Sean Hannity and Fox News are Up to Their Hair Plugs in the Lev Parnas Affair

With each new day there are new and damning revelations affirming Donald Trump’s criminal behavior related to Ukraine and efforts to manufacture dirt on Joe Biden and subvert the 2020 election. The latest bombshells come from Lev Parnas, an associate of Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani, whose nefarious activities include extorting Ukrainian President Zelensky and surveilling former U.S. Ambassador Marie Yovanovich.

Fox News Sean Hannity

Parnas was interviewed on MSNBC Wednesday by Rachel Maddow in a wide ranging discussion that made it clear that Trump “knew exactly what was going on” and was lying about his feigned ignorance of Parnas and his mission. But the evidence of Trump’s guilt is abundant. Also interesting is the evidence of Hannity’s guilt, and that of Fox News.

Proof is emerging of Hannity’s relationship with the Giuliani Crew. Hannity himself is in bed with Parnas. They have had communications that resulted in Hannity tweeting about bogus allegations of Ukrainian interference in the U.S. election to help Hillary Clinton. That tweet was deleted, but remains archived. Trump, however, didn’t delete his subsequent tweet promoting Hannity’s story on the subject that same night. Likewise, The Giuliani Crew also communicated with Don Trump Jr, who posted a tweet attacking Yovanovich. So their is an unbroken chain of propaganda circling around between Trump, Giuliani, his Ukraine mob, Fox News, and back to Trump and his crime family.

What’s more, Parnas had much to share about the complicity of Fox News in Trump’s plot to coerce Zelensky into helping him smear Biden. The Giuliani team worked with right-wing author John Solomon to disseminate their lies. At the time Solomon worked for The Hill, but is now employed by Fox News. So naturally Hannity unleashed a furious assault on Parnas and the network that hosted him. Hannity’s rage was so intense that he lapsed into the sort of incoherent outbursts you might hear from a paranoid schizophrenic on a street corner shouting at passing cars (video below). He began…

“Yesterday, last-ditch effort, Hail Mary, smear job, yup the congenital liar attached new documents to the articles of impeachment. Including so-called evidence from a former Giuliani contact. Oh by the way on conspiracy TV. The guy is facing federal charges from the Southern District of New York. You don’t really want to mess with those people.”

Did you follow that? Apparently Hannity is upset that new incriminating evidence about Trump has come out. But he can’t rebut any of it, so he unloads a barrage of nasty adjectives. He glosses over the fact that Parnas is working with Trump’s lawyer, but hones in on his having been indicted. And while Hannity is adamant that that’s a problem for Parnas, it doesn’t seem to be a problem for other Trump comrades who are under indictment or already convicted, including his campaign chairman Paul Manafort, his national security adviser Michael Flynn, his personal attorney Michael Cohen, and his fixer Roger Stone. Hannity continued…

“So [Parnas] goes right to state-run MSDNC conspiracy channel media. Keep in mind when people like him, trying to stay out of jail, think about this, how many times have we heard from the liberals ‘oh you can’t waterboard, or use enhanced interrogation because people will say anything, they’ll lie to make it end.’ Well people trying to stay out of jail, in my humble opinion, they’ll say anything.”

Now Hannity thinks that MSNBC is “state-run” media. You have to wonder what state Hannity thinks that it’s being run out of. It must be the “Deep State.” And it’s cute that Hannity is trying to connect an indicted defendant giving testimony to waterboarding. No one has tortured Parnas. He is simply doing what many defendants do when faced with prosecution. He’s turning state’s evidence. That’s a voluntary action to secure a lighter sentence. And it does not have the pitfalls of torture, where victims will indeed say anything to make it stop. A defendant providing testimony must tell the truth or any agreement made with prosecutors is null and void.

However, Hannity’s description of defendants saying anything to stay out of jail actually fits Trump much better. After all, he is known to be a pathological liar anyway. And he doesn’t have any agreement with prosecutors to worry about voiding. He’s lying through his capped teeth to avoid prison. And he clearly doesn’t care what he says, or how ludicrous the lie, if he thinks it will either deflect from his guilt or help him to evade accountability. The whole lot of them are neck deep in criminal behavior. And if more disclosures like those Parnas is serving up come to pass, they are all going to be sharing a cell block.

