Cult of Fools Weekly (Mar 3, 2024) – “Hunter Biden Folly”

Dotted across both the English and French landscapes are various buildings erected in the Eighteenth-century. These are mock Roman, Chinese, or Egyptian Temples. They serve absolutely no practical value at all, nobody ever lived in them or used them for any purpose. Instead they were erected by the extremely wealthy to simply make the landscape look “interesting”. The common term for these is “Folly”. To tag a specific structure as a “Folly” was to quite correctly label it as a bit of utter madness that was a total waste of time, effort, and money, and was just the vanity project of some very wealthy guy.

Today we don’t have an architectural folly to highlight, but instead a political one – The Hunter Biden Folly. This has been erected by the GOP and is seen by all sane people on both sides of the aisle as a political farce of epic proportions, a literal nothing-burger.

What happened this past week is that Hunter Biden attended the closed-door session for the Republican impeachment probe into his father. He agreed to the closed door session on the understanding that the full transcript goes public, and so here it is, released last Thursday…

There are two items I’d like to highlight from it.

First we have Hunter unloading on to the committee with his opening statement (page 13) telling them exactly what he thinks of this utter farce. It’s long, but well worth reading in full, so here he is, under oath …

I am here today to provide the committees with the one uncontestable fact that should end the false premise of this inquiry: I did not involve my father in my business, not while I was a practicing lawyer, not in my investments or transactions, domestic or international, not as a board member, and not as an artist, never.

You read this fact in the many letters that have been sent to you over the last year as part of your so-called impeachment investigation. You heard this fact when I said it weeks ago standing outside of this building. You heard this fact from a parade of other witnesses, former colleagues, and business partners of mine, including my uncle, who has testified before you in similar proceedings. And now, today, you hear this fact directly from me.

For more than a year, your committees have hunted me in your partisan political pursuit of my dad. You have trafficked in innuendo, distortion, and sensationalism, all the while ignoring the clear and convincing evidence staring you in the face: You do not have evidence to support the baseless and MAGA-motivated conspiracies about my father because there isn’t any.

You have built your entire partisan house of cards on lies told by the likes of Gal Luft, Tony Bobulinski, Alexander Smirnov, and Jason Galanis. Luft, who is a fugitive, has been indicted for his lies and other crimes; Smirnov, who has made you dupes in carrying out a Russian disinformation campaign waged against my father, has been indicted for his lies; Bobulinski, who has been exposed for the many false statements he has made; and Galanis, who is serving 14 years in prison for fraud.

Rather than follow the facts as they’ve been laid out before you in bank records, financial statements, correspondence, and other witness testimony, you continue your frantic search to prove the lies you and those you rely upon keep peddling. Yes, they are lies.

To be clear, I have made mistakes in my life, and I have squandered opportunities and privileges that were afforded to me. I know that. I am responsible for that. And I am making amends for that. But my mistakes and my shortcomings are my own and not my father’s, who has done nothing but devote his entire life to public service and trying to make this country a better place to live.

During my battle with addiction, my father was there for me. He helped save my life. His love and support made it possible for me to get sober, stay sober, and rebuild my life as a father, a son, a husband, and a brother. What he got in return for being a loving, supportive parent is a barrage of hate-filled conspiracy theories that hatched this sham impeachment inquiry and continue to fuel unrelenting personal attacks against him and me.

Over the last year, Republicans have taken my communications out of context, relied on documents that have been altered, and cherry-picked snippets of financial or other records to misrepresent what really happened. Examples of this include a few references to my family in emails or texts that I sent when I was in the darkest days of my addiction. If you try to do that today, my answers will reveal your tactics and demonstrate the truth that my father was never involved in any of my businesses.

    My testimony today should put an end to this baseless and destructive political charade. You have wasted valuable time and resources attacking me and my family for your own political gain when you should be fixing the real problems in this country that desperately need your attention. Thank you.

    For my second extract we rapidly move to page 134 for the following gem. Here we have one of the democrats on the committee, Eric Swalwell, taking full advantage by having the following line of questioning read into the formal record. This my friends is political art at its best, and beautifully illustrates the depths of the hypocrisy in play here …

    Mr. Swalwell. ...Any time your father was in government, prior to the Presidency or before, did he ever operate a hotel?

    The Witness. No, he has never operated a hotel.

    Mr. Swalwell. So he’s never operated a hotel where foreign nationals spent millions at that hotel while he was in office?

    The Witness. No, he has not.

    Mr. Swalwell. Did your father ever employ in the Oval Office any direct family member to also work in the Oval Office?

    The Witness. My father has never employed any direct family members, to my knowledge.

