The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Never Doubt That Kurt Eichenwald Cares Deeply About Gay Kids With Bad Haircuts

Posted on | February 22, 2013 | 34 Comments

Thursday I posted a “coming out” video by a mopey kid with a bad haircut. This evidently enraged a Vanity Fair writer:

Thu, February 21, 2013 7:38 PM
From: KURT EICHENWALD <[email protected]>
To: Chris Smith <[email protected]>; “[email protected]” <[email protected]>
Subject: you are both despicable

I will address you both as adults, even though you clearly are not. The fact that you could use your site to make fun of an abused, frightened teenager is the most abhorrent thing I have ever seen by supposed “professional” commentators. Your decision that this kid was a fake was the type of arrogance I would expect to see from a 5th grader, not an adult. If you have nothing better to do than direct derision and contempt towards a child, then maybe you should stop pretending you are anything more than bullies who have nothing better to do with their lives.
You deserve all of the contempt possible. And hopefully, you will pay a price for your arrogance and immaturity.
Kurt Eichenwald

Not content with that, he followed up with this:

Thu, February 21, 2013 8:01 PM
Re: you are both despicable
From: KURT EICHENWALD <[email protected]>
To: Chris Smith <[email protected]>; “[email protected]” <[email protected]>
Oh, and by the way, you immature bastards….
I have invited my 7,000 twitter followers to contact your advertisers and demand they stop advertising with your site. And they’re doing it.
Have a nice life. You bastards.

Well, this was certainly a charming introduction to Kurt Eichenwald, and he is a man of his word, because a few hours later, one of our advertisers forwarded to me this e-mail:

Subject: your add on a hate site
Date: Thu, 21 Feb 2013 20:00:11 -0600
From: KURT EICHENWALD <[email protected]>
You are currently advertising on a site called In the last two days, these “adults” took a youtube video of a young gay teen who was both coming out and revealing abuse he has been suffering at the hands of his mother and not only made fun of him (for his haircut!), but invited their followers to do the same. The followers happily complied. This site does not represent your values. Moreover, this child is clearly depressed and discussed the times he considered suicide. If the torment of these “adults” on this site contributes to the boy acting on those feelings, you would not want to have any connection to it.
Many thanks.
Kurt Eichenwald
Contributing Editor
Vanity Fair

The advertiser, in forwarding the note, remarked that she is “a former socialist turned conservative” who is not intimidated by Eichenwald’s secondary boycott threat, which looks for all the world like a re-play of the “Stop Rush” operation.

A lot of people are probably wondering, “Who the hell is Kurt Eichenwald?” You can consult his Wikipedia entry. His biggest controversy was a story about a teenage boy running a pornography site, in which Eichenwald reportedly paid money to the site operator and . . . something about “ethics”:

Mr. Eichenwald wrote several articles on Mr. Berry and Internet child pornography, the first of them published in The Times on Dec. 19, 2005.
“I have no independent memory of any payments I am alleged to have made in June 2005 through PayPal,” he said in a written statement yesterday. “If these PayPal payments did occur in June 2005, I am deeply sorry that my inability to remember them has resulted in permitting a series of convicted felons to cast doubt on the nature of my wife’s and my efforts to save a young man who was caught in the grip of a cycle of drugs and abuse.”
He has said he gave the $2,000 payment not as a reporter but as a person concerned that Mr. Berry was in danger from sexual predators. It was a month later, he has said, that he began to pursue the young man’s story as a journalist.
He did not disclose the financial connection to his editors while working on the articles, and Mr. Eichenwald has said that he simply forgot it.

Hey, people forget things. It happens.

As to the post that led Eichenwald to write to our advertisers, describing this as a “hate site,” I’ll say: Somebody called that video to my attention and I watched it — or, I should say, I tried to watch it, before giving up — and my main reaction was, “What’s with that haircut?” 

The thought occurred to me that (a) the kid is basically inviting everybody to attend his pity party, and (b) our sarcastic commenters were likely to say rude things about him.

The video already had nearly 20,000 views in barely a week and — in case this didn’t cross anybody else’s mind — that translates to a bit of YouTube advertising revenue for young Austin Gates. So he’s like a professional pity-party event planner or something.

Are his tales of abuse and suicidal thoughts true? Has anyone verified his story? “If your mother says she loves you, check it out,” but if a kid says his mother hates him, don’t bother, eh?

Habitual cynicism, that’s my problem. Having been a teenage hoodlum myself, I see a video like that and instantly think: “Scam.”

Kid’s probably hustling contributions to buy himself some weed. Or maybe he’s angling for a guest spot on daytime TV talk shows, maybe even a reality TV series deal. For all we know, the minute the video ended, Austin Gates was high-fiving his buddies: “How was that, huh? Did you like that whiny thing I did at the end about suicide? Hey, man, fire up the bong and let’s burn some buds.”

