Fox News Blacklists Conservatives for ‘Refusing to Fawn Over President Donald Trump’

Earlier this week Jane Mayer of the New Yorker published an exhaustive treatise detailing how Fox News and Donald Trump’s White House have become inextricably intertwined. The article presented numerous examples of the network working hand in hand with the administration to either whitewash Trump’s failures or malign his critics. While the political bias of Fox News is not a revelation, the aggregation of so much evidence in one story has a had a real impact.

Fox News, Censorship

Among those impacted was the Democratic National Committee (DNC), who shortly after the article was published reversed their prior position of allowing Fox News to host a Democratic primary debate. That was never a good idea, but it took the voluminous presentation by Mayer to convince the DNC. And subsequently, more testimony to Fox’s propagandistic aspirations have come to light.

Bernard Goldberg was once a familiar face on Fox’s right-wing roster. He was a frequent contributor to the O’Reilly Factor before Bill O’Reilly was fired for multiple instances of sexual harassment that cost the network millions of dollars in settlement fees. O’Reilly’s termination occurred just a couple of months after Trump’s inauguration. And it wasn’t long after that that Goldberg found himself person non grata for an entirely different reason. According to Newsweek (because Goldberg’s website is blocked by a paywall):

“Goldberg detailed how Fox News executives refused to allow conservatives to criticize Trump and other right-wing figures, such as Sarah Palin. Goldberg wrote a Tuesday blog post on his personal website saying top figures at the cable network sought retribution against him after he complained Sean Hannity and other hosts were only flattering Trump and Palin during interviews rather than pressing them journalistically.”

Goldberg went on to lambaste Fox and singled out Sean Hannity for conducting interviews that “resemble wet kisses a lot more than journalism.” And he further alleged that Fox News was blacklisting any conservative on the network who wasn’t unwaveringly adoring of Donald Trump. But the banishment was strictly limited to disloyal conservatives.

“Fox will tolerate a liberal criticizing President Trump, I said, but the network didn’t want conservatives taking shots at him. Sometimes I defended the president against what I thought was unfair criticism. But I was also critical of Mr. Trump, of his vindictiveness and his dishonesty.”

This is the environment at Fox News as described by a stalwart conservative commentator. And the treatment he’s receiving isn’t unique to him. Fox previously jettisoned conservative Trump critics like David Frum, Bill Kristol, and George Will. It’s clear that anyone who strays from the approved doctrine will be excommunicated and banished.

Now some people are aghast that the DNC nixed Fox as a host for their primary debates. It seems unarguable that a network that has devoted itself to destroying Democrats through insults and lies ought not to recognized as a legitimate news enterprise and rewarded for their abuse. Indeed, Fox’s rabid hatred for Democrats even led one of their top personalities, Lou Dobbs, to tweet a call for Democrats to be prosecuted for abuse of power and treason. It’s also rather hypocritical to criticize Democrats for blacklisting Fox when Fox itself is blacklisting their own conservatives who they now feel have wandered off the wingnut trail.

Some of the critics of the DNC’s decision claim that Fox has some reputable journalists and shouldn’t be shut out. But that’s an absurd argument. No one would attend a convention of their mortal enemies simply because there might be a handful of neutral bystanders hanging around. And those who say that Democrats who are “afraid” to appear on Fox aren’t fit for office are also missing the point. Nobody is afraid of Fox. It isn’t fear that brought about this decision. Quite the opposite. It’s having the courage to smack down a loud, aggressive, bullying opponent who means you nothing but harm. And it’s having the intelligence to deny a phony “news” operation the legitimacy of your presence and participation.

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

The portrait that Goldberg paints of the editorial prejudices at Fox News corroborates everything that Mayer revealed in her article. And that article corroborates everything that many critics of Fox have been saying for years. And while the biases of Fox have been well known for a long time, they have gotten much worse during the Trump era. It is now a fully devotional cult worshiping clan wherein there is no discernible distinction between Fox and the Trump administration. And that is no place hold a “fair and balanced” debate for any political party.

Kavanaugh to Be Interviewed On Fox News, the Network that Employed Multiple Sexual Predators

If you were looking for a sign that the Donald Trump White House is getting desperate with regard to the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, they just showed their cards. Fox News has announced – and Trump tweeted a promo for – Kavanaugh’s appearance Monday night on Fox News with Martha MacCallum.

Fox News Alert

There could not be a clearer indicator of Trump’s worrying that his nominee is floundering and is at risk for an embarrassing failure. It is unprecedented for a Supreme Court nominee to go on television to advance his nomination and defend himself against allegations that haven’t even been raised in Congress or investigated by the FBI.

