An Open Letter to Charles Johnson


Charles

On Sunday, The New York Times Magazine featured an article on Charles Johnson, whose website — littlegreenfootballs — had for years been very popular among conservatives and among all those who believed that Islamic terror and Islamic religious totalitarianism were the greatest expressions of contemporary evil. The reason for the article was that Mr. Johnson has made a 180-degree turn and is now profoundly, even stridently, anti-right. This is my letter to him.

Dear Charles:

As you know, over the years, I was so impressed with your near-daily documentation of developments in the Islamist world that I twice had you on my national radio show — both times face to face in my studio. And you, in turn, periodically cited my radio show and would tell your many readers when they could hear you on my show.

So it came as somewhat of a shock to see your 180-degree turn from waging war on Islamist evil to waging war on your erstwhile allies and supporters on the right. You attempted to explain this reversal on Nov. 30, 2009, when you published “Why I Parted Ways With The Right.”

You offered 10 reasons, and I would like to respond to them.

First, as disappointed as I am with your metamorphosis, I still have gratitude for all the good you did and I respect your change as a sincere act of conscience. But neither this gratitude nor this respect elevates my regard for your 10 points. They are well beneath the intellectual and moral level of your prior work. They sound like something Keith Olbermann would write if he were given 10 minutes to come up with an attack on conservatives.

1. Support for fascists, both in America (see: Pat Buchanan, Robert Stacy McCain, etc.) and in Europe (see: Vlaams Belang, BNP, SIOE, etc.).

Associating the American right with fascism is done only by leftist ideologues and propagandists, not by serious critics. It is akin to calling everyone on the left a Communist. As for the specific examples, forgive me, but in 28 years as a talk show host and columnist, I had never heard of Robert Stacy McCain or of Vlaams Belang. Nor did the BNP or SIOE register on my intellectual radar screen.

I looked them up and found that McCain is a former editor at the Washington Times charged with racist views. So what?

The BNP is the British National Party, a racist group that in the last U.K. general election received 0.7 percent of the popular vote. So what?

SIOE stands for Stop Islamisation of Europe. I perused its website, and while there are ideas I disagree with (e.g., the group does not believe that there are any Muslim moderates), the desire to stop the “Islamization” of Europe is hardly fascist; it is more likely animated by anti-fascism.

Vlaams Belang is a Flemish nationalist political party that won 17 out of 150 seats in Belgium ‘s Chamber of Representatives. From what I could gather from a cursory glance at the party’s platform, it is an ultra-nationalist Flemish party, many of whose language protection and secessionist ideals are virtually identical to those of the Party Quebecois, a party passionately supported by the left.

In any event, what do any of these groups have to do with mainstream American right institutions such the Hoover Institution, the Heritage Foundation or the American Enterprise Institute; or with mainstream conservative publications and websites such as the National Review, the Weekly Standard, Townhall.com or Commentary; or with mainstream American conservatives such as Bill Kristol, Thomas Sowell, Hugh Hewitt, Charles Krauthammer, George Will, Bill Bennett, Michael Medved, Dennis Prager, as well as Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh?

2. Support for bigotry, hatred, and white supremacism (see: Pat Buchanan, Ann Coulter, Robert Stacy McCain, Lew Rockwell, etc.).

I agree with the late William Buckley that some of Pat Buchanan’s views could be construed as anti-Jewish; I don’t know who McCain or Lew Rockwell represent among mainstream conservatives; and to label Ann Coulter a white supremacist (or bigot) is slander.

3. Support for throwing women back into the Dark Ages, and general religious fanaticism (see: Operation Rescue, anti-abortion groups, James Dobson, Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, the entire religious right, etc.).

“The entire religious right” wants to throw “women back into the dark ages?” As a religious (Jewish) conservative, perhaps I am a member of that group, and I find the charge absurd. The one example you give — anti-abortion — is invalid. To those who regard the unborn as worthy of life (except in the almost never occurring case of it being a threat to its mother’s life), opposition to abortion is no more anti-woman than opposition to rape is anti-man. The only people who wish to throw women into the dark ages are the people you, Charles, used to fight. That is why your change of heart has actually hurt the battle for women’s dignity and equality.

