Peeling Fox's Onion of Hypocrisy
Plus: Nikki and her critics
(Composite / Photos: GettyImages / Shutterstock)
Fox News has, arguably, had worse days than Thursday. But not many. And the worst is undoubtedly yet to come.
Do yourself a favor and take some time to peruse the massive email dump the News Gods in their beneficence granted us last night. The voting machine company, Dominion, is suing Fox for the Murdoch First Born and a gadzillion dollars (actually $1.6 billion) for its election-related fabrications and lies.
Yesterday, we got a look at some of the evidence Dominion has gathered. In court filings seeking a summary judgment, the company laid out in granular detail its case that “literally dozens of people with editorial responsibility—from the top of the organization to the producers of specific shows to the hosts themselves—acted with actual malice.”
It is like peeling an onion of duplicity, hypocrisy, and journalistic malpractice.
NPR: “Off the air, Fox News stars blasted the election fraud claims they peddled.”
CNN: “Fox News stars and executives privately trashed Trump’s election fraud claims, court document reveals.”
NYT: “Fox Stars Privately Expressed Disbelief About Election Fraud Claims. ‘Crazy Stuff.’
Politico Playbook: “Fox News' split screen spills into view.”
Mediaite: Tucker Carlson Called Trump ‘A Demonic Force’ and ‘A Destroyer’ on Day of Capitol Riot, Newly-Released Text Shows
One dazzling detail: “[Sean] Hannity and [Tucker] Carlson tried to get Fox News reporter Jacqui Heinrich fired for fact-checking a Trump tweet about Dominion and noting that there was no evidence of votes being destroyed.”
“Please get her fired. Seriously… What the fuck?” Carlson texted Ingraham and Hannity on Nov. 12, 2020. “It’s measurably hurting the company. The stock price is down. Not a joke.
Not a joke at all.
The Dominion filing is filled with quotes that document what the Fox folks knew about the utter bulls*t they were broadcasting and when they knew it:
Each circumstantial factor cuts strongly in Dominion’s favor. But here, the words of multiple Fox employees provide overwhelming direct evidence of actual malice. In addition to the evidence cited above, the excerpts below feature just some of the additional examples showing Fox employees knew at the time that these claims—and the guests promoting them—were:
“ludicrous” –Tucker Carlson [11/20/20]
“totally off the rails” –Tucker Carlson [12/24/20]
“F’ing lunatics” –Sean Hannity [12/22/20]
“nuts” –Dana Perino [11/16/20]
“complete bs” –Producer John Fawcett to Lou Dobbs [11/27/20]
“kooky” –Maria Bartiromo, regarding email received from Powell [11/07/20]
“MIND BLOWINGLY NUTS” –Raj Shah, Fox Corporation SVP [11/21/20]
There’s a lot more.
The bottom-line via MMFA: “Fox knew that it was pushing lies about Dominion and the election, and the network continued to smear the company and spread conspiracy theories anyway.”
What Nikki has exposed (again)
Come for the racism, stay for the stale sexism.
Over at Townhall, Hugh Hewitt’s radio fill-in host refers to the former South Carolina governor as Nikki Harris.
As in Kamala Harris.
Get it? Get it? Nikki and Kamala are both women of color so calling her “Nikki Harris” is HILAAAARIOUS, is it not?
Like Kamala, Nikki is everything wrong with her party. Kamala is Hillary Lite, slightly less bitter, a lot dumber, but just as insincere. Nikki is Jeb! in a skirt…
Vapid. Overrated. Unaccomplished despite her credentials. Nikki Haley is the Peter Principle personified, a tiresome, empty pantsuit.
What was Haley’s cardinal sin? The one decision that marks her out as “Jeb! in a skirt” and Kamala’s “doppleganger”?
Kurt Schlichter’s whitey-tighties are twisted by her decision to “[surrender] to the mob” by removing a Confederate Flag when she was governor. It wasn’t so much that she took down the rebel flag after a white supremacist mass murder, it was “her sanctimonious acceptance of the whole narrative behind the faux outrage that exposed her inner establishment conformist.”
Meanwhile, as Nellie Bowles writes in the Free Press, some progressives are also rethinking their stance on racism and sexism for Nikki Haley.
ICYMI: CNN’s Don Lemon managed to impale himself on live television, in a genuinely FFS moment.
Lemon declared, “Nikki Haley isn’t in her prime,” which prompted Harlow to push back and demand to know what he was talking about.
In the bizarre exchange that followed, Lemon argued that “a woman is in their prime in 20s and 30s and maybe 40s,which he based on a nebulous reference to Google. Meanwhile, Harlow attempted to ask Lemon if he was talking about a woman’s ability to bear children or a woman’s capacity for the wisdom to be president.
It will not surprise you to learn that it’s not going well for Lemon.
