Bizarro World: Now The Republican Candidates Are Blasting Fox News More Than Democrats

One of the most enduring and annoying characteristics of the Fox News personality is that they are quick to take offense at any criticism and express their inner pain whenever they feel the least bit insulted. They have a defense mechanism that is on a hair trigger. If you have a legitimate complaint about the network you can expect them to fire back with ferocity.

Barack Obama Fox News

When Jon Stewart was on The Daily Show, Fox News regularly went into hysterics over his comic swipes at them. Never mind that his barbs were often aimed at Democrats and liberals as well, the ones targeting Fox brought out their full armory of wrath. And if President Obama dares to make a perfectly reasonable observation that Fox News has been biased against him, Fox reacts as if they were pierced with a presidential harpoon. They cry like babies every time Obama knocks them, even if it’s just in passing and in concert with a knock on the left.

However, they have yet to show the same indignation when their comrades on the right throw mud at the network. They seem to have a special store of umbrage that’s reserved only for Democrats who hurt their tender feelings.

For several months now Donald Trump has been wailing at Fox News for being boring, dopey, dishonest, unfair fools and clowns. He has directed his insults specifically toward featured Foxies like Bill O’Reilly, Charles Krauthammer, George Will, Karl Rove, and especially Megyn Kelly. He has sabotaged their debates by refusing to participate and has even advocated boycotting the network.

Now Ted Cruz is also slamming Fox News. In a press conference last week he complained that Fox has been unfair to him as it obsesses over Trump. He actually has a point. Fox has given Trump far more air time than any candidate of either party. And they have also given Trump more airtime than any other network has given him. Still, it generally doesn’t matter to Fox if the incoming criticism is true or not. They usually fire back with everything they’ve got.

So we now find ourselves in the odd position of seeing the top Republican candidates for president both bashing Fox News, the top media mouthpiece for Republicans. You know you have really crossed over into weird territory when right-wing politicians are the most prominent protesters of a media platform that has paved the way for their candidacies. Where will this leave Fox after the election?

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

What’s peculiar is that Fox has not been returning fire at the Republican candidates. With the exception of one response to Trump’s “sick obsession” with Megyn Kelly, the GOP offenders are being given a pass to hammer away at Fox. For a network that is notorious for brutal and rapid responses to critics, this can only be seen as a gift to the GOP. Liberal critics like Stewart or Bernie Sanders or Rachel Maddow had better take cover before delivering uncomplimentary comments. And President Obama should prepare for a nuclear blast. Fox is all for free speech as long as it doesn’t contain any criticism of their blatantly dishonest propaganda. Unless that criticism is coming from their ideological pals.

Rush Limbaugh Warns Of “A Nuclear Explosion” If Donald Trump Is Denied Nomination

Conservative pundits on TV and radio have proven to be painfully bad at punditry. Their predictions are notoriously distant from the reality that eventually unfolds. Just think about all of the things that were supposed to either destroy America, or turn it into a commie hellhole, if Barack Obama was elected (or reelected), that never came to pass. But there is one thing at which they are quite good: Scaring the bejeebus out of the wingnut faithful.

Rush Limbaugh

So it is unsurprising that the monster-mouth of the right, Rush Limbaugh, is unleashing alarms over the prospect of the Republicans being thrust into a contested convention. The threat, as imagined by Limbaugh, is that disappointed Trump supporters will freak out if their messiah is not crowned by an obedient assembly of delegates. Limbaugh speculates about a scenario wherein Ted Cruz manages to maneuver the delegate vote to a second or third ballot and then prevail over Trump. In which case, Limbaugh warns

“If that ever happens, we are gonna see a nuclear explosion like you’ve never seen before. […] Holy smokes! The blowback that will happen then, the backlash? That will be the end of the Republican Party. […] It might make the Watts and Rodney King riots look like Romper Room when it was all over.”

