Michelle Malkin’s column today runs down the Brett Kimberlin-tied campaign of intimidation against those who are exercising their First Amendment rights as online journalists, analysts, and bloggers:
Investigative journalist/researcher Mandy Nagy, who blogs at the late Andrew Breitbart’s Internet media powerhouse Breitbart.com, dared to chronicle Kimberlin’s lucrative business and political ventures over the past two years. Kimberlin has a large hand in two well-funded outfits, Velvet Revolutionand the Justice Through Music Project, that have received funding from the likes of George Soros’s Tides Foundation and left-wing activist/singer Barbra Streisand. The charitable groups have viciously attacked prominent conservative individuals and groups, including Breitbart, investigative journalist James O’Keefe, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Nagy has been hounded relentlessly online and falsely accused of wild criminal conspiracies by Kimberlin associates for blowing the whistle on his shady online network.
After providing brief pro bono legal services to a liberal blogger who refused to whitewash Kimberlin’s past, conservative blogger and lawyer Aaron Walker lost his job. His employer was terrified by the thought of Kimberlin bombing his office and also fired Walker’s wife, who had worked for the same firm. Walker is embroiled in Kafkaesque, free speech-squelching litigation with serial lawsuit filer Kimberlin in Maryland. Last week, an inept judge who admitted abject ignorance about the Internet – and appalling apathy toward key, free-speech Supreme Court cases — essentially gagged Walker from exercising his First Amendment rights and blogging about Kimberlin. (AUDIO at Lee Strahanan’s. Transcripts at Patterico’s.) Kimberlin pulled off a snow job in court, bizarrely claiming that an independent online effort to support Walker and expose Kimberlin’s past amounted to a criminal terror campaign against him. Renowned constitutional law professor Eugene Volokh of UCLA is providing pro bono help to appeal the order against Walker.
National Bloggers Club President Ali Akbar was targeted for spearheading charity efforts for Kimberlin targets; stalkers publicized his mother’s home, and Texas authorities are now investigating. Another conservative blogger who had the audacity to report on Walker’s plight, Robert Stacy McCain, was forced tomove out of his home last month after Kimberlin phoned his wife’s employer and intimidated his family.
Never in the eight years that I have worked as an independent blogger have I seen such a concerted threat to the fundamental right of citizen journalists to speak their minds freely and without fear of bodily harm. As former Justice Department official Christian Adams points out, it is a federal violation of 18 U.S.C. §241 to conspire to deprive someone of his “free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States.”
Members of Congress swore an oath to uphold the Constitution — all of it. Who means it?
Malkin and other bloggers, including Ace, has orchestrated a day of “Going dark to urge congressional action: Who will protect the freedom to blog?”
I will support it, for reasons which may become clearer when I make a too long-delayed announcement next week. Accordingly, this will be my last BizzyBlog post today until very late Friday evening.
The past two weeks have made it clear that center-right bloggers and their advocates are almost all alone on this. The establishment press won’t start caring until enough legislators speak out (and even that might not be enough), and left-oriented supposed guardians of basic freedoms like the ACLU are, as far as I can tell, totally AWOL.
Michelle’s list of who to contact:
GOP Rep. Frank Wolf (Va.) – Ask him to investigate Kimberlin-related charities.
Phone: (202) 225-5136
Fax: (202) 225-0437
US Department of Justice
Office of the Attorney General Public Comment Line – 202-353-1555
Previous related posts are here.
ALSO, from Patterico — “Again, I will say: there are mainstream media journalists who are scared to write about this story. I do not say this lightly. I have been told this is the case.”