America: Imagine the World Without Her is the newest propaganda hit piece from confessed criminal and Right-wing operative Dinesh D'Souza.

During my weekly visit to the movies, I saw Deliver Us From Evil. It was a movie with great potential (the connection to PTSD and the "demons" that our veterans carry home with them from war could have been more thoroughly developed) that needed a thorough rewrite and editing. I am a sucker for movies about the supernatural and occult. Therefore, I felt obligated to see Deliver Us From Evil.

Dinesh D'Souza's new "documentary" "America" was also playing at the same movie theater (I had already suffered through a viewing of that Right-wing tract). Thus, I decided to do some reconnaissance/observational research on the attendees of D'Souza's newest fairy tale propaganda hit piece.

The actual members of the Right-wing public who are high on the political meth of the Fox News echo chamber are more fascinating to me than the media which is used to create and propagandize them.

While listening to the impromptu debriefing and cult meeting in the lobby that followed a viewing of America: Imagine the World Without Her, I realized that 1) Deliver Us From Evil is far less frightening than D'Souza's newest creation and 2) "America's" view of empirical reality and history is also supernatural, existing outside of the realm of normal logic and reality.

Talking in the abstract about the dangerous and noxious civic culture which has been created by the Right-wing media is one thing; actually listening to and observing this public in person is an altogether different experience. There is nothing harmless about the impact of the Right-wing propaganda machine on the thinking and reasoning processes of conservatives in the Age of Obama.

As I learned earlier this week, their warped logic and skewed perception of social and political reality is extremely dangerous and can/will lead to more incidents of Right-wing domestic violence, because how else would a reasonable person deal with a government that is led by "traitors" and under the control of Satan?

What did I observe while listening to the people who went to see America: Imagine the World Without Her?

1. The small group of people who attended America: Imagine the World Without Her here in Chicago skewed older (50s to 70s). It was, surprisingly, a racially integrated group with several black and brown folks mixing in comfortably with the white viewers.

2. "America" seemed like a reverential and defiant experience for the viewers. Interpreting their chatter, it seemed that they were excited to stick it to Obama by seeing America: Imagine the World Without Her in his home town. The Right-wing troglodytes were also worked up about the fact that their--and America: Imagine the World Without Her's real nemesis--Saul Alinsky, is also a Chicago native.

3. An African-American man, a black conservative, led the sermon/cult meeting in the lobby of the movie theater. Playing the standard role of black conservative in contemporary movement conservatism, his presence gave permission to the other members of the group to talk freely about Barack Obama without the fear of being labeled as "racists".

4.  America: Imagine the World Without Her is a cinematic conduit for standard Right-wing talking points. The power of "America" is rooted in the shared group experience that comes with going to the cinema. The Right-wing echo chamber is a fantastical and bizarre world where the paranoid style and conspiranoid thinking is the norm. This effect is amplified by the face-to-face communal experience of attending the same propaganda film. The insider and special knowledge given to them by "America" can then be disseminated by the "elect" to the "non-believers".

The idea that D'Souza's movie has special knowledge--that the viewer is now obligated to share in order to counter "liberal lies" and "bias"--was repeated by several of the people leaving the theater.

5. America: Imagine the World Without Her should be taught in public schools as a corrective to the "indoctrination" of the state and liberal teachers. One viewer enthusiastically suggested to another member of the tribe that "kids" should be given a choice between America: Imagine the World Without Her and their standard history textbook--the latter is supposedly full of lies that will be exposed by D'Souza's "truths".

6. The black conservative suggested to his congregation that Obama is the devil and a tool of Satan. I was unsure how those two figures are related to one another in his cognitive schema. He also said that the movie was powerful for showing in clear terms how Saul Alinsky--a "communist America hating traitor"--met with Hillary Clinton at some point decades ago and has been orchestrating the destruction of America from behind the scenes.

In playing his role as black gatekeeper who grants permission to his fellow conservatives to be racists, the black conservative cult leader used the rhetorical strategy of "code switching" where he adopted "black" affected speech to talk about how he works "in the 'hood" and that black Americans--unlike him--are brainwashed and controlled by Obama and the Democratic Party.

Of course, the obligatory talking point, that the Democratic Party is the party of Jim and Jane Crow was referenced as part of his performance.

7. I also learned that Margaret Sanger was in cahoots with Charles Darwin's brother, and that they were all eugenicists who pioneered abortion in America as a "racist" tool for "liberals" to kill black babies.

8. America was apparently a "Christian Nation" at the Founding and the United States has been ruined by godless liberals led by Barack Obama. The United States will apparently be destroyed unless the Bible and "Biblical values" are renewed and made the center of public and private life.

9. There were white indentured servants in the American colonies. This is an important part of "America's" narrative as that fact somehow makes chattel slavery a less unique and less vicious social institution as practiced for centuries in the United States.

10. What did the lone white conservative do during the cult meeting/debriefing conducted by the black conservative in the lobby? He was quiet. He nodded enthusiastically when the black conservative would speak. The lone white conservative also smiled and seemed very pleased when his black conservative pet said that "black people have been tricked and brainwashed" by Obama and the Democratic Party.

America: Imagine the World Without Her's oeuvre is not new. It is a cinematic version of the Right-wing talking points and lies that are circulated on a daily basis throughout the Fox News echo chamber.

Epistemic closure is a real phenomenon. America: Imagine the World Without Her is a helpful reminder of how the use of technical and social scientific language often masks the real human experiences that underlie and are spoken to by theory and research.

