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12/1/2009
CHARLES JOHNSON’S WORLD

If you haven’t seen it yet, you should go over to Little Green Footballs and read this J’accuse post by Charles Johnson where he briefly lists some of the reasons why he has now, officially “parted ways” with the right.

Irony abounds for me in this situation. The fact is, Johnson and I are in lockstep agreement when it comes to many of our criticisms of the right. We both despise the cotton candy conservatism of Beck, Limbaugh, and Coulter et. al. that is occasionally tinged with sniffs of bigotry. We both bemoan the paranoid conspiracies - birthers, and other theories about Obama - that have risen up to inject some of their sickness into mainstream conservatism.

We both see an anti-science, anti-intellectual undercurrent in some of the critiques of liberalism employed by the base, including an inexplicable denial of Darwinism, and a “the science is settled” argument toward global climate change (the science is wrong and the whole thing is a conspiracy). And we both agree that the anarcho-conservatism expressed by many on the right is unrealistic and dangerously wrong.

Therefore, having established my bona fides, I can say flat out that Charles Johnson, in his wildly exaggerated, hyperbolic, injudicious, ad hominem, unreasonable, and illogical attacks on the right, has abandoned any claim to prudent analysis and temperate understanding, and has instead, joined the ranks of those on the right and left who don’t deserve to be taken seriously by anyone with half a brain.

To wit: (”Why I Parted Ways with the Right:)

1. Support for fascists, both in America (see: Pat Buchanan, Robert Stacy McCain, etc.) and in Europe (see: Vlaams Belang, BNP, SIOE, Pat Buchanan, etc.)

Johnson’s use of the epithet “fascist” shows that he is ignorant of the history, the philosophy (such as it was), and the tenets of that odious ideology. He is as ignorant as the brain dead lefties who employed the smear against Bush and the moronic righties who use it to describe Obama.

Using the term immediately identifies one as an excessively ideological partisan. He condemns the entire right for the wayward beliefs of a few. There is hardly a mainstream conservative blog that has not skewered Buchanan at one time or another for his stupidity and bigotry. And the tenuous connections Johnson has sought to draw to the genuine article in Europe - neo-Fascists - is laughable. Six degrees of separation does not “connect” American conservatives to those putrid personalities and parties in Europe except in the overactive, fevered, and unbalanced imagination of Johnson.

2. Support for bigotry, hatred, and white supremacism (see: Pat Buchanan, Ann Coulter, Robert Stacy McCain, Lew Rockwell, etc.)

If you are going to accuse someone of “hatred” or “white supremacism,” I suggest you take proving those charges very seriously. Johnson doesn’t and never has. In the case of McCain, he has quoted extensively from some of McCain’s postings around the internet through the years. The problem is that many of those entries that he so proudly features were not left by McCain, and many of the quotes he uses to crucify RSM are not even his.

McCain is quirky. He can be insufferable. His constant self promotion can be wearing. But I have met and come to know this man and I can state categorically that there isn’t a racist bone in his body and anyone who says otherwise doesn’t know what they’re talking about. Not recognizing that McCain was targeted by professional smear merchants only shows Johnson’s unreasoning hatred of McCain to be the product of rank emotionalism and not rational analysis.

(McCain can, and has, defended himself. I don’t agree with some of his published writings, but I have an idea of how his mind works. It is an expansive, sometimes brilliant instrument that plays with concepts and ideas as a child plays with blocks. Seizing upon out of context ramblings by McCain is a cottage industry for some of his detractors and unfortunately, RSM is also afflicted with a naivete about how some of what he writes is perceived. He actually believes his honesty and perspicacity should be rewarded. Pity it isn’t.)

3. Support for throwing women back into the Dark Ages, and general religious fanaticism (see: Operation Rescue, anti-abortion groups, James Dobson, Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, the entire religious right, etc.)

The numbers of conservatives who Johnson is talking about could hold a convention in a Marriott conference room. The mainstream right may be devout, but I hardly think the exaggerated term “fanaticism” applies to all but a very small percentage. And the charge that the religious right supports “throwing women back into the Dark Ages” does not deserve acknowledgment except that it reveals Johnson’s overweening, ideological partisanship. No rational critic would make such a charge. An irrational mountebank would.

4. Support for anti-science bad craziness (see: creationism, climate change denialism, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, James Inhofe, etc.)

Ooooh - “anti-science bad craziness?” Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the very deep thoughts of Charles Johnson.

5. Support for homophobic bigotry (see: Sarah Palin, Dobson, the entire religious right, etc.)

Is there really “support” for “homophobic bigotry” among mainstream conservatives? There is support for DOMA. There is support for an anti-gay marriage amendment. There is opposition to including gays as victims in current hate crime legislation. As I have laid out, while there is a conservative case to be made for gay marriage, there is a secular conservative case to be made against it. There are also perfectly legitimate legal arguments to be made against any hate crime statute.

