Bachmann and her unfounded claim that Iran planned to divide up Iraq

Rep. Michele Bachmann greeting a man dressed as Abraham Lincoln at the Republicans of Black Hawk County Dinner in Waterloo on Sunday.
Rep. Michele Bachmann greeting a man dressed as Abraham Lincoln at the Republicans of Black Hawk County Dinner in Waterloo on Sunday.

An occasional series

In early 2007, I got a tip that led me to something pretty strange — well, somewhere between delusional or apocalyptic, really — that Rep. Michele Bachmann had said — on tape and beyond dispute about an important national security matter — in a podcast interview with a St. Cloud reporter.

Why talk about it now? Well, as the presidential field winnows down to just one Minnesotan, and Bachmann is routinely described as a top-tier contender for the nomination, inquiring minds who haven’t witnessed Bachmann’s gravity-defying act from as close up for as long as we Minnesotans have need our help in understanding just what the heck is up with her.

I covered Bachmann extensively from the year of her first congressional race until she stopped returning my calls, perhaps because of the story I’m about to recount. But the tale offers a detailed case study of one of Bachmann’s signature traits. It’s her pattern of saying things she can’t back up and wiggling through the ensuing questions without ever acknowledging the falsehood or explaining how she came to say it in the first place.

Although some of them are very famous (like the “anti-American” allegation against candidate Obama in 2008), the one below has mostly been lost to the Bachmann legend, even though it’s more substantive than many of the others. The main point is just to watch the pattern unfold.

Bachmann and me, the early days
I had not covered the Legislature during Bachmann’s state Senate days, when she became famous in Minnesota mostly for her anti-gay-marriage stuff. But I was the Strib’s main guy on the 2006 campaign that sent her to Congress. I maintained good reporter-newsmaker relations with Bachmann and her campaign staff, could always get my questions answered and had good access to the candidate.

Bachmann & Me

I was still playing the “objective” journalism game, although I had started blogging for the Strib and experiencing some of the liberation of the bloggerly voice. But, although I was suspected by rightys of being a lefty, I actually took more grief from Bachmann-dislikers for not wielding my mighty pen and pixels to prevent her election over the hapless Dem nominee, Patty Wetterling. Anyway, the point is I had gotten to know Bachmann and her peeps and could usually get my questions answered, until …

The Iraq war was in full rage then, but the country had developed doubts. Bachmann, who was and is a hawk, was in the stay-until-victory camp during the ’06 campaign. (So far as I know, she still is.)  And she won the race for Congress, more easily than the pundits had predicted.

She had been in office less than two months when she made a new and surprising claim, to wit:

“Iran is the trouble maker, trying to tip over apple carts all over Baghdad right now because they want America to pull out. And do you know why? It’s because they’ve already decided that they’re going to partition Iraq.

“And half of Iraq, the western, northern portion of Iraq, is going to be called the Iraq State of Islam, something like that. And I’m sorry, I don’t have the official name, but it’s meant to be the training ground for the terrorists. There’s already an agreement made.

“They are going to get half of Iraq and that is going to be a terrorist safe haven zone where they can go ahead and bring about more terrorist attacks in the Middle East region and then to come against the United States because we are their avowed enemy.”

Bachmann did not say, on the St. Cloud podcast, how she knew of this plan. The St. Cloud reporter, regrettably, did not ask her. In fact, the St. Cloud paper didn’t even write a story about it — just posted the audio file on its website.

The suggestion of an Iran-al-Qaida cabal made little sense to those who knew that Shiite Iran and Sunni al-Qaida are mortal enemies. And it seemed unlikely that knowledge of such a plot would first surface in a podcast interview between a freshman congresswoman and the St. Cloud Times. But now, with Bachmann a Member of Congress, with access to briefings, such a statement had to be both reported and checked out.

I called the Bachmann office, asked for the backup for her statement and was asked to wait overnight, which I did. Late the next morning, I was getting itchy to post. (I was blogging by then, and this was going in my blog “The Big Question” and, presumably, in the following day’s paper.) I called to press Bachmann spokester Heidi Fredrickson for an answer. She promised that one would come that morning, but it didn’t. So, as I had told Fredrickson I would do, I posted the verbatim quote on the blog, along with a promise to add Bachmann’s additional explanation when it came later in the day. Then I went to lunch.

