Archive for April, 2014

Yeah, I think that describes the Bundy militias pretty well.

A Democratic congressman from Nevada said in a letter this week that his constituents have reported the armed militia supporting rancher Cliven Bundy have set up checkpoints to verify the residency of anybody passing through.

Not content with restricting freedoms, they go for the personal threats against a US Senator.

Capitol Police in Washington said they are investigating threatening statements made against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Sounds like domestic terrorists to me.


UPDATE: It looks like there’s trouble in paradise due to some personality conflicts on the front lines:

In a YouTube interview with some super-patriot named Blaine Cooper,* who asked Mr. Bear for a “sitrep.” That is SO AUTHENTICALLY MILITARY and COOL! The sitrep was that Booda Bear was not especially impressed by Rhodes’s “high value intelligence” — which turns out to have come from an anonymous tip line. Bear also emphasized that such defections are bad for the tactical situation, since “this is a battle front in some sense of the word and to remove them is kind of ah — that’s some yellow cur — ya know, spineless backbone, piece of shit maneuvering right there.”

Booda Bear does not hold the Oath Keepers in very high regard.


UPDATE 2: It just keeps getting better. I’m waiting for the shooting war to begin between the two nutball factions.

The Oath Keepers took to their website and accused Bundy’s top Security crew, Booda Bear, Ryan Paine & Jerry ‘somebody’ of being FBI infiltrators.  This happened roughly 24 hours after Bundy’s top security crew, Booda Bear & his two underlings, Ryan & Jerry, kicked the Oath Keepers off the ranch and accused them of: “stealing’ being “deserters,” “traitors,” committing “treason of the highest order” and learning that Ryan Paine said, on video, that the Oath Keepers were “lucky [they’re] not getting shot in the back’ for deserting the Bundy battlefield.”


This is really to much to fathom. Exactly who comprises his audience?  Rush today, as indignant as ever said that Strerling was being rail-roaded by the “media” (as if he isn’t part of it) one the basis of one tape recording.!!!!

Talk about timing the interjection of skepticism. Implying that this poor guy is being destroyed. I mean, how to we really know it’s his voice? Hmmm?? Other than Sterling himself coping to it.  What Limbaugh was saying was that even though a murderer confesses, that confession shouldn’t be relied upon as being factual. What a dick he is.

Really, that’s what the Tea Party organizations should be called if they wanted to maintain truth in advertising.

A Washington Post analysis found that some of the top national tea party groups engaged in this year’s midterm elections have put just a tiny fraction of their money directly into boosting the candidates they’ve endorsed.

The practice is not unusual in the freewheeling world of big-money political groups, but it runs counter to the ethos of the tea party movement, which sprouted five years ago amid anger on the right over wasteful government spending. And it contrasts with the urgent appeals tea party groups have made to their base of small donors, many of whom repeatedly contribute after being promised that their money will help elect conservative politicians.

Out of the $37.5 million spent so far by the PACs of six major tea party organizations, less than $7 million has been devoted to directly helping candidates, according to the analysis, which was based on campaign finance data provided by the Sunlight Foundation.


The Republicans in Congress have failed at every turn in trying to make Benghazi a huge scandal for President Obama and Hilary Clinton. It’s not for lack of trying, though, with Darrell Issa employing the same crack investigative tools that he used in his IRS investigation debacle. When the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) issued their Benghazi report 4 months ago, it took the wind out of the Republicans sails since it was a bi-partisan, factual assessment of what actually happened and destroyed a number of wingnut conspiracy theories. Some people just don’t give up on their fantasies (see again Darrell Issa) and the “Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi” is comprised of these types of people.

The Citizens Commission on Benghazi (CCB) was put together by Accuracy in Media (AIM), a rabidly right wing group bankrolled by Richard Mellon Scaife, which purports to be a media watchdog. AIM’s biggest claim to fame is their insistence that Vince Foster was murdered, presumably by Bill and Hilary Clinton. AIM follows the Judicial Watch process of investigation, which is to submit a pile of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, then put out a press release claiming everything you say is true because you submitted FOIA requests. In this case they used Scaife’s “Communications Stream of Conspiracy Commerce” strategy identified by the Clinton White in the 1990’s:

This is how the stream works. First, well funded right wing think tanks and individuals underwrite conservative newsletters and newspapers such as the Western Journalism Center, the American Spectator and the Pittsburgh Tribune Review. Next, the stories are reprinted on the internet where they are bounced all over the world. From the internet, the stories are bounced into the mainstream media through one of two ways: 1) The story will be picked up by the British tabloids and covered as a major story, from which the American right-of-center mainstream media (i.e. the Wall Street Journal, Washington Times and New York Post) will then pick the story up; or 2) The story will be bounced directly from the internet to the right-of-center mainstream American media.

Just substitute AIM for Western Journalism Center, The Daily Mail for British tabloids, and Fox News for right-of-center American media and the strategy has been followed to the letter. Other Right wing websites have picked up the story and ran with it, including such shining examples of journalism as WND, Newsmax, PJ Media, Drudge, and FreeRepublic. Now, you have people who hate Obama touting this report as the completely true, while the State Department and SSCI reports are nothing but coverups.

AIM created a “Citizen’s Commission” to investigate Benghazi and they generated a report based entirely on public reporting and interviews with mostly anonymous sources. Their published report came to four Findings:

  1. The United States ignored Muammar Qaddafi’s attempts to surrender.
  2. The United States changed sides in the War on Terror, actively supporting Al Qaida.
  3. US military forces were in position to aid American personnel in Benghazi.
  4. Benghazi is being covered up at all levels of government.

