Sean Hannity Forces a Fox News Lockdown on Opinions About the Rosenstein/Trump Affair

On Friday the New York Times published a bizarre story about Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. The article alleged that Rosenstein had floated a suggestion to secretly record Donald Trump to gather evidence of his mental infirmity. There was reportedly further discussion of invoking the 25th Amendment to declare the President incompetent and remove him from office. That hardly seems like an allegation that needs any additional proof.

Fox News Sean Hannity

As noted yesterday, the article was peculiar because…

“…the only other beneficiary of it would be the White House. It gives Trump an excuse to fire Rosenstein and appoint someone in his place who would put the brakes on the investigation of special counsel, Robert Mueller. But it would be somewhat hypocritical for Trump to do that on the basis of a story from a news source that he considers fake and failing. Consequently, he might need some support from his cheering section (and shadow cabinet) at State TV, also known as Fox News.”

It looked like Trump was getting the support he would need to fire Rosenstein from a bevy of Fox News hacks. They included Laura Ingraham, Gregg Jarrett, and Jeanine Pirro. But all was not as tightly synchronized as one would expect of the Fox propaganda machine. Later that evening when Sean Hannity’s program came on, he had a decidedly different take on the matter. He looked squarely into the camera and delivered a personal message to Trump saying “Under zero circumstances should the president fire anybody. The president needs to know it is all a setup.” Hannity asserted that the whole thing might be an insidious attempt by the “deep state” to bait Trump into firing Rosenstein and then initiating impeachment proceedings against him for doing so.

Despite the absurdly Machiavellian flavor of that conspiracy theory, it appears to have taken hold and altered the Fox News playbook for this issue. Ingraham deleted her tweet without any explanation. And Pirro posted a subsequent tweet adopting Hannity’s framing. She even went a little further to speculate that Rosenstein was the Times’ anonymous source. Tucker Carlson was already on board having opined that it was former Deputy Director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, who leaked the memos to the Times since he “has every incentive to want to see the president impeached.”

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

So now we have achieved the full hive-mind harmony that is required of a socio-political cult. This unanimity of viewpoint makes it possible for the borg Family to advance their robo-mission unencumbered by independent thought. And surprisingly, the leader of the Family has remained silent. Trump has not addressed the Times’ article directly since it’s publication. He did make a sideways reference at a rally that simply accused his Department of Justice of having a “lingering stench.” Which is something that, were he more self aware, he would realize was emanating from himself. But for the time being, Rosenstein’s job is safe due to the paranoid musings of Trump’s State TV (aka Fox News).

Fox News Urges Trump to Fire Rosenstein Over Comments in the ‘Fake News, Failing’ New York Times

The latest bombshell to emerge from Washington D.C. in the twisted era of Donald Trump comes just as the controversy over Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is reaching a boiling point. Is it a distraction or a legitimate news story that demands immediate attention? No matter, it’s already getting the airwave blanketing that was inevitable considering the subject.

Donald Trump, Fox News

The New York Times is reporting that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had floated the idea of secretly recording Trump to gather evidence that he was mentally unstable and unfit for service. There was reportedly further discussion of invoking the 25th Amendment to declare the President incompetent and remove him from office. Other news reports have spoken to sources who say that Rosenstein was being sarcastic. And Rosenstein himself issued a firm denial.

What’s peculiar about this story, other than the distracting effect it has on Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual misconduct, is that the only other beneficiary of it would be the White House. It gives Trump an excuse to fire Rosenstein and appoint someone in his place who would put the brakes on the investigation of special counsel, Robert Mueller. But it would be somewhat hypocritical for Trump to do that on the basis of a story from a news source that he considers fake and failing. Consequently, he might need some support from his cheering section (and shadow cabinet) at State TV, also known as Fox News. And he’s already getting it:


[Note: Ingraham deleted this tweet the next day. Was it because Hannity took the opposite position?]

Wow. Are these three confirmed Trump-fluffers all buying into the “fake news” from the New York Times? Laura Ingraham, Gregg Jarrett, and Jeanine Pirro are three of Trump’s most devoted supplicants on Fox News. And it stands to reason that they would want to rush to give him cover to jettison the bone spur that has traveled from Trump’s foot to his ample backside. But will he take the bait?

