Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 18, 2009

A PEEK INTO THE MIND OF A NUT.... On Monday night, former Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-Ariz.) appeared on MSNBC's "Hardball," and delivered a doozy of a performance. The former radio host and Abramoff pal initially said he'd like to see more of Bush's economic policies of the last eight years. Hayworth seemed pretty sincere about it.

But what was especially striking was Hayworth's argument that the real culprits behind the economic crisis were Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and George Soros: "I'll tell you what was bad -- the sneak attack on our economy, the dress rehearsal that was the debacle of IndyBank, when Chuck Schumer helped get that started, and the guy in the background, George Soros, manipulating all the currency."

As Steve M. noted, "[Hayworth argued] that our current economic situation has nothing to do with eight years of George W. Bush and quite a bit to do with two 'sneaky' gentlemen who just so happen to be of the Jewish persuasion.... Yup, a Jewish senator and a Jewish 'currency manipulator' made all this happen."

Keep in mind, Hayworth's background on alleged anti-Semitism isn't new. Steve also notes that Hayworth wrote a book in 2006 praising Henry Ford's vision of "Americanization," an idea Ford formulated as a counterweight to his paranoia about Jewish world domination. Hayworth and his aides tried to respond to the ensuing controversy at a synagogue in Scottsdale, Arizona, but only made matters worse. When there was fresh criticism from offended synagogue members, a surrogate for the then-congressman said, "No wonder there are anti-Semites."

Note to "Hardball" producers: giving Hayworth a national platform to spew ugly nonsense is a very bad idea. This clown left Congress as something of a disgrace; he has nothing of value to add to the public discourse.

Steve Benen 8:50 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (29)

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George Soros, manipulating all the currency

Funny how neither last night's Frontline nor last week's "House of Cards" (CNBC) found George Soros (or Schumer) worth mentioning in their explanations of the Wall Street meltdown. In fact, neither mentioned short selling, either. Considering how much attention was paid to the short selling at the time, I find this odd.

Posted by: Danp on February 18, 2009 at 8:52 AM | PERMALINK

Cornyn of Texas is raising all kinds of cash to keep Franken out of the senate, hopefully Franken can get some funds too, it seems like the repubs are coing to ask for a special election, this from a person who is hand in hand with Stanford, one wonders how long we are going to let the crooks rule.

Posted by: JS on February 18, 2009 at 8:54 AM | PERMALINK

I seem to recall Ward Churchill, tenured radical, being elevated to the spokesmanship of 9/11 contraryism and dissent.
Hayworth was actually elected to the Congress by the good Republican people of his Arizona district. My only quibble with his appearance is that it should always include the id stamp of "former Rep. (R)-Arizona".

Posted by: Steve Paradis on February 18, 2009 at 8:56 AM | PERMALINK

sometimes my full-blown delight in the new obama era is deflated a little by the hate thugs and hate nuts who swirl around the media -- the limbaughs, the palins, the newtster, our ol'boy jd -- and i shudder at the thought of one word:

Weimar...

Posted by: neill on February 18, 2009 at 8:59 AM | PERMALINK

Yeah, well. Another reason to be grateful that the American people elected the skinny colored guy.

Posted by: MattF on February 18, 2009 at 9:00 AM | PERMALINK

Hayworth, Limbaugh, and the other loons are playing with fire with their anti-Soros conspiranoia. For right-wing morons, it's only a slender thread between Soros and "Jew bankers," and the Hayworth-bots might want to take a cold look at just who it is they're feeding with this chum.

Posted by: R. Porrofatto on February 18, 2009 at 9:04 AM | PERMALINK

yea, well, at least Hayworth made the trains run on time...

oops, wrong fella.

Posted by: slappy magoo on February 18, 2009 at 9:11 AM | PERMALINK

Are you better off than you were six months ago?

No, I didn't think so.

Posted by: Al on February 18, 2009 at 9:22 AM | PERMALINK

Obama was inaugurated in September, Al? I missed that.

Posted by: Steve M. on February 18, 2009 at 9:39 AM | PERMALINK

Note to "Hardball" producers: giving Hayworth a national platform to spew ugly nonsense is a very bad idea.

Oh, I'm not so sure about that. I'd love to see more Republicans on television saying sincerely they'd love to return to Bush's economic policies.

Posted by: doubtful on February 18, 2009 at 9:51 AM | PERMALINK

Read Jim D. Adkisson's letter that was released by the court last week. He's the right-wing terrorist who killed two people when he attacked the Unitarian Church in Tennesee.

Tell me he doesn't sound just like J.D. Hayworth and your everyday Rush dittohead:

http://web.knoxnews.com/pdf/021009church-manifesto.pdf

Posted by: The Other Ed on February 18, 2009 at 9:54 AM | PERMALINK

In one of Franken's books he tied Cornyn to Abramoff pretty convincingly. Maybe Cornyn's trying for a little payback. Oh and danp as usual your 100% full of shit. And I find that odd.

Posted by: Gandalf on February 18, 2009 at 10:03 AM | PERMALINK

I thought it was all the Jews fault too.

But then I realized that the REAL problem is caused by people who don't drink alcohol.

Neither George W. Bush or Hank Paulson drank a drop of alcohol over the last 8 years.

Then, when both of them get into power the economy tanks.

Coincidence??? I think not.

Posted by: neil wilson on February 18, 2009 at 10:08 AM | PERMALINK

And I find that odd. -Gandalf

What I find odd, and perhaps it's just me, is an off topic comment about Franken and Cornyn (they're not mentioned in the article or in any previous comment) that ends with an inexplicable and harsh personal attack.

