Fox News Dismisses Sean Hannity’s Unethical Appearance at Trump Rally as ‘a Distraction’

This is a quick update to the story about Sean Hannity making an appearance with Donald Trump at Monday night’s cult rally in Missouri. Fox News finally issued a statement on Hannity’s violation of Fox’s policy. But it was a weak attempt to sweep the whole matter under the rug and fails to hold Hannity (or Jeanine Pirro, who also stumped with Trump) accountable.

Donald Trump Sean Hannity

The entire statement from Fox said said that:

“FOX News does not condone any talent participating in campaign events. We have an extraordinary team of journalists helming our coverage tonight and we are extremely proud of their work. This was an unfortunate distraction and has been addressed.”

So this was merely “an unfortunate distraction” rather than an egregious breach of journalistic principles? And it merited only this powder-puff, wrist slapping that was more complimentary and prideful than punitive. What’s more, Hannity posted a brazenly dishonest tweet that incredulously claimed that his stage show was unplanned:

Yeah right. He was literally featured in the White House press release saying that he would be a “special guest.” at the rally. Is he trying to tell us that he was the only person who didn’t know that Trump would call on him (and Pirro) to speak? Maybe his dimwitted audience on Fox News will fall for that. But the rest of us are laughing our butts off.

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

UPDATE: A reporter from CNN asked some of Hannity’s colleagues about this and they are “outraged” that he stumped for Trump and that the company won’t do anything about it.

Fox News ‘Judge’ Wonders If Trump Aides and Republicans Have Infiltrated the Refugee Caravan

As the midterm election gets closer, the deranged conspiracy theories of Fox News Trump-fluffers get more perverse and mired in absurdity. Donald Trump is the point man in this mission with his increasingly offensive, racist, and dishonest ravings from the podium at his cult rallies. But his minions at State TV (aka Fox News) are dutifully backing him up (when they aren’t occasionally repudiating him) with ludicrous fictions aimed at their willfully ignorant audience.

Jeanine Pirro Fox News

On Friday’s episode of Fox and Friends, the “Curvy Couch” potatoes hosted one of their own, “Judge” Jeanine Pirro, the Executive Harpy of Fox’s Libtard Attack Squad. Pirro came prepared with her unique brand of partisan tripe. The panel was discussing the “caravan” of migrants fleeing the violence and poverty in their home countries. However, on Fox News these refugees were portrayed as invaders intent on storming the U.S. borders to rape and pillage innocent Americans. It’s the same noxious bigotry that Trump has been prattling about for weeks as he attempts to exploit the fear and prejudices of his glassy-eyed disciples. But Pirro took it a step further (video below):

“I wanna know who’s in that caravan? Are there pedophiles? Are there career criminals? Are there people who think they can beat their wives without consequence? We don’t know, and that’s the whole issue.”

Indeed. That is the whole issue. We definitely need to know if there are menacing cretins infiltrating the caravaners that mean to harm our families and neighbors. Are there pedophiles like Roy Moore and Strom Thurmond? Are there wife abusers like former Trump staffer Rob Porter? Are there criminals like Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Roger Stone, Tom Price, and Donald Trump himself? In short, is the entire caravan made up of members of Trump’s Republican Nationalist Party? Because we surely don’t want to allow any of those thugs into the country. They would just being more crime, disease, and probably some Russian subversives to undermine our democracy.

These are good questions that Pirro is raising, and we need to get the answers. But she wasn’t through with her prescient observations. She had some constructive opinions about how to protect us from these foreign threats. And her solutions were tightly intertwined with her infatuation for Trump:

“So the President, by taking a hard line saying look, you can only now seek asylum at ports of entry, and then dealing with the birthright citizenship issue, which has been like an anchor on our necks, is recognizing that this is an issue that we need to address.”

That’s an interesting set of proposals. Except for the fact that the invading refugees have always intended to present themselves to border officials at legal ports of entry to request asylum. And Trump’s assault on birthright citizenship is actually an assault on the U.S. Constitution that he swore to preserve and protect. But other than that, it’s super-keen. Hopefully Fox News will follow up on these questions and get to the bottom of the controversy over the GOP invaders threatening to destroy America. And if they don’t, the people need to take action by voting in massive numbers on November 6.

