World Net Daily, clearing house of conspiracy theories and the loons that subscribe to them, dished out the dirt yesterday on the new feud brewing between two tea party favorites: wacko Glenn Beck and wacko Grover Norquist.
Remember now, before we proceed, that just the other day, as Mother Jones reported, “Glenn Beck Show Claims Tea Partiers Are Better at Science—But Mangles the Research.” Glenn Beck says tea partiers are smart folks. There is no doubt the people backing and funding the tea party are as sinisterly clever as any plotters in history. But Glenn Beck is clearly no mastermind.
Here is what happened: Norquist made the mistake of criticizing Ted Cruz. Remember when he told Ezra Klein’s Wonkblog that Cruz had ‘pushed House Republicans into traffic and wandered away’? And it’s not that Norquist has a hard-on because Cruz refused to sign his tax pledge. Cruz did sign it and Norquist duly patted him on the head. This is about Cruz co-opting the fight against Obamacare. Norquist wanted negotiations. Cruz instead took hostages and issued demands.
Glenn Beck, who loves him some Ted Cruz, now wants to destroy Grover Norquist. But if Beck is the self-appointed patron saint of the tea party, Norquist is its ideological heart. A haters gonna hate but how’s he even such an accomplished hater as Glenn Beck going to pull this one off?
Well, so the Beckian reasoning goes, Norquist is a Muslim lover and in the Muslim Brotherhood’s hip pocket and therefore ripe for destruction at the hands of the Muslim-hating tea party. And oh no, Grover Norquist is a “GOP insider” says WND. You know what that means. There aren’t many dirtier words than “insider” in the tea party lexicon.
Tea party time!
It’s rather humorous that Democrats would have loved to found a way all this time to destroy Grover Norquist and couldn’t, and now the party that can’t is going to do it for us if Beck has his way.
So on his television show Monday, Glenn Beck revealed that he agrees with the left about Norquist. He said that he will reveal the “background and workings” of the founder of Americans for Tax Reform and that this is “just the beginning.” Oooooh. Beckian ominous with icing on top.
With Beck were the Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney, the man behind Michele Bachmann’s obsession with the Muslim Brotherhood, and Daniel Greenfield of the David Horowitz Freedom Center,which is working with Breitbart to start a sort of right wing MediaMatters, except one that tells lies instead of reveals facts.
“[Norquist] is the guy responsible for a lot of the Muslim Brotherhood stuff that goes on in the White House, isn’t he?” Beck asked his co-conspirators.
“Glenn, I think most people who know Grover only as a prominent anti-tax guy in the conservative movement would find that statement unbelievable, and to be honest with you I would’ve, but for the fact that I saw it first-hand as a result of sharing office space for what I think of seven biblically long years with Grover Norquist,” answered noted Islamophobe and conspiracy theorist Gaffney.
It is important to put Gaffney’s words in context. If Norquist does not exactly inspire trust, think about Gaffney, who the Southern Poverty Law Center refers to as “the anti-Muslim movement’s most paranoid propagandist.” So think about what he says next:
“I saw terrorists in his office space. I had colleagues come to me and say, ‘You know there’s a Muslim Brotherhood front operating out of his office suite?'”
“It was called the Islamic Free Market Foundation, or Institute,” Gaffney continued, saying it is more commonly known as simply the Islamic Institute. “This was an operation that was created by a man who’s now serving time in federal prison for terrorism by the name Abdurahman Alamoudi.”
This sordid little episode is part of the ongoing war between extremists and the Republican establishment, as Beck made clear with his closing:
Greenfield later added: “If you were a freedom guy, then why would he be backing an ideology associated with a complete totalitarian regime? Why would he be backing the…misfortunes of the conservative movement? And why would he be doing everything possible to undermine the possibility that the Republican Party can back a freedom-based agenda?”
Beck concluded by saying this is a “complex issue,” but that it is time that somebody takes on the “establishment Republicans” and tell you “exactly who’s who.”
“If you’re for the Constitution, I don’t care if you’re a liberal or a Democrat or a Republican and a conservative, I don’t really care, if you’re for the Constitution of the United States of America,” Beck said. “That’s our dividing line, and there are too many in the Republican Party, so let’s clean out our own house first.”
In response, Norquist emailed World Net Daily and said “This is old and sad.” He didn’t seem particularly worried about being targeted by Beck for destruction, but then Beck said that you “don’t ever take this guy on unless you’re prepared.”
Norquist revealed that he had tried to help Gaffney when George W. Bush was elected, gave him office space and “introduced him to folks.” In return, Gaffney accuses him of consorting with terrorists on 9/11 and “also says I am gay.”
“I have ignored [this] sad person and his self-absorbed conspiracy theories that revolve around himself.
“Say a prayer for Frank. No one deserves his troubles.”
So WND asked Gaffney to respond and Gaffney duly emailed that
Grover’s deflections, refusal to answer direct questions and falsehoods are typical of his response to date to very serious, factually based concerns about his past and continuing conduct with and on behalf of Islamists.
WND goes on to point out that,
Charges that Norquist is aiding and abetting radical Muslim leaders have come from members of Congress as well as other prominent critics of radical Islam.
In 2011, Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., denounced Norquist from the House floor for “unsavory” connections, including ties to Alamoudi and Al-Arian. Wolf also pointed to Norquist’s support for the Ground Zero mosque and his advocacy for transferring Guantanamo detainees to U.S. soil.
“Simply put, I believe Mr. Norquist is connected with or has profited from a number of unsavory people and groups out of the mainstream,” said Wolf.
“Documentation shows that he has deep ties to supporters of Hamas and other terrorist organizations that are sworn enemies of the United States and our ally Israel.”
Norquist, at the time, called Wolf’s speech a “hissy fit” and “a compilation of whack job criticisms,” arguing the congressman is one of only six Republican members of the U.S. House who has refused to sign ATR’s no-tax pledge.
One thing is clear: there is a lot of whack-jobbery in the Republican Party but the GOP did this to itself by making whack-jobbery a job prerequisite.
They say of professional sports teams that you never know just how good a team is until you have seen it react to adversity. Keeping in mind that sports teams are generally not composed of whack-jobs, that if that adage holds true in politics, then we have seen the true measure of the Republican Party, and it’s not pretty.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.