Brian Tashman's blog

Religious Right Activists Either Totally Clueless Or Utterly Dishonest About Net Neutrality

This week, spokesmen for the American Family Association and National Religious Broadcasters, two of the country’s top Religious Right groups, came out strongly against net neutrality, while simultaneously demonstrating that they have no idea what net neutrality actually is. Yesterday, both groups weighed in again, as NRB’s Craig Parshall spoke with Dan Celia of the AFA, both of them completely misrepresenting net neutrality as a threat to freedom.

Parshall and Celia were upset by President Obama’s recent call to reclassify broadband services as a public utility in order to preserve net neutrality rules jeopardized by a recent D.C. Circuit Court ruling. Under net neutrality, internet data must be treated equally by providers rather than allow companies like Comcast or Verizon deliver data at different speeds or charge premium rates.

Celia, however, sees net neutrality as a Big Government plot, describing Obama’s announcement as a “social-control grab, power grab” and a sign of “scary, scary times.”

“This is a huge power grab,” Parshall replied. He said he doesn’t have an issue with companies like Comcast or Verizon but “has a much bigger problem with Apple and Google and Facebook” who he says “have decided that they’re not going to allow certain orthodox Christian or conservative viewpoints being aired on their platform.”

Parshall then absurdly claimed that people should oppose net neutrality if they want to “protect the internet” as a free and open “village green being the place where the public can get together to exchange ideas, that’s going to go the way of the Dodo bird.”

In other parts of the interview, Celia wondered if net neutrality undermines the “freedom of speech” and the ability to “proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” while Parshall maintained that net neutrality is wrong because “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it,” which completely misunderstands the fact that it is net neutrality opponents who seek to dramatically alter internet regulations.

Conservative Outlet Wonders Why 'Unedited' Klingenschmitt Seems 'Certifiable'

The John Birch Society’s magazine, the New American, covered Gordon Klingenschmitt’s victory in a Colorado state legislative election this week, praising the internet televangelist for standing up to “Right Wing Watch (RWW), the vicious political action arm of the Leftist organization People for the American Way.”

Klingenschmitt temporarily shut down RWW’s YouTube account last year by filing bogus copyright claims against video clips we had posted of him saying various outrageous things. All of our videos were protected by Fair Use, and all were eventually restored. The New American cited Klingenschmitt’s failed attempt to terminate RWW’s YouTube page, along with his demand that gay people receive security screenings before meeting with him, as reasons to commend Klingenschmitt.

The outlet also said that the titles we used for “unedited” clips of Klingenschmitt “were designed to make Klingenschmitt appear radical if not certifiable.”

Or, maybe it is what Klingenschmitt says in these unedited videos (and emails) that make him seem completely insane.

Klingenschmitt was also probably remembering his fight with Right Wing Watch (RWW), the vicious political action arm of the Leftist organization People for the American Way which took excerpts from his TV show and republished them, unedited, except for changing the titles. Those titles were designed to make Klingenschmitt appear radical if not certifiable.

He posted notices of infringement at their YouTube sites and those videos offensive to Klingenschmitt were temporarily removed. He posted those notices, he said, “because I got tired of their theft, copyright infringement and piracy of my original video content.” He continued, "They don’t add any value to the content. They simply steal and copy and post with their own logo. They are not a legitimate news organization."

Typical of the retitling of some of Klingenschmitt’s shows include these:

Klingenschmitt Declares that ENDA [the Employment Non-Discrimination Act supported by several pro-LGBT advocacy groups] Promotes Bestiality

Klingenschmitt Says Wendy Davis [a Texas politician who supports same-sex marriage] Is Ruled By A "Demon of Murder"


When RWW pushed back against Klingenschmitt’s successful, if temporary, removal of the offensive YouTube posts, Klingenschmitt sought legal advice. His decision not to sue gave a measure of the man:

My lawyers believe they [RWW] are vulnerable. They said I should sue them, but I don’t want to do that right now because I don’t want to hurt them. My goal is only to defend my content.



He’s also unintimidated by the attention he has received from the far Left. When members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community wanted to meet with him to discuss their differences, Klingenschmitt put it off until after the election and then only on the condition that each individual attending go through a background check first.

Phyllis Schlafly: Obama Doesn't Love America, Dares To Send Women In Combat

Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly chatted with “Infowars” host Alex Jones on Monday, where the two discussed the Pentagon’s decision last year to lift the military ban on women serving in combat positions.

