Trump’s Sick Affection for Tyrants Now Includes Iran, He Says ‘I’m Gonna Be Their Best Friend’

America is undergoing an unprecedented assault from within that emanates from the highest reaches of its government. From the very beginning of his presidency, Donald Trump has exhibited a perverse affinity for murderous dictators all over the world. This fetish began with Russia’s Vladimir Putin, extended to North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, and stretched further to include China’s Xi Jinping and others.

Donald Trump, Ayatollah

Now Trump is putting on display his love for yet another deadly and abhorrent regime. This is one that has famously articulated its desire for “death to America.” And it has been a threat to the United States and its allies for decades. Which makes it all the more disturbing that Trump told reporters on Saturday morning that he wants to “Make Iran Great Again.” Yep. those are his exact words. And what’s more, he expressed his personal hope that “I’m gonna be their best friend.”

This outpouring of affection for a hostile regime that is one of the world’s biggest sponsors of terror was triggered by the recent clash between Iranian and U.S. forces in the Strait of Hormuz. After Iran shot down an American surveillance drone, Trump ordered a retaliatory strike that he later rescinded. It was a display of incompetence, chaos, and lies that can only serve to damage America’s interests and reputation.

So naturally Trump took it upon himself to hail his ineptitude it as a stroke of brilliance. And on Saturday, during his peculiar “chopper talk” session with the press, Trump said this:

This is eerily similar to Trump’s comments regarding North Korea. He seems to believe that dangling the prospect of an American-provided economic expansion is what all of these dictators are yearning for. And he also believes that he can engineer that economic boom for any foreign country he chooses. All they have to do is submit to whatever he says with unbending obedience.

Furthermore, Trump insists that if Iran agrees to some unspecified terms regarding their nuclear capabilities, he will see to it that they become a wealthy nation. What’s troubling about this is that he is making no demands with regard to Iran’s support for terrorism or their human rights atrocities both inside and outside of Iran. He’s saying that if Iran agrees to a rollback in their nuclear programs (which they already did under President Obama), Trump will embrace them and enrich them so they can finance more savagery throughout the world.

And the cherry on top of this nightmare pie is that Trump is promising to be Iran’s best friend. You know, the “death to America” folks. Trump even gave Iran a pat on the back for not shooting down another plane on Friday. In this highly suspicious story, Trump thanked Iran saying “I think that was a very wise decision, and I think that’s something that we very much appreciate.” Let that sink in. Trump is sending his “appreciation” to Iran for not shooting down our plane. How thoughtful.

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

Meanwhile, Trump offers nothing but animus and scorn for our friends and allies. He lambastes Mexico, Canada, and Europe at every opportunity. Still, Trump is spreading his friendship pretty thin. He has promised to be best buddies with Russia, North Korea, and China. Never mind the horrific roles they play on the international stage. And set aside how these offers of fellowship are reserved for hateful tyrants. Now we can add Iran to the list of brutal governments that have won Trump’s heart. How does any of this advance American interests?

UNFIT: Trump Okays Strike on Iran Without a Casualty Assessment, and Other Unpresidential Acts

There has been frequent speculation about the shaky temperament of Donald Trump and his mental unfitness for the office of the presidency. This has been observed in his pathological lying, infantile name-calling, nerve-rattling ignorance, affinity for murderous dictators, aversion to American intelligence agencies, and brazen disrespect for the law.

Donald Trump

Nevertheless, Trump continues to provide more evidence of how pitifully incompetent and unprepared he is for the duty he’s assumed. The latest demonstration of that is his response to the charge that Iran shot down an American drone. His first comment on the matter was (naturally) a threatening tweet that said only that “Iran made a very big mistake!” However, he followed that up by suggesting that he literally believes that what Iran did was accidental. Which makes his decision to strike back with military force (for an accident?) somewhat peculiar. But no more peculiar than his reversal of that decision, which he explained in another series of tweets. Let’s examine this tweetstorm:


Obama did not “give” money to Iran. Trump is referring to money that was Iran’s to begin with. It had been frozen in foreign accounts. Obama’s deal released the funds upon completion of the nuclear agreement. Also, Obama did not give Iran a “free path to nuclear weapons.” He secured a decades-long prohibition of further development of their nuclear capabilities which at the time were within a year of completing a functional weapon. Trump’s knee-jerk blaming of Obama is ironic considering that Trump had falsely accused him of plotting to attack Iran nine times before he was president.

