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Birthers, Death Threats, and the Rising Tide of Antidemocratic Hatred [Aug. 5th, 2009|12:03 pm]
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Salon has this handy source for refuting all of the idiotic claims of the Birther Movement (BM) impugning Barack Obama's eligibility to be President. It won't do any good, of course, since these morons, like all other conspiracy-buffs, simply ignore contervailing evidence and go on repeating the same long-disproven allegations over an over again. But at least you'll have gone on record with a refutation.

Current de-facto BM "leader" Orly Taitz (who seems to harbor doubts as to whether Obama's mother is really dead) had a rather revealing meltdown on MSNBC, in which she seemed to say (among other nonsensical non-sequiturs) something like "Who cares about Ann Coulter? She is not an Israeli!" Then, a little later she tells her MSNBC hosts "You will be done, you will not be on TV for too long..." All of which led me to wonder whether Taitz, who was "responding" to MSNBC from Tel Aviv, might represent part of an effort by Israel's current right-wing government, and/or AIPAC, to incite hatred against a President whose support for Israel is less than Israel's right-wing religious zealots are accustomed to getting. Israel's far right made a hero of the guy who murdered Yitzhak Rabin; so we really can't expect them to be any more respectful toward another country's elected leaders.

A more disturbing manifestation of the insanity that still grips the Republican Party can be found in this article:

WASHINGTON - A new book about the U.S. Secret Service reveals that threats against President Barack Obama increased 400 percent over former President George Bush and that the agency may not be able to handle the extra load.

Obama reportedly receives more than 30 potential death threats a day.


(And why is the Secret Service "not able to handle the extra load?" Because they've been chronically understaffed since they were rolled into Bush's brand-new consolidated "security" service, the DHS. I warned against this sort of consolidation here. Once again, the Republicans' claim that they're "protecting Americans" is proven a lie. But I digress...)

Seen in a vacuum, the birfers' wild, attention-hogging accusations can easily be viewed as yet another bunch of loons desperately embracing yet another unhinged conspiracy theory; but this particular group of loons are not operating in a vacuum: they're being coddled and pandered to by a Republican Party in the grip of the irresponsible radical right; and their paranoid delusions -- and all-but-explicit refusal to accept our current elected government as legitimate -- are part and parcel of the entire pattern of delusion we've seen in all factions of the radical right since 1993, from the militia/survivalist loons, to the breathtakingly unhinged hatred of Hillary Clinton and even Clelsea, to the David Koresh sympathizers, to the "pro-life" terrorists, to those who routinely equate lawful dissent with support for large-scale terrorism, to the Republican operatives now inciting mobs to disrupt town meetings to prevent Democrats from talking or listening to their constituents.

The Republicans are no longer a "loyal opposition," and have not been since 1993; they're nothing but Nazi thugs, bigots and con-artists in fancier suits, shamelessly disrupting any adult debate -- and any democracy -- that they can't win. The Secret Service are already feeling the consequences of this infantilism; and soon, if we don't take a stand to defend what we've won so far, the rest of the country will be feeling them as well.

SPECIAL SHOUT-OUT TO THE BIRFERS: if any of you birfers find this site and think you can gum it up with your pathetic nonsense, please be advised that a) my readers are educated enough to see through your BS; and b) I will NOT give you yet another forum to repost the same long-debunked stories you've been pasting everywhere else. You don't listen to us, so we in the real world won't be listening to you. And I will not allow my blog to be used to incite or justify violent action against our duly-elected President. Go fuck yourselves.

UPDATE: I have just received the following correction in the comments: You misheard her. She did not say 'Ann Coulter is not an Israeli' she said 'Ann Coulter is not an attorney.' So instead of stupidly pulling rank as an Israeli, she stupidly pulled rank as a lawyer, despite her obvious ignorance of the law and her abysmal inability to answer a single common-sense question.

