Tuesday, October 6, 2020

the last book I ever read (Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth by Brian Stelter, excerpt thirteen)

from Hoax: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth by Brian Stelter:

“Depending upon how you look at them,” he added, “it might be enough to prosecute.”

Napolitano made the same points in a video for his Fox web show, and it went viral on social media. Liberals were thrilled—here was the senior judicial analyst for Fox News telling the truth about Trump’s crimes! Napolitano said Trump’s acts were “immoral, criminal, defenseless, and condemnable.” But he was on the outside—literally—as his video was recorded outside Fox News HQ, in a handheld, shaky-cam style the judge liked, making him look like a renegade. The video garnered so much attention that The Ingraham Angle sought to rebut it—not by booking Napolitano and challenging him, as a normal network would do, but by playing a clip, and then giving Alan Dershowitz plenty of time to reassure everyone that the president was innocent. Trump noticed. “Thank you to brilliant and highly respected attorney Alan Dershowitz for destroying the very dumb legal argument of ‘Judge’ Andrew Napolitano,” Trump tweeted the next day. “Ever since Andrew came to my office to ask that I appoint him to the U.S. Supreme Court, and I said NO, he has been very hostile! Also asked for pardon for his friend.”

The judge denied asking for a SCOTUS appointment, and no reasonable person believed that he actually did. Napolitano recognized what most other Fox figures refused to admit: that Trump lied through his Twitter teeth each and every day. Trump had just hit the 10,000 mark in The Washington Post’s count of false and misleading statements, including 45 falsehoods in his most rcent 45-minute chat with Hannity. That’s a piece of misinformation every single minute. But his professional excusers on television said he simply had a unique style of communicating.

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