How The F*ck Can Fox News Report On Trump With These Glaring Conflicts

When Donald Trump was running for president he insisted that he knew “all the best people.” He promised that his administration would benefit from his connections in the business community. He argued that the typical government bureaucrats were failing and that fresh blood was needed. So how is that working out?

Donald Trump Fox News

To date, Trump’s appointees have been decidedly unimpressive. Almost none of them have experience in the fields for which they have been nominated. What’s more, they are firmly rooted in the same governmental swamp that he said he would drain. Politicians and billionaires are quickly filling up his cabinet and advisory slots. But there’s something even more troubling that many of his candidates have in common.

Fox News had a singular role in manufacturing the Trump candidacy. They gave him more airtime than any other candidate and broadcast his stump speeches for hours without interruption. And now they are supplying him with a roster of personnel to take prominent positions in his administration. Here are the Fox News candidates for Trump’s White House (so far). All of them have been on the Fox payroll:

  • K.T. McFarland: She has already been named as a Deputy National Security Advisor.
  • Ben Carson: He is reported to have been offered the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
  • John Bolton: He is up for Secretary of State, although he is lately being eclipsed by Mitt Romney. And you can throw Fox’s Newt Gingrich into this stew as well.
  • Sarah Palin: If you can believe it, she is in line for Secretary of the Interior.
  • Laura Ingraham: This media-hating pundit could be Trump’s next press secretary.
  • Monica Crowley: (See Laura Ingraham).
  • Mike Huckabee: This former Fox host is being considered for Commerce Secretary.
  • Scott Brown: After losing senate races twice he is now looking at the Veterans Administration.
  • Pete Hegseth: This Koch brothers cohort is also rumored for VA head.
  • Anthony Scaramucci: He is a Wall Street fund manager who is already on Trump’s Presidential Transition Team Executive Committee.
  • Eric Bolling: Currently a c co-host of The Five, he is said to be under consideration for something at Commerce.
  • Donald Trump: That’s right. Trump himself had a recurring role on Fox & Friends for years with his “Mondays With Trump” segment.

[Update: Fox correspondents Heather Nauert and Jonathan Wachtel have been hired by Trump’s State Department]
[Update II: Trump nominates Fox contributor Scott Brown to be ambassador to New Zealand]

With so many of their own personnel potentially joining the Trump administration, how can the network fairly cover him? OK, that’s a dumb question. They have never fairly covered him. But still, they would now be in the position of having to critically assess the performance of their own former employees. These are people with whom they have long standing relationships and affinity. They are also people who are likely to return to the network at some point in the future. That fact alone could impact the behavior of both Fox and their alumni. Some have already left Fox and returned when they had brief political conflicts (Carson, Gingrich, and Brown).

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

Never fear. Fox will find a way to cope with this burden. However, that will probably be to continue their mission as Propaganda Ministry for the Republican Party. Only now Fox will be an official arm of the White House under Trump. They will be America’s Pravda serving the interests of a megalomaniac and his team of apple polishers.

Comic Relief: Fox News Runs Laughably Biased Report On Media Bias

Reminiscing about the year gone by is a favorite pastime of media outlets as the calendar turns the page to a new year. At the top of everyone’s list are lists – generally assembling the best or worst of some category of events. And Fox News is no different as they try to capture those things that resonated for the nation, or at least for their viewers.

However, being so devoted to misinforming their audience as they are, Fox couldn’t help themselves as they demonstrated an Olympian mastery of self-delusion and unintentional comedy. They chose for their topic a collection of what they called “The Worst of the Worst: Ranking the Most Bias (sic) Reporting of 2014”

Fox News

First of all, we can’t let it go by that Fox inadvertently provided the perfect description of themselves in the on-screen graphic for this segment. Either somebody wasn’t paying attention, or there is mole in the studio with a great sense of humor. Moving on…

For the cable network best known for manipulating news stories to fit their editorial obsession, Fox should have recognized the danger of looking foolish by feebly attempting to turn the spotlight around to others. But no, not Fox. They dispatched their crack Fox & Friends crew to tackle this precarious subject ignoring the risks. The segment (video below) was anchored by the recently re-hired Scott Brown, a Republican politician-turned-talking-head who is the only candidate in history to lose two races for the Senate in two years, running in two different states. And shortly after each loss, signing up with Fox News. His co-host was evanga-pundit Elisabeth Hasselbeck, a loser in her own right having been voted off of Survivor only to wash up on the island of Fox & Friends.