My questions about the possible loony-Israeli-right/AIPAC connection to this fake-controversy, however, still stand.
LinkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-05 04:20 pm (UTC)

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What the heck - there really ARE people who are Birfers? No, really? I had no idea.

I think BM is the perfect acronym for them!
[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-05 04:33 pm (UTC)

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Oh yeah, they're real, and they gum up EVERY Web site that even mentions their pet peeves with the same utter nonsense that got smacked down on the last Web site they gummed up. They're probably not many, but they're making a lot of noise on the Web, and a lot of Republicans who couldn't accept "That One" in the White House are latching onto them as yet another excuse for the same old hatred. I advise you to read the Salon links, but NOT the letters posted in response to them -- that's more attention than the BM deserves.
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-05 04:36 pm (UTC)

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Wow! This is amazing to me that this is even going on. I mean, I have seen the damned birth certificate already! It's not difficult to figure out.

Is this a serious movement (do people really believe this crap?) or is it just a tactic to take the focus off of other stuff...or both?

I plan to read the rest of your post and links when I get home and I will have more comments, I am sure. leaving work in...3....2....1....WHEE!!!!
[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-05 04:57 pm (UTC)

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It's both: a serious movement by the loony right to nestle themselves in a secure delusion that the scary man with the scary ideas about how we all gotta pitch in and fix the country really doesn't exist and can be ignored.
[User Picture]From: virginia_fell
2009-08-05 04:36 pm (UTC)

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This icon describes perfectly my feelings toward this entry.
[User Picture]From: sun_in_splendor
2009-08-05 06:37 pm (UTC)

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A long while ago I realized that, to many Republicans, "the enemy" wasn't communists, or Russia, or China, of even international terrorists. To them "the enemy" is Democrats, liberals, and any American who dares to disagree with them, and for the sake of defeating their perceived "enemy" they are willing to destroy America.
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-05 07:54 pm (UTC)

I read your links! Holy Jeeze!

(Link)

Wow – Alan Keyes is also in this mess and against Obama. I knew he was a nutcase, but wow! And they have *demands*?

And this:
In Connecticut one lout suggested Sen. Chris Dodd commit suicide as a cure for his recently announced prostate cancer. "How come we don't just give Chris Dodd painkillers? Like a handful of them at a time! He can wash it down with Ted Kennedy's whiskey!" Maryland Rep. Frank Kratovil was hung in effigy. Rep. Tim Bishop needed a police escort back to his car. In Austin, Texas, a blue outpost in that red state, Rep. Lloyd Doggett was shouted down by abusive GOP protesters.

What the hell is going on in the US? Are all the racists and weirdoes crawling out of the woodwork? Do they really feel comfortable enough to talk about this stuff without being ashamed? Why aren’t people like McCain and Lieberman speaking out against this (or are they and haven’t I heard)?

I knew some of this was going on (remember those charming Tea Parties) but I had no idea there was this much lunacy. I haven’t watched Fox News in a few months because I was taking a break. Perhaps I should tune in to see what kind of cockamamie stories they are producing.

And last but not least – Whoopie Goldberg believes that men didn’t land on the moon?

What the hell?
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-05 07:56 pm (UTC)

Re: I read your links! Holy Jeeze!

(Link)

You misheard her. She did not say 'Ann Coulter is not an Israeli' she said 'Ann Coulter is not an attorney.'

HAHAHAHAHA. I have to admit I laughed like hell at your correction.

"Your photo stands here!"
[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-05 08:24 pm (UTC)

Re: I read your links! Holy Jeeze!

(Link)

Yeah, and that's after I listened to the quote four times! And no, I wasn't thinking about Israel at the time, though the "Tel Aviv" tag at the bottom of the screen may have given me a subconscious hint.