This isn’t the first time that Limbaugh has presaged the end of the Republican Party. Two months before President Obama was reelected in 2012 Limbaugh said that “If Obama wins let me tell you what it’s the end of…the Republican Party.” Sadly, this was just another of the hundreds of times he’s been wrong. And during the same rant he was equally wrong when he said that…

“If Obama’s re-elected, it will happen. There’s no IF about this. And it’s gonna be ugly. It’s gonna be gut-wrenching, but it will happen. The country’s economy is going to collapse if Obama is re-elected.”

At some point you have to wonder if he is ever embarrassed by his perpetual idiocy. But back to the main point, this new spiel is just the latest threat of violence projected for the Republican National Convention coming up in Cleveland in July. Trump himself predicted riots if he arrived at the convention with more delegates than his opponents, but short of a majority, and was beaten out of the nomination by a better organized candidate. His stooge, Roger Stone, publicly declared that he would be distributing the names and hotel room numbers of delegates that didn’t fall in line behind Trump.

Limbaugh’s warning came with a caveat that if Cruz or Kasich or anyone else rose to assume the nomination it would not be due to, as Trump whines, a rigged system or someone stealing the election:

“It’s not because anything’s illegal. Everybody’s taking advantage of the rules. [but] The words would not be there to explain to people what happened […] and people wouldn’t put up with it.”

So even Limbaugh accepts that it is within the rules to lobby for delegate support and make a case to nominate someone other than the top delegate winner. But at the same time he reveals his opinion that his fellow Republicans are unable to understand the process and that they are too dense for it to be explained to them, leading to them resorting to mayhem.

What’s funny about this is that Limbaugh is so upset by the possibility of riots ensuing at the GOP convention. However, he had a completely different view a few years ago when he openly advocated for violence at the Democratic convention in Denver in 2008 in a tirade he titled Screw the World! Riot in Denver! he said that his dream was for…

“…a replay of Chicago 1968, with burning cars, protests, fires, literal riots, and all of that.”

So while Limbaugh had such fervent hopes for violence that never materialized (or was even plausible) at a Democratic convention, he is now fraught with anxiety about the potential for violence at a Republican convention. There’s a kind of karmic justice in that. It is also typical of right-wingers who so often use projection to disparage their perceived enemies, but later find themselves the victims of their own evil yearnings.

More Proof That Donald Trump Thinks (Correctly) That His Followers Are Imbeciles

A few months ago News Corpse published an article illustrating the disrespect that Donald Trump has for his legions of dimwitted followers. His open contempt for the little people that flock to his hate-filled revival meetings was expressed in a Q&A with a supporter who wanted to know how Trump would handle terrorism. Trump responded that “You don’t want to hear how I’d handle it.” Of course they don’t. They’re too dumb to understand a substantive answer, even if Trump were smart enough to give one.

Donald Trump

This morning Trump demonstrated how he is changing his image to be more “presidential” by railing against John Kasich for the disgusting way he eats pancakes. That’s the depth of the discourse on issues that Trump is capable of, and it perfectly reflects the intellectual capacity of his audience. And Trump knows it. That’s why he said the following this weekend:

“You know, being presidential is easy — much easier than what I have to do. Here, I have to rant and rave. I have to keep you people going. Otherwise you’re going to fall asleep on me, right?”

Right! Trump is acknowledging that his supporters are low attention span blockheads who can’t concentrate unless they are being subjected to the neanderthal ranting and raving that is the hallmark of a Trump rally. But what’s truly pathetic is that they cheer him even while he’s insulting them as shallow peons who require vulgar stimulation to remain awake. It’s a perverse sort of political masochism that excites Trump’s submissives as well as the dominant, dictatorial tendencies of Trump.

For the record, if it were easy for Trump to be presidential he would not have spent the last ten months insulting women, African-Americans, Muslims, and his GOP colleagues. He would not have brazenly lied more than any candidate in modern history (see the Trump Bullshitopedia). And he would not have repeatedly embarrassed himself by acting like a buffoon and affirming the most repulsive behavior of the past few decades, including that he wants to bang his daughter.

