Rupert Murdoch said that it was “bullshit” that Fox promoted the Tea Party.
Rupert Murdoch said that it was “bullshit” that Fox promoted the Tea Party.
We’ve gotten a rather ferocious response to my noting last night that when we interviewed accused Kansas City Jewish Center Shooter Glenn Miller two years ago his two big questions for our reporter Ryan Reilly was whether Ryan was Jewish and whether Ryan thought Ron Paul was being mistreated by the mainstream media. Now, obviously people can’t be responsible for the bad acts of people who might happen to like them. And more specifically to this case, Paul has never been a mainstream Republican. Mainstream Republicans have frequently tried to marginalize him - mainly because of his heterodox foreign policy views but also because of his obscurantist anti-Fed beliefs on monetary. But not least of which has been the reality, not lost on mainstream Republicans, that Paul has a pretty well-documented history as a leading figure among white nationalists and pretty clear ties to open anti-Semites.
Interesting notes from Josh Marshall, but I must take issue with this comment:
"Personally, I have to say that it’s always been difficult for me to square this history (of Ron Paul) with the kindly old guy many of us got to know in recent years."
This is actually a summation of the entire conservative view that “nice” people can’t be racists, or that only outwardly vicious people can be called such. It’s problematic and wrong, and it’s more than a little naïve.
Let me tell you about my grandfather. He was a burly hard-working man with a close black friend that his children considered an uncle. His favorite musician was Louis Armstrong. He cried whenever we left his house to drive home, because he would miss us so. He cooked Sunday dinner for three (and often four) generations almost every week. At least six of the nurses from his the hospital where he died attended his funeral after becoming so attached to him there. He was one of the sweetest and toughest men you can imagine.
But he was a racist. He subscribed to white power newsletters that terrified me when I found several hidden away as a child. The hatred in them was shocking and horrible. He would always resist saying an unkind word toward anyone, black or white, but he had strong opinions about how society was supposed to be ordered.
He was a “kindly old guy,” and most of my Republican family would be furious with me for calling him a racist, because he gave food and clothing to poor black and white families when he could, he worked with and hired black men and women. He didn’t attack anyone, he wasn’t vicious, and I loved him. He didn’t firebomb houses either, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t a racist.
But my grandfather also didn’t publish “endless articles taking about mooching black ‘animals’, impending race wars and embattled whites and not dissimilar stuff about Jews,” as Ron Paul so clearly and infamously did for such a long time.
Ron Paul may come across to some people today as a “kindly older man.” But he is indisputably racist and his views have been destructive to us as a society.
His newsletter gave comfort to and encouraged violent bigots all over the country, and he has never repudiated them, only expressed some vague notion that he didn’t write all the articles.
He and his supporters should be extremely concerned (I’d say “horrified”) that he bears some responsibility for the Kansas City Jewish Center tragedy and others like it. Based on the “ferocious” defensive response, it seems that his supporters may very well be.
Update— Response from Josh Marshall:
I think you’re imputing more naiviete than is there. I’m the one who wrote that and other numerous articles saying Paul’s a racist. What I was referring to was more cognitive dissonance. Still, I take your point.
Thanks for the response.
To be honest, I think the “nice guy” argument is one of my all-time pet peeves, and I sort of went off on it.
I think he is absolutely right about cognitive dissonance playing a tremendous role in what I described as naivete, and not only for him. Most likely, that is why it’s so hard to move beyond it and why we see such visceral reactions to being called a bigot.
Fox News analyst Brit Hume lamented with host Bill O’Reilly on Monday night that white people can’t complain about a black President anymore without being labeled as racists.
I love these whinefests from right-wing white conservatives, I really do.
They show just how much these guys are getting wrong about public opinion, and how much they misunderstand people in general. They suggest that these media personalities will keep deluding Republicans into losing more elections.
Just as they truly thought that Romney would win despite the polling, they genuinely believe that liberals are more likely to vote for a black candidate. That’s ludicrous on its face, but it tells us that they will also continue to fully underestimate people like Barack Obama, just as they have even after his election.
