Fox News, Former Bush Officials Demand to See Benghazi Intel Briefs While Lying About Bush’s 9/11 Record

On Monday, we discussed the massive disparity between the GOP’s reaction to Benghazi versus its almost universally silent reaction to the Bush administration’s negligence and inaction during the months prior to 9/11, as well as its attempts to whitewash its response during the years following those attacks. In the process, we covered a series of intelligence documents, known as the President’s Daily Briefs (PDBs), including the notorious August 6, 2001 PDB, all of which warned the White House of an impending al-Qaeda attack inside the United States.

Coincidentally, the topic of the Obama administration’s PDBs regarding Benghazi popped up in the conservative media on Monday as well. It began with an op/ed in The Washington Post written by former Bush and Rumsfeld speechwriter Marc Thiessen who wrote that Bush so generously released the “Bin Laden Determined To Attack Inside The U.S.” PDB. Thiessen went on to demand that President Obama release not one but all PDBs from the days following the Benghazi attack.

Thiessen wrote:

What’s good enough for Bush should be good enough for Obama. Congress should ask the president to follow precedent and release the PDBs he received in the days after the Benghazi attack.

See that? Bush released one PDB, which means Obama should release multiple PDBs, plural. That right there is what we call a double-standard.

Thiessen misled readers by making it seem as if the August 6, 2001 PDB was the only PDB to discuss the 9/11 attacks. Clearly, based on what we covered yesterday via Kurt Eichenwald’s invaluable reporting, it wasn’t. There were many, many others.

Thiessen claimed the August 6 PDB “contained no actionable intelligence that could have stopped the 9/11 attacks from happening.” Maybe, maybe not, but it was a significant warning about an impending attack. Other PDBs not released by the former president covered specifics such as flight schools, mass casualties and the use of hijacked airplanes as missiles. The PDBs also specified that the attackers were already inside the U.S. At the same time, the National Security Agency was already monitoring two of the terrorists who went on to hijack the jet that struck the Pentagon, while 9/11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui was arrested on immigration charges by the INS after his flight school instructor grew suspicious as to why he was training to fly jumbo jets without any aspiration to acquire a pilot’s license. Hmm.

Nevertheless, Thiessen wants us to infer that the reason Obama hasn’t released the post-Benghazi PDBs is because doing so would prove the administration’s guilt in the affair. Weird, considering the volumes of PDBs that the Bush White House never released specifically regarding 9/11. If Obama is covering his ass by not releasing his PDBs, what does that say about Bush, Thiessen’s former boss? “What’s good enough for Bush should be good enough for Obama,” right? That’s what Thiessen wrote.

Again, another example of selective and disproportionate outrage.

Elsewhere, as if the message had been coordinated between the conservative press and ex-Bushies, former White House Chief of Staff Andy Card appeared on Fox News Channel to discuss the Obama PDBs. If you thought Thiessen’s article was misleading, Card and host Gretchen Carlson absolutely lied about Bush’s PDBs.

CARLSON: Meantime, new calls now for the White House to release the daily intelligence briefings on the days right after the Benghazi attack. It is something that President Bush did right after 9/11. And joining me now, Andy Card, former White House chief of staff under President George W. Bush. Great to see you Andy.

Nope. That’s totally inaccurate. President Bush didn’t release briefings (plural) “right after 9/11.” He released one PDB. One. And when was it released? Nearly three years after 9/11 on July 22, 2004, and the reason it was finally released was due to pressure from the 9/11 Commission after Condoleezza Rice shocked the world when she noted the title of the brief during commission testimony. On top of all of that, as we noted yesterday, President Bush resisted the formation of the commission in the first place. But sure, Fox News rewrites history all the time, so why not now?

CARD: Good to see you, Gretchen.

CARLSON: This came to light today and I think it is fascinating on this story. It is about the daily intelligence briefings. President Bush really set the precedent after 9/11. Did he not? Tell us what he did.

How noble.

CARD: He did. He set a precedent and it was very controversial when he did it. He did it because he wanted to be transparent with a congressionally mandated investigation. And so he said that he was going to release that document. That document is one of the most secret documents in American politics, if you will, and he felt that it was important to put it out but he did it in the right context.

