Trump Caught Red-Handed Lying About Biden Using a Teleprompter

Catching Donald Trump in a bald-faced lie is about as difficult as bench pressing a pool noodle. Washington Post fact-checkers have already caught him telling more than 20,000 lies since his inauguration. However, there are times when his fabrications are so distant from reality that they require special attention, because they reveal the extreme lengths to which Trump will go in order to spread his political manure.

Donald Trump Angry

Early Tuesday there was just such a case. In Trump’s morning tweetstorm – that produced twenty-five tweets before noon – there was one post that declared triumphantly that Joe Biden was “caught red-handed using a teleprompter.” This is an allegation that the Trump camp has been unsuccessfully – and with blatant dishonesty – trying to peddle for months. It’s an ironic line of attack considering that Trump regularly uses a teleprompter, but still can’t speak coherently. He recently bragged about how the United States would soon land an astronaut on Nars.

Trump’s latest lame attempt to malign Biden came in the form of a retweet from Jason Miller, the senior advisor to Trump’s reelection campaign. Miller in turn was retweeting Eric Trump, whose superpower is being impervious to the shame of ignorance. What Eric posted was a video that he snatched from another Trump campaign shill that supposedly showed Biden reading answers to questions during a Telemundo interview. Eric’s comment accompanying the video was “Unreal!” Which, of course, it was. Here is the tweet posted by Miller and retweeted by Trump:

The reason Biden wasn’t “pretending” to look at the interviewer was that he was looking at a monitor from which he was taking questions from Telemundo viewers. CNN’s fact-checkers debunked the teleprompter fiction saying that…

“Biden was not using a teleprompter during the interview. Here’s what happened: Telemundo set up a screen, to Biden’s left, for viewers to ask Biden their own questions; Biden was looking to the left because he was addressing his answer directly to a woman who had asked him a question about deportations. Midway through the answer, the screen showing the woman went black, so Biden said, ‘I lost that line.’ Díaz-Balart responded that Biden could just talk with him on the subject.”

All of this was easily verifiable by simply watching the interview. But that’s too much like actual, honest journalism for anyone associated with Trump. So instead, they make up their own perverse version of reality and disseminate that to their dimwitted cult followers who are so cognitively challenged that they will believe anything, no matter how preposterous. These are the same Darwinian rejects who think that the coronavirus is a Democratic hoax.

Watching the Trump Klan go through these motions to disparage Biden as mentally unfit is becoming something of a joke. They are getting nowhere. In fact, in a recent poll by Fox News (yes, that Fox News) a majority of the American people said that it’s Trump who doesn’t have the mental soundness to serve. What’s more, Trump has been steadily trailing Biden in every national poll, as well as in most of the critical battleground states.

Trump’s vain determination to belittle Biden’s mental acuity is a strategy sprung from desperation. Trump knows he’s losing and is trying to claw his way out of the ditch he dug for himself. The problem is that these tactics are what got him there in the first place, and he’s only digging himself in deeper.

This will become all the more apparent during the first presidential debate next week. Trump has lowered the bar for Biden so much that Biden only has to show up and refrain from drooling. Meanwhile, Trump will exhibit his customary hostility, ignorance of facts, compulsion to lie, and tendency toward infantile outbursts. That’s not exactly a winning game plan.

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

Kayleigh McEnany’s Lame Attempt to Whitewash Trump’s Blame for 200,000 Deaths

This week the United States achieved another milestone under the “leadership” of Donald Trump. More than 200,000 Americans have died as a result of his negligence, incompetence, and deliberate malfeasance in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. Add to that the 6.7 million people who contracted the disease, many of whom will suffer permanent, debilitating disabilities.

Kayleigh McEnany, Donald Trump

This is unarguably a record of abject failure that translates into tragedy for millions of people. Yet somehow Trump gives himself a A+ for ranking near the bottom worldwide for managing this crisis. The only area that he concedes falling short is in public relations, for which he gives himself a D.

