Fox News and Trump Shill Kellyanne Conway Equate U.S. Media to Russian Election Tampering

The 2020 presidential election is approaching rapidly. And despite the problems with the 2016 election, Republicans are doing nothing to prevent Russia – or any other hostile foreign entity – from repeating efforts to interfere with America’s democracy. To the contrary, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell just blocked two bipartisan bills intended to protect the election. They are actually aiding and abetting the nefarious efforts of our enemies.

Kellyanne Conway, Fox News

It’s no wonder that the GOP is working on behalf of Russia. The Kremlin helped secure the victory of Donald Trump in 2016, and Republicans are well aware that they are unlikely to win in 2020 without more of that help. So the campaign is on by the Trump administration to pave the way for continued hacking and tampering in the upcoming election. He has decimated the Justice Department’s counterintelligence operations. He has installed hyper-loyal allies in critical White House posts. And, as usual, he is attacking the free press in order to keep the American people from learning the truth about his conspiracies with his BFF Vladimir Putin.

On Monday morning, Trump’s Senior Counselor and Chief Alternative Facts Dispenser, Kellyanne Conway, appeared on Trump’s favorite Fox News program, Fox and Friends. And she wasted no time in declaring that the American media is no different than Russian spies when it comes to to meddling in U.S. elections (video below):

“This President is very concerned about foreign interference in elections. We don’t want Russia to interfere. We don’t want China. But you know what? We also don’t want the mainstream media to interfere in the elections this time either, like they tried to do last time. Get your thumb off the electoral scale. Let people fight it out fairly and squarely.”

Conway’s message was clear: American journalists are unpatriotic agents of evil who are intent on destroying democracy. They are to be feared and, if necessary, silenced to prevent them from engaging in their anti-American plots. Conway regards the collection and dissemination of news to be a dangerous pursuit that must be shut down.

And why wouldn’t she think that? The more we find out about Trump and his unlawful activities throughout his campaign and presidency, as well as his efforts to obstruct justice with lies and failures to cooperate, the closer he is to impeachment and possible incarceration. So while Trump is repeatedly referring to the free press in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people,” his designated mouthpieces are equating reporters with Russian spies.

What Conway and her boss are really afraid of is that the American people will discover the depths of criminality to which Trump and company have sunk. They aren’t concerned about the media putting their thumb on the electoral scale. They are concerned that their own thumbs aren’t pushing down hard enough. What does she think Fox News is doing all day and night with their obsequious fawning over Trump and disparaging of anyone who offers the slightest criticism.

Trump was exposed in the recent congressional hearings with Robert Mueller for “welcoming and encouraging” election help from Russia, as well as lying to cover it up. And he’s getting ready to do it again. Why not? There have, as yet, been no consequences for his prior crimes. He’s even so brazen about it that he told George Stephanopoulos of ABC News that he would not refuse help from Russia in future campaigns. How is that not treason?

All of this has been excused by State TV (aka Fox News), who seem to have no issues with the President revealing in advance his intention to commit crimes. This makes Fox News complicit with those crimes. This flagrantly biased Trump-fluffing by Fox should be considered in-kind contributions to the Trump campaign and monitored by the Federal Elections Commission. And Conway, who has her own legal problems for repeatedly campaigning in the course of her official duties (a violation of the Hatch Act), should be serving in the Big House, not 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.

Under Fire for Racism and Facing Impeachment, Trump is Sucking Harder on His Fox News Pacifier

Let’s get this out of the way from the start: Donald Trump is a straight up racist who is fomenting hatred in America by stoking the bigotry of his white nationalists supporters. That is evident in his ever increasing rhetoric that attacks almost exclusively people of color in Congress and in American cities. But Trump isn’t parading down that heinous path alone.

Donald Trump, Phone, Pacifier

As the well deserved tsunami of criticism crests over Trump’s Crusade of Deplorables, he’s finding refuge in a familiar fox hole. Literally. Trump is leaning more heavily on Fox News for validation than ever. Which is astonishing since for years he has been leaning at angle that defies gravity. Trump began sucking on his Fox News pacifier long before he was a candidate for president. He had a weekly segment on Fox and Friends called “Mondays with Trump.” And after entering the White House he has circled the Fox wagons around him by appointing Fox alum to high posts in his administration. Likewise, former Trump associates quickly scurried over to Fox for work after leaving the White House.