Trump complaining about the nuclear agreement with Iran not being ratified by Congress is laughable considering his proclivity for executive orders and appointments of numerous “acting” cabinet officials (ominously including Secretary of Defense, Secretary of Homeland Security, and U.N. Ambassador) who have never been confirmed by the Senate. And Trump’s claim that Iran is now “Bust!” doesn’t jibe with reality. There’s no evidence that their military capabilities have been reduced in any way.


This first tweet contains several notable rhetorical errors. First of all, all drones are unmanned. Secondly, “International Waters” is not a pronoun. Third, it’s “locked and loaded” not “cocked.” Fourth, it’s “sites,” not “sights.”

More importantly, if it’s true that Trump approved a military strike, but only asked for a casualty assessment ten minutes before it began, he is even more disengaged and incompetent as Commander-in-Chief than we thought. However, casualty assessments are routinely given during mission briefings, and reports say this one was no exception. So Trump is likely lying about when he learned of the potential fatalities. Even Chris Wallace of Fox News was curious why Trump didn’t ask that question sooner, prompting him to wonder if Trump “has the stomach to launch this kind of attack.”

Trump often says that he has “rebuilt” the military which he describes disparagingly as having been “depleted.” In doing so, he is insulting every American officer and soldier who served prior to his election. Never mind the fact that his demeaning assertion is wholly unfounded.

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

Taken in total, these tweets are nothing more than Trump seeking to excuse his inadequacies, assign blame to others, and exalt himself as a national savior. They do nothing to advance a solution to rising tensions in the Middle East (which he has exacerbated), or to protect America’s interests. Like just about everything else he does, it was focused solely on glorifying himself and canonizing the image that he wants others to have of him. Unfortunately for Trump, that will only work on the glassy-eyed Deplorables that make up his cult following.

Wag the Dog: Trump’s Threats to Iran Mirror His False Accusations Against Obama

If there’s one thing we know about Donald Trump, it’s that he will say anything to exalt himself and slander his opponents. It doesn’t matter whether there is any speck of truth to his ranting. And during times of crisis, this character flaw presents a very real risk to the welfare of the nation. The danger that Trump is putting us in has never been better demonstrated than by his saber-rattling over Iran.

Donald Trump, Barack Obama

The reports about the shooting down of a U.S. drone are still lacking substantive evidence of whether or not it had violated Iranian airspace. And it would foolish to take Trump’s word for anything given his propensity for lying. What’s more, these rising tensions are directly attributable to Trump’s own policies. He thought that by pulling out of the six-nation agreement to denuclearize Iran that Iran would would back down and submit to further, unspecified restrictions. Instead, Iran has become more aggressive and confrontational.

So Trump’s plan backfired badly. And now we are on the brink of a conflict that nobody wanted. Or maybe not. Trump himself has speculated about the benefits of a war with Iran. He has openly expressed his opinion that it would be helpful in a reelection campaign. That would be especially true for a candidate with approval numbers as dismal as Trump’s But he wasn’t talking about himself:

Could Trump have possibly been more wrong, more often? That’s nine times between November 2011 and November 2013 that Trump accused President Obama of plotting to incite a war with Iran. And, of course, none of it was true. However, his belief that such a plan would be beneficial to a candidate in a tough reelection campaign says a lot about what he may be thinking now that he finds himself in that position today. Is he trying to improve his own floundering prospects in the manner that he believed would have been successful for Obama? Will Republicans take his advice to “be careful” now that the political tables have turned?

If so, he’s doing it very badly. After tweeting what appeared to be a direct threat that “Iran made a very big mistake!,” Trump backpedalled saying “I find it hard it believe it was intentional.” In other words, he’s now floating the notion that it was literally a mistake. It’s a weakening that can only serve to embolden Iran.

Trump is pursuing this ill-advised strategy a time when his administration is bereft of experienced, qualified advisors. He currently has no Secretary of Defense, no U.N. Ambassador, no Secretary of Homeland Security, and a war mongering National Security Advisor (John Bolton) with whom he has had painfully public disputes, including on the subject of Iran. This does not bode well for America. And it’s another reason why Trump should have been impeached long ago. It’s not too late – hopefully.