At issue is whether a pressure lobby can dictate the parameters of what constitutes “bigotry.” The GLBT lobby constantly injects politics into this question, screaming “Bigot!” at anyone who fails to support their agenda. I happen to support equal rights for gays but denounce their politicization of gay marriage and their attempts to circumvent the will of the people by calling on the courts to adjudicate what is, at bottom, a political question.

Are there homophobes and bigots on the right? Yes there are. But Johnson, as he does constantly throughout his Zola-esque rant, inflates their numbers to justify his own, narrow, rigid, ideological reasons for abandoning his former allies.

6. Support for anti-government lunacy (see: tea parties, militias, Fox News, Glenn Beck, etc.)

Here, I have to agree with Johnson that there is a very large plurality of conservatives who not only distrust government, but despise it as well, and would like nothing better than to roll back both the New Deal and the Great Society to achieve “limited” national government.

(I do not include committed Federalists in this group who are much more serious minded in their approach to government and recognize many of its modern responsibilities.)

This anarcho-conservatism, where some kind of 19th century government is envisioned as the optimal solution to our problems, is a throwback to pre-Buckley days. It is unthinking, illogical, and oblivious to how the world has changed since the heyday of Robert Taft. Ultimately, it is a fearful kind of conservatism that can’t recognize or deal with change and seeks the safety of an idealized past.

But Johnson falls off the rails by lumping the “tea partyers” in with the anti-government zealots. Certainly, some in the Tea Party movement fit the description. But having observed several of their events, I was surprised at the restraint showed by most marchers, their very ordinariness giving weight to their protests. As an echo of the anti-war movement, I would say there are many telling parallels as far as the average American who felt strongly enough to commit to a cause.

7. Support for conspiracy theories and hate speech (see: Alex Jones, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Birthers, creationists, climate deniers, etc.)

Yes, in addition to the Birthers, there’s the “Obama is a Moooslim” crap, and “Obama wants to impoverish us all so that we become dependent on government” stupidity. But again, prove to me that this kind of thinking represents a majority of conservatives who are spouting this nonsense and I will gladly join in the cussing.

8. A right-wing blogosphere that is almost universally dominated by raging hate speech (see: Hot Air, Free Republic, Ace of Spades, etc.)

“Almost universally?” Heh - that’s something a freshman in high school might use in an essay. It’s either “universal” or not. Sorry Charles, back to English composition 101 for you.

As for the rest - not even worth commenting on. Simple sophistry.

9. Anti-Islamic bigotry that goes far beyond simply criticizing radical Islam, into support for fascism, violence, and genocide (see: Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer, etc.)

This is something of which Johnson knows a lot about. I stopped visiting his site 4 years ago because of the nauseating, anti-Muslim bigotry spewing forth in his comments - cataloged many times by those on the left who are currently making him out to be some kind of honest conservative. And Johnson was their greatest enabler, if not inventing, then popularizing the denigrating mongram R.O.P. (Religion of Peace) to describe Islam.

How many pictures of Palestinian kids dressed in fatigues and armed with toy guns did Johnson publish, usually with the caption “ROP Child Abuse?” How many 7th century practices of Islam did Johnson mock on his website? How many times did he make fun of women dressed in the chador?

All of this enabled his legions of “Lizardoids,” many of whom felt no compunction in airing their out and out bigotry of Muslims. For Johnson to use this as a reason for “parting ways” with the right is the height of hypocrisy.

10. Hatred for President Obama that goes far beyond simply criticizing his policies, into racism, hate speech, and bizarre conspiracy theories (see: witch doctor pictures, tea parties, Birthers, Michelle Malkin, Fox News, World Net Daily, Newsmax, and every other right wing source)

How can you take anyone seriously who uses the phrase “every other right wing source” to describe “hatred” of President Obama among all conservatives? Kind of a broad brush you’re using there Charles. Would the Volohk Conspiracy be a hate site? The Belmont Club? Outside the Beltway? Betsy’s Page? Q & O? I could keep going down my favorites page and add a couple of dozen of the larger blogs who offer reasoned analysis, and, if not always respectful, certainly rational critiques of the Obama administration.

And I certainly hope you don’t cast you lot with liberals. The fact that the leftysphere mirrors the right in the number of blogs who express virulent, unreasoning hatred of their political opponents would put you in the awkward position of going from the frying pan into the fire.

