I Spent Insurrection Week Listening to Steve Bannon
For three hours every day, the Republican coup plotters who inspired the domestic terror attack at the U.S. Capitol last year gather to discuss their next move. On their January 6th anniversary program, the Dead Cops Society beseeched their great patriotic listeners to “Seize The Day. We’re ashamed of nothing. We’re proud of the work we did on January 6th.”
Their scheming does not take place in caves in the Hindu Kush mountains. Nor in a vacated Florida flophouse with an acid-filled bathtub. In fact, it doesn’t happen in secret at all.
You can find these enemies of democracy livestreaming across multiple platforms for your convenience. Dish channel 219. Samsung TV Plus Channel 1029. Roku. Apple TV. Pluto TV. Amazon Fire! You can livestream the proceedings on the web at AmericasVoice.com or catch clips on Rumble. Or listen through IHeartRadio.
If you are a regular working American who wants to overthrow the regime but can’t sneak away from your day job, not to worry, Apple Podcasts is platforming daily mutiny discourse for your convenience 24/7. And as it turns out, Insurrection Radio does big numbers. Last I checked it was the #9 News Podcast in America on Apple. According to the hosts—and these guys would never lie, obvi—the show has gotten an eye-popping 125 million downloads.
Insurrection never paid so good.
The host of Forever One Six radio is the former Trump administration chief strategist and twice-indicted “Sloppy” Steve Bannon. His show is called WAR ROOM PANDEMIC. In the week leading up to the first anniversary of Jan. 6th, I dove into the War Room to see how the OG “Stop the Stealers” were processing the fallout from their botched putsch.
What I found was that their effort to overthrow the government has been undeterred by the initial setback of Joe Biden being inaugurated. While Republican elites try to minimize the events of Jan. 6th, the War Room and their minions have continued to take the coup both literally and seriously. In their view the Biden “regime” is illegitimate and the regime’s medical establishment has covered up nearly a half a million deaths from the COVID “vaccines.”
In 2022 they aim to put so many of their people in positions of power throughout state and local governments that next time there will be nothing anyone can do to stop their quest for power. And this crusade is infused with an unmistakable religious fervor and appeal to a quasi-Christian nationalism that calls it devotees into action.
As crazy as their show may sound on its face—and let me tell you it seems very crazy—anyone who cares about American democracy should take that prospect very seriously indeed.
There’s plenty to criticize about Steve Bannon. He’s sloppy—looking like a regular at the local Pizza Hut who wears the same stained multilayered black shirts every day—narcissistic in the extreme, and a habitual liar. He’s a necrotizing confidence man who allegedly robbed the very people he claims to fight for in order to enrich himself. He was partially responsible for engineering a riot that resulted in the death and imprisonment of some of his loyal listeners. Deadly sins, he has a few. Greed, gluttony, vainglory, wrath. Check. Check. Check. Check.
But one thing you cannot say about Bannon is that he’s slothful. The dude is absolutely prodigious. In an interview with Michael Lewis during the Trump years, Bannon described his approach to dealing with a hostile media as “flood the zone with shit.” And he’s still doing exactly that: The brown river emanating from the War Room overfloweth.
Over the course of the last week there have been appearances by: a doctor who has diagnosed 30 percent of the country with a mass psychosis (not the people you might think!); a lobotomized Mr. Kruger-looking fellow who upped the percentage to 70 percent; a European correspondent with a flavor savor and a bucket hat; a man who wore Oakleys on air and fashions himself a John McAfee expert; Rudy Giuliani slurring before noon; Peter Navarro in a very tight t-shirt; several Republican elected officials and aspiring electeds; and a superfan calling in from what appeared to be a Bannon shrine in Wisconsin.
You have to see this thing to believe it.
In the outro to every single commercial break Bannon plays bumper music about . . . well . . . taking down the CCP. It’s like a downmarket Nickelback and it haunts my dreams. And again, you have to see it to believe it.
The music video for the song features a montage of Miles Guo, Bannon’s foppish late-middle-aged Chinese billionaire sugar daddy, shadowboxing in a sweatsuit, smoking a cigar on a yacht near the Statue of Liberty, and walking down an ornate hallway in a white suit whilst carrying a small fluffy Pomeranian (the second-highest-ranked “adorable little fluff ball,” according to Woman’s Day). Imagine if your WWG1WGA-loving uncle saw “I’m On a Boat” and didn’t realize it was a joke.