Trump has posted ten tweets since this news broke, and none of them are about Rosenstein or the New York Times. Is he consulting with Sean Hannity, Bill Shine, and the rest of his propaganda team to come up with a strategy? Is he afraid to get out too far ahead of the story while it’s still unfolding? Is he getting spanked by a porn star at Mar-A-Lago? Who knows? But the fear factor may be the most plausible scenario. Because even his pals at Fox News aren’t completely in his corner. Shelby Holliday of Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal had this to say in an interview shortly after the story was released:

It probably won’t be long until Trump makes his views known about this. He is simply too lacking in self control to keep his mouth shut. But if he does fire Rosenstein he’s going to have to explain why he suddenly believes the “failing” New York Times” whose story was based on the anonymous sources that Trump says don’t exist. He will also have to face more charges of obstruction of justice as Mueller gets closer to wrapping up his probe. But if he let’s it go, then Mueller and company proceed as before. So all told, this is really a lose-lose proposition for Trump.

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

LATE BREAKING: Sean Hannity is diverging from his Fox colleagues above. On his program Friday night he had a personal message for Trump, warning him that “Under zero circumstances should the president fire anybody.” Hannity thinks Trump is being set up by Democrats – or the deep state, or Satan – and that giving Rosenstein the boot is a “set up,” a plot to justify impeachment. Those insidious demonrats.

Trump’s Video Confessionals Bring the White House One Step Closer to the Reality TV Presidency

A few months ago Trump brought Bill Shine into the White as his Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications. In other words, Minister of Propaganda. Shine is the former Fox News President who was fired due to his handling of sexual harassment at the network by Roger Ailes, Bill O’Reilly and other big shots. Now he is handling the PR for a president with his own history of being a serial predator and whose nominee for the Supreme Court is battling similar charges.

Donald Trump

The presence of Bill Shine in the White House is unmistakable. His fingerprints are all over Trump’s public appearances and rallies that are now stage managed more carefully. They are located in more photogenic environments. And the access of the media is constrained to insure positive visual imagery, or at least political sterility. Shine is a veteran TV manipulator who learned his craft at the knee of Fox’s Godfather, the late Roger Ailes.

Shine’s propaganda pedigree is long-established. Before taking the reins of the network as president, he was the producer of Sean Hannity’s program. Hannity was so reliant on Shine that when rumors erupted about his imminent termination, Hannity exploded and whined that Shine’s departure would be “the total end of the Fox News Channel as we know it.” If only.

In his new position, Shine is exploiting the assets of his “star” whose resume is mainly littered with the gossip pages and reality TV. Trump spent fourteen years as the “host” of The Apprentice, so don’t let anyone fool you into thinking that he was a busy real estate magnate. No authentic billionaire businessman has that much time to spare on television pablum. The Apprentice was Trump’s job. So Shine is putting that experience to work by casting Trump in short films that have little substance or news value.

The closest thing that these presidential clips can be compared to are the moments in reality TV shows where a character is separated from the herd and speaks directly to the camera about some personal observations regarding the other cast members. On Thursday one these confessionals was posted to Trump’s Twitter feed that whined about China taking advantage of America on trade issues. Trump complained that China looked at the U.S. as “very soft touches.” And he made the point that he doesn’t blame China, he blames America. It’s the “Blame America First” doctrine.

The day before that, Trump posted a video of himself declaring his devotion to the victims of Hurricane Florence in the Carolinas. Never mind that the victims of Hurricane Maria that devastated Puerto Rico are figments of a “deep state” cabal to manufacture a fake death toll. This video features Trump’s pseudo-sincere ramblings set to an inspirational music sound track.

The day before that, Trump posted a clip thanking the first responders to Hurricane Florence, which he described as “a tough hurricane. One of the wettest we’ve ever seen from the standpoint of water.” Okay, so Shine isn’t perfect. But look at who he has to work with.

These are just the most recent examples of the Reality TV style infomercials produced by Shine and Company. Others include segments from Fox News programs of Trump-fluffing characters like Hannity, Jeanine Pirro, Lou Dobbs, Maria Bartiromo, or the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends. Some of the videos just show Trump signing a big book that represents some legislation or executive order that he’s touting.