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

HUH? White House Will ‘Look Into’ Why State TV (Fox News) Stopped Airing Trump’s Rallies Live

Trump delivered another tedious and repetitive stump speech at one of his, now frequent, cult rallies Wednesday in Erie, Pennsylvania. It was a showcase for all of his “greatest hits” featuring “Build the Wall,” “Lock Her Up,” “Witch Hunt,” and many more. However, there was difference with this revival meeting that sets it apart from most of those in the past.

Fox News, Donald Trump

Politico reports that the Trump Broadcasting Network’s State TV (aka Fox News), declined to air the event live and uninterrupted as they usually do. Fox News has been a devoted servant of this administration when it comes to disseminating propaganda via their airwaves. They even promote on air with chyrons that read “Trump Rally Live & Only on Fox News, Other Networks Ignore Presidential Rally.” But it’s possible that Trump’s floundering popularity and financial concerns may be influencing their programming going forward. Politico notes that:

“As he’s ramped up his rally schedule ahead of the midterms, viewership numbers for the raucous prime-time events have been roughly similar to — sometimes dipping below — Fox News’ regular programming, and the network has recently stopped airing most evening events in full.”

That’s right. Trump is losing fans on the network that has been his official fan club for more than two years. This cannot be good news for the President, especially since he is increasing the number of these affairs specifically to boost the campaign prospects of Republican candidates in the cities where he is performing.

Consequently, Trump is compensating for this reduced coverage by calling into Fox News programs by phone. In the past three days he’s done that three times, ringing up his buddies Jeanine Pirro, Shannon Bream, and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends. But this is not likely to satisfy the White House. They have grown accustomed to the fawning attention they get from Fox News and expect it to continue. And they aren’t sitting around waiting for Fox to correct the situation. According to Politico:

“One senior White House official was unsure why the network would decide to cut away from presidential rallies, saying officials planned ‘to look into that’ and wouldn’t be surprised if White House communications director Bill Shine, a former Fox News executive, was in touch with former colleagues about the trend.”

Let that sink in. The White House believes that they have some sort of right to free airtime on Fox News, and if they aren’t getting it they will take action to set the network straight. Notice that they aren’t talking about looking into CNN or MSNBC. They are focusing on their wholly owned platform for media exposure and dispatching Bill Shine to address this outrageous policy shift. Shine is the former president of Fox News and Trump’s current deputy chief of staff for communications. And if you think that this isn’t explicitly about having an impact on the upcoming midterm election, just take it from the mouth of a GOP campaign operative who worries about the loss of Trump’s TV time because:

“‘It exposes us to a national audience that we normally don’t get to,’ a Senate Republican campaign staffer said of the coverage of Trump rallies. ‘We tend to see lots of new sign-ups and small-dollar donations. There’s obviously folks streaming [rallies] online, but being able to be onstage with the president in front of a prime-time audience is huge for a campaign trying to reach conservatives across the country who will open up their wallets.'”

Among the other observations made by Politico are that Trump’s rallies are drawing fewer viewers. “His events at times popped for more than 4 million viewers on Fox News,” a source said. Which is “a number he hasn’t come close to in 2018.” What’s more, “network officials’ fear was that too much repetition would lead to lower ratings,” and that Fox News could lose millions of dollars in ad revenue because they “can’t take commercial breaks while Trump is speaking.”

Perhaps the decision to cut back on live rally airings led to Trump making a blatant promotional pitch for Fox in order to get more airtime via flattery. He gave a shout out on Wednesday to Foxies who he praised for maligning Democrats as “the Dimms,” saying:

“The great Lou Dobbs, he says that, right? Sean Hannity says that. ‘The Dimms.’ Judge Jeanine says that, doesn’t she? Laura [Ingraham]. Laura. How good has Laura been, right? Do we like Tucker? I like Tucker.”

Actually, only Lou Dobbs says that, but getting the facts straight has never been of much concern to Trump. All he wants is to have his face in front of the Deplorables who are glued to Fox News all day and night. He wants to make sure his perverse and incoherent message is being injected into the already acutely ill-informed brains of Fox’s loyal audience. And if Fox News thinks they can get away with reducing his airtime, they better be prepared for more of this:

Yeah, that’ll happen. More likely Fox will cave in to Trump’s tantrum and resume their live broadcasts. They can make up the lost revenue with the tax cuts Trump will promise them. And their hosts who get preempted by the rallies will all get “exclusive” interviews. That’s how State TV works. Trump is learning well from his friends in Russia and North Korea.

