Trump Whines that ‘We Don’t Have Free Speech’ as He Literally Calls for Banning Speech

Saturday night in Des Moines, Iowa, there was yet another coronavirus super-spreader cult rally featuring the twice impeached, former reality TV game show host, and America’s Biggest Loser, Donald Trump. The event lived down to its hype as a couple of ear-bleeding hours of a malignant narcissist complaining that the election he fairly and decisively lost was “stolen” from him.

Donald Trump, Constitution

Among the innumerable absurd laments that excreted from the oral orifice of the blockhead who brags that he is the most fabulous whiner, were some commentaries on the sanctity of the First Amendment. Trump’s yammering (video below) addressed, in particular, free speech, which he claimed there isn’t any more of:

“There is no free speech, we don’t have free speech anymore. You know, it used to be automatic, free speech. We don’t have free speech. We have the opposite of free speech. And this is the beginning of communism when you hear that. This is the beginning of communism.”

In that brief rant Trump uttered the phrase “free speech” five times. Psychiatric professionals say that in some cases “this is because of problems with short-term memory caused by dementia.” Whatever the cause in Trump’s case, it is also a significant departure from reality. First of all, he is asserting that there is no free speech while he is freely speaking to an audience of his cult followers at the Iowa State Fairgrounds.

Trump has never been an especially ardent defender of First Amendment rights. He has relentlessly lambasted the free press as “the enemy of the people.” He has expressed regrets that he didn’t ban Facebook and Twitter when he had the chance. He has threatened that “Something has to be done” about CNN.

However, what makes this latest assault on free speech so preposterous is what he said immediately afterward. In another repetitive rant, Trump vilified critical race theory, a field of study that he has displayed his pitiful ignorance of before. At this rally he harangued that…

“We will ban critical race theory in our classrooms. We will ban that horrible, crazy critical race theory in our military. We will ban it from our workplaces. We will ban it from our federal, state, and local government. It will be banned. Permanently banned. And will never be allowed to come back again.”

Apparently Trump doesn’t like critical race theory. He does not like it in a house. He does not like it with a mouse. He does not like it in a box. He does not like it with a fox (News?).

What Trump does like is the notion of banning free speech with respect to teaching the history of race on America and the impact of systemic racism. And he explicitly expresses his intention, should he have the opportunity, to ban it permanently from every public forum that he could think of.

This should be of concern to every American who values the Constitution and the liberties it protects. If Trump would so openly admit that he would “cancel” the First Amendment, it goes without saying that the would do the same to any other part of the document that he regarded as obstructing his authoritarian aspirations. He’s already trying to subvert the democratic process, with the help of his Republican Party confederates. But he – and they – must never get the chance to carry out their defiling of America’s constitutional republic.

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

Trump-Fluffing Network OAN Loses Appeal of Defamation Lawsuit Against Rachel Maddow

In September of 2019, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow was sued by the network that is America’s most worshipful mouthpiece for Donald Trump and radical right politics, One America News (OAN). The suit charged Maddow with defamation because she accurately reported the network’s association with Russian connected media. From the start it was a meritless case that had no hope of success.

Donald Trump, OAN

OAN’s lawsuit was triggered by a segment on Maddow’s program that revealed that an OAN correspondent, Kristian Rouz, also reported for the Kremlin owned and operated network, Sputnik. Maddow correctly observed that…

“In this case, the most obsequiously pro-Trump right-wing news outlet in America really literally is paid Russian propaganda. Their on-air U.S. politics reporter is paid by the Russian government to produce propaganda for that government.”

In May 2020, the case was thrown out by a U.S. District judge who ruled that “there was no set of facts that could support a claim for defamation based on Maddow’s statement.” In support of that opinion the judge noted that OAN never actually alleged that the facts were defamatory or even that they were in dispute. The ruling affirmed Maddow’s protections under the Constitution’s First Amendment, stating that her commentary consisted of allowable opinion based on truthful and verifiable information.

Now OAN has lost their appeal of that ruling in a federal appeals court. What’s more, OAN has been ordered to pay $250,000 to MSNBC for legal fees. According to the Daily Beast

“Fringe right-wing network One America News lost the appeal of its defamation suit against MSNBC and star host Rachel Maddow on Tuesday, with a panel upholding a previous federal court ruling against OAN that required them to pay $250,000 of the defendants’ legal fees.

