In the past year Sean Hannity has hosted Donald Trump more than any other candidate for president. In fact, Trump’s visits account for about a third of the time of all candidate appearances on the program. So no one will be surprised that Trump was Hannity’s guest again last night (video below) giving him an opportunity to lash out at a media critic with his trademark hollow bluster.
It’s fair to say that Trump is never particularly rational in his tirades against critics. He generally avoids factual arguments and sticks with childish insults and irrelevancies that distract from the main issue. But in last night’s performance Trump ventured further off into confused hysteria that sounded more like one of Sarah Palin’s disjointed word salad babbling. The only way to properly convey the deranged oration is to let Trump do it himself. Here is what he told Hannity about his theory that Jeff Bezos, owner of both Amazon.com and the Washington Post, is engaged in a conspiracy against him in order to avoid paying taxes and preserve his alleged monopoly.
Trump: It’s interesting that you say that, because every hour we’re getting calls from reporters from The Washington Post, asking ridiculous questions, and I will tell you this is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos, who controls Amazon. Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He’s using The Washington Post for power, so the politicians in Washington don’t tax Amazon like they should be taxed. He’s getting absolutely away — he’s worried about me, and I think he said that to somebody, it was in some article, where he thinks I would go after him for anti-trust, because he’s got a huge anti-trust problem because he’s controlling so much. Amazon is controlling so much of what they’re doing, and what they’ve done is he bought this paper for practically nothing, and he’s using that as a tool for political power, against me and against other people and I’ll tell you what, we can’t let him get away with it. So he’s got about 20, 25, I just heard they’re taking these really bad stories — I mean they’re, you know, wrong – I don’t even say bad, they’re wrong and in many cases, they have no proper information and they’re putting them together, they’re slopping them together, and they’re going to do a book and the book is going to be all false stuff, because the stories are so wrong and the reporters, I mean, one after another — so what they’re doing is he’s using that as a political instrument to try and stop anti-trust, which he thinks I believe he’s anti-trust, in other words what he’s got is a monopoly and he wants to make sure I don’t get in. So, it’s one of those things, but I’ll tell you what, I’ll tell you what, what he’s doing’s wrong and the people are being — the whole system is rigged. You see a case like that, the whole system is rigged, whether it’s Hillary or whether it’s Bezos.
Sheesh, take a breath. Trump speaks like a paranoid schizophrenic in run-on sentences that weave around poorly expressed and incomplete thoughts. His fear that Bezos is coming after him is rooted in sheer delusion. Trump doesn’t say how Amazon is a monopoly, an assertion that ignores the reality of the online consumer goods market that includes behemoths like Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Target, Macy’s and many more. Nor does he explain the tax issue, although it is likely related to the collection of sales taxes from which all online enterprises are exempt under certain circumstances. Is Trump proposing to eliminate that popular exemption? He does go on at length, though, about the sloppiness of the Post’s proposed book that he hasn’t seen and hasn’t even been written.
Of course, the attacks on Amazon are just Trump’s way of retaliating against the Washington Post, whose Associate Editor Bob Woodward recently disclosed that “We have 20 people working on Trump, we’re going to do a book, we’re doing articles about every phase of his life” This is nothing unusual in the ordinary course of vetting candidates for high office and the Post is doing the same for Hillary Clinton. But from Trump’s perspective it’s an unholy invasion of privacy and a flagrant political attack. Consequently, an hysterical Trump aims both intellectually empty barrels at, not just the Post, but Amazon and its CEO Bezos. And fanboy Hannity’s response: “Wow!”
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.