ANNOUNCER: (VOICE OVER MUSIC) Around Twitter Town and in the territory of the net—there’s just one way to handle the harassers and the stalkers—and that’s with an Internet Sheriff and the smell of “BLOGSMOKE”!


ANNOUNCER: “BLOGSMOKE” starring W. J. J. Hoge. The story of the trolling that moved into the young Internet—and the story of a man who moved against it. (MUSIC: OUT)

JOHN: I’m that man, John Hoge, Internet Sheriff—the first man they look for and the last they want to meet. It’s a chancy job—and it makes a man watchful … and a little lonely.


SOUND: Street noise background. Footstep on sidewalk. Door opens. Crossfade from street noise to nightclub background.

JOHN: Hello, Miss Betty. What are you doing behind the bar?

MISS BETTY: Hi, John. The help has the night off. What’s up with you this evening?

JOHN: It’s been quiet … mostly.

MISS BETTY: The usual?

JOHN: Yeah.

MISS BETTY: Sure. Here you go.

JOHN: (Sips) Ah. Thanks. Yeah, it’s been kinda quiet since The Bomber and his buddies started coming out on the short end of the stick in court. Although it’s beginning to look like they’re starting to figure out new ways to harass …

SOUND: iPhone email ping.

JOHN: … I’d better check that. (Pause) Rats. Just when I thought I’d get a night off …

MISS BETTY: Now what?

JOHN: One of the members of the Vast Hogewash Research Organization is getting harassed.

MISS BETTY: What’s unusual about that?

JOHN: Nothing, but in this guy’s case it could be dangerous. He’s an ex-con and someone is filing bogus complaints with his probation officer.


JOHN: Yeah. If it gets to be enough of a problem for the probation officer, the easiest bureaucratic solution would be to revoke his probation and let him finish his time in prison.

MISS BETTY: Not good.

JOHN: Uh, huh. I’d better head back to the office.

SOUND: Nightclub background out.

ANNOUNCER: Here in Westminster, we’re having one of those pleasant summer evenings when it’s nice to sit on the porch and sip a cold drink while listening to crickets and watching the lightning bugs. I’ve been sipping mine from one of the Hogewash! Res Judicata travel mugs. It’s just one of the goodies exclusively available for you to spend your hard-earned cash on at The Hogewash Store. Stop by today, and spend some cash to support Team Lickspittle.

And now back to our story.


JOHN: Pat Citrus is a con man, and he got caught by the feds. He wound up doing time and is currently out on supervised release. How he got to be a member of the Vast Hogewash Research Organization is a convoluted story. He was a member for a while, but when he came under pressure from The Bomber’s friends, he wound up working with them for several months. Then he rejoined the VHRO, and when he came back, he brought a great deal of emails and other documents. Many of them relate to the internal workings of The Bomber’s Goodguys Unmasked website.

Pat’s email stated that the current editor of that site and one of the previous editors have been calling his probation officer and complaining about the posts he makes to his own blog and comments he leaves at other blogs. They say that they are “offended.” Of course, Pat’s a con man, so the first step in dealing with his report was to verify it.

SOUND: (Telephone ringing. Caller’s POV. Answered on fourth ring.)

DONALDSON: (Telephone Filter) Special Agent Donaldson.

JOHN: Hello, Ray. It’s John Hoge from Twitter Town.

DONALDSON: (Telephone Filter) Howdy, Sheriff. Long time, no see. Are you down here in Florida?

JOHN: No, I’m back home. I need a favor. Can you check on a Parole Commission case for me?

DONALDSON: (Telephone Filter) (Fading out) Probably. Shoot me an email with the particulars so I can …

JOHN: Pat Citrus’s story checked out.

My inquiry also set some wheels in motion. You see, it’s a federal crime to lie to a federal agent. That’s what Martha Stewart and Scooter Libby and a whole host of other folks were sent to jail for. Normally, the charge is used to punish white collar criminals who have impeded an investigation. Occasionally, it’s used when someone keeps filing bogus complaints. So now there’s an 18 USC § 1001 investigation open.

We’ll see how it turns out.


ANNOUNCER: (VOICE OVER MUSIC) It’s a sin to tell a lie, but is it a crime? We will see in a future episode of “BLOGSMOKE”!


ANNOUNCER: The Legal Department wishes the following declaimer read: “‘BLOGSMOKE’ is a work of fiction. Anyone who feels it might be about him should read Proverbs 28:1.”

Be sure to tune in on Monday at 6 pm Eastern Time for the next intriguing episode of “Yours Truly, Johnny Atsign.” This is LBS, the Lickspittle Broadcasting System.

