On Dec 1, Philip Bump, a correspondent for The Washington Post, published an in-depth and serious analysis of the multiple claims being promoted by Mike Lindell. The title of my posting today is inspired by the title of his article – “Mike Lindell is bringing an imaginary knife to a gun fight”. That one phrase beautifully sums things up.
Here are a few very apt extracts …
…Lindell pushed this false narrative even though there was no evidence to support it because he had learned from his knowledge of game theory and prior experience … that lying about Dominion would be good for MyPillow’s bottom line….and would lead to other benefits, including, for example, Trump’s anticipated endorsement for Lindell’s run for governor of Minnesota…
… He is the emperor and his fraud claims are his clothes and here he comes, parading into court…
… I am myself decent at math and pretty good at assessing statistical analysis so I can say with certainty that Lindell’s response very much does not prove that the election was stolen…
Phil then proceed to slice and dice into the details and finishes with this …
…It’s the same claims he’s been making for months and that he’s for months been completely unable to substantiate. Maybe that’s good enough for the folks who tune in to his bespoke TV network, but it’s not going to convince a judge and it’s certainly not going to worry Dominion.
The day of reckoning for Lindell’s claims is getting closer and closer and he has done nothing to prepare.
Phil is so spot on. Lindell is indeed rapidly hurtling towards his appointment with a $1.3 billion lawsuit wall, and he really is not prepared for it at all.
So what else happened this past week?
Below you will find my usual selection of some truly bizarre claims that popped up during the last 7 days. So, with a hat-tip to my main source, Right-Wing watch, it is time to dive in.
Nathalie Baptiste @ Mother Jones: MAGA Congressman Falsely Claims Omicron Variant Is Part of Plot to Rig 2022 Election.
- To save you the bother of checking, it is Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas).
- Is he really claiming that the South African doctors who reported it to the World Health Organization are part of the Democrats’ plan to steal the 22 elections? Apparently yes.
Pastor Greg Locke claimed that “hospitals of America are the death camps of East Germany”
- I put up a separate posting just for this earlier in the week.
- The gem here is that he demonstrated his commitment to his claim by confirming that he would be prepared to “miss the Chinese buffet” to get this message out. Well hey, that’s such an awe inspiring sacrifice.
Marcus Lamb, who used his Daystar television network to produce dozens of programs spreading disinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines, has died of COVID-19.
- This tempts me into considering the thought that Karma is indeed real.
Eric Metaxas, who earlier this year told people not to get vaccinated against COVID-19 “if only to be a rebel,” was missing from his radio show for two weeks because he and his family got infected by the virus, including his 94-year-old father who ended up having to go to the emergency room.
- I have exactly zero sympathy for Eric.
- Metaxas obviously didn’t learn anything from his illness because on his first show back, he interviewed Alex Berenson, whom The Atlantic dubbed “The Pandemic’s Wrongest Man.”
Kent Christmas thinks it is odd that not “one big Democrat” has died from COVID-19.
- He is of course right, it really is very odd that those that get vaccinated and also follow health guidance don’t end up dying. It’s almost as if … gasp! … the vaccine really works and the mask wearing really does help.
- Don’t hold your breath waiting for him to join up the dots.
Rick Wiles warns that COVID-19 vaccines are a plot to depopulate the world by changing your DNA: “Only those who resist this agenda will remain as the pure humans on planet Earth.”
- Personally, I’m rather fond of breathing, so I’ve had the vaccine. I’m also not worried about my DNA because I’m not f**king stupid.
- What is an actual plot to really depopulate the world is the stance being taken by Rick.
- Fact Check: No the vaccine does not alter your DNA. (Details half way down the CDC page here)
Some deep thoughts from Wayne Allyn Root: “Scramble the letters of Delta-Omicron and you get: MEDIA CONTROL. Not a coincidence. Omicron alone scrambled spells out ‘MORONIC.’
- His claim is that there exists a nefarious plot, and to ensure nobody ever finds out “they” randomly encode details of it as clues within the name of the virus.
