NYT/CBS Poll: Most Republicans Are Embarrassed By Donald Trump, But Will Vote For Him Anyway

How screwed up are Republican voters? That question may seem unnecessary to anyone who has been watching the GOP primary campaign this election season. It began with seventeen candidates, most of whom never had any hope of success, and some of whom were just plain delusional. And as the field narrowed, the remaining candidates represented the worst of the party’s fringe element. And that’s not even counting Donald Trump.

Donald Trump Voter

What really makes the Republican Party a fall-down laughing stock is something that was revealed in a new poll from the New York Times and CBS News:

“Alarmed by the harsh attacks and negative tone of their presidential contest, broad majorities of Republican primary voters view their party as divided and a source of embarrassment and think that the campaign is more negative than in the past.”

That’s right. Sixty percent of Republican primary voters said the campaign had made them feel mostly embarrassed about their party. The reasons they cite are exclusively associated with the grotesqueness of the Trump campaign: his boorish, unpresidential demeanor, lack of substance, and advocacy of violence. And yet, 46% say that they favor him to be the party’s nominee, twenty points higher than their next choice, Ted Cruz. In fact, half of all voters said they would be “scared” if Trump were elected president, and another 19% said they would be “concerned.” And their concern would be justified, not just because of his unfitness to be president, but because both Clinton and Sanders hold double-digit leads over him in head-to-head match-ups.

So Republican voters are saying that they want Trump to be president despite the fact that they are embarrassed by him as a candidate and afraid of the prospect of his presidency. What sort of sickness would cause people to make such contorted decisions about something so important? Whatever it is, it is the reason that I said way back in September of last year that Donald Trump is just a symptom, Republicans are the disease:

“The fact that his hateful idiocy has caught on with a significant faction of the Republican electorate isn’t his fault. Trump’s support isn’t coming from the back seat of his limo. There are actual voters lining up to align themselves with his noxious brand and without them he would be an asterisk in the polls.”

What’s truly frightening is that so many Republicans are willing to support someone that they affirmatively find embarrassing. The results of this poll should be a source of ongoing concern for the health of our democracy. We probably won’t know until July if Trump actually becomes the GOP nominee, and he may be dumped by party insiders at the convention. But it will be hard to wipe off the stink he has attached to the party and, even after he inevitably flames out, the ignorance and bigotry that are the hallmarks of his campaign will remain. The cult of Trump isn’t new. It’s just the latest incarnation of the Tea Party and the Fox News Church of Right-Wing Crackpottery.

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

One last note, if it makes Republicans feel any better, most Democrats are also embarrassed by Donald Trump. But they’re also embarrassed by Republicans who would still vote for him despite their embarrassment.

Donald Trump Defenders Freak Out, Blame MoveOn.org And George Soros For Protests

The increasing incidences of violence at rallies for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump are unambiguously incited by Trump’s own rancid rhetoric and open encouragement of hostility. No one can reasonably deny that Trump’s vocal approval of punching protesters in the face or carrying them out on stretchers doesn’t have an effect on his already enraged minions.

foxnation-trump-moveon

Nevertheless, the Trump Defense League is in full denial mode as they seek to absolve their Dear Leader of any responsibility for the ruckus that occurs only where Trump treads. They argue that the protesters are a conspiratorial lot that have been assembled by leftist overlords for the purpose of destroying The Donald’s crusade to make America hate again.

At the top of the list of puppet masters is the nefarious MoveOn.org. The Trump Defenders are convinced that MoveOn is orchestrating every one of the individuals who separately engage in acts of dissent at Trump’s rallies across the country. Sean Hannity is among the MoveOn accusers saying that their “liberal fascism” is behind a campaign to “silence any voice that liberals disagree with.” Hannity’s Fox News comrade Bill O’Reilly is also on the anti-MoveOn bandwagon saying that they are “far-left agitators who do not believe in freedom of speech.”

On Fox & Friends they hosted rightist crackpot Wayne Allen Root who tarred Trump’s hecklers as “leftist radicals, most of them paid protesters by MoveOn.org.” Also on the program was Peter Johnson, Jr, Roger’s Ailes’ personal attorney, who described MoveOn as sowing “the seeds of terror.” Trump’s own spokesperson, Katrina Pierson, charged MoveOn with initiating the violence saying that “They go into these Trump rallies and they start swinging and kicking.” And Trump surrogate Sarah Palin colorfully insulted the protesting as “punk ass little thuggery stuff.”

What almost all of these critics added to their harangues was that MoveOn is not just some obscure band of subversives. No, it is a cog in an evil plot managed by a notorious super-villain. And fortunately they have one with an unsettling Hungarian accent and a few billion dollars to finance his dastardly schemes. That’s right, it’s George Soros and he’s back. Whenever the right needs to manufacture a nebulous and all-consuming dread, it trots out the specter of Soros.

In the ensuing frenzy of indictments of MoveOn as the right’s imaginary architect of acrimony, virtually every conservative media reference to them is prepended with the Soros label. If you didn’t know better you might come away thinking that the full, official name of the activist organization is “the Soros-funded MoveOn.org.” However, that’s an indicator of just how obsessed the right is with dangling Soros’ name to frighten their dimwitted throngs. Because if any of them were interested in reality they could easily look up the facts and discover that, while Soros did make sizable donations to MoveOn in the past (about $2.5 million), he has not done so since 2004. Apparently twelve years is not enough time for conservatives at Fox News and elsewhere to retire the “Soros-funded” branding.

As another example of the right’s fetish, the wingnut rag, Daily Caller (which is run by Fox’s Tucker Carlson) posted a bombshell exclusive that heralded their discovery that a Soros “associate” had contributed $200,000 to Gov. John Kasich’s presidential super PAC. That article was intended by the uber-rightist Daily Caller to stigmatize the comparatively moderate Kasich as the left’s favorite Republican. However, the Soros associate identified in the piece was Scott Bessent, a longtime Republican donor who has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to GOP candidates, PACs, and party committees. His donation to Kasich’s campaign was from personal funds and had nothing to do with George Soros. But that didn’t stop much of the wingnut mediasphere from blasting out headlines about Soros bankrolling Kasich.

This is emblematic of the mindset of the right that needs cartoonish demons to invoke the horror of an amorphous liberal threat. They need to be frightened into mobilizing against a monstrous enemy that will thrust the world into chaos and oblivion. How many times have you heard the right swear that Obama’s election, or reelection, or ObamaCare, or Climate Change mitigation, or immigration, or [fill in the scary blank], would doom America and the world to extinction? So rather than recognize the glaring evidence of Trump’s incitation to riot, right-wingers point their bony fingers to George Soros, or Saul Alinsky, or ACORN, or Barack Obama, or the armies of gay-married, Muslims on food stamps who are coming for your guns and fossil fuels. Be AFRAID!

Not to be left out, the Fox News community website, Fox Nation, joined in with a post linked to the “Moonie” Washington Times that feverishly proclaimed “Moveon.Org Raising Funds from Trump Protests, Warns More Disruptions to Come.” The article alleges a frightful conspiracy that is really nothing more than the standard fundraising of a non-profit group that is asking for three bucks to continue their public service activities. There is nothing in it that even remotely implies advocating any form of physical harm to persons or property. To the contrary, MoveOn is, and always has been, committed to peaceful dissent. And their current anti-Trump campaign is no different. Contrast that with the Fox Nation audience that has once again demonstrated their vile racism and embrace of volence (see The Collected Hate Speech Of The Fox News Community).

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

Fox Nation

Tea And Trumpets: How Fox News Covers Protesters Depends On Who They Are Protesting

Watching the noxious campaign of Donald Trump continue to devolve into ever deeper levels of assholery is becoming a greater challenge with every passing day. His embrace of hostile rhetoric and refusal to convincingly condemn the aggression of his minions is leading to easily predictable episodes of chaos and violence. There is a reason that he is the only candidate that is suffering these problems.

Donald Trump

Trump’s accomplice in this spread of acrimony is, not surprisingly, Fox News. The reports of the protests by Fox are characteristically unfair and acutely unbalanced. They rarely acknowledge that Trump is the instigator of the rancor that his followers have gleefully adopted. In fact, more often than not Fox portrays the protesters has initiating the violence. Never mind that there is no evidence whatsoever of that ever happening. What exactly did the folks at Fox think would happen when Trump told his followers that he would pay their legal fees if they were arrested for assaulting a protester? What did they think Trump was trying to convey when he said this:

“Part of the problem and part of the reason it takes so long is nobody wants to hurt each other anymore, right? […] There used to be consequences. There are none anymore.”

And this:

“I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks. It’s true. … I’d like to punch him in the face, I’ll tell you.”

And that only scratches the surface (here are a bunch more). Trump could not be making it any clearer that he’s fond of the idea of physical altercations and that if you support him, you should be too. This is coming from someone who is now trying to pass himself off as a unifier. Before he can plausibly claim to being able to unite his party, or the country, or to make all the amazing deals he boasts about, shouldn’t he be able to settle his differences with these protesters? How on Earth would he ever be able to bring peace to the Middle East if he can’t bring it to Chicago?

It is in this environment that Fox News offers up perverse tales of peaceful demonstrators inviting the attacks that are waged on them. The Fox spin is that they are all engaged in a secret conspiracy to destroy the Trump Crusade by getting themselves beat up and arrested. Fox is actually theorizing that there is a plot afoot that is backed by evil and powerful puppet masters of the left. For instance, Fox anchor Doug McKelway prefaced a question to a guest this morning with this brazen bias:

“There have been suggestions that MoveOn.org is behind a lot of this orchestrated violence.”

First of all, there have been no suggestions of the sort by anyone but McKelway’s bosses at Fox News. Secondly, the baseless charge of “orchestrated violence” is posed falsely by Fox as if it were a matter of fact. Not only is it not factual, it’s a blatant lie that Fox deliberately inserted into the debate. The only thing here that is orchestrated is Fox’s defamation of the protesters.

As another example of their well-coordinated talking points, anchor Neil Cavuto implied, with no evidence, that Media Matters and George Soros were responsible for the Chicago protests. His guest, former GE CEO Jack Welch, added Bill Ayres and MoveOn to the mix of lefty conspirators. Then Welch said that “If we’re gonna have riots, we ought to have riots aimed at what Bernie Sanders has to say about tearing our country down.” To which Cavuto replied “Yeah, you’re right.”

So Fox is not attempting to calm down the rhetoric at all, Instead, they are trying to sustain it, but shift the victims to the side that they don’t like. This is Fox’s way of telling their viewers to show up at a Sanders rally and start a riot. Note that Welch’s assertion that there have been riots already is utterly false, but that didn’t stop him from expressing his desire to starting some. Note also that the candidate that is most often tearing our country down is Donald Trump, who frequently says that the American dream is dead, and that America is a Hell hole, and that all of our leaders are stupid losers, and that the economy is a bubble that is about to burst, etc., etc.

It wasn’t long ago that Fox News considered protesters to be noble defenders of patriotism. Whenever there was a Tea Party rally, Fox was there to celebrate them as civic minded citizens who were fighting to restore their twisted version of the Constitution. The Tea Party was hailed as champions of freedom, despite the fact that they were actually a creation of the billionaire Koch brothers, with help from Fox News. And when they crashed public meetings by shouting down anyone with whom they disagreed, Fox cheered and brought them into the studio the next day for a slobbering interview.

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

So here’s the difference in how Fox News will cover protesters. If you’re wearing a tri-corner hat and carrying a Gadsden flag, Fox will devote countless hours of airtime to glorifying your efforts on behalf of God and country, even if you illegally seize government property and threaten to shoot law enforcement officers (i.e. the Bundy Klan). But if you deign to Occupy Wall Street or demonstrate against a bigoted, orange-haired narcissist with designs on an American dictatorship, Fox will smear you as a subversive who wants to turn America over to ISIS. And don’t forget, free speech is a right that is only available to ultra-rightists and conservative blowhards. It does not extend to people opposed to them. And if you attempt to exercise it you will be subject to slander and defamation by Fox News.

Hillary’s America: Ex-Con’s Anti-Clinton Documentary Whitewashes The Right’s Ties To The KKK

The architects of the long-festering anti-Clinton crusades are often people who are demonstrably lacking in ethics or honesty. Take for example ex-con Dinesh D’Souza. Two years ago he pleaded guilty to election fraud. Prior to that he was forced to resign as the dean of a Catholic university due to his marital infidelity. This paragon of virtue, who is presenting himself as a spokesman for conservative values, has a follow-up to his 2012 crocumentary, “Obama’s America,” wherein he attempted to portray Hillary Clinton and President Obama as a hippie and a street thug.

The Hippie & The Street Thug

Setting aside those sexist and racist characterizations, D’Souza utterly failed to make any coherent points and his cinematic tantrum had no impact on the election that he hoped to swing to the right. So naturally he is returning with a new screed aimed directly at Clinton titled “Hillary’s America.” If her administration wound up being anything like Obama’s, then the stock market would double again, there would be another 72 straight months of private sector job growth, the percent of Americans without health insurance would be cut in half again, and the deficit would be cut by another two-thirds. What a nightmare.

The trailer for D’Souza’s new film (video below) reveals that it intends to continue an absurd and dishonest argument about racism in America. It begins with a D’Souza voice-over asking “Who are these Democrats?” Before answering that question he whines that “It all began when the Obama administration tried to shut me up.” That’s a reference to his prosecution and incarceration for election fraud to which he admitted guilt. He doesn’t explain how that sneaky rascal Obama got him to break the law by illegally funding a Republican Senate candidate. However, he does dismiss his own criminality to claim that “The big criminals are still at large,” while showing video of Clinton and Obama.

The meat of this propaganda piece appears to be centered on D’Souza’s allegations that the modern Democratic Party is closely tied to the Ku Klux Klan and supports slavery. This is one of the favorite lies of far-right cranks and Republican apologists for bigotry. It is based on the sliver of fact that 150 years ago southern Democrats were angry with Abraham Lincoln’s abolitionist policies and formed hate groups to oppose him. But the flaky right obsessively ignores the reality that Democrats cast off those positions in the 1950’s and 1960’s as they advanced comprehensive civil and voting rights legislation.

As a result, the bigots in the party fled en masse to a welcoming Republican Party that opposed advancements in equality and swelled the ranks of the white supremacist organizations. Former Democrats like Strom Thurmond became leaders of the GOP’s segregationist contingent. And today it is still the Republican Party that is throwing up roadblocks to the voting rights and non-discrimination bills that are proposed by Democrats. It is not coincidental that Donald Trump’s candidacy is backed by David Duke and other white supremacists. And it isn’t just Trump that draws those racists to the GOP. Anyone who can deny that it is the Republican Party that is the home of Confederacy-loving racists is either lying through their teeth, oblivious to reality, or painfully stupid.

D’Souza appeared at this year’s ultra-rightist CPAC convention to promote the film. He revealed his intention to release it during the Democratic National Committee’s convention in July. Clearly he thinks he’s going to disrupt the news cycle with his wingnut fan fiction, but more likely it will get lost amid the more newsworthy events associated with launching the Democrats’ presidential nominee into the general election. So he was reduced to begging the CPAC attendees to see the film on its opening weekend in the hopes of building buzz. [Side note: D’Souza will have wasted a lot of time and his sponsors money if Bernie Sanders ends up being the nominee]

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

The Cult Of Fox News: Blind Devotion To Cable’s Church Of Disinformation Continues

While researching an article on the cultish components of Donald Trump’s campaign and the branding strategy behind it (stay tuned for that.) I came across an article I wrote a little over a year ago that addressed the same subject, but with respect to Fox News. Having read it again it seemed to still be so relevant to the Fox News of today that it deserved a second look. So here it is in its entirety.


Pray for Fox News

One of the fundamental methods employed by cults to assure unwavering loyalty is to demand that devotees believe only in the doctrine bestowed by the cult. All others are presumed to be deceivers and unworthy of trust.

With that in mind, consider the results of the new Pew Research study on “Political Polarization & Media Habits.” The year-long research surveyed American news consumers and categorized their relationships to thirty-six sources for news and information about government and politics by political ideology. The differences in the levels of trust exhibited by consistent conservatives and liberals are profound.

The study reveals that conservatives have drastically constrained their access to news to a very few, hard-right outlets. They behave as if any exposure to a conflicting viewpoint would be tantamount to fraternizing with Satan. Consequently, they rely almost solely on Fox News for their information intake. That is how Fox maintains their ratings position, by herding all of the conservative cattle into one corral.

Nearly half (47%) of conservatives identify Fox News as their “main source” for news. Nothing else even comes close. Compare that to liberals who cite CNN as a main source only 15% of the time with a half dozen other sources closely competing for their attention. What’s more, conservatives obediently trust Fox News by a larger margin (88%) than any other group of viewers. And the only other sources they trust more than 50% of the time are similarly far-right partisans: Sean Hannity (62%), Rush Limbaugh (58%), and Glenn Beck (51%). Of course, none of those sources are objective news providers, or even journalists.

While Conservatives have only four sources that they trust more than 50% of the time, liberals express trust for nine different sources at that rate: NPR (72%), PBS (71%), BBC (69%), New York Times (62%), CNN (56%), NBC (56%), MSNBC (52%), ABC (52%), and CBS (51%). Note that they are all (with the exception of MSNBC) generally regarded as legitimate journalistic enterprises. Except, that is, by conservatives who trust none of them. In fact, conservatives only have greater trust than distrust for twelve of the thirty-six sources in the study. So consistent with the cult maxim, conservatives actively distrust twenty-four (two-thirds) of the sources. Liberals flip that stat, having greater trust for twenty-eight of the sources and distrust for only eight.

The mission of Fox News from the beginning was to divide the nation by ideology. It is why they came up with their “fair and balanced” slogan with the implicit accusation that the other news providers were neither. They deliberately sectioned off their audience and told them that everyone else was lying to them. Subsequently, when they lied to their viewers (which they do constantly), there is no place for them to turn for the actual truth. The Fox version of events becomes the unqualified gospel for their audience/disciples despite being riddled with falsehoods and rancid partisanship. And additional proof of that is seen in the studies that show that Fox viewers are less informed than those who watch other media, or even those who watch nothing at all. And the more you watch Fox, the less you know.

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

The correlations to cult status are unmistakable: Proselytize relentlessly (Fox is #1); repeat/preach the cult’s doctrine (anti-Obama, anti-government, Benghazi); reinforce obedience with fear (tyranny, terrorism, Ebola); glorification of idols (Ronald Reagan, Ted Cruz, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin); demonization of competing views (Democrats, the rest of the media); and fabricating a comforting home for faithful followers by casting experienced propagandists and appealing, mostly blonde, presenters as reporters. It’s a closed loop society that succeeds by keeping the flock secluded, ignorant, and artificially happy. I just hope they don’t start serving Kool-Aide.

The Trump Effect: Bad For America, But ‘Damn Good’ For The Media

Les Moonves, the chief executive of CBS, was speaking at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom Conference, when he decided to reveal one of the sad truths of modern media that is well known to insiders. It’s something that is representative of the core principles (or lack thereof) of a once noble profession that has been co-opted by greed and the corporate craving for power. With reference to the campaign of Donald Trump, Moonves was caught bragging about the cash cash cow he was unashamedly milking.

Moonves: Who would have thought that this circus would come to town. It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS. That’s all I got to say. So what can I say? The money’s rolling in, this is fun.

Donald Trump

Make no mistake, this is an admission by Moonves that his lust for profit is a higher priority than his love of country. Worse still, this pursuit of wealth, in Moonves’ view, is actually fun, even as it’s harmful to the rest of the nation and his fellow citizens. That is a form treason. Yet Moonves admits that despite Trump’s campaign being divisive, hostile, racist, ignorant, and detrimental to the well being of the United States, he gladly welcomes the damage it will do so long as CBS rakes in more cash.

And CBS isn’t alone in harboring these traitorous ambitions. The whole of the corporate media industry is guilty of the same self-interest. It’s why even MSNBC airs Trump’s stump speeches live in their entirety when they don’t do it for any other candidate. And it’s the result of the consolidation within the business that has thrust the profit motive over patriotism. These new multinational conglomerates have no incentive to be loyal to any nation, or to any anything other than their next quarterly earnings report. The one exception to this may be Fox News, whose owners and management are just as committed to pushing right-wing propaganda as they are to enriching their themselves.

The profit incentive for the media has a toxic effect on democracy. It produces reporting that is driven by motives other than honestly informing the public. What Moonves is putting on display for all to see is the damage that can be done when a news enterprise can be justifiably suspected of distorting their stories in order to fatten their wallets. Moonves was literally rooting for Trump specifically because his brand of melodramatic demagoguery draws more eyeballs to the advertising the network is now selling for inflated rates.

Moonves: I’ve never seen anything like this and this is going to be a very good year for us. Sorry, it’s a terrible thing to say, but bring it on, Donald, go ahead, keep going. […] “I’m not taking any sides, I’m just saying for us, economically, Donald Trump’s place in this election is a good thing.

With cheerleading like that, how can anyone watch this campaign coverage and be confidant that they are being told the truth. Clearly, the media has a profit motive to keep Trump in the race, and even boost his chances of securing the Republican nomination in order to keep the register ringing straight through to November and beyond. The other candidates are being deep-sixed because they can’t pull in the big bucks the way The Donald does.

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

This isn’t democracy. There may not be a word for what this is. We could call it a capitalocracy to illustrate the fact that the worst elements of capitalism are what determines who our leaders will be. We may as well stop having elections and just give prospective candidates their own TV shows and the one with the highest Nielsen ratings becomes president. Oh wait a minute. That’s pretty much how Donald Trump got to where he is today.

Is Tea Party Godfather Charles Koch Feeling The Bern?

The Washington Post (you know, that bastion of the so-called “liberal” media) just published an op-ed by Charles Koch of the infamous Koch brothers. The headline declared that “This is the one issue where Bernie Sanders is right.” While that’s a fairly generous admission, it is hardly representative of Koch’s actual worldview.

Koch Brothers Bernie Sanders

Koch begins his article by acknowledging the obvious – that he and Sanders “disagree on plenty when it comes to public policy.” Then he disingenuously asserts that he sees benefits in searching for common ground and greater civility.” That’s a bit difficult to believe coming from someone who has spent years bankrolling Teabaggers, the most uncivil movement of rightist malcontents in decades. Nevertheless, Koch sought to align himself with part of the Sanders platform of income inequality:

“The senator is upset with a political and economic system that is often rigged to help the privileged few at the expense of everyone else, particularly the least advantaged. He believes that we have a two-tiered society that increasingly dooms millions of our fellow citizens to lives of poverty and hopelessness. He thinks many corporations seek and benefit from corporate welfare while ordinary citizens are denied opportunities and a level playing field.”

While criticizing policies of both parties that “helps perpetuate a cycle of control,” Koch also took the opportunity to lash out at the regulations that have been a staple of his anti-government agenda. And he remains opposed to the sort of reforms that make it possible for people rise out of poverty (i.e. ObamaCare, unions, increasing the minimum wage, non-discrimination in employment, parental leave, etc.).

Despite the facade of a conciliatory partner in advancing the interests of all Americans, Charles Koch and his brother David are devoted to the fraternity of the one-percent to which they belong. They enjoy the fruits of income inequality. They are ardent foes of environmental protection and programs to mitigate climate change. Even worse, they would abolish the EPA, even while their businesses are among the worst toxic polluters in the nation. They favor privatizing Social Security and Medicare. They create media front groups to spread right-wing propaganda. And they are the biggest supporters and beneficiaries of Citizens United.

In addition to all of the above, the Koch brothers virtually created the Tea Party. Groups like FreedomWatch and Americans for Prosperity are nothing more than surrogates for the disgruntled goofballs who dress up in tri-corner hats and carry racist signs with pictures of President Obama as a witch doctor. The Koch brothers have invested multi-millions of dollars in the Tea Party in an attempt to crush Democrats and replace them with the sort of hard-line, right-wing extremists that have produced gridlock in Congress. They lust for shutdowns of government even if it means sinking the economy or denying healthcare for 9/11 first-responders.

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

This article is just another component of their campaign to rehabilitate their public image, cleverly referred to as “The New Koch” by Jane Mayer of the New Yorker. But, they are just as committed to their wingnut agenda as ever. They announced that they will spend nearly a billion dollars in the 2016 election cycle in support of conservative Republicans who promise to dismantle the government, leaving them free to pollute the planet and plunder the economy. So don’t let this faux Valantine to Bernie Sanders fool you. The Koch brothers are what they have always been: John Birch Society Libertarians with strong Ayn Rand leanings.

Fox News Anchor Attacks Student’s Freedom Of Speech As “Repulsive”

Todd Starnes is the resident Fox News televangelist and Christaria Law proponent. As the host of Fox’s American Dispatch he devotes nearly every segment to some perceived blasphemy on the part of government, schools, or businesses. He is convinced that the huge majority of American Christians are being oppressed and are at risk of losing all of their rights. He sees conspiracies in popular culture to rob good Christians of rewards to which they are entitled. And he preaches a twisted gospel that casts Jesus as an ass-kicking warrior.

Todd Starnes

The latest episode of the Starnes Stories concerns a photo that was posted on Facebook showing a high school kid standing on an American flag. The story came from the Education Action Group, a right-wing organization that is funded by the Koch brothers and has a rotten record for honesty. Starnes posted an article on Fox News reporting that “Teen’s flag-stomp stunt at HS spurs investigation.” That act of disrespect was castigated as “repulsive” and “detestable” by Starnes. In his highly biased presentation of the facts he said that…

“The repulsive photograph, reportedly posted online over the Valentine’s Day weekend, shows a young man standing on Old Glory as a female student stands nearby with her middle finger raised.”

Setting aside that fact that there was nothing to investigate, the incident would have been forgotten had it stopped there. It would have been nothing more than an ordinary expression of opinion, to which Starnes is entitled. However, the article went on to hail the school administration for coming out strongly against this student’s extracurricular activity.

“The district solicitor posted a message online promising a ‘timely and thorough review of this incident and will implement appropriate legal discipline.’ They called the photo ‘unfortunate and unpatriotic.'”

Starnes was thrilled that there would be legal consequences for the student’s outrageous behavior. The only problem is, he didn’t break any law. The Supreme Court has ruled that the flag can be used as an instrument of expression. Despite the hurt feelings of patriopathic zealots, it would be unlawful to constrain speech merely because it involved the flag. According to Starnes, however, this treasonous tot should be forced to undergo some sort of punishment. And when the ACLU was asked to comment on the affair, their answer only enraged Starnes further. He wrote that…

“The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania doesn’t seem to think there’s a problem with desecrating Old Glory.”

‘As long as they were trying to send a message of protest, it sounds like they are protected to me,’ legal director Witold Walczak told the Tribune Democrat.

“The ACLU enjoys nothing better than an old-fashioned American flag burning.”

Actually, the ACLU enjoys nothing better than old-fashioned freedom of speech. And as has been observed in events like this since the founding of the nation, it is primarily speech that some people find offensive that is most in need of protection. After all, no one is trying to censor speech that everyone likes.

In addition to Starnes demonstrating an aversion to the First Amendment, he is also affirming the blatant hypocrisy of conservatives like himself on Fox News and elsewhere. For some reason he never bothered to complain when George W. Bush and his wife Laura stomped on an American flag. Nor did it disturb his tender sensitivities when Fox News paid tribute to flag desecration on the 4th of July. And while putting Obama’s face on flag was considered a disgrace, there was no such anger when the Tea Party did it. Clearly flag desecration is permitted when the offender is a conservative, but reviled otherwise.

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

Starnes has developed a reputation as a dishonest purveyor of religious propaganda. That’s surely how he got his job at Fox News. One particularly grievous example of his lack of principles was the time he reported on a five year old girl whose father claimed she was prohibited from praying in her school’s cafeteria. There was never any evidence that this happened and it was later discovered that the girl’s father was the VP of Sales for his publisher (which he never disclosed) and he had a book that was just about to be released on this very subject. The whole thing was apparently a lie concocted to sell his book. And that’s not an uncommon modus operandi at Fox News where virtually every anchor is hawking their books.

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.