Republicans Launch Proxy Impeachment Proceedings Against Obama

There is a nasty streak of vengeance that runs through the Republican Party. They have been lusting for an opportunity to impeach President Obama since the day that he was inaugurated. It didn’t matter what excuse they drummed up, it could have been over anything from Fast and Furious, to the IRS, to ObamaCare, to immigration, to executive orders, to his birthplace. They even alleged that – and this is all too real – Obama was actually trying to impeach himself.

Impeach Obama

Having been denied their heart’s deepest desire, an actual reason to impeach Obama, the GOP went after administration stand-ins for the President. One of those was Lois Lerner, who was running the IRS Exempt Organizations Unit during a period when it was alleged that they were improperly targeting conservative applicants. There was never any evidence to prove the allegations, and last week the Justice Department announced that they had closed the investigation and would not be bringing any charges. They said that “We found no evidence that any IRS official acted based on political, discriminatory, corrupt, or other inappropriate motives that would support a criminal prosecution.”

In response to the DOJ’s determination, Republicans sought to lash out any convenient victim who might be available. Someone had to suffer their wrath if it wasn’t Lerner. So Jason Chaffetz (R-Wacko), chairman of the House Oversight (Overreach?) Committee, and his Republican Retributionists, have introduced a resolution to begin impeachment proceedings of IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. The resolution accuses Koskinen of making false statements under oath and failing to comply with a subpoena.

This a curious persecution considering that Koskinen had nothing to do with the alleged targeting. He didn’t became IRS Commissioner until December of 2013, three years after the Tea Party’s whining about being scrutinized for improper political activity, of which they were clearly guilty. And back in the 2010 time frame, the IRS Commissioner was Douglas Shulman, an appointee of George W. Bush. Nevertheless, Koskinen is the target of opportunity, so the GOP is spewing their venom at him. They have determined that they need a scalp and they aren’t going home without trying at least once more.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

This is just the latest in a string of partisan, expensive, and futile legislature abuse. The Republicans have already proven that they have no aptitude for governing, so they have adopted an agenda of hostility that relies on ludicrous hearings on Benghazi, Planned Parenthood, and now the impeachment of an IRS Commissioner. But make no mistake, all of these actions are thinly disguised swipes at President Obama. It is he that they wish they were impeaching, but they have even less justification for it than the phony scams they have already run. Even uber-conservative Fox News Yoda, Charles Krauthammer, is less than enthused with the GOP’s latest proxy attack on the President:

“This is not going to end well. Republicans in the Congress have shown that they have no ability to conduct successful investigations of this administration. Everything they have touched has failed or backfired, even Benghazi.”

If the Republicans go through with impeachment proceedings against Koskinen they will only embarrass themselves further. There is no case to be made against him, and their transparent animosity will reveal them for the partisan hate mongers that they are. Their visceral disgust for Obama has driven them to extremes that only make them more repugnant to the average American voter. And as much as it would be in their best interests to try to at least pretend to be sane, expect more craziness to come. They obviously can’t help themselves.

Donald Trump Is NOT Wildly Popular And Is Nothing Like Bernie Sanders

This campaign season is witnessing some of the most shallow analyses of the political landscape to ever be spun by the Perpetually Erroneous Pundit Squad. The constant repetition in the media of the non-existent dominance of Donald Trump’s phony candidacy is boxing out any rational examination of the progress of the primaries. But it is all as ephemeral as a soap bubble and just as easily burst.

Sideshow Donald Trump

Since the Fox News GOP debate, Trump’s standing in the polls has actually declined. He is still leading the other Republican contestants, but by smaller margins. And throughout what has been characterized as a phenomenon, Trump has never garnered the support of more than a small percentage of the electorate. For the most part, Trump has held a lead with about 20-25% of just the Republican voters in the polls. What most pundits fail to notice is that that means there are 75-80% of Republicans who are not supporting him. Since when is that an expression of massive, grassroots popularity? What’s more, he has consistently had the highest unfavorables of any candidate, Republican or Democratic.

The only reason that Trump is ahead of his rivals now is that there are so many of them. The sheer quantity of non-Trump candidates disperses voters so that none of them can accumulate enough support to rise above the batshit insane constituency that Trump has managed to sew up. Once the field begins to narrow, support will migrate to the stronger candidates who have the endurance to last beyond a couple of primaries. When there are only two or three other candidates they will all be beating Trump, if he is even still in the race.

