Thursday, April 25, 2019

After the Barr hoax, press has no reason to ever believe Trump team again

They lie about everything. And now we know that includes Attorney General William Barr, who brazenly lied about the contents of the Mueller report during a press conference held just hours before its release on...
CBC News: The National / YouTube Trump says flipping should be illegal 1544650775.jpg...

U.S. drops from ‘satisfactory’ to ‘problematic’ on global press freedom index

The United States is dropping on an international ranking of freedom of the press, with Reporters Without Borders citing threats to journalists as a key problem. The U.S. fell three spots to number 48...
mroach / Flickr fox news...

Fox News Is Using Democratic Candidates As Financial Lifeline and We’re Falling For It

Bernie Sanders was a big hit a few days ago on Fox News. He was openly cheered when he spoke about Medicare for All. Now, Amy Klobuchar is set up to follow suit and do an appearance as well. But, be not deceived. The Democrats are being had, as described here by Angelo Carusone, president of Media Matters. Simply, Fox invited Sanders on in order to staunch it’s financial bleeding, nothing more. Hosting these town halls and exploiting low regard for Fox News is a calculated effort by the network. But make no mistake: Fox News is a pro-Trump propaganda outlet, and the entire channel (not just parts of it) is steeped in bigotry, misogyny, conspiracy theories, and rank misinformation. Advertisers recognize that this a network-wide problem, which is why Fox News is currently experiencing an advertiser crisis. Fox is struggling to meet its sales requirements for upfronts, where the channel needs to sell approximately 70% of all of its ad inventory for next year. Fox News’ editorial decisions have driven major advertisers to flee its programming. As Fox News scrambles to avoid disaster during this key time period in which the network hopes to sell up to 70% of its ads for the year ahead, it is not the time to partner with Fox News on town halls or other events which require negotiation. Doing so will throw a critical lifeline to the network and prevent real accountability, allowing Fox News to sanitize its brand for important advertisers. That is what Fox News is doing in a nutshell. They’re covering their ass and using Democrats to do so. We can’t afford this level of naivety. Read this Twitter thread to get the picture step by step. I hope to hell this shows up on the desk of every Democratic candidate who has declared, or is thinking about doing so, who contemplates appearing on Fox News. 2/ At outset, recognize that we are in the middle of what is called the "upfronts." During this period, Fox News needs to sell approximately 70% of their ads for next year. Due to lots of issues, for the first time ever, they have been in crisis and were not gonna hit their marks — Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) April 17, 2019 4/ So there are actually two distinct issues being conflated, which I think is adding confusion. They are: #1 – Should Democratic presidential candidates partner with Fox News at all? #2 – Should they do these town halls right now given what is at stake for Fox News? — Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) April 17, 2019 6/ Let's say you think okay for Dems to partner with Fox to do town halls. Okay. But the real question is, is it wise to do it right now in this moment of desperation and need Fox News is having? Or, better to have waited a few weeks? — Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) April 17, 2019 8/ The prevailing consensus emerged that Fox was getting too extreme and reckless. Fox News countered with, 'but that was just our opinion people! our news people are great.' Advertisers were skeptical and stayed on sideline. — Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) April 17, 2019 10/ For example, upon Bernie accepting town hall, Fox pitched to advertisers something along lines of: 'Even Bernie sanders can't […]
Fox News / YouTube Tucker Carlson speaks out on Trump...

