A How-to Manual
When you want to discredit a critic, one way to do it is to address his objections and criticisms and counter them with reason and thoughtful arguments. Or, you can just do it the easy way and start a rumor, a smear campaign.
During the South Carolina Republican primary for the 2000 Presidential election, George W. Bush’s supporters did exactly that to John McCain. Karl Rove tried several different rumors, including that McCain was “unstable,” that his years as a POW had driven him “insane,” and that his wife was a drug addict. But the most widespread one, and the one that worked, was the rumor that he’d fathered an illegitimate daughter by a black prostitute. The daughter, of course, was adopted by the McCains from an orphanage in Bangladesh, a fact easily proven.
That this smear campaign worked rather well, in spite of clear evidence to the contrary, and in spite of the adoption of this girl being not a source for embarrassment, but an act of kindness and love that is commendable, tells us something of the power of rumor.
This person is mentally ill. She was seen preaching to an empty chair.
This person is a media hog. See? Here’s some (heavily edited and snipped) private messages that show it clearly.
This person is a liar. We supported him entirely and said over and over again that everything he did was his idea and totally student-led and grassroots, but now we’re mad at him, so he’s a liar.
This person is evil. She is probably demon-possessed. Here’s a whole series of blog posts written about her, without a single link or piece of evidence of any kind. We said it. It’s true.
It works. In the case of the empty-chair rumor, it has worked for years. I bet you can still find people in South Carolina who believe that John McCain rumor.
And here’s an example of how it’s done.
This is an email I got from Linda Fossen a while ago. I’ve addressed it at length already. However, it’s where we have to start. This is the beginning.
Linda was not really asking these questions to get answers. She was sending me a threat. Shut up, take down your web site, or we’ll go after your family.
And I’d done enough reading about the Religion of Victimhood at that point to understand where she was headed. According to their dogma, sexual abuse tends to be familial. She was poking about in my family to try to find something she could point to and say, “See? Sexual abuse.” The crap about our granddaughter and the words “court-ordered” were a reference in that direction. Shut up, take down this web site, or we’ll start a rumor about your granddaughter.
Another piece of dogma in their Religion is that substance abuse issues of any kind are indicative of childhood sexual abuse. Hence, the question about Nathan. Shut up, take down your web site, or we’ll go after your dead son.
So, realizing immediately that was where this was headed, I took pre-emptive action.
But they continued, of course. With this.
This screen shot, undoubtedly obtained by Camille Lewis, was part of a conversation that I had in 2011, when I was really very unaware of the scope of the Religion of Victimhood. I had been told that victims never lie about sexual abuse. I was totally taken aback by that because I knew it simply wasn’t true. And these Three Witches can yell and scream and insist that I’m wrong, but people do lie. People lie about everything. Hell, Camille lies with fake identities, and fake research. Cathy lies about protesters outside NOVA. Linda lies about nearly everything, including fake suicide notes and Beth Murschell.
But this becomes the basis for the smear campaign. Linda grabbed it happily and began furiously blogging.
Knowing nothing at all about my family other than the few sentences shown, Linda dissects my whole family history and my entire psychological profile. Does she have any credentials for doing this? Nope. She just speculates away, based on nothing at all.
My words are haunting me. Oh, gee. It’s my deepest shame. It’s so deep I didn’t even know about it.
I am hiding a secret. OMG. And Linda Fossen knows all about it. She has ferreted it out. What could my secret be? It causes me such shame. Oh, my.
The supposed secret is, of course, that my dad was a child molester. She is basing this on that comment. She declares my father, who she never met, guilty because of a second-hand story. She has no idea if I’m even telling the truth at all. Maybe my father is as fictitious as the Tozars. She cannot possibly know anything at all, but she declares him guilty and me, well, I guess in denial, because she’s omniscient or something.
And that would be, well, just stupid if that was as far as it went. But it’s not. And remember, determining the truth or falsity of these claims is not the point. Linda is not, never was, looking for any truth here. She and Camille and Cathy are doing a smear campaign.
What they are trying to elicit is this sort of thing, from the Manhaters site where either Linda or Camille posted my little story above.
The others weigh in, knowing nothing at all, but pronouncing judgment. [She wasn’t given “extra gifts,” Lara. Unless you want to believe that Dad was abusing grown men and women.]
So here, she brings it up again and this time, stretches it. I don’t believe anyone because I didn’t believe my step-sister’s daughter. And she cites “statistics.” But I’ve looked up the statistics and they are all over the place.
