Fox News Tries To Slay Donald Trump, Gets 'A' For Effort
The Warriors Three.
Last night, Fox News surprised the hell out of us. Not by trying in valiant vain to slay the Beast Who Mocks, Donald Trump -- we knew they'd do that. What we didn't expect is that they would employ something resembling actual journalism in their efforts. Who knew Fox was capable of that?! They should try it more often. Or ever.
It's been a difficult few months for conservatives. All efforts to stop the mighty Trump have been in vain. Finally, in a last act of desperation, Roger Ailes sent his three fiercest warriors -- Chris Wallace, Megyn Kelly, and Bret Baier -- to attempt to slay the beast on Thursday night.
Wallace got things started by attempting to force Trump to answer a question with something other than a personal insult:
WALLACE: Mr. Trump, as you may have heard, the 2012 Republican nominee for President, Mitt Romney, had some things to say about you today.
He challenged you to answer with substance, not insults. How do you answer Mitt Romney, sir?
This shot across Trump's bow went about as well as you might expect:
TRUMP: Well look, he was a failed candidate, he should have beaten president Obama very easy.
There is literally no possible way to get Trump not to respond to criticism with anything other than a personal insult. It simply can't be done.
After a brief interlude in which the Donald felt the need to reassure the frightened villagers that his mighty Trumpschlong was in fact powerful and tumescent and NOT stubby and lacking in girth, as SOME LITTLE PUNY MEN WHO WOULD REMAIN NAMELESS had claimed, Wallace tried again.
First, Wallace baited Trump by asking what programs he would cut to pay for his massive proposed tax cut, then when Trump said "the Department of Education and the EPA" (he actually said "the Department of Environmental Protection," which doesn't exist, but fuck it, no one ever said Trump knew actual facts), Wallace responded:
Mr. Trump, your numbers don't add up. Please put up full screen number four. The Education Department, you talk about cutting, the total budget for the education department is $78 billion.
And that includes Pell grants for low-income students and aid to states for special education. I assume you wouldn't cut those things. The entire budget for the EPA, the Environmental Protection Agency, $8 billion.
WALLACE: The deficit this year is $544 billion. That's more than a half trillion dollars. Your numbers don't add up, sir.
Say this for Fox: they know their viewers don't understand words so good, and that pretty pictures are necessary to make their point. This, though, was frankly staggering. Can anyone remember an instance of a moderator in a presidential debate using charts, figures, and graphics as an open "fuck you" to a candidate? We're not saying it hasn't happened before, but if it has, we can't recall it.
It actually got more incredible, because when Trump tried to say "we'll save on pharmaceutical prices," Wallace had ANOTHER graphic ready to go:
Let's put up full screen number 2.
You say that Medicare could save $300 billion a year negotiating lower drug prices. But Medicare total only spends $78 billion a year on drugs. Sir, that's the facts. You are talking about saving more money on Medicare prescription drugs...
Trump had no answer -- not that the frightened, mesmerized townspeople cared. All this did was make them boo with more angry gusto at the moderators who dared to ask their hero questions about actual objective reality.
When it was Bret Baier's turn to battle The Adversary, he opted for a more simplistic approach:
BAIER: Mr. Trump, just yesterday, almost 100 foreign policy experts signed on to an open letter refusing to support you, saying your embracing expansive use of torture is inexcusable. General Michael Hayden, former CIA director, NSA director, and other experts have said that when you asked the U.S. military to carry out some of your campaign promises, specifically targeting terrorists' families, and also the use of interrogation methods more extreme than waterboarding, the military will refuse because they've been trained to turn down and refuse illegal orders.
So what would you do, as commander-in-chief, if the U.S. military refused to carry out those orders?
TRUMP: They won't refuse. They're not going to refuse me. Believe me.
BAIER: But they're illegal.
Bret still seems to be operating off the delusion that Trump or his followers give one single solitary fuck about legality and basic human decency (or reality). LOLNOPE.
[contextly_sidebar id="haDRBMIDNjKYFxsIAHpXyR1gfILbVNUz"]Finally, Megyn Kelly, greatest of the Warriors Three, stepped to the fore. Megyn had not come to play (her hair appeared to have been meticulously set with the blood of her enemies), and it soon became apparent she'd been itching for a rematch (possibly in her wherever) since their last confrontation. The pseudo-friendly "Hi!" exchange between her and Trump that led their confrontation was as a swordsman's salute to what would come later:
KELLY: Mr. Trump, one of the things people love about you is they believe you tell it like it is. But time and time again in this campaign, you have actually told the voters one thing only to reverse yourself within weeks or even sometimes days. We've teed up just three examples in a videotape, similar to those we used with Senator Rubio and Senator Cruz in the last debate. The first is on whether the war in Afghanistan was a mistake. Watch.
Kelly proceeded to systematically eviscerate Trump on a series of flip flops, all but asking him "so aren't you a miserable fucking liar?" It was actual journalism of the sort that barely exists anymore. Were this any normal beast, Megyn's barbs would surely have struck home.
But Trump is no average monster. When faced with direct video evidence of his complete lack of principles, he basically just said "yeah, well, fuck you" and turned into a human shruggie. And it will work. Of COURSE it will work.
Fox spent the entire debate essentially beating Trump over the head with steel chairs while he laughed at their weak loser bludgeoning game. Because what Megyn Kelly, Chris Wallace, Bret Baier, and the rest of Fox News don't seem to have internalized is that they're dealing with a fiend capable of shouting "NUH UH I'M IMMUNE TO THE LAVA AND ALSO I WIN FOREVER YEY DONALD" like a 3rd-grader tweaking on pixie sticks, and somehow having it work. Fox is making the same mistake everyone else has thus far -- they're assuming Donald Trump can be defeated by logic and reason (or what passes for it on the right, anyway).
The truth is that there is no silver bullet inscribed with holy facts and figures that will have any effect on Trump's popularity with Republican voters. You can pound however many stakes you want through Trump's heart, and he's just going to turn around and give you the middle finger, then guarantee you his penis is tremendous. You can put salt in the doorways and windows, and Trump will confidently stride right through them, declaring his exclusive-for-everyone club is far classier than this dump. Simply put, there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- conservatives can do to halt the tide of Trump.
And we're loving every goddamned minute of it.