The explanation never came.

Instead, when I got back from lunch, I learned that the blog had set Strib traffic records (at least for a non-Vikings story). Hundreds of comments poured in from all over the country. Turns out, righty web god Matt Drudge had — by some mechanism I’ve never understood — seen my piece and linked to it. This led to the Bachmann claim being read on the air by even bigger righty god Rush Limbaugh. (I no longer have the Limbaugh transcript, but as evidence how unfamiliar the country was with Bachmann at the time, I recall Rushbo asking aloud: “Who is this woman? She must be a Democrat.”)

All of this made it seem more urgent that I reach my erstwhile friend Bachmann and get her explanation/clarification/backup. But as the day wore on it became clear that I would never get that call. I’m not sure that I ever got a call back from Bachmann again. I have had to learn to cover her, in my small way, without access to her. For this piece and the series that it kicks off, I emailed her campaign spokesman seeking access to the candidate, or even just a willingness of the press staff to take my questions, but have had no response, which follows a trail of similar persona non grata treatment. I repeat the offer here.

Part of Bachmann’s current appeal seems to be about her political bravery. She will say — with blistering clarity — the things the others are too cautious to say. And she sticks to them. And there is something to this idea. But in situations like this one — especially when the situation requires her to admit error — she can get very shy, evasive and cowardly.

The morning after
The morning after all that poop hit the fan, Bachmann issued a brief statement (no questions allowed) which began: “I’m sorry if my words have been misconstrued.”

She had not been misconstrued. She hadn’t been construed at all. Her original Iran-and-the-terrorists statement had been quoted verbatim, without comment, with space left for her to expand, explain or reply however she wanted. The “I’ve been misunderstood” complaint has become part of the pattern that follows after Bachmann discovers that one of her statements has blown up.

In the Iran-has-a-plan case study, after claiming to have been misconstrued, Bachmann’s no-questions-allowed new statement tried to clean up the mess by substituting a longer, vaguer and less provably delusional statement about the evil of Iran and the dangers that could emanate from the region. It was framed as a clarification of Bachmann’s earlier statement. But it really amounted to a non-retraction retraction of most of what she had said without acknowledging that she was retracting it and without explaining how she came to make such a clear statement that Iran had a partner and a plot to create a terrorism-allowed-zone in Iraq from which to attack America. The new statement simply made no reference to her formerly certain knowledge of what Iran was planning but said instead that “It is difficult to ascertain Iran’s intentions towards Iraq.”

That’s quite a change from “they’ve already decided that they’re going to partition Iraq,” and the second could hardly be taken as a clarification of the first.

To this day, Bachmann has never explained how she came to so confidently and matter-of-factly allege, as if it were a known fact, a very serious non-fact about a non-existent alliance and plot to attack America.

A few days later, Bachmann did (still without submitting herself to any questions on the subject) produce an op-ed piece (published in the Strib March 1 — three weeks after she made the original statement and one week after my post had gone viral). That third version did, at least, acknowledge — sort of — that she had said something in the St. Cloud interview that she could not back up.

It remains viewable on her congressional website. The piece included some shreds of evidence that, if you don’t scrutinize them, perhaps suggest that something somewhat similar to what she had alleged might be slightly possible, but not really. In fact, not even close.

I did write a piece for the paper and for the blog — pointing out that Bachmann had, while not really coming anywhere near clean and failing to prove the veracity of her original statement , at least acknowledged that she had said something she couldn’t back up. And I prepared to leave the matter there.

But not Rep. Bachmann.

Instead, she did what she has often done. While continuing to hide from an interview that would be tough, fair, civil and fact-based, she sought refuge in a venue where she knew she would receive friendly, barely-informed questions from interviewers who would ask no follow-ups and where she would be talking to an adoring audience.

Specifically, on March 8, a week after the op-ed fake-takeback, she went on Christian-themed radio station KKMS, a show called “Live with Jeff and Lee,” where she has always felt completely comfortable. Jeff or Lee asked her about the flap, which had just about blown over, and she allowed as how she appreciated the opportunity to talk about it and clear it up. OMG. Like she hadn’t spent two full weeks in the witness protection program to avoid any chance of being asked about it.

