Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Sunday, December 17, 2017

Rolling Stone writer Matt Taibbi, known for his hard-hitting reporting on Goldman Sachs in the wake of the 2008 Subprime Mortgage Crisis, fell from grace this October after controversial passages from an old book he'd co-authored, The eXile: Sex, Drugs, and Libel in the New Russia, resurfaced and were spread online. eXile purports to be the memoirs of Taibbi and co-author Mark Ames, both of whom headed the notorious tabloid magazine by the same name in Moscow in the ‘90s. Indeed, a disclaimer on the copyright page calls the work nonfiction. However, this is not entirely true. Put simply, like the original magazine, much of eXile was made up for the purposes of satire. Paste was able to trace the effort to cast eXile as a factual memoir back to an alt-right author named Jim Goad in 2011. Goad, whose magazine, ANSWER Me!, had been parodied by The eXile, began tweeting about the Natasha passages, and tagging the outlets that hosted Ames work or had him on as a contributor.

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Despite his efforts, only Breitbart picked up the story, and that was after Ames published a damning report about the Koch Brothers' political influence. And so, in April 2012, Goad posted a long-form attack on Ames on his website, accusing him of being a pedophile and citing the non-fiction disclaimer at the beginning of eXile.

However, the narrative that the book was an accurate portrayal of the lives Taibbi and Ames led in Moscow wouldn't really take off until October of this year -- ahead of the book tour for I Can't Breathe, Taibbi's look at the death of Eric Garner and its aftermath.

Jessa Crispin of The Guardian included a reference to eXile passages in a piece about liberal misogyny on the Oct. 19. Days later, the news was appearing everywhere, from The Daily Beast to The Daily Caller; Jezebel to Newsweek; Reuters to Newsmax; The Nation to Breitbart, and so on.

Even Cernovich got in on the action, writing a Medium post titled, "Matt Taibbi Confesses to Forcing Employees to Perform Sexual Favors."

Following the media storm, Goad sent Taibbi a bizarre message gloating over the Rolling Stone writer's misfortune. "I can't imagine the pain and heartache you're going through as a result of attempting to do a shitty, rich-kid imitation of me," he wrote. "We both know I will always be better with words than you are. No one believes your alibis. You've committed credibility suicide. Cute newsboy cap, though!"

Despite how widespread the story was, not a single journalist or editor contacted the women named in the controversial passages.

Crispin, whose Guardian piece appears to have set the train in motion, justified the decision by telling Paste over Twitter direct message that, "I have not written about these accusations as a journalist."

Incredible as that acknowledgement is, before long it had become an accepted part of the national discussion that Taibbi and Ames were misogynists who had bragged about sexual harassment and horrifying treatment of women.

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And speaking of sloppy reporting, there's an op-ed hit piece in the WaPo by Kathy Lally pushing these same smears about Ames and Taibbi.

www.washingtonpost.com

Why would Lally do this? Because apparently Lally felt that Taibbi and Ames in their work were mean to her during her time as a Baltimore Sun correspondent in Moscow.

While there's seems to be little doubt that Taibbi and Ames were outrageous in their work on the eXile, the last time I checked being juvenile, reprehensible, rude, crude, and even verbally abusive, are not actual law breaking offenses ... if that were the case, just being immature would be a felony.

Matt Taibbi is an awesome journalist, and his writing on politics should not be held back by these baseless smears -- baseless smears that are also being propagated by Taibbi's enemies.

#1 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-17 07:07 PM | Reply

Getting back to the Paste article at the top of the thread ...

This includes the controversial passages in question -- all written by Ames -- in which the authors joke about sexually harassing two of their female employees (Masha and Sveta), and in which Ames describes having sex with a 15-year-old girl (Natasha), coercing a woman (Katya) into having an abortion, and raping other Russian women.

There were two women who went by Masha at The eXile at the time. Both told Paste that the passages were fictional, but requested their last names not be included. One wished not to be quoted directly.

"I was never harassed by Matt Taibbi, nor did I see him sexually harass anyone at work or outside work either," the other Masha told Paste in a phone interview. "It was a ridiculous passage written by Mark."

