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Origin Story — How To Get Banned By Scott Johnson of PowerLine — As He Turns PowerLine into Twitter, YouTube, Facebook

PowerLine reader comment on Johnson’s post

Chief Hypocrite Scott Johnson pontificated for more than 800 words in his Note to Commenters” about his “rules” for posting.  By all means, click on the link and read his post for yourself.  This was foreshadowing.  Like Barack Obama, Johnson used first person (I, my, me) thirty-two times

In his very first sentence, Johnson bragged he had parlayed the PowerLine website into a type of “fame” which helps him secure radio, TV appearances and placements in other publications and websites.  [NB:  He quickly rewrote that after I suggested how pompous and self-absorbed it was.]

This  adolescent, whiny post leads one to picture Johnson writing in front of a mirror, primping between paragraphs.  Based on business experience, I posted a “grown up” comment (see below).  In response, Johnson rewrote his first sentence, deleted my comment in its entirety and banned me from further comments.  Not a word of explanation.

PowerLine reader comment on Johnson’s post addressing the “delusion” that conservative Twitter would be different.


Evaluate my “deleted/banned” comment for yourself.  It begins with positives, followed by improvement opportunities.

My Banned/Deleted Comment To PowerLine

This is distasteful.  Your “Note To Commenters reminds me when I worked for a CEO who would periodically tell one of his managers to “grow up.”  This is a “grown up” message to Scott Johnson.  Let’s begin with the positives: 

  • We appreciate your moderation for vulgarities and trolls.  Well done, Mr. Johnson. 
  • One of the features of PowerLine that my wife and I appreciate is the intellect of many of its readers in the comment section.  It represents real value beyond “the work of its four contributors.” 
  • We love and look forward to Steven Hayward’s “The Week in Pictures.”  I would not be surprised to learn it is the most read feature.    

Improvement opportunities include the following: 

  • Good for Mr. Johnson for restating policy on vulgarities and “the reasonable expression of opinion.”  But, Holy Columbus, don’t whine about it.  If you don’t like your job, quit.  This post goes from reasonable statement of policy to an adolescent crying jag.  If you want to ban somebody, ban them.  I put up 3 websites over the years (including on property rights and the 2nd amendment).  Myself and many of your readers have “blocked” commenters on FB.  Mine was a relative and we live on different planets politically, but I stopped at his first F-Bomb.  Guess what?  I immediately felt better.  No one adds value with vulgarities.   
  • Personal abuse of the proprietors of this site is not okay.”  What protective cloak must be dropped over Paul Mirengoff — usually by Mr. Johnson?  Is he not a grown up, capable of “defending” himself, if he believes he needs it?  And readers nailed the hypocrisy that while the “four contributors” can label any person they choose as a “Never Trumper,” don’t let those mean readers say it about Paul.  Two paragraphs of “don’t come into our living room?”  Tiresome.  Whiny.  Guess what?  PowerLine comes into our living quarters too.  And you should thank the deities you believe in that readers come to PowerLine. 
  • Don’t let this shock you, but PowerLine could disappear tomorrow morning and the world would be fine.  And all of us readers and commenters would be fine.    

As you acknowledge in your first sentence, readers haven’t missed the fact that you’ve parlayed this website into a type of “fame” which helps you secure radio, TV appearances and placements in other publications and websites.  

Perhaps then you should consider a “thank you” post to readers.  If they weren’t here, you likely would not be here.  Since you’re talking about readers’ behavior, I did not receive a thank you for catching your embarrassing typo referring to the website as the PowerLine BLOB.  This was in one of your Ilhan Omar posts.  My comment disappeared quickly but you corrected your error.  You’re welcome.  

All the best on behalf of continuous improvement and an open exchange of views.