After the war with China bops, Bannon moves to ads, which are largely limited to niche products for MAGA fanatics and preppers. Among the merch being moved: Lee Greenwood’s God Bless the USA Bible (Only $59.99), Gettr (which Bannon must have some kind of stake in, given how relentlessly he pushes it), gold and other precious metals, and of course the world’s only fraud-busting pillow which may very well come stuffed with palladium.
Like every good radio man, Bannon has a sidekick, the most recent of whom is a balding, poor-man’s Bobby Baccalieri named Boris Epshteyn. Boris was previously a Sinclair news “reporter” who was too biased even for them. Sinclair dropped him so that he could be a Trump staffer full-time. In the interest of candor, I must say that Boris is not a particularly dynamic or insightful figure. He’s got the sense of humor of a prep-school C-student, peppering in bons mots about how Pete Buttigieg is “still trying to breastfeed his kids.” This limited skill set made me wonder whether his role in the War Room is related to the content, or to other business with the head man. For example, Boris and Bannon have teamed up on a new FJB (get it?) crypto that aspires to be the “currency for the MAGA movement.” According to an appearance on last Wednesday’s program, Boris believes that FJBcoin “represents a primal political scream and a growing absolutely powerful movement” and he encourages listeners to “let your feelings, your primal disapproval, your primal disgust with Biden be heard” by shoveling more money across the table to the same guy who allegedly took their money to build a pretend wall a couple years ago.
If it weren’t for the domestic terrorism and the threat to democracy, the whole thing would be an over-the-top laugh riot. They literally featured a correspondent in an America First t-shirt on an oxygen tank reporting live from his hospital bed about Antifa and BLM!
If Adam McKay put scenes from this podcast in Don’t Look Up, mainstream conservatives would use it to dismiss the film as smug, out-of-touch twaddle. But beneath the absurdist theater is a beating refrain about how the audience is made up of brave warriors who are doing battle against incipient authoritarianism, with terrifying implications.
Bannon understands the maxim that constant repetition carries conviction. Like a NXIVM life coach he reminds viewers over and over about his watchwords for the year: Commitment. Engagement. Empowerment. He tells them that they are victims, but also are feared by the most formidable forces in the world if only they will exercise their power. And he has several catch-phrases that he reiterates throughout the show.
- “Elections have consequences. Stolen elections have catastrophic consequences.”
- “100 seats for 100 years” meaning how a 2022 election landslide could strip Democrats from power for good.
- “There are no conspiracies but there are also no coincidences”—a motto which is helpfully framed and placed over Bannon’s shoulder, next to icons of the Holy Trinity: a picture of Jesus, a picture of Our Lady of the Assumption, and a red Gettr hat.
Put it all together and what you have is a show that offers Trump supporters a fascistic MAGA cosplay where they are the main characters, and the aggrieved victims, and also the all-powerful heroes. In this story reality is inverted to suit their purpose. Anyone who punctures the narrative must have an ulterior motive and be in league with the powerful (((shadowy))) forces who are conspiring to take them down.
From this vantage, the uprising that led to the Jan. 6th riot is not a thing of the past but an exercise to be learned from in their ongoing effort to ensure that they gain enough power so that next time the Democrats, and the establishment Republicans, and the Never Trumpers won’t be able to deny them total victory. And it’s part and parcel with their broader effort to tear down not just the government but any American institution that might threaten their ability to control the levers of power.
To truly understand how radical, threatening, and comically unhinged the content is, here are some highlights from the Jan. 6th anniversary week.
Monday, January 3, 2022
Bannon starts off celebrating having been awarded the title “Misinformer of the Year” by Media Matters and reminds his audience that he had honored the War Room people of the year, which are the “deplorables.” He follows this with an extensive soliloquy about the “total chaos” that the Biden administration is overseeing and reminds the audience about the year’s watchwords.
This makes for a natural transition into the main topic of the War Room: the ongoing coup and the lessons of Three November. (Calling it Three November is a strange Bannon tic that I can’t quite figure out. Why does the anti-globalist icon sound like a poncy limey?)
