Fox News Senior Legal Analyst: Adam Schiff is Correct on Evidence of Trump Conspiracy and Obstruction

The Republicans in Congress have been going absolutely batty over what they regard is the total exoneration of Donald Trump by the Mueller Report – which none of them have seen a single page of. They are even escalating their attacks on Trump’s Democratic critics to include absurd demands for apologies and the resignation of House Intelligence Committee Chair, Adam Schiff. Trump even weighed in on that matter in a typically reckless, dishonest, and hostile tweet.

Donald Trump, Robert Mueller

So you have to wonder how Trump and his MAGA Martinets will respond when they hear that the senior legal analyst at fox News agrees with Rep. Schiff. In a conversation with host Neil Cavuto (video below), Andrew Napolitano presented the bare legal facts that demonstrate Trump’s complicity in conspiratorial endeavors with Russia and efforts to cover them up. Napolitano noted that special counsel Robert Mueller “must have found some evidence of a conspiracy,” and that “there obviously is evidence of obstruction of justice.” He elaborated on those points during the interview:

“I think that Congressman Schiff is correct. In that report will be evidence of the existence of a conspiracy. Not enough evidence to prove the existence beyond a reasonable doubt. In that report will be evidence of obstruction of justice, interfering with an FBI investigation for a personal gain. But not enough evidence to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.”

That just happens to be precisely the case that Schiff has been making for months. He told CNN that:

“There was a big difference between whether there was evidence of collusion – and I think that evidence is in plain sight – and whether you can establish proof beyond a reasonable doubt of a criminal conspiracy.”

So all the hoopla by the right and the devoted cult followers of Trump is, as usual, just the yammering of ignorant partisans who are more interested in feeding their fantasies than in accepting reality. And the reality is that there is abundant evidence of criminality by Trump and his associates. Whether a prosecutor could obtain a conviction by the standards that apply in a courtroom is irrelevant to the discussion of whether the President’s activities were immoral, unethical, or proof of his unfitness for office.

The key point here is whether there is sufficient cause to proceed with efforts to release the Mueller Report in full and complete the investigation into Trump and Russia’s documented interference with the 2016 presidential election. Some of Schiff’s colleagues in Congress expressed their rage that anyone would continue to doubt that the President was vindicated. But Schiff masterfully put them in their place with an emotional and fact-filled response to their personal disparagement of him. “You may think it’s OK,” Schiff said, “how Trump and his associates interacted with Russians during the campaign. I don’t.”

And the America people don’t think it’s OK either. Which is why Schiff and the Democrats in Congress need to continue their efforts to bring light to the nefarious affairs of Trump et al, by demanding the release of the full Mueller Report and issuing subpoenas, if necessary, for Mueller and Attorney General Barr. The nation deserves to know, as another unscrupulous president once said, whether or not their president is a crook. Because if we don’t stop him now, he’ll just do it again (which he probably already is).

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

Sean Hannity Defends Trump’s Treason Summit Even While His Fox News Colleagues Bail

Monday morning Donald Trump held hands with his bestie, Vladimir Putin, for the duration of a surreal press conference wherein he repeatedly took Russia’s side on every issue (here are some must see excerpts). It was a festival of betrayal the likes of which have never been seen.

Donald Trump Sean Hannity

The reaction to this internationally televised farce was nearly unanimous disgust and, for most Americans, anger and embarrassment. Trump refused to condemn Russia for interfering with our election. He dismissed his own intelligence agencies in favor of Putin’s promises. He kept bringing up debunked conspiracy theories about Democratic computer servers and Hillary Clinton’s emails.

It was a pitiful sight that marked Trump as the deceitful dotard that he has become known to the world as. And he received the reception that he deserved from most rational observers. Which, of course, leaves out Sean Hannity. On his radio show Monday morning he unleashed an extended rant defending Trump and denigrating his critics. That included some of Hannity’s Fox News colleagues. Hannity said in part:

“These Republicans have been so pathetically weak. They have been so feckless. They have been so visionless.”

And it only got worse from there. Let’s review just who Hannity is referring to, and what they said that rattled Hannity so:

  • Abby Huntsman: No negotiation is worth throwing your own people and country under the bus.
  • Stuart Varney: It was not a very forceful presentation from President Trump with Putin standing right next to him. Not forceful at all.
  • Neil Cavuto: Trump’s performance was disgusting. I’m sorry. This is the only way I feel. It’s not a right or left thing to me. This is wrong. A U.S. president on foreign soil talking to our biggest enemy…is essentially letting the guy get away with this.
  • Trish Regan: This was clearly not his best performance… He should have defended us! He should have defended his own intelligence community.
  • General Jack Keane: What happened today is stunning and disappointing.
  • Brit Hume: Because Trump is unable to see past himself, he sees the Russia meddling investigation as only about him and the collusion claim, and thus calls it a witch hunt.
  • Shepard Smith: Shameful, disgraceful, treasonous. Three of the descriptions of what Trump did today in Helsinki.
  • John Roberts: There is a growing consensus tonight across this land that the President threw the United States under the bus.

