How bad did it get for him? Death threats, thousands of angry e-mails, some rather disgusting cartoons. Follow the link to the comments on his National Conversation Blog and see how he was treated.
Or, watch some of the YouTube video's of him on CNN.
Now comes Joe the Plumber's turn "in the barrel". Joe's crime was that he asked a question that Barack Obama gave the wrong answer to. Now, Joe's getting his tax records looked at, his license (or lack of) checked out by the media.
Everyone is focusing on Joe. There are rumors that some remenant of the Keating 5 planted him at the Obama walk around, or that Fox News had him there as a plant.
The conspiracy theories from the left are laughable. It doesn't matter if "Joe the Plumber" was planted by Keating left-overs, coached by Karl Rove, paid by Fox News, and was the love child of Rush Limbaugh, it was OBAMA who answered the question. Barack was the one who said he wanted to "spread the wealth"; through higher taxes.
No matter what Joe did or asked, he couldn't force "The One" to give that answer, unless of course there is some right wing thought machine out there that can plant those answers in Obama's head. If they had that technology, I'm sure Obama would have been on the debate claiming that Karl Marx was his idol, and that socialism is good for America.