Trump Calls the Media ‘Our Country’s Biggest Enemy’ – But America Trusts the Media More

This is getting monotonous. Once again Donald Trump has lashed out at the free press and exhibited his utter contempt for the Constitution. In a Wednesday afternoon tweet the President made his position clear – again – about what he regards as the “biggest enemy” of the country. And it isn’t murderous dictators like Kim Jong Un or Vladimir Putin.

Donald Trump

The tweet that Trump posted was a response to his critics who correctly pointed out that his meeting with Kim produced nothing for the United States, but gave Kim everything he hoped for. Kim was able to stand next to the leader of the free world as an equal with the international diplomatic legitimacy that he craved. He got Trump to call off military exercises with South Korea, leaving us, as well as our allies, unprepared for whatever potential risks exist in the region. Trump even promised to remove the sanctions on North Korea before any action to denuclearize on Kim’s part.

The United States, however, got nothing but empty promises from a known liar – or liars (Kim and Trump). And Trump slammed unnamed (nonexistent) critics who he said “would have ‘begged’ for this deal-looked like war would break out.” But the only threat of war came from Trump himself. And now that he’s cozying up to Kim he wants credit for ending the crisis he manufactured. The tweet said:

The most troubling part of that deranged outburst is that Trump is repeating a dangerously anti-American rant that he has embraced for months. By calling CNN and NBC the biggest of America’s enemies he’s proving that he doesn’t understand foreign affairs or the risk scenarios that this country faces. He is completely wrapped up in his ego-bubble that informs him that only criticism of him is an actual threat. That could end up being a tragic mistake for the welfare of the nation.

Setting aside how delusional and perilous Trump’s paranoid fantasies are, they are also contradicted by hard data. A new poll by Public Policy Polling shows that the media that Trump detests so much is held in much higher esteem by the American people. The survey asked voters who they trust more, Trump or a variety of news enterprises. Here is a summary of who is more trusted:

  • CNN: 53% / Trump: 38%
  • NBC: 53% / Trump: 39%
  • ABC: 53% / Trump: 39%
  • CBS: 53% / Trump: 39%
  • New York Times: 52% / Trump: 38%
  • Washington Post: 51% / Trump: 38%
  • Fox News: 32% / Trump: 26%
  • Media: 48% / Sarah Huckabee Sanders: 35%

The trust of the media is pretty constant no matter the source. It’s a clear majority in the low fifties. The lack of trust for Trump is also consistently dismal in the upper thirties. Even poor Sarah Sanders is regarded as less credible than the media she lies to on a daily basis. The one anomaly in the group is Fox News. That’s likely because the survey respondents couldn’t decide who they trust most or least because they couldn’t tell the two apart. But even Fox News media correspondent Howard Kurtz says Trump’s media bashing has gone too far.

There was plenty of other bad news for Trump in this survey. For instance, Democratic voters are more excited about the upcoming election than Republicans. And voters overall prefer Democrats to the GOP. Trump’s approval still can’t crack forty percent. He’s considered dishonest, a liar, mentally unbalanced, in cahoots with Russia, and that he hasn’t made America great again.

The people think Trump should resign if proof emerges that he was working with Russia. They don’t want him to fire special counsel Robert Mueller or pardon himself. A plurality believe he should be impeached. And by wide margins people want a DACA bill passed, but do not want a wall along the Mexican border. His views on gun reforms are rejected by most Americans. And every Democrat posed as a 2020 challenger defeats him.

Other than that it’s clear sailing for Trump. And these results come after two years of endless bashing of Democrats and progressive policies by the President on Twitter and his State TV colleagues on Fox News. No wonder Trump thinks the biggest enemy is the media. Because it’s his enemy. Not because it’s biased against him. But because anything that might reveal more of his deceit and corruption is going to anger him. And that’s the only thing he cares about. And it’s also something that he has no control over, which only exacerbates his rage.

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

Trump’s GOP: A Majority Embrace His Stalinist Rant that ‘the Media is the Enemy of the People’

There are innumerable ways in which Donald Trump has damaged the United States during the last fifteen tumultuous months. Even setting aside his unsavory connections to Russia and his role in helping them subvert our democracy, Trump’s negative impact is historically catastrophic. It’s ironic that he repeatedly brags that he has done more in his first year than any other president. Because he’s right, although not in the way his narcissistic dementia leads him to believe.

