steve benen

steve benen: Page 1

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Democrats, far-left praise Marco Rubio's immigration moves (NCLR; Sharry; IPC; Obama and Gutierrez spox) - 01/20/13

In a January 18, 2013 press release, Marco Rubio lists some of the supposed conservatives who support his immigration amnesty plan ( peekURL.com/zycdzeU ).

To be balanced, here are some positive mentions of his plan (or at least support for his actions on comprehensive immigration reform) from those Rubio should be opposing on immigration: the Democrats and the far-left.

No, Sharron Angle isn't calling Social Security "wicked" (Harry Reid is lying) - 10/28/10

[See the update: Harry Reid is lying about Angle's comments]

The Democratic Party's "Accountability Project" uploaded [1] the audio below, apparently trying to make people think that Sharron Angle is calling Social Security and similar programs "wicked". In fact, she's not calling those programs "wicked". What she considers wicked are those who turn their backs on the least among them, relying on government programs to take care of people they should be taking care of. On the audio she accepts social safety net programs as a reality, she just thinks that people should take care of those in their own communities more than they do.

Here's the relevant part of the audio:

We as a nation have been walking away from our constitutional freedom and relying on government instead to take care of the widow and the orphan. Isn't that what He says? True religion and [inaudible] for God is that you care for the widow and the orphan. Isn't that the poor and needy among us? And, yet, we're saying, let the government have all these programs now: AFDC, Medicare, Social Security, and that's fine. But, isn't it we that should be thinking about this? Isn't it us that should be caring in our community for those that the Lord has called us [inaudible, "to lead"?], saying you honor Him, you love Him, if you care for these the least among you.

Those trying to mislead about this include Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly [2]:

Also keep in mind, Angle has been trying to convince Nevadans that she actually wants to preserve Social Security, despite having already committed herself to trying to "phase out" the bedrock American safety-net program. What we have, then, is a borderline-deranged Senate hopeful telling reporters she supports Social Security, while quietly telling supporters she considers Social Security -- along with Medicare, abortion, divorce, and gay marriage -- to be "wicked."

She does in fact consider abortion to be "wicked" but, once again, the same isn't true of social welfare programs themselves. What she considers "wicked" is people turning their backs on the least among them.

As can be seen, I'm not in any way a fan of Sharron Angle or the Tea Parties. It's beyond pathetic that her opponents can't make a good case against someone out on the fringe but have to try to mislead instead.

UPDATE: Harry Reid has released a deceptive new ad entitled 'Sharron Angle Called Social Security and Medicare "Wicked"' and with the description "In Sharron Angle's Nevada, Social Security and Medicare would be eliminated because they are "wicked" and defy the laws of God as she sees them. While she won't talk to media or voteres, we've compiled her greatest hits." Watch it here: peekurl.com/vypitld

The ad takes her comments out of context for the reasons discussed above: Harry Reid is lying.

------------------
[1] accountabilityproject.com
[2] washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_10/026349.php (I strongly recommend against linking to the Washington Monthly, see that link for the details).

Here's the audio, also available at peekURL.com/vx5q4tm

Dennis Welch, Kos, Amanda Terkel, Steve Benen, Ben Smith, Ben Frumin smear Jan Brewer over quote - 06/02/10

Arizona governor Jan Brewer is threatening to cost powerful people money and power through actions such as signing that state's new anti-illegal immigration law. Their lower-level hacks are currently swinging into action, deliberately misinterpreting a quote Brewer made in a disreputable attempt to claim that she inflated her father's war record [UPDATE: Statement from Brewer below]. Some are listed below, and if you find others please leave a comment.

During World War 2, Brewer's father worked at a Navy munitions depot in Nevada; he died in 1955 as a result of lung disease from that job. Brewer made the quote that's being misinterpreted in an interview with the Arizona Republic (link) where she spoke about the names she's been called:

"The Nazi comments . . . they are awful... Knowing that my father died fighting the Nazi regime in Germany, that I lost him when I was 11 because of that . . . and then to have them call me Hitler's daughter. It hurts. It's ugliness beyond anything I've ever experienced."

