Why Benghazi Still Rocks Conservatives

Fox Not NewsAs I’ve mentioned before, The Progressive has a feature called, “No Comment.” In it, they put quotes that need no comment. For example, take almost anything from what Bundy has recent said and nothing really needs to be added. Media Matters flagged just such an example today, Fox Promises To Ignore Obama’s Press Conference Unless Someone Asks About Benghazi. In the following video, Fox News was covering the president’s news conference which he was doing with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Fox cut away, claiming that the next question was from a German reporter so they knew it wouldn’t be about, “Benghazi! Benghazi! Benghazi!”

Of course, I’m not a “no comment” kind of guy, so I will have a few things to say after the video:

This all follows from the announcement this morning that John Boehner will form a select committee on Benghazi. This, in turn, was a response to the “shocking” revelations that the White House was concerned about how the Benghazi attacks might hurt Obama’s re-election bid. This is right up there with the shocking revelation that politicians try to impress potential voters. As John Dickerson noted, there is every indication that at that time the White House actually believed the story they were pushing.

But David Weigel really gets to the heart of the matter, The Umpteenth Guide to the Impenetrable Benghazi Outrage. He goes through all the history and the supposed smoking gun email from speechwriter Ben Rhodes, and sums up:

Are you lost yet? OK—the entire argument is about Rhodes mentioning, hours after the CIA had suggested the Benghazi attack grew out of demonstrations in several countries, that the immediate inspiration for the demonstrations was a video. That’s the scandal—that by giving the video all this credit, the administration was distracting people from the real story that terrorism was surging again. Even though the subsequent 19 months have seen no more attacks on embassies. Even though reporting at the time said the excuse for the protests was said video.

So let’s boil that down further: according to the Republicans, the scandal is that the White House tried to distract attention from something that wasn’t happening. This is what is so aggravating about conservative media. It doesn’t matter what a Democratic administration does: the conservatives are going to scream scandal. If the administration really was sandal ridden, the right wingers would have moved on to something else—something meatier. I’m getting the same impression I got during the Clinton years (when I was a libertarian and not inclined to side with the Democrats), “If this is the best they can come up with, this must be a squeaky clean White House.”

In the end, this will come to nothing. But no one will admit it. And no one will ever tell the Republican base. So just like some conservatives still think Hillary Clinton killed Vince Foster, in twenty years some will think there was something to “Benghazi! Benghazi! Benghazi!” Even if they won’t be able to tell you what it was.[1]

The next time you wonder why it is that Republicans believe such crazy things, all you have to do is return to this one and a half minute video. People don’t switch over to Fox News because they are looking for coverage of Benghazi. They are already on Fox News because they flatter themselves that it really is “fair and balanced” (or at least “news”) and that they will get coverage that doesn’t upset their prejudices. But it is Fox News that decides that they are going to be outraged about Benghazi. Note that Weigel wasn’t saying that the Benghazi story was impenetrable; he was saying that the outrage was impenetrable. Indeed it is. But it is completely understandable.


[1] Actually, I think I have a plot for a film. Hillary Clinton actually used voodoo to force Vince Foster to kill himself. Now she has reanimated his body and sends it out to kill her enemies. She had long had an affair with Christopher Stevens, before he left her, announcing that he was gay and running off with Bill. So she sent Vince Foster to Benghazi to kill him. I see a series of films, collectively known as, “Vince Foster: Zombie Assassin.” It’s a winner!

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

0 thoughts on “Why Benghazi Still Rocks Conservatives

  1. I think what’s necessary is that Obama and Hillary Clinton should have a press conference and confess the two of them covertly entered the Benghazi embassy that day, shot the US ambassador and his staff and several thousand eyewitnesses, and then made a successful escape, unobserved, in Air Force One.

    It’ll be hard getting many Americans to accept these facts, I know. There will be weeping and calls for denial, but the effort must be made. Nothing short of this will satisfy the Republican party.

  2. @mike shupp – You’re right. In all seriousness, if Obama admitted everything they claimed, it would still mean [i]nothing[/i]. I think they’ve lost the thread of why they are outraged. They are just outraged because there has got to be something Obama’s done. It is Clinton all over again.

    I’m really keen on my [i]Vince Foster: Zombie Assassin[/i]. I’m sure if I could get a meeting in Hollywood, they would green-light it in an instant. I’ve got a Reagan tie-in now too.

    But I like the image of Obama and Clinton as a dynamic duo, sliding down cords into the compound. It sounds like a winner. Maybe we should start a production company: Conservative Fantasy Productions.

  3. What’s interesting, in retrospect, is that if the Republican’s had been sane, they could have presented the issue in an intelligent fashion.

    "Look," they might have said. "The Middle East is in turmoil right now. There are pro-democratic and militaristic and religious factions at odds. We’ve an interest in the outcomes, but we ought to keep our heads down for a while, don’t get caught meddling in local politics, don’t provoke any faction unreasonably."
    And they could go on to argue that the Obama administration didn’t follow this simple rule, didn’t maintain adequate levels of security, and as a result American lives were lost. Which would be bad enough, although understandable, but that the Obama administration has consistently refused to accept blame for its carelessness, and its spokespeople have produced a stream of lies for no purpose other than to confuse the issue.

    Possibly I overstate, but you get the idea. The Republicans might have given Obama et al a slap, the Democrats could have countered by saying "These things happen, and look what happened in Lebanon under Ronald Reagan. But yes, we’ll be more careful in the future." And then we might all have moved on.

    Instead … all these people are acting like fourth-graders.

  4. @mike shupp – You are right that they had an issue they could use. But as we see in so much else, the Republicans are "all or nothing." Having an "issue" wasn’t good enough. They want to impeach. Plus, because they largely believe their own nonsense, they just [i]know[/i] that Obama has to be up to no good. It’s Vince Foster all over. And just like then, we have dead people who they couldn’t care less about. Except, of course, to say, "No one died as a result of Watergate!" Even though their scandal, such as it is, doesn’t deal with what [i]caused[/i] the attack, only what was said about it afterward.

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