Stupid Polling Tricks: Fox News Hypes Absurd Poll Claiming That Trump Leads Big With Latinos

One of the most bizarre tangents in the 2012 election was the effort to spin all the polls showing President Obama ahead as deliberately distorted by a vast conspiracy of nefarious pollsters. They set about to “unskew the polls” through various methods of mathematical mischief. But all they ended up doing was creating a false impression of Obama’s weakness that left them shocked by his eventual landslide victory. And that willful self-deception is still in play today.

Fox Nation Donald Trump

Over at Fox Nation, the Fox News community website, they are featuring an article with the dubious headline “Poll: Trump Leads Big With Latinos.” However, there are a few details about this assertion that Trump is leading big (or as Trump would say, “bigly”) that have been left out.

The Fox Nation item linked to an article in The Daily Beast by conservative columnist Ruben Navarrette, Jr., that opened with a pertinent fact that the Fox Nationalists omitted from their headline. The Latinos in the poll were not from the population at large, but were exclusively Republicans. So whatever lead is alleged has to be put into the context that most Latinos (about 75%) are Democrats and, therefore, are not represented in this poll. The remainder of the article sought to explain why the premise of Latinos supporting Trump was not insane.

The most important of the omissions, however, was the fact that the poll was conducted on behalf of the ultra-conservative American Federation for Children. This benignly-named organization, according to Source Watch, is “a conservative 501(c)(4) advocacy group that promotes the school privatization agenda via the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and other avenues.” And ALEC is closely associated with the Koch brothers. So right off the bat the integrity of this poll should be brought into question but, of course, it was not. In fact, the poll was distributed throughout the right-wing-echo chamber to outlets like the New York Post and Breitbart News.

In addition to the the poll’s partisan scope of respondents, the sample size of Latinos was hardly sufficient to draw any accurate conclusions. The folks at Latino Rebels drilled down into the polling data and discovered how weak the case is for the claim that Trump is popular among Latino voters. The sample size was so small that it took only 21 respondents to produce the 38% allegedly favoring Trump. A reputable pollster would decline to release the results of such a thinly supported survey.

This is reminiscent of another poll recently touted by Trump that claimed that “Minorities Line Up Behind Donald Trump.” In that laughably useless poll there were just four respondents that made up Trump’s 40% advantage (that’s 4 out of 10). So this new poll actually improves on that abject silliness to become merely ordinary silliness.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

The Republican Party knows that they have to attract more Latino votes, as they noted in their post-2012 “autopsy.” But they still aren’t demonstrating that they have any idea how to do that while maintaining a thoroughly anti-Latino agenda. The RNC has banned the biggest Latino news network, Univision, from hosting any GOP debates, and Trump said that he would nix Telemundo (which is currently scheduled to co-sponsor an upcoming debate with CNN). And despite all of this Trump still insists that he will win the Latino vote, and the African-American vote too. Yeah, sure he will.

Donald Trump LOST To Hillary Clinton And Bernie Sanders In New Hampshire

The typhoon known as Donald Trump continues to be exaggerated by a media infatuated with a celebrity candidate whose psychotic fits are utterly unpredictable. He is covered obsessively by the press mainly because they are hoping to catch him in a juicy controversy or a slap-fight with an elderly widow.

To a certain extent the press has gotten exactly what they want. Trump’s behavioral meltdowns have already yielded tabloid gold. He has fought with Fox News, directed his supporters to “knock the crap out of” protesters, and called Ted Cruz a “pussy.” And for his reward the press provides him with uninterrupted attention that magnifies his wholly manufactured TV fiction persona.

Take the just concluded New Hampshire primary. Trump was declared the runaway winner in a rout that devastated his opponents. The shock registered by the media over his dominating electoral prowess went completely off the scale. It’s a typical exhibition of laziness by reporters who are incapable of putting information into context. So let me do it for them.

Trump-Clinton

Donald Trump received 35% of the Republican vote. That is indeed a significantly larger percentage than John Kasich, whose 14% earned him second place. However, it less than the 38% that Hillary Clinton got in her losing bid against Bernie Sanders (who drew a truly extraordinary 60%). This means that Clinton in defeat has greater support among Democrats than a victorious Trump does among Republicans.

