HUH? GOP Concedes ‘Overwhelming’ Proof Trump is Guilty – of Being ‘Inappropriate’

The writing is on the proverbial wall. It appears that Republicans in the Senate are poised to conclude their cover up of Donald Trump’s criminal behavior. The vote on whether to allow the testimony of additional witnesses (such as Trump favorite, John Bolton) will likely fail. That would make this first impeachment in history not to include witness testimony. This travesty of justice was set in place with the announcement by retiring Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander that he would vote against further witnesses and documents.

Donald Trump, Presidenty

Alexander’s principle argument is that the decision to remove Trump from office should be made by the American people at the ballot box, not by the Senate. If so, he needs to explain why the Framers included impeachment in the Constitution. And his argument doesn’t even address the prospect of an election being subverted by a president who intends to cheat, making it impossible for the people’s choice to prevail.

However, Alexander isn’t even being asked to remove Trump from office yet. The question at present is only whether to permit the introduction of new witnesses and documents. Alexander could still decide later not to remove Trump. In the meantime, he’s preventing the American people, who he thinks should make the decision, from hearing all of the evidence. So he’s advocating that the people make an uninformed decision. That’s something that Trump will surely appreciate, because it’s what he does all the time.

Alexander’s full statement on his decision is a bundle of hypocrisies and contradictions. he actually concedes that “the House managers have proved” their case with “a mountain of overwhelming evidence.” So Alexander has seen sufficient evidence to declare Trump guilty. “There is no need for more evidence,” says Alexander, “to prove that the president asked Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden and his son, Hunter,” and that “There is no need for more evidence to conclude that the president withheld United States aid.”

In other words, there is no need for further evidence to establish the quid pro quo that Trump used to coerce Ukraine, but has denied repeatedly, despite having actually admitted it on national TV. Alexander was not alone in his assessment of Trump’s guilt. Senators Toomey, Collins, Romney, Murkowski, and Portman are among those who have considered approving more testimony (but will likely vote no anyway). However, Alexander’s vote appears to be based on something entirely different than the facts that he himself has presented:

“It was inappropriate for the president to ask a foreign leader to investigate his political opponent and to withhold United States aid to encourage that investigation. But the Constitution does not give the Senate the power to remove the president from office and ban him from this year’s ballot simply for actions that are inappropriate.”

Really? Does Alexander know what the word “inappropriate” means? For the record, it means “not suitable or proper in the circumstances.” For example, cussing in front of children. Or wearing sweats to funeral. Or bragging that you can grab women by their genitals because you’re a celebrity.

It is a shameless depreciation of Trump’s flagrant criminal activities to dismiss them so cavalierly. The effort to impeach Trump and remove him from office is not because he committed “actions that are inappropriate.” It’s because he violated the law, the Constitution, and the moral duty to serve the public interest. And any Senator that votes to deny witness testimony – and to acquit Trump – is complicit in his crimes and the cover up. Which is, to say the very least, inappropriate.

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

UH-OH: Trump’s Favorite Fox News Shills Admit He Extorted Ukraine to Smear Joe Biden

The impeachment trial of Donald Trump is entering its second week with his Fox News Legal Team continuing to present a defense that is wholly composed of deflections and lies. And they are sticking with that game plan despite the bombshell revelations from former National Security Advisor, John Bolton, that Trump did indeed threaten to withhold critical military aid from Ukraine in order to coerce them into helping Trump smear Joe Biden.

Donald Trump, Fox News

Bolton’s account of events is soon to be published in his book The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir.” These incriminating disclosures are now frustrating efforts by Senate Republicans to dispense of the impeachment trial quickly. It is becoming much more likely that a sufficient number of Republicans will seek further testimony from witnesses, including Bolton. That could open the floodgates to additional witnesses and document production.

Furthermore, the media is appropriately curious as to what Bolton might have to contribute to the pool of evidence against Trump. And that’s not just what Trump refers to as the “fake news.” Even Trump’s favorite morning show, Fox and Friends, is struggling to deal with these new reports. On Monday morning co-host Steve Doocy addressed the revelations in Bolton’s book (video below) noting that…

“Apparently it says Bolton was told ‘Trump wanted to continue freezing money to Ukraine until they helped with probes of the Bidens.’ But we heard him say in the transcripts he wanted President Zelensky to look into the Bidens and what happened in 2016. So is this a big, big, big story?”

