I'm shock SHOCKED, I tell ya, that being married to a God fearing and husband obeying woman whom never say no to sex isn't sufficient to keep the quiverfuls from sneaking, cheating and lying.
Josh is "grieved for the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused my wife and family, and most of all Jesus". And most of all Jesus--more than his wife and family. He's most grieved for the pain he's caused Jesus. Jesus.
I read 80% of this SLOG post thinking: Oh please. If I wanted to create an Ashley Madison account "Josh Duggar" would be the first fake handle I would consider using.

But who am I to argue with a confession?
Is it possible that making one child every 9 months just wasn't enough for him?
This guy seems to spend a lot of time apologizing. Josh, the gig is up.
I'm sure there's still a golden seat for him to sit in Trump's cabinet. Hell, maybe his VP!
Child-molesting adulterer Josh Duggar is only sad he got caught. Never in his arrogant Christian dreams did he think HE would be exposed as the lying hypocrite he is. What a pathetic piece of not-quite-human flesh.
$10 says he'll be running for a GOP office pretty soon on a "family values" platform.
@4 - Why be satisfied with a single quiverful?
He also had/has a current profile on OKCupid with many gems to be gleaned from the questions.
The whole “Smithson” persona by Josh Duggart, reminds me of Ted Haggard’s “Art” persona/moniker he used for his assignations with his gay masseuse and others. It sounds like those who have to lived this “exemplar” public lives, developed another personality to cope with their serious behavioral problems..

Josh Duggart needs therapy, not construction or some sort of Christian pennnance, he needs therapy to work out his personality disorder he has developed. Obviously, he never really has come to terms with the molestation of his sisters and others..
The more I research the Quiverfull cult, the more disgusted I get. The way it is structured is pretty much guaranteed to allow boys and men to victimize girls and women. And get away with it, for the most part. Any child raised that way is completely brainwashed by the time they reach adulthood.

Maybe now that the world is watching, Josh Duggar will finally get some real, legitimate therapy. With real legitimate licensed practitioners. He needs it. They all do.
Gay men in Saudi Arabia and other anti-gay countries have been exposed. Their lives are in danger. Even the straight AM account holders are in trouble since extra-marital affairs are capital crimes. I believe there are 1200 .sa accounts on AM.
@4 Seriously. I mean, once you start hitting his numbers you probably start thinking more like Henry Ford.
Really good writing, Dan, especially around two things.

One, the hypocrisy of those who want to see WHO was on this website and what they were doing (none of our business).

Two, this statement:

"But whether someone was on Ashley Madison because she actually wanted to cheat or someone else was on the site because he merely got off on thinking about cheating,..."

That's very intriguing. Someone signing up for a cheating site for titillation, never intending to follow thru? I could see where that could be a very good version of safe sex but I have to wonder how many of AM's users were that for that reason.
Thank you dan. This beautiful.
When Duggar said he had been cheating on his wife, I immediately wondered if the whole Ashley Madison scam actually worked for him. But then he seemed to be counting porn as cheating, which is a little disappointing. What do we all think: what percentage of the guys on Ashley Madison actually got what they were guaranteed?
@13 FTW!
I'm hoping this is the first of many conservative douchebags to be outed in the days to come.
Agreed 17. 13 rocks.
To be pedantic, he didn't use passive voice. He tiptoed around it linguistically like a douchebag by saying that he became unfaithful to his wife, rather than that he betrayed his wife. But it's not passive voice.
"Quite literally demonize ..."
Uh, no, Dan. Unless you're talking about an actual Satan who can turn people into little demons, one can never literally demonize. I realize that the word "literally" has been turned into its opposite by devilspawn and their unthinking ilk, but please don't encourage them.


