Circular Shootout at the Big Breitbart Corral

Ghost Breitbart’s ‘Happy Cult’ Degenerates Into Sad Mess Of Confusion And Backbiting

We think they are all bozos on that bus.As we all know from the plot of virtually every big Hollywood gangster movie ever made, when there’s a gang of loutish thugs and the head lout is removed, the remaining loutish thugs invariably turn on each other in a frenzy of loutishness and thuggery. This is apparently what is going on at rightwing internet concern following the sudden death of Andrew Breitbart on March 1 of this year, according to this juicy Buzzfeed story by McKay Coppins, which says the late lout’s “web empire” is now “plagued by an unusual degree of disorganization and rampant infighting as his disciples battle for ownership of his legacy.” Golly. No one could have seen THAT coming!

Actually, Your Wonkette didn’t, at least not quite. But our Ken Layne did at least note, in Wonkette’s initial story on the bloated bloviator’s shuffling off this mortal coil, that the remaining crew was not exactly a model of intellectual rigor:

Breitbart leaves behind a wife and four children, along with hundreds of idiotic half-literate bloggers for his various websites who share his zeal for mindlessly attacking every non-wingnut aspect of life on Earth but lack his amiable personality.

It’s not quite a prediction of a terminal fuck-tussle in the Breitbartosphere, but it’s a pretty good assessment of the remaining management team at Arkham Asylum.

So! What exciting News McNuggets does Coppins serve up regarding goings-on among successors of the Wingnut Ozymandias? Look upon these jerks, ye righties, and despair:

  • Chaos and confusion! The portrait that emerged…was one of a disorganized, downtrodden army of conservative foot soldiers eager to carry out their fallen leader’s mission, but deeply divided over how to interpret his battle plan.

    “We were running a kind of happy cult when Andrew was in charge, and when Andrew died everyone had an incentive to spin what they thought he was up to,” said one former employee. “If he knew he was going to die, I’m sure he would have called a dinner the night before and given us the tablets or something…. But he didn’t.”

  • Stars Drifting out of Breitbart Orbit… Dana Loesch, a CNN contributor who is the face of the Breitbart empire these days and its only veritable TV star, hasn’t written a post in more than a month — and one source said she has sought a job at The Daily Caller.
  • …Or Just Burning Out! A current Breitbart staffer singled out a colleague, John Nolte, who has devoted much of his time to attacking journalists on Twitter rather than moving the ball with reporting.

    “He’s capable of tremendous insight but… he’s written the same post for three years,” the colleague complained.

  • Rank Amateurishness And Sloppy Journamalism! “They don’t even know how to do basic stuff, like, what a lede is. Like, maybe you should inform your readers in the first paragraph what your story is about,” said a high-profile conservative journalist who works for another outlet.
  • Out of Touch Management! [CEO Larry] Solov, [editor-in-chief Joel] Pollak and a few others run the company from an office in L.A., but the site’s contributors are spread across the country — and many complain that the editors are all but impossible to reach.

    E-mails and phone calls go unreturned for days, two sources said, and the people at the top of the masthead are so unresponsive that one employee sent a notarized letter to inform Pollak he was quitting.

  • Editorial Interference — The Bad Kind! One reporter who eventually left the site complained that Pollak would regularly assign reported stories to advance his take on the news, and if the reporting deviated even slightly from his preferred message, he would simply rewrite the article.

    “If you investigated it and it didn’t come out in the way he wanted it, he would be upset,” said the reporter, who complained that editing sometimes introduced factual errors. Pollak denied the claim, and said most of the rewriting he does is to protect the company against potential lawsuits.

Among the True Wingnut Believers, however, the worst fear is that under the new management, has lost its cherished quality of independence, that certain loose-cannon quality that outsiders might instead call “bugfuck-crazy irresponsibility,” as seen in the Shirley Sherrod smear or the Anthony Weiner dickopalooza. With the death of Breitbart himself, the site “lost a media savant… [who understood] how a good stunt, or a sophisticated prank could drive national news cycles for days.” In short, without the head clown, the circus just isn’t all that much fun anymore:

He was a partisan prankster with a knack for showmanship whose self-awareness and sense of humor endeared him to the press, and helped his scoops go national. These days, the only time reporters pay attention to Breitbartians is when they’re clicking the “block” button on Twitter.


