union

Newt Gingrich Has The "Eye Of The Tiger"

In honor of the news that Newt Gingrich is going to announce his intention to run for president tomorrow, I just want to piggyback off our our earlier post to just take remind everyone of just how massive his ego already is.

Starting with his speech at the annual CPAC conference in 2009, Gingrich has made a habit of turning his mere entrance into a spectacle. While every other speaker during every other CPAC has entered the stage from the wings, Gingrich alone enters the room from behind and works his way, state-of-the-union-like, through the crowd as Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger" blast over the speaker system.

Note the very first video from 2009 where David Bossie looks off stage after introducing Gingrich, expecting him to enter from the wings as every other speaker had done, and questioningly throwing up his hands when he doesn't appear, only to see Gingrich emerge from the crowd moments later much to everyone's surprise:

And he proceeded to do the very same thing the next year:

And he did it once again this year:

Keyes: Mission To Kill Bin Laden May Have Been "Driven By Political Considerations"

After warning that President Obama was devising a scheme of using international forces to stay in power, Alan Keyes is now raising doubts about the successful operation to kill Osama bin Laden. Keyes likens the Obama administration to the Soviet Union, and claims that “back chatter” tells him that Obama and his advisers may have been opposed to the raid against bin Laden because of his “politically correct concerns about offending Islamic sensibilities” that made him “act the part of timid politicos.” But Keyes also maintains that Obama wanted bin Laden killed rather than capture him alive for more sinister, politically-motivated reasons:

Following the track of events in America's governmental and political life these days is like reading Pravda in the heyday of Soviet Communism. This should come as no surprise in an era when the executive branch of the U.S. government is dominated by a faction whose figurehead sports a biography steeped in his ideological affinity for hard-line leftist associates (not excluding the kind of terrorist affinities for which Obama mentor Bill Ayers is justly infamous).

The ostensible decapitation of the al-Qaida terrorist network (otherwise known as the takedown of Osama bin Laden) has just the sort of pretzel twists that beg for an informational Rosetta stone and an expert to make good use of it who is well-versed in the many arcane languages of political intrigue. The sequence of events, like the characters, words and phrases of an unknown language, have what seems to be a familiar structure. But every translation runs into contradictions that disturb the complacent assumption that we are dealing with familiar terms.



Back chatter is also coming to the fore that suggests that both the timeline and substance of the decision-making process were hardly as straightforward as this story line makes them appear. Did the U.S. government know of bin Laden's whereabouts for weeks or even months? Was there a tussle over the decision to act against bin Laden, one in which considerations of political risk, joined with politically correct concerns about offending Islamic sensibilities to make Obama and his White House associates act the part of timid politicos, rather than intrepid executives with a righteous zeal for justice?



If you had such an intelligence asset, what would drive your decision to liquidate it? Does it serve an intelligence purpose? Is it driven by political considerations? In this case, the story of Obama's intrepid takedown of the terrorist kingpin draws attention away from the rising influence in the Middle East and North Africa of the fanatical Islamic fundamentalist forces that spawned al-Qaida in the first place. It draws attention away from the pressures now being brought to bear against Israel to accept a practicing terror organization (Hamas) as an interlocutor in the so-called Middle East peace process. And of course, it provides at least a temporary reversal of the American people's distrust and loss of confidence in Obama and his faction.

Barton’s Chutzpah: ‘Historian’ Lies to Jon Stewart

People For the American Way’s recent report on David Barton was subtitled, “Religious Right ‘Historian’ Hits the Big Time in Tea Party America.”   Barton has really hit the big time this week, with a profile in the New York Times and an appearance on “The Daily Show,” Jon Stewart’s popular Comedy Central program. Anyone who questions Barton’s facility at manipulating and distorting history should watch him in action, denying reality with a straight face.

In the extended interview available online, Stewart did a good job getting Barton to admit that he doesn’t believe the First Amendment applies to the states, and that he thinks states and localities ought to be able to establish religion. (If you’re a Jewish kid forced to start the day with Christian prayers in your local public school, tough luck. If you don’t like it, move someplace with a Jewish majority.) The good-natured Stewart did not call Barton a liar even when Barton contradicted the facts that Stewart put before him.  
 
RWW will be providing some detailed fact-checking on Barton’s interview, but here’s the big picture:
Barton dramatically downplayed his promotion of his “Christian nation” historical revisionism; he misrepresented his use of Jesus and the Bible to promote right-wing economic policies; and he asserted that he had never had to retract a single thing, which is demonstrably false. Barton also said his critics have never provided documentation of his manipulations, which is laughably untrue. Our recent report cited a number of historians critiquing his claims and linked to very detailed refutations, some of which Stewart asked him about directly. Barton has admitted that a number of alleged quotations from the founders that he used to promote are inaccurate or non-confirmable from original documents.
 
Barton also distorted his use of the Bible to support right-wing economics. When Stewart questioned him about using the Bible that way, Barton suggested that in a particular speech he was simply citing historical documents referencing a 1765 sermon. In fact, Barton has repeatedly claimed a biblical basis for right-wing views on progressive taxation in speeches and broadcasts and on his own website. Among his targets: the capital gains tax, the inheritance tax, minimum wages, and “socialist union kind of stuff.”   His use of the Bible to promote his take on taxes and labor relations is no more trustworthy than his use of historical documents. 
 