That’s actually a good point, coming from someone who’s not known for making them. We did hear Trump say that he wanted Zelensky to look into the Bidens. Not only in the so-called “transcripts” that Trump keeps imploring people to read, but also in his own words during an episode of “Chopper Talk” wherein he was asked directly what he wanted from Ukraine and replied that…

“I would think that if they’re honest about it they’d start a major investigation into the Bidens. It’s a very simple answer. They should investigate the Bidens.”

It appears that Trump’s staunchest media bootlickers are now conceding that he cannot be defended with blanket denials that he did anything wrong. They can no longer say that it was “a perfect phone call.” They must accept the fact that Trump engaged in overt extortion, but then try to argue that it wasn’t illegal or impeachable.

That’s the argument that Trump-fluffer and Fox contributor Dan Bongino made for most of this segment. Co-host Brian Kilmeade interjected that Trump’s legal team needs to include in their scenario that Trump “was wanting an investigation into what happened with the Bidens in 2016” But in order to do that, Trump would have to repudiate everything he has asserted thus far in his defense. Kilmeade also closed the segment with a bizarre new bit of advice:

“I will say this. I will say the President should take from this, between the Lev [Parnas] and Igor [Fruman] tapes that are now out, and then people writing books about him, he’s got to do better a job vetting his staff to find out if they actually want to work for him or not. Or if they actually want to leak out information about him. So he’s got to do a better job hiring people.”

Really? So the lesson that Kilmeade is conveying to Trump is not that he should take care to comply with the law and refrain from engaging in treasonous acts. It’s that he should be more careful to associate only with those whose blind loyalty can be relied upon to become willing accomplices to his crimes. Good to know that Fox News has Trump’s interests at heart, even when they are contrary to those of the nation.

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

SURPRISE! Trump’s Impeachment Defense Begins with 6 ‘Facts’ that Are All Lies

The day that Donald Trump has been waiting for (and whining about) has finally come. It’s the day that marks the commencement of his Fox News Legal Team’s presentation of his case against removing him from office now that he has been irrevocably impeached for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Donald Trump, Impeach

Of course, everyone has already heard the case that Trump’s lawyers will be making. They have been making that case relentlessly on Fox News for weeks. The case that Fox viewers haven’t heard is the one by Democrats. That’s because Fox News chose to shield their snowflake viewers from any exposure to reality. Instead, they aired their own regularly scheduled, Trump-fluffing programs during prime time rather than the Senate hearings. They even admonished their viewers not to watch the hearings at all because Fox’s shills would watch for them.

To no one’s surprise, Trump’s defense was littered with familiar lies. His White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, led off by falsely characterizing the House impeachment hearings, saying that Democrats “lock[ed] everybody out of it from the President’s side.” In fact, Democrats invited the White House to participate, but the invitation was rejected in a letter from Cipollone himself. And all Republican members of the three committees holding hearings — Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight — participated and were given equal time.

Following Cipollone’s flagrant fictionalization of events, his deputy, Mike Purpura took center stage with what he said were the “six key facts that have not, and will not, change.” (video below) Let’s take a look, shall we?

FIRST: “The transcript shows that the President did not condition either security assistance or a meeting on anything.”
Actually, there has been no transcript released, only a memo purporting to summarize the phone call between Trump and Zelensky. And in that memo Trump is plainly seen to condition aid with a demand that Zelensky “do us a favor, though.” Trump then stated his interest in a conspiracy theory about a a Democratic computer server, and the Biden family. There was no discussion of corruption whatsoever.

SECOND: “President Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials have repeatedly said that there was no quid pro quo and no pressure on them to review anything.”
In fact, Zelensky had to be careful not to upset Trump at the risk of losing the aid. You can’t ask a hostage if he’s under pressure and expect a candid answer. Zelensky told an interviewer that he didn’t “want us to look like beggars.” Then went on to say that “If you’re our strategic partner, then you can’t go blocking anything for us. I think that’s just about fairness. It’s not about a quid pro quo. It just goes without saying.” What’s more, Trump himself confessed on national television that he did condition aid on a demand that Zelensky help him smear Joe Biden. When asked directly what he hoped to get from Zelensky, Trump said “I would think that if they’re honest about it they’d start a major investigation into the Bidens. It’s a very simple answer. They should investigate the Bidens.”

