What if I told you there was a 90s band still in operation who have one hundred albums out? I mean, none of them are even remotely listenable, but that’s still pretty impressive, isn’t it? It’s true. Not only that, but they’re also bloodthirsty maniacs, with a decades-long love-hate mostly hate) affair with their audience. Every live show from, say, 1995 onwards has been a chaotic display of grinding noise, cross-dressing, live sexacts, self-mutilation, fist-fights, erotic wrestling, eye-gouging, tooth extractions, and non-stop ecstatic dancing. And they only last three minutes. Their name is Cock ESP (really, what else could/would they be called?), and if they’re not your new favorite band, you must be some kinda fuckin’ dummy.
This shit is normal in Minnesota.
It’s obviously a long story, but the thumbnail version is that in 1993, Minneapolis power electronics noisemonger Emil Hagstrom teamed up with metal percussionist P.C. Hammeroids to form an even noisier metal percussion-slash-power electronics shithouse ball of hardcore lunacy. Insanely prolific from the beginning, the band released scores of records every year, many with humorous titles like Our Embarrassment Is Your Pleasure, Three and a Half Inches of Floppy Cock (released on a floppy disk, naturally), and Suicide Girls Has Ruined Porn For An Entire Generation. Most albums feature short bursts of harsh improvisational noise. Some feature slightly longer bursts of harsh industrial noise.Their most infamous release is 2000’s Monsters of Cock, a 5” vinyl single with 381 tracks on it, released simultaneously by a dozen different labels. Even five-second blasts of noise add up to a lot of work when you do it 381 different ways, man.
Hagstrom is the only original member of the band left, but he always manages to find a few new drifters, sociopaths or miscreants to keep things rolling. Cock ESP’s latest album, 2016’s Noise Bloopers, consists entirely of equipment malfunctions. For the past few years, the band has used wireless equipment on stage—they’re far less likely to accidentally hang themselves this way—but wireless noise boxes are constantly on the fritz, and even with a three-minute show they fuck everything up a lot. So they made a “worst of” album. It is completely indistinguishable from their other albums.
Cock rock for the now generation
Here’s the point: you are not as cutting edge as you’d like to be unless Emil Hagstrom has broken your nose at a gig or you own at least 38 Cock ESP albums (not 37, poser!). For better or for worse, they are as far out as you can possibly get. I mean it’s almost definitely for worse, arguably much worse, but GG Allin is still dead, so this is all we have left.
In July, the $101 million “Ark Encounter” water park will open in Kentucky and now a group calling themselves the Tri-State Freethinkers—representing exasperated non-believers in Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana—are seeking to raise some money in order to put up billboards trolling the Creationist-themed amusement park. The Ark Encounter destination is specifically a water park based on the myth of Noah’s Ark. The park, created by a consortium of investors headed by creationist Ken Ham—the hapless silly person who debated Bill Nye—and his “Answers in Genesis” group, includes a 510-ft model of Noah’s Ark and an interactive teaching exhibit that er… uh… “teaches” the rather silly notion that it was in fact the Great Flood which separated the world’s continents.
The first $2,000 raised by the campaign—which they have done already—will go toward setting up a single small billboard for a month. If they’re able to raise $6,000, the group will be able to mount six small billboards or one big one along an interstate highway.
If they are able to raise $150 million, the Tri-State Freethinkers say “we will build our very own Genocide & Incest Park.” The group, which has over 1300 members, are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, so your donations are tax-deductible.
“I think what I’d do, as president, is I would make a phone call to whoever, to the group. I’d talk to the leader. I would talk to him and I would say, ‘You gotta get out — come see me, but you gotta get out.”
I mean, what is this thing anyway? A sequel to Waiting for Guffman, with a Posse Comatose perhaps? Is it Blazing Saddles directed by Alex Jones?
