Closing Rant: Fox News Publishes Trump Op-Ed Filled with Flagrant Lies

With four days left before election day, Donald Trump somehow managed to get Fox News to publish his closing arguments in an op-ed on their website. That should really juice his reelection prospects by putting his views in front of an audience that has heard them a thousand times and is already committed to voting for him.

Donald Trump Fox News

The article is precisely what you would expect from Trump and Fox News. It is riddled with self-serving lies and preposterous allegations against his opponent, Joe Biden. The article is headlined “Donald Trump: Reelect me and I will continue to deliver safety, prosperity and opportunity for all Americans.” So if you are a voter who wants more of the “safety” (280,000 dead), “prosperity” (a nation in recession), and “opportunity” (15 million still unemployed and thousands of businesses bankrupt), then read on. What follows is a collection of some of the ludicrous appeals Trump is throwing at his brainwashed disciples, with brief rebuttals:

“Four years ago, Americans elected me president to go to Washington, drain the swamp and produce real results for them. Now they have a choice: continue the record of prosperity that my administration delivered or return to the old Washington status quo, where Beltway insiders enriched themselves at the expense of hardworking Americans across the country.”

Trump’s idea of prosperity is putting more Americans out of work than ever before. And while his accusation that “the old Washington status quo” sought to enrich themselves has some truth to it, they had nothing on him and his corrupt family of grifters.

“In my first three years in office, our country added more than 7 million new jobs.”

What Trump is leaving out is that in his first three years he presided over the loss of 22 million jobs. So we are still suffering a net loss of 15 million, many of which are permanent.

“My administration’s policies put America in a position to recover quickly from the unforeseen and unprecedented pandemic from China.”

Trump’s policies – or more accurately, lack of policies – have resulted in the world’s worst expansion of the coronavirus pandemic measured by cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Contrary to a recovery, we are currently getting worse, and healthcare experts predict that the worst is yet to come. This is happening as Trump keeps repeating that we have “rounded the turn.”

“Thanks to my emergency economic relief legislation, more than 159 million Americans received direct financial assistance during the pandemic.”

For the record, that emergency economic relief legislation was produced by the Democrats in Congress and was opposed by Trump and the Republicans for most of the time it was being debated. They continue to block new legislation for additional, much-need relief.

“The American economy grew at an annualized rate of 33.1 percent in the third quarter, another example of the economy beating expectations under my leadership.”

Once again, Trump is leaving out the most important part. The economy shrunk by more than 36% prior to this quarter. So we are still in a financial hole, and worse off than before the pandemic hit.

“The largest threat to our great American comeback is a Joe Biden presidency. Biden is running on a platform that would destroy all our economic progress.”

That’s not what most economists are saying. Goldman Sachs recently wrote that “a blue wave would likely prompt us to upgrade our forecasts.” Moody’s wrote that “Biden’s economic proposals, if enacted, would create 7.4 million more jobs than would Trump’s.”

“Joe Biden has openly pledged to eliminate my tax cuts for middle-income Americans, implement radical environmental regulations that would bring our domestic energy revolution to an abrupt halt, and bring back Obama’s disastrous health care calamity.”

Indeed, Biden has pledged to reverse Trump’s Tax Scam for the Rich, which didn’t help the middle-class. Biden also favors an environmental agenda and a healthcare package that Trump is actively opposing, but which the majority of Americans support.

“Biden’s scare tactics extend to America’s seniors with false claims about my record on Social Security.”

The claims about Trump’s record on Social Security come straight form his own lips. He is trying to eliminate the Payroll tax that funds Social Security, and without which it would go bankrupt by 2023.

Trump closes his op-ed with a familiar promise that “we will make America great again.” But if he hasn’t done that in the past four years, why would anyone think he’s going to do it in the next four? In fact, it’s an admission that he’s failed, which is abundantly clear even without his admission. The American people know that the only way to make America great again is to throw Trump out of office let Biden try to fix the problems Trump created. And that’s precisely what they are preparing to do next week.

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

Floundering Trump Frantically and Falsely Spins Economic Data

With less than a week to go before election day, and Trump’s prospects trending worse by the day, his desperation is becoming ever more apparent and bizarre. He’s complaining about “COVID, COVID, COVID” getting more press than he does. And he’s pushing ludicrous and unfounded conspiracy theories (with the help of Fox News).

