Wednesday, August 21, 2019

HOLDING THE MAD KING'S BEDPAN.

Wayne Allyn Root write ups are going to be one of those periodic moments where we get to see which reporters will cite RWW for research we did and which ones will pretend they unearthed it all on their own -- Jared Holt
I hear you, bro. Right Wing Watch is always on top of these nutsos and their voluminous coverage of the former Libertarian Party Vice Presidential candidate -- whose most recent self-embarrassment,  his gross "King of Israel" tribute to Trump, which Trump, susceptible as he is to suck-ups, has promoted -- is no exception.

I myself have noted Root's shenanigans over the years -- not in the painstaking way RWW has, but merely as an observer on many occasions when Root was being the rowdiest guest at some crackpot do. There was that time when Chief Justice John Roberts failed to overturn Obamacare and Root suggested he had been blackmailed into it; his insistence, in the middle of Obama's first term, that all his "small business friends" were going to stop hiring entirely ("in this new Obama world of high business taxes... the key to success is to avoid employees") or leave the country and then boy would America be sorry; predicting "Christians Will Empower A Romney Landslide" in 2012 and, when that didn't work, trying to get Obama jailed ("Forget impeachment, it’s time for criminal prosecution"), etc. Haven't noticed him much in the Trump era, though he seems to have maintained the same level of intensity right up to the present (here's one from June where he says libtard American cities are all like Venezuela, and get a load of this).

But Root's not the only conservative who has come to Trump's defense after his incredible statement about the "disloyalty" of Jews who didn't support him and his follow-up gibbers. "MSNBC Panel Tries to Memory Hole Dem Anti-Semitism in Denouncing Trump’s Comments," Newsbusters cries. The tricksy Dems are using the President's plainly anti-Semitic remarks to distract America from the usual Republican smears of dark-skinned Democrats!

Then there are those who straight-up agree with Trump: "'I AM A PROUD JEWISH PERSON', SAYS BERNIE SANDERS WHO PALS AROUND WITH ANTI-SEMITES," rants FrontPage magazine's Daniel Greenfield, waving his Bad Jew detector. Inevitably there are the Insult Jews To Own The Libs takes like "The Morning Briefing: Trump Triggers the Israel Haters" from Stephen Kruiser at PJ Media:
The Democrats have a number of voting blocs they rely on and no one is ever supposed to question why any of them keep voting the way they do. I am a practicing Roman Catholic and I don't understand how millions of other Catholics can vote for politicians who belong to a party that is now positively gleeful about abortion.
I don't know what would make that Catholic thing worse worse for Kruiser -- if he hasn't spent the ten seconds it would take a normal person to figure it out, or if he has.

The modern conservative movement isn't even irritable mental gestures anymore, as Trilling had it; it's more like irritable bowel syndrome.

Friday, August 16, 2019

FRIDAY 'ROUND-THE-HORN.


Just because it's nice and musicianly
doesn't mean I can't like it.

• I have released into the wild a new issue of Roy Edroso Break It Down so non-subscribers can see it. It is about some great new candidates the Republican Party is offering for Congress in 2020. It is inspried by all the new Republican candidates who are totally nuts, like this guy, and these guys, and this lady and oh why go on, just read my thing it's fun.

• I was seriously wondering why Noah Rothman, mainly known to me as a typical commentary asshole, was trending on Twitter like he was Cardi B or something, and found to my amusement that he is a frequent guest on Morning Joe and that everyone hates him. Further reading suggests his latest offense was complaining about Democrats invoking Michael Brown and Ferguson because it is now part of wingnut catechism that Brown deserved to be killed by that cop and that the Real Outrage is Democrats "lying" that it wasn't a good clean kill. There are plenty of examples, but see David French's "On Ferguson, Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris Told a Terrible Lie" for a particularly repulsive specimen, featuring this humdinger: "The publication of a false accusation of a crime like murder is libelous under American law. In other words, their lies may well have been illegal." That's pretty rich coming from a theocon crackpot like French, who is also the author of "Is It Uncivil to Argue That Abortion Kills a Baby?" (Calling a quarter of all American women murderers is cool, apparently, but calling the killing of an unarmed black kid murder is criminal libel.)

