First of all: no, nobody asked for my opinion.
It's been a little bit now since the big recent pissing contest between supporters of Mike Vanderboegh and of "Kerodin" (and to a lesser extent, between the principals themselves), and it occurred to me during all the tiresome flap that there seemed to be an obvious point nobody was really making. (Apologies if I just missed it.)
Among the fecal flingery were accusations that "Kerodin" was an ATF plant, and then that MBV was an ATF plant. Oh gawd, "the work of the enemy done for free," indeed. As Joel so brilliantly put it: "See, this is why I don't do militia any more..."
Now for full disclosure, I don't know much about "Kerodin" at all. What little I've seen doesn't resonate with me at all--it never did--but I simply don't know enough to form a conclusion I'd rely on.
And I admit, I did really want Mike to remain above it all, and not take what really did look like fight-picking bait to me. But he did. I can even understand why he did*, but it's still a disappointing blemish on an otherwise outstanding gadfly record.
But MBV as an ATF snitch just made me laugh. Laugh. Why, you ask? (I realize you didn't ask. It's just a construct of opinion writing.) Now that's simple. For that to be true, or even plausible, it would mean that ATF must have been capable of producing a snitch-provocateur of the quality of Mike Vanderboegh. And that's just rainbow-shittin' unicorn territory right there.
Think about it. Has anyone ever heard of a fed-snitch or -plant that wasn't laughably one-dimensional, pluperfectly tailored to the agency's meme-set (usually all the memes at the same time, oddly enough), and above all possessed exclusively and only of an authoritarian-statist approach to...everything? They stick out like sore thumbs: "Q: How do you tell the federal snitch at the militia meeting? A: He's the only one talking about blowing shit up."
Mike is the very antithesis of all this. He quite openly advocates "leaderless" organization. He understands how to share information so that people can draw their own conclusions. He is well-versed in the historical hubris of the state, and does not pull punches in exposing it. He is delightfully self-effacing. And most of all, he understands the difference between aggression and reaction. (For that reason alone he could not viably be a product of the state.)
Nope. MBV couldn't be a snitch. The government just isn't capable of being that creative.
* Additionally, I'll simply forgive him that prurience. MBV has been an absolute, ah, wolverine regarding the Gunwalker case for over a year, at great effort and cost to himself, only to discover recently that the real fix was in, ultimately, from among ostensible friendlies. Not a surprise, really, but disappointing in a way that gets even to hardened cynics. After that much investment and admirable success even within a rigged system, he's earned himself a lash-back or two.