Trump deserves some credit for recognizing how terrible his White House communications operations are. For the most part they have ignored the traditional duties of conveying important information to the American people, choosing instead to conduct itself as an arm of Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign. And he has repeatedly been at odds with the medical experts on his Coronavirus Task Force. No wonder the cases and fatalities stack up even as other countries are returning to relative normality.

At the helm of Trump’s communications team is his press Secretary, Kayleigh McEnany. She’s an accomplished liar who is ably filling the shoes of her weasley predecessors Sean Spicer, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and “alternative facts” spinner, Kellyanne Conway. As evidence of McEnany’s prowess for falsehoods, observe this response to a question from CNN’s Jim Acosta:

Acosta: The country has had over 200,000 deaths from coronavirus. What do you say to Americans who are outraged over this and blame this administration for so many lives lost in this country?
McEnany: Well, as you’ve heard several doctors on the task force note from this podium, we were looking at the prospect of two million people perishing from the coronavirus in this country. We grieve when even one life is lost, but the fact that we have come nowhere near that number is a testament to this president taking immediate action. After shutting down travel from China, when the other party, Democrats were saying that was xenophobic; for shutting down travel for Europe; for developing landmark therapeutics that are working, like Remdesivir.

There’s a lot to unpack in that brief commentary. To begin with, we were never “looking at the prospect of two million people perishing.” That was a baseline estimate of fatalities if nothing were done at all to mitigate the spread of virus. While Trump didn’t do very much, many governors and mayors took independent actions to shut down hazardous activities and to promote safe practices such as social distancing and the wearing of facial masks, both of which Trump dismissed and even mocked. The two million fatality estimate was never intended to be a benchmark for success. Trump himself used smaller numbers, beginning with fifteen and rising with reported deaths to 60,000. It’s now more than three times that, and growing. That’s a testament to failure.

Furthermore, Trump never shut down travel from either China or Europe. His restrictions were full of exemptions and he applied them too late, after the virus was already spreading in the U.S. The criticism of his xenophobia was connected to his focus on China – even calling it the China virus – despite the fact that most of the cases in the U.S. were traceable to Europe. And finally, McEnany summed up Trump’s accomplishments by giving him credit for developing Remdesivir, a drug developed by Gilead Sciences in 2009.

It’s easy to see why Trump’s PR operations are held in such low repute, even by him. In the exchange above, McEnany never even answered Acosta’s question. But Trump’s own efforts aren’t helping. Just this weekend he made some ludicrous and blatantly false remarks about the coronavirus and it’s potential for transmission:

“Now we know [the coronavirus]. It affects elderly people, elderly people with heart problems and other problems. If they have other problems, that’s what it really affects. That’s it. In some states, thousands of people, nobody young below the age of eighteen, like nobody. They have a strong immune system. Who knows? Take your hat off to the young, cause they have a hell of an immune system. But it affects virtually nobody. It’s an amazing thing.”

You’ll recall that just last week Trump was heard on recordings by Bob Woodward for his book, RAGE, saying that COVID-19 affects “not just old…older. Young people too. Plenty of young people.” That was in addition to his admission that he knew from the start how deadly it was, but was playing it down.

200,000 are a lot of “nobodies.” But it was always Trump’s intention to trivialize the massive amount of suffering for which he is directly responsible. That explains the fallacies disseminated by his PR team. However, it isn’t because they performed poorly. In fact, it was probably the best performing agency in his administration. That’s because they were saying precisely what Trump wanted them to say.

McEnany and company were lying on Trump’s behalf and at his direction. So it’s unfair of him to grade them with a D, when they were just doing what they were told. They may have been grossly misinforming the public and putting untold lives at risk, but they were doing exactly the job that Trump hired them to do.

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

Trump Reveals to Fox News His Plan to Get the Supreme Court to Declare Him President

This year appears to have a rather sadistic bent as it relentlessly piles on melodramas and anxieties. It’s not bad enough that we are suffering through a deadly pandemic that is being dreadfully mismanaged by Donald Trump. We are also having to deal with an economy in recession and civil unrest triggered by systemic racism. And all in an especially contentious election year.