As Expected, Pete Buttigieg’s Success Cues Homophobic Innuendo On Fox News

Tucker Carlson is tobaggoning down the same icy mountain road, into the valley of irrelevance, as Laura Ingraham did before him. You may recall Ingraham’s sponsors bailing on her in the wake of the Parkland shootings. Several months after that, she lost her radio show, which diminished the vitriol and hate content of AM talk radio substantially. Carlson has also had sponsor cancellations and don’t be surprised if more show up on the horizon when this piece gets around the internet. “Dem darling”? Oh I cannot wait for the onslaught of veiled homophobic puns like this one. “Will Pixie Pete fly to the White House?”, “Will Buttigieg make America a fairy wonderland?” — Gary Bedard (@gbedard1) April 17, 2019 pic.twitter.com/gKoTCM5UCK — Crystal Warren (@happyenchilada2) April 17, 2019 Carlson is on thinner ice than he knows. If there is one thing that the gay community has going for it, it is a killer sense of humor. Is this your best shot, Tucker? Wait for the return punch! And don’t forget those delightful Trump statues that showed up one night in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle, that were lovingly crafted by a member of the gay community. We loved ours in Los Angeles, West Hollywood to be specific. There was dialogue about dressing our life size Trump doll in a tuxedo and trundling him down to the Dolby Theater, where they hold the Oscars, and making him Lord of the Lobby. Accessories were discussed, and I won a free margarita that night, when I said that the Trump statue should stand there in it’s tuxedo, majestically holding a taco in each of it’s tiny hands. The statues showed up shortly after the “taco truck on every corner” crack was made by a Trump supporter, you see. There was also dialogue that night about mass producing the Trump dolls. I got a great idea (which earned me yet another brewski) about how the Trump dolls could be like the cabbage patch dolls, and we could send them to camp every summer — in Siberia. Carlson is a pee brained sap, and he’ll make the perfect foil for the comedic put downs which are a virtual guarantee if he keeps up this nonsense — which undoubtedly he will, unless his remaining sponsors start to get antsy again. This is going to be amusing. If Carlson continues with his put downs, he’s going to find out just how outclassed he is. I can’t wait.
$uLlY44 / Flickr SUB...

A chilling reality: Media’s not equipped to deal with Trump’s ramped-up war on democracy

Purging the Department of Homeland Security; cheering the cover-up of the Mueller report while claiming federal prosecutors who investigated Russia collusion were guilty of treason; defying a lawful order to turn over his taxes; ordering the Department...

Notre Dame Fire May Be Related To Spate Of Vandalism In Other French Churches

Humanity suffered a grave collective loss today, when Le Cathedral d’Notre Dame was destroyed by fire. The building is 850 years old. It is a blessing in my life that I minored in French and did a semester abroad, living and going to school in Normandie. I went to Notre Dame any number of times and it was always a worthwhile experience. Walking into the building itself brought a sense of timelessness. Weddings, baptisms, funerals, Easter services, all manner of ritual took place within these walls for 850 years. The atmosphere was one of gravitas and one could feel history emanating from the stone walls. The sunlight coming through the ancient stained glass was memorable, even to a child raised in the psychedelic sixties. I can only imagine the wonder that the glass held for travelers visiting Paris for the first time. It had to have been magical. The joy that I felt as a young college student will no longer be felt, at least not in the old Notre Dame, which today was ravaged by flames, and that is a human tragedy. Adding to this sense of morbidity and malaise today, it comes to light that in recent months, other Catholic churches in France have been vandalized. Evidently, in the politics-heavy news cycle of the present day, cases of arson and vandalism in a house of God, once front page stories, are relegated to a much lesser stature. That in itself is a surprising cultural development, when any desecration of a church used to be big news.  It must somehow no longer be the case in the new and frenetic world of the internet-driven, 24-hour news cycle. That’s because a major international story — one involving at least 10 acts of vandalism at Catholic churches in France — went largely unreported (underreported, really) for weeks. The vandalism included everything from Satanic symbols scrawled on walls to shattered statues. That’s right, a rash of fires and other acts of desecration inside Catholic churches — during Lent, even — in a country with a recent history of terrorism somehow didn’t warrant any kind of attention from American news organizations. Even major news organizations, such as The Washington Post, were late to covering it and only did after running a Religion News Service story. This brings us to Monday’s fire at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, where a massive blaze engulfed the 12th century gothic house of worship. It’s too early to tell if this incident is part of the earlier wave of vandalism, but it certainly comes at a strange time. For now, officials say the blaze remains under investigation. The cathedral has been undergoing some renovation work and the fire may — repeat MAY — have started in one of those areas. It would be crazy to assume there is a connection between all of these fires and acts of vandalism. It would be just as crazy for journalists not to investigate the possibility that there are connections. This is very sobering, indeed. It is tragic to imagine that the national treasure, the human treasure of Notre Dame was ravaged by arson. It may not have been, but absolutely, in light of other incidents in French Catholic churches, the topic demands investigation. The site of the spire tipping over in the […]
Gage Skidmore / Flickr Donald Trump...

