Trump is Pandering to Border Hawks with Political Stunts, While Actually Betraying Their Cause

If there was just one reality about our modern politics that I could magically make the average person understand, it is that the truth is very often not just different from the common perception, but actually the exact opposite of it. There is currently no better example of this than President Donald Trump and the issue of illegal immigration, which he has cynically made the centerpiece of the GOP’s midterm election campaign. The widely-held perception, at least among Republicans, is that Trump, who has talked tough on border issues since the moment he began his presidential campaign more than three years ago, is the greatest thing that has happened in our modern history for curtailing illegal immigration. The reality is that he has actually done very little, if anything, to help deal with the problem. And he has actually ensured that nothing he ever promotes about the issue will actually Continue reading "Trump is Pandering to Border Hawks with Political Stunts, While Actually Betraying Their Cause"

Why Split Control of Congress is the Least Bad Election Scenario for Our Fractured Nation

We live in era which is not big on nuance. Presidential tweets have far more impact than well-researched books. Declarative phrases like “Fake News!” are now seen by millions of voters as a legitimate presidential response to massive front-page investigations in The New York Times. Everything is either black or white. One side either won, or they lost. There is almost no room for anything in between because, among other factors, the media’s need for a drama-filled, simple-minded, short-attention-span narrative demands that there be no ambiguity about an outcome. It is this context in which we are about to have maybe the most significant midterm election in our nation’s history (for real). Based on the conventional wisdom, there is an excellent chance that we are going to end up with a split decision, with Democrats taking control of the House, and Republicans maintaining a slim but sturdy majority in Continue reading "Why Split Control of Congress is the Least Bad Election Scenario for Our Fractured Nation"

Trump Ramps Up Fear-Mongering: Caravans Made up of ‘Very Bad Thugs and Gang Members’

President Donald Trump is nothing if not consistent. Despite significant and bipartisan criticism for irresponsible and dangerous rhetoric that critics have described as fear-mongering, Trump is hitting the same “be afraid of the Caravan” note on Twitter this morning. Trump tweeted: He followed that first tweet shortly after with:

Fox News Is Cancerous. I Won’t Be A Part Of It.

I can no longer in good conscience appear on Fox News as one of its regular liberal talking heads, especially after the recent acts of right-wing violence. This is not a decision I’ve come to lightly. For a long time, I believed it was important for Fox’s audience to hear somebody willing to push back against the insanity regularly pushed on the network. But now I believe the only thing to do is walk away and call out the network for what it is: a cancerous propaganda organ doing lasting damage to our country. My change in thinking began after witnessing how the network handled my on-air interaction with former Trump campaign manager Cory Lewandowski. He infamously mocked the plight of a ten-year-old girl with Down Syndrome forcibly separated from her mother at the border. Our exchange went viral immediately and played on a loop on CNN, MSNBC, late night Continue reading "Fox News Is Cancerous. I Won’t Be A Part Of It."

Fox News Continues Caravan ‘Invasion’ Coverage Two Days After Man Fearful of Immigrants Killed 11 in Synagogue

Depending on the reports from the field, there are currently anywhere from 3,500 to 7,000 Central Americans near the Mexico-Guatemalan border, very slowing making their way towards the U.S. Southern border, which is over 1,000 miles away. It’s not clear many will even complete the trip. This caravan of migrants has been described as a great threat to national security by President Donald Trump, who has admitted he has no proof in his claim there are “Middle Easterners” amongst this group, in an ugly xenophobic suggestion that somehow terrorists are looking to enter the United States after first walking, for six weeks, the entire length of Mexico. Just today Trump tweeted:

Megyn Kelly’s Demise at NBC Spells the End of the Serious Network Talk Show

Less than two years ago, Megyn Kelly was the biggest new star of NBC News and was supposed to revolutionize the network talk show format. By Monday, she likely will not even be allowed in the building at 30 Rockefeller Center without an escort, and the news-based, opinion-oriented talk show is likely dead for the foreseeable future. All of this is supposedly happening because of the “blackface” controversy into which she stepped during a seemingly harmless segment about Halloween costumes. But, in the real world, that had almost nothing to do with her demise. Let’s be clear. She didn’t do her show IN blackface. She didn’t urge kids to use blackface in their Halloween costumes. All she really did was, inartfully, ask a question which, under better circumstances, might have actually made for an interesting discussion. Immediately, a huge firestorm erupted on Twitter, fueled by forces which had almost Continue reading "Megyn Kelly’s Demise at NBC Spells the End of the Serious Network Talk Show"

Sorry Conservative Media, But WhatAboutism in Response to Pro-Trump Mail Bomber Just Doesn’t Fly

Federal authorities have arrested a prime suspect in the mailing of explosive devices to democratic leaders who have been openly critical of President Donald Trump. Much has been made of the pro-Trump and violent anti-Democratic imagery on the van that authorities seized, and the social media feed of the man in custody paint an almost cartoonish portrait of a Trump supporter who dangerously took the Commander in Chief’s hyperbolic rhetoric quite literally. It is the latest example of just how heated the political discourse has become too dangerous, reaching life-threatening levels. And reasonable people on both sides of the political aisle have called for a time of calm and reflection, to tone down the vitriol despite a midterm election just 11 days away. But anyone expecting a transcendent moment to come as a result of this really ugly stain on American history is sure to be disappointed. Because while the conversation has changed a Continue reading "Sorry Conservative Media, But WhatAboutism in Response to Pro-Trump Mail Bomber Just Doesn’t Fly"