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Banned From Facebook, 'Former Guy' Will Return Via Lara Trump’s Pages

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters

Fox News contributor Lara Trump announced on Instagram today that she will interview her father-in-law, former President Donald Trump, for her show The Right View.

The Right View began as a Trump campaign product, but it has continued in recent weeks with videos that have been uploaded to Lara Trump's Facebook page, YouTube, and a Rumble page with her name. (The Rumble videos are embedded on the show's own website, where these social media accounts are linked from.)

Former President Trump is still suspended from Facebook after inciting the January 6 attack on the Capitol building, while the platform's Oversight Board contemplates recommending letting him back on the platform.

A thorough Media Matters review of over 6,000 of Trump's Facebook posts found that more than a quarter of them contained COVID-19 misinformation, election lies, or extreme rhetoric about Trump critics. The former president has continued spreading these lies in recent interviews.

Facebook's refusal to draw clear lines in enforcing its own policies is at the core of this mess -- it's no coincidence that Lara Trump broke the news on Facebook-owned Instagram.

What You Can Do To Clean Up Tucker Carlson’s Fascist Barf

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters

On Sunday's Last Week Tonight, host John Oliver documented at length the white identity politics of Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Watch:

Tucker Carlson: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO) www.youtube.com


Media Matters has documented Carlson's white nationalism at length. Additionally, as noted by Oliver, Media Matters has previously published tapes of Carlson spewing racism and misogyny on Bubba the Love Sponge's radio show.

But in addition to what Oliver highlighted, there are some steps that people can take today to help hold Carlson accountable -- and the third is the most important of all.

Contact Tucker Carlson's advertisers.

You can see Tucker Carlson's leading advertisers and their contact information here.

There are advertisers that sponsor Carlson's white nationalism. We've listed them here, along with their contact information.

But the truth of the matter is that over the years, Carlson has lost many of his blue-chip advertisers. For instance: Last summer, he lost numerous major advertisers after his bigoted rants about Black Lives Matter.

What's left is mostly die-hards and ideological supporters, led by MyPillow. MyPillow's CEO is far-right conspiracy theorist Mike Lindell, who appeared on Carlson's show recently to pitch debunked conspiracy theories about Dominion Voting Systems and the 2020 election. The appearance was eventually mentioned in Dominion's lawsuit against Lindell.

There are still companies that should be contacted and pressured about their support for Carlson's show, like the pharmaceutical companies that are underwriting Carlson's attacks on COVID-19 vaccines.

Contact Fox News' advertisers.

You can see Fox News' leading advertisers and contact information for them here.

Of late, Carlson has shown up all over the rest of Fox News; in essence, he has become the network's assignment editor, with its so-called "straight news" programs running dozens of segments jumping off his commentary. (This approach ramped up after Newsmax made ratings gains against Fox shortly after the election by aggressively challenging Fox's acknowledgment that Joe Biden won the presidential election.) Fox's streaming app, Fox Nation, is also promising additional Tucker Carlson content. Really, an entire wing of Fox Corp. is being centered around Carlson's bigotry and conspiracy theories.

Even before all of that happened, the network's essence was conspiracy theories, bigotry, and propaganda. It's just intensified since the election, with Carlson at the core.

And unlike his show, which has lost blue-chip advertisers, the overall network still has big-name advertisers -- which claim to hold values diametrically opposed to Carlson's.

But the sad truth is that even if Fox News lost all its advertisers, it would still remain profitable.

Sign up for the #UnFoxMyCableBox effort.

Join the #UnFoxMyCableBox effort here.

If you really want to know who funds Tucker Carlson's bigotry, the truth is that it's people like you and me. When you pay your cable bill, a portion goes to the various channels that you receive. Fox News received roughly $20 per year apiece from most cable news subscribers, regardless of whether they actually watch the channel. That's way more than its competitors CNN and MSNBC.

This unfair advantage means Fox News would be wildly profitable even if every single advertiser pulled its ads.

But we're at a key leverage point: Many of these agreements with cable companies are expiring and being renegotiated. The more people who join together to say that they don't want their money going to Fox News, the more leverage cable companies will have to rebuff Fox's demands. That's why we started the #UnFoxMyCableBox effort -- to build a coalition of people who can speak up about being forced to fund hate like Carlson's.