Not a grammar Nazi -- the Nazis actually had state power
@12 - I know, right? This, or these, hacker(s) is/are total amoral psychopaths. There is no question about it - no matter how much a person might condemn the AM subscribers, they should be able to realize that this guy, or these guys (and yes I know it's sexist, but I do think it's guys), are some truly dangerous pieces of work. This stuff makes Assange's or Manning's actions look umproblematically heroic by comparison.
Just saw Savage on MSNBC and what a tool. He thinks that it is alright to out the information about Duggar because Duggar is a hypocrite, but he thinks that other people who may be in public positions (i.e. politicians. etc) should not be outed unless it proves they are hypocrites. What a lame double standard. Any person who is a public official or who leads a very public life should be outed if they are on this Ashley website....there should be no special circumstances for ones and not for others If you are going to cheat then be prepared to get caught and face the consequences.
@3 It's not just the name on the account - it was paid for with a credit card in his name, billed to his grandmother's house, and connecting with women in the various places he was living. I mean, if you wanted to steal a credit card and then only hook up with partners where the person you stole it from was living I guess you could, but it's certainly not the easiest route.

What if said politician is single? What if they're in an open relationship? What they've publicly expressed support for people having affairs or simply said "it's nobody else's business"? What if they didn't even contact any other accounts - fake (mostly, from what I understand) or otherwise? You're not a hypocrite if your actions are consistent your professed moral standards; that's the point Dan is making, and which clearly has flown completely over your head.

Or should we have someone in-the-know take a gander to see if YOU have an AM account yourself?
@10 Not gay masseuse, gay MASSEURE. Important detail.
@23, guys like Duggar have done incredible damage to anyone who doesn't hew to their brand of "morality", especially GLBT people. Josh Duggar was an executive for an organization that tries to convince people gay men are child molesters. They are against bodily autonomy for women, especially when it comes to deciding when or if to become parents. Michelle Duggar recorded a robocall against a human rights ordinance in which she suggested that transpeople would prey on children in bathrooms.Given Josh's history of molesting his sisters, both are disgusting and hypocritical. Your daughter is safer alone in a restroom with a transwoman (who probably just wants to pee and maybe touch up her lipstick) than she would be if she were alone with Josh Duggar.

I don't care what goes on between consenting adults. If one of the members of Congress is cheating on his wife/her husband, I don't care, as long as s/he doesn't play the family values card. It's why I cared less about Bill Clinton cheating on his wife than Newt Gingrich cheating on his wife (not to mention, Clinton is still married to his first wife, while Gingrich is on number 3, I believe).

And I can't be too sorry for Anna Duggar; she married Josh knowing full well he'd abused his sisters. Did she not think he would cheat on her?

Oh, and how nice that he worries most about what Jesus thinks rather than apologizing for harming his sisters and his wife, who would be pressured to forgive him.

Consider it outing them for being hypocrites.
For the first time ever, I absolutely disagree with Dan Savage. Hacking is wrong. But cheating is also wrong. There is no justifying the lies that go along with it. If someone knew, if ANYONE knew, that I was being cheated on and didn't tell me, I would think that person a deplorable coward. Fidelity is about honesty. Honesty is about free will. When I am robbed of the truth, I am robbed of the free will choices I would make if I knew the truth. Nothing makes the hackers right, but sorry Dan, NOTHING makes actual non-consensual cheating right. Nothing. Honesty is paramount. The only time lying is excusable is if the person being lied to is trying to take away someone else's free will and the lie is preventing it. Any other use of deception is twisted, manipulative, and abusive. Period. You speak against relationship abuse but excuse "some" cheating? No. Cheating is abuse, and abuse in inexcusable.
@20, thank you, I was starting to wonder if I was the only one not able to find the passive anywhere in these lines.
@ 23 - For reasons stated by COMTE @ 25, I'd say the tool here is not Dan at all.

I am disappointed when you write "So far I feel bad for everyone who has been outed by the Ashley Madison hackers—everyone except Josh Duggar, the former head of FRC Action, the "political arm" of the antigay hate group Family Research Council."

I am now apologist for Duggar, however justifying a hack of people's private data because one monumental hypocrite gets caught, is like justifying the bulk collection of metadata by the NSA in the hope it will catch one single terrorist. Both are wrong and I am surprised you couldn't see the similarity.
@ 26 - Actually, it's "masseur", no "e".
@ 31 - There's a difference between saying that it justifies it and saying that you don't feel sorry.
@33 that would be fair enough, however in the following sentences Dan justifies the outing as a 'brutal tactic' but one he condones .... "Okay, back to outing: Outing someone for their private sexual conduct—even if everyone agrees that it's wrong—is a brutal tactic that should be reserved for brutes. Who's a legitimate target for outing? I'll let Barney Frank explain: "There's a right to privacy," Frank said on Real Time. "But the right to privacy should not be a right to hypocrisy. People who want to demonize other people shouldn't then be able to go home and close the door, and do it themselves."

