The 40 Most Rotten People Of 2021

I remember breathing a sigh of relief at the end of 2020. After all, a COVID vaccine was just around the corner and Trump was voted out of office. I mean, how bad could it possibly get, right? But now it’s over 380,000 COVID deaths and one attempted coup d’état later and I realize just how fucking naïve I was. So, in the spirit of another godawful year almost gone, I’d like to raise a glass and say “Fuck you” to everyone who made it so bad.

Illustrations by Rob Israel. Visit his store!

40. Michael Tracey

A sweaty, terminally-online Greenwald henchman who did something those corporate hacks at MSNBC and CNN would never have the guts to do: loitered around a college campus while shouting at students about tyranny or some shit. Called Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s admission that she had been sexually assaulted a “masterclass in emotional manipulation.” Looks as if he smells like old gym socks and failure.

Incriminating Statement: “I can barely tweet because my phone is perpetually drenched in sweat and there’s absolutely nothing I can do about it (shirt also drenched).”

39. NFT Bros

In short, a bunch of prigs who believe poorly drawn cartoon apes and lions that anyone can right-click and save are the status symbols of the future. At least when people bought Beanie Babies they were wasting money on shit they could actually own.

38. Andrew Yang

After an abysmal showing in last year’s presidential election, Andrew Yang decided that the next logical step was to run for mayor of New York City. Yang tapped consulting firm Tusk Strategies — known for working with the sadistic NYC Police Benevolent Association — to run his campaign, scapegoated people with mental illnesses, and when asked by reporters to name his favorite NYC subway station he answered Times Square. (The correct answer is none of them.) Limped into fourth place, dropped out, then founded his own party that advocates for “human-centered capitalism.” Inspiring.

37. Nicki Minaj

Said something so monumentally stupid that we all briefly forgot how she tried to bribe a woman into recanting a rape allegation against her husband. Not only did Minaj use her massive Twitter presence to convince her dumb fans not to get vaccinated, she also put Dr. Fauci and the Trinidad health minister in the awkward position of having to fact check an apocryphal story about her cousin’s friend’s swollen balls. Somehow has less responsible social media habits than O.J. Simpson.

Incriminating Statement:

36. Chuck Todd

In a media landscape plagued by bothsidesism, Chuck Todd is one of the worst offenders. Uses his massive platform to run cover for the Republican Party on everything from legislative power grabs to the debt ceiling. Won’t commit to banning election conspiracy theorists from Meet the Press. Routinely tortures NBC viewers by engaging in friendly banter with dipshits like Meghan McCain. Refuses to get an actual haircut.

35. Charlie Kirk

As the bobble-headed co-founder of Turning Point USA — the eminently mockable right-wing student group — Charlie Kirk has inspired a generation of racist, diaper-wearing clods who believe badly cropped memes about socialism constitute persuasive arguments. A political weather vane, this lobotomized Alex P. Keaton parrots whatever conservative talking point appears to be the most popular at any given moment. This year alone he flip-flopped on vaccinations, Juneteenth, and whether immigration is a net positive or a conspiracy to decrease “white demographics in America.”

Incriminating Statement: “The team at @TrumpStudents & Turning Point Action are honored to help make this [Jan. 6 rally] happen, sending 80+ buses full of patriots to DC to fight for this president.” Oops.

34. The Lincoln Project

Grifters all the way down. Fleeces money from liberals for the ostensible purpose of stopping the monster they helped create through years of bigotry. Tolerated a known sexual predator, hired people to dress as Nazis, etc.

33. Matt Walsh

Daily Wire rageaholic who’s perpetually annoyed that he wasn’t born in the 16th century – where his brand of conservatism would be better received. Walsh thinks it’s fine to force a 12-year-old to give birth to her rapist’s child and outlaw life-saving medical treatment for trans kids. Obsessed with other peoples’ genitals. Confounded by pronouns, poison ivy, and human decency. Gives off major dad-pointing-shotgun-at-daughter’s-prom-date vibes.

Incriminating Statement: “The Inquisition has been caricatured. I mean, it was far more defensible than modern-day cancel culture is, especially the cancel campaigns waged by trans activists.”

32. J.D. Vance

Hillbilly Elegy author, ex-Never Trumper, and Ohio Senate candidate who can’t stop humiliating himself in a futile attempt to out-crazy his opponent Josh Mandel. Sorry, bro. Even lashing out at the “childless left” and calling for “mass civil disobedience” in response to vaccine mandates can’t compete against a guy who thinks the U.S. Postal Service is unconstitutional.