Trump Lawyer DiGenova Calls For Execution Of DHS Whistleblower

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

Trump lawyer Joe diGenova yestreday called for the execution of DHS whistleblower Chris Krebs, who was the director of the Department of Homeland Security's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) until he was fired by tweet by President Donald Trump for debunking conspiracy theories about the results of the 2020 elections.

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Even Fox News Skipped Giuliani’s Deranged Arizona ‘Hearing’ — Until Trump Tweeted

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

On Monday, Rudy Giuliani and others from the Trump campaign appeared in a public meeting with members of the Arizona state legislature to contest the state's election results. The meeting predictably featured plenty of deranged and debunked conspiracy theories about the election from the Trump campaign:

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Shoddy Reporting In Murdoch’s Hit Piece On Biden Exposed By New York Times

Katie Robertson has a must-read piece up at The New York Times about the reaction inside the New York Post's newsroom to its shoddy hit piece on Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his son Hunter earlier this week. Here are some of the key takeaways:

  • The report was mostly written by a staff writer who refused to put their name on it, per two Post sources.
  • Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani says he gave the material to the Post because he was worried other outlets would practice actual journalism: "either nobody else would take it, or if they took it, they would spend all the time they could to try to contradict it before they put it out."
  • Top figures at the paper were involved in deciding how to proceed, including editor in chief Stephen Lynch, digital editor in chief Michelle Gotthelf, and adviser Colin Allan.
  • Editors at the Post pressed people there to add their name to the byline, according to two sources who spoke to Robertson.
  • Of the two bylines on the piece, we had known that Emma-Jo Morris had worked at Sean Hannity's Fox News show recently, and that her Instagram had pictures of her with figures like Hannity, Roger Stone, and Steve Bannon. Robertson adds that Gabrielle Fonrouge, who had the other byline on the piece, did not know that she had a byline until after the piece went live. Robertson writes that three sources told her that Fonrouge "had little to do with the reporting or writing of the article."

The one outlet that embraced the report wholeheartedly from the get go was Fox News, which ran over 100 segments on the story in the first two and a half days, despite all the red flags.

The New York Post is the corporate cousin of Fox News, and is part of News Corp, which is run by executive chairman Rupert Murdoch, co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch, and CEO Robert Thomson. This is how Murdoch-style journalism works.

Update: Peter Sterne at New York magazine adds more, including a number of colorful quotes of Post employees who questioned the piece:

"I think it was very flimsy," one Post reporter told Intelligencer.
Another journalist at the paper was even more blunt.
"It's not something that meets my journalistic standards," they said, adding that the piece "should not have been published."
...
"It just makes you cringe and roll your eyes, and it's hard to stomach, but at the same time we kind of know that you're signing up for stuff like that," one Post reporter said. "It's upsetting. It's disappointing. It sucks to, like, work for, like, a propaganda outlet."

Fox Hosts Excuse Trump’s Admitted Lies About Pandemic Threat

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

For his new book, Bob Woodward taped conversations with President Donald Trump earlier this year. In some of the tapes, Trump admits that he knew the novel coronavirus was deadly even while he was downplaying it in public. Despite the damning revelation, Fox personalities immediately defended Trump.

In newly released audio excerpts from Woodward's interviews with Trump, the president said on a February 7 recording: "You just breathe the air and that's how it's passed. And so that's a very tricky one. That's a very delicate one. It's also more deadly than even your strenuous flu." In another conversation, Trump admitted that he was downplaying the risk of the virus, saying, "To be honest with you, I wanted to always play it down."

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Trump Campaign Video Features Conspiracy Theorist Who Backs QAnon, Doubts Coronavirus

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters


On July 5, the Trump campaign's Real News Insights featured Lara Trump interviewing Fox Nation host Isaiah Washington.

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Fox News Pushes Trump’s ‘Cognitive Test’ Taunt At Biden Presser

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

At the very end of former Vice President Joe Biden's press conference largely focusing on the Trump administration's botched response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Fox News reporter Doug McKelway pressed Biden about being tested for his mental capacity -- a constant theme of Fox News and the Trump campaign since Biden became the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.

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Now Lachlan Murdoch Pretends His Racist Network Is ‘Woke’

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

Around 2:30 p.m. on June 2, The New York Times' Ben Smith tweeted a note from Fox Corp. Chief Executive Officer Lachlan Murdoch:

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In Rare Interview, ABC’s Muir Failed To Hold Trump Accountable

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters.