- Least you wonder, Root has a well-established track record for promoting absurd conspiracy claims.
- He has in the past been ordered, legally, to stop promoting fake COVID cures.
- For the cherry on the cake here he has also promoted an anti-vaccine stance. The claim he makes at that link is blatantly fraudulent, but hey, this is a guy who was selling fake COVID cures, so lying about the vaccine is small change when compared to that.
Robin Bullock claims that companies offering DNA genetic testing were part of a plot to create COVID-19, which is actually a biological weapon that was released so they could give you a vaccine that will steal your soul: “I’m convinced that’s what all those DNA tests were about. People say, ‘Well, you can’t prove that.’ Maybe not, but you can’t prove that it wasn’t.”
- Things you can’t prove unreal; Bigfoot, aliens, fairies, Santa, elves, goblins, Zeus, Thor, etc… so using Robin’s “logic”, since we can’t disprove any of it, we simply have to believe it all.
- Except of course we don’t. Anybody, and I really do mean anybody, making any claim needs to cite evidence. If they can’t, then you can simply dismiss the claim.
- semper necessitas probandi incumbit ei qui agit
Ninety days ago, Josh Bernstein predicted this … “there’s no way that we’re not going to have a terrorist attack within the next 90 days” as the result of the withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Afghanistan: “There’s going to be a major terrorist attack—major—within the next 90 days.”
- Well here we are, it is now far more than 90 days later.
- Honestly are you actually surprised? Anything and everything he says is wrong. This is just one more notch to add to his banner of wrongness.
Jackson Lahmeyer followed through on his promise to make a video that would “cause a lot of liberal tears.” It was just a video of him burning some masks: “You can just feel the communism burning.”
- Lots of liberal tears indeed … literally crying with laughter.
Messianic rabbi Jonathan Cahn Says ‘We Are Now Living in the Days of the Reign of Baal’
- Cue lots of religious hand waving garnished with “Ta-Da … my God did it”.
- His latest is that he is claiming that the MAGA insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 was foretold in 2 Kings
- All he really confirms is that the bible is the ultimate Rorschach test.
David Barton Says the Second Amendment Guarantees Your Right to Own a Nuclear Bomb
- His argument is … “I don’t care if my neighbor has a nuclear weapon as long as he has that defensive concept that he will never use that unless it’s being used against him.”. The insanity here is bloody obvious. If somebody nukes your house, you will not exactly be in a position to respond in a similar manner. Things such as breathing and being alive are a prerequisite to such a “defensive” response.
Conspiracy Theorist Anna Khait Says Mark Taylor Is ‘Literally a Pawn of the Devil Himself’
- The backstory here is that a few weeks ago self-appointed prophet Mark attacked other prophets, declaring they were “operating in witchcraft,”
- Anna’s attack on him is simply serving up the same dish as a response.
- In other words, it’s time to break out the popcorn and sit back as these lunatics all rip each other apart.
Cristina Cabrera @ Talking Points Memo: QAnon Celeb Michael Flynn Privately Admitted QAnon Is Baloney.
- The only quibble I have is that “baloney” is waaaay too polite. Your homework for today is to insert a far more appropriate term.
- Given everything else Flynn has done, the discovery that he cosplays being into QAnon just to get a bit of support is really not a surprise to anybody.
In 2018, Laura Loomer handcuffed herself to Twitter’s headquarters. Three years later, Twitter’s CEO resigned. Coincidence? Loomer doesn’t think so.
- I’m honestly surprised that we get to hear about this latest claim. She has been banned from almost every social media platform on the planet. PayPal, GoFundMe, Uber, Lyft, and Venmo have also banned her.
- She is so crazy that even CPAC banned her.
- She also got banned from the Bitcoin 2021 conference, a place where simply breathing is normally the only criteria for participating.
- Being the nutter that she is, she fits right in with the GOP and was their official candidate in Florida’s 21st congressional district in 2020
- Apparently she has declared her intent to run again in 22.
Kat Kerr reports that God continues to assure her that “there’s going to be a landslide of fraud exposure” that will overturn the results of the 2020 election.