“OAN, owned by Herring Networks, initially sued Maddow for $10 million in July 2019 after the MSNBC star said on her show that the Trump-boosting network is “paid Russian propaganda,” calling her remarks ‘malicious and utterly false.'”

Why OAN ever sought to file this suit in the first place is curious. They knew that their “reporter” was a Russian Sputnik stooge. They knew that Maddow merely reported that fact. And considering the torrent of falsehoods that are broadcast on OAN everyday, you would think they they would be hesitant to draw attention to their unsavory relationship with Russian shills.

Furthermore, OAN has been disseminating Russian propaganda in their regular programming by latching on to Trump’s “Big Lie” that the 2020 presidential election was “stolen” from him. That’s precisely the same narrative that Russia uses to undermine faith in American democracy. Their extremism has gone so far as to actually call for the execution of Trump critics.

This failed lawsuit by OAN is not their only legal tribulation. They are also being sued by Dominion voting Systems for defamation in a multibillion dollar case that includes Fox News as a defendant.

OAN is well aware of the legal jeopardy they face, as they demonstrated when they ran a hysterical “disclaimer” prior to a program featuring the MyPillow guy, Mike Lindell, asserting that he had “Absolute Proof” of election fraud. He didn’t. And yet, OAN is still embracing Lindell and Trump and their election lies. This is going to cost them bigly before it’s through.

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How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
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Available now at Amazon.

CNN’s Jim Acosta Fractures Fox News Fascist Fanboy and Trump-Fluffer, Tucker Carlson

This past week Fox News Senior White Nationalist, Tucker Carlson, made a pilgrimage to Hungary to curtsy obediently before its self-proclaimed dictator, Viktor Orban. Carlson displayed his sickly adoration as he performed PR duties for Orban’s oppressive regime. It was a shameful exercise in subservience to a notorious totalitarian strongman.

Fox News, Tucker Carlson, Dictator

On Saturday, CNN’s Jim Acosta reported on Carlson’s trek to the totalitarian dystopia with some poignant clips of Carlson’s commentaries while he was there. Acosta and his guests. Ruth Ben-Ghiat and Oliver Darcy, had some cogent insights, but it was Carlson’s own words that tell the story of his noxious anti-democratic and even anti-American obsessions. The entire video clip of the segment is posted below, but what follows are Carlson’s chilling remarks and pro fascist views.

Acosta introduced the first clip saying that “The Soviet Union used to use gullible foreigners to spread their propaganda, but this seems different. Tucker knows exactly what he’s doing.” And Carlson said that…

“if you care about western civilization and democracy and family, and the ferocious assault on all three of those things by the leaders of our global institutions, you should know what is happening here right now. In the face of great international pressure – they called him all kinds of names, the EU called what he was doing illegal – but he did it anyway. He built a wall. We said to a Hungarian minister who was standing there, ‘It’s hard to believe that that’s your policy. When you come here illegally you’re just escorted out politely?’ And he said quote, ‘We’re a serious country.’ How embarrassing to be an American in a conversation like that.”

Darcy pointed out how outraged Carlson and the rest of right-wing America would be if Michelle Obama, for instance, had gone abroad and told an authoritarian dictator that she was embarrassed to be an American. But Carlson has no problem exhibiting his shame. Nor does he mind portraying Hungary as “democratic,” despite the fact that Orban has effectively assumed total control for life. Acosta then introduces another clip of Carlson praising the state controlled media of Hungary…

“Let’s say you lived in a big American city and you decided to loudly and publicly attack Joe Biden’s policies. His policies on immigration or COVID or transgender athletes. If you kept talking like that you would likely be silenced by Joe Biden’s allies in Silicon Valley. If you kept it up you might very well have to hire armed body guards. That’s common in the U.S. Ask around. But it’s unknown in Hungary. Opposition leaders here don’t worry that they will be hurt for their opinions.”

