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Posts Tagged ‘Right-wing extremism’

Colorado bombing-attempt suspect identified: profile points to white-supremacist background

Crooks and Liars- By David Neiwert

April 25, 2011 08:00 AM

[Video from Denver’s Channel 9 News]

John earlier reported on a bizarre case involving an attempted bombing of a mall in Littleton, Colorado, on the anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre in that town last Wednesday.

It seems they’re catching up to the would-be bomber — or at least, they’ve identified him:

Earl Albert Moore, 65, served a federal prison sentence for bank robbery and was released just seven days before authorities believe he left a poorly crafted bomb in a stairwell in Jefferson County’s Southwest Plaza Mall.

Authorities found a small fire, two propane tanks and a crude pipe bomb on Wednesday, the anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre, which prompted mass evacuations and put a community on edge.

Records from the Federal Bureau of Prisons show Moore was released from custody April 13 and remained on supervised parole at the time of the alleged bomb attempt.

Court records show he robbed a West Virginia bank of $2,546, assaulted a bank employee and used a deadly weapon in the course of the 2005 robbery.

It also appears that he has quite a background — including both a tax-resistance case and at least one very interesting tattoo:

Moore’s criminal record in Colorado dates back to 1984 with a drug possession charge. He served six months in state prison on a felony burglary charge out of Arapahoe County in 2004.

VIDEO AND MORE HERE

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As predicted, Beck goes full-bore Bircher with hour-long promotion of Griffin’s anti-Fed conspiracy tome

Crooks and Liars- By David Neiwert

March 26, 2011 08:00 AM

We warned this was coming: On Friday, Glenn Beck devoted his entire hour to promoting the conspiracy theories of G. Edward Griffin, a John Bircher and 9/11 truther whose book, The Creature from Jekyll Island, attacks the Federal Reserve as a nefarious cabal intent on enslaving and destroying America.

It was quite a performance: Among other things we learned from Griffin was that he believes there is no actual gold at Fort Knox (maybe Goldfinger rendered it radioactive, eh?) and that there is a real inflation rate of around 20 percent right now.

Well, as we explained already:

Beck, as we all know, has previously demonstrated a fondness for the Birch Society, and this is consistent with that: Griffin, after all, was a close personal friend and longtime associate of Birch Society founder Robert Welch, and wrote a popular Birch book published in 1964, The Fearful Master: A Second Look at the United Nations.

The Creature from Jekyll Island is in many ways a compendium of previous works claiming that the Federal Reserve is a fundamentally illegitimate — and therefore deeply nefarious — organization. Most of these theories were deeply anti-Semitic in nature, since they depicted the Fed’s bankers as part of a Jewish cabal intent on destroying white American society. What sets Griffin’s work apart is that — like most Birch texts, which assiduously avoided anti-Semitism — he manages to scrub out the anti-Semitic elements while keeping the paranoid conspiracist elements intact.

Since its publication in 1994, Griffin’s book has become a popular text for a large number of right-wing extremists, particularly tax protesters and Patriot movement believers. Griffin himself was involved in organizing a gathering on Jekyll Island last year that the Southern Poverty Law Center credits with helping revive the militia movement.

It has been debunked thoroughly, of course — probably most notably by historian Gerry Rough, whose three-part series on the origins of the Fed, “Another Twist on the Jacksonian Bank War,” pretty thoroughly reveal just how fraudulent Griffin’s text really is. You can read it here: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

[Rough has debunked Griffin further in other essays as well: here, here, and here.

Meanwhile, Media Matters’ research team has a complete rundown on Griffin. From an earlier piece:

Griffin, in addition to spinning conspiracy theories about the Fed, is also a 9-11 truther and has written extensively about the U.S. government’s “facilitation” of the attacks. In April 2008, Griffin appeared on the radio program of conspiracist Alex Jones and claimed that he predicted just days after 9-11 that “the FBI and the intelligence agencies of the federal government had advance knowledge of this attack but did nothing to stop it,” and that he was proven right. He also is — or, at least, was — a member of the ultra-right wing John Birch Society. He wrote a 1970 pamphlet entitled “This is the John Birch Society: An Invitation to Join,” and a 1975 book entitled The Life and Words of Robert Welch: Founder of the John Birch Society.

VIDEOS AND MORE HERE

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Vodpod videos no longer available.

Will Arizona give neo-Nazi border vigilantes an official blessing?

Crooks & Liars- By David Neiwert
September 13, 2010 04:00 PM

Those armed neo-Nazis out running vigilante border patrols apparently now want to obtain official status for their group:

J.T. Ready, a neo-Nazi who recently began conducting heavily armed desert patrols in search of “narco-terrorists” and illegal immigrants in Pinal County, told The Kansas City Star that he was working on a proposal seeking state approval for his group, the U.S. Border Guard.

“I’m putting together a package and presenting it to the Arizona Legislature and saying, ‘Why don’t we go ahead and make the border rangers official, or completely reactivate the Arizona Rangers and we’ll work together,’ ” he said.