And those are just the folks from Fox News. Republican politicians like John McCain, Jeff Flake, and Lindsey Graham weighed in as well. Even the Worm of – I mean the Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, distanced himself from the Trump train wreck. It’s no wonder that Trump chose Hannity for his post-summit interview, which was so lame it doesn’t even warrant a review. But it was probably just the sort of tongue bath that would restore Trump’s orange glow.

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

Donald Trump’s Own Words at the Treason Summit with Putin Are Dripping with His Guilt

The long-anticipated (well, not really that long) summit between Donald Trump and his boss, Vladimir Putin, is now history. And history will surely record this as one of the most troubling displays of subservience to a foreign enemy by an American president ever witnessed. Trump’s flagrant deference to Putin throughout the press avail following their suspiciously private tete-a-tete should horrify every American.

Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin

There is no better way to illustrate just how dangerous Trump’s Putin-worship is than by simply transcribing his own words. They reveal a man who is locked in the throes of advanced senile dementia. What follows are the verbatim responses to selected questions by our brazenly traitorous president as he cowers before the dictator he idolizes and embarrasses America before the entire world:

QUESTION: Mr. President, you tweeted this morning that it’s U.S. stupidity, foolishness, and the Mueller probe that is responsible for the decline in U.S. relations with Russia. Do you hold Russia at all accountable for anything in particular. And, if so, what would you consider that they are responsible for?
TRUMP: Yes I do. I hold both countries responsible. I think that the United States has been foolish. I think we’ve all been foolish. We should have had this dialog a long time ago. A long time, frankly, before I got to office. And I think that we’re all to blame. I think that the United States has now stepped forward, along with Russia. And we’re getting a chance to do some great things. Whether it’s nuclear proliferation, in terms of stopping. Have to do it. And ultimately that’s probably the most important thing we can be working on.

But I do feel that we have both made some mistakes. I think that the probe is a disaster for our country. I think it’s kept us apart. It’s kept us separated. There was no collusion at all. Everybody knows it. People are being brought out to the fore, so far as I know, virtually none of it related to the campaign. And they’re gonna have to try really hard to find somebody that did relate to the campaign. It was a clean campaign. I beat Hillary Clinton easily. And frankly, we beat her – and I’m not even saying from the standpoint – we won that race. And it’s a shame that there can be even a little bit of a cloud over it. People know that. They understand it. But the main thing we discussed also- zero collusion. And it has had a negative impact on the relationship of the largest nuclear powers in the world. We have ninety percent of nuclear power between the two countries. It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous what’s going on with the probe.

Notice that he didn’t answer the question as to what responsibility Russia has for the decline in U.S. relations. He’s putting all the blame on the U.S. Outside of a few vague references to “both” sides, every example is one that holds only America accountable. And then he wanders off into a defensive posture concerning his collusion with Russia during the 2016 election and the tainted victory he still can’t stop obsessing over.

QUESTION: Why should Americans and why should President Trump believe your statement that Russia did not intervene in the 2016 election? Do you have any evidence that U.S. intelligence agencies have provided? And would you consider extraditing the twelve Russian officials that were indicted last week by a U.S. grand jury?
TRUMP: Well I’m gonna let the President (Putin) answer the second part of that. But as you know, the whole concept came up, perhaps a little bit before, came out as a reason why the Democrats lost an election which, frankly, they should have been able to win because the electoral college is much more advantageous to Democrats, as you know, than it is to Republicans. We won the electoral college by a lot. 306 to 223, I believe. And that was a well fought battle. We did a great job.

And frankly, I’m gonna let the President speak to the second part of your question, but just to say it one time again, and I say it all the time, There was no collusion. I didn’t know the President. There was nobody to collude with. No collusion with the campaign. And every time you hear all of these – twelve and fourteen – it’s stuff that has nothing to do with – and frankly they admit that these are not people involved in the campaign. But to the average reader out there, they’re saying well maybe that does it doesn’t and even the people involved, some told mis-stories. And in one case the FBI said there was no lie. There was no lie. Somebody else says there was. We ran a brilliant campaign and that’s why I’m president.

Once again, without addressing the actual question, Trump is fixated on his election fetish as he hijacks a question directed at Putin. And he continues to try to absolve himself of his obviously guilty conscience with regard to colluding with Russia.

QUESTION: President Trump, just now President Putin denied having anything to do with election interference in 2016. Every U.S. intelligence agency has concluded that Russia did. My first question for you, sir, is who do you believe? My second question is, would you now, with the whole world watching, tell President Putin, would you denounce what happened in 2016, and would you warn him to never do it again?
TRUMP: Well, let me just say that we have two thoughts. We have groups that are wondering why the FBI never took the server. Why haven’t they taken the server? Why was the FBI told to leave the office of the Democratic National Committee? I’ve been wondering that. I’ve been asking that for a month. And I’ve been tweeting it out, and I’ve been calling it out on social media. Where is the server? I wanna know where is the server? And what is the server saying.

