Why Entertainment Network Fox “News” Is Literally And Legally Fake.

Fox News is nothing more than lies and slander and conservative propaganda.

The entity known as the far-right conservative entertainment show Fox News Network has become a big problem for America. Under the reign of Donald Trump, which never would have been possible without them, a new Dark Ages era of falsehood and deception has begun. Their talking heads have become a sort of private-sector State TV, and by the day they become more brazen.

They are one of the main reasons why the World Freedom Index no longer rates America as a full democracy and haven’t in two years- since Trump took over. It is why last year’s Blue Wave was so globally critical.

Something has to stop them eventually, and the American people still can if they decide to rise up righteous. We’ve got to raise awareness about Fox “News”.  They are not a real news station legally as well as in fact. They are not subject to airwave regulation by the FCC because they are just a cable show.

They can lie whenever they want without any penalty. And they do!

Judging from current events, it’s hard to pick a winner as to which recent event inspired us to write this story now; any other day would have done as well. The now-infamous Pelosi hit video on “Lou Dobbs Tonight” seems a reasonable place to begin.

Facebook, which has resolved on being dishonest and Russian infested itself, refused to take it down, which got a lot of justified heat slung at them, but they weren’t the real culprits this time. Liar Fox hosts were, but that didn’t raise many eyebrows. The whole world has known for years they’re just right-wing talking heads. Most of us have long since gotten used to being lied to by Fox, and we know on whose behalf.

The Republican Party, and the monopoly capitalists worldwide who are footing the bill for them.

The Republican Party, or more accurately its extremist wing known as the Tea Party and Fox “News” have a lot in common. They have the same ostensible values, but more importantly, they share the same financiers. The New York Times did a piece in 2010 titled “The Billionaires Bankrolling the Tea Party.”

Libertarian Rupert Murdoch, the creator of Fox “News”, is a billionaire and was numbered in stone among their ranks before he retired. His fellow libertarians and allies Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries were the other chief culprits, unsurprisingly. Koch-supported lobbyists, foundations and political operatives are at the center of climate-science denial — a cause that forestalls threats to Koch Industries’ vast fossil fuel business.

Which “news network” has been pushing that line the loudest? We don’t even have to tell you.

As we have discussed many times on this blog, “libertarian” is the new word for monopoly capitalist, or fascist. Whenever you think of Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries, that’s who we’re talking about. A total media monopoly has been a Koch agenda item for years. Hawaiian representative Tulsi Gabbard, of all people, plays a strange role in their world. The arch-villains of Occupy Wall St, a dark money private political empire designed to promote far-right causes.

The Murdoch family is one of the biggest players. The amount of money they have formally given to the Republican Party is vast. Who knows what they’ve been up to since Citizens United? One can only speculate, and look at what we know for sure in the meantime.

Kathleen Ronayne at OpenSecrets.org put together the following statistics, leaving no doubt who Fox and the Republicans are getting their bread buttered by.

Since the 1990 election cycle, Murdoch has contributed about $750,000 to federal candidates and political committees, according to research by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Of that sum, 80 percent — or $600,200 — has benefited Republican candidates and committees, including a $250,000 contribution to the National Republican Senatorial Committee during the 1990s, when the committee could still accept unlimited “soft money” donations.

These days it’s the son of Rupert, Lachlan Murdoch, who has run the place since 2017, and he is no better than his father.

When he took over, he promptly sold nearly every anti-Trump asset they had to Disney, including the Simpsons, their one contribution to humanity. King of the Hill too, I suppose, but on the other hand, we lost Beavis and Butthead out of the deal.

Speaking as a private citizen, I don’t think it was worth it. Every day, like boll weevils, they eat away at the strands of what Americans believe is going on.

Earlier today, when Robert Mueller made his first public statement regarding the report that bears his name regarding the Russian interference in our election, they swung into action right away. Headlines bearing such trivial names as “Laura Ingraham says Mueller ‘attempting to resuscitate the corpse’ of his report'” and “Mueller statement made for ‘bad day’ for Pelosi, 2020 Dems, Trump campaign manager says” proliferated all over the Internet within an afternoon.

The people claiming that the contents of the Mueller Report are anything but a disaster of the highest scale for America are part of the problem, and as usual, Fox hosts are leading the charge. The wrigglings of Sean Hannity were as loathsome as those of Glenn Greenwald (almost; at least the former will admit what team he’s on). We’re not going to get into that in this article, however. We’re going to stick with Fox and hope that Mr. Mueller won’t mind too much our lack of focus in his work today.

Fox “News”, for never again will we write the very words without using quotation marks, a practice I am hoping will catch on, is not really a news station at all. It’s part of 21st Century Fox, a cable entertainment network, and this is of the utmost importance because it explains why they can lie to us this way so systematically.

MediaBiasFactCheck provides the background.

Founded in 1996 by Rupert Murdoch, Fox News Channel, also known as Fox News, (FNC) is an American basic cable and satellite news television channel that is owned by the Fox Entertainment Group, a subsidiary of 21st Century Fox.

Catch that? Entertainment! This will set the standard for our entire evaluation of this clumsy version of State TV we derisively call “Faux News”. Cable networks are not real news networks, at least not in the sense that the Big Three stations (NBC, ABC, CBS) are, because they do not go out over the airwaves. They are therefore not subject to Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, airwave regulation.