WTF? Carlson is actually attacking Joe Biden’s policies in these clips. And his confederates on Fox News do so every hour of every day. Not only have they not been silenced, they are the number one rated cable news network. As for the need for Hungarian critics to hire body guards, Carlson is partly correct. There aren’t any government critics who need to do that. But only because there aren’t any government critics allowed. As Ben-Ghiat noted, over 500 media media outlets “donated” their assets to a foundation run by Orban’s allies. There could never be a Fox News taking shots at the government the way they do in the U.S. Carlson is deliberately covering that up. But then he goes off on this fantasy rant…

“‘Oh, but he’s a fascist,’ scream people who are happy to imprison non-violent political protesters in Washington. ‘Oh, there’s no press freedom,’ say people who support the overwhelming censorship in the American media. ‘He’s bad!’ They haven’t accused him rigging elections yet. Maybe that’s too much even for them.”

What Carlson is referring to as political prisoners are the insurrectionists who attacked Congress on January 6th. He regards them as non-violent, despite their having broken through doors and windows, injured more than 100 police officers, and chanted their intentions to kill Nancy Pelosi and hang Mike Pence.

Furthermore, you have to wonder what Carlson is talking about when he says that there is “overwhelming censorship in the American media.” If that were true, he wouldn’t be able to say it on a highly viewed television network. Additionally, Carlson mocks those who point out that Hungary does not have a free press. He might want to refer to the study by Reporters Without Borders as reported by Voice of America

“A press watchdog group, Reporters Without Borders, named 37 world leaders Monday as media ‘predators’ who ‘crack down massively’ on press freedom, including for the first time a Western European leader, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. […] The watchdog group said oligarchs close to Hungary’s ruling Fidesz party controls more than 80% of the media in the country, while private media is discriminated against and characterized as publishing ‘fake news.'”

Acosta closed by saying of Carlson’s Hungarian PR junket that “It’s very concerning. And I wonder where he’s going next. Maybe to Moscow to do an infomercial for Vladimir Putin. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.” Which pretty much says it all. Except that Tucker Carlson is an unpatriotic, anti-American, traitor to his country and no decent network would keep him on the air. Which explains why he’s on Fox News.

NOTE: Twitter suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
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Hannity and Dershowitz Display Their Utter Ignorance and Disrespect for the Constitution

On Wednesday Donald Trump announced that he intends to file a lawsuit against Facebook, Twitter, Google, and their executives for not allowing him to disseminate dangerously inflammatory lies. It’s a laughably pathetic legal stunt populated by a clown show of disreputable attorneys making preposterous arguments.

Fox News Sean Hannity

Trump’s lawsuit has been recognized by most legal experts as a frivolous abuse of the court system that is aimed more at fleecing his cult followers than prevailing in court. But undeterred by rational legal analysis, Fox News jumped eagerly into supporting Trump’s futile legal antics. On Wednesday evening Sean Hannity invited Alan Dershowitz to comment on the litigation. Dershowitz was a member of Trump’s impeachment defense team, so his prejudices and intellectual deficiencies are apparent. However, he was truly skirting the edges of coherence when he engaged in this exchange with Hannity:

Hannity: Seems like a strong case. But obviously nothing is a slam dunk.
Dershowitz: This is the most important First Amendment case of the 21st century, and it’s important because it pits freedom of speech on the one hand against the First Amendment on the other hand. That may sound paradoxical, but remember, it’s the high tech giants that are banning freedom of speech. They are censoring. But they are claiming the right to do so under the First Amendment. So they’re using the First Amendment as a sword against freedom of speech.

First of all, Hannity’s assertion that Trump has a “strong case” is contrary to reality. Not only does the case fail on legal grounds, it was filed in in the wrong jurisdiction – Florida rather than California – and may be dismissed on that alone. That’s just more proof that this is a charade for profit and that Trump and his lawyers don’t have any real intention of winning.

As for Dershowitz, he is making it hard to believe that he was ever regarded as a constitutional scholar. He began his remarks by portraying the case as “the most important First Amendment case of the 21st century,” when it isn’t actually a First Amendment case at all. For it to be a First Amendment case there would have to be government involvement in suppression of free speech. But Trump’s targets are all private companies. Trump’s lawyers are trying to claim that the social media companies are “government actors,” but that’s an imaginary label with no legal validity.