Donald Trump, Stock Market

Trump’s arm must be getting sore as he stretches to grasp any bit of support he can cling to. In the process he’s actually alienating more voters than he’s attracting. That’s what happens when you brag about only losing 780,000 jobs in a week, or telling his female rally attendees that he will “get your husbands back to work.” And it doesn’t help that Trump thinks the new Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report is good news:

Trump is actually right that the number is one of the biggest ever reported. But that’s only because he has also presided over the worst numbers ever reported. In fact, the 7.4% (33% annualized) gain is less than the 36% decline that preceded it. So we are actually performing worse economically than we were before the coronavirus hit. If you score five runs in the ninth inning, that’s a pretty good inning. But if you gave up ten runs in the eighth, you’re still going to lose the game. For some reason, Trump failed to mention that in his tweet.

In the same tweet, however, Trump also failed to tell the truth (surprise) about Joe Biden’s tax plan. It is hardly “record setting.” It doesn’t even completely reverse Trump’s Tax Scam for Rich. But it does restore some measure of fairness.

It’s also interesting that Trump says that he’s “glad this great GDP number came out before November 3rd.” Notice that he isn’t glad the number was positive. He isn’t glad that it may be an indicator of some economic relief for the long suffering American people that his negligence and incompetence have hurt so badly. He’s only glad that it came out in time to possibly help him get reelected. Although it is likely too late for that, it shows where his priorities are.

For the record, the nation is still in recession. There are still record numbers of people unemployed, and many of those job losses are permanent. Small businesses and farms have gone bankrupt. Savings for seniors and others on fixed incomes are earning next to nothing on interest. Even worse, Trump is trying to terminate the Payroll tax that funds Social Security, which would bankrupt the program by 2023.

Trump likes to claim that he’s responsible for any gains in the stock market and that Biden would be a “disaster.” But not only is the stock market not representative of the broader economy, no president controls it. It’s a function of investors predicting how business will perform in the future.

However, to the extent that those predictions are based on policies put forward by a president, the market’s rise is actually a vote for Joe Biden. That is who Wall Street is anticipating will be president next year, and they regard that as a positive development for the economy. Which makes Trump’s assertion that “Next year will be FANTASTIC!!!” the only true comment in his tweet.

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

Trump Hails Stock Market Whose Rise is a Rejection of Him

The manic frenzy that is displayed daily on the Twitter feed of Donald Trump is especially heated this Monday morning. He posted 75 tweets before 3:00pm in what may break his all time record of 123 tweets in single day. It’s impossible to say at this point whether the reason for this crazed output is his acute panic at the prospect of a landslide electoral loss to Joe Biden in three weeks, or the side effects of the drugs he’s been taking to treat his coronavirus. Or maybe a catastrophic combination of both.

Donald Trump, Stock Market Crash

The flurry of frantic and anxious outbursts that make up this tweetstorm run the gamut of Trump’s paranoid psychoses. For instance, Trump tweeted about a “Big spike in the China Plague in Europe,” in an attempt to compare it to the U.S., which he apparently doesn’t know is suffering from a similar or worse spike. He tweeted that New York and California are “going to hell.” Which is an odd campaign strategy of maligning the biggest states in the country that you’re supposedly leading. He tweeted that he is “winning BIG in all of the polls that matter.” Which I guess are the polls of boaters and maskless bar patrons. But he wasn’t through.

Trump also tweeted that “We will have Healthcare which is FAR BETTER than ObamaCare, at a FAR LOWER COST.” Which is documented in the invisible plan that he has been saying for three years that he will release in two weeks. And as an indication of what is most important to him, Trump posted ten tweets in support of Eric Early, who running a laughably futile campaign against Rep. Adam Schiff of California. Schiff may be the member of Congress Trump despises most after Speaker Nancy Pelosi. That’s more tweets than he posted in support of his Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett.

However, perhaps the most enthusiastic of Trump’s twittery concerned the performance of the stock market. He managed to get something right for once by noting that it was going up. However, he has no idea why it’s doing so. He, of course, thinks he’s responsible for it. And in a way he is, but not in the way he thinks.

