This was filling up with lots of obnoxious comment spam from, well, an obsessed person with access to personal information (not about me, but about others), which he was spilling all over the site. So, unfortunately, I'm disabling comments"Obnoxious," "spam," "obsession," spilling "personal" details all over the internet? The way Palmer tells it, it sounds as if this "person" was being downright abusive of his little blog.
Well, not really. Let us dissect.
1. "Obnoxious" - this is Palmer's term for a dialogue over the issue of the Cato Institute's relationship to Ron Paul. In response to Palmer's act of tooting Cato's own horn about the financial sector bailout fiasco, it was pointed out that Cato has generally shunned Rep. Paul despite Paul being the only voice of sanity in Congress on this issue. A frequent Palmer Peon responded in Cato's defense by asserting that Cato support for Paul would be "illegal" electioneering by a non-profit. In retort it was pointed out that (a) think tanks can and do legally lend intellectual support to idealogically aligned politicians much as the American Enterprise Institute does with the current Bush administration, and (b) think tank "scholars" can legally support politicians in their capacity as private individuals.
2. "Spam" - Palmer applied this term to several successive pieces of dialogue concerning the aforementioned means in which the Cato Institute could support Paul if it so chose. Noticeably absent from this dialogue was anything even remotely resembling the definition of internet spam, defined as a "commercial message posted on a computer network or sent as e-mail."
3. "Obsession" - this is Palmer's hypocritical term of choice for pretty much anybody who comments on the ill effects of something which he exhibits routinely on his own, viz. an obsession-driven feud with Lew Rockwell and the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
4. "Personal information" - Palmer's terminology in this case would have one believe that his blog comments section was utilized to spread something about the Cato Institute that was both private and difficult to come by through normal means. Far from it, the "personal information" in question consisted of nothing more than public campaign contribution disclosures from the Federal Elections Commission obtained through a quick public database search. This information is both widely published and publicly available as a matter of law. What displeased Palmer about this information is that it revealed many senior "scholars" at the self-described "libertarian" Cato Institute.
So what was all this embarassing public information to merit its censorship and removal under the four dishonest descriptors named above? Palmer did not want his readers to know that his "senior analyst" friends at the Cato Institute have donated hundreds or even thousands of dollars to anti-libertarian politicians including George W. Bush, William Weld, Rudy Giuliani, Evan Bayh, and Mike Huckabee, though not one of them has dropped a penny for Ron Paul.