The Moronic Right and Attacks on Bill Maher

Michelle Malkin Moron
Michelle Malkin, Moron-Puppeteer

Being the product of an inner-London state education, I have to admit my Latin ain’t what it should be. When I first encountered the term ad-hominem, used frequently enough in online debate, I had to go and Google it. It means an attack on the person rather than the idea – a simple enough concept, but the use of the neat Latin phrase is understandable, given Twitter’s 140 character limit. It’s a useful term as it describes much of the discourse of morons both online and in the mass media, and especially on the right. Given the sheep-like behaviour of right-wing morons, when an ad-hominem attack is begun in the moron media, I usually see it echoed a thousand-fold on Twitter.

This week’s example is an attack on the satirist, Bill Maher. Maher didn’t actually have to do anything to warrant the attack; what happened was a textbook exercise in the manipulation of morons. The starting point was Rush Limbaugh’s hysterical attack on Sandra Fluke, who he used as a proxy to label women who enjoy sex as sluts. Limbaugh’s attack exposed not only his hatred of women, and of female sexuality, but in the wave of support it created for him, it exposed the American Taliban’s war on sex.

While it’s easy for the truly moronic to scream about sluts, the moron-puppeteers – those who make a living winding up morons – had to be more circumspect. After all, Rush got a kicking from his advertisers; and other right-wing moron commentators, such as Michelle Malkin, didn’t want to follow that example. So the strategy was to use the right-wing staple, ad-hominem. Rather than defend the indefensible, attack someone else as a smoke screen. They chose Maher, labelling him misogynistic for attacks he’s made on Sarah Palin and others. “The liberal war on conservative women!” they screamed.

From the little coverage I looked at, Maher isn’t a misogynist. The Malkin trick is simply to label any attack on a woman, however well founded, as sexist. Who’d fall for that? Morons of course. But the point is, it’s not relevant – morons are screaming at Maher, not because he’s said anything wrong, but to try to balance out the obvious Republican hatred of women, and make it look like it exists on both ends of the political spectrum. Of course, hidden in this strategy is an admission of guilt: the Republican Party has undoubtedly declared war on female sexuality, via abortion, contraception, and simple slut-shaming. The attacks on Maher only serve to underline the lack of a defence.

The use of ad-hominem attacks by morons is frequent and entertaining. The key antidote is to not get distracted by them. Laugh, ignore and move on. After all, if the only attack you can make on Richard Dawkins’ wonderful work on promoting atheism is that his ancestor may have owned slaves, you’ve lost the argument. The fact that Obama-haters have exhausted themselves trying to prove he wasn’t born in the US is a sign of desperation. And I myself have been labelled an Alinskyite so frequently, I had to Google it to find out what it meant.

We should be heartened by the sheer stupidity of right-wing debating tactics. They’re already scraping the bottom of the barrel – where can they go next? In fact, don’t answer that – the truth could be scary.

Drunken Brawl Excites Morons

Daily Mail Fail
News For Morons

Let me start with some background for people who have never visited Britain: we drink. A lot. And unlike our continental neighbours, who drink moderately most days of the week, we like to binge. This makes for busy times for the police and hospitals at weekends. In fact, if you’re an aspiring war reporter looking for experience, just head for any British town or city on a Friday night. But be careful out there.

Usually, this attracts little attention in the media. After all, it happens all the time, everywhere. But one particular brawl has excited the moronic end of the press, along with morons throughout the Twitterverse: a brawl that took place in the city of Leicester.

What Happened

A group of Somali women attacked a white woman; they claimed they were responding to racial abuse. The incident was captured on CCTV and the women were arrested, charged, found guilty and handed down a suspended sentence and curfew (for the worst offender) and community service for the rest.

Then The Media Got Wind Of It

Drunken brawls happen in every British city, every weekend. The unusual aspect of this was that it involved Somalis: almost all alcohol-related disorder usually involves white British people.

Being Somali, the women are also Muslim – although clearly are not practising Muslims. This helps expose the nonsensical far-right accusation that “Muslims refuse to integrate”. I personally know Muslims who drink and mix freely in British society; the EDL, BNP and other Muslim-baiting morons would have you believe that all British Muslim women wear burqas and “hate our way of life”. It seems that these young women actually like our “way of life” – perhaps a little bit too much.

The right-wing press, of course, sniffed a chance for Muslim-baiting. Rather than celebrate how well adapted these women had become to the British lifestyle, they ran headlines such as The Telegraph’s: Muslim women not used to drinking walk free after attack on woman. The only other papers to carry the story, with the same anti-Muslim spin, were the ultra-right-wing Daily Mail and Murdoch’s Sun. All three papers have great racist form. Oh, and StormFront, a Nazi site, also carried the story.