The FCC controls the airwaves. That’s their task. It’s their job. Their only job! And who among us has not asked before, with all the constant misinformation, the innumerable floods of lawsuits over wrong stories, the countless times they have been sued, why doesn’t the FCC do something?
Well, actually, for the same reason Robert Mueller didn’t charge Trump with a crime! They don’t have the legal right! The FCC has no jurisdiction over cable. Neither does CNN, of course, but they adhere to journalistic standards more than three-fourths of the time. Fox can’t even make halfway.
They only tell the truth on the air 42% of the time.
They’ve been using it as State TV, like in Russia, you know; the dictator’s mouthpiece, his most accessible way to lie directly to the people. But actually, it’s just like him, sham to the core and nowhere near the inner circle. We should be telling people this every time it comes up. Fox is NOT a news network because it doesn’t get to use the airwaves. It’s got to crawl through the ground like slithering worms in cables.

Cable television is far less regulated and held to standards far less rigorous than a real television station. They alone are the supreme arbiters of what they can say or not say during their slots of television, and cannot get in trouble for lying, which they do constantly. They are in no way the same as a Big Three airwave station.

To get our neighbors to see how worthless Fox really is, we need one simple equation and to raise awareness about it.

News is “fake news” if it has no journalistic standards, be they chosen or enforced by airwave laws and the FCC.

Those standards are defined by the journalistic tradition, and by national airwave laws.
Fox does not go out over airwaves, nor do they value journalistic standards.
Therefore, Fox = fake news.

Fox will lose all its power to mislead our people with lies if we raise enough awareness about this fact, which is, of course, the goal of this article. Fox But we’ll get back to that. In the meantime, let’s look at how much faith 21st Century Fox, of which Fox “News” Network is just a part, has in the truthfulness of the talking heads it’s hired.

The blockquote underneath is a waiver you’ll be forced to sign if you’d like to buy time on a Fox “News” slot, as provided by the Fox “News” Network LLC Terms of Use Agreement. 

Company makes no representation or warranty whatsoever regarding the completeness, accuracy, currency or adequacy of any information, facts, views, opinions, statements or recommendations contained on the Company Services and/or the Content.

Unbelievable!

A little background about the channel itself seems in order. Fox “News” was created by Australian-born American media mogul Rupert Murdoch, who launched it on October 7, 1996 to 17 million cable subscribers. It has gained in power and reach since that time tremendously, and its brazenness has grown beside it twice as fast, a mutated golem made of mis- and dis- information.

The word “disinformation” comes from the Russian “dezinformatsiya”, meaning ” false information given to deliberately deceive”, and so we mostly think of it as something Russian. Certainly, to say the least, disinformation strategies of the type Russia used to interfere in our 2016 presidential election cycle have become a problem in today’s world. But the Russians are hardly the true masters.

Here in the United States of America, we also know a thing or two about getting lied to by our president. We know too that his primary way of doing it has become his own personal, privatized version of State TV- Fox “News”.

What Fox has done over the years, or even just during the election, dwarfs what the Russians did to the point of demonstrating their accomplishment as puny. The Kremlin got a few ads through to people on Facebook and held a few rallies; definitely creepy, but absolutely nothing compared to what domestic mouthpieces are capable of. Russia was able to goad an enormous bull, not become one.

Compared to what Fox is capable of, they’re nothing. Small-time pikers, and no mistake. You don’t have to take our word for it, either. Consider rather the words of Ralph Peters, a former Fox News strategic analyst and a retired lieutenant colonel in the United States Army who left the network last year in March, disgusted with its sycophantic coverage of Trump and the vicious rhetoric of its talking prime time heads.

Peters said specifically that he could not “in good conscience” remain with an organization that, he argued, “is now wittingly harming our system of government for profit.”

He went on letting them have it, too.

“In my view, Fox has degenerated from providing a legitimate and much-needed outlet for conservative voices to a mere propaganda machine for a destructive and ethically ruinous administration,” Colonel Peters wrote in his message, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times.

As a people, we’ve gotten so used to being lied to by Fox that even the most acutely aware of the problem tends to have to shrug their shoulders at this point. But 99% of the slander thrown at Hillary Clinton in 2016 came from that direction. Varying aspects of what we know as the conservative media machine cooked it up over a quarter of a century, which illustrates and highlights the crux of the problem. Here in the land of the free, one of the most double-edged swords there is free speech.

Free speech is why I can write these words without having to fear death or the concentration camp. But it is also why we must tolerate Fox “News”, the Republican mouthpiece, lacking in all credulity- and yet, something I would still fight for their right to do just as hard as I would my own. In a democratic society such as ours, we have no choice but to grin and bear it. . Nothing true or useful comes to the people by way of it. It’s actually the polar opposite of news, which is daily information given by professionals, intending to inform the people about current events. Fox’s intent is to waylay and confuse.

What we, as a nation, have gotten used to accepting as a valid source is really one of the most wicked and egregious disinformation campaigns to take place in all of human history! It has not been by any foreign power that this disinformation has been unleashed on our people, but on our very own television sets, playing twenty-four hours a day nationwide. People are used to it, so they accept it as credible.

Nothing could be more inaccurate.

Fox "News" is NOT a news channel. It's an entertainment channel, like everything else on cable. Cable news is never news at all.
Fox “News” is NOT a news channel. It’s an entertainment channel, like everything else on cable. Cable news is never news at all.

When world leaders, be they figure of states or high-profile figures from civil society, deliberately employ untruth against their own people, they are without a doubt using a method of repression, and a very costly one at that. In the Donald Trump era, weaponized lying has become easier and more common than ever before. Fox News has become his primary mouthpiece.

