It was a weekend for the breaking of records.
The latest addition to the Great Franchise -- Star Wars: The Force Awakens -- beat everything in sight by echoing and supersizing everything you liked about the original.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens beat every box office recordIn the end, even the dinosaurs were no match for a universe far, far away.Star Wars: The Force Awakens is officially a record-breaking hit, raking in at least $247 million in its opening weekend. To put that in perspective, The Force Awakens crushed Jurassic World's record-breaking $208.8 million opening weekend from this summer, and set a December opening record by tripling The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey's December 2012 opening of $84.6 million, according to Variety...
And the front-runner for the nomination of the Grand Old Party -- Donald J. Trump -- so dominated the race for Lie of the Year that the good people at PolitiFact awarded his campaign both ears and a tail for belligerently doubling down on one debunked wingnut fairy tale after another:
...Trump has "perfected the outrageous untruth as a campaign tool," said Michael LaBossiere, a philosophy professor at Florida A&M University who studies theories of knowledge. "He makes a clearly false or even absurdly false claim, which draws the attention of the media. He then rides that wave until it comes time to call up another one."PolitiFact has been documenting Trump’s statements on our Truth-O-Meter, where we’ve rated 76 percent of them Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire, out of 77 statements checked. No other politician has as many statements rated so far down on the dial.In considering our annual Lie of the Year, we found our only real contenders were Trump’s -- his various statements also led our Readers’ Poll. But it was hard to single one out from the others. So we have rolled them into one big trophy...
You might recall that way back in June, while all the Beltway's most respectable Very Serious People were have a good ol' respectable larf over the sudden-but-nothing-to-worry-about ascendancy of The-Breitbart-Comment-Section-That-Walks-Like-A-Man, down in democracy's steerage section, a few of America's remaining disreputable, vituperative, foul-mouthed bloggers of the Left were taking Mr. Trump very seriously:
...And ever since, the Fight on the Right has gone exactly where I predicted it would go -- a knife fight atop Wingnut Olympus over who will get control over Conservatism's greatest and most toxic asset: those millions and millions of paranoid, hate-fed chumps upon whose shoulders rests the fate and fortunes of the oligarchs and fascists at the top.
In case you missed it, Squint and the Meat Puppet handed the MSNBC camera over to Donald Trump this morning for a relaxing, 30-minute handjob. While Trump rambled lazily from one pinnacle of bullshit and narcissism to the next, Morning Joe crack house regulars Mark Halperin (Glenn Beck's favorite mainstream media enabler) and the pickled remains of Mike Barnacle looked on, smirking and giggling. All that it lacked to complete the creepy, peep-show effect were trench-coats and bad lighting.But of course, the story of the Trump candidacy has very little to do with Donald Trump.As I wrote a few years ago,the brain-caste of the GOP spent a 40 years and billions of dollars carefully breeding an army of reliably angry, paranoid, racists chumps. And they have been so successful at completely re-engineering the Right's ideological digestive system that they can no longer process any information which does not come to them in the form of Fox-approved Benghaaaazi goo.
In other words, in order to win elections and rake in vast fortunes, the Conservative brain caste has painstakingly created the perfect feeding-ground for con men and demagogues like Trump, the louder and more bombastic the better. And from David Brooks and the Wall Street Journal and "Meet the Press", to Ann Coulter and the Washington Free Beacon and the Breitbart Collective, in one way or another, virtually everyone in the media makes bank by flattering Conservative meatheads and pandering to their delusions.They are the GOP's premium leads, but however abundant and renewable a resource the Conservative meatheads may be, come Presidential election time, there is never enough room at the trough for every rapacious Republican hog. This is why every few years we have these Little Red State Fundy moments; that delicate time when the knives come out and the various species of Conservative con men start cutting each other's balls over who gets to pluck the wingnut pigeons......while trying desperately not to call attention to the fact that their entire political system depends on pandering to the army of reliably angry, paranoid, racists chumps which the GOP has worked so long and hard to cultivate.Fortunately for the Right, now that the "respectable" media has as much to lose by cracking out of turn as Hate Radio and Fox News, we can all look forward to another campaign season of the American mainstream media looking stoically the other way.