Fox News not fake enough for El Trumpo

This is a classic for the Murdoch haters out there. The Fox News Frankenstein has come back to eat it:

Shares sank 6%:

AXIOS says El Trumpo will start his own network:

President Trump has told friends he wants to start a digital media company to clobber Fox News and undermine the conservative-friendly network, sources tell Axios.

The state of play: Some Trump advisers think Fox News made a mistake with an early call (seconded by AP) of President-elect Biden’s win in Arizona. That enraged Trump, and gave him something tangible to use in his attacks on the network.

  • “He plans to wreck Fox. No doubt about it,” said a source with detailed knowledge of Trump’s intentions.

With loyal viewers and longtime dominance, Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch said on a Nov. 3 earnings call:

  • “We love competition. We have always thrived with competition. … Fox News has been the number one network, including broadcast networks, … from Labor Day through to Election Day.”

Here’s Trump’s plan, according to the source:

  • There’s been lots of speculation about Trump starting a cable channel. But getting carried on cable systems would be expensive and time-consuming.
  • Instead, Trump is considering a digital media channel that would stream online, which would be cheaper and quicker to start.
  • Trump’s digital offering would likely charge a monthly fee to MAGA fans. Many are Fox News viewers, and he’d aim to replace the network — and the $5.99-a-month Fox Nation streaming service, which has an 85% conversion rate from free trials to paid subscribers — as their top destination.

Trump’s database of email and cellphone contacts would be a huge head start.

  • Trump’s lists are among the most valuable in politics — especially his extensive database of cellphone numbers for text messages.

This could be great news or bad. If an El Trumpo vs Fox bust-up transpires and splits the US loon vote then that would be a great outcome.

But, needless to say, Rupert is no slouch. The moment in the election when Trump declared it a fraud, Fox did not support him. That was the point at which even Rupert’s glorious record of self-promotion ran aground on the reef of dying democratic values. He could have called El Trumpo right then and asked for him for Facebook or Google in exchange for his support but didn’t.

Now that El Trumpo is gunning for Fox and his loony right audience, will Rupert reconsider and shove what’s left of his democratic values a little further out? One move that Fox could make is to swing even further right to protect its commercial interests. Certainly, it is not going to want to see the audience divided.

Even in that event, El Trumpo might go ahead and we’d have two networks competing to out-loon one another on the US right.

That could backfire by losing moderate audiences. Or, it could intensify the loon in the general population. The Guardian reports that a growing list of Republicans are falling in behind Biden:

A number of Senate Republicans now say Joe Biden should receive classified briefings, even as the Trump administration refuses to acknowledge Biden’s victory in the presidential election.

“Our adversaries aren’t going to wait for you to catch up to take action,” said Marco Rubio, the Republican chairman of the Senate intelligence committee.

But Rubio still expressed support for Donald Trump, who continues to peddle baseless accusations of election fraud. “Giving them access to additional information doesn’t prejudice the president’s electoral claims,” Rubio said.

Senators Lindsey Graham, Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins, John Thune, Ron Johnson and Chuck Grassley have also said they believe Biden should begin receiving classified briefings.

The comments underscore the delicate balance Republicans are trying to strike, as they refuse to acknowledge Biden as the president-elect but try to prepare for the incoming administration.

Most credible polls appear to agree that a large slice of Republican voters agrees that El Trumpo lost, so just how much loonier can networks go without narrowing the audience?

Meanwhile, in Australia, Crikey pretty much sums up the latest Murdoch moves:

Yesterday, in a move that smacks of deja vu, the Senate voted to hold an inquiry into Australian media ownership and diversity.

It comes in the wake of a parliamentary petition calling for a royal commission into News Corp and its media concentration, set in motion by former prime minister Kevin Rudd, which attracted more than 500,000 signatories.

Inquiries and probes into media concentration, news conglomerates and media moguls date back to the ’70s in a country where media concentration is one of the highest in the world — although none of these inquiries and investigations have done much to break up or dilute ownership.

I’m not sure a royal commission would change that, frankly. Look at the banks.

Anyways, if some of the mud sticks it has not been a waste of time. If nothing esle, it helped delivered us this pearler:

I just can’t watch that enough.