Or perhaps it’s an Americanized take on Chris Morris’ darkly funny incompetent terrorist comedy Four Lions? I like that last notion the best, but as I am currently (like many of you reading this, I’m sure) binge watching Making a Murderer on Netflix, I can’t help but to hope that they are rolling video 24/7 at the protest.
Like imagine how this video, a “selfie” meant ostensibly for his wife and children, shot by self-promoting, self-aggrandizing “patriot” anti-Muslim hate crime-waiting-to-happen Jon Ritzheimer might be used in the context of a ten hour, true life Netflix mockumentary about this event. In the clip, Ritzheimer, then en route to the Oregon Mensa gathering at Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, tearfully explains how “Daddy took an oath!”
Wow! He’s the fucking best, right? I can’t get enough of this goofy human time bomb.
But another colorful figure is starting to grab some of the spotlight…
LaVoy Finicum! This has to be the best name for a gun-toting rural rube since something WC Fields came up with, like Elmer Prettywillie or J. Pinkerton Snoopington… LaVoy fucking Finicum! Say it aloud for the maximum comic effect.
If you google his name, you’ll see that LaVoy Finicum is a fellow rancher and supporter of Cliven Bundy, Ammon’s daffy pappy and advisor to “the negro.” Finicum is also the author of the self-published quasi-apocalyptic anti-government novel Only By Blood and Suffering. Here’s his own blurb for the book, taken from Amazon:
Tells of a family’s struggle to come together and survive in the midst of national crisis. A stirring, fast-paced novel about what matters most in the face of devastating end-times chaos. Filled with gripping action and relatable characters, readers are drawn into the heart-rending dilemmas each member of the Bonham family faces. You may even find yourself stopping to ask, “What would I do?” LaVoy Finicum is a real life Northern Arizona Rancher who loves nothing more in life than God, freedom, and family. His spine tingling storytelling conveys in graphic detail just how fragile and precious freedom truly is and leaves his readers with an increased desire to stand for freedom
LaVoy Finicum also has a website to promote himself and his novel, OneCowboysStandForFreedom.com. Since joining up with Ammon Bundy in Oregon, Finicum was tweeted, several times, to get the word out on his book.
I’m quite sure that, well, with a name like his that LaVoy Finicum is sincere about his goofy anti-government beliefs, but I also can’t help but wonder if he’s just trying to siphon off a lil’ of Ammon Bundy’s media spotlight to help himself to sell a few books?
Or maybe he’s just a complete nutjob?
Let’s let the man speak for himself. Here’s what he told an NBC reporter about how far he would go to defend his “freedom”:
Sean Hannity: Do you think everybody goes to Heaven?
Colton Burpo: Um…. No. Not everybody does go to Heaven.
Sean Hannity: How do you know?
Colton Burpo, the little boy who had an NDE on an operating table a few years back and claimed to have been to Heaven, has had his experiences “there” recounted in several Heaven is for Real books that have sold like hotcakes to people desperate to believe they will live forever in the Kingdom of Heaven, eternally youthful, kickin’ it with their homeboy Jesus C. and all the dead people they ever knew.
Watch this clip of Colton promoting his parents’ books (his dad is a minister and radio broadcaster, natch) and a major Hollywood film about to come out based on this fiction. From where I’m sitting it seems rather obvious that this kid is lying through his teeth and Sean Hannity is just too stupid not to uncritically believe every word of it.
This is truly remarkable, Marjoe Gortner-level hoodoo nonsense. Even by the admittedly sad standards of Fox News, this is riveting in its abject stupidity…
Colton Burpo: Heaven is… such an amazing place and… and you just want to be there for a long time. I mean, I didn’t wanna come back.
Sean Hannity: What’s the difference… in other words, what did you see? What did you feel? Who did you meet?
Colton Burpo: Well, I saw a lot of stuff… In Heaven there are a lot of colors, but there’s even more than we have down here on Earth. Also I got to meet my great grandpa and my sister who was miscarriaged and… it just feels like home.
