Fringe Factor

Fringe Factor: House Republicans Are Just Like 9/11 Heroes

The shutdown is just like Flight 93 and more terrific analogies from America’s fringe. By Caitlin Dickson.

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Distorted takes on the government shutdown, new offensive gay marriage analogies, and more fun theories from the fringe.

Stubborn House Republicans Are Like 9/11 Heroes

House Republicans’ effort to defund Obamacare effectively shut down the government and ineffectively delayed Obamacare. Yet it was a valiant effort, according to some. Rep. John Culberson, of Texas, even compared Republicans’ refusal to pass a budget that didn’t include cutting Obamacare to the resilience of the passengers who overpowered the terrorists on United Airlines Flight 93 during the 9/11 attacks. When questioned by a reporter about the comparison, noting that in that scenario, Flight 93 crashed, Culberson stood by his statement, calling it “a good historical analogy.”

Same-Sex Marriage Benefits? Might as Well Give Money to Pets

Tom Creighton, commissioner of Pennsylvania’s Lehigh County, understands the danger of same-sex marriage benefits. First you give marriage benefits to gay couples who, by the way, aren’t even legally allowed to get married in Pennsylvania, and the next thing you know you’re handing out money to people’s pets! What does one thing have to do with the other? They’re both ways of wasting taxpayer money, Creighton argued Wednesday, as he pitched a budget amendment that would deny benefits to county employees’ same-sex spouses.

Gay Marriage Is Like Incest

Speaking of Pennsylvanians making offensive comments, Gov. Tom Corbett likened same-sex marriage to incest in a TV interview Friday. Corbett was actually commenting on the claim made last month by his own administration’s lawyers that legalizing same-sex marriage would be as ridiculous as allowing children to get married. “It was an inappropriate analogy, you know,” Corbett said during an interview with local WHP-TV. “I think a much better analogy would have been brother and sister, don’t you?”

People Starving Is Not The End of the World

As a result of the aforementioned government shutdown, a lot of people are away from their jobs. But some still have to work without getting paid. It also means that federal funding for charities, such as soup kitchens or food pantries, are being cut off. A lot of people, Republicans and Democrats alike, think this is a big deal. But Weekly Standard editor and conservative commentator Bill Kristol says everyone’s being a bit dramatic. “I don’t think it’s the end of the world,” Kristol said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Wednesday. “We will go right into the debt-ceiling negotiation anyway.” But what about the hungry and poor, those dependent on those soup kitchens and food pantries cut off from supplies? Huffington Post reporter Sam Stein noted that debt-ceiling negotiations won’t begin for two weeks after the start of the government shutdown. “Those two weeks that you wait it out are consequential for a whole number of people,” he said. “Eighty-five thousand people are losing nutritional assistance in Arkansas… Thirteen Head Start programs are closing in Connecticut.” But Kristol was relentless. “It’s not going to be the end of the world,” he repeated. “Honestly, even if you’re on nutrition assistance from the federal government. I believe that no one is going to starve in Arkansas because of the shutdown.”

GOP Rep: U.S. Park Service Should Be Ashamed of Itself

By now, we’ve established that House Republicans’ refusal to pass a budget that did not include the defunding of the Affordable Care Act resulted in the government shutdown. Randy Neugebauer, another Texas congressman, said if anyone should be ashamed of their behavior this week, it’s the U.S. Park Service rangers not allowing veterans—or anyone—into the World War II Memorial, even though the memorial, like all other national monuments and parks, is closed due to the shutdown. “How do you look at them and say—how could you deny them access?” Neugebauer asked a Park Service ranger at the World War II Memorial on Wednesday. “I don’t get it.” When the ranger replied, “It is difficult. I’m sorry, sir,” Neugebauer proceeded to scold her. “The Park Service should be ashamed of themselves,” he said. She told him she was not ashamed and Neugebauer responded, “Well, you should be,” and walked away.