Obama Tells Letterman that ‘If You Watch Fox News You Are Living on a Different Planet’

David Letterman is about to launch his new interview program “My Next Guest Needs No Introduction” on Netflix. It’s a much anticipated return for an American icon who has been greatly missed. The same thing could be said about his first guest, President Barack Obama.

Barack Obama David Letterman

A few excerpts from the interview are beginning to make the rounds on TV. Some are charming insights into his personal and family life. But one is a particularly timely commentary on the divisiveness within, and caused by, the media. Obama told Letterman that:

“One of the biggest challenges we have to our democracy is the degree to which we don’t share a common baseline of facts. What the Russians exploited, but it was already here, is we are operating in completely different information universes. If you watch Fox News, you are living on a different planet than you are if you listen to NPR. […] At a certain point you just live in a bubble and I think that’s why our politics are so polarized right now.”

Ya think? The current controversy surrounding Donald Trump’s vile and racist remarks about “sh*thole countries” like Haiti and those in Africa perfectly illustrates the information gap that divides Fox News from the rest of the world. While almost every other media outlet has properly reported Trump’s bigotry, and the well-deserved outrage it incited, Fox News had a completely different take on the matter. Here are a few of the defenses and justifications that are typical of the Trump-fluffing network:

  • Tucker Carlson: “President Trump said something that almost every single person in America actually agrees with.”
  • Rachel Campos-Duffy: “This is a 70-year-old man. He speaks in a certain way. It’s very impolitic. It’s very un-PC. And who among us hasn’t said something like that?”
  • Steve Doocy: “Somebody leaked it to the press, obviously to damage the president and ultimately to derail what they wanted to talk about, which was immigration.”
  • Jesse Watters: “This is how the forgotten men and women in America talk at the bar. This is how Trump relates to people.”
  • Steve Cortes: “He spoke in a way which any American would, who speaks plainly, who doesn’t speak in a lawyerly or political manner about these countries. That’s not racist. That’s being sensible.”

Not only are these Fox News cretins dismissing the rampant racism in Trump’s blackened heart, they are accusing every American of having exactly the same feelings. They think it’s perfectly alright to denigrate entire continents because, in their warped view, it’s what all Americans believe.

Thank goodness that isn’t true. But even to the extent that Trump’s base does harbor these repugnant thoughts (and, sadly, they do), that’s still not an excuse. The notion that it’s an asset for an American president to talk like the souse at the end of the bar is terribly misguided. Hopefully our national leaders are far better educated and prepared for the duties of governing and diplomacy than the slack-jawed yokels Fox News aims their programming at. The old polling inquiry about which candidate a voter would rather have a beer with was always an absurd measure of qualifications.

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

Donald Trump exemplifies the worst of the perverse concept that presidents should be “just like me.” They shouldn’t. They should be way better than me. But the alternate universe that Obama is describing exists on Fox News where they take this idea to its most reprehensible extremes. Fox’s audience will lick it up, thinking that they would be just as good at being president as anyone else. And the more Trump acts like a hate-filled moron who says whatever idiotic mental glitch pops into his diseased brain, the more the Fox cultists will feel enabled and empowered. And the more imperative it is to fight back against this looming devolution of society.

The Lies Fox News Told in 2017 That They (Kind of) Admitted or Corrected

Well, it’s that time of year. The time for end-of-year lists and collections of the best/worst whatever that we all endured for the past twelve months. The prospect of compiling such lists for 2017 seemed particularly daunting considering the wealth of material created by our sociopathic president, Donald Trump, and his PR division at Fox News. After all, no one was going to read through a 1,000 best/worst list for the year. And how could it be pared down to ten?

Donald Trump

So News Corpse found a category that would not be too overwhelming. Fox News has told literally thousands of lies this year. But they have only acknowledged or corrected a handful. That’s because they don’t practice the sort of journalistic ethics that a legitimate news enterprise normally would. In fact, their mission is to disinform and deceive. Consequently, they have no use for retractions or apologies. But News Corpse did document the rare occasions when Fox News was forced to at least make a comment about some blatantly false story that they leaked into the mediasphere. What follows are some stories that even Fox couldn’t pretend were true (kind of).

The Seth Rich Story

May 24: There is a conservative mythology that Democratic operative Seth Rich was assassinated by some nefarious lefty cabal because he leaked stolen DNC documents to Wikileaks. However, there’s no evidence of any such activity, and the police have concluded that the crime was a botched robbery. Nevertheless, Fox News, and especially Sean Hannity, repeatedly advanced the ludicrous conspiracy theory.