Hannity: And she came up to you? Are you there physically or spiritually?
Colton Burpo: You are there physically. You do have your own body.
Hannity: You were there in your body?
Colton Burpo: Well, not my earthly body, they were working on my earthly body.
Hannity: It’s the same? You look the same, relatively speaking?
Colton Burpo: Relatively speaking. If you die an old man or an old woman, you’ll be in your prime, like your late 20s, early 30s.
Hannity: And you say that you met Jesus Christ and God. (Colton nods) Can you describe God and Jesus Christ?
Colton Burpo: Well, Jesus was more like the humanoid version. He’s the one you can relate to because he… loves you so much and he’s actually your size, so you can like walk with him and talk with him.
Hannity: And you talked with him?
Colton Burpo: Yes.
Hannity: And he talked to you?
Colton Burpo: Yes.
Hannity: What did he say?
Colton Burpo: Well, I can’t remember what all it was that we talked about because some of it he even taught me! God has not allowed me to remember what Jesus has taught me.
Hannity: You saw God?
It just gets worse—and even more painfully funny—from there…
You can easily see why Hannity’s audience would eat this shit up, because it sounds exactly like something they already believe. Of course every mean old Archie Bunker watching Fox News will be young again in Heaven. Forever and ever! Throw away that Viagra! No need for it in Heaven, you’ll be 30 again soon, dude…
This is why there needs to a separation between church and state: America is a country full to the bursting point with idiots.
If this is the caliber of GOP political candidate one tends to find in Alaska, it goes a long, long way to explain why and how Sarah Palin ever got elected governor of that state.
Yep, check out this video, originally posted by Kathleen Tonn, who is running as a pro-life US Senate candidate, on her own Facebook page. In the clip Tonn is seen standing in a steam room, with all of her clothes on trying to “convert” a women by speaking/singing to her “in tongues.”
It’s pretty remarkable. Mind rot at its very finest. She wanted people to see this video. It was important to her, obviously. That’s why she made it and posted it, obviously…
“I’m at the Alaska Club West and I’m spending a little time in the steam room with Suzie. Suzie doesn’t know Jesus Christ as her savior, but ironically she has a pastor/priest who is her neighbor. So, she has allowed me to sing and deliver a message in the Holy Ghost and tongues.”
She mentions that her smartphone’s battery is running out and then:
“One point of clarification: Speaking in tongues or singing in tongues is very valuable because the message cannot be understood by Satan. But the Holy Spirit can use that message to bring deliverance, to bring clarity, to give discernment and words of wisdom and knowledge, and tongues is interpreted by a person who has the gift of interpretation. So I’m going to go fast.”
“I love to worship the Lord! I love the Bible! I stand for limited government, the Declaration of Independence and the American Constitution! I hate socialism with a passion!!! When the country collapses, what are you going to do?”
Obviously people have been poking fun at her, er, zaniness. One memorable comment, responding to her headline of “How To Get A Nation’s Attention,” described Tonn’s video as “an impromptu American Idol audition in gibberish for a stranger in a steam room.”
“I have not deleted the stupid and insane remarks made by others, so people can see what comes forth from the mind of evil. Fortunately there are legitimate, wise, Godly people who have viewed the content of this video clip. They contacted me too! For those individuals who are searching to learn truth about a Creator, this has helped them. So I won’t delete your dumb comments. They are very revealing of who and what you are!”
So is posting a video of yourself acting like a lunatic when you’re running for the US Senate. Just sayin’...
I am reminded of the subtitle of Lenny Bruce’s Togetherness album: “I’m not a nut, elect me!” You would think that right about now there might be thousands, even tens of thousands, of Alaskans—many of them meth-heads—thinking to themselves, “If this fuckin’ loony toons can run for the US Senate, then so can I!”
