Rave Reviews 7!

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, but better late than never, right? Here’s another delightful roundup of my more disagreeable readers’ greatest hits. Accusations of stupidity, evil, and mental disorders from faceless commenters and prominent bloggers alike, you’ll find it all here! Let’s get started:

…all the political credibility of a geranium, a not very bright geranium. – Tbone

Discussion is impossible with you. Scott Feldstein

That’s the dumbest analogy I’ve ever heard. – Jaynie59

No bumper sticker pasting here young boy .. just an old guy that is pissed off at your  “holier  than thou attitude”…. like you know more about a woman’s body  than she does… what kind of up bringing  did you have? – Walldodger

God you pro-Life people are really annoying me. – Alex

I think you may be a bit slow. – MiketheMarine

I was a Democrat until 2003, Calvin Freeburger. You want to be more careful about the sneers that you throw around. – Moe Lane

Pretty stupid…This whole story is salted with idiocy. – streiff

The important thing is you’ve found a way to pretend to be superior to women to choose to abort their pregnancies. – Jfabiani

Calvin is an inveterate and pathetic troll. He posts crap here that is poorly, if at all, researched, can’t assemble a cogent argument and puts up “defenses” like the one you just responded to. The guy is a simple minded fool or a raving idiot. Pick one. You’re wasting your time attempting to actually engage him. – mbecker908

Calvin, what a load of unmitigated crap…Too bad your understanding of the Constitution is so bad. – retire05

Maybe it is time to realize you live in a democracy where everybody of every conviction has a voice and a vote. – BizarreEntity

Maybe when you grow up a bit we can have an adult conversation. Until then, I’ll pray for you. – proALLlife

You sound like my rapist.  Cope with it, or change your attitude towards women. – Sorites Paradox

What about Calvin Freiburger’s own twisting and ignoring the Constitution when it’s convenient? – britney12

I’m ashamed to know that you are from Fond du Lac, where I live. You’ve written a lot of wacko crap before this, and I’m sure you’ll continue to do so, but you’re a joke. – Hhhhhh

This is what happens when neocon miscreants comment on what they appreciate least, namely the desired morality of the civil society. – NJ_Patriot

Now, the author of the article is not a conservative, he is a Neocon. Neocons are warmongers, more specifically warmongers for Israel, at the cost of bankrupting the United States. – edw987

this is the most poorly written editorial I’ve ever read. My God…Oh, the person who wrote this article is a man. No wonder he has no clue what he is talking about. – Guest

You will never be half man or do half the things in defense of Liberty as has Dr. Paul. Don’t embarrass yourself and blog about Ron Paul. You are too naive, young and stupid. – Illuminoti

…trash… – acat

Why don’t you “Man Up” and grow up while you’re at it and realize that we are only here for a while and then it’s over : Do you really want to spend your life being a hater and a bitter bigot? Get over yourself, why don’t you? – USAgloria

…ignorant pride and a false moral superiority… – Robyn

Calvin, Buddy, I know you hate being challenged on issues and I know it’s hard to process information that goes against your deeply-held worldview. – George

Apparantly Mr. Frieberger is either a shill for the globalist or he bought into the left/right falacy. – andrewhiu

Your a stupid, nazi idiot, you know nothing about politics and your lucky i dont take a big fat dump on your mothers chest. Shes a stupid skank and so are you thoughts, i would be ashamed if i were you, you scumbag american rat. You smell shit and you look like an asshole with out a vagina, […] stupid nigger fuck – Unknown

Come out and say you’re a liberal already. – Anonymous

By the look of you…you will never have sex with anyone much less a woman so why do you care? As a woman I can have an opinion…you…you are just a douche bag dork trying to make friends through all of this. So sad. Go get um acne boy!!! – Anonymous

You’re not pro-life. You might be anti-abortion but you’re not pro-life, you don’t care about the life or the culture. You care about getting retweeted and being stroked by other shut-ins than you do about the culture of death America has produced. – Rob Taylor

