The Top 10 Conservative Idiots
The Top 10 Conservative Idiots, No. 311
October 22, 2007
Larry The Liar Edition
This week Larry Craig (1) cracks up, George W. Bush (2) cracks wise, and Joe Barton (4) is on crack. Meanwhile Fred Thompson (7) has a shady past, and Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney (9) compete to see who can flip-flop the hardest. Enjoy, and don't forget the key!
Larry Craig's interview with Matt Lauer last week was a joy to behold, at least for those of us who are delighted to see the Republican senator refusing to go gentle into that good night. Keep fighting, sir, all the way to November 2008! We're with you all the way!
The curious thing about Larry Craig is that while everybody knows he's lying about what went on in that airport bathroom, he seems to think he's convincing the world otherwise. In fact he's so sure of himself that he's resorted to telling bald-faced, easily disprovable lies.
For example, check out this snippet from last week's interview:
Matt, you won't believe this. But I don't use the Internet. I don't have a computer at my desk. I've never used the Internet. It's just not what I do.
Matt, you won't believe this! And nor should you, since the Examiner noted last week that:
* In an op-ed he wrote this summer on the SCHIP health care program, Craig refers to doing a Google search on the term "mission creep."
* He's a member of the Congressional Internet Caucus.
* He co-sponsored a bill designating June 2007 as National Internet Safety Month.
* He was presented with the 2007 Internet Keep Safe Coalition Award.
* On his Web site, he lists as a top accomplishment a Silver Mouse Award given to his site by the Congressional Management Foundation in 2003 and 2006.
* When he endorsed Mitt Romney for president, he did so on YouTube.
When reached for comment Craig later said, "Oh, the Internet. I thought you meant the... er... oh yes, I'm on the Internet all the time, looking for places to engage in hot anonymous... er... I mean, chatting with my constituents."
George W. Bush
George W. Bush held a press conference last week to prove he's still relevant. And how do we know he's still relevant? Because he said so.
COMMANDER GUY: I've never felt more engaged and more capable of getting the American people to realize there's a lot of unfinished business.
Whatever you say, chucklebuns.
It turns out that Our Great Leader's plan to remain relevant involves using his veto power to bash the less fortunate, and so far this plan seems to be working. Just when you thought Bush was a lame duck; an increasingly withdrawn and ineffective figurehead; a piece of flotsam bobbing gently away from the wreckage of the neo-con ship of state - he springs into action and vetoes healthcare for poor kids. Pow! The Decider has decided to remain relevant! Take that, sick children!
But if you think that beating up on poor kids is the only way Bush can remain relevant, think again. According to Dan Froomkin:
For the first time in public, Bush warned of the risk of "World War III" if Iran gets nuclear weapons.
"I believe that the Iranian -- if Iran had a nuclear weapon, it would be a dangerous threat to world peace. It would -- this is -- we got a leader in Iran who has announced that he wants to destroy Israel. So I told people that if you're interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them from having knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon. And I take this very -- I take the threat of Iran with a nuclear weapon very seriously."
Yes, we wouldn't want the smoking gun to come in the form of a mushroom... wait a minute.
It's okay though, because Press Secretary Dana Perino reassured the world shortly after Bush's speech, noting that "The president was not making any war plans. He was not making any declaration. He was making a point."
Which is odd, because back in May 2006 AFP reported that:
US President George W Bush has referred to the "war on terror" as "World War III" during a television interview.
Mr Bush told the CNBC television network the revolt of passengers on the hijacked flight 93 on September 11, 2001, was the "first counter-attack to World War III".
He said he agreed with the description by David Beamer, whose son Todd died in the crash, in a Wall Street Journal commentary last month the act was "our first successful counter-attack in our homeland in this new global war - World War III".
Mr Bush said: "I believe that. I believe that it was the first counter-attack to World War III."
Anyway, back to the press conference. The most hilarious moment surely came when Our Great Leader decided to lighten the mood with this knee-slapper:
REPORTER: Mr. President, following up on Vladimir Putin for a moment, he said recently that next year, when he has to step down according to the constitution, as the president, he may become prime minister; in effect keeping power and dashing any hopes for a genuine democratic transition there ...
COMEDIAN-IN-CHIEF: I've been planning that myself.
Good one, Mr. President.
But let's not panic here. Yes, George W. Bush is combining a desperate desire to remain relevant with quips about staying in power and increasingly bellicose war rhetoric towards Iran, but I'm sure there's nothing to be concerned about.
