This Week In Crazy: Hear A White Supremacist’s Advice For Trump

This Week In Crazy: Hear A White Supremacist’s Advice For Trump

The Religious Right civil war, the devil’s in the “no-fly” list, and a white supremacist tells Trump exactly how to “Make America Great Again.” Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Frank Amedia

The man Trump tapped to be his Christian policy advisor doesn’t quite know if Barack Obama was born in the United States, saying that such inscrutable questions were “above my pay grade.”

In an interview with Alan Colmes Tuesday, flagged by Buzzfeed, Frank Amedia dismissed the notion that his orange godhead candidate had been the slightest bit racist when he propelled himself top of the fringe nutter trashheap back in 2011 on a contrail of birther nonsense. “I think that we’re too quick to put the race card on everything, we should be careful with that,” Amedia said.

When Colmes asked if Obama was born in this country, Amedia feinted: “That’s so far above my pay grade,” he said.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Buzzfeed

Next: Bryan Fischer 

4. Bryan Fischer

Bryan Fischer, perennial TWIC favorite and proverbial angry old man in residence at the American Family Association, is at it again. “It” being disgorging whatever septic cocktail of Old Testament wrath and cranky Dixiecratic paranoia he has brewed up this week.

On his radio show this week Fischer explicitly likened the effort by a bipartisan coalition of senators to pass legislation that would forbid anyone on the no-fly list from purchasing a gun to the machinations of Satan himself.

“That’s exactly how Satan works,” Fischer said. “That’s how he deceives us. He never tells us, ‘Look, if you do this thing I’m dangling in front of you, it’ll destroy you.’ He never says that because he knows we wouldn’t go for it.”

In pushing for “No fly, no buy” Democrats were not literally being Satan, he clarified — he just wants us to know that “this is how Satan works.” Fischer wouldn’t want us to think he’s nuts or anything.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Rush Limbaugh 

3. Rush Limbaugh

But enough about amending our laws, which currently make it laughably easy for anyone to pick up a gun and start firing in a crowded place. The real problem is Sharia law, Limbaugh helpfully explained on his show.

“If Obama, if the president of the United States is serious about using the law to stop acts of terror, such as what happened in the gay bar in Orlando, then he had better try to change Sharia law, because that’s the only law those people listen to. They don’t care about U.S. law. And no criminal does,” Limbaugh said.

There’s a tired illogic to this idea that making it more difficult to buy a gun wouldn’t, you know, make it more difficult to buy a gun. And Limbaugh’s sly insinuation that Obama has some kind of jurisdiction over Sharia law is pretty old hat.

Rush is starting to sound like his own worst tribute band. Just a friendly reminder, Rush, that your sponsors are fleeing you in droves — and why shouldn’t they, when the median age of your listeners hovers around 70 and you can’t even be bothered to cook up fresh nonsense for them?

Next: Jared Taylor

2. Jared Taylor

Jared Taylor, fervent Trump enthusiast and the face of well-scrubbed American white supremacists, reminded us that what Americans really long for, and hope to return to under a Trump presidency, are the good old days of Jim Crow.

In an open address to Donald Trump, dredged up by the blog Hail to the Gynocracy, which tracks the white supremacist “alt-right,” Taylor encourages the GOP’s presumptive nominee to deport all illegals and “take a hard look at” Muslim Americans.

“Mr. Trump, your campaign slogan is ‘Make America Great Again.’ I have bad news: You can’t make America great with a Third World population,” he declared.

He says that while, sure, white people want their jobs, “what they really want is their country back. The country they had in 1964.” As in, before the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act. When things were “Great,” like the baseball cap sez.

Taylor, whose American Renaissance webzine is a cesspit of pseudoscience proclaiming the supremacy of the white race, once expressed his enthusiasm for a President Trump in an interivew. Trump’s elevation to the Oval Office, he said, would be “extremely useful to us.”

Read more gems at HTTG and watch the video below.

Hat tip and video courtesy of Hail to the Gynocracy

Next: Religious Right Can’t Deal With Trump

1. Religious Right Civil War

One of the small pleasures of the election has been watching the great minds of the Religious Right twist themselves into knots making a tepid peace with the crass and blatantly secular Trump.

Despite his naked and incompetent pandering to the conservative Christian movement (“Two Corinthians”), more and more evangelical figureheads are exposing themselves for the craven and feckless stooges they are by turning tail and voicing their mealy-mouthed support for the thrice-divorced Orange Julius in a red cap.

So it was this week when Trump summoned evangelical leaders to New York in order to convince them that he was their guy. Tony Perkins, virulently anti-gay leader of the Family Research Council, was charmed by Mr. Trump, writing in a blog post that “one thing Trump and social conservatives do have in common is the shared experience of being the target of vicious and often vile attacks from the Left for refusing to surrender to the terms of political correctness.” It’s true that Trump as well as Perkins and his FRC ilk are often criticized from the left. Espousing retrograde beliefs that consistently demean other people will reliably attract that kind of “attack.” Perkins added that he hoped this “ongoing conversation” between Trump and evangelicals “results in a concrete plan to protect the values we hold dear.”

Not everyone on the Religious Right can stomach Trump, of course. Glenn Beck, the #NeverTrump stalwart, who once averred that God killed Antonin Scalia in order to pave the way for President Ted Cruz, posted a lament on Facebook in which he even called out Trump for his reprehensibly hypocritical tack of trying to debunk Clinton’s religion: “For leaders to endorse and tolerate the lecture of ‘no evidence that Hillary is a Christian’ is obscene,” he wrote.

Michael Farris, writing in the Christian Post, was more blunt: “This meeting [with Trump] marks the end of the Christian Right.” He added: “In 1980 I believed that Christians could dramatically influence politics. Today, we see politics fully influencing a thousand Christian leaders.”

“This is a day of mourning,” he concluded.

Pass the popcorn.

Image: DonkeyHotey

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

PhotoUniversity of the Philippines students display glasses with lit candles and a placard as a tribute to those killed in the Pulse nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, during a protest at the school campus in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines June 14, 2016.   REUTERS/Erik De Castro

This Week In Crazy: Or, How Not To Respond To A Tragedy

This Week In Crazy: Or, How Not To Respond To A Tragedy

When 49 people were massacred in a gay nightclub in Orlando last weekend, the vast majority of Americans responded with outrage, sympathy, and resolve to do better. And then there were these people. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Rush Limbaugh

Rush Limbaugh rode close on the coattails of his Cheeto-hued demigod when he insinuated on his show that President Obama was working in concert with Islamic terrorists. (Trump, you’ll recall, suggested that Obama was aligned with the terrorists during a call-in interview on Fox & Friends shortly after the attack.)

Limbaugh took to his microphone Tuesday to accuse the president of behaving like the terrorists’ “defense lawyer,” who “speak[s] on behalf of their clients,” simply because he pointed out to his critics that using the words “radical Islam” doesn’t actually do anything productive.

Limbaugh said:

When I saw him go into this protracted two-and-a-half minute segment on why it is irrelevant to call ’em militant Islamists and why he doesn’t use the term because it doesn’t any strategic value, you know what the guy sounded like?  Honestly, and this is… I don’t know.

It sounds to me like it’s the way defense lawyers talk.  You know, when there’s a suspect, you got a defense lawyer saying, “Well, there’s no conclusive evidence here.  We’re still looking for a motive.  We haven’t found the right motive.”  Obama comes out after every one of these things, every one of these events, and Obama ends up sounding like defense lawyers speaking on behalf of their clients.

Video and hat tip Daily RushBo

Next: Rick Wiles 

4. Rick Wiles

Insane preacher Rick Wiles thinks the Orlando attack was God’s judgment on America because of course he does.

The TruNews host and occasional tourist to this plane we call reality enjoined Americans to get on their knees (no, actually). “I’ve said for years, America, if you continue to reject the mercy of the cross, you will live by the tyranny of the sword, and that’s what’s happening right now,” he said.

Wiles, of course, is more than a little allergic to reason and common sense. He previously said that Bernie Sanders would somehow “use global warming to impose global socialism” and then “take control of property, eliminate private property rights, [and] take control of natural resources.”

He likes to call the president “Jihad Barry” and accuse him of leading an “Islamic invasion of America.” Wiles also posited that Obama was responsible for the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, whom he apparently murdered as part of some pagan festival to mark the beginning of Lupercalia. Oh, and he thought Ebola was a good cure for homosexuality and atheism.

So, grain of salt and all that.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Joseph Farah 

3. Joseph Farah

A conservative columnist who’s too afraid to type the word “gay” without scare quotes has some insightful ideas about gay identity in America.

“My strong advice to the LGBT community is to add another “G” to their identity – for GUNS,” writes Joseph Farah

In his column filed this week (in which he hilariously buffers the word “gay” with quotation marks throughout, as if he cannot handle even the notion of being “gay” without the typographical equivalent of surgical gloves), Farah writes:

“Gays” have demonstrated their effectiveness at defending their “rights” to do with their bodies as they please. Now it’s time for “gays” to defend their right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Managers of bars and nightclubs catering to “gays” should exercise some social responsibility and provide more protection for their clientele.

If there’s as much “homophobia” as we keep hearing about in America, why don’t “gays” and “gay” establishments take security into consideration?

I don’t know what Farah “thinks” nightclubs are “for.” Or if he’s ever “danced” in his “life.” But “packing heat” probably isn’t conducive to a “good” club-going “experience.” And maybe just “maybe” people deserve the right to exist and live and love in this country without having to worry about being slaughtered like chattel anytime they enter a club, movie theater, or elementary school classroom.

Next: Pat Robertson 

2. Pat Robertson

Gays and Muslims should just kill each other, according to semi-sentient wax-encrusted automata and host of The 700Club, Pat Robertson.

The fervently anti-gay, anti-reason, anti-Muslim Robertson rubbed his two remaining neurons together and dished that liberals were caught in a conundrum, since they supported both “homosexuals” and Muslims, who, he averred, wanted to kill “homosexuals.” What’s a lib to do?

“The left is having a dilemma of ma,jor proportions and I think for those of us who disagree with some of their policies, the best thing to do is to sit on the sidelines and let them kill themselves,” he said.

Man, you know Robertson has gone far afield of even his craziest handlers when the Christian Broadcasting Network has to issue a statement clarifying what Robertson’s definition of “kill” is. (Though, as of this writing, that statement has itself been taken down, so who knows. Maybe he did want mean “kill” to actually mean… kill.)

I don’t recall any such clarification when he said that miscarried babies are God’s deliverance from future Hitlers, that anorexia should be treated like a case of demonic possession, or that marriage equality will lead to Christians being forced into sodomy. I suppose you have to choose your battles.

Hat tip and video courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: James David Manning

1. James David Manning

Imagine, if you will, exactly what kind of flaming, fetid sewage fire of a human being you have to be to a.) support Donald Trump in the first place, and then b.) disavow your support if and only if he makes some conciliatory gesture towards the LGBT community (as hollow as that gesture was).

Such a person is James David Manning, the self-proclaimed “sodomite slayer” pastor from Harlem who came out in favor of Donald Trump last December only to withdraw his support this week following Trump’s proclamation that he would be “friend of the gays.”

Manning justified his about-face by saying (multiple times) “Sodomy is more dangerous to America than radical Islam”

On the other hand, the tragedy in Orlando brought out of the woodwork several radical Religious Right activists who sounded their hypocritical and hollow sympathies, apparently forgetting the years they spent lobbying against the full and equal rights of LGBT Americans. Manning’s solidarity with his own rotten views is refreshingly honest, if contemptible.

Photo: University of the Philippines students display glasses with lit candles and a placard as a tribute to those killed in the Pulse nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, during a protest at the school campus in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines June 14, 2016.   REUTERS/Erik De Castro

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

PhotoUniversity of the Philippines students display glasses with lit candles and a placard as a tribute to those killed in the Pulse nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, during a protest at the school campus in Quezon city, Metro Manila, Philippines June 14, 2016.   REUTERS/Erik De Castro

This Week In Crazy: GOP Makes Its Bed With Trump

This Week In Crazy: GOP Makes Its Bed With Trump

The satanic Switzerland tunnel, the classic it’s-not-Trump-it’s-you racism feint, and the Republicans’ devils bargain with the Donald. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Jeffrey Lord

Watching Trump supporters have to answer for their orange demigod’s insane and hateful behavior on live cable news has been one of the peculiar pleasures of this election cycle. Under the scrutiny (more or less) of TV anchors, we’ve gotten to see any number of Trump apologists squirm, equivocate, evade, and outright lie through their damn teeth.

In this nascent, but flourishing tradition, we may have just gotten our masterpiece: a f of an interview, as CNN’s resident Trump mouthpiece Jeffrey Lord melted down this week in spectacular fashion. Lord ultimately opted to go with the ever reliable kindergarten rhetorical maneuver “I am rubber, you are glue” in the matter of Trump’s incendiary remarks that District Judge Gonzalo Curiel was unfit to preside over the Trump University case because of his Mexican heritage.

Responding to House Speaker Paul Ryan’s assertion that Trump had been racist, Lord, in turn, exhibiting an utter lack of creativity, called Ryan a racist.

“Speaker Ryan has apparently switched positions and is supporting identity politics, which is racist. I am astonished,” faux-outrage machine Jeffrey Lord said on CNN Tuesday.

“You’re accusing Paul Ryan of racism?” host Carol Costello asked.

“I am accusing anybody who believes in identity politics, which he apparently now does, of playing the race card,” he responded, and proceeded to accuse the entire Republican establishment, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, of also being racist.

You see, in Lordlandia, when you call out someone for being racist, you are playing the “race card,” and that is the real racism. Or something.

Video courtesy of Media Matters

Next: Sean Hannity 

4. Sean Hannity

But maybe I’m being too hard on Lord. After all, the he-who-smelt-it-dealt-it-approach to calling Trump out on his racism was being played all throughout the Trump sycophant cosmos.

Take for instance, Trump’s fawning fangirl-in-chief Sean Hannity, who has made a habit of massively evacuating himself of dignity in a series of greasy, fawning interviews with the Donald for months now. When he isn’t presumably mailing the presumptive GOP nominee locks of his hair enclosed in handwritten sonnets, Hannity is going to bat for him on the air like the obedient horsewhipped acolyte he is.

Speaking to the whole Judge Curiel kerfuffle on his radio show Tuesday, Hannity shot back at Trump’s detractors, sounding like nothing so much as a spiteful four-year-old defending his daddy’s honor from schoolyard bullies.

