10,000 on ignore, Book 199, Gethsemane, Part 2.....

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Opinion: I’m no Democrat — but I’m voting exclusively for Democrats to save our democracy

Max Boot

There appears to be a consensus in Washington that the success of the Biden presidency will hinge on the outcome of the massive infrastructure and social-spending bills now before Congress. That may be true, but their fate won’t affect how I vote.

I’m a single-issue voter. My issue is the fate of democracy in the United States. Simply put, I have no faith that we will remain a democracy if Republicans win power. Thus, although I’m not a Democrat, I will continue to vote exclusively for Democrats — as I have done in every election since 2016 — until the GOP ceases to pose an existential threat to our freedom......
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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The number of people quitting their jobs for better opportunities soars to record heights
Dartagnan

It appears that American workers are, at long last, weighing in on the asymmetric relationship between labor and capital in this country. Nearly 3% of the American work force quit their jobs in August, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Labor.

The rise in the number of Americans abandoning their jobs can be attributed to two factors: the continued spread of the delta variant of the COVID-19 virus in August and its impact on employers, and the increasing opportunities available to workers for better pay and working conditions in other jobs.
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As reported by Eli Rosenberg, writing for
The Washington Post:

The number of people quitting their jobs has surged to record highs, pushed by a combination of factors that include Americans sensing ample opportunity and better pay elsewhere.
Some 4.3 million people quit jobs in August, according to the monthly survey — about 2.9 percent of the workforce, according to new data released Tuesday from the Department of Labor. Those numbers are up from the previous records set in April and nearly matched in July, of about 4 million people quitting.

As Rosenberg reports, this unprecedented exodus is occurring in retail and service industries, health care, and traditionally low-paying fields, as well as “professional business services,” which, roughly translated, means lesser-paying secretarial, “managerial,” and clerical fields. More fulsomely interpreted, it includes significant numbers of folks whose low-paid labor previously allowed those in charge of such businesses to luxuriate in a secure and often bountiful wealth.

It appears that one small silver lining of the COVID-19 pandemic was the rare opportunity it provided for people to reflect on their current employers’ generosity … and weigh that generosity against their personal life situations. Now with businesses everywhere clamoring for employees—many boldly and loudly advertising their attractive hiring wages in the process—many American workers have adopted their own economic calculus, forsaking employers who continue to pay peasant wages for those who have sensibly concluded that their businesses’ future prospects demand they pay their workers better. As CNBC reports, many of those workers “have have left their jobs because of health concerns and child care issues unique to the pandemic’s circumstances.”

As reported by CBS News, The delta variant of the COVID-19 virus also appears to have influenced the departure of workers from those businesses where close customer contact is required, such as leisure and hospitality.

"The August JOLTS report shows employers and workers were anxious about the rising Delta COVID-19 wave two months ago," Robert Frick, corporate economist at the Navy Federal Credit Union said in a note. "Workers quit, especially in retail, at a record rate to avoid exposure to possible infection. Job openings dropped, especially in leisure and hospitality, as travel dropped markedly due to Delta," Frick said.

The Post’s Rosenberg quotes an economist at the Indeed job search hub, Nick Bunker, who emphasizes the newfound bargaining power of workers.

“This really elevated rate of people quitting their job is a sign that workers have lots of confidence and they have relatively stronger bargaining positions then they’ve had in the past,” Bunker said. “There’s lots of demand, and people are seizing that opportunity and quitting their job.

Well before unemployment benefits for workers—provided by Democrats in their COVID-19 relief legislation—began to expire, Republican governors had eagerly and with stunning unanimity adopted a cynical and vicious strategy designed to force these same employees back into their low-paying positions, by cutting off benefits to their own state’s workers. This was done in response to howls of dismay by their donor base of corporate CEOs and businessmen, who saw their profit margins narrowing or disappearing altogether as the nation endured lockdowns and social distancing measures to contain the pandemic’s spread. Unsurprisingly, most of these Republican governors also adopted anti-masking policies, which virtually guaranteed the continued spread of the virus and its variants in their own states.