    Mr. Swalwell. While your father was President, did anyone in the family receive 41 trademarks from China?

    The Witness. No.

    Mr. Swalwell. As President and the leader of the party, has your father ever tried to install as the chairperson of the party a daughter-in-law or anyone else in the family?

    The Witness. No. And I don’t think that anyone in my family would be crazy enough to want to be the chairperson of the DNC.

    Mr. Swalwell. Has your father ever in his time as an adult been fined $355 million by any State that he worked in?

    The Witness. No, he has not, thank God.

    Mr. Swalwell. Anyone in your family ever strike a multibillion dollar deal with the Saudi Government while your father was in office? page135image1217679536 page135image1217679888 page135image1217680176 page135image1217680464 page135image1217680752 page135image1217681168 page135image1217681456 page135image1217681744 page135image1217682032

    The Witness. No

    If time permits, it is worth a read, but as mentioned above it is 229 pages. (PDF if it that you can down load is here)

    There is plenty of other stuff there as well …

    Oh, and let’s not forget this observation just before we move on …

    Below you will once again find my usual selection of some truly bizarre and extreme claims that have popped up during the last 7 days. Each is laced with my snarky commentary. 

    With my usual hat tip to my various sources, let’s once again now dive into this very murky pool of raw absurdity and pure stupidity. 

    Christian Nationalism

    What happens when you elect a Christian nationalist pastor like Dusty Deevers to a seat in the Oklahoma state Senate? You get lectured about how pornography is a tool of Satan and must therefore be outlawed so that people “can be set free” and give their lives to Jesus.

    • It’s weird how these religious people are obsessed about sex, who is having it, and how they are having it. Meanwhile they show exactly zero interest in helping the poor or welcoming the stranger.
    • “Can be set free” really means shackled by his very narrow variation of religious belief. This hails from a place where “up” is also “down”, “good” is also “bad”, and “crazy” is also “truth”.
    • “give their lives to Jesus” really means “give their lives to the political right wing”, because the actual teachings of Jesus play no part in his philosophy.

    The Family Research Council and Catholic Vote are demanding an apology Wednesday from Politico reporter Heidi Przybyla, apparently for not appropriately sharing their Christian nationalist worldview.

    • For context, her “crime” was accurately reporting the truth.
    • Here are her exact words that they objected to in writing … “The thing that unites them as Christian nationalists — not ‘Christians,’ because Christian nationalists are very different — is that they believe that our rights as Americans and as all human beings do not come from any earthly authority. They don’t come from Congress, from the Supreme Court, they come from God. The problem with that is that they are determining — men are determining — what God is telling them.”.
    • It’s very telling that they can’t cope with a female disagreeing with them and respond by bawling and tossing their toys out of their cot.

    My God Votes Says ‘God’s Avengers’ Must Take ‘Dominion’ Over Government

    Yes, it’s an election year, and yes, the religious right is once again striving to dictate to all Christians how to vote,. The strategy involves claiming that their preferred candidate is the chosen one, and any alternative is evil incarnate.

    RRW has done a profile of their latest efforts …

    Buntrock hosted an inaugural banquet for My God Votes featuring religious-right pseudo-historian Tim Barton as the keynote speaker. In opening the event, Buntrock laid out the organization’s explicitly Christian nationalist agenda, declaring that having right-wing Christians in control of government is necessary to fulfill God’s command that they “have dominion over the Earth and to subdue it.”

    …“Those who serve in office are called God’s ministers for good,” Buntrock added. “He is a minister to execute wrath on those who practice evil, and so we have a line of defense that we elect and put in office to execute wrath. They call him God’s Avenger. All of you who are elected people, I want you to know you are God’s avenger to execute wrath against evil.

    • I can only wonder why the supposed creator of a universe, with 2 trillion galaxies, each with hundreds of billions of stars, needs “Avengers” to get anything done?
    • wrath against evil” is of course the usual BS that translates into “hate gay people”, and “suppress women’s healthcare choices”.

    The Cult of Trump

    George Clooney responds to being labelled by Trump a “Hollywood elite” as follows …

    “Here’s the thing: I grew up in Kentucky. I sold insurance door-to-door. I sold ladies’ shoes. I worked at an all-night liquor store. I would buy suits that were too big and too long and cut the bottom of the pants off to make ties so I’d have a tie to go on job interviews. I grew up understanding what it was like to not have health insurance for eight years.

    So this idea that I’m somehow the “Hollywood elite” and this guy who takes a shit in a gold toilet is somehow the man of the people is laughable. People in Hollywood, for the most part, are people from the Midwest who moved to Hollywood to have a career. So this idea of “coastal elites” living in a bubble is ridiculous.