The Comey Files

July 11: Steve Doocy of Fox and Friends falsely reported that former FBI director James Comey made documents public that were classified as “Top Secret.” But Doocy had to retract that report the following day because it wasn’t true. Donald Trump retweeted the original false story, but never corrected the tweet.

Bogus Baghdadi

July 24: Fox News contributor Gen. Tony Thomas accused the New York Times of allowing a terrorist leader to escape. Then Fox weekend host Pete Hegseth elaborated on the charge that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi would’ve been captured if not for the Times. The Times responded with proof that Fox’s story was false, but Fox continued reporting the same lies, as did Trump.

Smearing the Good Lawyers

September 9: Fox’s Greg Gutfeld rattled off some falsehoods that portrayed the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as charlatans and associates of violent nutjobs. He accused them of financial improprieties and failing to perform the legal they work that is their mission. The SPLC responded with a letter proving Gutfeld’s remarks to be false. But Fox ignored the letter and never corrected their libelous story.

The Verdict is In

December 5: Fox and Friends co-host Pete Hegseth erroneously reported that MSNBC failed to cover the not guilty verdict in the Kate Steinle murder trial. […] The false reporting by Hegseth was uncorrected for at least twelve hours despite the network being informed of the error.

Please, No Moore

December 10: A Fox News headline falsely asserted that “Roy Moore accuser admits she forged part of yearbook inscription attributed to Alabama Senate candidate.” There was just one little problem with that. The accuser, Beverly Young Nelson, never admitted any such thing.


It’s interesting to note that Fox News made a big deal about a few incorrect reports during the year by ABC News or CNN. These were portrayed as proof that the entirety of the media was fake. Many of Fox’s pundits went so far as to accuse the press of making these mistakes deliberately. And of course, that was Trump’s standard approach as he labeled everything “fake news.” However, Fox went to great lengths to avoid mentioning any of their own falsehoods when discussing this subject. They’re pure as the driven snow. It’s the same way they treat the subject of sexual abuse. Harvey Weinstein and Al Franken are always brought up as examples, but Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly are forgotten figures from some distant past.

To be sure, the list above doesn’t represent the full picture of Fox’s dishonesty. They continue to press flat out lies about the Uranium One deal, which their own “hard news” correspondent, Shepard Smith, utterly debunked. And Fox News is obsessed with tarnishing the reputation of the FBI and special counsel Robert Mueller. If you watched nothing but Fox News you would come away believing that Mueller was an unscrupulous Democrat determined to crush Donald Trump with manufactured tales of collusion. Never mind that in reality he is a life-long Republican selected by a Republican Acting Attorney General, who was appointed by Trump.

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

Next year is almost certainly going to be more of the same. Fox News will defend Trump from any and all criticism, while writing new talking points for him to tweet. Trump will adopt Fox’s rhetoric and disgorge it on Twitter and to friendly reporters. Then Fox will cover what Trump said bringing the circle to a close, ready to recycle in an endless loop of lying. And on that depressing note, News Corpse would like to wish everyone a very Happy and Healthy New Year.

Trump Shill: If You Get Your News From Fox News You Probably Like the GOP Tax Scam

Donald Trump and the Republicans in Congress are hurtling headlong into passage of tax bill that will materially alter the tax code in ways that harm most Americans. It is flagrantly biased in favor of corporations and the wealthy with toxic provisions that will sabotage healthcare and cripple Social Security and Medicare. The GOP refused to hold hearings on the bill or even allow Democrats to review it prior to voting. Much of it was written by corporate lobbyists. And without any justification for their haste, Republicans are ramming it through before the already strong opposition becomes impossible to ignore.

foxnews-mulvaney

As usual, whenever Republicans require a boost in propaganda they turn to Fox News. They know that they can present whatever bullshit they want and that there will be no one to challenge their lies. They took advantage of that Thursday morning when they sent Trump’s director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mick Mulvaney, to the studios of Fox and Friends to pimp the tax bill. He received precisely the welcome that he expected as co-host Steve Doocy offered up a softball for Mulvaney to hit out of the park. Surprisingly, Mulvaney took a wild swing that landed in foul territory (video below):

Doocy: People don’t like to pay taxes so you would think that this would be a good story for you. And yet, Mick, the Quinnipiac poll came out and shows that fifty-five percent of Americans don’t like it, as opposed to twenty-six percent who do. Can you explain to me why people don’t like the idea of a tax cut?
Mulvaney: Sure, because if you turn to any channel besides this one, all you’re going to hear is bad news about this particular bill. […] No one is focusing, as you folks do, on what’s good for people in this bill. So if you get your news here, you probably like it because your focused on what’s good for you. But if not, you don’t.