As part of the Three November effort, he teases an upcoming interview with sponsor/guest Mike Lindell, who is “going to be on tomorrow to talk about the machines, about his program to get the machines out.” When Bannon assures the audience, “We’re still grinding at Three November, you got major movement in Wisconsin, you got a big huge fight with Jake Corman and Shapiro in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Huge. In Georgia lawsuits going forward. In Arizona they are going to move to decertify.”
At this point I double-check the podcast feed to make sure I have the right date. Because the election has been over for 14 months. And as those in the reality-based community are aware, the Arizona effort led by the CyberNinjas to decertify the election is over and was a humiliating failure.
But this was, in fact, a show from Three January 2022. Quickly Bannon betrays some awareness that his army might be getting weary given all these setbacks. So he follows up this hopeless list of resolving the nonexistent 2020 election fraud with this plea:
We understand it is now a grind. That’s why you are going to need commitment. We put that great quote up there about commitment on Saturday, the famous quote: Once you commit, divine providence steps in and all kinds of things in your life change.
With Steve Bannon and Donald Trump and a God Bless the USA Bible, all things are possible.
Bannon’s first guest of the day is the former mayor of New York, who sounds absolutely bombed at 10:12 a.m. Eastern time on a Monday. Rudy begins the interview with this assessment of Biden’s first year:
All seriousness, you can’t exaggerate just for the purposes of being an intellectually honest historian, or recounter of history, you can’t exaggerate how much of a failure the first year of the Biden admin was, I would be hard put to debate with any historian a worse 10 months, 11 months of a president.
I mean obviously [you] could go back to the 18th, I mean 17th century, 18th century, I can’t measure those [chuckles], in our lifetime there certainly wasn’t a worse four years. In the lifetime that we can recall with our parents and grandparents going back to the turn of the century I don’t know who it would be maybe the Depression but that was just the Depression, this was everything. . . .
You might even consider if they haven’t overdone it with Trump, if it was a Republican president they’d impeach him, frankly after this year they would impeach him and even take their chances with Harris figuring at least, well, whatever else she is, she’s an accomplished menace. You can impeach him on so many grounds it would make your head spin including not being competent.
Among the (many) problems with this incoherent word salad is that the United States did not have any 17th-century presidents because in the 17th century the United States did not exist. Fortunately for Rudy, Bannon had to cut him off to read a MyPillow ad.
But the break didn’t do much to help America’s mayor.
After the ad, Bannon pivoted seamlessly into a riff on stolen elections and Biden, reiterating that “stolen elections have catastrophic consequences” and that “this is an illegitimate—and I don’t care if the mainstream media doesn’t like it, underline five times—illegitimate Biden regime.” He then decries Biden and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg’s cultural Marxism.
Seemingly mid-screed, Bannon shouts “RUDY GIULIANI” out of nowhere. This does not seem to be a question.
At which point Rudy returns and asserts that Joe Biden is the biggest superspreader of Omicron. He claims that Biden has
let in more people unvaccinated, untested traveling and put ’em all over America, flew ’em there, than anybody I can think of. He exceeds the Chinese. More of his people have been brought in illegally, untested than came over from China.
It’s unclear what Rudy is talking about. Any of it.
For a few more minutes Rudy rambles about how the Democrats are fascists now and also how much money he made as a consultant for foreign fascist governments himself. Then he regales the audience about the time he got the squeegee people off the streets of New York by charging them with crimes.
He closes the segment by plugging his podcast, but then loses his train of thought and finishes up by denouncing the fraud in crooked cities like Philadelphia.
I’m only a half hour into the War Room. It’s going to be a long week
Next in the War Room is Dr. Robert Malone to recap a theory called “Mass Formation Psychosis,” that the good doctor recently presented on Joe Rogan’s podcast. Before getting to the guest Bannon brags that Rogan has joined Sonic the Hedgehog Erotica site Gettr and says that when MAGA Americans take back control of the country they are going to “turn all the social media companies into public utilities and get like a 7 percent return, and fire all the management.”
Seizing the means of content production. Onward, comrade!
Anyway, here’s now Malone explains MFP:
A leader is identified as the savior and that leader can do no wrong. Think Stalin. Think Hitler. That leader can do no wrong and say no lie, the people will follow them anywhere and be in total denial of the actual information that is contrary to what the leader is telling them is true. And that’s where we’re at right now.