Donald Trump GOP

Trump has brazenly ignored long-standing principles for financial conflicts of interest. He has terminated regulations that protect citizens from environmental harm, consumer abuse, healthcare, and workplace safety. He has promoted discrimination against vulnerable communities encompassing race, gender, sexual orientation, and religion. He has recklessly dangled the prospect of war with nuclear powers like Iran and North Korea. He has violated laws associated with ethical governing and has been frequently repudiated by the federal courts. And he has generally lowered the standards for civil discourse with his infantile name-calling, insulting, bullying, slandering, and outright lying.

But nowhere in this morass of corruption and immorality has Trump been more destructive than with his hostility to the free press and the First Amendment. He has made attacking the media a core component of his march to authoritarian rule. His cries of “fake news” whenever any journalist dares to report facts that he doesn’t like ring out across the landscape of the deplorable disciples that he cultivates. And it’s having an overtly dangerous effect on the national political environment.

A new poll by Quinnipiac asked voters this question: “Which comes closer to your point of view: the news media is the enemy of the people, or the news media is an important part of democracy?” The response by all respondents shows that a majority consider the media to be “an important part of democracy” (66 -22 percent). And while that 44 point difference is significant, it’s still frighteningly low. But it was brought down by one particular group of respondents. A majority of Republicans (51%) said that the media is “the enemy of the people.” No other demographic sector came anywhere close to that.

The phrasing of the question was clearly designed to elicit support or opposition to Trump’s infamous disparagement of the press. He has frequently called the media “the enemy of the people” in his rallies and public statements. It’s a concept he borrowed from dictators like Joseph Stalin. But the fact that it has caught on with so many Republican voters is more than a little disturbing. It indicates that Trump is successfully infecting a segment of the population with an ideology that is flagrantly anti-American. And worse – it’s pro-totalitarian dictatorship.

Fortunately, other results from the survey are more comforting:

  • Voters trust the media more than Trump to tell the truth about important issues: 53 – 37 percent.
  • The vast majority of voters say that Trump should not fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller: 74 – 13 percent (including 59 – 25 percent among Republicans).
  • More people believe James Comey than Trump: 54 – 35 percent.
  • More voters believe that the Russian government has compromising information about President Trump: 53 – 35 percent.
  • American voters disapprove of the job Scott Pruitt is doing as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency: 52 – 25 percent.

Still, that doesn’t absolve the Republican Party from embracing a despicable philosophy that denigrates the press and disrespects the Constitution. If they have problems with the media they should seek to reform and/or improve it, while still cherishing its ideals. Their position that it’s an opponent of democracy casts it as something that needs to be defeated and done away with. And that makes them the real foes of democracy.

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

Mueller Will Find that Trump Committed Criminal or Impeachable Offenses Says – a Fox News Poll?

Donald Trump has turned his seething hostility for the media into a familiar chant that anything critical of him is “fake news.” Simultaneously, he has relentlessly hyped his pals at State-Run TV (aka Fox News). One of the best examples of that was seen Thursday morning when Trump called in to Fox and Friends for a half hour of tongue bathing.

Fox News Trump

However, it will be hard for Trump to dismiss the results of a new poll that puts him in a decidedly negative light. Otherwise known in the rest of the media as a realistic assessment of his floundering presidency. The new poll is by Fox News, and it has very little for which Trump can supply his usual narcissistic boasting.

To begin with, Trump’s approval rating is a pitiful forty-four percent. That’s down a point from last month’s poll. Likewise, his disapproval rose a point to fifty-three percent. He’s underwater on specific issues like Immigration, Syria, and Russia. And he’s treading water on the economy and North Korea. More specifically on the economy, survey results say that fifty-seven percent of voters say that Trump’s economic policies only help “people with more money.”

With regard to Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia, several question were asked that don’t bode well for the President. For instance, A majority of fifty-one percent say that Trump has not been tough enough on Russia. A plurality of forty-nine percent say that it’s extremely or very important that special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Trump’s alleged collusion with Russia should continue. Only twenty-nine percent say that it should not. Fifty-six percent say that it is at least somewhat likely that Mueller’s investigation will find that Donald Trump committed criminal or impeachable offenses. More worrisome is that seventy-one percent think Trump will fire Mueller before the investigation is complete. It’s clear the American people are concerned that Trump might interfere with an investigation that they believe will show Trump to be a criminal.

Finally, many Trump supporters are fond of defending his belligerence, his disrespect for the institutions of government and the media, his infantile insults and divisiveness, his brazen and repeated lying, as just the consequences of an outsider whose mission is to turn Washington upside down and “drain the swamp.” However, on the question as to whether the disruption Trump brought to Washington is a good or bad thing, a plurality of forty-six percent said that it’s bad.