Trump has been shouting from the White House rooftop for weeks that a Biden presidency will thrust the nation into a depression. Let’s just set aside the fact that we are already in a recession during the Trump presidency. Trump’s tweets are cheering on the market’s rise along with fear mongering about a collapse if Biden is elected. Never mind that Obama and Biden presided over a much more robust economic recovery and market advance than Trump has. The five tweets he posted on this subject were evidence of nothing more than Trump’s ignorance and ego. For example…

What Trump is missing is that the rise in the market is occurring simultaneously to the rise in Biden’s polling against Trump. The greater the margin of Biden’s lead, the higher the market goes. That’s the market indicating that it is looking forward to a Biden victory. The market is always representative of the future. And this isn’t just a coincidental observation. According to Goldman Sachs, “A Democratic sweep would mean faster economic recovery.”

“…’a blue wave would likely prompt us to upgrade our forecasts,’ Goldman Sachs chief economist Jan Hatzius wrote in a Monday report.”

Hatzius went on to note that a blue wave would increase the likelihood of a coronavirus relief bill. He also noted the positive impact of Biden’s spending plans on infrastructure, climate, health care and education. But that isn’t all. Moody’s also weighed in saying that…

“Moody’s Analytics found that Biden’s economic proposals, if enacted, would create 7.4 million more jobs than would Trump’s. The economy would return to full employment in the second half of 2022, nearly two years earlier than under Trump’s plan, Moody’s said.”

Of course, none of this is a guarantee that the market will continue going straight up. There are distinct warning signs for a down turn. The market is already over-valued in some analysts opinions. And the overweighting of just a few stocks (more than 20% of the S&P) that uncharacteristically benefit from the current conditions (Apple: 7.3%, Microsoft: 5.9%, Amazon: 5.3%, Google: 2.4%, and Facebook: 2.4%) don’t tell the market’s whole story. And as anyone with the slightest inkling of knowledge is aware (which leaves Trump out), the stock market is not the economy. Most Americans do not own stocks.

There is, however, one thing that can’t be denied. If Trump’s fear mongering were correct, the market would have been on a downward trend for at least the past couple of months. Clearly the financial institutions that drive the market don’t agree with Trump. The fact that it’s strong and rising is a testament to the market’s confidence in, and preference for, a Biden presidency.

So keep that in mind when voting. And tell your friends and family. It is Trump who has proven to be an economic imbecile who declared bankruptcy on six separate occasions, lost billions of dollars during the boom times, and currently owes more than $400 billion to – well, we don’t know who because he refuses to release his tax returns. That by itself is reason enough to remove Trump from office. And also to investigate him for criminal activity and crimes against the state.

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

Business as Usual? Trump Returns Home to Spread Lies Along with the Coronavirus

The more that Trump sinks into electoral oblivion, the more desperate and bizarre he becomes. He’s like the wounded mama bear whose psychotic irrationality is triggered and acts out with sociopathic malice and jealous rage. Or something like that.

Donald Trump, White House

Trump’s behavior is further evidence that he should never have been discharged from the Walter Reed Medical Center. Despite his manic and lie-riddled propaganda video on Monday, Trump has learned nothing from his coronavirus adventure. Not only is he still a potentially deadly COVID-19 Super Spreader, he is mentally distancing from reality. A review of his Tuesday morning Twitter rant is all the proof that any competent psychiatrist would need to involuntarily commit to Trump to an institution for his own safety and that of others. For example…

No will be surprised that Trump is lashing out at the press that he so frequently maligns in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people.” But in this instance he is also insulting the American citizens participating in the NBC town hall with Joe Biden. After all, the people in the audience were undecided voters who were asking their own questions. And contrary to Trump’s whining, they were hardly “softballs.” The topics ranged from everything from Biden’s plans for reopening the country and schools to his age and mental health. He was also asked about defunding the police, domestic terrorism, abortion, and accusations that he’s a secret socialist.

What’s more, it’s hysterical that Trump would criticize this independent town hall as a disgraceful use of the “FREE public airwaves” when his own Ministry of Propaganda (aka Fox News) unloads rabidly biased and partisan commentaries 24 hours a day. And for much of those hours Trump himself is on their air to disseminate his lies. That time should be paid for by the RNC. But Trump was just getting started. He also tweeted that…

First of all, fatalities due to common influenza have averaged about 37,000 a year for the past decade. And the ten year high was 61,000. When asked about this tweet, Dr. Anthony Fauci contradicted Trump’s nonsense rambling, saying that COVID-19 is far more lethal than the flu.