"These claims that Matt would do this stuff are ridiculous," she said. "I left The eXile because we started dating, and Matt was worried about impropriety. He didn't even ask me out at work! Matt is a fundamentally decent and kind person."

The woman referred to as Sveta (whose last name has also been omitted for professional reasons) also told Paste that the encounter described in Ames' passage never happened, and that neither Taibbi nor Ames ever acted inappropriately towards her or any other woman in the office.

"It never happened," she wrote over email.

When asked if the two editors ever ignored impropriety by other male staffers, she told us there was nothing to ignore. In other words, The eXile's work environment was not hostile for women.

Multiple former staffers we spoke to told us that Ames did have a young girlfriend named Natasha, but none believed she was 15. The common explanation we heard was that her age had been lowered to satirize the fact that in 1998, Russia changed its age of consent from 16 to 14.

Masha, Taibbi and Sveta told us that they believe Katya to be a fictional character.


Again, Taibbi is an awesome journalist who has written important and meaningful exposes on our political system and on Trump. People need to slow down on these sort of accusations that are not tethered to any sort of merit or evidence.

#2 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-17 08:08 PM | Reply

Taibbi apologized for his "cruel and misogynist language"; I hope he meant it:

While the events described are not a biographical reality, this is not to say I don't have regrets about the eXile, which was conceived as a giant satire, whose purpose was to be an ongoing embarrassment to the expatriates who came to Russia to spread the American way. In my younger mind this sounded like a good idea, a cross of Andrew Dice Clay, The Ugly American and Charlie Hebdo. But in practice it was often stupid, cruel, gratuitous, and mean-spirited. I regret many editorial decisions that I made back then, and putting my name as a co-author on a book that used cruel and misogynistic language to describe many people and women in particular. I hope readers can forgive my poor judgment at that time.

www.huffingtonpost.com

#3 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 08:43 PM | Reply

The Huffpo link with Taibbi's apology references this link titled ...

On October 27, Aimee Levitt published a piece in The Chicago Reader with the apt title "Twenty years ago, in Moscow, Matt Taibbi was a misogynist ------- -- and possible worse."

Why can't Aimee Levitt do the same homework that Paste Magazine did? And whoever wrote that BS smear of a headline for The Chicago Reader is also at fault.

I'm all for women NOT being sexually assaulted and NOT being sexually harassed ... In fact, I'm all for woman being treated equally in all aspects of society. Equal pay, equal professional status, equal responsibility. Put women in army rifle companies if that's what they want to do -- I'm for all these things.

But this knee-jerk reactionary way of dealing with men who did nothing more than be boorish immature jerks will in the long run not serve liberals and women well.

Taibbi and Ames made fun of Kathy Lally's fat ankles in eXile. Are we now going to dig up George Carlin's dead body and scold him for making fun of the fat women he saw lumbering thru the mall?

#4 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-17 09:43 PM | Reply

Rating women by their "rapability" factor is a little more misogynistic than make fun of someone's fat ankles:

But Taibbi has only himself to blame (and not just because his permanent smirk gives him one of the most punchable faces in contemporary journalism). He has tried to foist the responsibility onto his equally unsavory co-author/frenemy, Mark Ames, but, in the end, it doesn't matter who wrote the words. What matters is who was only too happy to claim credit for them. Who was perfectly comfortable putting his name on the masthead of a paper whose nightclub reviews ranked venues according to the "rapability" of the "devs" (girls).

If he regrets doing that, good for him.

#5 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 10:06 PM | Reply

than make fun = than making fun

#6 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 10:26 PM | Reply

Rating women by their "rapability" factor is a little more misogynistic than make fun of someone's fat ankles:

#5 | POSTED BY GAL_TUESDAY

I'm also against rape, just like you're against rape.

So reacting negatively to written words you don't like, like "rapability factor", isn't due-process to Taibbi and Ames.

Especially given that Paste Magazine verified with the publisher, the writers Taibbi and Ames, and most importantly backed up by the women who worked at eXile ... that the passages were meant to be interpreted as satire.

If you want to call it poor satire, fine. If you want to call Taibbi and Ames first class jerks, fine.

And since Taibbi did apologize, why are you qualifying his written apology by saying "if he regrets" doing it?

