It’s Thursday Threatcon, your intelligence briefing on right wing activity. Below are the best reports, investigations, exposées, and debunkery of the wingnutosphere this week. Due to next week’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, our Threatcon Color Code is RED STATE

  • After many delays, the RNC speaker lineup is finally available. Your key takeaway is that Clinton-connected conspiracy theories will dominate the stage, with Benghazi and anti-immigration propaganda and sexual rumors about Bill Clinton taking precedence over economic issues or anything else with genuine impact on the real lives of Americans. Fittingly, failed NFL quarterback Tim Tebow will open festivities on the final evening, followed immediately by the crazed Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and later by tech billionaire Peter Thiel, whose efforts to bankrupt the news sites that offend him are a perfect argument for confiscatory taxation of super-high incomes
  • Pursuant to the previous point: Thiel is also gay, but his wealth insulates him from the consequences of engagement with a political party that has just instituted the most virulently anti-LGBT platform in their history. Hate group leader Tony Perkins has inserted a plank defending so-called ‘conversion therapy;’ the platform committee has added language endorsing “traditional” marriage and a claim that children raised by straight couples are emotionally better-off
  • By criticizing Obama’s efforts to combat campus rape, Republicans have reinforced their image as rape apologists. By demanding that the bible be taught as a “historical document” in American public schools, the GOP once again offers a glimpse of their intended Gilead. By adding language that calls pornography a “public health crisis” to their platform, Republicans have done exactly nothing to alter the perception that they’re sex-obsessed control freaks. (Special shout-out here to mendacious libertarian hack Conor Friedersdorf, who blithely predicted four years ago that the GOP would give up its anti-porn crusade this time around.) This puts an end to all that loose talk about Donald Trump being a liberalizing influence on the Republican Party RE: social issues. If anything, the GOP is becoming even more goofy, fringe, and fanatical with Trump as their nominee
  • Underlining the previous paragraph: the GOP platform committee has also incorporated the Cliven Bundy agenda of privatizing federal lands, a policy position that is not popular at all out west, even among conservatives
  • Lots of Republican officeholders are making every excuse not to meet Trump or attend the RNC. Wall Street, which considers Trump a terrible credit risk and any association with him a PR nightmare, will be notably absent from the festivities in Cleveland
  • ‘Alt-right’ website Eternal Sentry will not be holding a “unity rally” with Trump ally Roger stone at the RNC, after all, but professional nutjob Alex Jones will still be there with bells on
  • Thanks to GOP-passed gun laws, a full panoply of extremist groups promises to show up in Cleveland bearing arms. (Protesters will be forbidden to carry water guns or tennis balls, however, because we would rather surrender every other freedom we have before we give up our assault rifles.) Thousands of extra police will flood the streets, judges are on standby, and temporary jail space has been prepared to handle the overflow of mass arrests while Trump’s violent fans mix it up with this crowd. What could possibly go wrong?
  • New rule: mainstream media must transcribe Trump’s actual extemporaneous remarks instead of just posting advance copies of his prepared text. After he has made so many teleprompter jokes about other candidates, Americans deserve every chance to judge Trump’s coherence level when using one himself
  • Pat Buchanan, whose dire intonations of a “religious” and “cultural war” underway in America made the 1992 RNC a pivotal moment in Bill Clinton’s defeat of George H. W. Bush, now warns that “white America has begun to die” — by which he means that white demographic supremacy is fading. In Buchanan’s eyes, ‘President Trump’ is the last, best hope to shut off the flow of nonwhite people into the United States — and he speaks for a lot of Trump’s voters
  • Since Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is the heavy favorite to be Donald Trump’s VP choice, we should all keep in mind that as a Congressman, Pence launched the right wing war on Planned Parenthood; that as governor, he created a local HIV infection crisis by shutting down PP clinics; that he tried to mandate funerals for aborted fetuses; and that his ‘religious freedom‘ bill was a compete and utter public relations disaster that saw him choke under a national spotlight. If Trump does choose Pence, it really speaks to his in-person style of vetting:

  • Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard was sentenced to four years in prison for his conviction on corruption charges
  • Minutemen ‘border patrol’ co-founder Chris Simcox was sentenced to nearly 20 years in prison for raping a five year-old girl. His co-founder Shawna Forde is on death row for the murder of a man and his 9 year-old daughter in a botched drug robbery
  • Angry that social media companies sometimes delete her hate-filled screeds to comply with ‘community standards,’ arch Islamophobe Pamela Geller is suing Attorney General Loretta Lynch over Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act because she has no clue how the First Amendment actually works
  • Larry Klayman, an original Clinton-obsessive whose own Judicial Watch organization eventually found him too insane for polite company, is suing President Obama, Louis Farrakhan, Al Sharpton, and Black Lives Matter for ‘putting his life in danger
  • The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the conviction of 71 year-old ‘sovereign citizen’ William Peter Witwicki for filing fraudulent liens
  • In Georgia, the ‘Clayton County Citizen’s Oversight Committee’ tried and failed to “arrest” commissioners for their “un-American” activities
  • Trenton, New Jersey ‘sovereign’ Don Finney was sentenced to 33 years in prison for assaulting and strangling his estranged wife in front of their children. He had previously been acquitted of raping her in the course of his crimes
  • 24 year-old ‘sovereign’ Brandon Jesse Lara was arrested before he could disrupt a Black Lives Matter event in Oklahoma City with smoke bombs
  • Those polls that show a tight race between Trump and Clinton this week? Historian Bruce Bartlett says you should take them with plenty of salt:

  • Congressional Republicans want to defund contraception to help the Zika virus spread as far as possible so more American women can have the joy of babies born with microcephaly
  • Islamophobia may be tapped out as a political strategy
  • All those new border fences in Europe are an ecological disaster in progress
  • One possible explanation for the rise of extremism in the 21st Century: boredom
  • Another explanation: seven out of ten households in the world’s most advanced economies have seen falling incomes during the last decade even as corporate profits have gained new heights, a plain violation of the social contract that created the middle class in the first place
  • Former KKK leader David Duke, who has endorsed Trump, now wants to run for Congress
  • Anti-LGBT liar and Catholic priest Donald Paul Sullins has vomited forth another fraudulent ‘study’ that purportedly proves ‘straight’ couples are better for children. Tellingly, it’s not published in a peer-reviewed journal
  • Why is there never any collective blame involved in Fox News coverage of white people who kill cops?
  • Remember Rachel Maddow’s hypothesis that House Speaker John Boehner was bad at his job? I am increasingly convinced that Paul Ryan is not really any better at it:

https://youtu.be/PmdRK3E8X9c

  • muselet

    • Tim Tebow has said he won’t in fact speak at the Republican convention. Give them some time and even Donald Trump’s family members will find reasons to bail on him.

    • Ah, the culture wars. Where would the GOP be without them?

    • “Many People did not care for Pat Buchanan’s speech; it probably sounded better in the original German.” – Molly Ivins, 1992 (Damn, I miss Molly Ivins.)

    • Pamela Geller must have been feeling ignored and, like a toddler, threw a gargantuan tantrum. Her lawyers should face sanctions for participating in such a clear waste of the courts’ time.

    • Josh Marshall (talkingpointsmemo [dot] com [slash] edblog [slash] nice), in the wake of the Nice murders, discusses why people from the French Muslim community commit acts of terror, and says Olivier Roy refers to the “Islamicization of radicalism.” In Marshall’s words, “n other words, desperate, angry, unhappy people seek a rationalization for their anger in Islamic radicalism rather than in Islam per se.” Sounds about right to me.

    –alopecia