Trump’s practice under these circumstances is to ignore any news that falls short of fawning adoration. So even though this poll was produced by the only news network he respects, he will certainly pretend that it doesn’t exist. Just as he has ignored the latest results of his favorite pollster, Rasmussen. Ten days ago Trump tweeted proudly that he had cracked fifty-one percent. Since then he has dropped to forty-seven percent. And that’s still higher than the consensus numbers complied by RealClear Politics, which show an average approval of 41.8 percent.

Expect these numbers to decline further as Trump continues to embarrass himself with more public meltdowns. And expect him to ignore those declines, except to get even more frantic and unhinged as he realizes the walls are closing in around him.

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

It’s Tax Day and Donald Trump is Tweeting Up a Storm to Celebrate, But…

Never one to care anything about facts or truthful dialogue, Donald Trump is attacking the arrival of Tax Day with a celebratory zeal that is entirely out of whack with reality. So what else is new?

Donald Trump

Trump’s day always begins with his most pressing presidential duty: post nonsense and/or rage on Twitter. This Tuesday morning is no different. So here is what the Tweeter-in-Chief is obsessing over while waiting for his tee time in Palm Beach:

Indeed, everybody is talking. Unfortunately for Trump, they are mostly saying that his tax scam bill isn’t helping to do anything but blow up the federal deficit. A poll by NBC and the Wall Street Journal show that a pitiful twenty-seven percent think Trump’s tax bill is a good idea. Another poll by Gallup puts those who disapprove in the majority at fifty-two percent. And an analysis by Bloomberg shows that Republicans are going to find it difficult to run on the tax issue in the 2018 midterms.

So happy tax day everybody. We may have a bill that is only benefiting the wealthy, but it is also likely to throw the members of Congress who forced it on us out on their asses.

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

Untruthful Slime Ball: New Poll Shows Americans Say Trump is Less Believable Than Comey

The new book by former FBI Director James Comey is about to be released and details are being discussed in the press. The book, A Higher Loyalty,” is sure to create a stir as excerpts reveal Donald Trump to be, as Comey says, “unethical, and untethered to truth.” While anyone paying attention the last of couple years already knows this, saying so publicly about a sitting president is unprecedented, especially coming from such a high government official.

Donald Trump, James Comey

It was a foregone conclusion that Trump would be unable to refrain from reacting to Comey’s book. Furthermore, it was easy to predict that his reaction would be hostile, childish, and devoid of any factual basis. And Trump did not disappoint. On Friday morning he commenced his presidential duties by logging in to Twitter and posting some typically asinine attacks on Comey:

Being called a liar by Trump is like being called ignorant by – well, that’d be Trump too. The pissed off president is accusing Comey of serious crimes, which is not only false, but improper for an alleged commander-in-chief. He is prejudicing any potential jury pool with his blatantly biased opinion and personal animus.

However, what really sticks out like a sore, infected, and gangrenous thumb is Trump’s colorful assertion that Comey is an “untruthful slime ball.” He is clearly projecting a character flaw that he sees in himself. And he isn’t the only one who sees that. A new poll by ABC News/Washington Post asked “Who are you more likely to believe, Comey or Trump?” The results may cause Trump’s Diet Pepsi infused blood to go flat. According to the poll:

“Americans by a 16-point margin, 48-32 percent, find Comey more believable than Trump.”

These numbers are similar to previous polls that asked the same question. Last June an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found that by a 2-to-1 margin (45% to 22%), Americans said they are more likely to believe Comey than Trump. And just in case Trump dismisses these polls as being “fake” news, other polls show that voters also trust the media far more than they trust Trump.

Those saying that they believe Trump more represent his hard-core base that worship him as their cult leader. They don’t care if he’s lying, if he cheats on his spouse(s), if he breaks the law, or if he shoots someone on Fifth Avenue. Their messiah can do no wrong. Fortunately, the rest of America doesn’t agree. The ABC/WaPo poll asked about other matters related to investigations of Trump’s unsavory activities. By “yuge” majorities the public supports those inquiries and the work that special counsel Robert Mueller is doing:

“The public by a broad 69-25 percent supports Mueller’s initial thrust, to investigate possible collusion between Trump campaign officials and Russian government attempts to influence the 2016 election. Support extends to half of conservatives and more than four in 10 Republicans.