David Llewellyn-Smith
Latest posts by David Llewellyn-Smith (see all)


  1. Murdoch is not defending democracy but his own interest. Going fully behind Trump have no positive outcome. If Biden wins, Fox News will be destroyed. If Trump wins, the USA becomes a dictatorship and the Trump family will eventually own everything, including Foxs News, Google, Facebook, and Twitter.

    • I hope they rip each other to shreds. Just hope the old coot is alive to see his empire crumble – couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

    • I’ve agreed with a lot of what you’ve written here, but I don’t see either of these ends eventuating.

    • ” If Trump wins, the USA becomes a dictatorship and the Trump family will eventually own everything, including Foxs News, Google, Facebook, and Twitter.”

      Put the crack pipe down

    • Murdoch was quoted calling Trump and idiot before the 2016 election victory.

      He’s never said anything positive about him and I suspect Murdoch is happy about the chaos candidate not being president any longer.

      But if it comes down to knock down, drag out fight between Murdoch and Trump, my money will be on a business predator like Murdoch. Trump is a spoilt trust fund baby in comparison.

      • Murdoch chose to sleep with the Devil in return for ratings and advertising revenue for an ailing network. Time to hand over your soul Rupert if you have one.

  2. I believe a conservative replacement for twitter has also been started….Parler……….both would seem to be echo chambers to me. Looks like I will be stuck with IRC.

  3. Is it me or is the world we live in becoming more surreal by the day.

    Next we’ll have some swivel-eyed loon inventing shyte like critical race theory — and then we’ll really know we’ve hit rock bottom.

    • I recently saw a bunch of American survivalists who had a bunker in frozen tundra say they were preparing for an apocalypse they saw on You Tube.

      Apparently that’s where they got all their information from “Its all on there man, its all there for you to find”

    • I’m a Christian, and I have no interest in it.

      I’ve even heard it’s not really that good compared to FB.

      From what I’ve seen on my FB from some disenfranchised GOP voters, they have almost lost the plot – Trump has been feeding them crazy pills for over 4 years, and they barely know which way is up; they seem to find it hard to tell the difference between a low-quality validity and a genuinely good quality idea. I’m generalising a little, but I’m concerned.

      The idea of a giant echo chamber full of the same can only be orders more toxic than it already is. Ugh. Sad.

      • Narapoia451MEMBER

        Seen a couple people in my family that live over there reacting on FB as well. They haven’t been ranting but it’s clear that they have fully bought into his narrative – and these are not ‘deplorables’ by any means. Intelligent, own businesses, religious like yourself (though how they square christian religious values with the moral and ethical suckhole that is trump I will never understand)

        The delusion over there is real – lots of people seem to genuinely believe his lies – despite so many of them being so obvious and so well documented (I’m sure there’s something in the bible about lying, vague memories from sunday school).

        • Nara,

          Christians tend to vote for Trump-types because of abortion, and other Christianised sentiments thrown around as political theatre. Frankly, Christians ought to be the most discerning people, and no one’s useful idiots.

          Don’t get me wrong: I think abortion is awful, repugnant; but it’s not the only issue. Frankly, issues around economic injustice, rentierism and repression strongly feed into abortion choices but many Christians don’t factor these in! It’s un-Biblical to ignore such ‘unjust scales’! Being Jesus-minded I’m not going to be someone’s useful idiot wrt abortion, as if they can dangle a carrot and I will just give them my vote, support, etc. I think the GOP and LNP play this card. More wisdom and discernment, please…

          /rant over

          That’s my second rant on that topic today…one for MB and one for Facebook…I’m sure my wife and I will rant again when I get home, too!

        • Yeah I don’t get it.

          I see the nice right wing Christian conservative church ladies supporting Trump and I can’t help but think “Why are you supporting a married man who shagged a porn star and said he could grab any woman by the pussy”

          Why the hell would they support a piece of trash like that?

      • fair play. whilst they are often correlated, conversative doesn’t mean christian; and christian (or religous in general) doesn’t mean conservative.

        it may not be as “good” as FB now but, given they have 5 million new users in a few weeks, they will be investing heavily (assuming the creators know what they’re doing) will be able to get new features onto the platform very quickly.

        “”The idea of a giant echo chamber full of the same can only be orders more toxic than it already is. Ugh. Sad.””
        Yes – this is the big big worry tbh.

