What the Pezzi saga tells us about Breitbart

Earlier today, we pointed out that Andrew Breitbart's Big Government published posts from Dr. Kevin Pezzi smearing Shirley Sherrod as a racist.

Pezzi is rather overtly racist, and has repeatedly used racial epithets like “Japs” and “Chinks,” and claimed Native and African Americans should have been grateful for their subjugation by whites. Additionally, Pezzi is a doctor/“sex expert”/author/inventor/huckster, who, among other things, says he has “beaten Bill Gates” on a math aptitude test, is “bigger than some porno stars,” and stumbled upon a cure for cancer. Pezzi has also apparently created a series of at least six fake MySpace profiles of women claiming to be big fans of his sex books.

In response to our posts, Big Government has now disappeared Pezzi's articles. If you attempt to visit the pages for his posts and bio, you are greeted with an error. While Big Government has disappeared Pezzi from their website, they posted the following “Editorial Note” from “Publius,” which doesn't mention Pezzi by name:

Earlier this week, we read an on-line column which provided one of the most thorough and well-researched examinations of the many controversies surrounding former USDA employee Shirley Sherrod. We asked the author of the column for permission to reprint his article. Since publishing the articles, we have been made aware of other writings from this author which do not reflect the principles and values of this site. Because of this, we have removed the articles from Big Government. While we stand by the information contained in the articles we published, we do not wish to see the underlying issue confused or diminished by other work the author has done. We regret the error.

So, let me get this straight: After Breitbart and his “Big” websites became the focus of well-deserved criticism and national ridicule for posting a misleadingly edited video and smearing Shirley Sherrod as a racist, their defense was that Breitbart merely posted the video he was given, and he didn't bother doing any extra research. (Breitbart later conceded that the video was out of context and that he “should have waited for the full video.”)

Yet in the wake of this embarrassment, Big Government sought out posts from a guy smearing Sherrod as a racist without doing any research into his background. Notice a pattern here? Breitbart and co. are so eager to cover their tracks and somehow “prove” that Sherrod is a racist that they have long-since abandoned any pretense of responsible behavior.

Big Government would not have had to do anything more than read the bio he posted on their website to realize something was amiss. Among other claims, Pezzi claimed that he was “making a robotic chef.”

(Media Matters found out damning information about Pezzi within minutes simply by doing a Google search.)

While Big Government doesn't mention Pezzi by name or link our criticism of him, the site still “stand[s] by the information contained in the articles we published.” As we pointed out, in addition to being written by an unfathomably ridiculous person, the articles were inaccurate.

Why would anyone (still) take Andrew Breitbart and his websites seriously?