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

The fact that an elitist, narcissistic, billionaire, born into wealth and privilege, inspires such demented reverence on the part of his lowbrow, glassy-eyed disciples is a troubling sign for the Republican Party. The frightening thing is that the rest of the Republican field is jockeying to attract these same cretins. So regardless of what happens to Trump, the GOP constituency will remain infected by his diseased mindset and the party regulars will have adopted his crackpot platform. That’s a stain that will be hard to wash away.

Republicans Are Frantically Trying To Force Themselves To Believe Donald Trump’s Lies

What’s happening today in the Republican primary for the GOP nomination for president is unprecedented. The front-runner in the race is purposefully lying about himself and admitting that he is lying. When Donald Trump says that “At some point, I’m going to be so presidential that you people will be so bored,” he is in effect confessing that everything he has been doing up until that point has been a charade.

Dogshit Donald Trump

This isn’t the first time that Trump has openly revealed the dishonesty of his campaign tactics. He was asked by Fox News in February when he would start to act more presidential and he answered “Pretty soon.” Of course, that answer was evidence that he was not presidential at the time, but that his “act” would change at some unspecified time in the future. So as soon as he thinks he’s ready to stop acting like a crass and boorish buffoon he’ll suddenly transform into a respectable diplomat, something he has never been in decades of a very public life.

To expand on his overt phoniness, Trump also told an NBC town hall that “I did some things, and I’ve said some things in fun. I’ve said it as an entertainer.” He apparently has no reluctance to exposing himself as character in his own reality show. And his new campaign chief, Paul Manafort, backed him up saying that “The part that he’s been playing is now evolving.”

So it’s obvious, and admitted, that Trump is merely playing a part at his rancorous rallies filled with rancid insults, undisguised threats, crybaby whining, and childish blathering. And now he expects everyone to believe that he will simply change into a dignified leader who won’t embarrass the nation on the world stage. That’s a lot to ask. But sadly, many in the media are already falling for it.

In a addition to the press, who have forthrightly stated that ratings are more important than the welfare of the country, the Republican Party is trying to gather the nerve to pretend that they can tolerate a Trump candidacy. While some factions of the GOP are stumbling over themselves to resist him (i.e. the #NeverTrump movement), the remainder are engaging in a form of self-delusion to get to a point where they don’t vomit at the sound his name.

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

They realize that July is rapidly approaching and the prospect of Trump emerging from their convention with the nomination is not as preposterous as it once seemed to be. Now they have to decide whether it would be crazier to step away from a candidate that has sunk to lower depths in favorability than any candidate in history, or to fall in line behind him and suffer record losses. They also have to decide if they want to be associated with a flaming bigot who revels in his ignorance of both domestic and foreign affairs.

That might seem like an easy question for most people, but for Republicans they are struggling with it. The choice between integrity and patriotism over a racist wannabe dictator is not so simple for them. And if you were going to place any bets, I would suggest that you lean toward the party standing behind Trump because, when all is said and done, he isn’t so different than the rest of them. And he certainly isn’t very different from the right-wing constituency that is propping Trump up with victories from Montgomery to Manhattan.

That’s A Wrap: Hollywood’s Closet Conservatives Close Their Covert Club

For those who haven’t heard of it, the Friends of Abe (FoA) is an exclusive society of right-wing celebrities who pretend to be secret so as to protect themselves from imaginary discrimination in Hollywood. Never mind that many of them make public appearances on behalf of the supposedly secret group and with names like Kelsey Grammer, Tom Selleck, Bruce Willis, and Clint Eastwood, they aren’t exactly nobodies who can’t find work in movies and TV.

Friends of Abe

Now it appears that the FoA is being disbanded. A report by the Guardian reveals that the organization has decided to dispense with their activities just as the 2016 election season is heading into the homestretch. The networking group will cease to host regular gatherings where they can complain about their careers, bitch about high taxes on rich folks like themselves, fret about ISIS coming after them, hate on immigrants, whine that more Americans have access to health care than ever before, and blame President Obama for those, and every other, catastrophe they think is destroying America. The announcement was made in an email to members that said in part…

“Effective immediately, we are going to begin to wind down the 501 c3 organization, bring the Sustaining Membership dues to an end, and do away with the costly infrastructure and the abespal.com website. Today, because we have been successful in creating a community that extends far beyond our events, people just don’t feel as much of a need to show up for every speaker or bar night, and fewer people pay the dues that help us maintain that large infrastructure.”