Liberals are more than okay with zealously overracting, while conservatives deny-deny-deny and fight back -- the truth is somewhere in the middle, and it's called "due-process".

#7 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-17 10:35 PM | Reply

Pope calls for journalists to be vigilant of ‘disinformation'

thehill.com

I would add: beware of faux journalists like Cernovich. Those folks are throwing whatever they can against the wall in the hope that something will stick due to the kneejerk reactions we are seeing on the left when it comes to the #MeToo movement.

#8 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 10:37 PM | Reply

If you want to call it poor satire, fine. If you want to call Taibbi and Ames first class jerks, fine.

Yes.

And since Taibbi did apologize, why are you qualifying his written apology by saying "if he regrets" doing it?

Because I don't know the guy. You don't seem to think he has anything to apologize for, but apparently he does. If he regrets some of the stuff he did, good.

#9 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 10:42 PM | Reply

"If he regrets some of the stuff he did, good." Should be stuff he said/wrote/gave his editorial stamp of approval to.

"Liberals are more than okay with zealously overracting,"

That would not be me. I have been calling out liberals for overreacting to the #metoo movement, including my Senator, Kristen Gillibrand.

So reacting negatively to written words you don't like, like "rapability factor", isn't due-process to Taibbi and Ames.

You made it sound like the worst thing Taibbi did was make fun of some woman's cankles. I was pointing out some of his "satire" was more misogynistic than that.

#10 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-17 10:53 PM | Reply

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You don't seem to think he has anything to apologize for, but apparently he does. If he regrets some of the stuff he did, good.

You made it sound like the worst thing Taibbi did was make fun of some woman's cankles. I was pointing out some of his "satire" was more misogynistic than that.

You're right, I don't think Taibbi had anything to apologize for -- he felt differently, and he's obviously taking the easier road by issuing an apology (as the Paste Magazine article pointed out).

And by saying his satire was more misogynistic than saying so and so has cankles, that's still a bogus standard to hold anyone to.

He never used the raunchy language that people are saying is misogynistic to attack any singular woman like Kathy Lally (if Lally was a fatso dude, they'd undoubtedly called him so) ... he did he use the misogynistic language to attack western women, but not women in general.

The bogus standard of simply being pissed off at Taibbi for the temerity of using references to oral and ---- sex would apply to every rock and roll record ever made.

The Beastie Boys changed their lyrics to 'Paul Revere' because they felt it was disrespectful toward woman, fine with me.

But I don't see Kiss changing their lyrics to 'Lick it Up', nor do I see AC/DC changing the lyrics to 'Giving the Dog a Bone', or Led Zeppelin's changing their reference to ---------- sex in 'Black Dog'. Same with Ted Nugent. And so on ...

Woman undoubtedly made '50 Shades of Grey' into a cottage industry -- why should I care? I don't read that stuff.

I'm not trying to be difficult here, because we mostly agree on everything else -- but I refuse to be offended so easily on pretty much everything, but people who are easily offended (and those who enable them) are re-litigating arguments that were once long settled.

#11 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 07:25 AM | Reply

People need to slow down on these sort of accusations that are not tethered to any sort of merit or evidence.

I like Taibbi's journalism, but I gotta say this: No evidence? They wrote an autobiographical book they personally labeled as non-fiction and recounted tales of the mistreatment of women who worked for them.

If you don't want people thinking you mistreat women, don't tell them in an autobiography how you mistreated women.

Kathy Lally's account of how she and other women were abused by Matt Taibbi and Mark Ames while they were publishing The Exile is here:

www.washingtonpost.com

Taibbi once wrote in the eXile that women had no business wearing "painter's pants and sneakers" when they ought to be more like Russian women, with "their tight skirts, ------- ready lips, and swinging, meaty chests." Ames described going to the senior prom of an international high school with a 17-year-old date he called his "Jew-broad"; he was 34. Back home she would be "jailbait," he wrote in the eXile , but Russia "permits sex with a fourteen-year-old, so long as you had reason to believe she was sixteen, the legal statutory age." A photo shows Ames in the front row with his date.

Anyone who claims that everything they wrote was just a bunch of satire is kidding themselves. They behaved like abusive frat bros and no amount of later good journalism by Taibbi erases that behavior from their history.

