Is the Speaker of the House Insane?

Just look at this transcript from Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, an interview with Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert:

HASTERT: Well, you know, that doesn’t do any good. You know, but look behind us at this convention. I remember when I was a kid watching my first convention in 1992, when both the Democratic Party and the Republican Party laid out their platform, laid out their philosophy, and that’s what they followed.

Here in this campaign, quote, unquote, “reform,” you take party power away from the party, you take the philosophical ideas away from the party, and give them to these independent groups.

You know, I don’t know where George Soros gets his money. I don’t know where — if it comes overseas or from drug groups or where it comes from. And I…

WALLACE: Excuse me?

HASTERT: Well, that’s what he’s been for a number years — George Soros has been for legalizing drugs in this country. So, I mean, he’s got a lot of ancillary interests out there.

WALLACE: You think he may be getting money from the drug cartel?

HASTERT: I’m saying I don’t know where groups — could be people who support this type of thing. I’m saying we don’t know. The fact is we don’t know where this money comes from.

The mind boggles, doesn’t it? Soros is for drug legalization, therefore he gets his money from drug cartels. Never mind that drug cartels are the LAST ones who want drug legalization, which would pretty much destroy their profits. And never mind that he’s wrong and we DO know where Soros gets his money, it’s all in his tax returns and public filings for his corporate interests. Those inconvenient little facts get in the way of a perfectly good irrational and illogical smear. Even the Fox News host was taken aback by such stupidity, but of course, being the good little journalist (read: lapdog) that he is, he doesn’t follow up on it and lets him just change the subject to something else rather than asking if he’s off his medication. Here’s how one commenter on Crooked Timber responded, turning the tables on Hastert, a former wrestling coach:


We don’t know whether Mr. Hastert likes to have sex with little boys, or whether he likes black boys or latino boys in addition to white boys. We do know he enjoys watching boys roll around on the ground together, and used to give boys instructions as to how to cradle another boy in their arms.

Someone may have documented the full extent of his pedophilia- there may even be a series of films of Mr. Hastert having sexual intercourse with boys- I would stress that at this point we don’t know for sure whether any such videotapes exist or whether Mr. Hastert might have destroyed them.

Brilliant. This is by no means the first time the right has made hypocritical attacks on Soros, a wealthy investor who is rather stridently anti-Bush and supports numerous groups that oppose his reelection. My favorite was Tony Blankely, former press secretary for Newt Gingrich and now columnist for the Washington Times. On Hannity and Colmes, he had this to say about Soros:

He is a self-admitted atheist. He was a Jew who figured out a way to survive the holocaust…

When a man with this kind — when a man is with this kind of money, and he’s spending it on trying to influence the American public in an election — trying to buy the election; he is not going to — we have a right to know what kind of an unscrupulous man he is.

Okay, let me see if I’ve got this straight…A man who is on the payroll of Reverend Moon says that since Soros is spending money trying to influence the American public in an election, we need to know what kind of man because…he’s a Jew who figured out a way to survive the holocaust? I think we have a new world record for unintentional irony and hypocrisy.

By the way, Blankely is an enormously influential political columnist and Hastert is 3rd in line for the presidency. Sleep tight.

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