Over the weekend, the sweet story of Cassidy Lynn Campbell, a trans teenager from Huntington Beach, CA, who was elected homecoming queen during a high school football game made the news. A feel good video from a local news channel shot at the game showed Cassidy crying tears of joy as her friends rushed down from the bleachers to surround her with a group hug.
It was a very moving sight and one that warmed the hearts of many—but not all—of those who watched the clip on YouTube.
And now, predictably, the trolls have moved in, leaving hateful, shitty transphobic comments picking on Cassidy and really cruelly bullying and mocking her. At a time that should be the happiest time in her life, these assholes have nearly caused this kid to have a breakdown. Doing what many teens would do in this situation, Cassidy took to YouTube and recorded a tearful rebuttal to the haters.
It’s sad to watch. Her pain is visceral. Her anguish is obviously very, very real.
The comments, well, they’re horrifying. How could anyone be proud of themselves for causing a kid this kind of pain?
Terry Meeuwsen, the former Miss America who is Robertson’s long-suffering 700 Club TV co-host, demonstrates in this segment why she’s probably paid top dollar as she valiantly tries to corral this demented old codger from making an ass of himself in public. Again.
Despite Meeuwsen’s best attempts to steer the conversation away from Robertson’s anti-gay paranoia, Robertson insisted that gay people use special rings to transmit the virus.
“You know what they do in San Francisco, some in the gay community there they want to get people so if they got the stuff they’ll have a ring, you shake hands, and the ring’s got a little thing where you cut your finger,” Robertson said. “Really. It’s that kind of vicious stuff, which would be the equivalent of murder.”
Proving that stupidity among conservatives knows no national boundaries, “Hommen,” France’s most militant in-your-face anti-gay organization, largely comprised of ostensibly heterosexual males in their late teens and early 20s, have taken to protesting against the country’s marriage equality laws by taking their shirts off, writing anti-gay slogans across their bare chests and parading around shooting off flares like mentally-deficient members of the Hitlerjugend modelling for an Abercrombie & Fitch catalog.
Their name and the topless nature of their protest is a razzing of Ukraine’s topless Femen protest movement (who they abhor, one Hommen rep called Femem “terrorists”), but obviously these dudes haven’t really thought the whole topless thing all the way through in their particular context and the hilariously mixed message that their distinctly homoerotic protests communicate.
Because nothing says “virile young heterosexual males protesting against gay rights” like large masked groups of ‘em oiled up and naked to the waist with nary a woman in sight!
Nothing gay about it.
DEVOlution in Nantes
“I have ze ‘Democracy’ right ‘ere!”
“Liberté the Pony Boy” likes to give his pals in Hommen free rides. Clip-clop!
On their knees against gay rights.
You’ll have to come up with your own caption for this one!
OK, I know this will come off as a little harsh, heartless and probably as deeply lacking in compassion or empathy, but let me say that, first of all, someone needs to say it, and why not me? Although I’ve lived in New York City since I was 6 (well, with a few breaks here and there), I was actually born in Oklahoma City. And even though I do acknowledge that it’s distasteful to mention this “so soon,” it has to be said now, before the vote goes to Congress.
So here the fuck it is: NO EMERGENCY FUNDS FOR OKLAHOMA. There, I said it. Sorry, but fuck ‘em. Why do I say this? Is it simply because their scumbag senators (Tom Coburn and Jim Inhoffe) dragged their feet for MONTHS on voting for aid for New York and the Sandy-impacted areas here in the Northeast? Yeah, that’s part of it. A big part of it. Is it because both of them ultimately voted AGAINST Sandy-aid to this area? Yeah, that’s a big part of it, too. But it’s more than that. Much more, and soon you’ll see it too, so give me a minute to make my case…
The first thing that should be noted is that Oklahoma is one of the biggest, fattest, Federal-funds gobbling hobo states in the nation, receiving $1.36 in federal funds for every dollar in taxes it pays to the federal government (It’s also the 10th least unionized state with 5.5% union membership). Meanwhile, my state, New York, received just 79 cents back for each dollar that we paid, and we paid a helluva lot more in taxes than Oklahoma did. In other words, it’s fair to say that New York keeps Oklahoma afloat. We pay to keep Oklahomans employed and we pay to keep up their infrastructure via the federal funds Oklahoma vampirically sucks out of our state, to the detriment of our students and our fucking roads. And yet, Oklahoma senators were stupid enough to vote against Sandy aid? Huh?WTF?Please don’ hit me massah I’ll get back in de house!