About the author

Doktor Zoom Is the pseudonym of Marty Kelley, who lives in Boise, Idaho. He acquired his nym from a fan of Silver-Age comics after being differently punctual to too many meetings. He is not a medical doctor, although he has a real PhD (in Rhetoric and Composition).

View all articles by Doktor Zoom
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        1. sullivanst

          Are you sure you shouldn't use the future semi-conditionally modified subinverted plagal past subjunctive intentional?

          1. C_R_Eature

            Well I, for one, have really warmed up tho the whole MLP idea and now think it's Cleverly Ironic. Also, you've opened my eyes to the world of the Brony. A thing I would never have imagined. Therefore, I feel I need to return the favor.

            Behold: My Little Cephalopony.

          1. SorosBot

            Other way around; she's roped me into the pony thing. However if she starts quoting Buffy too then you can blame me.

        1. Grokenstein

          They do. She's called Zecora and she's hugely popular. She's a zebra who segregates herself deep in the jungle in a hut filled with African masks and bubbling cauldrons and she speaks in rhyme and wears an assload of gold and
          OH MY GOD

      1. finallyhappy

        I had to ask a 13 year old girl at Dragon Con to explain what a Bronie was. I do not get it but I never got my Little Pony even when my daughter had some.

  1. Loch_Nessosaur

    And here I thought the “bugfuck-crazy irresponsibility” would be self perpetuating. Go figure.

  2. HRH_Maddie

    Breitbart really gave that place a shred of credibility. Without him it just feels more like a sham news site. A Wonkette, if you will.

    1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      What credibility? During the Sherrod incident fatty pretty much said he doesn't have any ethics or morals…just a fat, bitter, racially incensed attack dog. Like Limblob minus the Oxycontin and naked Dominican slave-boys.

  3. actor212

    “He’s capable of tremendous insight but… he’s written the same post for three years,” the colleague complained.

    Patience, my friend. He has to look up a lot of words to check their spelling.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      As someone who scans stuff from Christianist textbooks every weekend, I am not going to comment on that particular criticism of Mr. Nolte.

  4. emmelemm

    a terminal fuck-tussle

    See, in general, a fuck-tussle doesn't sound so bad; kinda fun, in fact. (Unless, of course, it's terminal.)

  5. actor212

    They don’t even know how to do basic stuff, like, what a lede is. Like, maybe you should inform your readers in the first paragraph what your story is about

    Or maybe post facts. Or check sources. Or check facts. Or type fast. Or interview someone instead of posting press releases. Or…

    1. Willardbot9000_V2.5

      Or write with even an inkling of logic…or not seem like deeply upset, identity confused douchecanoes whose only guiding force is outrage over the lack of a constant celebration of white privilege, white prestige and white superiority on the left. It seems like the quickest way to achieve blood to the face with a winger (aside from saying Obama has accomplished any good including being alive) is to insult white people, rich people and evangelical Christians. It's like the whole party is that douchey yokel who slapped Sidney Poitier in "In the Heat of the Night" for not being sufficiently "yes massa" with his inbred asshole self.

  6. Lucidamente1

    "One thing Breitbart's followers do agree on," added Coppins, "is that young Riley Waggaman is eminently gropeable."

  7. Giveusabob

    Garth Brooks was brielfy the alter-ego indie rocker of moderate acclaim Chris Gaines. Since I can't recall having seen both Breitbart and Brooks in the same room together, might one assume Brooks has again returned to his true self, having completed his mission?

      1. Doktor Zoom

        Or for that matter, Frank Herbert, seeing as how his offspring have fucked over the franchise….

        1. SorosBot

          Now be fair; Kevin J. Anderson bears as much fault for fucking over the franchise as Herbert the Lesser.

  8. actor212

    the people at the top of the masthead are so unresponsive that one employee sent a notarized letter to inform Pollak he was quitting.

    Errr, if the intent was to be read, wouldn't a certified letter work better?

    1. Giveusabob

      I'm guessing a singing bellygram might be more effective. Especially if you can get them to do COD.

    2. SavageDrummer

      You're talking about an ex breitbarter here… I'd be shocked if it wasn't smeared with poop first…

  9. Yellerdawg

    They will schism. One sect will end up worshiping BB's cousin and his descendants, the others will worship different leaders. Eventually, they will attack each other's pilgrimages and funerals, then just start to blow things up pretty much randomly. Oh yeah, and don't ever draw a Breitbart cartoon.

    1. GeorgiaBurning

      I'm more than OK with that as long as they have no control of any useful natural resources.