Then, with little interference from her interrogators, she proceeded to unleash — depending on how you might want to count them — between seven and 12 whopping falsehoods, including slanders against my professionalism, rubbish about how the story came to be published without her comment, fictions about her misbegotten brave attempts to set things straight, a revised King James version of what she had said or written in the various versions she had put out about the Iran plot, and one of the more self-pitying versions of how media bias works that I’ve heard.

If this post wasn’t already so long, it would be interesting to deconstruct the tissue-paper fabric of her misstatements which were, so far as I know, her final words on the topic of the Iran plan. For those so motivated, my post fisking her statement is still available on the Strib website. (Although, if you are so motivated, I should warn you that some kind of glitch has occurred in the archive that causes the gibberish string “’” to replace all apostrophes. It’s possible to read around them.)

On the radio that day, Bachmann self-pityingly concluded:

“It’s an interesting thing. There’s a reason why a lot of politicians don’t say anything or are very unwilling to speak up. Especially if you’re a conservative, you’re just slapped up mercilessly in the press.

‘That being said, I have to be extremely careful what I say and how I say it.”

No more interviews
Well, what to say to wrap up such a weird detour down memory lane.

I don’t believe I’ve ever been granted a one-on-one interview with Bachmann since that episode, although I may be wrong on that. Rushbo figured out which party she was in and fell in love with her. The plot to divide Iraq never surfaced. Bachmann now sits on the House Select Committee on Intelligence. And, most impressive, she is widely believed to be one of the three or four likeliest Republican nominees for president in 2012.

It’s a little scary to think that a relationship to factuality as tenuous as Bachmann’s is no impediment to such a rise.

Watching her this year, it strikes me she has become a tad bit more careful about what she says, but she still makes more factual flubs, unsubstantiated allegations and over-the-top word choices than any other important national political figure, although I won’t claim that that’s based on any scientific study.

At the big Repub debate the Thursday before the Ames straw poll, Bachmann said:

 “I sit on the House Select Committee on Intelligence.  I can’t reveal classified information, but I can say this: As president of the United States, I will do everything to make sure that Iran does not become a nuclear power. “

By the way, I hope to add a piece soon about some of the more extreme policy positions Bachmann took in 2006, many of which also have not been part of the current review. One of them was an unwillingness to rule out the use of U.S. nuclear weapons against Iran.

Plus ca change, plus c’est le même chose.

A few last sillinesses from the “plus ca change” department.

When my original post containing just the verbatim Bachmann quote was published, the very first comment, from one of the righty trolls who pseudonymously inhabited my old Strib blog, asked why the Strib didn’t use a more flattering mugshot of Bachmann.

The second commenter wondered why her Iran comments were news two weeks after she had originally made them to the St. Cloud paper.

Local righty radio talker Jason Lewis took to the air to defend Bachmann by impugning my integrity. My recollection is that Lewis alleged that my attention had originally been called to the St. Cloud podcast by one of the Minnesotans who contributes to the DumpBachmann blog. This is true. And certainly the DumpBachmannites are not fair and balanced in their attitude toward the congresswoman (as Jason Lewis is).

But so what? She’s a congresswoman. She said what she said. She never backed it up nor retracted it. But to Jason, it was a scandal of biased journalism.

Lewis described me as “on bended knee” to the “lesbians” who want to dump Bachmann.

I know Jason a little. So, after I heard about the show, I asked that if he is ever going to publicly attack me by name again, he should offer me a chance to come on the show and defend myself. He said that he was under no obligation to do so (quite an expert on fairness and objectivity, he), but that since he liked me, if a similar occasion ever arose again, he would try to remember to call me.

And finally, this week, speaking in her old hometown of Waterloo, Iowa on the day after her big Saturday win in the Ames Straw Poll, Bachmann promised “to be bold, new, different” and on national security, she vowed to “take off my politically correct glasses and look exactly at the threats that the United States is facing today.”

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Comments (31)

  1. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 08/16/2011 - 10:05 am.