With that being said, all I can do is ask the question. My people came to me – (Director of National Intelligence) Dan Coats came to me and some others – they said they think it’s Russia. I have President Putin, he just said it’s not Russia. I will say this: I don’t see any reason why it would be. But I really do wanna see the server. But I have confidence in both parties. I really believe that this will probably go on for a while. But I don’t think it can go on without finding out what happened to the server. What happened to the servers of the Pakistani gentleman that worked on the DNC. Where are those servers? They’re missing. Where are they? What happened to Hillary Clinton’s emails? Thirty-three thousand emails gone, just gone. I think in Russia they wouldn’t be gone so easily. I think it’s a disgrace that we can’t get Hillary Clinton’s three thousand emails. I have great confidence in my intelligence people. But I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today.

In a stark diversion from the question, Trump veered off into an incoherent rant about the DNC server, a wholly imaginary controversy (you can find the truth about the server matters here and here). But more worrisome is Trump’s explicit renouncement of American intelligence. He very plainly took sides with Putin saying that, despite the unanimous conclusions of his own intel resources, he doesn’t “see any reason why it would be” Russia. His manic obsession with some nefarious servers is rooted in ludicrous conspiracy theories. And he still can’t let go of the non-issue of Clinton’s emails, which he says “in Russia they wouldn’t be gone so easily.” That’s more proof that he prefers the Russian model of tyranny to America’s democracy.

Trump goes on to say that he has “great confidence in my intelligence people,” but that that was overridden by his admiration and awe that “Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today.” Well, in that case we should all just let it go. Would Putin lie to us? And just before cutting off any further questions, Trump interjected a totally off-topic swing at Peter Strzok, who recently made the GOP inquisitioners in Congress look like rabid fools.

What we all witnessed in this press conference was the public Trump literally bending over for Vladimir Putin and choosing to trust our enemy more than our own intelligence professionals and patriots. Which has to make one wonder what happened behind the closed doors of the Treason Summit. And this is not just the opinion of partisan lefties determined to destroy Trump. Immediately following the press conference many conservative pundits and politicians spoke to the horror they just suffered through. They include: Neil Cavuto, Brit Hume, John Roberts, and Abby Huntsman of Fox News. And Republican senators Jeff Flake and Lindsay Graham Even Dick Cheney’s daughter, Rep. Liz Cheney. And to top it all off there is this exchange between the press and Putin that tells the whole story of collusion:

QUESTION: Did you want President Trump to win the election? And did you direct any of your officials to help him do that?
PUTIN: Yes, I did. Yes, I did. Because he talked about bringing the U.S.-Russia relationship back to normal.

Notice that Putin appears to have answered both parts of the question: his preference and his directions. And if that isn’t enough for the highly complicit congressional Republicans to finally get off their asses and remove Trump from office, than there is absolutely no hope left for their cursed souls.

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

Staunchly Pro-Trump Fox News Host Calls Him Out on His Lies: Mr. President, That’s Your Stink

It seems like every week is one that can arguably be described as Donald Trump’s worst week ever. And that surely applies to this week wherein the President had his lawyer go on Fox News and tell Sean Hannity that he reimbursed his personal attorney for the hush money paid to Stormy Daniels. And his pals at the National Enquirer went after Michael Cohen. And reports reveal the Cohen’s phone calls have been monitored by the Feds.

Fox News, Neil Cavuto, Stormy Daniels

Add to these setbacks a surprisingly critical monologue from Fox News host Neil Cavuto (video below). Cavuto has been one of the most reliable Trump supporters on the network. However, something must have clicked because this segment is bitingly harsh as he firmly renounces a cornucopia of Trump’s lies. The lecture addressed directly to Trump begins with Cavuto saying that:

“President Trump is fond of calling out the media on “fake” news. But is he the one giving them very real ammunition? Maybe not intentionally. I’ll even give you the benefit of the doubt, Mr. President, and say maybe not deliberately. But consistently. Way too consistently. So let me be clear Mr. President, how can you claim to be draining the swamp if you’re the one that keeps muddying the waters?”

Then Cavuto rattled off a series of Trump’s most recent and flagrant lies. He cites the hush money payment to Stormy Daniels; his denial of knowledge about MIchael Cohen’s activities on his behalf; his specious claims that there were no campaign finance violations. In each instance Cavuto noted that Trump stuck to his false claims until they could no longer be denied or his own party comrades debunked them.

Cavuto went on to itemize Trump’s catalog of obvious untruths such as claiming that the Russians didn’t interfere with the 2016 elections, and his subsequent denial that he ever made that claim; that his tax plan was the biggest ever; that those tax cuts would cost him a fortune; that his job approval numbers were better than his predecessors; that media reports that senior staffers (Secretary of State, Chief-of-Staff, economic advisor, political strategist, etc) were about to be fired were fake. Cavuto even brought up Trump’s denials that his lawyers (Dowd, Cobb) would be leaving, and that he denied ever considering firing Robert Mueller.