4. Support for anti-science bad craziness (see: creationism, climate change denialism, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, James Inhofe, etc.).

So, Charles, all those scientists who question or deny that human activity is causing a global warming that will render much of life on earth extinct are “anti-science?”

Has the possibility occurred to you that those who are skeptical of what they consider hysteria cherish science at least as much as you do? In fact, they suspect that — for political, social, financial, psychological and/or herd-following reasons — it is the “global warming” hysterics who are more likely to be anti-science.

Activist scientists, liberal media and leftist interest groups brought us the false alarm of an imminent heterosexual AIDS pandemic in America , the false alarm about silicon breast implants leading to disease and the nonsense about how dangerous nuclear power is. They were anti-science, not us skeptics who have been right every time I can think of.

5. Support for homophobic bigotry (see: Sarah Palin, Dobson, the entire religious right, etc.).

This charge is particularly ugly. It appears that you have decided to fight all the “hate” you allege to be on the right with your own hate. Why exactly is it “homophobic bigotry” to want to maintain the millennia-old definition of marriage as the union of men and women? The hubris of those who not only want to change the definition of the most important institution in society but believe everyone who ever advocated male-female marriage was a bigot — meaning everyone who ever lived before you, Charles — is as breathtaking as it is speech-suppressing.

6. Support for anti-government lunacy (see: tea parties, militias, Fox News, Glenn Beck, etc.).

What you call “anti-government lunacy” most Americans regard as preserving the greatest protector of individual liberty — limited government.

7. Support for conspiracy theories and hate speech (see: Alex Jones, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Birthers, creationists, climate deniers, etc.).

I am no fan of Alex Jones, who, coincidentally, has attacked me on his website as a “Jewish propagandist.” But please. The amount of hate speech in one Keith Olbermann commentary dwarfs any 12 months of Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck. In any event, the real irony here is that before your inexplicable change, it was you who devoted years to documenting the greatest amount of hate speech on earth today — that coming from within the Islamic world. If you still hated hate speech, you would still be doing that important work.

As for believing in conspiracy theories, your new team wins hands down — from multiple assassins of JFK to the American government being behind 9-11 (it was even believed by a high-ranking member of the Obama administration) to the war in Iraq waged on behalf of Halliburton.

8. A right-wing blogosphere that is almost universally dominated by raging hate speech (see: Hot Air, Free Republic , Ace of Spades, etc.).

From what I have seen, your examples do not justify your charge. Moreover, for every right-wing “raging hate” speech website, there are probably three on the left. The major conservative sites are overwhelmingly rational and devoid of “raging hate.” Given my longtime respect for you, Charles, it pains me that it is your list of 10 reasons for abandoning the right that is a prime example of “raging hate.”

9. Anti-Islamic bigotry that goes far beyond simply criticizing radical Islam, into support for fascism, violence, and genocide (see: Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, etc.).

I saw Pamela Geller’s site (The New York Times Magazine article about you cited it — Atlas Shrugs — and mentioned nothing remotely approaching your charges against her or her site) and I’ve interviewed Robert Spencer. Your charges against them only cheapen the words “fascism,” violence” and “genocide.”

10. Hatred for President Obama that goes far beyond simply criticizing his policies, into racism, hate speech, and bizarre conspiracy theories (see: witch doctor pictures, tea parties, Birthers, Michelle Malkin, Fox News, World Net Daily, Newsmax, and every other right wing source).

The charge is a lie. Period. Those who cannot argue with the right always accuse it of racism. It used to work, Charles. But it is increasingly obvious to all but fellow leftists that the charge is specious. Opposition to President Obama has nothing to do with his race. Indeed, he continues to be more popular than his policies.

When you were on the politically and morally right side, Charles, you provided massive evidence for your positions. Now you throw verbal bombs. What happened? If you would like to tell me on my radio show, you are invited to do so. I miss you.