    1. rickmaci

      Nobody reported seeing the wooden stake in his heart so I am sticking with "allegedly dead Breitbart."

        1. MonkeyBiz

          Saying "Andrew Breitbart was a terrible person, and in his death he has made the world a better place than he did in life." was what got me banned from Gawker.

          1. shelwood46

            Not anymore. They put in the world's worst commenting system and seem to have no way to ban anyone ever now. The wingnuts and stormfronters figured this out and invaded. It is truly a shithole at this point.

  10. Joshua Norton

    Ghost Breitbart’s ‘Happy Cult’ Degenerates Into Sad Mess Of Confusion And Backbiting

    You say "degenerates", I say "raises their journalistic standards".

    Potato, potahto.

      1. zumpie

        Very insulting to disease ridden wharf rats.

        I'm good with comparing him to roaches or pigeons, though

    1. Tequila Mockingbird

      Breitbart, I served with common crackwhores. I knew common crackwhores. Common crackwhores were friends of mine. Breitbart, you're no common crackwhore.

    2. Wile E. Quixote

      Not true, unlike Andrew Breitbart the average common crackwhore doesn't have a frothy mix of semen from at least 12 different men, ground up oxycontin and Adderall tablets, Four Loko and Taco Bell Dorito Tacos in their stomachs when they expire, it's pretty much just crack and jism.

  11. MacRaith

    “If he knew he was going to die, I’m sure he would have called a dinner the night before and given us the tablets or something…. But he didn’t.”

    And, of course, the fact that Breitbart didn't know he was going to die is proof that he was killed on Obama's orders. Hillary Clinton probably did the actual deed.

  12. Callyson has described BuzzFeed as "a left-wing rag;" has turned our editor's name into a verb, "Bensmithing," meant to describe a sophisticated form of journalistic malpractice in which damaging facts about Democrats are reported as a means of covering them up…

    We had to disclose the facts to hide them.


      1. Lionel[redacted]Esq

        Come one, Fare, it's all ball bearings now days. If you report the facts, there is no cover up, so there is nothing to report. It's like how Obama said 24 hours that we would not bend to terror, or told CBS the next day that the attack on Benghazi was more than a unorganized mob. Clearly he said this to make sure that the cover up succeeded.

    1. MonkeyBiz

      The first one is rather nutty, but there is truth in the second; just not the truth the Breitbart Army thinks there is.

      See, reporting damaging facts about Democrats is viewed as a way of establishing false credibility. By being able to point and go "Look, we go after Democrats too!", you're establishing non-left wing credibility.

      Of course, that all goes out the window as soon as you report regular old non-controversial facts that disagree with what the Breitbart Army agrees on, or print something damaging about a Republican. Then you're just another partisan hack.

      So really, the only answer is to continue to print damaging stuff about both parties in the hopes that the non-bugfuck crazy one will change, and the other will die off.

  13. edgydrifter

    This is what Conservative Jonestown looks like when the leader expires ahead of schedule. Everybody is arguing about what flavor Kool-Aid to use and nobody remembered to pick up paper cups at the store on their way to Guyana.

  14. asterixaverni

    What is with the fucking ponies?

    …“bugfuck-crazy irresponsibility,”

    I've been hoping that his website would really explode with the insanity after his death. That another bat-shit crazy asshole would emerge and take his place on the Throne of Dumbfuck, but sadly that hasn't happened. Probably won't. He may have been the only functional pyscho in the land of the insane.

    1. bikerlaureate

      The idea of stunts or pranks driving "national news cycles for days” was irritating… until I remembered that the media being manipulated is much more interested in a horse race to drive ad revenue than anything resembling "news".

    2. tessiee

      "I don't think "sophisticated" means what they think it means."

      Given their intellect, my best guess would be "remembering to run away after ringing the doorbell, instead of just standing on the doorstep with their mouths hanging open".

    1. MonkeyBiz

      My uncle (a New Yorker) refers to my sister and I (both native Hoosiers) as his Cornpone Niece and Nephew. In fact, when writing him emails, I sign them "CPN".

      No real relevance, other than this is the second place I've heard the word "cornpone" used, the first being from my uncle.

  15. Oblios_Cap

    “plagued by an unusual degree of disorganization and rampant infighting as his disciples battle for ownership of his legacy.”

    Damn. Jesus' disciples didn't start that sort of thing for a couple of centuries.

    1. doloras

      Yeah they did. Within ten years Paul was on the scene and wrestling for control with Peter and Jesus's brother James.