To point. The audience members who I observed after their viewing of "America" were enjoying the sense of community that comes with encountering like-minded people...a feeling that is amplified if you have been told that you are somehow "oppressed" or "marginalized" by "the system", "liberals", "big government", "atheists", etc..

America: Imagine the World Without Her's lies and disinformation are poisons to our civic culture. However, I was most disturbed by seeing living and breathing examples of the people who have been brainwashed by the Right-wing media. Interacting with online trolls is tedious. Seeing online trolls made real, in person, alive, and not as ephemeral digital representations, is a reminder of how serious these political matters actually are.

Contemporary movement conservatism is a cult and religion. Its believers are immune to normal appeals to logic and fact. America: Imagine the World Without Her is a crystallization of Right-wing fantasies and distortions presented through the cinematic imagination. It is an artifact of the Tea Party GOP's madness. Consequently, the movie's real social value is how it serves as an insight into the paranoid style and conspiranoid fantasies that have possessed the Right-wing's foot soldiers and public--and which are a threat to all Americans' safety, security, and prosperity.

The slide towards American theocracy was nudged one more step forward by today's Supreme Court decision in support of the "freedom" of corporations with "religious" beliefs to restrict the rights of their employees. In essence, religious "beliefs" trump the obligations, rights, and responsibilities that come with being members of the polity and a broader political community.

The NY Times details the logic of the theocrats as:

The 5-to-4 decision, which applied to two companies owned by Christian families, opened the door to challenges from other corporations to many laws that may be said to violate their religious liberty.

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., writing for the court’s five more conservative justices, said a federal religious-freedom law applied to for-profit corporations controlled by religious families. He added that the requirement that the companies provide contraception coverage imposed a substantial burden on the companies’ religious liberty. He said the government could provide the coverage in other ways.

The dissent offers up this chilling observation:

On that point, Justice Ginsburg, joined by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, said the court’s decision “is bound to have untoward effects” in other settings.

“The court’s expansive notion of corporate personhood,” Justice Ginsburg wrote, “invites for-profit entities to seek religion-based exemptions from regulations they deem offensive to their faiths.”

The corporateocracy and the 1 percent are using the tricks, smoke, and mirrors of "religious faith" to expand their power and protections from civil authority and the social compact.

The tactic is Orwellian and dystopian.

Alas, if corporations are indeed "people"--an insult to the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution which was put in place to protect the rights of newly freed black slaves--then their behavior is sociopathic. The sociopath will lie, dissemble, and exploit others for his or her own gain because that is their essential nature.

There are many complications that will arise from the Supreme Court's "Hobby Lobby" decision.

The language of "religious liberty" and "free enterprise" are deified in American political culture and discourse. Those words are blinding and disorienting; therefore, they are also concepts that are not critically interrogated.

For example, "religious liberty" and "free enterprise" were used to justify slavery, as well as Jim and Jane Crow. The move towards privatized schools, "urban academies", and publicly funded religiously based secondary and primary education are the direct heirs of the "freedom academies" that whites used as a means to resist integration and the Black Freedom Struggle in the South and elsewhere.

[I wonder how many African-Americans and others who support school privatization are aware of that ugly history and the intersection between neoliberalism and white supremacy in the present?]

In practice, the language of religious liberty and free enterprise are in many ways antithetical to a true and expansive view of freedom, liberty, and civil rights.

The Roberts and Scalia court is operating under an assumption that Christianity is the United States' semi-official religion and that it should be legislated and protected in a way that other faiths are not. This is, of course, a misreading of the Constitution--despite what the deranged members of the Fox News Christian Evangelical Dominionist American public would like to believe.

Unintended consequences may lay bare the hypocrisy of the Right-wing and its agents on the Supreme Court.

How would conservatives and their agents respond if a company with Islamic beliefs (however defined) decided to impose its religious values on white, Christian, American employees?

Sharia hysteria would spread in such a way as to make the present day-to-day Islamophobia of the Right-wing echo chamber appear benign and muted by comparison.

What if a Black cultural nationalist organization such as the Nation of Islam or the Black Israelites claimed that they possessed a "religious freedom" to actively discriminate against white people in the workplace or elsewhere?

The White Right would explode with claims of "reverse discrimination" and "black racism".

The end game of the Supreme Courts' surrender to the theocrats and religious plutocrats could be the complete dismantlement of the liberal consensus politics of the post World War 2 era.

Consider the following questions.

Is there a "religious freedom" to practice housing discrimination if you are a member of a white supremacist "Christian" organization that leases or sells property? Does "religious freedom" for corporate entities trump anti-discrimination laws governing gender, sexuality, disability status, or race?

The beautiful thing about religious faith is its malleability and vagueness. "Faith" is a belief which cannot be proven by ordinary or empirical means: this trait makes religion dangerous and disruptive to a functioning democratic-liberal polity.

Religion can be anything to anyone.

The Framers understood this fact. Thus, their shrewd choice to separate church and state in the Constitution.

Movement conservatism is no longer a centrist force, one interested in stability or "tradition". Its members are radicals who want to fundamentally destroy and transform the standing bargains and norms which have guided American society and politics for decades.

Unfortunately, the Supreme Court, what was once the United States' most respected political institution, is soiling itself by surrendering to the American Right's radical agenda.

The role of armed resistance and guns in the Black Freedom Struggle is one of America's hidden histories. The mainline Civil Rights Movement was publicly non-violent: this was essential for Dr. King's strategy of public shaming and provocation. It is also important to note how the Black Freedom Struggle's demands were/are remarkably centrist while simultaneously being radical in opposition to American Apartheid.

