Hypocrisy or Dementia? Donald Trump’s ‘Ridiculous Standard’ of the First 100 Days

Not that we need further evidence of Donald Trump’s mental unfitness to serve as president, but his latest Twitter tantrum gives us more anyway.

Trump Tweet 100 Days

So Trump is now dismissing the standard that he previously embraced and used to advance his agenda. And just to be certain, here he is saying it on video:

In addition to the obvious hypocrisy on display, Trump’s Contract with the American Voter (pdf) is a document of his utter failure. It consists of mainly things that he hasn’t achieved. What’s more, most voters don’t want him to achieve any of these things to begin with.

No wonder the most conspicuous achievement of his short tenure is having the lowest approval rating of any president ever.

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

Worst.President.Ever: Trump Hypes Biased Poll That Still Shows Him At 50 Percent Unfavorable

From the day Donald Trump was inaugurated he has suffered through the lowest approval ratings of any president on record. And his repeated failures in office haven’t helped to dig him out of that hole. Consequently, he resorts to diversionary tactics to take attention away from his floundering administration. More often than not that includes lashing out at the media, bragging about his November victory, or accusing President Obama, or other Democrats, of imaginary felonies.

Donald Trump

On Monday morning Trump employed another of his favorite diversions: promoting partisan polls that he thinks make him look good. He re-tweeted the Drudge Report which posted a link to Rasmussen Reports, a brazenly right-wing polling firm. Rassmussen published the results of their latest poll saying:

“The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Trump’s job performance. Fifty percent (50%) disapprove.

“This is the first time the president’s overall approval rating has been back in the 50s in nearly a month.”

The fact that Trump gets excited about a poll where as many people dislike him as like him shows how desperate he is for any good news. But since this is a Rasmussen poll, that achievement isn’t even credible. The RealClearPolitics average of all Trump polls puts him at negative nine percent. Rasmussen’s tie is the best showing of the last seven polls which range from negative six to negative twelve percent. The highest approval he reaches in any of them is 43 percent.

Further examination shows that even Rasmussen was not especially kind to Trump in the recent past. Two weeks ago Rasmussen had Trump down by eight points. The week before that he was down by twelve. So it’s rather startling that Trump surged to a tie in such a short time. Well, it would be for any pollster other than Rasmussen.

For some background, CNN’s Chris Cillizza published an article enumerating the reasons to be skeptical of Rasmussen. Among them are the pollster’s questionable methods of selecting a representative sample of voters. Or their automated telephone polling that excludes the younger demographic of cell phone users. But in general, Cillizza faults Rasmussen for failing to disclose their methodology:

“In an industry in which transparency is the name of the game, Rasmussen just doesn’t show very much of how they do what they do. That’s not to say what they do is wrong; it’s only to say we have no way of knowing how closely they adhere to accepted polling standards.”

He’s being generous. Rasmussen’s results vary widely from every other poll. And they are notorious for posting results that favor Republicans. Many media organization won’t cite them because their methods don’t satisfy the recognized standards for statistical analysis.

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

On a tangential point, it’s a little unseemly for a president to be flattering himself with poll results. I can’t think of another time when that was done outside of a campaign. It’s really just a form of low-grade propaganda when it comes direct from the White House. And for his trouble, Trump is relying on a pollster with little credibility for numbers that aren’t particularly positive. But when you’ve set records for low performance, and most of the country opposes you and your policies, I guess you take whatever crumbs fall onto your plate. And in Trump’s case, you pretend they are Creme Brulee and brag about having the best recipe ever.

FOX NEWS POLL: Trump Liked Less Than Bernie Sanders, Planned Parenthood, and ObamaCare

The sad saga of America’s most unpopular new president ever continues to sink to unprecedented depths. Donald Trump’s support exists within a narrow realm of alt-right bigots and the diehard GOP (Greedy One Percent). This administration repeatedly fumbles and embarrasses itself with poor policies and even worse execution. The result is that the American people are getting fed up with his incompetence and lies.

Donald Trump

On Thursday, Fox News, Trump’s favorite news source and official White House Ministry of Propaganda, released a new poll. The results may be a surprise to the President who expects blind loyalty and unwavering adoration. On most questions related to Trump and his agenda, the people were decidedly dissatisfied. Beginning with the foundational question of approval, respondents snubbed The Donald bitterly. Here is the ranking of what they regard as most favorable:

  • Bernie Sanders: 61%
  • Planned Parenthood: 57%
  • Obamacare: 50%
  • Mike Pence: 47%
  • Donald Trump: 44%

So the registered voters in this survey prefer a Democratic Socialist to Trump by 17 points. They also prefer Planned Parenthood, who he has promised to defund. And worst of all, from Trump’s perspective, the Affordable Care Act that he has obsessively ranted about repealing is more popular than he is. Did I mention that this is a Fox News poll?