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

Wagging the Dog? Trump and Fox News are Prepping America for a Contrived War with Iran

A quick glance at Donald Trump’s Twitter feed Friday morning reveals that the current level of his psychotic anxiety is exceeding any that he has suffered since his inauguration. He posted twenty-five tweets or retweets in a span of two hours. And nine of those were related to just one subject: the disastrous tariffs that he imposed on China.

Donald Trump Revolt

Trump is still deliberately lying about how tariffs work. He insists that they produce revenue that goes straight from China into the U.S. treasury. The truth – which he has been told repeatedly – is that tariffs are charged to the importer (the U.S. company) and then passed on to American citizens. But he is frantically trying to make excuses for the harm he’s doing to American businesses and consumers, as well as to the stock market that lost more than 500 points since his renewed tariff threats.

The Trump administration appears to be manufacturing international controversy at a time when his approval ratings are sinking and his legal jeopardy is exploding. These negative trends were triggered by the release of the redacted version of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia and his obstruction of justice. Subsequent to that release, Democrats in Congress have escalated their investigations into Trump’s criminality. Their issuance of lawful subpoenas has resulted in a presidential tantrum wherein he has declared that he will refuse to cooperate in defiance of the law. That is setting up what many are calling a constitutional crisis.

However, Trump is also engaging in a foreign policy adventure that is ultimately far more troubling and dangerous. On Friday his Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, made some comments that are unambiguously hostile toward Iran. Fox News reported these comments (video below) complete with the overtones of doom that they imply:

“Secretary of State Pompeo says that any attack on U.S, interests by Iran, or U.S. citizens, will be met with a swift and decisive US response. The Secretary says in a statement that ‘We do not seek war. But Iran’s 40 years of killing American soldiers, attacking American facilities and taking American hostages is a constant reminder that we must defend ourselves.'” […]

“Citing an unspecified threat, the administration set up a deployment of the USS Abraham Lincoln carrier strike group for the Persian Gulf. Four B-52 bombers have also landed in the region.”

It hardly seems necessary to say that “any attack on U.S, interests” would not be tolerated. That goes for Canada as much as it does for Iran. So why did Pompeo feel it was necessary to make such a pointless and obvious comment at this time?

The Fox News reporter spoke of “an unspecified threat” as provoking this action. But any prelude to war should be predicated on something more substantial than “an unspecified threat.” At least George Bush’s Secretary of State, Colin Powell, pretended to have a vial of Iraqi anthrax as evidence to declare a phony war. What’s more, Congress has to pass an Authorization for Use of Military Force before the President can march American soldiers off to war.

What makes these circumstance even more disturbing today than they were in 2003 is that Trump has demonstrated that he doesn’t give a fig about the Constitution or any other democratic principle. He denigrates the First Amendment by constantly referring to the media in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people.” He’s trying to burn down the wall between church and state, while erecting a wall on the southern border to deny asylum seekers refuge. He orchestrated the horrendous policy of separating families and imprisoning children in cages. He sought to ban immigrants based on their religion. And his claims of executive privilege to prevent investigators from getting his tax returns or talking to his associates are brazenly illegal.

Trump’s mental health has long been the subject of speculation as fitting the description of a malignant narcissist. Everything is about him and his perceived awesomeness. No lie is too over the top. And his frothing paranoia stirs incessant fears of “witch hunts” and conspiracies and harassment. And all of that leads to a twisted temperament that is likely to become unhinged as the law catches up with him. That’s when psychologists say that a patient like Trump can be most dangerous.

Consequently, it isn’t much of a stretch to imagine that Trump might contrive crises if he believes it will help him escape accountability for his crimes. They might involve trade disputes with China. Or caravans of murderers, rapists, and drug dealers, invading America from the south. Or nuclear standoffs with North Korea. Or even a fabricated war with Iran that arises out of nowhere, for no reason, but demands an immediate and deadly response.

This is a time that Americans need to be vigilant and steadfast to deny Trump any possibility of entangling the country in yet another pointless war that only serves the interests of a self-serving, authoritarian regime. Trump has laid to rest the old comforting platitude that “it can’t happen here.” It can. But only if the American people allow it.

