Mensch Bartender Scott Prouty Needs Our Help Now…

Commentor SueL fowarded the link to Scott Prouty’s GoFundMe bleg:

I’m the person that released the now famous Mitt Romney 47 percent video. I’m a regular guy who cares about social justice and the future of the United States. I shot the video and shared it because it was important for citizens to know the full truth about a man who had a chance of becoming president. If you appreciate what I did, please consider donating to help with my current and future legal expenses.

Any funds left over will be used to to help me go back to school.

It’s always been my dream to attend law school. I’d like to be a socially responsible lawyer who can help the 47 percent navigate our legal system. Thank you for your donations!

Please see or for confirmation this is real. Thank you all!

Here’s a link to Prouty’s MSNBC interview this morning:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Scott Prouty, the 38-year-old bartender behind the infamous 47% video dropped by NOW with Alex Wagner on Friday, saying it would be “the last television interview that I do.”…

“I have a pre-existing condition, I was diagnosed with a genetic blood disease when I was about 30-years-old and they denied me for health care coverage,” he told the panel. “And so I mean, I have an idea of what it takes and what people go through when that happens to you and you’re out of luck. I don’t think he gets that. ‘Hey it’s not a game’ for these people with a heart condition when they’re 45.”…

“I don’t think it’s good for America to be dividing by classes,” Prouty–who remains a political independent–said. “I think it’s the one percent versus everybody else. And I think it’s those people who have control at the top.”

And before all you humorists decide to go explain to Mr. Prouty what a terrible idea it would be to pursue his dream career, Wonkette‘s Stefan BC has already taken care of that for you!:

… Seriously Scott, you are obviously someone who has principles and sense of bravery that put most of us other under-employed drones to shame. As a law school student ourselves however it is with a heavy heart that we must advise you to keep your wonderfully unsullied conscience and stay the fuck away from this awful snake pit of despair that defines legal education. Do something more honorable with your life, like lobbying for manatees or gun running in the eastern Congo. The dank and sociopathic existence in the shadows of society that provides us with concentrated feelings of human suffering that allows law students and lawyers to survive is NO place for righteous individuals like yourself. For fucks sake MITT ROMNEY is a goddamned Harvard Law grad and you know personally what a prick he is…

ETA: For the professional cynic-contrarians, here’s MoJo‘s David Corn, the guy who broke the original video before the election:

After taping an interview with MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell on Thursday night, Prouty discussed with me his reasons for establishing this fund:

After going public, I’ve received a flood of physical and legal threats in emails and tweets. People have found my address and have shown up at my door. It’s possible I may have to move. And I’ve had to contact several lawyers and have incurred legal expenses. I might incur more going forward. I always knew that if I talked about this, I could become a target, and I don’t want to be melodramatic, but some of the threats I’ve received do cause me to be concerned for my safety and that of my loved ones….

I appreciate all the support I’ve received from the beginning—and especially now. Many people have asked how they could help. This is one way. I’ve also said in interviews that if they would like to show their support they can send donations to the SPCA and the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights. These are both groups that I care about…

During his media interviews the past two days, Prouty has not mentioned this fund, and so far only a handful of persons have located the website and contributed…

(h/t commentor Alison)

118 replies
  1. 1
    Spankyslappybottom says:

    Oh, and he saved a woman’s life that one time. Dude is a mensch.

  2. 2
    Walker says:

    Does he have legal expenses already? He was just outed.

  3. 3
    PeakVT says:

    And before all you humorists decide to go explain to Mr. Prouty what a terrible idea it would be to pursue his dream career

    If he can get out of law school without (much) debt and go on to be a public defender or work for a legal aid fund, then we should absolutely cheer him on. There’s no shortage of people who need legal counsel, just a shortage of those who can pay enough to cover the debts of recent law school graduates.

  4. 4
    gbear says:

    I bet his first priority is just getting enough money to pay for lawyers. He’s going to be a target for many years.

  5. 5
    Mike Furlan says:

    Don’t have to be a Prophet to predict that he is about to have his life ruined. The 1% is about to let loose a bunch of dirty tricks, IRS audits, private detective trolling, “Breitbart” lies and maybe even plain old physical violence. Would not be surprised if he is in jail by the end of the year.