When you are a mainstream journalist and you have a rare one-on-one sit-down interview with President Donald Trump during a pandemic that has killed 70,000 people in this country alone, you need to do better than David Muir did.

It's not Muir's fault that Trump almost never does a one-on-one sit-down interview with the mainstream media. If you look through Trump's televised interviews, there's a lot with Fox News, a good helping of Sinclair, and the occasional quick local hit. The national mainstream journalist interviews are rare; the last ones were in June of 2019 with George Stephanopoulos (ABC), José Díaz-Balart (Telemundo), and Chuck Todd (NBC).

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Trump Disputes Ominous Death Projections With Fox News Talking Points

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

In an interview with ABC anchor David Muir, President Donald Trump repeated Fox News talking points about coronavirus models. This was his first broadcast network television interview since he spoke to NBC's Chuck Todd in June 2019.

Fox News personalities have been using the wide array of COVID-19 models and projections to cast doubt on all modeling predicting the number of coronavirus-related cases and deaths. In response to rising projections of COVID-19 deaths in the country -- and seizing on confusion about the number of the models, what they mean, and which ones are used by whom -- Fox figures are downplaying the accuracy of models in general, calling them "a bit of a crapshoot," and dismissing their predictions since "we don't factor in human ingenuity."

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Fox Business Puts Trish Regan On Hiatus After Coronavirus Rant

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters.

On Monday, March 9, Trish Regan opened her Fox Business show by complaining about the “Coronavirus impeachment scam.” Her deranged monologue received widespread ridicule after a tweet by Media Matters’ Andrew Lawrence that has been viewed millions of times.

On Friday, March 13, Bloomberg News reported that Regan’s 8 p.m. show, Trish Regan Primetime, was being put on hiatus.

“Fox Business’s prime-time programs Trish Regan Primetime and Kennedy will both be on hiatus until further notice,” Fox said in a statement. “Due to the demands of the evolving pandemic crisis coverage, we are deploying all resources from both shows for staffing needs during critical market hours. Fox Business will run long form programming in prime time for the foreseeable future.”

Regan acknowledged the move:

Fox Business’s Kennedy, hosted by Lisa “Kennedy” Montgomery, was also put on hiatus.

Before this monologue calling a deadly global pandemic a “scam,” Regan was known for over-the-top pro-Trump rhetoric and for being the first interview that top Trump adviser Stephen Miller gave after his emails revealed an affinity for racist rhetoric and white nationalist conspiracy theories.

Lest anyone get the wrong idea here, there is plenty of awful coronavirus coverage on Fox that has not led to any consequences.

How Health Care Inequities Increase The Pandemic Peril

Right-wing media have lied for years about the American health care system, downplaying the fact that millions of people are either uninsured or lack access to affordable health care.

With a possible pandemic on the horizon, that's a real problem.

A perfect example of this problem is evident in the Miami Herald's reporting about Osmel Martinez Azcue. After visiting China, he felt sick. Taking the advice of experts, he went to the hospital, where it turned out that he did not have the novel coronavirus strain known as COVID-19, but rather the common flu. He was then billed $3,270, but he may only have to pay $1,400 for the tests he was given if he can prove to his insurance company that the flu he contracted was not related to a preexisting condition. The Herald noted that so-called "junk plans" that don't actually cover common medical expenses contribute to this problem, writing that "often the plans aren't very different from going without insurance altogether."

This is completely absurd. As the Los Angeles Times' Matt Pearce noted, people in other countries don't pay anything near this amount for a coronavirus test.


Right-wing media have defended this ridiculous system for years, fearmongering about proposals that would improve health care quality. People on Fox News are totally fine with rising rates of the uninsured in the U.S. They demand that undocumented immigrants be denied access to health care. Right-wing pundits embrace junk plans and argue loudly that such plans should be allowed to be sold across state lines.In short: Right-wing media assume that there will never be a health crisis that requires the public to actually get treatment. But this system has always been vulnerable to an actual crisis.

Authoritarian countries like Iran and China are having problems for similar reasons, as Zeynep Tufekci wrote, because of "authoritarian blindness." By privileging lies, authoritarian leaders are often blind to developing problems.