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

Fox News ‘Judge’ Spews Lies About Kavanaugh Case that Were Debunked – By Fox News

The Republican controlled Senate Judiciary Committee is continuing on its bullheaded mission to rush through the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court. Their callous approach to the charges of Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual assault on Dr. Christine Blasey Ford could not even be slowed down by the resignation of the committee’s spokesperson due to charges of sexual harassment. Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.

Jeanine Pirro Fox News

However, Fox News can make up phony allegations against Dr. Ford to malign her character and introduce demonstrably false speculation as to her motives for coming forward. Throughout this melodrama, Fox News has participated in the deliberate vilification of a woman who has already endured untold suffering. She has been accused of lying, having a faulty memory, and even misidentifying her attacker. She has also been accused of having political motives that none of her critics can actually verify.

Among the worst of the Fox News attack squad is “judge” Jeanine Pirro. She has been relentless in her criticism of Dr. Ford, and her defense of Judge Kavanaugh. But she went to a new extreme on her program Saturday night. In her “Opening Statement” segment, Pirro launched a typically (for her) rancid, spittle inflected tirade against Dr. Ford that began with the baseless charge that she was “highly political.” And then she dived into what she said was an “even more compelling” incident (video below):

“Do you remember when the President nominated Brett Kavanaugh, we heard that Kavanaugh’s mother was a judge. Ford’s parents – follow me – Ford’s parents had a foreclosure claim against them and their home in 1996, in Maryland. Ford’s parents lost their home. The judge ruled against them. The judge was a woman. The judge was Brett Kavanaugh’s mother.”

There is no other way to put this than that Pirro is brazenly lying. The only part of those remarks that is true is that Kavanaugh’s mother was a judge. Follow me: Ford’s parents did not lose their home. And Kavanaugh’s mother did not rule against them. In fact, the foreclosure was dismissed by Kavanaugh’s mother after Ford’s parents and the bank agreed on a settlement. So the whole conspiracy theory that Dr. Ford was acting out as revenge is ridiculous since the ruling by Kavanaugh’s mother was favorable to the Fords. And these facts were reported by none other than Fox News:

“The parents of the woman who is accusing Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct have a connection to the Supreme Court nominee through his mother, a Maryland state judge, online court records show. Martha Kavanaugh granted a motion dismissing a 1996 foreclosure action against Ralph and Paula Blasey, according to the records.”

The story by Fox News was published five days ago, so Pirro has no excuse for disseminating her lies last night. Pirro likely got her bogus accounts from the phalanx of rightist websites that were pushing this notion despite all the evidence to the contrary. They included well known purveyors of fake news like America First, Pacific Pundit, and the renowned “Stupidest Man on the Internet,” the Gateway Pundit (and even he corrected his story). This was all previously debunked by PolitiFact.

For Fox News to permit this sort of flagrantly dishonest commentary on their network is further proof of how careless they are about factual reporting, and/or how biased they are and prepared to spread false information if it advances their ultra-conservative agenda. They must be especially desperate considering how poorly Kavanaugh is regarded by the American people, who in the latest Fox News poll are opposed to his confirmation by fifty percent to forty percent in favor. That wouldn’t be a sufficient reason to allow lies like these to be broadcast by any other news network. But for Fox it’s just business as usual.

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

Sean Hannity Forces a Fox News Lockdown on Opinions About the Rosenstein/Trump Affair

On Friday the New York Times published a bizarre story about Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. The article alleged that Rosenstein had floated a suggestion to secretly record Donald Trump to gather evidence of his mental infirmity. There was reportedly further discussion of invoking the 25th Amendment to declare the President incompetent and remove him from office. That hardly seems like an allegation that needs any additional proof.

Fox News Sean Hannity

As noted yesterday, the article was peculiar because…

“…the only other beneficiary of it would be the White House. It gives Trump an excuse to fire Rosenstein and appoint someone in his place who would put the brakes on the investigation of special counsel, Robert Mueller. But it would be somewhat hypocritical for Trump to do that on the basis of a story from a news source that he considers fake and failing. Consequently, he might need some support from his cheering section (and shadow cabinet) at State TV, also known as Fox News.”