He insisted that Judge Curiel should have recused himself, before launching into a buffet of false equivalence, accusing the left of “selective moral outrage” in their failure to condemn President Obama’s “radical past” and even went so far as to call the president a racist himself, saying:

I didn’t hear Paul Ryan talk about Reverend Wright being racist, I didn’t hear Paul Ryan making the case that somebody that hangs out with, gave speeches with,sits on boards with and starts his political career in the home of a domestic — unrepentant domestic terrorist isn’t fit for the job. I didn’t hear Lindsey Graham make that case either and it was his buddy John McCain running at the time.

Anything that they can do; I didn’t see the stuff in his two books Audacity of Hope or Dreams of My Father, “white man’s greed runs the world in need” Obama said? Is that worse than Trump’s comments? Everybody’s got selective moral outrage. Everybody’s all offended by words but it only depends on who utters the words that offends them. Because they’ll make all sorts of excuses, time and time again, if they don’t want to pick that particular political fight.

Somewhere, surely, the Donald is tossing Sean a treat.

Audio courtesy of Media Matters

Next: Dennis Prager 

3. Dennis Prager

In his syndicated column published Tuesday, Dennis Prager accused Bernie Sanders of being both a false Jew and a false American.

He writes:

In Sanders’ speeches and interviews, there is virtually no mention of his being a Jew (unless he’s asked about it), and — what’s truly amazing for an American presidential candidate — there are few mentions of America, except to lament American inequality, Wall Street corruption and other American evils.

It is true that, unlike the preening pandering from conservative Christian neotheocrat Republicans, Sanders has kept his religion more or less off the table. Though he has spoken often and emphatically that he believes in a spiritual mandate to improve life for our fellow man — a point he made perhaps most powerfully at a bridge-building speech at Liberty University.

Apparently that’s not good enough for Prager, who appoints himself arbiter of who is and who is not Jewish enough based on the number of times they flaunt their religiosity. He aligns Sanders with other “radical non-Jewish Jews” like George Soros and Noam Chomsky, whose spiritual failings (in Prager’s estimation) lead to immoral political actions.

[N]on-Jewish Jews are far more likely to work to weaken Christianity in America than Jewish Jews, especially religious Jews. Religious Jews celebrate religious Christians. The same holds true for American non-Jews who have rejected any identification with Christianity, many of whom in fact seek to weaken Christian influence and identity in America.

He concludes that “the radical non-Jewish Jew and the radical non-American American… hurt real humans, especially Jews and Americans.”

There you have it. If a Jew does not meet the minimum threshold on the Prager Jew Criterion Index, you actively weaken America and cause injury to other Jews.

Next: Who’s afraid of a little modern dance? 

2. Conservatives Scared of Performance Art

Switzerland marked the occasion of the opening of the largest and deepest tunnel in the world with a ceremony that included “an extended modern dance sequence — featuring stony-faced dancers dressed in orange construction gear and boots, dancing on and around a flatcar. Another sequence featured dancers in white briefs and one figure with wings and an oversize head, while yet another sequence had people covered in suits resembling a cross between a pompom and a hay bale,” according to NPR.

But if you’re a conservative Christian, it was nothing less than a godless carnival of the damned, an oblation to demonic demigods, a harbinger of a global decline in moral values, and a wake-up call to god-fearing Christians that they are coming under assault.

Charisma had the courage to ask: “Was the Gotthard Base Tunnel Opening Ceremony an Illuminati Ritual Intended to Honor Satan?” Michael Snyder writes from the comfort of the nest under his bed:

For a very long time, global secret societies have conducted their dark rituals out of the view of the general public, but we appear to have entered a time when they are becoming much bolder.

These days, we are seeing these sorts of “Illuminati rituals” just about everywhere. We have seen them regularly at major awards shows, in music videos, in television shows and movies, and even at the Super Bowl.

So why do these same themes keep popping up over and over again?

Darkness is rising, and it isn’t going to be satisfied until it has gripped the entire planet. And at this point the elite have become so bold that they aren’t even hiding what they plan to do to us anymore.

In a column published this week in WND, Leo Hohmann spoke to at least one Christian author who said the dance was a harbinger of the apocalypse. “In watching this ‘dedication ceremony,’ one can almost imagine what the streets of Sodom must have looked like in the days of Lot,” Florida pastor Carl Gallups said.

And of course there’s Joel Richardson, author of “When A Jew Rules the World,” who told Hohmann that “The decay of popular Western culture continues at a rapid pace,” and that this was precisely the End Times chaos that Paul the Apostle warned about.

Everyone’s a critic.

Next: Michael Savage

1. Michael Savage

With no small competition, Michael Savage still manages to come out on top in the conspiracy crankery race among radio shock jocks.

On his program this week, he spun another one of his exhaustive fantasias about how President Obama had been raised since birth to conquer America. He had been “polished very carefully for many years as a candidate for the left” in order “to invade America and convert us into a semi-socialist, semi-communist nation,” Savage said.

His invasion will of course be stewarded by a coalition of roving mobs, financed by George Soros naturally. Savage has been whistling this theme about nonwhite  “street thugs” overthrowing the nation for some time now, or as he once called them, the “Army of the Night.”

They will be able to do this because, of course, Hillary Clinton will come to take your guns. (Another recurring motif of his.)

Savage said (as quoted by Right Wing Watch):

“One, guns will be taken away, she will make it illegal either through ammunition or registration, your guns will be seized, guns will be criminalized,” he said. “Two, she will criminalize speech, talk radio will disappear, she will pass it under the guise of the Fairness and Communications Act, and I will be gone, as will everyone else who dares to speak the truth to these left-wing fanatic vermin. That’s number two. If you think the internet will be your refuge, you are mistaken. Hillary Clinton and her illegitimate cohorts will criminalize the internet as has been done in Europe under the dictator Merkel and as it is being done around the world by the greedy pig who owns Facebook.”

“It’s either Trump or nothing, we have nothing left,” he concluded.

Savage: doing his small part to make America grate again (and again).

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch


Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

This Week In Crazy: Driverless Cars Were Invented to Kill Conservatives

This Week In Crazy: Driverless Cars Were Invented to Kill Conservatives

Driverless cars may not be for you if you have a conservative bumper sticker and don’t wish to be driven off the road by a malevolent computer programmed by spiteful liberals. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Pat Buchanan

Erstwhile conservative presidential candidate Pat Buchanan is, at least, being as honest and up front as he physically can be when he calls Donald Trump “The Great White Hope.”

In his syndicated column published May 26, Buchanan writes that Trump is the panacea for all of the country’s ills, among which he counts the emphasis on “diversity,” affirmative action, the disparaging way white working-class males are portrayed in Hollywood films, and the fact that we teach schoolchildren about how this nation was “discovered” by people who occasionally practiced slavery and genocide.

In other words, the demonization of white men is the root of all of our problems, and it has utterly corroded our nation’s most pure soul. To bolster his point, Buchanan notes (correctly, I’m afraid) that “Lincoln and every president had been a white male.” Until Obama, of course. Check mate, liberals.

He concludes:

“Angry white male” is now an acceptable slur in culture and politics. So it is that people of that derided ethnicity, race, and gender see in Donald Trump someone who unapologetically berates and mocks the elites who have dispossessed them, and who despise them.

Is it any surprise that militant anti-government groups attract white males? Is it so surprising that the Donald today, like Jess Willardcentury ago, is seen by millions as “The Great White Hope”?

Next: Rush Limbaugh

4. Rush Limbaugh

Limbaugh, like everyone else, had an opinion about the incident in a Cincinnati zoo that left a gorilla dead.

Limbaugh being Limbaugh, he used it as a springboard to tear into some other, tangentially-related issue that his frenzied detonation of neurons were screaming about at that moment. To wit: the Theory of Evolution, which holds that all species — including whatever humanoid aberration Limbaugh represents — can trace their origin back to a single-celled ancestor.

Limbaugh said in his show Tuesday:

A lot of people think that all of us used to be gorillas. And they’re looking for the missing link out there. The evolution crowd. They think we were originally apes. I’ve always — if we were the original apes, then how come Harambe is still an ape, and how come he didn’t become one of us? “Well, that’s why were looking for the missing link, Mr. Limbaugh, your question is absurd.”

Politico reported recently that Limbaugh’s business is in turmoil because of a series of terrible calls that have alienated advertisers and affiliates (like calling a Georgetown Law student a “slut” in 2012). Maybe if he sticks to hot-button issues like whether or not evolution is real, he’ll offend fewer people. Doesn’t make him any less of a fool.

Next: Brent Smith

3. Brent Smith

There may be valid arguments against driverless cars, but I’m not sure I saw any in the column from Brent Smith’s tittering tin foil dispatch in WND this week.

Smith maintains that driverless cars are a bad idea because they are built by companies that are controlled mainly by liberals. Liberals will be tasked with writing the code that determines the car’s protocols for decision making; its “morality,” in other words.  And you know you can’t trust liberals to determine the morality of the four-wheeled death machine you use to get to Golden Corral.

So the morality of a driverless car, for want of a better term, is and will be determined by geeks at Google and Microsoft and Apple. What do we know of these individuals? Maybe not much except that 99.8 percent of them are lefties.

As a demonstrable conservative, this scares me. Are these the same liberals who write algorithms that limit access or exposure of conservatives on the Internet? Who’s to say some programmer won’t build in a conservative kill code into the car’s CPU that causes it to drive off a bridge or run it into oncoming traffic?

He also not-entirely-insincerely suggests that liberals could use the technology as a way to literally murder conservatives.

How could a car know if you’re liberal or conservative – I mean other than that Bernie Sanders bumper sticker? These cars, like a lot of things, will eventually have electronic I.D. like a fingerprint scanner. Within five seconds of scanning your fingerprint, that car will know your voting record and which sites you visit on the web. That’s when the secret algorithm is activated, and it’s bye-bye right-winger!

Smith, whose previous scoops include “Trump Will Just Be A Better Dictator Than Obama” and a screed against electric cars for being anti-American, wraps up by trying to pass off his idle paranoid fantasia as “just a fun conspiracy theory.”

“You’re probably saying to yourself – this guy is nuts,” he writes.

I’ve seen nuttier, but all things considered, I’d rather not share the road with him.

Next: Larry Pratt

2. Larry Pratt

Larry Pratt, executive director emeritus of the lobbying group Gun Owners of America, would much rather solve problems at the ballot box — but, you know, if he has to, he could just shoot you.

That’s basically what he said on his “Gun Owners News Hour” radio program this weekend, arguing that it was vital for Republicans to elect a conservative president who would make a number of vital Supreme Court appointments. But if that fails, there’s always the “bullet box,” which could be interpreted as a large cache of ammunition, or maybe just a coffin, I suppose. In any event, the people who beat him at the ballot box probably don’t want to find out.

It will surprise no one that Pratt is a purveyor of Obama conspiracy theories and a fervent cheerleader for Cliven Bundy.

Right Wing Watch‘s Miranda Blue writes:

Pratt was interviewing Robert Knight, a senior fellow at the American Civil Rights Union, who warned that “if a liberal Democrat is elected president, then there goes the Supreme Court, it could be two, three, four justices, and I think the Second Amendment would be in great peril if that happens.”

Pratt responded that if such a court interprets the Constitution in ways that conservatives don’t like, they may have to restore “proper constitutional balance” through the “bullet box”

“And at that point, we would have to come to an understanding, which we’ve been sort of taught, it’s been taught out of us, that the courts do not have the last word on what the Constitution is,” Pratt said. “They decide particular cases, they don’t make law. Their decisions, unlike the Roe v. Wade usurpation, don’t extend to the whole of society, they’re not supposed to. And we may have to reassert that proper constitutional balance, and it may not be pretty. So, I’d much rather have an election where we solve this matter at the ballot box than have to resort to the bullet box.”

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Roy Moore

1.Roy Moore

In the latest twist in his long, warped crusade against gay rights, Alabama’s suspended chief jurist Roy Moore has filed suit against the state ethics board that kicked him off the bench.

Here’s some background on Moore’s little holy war. Moore ignored a January 2015 federal court ruling that found Alabama’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional and ordered probate judges not to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. When the Supreme Court made its landmark ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges in June 2015, that should have settled the issue. (Really, the federal court ruling should have settled the issue, but we’ll move on.)

In an interview last July, Moore spoke with characteristic good sense when he said it’s “not time to secede” from the nation just yet (oh, thank goodness)— but he maintained that officers of the court do have to “take a stand” and not “obey an unlawful order.” In his defense, he invoked the Nuremberg logic that Nazi soldiers had the duty to honor a “higher law” than what their superiors told them. In another earlier interview, this one with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, he invoked the Dred Scott decision, checking off another box on the list of spurious conservative comparison cliches.

Since the Obergefell ruling, Moore has performed all kinds of legalistic gymnastics to try to get out of having to allow gay marriage, which I’ve written about on this page before.

Finally, earlier this month, he was suspended by the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission, who wrote in their complaint that “Moore flagrantly disregarded and abused his authority. Moore knowingly ordered (probate judges) to commit violations … knowingly subjecting them to potential prosecution and removal from office.”

And now Moore has filed suit against said commission, demanding that the ethics charges be dropped and his place on the state’s highest judicial seat be reinstated. He is represented in his action by Mat Staver, who also represented Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis in her own little legal tussle with progress last year.

“We are asking the federal court to strike down the automatic removal provision in the Alabama State Constitution and we are asking that Chief Justice Moore be immediately reinstated,” Staver said.

I’ll say this about Moore: The guy does not quit.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: Thank A White Man Today

This Week In Crazy: Thank A White Man Today

The post-campaign follies of Glenn Beck, the “imams of sexual sharia,” and the sad fact that white men just get no respect. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Roger Stone

Speaking to InfoWars host Alex Jones Tuesday, Trump’s master of darkness Roger Stone sounded off on what voters can expect from Trump’s VP pick.

Whoever it was, Stone said, they would be a “nationalist, not a globalist” and someone “who shared Donald Trump’s views on a cross-section of issues.” None of that is especially surprising, but Stone’s adamantine insistence that Trump will be making the decision without respect to the input of any experts or advisers is disconcerting in a familiar way.