Schlafly raised her concerns about the lifting of the ban after Jones worried that the military might be used as a “domestic force” to “go after the Tea Party,” telling the fringe conspiracy theorist: “I don’t have any respect for the military who send women into combat.”

After Jones suggested that Reagan went silent on criticizing the “New World Order” after a failed assassination attempt against him, Schlafly conceded that “Reagan wasn’t perfect” — a blasphemous claim in certain right-wing circles — but still loved this country.

Unlike Obama!

“You’re saying, bottom line he was a good guy who loved this country,” Jones said. “That’s a big difference from Obama who obviously wants to destroy it.”

Schlafly agreed: “He obviously doesn’t love this country, he doesn’t want us to think we’re better than anybody else and of course we are.”

Kamal Saleem: US May Fall To Islamic Rule By 2020

Kamal Saleem, a phony ex-terrorist who believes Hillary Clinton, U.S. military generals and President Obama’s babysitter are plotting to use immigration reform and abortion rights to impose Islamic law on the U.S., is out with a new book co-written with Family Research Council official Jerry Boykin, titled “The Coalition.”

Saleem spoke with Boykin and FRC president Tony Perkins yesterday on “Washington Watch” about the book and the coming Islamic takeover of America.

Unfortunately, Perkins didn’t ask Saleem about his recent claim that Obama managed to simultaneously attend mosque services in Washington, D.C., and vacation in Hawaii on Christmas Day.

Saleem did however speak about Seven Mountains theology, or the belief that conservative Christians need to control the seven main spheres of societal influence, citing the work of Os Hillman, whom he refered to as “O.S. Hill.” Saleem said that he fears radical Islamists have “infiltrated” America’s “seven spheres of influence,” pointing to an interfaith service at the National Cathedral as proof that the “Chrislamic church” is “destroying our civilization from within.”

He added that America is experiencing what he calls the “Swedish syndrome.” In that country, he said, “when the Islamists came to takeover they started prying on the political leadership” until eventually the Swedish “leadership started protecting them and one day he came to protect them and led their movement over there so now it’s led by the politician of Sweden and the Muslims are taking over the civilization. Same thing is happening here in the United States.”

If the Islamist plot to take over America isn’t turned back, Saleem explained, “America will be fallen” by 2020.

Right-Wing Activists Now Attack Obama For Doing Too Much To Fight Ebola

Several GOP politicians campaigned this year on stoking fears about the Ebola virus, warning that an Ebola epidemic was about to sweep the United States and it was all President Obama’s fault for failing to handle the crisis appropriately and shut down the border with Mexico.

The Obama administration is focused on stopping the epidemic in West Africa, where this year’s outbreak started — rather than blocking it from coming in from Mexico, where there have been zero Ebola cases — by building up the region’s wrecked health care infrastructure. And thanks to aggressive monitoring and treatment, as of today there is not a single known case of Ebola in the U.S.

So, after criticizing Obama for doing too little to fight Ebola, now several conservative commentators are attacking Obama for doing too much to quell the spread of virus.

Betsy McCaughey, the conservative columnist behind the “death panel” smear of Obamacare, derided the administration’s latest proposal, which she calls “Ebolacare,” to help build a stronger health care system in West African countries as “a typical Obama administration spread-the-wealth scheme kicked up a notch to redistribute American resources to poor countries.” Writing in her syndicated column yesterday, McCaughey lamented that the potential “shifting [of] resources to Africa” is “twice what we give Israel.”

McCaughey previously accused the Centers for Disease Control of “lying” about the ways people can contract Ebola and said Obama was putting American lives “at risk for the sake of political correctness.”

George Russell of Fox News writes today that conservatives fear “the crisis is being used to jam a massive dose of spending through the lame-duck Congress. He interviews Dr. Tom Stossel of the American Enterprise Institute, who says that the plan to fight Ebola is just an excuse for “throwing money at various government agencies.”

Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly, who warned last month said Obama was “letting these diseased people into this country to infect our own people” in order to make the U.S. more like Africa, urged Republicans to resist bipartisanship and refuse to fund the proposed measures to fight Ebola.

She told notorious conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on Monday that Obama “said he won’t close our borders to people with Ebola. He wants $6 billion so he can set up a plan to stop Ebola in West Africa, now we didn’t elect him for that and Congress, which holds the purse strings, they shouldn’t give him the money.”

Rick Wiles: On Veterans Day, Apologize To Vets For Marriage Equality

On yesterday’s edition of “Trunews,” host Rick Wiles said he intended to mark Veterans Day by apologizing to veterans for the legalization of same-sex marriage, which he said has dishonored those who died in battle.

