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Thu Sep 15, 2022, 05:00 PM

Top 10 Conservative Idiots #13-7: It's The End Of Democracy As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) Edition


Top 10 Conservative Idiots #13-7: It’s The End Of Democracy As We Know It (And I Feel Fine) Edition

Welcome back to the Top 10 Conservative Idiots! YOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! What’s up, Las Veags? How you guys doing? You doing fucking good? Great! We’re hanging out at the MGM…. Somewhere in this giant labyrinth of a casino! But no specifically we’re at Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club which is an excellent venue in Vegas. Last time we were here we were at the Dragon Room, which is another great Vegas comedy club. But we’re hitting the ground running for this season and we’ve got editions coming the next 5 weeks! And don’t forget we will be breaking out the Wheel Of Corruption again when we hit Denver on October 6th to help celebrate the return of the Great American Beer Festival! Also, don’t forget we’ll have the wheel in Riversie and again at our show in Mexico when we hit Cabo. How about that? Ok enough of my rambling, do we have time for the thing? Of course we do! OK look it’s film festival season. I get it – you saw a great movie. Do we really need a contest to see who can stand and clap the longest? It started when the Elvis movie got a 12 minute standing O at Cannes. But then it happened again when the Marilyn Monroe flick “Blonde” got a 14 minute standing O. Then it happened again when Brendan Fraser’s flick “The Whale” got a 9 minute standing ovation. Come on stop it, people! Look it’s one thing to get a standing ovation, but this recent trend of timing how long they are is insane. We may have to do a deep dive on this for next week’s I Need A Drink. But just… how… who… what??? Has it really been two years since we’ve been at a film festival? Sigh, anyways, things are getting really weird. OK enough of the intro, we have a lot of idiocy to get to, but first John Oliver delves into the subject of Law & Order and its’ actual effects on America’s legal system:



Well, where do we begin this week? Sadly, the world lost a truly great leader as Queen Elizabeth II died at age 96. While the world is paying their respects, naturally the group of idiots here at home are paying theirs, and it’s about exactly what you’d expect from these clowns. In the second slot this week is the Supreme Court (2). On the SCOTUS chopping block in the next term is a little unheard of case that could fundamentally destroy the integrity of US elections as we know them, Moore V Harper, and we will tell you all about it! We also can predict exactly how the MAGA SCOTUS is going to vote on this one. in the third slot this week is Florida MAGA judge Aileen Cannon (3) who, despite all actual judgement, allowed that former president to appoint a “special master” in yet another attempt to avoid any actual criminal charges being filed. It’s a conspiracy! In the number 4 seed this week is Steve Bannon (4). Yes, Steve Bannon is going to prison after bilking MAGA stooges out of their money in that fake Build The Wall charity and we’re enjoying every minute of it! In the number 5 slot this week is that Former President (5) and last week Obama finally got his portrait in the White House after Shithead denied it, and it’s great seeing competence back in the White House! In the number 6 slot this week is our weekly visit to the Holy Church Of The Top 10 in “Holy Shit” and this week our resident pastor was alarmed that a right wing nationalist billionaire decided to give megachurches a $2 billion reward for helping the efforts to overturn Roe V Wade, so we decided to do some digging on who benefits, and we sure don’t! In the number 7 slot this week is a new Beating A Dead Horse (7) and we’ve been saying since the very beginning of this segment that toxic fandom in movies and TV shows, particularly among major franchises, is something of a problem. But lately it seems to be getting worse and the targeted harassment is more than just a “this movie / TV show sucks” argument. It’s something much worse! In the number 8 slot this week is a new Conspiracy Corner (8) and if you think that right wing reactions to the Queen’s death were crazy, wait until you see what the Q Anon reactions are! In the number 9 (NEIN!!!) slot this week we have a new People Are Dumb, because of course they are! Finally this week, it’s time for the World Tour 2022 Destination #6 and this week we’re going to the land of exotic villas, fast cars, and the best pasta dishes in the world – Italy! Enjoy! And as always don’t forget the key!

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[font size="8"]Insane Reactions To Queen Elizabeth II’s Death
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You know I’d like to extend the proverbial olive branch to our friends in the UK. Because let’s face it, Queen Elizabeth II was a hell of a leader, and her legacy may never be topped. But you know, this entry will not be about whether we love or hate the monarchy. We’ll save that for a future edition. No! Here’s the thing – we’re not making fun of the Queen’s death in this entry. No, we’re making fun of the American reactions to the Queen’s death. Because let’s face it, we have some insensitive douchebags in this country and that’s putting it lightly! Last week’s edition in fact, the reason why we didn’t have any news about the Queen is that it happened right when we were going live. However, like I said, we have some insensitive fuckwads in the US. Because while most of us were mourning the loss of Queen Elizabeth, Q Anon folks had an entirely different take. And oh yes it gets weird. These are some truly deranged, sick and twisted fuck heads we’re dealing with here.

Despite spending years claiming she’d already been executed, QAnon on Thursday openly celebrated the news of Queen Elizabeth’s death.

“May she burn in hell for eternity,” one QAnon account on Telegram wrote moments after the queen’s death was announced. “So happy! The evil witch is dead,’ another wrote.

For years, the queen has been a central figure in the QAnon conspiracy as part of a cast of elites who followers believe are operating a child sex trafficking ring that traverses the globe.

In the hours before her death, some referenced wild QAnon conspiracies about the queen participating in satanic rituals and drinking the blood of children: “They’re preparing the black mass and baby buffet as we sit here,” adding, “I think you’ll find she’s already gone.”
https://www.vice.com/en/article/dy7d5k/qanon-queen-elizabeth-ii




Yeah really, we’re with Shaq on this one! If you think that’s weird, wait until you see what Q Anon thinks that King Charles did in his first act! Do these idiots not know that the Queen and most of the Royal Family hated Trump:? But this might be my favorite thing is that usually heads of state are invited to weddings and/or funerals involving Royal Family members. Joe Biden got an invite and he’s in. There’s one guy however, that didn’t get an invite. And he’s fuming mad.

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman says that former President Donald Trump was surprised that he did not receive a personal invitation to the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

Speaking on CNN Tuesday morning, Haberman was asked by host John Berman about Trump's reaction to not being invited to the funeral, which will be attended by President Joe Biden later this week.

"Trump and people around Trump believe he had some sort of special connection to the queen," she replied. "There's, for some reason, some expectation around people close to Trump that he should be getting an invitation. He fancied himself as having some kind of close relationship with her. A former aide to Trump told me, 'No, the queen really liked him.'"

However, Haberman said she had heard of no concrete proof that the late queen liked Trump, whom she met when the former president visited the United Kingdom in 2019.
https://www.rawstory.com/queen-elizabeth-trump/




Yeah that’s basically Trump’s reaction in a nutshell. It must seriously suck to live in an alternate universe from him. Hey Trump, let me spell it out for you: YOU ARE HATED! NOBODY LIKES YOU! YOU ARE THE WORST PRESIDENT IN AMERICAN HISTORY!! Only your deranged cultists still support you! Oh and it gets weirder. So much weirder. Trump apparently attempted to invite himself to attend the Queen’s funeral and right wing media went along with it. There were some truly insane discussions on Fox News, but the answer direct from the Royal Family was a big fat “no”.

Answering questions aboard Air Force One on September 12, 2022, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre confirmed the White House had only received an invitation for President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden.

"So, the invitation for the president and the first lady came in the form of a note sent by the protocol directorate of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office," Jean-Pierre said.

"It was received late Saturday night and as you all know the president accepted the invitation on Sunday morning and, [in] so far as invites, I would refer you to the United Kingdom, their government, on that protocol generally.

"The invitation... extended to the U.S. government was for the president and the first lady only."

When asked whether Biden, if allowed, would bring former presidents to the funeral, Jean-Pierre said "this is a
https://www.newsweek.com/fact-check-donald-trump-not-invited-queen-elizabeth-iis-funeral-1742444




Yes! That’s exactly what it must be like! Now the reactions around the world are pouring in, and it varies depending on who you talk to. But as we’ve seen here in America, we have some insensitive douchebags who are shooting their mouth off. World leaders have had a mixed bag of reactions, and we can’t post them all here. Everyone from Bill Clinton to Emmanuel Macron to Angela Merkel have expressed their views on the Queen, as have celebrities and musicians like Daniel Craig, Elton John, Paul McCartney, and Mick Jagger. And then there’s Howard Stern. Who does make a point but really it’s the wrong time.

Radio host Howard Stern fumed over what he deemed the excessive media coverage of the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

On the Monday edition of SiriusXM’s The Howard Stern Show, the host let loose on the fact that news outlets have seemingly ditched the story of former President Donald Trump housing classified documents at his Florida home in favor of coverage of the queen’s death.

“It’s weird traditions and everything. And I’m like, Jesus, enough with the Queen! I mean, it’s America. We don’t have a queen. I get it. You know, Queen was a nice lady, I guess she was born, you know, my whole life, the queen has been the same queen and there’s a tradition there and she did her duty to her country. I get it. I get it. I get it. But we gotta get back to Trump and where those papers are that they found that Mar-A-Lago,” he said.