“Backing for Mueller’s work goes further: Americans by 2-1, 64-32 percent, also support his investigating Trump’s business activities. And by 58-35 percent, a 23-point margin, they support investigators’ latest apparent direction, looking at allegations that Trump’s associates paid hush money to women who say they had affairs with him.”

Trump ought to be more careful when calling other people slime balls. The mud he is throwing invariably splashes back on him. And he ends up dirtier than those he seeks to tarnish. It’s a familiar pattern that we can expect to see repeated as Trump’s problems exacerbate. He will predictably lash out with greater ferocity the closer Mueller gets to releasing his findings. Let’s hope that he can be constrained before he does anything even more stupid and destructive to our nation than what he’s done so far.

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

In Defense of Fox News (?): Trust in Media Graphic Was Early, Not Censored

There is no question that Fox News is the most brazenly biased right-wing distorter of reality that has even been broadcast. It’s executives, hosts, and contributors are almost entirely devoted to disseminating conservative propaganda, much of it dictated by Donald Trump’s White House. Even worse, Trump’s positions are often dictated by Fox News.

Fox News Lies

That said, there has been a story circulating around the InterTubes that is just plain wrong. It asserts that Howard Kurtz, host of Fox’s MediaBuzz, was surprised by a graphic that showed Fox News as being the least trusted cable news network, and that he called for it to taken down in order to suppress that anti-Fox information. There is a lot wrong with that assertion.

First of all, there was a graphic that appeared during Kurtz’s program that was out of place. Kurtz did ask that it be taken down. But that’s only because it was out of sequence. When that part of the discussion came up a couple of minutes later, he showed that graphic again at the proper time. There was no attempt to censor it. (See video below).

Also, the argument that this graphic was taken down because it showed Fox News as trusted less than MSNBC and CNN is not accurate. The Monmouth University survey that was the basis for the graphic’s data did not compare the networks’ trustworthiness. It compared whether respondents trusted Trump or the media more. That’s actually worse from Trump’s perspective. Although that misreading is largely the fault of Fox News. The graphic needs to be read left to right, not top down. By highlighting the column instead of the rows Fox invited the misinterpretations. As News Corpse previously wrote about this poll:

“Like other polls before it, Monmouth found that Americans trust the media more than they do Donald Trump. That’s gotta sting the President who has been striving furiously to turn the nation against the press. The detail shows that 48 percent of Americans trust CNN more than Trump (35% trust Trump more). Forty-five percent trust MSNBC more than Trump (32% for Trump). Even 30 percent trust Fox News more than Trump (20% for Trump). Although the Fox numbers also show that a plurality of 37 percent trust both equally. This affirms that Trump’s base is still immovably stuck in the low thirties.”

The original story asserting that Fox News was embarrassed by an errant graphic and deep-sixed it appears to have been published by the Associated Press. They have since corrected their story. But it’s important that the record be correct in the progressive media so as to preserve our moral claim to being reality-based. There are more than enough legitimate examples of Fox News lying. And the findings in the poll are bad enough for Trump that they don’t need to be muddied up with misunderstandings.

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

Sucks To Be Trump: More Americans Trust the ‘Fake’ News than the President

It’s always easy to tell when Donald Trump is frightened by the political and legal perils he encounters. His first reaction is predictably to grab his phone and tweet out incoherent rants. They might be about issues he incompetently tries to advance, or about people he perceives as enemies. But often it’s about the media that he despises for doing their job.

Donald Trump

Most of the time Trump disparages the free press in a transparent attempt to inoculate himself from criticism. It’s a pathetic spectacle that everyone can see through, but worse, it’s anti-democratic. Sometimes he goes on the attack just to convince himself that he is loved by the American people, despite reality. On Tuesday morning Trump did the latter with a tweet lauding his alleged popularity:

Let’s just set aside the baseless and deranged “Cheatin’ Obama” crap (who cheats more than Trump? Ask any of his three wives) and focus on the substance. Rasmussen is one of the most egregiously biased pollsters, well known for skewing their results to favor Republicans and conservatives. So Trump’s numbers in this poll are unreliable and far outside the range of every other pollster. The RealClear Politics average for Trump currently shows an approval of 41.8 percent, disapproval 53.2 percent. That negative 11.4 percent gap averages the latest twelve surveys. Rasmussen is the only pollster who gives Trump a positive (+1) rating. The next closest is Fox News, whose number (-7) is not exactly something to brag about. No poll (except for Rasmussen) gives Trump a rating higher than 45 percent. Gallup has his approval at only 39 percent.