Perhaps the scariest claim Barton made, if it were true, is that he secretly edited the nation’s best selling public school textbook but kept his name off of it to avoid controversy. Let’s hope that claim is about as accurate as many others he made on Stewart’s show.

UPDATE: Chris Rodda, who challenges Barton's scholarship by examining the historical documents he says support his claims, has responded to Barton's latest distortions by offering her book, Liars for Jesus, for free as a download.

 

Religious Right Groups And Chamber of Commerce Fail To Block District Court Nominee

Religious Right and pro-corporate groups failed today to block President Obama’s nominee for U.S. District Court in Rhode Island, John McConnell, from receiving an up-or-down vote in the Senate. The Senate invoked cloture on McConnell’s nomination in a 63-33 vote, defeating the filibuster against McConnell. Filibusters against district court judges are extremely rare—only a handful of District Court nominees have ever faced cloture votes, and none have ever been blocked—and many Republicans previously vowed they would never filibuster a judicial nominee.

Today’s vote came after a long wait for McConnell: according to The Providence Journal, the delay caused by the concerted right-wing effort to block McConnell forced Rhode Island’s chief federal judge to “take the unusual step of reassigning more than two dozen civil cases to judges in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.”

Why the tough fight? McConnell faced virulent opposition from the Chamber of Commerce over his role fighting big tobacco companies and lead paint manufacturers. The Chamber and other groups that oppose corporate accountability found allies in the Religious Right groups that decided to fight McConnell as well.

The Conservative Action Project made McConnell a top target of their efforts. The group includes pro-corporate organizations like the 60 Plus Association, National Taxpayers Union, Americans for Limited Government, Citizens United, and American Tax Reform, along with social conservatives such as the Family Research Council, Traditional Values Coalition, Heritage Action, American Values, Liberty Counsel Action, and Eagle Forum. The Conservative Action Project’s Memo to the Movement [PDF] claimed McConnell was unqualified to serve in the judiciary because he was a trial lawyer with a history of challenging big business.

Eagle Forum derided him as a “pro-choice, anti-business, pro-judicial activism nominee” who “has made numerous anti-business statements.” The Family Research Council slammed McConnell for his ties to the Southern Poverty Law Center, one of the country’s most prominent civil rights organizations, and Phillip Jauregui’s Judicial Action Group said that his link to the SPLC and the American Constitution Society shows he “supports organizations who support homosexual marriage and oppose conservative politicians.”

While the Corporate Right and the Religious Right of the McConnell nomination failed, many of these organizations will continue to work together to block other qualified judicial nominees and aggravate the country’s burgeoning judicial vacancy crisis.

Pennsylvania Republican Introduces Amendment To Ban Gay Marriage

Pennsylvania State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe has introduced an amendment to the State Constitution to ban equal marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples. Same-sex marriage in Pennsylvania is already banned by statute, and the amendment would need to win the approval of the state legislature in two consecutive terms, which would result in a popular referendum. Republicans currently control both chambers of the Pennsylvania legislature and Metcalfe chairs the House State Government Committee. A committee in the Minnesota State House passed a similar amendment earlier today.

A longtime opponent of gay rights who opposed a resolution condemning domestic violence because he said it was part of the “homosexual agenda,” Metcalfe is one of the most fervently right-wing lawmakers in Pennsylvania. He founded and chairs State Legislators for Legal Immigration, which seeks to overturn the right of birthright citizenship, and also introduced legislation to forcefully undercut the right of workers to form a union. I addition, he introduced a “Birther bill” in Pennsylvania, attacked veterans who protested climate change as “traitors,” and voted against an honorary resolution for a Pennsylvania Muslim group because “Muslims do not recognize Jesus Christ as God.”

He said in a statement that Obama, “bureaucrats” and “special interests” forced him to introduce an amendment:

"Pennsylvania House State Government Committee Chairman State Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) announced today the introduction of a Constitutional amendment to allow the citizens of Pennsylvania to precisely define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

“The institution of traditional marriage has never been under greater attack,” said Metcalfe. “This not only includes the special interests who want to permanently redefine marriage, but unfortunately the executive branch and the federal Department of Justice who have blatantly and recklessly refused to uphold and defend its Constitutionality. Once again, it falls to the responsibility of state lawmakers to restore the rule of law and carry out the will of the people.”



To date, voters in 30 states have ratified similar amendments to their state constitutions.

“Pennsylvania voters deserve the opportunity to do the same,” Metcalfe said. “The definition of marriage as ‘the union of one man and one woman,’ defended and upheld by this legislation, is the traditional definition of marriage that has been recognized and accepted throughout history and the world for centuries. It should not be the Obama administration’s Department of Justice and the executive branch bureaucrats that decide this critical issue for our Commonwealth, but rather the voters.”

Creationists Warn That Teaching Evolution Leads To "Homosexual Indoctrination"

The Creation Studies Institute is warning members that, like the Nazis, gay-rights activists are using public schools to indoctrinate students. While many Religious Right groups have alleged that safe-school and anti-bullying programs lead to “homosexual indoctrination,” the Creationist Studies Institute claims that the “gay agenda” has taken over schools because schools have “fully embraced Darwinian Evolution.”

