CNN President Blisters State-Run TV (aka Fox News) as ‘a Pure Propaganda Machine’

Two decades ago a conservative media mogul (Rupert Murdoch) and a right-ring political operative (Roger Ailes) colluded to form America’s first overtly partisan news network devoted to advancing a regressive agenda that favored corporations and the wealthy. And ever since Fox News has faithfully served it’s masters, all the while pretending to be “fair and balanced” journalists.

Donald Trump Fox News

For most of that time the rest of the media sheepishly approached Fox News as just another competitor. They rarely spoke honestly about how Fox was deliberately staining the one profession explicitly cited in the Constitution. Consequently, Fox got away with a lot of brazenly biased propaganda and managed to corral America’s Deplorables into a media pen where they felt safe and secure.

So it was rather surprising to hear CNN president Jeff Zucker’s criticism of Fox at the Financial Times’ “Future of News” conference on Thursday. He nailed Fox News in a way that few media executives have in the past twenty years. While nothing he said would be a revelation to anyone who has watched the network for more than two minutes, coming from a corporate media honcho it is borderline breathtaking. Here’s a quick summary of the highlights as reported by The Hollywood Reporter:

    Zucker said that…

  • Fox News “is really state-run TV. It is a pure propaganda machine, and I think does incredible disservice to this country.”
  • “The idea that it’s a news channel, I think, is really not the case at all.”
  • Fox News “has nothing on” the Russian government-run TASS Russian News Agency.
  • “I think they are lost in what is a complete propaganda machine.”

In addition, THR reports Zucker saying that “Fox News has changed substantially in the last two years, following the departure of late founder Roger Ailes. He described the change at the network as ‘shocking.'” However the only thing that might have changed is that in the post-Ailes era the executives at Fox were much less skilled at spewing rightist bullshit. Their deceitful machinations are more visible and sleazy. That may be what drove long-time Fox contributor Ralph Peters to quit the network that he now says he is “ashamed” to be associated with. According to THR Fox News was invited to participate in the event but declined.

Fox News continues to be the mouthpiece of the Republican Party and Donald Trump’s most dedicated defender. It serves as the personnel recruiting pool for the Trump administration. Among those tapped by Trump for White House posts were Heather Nauert, K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastian Gorka, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel. And just today Trump announced that Fox’s John Bolton will replace H.R. McMaster as his National Security Advisor. And even his legal team is now being stuffed with Fox News personalities, including Joseph DiGenova and, maybe his wife, Victoria Toensing.

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

CNN is not without its share of journalistic failures. They were among the news outlets that plastered the airwaves with Trump’s thoroughly un-newsworthy rallies (rants) during the campaign. And they still host Trump-fluffing flacks who are only there to further disseminate Trump’s lies. However, there has never been a presidential administration that was so rife with media shills from a single source. The only people that Trump recognizes are those he’s seen on TV. And the only TV he watches is Fox News. So after a year in office he still behaves like an intellectually shallow reality TV game show host, rather than the president that our nation needs. Hopefully he will be voted off this island soon by Robert Mueller’s team of Survivors.

Sean Hannity Lost What Was Left of His Alleged Mind in Bonkers Fox and Friends Spot

Some things just have to be seen to be believed – and even then it’s not always believable. Other times it takes too strong a stomach to even sit through the unbelievable thing. Sean Hannity of Fox News has generously provided examples of all of the above.

Fox News Sean Hannity

On Monday morning Hannity visited his colleagues at Fox and Friends to unload a pile defenses for his beleaguered Messiah, Donald Trump. The world around the President must seem to be falling apart as new revelations concerning his unsavory connections to Russia keep spilling out. Trump himself is in pure panic mode and is posting tweets that affirm his guilty conscience. So he is in dire need of a valiant defender to come to his aid. Unfortunately, all he has is the Doofus Squad on Fox and Friends and Sean Hannity.