As combustible and irrational as he is, Trump can be counted on to always act by fiat. Stone asserted that Trump’s campaign manager and lawyers would not be making the decision. “Only one person knows what Trump is going to do, and that’s Trump,” Stone said,

Stone might be more out of the loop than he lets on, though, as he floated New Mexico Gov. Susan Martinez as a potential Veep just as Trump, ever thick-skinned and secure in his power, shot down the Republican governor for “not doing her job,” simply because — many speculated — she had not yet endorsed him.

“That’s exciting, it’s also common sense,” Jones said.

Just one week ago, Stone insisted that President Trump should pull CNN off the air, a stance that I’m sure has nothing at all to do with the fact that the news network has banned Stone from appearing on it because of his history of inflammatory, racist tweets.

It’s very nice of Jones to keep letting Stone on his show to peddle his wares: Note the background image — Stone has a new book to sell. But I think Media Matters‘ Brennan Suen has it right when he writes;

Stone is not a typical political adviser, and when the press treats him as one they miss out on a key election story: the extremism of Trump’s supporters. Stone’s decades-long history of dirty tricks includes playing a role in Watergate that later caused him to be fired from a job in the Senate. He has a record of racist and misogynistic rhetoric that caused MSNBC and CNN to ban him from their networks. Stone also regularly calls for public figures to be executed.

So maybe it is a good thing Trump doesn’t listen to his advisers.

Next: Glenn Beck

4. Glenn Beck

You kinda have to feel sorry for Glenn Beck, militant supporter of loser Ted Cruz and captain of the floundering ship TheBlaze.

It seems clear now that the incident in late April when Beck mashed his face into a bowl of Cheeto crumbs to make some kind of point should have been taken as an early indicator that all was not well in Becklandia.

This week he was caught rolling back on his own insane conspiracy theories just as soon as he said them aloud. He aired a notion on his radio show Wednesday that Obama was intentionally allowing the investigations into Clinton’s emails to proceed in an attempt to derail her because Clinton is not enough of a radical to carry out Obama’s long-term Marxist agenda.

“I think it’s wrong,” he said of the thing he was saying just then on his own show. Nevertheless, he added: “I think you could make a case, a bad case, that he’s looking for an ideologue to replace him. He’s done the work of bringing this country to the brink of Marxism and he’s not going to have it flushed away by Hillary Clinton.”

Poor Glenn doesn’t even have the conviction of his own confetti-headed notions anymore. If Beck can’t at least be relied upon to believe his grand conspiracy-laden fugues, who can?

Oh and there was the whole wondering-if-any-patriots-out-there-would-be-willing-to-step-up-to-the-plate-and-“remove”-Donald-Trump thing that arose in a discussion between Beck and his guest, author Brad Bird.

“With the feckless, spineless Congress we have, who will stand in the way of Donald Trump overstepping his constitutional authority as President?” Bird asked. “If Congress won’t remove him from office, what patriot will step up and do that? If — if — he overstates his constitutionally-granted authority I should say as president, if he oversteps that, how do we get him out of office? I don’t think there is a legal means available. I think it will be a terrible, terrible position the American people will be in to get Trump out of office, because you won’t be able to do it through Congress.”

“I would agree with you on that,” Beck said.

But I’ll say this about Beck. While other conservatives all over the map are taking their principles out behind the woodshed and lining up behind The Donald, Beck has militantly held fast to his anti-Trump position. But he’s not going to sit silent. The man has grand ambitions to devise a “100 year plan” to redeem America through the magic of conservative and libertarian values. To which I say, Godspeed, Glenn. Never change.

Next: Gavin McInnes

3.  Gavin McInnes

Vice Media founder Gavin McInnes thinks white males deserve a long overdue “thank you” for ending slavery. He also said that white males had nothing to do with beginning slavery in the first place, but he may have misspoke.

During a segment on his show late last week, McInnes lamented that Curt Schilling had been fired from ESPN for posting transphobic memes (“creeps,” McInnes called transgender people). Although he could not remember Schilling’s name (“I’m not into sports”), he sympathized with the plight of the onetime baseballer and would-be video game magnate.

His conclusion: “It really is an upside-down world. You start looking at the data and you say: Wait a minute, I’m noticing a pattern here. Everything that is depraved and wrong and sick is good, and everything that is good we should be ashamed of.”

“White males, we built society,” McInnes exclaimed, “we separated church and state! We didn’t end slavery…I mean, sorry, we didn’t begin slavery, we ended it!

“How about a thank you?” he demanded.

Hat tip and videoHail to the Gynocracy

Next: Scottsdale, Arizona

2. Scottsdale, Arizona

The city of Scottsdale, Arizona is doing everything in its power to stifle religious freedom and religious expression. Ted Cruz would be just appalled.

Except that in this case the people seeking to exercise their First Amendment rights happen to be Satanists. So, you know, the Constitution doesn’t apply, and they can go straight to Hell.

Please note that Satanism does not refer to a worship of the literal Satan — it’s basically a doctrine for all who are opposed to arbitrary authority and celebrate individual sovereignty in the face of corrupt, illegitimate institutions (like, I don’t know, state religion). Accordingly, Satanism attracts a broad spectrum of atheists, agnostics, and basically anyone who wants to turn the tables against a conservative Christian establishment, by using the same legal machinery that the Moral Majority has abused for decades to advance its own religious agenda.

Which is pretty much exactly what happened in Scottsdale, which barred the Satanic Temple from leading a prayer at a council meeting in July, even though it had already been scheduled. The Temple is fighting back, calling the decision arbitrary and baseless. A city spokesman told reporters that only “representatives from institutions that have a substantial connection to the Scottsdale community” should be allowed to give the invocation, hence the ousting.

Friendly Atheist’s Hermant Mehta writes:

That’s not necessarily an unreasonable rule, as the [Satanic] Temple’s chapter is based in Tucson and not Scottsdale, but why did it only become an issue after the Satanists were given the green light? And doesn’t it count if some of the Temple’s members live in Scottsdale?

It sounds more like city officials feared what would happen and scrambled to find a reason to boot them from the list.

Indeed, back in March, Scottsdale’s mayor Jim Lane admitted that city officials were working to “find a clean path, one that is legal,” to bar the group from giving the invocation.

AZ Central reports:

“We’re not in the business of entertaining an invocation that makes a mockery,” Lane said. “I’m not an advocate of it, of course.”

Thousands of emails filled Scottsdale officials’ inboxes over the prayer issue this spring, and religious groups were preparing to organize in protest.

Lucien Greaves, the Satanist Temple’s national spokesperson, told Mehta in an email that the Temple was considering legal action, pending the city’s response to a number of questions. Namely, how did Scottsdale determine exactly wheat the Temple’s connection to the city was? And do they apply this level of scrutiny to anyone (a Christian, say) who wishes to give the invocation?

Or might this have been, you know, religious discrimination?

Next: Bryan Fischer 

1. Bryan Fischer

The spokesman for the American Family Association took aim at the “Gay Gestapo” in his latest blog post, published Tuesday on the AFA blog.

“The Gay Gestapo is on a mission from the Dark Lord,” Fischer writes, “to relentlessly harass, intimidate, punish, and silence every advocate of sexual normalcy. Now the deviancy cabal intends to send preachers who speak the truth about transgenderism and transvestitism to jail for two years.”

Fischer is responding in characteristically reactionary and spurious fashion to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s announcement last week that the government was introducing legislation to “help ensure transgender and other gender-diverse people can live according to their gender identity, free from discrimination, and protected from hate propaganda and hate crimes.”

The bill (which you can read here) proposes to amend an anti-discrimination statute, the Canadian Human Rights Act, to add gender identity and gender expression to the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination, a list which presently includes race, sexual orientation, sex, disability, and religion, among other grounds.

Or, in Fischer’s gloss, “Soon in Canada, it will be a crime to proclaim what the Bible and science teach about gender.” Fischer’s punting to “science” is particularly risible in light of his young earth creationist viewpoints.

I would not give Fischer points for credibility, since this is, after all, the same man who once likened erections to God’s radar alert system, or for originality, since his post is almost a paragraph-by-paragraph crib from this article in Christian Post.

But when he rhapsodizes about the “imams of sexual sharia” making sure that all good Christians like him are “appropriately chastened and punished,” well, it does make me chuckle.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: ‘Every Sexual Deviancy You Can Imagine’

This Week In Crazy: ‘Every Sexual Deviancy You Can Imagine’

The pitfalls of feminist journalism, sage hiring wisdom of Donald Trump, and the deviant sexual practices of Hillary Clinton. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Bill O’Reilly

The Fox pundit and master of ceremonies in the No Spin Zone stepped down from on high to declare what sorts of people should and should not be allowed to report on Donald Trump.

If, for instance, you are a woman (or man, for that matter) who believes in equal rights for women, you should be recused and restricted from publishing any piece of journalism on The Donald.

“She is a feminist,” O’Reilly said, referring to a New York Times reporter who co-wrote the piece examining Trump’s record of uncouth remarks and behavior around women. “Trump is a beauty contestant purveyor. Do you let a feminist report on a beauty contestant person who is now turned politician?”

He continued: “If I’m an editor and I know there is a feminist woman in my newsroom, who is brilliant because I think this woman is an excellent reporter, I don’t let her report on a guy like Trump because Trump is the antithesis of that. And so I don’t want any margin of error here, there are plenty of reporters who can do the story, do you not see that?” he asked Bob Woodward, who did not see that, in fact.

Hat tip and video courtesy Media Matters

Next: Anne Graham Lotz

4. Anne Graham Lotz

The daughter of Billy Graham, that titan of American evangelism and Godfather of the Religious Right (emphasis on the God), is keeping the family name proud.

Anna Graham Lotz spoke to Iowa talk radio host to let him know on-air that perennial conservative Christian line about how 9/11 was a warning that we shouldn’t have taken prayer out of public schools… or something.

Right Wing Watch‘s Miranda Blue writes:

If Americans repent, she said, then “there will be peace on our streets” and God will begin to “reveal the plots of our enemies and terrorists before they are carried out” and “control the weather patterns and protect us from these violent storms that are taking human life.”

She added that “God allows bad things to happen” like the September 11 attacks and the mass shooting in San Bernardino “to show us that we need Him, you know, we’re desperate without him.”

At a later point in the interview, Lotz argued that opposition to anti-LGBT legislation, like the recent law in North Carolina, which the Justice Department is fighting, was an example of “evidence that God has backed away and he’s removed His hand of blessing, favor, protection, and he’s just turning us over to ourselves.”

Next: Pamela Geller

3. Pamela Geller

Pamela Geller, enthusiast of Mohammad cartoons and incendiary anti-Muslim subway ads, recently used her tack of vile Islamophobic trolling as a springboard to bash Hillary Clinton and her “lesbian” stooge Huma Abedin.

Geller was, naturally, an early and vocal supporter of Trump’s proposals to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. and his suggestion that he would create a database to track them. Speaking on The Sid and Bernie Show, Geller weighed in on Trump’s likely opponent in the November election, accusing her of having a lesbian affair with her longtime confidant (who happens to be Muslim) Huma Abedin.

“The connection to Huma Abedin cannot be understated,” Geller said. “Her parents are Muslim Brotherhood … come on, we know all about that. For years and years I wrote about that relationship…”

“Are you implying she’s a lesbian?” one of the hosts interjected.

“…a long-rumored affair, for eight or nine years, way even before the Obama presidency!” she concluded.

Geller once likened herself to Rosa Parks because she wasn’t afraid to stick it to “savage” Muslims, so we can describe her affinity to reality as tenuous at best. And she isn’t even the only one this week to follow this line of unreasoning…

Next: Sandy Rios

2. Sandy Rios

American Family Association’s Sandy Rios and Geller must both be getting their talking points from the same listserv.

Right Wing Watch describes Rios’ own descent in to the mire of lesbian-Clinton tin-foil fantasias:

“Hillary Clinton embraces every sexual deviancy you can imagine,” she said, before once again suggesting that the former secretary of state is a lesbian because “there have been more than rumors swirling about her own sexual proclivities since before she became first lady.”

“She’s an advocate of gay marriage, and I mean a strong advocate,” she said. “She’s been endorsed by every radical homosexual activist group in the country, all the major ones, Human Rights Campaign and others, especially in New York. She gets that endorsement for a reason, you know, she gets it for a reason.”

Fittingly for an operative of the American Family Association, one of the most dogmatic and hateful anti-LGBT advocacy groups in the country, Rios has a persistent habit of reducing just about any political situation or national news story into an occasion for some gay-bashing. Hell, she even blamed an AmTrak derailment on the notion that the conductor might have been gay. And last year she told Christians to “prepare for martyrdom” in order to fight gay marriage. Needless to say, she did not take her own advice.

Next: Healy Baumgardner 

1. Healy Baumgardner

Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson is a rare talent: she exhibits adamantine poise even while defending and articulating her boss’ most vile, outlandish, and ignorant claims.

The Trump surrogate who showed up on CNN Wednesday, campaign senior press representative Healy Baumgardner, is no Katrina Pierson.

“Well, I think top line, Mr. Trump’s point is that he wants to keep an open dialogue and repair relationships with world leaders,” she said, by way of not explaining at all why her boss had been singing the praises of North Korea’s dictator.

“Healy, you can’t give us any more guidance on this?” asked a pained Carol Costello. “You are the senior press representative for Mr. Trump.”

“I am. Exactly,” she said, unfazed. “And what I’m telling you is that top line, you know, one of his biggest goals is to repair relationships with leaders throughout the world.”

That’s not a typo. Healy, like a malfunctioning Rubio, sputtered and repeated the same bromidic buzz phrase twice in a row. (“Top line” sells Trump Steaks maybe, but I’m not sure it applies to one of the most universally condemned dictators on the global stage right now.)

Later in the segment Costello pressed Baumgardner on Trump’s decision to meet with Henry Kissinger: “So Healy, I want to ask you about something else. Mr. Trump is expected to meet with Henry Kissinger, former secretary of state. […] Why Henry Kissinger and not another secretary of state?”

Costello waited. And waited. And waited. For one precious, sparkling moment, there was silence on CNN, as the three talking heads all blinked at each other across the void in quiet anticipation of a talking point that never arrived.

“Healy?” Costello asked.

“I’m sorry, was that question to me? Oh. Yes. Sorry about that. I had a little feedback,” she replied, having apparently borrowed the old “failed earpiece” gambit that served her boss so well when he initially refused to denounce David Duke. “Mr Trump regularly meets with experts and highly respected individuals. And, you know, he values their input and their feedback.” After somehow managing to work in some accidental wordplay on the word “feedback,” she returned to safety net of silence.