So the only reason Mulvaney had for people not liking the bill was that they weren’t watching enough Fox News. Or worse, they drifted from their “news” teet at Fox and were exposed to actual facts and honest scrutiny. Doocy was taking a chance by citing the Quinnipiac poll which he correctly quoted as showing a historic disapproval rating, especially for something being pitched as a tax cut. The poll provided an explanation for that which Fox News left out entirely. Nearly seventy percent of those polled said the bill favors the wealthy and only twenty-one percent think that it will help the middle class. In other words, people can see through the GOP spin and recognize a fraud when it’s right in front of their faces.

However, what was most interesting about Mulvaney’s response was that he explicitly admitted that Fox News was a pit of partisan bias where viewers would get only the conservative perspective peddled by the White House. He praised the “Curvy Couch” potatoes for being sycophantic hucksters upon whom he could rely to spew the government line. Just like state-run TV outlets are supposed to do. Heaven forbid that the American people might ever get an unbiased analysis of this bill that contained actual facts derived from independent experts. That isn’t what Fox News was created for, and it surely isn’t what they did this morning. Welcome to the American Pravda, now proudly out of the propaganda closet.

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

Fox News Whines Pitifully: Isn’t Country Music Supposed To Be Conservative?

Wednesday night saw the return of The annual Country Music Awards. It was a star-studded affair that featured the best and brightest of the genre. The program was a huge success in the ratings, topping the primetime lineup for the evening and hitting a three year high.

Fox News CMA

One of the highlights of the program was a duet between Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood. Their rendition of “Before He Tweets” was a lighthearted mockery of Donald Trump and his fetish with Twitter (video below).

So guess what? The “Curvy Couch” potatoes at Fox and Friends were bitterly distraught at the prospect of having lost country music to the evil liberals and anti-Trump media. They lamented over the unspeakable act of disrespectfully taunting their Dear Leader with a comical farce. The whine-fest began with a plaintive moan from co-host Steve Doocy:

“Remember the olden days when football wasn’t political, and so many things weren’t political? Well now, as it turns out, the CMAs have gotten very political.”

Brian Kilmeade made the painful observation that maybe “new country is a lot less conservative than old country.” And Ainsley Earhardt wondered “Where’s Dolly? Where’s Garth Brooks? They don’t get political.” Then she added wistfully “Really? It’s hitting country music now? Isn’t country music supposed to be conservative?”

These pop culture authorities apparently think that musical genres have a God-given political affiliation. Any divergence from that is sacrilege. And just the thought of it sends them into nostalgic yearnings for a bygone era that only existed in their imaginations. Don’t these new country heathens know that right-wingers own their musical biases? Hell, if they’re gonna act like liberals they should just go to MTV and play the Devil’s rock music.

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

Trump Echoes Fox News to Politicize Terrorist Attack in New York and Falsely Blame Democrats

Sadly, another terrorist attack has taken place in New York City. This tragedy has taken the lives of eight innocent victims and injured a dozen more. At times like these Americans are called upon to unite against such senseless brutality and to come together in support of those affected. It’s a manifestation of the strength and resolve that we have to endure and prevail.

Donald Trump Fox News

However, it is also sad that Donald Trump doesn’t share these principles. The President’s first reactions to the carnage were blathering assertions that what had just happened in America can’t happen in America. But what he later sought to convey, after having slept on it, was even more repulsive. In a series of brazenly political tweets, he declined to criticize the terrorist or the extremist views that inspired him. Instead, Trump lashed out at fellow Americans in Congress. Specifically, Senate Minority Leader (and the representative of the state that was attacked) Chuck Schumer and Democrats in general:

It’s nauseating that Trump appears to be more upset with Sen. Schumer than with the terrorist. What’s more, he is predictably misrepresenting the truth. The Diversity Visa Lottery program was supported by Schumer as an amendment to the Immigration Act of 1990. That bill passed in the Senate by a whopping 89 to 8 vote and was signed into law by George H.W. Bush. It was also supported by some notable Republicans including Chuck Grassley, Orrin Hatch, and current Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. Funny, Trump didn’t attack any of them.