As a final thought, I would ask how adult is it to throw a tantrum in public in order to bask in the approbation of your former opponents? I have no reason to question Johnson’s sincerity, just his emotional maturity. Why make an announcement at all except to garner attention like some two year old who throws himself on the floor when he doesn’t get ice cream for dessert? Why not allow your opinions to shine through during the normal course of your writing rather than playing the drama queen and inflicting your exaggerated, insipid ill-reasoned diatribe on the rest of us?

Only Johnson can answer that. And since it is evident that he has neither the temperament, or intellect to engage in any kind of introspective analysis that would reveal his reasons to his own conscience, we’ll probably never know.

By: Rick Moran at 10:45 am
37 Responses to “CHARLES JOHNSON’S WORLD”
  1. 1
    michael reynolds Said:
    10:51 am 

    What you don’t like is that he’s brave enough to make the break you know in your mind and heart you should be making.

    I really should let you do my thinking for me. You’re so much better at it than I am plus, having you take over my mind would be a real blessing. It would be a relief to lose my crowded, confused brain and substitute yours which has all that extra room in it.

    ed.

  2. 2
    Insight Said:
    11:37 am 

    Well, the right seems to be about as fragmented as the left - moreso probably. At least the left seems to agree on some basic principles (or so it seems to me), while the right has, at least since the end of WWII, argued over just what constitutes conservative principles. We are, at least I am, waiting for another Bill Buckley to give us some coherence.

    Re: Ann Coulter. Yes, she’s light, but also bright, and I read her for her biting humor. She is often very funny.

    Until about 4 years ago, I also thought Coulter very bright, very funny. Indeed, some of her liberal targets couldn’t help laughing at some of her writing.

    But those days are long gone. She has become a parody of herself and rather than being funny anymore, she is simply hateful. But that tack has brought her fame and fortune so she continues to ply her hatred in her books and columns.

    ed.

  3. 3
    michael reynolds Said:
    12:02 pm 

    I really should let you do my thinking for me.

    Well, that’s true for most people.

  4. 4
    Brainster Said:
    12:03 pm 

    It’s a shame because there actually is room in the party for those who are annoyed at some of the wackier stuff being pushed by elements of the right. But how do you lump Michelle Malkin and Fox News in with the (wacky) Birthers, WND and Newsmax? That’s a broader brush than I’d use to paint a barn. How does Hot Air qualify as a hate site?

  5. 5
    funny man Said:
    12:17 pm 

    Anarcho-conservatism really is so true although in a way it is an oxymoron. What Johnson must know but conveniently forgets are that these wackos are at most 5-10% of the people on the right. They are vocal and delude themselves into believing thy are the stalwarts of the ‘real’ America. However, after this phase plays itself out cool, rational minds will prevail. Nice piece Rick

  6. 6
    Bravo Charles! (Updated! Conservative Crack up Cont.) « The Old Right Tavern Pinged With:
    12:30 pm 

    [...] Rick Moran brings up a few good points in his post. And I do find myself in agreement with what hes saying. Especially about the “anti-intellectual” belief that does plague most of the Manufactured Right.  This notion that the elected representatives need to talk like “Joe-Six pack”  and not like someone who graduated from High School needs to stop. [...]

  7. 7
    still liberal Said:
    12:33 pm 

    I have to agree with Rick on this one. If one purports to make a life changing decision, some thoughtful reflection, instead of knee jerk blurbs is in order. I read the post and all I see is complaints about conservatives, not conservatism. Rick’s recent posts on conservatism have been thoughtful and even hopeful, even while tanning the hides of the right wing goofballs the LGF dude was moaning about. Principles and convictions still matter, even though screaming and arm flapping gets a blogger more attention.

  8. 8
    jackson1234 Said:
    12:54 pm 

    While there always is the possible excuse of mental illness or financial gain, this is just intellectual laziness. The man has essentially turned out to be a poor substitute for a DailyKos diarist. This tripe is what the left-wing extreme sites spew without the coherent insanity.

  9. 9
    Terrye Said:
    1:34 pm 

    I have to agree with Rick on this. Charles Johnson is a cry baby and a hypocrite.

  10. 10
    Aaron Said:
    1:39 pm 

    Over the past couple years I’ve gritted my teeth while reading many of RM’s wildly exaggerated, hyperbolic, injudicious, ad hominem, unreasonable, and illogical attacks on the left. That being said, I return to this site regularly to remind myself that there are some Republicans (albeit a wildly unpopular minority) who don’t fit on Johnson’s list.

  11. 11
    Mister X Said:
    1:46 pm 

    Ooooh - “anti-science bad craziness?” Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the very deep thoughts of Charles Johnson.

    *****

    Christ almighty Moran, this is your response? Look at this article:

    By Lee Russ
    Tuesday, June 12, 2007 at 08:28 PM
    The results of a recent Gallup Poll reinforce the idea that the Republican Party is rapidly becoming the anti-science party by virtue of becoming the God Party.

