Missouri's open Senate race gained a new entrant on Tuesday, as Mark McCloskey, the man who, with his wife, became infamous for brandishing guns at Black Lives Matter protesters, declared his candidacy, with his official announcement set to take place on Tucker Carlson's show in the evening.
But one interesting element of his campaign caught the eye of some on social media: the fact that his campaign image shows him standing on a farm in front of a tractor, even though he is a personal injury attorney and not a farmer, and lives in a suburban mansion just outside St. Louis.
McCloskey and his wife Patricia have been indicted on several charges stemming from their armed confrontation of civil rights protesters, including exhibiting weapons and, after they allegedly altered the firearms used in the incident, tampering with evidence. They have become GOP heroes for their stance against Black Lives Matter, being invited to speak at the Republican National Convention in 2020, and Republican Gov. Mike Parson has repeatedly said he will pardon the couple if they are convicted on any counts.
The Senate seat, vacated by retiring Sen. Roy Blunt, has other entrants. Eric Greitens, the former Missouri governor who resigned after the alleged blackmail and sexual exploitation of his hairdresser, has also announced a campaign. Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt is running as well.
Why the hell is he pretending to be some farmer? People only know he exists because protesters were outside his *m… https://t.co/lBSDWCr3Fi— Alex (@Alex)1621373295.0
@eyokley Didn’t he live in the Central West End? Not many tractors driving through Forest Park— Tal Kopan (@Tal Kopan)1621371156.0
@eyokley @SenhorRaposa Nice tractor but this is where he really lives. Real "Man of the People". https://t.co/tQGStdmcQY— Joyous Panther (@Joyous Panther)1621369597.0
@eyokley Salt of the Earth. https://t.co/t2ICft0CaF— David Hennenhoefer (@David Hennenhoefer)1621371968.0
Mueller prosecutor calls anti-Nunes Twitter unmasking manipulation of a grand jury for political purposes
Andrew Weissmann, the former senior prosecutor to Robert Mueller, wants to know the facts that the Justice Department gave to the grand jury to convince them to issue a subpoena to a Twitter account that regularly mocks Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA).
Speaking to MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace on Tuesday, Weissmann explained that included in the Twitter documents/papers, the account was unmasked because of "threatening communications."
"That seems transparently thin, because we have all of the Twister accounts and feeds," he noted. "We can see that. Also, if there was anything to it, why is it two months later that the Justice Department is saying, 'You know what? We're going to give this up.' I mean, if there's a threat to a congressional officer, that's going to be taken seriously. This really smacks of a grand jury subpoena being issued for political purposes."
He noted that it might not be as much about Nunes, but undermining the rule of law at the Justice Department while under Attorney General Bill Barr's leadership. This week, Americans also learned that the DOJ denied prosecutors the ability to search Rudy Giuliani's devices, despite him being a target of an investigation. The Southern District of New York asked twice, and the DOJ said "no."
"That is to shield friends," Weissmann said. "Here you have the Justice Department by all accounts, that they're using the grand jury as a sword on behalf of a political ally. That's really, you know, the road to Hell for a democracy. The rule of law means that it applies whether they're Democrats or Republicans in power, and the Justice Department isn't supposed to do the bidding of either."
Watch the full discussion in the video below:
Trump used the DOJ to help Devin Nunes www.youtube.com
On Tuesday, NPR's All Things Considered took a deep dive into the roots of the QAnon conspiracy theory — and drew a straight line to it from the "Satanic Panic" that swept through America in the 1980s, in which preschool teachers were suspected of abusing children in rituals to appease the devil.
"Decades later, echoes of that same fear had emerged in QAnon," reported Noah Caldwell, Ari Shapiro, Patrick Jarenwattananon, and Mia Venkat. "The seemingly novel conspiracy theory has grown in far-right political circles since November 2017. Adherents of QAnon believe that a shadowy cabal kidnaps children, tortures them and uses their blood in Satanic rituals. The alleged perpetrators in QAnon are Democratic politicians — not preschool teachers, as had been the case in the 1980s — but the accusations are eerily similar."
"One of the earliest bellwethers of the satanic panic came in 1980, with the publication of Michelle Remembers, a memoir co-written by Canadian psychologist Lawrence Pazder and his patient Michelle Smith," said the report. "The book graphically details abuse that Smith claimed to have suffered as a child at the hands of a Satanic cult — abuse that she had allegedly forgotten, but eventually recovered through her work with Pazder." This triggered a nationwide panic that ultimately led to a preschool teacher in Virginia Beach being accused of abusing hundreds of students in secret tunnels. "Attempts to find tunnels underneath the preschool failed, and since the trials, several of the students who accused Buckey of abuse have admitted their stories were fabricated."
The report compared all of this to QAnon, which, instead of a book, began with anonymous posts in an online message board.
"In November 2017, an anonymous user named 'Q Clearance Patriot' posted for the first time on the message board 4chan. An NBC News investigation later found that three other users initially promoted and spread those early posts, beginning the transformation of QAnon from an obscure online forum to an influential conspiracy theory taking root in far-right American politics. As QAnon spread, so did the belief among its adherents that a Satan-worshipping cabal of elite politicians was ritually abusing children — and, specifically, draining them of a chemical compound called 'adrenochrome,' which they believe is then ingested as a drug."
In addition to the moral panic elements, QAnon — which posited former President Donald Trump as the savior of humanity working to bring down the cabal — draws inspiration from a number of other longstanding conspiracy theory movements.
For instance, it features a number of tropes about consuming the blood of children, something common in the anti-Semitic "blood libel." More recently, its adherents adopted a bizarre theory from the Sovereign Citizen movement that the United States has been a "corporation" since the 1870s, and that Trump was supposed to resurrect the "real" United States on March 4 (which obviously did not happen).
You can read more here.
Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Raw Story Investigates and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.
$95 / year — Just $7.91/month
I want to Support More
$14.99 per month