Hasselbeck opened the episode by declaring, without a hint of irony or self-awareness, that “It’s been a banner year for bias in the mainstream media.” Then she and Brown welcomed their guest, Genevieve Wood. She was introduced as a senior contributor to the Daily Signal blog. What they left out was that the Daily Signal is the propaganda arm of the ultra-rightist Heritage Foundation, where she has been a member of the senior management. Wood’s appearance was solicited because she was one of the judges for “The Worst of the Worst” awards presented by another fringy right-wing enterprise, the Media Research Center (home to NewsBusters, the lie-riddled, wingnut version of Media Matters).

It was in this atmosphere that the three orthodox conservatives set off to impugn the journalistic skills of their avowed enemies in the press. They began with a swat at the head of NBC News, Jeffrey Zucker, for his refusal to be bullied by Fox into covering the Benghazi hoax. Then came a swipe at CBS’s Scott Pelley, who earned his tribute for correctly reporting that ObamaCare did not result in job losses. Then they defended the family of their Fox colleague Sarah Palin who, with her daughter Bristol, had incited a drunken brawl at an Alaskan beer bash. And finally, they slammed Politico’s Roger Simon for a rather harmless and snarky Tweet.

In what they called a “banner year for bias” they managed to miss every serious incident of it. That may be due to that fact that most of it was occurring right under their noses in the Fox News studios. With a concerted effort to portray everything that President Obama did as a step toward Armageddon, and a devotion to overtly opposing any progressive policy, the Fox news-manglers demonstrated just how media bias is done: With a year-end ceremony hosted by staunchly activist right-wingers, bashing journalists they have long castigated as ideological foes. Is it possible that in 2015 there is still anyone who actually believes that Fox News is “fair and balanced?”

Get the ALL NEW 2nd volume of
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Sarah Palin Look-a-Like Scott Brown Takes Her Place At Fox News

The worst kept secret in cable news has just been confirmed. After having lost the senate seat he held for a mere two years, Scott Brown has been hired as a contributor by Fox News.

Scott BrownFilling a role that was held by Sarah Palin until her recent dismissal, Brown is the new beauty pageant contestant turned politician who was unable to complete a full term in office to be scooped up Fox, just like Palin. His unique experience having done nothing of substance while in office other than criticize the President makes him the perfect acquisition for a network that has made its reputation by avoiding substance and bashing the Obama administration.

Fox has been struggling to persuade people that they are moderating their tone after having been embarrassed by election coverage that was grossly biased and detached from reality. So they canned Palin and Dick Morris as scapegoats for their ineptitude. However, they kept the core of their conservative message machine with Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Megyn Kelly, Neil Cavuto, the Fox & Friends Kindergarten Krew, etc. What’s more, they hired Erick Erickson (who called a Supreme Court justice a “goat-fucking child molester”) and Mark Levin (who thinks even Republicans are socialists) was tapped to fill the Palin void on the Hannity show.

Anyone who believes that Fox intends to adjust their programming to be more neutral is terminally naive. They are merely throwing a life saver to one of their favorite politicians who is still a potential candidate for either the senate or governorship of Massachusetts in 2014. Fox is well known for employing prospective candidates for political office despite the breach of ethics that presents. They are currently allowing Geraldo Rivera to host his own show while testing the waters for a senate race in New Jersey.

Fox apparently was nervous about not having a Palinesque figure on their payroll, and now they can rest easier with Brown filling her designer pumps. Thanks to Brown, Fox’s tradition of shallow analysis and strident harangues will proceed without interruption.

Fox News Is Very Concerned About Sexism

On today’s front page of the Fox News online spew factory known as Fox Nation, there was a featured article that raised concerns about sexism in the media. Of course, it wasn’t directed to the dominance of ditzy blonds that populate Fox’s programming, or the fixation they have on First Lady Michelle Obama’s wardrobe or weight. It was that the Washington Post crossed some line of political correctness that offended Fox’s commitment to gender equality and respect when they published a story about Michelle Bachmann’s performance at the New Hampshire GOP debate. But take a look at the “Pic of the Day” that appeared just to the right of Bachmann’s on the web site:

The first thing that should be noted about this outrage is that the Fox Nationalists clearly don’t know what the phrase “Assume the position means.” They seem to think it has something to do with a sexual position. That, of course, is not so, but it tells us a lot about the pervs at Fox News. The phrase is a reference to a police command that a subject submit to a search for weapons or other contraband.

