New Policy Advisor: Fox News

Carlson TuckerU.S. Foreign Policy is now apparently driven by Fox News!  On Wednesday evening, Tucker Carlson of Fox News made the claim that South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was illegally seizing land from white farmers in South Africa.  As we all know, Donald Trump gets all his news from Fox News, but apparently he gets his foreign policy briefings from Fox also.Trump tweet 1

Note that 126,000 people liked this.  That speaks volumes, don’t you think?

It is immediately and painfully obvious that Donald Trump is not familiar with the history of South Africa. A bit of history here:

To understand, we need to look at South Africa’s colonial past when, despite the nation being more than 80% black, a small white minority held power.  One crucial way the white government preserved that power was the 1913 Natives Land Act, a law that banned Africans — the vast majority of the population — from acquiring agricultural land.  In 1994, South Africa became a majority-black government, but today blacks own only 4% of the country’s farms and agricultural holdings.

President Cyril Ramaphosa and the ruling party, the African National Congress are developing land reform policies that will include re-distribution of agricultural land that was seized during apartheid by whites.  The party is pushing for the ability to expropriate some land seized by white South Africans during apartheid.  However, Tucker Carlson’s claim is false, for the South African government is not currently “seizing land from white farmers.”

The Government of South Africa, understandably, hit back …south-africa-tweet.pngTrump does not have the facts, but instead has only what he learned by listening to Tucker Carlson, and as such, chose to spout from his mouth … er, fingertips … and has now created discord between the U.S. and South Africa.  Where are Trump’s foreign policy advisors???  Does he have any?  Perhaps Kellyanne is now advising him on South Africa?  Picture it … “Oh yes, Donald, South Africa … there are … well, black people live there and … they … um … mine diamonds?  Ohhhh … I love diamonds, Donald!”

But the danger of Trump relying on Fox News for his information goes far deeper than even this.  As I read this story on the NPR news site a number of scenarios played out in my mind.

The danger in all fake news and all conspiracy theories is that all it takes is one idiot with a firearm who believes the story, and people die.  Remember the story promoted by Mike Cernovich, that Hillary Clinton and her campaign chief, John D. Podesta were kidnapping, molesting and trafficking children in a restaurant’s back rooms, or according to one version, in tunnels beneath the restaurant. One mentally unstable man, Edgar Maddison Welch, believed the story, entered Cosmic Ping Pong Pizzeria with two weapons, and started shooting willy-nilly.  Luckily, he wasn’t a very good shot and nobody was hurt.

And remember how Alex Jones claimed that the mass school shooting at Sandy Hook in 2012 was a ‘false flag’ operation, that it never really happened, and that the grieving parents were paid actors?  And remember how people who believed Jones’ lies threatened and harassed those grieving parents.  One family even had to move 7 times to keep their surviving children safe from those who issued death threats.

So yes, my friends, there is a very real danger to fake news, and when the president, the leader of the nation, believes that fake news and uses his large, powerful voice to promote it, the potential for disaster is very near the surface.

What happens when Tucker Carlson or Sean Hannity or Laura Ingraham mention on their show one evening that they have discovered that congressional democrats are plotting with military generals to effect a military coup, removing Donald Trump from the White House in the middle of the night and executing him by firing squad in DuPont Plaza?  Far-fetched?  Yes, but so was Pizzagate.  Would Donald Trump believe it?  Heck yes, for he is as paranoid as any other corrupt and dishonest leader, and always assumes people are “out to get him”.

Or what happens when one of the Fox people claim to have it on good faith that in cities all across the nation, democrats are quietly planning mass uprisings in order to _______________________________________  (use your imagination to fill in the blank) and Trump, fully believing it, calls for martial law in every major city?  Ridiculous?  Certainly, but impossible?  Nope.  We have seen too many things over the past 19 months that we once thought impossible.  For those who would argue that the Constitution and other institutions are in place to prevent such a thing from happening, to place some controls on the president, I answer that the effectiveness of any institution relies on the people who are in charge of overseeing it, in this case Congress and the courts.  Get the picture?

It is bad enough when conspiracy theories, put forth by the likes of Fox News, InfoWars and Breitbart are believed by a handful of people.  When the president of the United States believes such nonsense and passes it along as if it were true, then he lends legitimacy to the lie and stirs a shitstorm.  People die.  Fox News has suddenly become a very powerful presence in the media, without having the sense of responsibility that needs to accompany such power.

If Donald Trump is taking his information from Fox News and making real-life decisions based on falsehoods … well, just think about that one for a while …

Have a great weekend.

38 thoughts on “New Policy Advisor: Fox News

  1. I actually did an internet search on ‘South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was illegally seizing land from white farmers in South Africa’ using Duck, Duck Go search engine rather than Google search…

    Interestingly, this subject goes back to the beginning of the year, where Reuters reported that Ramaphosa was trying to stop the land grabs from white farmers and work toward a fair proposal of land sharing. But I also found another story from RT that said the opposite… since then, all the sensationalist tabloid news media appear to have picked up the latter and run with it.

