Fox News’ Senior Whipping Boy: Juan Williams Has Tolerated Political and Racial Bias for Two Decades

The Huffington Post just published an article by Yashar Ali that explored the reasons behind Kimberly Guilfoyle’s surprise departure from Fox News. Donald Trump Jr’s lover was criticized for trying to hang on to her Fox gig while shacking up with the President’s recently divorced son. How could she, folks wondered, comment on Trump without bias under these circumstance?

Fox News, Juan Williams

However, according to Ali, that wasn’t the reason for Fox terminating her. Like many Fox personalities before her, Guilfoyle has been accused of sexual misconduct and abusive behavior. She denies the charges, but Ali’s reporting includes more than twenty witnesses. However, there was an interesting side note in the article that deserves more attention. To demonstrate the deteriorating environment surrounding Guilfoyle, Ali wrote that:

“Guilfoyle had become increasingly isolated in the past year, sources said. Three of her co-hosts on ‘The Five’ (Dana Perino, Jesse Watters and Greg Gutfeld) have second shows to host themselves. Guilfoyle was not given the opportunity to host her own program while she was a co-host of the panel show.”

So of the five co-hosts of the creatively-named The Five (which airs at 5:00pm ET), three had second shows and one (Guilfoyle) did not. The fifth is Juan Williams. Since 1997 Williams has been the beleagured African-American, Fox-style liberal at Fox News, walking the tight rope of sheepishly representing the Democratic ideology while staying in the good graces of Fox’s conservative hierarchy. For more than twenty years Williams has been a loyal employee who often defended Fox News when they were criticized for their obvious right-wing bias. He would make himself available for appearance on other Fox shows to take abuse from the conservatives who always outnumbered him.

During his time at the network, many commentators who joined after him were rewarded with their own shows. Everyone from Gretchen Carlson and Jesse Watters to Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson, and many more. They all have two things in common that Williams lacks: They are rabidly conservative and they are white. So despite having more seniority and more experience, Williams was passed over repeatedly by his right-wing, Caucasian peers.

It might be easy to explain Fox’s unwillingness to promote Williams as due to his politics. Fox has never had solo liberal host in it’s twenty-two year history. And as co-hosts and panelists liberals have always been outnumbered by conservatives. So his politics surely had something to do with his stagnant career. But for a network that is overwhelming dominated by white commentators and hosts it’s hard to dismiss the likelihood that race also played a profound role in the failure of Williams to land his own program.

The question is: Why does Williams stick around when it’s so obvious that Fox is discriminating against him both politically and racially? If he had any self-respect he would quit and issue a sharp rebuke of the network for it’s biases. But he is either addicted to the money, or he is so weak-livered that he can’t stand up for himself or the principles of equality. I think the former is part of the reason for his tolerance of this workplace abuse, but the latter is probably more responsible for it. That weakness is evident in his mushy advocacy of Democratic positions, which he will support only up until the point where he feels like he’s trampling on his wingnut colleagues. He almost always comes short of the sort of powerful argument that a real liberal would present.

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

As a result, Williams will always come short as a commentator who will never advance to a host as he watches other lesser Foxies leap frog him to greater success. Fox News will keep around because he fulfills their need for an African-American leftie. But they are keeping him around only for show and to persist with the lie of fairness and balance. Williams will stay because he’s a wimpy slave to the Fox plantation that allows him to hang out in the big house with his masters.

Was Trump Jr.’s Lover, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Forced Out of Her Fox News Hosting Gig?

A couple of months ago, and only a few weeks after he left his wife and five children, Don Trump Jr. went public about his red-hot romance with Kimberly Guilfoyle, a co-host of Fox News’ The Five. The announcement presented an obvious ethical conflict by having an alleged news commentator in a relationship with the son of the President, the most covered subject in the news. Not that Fox News ever cared about journalistic ethics. Most of their commentators, hosts, and guests are openly deferential to Donald Trump, if not outright advocates (see Sean Hannity).

Kimberly Guilfoyle, Don Trump Jr

On Friday it was revealed that Guilfoyle will no longer be fluffing for daddy Trump on Fox News. There was no reason given for the separation. Neither Guilfoyle nor Trump Jr has commented as of the time of this writing. However, it is believed that she will be going to work for the pro-Trump Super PAC, America First. The only comment by Fox News was a one line farewell that said they had “parted ways.” No mention of her twelve years of service to the network, or her legal analyses, or her hosting duties. And no well wishes for her future endeavors.