Hannity’s segment with the “Curvy Couch” potatoes went off the rails from the start. What follows is his run-on, addled-brain meltdown just as it occurred on the air. Buckle in (video below):

“You’ve got the whole issue of Christopher Steele. You know, all this talk about Trump/Russia collusion, the only person that colluded in that campaign with the Russians, was Hillary Clinton. Hillary Clinton bought and paid for what turned out to be Russian lies. She fixes a primary election against Bernie. Then Hillary has a criminal investigation fixed for her. She tries to use Russian lies she pays for and funnels through Perkins Coie to Fusion GPS to hire a British foreign outsider who uses Russian contacts. Then the worst part of this whole story is then that unverified uncorroborated dossier is then brought before a FISA court when a FISA application, and three subsequent renewal applications to spy on a campaign associate and ostensibly the Trump campaign. Nobody told that judge, or any of those four judges, how it’s possible that Hillary paid for that. They never told them.”

And inhale. Before anyone hurts themselves trying to absorb that, here is a brief summary: Hillary Clinton bought a dossier on Trump that was mean.

That’s really all there is to it. Hannity just repeated the same issues with different words for two minutes. And none of it was true. Neither Clinton nor her campaign colluded with Russians. They did partially fund research that was started by the right-wing Free Beacon. And the firm that conducted the research hired a respected former British intelligence professional to collect information from Russian sources.

And what Hannity calls “the worst part of this whole story” was a blatant lie. Much, but not all, of the Steele dossier was verified. None of of it was found to be false. The FISA court was, in fact, told that the dossier was partially funded by political partisans. Even Devin Nunes, who chaired the hopelessly biased Intelligence Committee inquiry, admitted that in his Republican report. And it was not the sole – or even main – justification for the FISA warrant. What’s more, Hannity proves that he doesn’t understand the FISA application process. The renewals are required every ninety days and may not use justifications that were cited in previous applications. So the dossier could only have been used once, not four times.

Sadly, the people who watch Hannity and Fox and Friends will never be told about these factual details. They will only hear the rapid-fire allegations that they can’t logically follow, and the fear in Hannity’s voice. And that will be enough for them to be certain that these crackpot conspiracy theories are true. After all, the glassy-eyed disciples of Trump are no more sane than Hannity is.

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

Fox News Laughably Mangles Report on Mueller’s Subpoena for Russia Docs From Trump Org

There was breaking news on Thursday about the investigation into Donald Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia. Special counsel Robert Mueller issued a new subpoena to the Trump Organization for all documents related to its dealings with Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin. It’s a significant development that indicates that the investigation is continuing to expand and has the President squarely in its sights.

Robert Mueller Trump

So it will surprise nobody that Fox News found a way to report this news that is both trivializing and confusing. In fact, they made it sound like good news for Trump. The mission of Fox News, of course, is to act as a shield for Trump and his Republican backers by defending him, and maligning his critics, at all costs. To that end Fox News host Dana Perino broke into her program with a Fox News Alert to rapidly misinform their viewers before any morsels of the truth could get out. She interviewed reporter Catherine Herridge on the Mueller subpoena (video below):

Perino: The New York Times is reporting that special counsel Robert Mueller has subpoenaed the Trump Organization for documents related to Russia. Chief intelligence correspondent Catherine Herridge is on Capitol Hill. Catherine, this news just broke right before the hour started.
Herridge: That’s right Dana. I’ve been making some phone calls and I spoke with one of the President’s personal attorneys who confirmed to me that the Trump Organization has been working closely and cooperatively with the office of the special counsel Robert Mueller. And at this time he was unaware that a subpoena had been issued, but he was going to check further. The key thing he said was the driving force, or the objective of the subpoena, whether it was in fact going down a new line of inquiry, or whether this was what they call a “wrap up subpoena” or a “clean up subpoena,” which is when you request records as you’re getting close to the end the of the investigation and you’re trying to tie up some loose ends.

First of all, it’s notable that Herridge only called Trump’s personal attorney to confirm this report, rather than someone at the Justice Department who would have knowledge of the subpoenas they issue. It’s also notable that Herridge didn’t identify the attorney she spoke with. Were these remarks off the record or anonymous?

