By now, it has become clear that in the months before his death, Breitbart had constructed a journalistic Doomsday Machine and programmed it for an apocalyptic episode of self-destruction. Perhaps it was convenient that Breitbart’s heart exploded when it did; as a martyr, he did not have to witness the implosion of his media empire or bear the responsibility he deserved for its rapid demise.
In the year after Breitbart’s death, his heirs and associates produced a string of grotesque episodes that have embarrassed even their own impossible-to-shame allies on the right, including:
Spreading the lie that Chuck Hagel took money from a non-existent group called “Friends of Hamas.” What began as a New York Daily News reporter’s burlesque joke-hypothetical question to a Senate staffer was recycled by Breitbart.com editor-at-large Ben Shapiro [see below] and reported as fact from “Senate sources.” From Breitbart, the reporter’s joke traveled onto the Senate floor and nearly sank Hagel’s confirmation as Obama’s new Defense Secretary. Even after the story was completely debunked and disavowed even by fellow right-wingers, Breitbart.com remains the only media outlet in the world that continues to stick by its debunked story;
In mid-March, Breitbart published a straight news story claiming that Paul Krugman had filed for bankruptcy. The story was sourced from an online news parody site, The Daily Currant;
Also in March, Breitbart’s most famous protege, video smear-artist and convicted criminal James O’Keefe, wasforced to pay a six-figure settlement to one of the victims of his heavily-edited ACORN videos, which was deceptively re-edited to give the impression that ACORN employees were willing to participate in sex trafficking. ACORN was once a powerful community activist organization working in mostly poor minority communities. O’Keefe’s video, which was heavily promoted by Breitbart, helped destroy ACORN and ruin the careers of many of its employees. Other lawsuits against Breitbart associates continue, including one filed by Shirley Sherrod, an African-American employee of the Department of Agriculture who was fired after Breitbart pushed a heavily-edited video manipulated to make Sherrod appear as if she was anti-white. O’Keefe’s work has been underwritten by everyone from billionaire libertarian Peter Thiel to the billionaire Koch brothers and the billionaireFoster Friess;
At the most recent CPAC conference in 2013, Breitbart.com’s sponsored panel bashing Muslims was considered too hateful and extremist by CPAC’s organizers and banned from the official CPAC agenda — despite the fact that Breitbart News Network is a major sponsor of CPAC.
As the Department of Health and Human Services prepares to implement the Affordable Care Act, they are hiring people to help uninsured Americans find health insurance in the state exchanges that law sets up. Would you believe this has something to do with ACORN and voter fraud? Let’s peek into the dark, festering mind of the wingnut to find out just how, starting with Breitbart.com, which declares “HHS RESURRECTS ‘ACORN’ THROUGH OBAMACARE!”
ObamaCare provides millions of dollars in grants to hire community activists and others as “navigators” to assist individuals enroll in health insurance provided by state or federal exchanges and, according to recent reports, register people to vote. In a new rule proposed Wednesday, HHS lays out numerous guidelines for these “navigators”, including paying them up to $48/hour for their work. The rule, guidelines and voter registration effort are a potential vehicle to resurrect ACORN or an ACORN-like entity.
Only days after “Friends of Hamas” went the way of ACORN and Shirley Sherrod (no correction, no retraction, and definitely no apology from Breitbart.com), Ben Shapiro was invited to appear on Megyn Kelly’s America Live on Fox “News” to discuss Bob Woodward’s comments on the sequester…as if he had some sort of gravitas:
A couple more appearances like this (I bet the next one will be on Sean Hannity’s “Great American Panel”) and the whole “Friends of Hamas” affair will be scrubbed from the memory of the American Right.
Kind of like Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind if you think about it.
According to Breitbart blogger John Nolte, Christopher J. Dorner - the fired LAPD officer who flipped out and went on a shooting rampage, and as of now is still at large - is a liberal. And Nolte, eagle eyed blogger that he is, uncovers the inconvenient truth the MSM doesn’t want you to know:
While we pray for those murdered and everyone who might be in danger, we cannot forget that the media and its allies in the Democratic Party have set a standard when it comes to reporting on the possible political motives of mass murderers. Though they generally make things up to turn the death of innocents into a talking point against the Right, it is still the left who set this precedent.
