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This Week In Crazy: Meet The Hillary Shoe Truthers, And The Rest Of The Worst Of The Right

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Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the wildest attacks, conspiracy theories, and other loony behavior from the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Bryan Fischer

And Jesus said to His disciples, “Truly I say to you, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.” “Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” —Matthew 19

As a self-styled leader of the religious right, American Family Association mouthpiece Bryan Fischer is certainly familiar with that passage from the Bible. But during the Tuesday’s tax-day edition of his radio show, Fischer proposed an addendum: What if the rich man enters with a ticker-tape parade?

//www.youtube.com/embed/od1abwBWk3s

“The top 1 percent are funding 30 percent of the government!” Fischer raged. “So, rather than the poor, the low income and the middle class being resentful of these people, they should be kissing the ground on which they walk!”

“Who’s paying for the EBT cards? Who’s paying for food stamps? Who’s paying for the women and infant children program? Who’s paying for subsidized housing? Who’s paying for Medicaid? It is the top 1 percent,” he added. “So, they ought to be given ticker-tape parades once a week in all of our major cities to thank them for funding welfare for everybody.”

If Ken Langone ever abandons Chris Christie, maybe he should try to draft Fischer into the 2016 presidential race. After all, they share an obsession with the 1 percent — and the Nazis.

4. Phyllis Schlafly

schafly

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

After their high-profile struggle to reconcile Equal Pay Day with opposing the Paycheck Fairness Act, Republicans began redoubling their efforts to sell women on the GOP.

And as usual when Republicans are trying to attract new voters, Phyllis Schlafly is here to screw things up.

In a Tuesday op-ed for the Christian Post, Schlafly took it upon herself to lay out the anti-feminist case for the gender pay gap. In short: Women should be happy to make less money, because it will help them find a husband.

While women prefer to HAVE a higher-earning partner, men generally prefer to BE the higher-earning partner in a relationship. This simple but profound difference between the sexes has powerful consequences for the so-called pay gap.

Suppose the pay gap between men and women were magically eliminated. If that happened, simple arithmetic suggests that half of women would be unable to find what they regard as a suitable mate.

Obviously, I’m not saying women won’t date or marry a lower-earning men, only that they probably prefer not to. If a higher-earning man is not available, many women are more likely not to marry at all.

Schlafly later added that “The best way to improve economic prospects for women is to improve job prospects for the men in their lives, even if that means increasing the so-called pay gap.”

Meanwhile, somewhere in Washington D.C., Reince Priebus is presumably sobbing into a copy of his “Growth and Opportunity Project.“

3. “Blood Moon” Watchers

blood moon

 Photo via Wikimedia Commons

 

To say that Tuesday’s lunar eclipse upset some members of the far right would be a dramatic understatement.

Many people refer to the eclipse as a “blood moon,” because sunlight filtering through the Earth’s atmosphere gives the moon a red hue during the event. Pastor John Hagee’s reasoning is a bit different, however; he thinks that the blood moon represents the beginning of the End Times.

“I believe that the heavens are God’s billboard, that he has been sending signals to planet Earth, and we just haven’t been picking them up.” Hagee says. “God is literally screaming at the world, ‘I’m coming soon.’”

Hagee has dabbled in apocalyptic rhetoric before; he once claimed that God sent Hurricane Katrina to New Orleans because the city was planning a sinful “homosexual rally.”As for the latest sign of a vengeful God, you can conveniently learn more about the coming apocalypse by buying Hagee’s book!

While Pastor Hagee believes that the blood moon signals the end of days, Pastor Mark Blitz has an even crazier theory: The eclipse is just God giving the finger to Barack Obama.

Writing in WorldNetDaily (of course), Blitz explains:

Barack Obama quite recently, expressing his frustration that Republican members of Congress won’t give him what he wants, threatened arbitrary executive action, promising that he has a “pen and phone.”

But there are “flashing red warning lights” in the heavens that should command peoples’ attention right now, because the one behind those warnings, God, had “more than a pen and a phone in his hand,” according to the author of “Blood Moons: Decoding the Imminent Heavenly Signs.”
…
“I believe the moons are like flashing red warning lights at a heavenly intersection saying to Israel as well as the nations they will be crossing heavenly red lines and if they do, they will understand as Pharaoh did on Passover night 3,500 years ago that the Creator backs up what He says.

