Monday, June 06, 2011

This post will outrage all of you. I don't care.

(If you came here from BigJournalism or some cognate site, check out my latest. You'll love it!)

Alas, I was (on THIS day, of all days) forced to go out into the world to attend to real life. So I'm playing catch-up here. I didn't hear all of Weiner's confession, but the relevant bits are pretty much inescapable.

I'm told that Andrew Breitbart was on the podium speaking at a time when everyone expected to see Weiner. That must have been quite an odd sight! I don't know what Breitbart said, but summary accounts have made it clear that he wanted everyone to know that he was right all along -- even though (as all now admit) he did not vet his sources until he had run their story.

Yes, it is proven that Anthony Weiner had highly sexualized internet relationships via email and chat with various women. Breitbart has strongly intimated that one of the photos in his possession is very, very explicit. It is fair to presume that this image involves an erection sans underwear.

Breitbart's repeated references to that photo could be taken as a subtle threat to release it.

A while back, in a comment, I said that I would not believe Anthony Weiner himself if he said that he tweeted that picture on the night of the 27th.

I also said that, were I him, I would make that very "confession." Saying "I sent that picture on the 27th" would be the quickest way to get the whole sorry business into the rear view mirror.

I've also said (from nearly the beginning) that I suspected that Breitbart's crew had gained access to one or more photos sent to, or taken by, a woman other than Gennette Cordova. A lot of people shared those suspicions -- which have, of course, been justified.

I became confident that the picture did not depict Anthony Weiner. At least, it appeared that something other than his penis inhabited his underwear. Frankly, it still looks like a shot of a man who is literally playing "hide the salami." After making an embarrassingly close study of various Weiner photographs, I simply could not believe that he's that well-hung. To put the matter crudely. (Many of my readers suggested that he had thrust a forearm into his undies.)

Anthony Weiner today said that he sent the picture via Twitter to Gennette Cordova. He said that he had never spoken to her on a personal level. She tells the same story, and there is no reason to doubt her.

Thus, Weiner made the most amazing confession conceivable: That he just sent a crotch shot out of the blue to someone he did not know. Worse, he used Twitter -- which places all images on public display, even when sent as a direct message. (The example here proves the point; that painting was sent by "Chalice" as a DM, yet it is also public.) Moreover, he did this incredible thing knowing full well that there were political enemies tracking his every move on Twitter.


I don't believe that scenario. I accept every part of his confession except for the statement about the night of the 27th.

I wouldn't believe that part if Weiner personally called me up and insisted.

Lots of guys have made incredibly dumb mistakes when thinking with their "downstairs" brain. Lord knows I have. But I've never encountered a sufferer from "testosterone poisoning" who has ever done anything quite that foolish. Even a private citizen would not (unless protected by anonymity) send out a crotch shot to a woman he did not know.

A congressman...?

My imagination is as good as anyone else's, but my brain refuses to accept the possibility.

Why would he lie about the night of the 27th? Because, as is now established, and as we have all long suspected, there is a lot else in his history that he does not want investigated or discussed further.

In particular, Breitbart has made it clear that he possesses an explicit shot, probably involving an erection. If I were Weiner, I might say anything -- anything -- to forestall that image from being made public.

Breitbart clearly demanded public justification for his decision to run a story based on a shady source whose name he does not know, and whom he himself had come to suspect of malfeasance.

Did Breitbart contact the congressman and blackmail him?

That's hardly necessary. Breitbart's own words this day constitute an implied threat. He has said that he possesses an extremely explicit photo which he would prefer not to show. That as-yet unseen photo constitutes a Sword of Damocles (no pun intended). Perhaps without realizing the implications, Breitbart has today made statements which place him perilously close to the "Charles Augustus Milverton" category.

If I were Weiner, I would have said exactly what he said today, even if I had not sent the picture on the 27th.

Now that he has said what so many wanted him to say, he hopes that the whole affair will go away within a couple of weeks. Perhaps it will. Already, some newsfolk seem bored. (That was fast!) Even one Republican commentator has said that the story won't have legs because no laws were broken and the congressman's constituency will probably forgive him.

Suppose that Weiner had said: "I am guilty of improper relationships with half a dozen women, and I am guilty of sending these women erotic photos, but I did not send that picture to Gennette Cordova on the 27th." What would be the result?

Obviously, the journalistic feeding frenzy would continue for months.

More importantly, Breitbart would, under those circumstances, release the ultra-explicit photo, which probably depicts an erection. That shot would be published ad infinitum for the rest of Weiner's life.

Faced with that rotten choice, I would have gone with the "Get it over with as soon as possible" option.

