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Right Wing Conspiracy Part I Introduction to the Right Wing Conspiracy
Right Wing Conspiracy Part II The Religious Right and the Christian Reconstructionists
Right Wing Conspiracy Part III Christian Reconstructionism, Christian Ayatollahs, and Racism
Right Wing Conspiracy Part IV Republican Gomorrah
Right Wing Conspiracy Part V The 12 Worst (and most powerful) Christian Right Groups
Right Wing Conspiracy Part VI How the Republicans Repackage Repeated Failures as Success -- And the Media Buys the Scam
Right Wing Conspiracy Part VII 10 of America's Most Dangerous Hatemongers
Right Wing Conspiracy Part VIII If Corporations and the Rich Paid 1960s-Level Taxes, Debt Would Vanish
Right Wing Conspiracy Part IX Why the Wealthiest Americans Are the Real 'Job-Killers'
Right Wing Conspiracy Part X Why extreme right-wing ideology so often inspires acts of violence
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XI Why Extreme Right-Wing Ideology So Often Inspires Acts of Violence
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XII 5 Reasons Right-Wingers Are Sabotaging Public Transportation Projects
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XIII Republican Conservative Taliban
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XIV Republican Treason
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XV Republican Bigotry
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XVI Republican Scandals
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XVII Republican Hypocrisy
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XVIII A Day in the Life of Joe Middleclass Republican
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XIX Republican Gomorrah
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XX Republican Death Threats and Obama
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXI Republican Criminals
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXII Is there a Right Wing Conspiracy
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXIII Republican Sex Scandals
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXIV Want to know the truth about statements made by Politicians? Click on the following web sites to check on what is true and what is false.
FactCheck.org - Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania
FactChecker - Washington Post
PolitiFact - St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXV Spencer Bachus
Right Wing Conspiracy Part XXV Spencer Bachus
THE REPUBLICAN CONSERVATIVE EXTREMISTS ARE THE ENEMY by R. Blackbird
Republican Conservative Extremists are selfish, self serving, power hungry, hateful of the poor, disloyal to the nation and its people, dishonest, avaricious, scornful of the nation's history, the dignity of its institutio
ns, its standards of political morality, and its vision of advancement for all the people. The Republicans Conservative love war as long as they and theirs do not have to put on helmets and carry guns into the fighting. They use lies to start wars that kill hundreds of thousands of innocents and thousands of our own military service people. They love massive war-time profits, unavailable to their rich masters if war is absent.
The Republicans Conservative Extremisits hate the rest of us, which they must, in order to pass away from themselves and onto us, the financial burdens and losses their crimes, schemes and thefts cause. They are prolific, incessant, and destructive liars. They are blasphemers for they insist that their hateful and destructive deeds are the work of God. They are apostates for they gleefully attack the poor, the immigrants, the old and the sick, of whom God has commanded all of us to be mindful.
There is no reasoning with them, for all their logic is built on false premises. There is no appealing to them for honor's sake for they have lost all sense of shame and have no honor, there is no appealing to them for the nation's sake for that it what they hate the most.
The Republican Conservative Extremists are the enemy.
THE TRUTH ABOUT REPUBLICANS BY GEORGE CARLIN
ATTACK OF THE ZOMBIE REPUBLICANS
Excerpts from articles from thedailybeast.com by John Batchelor and articles from huffingtonpost.com by Steven Weber.
The GOPs living dead wont stop haunting their party, says lifelong Republican John Batchelor. Now Rush, Newt, and Dick are doing what zombies do best: laying waste to everyones brains.
The Republican Party has become many bad thingsintolerant, inert, fly-blown, incoherent, and delusionalbut the worst is that the GOP is no longer young. The GOP, according to a Gallup poll, has lost, forgotten, ignored, just generally scared off the younger voters, non-white voters, and female voters in all demographics.
What is a political party that is vastly white, middle-aged, male, Southern, pious, conservative, aggrieved, impotent, nostalgic, rudeand regarded negatively by more than half the respondents? Time magazines Republican political consultant Mike Murphy looks at the demographics and warns of a coming ice age for the party. That is grossly optimistic. No longer in second place, the voter self-identification polls place the Republicans well behind the leading independents and the second-place Democrats. The GOP is the equivalent of a shrinking third party on its way to becoming a museum piece beside the Whigs, the Greenbacks, and the Prohibitionists. The GOP is like a zombie cartoon reading the daily headlines of the last four years and asking, Am I dead?
