March Maddow-ness: MSNBC Dominates Fox News in the March Ratings Championship Game

Two years ago, Fox News was the unchallenged king of the cable news networks with ratings that sometimes exceeded the combined total of CNN and MSNBC. Last year, Rachel Maddow showed surprising strength against her competition, Sean Hannity. But now it is becoming a regular occurrence that MSNBC beats Fox News over significant parts of the daily schedule.

Rachel Maddow

MSNBC’s ratings success is driven by Maddow’s continued surge. She is no longer a quirky thorn in Fox’s side. She regularly wins her time period in the coveted advertising demographic of 18-34 year olds. In March she beat Hannity every single day of the month except for one. Her average audience for the month was 651,000. That compares to Hannity’s average of 568,000. But even more impressive is that Maddow also bested Hannity in total viewers fourteen out of the twenty-one weekdays in the month. Her average for total viewers was 2.99 million vs. Hannity’s 2.87 million.

MSNBC should also be proud of having better audience numbers in the demo than Fox News for most of the evening hours including primetime. Their average from 4:00pm to midnight was 458,400 vs. Fox’s 455,800. The Last Word with Lawerence O’Donnell won its time period thirteen of the twenty-one weekdays in March. And The 11th Hour with Brian Williams came out on top on nineteen days. Both of those programs scored higher than their competition (Laura Ingraham and Shannon Bream respectively) for the full month. And although Fox News generally did better during most of the daytime time periods, Deadline with Nicolle Wallace managed to beat Fox’s Neil Cavuto on eight days.

A weak point in MSNBC’s schedule is All In with Chris Hayes. Which is too bad because it’s an excellent show that has been recognized with multiple Emmys. However, it needs some juice if it’s going to be a decent leadin for Maddow and the rest of their primetime. They should think about pairing Hayes with Joy Reid as a co-host. Reid’s weekend program has been showing strength and is popular among MSNBC’s core audience. And it wouldn’t hurt to consider swapping Nicolle Wallace into Chris Matthew’s Hardball slot. Wallace has demonstrated her ability to pull in viewers, and Matthews may play better in the earlier, newsier part of the day.

The bottom line is that Fox News can no longer consider itself the number one network for cable news. It has been declining with each new reporting period. In January Fox News dropped fourteen percent in primetime. And February topped that with an additional fifteen percent decline. Meanwhile, MSNBC gained significantly in both of those months. February’s percentage gains were over twenty percent. Even worse for Fox News was their actual earnings performance. Their revenue rose less than either of their competitors – a measly seventeen percent. CNN’s rise doubled that to thirty-two percent. And MSNBC rocketed up sixty-two percent.

We can expect Fox’s earnings to fall even more in April with the advertiser exodus they are experiencing due to Laura Ingraham’s reprehensible attack on David Hogg, one of the survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school shooting in Parkland, Florida. So far there are at least eighteen major advertisers who have pulled their business from her show. And in the midst of that she just announced that she will be on “vacation” all of next week. For the record, that’s the same thing Bill O’Reilly did after his advertisers bailed en masse and just before he was canned by Fox.

UPDATE: Forbes affirms the above ratings analysis.

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

Trump Picks His Former Caddy to Replace Hope Hicks as White House Communications Director

Donald Trump’s lack of any political experience or intelligence has manifested itself in a multitude of ways. Most troubling are those wherein he implements policies that are overtly idiotic and harmful. But he also demonstrates his inability to govern by his appointments to critical White House and cabinet positions. These include his daughter Ivanka, her husband Jared, Ben Carson, Rick Perry, Scott Pruitt, etc.

Dan Scavino

Now CNN is reporting that Trump has found a replacement for his departing White House Communications Director Hope Hicks. And he has managed to select another person who completely lacks the requisite skills and experience to do the job. According to CNN Trump has answered the question of Hicks’ successor:

“The answer, at least in some capacity, will be Dan Scavino, the social media director who this week moved into the minuscule office a pace or two from Trump’s desk that Hicks spent the last week packing up. Described by aides as Trump’s “mini me,” who can channel his moods and voice as few others can, Scavino is the last remaining staffer from the launch of Trump’s presidential campaign still posted by the President’s side.”

