WHUT? Tucker Carlson of Fox News Boldly Refuses to Verify that His Disinformation is Reliable

The Olympic grade hypocrisy at Fox News continues to shine through everything they do. And nowhere is that more evident than with matters related to the coronavirus and the tragedies it has wrought on America, largely attributable to the lies and disinformation disseminated by Fox and Donald Trump. Studies show that the nation is currently suffering through what can accurately be described as The Fox News Pandemic.

Fox News. Tucker Carlson

Leading the way down to the depths of viral hell is Fox’s Senior Deceiver, Tucker Carlson. He has already peddled dangerous and flagrant falsehoods such as his promotion of quack cures, his paranoid conspiracy theories that the vaccines don’t work, his support for the unlawful use of fake vaccination cards, and his urging of viewers to make false police reports of child abuse against parents whose children wear face masks.

Despite that record of deliberate and deadly deception, Carlson is now complaining about social media sites trying to encourage the accurate and honest sharing of information upon which lives may depend. Because who would want that? On Wednesday night’s episode he delivered a diatribe against Instagram for what he falsely said was censorship. He was triggered by a message he received when he tried to post a video that was lousy with lies:

“When we put that video on Instagram the following message appeared: “Make sure the information is reliable before sharing!” And then it attempts to redirect you to a site, “Get Vaccine Info.” From some approved site. I guess info about policies at a company they don’t work at? So if you’re not allowed to explain information that you have first hand, credible knowledge of, like your own employer’s own policies, then what rights do you have?”

So Carlson is outraged that Instagram politely asked that he be certain of the reliability of what he was about to post. How dare they care about the accuracy of critical health data? Especially when they are asking someone who is so renowned for spreading lies that his employer, Fox News, argued in court that he couldn’t be guilty of defamation because “no reasonable person” would believe him.

Carlson falsely characterized Instagram’s message as censorship, claiming that he was not allowed to post his dishonest video. He also put his complaint in a chyron that read “Big Tech Tries to Censor this Show Once Again.” However, there was no censorship because Instagram allowed him to click through the message and post his video, which he did.

Another chyron in this segment told another lie regarding the video that he did, in fact, post on Instagram. This one read “There is no Vaccine Mandate at Fox News.” The truth is that Fox News has a policy that does mandate that their employees get vaccinated. It’s a conditional mandate that requires them to be tested daily if they are not vaccinated. That’s almost exactly the same as the policy that President Biden recently announced, except that Biden’s policy is actually less strict. requiring only weekly tests for the unvaccinated.

Apparently Carlson doesn’t know the Fox News position on vaccinations, despite having “first hand” knowledge of his “own employer’s own policies.” And in his ignorance he has slandered Biden as a tyrant for “forcing” people to get vaccinated. But if Biden is “waging war” on the American people, than Fox News has escalated it. Yet, as was scathingly pointed out by MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, Carlson is too cowardly to call out his bosses, or demonstrate an iota of integrity by quitting. And that goes for the rest of the Fox News roster of hypocrites who are nearly as bad as Carlson.

NOTE: Twitter suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

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

SCAREDY FOX: Why Did Fox News Censor Trump’s ‘Big Lie’ Rant? Pending Lawsuits?

A startling event occurred on Sunday that may be unique in modern times. Donald Trump’s spokes-shill, Liz Harrington, posted a tweet that exposed a bona fide case of media censorship. But this assault on free speech was not the work of the usual suspects among the “fake news” purveyors. It wasn’t CNN or the New York Times that clipped Trump’s officious oratory.

Donald Trump, Fox News, White House

Nope. Harrington caught the thought police at Fox News in the act of making unauthorized edits to Trump’s divine discourse during an interview with Fox News host Dan Bongino. Most of this segment was filled with the typical Trumpian adoration by the Fox host and hysterical incoherence by Trump. But Harrington noticed something terribly wrong when she went to post Trump’s sermon on Twitter (which is a flagrant violation of their terms of service. Feel free to report it). She tweeted her discovery saying…

“WOW. So I went to post a clip from President Trump’s great interview on @dbongino last night, and lo and behold, Fox News EDITED and CHANGED what President Trump said, censoring out 45 accurately describing the Fake Election.”