More to the point, the introduction of the terms “wrap/clean up subpoena” muddies up the reporting. A quick Google of the terms found few results that weren’t referencing this Fox News segment. In fact, it’s a rather pointless distinction because all subpoenas are intended to secure information that’s relevant to the investigation and could lead to new paths of inquiry. But this spin by Fox News is intended to imply that the investigation is nearing completion and that nothing incriminating has been found. But they weren’t through trying to further deflect from the Trump/Russia connection:

Perino: So it might not signal a new aggressive approach by the special counselor?
Herridge: Well what we know through our own independent reporting is that the special counsel has been looking at the issue of the United Arab Emirates, and whether there was any financial input into the campaign by the United Arab Emirates, or whether there was a promise of better treatment after the election because of their support of then-candidate Trump.

Technically, that’s true. The UAE, along with other areas of financial misdeeds, is under investigation. But that has nothing to do with this new subpoena that specifically seeks documents from Trump related to Russia. This is an obvious dodge to create confusion and pretend that Russia isn’t the focus of this investigation. And the segment ended with a virtual admission that their furious spinning was probably all made up:

Perino: I’ve never heard of clean up subpoenas. I’m glad I had you on.
Herridge: I know. I learned of them recently too. That’s the kind of subpoena you want, apparently.
Perino: I used to work at the Justice Department. Someone was holding out on me.

See? It’s all very innocent. There’s nothing to worry about here. And the fact that these two experienced media professionals never heard of the type of subpoena that they just introduced on the air shouldn’t raise any suspicions. According to Fox News Mueller’s new subpoenas are not only uncontroversial, they are “the kind of subpoena you want.” It’s actually good news for Trump. And Fox News is the only place you’re gonna get that kind of twisted analysis.

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

Larry Kudlow is the Latest Contestant on Trump’s Reality TV Game Show Presidency

The mayhem at the White House is continuing as Donald Trump’s behavior gets ever more frantic and irrational. in the past few hours he has fired his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, the State Department’s top diplomacy aide, Steve Goldstein, and his personal assistant, John McEntee. There are rumblings from insiders that Chief of Staff John Kelly, National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, and Veterans Administration director David Shulkin are also on the chopping block.

Fox News Trump Apprentice

As these vacancies open up, Trump will have the opportunity to name new appointees that will be better supplicants to his will. That has already played out with his nomination of current CIA director Mike Pompeo to replace Tillerson. And the news on Wednesday is that Trump has picked CNBC contributor Larry Kudlow to succeed the fired Gary Cohn as his chief economic advisor.

By selecting Kudlow, Trump is continuing a pattern of bringing television personalities into his administration. Mostly they have been from Fox News and include K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastian Gorka, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel. Former Fox and Friends co-host, Heather Nauert, was also tapped by Trump to be the State Department spokesperson last year. And now she has already been promoted to replace Goldstein. Her entire career has been with Fox News and she has no diplomatic experience whatsoever.

The departure of Trump’s communications director, Hope Hicks, last month has set off a flurry of speculation as to who would fill her shoes. Among those being considered is Fox News co-host of The Five, Kimberly Guilfoyle. She has been on deck for a Trump slot for quite a while. And another Fox and Friends host, Pete Hegseth, is reportedly being wooed to lead the Veterans Administration should Shulkin get tossed. Prior to joining Fox, Hegseth headed up a Koch brothers front group that pretended to advocate for veterans. But he has zero experience running a massive bureaucracy like the VA, nor has he ever worked in the health services field that comprises much of what the VA does.