"You know, it’s — this is a tough question to pose. But if Barack Obama had been a young white senator from Illinois, I think probably Hillary Clinton would have defeated him. Is that unfair to say?" O’Reilly asked.
Um, no Bill, he still would have won. He had the electoral strategy down and she didn’t. He articulated a clear vision and she didn’t. He didn’t give us Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton fatigue. Many of us were predicting the chances of his nomination even before he announced his candidacy, before he even had a large public following, based simply on his vision of America and his ability to rally people into sharing it. No other candidate had that.
At that time, my colleagues and I thought he may be nominated, but only if Democrats could put aside fears of “electability” that dominated the Kerry campaign. I wasn’t sure that they could. Not just because he was African-American, but he was a professor, not super-wealthy, and had a non-Anglo name.
So why didn’t Edwards win instead (as O’Reilly seems to be suggesting)? People simply didn’t trust him, fortunately. I liked what he said in the campaign, but I never bought the idea that he could rally people around him. Frankly I didn’t fully understand why he gave a bad vibe to so many voters, but he did, and it appears they were right.
I shouldn’t love this segment, I really shouldn’t. Hume and O’Reilly are articulating their disbelief in the qualifications of all black candidates by dismissing their qualifications and appeal. They are saying that only through an unfair advantage can a black candidate ever win. And yes, that’s racist, whether they are conscious of it or not. It’s painful to watch and it’s insulting.
But what Hume and O’Reilly clearly demonstrate is that being racist isn’t simply stupid, but it makes you blind to your own stupidity.
And that’s why I love these whinefests.
Apparently it’s only a “dictatorship” when it’s not what you want. Republican logic is on par with a 5 year old.
Plus Congress can overrule or defund ANY Executive Order i.e. Gitmo Closing.
We’re a violent people.
Sometimes I try to convince myself that we aren’t, and that we are no more predisposed to kill, to seek vengeance, to attack or invade, to use lethal force than others, but it isn’t true. It clearly isn’t true.
Centuries of genocide and slavery leave a lasting effect. A few generations are no match for that deep imprint.
We can honor the good, or try to, but the powerful still write our history and set our culture.
But these are the people I love and the culture I know. All I can do keep my voice steady, keep doing the best I can, keep working to win over hearts and minds, keep trying to end the fear and the deranged justifications that accompany it.
We have all heard people claiming to be “moderate” Republicans, who say that most of what we hear on the news is from the radicals.
So, we decided to take a look at the actual party positions, as found in the most recent Republican Party platform (pdf). If you think the only Republican ideas are cutting government and taxes and privatizing everything, well there’s a bit more than that in there.
In fact, as the first line of the document says, “The 2012 Republican Platform is a statement of who we are and what we believe as a Party and our vision for a stronger and freer America.”
Our understanding of each section’s salient points are listed below. While it may be slightly dated, since it was drafted specifically for the Republican Convention in 2012, I am not aware of any shift in official Republican goals, or of any update. And while it may have made more sense to publish this summary when it was first released, it seems to be worth reminding people of just what is in it today.
Like the original document, this is a series of six parts, as follows:
Our goal here is to cut through the wording in many cases in order to refer back to the actual issues that the statements reference. The original document is fairly readable, and we encourage you to download it for yourself and read along.
Please share your comments with us if we have missed important statements, or if you disagree with our interpretations.
Pat Robertson is either drinking heavily before each broadcast, swilling a ton of prescription pills or hitting his head with a hammer. Because if not, he’s a very sick man and needs a long rest someplace.
Pat Robertson today asked God to “deliver” the US from President Obama before it’s too late. After implying that Obama is a Muslim, Robertson told 700 Club viewers: “We need to do something to pray to be delivered from this president. He is a disaster, an absolute disaster. Democrat, Republican or whatever, this country is into serious decline unless something dramatic is done about it.”
While promoting a Christian Broadcasting Network booklet, “Islam: Religion of Peace or War?,” Robertson suggested Obama professed faith in Islam during a 2012 address to the UN General Assembly where he said that “the future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.” In fact, Obama’s speech focused on protecting the freedom of speech and religion, and Robertson conveniently omits the president’s next line: “To be credible, those who condemn that slander must also condemn the hate we see in the images of Jesus Christ that are desecrated, or churches that are destroyed, or the Holocaust that is denied.”