“And what do you suppose they’ll talk about?” Costello asked. “Do you know, Healy?”

Baumgardner sputtered for a moment before saying that she “can’t confirm or deny the meeting,” forgetting perhaps for a moment that the fact of the meeting occurring was never in question. “I do know that Mr. Trump values feedback from highly respected individuals and experts. And he will have those conversations as he deems fit.”

It was as if a hungover algorithm had been tasked with creating the most content-free sentences a human could possibly speak in the English language.

As mortifying as the CNN segment was, the real threshing came later on social media, as most everyone lined up to ridicule Baumgardner. (A video of the segment is viewable here.)

Trump loves to talk about how he will surround himself with the “best people.” What a rotten irony that a CNN segment about Trump’s poor judgment, namely, his avid support of Kim Jong-un, should become such a glaring demonstration of that very shortcoming, in his senior press representative.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: Armed And Ludicrous

This Week In Crazy: Armed And Ludicrous

Trump-mania, gun-nuttery, and the world’s scariest reality show. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Lou Dobbs

The Fox Business host, who previously was chased out of CNN for being such an overbearing anti-immigrant conspiracy nut, has turned lately into a full-throated fire-breathing pro-Trump zealot.

Randomly sample a dozen or so of Dobbs’ tweets from the past several months and behold the missives of a man on a holy mission, heedlessly sheering himself of even the most nominal pretenses of objectivity in his quest to herald the coming of The Donald. To take just one example, Dobbs suggested recently that Paul Ryan was unfit to be House Speaker for showing even the slightest reluctance to support Trump as the nominee of his party.

Eric Bolling and Sean Hannity may be smug and persistent in the oily, obsequious manner in which they roll out the carpet for Trump, but nobody matches Dobbs, whose unbridled devotion to the man resembles the frenzied, speaking-in-tongues ardor of someone who has touched the feet of God. (Seriously, just look at some of these.)

You know you’ve reached a low point in the annals of cable news bombast when Bill O’Reilly, of all people, has to be the one to bring you to task. And yet, so it was on the Factor Wednesday night when O’Reilly challenged Dobbs on his blind devotion to Trump and demanded to know if Dobbs was capable of saying anything critical about the candidate.

When Dobbs grumbled and blamed the mainstream media, O’Reilly shot back, “If he’s Jesus, how can you analyze him?”

He concluded, “According to Dobbs, Donald Trump is Jesus… And Jesus never put out his tax returns!”

Next: Ted Nugent

4. Ted Nugent

A board member for one of the most powerful and influential lobbying groups in America has suggesting that the frontrunner for the Democratic Party’s nomination for president should be shot in cold blood. That’s just kind of where we are right now.

“I got your gun control right here, bitch!” Ted Nugent wrote to Hillary Clinton in a Facebook post published Tuesday, linking to a YouTube video depicting the former secretary of state being gunned down by Bernie Sanders.

Right Wing Watch notes that “this sort of gleeful violence is nothing new to Nugent, who in a 2007 onstage rant relished the prospect of killing Clinton and then-candidate Obama,” proclaiming “Obama, he’s a piece of shit. I told him to suck on my machine gun,” while carrying two machine guns.

Nugent also told his Facebook followers that President Obama “should be tried for treason & hung. Our entire fkdup gvt [sic] must be cleansed asap,” a few short months ago. The man has long been the patron saint of American gun nuts, and of unhinged threats against people in power. Good thing he doesn’t hold any positions of influence — right?

Next: Tennessee

3. Tennessee

As some states are learning, passing anti-LGBT legislation into law can cause a real headache.

Two weeks after Tennessee passed a controversial law empowering psychologists to refuse service to gay patients under the pretense of “religious liberty,” two conventions in a row canceled their events in the Volunteer State

The Tennessean reports:

In protest of a state law they say is an affront to the profession of counseling and the worst legislation the group has tracked in decades, the American Counseling Association has canceled its annual conference scheduled for Nashville next year.

[…] For Nashville the loss of the convention at Music City Center could cost the city more than 3,000 visitors next year, $4 million in combined local and state tax revenue and a local economic impact of up to $10 million.

The American Counseling Association’s CEO said the law was “in clear violation” of the group’s ethics code. He added: “No other state has a law like Tennessee’s.”

Then the Colorado-based Centers for Spiritual Living, which had planned to hold a conference in Nashville, piled on. Its leader told The Tennessean“There are a lot of LGBTQ people that are involved in the world, period, but (also) in our organization. We did not think in the practice of openness and inclusivity that that law would serve them very well. They felt violated in the action of that, so we chose to take a principled stand. It’s against what we hold to be true and believe. We believe in the equality of all humanity.”

Next: Paul Manafort

2. Paul Manafort

Remember when people were hailing Trump’s hiring of Paul Manafort as an indication that his campaign was going to shift toward becoming more serious? Never mind!

“This is the ultimate reality show,” the campaign manager of the presumptive GOP nominee said. “It’s the presidency of the United States.”

Manafort made the dubious remarks during a Tuesday night appearance on Hardball.

He said that Trump had run “the first modern campaign in the social media era. He understood how to use earned media instead of paid media. Instead of using 30-second spots, he had a dialogue with the American people, both through his access to the media and through his campaign appearances. And he also had a vision of what the American people wanted.”

Hat tip and video courtesy of Media Matters.
Next: Troy Newman 

1. Troy Newman

There was much hand-wringing from the Religious Right when a crass, big city, philandering, secular totem like Trump all but walked off with the GOP nomination. To a purist Christian theocrat, of the sort that rallied behind Ted Cruz, Trump’s record on abortion and LGBT rights is dubious to say the least.

But just as the “establishment” and “moderate” flanks of the party are learning to swallow their poison and get behind the Donald, so too will the religious extremists. This week we got an early indicator of that shift in Troy Newman, an anti-abortion extremist and a weathervane for the sort of feeble about-face we can expect to see from the Religious Right, which is on its way to making a Devil’s bargain with Trump.

Right Wing Watch’s Miranda Blue writes:

Troy Newman, the head of Operation Rescue and a driving force behind last year’s series of videos smearing Planned Parenthood, writes today that although Donald Trump “has said and done many things that most Christians would find despicable,” he will vote for him — although not formally endorse him — in the presidential election.

Newman articulates his shift in the form of a “pithy” acronym: He supports the Donald because he will Take back the Supreme Court; Remove and Replace [ObamaCare]; Undo! [everything]; Make America Great Again [like the baseball cap sez]; Prosecute Planned Parenthood. (RWW has reposted the acronym in full here.)

That last point may be a curious one to anyone who watched Cruz inundate Trump with criticism for his stated belief that Planned Parenthood has done some “very good work for millions of women.”

But perhaps this is just another reminder that this election shall serve to make feckless hypocrites of everyone on the right who once condemned Trump: from the moderates to the extremes, everyone is getting in line behind Donald.

Hat tip Right Wing Watch

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

This Week In Crazy: ‘May God Have Mercy On Our Nation’

This Week In Crazy: ‘May God Have Mercy On Our Nation’

We are gathered here today not to mourn the death but to puzzle over the life of the Grand Old Party, laid to rest this week when a tangerine-toupeed interloper from the Big City stole the nomination from a host of social conservatives. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Tila Hubrecht

A conservative Missouri state lawmaker would like to remind women who have been raped to always look on the bright side of life.

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, while arguing in favor of a bill that would grant personhood rights to unborn fetuses — in effect, making any abortion illegal — Tila Hubrecht, a Republican in the Missouri House of Representatives said: “It is not up to us to say, ‘No, just because there was a rape, they [unborn fetuses] cannot exist.”

She continued:  “Sometimes bad things happen. Horrible things. But sometimes God can give us a silver lining through the birth of a child.”

The remarks echo those of Indiana Republican Richard Mourdock, who during his (failed) 2012 run for U.S. Senate, said that if pregnancy occurs following a rape, it should be viewed as a “gift from God.”

Ultimately, the House voted 112-36 to advance the measure. According to the Dispatch, its text states it would “protect pregnant women and unborn children by recognizing that an unborn child is a person with a right to life which cannot be deprived by state or private action without due process and equal protection of law.”

Hat tip LawNewz

Next: Bobby Knight

4. Bobby Knight

Retired basketball coach Bobby Knight bumbled back in the public eye with a series of appearances touting his support of Donald Trump in the days leading up to the decisive primary in his native Indiana.

For instance, the addled septuagenarian with a history of explosive and violent temper tantrums bragged that Trump was the “most prepared man in history” to be President of the United States. He also boasted that Trump was the only candidate who had “the guts” to drop an A-bomb on another country. (That’s what a man does, dammit.)

Speaking to CNN’s John Berman Wednesday morning, Knight was asked to address some of his candidate’s more controversial remarks — to wit, his insistence that we need to ban 1.6 billion Muslims from entering the country.

“I don’t even know what controversial means!” Knight protested. When Berman had to explain that pesky banning-all-practioners-of-a-religion thing to Knight, the coach responded, “Well that’s okay. That doesn’t really mean anything to me right now.”

He added, “We’re talking about a guy that I think can handle things far better than anything that we’ve had recently.”

And clearly Knight knows best — because he’s done his homework.

Next: Jehovah’s Witness 

3. Jehovah’s Witness

The Church of Jehovah’s Witness has upped the creep factor this week with the release of a nasty bit of propaganda: an animated short film that explains, with a silken, Disneyfied touch, just why it is all those nice gays and lesbians need to rot in hell, and what your children can do to save them.

The plot is fairly straightforward: When a little girl explains that her schoolmate Carrie drew a picture of her two happily married mothers, her mother decides to have a Teaching Moment.

“People have their own ideas about what is right and wrong,” the mom helpfully explains, “but what matters is how Jehovah feels. He wants us to be happy. And he knows what makes us happiest. That’s why he invented marriage the way he did.”

“You mean one man and one woman?” asks the credulous little cretin.

“Exactly!” says mom, who proceeds to explain that Jehovah “wants us to be his friend — and live in Paradise forever, but we have to follow his standards to get there,” explicitly likening the path to Paradise to a pre-flight security screening. You can’t bring contraband on an jetliner — and you can’t bring your dreaded, affliction of homosexuality into the Promised Land. Jehovah is nothing less than the Big Blue-Shirted TSA Man in the Sky, apparently.

This is when the little vid delivers its truly insidious punchline: Mommy leans in close to her daughter and explains that she had better go tell Carrie that “people can change,” and that she should tell her friend about “Paradise,” “the animals,” and the “Resurrection.”

And which point the #blessed heterosexual family unit proceeds to practice their talking points to save little Carrie’s soul.

Hat tip Daily Kos

Next: Pat McCrory

2. Pat McCrory

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory is not having a good week.

The anti-LGBT bill he signed into law has cost his state considerable business opportunities and at least one Bruce Springsteen concert. Even one porn site got in on the fun by blocking Tar Heel viewers from their site. Challenged to justify the law (HB2) on Megyn Kelly’s show last week, the governor blustered and was treated to a lesson from the Fox News anchor in how ladies bathrooms actually work.

And then on Wednesday the Justice Department served the state with a letter informing them that their little piece of legislation is in violation of civil rights statutes. Oh, do the indignities never end?

In a radio interview Tuesday, McCrory blew his top, raging against the gay rights agenda that has wrought such a headache for him and brought such shame upon his state.

The Human Rights Campaign, he said, was “machiavellian, man.” The incredulous governor could not understand why his anti-LGBT law was offending LGBT people. “This had nothing to do with gay and lesbian,” he said. “This had to do with privacy.”

Nonetheless, he insists that a bigot is “the farthest thing” from what he is.

Check out the audio above courtesy of The Greensboro News & Record.

Next: The Tears of the Religious Right 

1. The Tears of the Religious Right

Glenn Beck repeatedly claimed to have seen the will of God manifest itself in the candidacy of Ted Cruz. He even said that Antonin Scalia died at God’s hand, simply to show America how important it was to elect Ted Cruz. Beck was just one of a cabal of social conservatives on the #NeverTrump train which derailed in spectacular fashion this week when the Texas Senator and that guy from Ohio suspended their campaigns, clearing the field for Donald Trump to clinch the GOP nomination.

What an ignominious end to God’s chosen campaign. Social conservatives and Religious Right luminaries took to Twitter in the hours following Cruz’s implosion and the ascendance of Trump to express their frustration and bafflement and to beg for God’s aid and forgiveness in this, their moment of darkness.

A tip of the hat to Right Wing Watch’s Brian Tashman for unearthing many of these.

From TWIC favorite and American Family Association spokesman Bryan Fischer:

From Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol:

From Steve Deace, the Cruz supporter who once vowed to eunuch himself if Cruz showed weakness on the campaign trail:

Deace also posted photo evidence of himself switching party affiliation.

Todd Starnes, writing on Facebook:

But for brevity nobody can match Robert P. George, a luminary of the “religious freedom” movement:

On that, at least, George and I are whistling the same tune.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: The CIA-Beyonce Plot Revealed

This Week In Crazy: The CIA-Beyonce Plot Revealed

Extremist pastors, conspiracy mongers, and the greatest political speech since Washington. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Kevin Swanson

Remember Kevin Swanson?

He is the anti-gay, anti-women bigot who last November played host to gracious presidential candidate Ted Cruz, by vowing to smear his body in cow manure if his son turned out to be gay and then describing the state of marriage equality in America thusly: “People are carving happy faces on the sores! That’s not a nice thing to do! Don’t you dare carve happy faces on open, pussy sores!!” (Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal were also in attendance.)

Anyway, Swanson is back with the hysterical gay bashing, asserting in his radio show Wednesday that “homosexuals love each other” just like “cannibals love their victims” — that is to say, because “they taste good.”

Swanson is one of the most extreme anti-LGBT preachers and activists in America; his National Religious Liberties Conference last November, at which Cruz spoke in November, was aptly characterized by MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow as a “kill-the-gays rally,” since Swanson told his flock that gays deserve death. Cruz never really apologized for appearing at Swanson’s event, and Swanson is just one of several religious extremists in Cruz’s corner.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Curt Schilling

4. Curt Schilling

The former ESPN host has been on something of a non-apology tour lately. Following his termination from the sports network for posting anti-transgender memes on his Facebook, Schilling has been making the rounds on conservative radio to defend his actions and his beliefs. And while he’s at it, he likes to sound off on any number of conservative issues bugging him.