The one thing that all of these productions have in common is that they are all purposefully staged to put Trump in the best light possible. They give the President a public presence where he doesn’t have to bother with pesky reporters asking difficult questions. And of course, there is no opportunity for rebuttal or for any opinion other than the state sanctioned one mandated by Trump and his Propaganda Ministry staff. Shine is literally bringing Big Brother to the White House.

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

Shine’s role at the White House is to reproduce the sort of media tyranny that exists in Russia, North Korea, and that was pioneered by Nazi Germany’s Joseph Goebbels. All of whom Trump has repeatedly demonstrated his admiration for. And Bill Shine is the person who is doing the most to help Trump realize his authoritarian goals with a reality TV flavor.

SRSLY? Trump Dislikes the Term ‘Deep State’ Because ‘I’m Really Not a Conspiratorial Person’

It’s wonderful to have a president with a sharp a wit and a keen sense of humor. And maybe someday we will have such a president again. Until then we will have to get used to Donald Trump and his wacky lack of any self awareness whatsoever. He is a man that is so warped by flaming narcissism that he actually believes that he is loved by a nation where his polling is at historic lows. He even refers to himself as Your favorite President who “did nothing wrong.”

Donald Trump, Deep State

In an interview with The Hill, Trump spoke glowingly about his State TV (aka Fox News) Shadow Cabinet. Referring to the network’s most sycophantic Trump-fluffers, the President fondly singled out “the great Lou Dobbs, the great Sean Hannity, the wonderful, great Jeanie Pirro.” And you know the feelings are mutual. Trump cited them as the reason he declassified Russia-related documents that he didn’t even read. But you have to wonder what these conspiracy hounding crackpots will think when they find out that Trump has renounced their favorite theoretical label: the Deep State.

“I don’t like to use it,” Trump said, “because it sounds so conspiratorial, and believe it or not I’m really not a conspiratorial person.”

Really? That is such a megalithic distortion of reality that it’s hard to comprehend how he can be that delusional and still get through the day without stripping naked and skipping down Pennsylvania Avenue singing “I Feel Pretty.” Even the The Hill couldn’t let it stand without an instant fact check:

“Trump may not like the term, but he has used it more than once. At a rally earlier this month, Trump used it to refer to the anonymous author of an op-ed published in The New York Times, denouncing ‘un-elected deep state operatives who defy the voters to push their own secret agendas are truly a threat to democracy itself.’ He described the ‘deep state’ as a threat to democracy in the Sept. 7 speech.”

And that is just the beginning. Trump has referenced the imaginary “Deep State” on numerous occasions. He has long been convinced that there is a secret governmental cabal that is out to get him. He rants about it incessantly. It’s a conspiracy that includes the agencies he is currently overseeing as President, including the Department of Justice, the FBI, the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the State Department, etc. And it’s so pervasive that he can’t rely on these agencies, so he turns instead to his BFF, Vladimir Putin (who has recently been stoking the Deep State mythology in private phone calls with Trump). What’s more, it’s a regular feature of his Twitter feed:

Nevertheless, Trump now incomprehensibly asserts that he doesn’t like the term anymore. Notice that he doesn’t say that there is no Deep State. Only that he isn’t comfortable with that particular descriptor. Nothing can sway him from his long-standing conspiracy theories. After all, this is the same guy who pushed the Birther conspiracy for years. He believes that vaccines cause autism. He insisted that thousands of Muslims in New Jersey celebrated 9/11. He thinks climate change is hoax started by China. Most recently he decided that the 3,000 estimated deaths in Puerto Rico from Hurricane Maria was made up by the scoundrels at George Washington University.

But more problematic is the fact that the people Trump admires most – his Fox News Council of Propaganda – use the term even more than than he does. Hannity has made it into a brand that encompsses nearly everything he does on his program. What will they do now that Trump has expressed his disdain for the term? Will they drop it in deference to Dear Leader? Will they convince him that he should reconsider and embrace it? Will they go rogue and use it in defiance of his authority? Or will he forget that he ever renounced it and go on using as if nothing happened (that’s my bet)? Tune in next week for the shocking conclusion to this earth shaking dilemma.