It looked like Trump was getting the support he would need to fire Rosenstein from a bevy of Fox News hacks. They included Laura Ingraham, Gregg Jarrett, and Jeanine Pirro. But all was not as tightly synchronized as one would expect of the Fox propaganda machine. Later that evening when Sean Hannity’s program came on, he had a decidedly different take on the matter. He looked squarely into the camera and delivered a personal message to Trump saying “Under zero circumstances should the president fire anybody. The president needs to know it is all a setup.” Hannity asserted that the whole thing might be an insidious attempt by the “deep state” to bait Trump into firing Rosenstein and then initiating impeachment proceedings against him for doing so.

Despite the absurdly Machiavellian flavor of that conspiracy theory, it appears to have taken hold and altered the Fox News playbook for this issue. Ingraham deleted her tweet without any explanation. And Pirro posted a subsequent tweet adopting Hannity’s framing. She even went a little further to speculate that Rosenstein was the Times’ anonymous source. Tucker Carlson was already on board having opined that it was former Deputy Director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe, who leaked the memos to the Times since he “has every incentive to want to see the president impeached.”

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

So now we have achieved the full hive-mind harmony that is required of a socio-political cult. This unanimity of viewpoint makes it possible for the borg Family to advance their robo-mission unencumbered by independent thought. And surprisingly, the leader of the Family has remained silent. Trump has not addressed the Times’ article directly since it’s publication. He did make a sideways reference at a rally that simply accused his Department of Justice of having a “lingering stench.” Which is something that, were he more self aware, he would realize was emanating from himself. But for the time being, Rosenstein’s job is safe due to the paranoid musings of Trump’s State TV (aka Fox News).

Fox News Urges Trump to Fire Rosenstein Over Comments in the ‘Fake News, Failing’ New York Times

The latest bombshell to emerge from Washington D.C. in the twisted era of Donald Trump comes just as the controversy over Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is reaching a boiling point. Is it a distraction or a legitimate news story that demands immediate attention? No matter, it’s already getting the airwave blanketing that was inevitable considering the subject.

Donald Trump, Fox News

The New York Times is reporting that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had floated the idea of secretly recording Trump to gather evidence that he was mentally unstable and unfit for service. There was reportedly further discussion of invoking the 25th Amendment to declare the President incompetent and remove him from office. Other news reports have spoken to sources who say that Rosenstein was being sarcastic. And Rosenstein himself issued a firm denial.

What’s peculiar about this story, other than the distracting effect it has on Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual misconduct, is that the only other beneficiary of it would be the White House. It gives Trump an excuse to fire Rosenstein and appoint someone in his place who would put the brakes on the investigation of special counsel, Robert Mueller. But it would be somewhat hypocritical for Trump to do that on the basis of a story from a news source that he considers fake and failing. Consequently, he might need some support from his cheering section (and shadow cabinet) at State TV, also known as Fox News. And he’s already getting it:


[Note: Ingraham deleted this tweet the next day. Was it because Hannity took the opposite position?]

Wow. Are these three confirmed Trump-fluffers all buying into the “fake news” from the New York Times? Laura Ingraham, Gregg Jarrett, and Jeanine Pirro are three of Trump’s most devoted supplicants on Fox News. And it stands to reason that they would want to rush to give him cover to jettison the bone spur that has traveled from Trump’s foot to his ample backside. But will he take the bait?

Trump has posted ten tweets since this news broke, and none of them are about Rosenstein or the New York Times. Is he consulting with Sean Hannity, Bill Shine, and the rest of his propaganda team to come up with a strategy? Is he afraid to get out too far ahead of the story while it’s still unfolding? Is he getting spanked by a porn star at Mar-A-Lago? Who knows? But the fear factor may be the most plausible scenario. Because even his pals at Fox News aren’t completely in his corner. Shelby Holliday of Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal had this to say in an interview shortly after the story was released:

It probably won’t be long until Trump makes his views known about this. He is simply too lacking in self control to keep his mouth shut. But if he does fire Rosenstein he’s going to have to explain why he suddenly believes the “failing” New York Times” whose story was based on the anonymous sources that Trump says don’t exist. He will also have to face more charges of obstruction of justice as Mueller gets closer to wrapping up his probe. But if he let’s it go, then Mueller and company proceed as before. So all told, this is really a lose-lose proposition for Trump.