Despite the fact that Steven Bannon has just literally called for Nationalist Socialism in support of Donald Trump, Malone believes that the Stalin/Hitler figure here is Anthony Fauci and that 30 percent of the country has contracted Mass Formation Psychosis, including much of the media and the Biden administration.
Dr. Malone, distinguished as he may be, seems unfamiliar with the psychological phenomenon of projection.
Bannon closes the hour by bringing in amateur epidemiologist Steve Kirsch.
Kirsch, as Bannon repeats over and over, is an MIT guy and a former Silicon Valley executive, not some psychology major sitting around the faculty lounge. It is unclear why Bannon’s anti-elite audience would be impressed with these credentials, but surely he knows his hobbits better than I do.
Mr. MIT is here to discuss some research he himself has been conducting on vaccines. He uncovered data demonstrating that the COVID vaccines are “very, very dangerous” and “1,000 times worse than the smallpox vaccine.” He claims that he was made aware of vaccination deaths that happened within a week after getting the jab. Kirsch cites as the basis for this knowledge the testimony of some unnamed scientist friends as well as the VAERS database, a tool that, whatever its value to researchers who understand how properly to use it, has been widely panned by fact-checkers as being an unreliable source of data on COVID vaccine deaths.
Here’s Kirsch explaining his methodology:
If you go to a place called OpenVAERS and you slide the slider and look at domestic deaths you’ll find it’s 9,500 or so domestic deaths. We’ll round it up to 10,000.
To this rounded-up total, Kirsch applies a 41x multiplier because of the “underreporting factor.” He claims this 41x is conservative:
Typically VAERS only sees a small fraction of the reports so you don’t know what the true number is, you just know what the small sample size is because people will have 41 events—41 deaths and only 1 will be reported. As an example I know a neurologist who has 2,000 vaccine injured and she’s only filed two VAERS reports, so she has an underreporting factor of 1,000.
So by using a measly old 41x multiple, rather than 1,000x—or, hell, 10,000,000x—you can see that this is a reasonable man grounded in advanced statistics. Thanks to his degree from MIT. (Have we mentioned that?)
So the result is just science: 10,000 deaths x 41 = at least 410,000 deaths from the vaccines.
BIG IF TRUE.
Bannon offers some gentle pushback on the notion that there are hundreds of thousands of vaccine-induced deaths and only one guy with male-pattern baldness has figured it out. “You come from the rational world of MIT and Silicon Valley,” Bannon begins. “Why would physicians and good people at the deck-plates level—why would there not be a massive uprising around this topic?”
That’s a good question, Sloppy Steve! Why wouldn’t your average Dr. Sanjay be blowing the whistle about all these deaths?
Mass. Formation. Psychosis.
MIT man then starts playing with the math of the previous guest, saying that there are “only 30 percent of the people that are kind of awake and know what’s going on.” This is an inversion of Dr. Malone’s “science,” but whatever. Maybe Kirsch is just rounding up again.
Kirsch also says that MFP is why nobody will debate him on this topic even though he’s offered $1 million to anyone who can prove him wrong, including Fauci and the people at the CDC and FDA to whom he has sent some very strongly worded emails.
Kirsch then brings out an even bigger piece of evidence: an Indiana health insurance company’s CEO admitting that claims are up 40 percent this year. What could possibly cause such a catastrophic rise in medical claims?
Kirsch has the answer:
“The only thing that fits is that the vaccines are causing these excess deaths.”
This is so obviously idiotic that even Bannon has to take a step off the bus. He gently counters that maybe COVID-19, and not the vaccine, is responsible for this increase in claims.
Kirsch assures him it’s the vaccines.
For a moment I was somewhat comforted that there were some conspiracies too dangerously farcical even for Sloppy Steve. Maybe the War Room had some standards. Not standards that would work for you or me.
But it wasn’t like Bannon would let a guest say absolutely anything, and that has to count for something, right?
Tuesday, January 4, 2022
So I was rather let down when I woke up on the West Coast to find out that Kirsch had been invited back on the show to promote an upcoming anti-vax rally and go into greater detail on his mass death theory.