If it was widely known by the white American public that the Black Freedom Struggle included a component of armed self-defense (which included the Deacons for Defense, Rob Williams, other groups and individuals, and how even Dr. King's home contained firearms for his own protection) the moral certainty and superiority of the movement over the defenders of Jim and Jane Crow would have been jeopardized.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to discuss that hidden American history during a great conversation with Professor Mark Grimsley on the podcast series for my site We Are Respectable Negroes (WARN).

Over the last few weeks, the left and right-wing media have discovered the role played by armed resistance in the Civil Rights Movement (and longer Black Freedom Struggle) with the release of Charles Cobb Jr.'s new book This Nonviolent Stuff'll Get You Killed: How Guns Made the Civil Rights Movement Possible.

Media as varied as NPRThe RootAlternet, as well as Right-wing propaganda operations such as Hot Air and Breitbart, have reacted with a mix of surprise, fascination, and joy to Cobb's observation that:

I'm very much concerned with how the history of the southern freedom movement or civil rights movement is portrayed. And, I'm very conscious of the gaps in the history, and one important gap in the history, in the portrayal of the movement, is the role of guns in the movement. I worked in the South, I lived with families in the South. There was never a family I stayed with that didn't have a gun. I know from personal experience and the experiences of others, that guns kept people alive, kept communities safe and all you have to do to understand this is simply think of black people as human beings and they're gonna respond to terrorism the way anybody else would.
The novelty of Cobb's claims about black armed resistance are compelling because they stand against a white washed, childish, and flat version of the Civil Rights Movement, a narrative which robs it of complexity and ignores the radical politics that were the movement's beating heart.

In reality, as part of the long Black Freedom Struggle with origins dating back to the 17th century, the war against Jim and Jane Crow was an insurgency that involved many different actors, agendas, and theaters of struggle. Americans like simple stories; the effort to fold the Black Freedom Struggle into liberal consensus politics necessitates that some of its aspects are emphasized while others are left as footnotes and books known mostly by historians and archivists.

The Right-wing media's interest in Charles Cobb Jr.'s book This Nonviolent Stuff'll Get You Killed reflects a broader political agenda that fetishizes guns and is determined to sacrifice America's children on the altar of the gun gods. However, because contemporary conservatism is mated with white supremacy, such a relationship and idealization of "negroes with guns" does not neatly cohere.

The Gun Right's effort to stop any effort at reasonable gun control--or to treat gun violence as a preventable public health problem--finds cover behind the nobility of the Civil Rights Movement. If lions and American icons such as Brother King, the Freedom Riders, and other resisters can be somehow linked to the gun, then to criticize "gun rights" is "racist", and by extension a crime against human "liberty" and "freedom" as couched in the struggle against Jim and Jane Crow.

The facts are not kind to the Gun Right's insincere efforts to piggy back off of the Black Freedom Struggle. Movement conservatism has embraced the Neo-Confederacy and its language, ideology, and symbolism of Jim and Jane Crow. The white racists in the South are now solidly Republican.

Movement conservatism's racist bonafides in the post civil rights era and the Age of Obama are many (see: Birtherism; voter suppression; the Southern Strategy; the embrace of the Confederate Flag; the language of "Secession" and "nullification"; overt white racial appeals and "dog whistle politics"; etc.).

In all, the White Right and the Tea Party GOP of today are more likely to have used guns against African-Americans (and others) who were fighting for their rights in the Civil Rights movement than to have been marching with them.

For example, research on racial attitudes, gun ownership, and concealed carry laws has revealed a clear relationship between symbolic racism and racial animus by whites towards African-Americans. Here, white gun owners and supporters of concealed carry laws are more likely to be racist towards black people.

As a complement to the above findings, it is important to highlight how stand your ground laws are both racist in their application and enforcement, and are part of a long tradition of de jure and de facto rules and practices which empowered and enabled whites in the South and elsewhere to use guns as a means of controlling, terrorizing, and murdering people of color in order to maintain a white supremacist racial order.

Movement conservatives and the Gun Right like the idea of black freedom fighters with guns in the abstract. They do not like "negroes with guns" as neighbors. Nor, does the White Right embrace the principles and goals of the Black Freedom Struggle that armed resistance during the Civil Rights Movement helped to sustain and protect.

The knot of hypocrisy, racism, and conservatism is not easily untied.

Consider the following.

If two black men in the "New Black Panther Party" were a source of white rage and terror on Fox News and throughout the Right-wing media echo chamber, imagine the panic and "threat to national security" hysteria that would be ginned up if Cliven Bundy and his goon squad of "freedom fighters" were African-American.

The Gun Right's sick and twisted fantasies of white masculinity often involve using guns to stop "black" criminals and to suppress "urban uprisings".

As such, the online sewers of the White/Gun Right have produced such gun porn as the widely read "How America's Cities May Explode in Violence" in which "brave" white men with firearms protect suburban domesticity from blood thirsty rioting crowds of blacks and Latinos who are running amok because their food stamps and welfare monies have been suspended.

One does not have to think very hard about how the narrative surrounding the Trayvon Martin case would have been inverted by the White Right and the Right-wing echo chamber if Martin was armed and stood his ground against George Zimmerman, a man who hunted down and killed him for the "crime" of walking while black in a white neighborhood.