And what do you know, Chris Dorner, the former police officer suspected of being behind the murder rampage presently unfolding in Los Angeles, has apparently left behind a manifesto addressed to America that the media are already selectively reporting on to leave out the more inconvenient portions. You see, there is no political upside for the media to reveal the politics of this suspected madman.
What is being reported as Mr. Dorner’s manifesto not only endorses Hillary Clinton for president in 2016 and vigorously defends Barack Obama and the Democrats’ current gun control push; he also savages the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre while expressing all kinds of love for some of the biggest stars in the left-wing media — by name.
No Tea Partier is this suspected mass murderer, who just might be politically motivated:
Chris Matthews, Joe Scarborough, Pat Harvey, Brian Williams, Soledad Obrien, Wolf Blitzer, Meredith Viera, Tavis Smiley, and Anderson Cooper, keep up the great work and follow Cronkite’s lead. I hold many of you in the same regard as Tom Brokaw and the late Peter Jennings. …
Willie Geist, you’re a talented and charismatic journalist.
It is true that Dorner defends and praises the people mentioned above, along with President Obama, Hillary Clinton, and other Democrats, and also comes out in favor of strict gun control, and even praises what Nolte calls “safe” Republicans like George H. W. Bush, Colin Powell, Chris Christie (he’s “safe???”), and Jon Huntsman.
But nowhere in his manifesto does he even remotely suggest that there was any political motivation for this rampage other than vengeance against the LAPD.
I know that the left has been guilty of politicizing other mass shootings, but to call this a reach is to be incredibly generous.
Perhaps Jim Hoft ought to move over, as there is a new Duke of Derp in town!
Well that was quick. So much for “today’s not the day to discuss gun control”.
Never let a good crisis go to waste.
I would like to hear them explain how the Mexi drug cartels got a hold of more than 2,000 guns as part of Barry and Eric’s Fast & Furious operation. They ignore that, but exploit this. Satan is proud of his minions in the Obama Nation.
Agreed. Sadly, it’s hard to tell whether Obama’s otherwise appropriate words are sincere. A bit too much display of emotion - doesn’t look quite real. Brushing away crocodile tears so he can grab our guns?
As long as the “totalitarian freaks” are in charge of the schools, that will never happen. My retired school teacher, Obamaton brother would have crapped his pants if he had to hold a gun let alone look at one…He actually told me that I needed to be absolutely sure that an intruder was going to harm me before I shot him in defense of my family and myself… These people are crazy children. They can’t accept that people would do what they wouldn’t do. That’s where they get the ‘negotiate with terrorists’ meme and the Co-Exist! bumper stickers. Was someone in the Obama camp instrumental here? I wouldn’t be surprised if they were. Notice that there isn’t much info on him…shades of the Batman Rising shooter—the guy who didn’t look like himself and didn’t act alone. That was all hushed up too.
Gun control will lead to the next revolution which is brewing under the surface.
Obama could be heard mumbling “Yessssssss!” under his breath when he saw the headlines….Next thing out of his mouth was a pre-prepared treatise on gun control.
To bad some adult there wasn’t carrying and trained in firearms. It may have prevented some of the deaths that occurred. As it was, there was no chance at all. Just none. Evil definitely exists as demonstrated today.
Where is the Outrage from Obama for Democrats and Union Goons calling for Violence?
Democrats are on record stating that “There will be blood, there will be repercussions”
Union Members Thugs are on record calling for a Civil War in the United States of America.
Obama, Obama, Obama …. Your willingness to use every gun-related incident (including the ones you are creating) to push your fascist agenda to DISMANTLE the Constitution and DISARM the People is going to backfire. ~ I bet you worked on that ‘one tear’ show in the front of the mirror b4 taking the podium.
We see what you did with gun-running to Mexico and we now know that you are disarming our troops in the Middle East while arming others who would do them harm.
Enough is enough. We the People do not support your policies and we want our representative government back.
So a photo op of the slippery snake, wiping his crocodile tears with his middle finger, For all the world to see. Yes obama, You are becoming transparant after all.
Breitbart’s Joel Pollack asks the question on the minds of wingnuts everywhere:
He wiped away a tear. I wept with him. And then… that.
How are we meant to interpret that statement?