“Indeed, the rampant teaching of evolution in our schools that is effectively undermining belief in God and absolute moral standards is not only creating an atmosphere of ‘tolerance’ for homosexuality, but for just about anything,” writes Tom DeRosa, the organization’s founder and executive director, who adds: “Of course, in a purely evolutionary world, homosexuals would naturally be bred out of existence.” DeRosa goes on to compare homosexuality with polygamy and pedophilia, and asks members to purchase Focus on the Family’s Secure Daughters, Confident Sons booklet:

Those who hold godless ideologies have long understood that the best way to transform societies and change the way people traditionally think is by indoctrinating children from the earliest stages of education. In the last century, this methodology was effectively employed by those who held the atheistic ideologies of Nazism in Germany and Communism in countries such as the Soviet Union, where the state assumed total control of the educational system—even to the extent of turning children against parents. Of course, both of these worldviews fully embraced Darwinian evolution as a way to justify their actions and nullify the beliefs of their largely Christian populations. While U.S. federal government does not have that kind of authority in our school system (not yet, anyway), is it any wonder that those who lack a biblical worldview in our country, including those with a gay agenda, have seized upon our primary schools as the main vehicle of transforming our nation more to their liking?

In America, the adoption of evolution in our schools has paved the way for the introduction of the gay agenda. Those pushing it understand that nothing will more thoroughly and quickly undermine the traditional biblical foundations of our country than the normalization of homosexuality among our nation’s school children, regardless of their parents’ beliefs. Currently, under the banner of “tolerance” or “equal rights,” states like Massachusetts, New York, California, Wisconsin and Minnesota are actively implementing a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) curriculum in their public schools. But those behind the effort to legitimize LGBT lifestyles won’t be content until this kind of curricula is taught in all of our nation’s schools. So what is being taught, you might ask, that should concern those of us in the creationist community?



From the patriarchal days of Sodom and Gomorrah to the Law of Moses to the New Testament, God’s Word consistently declares that homosexuality is sin and warns of the condemnation it brings to the individuals who practice it and to societies that promote it. Indeed, the rampant teaching of evolution in our schools that is effectively undermining belief in God and absolute moral standards is not only creating an atmosphere of “tolerance” for homosexuality, but for just about anything. As the truism goes, “Without God, everything is permissible.” So, in reality, there’s nothing to prevent the same rationale being used today to justify homosexuality and homosexual marriage from being used tomorrow to sanction polygamy or pedophilia or… As one very honest evolutionist wrote a while back (a piece that quickly disappeared from public view), if evolution is true, then rape is a very valid and/or efficient way for a man to spread his genes. After all, why not? It’s the survival of the fittest. Of course, in a purely evolutionary world, homosexuals would naturally be bred out of existence, as well. But you won’t hear that from pro-evolution advocates.

Right Wing Leftovers

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/19/11

Michele Bachmann

Book: Considering a proposal to write her memoirs (AP, 4/18).

South Carolina: Rally in South Carolina a bust (CBS News, 4/18). 

Birther: Continues to float birther conspiracy on Fox News (The Atlantic, 4/18). 

Budget: Falsely claims that the top 1% pay 40% of taxes (PolitiFact, 4/13). 

Haley Barbour

South Carolina: Wins Charleston County GOP straw poll (The State Column, 4/18). 

New Hampshire: Takes two-day swing in New Hampshire (Boston Globe, 4/15). 

Mike Huckabee

South Carolina: Meets with supporters from the 2008 campaign (RCP, 4/18). 

Iowa: Volunteers from 2008 bid work to build new campaign (The Ticket, 4/15). 

Jon Huntsman

South Carolina: Organizes campaign in the Palmetto State (CNN, 4/18).

Obama: Conservative website features laudatory letters from Huntsman to Obama (Daily Caller, 4/15).

Roy Moore

2012: Forms presidential exploratory committee (AP, 4/18). 

Religious Right: Travels around Iowa with staffer from the far-right The Family Leader (Des Moines Register, 4/18). 

Sarah Palin

PAC: Launches new website for leadership pac (The Caucus, 4/18). 

Tea Party: Addresses small rally for Koch front group in Wisconsin (TPM, 4/16). 

Ron Paul

South Carolina: Tops the field in the Lexington County straw poll (CNN, 4/16). 

2012: Opens fundraising account for potential presidential bid (Politico, 4/14). 

Tim Pawlenty

Tea Party: Keynotes tea party rally in Boston, slams health care reform (Boston Globe, 4/16). 

Budget: Criticizes compromise budget deal (The Fix, 4/13). 

Mitt Romney

Florida: Leads in early poll of Sunshine State Republicans (Taunton Daily Gazette, 4/17). 

Fundraising: Benefits from network of state leadership PACs (Boston Globe, 4/15). 

Donald Trump

GOP: Presidential campaign gains increasing interest among Republican activists (AP, 4/19). 

Tea Party: Addresses Tea Party rally with Florida Congressman Allen West (The State Column, 4/17). 

Poll: Leads other likely candidates in poll of Republicans nationwide (WSJ, 4/15). 

