Note to the right-wing propaganda noise machine: Putin is not that into you

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Steve Benen today adds his take to the points I made in posts over the weekend about unfolding events in Syria, and the massive messaging problem the right-wing propaganda noise machine of the conservative media entertainment complex is having. The right struggles to hide its disappointment with diplomatic progress:

WinningA couple of years ago, after the United States and its allies used
military force to help remove the Gadhafi's government from Libya, Sens.
John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) issued one of my
favorite Republican press releases ever. The two senators, who had
eagerly spent months touting U.S. military action in Libya, issued a joint statement commending the "British, French, and other allies, as well as our Arab partners, especially Qatar and the UAE."

McCain
and Graham eventually said Americans can be "proud of the role our
country" played, but they nevertheless condemned the Obama
administration's "failure" to act in Libya the way the GOP senators
preferred.

It was striking at the time for its bitterness — the
United States had achieved its strategic goals, but instead of
celebrating or applauding Obama's success, Republicans pouted and
whined
.

It's funny how history sometimes repeats itself. Over the
course of six days, the Obama administration pushed Syria into the
chemical weapons convention, helped create a diplomatic framework that
will hopefully rid Syria of its stockpiles, successfully pushed Russia
into a commitment to help disarm its own ally, quickly won support from
the United Nations and our allies, and did all of this without firing a
shot
.

Republicans are outraged.

U.S. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) today
released the following statement on the U.S.-Russian agreement on Syria:

"What concerns us most is that our friends and enemies will take the
same lessons from this agreement — they see it as an act of provocative
weakness on America's part."

McCain wasn't scheduled to appear on "Meet the Press"
yesterday, but he was nevertheless added at the last minute. It was,
after all, a Sunday.

It's not just McCain, of course. Over the weekend, it seemed as if much of the chatter
out of the Beltway was an effort to spin a diplomatic resolution as
necessarily disappointing and evidence of a presidential mistake, if not
outright failure
.

[See the AP (All Propaganda) reporting that the Arizona Daily Star editors selected to publish in the newspaper — no media bias there, nosiree.]

It's difficult to take such talk seriously.

* * *

At this point, Republican complaints made a right turn at unpersuasive
and landed at unseemly
. Many on the right urged Obama to engage in
saber-rattling against Syria, then complained when the president did
just that. Many on the right urged Obama to take the issue to Congress,
then complained when the president did that, too. Many on the right said
they supported military intervention, right up until Obama agreed with
them. Now Republicans seem to be complaining … just for the sake of
complaining
.

* * *

If the right could at least try to hide their disappointment, it might
be easier to take their views on foreign policy seriously.

And the Right continues to draw hearts on Putin pictures:

PutinOver the last [48] hours, the right has responded to these developments with one simple question: Isn't Vladimir Putin dreamy?

Um, wow.

* * *

Social conservatives' love of Putin
at least makes coherent sense. They hate gay people; Putin is cracking
down on gay rights; so it stands to reason that that the right's
theo-con wing would swoon over the Russian leader
.

[Wait, Isn't that self-loathing latent homosexuality? As Shakespeare said in Hamlet, "The lady doth protest too much, methinks." ]

But for the
rest of the party, this conservative cheerleading for the Russian
president is getting creepier by the day
. If the right's arguments were
accurate, it'd still be a little unseemly to watch so many Republicans
draw hearts on their Putin photographs, but therein lies the bigger
problem: the GOP talking points don't even make sense
. Obama got what he
wanted last week, and then got more of what he wanted.

Indeed, it
was hard to miss the president gloating just a little on ABC yesterday,
saying of Putin, "I welcome him being involved. I welcome him saying,
'I will take responsibility for pushing my client, the Assad regime, to
deal with these chemical weapons.'"

As for the larger phenomenon of the right celebrating Putin as the new Republican hero, which we explored in detail last week, I think Rachel Maddow summarized the issue quite nicely on Friday's show:

"It`s one thing for the right to fall in love with its own
politicians, to make Ronald Reagan a saint, to make Sarah Palin their
collective fake girlfriend. But the president of Russia, you guys? He is
not that into you.

"Seriously, I know you guys hate President Obama, so it feels good to
have a man-crush on somebody else, but this guy is a president of
Russia. Zip it up, you guys, seriously. Have some respect."

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From the raw transcript (In video):

Scott Lively, the American who pushed in Uganda the "kill the gays" bill, is now suggesting American conservatives move to Russia, specifically because of Russia's new awesome anti-gay laws. Ahead of the Russian vote on the anti-gay law that Putin eventually signed, he published an open letter to the Russian people — [Lively] said that if they pass those anti-gay laws they were considering, quote, "I believe people from the West would begin to immigrate to Russia the same way Russians immigrated to the United States and Europe."

American conservatives should move to Russia. Anti-gay activists in this country embracing Russia and the KGB's Vladimir Putin.  . . . But it turns out that the anti-gay part of the American right, those folks were just ahead of their time.

Because now, a big chunk of the rest of the right in this country have chosen themselves a new hero. It is not just the far, far, far right anymore. It is the right in general, both in Congress and in the conservative media peanut gallery who have decided real Americans should show how much they love our country by maybe moving to Russia. Because Putin is the kind of strong and decisive leader that we want and we love. We love here in a totally different country, the role that Putin has taken in the diplomatic negotiation in Syria, and the big op-ed he wrote in the New York Times this week [questioning "American exceptionalism," a big talking point for the Right]. The way he has tried to throw his weight around has made the American political right suddenly get very "hot to Trotsky" about him.

* * *

[No National Review's Rich Lowry, Sarah Palin was not Projecting through the Screen winking at you.] And neither is Vladimir Putin taking his shirt off just for you guys at FAUX.

It`s one thing for the right to fall in love with its own
politicians, to make Ronald Reagan a saint, to make Sarah Palin their
collective fake girlfriend. But the president of Russia, you guys? He is
not that into you.

Seriously, I know you guys hate President Obama, so it feels good to
have a man-crush on somebody else, but this guy is a president of
Russia. Zip it up, you guys, seriously. Have some respect.

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