Shepard Smith Brutally Roasts Fox News in First Amendment Award Acceptance Speech

There has been one voice on Fox News who has dared to challenge the doctrinal mission of America’s most nauseatingly right-wing network. Shepard Smith is an anomaly whose continued presence is something of a mystery. As part of the so-called “news” side of Fox News (which doesn’t really exist), Smith has repeatedly exposed the lies that his own colleagues disseminate on a daily basis.

Fox News, Shepard Smith, Donald Trump

Smith has done segments where he slammed the network’s narrative on former Donald Trump advisor Michael Flynn. He ridiculed the administration’s immigration hysteria. He spelled out precisely why the Mueller investigation is legitimate and warranted. He even got into a war of words with Sean Hannity and the other “opinion” meisters on Fox, separating himself from whatever it is that they do:

“We serve different masters. We work for different reporting chains, we have different rules. They don’t really have rules on the opinion side. They can say whatever they want. If it’s their opinion. I don’t really watch a lot of opinion programming. I’m busy.”

Smith must have some pretty embarrassing photos of Rupert Murdoch locked away somewhere. His departure from the approved political Foxisms frequently contradicts the commentaries by other hosts and contributors. By provided detailed and factual reports on issues that Fox regulars routinely lie about, he’s exposing them as purposefully dishonest. But he’s getting away with it, so far.

The most recent swipe at his network pals came while Smith was receiving a First Amendment award from the Radio Television Digital News Association (video below). His remarks did not explicitly identify any individual or program, but the tone was unmistakably critical of the flagrantly biased Trump sycophants who litter most of the Fox News schedule. Smith said that:

“Being accurate and honest and thorough and fair is our primary mission. It’s our professional calling. And everyone on my team takes it extremely seriously. […] We must never manipulate or invent. We must never knowingly deceive. Because to do so is a disservice to our audience and potentially injurious to our society. I am convinced that upon those who intentionally misinform, history will poorly reflect. The times ahead will test all of us as finders and disseminators of accurate information.”

Those words must sting Hannity, and Laura Ingraham, and Tucker Carlson, and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends, like holy water stings the devil. Their whole reason for being is to manipulate, invent, and deceive. They are Trump’s first line of defense, as well as the hostile flank assembled to malign Democrats and other Trump critics.

Fortunately, the glow of Fox News is weakening as both their audience and their advertisers are fleeing the network. They are rapidly tiring of the relentless negativity and lies. And Fox isn’t helping themselves by allowing blatant hate speech to be broadcast without any repercussions. The result is that MSNBC has been beating Fox on a regular basis for the past four months, with Rachel Maddow leading the way as the most watched program on cable news.

You have to wonder how much longer Shepard Smith will be able to make fools of his Fox associates and keep his daily program. The cult of Fox News (aka the cult of Trump) is not exactly comfortable with Smith, who they demand be fired at once. Their hostile and profane attacks are proof that the network is aimed at a hive-mind audience of blind followers who can’t tolerate any exposure to facts, or diversity of opinion. Consequently, Smith is trying their patience by providing some occasional truths and having the audacity to win awards that honor the First Amendment – something that Fox News and Trump bitterly oppose.

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

Hair Trump Threatens to Use His ‘Tough People’ – the Police, Military, Bikers – Against Democrats

For most his presidency, Donald Trump has demonstrated a perverse infatuation with the tyrannical despots who represent some of America’s most virulent enemies. From Vladimir Putin to Xi Jinping to Kim Jong Un to Muhammad Salman, Trump has shown an adoring preference for their brand of autocracy, and a deference to their flagrant lies over the facts provided by his own intelligence agencies.

Donald Trump

The compulsion by Trump to emulate these dictators has not been incidental. He has explicitly expressed his aspiration to command the same blind loyalty that these authoritarians insist upon. He pined over Xi.” becoming president for life. He yearned to be “worshipped” like Kim. He has spoken openly about “revolution” if he is impeached.