The result of this perverse Republican strategy of collective punishment of workers is now becoming apparent. As Rosenberg points out, “Republican officials in many states sought to address the issue by curtailing federal unemployment benefits this summer, but those cuts seem to have done little to resolve the issue.” Rather than being herded back into their dismal jobs, many workers may have instead elected to seek out safer or better paying new opportunities offered by more generous employers. Meanwhile, it doesn’t appear to have dawned on these same Republican governors that their strategy was inherently self-defeating, and could lead to the very results we are seeing now. One thing seems fairly intuitive: This was probably not the result that those donors sought.

It is hardly surprising that workers have at long last chosen to quit their old jobs, rather than return to workplaces where their health and lives are at risk, particularly when new jobs beckon, with better pay and at least nominally safer conditions. Yet what’s particularly telling is the fact that higher pay alone is not always a solution for many companies. There are signs that the pandemic has caused many workers to reevaluate their jobs not only in terms of pay but also their quality of life. As Ian Thomas for CNBC reports, employers are finding out that further incentives, such as tuition reimbursement and other incentives, such as skills training, are needed to retain employees—another sign of workers’ newly increased leverage.

Just increasing pay alone won’t be enough for businesses to compete for workers in this challenging environment, according to a panel of senior HR executives who spoke during a CNBC Workforce Executive Council LinkedIn livestream that focused on recruiting, retaining and returning to the workplace.
“It’s a pretty dynamic time in the marketplace right now, and you’re seeing some pretty big trends and changes so you need to start with ensuring you are offering competitive wages,” said DJ Casto, executive vice president and chief human resources officer at Synchrony. “But you also have got to create the right kind of ecosystem to support your employees.”

Employers need to wrap around their heads the fact that there isn’t going to be any return to “business as usual” after this pandemic. Hitting American workers over the head with a stick and providing crumbs as incentives simply won’t cut it anymore. Those companies and leaders who recognize that fact are going to be the ones who succeed and thrive in this environment.

Those who don’t will suffer the consequences. That’s just the law of the jungle.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Trump Makes HYSTERICAL Claim of Voter Fraud that Actually Proves His 'Big Lie' is Bogus
News Corpse

trump-pennywise.jpg


Nearly a year after the 2020 presidential election, the twice-impeached, former reality TV game show host and fake billionaire, Donald Trump, is still running his mouth about election fraud. Never mind that in all that time - and after more than sixty failed court challenges - he and his cohorts in politics and the press have been unable to uncover even a shred of evidence to support his manic ranting that has incited deadly violence.

Even the GOP-run "fraudit" in Arizona concluded that Joe Biden was the legitimate winner. But that didn't stop Trump from proclaiming just the opposite. Just as he has done repeatedly before. Trump's Attorney General, Bill Barr, even admitted that "We realized from the beginning it was just bull—." Which triggered another Trump tantrum.

Well, all of that may have just come to an inglorious end with posts by Trump's spokes-shill, Liz Harrington (whose proxy Trump tweeting is violating Twitter's rules against circumventing a ban). Harrington's tweets linked to an article that she rapturously reported were proof of voter fraud (and not for the first time). But like everything else in Trump World, the reality was far less scandalous than the lies they gushed (Here's the tweet if you'd like to report it (and her) to Twitter).

There is a lot to unpack in this purposefully deceptive set of tweets. Let's begin with the fact that it only alleges to have found a total of 28 votes that it implies were irregular. That's out of nearly three million cast in a state where Biden won by more than 154,000. What's more, it doesn't reveal whether the allegedly fraudulent votes were for Biden or Trump. They could be proof that it was the Trump side that was cheating.

Even more notable is that it doesn't even prove that there was any fraudulent intent whatsoever. In every case it might easily be explained as naïve persons making minor mistakes that unknowingly violated the law. One case snared a grandmother who was trying to help out her grandson. The article described this super villain saying that...

"The investigation found that the grandmother of Clark returned his absentee ballot by mail despite him deciding to vote in person. Clark admitted to signing her grandson's absentee ballot because she was concerned he wouldn't have time to vote on Election Day."

Oh my! Lock her up! It is also notable that these trivial cases of impropriety were discovered and reported by the Michigan Attorney General and the Michigan Secretary of State, both of whom are Democrats. So any assertion of Democratic foul play is preposterous.

