

            •  Go read Pat's blog posts from that time. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Stranded Wind

              Pat ramped up the underage allegations when it became clear AW wasn't ready to resign, right after he announced he was not hacked.

              You are right about the Tommy Christopher stuff. At that time, Pat wanted to dispose of the teen socks, so he made them liberals who would sue anyone who named them. Then AW didn't resign, so more pressure was needed and out they came again. Look at Pats posts btw the day AW announced he wasn't hacked and the day he resigned.

              •  "Out they came again" (0+ / 0-)

                Where did they come out?  Did Pat have his girls contact himself?  I don't see the girls ever "coming out" as you said.

                The info related to "Betty & Veronica" was all:

                1) In Mediaite
                2) What anyone else could find by searching Google or Yahoo archives of twitter activity.
                3) Analysis of 1 & 2 by bloggers & commenters

                I don't recall any other direct reporting where a person other than Tommy Christopher (and Gennette Cordova, if she ever commented on any of this during that time period) claimed to have contact with Nikki.

                I see articles in which Pat pokes holes in Tommy Christopher's logic & Aaron Worthing comments on Cordova's evolving story.  Turns out Pat was right about those holes.

                Are there links to allegations or to the girls coming out that I must have missed?

                •  See Pat's "Ethel" posts linked below. (0+ / 0-)

                  Betty/Nikki is quoted. False insinuations made re Ethel.

                  Follow the timeline.

                  May 27 AW tweets, says he was hacked. Teen sting no longer needed, starchild vanishes.

                  June 2 DMs from Mariaenela to Mike Stack published here at DK. Fake teens are no longer needed and handler doesn't want people looking at than, so June 3 Mediaite story claims they are liberals and warns they will sue.

                   June 6 AW admits he lied about hack, Breitbart publishes photos. Now it seems he must resign.

                  When he doesn't resign, Pat revives underage allegations, including quoting Nikki tweets, on June 9. Seems he is willing to risk calling attention to Nikki to pressure AW.

                  AW then does resign, and only after that arr fake teens revealed as fake by NYT.

            •  Link to article (0+ / 0-)

              Pat's "Ethel" posts, his claim to fame. Fake teens referenced as if they are real, "Ethel" allegations later proved by cops to be unfounded. Posted after Tommy article but before resignation, June 9.


              •  Thanks for the link (0+ / 0-)
                "Fake teens referenced as if they are real"

                Yes everyone thought they were real at that time, including Mediaite, which said that they had checked out as real people, & posts here at Kos.

                Again the tweets are real related to Ethel, who is a real teen.  She was engaged in repeatedly stating her love for Weiner and also for some naughty tweeting.  That was all possibly suggestive that Weiner may have been, given his habits, involved in the other side of naughty conversations or flirting.  So people were wondering what messages were out there that might implicate Weiner.  By people I mean lots and lots of people on that date, except for pro-Weiner journos who didn't want to find more info.

                Ethel quoted Weiner as having sent her a message that was very similar to one he used with his dirty-talking GF Lisa.  

                When the same tweets were reported in NYT, Mail UK & other papers, the "sh*t" and "Large, in charge" parts were selectively not included by the reporters.  A congressman apparently said "sh*t" to a real girl, according to her, but it wasn't reported, even when that congressman was in public disgrace.  Though I can understand that some people may have sensed the end was near for him already and that too much focus on the real Ethel just wasn't necessary.  Major media only found Tommy's reporting on Betty, etc., to be relevant once it was found to be errant and that whoever was behind those girls was, according to NYT, apparently out to sting Weiner.  No consideration was given to the most simple thinking through of the premise: you can't bring down a US congressman for talking to fake teens.  So if someone created the teens, they weren't thinking of meaningfully stinging the congressman.  Because it never would have worked.  People, especially Weiner, would have demanded to verify the teens, even if it was in private by the FBI.  And it would have been revealed as a scam, bolstering Weiner and making anyone who was against him or who had propagated such a theory look incredibly stupid & phenomenally, evilly partisan.  And that was the plan: tease a lurid tale to media that's stupid & biased enough to post obviously fake scams against progressive seats of power.  And then humiliate the same irresponsible media outlets once the girls were revealed to be entirely fake.