It’s insane for Trump to suggest that we “learn to live with” COVID-19. Doesn’t he realize that the families and friends of the 211,000 Americans who have already died can hear him? And while he’s pretending that he has conquered the virus (it’s way to soon for him to say that), and that we shouldn’t be afraid, he also doesn’t get that he has access to medical care that far exceeds that of anyone else in the country.

Trump also tweeted an outright lie about Biden’s position on reproductive rights and Roe v. Wade. Trump falsely claimed that Biden supports late-term abortions. Then he tweeted that he’s looking forward to the next debate with Biden on October 15. Although Trump should not even be allowed in the studio. He and his entourage should be considered highly contagious and a risk to Biden, the press, and everyone else involved in producing the debate. He complained that the media “refuses to discuss how good the Economy” is doing. But the media only refuses to discuss that because the economy is in recession, more than 10 million people are still unemployed, thousands of businesses have gone bankrupt, and tens of thousands of Americans have been evicted or foreclosed on.

Finally, Trump tweeted that he’s terminating discussions with Nancy Pelosi and Congress for a pandemic relief bill until after the election. He claims that Pelosi is negotiating in bad faith, despite the fact that she has already lowered her proposal by a trillion dollars in a compromise with Republicans who want it to go down a trillion more. Trump says that he’ll resume negotiations after he wins the election. So that, presumably, will be never. Those tweets resulted in the stock market taking a nose dive in the last hour of trading.

Unfortunately, we can expect to see more of this aberrant behavior from Trump as election day draws near and his prospects for reelection continue to dwindle. It may even get worse after he loses. The American people and the press are going to have to be vigilant in order prevent further deterioration of our democracy. Trump is dangerously unstable and would like nothing better than to take the country down with him.

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

REALLY? Trump is Afraid that Electing Biden ‘Would Lead To Disaster’

The United States of America is currently undergoing one of the most troubling and turbulent times in its short history. The American people are suffering hardships that have not been imagined for decades. The list of leadership failures under “president” Donald Trump are almost too numerous to mention. But the consequences are far too too painful to ignore.

Trump Fear

An international pandemic has hit the U.S. especially hard, resulting in the deaths of 130,000 people, many of which would have been avoidable if we had competent leadership. The economy is in recession, and 20 million people are unemployed. Our allies are either laughing at us or pitying us, while our adversaries are gladly exploiting opportunities to achieve hostile objectives they have long sought. And in the midst of these calamities, Trump has the unmitigated gall to tweet that the policies of President Joe Biden…

Seriously? This makes you wonder just where Trump thinks his policies have led us. If we are not already in the throes of an epic disaster, then what would one look like? Biden would somehow have to put the Earth in the path of massive asteroid to satisfy Trump’s idea of disaster.

The spark that triggered Trump’s latest tantrum was an article in the ultra-rightist Washington Examiner. The article reported on remarks that Biden made to high-dollar donors at a recent fundraiser:

“In a donor meeting Monday evening, Biden said he was ‘going to to get rid of the bulk of Trump’s $2 trillion tax cut.’ He added about President Trump’s 2017 tax law, enacted with a Republican Senate and a House then under Republican control, ‘A lot of you may not like that, but I’m going to close loopholes like capital gains and stepped-up basis,’ mentioning the numerous wealthy people in attendance virtually.”

Naturally Trump regards this as a disaster since it would adversely affect him and his upper-crust pals in the GOP (Greedy One Percent). But you have to give Biden credit for telling prospective donors – and the very people whose taxes would be raised – that this is what he intends to do. Fortunately, there are some in the high income group who understand the need to raise taxes in order to “promote the general Welfare” (as the Constitution says), and that they are the ones who can best afford it. In the end, the reduction of the deficit, and the benefit to the overall economy, will serve the interests of the wealthy as well. It’s working people who drive economic prosperity. Without consumers the corporations will wither and die.

Trump’s Tax Scam was never a good idea. It was intended to further enrich the already wealthy, and to entice them to contribute to Republican campaigns. The benefits of the tax cuts were distributed overwhelming to the rich. But in the wake of Trump’s catastrophic negligence, incompetence, and even deliberate malfeasance, many of the most reliable right-wingers are abandoning ship.