“You don’t like the distraction of the queen?” co-host Robin Quivers asked.

“No, it’s like annoying. It’s like, everyone wants to hear about Trump. Trump 24/7,” Stern said. “I mean, he, you know, it’s so weird. I knew Donald for so many years, not in touch with him now, obviously, but the only thing that I used to say about Donald — the guy just wants to be the focus of attention. He wants the whole world looking at him and the son of a gun — If he didn’t make that happen, it’s unbelievable. He got his wish.”
https://www.mediaite.com/trump/jesus-enough-with-the-queen-howard-stern-fumes-over-annoying-media-coverage-of-monarchs-passing/





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[font size="8"]The Supreme Court
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If you haven’t seen last week’s edition, we touched base on Biden’s speech on MAGA extremists and how they could destroy democracy in an election cycle or two if we’re not careful. Well, forget the elections, the fate of democracy could boil down to one single upcoming SCOTUS case. There’s some big name cases coming up in the upcoming SCOTUS sessions, and while many are talking about SCOTUS eroding rights like gay marriage, interracial marriage, and hell I’ve even heard them talk about overturning Brown V. Board Of Education, but that one may be a conservative pipe dream. But there’s one upcoming SCOTUS case that could have some catastrophic consequences for American elections depending on the way they rule on this, and given their recent history, we can probably kiss fair elections goodbye. But that being said, conservatives are going about this in the same manner that Wiley Coyote attempts to catch the Road Runner.

...At the heart of the case, according to SCOTUS blog, is the legal theory called "independent state legislature doctrine," which suggests that, under the Constitution's election clause, "only the legislature has the power to regulate federal elections, without interference from state courts."

"The theory would disable state courts from protecting voting rights in federal elections by eliminating state constitutional protections in those elections," Legal experts Leah Litman, Kate Shaw and Carolyn Shapiro wrote of the case in an opinion piece for The Washington Post. "And it would do so at a time when voting rights are under attack, including at the Supreme Court itself."

Under the most strict readings of the doctrine, provisions in state constitutions which restrain lawmakers' from influencing elections would be rolled back. The governor, who could usually veto new election laws, would lose the ability to do so and state courts would be unable to reverse anti-democratic laws or challenge gerrymandered districts.

This interpretation of the constitution "could make it easier for state legislatures to suppress the vote, draw unfair election districts, enable partisan interference in ballot counting," the Brennan Center for Justice tweeted about the case...

https://www.businessinsider.com/what-is-moore-v-harper-supreme-court-case-voting-rights-2022-7




Yes, holy shit indeed! So let’s explain this a bit – the case is a simple redistricting case, but it’s one of those things that we say is like peeling an onion. The more layers you peel back, the more it stinks, and the more likely you are to cry as a result. Because while it may seem like a simple redistricting case, the layers are a lot more complex. Basically the high courts would have the power to redraw district maps for their state. And if the high court approves this, it would basically give whoever is in charge of the state judiciary the power to rig elections. That could be catastrophic!

A conference of chief justices, including Missouri's top state judge, and Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft have gotten involved in a U.S. Supreme Court case that could drastically change how elections are conducted.

The case, Moore v. Harper, is based out of North Carolina. Republicans in the state are asking the Supreme Court to allow a congressional redistricting plan rejected by their state court, citing what is called the "independent state legislature doctrine." If the theory is recognized by the high court, it could give state lawmakers the final say over how elections are conducted and district maps are drawn, without court review.

Ashcroft and a group of top judicial officials that includes Missouri Chief Justice Paul C. Wilson appear to see the controversial case differently, based on written arguments recently submitted to the high court.

Ashcroft, a Republican, cites the Tenth Amendment in a brief arguing that "in Missouri, the state constitution states that congressional district lines are to be drawn by the state legislature; therefore, we need to keep the federal government out of Missouri elections."
https://www.news-leader.com/story/news/politics/2022/09/08/top-state-judges-including-missouri-weigh-scotus-elections-case-jay-ashcroft/8014653001/




Yeah BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Let’s call this “It’s The End Of Democracy As We Know It”. Come on sing it with me! It’s the end of democracy as we know it! it’s the end of democracy as we know it! It’s the end of democracy as we know it! And I feel fine! Yeah I can’t sing for shit but you know how it is! But here’s the thing – we know that the GOP can’t win unless they cheat. And this latest fight – which once again they started – is yet another one that they started. Because they know that the political climate in this country is changing, and it’s changing against them. So they are doing whatever they can to hold onto what little power they have left.

One of the biggest cases on the Supreme Court’s docket next term is Moore v. Harper. At its core, it is yet another fight over North Carolina’s congressional maps. But this is one that will likely have far reaching effects beyond the state’s boundaries.

Boiled down to its essence, Republicans in North Carolina are pushing the nation’s highest court to invalidate a state court’s redistricting decision under a constitutional interpretation referred to as the “independent state legislature” theory. The theory revolves around the Elections Clause of the Constitution, which reads that “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof,” subject to regulations from Congress.

Proponents of the ISL theory argue that that wording — an explicit mention of a “legislature,” and not the judiciary — means there is little, or no, role for the state judges to check the election-related decisions of state legislators. Many prominent election scholars and voting rights groups, however, say that could mark a dramatic remaking of America’s election laws resulting in a consolidation of power in the hands of state legislatures. It could, for example, give them near-unchecked authority to draw political boundaries in the favor of one political party, or pass more strident requirements around registration or voting practices without a way to challenge them in state court.
https://www.politico.com/newsletters/politico-nightly/2022/09/09/the-court-case-that-could-transform-u-s-elections-00055997




So yeah, think about it. American democracy and free and fair elections are literally hanging on by a thread. Biden wasn’t wrong to call out MAGA extremism. Because the extremists are the ones trying to rig elections. And if we’re not careful, they may get their wish. Especially with the highest court in the land currently stacked against us. The fate of this country may be decided by a drunken rapist and a deranged cultist. And given their recent history on rulings, you know they’re not going to be using their powers for good. Sleep tight everybody, we’re going to be in for a hell of a ride! Come on sing it with me! It’s the end of democracy as we know it…

A group representing the top judges in all 50 states is urging the U.S. Supreme Court not to shield actions taken by state legislatures affecting federal elections - such as reconfiguring electoral districts and imposing voting restrictions - from the scrutiny of state courts.

The bipartisan Conference of Chief Justices filed the brief on Tuesday in a closely watched case involving a map drawn by the Republican-led North Carolina legislature of the state's 14 U.S. House of Representatives districts. The state's top court struck down the map on Feb. 4, concluding that the districts were crafted in a manner intentionally biased against Democrats, diluting their "fundamental right to equal voting power."

The Conference of Chief Justices argued that the U.S. Constitution does not prevent state courts from reviewing such congressional maps for violations of state constitutions, as the Republican state legislators defending the map argue.

The North Carolina Supreme Court rejected the Republican arguments seeking to exempt U.S. congressional electoral maps from legal review in state courts. A lower state court on Feb. 23 rejected a redrawn map submitted by the legislature and instead adopted a different map drawn by a bipartisan group of experts.
https://www.reuters.com/legal/top-state-court-judges-defend-their-election-oversight-us-supreme-court-2022-09-07/





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[font size="8"]Florida MAGA Judge
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Why am I not at all surprised that Florida is involved here? The MAGAs are just constantly making one excuse after another as to why they keep putting Asshole 45 up on a pedestal. It’s seriously like America’s march towards a religious fascist totalitarian regime is inevitable whether we want it or not, like Ragnarok or something. Maybe Ragnarok is a bad comparison. Or is it? Well for those of you who follow Norse mythology, or maybe you just watched Thor: Ragnarok, but Raganrok is the inevitable destruction of Asguard when the skull of the mythical being known as Surtur is placed atop the eternal flame and turns into a giant flaming monster that destroys the whole world. Well, if we use that analogy, you could say that Trump is the inevitable flaming monster that’s going to destroy America, and a judge in Florida may have just placed his skull atop the eternal flame. Or maybe not. Maybe it’s accelerating placing him atop the eternal flame.

The best thing one can say about Judge Aileen Cannon’s decision Monday appointing a special master to review the documents seized from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort is that it’s not the end of the world: the Justice Department can continue its investigation of Donald Trump’s apparent theft and retention of highly sensitive defense-related documents, at least those that weren’t seized in the August 6 search. The Washington Post reported that those documents included nuclear secrets of other nations.

It can also continue to investigate his efforts to overturn the presidential election, culminating in his role in the violent insurrection of January 6, keeping in mind the historic holding of a New Mexico state court this September 6 that the 14th Amendment bars all who played such a role from ever again holding public office in the United States.

