Trevor Noah’s Daily Show Debut Produces Huge Sighs Of Comic Relief

It’s been nearly three months since Jon Stewart signed off of the Daily Show for the last time, and the void he left has been felt by millions of satire-starved fans. While Larry Wilmore’s Nightly Show has tried to fill that void, and Stephen Colbert’s new Late Night show launched a couple of weeks ago, the sustained satirical presence of the Daily Show has not been reproduced by any of the other late night comedy offerings.

Consequently, the anticipation for Noah’s premiere was at fever pitch when the show finally came to the air last night. And everyone, fans and critics, were bristling with suspense as to how he would perform, and whether he would make a suitable successor to Stewart.

Trevor Noah

Well, the best indication of success is wrapped up in the loathing of one of Stewart’s most notorious and mush-headed critics. John Nolte of Breitbart News said that “Awkward Trevor Noah Bombs In Debut.” And with that we know that Noah can be proud of his maiden outing. If the Breitbrats hated it, you know you’re on the right track. Not to dwell on the ravings of a knee-jerk …er… jerk, Nolte’s critique consisted mainly of childish insults and ignorance:

“For all of Stewart’s fascist, bullying tendencies, he did possess some talent. Noah is undoubtedly talented enough to land this gig, but he is unquestionably in over his head. Noah might grow into the gig. He might not. It won’t matter. He is politically correct and a left-wing extremist. […]

“Although fewer than 1% of the population ever watched Stewart, the media still managed to turn him into a Potemkin Phenom. When you’re a leftist, talent and popularity are not required.”

Isn’t that sweet? Nolte thinks Stewart was a talented fascist. That will undoubtedly make Stewart’s day. However, Nolte’s long-standing and inbred hatred for the Daily Show makes it impossible for him to express a coherent opinion. He even admits that “it won’t matter” if Noah is any good, because he’s a “politically correct left-wing extremist,” and therefore deserving of failure. It’s also rather amusing that Nolte condemns the influence of the program because fewer than 1% of the population watched it. He’s not far off, but what he doesn’t mention is that the Daily Show had more viewers than most of the shows on Fox News. So apparently Nolte also regards Fox as talentless and unpopular.

For the record, the Breitbrats predicted the failure of the new Daily Show months ago with a hilariously stupid article that only affirmed that they are as terrible at analyzing television and comedy as they are at analyzing politics.

As for Noah, his debut was a respectable effort with many hilarious moments. It will take some time for him to fully come into his own, but he is obviously smart and funny and is using the show’s producers and writers (held over from the Stewart regime) effectively to maintain a smooth transition. The opening segment (video below) was a perfect introduction that established an emotional connection to the audience saying that he is just as nervous as they are. He revealed a little personal information that explained how he felt about his new role:

“Growing up in the dusty streets of South Africa, I never dreamed one day I would have two things — an indoor toilet and a job as host of ‘The Daily Show.’ And now I have both. I’m quite comfortable with one of them.”

And with that he thanked the audience for “joining us as we continue the war on bullshit.” That, of course, was a reference to Stewart’s last monologue, and a neat trick to assure the audience that he had the same aspirations to produce the sort of quality satire that acts as a much-needed release mechanism for those of us who are outraged daily by the foolishness and dishonesty of our political and pundit classes. He’s off to a great start.

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

Boycott Trump: The Donald Declares A War On Latinos That He Can’t Possibly Win

Well, there can be no more doubt about. Donald Trump is the most pathetic ignoramus in the Republican Presidential Clown Car Primary. If it wasn’t bad enough that his laughably embarrassing announcement speech was riddled with falsehoods, or he claims to have a foolproof plan that will “bring ISIS to the table or, beyond that, defeat ISIS very quickly,” but he refuses to say what it is, he is now launching a trade war against Latinos, the fastest growing demographic in the American electorate.

Boycott Donald Trump

The war was instigated after Trump insulted Mexican immigrants by saying that “they’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” And although he probably thinks that he was being complimentary with his appended assumption, it certainly wasn’t taken that way by those he was insulting. Subsequent to his remarks, the Spanish-language TV network, Univision, announced that they would no longer partner with Trump on his Miss USA Pageant, and would cease all business relationships with Trump.

Univision was not alone in condemning Trump. Many other Latino celebrities, executives, and politicians cited Trump’s vile comments and pledged to avoid associations with him. In one instance that crossed the line of civility, a Univision exec retweeted a photo juxtaposing Trump with Charleston killer, Dylann Roof. The Tweet was quickly deleted despite the obvious similarities in appearance and expression. But not before the poor attempt at humor pierced The Donald’s thin skin.

