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Hitchens Blasts Tea Party: 'The Mad Ideas of Exploded Crackpots And Bigots'

Christopher HitchensIt is often in the excuses and in the apologies that one finds the real offense. Looking back on the domestic political “surge” which the populist right has been celebrating since last month, I found myself most dispirited by the manner in which the more sophisticated conservatives attempted to conjure the nasty bits away.

Here, for example, was Ross Douthat, the voice of moderate conservatism on the New York Times op-ed page. He was replying to a number of critics who had pointed out that Glenn Beck, in his rallies and broadcasts, had been channeling the forgotten voice of the John Birch Society, megaphone of Strangelovian paranoia from the 1950s and 1960s. His soothing message:


Pair of conservative groups raised $70 million in midterm campaign

Karl RoveA pair of conservative groups founded with the help of Republican political guru Karl Rove raised more than $70 million since their inception last spring, making them the undisputed leaders of an onslaught of outside spending during the 2010 midterm campaign, according to new disclosures Thursday.

American Crossroads, a "super PAC" that can raise and spend as much money as it wants, took in nearly $28 million in donations, weighted heavily with large contributions from financiers, oil tycoons and other wealthy individuals, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission.


Drug Lobby's Tax Filings Reveal Big Spending In Health Debate

Bill TauzinIt's official. The drug industry's chief lobbyists — the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America — raised and spent at least $101.2 million in 2009 on advocacy efforts during the contentious health care overhaul debate, according to tax documents the group filed last month.

Former PhRMA CEO Billy Tauzin tells Shots the lobby used the money — special contributions from member companies — for broadcast and print ads, grassroots and direct lobbying, polling and consulting. Tauzin, who has a two-year contract to advise PhRMA's new leader, recently opened his own DC-based lobbying shop with his son Tom.


In slideshow, Rep. Joe Barton declares war on the Obama administration

Joe BoltonIf the Obama administration was hoping to see hints of bipartisanship from the Hill, it might want to skip over the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The committee's ranking Republican, Rep. Joe L. Barton (Tex.), has a slide presentation that he's e-mailing to colleagues, pledging to do for the administration what Gen. George Patton and company did for Germany. The first slides are standard campaign material, with Barton asking to be elected by the new House Republican majority to be chairman of the committee.


How Sarah Palin flunks feminism

Sarah Palin fails feminismThe governor-turned-reality-TV-star’s new book dives into feminist history—distorting and misunderstanding it every step of the way. In some ways, it’s a good thing that Sarah Palin calls herself a feminist. It means that, even among conservatives, women’s equality has become a normative position, the starting point for debate.

It means that feminism has gone from something that the right wants to destroy to something it wants to appropriate. That’s progress, of a sort.


New poll undercuts GOP claims of a midterm mandate

New poll undercuts GOP claims of a midterm mandateA majority of Americans want the Congress to keep the new health care law or actually expand it, despite Republican claims that they have a mandate from the people to kill it, according to a new McClatchy-Marist poll.

The post-election survey showed that 51 percent of registered voters want to keep the law or change it to do more, while 44 percent want to change it to do less or repeal it altogether.


America's Super-Secret War Criminal

George Herbert Walker BushThe life of George Herbert Walker Bush represents one of the most corrupt and devious people to ever hold the office of the presidency hostage. He is not deserving of anything but an actual trial for his treasons against the United States and the millions of people that he was responsible for murdering during his various official positions in the government.

As Vice-President, GHW Bush was able to cash-in on what he had done (for himself) as CIA Director (1976-77) when he began his ventures into drugs and guns around the world. In 1990 Noriega was snatched from power by Bush, and over 4,000 Panamanians were secretly burned alive in the three day US military attack on Panama in order to silence Noriega; about GHW Bush's role in guns and drugs in this hemisphere.


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