“I want our team right now to put it up on the War Room Gettr site, let’s blow this thing out, Kirsch’s Gettr handle and the links. I want to make sure people know [about the rally],” Bannon announces.
But before the War Room returned to the anti-vax well, Bannon had some political business to attend to.
He kicked off his Tuesday show praising a random MSNBC guest’s “profound” observation about his strategy to telegraph all their coup moves ahead of time “and then watch as our opponents become demoralized with their inability to stop it.”
This MSM validation fuels Bannon and he uses their anti-endorsement as evidence of his strength.
From there he begins his daily affirmations about the stolen election: “Stolen elections have catastrophic consequences, and look at the catastrophe this illegitimate regime has brought on this nation,” he bellows right before turning to a trio of Republican candidates for office, beginning with, a Senate candidate from Ohio.
Timken is in the War Room to tout her exciting new endorsement from Elise Stefanik, the formerly moderate neocon who unseated Liz Cheney from her House leadership slot on the strength of her full-throated commitment to overturning the 2020 election. Timken tells Bannon that the current leader in the Ohio polls, Josh Mandel, was not a “Trump warrior” and that the other guy, J.D. Vance, said “terrible things about Trump.” She concludes her pitch by arguing that she is the only choice for anyone who wants a loyal Trump sycophant.
The next guest is Nevada secretary of state candidate Jim Marchant, who has come to mutiny radio to announce a new coalition of America First secretaries of state who will vow to get in there and “fix 2020 like President Trump said”—and then learn from 2020 in order to figure out how to go forward.
The third guest is the favorite to take the Republican nomination in the Arizona governor’s race: Kari Lake. She has come on to unveil her new proposal to use the state’s surplus funds to complete President Trump’s wall through seizure of all the unused wall debris that the Trump administration left along the border. She does not seem to realize that this debris is a physical manifestation of the former president’s catastrophic failure to complete his signature agenda item. Lake also reveals her intention to formalize the Minutemen into a state-run military outfit that would deport undocumented immigrants and “shoot down drones.” She plans to discuss this arrangement with the Mexican government.
To sum up: Our three mainstream GOP candidates are focused on slavish devotion to Trump, are openly preparing for the 2024 coup attempt, and want to create a rogue red-state military force. Kinda concerning, no?
The morning’s last interviewee is a John McAfee expert—this is apparently a thing—whom Bannon asks if McAfee had received “a proper Christian burial.” Then there’s a brief segment about how artificial intelligence might result in the “destruction of a big portion of mankind” similar to nuclear weapons.
Bannon returns reinvigorated and screams for ten minutes about, in no particular order:
- the woke corporations
- Joy-Ann Reid and Ari Melber’s paymasters
- organ harvesting
- his rage over China hosting the Winter Olympics, even though he’s not a big skiing guy
- the Rio Grande Valley’s support for Trump
- Biden’s phony studio
- the 1619 Project
- the oppression of “people of color” in “one of the greatest societies in mankind’s history” (here it is worth noting that he is talking not about America, but China).
Next Bannon plays some anodyne clips of Biden, calls him feckless, mentions his “pervert” son, and claims they only “roll him out” before 4:00 p.m. because afterwards the “sundowner” effect kicks in.
The rest of the hour is dedicated to Boris promoting the FJB coin, which is now on two new exchanges (!!), and railing against House Republicans for announcing they are going to investigate why the Capitol Police was unprepared for Jan. 6th.
“We don’t care, okay,” Bannon reminds the cucked Republicans who haven’t fully received the memo:
No, Jim Banks and the Republicans, don’t put out some softball thing that “Oh the Capitol Police were not ready . . .” No, we wanna know what the FBI knew and whether they had informants and agents . . . Get Bill Barr and those clowns at the DOJ that were backstabbing Trump, that’s who we want. Don’t give me a report on Capitol Police, walking around grabbing a donut, drinking a cup of coffee. Capitol police are like mall security guards. That’s not real. What’s real is why’d the Pentagon not agree with the National Guard to get troops out when President Trump asked for it . . . Be a man.
Men of strength understand that reality is what we say it is. That he who controls the past controls the future.
Wednesday, January 5, 2022
In the War Room, time is a flat circle. The January 5, 2022 show has the same lead topic that the January 5, 2021 show did: the “Big Steal” in Georgia.