And, via Bowles:
[Here’s] progressive hero Mary Trump, Donald’s niece, who disavowed him and became a star of the intelligentsia. She decided that the best way to insult Nikki Haley this week was by highlighting that she’s Indian, because Nikki is a nickname for Nimrata.
Again, this is a real statement Mary Trump released on Twitter: “First of all, fuck you Nimrata Haley.”First of all, fuck you Nimrata Haley. Second, you are a racist, anti-American sell-out. Third, my friend @DeeTwoCents has more integrity, intelligence, passion, and decency in one fingernail than you have in your entire being. Finally, @NikkiHaley, you will never be president.
Sorry, I’m slow: If you’re a white person trying to insult someone who’s not white and you do it by highlighting their race, what’s that called again? I’m sure there’s a Robin DiAngelo chapter on this somewhere.
Given Trump’s own proclivities, this is probably only a small taste of what Haley can expect. She can absolutely count on getting the Carly Fiorina Treatment.
Writing in the Atlantic, Sara Isgur flashes back to Trump’s encounter with a female opponent.
In the fall of 2015, Trump was giving an interview to Rolling Stone when he saw Fiorina pop up on a nearby TV screen. “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?!” he told the magazine. “I mean, she’s a woman, and I’m not [supposed to] say bad things, but really, folks, come on. Are we serious?”
Fiorina was asked about the quote during the Reagan Library debate, and although our campaign team had of course talked about Trump’s comments, we’d never rehearsed her answer. “I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said,” she replied, to applause.
Isgur spins this as a win for Fiorina; but whatever bump she got was fleeting and quickly forgotten.
The real significance of the moment?
The GOP accepted Trump’s crude sexism. Six years later, this sort of thing is imprinted in the GOP’s DNA. Haley knows that, right?
ICYMI: After a conversation about Dog Shirts and the disadvantages of wearing pants, Lawfare’s Ben Wittes and I discussed the latest legal developments in the case of The United States v. Donald J. Trump.
You can listen to the whole thing here.
In today’s Bulwark: “Special Counsel Jack Smith and the Subpoena Battles.”
The War Over JK Rowling
Keep an eye on this whole story. On Thursday — a day after two open letters signed by hundreds of its own staff and celebrities accused The New York Times of anti-trans bias — the paper published an op-ed defending J.K. Rowling against her critics.
“Trans people need and deserve protection.”
“I believe the majority of trans-identified people not only pose zero threat to others but are vulnerable.”
“I respect every trans person’s right to live any way that feels authentic and comfortable to them.”
“I feel nothing but empathy and solidarity with trans women who’ve been abused by men.”
These statements were written by J.K. Rowling, the author of the “Harry Potter” series, a human-rights activist and — according to a noisy fringe of the internet and a number of powerful transgender rights activists and L.G.B.T.Q. lobbying groups — a transphobe.
The article by Pamela Paul comes as Rowling herself has decided to speak out.
Now, in rare and wide-ranging interviews for the podcast series “The Witch Trials of J.K. Rowling,” which begins next week, Rowling is sharing her experiences. “I have had direct threats of violence, and I have had people coming to my house where my kids live, and I’ve had my address posted online,” she says in one of the interviews. “I’ve had what the police, anyway, would regard as credible threats.”
This campaign against Rowling is as dangerous as it is absurd. The brutal stabbing of Salman Rushdie last summer is a forceful reminder of what can happen when writers are demonized. And in Rowling’s case, the characterization of her as a transphobe doesn’t square with her actual views….
Defending those who have been scorned isn’t easy, especially for young people. It’s scary to stand up to bullies, as any “Harry Potter” reader knows. Let the grown-ups in the room lead the way. If more people stood up for J.K. Rowling, they would not only be doing right by her; they’d also be standing up for human rights, specifically women’s rights, gay rights and, yes, transgender rights. They’d also be standing up for the truth.
It is a bit of an understatement to say that the blowback to the Time’s defense of Rowling was… intense.
Harvard Law School Cyberlaw instructor Alejandra Caraballo called the column “bullshit,” and linked it to the murder of a trans teenager in Britain. “They don’t care,” she wrote. “The cruelty is the point.” A journalist named Liam McGuire declared that the newspaper should be ashamed of itself for publishing the op ed, adding for good measure that was “a monster.” And the Human Rights Campaign launched an online campaign to “Tell the New York Times to Stop Publishing Anti-Trans Stories!”
Shut up, they explained….
But…. The Times seems to be standing firm.
The Times issued a response defending its journalism, and its subsequent decision to publish the pro-Rowling piece indicates the paper has not been deterred from sharing a range of views in the debate. ..
When is a woman in her prime?
2 3 5 7 11 13 17 19 23 29 31 37 41 43 47 53 59 61 67 71 73
79 83 89 97 101 103 107 109 113
Charlie, Ask Paul Ryan specifically about these texts and why the Fox Board is fine with them. Also specifically him what the board will now do.