Rick Santorum

Campaign: Rejects pro-union line of Langston Hughes he used as a campaign motto (The Guardian, 4/18). 

Equality: Supports reinstating Don't Ask Don't Tell policy (Think Progress, 4/18). 

Religious Right: Plans to join The Family Leader's Iowa presidential lecture tour (RWW, 4/18).

New Hampshire: Plays in mini golf tournament in Granite State tour (Foster's Daily Democrat, 4/17).

Santorum To Join The Family Leader In Iowa

Bob Vander Plaats’s The Family Leader just announced that Rick Santorum will join them for two events in early May. The Family Leader is an obsessive, militantly anti-gay organization that wants to remove the entire Iowa Supreme Court for ruling in favor of marriage equality. Already, likely presidential candidates Michele Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty and Ron Paul have joined Vander Plaats for his religious right group’s Presidential Lecture Series, and Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain plan to address the group this summer:

The goal of the Presidential Lecture Series is to provide an educational platform whereby Iowans can learn about the pro-family vision of national leaders.

Come and hear the pro-family lecture of former Senator Rick Santorum on Monday, May 2, 2011.

University of Iowa Iowa Memorial Union - Ballroom 125 N. Madison St., Iowa City, IA 52242 9:00 AM

Pella Christian High School, 300 Eagle Lane, Pella, IA 50219 Vermeer Auditorium 12:30 PM

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann Dordt College, 498 4th Ave. NE, Sioux Center, IA 51250 Campus Center 4:30 PM

Come hear the following leaders on these upcoming dates:
June 6 - Herman Cain
July 11 - Speaker Newt Gingrich
August - TBA
September - TBA
October - TBA

Knight: Gay Staffers Control Congress And Washington DC

At the Freedom Federation’s The Awakening 2011, right-wing activists unleashed their venom at the gay community and supporters of gay rights at the “Religious Liberty and the LGBT Agenda” panel. Robert Knight, a columnist for the Washington Times who is the executive director of the far-right American Civil Rights Union, maintained that gay congressional staffers represent one of the most difficult hurdles for opponents of LGBT equality. According to Knight, who has also worked for a wide range of conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation, Family Research Council, Concerned Women for America, Media Research Center, and Coral Ridge Ministries, gay staffers have “veto power” over legislation because they “work all hours and, I think, tend not to have family lives.” He went on to say that the “gay subculture” in D.C. “intimidates the overriding Washington culture” and that opponents of gay rights are “undermined from within”:

Scott Lively Rails Against "Sodomites," Claims Gay Rights Are The "Antithesis" Of Human Rights

As Kyle noted in March, Religious Right activist Scott Lively is keeping up his attacks on gays despite a lengthy Boston Globe profile on how Lively is “toning down his antigay rhetoric.” Writing for his organization Defend the Family International, Lively discusses how his review of historic religious and political documents has corroborated his fierce opposition to gay-rights, and goes on to argue that gay-rights is simply “the ‘right’ to spread sexual disease and dysfunction” and is the “antithesis of genuine human rights.”

Reading these documents one is struck by the continuity of several basic themes, central among them the protection religious freedom and family values. Equally striking in today’s context is the total absence of protection for homosexual practice or identity. Rather, we find express condemnation of homosexuality in several documents, and implied hostility to it through the remainder. Indeed, the most reasonable assumption of human rights jurisprudence is that so called “gay rights” are the antithesis of genuine human rights because they both undermine the sexual order on which family values depend, and contradict the fundamental tenets of the major world religions.



Consider the magnitude of what our generation is witnessing. Neither the four millennia of legal precedent, nor the opinions of the vast majority of the people of the world, nor the power or the authority of the worlds religions across the globe, nor the painful lessons of secular history of the consequences of sexual perversion to civilizations have proved sufficient to stop a relatively tiny group of sodomites from taking the reins of Western power and creating new rights for themselves at the world’s expense.

It is insanity, and I am afraid that it may be terminal. When the “right” to spread sexual disease and dysfunction supersedes the right to discourage such things in the courtrooms and legislatures of the world’s ruling powers their end is likely near.

Just as Lively warned that a “relatively tiny group of sodomites” is attempting to take “the reins of Western power,” he told OneNewsNow that gay-rights activists in California have “consolidated power entirely” in order to accomplish the “overthrow of the biblical model of family”:

"They're really the driving force behind all the different elements of what we call 'the culture war,'" he shares. "They haven't been visible in doing this, but they've been the driving force -- because their essential goal as a movement is the overthrow of the biblical model of family."

Lively explains that the city of San Francisco has a high concentration of homosexual power, and the city has taken direct action against the Catholic Church and against businesses that do not support homosexuality. He expects the same radical agendas to be prevalent throughout the state in the near future.

He points out that during the signature collection process for Proposition 8 -- a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman -- those who penned their support for the initiative were openly targeted. "They posted [the names of supporters] on the Internet," he exclaims. "They encouraged all their activists to go after those people -- and that's before they even have consolidated power entirely."