That said, the question arises: Will the erection photo come out anyways? Probably. The people who possess it cannot be trusted. Breitbart probably won't release it, but someone else may.

I really don't care who gets pissed off by what I'm saying. This blog has pissed off people before. It survived the 2008 attacks.

No-one can deny that a "Get Weiner" conspiracy existed. No one can deny that one member of this group bragged about his knowledge as a "cyber sleuth." As I learned only recently, Twitter passwords are notoriously easy to to crack. There's an inexpensive app that can do the job quickly.

Since most people use one password (or minute variations on that password) across many accounts, anyone who had Weiner's Twitter password would probably have gained access to the man's Yahoo, AOL and Facebook pages. That is probably how the photos came into the possession of Breitbart's sources.

It is noteworthy that, before this scandal blew open, Weiner complained about his Facebook account being "hacked." At least some of the defamatory information concerned a Facebook relationship.

Would I recant what I'm saying here if an IP trace indicated that Weiner sent the Tweet? No. Here's why.

Will I ever apologize to Andrew Breitbart? Only if he goes back in time and erases his whole history.

His brand of sexual "gotcha" journalism and his reliance on iffy sources were hardly justified by anything Weiner said today. When Drudge broke the Monica Lewinski story, he relied on a single source that mainstream journalists had rejected. Just because that story proved true doesn't mean that Drudge acted responsibly, or that he is anything but a slimeball. Why should we hold a differing view of Breitbart?

As noted earlier, I've long known of a potential sexual scandal which, if revealed, could do enormous harm to Barack Obama's White House, even though the story is not about him. I despise Obama. But I won't try to damage his administration (or a Republican administration) via a single-source story about sex -- a story involving no broken laws.

(Incidentally, that story concerns something worse than anything Anthony Weiner spoke about today.)

Will I apologize to Dan Wolfe? No. In the first place, "Dan Wolfe" appears to be a fake name, and one should not apologize to fictional characters. In the second place, I said that Dan Wolfe tried to frame a congressman. Even if we were to stipulate that everything Weiner said today was true, it is still provably the case that the man who called himself Dan Wolfe tried to frame a congressman.

Is it technically possible for the Yfrog exploit (the subject of one of the most popular posts in this blog's history) to be used to create a fake Tweet sent "via Tweetdeck"? Earlier today, I was going to backtrack on that assertion. This morning, however, I received a private communication from someone who claimed to know about hacking. This person insisted that the "sent via Tweetdeck" message can be spoofed. Alas, he didn't go into much detail. I don't know this fellow and don't know if what he says is on the level; he hasn't explained in layman's terms just how one goes about doing such a thing.

But as a matter of general principle, if an IP address can be spoofed, then one can only imagine what else is possible.

Underaged? Let's talk about an issue which, I understand, played some role in the press conference. Weiner was asked how he knew that the women with whom he had sexually-charged communications were, in fact, of age.

That's a damned good point.

This very day, thousands -- perhaps millions -- of men and women all over the globe will have sexualized cyber-dialogue with other men and women. How much do these people truly know about the person on the other side?

I've never told the following story to anyone, and it's pretty easy to guess what use my enemies will make of it. Nevertheless...

Way back in 1995, not long after I first acquired an internet-ready computer, I made the cyber acquaintance of a lady we will here call Madeleine. She claimed to be 44 years old -- older than I was at the time. She also claimed to be a former research scientist living in another state. Our dialogue soon became...hmm. How to put this? It was much (much) heavier than flirtation but could not be classified as cybersex. Although we never exchanged photos or spoke voice, I repeatedly asked to meet her.

This woman was phenomenally articulate, intelligent, well-read and well-traveled. She demonstrated knowledge of foreign languages. Anyone chatting with her would presume that she had been to graduate school.

After some time, we drifted apart.

Two years later, Madeleine contacted me and apologized for her impersonation. She admitted that she was 17 at the time we met online. Seventeen was above the age of consent in her state but not in mine. For the first time, she sent me a photo, and I cringed to see the face of someone young enough to be my daughter.

Sweartagod, I had no idea. She could have fooled anyone.

So...yeah: Trusting the other person is a very real problem.

One final request: I still have not heard the whole of the press conference. Can anyone tell me if Weiner admitted to physical contact with any of the women with whom he had cyber relationships?

Oh...and do I forgive Weiner? Well, doing this research required two Twitter accounts, even though one is too many. That's unforgivable.


Anonymous said...

I know! I can't believe that none of these liberals will admit that Sarah was right all along about Paul Revere! History is history, you can't change it just to get some'Gotcha' moment for your ratings. It's like they just have some kind of ideological blinders on that totally prevent them from admitting the egg on their face. Palin 2012!

Anonymous said...

