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Best of Banter: Ted Cruz on Gay Marriage, Melting Ice Caps, Chuck Norris and Staking Out the White House

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From the river of B.S. spilling out of Ted Cruz's mouth to the apocalyptic news that melting Antarctic ice sheets will cause 10-foot sea level rises by the end of the century, Banter staff have you covered with enough paddles to navigate your way through the deluge.

Here's the week that was, at The Daily Banter.

What Ted Cruz Said About Gay Marriage Shows He’s Unfit For Any Office


Legislators don't need to be constitutional scholars to do their jobs. But Banter's Mike Luciano tackles a real doozy of a rant from Ted Cruz' radio interview with Iowa "nutter" Jan Mickelson on the constitutional threat posed by the gays that is so full of misinformation and ignorance that it's hard to imagine Cruz is qualified for any office.

"You have to admire this," Mike writes. "Not because it’s true, but because it’s so spectacularly not true. It’s like doing 100 mph in a 55 and then telling the cop who pulls you over you have no idea why you’re on the side of the road."

In another post, Mike covers how Cruz terrified a little girl at a town hall meeting by telling her "the world is on fire."

Netanyahu’s Spiral Into Crazy Town Ends With a Chuck Norris Campaign Ad

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Unfortunately, Netanyahu is widely recognized as having won the Israeli elections - but not before Chuck Norris filmed this incoherent, rambling PSA endorsing the prime minister as the only thing standing between Israel and an Iranian-launched nuclear holocaust. There's nothing that makes sense about this other than the fact that Netanyahu now seems to be running for prime minister of Tea Partistan rather than his own country, but we can at least laugh at Norris' irrelevance and willingness to pander to anyone to the right of the John Birch Society.

"Somehow, I doubt the endorsement of the Lone Ranger will change the ayatollahs’ minds," I write. "A young Chuck Norris might be shot to death trying to infiltrate an Iranian nuclear facility. Current-day Chuck Norris might have a heart attack on the way to the airport."

MEMBERS ONLY: The Best Stakeout Ever

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Banter's own Tommy Christopher has a real, insider-y treat for you: a walkthrough of what a White House stakeout looks like. No, that's not when you try to catch the POTUS sneaking out for some late-night delight - it's what happens when journalists congregate to catch off-the-cuff statements from legislators, corporate leaders and various activists and representatives emerge from meetings with the president. Tommy tells the story of catching a statement from BP Chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg, including sticking a camera in his face. Solid, interesting stuff.

Fox News’s Brian Kilmeade Is Apparently Terrified of Me

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There are probably plenty of reasons to be terrified of Banter's Chez Pazienza, but Fox News' Brian Kilmeade didn't even think of one of the good ones. Instead, he put out a quivering and cowardly justification for racial discrimination by saying he was equally scared of "raunchy"-looking black guys in hoodies and "a white guy with tattoos all over him, and a nose ring."

What is Brian Kilmeade, like, 12? Chez notes that aside from the sheer hilarity of imagining "Kilmeade walking back and forth across the street over and over again like a game of Douchebag Frogger to avoid people who scare him," it's also important to understand that he is an idiot incapable of understanding that "anyone not dressed like the finest and most upstanding person white America" is not a "potential threat."

Medical Molly: It’s Time To Feel Good About MDMA Therapy

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As someone that freely admits to having done a lot of drugs in the past, Chez's advocacy of MDMA as a therapeutic substance takes on a personal tone as he describes the positive effect the drug had on his life, from connecting with others to undergoing spiritual experiences. While ecstasy has gotten a bad rap thanks to media stereotypes of bombed-out teenagers sweating themselves to death at techno concerts, Chez makes an effective case in favor of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies' newly-approved trial to use MDMA as method of treating anxiety in PTSD-ridden veterans.

Republican Party Now So Ridiculous Conservatives Are Not Worth Debating Anymore

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Banter editor Ben Cohen annotates his recent appearance on the Thom Hartmann show to explain just how and why he came to the conclusion that America's conservative movement is no longer worth debating. Since the default GOP position has become "Obama is bad, therefore anything he does is bad," Ben writes, "My default position is then to defend Obama, which I am getting fairly sick of doing." Ben discusses his frustration with the current political environment, emphasizing the fact that right-wing pundits have now become so extreme that liberals who take any position other than relentlessly defending the president feel like traitors.

That Melting Antarctic Glacier Isn’t Nearly Enough to Snap Us Out of Our Climate Apathy


Bob Cesca offers a depressing vision of a future in which the planet is wrecked by humanity's sheer apathy and recklessness towards the environment. Climatologists are raising the alarm about 10-foot sea level rises within 100 years thanks to the melting of the Antarctic, yet no one is doing anything. In fact, Bob notes, just 1% of Americans list the environment as their most important political issue. Given that 10 more feet of water would obliterate most of America's coastal cities, this is incredibly alarming and sad.

MEMBERS ONLY: ‘Prison Architect’ Is a Video Game Whose Gameplay Is All Too Real


If you're lucky, you'll never see the inside of a correctional facility. But you can come somewhat close with Prison Architect, a video game that presents gamers with the disturbing challenge of managing a high-security prison system and mainly provides them with tools of brute force and suppression to do the job. It's both a devious intellectual challenge and a morbid commentary on the extensive prison-industrial complex, where profits are valued more than the dignity of the humans passing through it.