The latest tantrum thrown by our Kindergarten President featured what most objective analysts recognize as flagrant racism. Trump’s attack on Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland was littered with the language of fascists who stir up their stormtroopers by dehumanizing those they despise and portraying them as vermin. But Trump didn’t just wake up and decide to viciously malign the chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Although that wouldn’t have been surprising since the committee is currently holding hearings to pull the sheets off of his numerous criminal activities.

Nope. Trump was triggered by a segment on Fox News that was deliberately laying the groundwork for his racist tirade. But Fox’s role in this is not limited to field research for the Grand Wizard of the White House. They play a much larger part in the wingnut fog that surrounds the President. So now when Trump’s moral depravity is being punished by decent Americans, Big Baby Trump is hiding behind the petticoats of Fox News.

This weekend alone Trump has posted videos or other references to Fox News nine times. It’s a parade of the usual suspects. Trump tweeted Jeanine Pirro three times, Mike Levin, twice, along with Louis Gohmert, Jesse Watters, and Pete Hegseth of Fox and Friends. There weren’t any posts by Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham because they aren’t on the air on the weekend. But rest assured, they are in Trump’s so-called heart.

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

This happens every time Trump finds himself in trouble. He can’t articulate a coherent thought, so he relies on the simple-minded blather from his confederates on State TV. Even when he tweets some sort of self-defense, it is usually purloined from the ravings of someone he just saw on Fox. Trump would not be president today were it not for Fox News. And he could not survive another week if they went off the air. Fox News is Trump’s respirator. He is already brain dead, but being kept alive politically by the propaganda machine to which he is attached.

REALLY? Trump Says Fox News Polls ‘Have Always Been Terrible to Me’ – Let’s Go to the Tweets

It’s only been one day since Donald Trump was gleefully bragging about the results of a Fox News poll that said his approval on the economy was 52 percent. Never mind that the same poll showed him in negative territory on almost everything else, including overall favorability and most of his signature issues. Trump, like all narcissists, only sees what he wants to see.

Donald Trump, Fox News, Fake

Today Trump is whining about additional results released from the Fox poll that show him getting crushed by Joe Biden. The poll also has him getting beat by Bernie Sanders and in statistical ties with Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris. Naturally, this insult to his bloated ego incited a tantrum on Twitter aimed at maligning his own State TV network:

First of all, Trump’s reference to Fox News when he says they were supportive of him as “Proud Warriors” is an unabashed confession that he regards them as being the propaganda battalion of his political army. And their betrayal is an unforgivable sin that cannot be ignored. Consequently, he is now lambasting them as traitors who are part of the “Lamestream Media in Collusion with Crooked and the Democrat Party.” Proving, once again, that all it takes is one less than flattering remark for Trump to explode with outrage and accuse you of treason.

As for Fox News always being terrible for Trump, that is not an opinion that he has held with much consistency. To the contrary, he has often praised the Fox News polls and thank the network for their obedient adulation. For instance:

For each of these tweets Trump had to either misrepresent the actual poll results, or cherry pick them to feature only the parts that he liked. The one lauding 40 percent approval by African-Americans was an outright lie. The one about the FBI breaking the law was deceitfully manipulated by Trump. He combined several different responses into one to arrive at 58 percent. If the responses were split into fair groupings the result would be 38-51 against the assertion that any intelligence agency had broken the law. And the one bragging about a Fox News poll putting his approval at 50 percent was actually Fox News reporting on a poll by the notoriously biased Rasmussen.

What is abundantly clear is that Trump has been more than pleased with the results of Fox News polls in the past. But when one is less than adoring he flips out and insists that they have always had it in for him. That’s a sign of a severe mental infirmity consistent with narcissism, paranoia, and sociopathic disengagement from reality.

There is nothing about this latest Fox poll that is out of line with most other polls. Even Trump’s surveying savior, Rasmussen, shows Trump with a majority 51 percent disapproval. Notably, Rasmussen had Trump at 50 percent approval the day before the congressional testimony of Robert Mueller. And he has declined every day since. In Rasmussen’s poll!

