Saturday, October 10, 2009

Why Conservatives Are Really Afraid of a Black President? Psychologists Conclude: the GOP is Nuts! They Really Are A Menace To America.

Why Conservatives Are Really Afraid of a Black President? Psychologists Conclude: the GOP is Nuts! They Really Are A Menace To America.

No hyperbole involved; these people are a danger to us and themselves!

Psychologists Conclude: The GOP Is Nuts!


The GOP is not a political party; it's a crime syndicate! It is also described as an irrational, kooky cult that cannot deal with facts or logic but is freaked out by 'scary images', 'boogiemen' and vague or even non-existent threats like terrorists, commies, liberals or normal sex.

"Conservatives respond instinctually [sic], not rationally, to scary images, "facts," and institutions. Whether this is innate and biological or cultural seems still up in the air. Democrats can't win with logical arguments or even appeals to the innate rightness of concepts like "diversity" and "tolerance," because those aren't considered essentially good and important by the voters they're trying to appeal to. This does suggest that an appeal to old New Deal institutional concepts like the Welfare State might actually be effective, if they're wrapped in the flag and a sense of duty. Also scientists still consider the majority of Americans to be like a fascinating exotic backwards tribe and the fucking country is doomed."

Scientists Explain Why People Vote For Republicans

Much of this new research is consistent with Carl Jung's 'The Undiscovered Self" in which he said that about one third of any population is certifiably psychopathic.

Psychopaths are often defined by their 'utter lack of empathy', a phrase used by Dr. Gustav Gilbert who was given the task of keeping Nazi war criminals alive until they could be hanged.

Conservatives Are Scared A Lot

Rice University Political Scientist John Alford published some research in the creatively named journal Science about a possible biological basis to liberalism and conservatism. Basically, "46 mostly white Midwesterners who self-identified as having strong political beliefs" were shown "threatening images" ("a large spider on someone's face, a bloodied person and maggot-filled wound"). The conservatives were more scared, of all of the images. Or, as Newsweek puts it, "illegal immigrants may = spiders = gay marriages = maggot-filled wounds = abortion rights = bloodied faces. " Liberals were not sensitive to the scary images. Which means they're [conservatives are] biologically inferior, because they'd die if a gay spider tried to abort their faces to death.

Scientists Explain Why People Vote For Republicans

Republicans are more sensitive to the 'scary images' which they equate with political issues -immigration, gun control, gay marriage, abortion rights and pacifism. As a result, the 'conservative mentality' is more likely to support greater levels of military spending, warrantless searches, violations of Constitutional rights and/or protections. Conservatives readily believed the pretext for war on Iraq: WMD. None were found yet many still believe the lie.

The rise of Ronald Reagan, a comforting, 'grandfather figure', confirmed this principle on a grand scale. It was a Republican, interviewed on the floor of the GOP national convention in Houston in 1992, who gave the game away: "He [Reagan] made us feel good about ourselves'. They were quite right. Reagan, indeed, made them 'feel good' about being greedy, bigoted, selfish and self-centered, and psychopathic.

It was shortly thereafter, as I recall, that Stanford University released its study indicating that conservatives, the GOP in particular, have more and more terrifying nightmares and night terrors than do normal folk. Nightmares are believed to be the manifestation in dreams of one's fears and irrational anxieties. [Freud,
The Interpretation of Dreams]

John Dean's
Conservatives Without Consciences, inspired by some very serious research, asserts that the conservative mind-set is characterized by the recurring qualities of 'the unbridled viciousness toward those daring to disagree with them' as well as by big business favoritism that has cost taxpayers billions. Dean's book is inspired by other studies identifying an 'authoritarian, conservative mindset', specifically Robert D. Hare's now-standard text on psychopaths, Without Conscience of 1993.

As I have charged, this 'type' is challenged to make valid inferences from premises. Observations by professional psychologists and psychiatrists repeatedly confirm my allegations that 'psychopathic' Republicans work backward from conclusions to a premises. This mentality may be expected to deny science, evolution, or pragmatic approaches of any type. This mentality may be expected to support wars of aggression against Iraq and elsewhere and for all the wrong reasons. This group has embraced or has inherited from authoritarian parents an ideology into which it will 'shoe horn' the evidence of science, experiment or statistics. Anything not conforming is discounted.

