January 25, 2010

Ellie Light - From Obama Turfer To Messing With The Right

Over the course of the last few days, someone named Ellie Light has been brought to, um, light, as an astroturfer from some inside political Obama machine, out to pump up the President's sagging approval ratings. If it's an inside job, it's intriguing and potentially politically damaging.

Everyone from Hot Air, to Little Miss Attila are busy commenting on it. No doubt it makes for scintillating reading and doesn't hurt page hits. Everyone wants to track down who this mysterious Ellie Light might be. IP addresses apparently are coming in as far away as Thailand.

Here's my problem with this issue: whatever or whomever was behind Ellie Light, is long ago not the sole Ellie Light on the Internet. There are doubtless 1500 imposters by this time looking to grab a piece of the 15 minutes to feel good or to promote their new XBox hack site. Following the rabbit hole is pointless. There are bound to be an entire rabbit warren of false leads. Every time something interesting happens, people have to go and Watership Down. Nobody is going to pull a rabbit out of their hat and find this Ellie Light. She or he doesn't exist. Finding the real Ellie Light will be impossible. If I were a lefty operative right now, I would post replies everywhere under the name Ellie Light to drive my opponents crazy and keep them tangled up in a story of little real relevance.

And that makes it worse. It's a diversion from the real issues with the Obama administration. I'd love to find out who Ellie Light is as much as the next guy or girl. But this real-life unsolvable puzzle, like TV's Lost, is at best an entertaining diversion. At worst, it's a diversion of serious analysis away from the President and his own continually mysterious calculus on what is good for the American economy and the American people. To me the real mystery is why his decisions are nearly uniformly wrong.

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