If Noam Chomsky were here, he might point out that there are various ways to interpret that quote, such as "died [as a later result of] fighting the Nazi regime in Germany", or "died fighting the Nazi regime [which was located] in Germany". In order to obtain the result that illegal immigration supporters want you to obtain, you're going to need to forget about very basic math: if she meant to say he died during World War 2, the youngest she could be is 76. No one in their right mind would think she's 76. If she were trying to lie, she would have adjusted her age downward in the quote to "when I was one years old". Further, in a speech a few months ago she described the backstory (link):

The governor's father did fight the Nazis and support the war effort, but he did it here at a munitions plant in the United States, not as a soldier in the European theater.

Brewer recounted the story of her father's war service during a March breakfast speech in the East Valley, saying that “Wilford Drinkwine believed his country needed him during World War II.”

In that speech, Brewer recalled how that belief prompted Drinkwine to move his family to the Nevada desert to take a job at the country's largest Navy munitions depot. She was born a year or two later; her father succumbed to lung disease before she was a teenager.

“Years of breathing poisonous fumes around harsh chemicals finally took his life,” Brewer said in that speech. “Wilford Drinkwine was my father. I was 11 years old.”

Those smearing Brewer include the following. None of the following attempt to explain how - if one is to buy their interpretation of her comments - Brewer would be claiming to be at least 76 years old. None except the first reference the fact that she's told the accurate story in past instances:

* Dennis Welch of the Arizona Guardian
arizonaguardian.com/azg/index.php?option=com_content&
view=article&id=2101:brewer&catid=937:campaigns-a-elections-fp
He appears to be the originator of the smear, and his article starts with: "Gov. Jan Brewer said in a recent interview that her father died fighting Nazis in Germany. In fact, the death of Wilford Drinkwine came 10 years after World War II had ended." That's then followed by:

"She wasn't embellishing the story at all," [Paul Senseman, the governor's spokesman] said Tuesday. "You're reading something into this that isn't there."

He added that the governor has been very clear in the past about how her father died. Drinkwine was on full medical disability at the time of his death, Senseman said.

In a 2008 interview with the Republic, Brewer said her family was forced to move to California shortly before his death because of his health problems.

Brewer, 65, recounts similar stories in other media interviews and recent speeches.

Dennis Welch knew about what she's said about her background in the past, but choose to deliberately misinterpret her quote instead.

* Kos of DailyKos
dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/6/2/872320/
-AZ-Gov.-Jan-Brewer-lies-...-about-her-fathers-death
He refers to the "Latino ethnic cleansing law" and says, "Ah yes, claiming her father died fighting Nazis in Germany should, in no way, be construed as implying that her father died fighting Nazis in Germany." Needless to say, he's deliberately misinterpreting her quote.

* Steve Benen of Washington Monthly
washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_06/024077.php
His post is entitled "WHEN REPUBLICANS LIE ABOUT RELATIVES' SERVICE RECORDS" and he references and parrots Kos: "I'm confused. When Brewer said her "father died fighting the Nazi regime in Germany," that wasn't intended to mean that her father was an American soldier in Germany during the Nazi regime?"
As with the others, what he claims she said is simply his misinterpretation.

* Amanda Terkel of ThinkProgress
thinkprogress.org/2010/06/02/brewer-nazis-father
She says:

While comparisons equating Brewer with Nazis are over the top and not constructive, Brewer’s anecdote doesn’t really stack up. The Arizona Guardian reports that in fact, “the death of Wilford Drinkwine came 10 years after World War II had ended. During the war, Drinkwine worked as a civilian supervisor for a naval munitions depot in Hawthorne, Nev. He died of lung disease in 1955 in California.” Brewer’s spokesman justified the governor’s statement, claiming Drinkwine “eventually died from the toxic fumes he inhaled” while working at the factory. (HT: Markos)

Of course, what doesn't "stack up" is Terkel's interpretation of Brewer's quote. The spokesman's comment isn't a "justification", it's an explanation.

* Ben Smith of the Politico
politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0610/Brewer_claim_on_fathers_death_draws_scrutiny.html
He links the AZ Republic interview and the Arizona Guardian story, but fails to do any more reporting than any of the others listed who are open about being partisans.

* Ben Frumin of TalkingPointsMemo
tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/
az-gov-my-dad-died-fighting-the-nazis-in-germany-not-quite.php
His post, which isn't as bad as some others, does include this:

It seems entirely possible that Brewer simply meant that her father died of an illness that was a direct cause of his employment at a wartime munitions factor.