The next thing to note is that the Washington Post didn’t initiate the use of the phrase. They merely reported that John King, the CNN moderator of the debate, used it to prepare the candidates for the start of the debate. It was a play on words with an association to “positions” that candidates take on issues. In as much as the Post editorialized the phrase with regard to Bachmann, it was in a positive manner, saying that she “rose above the usual positioning” and that she “stole the show.”

Finally, the spectacle of Fox News becoming disturbed about sexism is a joke. As alluded to above, they are generally dismissive of legitimate complaints of sexism, which they portray as liberal whining and political correctness. But worse than that, they ceaselessly exploit sexism on the air in pursuit of horny viewers. So I took a look at Fox Nation’s “Pic of the Day” for just this year and found that they might not be as sensitive to the prevalence of sexism as they pretend to be.

This exploitation of women’s sexuality for commercial purposes is a part of the Fox News identity. It is Rupert Murdoch’s editorial creed and is practiced across his properties. If they could get away with it, they would broadcast nude pictures of women as Murdoch’s British tabloid The Sun does daily on its Page Three feature. This has long been one of the most blatant hypocrisies of the Murdoch empire which purports to advocate a Puritan-style, faith-based, morality. Somehow, Fox’s glassy-eyed congregation is able to ignore this contradiction.

To be fair, while researching this article I found that Fox was not entirely consumed with the sexual exploitation of women. There was one example of a male victim of this rhetorical abuse:

That’s Republican congressman Aaron Schock of Illinois. And, no, this is not a picture that he tweeted to a fan online. It is a picture that he posed for and was published in Men’s Health Magazine. Consequently it was on newsstands nationwide and seen by millions, not just a handful of individuals on a social network. That’s apparently the difference. If you send naked pictures of yourself to a couple of net-friends you are called upon to resign. If you publish them in magazines with millions of readers, as Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) did, it’s perfectly OK. Got that? And if you’re going to embroil yourself in a sex scandal, at least get some actual sex. Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) and Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) were both caught with prostitutes in violation of the law, but they are both still serving in Congress.

Fox News Poll: Obama Beats All Republicans In 2012

All it takes is a fluke victory in Massachusetts for Fox News pundits predict the demise of the Democratic Party. In the days since Scott Brown won the special election for the Senate the conservative press has been unreservedly giddy. They have proclaimed the end of everything from health care to the Obama presidency. The only problem is that nobody told the voters.

A poll from that bastion of socialist twaddle, Fox News, shows that Barack Obama is preferred over every Republican they surveyed against him.

By 47 percent to 35 percent Obama bests former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. The president has an even wider edge over former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin (55 percent to 31 percent), and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (53 percent to 29 percent).

On top of that, the Tea Bagger phenomenon is turning out to be the biggest bubble since the tulip mania. As I wrote in The Tea Party Delusion, the popularity of the movement is largely a mirage created by the media (i.e. Fox News). Almost half the country doesn’t even know they exist. In this new poll from Fox, they match Obama against a generic candidate from the Tea Party and Obama wins by more than two to one (48% to 23%). Even amongst Republicans a majority (54%) reject the Baggers.

Perhaps the rumors of the President’s demise are highly exaggerated. The significance of these results in a poll from an overtly hostile source cannot be understated. By the same token, the lesson of the Massachusetts race is that overconfidence is a dangerous extravagance.

The 2012 election is still 34 months away and the stable of potential opponents have a not-so-secret weapon: Fox News. Yes, the network that commissioned this poll actually employs four prospective GOP candidates. In addition to the two surveyed here, Palin and Gingrich, they also have Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum on the payroll. It is unprecedented that a so-called news enterprise would actually employ so many electoral adversaries from the same party, or for that matter, any party. You have to wonder if Romney, Tim Pawlenty, and Bobby Jindal feel left out.

The association with Fox could prove valuable over the next two and a half years. The Fox Farm Team will have an opportunity to rack up a lot of free practice time on the air. That exposure, along with the rest of Fox’s advocacy for the rightist agenda, is an expensive asset that will only be afforded to members of the team.

Fox Nation HitlerAnd the coaching staff at Fox is already preparing the field. Fox Nation took the occasion of Brown’s victory to promote a video that portrays Democrats as despondent Nazis being berated by their leader, Adolf Hitler.

In the run up to the 2008 election, and in the year that followed, there were many complaints about the right-wing’s hyperbolic attempts to associate the President with Hitler, Stalin, or Marx, and despite the documented evidence of it, Fox always tried to dismiss it as overzealous opponents. But this video is unambiguously making the Nazi correlation and it is prominently featured on the Fox Nation web site. And it’s not the first time:

Fox Nation Hitler

The campaign for 2012 is clearly in progress and Fox is implementing their most aggressive and dirtiest game plan. But according to their own poll it isn’t yet having much of an effect. The operative word there is “yet.” If there is one thing that Rupert Murdoch, Roger Ailes, et al have in abundance it is patience. This is just the bottom of the second inning and they have plenty of pine tar left to apply extra spin to the ball.

The Morning After: The Last Best Reason To Vote For Martha Coakley

There are a multitude of reasons to vote for Martha Coakley in Massachusetts today. They have all been discussed elsewhere, but here is an excellent summary if you still need one.

But the thing that keeps roiling my thoughts as more and more pundits predict a Scott Brown victory is the reaction from the right-wing media to this affair. Already they are positioning the race as a referendum on President Obama and health care. They are dismissing the failings of the Coakley campaign and elevating the role of Tea Baggers. If Brown prevails, starting tomorrow morning their will be a nausea inducing avalanche of rightist gloating and misrepresentations of what actually took place. In fact, The Fox Nation has already started:

This morning the Fox Nationalists are featuring a five course spectacle of Brown worship. Every story on their top headline graphic is about the race in Massachusetts. Apparently Haiti is old news and unworthy of recognition. The rest of the page reflects the same editorial incompetence. There are presently 25 stories about the senate race and only six on Haiti. Is the next senator from one U.S. state really that much more newsworthy than an ongoing crisis that may have killed hundreds of thousands and left hundreds of thousands more maimed, homeless, and clinging to life?

This is just the beginning of the Massachusetts media blitz. With a Scott win the election postmortems will be unleashed from every right-wing corner. We will have to endure the smug swagger of Bill O’Reilly, the juvenile pomposity of Glenn Beck, and the vacuous revelry of Sean Hannity. Rush Limbaugh will weigh in, along with Sarah Palin, Karl Rove, and every Republican officeholder. There will be commentaries and op-eds from every rightist rag in the nation, all heralding the death knell for Obama, health care and liberalism. It will be a bacchanal of conservative orgasmic delight.

And the worst part is that the reasons for the fading prospects for progressives are entirely misplaced. Democrats are not losing because voters just love them some Tea Baggin. They are losing because they have failed to fight for the ideals on which they campaigned. They have squandered an historic opportunity to bring the real change they espoused. They capitulated to GOP opponents in a search for bipartisanship that was never going to be reciprocated. They were punked in supreme fashion and now they come out looking like fools with nothing to show for their naivete.

The lesson from all of this, which Democrats will almost certainly misread, is not to move farther to the right in hopes of snagging some wavering moderates, but to revisit the election of 2008 and what made that election possible. Hope and Change dominated the dialogue, but there has been precious little of it by this administration and congress.

It would be bad enough if Scott Brown wins this election; it would be hard enough to accept that devolution of electoral intelligence; it would be sufficiently depressing to know that so many critical initiatives would become that much harder to achieve; but to have to bear, on top of that, the endless bluster of self-satisfied Tea Baggers and putrid pundits rubbing it in our faces for the next three years may be too much. If for no reason other than that, the people of Massachusetts need to get off their damn asses and protect the rest of us from the flurry of revulsion that will spew from these greedy, obstructionist, Dark-Ageists who want nothing more than to line their pockets and roll our nation back to its Puritan roots.

There’s got to be a morning after. And if Brown wins we will all be wishing for a lost weekend.