Is this serious? You’re an embarrassment to Fond du Lac, this country, and whatever college decided to give you a political science degree. – Apparently anyone can get a political science degree

you sir are a fool. You do not have to vite for every office listed on on a ballot Stay in School… It’s gonna take a while to learn the Stupid out of you. – Anonymous

Does your mommy also beg you to go out and find a girl? Or has she just accepted the fact that with a face like yours, your obvious lack of man’esque type personality, and your constant crying that her son will soon join his true group, GoPride? – Still in anonymous world

sometimes your hurtful comments towards others just makes me cringe. – Jdjdjeeeeerrrryyy

You really don’t get the private property thing, do you? I’m not surprised. – NightTwister

You obviously lack comprehension skills. – Bill S

You’ve repeatedly been warned to follow directions. You clearly can’t. I’ve had it. – Neil Stevens

This one looks like a serial killer – jakeofalltrades

We bash Muslims for their treatment of women but you have shown yourself to not be much better Calvin. – Letscook1

So you get an D for effort. – Oran Switzer

Calvin I wish you a good night as you crawl back in your tent at what ever OWS protest you are at. – izoneguy

Suggestion, instead of a worthless hit piece, post a diary of the good points of your preferred candidate. Oh, wait, I don’t think it would go over to good if you posted a diary promoting Obama. – gekster

…total and complete hypocritical piece of garbage – Scope

So, while you have been pontificating from your ivory tower of intellectualism….I have been looking at this from a “reality” prospective. – carolynr

I’m beginning to suspect that he may suffer from Asberger’s  or some other syndrome that prevents him from picking up on higher order social clues.  Poor Calvin. – Sparky

You are a repulsive scumbag. – Wade Felty

How to Get Banned From RedState Without Breaking the Rules

Since July, I’ve maintained a diary on RedState.com. Unfortunately, that ended on Sunday, November 27, when moderator Neil Stevens banned me, blocking me from posting to, commenting on, and even viewing the site in my default browser. Here’s the transcript of the offending exchange:

buckedup: Let’s face it. There is no more perfect person currently alive in the world than Governor Perry.

Moe Lane: Posting here is a privilege, buckedup…not a right. Kindly grow up, which includes not pretending that you don’t know precisely what I’m talking about.

Calvin Freiburger: Clarification, Please. Which of RedState’s posting rules was Buckedup’s comment in violation of? http://www.redstate.com/posting-rules/

Moe Lane: Take it to the Contact Us link, Calvin Freiburger…if you have a problem or question about our moderation policy. And let me save time, because I’m traveling: my next (and likely continuing) response to your response to that will be “Take it to the Contact Us link if you have a problem or question about our moderation policy.” Because we’re not having a conversation.

Calvin Freiburger: The unwillingess of RedState personnel to answer very simple questions about their own conduct, and to do so publicly for the benefit of their audience, is deeply disturbing.

NightTwister: Funny, I didn’t see unwillingness. You were instructed to take it to the Contact Us link. The fact that they aren’t interested in this particular case to do it publicly is their prerogative. I mean, it is their private property, something conservatives hold dear.

Calvin Freiburger: Deferring all questions & criticism to the Contact Us link is a cop-out. There is no reason simple explanations for disconcerting conduct cannot be given publicly, especially when the concern in question — the vagueness of the criteria by which violations are being judged — is in the interest of the entire audience. Don’t RedState’s readers have a fair expectation that the site’s moderators will hold themselves to the site’s own stated rules? I completely agree that Erickson, Lane, etc. can run the website however they choose. And we have the right to judge them accordingly.

NightTwister: So you’re the judge of “fair” here? You really don’t get the private property thing, do you? I’m not surprised.

Calvin Freiburger: No more so or less so than everybody else. And “the private property thing” is a complete non sequitur to this conversation.

