Thousands believe this pizzeria is a front for Clinton child sex ring

Comet Ping Pong in Washington, DC

Comet Ping Pong in Washington, DC

There is very little Combat! blog today, because I am about to get on a plane for the third week in a row. While I submit to the tender mercies of United Airlines, how about you consider that we may have finally broken democracy? Thanks to fake news stories and social-media conspiracy theorists, thousands of people now believe that Comet Ping Pong, a pizzeria in Washington, DC, is the headquarters of a child sex-trafficking ring run by Hillary Clinton. The owner and his staff have been getting death threats, and they’ve seen their children’s pictures used as photos of victims in fabricated stories like Pizzagate: How 4Chan Unconvered the Sick World of Washington’s Occult Elite. Don’t search #pizzagate on Twitter unless you want to lose faith in the American experiment. It’s possible that we have failed to teach millions of people the critical thinking skills necessary to function in civil society. Everyone had to be this dumb in the early 19th century, before the advent of public schools. But could they share their dumb ideas this effectively? Perhaps the analog here is not present citizens:past citizens but present publishers:past publishers. Everyone may have been dumber in the 1830s, but they were not the editors of their own newspapers. O brave new world.

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  1. This is a really disappointing post. Dan, you clearly don’t possess the context to approach this material in a genuine way.

    Consider this: Child trafficking is real. Pedophilia is real. Pedophile networks within the Catholic church is a proven reality, as is the Franklin Credit Union scandal involving Boys Town, not to mention plenty of famous and powerful people–like Sandusky, Saville and Epstein–all proven pedophiles who abused dozens if not hundreds of vulnerable minors.

    I doubt you spent much time sifting through the various data coming out of this crowd-sourced investigation. While much of it is speculative, circumstantial and falls far short of evidence of crimes committed, there is a cumulative effect for those who approach this with an open mind that makes dismissing this as just a hoax difficult to accept.

  2. Seriously? Show me any concrete evidence of child trafficking associated with this business or the Clintons. I agree that pedophilia is real, and that powerful people and institutions have been implicated in it. But the scandals you mentioned have known victims and specific evidence suggesting they happened. None of the articles, websites or discussion boards I read on this subject offered any evidence. I have no problem dismissing it as a hoax, because I have seen nothing to suggest that it is true. A bunch of people believe in the Rothschild conspiracy, too. That doesn’t make it real.

  3. yes, I take this seriously, unlike you who dismisses it and literally tells people NOT to look at this “unless you want to lose faith in the American experiment”. you don’t hold out the possibility that there is any truth to found here. you call it a hoax and fake news because that’s what the New York Times says. what evidence do you have that this is a hoax (a humorous or malicious deception)? if it was just a political hit on HRC, why would the pro-Trump partisans keep at it? HRC lost the election, so where’s the incentive to keep this going?

    I said in my first comment the evidence so far falls short of indicating crimes have been committed. what most of the researchers I’ve been reading have been calling for is a formal investigation, because without subpoena power, there probably won’t be concrete evidence. that’s why we have law enforcement and a justice department.

    I think you are wrong to dismiss this as a hoax. remember, Hillary’s health was framed as just a right-wing conspiracy theory by the mainstream media until the video of her collapsing proved conclusively something was very wrong with her.

    you say believing in things doesn’t make it true, and I agree. I would add that just because the New York Times puts it in print, also doesn’t make it true–WMDs anybody?

    as for Attempt’s comment, I hope he/she realizes perpetuating 21st century McCarthyism is what he/she is doing by referencing the Post’s blacklist, which includes Truthout and Counterpunch, among many other sites. this is an information war, and I see which side this blog has chosen. too bad.

  4. The Washington Post article and the list it references both seem problematic in the extreme. As far as the pizzeria child sex ring goes, though, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. It would be extraordinary if Hillary Clinton or comparably public figures were running a pedophilia club out of a DC-area restaurant. I think we would need compelling evidence to even entertain the idea, because it is by its nature farfetched. I reject the argument that I need evidence it is a hoax, because you can’t prove a negative. The onus to provide evidence is on the person who claims something is happening, not on the person who doesn’t believe it. So far, the evidence I’ve seen has interpreted ordinary emails as coded communications, and pictures of parents with their children as documentary proof of child prostitution. I think those are only compelling if you assume the conspiracy in the first place. I’m not trying to insult you, here. But if this story is true, it is the craziest scandal in the history of American politics. I would need a smoking gun to believe it or even believe that a formal investigation is warranted. The evidence I’ve seen wouldn’t justify a search warrant, much less a DOJ investigation.

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