“Like Pharaoh the leaders and pundits of today will realize when it comes to crossing the red lines of the Creator of the universe he has more than a pen and a phone in his hand.”

Look on the bright side: At least the religious right is (kind of) talking about science!

2. Ted Yoho

 yoho

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

U.S. Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) earned plenty of attention this week for telling a black voter that the Civil Rights Act may be unconstitutional, but that may not have even been his craziest statement of the day.

After the controversial town hall meeting on Monday, ThinkProgress’ Scott Keyes interviewed Yoho about climate change:

KEYES: Droughts and extreme weather have been on the rise here in Florida. Do you think that’s something that’s attributable to manmade climate change?
YOHO: No. I think it’s a natural occurrence. I think we need to be good stewards of the resources we have and we need to get better, which we have, through technology and innovation.
KEYES: Do you think scientists are right on climate change or are they off-base on it?
YOHO: I think there’s an agenda-driven science. I can read stuff that says that the information was skewed. It’s not right. I’m a guy that’s worked out in the weather since I was 16. I can tell there’s climate change. The cause? I’m not smart enough for that.

So Floridians can go ahead and forget about the extreme dangers that climate change poses to their state. Ted Yoho may not be smart enough to know why he’s been getting sweatier while he works out in the weather, but he’s certain that he knows more than 97 percent of climate scientists.

And after all, unskewing numbers never goes wrong for Republicans.

1. Shoe Truthers

shoe

 Image by Mike Licht via Flickr

 When a woman threw her shoe at former secretary of state Hillary Clinton during a speech last week, regular This Week In Crazy readers knew what would happen next: The Shoe Truthers are here.

First, there was Arthur Louis. Writing on the website of Fox News contributor Bernard Goldberg, Louis began by parroting Brian Kilmeade’s assertion that George W. Bush is a much better shoe-dodger than Clinton, who “ducks flying shoes like a girl.” He then gets to the meat of his point:

“There is a political axiom, I believe first posed by Euclid or Archimedes, that when Hillary does something, or when something happens to her, she has carefully calculated it beforehand,” he writes. “So it would not be stretching logic to suppose that Hillary arranged to have the shoe thrown at her. Remembering the Bush incident, she may have calculated that this would make her seem presidential.”

The stupidity didn’t stop there. Disgraced former presidential candidate and pizza magnate Herman Cain weighed in via Twitter:

And when there’s a stupid conspiracy theory about the Clintons, Rush Limbaugh is always on the case.

“I just do not attach much genuineness to them at all and I don’t know why anybody would be throwing a shoe at Hillary,” Limbaugh said. “Unless, maybe it’s an attempt to make the Benghazi people look like nuts and lunatics and wackos.”

http://mediamatters.org/embed/198882

That’s right: Hillary Clinton arranged to have a shoe thrown at her head to distract America from #Benghazi.

We have a long way to go until 2016.

Check out previous editions of This Week In Crazy here. Think we missed something? Let us know in the comments!

 

Image, top: Red shoe by Mike Licht via Flickr

A version of this article originally appeared in The National Memo and is republished here by permission.

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News

Trump Makes False Claims About Classified Documents – And Obama

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Donald Trump is responding to news reports he is under FBI investigation for actions covered by the Espionage Act by making apparently false claims about his mishandling of classified documents and about former President Barack Obama.

“Number one, it was all declassified,” Trump says in a post on his Truth Social site, a claim legal experts say is incorrect. For any president to declassify documents, experts say, there is a process that involves actions being taken on each individual document. They also say the president does not have legal authority to declassify documents related to nuclear weapons.

“Number two,” Trump continues, “they didn’t need to ‘seize’ anything. They could have had it anytime they wanted without playing politics and breaking into Mar-a-Lago. It was in secured storage, with an additional lock put on as per their request.”

READ MORE: FBI Agents Searched Mar-a-Lago for ‘Classified Documents Relating to Nuclear Weapons’: Report

Again, according to reports, that too is false. DOJ issued a subpoena after the National Archives tried to get all the documents back and Trump still did not comply.