Which raises questions about whether Guilfoyle voluntarily left Fox to go on the campaign trail with her boyfriend, or if Fox News had pangs of guilt over employing the paramour of the President’s progeny. Yashir Ali of the Huffington Post is reporting that there are three sources saying that she did not leave voluntarily.

Regardless of the circumstances of her departure, it really won’t create any waves in the flow of the political universe by having a Fox News Trump flunky essentially transferring to a different division of the Trump PR enterprise. The Trump administration and Fox News are, after all, two legs of the same beast. Guilfoyle will continue doing what she has in the past, but without her own seat on the set in the Fox studio. She will even likely continue to appear on Fox News as a surrogate for her lover’s father. And she’ll be interviewed by her former colleagues in a mockery of what journalism is supposed to be. In the end, she is just another Fox Newser who has been sucked into the Trump orbit, and she can be relied upon to obediently exalt Dear Leader, just as she always has.

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

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

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

Fox News, Sean Hannity, White House

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Fox News Host Rips Media Attacks on Women in Trump Admin – Ignores Abuse of Women By Trump

Kimberly Guilfoyle is one of the conservative co-hosts on the Fox News daily program “The Five.” She is a reliable mouthpiece for Donald Trump and his right-wing, Republican agenda. Last year she was even a candidate for the post of White House press secretary, but lost out to Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Fox News, Donald Trump, Kimberly Guilfoyle

In an interview for the uber-rightist website Daily Signal, Guilfoyle expressed her concern for traumatized children being separated from their parents on the border. No, wait, scratch that. How ridiculous. Actually Guilfoyle was expressing her concern for the poor, beleaguered women who work in Donald Trump’s White House. Some would say that they, too, have been traumatized. According to The Hill, Guilfoyle’s sympathies included these remarks:

“It’s sad because these are really incredible bright, strong, patriotic women serving their country, admirably, at great personal sacrifice,” […]

“They’ve been dealt an unfair hand by the media who’s just very dishonest in the way that they cover them, portray them, and really dishonor the sacrifice and the service that they give to all of us, each and every day.” […]

“I just wish [the media] were better about, in fact, being honest about what the accomplishments are, what the sacrifices are. And really, the personal attacks are just quite disgusting. I felt and experienced personal attacks myself based on beliefs and being a conservative woman.” […]

“I just think it’s unfair. It’s not building other people up, that’s for sure. I certainly don’t like it when other women do it to one another.”

First of all, the apparent purpose of both the women and the men in the Trump administration is to disseminate lies and glorify their leader. To the extent that the thanklessness and disrepute that go along with job is a sacrifice, it’s their own fault. And Secondly, when did Guilfoyle ever criticize her conservative comrades for the unfair and dishonest attacks against women like Michelle Obama, Valerie Jarrett, Hillary Clinton, Loretta Lynch, Samantha Power, or Susan Rice? Guilfoyle’s sudden sensitivity is glaringly disingenuous and hypocritical.

What’s more, Guilfoyle utterly ignores the fact Trump has been accused of sexual harassment and assault by at least sixteen women (see video below). He’s even admitted to criminal assault in the infamous Access Holywood recording. But apparently Guilfoyle thinks it’s worse to endure the criticism of partisan politics than the personal agony inflicted by a sexual predator.

What makes Guilfoyle’s complaints even more absurd is that she works for Fox News, a network whose corporate culture virtually encourages sexual harassment. Former honchos at the network (i.e. CEO Roger Ailes, President Bill Shine, Bill O’Reilly, Eric Bolling, etc.) were examples of an atmosphere that was distinctly hostile to women. However, perhaps her concern is of a more personal nature. With speculation about Sanders’ quitting, Guilfoyle may still be in the running for a job in Trump’s White House. And boosting her prospects this time is the fact that she is currently dating Don Jr. That’s a relationship that would prohibit her from doing any commentary on her boyfriend’s father at a reputable TV network. But then, the operative word there is “reputable,” which has never applied to Fox News.

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

Sarah Sanders Uses Bible to Defend Trump’s Heinous Policy of Ripping Apart Families Seeking Asylum

The White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, is best known for her ability to dispassionately lie about any matter that arises in the course of the daily press briefings. It’s a skill that most of the rabid zealots in Donald Trump’s administration sorely lack. But it often comes across as callous when the subject requires some measure of empathy.