First of all, it’s “former” President Trump. Secondly, it was more of a love-fest than an interview. Thirdly, what was edited out was not accurate. That said, she was quite right that some editing took place. What was excised was Trump lying again about the 2020 presidential election being “stolen” from him. He said that…

“You have a Fake Election, you have an election with voter abuse and with voter fraud like nobody has ever seen before and based on that and based on what happened they are destroying our Country.”

So the question is why would Fox News cut out this 14 second portion of a 16 minute interview? It could hardly be due to time constraints.

There are, however, a couple of plausible reasons to expunge this particular commentary. Fox News is already the subject of two multibillion dollar lawsuits (one by Dominion Voting Systems, and another by Smartmatic) for defamation as result of the network’s dishonest assertions, on Trump’s behalf, that that the election was “rigged.”

So Fox News has a strong self-interest in avoiding exposing themselves to further legal liability by providing additional evidence that supports the case against them. That would be sufficient reason to cut Trump’s incessant whining about voter fraud for which he he has never been able to provide any proof in the 60-plus court cases he lost.

What’s more, by posting Trump’s lies, Fox News could be placing themselves at risk of being banned by Twitter – just like Trump – for posting false and potentially harmful misinformation. It is Trump’s lies about the election that incited the deadly insurrection at the Capitol on January 6th.

Fox News has already shown that they are worried about being associated with Trump’s “Big Lie.” Last month Fox refused to air an ad by the MyPillow conspiracy crackpot, Mike Lindell. The ad was to promote his “cyber symposium” that he said would “prove” that Trump won the election. Needless to say, the “proof” exists only in his diseased mind. However, Fox News wasn’t going to take the chance of getting further into legal jeopardy, so they nixed the ad. And in retaliation, Lindell pulled all of his ads from Fox News. And since MyPillow is Tucker Carlson’s biggest advertiser, that leaves his show with hardly any major ads at all.

It will be interesting to see how this censorship melodrama plays out. Currently Trump’s cult disciples are in a tizzy online, lambasting Fox News as the “enemy of the people,” and pledging to boycott the network forever. Harrington is appearing on whatever mousy Fox News wannabe that will book her to bad mouth Fox for caving in to the “Deep State.” And Trump is still stuck with with his thumb in his mouth, unable to get his malicious messaging out. Could this be any more fun? Stay tuned and have plenty of popcorn ready.

NOTE: Twitter suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

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

GOP Bill Would Force Twitter to Allow Trump’s Inflammatory Lies and Disinformation

The Republican Party has been engaging in a full court press to cripple democracy across the country. They tried to obstruct and/or overturn the 2020 presidential election (and Trump is still doing so). They passed bills aimed at suppressing and disenfranchising voters, particularly those of people of color. They are disseminating the racist “white replacement theory” to frighten their base that “others” are conspiring to replace them in the electorate.

Donald Trump, Toilet, Bathrobe

Now they are upping the ante by advocating trashing the Constitution in order to impose totalitarian control over social media companies who fail to comply with their demands. NBC News is reporting that…

“Florida is on track to be the first state in the nation to punish social media companies that ban politicians like former President Donald Trump under a bill approved Thursday by the state’s Republican-led Legislature. […] the proposal appears destined to be challenged in court after a tech industry trade group called it a violation of the First Amendment speech rights of corporations.”

Let’s be clear about this. Florida Republicans are seeking to force private companies to bend to their partisan political will. Social media services like Twitter and Facebook took the extraordinary step of suspending the accounts of Donald Trump after his reckless and dishonest posts led to deadly riots in Washington, D.C. by insurrections for whom he professed his love. The sole purpose of the new law is to placate Trump and make it easier for him to advance his self-serving, anti-democratic crusade. The article went on to note that “Republicans have called social media bans unfair censorship,” and that…

“The Florida bill would prohibit social media companies from knowingly ‘deplatforming’ political candidates, meaning a service could not ‘permanently delete or ban’ a candidate. Suspensions of up to 14 days would still be allowed, and a service could remove individual posts that violate its terms of service.

“The state’s elections commission would be empowered to fine a social media company $250,000 a day for statewide candidates and $25,000 a day for other candidates if a company’s actions are found to violate the law.”

The state has absolutely no legal authority to force private companies to provide a platform for any individual. The constitutional protection against censorship applies only to the government. But Florida’s Republicans argue that the wide influence of social media is cause for increased regulation. If that’s true, then shouldn’t the same principle apply to television and newspapers that also enjoy wide influence? By that standard, shouldn’t Fox News be forced to carry my stories and opinions, and be fined if they refuse?