That’s some pretty powerful spin. Did you catch it? They are saying that due to their unparalleled success nobody is paying any dues or showing up for their events. And to think, I used to believe that declining revenue and attendance were signs of failure. Shows you how much I know.

As it turns out, the FoA is suffering from the same sort of internal rancor that is devouring the Republican Party from the inside, and for the same reason: Donald Trump. As the Guardian notes, “infighting over Donald Trump’s candidacy, among other factors, had drained commitment.” It goes on to expose an environment described by one the founders as a “civil war in slow motion,” and laments broken friendships and the loss of a sense of solidarity.

Trump basks in the glory of being a wrecking ball on the right. He has splintered the GOP into factions including the #NeverTrump movement and the well-financed anti-Trump “Our Principles” Super PAC. Party regulars have likened the emergence of Trump to political suicide, or at least threatened to commit suicide themselves if he gets the nomination. As for the Storm-Trumpers, they cling so tightly to their messiah that they promise to wreak havoc at the RNC convention and abandon the GOP entirely if the crown is not passed to Trump as God intends.

Even Fox News has been run through the Trump meat grinder. He has bitterly castigated the network as being full of dopes, and dummies, and boring lightweights who can’t function because of their menstrual cycles. He has even called for a boycott of the network that he says is totally unfair to him, despite the fact that they have given him far more airtime than any other candidate. The same animosities that drove the break up of the FoA can be observed in the hallways of Fox News.

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

But don’t jump to conclusions yet. This announcement of defeat may be a ruse to throw everyone off the trail of the FoA’s true mission. They may just be pretending to break up so they can return to their former state of obscurity from which they can launch wingnut missiles at Democrats and other liberal foes in anonymity. Yesterday they posted a message on their Facebook page that cryptically presaged this announcement:

“Friends of Abe mentioned in the media again…sheesh, we’re becoming about as ‘secret’ as Mount Everest. I will concede that the author is correct, in that sides have certainly been drawn regarding Trump. But the organization will survive, even if, for the time being, fewer people are being let in.”

That sounds like a tactical retreat. Not that they would be any more effective as guerrilla-style activists fighting in the shadows. Having twice the impact of zero impact is still zero impact. We’ll know more shortly as the FoA Facebook page currently has a cover photo that says they will release an official statement on the Facebook page in the next twenty-fours. Maybe that statement will include an explanation for why an organization whose first rule is (borrowing from The Fight Club) “Never talk about Friends of Abe,” has a Facebook page to begin with.

Stupid Polling Tricks: New Yorkers Hate Donald Trump But He Thinks They Adore Him

The Republican Party must be ready to gnaw off its leg after ten months of Donald Trump stinking up the place. He has engaged in bitter battles with his GOP opponents and the Republican National Committee. He has assembled the worst record on honesty of any candidate in decades (see the Trump Bullshitopedia). And he’s done this while offending virtually every voter constituency in the nation. That may account for the public’s aversion to him as evidenced in this poll from Fox News (that’s right, Fox News). But, as if that weren’t enough to produce an enduring nausea, Trump is also dumb as fence post. And he’s making the most of it.

Donald Trump Stupid

Trump has shown that he has no grasp of the issues that face the country. He rarely responds to a question with anything resembling coherence, much less substance. What he does say is a third grade level simplification that would shame an actual third grader. And he is not only ignorant of policy matters, he doesn’t have the vaguest idea of how the political system works. He has spent most of the last week whining about a delegate process that has been known to every candidate for years.

This weekend Trump demonstrated again how shallow his understanding of campaign matters is. He gleefully tweeted about a poll that blared the headline: “BOOM! Trump Holds 66% Favorable Rating in New York – Leads Hillary Clinton by 19 Points in Empire State.”