The war, now raging, saw Trump escalate to threats of lawsuits against Univision. But even more frightening, Trump declared that Univision execs would not be permitted on Trump’s golf courses. That’s a pleasant bit of imagery. Trump is now running restricted country clubs that prohibit Latinos. Somehow, I don’t think that any of them are losing any sleep over not being able to play on Trump’s lawn.

Perhaps the most absurd volley in this battle is Trump’s attempt to get the Republican National Committee to cancel the GOP presidential primary debate on Univision. It’s absurdity rests on the fact that Univision is not scheduled to be hosting a debate, and was explicitly snubbed when the RNC put together their debate plans. RNC Chair Reince Priebus called Univision “a long-term enemy of the Republican Party.” Instead, the RNC went with the number two Spanish-language network, Telemundo, which has half the viewers of Univision and is owned by the GOP-friendly (?) NBC network. So Trump’s temper tantrum to terminate Univision is just another figment of his dementia.

Not surprisingly, Trump has gotten some support from the Wingnut Echo Chamber. One of those digging deep to defend him, Breitbart News, leaped face first into the dump Univision shallow end. An article by their editor, John Nolte, began by agreeing with Trump’s insult to Mexicans saying that “What Donald Trump said about illegal aliens and rape and crime was not untrue.” So Nolte is also a racist who believes that there are eleven million Mexican criminals and rapists in America. As for the Univision debate, Nolte agrees that the broadcast should be removed from the schedule that it already isn’t on. But his brilliant alternative is to have the fictional debate moved to Fox’s Spanish-language network, MundoFox. Nolte apparently thinks that the MundoFox audience of about 170,000 is a better platform for the GOP Comedy Hour than Univision’s 2.1 million (more than ten times greater).

With Trump banishing Univision from his country clubs and trying to get his party to nix a debate that doesn’t exist, he is begging for retaliation. This is something that he would surely regret if Latinos en masse responded by ditching the Trump brand. They could all boycott his golf courses, and his hotels as well. They could refuse to buy his ties, cologne, or other cheesy consumer goods. That includes the Trump line at Macy’s (who should also feel the heat of partnering with a racist). They could shun his real estate properties. And this economic backlash could extend to anyone who is repulsed by Trump’s overt racism. Asians, Saudis, Europeans, and American consumers can and should withhold patronage from him on the basis of his prejudice. And if he thinks he can prevail by blackballing all of them from his golf course, then his reality blind-spot is even bigger than his ego (and that may not be possible according to the laws of physics).

[Update 6/29/15: NBC has announced that they have cut all business ties with Trump. This includes the Apprentice programs and the pageant broadcasts. And while Univision is not a debate host, NBC’s Telumundo is. Will Trump now lobby the RNC to cancel that debate? Stay tuned]

Donald has always been a fraud who is more adept at promoting himself than any business venture. For a sampling of his tendency to fail, take a look at these 12 Donald Trump businesses that no longer exist. There is a reason he embarrasses himself by hosting a TV game show. Can you think of any other billionaire who has the time to do that? Obviously he needs the money. He is no more a businessman than Kim Kardashian.

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

What’s more, Trump is a way too obnoxious to get anywhere in politics. It is simply idiotic to say that Mexico “is not out friend,” when they are one of America’s biggest trading partners (second biggest market for exports and third biggest for imports).

The fact that he suffers from Doofus Tourettes Syndrome doesn’t help either. How else do you explain his birtherism, or his recent declarations that America is a hell hole,” and that the American dream is dead?” These are not the bumper-stickers of a winner. But they do define the cretinous, narcissistic, anti-personality of Donald Trump. And Democrats couldn’t be more thrilled that he is among those who want to be the banner carriers for the Republican Party in 2016.

Breitbart’s Asinine Advice To Wreck ObamaCare: Don’t Buy Health Insurance

There are times when one encounters political punditry that makes you genuinely question the mental health of the alleged pundit. One of those times is at hand with today’s article by Breitbart News editor John Nolte titled “Break ObamaCare’s Back: Do Not Purchase Health Insurance.”

Breitbart ObamaCare

BreitBrat Nolte is offering this blitheringly stupid advice to his dimwitted readers based on a series of falsehoods and a fetishistic aversion to the availability of effective, affordable health insurance. He begins his rant by revealing some personal reasons for putting his health – physical and financial – at severe risk.

Nolte: Running around uninsured for the first time in my adult life has not been easy. The tax penalty isn’t cheap (2.5% of your taxable income) and there is the constant uneasy fear of an expensive medical problem, a cancer or car accident, the kind that can bankrupt you.

“History has shown, though, that there is almost always a personal price to pay for social change through civil disobedience — a price I’m willing to pay to help break the back of ObamaCare, an immoral and illegitimate government program sold with serial-presidential (and media) lies and enacted into law using one-party procedural tricks.”