Trump’s National Security Advisor, McMaster, is also teetering on the brink. His successor is rumored to be another Fox News contributor, John Bolton. He served in George Bush’s state department and as Ambassador to the United Nations. Consequently Bolton played a major role in the fabricated weapons of mass destruction excuses to invade Iraq, as well as in the disastrous administration of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Obviously Trump is most comfortable working with TV personalities. It seems like his entire pool of possible job applicants come from the ranks of people he’s seen on Fox or other programs. His experience is so bereft of substance that he can’t possibly know anyone that has actual credentials in the jobs he needs to fill. And he wouldn’t want them anyway because they might not be photogenic. As a result, America will be burdened with shallow, unqualified amateurs running government agencies whose work affects us all. But at least they’ll look good when they sit down for softball interviews with Sean Hannity.

This is what Fox’s Laura Ingraham considers Trump “hitting his stride,” and “getting a really strong team in place.” And coincidentally, that’s exactly how Trump sees it. On Tuesday he explained to reporters that these White House shake-ups were just the normal fine tuning of personnel. “I’m really at a point,” he said, “where we’re getting very close to having the Cabinet, and other things, that I want.” That’s after a year in office where all of his original appointments were also his choices, but apparently not what he wanted. Ironically, not having the leadership one wants is something most Americans can relate to right now.

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

Fox News Lies: Trump’s Border Wall Can Be Paid for By Cutting Welfare – Still Not By Mexico

When Donald Trump spoke at the rally in Pennsylvania for some GOP candidate whose name he barely mentioned, Trump naturally launched into a medley of his campaign’s greatest hits. One of those most clamored for by his audience of fanatics was that old familiar refrain “Build the Wall.” And Trump didn’t disappoint his fans as he once again promised that the wall would be built “100 percent.”

Fox News Trump

The following day Fox News jumped on this critical breaking story with a report on Fox and Friends First. Host Heather Childers interviewed the Trump sycophant head of the so-called National Border Patrol Council, Brandon Judd. In Childers introduction of Judd she summarized what would be the theme of the whole segment:

“A brand new report says the wall could pay for itself by eliminating the need for welfare and other taxpayer funded benefits given to illegal immigrants.”

Wow, really? Actually, no. The report cited by Childers was published by the ultra-conservative assembly of xenophobes known as the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). It concluded that undocumented immigrants in the United States were consuming sixty-four billion dollars in federal benefits from welfare, public education and refundable tax credits. Outside of education, Childers and CIS were simply making most of that up. The immigrants in question are not eligible for welfare of any type, including ObamaCare. And how can they receive refundable tax credits if they aren’t filing tax returns? The truth is that immigrants provide far more financial benefits to the the country than anything they consume.

Through a flurry of leading questions, Judd repeated the findings from the same CIS study. And he went on to say that the wall “will cut down on what the taxpayer burden will be, which will then go straight into funding the wall.” That’s an impressively delusional statement. Let’s try to follow his logic. What Judd is saying that taxpayers would be relieved from having to pay welfare benefits for illegal immigrants (we’ll set aside for the moment that there are no such benefits). But that tax revenues would instead be shifted to paying for Trump’s wall. So contrary to Judd’s comment, there is no reduction in the burden of the taxpayers at all.

Furthermore, Judd is conceding that it’s the taxpayers who are paying for the wall. So the lede in this story where Childers claimed that the wall would pay for itself was a lie. It would be paid for by the aforementioned taxpayers. And in that case, it would not be paid for by Mexico, as promised by the President. Judd called this “a brilliant way to go about it. And that’s the business strategy that President Trump brings to the American people.”

It’s rather ludicrous to characterize this idiocy as “brilliant.” But it’s pretty accurate to say that it’s characteristic of Trump’s business strategy. As a failed businessman who has declared bankruptcy at least six times, Trump can hardly qualify as a business expert. He is a practitioner if “Disaster Capitalism” (hat tip: Naomi Klein), who exploits his failures for his own gain at the expense of everyone he does business with. And as president, that means the American people are the chumps in his greedy game. And Fox News is his PR division that airs garbage like this interview in order to help Trump fleece the nation.

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

If Trump Refuses to Hold Kellyanne Conway Accountable, the Media Must Refuse to Book Her

If anyone needed more evidence of the Trump administration’s flagrant criminality, it came Tuesday morning when it responded to allegations against senior advisor Kellyanne Conway. She was just found by the Office of the Special Counsel (not related to Robert Mueller) to have violated the Hatch Act that prohibits White House personnel from engaging in political advocacy. Twice.