This is a disaster for America because such a state of affairs cannot help the inflicting of large-scale corrosion of democracy, regardless of the state it’s taking place in. If a country values its democratic system, its citizens will have to find ways to ward off this threat from time to time.

Otherwise, it will not survive.

I can hear someone asking, off in a parallel universe perhaps, what’s the harm in it? Let them have their pleasant delusions if it helps to keep them at work. Is this really something we have to fear will badly wound America?

That is why James Madison wrote the Federalist Paper 10th.

A stupid and incompetent citizenry is something no nation will long survive, so you better believe it will badly wound America. It already has. Fox News disinformation ends breaking up families, making people permanently angry, and seeing to it they’re uneducated on as many subjects as possible.

Rolling Stone Magazine provides the following sad anecdote to illustrate the tendency’s nature.

Jen Senko believes that her father was brainwashed. As Senko, a New York filmmaker, tells it, her father was a “nonpolitical Democrat.” But then he transferred to a new job that required a long commute and began listening to conservative radio host Bob Grant during the drive. Eventually, he was holing himself up for three hours every day in the family kitchen, mainlining Rush Limbaugh and, during commercials, Fox News.

“It reminded me of the movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers,” Senko says. “He used to love talking to different people to try to learn their language, but then he became angry about illegal immigrants coming to the country, that they were taking jobs from Americans, and that English was becoming the secondary language.”

Studies have proven an actual physical effect of this by studying the brains of Fox News viewers. Author Daniel Goleman has coined the term “amygdala hijacking” to describe what inflammatory rhetoric and imagery are designed to do: trigger the emotional brain before the logical brain has a chance to stop it. The anger centers of their brains are literally more physically developed than those of healthy people. It’s like benchpresses for a bad temper.

In the year 2000, hosts like Hannity and the now-disgraced and silent Bill O’ Reilly made themselves the champions of the second Bush regime. This made them some friends. They learned a big lesson from it, too, one they’ve been revving up the engine off of ever since.

Misleading your viewers and using base anger to fight with is a quick and easy way to gain support from embittered people-whose numbers grow larger with every war and crisis. Divide and conquer is the oldest trick in the book used by the rich by preying on their fellows, in or out of America.

After 9/11 took place, while all the world was mourning and gearing up for war, Fox was making bigger and bigger bank as a result of their conservative alliance. They experienced a 440% increase in viewers, blowing the doors off comparable news organizations like CNN who don’t use wild speculations and click-bait headlines.

They got so big so fast, in fact, that when now-disgraced former CEO Roger Ailes came right out and said they are not a news organization in 2007, nobody much really heard him. They were too busy listening to Bill O’ Reilly and Sean Hannity instead. Hannity is a particular problem these days, as Trump’s good buddy, people give a lot of undue credibility to the lies told by him- a cable network entertainer, not a journalist.

Why are Big Three news networks like CBS or NBC or CNN so constrained by the truth while Fox is not? Surely the mighty Federal Communications Commission should be able to call Fox News to command, so why doesn’t it?

Actually, though, the FCC has no power over Fox or CNN, because both are cable shows and ultimately designed for entertainment! This is key. The difference between Fox and CNN is ideological. One chooses willingly to use journalistic standards. The other does not. Neither one is forced to! Fox is not legally obliged to tell the truth on the air.

Fox isn’t subject to FCC airwave regulation because it isn’t on the airwaves! Clever, right? Now they can spout all the hideousness they want and still dare to label it the truth. CNN is truthful by choice, but people think it’s because they have to be. That is not true, and it is almost certainly why the FCC doesn’t chop Hannity’s head off.

They nearly destroyed Howard Stern just for being annoying.

Make sure to catch that last part. Fox, the so-called “News” Network is in no way legally obligated to tell the truth about anything! They are a feature offered by the entertainment company 21st Century Fox. Entertainment is allowed to lie! It’s all just part of the show.

Making them tell the truth would spoil the effect, and our system doesn’t force them to. Not any more than USA’s client the World Wrestling Entertainment has to come right out and say pro wrestling is fake. People know it in their hearts, but they want to believe in the wrestlers, so they do. They like a good show. It’s exactly the same with Fox.

Although it should have been, it is not true that Fox has been made to start using a disclaimer saying “For Entertainment Purposes Only”. That was an April Fool’s joke in 2017 circulated by reporters, designed to make readers laugh- and to make them think. But it’s definitely true that entertainment is how they think of themselves. Ailes told The Hollywood Reporter in 2015 that he does not consider the other basic cable news channels — CNN and MSNBC — to be Fox’s competitors.

“We’re competing with TNT and USA and ESPN,” he said.

Discussion about American political issues today-meaning every single facet of life in southern North America- means a debate, unless you’re in a room where everyone agrees with you. Those debates will see a Fox-trained cadre putting forth the opinions of trolls like Hannity as a valid counterpoint to anything, even proven scientific facts. People take him seriously and believe the things he says.

Recently he said the immigration deal we nearly came to with Trump a “Garbage Compromise”. But actually, Hannity himself is an absolute, complete, and total trash can. He didn’t even go to school for this, he was working as a housing contractor when he randomly volunteered for radio and offered himself out as a mouthpiece for rightist nonsense.

If you’re willing to lie without repentance, there’s always some monopoly capitalist hoping to bring down America with your help.

Hannity has paid off for them with some real whoppers over the years. The anti-Obama movement of birtherism, 2016 voter fraud, “deep state opposition” of a “Shadow Government” – a network of government officials that are working to hinder the Trump administration. Conspiracy theories about the Seth Rich murder, and so on, leading up to the biggest lie of all- that Debauched Donald was fit to run this country.