Scavino is presently Trump’s Director of Social Media, a post where he was responsible for the President’s Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts. In other words, his most trusted and important confidant. But he doesn’t have any experience with managing the press or developing the strategic media operations of a large enterprise.

This promotion may cheer Scavino up after the announcement yesterday that his wife has filed for divorce. But his personal problems will not likely be separated from his official duties. As Director of Social Media, Scavino was the identified as the person responsible for an anti-Semitic tweet that put Hillary Clinton inside a Jewish Star of David and called her corrupt. On another occasion he was reprimanded for violating the Hatch Act, which prohibits electioneering by White House staffers.

But Scavino isn’t even very good at the job he has now. Being in charge of Trump’s Twitter account he shouldn’t be posting tweets that are flagrantly false (or considering who he works for, maybe he should). Such as the time he posted a video that he said was of the Miami International Airport during Hurricane Irma (it wasn’t). Or the posting that was supposed to be of a collapsing building in the Caribbean (it was in Tibet). Former Fox News host Megyn Kelly cited Scavino as a reason she received death threats during the campaign. And even though Scavino often advances conspiracy theories from sites like Alex Jones’ InfoWorld, he is still the person most retweeted by the President.

This is just the latest incompetent to get a big promotion from Trump. Earlier this week the President nominated his personal White House physician, Ronny Jackson, to be the Secretary of the Veterans Administration. Putting people like Jackson and Scavino in charge of agencies like the VA or the White House communications Office is like making a PC tech the CEO of IBM. Even a good PC tech cannot possibly do that job. But that’s what we’ve come to in the Era of Trump. He doesn’t actually know anyone with the requisite credentials to conduct the complex work of government. So he installs his friends and family from whom he can expect blind loyalty. And the nation is going to suffer as a result.

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

Donald Trump Actually Admitted He’s a Flaming Idiot Four Times Yesterday

The past two years has been a veritable circus as Donald Trump clowned his way through the presidency. He’s proven beyond a shadow of doubt that he is utterly incapable of governing. His pathological lying and relentless boasting are the hallmarks of his oratory. And for some reason he insists demonstrating that he’s a complete imbecile who fails to understand the simplest concepts.

Donald Trump

However, even with that record of buffoonery, Trump outdid himself in his speech yesterday that was supposedly about infrastructure. He spent maybe two minutes out of more than sixty on that topic, squeezed in between embarrassing exaltations of himself and infantile insults of his perceived enemies. But what distinguished this speech more than anything else were his own admissions of stupidity. It was a startling thing to watch. Here are a few of the things that Trump needed to make sure that everyone knew he couldn’t grasp:

He Doesn’t Know What a Community College Is:

“I don’t know what that means, a community college. Call it vocational and technical. People know what that means. They don’t know what a community college means […] and I tell people, call it vocational from now on, it’s a great word, it’s a great word. Call it vocational and technical perhaps, but use vocational, because that’s what it’s all about. People know what that means, we don’t know what a community college means.”

Who doesn’t know what “community college” means? The phrase is its own definition. It’s a college that’s in the community. Is that so hard? What’s more, it is not the same as a vocational or technical school. Vocational schools generally focus on a specific skill such as nursing or mechanics. Community colleges are more like conventional four-year institutions with a broad range of study. They award Associates Degrees and are often starting points to pursue higher education. But Trump is fixated on the word “vocational” most likely because he just learned it. He has done the same thing with other words like “comprehensive” and “reciprocal” when those entered his vocabulary. He doesn’t realize that the rest of America already knows these words, or he assumes they’re as dumb as he is.

He Doesn’t Know That His Wall is Not Being Built:

“We’re getting that sucker built. That’s what I do. I build. I was always very good at building. It was my best thing. I think better than being president, I was always very good at building.”

Somebody showed Trump a picture of a wall under construction and told him it was the border wall that he has been yammering about for two years. It wasn’t. It was a part of a wall in California that was undergoing an upgrade that was approved by the Obama administration. However. Trump’s assessment of being better at building than being president is an easy call. Not because he was ever good at building, but because he’s better at anything than he is at being president.