    I’d never claim that this is something limited to Republicans (plenty of Democrats have practiced this same thing over the years), or even to those who like to call themselves “conservative” (plenty of people who like to call themselves “liberal” have done similar things), but Mrs. Bachmann has developed something of an expertise at the outright lie, spoken in public, and then never addressed again.

    Were George Orwell still alive and writing, it’s hard not to think that he might feature Mrs. Bachmann in an updated version of “1984,” since the enthusiastic practice of “doublespeak” seems to be her linguistic specialty. Perhaps she’s merely sincere – and mistaken – but while not the brightest bulb in the pack, I don’t believe the concept of “truth” is something beyond her intellectual capabilities. At least as much as the loathsome Rick Perry, Mrs. Bachmann is a practicing demagogue, and, like Perry, a calculating one, to boot.

    All of which is a gentle way of saying the Mrs. Bachmann is a liar, and apparently constitutionally incapable of either recognizing it or apologizing for it. That she holds any public office ought to be an embarrassment to the residents of her area, who could surely find someone just as “conservative,” but more aligned with the real world, if they wanted to. That she will come to represent Minnesota in the minds of many people in other parts of the country is both sad and unfortunate. That she’s being considered as a viable candidate for the presidency should frighten “conservatives” as much as “liberals.”

  2. Submitted by Paul Scott on 08/16/2011 - 10:26 am.

    Thanks for this. If Bachmann gets much farther we can expect the same politically costly merging of ideology with national security intelligence and the culturally costly unwillingness to take responsibility for mistakes that characterized the W. years.

    The fact that a predictable, poorly reasoned, and now it seems clearly unethical writer like Jason Lewis works on the Strib op-ed page says more about the lousy state of conservative commentary in the region than Lewis being anything more than a mouthpiece for people like Bachmann. All he has to do is be better than Kersten.

  3. Submitted by Paul Scott on 08/16/2011 - 10:32 am.

    PS…I found the resentment and back biting that greeted the Matt Taibbi article about Bachmann in Rolling Stone really quite overdone. In my view he earned the right having his name over that article when he called her “a first class bullsh*t artist.” I think he succinctly described the manner you describe here — evasion, then repeating and redressing a tale in a safe environment, then slander of those who call her to account.

  4. Submitted by Eric Ferguson on 08/16/2011 - 10:56 am.

    What’s scary about Bachmann is she seems not to be lying. She seems to believe everything she makes up. She seems truly unable to tell what’s real.

    What’s scary about conservatives is that they give her any credence at all. Certainly it’s hypocritical of conservatives to claim to be the rational and factual people while making her one of their major figures, and she’s absolutely a leading voice of modern conservatism.

  5. Submitted by Roy Everson on 08/16/2011 - 10:56 am.

    Maybe she should also take out her Minnesota Loon contact lenses.

  6. Submitted by Addie Moe on 08/16/2011 - 11:21 am.

    I’d agree Ms. Bachmann thinks she’s speaking the truth. I was watching her on Chris Matthew’s show on MSNBC, when she began talking about investigating members of Congress for having anti-American ideas. Even when confronted with a tape of what she had said on the show, she denied that’s what she had meant.

    There seems to be alot of “If I say it, it must be true” kind of thing with the candidates these days (I’m not going to say it’s just Republicans, but they seem to be better at it than most). Bachmann is the Queen of it, I must say with her claims that Planned Parenthood is running a sex slave trade with girls, with absolutely no evidence to support her claims. Or her inane accusation that the President’s trip to India was costing some exorbitant amount (Probably was no more than any trip George Bush ever took). There are web pages devoted to her inaccuracies.

    But what bugs me the most is how infrequently the media calls the candidates on these crazy statements. Bachmann’s been allowed to dance around the tough answers. She shouldn’t be. We deserve better.

  7. Submitted by Mark Stromseth on 08/16/2011 - 11:22 am.

    Shelley is just plain stupid. As one of our brightest minds said years ago:

    “The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.”

    — Albert Einstein

  8. Submitted by C.S. Senne on 08/16/2011 - 11:26 am.

    #1: Bravo! Great post…It’s only going to get more “interesting” when Swift Boater Bob Perry’s money adds to Slick Rick’s burgeoning cash cache and tramples all over little Michele and big Marcus.