So the public perception of Trump was not helped by Mueller’s damning affirmation of Trump’s criminal behavior. Trump wasn’t helped by the testimony that he welcomed and encouraged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Nor was Trump’s reputation aided by Mueller’s explicit description of his actions as constituting obstruction of justice.

The fact that Fox News pollsters managed to produce a relatively accurate representation of the public mood has sent Trump into a fit of acrimony. He is flagrantly in denial of reality and flailing wildly in a attempt to reshape the world into one that loves him unconditionally. And to the extent that he fails at that, his critics, even friendly ones, become his bitterest foes. Every Trump supporter needs to remember that, no matter who you are or how worshipful you’ve been in the past, if you backslide for even a moment you become the enemy of the people. That’s life in the Cult of Trump.

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

Trump is Plunging Into a Desperate Dependence on Fox News that’s Downright Creepy

In the wake of special counsel Robert Mueller’s congressional testimony, Donald Trump has rushed to buttress the barricades of his propaganda crusade. In practical terms that means hyping the crap out of every Trump-fluffing shill he sees on Fox News. And he may have set a record for posting tweets that are flagrantly fawning by the bootlickers at his favorite cable “news” network.

Donald Trump, Fox News, Hate Again

In the few hours since the Mueller hearings concluded, Trump posted sixteen (16!) tweets referencing – and even explicitly thanking – Fox News and their stable of pro-Trump PR toadies. They included disseminating White House talking points about the hearings being “a disaster.” And there were the obligatory lies about “no obstruction, no collusion,” even though Mueller said precisely the opposite. He posted eight videos of segments from Fox that were nothing more than drooling sycophancy, and quotes from the devoutly anti-intellectual “Curvy Couch” potatoes on Fox and Friends.

There were also a couple of prideful postings of a new Fox News poll. Trump celebrated that the poll gave him a 52 percent approval rating on the economy. Never mind that the economy has been in the midst of the longest bull market in history that began ten years ago during the Obama administration. And it performed better in the last two years of Obama’s term than in the first two years of Trump’s.

More importantly, the same poll showed that Trump was severely underwater on almost everything else, including most of his signature issues. For instance, favorability (45 approve – 51 disapprove), border security (44-52), immigration (41-54), trade (40-49), Iran (39-46), North Korea (39-49), and health care (38-51). But Trump was never very good at figuring out stuff as complicated as polls. Our “stable genius” in the White House can only comprehend surveys that are unflinchingly adoring.

The relationship between Trump and Fox News has always been an unethical convergence of media and politics. Fox News is the de facto State TV division of the Trump regime. At any given moment, Fox is either promoting Trump as the new Messiah, or attacking his critics as spawns of Satan. Although, Fox will sometimes complain that they are miscast as biased, and there are even some rare examples of independent thought.

But the biggest impediments to Fox News being perceived as “fair and balanced” (a ludicrous slogan that they abandoned two years ago) are Fox News and Donald Trump. They will always manage to reinforce their conspicuous and disgraceful perversion of the free press. Either Trump will come along to prove that Fox is his personal PR agency with the sort of tweeting frenzy he just unleashed, or Fox will fill their schedule with what can only be described as pro-Trump campaign ads disguised as news programs.

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

The Fox News/Trump Nationalist Party is not only unprecedented, it’s dangerous. It produces a false narrative among the cultists who adhere it that embraces hostility and division, excuses lying, encourages ignorance and willful obliviousness to bona fide national security threats, and turns a sector of the electorate into, essentially, advocates for America’s enemies. And it’s led by a Reality TV game show host who said that he has no time for TV, despite having plenty of time to post tweets of what he is supposedly not viewing.

UPDATE: It only took one day for Trump to figure out that the new Fox Poll was not good news for him. So of course, he lashed out on Twitter against Fox polls which he says “have always been terrible to me.” But don’t worry, the Whiner-in-Chief will return to slobbering over Hannity and Company before you know it.

SO WHAT? Fox News Trump-Fluffer Read the Mueller Report and (Surprise) Found Nothing

The desperation of Donald Trump seems to be escalating with each new day and frantic tweet. This may be exacerbated by the upcoming congressional hearings featuring testimony by special counsel Robert Mueller. That has clearly been dominating what precious little comprehension capability Trump has. It has overtaken his obsession with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and “The Squad,” which he has only been exploiting as a method of distraction anyway.