And another screen shot, taken entirely out of context. It occurred during a conversation about pedophilia. But they aren’t interested in context or facts, just rumor. And the rumor to be spread is that Sally doesn’t believe anyone is ever abused because Sally is herself covering up/in denial about her own family’s deep dark secret: incest.
Just perpetuate the rumor. Lay the groundwork. Continue to float stuff, while Camille looks all over for more.
And not believing my step-sister’s daughter becomes “no child is ever abused.”
And it becomes “Sally is justifying sex with a minor.” Of course. My dad was a child molester.
And then, having established that my father was a child abuser, we move to living people. Who is the problem? After all, “the problem” has to be a person, doesn’t it? Out comes the innuendo. There’s a “problem” and it’s a person.
To pile on, the admin adds that they “now know” stuff. They now know. They now have made up a narrative and are following it.
And bazinga, Karen Nelson Lee (whose most insightful comments usually consist of “Wow” and “Interesting”) chimes in.
To make it more interesting, I’m an inadequate mother. Of course. My son died. Obviously, we were abject failures as parents. Otherwise, he’d have lived to be ninety-two. If your child dies young, it’s your fault. Know that. Karen Nelson Lee has spoken.
So, just after these comments went up, I get this email from Linda Fossen. Please take note of that. It’s important. She sends me the message commanding me to appear. Anyone could have. But Linda does it. And the “questions” she wants me to answer are those above, about my granddaughter. Linda wants me to answer them.
Not being insane, I declined to even reply to her.
And then comes the interesting conversation from August 17 on my Facebook wall. It’s public. Anyone can see it in its entirety. When confronted with all this, Linda begins to pretty dramatically back-pedal. But keep in mind as you’re reading this, the question was all about my granddaughter. The innuendo was that I’m covering up for child molesters. And Linda was demanding answers.
She wasn’t even thinking about child abuse! Not even any. That’s all Linda Fossen ever thinks about, folks. Go do a search for her on Disqus. Every article on the net regarding the subject in any way, she’s right there, commenting away about her sexual-abuse-for-ten-years.
When I “heard,” she says. Rumors, you know. This is all common knowledge. Everyone is talking about my son’s death and the reason. It’s just logical to ask somebody about their son’s death right out like that, isn’t it? In eight years, I have never had anyone ask about Nathan’s death so coldly as Linda Fossen. Nobody. [BTW, it’s methadone and it is, in fact, widely used for pain management. I know more about the drug than I ever wanted to.]
See? There are just so many rumors. Conflicting ones. All those rumors. Oh, yes, everyone is just all abuzz about my granddaughter and my son’s death eight years ago.
The first email exchange I had with Fossen, she went public almost immediately and reproduced nearly the whole thing on the old defunct 2nd Edition page, conveniently leaving out the part where she lost her temper and called me a bitch.
I did not try to prove anything. I did prove it. Right here.
And that brings us to the biggy. Linda had nothing at all to do with the accusations about my family. Nothing at all. I do not have a screen shot of the accusation made against Dave, by name, but at least two people saw it. The post was removed within about ten minutes of going up. It was made by an admin at Manhaters. You guess which one.
So I pinned her down. And this is what I got. Denial. She never. Ever. She didn’t even think it. Not ever.
But Dad? Well, yeah. Dad is quite conveniently dead. He can’t sue her for libel. Dave could.
Pay attention, and you’ll notice that these people are very, very careful about accusing living people of stuff. They let their surrogates do it.
And in a matter of a few hours, Linda Fossen had run back to her hidey hole and behind the anonymity of “admin,” posted this.
If I had written “I do not care for bananas,” they would have cropped out “for bananas” and berated me for “not caring.”
Evil just runs in families, don’t you know.
Really? No one ever brought up anything like this. Oh, no, it’s my “projection.”
Of course not. Maytag was just following up on all the zillion rumors she’d heard. People have just been calling each other and talking endlessly, speculating about my family. Sure.
No one ever implies or suggests anything like this. Ever.
And make it look like all you really care about is the child. You’re just looking out for her welfare because, well, love and Jesus.
Remember, it’s not about what’s true. It’s all just about perpetuating the rumor.
And this is how it’s done.
This is what Bush’s Brain, Karl Rove, did to John McCain to win the SC primary race.
And if you happen to anger any of these three women in any way, they will do it to you. Guaranteed.