That said, Cannon’s ruling has to rank high in the annals of the worst reasoned judicial decisions in American history. Even former Trump Attorney General Bill Barr called it “deeply flawed.” If it signals that judicial Trumpism has spread more broadly than we thought, there may be danger ahead to our entire system of equal justice.

Apart from its abysmal reasoning, her ruling gives the Justice Department no good options. The need to prosecute Trump as soon as possible after this November’s midterm elections points to avoiding the delay an appeal could cause and just moving forward with the special master’s document review.
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/the-trump-special-master-ruling-violates-the-principle-that-no-one-is-above-the-law/ar-AA11ym25




Yeah BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Think of this as like attempting to write your own get out of jail free card. Yeah you can try but only the Monopoly gods are the ones that really hold the cards! OK yeah bad analogy. But you can’t deny that this is certifiably insane. And yes in case you’re wondering about the judge’s credentials, Aileen Cannon is utterly, laughably unqualified to be a federal judge. Her qualifications? She’s a Federalist society appointee whose only credentials we can tell are that she speaks MAGA and was reamed through when Trump appointed all those judges back in 2017, that’s about it.

On Thursday, the Department of Justice announced it would appeal Judge Aileen Cannon’s indefensible order blocking the criminal investigation into the classified documents seized from Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago last month until a special master can review them. The department also put Cannon on the spot by asking her to stay her order pending appeal, but only as to those 100-plus classified documents. It was a shrewd move that will help protect our national security and hopefully assure the success of the larger appeal.

First, as we noted in our Slate op-ed initially reacting to the judge’s decision, the single most disturbing part of Judge Cannon’s order was always its application to classified documents. Don’t get us wrong, none of the thousands of government documents at issue belong to a former president under the terms of the Presidential Records Act or the well-established rules of executive privilege, as the government points out in its brief.

But classified materials are in a category by themself. Federal law expressly says as much. As DOJ points out in its filing, classified information must be “owned by, produced by or for, or [be] under the control of the United States [g]overnment.” One of the authors, Eisen, helped write Executive Order 13526, the order issued by President Barack Obama which articulates that principle and which the government cites in its motion to Judge Cannon for a partial stay. The special status of classified documents is also rooted in the case law, including the seminal precedent in this area, Nixon v. GSA. It held that only the current president can assert executive privilege relating to “state secrets and sensitive information concerning military or diplomatic matters.” Many additional laws and rules apply to the handling of such materials, including that they be stored in or utilized in special, secure government locations. A former president’s heavily trafficked resort is certainly not one of them.

Nor is there any reason to believe that these materials were declassified, as Trump and his allies have claimed in public media without foundation. Notably, his lawyers made no such claims in their court papers, which they signed pursuant to legal penalties if they make false statements of facts or law. In its motion on Thursday, the DOJ notes this fact and practically dares Trump’s attorneys to attempt to assert before the court the former president’s public claims that those documents were declassified.
https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2022/09/mar-a-lago-appeal-snooker-trump-judge-cannon.html




Yeah BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! OK let’s go over her qualifications again. 39 years old. And a member of the Federalist society and a deranged Christian cult. No legal experience whatsoever. Gets a fucking LIFETIME APPOINTMENT because she speaks MAGA and kisses the right asses. And will do their every evil bidding. Just…. AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Is the MAGA world trying to run a kakistocracy here? I just can’t even fathom what reality shit like this is happening, and it shouldn’t be happening in this one we’re currently living in! Come on, you know that you fucked up when Bill Bar says you fucked up!

Former Attorney General William Barr on Tuesday said the decision by a Florida judge to grant former President Donald Trump’s request for a special master to review the documents seized by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago is “deeply flawed” and urged the Justice Department to appeal it.

“The opinion, I think, was wrong, and I think the government should appeal it. It’s deeply flawed in a number of ways,” Barr said during a Fox interview Tuesday.

“I don’t think the appointment of a special master is going to hold up – but even if it does, I don’t see it fundamentally changing the trajectory. In other words, I don’t think it changes the ball game so much as maybe we’ll have a rain delay for a couple of innings.”

Trump-appointed District Judge Aileen Cannon on Monday ordered that a third-party attorney be brought in to review the materials that were taken from Trump’s home and resort in Florida. The order also halts the Justice Department from continuing its review of the materials seized from Mar-a-Lago “pending completion of the special master’s review or further Court order.”
https://www.cnn.com/2022/09/06/politics/bill-barr-special-master-doj-trump/index.html




Oh come on now, here’s where it gets weird and you knew it was going to. So you might be asking yourself, if Trump can get away with this shit, can the people who participated in the insurrection and attempted to storm the Capitol on January 6th? And the answer is? Maybe. And it’s a huge “maybe” at that. Because the leader of the Oath Keepers, Stewart Rhodes, is attempting to write his own ‘get out of jail free’ card in the attempt to stall these trials until well after the midterm elections. Seriously, how much is a plane ticket to New Zealand? I give up sometimes.

The leader of the Oath Keepers has asked a federal judge to appoint a special master to manage the massive amount of evidence in the January 6 investigation, according to a motion filed in federal court on Tuesday.

Elmer Stewart Rhodes is charged with conspiracy to commit sedition along with nine other members of the group, including two from Central Florida – Kenneth Harrelson of Titusville and Kelly Meggs of Dunnellon.

[TRENDING: Florida man accused of using fake deeds to take ownership of 2 homes | Hurricane center watching 2 tropical waves. Here’s what to know | Enter to win Kroger grocery gift card | Become a News 6 Insider (it’s free!)]

According to the motion filed in federal court in Washington, D.C., Rhodes claims he cannot be ready for his trial, which is slated to begin in two weeks.

His attorney claims Rhodes has had only seven months to prepare for trial, and even the preparation has been challenged.
https://www.clickorlando.com/news/local/2022/09/13/oath-keepers-leader-wants-special-master-appointed-trial-delayed/





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[font size="8"]Steve Bannon
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I don’t know about you, but I am personally loving watching Trump’s inner circle implode. First Alex Jones got his ass handed to him by the mass shooting victims he demonized. Now Steve Bannon is about to go to prison. Gee, where will Marjorie Greene complain to now? But only in MAGA bizarro world where bad is good and good is bad, does shit like this happen. Like dude, you’re getting arrested for money laundering – and somehow it’s the best day of your life and you’re “totally in the zone”? And seriously, what the fuck does being “in the zone” mean? Was I watching someone get arrested or was I watching someone enter the octagon for a UFC fight? These people are just absolutely bonkers, but that’s the kind of mind Trump attracts. I guess that the MAGA world has got to have something to complain about in the 1,000,000 right wing podcasts that pollute the social media landscape. But there’s something definitely wrong with Mr. Bannon if this is his hot take after getting arrested. But then again, if you’re here, you probably already knew that. I just wish these morons would go away. Although if you tell them to go away, that just gives them an excuse to get in your face more.

Steve Bannon, who was arrested earlier this week in connection with a scheme to build a border wall on the US-Mexico border, said the experience of being handcuffed marked one of his favorite days.

"It was a very powerful, spiritual day for me," he said in a segment of conservative pundit Charlie Kirk's podcast on Friday. "A lot of things came into high clarity."

He then called the event "one of the best days of my life."

"I was totally in the zone — as you say in sports — the entire time. They're not gonna shut me up," he continued.

Bannon, who served as an advisor to former President Donald Trump in the White House, was indicted Thursday on money laundering and conspiracy charges in connection to his role in the "We Build the Wall" organization, as Insider's Laura Italiano reported.
https://www.businessinsider.com/steve-bannon-said-arrest-one-of-best-days-of-life-2022-9




Yeah keep talking, doesn’t necessarily mean anyone will listen to you. I mean look at this program, we’ve been doing this thing for over 5 years and we’re still headlining the 2:00 PM slot at the chuckle hut! But we don’t speak conservative crazy which is why we’re not selling out Staples Center anytime soon. But what’s even weirder about this is that the more you read about it, the more it almost feels like Mr. Bannon actually wanted to get arrested for something. Does it mean more people will listen to him and Marjorie Three Names whine about Biden relentlessly? Maybe.

Former top Trump White House advisor Steve Bannon was criminally charged in New York on Thursday with a scheme to fraudulently funnel and obscure salary payments to the CEO of a non-profit fundraising effort to build a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico.

Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg Jr. said that Bannon “acted as the architect of a multi-million dollar scheme to defraud thousands of donors across the country — including hundreds of Manhattan residents.”

Bragg said that Bannon, “We Build the Wall” Chief Executive Officer Brian Kolfage and others involved in that campaign had repeatedly claimed that Kolfage would not be paid “a penny” for his work.

“But instead of pennies, [Kolfage] received more than $250,000 in a salary fund by donations,” Bragg said.