Kellyanne Conway

What makes this such a great example of the administration’s casual relationship to crime is not just the illegal behavior, but the official response to it. Disregarding the OSC’s findings and referral for disciplinary action, Donald Trump’s White House chose to let Conway slide with no consequences for her actions whatsoever. Even though this is at least her third violation and she has supposedly been counseled. The White House said that:

“Kellyanne Conway did not advocate for or against the election of any particular candidate. She simply expressed the president’s obvious position that he have people in the House and Senate who support his agenda.”

That, of course, was totally untrue. Given her repeated breaches of federal law, and her absence of remorse, it is inconceivable that she would avoid punishment. Had an aide to President Obama done this, Republicans would be calling for his impeachment. Well, if Obama were caught jaywalking they’d call for his impeachment. But an unrepentant, recidivist federal law breaker like Conway doesn’t even get the proverbial slap on the wrist.

Consequently, Conway’s punishment should be meted out in the only other venue that matters to her: the media.

There is absolutely no justification for any responsible news enterprise to book this lawbreaker. It is on the news that Conway commits her crimes. So why provide her the opportunity to repeat her offenses? The victims of the Hatch Act are not just citizens who are deceived, but also news outlets that are exploited. So it is entirely appropriate for them to protect themselves and their audience from further harm.

What’s more, Conway has never respected the journalists with whom she associated. Her record of brazenly lying to reporters is well documented. She is, after all, the woman who coined the term “alternative facts.” Or as Chuck Todd observed, “falsehoods.”

Considering the frequency with which Conway has lied to the press, they would have been justified in banning her even before these legal judgments. In fact, that’s just what the hosts of Morning Joe did last year. Now that banishment needs to be extended to the rest of the media.

Since the criminals in the Trump administration believe that the law doesn’t apply to them, justice needs another outlet. Let Trump find someone else to lie to America. He has plenty of Deplorables around him who have no problem wallowing in that swamp. And leave them and Conway to Fox News where lying is a job requirement.

In the meantime, enjoy Michelle Wolf’s deconstruction of the Conway Method from the Daily Daily Show, where she notes that “For decades politicians have blown bullshit on TV. But Kellyanne Conway has changed the game.”

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

This Fox News Trump-Fluffer is Right: ‘The American People Are Sick and Tired’ of Russia Probe

Longtime Donald Trump sycophant and Citizens United honcho, David Bossie, visited State-Run TV (aka Fox News) on Monday to further disseminate the absurdity that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation “doesn’t seem like it is going anywhere near the White House.” That’s an obvious falsehood that is easily refuted by widely available facts.

Donald Trump

Everyone knows that there have already been nineteen indictments and five guilty pleas. Among the guilty are Trump’s National Security Advisor, and his assistant campaign manage. It’s hard to get much closer to the White House than that. And yet it does. Breaking news on Monday morning reveals that Mueller’s team has issued subpoenas for numerous documents and communications with Trump insiders including Corey Lewandowski, Hope Hicks, Keith Schiller, and his personal attorney Michael Cohen.

Which may explain why the Trump surrogate army has been deployed to flood the airwaves with deceitful propaganda. Bossie is taking the lead with an interview on the Fox News program Outnumbered OT (video below). and his dishonesty and obfuscation is so apparent it must be humiliating. He said that…

“The American people are sick and tired of this two year investigation. We are getting into this scandal fatigue area where the American people are tired of it. They see the shifting around and they don’t see any evidence whatsoever that this president or the campaign did anything wrong, let alone collude with the Russians.”