  16. KeepFnThatChicken

    They don’t even know how to do basic stuff, like, what a lede is. Like, maybe you should inform your readers in the first paragraph what your story is about

    Or don't give a fuck anyway, and just print what your hot little angry hands say first. Ghost was probly all like: "Get me those five goddamn thousand page views, or vote for Obama out of your cardboard box!!"

  17. cousinitt

    Breitbart married the daughter of Orson Bean. Orson's father George, helped to found the ACLU. Orson appeared on To Tell the Truth teevee game show. Sadly, the corrupt lawyers at the ACLU stopped our hero from uncovering the truth before Breitbart could stumble to the next gay bar to use the pay telephone and call in his Pulitzer Prize winning expose of whatever it was he was going to write when he was assassinated by a lethal injection of cholesterol.

    1. Doktor Zoom

      See, I thought that was going to end with something about Breitbart getting divorced due to his pathological inability To Tell the Truth.

    2. actor212

      Orson Bean also voiced Frodo in that hideous Bakshi Rankin-Bass television version of LotR.

      (edited to correct for serious stoneage in the late 70s)

  18. Goonemeritus

    “These days, the only time reporters pay attention to Breitbartians is when they’re clicking the “block” button on Twitter”

    Speaking of which you know what would improve Intense Debate, a block follower option.

    1. Rotundo_

      Given what a roiling clusterfuck ID is, the thought of someone trying to add a feature and mess with code that already is buggier than a Tiajuana cathouse sends a real cold shot up my spine. It would probably blow up the internets.

  19. zumpie

    1. Always happy to hear about Puggies crashing and burning and revealing their asses

    2. While I'm sorry poor, sweet Fluttershy looks so scared (though I'm sure Dashie will save her in the nick of time, as always), it looks Spike's gonna buy the farm. Getting him off my screen would make me very, very happy.

  20. Tundra Grifter

    "… rampant infighting as his disciples battle for ownership of his legacy."

    As in?

    "You take it!"

    "Hell no! I'd rather live on a toxic waste dump. It's yours!"

    "Oh no you don't! You can't stick me with that pile of crap! I don't want it!"

    "No way! You promised us you would take it!"


  21. sullivanst

    So, the corpse is starting to disintegrate? Sorry, wingnuts, looks like his chance at beatification is gone.

    1. MonkeyBiz

      So long as there is still enough muscle and tendon attached to those bones, they will shamble on. There's an army of zombie right-wing media sites out there.

  22. TribecaMike

    Reassuring to know that being a high-functioning alcoholic needn't effect one's leadership abilities. Now if I can only get my business parter/wife to fall for that yarn.

  23. HarryButtle

    Hey, what's with the little dinosaur on the pony bus (bottom left corner)? And the little alligator-thing (same corner)? I was led to believe that this pony club was exclusive…

    1. MissTaken

      Spike is Twilight Sparkle's baby dragon assistant and Gummy (the baby alligator) is Pinkie Pie's pet. It's okay, though, he has no teeth.

      I need help.

    2. banana_bread

      Gummy the alligator is Pinkie Pie's pet. Spike the baby dragon is Twilight Sparkle's unpaid intern.

      Stop staring at me, I have a five-year-old daughter.

      …okay fine, and I like the show. It's wacky!

      1. Doktor Zoom

        Or when "Cousin Oliver" moved in with the Bradys. Or the Partridges, I don't remember and am too lazy to google it.

  24. BornInATrailer

    I'm not a Brony hater because that would be far too trendy. But I think we need to pump the brakes on the Ponies.

  25. widestanceromance

    And I bet every tile surface in the restrooms has been razor-scratched to rubble by now. Once the coke residue + dried sweat was gone, they simply kept snorting porcelain dust. Now that's gone and it's getting ugly.

  26. Lionel[redacted]Esq

    Given that most Conservative bloggers just make shit up, and then repeat the shit that other Conservative bloggers made up ("Apology Tour," Birth Certificate, etc. etc.), how is this any different than normal?

  27. Biel_ze_Bubba

    Sort of like the decline of National Review after Buckley kicked the bucket. (I know Buckley was actually smart and stuff, but death has sort of a leveling effect.)

  28. shelwood46

    Nolte was in a twitter stream I was following during the debates. Every single tweet made me want to hunt him down and punch him in the face while screaming, "Die, clueless idiot!!"

    With votes.

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