Republicans used to believe in something called a “free market.” They insisted that business should be free of government intervention and that the marketplace should decide the winners. Trump even made that argument recently when he predicted that Twitter and Facebook would fail without him and he floated a proposal to start his own social media company.

That’s competition. And while Trump’s alt-Twitter would likely suffer a humiliating defeat, at least it would be decided in the free market. Florida’s bill upends all of that and puts the boot of autocracy on businesses that they regard as disobedient. Which is further proof that Republicans are flaming hypocrites who will discard any and all principles when they don’t adhere to their advantage.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

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

Dr. Fauci Tells Rachel Maddow How the Trump Admin ‘Blocked’ Him From Her Show

The differences between the negligent, incompetent, and wantonly corrupt administration of Donald Trump, and that of the incoming Joe Biden administration have been evident in just the few hours that Biden has been President. The stench of ego-driven criminality has been replaced by the refreshing fragrance of experience and compassion. And America has heaved a massive, collective sigh of relief.

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Donald Trump, Anthony Fauci, Censored

Among those relieved by the passing of the Trump era is Dr. Anthony Fauci, the widely respected expert on infectious diseases. His presence on Trump’s phony Coronavirus Task Force – that was nothing more than a thinly veiled reelection campaign operation – was awkward, to say the least. He frequently had to cover his face in shame as Trump dispensed pure idiocy and flagrant falsehoods. Often he was ignored or even uninvited to the press briefings altogether.

Those times are over. Dr. Fauci was interviewed Friday for the first time on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show. It was the sort of enlightening hour of useful information that the public sorely needs during these troubling times. And Dr. Fauci was clearly pleased to have the opportunity to communicate with Maddow and her audience. In fact, he addressed his prior absence from the show during this exchange:

Maddow: Dr. Fauci…The country really trusts you in particular, but we’ve seen this sort of disappearance of, and sort of muzzling of, these other senior folks within the government. Do you think that we’ll have more access to you, both the press and the public?

Fauci: I’m positive of it. I’ve been wanting to come on your show for months and months. You’ve been asking me to come on your show for months and months, and it’s just gotten blocked. Let’s call it what it is: It just got blocked because they didn’t like the way you handle things, and they didn’t want me on. I mean it was just so clear when we sent it down. “Why would you want to go on Rachel Maddow’s show?” “Well, because I like her and she’s really good.” “It doesn’t make any difference. Don’t do it.”

I don’t think you’re going to see that now. I think you’re going to see a lot of transparency. You might not see everybody as often as you want, but you’re not gonna see deliberate holding back of good people when the press asks for them. We were assured that that’s the case. And that goes along with what you were mentioning before about different types of pressures that were put on. It was a tough situation. It really was.

Those gracious and honest remarks also reveal the dangerous censorship by Trump of critical information necessary for the preservation of life during a deadly pandemic. Trump never cared about the welfare of the American people, particularly if it contrasted with his own narcissistic self-interest. Dr. Fauci said as much in another interview on CNN (where he had also been barred by Trump from appearing) when asked…

John Berman: Did the lack of candor over the last year and lack of facts, in some cases, cost lives?
Fauci: You know, it very likely did… When you start talking about the things that make no sense medically and no sense scientifically, that clearly is not helpful.

In the weeks, months, and years to come, we are going to learn more and more about how unconscionably destructive Trump was for the nation and the world. And the damage he’s done will not be repaired overnight. But at least we won’t be seeing the sort of suppression and deliberate disinformation going forward that was so painfully prevalent while Trump was occupying the White House.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. And you can follow this surrogate Twitter account here. Thanks for your support.

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

Sexual Predator Donald Trump Hypocritically Threatens NBC’s ‘License’ Over Weinstein Story

As his Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, is being grilled in the Senate, it appears that Donald Trump is striving mightily to shift attention back to himself. So naturally he’s emulating the totalitarian policies of censorship and oppression, especially with regard to the media, that he admires so much. He frequently refers to the press as “the enemy of the people,” a phrase lifted straight from Stalin era tyranny. And even after being schooled on the historical horrors of his reference, Trump persists in his flagrantly anti-constitutional harangues.