Now Trump has elaborated on these anti-democratic, un-American tendencies in an interview with the ultra-rightist Breitbart website. Rather than show respect for the diversity of opinion in American politics, Trump has articulated an approach to his critics that is overtly hostile and illegal. He told Breitbart that:

“I can tell you I have the support of the police, the support of the military, the support of the Bikers for Trump – I have the tough people, but they don’t play it tough — until they go to a certain point, and then it would be very bad, very bad.”

That is an unambiguous threat of the sort that mobsters (with whom Trump is well familiar) would make against their foes. But it’s even worse than that.Trump is asserting that he personally has control of the police and the military and that they will obey his singular will. That’s the talk of a crazed, third world strongman, not a democratic president. Who is he proposing to attack with this fantasy force he’s pretending to command? Nancy Pelosi? Gavin Newsom? Robert Mueller?

And for some extra added totalitarian flavor, Trump insults the very troops that he thinks are his allies. He associates the police and the military with outlaw biker gangs who have no law enforcement authority, but whom Trump regards as part of his loony defense force.

These are the martinets of the Trump regime who he expects will bear arms against their fellow citizens. It’s all part of his campaign to divide America into hostile factions. And anyone not on his side will be maligned in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people,” just has he as already been doing for years to our nation’s free press. He will be the one source of truth and the one commander of his twisted anti-patriots. He really seems to be preparing for a Jonestown-like event wherein he orders his cult followers to make the final sacrifice.

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

Trump Agrees with Nancy Pelosi, Inadvertently Making the Case for His Own Impeachment

The Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, created a bit of stir this week when she weighed in on the question of impeaching Donald Trump. It’s a question that has been asked by many in political circles, as well as millions of Americans troubled by the President’s unsavory associations with Russia, obstruction of justice, financial corruption, and other pending crimes.

Donald Trump Impeach

Pelosi made a fairly conclusive statement in a response to an inquiry by the Washington Post. While many people on both sides of this issue interpreted her remarks differently, they had a distinct tone that couldn’t help but indicate an openness to impeachment under the right circumstances. She said that:

“Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there’s something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don’t think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he’s just not worth it.”

So Pelosi explicitly said that impeachment is on the table if there is compelling evidence and bipartisan participation. The latter would come with the disclosure of the former. She also coyly taunted Trump by saying that he isn’t worth the trouble. That could outrage him so much that he will insist on impeachment hearings just to prove that he is worth it. Which is almost what he did with his Wednesday morning tweetstorm:

So Trump appreciates Pelosi’s statement. You have to wonder if he actually read it or if he was only told about the part where she was reticent to “go down that path.” But without his making any distinction, it appears that he’s cool with impeachment given the same criteria that Pelosi outlined. Which is the criteria that almost everyone supports.

Note also that Trump has the absurd opinion that a president cannot be impeached if he is (or thinks he is) popular and/or successful. Of course that has nothing to with whether or not he broke the law. Richard Nixon had real diplomatic achievements with China, and he signed the bill creating the Environmental Protection Agency. But he was still driven from office for committing flagrant crimes against the country.

What’s more, by Trump’s own standards it’s open season for his impeachment. He has not produced any significant successes other than packing the courts with ultra-rightist judges, exploding the national debt, inflaming tensions in North Korea, abandoning the environment, relieving corporations and the wealthy of their tax burdens, sabotaging healthcare, and generally creating more hatred and division. And for all of that he is sitting on the most persistently low approval ratings in modern times.

So according to Trump, it’s full steam ahead with impeachment. After all, he’s the only one who thinks that he’s the most successful president in history. And as for evidence, the vice-chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee recently said that there’s plenty of it. So if it’s OK with Trump, it’s OK with me. And it’s certainly OK with the seven million plus Americans who have signed the Need to Impeach petition, and also the forty-two percent (up six points since November) who favor impeachment in recent polling. So let’s get on with it, shall we?

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

Fox News Hypes Fake Trump Front Group Formed to Conceal that the Republican Party Hates Jews

The conservative manufactured controversy over Rep. Ilhan Omar’s remarks concerning Israel are continuing to be inflamed by Donald Trump’s State TV division, Fox News. The House of Representatives has already passed a resolution that condemns hate of all kinds – whether directed at Jews, Muslims, or anyone else – which all Democrats voted for, but which twenty-three Republicans voted against.