    Who lives in a bigger bubble? He lives in a gold tower and has twelve people in his company. He doesn’t run a corporation of hundreds of thousands of people he employs and takes care of. He ran a company of twelve people! When you direct a film you have seven different unions all wanting different things, you have to find consensus with all of them, and you have to get them moving in the same direction. He’s never had to do any of that kind of stuff. I just look at it and I laugh when I see him say “Hollywood elite.” Hollywood elite? I don’t have a star on Hollywood Boulevard, Donald Trump has a star on Hollywood Boulevard! Fuck you!”

    Frozen in Alabama

    Liberty Counsel and the Family Research Council cheered the recent Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos are children.

    • No more IVF for anybody as far as they guys are concerned. That should indeed be a big vote winner.

    Tony Perkins of Family Research Council explains his opposition to IVF: “Just because science enables us to do something doesn’t mean we should do it. We should be concerned about both the means and the ends of where this would lead us and it needs to be guided by biblical truth.”

    • A rather embarrassing example of “Biblical Truth” is the endorsement of slavery (from cover to cover). As I often point out, there is even a specific “Biblical Truth” on how to correctly beat your slave. Just because something is a “Biblical Truth” does not mean we should impose it on everybody. Little things like ethics, compassion, morality, and basic human decency, tend to get in the way of that, but hey, none of that ever stopped hateful immoral bigots like Mr Perkins from giving it a go.
    • As for IVF, the bible says nothing. In other words, just because his specific interpretation of the bible appears to say something, it does not mean we should actually seriously consider what he says.

    Now that IVF is done, the next target that Vincent James has is coming up. He declares that “banning birth control should actually be one of the first things Republicans do.”

    • They are now only a few steps away from demanding CCTV in all our bedrooms so that they can watch and ensure we are all procreating correctly.
    • Meanwhile, I think I can speak for the vast majority when I very heartedly suggest that Mr James can go forth and proceed to procreate with himself.

    Christian “Love”

    Charlie Kirk challenges anyone to show him one issue that the Democrats support that is “consistent with God’s law”: “There is not a single biblical issue guided by God’s law that the Democrat Party embraces.”

    Even Weirder

    In a new interview, Christian hate-preacher Jack Hibbs says it’s hypocritical for atheists to object to his recent invocation to Congress. It’s proof, he says, “that they do, in fact, believe in God.”

    • I have honestly no idea how he makes the “deduction” that atheists who object to him must believe in a god.

    Michigan state Rep. Josh Schriver is accusing Google of creating an A.I. program that is “excluding whites” and demands to know “what precautions are being put in place to … end this anti-white racism.”

    • I quite honestly thought that there was no possible way for Rep Josh Schriver to get any weirder. Yet, here he is popping up to prove me to have been ever so wrong about that.
    • Personally I think he is now at minute 14 of his 15 minutes in the spotlight, so his time will soon be up.
    • I’m also not convinced that Google will actually care about the opinion of a white supremacist state rep from the sticks of Michigan. His weird letter to them will be tossed into the round circular “filing cabinet” that sits in the corner of some anonymous Google office.

    Sean Feucht says that “when a Christian lists preferred pronouns in their bio or name tag, they are joining Satan in deceiving a generation that the Bible declares are ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’”: “DON’T PARTNER WITH THE DEVIL.”

    • It must be terrible to go through life terrified that pronouns are Satanic.
    • Given a choice between stuff like “feeding the hungry” or “welcoming the stranger”, he opts to police pronoun usage … just like Jesus would.

    John MacArthur, an influential right-wing evangelical preacher, denounced Rev. Martin Luther King as an “unbeliever,” adding to MacArthur’s history of cringe-worthy comments, on race, slavery, religious freedom, and more.

    • A guy who supports the pussy-grabbing 91-times indicted, impeached, sexual assaulter, and financial fraudster that never goes to church instead of the guy who goes faithfully to church ever sunday … is not exactly a guy who gets to decide who is or is not an “unbeliever”.
    • Reminder: MacArthur is also a strong advocate for planet earth being only 6,000 years old, so the grasp upon reality that this 84 year old has is not all that great either.

    Sen. Tommy Tuberville says we must secure the border so that we can get God back in government: “You can’t do that when you have a million people every couple of months coming to this country that know nothing about God.”

    • Indeed yes, tell the poor, needy, and impoverished pesky Catholics from south of the border to **** off, just like Jesus said, because only White Evangelical American Citizens get to go to heaven.

    Leon Benjamin and Sherri Tenpenny want to hold an exorcism in Congress during the State of the Union address to cast out the “demon spirits” that are controlling those in government: “Just watch who starts to drop.”

