August 29, 2018

It was a light-hearted moment in an otherwise depressing conversation about from whom and where the fascist-in-chief gets his information and policy advice. Mike Lupica, the great sports writer, appeared on Deadline White House and had very wise advice for Trump, or ANYONE who finds themselves overwhelmed with their jobs or their feelings hurt on a regular basis.

LUPICA: Who is he talking to, and who is he listening to? This world of the league of aging, angry white guys. You just want to say to him sometimes, Mr. President, dude, this stuff is going to rot your brain. Catch a ball game once in a while. Go to a movie, because if you constantly listen...

TUR: Does he like sports?

LUPICA: He used to like football. He used to like football until they wouldn't let him into the NFL. Now he's on record as hating it.

The heart of the matter, of course, is much more serious. The fact that the Washington Post has detailed ways in which Fox News hosts are the nation's true presidential cabinet, and they are not wrong. Policy advisors who want to affect trump's thinking do it through the Fox News shows to which he is partial, as in the case of our economic policy towards China. According to the article,

When Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin led a delegation to China in May, he announced on “Fox News Sunday” that the United States was “putting the trade war on hold.” But soon after, others in the delegation, including China hawk Peter Navarro, found an alternative audience with Dobbs to criticize Mnuchin’s message.

Then Dobbs’s criticisms were picked up on “Fox & Friends” the following day by host Brian Kilmeade. Before long, and on the basis of those media messages, the president made an abrupt change in policy, said an adviser who was not authorized to speak to the news media.

Jennifer Rubin summed up the problem - that in hindsight is the one that brought us to this mess in the first place. It isn't that the melted orange creamsicle in the Oval Office is addicted to Fox. It's that half the nation eats that crap up with virtually no critical thinking skills whatsoever.

RUBIN: Well, this is huge governing problem. It's also a fascinating phenomenon. The other people in this Fox bubble, of course, are his supporters because that's their sole source of news in many instances. So, anything that's real DOES seem fake. It's completely out of the blue. They've never heard about this before. Can't possibly be true. So together they're in collective Never-Never land as they construct these formulas, these narratives that go on and on. Why do they think that immigration is a huge problem that millions are pouring over the border, when we have net immigration going towards Mexico? Because it's on Fox News constantly. It's either illegal immigrant hurting someone, and we do know that immigrants commit crimes at lower rates, than people born here.

That's the universe they inhabit. Not only does he not read and we know that, and does not -- we now know that they basically reduce everything to a bullet point. If the bullet points are too long, he won't even read that. So he doesn't absorb information very well at all, let alone reading it. But I think the bigger issue is he doesn't want to live in the real world. The real world doesn't think he's a good president. The real world sees he's messing up right and left. The real world sees he may have committed crimes.

Hopefully, the real world will vote in droves in November, protect Mueller and the prosecutors of the SDNY, and find a way to stop Kavanaugh from dooming generations of women to back-alley abortions.

Stay off the Fox News, boys and girls. Listen to your Uncle Mike.

Can you help us out?

For nearly 20 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.