Right Wing Round-Up

Newcombe: Taking Prayer Out Of Schools Will Make America Akin To Nazi Germany

Jerry Newcombe of Coral Ridge Ministries appeared on WallBuilders Live, the radio program of right-wing pseudo historian David Barton, to promote his new book about how the Constitution was supposedly shaped by the Bible. Speaking to Barton’s co-host Rick Green, Newcombe claimed that the goal of organizations such as People For the American Way, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Freedom From Religion Foundation is to arrest and imprison people who pray in public. He points to D. James Kennedy, the founder of Coral Ridge Ministries, to argue that without prayer in schools, America will go down the road of Nazi Germany.

Newcombe: I think about that statement from George Washington, clearly in the context when he’s talking about Christianity when he uses the word ‘religion,’ and he says, what, of all that habits and dispositions which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. He goes, in vain would that person be able to call himself a patriot who in anyway would subvert those great pillars of human happiness. So in other words, Washington was saying that it’s unpatriotic to undue these pillars.

Well that is exactly what these groups like the ACLU and People For the American Way, and so forth, with all their lawsuits, Freedom From Religion Foundation, whatever, with all their lawsuits. ‘Oh my goodness, this person said a prayer, a principal, oh heavens!’ Not only fire them but send them to prison, there have actually been attempts where they actually try to put people in prison for saying a prayer because they’re a public official.

Green: And it’s just as dangerous I think, especially in this environment with the Tea Party and everything and everybody’s getting involved and studying the constitution and whatnot, but there’s a strong libertarian bent that also leaves out religion and morality and doesn’t want God to come back into the equation, and I’m somewhat libertarian in many ways, but look, Washington said you cannot be a patriot and leave those things out so don’t leave that out. Don’t go to this, this kind of conservative version of the ACLU where we don’t want God in the equation at all, we just don’t want the government spending money, because that’s just as dangerous, isn’t it?

Newcombe: Well I don’t know if it’s just as dangerous, yeah, in the long run, yes, it is, in the long run it is. In fact, as D. James Kennedy once pointed out, in 1935, what was the most educated nation on earth? The answer was Germany. But that didn’t prevent Auschwitz from taking place. So there is such a thing as education, where if it’s devoid of God, it is dangerous.

FRC Super PAC To Bolster Right-Wing Wisconsin Justice

As part of the Religious Right’s burgeoning anti-union campaign, The Family Research Council’s Super PAC is entering the fight in Wisconsin in the contested Supreme Court race. FRC president Tony Perkins showed his support for the state’s embattled governor Scott Walker, tweeting, “Pro-family voters should celebrate WI victory b/c public & private sector union bosses have marched lock-step w/liberal social agenda.” Walker’s chief ally on the state Supreme Court, David Prosser, is now facing a serious challenge in the judicial election on April 5th. Justice Prosser, a former Republican state assemblyman, is a leading conservative on the court and called the left-leaning chief justice a “total bitch” and told her, “I will destroy you.”

The FRC’s Faith Family Freedom Fund now plans to air radio ads on thirty-four stations defending Prosser and criticizing his main rival, JoAnne Kloppenburg, along with “liberal special interests.” FRC says that the hyper-partisan Prosser is a vote to “keep politics out of the Supreme Court”:

"Union bosses want to use the Wisconsin Supreme Court to advance their liberal agenda and also recall any elected official who stands in their way. Faith Family Freedom Fund will advocate for these duly elected officials and work to protect the courts from judicial activism," said Connie Mackey, chairwoman of the Faith Family Freedom Fund.

The ad script follows:

"What is happening in this Supreme Court election is outrageous. Liberal special interests want to turn this election into a referendum on the governor. But what's really at stake is what kind of Justice should be on the Wisconsin or any Supreme Court?

"Joanne Kloppenburg does not have the experience. Liberals see her as their best hope to advance their political agenda and strike down laws passed by a legislature and governor elected by the people. Justice David Prosser has the experience that Wisconsin needs in these turbulent times. His experience and qualifications aren't matched by his opponent.

"He believes in judicial restraint and deserves another term on the Supreme Court. A vote for Prosser is a vote to keep politics out of the Supreme Court. Send a message on Election Day - April 5th. Vote for Judicial Restraint. Vote for Justice David Prosser."

Tea Party Group Warns of White "Extinction" In America

Tea Party Nation is a major (for-profit) Tea Party organization that gained prominence after its convention last year hosted Republican leaders like Sarah Palin and Tom Tancredo, along with Religious Right figures Roy Moore and Rick Scarborough. TPN’s President Judson Phillips previously denounced the “Marxist” Methodist Church and suggested that President Obama’s campaign was funded by Hamas and China.

This morning, Tea Party Nation sent out an email to its members with the headline “Destroy the Family, You Destroy the Country!” from an article by Dr. Rich Swier, a contributing editor to the anti-Muslim group Family Security Matters. Writing for Tea Part Nation, Swier says that “The title of this column is a direct quote from Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, the first leader of the former Soviet Union. Lenin's vision was for the state (Communism) to replace the family as the provider of all things necessary for life and happiness. What Lenin did not foresee was his political policies leading to the eventual extinction of Russian civilization.” Swier goes on to lament the falling birthrate of native-born Americans compared to immigrants, and warns that “American culture” will soon perish since the “White Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP) population is headed for extinction”:

What is keeping America's fertility rate up are immigrants - both legal and illegal.