Must we accept Obama’s preferred response—gun control—regardless of the merits of the policy?
Is this another serious crisis the Obama administration will refuse to waste?
Does every problem have a government solution?
“That” was this statement from President Obama:
“We’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this regardless of the politics.”
Forehead, meet wall.
Since Andrew Breitbart’s sudden death on March 1, his disciples have battled over which way the site should go forward.
A pretty interesting read.
As I mentioned earlier, in my rejoinder to Andrew Sullivan, who accused me of posting on Rosh Hashanah, in violation of the Torah’s ban on blogging during holy days, I’ve been away from the Internet for a while — I’m on the road right now in Colorado, enjoying the delightful weather as well as the company of various upstanding Coloradans of all political stripes. But I’ve had a chance to catch up on various interrelated controversies, including an accusation by the “Big Journalism” site of Breitbart.com that I am a “court Jew” for President Obama, for whom, a Breitbart scribe alleges, I “bend over.” (The original headline on the post was tuchus-themed as well: “Jeffrey Goldberg — Asshole,” and though it was later changed to “Jeffrey Goldberg Undermines Israel on ‘Meet the Press;” the url remains “breitbart.com My feelings are very hurt, but I will survive.)
Here’s the Breitbart understanding of my understanding of Middle East politics:
Jeffrey Goldberg, court Jew par excellence, was on Meet the Press Sunday in order to pontificate, Thomas Friedman-style, and bash Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel. Goldberg has never made a secret of his undermining of Israel’s security. He even supports J Street, the George Soros and Arab-financed organization, participating in conversations about Israel.
First, it is axiomatic that Jews, such as Tom and yours truly, can’t pontificate. Second, this is what I told David Gregory on Meet the Press about the Netanyahu controversy — specifically, Netanyahu’s decision to make his criticism of the Obama Administration public — that made the Breitbart writer so emotional:
Well, there’s two issues. One is a legitimate issue, which is this debate over red lines. This is the debate that Obama and Netanyahu should have, a discussion, in private. And that’s legitimate for Netanyahu to raise. What’s illegitimate, and let me just put this as bluntly as I can, I’ve been watching the relationship between the U.S. and Israel for 20 years, more than 20 years, very seriously. And I’ve never seen an Israeli prime minister mismanage the relationship with the United States, with the administration, the way this prime minister has. Obama’s not blameless. The first year, the peace process was a disaster. But, you know, one person here is the senior partner, and one is the junior partner. And Netanyahu’s turned this into a story about himself and Obama.
The Goldblog in-box was soon filled with invective, from right-wingers who thought I was selling out the Jewish people (these are critics who, in addition to conflating the settlement proejct with Israel itself, also conflate the prime minister of Israel with Israel itself) and from left-wingers who thought I was wrong to suggest that Netanyahu had any right at all to ask President Obama what his “red lines” concerning the Iranian nuclear program might be.
And now, just in time to give us all a bit of respite from the depressing news of the past few days, an important author from Breitbart.com has agreed to provide some original humour and play the part of the village fool in a shakespeare-esque comedy sure to tickle our funny bones.
Here’s a bit of an Obama speech, as the historical set up for the play. It has the added bonus of being Obama’s real words from a real speech.
OBAMA: Last week an independent non-partisan organization crunched the numbers; they went through what it would mean to add a five trillion-dollar tax cut. Just to give you a sense of perspective here — our entire defense budget is a little over $500 billion per year, but it’s less than six hundred. So you’re talking about — each year — a tax cut that is the equivalence of our defense budget, for the next ten years.
What this policy center did, they just ran the numbers. If you actually wanted to pay for that, what would that mean? And they determined that Governor Romney’s plan would effectively raises taxes on middle class families with children by $2,000 — to pay for this tax cut. Not to reduce the deficit, not to invest in things that grow our economy — like education or roads or basic research. He’d ask the middle class to pay more in taxes so that he could give another $250,000 tax cut to people making more than $3 million a year.
It’s like Robin Hood in reverse — it’s Romney-hood. …
They have tried to sell us this trickle-down, tax cut fairy dust before — and guess what? It doesn’t work.
It didn’t work then and it won’t work now. It’s not a plan to create jobs, it’s not a plan to reduce our deficit, and it’s not a plan to move our economy forward.