At least a good pimp knows to sweet-talk his working girls when he needs to keep the cash flowing. But Senators Tom Coburn and Jim Inhoffe are incompetent boobs. Their reverse NIMBY shit is for the birds: What happens in their backyard isn’t as important as what happens in mine? Come on up to New York and say that to our faces (Peter King is a moron, but he’s right some of the time...).
Let me pause for a second and consider that not all of Oklahoma supports that incredibly hypocritical Repuglicant policy. There have to be some counties that recognized just how insane and self-defeating their bullshit policies are.Right? WRONG. Lookie here. Yep. All Oklahoma Counties voted for Romney. They were ALL “red” counties. (And both Senators, of course, are Repugs. I didn’t bother looking up if there were any Democratic Congresscritters, though I think there might be a couple.) Let’s also remember that Romney wanted to abolish FEMA. That’s right. Every Oklahoman county voted for the dumb scumbag that wanted to kill FEMA. So let’s give them what they wanted: NO FEMA FOR OKLAHOMA.
Now you’d think this is bad, almost a case to vote against aid to Oklahoma, but here’s the kicker. The real thing that makes me fuckin’ angry. Let me put it simply…
If I built a shack on, say, active train tracks and then, shortly thereafter, my shack was demolished when a freight train came through, how would you feel if I asked you for some money to rebuild my shack on those same goddamn train tracks? Without a doubt you’d say, “Fuck Off.” Well that’s what we have in Oklahoma City, and believe me I know: Oklahoma, Kansas, and the Texas Panhandle are all a part of “tornado alley” here in these United States. Remember The Wizard of Oz? That was Kansas, kids, right next door to Oklahoma. In other words, they get lots of tornadoes there every year and everybody knows it. It’s not a surprise, and maybe not (arguably) due to global warming or anything. And yet they’re playing Russian roulette again and again and again, very frequently losing. And they want us to bail them out? (Fun fact: Oklahoma building codes don’t require basements because it’d be more expensive.) New York, meanwhile, has NEVER been flooded before. New York flooding? NOW THAT’S A FRIGGIN’ DISASTER and yet, Oklahoma voted against aid to New York? And now they want US to bail THEM out… AGAIN?
Fuck that. No aid to Oklahoma for the tornadoes. Sorry, folks, you shot off a couple of rounds at your golden goose and now we’re gun-shy.
Truly the face of someone with absolutely nothing on her mind, isn’t it?
The President of the Central Mississippi Tea Party, a nincompoop named Janis Lane, believes that women are too “mean, hateful” and “diabolical” to be trusted with the vote, and probably shouldn’t have been given the right to vote in the first place.
In a conversation with two other members of the Tea party conducted by the Jackson Free Press, Lane put some pretty remarkable interjections into the conversation. The two other participants in the chat were Mark Mayfield, a real estate attorney and Kim Wade, who is a former Nation of Islam adherent and currently a conservative radio talk show host(!):
Sorry to shut the men out of the conversation, but I wanted to ask Janis about the role of women in conservative politics and reproductive rights.
Lane: I do not agree with the federal government supporting killing a preborn human. A child is a child from the moment of conception. The argument is: They’ve done it before, they’ll always do it. That’s probably true. My point is a nation should not support or condone the killing of anybody. Then you’ll come around with what about capital punishment. Well, you know what, if you’re on death row, you’re an adult and you made a choice to be there. An innocent child in the womb does not have a right to make a decision because they haven’t been born, yet. We’re taking that right away from that child.