This group will never admit its failures; it will justify worse atrocities to cover up past mistakes. It is a moral and psychological black hole. The American Psychiatric Association's 'Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders' description of antisocial and narcissistic personality disorders, for example, provides a diagnostic context for behaviors that Dean describes as characteristic of "social dominants" and "double highs." Anti-socials, for instance, "show little remorse for the consequences of their acts.... They may be indifferent to, or provide a superficial rationalization for, having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from someone (e.g., 'life's unfair,' 'losers deserve to lose,' or 'he had it coming anyway')... They may believe that everyone is out to 'help number one' and that one should stop at nothing to avoid being pushed around." Conservative defenses of George W. Bush were most often of these types.

Conservatives were often encouraged to believe and overtly told that Iraq was somehow involved in the events of 911. If a survey were conducted now, I suspect that about half the GOP 'base' still believes Iraq had something to do with 911. Some will still repeat the WMD lie despite the facts that proved Bush a liar.

How Bush Got Away With It: Conservatives Refuse To Believe Facts

The conservative mentality will often label a 'fact' a 'theory' if it happens to be one they don't like. But conservatives are not opposed to all theories. In fact, the GOP still embraces the kookiest and least believable of all theories --Bush's official conspiracy theory of 911, more full of holes than Swiss cheese.

Evolution, on the other hand, is not believed because it is seen as a threat. The most prominent, text-book example is Sarah Palin, the poster bimbo for idiocy! Palin believes early man walked with Dinosaurs less then 10,000 years ago. I propose that we put Palin and Richard Dawkins, avowed atheist and evolutionist, in the same room!

Roll The Cameras!

We've just produced a hot new series.

I think there is a certain justified irritation with young-earth creationists who believe that the world is less than 10,000 years old. Those are the people that I'm really talking about. I do sometimes accuse people of ignorance, but that is not intended to be an insult. I'm ignorant of lots of things. Ignorance is something that can be remedied by education. And that's what I'm trying to do.

--Richared Dawkins, Darwin's Rottweiller: Richard Dawkins' Tense Relationship with those who believe in God

Sarah Palin's only rival in idiocy is Joe, the Plumber! Alaska leads the US in global warming! As for Polar Bears --Alaska's entire population of Polar Bears will be killed off by the year 2050 unless Palin's policies are stopped now. These developments are concurrent with the increase of oil exploration and drilling in Alaska. Palin is lying about Alaska, about oil, about Polar Bears and about Global Warming. [See: Washington Post, Polar Bear Population Seen Declining; ]

As a result of these efforts, polar bears are more numerous now than they were 40 years ago. The polar bear population in the southern Beaufort Sea off Alaska’s North Slope has been relatively stable for 20 years, according to a federal analysis.

In fact, there is insufficient evidence that polar bears are in danger of becoming extinct within the foreseeable future — the trigger for protection under the Endangered Species Act. And there is no evidence that polar bears are being mismanaged through existing international agreements and the federal Marine Mammal Protection Act.

--Sarah Palin, New York Times

In fact, the polar bear population in Alaska is declining.

Two-thirds of the world's polar bears will be killed off by 2050 _ and the entire population gone from Alaska _ because of thinning sea ice from global warming in the Arctic, government scientists forecast Friday.

Only in the northern Canadian Arctic islands and the west coast of Greenland are any of the world's 16,000 polar bears expected to survive through the end of the century, said the US Geological Survey, which is the scientific arm of the Interior Department.

--The Associated Press, Washington Post, Polar Bear Population Seen Declining

Palin denies that human activity --including the drilling, production and refining of oil --has any effect on environments, a position that puts her to the right of George W. Bush. In fact, Alaska is where it's 'at' in terms of global warming.

We have billions and billions of barrels of oil and trillions of feet of natural gas. We have so much potential from tapping our resources here in Alaska. And we can do this with minimum environmental impact. We have a very pro-development president in President Bush, and yet he failed to push for opening up parts of Alaska to drilling through Congress — and a Republican-controlled Congress, I might add.

