Archive | Scary Crazy Wingnuts

I Cannot Tell A Lie

Oh Glenn, we can’t believe you’d mislead us like that!

During his much-ballyhooed “Restoring Honor” rally on Saturday, Glenn Beck told a whopper involving the founding father who was supposedly unable to tell a lie: George Washington.

Speechifying at the foot of the Lincoln Memorial, the controversial Fox News host highlighted the legacy of the nation’s first president to drive home his claim that encouraging honesty and integrity was a main aim of the event. Beck even told attendees that “the next George Washington” was “in this crowd. He may be 8 years old, but this is the moment. This is the moment that he dedicates his life, that he sees giants around him. And 25 years from now, he will come not to this stair, but to those stairs. And he can proclaim, ‘I have a new dream.'”

Beck also invoked Washington while describing the inspiring experience of visiting famous tourist destinations around the nation’s capital. “I have been going to Mt. Vernon,” he explained. Holding out his hands for emphasis, he declared with emotion, “I went to the National Archives, and I held the first inaugural address written in his own hand by George Washington.”

It was an eyebrow-raising revelation and certainly an original image: Beck cradling the actual words of the first president. But would the persnickety gatekeepers of the nation’s historical legacy at the National Archives allow some talk show bombthrower to put his mitts on a rare (and fragile) artifact? The answer, it turns out, is no way. Beck was not telling the truth.

Beck did receive a special VIP tour of the archives, arranged by an as-yet unidentified member of Congress. During that tour, he did get a peek inside the “legislative vault,” which isn’t open to ordinary visitors. But Archives spokeswoman Susan Cooper insists that Beck didn’t lay a finger on any precious documents, much less George Washington’s inaugural address. That would be a major violation of policy. “Those kinds of treasures are only handled by specially trained archival staff,” she explains. Cooper acknowledges that someone at the archives did show the document to Beck, but that was the extent of it. Regarding Beck’s claim that he held the document, Cooper says that seeing such documents for the first time can be a very emotional experience. “I’m certain it was a figure of speech,” she says.

I can’t believe he would lie to us. I’m so sad!

Pot, Meet Kettle

I think this is hysterical:

Politically minded actor John Cusack has picked a fight with Fox News, and both of them have dealt the “death” card from the bottom of the deck. Cusack started the war of words when he tweeted to his 209,000 followers — in all capital letters no less: “I am for a satanic death cult center at Fox News HQ and outside the offices of Dick Armey and Newt Gingrich — and all the GOP welfare freaks.”

Cusack’s tweet was a response to a follower who asked whether he supported the construction of the so-called Ground Zero Mosque. Cusack does. Vehemently.

Fox News’ response came by way of an article at by Jo Piazza, who apparently didn’t see much humor in Cusack’s sarcasm. Piazza writes a hard-news article about Cusack’s caustic tweet that even includes experts who warn that his words are dangerous. Says one expert: “His provocative tweets could easily incite a rabid fan to commit violent acts against Fox News Headquarters and others he names.” And another says: “Fans could not only be influenced because of their devotion to Cusack, the man, but also because of their love for one of the characters he plays.” Still another says: “John Cusack is taking his fame too seriously. He is having delusions and his anger toward Fox News may get him arrested!”

The Fox News reporter even goes so far as to suggest that Cusack’s behavior is kind of like that of a … serial killer?” Coincidentally, Cusack has just been signed to play Edgar Allen Poe in ‘The Raven,’ a movie about a serial killer who uses Poe’s stories as inspiration for his killing spree,” writes Piazza.

Man, I don’t even know where to begin. John Cusack, who’s known for saying silly, outrageous stuff on Twitter, makes this provocative comment and Fox News is going to lecture him on… inciting people to violence?

Of course, implying that the president stole the general election with the help of ACORN and is planning to put True Fox Patriots in FEMA camps isn’t inciting people to violence. Nope, not even a little bit!

Hey, Fox News, how about (as they say in AA) you clean up your own side of the street first?

The Backlash

Will Bunch’s new book is out today, and I highly recommend it. (And yes, I’m one of the people he thanks in the book. But I like the book anyway!)

Will is a really good reporter — and I mean that as the highest compliment. His real strength is the ability to keep digging deeper, without losing sight of the humanity of his subjects. What I love about this book is how well he unravels the thinking of the right wing and the newly-minted Tea Partiers. As I said before, it’s almost like reading a good detective novel.

You can order it here. Or you can read an excerpt in today’s Salon here.

Taibbi: Time To Boycott Fox

Matt Taibbi draws the obvious parallel between Fox News and the infamous Radio Rwanda broadcasts (something I’ve thought about myself) and wonders why we aren’t boycotting Fox:

A lot of Tea Party anger is driven by real local issues — where I live in central Jersey, for instance, there are a lot of pissed-off white people crowing over a nutty state supreme court case in which a Central American drunk driver got off because cops didn’t explain the consequences of refusing a breathalyzer in his native Spanish. But without the constant reinforcement of national 24-hour media, which has taken these isolated cases and presented them as a coast-to-coast massive conspiracy, the rage over stories like this would never reach the levels we’re seeing.

In fact if you follow Fox News and the Limbaugh/Hannity afternoon radio crew, this summer’s blowout has almost seemed like an intentional echo of the notorious Radio Rwanda broadcasts “warning” Hutus that they were about to be attacked and killed by conspiring Tutsis, broadcasts that led to massacres of Tutsis by Hutus acting in “self-defense.” A sample of some of the stuff we’ve seen and heard on the air this year:

On July 12, Glenn Beck implied that the Obama government was going to aid the New Black Panther Party in starting a race war, with the ultimate aim of killing white babies. “They want a race war. We must be peaceful people. They are going to poke, and poke, and poke, and our government is going to stand by and let them do it.” He also said that “we must take the role of Martin Luther King, because I do not believe that Martin Luther King believed in, ‘Kill all white babies.'”