A big U.S. social insurance program is enacted into law – only to face delays and fierce controversies. Regulations are imposed on businesses and taxes collected well before citizens get sizable benefits. Right-wingers fight for repeal or evisceration, and many on the left are also disgruntled. Outright failure remains possible for years after enactment. Obamacare? No, we’re talking about the early life of the program called Social Security, now hugely popular and regarded as virtually untouchable politically.
I like this article, I really do, but it includes an egregious liberal misunderstanding of current politics. I don’t know if this is beltway/coastal myopia or what exactly, but it’s pernicious and leads to complacency among moderates and the left.
"Social Security (is)… now hugely popular and regarded as virtually untouchable politically."
Yes, it’s hugely popular, and yes it’s called the third rail of politics, but Social Security is constantly attacked from the right and is still in very real danger of elimination.
Republicans understand that it is likely not feasible to repeal the program outright by vote, but have worked for decades at a backdoor repeal via judicial appointment.
One of the consistent requirements for Republican approval of Federal judges (and especially justices) has been their advocacy for defined limits on federal power not specifically granted in the Constitution. The other is the dismissal of court precedents, and an embrace of re-considering settled law under the guise of “Originalism.”
Both of those tenets have long been integral to the drive to have Social Security declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Even Reagan opposed the plan, and his nomination of Robert Bork made that clear. In fact, Bork and Edwin Meese were the main forces in popularizing this approach to the issue.
That drive hasn’t slowed or stopped, and with the five conservatives on the Court today, it may be more likely than ever.
Antonin Scalia, John Roberts, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito have all been members of the Federalist Society, which was founded in order to push for those federal limits and “Originalist” philosophies. Robert Bork, one of the Society’s founders, was considered too extreme to be nominated, but membership today is practically required in order to gain Republican approval.
While I agree that Obamacare will become just as important and beloved as Social Security, that does not mean either program is safe from repeal, or even here to stay.
In recent decades, the court has protected the nation from many bad laws, but the definition of “unconstitutional” has changed dramatically since Bush’s appointees took the bench. They will be “protecting” us from very different ones going forward.
Sometimes people ask me whether I’m just making up the pro-gun position that I occasionally discuss on this blog (and that I tend to refer to as wingnuttery). I assure you I am not.
The above is the tail end of a conversation with someone who found my blog via the Washington Post and wanted to argue with me about whether or not Florida’s Stand Your Ground law constitutes an example of self-defense as an inalienable right found all the way back in the philosophy of Locke and Blackstone. [You can find the whole discussion here if you want to see how he arrives at this nonsensical position.]
Does Locke think you are justified in defending yourself if someone attacks you and there’s no other way for you to preserve yourself? He does. But, if at all possible, it would be better to let the proper authorities handle the matter; one of the main points of having a civil society is that it precludes every man from being judge, jury, and executioner. Locke suggests this over and over again.
Does Locke thinks you have a right to wander around with a weapon looking for trouble and then claim self-defense when you kill someone you’ve been following around for no good reason? No, sir; that’s utter madness. The only ones who think this way are people who like the idea of waving guns around to make themselves feel like big men.
Two things stunning about this post:
1. That someone truly believes that’s stalkers have the right to terrify and kill their victims, and tries to use Locke to justify it.
2. That anyone ELSE doesn’t understand or believe that this a common gun nut argument. It is.
Get out and smell the crazy, people. It is all around us.
Let’s do this!
No, “Christians” as a whole are NOT demanding equal time on Cosmos. Stop trying to cast the show as anti-Christian for amusement.
It isn’t, except to the very vocal fundamentalist 20-percenters.
These graphics may be funny, but they reinforce the conviction that there really is some sort of irreconcilable conflict, and that gives fundamentalists even more influence.
She probably a liberal
It is a well-known fact that liberals tend to dislike spicy Thai food.