It’s not as if we didn’t already know what was in the memo. Prior to Rice’s testimony, the PDB was leaked to CBS News. When? In 2002. Furthermore, if PDBs are so sensitive, why urge Obama to release a whole stack of them?

Again, Bush was strong-armed into declassifying one PDB — which had already been leaked to the press — regarding the deadliest terrorist attack inside the United States in which nearly 3,000 civilians were murdered. How is this praiseworthy?

While we’re here, guess how many e-mails regarding the 9/11 attacks were released by the Bush administration. Exactly zero. Take a look at the 9/11 Commission Report and find even one e-mail reprinted in the document. Good luck. Yet we’ve seen a variety of internal Obama administration e-mails released to the public regarding Benghazi.

So, great. We’re now entering the PDB cover-up chapter of the Benghazi freak-out, even though it’s really not based in reality or any actual precedent — not unlike so many other aspects of this cynical, politically-motivated witch hunt.

  • Poet Tribble

    be independent #votepoet facebook.com/votepoet

  • ExRadioGuy15

    TrollBaby makes several good points here. But, let’s not lose sight of the real reason the GOP continues with this: Fascist propaganda. There’s a Fascist propaganda philosophy known as “gaslighting”. It’s based on the movie from the 40’s “Gas Light”. In the movie, a husband chips away at the sanity of his wife with a subtle campaign of lies and deceptions. You see, it matters not to the GOP that they’re proven wrong or have their talking points/ assertions debunked…they’ve already successfully “gaslighted” enough people into cognitive dissonance, so, they don’t believe the truth.
    Several sources say that gaslighting is something that sociopaths do. They are incorrect; it’s worse than that. Both psychopaths (Cons) and sociopaths (Teaidiots and Firebaggers) do it. About 30 million GOP Progressives and Moderates need to wake the f*ck up and start voting for the group of politicians that TRULY represent them now: Democrats.
    Disclaimer: I’m a Non-Affiliated voter that hasn’t belonged to a political party since 1990…

  • mrbrink

    It’s obvious that right wing nut jobs would like everyone to believe the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil and all the lies and misdirection and covering up that followed is the same as an attack on an outpost in Benghazi– made easier by the Republican party’s terrorism here at home with regard to repeated threats to plunge America into chaos if their demands are not met, and the cutting of embassy security, or the continued attacks on factual information, etc.

    Nifty rhetorical pivot, and especially ambitious. It seems to work very well on imbeciles who need to believe the GOP hasn’t been committing treason to get ahead for the past 50 years.

  • Jonathan Chavez

    This is a ridiculous conversation. It’s called OPSEC. I’m referring to the reason the Obama Administration has basically allowed itself to be the punching bag for the moronic right wingers alleging some giant conspiracy in Benghazi. The media has effectively erased any significant reference to the substantial CIA presence in Benghazi. And why? Because whatever it is they were doing there, would be compromising to disclose. By Hilary, by Obama…by anyone! So, Fox can blather on trying to get White House memos about Benghazi, but the details surrounding what really was taking place there will not be released and we will continue to play this partisan game, trying to blame the brown guy in the White House for the death of these four people. two of which were “former navy seals.” I’m so tired of the rhetoric around Benghazi. People are asking all the wrong questions. But even if we asked the right ones, we’re still not going to get the answers.

  • GrafZeppelin127

    “Well, but, you know, 9/11 was Clinton’s fault, because it was planned while he was in office. Bush was only in office for less than 8 months, so it can’t be his fault.”

    OMG, I have the most awesome idea! I’m going to start planning a terrorist attack now, but I’m not going to carry it out until some time in 2017, between January 21 and September 12. That way, the new President, whoever it is, will be POWERLESS TO STOP IT!!!! MWWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

