UPDATE, from ABC NEWS:
The Pentagon did not mince words in dismissing as “absolutely absurd” and “comical” media reports from Indian news outlets that the US Navy was sending 34 warships off the coast of Mumbai as part of the security preparations for President Obama’s upcoming trip to India.
Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell … told reporters he was making an exception to the practice of not discussing presidential security details to shoot down the reports.
“I will take the liberty this time of dismissing as absolutely absurd this notion that somehow we were deploying 10 percent of the Navy — some 34 ships and an aircraft carrier — in support of the president’s trip to Asia,” said Morrell at today’s Pentagon briefing. “That’s just comical. Nothing close to that is being done.”
Credibility no longer matters. Truth no longer matters.
And shame? Shame at being caught selling ridiculous falsehoods and lies? Hah!
Right-wing bloggers, media and politicians have seized on a report on an Indian Internet site, supposedly based on an anonymous estimate from an Indian government official, that President Obama will be spending $200 million a day on his India trip.
Now think about the impossibility of that. Two hundred million bucks a day? As Factcheck.org points out, the entire U.S. war effort in Afghanistan — where we have to arm, equip and provision roughly 100,000 troops in a hostile, barren environment — costs us $190 million a day. The claim is simply too ridiculous to be contemplated, let alone believed.
Yet as the clip above from Fox Business News demonstrates, the absurdity quickly became fuel for the vast right-wing outrage machine. (My favorite part above is where the outraged host, the genius Eric Bolling, insists: “I will tell you unequivocably, I am not making this up, this has been reported, go to the Internet, go take a look.” Really, they gave this guy a microphone and TV time?)
Drudge picked it up. Sean Hannity jumped in on it. Rush Limbaugh has been spreading the meme. U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann went on CNN to condemn the expenditure. And the blogosphere? Oh the lunacy!
I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. If you’re willing to believe that Obama is a Kenyan Marxist-fascist-anticolonialist black racist who hates America and plots its destruction, what won’t you believe.
But seriously people….