The Sleazification Of American Presidential Politics Courtesy Of Donald Trump

Politics has always been a rough and tumble game with mudslinging and character attacks that test a candidates endurance. And while it often diverts from the issues that voters care about, those types of tactics are usually short-lived distractions and the public debate generally returns to the primacy of a candidate’s policies and proposals.

Donald Trump

But this year it’s different. One of the candidates is a former reality TV game show host with a long history of making tabloid melodrama the centerpiece of his celebrity. Donald Trump is a rich, spoiled, thrice married playboy who flaunts his infidelities, and isn’t shy about slandering anyone he perceives as an enemy. And he has brought his crass demeanor and inflated ego to his candidacy for president.

It is precisely because Trump is so ignorant when it comes to the pressing matters of state that he needs to rely so heavily on smear campaigns and juvenile name-calling. It has been nearly a year since he announced his entry into the race and he is no more knowledgeable today than when he began. Consequently, we can expect to see a continuation of the empty-headed insults and bullying that are the hallmarks of Trump’s campaign. And today there were two frightening examples of what the next five months are going to look like on the campaign trail.

The first came in the form of a Trump video dredging up an old and discredited allegation about Bill Clinton. The accuser, Kathleen Willey, had told her story to the Independent Counsel investigating Clinton back in the early 1990’s, as well as the FBI, who dismissed it as inconsistent, unverified, and riddled with lies. As Media Matters reported, she also told it to conspiracy fruitcake Alex Jones and Donald Trump.

The video Trump is now distributing shows Willey recycling her assault charges with no more evidence today than she had twenty-three years ago. The difference is that now she has Donald Trump paying her to repeat this rotting pile of salacious gossip. Although it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Trump, a still festering birther, would hype such obvious garbage. Willey has also accused the Clintons of killing her husband and her cat.

The second steaming heap was reported by the Washington Post and also attempts to reanimate a scandal that has been dead for a quarter of a century. Trump spoke to the Post today and unprompted resurrected the ghost of former White House aide Vince Foster. Foster committed suicide in 1993, which led to a flurry of ludicrous conspiracy theories mainly accusing Bill and/or Hillary of murdering him.

So today Trump told the Post that he considered Foster’s death to be “very fishy.” Continuing, Trump said of Foster that “He had intimate knowledge of what was going on. He knew everything that was going on and then all of a sudden he committed suicide.” Trump never reveals what might have been going on that would make him a target for assassination. He also neglects to mention that Foster’s death “was ruled a suicide in investigations conducted by the United States Park Police, the Department of Justice, the FBI, Kenneth Starr and Congress.”

The fact that Trump is bringing up these bizarre and stale smears of yesteryear shows that he intends to drag the campaign down to levels never seen before. He will continue to avoid substantive issues like national security, economics, healthcare, and equality because he simply doesn’t comprehend any of them. So prepare to be inundated with assertions that Hillary Clinton is a lizard-person from outer space who is plotting to devour your children. Because that’s as close to reality as Donald Trump is capable of getting.

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

And what’s really sad is that Trump’s glassy-eyed followers won’t see anything wrong with this style of campaigning. They don’t care if he talks about ISIS or Martians as long he says he’s gonna obliterate them in the first week of his presidency. And they certainly don’t care if he lies through his capped teeth as he has been doing for the past year (see the Trump Bullshitopedia). His fans love nothing better than the tales of murder and lust that are more at home in the cheesiest of soap operas. So that’s what they will get and most of it will be happily delivered by Fox News. They will never ask him to demonstrate any of the intelligence or ability to govern the most powerful nation on Earth – Lucky for him.

Veterans Shortchanged And Lied To By Donald Trump Re: $6 Million In Donations

Remember that time when Donald Trump was so afraid of Megyn Kelly that he ditched a Fox News debate and scampered off to host a fake telethon for veterans? The event that he deliberately scheduled to compete with the televised debate turned out to be nothing more than another self-serving Trump stump speech. The only difference was that he shamelessly exploited wounded veterans as campaign props and proudly announced that he had raised six million dollars for their benefit.

Donald Trump Veterans

Months later, reports by CNN, the Wall Street Journal, and others, exposed Trump’s fraud by contacting the veterans groups that he identified as the recipients of his alleged largess. Turns out that only a fraction of the six million dollars had found its way to the intended beneficiaries. His campaign could not, or would not, account for the missing funds, referring reporters to his website where there was no information about the disbursement of the donations.

Now the plot is thickening. Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, was asked about the donations by the Washington Post and now claims that the amount raised was less than previously stated. He said that he didn’t know what the correct amount was or how much had been disbursed. Then he attempted to disavow entirely the claims of the telethon’s success. Referring to Trump’s prior boasts, Lewandowski said that…

“What he said was, ‘We hope to get $6 million.’ He said this at an event where we were trying to get money. It was a best guess. That was his goal. His goal was to get somewhere around $6 million.”

Not exactly. Trump made a point of bragging on several occasions that he had raised six million dollars. What’s more, his website still has a page that makes the same claim:

“Mr. Trump personally contributed $1 million dollars to the cause and raised an additional $5 million before the one-hour event concluded, totaling more than $6 million dollars.”

Contrary to Lewandowski’s new characterization, that is not an expression of hope, it is stated as a fact. In addition, seeking to further glorify himself, Trump made specific reference to his own alleged generosity. However, since he refuses to release any of his tax returns there is no way to verify the truth of that claim either. And Trump’s unscrupulousness has not gone unnoticed by actual veterans. Paul Rieckhoff, founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, told the Post…

“No matter how you cut it, that’s just shady. If he was going to make it right, a couple of weeks before Memorial Day would be a good time to do it. It behooves him, not just politically but ethically, to come forward and account for this money.”

Lewandowski attributes the donation shortfall to unnamed donors who made large pledges that they later welshed on. So he’s blaming Trump’s friends who reneged on their promises to help the veterans. Those are the same people that Trump is always saying will be part of his administration.

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

Of course, Trump could make up the difference himself if his interest in the vets were genuine. After all, he has already loaned his campaign over $40 million, so what’s stopping him from kicking in another couple of million for the veterans he claims to love? Nothing but his selfishness and personal greed. It is not without cause that he is known as the least charitable billionaire.

Former Reagan State Department Official Scorches “Fascist” Donald Trump

For the past year much has been written about Donald Trump. He may be the most widely despised candidate for president to ever seek the office. The animosity directed at him comes from all across the political spectrum and many Republicans even now refuse to support his candidacy.

Donald Trump Fascism

That said, I can’t recall reading a more damning critique of The Donald than the one that appeared this week in the Washington Post. It was written by Robert Kagan, a former official in Ronald Reagan’s State Department, so this is no left-wing hit piece. It lays out a devastating account of why Trump would be a disastrous choice for leader of the free world, beginning with the headline: “This Is How Fascism Comes To America.” It gets worse from there. And the best way to convey the sentiment of this article is to simply let it speak for itself with a some choice excerpts. Therefore…

“The Republican Party’s attempt to treat Donald Trump as a normal political candidate would be laughable were it not so perilous to the republic.”

“His incoherent and contradictory utterances have one thing in common: They provoke and play on feelings of resentment and disdain, intermingled with bits of fear, hatred and anger. His public discourse consists of attacking or ridiculing a wide range of “others” — Muslims, Hispanics, women, Chinese, Mexicans, Europeans, Arabs, immigrants, refugees — whom he depicts either as threats or as objects of derision.”

“Trump himself is simply and quite literally an egomaniac. But the phenomenon he has created and now leads has become something larger than him, and something far more dangerous.”

“As Alexander Hamilton watched the French Revolution unfold, he feared in America what he saw play out in France — that the unleashing of popular passions would lead not to greater democracy but to the arrival of a tyrant, riding to power on the shoulders of the people.”

“This phenomenon has arisen in other democratic and quasi-democratic countries over the past century, and it has generally been called “fascism.” Fascist movements, too, had no coherent ideology, no clear set of prescriptions for what ailed society.”

“Successful fascism was not about policies but about the strongman, the leader (Il Duce, Der Führer), in whom could be entrusted the fate of the nation. Whatever the problem, he could fix it. Whatever the threat, internal or external, he could vanquish it, and it was unnecessary for him to explain how.”

“To understand how such movements take over a democracy, one only has to watch the Republican Party today. These movements play on all the fears, vanities, ambitions and insecurities that make up the human psyche.”

“If someone criticizes or opposes the leader, it doesn’t matter how popular or admired that person has been. He might be a famous war hero, but if the leader derides and ridicules his heroism, the followers laugh and jeer.”

“What these people do not or will not see is that, once in power, Trump will owe them and their party nothing. […] Imagine the power he would wield then. In addition to all that comes from being the leader of a mass following, he would also have the immense powers of the American presidency at his command: the Justice Department, the FBI, the intelligence services, the military. Who would dare to oppose him then?”

“[I]s a man like Trump, with infinitely greater power in his hands, likely to become more humble, more judicious, more generous, less vengeful than he is today, than he has been his whole life? Does vast power un-corrupt?”

“This is how fascism comes to America, not with jackboots and salutes (although there have been salutes, and a whiff of violence) but with a television huckster, a phony billionaire, a textbook egomaniac “tapping into” popular resentments and insecurities, and with an entire national political party — out of ambition or blind party loyalty, or simply out of fear — falling into line behind him.”

That pretty much sums it up. Kagan has captured perfectly what Trump represents as a candidate. He is all bluster and ego without a hint of intellect, experience, or judgment. And sadly, his glassy-eyed followers dance to his calliope like well-trained circus geeks. It’s shocking that whatever level-headed Republicans remain aren’t bellowing from rooftops the warnings that are embedded in this article. they are not only sacrificing themselves and their party, they are putting America’s head on the chopping block. And they don’t seem to give a damn.

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

On Fox News, Republican Losers Get Credit For Democratic Successes

One of the most consistent fallacies presented by Fox News on a daily basis is the assignment of blame for for anything that goes wrong exclusively to President Obama. If it can be cast as negative, Obama did it. Some of the laughable liabilities attributed to the President include the riots in Ferguson, MO, California’s drought, Ebola, and even Hurricane Katrina (which happened three years before he was elected. They have blamed him for high gas prices that hurt consumers, as well as for low gas prices that hurt oil companies. There is simply no way Obama can win with these partisan hacks.

Bush Blame Obama

Fox News’ Stolen Honor

Now, in addition to making Obama shoulder the responsibility for the failures of incompetent Republicans, Fox News is also stealing the credit for anything good that happens during any Democratic administration. This week alone has provided two glaring examples of this stolen honor by Fox pundits who can’t seem find anything that Republicans have done that actually helped the nation.

First we have Eric Bolling, a co-host of Fox’s The Five. During a segment devoted to bashing Hillary Clinton’s campaign, Bolling sought to diminish her husband’s success in orchestrating what was at the time the longest period of non-wartime economic growth in the nation’s history. Since he couldn’t plausibly deny that it was an era of unprecedented prosperity, Bolling served up this pretzel logic: “The reason why Bill [Clinton] did so well is because of Ronald Reagan.”

Of course it was. Never mind that Reagan was followed by four years of his vice-president George H.W. Bush who ran the economy into the ground and was summarily booted out of office. And perish the thought that Bolling would provide any substantive argument to support his made up theory. According to Bolling Reagan deserves the praise simply for being Reagan.

Following that, Fox’s senior political analyst, Brit Hume, made an appearance on Special Report to deliver his explanation for the political successes of Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. Eventually the discussion diverted to the state of the economy under President Obama. Hume began by asserting that the economy isn’t really in very good shape, but then shifted to proclaim that whatever was good about it wasn’t Obama’s doing, saying that “The credit for rescuing the economy, if it belongs with government, has got to be shared, at least [with George W. Bush].”

And why not? After all, Bush merely presided over the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression. And his response was a basket of bailouts for the banks that were instrumental in the market’s downfall. It wasn’t until Obama came into office that efforts were made to stimulate the economy, and even that was opposed and obstructed by the Republicans in Congress.

It’s Hillary’s Fault Too

In both of the cases above the inspiration for these self-serving assumptions of economic glory stemmed from a comment Hillary Clinton made on the campaign trail. She said that if elected president she would put her husband Bill in charge of revitalizing the economy, something he is demonstrably good at. That comment sent the conservative pundits into a frenzy. They couldn’t abide her reminding people about the boom-time economy over which Clinton presided. So they endeavored to clumsily steal the credit for themselves.

This is just more proof that if Republicans had anything to be proud of they wouldn’t be trying to take credit for things they didn’t do – for things they affirmatively tried to prevent. They are, in effect, admitting that there are no accomplishments attributable to GOP administrations, so by necessity they have to swipe them from Democrats. It’s dishonest and unethical, but that’s never stopped them before.

Donald Trump Is Now Officially The Candidate Of Fox News

Rupert Murdoch, the chairman and CEO of the Fox News parent corporation, is reported to have made his decision to support the presumptuous nominee of the Republican Party, Donald Trump. At first glance this news may seem unremarkable for the avowedly right-wing cable net, but there is a history of discomfort with Trump on the part of Murdoch that he must have overcome either by greed or force.

Donald Trump Rupert Murdoch

Gabriel Sherman of New York Magazine has been covering the inside stories on Fox News for several years. He has reliable sources and published the definitive, unauthorized biography of the network’s CEO Roger Ailes: The Loudest Voice in the Room. His latest scoop is one that casts a disturbing glow on the allegedly “fair and balanced” cable news network:

“According to a half dozen sources familiar with Murdoch’s thinking, the media mogul has signaled he plans to fully back Trump in the general election against Hillary Clinton.”

Prior to this revelation, Murdoch was not particularly enthusiastic about his billionaire peer. He has tweeted that regarding the characterization of Mexican immigrants as criminals, Trump was wrong. He was critical of Trump’s demeanor saying that “Trump finally loses it, in 95 minute rant.” And in a moment of unexpected clarity he asked “When is Donald Trump going to stop embarrassing his friends, let alone the whole country?”

So the question now is what would make Murdoch set aside those concerns to support a notoriously racist, misogynistic, loose cannon with tyrannical tendencies for president of the United States? It’s a question that Sherman addressed in his column suggesting that the shift may be due to financial considerations. Sherman notes that:

“It’s clear Trump is good for business. According to one Fox News producer, the channel’s ratings dip whenever an anti-Trump segment airs.”

There is no doubt that Murdoch is an aggressive businessman who appreciates any opportunity to make a profit. He has built his media empire around a model of tabloid journalism that places tawdry melodrama above factual reporting. And Donald Trump’s reality TV persona has been a boon to all of the networks covering him for the past year. Les Moonves, the CEO of CBS, put it bluntly saying that Trump “may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS.”

However, there may be more to this than sheer greed or political compatibility. In a previous column, Sherman revealed that Trump had dealings with a former Fox News executive who left under suspicious circumstances. The result was that Trump may have acquired information that would be damaging to Fox News and/or its principals. Sherman concluded that “If Ailes ever truly went to war against Trump, Trump would have the arsenal to launch a retaliatory strike.” That sounds very much like something Trump would do.

This could also explain why Fox News was so generous with Trump, giving him more airtime than any other candidate, while simultaneously allowing him to get away with his brutal treatment of Fox News. As News Corpse reported at the time:

“Ordinarily, any Republican candidate would be conscious of the sway that Fox holds over the party and the fate of anyone hoping to rise up in it. But Trump, with an apparently reckless lack of concern, has spent much of the last nine months mercilessly battering the network and its staff. He said of Megyn Kelly that she ‘is the worst’ and has a ‘terrible show.’ He called Karl Rove a ‘total fool’ and ‘a biased dope.’ He said that George Will is a ‘broken down political pundit’ and ‘boring.’ Chris Stirewalt was deemed ‘one of the dumbest political pundits on television.’ Trump laughed off Charles Krauthammer as ‘a totally overrated clown,’ ‘a loser,’ and ‘a dummy.’

Wrapping up the whole network for his disapproval, he tweeted that he was ‘having a really hard time watching Fox News.’ Then he called on his followers to boycott the network. He even went after one of the major shareholders of Fox’s parent corporation.”

Whatever the reason for Murdoch’s newfound infatuation for Trump, it is a troubling development for how the election will be reported. With the CEO of Fox’s parent corporation taking sides, it makes it inevitable that his editors, reporters, and presenters will be influenced and adjust their work accordingly.

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

Of course, Fox News has always been the mouthpiece for the Republican political agenda, so there may not be an apparent difference. But even the facade of neutrality is destroyed when powerful figures within a news organization set the tone for the enterprise. And it makes a mockery of events like today’s announcement that Fox News is seeking to host a Democratic debate before the California primary. Hopefully the party and the candidates will decline that invitation that is only meant to stir more controversy and damage the party’s prospect’s in November. With Murdoch’s capitulation to Donald Trump there is no way to pretend that the network is anything but hostile to whomever the Democrats nominate.

Campaign Ally Says Donald Trump Should “Turn Off” CNN’s FCC License (Which They Can’t Do)

Advancing the already stridently fascist policy platform of Donald Trump’s candidacy, one of his closest friends and political allies is now recommending that Trump put his boot down on the free press should he become president.

Roger Stone Clintons' War On Women

Notorious dirty trickster, Roger Stone, has made a name for himself pushing ludicrous conspiracy theories and offensive smear campaigns. He is a veteran Clinton-hater who once started a group he called “Citizens United Not Timid,” or C.U.N.T. On the basis of that he later became a Fox News Contributor. (Media Matters has compiled a useful guide to his antics).

Yesterday, in an interview with Brietbart News, Stone floated more of his trademark trash in the form of advice for his buddy Donald Trump. In the midst of a tirade against CNN, which he said “is not a news organization, but an advocacy group,” he complained that at CNN “they turn you off” if you try to talk about the women in Bill Clinton’s past. But he has a solution to that problem:

“Frankly, when Donald Trump is president he should turn off their FCC license. They’re not a news organization. They’re about censorship.”

There is so much wrong with that statement that it’s hard to know where to begin. Let’s start with the fact that he could have been talking about Fox News and it would have been more accurate. But the larger issue is that advocating that the government take a roll in deciding which news enterprises should be permitted to operate is not only a violation of the Constitution, but an overtly oppressive tactic generally favored by tyrants. On that measure, it’s easy to see why Trump might be on board.

Trump has previously espoused similar nonsense. In February he threatened the New York Times, and other media outlets he assumes are biased against him, with lawsuits and the prospect of “open[ing] up our libel laws so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money.” And notwithstanding the fact that he can do that now if he actually had a case, he warned that these publishers would “have problems” if he is elected.

Another problem with Stone’s suggestion to de-license CNN is more pragmatic: It’s impossible. The FCC’s authority to regulate licensing is restricted to broadcast media (radio and TV) and they cannot revoke a cable news channel’s license because they don’t issue them. Broadcasters operate over the public airwaves, while cable channels are transmitted on privately owned cable facilities. So Stone’s counsel is not only unconstitutional, it demonstrates his utter ignorance of the subject matter.

Stone has a history of flagrantly offensive remarks that have insulted women and African-Americans. His racist and misogynist tendencies are often expressed openly. As a result he has been banned from both CNN and MSNBC. At Fox News they canceled a few of his recent appearances but have not formally banned him and he has not appeared in several weeks. That may be why he is resorting to fringe platforms like Breitbart to put out his repugnant message. Breitbart has all but officially endorsed Trump and there are credible allegations that Trump paid Breitbart for favorable treatment.

In closing the interview, Stone got to the point of his remarks with a shamelessly self-serving plug. He recommended that listeners get the “truth” by reading the book “The Clintons’ War On Women,” by Roger Stone. It’s a book that has been roundly rebuked by liberals and conservatives alike as being poorly written and sourced. But one thing it has going for it is that Donald Trump has made it his anti-Clinton bible. The diatribes Trump is currently spewing about Clinton’s past are all straight out of this book.

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

Listen to Stone’s interview via Media Matters:

Tax-Dodger Donald: Trump’s Own Documents Prove He Lied About The Value Of His Properties

Is Donald Trump a billionaire or a world-class grifter?

It has been difficult to pin down Trump’s net worth because he refuses to release his taxes until an alleged audit is complete. That excuse has been ridiculed by experts and even the IRS says there is nothing preventing him from making his own tax information public. Nevertheless, he is continuing to hide behind his lawyers and now says that his returns might not be released until after the election.

Donald Trump

Tax returns have been a staple disclosure in politics for nearly half a century. Hillary Clinton has made more than thirty years of returns available to the public. But Trump told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos this weekend that his tax rate is “none of your business.” However, there is data available through other tax filings that is shedding some light on Trump’s mysterious empire.

ABC News is reporting (video below) that the Trump National Golf Club in Westchester County, New York, was valued on Trump’s candidate disclosure statement at “more than $50 million.” The high valuation serves Trump’s political purposes to portray himself as a successful businessman. But when he declared the assessment of the resort for tax purposes he claimed that it was worth only $1.75 million. The difference between his tax declaration and his candidate disclosure amounts to a savings of 90% on his tax bill.

When asked by ABC’s Brian Ross to comment on the discrepancy, he was told that the matter was “decades old and not worthy of a response.” He said much the same thing to reporters asking about the recent discovery of an audio tape of him posing as his own fictional press agent when talking to the media. This is a statute of limitations that only applies to Trump, whose obsession with the Clintons’ marital difficulties from the 1990s he still considers fair game.

The ABC story cited several other instances when Trump was less than honest about paying his taxes. One particularly egregious incident was when he purchased the yacht that became his beloved “Trump Princess.” At the time he pretended to have a patriotic incentive for buying the luxury liner. He said:

“I like to see the great jewels of the country being owned by the people of this country. And it had a big play as to why I bought this boat.”

However, as Ross reported, Trump “used off-shore and out-of-state corporations to buy the yacht and saved him a tax bill of some $1.75 million.” What a patriot. Something that Ross left out is that later, when Trump was undergoing a severe financial crisis, he sold the yacht to Saudi Arabia’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal. So much for “the great jewels of the country.”

The Trump National property was purchased in foreclosure for $8 million, and he spent another $45 million developing the golf course and the club house. So either this property suffered a massive decline in value and Trump isn’t worth what he says he is, or he is deliberately undervaluing it to avoid his legal tax bill. Either way, one of his public declarations is a flagrant lie. And with this report by ABC News will the media pick up the story and begin to tell the truth about Trump’s dishonesty?

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

The Trump Effect: GOP Officially Supports Degrading Remarks Toward Women, Minorities

This election cycle has seen more than its fair share of unconventional occurrences. It began with a record seventeen Republican presidential candidates who, one-by-one, were struck down by a vulgarian throwback who rooted his campaign in lies and juvenile insults. The feral tactics of Donald Trump did more to validate public ignorance and rudeness than any politician in modern times.

Donald Trump Effect

Even worse, Trump’s overt hate mongering made it safe for racists, misogynists, and xenophobes to come out from the crevices in the floorboards and promote their bigotry with pride. Leading by example, his offensive attacks have been directed at women, Muslims, Latinos, and pretty much anyone with whom he had a disagreement. The KKK is bragging that they can use Trump for outreach to recruit new members, and other white supremacists have been campaigning for him in the primaries.

Much of Trump’s rhetoric revolves around a generalized disgust for what he calls political correctness. But his misinterpretation of term is really just his desire to be crude and insulting without consequence. And now that he has introduced that theme to his fans in the public and the press, the Republican Party is lining up behind it as well.

This weekend at the Nebraska Republican convention, the delegates were presented with an opportunity to make civility and respect for others a part of their party’s platform. The opportunity came in the form of a resolution condemning “degrading remarks toward women, minorities and other people by Republican elected office holders or party officials, including candidates for president of the United States.”

On its face this seems like it should be an uncontroversial proposal. Who would be in favor of degrading remarks toward women and minorities? Of course the answer to that question is “Donald Trump,” who has made such conduct his trademark. And this was so well recognized by the delegates at the convention that they actually quashed the resolution in an apparent attempt to protect the presumptive nominee of their party. Let’s repeat this for clarity: The delegates to the Nebraska Republican convention voted against condemning degrading remarks toward women and minorities.

To make matters worse, the delegate leading the pro-degrading movement was state school board member Pat McPherson, whose own background is littered with smarmy behavior including inappropriate behavior towards a woman, repeated references to President Obama as “a half-breed,” and charges of third-degree sexual assault. Seems like just the right person to kill this resolution and advance the Trump campaign.

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

There is something terribly wrong when a state party platform refuses to pass a resolution that condemns offensive. And it’s especially disturbing when the reason for that refusal is that it would reflect poorly on your party’s candidate for president who traffics in such remarks regularly. However, that’s where Trump has led his party, a party that is now on record as officially supporting remarks that are degrading to women and minorities. Congratulations.

Donald Trump Obsesses Over Hillary Clinton’s Past But Considers His Own Off Limits

The issue that Donald Trump has made the centerpiece of campaign against Hillary Clinton has been the timeworn marital difficulties she and her husband endured in the 1990s. Trump glommed onto this issue in response to Clinton’s advocacy of women’s rights in contrast to his own overt misogyny and his opposition to the reforms that matter most to women.

Donald Trump

Trump bitterly complained about Clinton asserting that he has “a penchant for sexism” and responded by accusing her of playing The Woman Card. But his defense rested entirely on dredging up the distant past of Bill Clinton’s infidelities and some baseless accusations that Hillary destroyed the lives of the women involved. He clearly doesn’t understand the nature of women’s issues or why they hate him so much. And despite Trump’s hyperbolic ranting that Bill Clinton was “the worst abuser of women in the history of politics,” a Fox News poll found that when women were asked who they thought was “more respectful of women” – Bill Clinton or Donald Trump – they responded overwhelming that it was Bill Clinton (55% to 31%).

Nevertheless, Trump continues to sharpen his attacks on Clinton’s past with every stump speech he delivers and every phone-in interview he gives to the media. This obsession with the past has now come back to haunt him. An audio from the 1990s has emerged that features Trump pretending to be his own fictional publicist. It was recorded for an interview with People Magazine. Trump is denying that the voice on the recording is his, but all the evidence suggests that he’s lying.

First of all, it sounds exactly like him and he repeatedly uses jargon that is unique and identifiable. In addition, the reporter from People Magazine says that not only was she certain that it was Trump, but that he admitted it afterwards saying that it was joke. Finally, CNN had a voice expert compare the recording to known recordings Trump and he said, with scientific certainty, that it was Trump. In response to the abundance of proof that Trump did perpetrate this fraud, and is lying about it now, Trump complained that

“You’re going so low to talk about something that took place 25 years ago whether or not I made a phone call? Let’s get on to more current subjects.”

Alrighty then. Presumably Trump will stop talking about the Clintons’ past marital troubles that took place 25 years ago. And if you believe that, then you’re already gullible enough to be a Trump supporter. And like most Trump supporters, it doesn’t bother you that your candidate assumed fake identities to brag about his business and sexual conquests, or lied about doing so when he was caught.

There are real differences between the old Clinton news and the old Trump news. The old Clinton news is not actually news. It has been known for decades. It also does not reflect on her behavior or credibility as a public leader. In fact, it ought to be regarded as a measure of honor that she and Bill managed to repair their marriage, respect their vows, and preserve their family. On the other hand, Trump’s news is indeed relevant today because it has never been revealed before. It’s actually news. And it plainly reflects on his character, defining him as a deceitful impostor and a liar.

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

It would nice if, the next time Trump goes off on the Clinton affairs, the media reminds him that he said that such past occurrences were “going so low” and should be dismissed in favor of “more current subjects.” Somehow I think that may be too much to expect from the media that made Trump in the first place. They have yet to learn the most basic lessons on how to interview him. Like preventing him from dodging questions, changing subjects, and filibustering with irrelevant trivialities. So that would be nice too.

Donald Trump Channels Sarah Palin In Incoherent Anti-Amazon.com Rant

In the past year Sean Hannity has hosted Donald Trump more than any other candidate for president. In fact, Trump’s visits account for about a third of the time of all candidate appearances on the program. So no one will be surprised that Trump was Hannity’s guest again last night (video below) giving him an opportunity to lash out at a media critic with his trademark hollow bluster.

Donald Trump Sarah Palin

It’s fair to say that Trump is never particularly rational in his tirades against critics. He generally avoids factual arguments and sticks with childish insults and irrelevancies that distract from the main issue. But in last night’s performance Trump ventured further off into confused hysteria that sounded more like one of Sarah Palin’s disjointed word salad babbling. The only way to properly convey the deranged oration is to let Trump do it himself. Here is what he told Hannity about his theory that Jeff Bezos, owner of both Amazon.com and the Washington Post, is engaged in a conspiracy against him in order to avoid paying taxes and preserve his alleged monopoly.

Trump: It’s interesting that you say that, because every hour we’re getting calls from reporters from The Washington Post, asking ridiculous questions, and I will tell you this is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos, who controls Amazon. Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He’s using The Washington Post for power, so the politicians in Washington don’t tax Amazon like they should be taxed. He’s getting absolutely away — he’s worried about me, and I think he said that to somebody, it was in some article, where he thinks I would go after him for anti-trust, because he’s got a huge anti-trust problem because he’s controlling so much. Amazon is controlling so much of what they’re doing, and what they’ve done is he bought this paper for practically nothing, and he’s using that as a tool for political power, against me and against other people and I’ll tell you what, we can’t let him get away with it. So he’s got about 20, 25, I just heard they’re taking these really bad stories — I mean they’re, you know, wrong – I don’t even say bad, they’re wrong and in many cases, they have no proper information and they’re putting them together, they’re slopping them together, and they’re going to do a book and the book is going to be all false stuff, because the stories are so wrong and the reporters, I mean, one after another — so what they’re doing is he’s using that as a political instrument to try and stop anti-trust, which he thinks I believe he’s anti-trust, in other words what he’s got is a monopoly and he wants to make sure I don’t get in. So, it’s one of those things, but I’ll tell you what, I’ll tell you what, what he’s doing’s wrong and the people are being — the whole system is rigged. You see a case like that, the whole system is rigged, whether it’s Hillary or whether it’s Bezos.

Sheesh, take a breath. Trump speaks like a paranoid schizophrenic in run-on sentences that weave around poorly expressed and incomplete thoughts. His fear that Bezos is coming after him is rooted in sheer delusion. Trump doesn’t say how Amazon is a monopoly, an assertion that ignores the reality of the online consumer goods market that includes behemoths like Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Target, Macy’s and many more. Nor does he explain the tax issue, although it is likely related to the collection of sales taxes from which all online enterprises are exempt under certain circumstances. Is Trump proposing to eliminate that popular exemption? He does go on at length, though, about the sloppiness of the Post’s proposed book that he hasn’t seen and hasn’t even been written.

Of course, the attacks on Amazon are just Trump’s way of retaliating against the Washington Post, whose Associate Editor Bob Woodward recently disclosed that “We have 20 people working on Trump, we’re going to do a book, we’re doing articles about every phase of his life” This is nothing unusual in the ordinary course of vetting candidates for high office and the Post is doing the same for Hillary Clinton. But from Trump’s perspective it’s an unholy invasion of privacy and a flagrant political attack. Consequently, an hysterical Trump aims both intellectually empty barrels at, not just the Post, but Amazon and its CEO Bezos. And fanboy Hannity’s response: “Wow!”

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