Breitbart Site Engages in Absurd ‘Vetting’


One of the features at Breitbart.com these days is something they call “the vetting.” It’s a series of articles purporting to show the real Obama by digging up obscure pictures and statements from decades ago that show that he’s really a Muslim, communist, socialist, atheist or whatever bugaboo they’re going for this week.

In this piece, they actually debunk an idiotic claim making the rounds in right-wing emails that a picture of Obama in 1980 shows him standing next to William Ayers. The writer, Charles C. Johnson, rightly points out that the guy standing next to Obama is a fellow student, not Ayers, who is 17 years older than Obama. But then he finds an old quote from a fellow student who took the picture of Obama, which he falsely characterizes as being “opposed to America’s military.”

I’m not in favor of any overly active militarization, nationalistic, or otherwise. Militarization leads to militarization. If you strengthen your armies against the belief that someone else is strengthening theirs, they will strengthen theirs and it’s an endless, vicious continuum.

On Planet Wingnuttia, you see, liberals are responsible for everything said by anyone who takes your picture. And then Johnson unleashes this bit of stupid:

Given Obama’s anti-military views at the time, and given how quickly President Obama has been slashing defense spending and downgrading U.S. military capabilities, it’s worth wondering whether he still shares that view, despite many campaign-friendly photo-ops with the troops.

Obama? Slashing defense spending? Join me on this planet for a moment, where Obama’s defense secretary has been parroting Republican rhetoric about how even the miniscule defense cuts agreed to by the Republicans in the sequestration deal — a tiny drop in defense spending — will undermine America’s ability to defend itself. That assertion is absolutely laughable, of course, as is the notion that Obama has been “slashing defense spending.” These people just aren’t on the same planet the rest of us are.

Comments

  1. Randomfactor says

    These people just aren’t on the same planet the rest of us are.

    May be. But they vote here by absentee ballot.

  2. Brain Hertz says

    …miniscule defense cuts agreed to by the Republicans in the sequestration deal — a tiny drop in defense spending…

    Is that true? I had been under the impression that the cuts agreed in the sequestration deal amounted to only a reduction in the planned increase in defense spending.

  3. d cwilson says

    “Vetting” is just another coded way of saying Obama is Not Like Us.

    Wingnuts have decided that since Obama refuses to oblige them by having a record as a radical socialist out to undermine America from the inside, they’re going to invent one for him. That their arguments are absurd and lacking in basic facts is irrelevant. Reality must be remade to conform to the agenda.

  4. criticaldragon1177 says

    Ed Brayton,

    If Obama was so week on defense why did he authorize the attack on Osama bin Ladin when even Bush didn’t? Not to mention I don’t see any sign that our military will be less capable of defending us.

  5. raven says

    Reality must be remade to conform to the agenda.

    They’ve been reading their instruction manual, Orwell’s 1984 again.

    The past is remade as many times as it has to be.

    Orwell 1984:

    ‘Who controls the past,’ ran the Party slogan, ‘controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.’

    And yet the past, though of its nature alterable, never had been altered. Whatever was true now was true from everlasting to everlasting. It was quite simple. All that was needed was an unending series of victories over your own memory. ‘Reality control’, they called it: in Newspeak, ‘doublethink’.

    The world they want us to live in is pretty dismal. Breitbart died young and suddenly. Maybe there are gods after all.

  6. raven says

    If Obama was so week on defense why did he authorize the attack on Osama bin Ladin when even Bush didn’t?

    Obama’s military record as Commander in Chief is far better than moron Bush’s.

    1. Al Qaeda has been hammered pretty badly. In Afghanistan, most of them are dead or hiding.

    2. He got Osama bin Laden in a highly risky, politically damaging operation that just barely succeeded. It’s obvious the Pakistani’s were hiding him in luxury.

    3. We actually won one of our little brushfire wars and quite easily too, nothing like the swamps of Bush’s wars. Libya.

    4. He managed to get us out of Iraq, a mistake and fiasco if there ever was one that was bleeding us out of money and our own kids aka “soldiers”.

    5. Afghanistan is slowly winding down. We didn’t accomplish our objective of draining that swamp but no one else has ever done it either. The British and Russians gave up too.

    6. There haven’t been any major Moslem terrorist incidents in the USA during his tenure. A lot of plots that never went too far. Two thirds of all terrorist plots and incidents have though, been right wing extremists and fundie xians.

    He could declare a war on domestic terrorists but the Tea Party/GOP would freak out. Those are their buddies.

  7. StevoR says

    These people just aren’t on the same planet the rest of us are.

    If only that were true..

  8. StevoR says

    Would love to see “these people” land on Mars – or Mercury – or best of all Pluto.

    Oh wait, actually Sedna or Eris would be the best planet for them as mnay Astronomical Units away as possible!

    (Sedna would take them out much further but Eris is considerably more distant right now. Hmm.. decisions, decisions!)