All three papers managed to mention the women’s religion in their headlines. Strangely, I’ve never seen a headline about Christian drinking violence, although this happens pretty much every day. The “walk free” part of the headline was used to imply that they were let off. This was misleading – as I’ve mentioned, they were found guilty and received similar penalties that anyone else would have done in the same circumstances.

And Then Twitter

The far-right BNP, EDL and their moronic online supporters wasted no time in spreading the story, twisting it more with each telling. What began yesterday as a regular Friday night incident for Leicester police, with a racial twist, is now evidence of a Jihad.

This is a perfect example of the race-hate machine in action: from the seed of any story comes another excuse to stoke up race hate among morons. The fact that around 99% of drunken, violent attacks in the UK are made by white people is irrelevant to them; they only need these isolated incidents to fire up their moronic followers into a frenzy of mouth-frothing hatred.

Moronic Twitter Lists

I’ve ended up on quite a few Twitter lists, and most are very flattering. But the list entries I most enjoy being on are the moronic ones – these bring a smile to my face. Below are genuine lists that people actually took the time to create and add me to. For which I’m truly grateful.

I’m unhinged!

I love these ones. I tweet for Soros (and work for him too). Apparently.

Repent!

Another double: trolls-6 and dumbasses-7. I’m slightly hurt I didn’t make dumbasses-1.

This is more like it! Threats to national security.

I’m not Obama’s greatest fan, but at least he’s sane and knows what he’s talking about.

Nice and simple.

This made me laugh – well done that moron!

This made me laugh in a different way.

Someone spotted my coded message of racism and hate.

I wonder what this person thinks about me?

I try to attack nicely, but I can promise I have reason.

I might put this on a T shirt.

Thanks Kim, I love you too!

Perhaps my favourite. It’s nice to be taken seriously.

When Bios Attack

The bio of a Twitter user is important: in a mere 140 characters, a person must describe themselves and their beliefs in an informative (and hopefully entertaining) way. This applies to morons as much as to everyone else. In such a small space, how do you demonstrate the lack of intelligence, knowledge and ability for independent thought that will attract other morons to follow you?

I’ve scoured the bios of Twitter morons in order to create a library of essential moron bio extracts, which I present below. Every phrase here was a genuine copy-and-paste. I’ll publish additions to this list from time to time, ensuring it stays current (for example, if Sarah Palin becomes President and nukes Malta by accident, you may choose to add “Those Maltese Islamofascists had it coming”). If you’re a moron, please feel free to use this valuable, royalty-free resource. A credit would be nice.

  1. 3 times mobilized retired US Army Res. Major– If you’ve been in the military, say so! Morons need to know this stuff.
  2. Our land isn’t Arab land – A Zionist essential.
  3. The LORD also shall roar out of Zion … and the heavens and the earth shall shake! Joel 3:16 – Bible verses are always appreciated.
  4. We are taking America Back! – This may mean “Vote Republican”, though this also includes a coded message to blow up a government building if Obama is re-elected.
  5. …reaffirm our individual liberty, strengthen private markets, shrink the size of government – …and doesn’t see any conflict between these objectives.
  6. Conservative,God,Country,Sarah Palin – Concentrated moronitude.
  7. American Patriot – I’ve never left the country, except on that trip to Acapulco, and then I got a stomach upset and spent most of the time in the hotel bathroom.
  8. I exist in the shadows fighting the enemies of America – Superhero wannabe.
  9. British Nationalist – I blame brown people for the dull mediocrity of my life.
  10. America’s Founding Fathers – Simultaneously patriotic and meaningless.
  11. Stand Up America Now! – America has been sitting down for too long. I blame the chair lobby.
  12. Director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance – One of those badly named lobby groups. Should be called Keep Your Hands Off My Inherited Fortune, Poor People.
  13. …save America from Islamic domination– We persecuted blacks, Jews, Chinese, Japanese, hispanics, lefties and homosexuals and we’re sorry. But this time the threat’s for real, honest!
  14. We are a coalition of bloggers fighting Islamism with our blogposts – Are those like fenceposts?
  15. Taxpayers of the world unite! – He means High Rate Taxpayers – the rest of you can piss off.
  16. Conservative-Libertarian – Conservative who likes to smoke a joint from time to time.
  17. Newt Fan – Likes slimey sub-human animals.
  18. 45th Governor of the State of Wisconsin – Not widely applicable.
  19. Constitutionalist – Differentiate yourself from those progressive traitors who hate the Constitution.
  20. Liberty,Not Tyranny,Stand up & Fight 4 This Country,No Socialism,Communism,Marxism,NoObama,Take Our Country Back – If in doubt, choose them all!