Randy "Duke" Cunningham
Disgraced former congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-Obviously) took the top slot back in Idiots 292 for his disgusting hot tub antics. According to TPM Muckraker:
...even Wilkes drew a line on what he would do for the congressman. For one thing, Wilkes was totally disgusted by the hot tub Cunningham put on the boat's deck during the autumn and winter. What repelled Wilkes -- and others invited to the parties -- was both the water Cunningham put in the hot tub and the congressman's penchant for using it while naked, even if everybody else at the party was clothed. Cunningham used water siphoned directly from the polluted Potomac River and never changed it out during the season. "Wilkes thought it was unbelievably dirty and joked if you got in there it would leave a dark water line on your chest," said one person familiar with the parties. "The water was so gross that very few people were willing to get into the hot tub other than Duke and his paramour."
Yum. But last week it was revealed that Duke Cunningham isn't just a fan of sitting in polluted hot tubs with his "paramour" - he also enjoys sitting in clean hot tubs with prostitutes. The government wrapped up their case against defense contractor Brent Wilkes last week, and according to the San Diego Union-Tribune they closed with this bombshell:
The government closed its case with testimony from two prostitutes who were hired by Wilkes during a trip to a lavish resort in Hawaii in 2003. They testified they had sex with Wilkes and Cunningham for $300 an hour.
One of the women described seeing Wilkes and Cunningham in the spa at a private suite on the grounds of the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. The suite is actually a secluded building at the hotel. They were smoking cigars, and asked the women to disrobe and climb in, she said. She recalled Cunningham feeding her grapes in the hot tub.
Jeez, I hope she got paid extra.
Rep. Joe Barton (R-Naturally) was last seen back in Idiots 269 running for House Minority Leader, a race in which he gained an impressive one vote (his own).
But never let a disastrous, embarrassing defeat get a good man down. Last week Barton was back on the radar when DUer eggplant noticed this peculiar press release on the Republicans' House Energy and Commerce Committee website, which I have reproduced here in full:
Republican businessman Montgomery Burns today joined with Mayor Joe Quimby, D-Springfield, to support the Senate's gazillion-dollar SCHIP bill.
"If the poor children can get a piece of the action, why can't I?" explained Burns at a MoveOn.org rally in Capital City. "The little darlings are needy? Me, too. I need somebody to pay. Quimby here says he knows a bunch of low-income nobodies who are ripe for the picking. Excellent."
"You need this?" wondered the mayor. "Well, why not. I've got needs, too. Why, I've got 27 paternity suits pending and to quote the Speaker, 'suffer the little children.' The Quimby Compound is overflowing with those little sufferers. Vote Quimby."
Inexplicably, the mayor then leaned toward a comely MoveOn organizer and whispered in her ear, "Ah, if anyone asks, you're my niece from out of town and you don't get SCHIP."
"But Uncle Joe, I am your niece from out of town, and I do get SCHIP."
"Good Lord, I'm a monster!" exclaimed the mayor.
Mr. Burns shrugged and pressed on with a stirring call to arms: "Truth and fairness, these are the demons we must slay if we wish to save the tykes."
His patience was tested when a ruckus arose from a restive crowd of backdrop-toddlers who'd been rented by MoveOn for the photo-op. "Get these props away from me," Burns hissed.
"Kids? Who needs 'em? Rahm, release the hounds!" added Quimby with a spreading grin. "Ha, I've always wanted to say that, Burns."
The 37 rental children fled and were not seen again, but the arf-arf-arfing of their pursuers could be heard well past sunset.
Okay, so it's kinda hard to tell, because the press release was apparently written by a seventh-grader with poor literacy skills, but I believe Barton is using a Simpsons metaphor to accuse Democrats of being fat-cat crooks...
...who commit sexual indiscretions...
...and molest children...
...and then he's wrapped it all up into a package whereby denying healthcare to the children of the working poor is a big joke.
Well played, sir.
Seriously though, just because they voted against the SCHIP bill, it doesn't mean that Republicans don't want to help poor kids. Take Donald Fleischman, for example. Mr. Fleischman is chairman of the Brown County Republican Party (Wisconsin) and here's how he demonstrated his love for children last week...
A noted Wisconsin Republican leader could face up to 52 years in prison if found guilty of enticing a minor with drugs and alcohol last year. Donald Fleischman, chairman of the Brown County Republican Party, is accused of fondling a 16-year-old runaway from a juvenile facility, according to the Green Bay Press-Gazette. The preliminary hearing is set for October 29.
The teen told authorities that Fleischman took him to a hotel and then a cabin in 2006. When he tried to sleep, he said, Fleischman would fondle him. On one occasion, according to the youth, he awoke to find Fleischman masturbating on the edge of the bed.
But let's be fair here - after all, the man is innocent until proven guilty. I mean, is there any evidence that he ever came into contact with this boy, or is it all just hearsay?
Police went to Fleischman's home on November 19, 2006, where they found the boy hiding in a closet, wearing nothing but a T-shirt and underwear.