Posted by: doubtful on February 18, 2009 at 10:10 AM | PERMALINK

...in any previous comment.... -doubtful

Except the one where they were. Facepalm.

My apologies.

Posted by: doubtful on February 18, 2009 at 10:26 AM | PERMALINK

Gandalf - I don't mind the harsh attack, but would a reason be so much to ask for? If short selling had as much to do with the melt down as was suggested in September by the MSM, why would these two documentaries completely ignore it? I mean they're correcting the public perception without ever mentioning that it was out there. CNBC is particular was on both sides of that fence.

Posted by: Danp on February 18, 2009 at 10:38 AM | PERMALINK

When Hayworth lost to grandfatherly Harry Mitchell, there was a great sigh of relief in the Spanish-speaking community.

And I would imgagine that his former friends in the sports entertainment biz, get their daily fix of chuckles from Hayworth's political antics, since no one now pays him a moment of thought. And yet, eventually, the more intelligent among have already practiced their behavior for ostracism when it comes to Hayworth. As such, it's well-deserved.

Jaango

Posted by: Jaango on February 18, 2009 at 10:42 AM | PERMALINK

Television news is all about entertainment, not reality. Having someone spew nonsense which gets people upset is good for the ratings.

Posted by: jen f on February 18, 2009 at 11:00 AM | PERMALINK

Hayworth may very well become Arizona's next governor. The European immigrant population of AZ loves politicians who hate Mexicans, and as their majority status diminishes they grasp their prejudices with greater conviction.

Posted by: Brojo on February 18, 2009 at 11:01 AM | PERMALINK

Ah, yes, the coordinated Soros/Schumer "stab in the back." Or "der doltschtoss" in the original german.

Still, it's exciting to see Republicans get their groove back. For awhile it was funny to see how rusty they were with their ethnic scapegoats--they were blaming the financial crisis on Fannie & Freddie, as if black people and liberals had caused the financial crisis! Everyone knows that Jews are responsible for financial shenanigans while black people and liberals are responsible for high taxes (federal welfare spending, of course) and street crime.

It's great to see that with the Hayworth's comments and with Republicans whining about the crippling debt that reckless democratic spending is bequeathing to our children, that Republicans are getting their ethnic scapegoats back in line. It was just so pathetic to watch them flail around.

Ah, we're really entering a golden era for the opposition party, eh?

Posted by: anonymiss on February 18, 2009 at 11:10 AM | PERMALINK

Are you better off than you were six months ago?

Ever noticed that the only people who seem to think that Obama has magical powers that can instantly fix all of our problems are Republicans?

Posted by: Mnemosyne on February 18, 2009 at 11:17 AM | PERMALINK

The path to Hayworth's use of an anti-Semitic trope here has been well-paved by Republicans in the past few years. The whole point of setting Soros up as a boogeyman was that he was Jewish and with an accent to boot (the fact that his family were refugees from a communist country didn't matter). And when the banking system fell apart last fall you heard plenty from Republican leaders (including McCain) about Chuck Schumer, Barney Frank, and Chris Dodd. Dodd seemed to me at the time window-dressing to stave off the prospect of being called out for doing what they were doing. And of course Frank is a two-fer as far as the haters are concerned.

However it bears noting that when tropes echoing the notion of a shadowy conspiracy working against the best interests of the United States are evoked on the left, there's plenty of denial.

Posted by: larry birnbaum on February 18, 2009 at 11:19 AM | PERMALINK

Agree these kooks should not be given air time on Hardball. Shame on MSNBC. Will they have Rush and Coulter next? Just because he was a senator, doesn't make it okay. It's widely known he's flagrantly anti-Semitic and an all around nut-case.

Posted by: should not be indulged by MSNBC on February 18, 2009 at 11:44 AM | PERMALINK

North Carolina State should have required all players to wear helmets during games.

However, sorry to see neither Matthews nor Harold Ford correct Hayworth's canard about the CBO saying the Stimulus Bill would not work. This RNC Talking Point has been widely discredited, but, JD let it rip, once more.

Posted by: berttheclock on February 18, 2009 at 11:55 AM | PERMALINK

Ever noticed that the only people who seem to think that Obama has magical powers that can instantly fix all of our problems are Republicans?

Sure, but this was a pretty funny parody that effectively mocked the right.

Posted by: shortstop on February 18, 2009 at 12:14 PM | PERMALINK

Note to "Hardball" producers: giving Hayworth a national platform to spew ugly nonsense is a very bad idea.
Not necessarily. It does let more people see how crazy R-politicos like Hayworth and Bachmann are.
But that advantage is lost if the hosts play along as if they were listening to rational dialog.

Posted by: Neil B ☼ on February 18, 2009 at 12:17 PM | PERMALINK

I don't see any anti-Semitism.

Posted by: Bob M on February 18, 2009 at 12:37 PM | PERMALINK

As usual, somebody else made the point I;d been planning to make, though they made it more articulately and concisely than I would have.
So: What Neil B said.

Posted by: smartalek on February 18, 2009 at 1:52 PM | PERMALINK

The former radio host and Abramoff pal initially said he'd like to see more of Bush's economic policies of the last eight years.

Isn't that what the Democrats are giving us? More borrow-and-spend? Obama ridiculed the notion the other day that spending wasn't stimulus--that you could separate the two--and Bush was certainly a great deficit spender. His eight years of stimulus was the right way to go, but we simply need much more stimulus under Obama. Eight years wasn't enough.

Posted by: Luther on February 18, 2009 at 5:20 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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