Yeah, I know, that’s hardly a shock headline. But with Andrew Breitbart getting banned from the Huffer’s front page yesterday over nothing, it’s relevant.
Breitbart told TheDC, “I have the exact opposite view on free speech that these left-wing freaks at Color of Change have: More voices, not less.”
He went on to call Van Jones, a former White House adviser and co-founder of Color of Change “a cop killer-supporting, racist, demagogic freak. And a commie. And an eco-fraudster.” Jones resigned from his position in the Obama administration following a series of embarrassing revelations, including that he had once signed a 9-11 “truther” petition.
Mario Ruiz, The Huffington Post’s senior vice president for media relations, released a statement to TheDC on the decision.
“Andrew Brietbart’s [sic] ad hominem attack on Van Jones in The Daily Caller violates the tenets of debate and civil discourse we have strived for since the day we launched. As a result, we will no longer feature his posts on the front page,” Ruiz wrote.
The statement continued, “Our decision today recognizes that placing posts on the front page is an editorial call that elevates some posts over others, and is an indication of how seriously we take these judgment calls.”
I’ve dealt with Mario and he’s a good guy, but this is silly. Banning ad hominems from politics is like banning politics from politics. If what Breitbart said about Van Jones is bad, how about the ad hominems that Arianna Huffington routinely launched at George W. Bush? In the post at the link, Huffington calls Bush “deluded, “cockeyed” (as modifiers for “optimist,” oddly enough) and a “zealot.” In this one, she calls Sarah Palin a “Trojan moose.” In fact, given the date on that one, September 8, 2008, it’s fair to wonder if Huffington herself launched the extreme hate campaign against Palin that still rages.
I just want to know if the Post will now ban Arianna Huffington from its front page because of her past ad hominem attacks? Or will you folks invent a statute of limitations to exempt your boss?
The Right Sphere also takes a look ad hominen-spewing HuffPost front pagers, Ed Schultz and Jason Linkins. Difference: They’re liberals. So how about it, HuffPo? Gonna get that ban hammer back out, or will you just admit that Breitbart is being banned for other reasons?