Sunday, December 29, 2013

Eighteen Jaw-Droppers By The Right Wing


As 2013 winds down, we present another twofer: first, Janet Allon's piece at Alternet.org, "8 Worst Things the Far Right Wing Said This Holiday Week," followed by posts by various authors at the same site, "AlterNet's Top 10 Right Wing Jaw-Droppers of the Year."

Ms. Allon's article:

"Ignorance reigns with Geraldo Rivera, Sarah Palin, and the Wall Street Journal's longing for return to white rule.


"1. Joseph Epstein inWall Street Journal: The problem with America is the collapse of white rule.

"There just are not enough rich, white men in power in America anymore. It is a terrible problem. Instead, what we have is some sort of self-styled meritocracy, where instead of the good old-fashioned ruling elite, people who have overcome adversity and achieved success by dint of hard work and effort, rather than their lineage, are in charge. Ugghh! This must be why society is going to hell in a handbasket.

"So goes the argument of writer Joseph Epstein, who penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journallast weekend bemoaning the collapse of white rule. Not just white rule. WASP rule.

"The column, which resembles satire, but apparently is not, argues that modern-day 'corruption, scandal and incompetence' are hallmarks exclusive to this new era of non-white rule. Because that shit never happened when whites were in charge. If only, he laments, colleges still admitted more legacies and didn’t encourage applications of non-white students. Then maybe, instead of a Senate that is 95% white, we could go back to the 100%.

"And don’t even get him started about the president.

"2. Paul Ryan lectures his hero, the Pope, on capitalism.

"It seems that another conservative, Christian politician thinks he knows better than the Pope. Rep. Paul Ryan, the sham 'compassionate conservative,' who happily held the line against extending unemployment benefits for 1.3 million struggling Americans, has lately insisted that he really cares about the poor. So much so, that he now considers Pope Francis more of a role model than his previous role model, Ayn Rand—quite a shift. The deeply caring Congressman recently told the Milwaukee Sentinel how glad he is that Pope Francis is talking about the poor, and how we should all be helping each other out more, 'soul to soul.'

"But, still, despite his avowed love for the Pope, Ryan points out that the Pontiff is kind of dumb about capitalism. Not his fault, though. He’s from a non-capitalist country. 'The guy,' Ryan said. (Wait, the guy? Isn't that kind of disrespectful?), 'is from Argentina, they haven’t had real capitalism in Argentina. They have crony capitalism in Argentina. They don’t have a true free enterprise system.'

"Ryan has said that he, like the 'guy from Argentina,' wants to figure out how to solve poverty. If the past is any indication, the solution will involve plenty of discipline, deprivation of needed government help, and possibly, neckties—or as Ryan prefers to call it 'tough love.'

"Holy holy holy.

"3. Geraldo Rivera: Alec Baldwin’s comments not homophobic because everyone used to be homophobic.

"Geraldo Rivera often says things that are surprising, even startling, but he is reliably wrongheaded. He recently made the leap of comparing the dust-up over 'Duck Dynasty' star Phil Robertson’s evident homophobia and racism, stated clearly in a GQ interview, to Alec Baldwin’s troubles. The common thread, as Rivera sees it, is that this shadowy group of “gay fundamentalists”—no we don’t know exactly who that is or why those two words have been put together—is behind the loss of both men’s TV shows. You’ll remember that Baldwin, a liberal darling with either an impulse control problem or deeply held homophobic feelings (or both), was said to have called a photographer a 'cocksucking faggot' while Robertson merely speculated in his widely circulated interview that homosexuality and bestiality were on the same continuum (and blacks were happy under Jim Crow laws.)

"Rivera defended Baldwin’s right to make homophobic slurs on the grounds that they were common place when he was growing up.

"Interesting defense. Many people, unfortunately some even today, are growing up in that kind of ethos, so are they covered as well? And how far does such a defense go? Does it defend, say, racism? Any manner of hatred? Murder? Ethnic cleansing?

"Previous Rivera idiocies include saying women on George Zimmerman's trial jury would have started shooting at Trayvon Martin before George Zimmerman did, and, of course, that hoodies, such as the one Trayvon was wearing the night he was killed, are thug-wear.

"But again, can someone please tell us what the hell 'gay fundamentalism' is?

"4. Alabama Lawmaker calls ‘Duck Dynasty’ star a hero.

"So, sure enough, the 'Duck Dynasty' controversy raged on as conservatives and so-called Christians rushed to defend Phil Robertson’s right to say things that may lead to violence against gays, and blacks, or at least reinforce those lingering feelings that black people preferred their second-class status under Jim Crow. Just to recap, Robertson, the bearded, ignorant, born-again Christian star of a reality show we would never watch has been compared to everyone from Rosa Parks to Martin Luther King, Jr. (no, we cannot provide the logic of those nonsensical statements.)

"A highly enlightened Alabama state Senator by the name of Jerry Fielding added his voice to the chorus of hosannas for Phil this week when he called Robertson a 'hero.' Not content to just call him a hero, he introduced a resolution lauding him as a hero, according to the Daily Home.