    RT – Russian influence of propaganda ideas (as is true of most nationalistic media outlets) can twist anything to reflect their own position on events. Fox News is tabloid sensationalism and the fear mongering is tangible.

    I met a couple of white South Africans more than 10 years ago. They had been run off their land during troubled times, so this is not a new story.

    Facts are not facts unless you see them with your own eyes. News from afar is always someone’s (often innacurate) perception.

    We should always know that news should be verified, but these days, that doesn’t happen. This is how wars start.
    We must start thinking differently… OR the powers will have us killing each other over fake news.

    Liked by 1 person

    • So true. I almost think Trump wouldn’t mind starting a war, just so long as it isn’t on U.S. soil. He’s certainly tried with North Korea. The situation in South Africa is too complex to be summed up in a tweet, and I’m betting Mr. Trump isn’t even aware of the terrible manner in which blacks were treated under apartheid, so he really has no place even addressing the topic. But then, when has THAT ever stopped him? Thanks for the research!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I know Hannity is an unofficial advisor and it came as no surprise that Tucker Carlson, another Fox sycophant also has Trump’s ear. It’s bad enough that they’re taking our country down, but when they start meddling in another country’s affairs without having a flippin’ clue as to what’s truly happening, oy! After his tweet, South Africa’s rand dropped by 1.7%.🤦🏻‍♀️ Oh! And speaking of conspiracies that Trump and his acolytes are all too willing to believe in, have you heard about the “Echo Chamber” memo? Things get more and more frightening by the day.🙇🏻‍♀️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I remember “The Situation with Tucker Carlson”, later called just “Tucker”, being on MSNBC about mid 2005 or early 2006. I was working at the time, so the TV was largely background noise and an occasional diversion if time permitted. Tucker appeared as a fresh faced little cutie sporting a bow tie, that he abandoned at some point for whatever reason. I could not tell you what he was supporting then, as I paid little attention to TV the majority of the time. Though, I do remember Willie Geist and Tucker having a spot together at the end of the show. I only paid attention whenever I caught Rachel Maddow on as a panelist, loved her! If memory serves me correctly, the show ended in 2008 and Tucker and I parted ways. Until, things like this are brought to my attention. I never watch Fox news and choose not to read it either. If it is part of Trump’s world, undoubtedly it is not a useful part of mine. I suppose that might be considered as foolish on my part, as one needs to understand the enemy and all that. However, one would also think that a president would have better sources of information than Fox News…this one clearly doesn’t! Thank-you! P.S. Was Tucker always this way?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I wasn’t aware of Tuckers media history … I somehow just thought he had crawled out from under a rock with Hannity, Jones, Ingraham, Coulter and the rest. I agree with you … I never watch Fox News (but then I don’t watch t.v. period.) and wish I didn’t have to read it ever, but in order to write the things I do, I sometimes have to go to the seedier side of town, including 4Chan and Breitbart. I always feel dirty and need a shower afterward. I don’t know if Tucker was always this way, or if he fell under the spell of Trump. I’ll see what I can find out.

      Like

  4. Jill, when people get their information from I reputable sources, they deserve the backlash they get. Yet, Trump has done this more times than a few, and still does not learn his lesson. It is hard enough to govern with real facts, but nigh impossible to do so with stuff that is made up. I just hope he does not attack anyone off this source. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah, Tucker Carlson! What a fine, compassionate, highly intelligent, non-biased. chipper, loving, empathetic man he is! Wait….Sorry, I was thinking if Smucker Carlson, a neighbor of mine who works for the Red Cross. Tucker Carlson? Yeah, he sucks. Good thing Trump and his “Deep State” army of Trumpanzees take all he has to say as the literal word of God, eh. What happened to “nothing you read, hear or see is real”? Yep, Trumpanzees are NOT the brightest candles on the birthday cake of humanity.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This isn’t surprising, and will probably only get worse. The man has no mental acuity to check facts and make sure of truth BEFORE he shoots his mouth off. If something supports his worldview that black is bad and white is good, he will instantly run with it.
    I was talking to a person who grew up in South Africa under apartheid and remembers being taught in Catholic school that black people had no souls, so what was being done to them was okay in god’s eyes. He recalls a Catholic bishop tried to refute that belief. He was taken into custody by the secret police and assassinated.
    Let’s hope Trump never hears that piece of history, or he will be assassinating his accusers by the dozens.

    Liked by 4 people

    • I agree that he doesn’t have the mental acuity to check facts, or even know where to start, BUT … he does have a large staff and some of them even have some expertise in foreign relations! I went to college with a guy whose dad was the chargé d’affaires at the U.S. embassy in Johannesburg, South Africa during the 1970s, and he told similar stories. Trump has no idea of any of the history of the country … or any other, for that matter. But again, he does have advisors who are paid to educate him and help him make decisions. In this case, there was no decision to be made, for there was no issue that pertained to Trump until Tucker opened his yap.

      Like

  7. Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    M’gawd … this is beyond a reality show!! How in the world?
    ‘Carlson Tucker of Fox News made the claim that South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was illegally seizing land from white farmers in South Africa. ‘
    … and Drumpf took off with this strategy!

    Liked by 2 people

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