HUH? Kellyanne Conway Asks the Press ‘Why is Everybody So Obsessed with the President?’

The key surrogates in Donald Trump’s administration are a notorious confederacy of liars and knee-jerk defenders of the indefensible. People like press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and the White House communications office turned obfuscation and deflection into an art form. As result, it is almost impossible to get a straight or truthful answer from this administration on any subject of importance.

Kellyanne Conway

However, they hit a new low with what may be one of the dumbest questions ever asked by a presidential spokesperson. Kellyanne Conway stopped to respond to a few questions from the press gaggle at the White House on Friday morning. Referring to the dictator-style revocation of CIA Director John Brennan’s security clearance, a reporter asked Conway as she walked away if Trump was “politically targeting his enemies.” That, of course, goes without saying. It’s something he has always done and no one could credibly deny it.

So naturally, Conway turns around and returns to the media scrum to deny it (video below). She began by saying that Brennan is a cable news pundit now who has “no interest in furthering the national security interests of this country.” That’s an absurd charge to make against someone who has spent his whole life in public service and particularly national security. She then complained about Brennan’s assertion that Trump did collude with Russia, saying that he should have told that to Congress when he testified before them. She added “It’s a great question. You oughta noodle it.” Really?

Conway, though, is ignoring two obvious noodlings that could explain it for her. First of all, much of Brennan’s testimony was in closed session and may very well have raised alarms about Trump’s nefarious associations with Russia. That cannot be made public. Secondly, there has been a lot of information uncovered since his congressional testimony more than a year ago that provides additional evidence of Trump’s guilt. Brennan’s conclusion that Trump did indeed conspire with Russian operatives to advance his candidacy is one that is shared by many in the intelligence community.

But when it comes to stupid questions, Conway offered one of the worst in replying to further questions by the press corps:

“Why is everybody so obsessed with the President of the United States that they can’t even begin or finish a sentence without mentioning his name five times. It’s kind of weird. And it’s infecting people on the news now who fancy themselves security experts.”

So Conway just asked a bunch of White House correspondents why they ask so many questions about the person it is their job to ask questions about. Weird. It’s like complaining about a waiter who keeps asking people what they’d like to order. What’s more, no one is has a greater obsession with the President than Donald Trump. He takes every opportunity to make sure that his name and face are plastered across all the media and that the nation’s attention is always focused on him.

So would Conway prefer that the press didn’t pay as much attention to him as they currently do? That would drive him even crazier. And it would surely be a disservice to the American people who rely on the press to keep them informed. But Conway’s question reflects the adversarial position that the Trump administration has with the First Amendment. They would love to deny the media – and the people – the critical information needed to sustain a free democracy. But then a free democracy is not what the wannabe dictator Trump wants.

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

Trump Suffers Brutal Senate Rebuke for Attacking the Free Press as ‘the Enemy of the People’

On Thursday there was a coordinated effort on the part of more than 350 independent newspapers to strike back at Donald Trump’s relentless and dangerous assault on the media. And it’s about time. As noted by one of the organizers, the Boston Globe, “This whole project is not anti-Trump. It’s really pro-press.”

Donald Trump

Naturally, Trump took time from his golf game to post tweets (three actually) criticising this overdue measure of self-defense and support for the First Amendment. Once again he demeaned the press by calling them the “opposition party.” Actually, that’s true. They are opposed to much of what Trump stands for: lying, corruption, racism, misogyny, and treason. And Trump’s GOP is defending all of those traits in this perverted White House.

Also on Thursday, the Senate passed by unanimous voice vote a resolution offered by Sens. Brian Schatz and Chuck Schumer. The resolution is focused directly at “affirming Congress’ support of the First Amendment and condemning attacks on the free press, which undermine the credibility of journalists and the press as a national institution.” What follows are some of the more pertinent passages from the text of the resolution:

Whereas the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States protects the press from government control and suppression;

Whereas the freedom of the press—

  1. has been recognized as integral to the democratic foundations of the United States since the beginning of the United States; and< /li>
  2. has endured and been reaffirmed repeatedly throughout the history of the United States;

[…]

Whereas tyrannical and authoritarian governments and leaders throughout history have sought to undermine, censor, suppress, and control the press to advance their undemocratic goals and actions; and

Whereas the United States, including its long-held commitment to and constitutional protection of the free press, has stood as a shining example of democracy, self-government, and freedom for the world to emulate: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, that:

The Senate –

  • affirms that the press is not the enemy of the people;
  • reaffirms the vital and indispensable role the free press serves to inform the electorate, uncover the truth, act as a check on the inherent power of the government, further national discourse and debate, and otherwise advance our most basic and cherished democratic norms and freedoms; and
  • condemns attacks on the institution of the free press and views efforts to systematically undermine the credibility of the press as a whole as an attack on our democratic institutions.