  • Susan Salisbury

    It is so exhausting always fighting the left. Truly. I wonder if that isn't the real reason. There are so many rewards for being on the left. Government contracts and subsidies from the Tides foundation. I know nothing of why Charles Johnson decided to switch, but I admit, at times it is tempting to go with the flow. But as Sarah Palin (she of the rightwing hate speech group who proved her hatred for women by giving birth to a downs syndrome child) said. Only dead fish go with the flow.

  • dee cee

    What kind of world would we live in if we accepted 'go with the flow' of the most damning cruelty to mankind, loss of freedom and morality? Uninspired to create and invent, speechless and helpless.. slaves to the government in charge.

  • http://infinitemonkeyatthekeyboard.blogspot.com RichardLKent

    What happened? Charles has become an autotheist and has decided he cannot stand competition.

  • shane comeback

    Maybe the Saudis paid him off. Wouldn't be the first time someone "saw the light" for the right amount of buksheesh.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Haarumph Haarumph

    I have observed other credible intelligent people ( very few-6, actually) make an abrupt left turn. In one case it was a surrender to homosexuality, in another a personal war with God over a painful injustice suffered in youth, and one was "charmed" into the good graces of the left exchanging the difficult vigilance of defending Truth for an overwhelming financial reward.

  • http://hubpages.com/profile/maven101 Larry Conners

    Johnson's tirade against the Right amounts to throwing enough crap against the wall some is likely to stick school of thought…. This guy has been a closet progressive for a long time and used the justified anger of the American Right after 9-11 to line his pockets. The Islamic threat has diminished recently so now he feels comfortable slamming those who have supported his web site…Time for him to MoveOn…

  • texaszman

    I stopped reading Johnson's Childish Rants ages ago. I don't know what happened, but he obviously had a serious event change his mental faculties.

    • Bert

      Exactly.

  • ubberkafir

    He's been bought and paid for by cair.

  • Aeggemam

    Why bother. Johnson got a new girlfriend who is a raving leftist, he has got to match it, to get some. That is my conclusive theory, the science is settled.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/ElroyJetson CallaTeYa!

      …science is settled–that's funny.

    • gungy

      There's something to that. Ted Turner became completely unglued from the time he started being an item with Jane Fonda. Before that he had a few reasonable right leaning bones in his body. Now they're all in his head. And we won;t even mention A. Huffington

  • http://redeemthetime.net Dave

    Lgf used to be one of my goto sites years ago, it turned into an anti-christian hate site around 2007.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/KingShamus KingShamus

    People change their minds. People even change their minds and go to the left. What Charles Johnson has done is change his mind and veer off into the faith of Charles Johnson. The beautiful thing about worshiping yourself is that you are always right.

    Look at the comments over at LGF. They toe the CJ line and when they don't, they get banned. This from a guy who is supposed to be a big free speech supporter. Thats the other great thing about worshiping yourself-you never have to tolerate dissent from the little people.

    Charles Johnson is a thin-skinned tin god. Eventually he will be reduced to playing in a sand-box occupied only by him. Until then, he's going to go down kicking and flailing at anybody and everybody who goes against him.

    Mr. Prager's letter was better than fair and civil. Unfortunately, I don't think it will be answered by Johnson with anything besides intolerance and incivility.

  • http://sioe.wordpress.com Stephen Gash

    I would like to reaffirm, there are no moderate Muslims. This is why the Taliban and Al-Qaeda exists. If the Taliban and Al-Qaeda profess a perverse form of Islam then the "moderate" Muslims would have wiped them out long ago in the name of the "true" Islam.

    Instead, "moderate" Muslims are content to see non-Muslims sacrifice their lives in the worthless cause of defending "moderate" Muslims, who in return express nothing, but ingratitude.