  4. As I have said before, a pity we didn’t see more of Turnbull speaking like that when he was PM.

      • Haha bjw, l have absolutely no expectations of our politicians. However, they were all born with spines and there were many occasions when Turnbull could have shown his.

        • Yes, and many people I’m sure do, to end up pushed out of politics long before you ever even knew their name.

  5. “Yes I dare””… brilliant. Murdoch has done so much damage to our society all to line his own reptilian pockets.

  6. This is just more of the same. Echo chambers everywhere. That’s what happens when you have partisan media. The other networks are also fake news. Russiagate is a great example.

  7. Trump to win in 2024.

    He can pursue voter fraud for the next few years much like the left pursued Russian “collusion” for three years only to come up empty handed.

    There is already evidence of voter fraud so won’t be difficult to prove.

    • Stitch Up the problem for Trump is that twitter echo chamber ‘evidence’ doesn’t last a second under court scrutiny. One good outcome of this election, aside from Trump being fired, is being able to witness social media conspiratorial thinking absolutely shredded in court for the nonsense it is.

        • @Stitchup the claims to date have been tossed out of court, the findings are all there to be read – a Michigan judge dismissed one piece of Trump’s ‘evidence’ on Day 1 as ‘hearsay within hearsay’. Judges are reportedly exasperated at the standard of evidence being put forward.

        • Facebook, the media and journalists don’t decide what is legal the courts will.

          Errr, yeah ? That’s kind of… the point ?

    • Voter fraud is irrelevant. The Dems understood that well. Once the genie is out of the bottle and someone can declare with 270, even some large scale voter fraud won’t matter.

      • Large scale fraud hasn’t been, and isn’t probable. It’s a decent system and fairly robust.

        If the electoral process is categorically undermined, then democracy effectively can’t function and is, therefore, effectively dead.

        Therefore, in the absence of probably widespread fraud, which their states cite and report themselves, declaring victory at 270 should be, and has to be, acceptable, else the system of democracy is dead.

        Remember: Trump is a solution looking for a problem to solve. He’ll just say what he needs to maintain the upper-hand in any given situation. His claims are a beat-up, and his claims preceeded any actual substance – he’s been doing it since 2016, this is not new at all.

    • Unfortunately, the Boy who follows is even more Right wing.
      Also Rupert will “live” on like Mao Tse Dong and Ho Chi Minh (using Russian post living technicians). They will need to keep shaving him for years. Also Jerry will keep trying to earn her retainer.

  8. But gravity *is* about as pure a physics fact as can exist. It’s simple and all the requirements of the scientific method can be satisfied.

    The climate is almost infinitely complex by comparison to gravity. The hypothesis of catastrophic anthropogenic climate change is absurdly complex by comparison to the gravity hypothesis. The assertion that the earth is certainly facing catastrophic anthropogenic claimate change is unable to be subjected to all of the minimum requirements of scientific enquiry – most notably:
    (a) it is impossible to independently replicate the claim, and
    (b) it is impossible to conclusively falsify the claim.

    Therefore, Turnbulls argument is fatally flawed. Catastrophic anthropogenic climate change is not “physics” – it is an unprovable hypothesis that may or may not be correct. He, and most of the world, is deluded on this most fundamental fact. The audience claps along because they are a clueless mob also.

    DLS, you’ve lived through at least two major economic manias, I’m surprised you seem unwilling to event sense there might be a scent of scientific mania in the air.

    I’m a Nucleus Wealth customer and with each arrogant DLS diatribe that is fatally factually flawed and loaded with contempt I grow nervous that I’ve made a wise choice. I hope to God his financial analytical acumen is nothing like his scientific acumen.

    • You’re right. It’s not just physics. It is physics and chemistry and biology and all the filthy impure derivatives that make up the the science world. That does not mean that it climate science is not science, as messy as it may be. It just means that a different, yet still scientific, approach is taken to deal with the mass of data, the modelling, the testing, the research and everything else that goes into the scientific endeavour.

      As to the two minimum bars you’ve stated, one could set up an enclosed natural environment, set the CO2 levels to pre industrial and then flood that system with industrial goodies to see what happens. It won’t be identical to the whole ecosystem of earth but if you mess it up then you’ve shown what happens. Or, look at Venus for what happens when greenhouse gasses get a bit on the heavy side.