Incriminating Statement:

31. Glenn Greenwald

Last year Greenwald resigned from The Intercept when he realized it could no longer hold his massive, undeserved ego — hilariously accusing the website he co-founded of censoring him in the name of Team Biden. After that he slithered over to Substack and the Peter Thiel-funded video platform Rumble, where he rakes in millions of dollars ranting about cancel culture and defending the Jan. 6 insurrectionists. Purposefully refrains from attacking Fox News so he can keep appearing on Tucker Carlson’s White Power Hour. Greenwald embodies everything he claims to hate about corporate media. And he knows it.

30. Mike Lindell

The 2020 election broke a lot of peoples’ brains, but none more so than Mike Lindell’s. The pillow magnate predicted Trump’s reinstatement with the zeal of an End Times preacher, produced three discredited “documentaries” on election fraud, held a “cyber symposium” which one expert said was filled with “random garbage,” and attempted a 96-hour live-stream. I can’t even muster the energy to mock Lindell, who merely traded his crack habit for a cultish obsession with conspiracy theories. This man actually needs help.

29. Andrew Cuomo

Finally ousted from office, not for covering up a spate of nursing home deaths largely caused by his reckless COVID policies, but because he was just another sad, misogynistic creep. Cuomo initially refused to resign after an independent investigation concluded that he sexually harassed multiple women. And his reaction to the scandal — a prerecorded rebuttal where he blamed his Italian-American heritage and played a slideshow of him kissing and hugging politicians — only served to demonstrate his utter detachment from reality.

Incriminating Statement: “In my mind, I’ve never crossed the line with anyone. But I didn’t realize the extent to which the line has been redrawn.”

28. Matt Gaetz

Gaetz was going to make this list anyway for his bizarre Trump worship, conspiracies about Jan. 6 being instigated by “antifa,” and his traveling freakshow with Marjorie Taylor Greene. Moves up several spots because, according to Gaetz’s wingman, sex trafficker Joel Greenberg, the Florida congressman used Venmo to pay a 17-year-old girl for sex. Not even Tucker Carlson takes his calls anymore. If I had never heard of Matt Gaetz and you showed me his photo and asked what he’s famous for, I probably would’ve said statutory rape. Look at him. This dude has resting sex offender face.

Incriminating Statement:

27. Jim Jordan

As the assistant coach of Ohio State’s wrestling team, Jim Jordan responded to widespread sexual abuse by the university’s athletic doctor with Paternoesque indifference. Brought this same level of professionalism to Congress, where he represents Ohio’s ludicrously gerrymandered 4th District. A belligerent Cro-Magnon who defended the indefensible at Trump’s second impeachment trial. Liz Cheney called him a “son of a bitch,” which almost made me like her, which in turn made me hate myself.

Incriminating Statement: “We should be focused on bringing the nation together. Instead, Democrats are going to impeach the President for a second time one week — one week — before he leaves office. Why? Why? Politics and the fact that they want to cancel the President.”

26. Madison Cawthorn

Told the pro-Trump mob assembled at the Capitol on Jan. 6 that it was “time to fight.” Apparently unashamed of his role in inspiring a violent attack on Congress, Cawthorn hailed the terrorists as “political hostages” and openly fantasized about “bloodshed” after the next “stolen” election. A self-described “history buff” who botches basic historical facts, Cawthorn dropped out of Patrick Henry College after a single semester — though not before gaining a reputation on campus as a sexual predator. Bloodthirsty, dishonest, and dumb as a brick, he’ll go far in today’s Republican Party.

25. Lauren Boebert

A gun-toting, QAnon-supporting lunatic whose ascent to Congress is perfectly representative of a party whose political fringes have now become mainstream. On the morning of Jan. 6 Boebert ominously tweeted that “Today is 1776,” and later — as the insurrectionists marched through Congress — she even tweeted about Nancy Pelosi’s location. Rails against the very government benefits her family received because she’s more full of shit than her restaurant patrons.

Incriminating Statement: “One of my staffers, on his first day with me, got into an elevator in the Capitol. And in that elevator, we were joined by Ilhan Omar. It was just us three in there and I looked over and I said, well, lookey there, it’s the Jihad Squad. She doesn’t have a backpack, she wasn’t dropping it and running so we’re good.”

24. Rudy Giuliani

Having gotten nowhere with his attempts at overturning the 2020 election through legal means, Rudy Giuliani once again turned to the mob. Echoing his performance in 1992 — when he led thousands of drunken, racist cops as they marched on City Hall in protest of New York City’s first Black mayor — Giuliani enthusiastically took to the stage on Jan. 6 where he repeated bogus claims of election fraud and called for “trial by combat.” Faced with financially ruinous lawsuits, and barred from practicing law in D.C. and NY, Giuliani has now resorted to recording birthday messages on Cameo, which — let’s be honest — is probably going to be the extent of his punishment.