Something else Trump left out was that in 2013 a bipartisan group of senators, including Schumer, proposed to eliminate the Diversity Visa program. Known as the “Gang of Eight,” they offered a compromise immigration reform bill that would have ended the lottery. The bill was killed by conservative Republicans in the House.

Trump’s comments fly in the face of his response to last month’s terrorist attack in Las Vegas. After that horrific mass murder Trump and the GOP were aghast that anyone would talk about solutions to gun violence. And after the murder in Charlottesville, Virginia, by neo Nazis, Trump declared that he couldn’t talk about it until he had the facts. But just a few hours after the attack in New York, while the investigation was still in progress, Trump was already pushing his partisan agenda and lying about his political foes.

Not surprisingly, it’s easy to figure out where Trump got these talking points. He was obviously watching Fox News. In the hours following the attack, Fox News hosts and pundits were pushing their biases out onto the airwaves. And their stridently anti-Muslim bigotry was on full display. Here are some examples:

  • Tucker Carlson: It seems obviously tied to immigration, why is the country unwilling to have that conversation, to face that?
  • Pamela Geller on Hannity: The fact is Muslim immigration means more Islamic terrorism. It’s just that simple.
  • Laura Ingraham: Why must we take the risk, knowing that we can’t tell if an Islamic individual is going to be radicalized?
  • Zuhdi Jasser on Tucker Carlson Tonight: [Americans] are in denial if we don’t believe that nonviolent Islamism is a precursor to militant Islamism.

Trump’s TV was typically tuned in to Fox and Friends. That’s where he got the Schumer connection, which was not even confirmed at the time. Co-host Steve Doocy said so when he stated that:

“According to Mark Levin, and I looked online, and there are a bunch of websites that say that Chuck Schumer was one of the sponsors. We have not independently confirmed that through our brain room yet.”

Let’s just set aside the dubious assertion that Fox News has a “Brain Room.” The network was admittedly disseminating rumors in order to blame political adversaries for a terrorist attack. And that was enough for Trump to regurgitate it and give Fox News credit. Doocy’s colleague, Brian Kilmeade, contributed to this deliberate disinformation. Undoubtedly, this is the first time Trump had connected the visa lottery to the attack:

“All right, let’s talk about how he got here. He applied to a lottery system, the diversity visa program […] And congratulations, you win the lottery and then eight people are run over in this case eventually down the line because of this.”

For the record, the Diversity Visa Lottery program was not a free pass to American citizenship. Recipients had to be vetted by all of the same criteria as any other immigrant applying for entry. They are also subject to the same requirements and waiting periods. Kilmeade’s description was patently dishonest and purposefully misleading.

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

The fact that Trump relies on the disinformation and lies of Fox News is appalling and dangerous. They clearly don’t have the credibility to be the foundation for government policy. But Trump puts more faith in them than he does in the intelligence agencies he oversees. This morning he called his own Justice Department “a joke and a laughingstock.” The result is ignorant policies that are infused with noxious racism and bigotry. Not to mention the corrosive division that is sown by a President who regards his political opponents, and the media, as worse than our nation’s real enemies.

How Far Has Fox News Crawled Up Trump’s A$$? They’re Praising Trump’s Deal With Democrats

For anyone who’s still wondering whether or not Fox News is a brazen propaganda outfit devoted to propping up Donald Trump, you can put your doubts to rest. On Thursday morning they demonstrated that they will go to any lengths to praise Dear Leader. Even when he’s violated their most precious principles.

Fox News Trump

The subject of Trump’s agreement on legislation to raise the debt limit and fund relief for Hurricane Harvey came up on Fox and Friends. Republicans were anticipating a bill that would put off further debt limit matters until after next year’s congressional election. Democrats sought a much shorter, three month period. Surprisingly, Trump sided with the Democrats. Some pundits surmised that this was evidence of Trump embracing bipartisanship. But it’s more likely that he was just punishing Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan for their recent failures to advance his agenda.