Curious, are the Tweets part of the satire?
I wish they were.
I stopped sharing Onion articles on FB because of comments like these.
(Source: The Onion)
True, and it has to be on purpose.
I think maybe we should add these terms to the Truthdogg Glossary. I hadn’t thought about doing that before!
The Truthdogg Tumblr Glossary is pretty awesome. It’s like a Fox News-to-English dictionary.
Thanks! And please let us know if we’re missing some key words and phrases.
It’s time for another Republican goon-squad myth intervention.It’s time for another Republican goon-squad myth intervention.
I spend a lot of time debunking various myths, slogans and lies, and the undisputed champion of easily debunkable myths continues to be the Republican Party. But, until now, I don’t think I’ve ever fully summarized the most glaring examples of GOP myths and lies. To be sure, this isn’t to suggest that all Republicans are easily-misled simpletons. They’re not. Yet their party consistently panders to its easily-misled simpleton base with the most egregiously dishonest ideas in American politics.
I hasten to note that this list obviously doesn’t cover everything and I’m sure you’ll have some additional examples for the comments below. But the following are definitely the 10 most mendacious things the GOP has attempted to foist upon the American public.
10) Obama Doubled the Deficit.
This was a favorite of the Mitt Romney campaign. Throughout 2012, Romney repeatedly said, “The president promised to cut the deficit in half. He’s doubled it!” No. No he hasn’t. First of all, this line depends entirely on voters not understanding the difference between the deficit and the debt. See previous “simpleton” remarks. Indeed, the president has absolutely cut the deficit by way more than half in his first five years. When he took office, the deficit for 2009 was projected to be $1.4 trillion. The deficit at the end of 2014 will be $514 billion, just three percent of GDP. That’s a nearly $1 trillion reduction in five years. Not only that, but the administration boasts the lowest year-over-year increase in government spending since Truman, and it’ll be one of just three administrations in the last 50 years that will have ended with a lower deficit than when it began. The last Republican do leave the White House with the same record was Eisenhower.
9) Man-Made Climate Change Is a Hoax.
According to a clearly liberal agency called “NASA,” a full 97 percent of scientists with specific expertise in climate science agree that climate change is real and humans are causing it. We shouldn’t really have to say anything else. Of course if you’re Lloyd Christmas from Dumb & Dumber, and “one-in-a-million” means “there’s a chance,” then the three percent of scientists who aren’t sure about climate change obviously indicates that it’s a hoax.
8) Cold Weather Disproves Climate Change
Second in our trifecta of climate change myths is an annual favorite. Every time it snows, you know the drill. Whenever there’s a snow storm everyone from Matt Drudge to Rush Limbaugh suddenly achieves nipple erections hard enough to cut glass. And out comes the myth that climate change can’t possibly be real because it’s snowing somewhere. What they fail to explain to their disciples is that New York City or Minnesota or Washington, D.C., isn’t, you know, the globe. Climate scientists base their global warming observations on global temperature averages. So while it might be snowing outside Sean Hannity’s house, average temperatures year-over-year are growing progressively higher.
7) Tax Cuts Do More to Stimulate The Economy Than Food Stamps and Unemployment Benefits.
- Every dollar spent on unemployment benefits generates 1.61 in economic growth.
- Every dollar spent on food stamps generates 1.74 in economic growth.
- But every dollar spent on rolling tax rates back to Bush-era levels only creates .32 in economic growth — that’s a 68-cent loss on investment.
6) Cars Kill a Lot of People and No One Wants to Ban Them Like Guns!
Unlike firearms, cars aren’t explicitly designed to kill or wound living beings (humans, animals, etc). They’re designed to move you from one place to another. Yet unlike firearms, cars and drivers are heavily regulated by the government, from emissions standards to annual inspections to safety features, and so forth. You can’t legally drive a car that doesn’t feature seatbelts, or a car that spews too much exhaust into the air. You have to take both a written and a behind-the-wheel test to get a license to operate a car. You often have to renew that license at regular intervals and, if you’re older, you have to prove that you’re physically capable of driving a car. You can’t drive a car while drinking alcohol or impaired by other chemicals. There are thousands of police officers patrolling our roads and, as most of us have experienced at one time or another, they will penalize or arrest you for improper handling of a car — with literally hundreds of laws to abide, and considerable penalties, ranging from fines to imprisonment to the government stripping you of your right to drive a car at all. So if the NRA and its supporters are going to keep using this car analogy, then let’s talk about regulating guns and gun owners the same way we regulate cars and drivers.