CNN contributor and writer Erick Erickson, on the Panther mess: “Republican candidates nationwide should seize on this issue. The Democrats are giving a pass to radicals who advocate killing white kids in the name of racial justice and who try to block voters from the polls.”

[…] There’s nothing in the world more tired than a progressive blogger like me flipping out over the latest idiocies emanating from the Fox News crowd. But this summer’s media hate-fest is different than anything we’ve seen before. What we’re watching is a calculated campaign to demonize blacks, Mexicans, and gays and convince a plurality of economically-depressed white voters that they are under imminent legal and perhaps even physical attack by a conspiracy of leftist nonwhites. They’re telling these people that their government is illegitimate and criminal and unironically urging secession and revolution.

The Fox/Rush/Savage crowd in the last 18 months has taken the anti-Muslim fervor that launched a phony war in Iraq, carried George Bush to re-election, and pushed through the Patriot Act, and re-directed that anger at a domestic nonwhite enemy. In doing so they’ve achieved a perfect storm of political cross-purposes: they’ve almost completely succeeded in distracting the public from the real causes of their economic misfortune (i.e. Wall Street corruption), they’ve re-energized a Republican party that was devastated by eight years of Bush-era corruption and incompetence, and, as usual, they’ve made Rupert Murdoch a sh*tload of money.

I’m convinced that none of the key actors here – the Wall Street banks shrieking about government takeovers and advertising on Rick Santelli’s CNBC, the Republican Party’s career hacks who have been scheming for a new horse to ride ever since Bush imploded, and the right-wing TV and radio networks – none of these actors is pushing this crazy movement out of any real desire to stoke a race war. For these institutional leaders and patrons of the Tea Party movement, this is all about material expediency: overcoming the real threat of new financial regulations after the crash, winning elections, and making TV profits. It’s just our bad luck that driving frustrated/broke white suburbanites into a race-hatred frenzy happens to be good business for these folks. And all of this is race-baiting-for-cash is borne out of the same short-term, indifferent-to-consequence thinking that we saw from the Wall Street guys in recent years — who created mountains of deadly leverage capable of destroying the global financial system for the sake of a few one-year bonuses.

The fact that Fox and co. are doing what they do for these dreary commercial reasons makes it even worse, of course; at least Hitler really hated Jewish people. But that also means there’s a bright side. One of the few positives in this Tea Party phenomenon is that it’s shown how quickly masses of Americans can be convinced to completely change their minds about sh*t. The same Americans who six or seven years ago were looking skyward in search of poison-distributing Saddam-drones and buying duct tape and bottled water to protect themselves against imminent Muslim attack are now probably not spending five minutes a week worrying about Muslim terrorists — and instead arming themselves against the coming black-Mexican-leftist-communist state. To me that indicates that if Fox and Glenn Beck can be induced to jerk off to some perhaps similarly profitable but less toxic hate-fantasy (midgets from New Zealand are taking our jobs!), all of this – well, it maybe won’t go away, but it won’t have us steaming toward widespread racial violence like we are now.

I’m beginning to wonder why effective boycotts against these hate-media channels, and particularly Fox, haven’t been organized yet. Why not just pick out one Fox advertiser at random and make an example out of it? How about Subaru and their unintentionally comic “Love” slogan? I actually like their cars, but what the f**k? How about Pep Boys and that annoying logo of theirs? Just to prove that it can be done, I’d like to see at least one firm get blown out of business as a consequence of financially supporting the network that is telling America that its black president wants to kill white babies. Isn’t that at least the first move here? It’s beginning to strike me that sitting by and doing nothing about this madness is not a terribly responsible way to behave.

Mosque Site Fire Ruled Arson

Demonstrators and counter-demonstrators at a July 14 rally in Murfreesboro TN to protest building of a mosque.

Does anyone realistically expect that this isn’t going to get worse? Nope, it only takes one moron to start a chain reaction and the odds are in favor of increasing violence as long as we have Fox News egging people on:

Federal officials are investigating a fire that started overnight at the site of a new Islamic center in a Nashville suburb.

Ben Goodwin of the Rutherford County Sheriff’s Department confirmed to CBS Affiliate WTVF that the fire, which burned construction equipment at the future site of the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro, is being ruled as arson.

Special Agent Andy Anderson of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives told CBS News that the fire destroyed one piece of construction equipment and damaged three others. Gas was poured over the equipment to start the fire, Anderson said.

The ATF, FBI and Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office are conducting a joint investigation into the fire, Anderson said.

WTVF reports firefighters were alerted by a passerby who saw flames at the site. One large earth hauler was set on fire before the suspect or suspects left the scene.

The chair of the center’s planning committee, Essim Fathy, said he drove to the site at around 5:30 a.m. Saturday morning after he was contacted by the sheriff’s department.

“Our people and community are so worried of what else can happen,” said Fathy. “They are so scared.”

The fire was smoldering by the time Fathy and the center’s imam, Ossama Bahloul, had arrived. Fathy was told that responders had smelled gasoline near the fire.

Al Franken’s Condo Shot At

I’m hoping this was just a coincidence:

Nobody was home at the time of the incident, which was not reported until after the senator and his wife returned home to Minneapolis after a two-day trip out of town on Tuesday and discovered the damage to their window facing the street. Franken’s wife reported the incident to police.

“Right now it’s under investigation by the Minneapolis Police and the
Capitol Hill Police,” Franken spokesman Marc Kimball told POLITICO.
Kimball said that “there was some damage to one of the window panes” in
a double-paned window.

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