Saturday, April 04, 2015


I'm familiar with many varieties of right-wing craziness, but until this week I wasn't aware of Bill Whittle, who's primarily known on the right for videos he posts at PJ Media. His best-known video, I learn from Wikipedia, is one from the fall of 2011 in which he oh-so-originally denounces the members of Occupy Wall Street as a bunch of spoiled brats unable to cope with the fact that their "bad education" didn't make them instantly rich. I was out of the country when this one dropped, so I'm not sure why it collected two and a half million views on YouTube, but I suspect it's because corporate-funded right-wing group were genuinely scared by Occupy and were thrilled at the opportunity to promote any pushback. The video's not very good -- Whittle fantasizes about forcing everyone in America between the ages of ten and sixty to endure three and a half days surviving in the woods, though what the hell this has to do with youth joblessness or corporate lack of accountability is never adequately explained. (Isn't an urban version of this pretty much what Occupy was? And for a lot longer than half a week?)

But his new video (which I spotted via the Right Scoop) is a piece of work:

The first thing you notice is the tone, which combines the self-satisfied condescension of J.K. Simmons's sadist teacher in Whiplash with the skin-crawling creepiness of Christopher Walken in Annie Hall, or maybe Kevin Spacey in Seven. If Whittle began talking to you this way in an elevator, you'd punch every button in order to make your escape.

The subject matter is, of course, the evilness of Obama. How, specifically, is Obama evil, according to Whittle? He's so evil that he's destroying America not by dismantling the military, but by compelling the military to dismantle itself. The fiend!

FrontPage Magazine has a transcript. We start in D'Souza territory and then go from there:
Let’s just assume for a moment that you’re a radical, left-wing zealot, who was raised by actual communists, and who, naturally enough views the United States military as the tool of capitalist exploitation and colonial racism. Now, further assume that through a perfect storm of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, fate, money, power and media bias somehow conspired to make you Commander in Chief of those same armed forces.

What would you do?

You couldn’t very well scuttle 11 carrier strike groups. You can’t just destroy entire air wings, or armored divisions, or any of the rest -- no matter how much you may want to. That would break the spell.

If you hate this country, and you especially hate the military, you simply cannot go around destroying the weapons -- that’s too obvious. But you can do something much more subtle, and in the long run, even more disastrous, if your stated goal is to fundamentally change the country and the military that protects and defends it.

You don’t have to destroy the weapons. You don’t even have to destroy the warriors. All you have to do is create a set of conditions that are so incompatible with the warrior code that the warriors will remove themselves, because these are people who risk death and dismemberment, and whether at the tip or the end of the spear, generally live in appalling conditions, under great emotional hardship, for disgraceful levels of pay.
You have to hear this in Whittle's mostly crazy, half-stagey voice. (Ol' Blood and Guts was actually a theater major in college, and it shows, because he knows literally the first thing about doing effective line readings.)

So what is it that the evil Obama is doing to make the real men of the military leave the service? Um ... boring shore leave! Politically correct monitoring of tattoos! Oh, and, allegedly, a policy that required one (unidentified) major to catalog all the weapons personally kept in his troops'households. Did this really happen? An order that would be a fate worse than death for any True Patriot -- gun monitoring? I don't know -- it seems too perfect as a right-wing horror fantasy -- but it does give the major an opportunity to say (melodramatically, in Whittle's voice): Sir, I will not obey that order.

When Whittle starts talking about the potential for military coups, you'll start thinking of General Jack D. Ripper. And I guess there are years' worth of videos like this. And this is normal on the right.

BONUS: Here's Whittle's greatest hit:


Ken_L said...

At least he's got a better hairpiece these days.

Suwannee Dave said...

I like when he talks about deplorable pay. People in the military get paid pretty dam well, and also get a defined benefit package which is disappearing for most working people

M. Bouffant said...

Does he mention Republicans voting against V.A. funding & so on?

endure three and a half days surviving in the woods
Outward Bound is back?

And is "boring shore leave" a euphemism for the Navy advising sailors to stay away from prostitutes?

Victor said...

Walken in "Annie Hall" had nothing on this creepy bastard.

"Let’s just assume for a moment that you’re a radical, left-wing zealot, who was raised by actual communists..."

Yes, let's assume that the couple of thousand of Americans actually were.
What proof is there that President Obama was one of them?

You've go to love our Reich-Wingers attempts to bring back the 1950's & 60's "Commie scare."

Well, you know, skinny ties come and go out of fashion.
So, maybe the same holds true for scaring people with Communism and Socialism - though, the former is deader than Lenin in his tomb.

Soon - if not already - younger people will be asking, "What the hell was Communism?" "What's Socialism?"

And, our Reich-Wingers are afraid that if the younger folks find out about the latter, they may like it.

So, scare them now, lest they look at the inequality around all of us, and ask, "Why should so few have so many? And why is the system rigged so that the rich get richer and richer, while the rest of us get poorer and poorer?"

And, there's no answer for that. Except, of course, for 1950's & 60's tax rates.
And, who besides 99% of us, want to see that horror again?

aimai said...

Its not true that people inthe military get good pay--but its not Obama's fault. Stories were absolutely everywhere during Bush's overuse of the military of the lowest level grunts resorting to food stamps to pay for their dependents. And the treatment of the National Guard after deployment is a disgrace.

aimai said...

Isn't Bill Whittle the guy who was in on the original "advertisements in public schools" tv placement scam? I'm going to google him to find out.

aimai said...

My apologies--it is Chris Whittle who is the education scammer and Bill Whittle is some other, totally crazy, dude.

Green Eagle said...

As I peruse the internet, it is interesting to me how much of the really crazy stuff- Christian identity ravings and things like that- are found primarily in the form of videos.

I don't think most of these people read that well.

AreaDan said...

His Trayvon Martin stuff was as repellant as you can imagine. Bring a morbid curiosity and a strong stomach.