It is the sense of the Senate that it is the sworn responsibility of all who serve the United States by taking the oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States to uphold, cherish, and protect the entire Constitution, including the freedom of the press.

The fact that a resolution like this even needs to be brought up is a sad statement on the status of the United States government, and particularly the White House under Donald Trump. And its language is unambiguously aimed at Trump himself with the inclusion of the affirmation that “the press is not the enemy of the people.” Moreover, having been passed without any objections in a body controlled by Republicans is an indication that the GOP may finally be sick and tired of some of Trump’s overtly un-American tendencies.

Now if only they would see fit to challenge the President on matters like his punitive and intimidating revocation of security clearances for former intelligence officials; his assaults on the Justice Department and those conducting investigations on him; his reliance on Fox News instead of experienced national security professionals; and his predilection for lying and resorting to infantile name-calling.

And maybe, just maybe, the Congress might hold actual hearings to get to the bottom of his conspiracies with Russia and obstruction of justice. It’s their sworn duty to act as a check and balance, to hold the President accountable for misdeeds, and to offer solutions that will prevent similar problems in the future with rogue leaders and foreign attacks on America’s democracy. Is that asking too much?

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

POLL: Trump’s GOP Favors Giving Fascist Authority to the President to Shut Down Critical Media

The disintegration of American democracy continues as the Republican Party under Donald Trump embraces the politics of totalitarian dictatorships. It’s consistent with their worshipful supplication to everything that Trump does and says. Any dissent is regarded as betrayal and party members are held to strict oaths of unbending loyalty.

Donald Trump Republican, GOP

In addition to rallying behind Trump’s Stalinist rant that the media is “the enemy of the American people,” a new Ipsos poll shows that a plurality of Republicans (43%) believe that he should be able to shut down any media company that he deems is behaving badly. Can you guess which ones those would be? According to Ipsos:

“Some of the limits of public support for freedom of the press are made stark with a quarter of Americans (26%) saying they agree ‘the president should have the authority to close news outlets engaged in bad behavior,’ including a plurality of Republicans (43%). Likewise, most Americans (72%) think ‘it should be easier to sue reporters who knowingly publish false information.”

For the record, anyone can already sue a reporter or news outlet that knowingly publishes false information. The problem that Trump and his cult following have is when reporters publish truthful and fact-checked information that exposes their lies and the damage they are doing to the country. Their attacks on the press are not intended to produce either fairness or balance. They are intended to intimidate journalists and to poison the minds of the Deplorables so that they trust no other source than Dear Leader.

This strategy is also seen in Trump’s determined efforts to threaten reporters with banishment from White House events and the revocation of their licenses. And his relentless castigation of the media as “sleazy,” “disgraceful,” “horrendous”, “liars,” is bound to lead to violence. Meanwhile, his communications office has made the daily press briefings irrelevant. For one thing, they are hardly daily. There were five briefings in June and only three in July. And when they are held the press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, spends most the time evading questions, haranguing reporters, and exalting Trump.

The good news is that, despite the worst efforts of Trump and the GOP to denigrate the press, the American people consistently say that they trust the media more than they trust the President. Perhaps the fact that Trump is the most documented pathological liar that’s ever occupied the White House has something to do with that opinion.

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

Trump is Threatening to Punish Former Obama Officials for Exercising Their Free Speech Rights

The president who has been the most hostile to the First Amendment of any president in history is accelerating his attack on the Constitution. Donald Trump’s latest threats toward his critics should frighten all Americans, not just those unlucky enough to be in his crosshairs at the moment. And he’s doing it for the most flagrantly political reasons.

Donald Trump Censorship

At the White House press briefing Monday morning (only the third one in July so far), Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded to a question about Sen. Rand Paul’s request that Trump revoke the security credentials of former CIA director, John Brennan. Paul alleged, without proof, that Brennan was “monetizing his security clearance” and “divulging secrets to the mainstream media.” Sanders replied with a prepared statement that went even further (video below):

“Not only is the president looking to take away Brennan’s security clearance, he’s also looking into the security clearances of Comey, Clapper, Rice, Hayden, and McCabe.”