Fox News, Elizabeth Pipko

The determination by Republicans and Fox News now is to slander Democrats as as anti-Semitic. That’s an absurd stretch considering that Democrats have been the most supportive party of the generally progressive views of the majority of American Jews. At the same time, Republicans have been the welcoming home of neo-Nazis and racial hate groups who are often openly lobbied by GOP candidates, including Trump.

On Monday Trump lashed out incoherently (as usual) against Democrats, saying that they are “the anti-Israel party, the anti-Jewish Party.” Never mind that Jews having been voting Democratic in overwhelming majorities (70-80%) for decades. So naturally Fox News has had to come to Trump’s rescue by participating in a fraudulent campaign to pretend that Jews are suddenly unhappy as Democrats and are leaving for the Trump Republican Nationalist Party. To that end, Fox and Friends interviewed Elizabeth Pipko (video below), a former model enlisted as the spokesperson for a group called “Jexodus.” She began her contrivance by saying that:

“I thought it was time. Obviously we saw a lot of anti-Israel policies kinda start under the Obama administration. And it got worse and worse and it was blasted on our TV screens the last month. There is anti-Semitism in the Democratic Party. They can hide it, they can do whatever they want. They failed to condemn it and now it’s there. So it’s time.”

Of course, they did condemn it. But Trump was watching (as he always does) and tweeted the above quote. During the segment Pipko conceded that Jews have been generally supportive of Democrats. But she failed to grasp that the reason for that is that Democratic policies of inclusion and compassion and equality are aligned with those of most Jewish voters. And there is also a reason why neo-Nazi and racist groups have been loyal supporters of the GOP and Trump. But Pipko seemed oblivious to the fact that Jews were already satisfied with the political judgments they’ve made:

“I thought that people would at least understand – my Jewish friends of mine – would understand why I supported [Trump]. They didn’t at first, and they never changed their mind. They stuck to the narrative that President Trump is bad and they refused to change. […] I don’t think they’re going to change.”

Exactly. The choices made by Jewish voters were based on their knowledge of the political landscape with a full understanding of the issues important to them. Pipko, Fox News, and Trump seem to think they are too stupid to make a decision regarding their own best interests. So this phony front group was formed to pretend that there is a movement of disaffected Democratic Jews. Even though Pipko admitted that her own friends were still staunchly Democratic. It is reminiscent of “Blexit,” which falsely asserted that African-Americans were also abandoning the Democrats.

There is nothing genuine about this “Jexodus” nonsense, including the name. After all, “Exodus” was already about Jews involved in a mass departure. It hardly needs a “J” added to the front. But more importantly, it’s a totally fabricated crusade to demonize Democrats – especially the Jewish ones – for their independent thinking. Pipko is just another spokesmodel for the right-wing’s exclusionary dogma. And her otherwise irrelevant project would have been deservedly ignored but for the prejudiced intervention of Fox News and Donald Trump.

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

Why Won’t Fox News Fire Tucker Carlson? Their Deplorable Viewers Will Watch Whoever Replaces Him

Following a week where Jane Mayer’s exhaustive New Yorker essay exposing how Fox News has transformed from a Republican mouthpiece into the propaganda arm of Donald Trump’s White House, the network is undergoing additional hardship due to its own embrace of doctrinaire hate speech.

Fox News, Tucker Carlson, Donald Trump

The primetime White Nationalist Hour of Tucker Carlson has long been a haven for bigotry dispensed by the most smugly arrogant blowhard on television. Carlson has the distinction of having been fired from three TV networks (PBS, CNN, and MSNBC). However, when he landed at Fox News (despite his previous bad blood with the network), he had truly found his TV soul mate, where he could blather incessantly about “dirty” immigrants and loving all Americans, even the Klan members.