@ 28 Ellie Abbott-Grasso You are absolutely bang on.
"...the hurt, pain and disgrace I caused..." Active voice.

"...the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused..." Passive voice.

Also: "I have been the biggest hypocrite ever"? Still trying to weasel yourself an award for first prize for *something here, Josh? I hear your sin did all the work, dude.

Hey. I understand what you're saying. I just disagree. I as grossed out by what this guy stands for as anybody else, but I've way more impressed by mercy than I am by karma.... I wrote about it here.…
Josh Duggar. The first and last "victim" of Gay Marriage.
@36 "...the hurt, pain and disgrace I caused..." Active voice.

"...the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused..." Passive voice. NOPE. Both sentences still active voice.

Both sentences are in active voice with a subject, transitive verb, and direct objects.

Passive voice examples: The hurt, pain, and disgrace *were* caused by me. The hurt, pain, and disgrace were caused by my sin.

What he did here was simply try to not own up by saying "I" did this, but said it was "my sin" that did it. But it was still active voice.
@36, nope, both of those are active. They just differ in whether it is an animate thing or an inanimate thing doing the action. It's not trivial to make good sounding passive analogous of these phrases since they are nouns with relative clauses (the pain (that) I have caused), but here's a shot:

the person [I] that this hurt pain and disgrace has been caused by

my sin that this hurt pain and disgrace has been caused by
@28, @35 - the point that you seem to miss is that it's about degrees of wrongness. Shades of gray. Of course cheating - any sort of deception - is wrong. I don't think Dan or anyone else here questions that. But the question is: how wrong? Once you acknowledge that not all forms of "cheating" are identical, then the magnitude of how wrong the AM hackers are becomes apparent. Is the man occasionally "cheating" on his terminally ill wife (who no longer wants or can have sex) with a sympathetic sex worker equivalent to a man who has multiple affairs with married women while maintaining a fiction of a completely monogamous and happy marriage? If you say they are, then you have a black-and-white view of the world that I, for one, simply can't relate to.
@14: effectively every male AM user was there for the titillation, whether he realized it or not. The m/f ratio of the users was something like 10/1 and that's before you even start hypothesizing about how many of the female accounts were fakes or inactive.

The media is being weirdly reticent about this part of the story, but it's worth repeating: whatever you think of their motives and justifications, the hackers' factual claims about Ashley Madison's business practices are completely borne out by the data. The whole thing was a scam from beginning to end, and there is no reason to believe that more than a fractional percentage of their users actually had any sort of affair other than with AM's accounts receivable department.
I'd agree except data dumps like this are very arbitrary. And the reality is many people who live in countries that kill sexual minorities (who use this service BTW) were outed as well. We don't all get to live in Seattle living a nice upper middle class life you know. And their lives are put at risk. Not the right to get married just the right not to be imprisoned or even killed for who they are.

So outing this particular asshole, as satisfying as it is, isn't worth putting their lives at risk just so you can feel better. Besides, he's already known as a child molester...he's already finished having any real political influence.
The people who publicly demand that everyone follow a strict and arbitrary (and when I say "arbitrary" I mean this stuff isn't even taken from Scripture but rather from their pet interpretation thereof) code of sexual mores are very frequently hypocrites who secretly engage in the sort of debauchery that would make many hardened perverts blush? I'm shocked, shocked I tell you.
And I'll be even more shocked here on SLOG once I get an internet connection and don't have to post from my phone.
Good points @12, @22, @31. I'm with Dan for a lot of this piece, but my stance continues in the case of Josh Duggar. This sick glee at "cheaters getting what they deserve" is messed up, even when it comes to Duggar. People should have a problem with Duggar because of his political stances, not because of what he does in private. Except his wife. She can be upset about what he does in private.