The GOP is like a zombie cartoon reading the daily headlines of the last four years and asking, Am I dead?
The attack of the living dead Republicans does have the camp fascination of a George Romero movie as pieces of brains fall out. Last week, Deputy Minority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia, in some quarters regarded as cunning, boasted soberly not only that, without any polling evidence, I think were got a shot at taking back the House, but also that the Obama administration was comparable to Putins rule in Moscow. Cantor did not explain if he meant that the Obama administration is Soviet socialist, which is balmy, since Moscow is a robber baron paradise these days, or if he meant the Obama administration stands for tyrannical one-party rule, which is dopey, since Cantor appears to think of himself as virile leader of the opposition.
Last week, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a generalissimo of zombies, fresh from smearing Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor for new racism, presented more startling delusions at a congressional fundraiser in Washington when he claimed that the Republicans were the majority party. He offered no facts to counter the Gallup polls certainty that the Republicans are a minor minority party. Nor did Gingrich, who increasingly pontificates with the bravado of the vacuous TV anchor from the old Mary Tyler Moore Show, Ted Baxter, note that the cash raised in the ballroom of swells was down by a third from last year; nor did he explain his demagogic remark that the Obama administration has already failed, with bailouts that are chiefly a continuation of a Republican administrations panicky policies.
The GOP is the equivalent of a shrinking third party on its way to becoming a museum piece beside the Whigs, the Greenbacks, and the Prohibitionists.
Gingrich did take aim at his demagogic pal Rush Obama to fail Limbaugh when he said, I am happy that Dick Cheney is a Republican. I am happy that Colin Powell is a Republican. This coy rhetoric was meant to point to the dull disputes between Limbaugh and those Republican politicians who he claims are unwelcome in the party because they dont agree with him. Limbaugh routinely runs his mouth about disloyal or squishy Republicans, as if he was outing the skin-job Cylons on Battlestar Galactica. It is trite, but it can quickly turn vulgar. On TV, Limbaugh recently baited Colin Powell and the Republican moderate stragglers again when he boomed What has Colin Powell ever done that makes him so valuable to the Republican Party?
That Limbaugh doesnt know the answer to his self-evidently stupid question is both astonishing and evidence of self-loathing, if there is a real self. In 2009, it is awful to see that a man of such village courthouse venom for the valorous Powell can dance around in public as a faux Socrates. Also, there is a cult of goonish intolerance that hangs around with Limbaugh and his flim-flam croniesa cult that is daily fed the same gossip by the same handful of surprisingly Drudge-dependent sources, a cult that claims to be Republican but could just as easily be Wahhabist for all its make-believe masculine grievances, a cult that is either harmless or helpful to Democrats, and yet, with its halitosis of self-righteousness, drives away the curious, young voter from the GOP.
A once-idealistic, decent political party of all the states and all demographics for 150 years has now become a cruel cadre that defines itself like a jihadby what it is against.
It is not possible to dismiss Cantor, Gingrich, Cheney, and Limbaugh as only just cult cranks, because the Gallup poll shows that the nation regards them as speaking for the party, and so do the Republicans themselvesLimbaugh at 13 percent, Gingrich at 10 percent, Dick Cheney at 9 percent, far ahead of anyone actually holding or running for office.
Pundits like the nonpartisan analyst Charlie Cook assert that the party is in its wilderness period and will emerge after a time-out like a recalcitrant child of privilege. Partisans like the defensive former Bush speechwriter David Frum are smeared publicly by Limbaugh and his cult for trying to push back at the demagogues as bombastic and a stereotype of self-indulgence; yet when Frum gets a chance to fight back in Newsweek, he invites the muggers for an open debate. About what? Polite commentators like Peggy Noonan, while nodding cautiously to the demagogues as though they are pet gargoyles, beseeches the party in her Wall Street Journal column to cure its base-itis, to open its arms to something that isnt an opera of bigotry, to cease the self-branding as mean, thick, and angry.
None of these mewling half-measures speak to the fact that a once idealistic, decent political party of all the states and all demographics for 150 years has now become a cruel cadre that defines itself like a jihad by what it is against. Now and again, I want to shout at them that the city on a hill that is America was not built by four centuries of honest strife to be a gated-community of vain whiners. But then I relax and let them do the talking. Fail is a word that ties together Limbaugh, Gingrich, Cheney ,and Cantor, and they use the word like a curse routinely. Fail, Obama. Fail, Powell. Fail, Pelosi. Fail, liberals. Fail, Moslems. Fail, health care. Fail, moderates. Fail, city on a hill. The zombies hurl the word at whoever does not look like them or listen to them or need them. They are speaking into the looking glass. Whos the fairest of them all?