UPDATE: Brewer has released a statement (link):

"My father, Wilford Drinkwine, moved our family before I was born from Minnesota to Nevada to work at the Hawthorne Ammunition Depot in Western Nevada at the outset of World War II. He passed away when I was 11 years old. His death came after a long and painful battle with lung disease, contracted following years of exposure to hazardous chemicals and toxic fumes while working as a civil servant at the base.

"I loved my father and was proud to hear him tell me that he was doing his part to help fight the Nazis in Germany. It's a similar story that I have heard from countless people from my parent's generation -- from women who worked in the factories to other family friends I met growing up near the depot. My father and mother instilled in me an understanding that many of those defenders of freedom who lost their lives in World War II never set foot on the battlefield.

"Even in the end, when my dad struggled for breath, he never regretted serving his country, helping free Europe from Hitler's grip. I have proudly recounted his story in many places for many years. My father's patriotism and sacrifice needs no embellishment."

Reason #73218 why you can't trust Steve Benen, Alex Pareene, John Aravosis, HuffPost, and GottaLaff (McCain on illegal aliens "intentionally causing accidents") - 04/21/10

Yesterday in an appearance on the Bill O'Reilly show, John McCain said among other, more important things, that he supports Arizona's tough new immigration bill (not yet a law) because "the people whose homes and property are being violated. It's the drive-by that -- the drivers of cars with illegals in it that are intentionally causing accidents on the freeway." You can watch it here: peekURL.com/vztpe5h

Washington Monthly deletes comment on post extolling "diversity of thought", openness - 02/10/09

The Washington Monthly has a habit of deleting comments, and they're even willing to do it on entries lionizing Barack Obama for being open to a "diversity of thought". I guess some "diversities of thought" are more equal than others.

"Liberals" support quotas, just not for white men, southerners (Obama cabinet) - 12/22/08

Many "liberals" believe in quotas in everything, whether they admit it or not. However, there are limits to liberalism. Namely, when the quota involves white men, especially white men from the South. Following are four recent examples involving the selections Barack Obama has made for his cabinet and top administration positions. These are reactions to the article "Southerners are the missing group in Obama's Cabinet" (link), which quotes Larry Sabato as saying:

"Obama scored a tremendous advance for Democrats in winning the three large Southern states and ignored them... I'm just stunned. It was the one grouping completely ignored."

Steve Benen/Washington Monthly gets hat trick: deletes three comments in one day - 10/04/08

Steve Benen of the Washington Monthly has scored a hat trick: he or his helpers deleted three comments I left on his entries today. And, the deletions happened very shortly after I left the comments, so obviously they're very worried about their readers learning about the things that Steve Benen isn't willing to tell them.

Scott Shane/NYT's pro-BHO spin on Bill Ayers/Barack Obama collaboration - 10/04/08

Scott Shane of the New York Times offers "Obama and '60s Bomber: A Look Into Crossed Paths" (originally titled "Obama Had Met Ayers, but the Two Are Not Close"). If you believe the NYT, then everything's fine and dandy, and Barack Obama and 60s radical Bill Ayers are not close. The fact that they aren't close and never were close and nothing funny went on and there's nothing to see here is especially important because Ayers is a former and allegedly unrepentant terrorist who's since been, in Shane's words, "rehabilitated".

On the other hand, if you actually want the truth, compare the second paragraph on page 2 ("In fact, according to several people involved...") to the email here. Why, it's almost like Shane is reading from a script provided by Ken Rolling, the former executive director of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge.

And, for much more, see this response to the article: NYT's Ayers-Obama Whitewash. Regarding Scott Shane letting Ayers claim that he mostly only wanted to do property damage with his bombs, see this.

See also this from Steve Diamond:

an exchange of letters in late 1994, copies of which I obtained from Brown University, between Vartan Gregorian, then President of Brown and the individual responsible for assessing applications for grants from the national Annenberg Challenge, and Bill Ayers, the founder of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, demonstrates that Ayers played a direct role in "composing" the Challenge's board of directors... I was interviewed at length by the New York Times for today’s story. In fact, this was the third Times reporter to interview me about the Ayers/Obama relationship - and I provided the Times with the letters I discuss here. They are not mentioned in the story at all.

See also "Ayers Was on Woods Fund Board with Obama When He Stepped on Flag" (LGF, peekURL.com/zab252h). That links to this August 2001 Chicago Magazine article entitled "No Regrets"; it includes a picture of Bill Ayers stepping on a U.S. flag. It also links to 'Obama served on a board with former Weather Underground member William Ayers and "that relationship with Mr. Ayers on this board continued after 9/11"', a fact check of a Hillary Clinton statement about Obama's association with Ayers (link). They agree that her statement was truthful.