I thought when we hit $100 a barrel for oil it would have been a psychological barrier that would have caused Congress to reconsider, but they didn't. Now we are approaching $200 a barrel. It's nonsense not to tap a safe domestic source of oil. I think Americans need to hold Congress accountable on this one.

Sarah Palin, Newsmax

Palin has put short term economic and monetary gains above the longer term concerns about quality of life, the environment, and renewable energy. It is not only her positions that are wrong, it is the attitude and mindset that places shallow and short-term values of this generation above those of the longer term concerns of future generations, indeed, life on earth.

Palin is either wrong or lying about Alaska and the harm that is done to the environment by an oil industry that she is in bed with. Palin should have talked with folk in Texas, an environment that has been raped and despoiled since Spindletop. Some parts of the world --like Iraq --are simply bombed and waged war upon for oil! But there is a word for those folk, like Palin, who just do it for the money.

Though warming is happening faster in Alaska than anywhere else in the US — average temperatures in the country's biggest state have risen 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit over the past 50 years — Palin is on record doubting that human action is the main driver behind climate change.

More pertinent might be Palin's positions on oil drilling in Alaska, where rich petroleum reserves paid each citizen over $1,600 in dividends in 2007. Though the McCain campaign has made much of Palin's willingness to stand up to the powerful energy industry in Alaska — last year she adjusted the state Petroleum Profits Tax to close loopholes exploited by oil and gas companies — on the whole she's been a staunch supporter of fossil fuels. She opposes strengthening protections for beluga whales in Alaska's Cook Inlet, where oil and gas development has been proposed, and she spent $500 million in state money to encourage the development of a 1,700-mile pipeline that would transport natural gas from Alaska's rich North Shore. When the Department of the Interior in May listed the polar bear as a threatened species due to warming—an action that could interfere with drilling in Alaska's coastal waters, where the polar bears live —Palin sued the Federal Government in response. "Our main concern with Sarah Palin's positions are that they are based on doing what is best for the oil industry, and not what is best for Americans," says David Willett, national press secretary for the Sierra Club.

--Time, Palin Far Right on the Environment

Conservatives Have a Different Moral Code

There is often a pragmatic, reality-based price to be paid for believing lies. If an architect or engineer gets the math wrong, a building or a bridge may collapse with tragic loss of life. Similarly, there is a tragic price to be paid for being wrong on issues. Because George W. Bush was wrong about both Afghanistan and Iraq, millions are dead. After two years of war, I stopped posting the rising body count, the tragic price paid daily because a 'conservative', a 'Republican' was dead wrong!

Unfortunately, then, these fundamental differences are not merely the topic of academic speculation. There is, for example, a reason terrorism increases during every GOP regime. The GOP is but the political arm the ruling elites. The 'ruling elites' benefit from the exploitation of terrorism. Certainly, the level of terrorism, since 1980, has always increased during GOP regimes.

The specific manner in which these 'elites' benefit from terrorism is not so easy to pin down. The archives of the Houston Chronicle, however, provide a clue. I am referring specifically to the BCCI scandals and numerous revelations about the Bin Laden/Bush partnerships in West Texas. A key player in this extremely complex web of partnerships, conspiracies and swindles is Khalid bin Mahfouz who built a multi-billion dollar mansion of imported Cararra marble in Houston's posh River Oaks area.

US moneys financed the Bin Ladens and/or Al Qaeda by way of an intricate web that is clearly intended to deceive the American people and, of course, the world. For the moment it is enough to know that US Foreign policy is insane! It wages 'war' on terrorism as it finances it. Ronald Reagan, for example, laundered the US financial support of the Contras by way of Iran. It was a series of 'off the books' treasons! Certainly, someone put some serious pressure on Lawrence Walsh who, nevertheless, managed to write a very carefully worded conclusion to his report. Clearly --Walsh believed that Reagan himself had committed high treason. Reagan should have been tried for 'high treason' but was, in fact, let off the hook.

Is The GOP Evil?