Where Dershowitz goes off the rails entirely is the nonsense that the “high tech giants” are claiming First Amendment protection to censor Trump. They are not. They have never asserted a First Amendment protection because they aren’t being suppressed by the government. What’s more, they have every right to monitor what appears on their websites. By Dershowitz’s standards, I should be able to force Fox News to give me airtime every night.

Furthermore, they are not “banning freedom of speech.” Trump, as he has said himself, has many opportunities to express himself, some of which he has claimed are superior to the companies he’s suing. “I’m really getting the big word out,” Trump bragged, “because we’re doing releases. And every time I do a release it’s all over the place. It’s more elegant than Twitter.”

Once again, Trump opens his big mouth and undermines his own arguments. In fact, his “releases” are actually undermining the entire premise of his lawsuit. Every time he makes incendiary statements about how the Radical Left Democrats will “further DESTROY our Country,” and that the 2020 presidential election was disgraceful and corrupt and “RIGGED and STOLEN,” he’s affirming the decisions by the social media platforms to remove his violence inciting account. So the more he keeps talking, the better. (Geez, I never thought I’d say that).

And meanwhile…

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How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
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Crybaby Trump Files Asinine ‘1st Amendment’ Lawsuit Against Twitter, Facebook, and Google

Last week Trump’s spokes shill tweeted that Trump would “make a huge announcement” on Wednesday, July 7, 2021. That day has come and the announcement is living down to the expectations that most people have for the one-term, twice-impeached, former reality TV game show host who is indisputably America’s biggest loser.

Donald Trump, Constitution

From his Bedminster, New Jersey golf resort, Trump delivered a nearly hour long address to reveal his intention to file a lawsuit against “Big Tech” companies, Twitter, Facebook, and Google. Make no mistake, this alleged litigation (there is no evidence yet that it’s been filed) is driven purely by Trump’s voracious ego and thirst for revenge.

After having his accounts on social media suspended for blatant violations of their terms of service, Trump is proposing to exploit the courts to punish the private companies who took responsible actions to stem his inflammatory rhetoric. He already incited a deadly insurrection in Washington, D.C., on January 6th, and he is continuing his bellicose “Big Lie” rants that drove his glassy-eyed disciples to riot and storm the Capitol.

Trump’s tedious dissertation on his pending lawsuit was filled with bizarre and legally preposterous assertions. He starts off describing this suit as the beginning of a much bigger initiative. “We will take this battle,” he promises, “to state legislatures, to Congress, and to the ballot box.” But the whole premise of the action is ludicrous. Trump thinks that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (which protects free speech) makes social media liable as “government actors” and subject to First Amendment prohibitions against censorship:

“Once they got Section 230 they’re no longer private companies anymore in a lot of views. […] These companies have been coopted, coerced and weaponized by government and by government actors to become the enforcers of illegal, unconstitutional censorship.

Not only is Trump’s interpretation of Section 230 completely off, he is articulating a paranoid, crackpot conspiracy theory that social media companies are in cahoots with the feds to silence him. Like his unhinged raving about election fraud, there is no evidence of these allegations either. But that doesn’t stop him from spouting off incoherently (video below) Some excerpts follow:

“Today, in conjunction with the America First Policy Institute, I’m filing as the lead class representative a major class action lawsuit against the big tech giants, including Facebook, Google, and Twitter, as well as their CEOs Mark Zuckerberg, Sundar Pichai, and Jack Dorsey. Three real nice guys. We’re asking the district court for the Southern District of Florida to order an immediate halt to social media companies’ illegal, shameful censorship of the American people. And that’s exactly what they’re doing.

We’re demanding an end to the shadow-banning, a stop to the silencing, a stop to the blacklisting, banishing, and canceling that you know so well. Our case will prove this censorship is unlawful, it’s unconstitutional, and it’s completely un-American. We all know that. We know that very, very well. Our lawsuit also seeks injunctive relief to allow prompt restitution.”

Trump didn’t cite a single legal principle to support his claims. That’s because he can’t. The Constitution’s First Amendment prohibits government censorship. Hence the wording that “Congress shall make no law […] abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.” Trump actually undermines his case by bragging about all the avenues of speech he has available to him that he insists are successful (they aren’t).