Sarah Huckabee-Sanders

That was exhibited in spades on Thursday as Sanders was questioned about the heart-wrenching policy that Trump has enacted to rip crying children from the arms of their terrified parents. This policy has drawn broad condemnation from across the political spectrum, yet Trump and Co. refuse to halt its enforcement. That position took a peculiar turn when Attorney General Jeff Sessions cited a bible verse to justify his nauseating actions. However, the quotation he addressed only referred to obedience of the law, but made no reference to tearing families apart. Even Trump-supporting evangelical Franklin Graham called the policy “disgraceful.” At the daily press briefing, Sanders was asked by CNN’s Jim Acosta to comment on the remarks by Sessions (video below):

Acosta: On these children that are being separated from their families as they come across the border, the Attorney General earlier today said that somehow there is justification for this in the bible. Where does it say in the Bible that it’s moral to take children away from their mothers?
Sanders: I’m not aware of the Attorney General’s comment or what he would be referencing. I can say say that it is very biblical to enforce the law. That is actually repeated a number of times throughout the Bible.
Acosta: You just said it’s in the bible to follow the law…
Sanders: That’s not what I said. And I know it’s hard for you to understand even short sentences, I guess.

Huh? That’s exactly what she said just seconds before denying that she said it. This is advanced level gaslighting. And in the process of flagrantly lying about what she just said, Sanders delivers a wholly inappropriate insult with regard to Acosta’s ability to understand her short (dishonest) sentences. It’s notable that other reporters raised the same inquiries, but Acosta, a Latino reporter from CNN, was the only one she insulted. And if Sanders is looking for an appropriate bible verse to quote, she might try this one referring to refugees (sojourners) from Leviticus (19:33-34) which, when President Obama cited it, Fox News went berserk:

“33. And if a stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not do him wrong. 34. The stranger that sojourneth with you shall be unto you as the home-born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were sojourners in the land of Egypt.”

Sanders then went on to accuse Democrats of being responsible for the law requiring the separation of undocumented children from their parents. But there is no such law. It is being done as a result of an arbitrary policy implemented solely by the Trump administration. Nevertheless, Sanders said that Trump has called on Democrats to change the (nonexistent) law. But she fails to explain how Democrats could do that when they are in the minority and have no power to introduce or pass such legislation. Likewise, she ignores why Republicans, who do have the power, don’t just change the law themselves. Since they have the majority, they could make this issue go away overnight. What’s stopping them?

Among the other journalists questioning Sanders about this were Paula Reid of CBS, who advised Sanders, in vain, that there was no law mandating the separation of children. Also Brian Karem of Sentinel Newspapers made an impassioned plea asking “Sarah, you’re a parent. Don’t you have empathy for what these people are going through?” Sanders responded by recognizing a different reporter for an unrelated question. And that’s fairly typical of how she and Trump deal with difficult issues that require compassion and some expression of humanity.

Also brought up in the briefing were reports that Sanders and her deputy, Raj Shah, are planning their exit from the White House sometime this year. She would neither confirm nor deny the reports, but still criticized the reporting. We’ll see what she say when she actually leaves, which is all but certain. And we’ll also see what direction Trump will take when he names her replacement. I’m betting on Kimberly Guilfoyle of Fox News since she’s already sleeping with Don, Jr.

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

Larry Kudlow is the Latest Contestant on Trump’s Reality TV Game Show Presidency

The mayhem at the White House is continuing as Donald Trump’s behavior gets ever more frantic and irrational. in the past few hours he has fired his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, the State Department’s top diplomacy aide, Steve Goldstein, and his personal assistant, John McEntee. There are rumblings from insiders that Chief of Staff John Kelly, National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, and Veterans Administration director David Shulkin are also on the chopping block.

Fox News Trump Apprentice

As these vacancies open up, Trump will have the opportunity to name new appointees that will be better supplicants to his will. That has already played out with his nomination of current CIA director Mike Pompeo to replace Tillerson. And the news on Wednesday is that Trump has picked CNBC contributor Larry Kudlow to succeed the fired Gary Cohn as his chief economic advisor.

By selecting Kudlow, Trump is continuing a pattern of bringing television personalities into his administration. Mostly they have been from Fox News and include K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastian Gorka, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel. Former Fox and Friends co-host, Heather Nauert, was also tapped by Trump to be the State Department spokesperson last year. And now she has already been promoted to replace Goldstein. Her entire career has been with Fox News and she has no diplomatic experience whatsoever.