5) The Affordable Care Act Covers Abortion-Inducing Emergency Contraception.
Admittedly, there are so many Obamacare myths to choose from: death panels, IRS goon squads raiding homes, it’s a “job killing” law, it’s a “government takeover,” etc. It’s all a pile of hooey and definitely worth mentioning here. But this lie about emergency contraception coverage is so insidious that it even managed fool some liberals. Contrary to lawsuits by various religious businesses and organizations, the various forms of emergency contraception covered by the law do not, in fact, block implantation of a fertilized egg. If these medications were indeed abortifacients, they wouldn’t be covered because it’s illegal for the government to do so. But they’re not abortifacients, so they’re covered. Simply put: while some emergency contraception blocks implantation, the emergency contraception that’s covered in the law blocksovulation — not implantation. Of course that won’t stop the lawsuits or likely factor into the opinions of perhaps five Supreme Court justices when the first major Obamacare contraception decision drops this Summer.
Okay, just stop it with this. No, the Obama campaign wasn’t handing out free phones in exchange for votes. However, there’s definitely a program that offers low-cost telephones to citizens who can’t afford one. The truth is the Lifeline program has been around since 1984 when, that’s right, Ronald Reagan helped to create it. In 1996, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) set up a non-profit outfit called the Universal Service Administrative Company, which receives financial backing via the Universal Service Fund. According to its website, money for the program is contributed entirely by “long distance companies, local telephone companies, wireless telephone companies, paging companies, and payphone providers,” and none of the funding comes from taxpayers via the federal government. It’s all privately donated money.
3) It’s Safer to Have a Gun in the House, or a Concealed Weapon on Your Person.
I’m going to step aside and let an actual Republican debunk this one. Here’s David Frum:
A gun in the house minimally doubles the risk that a household member will kill himself or herself. (Some studies put the increase in suicide risk as high as 10 times.) An American is 50 percent more likely to be shot dead by his or her own handthan to be shot dead by a criminal assailant. More than 30,000 Americans injure themselves with guns every year.
2) Exhaling Releases “Dangerous” CO2.
This is so dumb, it easily ranks as the most ridiculous climate change lie. Yes, more ridiculous than the blizzard thing. It’s truly astonishing that anyone with half-a-brain actually believes it. Speaking of half-a-brain, here are some prime offenders:
"Carbon dioxide is basically this. (Exhales.) Look at how much pollution I just put out."
"We exhale CO2. If were a poison, it wouldn’t be part of the way we stay alive."
"Carbon dioxide is a natural byproduct of nature."
"Now I know there is also a movement to say that carbon dioxide should be guided or should be managed by the Environmental Protection Agency. I disagree with that. I exhale carbon dioxide. I don’t want those guys following me around with a meter to see if I’m breathing too hard."
The stupidity is, pardon the pun, breathtaking. On the surface, this “exhaling” silliness sounds like it might be true — if you’re really into uneducated, simplistic explanations for very complex topics. Not only does human breathing not even makethe list of greenhouse gases but, chiefly, the ecosystem wasn’t designed to scrub out unprecedented levels of CO2 released by the burning of fossil fuels. Therefore all of that excessive CO2 is just lingering in the atmosphere, trapping heat and scrambling our weather patterns.
1) Voter Fraud Is a Serious Issue That Requires Strict New Voter ID Laws.