The Gun Right is part of a network of relationships that comprise movement conservatism in the post civil rights era. This alliance is tied together by hostility and racism towards people of color. A thinking and critical person should be immediately suspicious of any efforts by the White Right to claim ownership over, or to praise, any aspect of the Black Freedom Struggle. Why? The freedom and full equality of African-Americans is antithetical to the deep investment in white supremacy and white privilege which sustains and gives life to movement conservatism and the Tea Party GOP in the Age of Obama.

 

Once again, the Right-wing in America shows us who they really are. We should not be surprised.

On Monday, the "serious" thinkers at the Heritage Foundation hosted a panel on the faux Benghazi scandal. A Muslim-American woman named Saba Ahmed dared to ask a question about the panel's stereotypical assumptions regarding people of her faith. They harangued and bullied her. The Benghazi fetishists in the audience clapped with approval.

American movement conservatism is racist and xenophobic. In a healthy political society, the treatment which Ahmed received at the Heritage Foundation would be an outlier. It is not. Bigotry and racism are the trademarks and brand name of the Republican Party in the Age of Obama. To deviate from those values would cost the Republican Party the support of its voters.

The ugliness of the Tea Party GOP and its media is now expected by the America people. Thus, there is no consequence or substantial punishment for their bad behavior. Moreover, because of the extreme political polarization that the Right-wing media has helped to nurture, create, and expand, there is a whole public which embraces such bad behavior as proof of ideological purity and virtue. Compromise and civility are markers of weakness for the authoritarian bullies on the Right. Normal politics is imperiled because the basic principles that make it possible are no longer mutually shared across the divides of party and ideology in the United States.

Saba Ahmed's treatment at the Heritage Foundation has been much-discussed. However, the more interesting, and I would suggest even more important aspect of Monday's events, is the role played by panelist Brigitte Gabriel.

People buy the sizzle not the steak. Pointing out the ugly Islamophobia of the American Right-wing as exemplified by the Heritage Foundation's panel on Benghazi is easy and satisfying.

The more useful task is to detail who the players and participants are in a episode of political theater. Because politics is professional wrestling, every member of the show has a role to play.

The role can be explicitly detailed and told to the participants on a panel, news show, rally, or like event. The participants' performance can also be a direct reflection of their temperament, track record, and style.

The most "entertaining" moments in political theater are likely a function of both those variables.

Brigitte Gabriel, born Nour Saman, is a professional bigot and bomb thrower. Brigitte Gabriel's own (and some say discredited) personal life story as a Lebanese Christian whose family was threatened by "Islamic militias", gives credence and legitimacy to her Islamaphobia and hatred.

Brigitte Gabriel is proof of my observation that like black conservatives, women who hate feminism, and gays and lesbians who hate themselves, one of the easiest and fastest ways to become rich in America is to be a member of a marginalized group and to publicly criticize and disparage said group for the benefit of the Right. Professional excuse-making for the bigotry of movement conservatism is great work if you can get it.

Brigitte Gabriel's guiding principles in that role are summarized by her quote that she speaks up for, "what many in America are thinking but afraid to say out loud, for fear of being labeled a racist, bigot, Islamophobic, or intolerant."

Brigitte Gabriel is the character she embodied on the Heritage Foundation panel.

It is rumored that mafia hit man and serial killer"The Iceman" Richard Kuklinski was initially hired to be a leg breaker and debt collector. However, Kuklinski so enjoyed violence and hurting people that he was not able to moderate and control his behavior. Killing was joy for him.

The Right-wing propaganda machine deploys the likes of Brigitte Gabriel as the tip of the spear for their racism and bigotry in post civil rights America. The verisimilitude of her anti-Muslim bigotry is real because she is being herself "with the volume turned up".

[Saba Ahmed's role in the theater that was the Heritage Foundation panel, and Republican politics more generally, is very curious as well.]

"Public opinion" is not natural. It is shaped, massaged, and manufactured by elites and other actors. If the American people want to understand why the public discourse has become so ugly and coarse, and the political system so broken, they will need to ask basic questions about the players and stars in the show. Suspension of disbelief by the audience is the foundation, the buy-in, for a good and entertaining movie, play, TV show, or book. When pushed to the extreme, such a habit is a disservice to the common good and a healthy political culture and society.

The masses are asses. They were not necessarily born that way, someone had to teach them to behave in such a manner.

Earlier this week, I outlined how the Right-wing media will use Goebbels' principles to lie about and obfuscate the basic facts regarding the Las Vegas white supremacist shooters. Right-wing media "watchdog" and "advocacy" group Accuracy in Media took the bone dangled in front of them: apparently, Jerad and Amanda Miller are actually "Left-wing" "liberals" because they support the legalization of marijuana, and any effort to connect them to movement conservatism is a ploy and trick by the "liberal media." Cliff Kincaid offers up the following Right-wing comedy-propaganda:

John Avlon’s dishonest column on the cop-killers in Las Vegas should be studied by journalism students as an example of how to exploit a tragedy for political purposes. It is a shame he gets on CNN as an “analyst,” which gives him undeserved authority and prestige, when he deliberately confuses and misleads people. In this case, he tried to blame conservatives for the murders of two policemen. His Daily Beast column carried two titles, one of them being, “The Bonnie and Clyde of Ultra-Right Hate.” He said Jerad and Amanda Miller killed two metro cops while shouting, “This is a revolution!,” and then they “flung the Tea Party’s favorite coiled snake Gadsden flag and a swastika on the still-warm corpses and then moved to a nearby Walmart to murder a shopper before turning the guns on themselves.”
The reference to the Gadsden flag being “the Tea Party’s favorite” was an obvious effort to link the Tea Party to the murders. The flag dates back to the American Revolution and is used by various groups and people to protest Big Government. Miller’s notion of “Big Government” was a government that interfered with his marijuana smoking. A simple search of stories about his background revealed a series of confrontations with law enforcement over his drug habits.
Avlon wrote that Miller’s Facebook pages “detail a descent into a murderous rage, railing against a tyrannical government and parroting talking points from fright-wing radio hosts such as Alex Jones and militia movement groups such as the Three Percenters while ‘liking’ the pages of conservative activist groups ranging from the Heritage Foundation to Freedom Works and the NRA. Miller’s profile picture was a skull wearing an American flag bandana against a backdrop of crossed knives over the word ‘Patriot.’”