There are those in America who are continuously attacking the family, bent on redefining marriage and have established anti-family government programs. This has led to downward pressure on our national total fertility rate. All of these actions are done in the name of various causes such as: reducing unwanted pregnancies, delaying child bearing to further career goals and even promoting childlessness and promoting adoption as a better option.

Child bearing has become something distasteful to many women, an unwanted and painful experience to be avoided rather than embraced.

All of these programs, ideals and ideologies are doing one thing and one thing only - reducing America core TFR to the point of no return. The White Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP) population in America is headed for extinction and with it our economy, well-being and survival as a uniquely America culture.

This county is dying not because it is aging, it is dying because of infertility as public policy.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 3/29/11

Michele Bachmann

Fundraising: Embellishes fundraising skills (WaPo, 3/28).

Religious Right: Slams proposed “social issues truce” at conservative forum (Des Moines Register, 3/26).

Iowa: Names State Senator and prominent Birther the director of her Iowa campaign (MoJo, 3/25).

Haley Barbour

Mississippi: State lawmakers criticize Barbour’s out of state traveling that caused him to miss budget deadline (The State Column, 3/28).

Obama: Claims President sees Americans as “too stupid to take care of ourselves” (ABC News, 3/26).

Equality: Calls to reinstate Don’t Ask Don’t Tell in order to prevent an “amorous mindset” among soldiers (RWW, 3/25).

Herman Cain

Equality: Says he will not appoint any Muslims if elected President (ThinkProgress, 3/26).

Race: Declares he “won’t stay on the Democrat plantation” (Politico, 3/26).

Newt Gingrich

Background: Believes it wasn’t hypocritical to impeach Clinton for affair while he was having an affair himself (CBS News, 3/28).

Religious Right: Tells John Hagee’s church he fears America as “a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists” (CNN, 3/28).

Equality: Discusses with Bryan Fischer how he will “slow down the homosexual agenda” (RWW, 3/25).

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: Calls on activists to become “spiritual warriors” in social issues fight (RWW, 3/25).

Poll: Leads all other Republican candidates in national poll (TPM, 3/25).

Jon Huntsman

PAC: Horizon PAC hires more staffers and readies for potential campaign (Politico, 3/28).

Background: Staffers looks to distance Huntsman from Obama (AP, 3/26).

Roy Moore

2012: Alabama justice best known for Ten Commandments controversy plans to announce presidential bid in April (CBS News, 3/28).

Equality: Addressed Iowa opponents of marriage equality law at rally (Des Moines Register, 3/15).

Sarah Palin

Poll: Loses support in survey of Republicans nationwide (Reuters, 3/25).

Media: Refers to Bill Maher as an “annoying little mosquito” (Politico, 3/24).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Focuses Iowa campaign on attracting support of the Religious Right (RCP, 3/28).

Fundraising: Announces finance team led by former McCain fundraiser (WaPo, 3/28).

Mitt Romney

Campaign: Hires former Bush Administration staffer as policy advisor (Politico, 3/28).

Fundraising: Hopes to raise $50 million for the primary campaign (The Caucus, 3/25).

Rick Santorum

Family: Cancels campaign appearances to attend to ill daughter (CBN News, 3/28).

New Hampshire: Scheduled to appear at “first town hall meeting” of 2012 primary (Union Leader, 3/22).

Pro-Voucher Group Working Against Recall of Union-Busting Wisconsin Republicans

An organization that backs private school vouchers is campaigning against the recall of the eight Republican Wisconsin senators who backed Governor Scott Walker’s anti-union legislation. The so-called American Federation for Children (AFC) is an ardent supporter of the voucher scheme in Milwaukee, the unsuccessful voucher program which Walker and his GOP allies want to export to other parts of the state as part of bolstering the Republicans’ attacks on public schools and teachers.

Listen to their robocall defending GOP Senator Sheila Harsdorf:

At the same time that Walker and the Republicans proposed a massive $834 million cut to public schools, endangering the state’s esteemed public education system, they seek to spend more taxpayer money on a wasteful voucher program that has been unable to improve the education of Milwaukee students. A comprehensive study in 2009 found “no overall statistically significant difference between [voucher school] and [public school] student achievement growth in either math or reading one year after they were carefully matched to each other,” and that fourth graders in the voucher program were actually performing worse than comparable public school students.

While the private school voucher scheme did nothing to improve education, it did funnel taxpayer dollars to religious schools: of the 120 schools receiving vouchers examined in the study, 95 were religious and 7 operate within a religious tradition.

Renowned education scholar Diane Ravitch, once a proponent of the so-called “school choice” movement, told OnMilwaukee.com that the voucher program “has not worked”:

Milwaukee is indeed the nation's laboratory for assessing the value of school choice. The advocates of school choice predicted that academic performance in choice schools would not only soar, but that the competitive pressure would cause achievement in the regular district schools to improve. None of this has happened. The latest studies show that students in voucher schools and in charter schools do not perform any differently from those in the regular public schools.



"Reformers" in Milwaukee have been pursuing strategies that we now know are ineffective. The more time and resources devoted to ineffective strategies, the less attention there is to finding useful improvements. Choice got the support of foundations and business leaders, but it has not worked.

Even the state schools superintendent Tom Evers agreed that “choice schools have proven to be no more effective and in some cases less effective than Milwaukee Public Schools.”

