Friday, June 25, 2010


I became vaguely aware of Dave Weigel a couple of months ago, as a putatively libertarian writer covering the right for the Washington Post. I had no interest in his primary line of work, but I kept seeing retweets of pretty funny stuff he'd written, so I added him on twitter a couple of weeks back. That finally compelled me to add his blog's RSS feed to my Bloglines account yesterday.'s he's gone.

Naturally, I fully support his ouster purely due to his misuse and misappropriation of the term "ratfucker." But among all of the sympathetic libertarian commentary I see today, all of it so far written by personal friends, I have yet to be convinced yet that all of the conservatives glad he lost his job are wrong. I'm glad to see that most of the Reason Hit & Run commentors seem to agree.

What is a purported libertarian doing on Journolist (where he worked behind the scenes to coordinate a media strategy to pass the health care bill!); voting for Nader, Kerry, and Obama; and, on top of those substantive issues, run around as a best pal of Matthew Yglesias, Spencer Ackerman, and Ezra Klein?

That latter issue is the most interesting to me, given assorted things I've read recently about the incestous social relationships in DC. Why would any libertarian associate with Ygelasias, who calls them cruel sociopaths pretty much weekly? Spencer Ackerman has somehow turned into a decent reporter on defense issues the last couple of years, but as far as I could tell from his internet persona and self admissions was a completely loathesome piece of shit prior to that. Klein's the biggest, if not the brightest, advocate for an increased welfare state among his crew.

Julian Sanchez is another libertarian "offender" in this area; as far as I can tell his sharp focus on surveillance and related civil rights issues has driven him into the arms of full spectrum leftists who agree with him there, if no where, else, as long as they share his taste for pretentious clothing and music.

I, of course, sharply disagree with the politics of pretty much all of my friends. But we mostly don't discuss them, and they certainly aren't our jobs. Advocates trying to move public opinion and government policy can be compromised by such friendships.

As usual, Matthew Yglesias comes out looking the best; he's clearly not afraid to call his friends evil people just because it might piss them off. Will I find out next week that he's godfather to the daughter of "moron" Jonah Goldberg?