Fox & Fiends

Generally reviled former Vice-President Dick Cheney hit the “curvy couch” of Fox’s most unctuous right-wing sycophants this morning to promote his new book, In My Imagination

Unsurprisingly, Cheney believes it imperative for the U.S. government to continue wasting a TRILLION dollars per year on the military, preferring instead to tackle the country’s troubling deficit problems by slashing entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare. This from a man who when in office, cavalierly told former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill, that “deficits don’t matter.”

Cost of War

Fox News has suddenly become aware of the fact that wars cost money!

In fact, most of the exorbitant costs of ordinance that the “Fox & Fiends” crew is now shockingly alarmed about are actually expenses that are already bought and paid for (albeit on credit), but it sure does seem funny that they never batted an eye at the cost of the Iraq War – a completely needless venture that some have estimated will end up costing the United States in excess of $3 trillion.

Google’s Islamic “Bug”

I have to admit this is quite a strange little anomaly on the part of Google. It seems that if you enter the search expression “islam is” (minus quotes of course) Google offers no suggestions at all, whereas the same expression used with other religions readily offers up a number of prompts (mostly pejorative in nature — e.g., “christianity is”… bullshit; not a religion; a lie; a cult; wrong; fake; et cetera).

Google officials purport this anomaly is a “bug” of some kind in their algorithm; a claim that I think seems more than a bit dubious, all considered. But who knows? Go try it yourself and draw your own conclusions.

Just for fun, here’s what Google offers up on the Dear Leader using the exact same kind of search.

Michael Ignatieff’s result (just two suggestions, one being “an idiot”) is much less amusing.

Terra! Terra! Terra!

Sorry to inflict more Fox & Friends on you, but this really is beyond the pale. On this morning’s program, Wayne Simmons, a so-called “Terror Analyst” (i.e., former CIA operative, now raving wingnut and occasional columnist for the far right-wing magazine Human Events), responded to Brian Kilmeade’s query whether the increase in “major terror incidents” over the last year is because America has new president as follows:

Yeah, listen this is, ugh, and you’ve heard me say this many times before — nothing has changed, in fact it’s only getting worse since the coronation of the boy king fifteen months ago. It is, again, not an accident that every third world despot, every third world despot; from Venezuela through Cuba to North Korea, virtually anyone in the Middle East who decides they want to take a shot at the United States and our allies, is doing just that. These guys now that are starting to come out the woodwork are EMBOLDENED. They recognize, as do the third-world nations, the dictators, there will be NO repercussions from the Obama administration.

Good grief, what a lunatic.

To get the full flavour of Simmons’ madness, might I recommend the following article from Human Events titled “Cheerleader in Chief” where he decries virtually everything about the Obama administration “from the phony ‘stimulus’ package to socialist health care” and foreign policy that is “ignorant of important principles and completely at odds with the fact that America is a superpower.”

With regards to the “Global War on Terra” Simmons admiringly quotes the following passage from Winston Churchill’s 1899 book The River War: An Historical Account of the Reconquest of the Soudan:

How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property, either as a child, a wife, or a concubine, must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men.

Perhaps Simmons should have read a little further in that same book where he would have encountered this passage also written by the young Churchill:

…there are many people in England, and perhaps elsewhere, who seem to be unable to contemplate military operations for clear political objects, unless they can cajole themselves into the belief that their enemy are utterly and hopelessly vile. To this end the Dervishes, from the Mahdi and the Khalifa downwards, have been loaded with every variety of abuse and charged with all conceivable crimes. This may be very comforting to philanthropic persons at home; but when an army in the field becomes imbued with the idea that that the enemy are vermin who cumber the earth, instances of barbarity may easily be the outcome. This unmeasured condemnation is moreover as unjust as it is dangerous and unnecessary… We are told that the British and Egyptian armies entered Omdurman to free the people from the Khalifa’s yoke. Never were rescuers more unwelcome.

Substitute America for England and other parties in today’s conflict as appropriate and it seems clear that little has changed after more than a hundred years of territorial meddling and reckless adventurism by the Anglo-American Imperium in this troubled region of the world.

On Fox “News” and other right-wing talking shops however, it’s all so very simple: just “toughen up on terror” or as Simmons puts it: “locate, identify and kill” everyone suspected of being a terrorist — and if that results in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent Muslims and the displacement of millions more… well, so be it.