Nope. Not even close. Once again, this falls into the Lloyd Christmas category. Successful prosecutions of voter fraud cases barely amount to one one-hundredth of one percent of total votes cast in a single general election. In Ohio, for example, Secretary of State Jon Husted ballyhooed his war against fraud by nabbing a whopping 20 potential cases. 20 out of nearly six million votes cast in that state in 2012. The Bush Justice Department found that there were as few as 80 successful prosecutions of voter fraud cases out of hundreds of millions of votes cast since 2000. For this ratio of possible-fraud-to-votes-cast we’re told we need laws that make it more difficult to vote. By the way, some Republicans came right out and said it: this isall about electing Republicans.
That’s it. It’s of course foolish to think the Republicans will drop these lies and myths any time soon. But as long as various Republicans continue to repeat these transparently obvious falsehoods, they should expect that the rest of us will continue to think they’re either idiots or that they’re deliberately trying to deceive their own people — or maybe a little of both.
Preface: This handy set of rules covers most of the games which disinformation artists play on the Internet (and offline). When you know the tricks, you’ll be able to spot the games. Even if you’ve read this list before, you might be surprised at how useful it is to brush up on these tricks.
1. Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. Regardless of what you know, don’t discuss it — especially if you are a public figure, news anchor, etc. If it’s not reported, it didn’t happen, and you never have to deal with the issues.
2. Become incredulous and indignant. Avoid discussing key issues and instead focus on side issues which can be used show the topic as being critical of some otherwise sacrosanct group or theme. This is also known as the “How dare you!” gambit.
3. Create rumor mongers. Avoid discussing issues by describing all charges, regardless of venue or evidence, as mere rumors and wild accusations. Other derogatory terms mutually exclusive of truth may work as well. This method works especially well with a silent press, because the only way the public can learn of the facts are through such “arguable rumors”. If you can associate the material with the Internet, use this fact to certify it a “wild rumor” which can have no basis in fact.
4. Use a straw man. Find or create a seeming element of your opponent’s argument which you can easily knock down to make yourself look good and the opponent to look bad. Either make up an issue you may safely imply exists based on your interpretation of the opponent/opponent arguments/situation, or select the weakest aspect of the weakest charges. Amplify their significance and destroy them in a way which appears to debunk all the charges, real and fabricated alike, while actually avoiding discussion of the real issues.
5. Sidetrack opponents with name calling and ridicule. This is also known as the primary attack the messenger ploy, though other methods qualify as variants of that approach. Associate opponents with unpopular titles such as “kooks”, “right-wing”, “liberal”, “left-wing”, “terrorists”, “conspiracy buffs”, “radicals”, “militia”, “racists”, “religious fanatics”, “sexual deviates”, and so forth. This makes others shrink from support out of fear of gaining the same label, and you avoid dealing with issues.
6. Hit and Run. In any public forum, make a brief attack of your opponent or the opponent position and then scamper off before an answer can be fielded, or simply ignore any answer. This works extremely well in Internet and letters-to-the-editor environments where a steady stream of new identities can be called upon without having to explain criticism reasoning — simply make an accusation or other attack, never discussing issues, and never answering any subsequent response, for that would dignify the opponent’s viewpoint.
7. Question motives. Twist or amplify any fact which could so taken to imply that the opponent operates out of a hidden personal agenda or other bias. This avoids discussing issues and forces the accuser on the defensive.
8. Invoke authority. Claim for yourself or associate yourself with authority and present your argument with enough “jargon” and “minutiae” to illustrate you are “one who knows”, and simply say it isn’t so without discussing issues or demonstrating concretely why or citing sources.
9. Play Dumb. No matter what evidence or logical argument is offered, avoid discussing issues with denial they have any credibility, make any sense, provide any proof, contain or make a point, have logic, or support a conclusion. Mix well for maximum effect.
10. Associate opponent charges with old news. A derivative of the straw man usually, in any large-scale matter of high visibility, someone will make charges early on which can be or were already easily dealt with. Where it can be foreseen, have your own side raise a straw man issue and have it dealt with early on as part of the initial contingency plans. Subsequent charges, regardless of validity or new ground uncovered, can usually them be associated with the original charge and dismissed as simply being a rehash without need to address current issues — so much the better where the opponent is or was involved with the original source.