What’s more, New Hampshire voters turned out in record numbers for this primary. As a result, Trump conned about 100,000 dimwitted voters to cast their lots with an overt racist and wannabe dictator. The Sanders total, however, bested that by 50%, with a 151,000 votes. Even Clinton’s losing effort came very close to Trump with 95,000 votes. And yet Trump is considered the phenomenon.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Everybody needs to take a breath, sit back, and reexamine what is taking place. Donald Trump is a blowhard who knows how to work the media refs to build himself up. He is only leading from within his own fractured party of crackpots in a large field of candidates that dilutes the anti-Trump vote. A more realistic assessment of Trump’s campaign will be possible when the contestants are whittled down to two or three (as they are for the Democrats). Until then, we can expect the media to wear their phony astonishment at Trump’s alleged success despite all the evidence that he’s a paper tiger pitching a reality TV character minus the reality.

Donald Trump’s NH Victory Brought To You By The So-Called Liberal Media

The New Hampshire primary results are in and they tell us something far more significant than merely who won. There are some stark differences in the way the winners for each party managed to achieve their victories.

Fox News Donald Trump

The Republican race has been a seventeen ring circus for most of the past seven months. And the reality TV tenor of the campaign is due almost entirely to one man: Donald Trump. From the day he announced his candidacy with a hate-filled speech that castigated Latinos as rapists and murderers, to his embrace of and by white supremacists, Trump’s antics have served to expose Republican voters as ready to follow his racist, misogynistic crusade to the very gates of Hell.

Compare that to the Democratic race where, while there have been some sharp elbows thrown from time to time, for the most part it has been a campaign focused on issues and the differences between the candidates. Not once has either Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders called the other a “loser” or a “p*ssy” or told any of their constituents to go “f**k themselves” (yep, Trump really did that).

However, the truly startling thing that the New Hampshire results reveal is the very lopsided role the media played a in how the campaigns progressed. Specifically, the television news coverage of the campaigns was strikingly different. As Media Matters reported in December, the three broadcast networks lavished Trump with an astonishing 234 minutes of coverage. And during the same period of time from the same networks, Sanders received 10 minutes of coverage. No, that is not a typo. In fact, Trump received more network coverage than all of the Democratic candidates combined, including non-candidate Joe Biden.

Then, when you add Fox News to the mix, Trump got another 23 hours of coverage in 119 appearances. Of course, the number for Sanders on Fox was zero. Even among other Republican candidates, none received even ten hours of airtime. Media Matters calculated the value of the airtime Trump was given at roughly $30 million, if he had to pay for it in advertising. Even Trump thought this was ridiculous and said so at a rally:

“Every time I go on television it’s gotta be live. It’s live. I said ‘Oh, can I have a rest please?’ Tonight it is live on Fox. Who likes Fox? I like Fox. It’s live on CNN. Who likes CNN? And it’s live on MSNBC, right? How come it always has to be live? Why don’t they just cover me like anybody else where they go the next day and they show little clips? Every time I speak it has to be live. It’s ridiculous, but it’s OK. Right? We have to suffer with it.”

The media has been playing into Trump’s hands by treating him as if he were Kim Kardashian and every public move or utterance had some prurient interest to their viewers. Even though his events rarely produced anything that was remotely newsworthy, the networks rushed to put him on live in the hopes that he might burst an artery or slap an elderly widow.

Consequently, Trump now brags that he has spent very little on his campaign but still achieved an important victory. The truth, however, is that he got tens of millions of dollars in free advertising that his rivals had to actually pay. His success was handed to him as gift by the media that he bitches about in every speech.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, got his victory the old fashioned way – he earned it by raising funds from millions of supporters and communicating a positive message to appreciative voters. He had little to no help from the so-called “liberal” media. And this obvious disparity in coverage is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. That is, unless either Trump is caught in bed with a fourteen year old boy or Sanders agrees to appear on Dancing With The Stars.

Rupert Murdoch’s Downright Delusional Twit-Tastic Debate Analysis

Rupert Murdoch is the corporate overlord of one of the biggest media conglomerates in the world. That empire provides him with a vast array of platforms from which to express his extreme rightist ideology. And yet the man who created Donald Trump (and is now his slave) cannot seem to stop himself from posting the sort of stunted half-thoughts that flourish on Twitter.

Donald Trump Rupert Murdoch

The morning after the ABC broadcast of the Republican primary debate in New Hampshire Murdoch was especially chatty. He unleashed a series of tweets that left an impossibly positive impression of his experience of the debate. You really have to wonder what debate he was watching, because his comments seemed astonishingly removed from reality. Let’s have a look.

The first Murdoch tweet was both a general compliment to all of the Republican candidates and a slap at the Democrats. He said “All candidates lifted game last night. Everyone seemed better than alternative Dems.”

