What follows is a comment to the piece, “The Media Can Prevent Mass Murderers From Becoming Famous” by Conor Friedersdorf that remains pending eight hours later. It displays the characteristics of incoherence whenever I jot out something in-between work. It attempted to contrast the free speech allowed those who might give unlimited funds to groups that seek to destroy any gun safety laws and the limits on speech we are encouraged to have in the wake of such massacres. Such limits, I attempt to argue, are impossible; we do not discuss at length these massacres out of tabloid hunger but because it is the only feeble action we might take to anticipate or prevent another such massacre. We research these massacres and their perpetrators, inevitably making the murderers famous, in order to do what little we can, because the government could prevent mass murder…but doesn’t – or rather, is prevented from doing so through vast private lobbying. The ending note is perhaps what caused this post to be pending – I wished to point out the ubiquitousness of misogynistic thinking, and so I quoted what Roger Stone had tweeted about Jill Abramson after she was fired: “DIE BITCH!” This, I thought, had some immediate relevance to this post, since Stone was the manager of the 2012 Gary Johnson campaign on the Libertarian Party ticket and Fridersdorf had endorsed Johnson as the best, most moral choice in that election. We have the further irony that Stone might express such sentiments, those fighting gun control might speak freely i.e. spend vast amounts freely, and yet re-quoting Stone’s statements to show the prevalence of such misogyny is apparently verboten in polite society, a free speech that ultimately must be politely tempered.
The pending comment follows:
Here’s an astonishing contrast – since the Supreme Court ruled that money equals speech, and you cannot restrict speech, you now have nearly no limits that can be spent against those in favor of gun control. We can avoid the “But Soros!” rebuke, because the asymmetry will always favor those against gun control, because those against such controls tend to also be against any regulations on business and for lower or no taxes, so a disproportionate amount of big money donors will always favor those who will bring about fewer laws for guns, and less tax money for mental health. An obvious result is more killings by people who shouldn’t be anywhere near guns in the first place. So, this is the contrast: more free speech for them before the fact, less free speech about the aftereffects.
That there is so much writing about these massacres is not sensationalism. I’m currently making it through this shooter’s manifesto, as many are, because right now attempting to understand what was behind this killer and what small measures can be taken to avoid it the next time – this is our only recourse, since simple personal safety is a luxury not permitted us. We’re going to have to read this killer’s manifesto, and the next one’s, and the next one’s, and the next one’s, and the next one’s, and the next one’s… and study it, and discuss it at length, because when people die for such heinous, disgusting reasons, you are compelled to action: and the most obvious action is not allowed us. It is not allowed us, and Conor Friedersdorf ultimately thinks it righteous that it not be allowed us, because the gun debate is over, no matter how many die: “The U.S. Already Had a Conversation About Guns—and the Pro Side Won”.
We might also offer here a contrast of what’s allowed and what isn’t: access to guns is okay, access to birth control isn’t. For birth control to be part of your insurance plan has nothing to do with having a woman’s body, but liberal intolerance: “A Real Commitment to Minority Rights Needs a Real Commitment to Freedom”. This is what real freedom looks like – you paying extra for your pills because of the vague religious beliefs of your boss (or maybe their cheapness using it as a cover), you cowering in fear under your desk as a man kills your co-workers one by one, because his freedom could not be denied, and the speech that fought for the gun in his hand could not be denied either.
I’ll just end on one note: in the 2012 election, Friedersdorf chastised those who voted for Barack Obama, and explained why he felt the only moral choice was to vote for Gary Johnson in the well-known piece “Why I Refuse To Vote For Barack Obama”. There was no distinction between the policies women might face between Romney and Obama: “The Bipartisan Interest in Making Women Feel Bad”. The man who managed the Johnson campaign was a Nixon administration alumnus, a man named Roger Stone (“Roger Stone’s Steakhouse Politics” by Gabriel Sherman). Never mind that the Johnson campaign might have been an elaborate ploy to split liberal votes (yes, liberal votes on the issues of drug legalization and drones) and that many Johnson supporters had questions about campaign spending (this is dealt with in a long blog post I was heavily involved in, “Roger Stone: Pretty Reckless Is Going Straight To Hell Part Eight”, part of a series on this operative); I will point to a recent tweet by Stone, very much in character: “Jill Abramson reviewed all JFK anniversary book for NY Times she never mentioned mine– which outsold every one she did review- DIE BITCH!” (should it be deleted, here is a screenshot). This was the man who was going to lead us all to a better, more peaceful world. We have to mention these things, we have to bring up all these ugly things, because our chattering class never will, our chattering class doesn’t give a damn about us.
