This Week In Crazy: Never Forget Sodom And Gomorrah
Global warming is good for your lawn, Texas paranoia abounds, and we found the most adorably deranged complaint ever filed in federal court. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the wildest attacks, conspiracy theories, and other loony behavior from the increasingly unhinged right wing.
5. Ted Cruz
Last week I wrote about Lone Star State governor Greg Abbott summoning the Texas State Guard to monitor Operation Jade Helm 15 — essentially an act of capitulation to the delusional paranoia of certain constituents. And this week, that paranoia has spread even higher up the political food chain — from dissenters at a risible small town hearing all the way up to GOP presidential contender Sen. Ted Cruz.
Jade Helm 15, you may recall, is an eight-week training exercise conducted by four branches of the U.S. military. A vocal gaggle of unhinged Texans, goaded on by talk- radio hosts, think the exercise is the opening salvo in an attempt by the federal government to declare martial law in the Republic of Texas, seizing guns and letting ISIS soldiers roam rampant.
Part of the insanity can be attributed to a misreading of this map, which indicates that Texas was to play the role of hostile territory in the war games. This misunderstanding, compounded with a long-simmering mistrust of the federal government and a particular animus for the current administration, has blown up beyond anyone’s expectations and made Texas a national laughingstock.
Which brings us to Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz. Rather than throwing water on the flames, Cruz signaled his support for Abbott and his fellow kooky Texans, expressing his empathy with those who fear and hate the federal government — you know, the one he wants to lead.
“I understand the concern that’s been raised by a lot of citizens about Jade Helm,” Cruz said. “We have seen for six years a federal government disrespecting the liberty of the citizens and that produces fear. When you see a federal government that is attacking our free speech rights, our religious liberty rights, our Second Amendment rights, that produces distrust as to government.”
Video via Dave Weigel/YouTube:
4. Dr. Keith Ablow
The non-news cycle has been making hay recently of Modern Family actress Sofia Vergara’s very public and very ugly spat with her ex, Onion Crunchmagnate Nick Loeb, over who has the rights to their frozen embryos. The erst-couple is bringing new meaning to the word “classy” by waging their private little war in the court of public opinion, and opening another chapter in the perennial national conversation about abortion, reproductive rights, and the sanctity of life.
Enter Outnumbered, Fox News’ daily exercise in high-class trolling in which a male guest sits in on a roundtable of four women hosts. Dr. Keith Ablow played the dutiful Y chromosome representative on the show Tuesday to discuss his views on unborn children, which dovetailed nicely with a certain streak of men’s rights activism you sometimes hear on Fox News. (Incidentally, during one of Ablow’s previous appearances on Outnumbered, he gallantly told Michelle Obama to drop a few pounds.)
“Why would a woman’s right to decide what to do with a frozen embryo trump a man’s right every time?” he asked. “If he wants to bring these embryos to term, good for him. He wants to parent. If he wants to have them adopted, good for him. You know what, it’s not a coin toss. It’s whoever wants that potential being to survive, that’s who wins.”
Not one to quit while ahead, Ablow further clarified that he believes men have the right to “veto” abortions. “I’ve been outspoken on this,” he said. “I think men should be able to veto women’s abortions if they’re willing to care for the child after it’s born.”
Video courtesy of Fox News:
3. Jim Inhofe
Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK), whom you might recall disproved global warming by starting the world’s shortest snowball fight in the Capitol building, has opened his yap about climate change again — this time to tell us that even if carbon dioxide levels are rising (which they are), we should not cave in to “climate alarmists,” rather we should be grateful. See, it turns out CO2 is good for the environment.
Inhofe took to the Senate floor Wednesday to insist that “increasing observations suggest a much-reduced and practically harmless climate response to increased amounts of atmospheric carbon dioxide.” In fact, he continued, “increased carbon… has led to a greening of the planet and contributed to increased agricultural productivity.” (Video, courtesy of Raw Story, is below.)
Carbon pollution, in other words, is nothing to be concerned about. We should celebrate our greenification of Gaia by rolling around in the fresh grass and congratulating ourselves for not letting the fear-mongering federal government rule our lives. Hurrah.