The press likes to inject explanations for Trump’s fake acclaim that generally takes the position that the American people are angry and that Trump’s barbarian persona appeals to those malcontents. However, the public is no more angry than in past election cycles that have seen the rise of protest candidates like Ross Perot and Ralph Nader and, more recently, the annoying and ignorant bitchiness of the Tea Party. And like Trump, they have all failed to ignite more than the same small contingent of kvetchers. It is the same crowd who cling to the belief that Obama is the anti-Christ.

Adding to the journalistic malpractice that characterizes the Trump coverage, is the suggestion that Bernie Sanders is the progressive version of Trump. What unadulterated bull. Trump actually is an angry, visionless loudmouth who attracts the blind devotion of the dimwitted rabble who are equally irate. Sanders, on the other hand, isn’t angry, he’s passionate. He is offering a positive agenda of detailed policy proposals on the economy, social justice, foreign affairs, the environment, Social Security, and health care. That’s the difference between Sanders, an affirmative reformer, and Trump, an opportunistic blowhard. And Sanders has also proven that he has the sort of broad-based support that Trump has never been able to muster, even after receiving millions of dollars worth of free airtime on Fox News. In recent polls Sanders is beating Trump head-to-head by twenty points.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

The foregoing notwithstanding, we can expect the media to continue their pitifully hollow presentations of current events. The question is whether they are doing it because they are too lame to figure out the obvious reasons for what is unfolding, or because they are addicted to the ratings they enjoy when they play along with the hype of a celebrity candidacy. If they were honest they would just start pushing for a “Draft Kim Kardashian” movement and quit pretending that Trump’s campaign is anything different.

Bill O’Reilly Must Be Terribly Disappointed The Lafayette Theater Shooter Isn’t Mexican

It is getting more difficult every day to dismiss the epidemic of gun violence that has gripped our nation. The past few weeks has seen a racist in South Carolina massacre nine churchgoers, a young Muslim in Chattanooga mow down five American soldiers, an undocumented immigrant shoot a woman strolling on a pier, and a crazed “drifter” go on a rampage in a Louisiana movie theater.

While each of these incidents were unarguably tragic, only one of them produced a fervent call to action by knee-jerk conservatives. After Kate Steinle was killed in San Francisco, the right-wing outrage machine cranked up to eleven. There were immediate allegations that the crime was wholly attributable to the city’s so-called “sanctuary city” laws and the fact that the perpetrator was an undocumented immigrant.

Pundits primed with prejudice whipped up xenophobic fury despite the fact that the crime could just as well have been committed by a native-born citizen without changing a single one of the circumstances. Politicians wasted no time in drafting bills to punish cities with progressive laws (that are favored by law enforcement), and mandating harsh sentences for repeat immigration violations.

For some reason, none of the panic stricken conservatives bellowing about the awful fate of Ms. Steinle were able to recognize the one thing that all of these incidents had in common: Someone who ought not to have had access to a gun was able to acquire one of more of them and forever destroy the lives of some innocent people.

Fox News Bill O'Reilly

Chief among these carping cretins was, as usual, Bill O’Reilly. In a matter of hours he was pontificating on the horrors of alien invaders pillaging our defenseless womenfolk. He started an online petition to gather support for something he called “Kate’s Law” to increase the penalties for immigration violations. His entire spiel was based on the assertion that the only reason Steinle was killed was because of lax border security.

The sad truth is that people like Steinle are killed every day under similar circumstances by American citizens. But this fact is an inconvenient distraction for O’Reilly who is intent on blaming a population of immigrants, most of whom are peaceful people who are merely trying to find ways to care for their families.

However, when the perpetrator turns out to be a white, Tea Party wingnut, O’Reilly can’t seem to muster up a public response to address the situation. There are no petitions or hastily drawn up bills, or wild accusations or vein-bursting rants. In fact, Reilly doesn’t even bother to acknowledge that the Lafayette suspect, John Russel Houser, is an Obama-hating supporter of the Westboro Baptist nut cases and a card-carrying member of the Tea Party Nation. And despite his long history of offensive postings on Internet discussion sites, O’Reilly never connects the dots to associate him with the network of violent domestic terrorists.