It’s all a big show, not truthful news, but then again it was not meant to be. As the Fox “News” Network’s own CEO Roger Ailes said, they’re really competing with football and pro wrestling. It’s all for ratings and money- money that comes from billionaire libertarians like the Koch Brothers and their founder Rupert Murdoch.

Hannity will say whatever the Murdochs want him to.

That’s a big problem when most of it is not true; a third at most of Hannity’s public statements were rated fully true by Politifact. A recent Fairleigh Dickinson PublicMind Poll revealed that most Americans get their political knowledge from Sunday morning political shows on television. These “do the most to help people learn about current events.” That would seem to confirm their opinion.

However, listen to the rest of the story.

“[S]ome outlets, especially Fox News, lead people to be even less informed than those who don’t watch any news at all.”

Likewise, a University of Maryland study done in 2003 showed that Fox News viewers are more likely than consumers of any other news source to believe demonstrably false statements.

Again, this is because Fox is not a news channel. It’s entertainment packaged as news to mislead and stultify the American people. Great misunderstanding and bitterness come from believing things that just aren’t true. Real consequences arise from surrendering our objectivity.

Fox viewers have been getting angrier and angrier for decades, their bitterness manufactured and exploited. And who do their Friends at Fox lead them into feeling bitter towards? Liberals, progressives, anyone who wants to help the people. Anyone who isn’t just like them.

A full 60% of Fox News viewers describe themselves as conservative according to a 2012 survey by the Pew Research Center. According to John Ray at Data for Progress, “Across a variety of political and cultural attitudes, Republicans who report getting their news from Fox are significantly to the right of Republicans who don’t.”

Studies galore have been done to measure these tendencies, which should be well-documented and understood. Every one of the organizations reaching these conclusions is similar to MediaFactChect, a neutral nonprofit organization that exists to classify and track partisan bias levels among political media entities. They do this according to a rated standard political spectrum, going as always from extreme-left to extreme-right.

A related group, PunditFact, measures their commentators’ honesty. These standards are both logical and apolitical, and can reasonably trusted as far as anything else in the written world can.

Fox News is given by MediaFactCheck a Bias Rating very near the extreme end of the pole as Strongly Right, for reasons that are really rather damning. We’ve included them in blockquote below.

These media sources are moderately to strongly biased toward conservative causes through story selection and/or political affiliation. They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by using appeal to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports and omit reporting of information that may damage conservative causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Right Bias sources.

  • Overall, we rate Fox News strongly Right-Biased due to wording and story selection that favors the right and Mixed factually based on poor sourcing and the spreading of conspiracy theories that later must be retracted after being widely shared.

They also score badly by the standards of PunditFact, a second and related organization’s tool for measuring the percentage of truthful reporting done by political analysts on the stories they discuss and the terms they use to describe them. We decided to include the numerical figures below, as a stark quality comparison between the center and far-right journalists is to be found there.

Currently, at Fox and Fox News Channel, 58 percent of fact claims made by pundits and on-air personalities have been rated Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire. NBC and MSNBC were not great either, but their work still represents a significant improvement versus Fox at 45%.

CNN scored best with only 22 percent of their fact claims not making it through the filters and most of those coming from guests rather than commentators, which is interesting because CNN also is a cable network. They chose to use journalistic standards of their own volition, not because they were forced to by any mean laws or regulations.

Conversely, Don Irvine over at Accuracy in Media showed what Fox thinks of truth as a value.

Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes told The Hollywood Reporter that Fox News has become so big, the network is really competing with cable sports and entertainment networks like TNT, USA and ESPN, not the ratings-challenged CNN and MSNBC.

They laugh because it doesn’t get the ratings that come from anger and savage lying. It also doesn’t get big bucks from the likes of Charles and David Koch.
We have to keep hitting this point until it sinks in. Fox cannot be trusted, and we should immediately go on the attack whenever someone cites them as a source rather than arguing on the merits or flaws of their absurd claims. Fox is not a news network at all. It’s just an entertainment cable network, like TNT or USA. They do not have a record of journalistic integrity, and they do not have to have one. We must attack Fox credibility on these grounds.
On a cable network, or elsewhere, journalistic standards are a choice. Citizens have to know there is a big difference between the quality of the work of those who adhere to them and those who do not. Fox has made its choice long ago, and so we must make ours. We have to start hammering this home immediately. As fast as we can. Fox is LITERALLY-and legally- fake news. They have systematically and for decades mangled truth in the pursuit of power and money.
We are done listening.
All the filth and lies the Bernie supporters were slinging around in 2016 came through their pipeline.  They laid the groundwork in the minds of the American people that made them accept the Russian disinformation that convinced Bernie supporters to riot in the Philadelphia streets.
Most of all, they convinced the American people that Donald Trump, a known con man, racist, and bully, was worth entrusting the greatest responsibility in the world. They have put our entire American system at risk. The last pillar in the world holding democracy up
The nonsense the Russians were using was the same old anti-Clinton stuff Rush Limbaugh and his pals have been spouting. The record is clear and the facts are too.

In Trump’s words during the first 2016 presidential debates, somebody better call Sean Hannity.

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Desperate For Disaster, The GOP Holds On To Kavanaugh- Vote Set Friday.

Kavanaugh's Denial.

The saga of the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings has ventured from the unsound into the realm of the bizarre.