To lie so consistently and so brazenly takes a remarkable amount of discipline. I commend Cliff Kincaid for his efforts. Once again, groups such as Accuracy in Media demonstrate that the Right-wing echo chamber is akin to a trough urinal where a bunch of men with small penises are complementing each other on their "huge" lingams while mixing the streams of their pee together.

The Right-wing media is following a script designed to satisfy and make comfortable its authoritarian viewers. As such, the Right-wing echo chamber attracts ignorant people whose ignorance is in turn amplified and reinforced by the "news" sources they watch, read, and listen to. Goebbels is smiling. He wrote the playbook. It is hiding in plain sight for anyone who chooses to read it.

What shall we do with the white people...again?

I ask that question when white men commit mass shootings. I ask that question when Right-wing domestic terrorists kill innocent people. It is unfortunate, that in the aftermath of Sunday morning's murder spree by two white supremacists in Las Vegas, I am forced, once more, to ask said question.

Mass shootings by white men, as well as Right-wing domestic terrorism, have become events akin to those in the classic comedy Groundhog Day.

Unfortunately, there is nothing humorous of funny about how white Right-wing domestic terrorists have shot up Jewish community centers, planted bombs, seen a spike in their numbers since the election of Barack Obama, are coddled and encouraged by the Fox News echo chamber and the Republican Party, and now--with Tea Party regalia, Nazi bonafides, yelling "this is a revolution!"--they kill three people during a brazen daylight attack on Sunday in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Las Vegas shooters were so contemptible that even the racist welfare king Cliven Bundy, and his band of anti-Obama brigands, apparently felt that they were too "radical" for their low tastes.

The Right-wing echo chamber helped to spawn the mass shooters named "Jared" and "Amanda".

Birtherism, an embrace of the neo-confederacy, a worshipful attitude towards the Confederate flag (i.e. "the American Swastika") and the CSA, along with an open embrace of anti-black affect and white racial resentment in a concerted effort to delegitimate the United States' first black president, are the "polite" face of American white supremacy in the first decades of the 21st century.

The Republican Party is a white identity organization.

Complementing this claim, social scientists have highlighted how the Tea Party, a herrenvolk organization motivated by white racism under the guise of "taking our country back"--which begs the question "from who?"--creates a sense of white racialized self-interest among its members. Moreover, Tea Party organizations are a way for "old school" white supremacists to recruit new members from the angry white men (and women) who constitute the more extreme elements in the Republican Party.

The Las Vegas murder spree is a clear act of domestic terrorism by members of the White Right.

Of course, the Right-wing media and its acolytes will find a way to spin and distort the facts.

"Jared" and "Amanda" placed the Gadsden flag, what is now a Tea Party icon, on the body of one of their victims; the shooters yelled "this is a revolution!" while committing murder, a seditious slogan that echoes within the Right-wing echo chamber; Nazi paraphernalia was found in their home; and the Las Vegas shooters sought out a natural alliance with Cliven Bundy and his thugs.

The Right-wing media machine will re-frame the Las Vegas shooting spree in keeping with the principles outlined by Joseph Goebbels and his genius insights about how to manipulate the mass public.

The Fox News echo chamber will chose to either:

1) ignore the events in Las Vegas;
2) highlight those tragic events as an example for why concealed carry gun laws should be the rule of the land;
3) offer the default answer: this is all somehow Barack Obama's fault;
4) advance a lazy, intellectually bankrupt, and morally empty deflection: black people in Chicago shoot each other all the time!;
5) argue that these people are "sick" and "crazy", so why are we even talking about their politics?;
6) lie and commit an intellectually rapacious and craven assault on the historical record by suggesting that white supremacist Nazis are in fact really "liberals".

The most fringe elements of the Right-wing media machine and its base will default to a standard script wherein the white supremacist Las Vegas murder spree is presented as a "false flag operation", one conducted by "liberals" to discredit conservatives with the goal of undermining "gun rights".

When Richard Hofstadter's timeless and brilliant work on "the paranoid style" in American politics is mated with Right-wing bigotry and "conspiranoid" delusions, no ready antidote is available.

Racism and conservatism are the same thing in the post civil rights era. They are the beast with two backs: the American people will need more than a garden hose to stop their deranged coupling.

Alas, all that reasonable folks who care about the Common Good can ask is, once more, what shall we do with the white people? And when will there be a "national conversation" about white people, guns, mass violence, and Right-wing domestic terrorism.

I know that the answer is "never". The humanistic and patriotic concerns driving the question remain nonetheless.

What shall we do with the white people...again?

I ask that question when white men commit mass shootings. I ask that question when Right-wing domestic terrorists kill innocent people. It is unfortunate, that in the aftermath of Sunday morning's murder spree by two white supremacists in Las Vegas, I am forced, once more, to ask said question.

Mass shootings by white men, as well as Right-wing domestic terrorism, have become events akin to those in the classic comedy Groundhog Day.