It’s also notable that since Trump posted his tweet, even the Rasmussen numbers have become negative, flipping to 50 disapprove. That’s one of the risks of depending on polls for your self-esteem. They change. Nevertheless, Trump is likely still wallowing in his delusional state of magnificence. However, by tweeting “Thank you to Rasmussen,” he is demonstrating that he doesn’t know what polls are. They are not favors to the subjects of the surveys and it’s peculiar to thank them for their results. Well, maybe Rasmussen is an exception to that as well.

UPDATE: Two days later, Trump dips again in Rasmussen poll. He’s now at 47% approve, 51% disapprove, with 41% strongly disapprove.

Another survey that was released Monday was from Monmouth University and covered the public view of Trump and the media. Like other polls before it, Monmouth found that Americans trust the media more than they do Donald Trump. That’s gotta sting the President who has been striving furiously to turn the nation against the press. The detail shows that 48 percent of Americans trust CNN more than Trump (35% trust Trump more). Forty-five percent trust MSNBC more than Trump (32% for Trump). Even 30 percent trust Fox News more than Trump (20% for Trump). Although the Fox numbers also show that a plurality of 37 percent trust both equally. This affirms that Trump’s base is still immovably stuck in the low thirties.

There are some other interesting results in this survey. Notably the fact that most Americans believe that the media, at least occasionally, reports “fake” news. And many them believe that it is done deliberately “in order to push an agenda.” That’s indicative of the harm done by a leader who has no respect for the free press and seeks to delegitimize journalism generally in order to escape accountability. But it also makes Trump’s trust levels even worse in context. The American people still trust the media more than Trump even though they think that what the media reports is occasionally fake. Which means that they think Trump is even more fake. Let’s see if he tweets anything about that.

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

Republican Cult’s Devotion to Trump and Fox News Revealed in ‘Most Polarizing Brands’ Survey

The success that Fox News has had in fulling their conservative propaganda mission is indisputable. They have corralled a committed congregation of faithful adherents to the far-right messaging and Trump-fluffing that is their hallmark. With sycophantic proponents like Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Donald Trump’s favorite Fox News program, Fox and Friends, the network is a non-stop peddler of GOP swill and Trump’s snake oil.

Donald Trump Messiah

A new survey sheds additional light on the totality of devotion that Republicans have for their right-wing idols and “news” sources. Morning Consult’s “Most Polarizing Brands in America” survey conducted over 300,000 interviews to determine which brands divide Democrats and Republicans the most:

“From award shows to soda commercials, politics is increasingly seeping into most facets of American culture. As a result, brands that were once dutifully neutral have taken bold stands, and others have been involuntarily dragged into controversy. Morning Consult used a wealth of consumer tracking data – 336,370 survey interviews in the last three months – to determine which brands are the most politically divisive.”

Seizing the top spot in the survey, as most divisive, is Trump Hotels. As a brand, the President’s core business bitterly divides the nation with Democrats being particularly averse to the elitist lodging. More surprising is that Republicans, while positive, were not very enthusiastically so. Perhaps there’s a faction within the GOP’s working class constituents who recognize that they aren’t welcome at places like Mar-A-Lago.

The remainder of the survey results affirm positions most observers already know. With regard to the media, the partisan lines were predictably drawn between conventional news outlets and the stridently biased Fox News variety. But what’s interesting is how narrowly focused Republicans are. Among the top twenty most divisive brands, the GOP held more favorable views of only five of them: Trump Hotels, Fox News, Fox Business Network, Chik-Fil-A, and Breitbart News. For everything else, whether news, entertainment, or sports, Republicans held a more negative view. Although in the extended list of thirty brands, Exxon/Mobil, Koch Industries, and Halliburton found favor with Republicans. They are an unambiguous confederacy of wingnuts.

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

That Republicans are so religiously bound to Fox News and other right wing media is a troubling development. It means that they care little about anything other than the conservative agenda which they cling to like a mantra. It is the definition of a cult wherein you are directed to believe only that which the cult has certified as true. Everything and everyone else is lying to you. Hence the carpet bombing of “fake news” allegations coming from Trump and his rightist comrades. It’s a closed-loop clan of prescribed beliefs from which any deviation is considered blasphemy.