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

Even Lindsey Graham is Spooked By Trump Shill Rudy Giuliani’s Russian Propaganda

Donald Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, has recently been gallivanting around the globe in an effort to dig up dirt on a potential Trump election opponent, Joe Biden. In a normal world (remember that?), that’s not the job of a lawyer who is supposedly defending Trump on charges related to his impeachment: abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Lindsey Graham, Donald Trump

Then again, Giuliani is bumbling his way through criminal allegations of his own and threatening to sue Fox News, so perhaps he doesn’t have sufficient time to devote to his Client-in-Chief.

The fact of the matter is that neither Giuliani, nor Trump’s apologists in politics or the press, have bothered to address the substance of the charges against him. They are all attacking the process or pointing fingers at people who have nothing to do with why Trump was impeached. And much of their focus has been on preposterous and thoroughly debunked conspiracy theories concocted by Russian operatives. Consequently, when Giuliani returned to Washington, he wasn’t exactly greeted with open arms. According to the Daily Beast:

“In the weeks leading up to their impeachment trial, senators on Capitol Hill are actively avoiding meeting with President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani — partly because they fear he might try to pass off Russian conspiracy theories as fact, according to interviews with more than half a dozen Republican and Democratic lawmakers and aides. […] various lawmakers, as well as administration officials and national security brass, have privately expressed concerns about Giuliani’s latest Ukraine jaunt, given that the Trump lawyer’s efforts are what helped create this Ukraine scandal and get the president impeached in the first place.”

Indeed, Giuliani may have been the acorn that grew into the mighty oak of Trump’s criminality. At the very least, Giuliani was watering the seedling every time he appeared on Fox News making statements that further incriminated Trump. The Daily Beast interviewed several Senate sources from both parties who indicated an aversion to dealing with Giuliani, whose credibility they said was suspect. Even White House sources were reticent to deal with Giuliani for fear of being caught up in his crackpot schemes. But surprisingly, one of Trump’s most devoted fluffers, Lindsey Graham, is also putting distance between himself and Trump’s lawyer:

“My advice to Giuliani would be to share what he got from Ukraine with the IC [intelligence community] to make sure it’s not Russia propaganda. I’m very suspicious of what the Russians are up to all over the world.”

That’s right. Trump’s sentinel in the Senate can’t be sure whether Trump’s attorney is a Russian asset. If Graham doesn’t trust Giuliani, then why should anyone else? Particularly those in the media who keep inviting him on to disseminate the propaganda of hostile foreign adversaries. There appears to be a consensus that Giuliani is – as John Bolton said“a hand grenade who is going to blow everybody up.” And yet, Trump himself is totally reliant on Giuliani and his unique brand of lunacy. It must true what they say about birds of feather.

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

Snowflake Giuliani Lashes Out at Fox News with Bizarre Lawsuit Threat

While the nation is focused intensely on the impeachment of Donald Trump, his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, is struggling with issues of his own. And it isn’t just that he’s the subject of three criminal investigations that have the potential to put in prison for the rest of his life. Giuliani is now at war with one of his primary client’s staunchest defenders – Fox News.

Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump

Steve hilton is a weekend host on Fox News and one of the most eager Trump-fluffers on a network crawling them. Trump frequently posts video clips of Hilton’s drooling homages to Trump on Twitter. He’s done so twenty-two times this year. And each one of them show Hilton delivering glassy-eyed, pro-Trump monologues and discussions with equally adoring Trump sycophants. (Posted below is an example of a recent one, if you have the stomach for it).

Which makes Giuliani’s latest outrage seem all the more preposterous. Rudy lashed out at Hilton for remarks he made that were indeed somewhat less than flattering. The comments came even as Trump himself was gingerly trying to put some distance between himself and his smarmy lawyer whose dealings with Ukraine are being scrutinized by the feds. Hilton said in part that…

“There’s a swamp going on with the commercial interest of Rudy Giuliani… He’s going around trying to make business deals out of the Ukraine situation, at the same time as acting for his client, President Trump. He’s trying to make money off his relationship with President Trump.”

When Trump was asked about these matters, he told reporters that they would have to “talk to Rudy.” Which is a typical dodge that Trump uses when he’s about to shove someone under an oncoming bus. Hilton’s commentary actually contained some pretty tame criticisms for behavior that could possibly make Giuliani a felon. But Giuliani can hardly attack Trump, so went after Hilton instead:

So Rudy is considering suing Fox News? That would be interesting. How would Trump’s State TV network respond to being sued by his personal attorney? Could Trump continue to appear on Fox while his lawyer is suing them? And you have to wonder what lawyers Giuliani was referring to as having advised him that he could sue Fox. After all, he is a lawyer himself who is often on Fox. And his closest legal associates are, like him, TV lawyers who have little litigation experience. They are people like Mark Levin and Gregg Jarrett and Jay Sekulow – all regulars on Fox News, the network that is the target of Giuliani’s litigation threat.