Michael Moore made a whole documentary about President Bush playing golf? Gee, I must have missed that one. Hmmm. Funny that neither Ms. Perino or any the Friendly Fox folks mentioned the fact that while Dubya may have given up golf (for the sake of the troops he’d sent to fight his illegal wars), he nonetheless spent fully one-third of his presidency on vacation.


Apparently, former Miss America and Fox & Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson thinks that leukemia can be treated in a hospital Emergency ward. Good grief…

Dumbest Argument, Ever

Republican Congressman Mark Kirk contends that if Gitmo detainees are moved to a maximum security facility in rural Illinois, it will become “ground zero for Jihadist terrorist plots” and other nefarious activities. Moreover, it could result in up to 2,000 al Qaeda members visiting Illinois! Gawd, what a moronic tool.

Meanwhile, in a joint statement issued today, David Keene, founder of American Conservative Union, Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, and former representative and presidential candidate Bob Barr say moving suspected terrorists to the Thomson, Illinois prison facility, “makes good sense.” Here’s their statement in full:

As it moves to close Guantanamo and develop policies for handling terrorism suspects going forward, the government should rely upon our established, traditional system of justice. This includes our system of federal prisons, which have repeatedly proven they can safely hold persons convicted of terrorism offenses.

We are confident that the government can preserve national security without resorting to sweeping and radical departures from an American constitutional tradition that has served us effectively for over two centuries.

Civilian federal courts are the proper forum for terrorism cases. Civilian prisons are the safe, cost effective and appropriate venue to hold persons convicted in federal courts. Over the last two decades, federal courts constituted under Article III of the U.S. Constitution have proven capable of trying a wide array of terrorism cases, without sacrificing either national security or fair trial standards.

Likewise the federal prison system has proven itself fully capable of safely holding literally hundreds of convicted terrorists with no threat or danger to the surrounding community.

Take that, right-wing bedwetters!

Countdown: WPITW

As predicted by some commenters here earlier today, the usual suspects on the right-wing naturally sided with the whacked-out, Obama-hating woman at Barney Frank’s town hall meeting the other day.

By the way, if you’re unfamiliar with the Bill Hicks reference at the end there, I’ll save you the trouble of looking it up. WARNING: Not work-safe material!

Update: And seeing as we’re considering people living on another planet entirely… Dodo Can Completely Get the Wrong End of the Stick. Somehow (it’s beyond me exactly how) Maria thinks that the woman in the video who’s holding a poster of Obama defaced to look like Hitler and asking Barney Frank why he’s defending “Nazi” policies is… get this: “a lefty nutjob”! Huh? Good grief, what an idiot.

Rubes Gone Wild!

It’s rather sad really how completely duped these witless pawns are being played by the private for-profit health insurance industry and the zealously fanatical right-wing ideologues that all too happily enable them. Maybe their tune will change should they unfortunately become one of the million Americans tragically driven into bankruptcy next year by a crushing avalanche of bills incurred as a result of fairly routine medical procedures…

But it’s not like these “spontaneous” grassroots movements are artificially contrived to assist powerful corporate interests in the protection of their egregiously lucrative price gouging schemes and callous profiteering that mercilessly sucks off the misery of those in genuine distress… Why, to think otherwise would suggest there might be a reprehensible level of cynicism, callous exploitation, and mean-spirited selfishness involved on the part of the relentless blood-sucking leeches gamely masquerading under the banners of “freedom” and entrepreneurial initiative — perish the thought!

More here on the efforts of right-wing extremists to disrupt any sensible discussion about health-care reform.

As a related aside, on The Daily Show last night there was a wonderful deconstruction of what Jon Stewart aptly called the evolutionary “Crank Cycle” abetted by the media — from the initial planting of the seed of right-wing talking points by Steve Ducey on the Fox & Friends morning program, to its almost verbatim reiteration by an irate “crank” at a subsequent town hall meeting, to the reporting of the furious outburst as “news” by… none other than Steve Ducey on Fox & Friends, followed by sober “analysis” from some academic-looking “expert” suggesting it was an expression of grassroots discontent. And so the Mighty Wurlitzer (aka “Right Wing Noise Machine”) goes…