Posted: 05 Jul 2011 02:00 PM PDT
David Brooks is amazed that Republicans aren't taking all the tax cuts the Obama administration has given up in the debt-ceiling kabuki negotiations and going so far as calling them a "Not Normal" party.
The Democrats have agreed to tie budget cuts to the debt ceiling bill. They have agreed not to raise tax rates. They have agreed to a roughly 3-to-1 rate of spending cuts to revenue increases, an astonishing concession.
Moreover, many important Democrats are open to a truly large budget deal. President Obama has a strong incentive to reach a deal so he can campaign in 2012 as a moderate. The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, has talked about supporting a debt reduction measure of $3 trillion or even $4 trillion if the Republicans meet him part way. There are Democrats in the White House and elsewhere who would be willing to accept Medicare cuts if the Republicans would be willing to increase revenues.
If the Republican Party were a normal party, it would take advantage of this amazing moment. It is being offered the deal of the century: trillions of dollars in spending cuts in exchange for a few hundred million dollars of revenue increases.
A normal Republican Party would seize the opportunity to put a long-term limit on the growth of government. It would seize the opportunity to put the country on a sound fiscal footing. It would seize the opportunity to do these things without putting any real crimp in economic growth.
The party is not being asked to raise marginal tax rates in a way that might pervert incentives. On the contrary, Republicans are merely being asked to close loopholes and eliminate tax expenditures that are themselves distortionary.
This, as I say, is the mother of all no-brainers.
But we can have no confidence that the Republicans will seize this opportunity. Thatís because the Republican Party may no longer be a normal party. Over the past few years, it has been infected by a faction that is more of a psychological protest than a practical, governing alternative.
The members of this movement do not accept the logic of compromise, no matter how sweet the terms. If you ask them to raise taxes by an inch in order to cut government by a foot, they will say no. If you ask them to raise taxes by an inch to cut government by a yard, they will still say no. The members of this movement do not accept the legitimacy of scholars and intellectual authorities. A thousand impartial experts may tell them that a default on the debt would have calamitous effects, far worse than raising tax revenues a bit. But the members of this movement refuse to believe it.
It's not shocking to us. They haven't been a normal party for a long time and the Obama administration has allowed them to control the narrative anyway. Of course they are going to push and push and push for more and more and more. Does anybody believe that Republicans will eventually not raise the debt ceiling with what they are already getting? I heard from Andrea Mitchell today that the date is around July 22nd in which the CBO needs to get the information from Congress to score so they can have it ready before the August 2nd deadline.
Is this the big hope for Team Obama? They agree to off-the-chart spending cuts hoping to get a nominal increase in revenue somewhere -- which, in the scope of the negotiations, is meaningless -- and then hope Rand Paul or somebody else refuses even a deal that David Brooks can't believe happened, and then they win the Beltway Villagers over to their side?
The debt ceiling was always raised with no muss or no fuss because the American economy is not the same as my personal bank account. Tremendous amounts of monies flow through the world and this country and not raising it would be catastrophic. Since Brooks is so connected to the grand poobahs of the GOP, you have to wonder if some of them worried that the Tea Party element actually won't allow them to raise the debt ceiling unless they get 100% of what they want, and so they sent him out to do some dirty work. Or is it a ploy to start singing kumbaya for all the spending cuts they've gotten already from the Dems once the ceiling is raised?
Richard Cohen even joins in the fray on our side for a change and calls the GOP 'a cult' -- but what of it? Where were Brooks and Cohen when they were really needed? Steve Benen wonders if the GOP has pushed the Villagers too far this time:
In general, this political establishment is ďwiredĒ in Republicansí favor. Itís GOP ideas that get attention; itís GOP talking points that get internalized; itís GOP voices that get aired.
But when it comes to the debt ceiling and debt-reduction talks, and the fact that Democrats are the only ones willing to compromise, I canít help but wonder if the tide of elite opinion is starting to turn against Republicans. If so, itís pretty late in the game ó Brooks and Cohen should have picked up on this months, if not years, ago ó but hereís hoping the circumstances and radical tactics have left Villagers with no other choice.