In addition to these devastating results, the poll’s respondents have also wearied of his Twitter fetish. Fifty percent disapprove of his tweeting, with another 32 percent wishing he would be more cautious. And his most cherished policy pursuits rank at or near the bottom of the public’s list. For instance, when asked what one accomplishment would make them most happy their ranking was the following: Create jobs: 33 percent. Destroy ISIS: 23 percent. Cut taxes: 10 percent. Put Constitutionalists on the Supreme Court: 9 percent. Repeal and replace Obamacare: 7 percent. Reduce federal regulations: 3 percent. Build a border wall: 3 percent.

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

This is what passes for a mandate from the delusional president who still thinks he had more people at his inauguration than President Obama did. It’s the sort of deranged thinking you would expect after hearing him accuse his predecessor of wiretapping him. Trump is incapable of recognizing how much he’s despised by the nation that voted in greater numbers for his opponent. And this poll reinforces the cognitive break that Trump has with both the political landscape of America – and reality. It’s only a matter of time before Trump lashes out at this poll for promulgating “fake” news. Did I mention that this is a Fox News poll?

WHIPLASH: Trump Flips On Poll Because It Said Something Nice About Him

Trying to keep up with Donald Trump’s lies, insults, and hypocrisies is a full time job. His talent for deception and self-flagellation often exceeds the ability of honest observers to stay current. He’s off onto new falsehoods while analysts are still assembling the proof debunking his last three.

Donald Trump

Monday evening Trump fired off another tweet that makes one’s head spin. He sought to celebrate the allegedly positive position of the Republican Party:

First of all, this is the same Donald Trump who doesn’t believe in polls. Especially those conducted by the “fake news” media. He generally dismisses them as “rigged.” Unless, of course, they say something nice about him. That’s the case with this new poll by NBC and the Wall Street Journal. But before we we get into the substance of the poll, here is what Trump had to say about these specific pollsters in the past:

Nevertheless, the President now thinks these pollsters are the epitome of virtue and respectability. Consequently, he can cite them with pride. However, he may have wanted to look past the single data point that some aide probably passed to him in a crayon scribbled note.

The questions in the poll that likely grabbed The Donald’s attention were related to the respondents views about the Republican and Democratic parties. While there was a slight advantage for the GOP, it was hardly anything to brag about:

  • On approval or disapproval of the Republicans in congress, the survey says: Approve 32 percent, disapprove 60 percent.
  • On approval or disapproval of the Democrats in congress, the survey says: Approve 31 percent, disapprove 58 percent.

So the GOP is approved by one percent more than the Democrats. But they are also disapproved by two percent more. And everyone is underwater. Then there’s this:

  • On having a positive or negative opinion of Republicans, the survey says: Positive 35 percent, negative 43 percent.
  • On having a positive or negative opinion of Democrats, the survey says: Positive 30 percent, negative 46 percent.

The GOP has a bit more of an edge in this contest, but still nothing to write home about and still more negative than positive. Still, this is what Trump thought was significant enough that his Twitter followers needed an alert. He is apparently jazzed that he holds a tiny lead that is within the margin of error. And, in any case, it still reveals that he’s hated pretty much across the board.

Finally, some of the other questions in the poll were not even mentioned by Trump. That’s probably because they show him profoundly behind on every one:

  • On Trump’s job approval rating, the survey says: approve 44 percent, disapprove 48 percent.
  • On Trump’s personal rating, the survey says: positive 41 percent, negative 47 percent.
  • On who should take the lead in setting policy, the survey says: Democrats 37 percent, Trump 33 percent, Republicans 19 percent.
  • On whether Congress should investigate Trump’s connections to Russia, the survey says: Yes 53 percent, No 25 percent.
  • On whether Congress should investigate Russia’s interference with the election, the survey says: Yes 54 percent, No 29 percent.