  • Badgerite

    If they will recall, (and I do) during the public hearings of the 9/11 Commission which was appointed to investigate and provide recommendations to cure any lapses in intelligence that may have contributed to the success of the attacks, Condeleeza Rice ( who according to Bush did ‘great’) insisted, under oath, that the warnings that the administration had received were very generalized and involved hijackings of planes abroad. The contents of the PDB of August 6,2001 were classified. Bob Kerry did manage to get the Commission to allow him to ask Secretary Rice what the title of the PDB was. That was all that was declassified. The title. She specifically stated that no one could have imagined that terrorists would or could use an airplane as a missile to attack with. Ms. Rice lied through her teeth. Under oath. She did ‘great’ by lying for him. That was the ‘great’ part. It was all about the molding of public opinion at a time when what allowed this attack to succeed was the question on most people’s minds.
    How did this happen? It was only by the bravery of the doomed passengers on Flight 93 that ended in a Pennsylvania field that other targets in Washington DC were saved from destruction. Richard Clarke also testified that during the spring and summer of 2001 he and others in the intelligence community had given the administrations multiple warnings of Al Qaeda intentions to attack. And that these warnings fell on death ears.
    And for this testimony he was attacked by the same people who complain about Susan Rice now.
    The administration line, at that time and thereafter, was that the CIA had failed to properly gather the necessary intelligence to prevent the attack. By 2004 there was a system in place of ‘enhanced interrogation’, indefinite detention in Guantanamo, and extraordinary rendition of suspects to foreign sites, two wars, one based on a campaign of false information, and subsequent occupation and attempted rebuilding of muslim states underway and Bin Laden still at large. And the NSA doing warrantless surveillance of digital communications. The memo was released in 2004 because by then they felt they had nothing to fear from it. Some of the contents had already been leaked earlier. The media was sufficiently cowed not to take much note of the contents. And the public was barely listening, by that point, anyway. This was an administration that had managed to get a network anchor of long standing, Dan Rather, ‘retired’ for stating the obvious. That Bush had hid out in the Champagne Unit of the Texas National Guard to avoid going to Vietnam. And that political strings had been pulled to get him that safe haven. One word I have never associated with that administration or its political operative Karl Rove, is generous. Or ‘compassionate’. By 2004, it was a dead issue. And they knew it. The hearings were done. The most they had to endure was some outrage on the left. Which was kind of the norm anyway.
    In the wildest tin foil hat fantasies of the right, the Obama administration could never even come close to the political manipulation of government information that the public had a right to know, that the Bush administration engaged in. Otherwise known as political propaganda.

  • joe1939

    It does no good to post and bash Fox here. We all need to go to the CONservative sites and Fox News and do it. It’s a good day when you can irritate a Teatard !

    • Lady Willpower

      Life is too short for that shit. Going over there is just depressing.

      • joe1939

        Yeah,…but it really irritates them,… and that’s the whole point of it.

        • That River Gal

          I don’t think it does. Wingnuts don’t believe anything contrary to their own foolishness.

    • beulahmo

      Iunno. I think they love being irritated….and angry….and furious….and enraged.
      On another note, I love your avi. ;-)

    • D_C_Wilson

      Yeah, but at the first sign of any thought outside of the herd mentality, they will ban you.

    • Victor_the_Crab

      And lose my sanity and any reason for living?

      • joe1939

        I just got home from the store. I was gone about 3 hours. There were 35 responses,…none of them spelled right,… none of them a complete sentence,… none of them a rational thought. All because I went on a RW site and posted what I thought of the Teatards.

        “The Teatards,.. a whole bunch of insanity in a small package. Your
        financiers are laughing all the way to the Bank. You blindly follow
        their wishes in supporting causes and policies that continually screw
        you over and enrich them,…and you do it with a smile.”

        It’s the little things that make life worth living !

        • Victor_the_Crab

          You’re a braver soul than I am, sir. :)

  • don

    Yes, the republicans are being hypocrites. Nothing new for them. I just wonder what happened to the dream of a transparent government. Nine times out of ten when someone wants to keep something secret in a bureaucracy the are covering up incompetence or Corruption …. Nothing more.

    • beulahmo

      In this case I think most of the reason for the ‘cover-up’, such as it was, was because the Benghazi outpost was involved in covert intelligence gathering. That’s the sort of thing that can’t be transparent. Am I happy about that? No. But I never expected to be. And yet I acknowledge that it’s sometimes a much better option to do covert work and monitor planned attacks rather than to wait for big shit to happen that propels us into large-scale military involvements that kill lots of innocent civilians as well as our own personnel.

      • don

        I think your point illustrates the the counterpoint well. It’s a tough choice. I just haven’t seen any evidence of good things happening and I have seen lots of evidence of bad things happening out of this secrecy.