A Fox News interview the other night saw Kavanaugh trying desperately to regain his momentum, using what a chess player or movie buff might call the 40-year old Virgin Defense. Remained a virgin well into his twenties, according to him.

Are we supposed to feel sorry for him?

It was weird. Real weird. Here’s a guy who is about to be serving in the highest court in the land, the United States Supreme Court, and he’s on TV listing off all the sexual stuff he did as a young man. Creepy. Gross. Nobody cares, dude. T.M.I.

Kavanaugh’s own feelings about his conduct have receded into insignificance at this point. It’s out of his control completely. Trumpism is about to get hit with #metoo head on. This is the year of the Democratic woman; I wouldn’t be on the other side of this for all the money ever made by man.

Trump himself has launched into a full-blown assault on the attackers. That’s what rape culture is, in case anyone reading this has ever wondered. The victims are the ones who end up on trial because the powerful men the attackers resemble can see it happening to them. They think they’re fighting for their right to party.

One person who vehemently took sides with no facts used to be a decent sort of guy, Lindsey Graham, the Republican Senator from North Carolina. Trump has been chumming him up since the start. Looks like it’s working.

Graham went beyond what is publicly known about the Christine Blasey Ford accusation that Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her as a teenager, saying “everybody named in regard to being there said it didn’t happen.”

Not quite, bud.

Kavanaugh “said it didn’t happen, that much is true. But he also said he was never even in the room, or at the party.

His ex-roommate Mark Judge said otherwise. He was quite clear about Kavanaugh’s having been at the party, and in the room with Dr. Ford. He just denied the events took place within them.

There were another two witnesses also, but they also didn’t go so far as to say, as Graham suggested, that nothing ever happened. Mr. Patrick J. Smyth, and Ms. Leland Ingham Keyser both said they had no recollection of the party that Ford described.

But they didn’t say it never happened.

In fact, Keyser told the Washington Post that she believes Ford. So do Democrats, who understand that bringing an end to rape culture requires that women who come forward with their stories be believed.

That is why former Minnesota Senator Al Franken resigned last year when he was accused by conservative talk show host Leeann Tweeden in a smear operation cooked up by Roger Stone.

All he ever did was to make a tasteless joke, but even so, he was willing to give up his seat in Congress to set an ethical example for the rest of us, and to be a good ally to women. He is missed, and so is his sense of decency, growing thinner by the day in the nation’s fair capital.

On Monday, the Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein bomb was dropped. Trump wants to fire him, because, in the words of one headline I read the other day, “The strategy was to try and do something really big,” if it was going to save Kavanaugh.

Trump, in his petty rage and blind arrogance, is threatening to take away the Mueller probe and throw even more disorder into the country if we don’t give him his Kavanaugh.

To this man, the fate and future of the country are just poker chips in his casino- and it went out of business long ago.

Meanwhile, the other Republicans are still clinging to Kavanaugh for all that they are worth. Rush Limbaugh said Republicans can “Kiss the Midterms Goodbye,” if they don’t confirm Kavanaugh. They fear to dampen the enthusiasm of their voters by ditching him before the midterms.

The thought of the harm it might do the country to have a potential pervert in our highest judiciary is not considered at all, so long as he will vote like a crony in the future and put his name on all their lousy schemings. That is their M.O. these days. Ask Roy Moore. Sex offenses and the Senate don’t mix, and the Supreme Court is not a better match.

Understandably, we will fight like a drowning man to save ourselves and our nation from that fate, and this too the Republicans know. That is why Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave a shout out to the Resistance in the form of a bitter revile. “Whatever it took– whatever the truth really was- they were going to do whatever they could to stop this…”

You better believe it.

One key Republican holdout, Lisa Murkowski, has already signaled her support for Kavanaugh’s accusers. Senator Susan Collins is said to be wavering also.

To them both, we would like to say this: It is not too late to make the right decision, and to use your power to stop this. Resist party pressure. Vote with your heart. Do what it takes to keep our country great, like it always has been.

Help us to stop this man.

#TheBlueWave- Where We Stand, Going Forward.

Millennial Democrats and #TheBlueWave

New House and Senate ratings from CNN point the way to an excellent set of midterms for the Democratic Party.

That said- Beware complacency.

Those two words are so gigantic in this case, that they could be the whole article.

There’s a number of different factors at play in the political scene of America at this time. Some of them are in no way American, but most of them are.

One of the biggest is voter apathy.

Millennial readers, ask yourselves this: How many conversations have you had, with people our age about politics, in which you have heard somebody say: “Ah, all governments are fascist. There’s no difference between one or the other.” Or had a menu of talking points from Fox News or Infowars with them?

Many others act like they’re afraid to talk at all, either because they don’t know enough, or because they don’t care enough, or because people get so intense about it.

This is the state of things when a polarity this extreme and disparate exists between the people of the country.

People aren’t getting their information from the same places anymore. You can tell when you’ve been talking to someone deeply indoctrinated by Rush Limbaugh and the Breitbart band. You’ll immediately be confronted with a whole galaxy of half-truths, lies, and slanders.

Most of the time you won’t even know what they’re talking about, the stuff will be so out there. And by the time your smartphone has proved them wrong, they’ve already made fifty more specious claims. It becomes clear very quickly that they don’t have any interest in getting at the truth.

You can’t even talk to them anymore.

An understanding of this fundamental truth is where any realistic discussion of how to win the midterms must begin.

A great deal of time and money has been invested by those currently in power, seeing to it that those without it remain apathetic and confused regarding the process. Nor have they closed their wallets.