Anyone who reads that tweet and thinks there is anything remotely associated with reality in it should not be allowed use pointy scissors. A cursory examination reveals it to be a complete farce. The polling organization is Liberty Opinion Research, a little known conservative operation with no discernable credentials. Its president is Nick Langworthy, who is also the chairman of the Erie County Republican Committee and has endorsed Trump for president.

Digging into the internals of the poll shows that the respondents were narrowly drawn to achieve a positive result for Trump. They are an exclusive lot that is 94% white, 61% conservative, and 48% of them are 66 years or older. So what you have is a bunch of old, right-wing, white guys expressing their devotion to an old, right-wing, white guy.

Trump seems to enjoy posting links to dubious polling that falsely heralds him as the second coming. Last February he linked to a ridiculous poll that claimed that he “leads big with Latinos.” And back in December he did the same thing with a laughable survey that said that “minorities are lining up behind” him. I guess when you appeal to a dimwitted throng of cult worshipers you can say anything.

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

For the record, Clinton is beating Trump by 21.2% in the RealClear Politics average of polls for New York. So the preferences of the people of New York are not in doubt. It isn’t even close. But Trump is dumb enough to believe that the voters in his home state adore him, when they obviously do not. And his glassy-eyed disciples will also cling to his tweet as if it were the gospel truth. It would comical if it weren’t so pathetically sad.

Donald Trump: The Aspiring Whiner In Chief

If there is one thing that Donald Trump has proven this election year, it’s that there is a thriving market in the Republican Party for bigotry, ignorant bluster, and overt hostility. What may not have been as predictable is the surging demand for childish tantrums and self-indulgent carping.

Donald Trump GOP

Last week Ted Cruz outmaneuvered Trump in Colorado to win win all of the state’s delegates. In response Trump has unleashed a torrent of bile aimed at both Cruz and the Republican Party. He is spewing bitter and harshly worded complaints that the system is “corrupt” and “rigged” and that delegates are being “stolen” from him. His new campaign advisor, Paul Manafort, accused Cruz of using “Gestapo” tactics Hyperbole aside, this is just another example of Trump not knowing the rules or being willing to play by them. Rules don’t apply to Trump.

The fact is that Cruz just whipped Trump’s butt. Trump never showed up in Colorado. He just sent some pamphlets and had supporters selling Trump-branded merchandise. However, Cruz shouldn’t get a swelled a head. Besting the Trump family is apparently a pretty simple task. It was just reported that two of his kids, Ivanka and Eric, cannot vote for him in the New York primary because they neglected to register as Republicans before the deadline. This is the easy part, people.

So Trump has been hitting the campaign trail and with blistering condemnations of the delegate selection process. He is whining about delegate loses in Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, and Tennessee, to name just a few. He has even threatened to file lawsuits to in Georgia and Tennessee to secure delegates that he is convinced belong to him. He thinks that because he has “millions of votes” that he is entitled to all of the delegates, regardless of what the rules are. In fact. Trump actually has a higher percentage of delegates than the percentage of votes he has received. So maybe he should release those extra delegates.

Ironically, today he told Fox News contributor Kirsten Powers that “I don’t love to see leaders who sit back and cry.” Yet that’s pretty much all that Trump does. He cries about what he regards as mistreatment by the GOP when he’s too stupid to follow the rules. He cries when voters reject him and belittles them for not recognizing his awesomeness. He cries about how awful America is, literally calling it a hell hole. His entire campaign is crying over his assertion that American isn’t great anymore and that he is the only human being that can restore its greatness.

Virtually everything about Trump screams infantile. He calls his rivals liars and cheaters and pussies. He calls critics dummies and losers. Then he points fingers at others saying that they started it. He brags about his alleged (and unlikely) phallic endowment. He is a pathological liar (see the Trump Bullshitopedia). It’s just a matter of time before he rails against his enemies as poopyheads who smell funny. Worst of all, he is willing to resort to violence. He encourages it at his rallies and has threatened riots at the GOP convention in Cleveland if he is denied his right to the crown.

