Republican Senator warns against being the party of conspiracy theory and talk show hosts

One of the three key reasons I left the Republican Party over twelve years ago is its tendency to make things up. Aided and abetted by radio talk show hosts and the Fox prime time line-up, whose primary mission is misinformation not news, the party became more distasteful to me. I have noted before the outgoing president did not create this untruthful bent, but he has certainly shown how to leverage it more.

Now, with social media allowing less fettered information to proliferate, conspiracy theories have found an accepting home. This is not just my opinion. In an article in Business Insider by T. Porter called “GOP Senator Ben Sasse warned that the QAnon conspiracy theory movement is destroying the Republican Party,” he rakes the now-Trump Party over the coals. Here are a few paragraphs, with a link below.

“Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska has warned in an op-ed in The Atlantic that the QAnon conspiracy theory movement is destroying the GOP.

 ‘We can dedicate ourselves to defending the Constitution and perpetuating our best American institutions and traditions, or we can be a party of conspiracy theories, cable-news fantasies, and the ruin that comes with them,’ writes Sasse of the GOP.

Adherents of the QAnon conspiracy theory believe, groundlessly, that a cabal of Satan worshipping child abusers control the world. Followers of the movement were on the front line of the Capitol riots, in which a police officer and a rioter who had shared QAnon slogans on social media were killed. 

Swaths of the GOP have embraced the movement, and Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene has openly backed the movement. Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska has warned that the QAnon conspiracy theory movement is destroying the GOP in a blistering op-ed for The Atlantic.

We must confirm our sources (and check other sources) when we espouse information, especially the more sensational. We must ask more why questions of people who are articulating things that are too sensational to be true. We must summon a few seconds of courage to say, “I don’t agree with that” or “I don’t see how that could be true.”

Truth has become a victim in the last four years. Among many poor legacies to choose from, one that will linger on is Trump’s escalation of the term “fake news.” The biggest purveyor of fake news in America convinces unsuspecting followers that others are lying. And, that may be the worst conspiracy of all.

GOP Senator Ben Sasse warned that the QAnon conspiracy theory movement is destroying the Republican Party (msn.com)

Thoughts for Thursday – Conspiracies abound

Water, water everywhere. While the wildfires burn out west and in Greece, I live on the east coast of the United States and we are inundated daily with heavy rain. It feels like a wet version of “Groundhog’s Day,” where Bill Murray’s character relives the same day.

Here are a few random soggy thoughts for Thursday.

Conspiracy theories abound on the web. Yet, every once in awhile justice may be served. Alex Jones of Infowars is trying to stop a trial where he is rightfully accused of spreading a false story that the Sandy Hook shooting story is a hoax. As a result, these poor families who lost a child or adult relative, have to be taunted and harassed by Jones’ followers. This is far worse than the Westboro church that picketed military funerals because of the nation’s stance on allowing LGBT people join the military. Jones is touting free speech, but this man has caused mental anguish because of his blatant misuse of his voice and disregard of any common decency.

The US President continues to claim the Mueller investigation is a “witchhunt,” the same term that President Richard Nixon used to decry the Watergate investigation. So the day after President Trump says collusion is not a crime after repeatedly saying he did not collude, he wants to end the Mueller probe. Help me understand how a thin-skinned man was not aware of a meeting in a building with his name on it where he works and lives, attended by his son, son-in-law and campaign manager to get dirt to throw at his opponent, a favorite tactic of his? After his Putin fawning performance in Helsinki, I am 100% convinced POTUS is guilty of more than just obstruction of justice. This is certainly no witch hunt, says this former Republican and Independent voter.

Speaking of conspiracies, a bona fide real one was captured in the “Pentagon Papers.” While Nixon did his level best to prevent The Washington Post and The Nee York Times from publishing these stories, this conspiracy involved Nixon and his two predecessors (LBJ and Kennedy) fighting a battle started by Eisenhower. These Presidents knew the Vietnam War was unwinnable, but kept fighting it to avoid the disgrace of losing. Tens of thousands of Americans (and hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese people) died after we knew the cause was lost. The North Vietnamese and Viet Cong were fighting for their country, while we fought for a corrupt leader sympathetic to the US. It was not in the Pentagon Papers, but years later it was discovered Presidential candidate Nixon secretely waylaid a peace deal underway, saying he could get better terms. Four years later and after more deaths, peace was brokered. Nixon denied this, but his voice was caught on tape as the South Vietnamese leader was being surveilled.

It should be noted that LBJ knew of Nixon’s “treason” as he called it, but chose not to bring it out, so as not to sway the election. It should be noted that Obama did the same thing when he knew the Russians were trying to influence the election in Trump’s favor. Both LBJ and Obama were wrong. However, while Trump tries to blame Obama for inaction, he was already touting the election was rigged. He was right – it was rigged to favor Trump.

That is all for this Thursday. Conspiracy theories abound. Most are only that. Yet, when they are true, they are whoppers. Usually the greater the effort to squelch them indicates their veracity.