This was a make or break week for Obamacare, with the enrollment deadline looming and a major goal hanging in the balance. Obamacare made good on the goal of 7 million sign-ups, and broke right-wingers tenuous grip with reality.
There should be a new rule for political debate, along the lines of Godwin's Law and its corollaries. It should go something like this: The arrive of “truthers” effectively ends the debate, and the side that resorts to "trutherism" first loses.
Like a puss-filled boil, “truthers” exploded onto the scene in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. United by their rejection of the official version of the attacks, and the belief that 9/11 was an “inside job” covered up by the U.S. government, they were the cultural heirs of previous conspiracy theorists, who believed that the moon landings were filmed on a Hollywood backlot, and that water fluoridation was part of the New World Order’s plan for world domination.
The 9/11 truthers' movement produced books and movies. The offshoots that grew from its spores include the "citizenship truthers" or "birthers," and more conspiracy theories concerning Barack Obama than any other human being ever — with the possible exception of Elvis.
Now, finally, the "Obamacare truthers" have arrived. The passage of the Affordable Care Act, the Supreme Court's ruling upholding ACA, and Obama's 2012 re-election, were bad enough. The news that over seven million Americans had signed up for Obamacare as of this week proved too much for right-wingers. They snapped.
Rather than face the reality of another success for Obamacare, conservatives fled to the warm embrace of unreality. But no one could top Glenn Beck's full-body freakout, which began with Beck raging against "rat bastards" in the media and ended with a classic Beck meltdown.
Apparently, the 7.1 million people who got covered, along with the 9.5 million already covered through Obamacare, get in the way of Glenn Beck’s pursuit of happiness.
The rest are included in the best of the worst in wingnuttery this week:
- Sen. John Barraso (R, WY) was among the first to dismiss that Obamacare had reached even 6 million enrollments. “I think they're cooking the books," he said on "Fox New Sunday."
- Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan, who can always be counted on to bring the crazy, wrote that if we “put aside” the success of seven million Americans enrolled in health insurance, Obamacare is like a “manic, many-armed, squid.”
- Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn told Time magazine, "This is President Obama’s Mission Accomplished moment," referring to George W. Bush's infamous 2003 declaration of an end to major combat operations in Iraq.
- On Fox News' "The Five," panelists questioned how "magically they hit the number," on Obamacare sign-ups, and repeated Sen. Barraso's claim.
- Fox News talking heads Bill O'Reilly and Charles Krauthammer agreed that the reported Obamacare enrollment numbers were "phony."
- Fox News got caught "cooking the books" with an obviously fake bar graph, and ended up having to apologize.
- Sean Hannity informed his radio audience that “millions of Obamacare applicants appeared out of thin air" and also accused the Obama administration of "cooking the books."
- After a shooting rampage at Fort Hood, TX left three people dead and 16 injured, Brietbart contributing journalist Patrick Dollard tweeted, "If there is even one more act of Muslim terrorism, it is time for Americans to start slaughtering Muslims in the street, all of them."
- An eighth grader in South Carolina helped introduce a bill to name the woolly mammoth as the official state fossil, only to have Republicans amend it to make it clear that God created the fossil.
- Sen. Lamar Alexander (R, TN) fretted that the Paycheck Fairness Act, which is designed to ensure equal pay, will actually be unfair to men.
- At a Heritage Foundation panel marking the end of Women’s History Month, conservative columnist Mona Charen said marriage was the answer to income inequality, for women.
- When a DuPont heir convicted of repeatedly raping his three-year-old daughter was sentenced to probation rather than prison, BarbWire senior editor Jeff Allen said gay people were to blame.
- Glenn Beck reacted to the resignation of Brendan Eich as CEO of Mozilla, following an outcry and boycott threats due to his support for California’s Proposition 8, said that gay activist groups are “becoming nothing but a terrorist organization.”Beck didn’t say whether the same applied to One Million Moms for boycotting Honey Graham over its LGBT inclusive “This Is Wholesome” campaign.
- During a live report, CBS Chicago reporter Jay Levine was physically attacked by an anti-Obama protester screaming incoherently about President Obama being a “war criminal."