verrit-screengrab

Two days ago I posted about a new website dedicated to “setting the record straight” about what happened in the 2016 election. For most people who are not consumed by TDS, what happened in 2016 is pretty obvious. You had a tired, corrupt, thoroughly unlikable and utterly incompetent candidate bucking widespread dissatisfaction over the past eight years.

But if you are Peter Daou, the faux tough guy of the left and possessor of an erotic fixation on Hillary Clinton that probably results in that amazing Cialis four-hour erection every time he hears her name, the story is different. He thinks she lost because she and her voting base were ignored by the media. To remedy this, he has created a “media platform” called Verrit which acts sort of like a rapid response team at an autopsy. It is so bad that even the left is laughing. Jack Shafer, who might be the only person at Politico worth reading, tells the story: This Pro-Hillary Website Looks Like North Korean Agitprop.

It gets worse.

The derision greeting Verrit is so universal as to inspire sympathy for Daou, as Gizmodo, the Washington PostOutlineNew RepublicNew YorkThe Ringerand others have broken its back with their snap judgments. “Verrit, a Media Company for Almost Nobody,” read one headline. “No One Asked for Verrit, But Here We Are,” stated another. “What Is Verrit and Why Should I Care? (Unclear; You Shouldn’t.),” said a third. “Peter Daou Continues to Embarrass Hillary Clinton,” asserted the best in show.

Granted, Verrit is a goofy website as websites go. If you don’t possess the courage to visit it right now, here’s a description: Imagine if Matt Drudge created a Hillary fan site, only instead of listing news stories in a text-heavy fashion, he arranged them on the web equivalent of 3×5 cards, and in addition to typing headlines onto the cards, he pulled out salient factsand stats from the stories (called “verrits”). Each card carries a unique serial number that you can plug into the Verrit database to prove … well, I don’t know exactly what it proves other than Verrit drew its facts and stats from the news source cited.

As Daou’s Verrit manifesto puts it, the site hopes to become the trusted sourced for the 65.8 million voters who cast their ballots last November for Clinton and who seek verified “facts” they can use to argue politics. In theory, everybody needs a cheat sheet. In practice, the Verrit method is cringeworthy. The headline to one early Verrit borrows from the literary methods of Kim Jong Un’s North Korea to assert, “Hillary Democrats Are the Heart and Conscience of America.” Does anybody outside of the Daou reeducation camp really think this way?

When it comes to criticism, Daou isn’t a just snowflake. He’s a snow squall, equating most criticism of Clinton (or criticism of Daou) with the desire to erase Clinton and Clintonites. Early this year, he telegraphed his irrational partisanship by tweeting that anybody tweeting “Bernie would have won” in his timeline would earn “an instant block” from his account. “Useless and baseless conjecture. Betrays someone unfocused on the challenge ahead,” Daou continued.

His is a reductionist world where evidence of misogyny and sexism can be deduced from almost any political discussion of Madame Secretary. When Verrit launched, it inspired not only a mudslide of negative reviews but an ugly denial-of-service attack on his servers. From this rocky reception, Daou didn’t extract the perennial lesson that politics ain’t beanbag. He didn’t cinch up and concede that political passions will cause folks to overheat. Instead, he flew to Twitter and raged in all caps, “PEOPLE ARE STILL TERRIFIED OF HILLARY. PEOPLE STILL WANT TO DESTROY HILLARY. PEOPLE WANT TO SILENCE ANYONE WHO SUPPORTS HER.”

Terrified? Destroy? Silence? I’d love to see the serial numbers on those “facts.”

When something is so over the top that even rabid Clinton supporters laugh at it, you know it is ridiculous.