I seriously doubt it.
Republicans: the Damned Truth and the Truth Be Damned
Oh boy. It's like trying to fix a stubborn cowlick while wearing boxing gloves.
Republicans just do not, will not, uh uh, want to cooperate in this little thing called Democracy. Period. And their game plan looks like this:
(Pardon the crude attempt at a Vonnegut-like visual aid.)
The proof that they will never, ever let this president -- this Democratic president -- tell them what's what is that no matter what he posits in terms of fixing all the things Bush broke, things which always could have been improved upon, things which would benefit less fortunate Americans, things which would restore our prestige abroad, which would restore the warmth to the nation's character, the Republicans look at him (and by extension the majority of America) with dead eyes, crossed arms and do absolutely nothing.
No alternative plans, suggestions, advice. No involvement, curiosity, no moments of introspection. Allowing violently disposed fringe elements to steer policy when that job used to be the bailiwick of legislators and operatives schooled in poly-sci. It's an approach that begs the question:
Do Republicans actually like Democracy?
Really. Their strategy seems to be one of complete disdain for the last 200 or so years of that defining American civil exercise. They are behaving as though they've discarded all pretense of caring or participation. Weird.
Ooh! I know! Perhaps the Republicans are playing into some master plan wherein all power is gradually, systematically leeched from the masses and centralized into a snug, capitalistic, corporate version of an aristocracy, keeping The People perpetually strained but entertained by shiny yet easily broken/disposable/replaceable baubles and only minimally involved in the basic running of the country so as to provide the citizenry with an illusion of democratic participation and therefore allowing them to distinguish their lives from that of common, old fashioned serfs.
Nah. That would be too simplistic, too 19th century. But back to today:
Even after realizing that Obama, master of many things they aren't, is also demonstrating a centrist rather than a dreaded leftist approach to governance, in many ways incorporating aspects which they themselves have favored in the past, to put forward his workable agenda as opposed to the armageddon/fascist/socialist dystopia the frothing Republican mouthpieces warned of, they still refuse to play.
Damn vexing! So, what could it be?
Hmm. Could it... is it because... oh, I don't know... is it because he's...
Nah. That would be too simplistic, too 19th century. Oh. Wait a minute...
Conservatives Stepping Up PR, Legal Battle Against Liberal Group
The first week of May was as eventful for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) as any time since the 2008 election. It began with 26 counts of extortion and voter registration fraud filed against the group and some of its members in Clark County, Nev. It continued with the indictments of seven ACORN workers in Allegheny County, Pa. Democrats staged a floor fight over a Republican amendment to block any organization that had indicted members from getting taxpayer dollars. ACORNs national spokesman was kicked off of Glenn Becks Fox News set.
Republicans pounced, and the week ended with a Republican National Committee fundraising appeal that attacked the Obama administration for considering the use of sampling in the upcoming Census as a hidden-in-plain sight benefit to ACORN.
Image by: Matt Mahurin
ACORNs community organizers are eager to once again take action to aid their old friend in the White House, wrote RNC Chairman Michael Steele. You can be sure theyll be manipulating population numbers.
The 39-year-old group has never been more controversial. Bertha Lewis, the chief executive officer and chief organizer of ACORN since the middle of last year, could not have been happier.
Fine, bring it, Lewis said in an interview with TWI, inside ACORNs national offices near Capitol Hill. She brought up her fists in a boxing stance. Lets bring it. We know what the true facts are. We know that well win in court. Our strategy now is to beef up our operations so we can defend ourselves.
ACORN spent decades under the radar, agitating on housing and employment issues, garnering the ire of business and conservative leaders, but not really winning political infamy. That changed in 2008, and Lewis now believes the organizations next 39 years might be spent in a permanent offensive stance battling lawsuits, defending its brand against attacks from Republicans, and indulging in cable news shouting matches. In the space of months the group has become the most notorious member of the Democrats coalition. To many conservatives, its about time, and its the pay-off for years of fruitless exposes of ACORNs influence.
Republicans had been looking for a way to bring them down for a long time, explained Matthew Vadum, a senior editor at the Capital Research Center, an anti-union think tank, In the last year, all these of opportunities were presented to them. Barack Obama was running for president, and hed been a community organizer whod worked with ACORN, and that heightened interest in what community organizing was, and who these people were. All these corrupt things youre hearing about today, they were happening in the past. They just werent as interesting or as sexy for the media.