And even after that barrage of friendly fire Cavuto wasn’t done. He called Trump out for falsely saying that he signed more bills than any other president. And that he raised the national debt by over a trillion dollars despite claiming that he reduced it. And that there was massive voter fraud in New Hampshire and Virginia, and millions of illegal voters nationwide. And that his alleged electoral college landslide eclipsed those before him.

It was a brutal damning of Trump’s notorious dishonesty and aversion to the truth. Although Cavuto tried to to insert softening agents every now and then such as “Now I’m not saying you’re a liar,” and “None of this makes me a Never Trumper,” and “None of this makes you evil,” and “None of this makes what you say fake.” Why the heck not? Actually, all of that makes him a liar and what he says fake. But Cavuto can only go so far. And for him this is light years. He closed with an especially pungent censure of the President that would surely sting if his handlers ever let him hear it:

“Your base might not care, but you should. I guess you’re too busy draining the swamp to stop and smell the stink you’re creating. That’s your doing. That’s your stink. Mr. President, that’s your swamp.”

You have to wonder what happened in the editorial suites at Fox News that allowed this diatribe to make it onto the air. Perhaps there are people in the executive ranks who see the writing on the wall (which Trump will never build) and don’t want to get sunk along with the President when Mueller’s probe is completed. Fox News may be trying to hedge their bets a little in case the raid of Cohen’s offices turned up incriminating evidence. Whatever the reason, it appears that Trump might not be able to always depend on Fox News to cover his backside. Of course, this may be an anomaly, so it’s too soon to draw any conclusions. Stay tuned.

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

Devin Nunes To Fox News: Stephen Colbert is ‘The Danger That We Have in This Country’

The first year of Donald Trump’s presidency has seen innumerable crises develop domestically and throughout the world. There have been several shootings on school campuses. Our elections have been tampered with by Russia, and they’re still doing it. Trump is threatening nuclear war with North Korea. And his proposal to impose tariffs (mostly on our allies) sent the stock market into a tailspin.

Stephen Colbert & Trump Baby

So what does Devin Nunes, the Republican chairman of the House Select Intelligence Committee, consider to be one of the most serious hazards facing America? Well, of course, it’s late night television comedy, and specifically Stephen Colbert. Nunes was interviewed on Fox News by their resident Financial Distortion Anchor, Neil Cavuto (video below). The segment had nothing to do with the economy, but it did get to the bottom of the frightening assault on America by radical satirists. It began withe this probing exchange:

Cavuto: You mention that the media doesn’t present a fair case of [Trump/Russia]. Maybe the indication of that is that you’ve recently become the butt of late night comic jokes. Particularly Stephen Colbert was up on Capitol Hill. I think making you the butt of some jokes. What did you think of that? Did Colbert make any effort to talk to you?”
Nunes: Well, I think that this is the danger that we have in this country. The left controls not only the universities in this country, but they also control Hollywood in this country, and the mainstream media. So conservatives in this country are under attack and I think this is a great example of it.

Exactly. Stephen Colbert absolutely is “the danger” that America faces. And kudos to Cavuto for bringing up this looming peril. Where else but on Fox News could this travesty be exposed? Nunes points out that the reason the nation is undergoing such unprecedented turmoil is that leftists have seized control of the most powerful institutions in the country – universities and Hollywood – and are using them to enslave the minds of decent citizens. However, he doesn’t explain why these scurrilous lefties allowed Republicans to control the Congress, the Supreme Court, and the White House.

Also unexplained is how the special counsel, Robert Mueller, managed to get (so far) nineteen indictments and five guilty pleas connected to his investigation of Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia. But rest assured, somehow it’s the fault of universities, Hollywood, and Colbert. And Nunes isn’t taking it laying down. He doesn’t intend to be the butt of anyone’s joke, no matter how much he deserves it. In fact, he likes it:

Nunes: So I hope they continue to do it. Because on the one hand you’ll see the left and the media running out there saying “OMG, this is the end of the world. The Russians attacked our democracy. And we have evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.” However, they can’t show it. They have no proof […] they resort to going to their friends in Hollywood to make fun of people and attack people who are trying to get to the truth. I enjoy the attacks. If they want to continue to attack me, that’s fine.”

Well, we certainly wouldn’t want to disappoint him, would we? Although it’s puzzling that he says he enjoys it while simultaneously complaining that it’s an unfair attack and a danger to the country. Is he an unpatriotic masochist?

Nunes’ remarks were rife with allegations as to the identity of the real colluders – naturally, Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. And when Cavuto asked him about allegations that he was “doing the President’s bidding,” he curiously replied “I don’t know.” Then quickly stammering to add “I mean, we don’t get any orders from the White House.” Which makes perfect sense. They are probably coming from Mar-A-Lago, where the President spends most of his time.