You watch too many movies dude. That's quite the conspiracy theory you have there. Methinks you're about 6 months away from moving into a secluded shack in the woods of Montana

- Jake

Jack said...

Oh, there was nothing subtle about Breitbart's threat to publish the photo. It was an explicit threat. He basically demanded that Weiner acknowledge he was right all along. The sociopathy on display in Breitbart's tormenting of Weiner, and his insistance that Weiener comply with his demands on pain of further embarassing revelations, was truly breathtaking. And the same sociopathy is on display among the wingnut/lunatic GOP base.

Anonymous said...

From the Desk of Ms. Vandal:

Sex scandals are recoverable in politics. It is naive to think otherwise. Personally, I do believe that Rep. Wiener is utilizing a page from the 'head 'em off at the pass' (too many puns not to make some unintentionally) playbook.

Pity, really. I had some high hopes for Rep. Wiener, especially in his attempts to dethrone Judge Thomas.

DJH said...

"my brain refuses to accept the possibility"

That is EXACTLY what your problem is on this issue. Rep. Weiner openly admitted to having been lying about everything, and because you believed every one of his lies, his admissions must now be the real lies. You couldn't have been duped at first. No, no...of course not.

Do you consider yourself a member of the 'reality-based community'?

DaTechGuy said...

Wow! I didn't realize that your beliefs concerning this matter amounted to a religion!

Anonymous said...

Dear Joseph,

You are left hopelessly clinging to your thread of a false theory. Exactly like the 9/11 CD conspiracists you ridicule. As G.K. Chesterton said...

Do yourself a favor and take a break from your community-based reality for a while. Not all Democrats are angels, and not all Republicans are devils.


5th Level Fighter

Anonymous said...

In the context of everything that's come out, it's pretty clear to me that Weiner sent the photo in question.

When I've strongly invested myself in a belief, and new information comes out, it's hard for me to recognize that I was in error. My mind comes up with all kinds of semi-plausible scenarios to hold onto the core belief (W.V.O Quine's "web of belief" argument is relevant here). That only changes if I really step back and try to gain perspective. The human mind has all kinds of confirmation biases (especially a mind as bullheaded as my own).

Like you, I became convinced that Weiner was framed. There were a lot of pieces that provided circumstantial evidence of this - the ease of spoofing Twitter, the incredible stupidity required for a politician to tweet such a pic, dishonesty on the part of the accusers (e.g. creation date of the file supposedly from Wolfe's browser cache), etc. I haven't commented on the Weiner case (on this blog or elsewhere) up to now - I guess in part because I had some lingering residual doubt (even though I was 98% sure). I thought Weiner likely had something to hide (thus refusing to get the FBI involved, etc.), but that he did not send the pic.

But trying to look at it from some distance - it all seems to make sense. He tweeted the pic in a careless moment, then shortly thereafter tried to delete it. "Wolfe" and crew were obsessively watching his twitter and yfrog accounts and caught it (at least in the screen cap). The exact provenance of the 800x600 version "Wolfe" later submitted is unclear - perhaps "Wolfe" opened it up in some viewer and re-saved it, or it had been independently obtained from the other woman Weiner e-mailed it to, etc. When I re-examine Wolfe's IM conversation with Ladd Ehlinger Jr. and his tweets, along with everything Weiner has said and done, the pieces all fit together (i.e. that Weiner did tweet the pic).

OtherJoe said...

Keep after the windmills, Joe.

Joseph Cannon said...

Dear 5th:

Chesterton said THAT? Was there a Father Brown story I missed?

Is it your position that I am a member of a community? WHICH community? I'm a loner by nature.

"Not all Democrats are angels, and not all Republicans are devils...."

You're talking to the guy who fought Obama every step of the way throughout 2008 and counseled readers to vote for McCain in the general. (And I'm also on record as saying, repeatedly, that I wish Hillary had never run -- which is why the PUMA folks always kept their distance.)

Feel free to despise me. But my maverick credentials are beyond dispute. A frequently-seen motto on this blog is "When they give you ruled paper, write the other way."

Some attribute the quote to, er, Chesterton...

Anonymous said...

Joe, Weiner himself admitted he had sent pictures plural, not just to that one women, but to six women over the last few years. I was willing to give the dude the benefit of the doubt when he was insisting his Twitter account had been hacked, but his refusal to involve authorities and not outright saying the images wasn't him made me have some doubts about him.

Sorry Joe, but even liberal dudes can do stuff like that. If it had just been one picture to that one woman I would have been annoyed, but 6 women who were strangers to him that just happened to be following him on Twitter, that's sleazy.

Joseph Cannon said...

At least the National Journal has made the point I've been making for days now: Even if a picture is sent as a Direct Message, it still would be public.