    While promoting anti-abortion propaganda in classrooms, West Virginia GOP State Sen. Mike Azinger: — Called evolution a “quickly dying theory” — Claimed there’s a “flash of light” when sperm meets egg — Said all Jews believe life begins at conception

    • It’s actually quite impressive to find somebody this deeply stupid and is also prepared to admit it in public.
    • Side Note: The “flash of light.” myth is based on a 2016 scientific paper that documented the release of zinc that accompanies egg activation. Scientists wanted to see it happen so they put the eggs in a solution containing a fluorescent tag. When the zinc was released it activated the fluoresce and so they could then see it. This led some stupid people to not understand what was going on and so they promoted the idea that there’s a “spark” at conception. In reality, there are literally zero actual flashes and zero god’s involved in this “spark”.


    David Keene, a former chairman of the American Conservative Union which produces the CPAC conference, laments what has become of the annual event:

    “We were open to conservatives with widely differing views but kept the kooks out. A Jack Posobiec would have never been invited then. But this year, there he was on the main stage, and those attendees who visited the exhibitors would find the John Birch Society.

    The conference has become a show with no debates or differences allowed, and its organizers control the agenda top down instead of co-sponsoring up. They have redefined conservatism, and many of the traditional conservative organizations have left for other venues.

    Today’s CPAC is for admirers of former President Donald Trump only — unbelievers are quietly or not so quietly disinvited.”

    • Er … yea, we had noticed. It’s literally just a MAGA cult gathering now.


    Way back in January 2019, Pizzagate conspiracy theorist Liz Crokin said that if the mass arrest of “elite pedophile satanists” didn’t happen by the end of the year, she was going to “bow out” of the movement. Four years & ZERO arrests later, she’s still at it

    • Classic cult psychology in play. When a promised event fails to happen, some believers deeply invested in it simply double down on the belief even more vigorously.
    • If curious, yes Pizzagate has indeed been vigorously and very robustly debunked … but as I mentioned above, when you are immersed into the belief then that’s not a problem, you simply make up more stuff to retain the belief, for example by claiming the debunking is all part of the conspiracy.

    The False Profit$

    Speaking on behalf of former President Donald Trump outside the U.S. Capitol, self-proclaimed “prophetess” Kat Kerr announced that she is currently surrounded by a million angels who are preparing to “waste this place.”

    MAGA cultist Shane Vaughn says … (yes, here he is again this week, and once again he manages to pull something deeply weird right out of his arse)… that God had to raise up Trump because “Satan had raised up Barack Hussein Gay Raised By Transgenders Obama”: “Any time the devil makes a move, Yahweh, God makes an even bigger move.”

    Christian “prophetess” Donna Rigney says she visited Heaven and played with all of “God’s pets.” … “Jesus and I climbed on the back of this giraffe…”

    • Like you, I just have to wonder which specific variety of mushrooms she grows at home.
    • If she was six, then I’d not be so worried about her.
    • I bet you though that nobody was crazier than Kat Kerr … well hey … surprise!

    The Pro-IVF brigade

    The GOP has once again decided that it’s not just Alabama that is opposed the IVF, all of them are …

    • Will their next move be a declaration that the 8 million babies born using IVF are now illegals?

    Hypocrisy on Steroids

    I mean, seriously, after the public smack down the last time Rep. Salazar tried this stunt, she went home thought about it and said… LET’S DO IT AGAIN.


    Quote of the week But it was only a Cross lighting ceremony” … (Its rather telling that this breaking news is not disqualifying for Missouri Republicans these days) …

    Apparently you can now add to the GOP list of policies their opposition to *checks notes* people eating ice cream …

    • That will indeed be a real vote winner for them, they should indeed roll hard and fast with it.

    … and also women must be ignored if their husband is not with them …

    • It may actually also be an opportunity as well … “Dear Diary, Today I used my late husband’s identity to commit insurance fraud. As the police cannot speak to me, they are unable to arrest me.
    • Dear Diary, it’s been 437 days since my husband went missing. Police still none the wiser. I wonder if my dearest regrets lobbying for the law that prevents me from being questioned? That reminds me, tomorrow I need to prune the new rose bush
    • Dear diary, today I mixed up sugar and lead acetate and my beloved husband has since perished. Alas, I cannot inform the police since I’ve no husband
    • Dear diary, it has been two months since my husband has disappeared and my vagina prevents me from filing a report. On the bright side, my new pet pigs have gained a miraculous 200 and some odd pounds since I got them 60 days ago.
    • I do also have to wonder what Corey’s wife said to cause him to take that stance.

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