The Democratic Party is Anti-American: Deconstructing Tucker Carlson’s Noxious Trump-Fluffing

There are plenty of repugnant cretins on Fox News who devote themselves to distorting reality and misinforming their dimwitted audience. No one is more of a sycophantic disciple of Donald Trump than Sean Hannity. And Steve Doocy’s portrayal of an imbecile infatuated with the President is spot on. But Tucker Carlson has carved out his own domain as the master of indignant arrogance stewed in hypocrisy and logical dysfunction.

Fox News Tucker Carlson

On Thursday’s program Carlson set out to express a rare disappointment with his hero in the White House. It stemmed from Trump’s boneheaded assertion that guns should be confiscated from certain individuals without due process of law. That’s a position that was quickly denounced by all sides of the gun reform debate, including most fiercely by the NRA. But Carlson’s lecture (video below) was especially convoluted and managed to make Democrats the villains for what Trump said. What follows is an annotated transcript of the highlights.

“The alternatives to what we have now are scary and getting scarier. The Democratic Party is completely irresponsible and increasingly anti-American. They prefer illegal aliens to our middle-class. That’s true and it’s terrifying. Someone needs to defend the country from these people. Trump mostly does that.”

So Trump advocates violating the Constitution, but it’s Democrats who are anti-American? And Carlson’s deranged and insulting assertion that Democrats “prefer illegal aliens to our middle-class” is baseless and purposefully inflammatory. What’s true and terrifying is Carlson’s anti-American suggestion that the country needs to be defended from people he disagrees with.

“At one point the President said ‘The government should take the guns first, go through due process second.’ How honest do you want to be. Imagine if Barack Obama had said that. Just ignore due process and start confiscating guns. Obama would have been denounced as a dictator. We would have denounced him first. Trust me.”

Well, to be fair, Carlson and Fox News did denounce Obama as a dictator with predictable frequency, but never with justification. But his point was that Trump’s proposal for gun confiscation should receive the same criticism. Let’s see how that went.

“It’s important to remember that nobody should be tied to a person, but instead to principles. So with that in mind, do you think it’s worth just reminding the President – as we all need to be reminded sometimes – that there are deeper principles here?

How generous. Carlson won’t denounce Trump’s dictatorial raving, but politely remind him of the principles that he’s certain Trump has anyway. What happened to being the first to denounce dictatorship? That must not apply to your ideological crush with the long, flowing, golden locks (vainly covering his crusty bald spot). However, Carlson’s presumption of Trump’s true inner feelings were proven correct overnight as Trump tweeted that he’d made up with the NRA in an Oval Office tryst:

Here’s the video of Carlson’s Democrat-bashing, love letter to dictator Trump, if you can stomach it.

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

State-Run TV (aka Fox News) is Frantically Covering for Trump’s Repulsive Administration

The biggest news of the day on Wednesday was unarguably the resignation of yet another top member of Donald Trump’s White House. Staff secretary, Rob Porter, submitted his resignation (which Trump initially declined to accept) after allegations of domestic abuse by both of his ex-wives. The White House tried to downplay the matter with hopes of weathering this storm until pictures were released documenting the injuries he inflicted.

Donald Trump Fox News

Porter held a senior position that required a top-level security clearance that he was unable to obtain. Trump kept him on with temporary clearances for more than a year. It was the police records of his abuse that held up a permanent clearance and Trump, and his top aides, had to know this. All of that makes this a significant story that touches on issues ranging from criminal spousal assault to national security to the President’s judgment (or lack thereof).

So it is interesting to note how determined Fox News has been to bury this story. While CNN, MSNBC, the national broadcast news networks, and even most local news were responsibly reporting what happened, Fox News virtually ignored it. CNN reports that:

“The Trump administration is reeling over domestic violence allegations against a top White House aide, Rob Porter. But you might not know it if you watch Fox News, where the disturbing story has been largely, and conspicuously, absent. […]

“The matter was only discussed a handful of times on-air Wednesday by Fox News reporters and anchors, according to transcript searches.”