Reporters at The New York Times just won the Pulitzer, for exposing Trump as...

This is what you can call “Excellence in Reporting” … although the fake-tweeting resident of the White House would probably call it something else ... (especially considering the ‘Outright Fraud’ can’t ‘Outright Obstruct’ the...

Trump Just Threatened The New York Times, Says ‘They’ll Be Gone In Six Years’

Another day, another rage tweet. April 13th’s was directed at none other than the Grey Lady, paper of record, the New York Times, a publication with which Donald Trump has issues. The New York Times Sanctuary Cities/Immigration story today was knowingly wrong on almost every fact. They never call to check for truth. Their sources often don’t even exist, a fraud. They will lie & cheat anyway possible to make me look bad. In 6 years they will be gone…….. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2019 ….When I won the Election in 2016, the @nytimes had to beg their fleeing subscribers for forgiveness in that they covered the Election (and me) so badly. They didn’t have a clue, it was pathetic. They even apologized to me. But now they are even worse, really corrupt reporting! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2019 POTUS really ought to check in with his press team more often, or they with him. NYT emailed three times for comment and press office acknowledged receipt of emails. https://t.co/Jk3XOoOQgJ — Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) April 13, 2019 Your sarcasm isn't reading well. You know that he knows this and is lying. Please say so. — Kelly Oristano (@kellyo101) April 13, 2019 Now, that is an option, certainly. But, it’s a tenet of journalist never to put yourself into the story. However, these are not normal times, and perhaps Haberman should worry less about the protocol she’s properly been taught and just learn to deal with Donald Trump straight on, and call him a liar.  Most probably what would happen is Haberman would just end up being fodder at Fox News. They’re always looking to crown a new Trump Enemy over there, especially one who is with the press. Of course, this is nothing new, right? @realDonaldTrump checks with no one, reads nothing, understands very little, and rarely applies the advice he’s given. Sad! — Tom Terrando (@MrTBallyard) April 13, 2019 And that is the other side of the coin, this is the New Normal. Another day, another insane tweet. So, what? That’s not right, either. Clearly, somebody should do something, but who should do what? GOP leadership has no intention of doing anything as long as they can maintain their power base and pursue their agenda, until the Trump train derails, as eventually it must. He needs to check with reality more often. But even if he did respond to you, it'd be framed like this: "Trump, ever stoic. basking in warm shades of setting sunlight, punched back at his enemies tonight" — Danny Boy (@Care2much18) April 13, 2019 Trump is going to escalate his war on the media, and this is just another barrage in their direction. It will get worse, for two reasons. 1) The Mueller report is not going to just fade away and be forgotten, despite William Barr’s best Roy Cohn-ish stonewalling. 2) With Julian Assange back in the picture, look for Trump to cast Assange in the responsible journalist role, so that he can look for a way to erode journalistic freedoms. Assange is in point of fact, far more the spy and vigilante that he’s been characterized as, than any kind of a reputable journalist. The only one who sings that song is Alex Jones and then Trump, because […]
Guardian News / YouTube WikiLeaks briefing on criminal case involving 1554989514.jpg...

‘Dark Moment for Press Freedom’: Snowden Leads Global Chorus in Condemning Assange Arrest as...

Edward Snowden joined the chorus of advocacy groups, reporters, and critics as the NSA whistleblower described the arrest of WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange Thursday morning as a "dark moment for press freedom"...
PBS NewsHour / YouTube WATCH Barr said Trump asked him 1553524074.jpg...

Coverage of the Barr debacle shows the media learned nothing from 2016 failures

After sprinting out to erroneously announce that Special Counsel Robert Mueller's two-year investigation had delivered ”total exoneration” for Trump, news outlets are now busy walking it all back as it becomes increasingly clear that the...

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