Posts Tagged ‘Joseph Farah’

It’s been awhile since I wrote about this, but World Net Daily’s Joseph Farah’s argument with RightWingWatch prompted me to revisit it, even though we’re still two years away from the Obamapocalypse.

First, there was on Thursday a column published by Joseph Farah, “Will Obama Leave Office in 2017?” It got 715 comments (so far). This was followed up on Friday by a published e-mail from a Frances Haase: “How Obama Could Stay in Office in 2017.” Just speculating about civil unrest and martial law and suspension of elections. It got one comment.

Then, in response later that day, Miranda Blue published on RightWingWatch: “Joseph Farah Is ‘Just Asking’: Will Obama Actually Leave Office in January 2017?” RWW noted this:

“[W]hy do we assume Obama will step aside willingly from the presidency following an election in 2016?” Farah asks in a column today. “I’m not saying he won’t. I’m just asking why.”

It’s a pathetic phrase that is often used by people who want to say something they know will be controversial and, for some reason or another (since Farah has said far more controversial things and been forthright about it), they don’t want it coming back on them, or they want an excuse to say, “Hey! I didn’t actually say that, I was just asking the question!”

Richard Hoagland does this a lot when claiming that every asteroid and comet is a space ship.

Despite RWW and WND going head-to-head for years, apparently it rubbed Joseph Farah the wrong way. He actually responded in a column on Sunday: “Who Would Oppose Obama 3rd Term?” Who indeed? He starts out his column as such:

In this space on Thursday, I raised a question that Americans had only been whispering about among trusted friends: Will Barack Obama leave office in 2017?”

People for the American Way’s “Right Wing Watch” didn’t like it.

I trust that means the group will use all of its influence and legal firepower to oppose any attempt by Obama to subvert the law – though there was no hint of that in its response.

Rush Limbaugh responded to the question Friday when a caller raised the possibility Obama might ignore the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution as he has ignored so many other laws since taking office.

[…] Limbaugh speculated that Obama might actually consider the possibility of a third term given the Democratic Party’s weak field of potential presidential candidates for 2016. He imagined Obama going on television and making a case to the American people that he is in the best position to stop a Republican from capturing the White House – “not after eight courageous years of transforming America!”

So, “Not only am I ‘just askin’,’ but so is Papa Rush!”

RightWingWatch responded today with a post by Peter Montgomery: “Birther Joseph Farah Wants PFAW Help To Block Third Obama Term. Let’s Make A Deal.” Here’s his proposal:

Farah was apparently bothered that Miranda’s RWW post did not include a pledge that People For the American Way would “use all of its influence and legal firepower” to stop Obama from chucking the Constitution in a White House power-grab. Of course we don’t take the possibility seriously, but since Farah seems to, let’s offer him a proposition: If President Obama refuses to allow a constitutional transfer of power to his successor, we will join you at the barricades. If the American republic miraculously survives, you will stop polluting the public discourse with toxic nonsense. Deal?

I think that’s fair.

I was anticipating this day, though because I didn’t know when the House re-elects its speakers, I wasn’t sure when it would come. Basically, for the last week or two, World Net Daily has published innumerable (well, over a dozen, I just choose not to enumerate and link to them) articles explaining why there is absolutely positively NO WAY that John Boehner would win re-election for Speaker of the House.

Why? Because he is soft on immigration, won’t defund “Obamacare,” won’t spank Obama over Cuba, and various other things. He’s a RINO (Republican in Name Only), after all. And there were two über-right-wing loonies running against him.

Today, he did, by a landslide. All but 25 Republicans voted for him. 216 of the 408 votes cast. The only possible spin that the outlets are putting on this is that he didn’t win a majority of the House — which is true, for there are 435 House seats, but it’s the number of votes that count, not number of possible votes.

Garth Kant got the probably unenviable task of writing the story: “House GOP Finally Decides Boehner’s Fate.”

And, I take back what I wrote two paragraphs ago, for Garth found another way to spin this: “But the drive to oust the speaker gained well more support than the 12-to-20 opposition votes most political observers expected. It was nearly an historic effort: The election for House Speaker hasn’t been forced to a second ballot since 1923.”

The reason why I smirked with glee when I saw this story (Despite my dislike of Boehner), was that, as I said, WND has written well over a dozen articles in the last few days to “Dumb Boehner.” In fact, it’s WND’s founder and CEO, Joseph Farah, who either initiated or trumpeted a letter-writing campaign to Capital Hill to dump Boehner, and they were bragging just yesterday that over 560,000 letters had been written. So, that’s 550,000 by Farah, and another 10k by some other people.

Garth’s article is long. I skimmed it. It is spent whining. And listing those Loyal to the Cause, including gathering quotes from those who voted against John Boehner — though most of these were from public statements rather than those congressfolks actually responding to requests for comment from WND.