The entirety of Fox News’ primetime lineup (Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham) kept this story a deep, dark secret from their already ignorant viewers. And Trump’s favorite TV program, Fox and Friends, didn’t mention it once in their three hours of Trump-fluffing. Even during an interview with Trump senior advisor (and alternative facts disseminator), Kellyanne Conway, the “Curvy Couch” potatoes failed to ask about the scandal.

You might wonder what Fox News was reporting while they desperately swept the Porter matter under the rug. Not surprisingly, they were digging ever deeper into fake scandals and tabloid trash. They delved into some new FBI text messages that were of no significance whatsoever. They reanimated various Hillary Clinton “scandals” that never had any life to them in the first place. For instance, the Uranium One story was brought back despite having been totally debunked by Fox’s own Shepard Smith. And they filled whatever time was left with hokey paeans to Trump and praise for his ludicrous military parade sham.

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

That’s what passes for news on Fox News. It is a network that has transformed fully into America’s version of Pravda, a state-run TV outlet that reports only happy talk about their Dear Leader and smear campaigns directed at anyone with the temerity to dissent. And this example of making an important story completely disappear really drives home how far gone they are.

Tucker Carlson Says That In Order to Lead America You Must Love White Supremacists

With each and every day Fox News manages to sink lower into the sewer of bigotry and ignorance. After spending several days defending Donald Trump’s despicable degradation of Americans who migrated here from Haiti and Africa as “shithole countries,” the network’s most brazen hate-monger, Tucker Carlson, has overtly embraced the white supremacists that make up much of his audience.

Tucker Carlson Fox News

On Thursday night’s program (video below), Carlson led off with a tirade about immigration and the low-life moochers he considers to be destroying America. He disgustingly misrepresented DACA as protecting “people who snuck into our country and are demanding rights and money.” Never mind that they didn’t sneak into the country (they were children brought by their parents), and they are working people who provide for themselves and their families. They pay taxes and contribute to Social Security. They aren’t even eligible for federal financial aid, Medicaid, Obamacare, food stamps, etc. Carlson, as usual, doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

Carlson’s guest was ultra-rightist blowhard, Mark Steyn. An immigrant himself, he agreed with Carlson’s insulting characterizations of immigrants who don’t look like them. Steyn went on a blustering rant about how Democrats have a “preference for illegal immigrants over American citizens.” Steyn complained that liberal media and politicians say that…

“…the real problem is white supremacists in America. They’re the real monsters. Not these nice, hard working illegal immigrants. And that may be well and true. For the purposes of argument, let’s just say he’s right. It’s irrelevant. The white supremacists are American citizens. The illegal immigrants are people who shouldn’t be here. The organizing principle of nation-states is that they’re organized on behalf of their citizens, whether their citizens are cheerleaders or white supremacists or whatever. You’re stuck with them.

Really? Steyn is actually cuddling up to white supremacists just because they were fortunate enough to be born in America. And he prefers them to foreign born persons who actually represent the inclusive values of America. In his demented view they may be bigots, but they’re our bigots. And Carlson is totally on board with that view. In fact, he doesn’t think that an American leader can govern unless he loves this country’s racists:

“How can you lead a country whose population you despise? Would you be a good parent if you hated your kids? Would you be an effective officer if you didn’t care about the safety of your men? Doesn’t that kind of prima facie show that you’re not ready to lead if you don’t love the people you’re leading?”

That is the prevailing view on Fox News. It’s why Fox put Carlson in the lead off position of their primetime schedule. He sets the tone for the network’s editorial stance, which continues in primetime with noted bigots Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham. And while Fox News frequently airs blatantly prejudiced segments with openly bigoted guests, they are rarely as explicit as they were in this segment. It was a literal embrace of white supremacists who happen to be citizens by accident of birth. All while shamelessly maligning goodhearted people who choose to be American because they love the country and it’s values.

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

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.

Trump’s Fox News Fetish Could Be Making the Network a Security Risk Exploitable By Russia

The relationship between Donald Trump and Fox News has always been problematic. It represents the closest thing to state-run TV that the United States has ever had. The anchors and reporters on Fox serve as dutiful sycophants to the Trump administration, advancing his self-serving agenda and defending his every fault. While Trump repays Fox by promoting the network and its personalities with free advertisements on his Twitter feed and relentless attacks on their competition.