Unfortunately, Duggar's followers are not going to change their minds at this revelation - they're not going to realize his *stance* was wrong. They are just going to file him away in their rolodex of poor misguided souls and continue believing everything he encouraged them to believe. I don't think revealing hypocrisy is useful for anything but schadenfreude, which may feel good temporarily but is ultimately empty. When Gore was speaking for saving the planet a few years ago and people revealed the energy usage of his home, it didn't make his point any less valid. We are all hypocrites - I advise people against procrastination despite often practicing it myself. Or advise people to communicate with their partner when upset - while often clamming up in a huff myself. What is hypocrisy other than the very human inability to take one's own advice? I disagree with Duggar completely, but I'm sure he believes everything he preaches just as fervently, even though he is incapable of sticking to it. I disagree and will fight against his hateful stances, while leaving his private life out of it.

For every hypocrite revealed, how many regular people's lives are ruined by the witch hunt?
Quick and easy grammar tip:

The passive voice is formed this way = "to be" (conjugated) + past participle + (often) a complement introduced by "by"

"the hurt, pain and disgrace my sin has caused"

"the hurt, pain and disgrace that have been caused by my sin"
"the hurt, pain and disgrace that were caused by my sin"
"the hurt, pain and disgrace that could have been caused by my sin"

The active voice means that the subject of the verb is the one doing the action, the passive voice is when the subject of the verb is the one to which the action is being done ("action" being used here in its widest possible application).

You can also sometimes skip the auxiliary "to be", as in "a complement introduced by 'by'", an elliptical form of "a complement that is introduced by 'by'".
@20 It may not technically be "passive voice", but it is passive. "I became unfaithful" suggests it's something that happened beyond his control, like ageing or getting sick, rather than something he did.
I'm disappointed that you, Dan, would think of cheaters as innocent people who 'never hurt anyone.' Cheating always hurts someone. Cheating always involves lying- to either the spouse or the other person who may or may not even be aware that they've entered into a relationship with a married man.
I don't buy it, Dan. And I'm surprised that you do.
@ 47 - True, but someone who is paid to write, as Dan is, should know the difference between "giving oneself a passive role" and "writing in the passive voice."
I don't care what anyone on here thinks about cheating, as that is a completely personal choice. But I am rather take aback by how many people here (on Slog) are somehow shocked or surprised by Dan's stance on this subject matter, and on Duggar. Have you been listening to and reading the same Dan Savage as I have for the last 20+ years?

Dan on Cheating: "Cheating is permissible when it amounts to the least worst option, i.e., it is allowed for someone who has made a monogamous commitment and isn't getting any at home (sick or disabled spouse, or withholding-without-cause spouse) and divorce isn't an option (sick or disabled spouse, or withholding-without-cause-spouse-who-can't-be-divorced-for-some-karma-imperiling-reason-or-other) and the sex on the side makes it possible for the cheater to stay married and stay sane. (An exception can be made for a married person with a kink that his or her spouse can't/won't accommodate, so long as the kink can be taken care of safely and discreetly.)" (…)

Dan on Shaming: Do you all remember when he was talking about Larry Craig and said "Outing someone, as I wrote when I helped out one asshole and declined to participate in the outing of another, is a brutal tactic and should be reserved for brutes." Dan pretty much has been not to engage in public shaming unless that target has used the source of that shame in the past to harm others. (…)

You can disagree. But don't pretend that this is somehow "For the first time ever, I absolutely disagree with Dan Savage." @28. This is absolutely consistent with Dan's moral framework that has been established here for quite a while.
I have a lot of pity for his wife. Quiverfull is like the Taliban. She's been brainwashed her whole life, is poorly educated (home schooled until age 16), and now has 4 young kids. She'll probably decide life with Josh is better than being a single mom. Or the Duggars will find a way to blame her for Josh's perversions.
@50 IMO, the stance you have quoted is sometimes at odds with the advice given. I rarely see an exploration of whether the spouse may be open to divorce. More often, I see concern that the would-be-cheater is not open to divorce and is looking for a way to remain married without compromising his/her desires/needs. Furthermore, the concept of withholding without cause is highly subjective, and the frequency of sex that is acceptable or unacceptable to maintain a satisfying connection is highly individual on both sides. Like the old joke in Annie Hall, when the therapist asked how often they had sex. (Paraphrasing) Annie says constantly, like 3x a week, Alvie says hardly ever, like 3x a week.