Back in 2004, the Wall Street Journal reported that the chairman of CBS's parent company Viacom, Sumner Redstone, was hoping for a Bush victory:
The chairman of the entertainment giant Viacom said the reason was simple: Republican values are what U.S. companies need. Speaking to some of America's and Asia's top executives gathered for Forbes magazine's annual Global CEO Conference, Mr. Redstone declared: "I look at the election from what's good for Viacom. I vote for what's good for Viacom. I vote, today, Viacom.
"I don't want to denigrate Kerry," he went on, "but from a Viacom standpoint, the election of a Republican administration is a better deal. Because the Republican administration has stood for many things we believe in, deregulation and so on. The Democrats are not bad people. ... But from a Viacom standpoint, we believe the election of a Republican administration is better for our company."
And now Dan Rather is suing CBS, claiming that "Viacom Inc. used him as a 'scapegoat' and intentionally botched the aftermath of a discredited story about President Bush's military service to curry favor with the White House," according to the Associated Press.
But is there really any evidence that CBS News is tacking hard to the right? Of course not! Unless you consider directly plagiarizing articles from World Net Daily to be "evidence." According to Media Matters:
An October 10 article on the conservative news website WorldNetDaily about reactions to Ann Coulter's comment that Christians "just want Jews to be perfected, as they say" asserted that the controversy over her comment began when Media Matters for America, "a pro-Democrat media lobby headed by David Brock, noted Coulter's appearance on CNBC's 'The Big Idea' with host Donny Deutsch." An October 12 CBSNews.com article contained large sections that were nearly identical to the WorldNetDaily report, including the inaccurate description of Media Matters.
CBS NEWS: Not unlike other recent media controversies, this one began when Media Matters, a pro-Democrat media lobby headed by David Brock, noted Coulter's appearance on CNBC's "The Big Idea." Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton recently claimed credit for helping to launch Media Matters.
WORLD NUT DAILY: Not unlike other recent media controversies, this one began when Media Matters, a pro-Democrat media lobby headed by David Brock, noted Coulter's appearance on CNBC's "The Big Idea" with host Donny Deutsch. Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton recently claimed credit for helping to launch Media Matters.
CBS NEWS: When pressed by Deutsch regarding whether she wanted to be like "the head of Iran" and "wipe Israel off the Earth," Coulter stated: "No, we just want Jews to be perfected, as they say. ... That's what Christianity is. We believe the Old Testament, but ours is more like Federal Express. You have to obey laws."
After a commercial break, Deutsch said that "Ann said she wanted to explain her last comment," and asked her, "So you don't think that was offensive?"
WINGNUT DAILY: When pressed by Deutsch regarding whether she wanted to be like "the head of Iran" and "wipe Israel off the Earth," Coulter stated: "No, we just want Jews to be perfected, as they say. ... That's what Christianity is. We believe the Old Testament, but ours is more like Federal Express. You have to obey laws."
After a commercial break, Deutsch said that "Ann said she wanted to explain her last comment," and asked her, "So you don't think that was offensive?"
The CBS article has since been changed, with the following note added at the end:
Editor's Note: An earlier version of this story failed to properly attribute the quotation about Media Matters in paragraph nine to WorldNetDaily.com. This was an oversight and we apologize for that error. That version also contained a narrative transcript of the dialogue between Ann Coulter and Donnie Deutsch that appeared on WorldNetDaily and in similar form on Media Matters for America and other sites. We have replaced it with the traditional transcript for clarity.
Hmm. So as Media Matters noted, "both articles continued, using virtually identical language for the next 400-plus words." Yet CBS has only apologized for "failing to properly attribute a quote in paragraph nine?" Now that's what I call journalistic integrity.
Phone-it-in Fred Thompson got a taste of presidential politics last week when the Associated Press reported that:
A Tennessee state inspector had cited a coal company repeatedly for environmental violations. Fred Thompson, the inspector says, got him removed from the case.
In an April 1980 memo to his superiors, Baker - then 27 years old - listed violations at the Carbonex mines and added that his descriptions "cannot express how bad these sites really are."
In June, Thompson arranged for state conservation officials to be flown to the mining sites on a Carbonex plane to meet with company officers. Shortly afterward, records show, Baker was removed from the case and an order to cease operations was lifted because state officials said reclamation work had begun.
But who cares about old stories like that? After all, Fred knows that the race for president is not a sprint but a marathon. (Although I think Fred assumes that the marathon in question is a whole day of Law & Order reruns on the USA network.)
And that's why Fred is not looking to the past, but to the future. Why, just look at this great endorsement he picked up last week...
Members of the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church are urging Fred Thompson to support their stance on homosexuality -- a position on which they say the Republican presidential candidate once "saw eye to eye" with them.
Thompson was hired for a mid-1980s legal case in Kansas on the recommendation of Margie Phelps, daughter of Westboro founder Fred Phelps.