Hannah Arendt, a New School (NY) founder who 'covered' the trial of Adolph Eichmann, wrote of the 'banality of evil'. Arendt's conclusions are consistent with what is lately called 'ponerolgoy', the study of evil. Dr. Gustav Gilbert, who was assigned the task of interviewing the Nazis on trial at Nuremberg concluded that 'evil' was the 'utter lack of empathy', a defining symptom of what we call 'psychopathy'. Carl Jung had likewise identified a sub-set of about 30 percent in every population that were, in Jung's opinion, certifiably psychopathic.

Worst case conservatives often see no evil where 'liberals' are appalled. The meeting of Nazi bureaucrats at Wannsee, for example, never addressed whether or not the mass murder of European Jews was right or moral. The issue, rather, was how efficiently the genocide might be accomplished, what technology should be set up to the task, and, at last, how many could be 'exterminated' in a given time period and at what cost! It was all very businesslike, not unlike a GOP luncheon. The
pate de fois gras was superb; the wine was of an excellent vintage, I am quite sure.

Between Wannsee and Nuremberg, a 'state'' murdered millions in order to make bigots feel good about themselves. At Nuremberg --top Nazis were tried for their very lives. As in a classical drama, the 'right wing' blind spot --its fatal flaw --would, in fact, convict them. I refer those who are interested to the 'film' (now transferred to video) of Justice Robert Jackson's examination of Hermann Goring. Earlier, Goring had already condemned the proceedings. 'Victor's Justice', he called them.

Adversity Helped Shape Snowe's Health Care View
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An Atlanta, Georgia area restaurant owner with a history of racially provocative behavior is attracting renewed attention with a sign outside his restaurant saying "Obamas plan for healthcare: N****r rig it."

"When you walk into the Georgia Peach Oyster Bar in Paulding County, you feel like you've walked into a different era," CBS Atlanta reports. "Behind the pool table's a mannequin in a Ku Klux Klan costume."

When the CBS reporter asked owner Patrick Lanzo why he'd put the sign up, he insisted, "I put all kinds of political signs up. ... I've used the N-word most of my life. And there is different ways to put your opinion up, but that's just the words I choose to use."

The Urban Dictionary defines the phrase on Lanzo's sign as "a term used to describe a temporary fix or quick fix for an object using any tools at hand. Derived from the ingenuity of early African-Americans who did not have the means to fix every day objects and had to come up with these temporary fixes."

Lanzo told the CBS reporter that he was only trying to criticize current health care reform plans and denied being a racist. He pointed to the pictures of Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela on the walls of his restaurant and even pulled out a 2005 NAACP membership card.

This is far from the first time, however, that Lanzo has been at the center of racial controversy. In August 2005, a local reporter went into his restaurant to ask about a sign saying, "Is Michael Jackson not guilty because he is a n****r or money?" and found that "pictures of Civil Rights leaders -- Frederick Douglass, MLK, Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela -- jostle for wall space with drawings of Ku Klux Klan rallies and racist caricatures from a century ago."

"The centerpiece, presiding over the bar, is a portrait of Jesse Jackson, and it takes a minute to realize the reason," the report continues. "Next to the painting is a cartoon of a black boy with a certain body part caught in a fence hole. 'Yep, old Jesse got his pecker caught, too, didn't he?' boomed Lanzo. ... He proudly displays the bar's menu, emblazoned on the front with a drawing of a Klansman in a hammock. The hammock is formed by two lynched black men whose feet are roped together."

Lanzo has also played host to both neo-Nazi and Klan rallies. According to one poster at a left-wing message board, "Pat Lanzo started making his location avaiable for Klan Rallys in the early to mid nineties as an act of revenge for being denied the license to turn his business into a strip joint."

The full CBS Atlanta story is available here. Click Below For Video Access!

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Get Off Obama's Back ...Second Thoughts From Michael Moore

Saturday, October 10th, 2009


Last night my wife asked me if I thought I was a little too hard on Obama in my letter yesterday congratulating him on his Nobel Prize. "No, I don't think so," I replied. I thought it was important to remind him he's now conducting the two wars he's inherited. "Yeah," she said, "but to tell him, 'Now earn it!'? Give the guy a break -- this is a great day for him and for all of us."