  • TrollBaby

    The problem with being a conservative or a republican is that the current manifestation of these groups is neither conservative nor republican. They are a lose federation of conspiracy nuts, federalists, birchers, birthers, racists, bigots, homophobes, christian dominionists, tax zealots, zionists, anti-scientists, flat earthers, gun nuts, war mongers, and climate deniers. The only thing that holds this group together is their ability to suspend reality and allow themselves to believe in things that are easily disproven with the simplest of Google searches.

    Benghazi is the perfect example of this. Even if we take as fact what republicans allege, that the administration lied and played politics, there was no crime, nothing unlawful, no illegal activity that can be linked to these actions. Then republicans try to link those lies to the cause of death for the embassy staff. One would think that logic would prevent a person from making this argument since it would require some sort of time machine, but that’s the beauty of being a modern day republican, they check logic and reality at the door.

    • TJtruthandjustice

      I agree with what you say, but on the other hand we have a democratic president who has issued immunity to the Bush administration for war crimes, supported the Patriot Act after pledging to abolish it in 2008, overseen an NSA that has illegally and unconstitutionally spied on Americans after he pledged to reform intelligence programs in 2008, given a free pass to Wall Street criminals, and not closed Guantanamo as he had pledged in 2008. To act as if we have some sort of binary, black and white problem in the U.S. – Republican bad, Democrat good – misses the point entirely. The entire system is completely corrupted by corporate interests. The Democrats might be incrementally better than the Republicans on this, but barely enough to make a difference.

      • beulahmo

        Trollbaby never presented the binary you asserted. You just brought that into the thread because you wanted to insert your ‘Democrats are bad as Republicans’ horseshit. We are at war.. And thanks to Citizens United and media conditions that inherently favor right-wing interests, Democrats and any liberal policy efforts they attempt are severely out-gunned. We’re fighting a political war against an enemy using advanced weaponry, while we at the grassroots are left to rely on slingshots in the hands of a volunteer army — all while people like you sit in the periphery trying to persuade our volunteers to give up the cause and desert.

        I really wish you’d just pack up your complaints and bugger off. In my opinion, you’re doing far more harm than good.

        • TJtruthandjustice

          What you are doing in your “war” is dehumanizing the wrong “enemy.” The other side is doing the same thing. People recede into little like-minded Internet hives like this one where they can nod and agree with each other about how “evil” the other side is, pretending that they’re doing something constructive by ranting in unison and taking sides with the “good guys.” Here’s the deal. It’s the people vs. the corporations. In Washington, politicians on both sides of the isle are bought, owned and operated by corporate interests. The Democrats are incrementally better than the Republicans, but are more alike them than different. Nader was right all along. If the truth hurts, so be it.

          • beulahmo

            Thanks for the elaboration from your ‘above-it-all’ perspective.

            Yeah, I know who the real enemy is — everybody who isn’t firmly indoctrinated by the rightwing political entertainment complex knows who it is. But most of us here are, in my opinion, far more realistic about what’s possible in the current political and media environment than people who’re still pining over not having a President Nader.

            It wasn’t my intent to quote your words. Yes, I understand your position is that Democrats suck only slightly less than Republicans. And I say that’s horseshit.

            You, however, mischaracterized Trollbaby’s comment in order create an opportunity to launch into your ‘Democrats suck’ views. I’ve looked at your comment history, so I know what your position is. And frankly, since we’re getting close to the mid-term elections, I am pushing back against people like you whose constant focus is on how you’ve been disappointed and let down by Democrats, because I believe that crap contributes to voting apathy on the left. We simply can’t afford that right now — too much is at stake.

            You’re not telling any of us anything new. And we’ve heard all the complaints from ‘clear-eyed’ and superior liberals so many times we could throw up. Your contribution to this comment thread was not related to the content of the post and not especially helpful in a general sense. It’s apathy-inducing, self-sabotaging, uncalled-for horseshit.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            Preaching to the choir is self-indulgent, feel-good horseshit. In my opinion. But go ahead and pretend that you’re changing any minds at all in your hall of mirrors.

          • mrbrink

            It’s dishonest of you to entertain the notion that you would ever change your mind.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            Change my mind about what? I have never voted for a Republican presidential candidate. I have only voted for Democrats. I gave money and campaigned for Obama prior to his nomination as Democratic presidential candidate in 2008. I voted for him again in 2012. Based on any metric you wish to measure, things have only gotten worse for the working person in the US during that time. If a Republican had been elected, would things be much different? I really don’t think so.