Houser was previously denied a permit to purchase a gun and he has a history of mental illness. His ex-wife had secured a restraining order to protect her from his “extreme erratic behavior.” Nevertheless, he managed to acquire an arsenal and shoot up a theater, killing two innocent women and injuring several others. But as far as O’Reilly is concerned, it’s just too bad that he wasn’t an illegal alien from Mexico so there could be a lynching party formed to march up to the castle with torches and pitchforks.

All of the evidence shows that right-wing domestic terrorists pose a far greater threat to Americans than the much-hyped ISIS brand. Sovereign citizens, Klan groups, militias, and extremist Christianists have been responsible for many more deaths and injuries than the fabled Islamic sleeper cells. But even after Tea Party disciples of Cliven Bundy’s Nevada ranch gang murdered two Las Vegas police officers, there was no call to action by O’Reilly or his conservative colleagues.

President Obama lamented today that he was “distressed” about not having been able to do something about gun safety during his term in office. He told the BBC that…

“If you look at the number of Americans killed since 9/11 by terrorism, it’s less than 100. If you look at the number that have been killed by gun violence, it’s in the tens of thousands,”

And throughout the last seven years, as throughout the last seventy, it is the right-wing, NRA fearing, Republican Party that has stood in the way common sense solutions. As noted above, the one thing that all of the tragedies that are occurring in ever more rapid succession have in common is the use of deadly weapons that have no practical purpose other than killing human beings.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Until we solve the problem of these weapons being so easily accessible to people with hostile intentions, there will be more tragedies and more grieving survivors. And, no doubt, more pathetic excuses from grand-standers like O’Reilly who search desperately for vulnerable victims unto whom he can shift the blame.

Respecting Police Fox News Style: Pool Party Kids vs. Tea Party Militia

The relentless punditry being applied to the McKinney pool party by less than credible media commentators has produced a flood of useless blathering that contributes nothing toward understanding the situation. And leading the pack as, as usual, is “doctor” Keith Ablow, the disgraced Fox News “psycho” analyst best known for diagnosing President Obama as an anti-American sociopath.

On yesterday’s episode of Fox & Friends (video below), Ablow chimed in on the McKinney affair with his familiar fetish for finding the President at fault for everything from the Kennedy assassination to diaper rash. He also exhibited his famous hate-focused tunnel-blindness that stretches the boundaries of hypocrisy to new extremes. This exchange with fellow defamer Elisabeth Hasselbeck covered well-worn territory for the Fox irregulars.

Hasselbeck: What is the mentalitiy a cop needs in a situation like this and why are so many people quick to reject authority right now?
Ablow: I think that some leaders in America have fractured the trust that Americans placed, properly, in police officers […] I don’t think our president or our former attorney general did anything to help people out when they seemed to side with folks other than the police or, for that matter, the mayor of New York. So, these messages are very powerful. And they’re heard by young people who may think of it as a cause celebre to sort of resist police officers when the right thing to do is…do as you’re told.

So it’s “some leaders in America,” specifically President Obama, who are responsible for fracturing the trust placed in police officers. It wouldn’t be the police officers who have murdered unarmed kids or brutalized peaceful citizens who made trusting law enforcement so difficult, would it? And if an enraged cop drags you by your hair and orders you to put your face in the grass, just do as you’re told. If only our leaders excused and supported such violent tactics by militarized police departments, there wouldn’t be any problem at all.

Ablow’s assertion that the President, or any other national figure, is advocating disrespect for the police is a figment of his perverted imagination. Most rational observers would hold that siding with folks other than police who act criminally IS siding with the police. It’s siding with the majority of officers whose reputation is shredded by the bad apples. But Ablow’s opinion that there is a breakdown in the social compact between citizens and the police is shared by his colleagues at Fox. For instance…

Charles Krauthammer: The only consequence of this is to undermine the police, it’s to undermine their respect for the police, and it’s essentially to undermine law and order.

O’Reilly: It’s clear that there is a growing disrespect for police officers in some American neighborhoods and that attitude is going to lead to violence. If citizens don’t obey the police then law and order completely breaks down.

Fox News

What makes these remarks all the more absurd is the inference that victims of excessive force by the police are themselves responsible for their injuries (or deaths). All they had to do was obediently comply with the abusive cops and they would have been fine. After all, it’s just a matter of respect for authority. The kind of respect that Cliven Bundy and his Tea Party terrorists showed when the authorities arrived to enforce the law and prevent him from continuing to unlawfully graze his cattle on land that did not belong to him.

