Opinion

Right-wing victimhood hits a new level of absurdity in response to Biden's promise of a Black woman on the Supreme Court

Justice Stephen Breyer's upcoming retirement from the Supreme Court was reported late Wednesday morning, and by Wednesday night, Fox News and other right-wing outlets already had their narrative: President Joe Biden's new nominee is proof that a white man can't catch a break in the U.S. of A.

Mind you, there is no nominee yet, though potential shortlists have been floated. On the campaign trail, Biden promised to nominate a Black woman for the court, a promise he reiterated from the White House on Thursday. "I've made no decision except one, the person I will nominate will be someone of extraordinary qualifications, character and experience and that person will be the first black woman ever nominated to the United States Supreme Court."

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GOP's Paul Gosar hijacks MLB team logos to promote a fundraiser – at a game that’s not scheduled

The reelection campaign for Rep. Paul Gosar is advertising a $1,500-per-person event at a spring training game February 27 between the Los Angeles Angels and Dodgers, complete with team logos that make it look pretty official.

But there are a couple of problems with the ad running on the conservative fundraising website Win Red. One, is that at least one of the teams -- the Angels -- is stating it has “no affiliation with this event & are working to have our marks removed from the advertisement,” Sam Blum, a sports reporter who covers the team for The Athletic tweeted last night.

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Fascists want you to believe citizenship and voting are linked permanently -- but that’s not true

Most of us tend to think that voting is one of the guaranteed privileges of being a citizen of the United States. But throughout our history, the link between voting and citizenship has been fluid and fraught.

Non-citizens used to vote. Citizens were barred from voting. Women could even have their citizenship revoked if they married immigrants. The only constant was that politics defined the line between them.

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Hitler-loving MAGA rioter who wore 'Camp Auschwitz' hoodie pleads guilty -- but to a mere misdemeanor

More than a year after capturing national notoriety as the MAGA rioter who wore a “Camp Auschwitz” hoodie on January 6, Robert Keith Packer has plead guilty to the lightest of charges, a misdemeanor of “parading” at the Capitol.

Packer, 57, of Virginia, entered the guilty plea Wednesday and agreed to cooperate with the Feds, Law & Crime reported today. And there was this from CNN:

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Book banning fever heats up in red states

Amid the GOP's national campaign to purge "leftist ideology" from public schools, local officials across the nation are now banning certain books that deal with race, sex, and gender, from school shelves.

On Thursday, a Missouri school board voted 4-3 to formally pull Toni Morrison's "The Bluest Eye" from high school libraries in the district. The book, which tells the story of a young Black girl growing up in the Great Depression, includes passages that describe incest and child molestation. Central to the book's premise is the narrator's struggle with society's white standards of beauty, which cause her to develop an inferiority complex around the color of her skin.

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This is what Ron DeSantis' COVID fight with the FDA is really all about

The FDA has announced that two of the monoclonal antibody treatments that have been useful in treating COVID are not effective in treating the omicron variant, so the government is no longer going to be distributing those treatments. That sounds quite reasonable, right? You don't want to be giving people treatments that you know don't work. That would be malpractice.

So naturally, Donald Trump's mini-me, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, is having a fit over the decision. After all, DeSantis clearly thought he figured out a cunning way to avoid pushing the vaccines and angering the GOP's rabid anti-vax base while still pretending to offer some solution to the raging pandemic. His entire COVID response has been based upon the idea that the monoclonal antibody treatments are the answer. The fact that vaccines offer the best protection against serious disease in the first place was never of interest to DeSantis. Neither was the fact that monoclonal antibody treatments cost around $2,100. Vaccines, meanwhile, cost about $20-$40. For supposed fiscally conservative Republicans, that's quite a waste of government money.

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Florida's conservative snowflakes can't handle the state's vile racial history

We finally have a bill about feelings.

Set aside decisions about building infrastructure and fixing bridges or creating pre-kindergarten or considering sheltering the homeless or even preserving voting rights – things governments might do either federally or locally to deal with social problems.