“They could have had it anytime they wanted—and that includes LONG ago,” he continues in a separate post on Truth Social. “ALL THEY HAD TO DO WAS ASK.”

Again, multiple reports say they did, numerous times.

READ MORE: DOJ Served Trump With Grand Jury Subpoena for Classified Documents Months Before FBI Raid: Report

None of his responses explain why he had at Mar-a-Lago what we now know were at least 35 cartons – 20 retrieved on Monday and 15 earlier this year – of items including confidential, classified, and top secret documents that were required by law to have been handed over to the National Archives.

“The bigger problem is,” Trump says, “what are they going to do with the 33 million pages of documents, many of which are classified, that President Obama took to Chicago?”

That is also false.

The National Archives on Friday issued a statement after Trump repeatedly spread the false claim that former President Barack Obama had 33 million documents in his possession.

“President Barack Hussein Obama kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified. How many of them pertained to nuclear? Word is, lots!” was one of Trump’s false attacks on his Truth Social site.

“The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) assumed exclusive legal and physical custody of Obama Presidential records when President Barack Obama left office in 2017, in accordance with the Presidential Records Act (PRA),” the Archives said in a statement posted to its website Friday.

“NARA moved approximately 30 million pages of unclassified records to a NARA facility in the Chicago area where they are maintained exclusively by NARA,” the Archives added. “Additionally, NARA maintains the classified Obama Presidential records in a NARA facility in the Washington, DC, area. As required by the PRA, former President Obama has no control over where and how NARA stores the Presidential records of his Administration.”

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BREAKING NEWS

Trump Under FBI Investigation for Potential Violation of the Espionage Act Legal Experts Say

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‘Simply Jaw-Dropping’: Legal Experts Also Stunned Over Top Secret, Confidential Contents of Cartons FBI Seized From Mar-a-Lago

“A search warrant viewed by POLITICO reveals that the FBI is investigating Donald Trump for a potential violation of the Espionage Act and removed classified documents from the former president’s Florida estate earlier this week,” Politico reports.

The New York Times also confirms.

“Federal agents who executed the warrant did so to investigate potential crimes associated with violations of the Espionage Act, which outlaws the unauthorized retention of national security information that could harm the United States or aid a foreign adversary; a federal law that makes it a crime to destroy or conceal a document to obstruct a government investigation; and another statute associated with unlawful removal of government materials.”

Based on the search warrant released to far-right media outlet Breitbart News, multiple legal experts also say Donald Trump, the former president is under FBI investigation for potentially violating the Espionage Act.

READ MORE: FBI Agents Searched Mar-a-Lago for ‘Classified Documents Relating to Nuclear Weapons’: Report

“A federal magistrate judge has found probable cause to believe evidence of the crime of ESPIONAGE to be found at Mar-A-Lago. Repeat 5 times,” writes former U.S. Attorney and DOJ official Harry Litman, now an LA Times legal affairs columnist. He also notes that “top secret/compartmented is stratospherically high classification. Scandal he ever had in [those documents] the first place.”

Top national security lawyer Brad Moss writes: “18 U.S.C. 793 – Espionage Act. That’s for willful/grossly negligent removal of information relating to the national defense. 18 U.S.C. 2017 and 18 U.S.C. 1519 – that’s for concealing federal records.”

Moss also retweeted this statement by veteran Cox Radio Capitol Hill correspondent Jamie Dupree:

“So the leak of the Trump search warrant via Breitbart indicates that former President Donald Trump is under investigation for violating the Espionage Act and for Obstruction of Justice.”

Civil liberties and national security journalist Marcy Wheeler also confirms, writing: “The hilarious thing is that since Brietbart doesn’t even know what a Supervisory Special Agent is, they probably don’t realize they’ve confirmed that Trump is under investigation for violating the Espionage Act.”

READ MORE: Suspect Who Shot Up FBI Office Days After Mar-a-Lago Raid Was Trump Supporter Who Called to Kill FBI ‘On Sight’: Report

Western New England University School of Law law professor Jennifer Taub also confirms, writing: “Donald Trump is being investigated for espionage.”

The Wall Street Journal was first to publish details of what FBI agents seized from Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago mansion on Monday. Legal experts have been calling Friday afternoon’s revelations “jaw-dropping.”