So perhaps we should thank Trump for bringing this poll to our attention. It reveals the depths to which he has sunk in the few long weeks he’s been in office. No doubt his glassy-eyed disciples won’t bother to click on the poll or review its findings in detail. But the results will be obvious to the rest of the nation and, hopefully, the media, or as Trump calls them, the “enemy of the American people”

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

LOLOL: Poll Shows Majority Of Voters Trust ‘Fake News’ Media More Than ‘Lyin’ Donald Trump

It’s going to take a long time for the American presidency to recover from Donald Trump. In one interminably long month he has already brought both failure and shame to the nation. And the nation has noticed. Trump is suffering the worst approval ratings of any president at this point in over half a century. Quinnipiac University’s survey shows that a majority of 55 percent of voters have a negative opinion of him. Only 38 percent view him positively. And those numbers are down from previous polls. It’s a downward spiral.

Donald Trump

However, there are other numbers in this poll that are likely to bother The Donald even more. His notoriously thin skin will crawl when he learns that he’s held in lower esteem than his worst enemy. The “fake news” media. To be fair, Trump recently tweeted that the media “is not my enemy. It is the enemy of the American People!” Although his administration has characterized the media as the “opposition party.”

The Quinnipiac poll asked “Who do you trust more to tell you the truth about important issues: President Trump or the news media?” Voters chose the media by a margin of 52 percent to 37 percent. Not surprisingly, Republicans had a contrary view. They overwhelmingly chose Trump (78/13). However, both Democrats (86/7) and Independents (50/38) chose the media. Apparently Trump’s smear campaign isn’t working.

Additionally, The poll found that 61 percent of respondents disapprove of the way Trump talks about the media. And when asked “How important is it to you that the news media holds public officials accountable,” 72 percent said “very/somewhat” important. Once again there was a partisan divide. Democrats (90 percent) and Independents (75 percent) favor accountability. While only 44 percent of Republicans do. So Republicans are actually comfortable with letting Trump get away with questionable, and even criminal behavior.

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

To be sure, the media has its share of problems. It often can’t tell the difference between “balance” and providing a platform for liars. It’s more interested in ratings and revenue than its core mission of informing the public. The corporations that control most of it wield too much influence and provide too little diversity. That said, there is still something unsettling about Trump’s cultishly devoted followers. Whatever one thinks about the media, it is a safer source of information than an emotionally stunted, billionaire, misogynistic, bigot who’s lived an ivory tower life of entitlement and privilege.

Surprising Fox News Poll On Whether To Investigate Trump’s Contacts With Russia

Donald Trump has been desperately deploying weapons of mass distraction aimed at diverting attention from his mounting failures. His goal is to keep the public and the press occupied with fictional stories of terrorism in Sweden and allegations of fake news. Meanwhile, his national security team is falling apart, his immigration initiative was ruled unconstitutional, and controversy surrounds his cabinet appointees.

The most troubling scandal enveloping Trump’s nascent administration concerns his curious connections to Russia and Vladimir Putin. New incriminating evidence of collusion continues to seep out every day. His disgraced former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn, was discovered to have held talks with Russian agents during the campaign. That led to his dismissal by the President. But it still isn’t known what Trump and his White House staff knew during and after those talks.

Trump’s response to these inquiries is that it’s all “fake news” meant to harm his presidency. He even went so far as to accuse the media of being the “enemy of the American people.” But the American people may have a different opinion.

Donald Trump

A new poll was just posted on the Fox News community website, Fox Nation, on this subject. It asks “Do you think there should be a deeper investigation into Trump administration contacts with Russian officials?” The response as of this writing might not be what the editors at Fox were expecting. An overwhelming majority (74%) say that “Yes,” there should be such an investigation. In fact, it’s 3-to-1 in favor of a deeper probe. See the current results of the poll here, and cast your own vote.

While this is not a scientific poll, it’s an online survey of the most right-wing, true-believers in the Fox News universe. Even if some lefty trolls sneaked in to tilt the results, it’s unlikely that they could or would have done so in such huge numbers. The total number of respondents at this time is over 60,000. That’s a significant chunk of opinions, and we have to assume that most of them are Fox’s audience.

What this tells us is that there is substantial skepticism about Trump’s dealings with Russia. Even conservatives are anxious about his relationship with a hostile foreign power. They want to know if their president is a traitor. Trump has been unusually tight-lipped about these matters. He still refuses to release his tax returns, which could show a financial connection. And what he has said often contradicts prior statements. He literally has said that he has spoken and worked with Putin. But he also insisted that he has nothing to do with him or Russia.