The departure of Trump’s communications director, Hope Hicks, last month has set off a flurry of speculation as to who would fill her shoes. Among those being considered is Fox News co-host of The Five, Kimberly Guilfoyle. She has been on deck for a Trump slot for quite a while. And another Fox and Friends host, Pete Hegseth, is reportedly being wooed to lead the Veterans Administration should Shulkin get tossed. Prior to joining Fox, Hegseth headed up a Koch brothers front group that pretended to advocate for veterans. But he has zero experience running a massive bureaucracy like the VA, nor has he ever worked in the health services field that comprises much of what the VA does.

Trump’s National Security Advisor, McMaster, is also teetering on the brink. His successor is rumored to be another Fox News contributor, John Bolton. He served in George Bush’s state department and as Ambassador to the United Nations. Consequently Bolton played a major role in the fabricated weapons of mass destruction excuses to invade Iraq, as well as in the disastrous administration of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Obviously Trump is most comfortable working with TV personalities. It seems like his entire pool of possible job applicants come from the ranks of people he’s seen on Fox or other programs. His experience is so bereft of substance that he can’t possibly know anyone that has actual credentials in the jobs he needs to fill. And he wouldn’t want them anyway because they might not be photogenic. As a result, America will be burdened with shallow, unqualified amateurs running government agencies whose work affects us all. But at least they’ll look good when they sit down for softball interviews with Sean Hannity.

This is what Fox’s Laura Ingraham considers Trump “hitting his stride,” and “getting a really strong team in place.” And coincidentally, that’s exactly how Trump sees it. On Tuesday he explained to reporters that these White House shake-ups were just the normal fine tuning of personnel. “I’m really at a point,” he said, “where we’re getting very close to having the Cabinet, and other things, that I want.” That’s after a year in office where all of his original appointments were also his choices, but apparently not what he wanted. Ironically, not having the leadership one wants is something most Americans can relate to right now.

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

Who Will Trump Choose to Replace Hope Hicks? (Hint: Is He Watching Fox News?)

Another day, another White House staffer falls out of the sinking ship. This time it’s one of Donald Trump’s most loyal and longest serving aides, communications director Hope Hicks. The camera shy press liaison is reported to be leaving within the coming weeks. And I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that yesterday she admitted at a congressional inquiry that she has been telling “white lies” as a part of her official duties.

Hope Hicks

That’s probably the problem. Hicks was telling only white lies when the President had warned her to stick to only the darkest of all possible lies. He gave her plenty of examples via his own behavior to make it clear what was expected of her. Obviously, she wasn’t able to cut it. Although she had her moments. Like when she helped to draft the false excuse for why Don Jr. was meeting with Russians. Or when she wrote the press release defending her boyfriend, Rob Porter, after he was revealed to be a wife-beater.

Trump will not likely make the same mistake again. He has a strong track record of hiring brazen liars to staff his White House operation. Champion fabricators like Sean Spicer, Anthony Scaramucci, and the current mistress of propaganda, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, have distinguished this president’s press office.

So who will Trump turn to to fill this critical post? It will have to be someone who doesn’t care about having a good reputation with the public or the media. In fact, the more hate for the media the better. After all, Trump regards the press as the enemy of the American people.” The Hicks successor will need to be able to lie on camera, even when it’s painfully obvious that they are lying. He or she should have a relationship with other professional prevaricators like Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh.

However, it isn’t necessary that the communications director candidate have any actual experience in communications. Trump prefers people who have little or no idea what they are doing. Probably to assure that they know less than he does (admittedly, a low bar). And in the end, he wouldn’t really trust anyone other than himself. An article in the Associated Press noted that Trump “increasingly sees himself as the White House’s only effective spokesperson.”

Given the criteria for filling this job, only one source for human resources comes to mind. Trump will have to poach another staffer from the pool of Trump-fluffers at Fox News. The Fox studio is a rich vein of inexperienced, dishonest, shameless, butt-kissers. It’s a vein Trump has tapped many times before for aides including K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastion Gorka, Heather Nauert, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel.

There are two names at Fox that stand out as potential White House flacks. Laura Ingraham would slide right into the role with her smug arrogance and jaunty know-it-allism. But having just secured a primetime show on Fox, Ingraham may be reluctant to bail. She may also be locked into a long-term contract.

That leaves Kimberly Guilfoyle. She has been on deck for a Trump slot for quite a while. Last year Trump insiders were telling the media that he “wants Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle to take [Sean Spicer’s] place.” She is currently a co-host of Fox’s right-wing gab-fest, The Five. She has never been a journalist and has no experience in press relations. So she has those assets going for her. Trump may also appreciate Guilfoyle’s admiration for Vladimir Putin, who she thought would be a better president than Barack Obama.