Donald Trump, Censorship

On Tuesday morning, during his regularly scheduled Twitter tirade, Trump took another swipe at the press in the most appalling terms. Beginning with his incessant repetition of his now tedious “fake news” rhetoric, Trump launches into a peculiar criticism of NBC News for their handling of Ronan Farrow’s groundbreaking expose of Harvey Weinstein:

To be sure, there were some problems with how the network dealt with the allegations Farrow unveiled. NBC’s brass did not seem to be especially supportive of his efforts. Farrow charges that they tried to prevent him from proceeding with his investigation. NBC, however, claims that they just didn’t think the story was sufficiently documented. But the network didn’t try to interfere with Farrow taking the story to another publisher. In fact, according to Farrow, they suggested it. Subsequently, Farrow’s story ignited the #MeToo movement that has brought accountability to dozens of cretinous characters in the media, business, and politics. And it isn’t over.

What makes this so unbelievable is the shocking obliviousness on Trump’s part to reignite the Weinstein scandal. Of all the people to traffic in the sewer of sexual harassment and assault, Trump would be at or near the bottom of the list. After all, there are still outstanding allegations of the most repugnant misconduct by Trump from at least sixteen women (see video below). These charges have never been properly investigated and Trump has not been held accountable, as others in public life have.

When the President of the United States is credibly charged with actual sex crimes, it ought to be addressed in the press, the Congress, and especially the courts. But Trump has been given a free pass for his assaultive acts. For him to raise the matter of similar behavior by others is an Olympic-grade feat of suppression of self-awareness and shame.

And to make matters worse, Trump adds to the remarkably amoral mindset that led to this tweet by using it as reason to punish NBC via what he calls a “Look at their license.” What exactly does he intend to look at? There is no government authority that grants licenses to news organizations permitting them to engage in journalism. In fact, the Constitution explicitly prohibits it. Perhaps Trump was aiming at the licenses of local broadcasters. But even Trump’s own FCC chief, Ajit Pai, rebuked Trump’s prior license revocation fantasies saying that “The FCC does not have the authority to revoke a license of a broadcast station based on the content.”

So Trump is, once again, just mouthing off in total ignorance as he attempts to threaten the media and chill any effort to criticize him. That isn’t going to work any better now than it has worked in all of his previous attempts at censorship. It just certifies that he is a wannabe dictator who aspires to silence any dissenting voices, much the way his heroes, Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and Kim Jong Un, have done in their countries, where free speech is a crime against the state. Consequently, Trump will have to be satisfied with his version of State TV, aka Fox News.

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

Trump Threatens to ‘Take Away Credentials’ of Media that Doesn’t Slobber Him with Praise

Reporters Without Borders publishes an annual World Press Freedom Index. The most recent study reported that the United States fell to 45th place, a new low. Much of that decline was attributed explicitly to Donald Trump, whose open hostility to the media has been a core component of his presidency.

Donald Trump

Continuing to push forward with his aggressively anti-First Amendment agenda, Trump took to his official presidential policy platform – Twitter – and posted a comment that is a further demonstration of just how extreme his hatred of the free press is. This tweet should frighten all Americans who value constitutional principles and the indispensable role the press plays in democracy:

There is so much wrong with that tweet that it’s hard to know where to begin. First of all, the economy has been expanding for nearly ten years, and that expansion began near the beginning of President Obama’s first term. Contrary to Trump’s claim, for which he provides no factual support, the economy has largely stalled as of late. The Dow Jones is down year-to-date. And Trump has been undeservedly taking credit for an economy whose performance has trailed that of Obama’s.

Secondly, Trump is actually admitting that, in his view, any media that is negative is therefore fake. It isn’t surprising to learn that he feels that way, but it’s a little surprising that he says so publicly.

Third, Trump’s reference to network news being ninety-one percent negative about him was likely taken from Sean Hannity’s program last night. Hannity reported that statistic based on a dubious study by the ultra-rightist media watchdogs at NewsBusters. And he wrapped the biased data in the same package as Trump, fretting about his negative coverage despite the utopia he’s supposedly presiding over. This is another example of Hannity serving as a close advisor to this fumbling president (video below):

Hannity: “President Trump’s poll numbers, they’re rising. This despite a Newsbusters study showed that newtwork news broadcasts in this country featured negative stories about the President 90% of the time. Wow. And I told you journalism is dead.”