As of this writing, which is only 8 hours after the article was posted, 910 comments have been left on the WND article. I think I’ll end with a lovely, perfectly sane and sensible rant by “sthurmon” who left the second-highest rated comment:

Oh….what? You actually thought you controlled anything? Think again. We have no say in the matter. If we did, Obama would have been in jail already for the fraud, the war crimes, the violations of The Constitution. The Globalist Mafia/Central Banker/Eugenicists will, until YOU stop them, do what they want. They decide which stooge fronts for them, they decide your health or should I say the lack of it by Fluoride in the water, G.M.O. in the food, Thimerisol (metabolizes into Mercury in your body) in the vaccines, and the withholding of medical care that COULD have extended your life while the likes of Kissinger, Bushes, Cheney, Clintons, Obamas, et. al. get the life extending technologies denied to you. It’s In Your Face now ….they really don’t care what you think anymore….do they?

Edited to Add (January 20, 2015): WND is still at it, despite failing and no chance of a recount unless something HUGE happens. Tonight, they posted, “Replace-Boehner letter campaign surges past 570,000.”

If you follow any far-right websites, church-state separation sites, or probably LGBT sites, you have seen this story. It has been going on now for over two weeks, and it seems as though WND is finally down to only posting on this once a day instead of several. So, first the (non-exhaustive) links:

If you were to focus on the WND headlines and have the vaguest idea of what this is about, you would conclude the following: (1) The mayor of Houston is a lesbian (a really “big” lesbian, based on the repeat of this adjective in the headlines), (2) she has demanded that area pastors turn in all copies of their sermons, (3) in clear violation of church-state separation, and (4) that pastors are protesting.

So, what’s really going on?

The story started many months ago, when the mayor of Houston, Annise Parker (who does happen to be a lesbian), championed an anti-discrimination ordinance (HERO: Houston Equal Rights Ordinance) that protects against discrimination based on sexual orientation. Texas is pretty conservative, so it was opposed, including to the next ballot. But, the petitioners failed to get enough signatures to get it on the ballot for repeal. Darn.

The petitioners are claiming that the City Attorney, David Feldman, wrongly decided they hadn’t gathered enough valid signatures to qualify for the ballot, and they will have their day in court in January 2015.

That’s the first part. The second part of this is to remember that America has this thing called “separation of church and state.” I know that many conservatives don’t like this, and don’t think it applies to the church affecting the state – just vice versa – but case law would seem to go against that. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a rule that enforces this church-state separation, in that the IRS won’t tax a church if it stays out of state business. Put more bluntly and specifically, the 1954 Johnson Amendment bans tax-exempt 501(C) organizations from intervening in political campaigns.

Officials in the city of Houston had a feeling that this was not followed by local pastors, that the local pastors advocated for the repeal of the measure. Which would put it at odds with church-state separation; or, at the very least, it would put them at odds with their tax-exempt status.

And so, city attorneys took the rare measure of subpoenaing, as part of discovery because of the suit the petitioners filed against the city (as in, they brought this on themselves), “all speeches, presentations, or sermons related to HERO, the Petition, Mayor Annise Parker, homosexuality, or gender identity prepared by, delivered by, revised by, or approved by you or in your possession.” They “were issued to several high-profile pastors and religious leaders who have been vocal in opposing the ordinance. The Alliance Defending Freedom has filed a motion on behalf of the pastors seeking to quash the subpoenas.” (source)

Perhaps most importantly, Mayor Parker did not even know about – let alone initiate – the subpoenas. In fact, she criticized the city attorneys after she found out about it. Somehow WND seems to have failed to notice this very salient point.

At this point, we can reject the second conclusion from the WND headlines. And if it wasn’t obvious, the first one is a non sequitur because someone’s sexual orientation has nothing to do with any of this in terms of its legality. Though, Pat Robertson would beg to differ.

The third point, the violation of church-state separation, is a more interesting question. Before reading anyone else’s commentary on it, I admit that this was an eye-raiser for me because it seems like it’s treading on thin ice. But the more I thought about it, the more I thought that this was okay. The state isn’t telling the church what to do. It isn’t asking for anything that’s private. It’s asking for something that anyone who went to the sermons – which are open to anyone – could have learned.

That said, people with far more legal expertise than I do think that while this isn’t necessarily unconstitutional, it is over-reach: “[The legality] presupposes that the information in the subpoenaed sermons really is substantially relevant to a case or an investigation. I don’t quite see how “all speeches, presentations, or sermons related to HERO, the Petition, Mayor Annise Parker, homosexuality, or gender identity prepared by, delivered by, revised by, or approved by you or in your possession” would be relevant to the litigation about the validity of the referendum petitions.” (source)

And, since the severe backlash, including a letter from the Texas Attorney General, the city attorneys have backed down.