Note that these all are national security professionals who served at least part of their tenures in the Obama administration. Note also that they have been outspoken critics of the President. There has been no discussion of revoking security clearances for Sean Spicer, Rex Tillerson, or Reince Priebus (if they ever had any). Sanders continued reading her statement:

“The President is exploring the mechanisms to remove security clearance because they politicized, and in some cases monetized, their public service and in some cases security clearance making baseless accusations of improper contact with Russia, or being influenced by Russia against the President is extremely inappropriate. And the fact that people with security clearances are making the baseless charges provides inappropriate legitimacy to accusations with zero evidence.”

No one has politicized and monetized their public service more than Donald Trump. He uses his Twitter account to post brazenly partisan political messages including defenses of his collusion with Russia and obstruction of justice. Furthermore, he posts his robo-endorsements of Republican candidates for Congress. He also promotes his visits to his golf resorts and other properties he owns where he profits from both government expenditures and private reservations from corporations and foreign dignitaries seeking to influence American policies.

The activities of the people Trump is threatening are standard expressions of opinion in the media by experts with the experience to comment intelligently. They are granted the right to have and express their opinions by the Constitution. And by having done so, they have now become the targets of Trump’s infantile and un-American wrath. It should be noted that in no case have any of these people disclosed any confidential information. The assertion that what they have said is “false” is just the unsupported opinion of Trump and his lackeys. But it wouldn’t matter if it is false. There is no prohibition on expressing a false opinion. If there were Fox News would be out of business. And Trump as well, for that matter.

Trump’s rabid aversion to free speech is well established. He repeatedly refers to the media in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people.” And just this morning he rattled off a couple of tweets castigating the Washington Post for some peculiar and unexplained anti-trust violations. In fact, he’s only attacking them because he perceives them as critics. Which makes the assault an unambiguous breach of the First Amendment.

If Trump follows through on these threats, it would be an obvious attempt to silence his critics. And it would only add to the high crimes and misdemeanors that he is already guilty of, and that warrant his immediate impeachment and removal from office. As if his treasonous collusion with Russia, his obstruction of justice, his financial corruption, and his sexually predatory assaults on women weren’t enough.

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

The Sunday Morning Trump (Not So) Funnies: Donald Trump’s Senile Dementia Kicked in Bigly

This weekend Donald Trump massively accelerated the level of nonsense that has been the hallmark of his presidency. Among the cognitive lapses he displayed while embarrassing America in Europe were his defensive response to the indictment of twelve Russians for interfering with the 2016 presidential election, and his anti-First Amendment rebuke of the the “fake news” network CNN in favor of the “real” network, Fox News. But he was just getting started.

Donald Trump

There were several instances of acute mental confusion that Trump exhibited this weekend. But let’s begin with the most disturbing one, even though it may not be the most substantive. In an interview with British Trump-fluffer Piers Morgan, the President was asked “What is the incentive for America to do a great deal with the United Kingdom?” And this was Trump’s – – – answer?

“We would make a great deal with the United Kingdom because they have product that we like. I mean they have a lot of great product. They make phenomenal things, you know, and you have different names — you can say ‘England’, you can say ‘UK’, you can say ‘United Kingdom’ so many different — you know you have, you have so many different names – Great Britain. I always say: ‘Which one do you prefer? Great Britain?’ You understand what I’m saying?”

No. Nobody understands a single thing that you’re saying. But that’s only because you aren’t saying anything that is remotely intelligible. But other than that, it’s perfectly clear.

From there we go on to an interview Trump gave to CBS anchor Jeff Glor. Trump made several bits of “news” in this brief dialog. Like when he said that his father was born in the EU (Germany). Except that his father was born in New York. Trump will literally lie about anything. There are no limits to the outright absurdity of his frightening foolishness. For example:

GLOR: “What’s your goal from the Putin meeting?”
TRUMP: “I’ll let you know after the meeting.”

Well, that’s comforting. It shows how seriously Trump is taking this summit with the dictator of the nation that is occupying Crimea, helping Iran in Syria, and that attacked America’s democracy. And then there’s this:

GLOR: “The Russians who were indicted. Would you ask Putin to send them here?”
TRUMP: “Well I might. I hadn’t thought of that. But again — this was during the Obama administration.”