Time will tell where this goes. In all likelihood Giuliani will forget about it before long. Like his easily triggered client, Giuliani is prone to lunatic outbursts in the heat of anger. But they rarely lead to anything, because they rarely have any substance behind them. Still, the circular firing squad formation that forms among these toy soldiers is fun to watch.

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

Trump Brings His Crowdstrike Conspiracy Theory Clown Show to Fox News

No one is going to be surprised to hear that Donald Trump unleashed another flurry of flagrant lies in a barely coherent attempt to extract himself from the impeachment quandary that is burying him. But the weakness of his latest arguments is a cringeworthy display of intellectual impotence.

Donald Trump, Pennywise

Trump made yet another appearance on his favorite Fox News morning program, Fox and Friends. He called in to chat with the “Curvy Couch” potatoes and to rail against his perceived enemies in Congress and the media. It was a forty-five minute spectacle of deranged babbling that even Fox’s hosts seemed to find excessive and exasperating.

Among the myriad of topics that Trump meandered about as he vainly sought to persuade people that he isn’t criminally insane, was one that he has been obsessed with for three years. It is also one that has been certified as Russian propaganda. The subject concerns his bizarre notion that a computer server belonging to the Democratic National Committee contains some unspecified evidence of wrongdoing by Democrats. And that server has somehow been transported to Ukraine for unknown reasons. It’s all pretty ludicrous, but oh so Trumpian. His wildly careening rant eventually led to this screwball soliloquy (video below):

“They have the server from the DNC, Democratic National Committee. The FBI went in they told them ‘Get outta here. We’re not giving it to you.’ They gave the server to Crowdstrike, or whatever you call it. Which is a country…a company owned by a very wealthy Ukrainian. And I still wanna see that server. You know the FBI has never gotten that server. That’s a big part of this whole thing. Why did they give it to a Ukrainian company.”

Literally everything in that outburst is false. There is no evidence whatsoever that Ukrainians have any DNC server. Democrats never told the FBI that they couldn’t have it. Infact, the DNC provided the FBI with a mirror copy of it, which is all the FBI ever asked for. Crowdstrike is not owned by a wealthy Ukrainian. It’s actually a publicly owned U.S. technology company based in Sunnyvale, California. It was founded by two American citizens, one of whom was born in Russia. It would be difficult for Trump to have gotten more wrong in this statement. It was so preposterous that even Fox’s co-host Steve Doocy questioned it:

Doocy: Are you sure they did that? Are you sure they gave it to Ukraine?
Trump: Well, that’s what the word is.

So we have now descended to the point that the President of the United States is justifying his ridiculous conspiracy theories by citing “the word” of unnamed rumor mongers. Trump’s former White House Homeland Security Adviser, Tom Bossert, recently addressed this nonsense saying that “It’s not only a conspiracy theory, it is completely debunked.” Bossert was also troubled by the fact that this theory was being propagated by Trump’s personal attorney, and executive tripe wrangler, Rudy Giuliani.

This isn’t the first time Trump has gone haywire over the Case of the Mysterious Server Just last month he seemed to have had a mental malfunction that produced this unholy gibberish:

“I still ask the FBI, where is the server? How come the FBI never got the server from the DNC? Where is the server? I want to see the server. Let’s see what’s on the server. So the server they say is held by a company whose primary ownership individual is from Ukraine. I would like to see the server. I think it’s very important for this country to see the server. Nobody wants to see it. The media never wants to see it. I’ll tell you, Republicans want to see it.”

And if you think the text of that is wacko, you should see the video It is one of the best arguments for the impeachment of Trump as an urgent necessity. But if that isn’t enough, Trump also told the Fox Friends that “If I didn’t fire Comey, I would be in some trouble right now … It turns out to be the best move I ever made, firing Comey, because they were trying to take me down.” And that is as blatant a confession of abuse of power and obstruction of justice as you’re ever likely to see on television. Trump seems to be determined to impeach himself. So let’s help him out and get it done.

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

REALLY? Trump Complains About ‘TV Lawyers’ While Clinging to His Own TV Lawyers

No one is ever going to mistake Donald Trump for someone who can construct coherent analyses of current events. He has enough trouble pronouncing words with more than two syllables. Any sentence he utters risks contradicting itself before he reaches the period. And that’s not even considering the sheer volume of lies that flow from his infantile rhetoric and hostile bombast.