“We’re in a fight, we’re in a fight that we’re going to win. So many people have said to me, ‘Please sir, do something about big tech. Sue them, sir. Sue them.’ And they’ve been saying it to me for a long time. But there has never been a better time to do it. Polling released by Scott Rasmussen, highly respected, shows that nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that big tech companies should be required to abide by the First Amendment guarantee of free speech.”

Trump always has a “sir” story wherein some beleaguered soul begs him to do something that really only benefits Trump. And his reliance on the notoriously disreputable Rasmussen for polling data doesn’t advance his legal interests. Even reputable polls are not legal arguments. Cases are decided by statute and precedent, not popularity.

“Social Media has given extraordinary power to a group of Big Tech Giants that are working with government, the mainstream media, and a large segment of a political party to silence and suppress the views of the American people. And they’ve been very, very successful at that. Not in all cases, but in many cases totally successful.”

This is more conspiracy mongering that now includes a cabal comprised of the government, tech companies, the media, and Democrats. If you ask him, Trump would probably add academia, banking, the judiciary, liberal churches, and the Girl Scouts of America.

Following his prepared, TelePrompTer remarks, Trump took questions from what was obviously an exclusive club of ultra-conservative media. Every question was framed positively for Trump, or prefaced with adoring commentary. That’s just more proof that Trump can’t be taken seriously that he cares about a free press. Which, you recall, he has repeatedly maligned in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the People.”

It’s impossible to set aside Trump’s flaming hypocrisy in all of this. After all, he’s the first one to “cancel” anyone who dares to contradict him. He is the undisputed King of Cancel Culture. He has called for dozens of boycotts of American companies. He even expressed his regret that he didn’t ban Facebook and Twitter when he mistakenly thought he could have as president. And now his buddy, Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida, is pushing a state law that would make it illegal for private companies to monitor their own website comments.

It’s from that perch of police state prohibition that Trump is heralding his campaign for free speech. So not only is Trump on swampy ground legally, he’s up to both of his chins in hypocrisy. This lawsuit, if it is ever actually filed, is going nowhere in hurry, according to most legal experts.

However, let’s hope that this suit isn’t dismissed before the defendants can conduct discovery. There is a wealth of information that can be acquired regarding Trump’s activities prior to, and during the insurrection, his relationships with right-wing media (Fox News, Newsmax, OAN, etc.), and efforts to unlawfully damage the commercial interests of private companies against whom he holds grudges. That should be fun.

UPDATE: It’s All About the Grift! David Corn of Mother Jones spells out the latest con.

“In typical Trumpian fashion, the cases were amateurishly cobbled together, with arguments and contentions that legal experts immediately derided. […] Trump has a long history of both threatening suits that never materialize and filing bogus cases that go nowhere.” […]

“Other than ginning up the Big Lie believers, there is another strong reason for Trump to proceed with this case: money. Lots of money. No sooner had Trump’s lawyers filed when his grift-machine kicked into action. A text message was sent to Trump supporters hitting them up for donations. “President Trump is filing a LAWSUIT against Facebook and Twitter for UNFAIR CENSORSHIP!” it proclaimed.”

NOTE: Twitter suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

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

GOP Bill Would Force Twitter to Allow Trump’s Inflammatory Lies and Disinformation

The Republican Party has been engaging in a full court press to cripple democracy across the country. They tried to obstruct and/or overturn the 2020 presidential election (and Trump is still doing so). They passed bills aimed at suppressing and disenfranchising voters, particularly those of people of color. They are disseminating the racist “white replacement theory” to frighten their base that “others” are conspiring to replace them in the electorate.

Donald Trump, Toilet, Bathrobe

Now they are upping the ante by advocating trashing the Constitution in order to impose totalitarian control over social media companies who fail to comply with their demands. NBC News is reporting that…

“Florida is on track to be the first state in the nation to punish social media companies that ban politicians like former President Donald Trump under a bill approved Thursday by the state’s Republican-led Legislature. […] the proposal appears destined to be challenged in court after a tech industry trade group called it a violation of the First Amendment speech rights of corporations.”