  6. 6
    Mike Furlan says:

    @gbear: Agreed. He should have kept quiet. Could he have, or was he “outed?”

  7. 7
    eldorado says:

    there is where i regret not winning the lottery.

  8. 8
    lamh35 says:

    Barack Obama was also a Harvard-educated lawyer as well. Scott wants to emulate the best!

  9. 9
    Yutsano says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    IRS audits

    Sigh. Can this zombie canard die? No one can request that another person be audited.

  10. 10
    Baud says:


    That’s my regret every single day.

  11. 11
    Ed in NJ says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    Fuck that. If James O’Keefe can make a career by “exposing” good people doing good works, than Scott Prouty deserves to take credit and capitalize on exposing that douche Romney and helping to ensure he never became president.

  12. 12
    Bokonon says:


    Sigh. Can this zombie canard die? No one can request that another person be audited.

    No – but people within the Executive Branch with an axe to grind can certainly use IRS Audits to inflict pain and intimidate opponents. It has been done before. See: Nixon, Richard.

    In a future Republican administration? Very possibly. They have long memories.

    I have some personal experience in this department too.

  13. 13
    JWL says:

    My first (and likely final) impression is that this guy is trying to cash in while the cashing in is good.

  14. 14
    Joshua Norton says:

    I’d like to be a socially responsible lawyer

    Dude, in the legal world, “social responsibility” gets its ass kicked by “required billable hours” every time.

  15. 15
    Roger Moore says:


    No one can request that another person be audited.

    Technically, they can request all they want. I can send as many letters to the IRS requesting that they audit Mitt Romney as I like; y’all are just required to ignore them.

  16. 16
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Yutsano: I like the world that you live in better than mine.

  17. 17
    Alison says:

    @Walker: And he’s already being inundated with harassment and stalkers

  18. 18
    Yutsano says:

    @Roger Moore: And we will. While there are ways of reporting fraud and supposed malfeasance, it is a very very rare thing when those claims are found to be warranted. The IRS had a big change (Google RRA 98 IRS, a few of the links are okay but none of them said what I was looking for) that changed a lot how we do things now. One of the changes is the Executive Branch cannot initiate an audit for retaliatory purposes.

  19. 19
    cmorenc says:

    Prouty made a brilliant tactical decision to remain anonymous until *after* the election, to keep the focus of the “47% video” entirely on Romney, rather than creating any opportunity for GOP hacks to distract focus onto him as the one who made the video. One problem GOP operatives would have had attempting to investigate to uncover the identity of the maker of the video is that cameras (including those capable of shooting videos with audio) were freely allowed at the fundraiser (would you pay 50k to attend a function like that and stand for being told you couldn’t take souvenier pictures of the candidate?) However, I’ll bet there are more restrictive rules at GOP private fundraisers next time around, since whoever they nominate is likely to be the kind of person to say things that sound clearly asshole-ish to a majority of the electorate, but resonate well with the particular invited (paying) audience.

    Prouty will probably be ok even though his identity is “out”, though he may have to find another gig. There may be plenty of people who won’t hire him now for either of two reasons: a) they’re resentful GOP partisans; or b) even some nonpartisans will be reluctant to have someone who might not maintain discretion if he gets dissatisfied with something about their business. However, I doubt there will be any further vengeful impacts beyond his getting cut out of association with a portion of the population. He’s said the video was a one-shot thing with him, that he has no intention of being a crusader with a camera (sort of the way James O’Keefe has, except that Prouty has integrity to make a truthful video, instead of being a wilful slanderer and liar to make ideological points.

  20. 20
    Joshua Norton says:

    I want the real dirt on this guy’s background. What kind of counter tops does he have?

  21. 21
    the Conster says:

    My favorite part of his interview with Lawrence O’Donnell last night when he said that yes, he was there as a bartender, but also as a voter. He realized that it never occurred to Marquis Mitt that the staff there might actually hear what he was saying and care about it too, and vote accordingly – that they were all completely invisible to Mitt. How do you like them now, Marquis?

  22. 22
    bemused says:

    @the Conster:

    That was revealing too. The “help” was just wallpaper to him.
    Mitt is not a bright guy. It should have crossed his mind that the 47% was right in the room with him. Really dumb.

