I’ve been reading about crazy person Pam Geller of Atlas Shrugs for several years, courtesy of the gang at Sadly, No! and Roy Edroso of Alicublog, among others. But Mad Pam had always been on the fringes of the right-wing nutosphere, until the “Ground Zero Mosque” bullshit propelled her into the limelight, landing her, inexplicably, on CNN and other corporate-owned media outlets.
Now, Pammy has gotten big enough for the New York Times to do a profile of her. While the writers don’t achieve the snarkiness that the aforementioned bloggers regularly lavish on their subject, they make a pretty damning case against Ms. Geller:
It is in this genteel setting that Ms. Geller, 52 and a single mother of four, wakes each morning shortly after 7, switches on her laptop and wages a form of holy war through Atlas Shrugs, a Web site that attacks Islam with a rhetoric venomous enough that PayPal at one pointbranded it a hate site. Working here — often in fuzzy slippers — she has called for the removal of the Dome of the Rock from atop the Temple Mount in Jerusalem; posted doctored pictures of Elena Kagan, the Supreme Court justice, in a Nazi helmet; suggested the State Department was run by “Islamic supremacists”; and referred to health care reform as an act of national rape…
Operating largely outside traditional Washington power centers — and, for better or worse, without traditional academic, public-policy or journalism credentials — Ms. Geller, with a coterie of allies, has helped set the tone and shape the narrative for a divisive national debate over Park51 (she calls the developer a “thug” and a “lowlife”). In the process, she has helped bring into the mainstream a concept that after 9/11 percolated mainly on the fringes of American politics: that terrorism by Muslims springs not from perversions of Islam but from the religion itself. Her writings, rallies and television appearances have both offended and inspired, transforming Ms. Geller from an Internet obscurity, who once videotaped herself in a bikini as she denounced “Islamofascism,” into a media commodity who has been profiled on “60 Minutes” and whose phraseology has been adopted by Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin…
The outrageous and the solemn are deeply intertwined in her character. Ms. Geller admits to using Atlas Shrugs to test topics significant (the conflict in Sudan) and outlandish (that a young Barack Obama slept with “a crack whore”). She has taken up arms against “honor killings” as well as against a Disneyland employee who fought to wear a head scarf. She inspires laughs at sites like Loonwatch, but critics say her influence is serious: a spreading fear of Islam and a dehumanization of Muslims comparable to the sometimes-violent anti-Semitism and anti-Catholicism of earlier eras. Even some of her former right-wing allies say she has gone too far.
In short, the chick is twisted, crazy, moogie-shoogie, you hear, flip city!
The article details her alliance with other Islamophobes, like Robert Spencer of Jihadwatch.org and Daniel Pipes, and her championing of neo-Nazi organizations like Vlaams Belang and the English Defense League. Then there is Charles Johnson, the founder of Little Green Footballs, where Pam got her bile-filled start as a commenter, before falling out with him because he wasn’t Islamophobic enough for her tastes:
Ms. Geller commented prolifically on Web sites focused on Islamic militancy, like Little Green Footballs. “She was always one of the first ones to start going way out there,” said Mr. Johnson. (Ms. Geller, in turn, dismissed him as “a reviled figure” who had abandoned his principles.) A fellow commenter called Pookleblinky urged Ms. Geller to start her own blog. She named it in homage to Ayn Rand’s championing of individual rights — Ms. Geller, unlike some of her allies, favors abortion rights — and, perhaps, to conjure the weight of the world on her shoulders.
Inspired by Pookleblinky – somehow it all makes sense now.
So, now that Pammy’s been on 60 Minutes and has had the full measure of her lunacy documented in the Times, expect her to start a regular gig at Fox News (if not CNN) any day now. And I can say that I knew her when she was just an insignificant little nothing being skewered by people much smarter and better than her. Those people, of course, will never be on CNN.
UPDATE: The Times profile manages to overlook Pammy’s most batshit insane piece of excrement, the “Obama was the love child of Malcolm X” post, which Pammy now naturally denies ownership of (in spite of the fact that she originally published it uncritically, as part of a ridiculously-long screed which calls Obama’s citizenship into question) with the “it raises interesting questions” dodge.