Donald Trump, Fox News, Strange

On Monday Trump demonstrated just how frightened he is of the Mueller hearings. He tweeted a quote from Fox Business anchor Trish Regan that, for some bizarre reason, he thinks should settle the debate on whether Mueller found any evidence of collusion and/or obstruction of justice:

This may be one of the most supremely useless tweets Trump has ever posted. It is substantively vacant, providing no information whatsoever to support its premise. And it’s exactly the sort of biased propaganda that makes Fox News such a disreputable source for anything other than Trump happy talk.

In the segment, Regan summed up her perspective on the entire Mueller investigations saying that it was a “lousy thing to do to the American people and the President of the United States.” And her guests were equally as servile to Trump’s ego. Jenna Ellis Rives, a Trump 2020 campaign advisory board member, said that the 95 Democrats who voted to impeach Trump should all be impeached themselves. For casting votes? Pete Hegseth, of Fox and Friends, said that Democrats are hoping that Mueller will “slip up” during his congressional testimony. How? By letting the truth about Trump’s crimes slip out?

It requires a massive amount of self-delusion to conclude that there is nothing in Mueller’s report that incriminates Trump. There’s plenty. Including evidence of conspiracies by Trump and his associates with unsavory Russian characters. And Mueller enumerated at least ten instances of obstruction of justice. But most damning for Regan – and by extension, Trump – is that even some at Fox News have seen the light. You have to wonder why Trump didn’t post quote-tweets about these comments:

Bret Baier, the Chief Political Anchor on Fox News, offered his analysis after Mueller’s public statement. Baier blasted Barr’s misrepresentation of the Mueller report saying that it was more nuanced than Barr’s portrayal and “In fact, it was almost exactly the opposite.” He elaborated saying:

“I was struck by the tone and tenor of those remarks as he laid out his case wrapping up this report. This was not, as the president says time and time again, ‘no collusion, no obstruction.’ It was much more nuanced than that. […] He said specifically that if they had found that the President did not commit a crime on obstruction, they would have said that.”

Fox News Senior Legal Analyst, Andrew Napolitano, has made a number of observations that provide legal confirmation of Trump’s guilt. For instance:

“Mueller laid out at least a half-dozen crimes of obstruction committed by Trump […] The president’s job is to enforce federal law. If he had ordered its violation to save innocent life or preserve human freedom, he would have a moral defense. But ordering obstruction to save himself from the consequences of his own behavior is unlawful, defenseless and condemnable.”

And then there was this:

“While there was some evidence of collaboration between Russian agents and the Trump campaign – like 127 telephone communications between them – there was not enough evidence to establish the crime of conspiracy.” […]

“If the subject of a criminal investigation tells the people that work for him to lie to the FBI and falsify evidence so that the FBI will not find out whatever the subject does not want them to know – as Mueller said Trump did between ten and eleven times – that is obstruction of justice and it is for a corrupt purpose.”

The Chief News Anchor and Managing Editor of the Fox News breaking news division, Shepard Smith, also weighed in with remarks that undermined Trump’s attacks on the Mueller probe. Specifically, Smith pointed out that the dossier by Christopher Steele was not the tainted documented that Sean Hannity and others have tried to paint it as:

“While the U.S. intelligence community has not confirmed parts of the dossier, there are elements of it that are confirmed true. No part of it, to Fox News’ knowledge, has been confirmed false.”

Given those comments by the most senior people at Fox News, Regan’s mushy remarks seem even more absurd and obsequious. And Trump’s promotion of them is simply more proof of the narcissistic fetish that defines his warped personality. It’s a certainty that we will be seeing more of this from Fox StormTrumpers like Sean Hannity as Trump’s fortunes continue to decline. In fact, be prepared for it to get even worse as Trump’s mental state deteriorates.

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

On Fox News Kellyanne Conway Calls Democrats a ‘Dark Underbelly’ Who ‘Pal Around with Terrorists’

The obvious and nauseating bigotry of Donald Trump has been erupting like a flaming volcano of racism for several days now. The latest Vesuvial blast began with Trump’s heinous demands that a group of four congressional women of color should “go back” to where they came from. Never mind that they are all U.S. citizens, three of whom were born here. He further disparaged these elected representatives and proud Americans as communists who hate the country.