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

LATE BREAKING: Sean Hannity is diverging from his Fox colleagues above. On his program Friday night he had a personal message for Trump, warning him that “Under zero circumstances should the president fire anybody.” Hannity thinks Trump is being set up by Democrats – or the deep state, or Satan – and that giving Rosenstein the boot is a “set up,” a plot to justify impeachment. Those insidious demonrats.

Worse Than Omarosa: Trump Quotes Fox News Host Jeanine Pirro’s Insane Rant on Russia and Mueller

This Sunday will likely be remembered as the Omarosa Media Blitzkrieg, with its flurry of newsmaking interviews of the disgraced former Assistant to the President. While Donald Trump has already labeled her a “low life,” he has yet to explain why he gave her such a senior post in his Administration of Dunces in the first place, given how well he knew her.

Donald Trump, Jeanine Pirro

Among Omarosa’s criticisms of Trump are her assertions that he is flagrantly racist and misogynistic, and is suffering from a severe mental decline. Both of those are hardly breaking stories considering Trump’s history as a serial sexual predator and his very public display of dementia. And while the press is eating up Omarosa’s allegations, they are simultaneously casting doubt on her credibility.

However, there are many more players in the Era of Trump with far less credibility than Omarosa, starting with The Donald himself, a well-documented and unrepentant liar. And many of those credibility-challenged losers have their own shows on Fox News. Prominent among them is “Judge” Jeanine Pirro, who recently said that special counsel Robert Mueller is a greater threat to America than Vladimir Putin. And on the latest episode of her program she goes even further into the realm of deranged conspiracy crackpot. Her nine minute opening tirade sets the tone with this goofy introduction (video below):

“I’ve had a change of heart. Unlike everyone on the right, I don’t want the Mueller investigation to end so soon. I want it to keep going on and one and on. Because everyday it gets closer to proving Russian collusion. The collusion, however, with Russia and team Obama. Not Trump.”

Remember that claim that Pirro is supporting the ongoing Mueller probe. It will come into play in her closing. In between she hits on a bevy of previously debunked nonsense that even her colleagues at Fox News have renounced. Notably, the Uranium One story that was so expertly unraveled by Shepard Smith. She also railed against the entirety of the investigation of Trump’s collusion with Russia and obstruction of justice. She falsely claimed that the basis for the probe was the Christopher Steele dossier. She repeatedly called the dossier “discredited” despite the fact that much of it has been affirmed and none of it has been proven untrue. Smith laid these facts out as well.

However, revisiting lies that have already been exposed wasn’t enough for Pirro. She had to create a brand new scandalous allegation to smear the otherwise golden reputation of Bob Mueller. So Pirro goes off on some peculiar and wholly unsubstantiated allegations about a preposterous charge that Mueller took money from a Russian oligarch to finance FBI operations. She never bothered to cite a source for that charge of criminal behavior. But she did have a question for Mueller:

“Bob, my question to you is ‘How could you possibly be investigating Donald Trump when there is no credible basis for your investigation?’ And ‘What the hell have you and your Trump-hating, conflicted team of prosecutors come up with in the last nineteen months other than a tax evasion case that doesn’t involve Trump, Russia or collusion of any sort.'”

Seriously? Of all the question’s that Pirro could ask Mueller she chose one that is patently absurd and answerable by public records? She doesn’t know that Mueller has already indicted dozens of people for election related offenses, and that five have pleaded guilty? And she isn’t aware that Mueller has much more information about Trump and company than he’s disclosed to date? Yet Omarosa is being pilloried (deservedly so) for her credibility, but Pirro has a show on Fox News.

Pirro’s credibility isn’t all that needs to be questioned. We also have to wonder about her cognitive faculties. Because she closed this televised tantrum with a particularly pointed accusation aimed at Mueller:

“Bob, I really thinks it’s time for you to give up your phony investigation and get yourself your own criminal defense attorney.”