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

Trump is in a Panic Sweat as He Binge Watches Fox News for Leaked Conspiracy Theories

Monday morning we have been treated to a new episode in the continuing series of Donald Trump’s epic saga “How Can I Make Myself Look Even More Guilty?” It’s the tale of a traitorous president who thinks that by repeatedly lashing out against the valiant guardians of the law he will escape accountability for his treasonous crimes. In this outing we see our lead character colluding with Fox News to weave a narrative that mocks reality.

Donald Trump Fox News

Over the weekend there was a dearth of Trump tweets for an extraordinarily long seventeen hour span. The only plausible reason for this was that Fox News was covering Hurricane Florence non-stop and couldn’t engage in their usual advisory role for the President. Since Trump doesn’t have the foggiest notion what he actually believes, he was left dumb by the absence of his brain trust. But now that the hurricane has been demoted to old news by Fox, the pundits are back fulfilling their duties to the White House.

In a tweet dripping with the panic sweat of a caged rat, Trump once again portrays the investigation of his activities as a “totally illegal Witch Hunt.” Proving that he doesn’t know the meaning of the words “witch hunt” or “illegal.” Furthermore, Trump acquired his latest paranoid delusion from his senior White House advisers at Fox News. Here is what he posted:

The Fox News story, as reported by Catherine Herridge (video below), did assert that former FBI attorney Lisa Page testified in a closed-door session of Congress that that there was no evidence of collusion between Trump and Russia. Herridge said that:

“A transcript reviewed by Fox News shows that during her recent closed-door interview on Capital Hill, Page testified that collusion was still unknown nine months into the FBI’s Russia case when the special counsel Robert Mueller was appointed. Quote: ‘I think this represents that even as far as May 2017, we still couldn’t answer the question.'”

Herridge later characterized Page’s testimony as an “admission that there was no evidence of Russian collusion.” But that is not what Page said. According to Herridge’s own reporting Page merely said that it was an open question. If anything she was saying that, while there was evidence, there wasn’t hard proof. What Page actually said was that “it still existed in the scope of possibility that there would be literally nothing.” That means there was a chance nothing happened, not that nothing happened.

Contrary to Trump’s assertion that “the case should never have been allowed to be brought,” this is exactly the sort of scenario that calls for a special counsel to conduct a more in depth and independent investigation. Still, the Justice Department, acting with an abundance of caution, didn’t request a special prosecutor until after Trump fired FBI director James Comey, signalling the possibility of obstruction of justice. And it cannot be reiterated enough that it was a Trump appointee (Rod Rosenstein) who named a life-long Republican (Robert Mueller) for the job.

So Trump is, once again, demonstrating that he spends an inordinate amount of time watching Fox News and regurgitating the nonsense he learns from it. That’s no longer in question. What isn’t being asked is how Fox News got Page’s testimony from a closed session of Congress? Who leaked it and why only parts that help Trump (if they are deliberately misinterpreted)? What about the rest of her testimony? Shouldn’t that be released now to insure that the leaked portions are viewed in their proper context?

Don’t hold your breath waiting for the remainder of Page’s testimony to be made public. The Republicans in charge of that information don’t want a fair reading of what took place. That’s why they cherry-picked some ambiguous comments and delivered them exclusively to Fox News. And it was tailor made for their number one viewer to validate his already preposterous fantasy that there is a nefarious “deep state” cabal working to destroy him. What a coincidence.

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

Bring Back Jim Crow? Tucker Carlson of Fox News Accidentally Admits He’s a Straight-Up Racist

The Senior Douchebag of Fox News, and host of Tucker Carlson Tonight, has been making news this week. In an “interview” with Stormy Daniels’ attorney, Michael Avenatti, Carlson was beaten to a pulp and exposed as an intellectual lightweight who has no grasp of facts or common sense. It was delicious to see him squirm and stutter.