Third: “President Zelensky and other high ranking Ukrainian officials did not even know the security assistance was paused until the end of August, over a month after the July 25 call.”
Not according to the Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister who said that Ukraine was aware of a U.S. freeze in military aid as early as July.

Fourth: “Not a single witness testified that the President himself said that there was any connection between any investigation and security assistance, a presidential meeting, or anything else.”
Not true. Several witnesses (i.e. Gordon Sondland, Alexander Vindman) said that Trump had made a such a connection. But if Trump’s attorneys are concerned that there wasn’t sufficient testimony from first-hand witnesses, then why is Trump prohibiting staffers like Mick Mulvaney, John Bolton, Mike Pompeo, etc., from testifying? Why would he block testimony from those he says would exonerate him?

Fifth: “The security assistance flowed on September 11, and a presidential meeting took place on September 25, without the Ukrainian government announcing any investigations.”
What Trump’s team isn’t saying is that those things occurred only after he got caught. They were an attempt to paper over his criminal behavior after the fact.

Finally: “The Democrats blind drive to impeach the President does not, and cannot, change the fact, as attested to by the Democrats’ own witnesses, that President Trump has been a better friend and stronger support of Ukraine than his predecessor [President Obama].”
You can hardly call threatening a country with the loss of critical military aid during a war as “friendly.” And even if there were cursory signs of friendship, that doesn’t excuse Trump’s unlawful behavior. Furthermore, Trump has been a far better friend to Vladimir Putin and Russia, the country that is invading and annexing parts of Ukraine.

If this is any indication of how the Trump defense is going to go as it proceeds through next week, we are in for some hefty heapings of falsehoods and misdirection. They haven’t even even gotten to the Bidens yet, as Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow promised to do. But rest assured, that will come. And the whole of the Trump defense will be built on distortion and deception. But that’s only because they can’t defend Trump on the facts.

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

HUH? Trump Agrees with Biden that He Must Be Impeached and Removed From Office

The longer the impeachment hearings for Donald Trump go on, the more deranged he becomes. He is clearly frightened and fixated on the proceedings despite his frequent and unconvincing dismissals. On Friday morning he once again posted a frantic flurry of more than fifty tweets assailing the Democrats in congress as they press their case against him.

Donald Trump, Joe Biden

Embedded in this Twitter tantrum, Trump included his familiar whining about how he is such a helpless victim of the meanies in the Democratic Party who refuse to adore him. He repeated for the umpteenth time his demand that everyone “Read the Transcripts” of his clearly incriminating phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky. And he retweeted a phalanx of StormTrumpers in Congress and the media who are valiantly defending the indefensible. But perhaps the most bizarre tweet of the bunch was this beaut:

Trump is quoting Joe Biden’s assessment that Trump could gain some advantage after emerging “victorious” from the Senate’s impeachment trial. That’s debatable, but Biden’s view is not unreasonable. What’s peculiar is that Trump is latching onto – and agreeing with – Biden’s comments that “Congress has no choice, it has a Constitutional responsibility.” Biden is referring to to the responsibility to impeach Trump and remove him from office. And Trump, as expressed in this tweet, apparently agrees with that. Good to know.

The view that Trump will be “harder to beat” following these hearings is not cast in stone. On one hand, Trump has already been impeached, and that’s forever. The Senate hearings are driving home the facts surrounding Trump’s criminal coercion of Zelensky and his efforts to cover it up. They are also revealing the Republicans’ unprincipled obsession with suppressing new evidence and witness testimony. Consequently, any “acquittal” by a partisan vote of the GOP majority would immediately and totally lack credibility. And Trump’s guilt would still be presumed by most Americans, as it is now.

The argument that Trump would be stronger rests only on the notion that his cult followers might be more motivated to turn out in November. But that’s speculative at best. His most fervent supporters are already as buzzy as they can possibly be. And he isn’t likely to attract new supporters simply because the GOP-run Senate let him off the hook.