“At least $140,000 of which, we allege, was laundered by Stephen Bannon,” said Bragg, who spoke several hours after Bannon surrendered at Manhattan Criminal Court to face a grand jury indictment, which also charged WeBuildtheWall Inc.
https://www.cnbc.com/2022/09/08/trump-white-house-aide-steve-bannon-surrenders-to-face-criminal-charges.html




Holy shit! So he got paid $250K and $140K of that was laundered by Bannon and his goons? Wow, these guys really are reverse Robin Hoods! But the good news is that he’s been ordered to surrender his passports, so yeah keep him in the US! Don’t allow this criminal to flee to Mexico! And of course he’s claiming the charges are phony. Like there’s always an excuse with these clowns. No matter what kind of damage they do, they always find some way to weasel out of it. Because that’s what republicans do – they destroy something and then blame it on the other guy when that thing doesn’t work that they intentionally broke.

Former United States President Donald Trump adviser Steve Bannon has been indicted in a new criminal case in New York, and is expected to turn himself in on Thursday, The Washington Post newspaper has reported.

In a statement released to reporters late on Tuesday, Bannon pledged to fight the “phony charges” which he claimed were politically motivated.

The Washington Post, citing people familiar with the situation, reported the indictment was expected to “mirror aspects” of earlier federal charges lodged against Bannon, which alleged he had duped thousands of people into donating funds they were told would be used to build Trump’s promised wall along the border between the US and Mexico.

In his final hours in office in January 2021, Trump pardoned Bannon of the federal charges.

“They are coming after all of us, not only President Trump and myself,” Bannon said in the statement, parroting allegations that authorities have systematically gone after the former Republican president and his allies.
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/9/7/trump-ally-bannon-set-to-turn-himself-in-after-new-indictment




Yeah seriously, Steve, get the fuck out of here! This arrest wasn’t politically motivated. Shut the fuck up, you screwed up. Just admit it, and the sooner you do that the better. Seriously, this is like if the bully gets sent to the principal’s office and he alleges that you ratting him out to the principal for shoving you in that locker was politically motivated. You laugh but just watch, tomorrow Tucker and Hannity will be turning up the spin cycle to “heavy load” to sweep this shit under the rug. It’s quite the criminal racket they’re building over at the GOP, and trust us, we’ll be there to cover all of it!

Conservative political strategist and former Donald Trump campaign adviser Steve Bannon turned himself in to law enforcement on Thursday regarding his alleged role in a money laundering scheme, marking a significant break in New York State Attorney General Leticia James' inquiry into a fundraising scheme to build a wall on the southern border.

Bannon, a top figure in conservative media, was officially arraigned Thursday afternoon on a bevy of charges, including money laundering, fraud and conspiracy related to his alleged role in a scheme to raise $15 million in funds for a wall that was ultimately never built.

Hundreds of thousands of those dollars went directly into Bannon's pocket via a nonprofit organization Bannon owned, prosecutors claimed, after he initially said that he would not accept a single cent of those dollars.

While President Trump preemptively pardoned Bannon in the case shortly before exiting office in 2021, federal and state prosecutors have continued to pursue charges against him and We Build The Wall Inc., for which Bannon served as chairman of the board.
https://www.newsweek.com/steve-bannon-could-behind-bars-before-fraud-trial-begins-1741257





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[font size="8"]The White House Portrait
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You know, it’s a long standing tradition that the portrait of the previous president is unveiled in the White House when the new president takes office. Of course that tradition, like nearly all good traditions died with the most untraditional president in US history. I’m of course talking about that Former Guy, who literally ruins everything he touches. Of course Trump got elected president because of how much he hated and trolled Obama during the 8 years he was in office. So naturally when the time came to unveil the official Obama portrait in the White House, Trump gave him the ultimate “FU” he possibly could. But man the fact that it’s finally taken 5 years to formally unveil the official Obama White House portrait has really got to burn Trump and Fox News. I bet they’re just seething with rage over this. I can just picture Tucker Carlson screaming at the camera right now. What? No, we don’t need the Tucker reaction cam. Stop that! Much better. But for those of you who are wondering, this is what the Obama White House portrait entails. And it’s much different than your average White House portrait.

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama headed to the White House Wednesday for the unveiling of the couple's official portraits.

It marked the first time in 10 years that a sitting president has invited former leadership back for a revealing of the portraits — a tradition that stalled when an unveiling did not take place during the Trump years.

Tapped for the assignment of a lifetime were artists Robert McCurdy, for the president, and Sharon Sprung, for the first lady.

"These portraits have a special significance," Barack Obama said, adding that "it was important to find the right people to paint them."

Obama thanked Sprung for capturing Michelle Obama, "Her grace, her intelligence – and the fact that's she's fine," Obama said, as the former first lady rolled her eyes, later thanking him for his "spicy remarks." Obama said McCurdy captured all his flaws — his gray hair, his large ears — and quipped that he had talked him out of wearing a tan suit for the image.
https://www.npr.org/2022/09/07/1121281696/obama-portrait-white-house




All right, kids – history lesson time! Remember in the time before Trump that the president of the United States represented things like class and dignity? Well, Trump doesn’t stand for those things and he took all of that and threw it out the window! It’s truly insane how much the Christian right and Fox News lowered the bar for someone that batshit insane to take over. But we’re not going to talk about that for this segment. Let’s have some good news for a change! Don’t want you to think this show is all about negativity.

Former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama returned to the White House on Wednesday for the formal unveiling of their official White House portraits, revealing the paintings that will hang in the White House for years to come.

President Biden and first lady Jill Biden hosted the couple for what marked Michelle Obama's first visit to the White House since her husband left office in 2017. The former president visited the White House in April for a celebration of the anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act.

"Barack and Michelle, welcome home," Mr. Biden told the Obamas Wednesday. "Welcome home."

"It is great to be back," Obama said after their portraits were unveiled. "Thank you so much for your hospitality. Thanks for letting us invite a few friends to the White House. We will try not to tear up the place."
https://www.cbsnews.com/live-updates/barack-obama-michelle-obama-white-house-portraits/




Wow, even the Minions are applauding you! But really, we do occasionally like to report good news here and we also show you what class and elegance looks like. As opposed to a guy who merely thinks he embodies class and elegance. I mean come on, just look at Trump Tower in New York City or Chicago, doesn’t that just scream elegance? Actually it more screams “third world dictator” chic. But people have been giving the Obama portraits a hard time, and to those people I say with all due respect: shut the fuck up. We’ve been putting up with right wing bullshit for far too long!

Two artworks are officially joining the White House’s collection of presidential portraits: the long-awaited paintings of former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama.

You may be asking yourself: Didn’t we already see the Obama portraits? Well, yes. In 2018, two portraits—Barack Obama’s by Kehinde Wiley and Michelle Obama’s by Amy Sherald—joined the National Portrait Gallery’s collection. But former presidents and their spouses typically commission two portraits each: One is added to the gallery’s collection, and the other is kept in the White House.

Traditionally, presidents’ White House portraits are introduced in a ceremony held by their successors: Before this week, the last White House portrait ceremony that took place was in 2012, when then-President Obama unveiled the portraits of George W. Bush and Laura Bush. In a deviation from custom, former President Donald Trump held no such ceremony for the Obamas. On Wednesday, the tradition returned in a ceremony held by President Joe Biden.

The Obamas caused a stir in 2018 with the news that, for their first round of portraits, they opted for artists who intentionally break from traditional portraiture conventions. Those sensational works are currently touring museums across the country. Their selections for the White House portraits are no less groundbreaking: Barack Obama commissioned Robert McCurdy, and Michelle Obama commissioned Sharon Sprung. So, who are these artists?
https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/obama-white-house-portraits-robert-mccurdy-sharon-sprung-180980728/





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[font size="8"]Holy Shit: God’s Reward
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Gather around my fair brothers and sisters! It’s time to take a seat in the pew and pass the collection plate, for the Holy Church Of The Top 10 has convened and it’s time to remind you that the holiest among us are the most full of:



My fair congregation! Please be seated! You know it’s not all fun and games here at the Holy Church Of The Top 10. Sometimes we have to do GAWD’s dirty work. We live in an era right now where right wing Christian fundamentalists are getting increasingly hostile and more violent with their rhetoric. In fact in the last few weeks we’ve been calling out their attempts to go full nationalist led by the likes of Mike Lindell and Marjorie Greene, both servants of the unholy, ungodly Dark One! I of course speak of a man so foul, depraved and disgusting that his name dare not be spoken in my church! But last week one of my parishoners tipped me off to what’s going on in the spiritual world. It seems that ever since the disgusting and unnerving decision by the United State Supreme Court to overturn the decision known as Roe V. Wade, it seems like our brothers and sisters on the right aren’t stopping there. They plan on going full fascist totalitarian. And it’s going to get ugly. But they also have a few billionaire backers on their side who will get them there whether we want it or not.

Curt Landry is a Trump-loving right-wing pastor and purported “prophet” who regularly teaches the concept of “wealth transfer“—the theological belief that God will financially reward those who are doing his work on Earth so they will have abundant resources to fund their efforts. In a YouTube video, Landry described a recent $1.6 billion dark-money contribution to right-wing political operative Leonard Leo, who helped engineer the far-right majority on the Supreme Court, as a sign that “The great latter day wealth transfer has begun.”