Notice the similarities between Hannity’s commentary and Trump’s tweet. But the most troubling part of Trump’s tweet is his threat to revoke press credentials for any media that fails to exalt the Dear Leader. Trump has long pined for a submissive press corps that only celebrates his every word and deed. This isn’t the first (or twentieth) time that Trump has attempted to punish the press by banishing them from the White House or worse, challenge their licenses. Last October he explicitly tweeted that threat saying:

The fact that Trump repeatedly takes this censorious position is evidence that it isn’t just an offhand remark that he doesn’t mean literally. He is deadly serious about his intention to gag any media that dares to criticize him. And in advance of that he has been avoiding any independent media for most of the last year. He’s only held one solo news conference (February 2017, just after the inauguration) during his entire presidency. And he hasn’t given an interview to a non-friendly (i.e. Fox News) outlet in the past year. What’s he afraid of?

The World Press Freedom study noticed these disturbing trends for American journalism. They addressed them specifically in their report as reasons for downgrading the U.S. position:

“In 2017, the 45th President of the United States helped sink the country to 45th place by labeling the press an ‘enemy of the American people’ in a series of verbal attacks toward journalists, attempts to block White House access to multiple media outlets, routine use of the term ‘fake news’ in retaliation for critical reporting, and calling for media outlets’ broadcasting licenses to be revoked.”

The American people need to be alert with regard to the threat that Trump represents to the freedom of the press and the sustainability of democracy. These are not idle threats made as political rhetoric. They are dangerous challenges made by a wannabe dictator who truly believes he has the right to muzzle the media and mislead the people. We the people cannot let that happen.

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

Trump’s Zeal to Reform ‘Sham’ Libel Laws Would Expose Him to 100’s of Defamation Lawsuits

Donald Trump opened a cabinet meeting Wednesday morning by welcoming the press to “the studio.” It may have been a sarcastic remark, but it reveals his tendency to view everything from the perspective of a former reality TV game show host which, of course, he is. The portion of the meeting that was allowed to be televised just went downhill from there.

Donald Trump

The cringeworthy public appearances by this president continue to mount, although he seems to be entirely oblivious to how embarrassing they are. Underscoring that, during this cabinet meeting Trump made a point of exalting his own performance during an addled immigration PR stunt on Tuesday. He said that reporters had sent him emails calling it “One of the greatest meetings they’ve ever witnessed.”

WTF? That’s just more proof that he’s totally nuts. The meeting was an unmitigated bore except for the part when he zoned out and accidentally endorsed a “clean” DACA bill. He had to be bailed out by GOP leader Kevin McCarthy, but he still didn’t appear to grasp what he said that was wrong. And I’d love to see those alleged emails. Given Trump’s reputation as a notoriously pathological liar, it’s fairly certain that no such emails exist.

Most of the televised meeting was consumed by Trump praising himself for things he never did. The only part of the meeting that covered anything substantive was when Trump made a plea to reform libel laws. He said that:

“We are going to take a strong look at our country’s libel laws so that when somebody says something that is false and defamatory about someone, that person will have meaningful recourse in our courts. If somebody says something that is totally false, and knowingly false, that the person that has been abused, defamed, libeled, will have meaningful recourse.

“Our current libel laws are a sham and a disgrace and do not represent American values or American fairness. So we’re gonna take a strong look at that. We want fairness. You can’t say things that are false, knowingly false, and be able to smile as money pours into your bank account.”

Let’s set aside for the moment that no one in America has made more knowingly false, defamatory comments than Donald Trump. And frequently they served to enrich him. But make no mistake, this is a blatant attempt to seek revenge against anyone who dares to be critical of Trump. He is striking back at Michael Wolff, the author of “Fire and Fury,” and the members of his staff who were quoted in the book. He is targeting those behind the Steele Dossier and the news organizations that published it. This is a position that threatens freedom of the press, which he has made a priority of his presidency.

What’s interesting about this, however, is that the proposed reforms he would consider would very likely backfire. No one has exposed himself to more potential libel allegations than Donald Trump. Every time he calls a reporter a liar, or asserts as fact that unnamed sources don’t exist, or alleges that a story was deliberately made up, Trump is slandering those reporters and harming their reputations and careers. Every time he lashes out with his juvenile nicknames at people he is claiming are “lyin,” “failing,” or “crooked,” he is asserting a falsehood that could trigger litigation under his reform.