And, see this:

It turns out as these ten key points confirm what I have argued all along - that Bill Ayers was responsible for the elevation of Obama to the Chicago Annenberg Challenge board and the New York Times reporting on this story actually supports my conclusion, though inadvertently.

BHO and Ayers also appeared at a far-left University of Chicago 11/20/1997 event about juvenile justice (link, copy here). The article also quotes Michelle Obama.

10/9/08: Obama lies again, with this being the latest explanation for his actions: "The gentleman in question, Bill Ayers, is a college professor, teaches education at the University of Illinois... That's how i met him -- working on a school reform project that was funded by an ambassador and very close friend of Ronald Reagan's" along with "a bunch of conservative businessmen and civic leaders... Ultimately, I ended up learning about the fact that he had engaged in this reprehensible act 40 years ago, but I was eight years old at the time and I assumed that he had been rehabilitated." (link) As indicated above, Obama continued working with him after 9/11/01, when even the most willingly blind person could see what Ayers was all about.

~ Who's helping the NYT spread their spin? ~

The people listed below all share one thing in common: they pretend that that NYT was actually trying to write an investigative report rather than a cover-up, and they all come to the conclusion that there's nothing there because the NYT says there's nothing there. Whether they actually believe that or whether they're just trying to sell the NYT's lies isn't clear.

* Steve Benen of Washington Monthly says the NYT "couldn't find any dirt", trying to make his readers think the NYT was looking for dirt rather than covering for BHO (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_10/015024.php). A comment I left was later deleted.

* Ben Smith from The Politico tries a similar technique: "though the Times has pinned down a couple of new details on the relationship, there's no real news, and the main new detail is exculpatory: A different Chicago figure picked Obama to chair an education fund. The conservative blog reaction to the story is outrage, as it has failed to turn up the secret Rosetta Stone that many seem to believe will reveal some deeper truth about Obama's politics." (politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1008/Republicans_again_reading_the_Times.html?showall)

* Juliet Eilperin of the Washington Post (voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html). She starts out with snark and a lie: "It turns out GOP vice presidential nominee does like the mainstream media after all -- at least, when it's publishing unflattering stories about Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama." The NYT article isn't "unflattering", it's an attempt at a cover-up.

She then spins the story the same way the BHO campaign does: "In fact, both a Washington Post article in April and today's New York Times piece revealed Obama and Ayers to have had only a casual association: the former radical hosted a coffee for Obama's first bid for state Senate, they served together on an educational charity board and both live in Chicago's Hyde Park."

The WaPo article she mentions is "Former '60s Radical Is Now Considered Mainstream in Chicago" by Peter Slevin (link). That WaPo article is even more of a cover-up than the one from the NYT; in fact, almost everything in there tries to portray Ayers as an upstanding member of his community, and the only link to Obama is this cozy scene: The two men served for three years on the board of the Woods Fund, an anti-poverty group. The board, which Obama has since left, was small and collegial, said chair Laura Washington, who served with them. It met four times a year for a half-day, mostly to approve grants, she said. The atmosphere was "friendly but businesslike." Needless to say, a real reporter would try to determine what Washington isn't saying, but that leaves Peter Slevin out.

* Michael Shaw of the Huffington Post - who concentrates on a lightweight interpretation of images - basically reads from the card he's been handed: "all kinds of long hashed-over and discredited innuendos... resuscitating feeble allegations -- all then discounted..." (huffingtonpost.com/michael-shaw/reading-the-pictures-emny_b_131855.html)

* Martina Stewart of CNN references the NYT article and then says: "Several other publications, including the Washington Post, Time magazine, the Chicago Sun-Times, The New Yorker and The New Republic, have debunked the idea that Obama and Ayers had a close relationship." (says) However, an earlier version of the article - the change not noted - had "The National Review" in place of "The New Republic". (link) Presumably that was just a mistake and not (like their other coverage) an attempt to deceive.

* Sockpuppets, various. BHO supporters are clogging up MSM comments boards with Winner-style attacks. See, for instance, the 04:15 PM comment from "John" and the 04:26 PM comment from "Larry" at latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2008/10/sarah-palinbill.html and the 8:06 PM comment from Luke2 and the 7:34 PM comment from seemstome at voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html. If I didn't think they were just citizens voicing their opinions I'd think they were actually paid workers for the Obama campaign.