When I was younger I used to worry whether I was being fair even to conservatives, and might have entertained their bad-faith, angels-on-the-head-of-a-pin discussions about shit like this,  but frankly? Them days is gone.



Tuesday, August 13, 2019

THE NEW COLOSSI.

"Give me your tired and your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge." -- Ken Cuccinelli rewrite of the Statue of Liberty poem.

"We the People of the United States, in Order to bust unions, have appointed me, Jeffrey Epstein's buddy, to run the Department of Labor" -- Preamble of the Constitution as rewritten by Alex Acosta.

"I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me a cabinet post I'm totally unsuited for, or give my son opportunities to grift -- preferably both!"-- Patrick Henry as rewritten by Ben Carson.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal except spics and bitches, when's lunch?" -- Declaration of Independence as rewritten by Donald Trump.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

WHEN ALL YOU HAVE IS A MAGA, EVERYTHING LOOKS LIKE A CLINTON.

Famed pedophile, celebrity panderer and Trump buddy Jeffrey Epstein manages to commit suicide despite being under suicide watch in a federal facility run by Trump's Attorney General Bob Barr, son of the man who hired (maybe, see Update) the massively unqualified Epstein to teach at the Dalton School.

The big hashtag on Twitter right now is #ClintonBodyCount, and the notion that Hillary killed Epstein is being pushed by at least one Trump official (that is, under her own name, rather than via bots).

I've written about conservatives' weird idée fixe that Hillary Clinton is a mass murderer* but really there's hardly a point to reexamining it anymore; it's wingnut catechism, and as even more bizarre ideas like Pizzagate enter that catechism the original idée gets more fixe; in fact, since whole new generations of wingnut have come up since the madness began in the 90s, its adherents probably have no clear idea of its origins -- why, they probably don't even know who Wayne DuMond is! And they certainly don't know that the crackpot attribution of Vince Foster's suicide to Clinton was promoted by the Wall Street Journal as a propaganda strategy rather than as investigative reporting.

Outside crazytown, there's still some hope justice may be done; but for a certain dank, small slice of the electorate it's too late to avenge the con job to which they've succumbed -- we just have to write them off, leave them to disappear up the asshole of Q-ism, and rebuild.

* I refer to the vengeance and witness-tampering murders for which she is held liable by nuts, and of course the Benghazi bullshit, not her bombing decisions as Secretary of State, of which she is of course guilty as hell.

UPDATE. To be fair -- yeah, I know, but I'm soft-hearted that way -- Barr Sr. announced his resignation in February '74 and Epstein started teaching that summer, so the Times says it's "unclear" whether Barr okayed the hire or not. Barr did stay on at Dalton for the rest of the year, so it could have gone either way.

Friday, August 09, 2019

THEY MAY NOT KNOW MUCH ABOUT ART, BUT KNOW WHAT THEY LIE.

As I mentioned to readers of my newsletter (Subscribe! Cheap!) this morning, Rod Dreher is raging that a screenplay for The Hunt, apparently an upcoming The Most Dangerous Game ripoff in which people are kidnapped and hunted as prey, shows the hunters in the film referring to the hunted as "deplorables," which Dreher, following the age-old conservative formula of judging movies they haven't seen by their collateral materials, took as an assault by Hollywood on conservatives. Other rightwingers have picked up the cry, and Fox suggests that Trump was talking about this during his latest brain-fart about Hollywood, even though he didn't mention the movie and in fact referred to Hollywood's "racism," which seems not to be a factor in The Hunt.