This is the first indication that Murdoch has totally lost it. He’s talking about a debate that began with the most hilariously screwed-up introduction ever, wherein Ben Carson and Donald Trump appeared to have been cast into a trance that froze them in their tracks. And it just got worse from there. He didn’t bother to elaborate on why he thought the Dems were so unappealing, but since he is the chief honcho of Fox News we can just assume he’s on auto-hate of everything liberalish.

The next tweet was a bit more specific. He said “Trump better, somewhat contained and more presidential. Rubio inspirational speaker, a winner. But does he have real depth of knowledge?”

If this was Murdoch’s idea of Trump being “more presidential” than I would be curious to see what he regards as appropriate presidential demeanor. Trump was booed repeatedly for boorish behavior including shushing Jeb Bush and insulting the audience. Apparently Murdoch admires a leader who would shush visiting dignitaries and insult voters. As for Rubio’s “inspirational” speaking, that must have been when he masterfully repeated the same memorized catch phrase at least four times as if stuck in tape loop.

The next tweet covered another couple of candidates. Murdoch said “Cruz a great debater performed well, but why do all long-term acquaintances distrust him? Jeb Bush best yet. Easily visualise him in WH.”

Presumably Murdoch was praising Cruz’s debating skills such as when brazenly lied about how he sabotaged Ben Carson in Iowa by inventing a rumor that Carson had dropped out of the race. Or maybe it was when he couldn’t decide whether he loved waterboarding enough to actually use it. And if Murdoch doesn’t know yet why Cruz is so universally disliked, he really needs to come out from under that rock every now and then. As for Murdoch’s tribute to Bush, it was such empty praise that he couldn’t manage to provide an example of why Bush was so much better than ever before.

The next tweet was just more of the same substanceless blather. He said “Christie the tough bullying prosecutor. Not much on big issues. Kasich the safe moderate, everyone’s Vice President. Carson also best yet.”

It’s interesting to see Murdoch actually criticize someone. Especially Christie considering that he was personally lobbied to run for president in 2012 by Murdoch’s lieutenant Roger Ailes. Not surprisingly, Murdoch was soft on Kasich for the very reason he stated: Kasich is (allegedly) a moderate. And once again, He couldn’t explain what Carson did that was such a big improvement despite his obvious blunders. I guess he had already set the bar pretty low.

Finally, Murdoch went off an a tangential tweet to condemn all of the candidates for a shared failing. He said “All really failed to understand immensity of global Muslim problem. No easy answers, but Middle East just a forerunner to sub-Sahara Africa.”

This tells us where Fox News gets its rampant hatred of Muslims (i.e. from the top). Murdoch just hauls off at something he calls a “global Muslim problem” as if it were an outbreak of Ebola, and not a racist assault on 1.2 billion people, most of whom are peace-loving folks who have the very same hopes and dreams for themselves and their families as anyone else.

This Twitter rant exposes Murdoch’s obvious biases, both politically and personally. The fact that he can run a “news” network that is laughably described as “fair and balanced” without being ostracized from the ranks of honest journalists is testimony to how distorted the media has become. Of course, anyone who has paid much attention to Fox News already realizes that it is nothing but a propaganda outlet that seeks to disinform the already intellectually weak and frighten them into a state where they can be manipulated – just like any other cult.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.


The Hive Mind Of Donald Trump And The GOP Was Cultivated By Fox News

The emergence of a villainous dystopian character like Donald Trump might seem like a grotesque aberration of the political process and, in fact, it is. But it is not wholly unexpected when put into context by the events that preceded his arrival and the purposeful efforts of a rogue media empire’s desire to manipulate and control a significant segment of the population. With that in mind, the blind obedience to a perverse doctrine becomes much easier to understand.

Donald Trump

Trump’s disciples don’t care that he is a flagrant racist who has demonstrated his prejudice against African-Americans, Latinos, Muslims, and women. They aren’t put off by his promises to commit war crimes against women and children in Syria and Iraq. They let slide that he isn’t bothered by being compared to Hitler. And no matter how much he lies they just brush it off and keep applauding like slap-happy seals (See the Trump Bullshitopedia) They even applaud when he insults them as mindless baboons saying that…

“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters. OK? It’s like, incredible.”

Trump’s followers are so zealous and undiscerning that he could tell them to burn down a church and they would comply. He could tell them to block access to polling places. He could tell them to steal the coats of protesters and throw them out into the cold. Oh wait, he actually did do that. He also ordered them to “knock the crap out of” protesters at one of his rallies and he told New Hampshire businesses that they could “go f**k themselves.” So it isn’t far-fetched to imagine that if he told them to drink cyanide-laced Kool-Aid they would raises their glasses to toast him before chugging down the poisonous cocktail.