    From NewsMax comes this AP summary of the poll:
    Tuesday, June 12, 2007 7:17 a.m. EDT
    Poll: 68% of GOP Voters Reject Evolution Theory

    … A Gallup poll released Monday said that while the country is about evenly split over whether the theory of evolution is true, Republicans disbelieve it by more than 2-to-1.

    Republicans saying they don’t believe in evolution outnumbered those who do by 68 percent to 30 percent in the survey. Democrats believe in evolution by 57 percent to 40 percent, as do independents by a 61 percent to 37 percent margin.

    The poll also said that those who go to church often are far likelier to reject evolution than those who do not. Republicans are likelier than Democrats or independents to attend church services, according to Frank Newport, editor in chief of the Gallup Poll.

    At the GOP’s first presidential debate last month, the 10 candidates were asked which of them did not believe in evolution. Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo raised their hands.

    The Gallup survey, conducted May 21 to 24, involved telephone interviews with 1,007 adults. It had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

    ******

    Over two-thirds of Republicans reject the theory of evolution. 68% Jesus. That’s insane. Now granted 40% of Dems do too. But over two-thirds of Republicans do.

    How in the world any thinking person could identity in any regard with the GOP is baffling.

    Likewise, here is a ling to another poll wherein only 23% of Repubs agree that global warming is caused by human activity.

    http://nicholas.duke.edu/thegreengrok/pewpollreflections

    23%? WTF?

    You can make fun of Johnson’s poor grammar and short-handed approach, but it speaks volumes that you don’t address the substance. Simply put, the right-wing is anti-science and being anti-science these days is how first world nations obtain third world status. What the hell is it with the right wing that they don’t believe in science? Why?

  12. 12
    Chuck Tucson Said:
    2:37 pm 

    Way to defend your people Rick.

    I always attack stupidity. That’s why you’re my #1 target.

    ed

  13. 13
    Anon Said:
    2:57 pm 

    The bottom line, of course, is that Charles Johnson, with no sense of irony at all, has published a hateful and extremist diatribe to criticize hate and extremism. In other words, he’s right — he’s a liberal.

  14. 14
    Kevin Said:
    3:35 pm 

    The fact is, Johnson and I are in lockstep agreement when it comes to many of our criticisms of the right. We both despise the cotton candy conservatism of Beck, Limbaugh, and Coulter et. al. that is occasionally tinged with sniffs of bigotry.”

    Ack! Is it too soon to guess that rwnuthouse will be the next to jump the shark?

  15. 15
    mannning Said:
    3:47 pm 

    I suggest to several posters that belief in God is not antithical to belief in the worth of science. It should be apparent that theories of science are useful for their predictive power, not their beauty or spiritual uplifting, and that theories should always be under review in light of new information.

    Thus, there should be a modicrum of doubt to every theory of science, in that future discoveries may invalidate the theory. Meanwhile, as Hans Vaihinger has proposed, act “As If” these scientific propositions are true unless and until disproved, but do not elevate them to the level of a quasi-religious belief system.

    This leaves lots of room for a religion such as Christianity to prosper in the mind and heart, while avidly supporting science.

  16. 16
    Chuck Tucson Said:
    3:59 pm 

    manning said:

    It should be apparent that theories of science are useful for their predictive power, not their beauty or spiritual uplifting, and that theories should always be under review in light of new information.

    Despite Rick attacking my stupidity, I find theoretical mathematics to be both beautiful, and spiritually uplifting.

    Thus, there should be a modicrum of doubt to every theory of science, in that future discoveries may invalidate the theory.

    Doubt is at the very foundation of science. In fact, this quote almost defines the scientific method.

    Meanwhile, as Hans Vaihinger has proposed, act “As If” these scientific propositions are true unless and until disproved, but do not elevate them to the level of a quasi-religious belief system.

    I suppose I’m guilty. I have elevated the laws of thermodynamics to a quasi-religious belief system.

  17. 17
    Dave Rickey Said:
    4:33 pm 

    The fact remains, every person who wants to wear the label of “conservative” needs to ask themselves one question: Do I really want to be surrounded, ideologically, by assholes?

    You’re just discovering that you’re surrounded by assholes, and you’re hoping that there’s a way to get rid of them politely. But the fact remains they *own* the GOP, top to bottom, and you have only three choices: Leave; Get thrown out; Or become an asshole to fit in. Charles Johnson opted for the door.

    –Dave (sorry if the blunt term trips your tolerance for bad language, but there’s no polite way to put this)

    “Just discovering?” I’ve been “just discovering” the problems with the right since I started to blog 5 years ago. And before then in my other writings.

