Monday, March 31, 2008

An update on Michael Toubbeh (the Toxic Doctor)

An update on Michael Toubbeh (the Toxic Doctor)

by Pablo Fanque, All This Is That national affairs editor

Normally, Jack would handle writing about this topic. But he has been a little "freaked" by some of the reactions to his posts. Originally, Jack Brummet wrote three articles about Michael Toubbeh. One here, one here. and one here. And then Jack received a visit--at his work!--from someone close to the Doctor who begged Jack to remove the posts, since she loved him, and didn't want her children to see the articles. Jack had a heart and removed most of the material. It was all available elsewhere, and he didn't really want anymore in-person visits from the Doctor's emissaries.

Jack told me "None of this makes a lick of sense, Friendo, not even Bizarro sense. I mean, all of a sudden people are fighting little comments wars on ATIT. . .and yet, the guy apologized in public! On someone's blog, where it would be cached forever (forever being relative of course)."

He wrote when he pulled the material:

The editors of All This Is That have deleted all 13 comments from this thread, as well as the stories that engendered all the comments. The whole thing has become a tilt-a-whirl ride of people pretending to be other people; people attacking other people who were pretending to be other people; people posting with aliases stating only who they were not; and a raft of accusations and cross-accusations; moves and countermoves; posing, posturing, lies, and delusion.

You probably know I don't place a high premium on The Truth, or more accurately, what often passes for The Truth, because The Truth is usually not all it's cracked up to be.If you know me "in real life," you know that truth may now and then take backstage to a knee-slapper or a twisted, 98% fictional, and often libelous, side-trip. There are some things better than the truth. No. 1?: The music of human laughter.

This whole Michael Toubbeh trip suddenly became a karmic burden, and the vibes were beginning to stink the place up. Once I start editing comments and removing stories, well. . .then, it's no longer All This Is That, but a blog for everyone who agrees with me, where those victims of parody, or targets of stories, can't respond. Democracy is for everyone, and I'm just not ready to change the name of the blog to Some Of This Is Sort Of That Sometimes. I don't mind if someone lobs charges at someone as long as that someone has the chance to respond. Which they do. I don't mind debate. This is still America, isn't it? Free speech, while wounded, still lives.

But recently there has been a flurry of activity in the comments section of these articles..both from the apparently small pro-Toubbeh camp, and also from the seemingly vast anti-Toubbeh camp. And "what really fried my ass," Jack told me, "was that now the pro-Toubbeh has been commenting, dropping these morality bombs, and even (the f*****ng pieces of s***) threatening me with libel and mentioning my liability." You can read Jack's response to that in the comments sections for the above articles.

Interestingly, virtually everything Jack originally wrote and posted is available elsewhere on the internet, usually in several places. A blogspot blog, Michael Toubbeh, the Toxic Doctor seems to include nearly everything that was deleted from this blog. In addition, the same material is included in several of the internet and blog archiving sites--including the wayback machine and others.

As I researched this piece, I also found online, an original posting from another blog (or website) "From He's Dead Jim,} that included a photo, and the text of a letter of apology that Toubbeh wrote.

"Above is the letter sent to me by Dr. Toubbeh. It applies to all of those he has been involved with. I am allowed to post this for one week. Thanks to all of those who have assisted with this. Below is the text of the letter":

'Dear Claudette, I write to apologize to you and the other women with whom I have had relationships. The postings on your site and its aftermath have caused me to reflect on the past years of my life, and I did not like what I saw.
I now understand that my conduct has hurt a great many people and I understand clearly that both my actions and their consequences were wrong. I am deeply sorry for the things I have done during this period in my life and for the hurt and pain I have caused. I know you may not believe this, and I have given you good reason not to, but I did not set out with the intent to cause harm. Obviously, however, I have done so and have no one to blame but myself.
Seeing the pain I have caused has made me understand that this was of my own doing and that I must take responsibility and ensure that I do not repeat my actions of the past. I know that you and others may not put much faith in these words or my intention to change. I hope that it will provide at least some help for you to know that I am taking steps with the assistance of others towards a change not only in behavior but in belief and attitude.

I sincerely wish you the best,

Michael Toubbeh.'

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