It is that sort of unquestioning devotion that forms the foundation of every successful cult. And those components were built into Fox News from its inception. In an effort to document this phenomenon, News Corpse published a collection of articles that highlighted the deception, propaganda, and outright lies disseminated by the Fox News community website, Fox Nation. The second volume of this series was dubbed “Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult Of Ignorance.” Every chapter is fully verified by reputable sources and exposes the website for its shameful dishonesty and lack of ethics. It reveals the concerted effort by wealthy and powerful media fabulists that is aimed at crippling the intelligence of the willfully dimwitted. It is a great resource for proving to your Fox-deluded friends and family what a den of deceit it is.

Fox Nation vs. Reality

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Cult of Ignorance. Available now at Amazon.

Here is an excerpt from the introduction:

Two years ago the first volume of Fox Nation vs. Reality was published revealing an Internet operation that was dedicated to fiercely partisan, right-wing distortions of the truth. Its mission was, and remains, to construct a safe haven for the broader Fox News community to reinforce their preferred fantasies and unfounded preconceptions. The articles aggregated there were from the fringiest sources (i.e. Daily Caller, Alex Jones’ Infowars, Breitbart News, etc.) and often contained nothing but easily disproved falsehoods and rank defamation of liberals.

Since then Fox Nation has evolved into an even more sheltered environment that has taken on many characteristics of culthood. It is a pattern they adopted from their parent, Fox News, where the slogan “fair and balanced” was an implicit condemnation of all other news sources as being neither. Recognizing that the prime directive of a cult is to convince your followers that your version of reality is the only true version and that all others are agents of deception, Fox segregated their disciples to prevent them from being contaminated by impure thoughts, otherwise known as facts.

Some of the enlightening, infuriating, and entertaining chapters include:

  • Obama’s Imaginary Foreign Fundraising
  • Paranoid Gun Nuts Go Wild
  • Night Of The Living Tea Party
  • The Poor Have It Way Too Good
  • Was Benghazi A Koch Brothers Plot?
  • Zombie Reagan’s Fake Declaration Of War

Check out the reviews on Amazon to get an idea of what previous readers have had to say. On a platform that is notorious for focused criticism it has maintained an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars.

Purchasing Fox Nation vs. Reality is a great way to support this website and the work done here to reveal the malignancy of conservative media. Plus, it makes a wonderful Valentine’s Day gift. And as always, your continued support and patronage is very much appreciated.

Really? Fox News Thinks Rachel Maddow Is Too Biased To Moderate A Debate

Howard Kurtz, host of MediaBuzz on Fox News, wrote a column today that might have consumed the world’s supply of chutzpah. In the column Kurtz took MSNBC to task for having the audacity to let their biggest star, Rachel Maddow, co-moderate a Democratic debate. Of course, that’s something that Fox has done itself with their hot property, Megyn Kelly, but never mind that. Kurtz is very upset.

Megyn Kelly

The headline of the article asked this pressing question: “Why did MSNBC put Rachel Maddow on the debate stage?” The question was apparently so easy to answer that Kurtz managed to handle it all by himself.

Kurtz: Rachel Maddow did a pretty good job in questioning Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders at MSNBC’s Democratic debate last night. (…) She is smart and passionate, a Rhodes scholar with a deep knowledge of the issues. She did not roll over for Clinton during a recent interview on her prime-time show.

Well, with a track record like that she should never be allowed anywhere near a candidate debate. The last thing Fox would want is a smart, knowledgeable, fair person to facilitate a political discussion. That certainly isn’t the way they do it. Fox has taken great pains to make sure that all of their presenters are cut from the same moldy conservative cloth. And yet, Kurtz can still pose this scenario as if it weren’t utterly oblivious to reality:

“Imagine the reaction on the left if the Fox News moderators at a debate were Bret Baier and Sean Hannity, an unabashed conservative. The criticism of Fox for fielding such a team would have been intense.”

Of course, the truth is that Fox’s moderators are unabashed conservatives, which I’ll get to in a moment. But first it is important to note that Kurtz couldn’t simply praise for Maddow without qualifying it by insisting that, despite her evident skills “she shouldn’t have been on that stage as a moderator,” and that “she should not have been put in that position,” because “she is an unabashedly liberal commentator who rips the Republicans every night on her program.”

If that is their criteria for choosing debate moderators then Fox has some explaining to do. Their own debate moderators have included relentless liberal bashers like Megyn Kelly, one of the most stridently partisan purveyors of propaganda on the Republican PR channel (aka Fox News). She spreads more lies about Benghazi than any of her Fox colleagues (and that’s saying something). She was caught leading a discussion that was based on a series of “Fox Facts” that were cribbed directly from a Republican National Committee press release. She made a point of informing her viewers that it was a fact that both Jesus and Santa Claus were white.