In fact, this report is proof that the system works. The cases outlined in the article were all found through the routine process of signature matching. This is precisely how the system was developed with safeguards to prevent or catch any irregularities. The state officials released this statement:

“These cases highlight the scrutiny applications and ballots undergo throughout the election process, as well as the thorough investigative process that ensues when instances of attempted fraud are suspected,” AG Dana Nessel said in a release. [...] Our election system is secure, and today’s charges demonstrate that in the rare circumstances when fraud occurs we catch it and hold the perpetrators accountable,” [Secretary of State] Jocelyn Benson added.

Clearly, there was no "fraud" that even came close to impacting the election outcome. And it surely does not require any of the extreme measures that Republicans are implementing to suppress voting, such as photo IDs, curtailing of voting hours and locations, eliminating mail-in ballots, or denying voters food and water as they wait for hours, mostly in Democratic districts by design of the GOP legislators.

Nevertheless, the Trump camp is using this utterly inconsequential story to buttress the "Big Lie" that the election was "rigged" and "stolen" from him. It fails on every level to do that. And this sort of deliberate deception has the great likelihood of leading to more violence. But that doesn't matter to the Trump cult who will believe whatever interpretation of reality that they are told to believe. The predictable peril that this represents to American democracy and civil society is the purpose of this charade. They won't be happy until they foment a full scale civil war.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Furious Jan. 6 whistleblower letter alleges Capitol Police leaders lied to Congress
Laura Clawson

Acting as a whistleblower, a former senior Capitol Police official alleges that Assistant Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman and acting Assistant Chief Sean Gallagher got a warning about a possible attack on Congress weeks ahead of Jan. 6, but didn’t share that information with other Capitol Police officials—something the former official says Pittman lied to Congress about. In a 16-page letter, the former official also slammed investigators for their failures, in particular the failure to pin enough blame on Pittman and Gallagher, who the letter describes as “simply watch[ing] mostly with their hands on their laps” as their subordinates fought to defend the Capitol

Pittman told Congress that a Dec. 21 intelligence report, which warned that people were sharing maps of the Capitol online and talking about armed confrontations with members of Congress, had been shared with assistant chiefs and deputy chiefs. But the writer of the 16-page letter says that claim is “unconditionally false.” Pittman and Gallagher were the “only officials that had all the intelligence information for the 6th.”
.......
Because of them, the letter alleges, the Capitol Police were not prepared for what happened on Jan. 6—for things they should have known were coming.

“The failures and inactions of these two prior to and on the 6th unquestionably contributed to the death of officers and the serious physical and emotional injury of hundreds of other members of law enforcement. It contributed to the death of citizens and caused harm to the reputation of the Congress, the USCP and other commanders,” the former official writes. “Yet, the truth of their performance is not in the command-and-control report and appears to be of little importance to the congressional community. It is obvious that the congressional community has purposefully failed to provide the truth to the members of the USCP that fought so valiantly to protect them on the 6th. This level of dishonesty must start at the top and taints every level of USCP oversight throughout this Congress.”

By contrast, the letter writer hails some “leadership heroes of the day,” who s/he says were on the scene and putting themselves at physical risk in defense of the Capitol. But the intelligence failures, and the failure of Congress and other investigators to pin those on Pittman and Gallagher, loom largest in the letter.

“Ultimately, the IIAD, that they supervised, produced approximately 50 pages of documents in a dozen plus reports reference the demonstrations on the 6th, These documents did NOT contain the critical information that was possessed and needed by the Department to operationalize a plan and procure the resources to stop this attack. In 50 pages, there was one paragraph tacked on page 15 of one document that vaguely spoke of the target of the demonstration being Congress this time. The remaining 99% of the 50 pages of documents, including those produced after the one assessment, repeated the chances of any police action were ‘unlikely or remote’.”

The Capitol Police rejected the accusation that its leaders could have predicted anything close to the scale of the violence on Jan. 6. “Based on all the intelligence the USCP received before January 6, we were aware of the potential for violence from some demonstrators,” a spokesman said in a statement. “Based on the intelligence, the Department enhanced its security posture. However, no one’s intelligence revealed the large-scale demonstration would become a large-scale attack.”

