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Under the Fedora: Breitbart

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I was so proud of myself this week, on Wednesday I was on a writing roll and finished my Under the fedora column in one fell swoop. I figured I’d get up Thursday morning do was some quick edits and I’d be able to submit it a full day early.

I woke up Thursday ready to do just that when I got a tweet from Ben Howe that Andrew Breitbart had died a few hours earlier.

So the column that had been ready will be my Monday column today I’m going to share my encounters with Andrew Breitbart.

The very first time I met Andrew Breitbart was at CPAC 2010 but the first time I interviewed him was at the Tax day rally in DC on April 15th of that year

Breitbart in this interview talked about calling out the lie of Andre Carter’s and the congressional black caucus claiming Tea Party member had shouted “Nigger” at them: (Never mind that a bunch of audio cameras were rolling and never picked it up.)

“They didn’t think in a million years that someone would challenge their authority.”

That was the essence of what he did, he used the new media to challenge an entrenched left that had not been challenged in this way since the first national broadcast of Rush Limbaugh.

My next Breitbart video came 5 months later at the September 12th Freedom Works rally. I sat on the grass between the media and Breitbart.

It wasn’t so much a video of Breitbart as a video of the media as he talked. The looks on their faces was classic, and he described them thus:

“They’re lovely as individuals but as an organism they’re flat out evil”

Andrew was never one to stand on civility; he reminded me of my brother who thinks that tact is what is used to hang things on a bulletin board.

It would be 5 months later before I shot Breitbart again, I videoed the opening of his CPAC speech in 2011

but it was the interview I shot of him the next day that was my favorite.

He actually leaped on a table before that interview and did it lying down on that table until the Hotel people made him get off of it.

Later that month when he went to Madison WI, I asked him for an interview and he called me at home

DTG: I’ve suggested that the events in Wisconsin are a living breathing GOP/or tea party ad for 2012 do you agree.

Breitbart: I agree I think that the visuals, the Hitler stuff, going after the democratic process the way they do, when they call (Gov Scott) Walker a dictator when he was democratically elected, when they do this the protesters are trying to say their minority status trumps the majority. The visuals alone for the ad campaigns are a strong message against this.

DTG: That being so how long can the MSM cover it up?

Breitbart: The acorn videos never played on ABC, NBC etc yet the America people where able to find out about it and Acorn is done. The more they deny the stories like the doctors slowly but surely the average American recognizes that they are not getting the truth. The MSM’s entire edifice is imploding. We’ve shaken the cage and the American People will see there is another way. There is a check and balance against them and it’s the new media

It was always tough to interview Breitbart for me without the video camera, he would say things in a way that I was not always comfortable with, but he was honest. When Andrew Breitbart saw evil,he called it evil and was not shy about it.

I next saw Andrew when he appeared in Lexington last September, I drove down to cover him and shot several short videos of him both speaking and the Q & A.

He answered a question on school reform

He commented on Elizabeth Warren

He talked about Greg Gutfeld who he thought the world of

He Talked about the multiplier of the new Media

…the Constitution as a Dog Whistle

… his tactics of choice

and assured us that the numbers were in our favor

This was a very significant event for me for several reasons. First it was the day that Breitbart gave me his cell phone number and secondly it was where the “bring it on” video became the only video I’ve shot to go viral

It was grabbed and copied, it appeared on MSNBC and Eric Boehlert e-mailed me asking if there was any video I hadn’t posted, there was, the following 14 seconds worth

In fact the comments got so nasty that when I got to Maine I shot a special video for those on the left who were unhinged over it

Although the Bring it on video was the most watched from the Lexington series, I think the most informative was this one

“They figured out that the way to attack America was to not go after the economic pillar of American Society but to go after the cultural pillar.”

When he said this, that’s when I really understood all he was doing and all that he had done. I’d commented how we now have two parallel cultures, the traditional American culture and the left’s secular humanist culture and Andrew understood that it was this division, this balkanization of America was by design.

The last three videos of Breitbart I would ever shoot was only three weeks ago. Andrew was part of a presentation by Citizen’s united on the occupods, he made a typical Andrew Breitbart entrance

and gave his introduction to the upcoming film

and during the Q & A he answered the last question I would ever ask him

When the occupods came to CPAC 2012 I was on the phone to call him and other bloggers to let them know the pop people had arrived. The very last words I would say to him were in passing in the lobby telling him the message on his phone from me was just to heads him up on the occupods arrival and he could delete it.

I wasn’t really emotional about Breitbart’s death like a lot of other people at first. I knew him, he knew me we talked when we saw each other and he took my calls when I bothered him (which wasn’t often). I’ve never been a big partier so I missed a lot of the classic Breitbart stories that folks like Stacy McCain heard and knew.

It wasn’t until I watched all the videos again that it started to hit me how much I’d miss him both as a person and as a pundit. The genius and greatness of Breitbart was the mirror he held up to the left and reflected them as they are. He asked us to have a camera ready and when we see anything send it to him and he’ll put it out there.

The punitive reactions of those who hated him disgust a lot of people who knew him, liked him or loved him, but they would have delighted Andrew, as Ace of Spades said:

The left makes all of his arguments for him. All Breitbart had to do was add two letters: “RT” [re-tweet].
The left had a chance to prove Andrew Breitbart wrong today.
Instead, they proved him right. Even in death, Andrew Breitbart makes the stupid hate-bag puppets dance for his amusement, and for ours.
I thought at first his death was a punking. In a way, it is. He continues punking the left into exposing exactly what it is.

But my last Andrew Breitbart story didn’t involve him directly but has to do with this very topic.

I loved that Andrew re-tweeted those who attacked him and on occasion I re-tweeted and engaged them, usually this would result in exchanges that were rather unpleasant, but there was one young liberal man in Michigan who instead talked to me. I talked about Andrew the person and suggested that he spend one week just reading his site unfiltered and then think on it.

Today I checked that young man’s twitter feed and noticed that is was devoid of the vitriol that so many others on the left have spent the day using (although some had tweeted some of it toward him).

Has he read Breitbart’s sites as I suggested, I don’t know but I have high hopes for this young man, Andrew started out on the left until he had his epiphany, and this fellow seems an intelligent fellow with a lot of years of experience ahead to teach him. Who knows where the seeds of the next generation of Conservatives activists might come from?

Meanwhile the battle goes on and the rest of us will keep fighting it.

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