Media Matters did a survey a couple of years back that showed that Kelly “has hosted conservatives (56%) significantly more often than progressives (18%) and has surpassed even Fox’s Hannity in its divide between guests on the left and right.” That’s the same Hannity that Kurtz used in his imaginary scenario about unabashed conservatives. And in March she will host her third debate on Fox News.

Also moderating for Fox was Neil Cavuto, the Glenn Beck of business news. His first question in the debate he moderated asked the candidates which of their economic plans God would endorse. He has made it his mission to castigate low-income Americans as sponges and leeches who are actually living the good life at the expense of the one-percent. He is a committed climate-change denier. And he frequently has segments about alleged government waste that usually turns out to be completely bogus (like this on about the famous shrimp on a treadmill).

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

With blatantly biased moderators like this on Fox, Kurtz has the gall to complain about Maddow, even as he admits that she has all the qualifications for a moderator and that she acquitted herself well. What more does he want? His complaint obviously doesn’t have anything to do with Maddow’s ability to perform with proficiency and fairness, so the only thing left to explain why he would devote a column to this whining is his own bias and partisanship. Or perhaps he was ordered to do it by his boss, Roger Ailes, as a slap at Megyn Kelly’s time period competition. Expect to see more of this Maddow bashing on his Sunday morning program.

Bill O’Reilly Says American Journalism Is On The Verge Of Collapse, And He Should Know

Every now and then a crumb of truth falls from the lips of a Fox News propagandist, usually without him or her even knowing it. The latest example of that came last night when Bill O’Reilly sought to lay the blame for Ted Cruz’s dishonest campaigning at the feet of CNN.

Fox News Bill O'Reilly

The backstory is that Cruz’s team spread a rumor that Ben Carson was ending his campaign just as the Iowa caucuses were about to begin voting. That news bite doesn’t really have much significance since Carson’s supporters would hardly move the dial on the caucus results. But it didn’t stop Donald Trump from making ridiculous claims that the tactic had hurt him and he was threatening to sue.

Now Bill O’Reilly is picking up the baton to beat CNN with (video below). He is making a wholly unsupported argument that it was CNN that created the whole controversy. O’Reilly began by asserting that CNN’s Chris Moody “tweeted misleading information about the Carson campaign.” That was O’Reilly’s first lie. Moody simply tweeted that “Carson won’t go to NH/SC, but instead will head home to Florida for some R&R. He’ll be in DC Thursday for the National Prayer Breakfast.” O’Reilly said that tweet was “Flat out untrue.” And if it weren’t for the fact that it was entirely true, O’Reilly would have been right.

Moody followed his tweet seconds later with one saying that “Ben Carson’s campaign tells me he plans to stay in the race beyond Iowa no matter what the results are tonight.” O’Reilly didn’t bother to report that and went on to assert that “There is no question that CNN is responsible for the false report.” But no matter how many times he repeats that lie, it will not become true. However, O’Reilly did stumble into a factual statement that deserves recognition:

“Talking Points has said it many times: The state of American journalism is on the verge of collapse. Ideology has permeated hard news coverage and honest reporting is becoming almost scarce. Especially in political circles.”

And if anyone should know about the scarcity of honest reporting it’s Bill O’Reilly. He has a trademark on it and he is demonstrating beautifully the collapse of American journalism. It’s funny that whenever anyone on Fox criticizes the dishonest media they seem to forget that the most significant new development in modern journalism has been the rise of Fox News. Ya think there’s a connection? The truth about the CNN report is that they relayed information about Carson that was unambiguously true. Moody’s tweets were totally accurate, and they were followed up on the air by CNN’s Dana Bash who said that…

Ben Carson is gonna go back to Florida, his home, regardless of how he does tonight here in Iowa. He’s gonna go there for several days and then afterwards he’s not gonna go to South Carolina, he’s not gonna go to New Hampshire, he’s gonna come to Washington, D.C. And he’s gonna do that because the National Prayer Breakfast is on Thursday […] If you want to signal to your supporters that you want it, that you’re hungry for it, that you want them to get out and campaign, you’ve gotta be out there and doing it too. And he’s not doing it. It’s very unusual.

She never said that Carson was suspending his campaign. She was simply reporting factually on his immediate schedule and the fact that most contested campaigns do not set aside several days to leave the campaign trail when so much is at stake. That doesn’t mean that he’s closing up shop. It just means that he might be taking a strategic risk. It was the Cruz campaign that spun that into a rumor about Carson calling it quits.