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

Fox News Helps GOP Congresswoman Spread Debunked Lies that Obama Paid Iran $1.5 Billion

Just in case you were looking for another example of Fox News casting off all pretense of being an honest news enterprise, they provided an excellent one Thursday morning. Donald Trump’s favorite TV show, Fox and Friends, invited Republican congresswoman Liz Cheney to discuss matters related to the Trump administration’s diplomatic agenda for Iran since Trump broke the agreement the United States made previously. And yes, that’s Dick Cheney’s daughter.

Fox News Friends

The segment began with Ainsley Earhardt reminding viewers that Donald Trump recently posted a deranged, all caps tweet that warned Iran to “NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE.” It cannot be overstated that this was the President threatening the nuclear annihilation of men, women, and children, of a foreign adversary over mere words.

Much of the conversation centered on Cheney’s impressions of Trump’s National Security Advisor, John Bolton, and his efforts to prevent Iran from advancing their nuclear ambitions. Of course, President Obama had already put an end to that prior to Trump blowing it up in his obsessive fetish to undo all things Obama. But Cheney was then asked specifically how the current administration’s approach to Iran differed from their predecessor. Which seems like a planted question that really had no purpose other than to bash Obama’s achievements. Cheney took full advantage of that saying:

“Oh it’s hugely different. If you look at the fact that Barack Obama paid $1.5 billion – U.S. taxpayer money – paid the Iranians to get them to enter into the nuclear agreement.”

The only problem with that response is that is utterly and provably false. PolitiFact, and every other fact-checker, has documented that the monies disbursed to Iran when the deal with the Obama administration (and by the way, six other nations) was executed, was Iran’s money to begin with. The U.S. was merely releasing funds that it had sequestered as part of the sanctions that were imposed on Iran in order to bring them to the negotiating table.

After Cheney made her wholly dishonest claim about these funds, Earhardt failed to challenge her or to let Fox’s viewers know that she was lying. So that false information was disseminated once again to Fox’s already ignorant and ill-informed viewers. And as if that weren’t enough, Fox News later posted a video clip of the segment on Twitter that featured Cheney’s remarks, but still didn’t point out that they were false. This is typical of Fox’s practice of mangling the news so that it misrepresents reality and feeds disinformation to an audience that can’t distinguish truth from fiction anyway.

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

Fox News Buries Bombshell on Trump’s Fixer Michael Cohen – Posts Fake Obama/Iran Story Instead

On Monday morning there was one big story that was dominating the news. Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s attorney – and self-described fixer – was interviewed by George Stephanopoulos for ABC News. In the interview Cohen pretty clearly indicated that he was no longer willing to “take a bullet” for Trump. He told Stephanopoulos that “My wife, my daughter and my son have my first loyalty and always will.”

Fox News, Michael Cohen, Obama

This development is properly being handled like the bombshell that it is by most of the media. Cohen’s additional announcement that he will no longer participate in a joint defense agreement with Trump is generally regarded as a prelude to flipping on the President and cooperating with prosecutors. Even Judge Andrew Napolitano of Fox News said Trump should have some “sleepless nights” over this.

However, if you were to visit the Fox News website Monday morning you would have had a hard time finding anything related to this blockbuster story. A long scroll down the front page would have eventually brought you to a single line on the subject that linked to a two minute video clip. Later in the day that was replaced by the Napolitano quote. And on the air, Fox News covered the story on Outnumbered in a segment that cast Cohen as “not credible” because he was “going against” the President. Apparently on Fox News that’s all you need to know to be considered not credible.

Meanwhile, the Fox News website chose to put a story at the top of their page that was somewhat less timely. The headline: “Path to Citizenship? Powerful cleric claims Obama naturalized thousands of Iranian VIPs during nuke talks.” Fox had to reach back three years to pull this story out of the woodwork. And it was still just a jumble of fiercely spinning jabs at President Obama. None of them hit their mark because they were so far fetched and thinly argued. The article said that:

“The Obama administration granted citizenship to 2,500 Iranians, including family members of government officials, while negotiating the Iran nuclear deal, a senior cleric and member of parliament has claimed.

“Hojjat al-Islam Mojtaba Zolnour, who is chairman of Iran’s parliamentary nuclear committee and a member of its national security and foreign affairs committee, made the allegations during an interview with the country’s Etemad newspaper, cited by the country’s Fars News agency.

“He claimed it was done as a favor to senior Iranian officials linked to President Hassan Rouhani, and he alleged the move sparked a competition among Iranian officials over whose children would benefit from the scheme.”

