Armando Outed

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Never mind what I thought that meant when the phrase started popping up all over the place last night. No. Armando's effeminacy is not the issue of the day. Armando has been outed as, horror of horrors, an attorney. What? You already knew he was an attorney? You and every other reader of the Daily Kos family of sites. But the National Review Online dug for the real dirt. Not only is Armando an attorney. He's apparently a corporate shill, representing of all damned things Wal-Mart.

Armando announced last night that he will take his ball and go home. Leaving the blogosphere no poorer, in my opinion. The reaction from kossacks has been swift and sure to condemn this violation of the sanctity of Armando's private life. But how private was it? He posts under his own name and tells all the world that he's an attorney. In the, I'm roughly estimating here, millions of posts with which he has deluged numerous websites, he has revealed many more of his particulars. It can't have been hard to reverse engineer his identity. If he was so interested in protecting his privacy, why didn't he make an effort to do so? I have no beef with anonymity -- note the dearth of information about me on this site -- but it does require a modicum of restraint. Armando is not the first and will most certainly not be the last "anonymous" blogger to be undone by a colossal ego and need for attention.

Noticeably absent from the outcry over Armando's martyrdom is any discussion of the issue raised by the National Review. It's the hypocrisy, stupid. But then, anyone who thinks Daily Kos is truly a progressive website, leading the charge against the corporatists who are choking the life out of democracy, isn't paying attention.

Look. I don't begrudge Armando his right to make a living. And I know enough about law to know that a big part of a lawyers job is to protect the law itself. (For example, I fully support the ACLU in its defense of odious clients like the Nazis in Skokie, IL, to protect the Constitutional freedoms of all Americans.) For all I know Armando is protecting the one aspect of Wal-Mart's business practices that is noble and true. I can't imagine what that would be, but that's neither here nor there.

I get it. I know bloggers take very seriously the right to privacy and anonymity, even if that amounts to keeping the blogosphere safe for liars, frauds, and hypocrites. It was definitely brought home to me when I published this piece on soj and was vilified by the multitude and banned from Daily Kos, even though it was soj who outed soj. Not me.

The thing that comes through loud and clear from both the National Review expose and the resulting brouhaha, is how very seriously bloggers take themselves. Kos, who is far from anonymous, comes across as stunningly arrogant. In other words the piece is accurate. It quotes from an interview he did with a Swedish magazine to great effect.

"I wouldn't want to be a senator or congressman. I'm able to influence politics much more effectively doing what I do. Now I can shape the national political debate. The only way I could exert more influence would be if I were president. But I’d never want that guy’s job. Never."

Wow! And there's more:

"I get lots of calls from people who want to learn how to leverage the Internet…The Swedish social democrats, for instance, asked me to come to Sweden to hold a talk, but I didn't have the time. Soon they'll have to come to Berkeley to learn the ropes."

I'm trusting that the translation is accurate and it sure as hell sounds like Kos.

At some point bloggers are going to have a make a decision about what is more important, anonymity or credibility. It's very hard to be taken seriously as an expert -- and many claim all sorts of expertise -- if you won't disclose your credentials. Anyone can say he's an attorney. We now know that Armando really is one. Some of us are a little surprised. We don't know how he finds the time. But Armando would prefer to say he's an attorney than to have us know that he really is one. Such a conundrum.

You want fame? Well fame costs.
-- Fame


Anonymous said...

Wow! You are absolutely gorgeous as well as intelligent. Your commentary is the most spot on I have read on this subject. Please Please Please may I just lick you asshole for a while?

Curmudgette said...

Oh, anonymous, that's very sweet. I've never been a fan of rimjobs so I'll have to take a pass. But thanks for asking!

Simon Malthus said...

the preceding aside, i am glad to have found your consideration of Armando's exit - in part because it relieved me of the need i'd been feeling to write something similar.

you're familiar, no doubt, with those diaries by ex-republicans, or some other lower sort, who owe their redemption to the kossack community. reading your posts i've glimpsed a similar salvation to be had by recovering from that 'weird cult of personality.'

i'm glad, in other words, to find an articulate liberal whose noticed that there's something deeply fucked up about Dkos. two days ago we discover that Kos was on his way to work for the CIA when the Dean camp scooped him; then last night Armando is unmasked as what might unchartiably, if not entirely unfairly, be termed a corporate shill. the cult is undeterred.

anyway, as a formerly trusted and now banned Dkos user, i find your criticisms of that community and some of its dominant voices to be, well, spot on.

Neo, you've made a believer out of me.

Curmudgette said...

Greetings Simon.

"Weird cult of personality," about sums it up. I suggest you wear that banning like the badge of honor it is.

And how did you know that Matrix allusions were the way to my heart?

Simon Malthus said...

the truest aim is accidental.

were you aware that a virtually identical scene occurs near the end of season one of the new Battlestar Galactica? here's the dynamic version of the line, that with just a bit of coding can work in any context:

$whitey, you've made a believer out of me.

and speaking of the cult of personality...

Curmudgette said...

Simon Malthus said...

were you aware that a virtually identical scene occurs near the end of season one of the new Battlestar Galactica?

I'm a huge fran of the new Battlestar Galactica, but I missed that somehow. Or I noticed it and forgot about it. It's been some time since I watched the first season. When we own the entire series on DVD, which we most assuredly will at some point, I'll have to pay more attention.

and speaking of the cult of personality...

Ah, to be young and a starfucker once again.

Here's what I think about that:

"A great man is coming to eat at my house. I do not wish to please him; I wish that he should wish to please me." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson from "Self-Reliance"

Simon Malthus said...

ah, to have a timesuit and a modicum of fame.

anyway, it's amusing to read that Emerson bit with the word starfucker in mind.

amusement aside, i would like to remind you in this context of that story of the man who happened upon a great sage, let us say in India. the sage bows deeply before him and the man, feeling embarrassed, says, "I'm not worthy." to which the sage replies, "Fool, I'm not bowing to you, but to the god within you."

Curmudgette said...

Namaste -- Usually translated as. "The God in me honors the God in you," but more accurately, "Me bow you." So, the secrets out. Curmudgette does yoga.


Gadfly said...


Armando's a big hypocrite, and a greedy corporate shill. (Nothing was stopping you from going to another firm, Armando, for example.)

And, it's FAR MORE than just Wal-Mart. First, Armando is a partner, not just a staff attorney, at McConnell Valdes. So, all the company's clients are his, in a sense.

And those clients include:
1. Altria (nee Philip Morris)
2. Multiple members of Big Pharma
3. GE Capital

Read more about it on my blog. In fact, to me, this raises the question of whether he was trying to protect his anonymity not for any reasons related to his blogging per se, but to hide it from his corporate clients.

NOTE: I got booted from Kos Friday after two successive diaries of mine commenting on this issue got deleted there. I’ve done several posts on my blog related to this about the cult-like attitude of many Kossacks, which must be at least passively allowed by Markos himself and his right-hand Goebbels, Armando.

Anonymous said...

Armando is apparently a Hindu--he has been reincarnated as lower form of life:


"Poiuynick" appeared within days of Armando's "disappearance", is extremely prolific during daylight hours, and...well, writes like Armando.

Here's a sampler:

Oh please (1+ / 0-)

Recommended by:

Not agreeing with you is not laughing it off. This is your fundamental problem.

you see disagreeemtn with you as not believing in the need for election reform.

Take it out the cork please.

by poiuynick on Mon Jun 19, 2006 at 03:33:43 PM PDT

[ Parent ]

Anonymous said...

And in case you doubt that it IS Armando...