Weiner had to know that.

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to your expose on the real father of Rielle Hunter's child.

Tax Nomo said...

Let me get this straight. You find it impossible to believe that a Congressman would be stupid enough to send an errr... inappropriate picture of himself to someone he doesn't know... but you DO believe that he'd take credit for doing it, even if he didn't. That's an amazing perspective you have there. I think you've been looking at Weiner's weiner too much.

Anonymous said...

The stuff about @goatsred (Mike Stack) and @patriotusa76 (Dan Wolfe) hounding Weiner's twitter followers bothers me. They were hounding them well before the 27th and Weiner unfollowed the underage girls before then too. Surely he had to know about the group of people out to get him for his online relationships and wouldn't have struck one up with someone he barely knew and could have been one of them.

Of course doing all this shit on Facebook itself is a really stupid move so maybe Weiner is just dumb.

MisterMoney said...

So Weinber is a liar who may not be a liar. He lied about not lying about what he lied about? Come on. If he lied about one thing, he likely lied about everything. I hope that during the next congressional vote when his name is called and he votes, the speaker of the house asks him "Is that your vote or is it another lie!"

Phelps said...


So, since I was a "liar" for being what you thought at the time was wrong, does that make you a liar now?

Go back up and reread what you have written in the context of a birther the day after Obama released his birth certificate. That is where you are right now.

milowent said...

lots of lessons we can learn from this "scandal" and the investigation of hacking/hoaxing claims on the internet. this would be a 'textbook case' if there were a course on such things, because so many facts or suspected facts helped one side or the other.

on the hoax side, you had a legitimate way the tweet could be hoaxed (though some effort would be required), one serious enough that the service was taken down for a day to fix it. you also had the worst possible anti-weiner biased axe-to-grind weiner folks pushing the tweet. one is convicted porn peddler who boasts about his cyber detective abilities, who suggested (after being thrown under a bus, albeit) that the other might have faked the tweet. the other is so obessesed with weiner it defies belief, and he just happened to be on twitter looking at weiner's page for the extremely short period of time that this DM appeared.

for me, the unfathomable fact that got me interested in this controversy was that this congressman would upload a dick photo to a public yfrog account. it now seems he really didn't understand how reckless that was. but he was taking many other risks of the same type.

in france, most of the public think dominique strauss-kahn was framed for this rape-the-hotel-maid story. of course that sounds absurd to americans. a lot of americans believed obama wasn't born in the united states. that sounded absurd to many other americans. this weiner case wasn't as extreme as those cases.

ultimately these hoaxes get proven or disproven based on the evidence. even when that evidence is TMI.

you did some good work joseph; there was also some stuff we could have done better, but there's always next time. please look me if you need any help next time you fall down the rabbit hole of internet sleuthing!


Joseph Cannon said...

"Joe, Weiner himself admitted he had sent pictures plural, not just to that one women, but to six women over the last few years."

Of course. I stipulated that I had no doubt about that. It is also obvious that at least one of the shots is so extreme that he very much hopes it will never come out. Like it or not, that photo functions as a form of blackmail.

Joseph Cannon said...

"You find it impossible to believe that a Congressman would be stupid enough to send an errr... inappropriate picture of himself to someone he doesn't know... but you DO believe that he'd take credit for doing it, even if he didn't."

I think he's been mousetrapped into confessing to the events of the 27th because the things he did on previous occasions were worse. Specifically, he doesn't want Breitbart to uncover the "explicit" photo in his possession.

There have been cases in the past where people admit to things they did not do. For example, this has been known to happen in the course of plea bargaining.

Anonymous said...

"My brain refuses to accept the possibility" -- that's some pretty nasty cognitive dissonance you're experiencing. Why you're not demanding his immediate resignation is beyond me, cuz the longer he tries to "defend" himself in his hilariously counterproductive manner, the longer this is going to drag on.

Joseph Cannon said...

The Cannon-haters coming here (however briefly) may be amused to learn that my own brother does not agree with the basic thrust of this post. Yet he adds:

"Like the lady on the View said, what guy wouldn't admit to having a bulge like that? I would have gladly taken credit for it but he beat me to it."

Anonymous said...

Joseph, publishing all those comments from the Breitbart fans shows your integrity.

Unfortunately for them, it also shows what asses they are.


wws said...

I'm just surprised that you think the picture of Weiner's shorts showed someone who was "well hung" - to me, it looked remarkably puny, something I'd be quite embarrassed to let anyone see. But I don't look at other men's junk, I have only myself for comparison.

Anonymous said...


Sorry you had a bad few days but I tried to help you out early.

Your only hope is that there is not a real Dan Wolfe that gets caught up in this Defamation that you engaged here on your blog.