Right-wing media have long privileged lies about the American health care system, and now we have a president who believes those lies.

Look at Dr. Nancy Messonnier. Trump is reportedly furious at the CDC official for telling the truth about coronavirus eventually impacting the United States.

Or look at Rush Limbaugh. Not only did he downplay the virus and claim it was being weaponized by the media in an effort to bring down Trump, but he's also now saying that Bernie Sanders and the Democratic Party pose "a much greater threat to this country than the coronavirus does."

Guaranteeing that everyone in the country has reliable access to health care is not some fringe or radical notion. Limbaugh and his ilk can scream about Venezuela all they want, but from Canada to the U.K. to elsewhere in the world, developed countries have found ways to ensure their residents have basic access to health care, which comes in handy when there is a potential pandemic.

Sanders (and Elizabeth Warren) have built their campaigns around the idea of ensuring that every American has high-quality health care. And instead of showing empathy or understanding why Medicare for All is so popular with the public, we have pundits scratching their heads and appearing wildly confused.

The Trump administration can't even promise that a coronavirus vaccine would be affordable for everyone:

Maybe things would be different if network news had properly covered the health care crisis in America before coronavirus became a potential pandemic. (Instead, we've seen health care mainly be covered as a political football.)

But now it's just another episode of the never-ending right-wing morality play in which rich people deserve everything they have, including amazing health care, while the rest of us can get by with junk plans (if we're lucky) that leave us medical bills that most can't afford.

IMAGE: HHS Secretary Alex Azar (screenshot).

Right-Wing Media Claim CDC Hypes Coronavirus To Harm Trump

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

Dr. Nancy Messonnier is the director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Her impressive bio lists a number of top positions that she has held in the CDC, and it also notes that she has received multiple awards.

In recent days, Messonnier has taken a leading role in warning the public about the threat that the novel coronavirus strain known as COVID-19 poses to the United States. The Wall Street Journal noted that Messonnier said it was just a question of when coronavirus will circulate in the U.S. The Daily Beast quoted her as saying, “We expect to see more cases of person-to-person spread among close contacts. … The goal here is to slow entry of this virus into the United States.” CNBC quoted her calling for schools to divide students into smaller groups or to close entirely and conduct courses online. Many other outlets have quoted her as well.

But right-wing media have begun to coalesce around a conspiracy theory that Messonnier’s warning should be disregarded because she is the sister of former Trump appointee Rod Rosenstein. Rosenstein was a frequent target of pro-Trump propagandists for appointing Robert Mueller as a special counsel in the Russia investigation.

From a QAnon Twitter account to Rush Limbaugh’s show

The conspiracy theory about Messonnier and Rosenstein goes back at least to a QAnon Twitter account noting their connection in early January.

It really started to pick up speed this week.

On February 25, Rush Limbaugh ranted about Messonnier, suggesting an anti-Trump conspiracy after he learned she’s related to Rosenstein. It was also picked up by a poster on white nationalist message board 8kun. Soon thereafter, it jumped to 4chan’s “/pol/,” a slightly less extreme white nationalist message board. The Conservative Treehouse, a right-wing blog featured on Lou Dobbs’ Fox Business show before, also posted about the conspiracy theory.

Others followed suit:

On the morning of the February 26, Joe Hoft (the brother of Jim Hoft, proprietor of the Gateway Pundit) posted about it. Hoft wrote that Messonnier’s remarks while President Donald Trump was in India were “a startling rebuke” and that it was “eerily similar to past Presidential trips when former and corrupt DAG Rod Rosenstein and the corrupt and criminal Mueller gang would drop shocking news as the President was overseas.”

Later on the 26th, Rush Limbaugh returned to the conspiracy theory, with the transcript of his show hyperlinking to Hoft’s post. After suggesting that Messonnier was not to be trusted, Limbaugh quickly changed the subject to suggest that the virus may just disappear once the weather warms up. Scientists have cast doubt on that theory as well.