Nevertheless, Trump is continuing to pretend that all this impeachment stuff is helping him and hurting Democrats. That view might make him feel better and provide some encouragement to his despondent Deplorables, but it isn’t founded on any factual basis. And it won’t alter the public perception that he is a liar who has betrayed his country to further his own personal and political ambitions.

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

White House Counsel Regurgitates Trump’s Most Flagrant Lie at Impeachment Hearing

After three years of relentless lying, it’s clear to most Americans the Donald Trump is incapable of telling the truth, particularly about himself. He is the most prolific liar ever recorded, having already racked up more than 16,000 documented falsehoods. Trump has made it plain that he will lie about anything – great or small.

Donald Trump, Adam Schiff

Making matters worse is that Trump’s proclivity for prevarication is apparently contagious. He is a fabrication carrier who infects all those around him. And on the opening day of Trump’s impeachment hearing in the Senate, Trump’s disease of deceit was ravaging through the body of his White House counsel, Pat Cipollone. This is far more troubling than the fantastical fictions of Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, or his sycophantic mouthpieces in Congress or the wingnut press. Cipollone is employed by the American people to represent their interests and to protect and defend the Constitution. He is not Trump’s lawyer.

Unfortunately, that didn’t stop Cipollone from delivering a statement (video below) that was riddled with lies, beginning with his ludicrous assertion that “President Trump is a man of his word.” How anyone can say that with a straight face is inconceivable. Cipollone also claimed that House Intelligence Committee Chairman, Adam Schiff, prohibited Republicans from participating in the House hearings. But not only did they participate, they had equal time with the Democrats. This is so egregiously false that it can’t be merely a misstatement.

Yet even that was not the most profoundly dishonest comment by Cipollone. He went on describe a scenario that was such a jumble of inaccuracies and outright nonsense that it makes everything else he might say utterly unbelievable. He began…

“It’s very difficult to sit there and listen to Mr. Schiff tell the tale that he just told. Let’s remember how we all got here. They made false allegations about a telephone call. The president of the United States declassified that telephone call and released it to the public. How’s that for transparency?”

Right from the start Cipollone is getting everything wrong. It wasn’t Schiff who made the original (and verified truthful) allegations revealing Trump’s misconduct during the phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky. It was the whistleblower, whose report was deemed credible by the intelligence community’s inspector general. Trump himself affirmed it on national TV. And Trump has still never released a transcript of the phone call, only a partial description in a memo. Now he says he has a tape recording. You’d think he would release that if it exonerated him. Cipollone continued…

“When Mr. Schiff found out that there was nothing to his allegations, he focused on the second telephone call. He and his colleagues made false allegations about that second telephone call that occurred before the one that he demanded. So the President of the United States declassified and released that telephone call. Still nothing.”

Cipollone is badly distorting the whole timeline. The only phone call that had any relevance to this inquiry was the second one that Trump keeps exhorting people to “Read the Transcript!” Indeed they should read it, because it clearly shows that Trump coerced Zelensky to help him smear Joe Biden. The first phone call was merely a congratulatory call after Zelensky won his election. Although Trump lied about that as well, claiming that they spoke about corruption. They didn’t. And Cipollone still wasn’t done lying…

“When Mr. Schiff saw that his allegations were false, and he knew it anyway, what did he do? He went to the House and he manufactured a fraudulent version of that phone call. He read it to the American people, and he didn’t tell them it was a complete fake.”

This is a flagrant, unadulterated, shameless, provable lie. And it’s a lie that Cipollone is parroting from one that Trump has been telling for months:

Let’s settle this once and for all. Trump’s obsession with Schiff stems from a brief portion of remarks made in a congressional hearing that Trump utterly failed to understand. Apparently Trump doesn’t grasp the concept of parody, or paraphrasing with emphasis, to make a point. That’s what Schiff was doing when Trump whined, falsely, that Schiff was quoting him verbatim.

Schiff actually prefaced his remarks by saying that Trump’s phone call with Zelensky “reads like a classic organized crime shakedown. Shorn of its rambling character, and in not so many words, this is the essence of what the President communicates.” So contrary to Trump’s brazen lie, Schiff was not “supposedly reading the exact transcribed version of the call.” He explicitly stated that he was not quoting Trump and he had no intention of misleading anyone. It’s all available for anyone to see and hear for themselves in the video.