  9. says

    criticaldragon wrote:

    If Obama was so week on defense why did he authorize the attack on Osama bin Ladin when even Bush didn’t? Not to mention I don’t see any sign that our military will be less capable of defending us.

    Why the heck would you ask me that question? I’m not claiming Obama is weak on defense. I’m claiming that the notion that he is weak on defense is absurd.

  10. Chiroptera says

    Has anyone one else noticed that these nuts are still spending so much of their time searching for some obscure fictional link to some “evil ideology” to pin on him…rather than look at the real polical record that he alrady has now that he’s been in office for three and a half years?

  11. Ben P says

    Has anyone one else noticed that these nuts are still spending so much of their time searching for some obscure fictional link to some “evil ideology” to pin on him…rather than look at the real polical record that he alrady has now that he’s been in office for three and a half years?

    They have to.

    The Republican Party has over the past several years marginalized and excluded anyone who holds views that the Republicans ought to be a “loyal opposition.” It may be typical for politicians to work with the other side then ramp up the rhetoric during campaign season, but even relatively solid republicans who will otherwise compromise to reach good legislation have been pushed out (see e.g. Dick Lugar)

    There is no middle ground left to just paint Obama as an honest guy who has different opinions about how the country ought to be run. The people have been fed so much about him being a communist/muslim/radical that any effort to portray him as reasonable compromises the credibility of the speaker.

    The interesting thing to me is that if called out on this, Republicans will inevitably, and almost universally respond by saying this is all just fair turnabout because liberals did the same thing to Bush. I’m not sure if this implies they’re just calling Obama a radical out of partisanship, or if they truly believe Obama is a radical.

  12. d cwilson says

    The interesting thing to me is that if called out on this, Republicans will inevitably, and almost universally respond by saying this is all just fair turnabout because liberals did the same thing to Bush.

    Which is pure bullshit. Ted Kennedy worked with the Bush administration on the (admittedly horrendous) NCLB law.

    Today, republicans are opposing ideas that they used to endorse (individual mandate, cap and trade, the Dream Act), solely because Obama got his radical socialist cooties all over them.

  13. says

    …even the miniscule defense cuts agreed to by the Republicans in the sequestration deal…

    To be fair, they never planned to follow the agreement they agreed to, even as they were agreeing to it.

    criticaldragon1177 “Not to mention I don’t see any sign that our military will be less capable of defending us.”
    You don’t see any signs because Obama’s hiding them! But you’ll be laughing out of the other side of your face when North Korean, Iran and Punxsutawney unleash their Terror Arsenal on us!

    Chiroptera “Has anyone one else noticed that these nuts are still spending so much of their time searching for some obscure fictional link to some ‘evil ideology’ to pin on him…rather than look at the real polical record that he alrady has now that he’s been in office for three and a half years?”
    Because his actual record doesn’t match the story they want to believe. Actual history is to Partisan history like geology is to YEC geology.

  14. Ben P says

    Which is pure bullshit. Ted Kennedy worked with the Bush administration on the (admittedly horrendous) NCLB law.

    Today, republicans are opposing ideas that they used to endorse (individual mandate, cap and trade, the Dream Act), solely because Obama got his radical socialist cooties all over them.

    I agree with your sentiment, but not on precisely the same details because it’s not quite what I was referring to.

    Some liberals certainly did talk about George Bush as if he was the worst president ever and some evil dictator who was going to overthrow the constitution and start herding Americans into camps.

    The difference is, those people were for the most part random Kos journalists and other random bloggers who have little pull with anyone. Mainstream liberal commentators and congressional democrats, with very few exceptions, generally toed a pretty civil line.

    With republicans, this kind of criticism has gone mainstream, but they still insist it’s just fair turnabout.

  15. Chris from Europe says

    Some liberals certainly did talk about George Bush as if he was the worst president ever and some evil dictator who was going to overthrow the constitution and start herding Americans into camps.

    He was the worst President in recent time. I’m amazed that there are people who want to relativize that. And he did a lot of damage on civil liberties and the perception of civil liberties. Instead of doing the right thing, stepping down after ignoring the warnings in respect to 9/11 and playing political games with Clinton administration experts, they managed to blame proper procedure and civil liberties.

    Given his SC appointments and Republican criminalization policies, the latter half isn’t that far off.

  16. ospalh says

    I don’t even get the point with the original quote.
    Being against an “overly active militarization” is bad?
    Can somebody please explain this to a poor European?

    When i read the quote i see “Arms races are bad. Try to avoid them.” This is controversial? Do you have to be a militarist, pro militarization?

    I see that politicians have to praise the courage, sacrifice and everything of the individual soldiers, but this is something different.

  17. gratch says

    I think everyone is missing the point here. Obviously Obama’s views reflect the views of his picture taker since, having taken the picture, the man had STOLEN HIS SOUL!!!!

    Makes as much sense as the rest of that nonsense.

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