In a joint statement, members of the Capitol Police’s executive team, including Pittman and Gallagher, said that although “there is more work to do, many of the problems described in the letter have been addressed.”

“The United States Capitol Police has implemented, and continues to implement, many of the critical recommendations called for in a series of post January 6 reviews,” they said. “The letter from the former employee echoes the thoughtful recommendations in those reports.”

It’s unlikely the letter writer would ever agree that the problems described in the letter had been addressed as long as Pittman and Gallagher remain in senior positions, given the degree of sheer personal rage directed at the two throughout the letter. That rage raises question marks about the letter writer’s potential biases—are they entirely the product of Pittman and Gallagher’s failures around Jan. 6, or is there a history there?—but regardless, it’s been clear from the day of the insurrection there had been major intelligence failures that needed to be investigated. While the House select committee is correct to focus significant attention on Donald Trump and his inner circle for their role in inciting the attack, the intelligence failures within law enforcement also require significant attention.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Biden administration fires warning shot to conservative justices in brief to halt Texas abortion law
Charles Jay

The Biden administration has filed a new brief to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals urging the judges to suspend the new Texas law that effectively bans most abortions after six weeks.

Other states have tried to impose similar early bans on abortions, only to have them blocked by courts on constitutional grounds based on the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision.

The Texas law pushed by Gov. Greg Abbott tried to skirtRoe by offloading enforcement solely onto private citizens. They can collect at least $10,000 in damages and recover their legal costs if they successfully sue abortion providers or anyone who aids and abets a woman seeking to end a pregnancy after fetal cardiac activity is dected..

In its brief filed Monday night, the Justice Department sent a clear warning to conservative justices on the 5th Circuit and Supreme Court that there could be unintended consequences if they allow Texas’ abortion law to remain in effect.


According to The Associated Press, the DOJ brief argued:

“If Texas’s scheme is permissible, no constitutional right is safe from state-sanctioned sabotage of this kind,” the Justice Department told the appeals court.
In wording that seemed to be a message to the Supreme Court, the Justice Department raised the specter that if allowed to stand, the legal structure created in enacting the law could be used to circumvent even the Supreme Court’s rulings in 2008 and 2010 on gun rights and campaign financing.

Here is a Tweet with the full Justice Department brief:



The brief adds that “state sovereingty does not encompass the authority to defy the Federal Constitution.”

Last Friday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, one of the most conservative appellate courts in the country, temporarily reinstated Texas’ harsh abortion law. That came two days after U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman issued a sweeping order blocking the law at the request of the Justice Deparment.

The 5th Circuit granted Texas’ request for an administrative stay of Pitman’s order. It asked the Justice Department to respond by 5 p.m. local time on Tuesday to a request by Texas that Pitman’s order be frozen while its appeal is considered by the 5th Circuit.

It is not clear when the 5th Circuit court will issue a ruling on whether to extend its temporary order allowing the Texas law to stand. But whatever the ruling the case is likely to end up before the Supreme Court again.

In early September, the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 shadow docket decision, declined to block the Texas law and allowed it to go into effect. The high court did not rule on whether the law and its unorthodox vigilante enforcement method were constitutional.

The Supreme Court’s decision regarding a bill that most legal analysts considered unconstitutional was seen as a sign that the court’s conservative majority was ready to overturn Roe v. Wade. In early December, the high court is scheduled to hear a case on a Mississippi law that bans abortions after 15-weeks.

The see-sawing court rulings have caused untold hardships for Texas women seeking to exercise their constitutional right to have an abortion.

When the law known as Senate Bill 8 was in effect, Texas patients had to make long journeys to get abortions at clinics in neighboring states. During the 48-hours that Pitman’s order was in effect, some Texas clinics performed abortions for women more than six weeks into their pregnancies.

The AP reported that Planned Parenthood made its own filing to the 5th Circuit Monday night that included numerous stories of Texas women impacted by the law, including one patient who they said was only 12 years old.

“Oklahoma staff are working overtime to care for Texas patients denied abortions,” attorneys for Planned Parenthood told the court.