The fact that Cipollone would repeat Trump’s nakedly dishonest account of Schiff’s remarks is proof that he is unfit to serve as a White House counsel. He knows that Trump was lying, and he knows that his repetition is also a lie. He is abusing his oath of office, his duty to the American people, and his loyalty to the nation. In a just administration he would be fired, disbarred, and prosecuted for perjury. But in Trump’s administration his disgraceful behavior will be heralded as heroic. Trump’s pseudo-patriotic cult followers are just too mesmerized to tell the difference between good and evil.

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

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

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

Fox News Sean Hannity

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The Best/Worst Donald Trump Advice of 2019: Read The Transcript!

It’s New Year’s Eve and Donald Trump is doing what he does most of the rest of the year: Lounging at his golf resort, watching Fox News, and posting asinine lies on Twitter. It’s a lazy lifestyle of ego gratification that he has adopted since becoming president and rarely wavers from it.

Trump Lies

True to form, Trump was busy tapping out tweets on Tuesday morning to insult Democrats, praise Putin, and insist on his innocence with quotes from some Fox News flunkies. And stuffed into the mix was one of Trump’s favorite phrases that he thinks is an effective argument for his impeachment defense. And as it turns out, it’s actually the most useful suggestion that Trump has given to the nation for the whole year. Therefore News Corpse has chosen it as…

The Best/Worst Donald Trump Advice of 2019: Read the Transcript!

Everyone really should read the summary memo that Trump falsely calls a “transcript.” The memo that Trump himself released reveals with crystal clarity that Trump extorted President Zelensky of Ukraine. Trump asked Zelensky to interfere in the U.S. election by trying to dig up dirt on Joe Biden. And he conditioned critical U.S. military aid on Zelensky’s cooperation. What the memo says that Trump said, in response to Zelensky’s inquiry about the aid, was…

“I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it.”

That’s a textbook quid pro quo. Trump then talks about getting some information related to a debunked conspiracy theory about a computer server that belonged to the Democratic National Committee. But he quickly segues from that to explicit requests for dirt on Joe Biden:

“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with [Rudy Giuliani and] the Attorney General [William Barr] would be great … so if you can look into it.”

So yes, please take Trump’s advice and read the “transcript.” It’s one of the most precise confessions that Trump has made to his criminal behavior. And if that isn’t enough, there is also Trump’s explicit admission that he wanted Zelensky to probe the Bidens, which he made on national television. Yet somehow, Trump still had the audacity to spend much of the year denying that he asked for that obvious quid pro quo. In fact, he tweeted that there was no such request at least 43 times this year.

Trump’s Twitter timeline was awash with flagrantly dishonest declarations of his innocence that he usually couched in attacks on others. He tweeted about the whistleblower 119 times this year; he swore that there was “no collusion” 153 times; he called his critics “crazy” 209 times; and he whined impotently about impeachment a whopping 589 times. That’s nearly twice every day.

Trump is particularly obsessed with the whistleblower whose whereabouts he repeatedly asks for. He accuses the whistleblower of having gotten everything wrong in his report to the Inspector General. That claim was chosen by PolitiFact as their Lie of the Year for 2019. But worst of all, in a post-Christmas tweet, Trump retweeted a shady account that allegedly named the whistleblower. Of course, that cannot be substantiated, but the harm is done to that person whether or not he/she is involved.

What’s more, the post that Trump retweeted was extraordinarily suspicious. The name on the account changed at least four times. And with each new name, the previous one was deleted. But all of the accounts had the exact same tweet content, were created at the same time, and linked to known Russian propaganda sources.

It’s a year-end enigma that just drips with criminal, if not treasonous, intrigue. But it Trump is confidant that everything will be resolved if you would only “read the transcript!” Even if none of his own willfully ignorant cult followers will:

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

Smoking Gun? Trump Ordered Pentagon to Delay Ukraine Aid Shortly After Zelensky Phone Call

The fact that Donald Trump has now been impeached (despite what the loons on Fox News say), hasn’t slowed the discovery of new evidence of his guilt. This is one of the reasons that it’s so important to ensure a comprehensive consideration of the Articles of Impeachment when they get transmitted to the Senate. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi knows this, and so do the vast majority of Americans who favor a full and fair hearing, including witnesses and document production.