23. Simone Gold

Remember when you first heard about how the one weird trick to cure COVID-19 was actually ingesting spoonfuls of horse dewormer? Well, you can thank Simone Gold for that. Gold founded America’s Frontline Doctors, a group of right-wing quacks dedicated to undermining the pandemic response while scamming people with bogus cures. According to hacked data reviewed by The Intercept, AFLDS made $15 million — and earned themselves a first-class ticket to the Eighth Circle of Hell — by selling ivermectin, hydroxychloroquine, and online consultations to patients.

Incriminating Statement: Check out their truly bizarre rendition of “We Are The World.”

22. Doug Logan

The CEO of Cyber Ninjas, the farcical cyber-security firm hired by Arizona Republicans to conduct a sham “audit” of ballots cast in Maricopa County during the 2020 election. Chased every crackpot conspiracy from phantom watermarks to traces of bamboo fibers in ballots — ya know, the ones manufactured by China — and ruined the state’s voting equipment in the process. And while Logan ultimately failed to find evidence of fraud, his “audit” serves as a blueprint for other states — including those Trump won — because the goal was never about finding fraud, but casting doubt on the democratic process.

21. Paul Gosar

The creepiest Nazi dentist this side of Laurence Olivier’s performance in Marathon Man. Thinks booger-eating Holocaust-denier Nick Fuentes is an upstanding guy. So twisted his own siblings hate his guts. When he’s not posting cringe on Twitter or speaking at white supremacist gatherings, he’s working to subvert democracy as part of the fraudulent “Stop the Steal” movement. Gosar was allegedly one of three congresscritters who met with Jan. 6 rally organizer Ali Alexander, and even begged Trump for a preemptive pardon for his role in the insurrection.

Incriminating Statement:

20. Chris Rufo

The intellectual charlatan behind the Republicans’ war on “critical race theory” — an academic concept used to examine institutional racism in America which has now become a buzzword for anything that makes white people feel uncomfortable, and which has been used to justify a mass campaign of censorship in public schools. Like some hackneyed Bond villain who announces his evil plan out loud, Rufo openly admits that he’s lying about what critical race theory is, and that the goal of his moral panic is the dismantling of public education.

Incriminating Statement:

19. Josh Hawley

Every so often the question arises as to whether a particular far-right lunatic is stupid or evil. The junior senator from Missouri indisputably falls in the latter category. Hawley is an Ivy League-educated weasel who knows damn well that the 2020 election wasn’t stolen, but insists on repeating the Big Lie because it will advance his career. Photographed giving a fist pump in support of the cretins who ransacked Congress, then objected to the election’s certification hours after the attack. A malignant culture warrior and hypocrite who had the nerve to complain about being “censored” by the Washington Post during a live interview with the Washington Post.

18. Ted Cruz

The worst Canadian export since Rush. Fanned the flames of insurrection by offering to argue Texas’ doomed election lawsuit before the Supreme Court and leading the charge in opposing its certification. When Texas was hit with a winter storm which left millions without power, Cruz bravely fled to Cancún, leaving his constituents to freeze and suffocate, then blamed the whole mess on his daughters. So thoroughly inhuman he has to joke about being a serial killer to seem relatable.

Incriminating Statement: “Let me tell you this right now: Donald Trump ain’t goin’ anywhere.”

17. Alex Berenson

A crank who leans on his background as a former New York Times reporter — he hasn’t worked at the Times since 2010 — in order to provide a veneer of credibility to dangerous bullshit. In 2019 Alex Berenson released his book Tell Your Children: The Truth About Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence — an anti-pot screed so ridiculous that I can only assume it was the result of watching Reefer Madness on a loop, Clockwork Orange-style. During the pandemic Berenson morphed seamlessly from Drug War crusader to anti-vax zealot, using Twitter and Fox News to spread lies about the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines and ahistorically compare vaccine mandates to Nazi Germany.

16. Michael Farris

Although many people are unfamiliar with Michael Farris’s name, most of you have probably seen his handiwork. Farris heads the Alliance Defending Freedom, a rabidly anti-LGBTQ hate group responsible for a raft of anti-trans legislation, including bills preventing trans women from participating in women’s sports and criminalizing gender-affirming healthcare for minors. Remember Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban? The one at the heart of a Supreme Court case that will overrule Roe v. Wade? That was drafted by the ADF as well. Farris was also — surprise, surprise — one of a handful of crooked lawyers who tried to overturn the 2020 election results.

