Today’s opining on the public discourse.
You know, I’d really like it if so many of our elected officials didn’t sound just like Teabaggers. I’ve come across more snippets of Rep. Trent Franks’s performance at the Take Back America confab, and might I just say this is conduct unbecoming to a Congressman:
Rep. Trent Franks (R) of Arizona has been moving fairly aggressively lately towards the edge of the right-wing cliff. By agreeing to appear at an extremist conference in St. Louis over the weekend, Franks further cemented his position as one of the caucus’ most unhinged members.
But if there are any lingering doubts, consider the fact that the Arizona congressman labeled President Obama an “enemy of humanity” at the event.
“Obama’s first act as president of any consequence, in the middle of a financial meltdown, was to send taxpayers’ money overseas to pay for the killing of unborn children in other countries…there’s almost nothing that you should be surprised at after that.
“We shouldn’t be shocked that he does all these other insane things. A president that has lost his way that badly, that has no ability to see the image of God in these little fellow human beings, if he can’t do that right, then he has no place in any station of government and we need to realize that he is an enemy of humanity.”
Remember, he thinks the president is “insane.”
And here’s his staff’s feeble effort at damage control (h/t):
Bethany Haley, spokeswoman for Franks, said the congressman was referring to “unborn humanity” and should have clarified his statement.
Because that makes it sound so much better. Only the minds of madmen think that helps.
And I’m sure the freaks and fantatics at the conference happily swallowed that excuse (unless, of course, they were pissed at Franks for backpedaling). After all, they’re the ones who’ve decided the President is, indeed, a Muslim:
At the How to Take Back America conference last weekend, attended by several Republican lawmakers
, former Reagan official and prominent neoconservative Frank Gaffney
, right-wing historian Bill Federer, and Christian activist Walid Shoebat hosted a panel on “How to understand Islam.” An attendee of the panel asked the three speakers if they would consider President Obama a Christian or a Muslim, given his “roots.” While Gaffney gave a now familiar
response linking Obama to the Muslim Brotherhood, Federer and Shoebat provided new theories, which elicited praise from the crowd:
GAFFNEY: If Bill Clinton, on the basis of special interest pandering and identity politics, was properly called the first Black American President, on that same basis, Barack Obama should be called the first Muslim American President. […] But there is evidence that a lot of Muslims think he is Muslim. But whether he is or whether he isn’t, the key to me, is is he pursuing that is indistinguishable in important respects from that of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose mission ladies and gentlemen, we know from a trial in Dallas last year, is to quote to destroy Western civilization from within by its own miserable hand. That’s what we need to keep our eye on.
FEDERER: In Islam, if your father is a Muslim, you’re automatically a Muslim. Since Barack’s father, stepfather, and grandfather were all Muslim, the Muslim world views him as Muslim. Mohammad allowed his warriors to say they’re not Muslim to gain advantage and um, but he’s uh, Islam permits you to lie to advance Islam, Saul Alinsky allows you to lie to advance your communist agenda, you can put them together.
SHOEBAT: I came from an American mother, Obama came from an American mother. I came from a Muslim father, Obama came from a Muslim father. […] Did you know that your President knows how to do the call to the prayer in eloquent classical Arabic? […] No one can do this in classical Arabic language unless he grew up and was raised as a Muslim.
Um. How about anybody who can use Google and listen to a recording? Back in college, in fact, I had the whole thing memorized. In Arabic. And my family’s a bunch of white rednecks from Indiana.
How divorced from reality is the right? Well, we not only have Teabaggers and Teabaggy Congresscritters, Tenthers, Birthers, Deathers, and whatever the fuck you call a bunch of dumbfucks who get together to feed each other conspiracy theories and some of the most idiotic “evidence” that the President’s a Muslim ever cooked up by a fevered mind – we also have Richard Cohen deciding that a President making an announcement whilst flanked by two world leaders is not “presidential:”
Richard Cohen’s columns are getting increasingly difficult to read, and even more difficult to understand.