  23. 23
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Yutsano: The executive branch cannot initiate an audit. Probably not. Can some IRS agent with a bad attitude? Probably.

  24. 24
    Roger Moore says:


    would you pay 50k to attend a function like that and stand for being told you couldn’t take souvenier pictures of the candidate?

    That’s a manageable problem. If attendees are paying $50K, you can afford to have a professional photographer there to take souvenir portraits of them with the candidate. I realize that these are the kind of people who don’t like being told no, but the 47% video will give them a reason why it’s necessary.

  25. 25
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    To be fair, there is significant evidence that Romney was a prick long before he ever took the LSAT.

  26. 26
    The Dangerman says:

    He wants a career helping people? He’s a bartender!

  27. 27
    Rosie Outlook says:

    @Yutsano: Hi Yutsano, what about this scenario? You become aware of a tip against someone like Mr. Prouty. You want a lateral transfer to a department full of conservatives. You advise someone in the dept. of this tip. What might happen then , if anything?

  28. 28
    MikeJ says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    Can some IRS agent with a bad attitude?

    Do you know where Yutsy works?

  29. 29
    Mike Furlan says:

    @MikeJ: I do not spend any time wondering about anonymous cowards on the internet.

  30. 30
    Roger Moore says:


    The “help” was just wallpaper to him.

    It’s the same mentality that made “the butler did it” a brilliant ending to a murder mystery before it was a cliche. Some people really don’t see servants except when they’re directly interacting; they might as well be invisible. The idea that servants (waiters, bartenders, etc.) might be human beings with their own agendas and interests simply doesn’t cross their minds.

  31. 31
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike Furlan: Is the IRS, alone of all institutions, immune to the possibility that an individual employee will act improperly? Probably not.

  32. 32
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    When will these idiots realize that you do NOT fuck over “the help”? If you ever want to eat a meal out in peace ever again you DO NOT FUCK OVER THE HELP, cause the help can piss in your soup, or any other manner of things that you will not like. You depend on the help for your very lifestyle, you depend on them to feed you, to clothe you, to give you housing (albeit for a price) but you depend on them. Do not fuck over the help. The help have more power than you will ever know.

  33. 33
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: And I’m reading this in a comment section in which almost everybody is deathly afraid of using their actual name.

  34. 34
    raven says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: How’s the pup?

  35. 35
    raven says:

    @Mike Furlan: Get over yourself tarzan.

  36. 36
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike Furlan: I’m sure this relates to your point in some way, but perhaps you could explain.

  37. 37
    raven says:

    @Mike Furlan: Get over yourself tarzan.

  38. 38
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    Y’know, what amazes me in retrospect is that no one in the Rmoney camp managed to track Prouty down & out him during the campaign. Think back to the video: It’s clearly taken from a fair distance & far to the left of the podium. What was in that position? The bar where Prouty was pouring drinks–& quite probably nothing else. How hard would it have been to get a list from the caterer of who worked that bar & then do some digging on (at most half a dozen) resultant suspects?

    OTOH it may be that enough time passed before Prouty decided to release the vid for the trail to go cold, or at least make the tracking a lot tougher…I dunno.

  39. 39
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike Furlan: I’m sure this relates to your point in some way, but perhaps you could explain.

  40. 40
    raven says:

    @Uncle Cosmo: Couldn’t be they are a bunch of dumb motherfuckers?

  41. 41
    bemused says:

    @Roger Moore:

    If you are is having lunch with an accountant or lawyer, you stop talking about your private business when your waitperson comes to your table or anyone else within earshot. Same scenario in a business meeting with colleagues discussing company matters. Mitt and for that matter, his wealthy donor audience had no common sense whatsoever.

  42. 42
    scav says:

    Hmmm, Defiantly fact free poster making assertions about things he has no way of confirming and asserting things out of thin air. Poor Dear.

  43. 43
    Litlebritdifrnt says:


    She is charging around the house like a mad thing. We had a real fight with her for a while about her tearing off bandages and ripping off the Elizabethan Collar for a while but now she lets me put the collar on in the mornings like it was routine. I have to admit that I love this laproscoprapy (sorry spelling) way of spaying they do these days, the incision in the belly is about 1 inch, all of the major sutures are internal. She is jumping up on the piano trying to get to Harry Potter to wrestle as we speak.