Meanwhile, on the right, there’s some hypocrisy going on. The American Family Association (AFA), a far-right Christian group who is likewise outraged over this, has long held that the First Amendment only applies to forbidding Congress from interfering with the church (and only the Christian churches), nothing more. Their entire case, in this case, rests on a local Mayor (which is inaccurate – it’s the city attorneys). But, AFA’s spokesmouth has stated this:

First, the amendment applies only to Congress. “Congress shall make no law…” No other entity is restrained by the First Amendment. Since the amendment applies only to Congress, it is legally, historically and constitutionally impossible for a state, a county commission, a city council, a school board, a school principal, a school teacher or a student to violate the First Amendment. This is for one simple reason: none of them is Congress. Violating the First Amendment is something only Congress can do.


This has also given many people and groups the opportunity for (un-)righteous indignation. Such as Ted Cruz, who agrees with fear-mongers that pastors may soon be “hauled off to jail for a hate crime” for just preaching what they want to preach. Others, like Glen Beck, say that this is the most dangerous thing they have ever seen.

Overall, WND posted a lot about this. Most of it came from their chief in anti-gay writing, Bob Unruh, though it also made two of founder and CEO Joseph Farah’s columns. Not to mention one by Chuck Norris and the main tabloid rumor reporter, Joe Kovacs. It has spawned very roughly 4700 comments on WND across the posts that I clicked on and linked to above.

Meanwhile, it gave the über-right a rallying cry of another (made-up) example of (false) Christian Persecution. Because laws are made for everyone else, and hyperbole is okay in an election year.

That in mind, I don’t expect to write about this anymore, baring a major new development.

Quite awhile ago, I said that the legal march in the US towards equality and non-discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation is continuing, perhaps accelerating, and fervently opposed by the über-conservatives which World Net Daily embodies. And because of that, I was getting somewhat annoyed with the broken-record that I was reporting on here. So this is just a summary of some of the news I flagged over the last two weeks (yay TAM break!).

First off, on July 6, we had Scott Lively write, “‘Gay’ Agenda? What ‘Gay’ Agenda?” Which under normal circumstances I would think is a skeptical look at the vast conspiracy thinking that holds that a massive number of gays and their supporters are trying to take over the world. But this is Scott Lively writing on WND:

Mentioning the “gay” agenda in the presence of an LGBT activist or any other cultural Marxist is like pulling the string on a Sheriff Woody doll. You hear precisely the same recording each time: “What gay agenda? There is no gay agenda.”

But, of course, the audacious lie that the now-global LGBT political movement has “no agenda” is as transparent as the emperor’s new clothes. Indeed, their agenda is not only undeniable, it has unfortunately become unavoidable.

The rest of the post is an attempt to support his concluding paragraph, which I summarized in one sentence above:

In summary, the “gay” agenda is to eliminate the existing Judeo-Christian model of civilization, grounded in marriage-based procreative sexuality, to make way for an irrational and impossible cultural Marxist model which imagines family-less, unlimited “sexual freedom” (anarchy), while somehow preserving orderliness in every other aspect of human society. It reflects an insane and Satanic delusion that breeds chaos, and can only be stopped by unceasing reaffirmation of biblical values and the natural family by the rest of us.

It’s difficult to try to make light, humorize, or parody this kind of thing because it is its own parody. “Insane and Satanic delusion”? Really?

Moving on, in the totally not-gay business of baking cakes and decorating them with colorful icing, Bob Unruh on July 7 informed us that Another Baker Ordered to Endorse Homosexuality.” In Northern Ireland. Grand! But there’s hope in the US, because Bob reported on July 17 that in Colorado, “Baker Appeals Government Re-Education Order.”

A Lakewood, Colorado, bakery owner has appealed to the Colorado Court of Appeals an order from the state’s Civil Rights Commission that he take his employees through a mandatory re-education process because of his religious objections to promoting same-sex marriage, which the state constitution does not recognize.

The Alliance Defending Freedom, who represents Masterpiece Cakeshop artist Jack Phillips, says the order by state bureaucrats requires Phillips to “re-educate” his employees so that they “endorse all views.” Phillips also must file quarterly reports for two years proving that the “re-education” has been implemented.

The title is a clear allusion to Communism and totalitarian societies.

Meanwhile, Selena Owens declared on July 8, “Marriage: Not an Experiment!” She’s correct, it’s not. It’s a social and religious contract that has been a tradition only in its coarsest of ideas for thousands of years, but the specifics have varied not only by society and country, but by almost decade after decade. It was when governments got involved and granted literally hundreds (and in the US, over 1000) legal rights to people who are married (such as hospital visitation, joint tax filing, can’t be compelled to testify against spouse, etc.) that those legal protections were wanted by same-sex couples who love each other just as much as opposite-sex couples who have >50% divorce rate in the US. (And let’s not forget Britney Spears’ 54-hour “just for fun” totally-not-an-experiment marriage from a decade ago.)