However, it’s the reaction by the hosts of his favorite TV show that is truly a revelation. There was a time when Fox News could be depended on to push whatever Republican scheme was being peddled. The network’s loyalty was to party over personality. That appears to be a thing of the past. With the election of Donald Trump the Fox News mission seems to have shifted somewhat. They are now committed to the cult of the alleged personality of Trump. The blathering of the Fox and Friends crew made that abundantly clear (video below):

Steve Doocy: The president, not wanting a fight, apparently said, “That’s the deal I’m going to take right now because we’ve got tax reform and other stuff we have got to do right now.”

Ainsley Earhardt: Good for him. He’s doing this for the folks that are affected by [Hurricane] Harvey.

Two things to note here. First, they suddenly think it’s laudatory that Trump is backing down from a fight. Prior to this cave in, they specifically admired his pugilistic tendencies and called everyone else snowflakes. Secondly, the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts were going to be getting these funds regardless. That was not in contention. And then they continued:

Pete Hegseth: Well some conservatives are upset … Big time. But you know what? This is a clear shot at Mitch McConnell and [Paul Ryan: “Hey guys, if you can’t get things done, then, listen, I’ll go work with the Democrats” […]

Hegseth: I think it’s very strategic from this president. Clear out the underbrush of the stuff that could be contentious, that Washington likes to fight about, so you can clear the deck to fight for the stuff that really matters. […]

Earhardt: Isn’t it refreshing to see them work together though? … isn’t that the art of the deal? Isn’t that what they do?

Doocy: It’s the art of the Dems.

“The stuff that really matters?” Apparently they don’t think that hurricane victims, or the full faith and credit of the United States, really matter. Because they just want to get that out of the way. But they are conceding that working with Democrats is the right thing to do. Previously they would have gone into hysterics at the thought of it. They would have branded anyone Republican who did so a RINO (“Republican in Name Only”), and called for his defeat. And don’t even ask what they mean by “art of the Dems.” They probably just thought it sounded cute.

So is this a pivot toward bipartisan cooperation in Congress? Or is it unvarnished idolatry of their presidential messiah? Considering that they still oppose everything that Democrats stand for, it’s hard to see peace breaking out on Capital Hill. Trump, Republicans, and Fox News, still want to kill ObamaCare. They still want to cut taxes for the wealthy. Their commitment to building a border wall is still rock solid (even if the wall/fence isn’t). They remain convinced that climate change is a hoax. They’re almost giddy about deporting DREAMers.

Consequently, the only conclusion is that Fox News is taking this position because it’s the one that Trump has taken. And they don’t want to to seen as disagreeing with Hair Drumpf. Which means that Fox News is determined to be steadfastly faithful to their Chief Oval Officer. And regardless of what diversions he takes from doctrinaire conservatism, they will blindly follow. That’s a recipe for totalitarian disaster.

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

Kellyanne Conway on Fox News Complains That the Media Isn’t ‘Afraid Enough’ of Donald Trump

The Queen of Alternative Facts, Kellyanne Conway, has been absent from the public eye for a while. But now she has returned to make an appearance on Fox News (of course). And she didn’t disappoint in the delivery of her unique brand of shilling for her boss, Donald Trump.

Kellyanne Conway

Conway was interviewed on Trump’s favorite TV show Fox and Friends (video below). The President has called it “the most honest show on television.” And it’s clear as to why he holds that opinion. They will lie relentlessly for him no matter the subject. And it’s why White House spokespersons appear almost exclusively on Fox News. They know they can get away with saying anything and not be subject to any challenge or criticism. For instance, Conway started right out of the gate slamming the media:

“There’s a huge disconnect between what the media are telling Americans what is important to them and what Americans are telling your pollsters and their pollsters and all of us what is important to them.”

That makes literally zero sense. What the media is telling Americans about what is important comes directly from the the pollsters. And virtually every poll shows Trump floundering personally, and his agenda in tatters. Undeterred, Conway continues:

“I think the media are obsessed with style. I saw a poll this morning. Forty-seven percent of Americans say the media are trying to impede the President’s progress on the agenda as opposed to just report the facts. And Gerry Baker at the Wall Street Journal just yesterday came out and said ‘Listen, you’ve gotta cover this as reporters. This has become opinion commentary disguised at reporting.’ Particularly when the President mentions the media.”