The Twitter Moronic Statements FAQ

Some phrases reappear so often from morons on Twitter that you’d think they’re all being fed the same ideas by the same media outlets… I often find myself responding to near-identical moronic tweets.

Here are ten of the stock concepts that reappear regularly in tweets and bios.

  1. Gays want to recruit our children: Of course they do… they belong to a secret organisation that plans to take over the world. Only the truly brave dare to even reveal its existence.
  2. Obama is a Socialist: or Marxist, Communist… an accusation always thrown by people who don’t know what any of these words mean (but it was on Fox, so it’s true).
  3. Muslims are taking over: Never mind that the Muslim population of Europe and North America is sub-3%; or that the majority of these aren’t devout; or that the majority of the devout ones have no interest in “taking over” anyway. Basically twenty attention-seeking nuts hold a rally in London waving placards that say “Islam for Europe”. The photos appear on Facebook. And rightwing racists copy these photos onto 1,000 blogs; and suddenly there’s a “Muslim problem”.
  4. Global warming is a myth: No matter that every scientific body in the world accepts man-made global warming, or that the evidence is so compelling that every serious political force in the world accepts the need for action. Or that the skeptic cause is funded by the fossil fuels business, which stands to lose billions of dollars if emissions are to be cut. What’s important is that the Republican Party has long ceased to be an independent political force, and instead is addicted to the oil dollar – and if morons like Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann deny global warming, then it can’t be real, can it?
  5. Socialist-Fascist: Conservatives on both sides of the Atlantic once enthusiastically supported the rise of European fascism, and the Socialists, Communists and Anarchists were the only mass movements that actively opposed the fascists. But given the messy outcome of the fascist experiment, the right attempts to rewrite history and associate fascism with the left. Of course, nobody who’s studied the history of that era would believe such nonsense, but who needs to spend years reading when it’s all available in minutes on TV, blogs and Twitter? Fascism is on the rise once more, but because the scapegoats this time are Muslims instead of Jews, morons think it’s something altogether new.
  6. I want my country back: A black man was elected President of the USA.
  7. We can’t afford it: The Thatcher/Reagan experiment with free-market purity collapsed in 2008, leaving a tiny minority immeasurably richer and everyone else worse off. But morons haven’t noticed this carefully managed redistribution of wealth. If the super-rich say “we” can no longer afford public services, then who are we poor suckers to disagree?
  8. Life begins at conception: The so-called “pro-life” brigade (who perversely don’t seem to value anybody’s life except for that of “pre-born children”) are insistent that “science says” life begins from the moment of conception. While this may or may not be true, depending on your definition, it’s also completely irrelevant to the abortion debate. Although given the pathetic nature of the arguments, debate is too strong a word.
  9. Anti-semite: Someone who dares to criticise anything Israel might do, however illegal and barbaric. I’ve been called this many times, which given that I’m Jewish and the insult often thrown by non-Jews, I find hilarious.
  10. They want to destroy our freedoms: A Neocon special. “They” have an issue with your freedom to invade and bomb them for their oil. Try bringing the troops home – “they” might not hate you so much after all.

Banning Sharia And Other Dangerous Things

About six months ago, the US state of Oklahoma pioneered the banning of Sharia (Islamic) law. It’s not too clear why, since Muslims represent only about 0.4% of Oklahoma’s population, but given Oklahoma’s habit a century ago of hanging black men from trees, picking on defenseless minorities seems to be standard Oklahoman thinking. At least 13 states have now proposed such legislation, for no apparent reason other than the fear of minorities that seems to make up an important part of the white American psyche.

I wondered if there were other “useful” laws that Oklahoma should consider introducing, and here’s a selection, with thanks to some helpful people on Twitter.