Before Bannon gets to Georgia he teases an interview with Peter Navarro where they will break down the “game film” from his appearance on Ari Melber’s show, at which point Bannon gets sidetracked saying he’s a little peeved that Ari snubbed him on his MSNBC show’s tenth-anniversary program, which apparently neglected to mention Melber’s 2018 interview with Bannon. In case you are wondering, Bannon is not some beta male who cares what the elites think about him.
The first guest of the day is radio show host John Fredericks, who begins by declaring “the truth will set you free” and congratulates Bannon over the fact that on “shows like ours” they are not just rolling over and moving past the 2020 election like Democrats want. (And also Republicans? Or at least that’s what they told Liz Cheney. Confusing.)
Fredericks is on Bannon’s show to detail a “scoop” by the self-described investigative journalist John Solomon who purports to show that in Georgia, which was run entirely by Republicans, the Democrats were:
- stuffing ballot dropboxes between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. on election night
- emptying backpacks
- and dropping in “10, 15, 20, 100 ballots” (who’s to say!)
Some of these claims are coming from “a whistleblower” in Georgia who came forward because “allegedly his mom told him what he was doing is wrong and he needs to own up to it.” (Sounds legit. Bet his moms is on a healthy regimen of ivermectin and zinc, too.) This young man claims he was paid $10 a ballot and made $45,000.
In response to this report Bannon begins rubbing his belly and says “Oooh baby, I love this,” before unleashing a rant about how “they” stole the election to control a $22 trillion budget. Then he mentions a story about Biden flying illegal aliens from El Paso to Scranton and Wilkes-Barre. This stunt also seemed to take place between 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., which must be when the Soros vampires are working.
Finally we get to the big guy, Peter Navarro, who is there to talk about being interviewed on MSNBC. Bannon proceeds to make Navarro into his gimp, relentlessly degrading him over his failure to more aggressively push back on Ari Melber while the former Trump adviser is forced to sit in his shame wearing an XXS t-shirt.
“What is this reasonable-men-can-disagree crap? You’re in gladiator mode. This is not the Harvard faculty lounge. We are not having high tea,” Bannon bellows.
Navarro meekly objects.
After this ritual beating, they move to discuss their coup plot, clarifying that they were, in fact, trying to take advantage of the Electoral Count Act and that the courts were not the number-one option, as the weak, face-saving Republicans like to say. This seems like an important clarification for the anti-anti-coup crowd.
Bannon closes the insurrection stratagem portion of the morning programming with a descanting sermon on the “late night dumps,” mail-in fraud, and the “red mirage” notion that clever leftists had planted to provide cover for their theft.
It felt like something he had said before.
By Wednesday evening the show had identified two new gimps: Rafael “Ted” Cruz and Dan Crenshaw.
The hour begins with video of Cruz calling the show’s listeners “domestic terrorists,” which is followed by 28 minutes of Marjorie Taylor Greene and Julie Kelly eviscerating Cruz and Crenshaw for not sufficiently defending the Capitol stormers and vaccine refusers.
After a brief Cruz clip, Bannon says “cut it off, I can’t hear his voice anymore.” MTG says it is “upsetting” that Cruz would call these great patriots—who might also be Antifa, by the way—“terrorists.” She insists that those who entered the Capitol “stayed between the lines.” She bemoans that these terrorists—errm, peaceful protesters—are being used as pawns in the . . . wait for it . . . WAR ON CHRISTMAS.
How’s that? Because many of them spent their holiday in the clink. Kelly concurs and quickly pimps her book about the new War on Terror being conducted against Trump-fearing Christian ’Muricans.
Bannon and MTG then close the segment with a clearly scripted assault on Dan Crenshaw and his biggest funder (((Paul Singer))) that they pretend is off the cuff. Bannon calls (((Singer))) a “demon.” Greene says he’s “very powerful” and was probably responsible for her getting kicked off of Twitter. Bannon encourages her to include Singer in her lawsuit against Twitter so she can get text messages in the discovery.