In addition many of the nation’s top medical organizationsfiled an amicus brief to the 5th Circuit to express their opposition to Texas’ abortion ban.



The Texas law bans a abortions after fetal cardiac activity is detected, usually around six weeks into a pregnancy. A woman might not even know she is pregnant at that point. The law did not make any exceptions for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest,

Pitman’s strongly worded 113-page ruling effectively rebutted the specious arguments put forth by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and other Republican officials in Texas that the Justice Department had no legal authority to sue the state and hold Texas officials for lawsuits filed by private citizens.

“From the moment S.B. 8 went into effect, women have been unlawfully prevented from exercising control over their own lives in ways that are protected by the Constitution,” Pitman wrote in his opinion.

"This Court will not sanction one more day of this offensive deprivation of such an important right."

And finally this undercover video which seems to be going viral on Twitter shows just how extreme Gov. Abbott is when it comes to women’s reproductive rights.

 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Womp Womp... previous guy's mouthpiece says USA "very sadly going to Hell"
annieli

“Not even possible to believe the lies, exaggerations, and outright fraud committed by very poorly rated Morning “News” Shows about the January 6th protest. They say whatever comes to their mind, like writing a fictional novel…

“The press has lost its way at a level that is not even believable. Books, likewise, are made up stories and should only be sold as fiction. These are terrible human beings that do this to our Country. The 2020 Election was a fraud rife with errors, irregularities, and scandal.

“The Radical Left knows it, the media knows it, and the Patriots of our Country know it, and now the U.S.A. is paying a big price—it is very sadly going to hell!”



FBg_24UWYAQcz_M
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

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Tucker Carlson normalizes QAnon ‘Deep State’ talk with a whitewashing Michael Flynn interview
David Neiwert

Interviewing Trump-adviser-turned-QAnon-cult-leader Michael Flynn on his daytime Fox Nation show on Monday, Tucker Carlson conducted a master class in Normalizing Far-Right Extremists for all of his right-wing cohorts. It had all the basic elements: claim normalcy for radical views and conspiracy theories, whitewash all evidence of the extremism, gaslight the audience by claiming real facts are falsehoods, and finally, elevate the extremist to heroic status for “daring to speak out.”

There was no mention of QAnon—the authoritarian pro-Trump cult for whom Flynn has become the chief public figurehead, and from which Flynn manages to milk a substantial income—nor of Flynn’s involvement with the “Stop the Steal” rally that preceded the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection (which a gaslighting Carlson insists wasn’t an insurrection anyway). No mention of his remarks (less than convincingly retracted) endorsing a military coup against President Biden. Just a lot of dubious fluffing of his previous record, and whitewashing his current activism—even as Flynn ranted at length about “the takeover of our system of government” by the “Deep State.”

This went on for some 69 minutes, the majority of which featured Flynn and Carlson trying to whip up fears about a war with China in the imminent future. But the centerpiece of the conversation was Flynn’s lengthy indulgence of a conspiracist explanation for just what “the Deep State” is about and how it is engaged in what Carlson called an attack “on democracy itself.”

“My case and my situation is really a microcosm of what is happening in the larger enterprise of the United States of America right now,” he told Carlson. “I mean, the takeover of our system of government by a few to rule the many, so to speak, they had to get rid of people like me because, as the national security adviser, I’m responsible for, you know, for everything, pretty much everything in terms of the security of our country, and then the principal adviser to the president of the United States.”

Most of the discussion remained within the bandwidth of a seemingly reasonable analysis of how entrenched bureaucracies can create governments within the government, which is hardly a novel observation—but simultaneously encouraged a conspiracist framework suggesting that a nefarious cabal controlled the intelligence agencies and “security state,” who then controlled everyone else.

“I think what you learn is that we have two separate governments,” Flynn told Carlson. “We have the one that actually gets elected and goes into office. And then you have a government inside of Washington, D.C., that operates under no rules, no authorities other than their own or whoever’s in charge of their operations.”

“It sounds like that government was still controlled by Barack Obama,” Carlson interjected.