@49 - is there a passive-aggressive voice?
@ 53 - I'm not sure, but we can take a moment to ponder upon all the hurt, pain and disgrace that would not have been caused had Josh Duggar acted according to his professed values.
The one part of Dan's post that I disagree with is that you should feel sorry for Josh Duggar. No one should feel sorry for Josh Duggar. Along other things, he is a sex offender who was never held accountable.

But more relevant to the AM stuff, his espoused belief system - hardcore fundamentalist Christianity - wasn't what he actually believed. He actually believed something very different. Your actions, not your words, indicate whether you live your values.

He pretended to have a certain belief system because it gave him access to power and powerful people. It gave him status. He had photo after photo taken with presidential candidates. He was on a popular TV show. By denigrating and treating gay people as second class citizens, he gained more power and prestige, all the while believing something very different than what he claimed publicly.

There's nothing to feel sorry for. He lied so he could achieve very specific ends. The ends he achieved caused others hurt and heartache and despair who didn't deserve it. Feel no sympathy for him. Feel nothing but enmity. It's what he deserves.
Do I understand correctly: it is wrong to share stolen information about someone's sexual habits. Unless I personally judge that person to be a "hypocrite"? Why? Is this some kind of eye-for-an-eye system of ethics? I think most of us believe those systems to be brutal and outmoded. And even if we do believe in eye-for-an-eye... Did duggar spread embarrassing details of people's sex lives on the Internet? This is more like an eye for a nose. I fear the mob.
Or is the justification meant to be that hypocrisy is a worse offense than publicizing-stolen-information-of-an-embarrassing-sexual-nature? If you say so. You don't have to have sympathy for the guy, but sympathy is beside the point. I see no reason why any person (journalist or otherwise) is justified searching for *any* non-spouse's data in this leak. The Gawkers and the Daily Mails and The Strangers should stop.
(Sorry if this shows up a bunch of times I am having trouble posting)
Sorry, consecutive post #3. It's late and I can't seem to stop arguing with imaginary people.

Occurs to me that the ultimate justification for outing Duggar that Dan would more likely give is that it makes the world a better place. Sorry, still not buying it. I do not want people going around thinking they can do whatever they want to their enemies, so long as they personally believe that they are making the world a better place.
My imaginary debate partners keep making new arguments: "If a moralizer tells me not to do X, and in fact makes money by telling people not to do X, then it is only fair to make the observation that he is himself a big fat X-er."
Agreed, but only if the information is public. If Duggar was going around telling people not to wear baseball hats, then by all means point out that he wears a baseball hat himself. However, if Duggar is telling you what to do in your bedroom, just tell him it is none of his damn business. Private information is still private, and exposing it is still cruelty.
Ms Future - Yes, anyone who takes on such a unilateral course of agency usurpation takes full responsibility to be proved right in the end and full fault if it collapses, but when it does collapse all too often the cheater then tries to go back to what would have been a reasonable position from which to negotiate.

I can agree to a point with Mr Savage's foundation that sometimes cheating is the least worst option. He seems to overrate the minus quantity of divorce, with the result that, like a chess-playing computer programmed to, say, overvalue the advantage of having two bishops against bishop and knight or two knights, the mechanism operates smoothly but leads to an inferiour position. A bigger quibble is that, however sincere Mr Savage's professed strictures against cheating in general may be, his having announced the blueprint to obtaining a pass under circumstances XYZ basically reduces them to lip service. Who among us couldn't dress up circumstances UVW to look enough like XYZ to get the pass? (Perhaps the saving grace here is that LWs often mistake the circumstances and present UVW thinking they're presenting XYZ.) This is illustrated by how Mr Savage advises, say, siblings of cheaters to adopt a least-possible-bad-behaviour view that basically amounts to believing Linnet Doyle's account of the Death on the Nile love triangle.

I'd actually find it interesting to see how Mr Savage's point of view would work if he were running his own version of AM in which he would personally review all applicants and only admit those who received his own personal pass.
Sarah Palin: “This Ashley Madison Lady Needs to Keep Her Hands to Herself!” -
Oh my God, lying hypocrites are so stupid.

If you want to create an account on Ashley Madison or any other site you want to use to flirt with others and cheat on your wife, you don't use your REAL email address. You create a new, fake one on Google, Yahoo, or a million other places.

