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Steve Gilliard, 1964-2007

It is with tremendous sadness that we must convey the news that Steve Gilliard, editor and publisher of The News Blog, passed away June 2, 2007. He was 42.

To those who have come to trust The News Blog and its insightful, brash and unapologetic editorial tone, we have Steve to thank from the bottom of our hearts. Steve helped lead many discussions that mattered to all of us, and he tackled subjects and interest categories where others feared to tread.

Please keep Steve's friends and family in your thoughts and prayers.

Steve meant so much to us.

We will miss him terribly.

photo by lindsay beyerstein


No shit

Getting separated from the herd.

Tue Feb 13, 2007 at 07:49:31 AM PST


hink the Edwards campaign's blog troubles ended with Amanda Marcotte's resignation? Think the Edwards campaign's blog troubles end with Edwards?

Think again.

As predicted, right wing activists have detected in the sheepish silence of the other Democratic presidential campaigns an opportunity to separate yet more top contenders from the herd, and turn Democrats against Democrats.

First on the block: Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Congratulations, geniuses. And best of luck to you.

The self-proclaimed "Catholic-based advocacy group" Fidelis has sent essentially identical letters to Clinton (PDF) and Obama (PDF), demanding that they:

publicly condemn the anti-Catholic and anti-Christian blog posts by Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan, who serve as official bloggers for the John Edwards for President Committee, and call for their immediate dismissal.

And what happens if Clinton and Obama refuse? Why, they'll be attacked as "anti-Catholic and anti-Christian," of course. Or at least, that's the unarticulated threat implicit here:

As one of the leading candidates pursuing the Democratic nomination for President, I believe you are in a unique position to make clear that anti-Catholic and anti-Christian bigotry of any kind should not be tolerated by any candidate. By taking up this issue publicly, you will be able to distinguish your candidacy from Mr. Edwards, while acknowledging the respect due people of faith in America, and in particular, Catholics and Christians.

This is almost precisely what I feared the other day, when I wrote:

This fight, if Edwards is going to be called upon to make it, must be everyone's fight. If the other campaigns cannot demonstrate that they would have displayed the same courage we call upon Edwards to display, then they benefit from the right's strategy of divide and conquer. And to the extent that they benefit, they give a pass to and encourage such attacks in the future, and are powerless to stop them when the next one comes. All they can do is hold on tight, cross their fingers, and pray they're not the next target. And that's no way to win anything. Certainly not the White House....

If you want Edwards to stand up, realize that you're going to have to demand that all the campaigns stand up. Literally. They're going to have to say that they stand by Edwards. Because these attacks only really hurt campaigns among primary voters. That's us. The people who launched this thing aren't ever going to vote for Edwards, or any other Democrat. They're pulling your strings. They're influencing your primary vote. But the minute this vendetta loses its ability to influence the primary, it loses its power....

Until Edwards is immunized by the rest of the Democratic field, the right has leverage on our side of the aisle that they're not entitled to.

Too late for that now, though.

And to no one's surprise, this morning the same m.o. (i.e., Michelle Malkin's bleating about Obama's "wasted" lives comment) continues to pay undue dividends.

The DC consultants say play it safe.

This is the result.

Lunatics are setting the agenda for the Dems.

People are just fucking sick of it. Why are you beholden to crazy people. They aren't Dems, and the reek of cowardice comes off you when you bend to this bullshit.

Amanda quit and they still want her scalp. Take that as a hint.

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