Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Inside (Israel) Baseball, cont'd, Our Man Elli Strikes Back Dept.: "Sit down and shut up, you embarrassingly ignorant braying, jealous ass!"

In a nutshell (and do we mean “nuts”): A former Israel sports editor ("who BTW has been a League Coordinator at American Football in Israel since 2002," he tells us) and colleague of Our Man Elli in Israel mails an opinion piece in response to the Jerusalem Post’s late report that there won’t be pro baseball in Israel in 2008. Jay L. Abramoff contends that paper had no right to criticize the league and he throws in an accusation that Our Man Elli is biased in his reporting. Our Man Elli gets mad and responds. We publish the exchange and then show the backstory— that Abramoff had run whining to Elli’s editors with the same shpiel back in August 2007, days after the publication of his landmark Israel Baseball League exposé that set league founder Larry Baras and his crew on the highway to hell. Anyway, Elli has now responded to an apologetic email Abramoff sent him, which reads in part:

“I have the utmost respect for you… sorry… The fact that I don't get pieces on the IBL published in ‘Jewish newspapers’ does not mean that my opinion means any less than yours… your personal feelings about the IBL and its management should be clear to anyone who reads your ‘news’ reports… What exactly have you done to improve the safety of those playing softball or baseball in Israel, besides maybe bitching about it?... the Post sucks, and Haaretz is even worse…Have you reported, besides on a friend's blog (for which you get paid?), that Bachar (I admit that I do not know who that is) and Rosen have given sworn testimony regarding Baras's "potentially criminal behavior"?... blah blah blah… Cheers.”

Since then, Abramoff has rattled the sabre, demanding we remove his emails from the site and others have told us that we’re being to hard on the guy because he’s not in Elli’s league.

Ecch. After a ten-month whispering campaign against him by wannabe journos who are not in his league, we’ll let Our Man blow off some steam.

From: Elli
Subject: Re: The Israel Baseball League
Date: June 10, 2008 10:45:14 AM PDT
To: Jay L. Abramoff
cc: Haaretz English Edition, Jerusalem Post Sports


I really did not want to pursue this issue, nor do I have the time to attempt to understand your convoluted email. But since you persist in insinuating to the editors of Haaretz and the Post – who I am sure are equally fed up with your pathetic whining – that my reporting was colored by personal considerations and conflict of interest, I feel it important to set the record straight against your malicious lies and innuendoes.

1) "that Bachar (I admit that I do not know who that is)" – really? A seminal figure in the story of the IBL, and you have no clue who Natalie Bachar is? In the words of Arlo Guthrie, if you didn't know about that one, well then what else don't you know? MEGA Brands? Spectrum Capital Group? Marvin Goldklang? Andrew Zimbalist? Penn Club? Mitchel Rosenzweig? Do you have any idea what the connection is between any of these names and the IBL? And yet you consider your opinion as valid as anyone else's: "….just my opinion based on what I have read and what I experienced." Well yes, as valid as anyone else who went to 25 games and enjoyed a six-pack in the stands but otherwise had no idea what was going on then nor since. But not as valid as anyone who followed the league for two years, did the digging, did the reporting, and knows what's going on. So why not just sit down and shut up, your ignorance is embarrassing.

2) "…but even though you claim to be an unbiased journalist, your personal feelings about the IBL and its management should be clear to anyone who reads your 'news' reports, and Haaretz, specifically, should have inquired further about them before running your 'not-color' expose on the IBL." I have asked you four times to spell out exactly what you mean, and to point out where there is a bias in my reporting. So far, nine and a half months after I wrote my expose for Haaretz, four other Jewish newspapers in America, and Tabloid Baby, as well as in all my reporting since, no one has yet to deny, refute, or claim a single sentence in any of the writing to be false. If you’d like to be the first, then step up to the plate. If not, just sit down and shut up, your ignorance is embarrassing.

3) "Have you reported, besides on a friend's blog (for which you get paid?)" – Not that it's any of your business whether, or how much, I get paid for anything I do, but please tell everyone what difference it makes. If my writing has been affected by my being paid or not being paid, by being paid a dollar or a million dollars or no dollars, please share it with everyone. If not, just sit down and shut up, your ignorance is embarrassing.

4) "You know as well as everyone in the journalism business that the difference between 'alleged' and 'fact' is not always clear - even after court trials." – Your continuing insistence as a so-called journalist (btw, have you ever written an expose, on any subject, anywhere, in your professional career?) on defending the founder of the IBL does beg the question: are you by any chance on the payroll of the IBL?

5) “I agree, the Post sucks, and Haaretz is even worse" – I never said, wrote, or implied that either paper sucks. I wrote that they were negligent in covering the IBL, though paying you to cover it would have been worse negligence. But your obvious envy and resentment over never being paid to write anything about baseball in Israel has been made abundantly clear to anyone reading your emails, which are nothing more than the braying squeals of a jealous ass.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Jay -You're a good guy was from the first time you extended your hand in friendship when we (the players) arrived. Elli is nothing more than the trash we take out twice a week.