Nolte is portraying himself as the Gandhi of the anti-healthcare movement. He thinks he is taking a principled stand to save America from having to suffer the torment of access to doctors and medicine. But to him the the sword dangling over his head is worth the risk if it can contribute to forcing everyone in the country to face the same risk he is foolishly assuming voluntarily.

In his first attempt to provide a substantive reason to forego healthcare, Nolte praised pre-ObamnaCare policies that he ludicrously described as “these wonderful catastrophic policies.” Now there’s a turn of phrase that cries out “oxymoron.” Nolte has to be the only person who has ever had a catastrophic policy who thinks it was “wonderful.” The rest of the world regards them as a last resort and prays that they don’t get sick.

Even so, Nolte’s praise of these wonderful policies comes with the criticism that President Obama made them illegal. But then, in his very next sentence, he contradicts himself saying that “Actually, what ObamaCare did was make these catastrophic plans unaffordable.” He’s still wrong. Nolte’s evidence of this was his assertion that he would have to pay close to three times more were he to get a catastrophic plan through ObamaCare. However, he offers no proof of that claim and his numbers are utterly unbelievable. He says that he would have to pay a premium of $400.00 per month, but the average cost of a Bronze plan under ObamaCare is only $209.00.

Nolte goes on to claim that his out-of-pocket costs would increase because providers offer lower fees to people without insurance. However, they provide the same discounts to people with high-deductible insurance plans. Plus, many preventive services (annual exams, vaccinations, colonoscopies, mammograms, etc.) are paid in full with deductibles waived.

The real motivation for Nolte’s tirade is stated when he writes “I want to do my part to break the back of ObamaCare. I just can’t live with the idea of doing anything that will benefit Obama’s and the media’s serial lies.” Nolte is admitting that his agenda is political, and not based on his best medical interests. He is simply opposed to the “greedy takers enjoying these subsidies.” That tells you something about how he feels about low and middle-class Americans seeking access to health care.

Nolte closes by misrepresenting the public’s view of ObamaCare. He cites a recent poll by the Washington Post that shows 54% opposed and 39% in favor. But Nolte is leaving out a lot of pertinent information. For instance, the Post admits that their results “contrast with other recent polls finding softening opposition and support above record low levels.” What’s more, the Post survey also shows that a similar majority (55/38) say that the Supreme Court should not rule against the ObamaCare subsidies in the King v. Burwell case that is presently being decided. That includes 65% of Democrats, 57% of Independents, and even 34% of Republicans.

Another thing that ObamaCare opponents frequently use to misconstrue public opinion is the fact that many of those who say they oppose ObamaCare do so because they think it doesn’t go far enough. When the numbers for those who favor ObamaCare are combined with those who want it to be even more comprehensive (i.e. universal, single payer), they are a solid majority.

The right’s crusade to sabotage ObamaCare is nothing new. They have been trying to kill it since before it became law. That campaign has included brazenly lying about the law’s effects, including ancillary nonsense like threats of prison for those who don’t sign up. PolitiFact has ruled at least twelve times on “Pants on Fire” lies by ObamaCare opponents bent on scaring people away.

But what Nolte is doing is much worse. He is giving his personal advice to go without health insurance. That could lead some people to suffer terrible consequences should they become sick or injured and not have the ability to seek medical care. And even if they do get treatment, they could be find themselves in a financial morass that could leave them bankrupt or homeless. This is something that conservatives have tried before. Fox News even advocated what they falsely called alternatives to health insurance, but were mostly shams that failed entirely to cover people for real-world needs.

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

These attempts to steer people away from health care are irresponsible and dangerous. And whether it is Fox News or John Nolte or any other partisan hack, they should be held accountable for the harm they cause. And there are real victims like this guy and this guy, and even this guy.

OBAMA SCARE: Making A Bullshit Mountain Out Of A Moronic Molehill

Fox News has been engaged in a massive disinformation campaign against the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) for going on three years now. After all that time, and having exhausted the considerable creative resources that came up with twelve “Pants on Fire” lies about the program, Fox’s desperation is showing.

The right-wing’s Fright Offensive over ObamaCare keeps getting more deranged every day. If they aren’t spreading fears of getting victimized by hackers, or the horrors of Americans voting, or the return of the Zombie ACORN, then it’s threats of ObamaCare prisons and gun registries.

News Corpse previously reported the utterly inane allegation that the ObamaCare website contained an invisible contract that granted the government an unfettered right to spy on health insurance consumers. Of course, as any freshman law student could tell you, there is no such thing as an enforceable, invisible contract. The gist of the complaint was that there was language secretly inserted into the website’s source code that could not be seen but nevertheless bound users to an agreement that they have “no reasonable expectation of privacy.” However, this “ghost” language was actually removed with the use of HTML comment tags by the site’s programmers rendering it inoperative.

