RWN chief John Hawkins wrote Thursday about the frightening descent of Little Green Footballs, a once-famous conservative blog that over the past two years has turned decidely anti-conservative. Hawkins and I spoke by phone about this Saturday, because I’m one of the conservatives who have been attacked recently by LGF’s Charles Johnson.
So far as I can discover, this all started in October 2007 when Johnson attacked Pamela Geller, a longtime blog-buddy of mine, for attending a “counter-jihad” conference in Brussels, Belgium. Like most other bloggers, including Hawkins, I at first figured it was best to stay out of other people’s fights. JoshuaPundit describes his own reaction to Johnson’s fatwas against Geller and others:
I naively thought that this was simply a personal snit between a few essentially decent people and that it would eventually resolve itself. After all, we were all on the same side, weren’t we? . . .
As time went on, what used to be an important place on the net deteriorated into a fetid swamp with pretty much three creatures inhabiting it – the Lizard King’s increasingly vicious attacks on his ever increasing list of personal ‘enemies’, Christians and ‘creationists’, links posted by the chosen Lizardoids on the site and Charles’ occasional music videos.
Meanwhile, the body count continued – Andrew Bostom, Ann Coulter, David Littman, FOX News, Debbie Schlussel, Diane West, Melanie Phillips, Michele Malkin, Richard Miniter, Rush Limbaugh, Vodkapundit, Israel Matsav, Glenn Beck, Sigmund, Alfred and Carl, Geert Wilders, the Brussels Journal, Snapped Shot, Dr. Rusty at The Jawa report, Tundra Tabloids, Yid With Lid . . .
As Geller noted last November, Johnson began throwing more and more conservatives under his Little Green Bus, calling them “fascists” and so forth. The monomaniacal relentlessness of his attacks has finally compelled nearly every conservative blog — including such stalwarts as Powerline, Riehl World View, Gateway Pundit, Ace of Spades and The Jawa Report, to name but a few — to repudiate Johnson, and Michelle Malkin’s HotAir.com recently designated LGF a “Left” site.
It is possible to analyze Johnson’s bizarre attacks from a political viewpoint. He was apparently a “9/11 liberal”: Someone with no previous involvement in conservative politics who was alarmed by the radical Left’s treacherous attempt to undermine America’s military response to Islamist terrorism. Nothing wrong with such patriotic sentiment in time of war — it would be nice if more liberals felt that way — but it is not to be confused with conservatism.
After Republicans blundered away their congressional majority and the war in Iraq became increasingly unpopular, Johnson’s liberal views on domestic politics — and perhaps even more than that, his intense animosity toward traditional Judeo-Christian belief — evidently drew him back toward the Democratic Party. Thus, in recent months, he has repeatedly lashed out against Glenn Beck and the “Tea Party” movement.
Beyond politics or ideology, however, the decisive influence in Johnson’s online war against Geller (and against those who defended her, as I did in November and April) appears to have been his own twisted personality:
When Pamela defended the Brussels conference and took umbrage at Charles Johnson’s libels, she unwittingly provoked a streak of paranoia and sadism inside CJ’s soul that had hitherto escaped general notice. . . .
CJ’s attitude toward Geller manifested an unscrupulous desire to be recognized as some sort of Official Arbiter, rather than being content merely to participate as an equal in the public discourse. It is this narrow, selfish ambition — the “Mean Girls” quest to be acknowledged as the Queen Bee of the third-grade playground, deciding who is worthy of membership in the Pretty And Popular clique — that has led Charles Johnson down the road to self-destruction. It’s not about politics or ideology or racism, it’s about Charles. . . .