First of all, everything being reported here is coming from Iran’s state news operation and a hardliner within the Iranian government. For some reason Fox News is granting them the journalistic legitimacy that they would never give to the New York Times, or CNN. But more to the point, the article actually outlines a story wherein Obama allowed Iranian dissidents to emigrate to the United States where they are reportedly working against the national interests of the theocratic, totalitarians in Iran. But that isn’t revealed until much further down in the article:

“[Zolnour] estimated that between 30 and 60 were studying in the U.S. while the rest of them were working in the country ‘against our national interests.'”

So Fox News is deliberately trying to cast Obama in a negative light as having done favors for the offspring of Iranian dictators. But the truth is that he was securing the freedom of Iranian dissidents who oppose the current regime. And this fake news story was elevated to the top of the page, even while the much more consequential (and truthful) story about Michael Cohen was virtually eliminated. It’s kind of ironic that Fox is offering this lesson in how State TV works in an article about Iran’s state TV. Fox News can teach Iran so much about propaganda.

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

UPDATE: By Monday afternoon Fox News had replaced their Obama/Iran feature story with one about California splitting into three states. That may be even less newsworthy (and extremely unlikely to happen) than the Iran story. And still just one small link to Cohen, this one linking to a video clip with Shepard Smith.

Trump’s Manic Obsession to Undo Obama’s Legacy is Helpfully Exposed By Fox News

The return of three Americans held as prisoners in North Korea can be celebrated by the whole country, regardless of political affiliation. We can all feel a bit of the gratitude that they and their families are feeling today. But we must not pretend that this bit of micro-diplomacy guarantees the success of the broader mission for which Donald Trump has recklessly built up expectations with comments like his tweet on Thursday flaunting an ambitious goal to “denuclearize that entire peninsula.”

Obama Fox News

We must also not forget that Trump’s strutting bravado with regard to North Korea is a symptom of the same mental defect that motivated him to violate the terms of our pact with Iran, and five other nations, to prohibit them from developing nuclear weapons. So even if he strikes a deal with North Korea (which is by no means certain), it’s one step forward, two steps back.

There is, however, an obvious string of commonality that weaves through everything Trump does. In almost every public statement he’s made about Iran, he’s inserted a jab at President Obama over the multinational agreement that Trump has called “one of the worst deals ever negotiated in American diplomatic history.” Likewise, he regularly bashes Obama for not having terminated North Korea’s nuclear weapons program during his term. Note that there are good reasons for not rewarding the Kim regimes that Obama and every other American president have observed.

Trump’s fetish with all things Obama extends to nearly every initiative he’s pursued as president. Even Fox News has noticed this all-consuming psychosis. They recently did a story calling the scuttling of the Iran deal the “latest Trump move to dismantle key Obama policies.” The story noted that:

“Donald Trump’s announcement Tuesday that the United States would withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement marks just the latest development in the president’s ongoing effort to undo predecessor Barack Obama’s legacy — including trying to dismantle Obamacare while making drastic changes to U.S. immigration and military policies. […] Since taking office in January 2017, Trump has repealed or rescinded dozens of regulations, executive orders and international agreements implemented by the Obama administration over the eight years of his presidency. That effort began three days after Trump was inaugurated.”

Indeed. Trump’s sole motivation appears to be to unravel everything that Obama successfully implemented. Although it’s a bit surreal to see Fox News articulate it so explicitly. Trump’s gnawing jealousy has him on a single-minded path of destruction. It’s why he installed cabinet heads whose sole objectives are to weaken, and eventually eliminate, the departments they run. It’s a fact that is so transparent that even Fox News is comfortable reporting it. They posted a tweet listing the deliberate damage that Trump is doing to the Obama legacy:

Ironically, the items in that list are all examples of harm that Trump is doing, not just to Obama’s legacy, but to America. Polls show that most voters are in favor of the Democratic/liberal position on every single one of the those issues. Trump is working furiously against the interests of the people. So Fox News is posting what amounts to a campaign ad for voting Democratic in 2018. And while Fox is also continuing their regular broadcasts of repulsive opinions by heinous pundits, we might just pause for a moment to thank them for this inadvertent gift. But don’t expect to get any more between now and November.