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

These contradictions, and efforts to suppress information, are probably why so many Fox News patrons want to know more. They can’t trust him any more than the Democrats can. And while Trump will try to dance around these issues, he can’t keep dancing indefinitely. Like Richard Nixon, the truth will come out in its own time, and his dodgy behavior will only affirm his guilt. If he were smart he would heed the results of this poll among his most loyal supporters. Of course, if he were smart we wouldn’t be discussing this at all. Sad.

POLL: A Majority Of Americans Would Dump Trump For Obama

Two weeks into Donald Trump’s presidency and things continue to go south. And no, that’s not a reference to his disastrous screw-ups with Mexico. As obsessed with ratings as our reality TV president is, Trump is floundering bigly in the eyes of the nation.

Obama trump

A new poll by Public Policy Polling asked “Who would you rather was President: Barack Obama or Donald Trump?” The response was an overwhelming repudiation of Trump who received only 43 percent. Obama was favored by a majority of 52 percent.

Knowing Trump as we do, that’s going to gnaw at him intensely. But that’s only the beginning. On almost every other question in the poll, Trump fared poorly:

With regard to his executive order on immigration, 65 percent are opposed to banning Muslims. When phrased as barring people from specified countries, he still lost 53 percent of voters. He even lost lost on style with 55 percent saying his executive order was poorly executed.

On other issues, only 19 percent of voters see Stephen Bannon favorably. The same percentage think he should be on the National Security Council. And while 48 percent of Trump voters believe the conspiracy theory that airport protesters were paid by George Soros, only 26 percent of all voters buy Trump’s “alternative fact” that millions of people voted illegally.

Furthermore, 54 percent oppose building his border wall if American taxpayers have to front the cost for it. Only 37 percent of voters support the 20 percent tax on items imported to the US from Mexico. And a plurality of 46 percent now say they support ObamaCare, compared to just 41 percent who are opposed.

Perhaps the most painful results in this poll relate to the public’s impression of the media. In particular, some outlets that Trump has gone out of his way to disparage. According to PPP:

  • By a 52/41 spread voters say the Washington Post has more credibility than Trump.
  • By a 51/42 spread voters say the New York Times has more credibility than Trump.
  • By a 50/42 spread voters say CNN has more credibility than Trump.

Trump Media chart

For the record, that’s the “lying” Washington Post, the “failing” New York Times, and “fake news” CNN. All of whom are enjoying the best subscription/ratings stats they’ve seen in years. So if this is what Trump meant when he said we would all get “sick and tired of winning” bring it on, Donnie.

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

ObamaCare More Popular Than Ever – Just As Trump And GOP Rush To Kill It

Since 2010, Republicans have been staunchly opposed to virtually any health insurance reform that actually helped those who needed it. They voted more than fifty times to repeal the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) during Obama’s presidency. Now that the GOP has one of their own moving into the White House, they are giddy with anticipation of achieving their goal.

ObamaCare

There’s just one problem. The Wall Street Journal and NBC News just released a survey that has bad news for the GOP:

“As Republicans get closer to repealing it, President Barack Obama’s federal health-care law — or Obamacare — has never been more popular, according to results from a new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.” […]

“50 percent of Americans say the law is working well (6 percent) or needs minor modifications to improve it (44 percent).”

The poll also notes that thirty-three percent of respondents think that ObamaCare could be improved with a major overhaul. However, only sixteen percent of the American people think that it should be eliminated entirely. What’s more, the public has very little faith in the Republican majority in Congress to produce anything to adequately replace ObamaCare:

“Just 26 percent of Americans have either a ‘great deal’ or ‘quite a bit of confidence’ that congressional Republicans will replace the law with something better, while a combined 50 percent say they have either ‘very little’ or no confidence with the GOP here.”

In light of that, Trump’s slumping appeal to the nation registers even more prominently. He is by far the least popular president-elect in modern history with a mere forty percent favorability. Compare that with the last three presidents just prior to inauguration: Obama (84%), Bush (61%), Clinton (67%). And this is at a time when a newly elected leader enjoys a “honeymoon” period. It appears the American people are more in the mood for a quickie divorce. And true to form, Trump blames that on “rigged” polls.

For the record, the polls were actually remarkably accurate. They predicated that Hillary Clinton was favored by two to three percent in the days before the election. And that is precisely her margin of victory in the popular vote.

The people’s opposition to a repeal of ObamaCare has a factual foundation that Republicans strive to suppress. A Congressional Budget Office analysis of repeal found that up to 32 million people would lose their health coverage. They also found that premiums would skyrocket by up to fifty percent more than current rates. Also troubling is their finding that insurance providers would bail out of the market in droves. In Fact, they project that half of the nation would live in areas with no individual insurers at all. And that would rise to three-quarters by 2026.