After a brief commercial break promoting the the USA Bible, Bannon brings in a pastor who talks about having a prayer vigil to mark the Jan. 6th anniversary. The pastor indicates he and his flock will be praying for “biblical truth, righteousness, holiness, biblical justice—not social justice—to prevail across the land.” He thanks God for the work Bannon is doing and declares that the stakes are a battle between the forces of good and the forces of evil in this world.
Thursday, January 6, 2022
We made it! Insurrection Day!
The morning begins solemnly. Bannon promises that “there is a dawn that’s coming as we run the tables on this illegitimate president” before inviting on a rabbi for an invocation.
The rabbi asks our “merciful God to not judge us by the disreputable actions of those in powerful positions who are corrupt mightily. Who push hedonism and vulgarity in the name of civil rights . . . wishing to overthrow the biblical blueprint that shaped this nation. We are NOT. LIKE. THEM. Lord, these officials do not represent us. We, however, confess that we have been much too timid in fighting those who wish to destroy this noble country.”
The good rabbi goes on to describe the enemy as composed of anti-white and anti-Christian bigots and closes by saying “God himself is a mighty force, let such be said of us.”
It’s important to not let what is happening get obscured here: On the anniversary of a domestic terror attack, one of the principal inciters of the violence began his program by invoking a prayer that assured his followers that God was on their side and called upon them to be less timid in their fight against their domestic enemies.
There is no way to describe this other than a religious crusade and call to arms. The rest of the show lives up to that call. Gaetz and MTG come on, with MTG saying that we are in our “darkest days” because of cancel culture and vaccine mandates and that we need to “defeat this fascism that exists in control and in power in our country.” To which Bannon says, “Amen.” We believe.
Gaetz talks about how the Biden administration is devoid of patriotism and that this is a day to determine what to do about it. Bannon interjects, calling upon Republicans to seize the day, and Gaetz concurs, promising to walk the cherished grounds that “patriotic Americans walked” on Jan. 6th because “we are proud of the work we did that day.”
In case there is any misunderstanding about their violent, autocratic ambitions, Greene becomes more explicit: “I think we are post-Constitution and China is absolutely ahead of us,” she says. “Dismantle all the systems that are broken and are failing the American people.”
It’s not like this movement isn’t telling us what they really want.
Bannon is back for the bonus hour. He begins with a message to the media and “the left”: “Trump won. Biden’s illegitimate. The more you talk about Six January and how you’re so smug about how you stole Three November. Did I repeat myself? Trump won. Biden’s illegitimate.”
And yet Bannon is sad that Donald Trump canceled his media event today, because he would’ve “bench-pressed” Biden. Without Trump’s content to drive the day, Bannon says he has to fill the gap with his first guest. Who might that be, you wonder?
The Yale man with the Silicon Valley billionaire patron who was once feted by the tippy-top echelon of the American elite. The hillbilly dough boy himself: James David Vance.
Vance begins by agreeing that Trump should have held a press conference that would have “defecated all over this sham.” He claims we are living in a “fake country with a fake president.”
Speaking of fake, Vance is followed by Mike Lindell. The highlight of this appearance is him saying “when you have someone accusing somebody of cheating, they’re usually the cheater” without even a trace of self-awareness.
But the most important part of the interview is not his doolally election claims but the call to the divine. Bannon breezes over the $25 million Lindell is supposedly spending to get to the truth about Three November, and the repeated invocations of the “biggest crime ever.” He wants to focus instead on using this feast day to raise the spirits of the Christian nationalist congregation.
According to the high priests of MAGA, we are in a “spiritual battle of historical proportions.” “You can see evil raising its head . . . All this evil is rising up again . . . When are you going to save your courage for, a rainy day? Right now it’s pouring outside. There is no other time in history where you’d need to get out and speak out and not have fear . . . Prayer is a great thing when you’re praying, but also you need to get out and act.”
Last year the faithful acted.
Today they are marshaling their forces and gathering their strength to do so again.
The evil is rising up and it must be stopped.
P.S. If you made it to the end of this diary (a) here’s a cookie and (b) at the Bulwark we are in this fight with you and if you aren’t already a member of Bulwark+ we would appreciate your support for what we are doing here. You get lots of cool bonus #content but as JVL said last week we don’t see this as a fee-for-service product, it’s an effort to be part of a community that will be vigilant in defense of democracy and hopefully can be a seed that grows something better.