It’s rare to see a better encapsulation of the right wing’s problem with modern life than the latest cover of the National Review, as Rich Lowry apparently feels it necessary to defend the legacy of President Abraham Lincoln against the deranged kooks who have taken over his own movement.
Just a few months ago, the National Review was forced to fire or distance themselves from not one, but two overt white nationalists who had been writing for the publication for years.
So it’s not really surprising to find editor Robert VerBruggen mounting a vociferous defense of Jason Richwine and “scientific racism” research; it’s what they do. (Notice that VerBruggen never mentions Richwine’s articles for the white nationalist website AlternativeRight.com.)
As you no doubt have already heard, on Friday the Heritage Foundation accepted the resignation of one Jason Richwine, who in 2009 had completed a Harvard dissertation in which he probed the nexus between immigration and IQ.
The decision revealed a shocking unwillingness on the part of Heritage to stand up to bullying and protect the academic freedom of its researchers. Perhaps the only good thing to emerge from all this has been the wide-scale distribution of the dissertation itself, a worthy if highly debatable document. It’s a pity that none of Richwine’s detractors seem to have seriously engaged the paper, because an actual discussion of the ideas therein would be fruitful.
VerBruggen is 100% on board with Richwine’s contention that Latinos are not as smart as white people — and he explicitly wants to use this research to drive US immigration policies:
It may be unseemly to ask what might happen with Hispanic IQ as Hispanics move from immigration to assimilation. But given the above facts, and given the reality of large-scale Hispanic immigration to the U.S., there is no denying that the answer is relevant to the future of this country.
Republicans have no trouble believing in the “science” of white racial superiority, and want to use it to disenfranchise people they consider less intelligent than themselves…
But climate change? That’s a hoax.
At the National Review today, we find a brainless fluff piece about one of the most deranged Republicans in Congress: Can Paul Broun Win?
Author Betsy Woodruff admires Paul Broun’s “quirkiness and candor,” and his penchant for saying “colorful” things like this:
- “The Constitution I uphold and defend is the one I carry in my pocket all the time, the U.S. Constitution. I don’t know what Constitution that other members of Congress uphold, but it’s not this one. I think the only Constitution that Barack Obama upholds is the Soviet constitution, not this one.”
- “All that stuff I was taught about evolution, embryology, the Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of Hell. And it’s lies to try to keep me and all the folks who were taught that from understanding that they need a savior.”
- “I don’t believe that the Earth’s but about 9,000 years old. I believe it was created in six days as we know them. That’s what the Bible says.”
- “I was the first member of Congress to call [President Obama] a socialist who embraces Marxist-Leninist policies like government control of health care and redistribution of wealth.”
That wacky, irrepressible caveman has a direct line to the Almighty, of course, and he knows that the Man Upstairs has called on him to be a Congressman.
He speaks for the religious Right. In the South, religion and politics have always been separated by only the thinnest of walls, and in Broun’s case, the line between religious and political fervor is particularly slim. “He really believes that the Lord wanted him to be a congressman,” says a source close to Broun.
But these aren’t his only lovable qualities! Broun also likes to kill animals, lots of them.
Broun remains an avid hunter. When I stopped by his Hill office, the first thing I noticed was that hunting trophies covered almost every wall. When he had to move offices a few months ago, the movers made quite a scene parading the heads of wild animals through the halls of the Rayburn House Office Building.
Broun doesn’t hunt just for the trophies. “If I shoot it, I’m gonna eat it,” he says. His warthog was particularly toothsome. “It’s actually pork,” he explains. “I had roast warthog, it was cooked in a French style. I’m a French cook myself, and I like to cook things with some fancy sauces and stuff that I’ll make at home. That was excellent.”
The only thing he didn’t especially care for was the lion. “The lion wasn’t particularly tasty,” he says. “It was kind of chewy, but I ate it too.”
The very model of a modern day Republican!
This is a good one. Always searching for some kind of way to reverse the “War on Women” meme (because they know it’s so deadly accurate), the National Review tries to make something out of Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus’s statement that Sarah Palin has “a tart approach.”