It’s an appropriate time, Veterans Day. My heart is so broken over the immorality of this nation and the hedonistic mindset of so many people in this country. I want to go to Arlington Cemetery and go to grave to gravesite and say to those fallen soldiers, I’m sorry, we threw it away. We threw it away, you died for us, we threw it away. I want to go to those gravesites and apologize to those soldiers that we’re such a bunch of lazy, hedonistic, self-serving people in this country today that we threw away what they fought and died for. It sickens me, it sickens me that men bled on battlefields, their life poured out of them, so we would be free, so we would have a decent nation. Anybody going to tell me that the men who died in World War II were fighting for same-sex marriage? Are you really going to tell me that’s why they risked their lives and died?

The End Times broadcaster also alleged that God told him that Nazism and anti-Christian persecution are coming to America, informing him “that there would be a day that there would be a Nazi power rising up in the United States of America to snuff out the Gospel, to take over the church of Jesus Christ.

I’m saying it is here now, in 2014, this is a Nazi spirit that’s in the United States of America and thousands of churches are intimidated by it, frightened by it and being silent as this monster rises up,” he said.

Religious Right Group: Net Neutrality Threatens Free Speech

National Religious Broadcasters, the televangelist group that pledges to “be for the First Amendment what the NRA is for the Second Amendment,” today blasted President Obama’s support for net neutrality, saying that the president’s position “sends a particularly poor signal to communist China.”

In a statement, NRB calls net neutrality a “power grab of the internet” and says that the policy somehow threatens “free speech” and distracts from the Federal Communications Commission’s mission of “promoting the values of free speech, free exercise of religion, and a free press for citizen user-generated content that is transmitted over the Internet.”

Dr. Jerry A. Johnson, President & CEO of NRB, spoke out today against the President’s call for increased government control over the Internet.

“Free speech and free enterprise are the bedrock of the Internet,” stated Dr. Johnson. “This federal power grab being advocated by President Obama is, unfortunately, right in line with others by this Administration. It sends a particularly poor signal to communist China, where he is visiting this week.”

“Let me say that the President does have a valid concern that providers not block legal online content that they do not prefer or like,” continued Dr. Johnson. “Indeed, I would challenge him to consider that ‘edge providers’ like Facebook also should not engage in viewpoint censorship.”

“However, he is very wrong to insist that the FCC unilaterally assume heavy-handed Title II authority over the Internet,” asserted Dr. Johnson. “If the FCC feels it needs such power, the Executive Branch should ask Congress for it, and see what the people’s representatives permit. That is how our Republic works.”

In its public filing last summer with the FCC on this net neutrality proceeding, NRB stated:

We believe that the Commission has sufficient, though narrow, authority under section 706, as well as ancillary jurisdiction under Title I of the Communications Act of 1934, to provide an adequate basis for limited, restrained jurisdiction; but asserting jurisdiction under Title II with its heavy hand of telecommunications regulations is ill-advised….Moreover, we believe that this narrow range of FCC authority should be fixed on two objectives: (1) fostering competitive, free enterprise innovation regarding Internet services, applications, and devices, and (2) promoting the values of free speech, free exercise of religion, and a free press for citizen user-generated content that is transmitted over the Internet.

Ben Carson Will Crack Down On Non-Citizens Committing Voter Fraud By Revoking Their Citizenship

As he prepares his bid for president, WorldNetDaily columnist Ben Carson unveiled today his “common-sense prescriptions” and “bipartisan solutions” for U.S. immigration policy, calling for the creation of a guest-worker program and insisting that undocumented immigrants in the country leave before they can attain legal status.

The Republican activist bravely offered the very new idea that he wants to “have secure borders,” calling on the government to adopt policies “learned from security personnel in prisons and other secured facilities” while lamenting that children of undocumented immigrants can enroll in public schools, a constitutional right.

Carson also demanded that the government begin deporting undocumented immigrants for the extremely rare incidents of voter fraud… and revoking the citizenship that they do not have: “Anyone caught involved in voter fraud should be immediately deported and have his citizenship revoked.”

It is time for Congress to act and to do so in a bipartisan fashion that engenders the confidence of the American people. There are many common-sense prescriptions within reach of our government. It is time to seize them.

To begin to solve this problem, we must first have some understanding of why it exists. Despite all of its problems, America is still the place of dreams. As such, it is small wonder that so many from other nations would like to live here.