The idea that God will engineer a great End Times wealth transfer to enable his followers to take dominion over nations is popular among “prophets” associated with the dominionist New Apostolic Reformation. In his 2015 book “The Great Transfer of Wealth: Financial Release for Advancing God’s Kingdom,” the late NAR leader Peter Wagner wrote, “Throughout the course of human history, three things, above all others, have caused permanent changes in society—violence, knowledge, and wealth. And the greatest of these is wealth!”

Prosperity-gospel evangelists portray wealth as a sign of God’s blessing, and use the promise of a coming wealth transfer to urge their followers to sow “seeds”—sending contributions that they promise will open the door to greater financial blessings. “Prophets” like Cindy Jacobs urge Christians to break the “spirit of poverty” and energetically pursue the accumulation of wealth. Some even saw former President Donald Trump’s 2016 election as sign that the great transfer was about to begin.

On Monday, the New York Times reported that a conservative donor had given $1.6 billion to a “new political group controlled by Leonard A. Leo, an activist who has used his connections to Republican donors and politicians to help engineer the conservative dominance of the Supreme Court and to finance battles over abortion rights, voting rules and climate change policy.”
https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/curt-landry-says-1-6-billion-donation-to-right-wing-group-is-gods-reward-for-overturning-roe-v-wade/




Sigh…….. I can’t even. The religious right’s theories get nuttier and nuttier, and the bullshit and the con artists are getting smarter with their messaging. God’s Reward is basically just the Prosperity Gospel but with smartphones and scammers. That’s not what the good LAWRD JAYSUS would want, is it? In this twisted upside down world, people who do EVIL things get rewarded and people who do good things get banished or shunned. It’s truly insane. But in case you’re wondering where the Christian right is heading, they’re not stopping at Roe V Wade, they’re bankrolling some ridiculously scary candidates. And they plan to go full fascist in 2024 should they retake power!

For years, right-wing conspiracy theorist Mike Lindell has been using his fortune to fund a wide variety of far-right efforts. In addition to spending tens of millions of dollars pushing the big lie that the 2020 election was stolen from former President Donald Trump, Lindell has long used his MyPillow company to provide financing to right-wing media outlets and activists by allowing broadcasters to receive a portion of the profits whenever their audience purchases MyPillow products using targeted coupon codes.

White nationalist Vincent James has become the latest far-right voice to benefit from Lindell’s largess, announcing during a livestream broadcast last Thursday that Lindell recently offered him just such a personalized code for his Daily Veracity website.

James currently serves as the treasurer of the white nationalist organization America First and is an unapologetic racist, antisemite, misogynist, conspiracy theorist, and fascist who declares that when Christian nationalists such as himself seize power, they intend to “dominate without mercy.”

What would a nation under the control of someone like Vincent James look like?

LGBTQ people would be thrown off of buildings and have their children kidnapped by government task forces.
https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/mike-lindell-is-bankrolling-white-nationalist-christian-fascist-vincent-james/




Hoooooooooooooooooooooooooly shit! That’s what the evil organization known as My Pillow is supporting. No wonder sane department stores dropped them! And by the way people, this is what happens when you don’t vote in elections. We get people like this. Supporters of the unholy Dark One who are threatening to take over America’s school boards and install their own fire brand of religion into America’s classrooms. That’s not God’s Reward, my fair congregation! That’s actually GAWD’s punishment, and trust me, we’ve seen where this goes in history and we do not want history repeating itself! I think even the good LAWRD JAYSUS would agree there!

Laurie Cardoza-Moore, founder of the Christian Zionist group Proclaiming Justice to the Nations, is a Trump–loving, anti–Islam, religious-right activist who has recently begun to focus her efforts on ensuring that public school textbooks eliminate what she claims is “anti-Semitic, anti-Judeo/Christian, Anti-American, pro-Islamic indoctrination of students.”

Last year, Cardoza-Moore was appointed to a seat on Tennessee’s State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission, but it seems that she has been expanding her efforts beyond her home state.

Speaking at the Nashville Women’s Conference last week, Cardoza-Moore bragged about her ties to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, saying that because of her efforts, public school students in the state are now being taught that this nation “was founded on the Torah.”

Cardoza-Moore reported that she met with DeSantis when he was running for governor in 2018 and that he promised her that he’d get rid of the textbooks she opposed. After he was elected, Cardoza-Moore claims that she was invited to help review the civics standard for Florida public schools.
https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/our-nation-was-founded-on-the-torah-christian-zionist-laurie-cardoza-moore-brags-about-shaping-floridas-public-school-curriculum/




This is really a dark time for our nation, folks. The Christian right is totally off their rocker and out of control. But between God’s Reward and the rise of Christian fascism and the remaking of America’s schools toward the Christian right, it’s getting scary out there. And it’s being laid out what the Christian right really wants to do for this country. The fact that we have these billionaire scumbags out there rewarding churches for doing the wrong thing is only making it worse. But at least they’re spelling out their real intentions, like what this douche is doing.

Earlier this year, far-right conspiracy theorist Stew Peters gave white nationalist, Christian fascist Dalton Clodfelter a nightly program on his Stew Peters Network called “The Right Dissident.”

Peters is a white nationalist-promoting broadcaster who, despite using his nightly program to spread wild conspiracy theories and calls for violence, has managed to build close ties to various far-right political candidates and to interview several elected officials, GOP candidates, and former members of the Trump administration. Peters clearly saw something he liked in Clodfelter’s brand of radical right-wing bigotry, Christian nationalism, and antisemitic fascism, all of which Clodfelter has openly promoted five nights a week on Peters’ platform.

Last Thursday, Clodfelter used his show to call for the establishment of a “far-right authoritarian government” in this nation that will imprison its political enemies, establish Christianity as the national religion, and outlaw all secular education.

“Once we take our country back, we will have federal agents kicking down the doors of every treasonous Democrat, every treasonous globalist, every homosexual couple that has molested a child, and they will be arrested, and they will be sentenced to prison,” Clodfelter declared. “I believe in a far right-authoritarian government. No, I am not a fascist. No, I am not a white supremacist. No, I am not a Nazi. But I do believe that hierarchy, structure, and authority are very important. I do believe that our society needs these things in order to progress and maintain its cultural framework.”
https://www.rightwingwatch.org/post/once-we-take-control-dalton-clodfelter-lays-out-his-christian-fascist-agenda/




Holy shit. I bet that guy is fun at parties. And yes, dude, you are a fucking Nazi and a fascist and a white supremacist, get over yourself, asshole. How much does a plane ticket to New Zealand cost? I do not want to live in the Christian right’s vision for America. Mass has ended, may you go in peace! That’s it this week for:




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[font size="8"]Beating A Dead Horse: Toxic Fandom
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You know since the very beginning of this segment, we’ve stressed time and time again how toxic fandoms can be. The thing is living in the social media age, it’s a great time to be a fan of whatever your favorite franchise is. And right now, it’s also the worst time to be a fan of whatever your favorite franchise is. Doesn’t matter if it’s the Avengers, or Star Wars, or Lord Of The Rings, or Game Of Thrones, or the Walking Dead, or the Simpsons, or hell, whatever your favorite band or TV show is. The problem is that social media has given lunatics a megaphone. And you know when you give a lunatic a megaphone, that nothing good comes from it. Remember when we used to watch movies and shows, or listen to music or read books, and I don’t know, enjoy them? Well, that’s getting increasingly harder to do in the age of extreme fandom. The problem is today’s toxic political climate is trickling down to your favorite programs, movies, music, books, and so on and so forth. Take for instance Lord Of The Rings, legendary franchise and it is attracting some of the worst fans imaginable.

Elijah Wood, Sean Astin and the core cast of Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” film trilogy are understandably protective of the beloved fantasy property. But they won’t tolerate racism or hatred toward the new generation of Tolkien actors.

Several performers in Amazon’s new series “Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” have been besieged by hateful comments from viewers who have criticized casting people of color as Elves, Dwarves and Harfoots, among other fictional races. (Most of the roles were created for the show, including the Silvan elf Arondir, played by Ismael Cruz Córdova, and Princess Disa the dwarf, portrayed by Sophia Nomvete, two actors who have been the targets of hateful messaging.)

Cast members have spoken out about the racist comments they’ve received, and now, they have the support of original hobbits Wood, Astin, Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd, who played Frodo, Samwise, Merry and Pippin, respectively. All four actors appeared wearing gear that reads, in Elvish, “You all are welcome here,” along with several ears of different characters in a spectrum of skin tones. (Tolkien created various dialects of Elvish for his works.)