Charles Koch and members of his Seminar Network- donors who contribute a minimum of $100,000 to the various political organizations run by the Koch brothers– have big plans for the midterm elections.

At a retreat this weekend, the group announced plans to spend between $300 million and $400 million in 2018- a 60 percent increase from its spending in 2016-  to defend Trump administration policies that Charles and David Koch and their network overwhelmingly support- while distancing themselves from a man that is personally unfit to serve as president.

They want it both ways, and they figure with enough cash they can get it. Once the strategy gives them the power they are seeking, they figure it will all be worthwhile. If they can dominate and make a shell of the governmental apparatus, they can change things around all they like. Those changes will be catastrophic to every environment we live in.

We have to find a way to stop them and to do so we will need to surmount some difficult challenges.

Republican standing has improved recently. It’s going to take awhile for people to understand just how stupid those tax cuts were. It’s going to take a while before it hurts them.

CNBC’s John Harwood calls Trump’s tax reform a “remarkable paradox,” as middle America will not benefit as much as the coastal elites his base so loves to stick it to.

Howmuch.net, a cost information website, has created a handy infographic to help us understand how middle-to-low income households are losing.

Howmuch explains that “Some taxpayers would definitely benefit from Trump’s tax reform — especially those at the higher end of the income scale. There are others, however, who would see their tax rates go up. Especially those on lower incomes.”

This is important, because the tax plan is the reason the GOP has been polling better recently. Their strategy going forward will be to beat that drum as hard as they can. It’s the only legislative accomplishment they’ve got.

Many of them are showing signs of indigestion of the conscience, as evidenced by the fact of so many of the GOP leaders in Congress retiring, but it’s a little late for that.

Another key factor to watch this year will be Russian interference in our elections.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo was asked during an interview with the BBC on Monday whether he anticipates a Russian influence campaign later this year.

“I have every expectation that they will continue to try and do that,” he said.

“But,” he added, “I am confident that America will be able to have a free and fair election — that we’ll push back in a way that is sufficiently robust that the impact they have on our election won’t be great.”

What a joke.

Later the same day as those comments were made, the Trump administration announced that it will not impose the new Russian sanctions. And the other Republicans are just as bad. All of them are complicit in the biggest treason of all time.

Aside from all that, there’s the usual electoral stuff to consider. The House, in which Democrats need a 24-seat pickup to win the majority, looks very favourable. And ever since the stunning victory of Alabama’s Doug Jones, a plausible path to control of the Senate has arisen.

 

If the Blue Wave is indeed going to sweep over this country in the midterm elections, we are going to have to work very hard, because nobody is going to do it for us. It can and will happen because we will be here to fight for it tooth and nail.

Going forward, the key is to find out which races are the most competitive, target them, and put our resources into fighting for them. We are actively asking our readers for help on this. Anything you’ve got that might be useful, please feel free to send it in. We’ve got a lot of work to do. And it is going to take us all.

A Defense Against Fake News- Reinstate the Fairness Doctrine.

#StopLying

The news on TV this week has all been very good for Donald Trump, although his job performance has been every bit as lousy as ever. The pattern is clear. Whenever he’s got somebody else to point the finger at, his ratings go up.

The cost of Robert Mueller’s investigation has been thrown up in our faces, as if it were an unnecessary expense, or a service performed just for Democrats. Several of the members of Mueller’s team have been attacked as well, and their motives called into question.

For the record, Robert Mueller left a $3.4 million partner job to serve as the special counsel overseeing the law enforcement investigation into whether the Kremlin and the Trump campaign coordinated to impact the 2016 election, according to documents released on Monday at a request from the Washington Post.

Trump has also been receiving undue credit for the economic bounce that Obama worked eight years to assure us. His moronic provocation of a travel ban finally went through, and so on.

All of this is being slowly made possible by a “post-truth” reality defined by the random slanders of an increasingly demented Trump.

The eminent opinion of Kellyanne Conway notwithstanding, there are no such things as alternative facts. They’re just good old fashioned lies.

But here are a couple of real facts. The new administration has declared war on accurate information. And because of that, every last thing with a shred of decency in American society is either under attack or being twisted to evil ends.

Basically, the truth does not suit Donald Trump’s agenda. So he has resolved upon making a new truth. He’s good at this. It has gotten him through a lifetime.

Nazi Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels said that the key to getting people to believe a lie was in repetition, and that the bigger lies were easier to tell then the little ones.

This viewpoint, which denies objectivity and assumes the worst of everyone, is the cornerstone of fascist philosophy. And under Trump, a number of new ideas are being employed as vehicles to carry and spread the new ideas about.

One of these is a project designed to target social media specifically, a mock-TV news report touting the imaginary successes of President Trump. It is being dubbed “Trump TV” on his official campaign Facebook page.

If the Russians have sent in advisers here, they are certainly doing their job.

Earlier this year upon launching the project, the talking head of Kayleigh McEnany made its mouth speak many a falsehood on the August 6 episode of the new administration’s Trump TV project. It looked like a Trump-Pence lawn sign.

“Overall, since the president took office, President Trump has created more than one million new jobs, the unemployment rate is at a 16-year low, and consumer confidence is at a 16-year high”, and so on.

Every bit of it is an exaggeration, a theft of credit from President Obama, or an outright utter lie.

Next to her face, a small screen showed various images of a happy, senile Trump speaking to stadiums packed with adoring fans; underneath the images blared the word “Jobs.”

It all read straight out of 1984.