  9. Submitted by James Hamilton on 08/16/2011 - 11:30 am.

    ‘That being said, I have to be extremely careful what I say and how I say it.”

    Imagine if she weren’t. The mind boggles at what we might hear today.

  10. Submitted by Joe Loveland on 08/16/2011 - 11:46 am.

    Fascinating read. I hope it gets read around the nation. Many of Rep. Bachmann’s more well-known misstatements are more colorful, but this one is substantively much more disturbing.

    As I think about Rep. Bachmann becoming President, this tale raises a couple of key questions in my mind.

    1. Did Rep. Bachmann a) misunderstand a security briefing that badly or b) make it up out of whole cloth to suit her political message needs and biases? For a potential leader of the free world, both have equally scary implications.

    2. Did Rep. Bachmann not correct the misstatement and apologize for it because a) she’s too stubborn to admit mistakes or b) she doesn’t have enough self-awareness or objectivity to even recognize when she has made a mistake? Again, either problem can have disastorous implications for the occupant White House.

    This is not just another John Wayne or Concord type gaffe. Those are head scratchers, but they don’t particularly mean much in terms of ability to govern. This is different. We go to war over issues like this.

  11. Submitted by Tom Christensen on 08/16/2011 - 11:59 am.

    Bachmann is a woman with a titanium spine, a tin ear, and plastic robotic parts, none of which is connected to a common sense brain. Pretty soon all we will be left with is the titanium, the rest will deteriorate in an acidic political environment. Bachmann is nothing more that a republican noise machine. I guess the sixth district loves light bulbs because that is all she has done for them. That is a very flimsy reason to elect her to anything.

  12. Submitted by Bernice Vetsch on 08/16/2011 - 12:27 pm.

    Eric, I hope you will submit op-eds (or request that they reprint your MinnPost articles) on Michele Bachmann to papers in the states with primaries coming up, to those in really-red states, and to the national press like the NY Times, Washington Post and LA Times.

    Then voters from around the country could see that she has ALWAYS been this way and that they should take everything she says with a pound of salt.

    Her Iran remark was probably an early piece of the ongoing attempt to demonize Iran’s leader(s) as we did Iraq’s in order to justify military action by either us or Israel. Perhaps she would also “know” if we have plans to bring Democracy to Iran.

  13. Submitted by John Clawson on 08/16/2011 - 12:29 pm.

    It is an excruciatingly annoying mark of Democrats’ political sensitivity these days to always confess their supposed sins when commenting on the sins of Republicans. When we say “…this is [not] something limited to Republicans (plenty of Democrats have practiced this same thing over the years),” I’d be grateful to have it laid out exactly who these know-nothing Democrats are who voiced unsubstan-tiated and unfounded charges related to sensitive national security issues, refused opportunities to be confronted about them, pretended they never happened, and blythely continued this pattern of lie and deception abetted by the otgher major political party. You may be thinking of LBJ or EWK….but neither their sins nor their punishments were anything like what is described here.

    The great fun of this Fall season will be to see how the Nat’l Repubs manage to get rid of both Bachmann and Romney in order to front a candidate who they believe they can work with in getting the job done.

  14. Submitted by John Clawson on 08/16/2011 - 12:48 pm.

    BTW….all voters will want to review the Bachmann essay in THE NEW YORKER, August 15 and 22, 2011. p 54ff. Ryan Lizza. “Leap of Faith”. THEN we’ll have something to chew over

  15. Submitted by Jim Roth on 08/16/2011 - 12:57 pm.

    Whenever I read an article or think about Ms Bachmann I alway think about a bumper sticker I saw on the bumper of a truck in October 2008. ” Squirrels for Bachmann – Because she is NUTS” I think that says it all.

  16. Submitted by Donn Satrom on 08/16/2011 - 12:59 pm.

    I am no fan of Ms Bachmann and clearly she says whatever she wants without regard to whether or not it is factual. But she is not unique about making statements without worrying about any consequences. All politicians, right and left, appear to have license to say anything without being challenged on it. Journalists, rather than pushing back on clearly inaccurate statements, invariably choose instead to simply report what was said. Small wonder Bachmann is not concerned about facts and accuracy when the media seems to be more interested in clever sound bytes than in the truth.