Nunes went on to praise his committee’s work and insisted that he “follows the facts where they lead.” So long as they lead to Clinton and the Democrats. He refused to allow his Democratic committee colleagues to call witnesses. And he wouldn’t hold White House witnesses accountable when they refused to answer questions. Nunes falsely claimed that “no one would know … that Fusion GPS was paid by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party’ but for his efforts. In fact, it was reported by the (fake?) media long before he ever got around to it.

Once again, Fox News uncovers the atrocities in Washington that are neglected by the “mainstream” media (which, for some reason doesn’t include Fox News). And heroes like Devin Nunes are permitted time to inform the American people about what is really going on in this gawd-awful country. With journalism like this we will hopefully soon be rid of fake reporters like Colbert who are working tirelessly to destroy America.

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

Here is the Fox News segment with Cavuto and Nunes:

And here is video of Colbert’s trip to Washington, D.C.:

Christine Pelosi Is Getting Death Threats For Seeking Info On Russia’s Hacking – Fox News Berates Her For It

There is a surprisingly effective effort in progress to inform the Electoral College about the Russian hacking of the election. Ever since the Washington Post reported the CIA’s conclusion that “Russia intervened in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win the presidency,” electors have been reconsidering how they might vote on December 19. It’s taken on a life of its own online with the hashtag #InformTheElectors

Cavuto Pelosi

One of those electors is Christine Pelosi, a long time activist and daughter of the Democratic leader in House, Nancy Pelosi. She appeared Tuesday on Fox News with Neil Cavuto who berated her for seeking information. Right from the start Cavuto maligned the CIA with the GOP talking point that they are the same people who said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Pelosi corrected him saying that it was the Bush/Cheney administration who pushed that, not the CIA.

Cavuto continued his harangue in an attempt to paint Pelosi as a partisan who is trying to hurt Donald Trump. She repeatedly informs him that all she is asking is for the information to be made available so the electors can make an informed decision. Cavuto seemed oblivious to her response and shot back:

Cavuto: “You are trying to get electors who are heretofore bound to the Republican candidate in Republican states to switch their allegiance.”

Pelosi: “Don’t put words in my mouth. You owe it to the American people to let me tell the truth and to not lie about what I just said.”

Not satisfied, Cavuto hauled off again with the same question, all the while talking over Pelosi and not allowing her to give a complete answer:

Cavuto: “Do you want them to switch their votes? Yes or no.”

Pelosi: “What I want to do is get the information. What I want to do is not to have you mischaracterize what I say so that I get even more death threats and more insults.”

Cavuto had no sympathy for the danger that Pelosi has encountered specifically due to people like him lying about her. He even tried to waive it off with talk about “threats” that he’s received. As if that made her suffering alright.

Throughout the onslaught, Pelosi more than held her own. She continued to drive home the point that she was not prejudging the contents of the intelligence data. It would be up to the electors to decide for themselves whether it was significant enough to change their vote. But she was adamant that the information be available. And when he couldn’t succeed in getting to Pelosi to cower to his bullying, he resorted to a hackneyed bit of fact-mangling about the election results:

Cavuto: “When you include all the candidates, more people voted against Hillary Clinton than voted for her.”

That’s true. However, when you include all the candidates, even more people voted against Trump than voted for him or against Clinton. So what exactly was his point? That’s the sort of dishonest spin that is typical of Cavuto and Fox News. And you can bet that Cavuto won’t be inviting Pelosi back on in the near future.

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

Watch parts 1 and 2 of the Fox News segments here:


Fox News Falsely Reports That Clinton Aide “Stormed” Out Of FBI Interview

With the market for manufactured scandals losing steam, Fox News is getting desperate for new avenues of attack against Hillary Clinton. Their already in progress effort to impeach her has been going nowhere. Trey Gowdy’s House Committee To Politicize Benghazi has wasted millions of dollars, and untold hours, but found nothing incriminating against Clinton. The accusers of Planned Parenthood have themselves been indicted. And the never-ending investigations into Clinton’s email server was recently declared to have uncovered “scant evidence” of any wrongdoing. So what will Fox News do now?

Fox News

Not to worry. Fox News will do what they always do: Invent some new controversy that they can hash around for a couple of days before everyone realizes that there’s nothing to it, and then pretend it never happened. In that spirit Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteran introduced a segment (video below) that alleged that one of Clinton’s trusted confidants was an uncooperative witness during an FBI interview about Clinton’s email.

“Long-time Clinton aide Cheryl Mills reportedly storming out of the interview over an off-limits topic,” was how Van Susteran opened the segment. The story was picked up by Fox News correspondent Catherine Herridge who got it from the Washington Post. Herridge’s lede was that this was…

“…a discussion of her conversations with Mrs. Clinton over which emails would be produced to the state department as part of the FOIA [Freedom of Information Act] request. […] This was negotiated to be off-limits because of attorney-client privilege.”