He hadn’t thought of the most obvious response to a historic indictment of a foreign nation’s criminal cyberwar against the United States? What the hell is he thinking of? Pee-pee tapes? And even after being given the idea, Trump still only says that he “might” bring it up. Then he goes on to blame President Obama for the whole mess. It may have happened DURING the Obama administration, but it was being done FOR (and with?) the Trump campaign. And then there’s this:

TRUMP: “I think the DNC should be ashamed of themselves for allowing themselves to be hacked. They had bad defenses and they were able to be hacked. But I heard they were trying to hack the Republicans too, but — and this may be wrong — but they had much stronger defenses.”

So now the DNC is responsible for Putin’s hacking of Democrats on behalf of Donald Trump. Classic “blaming the victim.” And Trump has the audacity to make this allegation even while admitting that “this may be wrong.” What sober-minded world leader would say things publicly that he doesn’t know are true? BTW, according to the Justice Department, the GOP was hacked, so their defenses were no better than the DNC. But Russia was only using hacked info against the Democrats. Whatever they hacked from Republicans is probably being used to blackmail Trump. And then there’s this:

GLOR: “Who is your biggest competitor? Your biggest foe globally right now?”
TRUMP: “Well I think we have a lot of foes. I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now you wouldn’t think of the European Union but they’re a foe.”

Indeed, we do have a lot of foes. Especially many of our former allies since Trump took office. But the first one he thinks of to mention is the European Union? Certainly not China, or North Korea, or Iran. And as for Russia, last week Trump referred to Putin only as a competitor, saying explicitly that he was “not my enemy.” Trump even went out of his way to congratulate Russia on Twitter Sunday morning. But the EU is a foe? And then there’s this:

TRUMP (On UK protests): “There are many, many protests in my favor.”

Um OK.

Following the Putin/Trump performance review on Monday, Trump is now scheduled for a lavish tongue bathing by Fox News shills Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson. Because who else would he turn to? And Vladimir Putin will also be visiting Fox News for an interview with Chris Wallace. So it’s an all-Fox, All Russia, all Trump festival of flagrant propaganda. I can hardly wait.

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

Trump Says ‘I Don’t Take Questions From CNN,’ Only Real Networks Like – Fox News?

Donald Trump was visiting with the British Prime Minister Theresa May in London on Friday when he obliged the media by taking a few question to which he would respond with his customary obfuscation and lies. But in the process he employed one of his familiar tactics of demeaning the press even as he pretends to be accommodating them.

Donald Trump Fox News

Just as Jim Acosta of CNN began to ask a question, Trump interrupted him him saying “No.” and pointing to John Roberts of Fox News. Acosta was not immediately convinced that his opportunity to question the President was over. But Trump made it even more clear saying “CNN is fake news, I don’t take questions from CNN. John Roberts of Fox, let’s go to a real network.”

Roberts had an opportunity to stand up for the integrity and honor of his profession. But instead, he chose to ignore Trump’s malice toward the press and ask if Trump hopes to have a better relationship with Vladimir Putin. That question was a fairly obsequious waste of time that would provide no insight to any current affairs. However, it did successfully help Trump to throw another sucker punch at the media that he despises. And at the same time Trump got to promote the one network that has so obediently acted as his State TV affiliate of the White House.

By maligning the media this way on foreign soil, Trump is ensuring that other foreign dictators will feel encouraged to continue their own crusades against the press, which often include suppression and murder. Trump’s friend Vladimir can attest to that. It’s bad enough when Trump calls the media “the enemy of the American people” during one of his revival meeting style campaign rallies in South Dakota. But to export that hostile rhetoric to other countries only makes his animus toward the free press more dangerous for journalists throughout the world.

Roberts was castigated online by many of his peers for allowing Trump to insult Acosta and just going forward with his own lame question. As a result, he later appeared in a segment on Fox where he finally mustered up the courage to defend CNN, NBC, and his profession:

That would have been a great thing to say when Trump lashed out at Acosta. As it is, it was too little. too late. Especially considering the fact that it isn’t just Trump who is dispensing these attacks. It is also many of Roberts’ colleagues on Fox News. It’s Sean Hannity and Steve Doocy and Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson, and few dozen other contributors who make regular appearances. Not to mention most of the GOP caucus in Congress.

