5 Worst Right-Wing Moments This Week: Katrina Pierson Divorces Reality for Good
A good deal of the notable right-wing spewage this week emerged from the nexus of nutjobs that loosely make up the Trump camp. Of course, the fish stinks from the head, and Trump is nothing if not a stinky head, suggesting at one point that we do “a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,” to combat terror.
Here’s a review of what you might have missed.
1. Katrina Pierson set a new record for speed lying.
Before he suggested the U.S. amp up the war crimes, Trump backpedaled last weekend on his proposal to ban all Muslims from entering the country. Well, maybe not all Muslims, he said. His ban would only concern Muslims emigrating to the U.S. from "terror countries"—whatever the f**k that means.
While Trump, who enjoys a wobbly relationship with the truth, merely dissembled, his fearless, fact-free national spokesperson, Katrina Pierson, is completely divorced from reality. She may have set a new record for speed lying on CNN Monday, telling three whoppers in the space of 12 minutes (and many smaller fibs in between).
First, she asserted that Trump had never called for a ban on all Muslims. “I know the news media was reporting that the initial ban was against all Muslims, and that simply was not the case,” she said, attacking her familiar boogeyman, the media. The patent falseness of this statement did not appear to perturb her one bit. The trouble is, there’s an actual record, a multimedia record, including one in writing from the Trump campaign last December, in which he proudly called for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” But then again, why would evidence to the contrary bother Pierson?
Continuing her streak of complete imperviousness to the truth, Pierson claimed there is no vetting process for Syrian refugees. Not so, host Briana Keilar explained carefully, at which point Pierson falsely asserted that the FBI and CIA have said there is no vetting process, which is no less untrue despite seeming to be more specific.
Oh, to be able to live life unburdened by all those pesky actual facts and reality-based knowledge.
2. Corey Lewandowski uses a nonsense argument and seems to think it makes perfect sense.
Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski is off to a great start at his new gig at CNN. As a result of accepting the CNN gig after Trump canned him, Lewandowski lost a book deal and caused a minor insurrection at the cable news channel among journalists who objected to the idea of a Trump mouthpiece with a reputation for roughing up reporters working in their midst.
This week, Lewandowski babbled complete nonsense in an attempt to explain Trump’s blatantly illegal attempts to solicit campaign donations from British parliament ministers. These solicitations came to light when a British politician blew the whistle.
What’s going on with that, co-host Alisyn Camerota asked Lewandowski.
"Well my guess is the individual opted into an email system because, that I know of, the Trump campaign has never purchased a list to solicit any information and so, if it's an opt-in and you send a request out to the list of people who opted in to be part of this, that's perfectly legal..." Lewandowski said.
This not even internally coherent explanation has to be rated a total fail, since why would someone complain if they opted in?
Like a good Trumpian, Lewandowski stood his ground in brave resistance to common sense or facts in the ensuing exchange.
Camerota: She said she didn’t opt in.
Lewandowski: Look, it’s possible. But the bottom line is that anybody who opted into the system voluntarily, and anybody can opt out at any time they want by going to....[sic]
Looks like Lewandowski has opted out of reality.
3. Trump showed off his math skills.
The 5-3 Supreme Court decision Monday striking down Texas’ restrictive abortion clinic laws did not sit well with Donald Trump. It also caused him to lose his grasp of very basic math, if indeed he ever had one.
In response to the ruling, Trump said, “Now if we had—Scalia was living, or if Scalia was replaced by me, you wouldn’t have had that, OK? It would’ve been the opposite.”
Notice how he hedged his bets with that: “the opposite." The vagueness of this word choice suggests that he might not actually know what the ruling was, though his sense is that his potential voters didn’t like it.
How exactly the math would add up if Trump were president and appointed Scalia’s successor (a truly horrifying thought we can’t believe we articulated so calmly), since this was not one of those 4-4 deadlocked non-decisions, is just not clear.
Then again, few things in the word-farts the Donald expels are very clear.
4. Fox Newsians got very upset about minimum wage going up.
Highly punchable, smug Fox Business Newsian Stuart Varney thinks that raising the minimum wage is just terrible, and will probably lead to Armageddon.
He made no secret of his feelings about people possibly being able to make a living wage when he kicked off a panel discussion thusly:
“How about this one? It is July the 1st, minimum wage increases go into effect today in 15 cities spread across five states. I think this is the march towards $15 an hour. Want to go around the block here with everyone. First to you, Tammy. What do you think about this march to $15 — legislated wages?”
Ooohhh, scary. A march toward $15. Legislated wages.
Then, fellow panel member Tammy Bruce brought up another scary thing: Robots. “It's a march towards robotics, is what it is. You're going to have kiosks that are going to be able to sell things to people.”
Don’t tell her there are already kiosks selling things to people.
It could be worse than robots, Varney suggested, we could turn into Bermuda, which is a very expensive place.
Yikes. Not Bermuda.
Several agreed it was sad that 12-year-olds don’t bag groceries for tips anymore. Those were the days.
Varney did some quick math in his head. He’s a business guy, so he’s good with numbers. “$15 an hour, for a 40-hour week, is $30,000 a year. I mean, what—“
Someone interrupted. It’s hard to know where Varney was going with that. Was he suddenly realizing you can’t support a family on that? Or even a single person, in most places?
Hard to say what thoughts blew in the wind through those ears.
5. WTF is wrong with Laura Ingraham?
Normally, conservative radio host Laura Ingraham confines her hatemongering to immigrants, but she generously extended her invective to include transgender people this week. Why? Because she’s an equal opportunity bully and hater, that’s why.
Ingraham was just cracking herself up with her suggestion to those who are worried about the fact that transgender people might be able to use the bathroom with them (which is basically no one): Try diapers!
For "all of you who are bathroom-goers," Ingraham suggested, "I think a lot of people are going to be walking around with just Depends on from now on. They're just not going to use the bathroom."
"Adult diapers, diapers for everybody. No one's going to be going to the bathroom," she continued, apparently enjoying this hilarious thread. "Everyone will just be happy. Everyone's bathroom is just their own clothes, OK? So this is what we're going to go to."
Apparently, Ingraham needs a Huggie.