When something especially stupid happens in Trumpworld, you know it’s the action of desperation, taken for the purpose of deflection. That is probably the case with this news story of the Trump campaign filing suit against the New York Times. Today, Team Trump filed a libel lawsuit against the New York Times over a story falsely reporting as fact a conspiracy with Russia. Statement from @JennaEllisEsq, Senior Legal Adviser to Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. below. pic.twitter.com/qqjgSjtsGt — Team Trump (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@TeamTrump) February 26, 2020 All I know is that I can’t wait to see the discovery portion of this lawsuit. That is going to be the hoot of hoots. Let’s start with getting all of Mueller’s witness interviews unsealed, shall we? And let’s subpoena Trump to testify, I’ve always been on board for that one. And howz about we hear from Julian Assange and Roger Stone, too, while we’re at it? I’m not sure they should have taken this train out of the station, but since they did, alllll aboard! Let’s see Team Trump prove up reckless disregard for the truth on the part of the Grey Lady. The editorials on this will be pouring out of the printers soon and I for one can’t wait.
In the Green Side Out series of paperbacks (it’s a jarhead thing) the glossary of one defines “Numbnut” as “a person who’s circulation to their testicles has been cut off due to their having their head shoved up their ass.” Seems about right to me when it comes to the honchos (almost all guys) that own/run major print and media outlets. Trump has been systematically dismantling institutions since he took Office. He’s routinely attacked the media including Fox News lately when the handful of folks who try to do some actual journalism have offered up criticism. He’s shouted and tweeted “Fake news!” so often and KellyAnne Conjob has spent so much time selling the concept of “alternative facts” that mainstream media has taken a big hit in credibility. While I think their complicity in sticking us with Trump in the first place means they deserve to get slammed if they’d truly do their jobs day in & day out, 24/7 and tell the truth on Trump and stop this “both siderism” bullshit I’d be willing to give them a pass. They won’t of course. Trump made them a boatload of money when his candidacy took off and like the major bankers that gave us the 2008 financial crash because they got so addicted to easy money from transaction none of the bosses really understood major media outlets are too addicted to money now to try and fix the mess they created. – There’s a bigger problem however. One of our cherished institutions has been a free press. More to the point a free press that could criticize anyone including a President. Harshly criticize in fact, including pointing out wrongdoing up to and including crimes. So here’s my question: Just what makes these corporate media types think (in the face of all Trump’s attacks to date) that he won’t now directly use his “spirit of Roy Cohn” AG William Barr to start rounding up not just journalists but their bosses/owners? Hell, he had no problem with allowing a dictator that has bailed out a family member to hack to pieces (literally) an American based Washington Post journalist to death while he was alive! If that particular shot across the bow didn’t provide the much needed wake-up call I don’t know what would. That’s why I say these corporate media masters have their heads shoved up their asses. Okay, so I could have used a gentler term like burying their heads in the sand but this is too serious and I fear too imminent a threat to be gentle and cautious with my warning. These corporate media types are used to Trump talking trash about them. Hell, it helps their bottom lines! So far. And since ratings/sales are up they are raking in money hand over fist and it’s blinding them to a threat that’s increasingly real. It’s now (I believe) increasingly possible if not likely that Trump will decide it’s time to instead of wound, to instead destroy yet another American institution which is our free press. It’s not like the Constitution matters to Trump, Barr or the GOP in general anymore. I have no doubt that Trump’s rantings against “the totally unfair media” have in private included demands to start locking up reporters, editors and owners. So […]