Let’s be clear about this. Florida Republicans are seeking to force private companies to bend to their partisan political will. Social media services like Twitter and Facebook took the extraordinary step of suspending the accounts of Donald Trump after his reckless and dishonest posts led to deadly riots in Washington, D.C. by insurrections for whom he professed his love. The sole purpose of the new law is to placate Trump and make it easier for him to advance his self-serving, anti-democratic crusade. The article went on to note that “Republicans have called social media bans unfair censorship,” and that…

“The Florida bill would prohibit social media companies from knowingly ‘deplatforming’ political candidates, meaning a service could not ‘permanently delete or ban’ a candidate. Suspensions of up to 14 days would still be allowed, and a service could remove individual posts that violate its terms of service.

“The state’s elections commission would be empowered to fine a social media company $250,000 a day for statewide candidates and $25,000 a day for other candidates if a company’s actions are found to violate the law.”

The state has absolutely no legal authority to force private companies to provide a platform for any individual. The constitutional protection against censorship applies only to the government. But Florida’s Republicans argue that the wide influence of social media is cause for increased regulation. If that’s true, then shouldn’t the same principle apply to television and newspapers that also enjoy wide influence? By that standard, shouldn’t Fox News be forced to carry my stories and opinions, and be fined if they refuse?

Republicans used to believe in something called a “free market.” They insisted that business should be free of government intervention and that the marketplace should decide the winners. Trump even made that argument recently when he predicted that Twitter and Facebook would fail without him and he floated a proposal to start his own social media company.

That’s competition. And while Trump’s alt-Twitter would likely suffer a humiliating defeat, at least it would be decided in the free market. Florida’s bill upends all of that and puts the boot of autocracy on businesses that they regard as disobedient. Which is further proof that Republicans are flaming hypocrites who will discard any and all principles when they don’t adhere to their advantage.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

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

Joe Biden Ends Trump’s War on Truth and the Free Press – and Zings Fox News

The not-so-old adage that “elections have consequences” has proven once again to be an insightful admonition to those who would defy democracy and the indefatigable will of the American people. Donald Trump found this out the hard way by narrowing his appeal to an impotent minority of racists and far-right extremists, rather than seeking to broaden his base by reaching out to the reality-based community.

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Donald Trump, Fox News, White House

Among the consequences that Trump will suffer, in addition to his humiliating electoral defeat, are a rapid undoing of his worst policy initiatives (i.e. climate change, immigration, healthcare, etc.), the expulsion of his most despicable appointees throughout his administration (i.e. Justice, Defense, Intelligence, EPA, etc.), and an avalanche of of both criminal and civil lawsuits (tax/financial, sexual harassment/assault, defamation, etc.). Trump may have less time available for golf and television as a private citizen than he did as the alleged “president.”

Joe Biden’s inauguration speech was surprisingly well received considering his reputation for something less than soaring oratory. Even Chris Wallace of Fox News said that it was “the best inaugural address I ever heard.” But don’t let that fool you into thinking that Fox News has turned over new leaf. Sean Hannity watched the same address and described our new president as “the weak, the frail, the cognitively struggling Biden.” Clearly Hannity was viewing it through his manure-caked eyeglasses.

While Biden touched an many subjects of great importance to the American people (i.e. the COVID-19 pandemic, the economy, international relations, and his commitment to national unity), he included some specific passages that foretold a renewed respect for the free press. Gone is Trump’s Stalinist yowl that “the media is the enemy of the people.” In Biden’s inaugural address he correctly observed that “We face an attack on democracy and on truth.” Then he pointedly made these profound remarks:

“Politics need not be a raging fire destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn’t have to be a cause for total war. And, we must reject a culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured.”

“Manipulated” and “manufactured” facts are another way of saying “alternative” facts (h/t Kellyanne Conway). It’s also a nod to what Fox news has done throughout Trump’s occupation of the White House.

“There is truth and there are lies. Lies told for power and for profit. And each of us has a duty and responsibility, as citizens, as Americans, and especially as leaders – leaders who have pledged to honor our Constitution and protect our nation – to defend the truth and to defeat the lies.”

This is another shout out to Trump’s Ministry of Propaganda (aka Fox News), where “Lies told for power and for profit” is embedded in their corporate mission statement.

“But the answer is not to turn inward, to retreat into competing factions, distrusting those who don’t look like you do, or worship the way you do, or don’t get their news from the same sources you do.”