For some reason, conservatives, and pundits at Fox News, considered Bundy a hero for defying law enforcement. Bundy’s Tea Party Militia came armed to the teeth and threatened to blow away any dirty copper that tried to make Bundy obey the same laws to which every other American is subject. Maybe if the teenagers at the pool party waved American flags, pointed automatic weapons at the police, and threatened to kill them, their respect would have been more appreciated by the “patriots” on Fox News.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Ted Cruz Goes There: There is A Liberal Fascism That Is Going After Christian Believers

What is it about the extremist wing of the GOP/Tea Party that makes it so compelling to compare their ideological adversaries to Hitler? They can’t seem to have a civil debate about issues with which they disagree without sinking to the most offensive depictions imaginable. And while often this behavior is confined to fringe groups and nut cases, it frequently surfaces among the right’s leaders.

Ted Cruz

This weekend Ted Cruz spoke at the Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition meeting and demonstrated just how repulsive the Republican establishment has become. His speech contained allegations that Democrats have “decided there is no room for Christians in today’s Democratic Party.” That may come as a surprise to the tens of millions of devoutly Christian Democrats, including pastors, priests, parishioners, and of course, President Obama (whom the wingnut contingent still thinks is a gay Muslim from Kenya). But that insult to the Christians that Cruz, in his self-appointed ass-holiness, has decided are illegitimate, apparently didn’t go far enough to viciously malign his allegedly fellow believers.

Cruz: There is a liberal fascism that is going after Christian believers. It is heartbreaking, but it is so extreme, it is waking people up. […] Today’s Democratic Party has become so radicalized for legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states that there is no longer any room for religious liberty.

According to Cruz, Democrats are analogous to the Nazi regime that slaughtered millions of innocents and sought to take over much of the civilized world. To Cruz the act of standing up for the rights of all Americans, and opposing the rankest form of discrimination, is no different than torturing and murdering people who were themselves victims of discrimination.

The form of “religious liberty” that Cruz advocates is one that permits people to freely exercise their prejudices in contradiction of the founding principles of this nation that declared that we are all created equal. Cruz would have the nation embrace a practice that makes some more equal than others. He claims to base his hateful opinions on his own warped view of America’s origin.

Cruz: We were founded by men and women fleeing religious persecution. We need leaders who will stand unapologetically in defense of the Judeo-Christian values upon which America was built.”

The absurdity of this statement lies in the fact that Cruz is at once heralding our forebears for having the courage to renounce the bigotry of the British religious tyranny, and in the next breath asserts his own demand for a religious tyranny that he happens to favor. It is a symptom of religious arrogance and supremacy that demeans all who do not submit to his beliefs.

Cruz is also demonstrating his pitifully weak grasp of the Constitution and America’s legal system. While it is true that Democrats as a party are more accepting of marriage equality, it is not the party that is broadening the civil rights of LGBT people. It is the courts who are acting on the principles of the Constitution, you know, the ones that Cruz and his hate mongering zealots profess to cherish.

Cruz and other like-minded bigots argue that civil liberties should be voted on and the majority gets their way. But that has never been the manner by which civil rights have been preserved. If it had been, African-Americans would have been voted against and segregation might still be in effect today. Thankfully, the courts decided that civil liberties may not be subject to public opinion.

However, in Cruz’a world it is permissible to suppress people if a majority says to do so. And if you don’t like that then you are a fascist with designs on genocide. Since Cruz is a member in good standing of the Republican Party, and a leading candidate for their nomination for president, the rest of the GOP field should be asked whether they agree with his condemnation of Democrats. Do they also regard their political foes as equivalent to those responsible for the Holocaust?

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Ironically, it is Cruz’s view that has more in common with the repugnant politics that result in discrimination and oppression. Yet he has managed to convince himself that his prejudices are admirable defenses of liberty. That’s a sort of self-delusion that is far too common among right-wing politicos, and even worse, among the many deluded citizens they have fooled into following them.

Uh Oh: Jeb Bush Proposes Federally Mandated ‘Death Panels’

At a campaign stop in Manchester, New Hampshire, prospective GOP presidential candidate and successor to the Bush dynasty, Brother Jeb came forward to praise his own actions as Florida governor during a controversy that involved a woman in a persistent vegetative state. Terri Schiavo had suffered irreversible brain-damage and was being kept alive by machines against the wishes of her husband and, according to him, herself.