          • mrbrink

            As soon as I check your voting record, we can proceed with an honest evaluation. But if you don’t vote in mid-terms and primaries, I don’t really care.

            In the meantime, based on the metric of the fact that I can get healthcare insurance now, with the regulation of Wall Street derivatives and oil speculation, or taxing individuals making more than $400, 000 a year(allowing most of the Bush tax cuts to expire), or having someone in the highest office in the land fighting for a higher minimum wage and a full quorum on the National Labor Relations Board– makes me feel better. And now that we’re not mired in Iraq and throwing billions down that hole, or torturing captive human beings as a matter of national policy, or inventing new wars to enrich the MIC– you seem to be ignorant of the fact– *fact*– that things would be much, much worse– not just for the legislation this president has signed, but for all the despicable things he could be signing by way of a Toon Town congress who’ve been throwing all kinds of insanity out there. And tell that to working women who can now sue if their employers have been screwing them over, or gays in the military who worked in fear and lived under duress that they might be kicked out of the military. Man, I could do this all night.

            But like I said, change your mind, yet?

            Elections matter. All of them. It matters who you elect to power.

          • beulahmo

            Dayum, Brink. Plenty of great points in that smack back — and that didn’t even mention what a Republican president would do to the Supreme Court. Jesus Christ, I get so fucking sick of beating back this stubborn idiocy.

          • mrbrink

            Hahaha! Supreme Court? Bah-fooey!

            Justice Kagan and Justice Sotomayor are exactly like Roberts, Alito, Scalia, Thomas, and Kennedy, for Pete’s sake!

            When I read, “If a Republican had been elected, would things be much different? I really don’t think so,” I nearly exploded with laughter. The vote-depressing dumbassery is strong in this one, but maybe they just fell in with the wrong crowd. The sort of crowd that hangs out at Nader rallies to complain about the access and quality of all the legal weed being bought and sold in this country since this president was elected. They probably wear leather jackets and roll their smokes up in their short sleeves, too. Way-cool.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            Wall Street is not regulated. The too-big-to-fail banks are not under control. Read Matt Taibi’s latest to get informed on that particular issue. The Justice Department of a Republican president, George H.W. Bush, prosecuted thousands of bankers in the S&L crisis back in the eighties. The Obama JP hasn’t prosecuted a single one. I’m not convinced that foreign policy would have been much different with a Republican administration. My impression is that the Pentagon kind of does what it does and the president just follows along. The “fact” that you “feel” better doesn’t mean things are better for the average American. Because unfortunately, they aren’t.

          • beulahmo

            “The Justice Department of a Republican president, George H.W. Bush, prosecuted thousands of bankers in the S&L crisis back in the eighties. The Obama JP hasn’t prosecuted a single one.”

            Okay, there’s some serious distortion of truth in there, and some flat-out lies. We’ve already recently discussed Taibbi and the problems with his analysis at length, here, and here.

          • mrbrink

            Wall Street is not regulated? So, the CFPB isn’t regulation? This is the same bureau that President Obama placed Elizabeth Warren in charge of and you don’t consider it regulation, or beneficial to working people? Hahaha! Sure thing. Dodd/Frank was a regulatory bill. It legislated more funding to regulate derivatives on an open, transparent exchange and it increased funding for the division in charge of oil speculation– among many other regulatory reforms that would not have existed otherwise had it not been for this president and democrats. I’m afraid you’re being mislead. I’ve read Taibbi, pretty much every word he’s written, and he’s of the belief that billions in fines(record fines, mind you)are a slap on the wrist. There have been prosecutions and the government has made life more difficult for the sectors that engaged in many of the abuses that led to the collapse, and then some. “Too Big To Fail” is a nice talking point/buzz phrase that sounds like nothing has changed to the layperson who thinks Obama is just like Bush, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. Just because Loyd Blankfein isn’t in prison doesn’t mean nothing has been done, or changed. Like I said, you’re dishonest, or you’re being misled and trying to mislead others. Republicans have fought all of this every step of the way. Grow up. Vote in mid-terms and take someone with you. Stop spreading misinformation. You’re depressing the vote, and helping the GOP– who couldn’t care less about your notion of change.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            It is widely agreed upon that Dodd Frank doesn’t go nearly far enough to prevent another crisis. Banks can still trade leveraged FDIC money up to the gills and are still trading credit default swaps. As Frontline reported in January, while Obama has been in office there has not been a single arrest or prosecution of any senior Wall Street banker for the systemic fraud that precipitated the 2008 financial crisis. Fines are obviously relative. When you rake in hundreds of billions of dollars, a billion suddenly isn’t much. I’m a fan of Elizabeth Warren but she’s outgunned and outnumbered. Bringing back Glass Steagall (repealed by President Clinton) is the only long term solution.

