Terrorism plus trolling. O brave new world that has such people in 't.
Guys, I hate to defend Candace Owens, a garbage human being who loves riling up low-information idiots, but no, she did not "inspire" the racist who murdered 49 people at two mosques in New Zealand. Yes, even though he almost certainly agrees with her about immigration. He's trolling us, and while hatred should always be taken seriously and studied, the things said by racists, especially when they're repeating all their favorite little inside jokes, shouldn't necessarily be taken at face value, because sarcasm and shitposting are part of the online fascist's toolkit. Apart from the obvious commitment to racism and the desire to eradicate nonwhite immigrants, statements in the shooter's online manifesto should be considered skeptically. Let's do some unpacking.
We're not going to link to the copy of the manifesto we're working from, both because it'e evil and because hosts are scraping copies of it off their servers quickly enough that no links are likely to last. Believe me, you can find it without much effort if you want to see the filth.
Instead, take a look at this smart analysis of the manifesto's trolling by journalist Robert Evans, who knows a thing or two about terrorists and their recruiting methods. This manifesto has several audiences: potential future white nationalists, but also unwary journalists seeking to comb through it for easy answers to why someone would murder people in a house of worship. The title is straightforward enough: "The Great Replacement" partakes of the same white paranoia that motivated the Pittsburgh synagogue shooter and the marchers who chanted "Jews will not replace us" in Charlottesville: There's a shadowy conspiracy by very bad people to destroy the beautiful white race through immigration and high minority birth rates.
But as Evans puts it, the manifesto is also full of rhetorical booby traps:
A bad thing happened last night.
Racist terrorists killed 49 people at two mosques in New Zealand, targeting worshippers during Friday prayers. The attack appears to have been carried out by a single shooter, a 28-year-old Australian man, who has been charged with murder. New Zealand authorities have arrested four people, although they said one was not involved in the violence. The shooter wrote a manifesto claiming he was acting to save white people from immigration of nonwhites, and that he considered himself "a lawful, uniformed combatant." Authorities said none of the four arrested had been on terror watch lists.
The number of injured is also high; Christchurch health authorities stated 48 patients, "ranging from young children to adults with gunshot wounds," are being treated at Christchurch Hospital alone, and that additional patients with gunshot wounds had been taken to "other health facilities in the community." Injuries ranged from critical to minor. Remember; "wounded" by an assault rifle does not necessarily mean "lucky."
She is not moving on.
Conservatives like to dismiss Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as a former "waitress and bartender," because liberals are the coastal "elites" who have no respect for working people. They've even negatively compared her to Sarah Palin, an intellectual lightweight from their own party. Unfortunately, Ocasio-Cortez complicates this narrative because she's actually competent. During recent congressional hearings, she's proven deft, serving up lethal inquiries that leave witnesses asking for their mommies.
Tuesday Ocasio-Cortez publicly spanked Wells Fargo CEO Tim Sloan during his appearance before the House Financial Services Committee. The committee is examining the company's "pattern of consumer abuses," a benign description of its reported "practices of predatory lending, misleading and defrauding customers."
Gay-hating VP is neither honorable nor decent.
Elizabeth Warren fully believes Donald Trump is terrible, but she's not delusional enough to think Mike Pence will prove some great relief. Trump's lickspittle vice president is no mild-mannered Gerald Ford who'll help end our current "long national nightmare." Pence is a queer-hating religious bigot. Warren intends to tell you this, very slowly and clearly, until everyone has wised up.
Warren was on "Morning Joe" yesterday, which is what we guess you have to do when you're running for president. Co-host Mika Brzezinski asked her if she thought
Brutus Pence was an "honorable man." Warren quickly and reflexively said, "No," as if Brzezinski had offered the Massachusetts senator Manhattan clam chowder. Brzezinski was seemingly stunned, because Democrats are expected to be "civil" and talk about their "friends across the aisle" as if the past 30 years of political history never happened. She asked Warren if she'd "like to expound upon that." Warren said, "Sure!" in that adorably enthusiastic way she has. She's up for any opportunity to tell the world why Pence ain't shit.
WARREN: Anyone who engages in the kind of homophobia and attacks on people who are different from himself is not an honorable person. That's not what honorable people do.