The torturous spectacle that Bush engineered included multiple court challenges and even signing a law giving him, personally, the right to decide Schiavo’s fate. Somehow that didn’t offend his Republican principles against Big Government. That law was later ruled to be unconstitutional, and after months of emotionally brutal wrangling in the courts and the media, Schiavo was mercifully allowed to die.

Today Bush still thinks he did the right thing and says that “I don’t think I would change anything.” However, he went on to express what he said was his one regret:

“In hindsight, the one thing that I would have loved to have seen was an advance directive where the family would have sorted this out […] I think if we’re going to mandate anything from government, it might be that if you’re going to take Medicare, you also sign up for an advance directive where you talk about this before you’re so disabled.”

Jeb Bush Death Panels

Yikes! What Bush is talking about are the dreaded “Death Panels” that Sarah Palin made famous in her blitheringly stupid criticism of the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare). Advance Directives are nothing more than voluntary statements that inform doctors and family members as to the wishes of a patient in the event that they are unable to speak for themselves. Palin turned this into a surreal debate over the wholly imaginary prospect of the government deciding who will live or die. For that she was awarded the PolitiFact “Lie of the Year” honors for 2009.

Having been subjected to devastating ridicule did nothing to temper Palin’s dumbfuckery. She continues to believe in the Death Panel myth that she was so instrumental in creating (although she has shifted her ire toward the Independent Payment Advisory Board, a group of health care professionals who insure best practices in medical care and fair pricing, which she now calls Death Panels). When Palin gets wind of Bush’s endorsement of Advanced Directives there is likely to be an earthquake in the Tea Party precincts that still admire her vacuous ramblings.

As for Bush, there is reason to be positive about his support for such a common sense initiative that gives people more control over their own lives. However, he may have taken it a step too far. The suggestion that Advanced Directives be mandatory seems like the sort of government intrusion that Republicans usually rail against. While a Living Will is advisable for most people, forcing them to prepare one when they may not be ready to make all of the profound decisions involved is way too strict a requirement.

What’s more, Bush is only proposing mandated Advance Directives for Medicare recipients. Why is he discriminating against just that sector of the population? Why not make it mandatory for anyone with a health insurance policy, whether public or private? As usual, the Republican solution to any problem is to put the burden on those who are already on society’s lower financial rungs. It’s why they advocate mandatory drug testing for welfare recipients, but not for doctors or lawyers or politicians, who hold people’s lives in their hands. It’s why states like Kansas are currently trying to dictate how food stamp recipients can spend their benefits, but there are never similar dictates on how wealthy recipients of government subsidies can spend their benefits.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

If you’re poor in America the government can tell you what to do and how to live. If your rich, anything goes, even if you still get benefits from the government, including tax breaks that contribute to your wealth. That’s the Republican philosophy. And then they will condemn anyone who proposes a policy that permits the government to control any part of a citizen’s life. Unless, of course, it has to with a woman’s control over own body, a patient’s desire for medicinal marijuana, or anyone who wishes to be free from mandated exposure to Christianity.

In short, the GOP Doctrine of Acceptable Hypocrisy requires that any regulation of the rich be condemned as an intolerable intrusion by Big Government. But similar regulations of the poor are necessary controls on irresponsible, and probably criminal, moochers.

Tea Party Yahoo Takes Steps Toward Impeachment Of President Obama

In the months prior to the 2014 mid-term election, numerous Republican politicians and pundits openly lusted for an opportunity to impeach President Obama for imagined offenses that they could never actually make stick. The absence of evidence, however, did not stop the parade of pitchfork wielding wackos demanding that the popularly elected president be ousted.

Mars Impeaches

And it wasn’t just the usual kooks from the fringe contingent who were flinging charges around. The White House gate-crashers included congressional members like representatives Steven Scalise, Jason Chaffetz, Louie Gohmert, Michele Bachmann, Darrell Issa, and senators James Inhofe, Jon Kyl, and Tom Coburn. Of course, the kook brigade would not sit on the sidelines either. Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and a flurry of Fox News figures like Sean Hannity, Andrew Napolitano, Todd Starnes, Allen West, and Dick Morris were all over this.