The Capital Research Center, founded in 1984 and located in a rambling, busy townhouse off of Dupont Circle, was one of the conservative organizations that spent years investigating ACORN while having little luck weakening them. As recently as 2006, a Republican like Sen. John McCain was comfortable attending the groups national convention to ask for support on immigration reform. That changed with the 2006 elections and the indictments of ACORN workers, in key campaign states like Missouri, for voter fraud which was pushed behind the scenes by the Department of Justice and was part of the broad scandal surrounding the firing of nine U.S. attorneys that ended with the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
I think theyve never forgiven us for being the impetus of bringing down Alberto Gonzales, said Lewis. They came after us in 2006, and tried to get [former U.S. Attorney for New Mexico] David Iglesias and these other attorneys to come back with something, and there was nothing. We dont get enough credit for bringing down Gonzales.
All of this came shortly before ACORNs leadership would be taken down in a separate scandal. In 2008, the groups founder Wade Rathke resigned after an investigation revealed that his brother had stolen $1 million from ACORN. It was a public relations blow and an organizational crisis Rathke, according to Vadum, was an organizational genius and it led directly into a general election where ACORN faced more indictments and became a bruising point of attack for Republicans. According to McCain, ACORN was destroying the fabric of democracy, and according to the Republican Party the group was trying to steal the election by registering fraudulent voters.
Republican officials now admit that the group didnt really come close to stealing the race for Obama. On Election Day, recalled Nevada Republican Party Chairwoman Sue Lowden, the GOP watched the issue closely, alerted state officials to bogus registrations, and dispatched trained people to the polls to look for voters showing up to cast ballots under assumed names at fake addresses. None showed up. Would it have made a difference? asked Lowden. No, none of our races were that close.
Nonetheless, Lowden was one of many Republicans who cheered at the indictments handed down in Nevada last week. The charges came after local officials, several of them Democrats, answered the 11th-hour controversies over ACORN registrations by asking for official investigations. The timing was good for House Republicans who spent last week attempting to save an amendment that was explicitly written to block money for ACORN, but it took others by surprise.
Im surprised that its not
happening closer to the election, said David Iglesias, a former U.S. attorney who
lost his job after declining to throw the book at ACORN in 2006. Its worse
than beating a dead horse. The horse is just buried. I never reviewed any evidence to see
that ACORN, as an organization, was directing fraud. Thats the kind of evidence that
you need to actually win one of these prosecutions.
The prosecutions, and their coverage, were a token of ACORNs new, ever-controversial reality. In the past six months, they have been accused, by conservatives, of being the culprits of much more than voter registration fraud, and any hint of ACORN connections have been enough for robust attacks on liberals. Stanley Kurtz of the Ethics and Public Policy Center has popularized the dubious theory that ACORNs campaigns for low-income housing was at the base of the housing bubble and the subsequent economic collapse. House Republicans have frequently portrayed the economic stimulus package as a giveaway to ACORN which, they argued, would be eligible for a portion of $4.19 billion in neighborhood stabilization funding earmarked in the bill for states, local governments and community groups. David F. Hamilton, Obamas nominee for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit, was opposed by the conservative Judicial Confirmation Network because he had done some work with ACORN in the 1970s. At the first anti-stimulus Tea Party protests in late February, some protesters brandished anti-ACORN signs before the wave of protests on April 15, a rumor spread that ACORN was readying a campaign of mass disruptions and infiltration. In Fox News reports, this rumor was traced back to some people. At the Tea Party in Washington, the occasional trouble-makers that walked by, such as the ironic protesters of Billionaires for Bush, were greeted by shouts of ACORN, even though they had nothing to do with the group.
Lewis reiterated what she said in April we dont care about their Tea Parties but Heather Heidelbaugh, a Pittsburgh lawyer who has aggressively investigated ACORN scandals on behalf of state Republicans, said that three members of the group showed up at the Pittsburgh Tea Party. They simply werent undercover. And in any case, Heidelbaugh has concentrated more on representing ACORN whistleblowers who claim that the organization exploits its volunteers and offers up muscle for money protesters for hire to shake down other organizations. In March, Heidelbaugh testified before a House panel and got what sounded like a tentative commitment from Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, to investigate the group.
The Democrats have found a natural constituency with ACORN, said Heidelbaugh, but theres a rising tide here. The more they are exposed by their members, the more difficult it will be for their natural constituents to support them, because it will be politically impossible to do so.