"Here, in all its glory, is that proposed legislation:
"'Whereas, renown[ed] entrepreneur, Louisiana outdoorsman, and reality television star Phil Robertson has positively impacted countless lives through the powerful testimony of his steadfast faith in Jesus Christ and how it has transformed his life; and Whereas Phil Robertson, along with his family ... have served as ambassadors of the love and grace of the Heavenly Father ... Whereas recently, Phil has received backlash for expressing his personal views on homosexuality that were based on scripture in the Bible in an interview with GQ Magazine; ultimately, the Arts and Entertainment Network (A&E) punished him for his beliefs and suspended him indefinitely from the reality television show, Duck Dynasty ... Whereas a portion of the politically correct populous [sic], which strongly encourages tolerance and open-mindedness, is now contradicting themselves with extreme intolerance and close-mindedness towards Phil and his personal beliefs, which stem from his rock-solid Christian faith ... Phil should not be penalized in any way for practicing freedom of speech, but should be celebrated as a hero for courageously revealing his self-truth and Christian ideals in a world that can be unkind towards those with a conservative mind-set ... now therefore, Be it resolved by the Legislature of Alabama, both houses thereof concurring, that this chamber of persons stand united in support of Phil Robertson and his family, and in opposition to the A&E Network's deplorable action of suspending Phil indefinitely from Duck Dynasty for relaying his Christian beliefs.'
"Don’t you just love democracy!

"5. Brilliant and incisive, Bristol Palin ranks haters. LGBT community is the worst!

"On Friday, Bristol Palin, expressed her solidarity with the 'Duck Dynasty' star by taking to her Patheos blog to attack the LGBT community and condemn A&E, the network that initially kicked Phil Robertson off his reality show, then caved under pressure and reinstated him.

"'Everyone needs to leave Phil Robertson alone for expressing his beliefs,' Bristol wrote, obviously with great passion. 'I hate how the LGBT community says it's all about "love" and "equality." However, if you don't agree with their lifestyle, they spread the most hate. It is so hypocritical it makes my stomach turn.'

"Someone, please get poor Bristol an ant-acid.

"6. Sarah Palin defends Duck Dynasty star without actually reading what he said.

"You know the old saying about the apple, and the distance from which it falls from the tree. Bristol's mom Sarah, too, was outraged at how mean people were being to Phil Robertson. No, she never actually read what he said that made people upset. That’s hard. Lots of words. Small type. She’s just a staunch defender of people’s right to say racist and homophobic things and that’s what she heard he was doing.

"She has some rock solid reasoning behind not bothering to inform herself about the actual content of his statements. She knew—or heard through the grapevine, whatever—that he was invoking the Bible. That about covers it. Anyone who questions that is questioning Scripture, and those are bad, bad people. 'He was quoting the Gospel,' she told gal pal Greta Van Susteren. So people criticizing him need to take it up with the Gospel.

"Which she hasn’t actually read, probably, either. But she’s heard about it.

"7. John Hagee spreads Christmas cheer by suggesting that people who don’t like hearing ‘Merry Christmas’ get on a plane and leave the country.

"Suggesting atheists and their horrible humanist friends leave the country is one of right-wing pastor John Hagee’s favorite pieces of advice, and he got into the Christmas spirit by suggesting atheists scram again during a sermon to his congregation. It's almost like he talks to atheists more than he talks to his actual congregation.

"He told those atheists that 'if you pass a manger scene and someone is singing "Joy to the World," you can take your Walkman (yeah, Walkman in 2013) and stuff it into your ears, or you can call your lawyer, or you can just exercise your right to leave the country; planes are leaving every hour on the hour, get on one.'

"Planeloads of atheists leaving the country as we speak.

"8. Mat Staver: If gay marriage is legal then everyone will do it and society will cease to exist?

"Obviously the only thing preventing everyone from being gay and getting gayly married is the law against it. With gay marriage legal in New Mexico and Utah now and just generally havng had a watershed year, right-wing homophobes are in full panic mode.

"Liberty Counsel head Mat Staver sounded the warning this week that with full marriage equality, everyone is just going to decide to marry someone of the same sex, and that of course means that society will “cease to exist” altogether. The whole country will become a childless, disease-ridden dystopia, he told Vic Eliason of VCY America. With more and more states embracing marriage equality, we guess you can expect more of the same such pathetic fear-mongering.

"Sigh.

"h/t: rightwingwatch"

The second piece from Alternet.org:

"The right-wing's hit parade of madness and the politics of resentment.


"America's right-wing is a national embarrassment. On any given day, you can find its leaders spouting racism, pretending poverty doesn't exist, mocking the idea that climate change is a serious problem, or attempting to restrict the fundamental rights of women. Here are some of AlterNet's most popular and outrageous stories about the right from this year.