          • mrbrink

            Those swaps and derivatives are more tightly regulated under Dodd/Frank, among other things.

            Your views of what is and what is not regulation is subjective and not at all indicative of the efforts that have been put into law since the president was elected.

            Like I told you before, you don’t need to see Loyd Blankfein in cuffs unless you’re looking for feel-good scalps and revenge justice. Sorry you didn’t get your “senior Wall Street bankers,” nice goal post, by the way. Much of what was done wasn’t necessarily illegal, due to conservative lobbying. And that’s why elections matter and it matters what party is in charge of overseeing regulatory agencies and making appointments.

            I like Warren, too. But if you think she’s outgunned, multiply that by infinity(MIC, CIA, Wall Street, Big oil and coal, GOP, right wing billionaires, vote-depressing lefties)and you’ll still be miles away from what we’re all up against– including this president. There are other ways to regulate “Too Big To Fail” other than passing legislation that says, “This Bill Brings Back Glass-Steagall,” since you wouldn’t recognize reform when you see it anyway, this is just another feel-good term to appease the legislatively impaired like yourself. In other words, when you say bringing back Glass Steagall is “the only long-term solution,” you’re speaking from a place of absolutes and it just goes to show you that you don’t know that there’s more than one way to skin a fat cat.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            “Legislatively impaired.” “You wouldn’t recognize reform when you see it anyway.” Resorting to insults and spin as a response to the facts at hand. Spin, spin, spin away …

          • mrbrink

            Yes!

      • El Fin

        I agree that all of those things have to be dealt with, but you know as well as I do that we have a president, not a king, and a completely useless Congress. Do you really think this Congress would allow any of that to go forward on their own? They’re too busy introducing abortion bills and repealing the ACA to prosecute bankers, close Gitmo, or roll back abuses of the Patriot Act. Do you really think they’re going to bother calling for the 9/11 commission report to be re-opened? Puhleeze.

        • TJtruthandjustice

          It is up to President Obama – not Congress – to declassify the heavily redacted Congressional Investigative Report on 9/11. Key portions – deemed “shocking” by those who have read them – are said to implicate Saudi Prince Bandar – a.k.a. “Bandar Bush” due to his extremely close ties to the Bush family – in the funding and planning of 9/11.

          In December, congressional representatives Stephen Lynch (D-MA) and Walter Jones (R-NC) officially requested a congressional resolution demanding President Obama declassify the report.

          The two representatives had been given authority under penalty
          of “national security secrecy” to read the censored 28 pages of the
          800-page report that had not been seen.

          President Obama has so far ignored pleas from 9/11 family members and others to declassify this report.

          • beulahmo

            Nice. You’re giving us cut-and-paste material that has been widely posted on conspiracy-theory sites, white supremacist sites, and far-rightwing sites.

            I think you have an agenda that you’re trying to spread in liberal communities. Looking to cultivate some left-right libertarian utopian dreaming? We’ve seen plenty of this kind of crap too, and we’re (most of us) not buying it.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            This is from the New York Post, for God’s sake. It’s a mainstream publication, quoting congressional sources. One of the congressmen urging the president to declassify the 9/11 report is a Democrat. Associating what I wrote with “white supremacist sites” is really quite something. Talk about a red herring. You aren’t even subtle about it. You think I have an agenda? I KNOW you have an agenda.