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Why did DeSantis muzzle top Orange County health official?

Last week, Dr. Raul Pino, Orange County’s top public health official, was placed on administrative leave by Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office. In the middle of a pandemic. Just a few weeks after Orange County hit its all-time high for COVID-19 infections, with hospitalization rates climbing. This is when DeSantis decided to bench a trusted and passionate voice for public health in Florida’s fifth-largest and fastest-growing county. Throughout his tenure, Pino has been a staunch advocate for Central Florida’s struggling low-income residents as well as its fast-growing minority population. He’s been ada...

Republicans in Florida have charted a course that is both utterly stupid and startlingly dangerous

Well, that got stupid fast.

The legislative session is only two weeks old and the reliably witless Sen. Joe Gruters (R-Somewhere Up Trump’s Rump) is moving a bill to fine professional sports teams if they don’t play the national anthem.

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The question is no longer Donald Trump's criminality but whether America will care

America still had the naïve ability to be shocked back on Nov. 16, 1973, when a rambling then-President Richard Nixon stood up before 400 Associated Press journalists. Wallowing in the Watergate scandal, the 37th president joked morbidly about his plane crashing before he could be impeached, then uttered these famous words: "'People have got to know whether or not their president is a crook. Well, I am not a crook." Quitting before he could be impeached and pardoned by successor Gerald Ford, Nixon never had his day in court. Some 48 years later, a Watergate-style investigation and accelerating...

Insurrection by other means: The far right is using anti-vaxx sentiment to radicalize Republicans

The "Defeat the Mandates" rally on Sunday in Washington D.C. was not exactly the blockbuster event, size-wise, organizers had hoped to turn out. The event's planners had predicted 20,000 people, but more reasonable estimates suggested it was fewer than half that who actually showed. But despite the paltry turnout, the event was deeply troubling to experts who monitor the far-right.

The tone and tenor of the occasion were so hyperbolic and self-aggrandizing, creating exactly the sort of conditions that will further radicalize ordinary Republicans and stoke more right-wing violence. Disgustingly, one of the main speakers was Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the son of the Democratic scion who was assassinated in 1968. Kennedy has spent the past few years becoming an increasingly unhinged anti-vaccine activist — but his presence on Sunday was even more alarming considering the role that the Kennedy family plays in the imaginations of the QAnon cult.

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Trumpworld's unhinged delusions are not just a silly sideshow

There have been so many unprecedented and weird goings-on in the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election that I think everyone's overwhelmed, so we sometimes miss the forest for the trees. The whole Kraken sideshow between Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, with the rivulets of black dye and shrill accusations that the long-dead former president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, had rigged the election, was so comically outlandish that I don't think we fully understood the full scope of the danger the country was in during that period. For all of the public clownish antics by Giuliani and company, the plotting that was going on behind closed doors was even worse.

We now know about the attempt to fire then-acting attorney general and replace him with a Trump toady who was willing to strong-arm state legislators into delaying the certification of votes, a plan which was met with such resistance from both the Department of Justice and the White House Counsel's office that several staffers threatened to quit en masse, calling it a "murder-suicide pact." We also now know that the military was so concerned about the president's erratic behavior that Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley gathered the top brass to remind them of the protocols in place in the event of an order for a nuclear strike and he felt compelled to call his Chinese counterpart to reassure him that the U.S. was not contemplating an attack.

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Trump’s comeuppance is finally coming

One of the best presidents, Teddy Roosevelt, was the only native of New York City to become president until the worst, Donald Trump, won the high office. Now, the state of New York is helping to bring down this miserable, insipid, democracy-threatening horror of a man who we inflicted on the nation and the world. In devastating legal papers filed last week, New York Attorney General Leticia James reveals that the cheating con man we’ve known all these long decades cheated and conned in illegally misrepresenting the finances of his real estate firm. Whouda thunk? At this, Trump was no apprentic...