But the break hasnt happened yet. Heidelbaugh was disappointed last week after Conyers balked at an investigation after speaking with ACORN and being told by fellow Democratic members that the case against ACORN was baseless. One unintended consequence of the Republican anti-ACORN push, so far, has been unified support from Democrats against the attacks. Only four House Democrats voted against an amendment that struck Rep. Michele Bachmanns (R-Minn.) rule to deny contracts to any group with a member under indictment.
The media plays a vital role in this, said Heidelbaugh. If the criticism of ACORN comes across as those Republicans going after ACORN again, it gets covered like a political attack. If you state the facts, that there are African-American board members of ACORN who want to expose corruption in this organization, then the Democratic Congress might stop and say, Whats going on here? Thats not happening yet.
Lewis relished in the way that Republicans were politicizing the case against ACORN, and credited the Democrats with standing up against anti-ACORN legislation even if they dont brag about it in their campaigns. The more wacko the Republicans get, said Lewis, and the more shrill they are, and the more we stand up, whether its the administration or its us, the more people are going to go, You know, these people are wacky, this is silly, and this is stupid.
- in desperate need of a heart transplant
- born without a conscience
- have a poster of Rush Limbaugh on your wall
- have a poster of Carl Rove on your ceiling (above your bed)
- have that 24.99 Sarah Palin alarm clock that you wake up each morning to ''YOU BETCHA''
- looking around your PTA meetings and seeing only white people
- oblivious to the hurt and suffering around you
- DO NOT see d.e.a.d people
- living in a comfy cushy little world that is behind closed gates
- rarely getting off your ass from watching clusterfox all day other than to go to the fridge to get more chilled chardonnay
- only look for the letter R in any voting booth any where for any person (qualified of not)
- are convinced that your lot in life is everybody elses' fault ..especial
- are a man that wants to control a woman's body and HER right to chose
- just not giving a DAMN for anybody but yourself
HOW is THAT American ? or even Human ?
The decimation of the Republican party for a generation is coming in November.
An Irish Friend
Hateful, Radical White Evangelical Ministers -- Are Acceptable To White Conservative Talk Radio -- And Conservative Main Stream Media
One of this week's hysterical press scandals was that Minister Louis Farrakhan praised Barack Obama's candidacy even though Obama had previously denounced numerous Farrakhan remarks and the Obama campaign did nothing to seek out the Farrakhan praise. Nonetheless, Tim Russert demanded that Obama jump through multiple hoops to prove that he has no connection to -- and, in fact, "rejects" -- the ideas espoused by Farrakhan deemed to be radical and hateful.
Yesterday, though, the equally fringe, radical and hateful (at least) Rev. John Hagee -- a white evangelical who is the pastor of a sprawling "mega-church" in Texas -- enthusiastically endorsed John McCain. Did McCain have to jump through the same hoops which Russert and others set up for Obama and "denounce" Hagee's extremism and "reject" his support? No; quite the opposite. McCain said he was "very honored" to receive this endorsement and, when asked about some of Hagee's more twisted views, responded: "all I can tell you is that I am very proud to have Pastor John Hagee's support."
McCain's sainted supporter, Joe Lieberman, last year spoke to Hagee's group and lavished him with such obsequious praise that Lieberman actually compared Hagee, favorably, to Moses. Why is Louis Farrakhan deemed by our political establishment to be so radioactive as to not be fit for good company -- black candidates are required to repudiate his support even when they haven't sought it and denounce his views even when they've never advocated anything close to those views -- but John Hagee is a perfectly acceptable figure whom mainstream GOP politicians are free to court without any consequences or media objections?
Here is just a small sampling of the belief system of this welcomed McCain supporter:
* All Muslims are programmed to kill and we can thus never negotiate with any of them. From an NPR interview Hagee gave to Terry Gross in 2006:
TG: If you use the Bible as the basis for policy, is there any room for compromise? And if you use the bible as the basis for policy, should Muslims use the Koran as the basis for their policy, and then again, what possible basis is there for compromise at that point?
JH: There is really no room for compromise between radical Islam --
TG: I'm not talking about radical Islam. I'm just talking about Islam in general.
JH: Well Islam in general -- those who live by the Koran have a scriptural mandate to kill Christians and Jews.