Van Susteren, an attorney before she joined Fox News, responded with a surprisingly coherent comment that should have put the matter to bed. She said “That actually would be routine that that would be off-limits, so it’s nothing surprising.” However, neither of them recanted the characterization of Mills as having stomped off in huff.

For some context, the Washington Post article that was the source of this story had an entirely different tone. For starters, their headline said only that “Clinton aide Cheryl Mills leaves FBI interview briefly after being asked about emails.” There was nothing in the article about anyone “storming” out. That was a rhetorical invention by Fox News. To the contrary, it was portrayed as a normal practice during such interviews when witnesses need to confer privately with their lawyers. In fact, it was the FBI investigator who was considered to have overstepped his boundaries:

“[A]n FBI investigator broached a topic with longtime Hillary Clinton aide Cheryl Mills that her lawyer and the Justice Department had agreed would be off limits, according to several people familiar with the matter.

“Mills and her lawyer left the room — though both returned a short time later — and prosecutors were somewhat taken aback that their FBI colleague had ventured beyond what was anticipated, the people said.”

This afternoon on Fox’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto” the subject was brought up again with Fox legal analyst Andrew Napolitano telling Cavuto that a “courageous” FBI agent asked questions that all parties previously agreed would be improper. He praised the FBI agent for violating the “baloney” agreement to honor attorney/client privilege.

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

So Fox News took a rather uneventful account of the FBI meeting with Mills and transformed it into a fictional battle between valiant FBI heroes and a shady Clinton crony. Admittedly, that’s a more exciting narrative than what really happened, but it’s also patently untrue. But considering the dearth of any legitimate mud that Fox has to fling at Clinton, it’s understandable that they are resorting to these desperate measures. Expect more of the same for the next five months.

Prawn Of The Dead: Return Of The Fox News ‘Shrimp On A Treadmill’ Sham

The scandal mongers at Fox News must be getting bored with Donald Trump’s bitching about how the GOP is conspiring against him and their utter failure to convince anyone that Hillary Clinton should be thrown in jail. The desperation is visible in their latest recycling of an ancient story that was a core part of their propaganda back in 2011.

The venerable tale of the “Shrimp on a Treadmill” was an audience favorite for the Fox cultists. It had all the components of classic rightist mythology: It portrayed government as wasteful and stupid; it elevated Republican whiners in Congress; it disparaged scientists as greedy perpetrators of hoaxes; and most importantly, it was completely made up. There was literally no truth to the story at all.

This morning on Fox News the Scampi-Scam was resurrected in conjunction with a story about the release of the annual “Pig Book,” a publication from Citizens Against Government Waste that details what they allege are unnecessary government expenditures. Perhaps their report should include the millions of dollars in unnecessary government expenditures on useless and spiteful shutdowns, dozens of fruitless, partisan hearings on Benghazi, and fifty-plus futile attempts to repeal ObamaCare. Fox’s Eric Shawn introduced the today’s segment saying…

“So last year we had the famous shrimp on the treadmill study. There it goes. There goes the little guy. This thing costs over a number of years three million dollars, they say, in taxpayer money. And this absurdity, I mean, continues now?”

Even this many years after the story had been debunked, Fox News is still propagating the lie that it cost millions of dollars. News Corpse documented this journalistic malpractice back in 2014 in an article that include the account of the professor responsible for the experiment. This seems like a good time to reprise that article. So here it is in full:



Back in May of 2011, Fox News assigned its crack investigative reporting team to expose a case of government malfeasance on a grand scale. They claimed to have uncovered wasteful spending on scientific research that served no purpose other than to line the pockets of academics engaged in questionable studies. At the top of the list was a now infamous project that involved the absurd but adorable image of a “shrimp on a treadmill.”

Fox News Shrimp Treadmill

This story became emblematic of government’s incompetence and inability to exercise fiscal restraint. Fox News took it up in big way with hundreds of segments featuring the by now exhausted little sea creature. It was featured on nearly every Fox program with Neil Cavuto playing a prominent role in hyping it with a hefty dose of smugly delivered disgust.

Well, if you haven’t guessed yet, it turns out that this is just another fraudulent invention of the myth spinners at Fox News. David Scholnick is the professor of marine biology at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon, where the notorious research was conducted. Earlier this week he published an article for the Chronicle of Higher Education that laid out for the umpteenth time what was actually being studied and the true costs involved.

On behalf of the National Science Foundation, Scholnick developed a project to ascertain “how recent changes in the oceans could potentially affect the ability of marine organisms to fight infections.” He justified the study by linking it to the very real risk of bacteria contamination to the food supply. But more to the point, he adamantly denied the accusations of any fiscal improprieties.

