Roseanne Barr is the libertarian left’s answer to Victoria Jackson: she was popular on TV years ago, mostly for one very specific brand of shtick, but somewhere along the line willfully gave up entertaining people in favor of being a rabid political ideologue, loud-mouthed crusader, and reliable dispensary of ridiculous crap. For the most part she’s harmless, mostly because nobody much cares what she has to say these days, but there’s still something fascinating about watching a person who was once a huge celebrity, beloved by millions, basically go off the deep end and descend publicly into utter madness. Maybe it’s because it’s so rare that we get to witness something like that, given how controlled the lives of most stars are, even after they’ve moved on past their heyday.
Roseanne’s departure from reality isn’t as entertaining as, say, Tom Cruise’s mental breakdown a few years back, mostly because Cruise was still at the top of his game at the time and his conscious decision to take a hammer to his carefully crafted good-guy image was the result of reaching levels of Scientology so stratospheric that he actually believed he could control people’s minds so it wouldn’t matter anyway. No, Roseanne’s is a run-of-the-mill “awakening” to what’s supposedly really going on around us, combined with the standard Hollywood arrogance that would make somebody think he or she is uniquely qualified to alert the masses to this great truth. Live the insulated life of a wealthy celebrity long enough and you literally make yourself crazy looking for something to worry about — hence, we get Roseanne running for president as the “Peace and Freedom Party” candidate.
So a couple of days ago, Roseanne posted an “Open Letter To Congress” on her personal website. At first blush, the thing looks like it’s merely going to be another Evil Obama screed coupled with demands that Congress do something to rein the president in. Because as you know, a good portion of it has done nothing of the sort over the past five years. But what starts with the usual anti-NSA, pro-Constitution hyperbole, quickly descends into — well, let’s just let you read for yourself. Here’s the opening shot:
I write this letter urging you to stop the dictatorship initiated in the Executive Branch. The White House under Obama has made direct attacks against the 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th amendments to the Constitution. These acts include the attack on whistleblowers, contriving false flag terror attacks to remove the 2nd amendment (Boston Marathon; case in point), NSA Spying Scandal, and murdering innocent people with drones. Obama has shown utter contempt for the Constitution and the Rule of Law, however it is the cowardice of Congress that makes these things possible.
“Boston Marathon; case in point.” There you have it.
What follows is, I kid you not, a seemingly cocaine-fueled, tin-foil hatted fever dream filled with references to Nazis and fascists and which all leads to a singular — and singularly insane — argument: that Congress is specifically being spied on by the Obama-era NSA and the information gleaned from that spying is being used to blackmail members of the legislative branch into doing Obama’s bidding. Congress, of course, knows about all of this — but won’t do anything about it.
But don’t worry, Roseanne has some suggestions on what can be done:
Some of you in the congress live alternative lifestyles. Some of you cheat on your spouses. Why should the camera only be pointed on you?- it’s time the camera was pointed on Obama. It’s also puzzling that the Congress hasn’t set up its own intelligence agency loyal to the Congress and not the Executive.
It gets better. Like 41 pages of “footnotes” better — all detailing a supposed litany of blackmail plots against Congress initiated by the Obama administration and perhaps even involving George W. Bush (although I get the feeling Roseanne doesn’t realize that some of the dates she rattles off happen to be pre-Obama) and almost all sourced to batshit crazy internet conspiracy theorist Wayne Madsen.
I’d post quotes from these footnotes, but seriously, the whole fucking thing makes my head hurt. If you’re interested in seeing, however, just how deeply into the abyss someone who was once held up as a cultural icon can go, I can’t recommend enough reading the “letter” for yourself. A couple of the “articles” Roseanne cites as sources:
August 10, 2009 — SPECIAL REPORT. The Congresswoman and the Turkish Lobby sexual blackmail ring
December 29-31, 2008 — SPECIAL REPORT. Intelligence and blackmail of U.S. politicians
June 17, 2010 — Obama’s gay trysts confirmed again by senior congressional source
February 1, 2013 — Answer to Lindsey Graham’s question to Chuck Hagel (which claims that the Mossad has gay pictures of Lindsey Graham)
Roseanne’s last book, by the way, was subtitled “Dispatches from the Nutfarm.”
I offer that little nugget without further comment.
Chez Pazienza was the beating heart of The Daily Banter, sadly passing away on February 25, 2017. His voice remains ever present at the Banter, and his influence as powerful as ever.