And then there are the outright lies that Trump has told about his critics and political foes. Think of the lawsuit that might have been filed after Trump accused Ted Cruz’s father of being part of the conspiracy to assassinate President Kennedy. Could President Obama have sued after being charged with wiretapping Trump? There have been literally hundreds of comments and tweets by Trump that were demonstrably false, but manifestly injured their targets. For instance, what about the sixteen women who have spoken out about Trump’s sexual abuse? He called every one of them liars. One of them (so far) has filed a defamation suit which Trump, ironically, is seeking to have dismissed. So much for opening up the libel laws.

It’s plain that Trump’s only purpose here is to silence his critics. There are plenty of safeguards in current law that protect people from deliberate slander and libel. Even if committed by the media. The truth of that is demonstrated by Trump’s own lawyer who just filed a defamation lawsuit against Buzzfeed for publishing the Steele Dossier. He’ll have his day in court (which he’ll likely end up regretting). But Trump isn’t interested in truth. He’s seeking the sort of tyrannical control of the press that all dictators lust after. But he is to stupid to recognize how destructive it would be to democracy. If the consequences weren’t so horrendous, it might actually be fun to let Trump have his way and then see how many people sue him.

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

Trump ‘Honored’ by Journalists’ Organization for ‘Undermining Global Press Freedom’

Many American presidents have had a contentious relationship with the press. At times it has become a bitter rivalry wherein the media was regarded as a troublesome annoyance that embraced deliberate biases. But most of the time there remained a deep-rooted respect for the freedom of the press and the crucial role it plays in a democracy.

Donald Trump Censorship

All of that changed when Donald Trump was inaugurated January 20, 2017. Trump has been more openly hostile to the media than any chief executive before him. His hatred is expressed bluntly with insults and accusations that exceed reasonable criticism. He calls out reporters by name as “sleazy,” liars,” and “horrible people.” On more than one occasion he has labeled the press as “the enemy of the American people.” That isn’t a critique, it’s a declaration of war.

Last week Trump announced that he would be hosting an event to commemorate “The Most Dishonest and Corrupt Media Awards of the Year.” It’s just the sort of shallow stunt to be expected from a former reality game show TV host. And Trump’s dimwitted predictability removes any sense of excitement the event might have had. Let’s face it, CNN, the New York Times, and the like will dominate his phony ceremony.

In anticipation of this dull affair, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has produced their own roster of honorees that they dubbed The Press Oppressors Awards:

“Amid the public discourse of fake news and President Trump’s announcement via Twitter about his planned “fake news” awards ceremony, CPJ is recognizing world leaders who have gone out of their way to attack the press and undermine the norms that support freedom of the media.”

The CPJ bestowed their awards on several world figures whose record of oppression and censorship was noteworthy for their severity and brutality. Not surprisingly, Trump was honored twice. The headline award that Trump snagged was for “Overall Achievement in Undermining Global Press Freedom.” The CPJ wrote that Trump:

“…has consistently undermined domestic news outlets and declined to publicly raise freedom of the press with repressive leaders such as Xi, Erdo?an, and Sisi. Authorities in China, Syria, and Russia have adopted Trump’s ‘fake news’ epithet, and Erdogan has applauded at least one of his verbal attacks on journalists. Under Trump’s administration, the Department of Justice has failed to commit to guidelines intended to protect journalists’ sources, and the State Department has proposed to cut funding for international organizations that help buttress international norms in support of free expression.”

Trump was also recognized as the runner up for “Most Thin-skinned.” Given his notorious narcissism and thirst for revenge, He must have been a fierce challenger for this award. The CPJ’s decision rested on Trump’s threat “to ‘open-up’ U.S. libel laws, sue news outlets, and subject their broadcast licenses to review.” And surely his posting of more than 1,000 tweets critical of the press contributed to his showing in this category.

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

The honorees for these awards are a sinister lot that includes. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt, President Xi Jinping of China, and Trump’s BFF, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. That’s auspicious and foreboding company, but it accurately represents the tenor and the harm for which Trump’s presidency is responsible. And it’s a far more honest ceremonial observance than the one Trump is planning for next week (if he even bothers to follow through).

Frightened Fox News Pulls ‘Impeach Trump’ Ad After Trump and Viewers Complain

The cable news network that once promised to be “fair and balanced” has demonstrated again that it was never either. Which may be why they ditched that slogan earlier this year. Friday it was revealed that Fox News breached a contract with billionaire activist Tom Steyer to air a commercial advocating the “Need to Impeach” Donald Trump. Steyer had bought airtime on Fox News and the ad did air at least once on Fox and Friends.