#12 | Posted by rcade at 2017-12-18 09:55 AM | Reply

"Ames described going to the senior prom of an international high school with a 17-year-old date....he was 34"

Adult men chaperone teenaged girls, they don't date them.

#13 | Posted by Zed at 2017-12-18 10:47 AM | Reply

Anyone who claims that everything they wrote was just a bunch of satire is kidding themselves. They behaved like abusive frat bros and no amount of later good journalism by Taibbi erases that behavior from their history.

#12 | POSTED BY RCADE

Taibbi and Ames didn't think highly of Lally and ripped her in the most raunchy immature way.

Abuse? Verbal abuse, maybe, but it was STILL a professional disagreement hence the rip-job. The world is filled with people being crappy to each other -- so on that level, big deal.

Now Lally is taking advantage of the current climate to troll for sympathy because Taibbi and Ames were mean to her for her coziness with Russian oligarchs.

If people have lost respect for Taibbi because of the raunchy book (which was hiding in plain site), then I'm saying out loud that I don't respect people like Lally -- she's so damaged now almost 20 years later that she feels justified to push this smear? How did Lally cross the street each day for 20 years?

And I don't respect the lazy journalism from the Huffpo and The Chicago Reader.

#14 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 11:51 AM | Reply

"He never used the raunchy language that people are saying is misogynistic to attack any singular woman like Kathy Lally (if Lally was a fatso dude, they'd undoubtedly called him so) ... he did he use the misogynistic language to attack western women, but not women in general."

Not really:

Who was perfectly comfortable putting his name on the masthead of a paper whose nightclub reviews ranked venues according to the "rapability" of the "devs" (girls).

The bogus standard of simply being pissed off at Taibbi for the temerity of using references to oral and ---- sex would apply to every rock and roll record ever made.

Again, not really. If they had rated women according to their f--kability, while still misogynistic, it would have been a lot less offensive than rating them by their rapability. I hope you can see the difference.

#15 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-18 02:42 PM | Reply

"If you don't want people thinking you mistreat women, don't tell them in an autobiography how you mistreated women."

There's an idea!

#16 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-18 02:49 PM | Reply

If people have lost respect for Taibbi because of the raunchy book (which was hiding in plain site), then I'm saying out loud that I don't respect people like Lally -- she's so damaged now almost 20 years later that she feels justified to push this smear? How did Lally cross the street each day for 20 years?

Pretty easy to find blogposts from 1998 where she is relating a story from Taibbi that he had just posted in eXile:

Date: Mon, 16 Mar 1998
From: "Baltimore Sun (Moscow Bureau)"
Subject: eXile

Dear David Johnson,

Let a thousand flowers bloom, let Matt Taibbi print whatever he wants. After
all, it's a free country. And we all can use some help keeping on our toes.
But why reprint it? All of us who need this message about our shortcomings
can pick up an eXile and read it. Reprinting only the press reviews deprives
the reader of necessary context. In a recent eXile, the editor wrote about
how he dealt with his pregnant girlfriend when she refused to get an
abortion. She wouldn't listen to reason, so he threatened to kill her. That
worked! Then he muses on forever about another pregnant acquaintance who
aborted and about his relief that this child - who would have been a
sloped-head idiot - was instead a dead fetus properly wallowing in the
sewers.
I don't know how it all turned out, I didn't read further. But it
did help me understand the mean-spirited and mindless attack on Fred Hiatt.
So don't just reprint part of the eXile. Give us all or nothing.

Kathy Lally
The Baltimore Sun
Moscow

You like Matt Taibbi, that's fine, but apologizing for his behavior by attacking Lally because she supposedly remained silent for 19 years shows that your frame of reference is a tad skewed.

#17 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2017-12-18 03:06 PM | Reply

#17 RoC, hearing anything about Hollywood bigwigs about to get taken down for gay pedophile parties and subsequent cover-ups? I am, and from someone who has proven to be very accurate about predicting when sexual harassment/assault allegations are about to drop.

#18 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-18 03:15 PM | Reply

#18

Yeah, there are some powerful people in that ring who are scrambling right now and some conspiracy theorists are trying to link that ring to a number of people, including a billionaire record mogul, the head of a major talent agency and notable actor who has already been outed repeatedly.