Unfortunately, there is nothing humorous of funny about how white Right-wing domestic terrorists have shot up Jewish community centers, planted bombs, seen a spike in their numbers since the election of Barack Obama, are coddled and encouraged by the Fox News echo chamber and the Republican Party, and now--with Tea Party regalia, Nazi bonafides, yelling "this is a revolution!"--they kill three people during a brazen daylight attack on Sunday in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Las Vegas shooters were so contemptible that even the racist welfare king Cliven Bundy, and his band of anti-Obama brigands, apparently felt that they were too "radical" for their low tastes.

The Right-wing echo chamber helped to spawn the mass shooters named "Jared" and "Amanda".

Birtherism, an embrace of the neo-confederacy, a worshipful attitude towards the Confederate flag (i.e. "the American Swastika") and the CSA, along with an open embrace of anti-black affect and white racial resentment in a concerted effort to delegitimate the United States' first black president, are the "polite" face of American white supremacy in the first decades of the 21st century.

The Republican Party is a white identity organization.

Complementing this claim, social scientists have highlighted how the Tea Party, a herrenvolk organization motivated by white racism under the guise of "taking our country back"--which begs the question "from who?"--creates a sense of white racialized self-interest among its members. Moreover, Tea Party organizations are a way for "old school" white supremacists to recruit new members from the angry white men (and women) who constitute the more extreme elements in the Republican Party.

The Las Vegas murder spree is a clear act of domestic terrorism by members of the White Right.

Of course, the Right-wing media and its acolytes will find a way to spin and distort the facts.

"Jared" and "Amanda" placed the Gadsden flag, what is now a Tea Party icon, on the body of one of their victims; the shooters yelled "this is a revolution!" while committing murder, a seditious slogan that echoes within the Right-wing echo chamber; Nazi paraphernalia was found in their home; and the Las Vegas shooters sought out a natural alliance with Cliven Bundy and his thugs.

The Right-wing media machine will re-frame the Las Vegas shooting spree in keeping with the principles outlined by Joseph Goebbels and his genius insights about how to manipulate the mass public.

The Fox News echo chamber will chose to either:

1) ignore the events in Las Vegas;
2) highlight those tragic events as an example for why concealed carry gun laws should be the rule of the land;
3) offer the default answer: this is all somehow Barack Obama's fault;
4) advance a lazy, intellectually bankrupt, and morally empty deflection: black people in Chicago shoot each other all the time!;
5) argue that these people are "sick" and "crazy", so why are we even talking about their politics?;
6) lie and commit an intellectually rapacious and craven assault on the historical record by suggesting that white supremacist Nazis are in fact really "liberals".

The most fringe elements of the Right-wing media machine and its base will default to a standard script wherein the white supremacist Las Vegas murder spree is presented as a "false flag operation", one conducted by "liberals" to discredit conservatives with the goal of undermining "gun rights".

When Richard Hofstadter's timeless and brilliant work on "the paranoid style" in American politics is mated with Right-wing bigotry and "conspiranoid" delusions, no ready antidote is available.

Racism and conservatism are the same thing in the post civil rights era. They are the beast with two backs: the American people will need more than a garden hose to stop their deranged coupling.

Alas, all that reasonable folks who care about the Common Good can ask is, once more, what shall we do with the white people? And when will there be a "national conversation" about white people, guns, mass violence, and Right-wing domestic terrorism.

I know that the answer is "never". The humanistic and patriotic concerns driving the question remain nonetheless.

The Right-wing media machine cannot resist an opportunity to connect the 70th anniversary of D-Day with the faux Bergdahl “scandal”.

The Right-wing media is comprised of various elements such as think tanks, websites, social media, talk radio, and of course, Fox News.

Their collective goal is to disorient the American people by creating an alternate reality for conservatives—one that exists separate and apart from empirical reality--while advancing their political agenda.

My claim is not conjecture: research has shown that watching Fox News actually leads its viewers to be less informed about current events, as well as less knowledgeable across a range of other issues.

As such, the Right-wing media’s desperate efforts to smear Barack Obama are obvious and lazy.

For example, on Friday the Drudge Report and the Right-wing "news" site Weasel Zippers featured a story about how Barack Obama was shown—oh the horror!—apparently chewing bubble gum at some point during the D-Day ceremonies in France.

For the White Right, Barack Obama is an illegitimate black usurper who stole “their” White House. Thus, all of his actions stink of “incompetence” and “disloyalty” towards the United States of America.

No effort is too great for the White Right in its "struggle" to "take their country back".

In the post civil rights era, the Republican Party is sick with white racism; movement conservatism is intoxicated by white supremacy. For that political imagination, the gum chewing black president is “disrespectful”, “arrogant”, “low class”, and “uppity”.

The “black dandy” man child cannot, by definition, be President of the United States of America.

Historically, “their” country was white by law. Slavery and white supremacy were birth defects of the Constitution and Founding. Jim and Jane Crow remained the rule of the law until they were torn down by the Black Freedom Struggle.

As made clear by both their rhetoric and behavior since the election of Barack Obama, the White Right is desperate for a return to that world of white lies, white dreaming, white violence, patriarchy, female subordination, and white domination over people of color.

The National Review participated in the Right-wing media's "smear Barack Obama on D-Day" campaign as well.

They managed to find a disgruntled D-Day veteran at the anniversary celebrations in France.