Tucker Carlson Fox News

You would think that after such an embarrassing display, Carlson would try to rehabilitate his tattered reputation. You would be wrong. On Friday’s episode, Carlson hosted Univision anchor Enrique Acevedo for a discussion on immigration. Carlson began his inquisition by framing the entire debate as a measurement of the immigrant population of the country. His premise was that the more immigrants, the worse off the nation is. And he expressed a longing for the past, which he perceives as being more homogeneously white. It wasn’t. It’s just that the majority white population was more in control. But Carlson viewed that as better:

“When I was born in this country, the percentage of people who were living here, who were foreign-born, was under five percent. It’s now about fourteen percent. So that’s a three-fold increase. That’s a huge change – huge change – in less than fifty years. Is the country better or worse for that, would you say?”

Acevedo responded that the country is better off, as is the economy. Well, he tried to respond, but Carlson cut him off after about twelve seconds. Then, when Acevedo tried to inform Carlson that two-thirds of GDP growth since 2011 was due to immigration, he was interrupted again after twelve seconds. Does Carlson have an “interrupter clock”?.

The debate then shifted to the immigrants themselves, and whether they merited entry to America. Carlson argued that most immigrants were poor and undeserving of entry. You know, the “huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” He couldn’t comprehend the reality that even poor immigrants contribute to the country, either by filling jobs that Americans won’t do, or by rising up through hard work and innovation to found companies like Apple and Google.

Carlson then asserted that there is something undemocratic about current immigration policy because all the polls say that Americans want less of it. That, however, isn’t true. In fact, most polls show that broad majorities of Americans (75%) favor immigration in general, and are opposed to a border wall in particular.

But Carlson never lets facts get in the way of his rank bigotry. In the following exchange, Carlson let slip that he looks back longingly on a bygone era when white nationalists like himself reigned unencumbered by those pesky minorities demanding civil rights. Acevedo asked Carlson what period in the past he was advocating as superior to the present. Carlson replied:

Carlson: When I was born it was fine. It was a better country than it is now, in a lot of ways.
Acevedo: In what sense was it a better country? By what metric?
Carlson: It was a more cohesive country.
Acevedo: It was a less diverse country, maybe?
Carlson: No. It’s not about race. The middle-class was vibrant when I was born. It’s dying now. And [cutting him off] we’re out of time.

To the extent that the middle-class is less vibrant today, it’s due directly to the policies of Carlson’s Republican Party. Their agenda of tax cuts for the rich and regulation cuts for corporations is the single biggest factor in the shift of wealth from the middle-class to the top one percent. America’s economy is booming, but average Americans aren’t seeing any of the benefits. It’s a certainty that Carlson doesn’t want to roll that back.

As for his nostalgia, Carlson was born in 1969. That was just a few years after the Civil Rights Act was passed. The country was still unwinding the decades of Jim Crow laws that dominated most of the South. Martin Luther King was assassinated only one year prior and his work was far from over, as evidenced by his murder. There was one African-America senator, and only six members of the House. But that’s the wonderfully “cohesive” time that Carlson wishes America would return to. With this rhetoric it seems that he’s not even trying to disguise his racism anymore. And Fox News is apparently cool with that.

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

Protecting Trump? Fox News Buries Paul Manafort’s Cooperation and Plea Deal with Mueller Probe

There is no question that Hurricane Florence is the top story of Friday, September 14. The potential loss of life and billions of dollars in destruction are too serious a matter to under play. However, that doesn’t mean it’s the only story of the day. It most decidedly is not.

Donald Trump Fox News

On Friday morning, Donald Trump’s campaign chairman went into a courtroom in Washington where his lawyer announced that he had accepted a plea deal with special counsel Robert Mueller in order to avoid further legal jeopardy. This is particularly significant because the deal includes Manafort’s cooperation with prosecutors on other matters. According to ABC News:

“In court Friday morning, prosecutors revealed that Manafort had completed a successful meeting with investigators in which he offered them information they considered valuable. They did not specify what information he agreed to share, but made clear the cooperation would be ‘broad’ and would include participation in ‘interviews, briefings, producing documents, [and] testifying in other matters.'”

This development now gives Mueller a cooperating witness who was in the room at Trump Tower when Don Jr. and others met with Russian operatives seeking dirt on Hillary Clinton. That’s the core of the “witch hunt” charges of collusion that have been driving Trump’s batty for two years. Additionally, Manafort’s high position with the Trump campaign makes it likely that he has other incriminating information about Trump and company related to Russia, Wikileaks, and efforts to obstruct justice. It’s hard to overstate the trouble this news poses for Trump.