But no, totally not an experiment, totally set in stone and totally unchanging. But I digress, since her column is actually about a stupid new reality TV show:

“Married at First Sight” is a new “social experiment” show from A&E’s new FYI network, (based on a Danish version of the show) that pairs three couples who agree to marry upon their first initial meeting. That’s right; the very first date for these couples will be when they actually walk down the aisle to join together in matrimony. The show “will follow the classic lifestyle stories of newlyweds – from the honeymoon to early nesting to other relatable events of married life. After several weeks together, the couple must make a decision: Do they remain together or do they separate?”

But since I already wrote my rant, I’ll leave it in.

In the continued march towards state recognition of marriage equality, on July 9, “Judge Tosses Colorado ‘Gay’-Marriage Ban,” and on July 18, “Federal Court Rules for ‘Gay’ Marriage in Oklahoma.” But just like last time when there was a flurry of judicial rulings that pointed out the prohibited discriminatory nature of not letting same-sex couples wed, Bob Unruh charged in on July 19 to remind people, “Activist Judges Push ‘Gay Marriage.'”

The reason I’m not talking about the comments on these, like the 624 (so far) on Bob’s story, is that they are exactly what you would expect from WND, complaining about judicial activists or crying about Jesus being banned.

Speaking about Jesus being banned, Joseph Farah used his July 11 column to remind us, “Christians Are Not Hostile to ‘Gays.'” Nope, and the very fact you put scare-quotes around “gay” just proves how loving you are. (Remember: Farah is the founder and CEO of WND.) Farah takes the common BS reminder that Christians hate the sin, not the sinner:

The job of evangelicals is to evangelize.

You don’t evangelize non-sinners. The act of evangelizing is to confront sinners with their fallen state – their shortcomings, their appointment with death. It is that act that brings sinners to salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus. That’s why He died on the cross – to give sinners a chance for eternal life. He died for them, us, you and me. And He conquered death for them through this sacrificial act when He rose from the dead.

Neither Jesus nor any true evangelical would ever be “hostile” to sinners. In fact, it is an act of love to share the gospel with them. But sharing the gospel means confronting the reality of sin, not excusing it, condoning it, glorifying it or participating in it.

The problem with this is found in the Bible itself, in Matthew 7:16: “By their fruit you will recognize them.” (NIV) So you can preach whatever “love” you want, but when your actions are hostile, violent, and denying of basic human equality, they belie your tender words. But of course, Christians think that it’s them who are under attack: “Left Moves to Outlaw Christianity,” by Matt Barber, also on July 11.

But The Gay is permeating society, with beloved comic character Archie from the eponymous comic series sacrificing himself: “‘Archie’ Dies Saving ‘Gay’ Friend.” Sigh.

And while we’re talking about WND devolving into a tabloid, also on the LGBT “news” track is a story form July 15 by Joe Kovacs, who wrote “Ellen’s Wife ‘Secretly Filmed Abuse to Expose Her.'” And so far as I can tell, this is one source from one celebrity rumor site with no substantiation and no public confirmation by anyone. But as I have pointed out many times on this blog, Joe Kovacs, despite being “an award-winning journalist and, since 1999, executive news editor of WND,” tends to report rumors that are completely unsubstantiated that would make even most bloggers blush at trying to report as genuine.

Also on July 15, it was announced that the town of Salem, MA, is terminating (really, just not renewing) its contract with Gordon College because Gordon College discriminates against LGBT people (and it’s allowed because it’s private, and it does it because it’s Christian; don’t’cha feel the love?). In particular:

That changed last week when the president of the small Christian college on the North Shore, D. Michael Lindsay, joined a group of 14 religious leaders in asking President Obama for an exemption from a planned executive order banning discrimination in hiring on the basis of sexual orientation. Surprisingly, such discrimination is not explicitly banned now.

The group sent the president a letter in which they tried to frame their request for an exemption as a matter of religious freedom. They claimed that the proposed ban would “come at an unreasonable cost to the common good, national unity and religious freedom.”

So, what actually happened was: “Mayor Kim Driscoll sent a letter to President Lindsay this morning notifying him and his Board of Trustees of the City’s termination of their management contract of Old Town Hall due to the institution’s non-compliance with the City of Salem’s fully LGBT-inclusive Non-Discrimination Ordinance.”

What’s great about this – besides the obvious – is that Glen Beck decided to tell his massive audience about it, and the Salem Mayor’s office got a lot of angry phone calls. Why is that great? Because “Mayor Kimberly Driscoll pledged to donate five dollars to an LGBT youth charity for every angry phone call her office gets from conservatives bent on harassing city employees over the decision.” Ha!

But, on July 17, WND decided to try to remind people that they are being Oppressed by a tiny portion of society: “‘Gay’ Population Smaller than Thought.” This reports on a recently released poll:

Based on 2013 data collected by the government in The National Health Interview Survey, 1.6 percent of adults identify as gay or lesbian and 0.7 percent identify as bisexual. The numbers were lower than earlier approximations, which placed gay and lesbians at closer to 3 percent of the population. More than 96 percent identified as straight, and 1.1 percent did not provide an answer or said they were “something else,” or “I don’t know the answer.”