The role of the non-partisan narrator is played by, you guessed it, me.
Breitbart.com Stumbles To Market.
As the play starts, we find the fool* talking to himself in a ragged whisper, wishing it was he who was the court jester and his humble shack a castle.
FOOL:” 1. This so-called non-partisan study was co-authored by a former member of Obama’s economic team.”
NARRATOR: Look, just because people like the authors at Breitbart.com are willing to lie and twist facts in order to vilify others to make their candidate of choice look like the better of two horrible choices to any person who shares their ideology, does not mean others will do the same thing. In fact the co-authors of the report have been as up front about the methodolgy used, and the assumptions they started with as possible. If they intended to lie by hiding their agenda in the report, they did a piss poor job of it.
We all know the staff and fans of Breitbart.com are ideologues intent on destroying all information from and about their opponents, so this bitter well poisoning is to be expected, but there have been a number of reviews of the report and the reporting on the report before and the report is not what Breitbart.com wants us to believe it is.
FOOL: “The study also assumes Romney would raise taxes on the middle class and ignores how a growing economy can increase tax revenues.”
NARRATOR: It assumes that Romney wants the tax system to be resource neutral so the deficit is not increased. Is that so hard to understand?
FOOL: “2. Obama says tax cuts don’t create economic growth, spending on roads and education and research do.
Are you going to believe your lying eyes or our lying president? “
NARRATOR: This Breitbart.com author just claimed the readers of the blog can’t normally trust their own reading ability. Good for him.
FOOL: “According to Obama, the Reagan years [1981-1989] were a flop and his trillion-dollar spending binge was an epic success.”
NARRATOR: During the Reagan years, spending on the Military (”military Keynesianism”) went up, and the deficit spiked so those years are not a good example of how lowered taxes accomplish what Breitbart.com thinks it does. Just the opposite in fact.
“***The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981 included steep increases in military spending, steep cuts in non-defense expenditures, and a large tax cut (legislated through ERTA 1981). Although the Reagan administration predicted that the combination of spending and tax cuts would reduce the federal deficit, the deficit exploded under Reagan.”
“This was partially a result of slow economic growth, which was in turn precipitated by the Federal Reserve’s moves to reduce the money supply so as to curb inflation. On the whole, however, the ballooning federal deficit was caused by declines in tax revenue. As a result of the tax cuts, revenues for the federal government dropped $200 billion by 1986 and contributed to consecutive budget deficits and a massive increase in the national during the Reagan and George H.W. Bush presidencies.”
National Dept by President
“During his presidential campaign Ronald Reagan proposed three fiscal policies: 1) increased defense spending; 2) cuts in non-defense appropriations; and 3) tax cuts.”
NARRATOR: Obama did not claim the TARP was an epic success, but the Breitbart.com fans view things in stark contrasts, so they only understand gross failure and epic success. However, that is a gross failure to understand the effects of TARP on their part, not a failure of TARP.
FOOL: “3. Robin Hood didn’t rob from wealthy private citizens to give to the poor. Robin Hood robbed from the Obama’s and Pelosi’s and the Harry Reid’s of his time — he robbed from overbearing, power-hungry big government bureaucrats who over-taxed private citizens and business owners to feather their own nests and pay off Solyndra and unions their cronies.
Robin Hood gave the people back money stolen from them by corrupt, greedy, selfish, statist government officials.”
NARRATOR: Actually, though there are several differernt stories about Robin and the ballads about the character have changed dramatically through the centuries the modern myths of Robin have him as a highwayman stopping and robbing anyone with money passing through Robin’s portion of the forest. His band of drunkards and thieves did not restrict their thievery to the nobility and their lackies, but quite egalitarianly stole from private businessmen as well.
It looks like the fool gets his information about Robin Hood from Disney cartoons.
FOOL: “Obama is no Robin Hood, he’s the Sheriff of Nottingham.
By the way, where are our media fact-checkers on all of this? Oh, yeah, too busy calling Romney a liar for saying a president who didn’t go to Israel didn’t go to Israel.
NARRATOR: What exactly are the fact checkers supposed to be checking, the use of Robin Hood as an analogy? Surely they have more important things to do than worry about something so incredibly trivial.
I hope you’ve enjoyed our little play about the back and forth of Breitbartian politics.