First of all, the poll Conway is referring to is by Rasmussen Reports, an unabashedly biased firm that spins everything to the far right. Secondly, Conway citing the editor-in-chief of Rupert Murdoch’s flagship newspaper as a source of factual reporting is ludicrous. Especially because the quote she highlighted came from an email that has angered the Journal’s staff. Some were so upset that they turned to CNN to vent their frustration:

“At the time, some staffers told CNNMoney they believed that Baker was going out of his way to be deferential to Trump in order to maintain access to the White House and proximity to power. Staffers also chafe at Baker’s insistence on conducting the interviews with Trump himself, rather than letting the paper’s journalists take the lead.”

When reporters at a conservative paper accuse their editorial peers of being “deferential to Trump” you have a real problem. Many have them long demonstrated such deference, but apparently this editor has gone too far, even for the Journal. And they are also disturbed by his habit of usurping their duties when it comes to presidential interviews.

But Conway was only beginning to hit her stride. Answering a question that didn’t involve the media, Conway found a way to resume her attack on the free press. Co-host Steve Doocy’s raised the comments of former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, with regard to Trump’s mental stability. On CNN Clapper described Trump’s condition as “downright scary and disturbing.” And he asked how much longer the country would have to “endure this nightmare.” And Conway replied (skip to 7:50 in the video):

Doocy: A couple nights ago on television, [Clapper] said he wondered whether or not the president was fit to be president, fit to serve. If James Clapper is watching right now, what’s your message to him?

Conway: It’s such an absurd analysis, playing armchair psychiatrist. It’s not just him. It’s a lot of people on TV.

I’m old enough to remember when news stations reported the news and didn’t just have a parade of pundits going out there and opinionating and rendering their opinions and pontificating and conjecturing. And I think it leads to analysis like this, because people end up with very little to say. They are not compelled. They are not forced. Nobody demands that they actually report facts and figures. This is way over the line. You know, the media and other opinion figures, they were way too afraid of President Obama and his administration. They’re not afraid enough here.

It’s jaw-droppingly hysterical that Conway is complaining about pundits “opinionating” to the propagandists at Fox News. The “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends trail only Sean Hannity as Fox’s premiere Trump-fluffers.

More importantly, Conway is actually advocating for some kind of government control of the press. Her notion that journalists should be “forced” to report her alternative facts is contrary to the tenets of the Constitution. She and her White House cohorts are not the arbiters of what is real or fake news. And if America wants state-sponsored reporting, they already have Fox News.

Furthermore, the media should never be afraid of any president, and no president should deliberately intimidate the press. But that’s exactly what Trump has been doing. He is not merely offering criticism. His childish taunts that reporters are sick, dishonest, and bad people who hate America, amounts to overt threats. They could easily lead to violence against journalists who are just doing their job.

When Trump called the media “the enemy of the American people,” he effectively gave permission to his crackpot disciples to take the necessary action to defend the country from its “enemies.” Hopefully Conway and Trump will not get their wish to make the media afraid of Trump. And hopefully nobody gets hurt.

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

LOCK ‘EM UP: Fox News Leaks Classified Info Based on Anonymous Sources – Trump Retweets

The White House recently embarked on a campaign to flush out the throngs of leakers in their midst. Attorney General Jeff Sessions held a press briefing to announce that anyone caught leaking would face stiff consequences. So it’s interesting that this warning is already being ignored by a surprising offender.

Fox News Donald Trump

On Donald Trump’s favorite TV show, Fox and Friends, co-host Steve Doocy interviewed U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley. In the course of their conversion Doocy let slip some information he obtained from a story on Fox News. The story revealed that U.S. satellites had detected North Korea loading anti-ship cruise missiles on a patrol boat. That, apparently, was not information approved for public dissemination. And Haley let Doocy know that in no uncertain terms (video below):

DOOCY: Ambassador, on the front page of foxnews.com right now there is a story that apparently the intel community has picked up anti-ship cruise missiles were being loaded onto a patrol boat or patrol boats in North Korea. What can you tell us about that?
HALEY: I can’t.
DOOCY: Why?
HALEY: I can’t talk about anything that’s classified. And if that’s in the newspaper that’s a shame. But –
DOOCY: You have no reason to believe that’s not accurate though?
HALEY: I have no reason to comment on it.
DOOCY: (Laughing) OK.
AINSLEY EARHARDT: That shouldn’t be in the newspaper? Is that another leak I guess?
HALEY: You know, it’s one of these things, I don’t know what’s going on. But, I will tell you it’s incredibly dangerous when things get out into the press like that. You are not only just getting a scoop on something, you are playing with people’s lives. And this has got to stop. Whatever the leaks are coming from, if somebody thinks they are getting power or fame from it, all you are doing is putting Americans in danger.