Personally, I think this under-estimates the population. That’s because there are many people who say they are straight but still “just have sex” with people of the same gender. I have a cousin who worked with an HIV clinic in outreach to that population of “men who have sex with men” but don’t consider themselves “gay.” Similarly, this was a survey conducted by the government. For a group that is actively marginalized and discriminated against, the idea that they are going to be 100% honest and tell the government if they’re gay is ridiculous. This may have been attempted to be corrected for (I haven’t read the analysis methods in detail), but it’s definitely something that must be considered.

For those reasons, at best, I would say this sets a minimum on the population. But let’s say that ~2-3% is accurate. So what? It’s okay to discriminate against 2-3% of the population but not 5%? Or 10%? Where’s the cut-off? Anything under 77% because it’s 77% that’s Christian? FYI, at that same link, only 1.7% of the population of the US is Jewish. Gays outnumber Jews. Hmmmmm…

Finally, today, Monday July 21, we finally have President Obama accomplishing via Executive Order what ENDA has been trying to do for decades but failing to get through Congress: A ban on LGBT discrimination in the federal workforce. As in, any government agency, and anyone who contracts with the government for that particular project, canNOT discriminate based on sexual orientation. AND, he did not include any exception for religion (which would have made it a toothless EO).

WND reported on this in a snippet from NBC News (“Obama Signs Ban on LGBT Discrimination”). People who are less familiar with how the US government works (such as those on WND) may wonder how he can do this. It’s because the Executive branch of government is the one that implements and enforces the laws. While the Legislative makes the laws, it’s the Executive who, well, executes them. While Congress designates what receives funding, the office of the President is the one who distributes them. And unless there is a law against it, he can choose how to do that within the scope of what Congress said. And since even the current Congress wouldn’t be stupid enough to explicitly say that LGBT persons must be discriminated against in the workplace, then Obama can emphasize the opposite.

It also has a huge amount of precedence. For example, this EO is just an amendment: “In the 1960s, President Lyndon Johnson signed an order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating “against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.” Obama’s executive order added sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of protected categories.”

Or, in a completely different example, while Congress approves money for federal medical research, the Executive works within that to appropriate funds. And in 2001, President G.W. Bush issued an EO stating that NO federal money could be used for stem cell research other than already-existing lines.

So, this bit of good news – that is fully within the Executive branch’s power, is what I’ll wrap this particular update post up with.


I’m going to take his word for what happened — I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt, unlike many people on some of the websites I read. The story was apparently first reported on the Southern Poverty Law Center’s (SPLC) “Hatewatch” blog: “Birther Leader Joseph Farah Caught with Loaded Gun at Dulles TSA Checkpoint, Faces Weapon Charge.”

Several hours later in the day, today (June 24), Farah himself wrote a piece for his WND website entitled, “A Column I Never Wanted to Write.”

And I believe him. However, being in the position he is in, as a very public person, a person who has scorned TSA, and a person who knows that something like this would be immense fodder for his enemies (proposed headlines by commenters on some blogs I read included, “BREAKING: TSA Stops Right-Wing Extremist from Bringing Gun Onto Plane”), he should be extra-extra-extra-careful.

And in his blog, he admits he royally effed up:

I did something stupid Sunday morning, resulting in being charged with a crime for the first time in my adult life.

There is no excuse for my mistake. …

What I did was dumber than dumb.

And if he had stopped there, I would have been happy. Unfortunately, those first two paragraphs represent the start of the column, and the last one is taken from the middle of the last paragraph of his column. The entire rest of the column is dedicated to him looking for sympathy by playing the conspiracy-to-kill him angle. And I don’t not think he’s received death threats. Just like any other high-profile political writer. And I acknowledge his second Amendment right to have a gun, and abide by the laws of the states where he has permits to carry it.

But he had a loaded handgun in a bag, forgot about it, and put it through airport security.

And the highest-ranked comments on his column – right now there are 165 comments – blames other people and not him. The highest-rated is by “John Cherish” saying that the SPLC is a “carpetbagger institution.”

The second-highest is by “Incredulous_one” who wrote, “Is breaking an unconstitutional law really a crime?” Apparently thinking that restrictions on guns – like none in airports – is unconstitutional and therefore no one has to follow it. I’d like to see what “Incredulous_one” would write if it was a random person of Islamic faith who accidentally brought a loaded handgun through airport security.

The fifth-highest is by “smoki67” who points out that a handgun in a bag is useless because you can’t find it in time to do anything. Gotta have it on your person!

Sigh. Anyway, Farah was briefly detained, photographed, and issued a summons to appear. I doubt this story will get much play beyond this, but I’ll update if it does.

This should be a lesson to conservatives: Most old white men with strong anti-government sentiments who don’t have media savvy are not good to hang your hat on. Cliven Bundy seemed to have it all: He had a ranch, just mindin’ his own business, and the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) wanted to fine him several $million. Why? Because he let his cattle graze on public lands.