  • Ban Dragons – Big, scary and fire-breathing. A menace to all God-fearing Oklahomans.
  • Ban Faster-than-light travel – it may be impossible, but do we really want to take the risk? (@ikonografer)
  • Mandatory leashing of unicorns – have you seen the horns on those things? (@DanVerg)
  • Gravity to remain between 9.7 and 9.9 meters-per-second-squared – do you want your weight to increase suddenly without warning? Me neither.
  • Ban christian fundamentalism – proposed by @elizabethr1533 who is obviously a Muslim-loving Commie.
  • Ban monsters under the bed – thank you to brother @cpoffers for this sensible idea.
  • Ban Spiders were suggested by @seancourt, who obviously hasn’t thought about feasibility. Much easier to ban something that isn’t there.
  • Black men to be banned from running for President – no, I didn’t think it could happen either. Does Oklahoma want to risk it happening a second time?
  • Ban Gays – you mean they haven’t already?!?! (@mrrob88 and @jonrod1) – I should point out they were joking. I think.
  • Alligators over 1 metre in length should be forbidden from keeping pet cats (@metalollie) – I don’t think you’re taking this exercise seriously.
  • Bill Bertrand suggested on my Facebook page that False Raptures should be banned. Interesting idea, but far too sensible.
  • Also on Facebook, Tziedel Tammas proposed Equal rights for Martians – that’s much better, though the prospect of Oklahomans voting in favour of equal rights for anything seems unlikely.

Feel free to add your own below.

Ten Completely Made Up “Facts”

Sometimes I wonder why I (and many others) spend so much time trying to argue against completely fact-free “facts”. I research, find high-quality sources and provide links, only to be told that the New York Times is dangerous left-wing propaganda, or that Wikipedia is all made up. So if we can’t beat them, let’s join them. Counter moronic made-up facts with your own. Learn from the morons – here’s how they do it:

  • Make something up (if you can’t, then repeat something you heard from another moron).
  • Write a blog article about it. Make sure you link to “sources” – in other words, blogs carrying the same myth.
  • Tweet the crap out of it. If you’re really lucky, some crazy Fox pundit will pick up your fairy-tale and it’ll go global.

Here are ten completely made-up facts to get you started (just link to this post as a “credible source” if you decide to blog them).

  1. Glenn Beck is not American-born. He’s actually a mid-ranking SS Captain from Nazi Germany who was cryogenically frozen as part of a CIA experiment.
  2. George W Bush and Dick Cheney conducted a passionate gay relationship throughout the Iraq War, and so failed to focus on its aftermath.
  3. The far-right English Defence League (EDL) refuses membership to anybody who can spell.
  4. Sarah Palin is trying to suppress a doggy-sex movie she made at college.
  5. The Tea Party is a front for militant homosexuals who want smaller government so there’s nobody to stop them from turning all American children gay.
  6. Extreme Zionist settlers in the West Bank don’t have penises. They believe that when the last Palestinian is killed, God will return their genitals.
  7. Rupert Murdoch’s TV and newspaper interests are part of an extremist right-wing plot to reduce the world’s average IQ by 20 points (actually, this one might be true).
  8. UK Prime Minister David Cameron is Osama bin Laden.
  9. Koch Industries’ oil is actually made from aborted fetuses.
  10. Ronald Reagan and Pol Pot were best friends.

Over to you – feel free to post your own ideas below.

Shorty Awards: Success! And Thanks

Dear Readers,

At 5am this morning (UK time), the Shorty Award nominations finally closed. I’d been in 5th place in the Politics category, but was knocked down to 6th by a last-minute surge from The Bloggess. However, the top six positions in each category go through, so this means I’ve made the short-list in that category. Now it’s down to the judges.

Apologies to those I annoyed by lobbying for nominations – it’s all over now, I promise! And a big thank you to the 325 people who nominated me – especially those who nominated several times (sorry, each person gets counted only once though).

Click here to see the final positions in the politics category

Lord Monckton Runs Away

Twitter can be a cruel place, as “climate expert” and laughing stock Lord Monckton found out yesterday to his cost. Monckton is a British climate change denier, and makes a very good living from it. He is largely ignored in his own country, but it seems America and Australia provide more fertile ground for his brand of “science”, and no doubt his posh accent and title give him added credibility in those places.

Monckton is very important to climate change denialists – they seem to think that he adds credibility to their cause. And he is widely celebrated in the right-wing blogosphere.

Yesterday (31st January) I was alerted to the fact that Monckton had arrived on Twitter. He’d clearly been ill-advised – unlike the rightwing press and blogosphere, Twitter is a place that can bite back. No doubt Monckton was expecting an adoring welcome from his fans – and no doubt he got one. But this would have been at least matched by those who are less friendly to his “cause”.

You see, the great Lord is renowned to be a twister of facts. Furthermore, he makes an extremely good living by being the mouthpiece for climate change denial; a living he protects fiercely. For example, he is reported to have earned $20,000 (Australian) for a recent Australian tour.