Kellyanne Conway, Fox News

On Tuesday morning Trump responded to the near unanimous condemnation of his hate speech by unleashing one of his typical tweetstorms, doubling down on his abhorrent “love it or leave it” diatribe. He posted seven tweets on this subject alone, exposing how desperately afraid he is and driven to malign anyone who dares to criticize him. He even whined about a proposed bill of censure in congress to denounce his loathsome remarks.

Remember, this is a President who, when asked if he was concerned that white nationalists find common cause with his comments, he replied, “It doesn’t concern me at all because many people agree with me.” He’s right. A lot of white nationalists do agree with him. They are, in fact, his base.

Also on Tuesday morning Trump’s Senior White House Counselor, Kellyanne Conway, managed to make matters even worse. She was “interviewed” on Fox News (video below) where she performed her famous filibuster routine, refusing to allow even the friendly Trump-fluffers of Fox to get a word in. And in this harangue, Conway let loose some more racist dog whistles to earn the affection of Trump and his Deplorables. Referring to the four Democratic women known as “The Squad,” Conway said that…

“They represent a dark underbelly in this country […] We’re tired of some of these women palling around with terrorists.”

The audacity of these people is shocking. Conway had no reservations whatsoever about highlighting the “darkness” of the critics she was so intent on vilifying and dehumanizing. And her reckless accusation of an imaginary terrorist affiliation is the sort of thing generally reserved for fascist propagandists. It is also a retread of Sarah Palin’s slanderous yelping at President Obama. The Fox News hosts didn’t react or follow up on these sick statements at all. Of course, Trump said much the same thing yesterday when he explicitly – and falsely – asserted that Rep. Ilhan Omar expressed pro-Al Qaeda sentiments. But Conway wasn’t finished with her crusade of defamation. She defended Trump’s racist tweet tantrum saying that…

“The President explained what he meant by those. The President explained that if you don’t like it here get out. That, by the way, goes way beyond these four people. That goes to everybody who’s tearing down the American flag and putting up the Mexican flag.”

How does that make anything better? Conway merely expanded the scope of her racism to include even more people. And she did it with a straw man argument that has no basis in reality. None of the Democrats she and Trump have been attacking have ever torn down an American flag or replaced it with any other. She fundamentally misunderstands the principle that dissent is patriotic in a healthy democracy. Trump also doesn’t get it, even though his past is one of unrelenting dissent and disparagement of America. He even called it a “Hell Hole” during his campaign.

Kellyanne might learn something from her husband George Conway, who wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post aptly titled “Trump is a Racist President.” But it is totally implausible that she would grasp the insight her husband is offering. Nevertheless, Conway did hit on a moment of truth during this segment when she complained that “People are analogizing a red hat to a swastika.” However, she utterly missed the fact that this analogy is only being put forth because of how accurate it is.

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

Trump in a Panic Sweat Posts 13 Lie-Riddled Tweets About – Get This – Hillary’s Emails

There is nothing more telling than a Donald Trump Tweetstorm. It reveals what he’s most afraid of and what is consuming his fevered and demented imagination. So it shouldn’t be dismissed when he posts a flurry of thirteen tweets by the disreputable and dishonest StormTrumpers at Judicial Watch. Particularly when the content of those tweets are predominantly the ancient right-wing obsessions over Hillary Clinton’s emails. Are these people serious?

Donald Trump Sweating

Unfortunately, the conservative junkies who are still addicted to fables about Clinton’s emails are deadly serious. They are feeding a fetish that borders on being a psychotic compulsion. And they bring it up whenever they feel threatened by the onslaught of inconvenient facts that challenge their demented world view. And Trump is among those suffering from this manic neurosis.

The symptoms of Trump’s mental disorder were on full display Saturday morning. The thirteen retweets of Judicial Watch propaganda must have seemed like the perfect antidote to the realities in the news that were so unpleasant for him. He just lost another one of his unethical cabinet flunkies (a record breaking achievement), Alexander Acosta, due to his relationship with pedophile rapist Jeffrey Epstein. Of course, Trump had his own relationship with Epstein who he said was a terrific guy.