11. Establish and rely upon fall-back positions. Using a minor matter or element of the facts, take the “high road” and “confess” with candor that some innocent mistake, in hindsight, was made — but that opponents have seized on the opportunity to blow it all out of proportion and imply greater criminalities which, “just isn’t so.” Others can reinforce this on your behalf, later. Done properly, this can garner sympathy and respect for “coming clean” and “owning up” to your mistakes without addressing more serious issues.
12. Enigmas have no solution. Drawing upon the overall umbrella of events surrounding the crime and the multitude of players and events, paint the entire affair as too complex to solve. This causes those otherwise following the matter to begin to loose interest more quickly without having to address the actual issues.
13. Alice in Wonderland Logic. Avoid discussion of the issues by reasoning backwards with an apparent deductive logic in a way that forbears any actual material fact.
14. Demand complete solutions. Avoid the issues by requiring opponents to solve the crime at hand completely, a ploy which works best for items qualifying for rule 10.
15. Fit the facts to alternate conclusions. This requires creative thinking unless the crime was planned with contingency conclusions in place.
16. Vanishing evidence and witnesses. If it does not exist, it is not fact, and you won’t have to address the issue.
17. Change the subject. Usually in connection with one of the other ploys listed here, find a way to side-track the discussion with abrasive or controversial comments in hopes of turning attention to a new, more manageable topic. This works especially well with companions who can “argue” with you over the new topic and polarize the discussion arena in order to avoid discussing more key issues.
18. Emotionalize, Antagonize, and Goad Opponents. If you can’t do anything else, chide and taunt your opponents and draw them into emotional responses which will tend to make them look foolish and overly motivated, and generally render their material somewhat less coherent. Not only will you avoid discussing the issues in the first instance, but even if their emotional response addresses the issue, you can further avoid the issues by then focusing on how “sensitive they are to criticism”.
19. Ignore proof presented, demand impossible proofs. This is perhaps a variant of the “play dumb” rule. Regardless of what material may be presented by an opponent in public forums, claim the material irrelevant and demand proof that is impossible for the opponent to come by (it may exist, but not be at his disposal, or it may be something which is known to be safely destroyed or withheld, such as a murder weapon). In order to completely avoid discussing issues may require you to categorically deny and be critical of media or books as valid sources, deny that witnesses are acceptable, or even deny that statements made by government or other authorities have any meaning or relevance.
20. False evidence. Whenever possible, introduce new facts or clues designed and manufactured to conflict with opponent presentations as useful tools to neutralize sensitive issues or impede resolution. This works best when the crime was designed with contingencies for the purpose, and the facts cannot be easily separated from the fabrications.
21. Call a Grand Jury, Special Prosecutor, or other empowered investigative body. Subvert the (process) to your benefit and effectively neutralize all sensitive issues without open discussion. Once convened, the evidence and testimony are required to be secret when properly handled. For instance, if you own the prosecuting attorney, it can insure a Grand Jury hears no useful evidence and that the evidence is sealed an unavailable to subsequent investigators. Once a favorable verdict (usually, this technique is applied to find the guilty innocent, but it can also be used to obtain charges when seeking to frame a victim) is achieved, the matter can be considered officially closed.
22. Manufacture a new truth. Create your own expert(s), group(s), author(s), leader(s) or influence existing ones willing to forge new ground via scientific, investigative, or social research or testimony which concludes favorably. In this way, if you must actually address issues, you can do so authoritatively.
23. Create bigger distractions. If the above does not seem to be working to distract from sensitive issues, or to prevent unwanted media coverage of unstoppable events such as trials, create bigger news stories (or treat them as such) to distract the multitudes.
24. Silence critics. If the above methods do not prevail, consider removing opponents from circulation by some definitive solution so that the need to address issues is removed entirely. This can be by their death, arrest and detention, blackmail or destruction of their character by release of blackmail information, or merely by proper intimidation with blackmail or other threats.
25. Vanish. If you are a key holder of secrets or otherwise overly illuminated and you think the heat is getting too hot, to avoid the issues, vacate the kitchen.
Postscript: I don’t know who wrote these rules, so I don’t know who to credit. Washington’s Blog