The shirts and hats were made by Don Marshall, a TikTok user with more than 590,000 followers who shares “obscure ‘LOTR’ facts.” Earlier this month Marshall, who expressed enthusiasm about the new series and its new characters, asked his fans to help him identify users who left racist comments on his videos, saying he’d blocked around 100 of them already.
https://www.cnn.com/2022/09/07/entertainment/lord-of-the-rings-stars-criticize-racism-cec/index.html




Sigh… seriously next right winger who uses words like “woke” and “identity politics” is getting slapped upside their heads Three Stooges style. Like seriously those phrases have been beaten into the ground so many times that they’ve lost all meaning. Fuck off with that shit, OK? Franchises evolve with the times and you need to get used to that. Instead of embracing diversity, white wingers attack the person and the idea. Lord Of The Rings wasn’t the only franchise that got the latest round of shit from toxic internet fandom. There’s also the Amazon series The Boys.

Erin Moriarty is calling out the “misogynistic trolling” she has experienced by some fans who watch Amazon’s The Boys. The actor portrays the character of Annie January, Starlight, who has been heavily criticized.

Moriarty took to Instagram where she shared an article titled “#IStandWithStarlight?: The betrayal of Erin Moriarty by The Boys ‘fans’.” The article points out the hate that the character of Starlight receives on social media, which transcends to hurtful comments to Moriarty.

“I do feel silenced. I do feel dehumanized. I do feel paralyzed. I’ve put blood, sweat, and tears into this role (over & over & over again). I’ve grown UP in this character’s shoes (*emphasis on grown up – we change & evolve mentally AND physically),” Moriarty posted on Instagram.

Moriarty thanks @butcherscanary, who wrote the article and added, “this does break my heart – I’ve opened up a vein for this role and the misogynistic trolling is exactly what this role (Annie) would speak out against.”
https://deadline.com/2022/09/the-boys-erin-moriarty-calls-out-misogynistic-trolling-by-fans-1235109753/




OK look, here’s the thing – you can like something, guys! And it must suck to be a beautiful star like Erin Moriarty and have to deal with these sexless losers. That’s why I said earlier that right now it’s the absolute worst time to be a fan of whatever your favorite franchise is. Because the vicious trolls are only getting that much worse. Like it’s OK to not like something. It’s another thing entirely to hate something to the point of wanting to murder the entire cast and crew that made it. Just ask Kellie Marie Tran about that one (see: Top 10 #5-1. Just stop it already!

Whoopi Goldberg is slamming trolls criticizing The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power and House of the Dragon over their casting choices. Some fans on social media have called out the series on Prime Video and HBO for becoming “woke” and showing people of color in the fantasy worlds originally created by J. R. R. Tolkien and George R. R. Martin.

On the premiere episode of The View Season 26, Goldberg put the racist trolls on blast at the “Hot Topics” table.

“I want to start by saying these are not real. OK?” Goldberg started. “The new Lord of the Rings series, The Rings of Power and Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon are both massive hits, but they don’t exist in the real world. OK? There are no dragons, there are no hobbits you know, you know that.”

Goldberg added, “Are you telling me Black people can’t be fake people too? I don’t know if there’s a hobbit club, I don’t know if they’re going to protest. But people, what is wrong with y’all?”
https://deadline.com/2022/09/the-view-whoopi-goldberg-blasts-the-rings-of-power-house-of-the-dragon-trolls-racist-backlash-1235109652/




Oh come on, Whoopi! You don’t think the trolls know that already? This is 2022, racist trolling has been a thing for 10 years now. And it’s absolutely 100% a white supremacist movement. But really most internet white wingers like Ben Shapiro think of diversity like an old, old wooden ship from the Civil War era, like Ron Burgundy does. But the good news is that the cast of the new Lord Of The Rings series has united against the vicious white wing trolls that seem to dominate internet discussion these days.

If you've been following our coverage of Neil Gaiman (The Sandman) pushing back on toxic trolls who've been attacking J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay's The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power because of its diverse casting, claiming without a clue that it goes against J.R.R. Tolkien's wishes. Well, that's just a small part of a bigger problem that the trolls have been unleashing upon the series, with cast members going public with their experiences of being abused online by supposed "fans" who apparently can accept anything and everything that goes on in a fantasy series except the idea of a woman or an actor of color actually starring in one. Now, the cast of the streaming series is letting everyone know that they're done putting up with it, they won't stand for it, and that they are in "absolute solidarity" when it comes to pushing back on racist, narrow-minded trolling wherever it rears its ugly head. Following that, the statement set the record straight when it comes to the world Tolkien created and how it was intended to reflect the world around us. And then it wraps with a pledge of love and support to the fans, who've made the series successful, despite the abuse they've also had to endure on social media simply for appreciating being represented. Here's a look at the full statement:

Heading into the Prime Video series' two-episode debut, the streaming series was riding an impressive 83% "Fresh" average score on Rotten Tomatoes (RT) with critics. But over on RT, there was a shocking contrast when it came to the audience review, hovering around an average 37% "Rotten" score, resulting in many viewing it as another example of "review bombing." And over on the streamer, Amazon suspended its ratings system for the show, with a source telling The Hollywood Reporter that "reviews are being held 72 hours to help weed out trolls and to ensure each review is legitimate," a policy reportedly instituted earlier this summer for all of Prime Video's shows.
https://bleedingcool.com/tv/lord-of-the-rings-cast-in-absolute-solidarity-against-racist-trolls/





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[font size="8"]Conspiracy Corner
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Welcome back to our segment where we explain the unexplainable – Conspiracy Corner! When there’s a lot of particularly dark shit in the news, people don’t exactly want to read beyond the headlines because it gets that much worse. So naturally they turn to conspiracy theories to explain what they can’t. We are of course coming to you live from our underground doomsday shelter in the New Mexico badlands. Let me just adjust my tin foil hat for maximum government interference… they are trying to read both yours and my thoughts, after all! Ah, there we go! This week in order to stir up the crazies and potentially incite violence, Fox News is going all in on a “border crisis”. You may have heard your Fox loving friends and neighbors drone on and on about a “border crisis”. But what is it? Do they even know why they’re mad at Biden about the border or are they just going on about what Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson tell them every night? If I were a betting man, I’d say they have absolutely no clue what they are talking about and only want an excuse to use their precious guns.

Republican leaders are increasingly framing the situation as an "invasion." Immigrant advocates say the word has a long history in white nationalist circles, and warn that such extreme rhetoric could provoke more violence against immigrants.

Still, the polling shows that the word "invasion" has been embraced by a wide range of Americans to describe what's happening at the border.

"We are not actually screening enough people to make it safe for the rest of the country," said poll respondent Michael Cisternino, a Republican from Nevada, in a follow-up interview.

"We, the people of the United States, really don't have control over who's coming in, and where they're going or what they're going to do when they get there — if they're criminals, if they're not criminals," Cisternino said.

Studies have consistently shown that immigrants are less likely to commit crimes or be incarcerated than native-born Americans. In the NPR/Ipsos poll, a plurality of Republicans answered incorrectly that immigrants are more likely to commit crimes.
https://www.npr.org/2022/08/18/1117953720/a-majority-of-americans-see-an-invasion-at-the-southern-border-npr-poll-finds




Yes, the GOP leaders (read: talk show hosts) are attempting to define what’s going at the border as an “invasion”. So how exactly do they define what an “invasion” is? Do they even know themselves? Well they probably do, but you won’t hear an exact definition on Fox News. But while the border spans California – Arizona – New Mexico – Texas, ever notice how it’s only the Texas border that gets the most press coverage among the right wing? Well, there might be a reason for that. And the blame does not lie where you think it might.

When he appeared on Fox News’ “Hannity” last week, Gov. Greg Abbott kept smiling.

Four months prior, he had announced that the state of Texas was planning to bus migrants from near the Texas-Mexico border to Washington, D.C., a move that drew mixed reviews — even among conservatives — and soon fell off the political radar. But then New York City Mayor Eric Adams began raising alarms about the impact on his city.

“This just shows the hypocrisy of these liberal leaders up in the northeast who think, ‘That border crisis created by Joe Biden, that’s fine as long as Texas has to deal with it,’” Abbott told the host, Sean Hannity. “But as soon as they have to deal with the real consequences of Biden’s border-caused crisis, they are up in arms.”

For days, Abbott had denied Adams’ claims that Texas was even sending migrants to New York. But that Wednesday night, he told Hannity that he was looking at “new cities to send them to.”

“Well, New York sounds like a good one,” Hannity said. Then one of the highest-rated hosts in cable news reminded his viewers the importance of reelecting Abbott this fall.
https://www.texastribune.org/2022/08/12/greg-abbott-eric-adams-migrants-bus/




Yeah BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Yeah so it’s all Greg Abbott’s fault! He’s not actually rounding up immigrants at the border. He’s just putting them on a bus and shipping them to blue states and letting them deal with it. So yeah, fuck that guy. And fuck Hannity too. He’s just doing this because it makes him look good on paper. You know, like when the Los Angeles Angels spend $300 million on Albert Pujols and then don’t make the playoffs for 10 years. Thanks, Arte! But nonsense aside, you can’t just attack what this douchebag is doing because otherwise, you attack the very things Texas stands for!

Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott has fired back at Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot after she called his actions regarding the busing of migrants to the Midwestern city "racist" last week.

Lightfoot made the comments during a Thursday news conference in reaction to Texas sending two buses with approximately 95 migrants who arrived in Chicago on Wednesday. Abbott's office said the decision was made in response to President Joe Biden "putting the lives of Texans—and Americans—at risk" and "overwhelming our communities."

Southern border crossings are exponentially higher now, compared with the past few years, according to statistics from U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Border crossings in every month so far of the 2022 fiscal year besides July have exceeded the corresponding month's total in 2021.

"Mayor Lightfoot is attacking Texas instead of addressing the real cause of the border crisis: Joe Biden," Abbott tweeted on Monday. "His inaction at our border is putting the lives of Texans at risk & is overwhelming our communities. Texas is doing Biden's job to secure the border."
https://www.newsweek.com/texas-governor-greg-abbott-chicago-mayor-lori-lightfoot-migrant-busing-comments-1740016




Holy shit, hyperbole much, Greg? Seriously you’re an evil fucking coot and so is your buddy Ken Paxton, Texas deserves so much better than these ghouls. This is really just a political hit job and that’s about it, and it’s only to score points with Fox News viewers. Really the more you dig into this disgusting stunt, the worse it gets. Like a Snickers bar that’s been sitting out in 110 degree weather for 5 minutes. You’re welcome for that image by the way! But it is poop. And Greg Abbott is a colossal shit head for prolonging this crisis and making it worse..
Philip Bump, a national correspondent for the Washington Post, questions whether the border crossings can be considered an invasion. The migrants are stopped when they try to enter the United States, and the ones who are released are released on parole or alternatives to detention to wait for a hearing. Moreover, most of the migrants who are released show up for a hearing before an immigration judge.

He would have a good point if DHS maintained control over the released migrants, but that’s not the case.

Even if Bump is right that most of them appear for their hearings, “most” is not good enough when more than a million are released into the country: At past rates, more than 400,000 of them won’t appear at their hearings.

And what difference does it make that many of them appear at their hearings if some of the ones who receive a deportation order abscond after their hearings.
https://thehill.com/opinion/immigration/3615258-is-the-border-crisis-an-invasion/





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[font size="8"]People Are Dumb
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Hit it!



Of course you know by now that people are people, and people are dumb! So before I begin, I always want to preface what makes a People Are Dumb story. Like for instance a person robbing a McDonalds is not really a People Are Dumb story. But a person who sends a live chicken through a Wal-Mart to distract security guards while they attempt to rob a place? Now that’s a People Are Dumb story! And look I know we pick on Florida a lot on this program. But Florida, really guys, you bring it on yourselves with all the crazy people who live in this state. First I want to start with this story out of Alaska. Or as it’s basically known, Florida with snow. Oh I kid, we love Alaska here. Anyway this is one instance where maybe you don’t want to play the race card. And let’s face it, playing the race card is dumb no matter what the situation is, but this is pretty much unparalleled levels of stupid!

A woman flashed a 'white privilege' card after being pulled over. Now, officers are in trouble for letting her go.

Two Anchorage police officers violated department policy during a traffic stop last month when a woman in town for a rally by former President Donald Trump showed them a “white privilege card” instead of a driver’s license and was not ticketed, the Anchorage Daily News reported.

However, it’s not clear what policy was violated or what, if any, disciplinary actions the officers faced, because the department is treating it as a confidential personnel matter, according to Anchorage Police Department Director of Community Relations Sunny Guerin.

Officers Nicholas Bowe and Charles Worland with the Impaired Driving Enforcement Unit conducted a traffic stop on July 7 “for a car weaving in the lane,” Guerin said. She didn’t identify the driver, who she said showed a "white privilege" card during the stop.

Bowe and Worland did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment Friday.
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/amp/rcna41700


Next up – Italy! Yes, they are the subject of our World Tour this week! But even Italy isn’t immune from stupid people – in fact, nobody is! So here’s the thing – if you are going to tunnel your way into a bank, don’t you think that you should maybe, I don’t know – learn how to dig a tunnel first? Because if you don’t dig a tunnel properly, it could do that thing that tunnels are known to do and collapse on you, and that’s something that you don’t want. Particularly if you’re trying to rob a bank. And I honestly don’t know why the location of being in proximity to the Vatican was relevant, but whatever, you do you.

An Italian man has been rescued from a collapsed tunnel near the Vatican - and police suspect he could have been burrowing his way into a bank.

He is now recovering in hospital after firefighters spent eight hours digging him out from under a road.
...
Two other men were arrested for "resisting a public official" after trying to escape from the site, Rai News reports.

Three of the four men managed to escape before the tunnel collapsed, leaving the final man trapped six metres below.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-62517372




There really is a Simpsons GIF for everything! Next up – while we’re still in Europe, we go to the tiny Bavarian province of Liechtenstein. Sigh… here’s the thing. I live in California. We know a thing or two about earthquakes here. That’s because we live on a giant fault line that runs up and down the entire state called San Andreas. But if earthquakes are such a problem that you have to debate the pros and cons of earthquake insurance, there’s an easy answer to that – well fucking duh of course you need this type of insurance! And this only proves the point of the pro side.

Two earthquakes hit Liechtenstein just as lawmakers in the tiny Alpine principality were debating the pros and cons of quake insurance.

Lawmaker Bettina Petzold-Maehr had just warned that the chances of all Liechtenstein citizens being affected by an earthquake striking the country were high when the first small temblor hit shortly before 2 p.m. (6 a.m. Eastern) Thursday.

Petzold-Maehr laughed and continued until the second quake struck, visibly shaking the room. At that point she stopped speaking to look around the chamber.

That's when the parliament's speaker Albert Frick interrupted: "This is getting a bit much, you never know if there'll be aftershocks," he said, announcing a 15-minute recess.
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/liechtenstein-earthquake-as-lawmakers-debate-quake-insurance/




Now it’s time for our old buddy Florida Man. Florida – as some of you may know it, America’s Wang, or as Tracy Jordan referred to it, the Penis Of America. Florida, what are you doing? You need to take a step back and reevaluate your life. But this is the perfect Florida Man story and it’s also the perfect People Are Dumb story. Here’s my whole thing – if you’re already committing felony drug possession, maybe don’t hide your stash underneath a cop car. Just saying.

Deputies in Volusia County made a caught-on-camera drug arrest after a traffic stop in DeLand.

John Schneider, 49, was charged with trafficking in methamphetamine, tampering with evidence and resisting without violence. His girlfriend, Lee Sanberg, was charged with conspiracy to traffic in methamphetamine.

In the video above, a deputy notices Schneider drop something while he is being patted down.

“He just dropped a bag that looked like dope,” one of the deputies said.

“Aww man,” Sanberg is heard saying. ..............(more)

https://www.wesh.com/article/volusia-county-meth-arrest-traffic-stop/40956233#




Next up – Naked Florida Man! Yes, we get a lot of these stories, and apparently both Florida Man and Florida Woman… like being naked. Shocker, I know! But as Jerry Seinfeld once famously said – there’s good naked and there’s bad naked. Bad naked is pretty much anything involving a knife. And you don’t want to have a knife come anywhere near that area if you don’t have any clothes on. But in terms of what this guy with a knife tried to do, it ended about as well as 4th of JaLuau did.

A naked Florida man who was armed with a machete when he allegedly tried to steal another man's clothes was arrested Monday morning at a DeLand gas station, according to the Volusia Sheriff's Office.

Shortly before 10 a.m., deputies arrived to an area near the Volusia County Fairgrounds after a surveyor working in the area said the suspect – later identified as 34-year-old Brandon Wright – was picking palmetto berries in the woods, and suddenly approached him with a large machete-style knife and demanded his clothes, wallet and phone.

When the surveyor began to comply with Wright's demands, Wright reportedly threw the machete at him, along with a handful of palmetto berries, before taking off into the brush and then into a white Dodge Challenger. Deputies said the handle of the machete bounced off the surveyor's chest, leaving him uninjured.

When the surveyor began to comply with Wright's demands, Wright reportedly threw the machete at him, along with a handful of palmetto berries, before taking off into the brush and then into a white Dodge Challenger. Deputies said the handle of the machete bounced off the surveyor's chest, leaving him uninjured. ..............(more)

https://www.fox35orlando.com/news/naked-florida-man-tries-to-rob-surveyor-of-his-clothes-at-deland-gas-station-deputies




Finally this week – this might be one of the best Florida Man stories I’ve heard in a very long time. I mean it has everything! It has clothing theft, it has a Bible being hurled at someone, it has poop… yes, there’s poop involved. But nevertheless, you can always count on Florida Man to bring the crazy whenever possible. But this is one of those stories where the more that you get into it. And yes, the more you dig into it – the more the cliches you hear are true – meth is one hell of a drug!