Donald Trump

The impeachment controversy has sparked as epic battle between Pelosi and the Senate’s GOP majority leader, Mitch McConnell, who has already announced that he has no intention of conducting a fair hearing and will be “taking his cues” from White House lawyers. In the meantime, new evidence has already emerged that appears to be profoundly damaging to Trump:

That’s right. Less than two hours after Trump got off the phone with President Zelensky of Ukraine, he ordered the Defense Department to withhold military aid to a country that was being invaded at the time by Russia. The order included a directive to keep it quiet due to it’s “sensitive nature.”

Trump is fond of telling everyone to “read the transcript” of his phone call with Zelensky. He’s tweeted that demand 29 times in the past few weeks. Most recently, yesterday. He is referring to reading the notes made in a memo that describes his conversation with Zelensky. And he is apparently too oblivious to recognize that the memo actually confirms that he conditioned military aid on Zelensky’s promise to help him smear Joe Biden. What Trump said, in response to Zelensky’s inquiry about the aid, was…

“I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it.”

That’s a textbook quid pro quo. Trump then talks about getting some information related to a debunked conspiracy theory about a computer server that belonged to the Democratic National Committee. But he quickly segues from that to explicit requests for dirt on Joe Biden:

“There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with [Rudy Giuliani and] the Attorney General [William Barr] would be great … so if you can look into it.”

This new memo was acquired through a Freedom of Information Act request by the Center for Public Integrity. It is among the documents that the White House had previously refused to surrender to congressional investigators. There are many more that Trump continues to withhold. And he is still refusing to allow his staff to give testimony.

But if there’s one thing this memo proves, it’s that there is a real need to continue probing this criminal president and the accomplices in his administration. And when the Senate takes up the impeachment, they must permit the introduction of new evidence and testimony from relevant witnesses. The truth will likely come out eventually, anyway. But if Republicans in Congress allow Trump to deny access to it at this stage, they will be held accountable by both the courts and the voters.

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

Lie of the Year: Pathological Liar Trump 3-Peats as PolitiFact’s Foremost Fibber for 2019

Donald Trump likes to boast about imaginary achievements that he pretends to have accomplished. No, he has not built any new border wall. Nor has he presided over the best economy ever, or rebuilt a crumbling military, or completed any new trade treaties, or destroyed ISIS, or fulfilled any of the other fallacies he spews to his Deplorables. But there is one thing he can honestly brag about.

Trump Lies

For the third time, Trump has been awarded the un-coveted “Lie of the Year” from PolitiFact. It was a competitive year in which Trump was vying against … well, mostly himself. But he couldn’t possibly find a more formidable opponent. After all, he has the distinction of having been documented for telling more than 15,000 lies since he took office.

Trump previously won PolitiFact’s “Lie of the Year” in 2015 for his collective campaign “misstatements.” Then again in 2017, for his repeated denials of Russia’s interference in the presidential election. In 2016 PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year went to “Fake News,” so you might say that Trump deserved a share of that as well. But the falsehood that took the dishonors this year was his brazenly untrue and incessantly repeated assertion that “the whistleblower got my phone conversation with Ukraine almost completely wrong.”

As the detailed analysis by PolitiFact shows, the whistleblower actually got Trump’s phone conversation completely right in every respect. Trump never even tried to cite whatever inaccuracies he purported to see. He simply cried “fake news” and relied on the willful blindness of his supporters to believe him.

However, the enormity of this lie is magnified by the fact that Trump himself actually admitted to doing what the whistleblower alleged. Responding to a reporter’s question about what he wanted from Ukrainian President Zelensky during the phone call, Trump said that “It’s a very simple answer. They should investigate the Bidens.” What’s more, Trump’s chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, also confessed to a quid pro quo from the podium of the White House press office.

And if that isn’t enough, the transcript that Trump is constantly berating everyone to read quotes Trump plainly affirming the whistleblower by conditioning military aid on Zelensky’s help to smear Joe Biden. “There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution,” Trump extorted, “So if you can look into it.” Which is the core allegation by the whistleblower.