Biden’s pledge to reverse Trump’s tax cuts include raising the top corporate tax bracket from 21% to 28%. Which is still below the 35% it was at prior to Trump’s cuts. However, it would help to bring the budget closer to balance and, of more immediate concern, raise funds to help the American people, small businesses, and local governments weather the pandemic storm. It’s exactly the sort of progressive agenda that’s needed at this critical juncture.

As for Trump’s priorities, they remain precisely what they’ve been since the day he announced his candidacy by disparaging Latinos as criminals and rapists. His recent Independence Day speeches were littered with racist dog whistles, or more accurately, foghorns. Judging by the content of his speeches, the most pressing national problems are protecting the statues of Confederate traitors and suppressing the First Amendment rights of citizens protesting injustice and systemic racism. On these matters Trump believes that the if the people are allowed to exercise their rights…

It’s unclear who Trump thinks would be “calling the shots” in the Biden administration, but his list would surely include Hillary Clinton, George Soros, and the ghost of Osama Bin Laden. For the record, Kimberley Strassel, a Trump-fluffing Wall Street Journal columnist, misrepresented Biden’s remarks. Biden was not asked if he would “condemn” the protesters, only what he thought should be done about the offensive monuments. And only a seriously deranged mind could interpret Biden’s answer to be the ominous foreshadowing of “the beginning of the end.” Luckily for Trump, that’s exactly the kind of mind he has. And it has led us unarguably to the disaster that he now says he fears.

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

Chicken Trump Flees Fake News Conference For Fear of Being Asked Questions

The character (or lack thereof) of Donald Trump is on display every day, and it isn’t a pretty picture. In addition to his pathological lying, infantile name-calling, flaming racism, and malignant narcissism, Trump also flaunts his unabashed weakness and cowardice. He is the first American “leader” who has actually bragged about being the most fabulous whiner.”

Donald Trump Chicken

On Thursday morning Trump held something that he called a “news” conference to announce the details of the latest jobs report. However, it was nothing but a self-serving public statement wherein he spoke for a few minutes, then left without taking a single question. The reasons for that were obvious after a quick analysis of his remarks.

First of all, the jobs report had some surface level good news that 4.8 million people had returned to work in June. But looking just slightly below the surface reveals that this report is not at all encouraging. None of those jobs were newly created. They were all just a small fraction of workers being called back from furloughs. More troubling is the fact that there are still more than 30 million people unemployed. The unemployment rate of 11.1% is still higher than at the peak of the Great Recession. And there were 1.4 million new unemployment filings. That’s likely to increase significantly next month reflecting that more than half the country has reinstated lockdown rules due the surging coronavirus pandemic.

Trump’s phony fifteen minute press conference may be the shortest of his presidency. And no wonder. He was clearly afraid to face questions from the free press that he maligns in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people.”. He was afraid he would be asked about coronavirus deaths nearing 130,000, and cases exceeding 50,000 in a single day for the first time. He was afraid he would be challenged on his lies about Russia paying bounties to Taliban militants to kill American soldiers. And Trump was surely scared about having to field specific questions about this jobs report. He’d rather just unload his spin, waddle off the stage, and get back to satisfying his Twitter and Fox News addictions.

Consequently, Trump said nothing about the Russian bounty story that is, without a doubt, the most flagrantly treasonous conduct ever alleged against a U.S. president. As for the pandemic that is reaching new and tragic heights of cases and fatalities, Trump dismissively referred to them as “hotspots,” continuing to downplay the peril that he still thinks will “disappear” by magic. “Now we’re opening it up,” Trump boasted, “and it’s opening up far faster than anyone even thought possible. And more successfully.” If this is his idea of “success,” let’s hope we never see what he would call failure.

It would be an understatement to say that things are going badly for Trump lately. His standing in the polls is lower than any incumbent president in modern times. Speculation is growing that he might choose to drop out of the race, even on Fox News. His cherished cult rallies aren’t drawing the throngs of adoring disciples that he requires to satiate his ravenous ego. So it’s likely that he will continue to be ducking out of the public eye for the foreseeable future. If there’s one thing that we can rely on, it’s that Trump is a coward who would rather skulk in his bunker than face the prospect of accountability for his failures and crimes.

