Since the newsletter story broke there's been a very unusual friendliness between Jamie Kirchick and the guys over at Reason. Here's what we know for sure:
1. Reason's blog knew about the Kirchick story before anyone. They put up a teaser the night before, and Reason blogger Brian Doherty claimed that he planned to ask Ron Paul about it after the Jay Leno taping the day before it hit, but couldn't get close enough for a question.
2. Reason and Kirchick have been tag teaming virtually all of the follow-up stories on the newsletters. They were among the first two sources to hone in on Lew Rockwell as the alleged authors. Then today they simultaneously reported having conversations with Tom Lizardo, Paul's chief of staff, about an allegedly suppressed statement from the campaign fingering Rockwell.
QUESTION: why is a supposedly "libertarian" outfit like Reason apparently so close to a liberal statist publication like the New Republic, and particularly its writer Jamie Kirchick?
Here's what a little sleuthing around the net reveals:
It turns out that Jamie Kirchick and Reason blogger Dave Weigel (co-author of the most recent Reason hit piece) are both officers of a Facebook group called
"Inside Washington Weekly." This group has its own podcast website (http://www.americasfuture.org/podcast/iww/) where, not surprisingly, the newsletter story is the topic of the week.
The group's podcast history shows multiple panels where Kirchick and Weigel have appeared together (http://www.americasfuture.org/podcast/)
Kirchick and Weigel also have a bit of banter back and forth on their facebook messageboards about this story, plus some predating it where they exchange notes on political stories. Examples...
Jamie Kirchick (Yale) wrote
at 1:02am yesterday
is that an issue of the "Ron Paul Survival Report" he's holding up?
Jamie Kirchick (Yale) wrote
at 7:16pm on July 2nd, 2007
RE: Miliband. That's a very bad thing. The only reason I joined that group is because I can't stand Gordon Brown. But Miliband as Foreign Secretary was not a good move.
Kirchick may also have connections with the folks at Cato, particularly Tom Palmer and David Boaz - two of the most vocal Paul bashers there. The evidence here is more circumstantial but it's worth mentioning:
1. There are rumors all over the web that Kirchick and Palmer are friends (e.g. http://www.karendecoster.com/blog/archives/002707.html). This is very plausible because Kirchick and Palmer are both gay political bloggers based in D.C. That's a relatively small group of people so the chances that they know each other is very high.
2. Kirchick writes for a gay newspaper called the Washington Blade. Palmer is frequently interviewed by this paper and has been featured prominently in its pages, e.g. http://washingtonblade.com/2007/3-23...news/10249.cfm
3. Cato's bloggers, much like Reason, have a long history of exchanging links with Kirchick. e.g. http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/2007/...-of-the-state/
4. Kirchick and the Cato Institute's David Boaz are friends on Facebook.
Taken collectively, these records establish that the relationship between Kirchick and Reason/Cato predates the newsletter story substantially. Furthermore, Kirchick is apparently friends with several of the primary authors of the Reason and Cato hits on Ron Paul and appears to be actively exchanging notes with them on the story as it develops.