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

There are a few other names that could be thrown into the pot. Ainsley Earhardt of Trump’s favorite Fox News program, Fox and Friends. Evening Anchor Martha MacCallum could bring back some blondness to the gig. Or maybe, in a bid for the millennial audience, Tomi Lahren’s juvenile outbursts could be just the right spice for Trump’s media taco bowl. Only time will tell. And there’s no hurry since Hicks will still be around for a few weeks, or until she has to meet with special counsel Robert Mueller.

Whaaa? Trump Wants to Cancel All Press Briefings Because ‘The Ratings Are So High’

Last week Donald Trump floated a proposal to cancel all future press briefings. The comment was made during an interview with Jeanine Pirro on his favorite “news” network, Fox News. He followed that up with a tweet affirming his desire to silence the White House press office.

Donald Trump

Trump’s casual suggestion that he might just cancel all future press briefings reflects his tendencies toward fascist authoritarianism. The presidency is not his fiefdom. It is a position of service to the people. Press briefings are the method by which the people’s intermediaries in the media have opportunities to hold national leaders accountable. They cannot be replaced by written press releases. What’s more, Trump’s anger is entirely misplaced. He’s mad at the press because he and his staff are incompetent.

But Trump went even further with his hostile proposal to wrap his presidency in a soundproof cocoon. And his reasoning sunk even deeper into an illogical rant that exposes his deranged thought processes:

“These press conferences are like the biggest thing on daytime television, OK. You see the ratings. They’re blowing away everything, on just about, I think, everything, on daytime television. What I’d love to do is stop them.”

So Trump is now intent on stopping pressing briefings because – – – they are too popular? Trump is actually right, for once, about ratings. The Sean Spicer Show (Fibby Spice) does pull in an audience. And ratings reflect what America’s TV viewers want to see. Apparently they are anxious to see the media holding the President accountable and forcing his administration to explain its actions.

So obviously Trump wants to put an end to that. Ironically, three weeks ago Trump cited those same ratings as the reason he would never part with Spicer. He told the Washington Post that “I’m not firing Sean Spicer. That guy gets great ratings. Everyone tunes in.” Now insiders are hinting that Spicer will soon be replaced, possibly by Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle.

So what happened between then and now that made him so scared of the ratings? Could it possibly be that he’s incapable of justifying his unethical actions and comments with regard to the firing of FBI Director James Comey? Does he recognize that he’s confessed to impeachable acts and needs to shut down the press before the country finds out? Clearly his motivation, at least in part, includes a desire to punish the media. He said so himself:

“They will be very unhappy, because the ratings are so high that I don’t know what these networks are going to do. They’re going to start to cry. They get free ratings because of me and yet they don’t treat us fairly.”

Setting aside Trump’s authoritarian tendencies to clampdown on the press, his concept of their purpose is painfully ignorant. He is not there to produce ratings for the media. And to the extent that he does it’s a reflection on the public’s interest in government, not his popularity. But the kicker is that Trump thinks the media owes him positive coverage because of the ratings that he claims are his doing. Donald Trump can’t stop acting like a reality TV game show host long enough to be president. And that, along with his narcissism, paranoia, and general incompetence, makes him an imminent threat to the nation.

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

Trump is Frantically Looking to Hire Fox News People to Staff His Flailing Press Office

The controversy over Donald Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey continues to unfold. And the President insists on making matters worse with comments that are implicit admissions of impeachable offenses. For instance, Trump told NBC’s Lester Holt that he asked Comey if he was a subject of an FBI investigation. He also asked Comey to pledge an oath of loyalty and threatened him with releasing secret tape recordings. All of these could be regarded as ethical breaches sufficient to warrant an impeachment inquiry.

Donald Trump Sean Spicer

While the core story is as disturbing as anything that’s come out of Washington in decades, there are spin-offs that are equally unsettling. Among them are recent reports concerning the toxic status of Trump’s White House Press Office. Sean Spicer and company have been taking a severe beating over their inability to communicate a consistent, coherent message. They have lost credibility among their peers and, apparently, their bosses as well. On Friday Jeanine Pirro of Fox News asked Trump if Spicer’s job was secure. He pointedly declined to give a straight answer.