The cited tweet is the following:
Jill Abramson reviewed all JFK anniversary book for NY Times she never mentioned mine– which outsold every one she did review- DIE BITCH!—
Roger Stone (@RogerJStoneJr) May 16, 2014
As said, this is not the sole example of Stone’s intemperance. In a series of tweets, Stone would allege that former President Bill Clinton was a serial rapist: “Bill Clinton is a serial rapists [sic] and Hillary knew all and directed cover-up. Sell that to woman voters.” A writer named Rebecca Jaramillo (@RebeccazWriting) would question the sincerity of this allegation: “It’s YOUR job; you’re the demagoue. EA time you blather, another Warren Dem [Warren Democrat] moves into HRC’s corner. Idiot.” Stone: “Ignorant bitch!” He would follow this up with “Can’t wait for @rebeccawriting to finish her novel which NO ONE will buy. I will buy- to wipe my ass with it. #kunt” And: “You should stop tweeting about politics- you only betray you stupidity- YOU started the name calling- bitch.” Andrew Miller, the stepson of Stone associate Dianne Thorne would tweet out the same message: “You should stop tweeting about politics- you only betray you stupidity- YOU started the name calling- bitch.” Followed by: “@RebeccazWriting is one mouthy, loud-mouthed ignorant cunt”.
The tweet about Jaramillo’s book was deleted by Stone. The following is taken from a screenshot (link):
The Andrew Miller tweets are now deleted. The following are taken from a screenshot (link):
Stone, the man who supposedly ran a 2012 campaign that was touted as a reformist third party initiative which should draw bipartisan support, also had an interesting statement to make about Senator Bernie Sanders, a man known for his passionate criticisms of the national security state and Wall Street cronyism: “Soviet Agent Bernie Saunders, Should be arrested for treason and shot.”
This post is, of course, a brief return to the subject of Roger Stone, who was covered here in a ten-part series: One (devoted to his beginnings in the Nixon administration), Two (the contrast of his libertine life and the hardline social politics of the Reagan administration), Three (the goings-on of his lobby shop Manafort, Black, Stone, and Kelly, including their involvement in Angola and the appearance of their alumni in the fiasco of Iraq, as well as working with a firm that was a front for Pakistan’s intelligence service), Four (voter suppression in 1980 New Jersey and 2000 Florida), Five (the Indian Bureau and gambling licenses), Six (ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein and the 2010 New York election), Seven (fake Tea Partys and the goings-on of Stone associates Dianne Thorne and Timothy Suereth), Eight (the ex-wife Ann Stone and the 2012 election), Nine (the inconsistencies of Stone’s book, The Man Who Killed Kennedy and the unusual on-line persons who share an enthusiasm for this book and a hatred for Eliot Spitzer), Ten (Stone’s work in the Ukrainian election of Volydymr Lytvyn, who may have ordered the killing of the journalist Gyorgy Gongadze).
For the paltry few wondering what has happened to the new content for this site, rather than this small in-betweener, I’m currently working on one post devoted to a movie which I hope to have ready by tomorrow, and another involving a great deal of research that grows vaster and vaster in scope, and which now encompasses the events of four decades. As do many who look into the past of the United States, I am astonished at how many major stories go untold, and how the country’s history is one which is vivid, strange, and seemingly forgotten the next day, leaving it to a few maverick zealots to pick among the bones and find occasional stunning patterns.
ADDENDUM: This comment is no longer pending. It has now been deleted.
* After writing this piece, I remembered that the FBI handles such things for members of congress.
(Some small edits were made to this post on the day after publication, solely for the purposes of clarification. Nothing in terms of its ideas or essential content was changed.)