If the Trump GOP were a publicly traded company on the stock exchange, after the last two weeks, that sound you’re hearing in the background would be the share price crashing through the basement floor like a runaway freight elevator with a load of lead bars. And just think, on Wednesday, the board is going to vote themselves and the CEO a nice, big, fat raise. I used the corporate analogy because if Trump’s GOP were a publicly traded company, by far and away the largest single shareholder would be FOX News Corp. And the bad news for FOX right now is that they’re faced with the one thing that a large scale investor dreads the most, uncertainty. Whether of not Trump brought his rabid base to FOX, or whether FOX sold their own rabid base on Trump is really irrelevant. My personal guess is a little bit of both. But the two went together like bagels and lox, and here we are. FOX made a speculative bet on a start up, and the river card is about to be turned over. From what I’ve read and heard previously, Rupert Murdoch was no Trump acolyte, he considered the man crude and unstable. But Murdoch trusted the judgement of his own hand picked acolyte, Roger Ailes, who considered Trump as a lab experiment. It was his opinion that FOX could have saved Nixon, and his #1 star talent, Bill O’Reilly, who with the personal morals and ethics of a rabid alley cat, thought that Trump was the bees knees. And the rest is history being written. FOX didn’t have to do it this way. As a conservative news outlet, FOX could have given Trump fawning, supportive coverage, but like the also Murdoch owned Wall Street Journal, quietly called him and the GOP out when they shit in their mess kits. Instead, a corporate decision was made that a rabid base required rabid coverage, and so for three hours a night, starting with O’Reilly, and then the vapid Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura acted like a bunch of porn movie fluffers, hit their knees, and did a job on Trump. And now FOX finds itself in the same position that the GOP Senate found itself in last week. 72% of Americans wanted documents and witnesses. 71% say that Trump broke the law, and in one poll, 50% want him removed from officer. So far, FOX’s position has been to totally ignore the bad news, and go to the mattresses for His Lowness. But they can’t hold out much longer. Do they gently try to instill a little journalistic integrity, back Trump whenever possible, but gently criticize him when popular opinion is with them, or die on this hill and take the Trump train all the way into the station? They can’t have it both ways much longer. Remember, FOX News was set up as an allegedly real news organization, but one with a conservative bent to offset the supposed “liberal mainstream media.” But in the last three years, it has become more an d moire apparent that Donald Trump and his merry band of freebooters have nothing to do with traditional conservatism, as shown by the 2018 election results, and the salmon spawn run of “conservative” voters who now call themselves independents. If FOX wants a place […]
This is the dawning of the age of wingnuttia, age of wingnuttia. A Tennessee lawmaker does not like the Washington Post and CNN, and he particularly takes umbrage with the Post for talking about the Trump “cult” — a term which he insists should be defined. Even Donald Trump knows what a cult is and he only has a 200 word vocabulary. WREG TV: Resolution HJR 0779, proposed by Rep. Micah Van Huss (R-Jonesborough), calls for the state “to recognize CNN and The Washington Post as fake news and condemn them for denigrating our citizens.” The resolution recalls incidents from each news outlet in 2019 where a host or editor referred to supporters of President Donald Trump as “belonging to a cult” or “cult-like.” “To describe the entire Republican Party as a cult led by President Trump is problematic: If journalists are going to refer to the party as a cult and its supporters as cultists, they must define what “cult” means; otherwise, they are assuming that a cult is some obvious phenomenon and everyone knows what the word means,” reads a portion of the resolution. It also calls for recognizing both outlets as “part of the media wing of the Democratic Party.” Just when I was thinking that Devin Nunes and Gym Jordan were frankly terrifying, the State of Tennessee comes up with this specimen. Although this resolution, which was introduced Wednesday, does not have a co-sponsor — yet — so maybe there is hope. But my optimism is guarded, because too often I’ve seen today’s isolated loony become tomorrow’s GOP headliner. And this guy has all the earmarks of being the next Roy Moore. He’s a “Christian” who says that he “can find no evil in a 15 year old girl being raped, resulting in a pregnancy.” He’s a proponent of the six-week fetal heartbeat madness. This guy’s a real piece of work. Look for him to be a rising GOP star. NEW VIDEO: Rep. Van Huss tells @vincentdixie54 He "Cannot Find the Evil" in *Hypothetical* Rape of 15 Year Old Girl By Her High School Coach Gasps in the gallery as his "Heartbeat Bill" passes committee.#HB0077 #HeartBeatBill #CallYourRepspic.twitter.com/wL56ZaMpk3 — The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) February 26, 2019
Donald Trump gave yet another unhinged rally speech on Tuesday night, and how did the media cover it? By normalizing Trump, with NPR calling the...
The Senate sergeant-at-arms and Capitol Police are rolling out an aggressive plan to keep the press away from senators and otherwise limit reporting during the impeachment...