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

And now Trump is adding persistent whining whenever he doesn’t get his way. It’s behavior that is ugly and juvenile. And yet, there are dimwitted Republicans who are still willing to support a candidate that doesn’t seem to have matured past the third-grade level (literally with regard to his speeches). What does that say about the wingnuts and Tea Party deadenders that comprise the core of Trump’s following? It says they are satisfied with a candidate who has failed to articulate a single policy with any measure of intelligence; who aspires to tyranny; and whose narcissistic ego has blown up to unprecedented proportions. Here is a video simulation of Donald Trump at ten years old – or for that matter, yesterday.

The Fox News Audience Wants To Bomb An American City Because – MUSLIMS!

As the Republican primary campaign continues its march to their summer revival meeting (aka convention), the rising temperature of hostility threatens to leave the party in ashes. We have already seen Donald Trump warn that if he is denied the nomination that he considers his birthright there will be riots. Not to be outdone, Ted Cruz raised the specter of revolt if he is passed over.

Fox News

The lingering stench of violence that hovers over the GOP this election year is a constant reminder that the party that worships the Second Amendment is fully prepared to use force to achieve their ends, even against those who would otherwise be considered their ideological allies. So just imagine how they would treat those they regard as enemies.

Sadly, no imagination is required as the misanthropes of the right are not shy about revealing their barbaric side. A recent segment on Fox News was sufficient to draw out their inbred hatred toward fellow Americans that don’t happen to look like them. In this case it was a community in Michigan with a predominately Muslim population. An openly biased Fox correspondent, Pete Hegseth, visited the city of Hamtramck to interview the residents about how awful it is to live among heathens. But that isn’t the worst part of the story.

On the Fox News Facebook page that posted the video of the segment, commenters lived up to their reputation for bigotry and brutality. They went beyond merely insulting the peaceful citizens of Hamtramck to calling for this American city to be bombed and its people eradicated. For example…

  • “Soon we will find it necessary to start dropping bombs in towns like this.”
  • “Since Obama can’t seem to identifytargets before he sends our pilots out to drop bombs, maybe tey should practice on Hamtramck and the mosque they built in Maryland!”
  • “We need a radical militia in America to snuff these Islamic toe holds out.”
  • “So we know the coordinates to drop the next a-bomb. What’s the problem?”
  • “Put them all in the same place like that city and drop a big bomb on it.”
  • “I can’t believe we’re letting Obama get away with this. Soon it will be Obama’s folly. I see a day when we start rounding them up and forcing them out or killing them.”
  • “Drop a bomb. Be done with these barbaric savages. Disgusting.”
  • “Now we know where to drop the bomb first Detroit is already a shithole.”
  • “They spread like roaches, then the only way to get rid of the infestation is to bomb the area.”
  • “Blow the town up with a smart bomb , made to hurt the muslims only.”
  • “Kill all Muslims before they kill you they are not your friends.”

Remember, these comments are being directed at people who love America and condemn terrorism. The grotesque character (or lack thereof) of the Fox audience has been documented in detail in The Collected Hate Speech Of The Fox News Community. It is evidence of the breadth of animus that infects so much of the conservative movement for which Fox speaks. They are literally taking sides with ISIS and Al Qaeda, who also want to bomb American cities.

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

And it also explains why hostile demagogues like Trump can rise to become leaders in their party while advocating violence. Anyone who is surprised by the incidents at Trump rallies, or his hateful rhetoric that encourages it, is terminally naive. This is the modern Republican Party. And the eagerness of American bigots to bomb fellow citizens living peacefully in an American city is a sad indication of just how low these cretins have sunk.

Blackmailing Fox News: Does Donald Trump Have Dirt On Roger Ailes?

Ever since Donald Trump entered the Republican contest for the party’s nomination for president he has been a constant presence on Fox News. Studies of the distribution of airtime have shown that Trump’s allocation has far exceeded every other candidate. The estimated value of this gift to Trump’s candidacy is in excess of thirty million dollars through December 2016. The question is why has Fox been so generous to this one particular candidate?