15. Ron DeSantis

At first I thought Florida couldn’t elect a governor more callous or incompetent than Rick Scott, but this moronic swamp dweller just keeps proving me wrong. Seemingly more concerned with “owning the libs” than helping his COVID-ravaged state, DeSantis occupied himself with the usual right-wing grievances: critical race theory, immigration, transgender athletes, etc. And while he badly botched Florida’s pandemic response — banning mask and vaccine mandates, and hawking “Don’t Fauci My Florida” beer koozies — the usual hacks at the National Review demanded to know where DeSantis could “get his apology,” because they’re desperate for a presidential candidate who can replicate Trump’s inhumane policies sans the mean tweets.

Incriminating Statement: “Why don’t you [Joe Biden] do your job? Why don’t you get this border secure? And until you do that, I don’t want to hear a blip about COVID from you.”

14. Greg Abbott

America’s shittiest governor. Abbott’s policies have proven disastrous for nearly everyone with the exception of the Lone Star State’s casket industry. He banned mask and vaccine mandates even as Texas led the nation in daily COVID deaths, signed a law allowing people to carry handguns without a license or training, and defended his state’s draconian six-week abortion ban — which deputizes anti-choice zealots to sue anyone who assists a woman in obtaining an abortion and has no exceptions for rape or incest — by telling reporters he would simply prosecute more rapes. And after a statewide failure to fix Texas’ power grid resulted in widespread blackouts, Abbott actually pinned the blame on the “Green New Deal” which, in case you’ve forgotten, doesn’t actually exist.

13. Jeff Bezos

The founder and executive chairman of Amazon, the online retail giant that reaped billions in profits during the pandemic while treating its employees like cattle. In August, the NLRB determined that Amazon violated labor law by interfering with a union election held by workers in a Bessemer, AL warehouse. While Amazon workers were forced to piss in water bottles and work during natural disasters, this real-life Lex Luthor was participating in a dong-measuring contest space race against fellow plutocrats Elon Musk and Richard Branson. And I’m pretty sure Amazon Alexa is trying to kill your kids.

12. Kevin McCarthy

At first glance the House Minority Leader might strike most people as incompetent or cowardly. And while yes, he is both of those things, his actions — lashing out at Trump over the phone on Jan. 6 only to debase himself at Mar-a-Lago three weeks later, playing dumb about QAnon, attempting to sabotage the Jan. 6 Committee — are also part of a calculated plot to become the next Speaker of the House. Like many other high-profile Republicans (e.g., Hawley and Cruz), McCarthy struck a Faustian bargain with the most fanatical elements of the GOP in exchange for power, and it might actually pay off.

Incriminating Statement:

11. Joe Biden

In his first year in office, President Biden has accomplished very few of his campaign promises — outside of his pledge to a group of wealthy donors that “Nothing would fundamentally change,” that is. America’s deportation machine has slowed but continues to arrest and incarcerate migrants under an explicitly racist law that criminalizes illegal entry; off-shore drilling has expanded; a rogue Supreme Court is on the verge of gutting Roe; and talk of reducing or eliminating student debt has all but evaporated. Doesn’t seem to understand that voters can’t survive on platitudes, and that a lack of meaningful action will drive them into the clutches of fascism. And that’s not hyperbole, folks.

10. Jan. 6 Insurrectionists

The dumb, racist lynch mob that stormed the Capitol based on the delusional belief that they could overturn the “stolen” 2020 election. It’s easy to mock these cosplay revolutionaries — who attacked cops with tasers, riot shields, and “Blue Lives Matter” flags during their attempted putsch — but the fact that the GOP has recast them as “political prisoners” or “martyrs” is a sign that something worse than the events of 1/6 is on the horizon.

9. John Eastman

Even before he was hired by Trump to help subvert democracy, Eastman’s résumé included working on behalf of anti-gay hate groups and penning racist birther lies about Kamala Harris. Eastman authored a pair of fiendish “coup memos,” which falsely argued that Vice President Pence had the power to overturn the 2020 presidential election by simply invalidating electors in seven states and declaring Trump the victor, and which were even disavowed by fellow members of his own think tank.

Incriminating Statement: As pro-Trump rioters sparred with police and chanted “Hang Mike Pence!”, Eastman emailed a Pence aide claiming that “The ‘siege’ is because YOU and your boss did not do what was necessary to allow this to be aired in a public way so that the American people can see for themselves what happened.”