But do you think there are too many male politicians telling women what to do with their bodies?
Wade: This is about right and wrong. How is it that they find a cell on Mars, then there’s evidence of life on Mars, but if there’s a cell in a womb, it’s not a baby? ... You don’t have the right to kill. If that was the case, then they had a right to kill us as blacks. If it’s just a matter of having enough votes in the Legislature to kill someone, then there’s nothing wrong with it.
Lane: I’m really going to set you back here. Probably the biggest turn we ever made was when the women got the right to vote.
What do you mean?
Lane: Our country might have been better off if it was still just men voting. There is nothing worse than a bunch of mean, hateful women. They are diabolical in how than can skewer a person. I do not see that in men. The whole time I worked, I’d much rather have a male boss than a female boss. Double-minded, you never can trust them. Because women have the right to vote, I am active, because I want to make sure there is some sanity for women in the political world. It is up to the Christian rednecks and patriots to stand up for our country. Everyone has the right to vote now that’s 18 or over (who is) a legal citizen, and every person that’s 18 and over and a legal citizen should be active in local politics so they can make a change locally, make a change on the state level and make a change in Washington, D.C.
God bless America.
More like God save America.
Hands up: Who thinks we need more fucking idiots involving themselves in conservative politics?
Me, I wholeheartedly support the likes of Janis and her busybody friends in the Central Mississippi Tea Party. They’re doin’ the Lord’s work, as far as I’m concerned, by putting such a grotesque and mentally incapacitated face on conservative “philosophy.”
If voters in his district are dumb enough to return Rep. Scott DesJarlais back to Washington this November, it might be time for Blue states to give some serious thought to secession.
But if they don’t, it will surely behoove DesJarlais, a physician before being elected to Congress as a Tea party-favored freshman in 2010, to consider what his next career move might be. The medical field might not be so welcoming, as DesJarlais will probably soon find out.
After Huffington Post exposed the publicly “anti-abortion” Republican congressman from Tennessee and his affair with a female patient last week—including an embarrassing transcript of a phone call from 2000 in which the “family-values” GOP rep pressured the woman to get an abortion—DesJarlais admitted to the affair (and that HE was the one who recorded the call!) but now claims that the woman wasn’t even pregnant, although the context of the conversation is that she was, in fact, four months pregnant…
“You have probably seen the recent media coverage regarding details of my divorce from over a decade ago. I had genuinely hoped this election would be about my record in Congress -– not a 12 year old divorce.”
How the hell can this fool think that this kind of behavior and outrageous hypocrisy WOULDN’T reflect on his hypocritical anti-choice votes? Now DesJarlais—asked just last week by John Boehner to lead a pro forma session of Congress—has been hit with a very public ethics violations charge:
The complaint filed Monday by the group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington argues that regardless of whether both parties wanted the relationship, it violates a state ethics law barring any sexual relations between doctors and patients. HuffPost noted the law in a story last week.
“Tennessee law is crystal clear: Doctors are prohibited from engaging in sexual relationships with patients,” said Melanie Sloan, the head of CREW. “The only question remaining is, now that Tennessee authorities are aware of Rep. DesJarlais’ blatantly unethical and scurrilous conduct, what are they going to do about it?”
In a letter to the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners, Sloan argues that the case merits an immediate investigation and sanctions, solely based on what DesJarlais has admitted.
“It is hard to imagine behavior much more craven than a married doctor exploiting his position to conduct a sexual relationship with a patient,” Sloan said in a statement accompanying the press release about the complaint. “It is mind-boggling that when confronted with the patient/mistress’s possible pregnancy, this ardent pro-lifer urged her to have an abortion. How much hypocrisy can we stand? Where is Speaker John Boehner’s much-touted zero tolerance for unethical conduct now?”
