Maybe it’s a sad indictment on my said life, but watching Donald Trump and Fox News duke it out in social media and in the press is my favorite thing ever. Well, okay, not ever ever, just you know, in terms of right here, and right now.
In the ultimate case of “He Said Bullshit and She Said Bullshit,” you have Trump and Fox’s Megyn Kelly. Granted, in this isolated instance Kelly has the moral high ground. After all, what kind of chump-o thinks he can be president while being afraid of the media, especially when the media outlet in question is the one that is most easily identified as being “on your team”? If this isn’t the unraveling of the relationship between the GOP and its darling “news” channel, then I truly don’t know what is. Trump is anti-establishment, and Fox is now the ironic establishment. It’s ironic you see because the impetus for the network in the first place was the alleged establishment bias of the “liberal media.”
Because Trump is anti-establishment, he speaks to the people who for decades have believed every crazy, bullshit lie and conspiracy theory about their government and particularly any progressive person in it. Suddenly, things are turned on their head as Trump turns the tables on Fox News. I genuinely believe that 25 years ago Trump wouldn’t have made it out of the first week after he announced his candidacy, but in the past couple of decades Fox has helped engender an attitude of hating everyone and everything that doesn’t fit a tightly controlled, spun narrative from the power structures of the conservative movement, and that distrust of everyone has now led to them not trust Fox because they think Roger Ailes is trying to stick them with another “squishy” RINO.
Think about it — the GOP front runner is a man who is pretty cozy with the Clintons and has aligned himself with the leading Democratic candidates on things like prescription drug prices. Somehow, we live in a world where the Republican front runner is saying the same things the Democrats are, but since he’s not seen as being part of the “establishment” by his base, he can run and cower from reporters lobbing him pretty softball questions and he’s seen as being the “good one” to the GOP’s base.
The people at Fox News, or anyone in the conservative movement, who are acting surprised by Trump’s popularity and staying power are either incredibly naive, or so fucking cynical that they literally cannot and will not admit that Trump is a monster all of their own making. In a truly scary twist, he could actually not only win the nomination of his party, but the whole damned election. Don’t believe me? Ronald Reagan was also a B-grade, talent-free celebrity at one time too. Yet, despite his very real chances at winning it all, the Republican “establishment” is trying to kill his candidacy and has been since the start…but why?
Because he’s laying bare all the idiocy their rhetoric has to offer, that’s why. He’s essentially standing in front of the world and shouting, “We Republicans have no clothes!” What sane person in 2016 thinks that we should keep all Muslims out of our country? What rational, thinking human being in this day and age actually believes that a massive, expensive wall on the southern border would do anything about the 11 million undocumented people already living here? What idiotic human being thinks that they can just bully people on the international stage and there won’t be serious repercussions both here and abroad? What kind of shit-bird in this century openly flouts his ties to white nationalists?
Republicans do. Well, okay, they typically don’t do any of that shit out in the open, which is absolutely, positively why they are so desperate to shut Trump up. He’s like the guy at the poker table who shouts about the dealer giving him a flush six hands in a row. The jig will be up if he keeps going, and the Republicans are terrified. Of course Fox News is terrified too, because they have been the willing accomplices in creating the dual-country we have — conservative and everyone else. That divide is why Fox and Trump are fighting it out now, and that divide could very easily permanently sever and fracture the party forever. Don’t believe me? Ask the Whigs.
And that, my friends, is why Trump vs. Fox News is my favorite(ish) thing ever(ish).