I am not worthy

I’ve have been described previously as “a nasty bastard“, amongst other unrepeatable things. I have seen politicians cross roads and crowded halls to avoid having to speak to me and National doesn’t even want me as a member.

But I simply am not worthy when it comes to blogging compared with Dan Savage.

If you don’t want people to say mean things about you, don’t go into politics (or blogging). And when they do (and they will) it is never smart to whine about the mean mean meanies who are so mean to you. Not only will you gain no sympathy or new support, but then everyone will be repeating all those mean things and chuckling.

But former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum isn’t the sharpest tool in the shed. And he had been the subject of a cruel (but well deserved) prank for a very long time.

After Santorum’s vile statement in 2003 in which he discussed his support for anti-gay sodomy laws in terms of bestiality and incest, Dan Savage decided to have a little fun. He held a contest for a new definition for “santorum” and the winner was:

    The frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the by-product of anal sex.

Spreading Santorum webpage was set up for tracking the extent to which the new definition could be detected in culture and it was clever enough that it drew web traffic placing it as the first listing when “santorum” was googled. And so there it sat as the first result through the rest of Rick Santorum’s term as Senator and his failed reelection bid.

Outstanding. I think I have found a new blogging mentor.

But with his presidential campaign, there was a pretty good chance that eventually “Rick Santorum for President” along with news articles about the campaign would have gotten the traffic necessary to push the aging joke off of the front page. And it likely would have, were it not for the actions of two people.

First, Savage encouraged his readers to go back and select the link to keep it active in the Google search matrices. Enough responded to keep Savage’s santorum link in place ahead of the candidate’s page. In fact, the campaign site was fourth, after a Wikipedia article and another site’s reference to Savage’s definition.

But the real boost to Spreading Santorum came from none other than Rick Santorum himself. On July 18 he went on a radio show to complain about the way he was being mistreated by Savage and in addition to some recent comments also noted the website. And then someone with a whole lot of hero worship and no political sense must have advised the next move: Santorum sent out afund raising letter with the following sentence:

Remember this is not the first time Savage has attacked us on our stance of supporting American values. Savage and his perverted sense of humor is the reason why my children cannot Google their father’s name.

And when this letter was published on Politico on July 20, which turned into articles in the media, just what do you suppose that people did? Obviously they set out to find out why you couldn’t google “Santorum”.

But July 22, the presidential campaign link had dropped to eighth place behind:

The campaign site has now moved back up into sixth place. But Savage is goading Rick Santorum, threatening to make his first name into a vulgar word as well. I guess now we’ll have to wait and see if Sen. Santorum is so very incredibly stupid that he bites at the bait.

I bow before the blogging  brilliance of Dan Savage. Politicians, especially, should NFWAB.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

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