Top Ten Conservative Idiots (No. 94)
Trent Lott Special
well, well. It should come as no surprise to you that Trent
Lott has set a new record for conservative idiocy this week.
Captain Combover has managed to take up a valuable eight slots
this week, for a variety of different offenses. This doubles
the previous best record, held by George W. Bush at four appearances
in one week. Not only that, but he's got his hands all over
the 9th slot too, which is occupied by People Who Tried To
Cover For Trent Lott. Finally, in tenth place we've got a
round-up of all the idiots who got pushed aside by Trent Racist-Foot-In-Mouth
Lott, so you won't miss anything this week. One final note:
we will be taking a break from publishing during the holiday
period, so this will be the last Top Ten Conservative Idiots
of 2002. Have a great holiday and a Happy New Year, and we'll
see you all again in 2003! (As usual, don't forget the key,
although you might not actually need it this week...)
In last week's Idiots we noted that Trent Lott had made a
pro-segregation comment at Strom Thurmond's 100th birthday
party. And now the Mississippi Hair Helmet may be wishing
that ol' Strom had cashed in his chips before hitting a century.
First out of the blocks to bash Lott's "if the rest of
the country had of followed our lead we wouldn't have had
all these problems over all these years" comment were
Black Caucus and Al
Gore, who last week called the remark "racist"
and suggested that the dubiously-touped Republican leader
should be censured by the Senate. Next came House Minority
Pelosi and a host of commentators
from both the left and the right. Somewhat belatedly, Tom
Daschle and George
W. Bush stepped up to the plate too.
the poop really hit the fan for Lott when it was revealed
last week that his comment was no "misstatement"
or "slip-up" or "throwaway remark." See,
it turns out that our Trent has been harboring these feelings
for some time. Apparently in 1980, as a Mississippi congressman,
he told a political gathering that if the country had elected
segregationist candidate Strom Thurmond to the presidency
"30 years ago, we wouldn't be in the mess we are today,"
to the Washington Post. Sound familiar? The disclosure
prompted a fresh round of criticism from all and sundry, and
Lott's "misstatement" defense fell flat on its ass.
But there was more to come from the bigoted once-and-future-maybe
Senate Majority Leader. Hot on the heels of the 1980 revelation
came news that back in the 1960s, Trent Lott "helped
lead a successful battle to prevent his college fraternity
from admitting blacks to any of its chapters," according
to Time magazine. "Sigma Nu's executive secretary
Richard Fletcher, a legendary figure in the fraternity, pleaded
with the Sigma Nus to find some common ground between those
who wanted to integrate and those who didn't ... But the southerners
were unbending about permitting no exceptions to the all-white
policy. With their chapters threatening a walkout, the fraternity
voted overwhelmingly to remain all-white." Way to go,
Trent! You showed those uppity black folks a thing or too.
Former CNN President and Sigma Nu member Tom Johnson said
of Lott, "Trent was one of the strongest leaders in resisting
the integration of the national fraternity in any of the chapters."
Want more? In 1983 Bob Jones University, the university famous
for its practice of segregation, lost a lawsuit against the
IRS. The IRS had taken away BJU's tax-exempt status because
the school practiced racial discrimination, but BJU thought
that racists ought to be tax-exempt too. A judge disagreed.
So what's this got to do with the Rugmaster himself? Well
if you take a look at the list
of individuals and organizations who filed briefs defending
Bob Jones University's position... why, could that be
Congressman Trent Lott's name? Surely not. Lott said in the
brief that "racial discrimination does not always violate
public policy." Nice.
After it was established that Trent Lott is and always has
been a racist, it was left to the man himself to throw together
a pathetic defense
of his so-called commitment to civil rights. This came to
a sum total of three pages covering a 40 year period. According
to the Washington Post, Lott has "consistently
taken positions at odds with those of the traditional civil
rights community," - for example, voting against establishing
Martin Luther King Day as a federal holiday (Lott quote to
Southern Partisan magazine: "Look at the cost involved
in the Martin Luther King holiday and the fact that we have
not done it for a lot of other people that were more deserving,")
and voting against extending the Voting Rights Act. (Interestingly,
Strom Thurmond voted in favor of both cases.) After throwing
out a couple of tired one-liners on Larry King Live
("Look, you put your foot in your mouth, you're getting carried
away at a ceremony honoring a guy like this, you go too far,")
Lott came up with an even better
excuse: "I was 7 years old when Strom first ran for president.