  44. 44
    Mike Furlan says:

    My point is that some anonymous cowards on the internet are saying that the “Help” has power. That power is to do one “Kamikaze” run and then get ruined by the 1%. Proof of that is that vaste majority here that are afraid of using their own names, even for innocent chat. Prouty should have stayed anonymous, just like you guys.

  45. 45
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike Furlan: But then he would be an anonymous coward, wouldn’t he? Somehow that just don’t seem right.

    ETA: You might also want to look into the difference between anonymity and pseudonymity. No one here is anonymous.

  46. 46
    Rosie Outlook says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: I wish the help would wake up and realize all this. Maybe we should try to get schools to teach the history of Haiti in more detail.

  47. 47
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    The really weird thing about this Prouty guy is that years ago (and I mean years) I was a member of a forum called “The Reptilian Resistance” which was a smack in the face of David Icke types who thought that the Royal Family were hamster eating reptiles. We chatted about all sorts of conspiracy theories. The creator of the forum was Prouty, a nice guy from the North of England who I spoke with on the phone while I was visiting. The forum still exists, but appears to have been taken over by some asian dude.

  48. 48
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: You got a choice, anonymous coward, or martyr. Can you name a whistle blower who didn’t pay a significant price? Remember that thing called Wikileaks?

  49. 49
    Rand Careaga says:

    Late in last year’s campaign I said to my wife that the person responsible for the video deserved an ambassadorship (a few of these used to be passed out as political plums) in the second Obama term. She replied that he might even be able to land the coveted Libya post under a Romney presidency.

  50. 50
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    And I’m reading this in a comment section in which almost everybody is deathly afraid of using their actual name.

    And this is how I can tell you’re a white dude. It never seems to occur to white dudes why, for example, women might not want to post their personal information all over the internet for fear of becoming the targets of a massive harassment campaign.

  51. 51
    Roger Moore says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    And I’m reading this in a comment section in which almost everybody is deathly afraid of using their actual name.

    Not using their real name doesn’t mean they’re afraid of using it. Some people use a pseudonym online because their given name is too generic and they don’t want to be confused with all the other people with the same name. I’ve considered giving up using my real name- which can easily be confused with the many more famous people who have the same name- and going with another handle that’s less likely to be shared with somebody else.

  52. 52
    Alison says:

    @Mike Furlan: Why do you assume people who use pseudonyms are afraid to use real names, as opposed to just doing what the majority of people have done since the beginning of the Internet and used a made-up/funny name?

    Also, some people have serious reasons for needing to keep their identities at least somewhat secret, but why does that mean they can’t even congratulate someone else – someone who did way more than just comment on a blog – for deciding to open up? I mean…I honestly don’t get your complaint here. People can’t be proud of him for what he did because they didn’t do it themselves?

  53. 53
    gogol's wife says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Loved your work in Octop*ssy.

  54. 54
    gogol's wife says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Okay I’m in moderation so I’ll try again: Loved your work in The Spy Who Loved Me.

  55. 55
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @Mike Furlan:
    Bullshit. My real name and all of my contact information has been out there for years because I put it out there after some asshole tried to stalk me by buying something off me on e-bay. On the anti-birfer forum “The Fogbow” I posted my name, address and phone number and dared the birfers to contact me. They never did, wonder if it is because I work for a lawyer?

  56. 56
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Mnemosyne: So, all the people posting anonymously or as you might prefer pseudo anonymously are women?

  57. 57
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Roger Moore: OK, now everybody is either a woman, or has a generic name, what other excuse?

  58. 58
    Roger Moore says:


    If you are is having lunch with an accountant or lawyer, you stop talking about your private business when your waitperson comes to your table or anyone else within earshot.

    That was not my experience when I was working as a waiter. Part of the job is to blend into the background as much as possible. Once the people have ordered, you’re supposed to try to be so inconspicuous that the food seems to appear and dirty dishes disappear by magic. Much of the time, I was able to reach that level, and people were happy to discuss their business around me as though I didn’t exist.

  59. 59
    Alison says:

    @Mike Furlan: Guess you missed the words “for example” in Mnem’s comment.