Mitch McConnell harps nonstop about how the Trump impeachment trial should follow the parameters laid down by the Clinton trial in 1998 — except where it comes to press coverage, which is tightly constrained, compared to twenty years ago. In fact, as the rules are presently laid out, the press has been relegated to spectators, who may end up watching the trial on television with the rest of us, rather than taking it down first hand. Egregious doesn’t even begin to cover this. Roll Call: When the articles of impeachment are delivered to the Senate, a procession full of pomp and circumstance, just one video camera and no still photographers will be allowed to document the historic moment. No audio recording at all will be permitted, leaving radio reporters empty-handed. During the trial, a single press pen will be set up on the second floor of the Senate, where lawmakers enter and exit the chamber. Reporters will be confined to the pen, unable to move with senators. No movement will be allowed outside the corrals, and reporters and photographers will need to be escorted to and from the pen. […] Journalists’ time-honored practice of “strolling” with lawmakers — the walking, talking and relationship-building considered necessary by many resident reporters in the Capitol — is one that the new security apparatus will squelch during the trial. Credentialed members of the media, who go through security screening to enter the Capitol each day, will be screened a second time to enter the Senate chamber to watch the trial proceedings. Magnetometers will be set up in the Senate Daily Press Gallery, requiring reporters to enter the chamber one by one after being cleared by Capitol Police operating the machine. This has the potential to cause delays and shape coverage of the impeachment trial itself. If reporters cannot enter and exit the chamber swiftly when news breaks or something important happens, it will likely become more convenient to simply watch the trial on television or the internet. Some commentary from Politico Playbook: WE WOULD BE REMISS not to speak out forcefully here about the restrictive rules being imposed on the Capitol Hill press corps for the pending impeachment trial. They are ridiculous. This is a big moment in American history, and the American people are getting shut out. […] NYT’S CARL HULSE, a veteran Capitol Hill reporter for the New York Times, put it this way: “Pretty much an outrage. Either Senate Republican leadership has no interest in recording history or perhaps they just want to play down the coming events altogether.” BEHIND THE SCENES, via Marianne LeVine: Sen. ROY BLUNT (R-Mo.) used a PowerPoint presentation at lunch Tuesday to show how access to the Senate side would work during the impeachment trial, an attendee told LeVine. The presentation had pictures of different entry and exit points, including locations for media. According to the attendee, Blunt joked that based on the information, members who wanted to avoid reporters could do so, while others who wanted to talk to the press would know where to go. Avoiding reporters is precisely what’s wanted here. Republican Senators have a duty to their constituents and trying to skate out of it, rather than face it, is cowardice and it’s just plain wrong. Nevertheless, as you see, this is what they’re trying to pull. — KLOBUCHAR post-debate […]
On Monday, Jan. 13, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker suspended his campaign for president. On Outnumbered, Fox News host Melissa Francis took it upon herself...
It’s been over 300 days since the last White House press conference, the job for which taxpayers pay Stephanie Grisham a salary of $180K a year to hold. Must be nice to make that kind of cash just for having a job title and not have to do the job. On Sunday 13 former press secretaries published an open letter to Grisham on CNN imploring her to do her job, because, “In any great democracy, an informed public strengthens the nation,” and “regular briefings generally lead to better and more responsible reporting.” Now these people ought to know. In history, there have been 29 press secretaries and approximately half signed this letter (Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Sean Spicer were not among them.) Grisham’s reply was typically off point and hyberbolic. She ignored her peers and criticized the press — and of course demonstrated Trump sycophancy, the mark of the true believer. Axios: “This is groupthink at its finest. The press has unprecedented access to President Trump, yet they continue to complain because they can’t grandstand on TV. They’re not looking for information, they’re looking for a moment. This president is unorthodox in everything he’s done. He’s rewritten the rules of politics. His press secretary and everyone else in the administration is reflective of that. In terms of the former press secretaries — they can publicly pile on all they want. It’s unfortunate, because I’ve always felt I was in this small club of only 29 others who really know what I deal with each day, and that was always comforting. They may not say it publicly, but they all understand why I do things differently. They know I have three roles. They know my boss has probably spoken directly to the press more than all of theirs did combined. They know the press secretary briefs in the absence of the president, and this president is never absent — a fact that should be celebrated. Like so many trailblazers, history will look back on this presidency with praise — until then, I’m comfortable with how I do my jobs — and my team and I are always available to the press.” This is Trump-speak at it’s finest. The American people are paying a six figure income so Stephanie Grisham can be a talking head on Fox News. Let Rupert Murdoch pick up the check, he’s the one getting the benefit. The woman is a right-wing propagandist, and Monday, she even went so far as to defend Trump’s racist tweet, depicting Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi wearing a turban and hijab, respectively. Grisham defended Trump, saying, “I think the president is making clear that Democrats are parroting Iranian talking points and almost taking the side of terrorists and those who were out to kill Americans.” Now if that is not a violation of the Hatch Act right there, promoting a political agenda using one’s government job as a platform, then I don’t know what is. Trump has co-opted the office of press secretary, like he’s done or attempted to do with every other government post. The person is there to serve him, personally, not the office and sure as hell not the people. Stephanie Grisham needs to do her job or get off the government pay roll. It’s obvious that she’s polishing her […]
Two masters of fiction are putting Stephanie Grisham in a corner and it will be interesting to see what her particular character dictates that she do. I’ll match that, making $150,000. But full press corps. https://t.co/ToewY1Qr5J — Stephen King (@StephenKing) January 8, 2020 This is delicious. How can she refuse? And it’s high time that this issue be confronted. The Trump administration’s watch word is “none of your business.” We’re not supposed to hear from witnesses at the impeachment trial, we’re not supposed to know how foreign policy is being conducted, we’re just supposed to sit in the dark, in what amounts to a press blackout. Good for King and Winslow calling bullshit. My prediction? I don’t think Grisham will take the money, because her position is indefensible, like that of her boss. You may recall that Mark Cuban offered Donald Trump $10 Million to the charity of his choice if he would debate him for two hours, on the issues alone. Trump never took his offer. The people in this White House are cowards.