July 21, 2017

Who is Alan Smithee, aka Actual Flatticus?

There are many Alan Smithee characters on Twitter, all riffing on the origin of the name, but only one who is Actual Flatticus by sign-in.

He was a Twitter friend of mine. Very thought provoking and usually very, very sharp on issues of campaign finance, both soft money and dark money.

He likes to tell people never to believe what he says, but check it out for themselves.

Unfortunately, that's a schtick with him, not reality.

We got in a long argument over Jane Sanders' ongoing federal investigation, and he blocked me.

That was after a shorter argument about whether or not the Emoluments Clause applies to presidents. It does, contra his claims, as I document in detail.

And, it goes along with me not calling him out for a link that he used to demean Democracy Now's Amy Goodman as a money-grubber who allegedly made $1 million a year when her show was spun off from Pacifica. It may or may not be correct; in any case, per The Nation, her pay and sidebar moneys were mutually negotiated. Also, the source is biased, having previously sued WBAI.

And, the source has HUGE other problems. As in, it's from a website anti-semitic enough to believe The Protocols of The Elders of Zion are "real," and conspiracy-thinking enough to believe in chemtrails, the New World Order, the Illuminati and all sorts of other shit.

Who is Smithee, in more detail?

Some further speculation:

Probably Smithee was involved with the Democratic party at one time, as a precinct captain. Maybe even to the level of county committeeman in a decent-sized county. Maybe a delegate to a state convention.

Like Brains, he got burned, disgusted and burned out at some point. But acted differently. Rather than look to vote Green, or other third parties, when available, not voting is his preference.

He hates journalists in general. Black-and-white thinker on this, as on several other things.

He can’t stand Jill Stein, for whatever reason. Rather than pick something truly nutty, like her sexist Mother’s Day comment, rather, in my time w/him on Twitter, he picked on her idealism, saying she “declared war” on Saudi Arabia as his reference to her quite reasonable call for an embargo on arms sales to KSA.

But, that may be driven by something else. I think he’s got some background sexism, at least when it comes to argumentation. I think he likes to argue more with women than with men, likes beating them even more than men. I do not think this parlays into sexism against HRC as a presidential candidate.

I don’t think he’s a troll per se. That said, for him, every problem is not a nail, but a rock needing to be crushed by a sledgehammer. And ultimately, he leaves the feeling of a dull, throbbing toothache. I think he does know better, but this has been his modus operandi so long he doesn’t care. Related to this, it’s not just Stein. He doesn’t like the Green Party in general for whatever reason, as noted above. He doesn't hate it, but from what he's discussed of his past voting record, he refused third-party voting.

That said, again, he doesn’t like to be proven wrong, when he can be proven wrong, despite his calls for people to check out everything he says. Another way of putting this is “he’s got a mind like a steel trap” … and … no, it’s not rusted shut, per an old MASH joke. Rather, it’s a double spring-loaded, or pre-programmed, trap, or something like that.

Based on his citing Educate-Yourself (the link above), and other people referring to Amy Goodman’s alleged $1 million pay as a reason she’s a co-conspirator on suppressing so-called 9/11 “truth,” I wonder if he’s a conspiracy theorist. The reality on Goodman is that the parting from Pacifica was mutual, mutually agreed and mutually acceptable, per this Nation profile.  The Educate Yourself piece Flatticus used is also a flat-out lie to claim that her salary is tax-free. NOBODY’s salary is tax free. They may take all sorts of deductions, but it’s NOT “tax free.” 

Do I hate him? No, not at all.

I find it kind of sad that he can't or won't practice what he preaches on the verification issue.

And, so, I think others on Twitter need to be warned about him.


PDiddie said...

I couldn't get on board with that guy/gal right from the get-go.

Also souring on Cait Johnstone, between her call to reach out to the far right last week and her "Good" post about John McCain this week.

(Maybe Aussie Greens really are this nasty, but American Greens are not, in my first-hand experience. She's not showing up as especially helpful of late IMHO.)

As I wrote on FB there:

With no respect intended for John McCain, two things come to mind.

1) For the second time, a prominent senator's glioblastoma alters the trajectory of the nation's healthcare insurance legislation.

2) It seems more than a little incongruous to call for outreach to the conservative far right one week, and celebrate the pending demise of one of their "heroes" (sic) the next. But perhaps this is just my personal cognitive dissonance, as some shade-tree psychologist posting above has advised, sans fee.

Gadfly said...

Agreed that Caitlin is largely lacking in logical coherence.


I had debated friending Smithee or not for some time.

He IS spot-on, on campaign finance issues. But, it's a one-stop thing with him. Like a Scott Santens on basic income.

And, beyond that, his "research what I say" is a schtick, nothing more.