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

Fox News Forced to Apologize for Grossly Racist Graphic

This is one of those days when you need to check the weather report in Hell. If it hasn’t frozen over, there is at least a severe polar vortex bearing down on Satan’s lair. The storm warning came in the form of an announcement by Fox News that they were sorry about having aired a graphic so drenched in bigotry that even they couldn’t tolerate it.

Fox News Sad

On the Friday episode of Fox’s signature evening “news” program, Special Report, (not an opinion show like Sean Hannity), they did a segment on the economy and the recent gains in the stock market. Seeking to contextualize these gains, Fox produced a graphic that compared past market increases with particular events in history.

The problem was that each of the historical events they selected was the murder of an African-American. The only feasible conclusion to draw from this presentation was that Fox News regards the killing of black men in America as a positive factor in economic growth. They seem to be saying “Just think how much higher the market would be if more black men were murdered.”

It is not coincidental that they did this the same day that the Racist-in-Chief, Donald Trump, tried to conflate the stock market with what he said is “a great day” for George Floyd. But in a rare gesture of journalistic remorse (only after an avalanche of crushing criticism) Fox News later issued a tepid apology:

That’s a big concession for the network that has never apologized for backing conspiracy theories like Barack Obama being born in Kenya. Or that a Democratic aide was murdered by Hillary Clinton associates. Or that Russia didn’t interfere with the 2016 presidential election. Or that the fictional Antifa(scist) “organization” is orchestrating civil unrest at protests over the killing of George Floyd by police. Or that Joe Biden is mentally unfit. Or that Donald Trump IS mentally fit.

Still, Fox is only apologizing for not having put the data in context. Although, it’s hard to imagine a context that wouldn’t have made this flagrantly racist. There is no framing for which this information would have been useful. The stock market rises and falls on a variety of triggering factors that include corporate earnings, international trade, employment statistics, federal legislation, and even gut feelings about speculative future economic environments. But nowhere is there any evidence of violence against African-Americans being the cause of any market activity.

In fact, it’s easy to make the case for virtually any activity producing some market movement based on one week’s worth of data. For instance, the market rose 1.5% in the week following Trump’s impeachment. Is that an indication that Wall Street was celebrating Trump’s political demise? The week after racist GOP icon George Wallace died the market rose 2.4%. And of particular interest to Fox News, the week following the death of their founder and CEO Roger Ailes, the market leapt 3.2%. Is that telling us something about bigoted, sexual predators who run propaganda machines?

With all of the naked racial prejudice that airs on Fox news on a daily basis, it is not nearly sufficient that they put out a perfunctory “apology” for this sort of behavior that is so consistent with their noxious conduct in their past. They need to demonstrate that they have a grasp of the consequences of their broadcasts by censuring their repeat racist offenders: Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Tucker Carlson, and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends, for starters. Absent that, they can take their apology and shove it.

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

Rearranging the Deck Chairs on the Trump-tanic: Sinking Hopes for 2020

It is abundantly clear that Donald Trump, America’s first reality TV game show host to serve as president, learned everything he knows about communications from his shallow experience in the world of television. Everything he says – whether good news or bad – has the stench of a sleazy infomercial. And Trump pumps out his propaganda as if he’s peddling Sham-Wow rags to the trailer park crowd.

Donald Trump, Republican, GOP

On Friday morning Trump held what he called a press conference, although he left after making a statement and took no questions at all. He greeted the press corps with strange praise saying that “I noticed you’re starting to get much closer together. Looks much better.” What Trump failed to mention was that the chairs were originally arranged in compliance with social distancing guidance, but before the press arrived Trump’s staff rearranged them to put everyone closer together, and more at risk. Talk about rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

Trump only crawled out from his bunker to crow about a new set of jobs numbers indicating that some of the millions of Americans who became unemployed due his negligent and incompetent mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic had returned to work. Trump presented this data as a “Mission Accomplished” moment, despite the fact that the unemployment rate is still at historic highs (13.1%) and more than 20 million Americans are still not working. And in a bizarre conflation of concepts, Trump praised the economic news as somehow being beneficial to George Floyd, the African-American man who was murdered by police last week. Trump beamed that

“Hopefully, George is looking down right now and saying this is a great thing that’s happening for our country. This is a great day for him, it’s a great day for everybody. This is a great day for everybody. This is a great, great day in terms of equality.”