“Yeah, and I would say that that, to a degree, is what we're operating with today,” replied Flynn. “So when people talk about the Deep State—and I have heard a lot of people talk about the Deep State this, the Deep State that—the Deep State, I don't really describe the Deep State as a group of politically—you know, of Nancy Pelosi, or Chuck Schumer, or some of the people that are elected. They become part of it, but they're not really the Deep State.

“The Deep State in this country are the bureaucrats, and particularly the organization that run the security apparatus.”

He went on to explain that “the security state of this country has grown probably by five times in the last 25 to 30 years. So in a 10-year period of time, and it really was—9/11 probably was the impetus behind some of this. But I think what happened was, over time, this security state complex really joined with this military-industrial complex that Eisenhower talked about.

“And the danger now that we face is we have—that security state complex, [which] are all of these intelligence community agencies and activities that we have, right, that we've heard so much about … and then who actually is in charge of them, and then what authorities or what things that they're able to do. I mean, you've lived this, via them monitoring your phone calls, right?”

Flynn was referring to Carlson’s dubious claim—based on his deliberate misunderstanding of how FISA courts and intelligence-monitoring operations work, and bolstered by a pack of outrageous lies—that the National Security Agency had placed him under surveillance.

The NSA responded tartly: “Tucker Carlson has never been an intelligence target of the Agency and the NSA has never had any plans to try to take his program off the air,” it said in a statement, adding: “NSA has a foreign intelligence mission. We target foreign powers to generate insights on foreign activities that could harm the United States. With limited exceptions (e.g. an emergency), NSA may not target a US citizen without a court order that explicitly authorizes the targeting.”

But then, Flynn has a long history and reputation, like Carlson, of being a font of disinformation. There is a reason he was fired by the Obama administration (which went unmentioned, even as he touted having worked for Obama) for, among other things, having such a “loose relationship with facts” that his subordinates at the Defense Intelligence Agency referred to his assertions as “Flynn facts.” He was in fact convicted of lying to the FBI in the course of its investigation into Russian links to the Trump campaign.

Flynn’s transformation into a QAnon guru originated with remarks that Flynn made to colleagues after Trump won election in November 2016, crediting the victory to the “army of digital soldiers” who supported the GOP nominee. As QAnon began generating its conspiracy theories in 2017, his phrase “digital soldiers” became a movement rallying cry, as well as an ominous indicator of the movement’s growing turn toward violent extremism and insurrection.

But the mutual embrace between QAnon and Flynn really began in earnest when Flynn started campaigning for his conviction to be overturned in early 2019. It also became a major source of income for him: His legal defense fund, launched in 2017, eventually morphed into a complex network of conspiracist companies and websites, and when Flynn fired his attorneys and replaced them conspiracy-mongering lawyer Sidney Powell—who later played a key role in the insurrection drama as Trump’s election lawyer, filing reams of dubious lawsuits claiming election fraud—he shortly embraced QAnon wholly.

Among other fundraising items Flynn offered were “WWG1WGA” T-shirts featuring his name, for sale at $32 apiece. But that was a pittance compared to the hundreds that supporters were asked to cough up in a pay-to-publish scheme first advertised on a website linked to Flynn through his Digital Soldiers brand.

“We have an army of digital soldiers: citizen journalists,” the digitalsoldiers.us site declared. It claimed that such people “from all over the world have stepped up to fill the void where real journalism once stood.”

“Soon,” the site promised, “you will be able to submit your story to the Digital Soldiers website, where in partnership with UncoverDC.com, it will be vetted, edited, and shared with our network of thousands of fellow Digital Soldiers.”

Flynn’s most notorious moment in the QAnon spotlight came when a video in which he and his family recited a QAnon-derived oath went viral. Flynn and his family claimed the video had been taken out of context and that the oath had an innocent origin, and filed a lawsuit against CNN for portraying the video accurately.

But since then, there’s been a steady patter of QAnon conspiracism from Flynn and his defenders. At a “conservative” conference in Washington featuring prominent QAnon supporters and other pro-Trump figures, including Powell, Flynn helped lead a mask-burning ceremony as part of the movement’s embrace of opposition to COVID-19-related health measures. Other speakers included actor Jim Caviezel, who regaled the crowd with theories about how the children who have been abducted by the Deep State have their blood harvested—in a deliberately excited state—so that the adrenochrome in it can be extracted and consumed by nefarious liberal figures to extend their lifespans.