I don't really remember anything about the campaign." Ri-i-i-ght.
So he had honestly had no idea that Strom Thurmond ran a purely
segregationist presidential campaign. Uh-huh, really. Odd
- he seemed pretty knowledgeable about it when he was waxing
lyrical at Strom's birthday party.
In fact, it's funny how Trent Lott seems to know very little
about the people he supports. For example,
throughout the 1990s he has had close ties to the Council
of Conservative Citizens, a white supremacist organization.
In 1992 he was keynote speaker at the Council's national board
meeting where he announced that, "the people in this room
stand for the right principles and the right philosophy,"
in 1997 he hosted a private meeting for the Council's leaders,
and for eight years he wrote a column for the CCC's magazine.
And yet when he he was challenged, he claimed that he had
"no firsthand knowledge" of the CCC's activities. Perhaps
he should have consulted
his uncle, who is an executive of the CCC, and his cousin,
who is a member. Incidentally, the CCC last week announced
that Trent Lott spoke the truth, and should be commended.
They also suggested that black people should be sent
back to Africa.
Unfortunately, Lott's desperate attempt to "clarify"
his comments by calling a press conference in Trent-friendly
Mississippi (the press corps applauded before and after the
conference - how's that for fair and balanced?) seem to have
failed. Over the weekend his deputy, Sen. Don Nickles, called
for a new vote for party leader. Of course Nickles is the
obvious choice to replace Lott, so it's no wonder he called
for a a new vote. But bearing in mind that if the Senate Republicans
vote for Trent to stay on as leader they will essentially
be endorsing his comments, the Rugmaster's days could well
And it's also no wonder that Bush was pissed at Trent Lott.
By showing the Republican party for what it is, Lott's blatant
racism has put a big dent in all of Bush and Rove's efforts
to woo the black community with their so-called "compassionate
conservatism." As MSNBC reported
last week, "Lott may hold onto his job as the new Senate
majority leader, but the damage has already been done."
In light of Don Nickles comments, Lott may struggle to hold
onto his job. But if he had one single shred of decency, he
would have stepped down immediately.
Who Tried To Cover For Trent Lott
Anyone with half a brain knows that Trent Lott's comments
were racist, plain and simple. Which is why it was so disturbing
when so many politicians and commentators came out in his
defense. Sean Hannity was the number one culprit, spending
the whole week on his show trying to deflect the blame onto
other parties - that is, Democrats - arguing that there was
double-standard. According to Hannity, old-school Democrats
got a free pass from the media despite their anti-civil rights
backgrounds. Unfortunately for Sean, those Democrats all renounced
their past behavior many, many years ago and have since developed
decent civil rights voting records. The worst offender in
the race to blame anyone but Trent was newsmax.com, who complained
bitterly that the press never said anything when it was alleged
that Roger Clinton, wayward brother of Bill, used the "N"
word on a police surveillance tape in 1984. Perhaps if Roger
Clinton were Senate Majority Leader the story would have gotten
more press coverage, you morons.
And finally: there was a lot of Lott this week, so here are
some links to the other conservative idiots we didn't have
time to cover: Michael
Keene, son of one of the members of the board of directors
of the National Rifle Association was arrested for committing
a road rage shooting... Henry
Kissinger resigned from the 9/11 commission rather than
reveal his list of clients... Rush
Limbaugh was left stumbling and bumbling after a sneak
attack from a liberal caller... GOP
leaders are clamping down to make sure that house members
toe the conservative line... The
Secret Service questioned a high school student because
he was wearing a "not my president" T-shirt... Donald
Rumsfeld admitted that he met with Saddam Hussein twice
in the 1980s... George
W. Bush wants to speed up logging... The GAO is widening
its enquiry of Janet
Rehnquist... Bush's pick to head the SEC, William
Donaldson, is quite the shady character... and, according
to the entirely unreliable WorldNetDaily, Georgia
legislators will introduce a bill early next month that
refers to abortion as an ''execution'' and will require any
mother seeking an abortion to go to court to obtain a death
NOTE: We are taking a break from publishing articles
during the holiday period (our message board will still be
open, of course) so there will not be a new Top Ten until
January 13, 2003. Have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year!
a Conservative for Next Week's List
We fixed the bug.)