                Follow up article to one linked above:
                Weinergate: Ethel’s “Honey Mustard” Tweet Related to Boyfriend? Plus, Further Damning Details in that NYT Piece

                •  How's that LE investigation going? (0+ / 0-)

                  This double-reverse-triple-backflip-Democrats-entrapped AW in order to get BREITBART story is delightfull. I think you should run that by LE. Pat did report all of this to LE, correct? What's the status of the investigation?

                  •  Not double reverse anything.... (0+ / 0-)

                    You guys asked for simple.  

                    A fake girl who wouldn't & didn't fool anyone (remember, she didn't fool a 21-year-old college woman, nor the randy Rep from NYC, nor Mrs. Preston, nor her researcher, Ron, according to them (all the smart people...and I guess she didn't fool Breitbart & Loesch either, according to Tommy) was never much of a sting threat, was she? (But you insist that was her plan, further asserting it was Pat's plan.)

                    In fact, she only fooled Tommy Christopher, his boss, Mr. Hall, 16-year-old Ethel & the smitten stripper. (I suppose  they're all technicallly someone, but none of them is going to pass an FBI employment exam, ever.)

                    So she didn't & couldn't  fool anyone important.. Therefore the theory that her sock master's plan was to take down a congressman with this lousy attempt isn't simple, it's wishful thinking with no chance of working.  So maybe stupid enough for Lee Stranahan's theory of the angry ex-girlfriend who doesn't think things through, but Pat?  If Pat were involved in a stupid scheme like this (as you describe it), he'd have thought about it for 3 minutes before starting, and chosen a different scheme.

                    So your idea of simple only possibly fits with the young, psycho-angry ex-girlfriend theory. Only she would hatch such a hopeless plot.  Surely Pat is a lot smarter than that, even if you never agree with him about anything.

                    Oh, and I guess she had Pat & Stranahan and a mess of others fooled for a bit, based solely on the alleged verification that Tommy Christopher risked his reputation on. But we have to be able to trust when reporters swear that they know something is true & verified (dear Tommy did say that), I suppose.

                    But maybe next time, not so much when the only ones who've contacted Deep Throat are the now-famous Mediaite investigative team of Chrisopher & Hall.

                    As for LE (Law Enforcement), I'm with you.  I'd like to know and so would you and others.  

                    Pat says it's being worked on.  Stranahan does too.

                    Neither has said of late which LE is working or what part they're working on.

                    Stranahan has said that BPD told him that it does not believe that any threats were really made to the woman who filed the report.  He seems to have said that that case is closed.

                    •  Oh yes, Pat is way too smart for that. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Stranded Wind

                      Pat is a freaking genius, no way would he create an O'Keefeian plan to sting a Congressman, he is just too darn smart for that. When LE comes around asking questions that's what you should tell them.

  •  Your diaries are (5+ / 0-)

    a pleasure to read...

    Confusion to the enemy...

    -6.25 -7.08 The glass is neither half-full nor half-empty. The glass is just twice as large as it needs to be.

    by Unit Zero on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 02:32:23 PM PDT

  •  Thanks. Breitbart is scum of the earth. n/t (6+ / 0-)

    Dream, that's the thing to do (Johnny Mercer)

    by plankbob on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 02:34:43 PM PDT

  •  Free Bradley Manning! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stranded Wind


    Democracy is the most fundamental revolutionary principle. Information is the ultimate key.

    by Radical def on Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 08:15:58 PM PDT

  •  Pat tweets his defense. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stranded Wind, Lisa Lockwood

    Says he's falsely accused of posting at Big Government. Truth is, he mostly stopped posting there last fall, just as the Nikki sock campaign was gearing up.

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