Donald Trump Impeach

However, since then Fox News decided to yank the ad despite the fact that the time had already been paid for. They didn’t give Steyer any reason for breaching their contract. They didn’t even tell him they had done so. When Fox News was asked to explain why they pulled they ads they gave a surprisingly inappropriate response:

Jack Abernethy, Fox News co-president: Due to the strong negative reaction to their ad by our viewers, we could not in good conscience take their money.

If that’s true, it is an extraordinary development. It may be the first time that a television network made a programming decision for advertisements based on viewer response. Maybe the TV audience could speak up and get those disgusting cartoon bears that are obsessed with which toilet paper they wipe their cartoon butts with off the air.

More likely, Fox News axed these ads because the content was contrary to their political biases. The propaganda ministry at the network just could not abide an advertisement that made a strong case for removing Trump from office. Add to that the fact that Trump himself had registered his own complaint via Twitter saying:

Steyer appeared on MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes on Friday when the subject of the ad came up (video below). He told Hayes about Fox’s action and explicitly called out the network for kowtowing to Trump. Steyer also had his attorneys contact Fox News to seek answers as to why they would unilaterally terminate the contract. The letter they wrote said in part that:

“Fox News abruptly pulled the advertisement without explanation (the ‘Cancellation’). We write to protest this baseless and unethical decision. The Cancellation is not only a breach of your agreement with Mr. Steyer – it is also a profound failure of journalistic integrity, a suppression of constitutionally protected speech, and likely a consequence of inexcusable political pressure.”

There are some good reasons for networks to decline to air certain ads. For instance, if the content is provably false, or if it is deliberately harmful or libelous. Political disagreement is not among the legitimate reasons. That would be censorship. Particularly if the President had a role in the decision.

However, the reasons that Fox News would have are easier to predict. They surely would not want to expose their viewers to this sort of information. And they wouldn’t want to piss off their prime benefactor in the White House. But the excuse that they felt guilty about taking Steyer’s money is patently absurd. That sort of argument would lead to rejecting any ads from Democratic candidates. Their predominantly Republican audience wouldn’t like those either. But maybe that’s precisely the ultra-partisan, spin doctoring that Fox News is aiming for.

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

Trump Threatens NBC’s Broadcast License in a Straight-Up Tyrannical Move

Determined to emulate his hero, Vladimir Putin, Donald Trump has issued a threat that brazenly violates the Constitutional guarantee of a free press. In a couple of utterly idiotic tweets, Trump threatened to challenge NBC’s broadcast license.

Donald Trump

Make no mistake, this is what dictators do. They begin by criticizing the media and ridiculing honest journalists. But they eventually resort to outright censorship and government control. Trump has already been lashing out at the press for years. But his repetitive and tedious cries of “fake news” are actually just whining about stories that he doesn’t like. These are his tweets Wednesday morning:


And This Just In: Another tweet:

First of all, Trump offers no support for his contention that NBC’s story is untrue. NBC is standing by the story which had numerous sources affirming the information. This is typical of Trump’s infantile reaction to anything remotely critical. His fragile ego is constantly on the brink of crumbling.

Secondly, Trump’s threat is another example of his Olympic-grade stupidity. If anyone still doubts that Defense Secretary Rex Tillerson called him a moron, you can set those doubts aside. The problem with Trump’s threat to challenge NBC’s license is that the government does not license television networks. There is no license to revoke. The FCC does license individual TV stations and requires them to serve in the public interest. There’s is no way that Trump could have the licenses pulled from every NBC affiliate throughout the country.

Even if Trump were dumb enough to pursue this, he would have to show that each affiliate deliberately broadcast false information that they knew was untrue. Of course, the network most guilty of doing that is Fox News. If that’s the standard being applied then let’s get Fox off the air ASAP. [NOTE: That isn’t possible either because the FCC rules apply only to broadcast television, not to cable].

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

So once again Trump has demonstrated that he is painfully stupid. And in the process he reaffirmed his devotion to authoritarian control of the media and government. He is clearly unfit to be president and is a danger to the country for this and many other reasons. That’s why an anxious nation is impatiently waiting for special counsel Robert Mueller to complete his investigation and for Congress to initiate impeachment proceedings. It can’t happen too soon.