RachelWatch: A Conspiracy that Will Blow Your Mind


Today: Ana Marie Cox, John McCain’s ridiculous DADT letter, and a pitch-perfect takedown of Liz Cheney.

Are you sure you’re properly prepared to deal with the latest episode of The Rachel Maddow Show? You might need to go get a bigger bag to handle all the awesome.

No, bigger than that. Trust me. I’ll wait.

Bart Stupak’s 15 Minutes of Fame

Rachel started us off with a look at Representative Bart Stupak (D – Michigan), who has been getting into the news an awful lot by holding up health care reform with his principled stand against abortion.

Well, principled except for the part where he and his staff routinely lie about what the Hyde amendment does and what the Stupak-Pitts amendment would do.

But still, strong, pro-life principles, Assuming you ignore the 45,000 people who die each year for lack of health insurance, which Stupak might stop them from getting.

(And, while this has little to do with principles, I feel compelled to mention that his staff still does not exhibit even a shred of humor when you call up Stupak’s office to update him on your uterus.)

Rachel noticed that Stupak’s amendment isn’t the only thing he’s evasive about. He says he just rented a room at C Street House and never had anything to do with creepola far-right religious group The Family, but Jeff Sharlet, author of The Family, and Ed Brayton of The Michigan Messenger beg to differ.

Rachel also pointed out that the $600 a month Stupak paid C Street for his room in a luxurious Capitol Hill townhouse — with maid service — is so generous as to look like a rent subsidy. A lot like a rent subsidy.

Maybe he tidied up the house a lot? Organized some super-cute Easter egg hunts?

Scooby Who?

Rachel continued her in-depth reporting on the highly entertaining tizzy the Republicans are spinning themselves into over health care reform and the general refusal of people to admit they’re Republicans without pixelation and an electronic voice-modifying device.

At least the Republicans are sticking to the first basic rule of fundraising: Nothing says “professional” like a PowerPoint presentation and some wacky pictures from the Internet.

Ana Marie Cox checked in (Hooray!) to talk about the Republican National Committee’s frank assessment of their own donors and whether anyone will actually notice.

I like it that the TRMS folks don’t skimp on the silly time when Rachel and Ms. Cox get to chat.

“Homegrown Terrorists Are in Our Midst”

You know how The Evil Dead II perfectly rides the line between hilarious and scary and you’re never sure which side it’ll drop you off on?

Rachel is about to introduce you to Operation Exodus, a budding paramilitary group founded on the principle that there is no better way to keep your community safe and peaceful than to issue guns to its angriest, most frightened residents.

I know Operation Exodus is against evil creeping socialism, but I think the good people of Bossier Parish had better make an exception for public health care lickety damn split.

Frank Schaeffer, a former evangelical Christian and the author of Crazy for God, nails what’s happening in a way that leaves you pretty firmly on the scary side of that line.

I am at a loss as to why a segment — an increasingly large segment — of the right is going so thoroughly batpuckey.

Were they not taught to lose gracefully as children? Are there really that many people who have been rendered unhinged by the reality of a black President? Are the paranoid fears of socialism that the Republicans are so cynically stoking really starting to take root?

Or is this just a chilling illustration of what happens when your religious beliefs forbid you to enjoy it when you have sex?

Right To Serve

You know what’s a great way to make people see the logic of your carefully reasoned argument? Wave a letter around!

Senator John McCain (R – Arizona) has a letter that a million jillion real officers have signed saying that the U.S. military will fall right apart if the hundreds of LGBT members who are already serving are allowed to stop lying about who they are.

Senator McCain, I’m waving a letter too. You’ll never guess what it says.

The great thing about the letter-waving tactic is that it also works if your argument sucks cockroach toes, which is lucky for Senator McCain. Because who’s going to bother to read the letter and check the signatures?

Oh, Rachel might.

You have to admit, it’s pretty impressive when dead military leaders come back to weigh in on national policy. Since we’re checking in with the departed, how far back are we allowed to go? I think Alexander the Great might have an opinion.

Round Up the Usual Suspects Everyone

Here’s the difference between Rachel Maddow and Liz Cheney:

Wait, sorry — I have to back up and try that again.

Here is the most significant of the 853,000 differences between Rachel Maddow and Liz Cheney:

Liz only sniffs out conspiracies. Rachel will follow the trail straight to the conspiracy’s dark heart, no matter how terrifying the truth may get.

You need to see this clip. Seriously, no matter what. You need to see this clip.

And on a personal note, this is my last RachelWatch.

I have absolutely loved writing this column over the past year-and-change, but I’ve reluctantly decided that it’s time to make room for other projects.

Thanks so much for taking the time to stop in. I will miss RachelWatch, the lively and intelligent debate in the comments, and you. Please drop by Twitter and say hi sometime.

Many thanks also to Jay Vanasco at 365Gay, who offered me the column in the first place. She and Sarah Warn, Trish Bendix, and Karman Kregloe at AfterEllen have been unfailingly helpful and supportive.

And one final, enormous chunk of thanks and frank admiration to Dr. Maddow and everyone at The Rachel Maddow Show for putting together such a fun, informative, and incredibly kick-ass show night after night. I look forward to the pleasure of watching without taking notes.

Well, eventually without taking notes.

I’ll taper off.

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