So in one reality we have a standard-issue right-wing character assassination piece against a liberal activist few liberals had actually heard of — think Van Jones, redux — that has grown into a much larger campaign accusing him, without evidence, of serious crimes, all because of his long-forgotten past. In the other version, an untrustworthy huckster who’s insinuated himself into a certain circle of liberal activism panics when conservatives highlight his disturbing criminal past and put his current position in jeopardy, and he responds with a campaign of shameless legal intimidation — and, perhaps, certain allies of his go even further. Your tribal political sympathies — or your opinion of the people involved on each side – may determine on which side you fall, though no one involved seems capable of telling the whole truth.
Naturally, Alex is above such tribalisms.
Let's consider Alex's own reporting on this matter. In the paragraph above, we see that he is suggesting that Kimberlin is the victim of garden-variety "right-wing character assassination," because some people consider it a little likely that convicted domestic terrorist and perjurer Kimberlin's associates were behind the SWATting, though the question whether such a character, pre-suicided to most, can be further assassinated. Nowhere in his article does Pareene bother to note that Kimberlin himself claimed to have been the victim of a SWATting, even though there's no police record of such an event having taken place. Pareene apparently believes that it was likely a matter of pure happenstance that Ron Brynaert had contrived a reason to be on the phone with Patterico at the time the police arrived at his house, guns drawn, handcuffed him and put him in a squad, while rousting his family from their sleep shortly after midnight a little over a year ago, now.
Nowhere in Pareene's story is there anything, for example, about
Chuck Schumer* Carl Levin going to the floor of the Senate to read into the record a defense of Brett Kimberlin's free speech rights, whether or not the allegations against Dan Quayle were true. Then, it was a matter of principle that even a convicted felon should be free of reprisal for his political speech (leaving aside the truth issue), whereas according to Kimberlin anyone who is telling the truth about his criminal history is guilty of attempting to incite violence against him. In court, Kimberlin has held, contrary to any introduced evidence, that he received a secret pardon under seal for having been railroaded with regards to the bombings for which he was convicted. One of his victims, Vietnam veteran Carl DeLong, committed suicide after his devastating disfigurement and the continual pain he experienced from one of Kimberlin's bombs, which many believe Kimberlin set in order to draw attention from the hit-job murder of the woman who took into a kind of protective custody a granddaughter toward whom the drug-dealing Kimberlin had taken a shine and with whom he was travelling out of state when the girl was a pre-teen.
Because of his violent past, Kimberlin's warnings to employers tend to take on the character of veiled threats, and as part of his advocacy both for himself and against the online right, Kimberlin has caused various people to be forced out of their jobs by employers who wish to keep their other employees safe from the kind of violence they rightly or wrongly assume might accompany a call from a notorious domestic terrorist. This is mere fiddle-faddle and poppycock to Pareene, and the kind of thing that happens when bloggers quarrel. Kimberlin has received millions in donations to his supposedly charitable tax-exempt organizations, permitting him to practice lawfare against his enemies, who happen to include anyone who blogs unsympathetically about Kimberlin. So there's a little carnage for exercising your rights to expression online, so what? If a convicted domestic terrorist tells your wife he knows where you live, you shouldn't overreact by moving, even if you've got six kids. And if a convicted domestic terrorist who runs two 501(c) tax-exempt organizations supported by donations for all the charity that they perform tries to put you in jail on false charges, as Kimberlin did to Aaron Worthing, that's just the nature of the game, you know. It doesn't make it a story.
And if a semi-retired jurist tries to impose prior restraint on your writings, though legal precedent clearly indicates he should not, there's no harm, no foul, because after all this is a non-story. How do we know it is a non-story? Because Alex Pareene of Salon has pronounced it so, just as Rachel Maddow has pronounced Fast and Furious a non-story on several occasions.
Did Brett Kimberlin employ Neal Rauhauser, who makes his daily bread providing "online persona management" services? Meh, who cares? And who cares if Neal Rauhauser, who works for convicted domestic terrorist and perjurer Brett Kimberlin also manages online personae for current Democrat pols. A guy's got to make a living, unless he attracts the enmity of Brett Kimberlin and associates, you know. And if such a guy thinks maybe one of his "beandog" followers was responsible for one of the SWATtings, that doesn't establish any kind of connection between Kimberlin and the SWATtings, though posting an article on Kimberlin that is then reported to his Google alerts should, according to Kimberlin, constitute stalking on the part of the poster. If some court finds it so, that's really not a big deal, and certainly not the kind of sweeping free speech issue that these crazy wingnuts wish to make it out to be: these aren't important writers at Salon; we're talking bloggers, here.
Let's not focus on the question why some lefties have chosen to make a pet of such a creature, but why some righties are so up in arms about its behavior. Because that's really weird.
Rather than consider any of this matter important, Alex Pareene believes you'll be a lot happier sticking your head up your ass, just as he has. Because, really, what's the big deal here? It's not as though any important writers at Salon have been inconvenienced by this stuff. Who can sort out these contending realities? It's too hard, and there's just no payoff for a truth-seeker like Alex Pareene. Besides, you ought to know that writing about a convicted domestic terrorist perjurer lawfarer lefty philanthropist is foolish.
Let's just leave it alone, and hope it goes away.
UPDATE: Stacy weighs in on alleged East Coast Cambodian
heroin opium kingpin Pareene's coverage of the story and links Patterico on the joys of vicitimhood. Patterico, in turn, returns the favor of a link to 'Instapundit' Glenn Reynolds (if that is his real name), who still hasn't invited me to join the right-wing Christian paramilitary unit known as The Army of Davids.
And now, Alex Pareene's "Dueling Realities":
Correction: An earlier version of this post claimed that Alex Pareene was an alleged East Coast Cambodian heroin kingpin. It should have said "opium" instead of heroin. The mistake seems to have been the result of an accidental revision by my editor, and has since been corrected. We apologize to Mr. Pareene for any butthurt this may have caused him.
Thanks to Stacy McCain for noticing the error and calling it to our attention.
* Stupid editor! It only seems like forever that Schumer's been in the Senate.
REUPDATE: Now a Memeorandum thread.