And, marshals went in to try to enforce the order, and Cliven Bundy had a militia waiting. Or something like that.

He became a conservative darling practically overnight, a case study of apparent federal government over-reach upon the most sacred thing a man can have: his land. Tea Partier after Tea Partier, including media figures, FOX “news,” Congressmen and Senators, all fawned over him. And then he opened his mouth.

Adam Nagourney of the New York Times had him on tape stating:

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”

Yeah, so blacks were better off as slaves because now they’re all on welfare. Turns out the old conservative white man is a racist. Probably not the best thing to say when you’re surrounded by media, either.

Politicians deserted him, and the media lit up. But his militia is still there. An African-American who was his (former?) bodyguard said that he would still take a bullet for him. And World Net Daily went all out attacking his detractors:

The April 25 poll, now with 543 voting, shows only 3 voters (<1%) said that his comments were racist, 8 said it was hard to say because Americans are hyper-sensitive to the issue, 23 said that they don't care because the feds are overreaching, and all the rest (509, or 93.7%) said that they were not racist. I would hazard to guess that the majority of those voting – since you have to be registered with WND, are the stereotypical ultra-conservative … old white male.

Getting into what all the WND folks wrote is beyond the scope of this post, and I honestly don't really care anymore. It's just post-hoc rationalization and digging themselves even deeper. Bundy's remarks are stereotyped, offensive, and wrong.

On March 25, 2014, Walter Williams devoted his WND column to “The Left’s Bizarre Arguments.” He began with this reductio ad absurdum fallacy:

Some statements and arguments are so asinine, you’d have to be an academic or a leftist to take them seriously.

Take the accusation that Republicans and conservatives are conducting a war on women. Does that mean they’re waging war on their daughters, wives, mothers and other female members of their families? If so, do they abide by the Geneva Conventions’ bans on torture, or do they engage in enhanced interrogation and intimidation methods, such as waterboarding, with female family members? You might say that leftists don’t mean actual war. Then why do they say it?

Hmm. Ever heard of the persecution complex of the War on Christianity in America, It’s not an actual war, with guns ‘n’ stuff where we abide by the Geneva Convention, so why do you call it a War on Christianity? (In fact, just a few days later, on March 27, Joseph Farah published his own column entitled, “The Answer to Obama’s War on Christianity.” Hmmmmmmm…)

But more to the point, he claims that conservatives are not waging a war – a metaphorical war – on women. That’s interesting. Just yesterday I read this over at The Friendly Atheist blog, “Fundamentalist Christian Pastor on Women’s Roles: ‘No, My Wife Does Not Have Equal Rights.’”

I would like a conservative (or anyone) to tell me who denying women equal rights is not a “war” against women. No, it’s not fought in the trenches, but rather in the torture chambers of the church, home, or elsewhere that women are told they can’t do something that men can do because, well, they don’t have a penis. What would you call that, if not a war on women?

Surprise surprise, I know. You’re shock-ed (pronounced “SHOCK-ed” — two syllables). Joseph Farah published a column on March 13, 2014, that had a rant underneath a non sequitur of a title: “Meet Obama’s Favorite Astrophysicist.” The article actually has nothing to do with President Obama, but it, instead, is all about how Farah thinks that the Cosmos re-boot, staring Neil deGrasse Tyson (middle name mandatory), is, well, too gosh darn sciencey. Not enough religion!

Let’s look at a few of his complaints:

  • [It spews] the same old discredited junk science designed to discredit the Bible’s account of creation
  • The show includes a “Cosmic Calendar,” which asserts the scientifically unprovable notion that the history of the universe spans 13.8 billion years.
  • It promotes the unscientific nonsense of climate change and neo-Darwinism.
  • It deliberately and consciously undermines the possibility that God actually created the universe and made man in His own image, as the Bible records.
  • Tyson made this statement, which would be a surprise to scientists from Isaac Newton to George Washington Carver: “If you start using your scripture, your religious text as a source of your science, that’s where you run into problems. There is no example of someone reading their scripture and saying ‘I have a prediction about the world that no one knows yet because this gave me insight. Let’s go test this prediction and have that theory turn out to be correct.’”

Mr. Farah, how do you really feel?

Cosmos was met in general by the young-Earth creationist community with them demanding “equal time.” Yeah, as soon as I get equal time in your church on Sunday.

I’m not even quite sure why I’m devoting a blog post to this. Anyone who reads WND or has followed this blog knows that Farah is a YEC. This is just more YEC “wah!!!”-ing and shaking of their tiny fists as science yawns, rolls over, and crushes them.

As with most of Farah’s columns, however, this one was not met well by the WND readership, where many of the 202 comments are against him. The top-rated is by “DiffDrummer” who is a dualist: “There are many people who believe in God and science. One of God’s greatest gifts to mankind is the ability to reason. Science reinforces my belief in God.”