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

Trump Tries To Weasel Out Of Iranian Video Claims With Incoherent Tweet

Yesterday Fox News aired a report that alleged, without evidence, that the Obama administration had paid a ransom to secure the release of Americans imprisoned in Iran. Accompanying the report was a video that Fox implied was of the transfer of American cash to the Iranians. However, it quickly became clear that the video in fact showed a group of prisoners being released in Switzerland.

Fox News

That didn’t stop Donald Trump from repeatedly characterizing the video he saw as showing cash being unloaded at a Iranian airport. His remarks were unambiguous as he told supporters that “I’ll never forget the scene this morning. […] the tape is of the people taking the money off the plane. Right?”

Wrong. There is no such video and even Trump’s campaign spokesperson admitted that. Today Trump himself took a step toward correcting the record with a tweet:

Some people might interpret that as an admission on Trump’s part that he was wrong about having seen the video he described yesterday. And for Donald Trump that’s about as close to an admission of fault as you’re ever going to get. But when you dissect his tweet it’s clear that he’s trying to backtrack in a particularly awkward fashion.

Notice that Trump is referring to the plane he saw on television as being “the hostage plane.” He’s leaving wide open the possibility that he still saw “the plane carrying $400 million,” but that he didn’t see it on TV. In short, he doesn’t explicitly deny having seen the plane as he claimed. In addition, the people released were not hostages, a term that presumes captivity pending satisfaction of a list of demands. Since that was not the case, Trump is purposefully misleading his readers.

More to the point, Trump’s backpedaling tweet in no way explains the core remarks he made previously, even after being told he was wrong. There is nothing in the tweet that addresses his ludicrous insistence that he saw a video that was made by Iran. Neither does the tweet address his assertion that the Iranians provided the video to embarrass the United States. Read his original comments from yesterday and try to find anything in his tweet that directly refutes the bulk of it:

“I’ll never forget the scene this morning. Remember this: Iran – I don’t think you heard this anywhere but here – Iran provided all of that footage, the tape of taking that money off the airplane. Right? $400 million in cash. How does the President do that? How do you do that? We’re gonna send $400 million in cash, this is in cash, in currency.”

“Now, here’s the amazing thing: Over there, where that plane landed, top secret, you don’t have a lot of paparazzi. You know, the paparazzi doesn’t do so well over there, right? And they have a perfect tape, done by obviously a government camera, and the tape is of the people taking the money off the plane. Right? That means that in order to embarrass us further, Iran sent us the tapes. Right? It’s a military tape, it’s a tape that was a perfect angle, nice and steady, nobody getting nervous because they’re gonna be shot because they’re shooting a picture of money pouring off a plane.”

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

This tweet was a desperate attempt by Trump to wriggle out of a boneheaded commentary that had no basis in reality. He was humiliated by his campaign staff, his GOP colleagues, and the press. So he tried clumsily to extricate himself from his own idiocy. And most pathetic of all, he even failed at that.

Fox News Airs Phony Footage Of Iran Funds Flight – And Donald Trump Falls For It

The Wall Street Journal recently published a story alleging to have uncovered a secret $400 million payment from the United States to Iran. Never mind that the payment was disclosed by the administration last January and was a settlement of a long standing financial dispute. The WSJ ignited a firestorm of frenzied conservatives falsely asserting that the money was a ransom paid to secure the release of Americans imprisoned in Iran.

Fox News

Among the right-wing media spinners that rushed to wield this story as a cudgel against President Obama and Hillary Clinton was, of course, Fox News. They aired a report that parroted the WSJ (also owned by Rupert Murdoch) along with video that Fox implied was of the transfer of American cash to the Iranians. There’s just one problem. The video was actually of a group of prisoners being released in Switzerland.

Not one to let a fake Fox News story go to waste, Donald Trump took to the stage in Daytona, Florida, to address the matter (video below). But he veered even further into a world of delusion as he unfolded a fable of espionage to which he alone was privy:

“I’ll never forget the scene this morning. Remember this: Iran – I don’t think you heard this anywhere but here – Iran provided all of that footage, the tape of taking that money off the airplane. Right? $400 million in cash. How does the President do that? How do you do that? We’re gonna send $400 million in cash, this is in cash, in currency.”