Right now, we have very porous borders and unenthusiastic and inconsistent enforcement of immigration laws. Further incentives for illegal immigration are easy enrollment in public schools, easy employment for those willing to take jobs others don’t want, easy access to health care and easy acquisition of public support through welfare programs. Yet this population cannot participate in the formal workforce, which means they cannot contribute fully to their local economies.



A national guest-worker program makes sense and seems to work well in Canada. Non-citizens would have to apply for a guest-worker permit and have a guaranteed job awaiting them. Taxes would be paid at a rate commensurate with other U.S. workers, and special visas would allow for easy entry and egress across borders. Guest-worker status would be granted to individuals and not to groups.

People already here illegally could apply for guest-worker status from outside of the country. This means they would have to leave first. They should in no way be rewarded for having broken our laws, but if they are wise, they will arrange with their employer before they leave to immediately offer them a legal job as soon as their application is received. When they return, they still would not be U.S. citizens, but they would be legal, and they would be paying taxes. Only jobs that are vacant as a result of a lack of interest by American citizens should be eligible for the guest-worker program.



All of this is irrelevant unless we have secure borders. There is much that can be learned from security personnel in prisons and other secured facilities, and there is a great deal of smart technology that can be employed to achieve secure borders. It is a matter of will rather than ability.

As long as we reward people who break laws, they will continue to break laws. We do need a continual flow of immigrants, but choosers need not be beggars. We make decisions based on our needs. People who refuse to comply with the rules must forfeit chances of legalization in the future. Anyone caught involved in voter fraud should be immediately deported and have his citizenship revoked. The point is this: We must create a system that disincentivizes illegal immigration and upholds the rule of law while providing us with a steady stream of immigrants from other nations who will strengthen our society. Let’s solve the problem and stop playing political football.

Michael Savage: GOP Should Shut Down The Government Over Immigration Reform

On Friday, conservative talk show host Michael Savage said Republicans should once again shut down the government to protest President Obama’s policies, this time on immigration reform.

Savage hoped that conservatives in Congress will launch a fight over government funding if Obama issues an executive action relieving some undocumented immigrants from deportation, calling Obama “a psycho” who “wants to be a dictator.”

I frankly think we need a government shutdown. If that’s what it takes, shut it down. just shut it down, just shut it down. If Obama wants to be a dictator, damn it, cut off his funding, shut it down. What good is a government of one man? What do you mean a government? If the guy’s a rogue president, a psycho, just shut it down. Go for a close down, what are you afraid of? What the illegals won’t like you? They’re not going to like you anyway. What do you mean don’t shut it down? Cut off the funding for Obama’s amnesty, that’s the talk right now inside Congress.

“We’re already in a civil war,” Savage said. “President Obama declared war on America the day he was elected,” arguing that Obama has been engaged in a war “against the military, against the police, against the education department, against the economy, everything he’s done has been a civil war.”

“Obama has been conducting a civil war from the day he started,” he said.

Solomon: Obama Is 'A Homosexual Muslim Married To A Man'

In an interview last month, after explaining why politicians should fear getting shot, Gun Owners of America executive director Larry Pratt and talk show host Stan Solomon speculated that liberals in the U.S. are teaming up with Muslim radicals in order to destroy America.

Pratt lamented that the “Democrat [sic] party” believes that “everything is to be reduced to race or some sort of sexual perversion,” while Solomon was flummoxed as to why “they can’t help themselves but reach out and hug the Muslims and the Muslims, if they’d ever get into the position, would kill half the Democrats.”

The two then talked about how they have been preparing for the prospect of Sharia law governing America and that unlike defenseless liberals, they will be ready to fight back. Pratt reasoned that “the liberals are so consumed with hatred of our country that when they see somebody like a Muslim who hates America as well, they can’t get it through their head what you just pointed out, that they’re next. If they get those folks in power, if they pull off what they’re trying to do, they’re toast. You and I can probably protect ourselves because we’ve been preparing for that.” 

Solomon then suggested that President Obama is Muslim who is married to a man: “A homosexual Muslim married to man, I can’t imagine how Barack Obama would do if he ever ventured into a Muslim country and didn’t have 800,000 armed people around him.” (We aren’t sure if Solomon is referring to the far-right conspiracy theory that Obama is secretly married to his male Pakistani college roommate or the one that Michelle Obama is a transgender woman.) 

The gun lobbyist replied that Obama was steeped in Islam but most likely “disparages every religion, his religion is Barack Obama, but he is a man that does not like this country.”

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