FBI agents “removed 11 sets of classified documents, including some marked as top secret and meant to be only available in special government facilities, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal,” the WSJ report states.

Despite initial reports the FBI seized between ten and 12 cartons of documents and other materials unlawfully removed from the White House to Mar-a-Lago, there were 20 cartons retrieved. That is in addition to the 15 cartons the National Archives were forced to retrieve earlier this year.

“The list includes references to one set of documents marked as ‘Various classified/TS/SCI documents,’ an abbreviation that refers to top-secret/sensitive compartmented information. It also says agents collected four sets of top secret documents, three sets of secret documents, and three sets of confidential documents. The list didn’t provide any more details about the substance of the documents.”

The classified/TS/SCI markings are the most important.

Legal experts say the search warrant was “broad,” and indeed the Journal reports the warrant “shows that FBI agents sought to search ‘the 45 Office,’ as well as ‘all storage rooms and all other rooms or areas within the premises used or available to be used by [the former president] and his staff and in which boxes or documents could be stored, including all structures or buildings on the estate.'”

Late Thursday evening The Washington Post revealed FBI agents were looking to retrieve classified documents “related to nuclear weapons,” making Monday’s raid all the more important, and Trump and his teams handling – or mishandling – of those documents all the more egregious.

The George Washington University Law School’s Professor of Government Procurement Law, Steven L. Schooner, says, “removal of, failure to account for, & failure to return (under subpoena) ‘classified/TS/SCI documents’ is, ugh, simply jaw-dropping, and that’s regardless of whether it’s nuclear-related.”

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Watch: Boebert’s Mic Cut After Going Over Time and Refusing to End Lie-Filled Rant

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U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) refused to end her remarks attacking popular Democratic legislation known as the Inflation Reduction Act, and after being repeatedly warned – four times – she was over time as she ranted and delivered falsehoods on the House floor her microphone was finally cut.

Congresswoman Boebert, part of the far-right fringe that has taken over the Republican Party, yelled and wagged her finger as she spread misinformation.

In an ironic twist the pro-gun activist and former owner of Shooters Grill angrily – and falsely – claimed the bill mandates the hiring of 87,000 armed IRS agents.

“What are we doing here? What are we passing this so-called Inflation Reduction Act if inflation is at zero percent?” she asked.

READ MORE: Here’s How Lauren Boebert Is Defending Screaming at Biden as He Addressed Veterans With Burn-Pit Cancer

Inflation in fact for the month of July was flat, coming in at zero percent, which brought the annual inflation rate down from 9.1% to 8.5%.

“Well in fact it’s the inflation enhancement act,” Boebert, a spreader of conspiracy theories falsely argued, calling it “just another con game by the Democrats,” which also is false.

She then went on to claim the IRS would have more “armed agents” than the Defense Dept.

READ MORE: ‘It’s So Gross’: NY Times Blasted for Negative Reporting on Biden by ‘Blindered Horse-Race Analysts’

After being warned four times she had gone over time her mic was cut, but she was subsequently granted additional time.

The Colorado Congresswoman, a pro-gun extremist, went on to lie that the Inflation Reduction Act “hires 87,000 IRS agents and they are armed and the job description tells them that they need to be required to carry a firearm and expect to use deadly force if necessary,” she shouted, calling it “armed robbery.”

The bill will enable the IRS to hire new employees, but nowhere near 87,000. Only a tiny fraction, about 300, would be armed, and not for nefarious purposes like “armed robbery.”

“Though the job is really about sniffing out income and accounting irregularities to build legal cases,” CBS News reports, “one of the potential duties is ‘conduct[ing] or participat[ing] in surveillance, armed escorts, dignitary protection, undercover operations, execution of search and arrest warrants, seizures, etc.,’ the job listing states.”

Boebert began by calling “supporters of this legislation insane,” falsely implied the Inflation Reduction Act increases taxes on ordinary middle-class Americans, while mocking “Green New Deal initiatives.”

Seconds after her “armed robbery” remarks Boebert again ran into overtime. Her mic was cut after the second warning.

Kentucky Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth, who spoke immediately after her, blasted the Colorado Congresswoman.

Watch below or at this link:

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