But organizations like the AFC ignore and dismiss the clear findings that the Milwaukee voucher program is a wrongheaded and ill-designed effort to improve education, and instead want to expand the program to more school districts and tear down the public education system. Now, they want to make sure that Republican legislators keep their jobs and continue to support vouchers and bust unions representing public school teachers.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 3/22/11

Michele Bachmann

History: New Hampshire politicians take jabs at Bachmann's history blunder (Politico, 3/17).

2012: Deep roots in conservative movement bolster her campaign prospects (TNR, 3/17).

Haley Barbour

Campaign: Expanding campaign and presence in early state (NYT, 3/22).

Mississippi: State taxpayers paid for $300,000 of his out-of-state traveling costs (Clarion Ledger, 3/21).

Foreign Affairs: Calls for reducing troop level in Afghanistan (CBS News, 3/16).

Mitch Daniels

Book: Signs book deal with conservative publisher (AP, 3/21).

2012: Wife raises doubts about potential run (Indianapolis Star, 3/20).

Newt Gingrich

New Hampshire: Schedules speeches and meetings in the Granite State (Union Leader, 3/21).

Foreign Affairs: Claims President Obama "does not even know who his enemies are" (Union Leader, 3/20).

Obama: Says President is busy on ESPN instead of handling crises (LA Times, 3/18).

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: Says he wants world leaders to have a "biblical worldview" (RWW, 3/21). 

Anti-Choice: Lauds anti-choice leaders on Fox News show (News Hounds, 3/21).

Fox News: Favorite candidate of Fox News viewers (HuffPo, 3/18).

Sarah Palin

Foreign Affairs: Plans to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu during tour of Israel after visiting India (Forward, 3/21).

Energy: Alaska abandons much of Palin's energy agenda (NYT, 3/17).

Campaign: Top aide profiled by Los Angeles Times (LA Times, 3/16).

Ron Paul

Foreign Affairs: Slams US involvement in no-fly zone as "unconstitutional" (Raw Story, 3/21).

GOP: Wins California GOP convention straw poll (Sacramento Bee, 3/20).

Economy: Pushes elimination of the Federal Reserve (Reuters, 3/17).

Tim Pawlenty

2012: Announces formation of exploratory committee (Star Tribune, 3/21).

Campaign: Adopts Southern accent in stump speech (Minnesota Public Radio, 3/18).

Tea Party: Set to address New Hampshire Tea Party rally (Think Progress, 3/17).

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Allies downplay impact of Massachusetts health care reform law on primary (The Hill, 3/17).

Campaign: Recruits fundraisers close to former President Bush (Bloomberg, 3/17).

Donald Trump

Foreign Affairs: Brags to Fox News that he "screwed" Qaddafi on land deal (Fox News, 3/21).

New Hampshire: Scheduled to address political forum in New Hampshire (Boston Herald, 3/16).

Rick Santorum

Foreign Affairs: Derides Obama for turning the US into "the military of the UN" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 3/18).

Health Care: Calls Mitt Romney's health care reform law a "failure" (The State Column, 3/18).

Religious Right: Tells far-right Catholic group that he was "appalled" by JFK's "radical" support of the separation of church and state (Boston Globe, 3/15).

CWA: Democrats Imposing “Homosexual Quotas” for Judiciary

After accusing President Obama of acting like a “despot” over his support of gay-rights, Mario Diaz of Concerned Women for America now claims that Democratic Senators are introducing “homosexual quotas” for judicial nominations. Currently there are two openly gay federal judges, both are women nominated by President Clinton.

Diaz says that Democrats care more about judges’ “sexual preferences” than their judicial philosophies, but at the same time maintains that Democrats only want judges who have a “radically liberal philosophy.” Since Obama has nominated J. Paul Oetken, who would be the first openly gay male federal judge, Diaz thinks the Democrats’ end-game is to “force men dressed as women down your throat.” Diaz writes:

Liberal Democrats have formed a strong allegiance with the lesbian, "gay," bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. President Obama is doing everything in his power to promote their agenda throughout all areas of government, and the judiciary is no exception.

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., said recently he "was shocked to learn there were no openly gay male judges on the entire federal bench," so liberals have set out on a crusade to rectify that, effectively implementing homosexual quotas.

I say "homosexual quotas," because that is the extent of their "commitment" for now. Although they talk about the LGBT community, they are not quite prepared to force men dressed as women down your throat ... yet.



Meanwhile, undeterred by his embarrassing episode with Alter, Schumer continued his search for a new "openly homosexual" candidate of his own. In this instance, otherwise qualified candidates need not apply. If you were not "gay," you did not meet his criteria. So he searched until he finally found someone. He recommended, and the president nominated, Paul Oetken (an even more in-your-face homosexual activist) to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Oetken's resumé includes a brief for the National Lesbian and Gay Law Association that helped bring about the Lawrence v. Texas sodomy decision at the Supreme Court. Schumer noted that Oetken is "a strong advocate" for the LGBT community and felt he needed to mention his work for the radically liberal Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union. He has also written in favor of physician-assisted suicide.