Donald Trump Tyrant Dictator

Adding to those national migraines is the tragic passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Not only has America lost an iconic figure who has made innumerable contributions to civil liberties and equal justice, but it thrusts the nation into a bitterly partisan battle to replace her. Republicans are shamelessly contradicting their previous insistence that the president shouldn’t nominate a Justice during an election year. Apparently that principle only applies to Democratic presidents. The GOP is perfectly OK with nominations by an impeached president who still has multiple criminal and civil indictments hanging over his head.

Making matters worse is Trump himself (as usual), who was “interviewed” twice in two days by Fox News. In a sit-down with Fox’s Mark Levin on Sunday night Trump whined that Fox News wasn’t sufficiently worshipful, and that they catered too much to Democrats. Are we sure that Trump even knows what channel he’s watching?

On Monday Trump visited the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends. This is apparently his new regular gig that he leaked last week. It was there that he unleashed some wild speculations and disturbing revelations. When the subject to Ginsburg’s replacement came up, Trump led off with a thoroughly disgraceful allegation maligning the integrity of Ginsburg and her family:

Ainsley Earhardt: Then you have Ruth Bader Ginsburg who told her granddaughter on her death bed, allegedly, that her dying wish was to have the next president choose her successor. How do you think all this plays out?
Trump: I don’t know that she said that, or was that written out by Adam Schiff and Schumer and Pelosi. I would be more inclined to the second. Okay, it came out of the wind. It sounds so beautiful. But that sounds like a Schumer deal or maybe a Pelosi or Shifty Schiff. So that came out of the wind. Let’s see. I mean maybe she did and maybe she didn’t.”

Trump’s assertion is entirely without foundation – or decency. He is of such weak character that he can’t help politicizing this tragedy by invoking the names of his favorite foils in Congress. Rep. Schiff replied on Twitter, telling Trump that “This is low. Even for you.” But how difficult would it be to believe that Ginsburg had such feelings. She said so many times before. Unfortunately, Trump has an insatiable need to drag everything down to his loathsome level, even if it means desecrating the memory of a universally respected and honorable American. Even if it means despicably disparaging Ginsburg’s last wishes as a Democratic hoax.

Perhaps Trump can’t believe that Ginsburg would make what he curiously concedes is a “beautiful” statement (that “came out of the wind,” whatever that means) because it so far outside anything he is capable of. But he went on to expose his true agenda that reeks of the totalitarian aspirations for which he is well known:

“The bottom line is that we won the election. We have an obligation to do what’s right and act as quickly as possible. We should act quickly because we’re gonna have, probably, election things involved here, you know, because of the fake ballots they’ll be sending out. A terrible situation.”

Oh My! Our infamously inarticulate president is recognizing the threat of “election things” involved here. Never mind that those “things” are manufactured lies about mail-in voting that Trump has been telling for months without ever bothering to provide a scrap of evidence.

More importantly, Trump is confessing that his obsession with confirming a new Supreme Court Justice is rooted in his determination to steal the election. He is anticipating a legal battle for which he wants to make sure that he has a majority on the Court to rule in his favor and, if necessary, declare him the winner. This is the sort of court manipulation that is more common under dictators who pack their courts with subservients and sycophants.

What’s more, this is not an aberration or careless misstatement. Trump made similar remarks on Saturday at his latest cult rally and Super Spreader event in North Carolina. Worried about the prospect of there not being a declared winner on election night, Trump expressed his nefarious desire to put the decision in the hands of a court system that he has packed with allies:

“Now we’re counting on the federal court system to make it so that we can actually have an evening where we know who wins. Not where the votes are going to be counted a week later or two weeks later.”

This is Trump’s way of disenfranchising citizens who vote by mail. If their ballots are postmarked on or before election day, but the ballot processing and counting is not completed until some time after, Trump wants all of those votes to be invalidated. He is literally calling for the suppression of voter’s rights. And since more Democrats vote by mail, it’s easy to see why Trump is pursuing this. It is just the logical progression of his yearning for unchecked tyrannical power. And it must be vigorously challenged if America is to remain a free democratic republic.