The Arizona Rangers were created in 1901 to protect the territory from outlaws and rustlers. The group was re-established in 1957.

But watchdog groups say Ready’s patrol illustrates why states should not sanction defense forces.

“We know that the neo-Nazis carry guns, but here’s an example of neo-Nazis with guns trying to position themselves to become an instrument of state policy,” said Leonard Zeskind, the president of the Kansas City-based Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights.

They’re also reaching the level of being a private army:

Ready, a neo-Nazi, says his border guard includes heavily armed militias that search for “narco-terrorists” and illegal immigrants in Pinal County.

“We have fully automatic weapons — legally registered — grenade launchers, night vision, body armor,” he said. “We’re definitely going out there fully armed and equipped. When you’re going up against people with AK-47s and grenade launchers, you don’t want to go out there with a slingshot.”

In most states, you’d assume that Ready’s campaign to obtain official status would naturally die a-borning. But in Arizona — which has a predilection for inverting reality when it comes to border violence, not to mention an ongoing white supremacist problem — there’s always a chance.

Especially when you consider that Ready has friends in high places — including State Sen. Russell Pearce, author of SB1070, and Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Indeed, Ready has been working tirelessly at making himself a familiar presence on the Arizona landscape.

Of course, it’s always amusing when conservatives write op-eds for the Washington Post complaining that liberals outside of Arizona perceive a lot of racism in the state’s anti-immigration hysteria — as though somehow that perception is mistaken.

You’ll also note that none other than the Instapundit approves of these groups:

But Glenn Reynolds, a law professor at the University of Tennessee and an expert on militias, said he saw no problem with such groups being involved with state defense forces.

“It’s not some crazy idea that someone has come up with out of the blue,” Reynolds said. “Historically, that’s how militias were organized. It’s sort of back to the future.” Reynolds, the author of the widely read political blog Instapundit, said the state defense force has operated in Tennessee for many years.

Back to the future indeed.

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During yesterday’s Glenn Beck radio show, Beck delivered a 10-minute monologue in which he hit all of his phony-baloney touchstones — some of them, as I’ve been writing for the last several weeks, are dangerous and some are simply ridiculous. But primarily, Beck was in full televangelist mode about God and something about a “plan” and, in the process, he dovetailed into a little McCarthyism and, as usual, a little historical revisionism. He even shrunk into a defensive bit refuting the accusations that he’s a faker who’s conning his audience.

Now, before you listen to this epic clip courtesy of Media Matters, I should warn you to turn down your speakers, because the over-the-top levels of audio compression and EQ on Beck’s voice (say nothing of the half-dozen or so Beck sound-alikes who also occupy his studio) will absolutely blow out your speakers.

Most radio stations employ some sort of digital processing to make the host or disc jockey sound more resonant, but I’ve never heard a talk show with this much compression. Clearly, the BOOM! is there to enhance Beck’s voice in a way that augments his level of psychological persuasion — the deeper, diaphragm-vibrating low end increases the physical connection between Beck and his audience. A more subconscious aspect of his scam.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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The overarching theme of this monologue is that God is speaking directly to Glenn Beck and giving him the plan. It’s classic televangelism, which is commonly seen as nothing more than an exploitation of religious naiveté with the goal of making the televangelist rich. Listen to me. I have the answers. Because God is speaking to me. So give generously if you want to hear what God’s plan is.

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Local Tea Party Leader Who Suggested Shooting Hispanics Now Is Wanted By Cops — Tweets: ‘Arm Yourself’

TPM MUCKRAKER

Zachary Roth | April 14, 2010, 3:35PM

Police are searching for a local Tea Party leader in Ohio who is wanted for violating a temporary protection order. Meanwhile, speakers at a Tea Party rally organized by the man, Brian “Sonny” Thomas, have pulled out after he suggested in a tweet that he wanted to shoot Hispanic immigrants — then blaming it on a Bee Gees song.

Thomas is the founder and president of the Springboro Tea Party in southwest Ohio. He faces a misdemeanor charge after recently going to the home of the mother of his son, in violation of a protection order. The woman had previously told police that their son had returned from Thomas’s home with bruises.

Thomas had already been in hot water, after he tweeted during a march in support of immigration reform: “Illegals everywhere today! So many spicks makes me feel like a speck. Grr. Where’s my gun?”

Thomas’s son, and the son’s mother, are Hispanic.

Thomas denied to the Dayton Daily News that he had ever bruised his son. He also said that his anger was focused on illegal immigrants, not legal American citizens like his son.

Thomas has written on his website that the tweet was “facetious.” He also explained it to CNN yesterday by saying that he had been listening to the Bee Gees song “Spicks and Specks.” “I made the reference to the song, not stopping to think of the era that it was produced from and taken out of context could be so offensive to some people,” he said.

The Bee Gees song is not about race. It contains the line: “Where are the girls I left all behind, the spicks and the specks of the girls on my mind?”

In response to the tweet, several local Ohio pols, including former congressman Jim Traficant, announced that they would not participate in a Tea Party rally that Thomas has been planning to mark Tax Day.