Here Biden is being generous by lumping Fox News in with legitimate sources of news. Even Fox doesn’t call what they do “news.” It is literally a part of their entertainment division. And it isn’t going to get any better in the post-Trump era. They have already announced programming changes that shift more airtime to their ultra-conservative opinion hosts.

For his part, Joe Biden is making good on his promise to restore truth and decency to the White House press corps and its relationship with the media. Early on in his term Trump abandoned daily press briefings. He went weeks without holding any. And when he did, they were filled with lies and self-serving blather. His press secretaries were a confederacy of dishonest spinners (Sean Spicer, Sarah Huckabee-Sanders, Kayleigh McEnany) whose flair for flagrant falsehoods was famous.

Biden’s press secretary, Jen Psaki, held her first press briefing on Inauguration Day. She told reporters that her goal was to “bring transparency and truth back to the American government.” Elaborating, she said that…

“I have deep respect for a free and independent press in our democracy and for the role that all of you play. As I noted earlier, there will be moments when we disagree and there will certainly be days we disagree for extensive parts of the briefing even perhaps. But we have a common goal, which is sharing accurate information with the American people.”

That’s a refreshing upgrade from the bellicose bundle of belligerence that stained Trump’s hostile and childish tantrum throwing tirades whenever he engaged the press. It’s a return to the more productive encounters that provide opportunities for political leaders to communicate with the public, while simultaneously allowing journalists to confront those leaders on the public’s behalf. And if both the President and the press pursue those as their goals, the nation can only be better off for it.

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

Study Proves that Banishing Trump From Twitter Improved the Internet 73%

On January 8th, two days after the Donald Trump Insurrectionists assaulted Congress, Twitter finally suspended his account. It was a long overdue action to prevent him from inciting further violence and disseminating ever more preposterous and self-serving lies. Unfortunately, it came after five deaths and the desecration of America’s seat of democracy.

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Donald Trump, Twitter

Trump got away with exploiting social media for years, where he recklessly radicalized an intellectually challenged and emotionally vulnerable confederacy of conspiracy crackpots. He deftly manipulated them to serve his own brazenly selfish and nefarious purposes. It culminated in the riots in Washington that Trump’s deliberately inflammatory rhetoric triggered.

However, that is not the end of the story. Trump will surely continue to advance his egomaniacal aspirations. And he will be aided and abetted by Fox News. On Saturday evening, Fox’s Senior Trump-Fluffer, “Judge” Jeannine Pirro, hosted the Republican’s leading propagator of political cowplop, Jim Jordan. This excerpt from their discussion is illustrative of the deranged mindset on the right:

Pirro: To limit those who are Republicans, to literally get them off the Internet, Facebook and Twitter. I mean there is basically, not just a removal of free speech, but it is a removal of our freedom.
Jordan: Yeah. This cancel culture is dangerous. It’s the most dangerous thing going

That’s right. Removing Trump from Twitter is “the most dangerous thing going.” Clearly more dangerous than the deadly rioters that Trump incited with his incendiary and delusional tweets about election fraud. And far more dangerous than the coronavirus that Trump downplayed and allowed to spread unchecked, killing 400,000 Americans.

Fox News would never engage in that sort of “cancel culture.” Well, except that they have totally refused to give me any airtime to reveal how dishonest and dangerous they are. I mean, what’s up with that? They are removing, not just my right to free speech, but my freedom.

And it’s not like Trump deserves this online suppression. Has he ever “cancelled” anyone? Well, you know, other than cancelling Fox News whenever they have been less than unconditionally adoring or insufficiently flattering for his elephantine ego. If Fox ever permits a Trump critic to speak – even if just momentarily so they can prepare an attack – Trump immediately whines that Fox News is dead and insists that everyone stop watching and switch to even more worshipful channels like OANN or Newsmax.

What Jordan, Pirro, and Fox News continue to fail to understand is that the free speech protections in the Constitution only prohibit government censorship. Twitter is a private company with stated rules that users must comply with. They include refraining from advocating violence and disseminating falsehoods that could result in harm. Trump violated those rules regularly.

The evidence of the harm Trump caused was recently documented in a study that found that after Twitter banned Trump, “online misinformation about election fraud plunged 73 percent.” That’s a pretty revealing statistic that attests to the hypnotic influence Trump has on his cult disciples. It isn’t just an accounting of his Twitter activity, but the combined effect of the retweets and other regurgitation on the part of Trump’s followers.