* God caused Hurricane Katrina to wipe out New Orleans because it had a gay pride parade the week before and was filled with sexual sin. From the same interview:
JH: All hurricanes are acts of God, because God controls the heavens. I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God, and they were recipients of the judgment of God for that.
The newspaper carried the story in our local area, that was not carried nationally, that there was to be a homosexual parade there on the Monday that the Katrina came. And the promise of that parade was that it would was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other gay pride parades.
So I believe that the judgment of God is a very real thing. I know there are people who demur from that, but I believe that the Bible teaches that when you violate the law of God, that God brings punishment sometimes before the Day of Judgment, and I believe that the Hurricane Katrina was, in fact, the judgment of God against the city of New Orleans
* The End Times -- Rapture -- is imminent and the U.S. Government must do what it can to hasten it, which at minimum requires: (a) a war with Iran and (b) undying, absolute support for a unified Israel, including all Occupied Territories (hence, Joe Lieberman's love affair with them). From Christian Palestinian Daoud Kuttab in The New York Times (h/t PZ Meyers):
A small minority of evangelical Christians have entered the Middle East political arena with some of the most un-Christian statements I have ever heard. . . . [Rev.] Hagee, a popular televangelist who leads the 18,000-member Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, ratcheted up his rhetoric this year with the publication of his book, "Jerusalem Countdown," in which he argues that a confrontation with Iran is a necessary precondition for Armageddon (which will mean the death of most Jews, in his eyes) and the Second Coming of Christ. In the best-selling book, Hagee insists that the United States must join Israel in a preemptive military strike against Iran to fulfill God's plan for both Israel and the West.
Hagee believes that "the president's support for Israel fulfills a biblical injunction to protect the Jewish state," which "will play a pivotal role in the second coming." These views are not unrelated to Hagee's support for McCain. Quite the contrary; Hagee cited McCain's so-called "pro-Israel views," his belligerence towards Iran, and his social conservatism as reasons for the endorsement. And in critical contrast to Obama and Farrakhan, McCain actually seems to share some of Hagee's more twisted views, as evidenced by McCain's joyful singing about dropping bombs on Iran.
The GOP has long been given a pass on courting the most warped and twisted religious figures around. George Bush spoke regularly with Pat Robertson -- never once forced to "denounce" or "reject" him. In 2006, Rev. Hagee had a private meeting with uber-White House neocon (and convicted criminal) Elliot Abrams, who just happens to run Middle East policy in the Bush administration, and afterwards, Hagee gushed that he and Abrams (like he and Lieberman) shared similar views towards the Middle East: "we felt we were on the right track."
Watching the media's treatment of Farrakhan and Hagee, is it possible to imagine a more transparent, and grotesque, double standard? In the framework of the Russert-led establishment press, white evangelical Christians are, by definition, entitled to great respect no matter how radical, extreme and hateful their professed views are. These are, after all, religious Christians -- People of Faith -- and, as such, it is wrong, even bigoted, to suggest that they should be repudiated. There is nothing ever radical, hateful or dangerous about the views of white evangelical Christians like Hagee.
Thus, white evangelical Ministers are free to advocate American wars based on Biblical mandates, rant hatefully against Islam, and argue that natural disasters occur because God hates gay people. They are still fit for good company, an important and cherished part of our mainstream American political system. The entire GOP establishment is permitted actively to lavish them with praise and court their support without the slightest backlash or controversy. Both George Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert sent formal greetings to the 2006 gathering of Hagee's group.
By contrast, black Muslim ministers like Farrakhan, or even black Christian ministers like Rev. Jeremiah Wright, are held with deep suspicion, even contempt. McCain is free to hug and praise the Rev. Hagees of the world, but Obama is required to prove over and over and over and over that he does not share the more extreme views of black Ministers.
How come Tim Russert -- in all the times he sits and chats with Lieberman, McCain and various high Bush officials -- never reads all of the inflammatory, disgusting, crazed "Rapture-is-Coming/ All-Jews-will-Burn/ Kill-All-Muslims/ Hurricanes-are-Punishment-against-Gays" pronouncements from John Hagee and James Dobson and Pat Robertson and demand that John McCain and George Bush and Joe Lieberman "denounce" those views and "reject" their support? What's the difference, exactly?
UPDATE: As emaydon recalls in Comments, McCain supporter Rudy Giuliani, just a few months ago, stood on the same stage and gushed with gratitude over the endorsement by Rev. Pat Robertson of Giuliani's presidential bid.