First of all, Bossie is brazenly lying about the duration of the investigation. Mueller was appointed to his position in May of 2017, so it hasn’t even been in progress for one year yet. However, Bossie did inadvertently stumble over a truth with regard to the American people’s fatigue. They are surely tired of how long this scandal is being drawn out and would appreciate a swift conclusion. However, it isn’t because they think Trump and Russia are innocent, as Bossie implies. To the contrary, The American people overwhelming believe that that the investigation is warranted and that Trump is likely guilty of something. A new CNN poll found that sixty-one percent of Americans say the Russia investigation is a serious matter. Seventy-two percent are very/somewhat concerned about foreign interference in U.S. elections.

No matter how many times people like Bossie or Sean Hannity or Sarah Huckabee Sanders say there is no evidence of collusion or other wrongdoing, they cannot make it true. The known evidence is piling up, and the evidence that is known only to Mueller and his team is surely far more damning than what has been made public. And the same is true with regard to the false right-wing assertions that the people don’t care about this issue. Trump’s defenders are only exposing their desperation by distorting reality to fit their yearning for all of this to be over. And Trump himself is dong the same thing on Twitter:

Trump’s anxiety could not be more apparent. It shows who is really “sick and tired.” He’s scared and likely knows that he is in deep trouble. This tweet displays a serious cognitive collapse. He is simultaneously saying that there was no Russian election meddling, and also that President Obama did nothing about the Russian election meddling that didn’t happen. Never mind that every U.S. intelligence agency with jurisdiction has stated unequivocally that there was Russian meddling. What’s more, Obama punished Russia with sanctions and ejections of Russian operatives. He also tried to put together a bipartisan response, but Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell refused to cooperate.

The tantrums thrown by Trump and his surrogates like Bossie aren’t helping their cause. They are only making them appear guilty and frantic as they scramble for cover. And the American people see right through this pathetic charade. It’s only a matter of time before Mueller’s investigation is complete and the truth revealed. And that’s when the American people’s fatigue will be relieved. But it will be just the beginning for Trump et al.

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

Devin Nunes To Fox News: Stephen Colbert is ‘The Danger That We Have in This Country’

The first year of Donald Trump’s presidency has seen innumerable crises develop domestically and throughout the world. There have been several shootings on school campuses. Our elections have been tampered with by Russia, and they’re still doing it. Trump is threatening nuclear war with North Korea. And his proposal to impose tariffs (mostly on our allies) sent the stock market into a tailspin.

Stephen Colbert & Trump Baby

So what does Devin Nunes, the Republican chairman of the House Select Intelligence Committee, consider to be one of the most serious hazards facing America? Well, of course, it’s late night television comedy, and specifically Stephen Colbert. Nunes was interviewed on Fox News by their resident Financial Distortion Anchor, Neil Cavuto (video below). The segment had nothing to do with the economy, but it did get to the bottom of the frightening assault on America by radical satirists. It began withe this probing exchange:

Cavuto: You mention that the media doesn’t present a fair case of [Trump/Russia]. Maybe the indication of that is that you’ve recently become the butt of late night comic jokes. Particularly Stephen Colbert was up on Capitol Hill. I think making you the butt of some jokes. What did you think of that? Did Colbert make any effort to talk to you?”
Nunes: Well, I think that this is the danger that we have in this country. The left controls not only the universities in this country, but they also control Hollywood in this country, and the mainstream media. So conservatives in this country are under attack and I think this is a great example of it.

Exactly. Stephen Colbert absolutely is “the danger” that America faces. And kudos to Cavuto for bringing up this looming peril. Where else but on Fox News could this travesty be exposed? Nunes points out that the reason the nation is undergoing such unprecedented turmoil is that leftists have seized control of the most powerful institutions in the country – universities and Hollywood – and are using them to enslave the minds of decent citizens. However, he doesn’t explain why these scurrilous lefties allowed Republicans to control the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the White House.