As is “sirpaulj7”: “Mr. Farah and so many bible-believing Christians are anti-science, and view it as somehow in opposition to God. But I see science as an AFFIRMATION of God’s existence, and shows like Cosmos leave me even more in awe than I was before.”

“TBP100” rounds out the top-five-rated comments with this: “Over the last 200 years or so, literally millions of scientists, in dozens of different disciplines and subdisciplines, from all over the world, representing every major religion and no religion, have conducted millions of experiments, unearthed millions of pieces of data, and made millions of observations. Without exception, every single one of these experiments, points of data, and observations confirm the idea that the earth is billions of years old, that the universe is even older, and support evolution as the best explanation for the diversity of life on earth. These conclusions have withstood literally millions of challenges over a couple of centuries without a mark on them. I suppose it’s possible that the scientists are all wrong, and that a handful of people lacking any serious training in the sciences at all, and who base their conclusions not on science but on a collection of haphazardly preserved, suspiciously translated ancient texts are right, but somehow I doubt it.”

And, in reply, I think “TheDukeOfHighwayJ” responds tongue-in-cheek in a way that those of us who’ve fought this battle know that YECs mean, somehow, seriously:

” I suppose it’s possible that the scientists are all wrong, and that a handful of people lacking any serious training in the sciences at all, and who base their conclusions not on science but on a collection of haphazardly preserved, suspiciously translated ancient texts are right ….”

HA! So you ADMIT its possible!!!

No, this is not a post from The Onion. Back when Supreme Court Justice Kennedy was appointed and confirmed to the Court, he was considered to be a conservative, siding often with the Court’s conservative wing. So far as I know, his general politics and policies have not changed. However, because of the shifting of the court to the more conservative side in terms of who has been appointed since him, Kennedy is now considered to be in the middle, the swing vote for whom lawyers try to tailor their arguments directly.

I think the same is true with Ann Coulter. When I was in college, she was among the most conservative crazies that we laughed at. In Family Guy there was an episode a few years ago where the area between Ann Coulter’s legs was used as a refrigerator at FOX “News.” I still have a clip of her on my computer saying that Canada is lucky the US doesn’t just roll over one day and crush it. She’s written several books, including, The Church of Liberalism: Godless and How to Talk to a Liberal (if You Must). So far as I know, she’s as conservative and crazy as she’s always been.

But, she’s not conservative enough for many on World Net Daily. She’s been supplanted by even more conservative and more crazy. That was the theme (or my interpretation of the theme) of Joseph Farah’s column (he’s the founder of WND) two weeks ago: “The Late Great Ann Coulter.”

To be sure, he still features her column (“Because agreement with me is not a requirement for being a WND commentator.”) But, there’s been a falling out:

While claiming to “love” the tea-party activists “out there in America,” she denigrates some unnamed organizations that are getting rich fighting “establishment Republicans.”

The solution to all of America’s problems, according to Ann Coulter, lies in electing Republicans – any and all Republicans. It doesn’t matter where they stand on the issues. It doesn’t matter how effective they have been in office. It doesn’t matter if they have betrayed those who elected them or the Constitution.

… I started to see some warning signs that Coulter was losing her principled edge just three years later in 2009, when she led a vicious public assault against “birthers,” as liberals and Democrats dubbed those who asked very tough questions about Barack Obama’s constitutional eligibility for the White House – questions that have still never been answered, by the way. WND’s reporting staff did not escape her scathing barbs.

That did not stop me from inviting her to be a keynote speaker at WND’s 2010 “Taking America Back” national conference in Miami – nor did her anti-birther positioning prevent her from accepting the gig.

But then she crossed a bridge too far, forcing me to disinvite her.

She accepted a keynote speaking invitation from GOProud, the organization that claims to be made up of conservative Republicans who are homosexuals. In fact, the group supports some of the most radical social ideas this side of Van Jones and Bill Ayers. The event was called, appropriately, “HOMOCON.” And that’s really what GOProud has always been about – conning “conservatives” into believing they are part of the movement to preserve the foundations of American liberty and self-government.

He goes on, including more about the falling out over GOProud, but I think you get the idea. Many of the 257 comments agree with Farah.

I guess this is a symptom of the increasing polarization of American politics. I think it’s right up there with the probable fact that Ronald Reagan, whom most Republicans pay homage – especially Tea Partiers – could not get elected by today’s Republican party. It’s unfortunate when one looks upon Ann Coulter and considers her among the more reasonable vocal conservative Republicans.

While the world watched in the past month as Uganda passed a “Jail the Gays” law, another quagmire was brewing closer to home for United States-ians. The Great Desert State of Arizona had a legislature that passed a bill that would have made it legal for any business to discriminate based on perceived or actual sexual orientation of a customer (okay, Arizona is actually nicknamed “The Grand Canyon State” and, alternatively, “The Copper State”). And, while World Net Daily has remained mum on Uganda, it was very vocal about Arizona:

So, very very briefly, the bill was passed by the legislature, and during the entire process and after passage, it was condemned as a step backwards in civil rights, literally making it condoned and protected, by law, to discriminate based on someone’s sexual orientation. Business leaders and political leaders reacted, as did protestors. Vehemently.