The mental deficients pushing this notion are getting way too wrapped up in Halloween. Unfortunately, amongst those imbeciles is at least one member of Congress, the dishonorable GOP Rep. Joe Barton of Texas (where else?). In a hearing today investigating the shortcomings of the ObamaCare website implementation, Barton asked representatives of the software contractor about the “hidden” code that he said violated the law. With a flair for both ignorance and panic he yelped “The privacy section on the ObamaCare website says your privacy will be protected. The hidden source code seems to say, ‘just kidding.'” He later added “That’s Obamacare in a nutshell. It says one thing on the surface and says something totally different behind the scenes.”

Wrong! The hidden source code says nothing at all because — it’s hidden, and invisible text has no legal force or effect. In all likelihood, one of the programmers probably copied a block of text from a common privacy policy and then edited out the parts that don’t apply. But Barton compounded his misunderstanding by posting on his Facebook page after the hearing that the so-called hidden waiver “means it is an intentional policy decision of the Obama administration to deceive the American public.” Wrong again!

Not to be left out, Breitbart News editor, John Nolte, wrote a column about the congressional hearing under the headline “Hidden In Obamacare Site: Applicants Surrender Right To Privacy.” In the column he added his own chunk of stupid saying “[T]he fact that you are giving up your right to privacy is hidden in source code. […] The fact that the government is hiding the fact that you are giving up your right to privacy should be a major media scandal. But it won’t be.” BreitBrat John is right about it not being a major media scandal, but only because he’s wrong about everything else he wrote.

Fox News
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Finally, Fox News weighed in with a report by correspondent John Roberts who said that this is “another step down the rabbit hole of ‘Big Data’ […] As we’ve learned, source code in the web site’s terms and conditions states that users have “no reasonable expectation of privacy.” Roberts hasn’t learned anything at all, nor have his viewers. And apparently none of these grown men in the press or politics has as much technology savvy as a fourteen year old WoW gamer.

Breitbart Bear Hugs Fake Democrat Kirsten Powers Of Fox News

This weekend the Fox News farce “News Watch” featured its customary panel of four slobbering ultra-rightists and one alleged Democrat. This week’s lefty lamb was Kirsten Powers, who did her job of pretending to be a liberal while denigrating everything liberals stand for.

In a segment about an NPR story on wasteful spending for disability programs, the discussion suddenly veered off course to attack Media Matters with the program’s host, Jon Scott, calling it “that liberal media watchdog group funded by George Soros.” Scott complained that Media Matters had “a problem” with NPR’s report because “it has become fodder for the right wing.”

Right off the bat it should be noted that Jon Scott, whom Fox inexplicably installed as host of a media analysis show, is the Republican Party’s man at Fox News. He was caught red-handed (by Media Matters) reading “news” copy that had been cribbed, word for word, from an RNC press release.

Scott also suffers from a malady that has infected most of Fox News that could be called “Soros Tourettes Syndrome.” Its primary symptom is the uncontrollable shouting out of the name George Soros whenever some organization is mentioned that he might have made a donation to in the past five decades. Given that he is a well known billionaire philanthropist, that’s a pretty long list. In this case. Soros did make a donation to Media Matters exactly one time two years ago, which hardly puts the organization in his pocket. What Scott failed to report was that NPR, whom Scott is alleging was attacked by the Soros-funded Media Matters, also received a hefty donation from Soros. In fact, it was nearly twice what he gave to Media Matters. So Scott seems to think that Soros is attacking one of his front groups with another.

Which brings us to fake Democrat Kirsten Powers. When asked about the NPR affair, she detoured to make this baseless observation: “I just want to say first of all, Media Matters is not a legitimate organization. And they do not exist to be a media watchdog group.” She provided no support whatsoever for her allegation, however, it was enough to attract the adoring gaze of Breitbart’s John Nolte. He posted a short item fawning over Powers for her “honesty” and gushed “I disagree with Powers on almost everything, but she’s good people.”