Despite this surge of aspiring impeachers, some on the right pretended that there was no such movement. GOP House Speaker John Boehenr said that the whole thing was a scam cooked up by Democrats and Obama, who actually wanted to impeach himself. Fox’s Megyn Kelly struggled to advance the notion that the controversy was a fake by citing a poll that showed that 61% of Americans were opposed to impeachment. Of course they were. But what she declined to reveal was that the same poll showed that 56% of Republicans favored it, along with 68% of Tea Partiers.

Today we have learned that the predictions that Republicans would seek impeachment if they were successful in winning control of the Senate last November, were true. Florida representative Ted Yoho (R-Tea Party) has drafted legislation that purports to define the meaning of “high crimes and misdemeanors” as referenced in the constitutional clause granting the power of impeachment to the House of Representatives. His definition just happens to include every political argument against Obama that the right has been making in their impeachment crusade. What a coincidence.

Aside from being an obvious attempt to shape a new law aimed directly at the President, the bill reads like the work of brain-damaged dimwit on acid-laced meth. In his enumeration of “Whereases” he even includes one that obviates the need for the bill at all:

“Whereas impeachable “high crimes and misdemeanors” has an objective meaning based on the intent of the Constitution’s framers and British impeachment precedents”

If the legal standard already has an objective meaning, then what is the purpose of this bill? That question is answered in the next section of the bill that lists the “impeachable offenses.” To be sure, there are some unsavory crimes listed that ought to result in serious consequences for any executive. However, there is also a familiarity about them that seems to apply to just the complaints that wingnuts have about the current president. And then there are also a couple of political items that could never be adjudicated as impeachable.

However, the problem with this list is not whether the items on it are good or bad. It’s that they are there at all. By composing a list that purports to identify all of the actions that can result in impeachment, there is an infinite number of actions that could not be grounds for impeachment because they aren’t on the list. It’s a rookie legislative mistake.

Richard Nixon could not have been impeached if this list were in effect during his presidency. It also doesn’t provide a path to impeaching a president who embezzles a billion dollars and deposits it in a Swiss bank account. It doesn’t cover a president who breaks the legs of a governor who doesn’t support his agenda. A president could sell arms to Iran and use the proceeds to bankroll terrorists in Nicaragua without violating this law (Reagan would have signed it with glee).

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

That’s the problem with explicitly enumerating the actions that would trigger the law. And since “high crimes and misdemeanors” already has an objective meaning, there is no reason to make such a list. It is the responsibility of the House of Representatives to file articles of impeachment, make a reasoned argument for them, and pass it on to the senate for trial.

If the House gives this bill serious consideration, they will only be solidifying their reputation as baldly political creatures with contempt for the law. Therefore, don’t be too surprised if they pass it. Their hunger for punishing this President is still palpable. It is a fever that they cannot suppress. And impeachment is clearly still on their diseased minds.

Freakout At Fox News: DHS Report Cites Threat Of Right-Wing Extremists

There is nothing that stirs up the rancid juices of a conservative sociopath like being fingered as a conservative sociopath. It’s very much the same furious reaction that racists have when you point out that they’re being racist. And this week the American Taliban got their feathers ruffled again by the Department of Homeland Security’s “intelligence assessment” that reportedly “focuses on the domestic terror threat from right-wing sovereign citizen extremists.”

Fox News

Please click here to SHARE this On Facebook

The release of this report predictably ignited a temper tantrum by the hypersensitive rage-meisters at Fox News. They immediately slammed the report as being offensive to the totally rational, peace-loving, icons of harmony that populate the Tea Party and other rightist models of national unity. Why ever would they be regarded as potentially dangerous just because they brag about their arsenals while holding signs that say “We came unarmed – this time.”

Never mind that the report documents a couple of dozen instances of criminal violence by wingnuts in the mold of Timothy McVeigh and Eric Rudolph. And set aside the fact that state and local law enforcement officers, when surveyed last year, cited “sovereign citizen terrorists” as the top domestic terror threat ahead of foreign Islamic jihadis. That’s an understandable and thoroughly logical conclusion coming from the first responders who are often the targets of the anti-government right-wingers. Just ask the families of the two Las Vegas police officers who were murdered by followers of Cliven Bundy, the deadbeat rancher who assembled a brigade of armed protesters to do battle with agents from the Bureau of Land Management.