    All Muslims want to see the worldwide Caliphate, which is why they are Muslims. Anything goes to achieve the Caliphate and the most honourable thing a Muslim can do is to lie to non-Muslims to attain the furtherence of Islam. It is called Taqiyya and here is an excellent description of it http://tool.donation-net.net/Images/Email/1097/Ta

  • Jep

    You are missing a person who doesn’t exist Dennis. Before 911, Rathergate etc gave Johnson some name recognition amongst polibloggers, he ran an obscure site that ranted against all religion, creationism etc. Some bloggers kept screen shots of his posts from several years ago before Johnson removed them. He was always a lefty and slightly unhinged, and even in its heydey LGF’s comments threads were full of vitriole which he himself should – by his own standards classify as hate speech par excellence…and then brand himself a fascist by reason of association. He long ago said he believed bin Laden was dead and the government is covering it up. And he recently said the jihadi threat is less of a concern. So that, with Obama in the WH means he is now feels safe enough reverting to type – a loopy lefty who hates anyone who is not pro left, with a particular distaste for anyone who is not pro left and professes a religion. Any religion. Now that Islamofascism is under control in his view, he’s just back to his own pet hate: non pro left Christians (such hatred sadly common amongst collapsed Catholics such as Johnson and theologically liberal Protestants)

    BTW McCain was falsely charged with racist views and the ultra nationalist Flemish party is often the only party in Belgium publically supporting Israel.

  • Philipp Renard

    His reply to #10 is interesting. I posted on LGF that he was telling lies about people he disagreed with when the truth would do just as well, and I was immediately banned from his site. with that in mind I doubt he will take Dennis' offer to come back on his show.

  • http://supportyourlocalgunfighter.com Shawn

    Dennis, this is a brilliant piece, and a terrific refutation of Johnson's ten reasons for parting with the Right. As a former commenter at LGF – before I was banned for disagreeing with Johnson – I can tell you that the Charles Johnson you had on your radio show no longer exists. Expediency is his modus operandi now, and with the Left in power, he has jumped on their bandwagon. If the Right regains power, he is just as likely to swing back to "conservatism." In the end, it is all about Charles.

  • http://www.thepolitic.com Mark Peters

    Dear Mr. Prager,

    If you take the time (and you'd need a lot of it) to go back through the last two to three years of LGF posts, you will get a sense of where or how Mr. Johnson went off the rails. I consider his shift to be borne of two ideals.

    1. Mr. Johnson has demonstrated unwavering support for "science." (I use quotes because AGW, one of Charles' main pro-science claw posts, has since been shown to be nothing short of politics if not outright deception and abuse of the public trust. Charles selectively supports science. He'll disregard the science that demonstrates abortion harms women, as an example. I digress.) The tipping point for Mr. Johnson, it seems, was the push by influential Christians in America to include intelligent design in school curriculum. From there, he has embarked on a war against any and all religious causes and, further, begun to paint with very broad strokes, as his list demonstrates. Charles is no longer simply anti-Islam; he is anti-religion and has dumped Christianity into the same category as Islam. If you read his posts, Mr. Prager, you will clearly see that Mr. Johnson has landed in the realm of the Dawkinses and Hitchenses of the world where, basically, believers of any Theistic faith are humanity's greatest enemy. Mr. Johnson is very much a "New Atheist."

    2. Racism, or Mr. Johnson's perception of racism, is worse than Islamism. His anti-Islamist crusade hit a noticeable snag when people of great courage in Europe started to actually do something about Islamisation rather then merely talk, as is Mr. Johnson's wont. Charles publicly crossed wires with the folks at Gates of Vienna on the nature of, and solidarity with, political movements like BNP and Vlaams Belang, and has stridently distanced himself from groups that have chosen immigration reform and other policy measures as a means to fighting the Islamisation of Europe. Noting that BNP and VB are "right-wing" parties, Mr. Johnson was forced, it seems, to abandon the political Right. Again painting with broad strokes, in Mr. Johnson's mind the veins of everyone on the Right run red with Fascism.
    – -
    I stopped reading LGF about three years ago when it was clear that Charles has nothing meaningful to say when it's time to talk solutions to Islamisation rather than simply waxing hatefully about how bad is Islam. His grouping of Christianity and Islam is also completely indefensible.

  • WLT

    LGF was great back in the day, but It has slid into complete irrelevancy over the last 3 years or so. Few of the serious commenters who posted there in the glory days are still active; why bother? I miss it. It must have been quite a shock to Atlas, Spencer and others to find themselves coming under heavy "friendly fire" one day out of a clear blue sky.
    Spencer in particular has done more to educate Americans about the true nature of radical Islam and it's firm rooting in the Koran than anyone else I can think of. Buy his books, read his blog, learn some hard truths.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/bato65 bato65

    Charles is a closeted ghey. So he feels he had no choice but to break with the right.