  60. 60
    Alison says:

    @Mike Furlan: Why do they need an excuse?? The fuck is your problem? Why are you offended or annoyed or whatever it is you are that people – a fucking hell of a lot of people – comment on random blogs using silly names? What’s your fucking deal?

  61. 61
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    So, all the people posting anonymously or as you might prefer pseudo anonymously are women?

    The point. You have missed it, as you have missed so many in this thread. Good day, sir.

  62. 62
    Mike Furlan says:

    @Alison: When I was a boy, we had usenet, we used our own names, had great discussions with actual people and we liked it that way. That is the way I remember “the beginning of the internet.”

  63. 63
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    That’s funny, because I remember posting pseudonymously on pseudonymous message boards as far back as 1994. But I guess my internet wasn’t as cool as your internet.

  64. 64
    scav says:

    @Alison: Someone is saying things that interfer with his worldview. And/or he’s a lonely SOB under whatever his real name might be and this schtick works even less when attempted in meatspace. Usual usual.

    @Mnemosyne: Funny, my interwebs online experience is similar and goes back to the 80s. And SUCH a firm control there has always been of login names matching real names, no?

  65. 65
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mike Furlan: Aha, you are better than we are. Now I understand and I bow to your awesome bravery.

  66. 66
    scav says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: That walking uphill to his own internet in the snow both ways certainly settled our hash.

  67. 67
    raven says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Proly T&H just being annoying.

  68. 68
    Alison says:

    @Mike Furlan: Ooohhh, well, then. Pardon me, I’ll just be getting off your lawn now.

    Sheesh, dude. Find real things to give a fuck about.

  69. 69
    raven says:

    @Mike Furlan: “When” your were a boy huh?

  70. 70
    raven says:

    And from our pal Pat Lang

    On the other hand we have the gay lobby. These folks have been so succesfull at recruiting support from media gay people, media corporations and the congress that it has become axiomatic to say that any opposition to their program of normalization will be attacked with the fury and deceptive self assurance that is usually associated with AIPAC.

    Francis does not believe that gay marriage is justifiable for his church, therefore Francis must be attacked in the most horrendous terms. Francis must be said to be a fascist and supporter of fascists. How contemptible.

  71. 71
    gbear says:

    @Mike Furlan: gbear is my real name. Why are you being such a dick?

  72. 72
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    This guys saves a life, then saves democracy and he wants to throw it all away by becoming a lawyer? I don’t get it.

  73. 73
    Svensker says:


    That walking uphill to his own internet in the snow both ways certainly settled our hash.

    Surely you’d have to walk up the hill in the snow to the internets one way and then down the hill in the snow the other way.

    Also, too, you win the internets (with or without snow).

  74. 74
    Roger Moore says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    When I was a boy, we had usenet, we used our own names, had great discussions with actual people and we liked it that way.

    This must have been some different USENET from the one I posted on. The one I posted on had many people who posted under their real names, but it also had plenty of people who posted under pseudonyms. It even had special anonymizing proxies (e.g. to make it easy for people who wanted true anonymity. And the use of pseudonyms was strongly correlated with how controversial the topic under discussion was, so that political groups had a lot more pseudonymous posters than one that talked about baseball.

  75. 75
    Baud says:


    their program of normalization

    Is that what the kids are calling the gay agenda these days?

  76. 76
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead: He is trying to even things out.

  77. 77
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Mike Furlan: Yeah, whatever. The 25th anniversary of my first Usenet post has already passed, too. If you’ll recall, there were a lot fewer people around then, making things a lot different.

    Doesn’t matter, as this is my real name anyway. Getting the DMV to put the ampersand on my driver’s license was a chore, but I persevered.

  78. 78
    Mnemosyne says:


    Clearly he’s got a bigger onion on his belt than Raven and I ever dreamed of having…

    That’s what she said.

  79. 79
    raven says:

    @Baud: That’s what the racist, confederate, mackerel snapping green beret that you can just click on right here a BJ calls it.

  80. 80
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I’m using a pseudonym, in case there was any confusion.

  81. 81
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @efgoldman: I’m not that old.

  82. 82
    Baud says:


    Give the guy a break. After all, he posts under his real name.