There were crazy people stalking quite a few real Dan Wolfe individuals out there all because of the words of Congressman and a young woman that got caught up in this lie!


Anonymous said...

Yes, the haters will leave once they're sated on the gloating high. But I have little doubt that Breitbart's moment in the sun will be short lived because he'll continue down the same course, using unvetted sources that feed him juicy dirt on any and all Dems and their supporters.

There's no question that Weiner was ridiculously dumb and irresponsible in what he did and then lied about it, making a bad situation even worse.

But Breitbart is no righteous crusader. At the end of the day, he's still a slimeball with a single 'win' in his catcher's mitt.

Anonymous said...

Guys - Joe Cannon has been doing ALL of this - pushing this completely unbelievable theory of how Weiner was "framed" to generate traffic to a site that has few visitors. No one could be so gullible to push such a ridiculous "hacking" theory to this extent in the face of clear lies on behalf of the person they were defending. At least no one with the minimum brain power needed to excercise the motor skills needed to maintain a blog. Pure and utter publicity stunt is the only explanation for Joe's complete foolishness over the last week.

Anonymous said...

Adding a bit to my 7:23 comment.

For me, it comes down to Occam's razor.
Weiner engaged in sexually explicit exchanges with multiple women he barely knew - incredibly stupid and careless behavior given his political postion (especially given all the politicians - e.g. Spitzer from his own state - recently brought down by sex scandals). And Weiner continued to do so even after receiving public heat in the media (e.g. for his online involvement with porn star Ginger Lee). And his every online move was being obsessively tracked by a rightwing clique.
Hypothesis 1: Incredibly careless behavior involving sexually explicit pics + obsessive observation of his every online move by RW clique.
Hypothesis 2: Incredibly careless behavior involving sexually explicit pics + obsessive observation of his every online move by RW clique + use of a Twitter exploit.

The parsimonious explanation is clear.
In addition, the RW group tracking him had no need to deploy an exploit - they already had gathered plenty of compromising material. In addition, "Wolfe" (in his IM chat, etc.) does not come across as having any technical competence.

Yesterday, Yfrog also came out with a statement, announcing the results of their internal investigation "confirming that our email upload feature has not been compromised in any way". Now you know that in that investigation, they must have specifically examined Weiner's account. The e-mail headers for e-mails to that account would include a trace of the message from its origin - so if a "spoofing" e-mail were sent by someone else (not Weiner) from a different site/provider, that would show up in the e-mail header. Now, Yfrog would potentially have reason to lie - but if all of this came to a federal investigation (quite likely) it would ultimately be exposed (e.g. once the FBI accessed the e-mails) and Yfrog would come out looking terrible.

Again - Occam's razor favors a simple explanation to all of this.

I do have to say that you did a good job of cogently laying out the pro-Weiner case. The "size" argument was a weak point (seemed clear that he had something stuffed in his pants), but everything else was well and carefully examined, tested, and argued (to my mind, much more so than some of the write-ups at Kos - e.g. the Kos "Christian Infowar Militia" expose seemed pretty flawed/weak to me).

Even though I didn't comment on the Weiner case online (prior to today), I'm eating crow on this with my girlfriend (she just sent me an e-mail entitled "I. Told. You. So.").

Joseph Cannon said...

Anon, I let your post see print because it sounds a recurrent motif.

" generate traffic to a site that has few visitors."

You're obviously a newcomer here. You must think that everyone in the world is ambitious. Sorry. That's not the case.

I've received a number of requests to appear on the radio and to speak in public. Turned them all down.

I've been asked to write for pay on a couple of well-known sites. The money would be welcome, but not the visibility.

Never once in the seven year history of this site have I asked anyone to place a link to Cannonfire in their blogroll. Everyone who does link to it does so against my stated wishes -- and they know it.

Cannonfire was one of the few blogs listed on Raw Story's blogroll. On the left, most bloggers would KILL for that.

I asked Raw Story to remove the link -- in fact, I FOUGHT with them to remove it! (Contact Raw Story. Someone there should confirm.)

I've also repeatedly asked Memeorandum to delist my site.

I get depressed on the rare occasions when the major media try to quote me. Just recently, Adrienne Jeffries, a reporter for the the New York Observer made a respectful attempt to talk to me. She seemed friendly. I told her to fuck off.

As a point of honor, I've deliberately insulted everyone who has ever tried to be my friend or associate. Just ask Brad Friedman, Larisa Alexandrovna, Lambert at Corrente or Daniel Hopsicker.

I do not network or socialize or advertise.