NightTwister: Should be “less so” in your case and mine. This isn’t a public site. This website is privately owned. That means the owners can make and enforce the rules however they like, and they are the final determiners of what is “fair”.

You may not like that, but nobody is forcing you to come here. As for your non sequitur, you prove my point. You don’t understand private property.

Calvin Freiburger: I’ve already acknowledged their right to run RS however they want. Someone’s right to use private property in a certain way doesn’t mean someone can’t or shouldn’t be criticized from behaving badly with their private property. If Streiff, Moe Lane, and company want to falsely accuse people of rule violations, that’s their right. But it’s also my right to notice whether or not doing so reflects badly on RedState and Eagle Publishing.

NightTwister: It’s not a “right” but it would appear for now that they are going to allow you to continue in your quest to right all the wrongs on the interwebz at RedState.

Bill S: Door’s to the right. Moe’s instructions were unambiguous. You obviously lack comprehension skills.

Calvin Freiburger: Do the powers-that-be at Eagle Publishing know this is what you consider an acceptable way to treat their publication’s readers? And before you once again violate your own site’s Posting Rules with another attack on my “comprehension skills” (“2. Namecalling and personal attacks directed at other users is not allowed.”), I’ll just point out that I already have emailed the Contact Us link. Bill S, I have never treated you, or anyone on this website, with dishonestly or unprovoked hostility. I don’t understand what grounds you have for considering me an enemy, other than the fact that I’ve expressed concern over the behavior of certain individuals, have objections to Rick Perry, and think some Romney supporters are being treated unfairly.

Neil Stevens: G’bye. You’ve repeatedly been warned to follow directions. You clearly can’t. I’ve had it.

Bill S: Have a nice life. Neil did me the favor of booting you so I didn’t have to bother with it. My observation about your comprehension skills was a pretty black and white one, given your repeated refusal to follow instructions. Either you didn’t comprehend or you just decided to act like a jackass. In either case, your banning was justified.

My interest in grilling the moderators was sparked after I observed a pattern of sleazy conduct by RedState’s moderators, primarily in the form of harassment against those who defend Mitt Romney or criticize Rick Perry (see below). I’ll be the first to admit I knew I was playing a dangerous game by openly calling the mods out on such behavior. But Stevens’ stated rationale for banning me—that I disobeyed repeated warnings to follow directions—is a lie.

First, RedState’s own Posting Rules say nothing that could possibly be construed as requiring commenters to stop discussing subjects simply because a moderator expresses a desire not to talk about it himself. If a website explicitly says, these are the rules you have to follow, users have a fair expectation that those are the rules they’ll be judged by, not by arbitrary whims. It’s meaningless to even have formal rules if RedState’s actual practice is to fabricate reasons for banning people on the spot.

Second, I was not “repeatedly warned” about my behavior. Not once did Stevens warn me in any way. The only “warning” Moe Lane suggested to me was that my replies to him would be a waste of time because he would answer them all the same way. At no point did he even imply that continuing to discuss my concerns publicly was itself a bannable offense. Bill S’s reply to me did not contain any such warning, either; he merely leveled a personal insult at me—that I “obviously lack comprehension skills”—for not silencing myself. Despite Bill’s decision to violate RedState’s stated Posting Rule against “personal attacks directed at other users,” I took great pains to not respond in kind while defending myself, expressing my offense at his behavior in a firm yet respectful manner that was not profane or vulgar, did not name-call, and did not personally attack. (The only other possible interpretation, that “NightTwister’s” jabs constituted some sort of binding warnings, would be too stupid to take seriously. He’s not a moderator, and I was responding fairly to his insults.)

Third, and most significantly, the comment Stevens banned me for couldn’t have violated any instruction to stop questioning Moe Lane, for the simple fact that it was not responding to Moe Lane. It was specifically responding to Bill’s unprovoked attack on me, and did not restate the question I posed to Lane. In fact, the only reference that comment made to my exchange with Lane was a perfectly innocent clarification that I followed Lane’s instruction to use the Contact page!