  83. 83
    Mister Harvest says:

    @Mike Furlan: And I was posting on Usenet before the Great Renaming. I have hand-configured uucp to deliver netnews. Since you have just awoken from cryogenic slumbers from 1984: A black dude is President, and the Internet is a very, very different place now. What’s your point?

  84. 84
    raven says:

    @Mister Harvest: It’s on the top of his head.

  85. 85
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Mister Harvest: The IRS is coming to get you if you do anything, but, if that isn’t true, then you are a coward for using a pseudonym on the ‘net because Usenet.

    Did I miss anything?

  86. 86
    Roger Moore says:


    And SUCH a firm control there has always been of login names matching real names, no?

    Absolutely. And RFC 1036 was noteworthy for its rigorous security protocols intended to prevent anyone from forging headers.

  87. 87
    Baud says:

    The Federalist Papers were published under a pseudonym.


  88. 88
    raven says:

    Duke is getting it’s butt whipped.

  89. 89
    Baud says:


    I assume everyone on the Internet is DougJ.

  90. 90
    Omnes Omnibus says:


    I assume everyone on the Internet is DougJ.

    Including Baud?

  91. 91
    Roger Moore says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Including Baud?

    In that case, he knows it’s a safe assumption.

  92. 92
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @scav: Win!

  93. 93
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @raven: You say the sweetest things on here.

  94. 94
    Baud says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Especially Baud!

  95. 95
    raven says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: Back to 5, 40.1 to go.

  96. 96
    Yutsano says:

    @Baud: We are all DougJ now.

    @Roger Moore: Heh. I never make assumptions when it comes to nyms. You can be anyone you want on the Interwebs. Ask Manti Te’o.

    (too soon?)

  97. 97
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead:

    Shit, you had me fooled. ;p

  98. 98
    Poopyman says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    When I was a boy, we had usenet, we used our own names,

    When I was a boy, we watched Howdy Doody, and if you think “Buffalo Bob” was his real name your head’s up your ass.

  99. 99
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    …he is about to have his life ruined

    Betting he has potential to do just fine, though time will tell. This was not wikileaks. (e.g. the state security apparatus does not forgive quickly or easily. Remember the Liberty?)

  100. 100
    Culture of Truth says:

    It never seems to occur to white dudes why, for example, women might not want to post their personal information all over the internet

    maybe one or two of these terrible ‘white dudes’.

  101. 101
    Maude says:

    He’s a troll.

  102. 102
    Jackie says:

    @Mike Furlan: If any of you watched the movie The Help, this is when he says “eat my shit.” “No, really, eat my shit.” Mitt just ate shit and is gagging and vomiting… :)

  103. 103
    Porlock Junior says:


    Gee, I always thought it was the fear of all that Britishness.

    Of course it was. They are bloody dangerous people. You know who else found them dangerous?

  104. 104
    FlyingToaster says:

    @Mike Furlan: Some of us certainly are women.

    I was on Usenet in the late 80’s; trust me, I’ve NEVER used my name in any identifiable way. Being a female in a “traditionally male” field provided enough drama at work; I did not need it to carry over online.

    Also, people have hostages to fortune; I have a husband and daughter who do not need to deal with fallout from my BBS/Usenet/Listserv/Blog antics.

    Lastly, as people have pointed out, anonymous != pseudonymous. I’ve the same handle all over the liberal blogosphere. I am consistently bitchy here or at the GOS or in my local political blogs. I’m just not going to make my meatspace a living hell.

  105. 105
    Mike Furlan says:

    I guess what is bothering me is the contrast between the situation of Mr. Prouty who had a legitimate, and I believe continuing need for anonymity. And the hysterical protests here that we need to be anonymous because everybody is a. named “John Smith” and so needs a new secret name or b. a woman who will be subject to anonymous stalking. (The existence of anonymous stalking would seem to me to be a sufficient argument against internet anonymity.)

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    FlyingToaster says:

    @Mike Furlan: It’s not hysteria.

    One of my gigs was at a financial institution who wanted their contractors to submit to the same bullshit as their employees, without providing any of the same benefits. Namely, they wanted me to refrain from working on political campaigns without “permission” and they might want me to pee in a cup.

    The problem for them was that I was a VENDOR (as my attorney informed them), so it was none of their effing business what I did outside of their contract. But I finished that contract and told the project manager not to bother calling me again.