Snopes is, as you would expect, more cautious about the alleged connection and more sensible overall:
However, the ideology and political affiliation of the characters who hunt and kill what appear to be working-class people from largely rural areas remains unclear, despite the aforementioned websites’ repeated and emphatic descriptions of them as “liberal” and “left-wing” elites. Notwithstanding the context of a fictional horror movie, it should be unnecessary to point out that hunting human beings for sport has never been a tenet of Enlightenment liberalism or modern-day American progressivism. 
Equally, it should be obvious to any mature consumer of culture that a movie that portrays wealthy psychopaths paying to hunt and kill other human beings is not likely to reflect well on the wealthy psychopaths, despite PJ Media’s claim that “The Hunt” actually “promotes violence against ‘deplorables.'”
(Snopes is referring to this dumb Matt Margolis PJ Media thing, which cites the Steve Scalise shooting as evidence of liberal bloodthist.) "It should be unnecessary to point out" are of course famous last words in the bad-faith festival that is modern conservative discourse. In fact Dreher seems to understand that the film's intentions are as yet unknown, but spreads his paranoia capaciously enough that no matter what it turns out to be, he can still be one outraged JustTheTip Trumper:
If you watch the trailer, it’s clear that the liberal elites — talk about your armed Social Justice Warriors! — are not portrayed as good. Still, what the hell could NBC Universal be thinking? They are treating the hunting down and murdering of white conservatives because they are white conservatives as entertainment. Or, more neutrally, they are presenting political mass murder as sport. For all we know, this movie will make the Red Staters out to be heroes. That’s beside the point. In a time of deep and rage-filled political division in this country, in which unhinged people are committing politically-motivated mass murders, this is insanely irresponsible. You cannot convince me that this isn’t an example of wish fulfillment on the part of the Hollywood executives making this movie. 
Universal is stirring up and exploiting primal hatreds. And these cretins wonder why so many people hate them, and vote for Trump. At least now it’s more out in the open than ever.
We last saw this kind of willful misreading in the wingnut sputterfest over Shakespeare in the Park's Julius Caesar which, against all logic, conservatives claimed was inciting violence against Trump. Lord knows they're always comfortable misinterpreting things, but I think they're even more eager to do so with movies, plays, novels etc. because they realize even the simplest works of art have power they neither possess nor understand, and the only way they can deal with it is by squeezing its meanings into tiny bullet-shaped units of propaganda.

Thursday, August 08, 2019

A LITTLE HELP FOR A LOCAL HERO.

Longtime readers of alicublog -- not to mention many, many citizens of New York and elsewhere -- know about Lach, the founder of the Anti-Folk scene and compère at its flagship The Fort in all its incarnations.

Well, things are exceedingly tough for Lach right now. I don't want to get too deep into it but it involves a very sick family member and the difficulty of keeping things together under such circumstances, especially for someone who makes a living in music. (Euterpe offers generous benefits but she pays lousy.)

So please pass it around: https://sweetrelief.org/emergency-aid-benefit-for-antifolk-founder-lach/. Thanks.

Tuesday, August 06, 2019

HOW DARE YOU ACCUSE ME OF SUPPORTING MY BELOVED PRESIDENT!

I've been seeing some stupid shit in the news lately but this Joaquin Castro thing -- where wingnuts are flipping out because Castro tweeted the names of top Texas Trump donors, which information is public -- beats all. I'm seeing highly-placed Republicans claiming these donors were doxxed because the names appeared in a tweet (in addition to the Federal Elections Commission website).

Though they're pretending to be developmentally disabled, these people aren't dumb -- merely limited: They know they've fucked up so bad that all they have left is racism and victimhood, and they know right the moment is not a good time to lay on the racism, so any opportunity they get to play the victim, they're taking.

And this person ain't dumb either, but has reasons to pretend to be:


The dangerous trend of publishing FEC data! If you like, go to the thread and be treated to Socratic dialogue like this:


These Republican donors are especially delicate, I guess -- so delicate even the famously liberal Times has to acknowledge it --  and must be protected from scrutiny. Maybe it's time for Citizens United II. That rummy Kavanaugh is all in for the big win!

I think a large part of the appeal of Bernie Sanders is due to a growing awareness among a growing number of people that the people we thought were our friends are most definitely not our friends.

UPDATE. I've unlocked a Roy Edroso Breaks It Down newsletter installment about where this is all going to end up. Enjoy!