All liberal bloggers desperate to increase readership go out of their way to kiss the asses of Markos Moulitsas, Josh Marshall and Arianna Huffington. I've heaped opprobrium on Moulitsas and Huffington way, way, WAY more often than I've gone after Andrew Breitbart, Ann Coulter or Drudge. I still kind of like Marshall, even though I've gone after him as well.

In 2008, the Obama cultists came to hate me. If I were desperate for big numbers, I would have stayed on their good side.

Pretty soon thereafter, I went out of my way to piss off the PUMA folk. Some of them accused me of being a secret agent for Obama.

In short, I may be the only blogger in the history of the game who has tried his damnedest to keep stats DOWN. (Except on a very few stories -- and the "Case Closed" post was not one of them.)

I write to write. No other reason. This blog makes no money. I trust you know already that Google adsense is a joke.

Look, you obviously seem to enjoy pigeonholing people. But on both the right and the left, you will occasionally find individuals who resist categorization and abjure collaboration.

Groups are for stupes and all isms are prisons. My only ambition is to gainsay consensus. If a mob shouts X, find some reason to shout "NOT X" -- otherwise, where's the fun?

Pete Town said...

Now that I read that this guy thought a 17 year old was a woman in her 40s I understand this blog! This guy is as gullible as they come. NO 17 YEAR OLD IS THAT GOOD! (and I started college a 16)

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dupe Guckert said... forgot to mention BANISHING some of your biggest fans and readers, anti-partnering you've done with those blogs once considered peers, and general ornery nature (for a social media entity, Joe, you're quite the misanthrope. But yeah we keep reading because you keep connecting the dots)

My only complaint is that the ball-sackers and other repugs wont read a thesaurus. really, is 'dupes' the best you can do??

lastly, "I may be the only blogger in the history of the game who has tried his damnedest to keep stats DOWN." one of the only... but there are others Joe, almost as ornery and cantankerous as you (but no appreciation of Mahler)

Jerome said...

"I despise Obama. But I won't try to damage his administration (or a Republican administration). . ."

That, Joseph, is what keeps me coming back here each and every day--because I know that when you state an opinion it's an honestly held one, and so, on those rare occasions that I disagree with you, I am obliged to take a close look at my own position. That's a truly valuable service, almost non-existent elsewhere.
As to Congressman Weiner's confession, I am flabbergasted, bewildered and repelled by it.

Anonymous said...

"No-one can deny that a "Get Weiner" conspiracy existed."

There was no conspiracy. You made it all up. Your story changed as many times as you changed conspiracy theories.

The blame lies with Weiner and no one else. Now is the time to stop dragging other people into this.

- wodun

Anonymous said...

Lol you sure think a lot of yourself. You think anyone cares if you apologize to anyone? If anything you should apologize to your family for being a creepy Internet Cyber-pervert.

Anonymous said...


Lots of things stink to high heaven on this one. It felt like playing poker with marked cards all the way along. Still does. Interesting that he hasnt resigned if such a picture exists. After all he is now just a puppet - if he does anything ot annoy his masters that picture can come out.


Joseph Cannon said...

Pete: Turns out I wasn't the only one she fooled; she had other online paramours who were absolutely flabbergasted to learn the truth.

If she could see your missive, she would first correct your grammar -- hers always managed to be impeccable, even when she typed at lightning speed -- and then she would make a witty joke at your expense. In Russian.

Truth be told, I can't be sure that she was 17 or that the photo she sent me was genuine. Maybe she really was 44. But if she was 17 at the time we first spoke -- well, imagine Lisa Simpson at 17, mixed with a bit of those devilish "Eve" girls from that early X-Files episode.

Y'know what's weird? I'd love to talk with her again (though not romantically). She'd by over 30 now. Hard to imagine.

glennmcgahee said...

When I read the woman's statement and saw her pictures that were sent to Wiener and then heard her say that she was concerned for her reputation as a "future nurse" so she contacted Brietbart, ALARM BELLS STARTED RINGING IN MY HEAD! Of course, he's a horny old guy, of course he'd respond tpo her pics, calling him HOT and kissing into the camera. SHE DID CONTACT HIM FIRST!
I say SET-UP! Easy to do when you're dealing with someone who probably has image issues. Growing up short and scrawny and funny looking.(I know about that so I can say it).

Mr. Mike said...

Did the lady in question receive the photo or not? I haven't seen an answer to that. Also like you I thought the undie photo was someone shaking the tree to see what would fall out, but since Rep. Weiner admits to it ...

Either way, it's mission accomplished for the Dark Side, Weiner is besmirched and Breitbart gets his bonafides as a resource for cable news.

When will democrats learn that they have to be better than Caesar's wife?

Joseph Cannon said...

Mr Mike, it was established at the outset that Gennette never received the crotch shot.