The assertion that BreitBrat John had substantive disagreements with Powers struck me as peculiar given her overt conservative leanings. So I looked up some previous references to her on the Breitbart web site for evidence of how starkly their opinions differed. This is what I found:

  • Liberal Kirsten Powers Fights Back Against Obama’s War on Fox News
  • Kirsten Powers: Obama Nominating Rice As Secretary Of State ‘Would Be His Undoing’
  • Kirsten Powers: Obama’s ‘You Didn’t Build That” Comments Offended Me Too
  • Kirsten Powers: What Did Obama Know and When Did He Know It?
  • Kirsten Powers: ‘Obviously, There’s A Bias Behind’ Cable News Not Covering Catholic Lawsuit Against Obama
  • Liberal Pundit Powers: Obama Removing Work Requirement From Welfare Huge Issue For Romney
  • Liberal Columnist: Double Standard In Media’s Attack On Rush

These were just the articles that referenced Powers in the headlines. There were many more plaudits for her on the site within various articles. So all of this admiration and accord raises an obvious question. When Nolte says that he disagrees with Powers on “almost everything,” what the hell is he talking about?

Kirsten Powers

Powers is plainly another right-wing plant in the Fox News garden. She consistently rips the President and other Democrats and rarely offers enthusiastic praise or defense for progressive policy or people. She is only on Fox representing the left because Fox couldn’t get Ann Coulter to do it believably. But Powers is in the same conservative bag as Coulter, even going so far as to outrageously accuse Obama of sympathizing with terrorists. No wonder BreitBrat John is so infatuated.

The Anti-Constitutional, Christo-cratic Case Against Marriage Equality

With the Supreme Court’s deliberations on a pair of marriage equality cases last week, more and more right-wing “Christo-crats” are affirming their faith-based opposition to the Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection under the law. And increasingly, those affirmations are taking the form of inadvertent admissions that marriage is not within the purview of the state to decide. It is constitutionally impermissible for courts to rule for or against specific religious dogma.

God's Law

Nevertheless, That is exactly what the martinets of virtue on the right are advocating. For example, former CNN contributor Dana Loesch wrote an editorial that appeared on both RedState and the lie-riddled Fox Nation that sought to refute the notion that marriage equality is a conservative position. She insists that it is not, and that…

“Marriage is a covenant between a man, woman, and God before God on His terms. It is a religious civil liberty, not a right granted by government. […] In suing over “marriage” itself one is demanding that God change His definition of the union between a man and a woman.”

Loesch does not bother to reveal where in God’s Dictionary the definition of marriage occurs, nor does she reveal where one can pick up a copy of God’s Dictionary. If she is referencing passages in the Bible, then she is conveniently excluding from God’s definition those pious Biblical figures who maintained multiple (sometimes hundreds of) wives. Likewise she leaves out God’s mandate that rapists be forced to marry their victims. But more to the point, she is admitting that marriage is a construct of religion and, therefore, it is unconstitutional for the state to have a hand in it – except, in her view, so far as Christian-approved nuptials are concerned.

That same doctrine was addressed by Breitbart’s John Nolte in a column accusing the media of trying to destroy religion. That’s the same media that just completed endless hours of blanket coverage of the selection of a new Pope; the same media whose Christmas specials preempt everything else on the air. Nolte argues that recognition of the right for same-sex couples to marry would improperly impose on the right to religious freedom for Christians who regard such behavior as sinful. But if the religious freedom of Christians is violated every time something they regard as a sin is allowed under the law, that would make premarital sex unconstitutional [not to mention lust, gluttony, greed, sloth, wrath, envy, and pride. By that measure, the Constitution would require the dissolution of Congress] Nolte says that he is in favor of civil unions, but…

“I oppose same-sex marriage because marriage is a sacrament, and there is a big difference between asking one to be tolerant, and demanding one condone.”

Once again we have an evangelical conservative admitting that his opposition is based on spiritual grounds. And once again, that would make it an invalid argument so far as the Constitution is concerned. They simply cannot assert that something is subject to legal prohibition because it conflicts with their religious beliefs. Were that the case, Jews could seek a Supreme Court judgment mandating that all food in America be produced in accordance with the laws of Kosher. What’s more, no one is demanding that any particular behavior be condoned, merely that it not be discriminated against. That’s a distinction that conservatives have trouble comprehending, or perhaps they just enjoy being bigots.

RedState’s Erick Erickson chimed in with an article asserting that “‘Gay Marriage’ and Religious Freedom Are Not Compatible.” He hinges his argument on the Bible passage, Matthew 19:4-6, wherein Christ says…

“…He which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”

Erickson acknowledges that in this passage Christ is answering a question about whether it is permissible to divorce one’s wife. It was not a question about who is allowed to marry. But he dismisses that fact and focuses only on what he interprets as a definition of marriage, rather than as a direct response to a specific question. Likewise, he dismisses the part about divorce being against God’s law. This is an example of the convenient piety of so many sanctimonious religious zealots that permits them to pick and chose which principles they will honor. If Erickson wants to make a federal case of the definition of marriage as expressed by Matthew 19:4-6, then he should be consistent and call for a constitutional prohibition of divorce. Instead he impugns the sincerity of his ideological foes by calling them “a bunch of progressive Christians who have no use for the Bible,” even though he’s the one twisting it to fit his political prejudices.

