As the anti-Trump Women's March in Washington eclipsed Donald Trump's relatively sparsely-attended inauguration, Fox News seemed intent on covering it as little as possible.
According to the Women's March website, the march began with a rally at 10:00 AM ET, followed by the march at 1:15 PM. But whle CNN and MSNBC covered the star-studded rally, Fox News spent that time covering Trump's attendance at the inaugural prayer service and then talking about his attendance at the inaugural prayer service.
At 10:10 AM, Fox awaited Trump's arrival for the prayer service.
At 10:26, Fox was still waiting for the prayer service.
By 10:40, the prayer service had begun.
At 11:25, Fox was still covering the prayer service.
At 11:38, we saw Trump leaving the prayer service.
By 11:42, the prayer service was over and Trump was gone. But instead of covering the rally, Fox was now talking about the prayer service.
Next, Fox discussed Trump's agenda with newly-minted Fox News contributor and white nationalist, Nigel Farage.
At 11:56, Fox was talking about Trump and pretending to care about unity with Alveda King:
At 12:01, you can see that CNN was already in the midst of its coverage of the marches in the U.S. and around the world:
So was MSNBC:
But Fox was recapping Trump at the prayer service:
Meanwhile, after Sean Spicer accused the media of understating Donald Trump's inaugural crowd size, Twitter has been on fire proving him wrong. Here's one photo comparing the crowd for his inauguration to Barack Obama's 2009 inauguration:
Keep retweeting this, people. Dear Leader has banned the National Park Agency, the ones who orig. tweeted it, from tweeting: pic.twitter.com/1hbuShma9Z— Misgivings (@lacunalingua) January 21, 2017
And CNN put together a gif comparing Trump's inauguration to the Women's March. Guess which one had the bigger crowd?
Our nation began with a series of protests such as the Stamp Act Congress, the Boston Massacre, the Boston Tea Party, the First Continental Congress, etc. Some of those protests involved illegal activities but have been considered as part of the lead-in to the American Revolution. Protests against slavery and the inability of women to vote have happened since the USA came into being. In more recent memory there were the protests against the Vietnam War that led our government to reverse course.
One of the recurrent memes on Facebook is that this protest was just whining, since no one’s rights have been compromised. To those that feel this way, maybe they don’t remember the Tea Party protests of 2009-10 – none of those participating had been harmed by the policies of President Obama, yet they felt it was appropriate to be marching and making noise about their concerns.
I personally think we can be big enough to allow others to express their feelings because there may be a time when we will want to express our own. What do you think?
President Trump threw down the gauntlet and it was picked up with gusto by CNN. Anchor after anchor, panelist after panelist, almost all are eager to fill in the gaps and expose the lies by providing demonstrable facts (like the comparison of photos of crowd size). The sychophants are twisting themselves into knots (pretzels) and their arguments are met with increasing scorn. Jeffrey Lord is so embarrassing to watch, I almost feel sorry for him. So refreshing to hear more about the First Amendment than the Second. (I’m unable to get the national channels (ABC, NBC, CBS): are they doing the same?)
Sean Spicer once had a good reputation in Washington but his colleagues are perplexed at best, appalled at worst. He shouted out a text written by others, doing so (as one panelist nicely put it) : “… for one person, namely his boss”. I understood that to mean “He had to do it to keep his job.”
Need I say that the media over here are all over this story? The traditionally pro-American sides are deeply embarrassed (“we fought for this?”) and the populists are gleeful (hopefully prematurely). Pope Francis, himself, prayed for better behaviour, noting that Hitler was a product of populism. I would add Mussolini and, more recently, Duterte.
1. The marches around the country and in DC firmly outpaced the relatively small turnout for the Trump/Pence coronation. Yesterday’s event turns out to have been a smaller affair than anticipated and the smallest one we’ve seen in decades. The Trump supporters had hoped they would see something like 500K present at the event, but it’s clear that they didn’t get anything near that number. And they floundered in the ratings as well, coming in behind the Obama events and far behind the record set by Ronald Reagan in 1981. In comparison, the marches today were much larger affairs – making a strong case that the majority of this country does not agree with the bullying and the viciousness of the Pence White House and its stated intentions. And for those who are trying to say that the wide shot of the grounds during the Trump event was somehow from 530am or 8am, I have to point out that the item was tagged as right before noon, and that the shot could not have been taken early in the morning. It was a foggy, cold, rainy day and the sun wasn’t rising until around 8am. I know the Right desperately wants Trump to have had the same turnout as Obama did in 2009 but they didn’t. In the same way that they only squeaked through in the election, they simply didn’t have that many people running out to see them in person or tuning their televisions to the event.
2. Sean Spicer’s despicable tantrum in front of the White House press corps is a grim omen of what is coming over the next four years. He literally went into the room and shouted a stream of demonstrable lies to the press and then stomped out of the room. The CNN report on his meltdown is instructive, as they pointed out in each case where he was lying, and to what extent. If this was meant to bully the press into doing as they were told, it in fact had the reverse effect. It’s obvious that Spicer thinks he can get away with this – it being The Year of the Bully, after all. But the journalists covering him may not be on the same page. The fact that Spicer thought he could get away with obvious falsehoods on the strength of his bravado is quite telling. His next presser should be interesting – I don’t believe the journalists will let him live this down for some time.
3. Trump’s visit to the CIA was sadly marked by his usual inability to focus on anything other than his narcissism and his obsession with any slight. It’s telling that the intelligence people who had to listen to it were shocked at Trump’s display. And it’s unprecedented for this visit to get a solid rebuke where the outgoing head of the agency is clear that the Tweeter-in-Chief should be ashamed of himself.
Behind the scenes of all this, Trump’s people erased vital materials from the White House website (which is why so many have been archiving the valuable research on climate change, etc), and Trump happily signed an executive order to make it harder for lower income people to get a mortgage, and the expected one to gut the ACA. (Trump’s first salvo removes all the requirements and mandates, making it up to each agency whether they wish to enforce anything. This means the individual mandate is gone, as are all the required coverage issues. Meaning that the insurers now have no reason to stay with the ACA and will begin backing out immediately. The incoming bill from Congress will finish this off and we can get back to where we were in 2009, before Barack Obama had the temerity to try this.)
Looking forward to next week, when the Pence White House gets to work on deporting undocumented immigrants, building a wall against Mexico, unraveling our various treaties (TPP, Paris Accords, Cuba, Iran, etc) and announces either William Pryor or Mike Lee to be inflicted on the Supreme Court. Expect Fox News to cheerlead all the way.