Really? Even if the jobs numbers are accurate (and with the Trump administration that’s a risky assumption), the unemployment rate for whites declined from 14.2% to 12.4%. But for African-Americans it rose from 16.7% to 16.8%. What a great day for George.

UPDATE: As it turns out, there was a huge miscalculation in the unemployment rate. The real number is closer to 20%, which is near a record high and is what analysts predicted.

Earlier in the day, Trump displayed a measure of anxiety in his standard way: by firing off a frantic tweetstorm. This is how he lets the world know when he’s scared, planting himself on his Twitter throne and blasting out an incoherent stream of invective and flagrant distortions of reality (aka lies). And on Friday morning Trump was busy not being president as he rattled off a record 131 posts on Twitter. Most of them (115) were retweets of Republican senators. And most of those were promoting 13 of the senators running for reelection in competitive races. Some of the most at-risk GOP senators who got shout-outs from Trump were Martha McSally (AZ), Tom Cotton (AR), Cory Gardner (CO), and Thom Tillis (NC). Eighteen others were either in close races or held safe Republican seats. Democrats only need four seats to flip to take control of the Senate.

For some reason Trump didn’t bother to help out his pals Mitch McConnell (KY) or Lindsey Graham (SC), who are both facing strong Democratic challengers. He also left out Susan Collins (ME), who is struggling survive, and Kelly Loeffler (GA), who is embroiled in an insider trading scandal.

The bottom line is that Trump wouldn’t cough up more than a hundred tweets featuring senators running for reelection five months before election day – and during an ongoing pandemic – and while there is nationwide civil unrest – unless he was worried about losing both the presidency and the Republican majority in the Senate. If he is worried, it may be the first thing he’s gotten right in three and a half years. The likelihood of Democratic victories for the Senate and the White House increase every day as Trump’s failures drive his approval ratings ever lower. and his toxicity is rubbing off on his party confederates. At some point they are going to flee like the proverbial rats that they are. And that will leave Trump all alone and trembling in his bunker.

UPDATE: Today Trump hit a new record of a staggering 195 tweets (including 161 retweets) in a single day. That’s About one tweet every four minutes for 13.5 hours.

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

Even Trump Doesn’t Believe His Lies that the Economy Will Rebound Quickly

The strongest argument that Donald Trump had for reelection was his contention that the economy was booming and that he was the reason why. Of course, neither of those things are true. Before the emergence of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, the economy was a house of cards being propped up by artificially low interest rates, a federal Reserve Board that was printing money, and Trump’s disastrous tax cuts for corporations and the rich that benefited the stock market, but not the overall economy.

Donald Trump Apocalypse

Trump was and is desperate to push off an inevitable recession (or worse) until after the election in November. So he’s employing shady tactics to disguise how shaky the economy actually is. The pandemic isn’t helping him except as a convenient excuse to blame for the declining GDP and rising unemployment. And he’s pretending that those metrics wouldn’t be in place but for the health crisis. Even more disturbing, Trump is pushing to “reopen” the nation far too soon to ensure the safety of the American people. Make no mistake, the only reason Trump is advocating this perilous course is to juice the economy and his reelection prospects.

The truth is that the U.S. economy has been teetering for the past 12 to 18 months. Credit is stretched beyond sustainable limits. Trade is at record lows, partly due to Trump’s idiotic tariffs. Markets for real estate, oil, transportation, and banking have been noticeably fragile. So even when the effects of the pandemic are removed, prosperity will not magically return. And you’ll never guess who knows that.

Despite his daily (hourly) tirades directed at the press, wherein he insists that he’s done everything perfectly and there’s nothing to worry about, Trump is well aware of the economic trouble that is lying in wait. He has repeatedly said that there will be a rapid rebound and that the country will soar to heights greater than ever before this year is out. However, that optimism is not present in the management of his own businesses. The Miami Herald is now reporting that…

“Trump National Doral Miami, President Donald J. Trump’s Miami-Dade resort hotel and golf course, has announced 250 workers who were originally furloughed indefinitely will now be permanently laid off. […] ‘Unfortunately, it now appears that the adverse effects of the COVID-19 outbreak upon our business will be longer and more substantial than previously was foreseeable.'”