Like Loesch and Nolte, Erickson is admitting that he sees gay marriage as “a legal encroachment of God’s intent.” Therefore, without realizing it, he is admitting that it is not a valid argument in a nation whose Constitution says that it “shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Even Bill O’Reilly has noticed that the anti-marriage equality crowd is obsessed with religious justifications, rather than sound legal arguments. He praises gay advocates for saying that…

“‘We’re Americans. We just want to be treated like everybody else.’ That’s a compelling argument, and to deny that, you have got to have a very strong argument on the other side. The argument on the other side hasn’t been able to do anything but thump the Bible.”

Indeed, Bible thumping is not generally viewed in legal circles as a basis for constitutional findings. Yet, as the issue winds through the maze of judicial debate, the Tea-vangelical’s arguments continue to devolve into nothing but sanctimonious sermonizing. It is evermore apparent that their bigotry has no justification under America’s law, so they fall back on God’s law and attempt to ram their beliefs down the nation’s throat. They clearly have no respect for the Constitution or the freedom it guarantees for religious liberty nor, of course, for the equal protection of the law that forbids the state from discriminating against same-sex couples who seek to marry.

Not So Breitbart: Left Media in Full Civil War Over Fact Checkers?

The BreitBrats are at it again. They continue to embarrass themselves with hypocritical articles that lack substance or reason. However, they do provide an abundant source of unintentional humor.

The latest episode features a column by the Editor-At-Large for Breitbart News, Ben Shapiro, with the outrageously hyperbolic title “Left Media in Full Civil War Over Fact Checkers.” The entirety of his outrage is based on the criticism of a single article by the Associated Press that purports to fact-check Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic National Convention.

The AP’s article deserved the criticism it received. It’s analysis was strikingly biased and avoided the most elementary criteria for judging the factual basis of its subject. For instance, the AP highlighted a portion of Clinton’s speech where he correctly quoted a Romney aide saying that “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.”

Mitt Romney

The quote was accurate, in context, and documented. The AP’s response…

THE FACTS: Clinton, who famously finger-wagged a denial on national television about his sexual relationship with intern Monica Lewinsky and was subsequently impeached in the House on a perjury charge, has had his own uncomfortable moments over telling the truth.

What the hell did that have to with Clinton’s remark? What bearing did it have on whether or not Clinton’s statement was factual? Obviously, none at all. And it was the criticism of this article by the AP that brought BreitBrat Ben to the boiling point, accusing the left of engaging in a “civil war” with nothing more than this one article as evidence. Ironically, Breitbart News has been conducting their own war against fact checkers, whom they regard as a “liberal” media plot. And I have evidence. Here are a few recent columns from the BreitBrats:

  • AP Publishes Laughably Unserious Fact-Check Of Clinton’s Speech
  • When Not Outright Lying, Fact-Checkers Make Fools of Themselves
  • Media Launches Preemptive ‘Fact-Check’ Strike on Romney Speech
  • Era of Media Fact Checkers Intimidating Republicans Is Over
  • WaPo’s Glenn Kessler Has Fact-Checking Tantrum Over ‘You Didn’t Build That’
  • Romney to Media Fact-Checkers: Drop Dead

Note that the first article above lambastes the very same AP fact-check that Shapiro is now bashing liberals for criticizing. Breitbart’s Editor John Nolte is apparently among the liberals who are at war. Except that Nolte’s war is with his own dementia. He actually believes that the AP published an “intentionally ridiculous” fact-check in order to help President Obama:

“From where I sit, the corrupt AP intentionally manufactured a ridiculous fact check so they could be on record fact-checking Clinton while at the same time doing zero harm to him and by extension Barack Obama.”

That’s in keeping with his previous paranoid delusions about fact-checkers being a liberal plot. Nolte and Shapiro are so obsessed with their assault on truth-telling that it has clouded their ability to even remember what they wrote a week or two ago. Even worse, in Shapiro’s article asserting that liberals are at war with fact-checkers, he unleashes a litany of attacks against them himself. So he can’t even recall his delusions from one paragraph to the next.

Last month I posted an article with the headline “Is Breitbart News Really A Parody Site Attempting To Make Conservatives Look Stupid?” That question sounds less and less rhetorical every day.

Breitbart Conspiracy Theory: Fact-Checkers Are A Liberal Plot

A new front has been established in the political war zone that reveals the unique character of the American conservative movement. Not satisfied with bashing everything about the media (despite the fact that their own Fox News is a huge part of it), the wackoids on the right have declared war against … Fact-checkers!