  17. Submitted by Jerilyn Jackson on 08/16/2011 - 01:32 pm.

    Ah yes, the nation is learning what we Stillwaterites have known for years. There’s a reason why she has never been elected to so much as school board in this town. We know her too well. Michele Bachmann operates in a parallel universe with her own reality, but she speaks to that segment of the population who wants to live in her reality and are mesmerized by her charismatic celebrity. Unfortunately we have also learned not to underestimate her. It is dumbfounding that she has made it this far but says a lot about the sad state of politics in this country right now.

  18. Submitted by Joe Musich on 08/16/2011 - 02:26 pm.

    And remember to listen to Ryan Liizza on Terri Gross’s radio show. it would be archived now. Eric’s piece is telling us alot of what locals know. Lizza’s piece gives us insight into her beliefs and motivations. Real scary stuff. I don’t think she really cates if she misspeaks and potentially she may be doing it intentionally.

  19. Submitted by will lynott on 08/16/2011 - 02:57 pm.

    #15, you’re the second poster here who has claimed that Democrats in the past have done the same things Bachman does. I’d rather not see that sort of thing anymore unless you have cites to back it up.

    As for myself, I can’t recall a single Democrat who has taken lying, fearmongering, unsupported horror stories, weaseling out of accountability for them, and egregious shots from the hip like Bachman and her R cohorts.

    If they exist, let the other side make the case. This story was about Bachman, not politicians in general, and limiting the commentary to her antics is more than legitimate. Whether others do those things is irrelevant.

  20. Submitted by Curt Carlson on 08/16/2011 - 04:42 pm.

    To Bachmann and her ilk, facts are simply not important. They create their own reality, and like all conspiracy theorists, they can’t be corrected. It’s not surprising or coincidental that they tend to be mired in charismatic evangelic beliefs as well.

  21. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 08/16/2011 - 05:02 pm.

    Friends, the reason Mickey Bachmann doesn’t get challenged on her lies any more than “W” or Cheney did (and the reason why Mr. Black no longer works at the STRIB) is simple.

    The big-money, self-serving rich OWN the media and can put sufficient pressure on NPR and MPR to ensure that they, too, increasingly repeat without comment what both sides said while ignoring that one side is certifiably out of touch with reality and the other side is speaking verifiable facts.

    Here in Minnesota that buying up of the MSM by the “conservative” big money rich began when CBS bought up and destroyed that “good neighbor to the Northwest, WCCO radio in order to “improve it,” and wiped it clean of its moderate-to-liberal voices all those years ago (and in the process massively REDUCED its market share)

    By the way, the fact is both sides DON’T lie through their teeth, then lie about their lies, because if anyone who is NOT a “conservative” were to take Mickey Bachmann or Rickie Perry’s approach to the truth, the media, at the behest of it’s wealthy owners, would (justifiably) rip that liar to shreds.

    They regularly rip their non-“conservative” opponents to shreds whenever those opponents have the audacity to speak truths that the media’s owners don’t want to become widely known.

    To our alternate-reality conservative friends actual, factual truth tends to oppose most of what seems to them to be true from the perspective of their alternate reality which renders accurate Stephen Colert’s immortal words, “Truth has a liberal bias.”

    Therefore, our conservative friends have worked long and hard and spent a great deal of money to be sure that NO ONE tells the American public the actual truth about pretty much anything and everything.

    Not recognizing their own psychological dysfunctions as the source of the alternate reality which they’re forced to wrap around themselves by those same dysfunctions, they actually believe that if they just make sure we never hear or see anything that isn’t presented according to the dictates of their warped reality, we’ll all come to see the world the same way they do.

    That isn’t going to happen, of course, because the rest of us are not crazy.

    As is already happening with the Murdoch empire in Great Britain, once we’ve finished sleeping off the hangover from drinking the Bushco snake oil (and a long, miserable hangover it’s been), MOST of the American Public is going to wake up clear headed and, once again, “The truth will out,” as the old saying goes.