Now Media Matters has unearthed some recordings of Carlson when he was a guest on a rather profane radio show hosted by Bubba, the Love Sponge. His rantings were among the most repulsively misogynistic tirades ever made in a public forum by a well known pundit. In the video compilation Carlson can heard blatantly defending a convicted sexual abuser and justifying child rape:

Subsequently, there has been an outcry for advertisers to boycott Fox News (which many are already doing), and for Fox to fire Tucker Carlson. For the moment, that doesn’t appear to a likely consequence of Carlson’s disgusting behavior. His response to the controversy was a brazenly unapologetic tweet that dismissed any acknowledgement of his grotesque commentaries:

“Media Matters caught me saying something naughty on a radio show more than a decade ago. Rather than express the usual ritual contrition, how about this: I’m on television every weeknight live for an hour. If you want to know what I think, you can watch. Anyone who disagrees with my views is welcome to come on and explain why.”

First of all, what Carlson said wasn’t “naughty.” It was obscene, hostile, and utterly contemptible. It was degrading and dangerous. There is no excuse for the nauseating views he disgorged over and over again. Secondly, his attempt to dismiss it as having occurred a decade ago are laughably hypocritical. He surely doesn’t have the same forgiveness for the North Carolina governor’s blackface photos in a thirty year old college yearbook. Or for the decades old philandering of Bill Clinton. Or for the forty year old remarks by Joe Biden that Carlson featured on last Friday’s show.

Finally, his suggestion that the solution to this problem is for his critics to come on his show and help boost his floundering ratings is grossly self-serving. Plus, it’s a lie that he’ll let “anyone” come on his show to confront him. His modus operandi is to entrap his guests with contrived questions of the “Have you stopped beating your wife” variety. And if they manage to get the upper hand, he interrupts them and cuts them off.

So Fox News is once again being faced with a public backlash caused by one of their noxious hosts. They are simultaneously dealing with comments by Jeanine Pirro, who delivered one of her patented teeth-gnashing, spittle-inflected assaults on Rep. Ilhan Omar that asserted she was anti-America and anti-Constitution because she’s a practicing Muslim. Fox News actually released a statement “strongly condemning” Pirro, but will likely do nothing else.

What’s funny is that they could easily fire Carlson and suffer little or no repercussions outside of the PR hit. The core Fox News audience has demonstrated through the years that they will watch whatever is on Fox, no matter what or who it is. It appears that one obnoxious, lying hate monger is the same as another. So Fox could jettison Carlson and replace him with Jason Chaffetz or Brian Kilmeade and no one would flinch. So why won’t Fox fire Tucker Carlson?

First and foremost, Fox News agrees with Carlson. The network’s mission has always been in alignment with just the sort of repellant verbal abuse that Carlson unleashed in the video above. What’s more, Rupert Murdoch has been a notoriously stubborn purveyor of right-wing media. He will hang on to failing properties for years with the expectation that sheer persistence will bring success. And he has a physical aversion to conceding that he’s ever wrong about anything.

That blind faith in always being right is something Murdoch shares with Donald Trump. And something else they share is the belief that – as Trump put it – he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose any of his supporters. That appears to be the working thesis at Fox News where the carnage produced by Carlson, Pirro, and others won’t have any cost in ratings. So even though it would be easier to let Carlson go and plug in another wingnut bot, Fox will cling to his revolting personage and try to weather the storm.

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

Unfortunately for Fox News, that old method of doing business may not hold up in the future. The network has been bleeding audience, advertisers, and revenue for several months. Rachel Maddow is kicking Sean Hannity’s fat arse. And the more that Fox clutches tightly to Trump, the worse their prospects have been. So time will tell if enabling jerkwads like Carlson will pay off in the long run.

Peak Stupidity: Ranking GOP Member of House Intel Committee Thinks Asking for Straws is Socialism

The most recent polls show that the American people, particularly the young, are not generally fearful of what used to be portrayed as the scourge of socialism. In fact, a more enlightened public is now aware that some of this country’s most cherished institutions (Medicare, Social Security, public schools, etc.) were developed directly from socialist ideas. And new policies that advocate universal health coverage and tuition-free college are gaining in popularity.

Devin Nunes

Of course those views are not shared by the Fox News viewing Deplorables who still worship at the Cult of Donald Trump. Their disdain for an agenda that seeks to mitigate the historically high income inequality, and to make fairness in jobs, taxation, and education a priority, is as strong as ever. And it’s strength is rooted in the ignorance of what socialism actually is.