The zealousness with which Fox News defends violent American jihadis who hate the government (particularly since that black guy was elected) is evidence of their support for extremists, so long as they are extreme in the proper fashion. This response to a perfectly reasonable law enforcement analysis only validates the politicization of national security that Fox engages in. At Fox News they don’t care if a heavily armed NRA “patriot” is parading around the Wal-Mart with assault weapons. But if a black kid with an iced tea and a bag of Skittles is gunned down by a self-appointed vigilante while walking home, then Fox portrays him as a thug who must have been up to no good.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

What makes this outburst of outrage even more ludicrous is that the DHS is only doing its job of protecting the American people. They are not playing favorites by drawing attention to extremists on the right. The proof of that is that the feds previously published a report that warned of the potential dangers of left-wing extremists. News Corpse wrote about this six years ago, the last time that Fox News and other wingnut media mouthpieces went bonkers over a DHS report. That article contained a link to a security analysis that said…

“Left-wing extremism is ‘alive and well’ both in the US and internationally. … There are individuals and organizations within the U.S. who maintain the same ideology that resulted in the growth of left-wing terrorism in this country in the 1970s and 1980s … and new leaders and groups are emerging.”

Good luck trying to find any reporting on Fox News about that study. While there are a few mentions of left-wing extremism on Fox, they are conspicuously thin and refer primarily to animal rights activists and environmentalists – a scary bunch of bloodthirsty hooligans if there ever were any.

The Queen Of Astroturf Doesn’t Know The Meaning Of Astroturf

When Sharyl Attkisson left CBS over her flagrant insertion of conservative political bias into the stories she covered, she might have tried to rehabilitate her decaying reputation by affiliating herself with a credible news organization. Instead, she immediately signed up with Fox News (not exactly the place to prove your aren’t shilling for the right) and took a position with the The Daily Signal, the pseudo-news Internet outlet run by the ultra-rightist Heritage Foundation.

Media Circus

Please click here to SHARE this On Facebook

Her post-CBS work has mainly been limited to three areas of shameless whining: 1) Bashing those in her past that she felt had discriminated against her freedom to propagandize; 2) Promoting her anti-Obama diatribe “Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation, and Harassment in Obama’s Washington;” and 3) Telling paranoid (and ultimately debunked) tales of being spied on by shadowy, unnamed enemies in the government determined to destroy her professionally and personally.

Continuing her transparently prejudiced crusade against a select group of imagined adversaries, Attkisson has published her list of “The Top 10 Astroturfers.” In the process she has demonstrated that she is viscerally determined to persist in slandering her perceived foes. What’s more, she is proving that she doesn’t have any idea what Astroturfing is. For the record, here is the generally recognized definition of this neologism:

Astroturf: An apparently grassroots-based citizen group or coalition that is primarily conceived, created and/or funded by corporations, industry trade associations, political interests or public relations firms. It seeks to disguise a powerful special interest as a popular movement.

On that basis, here is Attkisson’s list:

  1. Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and Everytown
  2. Media Matters for America
  3. University of California Hastings Professor Dorit Rubenstein Reiss and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Dr. Paul Offit
  4. “Science” Blogs such as:,, (Respectful Insolence), and
  5. Mother Jones
  6. and
  7. White House press briefings and press secretary Josh Earnest
  8. Daily Kos and The Huffington Post
  9. CNN, NBC, New York Times, Politico and Talking Points Memo (TPM)
  10. MSNBC,, Los Angeles Times and Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times, MSNBC and Jon Stewart.

There is not a single group on the list that meets the definition of an Astroturf enterprise. The one that comes closest is Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense due to its relationship with another group founded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. However, MDA was started by an actual mom in Indiana and has a membership of more than 150,000. The rest of the list is patently absurd.

Media Matters is a watchdog group that documents conservative bias in the media. It does not lobby any government entity, organize citizens to demonstrate, or otherwise engage in social activism. However, it is one of Attkisson’s most effective critics and thus won the number two slot on the list.

The U.C. professor and Children’s Hospital have worked on educating the public about the importance of vaccinations. Apparently that has stirred Attkisson’s ire. Also in this category are a few science-related blogs. However, Attkisson doesn’t explain why they should be on the list other than because they have a point of view. She never even bothers to try to connect them to some well-heeled benefactor. In any case, universities, hospitals, and independent blogs are not Astroturfers by any stretch of the imagination.