Donald Trump TV Set

Far too often Trump manages to express himself in ways that generate exasperated groans from people who remember when presidents were intelligent and articulate. And Wednesday was one of those days. Following the congressional hearings on his impeachment, Trump held a press conference with President Erdogan of Turkey. Naturally, there would be questions about the hearings, so you might assume that he would be prepared. Instead, Trump demonstrated that his thoughts on this critical and historic subject have the depth of an abandoned bird bath (video below).

The first question went to the friendliest of Trump-fluffers, a reporter from the rightist propaganda outfit, One America News Network (OANN). Her profoundly probing question inquired as to how Trump felt about how the hearings went. Gee, can anyone guess his answer?

Trump dished out every typical talking point that has fueled his robo-defense for the past several months. He sarcastically asked her if she was referring to “the witch hunt.” Then he said that “I haven’t watched for one minute,” despite having tweeted more than thirty times about it (although that wasn’t his his record). In true wannabe dictator form, he called it “a sham and shouldn’t be allowed.” He falsely asserted that “The Whistleblower gave a lot of incorrect information.” Nevermind that it was corroborated by Trump himself, as well as his Chief of Staff, Mick Mulvaney. He insisted that “All they have to do is look very, very simply at the transcript,” which explicitly affirms his guilt.

But even after all of that, Trump still had it in him to astound with his flagrant hypocrisy. Earlier that morning, Trump lashed out at Daniel Goldman, the lawyer that Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee appointed to question the witnesses. He whined that “I see they’re using lawyers that are television lawyers. They took some guys off television. I’m not surprised to see it because Schiff can’t do his own questions.”

First of all, Goldman may have been a legal analyst for a while with MSNBC, but he was also an assistant U.S. attorney in the southern district of New York for 10 years. The GOP’s lawyer (I guess they can’t do their own questions either) was Steve Castor, whose work has been limited to the Republican staff on the House Oversight Committee for the past fourteen years. More to the point, though, Trump is unleashing a bizarre complaint considering what he said in his press avail with Erdogan:

“If you read the transcript, this was analyzed by great lawyers. This was analyzed by Gregg Jarrett. It was analyzed by Mark Levin. It was analyzed by everybody. They said the call that I made with the president of Ukraine was a perfect one.”

Jarrett and Levin are both Fox News “lawyers” whose jobs are to appear on television as dedicated Trump-fluffers. They do not do any legal work at all. In other words, they are “TV lawyers.” And they are the only lawyers Trump could cite when looking for affirmation of his allegedly “perfect” telephone skills. What’s more, his personal attorneys, Rudy Giuliani and Jay Sekulow, are frequent guests on Fox News. That’s where Trump saw them and subsequently hired them. So … more TV Lawyers. And all of them either working for, or closely affiliated with, Fox News.

As an aside, another pair of Fox News lawyers, the husband and wife team of Joseph diGenova and Victoria Toensing, were briefly considered by Trump as additions to his personal legal team, but ultimately did not join up due to undisclosed “conflicts.” On Wednesday diGenova appeared on Fox News and made some of the most repulsive and bigoted remarks ever aired on Fox.

This is what you get when you elect a reality TV game show host with zero experience in government. Trump has no idea how to manage a large bureaucracy. And he doesn’t know any reputable attorneys other than those he sees on Fox News. The same goes for the secretaries in his Cabinet and the advisors on his White House staff. Trump is about as capable of putting together a competent team as your uncle in Alabama who watches Fox all day in his trailer park. And he’s even less aware of his own hypocrisies and ignorance.

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

All Foxed Up: Trump is Relying on Ludicrous Legal Gibberish to Fight His Impeachment

It often seems like Donald Trump is his own worst enemy. He confesses to impeachable crimes on national TV. He actually commits new crimes the same way. He attacks his GOP Senate colleagues who will be deciding his fate. And he rambles endlessly in a manner that only provides more evidence of his guilt and unfitness for office.

Donald Trump, Constitution

So it wouldn’t be off base If you thought that Trump is digging his own political grave. And in the process he seems to be getting the worst possible legal advice. That shouldn’t surprise anyone who has followed the antics of Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, who, when he isn’t flipping out on Fox News, he’s butt dialing reporters. And his Attorney Genuflect, Bill Barr, isn’t any better. However, Trump’s most trusted legal advisors appear to be an even worse source for someone in such desperate legal jeopardy. He seems to be leaning heavily on the bootlicking sycophants of Fox News. Gee, what could go wrong?