    It’s a pretty simple minded formula without much heft or nuance. If things were that simple, life would be a breeze. Humans are a touch more complex and complicated than you make them out to be.

    Fortunately, I don’t have to listen to that kind of drivel.

    ed.

  18. 18
    michael reynolds Said:
    5:01 pm 

    Dave:

    That is an admirable summation.

  19. 19
    Neo Said:
    5:16 pm 

    After trying to get an account on LGF for years, I really didn’t want to be associated with all the “anti-Creationism” stuff that seemed to fill about a 1/3 of his posts (I’m neutral on that stuff because neither side can make a coherent argument and probably never will .. it all turns into a philosophical argument roughly equivalent to whether Chocolate or Vanilla ice cream is better).

    That said, given his reasons claim too much hate on the Right, I’m sure there is enough hate out there on the Left to keep his posting full of comments, so I expect him to become even more disillusioned before long.

  20. 20
    angullimala Said:
    5:18 pm 

    Dave FTW

  21. 21
    Rob Said:
    5:30 pm 

    How many pictures of Palestinian kids dressed in fatigues and armed with toy guns did Johnson publish, usually with the caption “ROP Child Abuse?” How many 7th century practices of Islam did Johnson mock on his website? How many times did he make fun of women dressed in the chador?

    So Mr. Moran, am I to assume that you think this stuff doesn’t exist or is just a ‘fringe element’? Or is it that you think honor killings, female circumcision, sharia and the hatred of infidels ( particularly Jews)that’s rife in the Qu’ran and the Hadiths are just ‘maginary boogie men ? Or just some peculiar quirks, kind like a nativity scene or a Latin Mass with no problem fitting into western society?

    I hope not. I link to more Muslim sites on my blog than you do I betcha, and there are a number of intelligent Muslims who know this stuff is all too real and are concerned about the future implications.

    Unfortunately, thanks to the wholesale license given to the wahabis by the last two administrations, they’re in the minority and becoming more so - especially when people who ought to know better label any legitimate criticism of certain Islamic attitudes and practices as ‘Islamophobia’.

    You actually have a brain, so you have even less excuse than Chuckie to push this kind of lame nonsense.

    re: Chuckie, the truth is that this is a business decision on his part, although there is a lot of hatred and score settling involved.

    He’s decided to look for some new sponsors on the Left, knowing that there’s nothing the Angry Left and the dinosaur media loves to fund and pay attention to as much as a so-called ‘conservative’ who’s Seen the Light.

    Jesus lord god in heaven. Where on this post do you see anything about female circumcision? Or honor killings? If you want to start an argument, how about arguing the facts instead of setting up these ridiculous strawmen.

    It is wrong to make fun of the religious practices of others. That is bigotry. And where do you see anywhere on this blog post or any of my 3500 other posts on this site a denial of the problems with Muslim extremism?

    ed.

  22. 22
    Surabaya Stew Said:
    5:33 pm 

    Personal criticisms of CJ aside (which don’t help your case), you acknowledge that several of his points may have some merit. Furthermore, the remaining points do have their examples which seem to validate them to a certain degree that fair people can agree to disagree about.

    Of course fair people can look at the same facts and draw different conclusions, which seems to be the case here, as you have been a political (and ideological) conservative for most of your life, whereas CJ’s life story is quite different. Simply put, is it not possible that somebody of a moderate political persuasion would likely agree with most (if not all) of CJ’s 10 points? We all realize that moderate politics aren’t what Right Wing Nut House is about, so why assume that CJ was ever conservative? By the man’s own admission, LGF had a hands-off policy re: comments for many years, which is now certainly not the case. (Full disclosure: I have been a semi-frequent commentator on LGF for a few months now.)

    In my opinion, a large part of the reason CJ is being especially tough on the GOP and the right because he believes nothing short of that will kick reality back into their brains. These fools are hurting all of us with their actions. Need evidence of this?

    We have a war in Afghanistan about to be escalated, and Dick Cheney is attacking Obama in hopes of discrediting the entire Af-Pak strategy. The AGW summit is about to start in Copenhagen, and James Inhofe is tagging along in order to trash the global vote in order to satisfy his anti-AWG fantasy. Health Care reform is coming, and all Sarah Palin can do is spout nonsense re: “death panels”, rather than contribute usefully to the debate. Dozens of congressional town hall meetings have been broken up by tea-baggers screaming and shouting, leading the strong possibility that congressmen won’t hold such forums in the future.

