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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the wildest attacks, conspiracy theories, and other loony behavior from the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Bryan Fischer

And Jesus said to His disciples, “Truly I say to you, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.” “Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” —Matthew 19

As a self-styled leader of the religious right, American Family Association mouthpiece Bryan Fischer is certainly familiar with that passage from the Bible. But during the Tuesday’s tax-day edition of his radio show, Fischer proposed an addendum: What if the rich man enters with a ticker-tape parade?

“The top 1 percent are funding 30 percent of the government!” Fischer raged. “So, rather than the poor, the low income and the middle class being resentful of these people, they should be kissing the ground on which they walk!”

“Who’s paying for the EBT cards? Who’s paying for food stamps? Who’s paying for the women and infant children program? Who’s paying for subsidized housing? Who’s paying for Medicaid? It is the top 1 percent,” he added. “So, they ought to be given ticker-tape parades once a week in all of our major cities to thank them for funding welfare for everybody.”

If Ken Langone ever abandons Chris Christie, maybe he should try to draft Fischer into the 2016 presidential race. After all, they share an obsession with the 1 percent — and the Nazis.

4. Phyllis Schlafly

Phyllis Schlafly

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

After their high-profile struggle to reconcile Equal Pay Day with opposing the Paycheck Fairness Act, Republicans began redoubling their efforts to sell women on the GOP.

And as usual when Republicans are trying to attract new voters, Phyllis Schlafly is here to screw things up.

In a Tuesday op-ed for the Christian Post, Schlafly took it upon herself to lay out the anti-feminist case for the gender pay gap. In short: Women should be happy to make less money, because it will help them find a husband.

While women prefer to HAVE a higher-earning partner, men generally prefer to BE the higher-earning partner in a relationship. This simple but profound difference between the sexes has powerful consequences for the so-called pay gap.

Suppose the pay gap between men and women were magically eliminated. If that happened, simple arithmetic suggests that half of women would be unable to find what they regard as a suitable mate.

Obviously, I’m not saying women won’t date or marry a lower-earning men, only that they probably prefer not to. If a higher-earning man is not available, many women are more likely not to marry at all.

Schlafly later added that “The best way to improve economic prospects for women is to improve job prospects for the men in their lives, even if that means increasing the so-called pay gap.”

Meanwhile, somewhere in Washington D.C., Reince Priebus is presumably sobbing into a copy of his “Growth and Opportunity Project.

3. “Blood Moon” Watchers

Blood Moon

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

To say that Tuesday’s lunar eclipse upset some members of the far right would be a dramatic understatement.

Many people refer to the eclipse as a “blood moon,” because sunlight filtering through the Earth’s atmosphere gives the moon a red hue during the event. Pastor John Hagee’s reasoning is a bit different, however; he thinks that the blood moon represents the beginning of the End Times.

“I believe that the heavens are God’s billboard, that he has been sending signals to planet Earth, and we just haven’t been picking them up.” Hagee says. “God is literally screaming at the world, ‘I’m coming soon.'”

Hagee has dabbled in apocalyptic rhetoric before; he once claimed that God sent Hurricane Katrina to New Orleans because the city was planning a sinful “homosexual rally.”As for the latest sign of a vengeful God, you can conveniently learn more about the coming apocalypse by buying Hagee’s book!

While Pastor Hagee believes that the blood moon signals the end of days, Pastor Mark Blitz has an even crazier theory: The eclipse is just God giving the finger to Barack Obama.

Writing in WorldNetDaily (of course), Blitz explains:

Barack Obama quite recently, expressing his frustration that Republican members of Congress won’t give him what he wants, threatened arbitrary executive action, promising that he has a “pen and phone.”

But there are “flashing red warning lights” in the heavens that should command peoples’ attention right now, because the one behind those warnings, God, had “more than a pen and a phone in his hand,” according to the author of “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs.”

“I believe the moons are like flashing red warning lights at a heavenly intersection saying to Israel as well as the nations they will be crossing heavenly red lines and if they do, they will understand as Pharaoh did on Passover night 3,500 years ago that the Creator backs up what He says.

“Like Pharaoh the leaders and pundits of today will realize when it comes to crossing the red lines of the Creator of the universe he has more than a pen and a phone in his hand.”

Look on the bright side: At least the religious right is (kind of) talking about science!

2. Ted Yoho

Yoho-- FoodStamps

 

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) earned plenty of attention this week for telling a black voter that the Civil Rights Act may be unconstitutional, but that may not have even been his craziest statement of the day.

After the controversial town hall meeting on Monday, ThinkProgress’ Scott Keyes interviewed Yoho about climate change:

KEYES: Droughts and extreme weather have been on the rise here in Florida. Do you think that’s something that’s attributable to manmade climate change?
YOHO: No. I think it’s a natural occurrence. I think we need to be good stewards of the resources we have and we need to get better, which we have, through technology and innovation.
KEYES: Do you think scientists are right on climate change or are they off-base on it?
YOHO: I think there’s an agenda-driven science. I can read stuff that says that the information was skewed. It’s not right. I’m a guy that’s worked out in the weather since I was 16. I can tell there’s climate change. The cause? I’m not smart enough for that.

So Floridians can go ahead and forget about the extreme dangers that climate change poses to their state. Ted Yoho may not be smart enough to know why he’s been getting sweatier while he works out in the weather, but he’s certain that he knows more than 97 percent of climate scientists.

And after all, unskewing numbers never goes wrong for Republicans.

1. Shoe Truthers

High Heel

When a woman threw her shoe at former secretary of state Hillary Clinton during a speech last week, regular This Week In Crazy readers knew what would happen next: The Shoe Truthers are here.

First, there was Arthur Louis. Writing on the website of Fox News contributor Bernard Goldberg, Louis began by parroting Brian Kilmeade’s assertion that George W. Bush is a much better shoe-dodger than Clinton, who “ducks flying shoes like a girl.” He then gets to the meat of his point:

“There is a political axiom, I believe first posed by Euclid or Archimedes, that when Hillary does something, or when something happens to her, she has carefully calculated it beforehand,” he writes. “So it would not be stretching logic to suppose that Hillary arranged to have the shoe thrown at her. Remembering the Bush incident, she may have calculated that this would make her seem presidential.”

The stupidity didn’t stop there. Disgraced former presidential candidate and pizza magnate Herman Cain weighed in via Twitter:


And when there’s a stupid conspiracy theory about the Clintons, Rush Limbaugh is always on the case.

“I just do not attach much genuineness to them at all and I don’t know why anybody would be throwing a shoe at Hillary,” Limbaugh said. “Unless, maybe it’s an attempt to make the Benghazi people look like nuts and lunatics and wackos.”

That’s right: Hillary Clinton arranged to have a shoe thrown at her head to distract America from #Benghazi.

We have a long way to go until 2016.

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!

Photo by Mediamodifier from Pixabay

Reprinted with permission from TomDispatch

When it rains, pieces of glass, pottery, and metal rise through the mud in the hills surrounding my Maryland home. The other day, I walked outside barefoot to fetch one of my kid's shoes and a pottery shard stabbed me in the heel. Nursing a minor infection, I wondered how long that fragment dated back.

A neighbor of mine found what he said looked like a cartridge case from an old percussion-cap rifle in his pumpkin patch. He told us that the battle of Monocacy had been fought on these grounds in July 1864, with 1,300 Union and 900 Confederate troops killed or wounded here. The stuff that surfaces in my fields when it storms may or may not be battle artifacts, but it does remind me that the past lingers and that modern America was formed in a civil war.

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