Schilling sat down this week for his first long-form interview since his sacking. Talking to Breitbart News Patriot Forum (aired on SiriusXM Thursday morning), Schilling averred that Hillary Clinton “should be in a maximum security prison” because her use of a private email server “was a felony.”

He won applause in the studio when he said Donald Trump was the “only [candidate] he could see in the White House,” the only caveats being his bad habit of describing women in crude terms and the fact that “I need to start seeing him act like a leader.”

Pressed on details of Clinton’s malfeasance, Schilling just kept insisting it was a felony, though he could not point to specifics. “I don’t know if it’s hubris or it’s ignorance,” he said. “I don’t care. But what she did was a felony.”

Next: Billy Corgan 

3. Billy Corgan

Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan has had it with political correctness. Speaking to conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on his InfoWars show this week, the alt-rocker went as far as to compare “social justice warriors” to the Ku Klux Klan and a cult of “Maoists.”

“Social Justice Warrior” or SJW is a (usually pejorative) term to refer to the far-left activists on college campuses or people online who proclaim their alliance with progressive causes. They can be rude, they can be unreasonable, they can go too far.

What they do not do is wage a decades-long campaign of domestic terrorism and violent disenfranchisement on their opponents, literally imprisoning and murdering people, and so forth. Which makes Corgan’s comments all the more curious.

“There’s two schools of thought,” Corgan explained. “One is they’re gone. They’re Maoists. They have the Little Red Book in their hand. You’re not gonna get them back…The only thing that’s going to adjust their ideological fixation is reality.”

Jones offered that they were not unlike the KKK in the way they used identity politics to justify their antagonism toward other people — and Corgan agreed.

“If you could go back to Selma 1932 and the Klan member spitting in some person of color’s face, don’t you think that guy thought he was right, too? … How is this any different?” Corgan asked.

Check out video of the full interview above. 

Next: Alex Jones

2. Alex Jones

But of course the only thing consistently more out of touch than Alex Jones’ guests is Alex Jones himself.

And the shock-jock-in-chief did not fail to deliver a characteristically risible and magnificently insane response to Beyoncé’s release of her visual album Lemonade. There’s plenty of meaty, well-considered criticism and discussion of this latest work on the internet, and I encourage you to read it. But Jones’ reactionary screed is less useful for what it says about Beyoncé and her music than for what it reveals about the addled inner workings of Jones’ thought process.

The radio host is insistent that Lemonade represents an insidious CIA plot and to his credit, he begins his little (well, nearly 20-minute) video monologue on the subject that confessing that the story is difficult to report because it’s “so crazy.”

Beyoncé’s latest is an example of “domestic propaganda,” bought and paid for by the intelligence community to foment “a race war.” He points to the use of “urban terrorism” imagery (a jilted Bey smashing cars with a baseball bat) as evidence supporting his claims.

This recalls the senseless outrage that Beyoncé’s “Formation” video and Super Bowl halftime performance provoked in the far-right commentariat from Jones and others, like TheBlaze’s Tomi Lahren who threw a jejune little fit, claiming that the song was alienating to white girls.

Next: Mad Ann 

1. Ann Coulter

Ann Coulter was early and vocal in her fawning support for Donald Trump.

Now that the candidate is on the verge of clinching the GOP nomination, more and more Republicans are flushing their principles and lining up behind him. But Coulter was a Trump groupie before it was cool. The only way to defend her turf as The Donald’s #1 bootlicker is to out-scream, out-crazy, and outshine everyone else with rabid, frothing support more excessive and puerile than anyone else’s.

So where others saw Trump deliver a nonsensical, rambling, self-contradictory, illiterate-in-the-ways-of-the-world speech of foreign policy Wednesday, Coulter saw literally the greatest address on the subject in 220 years.

And even though nobody ever asked, now we know exactly what Ann sees and hears when she dreams.

Illustration: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: Our Long National Nightmare

This Week In Crazy: Our Long National Nightmare

Prognostications of the apocalypse, puritanical fools, and punditocratic blowhards. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Rick Santorum

Erstwhile presidential candidate Rick Santorum has made clear that deeply felt dedication to the cause of religious liberty is strictly limited to establishing his own extremist brand of conservative Christianity as law. And his utter ignorance of Islam has not stopped him from implicating every Muslim wholesale in his condemnations of terrorism. (““Islam is not just a religion; it is also a political governing structure,” he said at the fifth GOP debate.)

The depths of his ignorance about Islam were neatly and rather pathetically laid bare recently in a confrontation with college student Hamzah Raza, which was captured on cell phone video (below). Santorum sounded his usual notes about the monolithic evils of “Sharia law,” but when asked to clarify exactly what that was — other than a convenient talking point — the former senator was unable to do so.

Raza wrote Monday in Alternet:

I asked Santorum to name the 5 foundations of Sharia, which he was unable to do. It was also difficult for him to fathom the fact that Muslim scholars across the religious spectrum have all condemned ISIS. And that ISIS does follow not a legitimate interpretation of Sharia, according to basically every Muslim in the world. Although he could not name a single Muslim scholar who supports ISIS, he still insisted that ISIS is very popular (a claim that is statistically untrue). Santorum also found it difficult to fathom the fact that religion is up to interpretation. 

Hat tip Raw Story

Next: Rick Wiles & Mark Taylor 

4. Rick Wiles & Mark Taylor

Perhaps the only thing more alarming than Donald Trump are his fans, who can count among their dubious ranks apocalypse prognosticator Mark Taylor. Taylor recently appeared in Rick Wiles’ TruNews program to enlighten listeners on his frankly insane visions of a cosmology in which Trump is an avatar of God himself, and his enemies are the armies of Satan.

Right Wing Watch’s Brian Tashman writes:

Naturally, Wiles was overjoyed by his “amazing” prophesy.

Taylor also alleged that God made Fox News host Megyn Kelly “violently ill” for asking Trump “gotcha” questions at the first GOP presidential debate: “God was firing a warning shot: Don’t attack my anointed. Period.”

“The kingdom of darkness is attacking this man like never before,” Taylor said. “God is using this man — he’s not rattling the gates, because when you rattle the gates you don’t make entry — this man is literally splitting the kingdom of darkness right open.”

He claimed that protests at Trump rallies are a sign that “the kingdom of darkness is actually noticing the authority that God has put on this man and those are demons manifesting at this man’s rallies.”

“God is using him to literally split hell right open and stop this New World Order,” he added.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Bryan Fischer 

3. Bryan Fischer

If you are a conservative in favor of comprehensive tax reform, surely you can make a cogent argument without literally comparing income tax to the Dred Scott decision and literal slavery. Unless of course you are American Family Association (AFA) mouthpiece (and perennial, but richly deserving, TWIC piñata) Bryan Fischer.

In a post published this week on the AFA’s Stand blog, Fischer outlines his philosophy of how income tax is both “immoral and unconstitutional.”

(As a side note, it is awfully precious for Fischer to express any grievance over taxes since he operates — and spews his virulent, hateful garbage — from under the aegis of the AFA hate group, which enjoys non-profit status even as it militantly campaigns to erase people’s civil rights.)

He ends his screed thusly:

In essence, every wage earner is now in a state of involuntary servitude. We are obligated to pay an unjust and unconstitutional tax or face the full wrath and fury of the federal leviathan.

What the American people need is a second Emancipation Proclamation to free us from this bondage. Such an Emancipation Proclamation can be issued by Congress in the form of a law in line with the 16th Amendment that prohibits the federal government from collecting a tax on wages and salaries. Or an Emancipation Proclamation could be issued by the Supreme Court led by originalists who would issue a ruling that bound the federal government down by the chains of the Constitution and declared that it was not allowed to collect a tax on the wages and salaries of working Americans. Until that day comes, we will continue to be in the same condition as Dred Scott, slaves to an immoral, illegal, and utterly unconstitutional edict from the central government.

An Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863. There is no reason another cannot be issued in 2017. [emphasis added]

On a separate episode this week, Fischer claimed on the radio Wednesday that Reuters — yes, Reuters — had written an article disproving the Theory of Evolution and validating Fischer’s own brand of young earth creationism.

The only problem — as I pointed out to him on Twitter — was that his main source was not an article by the venerable news organization, but rather the heavily slanted Christian Times, which used a Reuters photo. Fischer, in effect, confused the photo caption for a byline, and so went on the air boasting that the secular media was writing articles confirming his unintelligent designs. “The Bible forbids evolution,” he said. “This book. This book does not lie.

He later tweeted that he was “Not perfect. Just forgiven.” By whom, he did not say.

Next: Brigham Young University

2. Brigham Young University

After a female student at the Mormon institution of higher learning Brigham Young University told police that she had been raped, her school busted her for violating the university’s bylaws.

BYU’s “honor code” — essentially a catalogue of puritanical, religion-inflected prescriptions — allows for the student to be punished for having had a member of the opposite sex in her home or for consuming alcohol.

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, the university is magnanimously allowing the student to complete her semester but has barred her from registering for future classes. The Tribune‘s Annie Knox writes:

[S]he filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education, saying BYU denied her services available to victims under Title IX, a federal law barring sex discrimination at schools that receive funds from the U.S. government.

If a school is found to have violated Title IX, it usually reaches a settlement with the Office for Civil Rights and must show it is making new efforts to comply with the federal law.

She “is one of several students at the school, owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who have said they were investigated by the school’s Honor Code Office after reporting a sexual assault.”

Next: Sean Hannity

1. Sean Hannity

The Fox News host is finally coming under fire from both within and without his network for treating Donald Trump with the breathless adulation of a fawning fanboy. (To cite just one example, Hannity teed up the exact same obsequious question, “Do you have a nickname for Hillary?” at both last week’s and previous week’s town hall.)

When the host lost his cool at Ted Cruz this week for playing politics with the delegates, he all but laid his bias for The Donald naked on the table. Hannity then went on a long Twitter tear, blasting his critics and asserting that any pro-Trump, anti-Cruz agenda was “BS.”

“Now let me go back to this other idea about the media,” he said on his radio show Wednesday. “The media has accused me of going soft in interviews on Republicans. I plead guilty. I absolutely plead guilty. You know why? Because I want one of them to win.”

Here he echoed remarks he had made last week, when he said: “If I’m interviewing Hillary Clinton, it’s gonna be a hundred times harder than any Republican, because I believe the Republicans represent, and have, a far better vision, one that I agree with.”

“I’m not a journalist,” he admitted. (No kidding.) “I’m a talk show host.”

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: A Tale Of Two Zealots

This Week In Crazy: A Tale Of Two Zealots

There is a civil war being waged between conservative crazies. Two shock jocks will enter the Thunderdome (i.e. RNC Convention) and only one will triumph. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Ann Coulter

May your takes be ever hot, Ann.

The Trump Cheerleader-in-Chief (and would-be Secretary of Homeland Security) has fired her latest volley against the golden boy’s chief competition, Ted Cruz. In a column entitled “Ted Cruz: Tracy Flick With A D*ck,” Coulter… well, she compares the Texas senator to Reese Witherspoon’s obsequious, overachieving, careerist high school student character from the 1999 satire Election. The only difference is Cruz has a… “duck”?

But Coulter’s real argument here has nothing to do with anatomy. It is instead a rabid, screeching tirade against “THE RULES” (a phrase she keeps capitalizing for some reason), ignorance of which cost the Trump campaign delegates in Colorado and may have profound implications in a heated, contested convention. She writes that if Cruz beats Trump, we won’t get “fun stuff like building a wall,” but will instead be treated to debate-nerd and logician arcana.

Returning the “duck” business, though…

Next: Ted Cruz 

4. Ted Cruz

Filed under news nobody wanted to hear, it came to light this week Sen. Ted Cruz once applied his legalistic brilliance and agile mental acumen to the nagging question of what the Founding Fathers thought about masturbation.

While solicitor general of Texas, Cruz and his team filed a legal brief in 2007 arguing that “There is no substantive-due-process right to stimulate one’s genitals for non-medical purposes unrelated to procreation or outside of an interpersonal relationships.” And further, there was no “right to promote dildos, vibrators, and other obscene devices.”

Did it happen this week? No. Is it crazy? I’ve heard worse.

Just seems as good a time as any to remember that this bizarro puritanical clown is currently being groomed as the GOP’s last best hope.

Hat tip Mother Jones

Next: Bryan Fischer 

3. Bryan Fischer

American Family Association’s desiccated scarecrow of a spokesman Bryan Fischer posted on his blog article some inane argument about how protesting anti-gay legislation makes you racist.

As always with Fischer, the post is dense with false equivalencies and ripe with unveiled bigotry. He takes aim at Bruce Springsteen, who cancelled a concert in North Carolina after that state’s governor signed into law legislation that sweeps away anti-discrimination laws, and Bryan Adams, who did likewise in Mississippi after the state passed one of those vile “religious liberty” bills. Or as Fischer glosses it: “a new civil rights bill that protects the conscience rights of blacks in a state that once was world-renowned for racial prejudice.”

Fischer’s addition of “race” into what has been widely reported as one of the most brazen anti-LGBT bills to work its way through a state legislature, is frankly bizarre. But here we get his formulation

“Bruce Springsteen is now officially a general in the war on women,” Fischer avers, “and Bryan Adams is now the leading bigot in the South.”

The nonsense here is almost inspired: because the anti-LGBT bill in Mississippi applies equally to blacks and whites, the law “protects the rights of blacks as well as whites.” To wit: “Black pastors won’t be forced to perform same sex wedding ceremonies against their conscience just because a white man in government says they have to. Black churches won’t be forced to rent their houses of worship for same sex wedding ceremonies. Black county clerks won’t be forced to issue same sex wedding licenses that violate their conscience just because a white boss says she has to. ”

It must be said loudly and often that race has nothing to do with this bill. What it does is allow for a brazen latitude of discrimination across the board on the dubious premise of “religion” — so, yes, the law is an equalizer insofar as conservative Christians, both black and white, will both be allowed to, for instance, deny services to gay couples, and LGBT citizens, both black and white, will have their civil liberties curtailed with equal force.

Fischer’s characterization of a discriminatory bill as a beacon for racial harmony shows him at his most specious, most desperate, and most deplorable.

Next: Crazy Con Showdown

1. and 2. Alex Jones & Glenn Beck

There’s really nobody to root for here.