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

Trump is Inciting His Deplorables to Commit Violence Against Journalists

No president in America’s history has been more hostile to the press than Donald Trump. He repeatedly refers to them in Stalinist terms as the “the enemy of the people.” That openly aggressive posturing is an unambiguous assault on the constitution’s First Amendment. And Trump’s vicious rhetoric has been cited as endangering the work – and lives – of journalists, not just in the United States, but around the world.

Trump Charlotsville

On Saturday Trump took another leap crossing over the line of decency and free speech during his latest Coronavirus Super Spreader event in Minnesota. Reading from his teleprompter, Trump told a story about a reporter covering Black Lives Matter protests in the state several weeks ago:

“I remember this guy Welshi. He got hit on the knee with a canister of tear gas and he went down. He was down. […] After we take all that crap – for weeks and weeks they would take that crap – and then you finally see men get up there and go right through… Wasn’t it really a beautiful sight? It’s called law and order.”

Like virtually every story that Trump tells, almost none of this one was truthful. To begin with, the reporter’s name was Ali Velshi, not Welshi. Perhaps Trump was using the Russian pronunciation. Secondly, Velshi was hit by a rubber bullet, not a tear gas canister. But those are relatively trivial misstatements by Trump who is rarely able to express himself coherently (which has not gone unnoticed by the American people).

More troubling was Trump’s celebration of this assault on a journalist by government goons as “a beautiful sight.” How any American “leader” can describe such an attack in those favorable terms is unthinkable. Trump is affirming his long held reputation as a fascist wannabe who aligns himself with the noxious philosophies of the authoritarian dictators he so admires (i.e. Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un, Xi Jinping, etc.). These are people who brazenly violate press freedoms and even torture and murder critical journalists. And Trump is moving more in that direction every day.

Trump elaborated on his praise for federal agents physically assaulting reporters in another speech later in the day in North Carolina. In that tirade Trump got Velshi’s network wrong, saying he was with CNN, rather than MSNBC. He also lied that Velshi was reporting from a “war zone” when the truth was that he was covering a peaceful demonstration. Well, except for the feds. The video of Velshi’s reporting proves that.

Velshi himself addressed Trump’s remarks about the incident when he was shot, and asks a relevant question that Trump will surely fail to answer:

Make no mistake, this was not an off the cuff commentary by a rambling lunatic. Yes, Trump is a rambling lunatic, but this wasn’t off the cuff. He was reading from a teleprompter. And he was deliberately sending a message to his glassy-eyed disciples that assaulting journalists is something that will earn his appreciation. Trump is overtly soliciting his cult followers to commit what can only be described as terrorism. And he is promising to reward them with compliments and praise for what a “beautiful” thing they’ve done.

These remarks by Trump pretty much guarantee that more reporters will be attacked just for doing their jobs. The assailants will feel justified because the president has given his approval in advance. And if there is any justice in this world, Trump will be charged criminally and civilly for any harm that comes to journalists due to his reckless ranting.

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

Impeached Presidents Should Not Be Able To Nominate Supreme Court Justices

The passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is firstly a personal tragedy for her family, friends, colleagues, and the millions of people throughout the world who admired and were inspired by her intellect, her heart, and her fighting spirit. She is a historical figure whose impact has yet to be fully appreciated.

Donald Trump Walking the Plank

However, it would be naive to pretend that this grievous loss isn’t also a blow to the hopes and dreams of those Americans who value gender and racial equality and the Constitution’s protection for the rights of people over corporations and against the authoritarian aspirations of rogue “leaders.”

Justice Ginsburg was a guardian of the principles that ensure freedom for all Americans. Her loss would be staggering under any circumstance. But to lose her while an ignorant, sociopathic, narcissist is salivating over the prospect of replacing her with an unqualified, neanderthal wingnut is especially painful. The thought of Donald Trump selecting one of his pre-chewed right-wing Stepford judges to take the place of a bona fide superhero of constitutional jurisprudence is excruciating. And Trump’s undisguised glee at having this opportunity is salt in our wounds:

What’s missing from this statement is any hint of reality. Trump was not “put in this position of power and importance” by the American people. They voted against him by a record margin. He was installed by an archaic Electoral College that is anathema to democracy. What’s more, Americans are not proud of Trump. Quite the opposite. He is regarded as a buffoon who is only interested in himself and his puerile pleasures of golfing, tweeting, watching Fox News, and exacting revenge on his perceived enemies.