That's the same Rev. Robertson who, among so many great things, said that Ariel Sharon's stroke was God's punishment for giving up Gaza and the 9/11 attack was divine retribution against America -- America's fault -- for tolerating gays, feminists and the ACLU. But Giuliani was the moderate, respectable candidate who was free to accept Robertson's endorsement, and Russert and his friends never demanded that he "reject" it.
Although cavorting with the likes of Pat Robertson and John Hagee is perfectly acceptable in Russert World, Russert also demanded, back in January, 2006, that Obama opine on various controversial remarks from the highly influential political philosopher Harry Belafonte (h/t JKP1000):
MR. RUSSERT: I want to talk a little bit about the language people are using in the politics now of 2006, and I refer you to some comments that Harry Belafonte made yesterday. He said that Homeland Security had become the new Gestapo. What do you think of that?
MR. RUSSERT: Mr. Belafonte went to Venezuela, as you well know, some time ago and met with the Hugo Chavez, leader of that country, and said some things that obviously were noted in this country and around the world. Lets listen, and come back and talk about it.
(Videotape, January 8, 2006) . . .
MR. RUSSERT: Is it appropriate to call the President of the United States "the greatest terrorist in the world"?
Obama is required to denounce certain people with whom he has no connection while the likes of Bush, McCain, Lieberman and Giuliani are free to associate themselves openly with the most extremist elements around.
Here is the McCain campaign website proudly promoting a video of Rev. Hagee's reverent introduction of McCain, while McCain and wife Cindy stood proudly by, during the candidate's "No Surrender Tour":
During his remarks, Rev. Hagee denounced those "in Congress who whine about the cost of the war"; said we can't withdraw from Iraq because "Israel will be in greater danger than ever before," pointed out that "Allah [is Ahmadinejad's] God -- not ours"; and raved that McCain "is the leader and the [other candidates] are followers." Rev. Hagee concluded: "Without victory, there is no survival." McCain then went over to him and warmly shook his hand.
Over at New Republic, Dayo Olopade collects a couple of additional Hagee quotes, including this one warning about the Harry Potter books:
As millions of people anticipate the release of the latest Harry Potter book and film, we're reminded once again of Satan's ongoing attempt to deceive and destroy. The whole purpose of the Potter books is to desensitize readers and introduce them to the occult.
McCain in 2008! Let's ask Joe Lieberman what he thinks about the Pastor:
I begin by thanking your founder, Pastor John Hagee. I would describe Pastor Hagee with the words the Torah uses to describe Moses, he is an "Eesh Elo Kim," a man of God because those words fit him; and, like Moses he has become the leader of a mighty multitude in pursuit of and defense of Israel.
John McCain and Joe Lieberman -- Hagee reverence and all -- are our nation's Serious, principled, and moderate figures. Just ask Tim Russert, Fred Hiatt, Joe Klein, Gloria Borger, Chris Matthews, et al.
The Catholic League's Bill Donohue, the media's anointed arbiter for all matters relating to what he claims is "anti-Catholic bigotry," is quite furious about McCain's warm embrace of Pastor Hagee:
Catholic League president Bill Donohue addressed this today:
"There are plenty of staunch evangelical leaders who are pro-Israel, but are not anti-Catholic. John Hagee is not one of them. Indeed, for the past few decades, he has waged an unrelenting war against the Catholic Church. For example, he likes calling it 'The Great Whore,' an 'apostate church,' the 'anti-Christ,' and a 'false cult system' . . . .
"In Hagee's latest book, Jerusalem Countdown, he calls Hitler a Catholic who murdered Jews while the Catholic Church did nothing. 'The sell-out of Catholicism to Hitler began not with the people but with the Vatican itself,' he writes. . . . "Senator Obama has repudiated the endorsement of Louis Farrakhan, another bigot. McCain should follow suit and retract his embrace of Hagee."
Whenever Bill Donohue attacks Democrats as being anti-Catholic -- during, for the instance, the grave matter of the Edwards campaign's hiring of Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan as campaign bloggers -- Donohue was ubiquitous, treated with the utmost respect. Donohue's righteous protests over John McCain's embrace of such a stark, hateful anti-Catholic bigot merit at least as much attention as the Edwards Blogger Scandal, to put it mildly.
I interviewed The Catholic League's President, Bill Donohue, regarding the McCain/Hagee connection. The write-up on the interview is here; the podcast can be heard here
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