Fox News Commies

However, there may be more worrisome consequences from this political/media marriage of propagandistic convenience. Aki Peritz, a former CIA counterterrorism analyst, just wrote an op-ed for the Washington Post that raises some frightening possibilities that might result from the parasitic combination of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire and the dimwitted White House. The article, headlined “Foreign spies are watching — and probably targeting — Fox News Channel” delves into some reasonable speculation about how hostile foreign intelligence operations might benefit from monitoring – and possibly compromising – Fox News. What follows are some excerpts that provide a taste of how this problem could become a recipe for disaster:

“[I]f I were a spymaster in the employ of a hostile foreign service, I’d devote some significant effort to penetrating one specific private institution: Fox News Channel.”

“It’s no secret that Fox News — specifically, shows such as ‘Hannity,’ ‘Fox & Friends,’ ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight’ and ‘Justice with Judge Jeanine’ — have outsize influence on the inner workings of how certain policies are carried out by the U.S. government.”

“[H]ostile foreign intelligence services are probably consuming as much Fox News as President Trump does.”

“Trump’s unfiltered Twitter feed provides world intelligence operatives with ‘a real-time glimpse of a major world leader’s preoccupations, personality quirks and habits of mind’ – traits to be exploited in further dealings on the global stage. And what better way to determine what the president thinks – for the price of basic cable — than to watch selected Fox News programming?”

“A truly aggressive intelligence effort would not just monitor what’s being said on the network. It would target the on-air talent, as well as the folks behind the scenes who make the network’s programming possible: producers, bookers, associate producers, production assistants and the like. This might range from opening friendly contacts with these employees to outright recruitment.”

“Compared to government workers, Fox employees would make easy targets. That’s because they aren’t public officials — they’re news and entertainment people. Also, it’s television — full of trade secrets, big personalities and titanic egos. Most wouldn’t expect to be compromised by a hostile intelligence power, especially on American soil. Few, if any, have the sort of counterintelligence training the U.S. government administers to people in sensitive positions, because Fox employees are not the usual targets for intelligence operations. But the president’s continuing, very specific interest in the channel heightens their risk of being approached by a hostile government.”

Peritz specifically mentions the risk posed by covert operations aimed at Fox News staff. For instance, Sean Hannity is known to speak frequently with Trump. So bugging Hannity’s phone or office “could provide real-time intelligence on the American president and his thoughts.” The same could be true for others at Fox News. Trump’s chumminess with people at Fox has resulted in several of them getting jobs in the administration, including K.T. McFarland, Ben Carson, Sebastian Gorka, and Heather Nauert. Two of Fox’s current prime time lineup, Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham, were reported to have been candidates for press secretary.

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

The WaPo article is careful not to present this theory as anything more than informed speculation. But given what is known about how Russia conducts its spy operations, it would be prudent for all Fox News employees to be wary, even suspicious, about contacts from friendly strangers. That is, if they aren’t actively seeking out Russians for collusion on behalf of Trump, who is already deeply compromised.

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.

Fox News is Scaring Off Advertisers With Their Relentless Trump-Fluffing, Lies, and Racism

The Fox News chickens are coming home to roost. Or perhaps more accurately, they are flying the coop. Since its inception, Fox News has devoutly propelled a far right-wing agenda. They have steadfastly promoted conservative politicians and policies and shamelessly defended Republicans from any and all criticism. Their reward for such partisan bias was the devotion of glassy-eyed regressives whose loyalty produced high ratings and revenue.

Donald Trump Fox News

However, there was also a price to pay. In 2011 they discovered the hard way that wingnut extremism was not a sustainable business model. That’s when they were forced to fire Glenn Beck for venturing too far into bigotry and conspiracy theories. Beck’s audience was still substantial, but advertisers were shunning him like the plague. So Fox News eventually cut the cord.

Sadly for Fox News, they don’t seem to have learned anything from that disaster. In the years that followed, Fox has continued to spew propaganda and outright falsehoods in the service of GOP politics. And since the inauguration of Donald Trump the level of bombast and junk journalism has grown precipitously. In the past year Fox News has exceeded their wildest dreams as purveyors of state-approved disinformation. Primetime on the network is stuffed with Trumpeteers, and the rest of the day’s roster is no less reverential.