Let’s just set aside the reckless and unsupported charges that Mueller is guilty of some unspecified crimes. We know those exist only in the imaginations of wingnuts like Pirro. But recall how she began her monologue saying that she wants the Mueller probe to go on and on and on. And by the end of her rhetorical seizure she’s calling for him to “give up your phony investigation.” Make up your mind Judge. You sound as demented as the president whose – let’s say boots – you’re licking. But at least it got you a mention from the Commander-in-Tweets:

Pirro must be so proud that Trump picked the most easily recognized bullcrap from her interminably boring assault on Mueller and the truth. They really are a cute couple – of liars and traitors.

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

Fox News Has a New Mantra in Defense of Trump: Mueller is A Greater Threat Than Putin

The top priority of State TV (aka Fox News) for the past year – and the one unfolding – is to make sure that Donald Trump is safely sheltered from any and all criticism and the devastating effects of unsanitized truth. The more that the American people learn about what Trump is doing, and has done, the more political peril he and his accomplices are in.

Donald Trump Fox News

Fox News has, so far, been diligent in carrying out their mission to protect the President. They are his rapid response team when negative news is reported, and that’s almost all of it. They are the attack squad to neutralize critics and truth tellers. And they are even the “brain” trust that incubates Trump’s agenda and public pronouncements.

In the service of that calling, Fox News is now test marketing a new tactic aimed at undermining the rule of law and denigrating the people charged with enforcing it. It is a strategy familiar to totalitarian dictators who strive to hoard control over every institution of an otherwise free society. It surfaced recently when Fox’s Jeanine Pirro asked an eagerly agreeable guest whether special counsel Robert Mueller is “a greater threat than [Vladimir] Putin to this country.”

It’s an odd question for the obvious reasons. Putin is a ruthless dictator who has invaded neighboring countries, murdered his political adversaries, and waged a cyber war against the United States. While on the other hand, Mueller is a war hero, a lifelong public servant, and a man who has earned unqualified respect from across the political spectrum (at least until he took his current job). But the question is also a curious one coming from people who have lately been praising Putin as a strong leader who, according to Trump, would be a dandy friend to the U.S. and no threat whatsoever.

Nevertheless, the allegation has been making the rounds at Fox News. The latest eruption of this slander came from Fox News host Mark Levin during an interview on Sean Hannity’s program. And he wasn’t shy about making a pointedly defamatory charge with no basis to support it:

“Robert Mueller is a greater threat to this republic and the Constitution than anything Vladimir Putin did during the campaign. And I’m no fan of Vladimir Putin. He’s threatening to take down a President of the United States.”

So Levin’s theory is that Mueller is worse than Putin because he’s trying to remove a president that Putin installed. But he wasn’t through. As he continued he enumerated the reasons he thought Mueller’s investigation was improper. But he actually supplied a pretty good opening to explain all the reasons that mueller’s probe is proper and necessary. He launches into it saying “Now let’s walk through this quickly:”

“The President is not a witness to any crime. How do we know that? Because we don’t know what crime they’re even talking about. So he doesn’t need to be questioned as a witness.”

In fact, the President is both a witness and a participant in several potential crimes including conspiracy with a foreign government to interfere with an election, campaign finance law violations, and obstruction of justice. Just because Levin can’t identify Trump’s criminal exposure, doesn’t mean there isn’t any. And the need to question him about is apparent to any first-year law student.

“The President did not commit a crime. What crime did he commit? So he’s not a target, he doesn’t need to be questioned about that.”

Once again, the assertion that Trump did not commit a crime comes from Levin’s imagination. Currently Trump is considered to be a “subject” of the investigation, and that status can be changed to “target” at any time. So he does need to be questioned about that.

“According to the Department of Justice, a president can’t be indicted. A president cannot be questioned by a subordinate, like Mr. Mueller, about his prerogatives as president, that is, about the firing of a subordinate like Mr. Comey. So what questions, exactly, does Mr. Mueller have?”

Actually, the Justice Department’s guidance as to whether a president can be indicted is an administrative rule, not a law. It can be changed with the stroke of a pen. And there is no prohibition of a special counsel questioning a president. Levin is just making that one up. While Comey, as FBI Directer, can be terminated by the President, if it is proven to have been done in order to obstruct justice it is actionable as a crime.

These points by Levin all seem to be aimed at making excuses for why Trump should decline to be interviewed by Mueller. Of course the more salient reasons would be because he can’t help himself from lying (which even his own attorneys and some members of his administration have insinuated), and he is at heart a coward. Levin goes on to rant incoherently about Trump being a “white hat” hero and Mueller being an evil usurper of some undefined and unauthorized power. And Hannity agrees, describing the legally mandated operations of the Justice Department (which is being run by Trump appointees) as akin to the former Soviet Union.