Simply put, Neil Stevens—whose signature, ironically, contains a call to “Read the RedState Posting Rules”—banned me not for breaking any of the rules, but for defending myself against his colleague’s rule-breaking.

I emailed RedState—both their general contact and Erick Erickson’s personal email—three times, explaining what had happened in perfectly respectful terms. Nobody responded. I also left a comment at Stevens’ own blog, which he refused to publish or address. I gave RedState ample opportunity to settle this civilly; they rejected that opportunity (and we know that Erickson reads his email), leaving me with no choice but to publicly call out the dishonesty, immaturity, and unprofessionalism of those running what is supposed to be an honorable, serious publication.

Here’s a sampling of the aforementioned unseemly conduct from site moderators:

  • “Streiff” admitted that he doesn’t follow RedState’s Posting Rules in banning Romney supporters, but that he’ll ban them “for disagreeing, for threadjacking, for asshattery, for having red hair, for whatever.” He has also endorsed the idea of banning all Romney supporters from the website.
  • “Streiff” responded to my last diary with a comment full of personal insults—“pretty stupid,” “salted with idiocy,” “Calvin Furburger’s lack of knowledge,” “When your world began only 22 years ago”—that didn’t even accurately critique anything I wrote. That article, by the way, got 84 comments, virtually all of them critical of me, including many overt personal attacks. Among my critics were three moderators—“Streiff,” Moe Lane, and Bill S—none of whom lifted a finger about any of the pro-Perry rule-breaking.
  • Responding to allegations that RedState discriminates against Romney supporters, Erick Erickson told Politico that those who were banned had smeared others as anti-Mormon bigots, which one of the banned commenters, pro-Romney blogger Phil Larsen, denies. I asked the moderators to direct us to the quote in which Larsen did what Erickson claimed. They couldn’t. Such a quote doesn’t appear in the thread where “Streiff” banned Larsen. What does appear, though, is “Streiff” calling Phil & his brother Ryan “buttboy,” as well as saying they, along with commenter “jackdaniels11,” have a “homoerotic attachment to Romney.”
  • Bill S said outright that Romney “groupies” “are not welcome” at RedState.
  • Neil Stevens childishly mocked a commenter who suggested RedState has an excessive anti-Romney bias, equating support for Romney with homosexual feelings—“Mitt Romney’s married. You shouldn’t lust after him like that”; “Don’t use that word [sucks]. It’ll just get him hot and bothered”; and “Coming out as a Romney fan is a traumatic thing.”
  • Stevens threatened to ban a commenter for promoting the anti-incumbent organization Get Out Of Our House. When another commenter asked, “It seems like a pretty boring site. Why the hard-core reaction?” Stevens responded: “Complaints to the contact page. Don’t like it? Tough.” When the commenter called Stevens out on being “mean,” he blew up: “Can you read? I said complaints to the contact page. If you continue to threadjack I will ban you. Don’t like that? Take it to the contact page. Or you can go make your own website and whine about how mean I was to you. I don’t care. Just don’t comment about it in this thread anymore.”
  • On top of all the pro-Perry misconduct and rule-breaking practiced and tolerated by RedState personnel, “Streiff” has incredibly claimed that the misbehavior of Romney fans—“nasty little jerks”—has been so overwhelming as to turn him against Romney. It’s almost as if he’s daring someone to notice his hypocrisy. Well, “Streiff,” I’m happy to oblige.

I did a little searching after my banning, and found that lots of people have had similar experiences. Granted, some of them are probably just vengeful leftists, but most? All?

Under Erick Erickson’s leadership, RedState has become dominated by a handful of unethical, unprofessional thugs, more interested in enforcing “correct” opinion and playing Internet jackboot than in doing their ostensible jobs. Hopefully, sooner or later someone at Eagle Publishing will realize that one of their publications is being run into the ground, and restore some self-respect to RedState. The last thing the Right needs is its own equivalent of the Daily Kos.