    Face it Rick, the GOP is acting badly and hurting America right now with. Were they acting the role of an honest opposition, CJ (and millions more Americans) would still be on board with you and other conservatives. When they return to reality, it will be years before moderates (like myself and many of my friends) listen closely to the GOP again. For the sake of our (2-party) democracy, I pray that happens sooner rather than later

  23. 23
    James A. Donald Said:
    5:46 pm 

    After climategate, global warmist alarmism should be a litmus test. Are you pushing lies in support of a one world government running the American economy, or do you support capitalism? Do you support the science of ‘legitimate peer review’, or the science of legitimate peer review?

    The climategate files reveal that the “right wing crazies” were right all along about global warming - the data was cooked beyond recognition, the graphs were sexed up, inconvenient data was hidden or ‘corrected’ (scare quotes around ‘corrected’ in original), the real scientists were frozen out by ‘legitimate peer review’ - (scare quotes around legitimate peer review in original)

    You can tell who is a real scientists and what is legitimate peer review because real scientists do not hide their methods and data and do not try to silence those who want to examine that data and those methods.

    Charles Johnson is still pushing the climate change barrow, therefore is a liar who wants a one world despotism with the economy under government control.

  24. 24
    Americaneocon Said:
    6:20 pm 

    American Power tracked-back with, ‘Charles Johnson Completes Auto-Excommunication From the Entire Conservative Blogosphere’.

  25. 25
    Dave Rickey Said:
    6:32 pm 

    “Just discovering?” I’ve been “just discovering” the problems with the right since I started to blog 5 years ago. And before then in my other writings.

    It’s a pretty simple minded formula without much heft or nuance. If things were that simple, life would be a breeze. Humans are a touch more complex and complicated than you make them out to be.

    That’s the point, you exist in a world of nuance, of subtle truth, of doubt. The modern GOP is “Often wrong, but never uncertain.” You can reach compromise, they define compromise as a defeat. You can see both sides, they claim there is only Truth.

    In essence, the GOP has already left you, as they left me, as they have step by step left everyone to the right of Pat Robertson. They don’t want moderates, they don’t want anyone that tells them they *need* moderates, and their answer to every reversal or success is going to be the same: More purity, less compromise. How long you’ll pine for what the GOP used to be before admitting it is the only question.

    As long as you’re claiming the label, you’re enabling the crazy people who have taken control of the apparatus under it. The sooner the GOP hits rock bottom, the sooner a (desperately needed) sane Conservative party can rise.

    –Dave

  26. 26
    Angel Said:
    7:05 pm 

    This is the most intellectually vacant and dishonest site I have ever had the misfortune to visit. My head is spinning and I’m sick to my stomach. I’m going to need to go to dailykos or prisonplanet to clear my mind of this bizarre crap with more honestly twisted crap.

  27. 27
    obamathered Said:
    9:04 pm 

    Johnson forgot something:

    “Bush lied, kids died.”

    Glad to have added that up for him. I guess the exposure of AGW as, to be kind, not “settled” pushed that cat over the edge since he was so invested in it. Hell, he did everything but where a robe and chant in front of an Al Gore shrine.

    He was a whack job when he was an anti-Muslim bigot, and he is a whack job as a full-bore moonbat prick who is shocked, shocked to discover his fellow travelers lied and made a fortune by manipulating science.

  28. 28
    Transplanted Lawyer Said:
    9:51 pm 

    I think it’s telling how many of Johnson’s examples of what is wrong with the right today come back to Robert Stacy McCain. McCain, for his part, has returned the gesture as part of his openly-admitted campaign to pick fights with other people so as to drive traffic to his own site.

    But personally, I find it all very tedious.

    As for Johnson’s other criticisms, I’ve been in agreement with you for a long time that the loonies are too prominent and have been allowed to become too powerful. But I’m also in agreement with you, and in disagreement with some of the other voices here, that the solution is not to leave but to let the cycle play itself out and after the upcoming disaster in 2012, start putting together a party that makes more sense and offers better ideas and good policies.

  29. 29
    Michael Said:
    9:21 am 

    Rick,
    Wonderful post, I have been reading the Little Green Footballs for years, and I have been coming to many of the conclusions that you have stated above. I think he has found his niche and his crowd, I still think he is a brilliant person but he is in a definite rut, between science findings (he does his homework), his photographs, and ranting about the right what time does he have for conservative thought? Seriously, if all you did was try to find what was wrong with a wonderful home, would you want to live there or even be able to see what was good about it? I think he has lost sight of the you gotta take the good with the bad, not necessarily justify the bad, but that nirvana does not exist. Oh well, hopefully he will figure this out.
    Keep up the good work,

  30. 30
    mannning Said:
    3:17 pm 

    CT: As I wrote that post, I was thinking of the beauty of many mathematical constructs and their relationship to reality, so I must agree with you. They are indeed inspiring and uplifting, but, to me, in a quite different way from religious inspiration.