In Josh Dugger's case, they confirmed it was him by tracing the credit card billing address back to addresses he was connected to, and you can't fake that. But I'm under the impression that it wouldn't have been found at all except for searching by email address -- an email address that was obviously not a secret, private one.

Also, Dugger has blamed his infidelity on his porn addiction. Which is so fucking stupid. AM is a site for cheaters, not for those looking for porn. Porn doesn't cause infidelity. If anything, it might provide a release valve that might stop a guy from cheating once he's rubbed one out.
But #13 Dougsf and #17 Saxfanatic - to think like Henry Ford your entire production line has to be black ... And it seems this gentleman's tastes run to blondes ...
@ 62 - But watching porn and cheating on your spouse is one and the same in the mind of those who might still give credence to anything that Josh Duggar says. Basically, he just tried once again to absolve himself by blaming his behaviour on the devil, and many in the fundy crowd will lap it up.

Religion makes the brain shrink, apparently.
And #53 Lance FTW
IDK after incestuous pedophilia this is practically positive PR. At least the strippers were presumably non-related adults!

@21: I think Dan meant literally literally. It's not unheard of for these people to think that
homosexuality is caused by demon possession and try to do weird exorcism shit on them.

And all these people acting like the concept of exposing hypocrisy is so hard to grasp- puh-lease! It ain't that difficult. If you base your whole life and career on trying to deny people rights based on saving "family values" while making a mockery of said values you deserve to be called out.
Fiscal conservative can preach all day about the evils of welfare and no one should give a shit about their sex lives but if it turns out that they themselves are getting farm subsidies or whatever then they should be called out on that.
@66 Of course, hypocrites deserve to be exposed if this can be done in an ethical way. But what actions are we allowed to take in the name of exposing hypocrisy? Can I hack Dan's computer to tell the world he jerks off to Jesus porn? Wrong is wrong.
Ok that was a silly example. How about this: can I record Dan's phone calls in hopes of catching him saying something non-GGG to his husband? Bear in mind that he is a public figure who makes his living telling other people how to behave.
I know I am harping, and I confess To some self-interest in this. I am in the data. Not my real email, but credit card info, from 6 years ago. Wife found out about my cheating, and we moved on long ago. But I do not want random people snooping through my dirty laundry, regardless of how much of an asshole or hypocrite I happen to be (or they think me to be.)
@joeburner2: I sympathize with you and so does Dan, I think. I think Dan requires a pretty high level of hypocrisy before saying it's justified.
This is not your everyday Joe that seems to endorse monogamy but cheats on his wife. Not that that's right either but I think Dan is talking about people who actively try to deny rights to others, to encourage laws against gay marriage, who make money specifically by holding themselves up as paragons of family values, etc. If you go back and read his posts he says this pretty much only applies to public figures, professional moralists who try to force their views on others while not following themselves.
I'm not sure about where the line on getting the info is drawn. I think he has been in favor of say male escorts outing fundie closet cases. I don't think he would have endorsed the hack ahead of time but I'm not sure.
Personally I think the "two wrongs don't make a right" approach is simplistic. There are different levels of wrong and trying to make it hard for one same-sex partner to be at the other's death bed (or whatever) trumps saying that hypocrite sucked my dick last weekend. That said I think the AM hack has caused too much collateral damage to pass that test.
@ joeburner2: Actually, I should say, I know Dan would sympathize with you because yours is exactly the kind of case he talked about when he said (via Glenn Greenwald) that the data shouldn't be revealed: you and your wife have worked it out between yourselves and it's nobody else's business.…

Thanks chi_type, for the nice words and for your well-thought out response to my argument. I still disagree, but I see where you are coming from.
Agreed, it is a blurry line and I don't think that any of these actions is blameless.
Also, if it makes you feel any better I doubt many people are willing to go trawling through millions of names to find random neighbors or co-workers so odds are good no one will ever see it.
Yes as things are I am probably safe enough. Just hoping no one off shore makes the credit card stuff easily searchable by name.
@joeburner2, I don't read Dan (or I think anyone commenting here?) as saying the hack was okay. But instead saying that *given* the hack happened, outing certain people was okay. So he's not saying it would be okay to record phone calls in your analogy, etc.

Personally I think his line cuts too close to condoning the hack with your actions while denying it with your mouth, but so as we're on the same page...

Hope you come through this okay.

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