* Izvestia, aka CNN, offers a "Fact Check" that discusses Sarah Palin's comment that BHO is "palling around with terrorists" (link). Obviously, Palin should have put it in the correct legalistic format: "in the recent past, Barack Obama has worked with and associated with known and unrepentant terrorists". If she had, CNN wouldn't have been able to pretend that her non-legalistic formation was binding: 'Verdict: False. There is no indication that Ayers and Obama are now "palling around," or that they have had an ongoing relationship in the past three years. Also, there is nothing to suggest that Ayers is now involved in terrorist activity or that other Obama associates are.' No really: they actually try to pretend that her imprecise wording is more important than BHO's past collaboration with and association with a terrorist.

* Todd Beeton links to both CNN and the NYT and continues the trends discussed above: mydd.com/story/2008/10/5/164214/299

* Obsequious toady, repeat liar, and supporter of illegal activity Joe Klein offers "Embarracuda", an obvious attempt to deceive (time-blog.com/swampland/2008/10/embarracuda.html). Needless to say, he downplays the Obama-Ayers connection and even works in a BHO talking point about how BHO was just a child when the Weather Underground were terrorizing the U.S.: Over the weekend, [Sarah Palin] picked up on an article in The New York Times, which essentially says that Barack Obama and the former terrorist Bill Ayers have crossed paths in Chicago, served on a couple of charitable boards together, but aren't particularly close. To Palin--or her scriptwriters--this means that Obama has been "palling around" with terrorists. Now, I wish Ayers had done some serious jail time; he certainly needed to pay some penance for his youthful criminality--even if most people in Chicago, including the mayor, have decided that he has something of value to say about education. But I can also understand how Obama, who was a child when Ayers was cutting his idiot swath, would not quite understand the enormity of the professor's background...

* Scott Conroy of CBS News offers "Lagging In The Polls, Palin Shifts To Fear Tactics" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml), which follows 10/4's equally biased "Palin Says She Wants To Talk About Issues, Adds That Obama Pals With A Terrorist" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml). In the first article he says: '[Palin] said [Obama and Ayers] had a relationship akin to being "pals," even though the Associated Press and many other news outlets have concluded that Obama and Ayers' relationship added up to far less than a close friendship.' Needless to say, that's extremely disingenuous.

* Dana Milbank of the Washington Post.

10/6/08 UPDATE: The latest lie from the BHO campaign is that BHO had little knowledge of the radical past of Ayers and the Weatherman group. This was presented by David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs (thepage.time.com/mccain-campaign-release-on-obama-and-ayers); see Joe Klein retailing their lie above.

Steve Benen/Washington Monthly continues proud tradition of deleting comments - 09/23/08

During the Kevin Drum years at Washington Monthly, several of my on-topic, non-abusive comments were deleted. As pointed out here a few times, that means you can't trust anything you read there: everything has to be double-checked because they're willing to delete fact-checking by their readers. (I also noted that many of their old pages are full of spam, and if you link to those pages it might harm your search engine ranking.)

Now, Steve Benen continues that fine WM tradition. The following comment I left on washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_09/014836.php is no longer there. Here it is, as posted:
The latest BHO lie appears to be that McCain only supports "reform" for the Irish, when - just like Bush, the MexicanGovernment, and BHO - he wants it for almost everyone.

You can't trust those like Benen who try to mislead you about issues like this.
That's a reference to this sentence from the roundup at that WM page:
McCain wants a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants ... from Ireland.
It also references Benen's habit of trying to pretend that McCain has flip-flopped on amnesty.

Washington Post: America's finest source for bad reporting (Palin "slashed" funds story) - 09/02/08

The Washington Post recently published a blog post about Sarah Palin (in their words) "slash[ing]" funds to a non-profit group. Except, what they got from the state of Alaska alone was over three times what they got from all government sources combined in 2006. Let's take a look at the WaPo's "downstream", the three-eyed fish who gobble up what the WaPo sludges out.

"Liberals" project, racialize, trivialize Chertoff comment - 04/05/07

Please become slightly hyponatremic and slightly anemic and set the hair trigger on your Hypersensitivity Meter to 11 and read the following:

...In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Michael Chertoff, who arrives in Britain tomorrow for talks with John Reid, the Home Secretary, said the US was determined to build extra defences against so-called "clean skin" terrorists from Europe...