The muttonheads at Fox are the source for some of Trump’s most preposterous ideas. They include suing Nancy Pelosi for conducting the impeachment inquiry. He has also proposed his own impeachment of Pelosi and Rep. Adam Schiff (which can’t be done). And he’s also threatening to sue CNN for – get this – false advertising. Now, the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends are offering their interpretation of the Constitution’s impeachment language. And it’s just as ridiculous as you would think. Here is the bizarre advice Trump is getting from Fox contributor Dan Bongino, who is not a lawyer (video below):

“First off, this isn’t a real impeachment, okay? President Trump should ignore the proceeds. I don’t mean politically ignore it. He has to respond. I mean he should treat it as what it is, which is a non-impeachment impeachment.”

Huh? Where Bongino gets the idea that there is such a thing as a “non-impeachment impeachment,” or that Trump has the ability to legally ignore it, is a mystery. But Bongino continues by insulting the constitutional knowledge and reading comprehension of Democrats in Congress – who ARE lawyers and have studied constitutional law. Bongino correctly points out that the Constitution grants the House of Representatives “the sole power to impeach,” but then adds this Olympic-grade nonsense:

[The Constitution] doesn’t say the House of Representative. Again, for the liberals who have a tough time with that, that’s plural. That means the House of Representatives, meaning they would take a vote, which they haven’t. So this is not an impeachment. It’s a political stunt. It should be politically responded to, but tactically speaking it is a fake non-impeachment. And the Republicans should treat it as such.”

First off, a “fake non-impeachment” would be a real impeachment. But setting that blunder aside, Bongino’s logic is hopelessly warped. The fact that the Constitution uses “House of Representatives” in the plural doesn’t mean that there is a requirement for a vote, and it certainly doesn’t say anything of of the sort. That is a wholly manufactured conclusion by Bongino. It just means that the House proceeds under its own authority and rules. Those rules, by the way, were written by the House when it was controlled by a Republican majority.

What’s more, Bongino’s absurd notion that representatives (plural) means a vote by the full House is required doesn’t make any sense at all. He seems to think that there is only one Democrat in Congress who is conducting the inquiry and, therefore, it’s illegitimate. Of course, there are dozens of representatives, including Republicans, who are actively involved. So that would meet Bongino’s crackpot criteria for plurality. It’s also notable that his dimwitted views were offered the day after a federal judge ruled that the House impeachment inquiry is legal and valid. Nice timing.

With legal guidance like this it’s no wonder that Trump is floundering and fearful. And his mental state continues to decline as the future looks ever more grim for him and his cohorts. It’s so bad that even his lawyers are having to get lawyers. But the Fox News Legal Aide Society will undoubtedly continue to serve up their terrible advice. Which is great news for Democrats – and all Americans – who will ultimately be the beneficiaries of Trump’s impeachment and removal from office thanks to his own ignorance and that of of his boneheaded legal advisors.

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

Ignoramus-in-Chief: Trump Thinks He Can Sue and/or Impeach Nancy Pelosi

The march toward total and utter mental infirmity continues apace as Donald Trump nears his inevitable impeachment. The symptoms of Cornered Rat Syndrome are becoming more obvious and more severe. The deranged ranting at his cult rallies is simultaneously laughable and frightening. And all the while his sycophants in politics and the press deepen their adoration of Dear Leader as they would a king or a god.

Donald Trump

On Saturday at the so-called “Values” Voters Summit – a right-wing propaganda festival masquerading as a Christian revival meeting – Trump showed up to slather some embarrassingly overt pandering around. During the course of his tiresome and repetitive oratory, he threw in a variety of absurdities that illustrate his growing fear and desperation. For instance, he yammered something about “They are using the IRS against me.” Nevermind that his appointees are running the agency, or that he didn’t bother to explain who “they” are. He also babbled on that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi “hates our country” because she’s engaging in the constitutional process of investigating his flagrantly impeachable crimes.

However, with a doubt Trump’s hysteria reached fever pitch when he unleashed a load of throbbing gibberish aimed at members of Congress who are doing their jobs (video below). And it’s important to note that they are acting on behalf of the American people who broadly favor Trump’s impeachment and removal from office according every recent poll, including one by Fox News. Trump’s tantrum was the perfect example of just how ignorant and incoherent he is in these late stages of his psychoses. Referring to his perceived enemies on the Hill, Trump impotently bellowed that…

“We’re going to take a look at it. We’re going after these people. These are bad, bad people. I actually told my lawyers, I said sue them anyway. He’s got immunity. But they can’t sue them for that. I said sue them anyway. Even if we lose, the American public will understand. And sue Nancy Pelosi. Or maybe we should just impeach them. Because they’re lying and what they’re doing is a terrible thing for our country.”

If lying is the criteria that Trump wants to use, than there are more than 12,000 articles of impeachment waiting for Trump. More worrisome for Trump though, is that the lawyers he said he spoke with are goofballs like Rudy Giuliani and William Barr. So maybe they failed to grasp the fact that members of Congress cannot be sued for their official duties or remarks made in congressional proceedings. That’s actually spelled out in the Constitution’s “speech and debate clause” (Article I, Section 6). Furthermore, Trump’s threat to “sue them anyway” could make him subject to charges of judicial harassment, the willful exploitation of the legal system with malicious intent.

Additionally, Trump’s interest in impeaching Pelosi and Schiff is just more fantastical ramblings from an ill-informed whiner with delusions of tyrannical powers. There is no facility in the Constitution for impeaching members of Congress. This is just another example of Trump’s mush-headed hostility carrying him off into a bizarro world where he is blissfully omnipotent. And apparently, his goofballs (aka lawyers) don’t have either the intellect or the courage to tell him he’s nuts.

This combination of abject stupidity and absence of rational advice is going to insure that things will continue to devolve as Trump’s fortunes, and mental capacity, whither into ash. So the question facing America now is whether to buy more popcorn or Prozac. Or both to be on the safe side.

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

And You Thought Trump Was Nuts? Wait Til You See Giuliani on Fox News!

Watching Donald Trump descend into a steaming abyss of madness is horrifying for Americans who love their country. Although most can’t deny feeling at least a smidgen of satisfaction and relief that a dangerous sociopath is suffering the well deserved consequences of his betrayal. Trump is lost in a toxic fog of rancid anger and fear that threatens to turn every artery in his jellified skull into tiny anueristic IED’s

Rudy Giuliani, Donald Trump

Lately Trump’s desperation and paranoia has driven him to furious and false attacks on his perceived enemies including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Intelligence Committee chairman, Adam Schiff. He has made incoherent defenses of his obviously illegal entreaties to Ukraine and China. And his own behavior and words are turning out to be the best justifications for his impeachment.

However, as stunningly bizarre as all of his antics have been for the past few weeks, he has some stiff competition in the race for Psycho of the Year. His own personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, is challenging the Lunatic-in-Chief with some memorable routines in the Fox News Cirque du So Lame. On Friday Giuliani told Fox News’ Martha MacCallum that his mission is “to disrupt the world.” And on Sunday Giuliani was interviewed by Fox’s MediaBuzz host, Howard Kurtz. To say it was a hot mess would be far too mild. Giuliani was a virtual advertisement for cocaine-infused Red Bull. See for yourself:

WTF is he talking about? After telling Kurtz, a Trump-friendly Foxie, that he should be ashamed of himself, Giuliani took out what he said was “thirty years of articles,” which far pre-date Joe Biden’s term as Vice-President. What this has to do with the four year old Ukraine affair is anyone’s guess. But Giuliani was so hyped up that Kurtz couldn’t stop him to go to commercial.

A second clip in that thread shows Giuliani shushing Kurtz and calling him “pathetic” as the host tries to ask him about the “transcript” of Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky and Trump’s own confession to extortion on national TV. Naturally, those questions weren’t answered. And while Giuliani was whining about being interrupted (which he wasn’t), the chyron below him read “Ukrainian says no evidence of Biden Wrongdoing.” That’s a Fox chyron!

A third video clip shows Giuliani responding to Biden’s suggestion that news programs stop booking him due to his constant and flagrant lying. So in the midst of his continued whining about imaginary interruptions, Giuliani raises a brand new issue saying that “We haven’t moved to Romania yet. Wait til we get to Romania.” We’re waiting, Rudy. Then he asserts that “they” are laughing at us. If by “us” he means himself, I’ll have to agree. And once again, Kurtz can’t get him to shut up long enough to end the segment.

With impeachment becoming an inevitability, Trump couldn’t be in more trouble. Well, unless he were saddled with a nutcase like Giuliani as his attorney. Giuliani has been reduced to spewing third-rate conspiracy theories and wailing like a insolent child who was denied a fourth cupcake. He makes no sense whatsoever as he connects dots that only he can see. And this is the legal counsel that Trump is relying on to get him through this debacle. No wonder he’s flipping out.

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

Lacking Any Coherent Impeachment Defense, Trump Deploys An All Fox News Blitzkrieg

On Wednesday morning Donald Trump released the transcript White House provided, non-verbatim memo of his July phone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky. It was somewhat anticlimactic considering that he had already admitted that he pressured Ukraine to smear Biden, and even declared Biden “corrupt” and subject to the electric chair. Still, he has been saying for days that the call was “perfect,” that he had done nothing wrong, and promised that it would exonerate him. What the hell was he thinking!

Donald Trump, Phone, Pacifier

Keeping in mind that several days prior to this phone call, Trump had frozen nearly $400 million dollars in military aid to Ukraine, who were engaged in a conflict with Russian troops on their eastern border. With that as context for Trump’s remarks, here are some relevant and incriminating parts of the memo (full document below):

“I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it. […] I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it. As you saw yesterday, that whole nonsense ended with a very poor performance by a man named Robert Mueller, an incompetent performance.”

“Whatever you can do, it’s very important that you do it. […] I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair. A lot of people are talking about that, the way they shut your very good prosecutor down and you had some very bad people involved. Mr. Giuliani is a highly respected man. He was the mayor of New York City, a great mayor, and I would like him to call you. I will ask him to call you along with the Attorney General. Rudy very much knows what’s happening and he is a very capable guy. If you could speak to him that would be great.”

“The other thing, There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me.”

So Trump starts out by asking for “a favor.” That’s precisely how Godfather Don Corleone began his conversations with shakedown victims when he made them “an offer you can’t refuse.” Zelensky knew that the aid his country needs was at risk. This is as close to a quid pro quo as is ever encountered in organized crime. And having that followed up by a request to meet with Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, and his Attorney General, William Barr – which is a new and troubling revelation – only makes Trump’s clearly unlawful intentions more clear.

The fact that Trump bothered to malign special counsel Robert Mueller is another indication that he is tying this call to his own political tribulations. And directly warning Zelensky that “it’s very important that you do … whatever you can do,” is hardly a subtle nudge. Trump then brings up the Ukrainian prosecutor who he calls “very good” despite being held in disrepute by the U.S. government, the European Union, the World Bank, and other international institutions.

Trump then got to the real point when he brought up Joe Biden and made the objectively false statement that he “stopped the prosecution” of Biden’s son. In fact, the corrupt prosecutor wasn’t even actively pursuing the case. And every investigation into the matter found zero evidence of any wrongdoing by Biden. Nevertheless, Trump pressed this issue repeatedly in the phone call and kept pressing for a meeting with Giuliani and Barr.

If this is Trump’s idea of an exculpatory document, you have to wonder what he considers incriminating. Trump is seen here explicitly abusing his power by recruiting a foreign leader to interfere with an American election. And he is using funds allocated by Congress to extort the illegal results he wants. There is no defense for this criminal behavior. Trump couldn’t even provide one, so he claimed on Wednesday that it should all be ignored because the stock market went up. Really? For the record, the market today is stagnant at best. It’s exactly where it was in January of 2018, a year and a half ago. Trump is also arguing his innocence based on his leading poll numbers. Except that he’s losing to every top Democrat. In fact, a Fox News poll saying just that was released a week before Trump called Zelensky. Coincidence?

Then Trump turned to his goto protectors at Fox News to vainly try to spin this in his favor. He posted (so far) twelve (12!) tweets of Trump-fluffing sycophants that contained no factual refutation of the damning contents of the White House summary phone call. They included:

  • Fox News contributor Mollie Hemingway writing that the whistleblower’s attorney worked for Hillary Clinton and “Schuck” Schumer. That was for short internships nearly twenty years ago.
  • Fox host Mark Levin asserting that the is media trying to protect Biden.
  • Sean Hannity interviewing Attorney Joe DiGenova, whose reputation was so bad that he couldn’t be added to Trump’s staff.
  • Tucker Carlson interviewing Jenna Ellis, a member of the Trump 2020 Advisory Board.
  • Sean Hannity interviewing GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, a sellout who once called Trump an idiot and a liar, but who now kowtows to him in the most embarrassing fashion.
  • Lou Dobbs interviewing Harmeet Dhillon from the Republican National Lawyers Association.
  • Sean Hannity (again), this time with Kevin McCarthy, House Republican Leader.
  • Lou Dobbs and Jeanine Pirro, another Fox News host and shameless Trump-fluffer.
  • Yet another Hannity reference saying that the whistleblower has a political bias.
  • Fox and Friends asserting that “Democrats have been talking about Impeaching Donald Trump since before he was inaugurated. @SteveDoocy @foxandfriends”
  • Fox host Bret Baier saying that “You don’t see a direct quid pro quo in this.”
  • Fox’s White House correspondent, John Roberts, saying that there was no quid pro quo in the memo.

Someone who has a good argument for innocence wouldn’t have to resort to a cadre of notoriously biased pundits and Fox News propagandists for legal help. But this is Trump’s whole modus operandi. Remember, his preparation for the presidency was hosting a reality TV game show for fourteen years. His entire reference to his job is tied to television and celebrity. So rather than accumulate knowledgeable defenses from intelligent, reputable people, he leans on dishonest TV personalities talking to partisan hacks. You know, people just like himself.

UPDATE: The whistleblower complaint has been declassified and released. It’s available here with a few redactions.

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

Lying Fox News Host Lies that Trump Has Never Lied to the American People

The mission of Fox News from its inception was to advance the goals of the nationalist right-wing and the Republican Party. But when Donald Trump came along they transformed noticeably into a State TV propaganda outlet devoted single-mindedly to this president and his hostile and demented ravings. Virtually every program lavishes praise on Trump and viciously maligns his critics.

Fox News, Donald Trump

What’s worse, is that there is no lie that is beneath the already sunken principles of Fox News. They are taking their cues from a president who has already told more than 12,000 lies since his inauguration. The legacy of the Trump presidency (contrary to his delusional hopes) will surely include this historically depraved achievement, along with caging babies and being a puppet for Vladimir Putin.

As if to to emphasize the enthusiasm Fox News has for lying about Trump, one of his favorite Fox hosts, Stuart Varney, conducted a dumbfounding interview with conservative Republican Joe Walsh who is challenging Trump for the GOP nomination for president. Walsh is hardly a pristine representative of political ethics, but in this segment (video below) of Varney’s program he shines with uncharacteristic virtue, and makes Varney look like a flaccid Trump sycophant and cult follower.

Walsh began by correctly observing that “We’ve never had a situation like this where we have a president that we fundamentally cannot believe.” A surprisingly skeptical Varney asked Walsh for an example. That was his first mistake. Walsh quickly provided an example from just the day before when Trump’s own staff admitted that Trump lied at the G7 summit when he said that he held high level phone calls with China about tariffs. Walsh’s example led to this bizarre exchange and ludicrous denial:

Varney: That’s not a lie. Let’s not get technical. If the man said – and he did – that high level talks had been held with China, that is not a lie. They were held with China.
Walsh: Stuart, he said there were high level phone calls with Chinese officials. His staff admitted that was not true, that he lied in order to manipulate the market.
Varney: Okay, give me another one.
Walsh: Stuart, you really don’t believe that that’s a lie?
Varney: No I don’t.

It is impossible to have a coherent discussion with someone who hears a flagrant falsehood, but denies what he just heard and tries to move past it in complete blindness. Varney simply accepts whatever Trump says as the truth, even if his own staff says that it isn’t. This isn’t political loyalty. It’s cult worship. And it continued further as the interview progressed:

Walsh: Do you believe this president lies?
Varney: No.
Walsh: You don’t believed he’s ever lied?
Varney: He exaggerates and spins.
Walsh: Okay, do you believe he’s ever told the American people a lie?
Varney: No.

Walsh finally gave up in exasperation as he realized that Varney’s doctrinal programming was impenetrable. He has clearly adopted the first order of a cult: Believe only the Leader. Everyone else is lying. And this isn’t even the first time this week that a Trump shill has claimed that Trump never utters anything less than the God’s honest truth. On CNN Chris Cuomo interviewed Trump’s 2020 campaign Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany. She also insisted that Trump has never ever told a lie. Trump’s new press secretary, Stephanie Grisham, said that she doesn’t think his lies are lies. This is all reminiscent of Kellyanne Conway’s “alternative facts,” And Rudy Giuliani’s Truth isn’t truth.”

No rational person could ever assert that Trump has never told a lie. Trump has lied about things big and small. He’s lied about tariffs being paid by China; about his polling; about the size of his crowds; about Obama; about the environment; about the border wall; and always about the news being fake. But Trump’s disciples regard him as a messiah who is an infallible manifestation of perfection. Which is precisely how Trump regards himself, having recently declared that he is The Chosen One.” And sadly, his Deplorables believe that too.

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