TBogg

Crouching Bunny, Hidden Conspiracy

Earlier in the week playboy.com  published an online story by Guy Cimbalo called So Right it’s Wrong wherein Guy advances his top ten list of conservative women he would like to "hatefuck".  Within hours, following complaints, Playboy pulled the story because, you might say, they realized that they went a fuck too far. Now hatefucking is not to be confused with "angry sex", "make-up sex", or even "your hot mom is the Governor sex" (Alaska only); it’s about power and violence and misogyny, although I asked around to several youthful acquaintances of mine and their iunderstanding falls more in line with what I thought it was as well Amelia’s interpretation. But, whatever, we’re well past that discussion now. Anyway it will come as no surprise that not too many people defended So Right It’s Wrong outside of a few random "free speech gives Cimbalo the right to be a douchebag" posts.

Under normal circumstances this would be yesterdays news with post published, then pulled, outrage vented and then we move on to the next intertubular fist-shaking blogasm. But no controversy these days is worth it’s weight in bloggy-clicks without a good conspiracy theory that allows bloggers big and small to play citizen journamalist.

Back when our story began, AOL blogger Tommy Christopher (who is AOL’s likeable liberal by virtue of the fact that he has been "featured on Bill O’Reilly, Hot Air, Red State, The College Politico, The Daily Kos, The Huffington Post, and even NewsBusters") posted on the hatefuck list, came up with something called the "bro code" (an internet tradition that Playboy was apparently not aware of. Nor was I), unleashed the awesome unstoppable power of the DeathTwitter upon Playboy, then wrote a mash note to the Conservative women he would totally respect in the morning after some sweet TommyX-lovin’, did the twitter victory dance…. and then he got fired by AOL.

Enter the dragon rabbit.

Newsbusters:

The evidence is stacking up quite high that AOL News fired liberal writer Tommy Christopher today due to his repeated attempts to get coverage of the Playboy attack list on AOL’s Politics Daily. Christopher had first attempted to post this criticism of Playboy’s sick list the day it was published on their website. However, he was surprised to find that shortly after putting his article on Politics Daily it was deleted by an editor.

His surprise stemmed from the fact that in his two years of writing for the site not one other post had ever been deleted by an editor.

[…]

As Christopher notes in the statement he released to NewsBusters he was a productive and successful writer for AOL. He is a well respected, widely read, and widely linked writer. His stories and opinions have been featured on Bill O’Reilly, Hot Air, Red State, The College Politico, The Daily Kos, The Huffington Post, and even NewsBusters. It seems highly unlikely that AOL fired him for lack of performance and it is important to note that nobody has claimed that as of now.

With all of this it seems that coincidental timing is an extremely hard sell for why Tommy Christopher was fired by AOL News today. It appears that Christopher was intent on covering a story which he found to be particularly important but that Aol News had "internally decided" was off limits.

Has the fact that AOL’s parent company, Time Warner, has a business relationship with Playboy affected their editorial decisions? After all Time Warner is a major national distributor of Playboy TV through their cable company.

Special Ed:

Tommy has been a friend for quite a while, and a semi-regular guest on my daily show.  He and I do not agree on most topics, but Tommy is a good opinion journalist and one of AOL’s few that actually does traditional reporting.  He goes into Washington DC on his own to attend White House press briefings, occasionally getting to ask a question and providing first-person reporting for AOL-PD.  That seems to me to be a valuable commodity for any political website, a marker of relevance that one does not lightly toss aside.

Many people do not know that AOL has actually conducted a massive turnover in its staff under new editor Melinda Hennenberger.  Our friends Caleb Howe and Mark Impomeni have also gotten their walking papers more than two weeks ago.  Both are good, solid writers, and brought a conservative perspective to AOL-PD that now the terrific Matt Lewis has to provide all on his own.  Tommy could have been part of that revamping, but he appeared to have survived it — and again, why get rid of someone who has a spot inside the White House?

Wheels within wheels, man.

But wait. We already know that Caleb Howe was fired ( and that was even before this). And then Denise Williams was sacked. And Diana Winkley.  And Caleb popped up to say:

@CalebHowe – yeah we all got shitcanned.

So, what the hell? It’s like the Axis of AOL/Playboy/EmmEssEmm are killing off everybody just like those altar-humping guys in the  Da Vinci Code except this is about keeping the secret that… Playboy objectifies women.

Obviously these bloggers are unaware of the fact that You. Don’t. Fuck. With. The. Bunny or you can kiss your bloggy career goodbye. Although it would be cool if Hef sent out Playmate ninja assasination teams to kill you which would be much more awesomer to tell your friends than having to admit that you got let go by AOL. I mean, who hasn’t?

So how does our conspiracy story end? Not with a fingerbang, but with a whimper.

 Jason Linkins, HuffPo:

MORE UPDATES: Melinda Henneberger, at last, responds:

Does it make a lick of sense to you that I would fire anyone for standing up for women, or for taking on that disgusting story in Playboy? [ED. NOTE: Uhm…no, Melinda, it doesn’t, which is sort of why I asked the question!] The bloggers for the old AOL site, Political Machine, weren’t retained for the new site, Politics Daily, which has only been in existence for the last five weeks, and which we’re just staffing up. Sorry so dull, but there’s nothing more to it than that.

Um, oh. Well, uh, that’s…. different. Okay.

Hey! I bet you didn’t know that the EmmEssEmm is hiding the fact that Muslim Obama likes foreign terrorist condiments! It’s true! This guy I know twittered about this other twitterer who retweeted this girl’s tweet about this thing that she saw  YouTube that totally got taken down and disappeared.

Wheels within wheels, man…

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