I went back and re-read what I had written. And I listened for far too long yesterday to the right wing hate machine who did what they could to crap all over Barack's big day. Did I -- and others on the left -- do the same?

We are weary, weary of war. The trillions that will have gone to these two wars have helped to bankrupt us as a nation -- financially and morally. To think of all the good we could have done with all that money! Two months of the War in Iraq would pay for all the wells that need to be dug in the Third World for drinking water! Obama is moving too slow for most of us -- but he needs to know we are with him and we stand beside him as he attempts to turn eight years of sheer madness around. Who could do that in nine months? Superman? Thor? Mitch McConnell?

Instead of waiting to see what the president is going to do, we all need to be pro-active and push the agenda that we want to see enacted. What keeps us from forming the same local groups we put together to get out the vote last November? C'mon! We're the majority now -- the majority by a significant margin! We call the shots -- and we need to tell this wimpy Congress to get busy and do what we say -- or else.

All I ask of those who voted for Obama is to not pile on him too quickly. Yes, make your voice heard (his phone number is 202-456-1414). But don't abandon the best hope we've had in our lifetime for change. And for God's sake, don't head to bummerville if he says or does something we don't like. Do you ever see Republicans behave that way? I mean, the Right had 20 years of Republican presidents and they still couldn't get prayer in the public schools, or outlaw abortion, or initiate a flat tax or put our Social Security into the stock market. They did a lot of damage, no doubt about that, but on the key issues that the Christian Right fought for, they came up nearly empty handed. No wonder they've been driven crazy lately. They'll never have it as good again as they've had it since Reagan took office.

But -- do you ever see them looking all gloomy and defeated? No! They keep on fighting! Every day. Our side? At the first sign of wavering, we just pack up our toys and go home.

So, at least for this weekend, let us celebrate what people elsewhere are celebrating -- that America now has a sane and smart man in the White House, a man who truly wants a world at peace for his two daughters.

Many, for the past couple days (yes, myself included), have grumbled, "What has he done to earn this prize?" How 'bout this:

The simple fact that he was elected was reason enough for him to be the recipient of this year's Nobel Peace Prize.

Because on that day the murderous actions of the Bush/Cheney years were totally and thoroughly rebuked. One man -- a man who opposed the War in Iraq from the beginning -- offered to end the insanity. The world has stood by in utter horror for the past eight years as they watched the descendants of Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson light the fuse of our own self-destruction. We flipped off the nations on this planet by abandoning Kyoto and then proceeded to melt eight more years worth of the polar ice caps. We invaded two nations that didn't attack us, failed to find the real terrorists and, in effect, ignited our own wave of terror. People all over the world wondered if we had gone mad.

And if all that wasn't enough, the outgoing Joker presided over the worst global financial collapse since the Great Depression.

So, yeah, at precisely 11:00pm ET on November 4, 2008, Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize. And the 66 million people who voted for him won it, too. By the time he took the stage at midnight ET in the Grant Park Historic Hippie Battlefield in downtown Chicago, billions of people around the globe were already breathing a huge sigh of relief. It was as if, in that instant, one man did bring the promise of peace to the world -- and most were ready to go wherever he wanted to go to achieve that end. Never before had the election of one man made every other nation feel like they had won, too. When you've got billions of people ready, willing and able to join a cause like this, well, a prize in Oslo is the least that you deserve.

One other thought. The Peace Prize historically has been given to those who have worked to throw off the yoke of racial discrimination and segregation (Martin Luther King, Jr., Desmond Tutu). I think the Nobel committee, in awarding Obama the prize, was also rewarding the fact that something profound had happened in a nation that was founded on racial genocide, built on racist slavery, and held back for a hundred-plus years by vestiges of hateful bigotry (which can still be found on display at teabagger rallies and daily talk radio). The fact that this one man could cause this seismic historical event to occur -- and to do so with such grace and humility, never succumbing to the bait, but still not backing down (yes, he asked to be sworn in as "Barack Hussein Obama"!) -- is more than reason enough he should be in Oslo to meet the King on December 10. Maybe he could take us along with him. 'Cause I also suspect the Nobel committee was tipping its hat to all of us -- we, the American people, had conquered some of our racism and did the truly unexpected. After seeing searing images of our black fellow citizens left to drown in New Orleans -- and poor whites seeing their own treated no better than the black man they had been raised to hate -- we had all seen enough. It was time for change.