Which is good work if there are people dumb enough to pay for it. But more serious, from a factual point of view, are questions about whether money from the fossil fuel industry finds its way into Monckton’s wallet. DeSmogBlog.com reports that Monckton is listed by the “free-market” think-tank The Heartland Institute as a “Global Warming Expert”. The article points out that this organisation has received over $791,000 from ExxonMobil, and that sponsors of its 2009 “Climate Change Conference” had received over $47 million from oil and right-wing interests, making it anything but an impartial scientific body.

Now, Lord Monckton is renowned for silencing his critics by issuing libel writs, so let me make clear at this stage that I have no idea whether the allegations I’ve linked to above are true or false. So you can imagine my delight when I was informed that I could now question him publicly on Twitter, and find out for myself.

I began by warmly welcoming him aboard: It’s nice to see oil-funded climate “expert” @LordMonckton on Twitter. Welcome! More info here: http://bit.ly/ifbS2B – providing a link to a DeSmogBlog.com article about him.

To my great delight, he swiftly responded to me, stating: I am not, nor ever have been, funded by the fossil fuel industry. At last! A chance for Monckton to set the record straight. I realised that he was denying direct funding, so I wondered about indirect funding. I asked Have you ever worked for a body that is oil-funded?

The next reply was somewhat puzzling. Rather than a straight “No”, he said: I have never “worked” (by which I assume u mean f/t employment) for an #oil funded body

This is an interesting definition of the word “worked”. In other words, he could work weekends and evenings, or even four days a week, for an oil-funded body. But so long as he isn’t working full-time for them, he considers that not worth mentioning. My question had clearly not been precise enough, and I decided to clarify: Wow – that was an evasive response. Have you ever done any work for an oil-funded body?

Amazingly, this great researcher, debater and spreader-of-truth didn’t answer! I was stunned. Could Lord Monckton be trying to hide something? Of course, some of his supporters did come to his aid:

@gopthinking said: @LordMonckton Don’t reply to that fool called @Moronwatch, he is a worthless communist!! Not worthy of ur time I assure you!!). Which gave me a warm feeling in my heart – I’m known and loved throughout the Twitterverse! But enough about me – back to Monckton.

He tweeted publicly: I grow more concerned by events in Egpt (sic) so I decided to restart the conversation, and said: You could always deny it’s happening. Works for global warming. This approach didn’t start the productive conversation I’d hoped for.

Next, at 00:32(GMT) @ionstp tweeted: hey @LordMonckton has blocked his tweets! What’s with that? Now we can’t laugh at them or him. Bummer!

I was amazed: this fighter for truth, this great and noble Lord who defends the persecuted and maligned fossil fuel business against accusations that it’s destroying the world, has shunned open debate!

And finally at 08:23(GMT) @NemesisRepublic tweeted: Oh! @LordMonckton seems to have vanished from Twitter! Should I now treasure for posterity the Tweets we exchanged?

And that was it: in a virtual puff of smoke, Monckton had vanished just as quickly as he’d arrived. No doubt, I was one of many who tried to engage in open discussion, and failed. But I’d like to think that I played some small part in the story of what must be one of the shortest-lived Twitter accounts ever.

Let’s Get Glenn Beck an Award!

(UPDATE: although nominations have flooded in, it looks like the Shorty Awards guys have suspended the Morons category, which is a shame, though I don’t really blame them acting to prevent their awards being used in this way. The count froze after Beck received 9 nominations, though you can clearly see he had many more than that.)

With only a few hours before the Shorty awards close, I hit on an idea… wouldn’t it be great if we could help Glenn Beck (Fox presenter, fascist rabble-rouser and scourge of peace and democracy) get a Shorty Award as Twitter’s top moron?

I nominated him this morning, thus creating a new Morons category; he’s already in the lead, but it would be great if he could get hundreds of votes – perhaps even a special mention at the awards ceremony!

Nominating is simple: either click here: http://shortyawards.com/glennbeck or simply copy and paste the following text and send as a tweet: I nominate @glennbeck for a Shorty Award in #morons because…

Thanks for your time – let’s show the world what we think of Beck and hate-mongers like him.

Final note – thanks to everyone who nominated me in the Politics category. I currently have 261 nominations (and counting) which I hope will assure me a place in the shortlist. If you haven’t yet nominated, there’s still time: http://shortyawards.com/moronwatch

Final final note: I apologise for plugging the Shorty Awards so hard for the past few days. It’s nearly over, and normal moron-watching continues in the mean time.