I was previously a constitutional law and civil rights litigator and am now a journalist. I am the author of three New York Times bestselling books -- "How Would a Patriot Act" (a critique of Bush executive power theories), "Tragic Legacy" (documenting the Bush legacy), and With Liberty and Justice for Some (critiquing America's two-tiered justice system and the collapse of the rule of law for its political and financial elites). My fifth book - No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA and the US Surveillance State - will be released on April 29, 2014 by Holt/Metropolitan.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Jonah Goldberg converses with critic

On Jun 12, 2009, at 3:58 PM, Kurt Logan wrote:

Hi Jonah,

I read this today -- thought it was funny:

And then, finally, we have Jonah Goldberg actually anointing himself as the leading opponent of affirmative action on the ground that it unfairly penalizes and victimizes his group and allows achievement for reasons other than merit. This is someone who might be the single most compelling poster child for the ability of white males to advance in America for reasons having to do with everything except merit. His entire career is attributable to his mom. He was almost 30 years old and was working as the "Vice President" of her tiny company -- with no political or writing background -- when he leveraged his mom's sleazy involvement in the Lewinsky sex scandal and her contacts with the right-wing noise machine into a job with National Review, to which he has clung ever since. So much of the right-wing pundit class -- which also complains endlessly about the unfairness of affirmative action in undermining "merit-based" achievement -- similarly owe their entire careers to their moms and dads.

Yet this is the person -- Lucianne's nepotistic creation -- who is now prancing around as the Standard-Bearer of merit-based accomplishment and speaking out on behalf of fellow white males and Republicans who are treated so unfairly by our society and our media. Yet again, it amounts to nothing more than: my group -- the one I was born into and trained to love -- is being victimized and treated so badly. These claims of self-victimization persist even when their group historically occupied and continues to occupy positions of power and influence far disproportionate to their actual numbers. As Atrios put it on Twitter: so delusional and self-absorbed is the whole debate over Sonia Sotomayor's nomination and related affirmative action grievances that it amounts to nothing more than: "if only I had grown up a female Puerto Rican in a Bronx [public housing project], think of all the opportunities I would have had."

You can read the rest here.

Keep on rockin'.


On Fri, Jun 12, 2009 at 1:17 PM, JonahNRO <> wrote:

It's all nonsense.

Sent from Jonah's iPhone

On Sat, Jun 13, 2009 at 5:19 PM, Kurt Logan wrote:

Dear Jonah,

Speaking of nonsense, this is why no one outside of your echo chamber takes you seriously:

"From what I can tell," explained Jonah Goldberg, the author of the 2008 bestseller "Liberal Fascism" and a writer for National Review, "his hatreds echoed the kind of stuff we hear from the Kos crowd, Chris Matthews, Andrew Sullivan et al." Goldberg called Von Brunn "objectively crazy," but argued that "his hatreds would be easier to find at an ANSWER rally than at CPAC."

Even by Goldberg standards, this is remarkable. Adam Serwer responded, "That's right. A neo-nazi who hates blacks, Jews, and thinks Obama wasn't born in the United States is going to be more at home with a group called 'ACT NOW TO STOP WAR AND END RACISM' rather than the political convention where they're selling Obama Waffles and conservative figures get applause for questioning Obama's citizenship."

I also found it interesting that Goldberg would draw a parallel between "an ANSWER rally" and the annual Conservative Political Action Conference. Are they relative equals in Goldberg's estimation?

Either way, his remarks may be par for the course, but that doesn't make them any less ridiculous. James von Brunn wrote a pamphlet entitled, "Kill the Best Gentiles: A new, hard-hitting expose of the JEW CONSPIRACY to destroy the White gene-pool." He has also written that "Hilter's worse mistake" was that "he didn't gas the Jews."

If Goldberg thinks this "echoes the kind of stuff" we hear from Daily Kos posters, Chris Matthews, and Andrew Sullivan, Goldberg's perspective is even more twisted than I realized.

Have you ever taken an intellectually defensible position in your life, or do you just stick to right-wing propaganda?



On Sat, Jun 13, 2009 at 2:28 PM, Jonah Goldberg <> wrote:

Yawn. This is childish nonsense too. I'd defend myself in depth, but what's the point with someone like you? Suffice it to say, my #1 bestselling book has been translated into several languages and positively reviewed and/or taken quite seriously by quite a few people outside my "echo chamber." It was published by the tiffany imprint of one of the most respected publishing houses. I'm one of the most widely syndicated columnists in America (some non-echo-chamber editors must take me seriously). And non-echo-chamber outlets like NPR and countless universities invite me to speak regularly. Oh, about that idiotic Salon story, the guy knows jack shit about how I spent my twenties. I'd compare my resume to pretty much any prominent leftwing blogger. I know this all inconvenient to process and please don't take it as an invitation to debate, I'm done with you.

By the way, this email is not for publication.


On Jun 13, 2009, at 5:56 PM, Kurt Logan wrote:

Thanks, Jonah. Your wisdom is great and truly your record is impressive. But may I humbly point out that discussing your book sales and your success on the lecture circuit comes across as really, really desperate? I am sad that you are done with me; I have enjoyed our time together.

Keep on keepin' it real,


From: JonahNRO <>
Date: Sat, Jun 13, 2009 at 4:29 PM
Subject: Re: Affirmative action
To: Kurt Logan <>

I'm sure it comes across as desperate to you because that's the only reaction you could have. I'm sure your own accomplishments are awe inspiring. Why don't you list them for me?

Sent from Jonah's iPhone