He Doesn’t Know How Judges are Made:

“You know, when I got in, we had over 100 federal judges that weren’t appointed. I don’t know why Obama left that. It was like a big beautiful present to all of us. Why the hell did he leave that? Maybe he got complacent?”

Why? Because the Republican Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, deliberately refused to hold hearings or confirmations for President Obama’s nominees. This wasn’t a secret tactic that might have eluded Trump’s attention. McConnell did it openly and was criticized harshly for his perversion of democracy. But Trump thinks the vacant seats were the result of that black president being lazy. Cause you know how “those” people are.

Finally, Trump took to Twitter for another display of ignorance wrapped in a critique of one of his favorite foils. His tweet accused Jeff Bezos, owner of both Amazon and the Washington Post, of failing to pay taxes and exploiting the Post Office:

Really? First of all, the Post Office is everyone’s “delivery boy.” It’s their whole purpose for being. And Amazon’s use of their services is actually a source of enormous revenue for them. Secondly, Amazon does collect sales taxes in every state in the country that imposes them. The fact that Trump doesn’t know this just shows that he has never bought anything from Amazon or bothered to ask anyone who has. His real target is Bezos, who he thinks is ordering the Washington Post to write critical stories about him. Also, it’s hypocrisy on a grand scale for Trump to criticize others for not paying taxes. He has bragged about not doing so and insisted that it was evidence of his genius as a businessman. At least Amazon’s tax releases are public information, unlike Trump’s.

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

It’s one thing for Trump’s critics to lay into him whenever he does something foolish. But it’s another when he himself admits his foolishness and seems to revel in it. But what’s really frightening is that there are so many people who hear these admissions and don’t find anything troubling about them. His disciples are members of his cult and blindly believe whatever he tells them, no matter how obvious the truth is.

THE CALLER: Starring Donald Trump, Roseanne Barr, and Vladimir Putin with Stormy Daniels

This season’s steamiest melodrama has been unleashed on America. It’s a thrilling adventure into the politics and romance of Donald Trump’s White House. Just when you think you’ve heard it all, the President shows that he is always one step ahead of the fake news and the hordes of rampaging foes that hound him around every corner.

Donald Trump

In the latest episode of this bawdy soap opera it is revealed that Trump diverted his attention from supposedly being president to make a phone call to an old friend. The TV matron of the Conner family, Roseanne Barr, was the recipient of this honor due to her surprisingly successful comeback on television. After the premiere of the rebooted “Roseanne” show drew 18.2 million viewers, the President knew that he had to drop everything and get Rosie on the line. Never mind that he won’t call the families of deceased soldiers or victims of natural disasters. Trump knows exactly what his priorities are. This historical event was recounted adoringly by the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends who noted that Trump “likes his big ratings.”

Indeed, Trump does like his ratings BIG. So when he heard about Roseanne, who is a fan of Trump both in her show and in real life, he stopped tweeting and dialed her up. After all, if there is anything Trump is known for, it’s congratulating people whose achievements soar beyond the ordinary. That’s why he called Vladimir Putin last week to congratulate him on his stupendous electoral victory. Never mind that the election was a sham in which his opponents were not permitted to run, or were otherwise threatened with imprisonment or death. And speaking of death, Trump also called Philippines President Duterte recently to congratulate him on his fantastic anti-drug program that features the assassination of suspects in the streets without having to bother with messy annoyances like, you know, trials.

As the story unfolds, the love interest is introduced to steam up the screen. The sultry Stormy Daniels was also on TV this week. “Why,” she wonders, “didn’t Donald call me? My ratings were even bigger than Roseanne’s with 22 million viewers.” Perhaps he was jealous since Stormy’s ratings on 60 Minutes were far higher than Trump’s when he was interviewed in the days following the election. He managed only about 16 million viewers.

Stay tuned as the controversies and scandals continue to heat up. In upcoming episodes sparks will fly between Kellyanne Conway and Hope Hicks. And Mike Pence will beg “Mother’s” forgiveness for dining with a female senator without permission. And the season will conclude on a fiery note with the confrontation between Trump and his arch-nemesis, special counsel Robert Mueller. This is truly must see TV.

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

Here’s Another Fox News Sleazeball: Is Sexual Misconduct a Job Requirement at Fox?