So the Trump provided “transcript,” his chief of staff, and his own words, attest to the accuracy of the whistleblower’s complaint. Nevertheless, Trump has denied that obvious truth more than 80 times. And his persistence has paid off, at least with the glassy-eyed members of his cult who faithfully attend his rallies. The Daily Show’s Jordan Klepper proved that by asking the StormTrumpers if they had read the “transcript.” Not a single one said that they had. And even with repeated prodding, they couldn’t grasp why that was so hysterically hypocritical.

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

Trump Unleashes a Wacky New Tweetstorm of Lies About Corruption in Ukraine

The Republican Party is demonstrating an evermore eager determination to abandon principles and embrace the dishonesty and self-exaltation of Donald Trump. As his impeachment in the House nears, Trump has escalated his efforts to muddy the debate with proven falsehoods about his interactions with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Donald Trump, Toilet, Bathrobe

Trump has lately taken the position that the only thing he was interested in with regard to releasing military aid to Ukraine was the alleged corruption in their government. Never mind that the State Department had already affirmed that the concerns about corruption had been resolved and the aid was approved for disbursement. And forget the fact that Trump never even mentioned corruption in his phone calls with Zelensky. He spoke only about the mysterious DNC server and the Biden family. Which raises the question: If Trump believed that Ukraine was too corrupt to get aid funds, then why did he think they were capable of conducting an investigation of the Bidens?

There is no doubt that Trump engaged in an extortion plot to force Ukraine to join the Biden smear campaign or forfeit aid that they desperately needed to fight Russian aggression. Trump even admitted it on national TV. And yet, Trump continues to brazenly lie about his affairs with Zelensky.

During his regularly scheduled Sunday Morning Tweetstorm, Trump posted a flurry of tweets quoting Sen. Ted Cruz defending the President. And when you have to rely on Ted Cruz for your defense, let’s face it, you’ve already lost. Cruz was the target of numerous attacks by Trump, including allegations that he wasn’t eligible to be president because he was born in Canada, and that his father participated in the plot to assassinate John Kennedy, and even that his wife was ugly. Cruz responded by calling Trump a “pathological liar,” “utterly amoral,” “a narcissist at a level I don’t think this country’s ever seen” and “a serial philanderer.” That was then, this is now…

Suffice to say that none of that bears any resemblance to the truth. Democrats have never “admitted” that they can’t prove a crime. Quite the opposite. Extortion, bribery, obstruction of justice, campaign finance violations, and witness intimidation are all crimes. Not that any crime is necessary to warrant impeachment, but the fact is there are many that Trump violated.

What’s more, Cruz is reiterating the falsehood that Trump was concerned about corruption. And of course, he fails to provide any scrap of evidence of that. So instead, he employs the common GOP deflection of accusing the Bidens of crimes for which there has never been any proof. But the worst of what Cruz said was in this same interview on Meet the Press (video below). Host Chuck Todd asked him…

TODD: Do you believe Ukraine meddled in the American election in 2016?
CRUZ: I do! And I think there’s considerable evidence of that.
TODD: (Incredulously) You do?
[…]
TODD: Is it not possible that this president is capable of creating a false narrative about somebody in order to help him politically?
CRUZ: (Laughing) Except that’s not what happened. The President released the transcript of the phone call. You can read what was said on the phone call.
TODD: You, yourself thought the Biden part was troubling.
CRUZ: Chuck, let me point out a game that the media is playing.

Whereupon Cruz proceeded to avoid the question and change the subject. But he maintained his position that Ukraine had interfered with the 2016 election, a position not shared by any of the experts in the intelligence community. Cruz asserted that Ukraine’s interference consisted of a Ukrainian official writing a newspaper op-ed that was critical of Trump. That’s freedom of speech, not election interference. And it’s not remotely similar to Russia’s covert campaign of espionage, hacking, and a massive social media propaganda project.

Nevertheless, these are the arguments that Trump sought to focus on with multiple quote-tweets of Cruz. It exposes his desperation more than anything else. And while it’s obvious that Trump and his sycophantic surrogates are furiously trying to shift the subject to Joe Biden, none of that absolves Trump of guilt for the many crimes he has committed. So WTF is the point? Regardless of what happens with Biden, Trump still deserves to be impeached, removed from office and prosecuted.

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