The most well-represented group on the list are media enterprises. They range from mainstream outlets like CNN, NBC, and the New York Times, to established magazines and Internet sites like Mother Jones, Salon, and Politico, to more alternative sources like Daily Kos, and the Huffington Post. The only conceivable reason for Attkisson citing these media players on her list is that they are all regarded by conservatives like herself as left-leaning, and therefore deserving of her wrath. But they are certainly not Astroturf.

Attkisson really goes off the rails by including the White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest and the Daily Show’s Jon Stewart on the list. How can anyone define either of them as faux grassroots-based citizen groups backed by wealthy special interests? More than any other people or groups on the list, these two show that Attkisson cannot be taken seriously.

Attkisson describes her list as “an informal, non-scientific survey.” Her footnote reveals that “the results represent 169 Twitter respondents who answered a public query either directly or through direct message.” What could possibly be more ludicrous as a sampling of opinion than a tiny group of respondents to her own Tweet? Is Atkisson purposely sabotaging her reputation in a public spectacle of professional suicide? The remainder of her commentary accompanying the list essentially redefines Astroturfing to fit her personal enemies list. It’s like dieters defining cupcakes as vegetables so they can eat more of them.

If she wants some examples of bona fide Astroturfers, she need look no further than her employer the Heritage Foundation, which began as a right-wing think tank, but with new leadership provided by former Republican senator Jim DeMint, it has become a full-fledged factory for fake activism. Under DeMint’s tenure it launched the Daily Signal which publishes highly biased articles including those by its new correspondent, Sharyl Attkisson.

Other Astroturfers include the Tea Party Express, which was founded by a Republican public relations firm and is notorious for funneling nearly all of the donations it receives back into its own pockets. Karl Rove’s American Crossroads. Numerous Koch brothers funded entities like Americans for Prosperity, FreedomWorks, Generation Opportunity, The LIBRE Initiative, Concerned Veterans for America, and many more. Even Sarah Palin has joined the con game with her Super PAC and the subscription Internet site she launched that often has no content for days on end. In all of these cases there is little evidence of public support, but massive bankrolling by wealthy conservative rainmakers.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

A recent study by a conservative news organization highlighted the rampant corruption in many of the right-wing Astroturf enterprises and political action committees. The Washington Post reported that…

“Right Wing News released a report on a group of conservative PACs that took in millions of dollars in contributions in 2014, ostensibly for the purpose of electing Republicans, but spent almost none of it on actual political activity. Instead, the money went into the pockets of the people who run the PACs and their associates.”

This appears to be the rule, and not the exception. And part of why it becomes so easy to rip-off the ignorant wingnut community is that fakers like Attkisson permit the scams to proceed without consequence. By shining her spotlight on an array of organizations that in no way qualify as Astroturf, Attkisson allows the grifters to operate freely while their victims are lost in a maze of false accusations.

What Does North Korea, Fox News, And The Tea Party Have In Common?

The still unfolding saga of the hacking into Sony’s network has produced a war of words between American intelligence agencies that accuse North Korea of the intrusion, and the North Koreans who applaud the act but insist they had nothing to do with it. After declining to release the film “The Interview” that was ostensibly what incited the hacking, Sony reversed themselves and put the movie out in theaters and online. This further inflamed North Korea who lashed out with an openly racist attack on President Obama saying…

“Obama always goes reckless in words and deeds like a monkey in a tropical forest.”

Comparing the first African-American president of the United States to a monkey was surely not an accidental slip of the tongue. It was a deliberate, if juvenile, attempt to demean and ridicule Obama. However, the repugnant and racist monkey reference is nothing new to Obama haters in America. The juvenile Tea Party has been rife with offensive images and signs at their rallies that made the very same association.

Tea Party Korea Monkey

As if to emphasize the contemptuous disdain for Obama, the folks at Fox News posted an item on their community website, Fox Nation, about North Korea’s slur. This set off a sadly predictable flurry of hate speech by their readers that brings into focus the ideological camaraderie between America’s enemies and its own extremist right-wingers.

Get the ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Fox Nation Comments

When Vladimir Putin was criticizing Obama over the Ukraine situation, many Fox News pundits and contributors (including Sarah Palin, Tucker Carlson and Ben Carson) responding by virtually nominating him as the Republican presidential candidate. All it takes to win the hearts and minds of Teabaggers is to insult America’s president. So I guess it won’t be long now until they add Kim Jong-Un to the ticket.