What’s worse is that the television platform chosen by Kavanaugh (or was it the White House?) is Fox News. That’s the network whose founder and CEO, Roger Ailes, was fired due to multiple complaints of sexual harassment and assault. It’s the network whose biggest star, Bill O’Reilly, was fired for the same reasons, after paying out tens of millions of dollars in hush money to his victims. It’s the network whose president, Bill Shine, was fired for his shoddy handling of those affairs and his enabling of the wrongdoers. Shine is now Trump’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications.

With a history of such tawdry behavior by Fox News, it seems to be a highly inappropriate media outlet to try to whitewash Kavanaugh’s history of alleged abuses. And the choice of Martha MacCallum to interview Kavanaugh is also troubling. Obviously they didn’t want a man like Sean Hannity to do it. So they picked a woman who was one of Ailes’ first and most vigorous defenders. And it needs to be noted also that, while Kavanaugh is swatting softballs from MacCallum on Fox News, his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford has more respectfully declined any television offers:

“As I am not a lawyer or a Senator, I am relying on them and you to ensure that the committee will agree to conditions that allow me to testify in a fair setting that won’t disrupt families and become a media tv show. […] I have received an inordinate number of requests to appear on major TV shows to elucidate further information, to which I have not responded. My goal is to return soon to my workplace, once it is deemed safe for me and importantly, my students.”

The distasteful decision to parade Kavanaugh and his wife on TV in the hopes of generating some public sympathy is more evidence of how Trump is turning the White House into a Reality TV presidency. It’s all about making impressions and convincing the American people not to vote them off the island. And on that score they are failing miserably. Polls show that a majority of people oppose Kavanaugh’s confirmation. And that was before the latest charges were revealed. But if you’re moved by his revelation that he was a virgin until “many years” after high school, than you won’t want to miss this interview (Note: Kavanaugh being a virgin doesn’t make Dr. Ford’s allegations false. She never claimed that there was intercourse):

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

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

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

Donald Trump

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Fox News Enabler of Sexual Predators to Become Trump’s New Communications Director

The administration of Donald Trump is currently teeming with Fox News alumni serving in official roles and as outside advisors. They include National Security Advisor John Bolton, State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert, HHS Secretary Ben Carson, and Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell. Plus Sean Hannity, Jeanine Pirro, Lou Dobbs, and Pete Hegseth are just a few of the Foxies that Trump relies upon regularly for counsel. And let’s not forget that Trump himself is a former Fox News shill. That’s right. He had a recurring role on Fox & Friends for years with his “Mondays With Trump” segment.

Fox News, Sean Hannity, White House

Now it is being reported that Trump is close to hiring former Fox News president Bill Shine to be his communications director, a post that has been vacant since Hope Hicks left almost four months ago. Shine took over as president of Fox News after CEO and founder Roger Ailes was fired for multiple allegations of sexual harassment and abuse. But shortly thereafter, Shine was also jettisoned for coddling and protecting Ailes and other Fox deviants.

UPDATE: It’s official. Former Fox News Executive Bill Shine Accepts White House Communications Role.

Shine may be the perfect communications director for Trump. They share much in common. In addition to their shared histories with Fox News, they both have long records of disrespecting women. Trump presently is facing allegations by at least sixteen women who say he harassed and/or assaulted them. Shine has not been accused of mistreatment himself, but he is widely viewed as having knowingly covered up sexual misbehavior and crimes. He’s been named in several lawsuits filed against Ailes and Bill O’Reilly. For instance, former Fox News host Andrea Tantaros charged that Shine used private information to “to intimidate, terrorize and crush her career.”

Shine is also a close associate of Trump’s favorite Fox News defender and fluffer, Sean Hannity. And Hannity is reported to have actively pushed Trump to hire Shine. Prior to joining the executive ranks at Fox, Shine was Hannity’s producer. When Shine was first rumored to be on the chopping block Hannity freaked out. In response to the news he tweeted this:

Well, it was true, but FNC persists with an even more extremist agenda of facilitating Trump’s tyrannical aspirations and status as a racist cult leader. It is recognized by most observers that Fox News has transformed itself into a State TV enterprise serving only to advance White House propaganda. The bonds that link Fox to Trump just keep getting tied tighter with every day. Even Don Jr. has left his wife and five kids to date Fox’s Kimberly Guilfoyle.