NAU apologists - 11/24/06

[List below updated 12/11/07]

Recently, Rep. Tom Tancredo was quoted as saying this:

"People have to understand what we're talking about here. The president of the United States is an internationalist... He is going to do what he can to create a place where the idea of America is just that – it's an idea. It's not an actual place defined by borders. I mean this is where this guy is really going... I know this is dramatic – or maybe somebody would say overly dramatic – but I'm telling you, that everything I see leads me to believe that this whole idea of the North American Union, it's not something that just is written about by right-wing fringe kooks. It is something in the head of the president of the United States, the president of Mexico, I think the prime minister of Canada buys into it... And they would just tell you, 'Well, sure, it's a natural thing. It's part of the great globalization ... of the economy.' They assume it's a natural, evolutionary event that's going to occur here. I hope they're wrong and I'm going to try my best to make sure they're wrong. But I'm telling you the tide is great. The tide is moving in their direction. We have to say that."

This has resulted in various people calling Tancredo names or disputing that such a plan is underway. And, some of them dispute that such a plan exists, but then say that such an idea isn't so bad after all. While it's certainly possible to disagree with Tancredo's assessment, all of the comments I've seen involve some form of name-calling and none of them discuss the issue on its merits. In some cases this might be actual pro-NAU propaganda, in others it might be due to opposition to Tancredo's support for our immigration laws, in others it might be a knee-jerk defense of Bush, and in some it might be due to the fact that many bloggers aren't, shall we say, that good at research and analysis.

* Judd Legum of Think Progress says: "You might think the right would immediately repudiate this kind of conspiracy theory. You'd be wrong." As could be expected from that site, most of the comments are name-calling. Some however support the NAU concept.

* Steve Benen of The Carpetbagger says: "Now, far be it for me to defend the president against an unhinged attack from a far-right lawmaker, but does anyone seriously believe that the Bush White House wants to dissolve U.S. borders altogether?" At least two out of five comments, while calling names, provide facts on the SPP.

* "AllahPundit" says: "Oh Lord... We get e-mails from those people all the time. We... do not publish them... Update: HotAir commenters (most of them) agree: Tancredo’s a prophet whose only crime is seeing too clearly the nefarious machinations towards one-world government that are happening under our very noses!" (HotAir is run by Michelle Malkin; the first post I made to her immigration blog concerned the SPP. Her position on this matter isn't known.)

* "Captain Ed" (who isn't a real captain) says: "Tom Tancredo reminds people today why he will forever remain a fringe element in American politics... This is absurd. George Bush may not have responded very well to immigration concerns from his base, but he's done more than his father, Bill Clinton, and even Ronald Reagan in bolstering border security. Tancredo is engaging in mindless demagoguery with these doomsday descriptions, and moving closer to the realms of paranoia." Most of those commenting disagree.

* John Podhoretz says: "I speculate in my book, Can She Be Stopped?, that Tancredo will run as a third-party candidate in 2008. Sounds like he'd be perfect to top Lyndon LaRouche's ticket. If you are serious about the importance of immigration restriction, you'd best be looking for a leader who hasn't chosen to place himself beyond the political fringe."

* Mark Steyn says: "Chances of an EU-style sovereignty pooling arrangement in North America? Zero per cent – whatever Tom Tancredo and the CFR say."

* SeeDubya from Junkyard Blog mockingly refers to "internationalist conspiracy", "sweet, sweet New World Order", "Illuminati endgame", and pretends that the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board supports U.S. sovereignty.

* MY Vast Right Wing Conspiracy calls Tancredo various names such as "barking moonbat".

* Alexander McClure at Wizbang Politics says: "...I hope the White House throws all of its resources into this race to make sure that Tancredo also goes into retirement. He is an embarrasment to the party."

* John Hawkins at Right Wing News had a debate with Jerome Corsi on the topic. While Hawkins is not a Bush apologist in the Captain Ed/RedState/BlogsForBush mold, he is on the wrong side of this issue.

* "Appalacian Scribe" John Norris Brown says: "Why anyone gives this nutcase credibility is beyond me."

* Ragnar Danneskjold at the Jawa Report says: One would think that a U.S. Congressman would realize that any statement that starts with "I know this is dramatic" and proceeds to defend the ideas of "right-wing fringe kooks" is pretty unlikely to go anywhere good.

