25 thoughts on “O What a Tangled Web They Wove”

  1. from above linked book review :

    “What Bartiromo began on a Sunday morning in November … destroyed America’s sense of a shared reality about the 2020 election,” Stelter laments. “The consequences will be felt for years to come.”
    With less than a year before the 2024 election, Stelter once again focuses on the Murdochs’ flagship operation. Like his previous book from 2020, Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth, Network of Lies offers a readable and engrossing deep dive into the rightwing juggernaut paid for by the Murdochs and built by the late, disgraced Roger Ailes.
    Now a podcast host and consulting producer to The Morning Show, an Apple TV drama, Stelter also has journalistic chops earned at the New York Times. He wades through court filings and paperwork from the Dominion litigation, talks to sources close to Fox and the Murdochs, and offers insight into the firing of Tucker Carlson, the dominant, far-right prime-time host who was suddenly ditched in April. Stelter’s book is subtitled The Epic Saga of Fox News, Donald Trump, and the Battle for American Democracy. He overstates, but not by much.
    “‘They’re going to call us hypocrites,’ an exec warned.” Plaintiffs would juxtapose Fox’s public message against its internal doubts about voter fraud claims. “It was likened to ‘a seven-layer cake of shit’,” Stelter writes.
    The miscalculation by Fox’s legal team is now legend. It led Murdoch to believe Dominion would cost him $50m. But even Murdoch came close to concluding it was “unarguable that high-profile Fox voices” fed the “big lie”.
    Stelter captures the Murdochs’ struggle to make money, keep their audience happy and avoid liability. It is a near-impossible task. The beast must be fed.

  2. 2 rather dark ‘toons today. the darker one, trump lynching uncle sam, is particularly notable from cartoonist in Tallahassee. 


    Attribution: Democracy Has to Go by Bill Day, Tallahassee, FL


    Attribution: HEIL HEIL,THE GANG’S ALL HERE by Randall Enos, Easton, CT

  3. Heard Joe Scarborough point out this week that since FOX News launched in the late 1990’s its supposed benefactor, the Republican Party, has actually lost the popular vote in all but one presidential election.

  4. I really got into this lawsuit complaint, a well-written narrative of how FOX really operates…

    “I’m your Capitol Hill Producer inside the Capitol where tear gas is going off on the second floor in the Ohio clock corridor, rioters are storming the building, reports of shots fired outside the House Chamber. I don’t want to hear any of this fucking shit on our air ever again because you’re gonna get us all killed.”

    Jason Donner, who worked for the network for 12 years before he was terminated, alleges he was let go because of his political views and “his refusal to report false information” about the 2020 election and the Capitol riot.

    From the complaint:

    “The toxic environment for Fox News’ reporters attempting to report truthfully reached its peak after the insurrection on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, as Fox News’ desire to placate their viewers overwhelmed the need to report truthfully on the facts. … Once the insurrectionists breached the Capitol, Donner [the plaintiff] and other reporters took refuge in the news booths. While the U.S. Capitol was starting to be attacked, Fox News reported that the insurrectionists were “peaceful.”

    “When Donner heard Fox News’ false reporting of the Insurrection at the Capitol, he called the Fox News’ control room and stated, “I’m your Capitol Hill Producer inside the Capitol where tear gas is going off on the second floor in the Ohio clock corridor, rioters are storming the building, reports of shots fired outside the House Chamber. I don’t want to hear any of this fucking shit on our air ever again because you’re gonna get us all killed.”

    “In late October of 2021, Donner complained to D.C. Bureau Chief Bryan Boughton about Tucker Carlson’s false statements regarding January 6th. Donner stated that the Fox Nation program, Patriot Purge, consisted of nothing but conspiracy theories proven to be false. Donner told Boughton that it was demoralizing that Fox News would allow Carlson to gaslight the country with false information, especially in light of the fact that Fox News reporters were present in the Capitol on January 6th, witnessed what happened at the Capitol, and were endangered by the insurrectionists. Bough Toni replied along the lines that people were upset, but there was “nothing they could do because Tucker had gotten bigger than the network and was out of control. The executives could not stop him.”

    “On or about October 29, 2021, just prior to the release of Patriot Purge, Donner worked with Jennifer Griffin on a story debunking the false claims in Patriot Purge. Patriot Purge was released despite the fact that Fox News knew it contained false information. … Fox News began to discriminate and retaliate against Donner. Specifically, Donner’s new supervisor, NuNu Japaridze accused Doinner of creating a “toxic environment.” Dumbfounded by the accusation, Donner pressed JaParidze for details and to substantiate the accusation. She could not. Instead, she offered conclusory criticisms, such as Donner needing “more self-awareness when talking during zoom meeitings” and counseling him on the “importance of sending out editorial guidance.”

