In blogosphere slang, a ‘Moby‘ is a particular kind of troll, namely a left-winger who posts right-wing extremist material on right-wing sites in order to discredit them. (This is somewhat distinct from a ‘concern troll‘, who seeks to sow dissension by posing as a concerned supporter.)
The ‘Moby’ species of troll is named after the eponymous electronic music producer, who in February 2004 proposed this tactic and is supposed to have invented it.
James Taranto, however, reminds us the tactic is anything but original.
Food for thought comes from this passage from a Saul Alinsky biography, quoted by David Horowitz:”
College student activists in the 1960s and 1970s sought out Alinsky for advice about tactics and strategy. On one such occasion in the spring of 1972 at Tulane University’s annual week-long series of events featuring leading public figures, students asked Alinsky to help plan a protest of a scheduled speech by George Bush, then U.S. representative to the United Nations, a speech likely to be a defense of the Nixon Administration’s Vietnam War policies The students told Alinsky that they were thinking about picketing or disrupting Bush’s address. That’s the wrong approach, he rejoined–not very creative and besides, causing a disruption might get them thrown out of school.
“He told them, instead, to go hear the speech dressed up as members of the Ku Klux Klan, and whenever Bush said something in defense of the Vietnam War, they should cheer and wave placards, reading “The K.K.K. supports Bush.” And that is what the students did with very successful, attention-getting results.
Keep that in mind if you see/hear/read reports of racial slurs and calls for violence on the part of alleged “Tea Partiers”. Verily, “there is nothing new under the sun.”
UPDATE: Welcome Althouse readers, and thanks for the link!