An ordinary citizen speaks up about how federal policies affect his family and his pocketbook, and bloggers dive into his personal life. His finances, his address, his background and family connections are all splashed all over the internet as bloggers line up to debate whether the instant celebrity is all he appears to be. Many feel he’s concealing enough about his background to make his opinion worthless.Next the media steps in to defend the ordinary guy. Time Magazine’s Karen Tumulty says he’s being ‘swift-boated.’ The New York Times says he’s being ‘slimed.’ One partisan blogger says the other side ought to stop ‘snooping around.’ Another accuses adversaries of launching ‘a baseless smear campaign.’ Commenters at Democratic Underground label those at Free Republic ‘scum’ for investigating his personal life.

That’s right: Democratic Underground, Paul Krugman, Daily Kos, Crooks and Liars, Think Progress, Time Magazine, and lots of others on the Left were defenders of privacy when Graeme Frost delivered the weekly Democratic radio address regarding SCHIP. To the Left, it didn’t matter that Frost had specifically chosen to make himself a spokesman of the Democratic party; his personal life was still sacrosanct. Those who investigated his background were beneath contempt.

‘Joe the Plumber,’ on the other hand, never endorsed a candidate, never identified himself as a spokesman for Senator McCain, and never even asked to become a celebrity. All he did was ask a question and state a position when Barack Obama knocked on his door. And that was enough for the defenders of privacy on the Left to tear apart his background and destroy his livelihood.

The liberal message is clear: privacy is wonderful until it conflicts with our agenda. Your privacy rights end where our efforts to destroy conservatives begin.