      B, Popperian falsification isn’t taken to be the cut off point for what is, and is not, scientific. Nor is the Kuhnian notion of revolutions leading to accepted paradigms. However, if you wanted to dismiss a theory the best thing to do is come up with a better one that has the evidence to back it up. Quite a few others have been tossed up, the sun or natural geological processes come to mind, and both have been investigated and are not the case yet.

      There is also no Proof, in the mathematical terms, in science. So, you are technically correct (what a clever boy you are) that it is un unprovable hypothesis. Much like no length can ever be known, a confidence can only be given for the value stated, the confidence for the change in climate being caused by anthropogenic means is up there with the confidence that a politician will tell a porky in the next 24 hours.

      All of the above is just a long way of me both entertaining myself on a Friday afternoon and pointing out that you don’t have the foggiest when talking about the validity of climate science. Maybe Paul Kelly will offer you a job as a cadet journalist?

      • I happen to be a qualified scientist and engineer with specialisation in measurement and modelling. I hold formal appointment by the Federal Government’s National Measurement Institute as a Legal Metrologist. I’ve been practicing in the field for almost 20 years. So I am very familiar with science, measurement, modelling, uncertainties, correlations and those associated matters.

        So, to return the classy-ness, it is you who can fuck right off. Or we could actually engage in polite discussion. The latter is my preference.

        • Well, this is awkward. You may sometimes calibrate stuff for my work. Your expertise on measurement aside, your above statements and climate change and validity are still naive and off the mark.

          • Ahhh… the old “you don’t have specific qualification in left-handed shoelace tying so you’re not qualified to comment” angle. Ughhh please. Part of the problem of the failure of specialist inquiry in modern times is the failure to involve generalists, interdisciplinary input and people who are “on the tools” but may not possess a PhD.

            You also seem to forget my expertise in modelling. This is directly relevant and, I argue, qualifies me to comment.

            But you don’t need to take my word for it as a lone voice – just look at the last couple of decades of actual attempts to model global-scale complex systems. The last 30 years (if not longer) of fatally flawed model-based projections of complex global-scale systems across multiple disciplines is one of the fundamental issues at the heart of my concerns about the reliability of catastrophist projections about what the future global climate is going to look like.

            So my concerns are thus not just because of my particular skills. It is also because the last many decades of history argues strongly that projections of global-scale models are wrong more often than they are correct. Consequently, it seems to me that even if I had no relevant qualifications but was a betting man, the historical odds favour the catastrophists being wrong by a significant margin.

            You’re entitled to your opinion that I’m naive. I don’t care. I *do* care if you have information of substance to provide, particularly if it contradicts my position because although I might express my views strongly, they are always loosely held otherwise I’m just another face in the large pool of mediocre scientists.

    • Johnboy, you are one of the few people on this site that understand science. Unfortunately most of the people here are incapable of understanding it.

      • Just to toot my own horn a bit, I am a scientist who has spent time studying the philosophy of science and have maintained an interest of what is, and is not science. I ain’t no Massimo Pigliucci, but I do think I have on ok understanding of this issue and I maintain that Johnboy’s post shows an ignorance of both climate science and how to gauge whether or not something is scientific or not.

        Edit: Here’s a good book by Massimo Pigliucci on the question of what is, and is not, science.

      • If you’re suggesting that Evolution is not “science fact” to use the common phrase, then yes.

        Evolution can never be more than a theory. There is compelling evidence, but it cannot ever be “proven” scientifically.

  9. There is a very clear statistical relationship between global CO2 levels and global temperatures either directly measured or inferred from data obtained from other sources. Then there is very clear scientific evidence that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. So we know this.

    We also know that if temperatures are rising, and keep doing so, the impact on the planet will be catastrophic.

    Now it doesn’t take much thinking to work out that if this is a risk, even if we are not 100% sure it’s caused by our actions, changes in our behaviour that can mitigate this risk are worth making. It’s simple risk-reward.

    People like to say that the Green crowd have a vested interest in promoting climate change, and that’s certainly true to an extent. But there’s also a much larger sector of our society who have a vested interest – and trillions of dollars invested – in denying that there’s anything going on.

    So who do we believe? Well I for one believe that climate change is real, it needs to be mitigated but we need to be conscious of how we go about doing it. People like The Australian are trying to turn this into a normative argument when it’s just not.