The weirdest story going around right now is that the deaths of Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell are somehow connected to Joe Francis' estate at Puta Mita and parties that were thrown there by Epstein and his sicko collection of friends. Probably BS but ripping through West LA like wildfire today.

#19 | Posted by Rightocenter at 2017-12-18 04:42 PM | Reply

Taibbi and Ames didn't think highly of Lally and ripped her in the most raunchy immature way.
#14 | POSTED BY PINCHALOAF AT 2017-12-18 11:51 AM | REPLY

The danger of this line of reasoning is that it is only 1 very small step away from the "Locker Room Talk" defense. Especially when, as pointed out above, it's billed as factual by the very people writing it.

#20 | Posted by bartimus at 2017-12-18 05:26 PM | Reply

"Yeah, there are some powerful people in that ring who are scrambling right now and some conspiracy theorists are trying to link that ring to a number of people, including a billionaire record mogul, the head of a major talent agency and notable actor who has already been outed repeatedly."

As a hint source gave this link:

www.imdb.com

Also said a famous designer's time in the barrel is coming.

Any of this square with what you are hearing?

#21 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2017-12-18 07:36 PM | Reply

You like Matt Taibbi, that's fine, but apologizing for his behavior by attacking Lally because she supposedly remained silent for 19 years shows that your frame of reference is a tad skewed.

#17 | POSTED BY RIGHTOCENTER

It's already been established by Paste Magazine at the top of this thread that the sensationalized passages like the one you're referencing in post #19 was satire and never happened -- which is backed up by the Russian women who worked with Ames and Taibbi (see post #2).

I'm not apologizing for Taibbi and Ames, I've called them first class jerks -- but that's all they are and world world is filled with them.

Lally is obviously taking advantage of the current climate to exact revenge against her professional enemies by glomming onto the #MeToo energy -- last time I looked being a bitter opportunist as Lally is being is not anything to hold up in high regard, that's why I'm calling her out.

Your inability to follow the bouncing ball here tells me you're just as lazy as the journalists responsible for enabling the smears against Taibbi and Ames to gain steam in the first place.

#22 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 07:45 PM | Reply

The weirdest story going around right now is that the deaths of Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell are somehow connected to Joe Francis' estate at Puta Mita and parties that were thrown there by Epstein and his sicko collection of friends. Probably BS but ripping through West LA like wildfire today.

#19 | POSTED BY RIGHTOCENTER

I see you're keeping up with you subscription to Tiger Beat.

#23 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 07:49 PM | Reply

The danger of this line of reasoning is that it is only 1 very small step away from the "Locker Room Talk" defense. Especially when, as pointed out above, it's billed as factual by the very people writing it.

#20 | POSTED BY BARTIMUS

Except that the passages being factual were proven to be satire by journalists who actually did journalism 101 and double checked the sources ... sources from the publisher, to the authors, to the former women employees who were there.

#24 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 07:55 PM | Reply

Oh, looky, here's a right-wing rag pushing the BS smears that lazy journalists enabled from the efforts of the alt-right ...

NewsBusters: Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi Joins List of Accused Sex Harassers
www.newsbusters.org

The ridiculous NewsBusters prominently features one Kathy Lally and her lame WaPo article from the other day.

Like I said in the Chris Matthews thread, there's a concerted effort from the alt-right, and right-wingers in general, to engage in as much character assassination and smears as possible.

#25 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 08:16 PM | Reply

Jesus Pinch.....your creepy obsession and shameless defense of Taibbi is pathetic. You can't even acknowledge his obvious over the kind behavior.

Keep it up.....please. You are shaping up to be more entertaining than Marytylerwhore.

#26 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 08:34 PM | Reply

Over the line......

#27 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 08:35 PM | Reply

Jesus Pinch.....your creepy obsession and shameless defense of Taibbi is pathetic. You can't even acknowledge his obvious over the kind behavior.

#26 | POSTED BY EBERLY

I called them jerks multiple times ...

You're being ridiculous.

Go read ROC's Tiger Beat rags for Hollywood gossip that's obviously more your style ... leave the serious topics of discussion to the grown-ups.

#28 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 08:46 PM | Reply

"I called them jerks multiple times "

Sure you did. LOL.