The list of men in powerful positions at Fox News who have engaged in acts of sexual harassment or assault continues to grow. Their legacy of deviants includes their former CEO and founder, the late Roger Ailes, their biggest star, Bill O’Reilly, host Eric Bolling, and Fox Sports President Jamie Horowitz, to name a few. Fox and Freinds co-anchor Ed Henry was suspended for several weeks for having an adulterous affair. And most recently it was discovered that the wife of host Jesse Watters filed for divorce due to his ongoing adulterous affair with a twenty-five year old co-worker

Donald Trump, Pete Hegseth

Now we can add Fox and Friends co-host Pete Hegseth to the list. This case of infidelity was also revealed in divorce papers for the sanctimonious and hypocritical family values advocate and favorite of serial sexual predator Donald Trump. APM Reports found that:

“Hegseth — a telegenic, Army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan — is in the process of divorcing his second wife after having an extramarital affair and a child with a producer at Fox News. Hegseth’s second wife filed for divorce roughly a month after the girl was born. […] His first marriage also ended after Hegseth had an affair with a female work colleague.”

The fact that yet another male Fox News employee has been caught behaving badly suggests that there is something about the culture at the conservative propaganda network that encourages it, or at least doesn’t discourage it. The patterns are too consistent to regard it as coincidence.

Hegseth’s past is rife with problems that extend beyond his sexual misadventures. Prior to joining Fox News he was the director of a phony veterans group, Concerned Veterans for America, that was mainly funded by the Koch brothers. That, along with his military background, made him a candidate to replace the now-fired David Shulkin as Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Never mind that Hegseth has no experience in managing an organization with a $200 billion budget and 377,000 employees. Note: Trump just announced that his nominee to head the VA is his personal White House physician, Ronny Jackson, who also has none of the management experience required.

The operations Hegseth did head were found to have serious violations of ethics, if not law. At Concerned Veterans for America he hired his brother Philip with a six-figure salary. It was his first job out of college. And the APM Reports investigation also found that:

“In 2012, Hegseth formed MN PAC, an organization aimed at supporting ‘conservative candidates in contested races.’ But an analysis of the organization’s spending — less than $15,000 — shows it spent less than half on behalf of candidates. A third of the PAC’s funds was spent on two Christmas parties and reimbursements to Hegseth.”

Clearly this isn’t a case of a few bad apples. It’s evidence that Fox News is a breeding ground for perverts. They hire and promote men who blatantly demean and abuse women. The environment was described by former Fox News host and victim Andrea Tantaros in her lawsuit as “a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency, and misogyny.” And now Pete Hegseth joins the parade of misogyny that is the distinctive “quality” of working at Fox News and mirrors the depravity of Trump’s White House.

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

Ann Coulter Knew Trump Was ‘a Shallow, Lazy Ignoramus’ and is Still Proud of Voting For Him

It’s been over a year since the election of Donald Trump and the media is still preoccupied with the hold Trump has on his glassy-eyed disciples. They keep convening panels of Trump voters to ask them why they voted for him and if they still support him. Curiously, they aren’t convening similar panels of Hillary Clinton voters. But the Trump voters continue to profess their undying devotion to the President. Never mind that he is being investigated by a special counsel for colluding with Russia to steal the election, or that his affairs and sexual assaults continue to be revealed.

Ann Coulter

At least there is one Trump fan who is demonstrating a measure of honesty about her support. Ultra-rightist bigot and author Ann Coulter participated in a discussion at Columbia University Tuesday where she was challenged on her past advocacy of Trump. Her remarks were surprisingly candid and they cleared up a lot of what is puzzling about Trump’s appeal. She proudly proclaimed that:

“I knew he was a shallow, lazy ignoramus, and I didn’t care.”

So there you have it. The author of In Trump We Trust admits that she trusted “a shallow, lazy ignoramus” with running the richest, most powerful nation on the planet. The reason that Coulter doesn’t regret her support for Trump is that she always expected him to be just as idiotic as his critics said he was – just as blindingly stupid as he appeared to be. How can she be disappointed if she got precisely what she was expecting?

