Desperate Pandering

Fox News

Like many others, I’ve previously vented about the primetime hosts at Fox “News” and their flagrant pandering to the MAGA universe, creating a poisonous cycle by which misinformed opinions follow skewed reporting and vice versa, otherwise known as garbage in, garbage out.  What has been revealed by the $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems against Fox proves what many of us already knew—that Fox prime-time hosts are nothing but desperate, right-wing whores catering to the misguided beliefs of their MAGA audience. These people aren’t even legitimate performers or personalities, let alone respectable journalists.  Like the MAGA’s hero, Donald Trump, they’re essentially grifters who landed a highly profitable gig. And like Trump, there are seemingly no lies they won’t promote to defend their own self-aggrandizement.

Their desperate pursuit of ratings has led this gruesome little cadre to pander to the worst angels of MAGA nature, as if the harm done to our country is nothing but collateral damage. Their nurturing of racist hatred has evolved from a dog whistle to openly promoting white supremacist conspiracy theories. They’ve portrayed the situation at our southern border as a radical-left plot to take the country away from “real” white Americans, spewing phrases like “change the racial mix of the country,” and “replace the current electorate.” The list goes on and on.  But then they made the cynical, ill-fated decision to promote Trump’s “big lie” about the 2020 election, despite knowing full well it was, to quote Trump’s attorney general, Bill Barr, “bullshit.”

Is it possible “we report, you decide” was nothing but one big grift from the start?  It seems there is no bullshit Fox News and the rest of right-wing media won’t promote if it suits the mythology embraced by their aging MAGA audience—essentially their cherished belief that a mythical white America of yesteryear was a perfect place that has been destroyed by “liberal elitists” and “radical leftists” (increasingly referred to as the “woke mob”). Does their MAGA audience even care if they were being lied to about the 2020 election?  Probably not; they just want to see “their side” promoted and reenforced, the truth be damned.

If Fox News Hosts Told the Truth, MAGAs Would Consider it a Betrayal.

News Corporation

The problem is, the MAGA audience doesn’t want to know the truth, increasingly finds the truth unbearable, and thus has an insatiable need to be soothed by lies. They’re hell-bent on hanging onto their fantasies, reality be as damned as the truth. They’re so desperate to win, whether it be elections, their fanatical culture wars, or their “existential” battle to save America and “their way of life,” they can hardly see straight.  These people don’t like things as they are, hate what America has become (what it must become, as James Baldwin said), and are fighting the long arc of the moral universe every way they can, Martin Luther King’s bend toward justice be no less damned than the truth and reality. 

Based on the revelations contained in the Dominion filing, the Fox News hosts have been accused of disrespecting their MAGA audience, but this humble spirit fears the economic imperative (Rupert Murdoch’s profits) has led them to respect that audience far too much. There is seemingly no level they won’t sink to in order to keep them coming back for more.  Indeed, MAGAs have become the only God they worship.

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