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GOP Intellectual Malpractice: Syrian Refugees And Paris Attacks Edition

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Opinion: 25 GOP governors now illegally refusing refugees, and all based on a fake Syrian passport. 

The level of Republican inhumanity and stupidity, and refusal to look for facts has reached new heights.

Remember George W. Bush and the lies he and his administration told in the run up to the Iraq War? 

Bush didn’t look for facts, and when confronted with them, he dismissed them. You’re seeing today by Republicans that same level of intellectual malpractice, a lack of curiosity about facts, a pandering to the base and an almost viral race to the bottom of the barrel of stupidity.

At least 25 of America’s 31 Republican governors today (and sadly, Democratic governor Maggie Hassan) have issued press releases, tweets, and executive orders mandating – and boasting – their state will not accept any Syrian refugees. Unfortunately, it appears none of them bothered to actually check if they have the authority to refuse refugees here legally, though an extremely rigorous federal process.

And, of course, these “pro-life” “conservative Christian” governors, it turns out, do not have the authority to refuse refugees.

But what they do have is the ability to grandstand and to turn the tide of public opinion against the very people running from terrorists, and have Americans see them as terrorists, so when they do get to America (insert obligatory “land of the free, home of the brave” quote here) many will likely become victimized by a pathetically ignorant, Fox News watching populace that equates “Muslim” with “terrorist.”

To be clear, even France has called the murder of 129 people in the Paris attacks, not to mention the hundreds who have suffered injuries, “an issue of internal domestic security.”

Or, to be even more clear, as ThinkProgress reports, “All of the attackers from Friday’s massacre in Paris so far have been identified as European Union nationals, according to a top EU official.”

That story about one of the terrorists having a Syrian passport is either fake, or his passport was.

Here’s the list of Republicans who have stated America should refuse Syrian refugees, or have stated they will not allow them in their state, all based on a false story about a Paris attacks terrorist with a fake Syrian passport.

Republican Governors:

Robert Bentley of Alabama
Doug Ducey of Arizona
Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas
Rick Scott of Florida
Nathan Deal of Georgia
Butch Otter of Idaho
Mike Pence of Indiana
Terry Branstad of Iowa
Bruce Rauner of Illinois
Sam Brownback of Kansas
Bobby Jindal of Louisiana
Paul LePage of Maine
Charlie Baker of Massachusetts
Rick Snyder of Michigan
Phil Bryant of Mississippi
Pete Ricketts of Nebraska
Chris Christie of New Jersey
Pat McCrory of North Carolina
John Kasich of Ohio
Mary Fallin of Oklahoma
Nikki Haley of South Carolina
Bill Haslam of Tennessee
Greg Abbott of Texas
Scott Walker of Wisconsin
Matt Bevin, governor-elect of Kentucky

GOP Presidential Candidates:

Donald Trump
Ben Carson – no religious test, but an “ideological” one
Marco Rubio
Ted Cruz
John Kasich
Rand Paul 
Jeb Bush – only Christian refugees
Carly Fiorina
Chris Christie – no Syrian refugees, “not even 5-year-old orphans
Lindsey Graham
Mike Huckabee
George Pataki
Rick Santorum

Image by Mike Licht via Flickr and a CC license

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PERSON WOMAN MAN CAMERA TV

Trump-Loving ‘Candy Man’ Congressman Demands President Biden Take Cognitive Test

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Despite a highly-successful eight-day overseas trip culminating with a U.S.-Russia Summit displaying his ability to right the national “ship” on the world stage, and despite favorable response from world leaders, President Joe Biden is being asked by a group of 14 Republican congressmen, led by Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-TX), to take a cognitive test to judge his mental acuity.

It all feeds into the Fox News narrative, one blown to pieces by Biden’s performance in the UK with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Queen Elizabeth, the G7 in Brussels, meeting with NATO leaders and separately with the president of Turkey, and finally to Geneva where he held the Summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Congressman Jackson, the former Obama and Trump White House physician, along with 13 other House Republicans in a letter to President Biden (below) cited a news report of an incident where Biden allegedly called Senator John Cornyn “Representative – Senator Cornyn,” correcting himself.

In the letter they also claim  he mixed up the time of day, and once “while on the campaign trail,” Biden “grew testy” when asked if he would take a cognitive test.

They cite other news reports of Biden mispronouncing names, and saying he was allegedly unable to recite part of the Declaration of Independence.

“Most school-age children could recite that famous and revered patriotic phrase by heart, but you could not,” the letter charges.

As White House physician Rep. Jackson told reporters President Trump, who he strongly supports, had “incredibly good genes” and praised his performance on a test for Alzheimers as “exceedingly well.” That was the test where Trump impressed himself by being able to remember five words, in order: “person, woman, man, camera, TV,”  and then told a reporter he did “amazing.”

In March NBC News reported that Jackson had “engaged in ‘inappropriate conduct’  while serving as the top White House physician, according to a Pentagon inspector general report.”

“The scathing report, NBC said, “alleges abusive behavior toward subordinates including sexual harassment.”

The inspector general’s review, first reported by CNN, says Jackson drank alcohol, made sexual comments to subordinates and took the sedative Ambien while working as White House physician. The watchdog also found that Jackson mistreated subordinates and “disparaged, belittled, bullied and humiliated them.”

Jackson had been nominated by then-President Donald Trump to become Secretary of the Veterans Administration, when it was revealed that he had handed out prescriptions “like candy,” and was nicknamed “the candy man” inside the White House, CNN reported in 2018.