What Trump is calling an “obligation” is actually just another attempt to steal a seat on the Supreme Court on behalf of his neo-fascist associates in Congress, tunnel-blind evangelicals, and corporate overlords. Trump is violating the precedent set by his GOP confederates who refused to even give a hearing – much less a vote – to an Obama Court nominee during an election year.

Were there any justice in this world, a president who has been impeached ought not to be able to nominate a Supreme Court Justice. Furthermore, impeached presidents with close ties to numerous felons (and pending indictments of his own) should be prohibited from nominating any judges or agency heads or bull manure shovelers. Although, if you’ve ever seen Trump speaking at one of his cult rallies you’d know that shoveling bull manure is something that he is actually pretty good at.

Unfortunately, the last thing we can expect from Trump, or any Republican, is integrity or consistency. They will shamelessly march forward to breach their own precedents without regard to the brazen hypocrisy of their actions.

Consequently, Democrats need to up their game. First of all, they need to win back the White House and the Senate. Then they must abolish the filibuster. Then they need to expand the Supreme Court to fifteen seats. And finally, they need to advance to statehood Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. And it wouldn’t hurt to collapse North and South Dakota into a single state. Seriously, do we really need two sparsely populated Dakotas?

After completing these steps we can begin to restore the nation’s honor and respect for the constitutional principles that empower our democracy and enable our freedoms. We can bring justice to bear on those who betrayed the country in pursuit of greed and power. And we can heal the divisions that Trump deliberately created and exploited in order to advance his self-serving agenda.

It won’t be easy, but it wasn’t easy for Justice Ginsburg to wage a lonely fight for decades either. She should be our inspiration today. And we should be the custodians of her legacy and her last request: “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.”

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

UH-OH: GOP Accuses Biden of Cheating By Being More Intelligent than Trump

This week both Donald Trump and Joe Biden held nationally televised town halls. The difference between these two events could not have been more stark. Any voter who saw both broadcasts would likely – and ironically – agree with something Trump tweeted Thursday: “At no time before has there been a clearer choice between two parties, two visions, two philosophies, & two agendas for the future.” Can’t argue with that.

Donald Trump, Joe Biden

Trump had his town hall on ABC with George Stephanopoulos and spent 90 minutes repeating many of the same lies he’s been telling for months. He utterly failed to exhibit the slightest bit of knowledge on any subject, stumbling awkwardly off topic on virtually every question in order to hew closely to the tiresome talking points that litter his cult rally rhetoric. At the same time, he displayed a callous disrespect and lack of empathy for questioners who challenged his dishonest muttering, or for the millions of Americans they represented.

On the other hand, during the CNN town hall with Anderson Cooper, Biden was plainly well acquainted with the issues that are uppermost on the minds of the American people. And he articulated his views with a minimum of error. What’s more, he reaffirmed why he is often praised for his compassion and ability to relate to the common man and woman. His performance exposed Trump’s infantile taunts of “Sleepy” Joe, and his baseless insinuations about Biden’s mental acuity, as wholly outside of reality. Which is a place where Trump must feel comfortable considering how often he goes there.

Consequently, the Republican Confederacy of Trump-Fluffers sprung into action to malign Biden’s town hall presence. Since they can’t allow the public to simply observe Biden speaking coherently, the rightist slander squadron deployed to accuse him of cheating, implying that he must have had prior access to the questions. A representative example of this desperate attack line came from the disgraced former Fox News host, and serial sexual predator, Bill O’Reilly:

REALLY? Just to be clear, what O’Reilly and the rest of the right are accusing Biden of is being smart enough to anticipate that he would be asked questions about such topical matters as the coronavirus, jobs, voting, healthcare, the economy, policing and race, and climate change. They seem to think that only a super genius would have been able to figure that out. Obviously Trump wasn’t able to do it.