However, it is easy to understate it. And that’s exactly what State TV (aka Fox News) has been doing since the news broke. While Fox News did air a twenty-six second “alert” prior to the plea being announced in court, they have taken great pains to ignore it ever since. That alert had no details about the agreement and no notice of Manafort’s cooperation with Mueller. At the noon hour Shepard Smith took over. It took him an hour and twenty minutes to say anything about the Manafort case. And that segment was the last he said about it for at least the next hour and a half.

It’s no wonder that Fox News is determined to suppress this news. It puts Trump in a the awkward position of defending himself against another former associate who is turning state’s evidence. In this case, Trump had previously praised Manafort for his loyalty and bravery under pressure:

Well, so much for not breaking. If history is any indicator, Trump will shortly tweet about what a weasel Manafort is for making up these lies to cut a deal for himself. Then Trump will Insist that he hardly knew Manafort and he had little to do with Trump or his campaign. And that’s when Fox News will resume reporting on this subject. They will virtually ignore the substance of the legal controversy and focus on Trump’s rejection of the weak-kneed former campaign boss. The script just writes itself.

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

Tucker Carlson Gets Creamed By Stormy Daniels’ Lawyer, Michael Avenatti in Hilarious Fox News Throwdown

The single most repulsive character on the Fox News Cartoon Network is, without a doubt, Tucker Carlson. He has assumed the position of the Grand Wizard of the white nationalist movement with his frequent tirades that literally regurgitate the racist tropes of the hate mongers of the right. A recent example of that took place just last week on a show where Carlson couldn’t figure out how diversity strengthens America.

Fox News, Tucker Carlson, Michael Avenatti

But what occurred on Thursday night’s episode went even farther into the abyss off wingnuttery (video below). Carlson hosted Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, in a what turned into a demolition of Carlson’s already splintered reputation. It began with Carlson introducing some of the ground rules for the TV debate. He said that Avenatti…

“…”has now agreed to appear on our set provided we give him time to state his case, and of course we’re happy to do that. In the past he’s also demanded that we stop referring to him by a certain unflattering nickname [Creepy Porn Lawyer]. We haven’t agreed to that demand, but tonight, as a gesture of goodwill, we will not use that nickname, because we’re always grateful when guests are brave enough to show up in person, including in this case.”

So Carlson made two promises in order to get Avenatti to agree to appear on the program. And Carlson almost immediately broke both of them. His first interruption occurred within seconds of Avenatti’s response to the first question he was asked. And from the start, Carlson’s program featured chyrons that repeatedly used the “Creepy Porn Lawyer” epithet. It was a demonstration of the infantile nature of Carlson and the State TV outlet that employs him. Avenatti weighed in following the show:

Carlson asked his first question, which had to do with what the rational response would be to an act of cyber war by Russia. Avenatti began his answer by saying that “Well, Tucker, I understood that I was coming on your show tonight to talk about the case involving my client…” And that was as far as Avenatti got when Carlson burst in with his first interruption. Avenatti told Carlson that:

“You’ve gotta stop interrupting me, cause one of the conditions of me coming on tonight was that you were not going to do what you do routinely to guests, which is talk over them and interrupt them. So just let me finish with my answer.”

Then Carlson asked his question again, and Avenatti got a little further into his answer when Carlson again broke in, and Avenatti scolded him saying “There you go interrupting me again.” It’s clear how this interview was going to go from just these first few minutes. Avenatti was trying to give substantive responses to Carlson’s inquiries, but Carlson obviously didn’t like that Avenatti’s points included condemnations of Trump for colluding with Russia. So Carlson had to prevent that sort of truth from getting out to his willfully ignorant audience.

Despite Carlson’s introduction that claimed that he didn’t want to engage in insults, he excused his interruptions as “clarifications” because, as he stated, Avenatti didn’t understand the questions. But Avenatti wasn’t going to sit there and have Carlson call him stupid. He shot back at Carlson with a question of his own: “Why don’t you call Trump the creepy porn president” due to his having unprotected sex with a porn actress while his wife and four month old baby were at home. Carlson got glassy-eyed and stuttered as he tried to change the subject. Then, after acting like a wild buffoon, Carlson told Avenatti to “settle down.” It was hilarious.