Recently Fox lost some of its star power due to sexual misconduct allegations. Their biggest attraction, Bill O’Reilly was fired after multiple woman came forward with stories of harassment and abuse. Eric Bolling was also dismissed for similar reasons. Megyn Kelly chose to leave due to her own experiences with deviants like O’Reilly and CEO Roger Ailes. However, while their replacements may be free of salacious scandal (for now), they are decidedly more extreme in their politics. Consequently, the advertising prospects for Fox News are once again in decline. TVNewser is reporting that:

“Fox News has taken the most significant hit with -17 percent less spend on news programming in September 2017 vs. September 2016. CNN also saw a small decrease, down -1 percent, while MSNBC was up +2 percent.”

The fact that Fox’s competitors didn’t suffer the profound losses that Fox did is evidence that the problems at Fox News are not due to some industry-wide weakness. It’s more likely due to the reluctance of advertisers to be associated with nutcases like Sean Hannity. There’s confirmation of that in the reporting of the unit cost for ads on Fox. Newcomer Tucker Carlson is pulling in $12,200 per ad. Hannity is getting only $8,500. What makes that significant is that Hannity is the higher rated program of the two. In fact, it’s the highest rated show on Fox News.

So Hannity is valued thirty percent less than a lower rated program. That can only be because ad buyers are scared off by Hannity’s increasingly lunatic conspiracies and brazen Trump-fluffing. The effect is likely leaking into other programs as well. As Carlson’s lunacy becomes more evident, expect his ad buys to shrink. Likewise, the Laura Ingraham Angle, which premieres next week, is already generating bad press.

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

All of this is very troubling for Fox News. But it’s heartening for America. One of the right’s favorite societal institutions, the free market, is demonstrating the folly of an alleged “news” network abandoning all pretenses of legitimate journalism. Will this force Fox News to change their ways. Doubtful. Fox’s management, Rupert Murdoch and family, have plenty of money with which to prop up their propaganda outlet. But they will be less able to disguise their deceitful intent, and will likely continue to shed advertisers and viewers.

Shut Down Fox News For Facilitating Sexual Abusers Like Bill O’Reilly – Says Fox News?

A breaking story from the New York Times on Saturday revealed just how ingrained the culture of sexual deviancy is at Fox News. And it underscores their complicity in the abhorrent acts of their employees and management. So far the company has terminated their CEO Roger Ailes and their biggest star Bill O’Reilly. In addition, other executives and on-air hosts like Bill Shine, Eric Bolling, and Jaime Horowitz were jettisoned under similar circumstances.

Bill o'Reilly Fox News

This new story in the Times discloses that Bill O’Reilly paid $32 million to settle a sexual harassment and assault suit in January of 2017. This was after O’Reilly and Fox News made previous settlements involving O’Reilly’s sexual misconduct totaling over $13 million to five other women over a 15 year period. That disclosure led to his termination from Fox News in April. However, following the January settlement, Fox News renewed his contract despite knowing about all of these legal payoffs. Apparently being a serial sexual predator wasn’t disqualifying to be a host on Fox News.

To put this in perspective, Fox News has argued that such behavior is so irredeemable that punishing the abuser isn’t enough. The company employing him should literally be shut down. That assessment was provided by Fox host and pundit Gregg Jarrett in both a column of the Fox website and on the air (video below). Jarrett, however, was referring to movie mogul Harvey Weinstein and his production company. But by simply replacing references to Weinstein with Fox News, the commentary retains its meaning while pointing to an entirely different but equally guilty company. See this annotated version of excerpts from Jarrett’s article:

The Weinstein Company Fox News should immediately shut-down its operations and permanently close its doors. […] The Weinstein Company Fox News surely knew it had a sexual predator at the helm, but did little to stop him. Instead, it willingly fostered and sustained an environment that permitted him to continue abusing women.”

The Weinstein Company Fox News approved a written contract which deliberately enabled Weinstein Ailes, O’Reilly, et al, to sexually harass women and allowed [them] to cover-up the abusive conduct by paying off [their] victims. […] Weinstein’s O’Reilly’s contract appears to encourage or condone his suspected illegal behavior.”

“Viewed another way, the company seems to have aided and abetted Weinstein Ailes, O’Reilly, and others. They handed [them] a piece of paper which granted [them] permission to victimize women with impunity.”