It’s a rather peculiar spectacle to watch Fox News and the Republican leadership rail on Mueller, a man most of them praised as the perfect choice for special counsel when it was announced. But it’s nauseating to see a man with real integrity, principle, and courage, being trashed as a traitor to the country he served faithfully for his entire adult life. Especially when held up in comparison to the greedy, racist, sexual predator who is currently exploiting his occupancy of the White House to sell out the nation to its enemies. For the record, this is who Levin, Hannity, Fox News, and the GOP are castigating as a corrupt defiler of democracy:

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

Fox News Alert: Donald Trump Works Really Hard at Putting the White House in Total Disarray

Well, the rat is out of the bag. We finally have confirmation that Donald Trump’s White House is a swirling pit of ineptitude, staffed by morons who don’t know what the hell is going on. What’s more, they’re proud of it and they think it proves that they are dedicated overachievers. And these revelations are not insults thrown by partisan lefties. They’re straight from the horse’s ass: Fox News.

Jeanine Pirro Fox News

On Saturday’s episode of Justice with Judge Jeanine Pirro the “judge” hosted former Arkansas governor/Christianist minister, Mike Huckabee. In the course of their discussion, that was predictably bashing liberals, Huckabee decided to unveil some truths that are usually kept behind the dark curtain of rabid conservatism (video below). He said that:

“Here’s what I think people don’t understand about Donald Trump: he doesn’t sleep a lot, he works harder than anybody I’ve ever seen, he has so much going on that even his own staff cannot keep up with all that’s going on.

“I used to have a chief of staff and she would often say ‘If I know everything that’s going on, there’s not enough going on.’ Well let me assure you, in the Trump White House there is nobody that knows everything that’s going on because nobody can keep up with that much stuff.”

Is he kidding? This is Huckabee’s assessment of the laziest man in Washington. Trump has played golf for about a third of his presidency. He doesn’t attend or read his presidential daily briefings unless they have pictures or happy news about him. He refuses to prepare for critical events like summits with Kim Jong Un or Vladimir Putin. He holds meaningless photo-ops with his cabinet and for bill signings. He never seems to know about the corruption of his own senior staff. He wastes time traveling to friendly red states to hold ego-fluffing rallies. And he spends countless hours (his “Executive Time”) watching cable news. Mostly Fox News, of course, where he gets his intelligence reports, political strategies, policy updates from Sean Hannity.

What’s more, if it’s true that nobody knows what’s going on, then that only exposes the White House as incompetent and unable to fulfill its mission to serve the people. It also means that Huckabee’s own daughter, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, is one of those who doesn’t know what’s going on. So how the hell can she inform the press of the administration’s activities? Not that she ever has any intention to.

We should probably be thankful to Huckabee for his candid assessment of a White House in disarray. That’s been painfully obvious to any conscientious observer, but we don’t often hear Trump’s insiders admitting it. Another word for not knowing what’s going is “ignorance.” And the ignorance of Trump’s staff is clearly not due to Trump’s allegedly dynamic schedule. It’s due to his own inability to comprehend the complexities of his job and his deliberate efforts to withhold pertinent information from more intelligent and experienced professionals. And that’s at least partly due to the need to keep his financial corruption and collusion with foreign enemies secret.

Much of Saturday’s program was consumed by Pirro whining about incivility in politics. That’s rich coming from perhaps the most vitriolic screecher on television. Pirro has been barking out contemptuous scorn at President Obama, Hillary Clinton, and every other left-of-center American for years. Just last week she complained about being “treated like a dog” by Whoopi Goldberg on The View. But she conveniently forget to mention that she called the whole cast of the show an epithet that rhymes with “sock cucker.” And then she has the nerve to say that:

“The level of hatred toward the 45th president of the United States is beyond anything we’ve seen in American history…Now Donald Trump is the target of vitriol so papable it’s simply frighten…It’s almost impossible to have a rational discussion that doesn’t turn into a food fight.”