Haley was adamant in her first response that she could not answer Doocy’s questions. But that didn’t stop him from pressing her further. She reiterated her intention to refrain from commenting. Doocy thought that was funny. Haley had to school him on the serious nature of the data he was pushing her to reveal.

As if it weren’t bad enough that Fox News was disclosing classified information, there was another culprit with loose fingertips. Trump, as usual, was watching Fox and Friends this morning. He retweeted three separate stories that he had seen on the broadcast. One of them was the story about North Korea with the classified data. So Trump was participating in the leaking of information that his own U.N. ambassador warned was “incredibly dangerous,” and “playing with people’s lives.” What’s more, he was propagating info obtained from anonymous sources. Recall, Trump’s position on the use of sources who are not identified in news reports:

It is endlessly perplexing that Trump still gets his intelligence data from Fox News. Apparently he is unaware of the resources he has at his disposal within the government he allegedly manages. Had he contacted his National Security Advisor or the CIA, he might have been cautioned as to the sensitive nature of the data he was about to publish. But that’s too much to ask this notoriously ignorant and reckless so-called president.

The only question now is whether the Department of Justice will follow through on their threat to prosecute anyone found to be leaking. This past weekend, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appeared on Fox News Sunday. He told Chris Wallace that he would prosecute whoever was discovered to be violating the law. He specifically that included members of Congress and the White House. In this case, Donald Trump is unambiguously guilty. And this is not the first time that Trump has breached this legal directive. If the DoJ expects to be taken seriously they need to investigate Trump’s leaks and prosecute if warranted. Otherwise, they will have no credibility to prosecute any other alleged leakers.

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

Fox News Calls for Trump Dictatorship and More Suffering After ObamaCare Repeal Fails

Late Thursday night the Republican effort to kill ObamaCare met its demise – for the time being. Despite having the majority, the GOP-run Senate couldn’t pass their last ditch scheme to repeal the Affordable Care Act. It’s a dream they’ve salivated over for seven years without doing anything about it. Now their incompetence and callous disregard for people’s well-being has been dealt a well-deserved loss. The vote was 49-51, with Republicans Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and John McCain joining all the Democrats.

Fox News Donald Trump

True to form, Fox News went into a total meltdown following the vote. They appeared on the verge of a severe depressive episode. Immediately after the vote Fox News aired the crestfallen remarks of a gloomy Sen. Mitch McConnell in full. Next to speak on the Senate floor was Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer. But Fox didn’t air any of his speech. Instead they cut to a phone-in analysis from daytime anchor Bret Baier. The woman anchoring last night interjected that “It’s a sad day for America.” Fair and balanced.

Perhaps the most repulsive reaction to the GOP’s aborted repeal came from Jesse Watters, co-host of The Five. In a post-vote rant Watters had the audacity to advocate for a Trump tyranny:

“A lot of people wish President Trump was a dictator, maybe we could repeal Obamacare. It would be a lot easier that way.”

He’s right. A lot of people do wish that Trump was a dictator. Starting with Donald Trump. Then add most of the people on Fox News, Trump’s most stalwart fans among the white supremacist community, and the dimwits who still support him after his treasonous betrayal of the country to Russia’s dictator, Vladimir Putin. Fascist minds think alike.

Watters’ reckless comments are emblematic of the dangers that an authoritarian, megalomaniac like Trump represent. The fact that he can get crackpots on Fox News to openly advocate for his elevation to dictator is frightening. But Watters wasn’t alone in making appallingly stupid comments in the hours of grief for Fox. His colleagues at Fox and Friends chimed in with idiotic outbursts of their own. Steve Doocy, always the cock-eyed optimist, found something positive to console the loser President. Doocy said the repeal failure was “good news” for Trump because “It’s gonna continue to be ObamaCare and people who have been suffering will continue.”

Well, isn’t that good news? Republicans like nothing better than seeing people suffer. Trump obviously agrees because he tweeted again his intention to “let ObamaCare implode.” That, of course, would produce unconscionable and unnecessary suffering for millions of Americans. And Trump is doing it on purpose. In fact, he is deliberately sabotaging healthcare for millions. Doocy even admitted that Trump “wants [Obamacare] to fail.” He’s rooting for pain and sickness rather than for the people he’s sworn to protect and defend.

