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?