          • beulahmo

            I’m forthcoming about my agenda. Here it is:
            My agenda is to push back against people like you (especially when a low-turnout midterm election looms near) who don’t mind depressing voter turnout on the left, so long as you’re able keep nourishing your belief that you are one of the special, enlightened, independent-thinking, above-the-fray liberals.
            I push back against sanctimonious people like you who try to get liberals to believe that voting for Democrats is literally and self-evidently no different from voting for Republicans, as if it’s an easy axiom to apply in order to feel morally justified for not voting. You clearly haven’t thought this through well enough, because the only merit to your position is in the very broadest terms, observing the parties’ evolutions in narrow contexts (rather than comprehensive contexts) over decades. In terms of the nitty-gritty, year-to-year, realpolitik wrangling over legislative activity, judicial and cabinet appointments, and liberal/progressive efficacy as practiced in the executive branch, the differences couldn’t be more stark. You’ve been given ample evidence as to why your “Republican, Democrat — what’s the diff?” position is flawed, yet you ignore the evidence given to you and persist with your broad, ridiculous assertions, tossing them out carelessly, without qualification. (Oh yeah–except to allow that Democrats suck only slightly less. Perfect. That’ll help GOTV in a few months. ‘Preciate that.)
            I push back against sanctimonious people like Glenn Greenwald who try to get people to cast futile votes in national elections for third-party candidates, because the “symbolic gesture” is supposed to “send a message” so meaningful, it’s worth it to endure the openly oligarchic and fascist elected officials we’ll get by throwing the elections to Republicans. “How about a left-right alliance between candidates who want to champion civil liberties?” ask Greenwaldians. Fine. Have a left-right alliance in sponsoring legislation. But Greenwald’s dreamy, unicorny, sparkly, magical left-right ticket for a Presidential election?? (I believe he dreamt of a Gary Johnson/Bruce Feingold ticket for 2012.) It’s unbelievable idiocy. In fact, it’s such an idiotic notion, I can’t believe
            Greenwald is genuinely stupid enough to believe this would somehow improve political outcomes. It’s so unbelievable, I’m still watching him for signs that he is intentionally working to sabotage political outcomes for liberal/progressive politics.

          • TJtruthandjustice

            I don’t think that what you call the “left” (as if the left even exists in the executive or legislative branches of government) needs any help depressing voter turnout. They’ve done a fine job of it on their own. You, on a moral crusade in your self-described”war,” strike me as the sanctimonious one. By all means, bravely continue to forge ahead on the message boards of like-minded people, spin the PR, pretend to make a difference and congratulate yourself for doing so.

  • missliberties

    The mindset that allows these conspiracy theory memes to breed like a virus in the weak minds of the American public needs to be researched. This is so fucking unbelievable.

  • swift_4

    Tell Fox the PDBs are with the WMDs.

  • trgahan

    I don’t know…to build their phantom Benghazi boggy man Fox is actually having to recognize that there was A) a Presidency between 2000 and 2008, B) the President during those years was George W Bush, C) he was a Republican, and D) 9/11 happened during his Presidency. Considering their self-imposed amnesia of any national or world events (much less anything they said or did themselves) from 2000-2008 that is a huge step for them.

    Maybe it is a sign of how desperate they are getting to create ANY “scandal” to counter ACA success and distract from their rouges gallery of anointed “heroes” proving to be nothing by ignorant authoritarian racists living on government assistance.

  • beulahmo

    Bob, thanks again for providing some clarity and proportion to all of this. If it weren’t for you, I’d simply have to go without those things, because I just don’t have the time and skill to find the information and put it together on my own. You truly provide a valuable service to us.

    • captkurt

      I couldn’t have said it better myself! Bob is the one who led me to the Banter.

  • MontanaSid

    Fox does lie. The CRTC in Canada denied them a license to operate because they demand that a news station report facts and not lies.

    • beulahmo

      Actually that’s not true, unfortunately. Fox is available in Canada via cable and satellite providers. It’s labeled as “entertainment” rather than news, but that’s really not helpful to viewers.

      • missliberties

        It IS entertainment. For lower income white people, who sit and watch Fox and think that they have things all figured out. It makes them feel smart, though the opposite is true.

        This story seems to be all about spite, because ‘you people’ were mean to precious GWB.

        And Black President + black people = welfare. Cut spending.

        • beulahmo

          It really is nothing but entertainment, I agree. I call it “pop politics”.