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

In reality there is no practical difference between Fox News and Trump’s presidency. And with the possible addition of the Fox ex-president as the chief White House communications official, it is impossible to deny this unprecedented and unethical relationship between a president and the media. It is a parasitic perversion wherein Fox News slobbers over Trump with adoring tongue baths and targeted attacks on his critics. Meanwhile, Trump frequently tweets almost daily about what he’s watching on Fox News and even promotes their programming. At the same time he lashes out at all other media as “fake” news. One really has to wonder how Fox News can legitimately cover Trump considering their close personal and professional ties. But then “legitimate” would be the operative word, and one that is rarely associated with Fox News.

In Challenge to Fox News as the ‘Sexual Predator Network’, Newsmax is Courting Bill O’Reilly

For many years now Fox News has occupied the top of the ratings for cable news networks. Although they are getting beaten on a regular basis by MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow and others, they still generally outperform their competition, but by much smaller margins than in the past.

Bill O'Reilly, Donald Trump

What is not heralded as much by Fox News public relations is their uncontested position as the premiere “Sexual Predator Network.” Fox has a history with sexual deviants who were shielded, and even promoted, within their dysfunctional corporate family. They include the former CEO, Roger Ailes, and their once top star, Bill O’Reilly. Even Donald Trump, now better known as the pervert in the White House, was once another pervert on Fox News with a regular segment on Fox and Friends.

In addition to those perpetrators of sexual harassment and abuse, Fox News is crawling with infidels who cheat on their spouses with underlings on the job. Host Ed Henry was suspended for several weeks after his affair was publicized. But Trump fave Pete Hegseth and O’Reilly spawn Jesse Watters were never punished for the very same exploitative behavior.

However, Fox News may have some competition in the debauchery business. The New York Posts’ Page Six is reporting that the conservative news outlet Newsmax is in talks to bringing Bill O’Reilly back to the airwaves. Presumably because America has been missing the insights of a deviant who has paid out more than $32 million to hush up his personal sex scandals. Newmax must believe that the nation still wants to hear from people who have disgraced themselves through abhorrent mistreatment of women colleagues.

To make matters worse, Newsmax is also said to be courting former Fox News host Eric Bolling, who was fired for sending obscene photos of himself to his coworkers. Former Fox News host Greta Van Susteren is also in Newsmax’s sights as a recruitment target. Van Susteren herself has not been accused of any sexual misconduct, but she has said that such behavior at Fox News contributed to her reasons for quitting. According to Page Six, this line up (plus former Trump press secretary Sean Spicer) would form the basis for the Newsmax primetime block:

“An insider told Page Six, ‘The deals are not done yet, but talks are in the advanced stages, certainly with O’Reilly. The thinking is, following a 6 p.m. news show, Greta would anchor the 7 p.m. hour, O’Reilly would be back at 8 p.m., and Bolling could smoothly continue on at 9 p.m. Spicer and his cohorts would go on at 10 p.m., with the later slot allowing the show to be looser. But the deals are not yet signed and sealed.'”

The regrouping of these Fox News rejects is less surprising when you consider that the Newsmax Media CEO Christopher Ruddy, is a close friend of Fox News addict, Donald Trump. Ruddy previously brought in ex-Fox EVP Michael Clemente to run the his broadcast division. So it looks like they’re trying to get the band back together. [For what it’s worth, a source close to Newsmax told Brian Stelter of CNN that “there have been no negotiations at all.”].

But in reassembling some of the most repugnant characters, who were even too disgusting for Fox to continue employing, Newsmax is setting itself up to take the sexual predator crown from Fox. Perhaps they could bolster their schedule by reaching out to Charlie Rose and Matt Lauer. Maybe some comic relief with an all new Bill Cosby Hour. And all of it could be produced by Harvey Weinstein. Newsmax can probably get all of this “talent” at a considerable discount from their previous salaries. And they would surely appeal to disaffected Fox fans who don’t think the network is misogynistic enough.

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

Serial Sexual Predator Bill O’Reilly Offers to Protect Sarah Huckabee Sanders From the Media

Donald Trump’s press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, has been called a lot of things. Most notable (and on target) is a lying propagandist for a criminal chief executive. But she has never been criticized for being a wallflower who can’t defend herself under fire. Especially when the fire is coming from the Washington press corps who she encounters on a near daily basis.

Fox News, Bill O'Reilly, Sarah Huckabee Sanders

Enter Bill O’Reilly: The disgraced has-been who struggles to get attention for his lame blog now that he has been banished from his Fox News perch. O’Reilly has become a pathetic wretch who thinks he can still corral an audience after the disclosures of numerous payoffs to women accusing him of sexual harassment and abuse. At least New York’s Attorney General had the decency to resign.