Not an accused rapist. Just very understanding of them.
While all the usual terribleness rolls on, so does the greatest single project of Donald Trump and the Republicans: filling the federal courts with so many rightwing judges that even if the country elects Democrats for the next 30 years, there'll be at least an even chance that progressive legislation may be declared null and void in the name of "individual freedom." Forget that they're no good at passing laws; the Republicans are confirming virtually every last incompetent stooge the Federalist Society can dredge up.
Consider Neomi Rao, Trump's nominee to fill the seat on the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit left vacant when Brett Kavanaugh boofed his way onto the Supreme Court. Rao has never been a judge, so let's put her on the most important stopping points before the Supremes. And hey, she even has a history of problematic writings in college, not unlike another Trump appointee, Ryan Bounds, whose nomination failed when Tim Scott and Marco Rubio withdrew their support. Not this time: All the Republicans in the Senate voted to move Rao's nomination forward yesterday, and she's expected to win final confirmation today.
Are you a HUNGRY HUNGRY HIPPOS Trump voter, but you're scared of getting murdered all the time every time you try to go out to dinner? There's an app for that!
Are you a conservative who likes to go to the Olive Garden for luxurious fine dining but you're scared you will get persecuted to death by an antifa while your head is balls deep in a bucket of bottomless breadsticks?
Are you a Trump-voting lady who likes to go to the TJ Maxx bargain emporium to find all the latest bargains, but you are rightfully scared a lib will see that discounted Vera Bradley clutch in your hand, the one you FINDERS KEEPERS-ED before they did, but you won't get to take it home because the lib will say "By the power of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, I do socialism redistribution to that clutch you found, MINE MINE MINE"?
Are you a godly manly butch Trump man who is too chickenshit to go to the Big Lots without his substitute penis appendage, AKA "gun"?
Are you longing for a place where nobody says "Cool 4-cylinder Mustang, you loser Nazi," but you know they are being sarcastic when they say "cool"?
Have you had winner winner chicken dinners pried out of your cold dead hands?
Thank heterosexual Caucasian Jesus, because there is an app for you! It is called 63red Safe, which makes no sense at all and we are just going to skip right over that, and it is just a good thing to have if you are a HUNGRY HUNGRY HIPPOS Trump voter wearing a MAGA hat who just knows if they go to the Cracker Barrel, they will meet certain death/persecution/eyerolls.
It's The Sunday Show Rundown!!
Let's begin our Sunday show rundown this week with Republican "strategist" and Mr. "
Kamala Harris/Cory Booker/Obama black primary" himself, Alex Castellanos. On ABC's "This Week" with
George Stephanopoulos Martha Raddatz, the panel began with a discussion about Ilhan Omar's unfortunately worded comments about Israel, and Nancy Pelosi's decision to focus a House resolution on denouncing hate and bigotry in all its forms. The vote itself received bipartisan support in condemnation of hate ... except for 24 Republicans.
While many sensible people would see this as a larger victory in condemning hate, Alex Castellanos is NOT one of these people:
Ilhan Omar, you get back here right now!
The House voted yesterday on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism and bigotry of all kinds, like anti-Muslim hatred and white supremacy. The measure passed overwhelmingly, but was opposed by 23 Republicans because of their very deep principles, most of which amounted to the principle that Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) needed to be the sole focus of condemnation because she's the only source of hatred in America today. Oh, yes, and one brave R, white nationalist Steve King of Iowa, bravely voted "present," because darned if you're going to trap him into supporting a condemnation of hatred. Let's take a tour of the very good reasons some Republicans gave for opposing a resolution opposing hatred, shall we?
Several of those who opposed the resolution were quite clear about their reason: This was supposed to be a chance to accuse Ilhan Omar of hating all Jews because she said some really clumsy stupid things about how she was being required to vow "allegiance to a foreign country" -- which is true, in that we are literally outlawing a boycott of Israel, Texas is literally requiring anyone who contracts with it to vow allegiance to Israel, etc. -- but with words that evoke a stereotype (that Jews have a "dual allegiance") that was directly addressed in the text of the resolution. But that doesn't count because the resolution didn't specifically condemn Omar. Wyoming Republican Liz Cheney called the resolution a "sham" for not censuring Omar by name, and claimed it proves the entire party is now "controlled by far-left extremists who can't even muster the courage to stand up to blatant anti-Semitism." You know, as long as you ignore the multiple parts of the resolution condemning anti-Semitism in very specific terms.