The pro-life when it suits his purposes Tennessee congressman seems keen for his constituents to hear that the woman wasn’t actually pregnant when he insisted that she get an abortion: “I don’t mind telling people that there was no pregnancy, and no abortion,” he said in a statement to WTN-FM radio host Ralph Bristol
Never mind that insisting with such fervor and recording the call seem like desperate measures when you’re not even sure she’s pregnant, but the release of the conversation is “old news” anyway, according to his campaign. During DesJarlais’s ugly House race in 2010, allegations surfaced that he threatened his ex-wife with a gun and once held a firearm in his mouth for hours, but the almost-abortion stuff actually happens to be new.
The Memphis Commercial Appeal reports that DesJarlais blames the leak of the transcript on “a disgruntled, defeated ex-congressman, a vindictive ex-wife, and a desperate Democratic candidate.” But for screwing around with a patient and taping himself bullying her into an abortion she didn’t even need, we’ll give DesJarlais some credit here too.
Although best-selling author David Barton is held in high esteem by Republican pols like idiot queen Michele Bachmann (to whom he’s a “national treasure”) and Chick-fil-A booster Mike Huckabee (who calls him “the single best historian in America today”) as well as by conservative broadcaster Glenn Beck (who went even further out on a limb than Huckabee, calling Barton “the most important man in America”!) anyone with half a brain who has followed the career of David Barton knows that he is little more than a shameless rightwing Christian fabulist, making things up out of thin air and then claiming that they actually happened. Some people, who don’t know any better, i.e., his readers, actually believe him.
David Barton, you see, is the historian of the Tea party. There is practically nothing his audience of goofy ignoramuses won’t swallow hook line and sinker from him, even though it’s easily demonstrable bullshit. If you know your ass from your elbow, you would be highly suspicious that there was very little of scholarly value in Barton’s “research.” (Barton says of his critics: “I don’t know if it’s jealousy or liberalism.”)
Some of Barton’s greatest shits include claims that Jesus Christ would have been opposed to the minimum wage and socialized medicine, that the Constitution quotes the Bible “verbatim” and that Thomas Jefferson sent missionaries to convert the Indians to Christianity!
What percentage of Americans, do you think, would know the truth of the matter anyway? A depressing thought, of course, for most of us. For David Barton, however, these knuckleheads are his bread and butter!
Barton specializes in pulling “facts” out of his ass to bedazzle the folks who show up for his WallBuilders sermon/lectures around the country with amazing things they never knew about American history. Amazing things that never actually happened! But. again, what do they know? When David Barton is introduced to them as a best-selling author—and indeed he IS one—he would have certain presumed bona fides to an audience that is almost always comprised exclusively of white, evangelical Christians who vote Republican. Even when what Barton has to say is complete nonsense, his audience, taking their cues from the solemn heads nodding in agreement all around them, have no way of knowing that what he is telling them is bunk and so Barton’s “assertions” becomes history to them.
It’s pathetic. No wonder Glenn Beck holds Barton in such high regard. They’ve got similar shticks.
As with Beck, Barton’s entire career of telling historical lies, is predicated on the necessary ingredient of an audience of Billy-Bobs Bojangles who “don’t know much about history” (as in next to NOTHING) who just want to hear their “ideas” about stuff confirmed in a room full of people who look and think just like they do. Barton’s talent is telling an audience of not very bright people (I’m not being unkind here) who are predisposed to want to hear something that sounds like something they already believe (like the Founding Fathers were religious) so as to confirm that not only are God and Jesus on THEIR side, the Tea party, Christian team side, but George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and John Adams as well.
Several Cincinnati-area African-American pastors announced that they were boycotting the Thomas Nelson company—the world’s largest Christian publisher—for publishing David Barton’s Jefferson book, claiming he “whitewashes” Jefferson, a well-known slave owner.
