Alex Seitz-Wald

10 Things Conservatives Rarely Acknowledge About Reagan

Reagan was not the man conservatives claim he was. This image of Reagan as a conservative superhero is myth, created to unite the various factions of the right behind a common leader. In reality, Reagan was no conservative ideologue or flawless commander-in-chief. Reagan regularly strayed from conservative dogma — he raised taxes eleven times as president while tripling the deficit — and he often ended up on the wrong side of history, like when he vetoed an Anti-Apartheid bill.

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8 Juicy Allegations From the New Bachmann “Tell-All” Book

A new book co-written by a former senior staffer on Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign alleges that the conservative congresswoman is a fake Christian diva who fires pregnant staffers on Christmas Eve and takes advantage of her devoted supporters, when not being taken advantage of by the political consultants she hired.

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Education "Reformers" Defend School Chief Caught Giving "A" to Charter School Initially Graded "C"

Tony Bennett, Florida’s education chief, abruptly resigned yesterday after an AP investigation revealed that in his old job running Indiana’s schools, he frantically overhauled the state’s evaluation system to avoid giving a poor grade to a charter school run by a prominent Republican donor. In addition to his charter school advocacy, Bennett was also known for his staunch support of standardized testing.

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George Zimmerman Car Crash Hero Story: Too Good to Be True

It seemed stranger than fiction, as even his lawyer acknowledged, that George Zimmerman’s first appearance just days after he was acquitted for the killing of Trayvon Martin would be to rescue a nice family of four from their overturned SUV. But that’s what reportedly happened on July 17, leading his defenders to call him a hero and some critics to claim the event was a hoax aimed at boosting his popularity.

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Secrets of the Right: Selling Garbage to Your Fans

If the late social critic Eric Hoffer is correct in his often quoted (inaccurately, it turns out) adage that “every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket,” then the conservative movement is well onto the third phase of that life cycle.

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Meet the "Southern Avenger"! Another Member of Rand Paul's Team Has White Supremacist Past

Jack Hunter, who co-authored Rand Paul’s 2011 book and now directs new media for the Kentucky senator, has a past alter ego as the “Southern Avenger,” a provocative radio personality known for wearing a luchador mask emblazoned with the Confederate flag and for making outrageous comments about race and Southern secession, Alana Goodman of the Washington Free Beacon reveals today.

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New Levels of Absurdity: Alex Jones Says The Government is Turning Us Gay with Chemical Warfare

Long before the Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act, conspiracy broadcaster Alex Jones was warning his viewers that the government was turning people gay by putting chemicals in their juice boxes, water bottles, and potato chip bags that feminized men.

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Who Will Be The Next Bachmann?

With Rep. Michele Bachmann’s impending retirement, the Tea Party vacuum grows. Allen West, Joe Walsh, Jim DeMint, Ron Paul and now Bachmann are gone. Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin are off of cable news.

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Meet the Former Aide to Dick Cheney and Wife of a Mitt Romney Advisor Who Happens to Be at the Center of the Benghazi Scandal

After ABC News released emails detailing the evolution of the Obama administration’s talking points on the Benghazi terror attack, much of the right’s ire has focused on Victoria Nuland, the State Department spokesperson who asked for the removal of references to al-Qaida and the CIA’s warnings about the dangers to U.S. diplomats in Libya.

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Why People Believe in Conspiracy Theories

We’ve written before about the historical and social aspects of conspiracy theories, but wanted to learn more about the psychology of people who believe, for instance, that the Boston Marathon bombing was a government “false flag” operation. Psychological forces like motivated reasoning have long been associated with conspiracy thinking, but scientists are learning more every year. For instance, a British study published last year found that people who believe one conspiracy theory are prone to believe many, even ones that are completely contradictory.

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