For now, Trump TV is a small operation, cheaply produced and disseminated through Facebook, but it’s clear it will soon be getting bigger. It’s the spearhead of an effort by media giant Sinclair Broadcasting. It’s troubling in the utmost to watch the new administration both sanction and invent new media mouthpieces through which to spread outright lies. This is not a healthy sign.

Since the end of the Fairness Doctrine in 1987, which mandated that equal airtime and coverage be given to the points of view of both major political parties, we have seen partisan organizations like Sinclair worming their way into buying up the whole apparatus. Now a number of them are no longer even American. This state of affairs is a travesty.

Bill Clinton, the most notable target of syndicated conservative talk shows cited the unbalanced nature of conservative talk radio, where “big money” is fueling “right wing talk shows.” This is why we need to bring back the Fairness Doctrine.

It is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that the very first segment of the alt-right’s information pipeline that we have got to sever is the part of it stretching here from Russia.

Former White House correspondent Andrew Feinberg is one of the strongest advocates for this point of view, and he ought to know. He used to work for Sputnik. But these days, he openly admits the site’s content being “foreign propaganda, not news.”

His claim is that organizations like RT and Sputnik hold a pervasive influence on right-wing, pro-Trump, news websites. “Many of the most popular articles about things like WikiLeaks and pizzagate and other conspiracy theories were prominently featured on the Sputnik website,” said Feinberg.

In a recent Politico article Feinberg described parting ways with Sputnik earlier this year. He felt he was being bullied and pressured to pursue fake stories, including the Seth Rich conspiracy theory. He knew that he was being “fed” questions.

A news site which is funded by a hostile foreign government with the express purpose of reporting fake news and brazenly lying to the people of America is an outrage. There’s no other word for it. Any person who doesn’t understand that is one already lost to the opposition.

A journalist sacked by the Kremlin-funded Sputnik news network claimed that right-wing U.S. outlets like Infowars, Breitbart and Gateway Pundit are joined by RT and Sputnik as functioning parts of this right-wing media ecosystem.

The crux of the problem is that we’re not all being given the same information.

Harvard’s Berkman-Klein Center recently produced an analysis of the subject which they entitled Partisanship, Propaganda, and Disinformation: Online Media and the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election. In it, they made the following observation.

“We find that the structure and composition of media on the right and left are quite different. The leading media on the right and left are rooted in different traditions and journalistic practices. On the conservative side, more attention was paid to pro-Trump, highly partisan media outlets. On the liberal side, by contrast, the center of gravity was made up largely of long-standing media organizations steeped in the traditions and practices of objective journalism.”

Democrats remain interested in things like truth and reason. The opposition has discarded those virtues as impractical, if not actively detrimental, to their various causes.

Although Fox itself does still usually take the time to bother putting a veneer of professional journalism on their stuff, they still know who a large part of their audience is, and they cater to it.

If you watch Fox News these days, you won’t just find the usual conservative twist anymore. Much of their old content has become too truthful for many of their viewers. It’s not hardcore enough anymore. These people want uglier mud to sling at their liberal foes. A website called Liberty Headlines will tell you all about it.

This is why Fox has partnered with a more extreme conservative media. One resolved on developing the concept to its evolutionary apex: sheer, pure propaganda.

It seems painfully obvious in hindsight that twenty years of media consolidation has been bad for our democracy.

The exaggerations and falsehoods emanating from right-wing media outlets such as Breitbart News have infected mainstream discourse.

Though the Berkman- Klein report we mentioned earlier does an excellent job of laying out the challenge posed by Breitbart and its ilk, it is less than clear on how to counter it. One very interesting solution has been employed by our neighbors to the North, in Canada, with a surprisingly effective result.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, or CRTC, is a regulatory media commission like the FCC. It is not large and it does not often have a need to make the news. But back in 2011, a rather small decision by a relatively small government agency in Ottawa made a pretty big splash.

In April, a major player in the Canadian media scene, Quebecoir Media, planned a launch of what they called Sun News, or Sun TV. It was billed as a Canadian analogue to FOX News, by which they meant a broadcast news outlet with a skewed and partisan conservative perspective.

But Sun News hit a major snag, in the form of a CRTC rule on “prohibited programming content” that includes “broadcasting false or misleading news.”

That rule means that in Canada they can ban lying in the media.

If the human race is going to avoid a significant degradation of its own condition, then we have to maintain our objectivity. We can’t be lulled to sleep by Trump-brand fairy tales.

It’s time we stopped letting wingnut billionaires clutter up our airwaves with their nonsense just because they’ve got the money to throw their weight around. Legislation must be passed immediately to make perfidy in the American news an official crime.

Donald Trump says he wants to make America great again, but America never stopped being great. If we wish to keep that intact, the removal of state-sanctioned falsehoods would be a very good start. Bring back the Fairness Doctrine, and make it illegal to call poisonous deceit the news. It’s really pretty simple. Just vote a straight blue ticket next year, and get everyone you know to do the same. It is time we started doing laundry.

Democrats Stand Up for Senator Franken- MD DissectFake.

The Republicans are at it again. These people can’t even spell “accountability”.

Minnesota Senator Al Franken was accused of sexual harassment today by conservative talk show host Leann Tweeden, in a particularly transparent and unfair attempt to display false equivalence.

This news comes hot on the heels of Franken delivering up to the alleged child molester and Alabama Senatorial candidate Roy Moore one of the most classic Senatorial flayings of all time.

This is just another case of the rampant “what- aboutism” that the GOP has been trying to distract us with since time immemorial.