    “On September 28, 2022, was fired, told it was because he was late for work and did not show up for work. Donner asked for examples, and was told “we don’t need any”

  5. sturge, I respectfully disagree unless you mean “sorry” doesn’t go far enough to describe him. he’s beyond being just plain sorry.  even synonyms like “contemptible, despicable, pitiable , and scurvy” don’t do justice.

  6. If they had managed to throw the election into the House of Representatives—-that was all they had to do—create enough chaos to throw it into the house.   Look at them in clips from Jan 6.  They’re JUBILANT—ECSTATIC— they really thought they had it in the bag.   Beyond merely criminal. 

    The boss says he’s not leaving.

  7. I’m not sure when Faux News first flared up, I paid scant attention, so my timeline is fuzzy. But I do remember beginning around 2002 or so, my mom started relating bits of “information” that generally opened with the phrase, your Uncle Bob says…followed by something weird, paranoid, confusing, and/or conspiratorial. 
    I said, where is this coming from? 
    He watches some guy named Bill O’Reilly. 
    Do you believe that?, I asked her.
    I don’t know but no, not really, she said. 
    My mom is gone but my Uncle Bob is still kicking and still believing.

  8. I still remember working at a country station when our biggest competitor was the news channel featuring Rush Limbaugh.  Now over 30 years later, I can’t believe how many didn’t believe me when I pointed out both his lies and racism presented as entertainment.  

  9. Our radio guy was Irv Homer, “Evil Irv” on WWDB, Philadelphia. Mom was a daily listener and occasional caller. Irv loved her! 

  10. Listening to Irv, I became familiar with a bozo named Rush. Rush was a time-filler while waiting for Irv to come on for my afternoon commute. Irv advised not to pay any attention to the blowhard who came on before him.

  11. I lived about ten blocks from Alan Berg the Denver radio personality who was gunned down outside his home by a bunch of aryan goobers.  They were caught in short order.

  12. David Horsey’s We’re at the mercy of an uninformed electorate | The Seattle Times

    Ignorant is not the same as stupid.
    There are plenty of smart people who are ignorant. I think of myself as pretty smart, but I am ignorant of any words in Farsi or Mandarin, and I really could not have told you who Travis Kelce was before he started dating Taylor Swift.
    Most of the things we are ignorant about do not matter all that much – no one can know it all – but political ignorance does matter. If, as the old cliches tell us, our democratic form of government relies on “an informed electorate” expressing “the wisdom of the American people,” we may be in big trouble.
    There have always been ignorant voters, but it sure seems like their numbers are rapidly increasing. This epidemic of ignorance can be attributed, in part, to the lack of basic civics education in schools and, perhaps even more, to the vast and endless distractions of social media. Add to that the fake news of Fox and talk radio, plus the scurrilous fantasies and conspiracy mongering on the internet, and you have millions of Americans rendered politically clueless. These are folks who either do not know who their U.S. senator is, or they think he or she is part of a blood-drinking cabal of baby snatchers.
    This ignorance is evidenced by the number of deeply unqualified men and women who have gotten themselves elected to Congress by exploiting voters’ lack of factual information and it is coming into play in the early stages of the presidential campaign. As an example, surveys indicate that a large number of disengaged, younger voters are very grateful for the stimulus checks they received during the COVID-19 economic meltdown, but they attribute this help to former President Donald Trump, when, in fact, it was President Joe Biden who gave them a financial safety net over the opposition of Republicans.
    A recent CNN poll found that a mere 36% of those surveyed see Biden as an effective world leader, while 48% think Trump is – this, after Biden has revived NATO and bolstered Ukraine, while Trump spent his years in office disparaging allies and getting cozy with Vladimir Putin.
    It is very likely that disengaged voters have no idea what Biden has done in office. They also have likely not followed any coverage of Trump’s indictments for various crimes. They simply see Biden as old and Trump as entertaining.
    With most of the electorate locked in on either the red or blue side of politics, it is the less-engaged voters who will decide who will be sworn in as president on Jan. 20, 2025. It looks very much as if the choice will be between a competent man who believes in democracy and the rule of law and a bombastic con man who talks like Mussolini and plans to rule like him.
    Will ignorant voters have any idea how stark the choice will be?

  13. There was likely a lot of “reality tv” to Imus and Charles’s on-air spats. It was all for the show, but then… Knowing what I know now about you-know, it’s not surprising Charles left the way he left. 

  14. Wide reports of a tentatively-successful Biden Admin. facilitated negotiation to release Israeli hostages held by Hamas
    Nice work, Team Biden 🇺🇸 
    go away, former-guy

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