“Exactly how much taxpayer money did go into the now-famous shrimp treadmill? The treadmill was, in fact, made from spare parts—an old truck inner tube was used for the tread, the bearings were borrowed from a skateboard, and a used pump motor was salvaged to power the treadmill. The total price for the highly publicized icon of wasteful government research spending? Less than $50. (All of which I paid for out of my own pocket.)”

The truth is that the $3 million dollars attributed to the study was actually an aggregate sum that was used for a variety of NSF projects. It was not the amount spent on the shrimp experiment. And there is no evidence that any of the funds were misused or were not justifiable from a research perspective.

However, given the attitude of Fox News and conservative politicians toward science, it is not surprising to find them falsely accusing scientists of malfeasance. The wingnut community staunchly denies the existence of man-made climate change, evolution, and even the harmful effects of excessive sugar, salt, and tobacco. It’s only a matter of time before they begin to challenge the “theory” of gravity.

At the end of his article Scholnick takes a well deserved swipe at his right-wing critics by offering to sell his shrimp-sized NordicTrack for the bargain price of $1 million – a 67% discount on the bogusly reported cost. That’s the sort of special only found during the Black Friday sales after Thanksgiving. Some lucky buyer is going to get endless hours of satisfaction and be the envy of his friends and neighbors.

Stay tuned for the Fox News correction of their erroneous reporting, which I’m sure they will be broadcasting just as soon as they are finished spewing lies about Benghazi, IRS emails, executive amnesty, ObamaCare, the Keystone XL pipeline, voter fraud, Ebola, trickle-down economics, and – oh never mind. It may be better not to stay tuned after all.

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

Tea And Trumpets: How Fox News Covers Protesters Depends On Who They Are Protesting

Watching the noxious campaign of Donald Trump continue to devolve into ever deeper levels of assholery is becoming a greater challenge with every passing day. His embrace of hostile rhetoric and refusal to convincingly condemn the aggression of his minions is leading to easily predictable episodes of chaos and violence. There is a reason that he is the only candidate that is suffering these problems.

Donald Trump

Trump’s accomplice in this spread of acrimony is, not surprisingly, Fox News. The reports of the protests by Fox are characteristically unfair and acutely unbalanced. They rarely acknowledge that Trump is the instigator of the rancor that his followers have gleefully adopted. In fact, more often than not Fox portrays the protesters has initiating the violence. Never mind that there is no evidence whatsoever of that ever happening. What exactly did the folks at Fox think would happen when Trump told his followers that he would pay their legal fees if they were arrested for assaulting a protester? What did they think Trump was trying to convey when he said this:

“Part of the problem and part of the reason it takes so long is nobody wants to hurt each other anymore, right? […] There used to be consequences. There are none anymore.”

And this:

“I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They’d be carried out on a stretcher, folks. It’s true. … I’d like to punch him in the face, I’ll tell you.”

And that only scratches the surface (here are a bunch more). Trump could not be making it any clearer that he’s fond of the idea of physical altercations and that if you support him, you should be too. This is coming from someone who is now trying to pass himself off as a unifier. Before he can plausibly claim to being able to unite his party, or the country, or to make all the amazing deals he boasts about, shouldn’t he be able to settle his differences with these protesters? How on Earth would he ever be able to bring peace to the Middle East if he can’t bring it to Chicago?

It is in this environment that Fox News offers up perverse tales of peaceful demonstrators inviting the attacks that are waged on them. The Fox spin is that they are all engaged in a secret conspiracy to destroy the Trump Crusade by getting themselves beat up and arrested. Fox is actually theorizing that there is a plot afoot that is backed by evil and powerful puppet masters of the left. For instance, Fox anchor Doug McKelway prefaced a question to a guest this morning with this brazen bias:

“There have been suggestions that MoveOn.org is behind a lot of this orchestrated violence.”

First of all, there have been no suggestions of the sort by anyone but McKelway’s bosses at Fox News. Secondly, the baseless charge of “orchestrated violence” is posed falsely by Fox as if it were a matter of fact. Not only is it not factual, it’s a blatant lie that Fox deliberately inserted into the debate. The only thing here that is orchestrated is Fox’s defamation of the protesters.

As another example of their well-coordinated talking points, anchor Neil Cavuto implied, with no evidence, that Media Matters and George Soros were responsible for the Chicago protests. His guest, former GE CEO Jack Welch, added Bill Ayres and MoveOn to the mix of lefty conspirators. Then Welch said that “If we’re gonna have riots, we ought to have riots aimed at what Bernie Sanders has to say about tearing our country down.” To which Cavuto replied “Yeah, you’re right.”

So Fox is not attempting to calm down the rhetoric at all, Instead, they are trying to sustain it, but shift the victims to the side that they don’t like. This is Fox’s way of telling their viewers to show up at a Sanders rally and start a riot. Note that Welch’s assertion that there have been riots already is utterly false, but that didn’t stop him from expressing his desire to starting some. Note also that the candidate that is most often tearing our country down is Donald Trump, who frequently says that the American dream is dead, and that America is a Hell hole, and that all of our leaders are stupid losers, and that the economy is a bubble that is about to burst, etc., etc.