The Hollywood Reporter caught up with O’Reilly at a party for Richard Grenell, Trump’s new ambassador to Germany (and a former Fox News contributor). They witnessed a discussion that O’Reilly had with Sanders that tells you something about both of them. According the Reporter O’Reilly said that he “feels for” Sanders, who he said is “not able to fight back when attacked by beat reporters, unlike her boss, President Donald Trump.” O’Reilly posted their exchange on his website:

“I said, ‘Ms. Sanders, with all due respect, if you ever need me to stand next to you in those press briefings, I will volunteer to do that. And, if somebody gets out of line, I will tell them exactly what I think of their behavior,’ “

Horrors! O’Reilly’s threatening to tell some unsuspecting reporters what he thinks of them (like they care). And where in that self-serving slobber was any hint of “due respect” for Sanders? O’Reilly is implying that lady-folk Sanders can’t do her job. And although she sees her job as lying to the American people everyday, she’s doing that pretty well. She obviously doesn’t need the “loofah man” to rescue the poor defenseless female from the mob of ravaging journalists. Let’s face it, the only thing O’Reilly wants to do is get some airtime on real TV, as opposed to the little-watched videos he makes in his Long Island basement. He went on to babble:

“I told her that she is doing a great job, in the sense that it’s not a partisan play. She’s representing her country in very difficult circumstances, extremely difficult, and she’s a patriot — you know, she’s taken enormous amount of abuse, enormous.”

In O’Reilly’s cartoon brain what Sanders does isn’t partisan? That’s a symptom of acute grey matter rot. And he attempts to portray the press secretary as being on a par with the military. Come on, what’s so difficult about answering questions from reporters? And if anything makes this more difficult than usual, it’s the dishonesty and ignorance of the president she works for.

The Reporter’s article says that Sanders laughed when O’Reilly made this suggestion. That’s a fairly appropriate response. But it doesn’t go nearly far enough to shame O’Reilly for belittling the woman whose job it is to speak for the President. O’Reilly’s misogyny is evident in his presumption that he would be necessary or helpful as a protector for Sanders. If anything, he would probably seek to take advantage of her to advance his own interests. Because that’s what narcissistic misogynists like O’Reilly (and his pal Donald Trump) do.

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

Trump Told Fox News that the U.S. is Just as Bad as Russia and Tried to Make Comey Agree

The ABC interview of James Comey Sunday night had some juicy quotables. The interview precedes the release of his book, A Higher Loyalty, which is currently number one on Amazon. Comey’s opinion that Donald Trump is “morally unfit to be president” seems to be getting the most play in the morning-after media. But Comey also introduced several “possibilities” that are hard to ignore. He said that it’s possible that Trump is “compromised by the Russians.” He said that there is possible evidence of Trump obstructing justice. And he said that it is possible that Trump “was with prostitutes peeing on each other in Moscow.”

Comey Trump

All of those are harrowing thoughts when applied to the President of the United States. And particularly so when they come from one of the highest law enforcement officials in the American federal government. The harmful prospects implied by those remarks cannot be overstated. And they will surely play a part in the unfolding investigation being conducted by special prosecutor Robert Mueller.

In addition, there was a surprising allusion to Trump’s favorite cable news network, Fox News. It reveals the extent to which he is preoccupied with everything he sees and hears from his shadow policy advisors on the network, who too often become his actual White House advisors. The exchange occurred when George Stephanopoulos asked Trump about his relationship with Vladimir Putin, a unambiguously brutal dictator who Trump has never been able to say a single bad word about. This is what ensued (transcript here, video below):

“The Super Bowl pre-game show where– and I hadn’t asked any questions about this, but the president was just talking about it, he had given an answer to Bill O’Reilly that had been much criticized across the political spectrum when he had said, in response to a question, that he respected Vladimir Putin and said, ‘That doesn’t mean I’m going to get along with him.’

“And then O’Reilly responded, ‘But he’s a killer.” And the president responded, in substance, “But we’re killers, too. You think our country’s so innocent.’ I forget the exact words, but that’s the gist of it. And that moral equivalence, between the people of our government and Putin’s thugs, had generated a lot of controversy. […]

“He was telling me it was a good answer and then said – gave me an opening by saying, ‘You think it was a great answer. You think it was a good answer.’ And then he was starting to move on. And I jumped in and I said, ‘Mr. President, the first part of the answer was fine, not the second part. We’re not the kind of killers that Putin is.’