A perfect example of that ignorance exposed itself Sunday morning in the form of a tweet by Republican Devin Nunes. He is best known for his corrupt chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee wherein he distorted the hearings it held and colluded with Trump to shape White House propaganda. With the Democrats having taken over the majority in the House, Nunes is now the ranking member, while Adam Schiff was elevated to chairman.

The tweet Nunes posted displays his pitiful misunderstanding of socialism, while also advancing his prejudicial views. He tweeted that:

Nunes is breaking the sound barrier of dumbassedness here. He is somehow associating a policy that seeks to reduce pollution and waste with his nightmare of a government controlled society. But free citizens in a democracy frequently enact bills that produce a desired and positive effect. That’s actually a validation of freedom, not some imaginary “Straw Police State.”

Nunes must also oppose separating recyclable garbage, banning cancer causing asbestos, health warnings on cigarettes, and increasing vehicle fuel efficiency standards. Anything that actually improves the lives of the people is inherently anti-Republican, because it interferes with their right to unlimited profits despite the public harm.

What’s more, Nunes is blissfully unaware of his own embrace of socialism. As a farmer in the Central Valley of California (although that is in dispute), Nunes has received tens of thousands of dollars in government subsidies. The district that he represents has received nearly half a billion dollars since 1995. How would Nunes define those handouts to people and businesses who are already prosperous?

This is the kind of idiocy that marks the Republican aversion to, and attacks on, socialism and the new breed of proud Social Democrats like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. It is the result of being uninformed and unwilling to learn. And that problem is exacerbated by Fox News, who disseminate the lies and distortions of numbskulls like Nunes. It’s one of the reasons that Donald Trump says that he “loves the uneducated.” Without them he would never have been elected and no one would show up at his cult rallies.

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

Fair and WTF? Fox News Insults Democrat as ‘Bird-Brained’, Exalts Republican as ‘Modern Marvel’

Last week the media was abuzz over the “controversy” about whether or not Fox News should be permitted to host a Democratic primary debate. That’s a pretty easy question to resolve considering Fox’s history of bias. And a few weeks ago, Tom Perez, the chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) reversed his prior public statements on the subject and announced that Fox News would not be considered as a debate broadcast partner.

Fox News Alert

Naturally, this outraged Fox News and it’s forward flank of Storm-Trumpers who were appalled at losing their opportunity to disparage Democratic presidential candidates on national television. But their disingenuous consternation was a fraud from the start. They complained that they are a legitimate news enterprise with reputable journalists. Never mind that the vast majority of their airtime is dominated by rightist surrogates for Donald Trump who pretend to be nonpartisan reporters.

When that argument failed to persuade anyone that Fox News was an appropriate platform for a Democratic debate, they accused Democrats of being afraid of Fox. Why Fox thinks that impugning the character of Democrats as cowards is a good way to convince the party that Fox is unbiased is puzzling, to say the least. That charge is both unfair and untrue. It isn’t fear, but intelligence, that drove Democrats to decline to assist Fox in sabotaging their candidates. It makes no sense to reward a network that spends twenty-four hours a day promoting Trump as their savior, while viciously maligning Democrats and others who dare to challenge Trump’s divine right to absolute power.

Now Fox News is helpfully validating the decision by the DNC by continuing to demonstrate their abject hatred for Democrats. On their website they posted two stories next to each other that tells the tale of of Fox’s blatant political prejudices. One story featured a favorite foil for Fox News, Democratic representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. She was pictured with a caption that read “Bird-Brained” and was accompanied by an article by an avowed climate denier who criticized her “Green New Deal.”

The other story was about Republican representative Dan Crenshaw. He is also a veteran who lost an eye in Afghanistan. His story had a caption reading “Modern Marvel” and was headlined “GOP Rep Reveals ‘Captain America’ Glass Eye to Avengers Star.” The accompanying piece was a short, unnarrated video of Crenshaw meeting actor Chris Evans.

Fox News, Ocasio-Cortez, Crenshaw

So Fox News chose to juxtapose a story about a Republican they portrayed as a superhero with one about a women they maligned as ignorant and evil. And this is the network that has seriously tried to argue that they should be treated like a legitimate news operation that can fairly moderate a political debate by the party they so obviously despise. What a joke. At least we can be thankful that they are so profoundly stupid that they continue to provide these examples of why they should never be taken seriously.