Democratic Senator John Tester “described reports to the Veterans’ Affairs Committee that alleged that on overseas trips, Jackson would ‘go down the aisle way of the airplane and say, ‘All right, who wants to go to sleep?’ And hand out the prescription drugs like they were candy … and put them to sleep and then give them the drugs to wake them back up again.'”

“Tester’s staff told CNN that Jackson would hand out Ambien and Provigil,” CNN reported. “These are called controlled substances for a reason,” Tester said.

Dr. Jackson, CNN added, “also faces allegations of being drunk while overseas with then-President Barack Obama.”

“If you are drunk and something happens with the President, it’s very difficult to go in and treat the President,” Tester said. “That’s what multiple people told us, this was the case on several different trips.”

Tester said there had been comments that Jackson would not be able to respond “because he had been drinking so much.”

Jackson has denied all the allegations.

Here’s Jackson’s letter:

 

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CLUELESS

Rep. Greene Files Bill to Eliminate ATF Then Attacks Biden Over Drug Cartels – Which ATF Targets and Investigates

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U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) on Thursday announced she has filed a bill that would eliminate the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). One hour later in a spottily-attended press conference Greene angrily attacked President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, whom she falsely accused of allowing the U.S. southern border to be “wide open” to allow drug trafficking.

“President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are in business with the cartels,” Greene declared, lying to reporters. “They are in business with the criminals. Because their border policies, of ripping our southern border wide open is allowing the cartels to get rich beyond their wildest dreams, as they traffic humans and drugs across our border.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives works to target, investigate, and prosecute cartels that traffic in illegal guns – and drugs.

Earlier this month, for example, the Dept. of Justice published a press release announcing “Eight Members of Armed Drug Trafficking Organization Charged by Federal Indictment.”

“This case,” DOJ says, “was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, and the Lake City Police Department.”

The indictment charges “eight individuals in Florida with conspiracy to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute MDMA, also known as ‘ecstasy’ or ‘molly’, and α‑Pyrrolidino­pentiophenone, also known as ‘alpha-PVP’ or ‘flakka.’ If convicted, each faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison. The indictment also notifies the defendants that the United States intends to forfeit property that was used to facilitate the offense or that is traceable to proceeds of the offense, including approximately $185,000 in cash, a 2015 BMW 550i, a 2015 Lexus IS 250, a 2013 Audi A8 L Quattro, a 2020 Ryker Rally Edition motorcycle, two Rolex watches, numerous pieces of jewelry, and five firearms.”

It’s the forfeiture of the firearms that Greene has a problem with.

“I just introduced the bill to eliminate the ATF,” Greene says in her recorded video Thursday, during which she mispronounced the word “introduced.”

“The war on gun owners’ rights has been waged long enough and it’s time to stop it.”

Those eight individuals captured by federal authorities, including by the ATF, are U.S. citizens, gun owners, living and operating in Florida, who “were part of an armed drug trafficking organization that distributed illegal narcotics, primarily out of a ‘trap house’ on 14th Street in Jacksonville, beginning in July 2018 and continuing until April 13, 2021, when six of the defendants were arrested,” the DOJ statement says.

That investigation is far from the only one that makes Greene’s desire to eliminate ATF problematic if she actually is concerned about drug trafficking and cartels.

A few headlines:

ATF targets gun dealers to stem sales to Mexican cartels.”

Where do Mexican drug cartels get their guns? The US.

More than 36 pounds of drugs, guns seized in three month period,” revealing:

It is a joint effort– the Unified Narcotics Enforcement Team aims to stop the trafficking of illegal drugs in South Dakota, comprised of Pennington County Sheriff’s deputies and Rapid City Police officers, they work with the State Division of Criminal Investigations, Highway Patrol, and federal agencies like the DEA, ATF, and Homeland Security to fight illegal drug distribution, from the top down.

If Greene wants to get rid of illegal drugs getting rid of the agency that gets rid of illegal guns isn’t going to help.

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

GOP Congressman: FBI ‘Participated’ in Insurrection to ‘Entrap’ Harmless Protestors and ‘Frame the MAGA Movement’

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U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) is demanding the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Dept. of Justice tell Congress what they know about their own alleged “participation” in Donald Trump’s January 6 insurrection, which led to at least seven deaths. Gohmert falsely claims the attack on the U.S. Capitol – which in reality was an attempted coup designed to overturn a free and fair election – was instead a “monumental entrapment scheme used as a pretext to imprison otherwise harmless protestors” and used to “frame the entire MAGA movement as potential domestic terrorists.”

News organization The Recount calls Gohmert’s assertions “a bullshit baseless conspiracy theory.”

The Texas Republican congressman, explained on Thursday on the floor of the House that his “friend,” Fox News white supremacist host Tucker Carlson “covered this last night,” called the conspiracy theory “really disturbing… because we don’t like to see government agents stirring up trouble or find that there are criminal acts that would not likely have occurred had not the federal government been participating.”

Having no evidence that January 6 was an “inside job,” which is what Gohmert is asserting, he goes on to make up possible scenarios, again, without any basis in fact.

“Whether they were actual agents, or an undercover agents, or informants that were working for the federal government. But this is scary stuff this is, This is kind of third world stuff, this is not only third world stuff but this is like Putin-like kind of activity. So, if there were federal agents that were involved on January 6, we really need to know what the FBI knew and when they knew it, and not only that, we need to know how much participation did any of our federal friends either at DOJ, FBI, or any of the Intel Community, what kind of role were they playing?”

It’s almost like he is demanding Speaker Pelosi form a Special Committee to investigate the January 6 insurrection.

 

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