  22. Submitted by Steve Bishoff on 08/16/2011 - 05:06 pm.

    PolitiFact has reviewed 30 of Rep. Bachmann’s statements (see Five were rated “mostly false”; thirteen were “false” and seven were rated “pants on fire”. That’s not good enough: we should demand to know how those remaining fve slipped through.

  23. Submitted by Luke Soiseth on 08/16/2011 - 05:24 pm.

    Sarah Palin has the same uncanny ability to say something like “That good ol’ patriot Paul Revere rode that darn horse all across America to tell the British the French had fries!” And when shown proof that her version was not exactly correct, remains wide-eyed and says, “Well, yes it is.” Lovely. Suddenly, she seems like the lesser of two evils.

  24. Submitted by David Willard on 08/16/2011 - 06:03 pm.

    Love the fear here Progs! You had your chance with the untested academic with a congress fully in the tank for TWO YEARS! Not to mention the Media who were cheerleading the whole time. This led to nothing but a centralized government and more pain for the average citizen. remember, the larger the government the smaller the citizen. you want to be small? Go ahead. We need to save this country from the left. P.S. You lefties hate women, don’t you?

  25. Submitted by Hal Morris on 08/16/2011 - 07:17 pm.

    It sounds very much like the “Right wing forward” emails that I wrote about at

    and also archived without comment at

    The business about Obama spending billions on the India visit originated with a mininformed Indian minor official probably talking off the talk of his head, but was quickly reported as fact on dozens if not hundreds of right wing web sites/blogs.

    My impression is these things go viral faster and are more full of misinformation than can be accounted for by over-credulous folks playing the game of “telephone”. There is some of that going on, but among the
    emails are elaborately constructed lies. Their consistently good grammar helps confirm they were not written by anyone dumb enough to believe what they’re saying, and given that and consistent patterns in them, I believe someone or some few people are churning them out.

    I am thoroughly convinced that what happens with right wing emails, and what spreads virally on RW sites is not left up to chance, but is helped along by some right wing “skunk works” somewhere. The opportunities for spreading lies without getting caught have never been so great.

    Thanks for the very enlightening piece.

    And by the way, who knew Michelle Bachmann even OWNED a pair of politically correct glasses?

  26. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 08/16/2011 - 07:47 pm.

    I’ve heard that incandescent light bulbs were campaigning tirelessly on Michele’s behalf. Their fluorescent rivals mobilized just a little later.

  27. Submitted by Craig Stellmacher on 08/16/2011 - 07:56 pm.

    She can see Canada from her house.

  28. Submitted by Beryl John-Knudson on 08/17/2011 - 06:33 am.

    “Is this all there is my friend?”

    All that was actuated; executed as policy under George W and his handlers may just leave us with no way out of this present economic breakdown and no clean closure for our exploitive wars-without-end for whatever ungodly reasons. And the deaths still mounting daily; theirs and ours?

    “Exceptional’ nation indeed.

    Think also of the greater mess we’d be in if Bachmann won and was in charge of our foreign policy? Or Perry, the other bible thumping Bobbsey twin? Plus the third one, Romney advocating mix-and-match, church/state also?

    All this could ‘come to pass’ after hearing those corn-fed Iowa housewives applauding the likes of Bachmann; a screaming, “submissive” form of woman shadowed by her Bruce “the lips” spouse?

    It’s been one long, hot summer from Hell so far…

  29. Submitted by John Roland on 08/17/2011 - 09:33 am.

    Donn Satrom and “they all do it” crap. Give me some examples that any Democrat has come anywhere close to what Bachmann says and has not been challanged?

  30. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 08/17/2011 - 10:39 am.

    Not that it isn’t important to document Bachmann’s lunacy, but when she makes something OTHER than an unfounded claim… that will be news.

  31. Submitted by Richard Dahlseid on 08/17/2011 - 04:22 pm.

    Now that Bachmann is on a larger stage and away
    from friendly St Cloud she will find that her
    exaggerations/errors of fact, etc will be pounced on by the media and she will be held to account. Before long she will have shown the Nation what a “Loose Cannon” and all around “Big Mouth” she truly is.

    She will eventually self-destruct just as Sen.
    Joe McCarthy did. She is in love with her own voice and just cannot help running off at the mouth.

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