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The distinguished senator from TV Land, John McCain, once famously remarked, "The fundamentals of our economy are strong."

That wasn't particularly true at the time he said it, which is completely beside the point.

The point, my friends, is strength.

Conservatives eat that shit up like the brown bag lunches their mommies make for them (with love & kisses).

So, anyway...

Back in the USSR, Vladimir was busy puttin' on his daddy pants for all the world to see this week—because, Benghazi!

Meanwhile, his moves were being (heterosexually) embraced at CPAC, the right wing's annual celebration of diversity, and home to the most important straw poll this side of Ames, Iowa.

This year's ballot featured 26 candidates, who together represent the full spectrum of crazy—from the far right to the extreme far right, and everything in between—and I, for one, welcome our new Koch-addicted overlords.

Morning lineup:

Meet The Press: Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken; Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York; Roundtable: Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Ralph Reed (Faith and Freedom Coalition), Ron Fournier (National Journal) and Andrea Mitchell (NBC News).

Face The Nation: Former Vice President Dick Cheney; Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI); Former Secretary of State James Baker; Retired Marine Corp. Gen. Jim Jones Roundtable: Rich Lowry (National Review), Margaret Brennan (CBS News), Peter Baker (New York Times) and Jeffrey Goldberg (Bloomberg View).

This Week Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX); Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY); Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI); Roundtable: Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Republican Strategist Ana Navarro, Peggy Noonan (Wall Street Journal) and Former Obama White House Senior Adviser David Plouffe.

Fox News Sunday: Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates; Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY); Roundtable: George Will (Washington Post), Former Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA), Former Sen. Rick Santorum and Rana Foroohar (TIME).

State of the Union: Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken; Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (R D); Roundtable: Democratic Strategist Donna Brazile, A.B. Stoddard (The Hill) and Conservative Radio Host Ben Ferguson.

Evening lineup:
60 Minutes will feature: an interview with Ukrainian oligarch and revolutionary leader Petro Poroshenko (preview); a report on the multi-billion dollar "data broker" industry (preview); and, a report on a new $1.3 billion radio telescope that is allowing scientists to see parts of the universe they've seen never before (preview).

On Comedy Central...

Jon Stewart examined the right wing's love affair with Vladimir Putin.

The Daily Show

Monday: Paul Taylor (Pew Research Center)

Tuesday: Andrew Napolitano (Fox News)

Wednesday: Actor Jason Bateman

Thursday: Professor/Activist Anita Hill

And Stephen Colbert explained why women can't be president.

The Colbert Report

Monday: Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson

Tuesday: Ronan Farrow (MSNBC)

Wednesday: TV Personality Maria Shriver

Thursday: Simon Schama (PBS)

Elsewhere...

Televangelist Pat Robertson gave God's blessing to first cousins getting married... with one caveat.

"A close friend of mine believes that the person God wants her to marry is her first cousin," a viewer explained in a letter to Robertson. "There is clear, powerful call of the Lord on both their lives. What do you think?"

"Kissing cousins! Hey, hey!" Robertson replied. "I don't know anything in the Bible that says there's a problem about marrying first cousins. Now, look, here's the deal. If there are recessive genes and there are something in the family that would come out if those two recessive genes come together, they might wind up with children that got some kind of disability."

"Other than that, there's no problem," he continued. "There's nothing in the Bible that says you can't marry your first cousin. Here you say everybody's in favor of it. Alright, go for it."

But the TV preacher added a final warning to "check the genetics."

"You don't want to have some mongoloid child," Robertson noted, but immediately admitted that he shouldn’t use the term.

Meanwhile...

A church in Kentucky offered the uninitiated the means to save themselves.

In an effort its spokesman has described as "outreach to rednecks," the Kentucky Baptist Convention is leading "Second Amendment Celebrations," where churches around the state give away guns as door prizes to lure in the unchurched in hopes of converting them to Christ.

As many as 1,000 people are expected at the next one, on Thursday at Lone Oak Baptist Church in Paducah, where they will be given a free steak dinner and the chance to win one of 25 handguns, long guns and shotguns.

The goal is to "point people to Christ," the church says in a flier. [...]

And, finally...

Michele Bachmann reprimanded American Jews for choosing poorly.

"The Jewish community gave him their votes, their support, their financial support and as recently as last week, forty-eight Jewish donors who are big contributors to the president wrote a letter to the Democrat [sic] senators in the US Senate to tell them to not advance sanctions against Iran. This is clearly against Israel's best interest. What has been shocking has been seeing and observing Jewish organizations who it appears have made it their priority to support the political priority and the political ambitions of the president over the best interests of Israel. They sold out Israel."

That's all, folks!

- Trix

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