It wasn’t long ago that Fox News considered protesters to be noble defenders of patriotism. Whenever there was a Tea Party rally, Fox was there to celebrate them as civic minded citizens who were fighting to restore their twisted version of the Constitution. The Tea Party was hailed as champions of freedom, despite the fact that they were actually a creation of the billionaire Koch brothers, with help from Fox News. And when they crashed public meetings by shouting down anyone with whom they disagreed, Fox cheered and brought them into the studio the next day for a slobbering interview.

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

So here’s the difference in how Fox News will cover protesters. If you’re wearing a tri-corner hat and carrying a Gadsden flag, Fox will devote countless hours of airtime to glorifying your efforts on behalf of God and country, even if you illegally seize government property and threaten to shoot law enforcement officers (i.e. the Bundy Klan). But if you deign to Occupy Wall Street or demonstrate against a bigoted, orange-haired narcissist with designs on an American dictatorship, Fox will smear you as a subversive who wants to turn America over to ISIS. And don’t forget, free speech is a right that is only available to ultra-rightists and conservative blowhards. It does not extend to people opposed to them. And if you attempt to exercise it you will be subject to slander and defamation by Fox News.

Really? Fox News Thinks Rachel Maddow Is Too Biased To Moderate A Debate

Howard Kurtz, host of MediaBuzz on Fox News, wrote a column today that might have consumed the world’s supply of chutzpah. In the column Kurtz took MSNBC to task for having the audacity to let their biggest star, Rachel Maddow, co-moderate a Democratic debate. Of course, that’s something that Fox has done itself with their hot property, Megyn Kelly, but never mind that. Kurtz is very upset.

Megyn Kelly

The headline of the article asked this pressing question: “Why did MSNBC put Rachel Maddow on the debate stage?” The question was apparently so easy to answer that Kurtz managed to handle it all by himself.

Kurtz: Rachel Maddow did a pretty good job in questioning Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders at MSNBC’s Democratic debate last night. (…) She is smart and passionate, a Rhodes scholar with a deep knowledge of the issues. She did not roll over for Clinton during a recent interview on her prime-time show.

Well, with a track record like that she should never be allowed anywhere near a candidate debate. The last thing Fox would want is a smart, knowledgeable, fair person to facilitate a political discussion. That certainly isn’t the way they do it. Fox has taken great pains to make sure that all of their presenters are cut from the same moldy conservative cloth. And yet, Kurtz can still pose this scenario as if it weren’t utterly oblivious to reality:

“Imagine the reaction on the left if the Fox News moderators at a debate were Bret Baier and Sean Hannity, an unabashed conservative. The criticism of Fox for fielding such a team would have been intense.”

Of course, the truth is that Fox’s moderators are unabashed conservatives, which I’ll get to in a moment. But first it is important to note that Kurtz couldn’t simply praise for Maddow without qualifying it by insisting that, despite her evident skills “she shouldn’t have been on that stage as a moderator,” and that “she should not have been put in that position,” because “she is an unabashedly liberal commentator who rips the Republicans every night on her program.”

If that is their criteria for choosing debate moderators then Fox has some explaining to do. Their own debate moderators have included relentless liberal bashers like Megyn Kelly, one of the most stridently partisan purveyors of propaganda on the Republican PR channel (aka Fox News). She spreads more lies about Benghazi than any of her Fox colleagues (and that’s saying something). She was caught leading a discussion that was based on a series of “Fox Facts” that were cribbed directly from a Republican National Committee press release. She made a point of informing her viewers that it was a fact that both Jesus and Santa Claus were white.

Media Matters did a survey a couple of years back that showed that Kelly “has hosted conservatives (56%) significantly more often than progressives (18%) and has surpassed even Fox’s Hannity in its divide between guests on the left and right.” That’s the same Hannity that Kurtz used in his imaginary scenario about unabashed conservatives. And in March she will host her third debate on Fox News.

Also moderating for Fox was Neil Cavuto, the Glenn Beck of business news. His first question in the debate he moderated asked the candidates which of their economic plans God would endorse. He has made it his mission to castigate low-income Americans as sponges and leeches who are actually living the good life at the expense of the one-percent. He is a committed climate-change denier. And he frequently has segments about alleged government waste that usually turns out to be completely bogus (like this on about the famous shrimp on a treadmill).

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

With blatantly biased moderators like this on Fox, Kurtz has the gall to complain about Maddow, even as he admits that she has all the qualifications for a moderator and that she acquitted herself well. What more does he want? His complaint obviously doesn’t have anything to do with Maddow’s ability to perform with proficiency and fairness, so the only thing left to explain why he would devote a column to this whining is his own bias and partisanship. Or perhaps he was ordered to do it by his boss, Roger Ailes, as a slap at Megyn Kelly’s time period competition. Expect to see more of this Maddow bashing on his Sunday morning program.