A Graphic Lesson in How Fox News Perverts Even Their Own Skewed Polls

The recent shutdown of the government was the subject of controversy in the media for a couple of weeks. Both sides were spinning furiously to place the blame on the other. It should have been a simple task to figure out who was most responsible for the leadership vacuum considering that Republicans are in control of the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the White House. But when you’re dealing with a Republican Party that isn’t interested in the truth, and is led by a world-class liar, nothing is as easy as it seems.

Fox News Trump

Following the agreement to keep the government open for another three weeks, the press set about to determine where the American people stood. They conducted polls asking which party was most responsible for the shutdown. Fox News was among those media outlets conducting such surveys. And when they were ready to release the results, they made sure that their preferred political prejudices were front and center.

Rather than disclose the most relevant information, the crack Fox News creative department prepared a graphic that they immediately put on the air. The image contained partial results from the poll that put Republicans in an undeservedly positive light. Here is the tweet Fox News posted of the story that they broadcast:

Wow. So the American people think that Democrats were most responsible for the government shutdown? Not exactly. The survey question actually gave respondents another option. Donald Trump received thirteen percent of the poll’s votes. That means that the combined total for the GOP and Trump was thirty-seven percent, which exceeds that of the Democrats. Never mind that the built in biases of Fox’s poll likely undercounts the Trump votes. It was a deliberate tactic to divide the right-wing options and then only report one of them to insure that the number would be lower. Notice that they didn’t ask whether Democrats or Chuck Schumer were responsible, just the Democrats. And that’s after Republicans made a full court press to cast the blame on the so-called SchumerShutdown.

Remember, this is a Fox News poll that Fox News is distorting. It demonstrates the lengths they will go to in order to protect their lord and overseer, Donald Trump. For the record, every other poll decisively reports that Trump and Republicans were to blame for the shutdown (see this, and this, and this). There isn’t any real dispute on that question. So Fox News had only two options. They could report the news honestly (OK, stop laughing), or they could whip up a phony graphic that distorts the truth and makes their side look like winners. Guess which option they chose.

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

Most Republicans Are Devoted Fox News Cultists According to Study on Media Trust

Fox News was built from the bottom up to be a right wing propaganda machine. And for twenty years the network has faithfully pursued that mission. For their effort they have attracted an audience of glassy-eyed disciples who believe everything that Fox News tells them and none of what any other media source reports. And with the advent of Donald Trump, other media sources have all been tagged as “fake news.”

Pray for Fox News

A new study by the Gallup/Knight Foundation is confirming the spiritual bond between Fox News and its viewers. the Gallup/Knight’s “Survey on Trust, Media and Democracy” asked Americans a variety of questions about their viewing habits and opinions about the media. The results reveal that strikingly narrow minded conservative news consumers are listening to only one voice in the media: Fox News. According to the study:

“More than eight in 10 U.S. adults believe the news media are critical or very important to our democracy. They see the most important roles played by the media as making sure Americans have the knowledge they need to be informed about public affairs and holding leaders accountable for their actions. At the same time, Americans are more likely to say the media perform these roles poorly than to say they are performing them well.” […]

“Less than half of Americans, 44%, say they can think of a news source that reports the news objectively. Republicans who can name an accurate source overwhelmingly mention Fox News, while Democrats’ responses are more varied.”

The survey asked what news sources respondents considered to be objective. Twenty-four percent said Fox News. That left forty-nine percent divided up between several other sources including CNN, NPR, MSNBC, the New York Times and others. What stood out though, was that sixty percent of Republicans chose Fox News. By comparison, only twenty-one percent of Democrats chose CNN. While Democrats’ preferences were dispersed among a variety of news sources, Republicans were clutching tightly to their ideological security blanket, Fox News.

Another significant finding was that Republicans have a peculiar definition of “fake news.” Rather than the conventional view that regards made up stories intended to deceive as fake, forty-two percent of Republicans (versus seventeen percent of Democrats) consider “accurate news stories that cast a politician or political group in a negative light to always be ‘fake news.'” Let that sink in. They actually said that accurate reporting is fake if they don’t like it. That also happens to be the way Trump looks at it. Anything that he thinks is critical of him, even if it’s true, is automatically dismissed as fake.

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

The groupthink on the part of Republicans and conservatives is driving the party into a Fox News flavored abyss. They have a single source of information that is notoriously biased and often chases conspiracy theories that lead to embarrassing collisions with reality. And it’s also Trump’s base. Which means that as Trump continues to set records as the most unpopular president ever, Fox News and their viewers will become more isolated and irrelevant. And the sooner that happens, the better.