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Anonymity is the political foundation of our traditions

Greenwald on the scourge of anonymity:

[I]t was, after all, Internet bloggers -- using the scourge of anonymity -- who convinced the nation of a slew of harmful conspiracy theories:  Saddam had WMD, an alliance with Al Qaeda, and responsibility for the anthrax mailings.  Anonymity is also what allowed bloggers to smear Richard Jewell, Wen Ho Lee, and Steven Hatfill with totally false accusations that destroyed their lives and reputation, and it's what enabled bloggers to lie to the nation about Jessica Lynch's heroic firefight, countless U.S. airstrikes, and a whole litany of ongoing lies about our current wars.  And remember when anonymous bloggers spewed all sorts of nasty, unaccountable bile about Sonia Sotomayor's intellect and temperament?  Just as Roberts lamented, blogs -- as a result of anonymity -- are the "Wild West of the Internet . . . . like a giant world-wide bathroom wall where you can write anything about anyone."


NOTE Via Lord Eschaton.

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Historiann's picture
Submitted by Historiann on

by "Publius," a pseudonym used by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay. John Dickinson assumed a false indentity to publish Letters from a Farmer (1767-68). Mercy Otis Warren published her pro-Independence plays in the 1770s without attribution, as pseudonymity and anonymity were especially common among women writers. Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl was published under the name Linda Brent, not Harriet Jacobs.

Why do they hate America? More urgently from my perspective, why do they just make sh!t up on the fly like this? But I guess that's like asking why dogs lick themselves.