We’re not supposed to think that way anymore, I guess. It’s “bullying” to see a mopey kid and say, “Stop moping — and get a haircut!”

One of my sons is in Army basic training now. He called home last night and reported that he was one of only two men in his platoon to qualify on their first day at the rifle range. Before it’s over with, he’ll be expected to hike 12 miles in full gear. And . . .

Kurt Eichenwald wants to shut down our advertisers. Because we’re a “hate site.” Maybe I should start moping and threaten suicide, but I’m not a gay boy with a bad haircut, so I guess Kurt Eichenwald probably wouldn’t be interested in my feelings.


Damn that habitual cynicism . . .

UPDATE: The habitually feisty Kathy Shaidle:

Progressives live in the past.
They still think their bullying tactics work, especially their Selma-era “I’m gonna start a boycott against you” bullshit.
The same tired, tapped out bullshit that doubled Glenn Beck’s net worth in 12 months.

If you’re not following Kathy Shaidle on Twitter, you should. She’ll fight ’em ’til hell freezes over, then she’ll fight ’em on the ice. Also, this might be a good time for readers hit the tip jar. 



34 Responses to “Never Doubt That Kurt Eichenwald Cares Deeply About Gay Kids With Bad Haircuts”

  1. inheritthewind1
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:16 am
  2. benning
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:49 am

    “your add on a hate site” – Poor Mr. Eichenwald … no spell check. 🙁


    I’m making Lentil Soup! 😉

  3. matthew w
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:53 am

    “Or maybe he’s angling for a guest spot on daytime TV talk shows, maybe even a reality TV series deal.”

    Our culture today is based on everyone having their “Puck” moment.

    Remember “Puck” from “The (un)Real World” show??

    Good to hear that note from you advertiser not to bend to liberal hissy snits

  4. t-dahlgren
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 8:02 am

    I must confess.

    Truth be told, I said the meanest thing possible about that teenager in the original comment thread. I said nothing.

    I said nothing because I really didn’t give a shit about some mopey teenager on the internet. As if his ‘struggles’ were somehow more significant, or worthy of concern than any other.

    Had I even given one shit about the little shit I might have said

    ‘it must be difficult.’

    But I didn’t, so I didn’t.

    Still don’t. But Eichenwald, if you are listening, thanks for caring, because it must be difficult.

  5. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 9:14 am

    Eichenwald should stop worrying who are the H8ters out there. But you can’t save everyone. Eichenwald works at Vanity Fair, so why not find that hurt little boy James Wolcott who must have an office down in the basement, get him a new stapler, and make him his pet project.

    Solutions. They are right under your nose if you just look for them.

  6. richard mcenroe
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 9:29 am

    Since you’re being threatened with a boycott by a puissant Vanity Fair drone (that is how you spell pissant in French, oui?) I felt obliged to show my solidarity with oppressed whiny brats by hitting TOM’s tip jar as well. As always, advise Stacy that it’s for bail and beer, not frivolous uses.

  7. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 9:30 am

    Eichenwald could give that kid a haircut for a fraction of $2,000. Just saying. Reminds me of this.

  8. CitizenEgg
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 9:41 am

    That typo is even funnier/sadder/more revealing when he lists his position as ‘editor’. Oh wait, he’s just a ‘contributing’ editor. He must be the guy that contributes emotions and angst to the mix.

  9. Neo
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 10:23 am

    Life is tough, then your get a “bad haircut”

  10. Neo
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 10:28 am

    “Have a nice life. You bastards.”
    Correct me if I’m wrong, but this certainly doesn’t sound all that “adult” to me. And the use of stereotypes, like “bastard,” just doesn’t embrace all that is inclusive and diverse. Not to mention that there obviously would have to have been some level of invasion of privacy to determine your lineage.

  11. Finrod Felagund
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 10:51 am

    It seems that every mouthy liberal out there lives in a glass mansion.

  12. richard mcenroe
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 11:04 am

    Congrats to your boy, Stacy but… only two recruits in his platoon qualified on Day One? Just give the others AK’s and tell them they’re insurgents. The M16 series is NOT that hard to shoot well.

  13. Dai Alanye
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 12:05 pm

    If I had a name like “Kurt Buchenwald” (or anything close to it) I’d be cautious about throwing around hate accusations.

  14. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 12:48 pm
  15. McGehee
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 1:01 pm

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who had that thought.

  16. Steve Skubinna
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 1:07 pm

    Must be some kind of ivory tower that encourages a writer at Vanity Fair to believe himself capable of intimidating anyone. Who the hell does he think he is, Spencer Ackerman?

    I suppose it’s fortunate that in my daily life I’m never going to cross paths with him or his ilk.

  17. jakee308
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 1:21 pm

    “That 20 gigabytes of kiddie porn on my computer is research material officer”

  18. Adjoran
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 1:49 pm

    What a pompous ass – and unethical, too. The total package.