You're funny. Keep it up, MTW.

#29 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 08:49 PM | Reply

"leave the serious topics of discussion to the grown-ups."

Sure....that group includes you, your hand, and your poster of Matt Taibbi.

Everyone else is laughing at you.

#30 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 08:50 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Everyone else is laughing at you.

#30 | POSTED BY EBERLY

Tiny arrows from a tiny person.

I get it, your world view is still at the junior high school level.

Go fondle Fox News.

#31 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 08:55 PM | Reply

You posted this thread, idiot.

Now you're crying that it was set on fire and shoved up your ass.

By everyone.....

I'd tell you to get over it, MTW.....but you can't, drama queen.

#32 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 08:59 PM | Reply

You posted this thread, idiot.

Now you're crying that it was set on fire and shoved up your ass.

By everyone.....

I'd tell you to get over it, MTW.....but you can't, drama queen.

#32 | POSTED BY EBERLY

WTF are you babbling about, sweetheart?

You picked a bad time to stop sniffing glue.

Go back to scheming about your junior high school level personal problems.

#33 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-18 09:06 PM | Reply

If people have lost respect for Taibbi because of the raunchy book (which was hiding in plain site), then I'm saying out loud that I don't respect people like Lally -- she's so damaged now almost 20 years later that she feels justified to push this smear?

This is a goofy double standard. Taibbi and Ames wrote sleazy lies about people in their newspaper and book and you're calling it a "smear" when one of the people they wronged responds.

The smear was what they wrote originally, not her measured and fair response. Taibbi and Ames have apologized for things they wrote back then. Why are you continuing to claim that the people who apologized were hurt by the people who deserved the apologies?

Walker Bragman is engaging in a lot of spin in that Paste Magazine article. My favorite is this part: "Multiple former staffers we spoke to told us that Ames did have a young girlfriend named Natasha, but none believed she was 15." Would "nobody thought she was 15" have been an acceptable defense for Roy Moore? Of course not.

#34 | Posted by rcade at 2017-12-18 10:18 PM | Reply

"You picked a bad time to stop sniffing glue."

Probably. It's never a good time.

Taibbi deserves his criticism.

Is some of it going to come from folks only interested in smearing him? Sure. So what?

#35 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-18 10:27 PM | Reply

Avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. -- ROM. 12:19

#36 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-12-18 10:41 PM | Reply

This is a goofy double standard. Taibbi and Ames wrote sleazy lies about people in their newspaper and book and you're calling it a "smear" when one of the people they wronged responds.

The smear was what they wrote originally, not her measured and fair response. Taibbi and Ames have apologized for things they wrote back then. Why are you continuing to claim that the people who apologized were hurt by the people who deserved the apologies?

Walker Bragman is engaging in a lot of spin in that Paste Magazine article. My favorite is this part: "Multiple former staffers we spoke to told us that Ames did have a young girlfriend named Natasha, but none believed she was 15." Would "nobody thought she was 15" have been an acceptable defense for Roy Moore? Of course not.

#34 | POSTED BY RCADE

Lies are lies, satire is satire, and context is everything ... the environment Taibbi and Ames wrote their book was a time in Russia where freedoms, after 7 decades of authoritarian repression in all aspects of society was the norm, were rushed forth at warp speed -- and those freedoms included all the bad aspects of western society like greed run amok and the rise of mega-rich oligarchs, prostitution run rampant, and gangster inspired violence...

In that environment Taibbi and Ames wrote their raunchy satire.

Lally is not providing a measured and fair response, she's engaging as an opportunist who is taking advantage of the #MeToo climate -- no where in her hit piece in the WaPo is she qualifying what's she's saying with what was actually going on in Russia at that time.

Taibbi and Ames went after her as a western journalist who was obviously writing hack fluff pieces favoring the corrupt western influence during the Russian Yeltsin period.

So to exact her revenge she paints the easiest picture possible: "Taibbi harassed her" while not getting in the way of any innuendo that mistakenly points to sexual harassment "or worse" -- that's what I call a smear.

And, no offense, invoking Roy Moore's name in this discussion is pretty low.

#37 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-19 07:26 AM | Reply

It sounds like Matt Taibbi is another Tucker Max...before there was a Tucker Max.