  • BS1977

    Who cares what Charles thinks? Hardly anyone has ever heard of LGF or Charles Johnson anyway. So he is another fully indoctrinated marxist leftist …now ready to march with Code Pink, MoveOn and Soros…..what an idiot. IF he thinks conservatives are bad, wait until he gets into the alley with Bill Ayers, Cindy SHeehan, Soros, Moore and all the rest of the appalling, horrible leftist whiners and screechers………ugh….just thinking about it makes me sick.

  • BS1977

    Sign the petition: NO KSM trial in NYCity……keep the SOB in Gitmo under military tribunal authority. Make Gitmo his last stop!!!! Stop the liberal PC insanity….no civilian trials for terrorists, foreign enemy combatants, jet bombers or conspirators…….

  • SteveCan

    Charles is a fool … Simple as that!

  • Tyler

    I truly do pity Mr. Johnson – the abrupt and apparently arbitrary slide to the left, and the baseless, crude, rude, low-brow, knuckle-dragging comments and verbal diarrhea may very well indicate some sort of neurological disorder

  • bobopapal

    It seems that Mr. Johnson wants no part of the angry right, such as those who attended tea party rallies with Hitler=Obama signs and other unhinged signs and slogans. Mainstream conservatives brush off these loonies, just as they soft pedal and excuse away every nutty thing Pat Robertson or some other Christian Fundamentalist says. How convenient for him to ignore reality when it doesn't advance his side of the argument.

    • gungy

      What a hypocrite you are. For 8 years we've had nothing but "Bush is Hilter" and "Torture Cheney" from the Left. That was ok. Now "Dissent is the highest form of Patriotism" isn't even admissable. All the idiot progressives have scraped it off their cars.

    • http://www.whamproductions.com whamprod

      I think that the masses of independent voters in Massachusetts who turned out to vote Scott Brown into The People's seat pretty much put paid to that kind of looney left "argumentum ad Teabagger." The left, to its political peril, still refuses to acknowledge that the Tea Party phenomenon — despite the occasional hangers on with the "hitler" signs (just like we see at leftist rallies) — is actually an uprising of very much middle of the road, middle Americans who are fed up with "progressives" cram regressive economic and suppressive political policies down their throats.

  • Neecie

    Dear Dennis,
    I love your kind and logical letter but you must remember the quote that is attributed to Jonathan Swift: "It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into." As you pointed out, not one of his arguments makes sense from a logical or factual basis. It is the emotional rant of unstable mind. I suspect desire for sex or psychotropic drugs are the basis for this metamorphosis. All you can do is pray for him and leave him to play with his newfound “friends.” Meanwhile, we adults have to continue the fight for truth.

  • was from

    Hi Dennis,
    Excellent post.
    I have been following Charles ever since his Atari programming days(search 'Little Green Item Selector' for more info)
    I was hoping beyond hope that Charles would abandon this 180º turn but alas, he will not, and therefore I have stopped reading his site.There are others now more worthy to take his place.
    I miss Charles too.

  • mp11

    "That charge is a lie. Period"

    Ever hear of the Obama-is-a-secret-Muslim-who-supports-the-jihadists smear? No? Strange, maybe you should conduct a follow up "research" at Pamela Geller's site or jihadwatch or the other thousands of anti-muslim right wing sites.

    • Radegunda

      Let's hear your list of "thousands of anti-muslim right wing sites."

      I'll make it easy. How about the top 100?

      Then we'll stack up all the Jew-hating, Christian-hating, infidel hating rants and incitements to violence and conquest and world domination that come from Islamic websites AND MOSQUES on a daily basis. Then we'll see who are the hatingest haters.