  10. Trump was a Democrat camp-follower, donor and presidential wannabe for years. Some Republicans have not forgotten that. Trump took up the Republican mantle, entered the race, then spat the dummy and threatened to run as an independent, which could have split the GOP vote to just about guarantee Democrat victory. That scared the knickers off the Republican Grandees, and secured Trump the nomination in a weak field. Some Republicans have not forgotten that. In 2016 the Republican machine spent big on big data, outsmarted the Democrats in the voter manipulation game (in which Fox played a significant, perhaps pivotal, role), the rust-belt repressed and the ‘deplorables’ voted against Clinton, the Electoral College gerrymander got the numbers to give the election to the GOP, and Trump took up residence in the White House. Many Republicans didn’t really care, so long as the GOP was in power. The GOP then got on with four years of ramming through legislation that benefited their Corporate America Inc doner-owners, while Trump played at ‘president’ and at golf, and the Trump family got on with four years of wheeler-dealing for the benefit of Trump Inc. Evidently Trump soon forget who he was really supposed to be performing for, and his frequent deviations from the script, capped off by his recklessness on CoVID-19, queered the pitch to the extent that the Republicans lost the 2020 popular vote. More than a few Republicans are never going to forget that. As a consequence, the GOP now faces challenging times, and needs another Electoral College / Supreme Court marvel (a la Florida 2000) to keep the White House. Trump, out to salvage as much of his own skin as he can, is already making a fist of that effort by diverting ‘defend the election’ donations into his own political action committee, just as the deeply indebted GOP needs to pay some very big bills, meet some very big obligations, and get the faithful and the waverers out in force to try to secure the Georgia US Senate runoffs at the beginning of January. More than a few Republicans aren’t going to forget that. Absent a miracle, the Republicans have lost the White House to Obama’s sidekick (Bubba; Bite Me; Obama Lite). Not a lot of Republicans are likely to forgive that. Meanwhile, Trump boasts that he’s considering starting his own media network. He’s levelled that threat before. He’s failed comprehensively in practically every other endeavour except the property racket in which, apparently, even a very unstable imbecile with the right shonky connections and enough of the shady clients of certain European banks, simply cannot fail. But Trump wants the world to believe he is going to take on the Murdoch clan – and other media empires – at their own game. Evidently the Very Stable Genius isn’t quite smart enough to deduce that it is the media that has made him what he is, that he owes almost all of his ‘success’ to the media, that it was the media that propelled him into the White House, and that it will be the media that leads the charge to bring him down. If he thinks Rupert Murdoch could be ruthless, he’s in for a very rude awakening indeed if he is foolish enough to consider challenging Lachlan. Trump is nowhere near as popular among growing numbers of Republicans as he and his coterie and spinmeisters would like to think he is, he has made many enemies and hurt many people along the way, and he’s laid a trail of odure of such magnitude over the years that the media will be able to revel in (and profit from) the ever-unravelling Trump saga for years to come. Trump might be seeking consolation in the prospect of inoculating himself with a broad-spectrum ‘presidential pardon’ but that is only going to work for federal crimes: there are plenty of people and entities beavering away on various cases in state jurisdictions and in other dominions that could see him in and out of courts – and possibly jails – for quite some time. All of which will be mana from heaven for the media. Indeed, he will probably need his own network if he hopes to gain much sympathetic media coverage at all.

  11. PalimpsestMEMBER

    @NT I suspect you are on point. Trump family interests tried to buy AON and were rebuffed. One not very surprising observation from the NYT series was that every company Trump runs loses money, while the ones he invests in but are run by others, make money. We can see why from observing his management style. Only yes people need apply. Messengers with bad news, or even just reality, will be shot. So, can he set up and run a media company? Only with constant contributions from supporters.

    An associated issue that we are all too polite to mention as that he appears to be in mental decline. His unsteady gait coincided with his unprompted denials that he had mini-strokes, and self-report that he was administered mental acuity tests that he found ‘very hard’.

    It will be an interesting experiment. Will he succeed and build a bigger following, or will he spin off into viewpoints so bizarre that even his followers can see that they are nuts. Some followers will never give up. The news over the next few years will be denied by true believers. The paedophile trial is being run out of NY State, so although he’s got the lead prosecutor dismissed twice, it might not prove so easy going forward. I look forward to Q-anon and the TDS crowd spinning that one.