Donald Trump Roger Ailes

The conventional wisdom response to this question would be that Trump is simply good business for Fox News (and pretty much every other network). He is a proven ratings draw, in the same manner as a high-speed police chase or a Kardashian wardrobe malfunction. Audiences are enrapt because of the possibility that at any time Trump might burst a blood vessel in his neck or slap an immigrant orphan. In addition to the financial incentive, Fox shares most of the political agenda articulated by Trump, even the batshit crazy stuff like Mexican border walls, dismantling NATO, and his latest absurdity that he would eliminate the national debt in eight years.

Now there is a new explanation for why the self-described “most powerful name in news” got rolled and began doling out huge portions of their valuable airtime to what otherwise might be considered a joke candidate. Gabriel Sherman, the National Affairs Editor for New York Magazine and the author of a biography of Fox CEO Roger Ailes (The Loudest Voice in the Room), just published a fascinating and in-depth story about the composition of Trump’s campaign team. But it also includes an account of how Fox Executive VP Brian Lewis got fired under mysterious circumstances (which News Corpse covered here). In the course of telling this story, Sherman revealed this startling bombshell:

“It was also thanks to some information he had gathered that Trump was able to do something that no other Republican has done before: take on Fox News. An odd bit of coincidence had given him a card to play against Fox founder Roger Ailes. In 2014, I published a biography of Ailes, which upset the famously paranoid executive. Several months before it landed in stores, Ailes fired his longtime PR adviser Brian Lewis, accusing him of being a source. During Lewis’s severance negotiations, Lewis hired Judd Burstein, a powerhouse litigator, and claimed he had ‘bombs’ that would destroy Ailes and Fox News. That’s when Trump got involved.

“‘When Roger was having problems, he didn’t call 97 people, he called me,’ Trump said. Burstein, it turned out, had worked for Trump briefly in the ’90s, and Ailes asked Trump to mediate. Trump ran the negotiations out of his office at Trump Tower. ‘Roger had lawyers, very expensive lawyers, and they couldn’t do anything. I solved the problem.’ Fox paid Lewis millions to go away quietly, and Trump, I’m told, learned everything Lewis had planned to leak. If Ailes ever truly went to war against Trump, Trump would have the arsenal to launch a retaliatory strike.”

If this is true, then Fox News is essentially paying off Trump, with millions of dollars of airtime, to buy his silence. Under these circumstances Fox should not be covering Trump at all. If Trump is blackmailing Fox with threats of dumping damaging information there is no telling what he might have demanded. He isn’t limited to free airtime. He could also insist on positive coverage from influential hosts like Bill O’Reilly. He could force the network to hit his opponents with dishonest smears. He could dictate the network’s narrative on the progress of the campaign, the battle for delegates, and even the reactions to his numerous controversial remarks.

One thing is certain: This would explain how Trump has gotten away with his brutal treatment of Fox News. 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.” And 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 the Fox’s parent corporation. I can’t say that I disagree with much of that, but then I’m not seeking the GOP nomination for anything.

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

This is behavior that only seems plausible if Trump somehow knows that he will not suffer any consequences for it. At the very least, Fox News needs to respond to these allegations. And if their response is anything less than an unambiguous denial (for which they would have to supply evidence), then they need to come clean by disclosing the blackmail bait themselves. Then they need to conduct a public review of their past coverage of Trump to provide an accounting of their time allotment and any possibility of reporting bias. What’s more, the other candidates, including those who dropped out, have a right to some answers on how they were covered and if Trump’s tactics adversely affected their campaigns. Will Fox act responsibility on this? Well, why should they start now since they haven’t for the last twenty years.

If Only: WSJ Says Obama Is Six Months Away From Destroying The Republican Party

The Wall Street Journal just published an editorial that might have been dismissed as an April Fool’s joke, except that it was published on March 30. It is the sort of delusional crackpottery to which conservatives resort when their denial overpowers what little common sense they have.

Obama Destroys GOP

The article by Dan Henninger, the paper’s Deputy Editorial Page Director and a Fox News contributor, is fretfully titled Obama’s Greatest Triumph: He is six months away from destroying both the Republican Party and Reagan’s legacy.” While the claim is one that stirs the promise of hope in every liberal, Henninger may be giving Obama more credit than he deserves. The truth is that the Republican Party may indeed be six months from destruction, but Obama has had little to do with it.