Trump is so upset that he actually proposed eliminating the daily press briefings and communicating via Twitter. He also suggested that he might just hold weekly press conferences by himself. An article in the Associated Press noted that Trump “increasingly sees himself as the White House’s only effective spokesperson.” While the absence of regular press avails would ordinarily be an unprecedented insult to the public trust, in the case of this White House it hardly matters. Very little of substance, or truth, is derived from their daily get-togethers.

Now there are reports that Trump is sending out feelers to reshape his press operation more to his liking. In the same AP article there was a line that revealed where Trump’s thinking is headed for the near future:

“Trump is mulling expanding the communications team and has eyed hiring producers from Fox News, according to one White House official.”

That should fix everything. When your press office isn’t lying well enough, get yourself some professionals to do it. For the record, Trump has already tapped Fox News for several administration appointments. Former Foxies on the White House payroll currently include K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastion Gorka, Heather Nauert, Richard Grennell, and Jonathan Wachtel. There has never been an administration that was so packed with people from a major news enterprise. And now that’s going to get even worse.

Among the rumored changes is one that predicts the departure of Press Secretary Sean Spicer. Trump insiders are telling the media that Trump “wants Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle to take his place.” Guilfoyle was an attorney who is currently a co-host of Fox’s right-wing gab-fest, The Five. She has never been a journalist and has no experience in press relations. That surely won’t bother Trump who regards inexperience as an asset. Trump may also appreciate Guilfoyle’s admiration for Vladimir Putin, who she thought would be a better president than Barack Obama. And if you don’t believe the anonymous sources speculating about Guilfoyle, the story broke two days earlier on Alex Jones’ Infowars. So that should settle it.

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

By bringing in Fox News producers and presenters, the White House press office would take on a new identity as an overtly partisan purveyor of propaganda. So one might ask, what’s the difference? Well, it would also cement Trump’s image as a TV character who relies on the fakery of entertainment values over honest journalism. And it would reinforce the relationship between Trump and Fox, which is already a marriage of political convenience and ideology. But most of all, it would abandon any hope of securing the respect of the American public or the world at large. It would turn the press office into a punchline. And considering that the Trump administration is already a bad joke, they don’t really have that far to go.

Irish Lives Matter? Fox News Celebrates Racism On St. Patrick’s Day

Leave it to Fox News to turn the most slammin’, sloshin’, party holiday of the year into an opportunity to demean a civil rights movement devoted to saving lives and improving relations with society’s institutions.

foxnews-stpatricks

Today’s episode of “The Five” opened with an extended segment of the panel’s tribute to St. Patrick’s Day by parading an array of everything they could find that was painted green, including donuts, milkshakes, and tacos. But it didn’t take long for them find a way to devolve into the offensive rhetoric that is the hallmark America’s rightist wingnut network. Somehow a light-hearted discussion about green beer and leprechauns led to the following exchange between Juan Williams and Kimberly Guilfoyle:

Juan Williams: Irish people were stereotyped and denigrated for a long time.
Kimberly Guilfoyle: And the Irish got over it. They don’t run around going Irish Lives Matter

This is one of those times when screaming at the TV just isn’t sufficiently satisfying. Guilfoyle actually believes that there is a coherent equivalence in America today between the current state of prejudice experienced by African-Americans and the Irish. She thinks that her snide mockery of Black Lives Matters makes a cogent point about civil rights.

Guilfoyle would be right if the Irish were being gunned down in the streets while unarmed for trivial alleged crimes. She would be right if the Irish were subject to institutionalized racism during encounters with law enforcement. She would be right if driving while Irish was a thing. But since none of that exists in reality, she’s just another Fox News bigot trying and failing to disparage a movement that is working hard to resolve real problems.

Fox News, of course, has a history of being openly biased, and St. Patrick’s Day has been the springboard for it before. A couple of years ago the Guinness Beer company made a principled decision to skip New York’s St. Patrick’s Day parade because the LGBT community was prohibited from participating. That led Rupert Murdoch to tweet

“Where will this end? Guinness pulls out of religious parade bullied by gay orgs who try to take it over. Hope all Irish boycott the stuff.”

At the time, News Corpse spelled out all the reasons that tweet exposed Murdoch as being either senile or drunk. Not the least of which is his ludicrous suggestion that Irish Americans, or any other celebrant, is going to abstain from drinking the most famous Irish beer in the world on St. Patrick’s Day. And as if to rub it in that Murdoch is a raging fool, last year Ireland voted to legalize same-sex marriage and gays proudly marched in this year’s parade.

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

Rupert Murdoch