Apparently, those are all great qualifications for a judgeship in the minds of Sen. Schumer and President Obama. Oetken's hearing was on March 16. Seeing the way liberal Democrats treat judicial nominations, one can understand why they are pushing for a process that would exclude a nominee's judicial philosophy from consideration. Apparently, the issue of judicial philosophy pales against the far weightier consideration of the nominee's sexual preferences.

Our Country Deserves Better PAC Launches “The Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama”

The right-wing California political action committee which runs the Tea Party Express and is closely tied to Move America Forward is launching yet another group: the Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama. Both the Tea Party Express and Move America Forward are managed by Sal Russo of Our Country Deserves Better PAC, and the New York Times found that the majority of the Tea Party Express’s funds were “paid to Mr. Russo’s political consulting firm or to one controlled by his wife.”

Seeing that running a political front group is a profitable enterprise, Our Country Deserves Better PAC is kicking off The Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama with the “Political Event of the Year,” a fundraiser featuring failed Alaska senate candidate Joe Miller, notorious Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, and Joe Wurzelbacher, better known as Joe the Plumber. Another unsuccessful tea party senate candidate, Sharron Angle, who recently announced her campaign for an open House seat, is also scheduled to attend. Apparently, the fundraiser is celebrating two of 2010’s most radical candidates who went down to embarrassing defeats.

The Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama is now on the air in Wisconsin with an ad bashing “union thugs” and “Obama’s union goons,” sending a “thank you” to Governor Scott Walker and Republican state legislators for passing union-busting legislation.

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Brian Tashman, Tuesday 08/16/2011, 1:16pm
Perennial North Carolina Republican congressional candidate Vernon Robinson is asking for money for his campaign to readers of the far-right website WorldNetDaily. Robinson is best known for his Twilight Zone ad, which he ran during his unsuccessful campaign against Democratic Rep. Brad Miller. While he failed in his bid for Congress, Robinson endeared himself to Republicans across the country. Now, Robinson is running in the 8th congressional district against Rep. Larry Kissell and in a fundraising email blasts President Barack Obama for “hanging out with terrorists” and “... MORE
Peter Montgomery, Tuesday 08/09/2011, 12:13pm
Casual viewers of “The Response,” including some political reporters who don’t pay a lot of attention to the Religious Right, may have watched Texas Governor Rick Perry’s prayer rally on Saturday and wondered what all the fuss was about.  Most of the time was taken up with prayer and praise music.  Few of the speakers seemed overtly political.  Nobody used the occasion to endorse Perry’s pending presidential bid. But context is everything, and the context for this event was remarkable: a governor launching a presidential bid by teaming up with... MORE
Kyle Mantyla, Thursday 08/04/2011, 11:33am
As we mentioned yesterday, Tim Pawlenty, Rick Santorum, and Michele Bachmann will be joining FRC, the National Organization for Marriage and the Susan B. Anthony List for a ""Values Voter Bus Tour" through Iowa. In kicking off the event, NOM has announced that Santorum, Bachmann, and Mitt Romney have all signed a five-point "Marriage Pledge" [PDF] that includes a promise to establish a "presidential commission" to "investigate harassment of traditional marriage supporters": One, support sending a federal constitutional amendment defining... MORE
Brian Tashman, Friday 07/29/2011, 11:50am
Selective reading of material to support presupposed right-wing views is David Barton’s forte, so it comes as no surprise that the pseudo-historian is using a shoddy poll on same-sex marriage by an ultraconservative organization to claim that very few Americans support marriage equality. On WallBuilders Live yesterday, Barton and co-host Rick Green hosted Austin Nimocks of the Alliance Defense Fund to discuss their opposition to equal marriage rights for gays and lesbians. Barton and Green ended the interview by discussing the ADF poll which claimed that 62% of Americans were against... MORE
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 07/26/2011, 5:22pm
Earlier this summer presidential candidate Michele Bachmann raised eyebrows with her incoherent argument that she supports the Federal Marriage Amendment, which would ban same-sex marriage nationwide, while agreeing that states have a right to have their own laws on marriage under the 10th Amendment. Now, Texas governor and potential presidential candidate Rick Perry appears to be taking a similarly confusing and contradictory view on states’ rights. When asked about New York’s new marriage equality law, Perry said it was “fine” with him because of the 10th... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 07/25/2011, 12:46pm
Rep. Peter King (R-NY recently announced the third in his series of hearings on the “radicalization of the Muslim-American community”—the GOP’s premier venue for demonstrating the kinds of attacks highlighted in PFAW’s latest Right Wing Watch: In Focus report “The Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism.” As part of his hearings, King plans to call Thomas Joscelyn of the staunchly neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies as a witness. Joscelyn, from his platform as a writer for the neoconservative Weekly Standard, has questioned the... MORE
Brian Tashman, Monday 07/25/2011, 10:52am
As we learn more about the right-wing terrorist in Norway whose deadly attacks left over ninety people dead, the anti-Muslim blog FrontPageMag led by conservative activist David Horowitz is arguing that the real victims of the attacks are…anti-Muslim bloggers. Anders Behring Breivik routinely frequented popular anti-Muslim blogs and cited American and European anti-Muslim figures in his “manifesto” against progressives, minorities and “cultural Marxism.” Mark Tapson of FrontPageMag claims that Breivik’s actions did great damage to the cause of “... MORE