This may seem wildly deranged, but upon reflection it makes perfect sense. If your entire movement is built on a foundation of lies, then fact-checkers are your mortal enemy. This became clear a few days ago when a Mitt Romney adviser publicly declared that “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.”

Romney Anti-Fact-Checker

That comment was hailed by John Nolte, editor of Breitbart News, as evidence that Romney’s campaign had decided to tell fact-checkers to “Drop Dead!” It’s astonishing that a political operative would admit something so absurdly anti-fact and to frame his remarks in the context of factuality being a dictatorship. He plainly believes that being forced to adhere to only statements that are true is too large a burden for the Romney campaign. Of course, that has been apparent for the past several years to anyone who has observed Romney in action.

Now the mental deficients at Breitbart News are piling on with more articles blasting fact-checkers as if it were a dishonorable profession on a par with crack dealers. BreitBrat Nolte veritably glows with excitement as he declares that the “Era of Media Fact Checkers Intimidating Republicans Is Over.” Where he gets that from is a mystery, but then he doesn’t require any facts to support his assertions so he can say whatever the hell he wants – which he often does, such as when he advocated the murder of a child actress’ mother.

The source of Nolte’s glee came from reports following Paul Ryan’s fib-filled speech at the Republican National Kvetch-a-Sketch. Ryan was found to have slipped off of the truth tracks on numerous occasions that were well documented by a broad and diverse cross-section of the press, including Fox News. Nolte’s paranoid, conspiratorial dementia drove him to assert that the flurry of fact-checking that found fault with Ryan’s speech was…

“…undoubtedly pre-planned and organized between Team Obama and his Media Palace Guards. […] My guess is that Obama and the media set up this plan weeks ago.”

Of course they did. And Ryan must have been in on it as well because he dutifully spewed the lies that the media had pre-planned to expose in their fact-checking. The scheme would have failed without Ryan’s cooperation. Apparently, in Nolte’s diseased brain, Ryan is a double agent working to sabotage Romney’s campaign. And the plot was only uncovered because, as Nolte revealed, “Breitbart is everywhere.” Somehow the zombie spirit of Andrew Breitbart is still haunting the material world and communicating with Nolte to expose liberal media shenanigans. Scary, isn’t it?

In another article, Nolte bashed a columnist for the Washington Post, Glenn Kessler, for daring to venture into what sane political analysts call “speculation.” Nolte seems to think that when an opinion columnist attempts to anticipate events in the political world, which is what opinion columnists are paid to do, he has broken some sort of commandment. Nolte goes even further, accusing Kessler of extortion (while engaging in some childish insults):

“This feckless, impotent little fact-checker is bullying Romney; putting him on notice and threatening him. Kessler’s firing a warning show (sic) across Romney’s bow.”

Nolte virtually froths with revulsion over Kessler having the audacity to presume that Romney’s speech will contain some of the ideas Romney has been talking about on the campaign trail for several months. He may have a point. With Romney’s proclivity for flip-flopping on almost every position he takes, it may be risky to expect that he’ll be consistent in his speech tonight. So once again, Romney would have to be complicit in his own downfall in order for this plot to succeed. It’s downright insidious.

After celebrating the demise of fact-checking, Nolte feverishly condemns the practice of anticipating a future event in politics. But that doesn’t stop him from making his own wholly unsupported prediction:

“Day after day, before our very eyes, we are witnessing the media Kamikazee their integrity against the truth for a guy who’s going to lose.”

So Nolte thinks that Kessler is feckless and impotent for correctly noting the themes of Romney’s campaign and suggesting that they might be included in his big speech. But Nolte has no problem with stating as a fact that Obama is going to lose an election that is still two months away, despite the fact that the electoral college map is swinging heavily in his favor. However, that’s no problem for Nolte since he has already cast off facts as annoyances that are only important to liberals. How convenient.

Is Breitbart News Really A Parody Site Attempting To Make Conservatives Look Stupid?

The question in the headline above may seem whimsical, but at some point it needs to be taken seriously. When the Breitbart news posts a series of articles about President Obama’s press availability, like the ones they posted recently, it seems almost impossible to conclude that they aren’t there strictly for comedy.

A couple of days ago, the BreitBrats posted an article complaining that Obama hasn’t done enough press conferences. This is not the first time that the President has faced such complaints. A couple of years ago the conservative media, led by Fox News, voiced similar sentiments. However, that was only after they finished complaining that Obama was doing too many press appearances and was “overexposed.” Now, after another brief lull in press gatherings, they are at it again.

The headline of the BreitBrat piece was “Obama Dodging Issues, Tough Questions From Journalists.” Fair enough. The President should be accountable to the people and the media are their representatives. I am a big believer in public servants offering themselves up to press inquiries regularly.