The extremists on the right will accept this report as the truth without digging any deeper than AIM’s press release and the Daily Mail article, and that’s unfortunate. Go below the fold to see just how worthless this “report” is, except to those who only believe the worst about the US government.


This Has Got to Hurt

Posted: April 26, 2014 by Marner in Books, Current Events, Open Thread
Tags: ,

I haven’t been around much the past week because I’m ass deep in the silly season.

Casper mentioned a new book, so I thought I would tip you guys off to a hilarious  review of a review of Piketty (HT: Ballon Juice):

I apologize in advance, because I am going to talk about a piece that I have not yet read. To be clear, I do not intend to read Megan McArdle’s “Piketty’s Tax Hikes Won’t Help the Middle Class.” I’m afraid that I can’t wait to weigh in — not on the review itself, but on its topic. How much doesn’t inequality not actually not matter?


You just knew it was coming, didn’t you?

More after the jump.


Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is the face of conservatism.

For days, conservatives have been outraged that the Bureau Of Land Management actually attempted to to round up Clevin Bundy’s trespassing cattle from public land, exactly as the federal court had ordered be done. (The court has found numerous times that Clevin Bundy is a deadbeat rancher who is illegally using the public’s land to enrich his own private enterprise.)

This morning, Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic took note of conservative hypocrisy by highlighting a 2001 Associated Press study that described the systematic theft of land and property owned by black Americans.

In an 18-month investigation, The Associated Press documented a pattern in which black Americans were cheated out of their land or driven from it through intimidation, violence and even murder.

In some cases, government officials approved the land takings; in others, they took part in them. The earliest occurred before the Civil War; others are being litigated today. Some of the land taken from black families has become a country club in Virginia, oil fields in Mississippi, a major-league baseball spring training facility in Florida …

The AP—in an investigation that included interviews with more than 1,000 people and the examination of tens of thousands of public records in county courthouses and state and federal archives—documented 107 land takings in 13 Southern and border states.

In those cases alone, 406 black landowners lost more than 24,000 acres of farm and timber land plus 85 smaller properties, including stores and city lots. Today, virtually all of this property, valued at tens of millions of dollars, is owned by whites or by corporations.

As Coates says, “I’ve been laughing my way through the Cliven Bundy fiasco because, as Jamelle Bouie suggests, there may be no better example of racist privilege than the right to flout the government’s authority and then back its agents down at gunpoint. Bouie asks, hypothetically, how we’d respond if Bundy were black. Inasmuch as this is even a question, American history has already answered it.”

And yet, conservatives continue to portray themselves as the aggrieved party, not only in the Bundy case, but in American society as a whole.


The thing to do here, as Chris Hayes points out, is not to argue that Bundy should be subject to the kind of violence that black people who find themselves in dispute with the government’s agents often are. (There’s nothing for liberals to cheer about in a running gunfight over grazing fees.) The thing to do is to recognize the limits of our sympathies and try to extend them. “How about widening the aperture,” Hayes asks, “for the tyranny you see all around you?”


From one of the organizers of Burning Man:

Come celebrate TOTAL FREEDOM at BUNDYFEST, just across the road from the Cliven Bundy Ranch, in Bunkerville, Nevada! 240 bands, 24 hours a day, for a SOLID ROCKIN’ MONTH!!!!
*PENIS ERECTION CONTEST: Erect the largest penis in the open desert, win valuable prize! (tbd)

After all, those lands are free for anyone to use. Right, Mr. Bundy?

From the New York Times article:

The Boy Scouts of America, which voted last year to allow gay scouts but not openly gay scout leaders, has revoked the charter of a church-sponsored troop here for refusing to fire its adult gay scoutmaster.

The decision, which one gay rights organization said was a first since the policy change last year, essentially bars the Rainier Beach United Methodist Church and its 15 scouts from using logos, uniforms or names associated with the Boy Scouts as long as the scoutmaster and Eagle Scout Geoffrey McGrath, 49, remains in charge.

Given the concern conservatives showed towards Brendan Eich resigning his job as CEO of Mozilla, I’m sure they will waste no time leaping to the defense of Geoffrey McGrath and the Rainier Beach United Methodist Church.


Hmmm. Apparently no conservative opinion sites seem to care. I’m truly surprised. I did find an Associated Press article at, but no one felt compelled to comment. And another one on Town Hall from three weeks ago; still no comments expressing outrage that McGrath’s rights are being trampled. And we know you conservatives love Town Hall.

So then I turned to Breitbart. Ah. 52 comments. Lots of homophobic bigotry at Breitbart, but let’s sample a couple of comments that address the unfairness of it all, shall we?

The BSA are a PRIVATE organization. It is their RIGHT to refuse anyone. Let those of different moral value systems start their own organizations.

Unlike Mozilla, which apparently shouldn’t be allowed to choose its own CEO.

They are free to volunteer their time idiot. Just not with the BSA. If it bothers you, start the ?SA on your own. YOUR rights do not supersede the rights of others.

Anyone wants to start a gay version of the boy scouts and I’ll fight to defend that right! But I won’t support the GLBT lobby destroying other’s right to the same.

Take that, Eich! You are free to CEO somewhere else, idiot. YOUR rights do not supersede the rights of others. Oh, and conservatives will be sure to defend your right to start your own company for which you can name yourself CEO.