Sooner or later it is going to occur to Barack Obama that he is the president of the United States. As of yet, though, he does not act that way, appearing promiscuously on television and granting interviews like the presidential candidate he no longer is. The election has been held, but the campaign goes on and on. The candidate has yet to become commander in chief.
Take last week’s Group of 20 meeting in Pittsburgh. There, the candidate-in-full commandeered the television networks and the leaders of Britain and France to give the Iranians a dramatic warning. Yet another of their secret nuclear facilities had been revealed and Obama, as anyone could see, was determined to do something about it — just don’t ask what.
As criticism goes, this is pretty odd. President Obama talking to television reporters about current events from the White House is, apparently, not “presidential.” Why? Because Richard Cohen says so. The public disagrees — recent polls show Americans entirely comfortable with the amount of time the president spends communicating through the media — but that apparently doesn’t matter.
But more important is the notion that Obama, standing alongside British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, was also not presidential enough in publicly revealing the existence of a secret Iranian nuclear facility. The problem, as Cohen sees it, is that the Western leaders warned Iran, but were vague about potential consequences.
It’s unclear why Cohen found this so offensive. Obama’s goal was to give the U.S. leverage, and put Iran on the defensive, in advance of this week’s talks in Geneva — representatives of the permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, Germany, and Iran will meet, and Obama, Brown, and Sarkozy added an increased “sense of urgency” to the discussions.
Indeed, President Obama seems to have played this very well. After achieving a victory
on Thursday with the U.N. Security Council, his remarks on Friday had exactly the intended effect. Joe Cirincione, president of the Ploughshares Fund, said Obama “played Iran perfectly, to isolate Iran, unite all the other countries around him, with an open hand to Iran, and then he springs the trap.” Even a Washington Times
, “Not only did the president look strong, he looked cunning.”
I’m too tired for this shit. You all have fun Googling Bush flanked by various and sundry world leaders whilst making vague pronouncements, and see if you can find any Cons bitching about how “unpresidential” that was. Bet you a dollar you’ll find plenty of the former and none of the latter.
Time now for our next installment of “But Really, We’re Not Racists!” If that’s the case, I can’t wait to hear the compelling explanation for this:
BLACK MAN ORDERED NOT TO RUN BY REPUBLICANS
You know Larry Elder: the African-American, Californian, libertarian, popular radio host and firebrand. He’s been around for a while, and he’s a solid presence on the California media-and-politics scene. Elder is a serious name and presence among California Republicans. He just wrapped up his radio show. “Why,” you might ask, “doesn’t Larry Elder run for the Senate?”
There is an answer accorinding(sic) to many of Elder’s friends at the Republican Convention — Senator Cornyn and the NRSC told him not to.
How incompetent is this? The NRSC actually told a popular African-American with statewide name recognition to NOT run? Last I checked, our party isn’t overflowing with those.
Oh, and the NRSC expects Carly Fiorina to lose to Barbara Boxer — and they told a talk radio host this?
This is so full of win.
Mind you, it’s Red State breaking this news. I don’t leap to see racism in every little misstep by the right, but like I said, it’ll be interesting to hear what the alternative explanation is.
And, finally, I have big news. I am 95% of what’s destroying America:
Phyllis Schlafly, the anti-Equal Rights Amendment activist who heads the Eagle Forum, hosted the right-wing conference How To Take Back America last weekend. Several GOP members of Congress
attended the conference, and each paid their respects to Schlafly for her leadership in the conservative movement. Schlafly delivered several speeches and led a discussion advocating traditional roles for women as well as warning about the dangers of feminism and blasting single mothers:
I submit to you that the feminist movement is the most dangerous, destructive force in our society today. […] My analysis is that the gays are about 5% of the attack on marriage in this country, and the feminists are about 95%. […] I’m talking about drugs, sex, illegitimacy, drop outs, poor grades, run away, suicide, you name it, every social ill comes out of the fatherless home.
Ladies, pour yourselves a drink. We finally beat out Teh Gays as the right’s biggest enemy in the Culture Wars.
I’m especially proud of my dear heart sister NP, who’s busily undermining the sacred institution from within by being a happily married wife and mother. Woot!