Also unexplained is how the special counsel, Robert Mueller, managed to get (so far) nineteen indictments and five guilty pleas connected to his investigation of Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia. But rest assured, somehow it’s the fault of universities, Hollywood, and Colbert. And Nunes isn’t taking it laying down. He doesn’t intend to be the butt of anyone’s joke, no matter how much he deserves it. In fact, he likes it:

Nunes: So I hope they continue to do it. Because on the one hand you’ll see the left and the media running out there saying “OMG, this is the end of the world. The Russians attacked our democracy. And we have evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.” However, they can’t show it. They have no proof […] they resort to going to their friends in Hollywood to make fun of people and attack people who are trying to get to the truth. I enjoy the attacks. If they want to continue to attack me, that’s fine.”

Well, we certainly wouldn’t want to disappoint him, would we? Although it’s puzzling that he says he enjoys it while simultaneously complaining that it’s an unfair attack and a danger to the country. Is he an unpatriotic masochist?

Nunes’ remarks were rife with allegations as to the identity of the real colluders – naturally, Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. And when Cavuto asked him about allegations that he was “doing the President’s bidding,” he curiously replied “I don’t know.” Then quickly stammering to add “I mean, we don’t get any orders from the White House.” Which makes perfect sense. They are probably coming from Mar-A-Lago, where the President spends most of his time.

Nunes went on to praise his committee’s work and insisted that he “follows the facts where they lead.” So long as they lead to Clinton and the Democrats. He refused to allow his Democratic committee colleagues to call witnesses. And he wouldn’t hold White House witnesses accountable when they refused to answer questions. Nunes falsely claimed that “no one would know … that Fusion GPS was paid by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party’ but for his efforts. In fact, it was reported by the (fake?) media long before he ever got around to it.

Once again, Fox News uncovers the atrocities in Washington that are neglected by the “mainstream” media (which, for some reason doesn’t include Fox News). And heroes like Devin Nunes are permitted time to inform the American people about what is really going on in this gawd-awful country. With journalism like this we will hopefully soon be rid of fake reporters like Colbert who are working tirelessly to destroy America.

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

Here is the Fox News segment with Cavuto and Nunes:

And here is video of Colbert’s trip to Washington, D.C.:

Who Will Trump Choose to Replace Hope Hicks? (Hint: Is He Watching Fox News?)

Another day, another White House staffer falls out of the sinking ship. This time it’s one of Donald Trump’s most loyal and longest serving aides, communications director Hope Hicks. The camera shy press liaison is reported to be leaving within the coming weeks. And I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that yesterday she admitted at a congressional inquiry that she has been telling “white lies” as a part of her official duties.

Hope Hicks

That’s probably the problem. Hicks was telling only white lies when the President had warned her to stick to only the darkest of all possible lies. He gave her plenty of examples via his own behavior to make it clear what was expected of her. Obviously, she wasn’t able to cut it. Although she had her moments. Like when she helped to draft the false excuse for why Don Jr. was meeting with Russians. Or when she wrote the press release defending her boyfriend, Rob Porter, after he was revealed to be a wife-beater.

Trump will not likely make the same mistake again. He has a strong track record of hiring brazen liars to staff his White House operation. Champion fabricators like Sean Spicer, Anthony Scaramucci, and the current mistress of propaganda, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, have distinguished this president’s press office.

So who will Trump turn to to fill this critical post? It will have to be someone who doesn’t care about having a good reputation with the public or the media. In fact, the more hate for the media the better. After all, Trump regards the press as the enemy of the American people.” The Hicks successor will need to be able to lie on camera, even when it’s painfully obvious that they are lying. He or she should have a relationship with other professional prevaricators like Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh.

However, it isn’t necessary that the communications director candidate have any actual experience in communications. Trump prefers people who have little or no idea what they are doing. Probably to assure that they know less than he does (admittedly, a low bar). And in the end, he wouldn’t really trust anyone other than himself. An article in the Associated Press noted that Trump “increasingly sees himself as the White House’s only effective spokesperson.”

Given the criteria for filling this job, only one source for human resources comes to mind. Trump will have to poach another staffer from the pool of Trump-fluffers at Fox News. The Fox studio is a rich vein of inexperienced, dishonest, shameless, butt-kissers. It’s a vein Trump has tapped many times before for aides including K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastion Gorka, Heather Nauert, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel.