    In trying to capture the difference in a word or two, scientific explanation gives great mental satisfaction that a lot of physical loose ends or mysteries have been knitted together or solved, however temporarily, while religious inspiration fills the heart and mind with the pleasures of love that seem to be permanenty “there” for the taking.

    Both phenomena should be appreciated to the fullest in one’s life, I believe.

  31. 31
    lionheart Said:
    4:49 pm 

    You also should have pointed out that CJ has a personal vendetta against McCain for demonstrating what a fool he (CJ) is. Too many links to post, but you really should read some of them- total annihilation.

  32. 32
    Shane Said:
    8:32 pm 

    I disagree with Rick on many things, but I don’t doubt that he’s more interested on what’s good for the country than winning some argument. In fact, those on the right make up a diverse group who are driven by basic principles that can be expressed in many ways. We can both call ourselves conservative and then debate what that means, but having the debate doesn’t mean that at the end of it one of us must be excommunicated - that’s not only immature, it’s self-defeating. Human beings have been debating the very subjects we’re all so angry about for thousands of years - why do so many think that our vigorous debate means the end of the world or something?

    Consider nonsense by Dave Ricky:

    In essence, the GOP has already left you, as they left me, as they have step by step left everyone to the right of Pat Robertson. They don’t want moderates, they don’t want anyone that tells them they *need* moderates, and their answer to every reversal or success is going to be the same: More purity, less compromise. How long you’ll pine for what the GOP used to be before admitting it is the only question.

    My guess is that Dave knows no Republicans - that he lives in an echo-chamber of progressives who spend their days concocting caricatures of their political opponents. He eagerly embraces this partisan perspective of Republicans because that’s what he wants to believe - and that’s OK - but my sense is that he has no idea how simplistic he sounds. Has he forgotten that the Republican party was represented by a “maverick” moderate in the last presidential election? McCain got more conservative voters as a percentage than Reagan did! This meme that the Republican party is close minded is a progressive slander inspired more by political calculation than fact.

    Too often people spend their time attacking the motivations of others they know nothing about. To criticize Obama is to hear again how racist one is. To wonder aloud about man-made global warming is to be anti-science. To oppose same-sex marriage is the hate gays. There’s too much of this kind of rhetorical ignorance, and it poisons conversation between ideological opponents. It’s a big reason why I no longer visit LGF. Hatred of the religious and the trivializing of mass murdering movements so one can slander people you disagree with is ugly and revealing. Charles Johnson has given in to the paranoia he rails against, and that’s a big loss for all of us that enjoy the debate on big issues.

  33. 33
    Dave Rickey Said:
    8:39 am 

    Shane, my blogroll casts such a wide net, I routinely read blogs that criticize Palin and the Tea Parties from the right. I’m not trapped in a bubble of progressive punditry, although I’d be curious for your definition of where the line for “progressive” (by which you apparently mean clearly leftist, rather than the centrism that meets Michelle Malkin’s standard of “radical leftism”) starts.

    To claim the GOP is open-minded would be to claim they have minds they actually use. Unfortunately, that’s becoming an oxymoron, as you so ably demonstrate for us.

    –Dave

  34. 34
    David R. Block Said:
    4:14 pm 

    Sadly, Charles’ demand of lockstep agreement with his musings for commenting privileges at his site, and his removal of folks for disagreeing or even questioning his highness is legendary.

    I was removed, and I haven’t the foggiest as to why, because I was removed sometime in a four week span when I had not commented at LGF.

    Big Brother Charles Johnson is always watching for apostates from the Church of Charles Johnson.

  35. 35
    Fnord Said:
    6:13 pm 

    Good day, y`all. Im a norwegian who has been writing with US military people for a long time over at the blogs Abu Muqawama and afghanquest.com. I have sort of been their token far leftist, so take my argument for what its worth:

    I would just point out that from a war-fighting pov, CJ is right. The insane mix of anti-islam, pro-Israel and “conservatism” (wich is in fact extreme radicalism) is a major force in the West today. See the Swiss ban of minarets recently, wich is followed by a initiative to ban jewish cemetaries. These are the folks that Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer hang out with, and wich Pajamas Media and others of the far right anti-muslim force support. Osama bin Ladens expressed war-aim is to start a war between the west and the umma, or islamic world. Blogs like Gates of Vienna could be sponsored by Al Quaeda. Because it serves the enemy.

    Just saying.

  36. 36
    Ksren Said:
    10:26 am 

    BTW, and oddly, a candidate for POTUS does not need to be a NBC of the US. But no person who is NOT a NBC can BE the POTUS — actually assume the Office of the POTUS and become the C-in-C of the United States Armed Forces.

