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. Dinesh D’Souza
Of course, this all overlooks King’s clear disagreement with just about everything that the modern GOP stands for (not to mention the fact that nine Republicans in Congress voted against making Martin Luther King’s birthday a national holiday in the first place). Still, it’s become something of a yearly tradition on the right.
This year, however, pseudo intellectual Dinesh D’Souza flipped the script: Instead of comparing King to a Tea Partier, he compared himself to King.
I hesitate to point this out, but I find it interesting that Martin Luther King Jr. was a LAWBREAKER who spent time in JAIL
— Dinesh D’Souza (@DineshDSouza) January 17, 2015
WE LAWBREAKERS GOTTA STICK TOGETHER: I’m excited to celebrate the life and legacy of my fellow lawbreaker & jailbird Martin Luther King Jr.
— Dinesh D’Souza (@DineshDSouza) January 18, 2015
AN INTERESTING PARALLEL: MLK was targeted by J. Edgar Hoover, an unsavory character; I was targeted by the equally unsavory B. Hussein Obama
— Dinesh D’Souza (@DineshDSouza) January 19, 2015
D’Souza neglected to mention that King was imprisoned for fighting for civil rights, while D’Souza pled guilty to a hilariously inept campaign finance scheme.
4. Louie Gohmert
During his State of the Union address, President Obama took a moment to discuss the tension between black communities and police forces across the country.
“We may have different takes on the events of Ferguson and New York,” the president said. “But surely we can understand a father who fears his son can’t walk home without being harassed. Surely we can understand the wife who won’t rest until the police officer she married walks through the front door at the end of his shift.”
It may not shock you to learn that Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) was not pleased.
“He’s been so divisive on the issue of race,” said the congressman who worries that borrowing money from China will leave us forced to eat “moo goo dog pan.” Thankfully, Gohmert knows a different African-American whom Obama could emulate.
“But unlike my favorite coach in high school, who happened to be black, he has been more divisive — when I had a coach that brought us together as a team like never before,” Gohmert said. “I thought this president would do that. He has divided more than united, so that’s been heartbreaking.”
Yes, America would be better off if the first black president were just a bit more like Gohmert’s basketball coach (who “happened to be black”). But GOP outreach is still going great, thanks for asking.
3. Glenn Beck
American prophet Glenn Beck may be a devout member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, but that doesn’t mean that he wants a fellow Mormon to be president.
On Thursday, Beck found out that Mitt Romney and Jeb Bush are planning to meet in Salt Lake City, Utah, possibly to discuss the 2016 presidential election. He is concerned; evidently, the idea of a Mormon president is suddenly cause for alarm.
“Remember, it was the Mormons, the two Mormons Smoot-Hawley, they were two Mormons that brought us the Smoot-Hawley Act which brought us the Great Depression,” Beck warned. “Sometimes their theology can go and mix with politics and go wildly wrong.”
“When Mormons go bad, they go really bad. They go socialist,” he added. “They mix the Gospel with government.”
In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack, Fox News contributor Steve Emerson made a startling claim: Birmingham, England — like many other places in Europe — is a “totally Muslim city where non-Muslims don’t go in.”
As it turns out, this is flagrantly untrue. In fact, it’s so false that Fox News, which is not always known for its willingness to admit fault, apologized for the error on four separate occasions.
Unfortunately, this message didn’t filter down to Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal.
Over the past week, Jindal has repeatedly shared Emerson’s discredited claim.
“In the West, non-assimilationist Muslims establish enclaves and carry out as much of Sharia law as they can without regard for the laws of the democratic countries which provided them a new home,” he warned in a speech in London. Later, on CNN, Jindal said that he heard “from folks here” that “there are neighborhoods where women don’t feel comfortable going in without veils” and “where police are less likely to go.”
Who were the folks from Birmingham who told Bobby Jindal that he is right, and everyone from Fox to UK prime minister David Cameron is wrong? You guessed it: discredited neoconservative diplomat John Bolton!
“Ambassador John Bolton’s Gatestone Institute Chronicled Dozens Of Reports Of ‘No-Go’ Zones In Europe,” reads a document on Jindal’s web page.
And if John Bolton said it, it must be true.
Why is Jindal sticking with such an obviously false narrative? Perhaps he’s trying to stand out in a crowded GOP presidential field. If so, we can count his retreat on stopping the GOP from being the “stupid party” as the first flip-flop of his campaign.
1. Sandy Rios
This week’s “winner,” right-wing radio host Sandy Rios, has long believed that President Obama is secretly a Marxist Muslim. But after Tuesday’s State of the Union address, she finally has proof.
On the Wednesday edition of her program, Rios spoke with a caller who (incorrectly) accused President Obama of misidentifying the location of the United States Air Force Academy. The revelation led Rios to share another telling turn of phrase that she noticed during the speech.
“The other thing he said that I caught — he has done this before — you know there are five pillars of Islam, and he used the term ‘pillars’ again in his speech last night,” Rios said.
“It is just really interesting,” she added. “Language can actually give us some insight, choices of words.”
Right Wing Watch has the audio:
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