That's OK..."I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell" was a funny movie. I think maybe the disconnect comes from the fact that many took Taibbi to be a serious journalist.

#38 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-12-19 11:36 AM | Reply

And I don't think "satire" is the term you're looking for to define Taibbi's style. I think it's more commonly called "fratire".

#39 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-12-19 11:43 AM | Reply

"I think maybe the disconnect comes from the fact that many took Taibbi to be a serious journalist."

A journalist can write more than one type of articles. Just because you are limited to one very narrow view point don't pretend everyone else is.

#40 | Posted by danni at 2017-12-19 12:23 PM | Reply

"Would "nobody thought she was 15" have been an acceptable defense for Roy Moore? Of course not."

Sort of depends on why you are examining their character. If it is because they are running for Chief Justice of the Alabama SC or for the U.S. Senate that is one thing, if you are wanting to read an expose on economics and politics it's quite another, seems to me.

#41 | Posted by danni at 2017-12-19 12:26 PM | Reply

"Would "nobody thought she was 15" have been an acceptable defense for Roy Moore? Of course not."

If she had a fake ID that says she's 18 is the only way.

#42 | Posted by snoofy at 2017-12-19 12:30 PM | Reply

Lies are lies, satire is satire ...

It isn't satire to claim that what you've written is non-fiction.

They're using "it was satire" as a blanket excuse for some irresponsible and malicious reporting in The Exile, not just works of clear humorous intent.

They made a choice to portray themselves as the kinds of American men who gleefully degraded their female coworkers and pursued a Russian girl after finding out she was 15 *because* she was 15. They wanted to seem like gonzo Hunter Thompson style writers and hard partying bros.

When you make that choice, you have to live with it. This is part of their story. Lally is part of their story, too, and she has a right to tell it no matter how long she waited.

#43 | Posted by rcade at 2017-12-19 01:07 PM | Reply

"A journalist can write more than one type of articles. Just because you are limited to one very narrow view point don't pretend everyone else is."

Are you talking about me, Pinch or someone else...because I agree.

Just because Jenna Jameson (or any other porn star) does porn, doesn't mean they're not capable of being a serious artist...but it does mean they're going to carry a stigma is going to make many people question their jusdgemnet...right or wrong.

Had Taibbi stayed with Fratire, he'd probably be ignored by most of the mainstream media. And if played his cards right, maybe he'd even have displaced Tucker Max as the godfather of fratire.

And if Tucker Max ever decides he wants to be some sort of mainstream media personality, he's going to have a very tough time...especially in the current climate.

#44 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-12-19 02:32 PM | Reply

Taibbi has often been an excellent muck-raking journalist in recent years. I don't dispute that at all, and I am not hoping he is drummed out of the business. People can make mistakes, show they learned from them and be forgiven. I know the Internet mob mentality never wants to accept that, but I do.

#45 | Posted by rcade at 2017-12-19 04:20 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"A journalist can write more than one type of articles. Just because you are limited to one very narrow view point don't pretend everyone else is."

Are you talking about me, Pinch or someone else...because I agree.

#44 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER

That was Danni talking to you in post #40, so you agree with Danni.

#46 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-19 07:37 PM | Reply

46

okay. but just so you're clear, nobody agrees with you.

#47 | Posted by eberly at 2017-12-19 07:41 PM | Reply

okay. but just so you're clear, nobody agrees with you.

#47 | POSTED BY EBERLY

Listen, sweetheart ... just so I'm clear, you're full of your own BS, making your limp noodle junior high school level assessment as to what's going on, moot.

#48 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-19 07:59 PM | Reply

"That was Danni talking to you in post #40, so you agree with Danni."

Which means I agree with you, right? Just because Taibbi was a fratirist doesn't mean he's only a fratisrist.

#49 | Posted by madbomber at 2017-12-19 09:10 PM | Reply

Which means I agree with you, right? Just because Taibbi was a fratirist doesn't mean he's only a fratisrist.

#49 | POSTED BY MADBOMBER

After a quick peruse of the phrase "fratisrist", sure, we agree ... see, I'm reasonable!

#50 | Posted by PinchALoaf at 2017-12-20 09:28 AM | Reply

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