It has long been established that Donald Trump is a malignant narcissist whose sociopathic obsessions produce a total lack of concern for anything or anyone other than himself. That sort of sickness can manifest in peculiar ways. Not only will such a person viciously castigate friends and enemies alike when sufficient adoration is not forthcoming, he might also embrace bitter foes should they offer a random compliment.
On Tuesday morning Trump had a hell-freezes-over moment. He tweeted praise for CNN, the network he rarely mentions without adding the derogatory prefix, “fake news.” His description of them in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people” is almost robotically attached to every reference he makes. But on the morning following the first day of the Dystopian Republican National Abomination, Trump took to his Twitter machine and posted this:
Legitimate news networks don't ordinarily get praised for reporting the news. But in Trump's world the only thing that's relevant is if he perceives the report to be beneficial to him. Consequently, he's appreciative of CNN for airing what he believes was two hours of a joyous celebration of Trump. Never mind that the program was neither joyous nor beneficial. In fact, the convention that Trump promised would be overwhelmingly optimistic and hopeful was more like a nightmarish devolution into fear mongering.
— The Recount (@therecount) August 25, 2020
So in a way, Trump was right. Broadcasting more of this convention would be “good for our country.” But only because the more people saw, the more likely they would be to vote for Joe Biden.
Trump wasn't the only one to notice the disparity in coverage from one network to another. His cult disciples were keenly aware that Fox News was repeatedly cutting away from the prerecorded speeches to feature the babbling of their anchors and analysts instead. The Trumpians didn't like that one bit and they let it be known on Twitter:
— Mark Dice (@MarkDice) August 25, 2020
— Catturd ™ (@catturd2) August 25, 2020
— Matt Couch (@RealMattCouch) August 25, 2020
— David Wohl (@DavidWohl) August 25, 2020
— Anthony Brian Logan (ABL) 🇺🇸 (@ANTHONYBLOGAN) August 25, 2020
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) August 25, 2020
— Brad Parscale (@parscale) August 25, 2020
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) August 25, 2020
The comment by Brad Parscale is notable because he is the senior advisor (and recently demoted chairman) to Trump's reelection campaign. But the criticism of Hannity was especially delightful. Hannity actually cut away from the convention to whine about other networks possibly cutting away from the convention, even while the other networks were airing the convention that Hannity was talking over.
It's entirely possibly that some of the segments that Fox News declined to air were purposefully excised from their broadcast to avoid hurting Trump. The convention speeches were mostly prerecorded. So Fox News knew the content and tone before they went to air. It's possible, therefore, that they may have seen the Guilfoyle harangue and chose not to subject their audience to what later became the most mocked address of the night. However, it's also possible that another reason entered into Fox's decision to erase Guilfoyle. She was, after all, fired by Fox News in 2018 for alleged sexual misconduct.
Trump's sudden affection for CNN is unlikely to last for more than a day or two, if that. He will soon flip back to his predictable hostility as soon as anyone on CNN is even modestly critical. Meanwhile, Trump's love/hate relationship with Fox News will continue as usual with him slobbering over sycophantic admirers like Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Tucker Carlson, Lou Dobbs and the “Curvy Couch” potatoes of Fox and Friends, and vehemently berating those who fail to worship him with unflinching devotion.
In the meantime, we'll see if this attempt to work the refs results in changes of coverage for the remaining three days of the convention. But Trump really needs to be careful what he wishes for. By adding more coverage he will only be assuring that more people will witness the repugnance of his alleged personality and the blind reverence of the Republican cult. Which would be, once again, good for America to see.
Also, visit News Corpse on the web.
And check out my books on Amazon: