Buried By Fox News: Shooting Of SF Woman By Immigrant Was An Accident

Last month Kate Steinle was killed while walking with her father on a pier in San Francisco. Her tragic death very quickly took on a tabloid hue as conservative media outlets latched unto the news that an undocumented immigrant was arrested for the crime.

To the political opportunists exploiting this tragedy it was a chance to vilify all immigrants as menacing invaders who will eventually resort to committing atrocities. Fox News in particular went to great lengths to build a narrative of legions of “illegals” swarming the nation and randomly murdering innocent citizens.

Fox News

Because the suspect, Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, had recently been released from custody by the San Francisco Sheriff’s Department, the issue of “Sanctuary Cities” became a central target of the media criticism. Bill O’Reilly took a leading role in the fear mongering and even launched a drive to pass what he called “Kate’s Law:” legislation that would impose a mandatory five year sentence for undocumented aliens who are deported and return to the United States.

The merits of such a law could be reasonably debated, but the partisan atmosphere surrounding its introduction and its advocacy by an alleged “news” network were entirely inappropriate and created a distraction from the substance of the matter. What’s more, O’Reilly’s hypocrisy was evident in that he never advocated for legal remedies following the deadly shootings in a Lafayette movie theater, or a Charleston church, or a Connecticut elementary school. In those cases there was no convenient scapegoat to demonize, just the shared constant of gun violence which right-wingers regard as an acceptable consequence of their perceived right for any person to bear any arms at any time or place.

In addition to O’Reilly’s activism, the proposed bill was taken up by at least two Republican presidential candidates. Sen. Ted Cruz introduced a draft of the bill in the Senate. But it was Donald Trump who elevated the issue to ludicrous heights. He brought it up repeatedly during his campaign stump speeches and used it as a perverse affirmation of his previous racist comments aimed at immigrants who he called criminals, drug dealers, and rapists. Never mind that the undocumented immigrant population in the U.S. has a lower rate of criminal activity than native-born citizens. So far as Trump is concerned, having one example of a felonious immigrant is enough to label all immigrants as felons.

There is just one problem. Now that the conclusion jumpers have made their case against Lopez-Sanchez in the Steinle matter, the inconvenient unveiling of facts discovered from the actual police investigation are getting in the way of their anti-immigrant narrative. It turns out that the shooting might not have been a senseless act of brutality by a foreign animal. The evidence presented in the suspect’s preliminary hearing by a police inspector indicates that Steinle’s death appears more likely to have been an accident.

“The single bullet that struck and killed Kate Steinle, 32, in broad daylight on San Francisco’s Pier 14 in July appears to have ricocheted off of the pier walkway prior to hitting her, according to expert testimony provided Wednesday during the second day of the murder suspect’s preliminary hearing. Officials say the gun Francisco Lopez Sanchez is accused of firing was not actually pointed at Steinle, but at the ground.”

So this wasn’t a case of a sub-human alien thug mindlessly exterminating America’s helpless womenfolk after all. This evidence is consistent with reports published following the arrest of Lopez-Sanchez who told the police in his confession that he had found the gun and fired it accidentally. It’s a striking new development that destroys the right’s ability to exploit this affair to further vilify immigrants.

So how does Fox News handle these revelations? By ignoring them entirely of course. After making the Steinle killing a staple of their programming for weeks, Fox has not aired a single story about the disclosures in the preliminary hearing. And naturally, Bill O’Reilly said nothing about it on his program last night. This new information is a complete embarrassment for O’Reilly and his network who mischaracterized the facts for their own purposes before they actually had any. So now they have to suppress the story in order to keep from having to apologize and retract their prior biased reporting.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

This, however, is standard operating procedure for Fox News. They have never been concerned about factual reporting. Their entire reason for being is to propagandize on behalf of an extreme right-wing agenda. Therefore, early speculative stories that cast negative aspersions on their ideological enemies are broadcast frequently and with little vetting. But when exculpatory evidence later becomes available it is dismissed and ignored so as not to contradict their previous false perversions of journalism. It’s dishonest, irresponsible, unethical, and it’s the Fox way.

Donald Trump Is Right! The Media Is ‘Ridiculous’ For Covering Him Live

The Doctrine of the Broken Clock has come into play with some recent remarks by Republican front-runner Donald Trump. That is, despite distinguishing himself as being wrong about pretty much everything, he said something that happens to be worth consideration without even knowing it.

Donald Trump

It was at a rally in Alabama (video below) where Trump assumed a mock state of despair and complained that…

“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.”

Exactly! What is wrong with the media? Even after Trump taunts them about how tightly they are wound around his fat finger, they still bow down to him. Even after he correctly notes that it’s ridiculous, they persist in following him around like lovesick puppies. Even though there is nothing in Trump’s stump speeches that makes them newsworthy, other than some fresh bit of noxious racism or ignorance, his arrogant mugging is carried live. His circus sideshow offers no justification for preempting regular programming to broadcast his ego-ranting as if the fate of the nation depended on it, but they do it anyway. Why?

There is no precedent for how the media is covering this carnival barker. No other candidate gets this much attention. Could it have something to with Trump’s reality show persona, his penchant for dumbfounding soundbites, and the media hunger for ratings? Obviously it does. But none of that falls within even the broadest definition of news, and the media is whoring itself in a quest for ratings and the advertising dollars they bring.

Even Bernie Sanders, who is outperforming Trump by every metric, isn’t treated this way. That’s right, Sanders is beating Trump in head-to-head polling. He is drawing bigger crowds. He has better (i.e. positive) favorability ratings. And while Trump’s popularity is a media-hyped myth created by the quantity of GOP candidates, Sanders is popular with a broad cross-section of the American electorate. What’s more, when Sanders speaks he actually addresses real problems and offers real solutions, as opposed to Trump’s vapid cliches and narcissism. True, Sanders doesn’t have a hat with an asinine slogan on it that bitches about America not being great, but his hair is at least as notorious. Still, no live coverage for him because the press knows that he isn’t likely to start screaming the “N” word or slap an immigrant orphan across the face.

The media should cover Trump like any other candidate. No more, no less. By arbitrarily providing live broadcasts of only his campaign speeches they are violating their professional duties by serving as the PR team for one candidate. Trump’s public appearances are pep rallies for his own aggrandizement, not news events. Even his press conferences have no business getting live coverage. When has the media done that for any other candidate?

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

The live coverage needs to stop, or at least be reserved for only events that warrant it for their news value. Absent that, the networks should register as lobbyists for the candidate and be required to report their airtime as in-kind donations to the campaign. This used to be true mainly for Fox News, but now all the cable news networks are exhibiting the same lack of journalistic ethics to benefit a raging demagogue whose primary appeal is that he could spontaneously combust at any moment.

[Update] As evidence of the faulty priorities of the press, President Obama gave a speech today in New Orleans on the ten year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina that was properly carried live by all three cable news nets. Well, except for Fox News who cut away after less than two minutes. So for a presidential commemoration of an historic event that devastated a major U.S. city, cost the lives of more than 1,800 Americans, and displaced tens of thousands more, Fox News could only spare a little over a minute. But for Trump’s stump speech they stay live for an hour or more.

Reporters Shot On Live TV: Glenn Beck Says God Did It To Warn Him

Today another tragedy occurred when a gunman took the lives of two innocent people in the course of doing their jobs. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were shot by a former colleague, Vester Lee Flanagan (aka Bryce Williams), as they were conducting an interview. And predictably the media has sprung into action with blanket coverage that is mostly comprised of repetition, speculation, and sensationalism.

The other predictable response comes from self-interested parties who seek to gain attention and support by exploiting the pain and grief of the victims. Already Breitbart News has published an article with a belligerent headline that baselessly declared the crime to be a Race Murder In Virginia.” Rush Limbaugh used the story to advocate for arming all reporters as if there is a raging war on journalists. Never mind that all the evidence currently shows that this was a workplace dispute where the workers just happened to be in local television reporting. And Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson, in the early hours of confusion following the murders, complained that they haven’t been designated a hate crime.

Glenn Beck Messiah

However, what appears to be the most perverse and far-fetched take on the matter so far came from Glenn Beck (video below). I know, try to contain your shock. Beck sees something far more consequential than the sad reality of lost lives due to a disturbed individual with access to a deadly weapon. For Beck this was a message direct from God to him:

“I think God is giving me one final warning. He’s telling us, ‘You got one more chance, this is it.’ I’m telling you this is it … This is God saying, ‘Last chance.'”

Beck went on to remind his radio disciples that fifteen years ago he said that if…

“…you ever start to hear me reading right from the Scriptures, you know we’re at the end. I’m reading today right from the Scriptures … I’m telling you, as we watch things like a shooting on television and a shooting in the street, this is the beginning of sorrows. This is the beginning!”

Setting aside that Beck can’t seem to make up his mind as to whether this is the beginning or the end, he is plainly convinced that the shooting in Virginia was the work of God who did it to warn Beck of impending doom from the Heavens. The fact that a disgruntled ex-employee killed his former colleagues, something that unfortunately happens with a fair degree of frequency, is proof to Beck that the Lord is losing patience with the human race and is about to condemn us to eternal damnation. Of course, Beck has made predictions of The Perfect Storm that would herald the End Times in the past so often it is more like a running joke than a prophecy.

The depressing inevitability of opportunists taking advantage of tragedy is a sorry statement on the nature of our society. But it is a constant that can be predicted with near total accuracy. What is sometimes less predictable is just how low these callous vulgarians can sink.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Be Afraid: Following Trump Focus Group, Fox News Word Doctor’s ‘Legs Are Shaking’

There is a palpable fear within the Republican Party that is directly attributable to the alleged popularity of their resident loudmouth blowhard and racist demagogue, Donald Trump. The fact that Trump’s offensive reality show antics has dominated the GOP primary, effectively suppressing the media presence of every other candidate, is causing the party regulars to tremble at the notion that he might actually have a shot at the nomination (he doesn’t).

Donald Trump

While their fear of Trump prevailing in the primaries is largely unfounded, they are right to be mortified by what Trump’s success with some Republican voters means to the party and its prospects in the general election next fall. He is cementing the party’s reputation as antagonistic to minorities and political moderates, but even worse, he is appealing to an ignorance that is rampant on the right.

To illustrate the frightful attitudes of Trump’s supporters, Fox News “Word Doctor” Frank Luntz conducted a focus group to find out what drew them to the cartoon-brained billionaire. The results painted a picture of a community of dunces who have mistaken being vulgar and obnoxious for straight talk. After listening to the group, Luntz, who Trump has called a “a low class slob,” told the assembled reporters that…

“You guys understand how significant this is? This is real. I’m having trouble processing it. Like, my legs are shaking. I want to put the Republican leadership behind this mirror and let them see. They need to wake up. They don’t realize how the grassroots have abandoned them. Donald Trump is punishment to a Republican elite that wasn’t listening to their grassroots.”

What a load of bull. If Republicans have anything to fear it is the Frankenstein monster of their own making. If they need to wake up it is from the nightmare doomsday scenarios that they have been promulgating for the last seven years that portrayed President Obama as a dictator who would destroy the economy, confiscate their guns, outlaw Christianity, and declare the country the new capital of the Global Islamic Caliphate.

The grassroots of the GOP didn’t abandon the party. They were shuffled into a Tea Party subdivision that has been whining about exactly the same things that Trump’s supporters are whining about. In fact, Trump has assumed the mantle of Tea Party leadership that Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and others tried and failed to assume. He isn’t punishment for not listening, he is the manifestation of having listened and taken their idiotic yammering seriously. Some of the reasons given by the group for supporting Trump were indistinguishable from the bellyaching of the Tea Party. For instance…

  • “I think America is pissed. Trump’s the first person that came out and voiced exactly what everybody’s been saying all along.”
  • “When Trump talks, it may not be presented in a pristine, PC way, but we’ve been having that crap pushed to us for the past 40 years.”
  • “I used to sleep on my front porch with the door wide open, and now everyone has deadbolts. I believe the best days of the country are behind us.”
  • “I’m frustrated beyond belief. I feel like I’ve been lied to. Nothing’s getting better.”
    “We know his goal is to make America great again. It’s on his hat.”
  • “We’ve got to show the Republicans that we’ve had it with them, that we will not be there every single time. They treat us like crap and they lie to us and promise us things and then they expect us to vote again.”
  • “He’s not afraid. He keeps prodding on even if people give him negative press. He doesn’t change and apologize.”

These cretins are articulating a cacophony of contempt for America. They are inconsolable that it doesn’t resemble the fantasy they have of the white, Christian, utopia they think they were promised by God who wrote the Constitution. What’s more, they are achingly stupid. They blindly repeat the mantra that Trump is expressing what they feel, but Trump hasn’t offered any actual policies that address any real problems, so how do they know? Well, they know because it’s written on his hat. So there.

The responses from this focus group are not unique. Last month John Heilemann of Bloomberg News assembled a focus group that felt pretty much the same way. What’s interesting about this is that the character traits for which they praise Trump would be considered abhorrent if they came from Obama. If the President was described as speaking for people who were “pissed,” who thought America’s best days are behind us, didn’t care about negative press, and refused to apologize, these same Trumpbaggers would holler at the top of their lungs about what an arrogant, unpatriotic, egotistical, fascist he is.

It isn’t Trump they like. It’s the undisguised hatred and bigotry aimed at the real objects of their disgust. That begins with our African-American President and extends to all progressive sectors of society including Latinos, women, union members, teachers, scientists, and an array of diverse spiritual and secular citizens. It is not surprising that Trump’s most staunch supporters are America’s white supremacists, who regard him as the champion of disaffected whites. Although Trump espouses a platform that is identical to that of every other Republican candidate, his supporters prefer him because the others aren’t as crude or as perceivably filled with hate.

So these focus groups serve a valuable purpose in exposing Trump’s followers as the hostile and ignorant swine that they are. And to the extent that other Republican candidates, voters, and media fail to renounce it, they are just as bad. That’s what should be making Mr. Luntz’s legs shake.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

And for a little background on Luntz, enjoy this segment from the Daily Show in which he is featured.

Hillary Clinton’s Fox News Problem

This evening on Fox News Shannon Bream, filling in for Megyn Kelly, did a segment about how dismal Hillary Clinton’s future is now that her poll numbers have descended to unfathomable depths, particularly with regard to favorability.

Hillary Clinton Favorability

Like much of the rest of Fox’s recent coverage of Clinton, the impression made is that Clinton has about three weeks before she will drop out of the race and report to prison. To open the segment Bream gleefully reported that…

“A new poll now showing Clinton may be more disliked than she has been in decades. As a brand new survey from CNN shows her unfavorability rating is now at a whopping 53%. A number that Clinton has seen just one other time in twenty-three years of polling.”

What the “fair and balanced” propagandists at Fox are leaving out is that Clinton’s favorable rating in the CNN poll that they referenced is better than all of the Republicans that were polled. Clinton scored 44% favorable. That compares to Donald Trump at 36% and Jeb Bush at 34%. What’s more, Clinton’s unfavorable rating is lower than her most likely opponents. She pulled 53% while Trump and Bush were higher at 59% and 56% respectively.

Clinton has had the honor of being ranked as the most admired woman in the world nineteen times in Gallup’s annual survey. She received that honor the last thirteen years in a row. It is not particularly surprising that in an election year where seventeen Republican candidates are bashing her relentlessly her public image might suffer. Add to that the effect of the smear job that Fox engages in every day and it would be a miracle if her numbers didn’t decline a bit.

Notwithstanding those assaults, Clinton is still faring better than her GOP rivals who have had very little mud thrown at them. She is still beating them in head-to-head match-ups. And her support in the Democratic Party is unwavering.

What Fox News is trying to do is project their open disgust for her in the hopes that it will harm her electoral prospects next year. That’s also why they keep promoting Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden. They obviously hate them just as much as they hate her, but for the time being they are happy to use them as wedges to create chaos for the Democrats.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

If Clinton’s 53% unfavorable rating can be characterized as “whopping” by Fox News, then what would they call Trump’s 59% or Bush’s 56%? Of course the answer is that they wouldn’t call it anything at all because they wouldn’t devote a segment of a primetime program to their “favorability problems.” In the Fox world everyone loves Republicans and they always will win every election. At least that’s how they present it to their dimwitted audience who are later shocked when they lose.

Watergate Envy: Fox News Desperately Lusts For A Clinton Scandal They Can’t Have

The ferocity with which Fox News is chasing the story about Hillary Clinton’s email is becoming a pathetic tale of desperation and jealousy. It’s not enough that they report wild speculation as fact, they are determined to shape their coverage into what they regard as the Valhalla of scandals: Watergate.

Hillary Clinton Watergate Envy

For the record, the Watergate affair involved blatantly criminal activity like burglary, political corruption, bribery, obstruction of justice, and presidential abuse of power. It began as a plot by the Nixon White House to steal private documents from the Democratic Party in order to secure his reelection by fraud. Then it evolved into a cover-up that included threats, deception, and million dollar payoffs.

The attempt to analogize Watergate to Clinton’s use of personal email accounts on a private computer server stretch the boundaries of absurdity. Even if the allegations that there were classified documents involved were true (and there is no evidence of that at this time), there is absolutely no suggestion, by even her harshest critics, that she was motivated by any larcenous effort to advance her own interests financially or politically. In other words, there was no intent to commit a crime.

However, to hear Fox News tell it, Clinton’s email controversy is identical to the felonies committed by Nixon’s thugs, many of whom went to prison for their crimes. Today Fox News contributor Meghan McCain (John’s daughter) wondered if “this could be this generation’s Watergate.” Yesterday Fox’s Special Report aired an entire segment devoted to baseless conjecture about Watergate. Also yesterday, Fox’s judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano tried to compare Clinton’s use of personal emails to Nixon’s habit of secretly recording everything that took place in the Oval Office. He never really got around to explaining what was similar about it. It was enough, for Fox’s purposes, just to plant the slanderous suggestion. Fox contributor John Bolton also weighed in to imply some conspiratorial connection between Clinton’s current email flak and her service on the Democratic Senate staff that investigated Nixon.

There was much more of this Watergating going on at Fox on other programs as they went all out to align Clinton with what is perhaps the worst political scandal in American history. But Watergate belongs to the Republicans no matter how much they whine about it. And whine they do. Before the Clinton campaign launched it was a regular obsession with Fox to compare anything associated with President Obama to Watergate. From Benghazi, to the IRS, to Libya, to Fast and Furious, and even to UFOs, Fox saw everything through their Watergate filter. [See News Corpse’s Illustrated Guide To The Fox News Obsession With Watergate]

Now they want to transfer their shame to Democrats so badly that they have lost all rational comprehension of what Watergate even entailed. Their accusations just seem anguished and impotent. But don’t let that make you think they will abandon their fetish for projecting Watergate’s stigma on Clinton or other Democrats. They are fully committed to their rewriting of history and they know that their dimwitted audience will eat it up.

Fox News Takes Donald Trump’s Stupid Immigration Policy And Makes It Even Worse

This year’s Sarah Palin is really stirring up the LIV (Low Information Voter) constituency. With an astonishing flair for melodrama, Donald Trump’s candidacy has assumed Palin’s role as both village idiot and court jester. And his rhetoric is certainly living up to his campaign slogan.

Donald Trump Hell Hole

This weekend Trump solidified his position by releasing an utterly absurd immigration policy that not only fails to solve any problems, but actually exacerbates them in most cases. Among the more ludicrous proposals are:

Mass deportation of an estimated eleven million undocumented residents.
This would cost billions of dollars, take decades, ruin businesses, and rip apart families. Trump was asked by Chuck Todd about the family matter and he responded that he would keep them together by deporting all of them, including the ones who are U.S. citizens.

Ending birthright citizenship.
To accomplish this Trump would have to get a constitutional amendment passed to repeal the 14th Amendment, which takes years and the cooperation of a huge majority of Congress and state legislatures. Clearly Trump knows nothing about the subject because he later told Bill O’Reilly that the 150 year old constitutional law had not been tested and would not hold up in court.

Triple the number of Immigration, Customs, and Enforcement officers.
Small government conservatives will probably be thrilled with the thought of hiring 10,000 more federal employees, plus the staff to support them and affiliated hiring at other agencies to handle the legal and administrative duties that would be required. And all to reduce illegal immigration which is already on the decline.

Defund sanctuary cities.
By this Trump means cutting off federal grants to any city which refuses to cooperate with federal law enforcement. So he thinks that giving the feds more power over the states will excite his right-wing base.

Requirement to hire American workers first (before granting visas for foreign workers).
Somebody should tell Trump that this is already required by current law. Although he probably knows because he is a notorious abuser of these regulations. Reuters has reported that Trump’s businesses “have sought to import at least 1,100 foreign workers on temporary visas since 2000, according to U.S. Department of Labor data.”

With all of the ridiculousness in this alleged immigration policy, it is interesting to note that it wasn’t yet ridiculous enough for Fox News. In an interview today (video below), Fox anchor Bill Hemmer asked his Fox Business Network colleague Lou Dobbs about Trump’s immigration plan. Dobb’s was wholly supportive and praised Trump for being “the only candidate who’s had the guts to say we’re going to deport them all.” However, Dobbs, like Trump, could not explain how it would be possible to do that. He was then asked about Trump’s ludicrous assertion that birthright citizenship, and not jobs, “remains the biggest magnet for illegal immigration.” Dobb’s agreed and elaborated saying…

“I think he’s partly right. I would argue that also our welfare system that is sitting here being handed out without hesitation. ObamaCare is being provided without even a question about legal status. People are being allowed to vote by the millions in this country who are illegal because we’re not checking citizenship and we’ve got a government actively fighting voter identification which assures the integrity of our electoral system.”

Dobbs’ attempt to enhance Trump’s already faulty set of proposals only makes it much worse. Either Dobbs is frightfully ignorant or he is deliberately lying. First of all, undocumented immigrants are not eligible for most types of welfare, including food stamps and housing assistance. What’s more, they actually pay far more into the federal treasury than they will ever see come back from any source. They pay about ten billion dollars annually in state and local taxes. And over a decade they have contributed over 100 billion dollars to Social Security, which they are not eligible to receive.

Secondly, Dobbs assertion that undocumented residents are getting ObamaCare is simply false. The Affordable Care Act explicitly prohibits undocumented immigrants from purchasing health insurance from the marketplace or from receiving any premium credits or other benefits.

Finally, Dobbs’ completely unsupported allegation that “millions” of undocumented immigrants are being allowed to vote is just plain nuts. Not only are there not millions, the evidence of more than a handful is hard to come by. The American Immigration Council compiled research that shows that “repeated investigations over the years have found no indication that systematic vote fraud by non-citizens is anything other than the product of overactive imaginations.”

Lou Dobbs offered up three theories that he felt compelled to add to Trump’s already bogus claim that birthright citizenship was the “biggest magnet for illegal immigration.” And on all three counts he was wrong. Nevertheless, his disinformation was broadcast to Fox’s gullible audience without comment or correction or rebuttal. Anchor Hemmer simply smiled and nodded in agreement and plugged Dobbs’ show on FBN. And that’s another reason why Fox News viewers have been found to be more ignorant than viewers of any other news network.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Fox News Is So Terrified Of Hillary Clinton That They Invent Fake Email Scandal

For months there has been a concerted effort by Fox News to torpedo the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton. They have done it by relentlessly airing stories about alleged scandals that they have trumpeted with glee would end her White House aspirations. Those stories include everything from Benghazi to the Clinton Foundation, to her aide Huma Abedin’s alleged ties to Muslim extremists, to her private computer server. Never mind that there has never been a smidgen of actual evidence showing that she had engaged in thing unlawful or unethical. Just the wild accusations repeated ad nauseum on Fox News is enough to plant the notion in the mind of the public and drive down her poll numbers for trustworthiness.

Benghazi

The mission of Fox News is obviously to sabotage the campaign of the strongest Democratic candidate for the 2016 presidential election. They know that Clinton, even after the smear crusade, still manages to out poll every Republican challenger. Consequently, they need to persist in the propaganda blitz until they succeed in bringing her down.

While previous attempts focused heavily on Benghazi, the inability to make their false charges stick has driven Fox to elevate a different scandalette to the forefront. So now Benghazi has been at least temporarily sidelined in favor of the dreaded lost emails. What Fox is trying to turn into a political frenzy is the allegation that Clinton had sent or received classified email communications using a private computer server rather than one hosted by the feds at the Department of State. This, they imply, may have exposed sensitive information to unfriendly nations.

The first point that needs to be made is that recent reports have revealed that hackers have already trespassed into the official government servers that store data for millions of federal employees. However, there is no evidence whatsoever that Clinton’s server security was ever breached by anyone. So Clinton may have actually protected the information she was handling by segregating it on her server while the feds were being hacked. The second pertinent fact is that there is no evidence that any classified emails were sent or received through Clinton’s server.

However, what really makes this media farce so dishonest is that the so-called journalists at Fox News are fabricating a controversy that doesn’t exist in reality. They spend endless hour of valuable airtime yammering about missing emails and mysterious servers. Even though Clinton, in an unprecedented display of transparency, turned over 55,000 pages of emails. This was never done by other Secretaries of State who also used private servers. Nor was it done by her GOP opponents who as governors did the same thing.

To make matters worse, Fox News completely ignores previous incidents when emails went missing. For instance, when the Bush administration was under investigation for various improprieties, they suddenly announced that, not thousands, but millions of emails had mysteriously vanished. This scandal even included allegations that then-White House operative Karl Rove had been communicating with a private server located at the Republican National Committee.

At the time, Bush’s Press Secretary Dana Perino (now a host on Fox News), insisted it was an unfortunate but innocent computer glitch. This is the same Perino who now calls Clinton’s email situation a criminal offense. And at a congressional investigation of the Bush matter, the GOP’s Clinton inquisitionist, Darrell Issa, also tried to dismiss the Bush debacle as a glitch. Furthermore, then-CNN reporter Ed Henry (now also on Fox News) speculated that the Bush affair might be a violation of the Federal Presidential Records Act.

As if that weren’t enough, the Fox News family has another email scandal in its past. When Rupert Murdoch’s British newspapers were caught hacking into the phone and email accounts of private citizens, celebrities, politicians, and royals, they tried to cover it up by making millions of emails disappear. This destruction of evidence was not merely alluded to, but was proven with internal, News Corp. memos describing their policy of destroying emails “that could be unhelpful in the context of future litigation”.

So you have to wonder what moral authority anyone at Fox News has to complain about Clinton’s emails, which have never been proven to contain anything untoward. Clearly Fox isn’t interested in compliance with the law or good government. They are deploying a well-coordinated attack on a political rival whom they desperately fear. And they wonder why no one regards them as a reputable news network.

Donald Trump: Fox News CEO Roger Ailes Is My Bitch

Ever since the Fox News Republican primary debate there has been an openly acrimonious brawl between Donald Trump and Fox News. The notoriously thinned-skinned whiny-baby Trump was offended that debate co-moderator Megyn Kelly had the audacity to ask him about some things he actually said that were denigrating to women. Subsequently he publicly attacked Kelly saying that she was “overrated” and a “lightweight.” These juvenile insults were later escalated with Trump alluding to Kelly’s menstrual cycle saying that “there was blood coming out of her eyes, or blood coming out of her wherever.”

Donald Trump Roger Ailes

Trump’s assault on Kelly was actually proof that the criticisms of him as a misogynist were accurate. After all, during the debate Bret Baier asked the candidates whether they would support the eventual GOP nominee and pledge not to run as an independent, a question obviously aimed at Trump. Baier also asked Trump to account for his support of universal health care and other liberal initiatives and candidates, including Hillary Clinton. Chris Wallace questioned him about his evidence-less charge that Mexico was sending their criminals to the U.S. Wallace also challenged him on his four bankruptcies. All of those were uncharacteristically tough questions from Fox, but neither of the male moderators became repeated and enduring targets of Trump’s wrath.

This spectacle played out in the media, and especially on Fox News, as Fox CEO Roger Ailes came to the defense of his primetime anchor. It built to a head last week when it was reported that Trump and Ailes had spoken by phone and negotiated a truce. Trump said that Ailes was “a great guy” and had promised to be fair. Although isn’t that what Fox has been promising with it’s “fair and balanced” slogan since they launched?

Well, that fragile truce has apparently already crumbled. Trump was interviewed yesterday by wingnut radio talker Steve Malzberg. During the discussion Trump responded to the fracas with Fox and lavished praise on Ailes. However, he also latched on to an ego-driven conspiracy theory that the announcement that Kelly is taking a summer vacation is actually some sort of punishment for her alleged mistreatment of him. Fox News, of course, immediately repudiated Trump’s assertion as “wildly irresponsible” and “downright bizarre.”

The bickering continued this morning as Trump alighted in Iowa in his Trumpocopter. While taking questions from reporters on the still smoldering conflict, the Immaculate Trump insisted that he has made no mistakes and his popularity in the polls (which is a media delusion) is proof of his righteousness. When asked to comment directly he said that “I love Roger, but all you have to do is ask him who won.” That’s a direct shot at Ailes’ formidable gut. Trump is essentially bringing Ailes to heel by forcing him to admit that he is Trump’s bitch. That’s not the sort of thing that Ailes takes in stride.

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With the truce broken, who knows where this will end. But there is a bigger problem here than the inflated egos of Trump and Ailes. A so-called “news” network should not be engaged in an open feud with a subject of their political coverage, even if that subject is a babbling crackpot. And a candidate for the GOP nomination for president should not be alienating the PR division of the Republican Party (aka Fox News). So this affair threatens to be detrimental to everyone involved. It’s as bad for journalism as it is for democracy. And it is a wholly Republican phenomenon.

Fox News Suddenly Embraces The Environment To Scold The EPA For Toxic Spill In Colorado

The science deniers at Fox News have spent years dismissing the claims of environmentalists on matters relating to everything from water and air quality, to endangered species, to clean energy, to climate change. The network has vigorously denounced advocates for reform as propagating hoaxes or having ulterior financial motives. And always at the top of their list of evildoers is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Fox News

Pretty much every Republican presidential candidate has called for some measure of interference with the EPA’s mandate, up to and including abolishing the agency that began with an executive order by Republican president Richard Nixon.

In Colorado last week an EPA crew accidentally breached a debris dam that resulted in a massive flow of arsenic, lead, and other toxins into the Animas River. The crew had been working to repair leaks that were already leaching toxins into the river. It was an unfortunate accident that occurred during a commendable effort to restore the local ecosystem.

However, on Fox News this became a villainous atrocity by pernicious characters who aspire to deliberately destroy America. They have had numerous stories that explicitly and disparagingly cite the EPA’s responsibility for the spill as if it were intentional. Furthermore, they go out of their way to report the outrage of the local victims. What’s interesting about that editorial spin is that they never do the same when it is a corporation that was responsible.

For instance, when a pipeline burst near Williston, North Dakota, Fox didn’t once address the “anger” it may have caused. Instead, they interviewed the pipeline’s owner who gave assurances that everything would be fine. Fox covered another incident in West Virginia the same way. In North Carolina, toxic sludge from a coal ash dump polluted the Dan River, which was already contaminated from a previous spill. There, Fox quoted a Duke Energy spokesperson who downplayed the incident saying that “no immediate action was necessary.”

In story after story Fox declined to criticize the guilty energy companies whose greed created environmental nightmares. They pointedly neglected to advocate for penalties or reform. But in this story, where the EPA is the culprit, Fox repeats their name with noticeable sneers and insists that the agency needs to be reigned in. It is the most disingenuous, hypocritical, and self-serving expression of environmentalism imaginable.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Surely the events that led to the EPA crew’s accident should be investigated and all efforts to prevent further incidents should be taken. But Fox News obviously doesn’t care about that. They only care about slandering a government entity that was trying to improve an already harmful situation. As opposed to the energy companies whose accidents occur while they are trying to line their pockets.

And it should not be forgotten that many of those same polluting energy companies are advertisers on Fox News and other Fox media outlets. So as the corporations profit from their dirty enterprise, Fox News profits right along with them. Indeed, Fox has a financial incentive to bury bad news about their advertisers and to exaggerate accusations against their foes at the EPA.