Henninger is employing the venerable rightist tactic of blaming Obama for anything that they deem undesirable. For instance, wingnuts on the right have blamed Obama for the bombing in Brussels, California’s drought, Ebola, and even Hurricane Katrina. He is blamed for high gas prices that hurt consumers, as well as for low gas prices that hurt oil companies. In the warped minds of conservatives there is no way that Obama can win.

And now the disintegration of the Republican Party is just another disaster caused by a president that the right believes is both an evil genius and a lazy incompetent. He’s working determinedly to destroy America while doing nothing but playing golf. The editorial begins with the premise that…

“Barack Obama will retire a happy man. He is now close to destroying his political enemies—the Republican Party, the American conservative movement and the public-policy legacy of Ronald Reagan.”

And how does Henninger arrive at this conclusion? By observing that the GOP has withered into a hollow shell of a party and that…

“With no party spokesman for conservatism, an ideological vacuum existed. Freelance operators filled it.”

The freelancers identified by Henninger are otherwise known as some of the leading figures of their party, including presidential candidates Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. Henninger doesn’t explain the dastardly scheme that Obama used to get Republicans to elevate these fruitcakes to their current status, but rest assured, it must have been as diabolical as it was brilliant. But that was only the beginning. Obama’s plots conspired to turn the Republican Party against itself, even utilizing reliably right-wing think tanks and media to do the dirty work.

“They also included a movement to purge and cleanse conservatism, led by groups such as Heritage Action and by talk radio hosts. Together they conjured an internal enemy—the Republican Establishment.”

Once again there is no explanation for how Obama managed to get the ultra-rightist Heritage Foundation, Rush Limbaugh, et al, to turn their fire at the so-called “Republican Establishment,” which in reality is no different than what is regarded as the Republican outsiders like the Tea Party. They are all of the same hive mind politically, and advocate for exactly the same agenda.

Nevertheless, Henninger’s proposition that the turmoil in the GOP was brought about by some wizardry on the part of Obama was made even more devious by the President’s ability to keep his fingerprints off of the plan. As Henninger describes it…

“With his Cheshire Cat grin, Barack Obama faded into the background and let the conservatives’ civil war rip. […] The anti-establishment offensive created a frenzy faction inside the Republican base. And of course, it produced Donald Trump.”

Now that is the ultimate praise from the conservative columnist. Taking credit for saddling Republicans with Donald Trump would be a feather in the cap of any Democrat. It would be like threading the Deathstar needle in an X-Wing Starfighter to blow it to smithereens. Obama must truly be a Jedi Master.

All kidding aside, the desperation in this editorial to indict Obama for crimes against the GOP is hilariously obtuse. Responsibility for the Republican Party’s destruction lies solely with GOP politicians, pundits, and voters, who encouraged the foolishness of the Tea Party malcontents to screech their unfocused and incoherent anger at anyone who sought to behave reasonably or to conduct the work of government. It wasn’t Obama who unseated the GOP House Majority Leader. And it wasn’t Democrats who primaried veteran Republican members of Congress. And any clear-eyed observer knows that Donald Trump was the inevitable consequence of their festering rage.

Henninger whines that the GOP’s “bizarre” response to the Obama administration produced a result wherein “the Republicans decided to destroy each other.” That’s true, but it wasn’t Obama who got them to become so bizarre. That’s an honor that they can only award to themselves. And now that most of them are horrified by the prospect of Donald Trump becoming their standard bearer, they are struggling to avoid accountability and to lay the blame at the feet of the President who has been the most consistent victim of their madness. But that is only more proof that they are still suffering from an acute case of denial. And there is no sign that a cure is on the horizon.

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

The Republican Party may very well be six months away from being destroyed. And if it is, the credit belongs to the party and the conservative media that has been deceiving their constituents for the past eight years (or more). At least RNC Chairman Reince Priebus was honest about it when he said that “Republicans don’t exist as a national political party if we do not win in 2016.” To which America is saying “You promise?”