  • Zooba

    After reading this refutation of CJ’s split, I am more convinced that he is right. I see a lot of the Limbaugh School of Propaganda techniques to counter Johnson’s positions but I think the most egregious is that anyone who thinks differently is on a “new team” of “fellow leftists.” The idea that everybody on the right or left (arbitrary descriptions themselves) all think alike is ludicrous and is probably the most pervasive theme to be taken up by the right. I used to respect conservative thinkers but they’re gone or drowned out by reactionaries. And the whole “well they did it first” argument is laughable. Grow up.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/semus semus

      Come on you never really needed any convincing.

    • Radegunda

      So where are the courageous people on the left who will call out Obama and Pelosi et al. on their ruinous policies, instead of just calling everybody who criticizes those policies a racist or extremist?
      Over the health-care issue, for example, conservatives have cited chapter and verse, over and over, of what's actually in the bills under consideration and what are the likely consequences. In response, practically everybody on the left side of the aisle has simply lobbed ad hominems, saying it was all a raaaacist plot against our poor delicate young black president.
      So who needs to grow up?

  • Clue By Four

    You'll find the source of Charles' "change: back in his posts of 2001 pre the attack on
    9/11.
    It's called following the money. He took the open door opportunity to jump on the Rights
    bandwagon because that's where the scent of money was the strongest.
    He used the excuse after 9/11 to leave posting as a member at Atrios, as the reason for
    the LGF chat blog….when all along he buried his hatred of Bush to chase the cha-ching.
    He never changed, he just buried it deeply as long he was in the rights money train.

  • Steven Zak

    Charles Johnson lurched from the Left to the Right after 9-11 — as did I and many others, like my acquaintance the late Ron Silver — but now has lurched back to the far Left. I’m not a psychiatrist so I won’t even attempt to analyze what lurks in the mind of someone whose inclination for extremes seems stronger than any preference for which particular extreme territory he occupies at any given time.

    But I will say this: Johnson is free to embrace his leftist ideology if that’s what now grabs his fancy, but he should at least have the guts to embrace it without blaming others for supposedly forcing him to do so.

    You either believe in aggressive anti-terrorist foreign policy or you don’t. You believe in free markets or you don’t. To suggest that you would embrace one political philosophy on the merits but that you have been forced to take the diametrically opposed view because conservatives are too mean is not only preposterous but cowardly.

    If you’re a leftist, then have the guts to just be one. Don’t say that others forced you — through pure meanness — into a philosophy that on the merits you wouldn’t be inclined to accept. That’s laughable — and it’s gutless. If you’re going to be a leftist, have the balls to be one on the philosophical merits: Your latest viewpoint is of your own choosing. It’s not forced on you by anyone’s “hate” or meanness (of which there’s plenty to be found on the Left, which makes your anti-conservative charge ring hollow).

    Man up, Johnson, and stop whining like a kid who got pushed around on the playground. You’re a lefty (at least for now). Take responsibility for it.

  • http://theothermccain.com/ R.S. McCain
  • Bruce

    I am not at all familiar with Johnson or his blog so I read Prager's piece w/o any preconceptions. The impression I got from his criticisms of 'the right' is that it was stock lefty boilerplate- nothing original or insightful. He seems to a born lefty who enjoys his koolaide. Let him go.

  • Patrick

    Maybe what we have here is a case similar to that of Andrew Sullivan. Back when Sullivan leaned right, it seemed like half of his blog posts still were related to gay marriage. You could see the train wreck coming, and sure enough, when Bush pushed the federal marriage amendment, Sullivan went apoplectic. A few months later he endorsed Kerry, and all veered left from there. The gay marriage issue trumped everything else for Sullivan. His is a case study of how a strongly held position on one side of the political spectrum can prompt a person to identify with most of the positions on that side.

    I've rarely read LGF (even back when he was on the right I wasn't impressed) so I don't know anything about him or his writings, but is it possible that there's some issue that's deeply personal to Johnson, trumping all other issues, prompting him to veer left? Or perhaps a close friend or loved one whom he's trying to appease? Or something along those lines?