That’s not to say that Coulter wasn’t disappointed for other reasons. She was clearly upset that Trump didn’t deliver on his most frequently articulated campaign promise. “He’s not giving us what he promised at every single campaign stop,” she whined. And of course she’s referring to the border wall that would be paid for by Mexico. Coulter’s new found bitterness has nothing to do with Trump’s record breaking and pathological lying. She isn’t bothered by his mistreatment of women or the intimidation tactics he used to silence them. His raking in cash from foreign governments and lobbyists is apparently fine with Coulter. But not having surrounded America into a prison-like disclosure in order to keep out brown people is an unforgivable affront.

Despite her dissatisfaction with Trump’s inability to wall off our southern neighbors, Coulter is adamant that she made the right choice to vote for him in 2016. She told the Columbia audience of mostly college Republicans that:

“I regret nothing. I’d do the exact same thing. I’d write the exact same book, with the exact same title. We had 16 lunatics being chased by men with nets running for president – and Trump. So of course I had to be pedal-to-the-metal for Donald Trump. I’d been waiting 30 years for someone to say all these things. I went into this completely clear-eyed.”

The sixteen lunatics that Coulter was referring to were the cream of the GOP crop. They included nine governors and five senators. Two of these loonies (Ben Carson and Rick Perry) ended up in Trump’s cabinet, where they are notable primarily for screwing up and embarrassing the President – and the nation. And what Coulter must have been waiting thirty years for someone to say was that immigrants are rapists and drug dealers from shithole countries. Therefore, it’s understandable why and she the rest of the Deplorables have no regrets. Trump has proven himself to be the president they hoped for. Unfortunately, he’s also the one that the rest of America feared.

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

Donald Trump’s Ignorance of Wall Street Would Be Hilarious if it Weren’t So Dangerous

The topics Donald Trump takes up on Twitter almost always fall into one of two categories. Either he is lashing out at a perceived enemy (fake news, Alec Baldwin, etc), or he is exalting himself for something for which he doesn’t deserve any credit. The patterns are predictable and invariably involve childish outbursts.

Donald Trump

One of the most frequent subjects of his self-praise involves the performance of the stock market. He likes to point it out whenever it goes up and baselessly attribute that activity to his unique awesomeness. And for some reason, he never mentions it when it goes down. News Corpse noted this peculiarity back in January, which was the last time that Trump tweeted about an up day in the market. He’s been uncharacteristically quiet on this subject until yesterday. The article warned that Trump’s bragging would come back to “Bite Him in His Sh*thole Country” and said in part that…

“It’s always dangerous to rely on stock market performance to validate the economy. There are too many factors that can shift investor sentiment. It is a fluid indicator that could reverse course tomorrow. Indeed, many stock analysts regard the market’s current position as overvalued. These analysts are predicting a ‘correction’ that could send the markets down significantly.”

Apparently Trump failed to heed my warning. Yesterday he posted a tweet congratulating himself again on a big market gain. He’s Replying to a CNBC tweet that notes “Dow posts third best one-day point gain ever.”

Indeed the market soared 669 points on Monday. What Trump failed to mention was that on Thursday it dropped 725 points, and went down another 424 points on Friday. That’s a total of 1,149 points. So Monday’s gain didn’t come close to making up last week’s losses. And to make matters worse, the market took another dive today of 344 points. So the market is still down 824 points since Thursday. In fact, it’s down 2,759 points in the past thirty days, which puts it deep in “correction” territory.

The most often cited cause for this recent decline is Trump’s ill-considered and reckless declaration of a trade war with Asia and Europe. And his recent tax scam legislation that gave corporations and the wealthy big tax cuts and exploded the national debt by over a trillion dollars didn’t help matters either. Knowledgeable analysts recognize that Trump and the Republican Congress are squarely to blame for our current state of economic crisis.

The actual damage that Trump does is only one part of what makes him so dangerous. His insistence on lying about his failures afterward congeals the whole mess into a spreading catastrophe. The dimwitted disciples who can never find fault with Trump will believe whatever he tells them to believe. Consequently, they have no idea of where the market is now or what reasonable steps should be taken to mitigate any further harm to the American families who rely on their investment earnings for current or future needs. And the GOP Congress and Trump have shown clearly that they couldn’t care less. But then, we already knew that.