There are two names at Fox that stand out as potential White House flacks. Laura Ingraham would slide right into the role with her smug arrogance and jaunty know-it-allism. But having just secured a primetime show on Fox, Ingraham may be reluctant to bail. She may also be locked into a long-term contract.

That leaves Kimberly Guilfoyle. She has been on deck for a Trump slot for quite a while. Last year Trump insiders were telling the media that he “wants Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle to take [Sean Spicer’s] place.” She is currently a co-host of Fox’s right-wing gab-fest, The Five. She has never been a journalist and has no experience in press relations. So she has those assets going for her. Trump may also appreciate Guilfoyle’s admiration for Vladimir Putin, who she thought would be a better president than Barack Obama.

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

There are a few other names that could be thrown into the pot. Ainsley Earhardt of Trump’s favorite Fox News program, Fox and Friends. Evening Anchor Martha MacCallum could bring back some blondness to the gig. Or maybe, in a bid for the millennial audience, Tomi Lahren’s juvenile outbursts could be just the right spice for Trump’s media taco bowl. Only time will tell. And there’s no hurry since Hicks will still be around for a few weeks, or until she has to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller.

NRA Shill Says the Media ‘Love Mass Shootings,’ ‘Crying White Mothers are Ratings Gold.

If you were still uncertain as to whether the NRA is an organization steeped in partisan rancor and vile, hate-filled hysterics, the remarks by its chief spokesperson, Dana Loesch, at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), will put an end to your doubts.

Dana Loesch

On Wednesday night Loesch appeared on the CNN Town Hall featuring student survivors from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School along with some parents, teachers and politicians. Loesch attempted to present herself as a rational, open-minded participant in a discussion seeking to find solutions to a serious problem. But the very next day she let her true feelings come out in her speech at CPAC (video below):

“Many in legacy media love mass shootings. You guys love it. Now, I’m not saying that you love the tragedy. But I am saying that you love the ratings. Crying white mothers are ratings gold to you and many in the legacy media.”

It’s not surprising that she didn’t say this to the faces of the “crying white mothers” in CNN’s forum. She is a deceitful, manipulative hack who who will happily lie in order to achieve her ends and those of her benefactors in the firearms industry. To make the broad accusation that the media “loves mass shootings” in a public address demonstrates her utter lack of decency and humanity. And her ability to turn around in a few hours to display both ugly sides of her face is something that only comes with an innately grotesque personality.

But Loesch went even further to insult the parents of murdered children as if they were disingenuous contestants on a reality TV show. And the interjection of a racial component only makes the insult many times worse. Her CPAC performance was like watching a cartoon villain giving away all her secret, evil plans, secure in the belief that her opponents would soon be dead and unable to stop her. That may be why she also unleashed this bit of BS:

“The government has proven that they cannot keep you safe, and yet some people want all of us to disarm. And then they also call Trump a tyrant, but then say they want the president to also confiscate our firearms. Try to figure that one out.”

Of course, no one is proposing to disarm the entire nation. Likewise, no one has suggested confiscating all firearms. These are just the NRA’s standard lies to whip up fear among their followers that a tyrannical overlord is plotting to enslave America and only the NRA can prevent it. They screeched for eight years that President Obama was coming for their guns, never mind that it never happened, nor was there any threat of it. The NRA is fear machine and it has to have an enemy to survive. Preferably a dark-skinned one.

Loesch’s remarks were not a one-off or gaffe. It’s an NRA mantra as seen in this video from NRA-TV. The commentator uses the identical language that Loesch used about loving mass shootings, repeating it for emphasis. And he spent the rest of the time spewing the NRA line in a monologue of deceit.

That’s what the NRA does. It is their whole purpose for existing. They do not represent gun owners. They shill for gun manufacturers. Which is why they push for more guns as the solution to every problem. No matter what it is, the only NRA approved response is to buy more guns. They are about marketing and nothing else. And if innocent people die, that’s just the price of capitalism.

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