Let’s just set aside that she appears to be drunk (“so papable it’s simply frighten”?) Her contention that Trump has been the victim of more vitriol than any other president is ludicrous. Barack Obama, who was accused of being the founder of ISIS and the Kenyan-born spawn of Satan, might have something to say about that. Or maybe John Kennedy or Abraham Lincoln, whose lives were cut short by rather vitriolic assassins.

Pirro had some help from her another guest on the program who was equally delusional about who in America is uncivil. Trump’s senior counsel, Kellyanne Conway showed up to assert that Trump “is a president who believes that diplomacy and conversation is better than hostility and conflict.” Seriously? The president who encouraged his supporters to assault protesters and opffered to pay their legal fees; who has disparaging and infantile nicknames for every opponent; and who goads unstable tyrants into nuclear confrontations? That president believes in diplomacy?

At least Pirro had a brief moment of self-awareness in the opning paragraphs of her new book, Liars, Leakers, and Liberals: The Case Against the Anti-Trump Conspiracy. She writes that “We know what the liberal media think of Trump voters: They’re deplorables, idiots, rednecks, and people who cling to God, guns, and religion. To those charges, I plead guilty–guilty and proud!” So Pirro is guilty, even proud, of being a deplorable, idiot, redneck. That explains a lot.

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

Fox News ‘Judge’ Pirro: If I Were in Charge the President Would Be Playing Golf Right Now

Never let it be said that Fox News doesn’t have its priorities in the right place. They know their mission is to advance the interests of Donald Trump and his perversion of Republican Party politics. They dutifully pursue that mission with enthusiasm for the propaganda they espouse throughout their broadcast day.

Donald Trump, Jeanine Pirro

One of the most devoted disciples of Fox’s Trump Cult is “Judge” Jeanine Pirro. Her spittle-inflected ravings are a unique spectacle on cable news. Even Sean Hannity’s fawning adoration of Dear Leader doesn’t reach the passionate infatuation expressed by Pirro on every episode of her relentless Trump-fluffing program. After all, she recently declared that Trump had “fulfilled the biblical prophecy of the gods.” And on Friday morning she proved why she is viewed as the Fox “personality” who has the most direct line to Trump’s brain.

Pirro was interviewed Friday on Trump’s favorite Fox News program, Fox and Friends (video below). The segment began with a discussion of whether Trump should sit for an interview with special counsel Robert Mueller. Co-host Brian Kilmeade asked Pirro what she would do if she were in charge. “If I were in charge,” she began, “the President would be playing golf right now. There is no way the President should appear before Bob Mueller.”

OK then. Not only is Pirro against Trump talking to Mueller, she apparently isn’t keen on him doing any presidential work either. She wants Trump to be doing what he does more than anything else: visiting his luxury resorts and playing golf. That’s something he has already done more than 100 times since taking office. And to tell the truth, most Americans would also probably prefer that Trump camp out at Mar-A-Lago rather than do more damage to the nation. But Pirro wasn’t finished giving her view of Trump’s responsibility to the people. But her reasons for having the President avoid a sit-down with Mueller are sorely lacking in reason:

“Think about it. If a sitting president cannot be indicted, and this president were to be questioned, it would only be for the purpose of an indictment. The legislative branch is not gonna be in a position – which is what Mueller would like – to get the testimony of the President so that they can then use it to impeach him. That’s the problem.”

What’s the problem? Pirro isn’t making sense. First of all, there is no law prohibiting the indictment of a sitting President. It’s a rule within the Justice Department that can be changed at any time and has never been tested in court. Trump’s TV lawyer Rudy Giuliani has tried miserably to make the same argument. More to the point, Pirro says that Mueller only wants Trump’s testimony so that Congress can impeach him. Which implies that Trump has something to say that would warrant impeachment. Yes, Jeanine, that is a problem. And it’s also a problem when a president is afraid to talk with a law enforcement investigator. Is there any better indicator of guilt?

Pirro’s opposition to impeachment, however, is limited to its use against Trump. Later in this interview she insisted that Justice Department investigators, including Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, should be impeached. Never mind that she offered no justification other than her rabid hostility to anyone who is even tangentially critical of her White House boyfriend. The whole strategy of the White House and its PR division (aka Fox News) is to demean the nation’s institutions of law in order to convince their base that there is massive conspiracy against Trump. But the truth is that it’s reality that is conspiring against the President and his frantic and irrational behavior is proof that he knows it.

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