Well, that’s pretty clear. Jarrett is an attorney and should know that his argument remains consistent regardless of the perpetrators. So he is, in effect, advocating that Fox News be shut down. And he isn’t the only one at Fox to say so. Tucker Carlson delivered a rant on the subject last week that made similar points about Weinstein that were easily transferable to Fox News. And let’s not forget another sexual predator to whom these rebukes could apply. Donald Trump has been accused by at least a dozen women of sexual harassment or abuse. And he has even confessed to criminal assault in the infamous Access Hollywood videotape. There are pending federal investigations against Fox News, and Weinstein may soon be be facing the same.

So bring it on, Fox, Let’s see you report on Trump and O’Reilly with the same righteous outrage you direct at Weinstein. And how about shutting down your irreparable and unrepentant operation that has proven to be a hotbed of criminal sexual assault. Any company that can reward cretins like O’Reilly with rich contract renewals despite knowing that he’s a recidivist pervert doesn’t deserve to continue polluting America’s airwaves.

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

SRSLY? The Fox News Den of Sexual Predators Accuses Democrats of Enabling Weinstein

Leave it to Fox News to politicize anything, no matter how repulsive. The salaciousness of the Harvey Weinstein scandal must have been too much for them to pass up. So for the past several days they have been desperately trying to tar any and all Democrats with Weinstein’s disgusting behavior. It’s a tactic commonly used by the political bottom-feeders on the right, and especially by Fox News.

Fox News Tucker Carlson

On Wednesday night Tucker Carlson, arguably the most annoying man on television, delivered one of his typically sour monologues. In his opening segment he spun furiously in an effort to intertwine Democrats with a story whose focus ought to have been on the victims. But at Fox News it is always more important to cravenly exploit political biases. Carlson made sure to single out Hillary Clinton in his remarks because what’s more relevant than someone who holds no government office, or likely ever will? “Weinstein couldn’t have gotten away with any of this,” Carlson smeared, “without enablers like Hillary Clinton.” And then he unleashed this cognitive mess:

“Sexual abuse is epidemic in Hollywood. The people in charge have covered it up and made excuses for it. In each case protecting the powerful from the powerless and the abused. It is time for the federal government to get involved. The Department of Justice should launch an immediate investigation into Hollywood’s culture of systematic sexual abuse.”

First of all, sexual abuse is epidemic in America. It isn’t unique to Hollywood, and that assertion minimizes the scale of the problem. Which may be deliberate on Carlson’s part. More to the point, Carlson’s statement would actually be more appropriate if applied to Fox News. The list of their high-level perverts began with former CEO, Roger Ailes. Then Fox’s biggest star, Bill O’Reilly, finally succumbed to years of rumored sexual harassment. The president of Fox News, Bill Shine, was also dismissed under a cloud. As were Fox Sports President Jamie Horowitz, Fox News Latino VP, Francisco Cortes, and most recently, host Eric Bolling.

As Carlson noted, “The people in charge have covered it up and made excuses for it. In each case protecting the powerful from the powerless and the abused.” It wasn’t until their victims started coming out publicly that the network acknowledged the cesspool they were wallowing in. So if the Justice Department should launch an investigation, they might want to start with Fox.

Oh wait, they already did. A probe of the personnel and finances of Fox News was initiated in the final days of the Obama administration. The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, was in charge. That is, until Trump fired him.

On Wednesday the Daily Mail reported that Trump’s Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, has instructed the FBI to open a probe into the Weinstein affair. However, the Daily Mail is an ultra-conservative British tabloid, which makes this story somewhat suspicious. To date it has only been shared on other right-wing websites like Breitbart, Redstate, and Newsmax. But it’s premise is not implausible. Trump is known for taking positions based on something he just saw on Fox News. So if he watched Carlson make this proposal, he might well have directed Sessions to have the FBI initiate an investigation. And a good bootlicker like Sessions would surely have obeyed.

In his segment, Carlson complained that it took Hillary Clinton five days to denounce Weinstein. Donald Trump still hasn’t done so. The only comment he made was “I’m not surprised.” So apparently Trump has known that Weinstein is a sexual predator, but he never bothered to mention it. As for Carlson, his hypocrisy is off the charts. He works for a network that harbored some of the most despicable miscreants imaginable.