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

Trump’s Fox News Spawned PR Boss, Bill Shine, Flames Out, Gets Demoted to Campaign Flunky

It was only about eight months ago that Donald Trump reached out to the disgraced former president of Fox News, Bill Shine, and asked him to take a White House position as Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications. While many found this appointment peculiar, it actually made perfect sense. After all, Both Trump and Shine were products of Fox News and were associated with predatory sexual harassment and abuse.

Donald Trump, Bill Shine

However, for some reason this marriage made in Hades didn’t work out, and Shine has now resigned amidst speculation that Trump was bitterly disappointed with his work. Apparently, Trump expected Shine to generate positive news for a president who does nothing but whine, insult others, and lie compulsively. In Shine’s defense, no one could turn that stink bomb into a sweet smelling bouquet. According insiders as reported by CNN:

“Shine’s effectiveness inside the West Wing came with mixed results and it was unclear how much he was able to change the White House’s communications strategy. One source close to the White House told CNN that Trump had questioned Shine’s judgment on a number of issues in recent months, from the midterm election to the government shutdown.”

Indeed, the midterm election resulted in an historic forty seat gain by Democrats in the the House of Representatives. And the Trump Shutdown brought him even more disrepute and scorn than he had previously earned for his repeated failures domestically and internationally. Shine’s bumbling tenure at the White House was notable for a number of short Twitter videos that resembled nothing more than the propaganda produced by the Information Ministries of third world tyrants. They always featured the President bragging about some project that flopped thanks to his absence of knowledge and leadership. Even Trump recognized the weakness of Shine’s efforts and leaned on them to avoid placing any blame on himself:

“Trump had been down on Shine for at least a few months, believing him ineffective and not what he’d hoped for when he hired him, according to people familiar. Shine’s role basically became the person who adjusted the lighting and focused the cameras, and he showed no ability to shape a narrative or communications strategy.”

Anyone at Fox News might have been able to warn Trump about Shine. Before he was abruptly terminated, his network colleagues viewed him as a hollow “yes man” to the late Roger Ailes. And when put in a leadership role at either Fox or the White House, he has proven that he was never more than a clueless loser who rose to prominence for having been Sean Hannity’s producer. And perhaps the only White House “achievement” that Shine can point to is an anti-free press decree governing the conduct of journalists.

Now that pathetic resume has resulted in Shine getting a new job with Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign. Even though he’s still technically on the Fox News payroll. Nevertheless, you have to wonder why someone who is being kicked out the door for ineptitude would still be relied on for such a critical task. But his position with the campaign will likely bring both relief and joy – to Democrats.

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

So now the communications post at the White House is once again vacant. Shine was the sixth person to fail at this job following Jason Miller, Sean Spicer, Mike Dubke, Hope Hicks, and famously Anthony Scaramucci, who lasted ten whole days before self-destructing. And the jockeying for a replacement will soon begin. Look for a another Fox News alum (Laura Ingraham?) to step up. They are practically the only people that Trump knows or trusts.

Fox News Blacklists Conservatives for ‘Refusing to Fawn Over President Donald Trump’

Earlier this week Jane Mayer of the New Yorker published an exhaustive treatise detailing how Fox News and Donald Trump’s White House have become inextricably intertwined. The article presented numerous examples of the network working hand in hand with the administration to either whitewash Trump’s failures or malign his critics. While the political bias of Fox News is not a revelation, the aggregation of so much evidence in one story has a had a real impact.

Fox News, Censorship

Among those impacted was the Democratic National Committee (DNC), who shortly after the article was published reversed their prior position of allowing Fox News to host a Democratic primary debate. That was never a good idea, but it took the voluminous presentation by Mayer to convince the DNC. And subsequently, more testimony to Fox’s propagandistic aspirations have come to light.

