‘A Dual-Masturbation Show In Active Development’

“Bloggers aren’t going to be kingmakers even though no bloggers actually said they were and most don’t want to be, but looking like I can explode myths with the awesome power of my eyebrows is way more fun than actually writing about politics OR blogging. RAWK!”

In other words, who pissed in Perry Bacon’s cornflakes? Jesus. It’s been like two years now, I’ve been reading one whiny pussy piece after another about how bloggers are unruly and need to be feared, but also they suck, because they can’t do anything, yet they’re all-powerful, so we need to beware of them, or something, and the whole thing’s starting to turn into this high-pitched whine like a car past its service date.

Here’s the thing about blogging. And about the Internet in general, and YouTube, and MeetUp, and the whole tasty shebang. All it does is give people opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t have to use skills they either have or don’t.

I was talking to a friend of a friend at a charity thing on Saturday, and I was bragging about Scout (as you must do, once you’ve met her) because ordinarily, in order to go report on a story, you need to go to journalism school and/or hook up with a paper or other outlet, work your way up a ladder, pitch the idea, get an expense account approved for a trip, in other words, spend years of your life fapping around before you get the opportunity to cover something you truly care about. Instead, she used the tools at her disposal and she raised money online and went and did the story. It’s actually really remarkable, but “blogging” by itself couldn’t do that. She did it.

And in what pre-blogging world would anybody give a shit about what I had to say about politics? I wrote stuff for years that got read by fewer people than stop by this site every day, no way was I ever going to get a book deal out of it, because I wasn’t part of the Kool Kids’ Klub, my middle initial isn’t a numeral and while I throw a good dinner party, god damn it, I do it in Chicago and not in DC so the Washington Post could give a damn what I say. My dad’s brilliant but he’s not the chairman of NBC, plus I have zero patience for sucking up to people I think are idiots just to get a job, which has always been my problem vis-a-vis career advancement.

Hit our limits? Bitches, we ain’t even started yet. It’s been what, two years? And now everybody’s got a book out, Firedoglake is starting an imprint (go give them some scratch for it, would you? We need more progressive publishers), and people are scrambling to catch up. It’s not the gold rush, nobody’s getting rich, and maybe I missed the Giant Blog Declaration last year where Generalissimo Kos said we’d all be the be-all and end-all in American politics, which is what Mr. Bacon Jr. seems to be responding to here in confronting some projection of reality that doesn’t at all exist.

If I did miss the Townhouse Manifesto, okay, I’m not on the list so who the hell knows, but otherwise it seems to me that bloggers are doing what they can, and expanding the definition of what that is, every day. And maybe it’s just me being wide-eyed and thrilled, but I don’t classify that as some kind of anti-authoritarian acting out. I classify that as people taking what they’ve got in front of them and using it to get the job done. Their definition of “the job” not to mention “done” may differ from Mr. Bacon’s, which is probably what’s really pissing him off.



13 thoughts on “‘A Dual-Masturbation Show In Active Development’

  1. considering how bad my blog sucks, i should be in gnewpapers. or at least on one of them gnews channels. yes, i should be on MSNBC, i could be the arts poohbah.

  2. It’s like the pamphlets! It’s like the pamphlets! Citizen journalism scares the crap out of the DC-dinner/cocktail-party-circuit folks. We’re doing what we can. Yay Scout! Yay Athenae! Yay Holden!

  3. Um, Starbuck? You don’t need to make me fall in love with you any more than I already have, ‘kay?

  4. Dude. I got that show drunk last week and made out with it in the coat closet.
    It’s very early in our relationship, but I think it could end up being very special.

  5. Uhm… Maybe Perry wants to ask George Allen what he thinks about the power of blogs.
    The fact is, I read stories here and on other blogs, then a day or two later see those same stories on the Daily show (yeah, Steward loves him some Atrios/Digby/Kos/FD/FDL), and then a few days later, Mathews gets them, and Salon, and then finally someone gets around to checking out all the hubub at the times or the post. Don’t tell us blogs don’t have the power to move mountains, when Allen goes from the annointed frontrunner of the republican party to a toss up to save his seat. A home movie of the guy in full jackass mode, a picture or two of him posing with the klan, and the drip is now a gusher, thanks to some badass citizen journalism – these guys just don’t get it – bloggers are BETTER at this than they are, or will ever be.
    Keep it up.