The Topeka, Kan.-based church is now best known for protesting at soldiers' funerals, claiming their deaths are retribution for the nation's acceptance of homosexuality.
Church members released an open letter to Thompson this week, saying he had discussed his views on homosexuality with them while handling the case of a woman who had sued the state's Republican attorney general for sexual harassment.
"We know what your position used to be on the homosexual question -- and it was wonderful, and we saw eye to eye," church members said in the letter to Thompson.
Come on Fred, don't be shy. Tell the world how you really feel! When are we going to see you headlining a fundraiser with these folks?
If you thought the era of appointing incompetent ideologically-driven radical nutjobs to important government positions was over - think again! Last week George W. Bush "appointed Susan Orr to oversee federal family planning programs at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)," according to Think Progress.
Her credentials? Well, she used to be senior director for marriage and family care at the Family Research Council, so that's a good start. And like so many incompetent Bush bureaucrats before her, Orr is no stranger to Pat Robertson's Regent University where she was an adjunct professor.
Think Progress provides a handy cheat sheet of some of Orr's previous pronouncements. Read it and weep (emphasis in the original):
* In a 2001, Orr embraced a Bush administration proposal to "stop requiring all health insurance plans for federal employees" to cover a broad range of birth control. "We're quite pleased, because fertility is not a disease," said Orr.
* At the 2001 Conservative Political Action Conference, Orr cheered Bush's endorsement of Reagan's "Mexico City Policy," which required NGOs receiving federal funds to "neither perform nor actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in other nations." Orr said that it was proof Bush was pro-life "in his heart."
This is my favorite though...
* In a 2000 Weekly Standard article, Orr railed against requiring health insurance plans to cover contraceptives. "It's not about choice," said Orr. "It's not about health care. It's about making everyone collaborators with the culture of death."
That's right folks! Contraception is part of the "culture of death." Killing sperm, tsk tsk. You murderous bastards. And let me remind you that this is coming from the person who is going to oversee federal family planning programs at the Department of Health and Human Services.
How about all the skin cells Orr kills when she sits down on her ass? No don't tell me - she scrapes them off and keep them lovingly in jars in her basement, as a memorial to all the poor dead keratinocytes. Sniff.
Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney
Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Rudy Giuliani have been having a bit of a spat lately about which one of them is the "real Republican." Last week Romney said he was a "real Republican through and through" and criticized Giuliani saying, "I don't think ... that the mayor has ever claimed to be a conservative."
Well Giuliani wasn't going to take that lying down. During an appearance before the Republican Jewish Coalition last week, he announced that "I gave my blood for the Republican Party in New York."
Really? I guess that must have happened on 9/11 when Rudy singlehandedly held the World Trade Center buildings up with his bare hands giving hundreds time to escape before, finally exhausted, he had to let go and the towers collapsed. Remember that?
So let's find out which of these two men is the real Republican.
In 1994, Mitt Romney "ran to the left of Ted Kennedy on gay rights," according to the Washington Blade, and wrote a letter to the Log Cabin Republicans stating, "If we are to achieve the goals we share, we must make equality for gays and lesbians a mainstream concern. My opponent cannot do this. I can and will." Yet just last month, Romney launched an ad "touting the strength of his opposition to gay marriage," according to the Associated Press.
In 1994 Rudy Giuliani endorsed Mario Cuomo for Governor of New York, and in 1996 he said he's not really a Republican and he ran as a liberal. But Texas governor Rick Perry revealed last week that if Giuliani is elected he will appoint radical Supreme Court justices. "He clearly said ... you can look for people like Scalia and Roberts and Alito," said Perry.
So which one is the real Republican? Hard to tell.
Perhaps we should put them both in an airport bathroom and see which one gets arrested first.
And finally: never mind the bickering about "Real Republicans." Mitt Romney has a plan for America, and you may literally crap yourself when you learn the title. Ready? Here it is:
STRATEGY FOR A STRONGER AMERICA: THE THREE-LEGGED REPUBLICAN STOOL
Interesting image, isn't it?
See you next week!
Submit an idiot!
To nominate a conservative idiot for next week's list, just send an email to the address above.
IMPORTANT: Please write the words "conservative idiot" in the subject line, and include a link to a credible source where we may verify the story.
Use the tools below to keep track of updates to this Journal.
Top 10 Archives
Editions of the Top 10 from January 2001 to March 2006 are archived here.
The ten most recent threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums.
Hillary Clinton Bernie Sanders battle over meaning of progressive
By Divine Discontent
The X-Files Reopens
By Divine Discontent
DU 2 Still Exists
Hillary Clinton's Glass-Steagall
Who should Sanders choose for VP?
By No Elephants
Donated to Sanders
President Bernie Fucking Sanders, Baby!!!
The ten most recommended threads posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums in the last 24 hours.
Today's Featured Forums