So today, that is exactly what President Obama did. He made a surprise appearance in the White House Briefing Room and took questions from the cream of the presidential press corps. So of course the BreitBrats responded with gratitude for the President accommodating the demands of the people and submitting himself for questioning. Their headline today was “Obama Caves To Media, Hijacks Press Briefing.”

Actually, that doesn’t seem very gracious. After demanding that the President be more forthcoming, the BreitBrats insult him for doing so. What’s more, BreitBrat Ben Shapiro makes a delusional criticism of Obama for “dropping by on a weekend.” Someone should inform Shapiro that Monday is not generally considered to be part of the weekend.

In a separate article, Shapiro accused the President of telling “lie after lie” during the press event. But he only gave a single example of anything Obama said in the press conference that Shapiro considered to be untruthful. It concerned the President’s statement that “Nobody accused Mr. Romney of being a felon.” Obama was responding to a question about comments made by Deputy Campaign Manager Stephanie Cutter. She said a few weeks ago that…

“Either Mitt Romney, through his own words and his own signature, was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the SEC, which is a felony, or he was misrepresenting his position at Bain to the American people to avoid responsibility for some of the consequences of his investments.”

Of course, that is not an accusation of being a felon. Simply saying that if someone were to commit a felony they would be a felon is not even remotely the same as saying outright that someone is a felon. I could, for instance, say that if I were to commit a felony I would be a felon. See? I did not just call myself a felon. But that simple distinction was too much for BreitBrat Ben and his only example of an alleged lie dissolves into vapor.

Additionally, BreitBrat John Nolte chirped in with his own hilarity. He is apparently very disturbed that the President made a reference to Mitt Romney not releasing his tax returns. So he stretched credulity beyond recognition by associating Obama’s comments with a comedy routine by Jon Stewart. A few weeks ago, Stewart blasted Harry Reid for suggesting that Romney’s dead father, who famously released twelve year’s of tax returns, would be ashamed of his son Mitt for his resistance to making his taxes available to the American people.

Nolte thinks that Obama’s reference to the tax issue in general was identical to Reid’s invocation of the elder Romney’s shame. It’s not. While it could be argued that Reid stepped over the line by imputing an emotional reaction by Romney’s father that Reid couldn’t possibly have known, Obama did nothing of the sort. It is perfectly acceptable to make note of the fact that Romney’s dad released twelve years of tax returns when he ran for president. Nolte seems to be implying that any mention of an actual fact about prior presidential candidates and their tax returns is off limits. That is just plain crazy.

All of this nonsense occurred within hours of Obama’s press conference – a conference that the right, including the BreitBrats, had been clamoring for. And when they got what they wanted, they spent the afternoon making up incoherent critiques rather than giving the President credit for listening to his critics and appearing before the press as they had requested.

The sort of right-wing extremists that inhabit Breitbart’s domain make a mockery of the conservative media. They castigate the President for not doing something, then lambaste him for eventually doing it. They have a built in lose-lose proposition that really does nothing but dissolve any credibility they might otherwise have strung together. That’s why I’m becoming more and more convinced that they are a secret offshoot of The Onion. That would explain so much. And otherwise, they are just making fools of themselves for no good reason.

Fox Nation vs. Reality: Obama Selling Amnesty?

The issue of immigration is one that the Fox Nationalists relish in demogoguing. They publish numerous stories that are openly racist, as has been thoroughly documented. Here’s just such a story that was designed to inflame prejudice with its utterly dishonest skewing of the facts:

Fox Nation

The headline composed by the mental deficients at Fox Nation is wholly untrue. Not only is amnesty not a part of the administration’s program, nothing in it is for sale.

In truth. President Obama directed the Department of Homeland Security to exercise prosecutorial discretion so that innocent children who were brought to this country by undocumented parents are not unduly punished while a more comprehensive solution is negotiated with Congress. The program does not provide amnesty. The fee to apply for this program is intended to offset costs, but can be waived on a case by case basis for applicants unable to pay.

None of those facts stopped Fox from deliberately misrepresenting the matter in way that leads their dimwitted audience to presume that the administration is peddling citizenship to foreigners who come here to steal our jobs. It appears that Fox picked up the story from the juveniles at Breitbart News where John Nolte published an article that implied that Obama’s goal is to mint new voters. Never mind that the immigrants partaking of this program will not have voting rights because they will not be citizens.

Nolte also made a point of adding a note at the end of his column complaining that the author of the article he referenced at ABC News didn’t use the derogatory adjective “illegal” to refer to the program’s potential participants. Apparently Nolte gets upset when people are not sufficiently racist for him.