All of the facts enumerated here were available to O’Reilly at the time he broadcast his attack on CNN. He simply refused to pay attention to any fact that interfered with his predetermined intention to disparage his competitors at CNN. And he knows quite well that his ill-informed audience will eat up his lies without question.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

After the news broke regarding Cruz’s smarmy tactics, Carson called on Cruz to demand the resignation of anyone on his staff who participated in spreading the rumor. However, today there is more news about the Carson campaign that wasn’t available previously. The Washington Post is reporting that Carson’s campaign funds are drying up and as a result he has fired 50% of his staff. Now that doesn’t necessarily mean that his campaign is over either, but it sure looks like it’s headed in that direction. And in the end, it may actually be the explanation for why he took the unusual step of heading home to Florida rather than going straight to New Hampshire.

ObamaCare Liars On Fox News Get Bitchslapped – On Fox News

There has been an aura of the absurd permeating this election season for many months. And it isn’t all connected to Donald Trump (although that’s a huuuuge part of it). The circus atmosphere of the Republican contest has exceeded all bounds of reason. They are calling each other liars, flip-floppers, and worst of all, Republicans. Who would have thought a year ago the the foulest insult that could be aimed at a Republican would be the accusation of being an “establishment” member of your own party?

ObamaCare

Amidst the turmoil and tantrums, Fox News, the staunchest evangelist of right-wing gospel, has itself come under pressure from within their own congregation. Most notably Donald Trump has pounded the network as unfair, unbalanced, and rife with dummies, losers, and bimbos. And he’s not the only wingnut taking swings at the conservatives favorite network. Everyone from Rush Limbaugh, to Glenn Beck to Ann Coulter has hurled broadsides at Fox. Well, those critics are not going to be happy about what happened the past couple days on the channel that had made destroying ObamaCare its prime directive.

Like most Republicans, Ted Cruz (R-TX) has feverishly attacked ObamaCare and promised its repeal if he were to be elected. This week he reiterated the demonstrably false GOP dogma that Obamacare was “the biggest job-killer in the country.” And when the subject came up on Bill O’Reilly’s show it did not receive the typical mindless thrashing that is the hallmark of Fox’s coverage.

O’Reilly noted that the Associated Press fact-checked Cruz and found that, not only was his statement false, the opposite was true. More jobs were created (over 13 million) simultaneous with an increase of nearly 17 million people getting health insurance who were not able to get it before ObamaCare. However, O’Reilly went on to cite dubious statistics that muted the beneficial aftermath of ObamaCare.

In response, his guest/victim, Kirsten Powers, disputed O’Reilly’s numbers, but also argued that even he were right “you have to make the connection that it was caused by Obamacare, and I don’t think that Cruz has made that connection.” Unfazed by facts, O’Reilly continued to muddy the debate by baselessly asserting that both sides have valid arguments. To which Powers replied with specific examples of conservative studies that affirm the positive impact of ObamaCare on employment. Characteristically, O’Reilly refused to budge, even while failing to offer a substantive rebuttal. He closed with a weak concession that Cruz ought to have sourced his data which, of course, O’Reilly himself didn’t do.

Today on Fox News Sunday the same issue was discussed. Ted Cruz was interviewed and given an opportunity to defend his own false allegations. He faced Fox’s Chris Wallace who surprisingly confronted him with the facts. Cruz typically dodged the question with a knee-jerk slam on the “liberal” media.

Wallace: The fact checkers say you’re wrong. Since that law went into effect, the unemployment rate fell from 9.9% to 5% as 13 million new jobs were created, and 16.3 million people who were previously uninsured now have coverage.
Cruz: Fact checkers are not fair and impartial. They are liberal editorial journalists. And they have made it their mission to defend Obamacare.

Of course. Everyone knows that fact-checkers have always been biased proponents of recklessly doling out healthcare to any slob that was dumb enough to get sick. Cruz’s notion that fact-checkers are not actually checking facts is a lunacy that is reminiscent of the Romney campaign in 2012 when his pollster declared that “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers [who have] jumped the shark.” Republicans keep admitting that the truth is of no use to them. And in that spirit the answer Cruz gave ignored the facts entirely, offered no alternative data to confirm his view, and then veered wildly off topic. Then he became obstinate and angry when Wallace pressed him to address the subject at hand.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Veteran Fox-watcher Gabriel Sherman of New York Magazine has reported that personality issues and infighting have left Fox News grasping to shape an image during this campaign. But that is only part of the explanation for their spongy positions on matters that were once hard-coded. The viciousness exhibited by the Republican candidates toward one another presents an inherent conflict for a network that is so accustomed to agreeing with whatever the guy on the right said. Now they’re struck with the dilemma of who to suck up to if the choices are all right-wingers? And that predicament has left them confused and unprepared when a marginally progressive argument is dropped in their lap. They are simply so befuddled that they can’t keep their stories straight. Let’s hope this lasts until November.

