Little Green Footballs

Friday, October 09, 2009


It's been a while since we looked in at Dennis the Peasant's place, which is why we missed this post from a couple of weeks ago in which he discusses Charles Johnson's mental state and tries to make sense of the Great LGF Switcheroo.

He is, needless to say, not impressed:

When I met Charles, back in 2004, he was fiftyish and driving a somewhat battered Hyundai. According to Raj [Roger Simon, the head honcho of Pajamas Media -ed.], he'd been cleaned out in recent divorce and didn't have much more than that Hyundai, his computer and his bike. That's got to be a tough thing to take at fifty. It is probably fair to say that Little Green Footballs and the blogosphere were about the only things Charles had going for him. Which is, quite frankly, somewhat sad.

Sad, and dangerous.

Dangerous because it gave Charles Johnson, middle-aged mediocrity, the out he needed when it came to dealing with the fact that he was just another average guy. It's something that the vast majority of us have to deal with at some point in our lives. We spend our first forty or so years believing that we are indeed special, that we can indeed do anything we want to (if only we work hard for it). It's what's been drilled into us since birth. And then, one day, we wake up and realize that we aren't special. We cannot do whatever we put minds to. We discover we are mediocre. We are average.


And herein lies the seeds of Charles Johnson's self-destruction: He is not a leader. He's an average guy.

I'd be the last person to claim I know Charles Johnson well. I spent parts of two days around the man back in 2004. But, brief as it was, my contact with him allowed me to size him up in certain respects. What those two days told me, more than anything, was that Charles Johnson was not a leader of men. His bearing did not catch the eye or command respect. Had he been more than average, he might have been able to leverage his Rathergate and LGF success. But as it turned out, cable TV gave him some time and found him wanting. Pajamas Media provided another opportunity, which, if my sources are to be believed, he wasted by playing the disenchanted loner (rather than being a leader).

More important than anything Charles did or did not do, though, was the fact that between 2004 and 2007 we collectively came to understand both the power and the limitations of the political blogosphere. In the heady days of 2003-2004, it was assumed that site traffic conferred, in and of itself, real power to the blogger. That has now been disproved. What we've learned is that it is what the blogger does that confers power. Charles Johnson gained famed not because of his inherent worth as an individual, but because - for one moment in time (Rathergate) - he managed to produce a set of facts that had a material impact on political events. Once Charles stopped producing those sort of facts, his fame (and influence) receeded.

Puzzled commenters often wonder what exactly this blog is for, now that (it appears) Charles Johnson largely agrees with us politically. But that begs the question: what exactly is LGF itself for anymore?


Anonymous said...

Charles Johnson is a scumbag.

He was defending Miss Chewbacca of the Black House. He's an effing P.C. liberal now!

Anonymous said...

LGFWatcher, may I suggest an idea? As time goes on and Charles cleans the archives, more and more information will be lost and more and more newbies won't have an idea that LGF was a racist garbage pit not so long ago. You can already see LGF fans at leftie blogs like Kos.

Perhaps you can write a multi-part essay summarizing the dirty past, while it is still possible?

Dan Coyle said...

Dennis the Peasant is an annoying scumbag too, actually, but he's spot on here.

V said...

@Anon 4:32 - is he really throwing his archives down the memory hole? If so: wow. I suppose you could check this easily enough by locating something really nasty in our archives -- which do go back 6 years -- to see if the linked-to post still exists. If you can prove that he's been deleting old stuff, you'll get a cookie.

@Dan - yes he is, but at least he's a clever, entertaining scumbag who appreciates 80s punk and who isn't afraid of poking fun at both sides of the aisle (though I can't help noticing that his attacks on Pammy & Co. have somewhat diminished ever since she became CJ's sworn enemy).

V said...

caveat re: my comment above, Charles is not shy about using IP data to shut out or even publicly humiliate people whom he suspects of poking around his site for nefarious purposes. So if you plan to go hunting for incriminating evidence of LGF's sordid past, you may want to use an anonymizer.

jeppo said...

CJ is definitely throwing huge numbers of comments down the memory hole. On one thread a couple weeks ago he was announcing that he was deleting all comments by former posters like Bigel, Rayra and numerous other former LGFers.

These posters each had 20,000 or 30,000 comments, so in the space of a couple hours he deleted hundreds of thousands of comments. Also I believe that LGF recently passed the 10 million comment mark, but CJ later remarked that LGF had 8 million comments. Could it be that he's already deleted 2 million comments?

CJ is obviously furiously trying to cover his past genocidal tracks. And he REALLY hates it when people produce evidence of LGF's genocidal past.

Southside Suarez said...

So far, at least five dead lizards have had all of their posts deleted:

-Ploome Hineni (but NOT plain old "Ploome")
-Savage Nation
-Song and Dance Man

(hattip: Nodrog)

Southside Suarez said...

what exactly is LGF itself for anymore?

The words "the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce" come to mind.

Anonymous said...

(That earlier Anon here.)

V, in recent threads Charles bragged about deleting all comments from taxfreekiller, rayra, bigel and others. So I think the amount of damning material will only diminish with time.

He even considered deleting all the posts for which Zombie was responsible one way or another, but decided against it.

So a chronicle of LGF's past may still be possible, what with google cache and all, but let not the moment pass.

Anonymous said...

Hahaha I get a really big kick out of the situation at LGF. I've been perusing this site too, for a few years. Allow me to sum up as best I can. If we had a scale from far left (0) to far right (10), in my mind, LGF migrated from around a 7 in 2002-2004 to a 2 in 2009. Yes, LGF is basically a far-left blog at this point, except for the fact that he doesn't actually cover any political issues, just how much the far right sucks. LGF is every bit as anti-right as DailyKos, except that DK covers politics as well as whining about right wingers. I honestly don't know what LGF covers that is not already covered similiarly at about 50 far-left blogs. I do get a huge kick out of what LGF Watch is here for now, if anything, now that LGF is probably further left than LGF watch. Maybe you can watch to see if he's too left-wing or Actually, it's very difficult to put LGF on any left-right continuum; it might be more appropriate to look at a sane-insane continuum. Charles Johnson is obviously consumed to the core with bitterness toward the Right. Beyond creationism, Glen Beck, Pamela Geller, and scoffing at blog posts he doesn't like, what is really there? He's entered a very crowded market in the left wing blogosphere, and there just ain't a lot of room for right-baiting without the political content. Anyway, LGF Watch has no future, for these reasons, but not through a fault of your own. There's simply no point in following LGF anymore, unless you're with the state mental health authority or something.

Anonymous said...

I think blogging is now very bad for Charles Johnson's mental health.

He probably finds the whole process addictive, but at what cost?

If he stopped blogging, it would be hard at first, but then he could escape all this.