Jay W. Richards, senior fellow at the Discovery Institute, and author with James Robison of Indivisible: Restoring Faith, Family, and Freedom Before It’s Too Late, spoke alongside Barton at Christian conferences as recently as last month. Richards says in recent months he has grown increasingly troubled about Barton’s writings, so he asked 10 conservative Christian professors to assess Barton’s work.
The Thomas Nelson publishing company has decided to cease publication and distribution of David Barton’s controversial book, The Jefferson Lies: Exposing the Myths You’ve Always Believed about Thomas Jefferson, saying it has “lost confidence in the book’s details.” (See “The David Barton controversy,” Aug. 8.)
Casey Francis Harrell, Thomas Nelson’s director of corporate communications, told me the publishing house “was contacted by a number of people expressing concerns about [The Jefferson Lies].” The company began to evaluate the criticisms, Harrell said, and “in the course of our review learned that there were some historical details included in the book that were not adequately supported. Because of these deficiencies we decided that it was in the best interest of our readers to stop the publication and distribution.”
Ouch, ouch and double ouch.
David Barton will be a special delegate from Texas to the Republican National Convention. Of course!
It contains the following sentence which is going to see them mocked mercilessly for the next week or so:
We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.
Well, they’ve finally come right out and said it. In plain English. They want the population to STAY STUPID. That way they don’t question things like why poor people don’t have health insurance, why billionaires need to pay less in taxes and the middle class pay more, how fracking might poison the water table and you know, shit like that.
Wonkette’s Doctor Zoom encountered a fifth-grade Language Arts lesson on “Fact and Opinion” while doing graduate studies in the mid-80s. Zoom recalls from memory how the lesson explained the critical thinking task:
A fact is an observable reality, something that can be quantified or measured, or God’s Inerrant Truth as revealed through the Bible.
* The table is made of wood.
* Washington DC is the capital of the USA.
* Water freezes at 32 degrees F.
* Jesus died to take away all our sins.
* God created the world and all life in seven 24-hour days, less than 10 thousand years ago.
An opinion is a matter of taste, a view or judgement about which people might reasonably disagree, or a “scientific” claim that contradicts Biblical truth.
* Blue is prettier than yellow.
* My mom bakes the best chocolate chip cookies in town.
* Mr. Jones is a better candidate for Mayor than Mr. Smith.
* The Universe is several billion years old.
* Humans evolved from apes.
Red state public schools are teaching an organized system of ignorance, nothing more, and nothing less. How much longer can the center of this country hold when folks who believe that the Loch Ness Monster disproves evolution hold sway over the education of so many of the nation’s children?
Doctor Zoom concludes by bringing up the very question that caused my wife to question what she was being taught in Sunday school as a young girl when she began to suspect that the whole Noah’s Ark thing was nothing more than mythological bullshit:
So, yes, think critically, kids, but don’t think so critically that you ask any inconvenient questions, like “wouldn’t two of every animal species on Earth produce so much shit that the Ark would be full to the top within a matter of days?” (Beyond the obvious Biblical nonsense, there’s also some empirical evidence that the particular methods in ACE’s curriculum leaves students less well prepared for college entrance exams than conventional high schools.)
Let us be clear about this: Texas is only against the wrong kind of critical thinking — the dirty librul kind, which isn’t even really thinking at all, but indoctrination, you see. As college-degree owner Rick Santorum knows, too much education will only turn you into a commie and an atheist. Texas Republicans promise they’ll nip that thinky-learny shit right in the bud.
Once those kids start pulling on the thread of KNOWLEDGE the whole sweater becomes unraveled. We can’t have this, can we?
And while we’re on the subject of Republicans being more, um, straightforward on things, did you catch the clip of this asshole from Pennsylvania stating the obvious about the state’s voter ID law?
Legal election fraud to prevent voter fraud. NICE WORK GOP!!
If you can’t get elected because of your ideas, it’s because your ideas SUCK.