Then Carlson goes totally off the rails with an assertion that makes no sense at all. He said that Avenatti should be paying his client, Stormy Daniels, because he has an expensive suit and she’s performing in strip clubs. Huh? What does that have to do with anything? Does Carlson think that any lawyer who is better off financially than his client should be giving the client money?

Avenatti then nailed Carlson for not knowing that Trump’s former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to two campaign finance felonies. Carlson tried to claim that they were not violations, but you can’t plead guilty to something that isn’t a crime. Having lost this point, Carlson swings back to why Daniels is performing in “depressing strip clubs,” as if it were Avenatti’s role to tell her what to do. Avenatti replied that she’s doing what she wants and that “This is America” and “if a women wants to perform in a strip club she does so even though people like you demean her.”

You know that Avenatti was winning this debate by the way that Carlson was losing his composure. He actually ended up yelling at Avenatti because he refused to allow Carlson to continually interrupt him. And when Avenatti grew tired of Carlson’s belittling of his client, he asked Carlson about his own porn habits. That shut Carlson up momentarily. And when Avenatti asked Carlson if he thought that people who view porn should watch his show, Carlson whimpered “I’m not even sure what that question means.” Then Carlson cut Avenatti off from responding to his closing lecture by declaring that he was out of time.

There is one lesson that everyone watching this segment ought to take to heart: No one should ever – for any reason – appear on Tucker Carlson’s program. He will lie to your face about the conditions of the agreement to appear. And then he will endeavor to steer the conversation to whatever tangential topic he thinks he can best malign you with. Avenatti actually handled Carlson brilliantly throughout the “interview,” but it was still an exercise in futility that accomplished nothing. Carlson’s mind can not be changed, and neither can the minds of his dimwitted viewers.

While there is a scant amount of comic relief from seeing Carlson squirm, it’s still unproductive and only serves to spike his ratings. That potentially gives him attention from a larger pool of Deplorables when he should be booted off the air for advancing the agenda of neo-Nazis and violent, racist extremists. The sooner he gets canned for advocating his race war, the better for America.

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

TFA: Eric Holder Slams Trump and Lou Dobbs of Fox News for Ignorant Tweet About the DOJ

One of the most fascinating aspects of Donald Trump’s dementia is how he frequently expresses something that has the effect of contradicting his intention. He did this recently in a tweet about his “witch hunt” delusion that actually affirmed it. And he did it again in a rant about the anonymous New York Times op-ed that validated the article’s warnings about his unfitness to serve.

Donald Trump, Eric Holder

Well, he’s done it again. On Tuesday morning, when the rest of America was deep in remembrance of the victims of 9/11, Trump decided he would go after his own Justice Department. And he did so with what he must regard as the worst possible indignity he could muster: comparing it to Obama’s Justice Department:

On the surface, what Trump is implying is that his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, was no better than his predecessor, Eric Holder. But this attempt at insulting Sessions could be interpreted another way. Trump might be saying, inadvertently of course, that the Justice Department is operating exactly as it should be. A change in administrations ought not to alter the mission of the agency, which is to be a nonpartisan seeker of facts and accountability for wrongdoing. So it should, in fact, not be any different under Sessions, than it was under Holder.

Trump, however, is wholly incapable of understanding anything as principled and anchored by ethics as that. What he was aiming at was the refusal of Sessions to turn the department into his own Office of Personal Persecution. Trump is livid that Sessions won’t lead an inquisition against Hillary Clinton and other Democrats who Trump, in his paranoid haze, believes are conspirators in a “Deep State” plot to dethrone him.

As for Holder, he noticed Trump’s harangue at Sessions and observed some differences between the current DoJ and the one that he led. Holder tweeted in response to Trump:

Indeed, Holder took his responsibilities seriously as the nation’s top law enforcement official. He dedicated his service to advancing the rights of all Americans and bringing criminals to justice. His closing acronym, “TFA,” was a reference to the 25th Amendment that provides for the removal of a president who is incapable of carrying out his duties.