Radio shock jock extraordinaire Alex Jones calls Glenn “I’m-too-crazy-for-Fox-News” Beck a “religious cult leader.” It’s about as sound an argument as Jones as ever made, and insofar as it describes Beck’s messianic self-regard and zealous proselytizing on behalf of his chosen candidate, it also describes Jones.

Each man is something of a totem for the daffiest, far-right fringe conspiracy-laden ideologies — but the current GOP slugfest has driven a massive rift driven between them.

On one side, you’ve got Beck and his The Blaze media outlet, pumping out reams of copy and hours of video in the service of selling America on Ted Cruz, in whose candidacy, Beck has insisted, he sees the will of God manifesting itself.

On the other side, Jones and his InfoWars mouthpiece, pushing the notion that Trump — in some vague coalition with Putin perhaps — is the only person alive who can save America from the Pontiff/United Nations/Big Pharma pederasty ring (or whatever gets cooked up underneath Jones’ tin-foil hat).

“He is an egomaniac, super-narcissist, probably psychotic, in my view, and he’s insane and wants to be a cult leader,” Jones said. Moreover, he accuses Beck of aping his act, by emulating Jones like some kind of conservative Oprah Winfrey. Oh, there’s more. Check out the video courtesy of Right Wing Watch above.

This rivalry goes back a long way, long before Cruz and Trump fell in and out of love with each other on the campaign trail. Mediaite notes that “in 2013, Jones called Beck ‘despicable’ and Beck labeled Jones a ‘madman,'” and the following year Jones called Beck a “Judas goat.”

So regardless of who wins the GOP nomination, it’s unlikely we’ll see these too clowns cool down their conflict any time soon. It’s too good for ratings, anyway.

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: Rush To Delusions

This Week In Crazy: Rush To Delusions

Hypocrisy, zealotry, and gobbledygook. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. David Daleidan

The mastermind behind the fraudulently shot and deceptively edited videos meant to smear Planned Parenthood into oblivion is now complaining about unfair treatment.

David Daleidan was head inquisitor (or, as Fox News characterizes him, citizen journalist) behind the Center for Medical Progress — the contemptibly misnamed anti-abortion outfit that released films which supposedly exposed the non-profit women’s health care network as a trafficker in human remains. Several state investigative probes and a congressional investigation later, and the only indictments handed down have been against Daleidan himself and his accomplice.

That indictment came in Texas, but it seems like California is potentially about to follow suit. The Washington Post reported:

Investigators with the California Department of Justice on Tuesday raided the home of David Daleiden, the anti-abortion activist behind a series of undercover videos targeting Planned Parenthood, the activist said.

Authorities seized a laptop and multiple hard drives from his Orange County apartment, Daleiden said in an email. The equipment contained all of the video Daleiden had filmed as part of his 30-month project, “including some very damning footage that has yet to be released to the public,” he said.

Daleidan and his conservative supporters have been quick to condemn the raid by officials as a politically motivated action. His own outside-the-law actions, of course, remain inscrutably righteous.

Next: Tennessee

4. Tennessee

The curious habit of state legislatures enshrining Official State Things is innocuous enough for the most part. Lately, though, Tennessee has been taking the practice to bizarre extremes.

Recently, the Volunteer State elected to make its official state firearm one of the most deadly weapons available for civilian use — so powerful it can down a commercial airliner, apparently. And then, as an encore, the legislature voted to make the Holy Bible the state’s official book.

As reported by The Tennessean

After nearly 30 minutes of debate, the state Senate on Monday approved the measure, sponsored by Sen. Steve Southerland, R-Morristown, with a 19-8 vote, sending the legislation to Gov. Bill Haslam’s desk.

While proponents stressed the historic significance of the holy book and its religious meaning, some opponents argued that the bill trivializes something they hold sacred while others stressed constitutional reservations.

Lowering the Bar helpfully notes that this is both plainly unconstitutional and stupid — and furthermore that Tennessee isn’t even the first state to try to do this. In Louisiana, LTB writes, “the debate was not over whether to do it but over which version of the Bible would be appropriate.”


Next: Andrea Tantaros

3. Andrea Tantaros

Fox’s Andrea Tantaros earns her seat on the Outnumbered couch by being progenitor of some fairly outlandish — and incorrigibly ditzy — Obama conspiracy theories

Tantaros is what happens when you cross Dale Gribble from King of the HIll with Helen Lovejoy from The Simpsons, by which I mean she manages to somehow hybridize the dopiest bromides of a self-righteous PTA meeting with the conspiracy theories of Alex Jones.

Here is the Fox News luminary in her own words, speaking about Barack Obama on Tuesday’s show:

Why would the administration give cover to ISIS? Is it about his legacy? Some people are asking the question, is he covering for ISIS? Why would the administration be pressuring these agents to not give us the facts on the ground?

Video below, courtesy of Media Matters.

For another example of super-sleuth Tantaros in action, check this out.

Next: Rush Limbaugh

2. Rush Limbaugh

You wouldn’t know it to look at him, but Rush Limbaugh, patron saint of shock jocks, is quite flexible.

That’s judging by his catalogue of contortions this week, which included the talk radio host defending Trump’s obscene remarks about “punishing” women, then defending his remarks defending Trump by saying that he was not, in fact, defending Trump, while still defending them… his remarks, that is. Like I said, he’s flexible. Being spineless can do that.

First, there was Limbaugh blasting MSNBC’s Chris Matthews for “setting up” Trump with a hypothetical question. He also tried to explain Trump’s answers away by blaming New York City liberals for inculcating poor Donald Trump’s brain with horrible caricatures of conservative ideologies, which he had little choice but to parrot on national television.

Then, there was Limbaugh asserting that Trump was technically correct in his assessment that, if you believe abortion is murder, then yes the woman should be punished. Trump’s only error was that he was “politically” in the wrong. (Side note: Take a moment to relish the editors at DailyRushbo’s decision to describe Limbaugh’s characterization of Trump’s comments as “politically wrong,” and not “politically incorrect,” because, you know, thesauri have a well known liberal bias.)

Then there’s the delicious not-about-face about-face the shockmeister performed over the next several days: pushing back against accusations that he was defending Trump, then recalibrating to explain that he had merely wanted to limit the damage Trump’s comments had done, whining:

It wasn’t pandering, it wasn’t an excuse.  It was an attempt to explain to people who want to support Trump why he might have screwed it up.  It was an attempt to explain to people who don’t want to support Trump why it might not be what you think it is.

Who are you going to believe — Rush, or your lying ears?

Next: Her again? 

1. Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin’s style is much more conducive to dittohead rallies than stately functions. No crowd seems to work as well for her as a throng of Tea Partiers cheering and sloshing around their drool buckets every time she says something like “No-Bama.” This was most cruelly illustrated this week by her insane, nonsensical — even by the extremely relaxed standards of the Alaskan governor — speech this week at a Wisconsin Republican function.

It was as if each word was plucked from her own worst game of Boggle. Palin’s latest bag of dictionary confetti impelled even the journalists in the room (who you’d think would be inured to her antics after all these years) to start caustically live-tweeting the event. The governor’s penchant for internal rhyme and folksy nonce words was in evidence, making the 20-minute monologue resemble nothing so much as a Wasilian riff on “Jabberwocky.”

If you don’t have the stomach or time to endure Palin’s 20-minute monologue resembled, you can view the best bits edited together in the following video (courtesy of Mediaite):

Sarah Palin Goes on Bizarre RambleSarah Palin went on a truly bizarre and rambling 20-minute speech in Milwaukee on Friday. Here are the highlights.

Posted by Mediaite on Monday, April 4, 2016

It demands a response, and this was the best one I could find:

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week in Crazy: Libruls R Dum

This Week in Crazy: Libruls R Dum

Radical libruls have taken over our classrooms, our judiciaries, and the media. But they can’t take over my column! Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged left wing. Starting with number five:

5. Gov. Nathan Deal

Georgia governor Nathan Deal vetoed the religious liberty bill that would have protected the God-given freedoms of Peach Staters from the encroachments of the radical LGBT agenda.

Deal makes the insulting gesture of bolstering his spaghetti-spined move by invoking Christians’ own principles against them, saying in his remarks that Christians “have a belief in forgiveness and that we do not have to discriminate unduly against anyone on the basis of our own religious beliefs.”

He continued: “We are not jeopardized, in my opinion, by those who believe differently from us. We are not, in my opinion, put in jeopardy by virtue of those who might hold different beliefs or who may not even agree with what our Supreme Court said the law of the land is on the issue of same-sex marriage. I do not feel threatened by the fact that people who might choose same-sex marriages pursue that route.”

Of course, earnest Christian faith had nothing to do with Deal’s decision. This is merely a craven capitulation from a RINO gov, who is apparently more interested in catering to Hollywood and corporate interests than respecting the men and women who actually work and live in his state. reported:

Executives from dozens of big-name companies, including Disney, Apple, Time Warner, Intel and Salesforce, called on the governor to veto the bill. The NFL warned it could risk Atlanta’s bid for the Super Bowl and the NCAA hinted it could influence the state’s ability to host championship games. And Deal’s office said two economic development prospects have already abandoned Georgia because of the legislation.

Thankfully, in this country, our rights do not come by “executives from big-name companies” or the NFL — they come from God. Lawmakers who recognize this simple fact have vowed to take up the crusade against the insidious gaystapo goons in the next session.

Next: Chris Matthews

4. Chris Matthews

The angriest man on MSNBC goaded Donald Trump into making some less-than-well-chosen remarks about abortion (saying that there should be “some punishment” for women who seek abortion — comments he quickly walked back). But of course the LSM went wild with it. Congratulations, Chris.

It wasn’t enough that he relentlessly pummeled Trump with speciously framed questions, provoking him into saying something unconsidered. Matthews also had the temerity to refer to the pro-life position as fascistic.

The revealing slip occurred after Trump adroitly turned the tables on Matthews, challenging him to square his religion with his vocal support for baby murdering.

“I think it’s a woman’s choice,” Matthews said.

“So you’re against the teachings of your church?” Trump fired back.

“I have a view, and a moral view,” said Matthews. “But I believe we live in a free country, and I don’t want to live in a country so fascistic that it can stop a person from making that decision.”

It has, of course, become common to see comparisons drawn between unpopular (conservative) views and the “f-word” — at least in Matthew’s echelon of champaign-popping, chai-sipping, Prius-driving liberal media twitheads. Still.

Next: “Gun shop owner” who refuses to sell guns 

3. Anti-Gun Guy Who Owns a Gun Shop

In the wise words of a t-shirt once sold by Marco Rubio’s campaign: “The 2nd Amendment is not a suggestion. It is a right.”

Although it looks like one gun shop owner didn’t get the memo, unilaterally deciding that it was his responsibility and privilege to trample another man’s constitutional right to bear arms.

Read the disgusting story in full here. The liberal media can try to spin it all they want (“Potential mass shooting averted”? Could there be a bigger nothing burger?) but the facts are plain: a man was deprived of his lawful right to bear arms because a GRAINO (Guns Rights Advocate In Name Only) didn’t like the look in a man’s eyes. Seriously.

“There was something about him. I don’t know. You really can’t explain it. He was going to do something. He was going to do something,” the Ohio gun shop owner told CBS News.

I’ll tell you want you “can’t really explain,” sir. Why you felt it was your right to get keep a gun out of the hands of a drug-dependent college dropout with a history of assault and mental illness. That’s not what the Founders wanted.

Hat tip LawNewz

Next: Cokie Roberts

2. Cokie Roberts

Mere weeks after she blamed Donald Trump for children starting fights in the playground, NPR’s Cokie Roberts is mocking the FBI for doing their job.

Responding to a Washington Post report that the agency had tasked 147 agents with uncovering Hillary Clinton’s email malfeasance, a chuckling Roberts said: “You know, what I took out of that story, a big story about the FBI and all of that, was that 147 FBI agents are focused on this? I mean, don’t they have other problems?” She added: “There’s no crime in the country they should be worrying about?”

Cokie might has well be wearing a t-shirts that says “Shill” written in Hillvetica.

Next: Who else? 

1. Hillary Clinton

What’s left to say about the soon-to-be-indicted (any day now!) Democratic frontrunner?

Other than that she’s a cheat, hypocrite, fraud, and phony, who lies to Americans, plays fast and loose with government secrets, and probably stiffs delivery boys on the tip?

If this week’s pratfall by Susan Sarandon is any indication, the former secretary, and likely avatar of the anti-Christ, will fail to net the support of ultra-libs, not to mention the pot-puffing Millennial set, all of whom are fleeing her campaign for Chairman Bernie.

And so the eternal burning garbage fire that is the Democratic Party continues to blaze. Keep at it, libtards!

Happy April Fools Day!

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

This Week In Crazy: Lies, Damn Lies, And Dogma

This Week In Crazy: Lies, Damn Lies, And Dogma

The War on Christians is heating up, Bernie Sanders is the new Hitler, and Michele Bachmann is still talking. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Paul Meyer

The Christian persecution narrative plays itself out in arenas of great consequence (such as the ongoing assault to which Christian groups subject Obamacare’s contraception mandate, which was again argued before the Supreme Court this week) and not (remember when Megyn Kelly got all huffy arguing that Santa was white?)

This belongs to the latter category.

Paul Meyer, who sits on the Millard Public School Board in Omaha, had a little hissy fit recently, in which he told atheists to “crawl back into their hellhole.” The dispute had something to do with the phrase “winter break.” Those damned atheists and their seasons.

As reported by, Meyer whined that he’s “a little bit tired of a minute minority in this country that keeps pushing Christmas out, keep pushing God out, keep pushing Christ out, when the majority is still a Judeo-Christian country.”

“I would like to make a motion that we rename this period Christmas break, and those atheists who don’t like it can crawl back into their hellhole, because I, for one, will not put my Lord, my God, aside for a few atheists,” Meyer said. “And if they don’t like it, the ACLU doesn’t like it, the heck with them.”

Raw Story helpfully notes that:

Last year Meyer made news when he defended embattled Nebraska State Board of Education member Pat McPherson for posting racist comments about President Barack Obama on his Objective Conservative blog.

When fellow state board members voted to ask McPherson to resign after public outcry, Meyer called upon those board members to step down for attempting to violate his right to free speech.

“The responsibility of this board is to set a good example for the kids of this state,” Meyer said. “But what you show these kids is that the First Amendment is null and void, and does not apply to anyone if the speech Nazis disagree.”