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

For Roberts to be taken seriously he would have to call out all of those offenders. He would have to acknowledge that the cries of fake news, dishonesty, and unfairness are just as harmful and inappropriate when they come from a Fox News host as when the come from a desperately lying president. But don’t hold your breath waiting for Roberts, or anyone else at Fox, to be so consistent and honorable. Their mission is the same as it ever was: to defend Dear Leader Trump and to malign his critics. Expect that to continue unabated.

Sick and Dangerous Lies: What Trump is Saying About Democrats Defiles Democracy

No one with any credibility or knowledge of democracy would describe Donald Trump as a champion of freedom or self-government. His entire presidency has been a quickly metastasizing tumor of fascism. He exudes the totalitarian tendencies of the dictators he most admires: Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un, Xi Jinping, etc. And he boasts about advancing initiatives that are overtly discriminatory and suppressive.

Donald Trump Zombie

Yet somehow he continues to be treated as if he were a legitimate leader of a democratic nation. Never mind his repeated assaults on the free press, which he has tagged in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the American People.” This is the ideology of tyrants, which it is clear that Trump aspires to become.

One of the more obvious signs of Trump’s despotic desires is his personal and slanderous attacks on political opponents. It’s been a year and a half since his inauguration and he is still clamoring to “lock up” Hillary Clinton, despite no evidence of any wrongdoing on her part other than challenging Trump. But he is going even further than that by making absurd characterizations of the agenda of Democrats. One example that perfectly illustrates this came in a tweet Tuesday morning:

Trump is ranting about recent comments by Rep. Maxine Waters that called for people to make their feelings known to Trump’s surrogates when encountered in public. That’s nothing more than good old fashioned dissent as guaranteed by the Constitution. Of course Trump falsely accused Waters of advocating violence, which she didn’t do. But then he made his own unambigous threat of violence in response. That’s nothing new for a man who told his supporters assault protesters at his rallies, and then promised to pay their legal bills if they did.

But the claim by Trump that Democrats “want Open Borders and Unlimited Crime” is an unprecedented misrepresentation by an American president. It goes without saying that no Democrat has ever advocated for open borders. Not one, ever. And certainly no Democrat has ever done or said anything in support of crime, unlimited or otherwise. This rhetoric is just plain stupid and would be rejected by all reasonable people.

The problem with this particular moment in history is that Trump has succeeded in aggregating a following of brain-dead cultists who believe everything he says literally. He affirmed that during the campaign when told a rally that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose support. And just yesterday he bragged about a supporter who was asked if there was anything Trump could do to lose her support and she answered “absolutely nothing.”

Perhaps it’s time to fight fire with fire. If Trump thinks it’s acceptable to make hideous assertions about Democrats that have zero basis in fact – or reality – then maybe he should get a taste of his own medicine. Maybe Democrats should start accusing Trump of heinous activities and ideas. For instance:

Oh, wait. All of those are true. If we want to emulate Trump’s contemptible and dishonest rhetoric, this wouldn’t be the same thing at all. We would have to be even more extreme than his reality by saying things like “Trump drinks the blood of immigrant babies.” Or “Trump demands prison for any American who doesn’t drop to both knees and chant his name whenever they see him, or even hear his name.” Or “Investigators have incontrovertible evidence that Trump is the Zodiac killer.” Or “Russian doctor planted a microchip in Trump’s brain that gives Putin control over his thoughts and actions.”

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

That ought to do it. And it would be just accurate as any of the things that Trump says about Democrats. Unfortunately, American liberals aren’t brainwashed the way that Trump’s glassy-eyed disciples are. So no one would believe any of it. But it might still be a useful exercise to demonstrate what a pile of walking bullshit this president is. He needs to be held accountable for his words. And if the media won’t do it, the people need to step up.

Fox News is Literally Lobbying for Revocation of the Constitution’s Protection of the Free Press

On Thursday Donald Trump’s Press Secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, presided over the White House’s (no longer) Daily Press Briefing and proceeded to turn it into a farce by evading questions and outright lying. That, of course, is nothing new. It’s the Standard Operating Procedure for the Trump Communications Office. But what has transpired on Fox News since then is deeply disturbing (which isn’t really new either).