Finally, Trump’s tweet was his second of the morning that quoted Lou Dobbs, the Fox News hack who is so infatuated with Trump that he signs most of his own tweets with the hashtags #MAGA and #TrumpTrain. Nothing like being fair and balanced. The other Dobbs quote posted by Trump said:

Needlass to say that is 100% false. There are mountains of evidence that connect Trump directly to Russia and people close to Vladimir Putin. And there is literally nothing that connects Clinton to Russia except for the partial funding of the Steele Dossier, which included sources that were Russian dissidents, not Kremlin operatives. That’s a huge difference.

All of this underscores the differences between what Eric Holder sees as an honest Justice Department and what Trump thinks should be an agency that is obedient to his tyrannical rule. Fortunately, that perverse vision isn’t being carried out – yet. But with Trump threatening to fire Sessions after the midterm elections, who knows.

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

White-Winger Tucker Carlson of Fox News Can’t Figure Out How Diversity Strengthens America

The enthusiasm with which Fox News has been embracing the racist themes of white nationalism has been observable for years. It was a constant feature on Bill O’Reilly’s program, as it is on Laura Ingraham’s. However, their adoption of this abhorrent political movement is accelerating on a daily basis throughout the Donald Trump presidency. And it’s unchallenged leader in this crusade is their primetime anchor, and man with “resting douchebag face,” Tucker Carlson.

Tucker Carlson Fox News

Carlson is having trouble understanding why diversity strengthens America. In Friday’s episode of his White Nationalism Hour on Fox News, Carlson played a video montage of President Obama and others praising the benefits of a diverse nation. After which, Carlson complained that he doesn’t “know exactly what it means other than ‘stop talking or else.'” How he got that from people advocating for more voices joining the public discussion is a mystery only a Grand Wizard can solve. But his whole segment on diversity was a holy mess of bigotry and ignorance. For example (video below):

“How, precisely, is diversity our strength? Since you’ve made this our new national motto, please be specific as you explain it. Can you think, for example, of other institutions – I don’t know – marriage or military units, in which the less people have in common the more cohesive they are. Do you get along better with your neighbors or your co-workers if you can’t understand each other, or share no common values?”

This is way to easy. First of all, is Carlson really using the military as an example of an institution where these is no diversity? America’s armed forces were desegregated in 1948 by President Harry Truman. And ever since then they have been a model for desegregating other sectors of public and private society. Does Carlson think our troops would be better off going back to forced separation based on race? Of course he does. That’s actually his point.

What’s more, Carlson also seems to be criticising the acceptance of interracial marriages. That’s another barrier that was legally overcome by the Loving v. Virginia decision by the Supreme Court in 1967. And it’s another human rights advancement that Carlson apparently wants to rollback.

His language in the sophomoric question he asks is revealing in itself. He implies that the purpose of encouraging diversity is “cohesiveness.” No, that’s the purpose of segregation and whites-only lunch counters. The purpose of diversity is expanding everyone’s understanding of a broader perspective of the world. It’s to combat exactly what Carlson thinks are obstacles to understanding each other. But in Carlson’s view our differences in skin color represent insurmountable conflicts in values. What freaking hell hole of a planet does he live on?

The fact that Fox News allows these types of flagrant white supremacy diatribes to go out on their network is an indication of their support for such repulsive tributes to prejudice and hatred. Tucker Carlson is just a petulant little jerkwad who’s views are aligned with the Klan. But Fox News runs a major cable “news” network that influences a significant faction of America’s Deplorables. And such a network must not be permitted to advance these hateful, ignorant notions without consequence. Their advertisers need to be shamed and shunned. The cable operators who carry the network need to hear from their subscribers that this hate speech is unacceptable.

Most importantly, conscientious people in public life must not grant Fox credibility by appearing on their racist programs. The network needs to be frozen out of decent society. Let them wallow in the filth of their regular cast of bigots. They can host Ann Coulter and Sebastian Gorka and Donald Trump and other white supremacists exclusively. That way it will always be easier to recognize the sleazeballs by their presence on the avowedly racist cable network.

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