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

Fox News and Bill O’Reilly are Still Sucking – Up to Each Other

You have to feel a little sorry for Fox News these days. They are in the impossible position of having to defend a sleazy, ignorant, narcissistic, greedy, racist, corrupt, pathological liar. Their sycophantic propaganda on behalf of Donald Trump must be getting harder and harder to manufacture. The shills that litter their airwaves are becoming more desperate for material with each passing day.

Fox News

So it’s understandable that they’ve turned to their disgraced former star, Bill O’Reilly, to try to shore up their flagging ratings. After all, he was merely found to have committed multiple acts of sexual harassment and assault. And the President has done that repeatedly, so what’s the big deal? If Trump can consider bringing back his domestic abusing former aide, Rob Porter (which is being discussed), then Fox News surely can bring back O’Reilly.

The Daily Beast is reporting that O’Reilly’s “Lies and Legends” is once again airing on the network. NOTE: Despite the title, it is not a documentary based on Trump’s presidency. How a network that was shamed into severing ties with their top rated star can even entertain the notion of putting him back on the payroll is something only a cretinous Fox executive could justify. But almost certainly won’t bother doing.

It’s fitting that on the same day that this news was announced, O’Reilly distinguished himself with his hokey “Tip of the Day” on Twitter. This tip set out to belittle the historic “March For Our Lives” that called on Congress to enact the common sense gun reforms that overwhelming majorities of the American people support. But it also slandered Fox’s competitor, NBC.

First of all, there were several reputable analyses of the march’s attendance in Washington, D.C., that put the numbers between 800,000 and a million. But O’Reilly referenced only a single source that was cited in an article on Fox News (where else?). O’Reilly’s only basis for calling the absurd 200,000 figure the “real” number is his wishful thinking and obvious bias. What makes this even worse is that Fox News also reported the 800,000 figure on the air (see image above). So is O’Reilly advising the few remaining losers who follow him to refrain from trusting Fox News? Nah, that would require the sort of n0-spin analysis that this worm has never been capable of.

The love affair between Fox and O’Reilly is clearly not over yet. But that’s only because neither of them have any other prospects. So both are forced to rely on each other out of desperation. O’Reilly’s public profile has been reduced to near total obscurity. And Fox News has employed so many sexual predators what’s one more brought back from the past? As their messianic Deal Leader would say: SAD.

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

WINNING? The Stormy Daniels Segment on 60 Minutes Outperformed Trump By Millions

This could kill Donald Trump. Perhaps the most notorious personality flaw of the President (other than his pathological lying) is his malignant narcissism. His ego is so gigantic, and yet fragile, that he has to constantly convince himself that he is the smartest, handsomest, strongest, and bestest at anything and everything he ever attempts. He never stops bragging about what are mostly imaginary accomplishments that he portrays as breaking historical records.

Stormy Daniels Donald Trump

And particularly with regard to his TV performance, Trump falsely claims to have been the top rated personality for years on The Apprentice. So he’s going to take it very hard when he learns that he lost the television ratings war to a porn star. Stormy Daniels interview Sunday night on 60 Minutes delivered on the anticipation that preceded it. The first public comments by Daniels about her affair with Trump was compelling drama that included sex, violence, corruption, and even some humor.

But the part that will thrust Trump into another of his infantile tantrums is the fact that Daniels scored a much higher rating on the program than he did. The Nielsen overnights show that the Daniels interviewed was watched by by more than 23 million people and delivered a 16.3 rating/27 share. It was the highest rated episode of 60 Minutes in ten years. Which means, of course, that it beat Trump’s interview following the November 2016 election. That was also highly anticipated as it was the first interview of Trump as President-elect. But only 16.4 million people tuned in for that show. Stormy did more than fifty percent better.

You can bet that this is going to gnaw at our ego-driven Commander-in-Chief. After all, he is still obsessed with propping up his sore winner status over Hillary Clinton, who also beat him by millions of votes. And it’s only been a year and a half since that debacle. Trump just can’t get it out of his head.

This is a president who can’t talk about any subject with proclaiming himself the master of it. Whenever he addresses the tax reform bill that Congress passed, he says it was the biggest tax cut in history (it wasn’t). He says the stock market has risen more than during any other president’s first year (it hasn’t). He insists that he is the least racist person you will ever meet (so long as you’ve only ever met former Grand Wizards of the KKK).