"shaking the tree to see what would fall out" -- that's a pretty amusing way to put it. Who'd a thunk that the oak was so mighty? Even the Weiner despisers seem flummoxed by that.

As for Breitbart -- he is more vulnerable now than ever before. The press conference made clear that he has established a close relationship with Mr. Hugh Bris. You know what happens to HIS friends.

Glenn: Any woman concerned for her reputation as a future anything would not come forward to discuss a private online relationship.

Anonymous said...

so your theory is that there are much worse pics of weiner out there which is why he copped to the current ones? hardly a vindication...

Mr. Mike said...

Hugh Bris?
Any relation to Bris Mohel?

b said...

If the other photo - the one Weiner seems to have been blackmailed with - does come out, and it does show his penis, then the world will know that whatever was under those grey underpants was NOT his penis.

That's unless, of course, his wedding tackle is at least 15 times the average volume of the male member and starts on one side of his body rather than in the middle. Which I think is unlikely.

If I'm wrong, and the crotch shot shows it in its flaccid state, then when it's erect he could probably balance a plate on it and use it as an umbrella.

Anyway, that's him out of the NY mayoral race, just as Strauss-Kahn is out of the French presidential race. Politics is dirty. Hold the front page. Who's next?

Joseph Cannon said...

Anon: The existence of at least one "worse" pic is not theoretical. Breitbart stated it. Furthermore, his statement today to CBS News verifies that he is threatening Weiner with its release.

b: I think pretty much all observers, even the Weiner-haters, are stunned by the sheer, uh, heft involved. It DOES look fake in the photo. That said, you must keep in mind that these cameras use wide lenses that distort perspective.

THAT said....yeesh!

Trochilus said...

So . . . you say you believe that Andrew Brietbart was in complete control of Congressman Andrew Weiner, arising out of the possession of an extremely revealing photo of Weiner, and that as a result Weiner was compelled to admit to having posted the "bulging underwear shot."

Notwithstanding that it is obvious from the number of appearances of words and phrses such as, "fair to presume," "could be" and "probably" at key points in your post, I'll accept that this theory is your sincere belief, as was your original theory, apparently.

It is built on a mountain of very shaky conjecture, but you do say you believe that it is true. That being the case, when will you be calling for the resignation of Congressman anthony Weiner? After all, if Breitbart is in such control of the man that he could "force" him to confess to such a sleazy act, then you must conclude that he (Breitbart) could also, going forward, easily induce the Congressman to take positions on public policy matters, and cast votes, that he would otherwise NEVER, EVER do.

Hey . . . maybe that is exactly why Breitbart is NOT calling for Weiner's immediate resignation. Maybe you should demand that Weiner should be quickly removed from office, as he is a Member who has been completely compromised.

If you disagree, please tell me where I'm wrong.

Many of us will be looking forward to your demand.

Joseph Cannon said...

Troch: When will I demand Weiner's resignation? Never.

I never demanded Mark Foley's resignation, either -- although I was one of the few people talking about his much more important history as a key aide to an S&L wheeler-dealer named Roy Talmo. In Foley's case, there were also links to the notorious Mel Sembler. And drug abuse. Still, I never called for his resignation, and was actually a tad sorry to see him go. Politically, he was more moderate than are many current Republicans.

And I never demanded Dennis Hastert's resignation. True, I got a lot of giggles out of the fact that he lived with another man in a J. Edgar and Clyde sort of arrangement. Meanwhile, his wife, on her rare visits to D.C., was made to stay by herself in a hotel -- even on Valentine's Day.

Yeah, that living arrangement was amusing. Even you must admit it. But it had no bearing on policy issues -- except if we consider Hastert's voting record on gay rights.

I never event thought about calling for his resignation.

On only one occasion has this blog published a desire for public official to resign. The target was Barack Obama.

As for Breitbart's power: He himself has just now admitted to CBS News that he will not make further releases as long as he thinks we're headed down the right road. So his own words reek of at least SOME power.

Does this give him power over policy? I don't think it reaches that far, but only time will tell. If Weiner makes sharply uncharacteristic policy decisions, then we'll know the score.

Anonymous said...

Your one crazy black chopper picture taker. Seek help

Anonymous said...

"Anon: The existence of at least one "worse" pic is not theoretical. Breitbart stated it. Furthermore, his statement today to CBS News verifies that he is threatening Weiner with its release."

so you grant there is a 'worse' picture then the current one. how does this vindicate weiner in the least? we now know by his admission that the original picture is his. and we now know there is a worse picture out there that he doesn't want released. so now we know he is creepier then we first thought.

just because breitbart threatened to release the other photo if weiner did not come clean does not make weiner the victim here. he still posted these pics.

the mental gymnastics you have to go through to try and absolve this guy are pretty remarkable.

