Archive for August 3rd, 2009

August 3, 2009


Just got off the phone with Dan Riehl, with whom I’m co-blogging a project about anti-Palin blogger “Gryphen,” a/k/a Jesse Griffin, Anchorage kindergarten teacher.

Given the serious nature of this story, Dan has decided to seek legal advice before publishing, a decision in which I concur. Readers are requested to visit Riehl World View or back here, where updates will be posted as soon as possible.

August 3, 2009

I guess I’m sort of a Birther…

by Smitty

UPDATE: of course I meant 44th POTUS, not 43rd.

How can you deny the documentation? The facts? The history? After you consider

  • Kneecappin’Trade
  • The Healthcare Prevention Legislation
  • Cash for Clunkers

I just don’t see how anyone can begin to deny that all the POTUS’s ideas have Born in Keynesia written all over them.

OK, everyone put the blunt instruments down and listen to me. Barack Obama has been sworn in as the the 44th POTUS by the Chief Justice of the SCOTUS. That’s just the way it (ahem) is. There are plenty of worthwhile questions pertaining to school records and such. Focus on those. They’re legitimate. They’re interesting. They’re the due diligence that magically didn’t happen pre-election.

Winning generals don’t pick crappy ground for the battle. Even if you could show that Barack Obama was really a sweet transvestite from Trans-sexual, Transylvania, it wouldn’t matter. He’s sworn in. You can’t get the 111th Congress to deal honestly with the 10th Amendment, and that’s cut and dried. Getting all of DC to admit, in the purely-for-argument’s-sake-case that birtherism is valid, that DC had completely screwed up is simply impossible. Crow on that scale is inedible. So quit the pissing into the wind, people.

August 3, 2009

A Spiritual Message for Jesse Griffin, From Blog-Fu Sensei Moe Lane

“Karma. It’s what’s for dinner.”
Moe Lane

Yeah, Moe, what a totally random coincidence, huh? I was at home working this weekend, my feelings bruised from my conspicuous non-invitation to Atlanta, when Jesse Griffin and Dennis Zaki — the Woodward and Bernstein of Anchorage — decided to post “explosive new information” about Sarah Palin from Griffin’s “best source,” that is instantly confirmed by Zaki’s “multiple sources.”

What a million-to-one coincidence that, if true, the Griffin-Zaki scoop would mean that I’d somehow failed to get a call from my own “best source,” who maybe owes me a favor or two.

A reporter never burns his sources, but a source never burns a reporter, either. So I was feeling kind of burned when I made that call Saturday and was told that Griffin and Zaki were totally full of crap. So if I got the worldwide exclusive quote . . .

“Divorce Todd? Have you seen Todd? I may be just a renegade hockey mom, but I’m not blind!”
Sarah Palin

That wasn’t exactly a coincidence. That black hole of misery now approaching Griffin the Wanker and Zaki the Bozo? Also not a coincidence.

Because my sources . . . well, wait. Just wait. Working hard. I’m not “making stuff up.”

Sometimes kharma is an all-you-can eat buffet.

August 3, 2009

How to Apologize (If You Must)

Two of my bad habits seem to have intersected recently, as I allowed myself to become distracted by an argument, rather than to focus on following up the matter of Jesse Griffin.

Being able to resist neither arguments nor distractions, there was yet another temptation — humor — awaiting at this particular intersection, and again I did not resist. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.

Therefore, for the benefit of those who do not read my posts at the Hot Air Green Room, I wish to share my formal apology to C.K. MacLeod:

Your criticism is acknowledged and I have no desire, by further dispute, to alienate whatever esteem I might otherwise retain by ceasing to argue.
Perhaps I should explain how an indifference to my own notorious reputation has become habitual. I arrived in Washington in 1997, and in subsequent years various individuals, choosing me as their particular enemy, decided to advance themselves by maligning me. It was therefore as a matter of self-interest — indeed, at times, a matter of professional survival — that I learned to flaunt a disdainful attitude about the reputation these enemies purposefully damaged. It became my custom to jest cheerfully about the harm to my career and the insult to my good name, so as never to give these vile two-faced slanderers the satisfaction of thinking they had inflicted any blow worthy of my notice.
Of course, I understand that most other people, having never suffered from such treatment, can never truly empathize with those who have suffered thus. Like Coriolanus, my pride is wounded to be required to display my scars.
Pride is my great flaw, and you will note the irony that one so naturally proud should choose to take pride in an undeserved shame, rather than be obliged to explain or defend himself, when considerations of honor ought to have required that the many who had benefitted from his labors would have leapt unbidden to his defense. Alas, as Burke said, the age of chivalry died long ago, and the man is rightly thought a sentimental fool who expects nowadays to be treated with an old-fashioned sense of justice
It was by no desire to reduce the prestige of others, and certainly not to embarrass the Palin family, that the above satire was composed. The object was to lampoon the ridiculous way in which Messrs. “Gryphen” and Zaki resorted to what I call Cargo Cult Journalism, with their alleged “sources” to justify their lies.
Although my intent was innocent — indeed, my personal feelings toward the Palins are entirely those of admiration and affection, as with one’s fellow sufferers — it is evident that my judgment was so inferior that it constituted an offense to “standards of decency,” as you say.
Accepting the superiority of your judgment in such matters, Mr. MacLeod, I have this moment resolved not to risk further offense to Hot Air readers. Therefore, I shall post nothing further at the Green Room without your express prior permission.
Thank you for your courtesy and kindness, sir, and with sincere apology for every previous offense given, it is with the warmest regard that I assure you I remain
Your most humble and obedient servant,

And I will further assure my regular readers here that the “express prior permission” mentioned shall never be requested. When I told Mr. MacLeod that pride is my great fault, it was with complete sincerity. At some point, further argument becomes insult, a cruel attempt to humiliate another by impugning his judgment, thus to enhance one’s own reputation at his expense.

Rather than to engage in such un-Christian and uncivilized behavior, to behave like an arrogant bully, insisting on the rightness of my own judgment (which I have always freely admitted is not always perfect), I bowed gracefully, and exited the room.

Those who concern themselves with standards of decency should feel free to pass judgment as to whether my exit was accomplished with as much good cheer as anyone might be expected to muster on such an unfortunate occasion, and with the dignity of a gentleman.

August 3, 2009


Time to address something that came up in the comments at a previous post, and deserving of a separate post: People are making violent threats against Jesse Griffin, the anti-Palin blogger who finally published one too many libels and inadvertantly outed himself as a result.

First: Stop the threats, everybody. Some threats were inadvertantly approved in the earlier thread, only because I’m so dog-tired I can barely see straight.

Second: Don’t let Griffin get away with his “martyr for truth” schtick. Anybody with any knowledge of libel law could see that, by passing along third-hand salacious gossip about the Palins’ marriage, Griffin was not merely on thin ice, he was treading water with a legal millstone around his neck. (No, “multiple sources” are not magic words.)

However, given my own personal experience with Internet-induced madness, and given the even more frightening experiences of such friends as Michelle Malkin and Jeff Goldstein, I don’t want to see anyone, even a lying idiot like Griffin/”Gryphen,” suffer threats of personal retaliation on account of what they’ve posted on a blog.

Sometimes, my dear online friends, we need to step away from the keyboard, relax a minute and ask ourselves: “What Would Chris Crocker Do?”

Had to remove some information here, if you get my drift.

UPDATE: One of my sources had a problem with something I’d posted previously here, and it was very important to take it down immediately, for reasons I can’t explain. Because I didn’t have time to go through the sentences and try to find exactly the part that had to be deleted, I just deleted everything below the video.

Better safe than sorry, according to multiple sources. And a basic rule is that a reporter never burns his sources, especially sources who are giving him really great stuff.

By the way, I’m loving how some of the commenters are picking up on the Cargo Cult Journalism trick that Dennis Zaki and Jesse Griffin have used to smear the Palins. It’s the “sources said” voodoo, where the magic words are an incantation empowering you to say anything you want.

It’s a game that’s fun to play. Like you could play it with your wife: “Honey, those jeans make you look fat, sources said.” And then when she clobbers you, she’s violating your First Amendment rights.