No, Donald, That’s not right. Iran didn’t take any of that footage, which was shot in Switzerland. And there was no cash in it at all. In fact, the claim that the U.S. loaded shipping palettes with cash was utterly false. Due to economic sanctions, the U.S. has no banking relationship with Iran. Therefore, the money was transferred to Swiss banks where it was converted by the them to currencies that they sent to Iran. Trump continued:

“Now, here’s the amazing thing: Over there, where that plane landed, top secret, you don’t have a lot of paparazzi. You know, the paparazzi doesn’t do so well over there, right? And they have a perfect tape, done by obviously a government camera, and the tape is of the people taking the money off the plane. Right? That means that in order to embarrass us further, Iran sent us the tapes. Right? It’s a military tape, it’s a tape that was a perfect angle, nice and steady, nobody getting nervous because they’re gonna be shot because they’re shooting a picture of money pouring off a plane.”

Once again, that is entirely wrong. Iran didn’t send us the tape, and it’s not from their military. So there was no attempt on their part to embarrass the U.S. There was no top secret landing since the entire affair was publicly disclosed by the government. This whole story is as fictional as Trump’s claim to have seen thousands of Muslims in New Jersey celebrating the fall of the World Trade Center towers. That never happened either.

So Trump invented a tale of intrigue wherein he observed a non-existent top secret video of Iranians receiving piles of cash from a clandestine American flight. And just to be clear, his spokesperson, Hope Hicks, was asked by the Washington Post if the video to which he was referring was the one that aired on Fox News. She responded “Yes,” it was “merely the B-roll footage included in every broadcast.” And since we know that that video was not shot in Iran, we also know that Trump’s entire account is pure fiction. Which makes it consistent with pretty much everything else that Trump says (see the Trump Bullshitopedia). and, for that matter, most of what appears on Fox News.

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

UPDATE: Trump has now admitted that he never saw the video he claimed at least twice to have seen. He gave no explanation for why he falsely claimed to have seen a video that doesn’t exist.

The Most Hilariously Delusional Response To The Iran Nuclear Arms Negotiations

In the early hours of Tuesday, July 14, 2015, an announcement was made that Iran had agreed to a deal with the United States (and England, France, Germany, Russia, and China) restricting their ability to advance any weapons related nuclear programs. The deal required significant concessions from Iran with regard to research, production, storage, etc., of fissile materials, and set stiff obligations for verification and inspection. It further held that existing sanctions would remain in place until it is certified that Iran is complying with the conditions of the agreement.

This announcement predictably triggered a tempest of antipathy from the usual quarters of the Obama Hate Squad (aka the Republican Party). They immediately jerked their auto-tuned knees to complain that President Obama had just surrendered America to its enemies and offered to build Iran as many nuclear warheads as they want and help to aim them at Israel. This went on all day at Fox News with each anchor and pundit taking turns to find the most scurrilous attack on what they regard as a traitorous president.

Among the critics of the new deal was Senate Republican Whip John Cornyn of Texas. He stood shoulder to shoulder with his GOP leadership colleagues (Senators McConnell, Barrasso, and Corker) to denounce Obama’s appeasement of Iran, the next perpetrators of a holocaust. Cornyn said that the deal allows Iran “a clear path to develop nuclear weapons.” (Which it does not).

John Cornyn

But apparently the risk of global conflagration grew considerably since a previous statement Cornyn made about the arms deal. Back in 2013 he took note of Obama’s nascent efforts at bringing Iran to the table and could not contain himself. He feverishly tweeted…

“Amazing what WH will do to distract attention from O’Care.”

So Cornyn originally believed that Obama’s initiative to constrain Iran’s nuclear ambitions was merely an attempt to keep everyone from paying attention to the fact that he had made health insurance available to more Americans than ever before. How insidious. This is truly a crafty president who, for some reason, didn’t want anyone to know that he was expanding access to healthcare, so he contrived a historic deal to remove Iran’s potential for nuclear warfare as a diversion.

With today’s announcement of a successful agreement, we learn that Obama’s attempted diversion has actually born fruit. The five other negotiating partners, as well as the United Nations, all approved of the deal and celebrated it as an unprecedented achievement. And through it all the Affordable Care Act continued to roll out and is now responsible for producing the highest rate of coverage ever for the American people.

News Corpse Presents: The ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

I suppose you could therefore call the Iranian arms deal distraction an unqualified success. It enabled ObamaCare to become ingrained in American society while no one was looking, and it also put the screws to Iran’s devious weapons plans. How ever did Cornyn figure all of that out two years ago? He must be some kind of genius, or prophet.