3/22/07 UPDATE:
* Ezra of People for the American Way's Right Wing Watch says, among other things (rightwingwatch.org/2007/03/phyllis_schlafl_2.html):

...the Eagle Forum published a list of questions for its supporters to ask candidates on the trail, ranging from Schlafly's theory of "supremacist judges" to the John Birch-esque "North American Union." She says her plan is working, according to "Swift Vet" co-author and fellow "North American Union" enthusiast Jerome Corsi...

A few links are included in that excerpt, including one linking the first "North American Union" to Wikipedia's entry on "black helicopters".

6/27/07 UPDATE:
* Joshua Holland, staff writer for Alternet, joins the list with "Debunking the North American Union Conspiracy Theory" (alternet.org/audits/54184). He can't even get past the second paragraph without violating Godwin's Rule:

The North American Union story is an offspring of the John Birch Society right, with its attendant xenophobia and paranoia. It comes complete with a shadowy international cabal intent on stabbing decent, hard-working Americans in the back -- Dolchstoss!

He mentions the Council of Canadians, without mentioning that they're a leftwing group and thus tend to disprove his contention that the NAU "story" is just a rightwing issue. And, he mentions some of the "dots" making up the NAU "story", but he just can't connect them.

8/13/07 UPDATE:
* Chris Hayes of The Nation offers "The NAFTA Superhighway" and says that highway is fictional. Some of the letters say he's full of it, with one claiming that Katrina vanden Heuvel is a member of the CFR [11/05/10 UPDATE: Katrina vanden Heuvel is indeed a member of the CFR].

* Matt Yglesias links approvingly to his article in the post "The Highway That Wasn't There".

* Both join Vice President Dick Cheney in claiming there's no such highway.

* In early August 2007, Stephen Colbert had a little bit of "fun": youtube.com/watch?v=Ookak1IQJ3U

8/24/07 UPDATE:
* Seattle Times columnist Bruce Ramsey offers "Bet your bottom amero that U.S. sovereignty is safe". He bases his conclusion that there's no plan to create a NAU by asking... "the government's chief negotiator on trade, Susan Schwab". She tells him it's just an "urban legend". And, he believes what she says. The JBS - mentioned in his piece - responds here.

* The Fox News "all stars" (Fred Barnes, Juan Williams, and Charles Krauthammer with host Brit Hume) play the Bush quote and then have a bit of fun here: youtube.com/watch?v=TT4tBvRDy38 Krauthammer whitewashes the Bilderberg conferences, saying that he went to one. He compares those who think the NAU is possible to those who believe that Elvis is still alive. Barnes and Williams join in with the "fun". Just because these three idiots say people aren't pushing for it shouldn't be taken as proof that it is being pushed, but...

9/15/07 UPDATE:
* Richard Reeb at the Claremont Institute offers the post "We've Got Our Nut Jobs Too/Right Wing Conspiracy Theory".

11/27/07 UPDATE: Drake Bennett of the Boston Globe offers "The amero conspiracy": ...The NAU may be the quintessential conspiracy theory for our time, according to scholars studying what the historian Richard Hofstadter famously called the "paranoid style" in American politics. The theory elegantly weaves old fears and new realities into one coherent and all-encompassing plan... [etc. etc.]...

12/03/07 UPDATE: Gretel Kovach of Newsweek offers a very weak debunking attempt of the NAFTA Superhighway and the NAU in "Highway To Hell?" (newsweek.com/id/73372). That's linked to by the Washington Post's "Fact Checker", Michael Dobbs (blog.washingtonpost.com/fact-checker/2007/12/a_superhighway_to_nowhere.html), who offers his own weak attempt. And, on 11/30/07, Stephen Braun of the Los Angeles Times offered "Paul believes in threat of North American superhighway" (link). It's similar to the WaPo's "Fact Checker" article, including a Stephen Colbert "joke". And:

Federal and state highway and trade officials and transportation consultants reacted Thursday with befuddlement and amusement. The fearsome secret international highway project Paul described does not exist, they said... ...the Trilateral Commission [is] an enduring bugaboo of conspiracy theorists... As alarms about NAFTA's illusory highway have spread across the Web, the issue's whiff of paranoia has ignited sparks of humor... [Colbert "joke"]

12/09/07 UPDATE: Matt Stearns of McClatchy Newspapers offers his own "debunking".

12/11/07 UPDATE: The SPLC has also tried to cast doubts on these schemes.