The Republican Party Is SCARED WITLESS Of The Donald Trump-enstein They Created

From the earliest planning stages of the 2016 Republican primary, the party has demonstrated a foreboding fear of the public finding out anything useful about their candidates. To the contrary, they are more worried that what voters might learn will only make them nauseous. So the party honchos severely shortened the debate schedule and limited media access to friendly venues, particularly Fox News which was given more of the debates (five in all) than other network. Additionally, the other networks were required by the Republican National Committee to include conservative co-sponsors and moderators, a requirement to which Fox was not held. This is the unmistakable behavior of a party that’s afraid of American voters.

Donald Trump GOP

Over the course of the campaign the RNC has repeatedly made decisions that affirm their state of fear. RNC chairman Reince Priebus admitted that the party was set on transforming what is supposed to be an open dialog that provides voters with an informative look at the candidates, into a PR vehicle that functions more like propaganda. If Republicans want a fully scripted television farce, they should be forced to buy the time like any other telemarketer. But Priebus was focused on producing GOP infomercials saying that…

“The thing that is ridiculous is allowing moderators, who are not serving the best interests of the candidate and the party, to actually be the people to be deposing our people. And I think that’s totally wrong.”

In his view the debates were there to serve the interests of the party, not the voters. Any attempt to draw out anything substantive from the candidates was frowned upon. That’s why after a contentious debate hosted by CNBC, the RNC revoked the only remaining debate scheduled for NBC. The party was punishing the network for doing its job.

This week National Review published a special issue entitled “Against Trump” that contained a series of short essays making the conservative case for ditching Donald Trump. The issue featured your favorite wingnut authors who were generally opposed to Trump’s lack of conservative credentials, principles, or any platform details. The issue opened saying that…

“Trump is a philosophically unmoored political opportunist who would trash the broad conservative ideological consensus within the GOP in favor of a free-floating populism with strong-man overtones.”

It’s somewhat disarming (and a little heartwarming) to see a right-wing publication describe their party’s front-runner as a strong-man akin to Stalin or Mussolini. But coming from a source with diverse conservative voices like Glenn Beck, Bill Krystal, Erick Erickseon, and John Podhoretz, didn’t stop the RNC from striking back and “disinviting” the magazine from co-sponsoring an upcoming debate with CNN. Since when does a party committee get to decide for a news organization who they partner with? This is an unprecedented intrusion into the jurisdiction of journalism, and CNN is just as complicit for capitulating. It makes you wonder if the RNC is also dictating who the moderators are and what the questions will be.

While the RNC was quick to dump the National Review, their inherent prejudice was illustrated by exempting their friends at Fox News from any retaliation. After all, four of the National Review essays came from Fox News regulars Katie Pavlich, Cal Thomas, Dana Loesch, and Brent Bozell. So if you speak out against Trump you can say goodbye to any debate participation – unless you’re Fox News.

The media is shamefully abdicating their role in these debates while the RNC is bending over backwards to placate one candidate to the detriment of all the others. National Review was jettisoned solely because of the perceived slight of Donald Trump. Trump was also a prominent objector to NBC hosting a debate. He was also the reason that the New Hampshire Union Leader was removed as a co-host for an ABC debate. Perhaps the RNC should change their name to the Trump National Committee. Or maybe the Republican National Wusses.

But that wasn’t the end of it. A few weeks ago Trump tried to get the RNC to cancel a GOP primary debate on Univision, which was a bold move considering that Univision was never scheduled to host one. Trump had already banned all Univision employees from his golf resorts, an optically disturbing action that prohibited minorities from his country clubs. What’s more, Trump has also threatened that if Telemundo was involved with a debate he would walk. It remains to be seen if he will follow through on that threat since Telemundo is currently listed as a co-host for CNN’s debate. If Trump succeeds in getting Telemundo axed there will be no GOP debates at all that included any minority news organization.

Most recently Trump tweeted this about Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly: “Based on @MegynKelly’s conflict of interest and bias she should not be allowed to be a moderator of the next debate.” He seems not to know what a conflict of interest is, but as for bias, he is simply referring to his objection to an entirely appropriate question she asked him in the first GOP debate. She asked him to explain his many derogatory references to women. He dodged the question and complained about political correctness, and after the debate he accused Kelly having been hormonal. That led to a prolonged series of attacks on her. If Kelly worked for some other network it would probably have already been removed as a debate host. However, as established above, Fox News will not likely suffer any consequences.