Fox NOT News

At the briefing there were numerous reporters seeking to get Sanders to explain the administration’s position on it’s own policy of ripping children away from parents of asylum seekers. She spent much of her time affirming Trump’s blatant lie that Democrats were responsible for a law that forced him to carry out this heinous practice. But there is no such law. This abuse of human rights was wholly the work of Trump and his cohorts.

When confronted with these facts, Sanders went into a bunker mentality, refusing to answer direct questions or repeating unresponsive talking points. She even descended into personally insulting reporters for merely quoting things she just finished saying. She twisted bible verses in a cynical attempt to support her unconscionable defense of child abuse. And she displayed a callous disregard for the welfare of innocents.

Naturally, Fox News praised Sanders and the Trump administration without reservation or concern for the children. But they went even further to suggest that any criticism, or even just the pursuit of answers, was unpatriotic and disrespectful to a leader they believe must never be challenged. Fox News attacked the journalists who pressed Sanders for answers as animals, which is the same word Trump uses to describe undocumented immigrants. Coincidence?

On Friday two of Fox’s most prominent hosts actually advocated openly for censorship and the suppression of independent journalism. They flagrantly campaigned to silence dissenting voices in the media by prohibiting them from doing their jobs. That’s more than an attack on the reporters, it’s an attack on the Constitution. It violates the First Amendment’s protection of freedom of the press. However, it also puts the grotesque, fascist ideology of Fox News on display for all to see. Cases in point, these commentaries by Fox’s Lou Dobbs and Jesse Watters:

Dobbs: You would think someone would be assigned to slap the hell out of somebody. We’ll talk to our panel tonight about whether it’s time the bar some of these so-called journalists from the White House briefing room permanently.

Watters: These people don’t belong there. They are jokes. They need to start ripping press passes away. If you’re going to act like a wild animal, you don’t belong there.

Remember, the reporters they are criticizing were trying to get answers about the Trump administration’s practice of tearing apart families and warehousing babies in concentration camp-like facilities. So who are the animals? And this isn’t the first time that journalists have had their jobs threatened in this manner. On Tuesday, Trump’s 2020 campaign manger, Brad Parscale, tweeted that CNN’s Jim Acosta “should immediately have his press credentials suspended.” And Trump’s senior counselor, Kellyanne Conway, appeared shortly after that on Fox and Friends to concur with Parscale’s totalitarian-friendly tweet.

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

There is something especially contemptible about an alleged “news” enterprise calling for the suppression of the rights of fellow journalists. But Fox News is unabashedly doing just that. They want all reporting to consist only of drooling adoration of Trump and anything less than that must be quashed. This is more evidence (as if it was necessary) that Fox is not a news outlet at all. They are the PR division of the Trump administration and an obedient purveyor of unvarnished propaganda. And if they are allowed to succeed with their mission to suppress free speech we can wave goodbye to the freedom and democracy upon which it relies.

On Fox News Trump Shill Kellyanne Conway Affirms Demand to Censor CNN Reporter

Throughout Donald Trump’s presidency he has made a point expressing his hostility to the Constitution’s protection of the free press and to anyone who would challenge his supremacy as King of America. Trump has slandered the media in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the American people.” And he frequently calls out reporters by name to accuse them of being “fake news.” Of course, by his definition any news that is less than glassy-eyed adoration he regards as fake.

Kellyanne Conway

As the Trump-Kim Circus drew to a close this week, Trump’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale, parroted Trump’s loathing for the press in a Tweet that appears to imitate Trump’s own rancor. He said that:

That anti-American outburst drew an appropriate reply from CNN’s Acosta, who told Parscale that “Dictatorships take away press credentials. Not democracies.” Not that that will have any impact on the censorious attitudes of Trump and his minions. Earlier Parscale posted a similarly totalitarian notion in a tweet that said that “The media should be cheering @realDonaldTrump’s progress with North Korea.” As if it’s the job of the media to “cheer” for any politician.