Protests Against Arizona SB1062

Protests Against Arizona SB1062

Mayors across the state urged Gov. Brewer to veto the bill saying, among other things, it would be bad for business. As referenced above, the NFL threatened to pull the Super Bowl out of Arizona. Apple, U-Haul, and other businesses said in no uncertain hints that they were against the bill and would consider re-locating if it was signed into law. Meanwhile, the state’s two federal Senators said she should veto it (including the entire John McCain family), and three of the Republicans who passed the bill in the legislature within days turned and told Gov. Brewer that they thought she should veto it. As did Mitt Romney and even Newt Gingrich. The Governor, who – make no mistake – is not a friend of the homosexual community or its allies and is very, very conservative, nonetheless, after several days, veto the bill. Probably because of this:

Arizona Gov. Brewer Afraid of Arizona Boycott (©The Miami Herald)

Arizona Gov. Brewer Afraid of Arizona Boycott (©The Miami Herald)

And so now we have finger-pointing. But real quick before that, here’s a Time article on the subject in case you want another source on the issue. And, as a consequence, similar bills that were pending in the legislatures of several other states, including Georgia and Mississippi, have been put on hold as a direct result of Gov. Brewer’s veto.

In a Tale of Two Headlines, World Net Daily is decidedly the latter, spinning this as anti-religious-freedom. Of course, setting up the false dichotomy of there can either be religious freedom or LGBT equality.

Tale of Two Headlines - Spin on Gov. Brewer's Veto of SB1062 that Would Legalize Discrimination

Tale of Two Headlines – Spin on Gov. Brewer’s Veto of SB1062 that Would Legalize Discrimination

The idea on the conservative, religious “right” is, as I said above, a false-dichotomy: They think that if they have to “accept” same-sex rights, if they cannot discriminate based on an actual or perceived sexual orientation because their Big Sky God (may his beard ever be a-flowing) supposedly thinks that The Gay is bad based on a book written 1500-4000 years ago (roughly speaking), then their own freedoms are being trampled upon. And Good Christian bakers may soon be forced to make penis cakes (no, I’m not joking, some actually think this).

In response to some of these WND stories, we have a plethora of comments, the kind you’d expect from an über-right-wing source:

  • “Joseph Miller”: “These republicans that are urging the veto of the religious freedom act are COWARDS and traitors to all REAL Americans. Pitting a mans freedom against losing the Super Bowl. Pathetic and abismal. Publish these republicans names so we know who to throw out if office!”
  • “sophia”: “Super bowl is more important than religious freedom and freedom to control one’s private business? Super bowl can go elsewhere if they wish, I’d rather fight for freedom from government more. They’s already usurped too much!”
  • “ratamacue76”: “This isn’t about equality, this is about intentionally targeting businesses due to the owner’s beliefs in order for forced affirmation of a same-gender fetish while simultaneously violating the first amendment rights of the business owners to create legal precedent.”
  • “skipgainer”: “What about the civil rights of these business owners to serve who they wish to serve. This is the flip side of civil rights that nobody wants to address. When you force someone to do something they do not want to do you are stripping them of their civil rights, that is the real truth!”
  • “Rachael N. Jacobs”: “Jan Brewer just sold her soul to satan. She failed to protect God’s people from the evil LBGT slaughter of Christian and conservative businesses, and violated the Freedom of Association section of the First Amendment. Shame on you, Jan, for caving to political ungodliness! May God have no mercy on your soul.”
  • “bewaretheprophetwhoseeksprofit”: “God will not be mocked. He will denounce those who denounce Him.”

You get the idea. Now, in fairness, I’ll repeat what I said before on this blog: I think that if you know a business, such as a cake-making bakery, is owned by anti-gay bigots, and you want a wedding cake for your same-sex nuptials, you probably shouldn’t go there anyway. As a public business and public accommodation, it is bound by public accommodation laws, but still, why go there if you think they might spit in the buttercream?

But let’s change the scenario. Replace “cake-making bakery” with “Christian hospital, which is the only hospital within a 3-hour drive.” And replace “want a wedding cake for your same-sex nuptials” with “need an emergency appendectomy.” Shouldn’t that hospital be required to accommodate you regardless of their “sincerely held religious beliefs?”

Or, let’s do what I’ve done before on this blog and just replace “gay” or “same-sex” with “black” or “inter-racial.” Suddenly, it becomes much more distasteful to admit that, yes, we want to discriminate against someone just because they’re black, or we don’t believe in inter-racial marriage, therefore we won’t bake you a cake, or let you visit your spouse’s bedside in the hospital.

I think that’s enough said. There are sure to be more posts on this on WND, especially as the weekend commentators start going at it, but I don’t plan to address it again on this blog unless there’s something really really crazy that’s said.