    I have whistleblown on one contract (didn’t involve criminal charges, but their funders shut their asses down), though under a different pseudonym, so I’m pretty clear that people can have a myriad of good reasons not to use real names online. You might not agree with all of their reasons, but then again, who died and made you Blake?

  107. 107
    PeakVT says:

    @Mike Furlan: Your concerns have been duly noted.

  108. 108
    Mike Furlan says:

    @FlyingToaster: As I understand it pseudo anonymity is a subset of anonymity. And as you explain it, there is no difference. You use an assumed name because you are afraid. And again, I wonder what has anyone here ever said here that would elicit the kind of aggravation that Mr. Prouty is about to go through?

  109. 109
    scav says:

    poor dear is now going for the last word on the post wins the arguement style. This one’s practically a classic of the genre, albeit a dull one. We run in terror to more visible and scrutinized threads.

  110. 110
    Mike Furlan says:

    @FlyingToaster: I understand why Mr. Prouty would have wanted to remain anonymous. I understand why you would want to have been anonymous when you had to blow the whistle on someone.

    But really, I haven’t seen anything in the comments section here that is going to make get the attention of the Koch brothers.

    If women are getting harassed, that is a crime and it must stop. And the only way to really stop it is to break anonymity.

  111. 111
    Splitting Image says:

    It’s not an open thread, but I thought I would mention that I have been enjoying the classic novel Jane Eyre, by Currer Bell.

  112. 112
    Groucho48 says:

    What I find amusing is that the reason he took a camera in the first place is that when he was bartending for a Bill Clinton event, Clinton hung around chatting with the staff and letting them get pictures with him, whereas the first thing Romney did when he took the mike is to chastise the staff for not clearing the tables fast enough.

    Gotta love karma.

    Also, too, I find the story Romney told about the tour of the factory he had bought in China. The women wouldn’t even look up from their work to see who was walking by. The manager explained that they were just that dedicated. They also slept in triple bunks, 12 to a room. There were barbed wire fences surrounding the place. When Romney asked why, he was told it was to keep people who wanted those plush jobs out, not to keep the workers in. His entire audience of $50000 a plate donors burst into “what a Wonderful World”. Okay, I made that part up.

    Why are all you folks letting a troll take attention from what this thread is about…one of the good guys might need us to cover his back?

  113. 113
    Joel says:

    @Mike Furlan: god, you are a fucking moron.

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    Mnemosyne (iPhone) says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    And yet Prouty outed himself. Nobody forced him to do it, and all of the journalists involved were willing to keep his secret for as long as he wanted them to.

    So, basically, you’re making the same moral argument as “pro-life” women who decided to carry anencephalic babies to term are making — since they made a choice to carry that doomed baby to term, every woman in the same situation should be legally forced to do it.

    So if one formerly anonymous whistleblower decides to drop his anonymity, everyone who is anonymous or pseudonymous should be forced to break their anonymity because shut up, that’s why.

  115. 115
    Darkrose says:

    @Mike Furlan:

    When I was a boy, we had usenet, we used our own names, had great discussions with actual people and we liked it that way. That is the way I remember “the beginning of the internet.”

    Calling bullshit on the play. I started posting on Usenet in 1992, posting as with any number of people who were also using names other than the one on their driver’s license. Some people are comfortable with using their real names. Some aren’t. It’s not a measure of courage and it never has been.

  116. 116

    BTW, Scott Prouty’s Wikipedia page is being considered for deletion. The move is to make it subordinate to Mitt Romney’s campaign page. People of good will might want to wander by and defend it.

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    @Alison: He was being harassed as the interview ran, which is fairly stunning–there are people out there just looking for an opportunity to harass someone, in real time.

  118. 118
    Fred says:

    The instant I heard that the maker of the 47% video was coming out of the dark I yelled ‘Don’t do it!’ or as they say in the moobies “NOOOOOOOOO!!!”
    Not that I haven’t enjoyed listening to his interviews and am impressed with his smarts and integrity. But still…
    As to ‘cowards* in hiding, I think it’s great to have thousands of anonymous eyes and ears out there. Keep the A-Holes watching their soup bowls with suspicion. Anything that throws a stick in the wheels of doushbags like Mitt is just fine with me.

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