Plus, at the same time that these wingnuts are insisting that Biden couldn’t possibly retain knowledge about pressing matters that he’s dealt with for decades, they are also suggesting that he is capable of memorizing a slate of questions – and the answers – that he was allegedly provided beforehand. That alone would require a fair amount of mental dexterity that Trump could never muster.

So now Biden is “guilty” of being more intelligent than Trump (a low bar, to be sure). But this is consistent with the Republican mindset that intelligence is an elitist trait that should disqualify one from public service. They malign universities as centers of left-wing indoctrination. They refuse to respect the guidance of doctors, scientists, and other experts in professional fields. And they cling to Trump’s prideful ignorance as the leader who famously declared that he “loves the poorly educated.” And why shouldn’t he. Without them he’d have no cabinet – or voters.

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

Trump Knows He’s Losing and It’s Driving Him Crazy(er)

There is an almost pitiable factor to the very public descent of Donald Trump into an abyss of anxiety and debilitating terror. His fragile mental state is so obviously decaying before our eyes as he unleashes ever more bizarre rants and transparent, implausible falsehoods.

Donald Trump Circling the Drain

There may never have been a more conspicuous case of a public figure sucked into a downward spiral of emotional decomposition than what we are witnessing with Trump. He has been reduced to whining about an election that he’s already concluded he’s lost even though it’s still more than a month away. By his own estimation, the election has been rigged against him and the results will therefore be invalid. And not a single person has yet to cast a vote.

Trump is venting his rage at having lost in advance in an avalanche of tweets that all say essentially the same thing: “I’m a hapless victim of people having the audacity to vote against me.” He is baselessly warning that the “election result may NEVER BE ACCURATELY DETERMINED,” and imploring to anyone who might be listening to “Stop Ballot Madness!” For instance…


So Trump wants to interfere with states’ rights in order to demand that all voters be forced to go to the polls amidst a deadly viral pandemic. He asserts that it would be “like always before” even though mail-in voting has been a part of the electoral process for decades.


For the second time Trump is threatening some unspecified “MAYHEM” if people vote the same way they have been for years. And he also repeats the vague admonition that these states had better obey him “before it’s too late.” Or what?


Now Trump is repeatedly alleging, without any evidence, that foreign countries will disrupt our election if voting by mail is permitted. But the only foreign interference that has been documented is that conducted by Russia with Trump’s cooperation. Also notable is that all three of the tweets above were flagged by Twitter for dispensing misinformation.


And to top it all off, Trump is now trying to persuade his cult followers to vote by mail themselves, after having declared the whole thing an invitation to fraud and espionage.

These attacks on mail-in voting are simply Trump’s way of priming his deplorable disciples for what he clearly realizes is a historic electoral defeat. Rather than display some measure of dignity and patriotism, Trump is determined to incite civil unrest as he advances his aspirations for authoritarian tyranny.

So it’s up to the American people to prevent such an outcome by producing the sort of landslide victory for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris (and Democratic senators and congresspersons and state representatives) that will make it impossible for Trump’s impotent accusations of fraud to be taken seriously. That means unwavering commitment and hard work. Because the clearer it is that Trump is a loser, the more insane his assaults on his political foes – and America – will become. Stay Strong!

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

Trump is Advocating ‘Herd Mentality’ Knowing it Will Kill 2 Million Americans

On Tuesday evening, Donald Trump took a rare step outside of his protective Fox News bunker for a town hall style interview on ABC with George Stephanopoulos. It was a pitiful spectacle of prideful ignorance and shameless lying. In other words, business as usual for Trump.

Donald Trump, Coronavirus

Among the many dangerously dishonest departures from reality disseminated by The Donald were his bizarre defenses of his incompetent and deadly mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to spreading many of the same falsehoods he’s been putting out for months, Trump contradicted himself by denying that he downplayed the severity of COVID-19 (which he admitted to in the new book, RAGE! by Bob Woodward), while also insisting that he did downplay it in an effort to avoid creating a panic. So Trump was simultaneously downplaying it and not downplaying it, a feat only possible by an acutely disturbed psychotic (which is pretty much what America thinks of Trump).