[Update: Trump is hinting that he might boycott the upcoming GOP debate on Fox News unless they drop Kelly as a moderator. He’s saying he might hold his own televised townhall to compete with it. Fox is, so far, refusing to capitulate saying “Sooner or later Donald Trump even if he’s president, is going to have to learn that he doesn’t get to pick the journalists. We’re very surprised he’s willing to show that much fear about being questioned by Megyn Kelly.” Fox deserves credit for standing firm, and it’s pretty cagey of them to accuse Trump of cowardice, but don’t bet on Trump sitting this out. However, the RNC, which demanded the exclusion of the Union Leader in New Hampshire, has said they are keeping out of this dispute because – well, it’s Fox News]

What this tells us is that Reince Priebus is the weakest Republican Party chairman in decades. He is letting Trump dictate the terms of the campaign. And the other candidates are keeping their mouths shut. They are all too afraid to demand that their primary be conducted with neutrality and integrity. It is a pathetic display of cowardice by a party so feeble it’s at risk of blowing away. And the thought of facing aggressive questions, even from other conservatives, makes them scurry into the crevices in the floorboards like cockroaches surprised by the light.

Good luck to them when they eventually face actual opponents in the general election. They will be utterly unprepared for battle having sheltered themselves in a cocoon of limp rhetoric that all stems from the same cultish mindset. That may be sufficient to draw support from Republican dimwits who thrive in those pools of ignorance, but it is a recipe for crushing defeat when the broader electorate votes in November.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

A Cloud Behind Every Silver Lining: GOP Candidates And Fox News Slam Iranian Prisoner Release

The news this morning that up to six Americans incarcerated in Iran have been released ought to be met with gladness and relief. These people have suffered for more than a year as prisoners convicted of dubious crimes. Today their families got the news they have been hoping for and are gathering to celebrate freedom.

Fox News Alert

Sadly, that celebration is not being shared by Fox News or the Republican candidates for president. Their lock-step determination to find fault with President Obama no matter the circumstances takes precedence over actual events or the national interest of the country. These “patriots” will never miss an opportunity to run down America or make it look bad in the eyes of the world.

So despite the fact that Fox News has been using the Iranian prisoners for months to accuse President Obama of weakness, they are now framing the release as a hostage swap that benefits the Iranians. Fox reporter Catherine Herridge described it as “short-term elation, but long-term pain.” Fox contributor John Bolton called it “a diplomatic debacle for the United States.” In reality, it’s just another example of the Fox News lose/lose approach to reporting on the President. If he were to cure cancer they would complain that it was a socialist attack on pharmaceutical companies that cost hard-working oncologists their jobs.

And the circus of GOP aspiring presidential clowns could not rush to a microphone quickly enough to criticize the freedom arranged by the Obama administration. From their reactions you might have thought that the news was reporting that Americans were captured rather than freed.

Ted Cruz: We don’t know the details of the deal that is bringing them home. And then it may well be that there are some very problematic aspects to this deal.

Marco Rubio: We should not be involved in swaps. These things should never happen is my point. […] I think this has created incentives for more governments to do this around the world.

Donald Trump: I will tell you, it’s a disgrace that they’ve been there for so long. It’s a disgrace. Remember that. A total disgrace.

Mike Huckabee: They should’ve been released before we ever sat down at the negotiating table.

Chris Christie: We shouldn’t have to swap prisoners, these folks were taken illegally in violation of international law and they should have been released without condition.

Jeb Bush: I would say … if you do not release them, that there’s going to be military action, that that’s an act of provocation, an act of war.

Clearly these folks would have preferred a full-on war with Iran rather than diplomacy. They would have opted to send more Americans to fight and die in a Middle East quagmire. And the fact that the Obama administration successfully negotiated the freedom of our Americans in Iran is greeted with rancor instead of praise. It was the same reaction they had to the sailors who were held briefly after drifting into Iranian waters. The right-wingers considered it an act of war and were rattling their swords in hysterics. Obama resolved the matter with a phone call and the sailors went on their way in few hours. Just imagine if one of those cretins were actually president during these incidents.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

At the very least the Fox News/GOP knee-jerks could have joined the families this weekend to appreciate their long-awaited reunion with loved ones, and returned to their partisan vitriol on Monday. But that’s not how Republicans, or Fox News work.