"1. Why Americans Are So Ignorant -- It's Not Only Fox News, There Are Some Understandable Reasons for It

"by Lawrence Davidson, Consortium News

"Sure propaganda, government secrecy and Fox News have a lot to do with it. But there are broader societal pressures as well. 'The majority of any population will pay little or no attention to news stories or government actions that do not appear to impact their lives or the lives of close associates,' Davidson writes. 'If something non-local happens that is brought to their attention by the media, they will passively accept government explanations and simplistic solutions.'

"2. The Most Depressing Discovery About the Brain, Ever

"by Marty Kaplan, AlterNet

"Say goodnight to the dream that education, journalism, scientific evidence, or reason can provide the tools that people need in order to make good decisions. Kaplan argues, 'It turns out that in the public realm, a lack of information isn’t the real problem. The hurdle is how our minds work, no matter how smart we think we are. We want to believe we’re rational, but reason turns out to be the ex post facto way we rationalize what our emotions already want to believe.'

"3. 10 Most Absurd Sex Tips from the Christian Right

"by Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

"Modern conservatives can't stop talking about sex. And what they say opens a window into the strange, sexist worldview of patriarchal religion. "Throughout fundamentalist Christianity, one piece of advice rings out above all others, which is that marriage only works if wives submit to their husbands," explains Marcotte.

"4. Right-Wing Group Seeks Help Rewriting the Bible Because It's Not Conservative Enough

"by Richard Schiffman, AlterNet

"The King James Bible and more recent translations are veritable primers of progressive agitprop, according to the founder of Conservapedia. Writes Schiffman, "When Jesus greets his disciples with the blessing, 'Peace be with you' (John 20, 26), the editors cleverly change the wording to, 'Peace of mind be with you,' so that nobody gets the wrong idea and thinks Jesus was some kind of lilly-livered pacifist.

"5. Shocking New Evidence Reveals Depths of 'Treason' and 'Treachery' of Watergate and Iran-Contra

"by Robert Parry, Consortium News

"New evidence continues to accumulate showing how Official Washington got key elements of two major presidential scandals of the Nixon and Reagan administrations wrong. 'Newly disclosed documents have put old evidence into a sharply different light and suggest that history has substantially miswritten the two scandals by failing to understand that they actually were sequels to earlier scandals that were far worse. Watergate and Iran-Contra were, in part at least, extensions of the original crimes, which involved dirty dealings to secure the immense power of the presidency,' Parry reports. FBI's J. Edgar Hoover's fingerprints are all over this one. 

"6. You Think You Knew Crazy? Think Again. 10 Shockers from the Increasingly Unhinged Right Wing

"by Janet Allon, AlterNet

"Nothing shuts down America's far-right lunatic fringe. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Scalia said of Lucifer this year, 'He’s a real person. Hey, c’mon, that’s standard Catholic doctrine! Every Catholic believes that.'

"7. Right-Wing Is Filled with Biblical Illiterates: They'd Be Shocked by Jesus' Teachings if They Ever Picked Up a Bible

"by CJ Werleman, AlterNet

"Jesus wouldn't have supported food stamps?

"8. 5 Christian Right Delusions and Lies About History

"by Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet

"They're not just delusional about science! Here's Marcotte relating craziness the Christian Right peddles about the founding fathers: 'For people who downright deify our Founding Fathers, the religious right is really hostile to accepting them as they actually were, which is not particularly religious, especially by the standards of their time. But David Barton, a revisionist "historian" whose name comes up again and again in these kinds of discussions, has spread the belief far and wide in the Christian right that the Founders were, in fact, fundamentalist Christians who are quite like the ones we have today. Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas confirms this, saying that Barton "provides the philosophical underpinning for a lot of the Republican effort in the country today."'

"9. 10 Outrages and Crazy Statements by Right-Wingers This Week: Pope Provokes Free-Market Freakout

"by Janet Allon, AlterNet

"The right freaked out about a compassionate pope and transgendered people, and spewed some really bizarre conspiracy theories. Allon shares how Fox Business Channel host Stuart Varney was just stewing about the pontiff’s remarks. 'Capitalism, in my opinion, is a liberator,' he lectured Pope Francis from his television pulpit. 'The free choice of millions of people is the essence of freedom. In my opinion, society benefits most when people are free to pursue their own self-interest. I know that sounds like a contradiction, but it is not.'

"10. Texas Republican Judge Switches Party, Denouncing GOP as Party of Bigots and Hate-Mongers

"by Steven Rosenfeld, AlterNet

"GOP was called out by the judge for having a culture of 'pettiness and bigotry.'"

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Hate and fear, promulgated by lies, are the hallmarks of Conservatism.  Coupled with a little racism and homophobia to attract the worst among us to their side, the criminals called "Conservatives" never shut up.

If we've learned one thing about thiscriminal cartel, it is that they are relentless in their pursuit of the New American Age of Feudalism, and they don't care how many lies it takes to rope in the more gullible and least intelligent among us.

The demographics say that the GOP's days are numbered, but until Conservatism is outlawed, we'll never hear the end of their fear mongering and hate-filled lies.

 Banning the GOP isn't enough, we must criminalize Conservatism.



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“The Republicans believe in the minimum wage — the more the minimum,
the better.”

Harry Truman.


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