Tag Archives: Fox News

Trump sure to ramp up his war against ‘fake news media’

Donald Trump sought Monday to turn a White House “briefing” on the coronavirus pandemic into a campaign pitch for his re-election.

To their credit, two major cable news networks — CNN and MSNBC — decided that viewers did not need to see a propaganda video in place of what was supposed to be an analysis of the federal government’s response to the worldwide health crisis.

Fox News, of course, stayed with it, no doubt to Trump’s pleasure. That’s their call.

I want to applaud CNN and MSBNC for exhibiting sound news judgment in deciding that Trump’s self-aggrandization should not be part of a sober assessment of a health crisis that has killed more than 20,000 Americans and sickened more than a half-million of us; and be sure, those numbers might be far fewer than the reality, given the shocking shortage of testing equipment to determine the actual infection rate.

You can take this to the bank as well: Donald Trump is going to ramp up his war against what he labels falsely the “fake news media” outlets that refuse to pander to his every wish.

He doesn’t grasp — or refuses to grasp — the principle behind a “free press.” The principle that he ignores is that the media do not work for him; they work for the public.

That likely won’t stop the Imbecile in Chief from going ballistic against the media who, I hasten to add one more time, are just doing their job.

Trump’s ignorance puts Americans in jeopardy

Donald Trump has emerged as a threat not only to our national security but now to the health and well being of rank-and-file Americans.

Consider what he told Fox News’ Sean Hannity, as reported by Yahoo! News:

“A lot of people will have this and it’s very mild. They’ll get better very rapidly. They don’t even see a doctor, they don’t even call a doctor. You never hear about those people,” Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity. “So you can’t put them down in the category of the overall population in terms of this corona flu and or virus. So you just can’t do that. So, if you know, we have thousands or hundreds of thousands of people that get better just by, you know, sitting around and even going to work. Some of them go to work, but they get better.”

A word to the wise and the unsuspecting: Do not go to work if you have the coronavirus!

What troubles many of us is that a lot of Americans who continue to hang onto the Medical Expert in Chief’s words will take him seriously when he blathers such nonsense.

Thus, in my view, the president of the United States — the fellow who swore on a Bible to protect us — instead is putting many of us in danger of getting potentially deathly ill.

Why and how? I can’t explain the why. The how is simple: Donald Trump is an ignorant buffoon who says whatever he thinks will benefit him politically.

Standing with a courageous GOP senator

I want to stand with an embattled Republican U.S. senator who chose to honor his sacred oath rather than following a path toward blind partisan fealty.

Mitt Romney, the GOP’s 2012 presidential nominee, voted to convict Donald John Trump on an allegation of abuse of power when the Senate cast its vote to acquit the current president.

That has brought a barrage of scorn and recrimination from Trump’s loyalists. One of them is Fox News talker Jeanine Pirro, a former judge from New York who said this, according to The Guardian: “get the hell out of the United States Senate,” while claiming that “your dream of endearing yourself to the Trump-hating left is a joke.”

Sigh …

Pirro doesn’t know what she’s talking about.

Sen. Romney, a freshman from Utah, is more of a Republican than Pirro or her Fox pals ever have been or ever hope to be. He is a man of deep religious faith. He takes the oath he took to deliver “impartial justice” as seriously as he could take any oath he’s ever taken.

So he voted to convict Trump on a single charge brought to the Senate from the House of Representatives impeachment. Trump was still acquitted. Romney’s vote didn’t matter, a point he made while declaring his intention to cast a “guilty” vote in a speech on the Senate floor.

I am reminded a bit by a former Republican House member I got to know well while I worked as editorial page editor of the Amarillo Globe-News.

Larry Combest represented the 19th Congressional District, which for a time included the southern portion of Amarillo. In the mid-1990s, Combest resisted a GOP-led farm policy overhaul. It was called “Freedom to Farm.” Combest stuck it in then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s eye when he opposed the Freedom to Farm legislation.

Gingrich demanded loyalty to the party platform. Combest was unwilling to grant it. Why? Because the farmers and ranchers in West Texas — for whom Combest worked — opposed the legislation. Combest was more loyal to them than to the House party leadership.

Accordingly, Mitt Romney was more loyal to the oath he took than to the president of the United States. Mitt Romney didn’t get my vote for POTUS in 2012. He gets my undying respect now.

Fox News judge turns up heat on impeachment and conviction

What in the name of newly discovered enlightenment has happened to Andrew Napolitano?

The Fox News criminal justice analyst — and a fellow long thought to be a shill for Fox’s right-wing propaganda machine — has become a leading critic of Donald John Trump and is saying things in public that I consider to be absolutely stunning.