The GOP has a clear agenda in this matter. The Roy Moore scandals are a disaster for them, and they know they can’t escape it. The only thing they can do now is to try and get us dirty too.

Al Franken is one of the most effective Senators we have. He has proven clever and reliable at countering that agenda. So now, the dirty trick thugs are being sent out to try and destroy him.

The story broke on Breitbart this morning, but somehow political goblin Roger Stone already knew that Al Franken would be accused of sexual assault hours before the story actually broke.

“Let’s just say Sen. Franken’s time in the barrel is about to come,” Stone told The Daily Caller over text early Thursday morning, hours before Leeann Tweeden came out with her claims.

Stone did not care to elaborate to TheDC exactly how he knew Tweeden was going to come out with her claims. But he did. And that means it was plotted out.

An independent observer will remember that “time in the barrel” is the exact same term he used, right before Wikileaks dumped the Podesta emails that the supporters of Bernie Sanders rioted in the streets over. That’s another time Stone was found boasting off some dirt he criminally acquired. This is his M.O.

Rob Dew of Infowars was quick to hop on the bandwagon right behind Stone.

“I predict @SenFranken will be accused of groping & sexual harassment. He is also very short and an idiot, yet people still like him ,” tweeted Dew.

Note that use of the #metoo hashtag. Conservatives would like nothing better than for women to get the message that their only advocates, the Democrats, only talk a good one and are really no different than the Republicans. Most likely, this is being employed as a way to discredit that burgeoning movement.

Senator Franken, however, must have shocked the cynics good. The statement of apology he released this morning blew the doors off the GOP attempt to ruin him.

“While I don’t remember the rehearsal for the skit as Leeann does, I understand why we need to listen to and believe women’s experiences.
“And the truth is, what people think of me in light of this is far less important than what people think of women who continue to come forward to tell their stories. They deserve to be heard and believed. And they deserve to know that I am their ally and supporter. I have let them down and am committed to making it up to them.”
Compare this with the statements of Roy Moore, when his first victim came forward with her story.When asked about his first accuser, Leigh Corfman, Moore said, “It never happened.”

“I don’t know Miss Corfman from anybody. I never talked to or never had any contact with her. Allegations of sexual misconduct with her are completely false,” Moore told Hannity.

“I never knew this woman. I never met this woman and these charges are politically motivated,” he added. Seven more victims have since come forward, and the number is rising.

Within those two statements, are the difference between the Republicans and us.

There’s no excuse for victim-shaming. That’s not what Senator Franken would want, and that’s far from what we’re after. That said, the timing on this is a gigantic red flag. The benefit to the conservatives Ms. Tweeden has cast her lifetime’s lot with is obvious and huge. It is therefore worth taking a thorough look at the circumstances surrounding this incident.

This is a really unfortunate time for such a rumor to get started. Tensions are already so high. That might lead one to wonder about all the other times this year, that such a revelation was made. Every single time something awful has happened, this entire year, someone has grabbed hold of it, politicized it, and used it as fake news.
Who was responsible for it then? There were an angle and a clear connection. Sooner or later, it always led back to the alt-right propaganda machine. Why should this time be any different?

Leeann Tweeden was a commentator on Sean Hannity’s Fox News opinion show on multiple occasions. Fox’s Red Eye program was graced by her presence as well.

That connection to Hannity would make her statement suspect under any circumstances. Combined with the timing of the release of her “bombshell allegation”, it is positively unbelievable.

The night before she decided to unburden her heart, after all these years, happened to be the day Sean Hannity himself was forced to finally concede that he has been backing up a probable child molester for about the last two weeks.

Currently, Leeann Tweeden is employed as a news anchor for 790 KABC’s morning show, McIntyre in the Morning.  She is a frequent social and political commentator on various conservative television shows. Tweeden was formerly Co-Host of UFC Tonight on Fox Sports.

However, hard times have befallen the radio industry. Cumulus Media, which owns her radio company, is billions of dollars in debt. It’s in the news right now, filing bankruptcy. It is strictly speculative, but it seems to me that cutting a deal with a few billionaires to save your company by doing a favor would be attractive to the owners of the company.
It is the opinion of Millennial Democrats that these factors make Cumulus an untrustworthy source for news.

It’s very close to keeling over entirely, and they syndicate Rush Limbaugh over 33 channels. That combination reeks of desperation.

The national news arm of Cumulus is called Westwood One. It hosts Michael Savage, who is even further out there than Rush.
Since 2009, Savage has been barred from entering the United Kingdom, for “seeking to provoke others to serious criminal acts and fostering hatred.
Before Savage was working for Westwood One, he was working at the Oregon based Talk Radio Network. It was well known as an extremist organization. Its involvement in this affair should be enough at a glance to discredit it based on dubious motive.
In the meantime, Ms. Tweeden graciously accepted the gracious apology Senator Franken offered. It seems that between the two the matter has been addressed and settled. It’s a shame that the opposition isn’t decent enough to simply leave it at that.
The bottom line is this- No way should Al Franken resign. He’s one of the best we’ve got. The thought of getting rid of him makes them chortle with ghoulish glee. That’s why Roger Stone was gloating about it hours before it broke. We refuse to let the GOP convince us to turn on our own.
Our job is to expose lies and bear witness. So please, when you see a story that looks like it could be suspect, let us know. Send it in so we can get to the bottom of it, and send it packing once and for all. Those who seek to educate will always stand as defenders of the truth. That is the purpose of the Millennial Democrats DissectFake project.