Flynn recently suggested that “they” want to get people to consume the COVID-19 vaccine by surreptitiously putting it inside salad dressing: “Somebody sent me a thing this morning where they’re talking about putting the vaccine in salad dressing,” said Flynn. “Have you seen this? I mean it’s—and I’m thinking to myself, this is the Bizarro World, right? This is definitely the Bizarro World ... these people are seriously thinking about how to impose their will on us in our society, and it has to stop.”

But in fact, as conspiracy-theory researcher Mike Rothschild pointed out, the piece that Flynn referenced was “actually about a pilot study looking at growing produce that could contain the material of an mRNA vaccine and not require deep freeze storage.”

Flynn also recently experienced how quickly his own volatile following within the QAnon world can turn on its own when video of a prayer he gave aloud at a Nebraska church began circulating with a headline reading: “Some Have Said That General Flynn Prayed to Satan in a Recent Prayer.” (Flynn’s prayer included the phrases “sevenfold rays” and “legions,” which some conspiracists thought had a Satanic ring to them.)

Rick Wiles, the notoriously antisemitic Florida pastor, urged his followers: “My advice to you is to separate from Gen. Michael Flynn. … I don’t care about politics, I care about your soul.” Flynn urged his own followers to ignore them: “People need to stop overthinking what everybody is saying.”

But Flynn’s most disturbing moment of the past year came at another QAnon gathering in Dallas, during which an audience member who identified himself as a Marine asked Flynn: "I want to know why what happened in Minamar (sic)can't happen here?"

Flynn responded: "No reason, I mean, it should happen here. No reason. That's right."

A day later, Flynn posted a message to Parler claiming that his words had been twisted. But even pro-Trump lawyer Jonathan Turley—a former defender of Flynn’s—wasn’t biting, noting that Flynn appeared to blame the media for "manipulating" his words at a "lively conference." “That is not true,” Turley wrote. “I watched the video and he matter-of-factly endorses the idea of a coup.”

The remark sparked wide outrage among serving military members and some members of Congress, who urged the Pentagon to consider prosecuting Flynn under military law for remarks that probably would have landed a serving member of the military in the brig. However, the Pentagon made clear it had no interest in pursuing such a case, given the unlikelihood it would prevail.

But there was also little question that Flynn’s response reflected a popular point of view within the QAnon movement, where hope springs eternal that Donald Trump will be miraculously reinstated as president.

“They are still 100 percent in support of Biden being removed and Trump returning to office, whether it’s a coup [or] whether it’s some reinstatement which doesn’t exist,” Rothschild, author of The Storm Is Upon Us: How QAnon Became a Movement, Cult, and Conspiracy Theory of Everything, told Recode. “The prophecy of QAnon is now that Trump will be restored to office, and whether that’s through violence or through magic, that’s just what they want to happen.”

None of this was even hinted at during Carlson’s hour-plus-long interview with Flynn. The “Deep State” discussion was limited to talk about Eisenhower’s “military-industrial complex” concerns and the range of powers of security agencies like the CIA, which have been discussed publicly since the 1970s.

In other words, there is no hint that Flynn’s paranoia about the “Deep State” reflect the central themes of QAnon conspiracy theories (as well as those promoted by Alex Jones’ Infowars operation)—namely, that not only does this secret cabal of “globalists” secretly control governments around the world, but it is actively engaged in the abduction and trafficking of children in a massive worldwide ring operated by leading liberal figures such as Obama and Hillary Clinton, with the purpose not only of using them as sex slaves but also eventually draining them of their blood.

Carlson has already established Fox News as a reliable dispensary of white-nationalist propaganda. It’s only natural that it begin tapping into the lucrative QAnon market: After all, dispensing disinformation with the purpose of dividing the nation in two has become its entire revenue-generation model. And it seems to be working.

 

McCloudersportLion

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So you sport #GFC crew lives matter 2
But ya hesitant to schmack Jinjis Hitler wit Reptar Flu
Ya didnt have a poaster get rested wit blonde Hay Zeus, nu
But ya didnt like the taste of BatBomb Flu