“Good example.” Right.

Hat tip Raw Story

Next: Joy Overbeck

4. Joy Overbeck

Self proclaimed “Radical conservative,” “Godfan,” and #tcot troll Joy Overbeck tweeted out her latest TownHall column with so much smarmy, shameless self-promotion I almost hesitate to include it here. But if her click-baity tease of a “religious test” was fulsome, her actual column does have value — insofar as it provides a glimpse into the mind of a rank-and-file American theocrat.

Overbeck rehearses and, with her unctuous social-media ploys, amplifies Franklin Graham’s recent exhortation that voters should only vote Christians into office. She writes:

[Graham] advised the crowd, “Vote for candidates who stand for Biblical truths and Biblical principles and who live them.” Horrors: a religious test! Of course people have all kinds of tests when choosing who to vote for but Heaven forbid there should be a test of Christian moral character. Instead, there’s the his-lips-are-two-thin test. And the eyes-too-close-together test. A longstanding favorite is the likeability test, also known as the who-would-be-fun-to-have-a-beer-with test. And if all else fails, the all-purpose there’s-just-something-I-don’t like-about-him test. Such silliness.

Actually, this is all sounding kind of sensible: People decide who they’re going to vote for based on any number of personal preferences, belief systems, or oddball quirks. I take Overbeck’s point: Voting for someone simply because they’re Christian does make about as much sense as voting for someone whose eyes are spread just so wide apart.

I guess my beef with Overbeck comes in when she makes the leap away from averring an individual’s right to vote for whomever they damn well please according to whatever cock-eyed metrics they’ve devised, and corrodes into something a little more insidious.

See, Overbeck gets to where I knew she would arrive, eventually: a full-throated endorsement of the Christian moral system (as she interprets it) in all its absolute, monolithic, unquestionable authority. It’s a system that individuals should abide by, yes, but moreover and more importantly, it’s one that Christians desperately need to impose on the entire society. (Of course, after shredding the “No Religious Test Clause from Article VI of the Constitution, she still has the audacity to draft the Founders into agreeing with her.)

“What would happen if Christians would stand up for our beliefs and insist on the free exercise of religion, our First Amendment right?” she writes. But her agenda is clear: “free exercise,” in this context, means getting conservative Christians elected into office with the express purpose of “exercising” their dogma in the form of policy. She blasts secularism as the great evil cancer at the heart of all society’s ills, and posits her brand of theology, firmly positioned in the seat of government, as the sole panacea:

The left has spent decades convincing our kids there is no such thing as right and wrong, that truth is relative and also irrelevant. God, if not dead, is seriously wounded or AWOL.  As God’s moral authority has been trampled under the advancing banner of “anything goes” we have descended into moral rot and cultural hopelessness.  “Without God, all things are permitted” as Russian novelist Dostoyevsky put it. And that way nihilism lies.

Children and teens coldly kill other children on our city streets and in our schools. Elementary school-aged kids are being taught their pre-adolescent affection for friends of the same sex means they’re gay. Never-married, grown-up men brag about the babies they’ve fathered with different women and abandoned. Young people text naked pictures of each other around the Internet and hook up for anonymous sex with someone they’ll never see again. Christians who disapprove of same-sex marriage are driven out of business by intolerant groups who will accept absolutely any behavior but principled dissent to their gay “rights” dogma.

So yes, her column begins with a bait-and-switch: “Gotcha.” Of course, she says, I’m not actually proposing a theocratic “religious test.” But it’s a double-bait-and-switch, as by the end, she enjoins her readers to put into practice Graham’s vision of an America, where the Christian Right has a vice grip on elected offices all over the land — because a Christian government is what America needs.

Next: Jim Bakker 

3. Jim Bakker

According to televangelist Jim Bakker, “political correctness” — that great conservative bugaboo — is going to be the literal death of Christians. Literally. Death.

With apparent earnestness, Bakker suggested this week that anyone caught praying was going to be summarily executed by a tyrannical (and probably secular) “They.” He said that if anyone was caught praying at a public school graduation, “They would threaten to arrest you, they would threaten to mow you down with a machine gun.”

He did clarify that “They” were unlikely to carry out these mass executions just now, “But eventually they will if we don’t stop it.”

If that doesn’t strike you as the calm, collected reasoning of a man at home in reality, maybe his assertion that Bernie Sanders is the second coming of Adolph Hitler will. As reported by Right Wing Watch, Bakker said:

“One of the most popular politicians right now is a socialist. And who is his biggest following? The young people of America, from the colleges. Maybe you understand a little bit what it felt like to live when Hitler was reigning and the church had to sit by and keep watching it and watching until millions, tens of millions — they had to build factories to kill people. All it takes is a couple bombs and all of America will be dead within a year, less than a year, just months.”


Hat tip Right Wing Watch (here and here)

Next: What is wrong with people?

2. People Filing Extremely Weird Fake Lawsuits on Behalf of Mass Murderers

Two weeks ago, we saw an intrepid troll pretend to be David Duke, filing a nonsensical lawsuit that managed to somehow make even David Duke look bad (well, worse) — at least for the 20 or so seconds that people bought it. Turns out he may have started a trend.

Recent days have seen not one but two high profile too-nuts-to-be-true lawsuits filed by high-profile screw jobs, which turned out to be hoaxes filed on their behalf by who we can only assume were screw jobs trying to remedy their slightly lower profiles.

First there was the Kalamazoo, Michigan Uber driver who went on a rampage, allegedly suing the tech giant for “ruining” his life and various other workplace grievances. That turned out to be a hoax. Slate wrote that, “Whoever submitted the fake handwritten complaint, however, did go to the moderate lengths of including Dalton’s inmate number, which was enough to fool federal court workers into accepting and assigning it a case number.” Meanwhile, according to the Detroit Free Press, “The phony lawsuit has baffled officials in the federal courthouse in downtown Detroit, where an internal investigation is under way to determine if any law was broken — and if so, what to do about it.”

Then, this week, there was the man who shot Gabby Giffords in the head improbably suing her for $25 million.

The story was simply too marvelous not to be breathlessly reported by a variety of media outlets. How could Jared Lee Loughner, who murdered six people including a 9-year-old girl in 2011, file a lawsuit in federal court alleging that the former congresswoman he failed to kill was responsible for inflicting emotional and psychological distress? Turns out he didn’t.

But what a gas. Fake Loughner claimed that his incarceration was illegal, and that “the govt. put a chip in my head to control my mind,” and in fact “MY HEAD is full of chips.” The would-be-mass-murderer-turned-plaintiff alleged that Gabby Giffords’s husband, NASA astronaut Mark Kelly, was spying on Americans, that Giffords herself was a member of the Illuminati/New World Order cartel/or something. There was something in the complaint about “chemtrails.” He was mad that he didn’t get to eat steaks and that there’s no NPR or C-SPAN in prison. The Boston Marathon bombers got a shout-out. As did Cliven Bundy and Ronald Reagan. And also —

Oh, you know what? You can just read it here.

Loughner files lawsuit against Giffords by Tucson News Now

Man, I’m glad the courts are at anyone’s disposal.

Next: Michele Bachmann 

1. Michele Bachmann

Four years later, and even by the standards of our current unhinged election cycle, Michele Bachmann remains one of the most bizarrely unhinged and acutely unqualified people to ever run for president.

The former congresswoman and hobbyist herald of the apocalypse blows our minds again and again with some of the most tin-eared and hypocritical proclamations — notable even among her clan of Bible-thumping Religious Right thugs for her slack-jawed illiteracy.

Bachmann published a column on WND Wednesday blasting President Obama for not altering the schedule of his state visit to Cuba (and later Argentina) in light of the the terrorist attack in Brussels. (By the way, don’t let the phony outrage fool you — when the president went to that baseball game, they were all jumping for joy, rabidly salivating over the several weeks worth of Obama-bashing they knew they could wring out of that ceremonial blunder.) Obama was guilty of engaging in some dubious optics, but it’s Bachmann who digs in her heels with the false equivalencies, unreflective worldview, and sanctimonious hell-raising.

She crudely reduces the attack by ISIS into an “act of conquest by Islam against the continent once enlightened by the beliefs and values of Western Christendom,” heedlessly advancing the narrative that this is a war between religions and suggesting crassly that the answer to fundamentalist dogma is more fundamentalist dogma.

She makes the coarse argument that (her) God caused the attacks in order to shine a light on Obama’s shortcomings, writing that “maybe our president’s humiliation comes in a manner so devastating it makes one wonder whether the Creator of humankind isn’t reminding this world of the inferiority of foolishness in the face of wisdom.” (Just try to diagram that sentence.)

She also blasts the “ideological merchants who traffic in the dangerous fantasy of multicultural diversity, globalization and one-world nonsense” for the role they played in creating the carnage.

All the indignation in the face of this horrific violence is curious given how often and how enthusiastically Bachmann has proclaimed that the End is Near. Certainly that is a welcome possibility, if the alternative means she’s going to keep writing her blog.

Hat tip Mediaite

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

This Week In Crazy: Infinite Mess

This Week In Crazy: Infinite Mess

Donald Trump is poised to win the GOP nomination, with theocratic loon Ted Cruz in second place. What could be worse than these two specimens? Their acolytes. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Glenn Beck

Glenn Beck has talked many many times about how he sees the divine hand of providence in Ted Cruz’s candidacy. He has suggested that Antonin Scalia’s death may even have been an intentional gambit by the Almighty to cast into focus how important it was for America to elect Cruz.

Talking on his show Monday night Beck invoked the Old Man Upstairs again — claiming that Himself had Seen Fit to assemble for His Humble Servant, Glenn Beck, the audience that will deliver America by voting for Ted Cruz. Hosts flatter their audiences all the time (“You’re the best crowd, really!”) but Beck’s obsequiousness — playing to his viewers’ faith by informing them that they are “the audience that saves the republic” — is on another level.

Tuning into his show, Beck said, is the Almighty’s method of grooming viewers to stamp their chad for Cruz via His “preparation and sanctification.” That is one hell of an endorsement for your show, Glenn.

It would be laughable if it weren’t so pathetic. Oh wait. It’s still laughable.

Hat tip and video courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Jeffrey Lord  

4. Jeffrey Lord

Well here’s a sensible chap.

In an American Spectator article published Tuesday, CNN contributor Jeffrey Lord lays it all out in his first paragraph: “Meet The new Ku Klux Klan. The newest leftist incarnation of that old leftist formula that combines racism with violence to push the progressive agenda.”

Although many conservative commentators were quick to demonize protesters for the violence at Trump rallies, only Lord has the audacity and historical illiteracy to draw a straight line from “the 19th and early 20th century Klan” to “the Violent Left” of today.

“This time around they don’t use hoods and burning crosses to rally the terrorists,” Lord wrote, “they use social media instead.” Yes, because’s social media organization, helping to coalesce a student-led protest against a modern American demagogue, is tantamount to the Klan’s reign of domestic terrorism. Well done, you straw-man-stuffing putz.

Lord’s fallacies and false equivalencies are nothing short of repulsive. He uses the idiot who charged Trump’s stage in Ohio to scapegoat anyone who wishes to protest Trump’s toxic rhetoric. He makes the gross and egregious freshman error of confusing Southern Democrats of the Restoration South with the modern Left because he either chooses not to, or can’t be bothered to, open a book. He says that “organized a mass shutdown” in the “tradition of the Klan,” neglecting of course to mention that the Klan pursued a decades-long strategy of murder and terror.

His disgusting and ignorant rant is viewable here.

Hat tip Media Matters

Next: Kentucky 

3. Kentucky State Senate

The Kentucky State Senate advanced legislation that would allow anyone who feels like it to reject the civil liberties of LGBT people (or anyone, really) under the banner of “religious liberty.”

Per Raw Story:

The measure, Senate Bill 180, passed on a 22-16 vote. State Sen. Albert Robinson (R), who sponsored the bill, called it a “common-sense, live-and-let-live” measure.

The bill, which is now headed to the state House for deliberation, effectively repeals anti-discrimination statutes covering LGBT residents in eight cities: Covington, Danville, Frankfort, Lexington, Louisville, Midway, Morehead and Vicco. It states that ” no statute, regulation, ordinance, order, judgment, or other law or action by any court, commission, or other public agency shall impair, impede, infringe upon, or otherwise restrict the exercise of protected rights by any protected activity provider.”

This is a thinly veiled gloss that gives free rein to anyone to carve out a zone of exemption in their immediate vicinity where civil rights do not apply, and they can discriminate with impunity. No law or ruling can come between a good Christian and his bigotry. How “live-and-let-live,” indeed. According to the Human Rights Campaign, 28 states this year have introduced anti-LGBT legislation under the flimsy premise of “religious liberty.”

Theocracy: An eminently convenient form of government if you happen worship the right god.

Hat tip Raw Story

Next: Katrina Pierson 

2. Katrina Pierson

Call her Trump 2.0.

When The Donald himself cannot be available to do a TV interview, the campaign rolls out the next best thing: spokesperson Katrina Pierson. She has clearly studied at the feet of the master and has a knack for emulating many of the hallmarks of Trump’s performances that have endeared him to his fans and exasperated journalists: Pierson is adept at conveying Trump’s incoherent flip-flops, his scattershot recriminations, his bulletproof resistance to logic, and adamantine self-righteousness spouting the most inane and hateful nonsense.

She also has caught Trump’s habit of bending reality — and the candidate’s record — to suit the conveniences of the immediate moment (or interview).

So it was Tuesday when Pierson was called to responds to anti-Trump ads spotlighting his history of ugly, misogynist remarks. Those comments, she said, were not made by the GOP frontrunner — they were “made as a television character.” It’s a brazen about-face, but perfectly in line with what has been Pierson’s tack on cable news shows for months now. She doesn’t miss a beat or break a sweat, as she transmutes the most utter bull excreta into pleasant-sounding bytes.

Doesn’t make her (or her candidate) any less answerable to the facts, or any less full of said excreta.

Hat tip Mediaite. Video courtesy of Fox News.

Next: Michael Savage 

1. Michael Savage

Paranoid savant Michael Savage gave his listeners a little taste of what a Hillary Clinton presidency will look like (and also what keeps Michael Savage up at night): There will be “armed rebellion” and “a transgender in your soup.”