8. Mitch McConnell

Spent the year in typical Mitch McConnell fashion: legislative obstruction, threatening to block Supreme Court nominees, and generally acting like a smarmy, two-faced reptile. Delayed Trump’s impeachment trial until after he left office, then voted to acquit because — get this — Trump was no longer president, which made his trial unconstitutional. Subsequently told Fox News’ Bret Baier that he would “absolutely” support the ex-president if he runs again in 2024. Will almost certainly have a hand in our nation’s downfall.

Incriminating Statement: “Corporations will invite serious consequences if they become a vehicle for far-left mobs to hijack our country from outside the constitutional order.”

7. Roger Stone

A lifelong ratfucker, Roger Stone’s first act of political sabotage allegedly took place in 1960 at the age of 8, when he told classmates during a mock presidential election that Richard Nixon proposed having school on Saturdays, prompting students to choose Kennedy in a landslide. Ever since then, Stone has left a slime trail connecting him to 2000’s Brooks Brothers riot, a 2016 scheme to depress the Black vote by spreading rumors about Bill Clinton’s “illegitimate son,” the “Stop the Steal” movement, and the 2021 Capitol insurrection. A true freak who dresses like a combination of Judge Doom and the Penguin as played by Burgess Meredith. Bears ultimate responsibility for convincing Trump to run for office.

Incriminating Statement: “I did invoke my Fifth Amendment rights to every question not because I have done anything wrong but because I am fully aware of the House Democrats’ long history of fabricating perjury charges on the basis of comments that are innocuous, immaterial, or irrelevant.”

6. Ghislaine Maxwell

Look, it’s great that this child molesting waste of oxygen was convicted and all, but there are a lot of other people who should be spending the rest of their guilt-plagued lives in a cell with her.

5. Tucker Carlson

It’s a sign of just how much worse Fox News has gotten in just a few short years that Tucker Carlson is not only still employed but the host of their highest rated show. An old school white supremacist and frat bro-style misogynist/homophobe whose nightly talking points on “replacement theory” could’ve been plucked from a Neo-Nazi terrorist’s manifesto. Vaxxed and lying about it. Regurgitates lies about the COVID-19 vaccine because he doesn’t actually give a shit if his audience lives or dies. Might actually run for president one day.

Incriminating Statement: “If O.J. Simpson hadn’t murdered his wife, I probably wouldn’t be working in television.”

4. Marjorie Taylor Greene

Inbred QAnon mutant whose sole purpose isn’t to legislate, but to troll the opposition. Every word and deed a desperate plea for attention. Has spewed a laundry list of conspiracy theories which include, but are not limited to, the claims that 9/11 was an inside job, that the Parkland and Sandy Hook shootings were hoaxes, and that California wildfires were caused by a Jewish space laser. If the GOP continues on its current trajectory of elevating the cruelest, dumbest creatures to positions of power, it’s estimated that a Gila monster will fill her seat by 2034.

Incriminating Statement: “I don’t believe in evolution, I believe in God.”

3. Donald Trump

It’s hard to come up with things to say about this sack of rotting lunch meat that haven’t already been said a thousand times by every best-selling author and late-night host. Racist, narcissistic, fascist, loathes the Constitution and the rule of law, etc. What was most surprising about Trump goading his supporters into storming the Capitol in a desperate bid to cling to power is how utterly unsurprising it really was. Should be in prison but will instead end up running for reelection in 2024 because our justice system is utterly fucking broken.

Incriminating Statement: “Anybody that doesn’t think there wasn’t massive Election Fraud in the 2020 Presidential Election is either very stupid, or very corrupt!”

2. Mark Zuckerberg

Silicon Valley uber-douche whose website has fueled genocide in Myanmar and civil war in Ethiopia; spread QAnon conspiracies and Holocaust denial; amplified election misinformation; and provided a safe haven for the anti-democratic “Stop the Steal” movement which culminated in the Jan. 6 insurrection. After the Facebook Papers revealed the extent to which the social media monopoly failed to police hate speech, particularly in non-English speaking countries, and worked to maximize engagement at the expense of user safety, ZuckerBorg responded by simply changing Facebook Inc.’s name to Meta. Great job you absolute dork.

1. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema

Both senators are guilty of the same crime: blocking any semblance of a progressive agenda at the behest of the fossil fuel/pharmaceutical industries while absurdly clinging to their “moderate” label. Despite a slim Democratic majority in the Senate, Manchin and Sinema made a show of nuking the broadly popular Build Back Better Act. Won’t lift a finger to protect voting rights because doing so would require them to sacrifice the filibuster. Even worse than their bald-faced hypocrisy and obvious corruption is that the consequences of their actions will be far graver than a couple of election losses.