          And the reason for the sweet, sweet rage that needs constant nourishment? It really is all racial. Even the Benghazi thing is about race, when you examine what’s animating it. The people who are so enraged about it believe President Obama is sympathetic (if not downright in league with) violent mooslim! extremists in the Arab world. So they want confirmation that President Obama was trying to protect the people who attacked our personnel in Benghazi. And there’s absolutely no rational basis for their suspicion of President Obama’s feelings about violent Arab extremists; it’s just that his skin color and name confirm their belief of his ‘otherness’, and confirmation bias allows them to buy sleazy innuendo (or completely batshit insane conspiracy theories) about his ‘love’ for dangerous Arabs. Amazingly, they think they’re being coy and that their bigotry and xenophobia is undetectable, but it’s just so obvious to everyone outside their bubble.

          • D_C_Wilson

            Every time I hear a wingnut talk about how Obama is supposedly sympathetic to violent Muslim extremists, I want to ask them exactly how many terrorist leaders does Obama have to kill with drone strikes and Seal Team 6 before they are willing to drop that meme. Just give us a number.

      • MontanaSid

        I stand corrected. Thank-you.

  • missliberties

    Rewriting history at every opportunity.

  • beulahmo

    Jesus. There’s no way that Card could be unaware of his misrepresentations and omissions here. There’s just no way. What a deceitful fucker.

    Carlson very likely hasn’t noticed what’s inaccurate and missing from Card’s characterization, but that’s the problem. Card confirms the biases, so his statements are accepted without question.

    ‘News’ like this is so common it scares me. I think audiences don’t even realize that it’s news personnel’s job to critically scrutinize the accuracy of statements made by their sources. What protection does the audience have from agenda-driven manipulation of news stories except what’s disseminated in the form of ‘adversarial’ or ‘advocacy’ journalism? Because as we’ve seen, there’s no guarantee of clarity provided by adversarial challenges to ‘news’ reporting. (:::cough::: Greenwald :::cough:::)

    • gescove

      Audience? Hell, Chuck Todd said it wasn’t his job to correct misinformation from Republicans. With “journalists” like Chuck Todd, what hope does the audience have?

  • Bud Machado

    Benghazi is a non-issue for Hillary and/or Obama; however, the following is an issue: http://progressive.org/wx030510.html#.Us1gpNxLZEY.twitter

    • beulahmo

      Off topic. If you want to hang out on a thread and trash Clinton’s work as SoS, why don’t you start a blog and do it there?

      • Bud Machado

        The truth needs to be told everywhere, e.g. Hillary supported most of Bill Clinton’s misdeeds like NAFTA, GATT, GLB, TCA, PRWORA, CFMA, ILA. etc.

        • JozefAL

          And when Bill Clinton was President, Hillary was the First Lady. Now remind me, exactly WHAT political powers the First Lady possesses to enable the passage of legislation that the CONGRESS doesn’t want? I’m not going to say I know the Constitution inside and out, but I certainly do remember there’s NO Constitutional provision for the First Lady (hell, there’s nothing that even says the President must be married or have a First Lady).

          Hillary’s support of Clinton’s deeds is completely meaningless, you twit. Don’t forget that Mrs Clinton promoted a meaningful health care program and, um, what exactly happened to that? Oh, right. NOTHING. The ONE major thing that First Lady Hillary Clinton pushed for was trounced. But, for some inane (I might even say “insane”) reason you have it in your feeble mental processes that Hillary’s “support” of any of Bill’s programs should somehow be held against her.

          Seriously–what planet did you come from?

    • D_C_Wilson

      Nobody in this country cared about that story in 2010 when it happened, I doubt they’ll care about in 2016, either.

      • Bud Machado

        In 2016, Hillary will still be a warmongering corporatist.

        • D_C_Wilson

          And it won’t make a bit of difference.

  • MontanaSid

    Fox really should be investigated for inciting terrorism.

  • Dot

    We need to continue to counter their lies. Liars disgust me.

  • aceshigh

    Unbelievable. The conservative movement really is a cancer on this country.

    • beulahmo

      I don’t know which I blame more — the conservative disinformation agents or the state of our lazy, trifling news media.

      • ninjaf

        Blame the media for not doing their job. They are supposed to be adversarial to and skeptical of ALL people in power, no matter their party affiliation. The worst politicians will say and do what they can get away with. With the media derelict in their duties to call them on it, they can get away with a lot.