Thank you, Barack Obama, for giving us the opportunity to redeem ourselves. Now for the tasks ahead. We need you to do all that you promised to do. We need it. The world needs it.

My prediction for the future? You become the first *two-time* winner of the Nobel Peace Prize! Yeah!

Fred (that's Norwegian for "Peace"),
Michael Moore

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Media Matters: Right Again Makes An Anti-American Ass Of Itself Following Obama's Nobel Win

On Friday, the nation awoke to the news that the Nobel Peace Prize had been awarded to President Barack Obama. "I am both surprised and deeply humbled," Obama said that morning. "I do not view it as a recognition of my own accomplishments, but rather as an affirmation of American leadership...I will accept this award as a call to action."

But sadly, Obama's words failed to touch the hearts of some of the world's most esteemed and principled critics and commentators, all of whom have proven their love for America and her values time and again. I'm kidding of course.

After resolutely working to undermine Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympic Games and then roundly applauding the International Olympic Committee's decision to eliminate the U.S. city from competition, the right-wing media responded with furor to the Nobel Committee's decision. "I did not realize the Nobel Peace Prize had an affirmative action quota," wroteErick Erickson at the conservative RedState, who just last week had laughed at the idea that Obama had improved America's standing in the world.

"He's sided with Marxists Castro, Chavez, Morales and Ortega. ... Obama's bankrupted the US economy and destroyed the morale of our military," chimed in Gateway Pundit, another right-wing blogger. "No wonder he was awarded the Nobel." A poll question on Lou Dobbs' website expressed shock at the fact that the award had gone to "Our Supreme Leader." Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade (the brown-haired-guy-who-isn't-Steve-Doocy) suggestedthat Obama had delayed making a decision to send more troops to Afghanistan in order to win the award, even though the White House said it was unaware that Obama had even been nominated. "The World Apology Tour yields dividends," succinctly wrote prominent right-wing blogger and Fox News contributor Michelle Malkin.

Indeed, the idea that Obama had been rewarded for deliberately weakening the United States was soon a central theme from the right. "They [the Nobel Committee] love a weakened, neutered U.S, and this is their way of promoting that concept," radio host Rush Limbaugh said in an email to Politico. "Obama did make a big show of appeasing Iran during its election crisis," added conservative blogger Ed Morrissey. "Perhaps they should change the award's name to the Neville rather than the Nobel."

The volume emanating from the right quickly impacted more mainstream reporters. Time's Simon Robinson penned an online piece explaining how the award could prove politically harmful to the president, and Nancy Gibbs wrote a widely circulated article for Time as well, this one explaining why the Nobel was "the last thing [Obama] needs." She's right... we all know the Nobel Prize is something that should be avoided, you know, like cancer. Sigh.

It wasn't long before the calls started for Obama to turn down the award, from a variety of sources. Malkin, CBS' Chip Reid, Time's Mark Halperin, John Bolton,'s Mickey Kaus, The Weekly Standard's Mary Katharine Ham, and The Atlantic's Jeffery Goldberg all echoed the theme, among others.

"[H]e has to turn it down -- because it is such a joke -- that he'll turn it down and it's the only way for him make a win out of this," said Fox News' Glenn Beck. "Only his arrogance will stop him from doing it." For his part, Beck had an explanation for what was really going on, as well as a suggestion for who Obama could hand the award over to.

"These progressives are extraordinarily powerful," he explained, channeling conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. "And this campaign of Barack Obama, this global campaign for Barack Obama, is done by global interests that have extraordinary power. They're very well connected."

In what had to be a highlight of his lunacy, Beck continued: "The Nobel Peace Prize should be turned down by Barack Obama and given -- you ready for this? Oh, this one's gonna make headlines -- should be given to the Tea Party goers and the 9-12 Project." This makes sense, seeing as that the undeniable currents of racism, violence, and xenophobia the Tea Party "movement" embodies represent the very essence of what Alfred Nobel's prize is all about. Sigh, again.