When the discussion came around to the development of a vaccine, Trump managed to surprise Stephanopoulos with a claim that no public health expert or epidemiologist would give any credibility to. That led to this exchange:

STEPHANOPOULOS: It would go away without the vaccine?
TRUMP: Sure, over a period of time. Sure, with time it goes away.
STEPHANOPOULOS: And many deaths.
TRUMP: And you’ll develop — you’ll develop herd — like a herd mentality. It’s going to be — it’s going to be herd-developed, and that’s going to happen. That will all happen.

First of all, Trump’s cognitive infirmity produced a glitch that resulted in his reference to “herd mentality” when he likely meant “herd immunity.” Herd mentality is something completely different, but familiar to those who study cult behaviors. Which may explain why it was on Trump’s mind.

More to the point. Trump is proposing a “solution” to the pandemic that would be nothing less than catastrophic. The herd immunity to which Trump was trying to refer is a process that requires 60-80% of the population to become infected. By even the most conservative estimates, that would result in more than two million American deaths.

What makes this all the worse is that Trump knows this horrifying fact and is apparently comfortable with it. That was not always the case. Back in April Trump addressed this subject and forthrightly rejected the concept of herd immunity:

“At a news briefing centered on the virus, Trump was asked about Sweden’s decision to embrace a ‘herd immunity’ approach to it, allowing it to spread widely enough that there would be enough people with immunity to slow the spread. ‘I think we could have followed that approach,’ Trump said of Sweden’s strategy. ‘And if we did follow that approach, I think we might have 2 million people dead.'”

So five months ago Trump opposed herd immunity and the prospect of millions of fatalities. But now, as the number of American deaths approaches 200,000, he’s embracing it without concern for the victims. And he’s doing everything he can to achieve herd immunity at the expense of his own cult followers. He is gathering them into indoor facilities without adhering to his own CDC guidelines that call for social distancing and face masks.

Unfortunately, the herd/ignoramus mentality practiced by these glassy-eyed Trump disciples will also put the rest of us at risk. As they spread out in the communities where they live and work they will expose people to the virus who would never have attended a Trump revival meeting. So those of us who are not brain damaged StormTrumpers will need to be extra careful in the coming weeks. And hopefully, with determination and hard work, we will evict Trump and his ghoulish confederacy of traitors from our White House.

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

Trump Shocks Fox News By Leaking Secret Deal for a Weekly Segment.

Throughout the 2020 presidential campaign, Donald Trump has affirmed his cowardly approach to the media. The vast majority of his interviews have been reserved for the Fox News Trump-fluffers that he knows will be gentle with him. He has virtually sealed himself in a Fox News bunker. But despite his tedious and impotent repetition of Stalinist inspired catch phrases like “fake news” and “the media is the enemy of the people,” Trump, as he recently admitted, spends hours watching Fox every day.

Donald Trump, Mask, Fox News

Trump’s reliance on glassy-eyed disciples like Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Tucker Carlson, Lou Dobbs, and Maria Bartiromo, is further evidence of the cult-like nature of his following. And no one can plausibly deny that Fox News isn’t fulfilling its role as Trump’s Ministry of Disinformation. It’s the same sort of mutually beneficial relationship that parasites enjoy with their willing hosts.

On Tuesday morning Trump visited once again with the network’s “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends. The “interview” was typical of the slobbering tongue baths that Trump is accustomed to on the network. The adoring hosts smiled vacantly as Trump accused Joe Biden of using drugs during previous debates and public appearances. They declined to follow up after he asserted that the governor of Nevada is going to rig the ballots in his state. They fawned over his phony “peace” agreement that entirely excluded the Palestinians. They valiantly kept straight faces when Trump blamed wildfires on “exploding trees.”

However, there was a moment of melodrama when Trump seemed to reveal a secret agreement that he made with his Fox News benefactors. It went something like this…

Trump: It’s good to be here. It’s great to be with my friends. I think we’re gonna do this, we’ve agreed to do it once a week in the morning, and I look forward to it. Like the old days.
Steve Doocy: I haven’t heard that. Well, that’s an exclusive.right there.