The tweet wasn’t the first evidence that Thomas may be unusually preoccupied with race. Among the links to the Springboro Tea Party site is one to a site called white-pride.org, which sells t-shirts expressing pride in various European ancestries. CNN found a picture on Thomas’s MySpace page — no longer available — of him wearing a “white pride” t-shirt. The “White Pride” slogan is frequently used by white supremacists and neo-Nazis.

As police searched for him yesterday, Thomas tweeted: “Did You Know There are Over 300 Fema Concentration Camps in The United States”. He linked to an extremist website telling readers to “resist the new world order.” He also tweeted: “Professionals advise ‘Arm yourself’ When Seconds Count – Cops are minutes away.”

The controversy over Thomas comes at a time when the Tea Party movement is seeking to present a more mainstream and less controversial image to the public. A group of Tea Partiers recently announced a new federation, designed in part to fight back against charges of racism and extremism.

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So here goes. Beginning with this post, I intend to expose Glenn Beck as a fraud. A dangerous faker who deliberately manipulates his audience by appealing to their basest instincts. As a man who only embraces conservatism and the tea party movement as a means to furthering his significant personal wealth and career as a successful TV goon.

My theory is as follows. Glenn Beck is engaged in a carefully orchestrated performance that, if taken to its logical end, can only end up in tragedy — a tragedy, not in the name of some great political or social or religious cause, as too many of his viewers might believe, but rather in the name of pure careerism and greed. A tragedy in the name of Glenn Beck’s personal drive for fame and fortune, not to mention the similar motivations of Roger Ailes and Rupert Murdoch.

Right. I get it. I should probably ignore him. Why should I waste time writing about Glenn Beck again? As hard as it is to believe, most days I intentionally ignore Glenn Beck posts and videos on the blogs. My reoccurring reaction is generally twofold. One: he’s exhausting to watch because just as I’m wrapping my head around one line of googly-eyed horseshit, he belts out another ridiculous, melodramatic or dangerous line, and before I know it, I’m faced with a log-jam of crazy, forcing me to scramble for either an oxygen mask or a stiff drink. And, two: why pay attention to the television equivalent of an escaped mental patient screaming gibberish on the median strip at a busy intersection?

But to underestimate Glenn Beck as just some sort of random extra from Cuckoo’s Nest, as I admittedly have done, is a mistake as it barely scratches the surface of what his scam is all about. A schizoid raving street loon tends to command attention purely for the freak show curiosity of passers by, yet the nonsense is rarely taken seriously.

This isn’t the case with Glenn Beck. Several million people every day take his word for it. They’re suckered into buying the ruse. And it’s bad for America.

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"Pale Horse" (left), seen in an Ohio Militia video

Accused Christian Militia Member Posted Video Last Year: ‘I’m Just A Simple Militant … What’s Wrong With That?’

TPM MUCKRAKER

Zachary Roth | March 29, 2010, 2:37PM

We already told you that one of the members of a Christian militia group charged today with “seditious conspiracy” in connection to an alleged plot to kill law enforcement appears to be the extremist who over the last 18 months created widely-viewed videos that warn “our country is in peril” and urge people to take up arms and march on Washington. And it now appears that that same militia member — Kristopher Sickles, who goes by the name of “Pale Horse” — posted a third video in which he lambasted the “corporate media” for its coverage of the militia movement.

The video, posted last August to YouTube and still available, sheds further light on the mindset and philosophy of at least one of the nine Hutaree members accused today of conspiring to kill police officers, then bomb their funeral in a bid to kill more law enforcement personnel, as part of a plot to “oppose by force the authority of the U.S. government.”

“Pale Horse” — identifying himself as a member of the Ohio Militia, and with his face and voice disguised — argues in the August video that the recent media coverage of the militia movement, including of his own earlier videos, suggests that the government, with the help of the mainstream media, is preparing to target his group. “It seems like they’re mounting an attack,” he says. “We’re all over the news. They’re putting us in a bad light. Who have we threatened?”

Later he says: “They’re stamping us all over the media. Clearly they have some plan in mind.”

Pale Horse also rebuts charges of racism advanced in some of the news coverage. “It has nothing to do with the fact that we have a black president,” he insists. “I started my group several years ago when Bush was in office.”

And at one point he cites Alex Jones, the conspiracy-minded radio host, as a comrade-in-arms.

Pale Horse closes with this defense: “I myself have never made any threats or claims against anyone,” he says. “I’m just a simple militant and I just want to protect my family. What’s wrong with that?”

And he adds: “You people need to read between the lines. You’re being lied to by the corporate media.”

Watch:

As we’ve explained, the Hutaree are an explicitly Christian militia group, based predominantly in Michigan, which says its preparing for the arrival of the Anti-Christ. Pale Horse’s video, by contrast, never mentions religious motivations.

It’s unclear exactly when and how Pale Horse began working with the Hutaree, though in one his earlier YouTube videos, posted last April, he referred to training at a Michigan Militia site.

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