Finally, Brian Kilmeade demonstrated the ignorance that is rampant on Fox News. While complaining about the loss in the Senate, Kilmeade sarcastically congratulated the Democrats who prevailed. In a boneheaded snark he said “Congratulations. The healthy people are paying for the sick people.” You don’t say? What Kilemeade has just done is define in very literal terms exactly what health insurance is. In fact, it’s exactly what all insurance is. But he’s casting it in a negative light as if it should be repudiated.

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

And with that Kilmeade has also demonstrated the pitiful stupidity of Fox News that infects and warps the brains of their glassy-eyed viewers. That’s why it’s so hard to have a rational debate with any of them. They are damaged beyond repair, and they cling to the defects and the lies they are fed by Fox. Fox News has led America into an era that cheers a President who says that he “loves the poorly educated.” Of course he does. No one else would believe his bull. That’s why he is destroying the Department of Education from within. And he’s lucky to have Fox News to make sure there are as many poorly educated Americans as possible.

Fox and Friends Lies About New York Times Calling Them ‘The Most Powerful TV Show in America’

Another morning, another flurry of dishonest reporting by Fox News and their “Curvy Couch” potatoes at Fox and Friends. While pretending to read the newspapers spread out on the coffee table, co-host Steve Doocy made a fake discovery. He held the paper so that the cameras got a good look at an advertisement on the back page. What viewers saw was a full page ad touting Fox and Friends.

Fox News Steve Doocy

The ad was obviously paid for by Fox News to promote the network and the program. It featured a quote attributed to the New York Times saying that Fox and Friends is “the most powerful TV show in America.” Doocy’s faux surprise was echoed by his co-hosts Ainsley Earhardt and Brian Kilmeade. They were pretending to be excited by the praise from an unexpected source:

Doocy: This program, the program you’re watching, according to the New York Times, is the most powerful TV show in America.
Earhardt: You know why Steve? Because we have the best viewers.

Earhardt would have been more correct if she had said “because we have the best viewer.” Because the only person in their audience that they play to is Donald Trump. That point was confirmed when that viewer proudly tweeted the same message Doocy was boasting about:

There’s just one problem. The Fox News crew horribly mangled what the New York Times was saying in their article. Calling the relationship between Fox and Friends and Trump a “Two Way Mirror,” the Times analyzed the perverse relationship between the TV program and the President. The full quote from the Times said:

“Suddenly, for no other reason than its No. 1 fan, it is the most powerful TV show in America,”

In context, the Times was criticizing both Trump and Fox for clinging to one another in a mockery of journalism. They went on to portray Fox’s posture toward Trump as a “Romper Room-style” broadcast intended to flatter our ego-obsessed, narcissistic president:

“President Trump is the show’s subject, its programmer, its publicist and its virtual fourth host. The stars offer him flattery, encouragement and advice. When he tweets, his words and image appear on a giant video wall. It’s the illusion of children’s TV — that your favorite show is as aware of you as you are of it — except that for Mr. Trump, it’s real.”

That’s an entirely different characterization than the one of pride that Doocy and company presented. And let’s not forget that Fox News paid for these ads. It’s an advertising campaign that deliberately distorts the quote they featured in the ad. And it’s further evidence of their aversion to ethics and truth. The author of the Times’ article, James Poniewozik, tweeted his own somewhat snarky thoughts about this saying that he was, “Excited to see @realDonaldTrump endorse my thesis that F&F’s weird childlike sway over him makes it hugely powerful! Thanks, POTUS!”

What’s more, why does Trump and Fox and Friends care what the New York Times has to say about them? Don’t they consider it fake news? In which case, Fox and Friends is not the most powerful TV show in America. And there is something peculiar about Fox News buying ad space in the Times. Trump has appended the word “failing” to every mention he makes of the paper. Fox News has adopted the same juvenile (and false) habit. But with this campaign they are helping the Times to be even more financially successful.

The Times’ article closed by noting that Fox and Friends has a unique mission with regard to Trump. They describe him as “the superfan in the White House who sees it as ‘Fox & Friend’ — singular.” That has been borne out by the numerous times that Trump has watched the show and, shortly after, tweeted what he saw. He has also promoted the program in dozens of tweets that amount to free publicity from the White House. The value of those tweet-vertisements has been put as high $5 million. So there is clearly a parasitical relationship between Fox News and Trump that benefits both. And we can expect that, and the lies, to continue for the foreseeable, lamentable future.

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