The fact that Trump’s absence from Twitter and Facebook can have this profound an impact on the disinformation that circulates online is justification for removing him and any other party that seeks to mislead the public in ways that produce violence and tangible trauma to society at large. And that being the case, how about we do Fox News next?

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. And you can follow this surrogate Twitter account here. Thanks for your support.

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

Trump’s Final, Furious, Flabbergasted, Frothing, Frantic Tweet Annotated

Well, it took four years, but Twitter finally recognized that Donald Trump is a risk to the Constitution’s promise to “establish Justice, [and] insure domestic Tranquility.” It took Trump’s cheerleading of lawless insurrectionists in Washington, D.C., to get Twitter to act. But now Trump has been set adrift to languish in the obscurity of … oh wait. He still has Fox News and a plethora of other right-wing platforms to disseminate his lies and his appeals to terrorists that comprise his cult following.

Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram.

Donald Trump, Toilet, Bathrobe

After Twitter shut down Trump’s account, he behaved like a cranky toddler who was determined cause a scene in the checkout line at Walmart. He barricaded himself in his bunker, watching Fox News and spitting out what become the last of his twantrums. He tried to continue posting his irate blather on the official White House Twitter account, but those tweets were quickly removed. However, there is some usefulness in observing just how deeply demented Trump has become, and it’s evident in those final tweets. What follows is an annotated version of Trump’s foaming anxiety and ire:

“As I have been saying for a long time, Twitter has gone further and further in banning free speech…”
Trump has been saying for a long time that every media outlet was hell-bent on quashing free speech. But in reality, he was only referring to any incident where private companies prevented him from flinging verbal feces, which they have a right and responsibility to do. And he apparently doesn’t know that, in constitutional terms, free speech only applies to government prohibition of speech.

“…and tonight, Twitter employees have coordinated with the Democrats and the Radical Left in removing my account from their platform…”
As usual, Trump has no more evidence for his assertion that Twitter coordinated with Democrats or anyone else, than he does of the election fraud he’s been whining about for months. What’s more, Twitter is notorious for their toleration of radical right-wingers who advocate violence and threaten their enemies.

“…to silence me — and YOU, the 75,000,000 great patriots who voted for me.”
Twitter is only “silencing” Trump if you believe that he has no other outlet for his rabid rants. And while he likes to pretend that any offense to him is an attack on all of his cult disciples, that is patently false. They are still able to tweet and whine and regurgitate his belligerent BS.

“…Twitter may be a private company, but without the government’s gift of Section 230 they would not exist for long. I predicted this would happen.”
Trump still has no idea what “Section 230” is or does. It is simply a rule that indemnifies any business that permits online comments from lawsuits for what their users post. Without that protection, the potential liabilities would demand that all such commentary be shut down. It would, in fact, diminish free speech.

“We have been negotiating with various other sites, and will have a big announcement soon, while we also look at the possibilities of building out our own platform in the near future.”
Don’t hold your breath. Whenever Trump says he’ll have a “big announcement” soon it never seems to come to pass. We’re still waiting for his healthcare plan that he said would be revealed in two weeks for the past four years. And any platform of his own would likely just be his next humiliating failure and bankruptcy

“We will not be SILENCED! Twitter is not about FREE SPEECH. They are all about promoting a Radical Left platform where some of the most vicious people in the world are allowed to speak freely…”
Once again, when Trump says “WE,” he means “ME.” But he’s right that Twitter is not about free speech. It’s a forum for comments that must follow the terms and regulations that Twitter requires every user to agree to. But Trump refuses to follow the rules. He expects special treatment for his own viciousness, then whines petulantly when he doesn’t get it.

“…STAY TUNED!”
Don’t bother. Unless you’re a glutton for relentless griping, egomaniacal self-promotion, and sniveling lies.

This is actually a fantastic way for Trump go out. His Twitter finale could not be more appropriate. It includes all of the top psychotic raves that Trump is known for. And it is a fitting flourish with which to cap his legacy of lies, hostility, conceit, and ignorance.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. And you can follow my alternate Twitter account here. Thanks for your support.

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.