So while Trump is telling the press that there is going to be a historic booming economy in the coming months, he is drastically cutting his work force at one of his signature properties. In other words, while he’s lying to the people about their economic future, he is making sure that he won’t be overextended during the downturn that he knows will be severe and enduring. And he is forcing the hardships onto working folks who are already struggling to survive.

This is typical of Trump’s self-serving approach to governing. It’s the reason he pressured the Fed to lower interests rates that resulted in him saving millions of dollars on his outstanding debts. It’s the reason he’s so anxious to get businesses open again, like his own that have reportedly cost him about 30% of his net worth

And it is now the reason that Trump is terminating hundreds of workers that he previously promised to rehire, due to what he openly recognizes will be a prolonged economic recession or depression. But while he is taking these steps to preserve his own wealth, he continues to deceive the American people with happy-talk of the imaginary economic utopia that only he can produce. Anyone who believes that drivel deserves what they get. The sad thing is, the rest of us will suffer along side them. Which makes it all the more important to make certain that you, and everyone you know, vote Trump out in November.

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

Trump Whines that ‘Rich Guys’ Profit From the Stock Market that He’s Manipulating

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic is a human tragedy of epic proportions. And due to Donald Trump’s negligence, incompetence, and sometimes deliberate mishandling of the federal government’s response, more than 83,000 Americans have lost their their lives. Current estimates indicate that the number of fatalities is going to increase to 147,000 by August.

Donald Trump, Stock Market

However, this isn’t just a public health crisis. The nation’s economy has taken a historic hit as the country is virtually shutdown in order to mitigate the spread of the virus. More than 20 million people have lost their jobs, and small businesses are struggling to remain viable. The stock market is currently in bear market territory, down about 23% from its recent highs.

The mitigation efforts have been working, but because Trump is worried more about the economy and his floundering reelection prospects than he is about human lives, he is pushing to force people back into dangerous workplaces far too soon. And in the midst of all of this, Trump took time away from his Fox News viewing on Wednesday morning to post a tweet whining about people who are making money trading on the volatile swings in the stock market:

Seriously? There is so much wrong in that brief twantrum that it demands further analysis. First of all, who are these “so-called ‘rich guys'” Trump is complaining about? Wouldn’t they actually be the sort of people that he associates with on a regular basis? And what’s wrong with traders placing bets on the market, which is exactly what they always do, pandemic or not?

What’s more, Trump’s complaint is glaringly incoherent. He begins by implying that there’s something wrong with people trying to drive stock prices down in order to make a profit. This is his way of attempting to make excuses for the recent declines. But then he immediately reverses course, noting that the same people are also driving prices up. That would make their efforts a wash. So what the heck is his problem? He is, as usual, not making any sense. But he thinks this blather will persuade the dimwits who follow him that there’s nothing wrong with the economy.

This sort of trading is common on Wall Street. And there isn’t anything illegal about it. Every stock transaction is a “bet” and experienced traders know that. If Trump were truly interested in unlawful activities, he might have said something about the Trump-fluffing GOP senators – Richard Burr and Kelly Loeffler – who sold off millions of dollars of stocks that were plainly at risk before the markets collapsed. Those sales were also after they both had attended hearings that outlined the coming pandemic risks, but turned around and told their constituents that everything was fine. They are currently being investigated by the Senate ethics committee.

In addition to that, Trump and his family were also invested in pharmaceutical companies that stood to gain from the pandemic’s turmoil. Among those investments was the company that manufactures hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug that Trump was irresponsibly promoting as a treatment for the coronavirus.

Trump’s interest in the markets has been ongoing throughout this crisis. He has taken a personal interest in seeking to prop up the markets artificially by pressuring the Federal Reserve Board to lower interests rates. But for some reason he failed to mention that in doing so, he would save millions of dollars on the outstanding variable interest rate loans he owes to foreign banks. Trump was also surely concerned about the fact that revenues for his own real estate holdings were down 30% since the pandemic began. That may explain in part why he’s so anxious to get everyone back to work.

So if anyone was trying to manipulate the markets, it was Trump. His coercion of the Fed and his relentless and misguided happy-talk were all designed to increase his own wealth and to juice his reelection campaign. In light of that, his question as to whether the actions of traders was “barely legal” takes on a whole new meaning. Most likely, Barely Legal was the just the name of the last magazine the Trump subscribed to.

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