Wingnuts: Condemning all bigots 'watered down' the resolution.
You probably heard the calls for the ritual disembowelment of Rep. Ilhan Omar, who has an unfortunate habit of criticizing Israel in language that reeks of anti-Semitic tropes. The House is now scheduled to vote on a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, but that sneaky Nancy Pelosi went and turned the resolution into a condemnation of all the many hatreds that have recently infected American politics. How is that even fair? This was supposed to reflect Democrats' DEEP RIFTS over how to deal with the only bigot in America, a single freshman Democrat from Minnesota, not an opportunity to reaffirm so-called American values! Guess maybe Pelosi isn't about to be overthrown after all; sorry, Fox News.
The resolution is a serious, detailed criticism of the rise of hatred in recent American politics, affirming the value of the First Amendment and freedom of religion, then drilling down into the wheareases:
The Banality Of Kirstjen.
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen took questions from the House Homeland Security Committee yesterday, although it would be a stretch to say she answered any. Nielsen stuck to the same line she's taken since last summer: The Trump administration never had a family separation policy, and please never mind all the times John Kelly said taking children from their parents would be an excellent way to deter asylum seekers, or multiple DHS documents discussing the goal of separating families.
Instead, Nielsen insisted there had only been a policy of prosecuting all lawbreakers at the border, although she eventually conceded that, sure, that led to children being taken from their families. But it was definitely not a family separation policy. More of a happy side effect, like when you beat suspects to extract information and they also happen to suffer and die.
Even the Republicans on the committee think he's a dick.
Rand Paul, the great libertarian and self-certified "eye doctor," had some very deep thoughts yesterday on Liberty and Freedom and the right of parents to let their kids and other people risk dying of communicable disease for the sake of Liberty. The Senate Health Education, Labor and Pensions Committee was holding an actual hearing -- yes, a US Senate hearing in the Trump era! -- on the threats posed to public health by recent measles outbreaks, and the Senator from Kentucky made a very important speech about health and freedom, and the dangers of evil government control. Why, if we mandate that children be vaccinated, aren't we really using VIOLENCE to make people conform, just for some alleged health benefits like "avoiding measles outbreaks" like the two currently hitting the USA?
Black man can't catch a break.
Rejected Gap Band cosplayer David Clarke is missing in action. He was once a frequent, shouty guest on Fox News back when there was a market for black conservatives calling out then-president Barack Obama as the real racist. Clarke might've guessed he'd cash in big time once Donald Trump was elected, but it looks like Clarke himself has become the "forgotten man."
The Daily Beast reported yesterday that the former Milwaukee sheriff is no longer welcome on Fox News, as if the network's suddenly a black cookout. It turns out he was effectively "banned" last year, and we're only just now noticing. Clarke apparently blames his fall on "the liberals" who run Fox News.
Jerry Falwell Jr. To Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: I Didn't Threaten To Shoot Muslims, I Just Threatened To Shoot YOU!
Our own personal Jesus.
False prophet Jerry Falwell Jr. has Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in his sights. Last week, during CPAC, Falwell threatened to shoot the congresswoman if she "came for his cows." For the record, Barack Obama was never going to take away people's guns and Ocasio-Cortez is not the Hamburglar. She has spoken about the need to address factory farming and perhaps reduce our meat consumption. Those are both fairly mainstream proposals to combat climate change. Only idiots would think Ocasio-Cortez wants to ban burgers. However, Falwell was on a panel with Donald Trump Jr., so there was idiocy to spare.
Greg Abbott, we don't even know you anymore.