Naturally, Fox News rushed to Parscale’s defense by delivering their own attack on Acosta. On Fox and Friends, co-host Ainsley Earhardt introduced a segment with Trump’s Senior Counselor, Kellyanne Conway, by quoting the headline of an article from the ultra-rightist website, The Daily Wire: “Watch: CNN’s Jim Acosta interrupts historic signing ceremony, shouts at Trump.” Surprisingly, she then played the video showing Acosta to be rather demure and respectful, which contradicts the whole narrative of her reporting. That was followed by this exchange (video below):

Earhardt: So there are some critics, Kellyanne, saying that he was choosing the wrong moment, a historic moment, to throw out questions to the President. And then the 2020 campaign manager for President Trump, Brad Parscale, who’s been on our show before, he’s now calling for Acosta to lose his press credentials. He thought it was inappropriate. What are your thoughts, and what are the President’s thoughts?
Conway: Well, some people in the White House press corps do that routinely. I’m not naming any names cause why give it oxygen? They certainly want to make it about me, myself, and I. On Twitter they’re all a hot mess with all this snark and bark toward this president and those who work for him, including those at the White House, in the Cabinet and elsewhere. Things that would not pass editorial muster in the newspaper. I call it social media muscle, cable news cajones. Many of them demonstrate that but don’t have the courage.

Conway, of course, is an expert on hot messes and can snark and bark with the best of them. but if you’re paying attention you will have noticed that Conway failed to take issue with Parscale’s desire to see reporters get punished for being independent and aggressive seekers of truth. Rather, she affirmed the criticism that anyone who disagrees with the President is an annoyance and a coward who ought to be silenced. That’s the sort of philosophy practiced by tyrants like Trump’s new BFF, Kim Jong Un. And Conway elaborated on by adding that:

“People really need to figure out how to cover this president in a respectful manner. They can be skeptical. They can be probing. But there’s a time and a place. Be a polite house guest.”

Exactly. Treat Trump with the same measure of refined courtesy that Fox News and Conway treated President Obama for eight years. You remember. The constant allegations that he was a Muslim born in Kenya who associated with terrorists and hated America. That kind of “respectful manners.” Right?

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

Trump Says He Believes in the Free Press – That He Says is ‘The Enemy of the American People’

On Thursday Donald Trump participated in a press avail with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Reporters asked him about how he was preparing for the (allegedly) upcoming summit meeting with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, Trump replied “I think I’m very well prepared. I don’t think I have to prepare very much. It’s about attitude.” That, besides being a frightening glimpse into Trump’s diseased mindset, is typical of his notorious aversion to learning anything or knowing what the fudge he’s talking about. A responsible leader would study vigorously for weeks prior to a meeting as important as the one with Kim.

Donald Trump

On Friday Trump took a few minutes to answer some questions on his way the G7 meeting in Canada. When reporters sought to confirm his troubling statement about preparation, Trump lied and said that he never said it. He then went on to say that his unedited remarks specified that he had been preparing his whole life for this meeting. However, he didn’t say anything of the kind. And even if he had, that would only exacerbate the idiocy of his thinking. You can’t prepare for a specific diplomatic encounter with a lifetime of greed, lust, and ego gratification. Clearly he had not been preparing for such a meeting his whole life. Trump’s life could only be considered preparation for becoming a dishonest, morally and financially bankrupt, reality TV game show host and treasonous tool of America’s enemies.

In refuting the accurate reports of his inability and contempt for preparation, Trump once again blamed the whole thing on “fake news.” Which makes what he said immediately after all the more ironic. The subject had segued to leakers in government. So Trump wanted to make sure that everyone knew about his commitment to the free press. He said that:

“I believe strongly in freedom of press. I’m a big, big believer in freedom of press. But I’m also a believer in classified information.”

The evidence of Trump’s belief in freedom of the press is somewhere between thin and nonexistent. This is the president who has repeatedly referred to the press in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the American people.” And his insistence on adding the prefix “fake” whenever he refers to the news is a deliberate attempt to discredit all of the media, as well as the Constitution that protects it. His all too obvious purpose is to lay a foundation of distrust so that he can dismiss any reporting that is critical of him. He has literally called for the jailing of reporters and for prohibiting media sources he doesn’t like from covering him. That’s his idea of a strong belief in freedom of the press.

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

Trump is going to cut his G7 visit short because he’s too scared of spending time with the American allies he’s alienated. And since his pal Vladimir Putin won’t be there, it couldn’t be much fun for him. Trump said that Russia should be readmitted to the G7. But why would that be necessary since he is there to do whatever Putin would want? Then he’s off to hang out with Kim in Singapore, where his life of preparation will likely result in him giving Hawaii to North Korea. And if he gets his way, there will be no media there (except for Fox News) to report it.