My Irony Meter Has Exploded

After reading these two items, it might be irreparably destroyed.

Item the first:

A Montgomery County man has filed a unique class action lawsuit in the wake of the Ashley Madison hacking scandal.

Christopher Russell, who is listed in court files only as a county resident, filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt Sept. 11 claiming that the site fraudulently represented its female users as actual women, but in fact most were automated bots designed to entice male users to spend money.

Russell spent $100 on the site to purchase credits that allowed him to message other users who he believed were real women, according to the complaint, but they may have actually been bots or workers paid by the site. The site is set up to allow married men and women to secretly coordinate affairs.


So you might say he is filing suit because a party with which he entered into a contract did not live up to the terms of said contract. Uh huh.

Item the second has to do with First Thing’s excommunication of Maureen Mullarkey from their blog. For those who missed the sordid affair, here is RR Reno’s post on the matter. For point of reference, here is Maureen’s blog, republished at One Peter Five. You can discern for yourselves if the post in question merited banishment.

One person who is not satisfied with First Thing’s actions: Mark Shea.

Mr. Reno:  Though I applaud your decision to give Maureen Mullarkey’s pope-hating blog the well-deserved ax, I think it is important to note that the level of sheer malice and bat@#$% [edited by PZ] crazy in the comboxes announcing he ouster at First Things is, like the popularity of Donald Trump among the wreckage of what was once conservatism, an indictment of the catechesis that conservatives have been getting from their manufacturers of thought and opinion over the last decade.

First Things–like the editors of National Review and the talking hairdos at FOX who have spent all summer trying to figure out how to team the Trumpkin Frankenstein base–have nobody to blame but themselves for the creation of that demographic. That Mullarkeys and similar lunatics have been given a forum and treated as voices to be taken seriously at all in conservative media is what has helped foster the subculture that is now roaring and frothing in that combox, as well as banging at the doors ofNational Review like zombies assaulting a shopping mall.  The sheer atavistic nuttiness on display among the Francis-haters in that First Things combox and elsewhere is the fruit of an Americanized fake gospel that FT and other conservative media has worked hard to promote.

Yes, in a post in which Shea describes others as bat@#$% crazy, lunatics, and zombies, and on a blog that is not exactly known for its decorum and lack of virulence, Mark Shea thinks that FT and its ilk are only to blame for sparking the development of an atmosphere that encourages the nuttiness that he claims is on display in the comments section of its blog.

Self-awareness, thy name is not Mark Shea.

More to explorer


  1. Mark confuses the real world with his blog. Unlike his blog, in the real world ideas he does not like actually get to be heard and debated on their merits. As for First Things, it is not even a pale shadow of what it once was under Father Neuhaus.

  2. Meter repair shops must be run by angels; and when some children (not referencing M.M. who surely has a relationship with objectivity and civility) use their spoons to pound on their tables, they may or may not learn what a mess they wear.

  3. Seems to me Mark Shea has selected the wrong target. The right target is the Catholic Church itself, which, over the last 50 years, has failed to teach and preach the Catholic faith with the result that most Catholics (cafeteria variety) have become de facto Protestants including, evidently, Mark Shea himself. Mark unknowingly, having evolved into a Protestant, finds real Catholics and their teachings abhorrent as has always been the case. Wake up Mark, you are living in the land of OZ.

  4. PZ: You got off easy. I suffered second and third degree burns on my right hand when my bull shit detector ring exploded.

  5. Yes, in a post in which Shea describes others as bat@#$% crazy, lunatics, and zombies, and on a blog that is not exactly known for its decorum and lack of virulence, Mark Shea thinks that FT and its ilk are only to blame for sparking the development of an atmosphere that encourages the nuttiness that he claims is on display in the comments section of its blog.

    Well of course. Shea’s constructed and molded his combox to such an echo chamber he assumes everyone else has to. That some might believe in diversity of ideas (even bad ideas) and allowing speech so it can be argued is completely unbelievable to one who hasn’t heard a disagreeing though in over five years now.

  6. Best to ignore the ignorant and despicable Mark Shea.

    As to First Things – Goodbye.

    RReno can’t even hold a candle to Maureen’s intellect, passion and artistry. I suspect jealousy. Maureen still has the Federalist and her own blog, so she won’t be missed. She survived LGBT’s persecution and will survive FT like the hero she is will always be.

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