    May be worth looking into – because his "reasons" are atrocious as they are absurd, for an intelligent person. Either he's an intelligent person who's being held captive by some other issue, prompting him to spout absurdities, or perhaps he's just not an intelligent person. Again, I don't know because I've never really read him. But worth looking into.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Hucbald Hucbald

    Well, good – I guess – but I don't think Charles Johnson is worth all of the time you obviously spent on this open letter. His traffic is about 1/4 of what it used to be, and his pogrom of banning anybody who disagrees with him – like me – has rendered LFG a sycophant soup of groveling tools who tiptoe around the site on eggshells. IOW, he just doesn't matter anymore from the perspective of the thinking libertarian-conservative, and his influence is a shadow of what it once was.

    • IoshkaFutz

      Excellent comment. A man is entitled to change his opinions, but when he starts instantly banning those who disagree (even in part), then he has crossed the line into the pathological. I got banned for a "yes, but"… for a "yes, that's true, but…"

      I mean, come on! That's no way to treat anybody, regardless of his ideological position. Even Islam-on-line was more liberal (old European sense) than Charles Johnson.

      You don't like one of my links, so you blast me away?

  • Seek

    Some 25 years ago, David Horowitz had Second Thoughts in moving from Left to Right. Why not, then, likewise credit Charles Johnson with Second Thoughts in his move from Right to Left? Instead of impugning his motives, why not instead try to understand him? He's clearly no fool. The fact is — and I speak as a conservative libertarian — there really are radical demagogues on the Right. And, yes, they should be repudiated.

    • IoshkaFutz

      That's crap. If you're a conservative libertarian then there's no way you can defend Charles Johnson's behavior towards those who disagreed with him. "You say tomato? Sorry, I say tomahto, you're banned!" THAT was Charles Johnson

      And that has nothing to do with one changing his political position (something everyone is obviously entitled to for what else is the purpose of opinion blogs than to change people's positions?). But to blast sharp thinkers, keen minds, excellent writers to smithereens, simply for expressing dissent?

      It's as if (an empowered) Dennis Prager suddenly said: "Sorry Seek, you disagree with my open letter. Get lost Nazi! Banned!"

      That's not politics, not thought, not intelligence… that's pathology.

  • Mark Bensi

    I was registered with Little Green Footballs for a few years and only wrote in occasionally. I started to see a shift coming from Charles Johnson that concerned me deeply. It was his total and unrelenting generalization of all people on the right as being bigots, Homophobes etc. I agree that there is that sort of sentiment out there. But I do also agree with Dennis that it is a small minority. And I fight those who hold such destructive beliefs on a daily basis. My final post to LGF was slightly critical of a comment posted by Charles. As a result my account was blocked and remains so to this day. Simply for disagreeing with Charles. My worry is that whatever has happened to him, he is shutting out reasonable voices such as myself.

  • Don

    I am not on the Right.
    The Right consists primarily of Morons, Comedians, e.g. the brilliant Ann Coulter, Rush, Beck etc. And… some very decent, sincere people of widely diverse views such as David Horowitz, Phyllis Chesler, etc.
    I am not on the Left, primarily because of their Anti Science, Euro centric, White Supremacist world view. Not to mention their dangling of the carrot of legalization in front of the nations, young Poor.
    I am stuck trying to listen to Morons argue with Idiots and trying and hold a responsible position.
    Welcome to the real world.

    • MFS

      Wow! Please be my friend!
      Please. Please. Please

  • Greg

    Damn good points, all of them. I hope Charley feels some shame now. But, I doubt it. I for one quit visiting his site more than two years ago, after he started attacking Vlaams Belang. I knew he was way off base then. I thought he was just trying to impress a leftist girlfriend or something. Boy, I was waaaay off on that one. Heh.

  • http://www.harry-dowling.net exeldot smith
  • bardefa

    Latest news:
    "The independent filmmaker who brought ACORN to its knees last year with undercover exposes was arrested this week along with three others"..

    WELL WQELL WELL – payback from the top nut – acorn's own B. Insain O.

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/semus semus

    Great letter. But your wasting your time. There is something that doesn't ring true in this ideological shift. The arguments are nothing more than meaningless left wing platitudes. Some are quite laughable, to decide to take the stance on Global Warming or Climate Change now, when the infrastructure of the movement is crumbling again the timing given that the conservative movement is seeing daylight and the left is in a panic. It won't be possible to have an honest discussion with whoever this person is. A dramatic move at an interesting time. Hmmm.