    And, incidentally, Black Liberation Theology is what J. Wright admits to preaching. Well, Liberation Theology IS marxism. So, Wright’s church would not have been a ideological conflict for Obama. 20 years absorbing the truly anti-American, racist “hate-speech” of J. Wright . . .and the American people had no problem with that? Wow.

    What if McCain had chosen to be a member of Dobson’s or Robertson’s church for 20 years, would that have been okay with you, Rick? It wouldn’t have been okay with me. If McCain — or ANY R Potus candidate– had chosen to sit in Dobson’s or Robertson’s church for 20 years, he would have been UN-electable.

    Perhaps sir you just don’t comprehend the full breath of what occurred in the USA during the 2008 election cycle. I have no doubt that it will take historians generations to understand and reconcile both the 2008 election and the deeds and intentions of this current Administration.

  37. 37
    Ksren Said:
    10:43 am 

    Odd — my original post was redacted. I’ll resubmit.

    Ksren Said:
    9:58 am

    Hmmm . . .I simply must take issue with you view that the so-called “birthers” are all paranoid crazies. It’s simply not true.

    When Maj. Hassan slaughtered US Army soldiers @ Ft. Hood, I recall an FBI Agent (probably on Fox) say that: “you know who a person is by his/her life history, associations & affiliations.” Right.

    Problem is that we do know who Obama is by his life history, associations and affiliations too. The pattern of Obama’s life history — from cradle to present — is dominated by actual Communists (FMDavis and others), Black LIberation Revolutionaries (J. Wright) and a problematic number of militant America-hating Islamic radicals. There’s simply no evidence of transformation and rejection of marxist ideology — literally — at any point in his life except when he’s stumping on the campaign trail.

    “Guilt by association” is considered wrong, or perhaps simple-minded but in reality, one of the important ways we can understand the true mind/views/ideology of a person.

    Re: the “birther” issue — well, in reality, it’s irrelevant where Obama was born. He could have been born in the Soviet Union (in 1961) and he’d still be a US Citizen (via the 14th Amendment) b/c his mother was a US Citizen.

    The legal/constitutional question is whether Obama — with one US Citizen parent and one FOREIGN NATIONAL parent — is also, constitutionally/legally a “NATURAL born citizen [NBC] of the US” which he must be, per Article II of the US Constitution, in order to BE the POTUS and C-in-C.

    Only a handful of SCOTUS cases exist that deal address the definition of NBC. . .and ALL acknowledge that only one definition of NBC exists in US Law currently: born on US soil/territory to US citizen parentS, meaning both parents.

    FACT: Obama is the FIRST US President, born after 1787, who had only one US Citizen parent. In effect, Obama has just CHANGED the only recognized definition of NBC in Article II of the Constitution by, essentially, violating it/challenging it.

    One can obtain US Citizenship via a couple/few processes: 14th Amendment “naturalization” and “citizen-at-birth”, statute and “naturally” (NBC).

    My understanding is that Obama is a “citizen-at-birth” b/c his mother was a US citizen and he was born on US soil. He would still be a “citizen-at-birth” if he were born in the USSR or Kenya or Afghanistan or Iraq so long as ONE parent is a US Citizen OR Obama would be a “citizen-at-birth” if BOTH of his parents were foreign nationals but he was born on US soil.

    The Article II requirement that the POTUS must be a NBC — and that is the ONLY use of NBC in US Law: eligibility of the POTUS/VP — was not affected by the 14th Amendment and cannot be affected by any statute.

    The Constitution, itself, can only be changed via a Constitutional Amendment. So far, there has been no Amendment (ratified by the states).

    Thus, to date, no such Amendment exists and no SCOTUS case law exists that EXTENDS the only known and recognized definition of NBC to include “born on US soil/territory to at least one US citizen parent.” And, SCOTUS has specifically ruled: “that all definitions of NBC other than “born on US soil to US Citizen Parent(S)is speculative.”

    So, in 2008, a new precedent was created in which Article II of the US Constitution was CHANGED with no Amendment and no ruling by SCOTUS re: whether a NBC is a US Citizen with only one US citizen parent instead of two.

    Obama changed Article II and by so doing he, personally, has opened Pandora’s Box to the question of WHO can hold that singularly most powerful position in the Executive Branch of the US Govt and WHO can be, legally, the Commander-in-Chief of the most powerful military force ever to exist on the planet.

    Oh yah, this IS a dreadfully serious matter. I consider those who dismiss, outright, all questions concerning Obama’s constitutional/legal eligibility to BE the POTUS to be intellectually and shamefully careless.

    In 2008, Article II of the US Constitution was rendered UNENFORCEABLE.

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