Robert Otis Hoskins, 39, of Ocala, Florida, was arrested last week after police were called to his home following reports Hoskins had broken into his neighbor's home to steal clothes.

Marion County Sheriff's deputies found the half-naked suspected burglar outside his home last week.

When confronted, Hoskins allegedly screamed "I condemn you" at a sheriff's deputy and threw a Bible at him.

The Bible landed squarely in the deputy's face and jaw, the arrest affidavit reads.

Another responding deputy was able to capture the scene unfold through bodycam footage.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/1548815/florida-suspect-in-underwear-throws-bible-at-sheriff/




That’s it this week for:




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[font size="8"]World Tour 2022 Destination #6: Italy
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Part of our mission statement here at the Top 10 Conservative Idiots is that we view conservative idiocy not just as a uniquely American problem. No, it’s a global problem and conservatives are ruining everything they touch all around the world. Which is why we present to you:



Welcome back to our World Tour 2022 everybody! In the last few weeks we’ve toured two very different sides of the USA, seen the Great White North in Canada, went to England and then took the train down to France. Now we’re in Italy! Italy is the home of ancient and current Rome. It’s the home of fast cars from manufacturers like Alfa Romeo, Lamborghini, Maserati, and the classic Ferarri! Though actual Italian cars are more like whatever the hell this thing is. It’s also the home to the Serie A league if you follow European football and teams like Juventus and AC Milan. It is also the home of Vatican City – the Capitol City of the Catholic empire. Italy is also the home to such landmarks as the Roman Coliiseum and the Pantheon. What else is Italy the home of? Well, wait until you meet their potential new leader – Georgia Meloni. She might be the next new leader of Italy, but she’s also a member of Italy’s extreme far right party, which is really no different from the MAGAs here.

Almost exactly 100 years after Benito Mussolini staged his “March on Rome” mass demonstration, during which his National Fascist Party seized power, Italy appears likely to hand control of its government to Giorgia Meloni, another leader of the nationalist right.

Charismatic and driven, the 45-year-old Meloni, a parliamentarian, doesn’t hold a university degree, but as head of Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy), a far-right-wing party she formed a decade ago, the single mother has campaigned on a platform based on her belief in the virtues of God, motherhood and patriotism, while decrying immigration and LGBTQ rights. Polls show her and Brothers of Italy poised for victory in a Sept. 25 parliamentary election that will determine Italy’s next prime minister.

While many conservatives cheer her ascent — and the idea of the first woman to rule Italy — her candidacy has simultaneously raised concerns among Italians about racism and the future of abortion in the country as well as Italy’s role in the European Union.

Although she rejects being labeled “far-right” and “neo-fascist” by opponents and has toned down her attacks on the European Union, Meloni appeared at a June rally in support of Spain’s far-right Vox party and delivered remarks that renewed that criticism.
https://news.yahoo.com/a-century-after-mussolini-seized-power-giorgia-meloni-looks-to-steer-italy-back-toward-nationalism-183116834.html




Oh come on, Italy! Don’t you know that these types of movements never end well? And they’re about as shady as that scam call you get telling you that your car’s warranty is about to expire. When it’s two years old and still under manufacturer warranty. But really this is exactly like our situation with the MAGAs here. Far right movements never end well no matter what the situation is. But nevertheless, we will be covering the outcome of the election for Italy’s next top prime minister. And right now it’s not looking too great.

At a rally in L’Aquila, a medieval university city surrounded by mountain peaks, Giorgia Meloni bellowed with fervor. “On September 25, it will be you who decides if this country is ready to be free.”

The crowd cheered in response and waved tricolor flags as Meloni — flanked by local mayors — sang the national anthem from which her far-right party, Brothers of Italy, takes its name.

Polls suggest the Brothers will win the backing of one in four Italian voters in the election on September 25, putting Meloni on course to lead a right-wing coalition as Italy’s next prime minister.

After the resignation of Mario Draghi in July, a Meloni victory would mark a sharp change of direction for Italy at a critical time for the country’s economy, as Europe grapples with the twin threats of war on its doorstep and rocketing inflation.
https://www.politico.eu/article/giorgia-meloni-brothers-of-italy-abruzzo-mario-draghi-election-rome-berlusconi-salvini-far-right-aquila/




Oh come on, we kid! We kid! We love Italy here. What we don’t love is white nationalism and religious totalitarianism. Those are values we don’t share. And trust me when we say that this could get really ugly really quickly. And wait until you find out what their neighbors Greece are up to when we hit there in a couple of weeks. But this is exactly what the World Tour was made for – finding out stuff like this, because World War II didn’t just happen overnight. It was a long slow boil and the powder keg finally exploded when Hitler took over Poland. Well with leaders like Meloni at the helm, things could escalate very fast!

Current polls give high probability that a right-wing coalition will win Italy’s next elections on September 25. Giorgia Meloni, leader of Brothers of Italy (Fratelli d’Italia, or FdI), the right-wing party that is heading the polls, could become Italy’s first female prime minister — but if she wins, she will also be its first head of government whose political party has never fully renounced its fascist background.

During her campaign, Meloni alternated betweenreassuring and extremely controversial statements about her political agenda. She also ambiguously defined former Italian Prime Minister Benito Mussolini is a personality who needs to be framed in a specific historical context. The election comes almost exactly 100 years after Mussolini’s march on Rome that opened the way to his dictatorship.

From a statistical perspective, however, Brothers of Italy’s rise is no different from that of all other Italian anti-system parties from the 1990s onwards. The current developments — though traumatic for Italy’s political culture — appear to be a new round of the same phenomenon, with single parties suddenly rising and surfing the waves, one after the other, of endlessly protesting Italians. Those waves have not stopped rolling since the resurgence of anti-political sentiment in the early 1990s.

In the 2008 and 2013 elections, Brothers of Italy won less than 2% of the vote and in 2018 it got around 4%. Currently, four weeks ahead of the elections, polls ascribe around 24% to Meloni’s party. The same pattern has been methodically replicated over the last three decades. In 1994, Berlusconi’s Forza Italia, founded only five months earlier, became the first party with 21% of the vote. The Lega political party obtained only about 4% of votes between 2001 and 2006, but rose above 37% in 2019, shortly after the latest European elections. The Five Star Movement, founded in 2009, got 25% only four years later, and 32% in the 2018 elections.
https://www.brookings.edu/blog/order-from-chaos/2022/08/26/what-happens-if-right-wing-giorgia-meloni-wins-italys-elections/




No, Italy doesn’t use a king! Though that probably might be slightly better than a tip toward white nationalism and fascism, and a leader and political party that sound just like Trump and the MAGAs do here. See, kids? This shit is not a uniquely American problem! It’s happening all over the damn world and there’s one country that is to blame for it. And let’s see if you can guess who it is! If you said Mother Russia… you are 100% correct! That’s right, Pooty has his dirty fingers in governments and elections all over the world and is flipping governments left and right. It’s now time to start calling out the source!

In 2018, then-U.S. President Donald Trump authorized a retaliatory cyberattack on Russian government-backed trolls and hackers who were aiming to interfere in the U.S. midterm election. In 2020, the Biden administration sanctioned Russian entities and individuals for similar efforts.

In each instance, the Russians were capitalizing on divisions in American society, seeking to amplify a growing partisan gulf and erode faith in the democratic process via trolls, fake websites, and internet-based fronts.

But what if, horror-movie style, the enemy was already in the house—if the U.S. news media itself was a shill for Russian propaganda? That is the case in parts of Europe—most visibly in Italy, which has become a haven for Russian disinformation and propaganda since the invasion of Ukraine.

Those who follow the Russian war in Ukraine were particularly astonished when Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, generally viewed in Western capitals as a smooth operator lacking some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s cruder tics, announced that it was totally consistent for the Jewish president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, to be running a neo-Nazi junta because, Lavrov explained, former Nazi leader Adolf Hitler had “Jewish blood” and some of the “most ardent antisemites are usually Jews.”
https://foreignpolicy.com/2022/09/13/russian-propaganda-italy-media-disinformation-ukraine-war/




[font size="4"]Scorecard: [/font]

Tourism: A
Culture: A+
Political Spectrum: D-
Liberal Appeal: C-

Overall: C

Change from 2017: Italy’s march towards a new era of fascism and white nationalism should have the entire world on notice. If you do plan to visit, you should be aware of where you are going and who you’re patronizing.

[font size="4"]Next Week: [/font]

Next week, we’re heading to the land of the Danube River, Ghoulash and what the GOP thinks is a role model for a far right nationalist country – Hungary!



[font size="4"]And Now This: [/font]
[font size="4"]Goose[/font]

Folks my next guest is an awesome jam band from Connecticut, their latest album is called Dripfield and you can see them on tour through December 12th. Playing their song “The Whales”, give it up for Goose!



Thank you Vegas! We’ll be back again soon! We’re off to Salt Lake City next! See you next week!

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Top 10 Conservative Idiots Recorded In Front Of A Live Audience At: Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club At The MGM Grand, Las Vegas, NV
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