Joseph Cannon said...

Anon, although I reserve the right to delete anonymous comments (and have done so even when those comments offered praise), I let yours go through to prove a point.

Whenever these issues come up, I encounter readers with "reading comprehension" problems. Those problems affect people on both the right and the left; its a universal phenomenon.

You write:

"how does this vindicate weiner in the least?"

I never said that he was vindicated. Citation?

In fact, I suggested from the near beginning that Weiner was worried about other photos sent to or taken by other women. That supposition has proven true.

Let's look at my actual words, as opposed to the words which you are hallucinating:


"I don't believe that scenario. I accept every part of his confession except for the statement about the night of the 27th."

I still don't believe that any man (let alone a congressman) would -- knowingly and non-anonymously -- send a crotch shot to a woman he does not know and whose reaction he cannot predict. Via a system which makes ALL sent images public. At a time when he knows that enemies are watching his every tweet.

I just don't think that's possible.

I think he confessed to it because he was forced to confess to a lot of worse stuff. If he still maintained innocence re: the event of the 27th, the matter would drag on and on -- and Breitbart would carry out his threat to release the very explicit photo.

Got it, now? I don't ask you to agree with the above sentiment. But don't mischaracterize it.

I swear, people like you (and such people exist in all political flavors) see words on the screen or the page that aren't there.

Many think that no-one would ever confessed to something he did not actually do. But this happens all the time, especially in plea deals.

I recently read that one-quarter of convicts declared innocent due to new DNA evidence had previously "confessed" to crimes, apparently because copping a plea seemed the easier course. You know what's REALLY weird? In a surprising number of cases, people who made false confessions came to believe that they were genuinely guilty!

Joseph Cannon said...

"Your one crazy black chopper picture taker"

This is true. I once did take a picture of a black chopper. A Harley. Then I airbrushed the gas tank. It was the usual skulls and shit -- nothing too crazy.

Trochilus said...

The existence of at least one "worse" pic is simply not proof in any respect that it somehow induced Congressman Weiner to confess to posting a photo that he did not post.

It is pure conjecture on your part that what you have posited is what actually happened. It is a presumption that you have made, I believe, because you are unwilling to accept the fact that your original tendentious theory about how the hack "happened," was simply incorrect.

The full confession by Congressman Weiner that he did in fact post that photo, is indeed proof that he did it. Many of us correctly believed right from the start that was what had happened . . . that he was lying, and he eventually had to admit it.

The proof was indeed mounting, and witnesses alleging similar flirting or suggestive contacts from him were beginning to come out of the woodwork.

Also, he refused to ask for a law enforcement investigation. He had supposedly hired a security consultant or firm to investigate, yet the NY Times found out from questioning the CEO of yFrog that the consultant had not even asked the firm for any information regarding the alleged hack!

You may actually "believe" you are correct, but when, as it does in this case, the evidence points overwhelmingly to the fact that he did it, that ought to at least give you pause. Just because you can posit one possible scenario (and a highly implausible one at that), is simply not a basis for claiming that it is what happened.

StewartIII said...

NRO| Re: Conspiracy Theories Revisited

Joseph Cannon said...

Stewie, thanks for this. I'm going to blog about it. Looks like Breitbart has a conspiracy theory of his own -- that Anthony Weiner masterminded some sort of "get Breitbart" crusade via Kos. And it seems to be bullshit. I'm contacting some people at Kos right now (while holding my nose: Everyone knows how I feel about Moulitsas).

Mr. Hugh Bris is already leading his new pal Breitbart into treacherous territory. Bris tends to do things like that.

Anonymous said...

"Mr. Hugh Bris is already leading his new pal Breitbart into treacherous territory. Bris tends to do things like that."

You, of all people, Joe, should certainly know.

Joseph Cannon said...

Hubris? Moi? By what standard?

I lack all ambition. I seek no power. I ask others NOT to link to this blog. I don't advertise my site. I've spurned and insulted every blogger who has ever tried to befriend me. In the past, I've often turned down requests to speak in public or to write for other sites. And I sure as hell would never commandeer someone else's press conference.

Do you have a definition of "hubris" that differs from the one we all learned in school?

I'll cop to the misanthropy charge, though.

Doubting Richard said...

Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in the dictionary?

Wow, I have never read anything so delusional that was intended to be taken seriously. Well, not since I read transcripts of some of Bill Clinton's excuses for various misdeeds.

Anonymous said...


lickspittle apologists have all went home my man

apparently you didn't get the memo

i suggest you try a nice calm cup of tea to get rid of those nightmare conspiracy theorys you harbor

have a good one