Perhaps that’s why Republicans passed a bill to prohibit the CBO from scoring their ObamaCare repeal efforts. It’s a tactic designed to insure that people remain in the dark when their representatives are screwing them over. If they truly believed in the benefits of a repeal, they wouldn’t be afraid to let people know how it will affect them.

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

So Republicans are attempting to undo a popular healthcare bill, whose repeal will raise costs for both citizens and government. And they’re doing it behind a veil of self-imposed secrecy, at the behest of a historically reviled new president. Sounds like business as usual for the contemporary Tea Party infused, Ayn Rand inspired, Trump led Republican Party.

You Are Not Alone: New Poll Reveals America’s Deep Disapproval Of Donald Trump

With only one week remaining until Donald Trump’s inauguration, the mood of the American people has descended into an unprecedented funk. Trump has succeeded in making history as the most disliked President-Elect on record. And at a time when new presidents enjoy a honeymoon period, Americans seem more inclined to seek a divorce.

Lawrence O'Donnell MSNBC

On Thursday’s “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell,” the MSNBC host revealed the results of a brand new Quinnipiac Poll. Suffice to say that Trump will not be retweeting it, except to call everyone involved losers and liars. The poll shows how deeply dissatisfied the nation is with The Donald. In virtually every question posed by the pollsters Trump was seriously underwater. For instance:

  • On Trump’s cabinet nominees: Disapprove: 40%, Approve 30%.
  • On AG nominee Jeff Sessions: Disapprove: 34%, Approve 29%.
  • On Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson: Disapprove: 35%, Approve 23%.
  • On confidence that Trump will make things better: Not very/At all: 53%, Very/Somewhat: 44%.
  • On whether Trump will unite or divide the country: Divide: 54%, Unite: 40%.
  • Can you relate to Trump: No: 68% (including 35% of Republicans), Yes: 30%.
  • Is Trump honest: No: 53%, Yes: 39%.
  • On handling PEOTUS responsibilities: Disapprove:51%, Approve:37%.
  • On Trump’s job approval: Unfavorable: 51%, Favorable: 37%. A decline since the election.
  • On keeping his personal Twitter account: No: 64%, Yes: 32%.
  • On whether Trump will be a better president than Obama: Worse: 45%, Better 34%.
  • On what kind of president Trump will be: Bad/Not so good: 52%, Good/Great: 42%.

In every instance Trump not only fared poorly, he underperformed his election results. And as we know, he lost the popular vote by a historic margin of nearly three million votes. By comparison, the poll asked about President Obama’s job approval which stands at 55% favorable and 39% unfavorable. That’s a seven year high for Obama in this poll.

This poll makes clear that Trump has utterly failed to coalesce the country around his agenda of division and hate. His preliminary steps as PEOTUS have only further alienated the public. Rather than draining the swamp, Trump is stocking it with alligators from Goldman Sachs, celebrities from Fox News, and arch-conservatives from congress and business. And news about his unsavory associations with Russia aren’t helping either.

The conclusion drawn by O’Donnell is that “You are not alone.” Americans who have been grieving for their country and the state of its democracy are in the majority. Trump’s administration will begin without any hint of a mandate. Consequently, there is opportunity for the resistance to obstruct his agenda. But for that to happen, people need to be motivated, informed, and active. For more on that see the Indivisible Guide.

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

New Poll Reveals The Eight CRAZIEST Things Trump Voters Actually Believe

The nastiness and ignorance that epitomized the campaign of Donald Trump has proven to be stubbornly enduring. Now, as 2016 wraps up, the effect it had on his followers is brought into focus by the results of a new poll. The Economist/YouGov survey (pdf) addressed many of the pressing issues that face the nation. It’s a revealing exploration into the mindset of the electorate. However, the most fascinating (and frightful) revelations are those relating to Trump voters.

Donald Trump Voter

Below are some of the more worrisome responses. Let’s start off with what ought to be the most clear cut inquiry by the pollsters:

Is the country better off now than it was eight years ago?

Most Americans recall that eight years ago the nation was descending into an economic abyss. The stock market dropped 46 percent. Unemployment shot up to 10.1 percent. Home foreclosures hit record figures. And total household wealth declined by more than $19 trillion.