August 3, 2009

‘Mommy, Why Does My Kindergarten Teacher Lie About Sarah Palin?’

UPDATE 10:53 p.m.: The identification of “Gryphen” as Jesse Griffin, part-time kindergarten teacher at Trailside Elementary in Anchorage, is now confirmed. And let me add an overdue thanks to Dan Riehl, who got the same information and followed up with research and sources of his own.

Dan is one of the best document-research guys in the conservative blogosphere, and his standards of verification make Dennis Zaki look like a clown in floppy shoes. (Of course, Zaki doesn’t need much help in that regard.) I’ve been a reporter for more than 20 years, the past 12 years in D.C. Dan is “just some blog dude” who only moved to the D.C. area two years ago, and in some respects, he’s got better sources than I do.

Will update later with more below . . .


ORIGINAL (6:39 p.m. ET): An anonymous e-mailer forwards to me this communication, which I post without editing, except for formatting purposes:

I would like you to know that Gryphen of Immoral Minority (Palin divorce smear) is actually one Jesse Griffin. He must value his identity because he had his fellow Palin Hater, Dennis Zaki, black out his name in this document:
Zaki reveals that Gryphen is a kindergarten teacher of some kind:
Thomas Van Flein, Sarah Palin’s lawyer, threatened Saturday to serve libel papers at a kindergarten to the owner of the highly trafficked “ImmoralMinority” blog for a divorce story on the Palins. The blog was given until 3pm Saturday to remove the story and post a retraction. The blogger stands by the story.
He also admitted in his most recent post that he is a teacher, but note that he won’t post his name

Here is the evidence that he is one Jesse Griffin:

Gym forum page where Jesse Griffin’s handle is “Gryphen:” (bottom of page)
Facebook page (friends with other Palin haters)
Donated to “Alaskans for Truth,” a group created to smear the Palins:
Now here is the disturbing part, he is a teacher’s aide to small children:

How this person can be allowed children is beyond me. He has written absolutely sick things about the Palins. He once posted a cartoon of Governor Palin holding a gun to her head. He once stated that he hoped that the “bitch would snap her ankle” walking off of a curb. This person is absolutely disgusting and should not be around children. At the most, his identity should be exposed in order for Alaskan parents to see who their children are around during the school day. If you look back through his website you will notice a disturbing obsession with the Palin family. He is also a Trig Truther person who thinks Palin’s son Trig is not really hers.
These Palin Haters are liars who are trying to destroy a good conservative. I’m sick of this crap.

I cannot vouch for the information alleged by my anonymous correspondent, and convey this message with the links provided, as a public service so that anyone may examine the available evidence and make up their own minds.

“Multiple sources”? Heh.

UPDATE 8:01 p.m. ET: The anonymous e-mailer also passes along examples of the kinds of NSFW things “Gryphen” has said about the Palins on his blog:

“So our trailer trash Barbie of a Governor is also a spoiled brat who blames her failings on the people around her? Nothing that I learn about this nasty bitch surprises me anymore.”
Nov. 6, 2008

“She kind of reminds of that girl who did not get invited to the prom so she dresses up in a low cut dress and high heels and tries to get all of the boys to pay attention to her instead of their dates. And later you find her in a parked car giving a hand job to the captain of the football team. Pure class.”
June 9, 2009

And, naturally, the obligatory Sully-style gynephobic Trig-Truther meme:

“Wherever Trig came from he has proved to be a very valuable asset to Sarah Palin indeed. But just where did Trig Palin come from? As of today, as of this minute, and after over a month of searching I cannot tell you. I simply do not know for certain. I do know however where he did not come from. He did not issue forth from Sarah Palin. He may have been conceived inside her house (The jury is still out on that one), but he was not conceived in her uterus. On that one fact I have absolutely no doubt.”
June 6, 2009

Gym-buff guy obsessed with the uterus of a married woman you don’t even know? NTTAWWT. IYKWIMAITYD.

Oh, yeah, Gryphen: The anonymous tipster sends along the screen-capture JPGs of all that crap, so the old “Memory Hole” trick won’t help you.


Have a nice day, Gryphen 😀