There is no evidence that Fox News has cleaned up its act. Carlson owes his program to the departure of Megyn Kelly, who left in part due to sexual harassment from Bill O’Reilly. And now Carlson’s show actually airs in O’Reilly’s old time slot. Meanwhile Sean Hannity has brought O’Reilly back into the Fox fold as his guest, without ever mentioning the reasons he was fired. So if Carlson had any integrity, he might want to reexamine who the real enablers are.

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

Watch the Dumbest Man on Fox News Fail to Grasp Russia’s Cyber War in Debate With Rob Reiner

Every day seems to bring a new revelation about Donald Trump’s unsavory connections to Russia. The most recent include the business relationship of his campaign manager, Paul Manafort, with a Kremlin-affiliated oligarch. And special counselor Robert Mueller is digging ever deeper into the White House’s personnel and documents. All of this has Trump in a panic. And that has resulted in more rabid, diversionary outbursts on Twitter attacking the media and Hillary Clinton.

Fox News Tucker Carlson Rob Reiner

The accelerated implosion of the Trump administration is also roiling his defenders at Fox News. Chief among the Trump-fluffers is Tucker Carlson. He has distinguished himself as a devoted disciple whose knee-jerk support is as predictable as a sunrise. On his Thursday night program he invited director Rob Reiner to discuss a new initiative to “Investigate Russia.” The Committee to Investigate Russia is a non-partisan group that brought together experts like James Clapper, Norman Ornstein, and David Frum, to inform the public and advocate for open, comprehensive investigations. They put out this public service announcement featuring Morgan Freeman:

After running a brief clip from that video, Tucker Carlson began his debate with Rob Reiner (video below) asking a question that demonstrates an acute disability to understand simple concepts:

Carlson: So we’re at war. How would you respond if President Trump took you seriously and sent a B-52 to St. Petersberg or blockaded the Gulf of Finland? Would you support that?

That’s an interesting question. Not because it raises substantive issues. But because it exposes Carlson as incapable of differentiating between a conventional war and a virtual one fought in cyberspace. He seems to think that the use of the word “war” can only be interpreted as involving soldiers and tanks. The notion of any other kind of international conflict is beyond his mental capacity. Any high school student would have no trouble with these concepts, but Carlson is hopelessly stumped.

The other interesting thing about the question was its insulting slap at Trump. Apparently Carlson thinks that Trump might react to Reiner’s talk of a cyber war and call out the bombers. Sadly, I think he could right about that. It’s the sort of simplistic behavior that is emblematic of Trump. Nevertheless, Reiner immediately sought to correct him, which led to this exchange:

Reiner: When we say we’re at we’re talking about a cyber war.
Carlson: It doesn’t make that clear. It just says where Morgan Freeman – who everyone trusts … we’re at war. So you don’t really believe we’re at war. Why are you saying it then?
Reiner: Well, because if you watch the entire video it talks about cyber warfare. It talks about how he was able to use the Internet and cyber tools to attack the democracy. Which is what they did.
Carlson: But shouldn’t you say somewhere in there ‘We’re not really at war. We’re just taking creative license. We’re just trying to get you all pumped up.’ It’s not really war. And we shouldn’t respond as you would if you were in a war. Why not just say that so you don’t confuse people?
Reiner: Well, as I say, if you watch the whole video you wouldn’t be confused about it.

Indeed. Carlson’s confusion is dumbfounding (with an emphasis on the “dumb”). Is there anyone with a functioning brain stem who doesn’t understand what it means to be in a cyber war? Is Carlson really this idiotic, or is he just being a douchebag? (You don’t have to answer that).

This discussion went on for another six-plus minutes with Carlson never getting the point. Reiner, to his credit, remained remarkably calm and tolerant of Carlson’s determined and deliberate ignorance. Carlson, on the other hand, continued to ask ridiculous questions that illustrated his intellectual infirmity. And the whole time his face was contorted into an expression that’s a mix of bewilderment and annoyance. Either that or he would start cackling at inappropriate times. It was prime Carlson. And it’s why he’s known as the dumbest man on Fox News.

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