- I do wonder if she will continue to bang this drum after 2024 and beyond or if she will simply swap 2024 for 2020.
- Perhaps one of the 100 million angels she claims do her bidding can help her to decide.
Jim Swift @ The Bulwark: Conservative Media Makes Up a Fake Florida Mansion for Nancy Pelosi.
- If you saw this Pelosi Mansion story blow through the conservative ecosystem, then yes, it was a totally fake story.
- It started on a fringe webpage called Big League Politics, that runs MyPillow ads, and then passed through a site run by somebody from Fox News
- Washington Examiner staff reporter Haisten Willis picked it up and repeated it. Sean Hannity and Dinesh D’Souza also tweeted it
- Did anybody fact check? Yep, Claudine Zap at Realtor.com, a Real Estate listing website, made a few calls and confirmed that it was totally fake, then wrote that up. This was apparently something that nobody inside the conservative echo chamber thought of doing. While “thinking” is not exactly their strength, rather obviously gullibility is.
- Don’t hold your breath waiting for corrections and apologies to flood in.
The False Profit$
Leigh Valentine claims to have had a prophetic dream in 1987 of the nation cloaked in darkness until Donald Trump emerged: “He was this bright light that God Almighty had anointed.”
- His messiah, supposedly God’s anointed one, Mr Two Corinthians, is way too busy playing golf to be off doing messiah things these days.
- I’m also not exactly convinced that robbing from the poor and giving tax breaks to the rich is what messiahs are supposed to do.
Kat Kerr insists that her prophecies don’t have to correspond to the Bible because she is receiving revelation directly from God and Jesus.
- Least you wonder, yes, she does tend to stray way outside the ususal religious parameters. She is basically a failed psychic who does the usual fake psychic thing of supposedly bringing messages from departed loved ones. She dropped all the talk of spirits and instead dresses in all up with Christian-Speak using terms such as angels instead.
- It is all about just one thing. People pass and so she leverages their grief to give them false hope and earn $$
Pastor Shane Vaughn insists that Europeans didn’t steal North America from the Native Americans because the Earth belongs to God and if God wants to send one group of people to slaughter another group of people and drive them off a piece of land, that’s his prerogative.
- This is simply this weeks crazy shit from Shane.
- His creative writing course is really paying dividends via his weekly YouTube hits.
Hemant Mehta @ Friendly Atheist: Evangelist: Your Circumcised Tithes Will Protect Your Family.
- Its Robin Bullock yet again. Here he is trying to con the gullible out of cash by claiming that those that Tithe (by sending $$ to him) have money that is “circumcised” and so they get special treatment from God when spending it. His twist is that if you don’t do this then you and your family might die in an auto accident.
- Robin is literally giving religious donations a protection racket twist. “Nice life you have there, real shame if something nasty were to happen, so you need to tithe“
- It is perhaps capitalism as a religion, Robin, along with many like him, would be a lot more honest if they replaced the symbol of the cross with the dollar sign.
Self-Appointed prophet Mark Taylor warns that “the patriots” will not support Donald Trump if he runs for president in 2024 unless he denounces vaccines and then arrests all those who “led him astray” and charges them with treason and genocide.
- I quite honestly don’t think that the New England Patriots ever did support Trump.
Pastor and self-appointed fake prophet Hank Kunneman claims that one of the prophecies he delivered which appeared never to come to pass actually did happen but was covered up for national security reasons.
- None of Hank’s “prophecies” have ever actually come to pass.
- In the clip linked to above he is making vague unverifiable claims. He does not even say what it was he “predicted” that was supposedly covered up. This is religious theatre without any actual content.
- “Predictions” generally works like this: vague babbling that can be retrofitted to almost any actual event; declaring he predicted something after the event, and never before; “predicting” something that looks highly probable anyway and then claiming a hit when it happens. It is really all about gathering $$$ and influence. These prophets play the exact same game that the fake psychics play.
This week’s final quote
Let’s finish with this …
“There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.”