Bernard Goldberg was once a familiar face on Fox’s right-wing roster. He was a frequent contributor to the O’Reilly Factor before Bill O’Reilly was fired for multiple instances of sexual harassment that cost the network millions of dollars in settlement fees. O’Reilly’s termination occurred just a couple of months after Trump’s inauguration. And it wasn’t long after that that Goldberg found himself person non grata for an entirely different reason. According to Newsweek (because Goldberg’s website is blocked by a paywall):

“Goldberg detailed how Fox News executives refused to allow conservatives to criticize Trump and other right-wing figures, such as Sarah Palin. Goldberg wrote a Tuesday blog post on his personal website saying top figures at the cable network sought retribution against him after he complained Sean Hannity and other hosts were only flattering Trump and Palin during interviews rather than pressing them journalistically.”

Goldberg went on to lambaste Fox and singled out Sean Hannity for conducting interviews that “resemble wet kisses a lot more than journalism.” And he further alleged that Fox News was blacklisting any conservative on the network who wasn’t unwaveringly adoring of Donald Trump. But the banishment was strictly limited to disloyal conservatives.

“Fox will tolerate a liberal criticizing President Trump, I said, but the network didn’t want conservatives taking shots at him. Sometimes I defended the president against what I thought was unfair criticism. But I was also critical of Mr. Trump, of his vindictiveness and his dishonesty.”

This is the environment at Fox News as described by a stalwart conservative commentator. And the treatment he’s receiving isn’t unique to him. Fox previously jettisoned conservative Trump critics like David Frum, Bill Kristol, and George Will. It’s clear that anyone who strays from the approved doctrine will be excommunicated and banished.

Now some people are aghast that the DNC nixed Fox as a host for their primary debates. It seems unarguable that a network that has devoted itself to destroying Democrats through insults and lies ought not to recognized as a legitimate news enterprise and rewarded for their abuse. Indeed, Fox’s rabid hatred for Democrats even led one of their top personalities, Lou Dobbs, to tweet a call for Democrats to be prosecuted for abuse of power and treason. It’s also rather hypocritical to criticize Democrats for blacklisting Fox when Fox itself is blacklisting their own conservatives who they now feel have wandered off the wingnut trail.

Some of the critics of the DNC’s decision claim that Fox has some reputable journalists and shouldn’t be shut out. But that’s an absurd argument. No one would attend a convention of their mortal enemies simply because there might be a handful of neutral bystanders hanging around. And those who say that Democrats who are “afraid” to appear on Fox aren’t fit for office are also missing the point. Nobody is afraid of Fox. It isn’t fear that brought about this decision. Quite the opposite. It’s having the courage to smack down a loud, aggressive, bullying opponent who means you nothing but harm. And it’s having the intelligence to deny a phony “news” operation the legitimacy of your presence and participation.

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

The portrait that Goldberg paints of the editorial prejudices at Fox News corroborates everything that Mayer revealed in her article. And that article corroborates everything that many critics of Fox have been saying for years. And while the biases of Fox have been well known for a long time, they have gotten much worse during the Trump era. It is now a fully devotional cult worshiping clan wherein there is no discernible distinction between Fox and the Trump administration. And that is no place hold a “fair and balanced” debate for any political party.

Top 10 Reasons the DNC Was Right to Refuse a Fox News Hosted Democratic Primary Debate

A few weeks ago the chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Tom Perez, was asked by Fox News anchor Bret Baier whether he would consider scheduling a Democratic Party primary debate on Fox News. Perez responded saying “Absolutely, we’re having discussions with Fox and others.” That reply was widely criticized by Democrats appalled at the notion of rewarding the propaganda arm of the Trump White House with that kind of opportunity to continue their campaign of political sabotage.

Fox News Sad

However, after the publication of Jane Mayer’s article in the New Yorker that detailed the all-consuming embrace between Donald Trump and Fox News, it appears that Perez has had a wise and welcome change of heart. He now says that:

“I believe that a key pathway to victory is to continue to expand our electorate and reach all voters. That is why I have made it a priority to talk to a broad array of potential media partners, including Fox News. Recent reporting in the New Yorker on the inappropriate relationship between President Trump, his administration and Fox News has led me to conclude that the network is not in a position to host a fair and neutral debate for our candidates. Therefore, Fox News will not serve as a media partner for the 2020 Democratic primary debates.”