Donald Trump is quite obviously suffering from a severe case of self-delusion. Virtually everything he takes credit for, he had nothing to do with. But he still demands recognition for having solved every problem he’s confronted. Never mind that he hasn’t repealed ObamaCare (despite repeatedly trying to sabotage it). He hasn’t ended terrorism (which he said would be so easy). And he can’t even get the Republican-controlled Congress to pay for his idiotic border wall (that Mexico was supposed to pay for). Reality notwithstanding, Trump exalts himself at every opportunity whether he deserves it or not. Here’s a tweet from September 2015 that proves how important this is to him:

The only way to characterize Trump so far in his presidency is as a loser. He can’t manage to keep people on his staff or attract competent administrators. His rallies are drawing smaller crowds with every event. And now he was beaten at the game he was so proud of for fourteen years by a woman who has never before been on television. He’s apparently afraid to even utter name. He will post insults on Twitter aimed at everyone from John McCain to Chuck Todd to Meryl Streep. But not a single word about Stormy Daniels. Perhaps he knows deep down that he is no competition for her. Or he knows what she knows about him.

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

Trump’s Brilliant Plan to Lure a Good Lawyer Who Can Stomach Him? Insult Them All

As both a candidate and as president, Donald Trump has proven that he has one skill that towers over his critics and opponents. It isn’t the “Art of the Deal” as he demonstrated by caving in to sign a spending bill that he vociferously hates. It isn’t management and recruiting as his record turnover rate at the White House proves. And it isn’t political gamesmanship considering he can’t outplay either special counsel Robert Mueller or porn star Stormy Daniels.

Donald Trump

Trump’s greatest skill is his ability to recklessly insult anyone and everyone who he perceives to have opposed him, even in the most trivial matter. Consequently, he is having a difficult time attracting people to serve in his chaotic administration. As noted above, more people have quit or been fired than in any previous presidential administration. These are the people that he boasted were “the best” and would work diligently to MAGA the hell out of the nation.

Most recently Trump has suffered a breakdown in his legal team. This is a bad time for such problems with Mueller breathing down the wattle that passes for his neck, and multiple women aggressively challenging his assaultive behavior. His lead attorney, John Dowd, quit last week. And now the replacements he called in from Fox News, Joseph DiGenova and his wife Victoria Toensing, are abandoning plans to represent him.

This leaves Trump in a precarious position. He is in desperate need of reputable legal representation. His current personal lawyer, Jay Sekulow, is a well known hack who spends more time on TV than in courtrooms. And prominent lawyers who Trump has tried to recruit (i.e. Ted Olson, Bob Bennett) have declined his requests. So given Trump’s inability to coax decent attorneys to work for him, he has embarked on what he probably thinks is a charm offensive:

That’s right. When no one with any credentials will have anything to do with you, it’s time to start insulting everyone and then just wait until the resumes pour in. Trump’s tweets are blatantly offensive to any prospects who might have considered joining his team. First he accuses them of being driven only by “fame and fortune.” That’s a personality flaw that is all too apparent in Trump himself, so it isn’t surprising that he thinks everyone else is just as egocentric. Then he asserts that they are only looking for opportunities to unfairly bill their clients. And that’s another example of Trump projecting his psychoses onto others.

What decent lawyer is going to want to represent Trump after he calls them all greedy and narcissistic? Plus, they have seen the way he treats people who work for him. Humiliation is part of the job in the Trump sphere. Which makes his claim that many lawyers want to represent him rather implausible. Perhaps he means the ambulance chasers who actually do fit his greedy narcissist profile. Or maybe he’s thinking of the crop of sycophantic Fox News “lawyers” who would happily shift their Trump-fluffing from television to the White House. They wouldn’t have to change a thing. Just follow Trump’s lead: Continue denying that there was any collusion with Russia, and keep attacking Hillary Clinton. They could do it in their sleep. But don’t expect any attorneys who are respected in their field to sign on with this dumpster fire. They know that they are likely to lose to Mueller’s powerhouse team, but more importantly, that exposure to Trump is a guaranteed career killer.

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