Oh, and she's also a dentist and a real-estate specialist! She could fix your teeth, sue to get pesky lefties out of your country's government, AND sell your house. Reginald should be worried about the competition. Not.
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-06 11:13 am (UTC)

This has nothing to do with Obama

(Link)

This link has nothing to do with Obama, but knowing your interests, I thought you would like to read this gem about L. Ron Hubbard from today's Times:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article6740831.ece
[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-06 02:34 pm (UTC)

Re: This has nothing to do with Obama

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Thanks. I'm amazed at how such a transparently creepy and bogus cult as $cientology managed to intimidate so many people into silence for so long.

And no, it has nothing DIRECTLY to do with Obama, but it's part of our current problem of resurgent religious fanaticism and intolerance. $cientology is not the only church/cult using fake outrage and intimidation, legal or illegal, to silence their critics.
[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-05 08:17 pm (UTC)

Re: I read your links! Holy Jeeze!

(Link)

Imagine a loyal patriotic German who supported Hitler from his early days on, because he thought that was the right thing for Germany's vital interests. Now imagine how he must feel after the war, when his whole country has been destroyed all around him, and those death-camps are exposed for all the world to see, as a direct result of the people and policies he wholeheartedly supported. Now you have in inkling as to how Republicans feel when the unmitigated disastrous failures that resulted from their actions are exposed for all to see; and the kind of liberal elitist they hated all along is now trying to get everyone together to clean up the mess.

You got it -- a total freakout of Biblical proportions, over and above the normal craziness that comes with bad times. The Republicans could probably take it if only a few of their policies had failed; but to have to face the failure of EVERYTHING they've done, is simply too much for their minds to digest at once.
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-06 03:34 pm (UTC)

Obama as Joker

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Have you seen this bit of news about Obama as the Joker:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/05/AR2009080503876.html?nav=hcmodule


President Obama made up as the Heath Ledger-era Joker, with the word "socialism" emblazoned below. The new poster has two basic thrusts: Obama is a socialist, or a crypto-socialist; and he's somehow like the Joker, unpredictable and dangerous. The anonymous poster, found in Los Angeles, has been the talk of the blogosphere. (Ktla)

[User Picture]From: motherwell
2009-08-06 05:23 pm (UTC)

Re: Obama as Joker

(Link)

Obmba, unpredictable? They're kidding, right?

I guess they were, as the anonymity suggests...
[User Picture]From: peaceful_fox
2009-08-08 07:10 am (UTC)

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I sometimes check out the Obama blogs on Live Journal but I generally don’t subscribe. I noticed that you posted one of your recent posts (I can’t remember which, sorry. It was possibly this one) and people took offence at your use of the word “Nazi”.

I really don’t think people know how National Socialism started in Germany. They don’t realize that it sounded really good after Germany was devastated in WWII, the economy was bad, people lost a sense of hope, and they *wanted someone to blame this on*.

I see parallels to what’s happening in the US right now, and also what’s happening in the EU. In Austria and Poland right wing governments and political views are becoming popular again. In the UK the BNP is becoming more vocal. This kind of thing often follows an economic downturn. It needs to be monitored.

See, WWII is starting to fade out of the memories of many people. They know the Nazis were horrible, but they don’t know the history behind the rise of the National Socialist party. It wasn't like Hitler just went in took over - people did support him. As you know, people in the US supported him! Then some uneducated people see the word “socialism” and think “Obama” and then they put two and two together to get 5 – Omaba is a Socialist and a Nazi. People are spouting terms like “socialism”, “fascism” and “national socialism” without really knowing what the terms mean and this is where some of the confusion lies. You using the term “early Nazism” doesn’t help them understand if they don’t know how the rise of Nazism started in Germany. They looked like a good deal to the people when they started – it was called the German Worker’s Party after all.

So, I see your concern with what is happening in the US and agree. I just think some of the readers aren’t getting it. You are right. I am not hysterical about what I see, but I am concerned and it bears watching and in some cases acting upon.

Sorry this is so long, but this is very important to me.


Edited at 2009-08-08 07:12 am (UTC)