“She is an absolute dictator,” he said on his show last week. “She will seize guns and make them illegal in any way necessary.” Though Right Wing Watch helpfully notes that Savage has been pulling this chicken-little act for years, telling his listeners that Obama is coming for their guns, and it has yet to happen.

By the by, Savage, along with fellow paranoiac fantasist shock jock Alex Jones, has hosted GOP frontrunner Donald Trump on his show — both men being precisely the sort of dunce whose aimless rage, powerlessness, and passing acquaintance with reality make them ripe for a charlatan like The Donald. No wonder a woman in power threatens them so much.

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.

This Week In Crazy: Will The Real Klansman Please Stand Up?

This Week In Crazy: Will The Real Klansman Please Stand Up?

There may be multiple Rafael Cruzes but there can be only one David Duke. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Not David Duke

We have a live one here.

A man impersonating the former KKK leader David Duke filed a typo-plagued motion against Donald Trump in federal court, attempting to keep Trump from “participating in the presidential race due to [Trump] being a danger to American morals, values, systems and principles.” But moreover, would-be Duke says, Trump must not be allowed to seek the highest office because Trump stole Not-Duke’s “intellectual property” — and that “intellectual property” just happens to be a suite of extremist views.

Faux Duke writes in his motion: “Donald Trump stole my intellectual property and then claims he never knew me, he disavows me. I am the Republican who lead the way in opposing affirmative action, massive immigration and welfare exploitation and Donald Trump stole my ideas while he disavows me. […] Donald Trump seems to feel he is entitled to steal people’s ideas for his campaign and not give them credit, which is wrong, and I find that offensive. ” He continues:

After years of hard work I spent writing the book My Awakening about race and immigration Trump think she can dupe Europeans (sic) Americans and throw me under the bus. Now he is taking the credit for proposals that I created to help make America great again. Donald Trump is a copyright infringer. He disavows me, but his fundamental ideas that I introduced into the Party as a House of Representatives Member …. Donald Trump takes ideas and then disavows the people he borrows them from.

The full motion is reproduced below, courtesy of LawNewz.

The Duke imposter has created a nested doll of inanity here: He pretends to be one of our nation’s most visible and vocal emissaries of hate; espouses the notion that somehow the very notion of white supremacy is a Duke original, wholly created and under copyright by the ex-Grand Wizard; and then seeks damages from Trump for stealing said ideas; only to blast him for then disavowing them. (Trump did, in fact, after much dithering, disavow Duke’s endorsement of his campaign.) But the Duke doppelganger does get one thing right: “Donald Trump,” he writes, “is a patent troll.”

The actual David Duke was not amused. “That’s the biggest, dirtiest trick I’ve seen recently,” he told the Tampa Bay Times. “They’ve really gone into the depths, the enemy. That would be the perfect smear: ‘Even David Duke doesn’t like Donald Trump.’ ”

Hat tip LawNewz

Next: Augustus Sol Invictus  

4. Augustus Sol Invictus 

Oh, Florida — thank you for continuing to play the role of America’s gag reel.

One of the people vying for would-be GOP nominee Marco Rubio’s soon-to-be empty Senate seat is Augustus Sol Invictus (not his given name, believe it or not), who managed to snag some column inches away from the hectic presidential primaries this week thanks to the fact that this wannabe U.S. Senator’s neo-Nazi associations kept him from entering Canada.

Indeed, in 2014 Invictus, an attorney, represented a neo-Nazi during his appeal for a domestic terrorism conviction, according to

Invictus, who is the “most dangerous Libertarian in America” according to his website, had previously appeared in the news after admitting that he killed a goat and drank its blood as part of a pagan ritual.

AP also reported:

He admits he’s been investigated by the FBI, the U.S. Marshals and other law enforcement. He is confident they’re still watching him, in part for a series of YouTube videos and other writings in which he discusses government. He renounced his citizenship in one paper, and in another he prophesied a great war, saying he would wander into the wilderness and return bearing revolution.

Sunshine State, you do keep things interesting.

Hat tip Raw Story

Next: Rafael Cruz 

3. Rafael Cruz 

The Texas senator running for president is — as we’ve noted before — merely a chip off the old crazy block.

Rafael Cruz — who believes that public education is a decades-old secular communist plot to brainwash children, that Barack Obama should go “back to Kenya,” and that same-sex marriage is linked to godless socialism — remarkably gets wheeled into right-wing radio and television programs on a regular basis to dispense his wisdom.

Speaking to Breitbart News Daily Wednesday, the elder Cruz warned of the armageddonite dangers that await America should another “liberal justice” be appointed to the nation’s highest court. If a Democrat ever appoints another judge to SCOTUS, Cruz warned, “we will lose our right to keep and bear arms. We will lose all of our religious freedom. We will see abortion-on-demand to the day of delivery. We will see the destruction of traditional marriage, and the family is the foundation of society — if the family is destroyed, society will be destroyed.”

This is the kind of fringe lunacy that you would never expect to find on the campaign trail — or not. As we shall see…

Hat tip and audio courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Ted Cruz 

2. Ted Cruz

Nobody quite sells the Christian persecution narrative with the unctuous, victim-baiting sleaze of Senator Ted Cruz.

To hear Cruz tell it, Christian Americans are living in an Orwellian hellscape — fearfully practicing their persecuted faith in icy, unlit corners of the Republic, where the All-Seeing Eye of Big Secular Brother cannot penetrate. “Religious liberty” legislation in this schema is the last bastion protecting Christians from an oppressive government — and not, you know, a license to ignore someone else’s civil liberties.

As Right Wing Watch has reported, Cruz has used his pulpit to pitch his preposterous fantasia about Christian victimhood many, many times — including suggesting, absurdly, that a Democratic Executive Branch could sic the FCC on Christian broadcasters and pull them off the air or that churches will lose their tax exemption because of this gay “jihad.”

Cruz predictably used his speech at CPAC to play up these familiar themes. “We are one liberal justice away from the Supreme Court ruling that government can take our religious liberty away and force every one of us to violate our faith on penalty of prison or fine,” he said. “We are one liberal justice away from the Supreme Court ordering Ten Commandments monuments torn down all over this country.”

One day Adam and Steve are tying the knot; the next thing you know, we’re sandblasting stone tablets.

You can view video of Cruz’s CPAC speech below:

Update: America’s Finest News Source tells us Cruz’s nightmare scenario may already be happening!

Hat tip Right Wing Watch. Video courtesy American Conservative Union.

Next: Alex Jones 

1. Alex Jones

Alex Jones, noted paranoiac, unleashed his latest torrent of high-pitched idiocy about the perils of vaccines on his InfoWars program this week.

Jones shamelessly uses as a peg for his diatribe the tragic death of the infant who attained Internet fame as “Bernie baby,” and passed away last week of SIDS at the age of four months.

In addition to his many, many other core beliefs — which include the notion that the armed forces invaded Texas last summer, the Sandy Hook massacre was a “false flag” operation, and that America’s savior Donald Trump is under siege from demonic foes — Jones is an anti-vaxxer. In fact, the dangers vaccines play a crucial role in Jones’ Grand Unified Conspiracy Theory (which I wrote about last year), involving the Pope, the U.N., and an international cabal of pedophiles using vaccines to sap children’s minds.

Jones’ latest rant — a “special report,” entitled “Would You Jump Off A Building With Your Baby?” — begins with him asking his audience to imagine pleading with a man or woman standing on a ledge, contemplating suicide, while holding a baby. “What would run through your mind?” Jones asks. “What would go through your heart — and your gut? You’d tell them to value their life, along with the life of their child.”

Jones proceeds to liken mentally disturbed people who murder their children to parents who inoculate. Vaccines, he says, are “the most important medical issue facing humanity today” and using them, he says, is tantamount to “certain death.”

You can watch the full “report” below.

Side note: Jones has come out in full-throated support of Trump, who has appeared on his show multiple times.

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

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This Week In Crazy: Everyone Get On the Trump Train

This Week In Crazy: Everyone Get On the Trump Train

This week saw Trump’s very super Tuesday, the whole-hearted embrace of the GOP frontrunner by the white supremacist community, and perhaps the most unhinged, vulgar Twitter feed in Texas getting elected to the Republican party establishment. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the loony, bigoted, and hateful behavior of the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

4. Trump’s Pummeling Fox News Into Submission

We’re in the “bargaining” phase now. While some establishment Republicans are belatedly scrambling to sabotage Trump’s path to the nomination, Fox News honchos have heard the fat lady and are hopping on the Trump train.

Tweeting the morning after Trump took seven states on Super Tuesday, Rupert Murdoch, who chairs Fox News’ parent company, wrote: “If he becomes inevitable party would be mad not to unify.”

Similarly, the network’s executive chairman Roger Ailes has pulled the plug on his previous support of Marco Rubio, disenchanted by the Florida senator’s flagging performance in the polls, at debates, and in the delegate count. According to New YorkAiles told a Fox host: “We’re finished with Rubio. We can’t do the Rubio thing anymore.” The report continues:

Already, there are on-air signs that Fox’s attitude toward Rubio has cooled. This morning, anchor Martha MacCallum grilled Rubio about his poor Super Tuesday performance. “Is that a viable excuse at this point?” she asked, when he tried spinning his second-place finish in Virginia.

[…] Ailes is now back to searching for a candidate the channel can rally behind. “He’s thinking, What do we do about the whole damn thing?” one of the news executive’s friends said.

What indeed? It’s almost as though stoking paranoid, xenophobic, hateful, extremist sentiment has… consequences?

Next: Robert Morrow  

3. Robert Morrow

Happy Texas Independence Day, everyone! The jubilee occurred on Wednesday, the 180th anniversary of the state declaring its independence from Mexico.

One of the newest additions to Texas Republican party establishment rang in the holiday by going on a social media spree, calling Rick Perry a “rampaging bisexual adulterer,” mocking Bill Clinton’s genitals, challenging Chelsea Clinton’s parentage, labeling Hillary Clinton an “angry bull dyke,” praising George W. Bush’s fellatio technique, calling his father George H. W. Bush “a homosexual pedophile being provided boys by [a] pedophile ring,” and chastising Marco Rubio for attending lots of “gay foam parties.”

Meet Robert Morrow, the newly elected chair of the Republican Party of Travis County, Texas! He is already winning the disgust and animosity of his fellow GOPers for his volatile, extreme, and crude social media ramblings. (As of this writing, he’s still going.)

According to Morrow’s vice-chair, who is exploring options to have Morrow removed, “His social media account is something that no child should see. He is a total disaster.” But according to Morrow, his vice-chair and his cronies “can go fuck themselves.”

Also, Morrow’s apolitical tweets tend to focus on his preoccupation with — and feature pictures of — large breasts. But you see, this is all perfectly acceptable for a member of the contemporary political scene. “I’m like Donald Trump,” Morrow explained to the Tribune. “I like women.”

Ahh, that explains it. It also explains why Trump operative Roger Stone (who co-authored some book with Morrow) takes credit for Morrow’s ascendance:

Next: Ben Carson 

2. Ben Carson

Here we are in the final sputtering days before the inevitable and long overdue suspension of his DOA campaign. And Ben Carson is milking these final moments when people care what he says for all they’re worth.

Speaking at the National Religious Broadcasters Forum last week, Carson repeated his usual theocratic malarkey about how the United States is a fundamentally Christian nation and that religious liberty really only exists for the benefit of Christians. Same-sex marriage, naturally, is to be condemned in such a schema, and Christians should be permitted to flout civil rights laws under the dubious guise of “religious liberty.”

As reported by Right Wing Watch:

Carson told host Eric Metaxas that “the First Amendment gives you the right to live according to your faith without being harassed,” adding that “separation of church and state is not in the United States Constitution, it was a Supreme Court ruling a few decades ago where it actually entered the lexicon.” In fact, the phrase was used by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.

Carson’s exegesis of the First Amendment is the kind of patent nonsense we’ve come to know and abhor from the retired neurosurgeon whose mastery of cognitive functions apparently is limited only to brains not his own. As he has done before on diverse subjects — from the purpose of pyramids to the role of the Supreme Court — the good doctor can never pass up an opportunity to make gross display of his ignorance.

If he does choose to sit out the rest of the presidential race, perhaps he can at least carve out a role for himself as an author of historical fiction.

Hat tip and video courtesy of Right Wing Watch

Next: Trump and the White Supremacists

2. Trump’s Love Affair with White Supremacists and 1. Vice Versa 

Donald Trump is a “unifier.” Just ask him.

Right now, he’s unifying all manner of white supremacist groups to his side. It’s not just David Duke, who credits his endorsement with Trump’s surging poll numbers. In the midst of all the renewed attention Trump received from the ex-KKK grand wizard’s thumbs-up, Washington Post last week updated and re-published an article from December explaining how the Trump movement has stoked new life into America’s white supremacist movement.

And then of course, there’s the fact that Trump’s camp recently granted press credentials to James Edwards, a man who hosts a white nationalist radio show called The Political Cesspool, which lists among its principles support for the Confederacy and the rejection of abortion, feminism, homosexuality, non-Christians, and immigrants.

Edwards also sits on the board of directors for the Council of Conservative Citizens (formerly known as the White Citizens Council) where he spends about four hours a week, according to the group’s most recent tax filing. It is to this esteemed member of the media that Donald Trump Jr. granted a 20-minute interview. The Southern Poverty Law Center has called Edwards’s show “a leading forum for neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers, and white supremacists,” which shows off his penchant for “smoothly injecting white nationalist ideology into national mainstream media discussions of race relations and crime in America”.

That Trump attracts white nationalists and white supremacists to his rallies — and that violence breaks out at those same events — is nothing new. Recently, white nationalists were reported to have pummeled a black woman at a rally, and also to have chanted: “You’re scum, your time will come, you’re scum, your time will come.” White nationalist activist Matthew Heimbach confirmed that he was the one pushing the woman seen in the video, because “White Americans are getting fed up and they’re learning that they must either push back or be pushed down,” he said.

He also told the Washington Post: “This is the first time since Buchanan in the ’90s and George Wallace in ’68 where you have a guy outside the mainstream speaking to white interests.” He added that Trump “has opened this floodgate that I don’t think can be restrained regardless of what happens in the 2016 elections.”


Then again, it truly does take a unifier to somehow win the endorsement of both Louis Farrakhan and David Duke.

Hat tip Raw Story and Media Matters

Image: DonkeyHotey via Flickr

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!Get This Week In Crazy delivered to your inbox every Friday, by signing up for our daily email newsletter.