Post-Racist America Open Thread: Toppling Silent Sam

Once again, in a less news-intensive week, the protest where a notorious monument to treason in the defense of slavery was pulled down would’ve been a leading headline and the excuse for much punditorial thumb-sucking…

But of course the WUT ABOUT MAH HURTIGE?!? crew — and we’re not talking UNC students, we’re talking Repub opportunists and the revanchists who support them — will not let their bronze idol go unavenged. Per the local News & Observer:

The UNC Board of Governors will hire an outside firm to look into university and police actions at the protest where Silent Sam was toppled this week, the board’s leader said Wednesday.

At least one board member, former Republican state Sen. Thom Goolsby, posted a YouTube video with his questions about the incident, including what’s being done to repair and reinstall the statue.

Harry Smith, who became chairman last month, said Wednesday in an interview he wants an independent group to study the facts of what happened, or what didn’t happen, during Monday’s rally. A group within a crowd of about 250 protesters used rope to pull down the controversial Silent Sam Confederate monument Monday night, more than two hours into a rally…
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Sad, Low Energy Late-Night Open Thread: Rallying the Deplorables, Disappointing the Rest of Us

From early reports, looks like the biggest news from the rally is that it was a bog-standard Trump rally — no epic meltdowns, no mention of the day’s earlier events. SAD!

Biggest takeaway that I can see: Trump *is* still capable of pulling himself together to get through another one of his Greatest Hits Arena Shows, like any other professional performer on auto-pilot. Bad news for the rest of the Repub criminals… it’s gonna be that much harder to convince anyone outside The Base that “we” need to take away Granpa’s car keys & checkbook if the old man can fumble convincingly through a competency performance in front of a sympathetic judge.

Ah, well, we all live with our little disappointments…

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Conspiracy Fantasists Open Thread: War to the Little Death

Hitting ’em where it hurts…


Notice the division here: On one side, those trying (at various degrees of earnestness) to use the Qanon flock to further promote their own celebrity; on the other, those — like Barr and Schilling — who just enjoy the warm bilious glee of being among Those Who Know.

It’s a war between the Profiteers and the Believers. And, IMO, it’s just one facet of the current war of all-against-all that’s currently roiling the whole real, serious Republican party.

The Buzzfeed post Betty linked earlier is actually a pretty good overall explainer, and Ryan Broderick ‘follows the breadcrumbs’:

While it’s almost impossible to prove who started QAnon, there is some evidence that it was meant to be a prank all along. And more importantly, it’s looking more and more likely that QAnon is actually a prank by leftists or anarchists to make the far-right look deranged.
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Repub Values Open Thread: Corey “Leeeeroy!” Stewart

With such a Boss Hogg meat-mugg, I guess ol’ Corey figured he’d be wasting an asset in his hometown Duluth…

Stewart is not a “Confederate Symbols Defender.” Neither is he a “bombastic conservative.” He is an unapologetic public racist, and damned proud of it, who goes out of his way to associate with other unapologetic public racists, who are damned proud of it, too. Here’s a little flashback from The Washington Post at the time of the terrorist attack in Charlottesville:

“All the weak Republicans, they couldn’t apologize fast enough,” Stewart said in an interview with The Washington Post. “They played right into the hands of the left wing. Those [Nazi] people have nothing to do with the Republican Party. There was no reason to apologize.” However, Stewart has made several joint appearances with ­Jason Kessler, organizer of the “Unite the Right” rally that sparked the unrest in Charlottesville. Stewart met Kessler at an event earlier this year to protest the removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee from Emancipation Park in Charlottesville. And at one point during the primary race, Stewart attended a Charlottesville news conference with Kessler and Isaac Smith, founders of Unity and Security for America (USA), a fledgling group that calls for “defending Western Civilization.”

… There simply is not a Democratic equivalent to an outright neo-Confederate’s getting a nomination for a seat in the U.S. Senate. Stewart shows, once again, that the prion disease remains active throughout the Republican Party at every level, and this at a time in which the people who could do the most to recreate the party’s immune system are too timid or too nuts to do it. Doug Jones’ surprise win in Alabama wasn’t enough to keep Republican voters in Virginia from nominating Zombie Jeff Davis, despite the fact that doing so might turn out to be a termination notice for a Republican majority in Congress…

Stewart’s got his defenders, of course…

So, there’s at least one non-political-junkie who remembers the name of HRC’s 2016 running mate.

The other Republicans are somewhat less enthused about Mr. Stewart, per Politico:

The Senate GOP’s campaign arm hasn’t endorsed Stewart, who has made defending Confederate monuments a central plank of his political career. And its chairman said that the committee has “no plans” to spend any money on Stewart in his race against Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.).

“At the senatorial committee we’re focusing on Missouri, Indiana, North Dakota, Montana, West Virginia and Florida. There are great races around the country. [Virginia] is not the map,” said National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Cory Gardner (R-Colo.). “We have a big map this year, and what I’ve laid out in races that I’ve talked about, Virginia’s not on it.”
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Open Thread: What We Choose to Remember

(Jim Morin via

E.J. Dionne, at the Washington Post:

[P]hony claims and nasty innuendo built around imagined sins against patriotism and our veterans predate President Trump. But Trump’s attacks on NFL players who have knelt during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial injustice represent a particularly vile effort to mobilize political support by implying that the dissenting athletes, most of them black, lack a devotion to country.

The privileged NFL owners chose to capitulate to this divisive propaganda. The anthem at the heart of this discussion celebrates our country as “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” Yet the owners’ action is the opposite of bravery and a blow to freedom. Many on the right have spoken out forcefully for free speech on college campuses. But do they now propose to turn stadiums into “safe spaces” where conservatives deny others the liberties they claim for themselves?…

Democrats fret that even engaging with Trump on all of this risks placing progressives on the wrong side of patriotism. But the history of Memorial Day should teach us that the meaning of our patriotism has long been a matter of necessary struggle.

We should not let the divider in the Oval Office keep us from joining together in profound appreciation of our fallen. They perished under a flag that represents “liberty and justice for all.” The living cannot surrender either of these commitments.