That is, if you consider the source.

Napolitano, a former New Jersey Superior Court judge, has said that Republican senators who say that the current president of the United States should be acquitted of charges brought in his impeachment are unfit to sit as Senate trial jurors. Moreover, he has said that the House of Representatives was justified in impeaching Trump on grounds of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

Holy moly, man! The guy is making my head spin!

According to Newsweek.com: “What is required for removal of the president?” the former judge asked. “A demonstration of presidential commission of high crimes and misdemeanors, of which in Trump’s case the evidence is ample and uncontradicted.”

Newsweek.com added about the abuse of power article that the House filed: “It leaves us with valid, lawful, constitutional arguments for Trump’s impeachment that he ought to take seriously,” Napolitano wrote, after explaining the legal basis for the president’s impeachment. “That is, unless he knows he will be acquitted because Republican senators have told him so. Whoever may have whispered that into his ear is unworthy of sitting as a juror and has violated the oath of impartial justice and fidelity to the Constitution and the law,” he argued.

Well, there you go.

Of course, the strong words of a judge once hailed in conservative circles as a judicial genius will go unheeded by the president’s protective phalanx that is sitting in judgment.

Speaker Pelosi: Don’t mess with me

Well, we have witnessed what happens when the speaker of the House of Representatives’ dander get riled up.

She tells a reporter who had the bad form to ask her a question that cut her to the quick to “not mess with me” when framing a question about whether she hates anyone, let alone a president of the United States whose impeachment she is about to engineer.

James Rosen, formerly of Fox News and now of Sinclair News, asked Pelosi on Friday whether she “hates” Donald Trump. Pelosi had stepped away from the podium after giving her press briefing. She wheeled around to answer Rosen, then she went back to the podium to make abundantly clear what was about to come from her mouth.

She said she doesn’t “hate anyone.” She invoked her Catholic upbringing and her being taught to “pray” for those with whom she disagrees. Pelosi said she prays for Donald Trump “all the time.” She said the issues leading to his certain impeachment have to do with the law, the Constitution and his high office.

“Don’t mess me with” when you ask me a question that implies hatred, she scolded Rosen.

Then she walked away a second time.

I have read accounts of the mood in the room in that moment and those who were there reported that they’d never witnessed a room full of reporters stunned into total silence. That is what occurred when Pelosi fired her barrage at a reporter.

It well might have been the speaker’s finest moment in her long public service career. Moreover, it likely revealed the kind of foe that Donald Trump is facing.

Shepard Smith leaves Fox News … but how did it happen?

Let’s see if we can connect a few dots regarding Shepard Smith’s stunning departure as a lead anchor on the Fox News Channel.

  • Smith went on the air and bid farewell, thanking Fox for giving him the opportunity of a lifetime.
  • He has been critical of Donald Trump, while the network that employed him became a presidential favorite.
  • Smith’s departure apparently caught his colleagues by surprise. Business news anchor Neil Cavuto was stunned into speechlessness.

My thoughts: Was the anchor’s departure totally of his own volition? Was it totally as he presented it today on the air? I’m just asking here.

There seems to be a good bit more to this story than we’ve been told.

Whatever. Shepard Smith is a pro. He’s a first-class broadcast journalist. I am almost willing to bet real American money he ends up on another broadcast/cable network … soon!

Fox to POTUS: We don’t work for you!

I’m in a shout-out frame of mind.

Thus, I want to say “good show!” to some of Fox News Channel’s top guns for firing back at Donald Trump’s bitching about what he seems to suggest is a growing “disloyalty” among Fox News’s talking heads.

Longtime journalist Brit Hume brusquely told Trump: “We don’t work for you.” Indeed, the network does not work for Trump, although a few of its commentators occasionally act as if they do.

Trump, though, is griping about the news coverage that Fox is providing.

As The Daily Beast reported about Trump’s recent Twitter-tantrum: The president concluded by complaining that Fox News was “letting millions of GREAT people down” and that he needs to “start looking for a new News Outlet” since the one-time channel “isn’t working for us anymore!”

Fox does have some hard-nosed reporters and news anchors on its staff. I continue to hold up Chris Wallace, host of “Fox News Sunday.” It also has Shep Smith and Brett Baier on anchor desks during the week day.

I won’t offer any commentary on the alleged “work” done by, oh, Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, the “Fox & Friends” co-hosts, or Laura Ingraham. They all are full of opinions and express them regularly. They are entitled, certainly.

However, for Trump to suggest that a major news and opinion outlet should be “loyal” to him is disgusting and disgraceful beyond belief.

The pros at Fox are doing their job.