But at the end of the day, it was El Rushbo who really made headlines. It turned out that the Taliban was also against the Nobel Committee's decision, something that didn't give Limbaugh a moment's pause.

"I think that everybody is laughing" he said. "Our president is a worldwide joke. Folks, do you realize something has happened here that we all agree with the Taliban and Iran about and that is he doesn't deserve the award. Now that's hilarious, that I'm on the same side of something with the Taliban, and that we all are on the same side as the Taliban."

Speak for yourself, Rush.

Bachmann's GOP Strategy
John Nichols | Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann Argues That Rush Limbaugh And Glenn Beck Are The New Voices Not Just Of The Republican Party But Of America.

But How Does The GOP Win With 1 Percent Of The Vote?

Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann maintains one of the largest press operations in Congress. Her staff goes out of its way to "place" the Republican firebrand on television and radio talk shows.

So Bachmann should "get" a thing or two about the realities of right-wing talk radio and conservative cable television.

For instance, while right's radio and cable hosts have loyal audiences, they speak to highly-partisan audiences that like living in an echo chamber. That's the nature of the game. Most liberal talk-radio and cable television programs focus on their side's faithful -- although, it is notable that some progressive hosts, such as Ed Schultz (a prairie populist who made his name in Fargo) and Stephanie Miller (the daughter of Barry Goldwater's vice presidential running-mate) bust out of the echo chamber to take unscreened calls and actually debate conservative listeners.

But whether we're talking about talk-radio and cable on the right or the left, it's important to remember that the vast majority of Americans are getting their information from other sources.

In other words, even the most popular hosts are not necessarily the definitional players in our national conversation -- let alone our politics.

This is something Bachmann should recognize.

But she seems to be confused -- to put it charitably -- and maybe just a little politically suicidal.

Appearing on CNN's "Larry King Show" the other night, she argued that Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are the new voices not just of the Republican Party but of America.

King kept noting that the actual appeal of Beck -- the hot new "star" of the right -- and his compatriots is miniscule when compared with the potential audience. "They're talking (to) about one percent of the population," observed the veteran cable host. "They had no effect on the election... Would you want them to be the voice of the Republican Party?"

In fact, only the grand old man of right-wing talk radio, Limbaugh, can stake a reasonable claim on a listenership that exceeds 5 percent of the population. And even by Limbaugh's wildest estimates of his appeal, his listenership does not account for 10 percent of the voting-age population.

But Bachmann wasn't interested in real numbers, or in the very real prospect that she was proposing a strategy that could further narrow the appeal of a Republican party that has yet to rebound in the polls after two dismal election cycles.

Here, courtesy of the keen observers at Think Progress is a snippet of the conversation:

KING: Would you want the Limbaugh, that crowd -- would you want them to be your voice as the Republican Party stands in this country?

BACHMANN: Well remember it's who the American people are referring to Larry. And the American people are looking to voices like Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, Glenn Beck...

KING: I just told you -- it's 2 percent of America (that regularly tunes in to Bachmann's favorite programming). It's 2 percent!

BACHMANN: If you look for a critical mass, that's the movement, that's the direction that the critical mass is going. And the American people are very smart people.

The American people are very smart people.

The vast majority of them pay scant attention to Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck or Michele Bachmann. And when Americans come in contact with the toxic rhetoric of the right, they wisely reject it. (Back in the spring, when Limbaugh was making headlines with his "I hope Obama fails" ranting, polls showed that Americans approved of Obama by a 65-29 margin, while they disapproved of Limbaugh 46-30.)

The question that King was trying to get at, and that Bachmann could not quite wrap her head around, was the electoral reality that, even if President Obama and the Democrats stumble, the Republican party is going to have a hard time renewing itself with a "critical mass" that hugs the far fringes of the political continuum.

Perhaps that is why, when Bachmann was finished with her rumination, King did not try to argue with her.

He simply chuckled and said: "That's funny."

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