That decision should have been an easy one from the start. Fox News has not made a secret of it’s prejudices. They spend twenty-four hours a day promoting Trump as the savior of America, shielding him from any and all criticism, and viciously maligning Democrats and others who dare to challenge Trump’s divine right to absolute power.

It’s tempting to invoke analogies about putting foxes in charge of hen houses, but that’s way too easy. It would have to also include hiring Colonel Sanders to run the operation. And if anyone isn’t convinced that Fox News is unfit to produce an impartial and nonpartisan debate program, here are some recent segments that Fox has aired that reveal the extremities of their bias:

  1. Fox News accuses Democrats of advocating infanticide.
  2. Fox News brazenly lies to smear Democrats on a mission of mercy to reduce global poverty.
  3. Sean Hannity of Fox News thinks Americans shouldn’t ever see the Mueller report on Trump.
  4. Trump confirms that Fox News shills are his chief influencers.
  5. Fox News refused to run an ad for an Oscar-nominated anti-Nazi documentary.
  6. Tucker Carlson of Fox News insists that there was ‘no collusion’ between Trump and Russia because there just wasn’t any.
  7. Fox News Fails to see any Russian collusion in Roger Stone’s indictment.
  8. Fox News compares Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Hitler and Stalin in unhinged rant.
  9. Fox News airs Ruth Bader Ginsburg obituary graphic.
  10. Fox News hosts blatantly push him to declare a national emergency over his border wall funding.

Can anyone make a credible case for the network that spews those lies and slander to host a debate by the party they have been unambiguously trying to destroy? Well, Fox News senior vice president Bill Sammon can. He said that:

“We hope the DNC will reconsider its decision to bar Chris Wallace, Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum, all of whom embody the ultimate journalistic integrity and professionalism, from moderating a Democratic presidential debate. They’re the best debate team in the business and they offer candidates an important opportunity to make their case to the largest TV news audience in America, which includes many persuadable voters.”

There is so much in there that is just plain nonsense. To begin with, it’s already been established that “journalistic integrity and professionalism” is nonexistent on Fox News. They do not have “the largest TV news audience in America.” In fact, Rachel Maddow of MSNBC has beaten her competition, Sean Hannity, nearly every night for four straight months. And Fox’s audience is the least persuadable bunch of right-wing cult worshipers in TV land. They are more reliably Republican voters than even members of the GOP. There simply isn’t a significant number of Fox News viewers who will ever vote for a Democrat.

Nevertheless, Fox News still believes that they should get a chance to host a Democratic debate. Despite being a network whose hosts and contributors have universally banded together to disparage special counsel Robert Mueller – an American hero who has devoted his entire life to public service – as a corrupt, conflicted, Stalinist, traitor to America. They remain silent when Trump calls the media “the enemy of the people.” creating an environment that encourages censorship and violence. They have advised Trump to act illegally by ignoring judicial rulings and issuing executive orders that violate the Constitution. And no one on Fox said a word when Trump declared that he knows – and could name – Democrats in Congress who hate America.

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

Does that sound like a network that should be allowed to host a debate by members of the party that they are railing against in the most despicable terms? Obviously Perez came to his senses by nixing Fox as a debate host. And if anyone thinks that it’s discriminatory, just remember that Trump has already nixed the networks that he doesn’t like. While he has give more than forty interviews to Fox News, he has given zero to CNN and MSNBC. And he is supposed to be the president of all the people, not just the GOP/Trump-friendly ones he finds at Fox News. The Democratic Party has no such obligation. And they certainly have no obligation to present themselves to their sworn enemies for an orchestrated political assault.

UPDATE: Naturally Trump weighed in on this via Twitter:

Which is funny, because he actually boycotted a Fox News debate himself. It was because he didn’t like Megyn Kelly who was one of the moderators. Now he’s all verklempt because Democrats don’t want to legitimize a network that does nothing but insult them.

Also, Trump has already done the same thing. He’s given 40+ interviews to Fox and zero to CNN and MSNBC. What’s more, most Americans would love it if he boycotted debates not on Fox. The less of him, the better.