Trump is also weathering a storm of criticism due his policy of caging children in inhumane conditions. And he is dreading the upcoming congressional testimony of special counsel Robert Mueller. All of this is taking place as the 2020 presidential campaign is beginning with Trump losing in the polls to all of the top Democrats. Consequently, Trump, in a fit of sheer desperation, completes his re-tweetstorm with a comment of his own:

We are sadly witnessing the shameful spectacle of a president making explicit accusations of criminality about an honorable, lifelong public servant in law enforcement. Even worse, this is a charge that has been debunked repeatedly when Trump has made it in the past. Most recently Trump attacked Mueller on this during an “interview” (more of a tongue bath) with Fox News Trump-fluffer Maria Bartiromo in June:

“Mueller terminated them illegally. He terminated the emails, he terminated all of the stuff between Strzok and Page. Robert Mueller terminated their text messages together. He terminated them. They’re gone. And that’s illegal. That’s a crime.”

Setting aside the cognitive dysfunction that Trump thinks texts can be “terminated,” everything else in that comment is provably false. And Trump surely knew that his charges were false because they were refuted when he made the very same remarks last december:

In fact, this lie was shot down by the Inspector General of Trump’s own Justice Department. It was reviewed by fact checkers who unanimously concluded that it was false. And it was rated as Pants on Fire by PolitiFact, who wrote that:

“First, a new report from the Justice Department’s internal watchdog suggests the roughly 19,000 messages slipped through the cracks due to technical glitches with the FBI’s data-collection tool on Samsung devices, not because Strzok and Page went around the system.

“Second, perhaps most importantly, while the messages were initially not captured, they have since been recovered. Trump’s claim gives the false impression the texts are still unaccounted.”

Trump’s fear is obviously getting the better of him. It shows in his rambling, disoriented speeches, his glassy-eyed engagement with the press while his helicopter whirs in the background, and these rabid outbursts on Twitter.

In addition to the Mueller-related tweets, and the Hillary bashing, Trump also posted three tweets that comprised nearly half of Sean Hannity’s Hour of Lies on Friday night. His Twitter feed is becoming the Internet’s channel for Fox News reruns. Which Fox surely appreciates since they stopped posting on Twitter entirely last November. Trump is, in effect, the PR executive for Fox News. And Fox pays him handsomely for that with nauseatingly fawning tributes 24/7. It’s a mutually beneficial, albeit sick and dishonest, arrangement.

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

The Fake Fox News Story About Seth Rich Was Planted By Russia and Promoted By Hannity

Michael Isikoff of Yahoo News has just published an extensive investigative report revealing that the bogus story about the murder of the Democratic National Committee staffer, Seth Rich, was originally planted by Russian intelligence. (Insert SHOCKED! face here). This was a completely fabricated piece of actual fake news that was prominently pushed by Fox News, and particularly Sean Hannity.

Fox News, Sean Hannity, Vladimir Putin

The article by Isikoff went into stark detail about the origins of the callous claims that Rich was actually the source of hacked emails the were published by Wikileaks. Those who told and spread these lies had no compassion whatsoever for the family that was grieving the loss of a loved one. Likewise, they didn’t care that they were disseminating falsehoods created by Russian spies intended to disrupt an American presidential election. Isikoff reported that

“The conspiracy claims reached their zenith in May 2017 — the same week as Mueller’s appointment as special counsel in the Russia probe — when Fox News’ website posted a sensational story claiming that an FBI forensic report had discovered evidence on Rich’s laptop that he had been in communication with WikiLeaks prior to his death. Sean Hannity, the network’s primetime star, treated the account as major news on his nightly broadcast, calling it ‘explosive’ and proclaiming it ‘might expose the single biggest fraud, lies, perpetrated on the American people by the media and the Democrats in our history.'”

“In fact, the Fox story was a ‘complete fabrication,’ said [U.S. attorney Deborah] Sines, who consulted with the FBI about the Fox News claims. There was ‘no connection between Seth and WikiLeaks. And there was no evidence on his work computer of him downloading and disseminating things from the DNC.'”