Now, it would be one thing if Inhofe were just another climate crank, but unfortunately for anyone who lives on this planet, he is chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and, as we’ve noted before, one of the worst climate-change deniers out there. Previously, he described global warming as the “greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people,” compared An Inconvenient Truth to Mein Kampf, and insisted that climate change is impossible because, after all, “God’s still up there,”
“CO2 is a fertilizer,” Inhofe said Wednesday. “It is something you can’t do without. No one ever talks about the benefits that people are inducing from that as a fertilizer on a daily basis.”
2. Pamela Geller
In one respect, the shooting in Garland, Texas targeting the Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest was the best thing that could have happened to Pamela Geller, the event’s organizer. Suddenly her nasty little exercise in Muslim baiting became yet another touchstone for free expression under fire, and Geller herself got invited to broadcast her provocative brand of idiocy on several talk shows. But rather than rallying around her as a martyr for free speech, conservative hosts took Geller to task for her needlessly incendiary behavior.
On her Wednesday show, Laura Ingraham (no stranger to This Week In Crazy) opened a can of cold hard sanity on Geller, chastising her for going out of her way to mock religion, saying it has done nothing to advance the conservative cause.
Sean Hannity brought Geller on his show so she could get into a zero-sum screaming match with the extremely conservative Muslim cleric Anjem Choudary, the “radical London imam” Hannity rolls out whenever he needs a straw man. (Nobody to root for there, really.)
Bill O’Reilly asserted, “Insulting the entire Muslim world is stupid!” and even Donald Trump said the cartoons were just plain “DUMB.”
“The U.S. has enough problems without publicity seekers going out and openly mocking religion in order to provoke attacks and death,” Trump tweeted.
Geller, the president of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, has stirred this particular pot before, purchasing Islamophobic ads in the NYC subway and blogging tirelessly about her crusade against the forthcoming “Islamic takeover.”
Taken to task by just about everyone from all over the political spectrum, Geller finally lost it on Martha MacCallum’s show Tuesday.
After MacCallum played a clip of Catholic League president Bill Donohue calling Geller out, she snapped: “There’s a war going on! I mean what would he have said about Rosa Parks? ‘Rosa Parks should never have gone to the front of the bus. She’s taunting people’?”
Yes, Geller, in her single-minded quest to provoke the ire of Muslims (or “savages,” as she calls them), has likened herself to civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks. Watch the video from the show below.
1. Sylvia Ann Driskell
A humble Nebraska woman is suing every single gay person in the country, and in doing so has risen above the mire of kooks that populate the political-media landscape to assume my #1 spot this week.
Sylvia Ann Driskell, identifying herself as the ambassador for “God and His, Son, [sic] Jesus Christ,” filed a complaint in federal court on Their behalf last week, naming as defendants, simply, “Homosexuals.”
In what is unquestionably a new high for penmanship and a new low for humanity, Driskell composed her seven-page complaint of utter nonsense entirely in exquisite cursive script. In her capacity as Plaintiffs’ ambassador, she fails to cite any statutes or court decisions that would bolster Their case. However, she does invoke the books of Leviticus, Proverbs, Romans, Isaiah, Genesis, and Webster’s Dictionary, which she uses to help her define words like “sin” and “parent,” but apparently not to help her spell tricky words like “and.”
“Your Honor,” she writes, “I’ve heard the boasting of the Defendant: the Homosexuals on the world news from the Young, to the Old; to the rich an famous [sic], and to the not so rich an famous [sic].”
In the conclusion of her complaint, the 66-year-old Driskell begs the court to rule against all homosexuals, because to permit their “lewd” behavior would be to invite Plaintiffs’ wrath.
“Never before has Our Great Nation the United State [sic] of America our great State of Nebraska; [sic] been besiege [sic] by sin,” she writes. “The way to destroy any Nation, or State is to destroy its morals; Look what happen [sic] to Sodom and Gomorrah two city because of the same immoral behavior thats [sic] present in Our Nation, in Our States, and our cities; God destroy them.”
Read the full complaint here.
Photo above: Kentucky Photo File via Flickr