  6. I suppose I should say something like, “If we can’t say assfucking the terrorists have won.” But I won’t

  7. Scout is a marvel, but let’s not underestimate the power of our little community here and the good folks that put on this show. Athenae, Tena, and Holden.
    I’m better and smarter from reading them and kind of knowing them.
    I was trying to get Scout on the Oprah show for her work on the Hurricane and flooding, but I think they were too wrapped up in their idea of the story, “We are looking for cheerleaders who raised money with a kissing booth to rebuild New Orleans. Are you one?” Style over substance. So they missed out on her great story. (By the way, if any of you reading this are producers for TV shows or reporters doing stories on New Orleans, contact Scout –she will be a GREAT addition to your show/article)
    We have TV people who want to talk to the “most popular” blogger “who lives within the taxi distance of the studio” and who can be relied upon to give good sound bites. So they book Anne Maire Cox. Of course they don’t talk about what she is famous for but it is a simple way of dismissing the seriousness of the people blogging on the left.
    Maybe we should demand that when they have a woman blogger on they get Athenae or Scout. I’m sure they also could refrain themselves from talking about as*f**king too.
    There is a current campaign by the White House to elevate Right Wing bloggers. Mr. Powerline goes to the White House! Meets the President! They are courting them the way that they courted the right wing radio shows because they know that the righwing bloggers will get totally jazzed by the access to power and channel it to the base.
    Maybe we should demand that the White House meet with OUR representatives. Holden has a meeting with Tony Snow! Athenae meets with Bush! Tena puts the smack down on Gonzales! Scout demands answers from the head of FEMA!
    This dismissing of bloggers is also because of the whole deal of not paying your dues and not getting paid by “real people”. ‘These people are junkies for credentials. But on the left when we have the credentials they ignore them. Atrios? Ph.D. Just like Condi!
    Kos? Lawyer. Warrior. Author. Blogger. Just like hmmmm. Are their any lawyer, warriors, autho/r bloggers in the Bush admin?
    I wish that he sounded older than 24 but those are the breaks.
    The funny thing is that even though I see brilliance in this page every single day, for some people it’s not real enough– unless it is in a format they know what to do with and how to consume and dismiss if necessary.
    Book deals? Great, I’m going to do anything possible to get Athenae the MONEY that people give people for writing a book. She is that good. But it is also so it will raise her status so that she can get on the short list of TV shows and newspapers who are doing stories about blogging and journalism.
    Credentials are THE checkboxes for the people in “the real media” and they can’t dismiss us as easily after we show we have them. Remember when we thought that Atrios as a high school gym teacher? I kind of wish that really WAS his profession. But now that we know he is a Ph.D professor I want to rub the right wing’s noses in his expertise.
    I’m sure they would have spent endless hours mocking his PE degree and profession if that was what he really was. Look at his work, not the letters after his name you idiots.
    But what just pisses me off is all the HACKS that are paid BUCKETS of money to be “experts” and crank out “Think Tank” books. Then they get on all the tv shows, and book review articles and all the idiots who are told to buy the book but will never read it go out and buy it. Then they can say, well he’s a “Number one best seller!” because some conservative drone at a think tank bought 39 train loads of books that will be pulped or given away in goody baskets at fundraisers for Bush. But to the MSM those books are given equal play because they are “popular” I think that they should have a separate list for books that were bought in bulk, just so people can know who is manipulating the system.
    Well you can see why *I’m* not an A-list blogger. Too wordy. I was told to be cool I was only suppose to have 3 paragraphs at a maximum and to link a lot. Oh well. I’m off to play in my grunge band.

  8. I just moments ago finished watching the 2nd one. This Sorkin guy just may have a future in TV.

  9. spocko, love, no way can I restrain myself from talking about assfucking. So it’s probably just as well. 🙂

  10. I’ve been wondering when we’d get some sort of reference to the premiere of “Studio 60”.

  11. Citizen journaliism can change the world. Nothing is more threatening to the powers that be than the voice of the people. I see their fear reflected every day on the cable news in the sneering dismissal applied to any who attempt to address an issue rather than the motives of those who raise it.

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