Texas's great big hunt to manufacture some outrage over "legal aliens illegally registered to vote" started falling apart almost as soon as it was announced, since it was based on bad assumptions and bad use of data. Secretary of State David Whitley breathlessly announced in January his office had compiled a list of 98,000 registered voters listed as non-citizens by the Department of Public Safety (DPS), which runs the driver's license office. Worse, since 1996, some 58,000 of 'em had voted!!! Wingnut media and Donald Trump took to wailing about voter fraud even as nit-pickers pointed out the data was crap, because the DPS only had records on people who said they weren't citizens when they applied for a driver's license or photo ID. Tons of people on the list actually been naturalized citizens later, and were completely legal to vote. In fact, as three federal lawsuits against the fake list of suspicious voters have proceeded, DPS officials have said 25,000 people on the list had already proven they were citizens when Whitley's office released it. Long story short, it's a massive clusterfuck that's proving to be a huge embarrassment to both Whitley and to Gov. Greg Abbott, who appointed Whitley to the post in December.
And now that Whitley is facing a very difficult confirmation fight in the state Senate (yeah, he's been in the job with no "acting" title; we dunno, it's fucking Texas), Abbott has finally taken a brave stance on who's responsible for the embarrassing fucktangle: Not Whitley, who did the shitty "analysis," but DPS chief Steve McCraw, for generating the data in the first place. This is a bit of a problem since, as the invaluable Texas Tribune reports, DPS made clear to the SecState's office the data was flawed from the get-go.
Still, Abbot makes a compelling case, if by "compelling" you mean he's good at pointing anywhere but his shit-covered appointee and yelling "SOMETHING STINKS!"
Washington governor smacks down McCain's Green New Deal lies.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is running for president and his primary focus is fighting climate change. We are just a generation away from desperate scientists strapping their kids in rocket ships and sending them off to to be superheroes in disappointing movies. However, conservatives still act like it's 2000 and Al Gore is whining about trees. Why should they care about any of this?
Inslee appeared on "The View" Monday where he was grilled by resident Republicans Abby Huntsman and Meghan McCain. It was a tag-team concern trolling effort. Huntsman reminded Inslee that he doesn't just have to beat the dozen or so other Democrats and Bernie Sanders in the race but also eventually Donald Trump. We're pretty sure at least one of Inslee's advisers mentioned this to him. Huntsman wondered how Inslee hoped to defeat Trump with such a weak sauce platform as defending humanity from global catastrophe.
HUNTSMAN: "You saw [Trump] at CPAC. Whether you agree with him or not, he knows how to get people riled up. He gets headlines. He gets attention. The media's always talking about him. Climate change? That's not the number one issue for many, many people in this country."
Huntsman talks about Trump like Principal Rooney's secretary describing Ferris Bueller: "He's very popular, Jay. White nationalists, conspiracy theorists, wasteoids ... they all adore him. They think he's a righteous dude." She straight-up tells Inslee he's just too dull to beat Trump. Why would the media bother covering him and his boring "real" issues when they could devote air time to Trump's rambling, deranged declarations of fake national emergencies?
It's your Sunday Show Rundown!
Let's begin today's Sunday show roundup with National Security Adviser and least favorite Bolton (after Michael and Ramsey), John. Trump's NSA appeared on CNN's "State of The Union," proclaiming the "unquestionable success" of the second Trump/Kim summit, even though no deal was reached and Trump was humiliated. Jake Tapper asked Bolton about Trump's statements regarding Otto Warmbier, the American college student who was sent home in a coma from North Korea and died shortly after being returned to the US; Trump said at a press conference that Kim Jong Un denied knowing anything about Warmbier, and so case closed. Trump stated, "He tells me that he didn't know about it, and I will take him at his word. Those prisons are rough. They're rough places, and bad things happen. But I don't believe he knew about it."
TAPPER: He's going to take Kim Jong-un at his word that he didn't know about it. The Warmbier family put out a statement. They disagree. They say Kim Jong-un is responsible. Are they wrong?
BOLTON: Look, the president made it very clear he considers what happened to Otto Warmbier an act of brutality that's completely unacceptable to the American side. I have heard him before the summit itself, before the press conference, talk about how deeply he cared about Otto Warmbier and his family. The fact is, the best thing North Korea could do right now would be to give us a full accounting of what happened and who was responsible for it.
That's quite a change or non-commitment for Bolton. Especially when, shortly after Otto Warmbier's death, Bolton was basically egging on a full scale regime change in North Korea.
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