Friedlander used to be the editor-in-chief of Air America, which theoretically makes him an important liberal person, and a shoo-in for a Huffington Post blog. This morning, he came up with a gambit: Just as Andrew Breitbart once offered $100,000 for the archives of a liberal listserv (the better to attack his ideological enemies), Friedlander would offer $100,000 for a sex tape of Glenn Beck (the better to make everyone vomit in their mouths). Two problems, though: Friedlander doesn't have $100,000, and nobody thinks Glenn Beck has a sex tape. No matter, here's what Friedlander said:
It is time to pop the tea baggers' favorite balloon (so what if it will be replaced by another?), and with that in mind I hereby offer to negotiate a $100,000 payday to the person who will come forward with a sex tape or phone records or anything else that succeeds in removing Glenn Beck from the public eye forever. I am not offering the cash myself, but I will broker the deal and/or raise the money for what you bring to the table. (And it better be good.)
Oh, how awkward. A poorly conceived joke that only highlights the joker's impotence. Unless Friedlander was actually serious? He made an email address—firstname.lastname@example.org—to aid his mission. (Obviously this man has never attempted to secure a sex tape before. They don't just rain from the sky every time you do a little dance to summon them, Beau.) Not long after, though, the Huffington Post moved "$100,000 For Glenn Beck's Sex Tape" from the Politics category to Comedy. Then, they disappeared the post entirely.
Friedlander told the Observer it was mostly a joke, but his HuffPo editors punished him by taking away his posting privileges: "As a blogger for the Huffington Post, it feels like a scarlet letter on my shirt." More depressing words have never been spoken by a professional journalist.
Other, perhaps, than the words in Friedlander's "Apology to Glenn Beck," in which he grovels for "actually trying to mimic what I saw as the way right wingers go about these matters, and by misapprehending the way they do things, I went too far."
Oh, shut up, all of you. May the sun go down on this most disheartening day in liberal journalism, comedy, and sex tapes and may we never, ever speak of it again.
In other news, Glenn Beck has yet to deny that he raped and murdered a girl in 1990. [Observer, Observer, HuffPo, HuffPo]