In an interview on MSNBC, Isikoff elaborated on what his investigation uncovered (video below):

“The timing is so interesting here. The week that this breaks on Fox News, in the story they later had to retract and acknowledged didn’t ‘meet their editorial standards,’ Sean Hannity is shouting it from the rooftops. What’s going on that week? It’s the week that [special counsel Robert] Mueller was appointed. It’s the week [FBI Director James] Comey was fired. It’s when the Russia story was blowing up.”

Isikoff noted that Hannity’s guest was Trump’s attorney for the Russia affair, Jay Sekulow. He had just been hired by Trump, but Hannity left that fact out of the segment. Together they were pushing the phony Rich story as a means to undercut the Russia narrative.

Fox News later issued a mushy retraction that admitted no fault. They said they would conduct an internal investigation to ascertain where they went wrong, but any findings from the alleged investigation remain undisclosed. However, Hannity never conceded any wrongdoing at all. To the contrary, he insisted that his “reporting” was accurate and would continue:

“I am not Fox.com or FoxNews.com, I retracted nothing. For those accusing me of pushing a conspiracy theory, you are the biggest phony hypocrites in the entire world. This issue, it’s so big now that the entire Russia collusion narrative is hanging by a thread. […] These are questions that I have a moral obligation to ask, and I will do the mainstream media’s job like I have most of my career.”

True to form, Hannity never did retract his lies about Rich. But he did delete all of his tweets about Rich (you can still see them here). He is exhibiting the same dishonesty, arrogance, and stubbornness as his bestie in the White House, Donald Trump. They both will cling to the most ludicrous assertions, even after they have been proven to be utterly false. The truth plays no part in their determined propaganda crusades. And neither does patriotism, as both Hannity and Trump have now been been shown to be willing confederates (aka “useful idiots”) of covert Russian operations.

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

Trump Goes Off (His Meds) on a Crazed Anti-Media Tweet Tantrum Against – Fox News?

It must be extraordinarily difficult for the President of the United States to get through every weekend without being fawned over by his most devoted supporters and promoters: the weekday primetime hosts on Fox News (aka State TV). Donald Trump’s notoriously fragile ego needs constant stroking or it erupts in an explosion of nonsensical ravings and unbound hostility from his Twitter stronghold.

Donald Trump, Fox News, Strange

That’s the sensitive psychological condition that Trump found himself in on Sunday night when he unleashed a torrent of tweets bursting with self pity and anger at an unfair world that wasn’t sufficiently adoring. This hissy twit included an unexpected barrage of animus aimed squarely at Trump’s media confederates at Fox News. It’s not the first time, but it’s one of the most extended and shrill. And it’s a warning to Fox that if you dare to stray from Trumpian orthodoxy, you are officially guilty of betraying the cause of white-wing nationalism, and Trump personally. It’s Trump’s admission that he regards Fox News as his personal publicity shop. The substance of this tweetstorm is so profoundly disturbing that we can just let it speak for itself.

Poor Trump is suffering the brutal symptoms of withdrawal due to the lack of his weekday Trump-fluffers: Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Tucker Carlson, and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends. Apparently Jeanine Pirro and Mark Levin aren’t sufficient to get him through these lonely weekends. But does he have to be so cruel as to call the Fox weekenders worse than CNN? That’s a low blow coming from Trump.

Deprived of his State TV babysitters, Trump whines about the brass at Comcast. He’s referring to Chairman and CEO of Comcast Brian Roberts and NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke. And he apparently believes that they tell everyone on NBC what to say. That must be because that’s the way the propaganda machine at Fox News operates, so he thinks real news organizations do the same.

He also unloads on what he says was a boring Democratic primary debate. Never mind that it was the most watched Democratic debate in history and drew more viewers on the second night than the first, which is not generally an indicator that the viewers were bored. Then Trump takes an odd, leftfield swipe at the New York Times because, well, what anti-media Trump rant would be complete without it?

Next, Trump takes aim directly at Fox News again, this time accusing them of having “forgot the people who got them there!” As if the network is obligated to behave in the manner that Trump demands or it’s being disloyal. That sentiment is extended with Trump’s complaint that Fox hired Donna Brazile, a former Democratic Party official. He lies about her having given Hillary Clinton debate questions during the 2016 Democratic primary. In fact, Brazile never had any actual debate questions. She only gave Clinton a list of topics and questions that she assumed would be covered. That’s still improper for a CNN contributor who was supposed to be unaffiliated, but it isn’t the same as stealing actual questions and handing them over to a candidate. Ironically, that’s an accusation that was levelled at Fox News for tipping off Trump before a GOP debate.