    You just can’t beat leftists with compassion. Why, I just think of good ol’ Kurt, out there cruising the mean streets, searching for all these young gay boys to help out.

    I bet the internet saves him a bundle on gas.

  19. Popehat
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 2:04 pm

    You posted an unusually douchey post.

    You got the reaction you were trolling for.

    Now you’re wallowing in the reaction and snorting.

    Don’t be such a Schmalfeldt.

  20. It’s Internet Crazy Day: Special Ironic Menendez ‘Healthy Youth’ Edition : The Other McCain
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 2:11 pm

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  21. Never Doubt That Stacy McCain Cares Deeply About Abusing Gay Kids – Now Hit His Tip Jar! | Daily Pundit
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  22. K-Bob
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 5:12 pm

    Well, in his defense he was typing angry.

    Wait a minute, don’t those people always type angry?

    Never mind.

  23. K-Bob
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 5:44 pm

    Eichenwald wants to shut down Google?

  24. Quartermaster
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 6:32 pm

    You don’t have to worry about feeling alone about such things. There are many warped personalities here who prolly are thinking the same sort of warped things passing through your warped mind. We many who hang out here are much like the head warped mind, RSM, who encourages such things by acting out his warped thinking in many of his posts.

    You don’t have to be crazy to hang out here, but it does make it much easier to fit in.

  25. Quartermaster
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 6:34 pm

    Really. I shot expert the first try and I’m not Gunny Hathcock.

  26. Steve Skubinna
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 6:51 pm

    First time I simply qualified. After that, and every subsequent time, I shot expert. That was with the classic M16A1, with the triangular asymmetric hand guards and the full auto capability. Once you get the rifle dialed in and work out your routine it’s hard to miss.

    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:08 pm

    On the bright side Mr. Eichenwald turned this into an upcoming appearance on the Bill Schmalfeldt show. That should do wonders for his career.

  28. Bob Belvedere
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:36 pm

    That is one of his greatest bits – thanks, Evi. It warmed my cold little right wing diseased heart.

  29. Bob Belvedere
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:38 pm

    You’re on a roll today, Evi.

  30. Bob Belvedere
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 7:40 pm

    Much, much easier – it also helps if you can see the Fnords.

  31. McGehee
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 8:30 pm

    I’ve never been to Fnorway.

  32. Garym
    February 22nd, 2013 @ 10:03 pm

    Now its all starting to make sense!

  33. JoeKidd
    February 23rd, 2013 @ 11:39 am

    Four questions…

    1. Where was Kurt Eichenwald’s outrage when Obama made Kevin Jennings his “Safe Schools” Czar?

    From Pamela Geller in 2009: President Obama has appointed Kevin Jennings, founder of GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network) — which sponsored the conference that produced the notorious “Fistgate” scandal (in which young teens were guided on how to perform dangerous homosexual perversions including “fisting”) — to head up “Safe Schools” efforts at the Department of Education. Jennings is a vicious, anti-religious bigot who once said “[F–k] ’em” to the “Religious Right.” He supports promoting homosexuality and gender confusion as normative to even young students. He made that comment in a New York City church.

    2. The Obama-Sandusky connection: Graham Spanier. Where was Kurt Eichenwald’s outrage when Barack Obama hired Graham Spanier??

    WaPo’s Emily Heil wrote about the Sandusky enabler/cover-up expert’s hiring in her article “Graham Spanier’s gig as a federal worker is a mystery”:

    Graham Spanier might have been ousted from his post at the helm of Penn State over the sex-abuse scandal that engulfed the university, but it seems he’s found a backup employer: the American taxpayer. … His lawyer confirms to the Loop that Spanier is working on a part-time consulting basis for a “top-secret” agency on national security issues. But the gig is so hush-hush, he couldn’t even tell his attorneys the name of the agency. In April — months after his ouster as president but before the release of the internal report — he told the Patriot-News of central Pennsylvania that he was working on a “special project for the U.S. government relating [to] national security.” The other shoe dropped last November when Sara Ganim reported: “Former Penn State president Graham Spanier has been charged with obstruction, endangering the welfare of children and perjury related to the Jerry Sandusky case.”

    3. Where was Kurt Eichenwald’s outrage when two Democrat fathers with daughters, both scratching each other’s back to win their respective elections, worked together to “hold off” the arrest of a senate intern who was both an illegal immigrant AND a registered sex offender???

    4. And finally (I could go on), where was Kurt Eichenwald’s outrage when it was revealed that same Democrat Senator was flying out of the country to have sexual intercourse with underage girls????

  34. Eternal Teenage Angst | Goldfish and Clowns
    February 28th, 2013 @ 8:25 am

    […] the kid, I’d drop him an email. No big public displays pro or con; no rushing to ridicule or offer retort to said ridicule. Nothing other than a simple, straightforward and private communication. […]