Yet somehow a whopping 60 percent of Trump voters responded to this question saying that the country was better off eight years ago than today. Another 19 percent say there is no difference. That’s after stocks climbed back from about 7,000 to nearly 20,000. And unemployment dropped to 4.9 percent. The auto industry that was on the brink of collapse is reporting record profits. And the delusions of the Trumpsters are unique to their breed. Only 21 percent of Democrats thought 2009 was a better year.

Do you think that the proportion of persons without insurance has increased or decreased over the past five years?

This is another question where the answer is an unambiguous fact. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare), the rate of the uninsured dropped to its lowest levels in history. It now stands at about 10 percent as more than 20 million people got insurance through ObamaCare.

Nevertheless, only 26 percent of Trump voters correctly said that persons without insurance decreased. And once again, Democrats demonstrated greater knowledge with 49 percent answering correctly.

On the subject of climate change do you think: (A) The world’s climate is changing as a result of human activity; (B) The world’s climate is changing but NOT because of human activity; (C) The world’s climate is NOT changing.

While conservatives fiercely deny reality on this question, 97 percent of scientists who study climate agree that “A” is the correct answer.

That doesn’t stop Trump voters from dismissing the science. Only 36 percent of them chose “A” as their answer. That compares to 79 percent of Democrats doing so.

Did Saddam Hussein have weapons of mass destruction before the invasion of Iraq in 2003 that the U.S. never found?

Many people may have forgotten that prior to Bush’s invasion of Iraq there was an international team of nuclear experts investigating and monitoring Iraq. They never found any trace of WMDs. Neither were any found after the invasion.

Of course Trump voters are not constrained by facts. Consequently, 68 percent of them said that it was definitely/probably true that Saddam had WMDs. By contrast, the definitely/probably true respondents among Democrats were only 10 and 32 percent respectively.

Was President Obama born in Kenya?

Why is this still a question? Even Trump stated in a press conference that he now believes that Obama was born in the U.S., period.

Still, Trump’s loyal followers are unmoved. A majority of 52 percent continue to say that Obama is definitely/probably a native Kenyan. Democrats aren’t perfect on this question, yet they’re still far better informed than the Trumpsters. Their definitely/probably born in Kenya numbers are only 7 and 13 percent.

Did Russia hack the email of Democrats in order to increase the chance that Donald Trump would win the Presidential election.

Seventeen American intelligence agencies, including the FBI and the CIA answer this question with a resounding “YES!” President Obama just slammed Russia with sanctions and diplomatic expulsions in retaliation for their interference in our democracy.

However, Trump voters are as defensive about Vladimir Putin as Trump himself. Eighty percent say the charges against Russia are definitely/probably NOT true. And by now you won’t be surprised to learn that the same figures for Democrats are a measly 9/16 percent respectively.

Were millions of illegal votes cast in the election?

This question was motivated by Trump’s tweeted assertion that he would have won the popular vote but for millions of illegal votes cast for Clinton. He never bothered to provide and documentation for his claim. And every expert that reviewed it found it to be false or unsupported by any facts.

OK, guest what? Sixty-two percent of Trump voters say the claim is definitely/probably true. Sixty-four of Democrats say the opposite.

Did Leaked email from Hillary Clinton’s campaign contain code words for pedophilia, human trafficking and satanic ritual abuse – what some people refer to as ’Pizzagate’?

This was one of the more prominent examples of fake news that made the headlines in the past few weeks. It was never given credibility by any legitimate news source. It simply spread like a virus via Facebook and Twitter infecting the dimwitted, right-wing cult fetishists. Eventually, it led to a near tragedy as one of the believers showed up at the pizzeria with an assault weapon.

And yet, 46 percent of Trump voters said that this ludicrous fiction was definitely/probably true. That compared to 76 percent of Democrats saying, essentially, “WTF?”

In conclusion:

It is incomprehensible that so many Americans can be so plainly and dangerously ill-informed. It doesn’t bode well for 2017 and beyond as the Trump administration begins to put its imprimatur on the country. But this epidemic of ignorance was not accidental. It was a deliberate act of disinformation by Trump and the Republican Party. And the media bears its share of responsibility for putting ratings and profit before journalistic ethics.

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

The only hope is for those who have not been deceived to relentlessly correct the record. They need to use facts, and reason, and shame, if necessary, to distribute the truth. It’s a difficult task to pitch reality to weak-willed, faith-based, zealots for whom facts hold no appeal. But failing to try is a far worse alternative. Be strong. Be persistent. Resist!