VIDEO: War on women - Washington Post columnist dismisses Palin’s ‘tart approach’ - bit.ly/ZEsCNE
— National Review (@NRO) March 18, 2013
Of course, it couldn’t be more obvious that Marcus was using the word like this:
tart 3 |tärt|
sharp or acid in taste: a tart apple.
• (of a remark or tone of voice) cutting, bitter, or sarcastic: I bit back a tart reply.
But with Sarah Palin’s boob jokes and double entendres, I guess I see why the National Review’s Andrew Johnson thought she meant this (even though it’s a noun, not an adjective):
tart 2 |tärt|
noun (informal, derogatory)
a prostitute or a promiscuous woman.
The National Review’s Jillian Kay Melchior is ecstatic to find a black man shining shoes at the convention center where CPAC is being held.
With the amazingly tone-deaf title: Putting the Shine on CPAC.
CPAC participants enjoyed a particularly rare service at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center: The simple shoe shine.
And yes, they really did use this photo to illustrate the article:
You know that Republican “rebranding” meme they’ve been trying to push since they lost the election? In two days, CPAC has pretty much killed that meme dead.
When Breitbart.com’s Ben Shapiro posted his now-infamous fake story about Chuck Hagel and “Friends of Hamas,” it’s noteworthy that the entire right wing media machine immediately jumped on the story and spread it far and wide. It’s difficult to find a right wing website that didn’t run the story; this is how they roll, with nearly instant unison parroting of stories that advance the agenda, whether obviously fake or not.
Today National Review editor Rich Lowry actually posted a correction — which is more than the majority of conservative sites will do: ‘Friends of Hamas’ - by Rich Lowry.
A week or so ago, Capitol Hill was swirling with rumors that Hagel might have been associated with a group called Friends of Hamas. These rumors were mentioned in this space (albeit conditionally and with grains of salt). It turns out that the group doesn’t exist and the rumor was based on a hypothetical question that then spread in a classic Washington game of telephone, as reported here.
This might seem like semi-responsible journalism, but watch: the next time one of these fake outrages floats by, they’ll jump aboard as if this never happened.
Since Lowry said in his post that the National Review “mentioned” the rumors “conditionally and with grains of salt,” let’s take a look at the words that actually appeared on their site. Call it “fact-checking,” if you will.
First, from Andrew McCarthy: Is Hagel Toast? - by Andrew C. McCarthy - the Corner - National Review Online
As John notes, Ben Shapiro has reported at the Breitbart site Big Peace that one of Hagel’s funding sources is a group purportedly called “Friends of Hamas.” That might make someone a good fit for president of Egypt, prime minister of Turkey, or any number of advisory posts on the White House staff. But given that being a “friend of Hamas” — at least the kind of friend who provides material support to that terrorist organization — is a crime in the United States, it may not be quite what the Senate is looking for in a secretary of defense.
How is that “conditional?” Is the word “purportedly” supposed to give them an out, even though the rest of the paragraph quite clearly treats it as a fact?
Rumors abound on Capitol Hill that a full disclosure of Hagel’s professional ties would reveal financial relationships with a number of “unsavory” groups, including one purportedly called “Friends of Hamas.” The GOP aide said it was “noteworthy” that the White House has yet to deny the association. “Maybe it’s not true, but why not provide a list of groups he spoke to and remove all doubt?” the aide said.
There’s that “purportedly” again, followed by dark insinuations that the White House hasn’t denied the accusation.
Pretty obviously, the National Review’s writers pushed this story as factual, and they did much more than simply “mention” it — and Lowry’s attempt to picture it as “conditional” is just as ridiculous as the fake story itself.
The arguments of pro-gun fanatics are getting more and more absurd.
In the National Review, David French isn’t satisfied with just citing the Constitution or the founding fathers any more; he’s making the ultimate appeal to authority: The Biblical and Natural Right of Self-Defense.
His argument is that God decreed “man” should be armed to the teeth with high-powered semi-automatic weapons, because Bible. Hey, are you gonna argue with God? Get thee to a gun store, sinner!
I’m always amazed at how many wingnut writers pretend to have a direct line to the Almighty. It’s one of the biggest snow jobs conservative pundits pull on their followers.