Meanwhile, Trump is reportedly furious at Messonnier:

Photo credit: Twitter

MSNBC’s Matthews Blasted Over ’Nazi’ Slur Against Sanders

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) won the Nevada Democratic caucuses resoundingly. Looking for some way to describe how it, MSNBC host Chris Matthews grabbed for an analogy about France being overrun by the Nazis in 1940:

Matthews’ analogy could have been ripped straight out of right-wing media. The comparison was swiftly condemned, including by many people not supporting Sanders:

When he is not using right-wing tropes to attacks Sanders’ positions, Matthews demonstrates his total ignorance about what Sanders stands for, even though he’s supposed to be a politics expert. He recently was harshly criticized for suggesting that there would be mass executions under a Sanders administration. Matthews also has no idea of what Sanders’ vision of “democratic socialism” means, even though the candidate gave speeches directly about that topic in 2016 and again during this cycle.

Matthews also has a long history of misogyny, and he frequently praised the George W. Bush administration.

Trump Pardons Convicted Felon And Fox News Favorite Bernard Kerik

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

A day after complaining with Fox host Tucker Carlson that criminals in New York City should be punished more harshly, convicted felon Bernard Kerik has been pardoned by President Donald Trump.

Kerik, a longtime associate of Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, pleaded guilty in 2009 to eight felonies:

On December 3, 2004, President Bush nominated Bernard Kerik to head the Department of Homeland Security, reportedly after Giuliani had repeatedly made a “personal pitch to the White House” on Kerik’s behalf. Giuliani had appointed Kerik New York City Police Commissioner in 2000 — even after Giuliani was reportedly briefed on Kerik’s ties to what the Times described as a company “suspected of links to organized crime” — and the two were reportedly “literally inseparable on 9/11 and in the months that followed.”

On December 10, 2004, Kerik withdrew his nomination. Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson subsequently began investigating Kerik for corruption, resulting in Kerik’s 2007 indictment on 16 counts. In 2009, Kerik pleaded guilty to eight felonies, including two counts of tax fraud, one count of making a false statement on a loan application, and five counts of making false statements to the government. The last charges “stemmed from statements Mr. Kerik made to the White House during the vetting process after the Bush administration nominated him to lead the Department of Homeland Security.” In 2010, Kerik was sentenced to four years in prison.

Kerik was released in May 2013 after serving three years.

Kerik has been a regular on Fox News in the Trump era, appearing on weekday Fox programming at least 39 times since the beginning of 2018 according to Media Matters’ internal database. This does not include weekend appearances, such as when he’s appeared on Jeanine Pirro’s show on Saturday evenings.

The day before Trump announced the pardon, Kerik appeared on Tucker Carlson Tonight to attack New York’s cash bail reform, arguing that the state needs to be significantly tougher on criminals. Carlson simply introduced him as a former New York City police commissioner, before Kerik complained about New York’s bail reform law.

Fox News has been directly responsible for a number of pardons given by Trump, most notably for war crimes. The network is also linked to the commutation of former Illinois governor and Celebrity Apprentice contestant Rod Blagojevich‘s sentence for bribery and political corruption.

The White House statement announcing clemency for Kerik specifically credited Fox News personalities Geraldo Rivera and Andrew Napolitano in a list of people supporting the decision.

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

In 2019, America Saw The Human Cost Of Fox News’ Nativism

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

On August 3, a gunman entered a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, and murdered 22 people and injured 26 more. In addition to telling police that he drove from a Dallas suburb with the intention of targeting “Mexicans,” the shooter allegedly left a manifesto spelling out his rationale for carrying out the attack — which turned out to be virtually identical to anti-immigrant talking points heard nightly on Fox News.

The shooter’s major ideological influence was the “great replacement” theory: the idea that sinister left-wing forces are bringing Mexicans and other immigrants to the United States to replace white people. We saw that rhetoric on Fox and other conservative media time and time again both before and after the shooting. It was no secret that it was and is a white nationalist conspiracy theory.

Here’s a sampling of Fox’s nativist rhetoric just from this year, before and after the shooting:

Nothing on Fox News changed after El Paso, just as nothing changed in 2018 after another right-wing conspiracy theory inspired a synagogue shooter in Pittsburgh.

The “great replacement” rhetoric is still there. Just days after the shooting, Tucker Carlson declared the notion that white supremacy is a real problem in the U.S. is a “hoax.” The network went out of its way to blame the shooting on video games because, from the Murdochs on down, the network pushes white nationalism to serve President Donald Trump’s agenda. Just look at how the network buried the story of top Trump adviser Stephen Miller’s racist emails.

Anyhow, here’s a list of top Fox News advertisers.