And when I said that, the weather changed in the room. And like a shadow crossed his face and his eyes got this strange, kinda hard look. And I thought in that moment, ‘I’ve just done something unusual maybe.’ And then (SNAP) it passed and the meeting was over. And, ‘Thanks for coming in,’ and – and Priebus walked me out.”

Comey regarded that exchange as having an unintended positive result. He said that “by interrupting him and also criticizing him to his face,” it ended any personal relationship between him and Trump. It allowed him to “keep a distance that we need to keep from him.” But it also showed that Trump has an unhealthy obsession with whatever he says on Fox News being validated by everyone with whom he comes into contact. Trump desperately wanted Comey to agree that what he told O’Reilly was brilliant.

Of course, what he told O’Reilly was an insult to America and blatantly unpatriotic. Even O’Reilly thought so. Putin is guilty of murdering his political opponents and critical journalists. He is a cold-blooded tyrant who thirsts for world domination. Whatever flaws the U.S. has, they are not on that level of evil. But Comey’s refusal to suck up to Trump caused the President to freeze up. And it may have been at that moment that he decided that Comey had to go.

The cumulative effect of the Russia investigation and Comey’s lack of adoring fealty to Trump sealed his fate. So ironically, Fox News, the PR division of the Trump White House, may have inadvertently played a role in proving that Trump obstructed justice. Who’da thunk it?

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

Court: Bill O’Reilly Can’t Suppress Past Sexual Harassment Settlements – Trump Should Be Worried

Disgraced former Fox News shill, Bill O’Reilly, has been reduced to running a little-visited video blog. His ranting is identical to the fact-averse garbage he spewed on Fox, but is only seen by a few hundred of Billo’s deadenders. For the most part he is too insignificant to bother reporting about. However, a recent court ruling could have ramifications that far exceed his puny reach.

Bill O'Reilly, Donald Trump

A federal court just ruled on a motion by O’Reilly to suppress his past sexual harassment settlements. The court ruled against O’Reilly’s motion to seal the settlement agreements he had previously imposed on multiple women who accused him of harassment. As CNN reported:

“Deborah Batts, the judge presiding over the defamation suit, ruled Tuesday that O’Reilly ‘has failed to present compelling countervailing factors that could overcome the presumption of public access’ to the agreements. Batts also said O’Reilly ‘has not even come close to rebutting this First Amendment presumption’ that favors public access to documents.”

It is likely that as a result of this, details of O’Reilly’s abusive behavior that were not known before will become public as this defamation suit proceeds. Not that that will have much impact on his perception by most Americans who already know that he’s a sleazeball. But the decision foreshadows circumstances that are certainly going to arise for Donald Trump.

Trump is also being sued for defamation by women who allege sexual harassment and/or abuse. Adult film actress Stormy Daniels, who has been litigating to rescind a Trump non-disclosure agreement, recently amended her suit to include allegations of defamation by Trump and his attorney, Michael Cohen. In addition, former Apprentice contestant, Summer Zervos, filed a lawsuit charging that Trump defamed her in the course of denying her allegation of sexual assault. Two weeks ago a judge denied Trump’s motion to dismiss the case.

In both the Daniels and Zervos suits, the defamation consisted of Trump’s public remarks disparaging his accusers as liars. So whether or not these women prevail in court rests on their ability to provide evidence that their assertions are true. Both have already demonstrated that that won’t be a problem. What’s more, there are at least a dozen other women who could file similar complaints.

Trump has adamantly denied that he engaged in any sexually inappropriate behavior. But he went further than that to declare himself the victim and his accusers of perpetrating “one of the great political smear campaigns in the history of our country.” Those comments, which were aimed at all of his accusers, are unambiguously defamatory. And he even threatened to file lawsuits himself:

“Every woman lied when they came forward to hurt my campaign. Total fabrication. The events never happened. Never. All of these liars will be sued after the election is over.”

The ruling in the O’Reilly case portends the legal peril that Trump faces for his own abusive conduct. And his public, self-incriminating statements only make matters worse. It could mean that many of the allegations against him will be aired more fully as these lawsuits proceed. And finally the women he victimized will get the justice due them, and our Sexual-Predator-in-Chief will face the consequences of being a reprehensible jackass. For some idea of just how disgusting Trump is, watch the video below of the women he assaulted describing their ordeals.

Allowing Trump to remain in the White House sends a terrible message to all Americans, particularly women and girls. If Trump isn’t impeached for obstruction of justice, collusion with Russia, financial corruption, undermining the free press, or being a pathological liar and malignant narcissist, then his sexual depravity and criminality should be more than reason enough.

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

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.

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.