  • Moriah

    A woman's behind this… no-one could be rational one day and on the right and suddenly flip to the opposite team unless there was a woman …

  • Tony the Truth

    Charles Who?

  • LadyLiberty

    The list of 10 reasons for parting with the right are the same projections and adolescent talking points we're used to hearing as opposed to intelligent debate from the left. This is pathetic. It is to Dennis Prager's credit that he asks for an explanation–something the left wouldn't bother with. I suspect the Muslim Ummah paid a visit either verbally or in person. Wish Charles would fight the source of the trouble.

  • Cabby – AZ

    Mr. Prager, I have always immensely appreciated your articles and regard you as
    one of the best, articulate voices for freedom. Now that I have learned to use the
    computer (a very senior citizen) it is a thrill to read you on-line. This rebuttal of
    a newly-converted leftest is masterful! Thank God for people of your caliber.

  • Lawrence

    Prager is way too kind to Charles. Mad King Charles has banned people from his blog for downdinging comments! Why have a rating system if you are going to ban people for that? He has lied routinely about so many things, including his series of lies about Robert Spencer. Plus Charles himself used to be a global warming skeptic (do the research), before he did a u-turn and then in classic Orwellian style pretended to always be a global warming hysteric. We were always at war with Eurasia.

    And Prager is way too soft on Buchanan btw, Buchanan is an off the charts Jew-hater, a Holocaust Revisionist who sees Jewish conspiracies everywhere, and an anti-black racist besides. Prager's lukewarm writings on everything is rather off-putting, no real convictions, no heart. You miss Charles, really Prager? How pathetic, it's like you wish for a reconciliation that is impossible, get over it. Charles is a lost cause.

  • Brian448

    Anyone expect that as the tide turns back to concervative in the government, he will suddenly "see the error of his ways" and do yet another 180 in an attempt to weasel his way back onto the popular team again? Could be interesting to watch if so. But methinks he has destroyed all of his conservative bridges by now. So probably wouldn't work.

    In short, I guess I am saying CJ is and always has been a charade and a popularity leech.

  • Devout Socialist

    And Prager is way too soft on Buchanan btw, Buchanan is an off the charts Jew-hater, a Holocaust Revisionist who sees Jewish conspiracies everywhere, and an anti-black racist besides. Prager's lukewarm writings on everything is rather off-putting, no real convictions, no heart.

    Lawrence, I strongly agree with your first sentence but strongly disagree with the second.

    Buchanan is indeed a vicious anti-Semite, but conservative intellectuals like Prager and Buckeley are praiseworthy for avoiding invective and attempting, above all, to be reasonable menschen in the time-honoured tradition of the Talmud. One need not respond to hate, with hate.

    I will always go out of my way to read Prager, or Glazov, or Bawer, or Spencer, or Bat-Yeor. Their vilification by the Islamophiliac far-left is to their credit!

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/Brian_Garst Brian Garst

    Congratulations, I'm sure you've just A) earned a spot on Charles' list of meany-pants fascists and B) been banned from his silly little site of hateful stupidity. Engaging that giant web-troll is a waste of time, as enjoyable as the smackdowns are.

  • Maria

    What a disappointing step by Charles who I still love/respet so muh to lump freeRepublic & atlas shruggs with "hate" and not a real HATE site like the militant daily cos, oh, well.
    Yet, the postitivity of Charles still goes on as he sees at least Israel – as the – real victim of radical Arab racism & militant Islamic-fascism.

    • Brittany C

      Yeah. He just never talks about it anymore.

  • http://antipsiquiatria.org/ Chechar

    @ “I have observed other credible intelligent people ( very few-6, actually) make an abrupt left turn. In one case it was a surrender to homosexuality, in another a personal war with God over a painful injustice suffered in youth” –Haarumph, way above

    Childrearing models explain the whys of today’s otherwise inexplicable left-turns among westerners, as I explain in one of the longest articles in my blogsite.