Mr. George Ciampi declined the White House’s invitation to attend a private meeting with President Obama honoring America’s D-Day warriors. When queried by the National Review about his non-attendance at the event, Mr. Ciampi responded in the following way:

George thought about it for awhile and concluded he just couldn’t. “I have so many issues with the president’s policies, including the most recent ones,” he told me ruefully. “I just couldn’t convince myself to do it.”

He is not alone. The recent Bergdahl prisoner swap in which five hardened Taliban terrorists were released from prison is rubbing a lot of the military veterans attending D-Day events the wrong way. “It’s not that we don’t want to respect the commander-in-chief,” one told me sadly. “It’s just that he makes it so hard to do so.”

The members of the “Greatest Generation” are the most loyal consumers of Fox News and the Right-wing media.

Its fictions of Birtherism, “Benghazi”, the Tea Party political Right-wing paraphilia, clamors for impeaching Obama, histrionics about “Obamacare” and “death panels”, and now the “Bergdahl scandal” have sucked them into a dreamworld.

Sadly, too many members of the Greatest Generation are victims of a disinformation campaign that would have made Joseph Goebbels, Propaganda Minister for the Nazi Party, proud, validating his dictate that:

“It would not be impossible to prove with sufficient repetition and a psychological understanding of the people concerned that a square is in fact a circle. They are mere words, and words can be molded until they clothe ideas and disguise.”

Goebbels’ rules for propaganda are the foundational principles and reason d’etre driving the Fox News Right-wing media.

Furthermore, Goebbels suggested the following rules for manipulating the public:

Black rather than white propaganda must be employed when the latter is less credible or produces undesirable effects.

Propaganda may be facilitated by leaders with prestige.

Propaganda must be carefully timed.

The communication must reach the audience ahead of competing propaganda.

A propaganda campaign must begin at the optimum moment.

A propaganda theme must be repeated, but not beyond some point of diminishing effectiveness.

Propaganda must label events and people with distinctive phrases or slogans.

They must evoke responses which the audience previously possesses.

They must be capable of being easily learned.

Propaganda must facilitate the displacement of aggression by specifying the targets for hatred.

Inevitably, some readers will retreat to "Godwin's Law", crying foul, that a reference to the Nazis was evoked in a discussion of the Right-wing media machine.

Protests and complaints do not by themselves invalidate a claim.

Fox News's slogan is "fair and balanced". In reality, their coverage of the news is neither fair nor balanced. More broadly, the Right-media tells its devotees that they are offering the "truth", acting as an “antidote” to the liberal media. But, there is no liberal media, only a corporate mainstream media.

The Right-wing media presents itself as an antidote against “liberal bias”. In reality, the Right-wing media is a toxin to American civil society and the public sphere, poisoning them through extreme political polarization and disinformation which is designed to generate rage and alienation among voters.

The rage which is created by the Right-wing media machine is not unfocused: it is directed at some type of Other such as people of color, the poor, working classes, immigrants, women, gays and lesbians, Muslims, etc. who are depicted as enemies of "real (white) Americans".

It is unfortunate that the Greatest Generation were able to beat the Nazis and their allies during World War 2, but in so many ways their clear thinking and common sense have been defeated and broken by Fox News and the Right-wing media machine.

Goebbels must be smiling.

I have written a series of essays about Elliot Rodgers.

In the 24/7 news cycle, topics are treated with drive-by grace: they are discussed briefly and then the next “if it bleeds it leads” subject is the object of focus.

I have continued to write about Elliot Rodger because his murder spree is a concentrated example of so much that is wrong with American society: gun culture, consumerism, racism, woman-hating, crude sexuality as power without an appreciation for the erotic, White Supremacy, broken masculinity, a failed mental health system, and white privilege are channeled through his tortured life and gross actions.

There is a satisfaction that comes with “connecting the dots” about an issue of public concern in a way that garners acknowledgement and affirmation from the public and those in the pundit classes.

However, there is also a sickening sadness that comes with being correct about the nature of an event--how White Supremacy and whiteness hurts white people and others--that had death and destruction as a result.

Here, I wrote about how the mainstream media has, quite literally, white washed the Elliot Rodger saga, subsequently ignoring his manifesto, to remove any reference to how White Supremacy and internalized racism were major factors in his murder rampage.

My observation has been echoed and built upon by several other writers (most notably a recent piece in Al Jazeera by Dexter Thomas). Nevertheless, it remains an outlier opinion.

As evidence of how our discussions of the role that internalized white racism played in Elliot Rodger’s murder spree, and the mainstream media’s gross neglect in discussing such an obvious fact, I point to the NY Times' piece "Before Brief, Deadly Spree, Trouble Since 8".

There, the authors offer a rich and compelling narrative about Elliot Rodger’s mental health issues that led to his killing six people near Santa Barbara, California.

How many times is racism or internalized White Supremacy mentioned in the Times' recent story? Zero.

Moreover, the photo accompanying The NY Times’s story features a picture of Elliot Rodger, as a child, with his hair dyed blonde. Rodger’s hair color is presented as a curious fact, one unmoored from the larger context of his life, and the decision to kill people in a misogynistic and racist rage that he wrote extensively about in his diary.

Elliot Rodger desperately wanted to be a “fully white” man. As he detailed in his manifesto, he both idealized and idolized Whiteness.

And as he wrote in his manifesto, Elliot Rodger’s decision, with parental consent, to change his hair color to “look less Asian” is dead center in the mania that drove a self-hating white Asian to kill.

The mainstream American news media reproduces the white racial frame and the White Gaze. In addition, the American news media also helps to socialize citizens into a set of values about “appropriate” values and beliefs about the nature of social reality.