So Trump just broke the news of a programming agreement between him and Fox. Trump was also fondly recalling his pre-presidential days when he had a weekly segment on Fox and Friends called “Mondays with Trump.” However, now that he resides in the White House, such an arrangement would be wholly inappropriate for both Trump and Fox News. It was so improper that when Trump repeated the news later in the program, Doocy – probably on orders from producers in the control room – shot it down in this awkward exchange:

Trump: We’re going to do it every week. Every Monday, I think they said. And if we can’t do it on a Monday, we’ll do it on a Tuesday like we did today.
Doocy: You may want to do it every week but Fox has not committed to that. We’re going to take it on a case-by-case basis. And Joe Biden, as well, is always welcome to join us for 47 minutes like we just did with the president.

Note that Trump had already hung up by the time Doocy issued his denial that an agreement had been reached. But Trump was not expressing some vague desire to have a weekly segment. He explicitly said that “we’ve agreed to do it,” and referred to what “they said” about his new regular Fox gig. Of course knowing Trump, that could have been either a lie, a figment of his imagination, or the truth that was supposed to be confidential.

No matter, Trump’s casual acceptance of such a flagrantly unethical deal reveals how comfortable he is with embracing blatant propaganda. It also tells us that he has an hour available to chat with with his Fox friends every week. That’s important because it would significantly cut into his other primary duties: golfing, tweeting, and watching other programs on Fox News.

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

Wannabe Dictator Trump Orders AG Barr to Prosecute Clinton for Following the Rules

It’s always to easy to see when Donald Trump is freaking out over some perceived slight or the unforgivable offense of someone daring to tell the truth about him. If he were a poker player his “tell” would be throwing a tantrum and overturning the table. He has the emotional response mechanism of a four year old, if that.

Donald Trump, Bill Barr

On Monday morning Trump overturned the figurative table in a frantic tweetstorm that was clearly intended to deflect from some of the more serious news stories of the past week. For instance, Bob Woodward’s new book, Rage, exposed Trump for having known just how deadly the coronavirus is, but lying about it to the American people. An article in The Atlantic revealed Trump’s disregard for America’s war dead as “losers” and “suckers.” And his polling versus Joe Biden continues to decline, as does his fundraising.

Consequently, Trump needed a distraction to avoid having to deal with these problems. So he reached back into his bag of golden oldies and pulled out a moldy conspiracy theory regarding cell phones used by Hillary Clinton and others in the Obama administration. The nightmare tale that Trump unfolded suggests that these folks conspired to hide damning evidence of some imaginary crimes by deleting the contents of their phones before returning them to the government inventory. Trump posted eight tweets on this subject. The substance of his commentary consisted of profound remarks like “Action must be taken!,” and “DOJ?,” and this classic that also trivializes a threat to lynch a black NASCAR driver:

Trump has tweeted and spoken about these bogus allegations dozens of times in recent weeks. And he has been helped by Sean Hannity of Fox News, who hosted Trump’s press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, Friday night to disseminate the same falsehoods (video below).

There is, however, absolutely no credibility to these charges. In fact, Clinton, and every other government employee, are actually required to wipe the contents off of their phones and other electronic devices, or physically destroy them, as a security precaution to prevent confidential information from being exposed. A State Department official explained this directive to Wired Magazine in 2016, saying that…

“‘…department security policies mandate that all electronic devices are cleared of sensitive or classified information prior to reuse or disposal.’ Some devices are wiped and reused, in other words, while others are destroyed as part of the recycling process.”

So Trump’s purported scandal is that Clinton et al are following the rules. Nevertheless, Trump is improperly pressuring his Attorney Genuflect, Bill Barr to “take action” against his political foes. And all because of this fictional “crime” that is really just another example of Trump’s flaming ignorance of the government that he pretends to lead. And Barr is likely to follow those orders, just as he has with regard to dropping charges against Michael Flynn, and siccing his “special” prosecutor on Joe Biden. Fortunately, the American people are not falling for it, and Trump is just digging himself into an ever deeper hole.

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