Finally, Trump insults all of the dayside Fox anchors as “terrible” and takes a swing at Fox’s chief news anchor and managing editor of breaking news, Shepard Smith. Considering how often Smith debunks Trump’s lies, that isn’t surprising. Take, for instance, this brutal fact check on Trump’s lies about Russian collusion. But then he closes this manic episode by proclaiming that he knows what the Fox News audience wants and that Fox is failing in its duty to be a staunchly partisan right-wing mouthpiece by not bending obediently to the bias that Trump thinks is required of them.

It’s difficult to be certain exactly what triggered this meltdown, but it doesn’t take much to set Trump off these days. He is becoming more frightened and unstable with each new poll that shows him losing in 2020, and each new revelation of his rampant criminal activity, including the arrest of his pal Jeffrey Epstein for sex trafficking.

However, there was an entertaining bit of “news” made on Fox Sunday when reporter Greg Palkot was covering reaction to the U.S. winning the World Cup. He was live from a sports bar in Lyon, France when the crowd began chanting “F*** Trump.” Then Palkot interviewed an American patron who cheered the U.S. team’s victory and then proudly exclaimed “Now we need to win in 2020, Democrats. Get that racist out of the White House.” That’s surely something that would gnaw at Trump if he saw it. But it warms the hearts of every truly patriotic American who can’t wait for Trump to booted from office whether by losing an election or well deserved impeachment.

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

Fox News on Trump Hijacking the 4th of July: ‘You Can’t Hijack Something You Already Own’

The fact that millions of Americans are disgusted by Donald Trump’s brazen exploitation of Independence Day is reason enough for him to cancel his plans to turn the celebration into a tribute to himself. But then that wouldn’t be the Trump that America has come to know and despise. Instead, he is moving forward with the “Trump Day” affair and ignoring how offensive and divisive it is.

Donald Trump, Immigrant, Child

So naturally, Fox News is coming to Trump’s defense as they always do. The State TV network is speaking in glowing terms about the perverse brand of patriotism that Trump is peddling. They aren’t the least bit bothered by this being the first time that the Fourth of July has been exploited for purely political purposes. In fact, they are portraying it as even more patriotic than ever because to them Trump represents the true meaning of America. That sentiment was expressed clearly by Fox News host, and cranky court jester, Jesse Watters (video below):

“You can’t hijack something you already own. The last time I checked, the president is an American, and he’s an American president. But the left falls into this trap all the time. […] They’re against whatever he does, and now they just look unpatriotic.”

So according to Watters, Trump “already owns” the Fourth of July. Therefore, any criticism of him or his actions is deemed “unpatriotic” by Watters and the rest of the Fox Newsies who didn’t object to this abhorrent commentary. And if you own the holiday you are allowed to stain it with partisanship, self-exaltations, and military parades that recall the brutal, war mongering dictatorships that Trump is so fond of.

Watters went on to say that Trump “adores the military” and is “very into the pomp and the pageantry.” Of course. And Trump displays that adoration by maligning POWs for having been captured, insulting Gold Star families who are not Trump sycophants, terminating healthcare and other services for vets, lying to soldiers about wages and other benefits that Trump falsely claimed to have provided, and deporting veterans who served in combat despite not being citizens.

For this Independence Day Trump is unashamedly politicizing the event by offering preferred seating for Republican supporters and donors. He is forcing the military to participate in Soviet-style parades of weaponry. And he even declined to invite the service chiefs for the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.

But this is what Fox News considers patriotic behavior. They embrace emulating the militarism of our enemies. They praise the viciously partisan current occupant of the White House and his Republican Nationalist Party. They exclude the majority of Americans who are repulsed by Trump and his Doctrine of Hate. And they declare that a hostile, ignorant, bigoted, infantile, five-time draft dodger “owns” the holiday commemorating independence, freedom, and the sacrifices of those who secured and preserve it. Nice work Fox.

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