The decision makers in the American news media are also overwhelmingly white and male.

As a fact, this is not necessarily a problem. However, to the degree that such an arrangement results in a narrow, distorted, and myopic view of social reality which reinforces Whiteness and White Supremacy, those demographics can be extremely dangerous to the Truth.

Was there a pitch meeting where the role of racism and White Supremacy in the context of Elliot Rodger’s murder spree was discussed and then discarded? Who knows? In the writing of "Before Brief, Deadly Spree, Trouble Since 8", did a junior editor point out the obvious contradiction and question posed by a picture of a self-hating Elliot Rodger with blonde hair and a story which does not mention his internalized racism? I am unsure.

The famous sociolinguist Noam Chomsky has written extensively and persuasively about how the mainstream media's coverage of events is constrained within a narrow set of rules and scripts about what is considered “appropriate” for the public discourse. These rules do not need to be discussed in order to be acted upon. They exist, are understood to be real, and like many manifestations of Power, make themselves known by virtue of the consequences felt by those individuals who dare to bend or break them.

In the post civil rights era, a moment when a black man is President of the United States of America, it is acceptable for the mass media to discuss incidents of gross and ugly racism. On some occasions, a smart and especially talented journalist can find a way to sneak a discussion of institutional racism into the public discourse: Ta-Nehisi Coates' recent piece about the crimes committed against black Americans by their own country is one such example.

Yet, to talk in an honest and direct fashion about the role of race, White Supremacy, and aggrieved white male entitlement in mass gun violence remains outside of the boundaries of what constitutes “polite” public discourse.

I would like to be able to laugh as I watch American opinion makers avoid discussing the influence of internalized White Supremacy and racism in Elliot Rodger’s wicked and evil behavior. In all, they are avoiding the role of white racism in Elliot Rodger’s behavior almost like it is a hot rivet that has fallen down the back of their shirts while innocently walking past a construction site manned by buffoons.

In avoiding the fact of White Supremacy’s relationship to Elliot Rodger, the mass media is offering up a racialized version of classic comedy routines by The Three Stooges or Laurel and Hardy.

I want so very much to laugh. I cannot. Why?

I am concerned and worried about the mental and spiritual well-being of my white brothers and sisters and how White Supremacy does so much harm to too many of them. In that sentiment, I am like most black and brown Americans; I am their best friend because I am willing to tell them the truth when others are not.

Once more and again, what is The NY Times, and the supposedly "liberal" media, afraid of in their reporting about Elliot Rodger? Why are they running away from the role that White Supremacy and internalized racism played in his deeds?

The 24/7 news cycle is not interested in finding the truth about a given matter, and then subsequently offering up useful information that can in turn be used to create an educated and informed electorate.

Instead, the mainstream corporate news media is driven by superficial discussions of topics of public concern that can drive ratings.

As I wrote here and here, Elliot Rodger should be a focal point for a discussion of broader issues about race, gun violence, gender, and mental health issues. Apparently, those most obvious concerns and questions are verboten on the Right...and even among some on the "Left" who have internalized the norms of "colorblind" racism.

Neither white conservatives nor white liberals want to talk seriously about white privilege and Whiteness as it relates to Elliot Rodger: it would seem that both sides are largely in agreement about the necessity of protecting the nobility and innocence of Whiteness and White Masculinity.

I am fascinated by how race has not been more central to the mainstream media's discussion of Elliot Rodger's murder rampage. By comparison, the conversation about Elliot Rodger and gender is much more sharp and enlightened.

However, there has not been, with a few exceptions, a focused discussion of how Elliot Rodger, a white Asian, internalized white racism and White Supremacy against people of color, and then acted upon it through misogynist violence.

Nor have I witnessed a conversation in the mainstream media about Elliot Rodger, the question of "mixed race" identity, and the specific mental health challenges around self-esteem and anxiety which some members of that group may experience because of their "racial" identities.

My claims are precise and careful: I am not arguing that self-identified "mixed-race" or "biracial" people are more prone to mass shootings, gun violence, or the like. No. The data do not support such a claim.

Rather, I am interested in how the media is not talking about how Elliot Rodger, a version of the tragic mulatto figure, a self-hating Asian-American with deep levels of internalized racism, had those feelings mated and mixed with (likely) preexisting mental health issues, and then committed mass murder based on his racist and sexist motivations.

The mass media seeks out simple explanations for complex problems. As such, discussions of race and racism are flat, ahistorical, and lack nuance. In the case of Elliot Rodger, it would be both easy, and also a public service, for a news program to feature a panel discussion with psychologists, historians, mental health practitioners, anti-racism activists, and (other) social scientists to discuss how internalized racism can lead to violence.

I am transparent. I have dated and loved across the color line. I did so without apology or regret.

One of my rules for a long-term relationship with someone who is not black is that we must eventually have a conversation about the racial identity of our potential offspring.

I am a Black American. My children will be Black Americans. Regardless of the "racial" identity of their mother, our/my/her children must be given the spiritual, intellectual, emotional, moral, and philosophical armor to navigate a white racist society. I have that basic obligation as their father.

Those children will be black and may have a white, Asian, Hispanic, or First Nations, mother. One identity does not make impossible the other. Ultimately, I would consider myself a failure as a father if my "mixed race" child came home, confused that someone called him or her a "nigger", as they imagined themselves to not be a black person.

Did Elliot Rodger's parents give him a talk about survival strategies, race, and identity in a manner appropriate for his life as an Asian-American man?

More generally, why is the mainstream media not discussing questions of internalized white racism and mental health?