39 thoughts on “Blogsmoke

  1. Team Kimberlin has taught me a lot about false reports to law enforcement. Perversions of justice like that make me really mad. Naturally, the false filings and statements to courts fall in a similar category.

    • You can fly to Hawaii on coupons?
      Sure, felons know all the tricks of how to get good savings on their ventures…

      • When I worked as a recording engineer back in the ’60s and ’70s, I probably made more money doing what we called “Tex Nobody” sessions than working on real commercial projects. (There are hundreds of sessions each week just in Nashville and only a handful of new hits.) Folks would come to town, and “producers” who specialized in such “artists” would arrange for a set of sessions to cut an album, often with name brand backup musicians. We’d mix the session multi-track masters down to stereo and send the two-track masters over to one of the independent disk mastering outfits. Lacquer master records would be cut and sent to a pressing plant that would do a run of 1,000 to 2,000 LPs. A local photographer would shoot some pictures and a graphic artist would design an album cover. The “artist” would then have records to sell in the lobby of concerts or during breaks while playing the Holiday Inn circuit.

        Some of those acts were pretty good, but most were folks who believed that they were great performer but who couldn’t recognize that they were singing off pitch even when listening to their own records.

      • It’s like vanity publishing in the book industry (which is different than indie publishing) – you pay someone to do all the lifting for you, and you never make a dime off it.

    • I managed 5 Hawaii vacations in 25 months on 30k a year, but I didn’t have a mortgage or rent to pay, and I had strong credit. That was before I spent about 39 months without unemployment and only working 9 weeks.

      So, if you don’t have a mortgage and you don’t pay rent, but you pay utilities, food, car insurance, you can afford to go with credit cards, and you can take another person with you. 4 people for 2 weeks? That’s a bit more difficult.

      • I took my daughter twice and went alone 3 times. But 30k a year was enough for me to have 8 credit cards worth 40k, an unsecured loan worth 4k, a car loan worth 20k, and an open line of credit worth 5k. Before the credit crash.

        I owned my own home (inherited from my great grandmother through my mother) mortgage-free at the time, so there’s that.

  2. DIdn’t Pat warn the Bomber’s friends about exactly this sort of problem? They really don’t listen or learn, do they.

    • Right-wing bloggers involved in the bizarre war with leftist activist Brett Kimberlin that David Weigel recently chronicled in The Daily Beast have faced scary cyber-harassment from some of Kimberlin’s supporters, including graphic fantasies of violent revenge, lurid sexual slurs, and accusations of child pornography. (Particularly disturbing examples are documented in a blogpost by First Amendment advocate Ken White.)

      Who do we know that deliberately falsely accused people of producing child porn, wrote a violent revenge fantasy, and uses horrid sexual slurs against both men and woman. Someone is worried about his sterling reputation. But when a persons actions get to the point that even a left leaning blog describes their behavior like the DB did, “sterling” is not the word that describes them any longer.

  3. I know it has been discussed that the IRS would probably look at his non profit as a small fish, and combined with the IRS targeting organizations only the right would give him a pass.

    Not overly familiar with U.S. laws, but what would happen if one of the donors happened to complain about personal use of the non profit’s funds? Doesn’t that then bring fraud, embezzlement, etc etc into play? Would even a single donor complaining force the books to be opened?

    • It seems that everyone thinks that its the IRS that has jurisdiction over non-profits.

      That’s not correct. The IRS has jurisdiction over tax exempts e.g., 501c3,501c4 etc.

      Each state has jurisdiction over the non profit corporations and their adherence to the state laws regarding non-profit corporations. Often the state’s Attorney General.

      • Given that these seem to be in MD, that makes it even more unlikely that any investigations will be undertaken. Ever.

  4. “it’s nice to sit on the porch and sip a cold drink while listening to crickets and watching the lightning bugs.”

    Just this week I was remembering some of the more pleasant aspects of my childhood, and doing this was one of them. The purr of the crickets, and the little lightning bugs blinking on and off. That was in Missouri. Here in California, we have the crickets, but no lightning bugs. I miss them.

    • You have to go up into Gold Country Mr. Stogie. High above…um…whatever all that crap is that flatlanders live amongst, you can find not glow bugs, but rather glow worms. Lil’ short stubby bastards with glowing asses. They don’t turn on or off..or fly…or do much of anything except sit there with their glowing asses stuck in the air.

      But you can walk right up to them for a closer look. I mean if you’re into glowing worm ass.

      The point is, childhood is overrated.

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