If only Donald Trump would realize the fundamental truth about Fox. The network might produce more “friendly” or “favorable” coverage than other news outlets, but it does not work for the president of the United States.

I’m glad to hear the Fox superstars pushing back on Donald Trump.

Et tu, Fox News Channel?

You can quibble till the paint dries about the quality of Fox News Channel’s political coverage. I do on occasion. The network that calls itself “fair and balance” is neither of those things.

However, news hands at FNC are capable of doing good work. They conduct public opinion polling on occasion that raises an eyebrow or two, such as a recent poll showing how Donald Trump matches up against his Democratic opponents.

The most recent Fox poll shows the president, for instance, trailing former Vice President Joe Biden by a margin well outside the margin of error.

The president’s response? He went after the “friendly” network, suggesting it has gone to the dark side by casting him in a negative light. The poll has him “losing big to Sleepy Joe,” Trump said on Twitter.

Good grief, dude. Take a rest from the Twitter machine. I mean, you’ve got important work to do. You are seeking to make America great again, isn’t that right, Mr. President? These constant Twitter tirades make America laughable.

As for what the polls are saying more than a year away from the next election, I’ll answer with two words: President Dukakis.

In 1988, polling had the Democratic presidential nominee Michael Dukakis about 17 points ahead of Vice President George H.W. Bush heading into that year’s election campaign season. The election, um, didn’t turn out that way … you know?

Don’t misunderstand me. I do not want Trump to turn those polls around. If anything, I hope whoever he faces next fall widens the gap and trounces the incumbent badly. He needs to back to … wherever.

So, the president needs to chill out. Get to work. Quit busying yourself with idiotic tweets and assorted blathering about polls with which you disagree.

Shut up, Lou Dobbs!

Lou Dobbs doesn’t know what he’s talking about when he calls American general-grade officers “snowflakes.”

The Fox News business correspondent/talking head stepped in it with a comment about the generals’ opposition to the militarization of the Fourth of July celebration set for tonight in the nation’s capital.

“No wonder” they haven’t won a war since 1991, Dobbs wrote on Twitter, which lit up in return over Dobbs’ ridiculous bloviation.

Dobbs takes heat

Just for giggles, I sought to look up Dobbs’ background and came up empty in the hunt for any military experience. I am not suggesting that military critics who didn’t serve are not qualified to offer criticism of the brass. I am suggesting, though, that service in the military might have tempered Dobbs’ statements about the brass’ opposition to what Donald Trump is seeking to do with the nation’s tradition of honoring its independence.

And what, therefore, does the commander in chief think of the criticism from the ranks?

For his part, the president has been tweeting all day, apparently, about the thrill of seeing the finest military hardware on Earth while the nation commemorates its independence from colonial rule in the late 18th century.

What I should tell readers here, given Dobbs’ apparent lack of understanding of these matters, is that the military high command dislikes being used for political purposes. The men and women who serve do so to protect the nation, not to be used as props.

The generals’ opposition is not a matter of “snowflake” sensibilities. It’s a matter of understanding the mission of the world’s mightiest military establishment.

Get a grip, Lou Dobbs. Stick to business reporting and steer far away from — dare I say it? — “fake news.”

Here is what POTUS could have said

I am among the last people on Earth who Donald Trump would ask for advice, but I’ll offer a bit of unsolicited advice anyway.

Trump sat this week in front of rows of graves at Normandy, the site of the epic World War II invasion and battle that sealed the doom of the Third Reich. Fox News interviewer Laura Ingraham asked him some questions about House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former special counsel Robert Mueller.

Ingraham was looking to push Trump’s hot button. He took the bait. He swallowed it whole and proceeded to dishonor the men buried behind him by offering a blistering partisan critique of Mueller and Pelosi. He said Mueller “made a fool of himself,” and called Pelosi a “disaster.”

Had the president asked me how to handle such a loaded set of questions, I would have counseled he say the following:

That’s a good question, Laura. However, I am not going to answer it now. Not here. Not in the presence of the men buried behind me.

I came to Normandy to honor the heroism of our brave fighting men and their comrades from Great Britain, Canada, France and many other nations involved in that great war.

I am going to speak very soon at a ceremony attended by some of the men who survived that horrible conflict on the beaches here. I don’t want to sully that event with a partisan commentary on matters back at home. 

It’s been said that “politics ends at the water’s edge.” A great Republican senator, Arthur Vandenberg of Michigan, offered that bit of wisdom. I intend to follow it here.

Now, if you want to ask me about the commemoration we are offering here, I’ll be glad to answer that.

Politics? Let’s wait until we get home. OK?

The president didn’t say that. If only he could understand the solemnity of the moment and appreciate the sacrifice of the men who died in defense of our way of life.